Tiger Shows The Path For I’ll Have Another

| June 7, 2012
Bud Thieman, left, talked baseball with Bats manager David Bell, center, and Greg Galiette, senior vice-president of the Bats, during a meeting of the Louisville Quarterback Club at Big Spring Country Club. Bud, a catcher, played against and with Bell’s grandfather, Gus Bell, the first great athlete Flaget High had. Gus, an outfielder, went on to a stellar career with the Cincinnati Reds.

Bud Thieman, left, talked baseball with Bats manager David Bell, center, and Greg Galiette, senior vice-president of the Bats, during a meeting of the Louisville Quarterback Club at Big Spring Country Club. Bud, a catcher, played against and with Bell’s grandfather, Gus Bell, the first great athlete Flaget High had. Gus, an outfielder, went on to a stellar career with the Cincinnati Reds.

Maybe the way Tiger Woods roared back into the golf spotlight to start the week is a good omen for Thoroughbred racing. Now if I’ll Have Another can break the Triple Crown drought and win the Belmont Stakes Saturday all will be better on the sports scene.

It may have been surprising to some who will never forgive Tiger’s philandering that cost him his marriage and family, but golf fans couldn’t have been more supportive as their favorite golfer broke his long absence from golf’s preeminence.

There to cheer him on and greet him after his fifth championship in Jack Nicklaus’ Memorial Tournament at Dublin, Ohio, was Nicklaus himself.

Tiger’s tournament  victory gave him one more than Nicklaus, but he will have to stay on the straight and narrow to equal Jack’s total of major victories, the US and British Opens, the Masters and PGA.

Take a bow time

Have you noticed how many top college athletes from the Louisville area enjoyed fantastic seasons this spring?

The Southeastern Conference’s top golfer was Alabama’s Justin Thomas of St. Xavier. The SEC’s No. 1 tennis player was  UK’s Eric Quigley from South Oldham.

Trinity product Corey Littrell was UK’s best pitcher with a 9-2 record and helped the Wildcats to a record 45 victories (to go with 18 losses). Littrell’s final victory was over Purdue 6-3.

Cat, Card Changes

For all of you college football fans who are concerned about probable changes in the way a national champion is crowned, you can quit worrying if you are a UK or UofL fan.

UK simply isn’t likely ever to be strong enough to qualify for a chance at the crown. UofL most likely will not be a member of a big-power conference that will open the door for a try for a title.

I am most concerned about UK crying about having to play nine Southeastern Conference games. Surely we won’t see the Wildcats’ brass begging out of the annual game against Louisville. I guarantee we will if the Cardinals twist the Cats’ tails in the first game of this year’s season.

The Cats should play nine SEC opponents plus UofL and rotate to play two games each year against Western or Eastern or Murray. Keep the money in the state. Our schools need it.

Magic a Dodger!

I wondered what Rachel Robinson was thinking when she saw Magic Johnson in a Dodgers’ baseball uniform after the deal that Magic was involved in when the Los Angeles team changed ownership.

In case you don’t know, Rachel was Jackie Robinson’s wife. He was the man who broke the color line in baseball.

With the permission of Kentucky’s Albert “Happy” Chandler, baseball’s commissioner, the Brooklyn team was allowed to sign Robinson.

When she saw Magic in the Dodger shirt as part of the team’s ownership, I’ll bet that she thought, “Now we’ve  come all the way.” I assume that you know that Rachel Robinson was black.

I was lucky to see 20 or so games in Cincinnati  during Jackie’s rookie season at Crosley Field.

I would go to 307 Vine St. in downtown Cincinnati and get a ticket for each of the Reds’ games with the Dodgers. The crowds were huge, with chairs being added down  foul lines and around the Crosley Field outfield terrace. Yes, there were a lot of ground-rule doubles.

I would sit smack dab in the middle of Dodger fans who had arrived on excursion trains from throughout the South. You can’t imagine the buzz from the fans when Robbie came to bat.

Media Watch

No one in the newspaper business stays busier and produces more than The C-J’s Jody Demling. Not only does he do a bang-up job for the Louisville paper, but also for USA Today, for which he had the lead Belmont story on Monday –  Gannett owns both papers.

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Category: Earl Cox on Sports

About the Author (Author Profile)

Earl Cox, Sports Columnist
502.897.8910

Earl doesn¹t just write about sports legends, he counts many of them as his
friends. A member of the Kentucky Athletic Hall of Fame, he has been writing
about sports for 60 years. Incidentally, that¹s about how long it’s been
since he¹s cleaned his desk but he knows where everything is.

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