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When is the right time?

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Don't worry. I'm not using this forum to go on about gun rights or gun control or any other divisive argument out there. Heck, there are enough just in the world of sports to keep me busy. Read on.


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• Yes, I have my views about the Second Amendment (and the First and the Tenth and all the ones in-between and after), but we're not sharing them here. Unless the newspaper wants to pay me to, of course. I am, first and foremost, a capitalist, even before being a sports guy. This little lead-in comes on the heels of Bob Costas' Sunday night halftime talk concerning gun control (the video is available on the linkm though it loads slowly), an outside-of-the-sporting-realm lecture that has ticked off a lot of people – and emboldened others. I have my opinions on such items, but this is a forum for discussion on local sports and that's what it will remain. And that's what bothers me about what Costas did. I will defend his right to speak with every fiber of my being, whether I agree with him or not. But his choice of forum seems a bit unethical – and condescending (or is it conceited, I'm not sure – actually it's both). The ethics of the matter are simple: You are given a platform to talk about sports. That platform has made you famous and rich. People value your opinion – about sports. If you want to talk about gun control – or any other non-sports-related subject – have your agent get you on a CNN or Fox talk show – you have the juice – and talk about it. Sure, you won't make as many waves, but you can put your feelings on record. As for the condescending part, Costa seems to have assumed sports fans don't have a brain and don't have opinions on gun control or gun rights. Of course they do. Some very intelligent folks watch the NFL and also feel deeply about both sides of the issue. I'm sure they appreciated a lecture from a guy who carries a Mickey Mantle baseball card in his wallet. But Costas is paid a lot of money to share his opinion – on sports. It's when his hubris leads him to believe Mr. and Mrs. American Football Fan care what he has to say on other items, he's crossed a line. And will now be known in a lot of quarters not for his ability to describe a well-turned double play but as that “gun control guy.” And that's too bad.

• By the way, feel free to disagree with me if you like. There is room for differing opinions here. And if you think it is ironic that, on a blog dedicated to sports, I've started is a discussion about the how wrong it is to inject personal views on non-sports related issues in a sports setting, I get it too. I really do.

•••

• Washington State: There's kind of a big game down in Pullman tonight and Christian Caple has an advance. He also has a morning post and will hold a live chat this afternoon. … You can also win tickets to the Hardwood Classic. … So, with all the coaching news yesterday – if you had Brett Bielema in your Arkansas coaching pool, you win – when will Colorado and California fill their vacancies? … This just might be the best story of the day. Worth spending your time on if you care about all the coaching vacancies and the hype surrounding them.

• Gonzaga: Besides the game in Pullman tonight, there was also a matchup of local teams, with the GU women defeating Eastern in the Kennel last night. Chris Derrick was there and has this story. … USF is probably going to be pretty good if last night's win over St. John's is any indication. … Portland gave UNLV all it wanted last night as well.

• EWU: As you might guess, Jim Allen has a lot of words concerning the Eagles' FCS quarterfinal matchup with Illinois State. He caught up with Luke Huard, the Redbirds' offensive coordinator who hails from a well-known family in Northwest football. Jim also has the news about offensive tackle Will Post (above) being named All-America. … There was some basketball news as well. … Chris' women's basketball notebook leads with an Eagle who is a gym rat.

• Idaho: A basketball player at Utah State collapsed at practice yesterday and had to be hospitalized, so tonight's game with BYU is up in the air.

• Chiefs: The eastern swing has been just swell for the Chiefs thus far, as they won their third consecutive game last night. … The Winterhawks, behind four goals by the WHL's player of November, won again.

• Preps: Basketball season hit its stride last night. Greg Lee leads the way with his coverage of Gonzaga Prep's win, part of the GSL boys' roundup. We also have a GSL girls roundup and roundups of girls and boys action from around the area.

• Seahawks: Even though the Hawks are not that far out of first place in their division, yesterday was dominated by roster news and injuries, from a name player cut and an offensive lineman disabled.

• Mariners: There is so many rumors and whispers concerning the M's and just about every hitter in America, it's hard to keep track of all of them. Same with contract talks with their best pitcher. … A former M's hitter will have a restaurant named after him – and the winner of his award is sort of ironic, considering the M's trade and free agent talks. … The Mariners do have some prospects.

•••

• That's it for this morning. We tried to focus on sports as per our charge. I guess we failed miserably. Until later …


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Jim Allen (@srjimallen) Sports reporter Jim Allen's primary coverage areas are Eastern Washington University football and men's basketball, and college and high school soccer. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Jacob Thorpe (@JacobThorpe) Sports reporter Jacob Thorpe covers Washington State University athletics. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Chris Derrick Chris Derrick is a sports reporter. His primary coverage areas are the Spokane Chiefs, Spokane Indians, women's basketball and high school softball and volleyball. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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John Blanchette (@SRjblanchette) John Blanchette is a freelance writer who covers the University of Idaho football team and men's basketball team.

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