The 2011 season is just about as mysterious as the one that will proceed it, if there is one at all.
It’s been a steady stream of dark days in just about every major American sport, and the coming seasons are riddled with just about as many question marks as the one we’re already stuck in.
It’s the offseason for the NFL but who knows if there will be a next season? And if there is, at what cost? How much with the nearly $9 billion per year revenue will be divvied up between the NFL and the players union, and if they do come to an agreement, how many games will they try to cram into the season? 18 games? Super Bowl XLV MVP Aaron Rodgers suffered two concussions in a two-month span, so let’s see if we can tack on a couple more games and make “America’s player” retire early.
So if there is no NFL season, at least we can hang our hats on college football, right? Sure, the Football Bowl Subdivision will have a season next year, but let’s see how many convicted criminals the best teams can stick on the field at once, shall we?
The Pitt Panthers, who traditionally are among the Big East Conference’s best, had 22 players who have been arrested — 22! Before former Panthers coach Dave Wannstedt was run out of town, he apparently had no repercussions of fielding his very own Gridiron Gang.
It didn’t stop there. Sports Illustrated teamed up with CBS News to reveal the results of their six-month long investigation. Among Sports Illustrated’s 2010 preseason Top-25, just one team, TCU, had zero players criminally charged. Even perennial feel-good story Boise State had 16 players charged.
In the NBA, it’s hard to even pledge allegiance to any one particular team anymore. If you’ve bought a jersey of one of your favorite players, chances are you already subjected it to the back of the closet. If you haven’t bought a jersey, don’t. Four of last season’s top-10 scoring leaders are in different cities, different uniforms.
The Miami Heat, who have sunk nearly twice as much money into three players as the entire remaining roster combined, have tampered with several different starting lineups. The New York Knicks, meanwhile, practically gutted their roster in exchange for Carmelo Anthony and Chauncey Billups. Of the 30 NBA teams now, eight are worth watching. You may like it. Lebron James admits he likes it. I don’t.
I would much rather go back to the days when the Detroit Pistons suddenly contended for a Finals title with a roster of misfits.
I would also rather watch just 16 NFL regular-season games next year and some of these NCAA athletes in orange jumpsuits rather than collegiate uniforms.
Never thought I would say this, but the MLB is, well, the MLB, and is safe for now.