Published Thursday, Mar 20 at 7:35 pm
Get off my blog! Updates from San Antonio
By / World-Herald Columnist

1. It’s great to be back in San Antonio. I covered eight events here, three Final Fours, two Big 12 championship games, two Alamo Bowls and one NCAA regional final (Iowa State in 1997).

2. The River Walk hasn’t changed much. A lot of the same restaurants and bars are where they were back in 1997 or 2003, and seeing all the Nebraska fans walk around, it definitely brought some flashbacks. Good nights. Bleary mornings.

3. But no more “Steers and Beers” steak house. I miss that place.

4. A lot of people, especially the newcomers, see the giant Alamodome sitting over there and wonder why this NCAA tournament isn’t there. Good question.

5. I asked an old friend, Tim Griffin, of the Express-News, about …

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Published Thursday, Mar 13 at 6:42 pm
Get off my blog! Hoops time for everybody
By / World-Herald Columnist

1. I remember the days when I would get in my car this week and steer it south on I-29 and it would find itself at the Hyatt Regency and Kemper Arena. To get to Indianapolis, Lee Barfknecht and I had to fly to Denver and then to Indy. How does that work?

2. It occurred to me when we were between flights in Denver that I hadn’t seen the Rocky Mountains in four years. One of those weird realignment moments.

3. I used to go to St. Louis every year, too. Now, Creighton’s in the Big East. And I have to choose.

4. This year, I chose Nebraska. I cover both NU and CU. So I wanted to cover both NU and CU.

5. …

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Published Thursday, Mar 6 at 5:26 pm
Get off my blog! Postpone spring football, we’ve got a big hoops weekend
By / World-Herald Columnist

1. If Nebrasketball keeps this up, they’re going to have to postpone spring football.

2. Seriously, though, the big event this weekend in Lincoln (there’s another big event in Omaha on Saturday night) is not the first day of football drills. It’s Nebraska-Wisconsin on Sunday night.

3. Is this the biggest game of the year? The biggest Husker Hoops game in 15 years? Yes. Until the next one.

4. That’s how the team has to look at this big game. When you get on the bubble, whatever you do is never enough. You can never be sure. I think even with a win, Nebraska still has to win a game in Indy. Even with a first-round bye, better win that Friday quarterfinal game. Leave no doubt.…

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Published Thursday, Feb 27 at 1:53 pm
Get Off My Blog! CU and NU hoops, plus questions for Bo
By / World-Herald Columnist

1. I know there are Husker fans today who think last night’s loss to Illinois ruined their NCAA hopes. Well, sorry to burst your bubble, but that’s not necessarily true.

2. Here’s a few things you should know about the NCAA Basketball Committee’s selection “rules” or guidelines:

>> The Big Ten does not get a quota of teams in the NCAA tourney. Teams on the bubble are considered as independent contractors.

>> Conference record is a factor, but not a deciding one. A winning record in the league is no guarantee. It helps. But if you don’t have a strong nonconference case, it can counterbalance.

>> The committee looks at injuries, timing and how teams come together. For instance, NU’s loss to Creighton looks bad, …

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Published Thursday, Feb 20 at 5:20 pm
Get Off My Blog! CU and NU hoops, plus Bo’s new boss
By / World-Herald Columnist

Two hours before Nebraska-Penn State and the Haymarket Area is already filling up.

1. I’m extremely grateful that Creighton has brought relevant basketball to our burg. It makes my job more fun. If Nebraska men’s basketball became relevant, that would double the fun. Call me a Jay-Sker. I want Nebraska and Creighton to make the NCAA tournament every year. Hasn’t happened since March, 1991. I was covering golf in Dallas then.

2. So what I’m saying is, I don’t care which fans are more into basketball or own what town. There’s enough for everyone.

3. I do know two things. One, Creighton isn’t going away after this season. That fan base is entrenched. A monster has been created and must be fed. Big East opponents …

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Published Thursday, Feb 13 at 2:26 pm
Get Off My Blog! NCAA rules, Husker hoops and a Fritos sandwich
By / World-Herald Columnist

Just kidding. You can stay. Feel free to stop by anytime. This post will be here every Thursday.

