Sunday, November 30, 2008

Sooner/Steeler Overlap ('Pokes n' Pats)

It's always a little wacky when the Sooner/Steeler Overlap grips us especially tight with some kooky hijinks which we didn't see coming.

Thanks a lot, Frank Alexander and Lawrence Timmons.

Extra-hard helmet slaps for those two ...

LOOK ... nobody's ever bothered to explain it with eloquence (maybe because it's inexplicable), but there's something extremely cool and very unique about linebackers and/or D-linemen when they've got the football tucked under one arm as they sprint in the open field (Y2K calls sprinting in the open field: "running downhill" ... "in space").

When the above happens, we can't help but set the expressions on our faces to: ASTONISHED.

Though we know we shouldn't be surprised.

Let's face it: Linebackers are unquestionably the most-versatile people on the field (speed-rush the QB, shed blockers, stuff the run, drop into coverage, block a kick now and then, save the bacon of the D-line or the DBs), so we oftentimes find ourselves connecting with our inner-"hip-hip-hooray" (or our inner-"fuckin'-A!") when we see the LB INT and the subsequent showcase of better-than-average speed, quality juking skills or both.

LBs need those rewards ...

Last night, Frank Alexander had a clear, unobstructed path to the end zone because most of the players were entangled and piled up inside the 5-yard line when he scooped up the fumble near the 10 and went off to the races.

Indeed ... it's a real thrill when you're spending an Oklahoma Sweatshirt Saturday night watchin' Frank Alexander chug the length of the field in Stillwater while returning that fumble for 2 pts. for OU which made the score 23-19 when it looked as though we might be lookin' at 21-21 ... and then you're noticin' that Frankie wears the same number as receiver Quentin Chaney -- who, it appears, is under-used these days (maybe he's injured?) -- and then you catch yourself wund'rin' why an ESPN roster lists Manuel Johnson as #22 when he wears #1 and why an Oklahoma Sooners quote-unquote "official site" has Dominique Franks listed as #1 when he wears #15 ... which is the same number that backup QB Joey Halzle of Huntington Beach also wears ... the same number which J.T. Thatcher wore with such pride when he was winning the Mosi Tatupu Award as the nation's top special-teams player (an award which now longer exists) for the '00 National Champion Sooner Schooner.

It was Nick Bakay who once taught us that "the numbers never lie" -- and, even though Jermaine Gresham wears the same number as '03 Heisman Trophy winner Jason White, we must remember that there are concepts which extend beyond the numbers.

Such as the moment when, on the possession following OU's theft of OSU's 2 pts., Gresham gathered in the rebound of that Sam Bradford pass which ricocheted off Juaquin Iglesias ("tip drill!") and gracefully strode the remaining 50-some-odd yards for the TD which put 'em up, 30-21.

For 6-6/270 (or thereabouts), Gresham moves about the field as though he's somewhere in the range of 6-3/235 (or thereabouts).

He's very fluid.

And probably better than two-time consensus All-America TE Keith Jackson as the best in school history.

Is that sacrilege?
If it is ... tough shit, y'know?

Speaking of what's fluid, people who made the fluid transition from their Sooner Saturday Sweatshirt to their Steeler Sunday Sweatshirt probably did so only because they maybe aren't blessed enough to have a SOONERS 18 jersey to slip off before slipping into a TIMMONS 94 jersey.

Timmons -- like Alexander and Gresham -- put his "breakaway speed" on display during a non-critical juncture of a 33-10 victory in Foxboro (or Foxburrow or however they're spelling it this year).

Since the Steelers were up, 26-10, the D was merely trying to prevent a window-dressing TD that would benefit Fantasy knobs who were aroused by Cassel's previous-game efforts vs. The NYJ (400 yds.) and the Miamammals (415-yds.).

Fine outings, but, ooopsie daisy, Mr. Chatsworth High, that ain't Reseda or Canoga Park you're playin'.

