Monday, May 4, 2009

Monday morning musings

The way I see it, a one-year marriage between hometown boy Greg Paulus and Syracuse football is a no-brainer. I mean, it's not like the former Duke University point guard would be keeping the next Donovan McNabb on the bench. Paulus, who was the National Gatorade Player of the Year while playing quarterback for Syracuse CBA five years ago, would create immediate excitement in the moribund SU program and put fannies in the seats. In the best-case scenario, SU goes 6-5 and ekes its way into some insignificant bowl game. In the worst-case scenario, Paulus bombs out and SU goes 3-8 or 2-9, which is what they're predicted to finish anyway. There's a lot to gain and little to lose.


I saw Paulus play football several times in my previous incarnation as a newspaper columnist, and he is, far and away, the best high school quarterback I've witnessed. To me, Canandaigua's Billy Scharr had a stronger arm, but Paulus had incredible vision and was a great decision-maker. He always threw the ball to the right receiver. I wonder if he ever second guesses his decision to play basketball at Duke, where his career didn't live up to the hype. I remember how his father pushed for him to play football (Greg had offers from a boatload of schools, including Notre Dame and nearby SU). But hoops was Greg's first love. And having a degree from the Harvard of the South isn't too shabby.


I'm still wondering where the historical preservationists and politicians were four years ago when the new Yankee Stadium was being ram-rodded through. The bottom line is that there was no need to leave the original stadium, other than to line the Steinbrenners' pockets with more gold. There weren't any engineering studies proclaiming the old joint unsound. Plus, the Yankees were selling 4 million tickets a season for a major league record four straight years. It's not like people had stopped coming, the way they are now, thanks to the Yankees price-gouging.


Don't get me wrong, I love Coach Mac. He was the man who made Syracuse University football relevant again. I just wonder if his overall accomplishments merited election into the College Football Hall of Fame. As my good friend and longtime newspaper colleague Frank Bilovsky points out - Dick MacPherson never won a major bowl game and it wasn't until a few years ago that Penn State's Joe Paterno, winner of three times as many games as Mac, was inducted. Again, I love Coach Mac, I just don't know if he did enough at UMass and SU to warrant induction. What do you think?


I highly recommend a visit to to read a letter that late Bills quarterback and longtime Western New York Congressman Jack Kemp wrote to his 17 grandchildren the day after Barack Obama was elected president. It is an eloquent and upbeat concession essay from a man who had strongly supported John McCain, but who still understood the historical significance of Obama's election. It's a must-read for conservatives and liberals alike, and speaks volumes about what a gracious man Kemp was, even in defeat.


GLSCWS said...

Scott- happy to be part of your blog site. I am a neighbor of Joe Peluso and a big Buffalo Bills and SU fan. I'll spread the word and wish you the best with this venture!

Scott Pitoniak said...

Thanks for taking a look. Any friend of Joe's is a friend of mine. Please sign up for daily updates and get as many people to sign up as you can.