A GRIP ON SPORTS
Like to be sitting in a movie theater and be able to find out who is winning the game you're missing? It's possible these days if you have the right app on your smart phone. Like to be able to find the movie theater in the first place, or the time of the movie, or a list of stars? All are possible with the right app. Pretty cool, huh? Want to see a picture of a public figure in what probably is a totally innocent position and watch it blown completely out of proportion? That's possible too. Such is the yin and yang of modern technology. Read on.
• Just about every cell phone in America has a camera. And that makes just about everyone in America a paparazzi-in-waiting. All it takes is one instance, one image, one click. Private is no longer private. Why am I writing about this? Because my twitter feed blew up over the last few hours with a picture of Washington State football coach Mike Leach in a Key West bar talking with a woman. And that, at it's core, is what the picture shows. But that's not enough for some. Take Deadspin for example. The website did this with that photo and another picture of an autograph Leach reportedly gave the woman. Really? So you can deduce Leach is "macking on a young lady" after looking at the pictures? (And, for you uninitiated – or old – folks out there, macking is a smart-phone-era word equivalent to flirting or more with someone.) I can't. I see a football coach in a local tavern having a drink when a fan asks him about the finer points of his team's passing game. I see it being really loud and the fan having to lean in to hear his answer on whether he believes a screen or draw is better against pressure. That's what I see. Nothing untoward. Nothing to get worked up over. But it's all part of the age we live in. I don't believe there is a person in the world that is immune. Isolate one second in time for anyone and the image of that second might be subject to an interpretation of inappropriate behavior. It's sad really. Context is everything in life but these days context counts for nothing. All that matter is that gotcha moment.
• I also see something else. I also see a really lucky guy. No, not because he's talking with a young lady but because he's wearing shorts and flip-flops (my favorite attire) in the middle of December. And he works in the same area code I do. Not fair. Not fair at all.
• Washington State: The Cougars are back on the hardwood today, with the men hosting horrible Idaho State in Kennewick and the women traveling up U.S. Highway 195 to face Gonzaga in the Kennel. Christian Caple will be in the Tri-Cities and he filed this advance for today's paper and also has a morning blog post with more, including links. Chris Derrick will be at Gonzaga and he has this advance in today's paper as well. ... Speaking of the women, Stanford's top-ranked women will host No. 2-ranked UConn today in a sold-out Maples Pavilion. And the game will be on ESPNU.
• Gonzaga: The GU men played one of their better offensive games of the season last night in holding off Baylor at home, 94-87. The offense was keyed by the 31 points of sophomore guard Kevin Pangos, who did all that while also directing an offense that turned it over just 10 times (just one for Pangos personally). To me, that's the impressive number. Jim Meehan has the game story and a blog post from last night - and another this morning - while John Blanchette adds a column. There are also Tyler Tjomsland's pictures from the game. ... We also found this story from the Waco paper and coverage from ESPN and CBSSports. ... Jim adds this short story on a transfer headed GU's way. ... The WCC has a couple of chances to post some signature non-conference wins today, the biggest of which would be by Santa Clara, which plays at top-ranked Duke. BYU also faces an ACC foe, Virginia Tech.
• Idaho: Who will win the WAC basketball race? Well, here's one prediction that picks Utah State. Probably a safe pick.
• Whitworth: The Pirate women picked up another non-conference victory.
• Chiefs: Chris Derrick has a feature today on one reason why the Chiefs are playing so well. Spokane got back at it Thursday night and won its first game after the Christmas break.. ... So did WHL-leader Portland and Everett.
• Seahawks: One more regular season game for the Hawks. It's at home, where the fans may have not been on their best behavior last week. It's also against the Rams and running back Steven Jackson (pictured), who has never gone over 100 yards in his career against Seattle. It's also a chance for some injured players to get some work in before the playoffs. ... Russell Okung is fulfilling his potential. It wasn't easy.
• Mariners: It's still December, for a few more days anyway. So stay patient.
• That's it for today. And the next time you stop to talk with someone of the opposite sex, look around. Make sure there are no cameras around (or phones for that matter). Then run like hell. Until later ...