So, a slightly tardy delivery on a RB quick-out that Kevin Faulk was running ... ACCESS DENIED! ACCESS DENIED!

Timmons -- who ranks as a quality, modern-day "L.T." in the NFL food chain somewhere between LaDanian Tomlinson and Lawrence Tynes -- -- rode Faulk's hip smartly then used a powerful burst to "close" on the ball and pluck it for the INT at the 10-yd. line.

We all thought that he was "off to the races" down the near sideline, but, Timmons' coast-to-coast gallop was destroyed 1 yd. shy of 90-yd. glory when Ben Watson dragged down L.T. The LB (it sure as hell looked as though the ball BROKE THE PLANE when his knee touched, goddammit).

Maybe God was punishing Timmons for not simply lowering his shoulder and bowling over Watson inside the 5, causing the Pats TE to land on his kiester in the end zone.

Or maybe God was punishing Timmons because Ryan Clark threw a crappy, quasi-brushblock on Watson near the 15-yd. line.

Or maybe God, as He usually does, was listening to the Steelers radio broadcast on satellite radio and maybe He got pissed when L.T. made the interception and then Tunch orgasmed into the mike with an "uh!" at the 14-yd. line, an "uh!" at the 25-yd. line and an "uh!" at the 31-yd. line.

No word on when exactly Tunch climaxed ... and, now that ya mention it, wasn't Watson the Pat who ran down Champ Bailey on that controversial 100-yd. INT ret. in the playoffs 3 yrs. ago at Mile High? True ... Champ probably DID lose possession of the ball shy of the goal line, blah blah blah ... but, since it negatively impacted Belichick and Brady, everything's cool ... )

Before anybody prepares to release a Timmons Tragedy report, it might be wiser to take a moment and salute the player with the longest INT return by an LB in the Steelers' glorious 76-yr. history.

But, wait!
There seems to be a discrepancy!

On pg. 332 of the Steelers 2008 Media Guide, the longest interceptions in team history are listed as:

99t Martin Kottler (9/27/33 vs. Chicago Cardinals)
91 Jack Hinkle (10/9/43 vs. New York Giants)
86t Glen Edwards (9/30/73 at Houston)
84 Joey Porter (9/15/02 vs. Oakland)
82t Jim Bradshaw (10/24/65 at Philadelphia)
82t Tony Compagno (11/7/48 at Green Bay)
81 Russ Craft (10/17/54 vs. Cleveland)
80 Bill Dudley (11/3/46 vs. Washington)

However, on pg. 407, the INTs of at least 80 yds. are listed as:

1. Martin Kottler (9/27/33 vs. Chicago Cardinals) 99t
2. Glen Edwards (9/30/73 at Houston) 86t
3. Tony Compagno (11/7/48 at Green Bay) 82t
4. Russ Craft (10/17/54 vs. Cleveland) 81

On the second list, there's no Hinkle (Jack, not Bryan), J-Peazy, Bradshaw (not the famous one) or Bullet Bill Dudley.

Something's terribly amiss.

**Addendum to the tangent of the sidebar: Not many fans of the Black N' Gold remember that the longest INT ret. vs. the Steelers was that by the Raiders Chris Carr (because it occurred during that game we've all tried to forget ... the L to the eventual 2-14 OakTown team two seasons ago), but some of us have discovered that a fantastic ice-breaker at parties (and a fun-fact which'll get chicks into bed lickety-split) is any time you reference the two SHORTEST TD-interception runbacks vs. the Steelers ... both times, Neil O'Donnell was the victim ... during games one month apart in '95 -- first, when the Bears' Barry Minter returned that O'Donnell INT 2 yds. for a TD in a game which the Steelers won, 37-34, at Soldier Field then, one month later in Oakland (in the Raiders' first season back in the East Bay after 13 seasons in L.A.), Aundray Bruce intercepted O'Donnell and returned it 1 yd. for a TD in a game which the Steelers won, 29-10 ... but, there's not much more detail to provide, given that O'Donnell -- with one of the lowest INT/att. ratios in NFL history -- threw two more bizarre INTs later that season ... in the same game ... to a nobody named Larry Brown, who is definitely not to be confused with THE REAL Larry Brown who was wearin' #87 as a TE catchin' a TD pass in the Steelers' first Super Bowl and then was the #79 RT Larry Brown in Super Bowls XIII and XIV ...

