Edition#1: Aspects of the Bulldog Spirit

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The Good:Henderson’s Bulldog Spirit:
I saw Mikey Henderson (Georgia Bulldogs) make a stunning punt return for a touchdown Saturday; only he released the ball before the end zone in a major case of ‘premature celebration’. Now, after I’d stopped yelling at the dumb-ass stunt, I just looked at the image of the guy on the bench and … well you had to feel for the kid.

So how great that – on the very next series – Henderson gets a repeat chance and slams another ‘copy-cat’ punt-return straight down the throats of Western Kentucky (ok, not a major player).

That’s the kind of character you want to see in an athlete … it’s not a failure if you get out there and fix it. Are you listenin’ TeamUSA?

The Bad:Agassi goes down fighting
Agassi – now retired from the major tennis scene. Some losses mean more than others and here a competent Benjamin Becker performance left Andre Agassi – in his 21st US Open – facing the stark truth; there comes a time when will power and talent and courage are not enough, when the gas simply runs out.

But it was tennis – not Agassi – that was the loser today, as the last great American tennis star who arrived in two-decades ago in a brash rush of testosterone and adrenalin finally departed with tears of sadness and gratitude, thanking the loyal fans who had supported him over the past two decades of excellence.

“You have given me your shoulders to stand on to reach for my dreams, dreams I could never have reached without you,” Agassi exclaimed in an emotional farewell speech. “Over the last 21 years, I have found you, and I will take you and the memory of you with me for the rest of my life.”

Tennis is losing a major personality and attraction, with mega endorsements. But more than that, it’s slipping from the sporting consciousness of a nation; and not just any nation either.

The thing about the Americans … once you’ve had one around … is the place kinda feels empty when they aren’t around anymore; tennis, will have to get used to life in the big house unless Roddick can find a way to step-up a level.

The Ugly: Folding sox — The State of the Redsox Nation: Three wheels on ma’ wagon, but I’m still rollin’ along. Two wheels … one wheel … no wheels on this wagon and I’m not rollin’ along …

My lord this story keeps on getting worse.

First Matt Clement and Tim Wakefield are crocked … but hey who needs pitching we can hit for candy … we’re still rollin’.

Then the young studs hit the wall … okay well if Lester and Papelbon and Declaramen are struggling we just gotta hit harder. Right?

Then Varitek and Nixon go down and the wheels fall off right the Redsox cart. They roll-over for the Yankees at Fenway. Manny chucks it for a gammy knee. Ortiz’s dodgy pec gives him ticker-tock.

And finally the white-flag goes up on high as the front-office trade Wells to the Padres (who are at least still contenders).

Come on guys. Is the party over yet? Can we put the 2004 ticker tape boxes away now and brush up all that confetti. It’s time to line-up all those building blocks, those prospects and irons in the fires and get together a team for NOW (well, yeah okay, next Spring … lets not rush ‘eh).

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