Category Archives: Sports

ThePutt

58, 54, the Par That Got Away, and Texas A&M Basketball Coaches

ThePuttNext Saturday will be the six-year anniversary of my venture into the world of golf. I was reminded of this when Mark M., on Facebook, when he noted that his Wichita State Shockers had won another game in the NCAA Basketball Tournament and I reminded him that I was happy for him, just as long as Texas A&M hired away their coach the way they did with Mark Turgeon back in 2007. All of that got me to thinking about how all that came about, about taking up golf and about how my game is doing now, six years later.

Continue reading

Super Bowl Electrifying!

Yes, since there was a power outage, you can expect all kinds of headlines with the energy theme involved. Deanna Watson Miller, the editor of the Times Record News, the paper I worked for in the 1990s, pointed it out on Facebook, and I had to jump over to check out what the TRN had on their web page:

Continue reading

Aggies-Longhorn Game a Matter of Law?

AndyTEX011Apparently a Texas legislator has filed a bill in the house that would require Texas A&M and the t.u. longhorns to play football every year. If you will recall, the t-sips opted out of the rivalry after A&M bolted the Big 12 for the SEC because A&M was tired of the bully tactics of the t-sips. In a snit, the t-sips refused to play A&M any longer, even though A&M was ready to keep the rivalry alive.

Continue reading

Alabama Rolls To National Championship!

OK, there is my prediction. Let me be on record, I’m picking Alabama to win the National Championship tonight over Notre Dame. And while I’m not a professional sportswriter, or even an amateur sports writer, my pick is just as valid as the boys over at ESPN.

Gene Wojciechowski over at ESPN gives 10 reasons Notre Dame wins the National Championship. You can tell he is stretching because he says Notre Dame’s quarterback is a whole lot like Texas A&M’s Johnny Manziel. Really? I really don’t remember anyone mentioning Everett Golson in the same breath as the Heisman Trophy. I’m surprised he didn’t make the logical jump that Notre Dame beat Oklahoma. A&M beat Oklahoma. A&M beat Alabama, therefore Notre Dame will beat Alabama. It would have been as good as any of the other reasons he gives.

Ivan Maisel gives his 10 reasons ‘Bama wins and I think they are more convincing. The number one reason he gives is that ‘Bama has the experience. That alone counts for at least 14 points in my book. But it’s not just experience in National Title games, it is experience in big games every week. Yes, Notre Dame had to rise from the ashes to get to this point. But let’s face it, when they went into play a team like the Sooners, the Sooners were not thinking that they were playing a national powerhouse. ‘Bama has been a national powerhouse for years, and managed to keep that moniker because they are so good. For all we really know about Notre Dame, they’ve had to have some really lucky games to remain undefeated. I’m not trying to take away from their season. They’ve had a great season. But I don’t think it will be enough to beat ‘Bama.

Texas Aggies Finish Dream Season, 41-13 over Oklahoma Sooners in Cotton Bowl Victory

CottonTrophyYes, it is the end of a dream season. As I watched Heisman trophy winner Johnny Manziel dance along the sidelines for the opening touchdown, I could not help but feel like I was living in a dream. The Texas A&M Aggies were finishing up their season in 77th Cotton Bowl against Number 11 ranked Oklahoma Sooners. It was a close game at the half with the Aggies leading 14-13.

The second half, the Sooners had no answer for Johnny Manziel and company. The Aggies went on to score 27 unanswered points in the second half and the defense stepped up and kept the Sooners off the score board. More than that, they kept the Sooners off the field. The Sooners first two possessions in the second half ended without first downs and punting the ball away. At one point, the Sooners only managed 17 yards in the second half.

That was when the dream-like feeling really came over me because I realized that the Aggies not only were going to win, going 11-2 for the season, that they had the Heisman Trophy winner leading the way, but that they were NOT going to blow it. The win was in the bag and there was nothing the Sooners could do to avoid the thrashing. It was sweet.

And it was fun. Watching Manziel run the ball made it a true joy. He is a fun player to watch, which is one of the reasons he won the Heisman. He doesn’t just put up the numbers, but he does it in a fun way to watch. It made the game almost surreal. Nice, but surreal.

On top of that, Manziel went on to help the Aggies with 599 yards of total offense, a Cotton Bowl record. I’m sure there are some other records that I’m missing, but it is late.

I did want to add a few of the tweets posted at ESPN. It’s quite revealing what some of the sports writers are thinking:

He beat Bama. He won the Heisman. He conquered the Cotton Bowl. Johnny Football became a legend this season. — ESPN

Johnny Football starts his 2013 heisman campaign tonight in spectacular fashion.If you didn’t know – now you know. Jonathan Coachman

The Cotton Bowl was a one-point game at the half. aTm’s halftime adjustment was to open up a can. Michael Smith

The “SEC” chants have given way to “Johnny” chants. Richard Durrett

This is one of the greatest individual bowl performances I’ve ever seen. Johnny Football is living up to his nickname and his Heisman. Skip Bayless

I hope next year is better than this one, although I’m not looking forward to it yet. I’m too busy enjoying the end results of this season. A winning program with an 11-2 record and a Heisman winner returning to play quarterback next season.  That is a dream season, especially for Aggies every where. We have had such a long draught when it comes to being successful. Hopefully it will be a long time before we taste the draught again.

