The season ended Sunday in a stunning fashion. (Yeah, I know, you could give a shit. But I’m going to briefly mention it anyway, so incredible was the conclusion.)
Manchester United is the New York Yankees of EPL. They win most all of the time. Their crosstown rival is Manchester City. Which hadn’t won a title since the reign of Henry VIII. Until Mother’s Day.
I’m not going to explain the whole ranking system over there. One, because I’m not that familiar with it. Two, because, as mentioned above, you could give a shit. I will say you get points for wins and points for ties and goal differential matters.
All Man City needed was a W on Sunday to clinch it’s first title since beheadings were all the rage. At home, they were playing Queens Park Rangers, a squad on the verge of relegation. (Okay, a quick primer. In the EPL, the bottom 3 teamsin the final standings go to the minors for next season, while the top 3 from there move up to the Bigs. A pretty nifty set up if you ask me.)
The point is QPR is not a very good team, yet led 2-1, after 90 minutes with stoppage time still to play. (Primer Part Deux. In soccer, there’s a running clock, so minutes are added at the end for injury stoppages, so that there will be 90 minutes of actual play.) The Carolina blue clad Man City faithful were ready to commit hari kiri.
Until, miraculously, their boys tallied twice in stoppage to win the team’s first title since Anne Boleyn was on the cover of “People.” Man U finished second. So, this was like the year the BoSox came back from three games down to beat the Yankees in the ALCS, then won their first Series since buggy whips were still a commodity people considered buying. If you care enough to listen to some calls of the winning goal, check this link out.
Pretty neat. Even if, as advised by Bob, my soccer buddy who loves Arsenal, Man City just bought a bunch of good players for tens of millions to become relevant. Hey, if they can do it in the Colonies, why not back in Merrie Ol’?
In case you care, Bolton, Blackburn and Wolverhampton’s Wolves bit the relegation bullet. And Arsenal + my Tottenhem Hotspur finished 3d and 4th, meaning they’ll enter the Champions League next year. Which I’d explain, if I had any clue how it worked.
And, if you gave a shit.
* * * * *
Which brings me to the topic of another league, about which you may care . . . if you’re a U of L fan. The Big LEast.
Should they stay? Or should they go?
Actually, that’s not the dilemma, though it does give me an excuse for a musical interlude. Cue The Clash.
It ain’t should the Cards stay or go, it’s will they be given the option by the Big 12 (Now 10) or perhaps the ACC?
If so, it’ll be good bye Newark, hello Manhattan . . . Kansas.
It’s at this point when you are probably waiting for some inside rumor and innuendo, of which I have none. I’m hearing the same things you are. Florida State might inexplicably jump from the ACC to the Big 12 (Now 10) at the behest of the pigskin-loving Board of Trustees, if not the stand pat university prexy.
And, if they go, does Louisville hitch a ride? The Cards would hit the Big LEast exit buzzer faster than that IBM computer that won “Jeopardy.”
Makes sense to me. The Seminoles add value to the football package. (Yes, folks, in case you’ve been doing your Rip Van Winkle imitation, it’s all about TV money.) But Louisville would add value to the basketball package. (Actually, since our burg is the #1 TV market for college hoops, the Cards could do the same for the hoops-oriented ACC. Yet everything one hears indicates that league is a little too snooty to ask a municipal school like Louisville to join.)
I’m told that Charlie Strong, with the encouragement of AD Tom Jurich, is selling recruits on the Cards based on the fact that joining the Big 12 (Now 10) is an inevitable. I’ve even been told that Trinity blue chipper James Quick, one of the most highly recruited lads in the land, will matriculate on the Belknap Campus . . . if the Cards join you know what.
All of which is a lot of rehash, without much new info. But, hey, you wanted to hear about more than soccer, right?
– Seedy K