Sports columns

A funny game

I know I have said it before here, but I feel the need to say it again: Golf is a funny game. You just plain never know from day to day, week to week, month to month, what is going to happen.That was really born out on Sunday during the U.S. Open, where Jim Furyk finished his round about three ...

From rivals to friends

If you played high school sports, you had a rival. Their fans were the worst, some players riled you up and there was automatically an added electric atmosphere whenever you played them.But here's the thing - and this especially pertains to athletes in high school or ones that just graduated: ...

Ali, Howe were true sports icons

In the past few days, the sports world has lost two true icons in Muhammad Ali and Gordie Howe.The two were athletes who were more than excellent in their respective sports of boxing and hockey - they were standard-bearers.In Ali's case, he had a knack for wearing several hats.When he declared ...

Tough travel takes bite out of Sharks

I want to start first by congratulating my favorite National Hockey League club, the San Jose Sharks, for competing in the most successful season in club history. They returned to the playoffs. They beat the Los Angeles Kings in those playoffs. They made it back to the Western Conference ...

Few things I learned my first year in the Copper Country

Der-whine. That is how you pronounce my last name, which - through my first sports season as sports editor at the Daily Mining Gazette - with being in a new area, has led to the No. 1 question I get asked: How do you pronounce your last name? A lot of people go with "der-own" which makes sense, ...

Pro sports seasons run too long

It's been an argument that I've staged for at least 30 years.Or at least since the National Hockey League and National Basketball League expanded their playoff formats.The postseason in those two sports have been extended far too long.Here were are almost to mid-June and the finals in the NHL ...

The best and worst of times

It happened long ago, but the date of June 5, 1968 remains as clear in my mind as if it took place yesterday.The year 1968 was once described as "a crack in the mirror of time" by a noted historian of the time.With its riots, assassinations and wars breaking out everywhere, it was a dangerous ...

Salani’s dismissal at Finlandia needs clarification

Like most people, I was very surprised to hear that Finlandia University had dismissed longtime athletic director/coach Chris Salani, recently.I've been around long enough to understand, at least to a degree, why universities make decisions when it comes to personnel.The reasons are varied, ...

Tampa’s Cup

I would like to start this week's column by first thanking everyone who texted, emailed and called me to remind me that the Tampa Bay Lightning won a Stanley Cup in 2004. To be honest, I had completely forgotten at the moment I was writing my piece. I am glad to see how many of you read my ...

Ausmus has to go

Having lost a job or two in my lifetime, I must admit that calling for the firing of anyone is a tough thing to do.But in the case of Detroit Tigers manager Brad Ausmus, the choice is clear: He has to go.The Tigers have floundered for the most part in the tenure of the present field boss.Last ...

NHL Playoffs worth watching

After years of the Chicago Blackhawks and Los Angeles Kings dominating the National Hockey League playoffs, it has been refreshing this season to see both take an early exit from the competition. With three teams left who have never won a Stanley Cup, we as viewers are most likely going to see ...

The best interview that wasn’t done

Just a recently, a local sports fan asked me who were the most interesting people I have ever interviewed.Pondering for a few moments, I answered that interviewing Sparky Anderson, Warren Spahn and the duo of Herman Gundlach and Dominic Vairo all were in the tossup category for that ...

Baseball is back

After a few weeks of quiet, we are back to multiple sports taking place at the same time, meaning we are back to our busy schedules each week, which is fine by me. I have been excited and happy to start catching some baseball games throughout the area.I have seen all five local teams: Houghton, ...

New Lions GM faces acid test

It would be difficult to find a team in the National Football League that has bungled the annual college draft more often than the Detroit Lions.This is the team that has consistently made selections that boggle the mind.They once picked quarterback Andre Ware in the first round, ignoring the ...

The thrill is gone for some sports

Chalk it down to old age or whatever, but I recently missed two events I would have never dreamed of passing up just a few years ago.One was the Masters golf tournament, the other was the home opener for the Detroit Tigers.Now, I have no idea why I followed the Masters so avidly all those ...

Weather always has the last say

It was just a few weeks ago that a mid-March thaw had spring sports coaches and players thinking about a rare early start.As I pen this column today, there are snow flurries flying outside. The temperatures are in the low 20s and there's a bitterly cold wind coming out of the west.It's what I ...

Now the fun begins

It may seem mean to those sports which are just starting up like baseball and softball, but I am back with another hockey column this week. The National Hockey League regular season just ended, and I have to say, it really and truly did not end the way I thought it might.There were so many ...

Tigers could be good or bad

Depending on which national baseball publication you believe, this year's edition of the Detroit Tigers either will win the whole thing, or fall on their faces.If that sounds like hedging, well, it's the truth.Any team that can field a lineup that includes Miguel Cabrera, J.T. Martinez, Ian ...

The dead sports season has arrived

My first experience with the dead season in local sports took place in early April of 1981.It was my first full year as sports editor at the Daily Mining Gazette and what a year it had been.It started in the fall with football, which had several highlights on the local and collegiate scene.In ...

All-U.P. selections are always talking points

Ah, All-U.P. basketball awards, nothing riles up local towns and fanbases more than those selections. With Wednesday's meeting set to decide this year's class, it reminded me how the All-U.P. basketball selections made by the Upper Peninsula Sportswriters and Sportscasters Association draw more ...