It ought to be an interesting few weeks, with the Daytona 500 and CIAA tournament coming up.
I used to go to the CIAA every year. Glad we finally get it in Charlotte. If you want to see folks who are true to their schools, spend some time in downtown -- I will never call it uptown -- Charlotte.
But before we move ahead, there is some unfinished business with which to contend.
Officials did not cost Seattle Super Bowl XL. Pittsburgh did get almost every marginal call. But officials did not give Big Ben eight seconds to find a receiver on third-and-forever. Officials did not enable Fast Willie to run 75 yards for a touchdown. Officials did not call the play on which Randle El took the handoff and threw the perfect pass to Hines Ward.
Officials are not the reason Duke rules ACC basketball. When the Tar Heels ruled, they got most of the calls. Officials are influenced by sustained success. At some level they think, would a Blue Devil commit a dumb foul such as that? Just as the champ usually wins the marginal rounds in boxing, the top teams usually get the marginal calls in basketball.
The Florida Marlins are not coming to Charlotte. I wrote that in November. Only the name of the team changes. Some team gets desperate for a new stadium or love, they invoke Charlotte. How do you think a Major League Baseball team would draw here on a weeknight against a nondescript opponent? How do the Bobcats draw on weeknights? How do you think the Panthers would draw on Tuesday against San Francisco?
Let's review. The officials didn't beat Seattle. Pittsburgh did. Duke gets calls, but that's the unofficial prerogative of the top teams. Major League Baseball is not coming to Charlotte, although if we're smart, we'll build a stadium downtown to accommodate a minor league (minor league is not a bad word) team. Daytona Beach and the CIAA await.