RIP Coach…

Don Shula was an icon… he belongs on the Mount Rushmore of Head Coaches in the NFL. Before Belichick there was Don Shula, he played for Paul Brown and Weeb Ewbank, his first head coaching job was in Baltimore in 1963, after Ewbank was fired. He was the losing coach in Super Bowl III when the Jets beat the Colts… He was a 4 time AFC Champion, winning two Super Bowls including while being the architect of the ONLY NFL team to go an entire season undefeated. He is a member of the Pro Football HOF and is the winningest coach in the history of the NFL with 347 total wins, including playoffs, and in second place is George Halas with 324 and the only active coach that is closest to him is, of course, Belichick with 304.

I was never a Dolphins fan, but I understood and respected Shula’s place in history. He coached some of the best players in the history of the NFL from Johnny Unitas to Larry Csonka, Bob Griese, and Dan Marino. Players I idolized growing up, and part of what made me a fan of the NFL. The death of Don Shula is the death of an era, it is the death of an icon that was part of the building blocks of today’s NFL. That’s who Don Shula was an innovator, he was a legend, he was part of NFL coaching royalty. He deserves to be mentioned in the same breath of Halas, Lombardi, Brown, Noll, and Landry. Comparable coaches in the modern era NFL are Belichick, Gibbs, Parcels, Walsh, Coughlin, and Cowher, but the modern NFL coaches would not be as successful as they are without Don Shula.

So with today’s news of his passing, I offer my condolences to the Shula family, the Miami Dolphins Fanbase, as well as the entire NFL fanbase, on the passing of this legend. A piece of my childhood has been lost, and I am extremely sad because of it, although I understand he was old, 90 years old to be exact, it doesn’t change the fact that part of me looks at this and can’t help but look at my own mortality. I was alive when Shula was in his prime, and I remember when he retired, so I am part of the generation that witnessed the growing up and maturity of today’s NFL. Today’s generation of fans owes a huge thank you to legends like Don Shula for what the game has become.

Thank you, coach, for your contributions to the NFL, to the game of football as a whole, and thank you for your dedication to the game you loved.

May you rest in peace…

Scott “The Sports Nerd” Wright

 

I Got Nothing…

I got nothing… 

I’m trying to come up with an epic post, something that will shake the foundation of the sports world, but…  I got nothing.

There are no active sports going on… I am watching a replay of OSU vs Michigan from 2016 right now, that’s how pathetic I am and how starved for sports I am right nw.  I have also been watching the 2004 Stanley Cup Playoffs – Featuring the Tampa Bay Lightning vs The Montreal Canadians…  This sucks, I can’t stand there being no live sports to watch, hell I would even welcome an NBA regular season game between Phoenix and Brooklyn, that’s how desperate I am.

The NFL Draft was fine, it went off without a hitch, no tech issues, not hiccups and hell even the Commissioner embraced the virtual boos he actually been in Vegas.  Despite all of that we still have No MLB… No NHL…  No NBA… What is a sports fan to do?  I look forward to things getting back to normal, where I can watch a LIVE sporting event and then critiquing said live game afterwards. 

For those in the same boat as I am, let me just say, the world continues to spin on its axis, the days move on, time doesn’t stop, and The Sports Nerd  does not rest on his laurels… let me present a shameless plug for the weekly show that I host, along with my good friends, @jongolson Eliot “Big E” Lomba, @kencostlow and Bob “The Beer Man Pizor” aptly called “The Sports Nerds”.  We have been doing this show in one form or another since 2012 (maybe longer) and have been entertaining folks of all sports fans since then.  We live stream on Facebook and YouTube each and every Sunday night, no matter what.  it is unscripted, it is non-rehearsed, and it is always entertaining.

If you find yourself bored at home during this pandemic, hop on over to my Facebook or YouTube page and listen in as we discuss the sports world and pop culture, no subject is off limits and we spend 90 minutes coming up with content that seems rehearsed, seems scripted, but to be honest, we have no idea what the hell we are doing.  For glorious NSFW fun, come join us as we reveal ourselves as armatures, not professionals in the sports world.

