Happy Wednesday everyone, here's my Top 5 for April 4, 2012 from Len Berman at www.ThatsSports.com.
1. Quick Hits
- Baylor beat Notre Dame 80-61 to finish 40-0 and win the NCAA Women's Basketball Championship.
- A 31-year-old man who was shot in the leg during the Lexington, Kentucky "celebration" Monday night had to have his foot amputated.
- Red Sox closer Andrew Bailey will undergo thumb surgery. He'll miss significant time.
- The New York Rangers clinch the top seed in the East for the first time since their Stanley Cup year of 1994.
- The non-Japanese portion of the baseball season begins tonight with the Miami Marlins hosting the champion Cardinals.
The Baylor women ran the table. They feature the best women's player in the country in Brittney Griner. Notre Dame coach Muffet McGraw caused a stir when she said that Griner, who has a deep voice, was "like a guy playing with women." Griner said she took the comment as a compliment. She will return for her senior year at Baylor, unlike the Kentucky freshmen who are expected to jump to the NBA. That's because the NBA pays millions while the WNBA pays thousands.
Subscriber D.R., an educator, has this suggestion for the "one and done" basketball players. He says, "Require that these kids be academically eligible throughout the entire year; that is, if they don't pass their courses in the fall semester, they don't play in the spring... that will demand that at least for one year, they are students." Not bad, but the truth is, there is no solution. The kids have a right to turn pro no matter how much teeth-gnashing we do.
3. Safe and Sound
Thank God it appears that miraculously nobody was killed in those Dallas area tornadoes yesterday. Texas Rangers catcher Mike Napoli tweeted out this video of the winds picking up at the Ballpark in Arlington. Hours later an exhibition game was played between the Rangers and a Mexican League team.
4. Whoa Nellie
I know what you're thinking. That I'm going to rip the election of Don Nelson into the Basketball Hall of Fame. Yes he's the NBA's winningest coach, but he never coached a team to the championship. And yes I'm not in favor of "numbers collectors" making halls of fame. But here's my cop-out. When I was a young Boston Celtics TV announcer, Nellie was on the Celts. And I have a special place in my heart for all those guys like John Havlicek, Paul Silas, Dave Cowens, Jo Jo White, Don Chaney, etc. In those days, when the commercial flight landed in Boston after a road trip, one of the Celtics, was as likely as anyone else, to give me a lift home. So damn all the negative stuff. Nelson was a five-time champ as a player, and three-time NBA Coach of the Year. And come to think of it, Reggie Miller and Ralph Sampson never won NBA titles. So for all of the above reasons, Nellie's a Hall of Famer in my book.
5. And the Winner Is...
You guys are good. We had a winner who missed the exact final score of the NCAA championship game by one point. We had two runner-ups who missed it by two points.
The final score was Kentucky 67 Kansas 59.
Before the tournament began, David L. from Fanwood, New Jersey had Kentucky winning 67-58.
Gedalia W. from Lawrence, New York had it 67-61. L. J. S. from New York City had it 66-60.
**David wins an autographed copy of my New York Times best seller The Greatest Moments in Sports.
**Gedalia and L.J. win That's Sports baseball/golf caps.
Happy Birthday: Reds third baseman Scott Rolen. 37.
Bonus Birthday: Poet and author Maya Angelou. 84.
Today in Sports: North Carolina State shocks Houston to win the NCAA basketball title. 1983.
Bonus Event: A first. The top five songs on the Billboard Top 100 were all by the Beatles. 1964
1) Can't Buy Me Love
2) Twist and Shout
3) She Loves You
4) I Want to Hold Your Hand
5) Please Please Me
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