I'm not going to wax poetic about 9/11. After all, I live in Iowa. There were many more people far more directly affected by it than I was. So, I'm going to follow the lead of Wonkette. Everyone remembers where they were. Everyone's story of where they were is as boring as everyone else's unless you lived in New York, worked at the Pentagon, or hung out with Cheney in his secret underground lair. Let's just all save the rest of the discussion. My only comment is this. The Quad City Times (occasionally written in complete sentences!) led with the headline "In a Flash, Everything Changed." This seemed to be echoed by just about everyone else. But it's false. Nothing is any different now, other than the fact we are in a couple of wars. The ABC News website led last night with President Bush placing the wreath in the reflecting pool at Ground Zero, but the next story was on the secret affairs of Princess Diana. The prosecution rests.
Back to the fun stuff: Fred Smoot and his band of merry men, coming off the NFL's final punishment for their Deadspin Hall of Fame-inducted, Gilligan-on-Cinemax-esque trip to Lake Minnetonka last year, take on the mighty Redskins tonight on ESPN's Monday Night Football. For a couple of months, I was hoping against all hope that someone, like Showtime, would pick up Arrested Development (my rage over its cancellation was hinted at yesterday). But now I'm glad nobody picked the series up. If whoever picked up AD was half as over-the-top with the hype as ESPN has been with Monday Night Football, I couldn't bring myself to watch it. Moronic clips on every Sportscenter of "classic" Monday Night games. Never-ending drivel on their announcing team (I love Kornheiser, but I can't watch this crap; Theismann completely cancels out any positive effect from Tony). A pregame show that started - I'm not kidding - at 11:30 Central.
Someone needs to tell ESPN that it's not going to work. You see, networks are paying tens of millions of dollars to show National Football League* games, even more for the right to show them in prime time. So why would ABC give up its claim to the biggest primetime football event of the week unless that was no longer profitable? I know there are people who genuinely care about football enough to watch 2 games on Monday night (otherwise, Merrill Hoge would be fired, taking the five-button suit market with him). But is there anyone who is willing to watch 7 hours of pregame before that? Don't people have jobs? I'm a Vikings fan, and I'm turning the game on mute, drinking a beer, and reading the newspaper. I'm sure as hell not watching pregame for 16 straight hours.
I'm not a huge NFL - whoops, National Football League* - fan. I'm more of a baseball/college football guy myself. I don't read Peter King. I go into convulsions at the sound of Ed Werder's voice as if I was Kramer watching Entertainment Tonight. So, while I can explain the rule 5 draft and non-waiver trade deadline, I know little to nothing about the National Football League* salary cap. I do know that it creates parity and is less flexible than the NBA cap or the baseball luxury tax. So can someone explain to me why Daniel Snyder is considered the football Steinbrenner "because he can invest a whole lot of money in his team"? Doesn't everyone have, more or less, the same amount to invest? Is it becuase he can make contracts with more guaranteed money? I don't get it. So, please, someone get me an answer.
Pick of the night: Vikings/Skins over 34.5
One more quick story: I don't know how many people caught footage of the riots in Columbus following tOSU/Texas on Saturday night. Deadspin and Every Day Should Be Saturday are reporting that, in the middle of the mattress-burning fun, a student ran his car into a police riot prevention checkpoint, injuring a fireman, a school administrator, and the administrator's husband. The best part of the story? The driver was an Ohio State male cheerleader.