Another ho-hum Pack hoops home schedule | NevadaAppeal.com
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Another ho-hum Pack hoops home schedule

Joe Santoro
For the Nevada Appeal

Sports fodder for a Friday morning . . .

The Nevada Wolf Pack announced its 2010-11 men’s basketball schedule this week. Let’s just say that there probably won’t be a rush to the ticket window to buy season tickets. In addition to the annual snooze-fest known as the Western Athletic Conference games, the home schedule features the likes of San Francisco State, Montana, Portland State, UNLV and Arizona State. UNLV is always a crowd favorite but the rest of the non-league schedule was obviously designed to put more emphasis on home victories than sell-out crowds.

This upcoming Pack hoops season has transition year written all over it. It will be a very inexperienced team (fun to watch but inexperienced) and the season, at least here in northern Nevada, will be over before most people realize it has started. There will be just two home games from Dec. 21 through Jan. 19 and just one from Jan. 28 through Feb. 18. The entire home schedule ends Feb. 26. Better not miss those San Francisco State and Portland State thrillers.

. . .

Alabama football coach Nick Saban likened the sports agents who prey on college athletes to pimps this week. Hmm, let’s see if we have this straight. It’s OK for coaches (the same guys who get paid millions of dollars while their athletes don’t get a penny) to seek out and actually interview for new jobs while they are still at their current job but as soon as a player tries to take care of his future he’s nothing more than a prostitute seeking out a pimp. And, oh yeah, it’s also perfectly fine for a coach to cheat and break dozens of NCAA rules and then bolt for another million dollar deal elsewhere before the sanctions come down. But when a player breaks rules and accepts money the school throws his Heisman Trophy in the garbage. Funny how that works.

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The University of Southern California removing Reggie Bush’s Heisman Trophy from its campus is in keeping with the Trojans’ hear no evil, see no evil philosophy that stained Mike Garrett’s reign as athletic director for almost 20 years. Yes, Bush broke the rules. But he’s certainly not the only one in USC history (and certainly not the only Heisman winner) to wear cardinal and gold that shamed the university. When is USC going to remove all of its mementos from the Pete Carroll era?

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Who wants Terrell Owens? Well, apparently nobody. Owens can still help a NFL team but he’s not a No. 1 receiver anymore. And he certainly doesn’t warrant No. 1 receiver money. The problem is that you still get that No. 1 receiver diva attitude. Owens, though, would be a good signing for a legitimate playoff team that needs a veteran presence (and a little play-making ability) at wide receiver. The Chicago Bears? The New York Jets? The Pittsburgh Steelers? The Washington Redskins? The San Francisco 49ers? And, no, not the Oakland Raiders.

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This is the season the 49ers return to the playoffs. Hey, all they have to do is finish with a better record than the Arizona Cardinals, Seattle Seahawks and St. Louis Rams. It’s sort of like qualifying for a bowl game out of the WAC.

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The Chicago Cubs should name Ryne Sandberg as their manager immediately. Give Sandberg two full months to evaluate the talent on the roster. Let him get his feet wet at the major league level when he doesn’t have the pressure of winning. Why let Lou Piniella, who obviously checked out mentally about a year ago, stick around and sleep in the corner of the dugout for the rest of this year? And you wonder why a certain organization hasn’t won a World Series in over a century.