by Joe Santoro

Back to: News
May 3, 2012
Follow News

Sports Fodder: Hunt would have been best choice for award


Sports fodder for a Friday morning . . .

Brett Roy was a good choice as the Nevada Wolf Pack's Doc Martie Award winner this year, signifying the top senior male athlete at the school. Dario Hunt would have been a great choice. Roy, a backup his first two years for the football team, started just two seasons. Hunt was a four-year starter for the basketball team. He finished his career as the Pack's all-time leader in blocked shots and is third in rebounding. He is also one of just four players in school history with at least 1,000 points and 1,000 rebounds. As an under-sized center, generously listed at 6-foot-8, Hunt was one of the hardest workers and most underappreciated team players in school history. The fact that the basketball team had one of its greatest seasons in school history (28-7 with a WAC title and two NIT wins) this year when Hunt was its senior leader while the football team was a big disappointment (7-6 with losses in three of its last four games with a WAC title and a bowl game on the line) when Roy was its senior leader, also should have made Hunt the obvious Martie Award choice.

. . .

By this time next year the WAC is going to look like a boarded up, gutted, fire and theft-ravaged inner city neighborhood. WAC will stand for We Are Condemned. Utah State and San Jose State, it appears, will join the Mountain West Conference in 2013-14, Texas State and Texas-Arlington are going to the Sun Belt and Louisiana Tech and Texas-San Antonio are Conference USA bound. Boise State, which will move its football team from the Mountain West to the Big East in 2013-14, did promise to put of its other sports into the WAC. But now the Broncos are flirting with the Big West. All that will be left in the WAC will be Idaho, New Mexico State, Denver and Seattle. Denver and Seattle don't even have football. Then again, come to think of it, neither does Idaho and New Mexico State.

 

. . .

The WAC needs to do the honorable thing and admit the fight is over. Put the For Sale sign on the lawn, conduct a weekend garage sale and sell the property to the guy with the plaid sport coat who will turn it into a huge used car lot. Pull Idaho aside and tell them to go find a Division I-AA conference. Tell New Mexico State that they need to go find a nice family with friendly kids and a big yard. Tell Denver and Seattle, who must feel like it is 1958 and they just put down a huge down payment on a brand new Edsel, thanks but no thanks. It's over. The WAC is going the way of the hula hoop, World Book Encyclopedias, 8-track players and cameras that require film.

. . .

The sad part about the inevitable demise of the WAC as a legitimate Division I conference is that, from a Wolf Pack perspective, all of the great accomplishments in the conference will be forgotten nationally. It will be like looking up in the rafters at Lawlor Events Center and seeing the banners from the Far West Conference. It will be like pro football championships in the All-America Football Conference or USFL. Nobody will ever care again.

. . .

Where does all of this craziness leave the Mountain West Conference? The MWC is simply just the old WAC with a new paint job and new tires. Next year the league will likely have 10 football members and nine basketball members with the Wolf Pack, UNLV, New Mexico, Utah State, San Jose State, Fresno State, Wyoming, Colorado State, Air Force and Hawaii (football only). All things considered, the MWC will likely come out of this confusing mess in pretty solid shape. The WAC and Mountain West have had a wild game of musical chairs the past copuple years and it seems, the right 10 schools all found their way safeky into a seat.

. . .

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell continues to amaze with his punishment surrounding the New Orleans Saints' bounty scandal. Goodell suspended four players connected to the scandal and two of them don't even play for the Saints anymore. Also what happened to the other two dozen or so players that were supposedly involved? The heinous crime the Saints supposedly committed is a system of payment created to serve as incentive for players to go out and intentionally injure an opposing player. Goodell, though, has never given evidence that Saints players actually did intentionally hurt another player. If so, who? When? How? All Goodell and the NFL have proven is that the Saints had a financial program for their players as an incentive to play hard. Big deal. This is professional football, isn't it? Isn't everything the players do tied to a financial incentive?

. . .

The only person upset with the bounty system, it seems, is Goodell. The players, even the ones who were supposedly the targets of the Saints, never complained. And the fans, who love to see players playing hard, certainly never complained. Goodell needs to relax and go worry about the things that are truly important in his league, like why former players are depressed, almost crippled, suffering from dementia and shooting themselves in the chest.

. . .

You have to like what the San Francisco 49ers and Oakland Raiders did in last week's draft. The Niners added tremendous speed in Illinois wide receiver A.J. Jenkins and Oregon running back LaMichael James as well as depth on the offensive line in Wake Forest's Joe Looney. The Raiders, who didn't even pick until late in the third round, got a strong, nasty offensive lineman in Utah's Tony Bergstrom, a couple guys who should help right away on special teams in San Diego State linebacker Miles Burris and Penn State defensive end Jack Crawford, and a big, strong, possession receiver in Arizona's Juron Criner.


Stories you may be interested in

The Record Courier Updated May 3, 2012 04:24PM Published May 3, 2012 04:23PM Copyright 2012 The Record Courier. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.