Running off at the typewriter …
Did you see where the government shutdown has cost thousands of "non-essential" employees their jobs? You know, like Josh Freeman, who has proven to be about as non-essential as you can get!
But, seriously, how can Freeman, in the span of a week, go from the Tampa Bay Bucs' starting quarterback to the Tampa Bay Bucs' ex-quarterback? How does a player go from setting franchise records for touchdown passes and passing yards last season to being released from the team four games into this season? At least the winless Tampa Bay Buccaneers of 1976 were lovably inept. Coach Greg Schiano, the paranoid taskmaster head coach of the modern-day Bucs, has taken all of the "fun" out of dysfunction.
Maybe Schiano should resurrect the famous quote of former Bucs coach John McKay, who was once asked about his offense's execution and replied, "I'm all for it!" … And speaking of incompetence: If our politicians can shut down the entire United States Government can't they at least do us one favor and shut down the Jaguars, too? Now THAT would be public service! …
Steve Spurrier was reportedly slurring his words when he taped his TV show after the game against UCF. Certainly, Knight fans can relate to the Head Ball Coach. Their team, after all, has driven them to drink many times over the last several years. … Speaking of UCF, the Knights better be careful today against Memphis in the conference opener. Coming off two of the biggest games in school history – Penn State and South Carolina – and with Louisville on the horizon, today is the prototype trap game for UCF. Which is why Mikey likes: UCF over Memphis by just 6, Florida over Arkansas by 9, FSU over Maryland by 20, Ravens over Dolphins by 2, Rams over Jags by 12, Open Date over Yucs by 3, Washington politicians under Miley Cyrus twerking by 5 percentage points in the approval ratings. …
By the way, can you believe the government shutdown has caused the closing of the National Zoo? Does this mean the lions and tigers and bears are running wild without any supervision? Hey, that sounds like the Gator football program under Urban Meyer! … The question isn't why Lane Kiffin was fired by Southern Cal, the question is why he was ever hired by Southern Cal in the first place? Actually, why has he ever been hired by anybody? Seriously, what's he ever done? Let's be honest, shall we: His most impressive credential as a head-coaching candidate is that he's Monte Kiffin's son. …
Sentinel colleague Beth Kassab wrote a column the other day criticizing UCF for the 30-second commercial that aired last week during the nationally televised game with South Carolina. The commercial, Kassab lamented, showed "a skateboarding student, a campus swimming pool worthy of a Disney resort, an expansive workout facility for students and shots of the basketball arena and football stadium. No classrooms. No books. No computers or labs." Pop quiz: A 17-year-old high school football recruit who is watching a commercial during a college football game is more apt to get excited about (A) Computer labs (B) Books (C) A swimming pool surrounded by lots of pretty girls? With all due respect to Kassab, if you answered "C" then UCF aired exactly the right commercial. …
For all of you viewers out there who are sad because "Breaking Bad" has come to an end, there's hope. You can watch the sequel starring Blaine Gabbert on Sunday. It's called, "Just Plain Bad." … Jimmy Fallon: "The Vikings and Steelers played a game in London (last week). Fans were like, 'I wish we had our own NFL team?' And New Yorkers said, 'You want two? We've got the Jets and Giants.' " … True story: O.J. Simpson was caught stealing cookies from the prison cafeteria. Too bad Johnny Cochran isn't still alive to defend him: "If it ain't chocolate chip, you must acquit."
Don't forget, you can click on OrlandoSentinel.com and read the wildly popular Open Mike blog and interactive extravaganza to get my freshest takes on what's happening in the world of sports. Here's a blog on how the Jacksonville Jaguars could make themselves an instant TV draw if they signed Tim Tebow:
Count Orlando TV station WKMG Channel 6 as yet another vote for the Jacksonville Jaguars signing Tim Tebow.
A couple of weeks ago, WKMG made national news when station officials felt compelled to issue an on-screen explanation for why they had to show the worst NFL game of the day -- the pathetic Jaguars losing to the pitiful Oakland Raiders -- instead of the "Manning Bowl" pitting Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos against his brother Eli Manning and the New York Giants.
WKMG officials, obviously trying to stave off the flood of complaints from irate viewers, put what was reported nationally as an on-screen "apology" for having to show the Jaguars instead of the Manning Bowl. In reality, it was more of a clarification scrolled across the screen that said: "In accordance with NFL policy, WKMG must carry all Jacksonville Jaguars away games. We apologize for any inconvenience."
According to NFL policy, Orlando is considered a "secondary" TV market for the Jaguars. This means WKMG must televise all Jaguars road games, including Sunday's stinker against the St. Louis Rams. I made my feelings known about this ridiculous NFL policy in a recent column. However, this controversy could easily be remedied if the hapless Jaguars, who have nothing to lose, would simply sign Tebow.
"If Tebow were playing for the Jaguars," WKMG Channel 6 General Manager Skip Valet told me the other day, "we wouldn't just televise all their road games, we'd probably clear (televise) all of their home games, too. ... When Tebow played in Denver, he turned the Broncos into a national team."
What do you think, Orlando?
Would you be more inclined to watch the Jaguars if Tebow were quarterbacking the team?
(Most interesting reader retorts, radio rabble, tangy tweets and message-board mockery of the week):
On Steve Spurrier slurring his words on his TV show after his South Carolina Gamecocks held on to beat UCF: "He's gone from The Head Ball Coach to The Head Highball Coach."
On my column about how Magic fans must put their faith in GM Rob Hennigan: "I might put my faith in him, just not my money."
On whether Orlando fans would be more inclined to watch Jaguars games on TV if Tim Tebow played for the team: "I would rather watch Tim Tebow mowing his yard than Jaguars games."
(In celebration of big-time boxing – Miguel Cotto vs. Delvin Rodriguez – returning to Orlando tonight, three of my favorite quotes about the sweet science):
"It's not a foreign substance. It's made right here in the United States!" – former boxing manager Al Braverman after being accused of putting an illegal substance on his fighter's gloves.
"First your legs go. Then you lose your reflexes. Then you lose your friends." – former featherweight champion Willie Pep
"One day headlines; the next day breadlines," former boxer Lenny Mancini on the fate of so many professional boxers.