Wow! This Sports Week Sucks.


By Paul M. Banks

It’s no coincidence that a lot of people working in the sports media industry take their vacation this week; or at least in July during the summer lull. And that horrible summer lull rears it ugly head this week with the slowest sports news day of the year. That’s right- the dreaded day after the MLB All-Star Game, where there is NOTHING AT ALL…except golf. This tortuous 24 hours seems bad enough, but it completes a three day cycle in which…

…the first day grants us just Chris Berman, the bloviating blowhole from Bristol narrating the Home Run Derby. 

…the second day brings us only the glorified MTV Rock ‘n’ Jock Softball game commonly known as the MLB All-Star Game. Except when Bret Michaels pitched to Pauly Shore, it didn’t determine home field advantage for the World Series.

And why does this, an exhibition game, determine home field advantage? I guess Bud Selig is a special needs child. But the MLB All-Star game isn’t all bad; it’s still a lot cooler than the NFL Pro Bowl.chris-berman-party-animal

These three days are the nadir of a down period that starts up as the NBA and NHL Finals conclude (although the NBA Draft and the week leading up to it are a nice distraction from the drought lying ahead in July) and mercifully ends when NFL training camps open. Yes, there’s OTAs, but c’mon who really cares about OTAs? That’s like spring college football. YAWN! And although preseason football isn’t the most exciting thing in the world (the vaunted Caleb Hanie to Brandon Rideau pass and catch combination will be on display) it’s an especially refreshing oasis if your MLB team is out of it that year…or every year should you happen to be a Kansas City Royals or Pittsburgh Pirates fan.

I know everyone loves the summer and it’s the only season that people have a checklist for, or carefully monitor the progress of. (How often have you heard a friend say “summer’s almost half-way over” or “one of my main goals this summer is to….”) Sure summer is a fine season, but it’s also when every television show airs reruns, when web traffic hits the sea floor on 4th of July weekend and when sports has nothing to offer except baseball. As much fun as summer can be, it’s entertainment and sports media options might as well feature tumbleweeds, because it feels like a dried up deserted village right now.

For people who love college football and college basketball the most, it’s an abhorrent situation. It makes me count down the days till November when you have NBA, NFL, and NHL all going at the same time, along with my favorite, Big Ten men’s hoops and Big Ten football. A lot of people believe the first weekend of March Madness to be the best couple days within the sporting calendar- I agree. But for a 2-3 week stretch: nothing comes even remotely close to touching early/mid November. Can I just stay on this vacation until then?