Thank you for reading….

Scott “The Sports Nerd” Wright


Join us each and every Sunday Night at 7pm Eastern for

“The Sports Nerds” – Entertaining the Internet since 2012

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Join us Sunday nights where I and my friends

@jongolson Eliot Lomba, @KenCostlow and

Bob “The Beer Man Pizor as we discuss the world
 
Of Sports




What Do I Do Without Sports?

April 27th 2020, day 41 of quarantine and working from home….

I need a haircut… I need to go for a drive…  I want to go into the office…  but here I am, sheltered in a 2 bedroom apartment with my two kitties, sitting in front of my computer screen all day either working or watching Twitter and all the drama going on passing away the hours and what has eluded me all these weeks is that I have only made 2 blog posts during this time, and none of them have been sports related, just COVID-19 related.  So in all reality as my good friend @jongolson tells me, I have been slacking, lazy and down right stupid for not taking advantage of the situation.  I’ve posted replays of our weekly show The Sports Nerds but no posts about the sports world.  Granted, there hasn’t been much going on in the sports world the last couple of months but that hasn’t stopped our shows and we have managed to do a full 90 mins each week with no problem.

The NBA , MLB, NHL, NASCAR, PGA, Formula One, Premier League, and pretty much every other sport that usually would be going on right now has been interrupted, postponed, canceled, or forgotten.  This is a rough time for me, because as an avid sports fan, I would normally be involved in the NHL Playoffs right about now, but because of the pandemic, I have been watching a lot of Netflix, Amazon Video, and Disney+ the last few weeks.  The NCAA Men’s Basketball tournament was canceled,  MLB Opening day has been postponed, The Masters was moved to November and the only excitement that has occurred was last week’s NFL Draft, which was done remotely by all 32 teams, along with the Commissioner and the TV networks, NFLN, ESPN & ABC.  As mentioned on The Sports Nerds last night, I thought it was a spectacular success and both the NFL and all of the networks did a fantastic job in entertaining us Thursday, Friday and Saturday with their broadcast of all seven rounds of the draft.  There was drama, good stories, great background on the players, and a peek inside the home life of all 32 coaches and GM’s while they were drafting.

My Cleveland Browns did pretty well, addressing needs and getting players that can start day one, plus it appears that for the first time in years the front office and the coach are on the same page and have the same goals and objectives.  This is a fresh look on this franchise as in the past the GM and Head Coach never agreed on anything regarding the direction they wanted the team to go and were always arguing and undermining each other behind the scenes.  I am pleased with how the draft played out and look forward to the fall when hopefully we will get some football. 

There are plenty of stories out there in the sports world, too many for me to cover in one post.  I’m gonna pace myself and use the rest of this week to cover what I can, as I don’t want to be long winded in my posts.  I Have been known to create blogs that run for days, but tonight I am going to just start with this and save other topics for many more posts the rest of the week.  Please look for them to come across the blockchain as the week progresses… I hope you are all well and safe. 

Scott “The Sports Nerd” Wright

I hope you are well…

Tuesday, April 7, 2020…  I’m sitting here in what I call my bunker home office, and have been here for three weeks.   I have left my apartment maybe three or four times in that three weeks and I feel cooped up, I feel paralyzed, trapped in a cocoon, unable to do what I want, unable to travel, unable to drive to my office, and powerless to be in charge of how I live my life.  With all of that being said, I am in good spirits.  The bright side of this is that I am in good spirits, I have a positive attitude, and a positive outlook on the future.  As I have mentioned in a previous post, I am more fortunate than others during this time of crisis.  I still have my full time job, working from home, and have a strong support lifeline from not only my family, but from my wonderful co-workers, who have been awesome, a source of motivation, humor and focus.

