"Lazzari's Sports Roundup" - - - - 11-15-08
Regarding the University of Michigan's awful football season in 2008: Perhaps WFAN's Bob Heussler put it in perspective when he remarked the following during a recent radio update: "The last time Michigan had a losing season, a man had NOT YET walked on the moon."..........TRIVIA QUESTION: Over the past 25 years, who is the only member of the Boston Celtics to lead the NBA in field goal percentage? Answer to follow..........Here's a tidbit that I believe accurately reflects the kid of today vs. the kid of the 1970's: The other day, my nephew bought a new video game, invited a few friends over, and enjoyed sedentary bliss for hours. At the same age, I received a new ABA basketball, rounded up a few buddies, and played pick-up games until it got dark. And if we were lucky enough to be playing on a lighted court back in those days, the games would usually end when one of us was forced to go home with blisters on his feet. Yes--a different era, my friends.........This week in sports history, November 17, 1956: Syracuse RB Jim Brown scores SIX touchdowns and adds seven extra points--leading his team to a 61-7 victory over Colgate. Brown's scoring total of 43 points would be a new major college football record--surpassing the total of 42 points set by Mississippi's Arnold "Showboat" Boykin back in 1951. Brown finished the day with 197 yards rushing on 22 carries--with his TD's runs ranging in length between one and fifty yards.........On ESPN Radio's "Inside Yankee Baseball" recently, the issue of steroids came up--mainly, how baseball players take more of a "hit" when it comes to using performance-enhancing drugs than football players do. AGREED, guys. Can we LEGITIMATELY believe that these bulked-up football stars can be THAT big and THAT fast simply due to "advanced training methods?" Show host Rich Marazzi added this: "Football is just a small step below the WWE at this point."..........ITEM: The N.Y. Yankees part ways with massage therapist Scott Yellin. Geez, what did the guy do to warrant this--SCRATCH someone by mistake at a time when his fingernails were a bit too long?..........Many thanks go out to Charlie Dowd, Brian Irizzary, and the rest of the Connecticut Defenders staff in reference to the recent postseason, private party they threw at the Hard Rock Cafe/Foxwoods; I was privileged and thankful to be part of it. I mean--what's better than mingling/ talking sports with various individuals while you're standing next to a set drumsticks once used by Deep Purple's Ian Paice? Thanks, guys--a great party thrown by a classy group of people..........How 'bout linebacker Pierre Banks of Appalachian State--one of SEVENTEEN children in his family? It's impressive that this guy currently weighs above 200 pounds-- coming from a family that had so many mouths to feed. Even MORE impressive is that Pierre completed his bachelor's degree in just three years and is in his final semester of coursework for a master's degree in educational media. Yes, some guys CAN rise up and beat the odds, folks..........Answer to trivia question: KEVIN McHALE--who led the league consecutive years ('86-87 and '87-88) while shooting at a 60% clip for both seasons..........Can you imagine if professional kickboxer Elaina Maxwell married former major league pitcher Tom House, divorced, then married Alabama running back Glen Coffee? Java lovers everywhere would surely delight in her full married name of Elaina Maxwell House Coffee..........Happy birthday wishes go out to former NBA player Matt Fish--who blows out 39 candles on November 18th. A 6'11" center, Fish starred at UNC-Wilmington--where he scored 17.6 ppg during his senior year while averaging more than nine rebounds. Drafted by Golden State in the second round of the 1992 draft, Fish played for FIVE different teams during his short, three-year NBA career (including the Knicks)--averaging only 3.5 points and 2.2 rebounds per game. Hey, they all can't be Nate Thurmond, right? Best wishes, Matt..........Finally, condolences go out to the family of legendary tennis coach Lennart Bergelin--who died of heart failure recently at a Stockholm hospital; he was 83. Bergelin was most famous for his work with the great Swede Bjorn Borg--having worked with the 11-time Grand Slam winner between 1971 and 1983. Bergelin was a fine player himself--having won nine Swedish championship singles titles between 1945 and 1955 along with the French Open doubles title in 1948. Bergelin was also the captain when Sweden won its first Davis Cup trophy in 1975. He is survived by his wife, Rose Marie, and three sons; may Lennart Bergelin rest in peace.