Sunday, April 13, 2003

Enquirer Power Rankings

By Mike Ball
The Cincinnati Enquirer

Thumbs up

1. The Big East. The Syracuse men win the NCAA, as do the Connecticut women. And St. John's wins the NIT.

2. Skip Prosser. From a high school coach to Xavier to Loyola, Md. to Xavier to Wake Forest and a new 10-year contract. Impressive.

3. Bengals minicamp. It gets you excited about the NFL, without those pesky "L's."

4. Shaq, Kobe and Co. The Lakers are right back in it after a dreadful-for-them start. They're playing for the fourth playoff spot in the West and its accompanying home court. Will you bet against them?

5. The Stanley Cup playoffs. The perfect way to watch: Flip the dial and catch an overtime, or in the Anaheim Mighty Ducks' case, a triple-overtime victory at Detroit.

6. Dee Davis (Princeton) and Josh Duncan (Moeller). The Enquirer hoops players of the year, and deservedly so. And Duncan will be back next year.

7. Pat Tillman. The NFL player turned special forces Army Ranger is indeed in Iraq, according to his agent.

8. Austin Kearns. Simply outstanding. Didn't he pitch at Lexington Lafayette?

9. Ken Griffey Jr. Here's hoping he hasn't heard any of the ridiculous criticisms.

10. Darryl Strawberry. Here's hoping he can stay clean after his 11-month stay in prison.

Thumbs down

1. Tiger Woods doubters. What, you didn't think he'd make a charge?

2. It's the shoes. Why does it seem something's terribly out of whack when the talk of LeBron James' eventual shoe contract is approaching $50 million.

3. Florida State. Another criminal case for one of grandpa Bowden's boys.

4. The Baseball Hall of Fame. Dale Petroskey, the president of the Hall, is backtracking after canceling a Bull Durham anniversary celebration because stars Tim Robbins and Susan Sarandon were outspoken against the war in Iraq. Nice.

5. Nebraska lawmakers. You think the fact 26 of them voted for legislation to pay Nebraska football players has anything to do with the Cornhuskers' record the past three seasons?

6. Qyntel Woods. Lacking a valid license (it had been revoked in Tennessee), Portland's rookie forward attempted to use his Blazers trading card for identification when pulled over for speeding last week.

7. The Wizards. They failed to make the playoffs, so the Michael Jordan era is finally coming to an end. Isn't it?

8. The Reds. As bad as they've been, how in the world do they have four victories?

9. NASCAR. We must have a true new superstar since everyone is whining that Dale Earnhardt Jr. gets preferential treatment.

10. Athletic directors. They have no chance against powerful football and basketball coaches. Just ask Kansas' Al Bohl.

Phillies 8, Reds 5
Reds box, runs
Phils' Pratt makes rare bats count
Boone, Haynes decipher progress
Reds Notebook: Griffey mum about shoulder
Reds Q&A: Junior doesn't deserve jeers
Reds Chatter
Reds fans picky at Cinergy auction

Beisbol comes home to Puerto Rico
Notable players from Puerto Rico
Have Expos discovered new place to call home?
Expos' games in Puerto Rico
Diamondbacks' aces are snake-bitten
Williams, Cardinals blank Astros
Surprising Royals make it 9-0
Baseball Team Rankings
Who's hot, who's not

Blockbuster or blunder? Drafting QB a risky call
Popular choices in the draft and how they fared
Kitna knows security fleeting
Bengals Q&A: Money available for free agents

DAUGHERTY: Woods defines drama
Maggert leads; Tiger lurks
Masters Scoreboard
Masters Notebook: Els has big hill to climb
Amateur hour goes on for trio

Defense stars in Miami spring game

Ford beats West for Wooden Award
Ohio State, Dayton to play in Maui

Duncan makes MVP case on court
Jordan, Wizards didn't mix well

Cyclones go up 2-0 in series

Peace Rules wins Blue Grass Stakes
Blue Grass Notebook
Wood win perfect Derby tuneup

Painful moments in Cincy sports
Enquirer Power Rankings
College Update: UC hurdler among world's best
Sports on TV-Radio

Saturday's high school results
High School Insider
Kentucky Insider