"Shortest INT-return-TDs" usually live in an off-the-wall neighborhood not found in most media guides -- yet, when they are excluded from a media guide as if they are a Bullet Bill Dudley pick-off, we're sad.

We're sadder still when we consider the meticulous work required to assemble a media guide and notice a Super Bowl X recap on pg. 321.

The photo on the page is of Mel Blount and Steve Furness converging on Tony Dorsett.

The problem with that, as we know, is that in Jan. '76, Dorsett had just completed his junior season at Pitt.

He hadn't even won the Heisman yet (punch line: Good thing it wasn't a photo of Greg Lloyd sacking Steve Pelluer, ha ha ... ).

Goddammit, kids ... this is the Steelers' media guide, not the CinShitnati BenGirls media guide.

These errors and omissions make it difficult to earn the trust of the end-user.


Anyway, with all the havoc that James Harrison and LaMarr Woodley create as OLBs in the 3-4 ... and with the steady play of ILBs Farrior and Foote, sometimes ya forget that Timmons is a passing-down LB who's slowly but surely gaining our trust as the '07 first-round selection.

And, Ben Watson?
Who gives a shit?

Aside from his tackle which only delayed the inevitable (a Gary Russell TD), he looked mighty weak when attempting to reel in that high-but-catchable pass which bounced off his hands and into the waiting arms of Troy Polamalu for the drive-killing INT.

THAT turnover DID matter since the score at the time was 23-10 ... and the potential for a 23-17 score with six or seven minutes to play could've made matters VERY interesting.

But, 5 turnovers in the second half of a game which was 10-10 at halftime ... fatal! (thanks to a pair of dandy sack-strips by the ferocious guy in the HARRISON 92 jersey).

It's kinda weird when we remind ourselves that Harrison wears the same number as the Steelers' all-time sacks leader (Jason Gildon) and Timmons wears Chad Brown's #94.

Yet, when it comes to classic numbers, a lot of us were having Paul Ernster withdrawal when we didn't see him wearing his #5 jersey as he stood in punt formation in the drizzle n' cold in Fucksboro today.

Alas, Paul Ernster is merely a memory now ... a 3-game fill-in who might've lasted longer in the Steel City if only he'd dialed into his inner COLQUITT 5 and not made a spectacle of himself in the swirly-snow during that Thurs.-niter vs. CinShitnati 10 days ago.

Five punts for a 28-yd. avg.

Whereas he seemingly had won our hearts when he double-handedly took down the Chargers with his professional handling of the long snap from Jared Retkofsky (placing the ball on the damp, semi-frozen lawn, turning the laces to face Retkofsky's arse and using two fingers on his left hand to hold the ball at its highest point as Jeff Reed's foot swung through), that act in itself is probably not justification for those of us who were considering it to purchase and then wear around town an ERNSTER 5 jersey.

Ernster or no, what we're wondering now is whether what we saw today was a preview of a future AFC playoff showdown. Granted, the Steelers get their shot at the formidable-looking Titans (11-1) three rrrrrweeks from now, but if the Black N' Gold goes 2-2 vs. Dallas, Baltimore, Tenn. and Cleveland, what will 11-5 mean to the postseason?

They've already lost to the Giants and Colts at Heinz ... and that's where last season ended w/ a first-round KO vs. Jax.

Does home field matter?
It didn't three yrs. ago.

Well, this weekend is in the books ... the Sooners beating the Cowboys and the Steelers tuning up for the Cowboys.

Damn right, there's overlap, even if the Cowboys retired #12 for Roger Stauback and Okie State has yet to do the same for the #12 worn by QB legends Rusty Hilger, Mike Gundy and Asoteletangafamosili Pogi.

