Sunday, May 18, 2003

Enquirer Power Ratings

By Mike Ball
The Cincinnati Enquirer

Thumbs up

1. Annika Sorenstam. The LPGA star has the golf snobs up in arms with her appearance in the Colonial. Yep, she probably will destroy the game, just the way Casey Martin did.

2. Tiger Woods. In a rare instance of taking a stand, Tiger said it would be more fair to judge Sorenstam if she played four or five straight tournaments. Now if we could get Tiger to play in four or five straight.

3. The Big Blue (hair) Caravan. Props to the Kentucky Wildcats for visiting a Northern Kentucky nursing home. Do they really think they have to build a fan base?

4. Rafael Palmeiro. The Cubs traded the 500-homer man because they thought he wouldn't ever hit for power. Well, that's the Cubs.

5. College football. For all the talk about college basketball - in this area - the Atlantic Coast Conference's potential expansion and the ensuing reorganizing of the college landscape show that football is the top dog.

6. Dan Hoard. The voice of UC basketball and football made a seamless transition into the Reds booth to fill in for Marty Brennaman, whose mother died. Still, Marty is missed. Condolences.

7. Heather Mitts. The St. Ursula graduate and Philadelphia Charge soccer player has been added to the U.S. Women's national team.

8. The Sacramento Kings. They better be careful. They'll give the NBA a bad name after making 30 consecutive free throws against the Mavericks on Thursday.

9. The Los Angeles Lakers. Some will be happy they're gone. But it was an impressive run. Their series loss to the Spurs was their first since being swept in four games by the Spurs in the second round of the 1999 playoffs. Since, Los Angeles had won 13 straight series.

10. Bowling. The NCAA will hold a women's tournament with eight schools of nine bowlers each for the 2003-04 season. Do the coaches have shoe contracts?

Thumbs down

1. College basketball recruiting. Story upon story. Recruiting service after recruiting service. He's a top-50 or a top-100 or top-150. And then they get to school and can't play at all.

2. Unionizing boxers. Boxers are going to the Teamsters to get help in forming a union. That ought to get some health benefits out of Don King.

3. Pete Sampras. Can't blame him if he feels he's not ready to compete, but tennis sure could use him playing.

4. Iowa State. It took them awhile, but they finally found someone to not turn them down for Larry Eustachy's job. Good luck, Wayne Morgan.

5. Knucklehead fans, continued. Braves first baseman Robert Fick went to college in California so he felt compelled to sign some autographs before the game at Dodger Stadium last week. When he was done, he realized someone had stolen his glove. Nice.

6. Robert Horry. Once the Lakers' Mr. Clutch, he went 2-for-38 from 3-point range in the playoffs.

7. Melissa Stark. Sure, it makes sense for her to quit Monday Night Football to begin raising a family. But, Melissa, what about us?

8. Junior Griffey critics. He didn't go on a rehab assignment. So what?

9. The NBA lottery. Just four days to go until the worst team (Cavaliers) doesn't get the top pick.

10. Georgia Tech. The Jackets had to declare 10 football players academically ineligible for next season.

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