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Just The Sports: Colin Cowherd's Dumb Statement of the Day

Just The Sports

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Colin Cowherd's Dumb Statement of the Day

Today on Colin's show, he managed to make three dumb statements and that was just in the one hour I listened to the show. He may make more than that many dumb statements every day, but I usually either stop listening after the first one or don't tune in to ESPN Radio at all.

His first dumb statement was when he said that a player's clutch-performing ability was determined by the time said player was seven or eight years old. Before you read further, you may want to take the time to wrap your head around Colin's mind-numbing declaration. I wouldn't have believed he actually said it, but he said it again when he came back from a commercial break.

I am not sure when this movement glorify this idea of "clutch" began, but I sincerely wish it would stop. And it is not because I have any problem with praising players who come through under pressure-packed conditions, but because of the way of the way it is presented by the sports media who for the large part write or talk from their gut instead of doing research to find out how good a player is. Anyone who knows anything realizes a person cannot trust his or her eyes alone to judge anything, let alone the performance of an athlete.

That being said, there are players who come up big for teams. These players are called good players. In no sport is there a good player who has not come up clutch at some point in his career.

The biggest problem I have with the use of clutch is most sports pundits have limited the term's applicability to only the final minutes or last half-innings of a game. Doing so is simplistic and wrong. This is a direct result of people usually only being able to remember the events of the final minutes or last half-innings and so they incorrectly put more emphasis on them and think they are more important. There is a psychology lesson in egocentrism there, but I am no expert on that subject.

In actuality, most games are decided long before the late stages of a game and clutch statistics should reflect that. A home run which creates an insurmountable lead should be considered no less clutch than a single that drives in the winning run for a team. Also, it is odd that the player who got himself on base to be driven in is not deemed as being as clutch as the hitter who drive him in.

Furthermore, if a basketball player chips in with 12 points in a win while his teammate hits one shot which just happens to be a game-winner, which one would you say is more clutch? Well, after Game 3 of the NBA Finals, it was Gary Payton everyone was talking about while no one mentioned Jason Williams' contribution.

Cowherd's second dumb statement of the day came about when he said that after Billy Beane came with Moneyball, baseball purists hated his guts. This statement is only half-wrong, but the most important half of the sentence is the part that is incorrect.

Billy Beane did not come out with Moneyball. He was the general manager of the baseball franchise that was spotlighted during the book and only a small part of the book overall. Michael Lewis, the actual author of Moneyball and not just a ghostwriter for Billy Beane's thoughts, is the one who came out with it. If Colin had actually read the book, then he would knew Lewis spent just as much time talking about Paul Depodesta, Scott Hatteberg, Chad Bradford, and Jeremy Brown as he did talking about Beane.

The third dumb statement involved a bet between Colin and his producer who goes by the radio name of Compass. Before the show began, Compass bet Colin a free lunch that the Toronto Raptors would draft Andrea Bargnani with the first pick in the NBA draft. Colin accepted the bet only to have Compass come to him a few minutes later and inform him that the Raptors had hired Maurizio Gherardini, former general manager of Benetton Treviso (Bargnani's Italian team), as assistant general manager and team president, which cam as a shock to Colin.

The Raptors hired Gherardini six days ago. Six days. But a nationally syndicated sports radio host didn't know about it until today.


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