And, let's not forget Okie State's importance in the Steelers cosmos -- for it is the university which gave us Jon Kolb (LT in four Super Bowl wins ... and THE all-time Steelers #55, sorry, J-Peazy) as well as Jason Gildon (career sack leader w/ 77).

[HEY ... we had to put Aso Pogi's name in there ... because we forgot to mention how the Sooner OL neutralized Tonga Tea yesterday ... ]


Sunday, November 16, 2008

L'Estasi Dell Undici-Dieci

Gambling degenerates and Fantasy League chumps didn't appreciate the artistic beauty of the first-ever 11-10 final score in NFL history, established today at Heinz Field (of course).

Then again, those are the same knuckleheads who failed to embrace the beauty of this, the first meeting of Troy Polamalu and LaDanian Tomlinson on the playing field since the nationwide release of those Nike TV ads which feature the montage of the Steeler safety and the Charger tailback as they progress from hyperactive tykes to NFL superstardom.

Predictably, 99.4 percent of the gambling/Fantasy bedwetting riff-raff have no clue that Ennio Morricone's "L'ESTASI DELL'ORO" is the background music for those TV promos which culminate with a collision between the two -- in a sportsmanlike manner (of course).

'Cuz that's what Nike's about.

Sportsmanship ...

Fair play ...

Just doin' it ...

And payin' Ennio Morricone a hefty royalty check (goddammit) for borrowing something he composed for "The Good, The Bad & The Ugly."

It seems fitting that Nike would opt for a song which translates to "The Ecstasy of Gold" as the anthem for a 15-second ad, although some of us old-schoolers would've found it gratifying if Ennio Morricone -- who finally won an honorary Academy Award last year -- had told the ad wizards hired by Nike, "I'm not for sale, you motherless sons of bitches!"

Or, if Ennio had crossed up everybody by selling the rights to "Due Contro Cinque" instead of "L'Estasi Dell'Oro."

Hell, in this mixed-up world of music publishing rights, etc., Ennio Morricone quite likely hasn't owned the rights to "L'Estasi Dell'Oro" for 20 or 30 years.

It's probably the property of General Motors for all we know.

Still, that doesn't give Nike the right to play God with music which this world has always associated with the greatest Western ever made.

Once we allow Nike to go unchecked, before ya know it, we're seeing Tuco (Eli Wallach) running full speed through the Sand Hill Cemetery, searching desperately to find the grave with the name ARCH STANTON on it -- and, instead of seeing Tuco wearing a pair of dusty-and-tattered boots, we notice that he has a brand new pair of Air Jordans (or whichever Nikes the CGI wizards deemed appropriate for that scene as the music -- with trumpets blaring furiously -- builds to its crescendo, Tuco on an adrenaline high with the prospect of locating the $200,000 of Confederate gold).

We've previously addressed the concept of "crossover" when it comes to our favorite NFL or MLB teams playing on the same day, etc. -- although it's rare when our favorite players and our favorite movies intersect (unless you're a loser who's into Keanu Reeves and you believe that his sissy-girl, football-throwin' in either "Point Break" or "The Replacements" validates his movie existence as either ex-Ohio State quarterback Johnny Utah or ex-Ohio State quarterback Shane Falco ... or maybe you're somebody who's more into O.J. Simpson in either "Capricorn One" or "The Towering Inferno" before he was Norberg in "The Naked Gun" movies).

It makes ya laugh (or scratch yer head) how a Jewish guy (Eli Wallach) playin' a Mexican bandit (Tuco) is cast with hundreds of Italians in a spaghetti western filmed in Spain.

Eli Wallach was a pro's pro, though ... and if Nike had any real clout, Eli Wallach would've won the Oscar as Best Actor (not merely in a "supporting" role, either ... seriously, he outshined Clint in that movie, like it or not) in '68.

OH, SHIT ... the game!

