2014 Pulitzer Prize Winner
  • Dick Vitale nears retirement. Now that’s reason to rejoice

    Sat, June 29, 2013 by David Ramsey with 2 comments

    ESPN college basketball announcer Dick Vitale recently told Dan Patrick he’s nearing retirement. This news brought joy to my heart. It was a welcome reminder that there is a God in heaven.

    I’m exaggerating, but just a little. I adore basketball, but have suffered for decades through Vitale’s wildly over-the-top announcing style. As he shouted at the limits of his lung power, I often wanted to join him in shouting. I wanted to say, “The game is NOT all about you! And why don’t you turn down the volume, baby!”

    What do you think of college basketball’s loud self-promoter?

  • Athlon picks Air Force football team as 82nd best in country

    Tue, June 25, 2013 by David Ramsey with no comments

    The new Athlon College Football preview is out, and editors pick Air Force’s Falcons to finish third in the Mountain division of the Mountain West behind Boise State and Utah State.

    Air Force is, according to the editors, expected to finish with a 6-6 record (again). Boise State is picked to finish with a perfect 8-0 MWC record. The editors pick Fresno State (coached by Air Force alum Tim DeRuyter) to win the West division.

    Defensive end Alex Hansen was the only Falcon named to Athlon’s All-MWC preseason team. Hansen was a second-team pick.

  • Tim Tebow is a gift to all American sports columnists

    Fri, June 21, 2013 by David Ramsey with 3 comments

    When writing about Tim Tebow, you can be sure of this:

    People will pay attention. And people will get mad.

    He is a polarizing figure. My use of the word polarizing in relation to Tebow has angered some Gazette readers, but Jesus Christ was polarizing. Tebow sends boys and girls, men and women into different camps.

    Here’s what I mean:

    I wrote a column that predicted Patriots coach Bill Belichick will find a limited and valuable role for Tebow in New England’s offense. In the column I criticized Tebow’s left arm. This is obvious criticism. Tebow’s arm is extremely inaccurate by NFL standards.

    I was accused by one Gazette reader of being “Anti-Christian.” That’s one camp.

    Another long-time Gazette reader left a message full of rage on my answering machine. She said I was a Bible thumper. (I’m not sure why.) That’s another camp.

    I welcome criticism. I had a fairly long, laugh-filled conversation with the woman who left the phone message accusing me of being a Bible thumper. I explained my view of Tebow, and we discovered we were in virtual agreement about him.

    I’ve heard from several readers who believe Tebow is done, that he will not play another game in the NFL, that the Patriots will cut him. I don’t agree, but maybe that’s because I don’t want to face the truth.

    Tebow is a gift to sports columnists all across the Land of the Free. Long may he play.

  • Jay Cutler, so beloved in Colorado, marries his sweetheart

    Tue, June 11, 2013 by David Ramsey with no comments

    Jay Cutler, who is well remembered here in Colorado, married his sweetheart Kristin Cavallari over the weekend in Nashville, not far from the stadium where Jay starred as Vanderbilt quarterback.

    Cutler, of course, departed the Broncos after a disagreement with Josh McDaniels. At the time, it seemed Cutler was more immature than McDaniels. Time has led many to believe – and one of those many is me – that Cutler and McDaniels are about equal in the maturity department. Cutler is now quarterback for the Chicago Bears. McDaniels serves as offensive coordinator with the Patriots.

    Here’s a description from US Weekly:

    “In new pictures from their ceremony at Woodmont Christian Church, Cavallari, 26, looked stunning in a strapless white dress and long veil, which she wore with her wavy hair half up. The Monique Lhuillier gown featured a high belt and bustled skirt, and the bride carried a bouquet of white peonies.

    “Her 30-year-old Chicago Bears quarterback groom looked handsome in a gray suit with a white shirt and tie. The couple’s 10-month-old son Camden wore a coordinating little gray suit.”

  • Farewell to George “First-Round Exit” Karl

    Thu, June 6, 2013 by David Ramsey with no comments

    George Karl delivered a strong regular season coaching performance for the Denver Nuggets this season.

    Then he – and the Nuggets – stumbled to their usual first-round exit. This has been the norm since 2003. The Nuggets make the playoffs. The Nuggets say goodbye to the season after the first round. The only exception came in 2009 when the Nuggets traveled to the Western Conference Finals.

    And should have traveled even further.

    Karl tweeted today about the good karma he was experiencing on the streets of Denver, but there was always something wrong with his karma in the playoffs.

    The Nuggets rolled into this season’s first round as clear favorites against the Golden State Warriors. Karl was clearly outcoached by Mark Jackson, and it was painful to watch. Please don’t say anything about Danilo Gallinari’s injury. The Warriors were playing without David Lee, a vastly superior player to Gallinari. The Warriors played a fierce style of basketball. The Nuggets played scared.

    And some – no, make that much – of the blame must be placed on Karl’s shoulders.

    It was time to wave goodbye. Karl had taken four straight first-round exits from the playoffs. The Nuggets need to become more ambitious, and a superb first step would be hiring Lionel Hollins, who just led a hungry, properly violent Memphis Grizzlies team to the Western Conference Finals.

    I’ll miss King George. He was a tremendous interview, one of the best in the game, and he did strong work. But that strong work always seem to fizzle during the playoffs.