A few weeks ago I said the best thing Tiger Woods could do was make his return at the rowdy, raucous Phoenix Open. It would've shown a great deal of courage as golf's biggest player faced his fears head on in front of an unrelenting crowd. Of course, he didn't. Instead, all reports look as if he'll make his return at perhaps the blandest of all PGA events, The Masters.
What a shocker.
The Masters is widely known for it's calm, composed and respectful crowds, increased security, and a soundtrack that sounds increasingly like a Brita water commercial. You know what I'm talking about. When they do the swooping shots of flowers and it sounds like you're sitting in one of those wineries with fountains and giant chocolate swans. Ugh.
No, Tiger will come back when he has to face as little adversity as possible. Completely predictable. If you thought he was bland before, wait until you see him when he comes back. The most excitement we're going to get from him now is when he walks out of the press room when someone has the guts to ask him about his extramarital affairs. The PGA will give writers a list of questions they can't ask, trust me. But someone will still do it, and that poor soul will be escorted off the premises. Heck, if no one does it by August and Tiger gives a press conference in Akron for the World Golf Championship event there, maybe I'll do it.
Someone asked me if I had inside information when I wrote on Tuesday of last week that the Browns should look into getting Jake Delhomme at quarterback. I wish I could say yes, but no, the Salem News sports department isn't exactly tapped into the underbelly of the Browns organization. Basically, I just wanted to see the Browns pick him up because I always liked him at Carolina. But I do like what Cleveland is doing. If they can get someone good for Brady Quinn, I say ship him off. If not, open up the competition. Seneca Wallace is a proven backup. Quinn has experience starting under center, and Delhomme of course was a staple for the Panthers. I don't know if anyone would have an advantage going into that race, but the idea of having three guys who are relatively competent as opposed to, I don't know, say zero like Cleveland has had in the past, is quite refreshing. And the Browns just signed Ben Watson, so they've got a decent tight end to throw to again. I know it's early, and I don't want to jinx it, but I like what Holmgren is doing. He's making moves to try to make the Browns an instant contender.
Staying on the Browns, it was funny to see now ex-Cleveland quarterback Derek Anderson take the Tim Couch approach and cry about fans cheering when he got injured. Another millionaire crybaby. Good riddance to Anderson. And as far as making it with another team and coming into town and rolling the Browns, Derek, I'm sorry, but unless you get picked up as a third-stringer and the two guys in front of you break their legs on the field, you'll never start another game in the NFL. Not against the Browns. Not against anyone. You've just cemented your reputation as another flop. Now, like the Tim Couches, and Charlie Fryes, and Todd Philcoxes of the world, go wallow away in obscurity. You had one fluke season. Nice career, Derek. Maybe now you can go play in Canada. Or better yet, go back to Oregon State and be there quarterback coach. Although, that might be a tough sell considering you completed less than 50 percent of your passes when you played there for your career. Terrible.
If Salem ever puts up a statue of head football coach Mike Kopachy for what he did for the football team, they'll need to do one for Amy Scullion, too, for the career she had. Scullion is easily one of the best athletes in the history of not only Salem sports, but the entire Mahoning Valley as well as the state. This was clearly illustrated by her Gatorade Ohio Girls Player of the Year honor, as well as her Northeast Inland District Division II Co-Player of the Year award. I don't know if Salem really grasped what they were seeing when Scullion took the court for basketball or volleyball. Athletes like that in small communities don't come along very often. Hopefully Salem truly appreciated her accomplishments here. It's easy to get spoiled when you see an incredible player all the time, but just how good she was for the Lady Quakers might not truly sink in until down the line.
'til next time ...
E-mail B.J. Lisko at firstname.lastname@example.org