Last year I begged Bill Plaschke to stop making predictions. Now he says the Trojans may be the best team in the nation. Here are my predictions for him:
Sometime next month he will predict the Trojans will win the college football playoffs.
After their first loss, he will declare that their season is effectively over.
At the end of the regular season, he will argue that they should be in the CFP.
No, the Trojans are far from the best team in the nation. I love Trojans, but if you’ve seen what I’ve seen (Trojan vs. Stanford) USC was lucky to win this game.
So USC beats unrated Stanford by 13 points, and Bill Plaschke says the Trojans could be the best team in the nation; and the subheading of the Times reads “Team Dominates”. Just another issue of Trojan Times.
Martin A Brower
Corona Del March
Is USC the best offensive team in the nation? Possibly. But could it be the best team in the nation? Not yet. Watching Saturday’s game, Stanford’s new offense shoved the Trojans’ defense around all night. If the Cardinal hadn’t made some early errors near the Trojans’ goal line, the result might have been 42 for Stanford, the Trojans 41. Will the Trojans be an exciting team? Definitely yes. But are they #1? Not as long as Bryce Young and his boys can comment on that.
How the Kimbrel crumbles
Despite winning the NL West, the Dodgers are still in a dogfight with the Astros for baseball’s best record, which will give them home field advantage should they reach the World Series. Dave Roberts doesn’t seem to be aware of this fact.
Wednesday night he rested Mookie Betts, Trea Turner, Freddie Freeman and Justin Turner — the majority of the team’s offensive production. Worse, Roberts brought in the unpredictable Craig Kimbrel to pitch the 10th inning, even though Evan Phillips had only thrown seven pitches in the ninth. Predictably, Kimbrel handed a two-out, three-run homer to the weak-batting Diamondbacks to lose the game.
When will Roberts open his eyes to what everyone already knows? Kimbrel isn’t the pitcher he once was and is no longer a viable option as he gets closer.
This year’s failed Kimbrel experiment brings back memories of others. Nearly 30 years ago, the Dodgers acquired Cardinals seamer Todd Worrell – at the end of his career. By May I knew he was done, but it took the Dodger manager until the end of July to find out. Then in 2017, Brandon McCarthy inexplicably made the playoff list despite having had an absolutely horrible year. Roberts brought him in the 11th inning of a tied Game 2 of the World Series. Instant Defeat.
With his overall performance, there’s no way Kimbrel is going to get any closer in the playoffs. I’m not sure if he should even be on the list.
Why are the Dodgers celebrating wildly for winning a weak NL West Division when most NBA teams barely acknowledge having won a conference championship after three rounds of playoffs?
Baseball players will argue that because the season is so drawn out, they should be rewarded for every accomplishment. But the NBA season also lasts six months, and despite playing half as many games, teams travel more and basketball players expend more energy in a quarter of the game than baseball players, who spend 95% of their games either sitting or standing on the field hereabouts.
So let’s hope none of the Dodgers’ star players get hurt by patting themselves on the back before The playoffs are even beginning so they might achieve something truly celebratory.
It’s great to see UCLA finally sticking to a strict no-conference schedule. Alabama is a worthy opponent to gauge Chip Kelly and the Bruins’ progress. Oh wait – they’re playing South Alabama and Alabama State, not the Crimson Tide? In the words of Roseanne Roseannadanna – never mind!
No golden moment for Silver
Dear Adam Silver,
Your suspension and fine from Robert Sarver is an embarrassment to your leadership. His $10 million fine, based on his $800 million net worth, is equivalent to someone making $100,000 being fined $1,250. His one-year suspension is inexplicable. Donald Sterling was rightfully removed from the NBA for the same behavior. Sarver’s racist, misogynistic and harassing behavior at all levels of society should not be tolerated. By allowing Sarver to remain in the league, he is shouting that this behavior is acceptable going forward. Shame on you silver.
99 (yard) problems
Seriously Justin Herbert? If you’ve tried to channel your inner Jean van de Velde, then you’ve really succeeded.
So MLB thinks baseball will be more exciting if the shift is eliminated? Maybe, but instead how about players improving their game and learning to score on all courts like Freddie Freeman, Tony Gwynn, Ichiro Suzuki and Rod Carew to name a few? Or will you become adept at bunting for a guaranteed single on the open side of the infield like Max Muncy did a few nights ago?
Most of today’s baseball players seem to have atrophied into one-dimensional hitters, swinging for the fences and hitting at a rate that’s increased 50% in the last 16 years. MLB wants more hits and more excitement? Don’t mute the game. Get hitters to learn to hit where they don’t.
It took me almost an hour, an older but at least somewhat tech-savvy person, to add Amazon Prime for the game Chargers to my older TV. I can’t imagine how the average fan would do this, let alone add and pay for another subscription.
That and the fact that each commercial was a request for free money to become a sports bettor/gambler is of great concern in a streaming world that requires 10 different subscriptions for what used to be just a nice afternoon of sports in the local television was.
Corona del Mar
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https://www.latimes.com/sports/story/2022-09-17/reader-letters-sports-usc-football-dodgers Letters to Sports: USC isn’t the best team in college football