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Tom Jones' Two Cents

Sports analysis, perspective and more.

Ten things I'd change about sports

Actually, I can think of way more than 10, but I'll just name 10 for now. Besides, most of the others involved very bad things happening to Curt Schilling and Michael Vick and are probably -- no, make that most definitely -- illegal.

Dunk 1.Dunks worth one point. I'm so sick of dunks dominating the highlights on SportsCenter. Make it worth one point and then maybe American kids will start learning the fundamentals again and we won't get our rears kicked in international competition anymore.

2. Play one World Series day game every year. Personally, I'd love to see seven World Series day games so I could watch reruns of Scrubs at midnight instead of the eighth and ninth innings of a game. The last time there was a World Series day game? Game 6 in 1987. Who wants World Series day games? Well, besides me, kids and old people and college students and those who work at night and those who have to get up early for work and every other human. That pretty much covers it.

3. The Flames return to Atlanta. Not the team, just the nickname. The Flames (with that burning A) should be Atlanta's nickname, not the Thrashers. Calgary can change its name to the Cowboys or Stampede. (While we're at it, the Utah Jazz needs to send its nickname back to New Orleans.)

4. The following songs need to be banned from sporting events: Gary Glitter's Johndenver_2Rock and Roll (Part 2), Queen's We Will Rock You, The Ramones' Blitzkrieg Bop, Todd Rundgren's Bang the Drum All Day, John Denver's Thank God I'm a Country  Boy, Lynyrd Skynyrd's Sweet Home Alabama, Village People's YMCA and Survivor's Eye of the Tiger. I was down with all of these songs the first 213,000 times I heard them.

5.Change NFL's overtime. In the NFL, 62 percent of the teams that get the ball first win. How about this: play a 10-minute overtime. Each team scores as much as it can and the game doesn't end until the 10 minutes are up. Either that or each team must have at least one possession.

Dogs_2 6. Ban sports involving animals. I'm not talking about Michael Vick's house. I'm   talking about sports that aren't felonies, like the Iditarod and, yes, even horse racing. Do dogs have a choice to run hundreds of miles through the snow? Do horses have the choice to run? To those who say those animals "love" to compete, we say this: They're animals! You have no idea what they are thinking or what they want because they can't speak. Because they're animals.

7. More baseball changes. No more interleague play. Mandatory doubleheaders on Memorial Day, July 4th and Labor Day. And either eliminate the DH or have both leagues use it.

8. Change the NCAA basketball tourney play-in game. Right now, you have two men's basketball teams playing for the 64th spot in the NCAA Tournament and the right to get drilled by a No. 1 seed like Florida or Kansas. Here's a thought: Every year you have four or five bubble teams that likely would be No. 12 seeds. Why not have a play-in game involving the true bubble teams? First, you would have a more deserving team getting into the NCAA Tournament, as well as a team that actually had a chance of winning a game or two.

9. A true competitor to ESPN. The World Wide Leader essentially has cornered the market on sports coverage and while it does a splendid job for the most part, it's never a good thing to have a monopoly. If another sports network could step up, sports fans would benefit and ESPN, ultimately, would be better for it.

Figureskating 10. Stop recognizing some competitions as 'sports.' To me, anything judged is not a sport. That means figure skating, diving, gynmastics and half those goofy X Games. Here's my rule of thumb: If you're watching an event and you don't know who's winning, then it might not be what I'd call a "sport." Or if you have a competition and a set of judges declares a winner and you can bring in another set of judges who might declare someone else the winner, then we don't have a whole lot of confidence in that result. (Photos: Associated Press.)

[Last modified: Monday, June 14, 2010 2:40pm]


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