By HAL McCOY
There are a few of my favorite words:
MORIBUND: A synonym for the Cleveland Browns. When some folks began wondering if Alabama could beat the Browns, I scoffed in unison with the experts. How absurd. Then somebody played a mock video game between the Browns and Alabama and the Tide won, 34-0. Would it really be that close?
CHARTREUSE: The color the Seattle Seahaws wore Thursday night against the Los Angeles Rams. The team called it action green. But the Seakhawks jerseys, pants, socks and shoes were chartreuse. I know that because my Grandma McCoy drove a chartreuse Dodge Dart and she drove it like the LA Rams’ offense — not very fast, not very far and with constant sputtering.
ECCENTRIC: That word clearly describes Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, who never saw a microphone or camera that didn’t make him salivate. His rookie quarterback, Dak Prescott, has been as productive as Mattel at Christmas time in place of injured Tony Romo. But Romo is healthy and Prescott had the audacity to lose a close one to the New York Giants — after winning eight straight — and Jones is flapping his lips about Romo’s possible return to quarterback. The best thing Jones can do for the Cowboys is squat in a corner and count the money Prescott is bringing in.
STUPEFY: The word is close to the word stupid, which is how Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh sounded in response to rumors he might become head coach of the NFL’s Los Angeles Rams. Harbaugh said the rumors came from enemy collegiate coaches, the top three, and he called them ‘jive turkeys.’ When he says, “Top three,” he has to be referring to Ohio State’s Urban Meyer, who knows nothing about jive and is only connected with turkey at Thanksgiving. Why would Meyer want Harbaugh gone? Harbaugh hasn’t beaten him yet.
STOIC: If you want a living definition of stoic, watch any Bill Belichick press conference. He shows as much emotion as a public park statue, and offers the same amount of information as the statue would. And his stares at those who ask penetrating questions are as deflating as some of those footballs he team once used.
SKULLDUGGERY: Former Wake Forest assistant coach Tommy Elrod became the school’s analyst on its radio network when he didn’t get the head coaching job. He was not happy about not getting the head coaching job, so in his capacity as analyst he passed along some Wake Forest plays to the University of Louisville before they played — as if Louisville needed any help in beating Wake Forest, a collegiate football mud room rug on which most opponents wipe their cleats. Elrod was fired as the radio analyst and he was told he is no longer welcome at any events on the Wake Forest campus. They should have made him a human tackling dummy (without pads) for a week’s worth of Demon Deacons practices while he held a sign that read: “College Football’s Benedict Arnold.”
COHESION: The perfect definition is to watch the University of Dayton basketball team and their motto, “True Team,” fits like a leather driving glove. In an era when most players want the ball so that it can go directly toward the basket from their hands, the Flyers share the basketball like Dick Vitale shares adjectives. The Flyers actually sometimes pass the ball too much and have to force a shot as the shot clock runs down. More often, though, they come up with good shots and the entire concept is a credit to coach Archie Miller in these days of ‘Me-Me’ sports.
INGENUOUS: Aroldis Chapman barely spoke two words a week to the media while with the Cincinnati Reds (because none of us asked him anything). But he spoke up this week and said Chicago Cubs manager Joe Maddon misused him in the World Series. Chapman said he shouldn’t have been used in the ninth inning of Game 6 when the Cubs led by seven runs. Because of that, he said, he was tired when he was used in the eighth inning of Game 7 and gave up a two-run game-tying home run. And he is right. Maddon escaped a winter of discontent when his Cubs won Game 7 in extra innings. Had they lost Maddon might been found dangling from the El tracks at the Addison Street station.
AUDACITY: The good people of Memphis, Tenn. were more likely to see Elvis Presley walk down the street than they would see LeBron James, Kyrie Irving or Kevin Love of the Cleveland Cavaliers. Those three Cavs stars were excused from making the team’s only stop this year in Memphis, so they could rest. Yeah, 82 games plus the playoffs are a lot of games, but those guys are paid millions to perfor. And it is for sure that the Memphis Grizzlies didn’t lower ticket prices because the Cavaliers sent the Junior Varsity and donated a win to the home team.
LAMENTABLE: When your wife dances in spiked heels at your grandson’s wedding and doesn’t fall or even twist her ankle. But she finds out (after being misdiagnosed with an ankle sprain) that she has suffered a fractured ankle and must spend weeks in a brace, a boot and must move about on a scooter. I told her I didn’t want to dance.