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Archive for the ‘Women's sports’ Category

Expounding upon the value of mentors strikes me as a lot like talking about the necessity of good nutrition and getting enough sleep. It’s common sense, but it bears repeating endlessly.

The National Women’s Law Center is sponsoring a “Blog to Rally for Girls’ Sports Day” today, Dec. 8, where they are asking bloggers to write about the value of girls’ and women’s sports and what that means to them.

I write most of the entries on this blog about women’s sports, so on this day, I want to focus on the value of mentors … and the value of appreciating them. And in doing so, I also get to tell you the rest of a story that I wrote recently.
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The Division I NCAA volleyball bracket came out Sunday, and I kept looking at it, thinking I had to be missing something.

“This can’t be as ridiculous as it seems,” I thought. “It can’t be. This is a joke.”

I rather quickly wrote a story for ESPN.com about the bracket, suggesting Penn State got what looked like an absurdly easy road to the Final Four, and that the Seattle region looked like it was really difficult.
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When I was a young teen, Pete Axthelm wrote a sports commentary piece in “Newsweek” that really ticked me off. The details may be a little hazy after three decades. But if memory serves, he was lamenting the fact that the Washington Redskins had been squeezed out of an NFL playoff spot because my team, the St. Louis Cardinals, had lost listlessly to another team.

And I thought, “Tough luck! Why didn’t your dumb Redskins just win more games?” The Cardinals had enough to be worried about doing damage to their own selves year after year, let alone getting blamed for hated Washington’s disappointment.
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Today, Brenda Van Lengen and I will be over at Alvamar ┬áCountry Club in Lawrence, Kan., ┬ádoing “She’s Got Game.” KU is hosting the Marilyn Smith Invitational, and so we’ll talk a little golf, some volleyball and you know we’ll get in hoops, too.

Now, are you wondering who Marilyn Smith is? She’s one of the original founders of the LPGA, a Sunflower State native who went to the University of Kansas back in the days when there was no women’s golf team at the school.
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On the radio

I’ve been dealing with a computer problem the last few days … hopefully, it will be resolved soon, and I’ll have some new blog posts up quickly. In the meantime, today I’ll be doing “She’s Got Game” on SportsRadioKC.com from 1-2 p.m. Central time. Brenda VanLengen is showing her kids around Galveston, Texas, so I’ll try to yammer through the whole hour.

I’m scheduled to have a couple of guests, each with their own insight into the WNBA. I’ll be talking with Dawn Trudeau of Seattle’s Force 10 Hoops ownership group about the success of the Storm and various topics such as what the independent owners think of the impending NBA lock out next year and how that may impact the WNBA.

Also joining me will be David Woods of the Indianapolis Star. David will offer his thoughts on who the real Indiana Fever team is: the one that has lost its last three games … or the one that won five in a row before that?

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As you’re probably aware, a federal judge ruled last week that Quinnipiac University in Connecticut could not count competitive cheerleading as a varsity sport, and thus had to reinstate volleyball at least for another year. After that, the school might still eliminate volleyball if it finds a satisfactory way, according to the judge, to comply with Title IX.

I was asked on an ESPN.com chat last week what I thought of the ruling, and said I was still sorting my way through it. And here’s why. It’s not because I disagree with the judge’s decision. I think it was absolutely the right one.

The trickier issue, to me, comes in trying to determine what is a “sport.” I would guess a lot of people might think competitive cheer is just some made-up hokum that should be getting left behind as we start the second decade of the 2000s, rather than being debated as a “sport.”
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Just a quick note: I do have the ESPN.com chat today at 2 p.m. Eastern time. That should be a regular thing each Thursday at the same time throughout WNBA season, provided there are no conflicts with travel … or I don’t find myself stranded on a deserted island.

A deserted island without internet access, that is.

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