This year I am giving (no) thanks for our Turkey Day blog.
Give me a second to catch you up! Please follow along.
I have donned the red, white and blue on this Earth for 32 years and 7 months, being grateful and thankful for everything along the way (even though I may not have portrayed that from ages 16-22 — and for that I apologize!).
However, this season I am going to provide some sports moments – personal and of my favorite teams – that I am giving (no) thanks to:
I was only a few months old but here’s a (no) thanks to Napolean McCallum of Navy who pretty much single handily beat the Gamecocks in Annapolis to ruin their Cinderella 1984 season. The slipper was evidently too small.
The second (no) thanks goes to Kent Herbek of the Minnesota Twins, who deliberately pulled Braves OF Ron Gant off 1st base in the World Series. You were saved due to no replay in the early 90s, there Herbie!
A small (no) thanks out to Chris Webber and the Fab Five, who I thought were God’s gift to basketball in the early 1990s. The championship game against the Dean himself at UNC and that fateful timeout call by a young Webber that gave the Heels the ball and the championship. I blame Eric Montross to this day!
Next, a (no) thanks must go to Jim Leyritz, who miraculously rose off the Yankees 3rd base bench and somehow hit a hanging curveball barely (I think it scraped) over the left field wall for a home run in the 1996 World Series that doomed the Braves in Game 4. Damn, Yankees!
A huge (no) thanks to the 2002 Chesnee High School Eagles baseball team and the 2006 College of Charleston Cougars baseball team for ending my high school and college baseball careers, respectively. Like one of my former coaches always said, “Good pitching beats good hitting any day.”
A low blow (no) thanks must go out to Rod Gardner and Woody Dantzler for the Catch II in 2000. Student body left, guy wide open down the middle, Woody throws a prayer to the right down the Tiger sideline to Gardner and the pass falls incomplete. Gamecocks win, Gamecocks win, or least that how it should have happen for people in garnet and black. Unfortunately, a catch, no flag, no win and yes, I still have night tremors of that elderly Clemson lady shaking me profusely after the so-called catch!
The last (no) thanks goes to the one and only Nick Saban. He left the Louisiana banks of the Mississippi for greener pastures in the NFL, only to resurface in the SEC’s T-town at the reins of the Crimson Tide. This one is not only for the dismantling of the 2011 LSU football season, but he has single handily pushed it downward ever since. The Tigers, as a whole pigskin, have yet to recover from 1/9/12. New coach, new standards?
The (no) thanks bring back a lot of memories that were hard to get over and obviously forget. The reason for going down this touchy road was to show you that I have definitely had some depressing sports moments in my life since April of 1984 but each of these and hundreds more worthy of a possible (no) thanks book have taught me so much along the way on this journey called life.
Coping with defeat. Prepared to win, but still losing. Playing the entire game until all the outs are made or the clock reads 0:00. Trusting teammates more than one can imagine. Things are not always as good or bad as they seem. Life throws all kinds of curveballs…how will you react? Last but not least, these (no) thanks moments have taught me to enjoy every second (win/lose/draw) and be very grateful for all the THANKFUL moments!
So, this weekend as we eat way too much turkey and dressing: count your blessings, good or bad, and be thankful for all the moments that tug at your heart because there is a lesson in there by some way, shape or form….you just might not see it clearly yet!
Oh, and watch some football too…it’s RIVALRY WEEK! I went 4-1 last week to move my overall tally to 75-39 (65.78%). Eli went 2-3 last week to move his mark overall to 63-51 (55.26%).
South Carolina @ Clemson
Too many athletes in orange and the game is at night in Death Valley. Tigers don’t cover but win easily!
Michigan @ Ohio State
Playoffs on the line! Man, that sounds good just saying that! Urban’s QB is healthy, Harbaugh’s is not…Buckeyes roll!
Florida @ Florida State
Gators can play and the Noles have a stud at QB but RB Dalvin Cook is the difference maker. Cook has a day as Jimbo sweeps this Gators class.
Georgia Tech @ Georgia
Neither team has anything to play for but bowl positioning. This game always seems to impress in weird years. Option, option, option, TD! Rambling Wreck sting Bulldogs!
Thankfully, that’s all for this week. Until next time…