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Wakeup Call: The perils of preseason

By Dejan Kovacevic | Trib Total Media

LONDON — Brief and to the Point …

>> The Friday column is about Christa Harmotto, the young lady from Hopewell playing a prominent role in the U.S. women’s volleyball run to the gold-medal match Saturday.

And they’re really good. No reason not to win.

Quick pic from their three-set sweep of South Korea yesterday …

>> Because the NFL has never had a terribly strong union, the players have never been successful at getting one of their most passionate wishes for a long time now: Fewer preseason games.

The Steelers found out the hard way last night. Down went David Johnson and Mike Adams to knee injuries, Jonathan Dwyer to a shoulder injury, and who knows what else will emerge after further review?

No sport demands more physically out of fewer games than football. Having four games on top of the 16 of the regular season equates to one-fifth of the total schedule. And that’s crazy. You can say the games don’t count, but the speed and ferocity can’t get slowed down much. There’s only one way to play the game, and it isn’t by trying to avoid injury.

Cut the preseason by one, even two games. Have more controlled scrimmages, in which the starters can be better protected from a couple of the flagrant hits seen last night.

But a month of preseason football makes no sense.

>> Twenty-seven plays on the Steelers’ first two offensive drives?

Will Todd Haley even want Mike Wallace to show up?

>> Caught only the highlights of the Pirates’ loss, as well as reading the box score and stuff. That’s how it’s gone over here.

Funny, but my GameCast broke in the ninth inning. Either that, or Clint Barmes really did get summoned to pinch-hit.

>> Did the players see management as having a less-than-all-in approach at the deadline?

Sure sounds like it from Rob Biertempfel’s slice of analysis this morning. Especially from that quote by Clint Hurdle. Strong stuff. But it should be noted, too, that at least some of the dissatisfaction at the deadline was with bumping Kevin Correia and with ditching Casey McGehee. Both were popular, at least before Correia asked to be traded.

Bottom line: All need to get over it.

>> The BBC rocks.

If you ever hope to watch an Olympics televised properly, intelligently and with just the right amount of enthusiasm, get one of those dishes to tune in the world’s greatest broadcasting service.

Yes, of course, events are shown live, even if they’re a really big deal and occur in non-prime time hours. If they’re that big a deal, they’ll just show them again later.

Duh.

There’s also a real mix of sports, occasionally delving into the ones you’d almost never see back home. There’s equestrian, dressage, fencing, judo, you name it.

The broadcasters are homers. They don’t apologize for it, even if it flies in the face of the BBC’s otherwise straight-as-a-line news coverage. But they aren’t obnoxious or taunting about it, as the Canadians were in 2010.

And for real, in-depth, actual global news … let’s just say I’ll miss this channel.

 
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