Look ... all we're saying is that there's no reason to act all nutso over the fact that Polamalu's TD on the game's final play was disallowed.

Some insane-yet-creative reffing allowed to stand the first-ever 11-10 final in the history (from what CBS told us) of the league's previous 12,837 games.

Nobody said if those 12,837 included today's contests -- and the only time we remember any NFL team landing on "11" as a winner or a loser was in the NFC Championship Game almost 10 years ago when the Rams got the late TD to turn a 6-5 deficit into an 11-6 victory.

Of course, that's the painful punchline which everybody will use for the next several days ... that this was Pirates-Padres in a baseball score, blah blah blah blah blah blah blah, yadda yadda, yakkety yak ...


11-10 looks/sounds/feels like a baseball score ...

(Question: Since 92.5 percent of all NFL games are 10-7 at halftime -- when they aren't 13-3 or 7-6 -- shouldn't it be mandated somewhere that all of THOSE scores receive baseball-score certification? "Philadelphia leads Chicago, 7-3? What, did Ryan Howard hit a home run off of Carlos Zambrano? Ha ha ha ha ha ha ..." Oh, the hilarity!)

Well, for those of us who didn't drop $500 on Pittsburgh-minus-5, we're just thrilled that after last week's aggravation against Indy that this one was decided by a perfect pass from long snapper Jared Retkofsky (#61) to holder Paul Ernster (#5) who cleanly set the ball on its tip and turned the laces away from Jeff Reed for the winning kick.

When a play ends in a tidy and happy fashion as that one did, it's obvious why Dirk McGirder (who some people still unwisely call "Steely McBeam") has broken out his wide smile.

It's because Jared Retkofsky and Paul Ernster are slowly-but-surely earning the trust of Dirk McGirder.

As per those gambling junkies and Fantasy addicts, the only ones who won't be all pissy and PMS-ey for the rest of tonight all throughout tomorrow are those who had the "road dog" Chargers-plus-5 or those who collected points for Big Ben's 300-plus yards or for Fast Willie's 100-plus yards.

And then there's the rest of us who appreciated the game for the array of offerings -- from the amazing (Polamalu's diving-on-the-snowy-turf, one-handed, fingertip-scoop INT in the first quarter) to the agonizing (Mewelde Moore gettin' thoroughly ass-whooped when the left side of the Steelers' OL got blown up "at the point of attack" on 4th-and-goal at the 1 for the second week in a row).

That winning drive was cool, though ... and it sent the Chargers to 0-13 all-time during the regular-season in Pittsburgh (as Western Time Zone teams dipped to 0-11 this season in games played in the Eastern Time Zone) -- and it was a nice bounceback following last week's result, when the Colts snapped their 40-year losing streak in Pittsburgh.

The game wasn't all that well-played (who the flock was Rivers throwing to on that pass that James Harrison INT'ed at the S.D. 10 late in the first half???) -- and those sound bytes of Bill Hillgrove indicate that the contest wasn't very well-broadcast, either (on the Harrison pickoff: "Intercepted! Running with the football a Steeler defender!" -- you cannot be serious, William. It's #92 and it's not Jason Gildon, so do the frickin' math, Ace ... and do it before Tunch has an orgasm into the microphone, okay? ... ).

Nothwitstanding some of the unsightliness leading up to it, there were some interesting moments and high drama at the end.

Those are real plusses.

Nevertheless, the outcry tomorrow will be intense ... and widespread ... as America tries to reconcile the injustice of a nonsensical final play.

It'll be a full-blown, he-said/she-said ...

Was it a forward lateral from Tomlinson to Chambers?

Does it really matter?

By the very capricious nature of the sport itself and with the arbitrary nature of the zebras which govern it, we should be thankful that every game doesn't end with a 7-car pileup.

But, some of us ain't sweatin' it.

'Cuz this one's a "W" -- and now it's time to prepare for CinSHITnati in that Thurs. niter, which'll be the Steeelers' third home game in 11 days.

