Tuesday, March 29, 2011, 9:15 a.m.
UPDATED at 8:43 p.m.
We're rebooting Word on the Street. Check here each day for a look at what they're saying in the Washington sports media and about the D.C. sports world.
By Benjamin StandigCSNwashington.com
For the moment, forget about the contentious and infuriating battle between the NFL players and owners. (I know, that was easy.) Weve got a better and juicier old school vs. new school labor skirmish brewing, and the latest resounding uppercut was thrown by a certain Redskins radio analyst with a penchant for going after quarterbacks.
Drew Brees should keep his mouth shut. We would have put a target on his back.
If youre still not sure who the quotable defender is, the articles headline gives it away: Attention Drew Brees, Sam Huff has a few questions for you.
We know Huff did not have a lot of love for quarterbacks during the Hall of Fame linebackers playing career, which began with the New York Giants and ended with the burgundy and gold. Apparently, he still doesnt, at least when it comes to the New Orleans Saints Brees, one of the plaintiffs in a lawsuit filed earlier this month in an attempt to end the NFL owners lockout.
Huff, a charter member of the NFL Players Association, apparently is peeved at Brees for previous statements the former Super Bowl MVP made about former players looking to the union for financial help. In author Evan Weiners story, Brees refers to retired players seeking aid because of their poor financial decisions:
They took their pensions early because they never went out and got a job. Theyve had a couple divorces And theyre coming to us to basically say, Please make up for my bad judgment. In that case, thats not our fault as players.
Forget analysis from NFL writers like Ryan OHalloran or Rich Tandler. We might need Larry Merchant and Jim Lampley for this brouhaha.
Marco Sturm was not the flashiest of the Capitals' recent acquisitions, but the waiver-wire addition has provided the exact kind of veteran depth a team slotted second in the latest Hockey News power poll needs to succeed come the postseason.
In the midst of preparing VCU to play in the Final Four, Rams coach Shaka Smart is also coping with the loss off his 90-year old grandfather, who passed away this morning, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch. Smart, raised by a single mother, said at Tuesdays news conference that Walter King was probably the second-biggest influence of my life.
VCU ruined a lot of brackets this month. Heres a T-shirt commemorating the experience (link via Darren Rovell). Speaking of the Rams, this captioned photo jabbing at Dick Vitale for being one of the biggest voices bashing VCUs inclusion into the field is great. I hear crow tastes like chicken.
Even though VCU likely would not have been in the NCAA tournament this year without the increased field size to 68, Seth Davis of Sports Illustrated (by way of Bullis) pre-emptively says no way should the tournament expand to 96 teams. Lets hope the powers that be read this.
Yes, I think Id stop my car if directed by the worlds tallest (albeit unofficial) traffic cop. Alonzo Mourning did just that so a disabled person could cross the road (Zo is cool).
The latest mock draft from Rotoworlds Evan Silva has the Redskins selecting a quarterback at No. 10. Nope, not Cam Newton or Blaine Gabbert, but Jake Locker?!?! To quote my grandfather, oy vey. In Round 2, Silva has the Redskins selecting Iowas pass rushing defensive end Christian Ballard.
The Sports Fix (ESPN 980): Tom Penders, the longtime college basketball coach who spent three seasons helming George Washington, was all over the dial today promoting his new book "Dead Coach Walking" and laying some old-school wood to Georgetown and Patrick Ewing, among others.
During his 36 years of coaching, Penders has coached at a wide range of schools from a major athletic power (Texas) to those with limited resources (Fordham, Columbia) and he was asked by Thom Loverro whether a smaller program might look at the success of Butler or VCU and think a larger investment in its own basketball program could be a viable option to raise the schools overall profile.
Penders said teams in Division I should have that goal in mind, but many dont, citing his time at Fordham (1978-86). The program had a limited recruiting budget and the team shared its practice facility with pigeons that were dumping all over me, Penders said. Thats when, out of nowhere, the coach did his own share of dumping on the Hoyas.
Penders said: We had a president that used to be on the board of trustees at Georgetown, Father OHare. He took over in my seventh year, and he wrote me this long letter or memo asking me why we werent just like Georgetown. And I asked him, I said, Can Patrick Ewing be admitted here? And he said, Oh yeah.
And I showed him an application and an old transcript from Patrick Ewing in high school, and he looked at me and he said this is either not his transcript or this is not the same guy and this and that. It had Rindge and Latin from Cambridge Ewing's high school on it.
And I am not at all opposed for liberal admission policies and special admits, and Patrick was certainly worth everything for Georgetown. He never got in trouble, he never did anything wrong. They basically created an art department for him at Georgetown. The Jesuit priests of Georgetown knew what they were doing, but this guy who came to Fordham was either smoking funny cigarettes or he had a needle in his arm that I couldnt see.
Earlier, Penders was on with The Sports Junkies (106.7 The Fan) and had some pointed comments about ESPNs coverage of the sport (They really only care about the big power leagues) and said the folks in Bristol run college basketball. Penders did offer praise to Maryland coach Gary Williams for the way Williams has navigated through the often murky and vile recruiting waters. Hes never taken a walk on the wild side. Hes always done it the right way, the straight way, Penders said.