A good friend of mine used to say, “This is a very simple game. You throw the ball, you catch the ball, you hit the ball. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose, sometimes it rains.” – Ebby Calvin LaLoosh, Bull Durham
Sometimes a private Las Vegas based monitoring firm called U.S. Integrity employed by, among many others, the Southeastern Conference and the Ohio Casino Control Commission, calls their clients to report anomalous betting on Friday April 28’s Alabama v LSU baseball game placed at BetMGM at The Great American Ballpark in Cincinnati and based on that call, Ohio suspends betting on Alabama baseball on Monday May 1, soon followed by Indiana, looking into a suspicious bet of their own, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Kansas. Sometimes it comes out that there is video of the individual who placed both flag-raising Ohio bets talking to Alabama head baseball coach Brad Bohannon on the phone. Sometimes the university you root for fires their head baseball coach and announces more than introduces suddenly former Pitching Coach Jason Jackson as Interim Head Baseball Coach by Thursday.
Nick Saban said that Texas A&M paid players to sign with their football team and A&M coach Jimbo Fisher went ballistic. Fisher did nothing wrong as far as the letter, but he ran the spirit off like Bill Murray with an electron proton pack. Fisher freaked the hell out and held a press conference blaming Saban for everything from the Hindenburg disaster to New Coke and told the world that he was done with the Alabama coach and that many coaches who worked with him never would again.
The last time the two worked together was during the 2004 season and Fisher was so apparently disgusted by the “despicable” “narcissist” Saban who he strongly implied is a cheater, that he was done with the man except when in 2018 he talked to reporters outside the Alabama locker room praising his former head coach while waiting to congratulate Nick on a National Championship. Fish deal with waves and Fisher’s disgust seems to crest and through.
I’ve got a piece on this over at ordinary-times.com and spoke about it with editor Andrew Donaldson (@four4thefire) on his podcast Heard Tell (@HeardTellShow.) I linked to the parts that are specific to this post but the whole is worth your time.
Today, in a moment of pique during the game, I may say something bad about Auburn, but I won’t mean it. The flowers and picture of Cecil Hurt in the press box was a nice gesture. Alabama fans appreciate it.
I never met Hurt, but I was behind him in line to give condolences to the mother of a friend who died far too early. The deceased suffered from a cancer that came and went over the course of ten years giving cruel hope now and then though we all knew the end was assured. I didn’t know what to say to his mom. Hurt did.
He was brief, kind, and assuring. I hope there is someone of his caliber at his funeral to give proper condolences.
I thought about that moment often when I read his work. On the page he was droll and cutting. The man I saw was gracious. He’ll be missed.
I was working on a few technical issues on this site so I haven’t been posting lately. One of my favorite writing stops is over at rollbamaroll.com where they have indulged me for almost seven years now.
I write a food column, mostly before football games. A what to eat when you have a tailgate or game day party type of thing.
This year the basketball team is doing so well that I thought I’d throw one in for those guys. The post went up Sunday before the game. I would have linked it here, but technical blah blah blah.
We won, big. 96-77 over Maryland to land us in our first Sweet Sixteen since 2004.
As it happens the women’s team is playing tomorrow (3/24) at noon CT on ESPN2, also against Maryland and this is a Sweet Sixteen matchup. Please excuse the recycled link, but Roll Tide.