Thoughts on Johnny Heisman!

Manzielnumber2Yes, Johnny Football Manziel is now being called Johnny Heisman! I love it! Johnny Mania is taking over at A&M, and it could not have come at a better time. I think what makes the fact that Manziel won the Heisman in the first place is because it was so unexpected. Most Heisman winners start out the year on some arbitrary list. But Manziel was barely on the list for starting quarterbacks at Texas A&M. We didn’t know what to expect from him or the Aggies this year, and because of Manziel, his ability as a quarterback and his attitude of never giving up, that all changed as the season progressed.

I remember when his name came up in the same sentence as a Heisman contender. It was just after the Ol’ Miss game in which the Aggies came from behind in the fourth quater to win the game. I think that was when it was first mentioned. It was a signal to us that the Aggies were no longer the team to lose in the last few minutes, like there were last year. With that win, we saw the never-say-die attitude of this red-shirt freshman quarterback.

But the cascade truly began after A&M upset Alabama in Tuscaloosa on November 10, 29-24. The fact that the Aggies jumped out to a 20-0 lead shocked the Crimson Tide faithful. And the fact that our defense stepped up and prevented A.J. McCarron from rising to new heights as the come-from-behind hero. His pass was intercepted in the end zone, sealing the victory for the Aggies and the Heisman for Manziel. Manziel had displayed his talents and abilities on the national scene and everyone was impressed.

That had to be the most exciting game in A&M history. To beat the defending national champions and eventual national champions is truly an exceptional feat. I know, the Tide hasn’t won the National Championship yet, but I don’t give Notre Dame much of a chance. In fact, I’m hoping the Roll Tide does just that and the SEC gets its 7th consecutive national title. It will make the A&M victory over Bama all that much more special.

I also love what has taken place because A&M was only picked to go to a minor bowl at best. No one could have imagined the Aggies would end up at 10-2, and were only two or three plays from playing for the SEC championship. But we can’t live in the world of “what ifs.” It’s too disparaging.

I really am excited about Manziel bringing the Heisman to A&M. We finally have something fun to cheer about. The beauty of this is that there will be more to cheer about next year. Unlike the last few Heisman winners, Manziel isn’t going anywhere. He will return to A&M and play as a sophomore quarterback. Hopefully, his ability will only improve and he will be on the Heisman list once again. He is that good and should be considered if he repeats his performance. He is so much fun to watch, here are a few videos that I want to share with you.

Please click on the link, since I cannot get it to embed. Johnny Legend Continues… I have to admit that I get tears in my eyes every time I watch it! Our guy! Texas A&M’s Quarterback!!! won the Heisman trophy. When you have followed A&M as long as I have, you know how phenomenal that truly is. Most of us cannot even name more than a handful of A&M quarterbacks, and now A&M has the best in the nation!

Also, watch the crowds response here to the announcement.

Aggies Picking Cotton

AndyTEX011I have to admit that when the announcements were made concerning the Texas A&M Aggies Bowl for the season, I was disappointed. After all, the Texas Aggies have had plenty of trips to the Cotton Bowl. Well, perhaps not plenty, but I was hoping for something a bit more exotic. Not sure what, but I wasn’t expecting the Aggies in the Cotton Bowl.

However, as Wade pointed out to me, the Aggies going to the Ma Bell Cotton Bowl is actually better than what his LSU Tigers were getting: a trip to the Chick Fil-A Bowl against the Clemson Tigers on New Year’s Eve. That is not when you want your team playing because it is only one of four bowls for the day.

The Texas Aggies are playing on January 4th, at 8 p.m. on Fox. That is the only game of the day, in prime time, when all the minor bowls have already played out and people really start paying attention. Most people ignore the minor bowls, like the San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl. (I’m not making that up. It’s played on December 20th). So it is good that Aggies are picking Cotton, and even better they are playing the Oklahoma Sooners. It should be a great game to watch. Hopefully the Sooners will feel the full effects of Aggies offense led by Johnny Manziel and rejoice that we have left the Big 12 for greener pastures in the SEC.

THE STAT That Puts Manziel Over the Top in Heisman Quest

Kudos to the marketing department of Texas A&M University in touting Johnny Football Manziel for the Heisman Trophy. They have put together a wonderful web page that has all his stats showing why Manziel is the best choice for the Heisman Trophy.

BUT THE STAT that takes the cake… from the “I’m not making this up” category:

1 — The number of kittens that Johnny Manziel has save on Wellborn Road in front of Kyle Field!

That is absolutely priceless! Manziel saved a kitten! That should do the trick and win the hearts and minds of those voting for the Heiman Trophy winner!

