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What a Saturday

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Wow. What a Saturday. Gonzaga's men and women in the West Coast Conference tournament. Eastern Washington in the Big Sky tournament. Idaho, the hottest team around, finishing up its regular season. Washington State concluding Pac-12 regular season play against USC, one of the worst teams in recent conference history. And all the state basketball finals, from the Bs in Spokane to the big schools in Tacoma. What a Saturday. I can't remember a Saturday like this one for, what, at least a year? Read on.

Spring can’t be too far away

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Most people believe winter is about over when they see the first robin of spring. Or maybe the first crocus. Not me. I know it's over when I see my first State B basketball game at the Arena. It's more reliable than any bird or flower or even a groundhog. Watch a B game, know that it will only be a couple weeks until the golf course opens. Well the B tourney opened yesterday and I couldn't be happier. Read on.

Time to tip a busy weekend

A GRIP ON SPORTS

It's Thursday. That's a pretty crowded news day in its own right. But it's also the first day of the Washington state basketball tournaments. And it's also a busy college basketball week. With all that being said, no reason to chit-chat. Best to just get on to the news – and links. Read on.

Hey snow, you can leap this

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Around the Inland Northwest, there is a lot of truth to the old saw about March coming in like a lion. And this year did not disappoint. Here it is, the first day of March and there's more snow … wait, what? Leap year? Really. Another damn day of winter? Great. … Anyway, here it is, the final day of Februrary – if Kim is to be believed – and there's more snow on the ground. Though some people connected to our local college basketball programs get to escape to Southern California or Las Vegas this week, land of sunshine, bright lights and Double-Doubles, some of us will be shoveling snow and hoping spring hurries up and gets here. Of course, it will only take longer if the powers-that-be continue adding days to February.  Read on.

Noon, really?

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Really, we were going to bide our time on this subject. Wait until next week to vent. But you can't always control the news cycle. Sometimes your hand is forced by an outside entity. So you have to move before you're ready. Read on.

It’s high school state tourney time

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Really contemplated just sleeping in until about noon today. After the weekend we had in Spokane – there is about a foot of snow on my back deck, though that's mostly in a pile pushed up against the railing due to the wind – and the probable lack of news to pass along, I thought it would be permissible to just skip out on my morning post. But after heading downstairs to let the dog out and seeing the beautiful weather – bright sunshine reflected on pristine snow – it was easy to sit down in front of the computer. Now if there were just more news to pass along. Read on.

Sometimes even winning isn’t winning

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Well, that wasn't a good night if you are a local men's college basketball fan. Unless, of course, your team of choice is Whitworth. Because, on this Saturday, the only local college team that really won was the Pirates. Read on.

Don’t plan too much for today

A GRIP ON SPORTS

What is it about Saturday mornings this time of year? If you want to spend your day cleaning out the garage or showshoeing on Mt. Spokane or golfing in Phoenix, don't click the link. By the time you are done, you'll only have enough time to shower, shave and shine your shoes before heading to dinner and a movie. But who really wants to clean the garage? So go ahead and read on.

The Kennel’s magic is alive and well

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Behold the power of the Kennel. Gonzaga obviously didn't play all that well Thursday night, giving up a battalion of offensive rebounds and turning the ball over 20 times, but they still defeated visiting Brigham Young by 11. That, my friends, is the power of the Kennel. Read on.

BYU, GU face off in WCC’s newest rivalry

A GRIP ON SPORTS

I'm sorry, but I don't get it. How does dressing up in a dark suit and tie for a basketball game constitute hate? Read on.

Zags on a wild ride

A GRIP ON SPORTS

I'm not a rollercoaster guy. Mainly it has to do with heights – to say I hate them is an understatement; it's more like an irrational fear – but it also has to do with the constant up and downs. Speed is fine. Give me a ride that races around corners and stretches the boundaries of centrifugal force anytime. But rollercoasters? No thanks. What does this have to do with sports? I think you know. Read on.

A question on another good day

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Yesterday was a good day. After eating lunch with a bunch of folks and talking sports, got to go on the radio and talk sports for three hours. Then, en route to the Spokane Valley to cover a high school basketball game, got to listen to Bud Nameck and the first part of the Cougar game. After writing, headed home and got to listen to Tom Hudson, Matt Santangelo and the end of the Zag game. Yep, this retired thingee is cool. Read on.

Another title in Gonzaga’s sights

A GRIP ON SPORTS

It happened again. A week ago Zags' nation had changed its name to consternation. The consensus was there was little, if any, chance Gonzaga would be able to catch St. Mary's and win its 12th-consecutive West Coast Conference title. Then the Bulldogs blew out the Gaels on Thursday. And last night, well, last night St. Mary's opened the door to GU and said, "come in."  Read on.

High school hoops a form of time travel

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Spent last night in a high school gym covering a high school basketball game. Seems as if I've spent a lot of my life in high school gyms attending high school basketball games. And seems is reality in this case. Read on.

