Sunday, May 15, 2011

College Grad

Photo courtesy of www.troy43.com
If you have read this blog offering with regularity, you will recall that it pisses me off to no end that NFL athletes have often come out of college with nothing to show for it but the chance to play in the NFL.  They might attend very good schools but when their NFL careers are over, if they weren't careful with their money they might struggle to get on with their lives with some sort of dignity and equal success.  Many are drafted before they graduate and don't ever bother going back to finish their degrees and prove to themselves that they have the brains to do it.  I am very pleased to say that Troy Polamalu, Safety of the Pittsburgh Steelers, isn't one of them.  During this lockout when the owners are probably thinking about making more money and the players are thinking about staying in great physical condition so they can get right back to it when the lockout ends, Troy Polamalu finished up his coursework for a Bachelor's degree in history at the University of Southern California.  In his blog - www.troy43.com - he says that while it is a blessing and privelege to play football at the highest professional level, he wanted "to emphasize the importance of education, and that nothing should supercede it."  Hooray for Troy Polamalu!  I wish more media outlets would have picked up the story.  Kudos to Troy and his family on completion of his degree.  So, Troy?  What are you thinking for grad school?

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On a different course during the lockout, Pittsburgh Steelers Wide Receiver (I didn't realize he's a Steelers "bitch," which is what I call wide receivers) Hines Ward is in the semifinals of "Dancing with the Stars."  My regular readers don't watch DwtS so I will explain that it's a reality show that features professional ballroom dancers teaching the specificity of what they do -- both Latin and Ballrooms dances -- to non-ballroom dancers.  Athletes, used to competing and enduring long practice sessions, do especially well.  Apolo Anton Ohno, Helio Castraneves, Kristi Yamaguchi, Shawn Johnson, and Emmitt Smith have each gone home with the Mirrorball Trophy.   I wish good luck to Hines Ward -- it's down to four couples and that guy could win.

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The best-of-seven series between the Chicago Bulls and the Miami Heat start tonight.  Derrick Rose, NBA 2011 MVP (congrats, sir!), and his teammates, including Carlos Boozer, Luol Deng, and Joaquim Noah, coached by Coach of the Year Tom Thibodeau (congrats to you too, sir!), will meet LeBron James and his teammates (none of whom is half as icky and full of himself as that super-inflated-egomaniac L. James) at the Madhouse on Madison.  I will agree that when it gets down to it, the playoffs are a whole other scaly fish, but I think LeBron James' ego will get the better of him and he will turn into the non-team-playing hot dog that he was for much of the season.  I hope the Bulls so crush the Heat and dash the selfish dreams of LeBron that he spends a great deal of the off season sitting on his Big South Beach Talent Chair in Miami shaking his head and asking over and over, "What happened?"  And we can all say, "The Bulls happened, jerk," and smile from ear to ear.

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