Manziel Takes Over in Heisman Race!!!

I like what ESPN is reporting. Johnny Football Manziel is taking over in the Heisman race after the front runner, Colin Klein threw for three interceptions in Kansas State’s loss to powerhouse Baylor on Saturday, 52-24.

Manziel helped himself is the Texas Aggies defeat of Sam Houston State when he threw for 267 yards, three touchdowns and ran for 100 yards on the ground, making him the the SEC leading rusher for a quarterback with 1,114 yards on the ground. About 700 of those yards on the ground came in broken plays when he was scrambling. With numbers like that, you wonder if the coaches are sending in plays that will break down in order to force Manziel to scramble. I doubt it, but it did make me wonder. Here is what ESPN is reporting:

Johnny Manziel takes over the Heisman race: He might have been playing in a glorified scrimmage with Sam Houston State in town, but Manziel had another terrific day on the football field. He threw for 267 yards and three touchdowns, while rushing for 100 yards and adding two more scores. Manziel has an SEC-leading 1,114 rushing yards, which is a new NCAA record for a freshman quarterback. He also broke former Kentucky quarterback Jared Lorenzen’s freshman record for total offense of 3,827 set in 2000 on the Aggies’ first drive. Manziel is now the fifth player and first freshman in FBS history to pass for at least 3,000 yards with at least 1,000 yards rushing in a season. What helps him even more is Heisman frontrunner Collin Klein tossed three interceptions in Kansas State’s 28-point loss to Baylor and Oregon running back Kenjon Barnerran for just 66 yards in the Ducks’ loss. Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o is still there, but it looks like Manziel is the new leader in the Heisman race, (emphasis added).

Andy at Kyle Field: Update

This is the second Saturday since Andy and I went to see the Texas A&M Aggies play in Kyle Field, so I’m a bit slow in writing about it all. After writing about the flight with my father, I haven’t had time to finish out our trip, with the story about going to the game. The game was the highlight of things we did, but not the highlight of the trip. The highlight of the trip was spending time with Pops and Nonna and watching Andy get a chance to know his grandfather.

Yet, the reason we were there was to go to the game. Andy hasn’t been to a Texas Aggies game since he was in the womb. I mean that literally. My wife and I went to an Aggies game when they were playing Clemson back in 2004, a few months before he was born. He did experience the game, only on a limited level. Every time the Aggies would score and the Corps of Cadets fired off their canon, Andy would kick inside the womb in celebration. So you can see it’s been a while since he has been to a game.

Coming out of the tunnel next to Kyle Field.

I think I was more excited in taking him to the game than he was in going because I’m not sure he knew what he was in for. He has been to football games, but nothing like a Division I college game, especially a Texas Aggies game.

I remember my Dad and Mom taking us to University of Houston Cougar games growing up and I really wanted to share the Aggies with Andy, and hopefully next year with Joey. It was something I did growing up with my folks and I hope that I can do the same with the boys over the coming years.

We left early in hopes of seeing the band march into the stadium, but traffic had something to say about that. Parking was also a problem. I couldn’t find a parking lot that was open to non-permit holders. I finally found one, but by then, we were too late to see the band march into the stadium. It turned out I was so far from the stadium, I should have left the car in Brenham and walked over.

Once we were in the stadium, I think Andy began to see what a massive place it was. He was loving the fact that we were really high up, that we had neat souvenir cup and that there were so many people. He was cut off guard when we sang the Aggie War Hymn. For those who don’t know, at one point during the song we lock arms with those around us and swing back and forth as we sing “saw varsity’s horns off!” He didn’t want to put his arm around the young woman next to him. He was too shy.

Our view from our seats.

I didn’t know that about my son. But he has a shy streak in him. When we were walking through the tunnel from the parking lot, we ran across one of the Texas Aggies Swimmers and I wanted him to take a picture with her, but he was too shy. I think it was Allyson Sweeny, but I’m not sure.

By the end of the game, he did warm up to the girls sitting next to us to the point that they were sharing food with him. I should have given him a few lessons about singing the Aggie War Hymn.

He also loved the firing of the canon. I knew he would and he got a lot of opportunity to hear it go off as the Aggies managed to score 70 points on South Carolina State. The offense was clicking and State was outmatched. We were hoping for a high-scoring game, since it was Andy’s first game.

I wanted to take him to see the Aggies play Arkansas,  but Pops and Nonna had to fly out of town last Friday so we would have missed them. Dad recommended the SC State game in order to make sure that Andy’s first game was a win. Little did we know that A&M would decimate the Razorbacks as well, 58-10. As a friend and I joked all week, Arkansas is so bad this year that the teams they have played are still scoring touchdowns on them. As he texted me this week: “Liverpool just scored on the Razorbacks.”

Andy With His 12th Man Towel

As for our game, when I asked Andy what he liked about the game, he said, “the whole entire part of it.” Since he has worn his Aggie ball cap at every opportunity, I think he likes the Aggies.

May favorite picture from the night, even though it’s out of focus.