Don’t forget what day it is

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Unless you've been living under the Rock of Gibraltar, or possibly under Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson's house, you know what today is. It comes fast on the heels of Groundhog's Day and, if you don't want to be stuck under a shadow for six weeks, most of you better get today right. Read on.

Knockout Sunday television

A GRIP ON SPORTS

We're going in a different direction today, one you'll see off and on as the weather warms – and the local sports news thins. We spent much of yesterday afternoon glued to the television, watching a heavyweight fight, though the guys on the screen weren't boxers. It was a knockout though. And it was the best action of the weekend, though I don't believe anyone involved broke a sweat. Read on.

A sick Sunday morning blog post

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Sorry this is so late on this rainy Sunday, but you know that virus I wrote about yesterday, the one that attacked my computer? Well, it somehow jumped through the keyboard and infected me – Tron III anyone? – and now I'm the one running hot, processing information slowly and watching my batteries run down at lightning speed. The computer? It's just fine thank you. Read on.

No more sniffles on the weekend

A GRIP ON SPORTS

I can't prove it, because I'm not a computer doctor, but I'm afraid my computer-machine-thingee caught a virus over the past few days. Running hot, battery problems, slow to get moving. Yep, all the earmarks. But after a day spent reloading the system file and downloading the newest versions of my favorite software – by favorite, I mean most used; there is no value judgment here concerning anyone's products – my machine is back in fine fettle. Which means I can return to writing my drivel for you. Read on.

Well, got that one wrong

A GRIP ON SPORTS

OK, I'll admit it. I picked St. Mary's to win last night. When asked my choice on the Patchin, Lukens and Osso radio show (featuring Vince Grippi), I went with the Gaels. What was I thinking? Well, read on and I'll tell you.

It’s Rivalry Thursday

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Yep, it's Rivalry Thursday in Spokane. The best rivalry on the West Coast (that's your opinion, as per our poll from yesterday) is about to tipoff the second of what may be three matchups this seasons. Tonight's edition comes from the McCarthey Athletic Center, home of the loudest, rowdiest, most intimidating crowd in the West Coast Conference. Or is it? That's what I'm asking you to decide today in our poll (with a hat tip to Jim Meehan, who made the suggestion when we were chatting on the radio yesterday afternoon). Read on.

•••

Times change but complaining doesn’t

A GRIP ON SPORTS

For the first time in quite a while, we're suffering through a tough Internet day. It's tough to connect with sites, it's tough to tweet, it's just tough to do anything. And we know it's our problem because it's intermittent. So we're working on it while we type – and by working on it, we mean we're ignoring it for now hoping it will fix itself. Read on.

Take a breath; the rest of the week is better

A GRIP ON SPORTS • UPDATED: 11:55 A.M.

Today is not what you would call a compelling sports day. Really. Caught in the malaise that is post Super Bowl week, the sporting world took 24 hours to catch its breath. Sort of. Read on.

There’s a shadow on local hoops

A GRIP ON SPORTS

So we are supposed to have six more weeks of winter, right? Well if it's anything like the preceding six weeks, I'm fine with that. Other than a couple days, this has been an easy winter to navigate in the Inland Northwest. Now for the basketball around the area, that hasn't been as warm. Read on.

Signing day revs up local schools’ fans

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Last year I trekked up U.S. 195 to Northern Quest Casino for Washington State's signing day get-together. This year all I had to do was drive from home. But there was a lot more that was different to the event than just a much shorter drive. Read on.

It’s Signing Day. You can open your presents now

A GRIP ON SPORTS

Like a lot of you, I read before I go to sleep at night. Sometimes it's a book – right now I have sort of started Stephen King's 11/22/63 – and sometimes it's Twitter or Google news. Last night it was Sports Illustrated. A statistic contained within hit my eye. Read on.

Sweet decisions coming soon

A GRIP ON SPORTS

On this last day of January, 2012, I would like to commit to having a chocolate doughnut for breakfast. In a few minutes, however, I may switch my commitment to a glazed one. By the time I'm done writing, though, I may either be back to chocolate or have decided on toast. Read on.

A Monday morning rant from the woods

A GRIP ON SPORTS

We've said this more than once. Monday mornings after NFL season are the light days when it comes to sports on the web. But does that deter us? No way. We've found enough items to make your morning interesting. To make Monday morning interesting. Is that an oxymoron? Read on.

Looking back on a hoop Saturday

A GRIP ON SPORTS

It seems like about the same time every morning I hear sirens near the old homestead. It doesn't matter whether it's a weekday or weekend, about this time some sirens pop up in the background and heads off into the distance. My guess: It's a police officer who is also a sports fan realizing he has to get back to the station as quick as possible to read his morning Grip on Sports. That's my theory and I'm sticking to it. Read on.

There’s a comforting sameness to high school hoops

A GRIP ON SPORTS

I've spent a lot of time in high school gyms over the years, from my own high school days through the games as a fan to times when I've been in them as a reporter. Last night was one of those reporting times. And little has changed. Read on.