Mr. Perlman goes to Washington Tuesday, where he’ll represent the last line of defense against a college football playoff.
In a high-profile meeting with university presidents, he’ll attempt to persuade his peers that the game is headed down a perilous path. He’ll make statements about the rigors of a long season, about the virtue of the bowls, about the slippery slope to chaos. He’ll try to sell a compromise: a plus-one.
He will be wrong. The presidents will disagree. And Nebraska, on a banner day for college football, will stand on the wrong side of history.
Nebraska football has so much to be proud of. The program has always stood for strength and boldness. No nonsense, no excuses. At its best, Nebraska football confronts the opposition straight-ahead, without subtlety or surprise. It is a force of nature.
Tomorrow the image will be different. Tomorrow Nebraska will be perceived as weak — a program clinging to the past, rather than a program embracing the future. Tomorrow Nebraska will attempt to win via Hail Mary, not the fullback trap. Tomorrow Nebraska will represent desperation and fear.
Perlman is going to lose this fight. I hope he chooses his words carefully — and handles Nebraska’s good name with great care.
>> Forget warm-up acts. Forget building to the climax. The Olympic Swim Trials starts with arguably the biggest final of the week.
Ryan Lochte wants to be known as the best swimmer in the world? Winning tonight’s 400 individual medley — a signature event that consists of all four strokes — would be a heckuva way to make a statement. Lochte and Michael Phelps will compete in the first final of the week, shortly after 7 p.m.
Lochte won the prelims this morning by four seconds, 4:10-4:14. But he expects a big drop from Phelps tonight.
>> I realize when you have South Carolina, the two-time defending champs, on the ropes, the last thing you want to do is give them confidence. I realize you never want to show weakness, or concede defeat.
Andy Lopez is doing the right thing starting James Farris tonight. Farris hasn’t pitched in three weeks. But the only thing worse than throwing him out there for Game 2 of the championship series against Michael Roth is throwing him out there for Game 3.
It would’ve been a crushing psychological blow to Arizona to send ace Kurt Heyer to the mound tonight and lose to Roth. Lopez’s decision potentially gives South Carolina a chance to find its bats, yes. But it also assures that Arizona has the pitching edge in Game 3. Tonight the Wildcats can play loose, knowing Heyer is waiting in the wings.
>> NFL Films’ broadcasting boot camp. An inside look at how former players are trained to analyze.
>> A statistical look at how LeBron James overhauled his shot selection during this postseason. Fewer long-range jumpers is the key to the second half of his career.
>> Grantland throws a
party funeral for the BCS.
>> Why are college baseball catchers wearing wristbands? And how does it signal a revolution in the game? The Wall Street Journal examines.
>> The Kevin Youkilis deal is potentially the first of many big stars moving before the trade deadline. Cole Hamels and Zack Greinke top the list.
>> A few weeks ago, I promised that I’d regularly post old college football videos leading up to the season. And then, of course, I neglected it. But here’s a very good one with an unbelievable finish. The final 3 minutes of Oklahoma-Oklahoma State, 1988. Can Mike Gundy, Barry Sanders and Hart Lee Dykes pull off the upset? Lee Corso is color analyst.
>> This afternoon, sports radio wunderkind Josh Peterson and I will host a show from the CenturyLink Center AquaZone. It’s on 1180 AM. It’s 2-5 p.m. We’ll talk swimming, CWS and probably Perlman, too. Tune in.