There's bigger fish to fry than worrying about periphery issues such as the NFL refs.

After all, when asked our opinion on the matter of NFL officials, some of us answer a question with a question, such as: "The first woodwind sound we hear on "L'Estasi Dell'Oro" ... is that a clarinet or an oboe -- or is it the contra bassoon?"


Wednesday, November 05, 2008

President Oprah's Pledge: College Football Playoffs! (and free cigarettes!)

Now that America has finally elected a Kenyan-American as its next president (as a precursor to Sixto Lezcano becoming our first Puerto Rican president in 2016), it's up to this "leader" -- as the new Grand Marshal in this Tournament of Roses Parade which we call USA! USA! -- to put his money where his campaign rhetoric is.

In his final interview before yesterday's so-called "historic" Election Tuesday, President-Elect Oprah flashed that championship AquaFresh smile during halftime of MNF and told Berman (of the Disneyland Football Channel) that the time has come for a college football playoff system for the big-boy teams above the minor-league teams such as Appalachian State and Slippery Rock.

When America heard those words, one half of the nation said, "Fo shizzle, ma nizzle" -- and the other half responded with, "In God, we be trustin'."

Actually, America's response might've been the expression of surprise that Berman didn't call him "Barack The Casbah" Obama -- because, Lord knows, nobody stirs the pot of outdated concepts/events/people (even though we all appreciate that final album, "Combat Rock," circa 1982, from the Clash -- "the only band that matters") more than the non-athletic Berman, who our Muslim adversaries abhor not just because he might be pushing a pro-Zionist agenda, but more because he's a non-athlete who might, without warning, break into a highlight of himself holing out from 17 feet or on stage with Huey Lewis.

Look ... nobody's sayin' that 9/11 was Berman's fault.
But, he ain't helpin', y'know?

Before we get caught up in semantics, let's remember that President-Elect Oprah and his AquaFresh smile didn't exactly "endorse" a college-football-playoff platform.
It was more like: "Gee, playoffs would be swell."

He sounded about as non-committal (in politicalese, that's called "on the fence") as he seems to be about quitting smoking ("giving up cigarettes would be swell. Put that on my to-do list ...") -- or as about as vexed as much of White America is that the leftist-guerrilla media downplays the white mama aspect.

(The Black America which isn't pro-Obama might be categorizing him as an Oreo ... in probably the same manner in which most of Black America never embraced a Republican ex-QB named J.C. Watts because a black "Republican" means that he's probably a white dude dressed up as a black guy ... or he's an Uncle Tom or whatever buzzwords they're usin' nowadays to denounce a politician who won't allow a 15-year-old to abort her fetus on the sidewalk in broad daylight while she's freebasing this week's welfare check ... )

One of the most-classic President Oprah tributes occurred during a spin around the TV dial when we noticed that chunky black-chick/co-host on "The View" (the one who's not Whoopi ... or Star Jones ... the other one ... whose name we don't know) recapped the outcome by sobbing to America that she was now able to tell her son, "There are no limitations ... no lim(sob)uhhh(sob)tay-shins ..."

Somebody needs to tell Mama and little Je'Quan that the only way that the people who run this country (the gun lobby, the tobacco lobby) are gonna notice his limitless potential is if he runs a 4.23 40 and receives the recommendation of Mel Kiper's Bouffant that he can "make plays in space."

No limmm-uhhh-tayyy-shins ... well, that is, unless your name is Ellen Degeneres and you wake up to find that Election Day wasn't so kind to you ... and Prop. 8 sez that your homosexual marriage is void.

America has spoken, Ellen -- and all throughout the land, we're celebrating with a "breakfast of champions" consisting of a piping-hot plate of Uncle Ben's Converted Rice coated with generous, squirt-bottle applications of Aunt Jemimah syrup.

Except for Ellen and Portia -- who are eating cold, overcooked Minute Rice drenched in Log Cabin.