My days are spent working from home, followed by binge-watching whatever show interests me at the time.  Tonight my show of choice is The West Wing, due to my desire of experiencing a more civil and normal administration, where all things are possible, the outcomes are positive and where the approach to government is more logical and focused on making the world a better place.  I can’t take the approach of the current administration where the main focus is how important the President’s Facebook popularity is as opposed to combating a disease that is ravaging the country and killing over 10,000 Americans.  While after calling COVID-19 a hoax created by the left in January and minimizing the risk, the people actually at risk of catching the virus is multiplying and dying on  daily basis.  As of the date and time of this posting, there are 396,416 Americans infected with COVID-19 and there are 12,813 deaths attributed to the disease.  source:  https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/#countries 

I am a small voice in an ocean of voices, and I don’t expect this post will see more than 100 views, but because of what is actually happening in the world, I feel I need to voice my opinion and try to get out the truth.  COVID-19 is not a hoax, it is not overblown, it is not left-wing propaganda, and it is definitely not something we should be ignoring.  The death rate from the virus is broken down by the following website:  https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/coronavirus-age-sex-demographics/  – Do not take it lightly, do not feel that because you are sequestered you are not susceptible to being infected.  Be vigilant, be careful, and be safe.  I ask this from the bottom of my heart, because I don’t want any of the people I care about to catch this thing.  It’s real, it’s deadly, and it does not discriminate…

I have diabetes (according to my Dr.) and I am at risk of dying from this virus if I catch it.  I am nervous, I am scared, and I pray for the health of both my elderly parents.  Please folks be smart…  don’t go to the beach… Don’t gather in crowds… Don’t go to that party you have been invited to… and above all… just. stay. home….

As you all know, I am a HUGE sports fan, and I would like noting more than to see all Sports begin playing again, especially NHL, MLB, Golf, and eventually NFL.  However, if there is even a .001% risk of others being infected because of the country’s need to see any sport be live again, I am against it.  It is not worth the cost of thousands of people being infected with this, in order for us to feel a semblance of normalcy.  If I have to stay cooped up in my home for two or three months in order for this pandemic to end, then I will stay home.  use Instacart to order Groceries… order delivery from your local restaurants to keep them in business… stay home… don’t go out… If you stay home, you are helping keep others from being infected.  I’m gonna sit here and watch The West Wing, because that universe is in a much better place than we are right now, and it is a much better reality than where we are right now…  No matter if it is real or not.. It is what I wish for the world and our country right now…

COVID-19 and how it has affected me…

So, long time no talk…

I have been quiet outside of a few FB posts and tweets over the last month simply because I honestly haven’t been able to actually grasp the enormity of our situation here in the US and the world.  I’m afraid to watch the news to the point I refuse to turn to CNN, MSNBC, FOXNEWS, or even my local news here in the Tampa Bay area.  I find myself binge watching old TV Shows like West wing, or  more recently, CNN’s decade series or their series on the history of comedy, just so that I can shield myself from the totally fucked up news and conditions that are entirely too ugly to bear.  People are dying from a nasty disease that, depending on who you believe, is either way overblown or is the greatest threat since The Spanish Flu of 1918.  To be honest, I don’t know when this will be over, I don’t know if I will get sick or not, as I still will need to go to the grocery store, liquor store (what?.. you think I am going without alcohol during this shit?) and laundromat (should have bought a washer long time ago, since my dryer works fine).  I happen to fall into that demographic that is susceptible to the virus because I am in my 50’s, overweight, diabetic, have high blood pressure, and have high cholesterol.  So, each time I go out to get essentials I need I am putting myself at risk.

Despite the fact I no longer watch the news, I still have a Twitter feed and I still log into FB every day.  Unfortunately I love both of these social media platforms, along with Instagram.  I follow a lot of sports personalities and political pundits, along with friends of mine that I have known for years on these platforms and I like to keep up with how they are doing and staying in contact with them.  This is a form of distraction to me, to escape the depressing life that I live, and to live vicariously through their experiences, because although I don’t post a lot, I get a kick out of their humor, their experiences and their day-to-day solutions on every day life.  There are a few that I interact with, mostly close friends or people I really enjoy, but for the most part I am a silent watcher that just flat out enjoys what people have to say.   Does that make me a lurker?  Maybe, but it is what I do and it works for me, and it keeps me sane.  I want to thank the many personalities I follow for keeping me sane in this atmosphere of dread, loneliness, and anxiety driven seclusion to keep myself safe and healthy.  Despite the fact I am eating way too much, staying stagnant, not going outside nearly enough, and constantly living in fear that any trip to the store could be the moment I become infected, I look forward to being able to actually see and spend time with friends/coworkers face to face and not via a video stream.