The gurus behind Omaha.com wanted me to move my Friday musings blog, also known as the Friday Tailgate, to Thursday. So here we go. That’s fine with me. I get a jump start on the weekend, get to comment on things that happened during the week, and, most of all, it’s not my golf day. Although today (52 degrees) would be tempting.

I had to come up with a new name for the blog. Here were some of the candidates that found the cutting room floor:

» Thursday Blog.
» If it’s Thursday, this must be Omaha.com
» Ten More And I’m Outta Here
» Animal House …

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Published Sunday, Feb 9 at 10:27 pm
Last Call: Sunday night edition
By / World-Herald Columnist

Tomorrow is my chat and First Downs And Second Guesses, but here’s three thoughts on a busy last 24 hours:

1. Marcus Smart was wrong. He’ll pay the price. So will his Oklahoma State teammates, now trying to escape the NCAA bubble without him the next three games. But what about the dope in the stands? Texas Tech fan Jeff Orr said he will not attend any Tech games the rest of the season. That’s good. But I wish Texas Tech had suspended him first. Orr is one of Tech’s big boosters. He sits right behind the basket. I’m sure he gives thousands of dollars. That doesn’t give you the right to act like a jerk. The price of a ticket doesn’t give you the right …

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Published Friday, Jan 31 at 2:43 pm
Tom’s Super Tailgate
By / World-Herald Columnist

Before we start our annual Super Bowl Preview, I’d like a round of applause for Molly Schuyler of Bellevue, Neb., who knocked down 363 wings in 30 minutes to win Wing Bowl XXII in Philadelphia. Wing-eaters of the world salute you.

No offense, Molly, but there’s someone you may not want to invite to your Super Bowl party. At least not if you expect to eat any wings.

Now, on with the countdown. An estimated $10 billion is expected to be bet on various forms of the Super Bowl by Sunday. If you’re contributing to the pool, please  use the following for entertainment purposes only:

1. How many times will Peyton Manning say “Omaha” during Sunday’s game? O/U: 27.5. I’m going to take the under …

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Published Friday, Jan 24 at 1:47 pm
Tom’s Friday Tailgate, Jan. 24
By / World-Herald Columnist

Musings before another busy sports weekend:

1. I would be more inclined to watch the Pro Bowl on Sunday if Jerry Rice and Deion Sanders suited up and played. And brought Joe Montana and Troy Aikman with them.

2. How about we bring back the College All-Stars vs. the Super Bowl champs in July? Is anyone old enough to remember that?

3. Don Banks of Sports Illustrated wonders if the NFL Draft should be held this weekend. I like that idea. Have a week’s worth of pro days and then hold the draft at the end of it.

4. Does anyone remember when the NFL held its draft in February?

5. Seriously, I’m not making this stuff up.

6. I have no feeling either …

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Published Wednesday, Jan 22 at 9:23 pm
Diary of a Skywriter: The Lumberjack, some city boys and a buck head
By / World-Herald Columnist

Yes, this bar is still open. Stop it.

I wrote a column about Ethan Wragge — aka “The Lumberjack” — for Thursday’s World-Herald. And had a lot of fun doing it.

A college basketball team that wins is fun. But so is a team that has a special chemistry, players with different personalities and from different backgrounds, banding together for one cause. That’s this Creighton team.

Of course, it reminded me of a story.

The year was 1988-89. The team was the Missouri Tigers.

They would finish second in the Big Eight, behind Oklahoma. They would end up 29-4, and bow out in the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament — after beating Creighton and Bob Harstad and Chad Gallagher in the first round in Dallas. …

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What is this place?

I always wanted to have my own sports bar. Let's face it, that's not going to happen. Too much work. So here's the next best thing: my own Omaha.com hangout, right on the corner of Sports St. and Opinion Ave. It's got a football theme, but you can come here to read about hoops, hockey, baseball, volleyball, even soccer (the bartender will act like he knows what he's talking about). Pull up a stool.

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