Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Writers

Martin Fennelly, Times sports columnist

Martin Fennelly, Times sports columnist

Martin Fennelly is a sports columnist for the Tampa Bay Times. He was born in New York City, raised on Long Island and was sitting in the bleachers at Yankee Stadium, minding his own business, when Reggie Jackson hit three home runs in one night to beat the Dodgers in the 1977 World Series. Prior to joining the Times, he worked as a columnist for the Tampa Tribune, St. Louis Sun and Sarasota Herald-Tribune. Martin graduated from the University of Albany, where he studied history, and attended the University of Missouri Graduate School of Journalism. He lives in Lutz with his wife, Siobhan, their children, Conor and Norah, and, at present, five cats.



Leigh Dittman, an ambassador for the Shriners Hospital in Tampa, is with (from left) West team members Matt Korte from the University of Alberta, Joel Lanning of Iowa State and Jacob Alsadek of Arizona. (Courtesy of the Dittman family)

Fennelly: Real East-West Shrine all-stars not on the gridiron

TAMPA — The East-West Shrine Game is back. And we're better for it.The oldest college all-star game, Saturday at Tropicana Field, will be filled with kids who dream of one day playing in the NFL, of making the kind of play that...
Published: 01/15/18
Tampa Bay Lightning right wing Nikita Kucherov, right, of Russia, is congratulated by center Steven Stamkos after scoring against the Los Angeles Kings during the first period of an NHL hockey game, Thursday, Nov. 9, 2017, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Michael Owen Baker) LAS103

Fennelly: No all-stars are more deserving than the Lightningís Fab Four

TAMPA ó The host with the most.The NHL All-Star Game is headed our way, and so is the Fab Four."Fab Four, eh," Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman said, smiling.You heard me.It has been a Lightning season thus far, so it...
Published: 01/11/18
Updated: 01/12/18
Lightning center Steven Stamkos, left, celebrates a goal against the Detroit Red Wings with Nikita Kucherov in November at Amalie Arena in Tampa. [AP Photo/Paul Sancya, File]

Fennelly: No all-stars are more deserving than the Lightningís Fab Four

our, eh," Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman said, smiling.You heard me.It has been a Lightning season thus far, so it makes absolute sense that the best team in hockey gets to dominate the show, with four selections on the Atlantic...
Published: 01/11/18
In this Tuesday, Dec. 19, 2017 file photo, Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy makes a save against the Vegas Golden Knights during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Las Vegas.  Winger Nikita Kucherov, defenseman Victor Hedman and Andrei Vasilevskiy will join Lightning captain Steven Stamkos at NHL All-Star Weekend in Tampa, Florida. With four players on the Atlantic Division team, host and league-leading Tampa Bay has the most representatives for the skills competition and 3-on-3 tournament Jan. 27-28 at Amalie Arena. (AP Photo/John Locher, File) NY179

Fennelly: The Lightningís Stanley Cup hopes are riding on this

TAMPA ó The Lightning had a remarkable first half of the season. Nikita Kucherov is poised to lead the league in scoring and win league MVP. Steven Stamkos is all the way back from injury. Victor Hedman is on his game. Brayden Point has established...
Published: 01/10/18
Quarterback Marcus Mariota #8 of the Tennessee Titans high-fives fans after the Titans defeated the Kansas City Chiefs 22-21 to win the AFC Wild Card playoff game at Arrowhead Stadium on January 6, 2018 in Kansas City, Missouri.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

Jameis Winston vs. Marcus Mariota: Advantage Mariota

If they held a draft today for NFL playoff quarterbacks, Iím trading down and taking Marcus Mariota.Sorry, Jameis.Must be present to collect prize.Last Saturday, Mariota threw a pass that he caught himself to make a touchdown.
Published: 01/08/18
In this Dec. 7, 2017, file photo, Nick Saban, of Alabama, left, and Kirby Smart, right, of Georgia, pose together before the College Football Awards show at the College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta. Nick Saban vs. Kirby Smart is only the latest in a line of high-stakes coaching matchups between mentors and mentees over the history of college football. (AP Photo/John Amis, File)

Fennelly: SEC bias? Haters need to zip it

TAMPA ó Who ordered the grits with their football championship?We interrupt Paul Finebaum, Booger McFarland and this SEC Network roundtable discussion to remind you that Alabama and Georgia will play for the national title Monday night in...
Published: 01/06/18
Jameis Winston greets teammates at the door to the locker room before a game against the Saints last month at Raymond James Stadium. [LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times]

Fennelly: Somehow, Bucs defy drought-ending trend

The NFL playoffs begin today. For all the problems the league has, the playoffs are not one of them. Iíll take the NFL playoffs over the college football playoffs. Itís the best football going.You know how I know itís the best football...
Published: 01/05/18
USF head coach Jose Fernandez, left, and members of his team watch the action in the final minutes of their 75-65  overtime loss to Connecticut at Storrs, Conn., Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2004. C (AP Photo/Bob Child)

Fennelly: 24th time the charm for USF women vs. UConn?

TAMPA — USF women's basketball coach Jose Fernandez has been to Pamplona, Spain, on vacation. Probably recruited some, too. Fernandez has been part of the big show in Pamplona — though not completely."Some of us...
Published: 01/05/18

A Bucs life: The pain of these NFL Playoffs

The NFL playoffs begin Sunday. For all the problems the league has, the playoffs are not one of them. Iíll take the NFL playoffs over the college football playoffs. Itís the best football going.You know how I know itís the best football...
Published: 01/05/18
OCTAVIO JONES   |   Times USF head coach Brian Gregory runs offensive drills during practice at the USF Sun Dome in Tampa, Florida on Monday, November 6, 2017.

The toughest job in town

Nobody goes into the Sun Dome and beats East Carolina.The man with the toughest sports job in Tampa Bay had just watched his team lose to possibly the one team it can beat in its conference. The song remains the same for USF men's basketball,...
Published: 01/04/18