Saturday, November 10, 2007

Sunday morning sports thoughts

Thoughts on sports with Sunday morning coffee:

-Gotta love high school football. The Iola-Scandinavia Thunderbirds, who play their home games just an out-and-up away from our house, beat Fennimore Friday night in the state semifinals to advance to the state title game. We've got a great program in our little town - conference title contenders every year, always make the playoffs, went to the finals in 1999. We've also got a great senior class that has been excelling on the varsity stage since they were sophomores.

At right is a nice picture from Doug Wojcik of the Stevens Point Journal. #4 is Michael Griffin, a great basketball player who sometimes plays with us at lunchtime, stud running back and linebacker. #7 is Kody Morgan, who played on our kickball team in a tournament this summer. #10 is Dustin McAloon, whose dad is a group publisher in our company. Jordan Mortenson, the star tight end/defensive end who had three sacks last night, is a super kid and the son of a good guy who plays basketball with us every day. Colton Zimmerman, the exciting quarterback, lives down the street from us.

It's the epitome of small-town high school football.

The challenging news: the T-Birds play Stratford, who Schwalbach is familiar with from his Marshfield days. They've won the last four Division 6 state titles, and have lost one game in the last five years, to LaCrescent, which I understand is a much larger Minnesota school.

Iola's title game is at 1 p.m. Thursday, Jim Austin and I are going. Polzin, Andy - meet you there? Then we'll go catch Eden Prairie in the Dome the next night.

Bad news for Truckers fans: Clintonville lost its semifinal game Saturday afternoon to nearby New London, 28-0. Good news is nothing will be holding Polzin up from the Minnesota festivities.

-Saw something nice in the Saturday Journal Sentinel sports section. Geoff Jenkins, who is parting ways with the Brewers after a decade of loyal service, took out a full-page ad thanking the fans of Milwaukee for being so supportive during his time here. Classy move.

While reading it, a young boy at Pick 'n Save came up to me with a pen and asked me to autograph the ad for him. I obliged. (That one's for Will and Burch)

On the negative, if another team signs Jenks the Brewers won't get any compensatory draft picks, because apparently players like Nick Johnson, who was injured and didn't play last year, are deemed better than Jenkins, who hit 21 home runs. On the plus side, if Francisco Cordero or Scott Linebrink sign elsewhere, the Brewers will get first round picks. I'd rather keep them, but you know how that goes.

-It figures: Just when the Badgers' chances of having a special season evaporate - which sent by blood pressure and stress back to normal levels - here come the Packers at 7-1. They're far from perfect - no running game, still give up plenty on defense - but they're playing much better than anyone thought they would this season. Especially Brett Favre, he's been terrific. Now I get riled up for Packers games.

Of course, they could easily lose Sunday to Minnesota, which despite putrid quarterback play (sorry Brooks) still has a lot going for it. Good article about Darren Sharper in the Saturday Journal Sentinel which pretty much said Ted Thompson made a mistake letting Sharper go a couple years ago.

I can't say much about Adrian Peterson that hasn't been said, but saw an interesting anecdote in Todd Finkelmeyer's Cap Times story about Brad Childress. Seems that when Ron Dayne was a freshman Barry Alvarez put Dayne into the UNLV game in the first half, and Childress went nuts, wondering why Dayne was in there. A comment left after the story says "Kinda like he didn't want Adrian Peterson in there for the Vikings." Nice one.

-Lastly, a co-worker posed this question on Friday:

I need help figuring out an answer to a trivia question .. What was the only father and son to both lead their respective NCAA division in free throw percentage? One was Division I, the other was not. I was thinking Rick Barry and one of his sons, but I think they all played for Division I schools. Any ideas?