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Sunday, October 25, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Grip on Sports: Even the best laid plans never seem to work out when it comes to the Ryder Cup

A view from the back of the grandstand overlooking the 1st tee on the third day of practice for the Ryder Cup at Le Golf National in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, outside Paris, France, Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018. The grandstand seats nearly 7,000 people, the largest at any golf tournament. (John Leicester / Associated Press)
A view from the back of the grandstand overlooking the 1st tee on the third day of practice for the Ryder Cup at Le Golf National in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, outside Paris, France, Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018. The grandstand seats nearly 7,000 people, the largest at any golf tournament. (John Leicester / Associated Press)

A GRIP ON SPORTS • The world of sports is a smaller place these days. Heck, the world seems smaller. Read on.


• Usually the post-midnight crowd never sees me anymore. Not in a lot of years. But last night, there I was, up after midnight. Of course, no one saw me. I wasn’t at a bar or a party or even working.

I was sitting in front of the TV set watching golf. From France.

Golf between the best of the United States – including, but not limited to, Tiger Woods – and Europe – including, but certainly not limited to, some guy named Tyrrell Hatton.

The plan was to watch as much golf as I could, record the rest and go to bed. Get up early and write this column. Watch the DVR. Then crash until late Friday night.

Nice plan. Terrible execution.

It seemed so easy back in the day to stay up all night. Heck, for years I worked from 2 a.m. to 6 a.m. in the family business. Did it occasionally before heading to high school. Subsisted on a few hours of sleep.

But, despite a strong nap game these days and a lot of coffee, staying up after 11 p.m. is just hard. I made it past midnight last night. Not much past, but past midnight. I can prove it. I have documentation in the form of steps between midnight and 1 a.m.

When I crashed, I crashed. But I also woke up at the usual time. And began work.

That’s gone smoothly. The column is nearly done. When it is, I’m going to turn on the DVR as watch as our guys kick some Euro trash to the curb. (At least I think that’s what I will watch. I haven’t checked Twitter even.)

Whether I can stay awake through the four ball is up in the air. And the alternate shot will be tough. At least I put the action on the DVR, so commercials will not come into play. It will be nothing but golf shots. Knowing the Golf Channel’s M.O. – story after story while missing guys throwing darts at the greens – I probably can get through the 10 hours in two or three.


WSU: If you want to spend some time this morning getting to know one of the Cougars’ new receivers, then do we have the story for you. Theo Lawson delved into the past of junior college transfer Calvin Jackson, Jr., one of the stars of the Netflix series, “Last Chance U.” It’s a story you shouldn’t miss. … The Seattle Times takes a quick look at the Utah game. … The soccer team got past Oregon, 2-1, at home. … Utah expects a lot of opportunities to make big defensive plays.

Elsewhere in the Pac-12, the direction of the conference is the main subject as Jon Wilner talked with a couple CEOs. … There is more to life than football, a subject Washington coach Chris Petersen tries to teach. … California didn’t play last week so the Bears aren’t having to deal with the same problem Oregon is: injuries. … Oregon State is dealing with the same problem. And you can add in a defection as well just before the matchup with Arizona State. … USC would like to force a few Arizona turnovers. … Colorado has one element Chip Kelly wishes he had at UCLA: A confident, solid starting quarterback. … The conference’s two best teams play out-of-conference games. Stanford is as Notre Dame. … The conference released the times of league games yesterday and that was big news in some places. The biggest news, though, comes from UCLA where a prized recruit will not be able to play due to a heart condition. You might recognize the last name.

Gonzaga: The Bulldogs begin practice today and Jim Meehan is here to get you ready. He identified four questions the Zags need to answer and gives you his thoughts on them.

EWU: The Montana State defense is not trying to stop the Eagles, it just wants to contain them. … Around the Big Sky, Northern Arizona may have its quarterback back sooner than it thought.

Idaho: Peter Harriman has a great feature this week on David Ungerer, a senior receiver at Idaho. In the “feeling-old” category, I can remember Dave running around the Washington State practice field when his dad was a Cougar assistant. He was the leader of a gaggle of assistant coaches’ kids. And there were a lot of them, let me tell you. … Both the Vandals and Portland State need to win this week.

Chiefs: It’s time for hockey in Spokane. Larry Weir spoke with the voice of the Chiefs, Mike Boyle, for the latest Press Box pod. … Around the WHL, Portland is ready for the season to really get going.

Preps: Mt. Spokane had to use its third-string quarterback last night at Albi Stadium. But it was the Wildcats’ defense that starred in a 13-0 win over Gonzaga Prep. Dave Nichols was there and has this game story.

Horse racing: A successful jockey from the 1970s and 1980s died recently. Jim Price wrote Robert Howg’s obituary.

Seahawks: For those of you holding off judging the Hawks’ offense until Doug Baldwin is back, that might be this Sunday. … Can Seattle really run the ball if Russell Wilson isn’t more involved? Wilson was on the injury list yesterday – as were others – but Earl Thomas wasn’t.

Mariners: Marco Gonzales had a good year. He was the M’s second-best starter, at least. He also suffered starts like last night, when he threw five shutout innings but the Mariners did not score either. And Seattle lost 2-0 to Texas after he left. … Scott Brosius is happy to be back in the big leagues. … That Safeco maintenance money King County agreed to? It may not be on its way.


• So I’m guessing while I am posting this to the website, or as I promo it on Twitter, I will find out what happened overnight. It’s probably impossible to avoid. I have a solution. Play the Ryder Cup ever two years at Indian Canyon or Circling Raven or Gozzer Ranch. That way it’s on during the day. You know, when I’m napping. Until later …

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