2014 Pulitzer Prize Winner
  • Hard fouls require severe punishment

    Thu, January 29, 2009 by David Ramsey with no comments

    It’s well known. The lane in the NBA is a dangerous place to arrive. If you come ripping into the lane, you might get attacked.

    That’s what happened to Charlotte’s Gerald Wallace. He was driving to the basket, just minding his own business, when he was attacked by the Lakers Andrew Bynum. You can employ euphemisms to describe the play, say it was just a “hard  foul” or “aggressive basketball” but those euphemisms hide the ugly truth.

    It was an assault. Bynum deserves a two-game suspension, and the NBA must devise a play to banish this brand of basketball. There’s no place for this brand of violence in any basketball arena.

    To see the play, click here:

    http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/blog/ball_dont_lie/post/Video-Bynum-s-hard-foul-sends-Gerald-Wallace-to?urn=nba,137304

  • Serratore attacks me, again

    Tue, January 27, 2009 by David Ramsey with no comments

    Frank Serratore launched into yet another public attack on me at his press conference on Monday. He accused me, once again, of being too positive. He thinks I’m too soft on his Air Force Falcons hockey team.

    He went so far as to call me the “Fred Rogers of Air Force hockey.” Most of you remember Fred Rogers, the friendly guy in the cardigan who was the lead resident of “Mr. Rogers Neighborhood” for so many years on PBS. Fred loved everyone, offered kindness to everyone and, to tell you the truth, kind of got on my nerves. Fred would have found something positive to say about Bill Belichick’s personality. That’s how positive Fred was.

    Serratore didn’t stop there. He said whenever he feels the urge to be negative with his players, he looks at a bracelet on his wrist that has the letters “WWDD” on it.

    WWDD stands for What Would David Do, he said. After he sees the letters, he speaks kind, friendly and  positive words to his players.

  • Carmelo and Nuggets

    Fri, January 23, 2009 by David Ramsey with no comments

    Carmelo Anthony has led the Denver Nuggets to five straight first-round exits in the NBA playoffs.

    There’s every reason to believe this is the season he will – finally – lead the Nuggets to at least one victory in a playoff series.

    The Nuggets have won five games and lost three with Anthony sitting the bench nursing his broken hand. When Anthony returns – most likely on Jan.  30 – the Nuggets will own the depth and might to tangle with any team in the Western Conference.

    Well, except Los Angeles. The Lakers are clearly the best team in the West.

    But even with the Lakers, there’s reason to dream. The Nuggets play the kind of rugged, defense-first basketball that keeps teams alive in the playoffs. With Chauncey Billups and Kenyon Martin hassling Kobe Bryant, the Lakers could be taken down.

    You can look at Anthony’s playoff record two ways. Yes, he’s been the leader in the franchise’s conversion from awful to respectable.

    But it’s time to take the next step. Anthony has grown as a player. He’s no longer obsessed with points. He’s following Billups lead and playing a complete, unselfish game.

    And, remember, this is the same Carmelo Anthony who placed the Syracuse University Orangemen on his shoulders and carried them to a national title.

  • Jim Arthur and Air Force

    Thu, January 22, 2009 by David Ramsey with 11 comments

    Listened to the last two Air Force basketball games and came away with two conclusions.

    1. At this point  of the season, the Falcons are really bad.

    2. Jim Arthur is a solid, entertaining, objective-without-being-boring broadcaster.

    Arthur isn’t some clueless, rah-rah, my-team-can-do-no-wrong homer. (If you want the point of  view of the blinded-by-love homers, check out AFA’s fan message board. Note: Not every person who posts on the message board is a blinded-by-love homer. There are plenty of intelligent posts. The blinded-by-love homers know who they are.)

    He’s a strong storyteller, able to bring the drama of the arena straight into your living room.

    He doesn’t get caught up with the referees and blame everything on them.

    “That’s a good call. Easy to see,” Arthur said Saturday after an offensive foul on AFA’s Evan Washington.

    “Wow. I thought Langford got all ball,” Arthur said after a questionable call on Texas Christian.

    In short, he’s accurate.

    And he’s not afraid to criticize a team that needs criticizing.

    AFA’s free throw shooting, Arthur said, is enough to make you sick.

  • Armstrong and Dara Torres

    Tue, January 20, 2009 by David Ramsey with no comments

    Lance Armstrong decided in July to chase another Tour de France title.

    Dara Torres helped give him  even more resolve in August.

    Torres, 41, competed in her fifth Olympics this summer. She skipped the 2004 Olympics,  but came back as strong as ever in 2008.

    “He was definitely very impressed by Dara,” said Chris Carmichael, who serves as Armstrong’s trainer.

  • Tigers woes

    Sat, January 17, 2009 by David Ramsey with no comments

    I’ve asked several hockey experts to explain Colorado College’s tumble from the nation’s No.  1 team to a confused and confusing hockey team that has forgotten how to win.

    Every one of the experts responds the same way. Shrug of shoulders. Confused look on face. And the words:

    “I don’t know.”

    It’s baffling. The pieces are there for greatness, or close to it. For some reason – and no one has been able to explain the reasons to me – the pieces aren’t fitting.

  • Playing hurt

    Wed, January 14, 2009 by David Ramsey with no comments

    News flash from San Diego:

    Chargers cornerback Antonio Cromartie played the entire season with a fractured hip. He suffered the injury in the season opener against the Broncos.

    We soon will hear praise for Cromartie’s toughness and he deserves the praise. He is tough.

    I’m not so sure about his wisdom. Playing hurt is considered a sacred quest, a way to prove how much you love your teammates and the game.

    But playing hurt destroys careers. Elite athletes have only so many years at the pinnacle,  and they often recklessly toss away a few of those years.

    Kevin McHale is one of the smoothest, sneakiest post players ever to play basketball. He’s also one of my favorites. He grabbed attention and admiration by playing in the 1987 Finals with a broken right foot. He wanted to beat the Lakers so badly he risked his health and his career.

    In 2004, I covered the Nuggets in a playoff series against the Minnesota Timberwolves, which employs McHale. I saw McHale several times, and each time he was dragging around  that right foot. He walked with all the grace of 99-year-old man.

    He had, no doubt, been courageous to brave the pain and take his foot into basketball battle. He had also been foolish.

    For years, McHale said he had no regrets, but he later spoke the truth to the Boston Globe’s  Jackie McMullen.

    “Now I look at it and say, ‘If I could do it  all  over again,  I wouldn’t do it. I wouldn’t play.’ ”

    Cromartie - and any other injured athlete – should listen to McHale.

  • Josh McDaniels dad … and Maurice Clarett

    Tue, January 13, 2009 by David Ramsey with no comments

    Thom McDaniels, father of new Broncos coach Josh McDaniels, is one of the great high school coaches in Ohio’s football history.

    And at Warren Harding High, Thom McDaniels coached one of the great high school  runners in Ohio – or American – football history.

    Maurice Clarett.

  • New Broncos coach and booze

    Mon, January 12, 2009 by David Ramsey with no comments

    Finished reading a few columns on new Broncos coach Josh McDaniels and found one consistent thread in the articles.

    Denver columnists believe McDaniels will have to show I.D. before purchasing alcohol.

  • Pizza place says goodbye to Mastermind

    Wed, January 7, 2009 by David Ramsey with no comments

    Had to pass along the message on Old Chicago’s neon sign at Academy and Austin Bluffs:

    “Mike, Thanks for the Super Bowls and  Maurice Clarett.”

    That’s brief, accurate summary of Mike Shanahan’s career.