A Look Around
By Jim Alderson, 7/17/00

Okay, folks, a question for today: Do you think Bobby Labonte can hold off Earnhart and win his first championship? Come on now, don’t mince words, and tell us what you really think. On second thought, never mind.

Gee, wasn’t that fun? When we air a divergence of opinion here at Hokie Central we don’t screw around. We sure aren’t that homogenous Canes board screeching in unison, as they tend to do every July, ‘We’re back’ (BTW, is anybody really sure they are actually posting? It reads exactly as it did last year at this time, leading one to wonder if, to save time and energy for more important issues, such as griping about their offense, Grassy isn’t simply recycling last year’s rendition of ‘Anything you can do, we can do Backer.’ Just for fun, how about somebody getting up a pool as to when we are first regaled with that other Cane favorite, heard more often every September these half-decades than ‘Moon over Miami,’ that soothing lullaby, ‘Next Year’).

We’re not like the Hoos, either, who seem to be demonstrating those superior academic credentials they so dearly love to crow about and picking apart the game of our Michael Vick, certainly a more challenging intellectual exercise than finding fault with their own quarterback. One does wonder if they are not grasping at the straws they use to sip their mixed drinks, since, unlike we Hokies who take our Wild Turkey straight out of the bottle, for the last fourteen years they have been watering down their Virginia Gentleman with liberal doses of Seven-up. That is a serious amount of uncola, but not enough, it would seem, to prevent the brown liquor from affecting their short-term memory, from about last October.

Looking across the border, we notice the hills of West Virginia are alive with posters abandoning their own board to come hang around with us. The turgid nature of that board is certainly driving Mz. Daisy and others to ours, and leads me to wonder about its health, although a checkup would be out of the question since their doc is now on holiday down at NC State. We could send our own practitioner of the conference arts over for a house call. No doubt his Rx of how wonderful things will be about 2005 or so when Marshall becomes a conference rival will have them up and Ryaning to go in no time.

And speaking of veiled references to the boys in light blue, wasn’t that searching for the new Anointed One a hoot? Take my job. Please. Dean, seeing the need to whip Carolina into shape and end the current malaise (only two Final Fours in three years? Adios, Bill) of a program that might tower over those little Devils in Durham but no longer can beat them and in the losing runs a tempo so slow it often seems as if their heels are stuck in tar, put his beloved legacy on a Gut-buster and issued the call to domes to the faithful, only to be met with an ever-lengthening chorus of refusals to enter Blue Heaven. ‘Paradise Lost’ indeed. As Waiting for Roy concluded its short run to something less than box-office and critical acclaim and Dean’s Inferno moved on through Acts II, III, IV and V, I was hoping the Killer D’s (Dean and Dickie) would keep pruning the branches off that family tree until they got to Serge Zwicker. It would have been fun listening to the explanations about how he was the best man for the job. Does Troy Murphy feel like an idiot, or what? Here’s hoping the transition to the new Irish coach takes at least longer than their visit to the Cassell.

While observing the many goings and few second comings down in the old north state, I notice that Wolpack AD Les Robinson has tired of looking pretty foolish as Typhoid Marye Ann runs the show and has chosen to maroon himself on the island of the Citadel, only slightly closer to the athletic mainstream than Gilligan’s. Does this mean VMI will now be coming after Jim Weaver? He could probably score that CAA membership pretty quickly. Somehow I doubt Robinson’s giving up and throwing his carcass to those wolves constantly baying at the moon pie in the sky of an ESA for it is going to start a trend. Hopefully Frank is not contemplating heading back to Murray State.

One thing is certain: if anybody is ready for football season it is we. But, darn it, we still have six weeks to go. How do we occupy our time until A27? I must confess that I have never once listened to any Milli Vanilli ( I am currently listening to Joe Cocker’s ‘I Shall be Released’ and wondering if Will, as he surveys the message board wreckage, is not pondering just that in regards to my columns) and have no opinion whatsoever, which is perhaps to the good. Any members of the Flat Earth Society around? Anybody know why the sky is blue? Who caught the last ‘Arliss’? How good is Adibi going to be, anyway? I must confess that my interest in ****** declines markedly when September 1 arrives, and this year the first of September is arriving in late August, but it still is not soon enough. Come on, football season.

Jim Alderson, best known for his biting political commentary on the A-Line email newsletter, also brings a unique, sarcastic, and well-informed perspective on college sports, particularly (1) Virginia Tech sports and (2) ACC sports.  While Hokie fans currently have very little use for subject number 2, Alderson is an entertaining and informative columnist on subject number 1.  For even more fun, visit Jim's A-Line home page.


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