Wednesday, October 3, 2007
The Big Picture
We all get caught up in the minutia the 24-hour sports news complex generates. We are told that to be sports fans we have to be. But the truth is that who the 14th man on the Wizard's roster is, who's calling the plays for the Skins, even the postmortem on the last win or loss, means little in the long run; that's all just rooting for the laundry, a la John Feinstein.
Give me consistent contenders over multiple years over flash-in-the-pan championships. They give you more hope, more reason to invest time and interest. So with that in mind, here are some glimpses of THE BIG PICTURE:
!) Can the Skins prove that their convoluted leadership structure can identify talent without a proven GM? Nothing is going to happen if they are saddled with Brandon Lloyds and Adam Archuletas. The first round drafting has been on par, but the top organizations mine the later rounds for lineman, potential and the depth that separates contenders from pretenders over the injury-riddled NFL season. Exhibits A & B are the current state of the O-line and the wide receiving corp. Keenan McKardell was good...back when Brunell was...
If not, are the Skins the Orioles circa 1998?
2) The college basketball teams are in good shape, with Gary Williams and now JT III in the fold for another 6 years. The coaches create the culture; the Hoyas and Terps will have a culture of winning far beyond 2010.
3) The Wiz have two big questions: can this group play decent defense as constituted or will they have to blow it up to find consistent stops at the end of the game? will Agent Zero re-sign at year's end? Both will get answered simultaneously, as the team will have to be signed around Arenas before he gets his 20 million. Big Picture 1A: will Gilbert define himself not by how good his team is on NBA Live 08, but how good they are in the standings? It's great to motivate yourself by how you are perceived, but at some point ya gotta start worrying less about perception, more about reality. Or don't they teach that at New School?
4) The Nats? Wake me up in 2009.
Meanwhile, don't sweat the wins and losses.