As it so happens, America, apparently, isn't ready for gay marriage any more than it's ready for a playoff system for Div. I-A teams, despite the wishful thinking, casual suggestions and handfuls of pinwheels and lollipops from our President-Elect with a mama who's as white as his Pepsodent smile.

What the future holds, it would seem, is some vital legislation.

Or an arm-wrestling match between Elijah Mohamed and Jesus Christ (the Jesus w/ the Afro who looks like Dr. J., not the bearded, white-boy, hippie Jesus).

Event to be staged at a neutral site ...
Not in Nazareth or in Mecca ...
Maybe at the RCA Dome ...

It is fascinating to note that Black Prez w/ His White Mom won the election during a football season in which we lost two more black head football coaches in the college ranks (Tyrone Willingham and Ron Prince) and we might be losing three black NFL coaches by the end of this season (on the chopping block: Marvin, Herman, Romeo).

Football, as we've learned, is a great equalizer -- and it's impressive to see the sport re-evolve with the return of the white-boy tailback (i.e. Stanford's Toby Gerhart and Kansas' Jake Sharp to name two collegians ... plus NFL rookies Jacob Hester from LSU and Peyton Hillis from Arkansas).

That's for you, Ed Podolak ...

This is real progress for America -- black prez, white tailback. For years, white Americans were viewed only as Madison Hedgecock-type fullbacks who needed to clear a path for the flashier black players who would be sleeping with the white groupies after the game.

Now, the power may be shifting.

Because of President-Elect Oprah.

If only he could do something about bringing home Caylee ...

It's not a major request, given how we've outlawed black football coaches, outlawed lipstick lesbians who want more outta life than to star in quality chick-on-chick porn and brought honor back to Whitey who wants to tote the rock.

While we're addressing half-Kenyans who ascend to the highest office in the land, maybe it's time to deliver some reparations to the tune of several billion $$$ to several dozen Native American nations who might've suffered certain injustices at the hands of Whitey and the bruthuhs who built their football stadiums on the land which was stolen from the natives.

It's about President-Elect Oprah using the white side of his brain rather than the Kenyan color of his skin to get things done.

After all, one of the top college QBs in the nation -- Oklahoma's Sam Bradford -- is part Cherokee.

Is it not time to reserve the right to reverse the wrongs perpetrated against Native American QBs, such as Sonny Sixkiller?

We're all in the same tribe -- so sayeth those of us who've purchased numerous cartons of smokes from the Tuscarora Indians in western N.Y.

The natives make 'em damn fine cigarette, but unless there's something stronger inside than tobacco, it's foolish to vote in elections where one of the candidates has a smile a mile wide, but less tangible political pull and charisma than our fave African leader of all-time -- SHAKA ZULU.

Another thing: How insane is it to cast a ballot for a candidate whose cabinet we don't know and cannot predict?

If President Oprah names Mussolini's grandson as his Secretary of State, that would be harmful. Of greater harm would be if President Oprah allows ex-First Lady Clinton and her hillbilly husband, Bubba, anywhere near the Oval Office.

For some of us, it ain't about whether the new Prez is a black dude -- after all, MLK taught us that we're not 'sposed to judge based on the color of one's skin, but, rather, based on the content of his character.

If he can't lead like LeBron and legislate like Shaka Zulu, then there's nuthin' all that "historic" about this election.

Isn't that right City of Detroit? How's yer black mayor, Kwame Kilpatrick, workin' out?

Seems like he might be a man of the people, but not really for the people. And with a name like "Kilpatrick," nobody is really sure if he embraces his Irish heritage the way that, say, Shaquille O'Neal does.

Anyway, the next four years are gonna be swell, America ... the left-wing media's gonna forget to remind that President Oprah's mama is white -- and President Oprah's gonna hope nobody remembers his "Gee, college football playoffs would be swell" remark.

Let the "lookin'-the-other-way" begin now.

That's how we get the economy turned around and lessen our involvement in unwinnable Middle East-conflicts.

Empty rhetoric, however, makes for a bloody and pointless Bowl ...