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Covering the Spread (COLUMN)

Opinions and insight into the wonderful world of sports

March 10, 2012
B.J. LISKO - Salem News Sports Editor ( , Salem News

Thank you Washington for helping to keep Cleveland from making another terrible draft decision. The Redskins gave up three first-round selections and a second-rounder to move into place to presumably select Heisman winner Robert Griffin III.

Now it looks like the Browns may go after Matt Flynn, Kevin Kolb, Jason Campbell or Kyle Orton in free agency, none of whom are exactly going to cause major waves off Lake Erie.

If the Browns are going to draft a quarterback they'd be better served to go after Texas A&M's Ryan Tannehill or take a chance on someone like Boise State's Kellen Moore in the later rounds. While Colt McCoy might not exactly be setting the world on fire himself, there are still far bigger areas of need before quarterback for Cleveland.


The PGA needs to ban the belly putter.

Forget that it gives players an anchor while they're on the green and basically obliterates the idea of the putting stroke ("It's called a putting stroke, not a putting anchor," said Sir Nick Faldo).

The belly putter makes otherwise respectable looking golfers appear as if they're sweeping spectators Sunday trash off the green.

Adam Scott's belly putter is longer than his driver, and it's so long he anchors it under his chin. He looks like he's performing surgery with an ugly stick every time he stands over a putt.

I myself would be a perfect candidate for one given my head moves more than a prize fighter every time I stand over a three-footer. Call me old fashioned but my golf game is inconsistent enough as it is. I don't need to look like a gangly doofus on top of it.

Tiger Woods thinks it should be banned, and I couldn't agree more. His reason of course is far more practical than my argument of how nerdy it looks.

While we're at it, they should ban visors for the same reason. If you're going to wear something on your head, a baseball cap, a fedora, even the Rory Sabbatini cowboy hat look would be more acceptable. But I digress. Golf has never exactly been a sport highly regarded for its fashion (see the 70s, John Daly, Payne Stewart). In the words of the immortal Happy Gilmore, "If I saw myself in clothes like that, I'd have to kick my own --."


Anyone who says they can't believe the Colts got rid of Peyton Manning needs to have their head evaluated. Manning is coming off at least three major surgeries of his neck and back in the past two years, and it's affecting his throwing motion. Would you pay someone a $28 million bonus and a $7.4 million salary that's got a giant health question mark hanging over his head? He had his neck fused. How can anyone be certain the first big hit he takes isn't going to send him right back to the hospital? Sure it's sad that he's gone after 14 seasons in a Colts uniform, but it's not like some other team isn't going to pay big bucks and take the chance on him. I know exactly why the Colts did what they did, and even though Indianapolis has been a terrible team without him, they have to start again somewhere.

"This is a simple game. You throw the ball. You hit the ball. You catch the ball. You got it?"

'til next time ...

E-mail B.J. Lisko at



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