Tom Sorensen

Short takes: Urban Meyer’s last day; Ryan Kalil; fantasy football; next NASCAR CEO

Ohio State suspended coach Urban Meyer last week for the team’s first three games after an investigation into allegations that he mishandled domestic-assault accusations made against a former assistant.
Ohio State suspended coach Urban Meyer last week for the team’s first three games after an investigation into allegations that he mishandled domestic-assault accusations made against a former assistant. AP

The most powerful people in sports are college coaches. They are the most recognizable adults on any campus. As long as they win, adoring alumni fete them, and booster club members all but take a knee when they approach.

The coaches are accustomed to telling teenagers what to do. As long as they win frequently, they are accustomed to telling their schools what to do, too. So when highly successful (on the field) football coach Urban Meyer leaves Ohio State, it will be his idea. …

▪  I realized I was spending too much time on fantasy football. So I quit – one league. That was tough, because I like the people in it, and because I’m due to finally win the thing. I’m now in a mere three leagues, all of which are run by a relative or friend. It’s a pretty cool fall hobby, frankly.. …

▪  A Carolina Panther we don’t talk about much is center Ryan Kalil. He’s 33, has been a Panther since 2007, and this season will be his last. I’m not sure we’ll appreciate his value until he’s gone.

Fellow offensive lineman Jordan Gross retired in February of 2014. We didn’t realize how much he was missed until the 2014 season began.

Like Gross, Kalil is a leader and a teacher and a good guy. Like most offensive linemen, Kalil (like Gross) is among the funniest guys on the team. …

▪  If NASCAR came to me and said, “Pick one guy to replace Brian France and turn our enterprise from a ma-and-pa business into a more pragmatic one,” I’d think for up to 10 seconds and say, “Ray Evernham.” . …

▪  I don’t mind when college football coaches refuse to announce their starting quarterback. We can all use a little intrigue. But instead of getting offended when they get asked about who will start, and they will get asked and they should get asked, make a show out of it. The coaches started it.

Have the potential quarterback starters sit down, so you can’t tell how tall they are, before the media arrives. Use a pitch format changer to disguise their voices. Heck, disguise yours. Have the quarterbacks wear dark hoods. And then point to the starter. And then kick the media out by putting food in another room. And only when the media is gone have the candidates stand.

Tom Sorensen is a retired Charlotte Observer columnist. Sign up for his newsletter, and follow him on Twitter: @tomsorensen

More from this issue of the Tom Talks newsletter:

  Comments