Today marks three weeks I have been working from home, I have left my home (I think) three times in those three weeks, all of which was a trip to the grocery store, and my cats are looking at me like, why are you still here?  Are you ever gonna leave so we can be here alone an do what we want to do?  I spend most of my time in my home office, behind my desk staring at a computer screen or at the TV wondering when I can go back to work with my colleagues that I miss so very much.  I feel very lucky that despite the conditions or circumstances, I am still able to work full time from home and not lose any income because of what is going on.  I work in an industry that provides reimbursement to employees of the public sector for their out of pocket medical expenses and thus we have an important role to play for these people.  We provide an important service, a sense of normalcy, and reassurance that these participants will not be financially strapped when a lot of Americans have lost their income or have seen a significant reduction in their income because of the COVID-19 pandemic.  This gives me purpose, drives me to excel at my job so that those that need what we provide can get what they need to keep going.  I feel truly blessed to be able to make a difference and I thank my company, the leadership and especially our IT department for allowing our entire company, all 110 employees, managers and executives to be able to work from home and continue the important work we do.

With all that being said…  the one thing that has affected me the most, brought the most sadness and been the largest cause of my anxiety, has been the fact that for nearly a month, we have had NO SPORTS.  I miss sports, hell I even miss the NBA at this point.  No MLB opening day, no NHL push for the Stanley Cup Playoffs, no NASCAR, and as of today, the most important and dose of reality for me, is no Masters.  I take the second week of April off  EVERY YEAR just so I can enjoy the greatest golf tournament in the world.  I will miss the lush green of Augusta National on my TV and computer screen this year, the Drive Pitch and Putt, the par-3 contest and of course, this year watching Tiger defend his championship from last year.  I sincerely hope CBS will rebroadcast last years tournament so that we can at least re-live the greatest comeback in sports history one more time.  The NFL draft will not be the same, as teams will draft remotely and there will be no spectacle from Las Vegas, including the draftees being brought to the stage via boat across the lake at The Bellagio (How cool would that have been).  The draft will still take place, but the NFL season is still in doubt as we just don’t know how long this will go on. 

I will close this post with some objective opinion regarding the situation that we are all in.  As of now, I truly believe there is no corner of the country or the world for that matter that this pandemic has not affected in one way or another.  People have lost their jobs, business are closing, those that still have a job have been forced to work from home, and most of all, our first responders, health workers, doctors, nurses, physician assistants, have ALL been placed in harms way, and the news is grim, because there have been reports that some of those that fall into this category have lost their lives while trying to save those that are infected.  I have a niece in Ohio that is a nurse and she is in the thick of it, while also dealing with her own severe health issues, placing her with those that are susceptible to this virus, yet she continues to work, placing the needs of others before her own safety.  I could go into an entire soliloquy on the lack of response by our federal government to this pandemic, but because the importance of getting through it is more important I will not criticize the administration, Congress, or the Cheese-It sitting in the White House no matter how much I feel the lack of response or the delay in response has caused people to lose their lives.  What I will say is that I hope all that read this are safe, are well, and are practicing safe “social distancing” in order to minimize the effects of COVID-19.  Take care my friends, be safe, be well, and please…  stay home…

Join me and four of my good friends on Sunday Night at 7pm Eastern as we bring you “The Sports Nerds” on FB Live – go to my Facebook Page and sign up for notifications to be reminded when we go live.  We discuss the world of sports, pulp culture and whatever else is on our minds.  We provide humor, sarcasm and off the rails discussion. 

Take care… and take care of each other….

Scott “The Sports Nerd”