* I try to be a St. Louis Rams fan. I really do. I read about the Rams and I get excited about the players they draft. I used to think Sam Bradford would grow to be an outstanding NFL quarterback. The Tavon Austin pick this year excited me. Jeff Fisher is a proven head coach. But none of it seems to matter. The Rams don’t matter. They’re terrible and, as happens almost every year, I’m dumping them and going over to the New Orleans Saints. Sorry, it’s what I do. Go Drew Brees and Jimmy Graham. Doesn’t hurt that I have them on my fantasy team, as well.
* Bradford is toast. The Rams now have to find another quarterback.
* Frank Gore looked really good Thursday night, didn’t he? That’s how running backs normally look when they’re untouched.
* Enough Rams bashing, I guess. Although I’d like to bash some more. Would that franchise be better off now moving out of St. Louis to Los Angeles? That used to be a sacrilegious idea for me but now I’m not sure I care. Maybe I do care. Maybe I’m just miffed about the Thursday night game. Maybe I’ll come to my senses.
* But maybe I won’t.
* On to other things. I suppose I could get behind the Kansas City Chiefs. I’m a big Alex Smith guy and I like Andy Reid. But there are too many Chiefs fans around here and some of them – not all of them – irritate me. Especially when the Chiefs are off to a good start. I do think the Chiefs have it in them to win 11 or 12 games this season. Part of that is because they’re a much-improved team with a stacked defense and part of it is because they are playing one of the weakest schedules known to man. It’s true, Chiefs fans. You know it.
* The baseball playoffs begin next week and that’s where my focus will be. Nothing against football. But I’m with the St. Louis Cardinals. I watch games in my basement with the lights out and a bottle of tequila in my right hand. That’s a joke, of course. The lights are on.
* No tequila. Not for a long, long time. There were certainly times in my younger days when tequila managed its way into my blood stream, but I run from the stuff now.
* I do get tense during the playoffs. But I try not to let it spill over, although there are times when I scream suddenly and it causes my wife to jump out of her chair. A few years back I threw the remote and it hit a piece of antique piece of furniture my wife values. So I stopped throwing the remote. The other night, I did toss my shoes straight down on the floor. But mostly I do fine. I’m not a raving lunatic when I watch the Cardinals play meaningful games. Not all the time, at least.
* I thought the ending to “Dexter” was OK. It wasn’t great and it wasn’t terrible. It provided some closure, but with the possibility that Michael C. Hall will reprise this character at some point. I’m going to miss that show.
* I think all future television awards shows should be hosted by Tina Fey and Amy Poehler with a special appearance by Will Ferrell and his three boys.
* The Eagles will be at Intrust Bank Arena in 10 days, 12 hours, 40 minutes and counting. Not that I’m counting.
* I’ve had a lot of fun writing about Wichita’s past in affiliated minor league baseball this week and might continue it into next week. Sometime a guy’s gotta do what a guy’s gotta do. I’ve always been curious about how many major league players have passed through Wichita’s minor leagues (more than 750) so I went about doing the research. And in doing that research, I’ve discovered some interesting stories. At least they’re interesting to me. I will be writing later today about Bob Johnson. I’ll bet you never heard of him.
* I love autumn weather. I love autumn in general. As a sports fan, this is as good as it gets with the NFL and college football kicking into high gear and the baseball playoffs approaching.
* I kick myself every year I don’t make it to Hutchinson for the State Fair. This is one of those years.
* As I’m working on this blog, I just picked up my iPhone for no apparent reason and started spinning through the apps. Do you do that? It makes me angry how tied to my phone I have become. When I was a kid, I never hung around the phone on the wall of our house waiting for it to do something. I went outside and played. I never gave the phone a thought, really. But now I catch myself looking down at it (it just happened again). And heaven forbid I fail to keep it adequately charged. We’re all slaves to our phones (admit it) and that’s a terrible thing.
* Why do we call it a phone, anyway? I hardly ever get calls. Someone, please call me today just for the heck of it. You have my number.
* I got to spend some time Thursday with Bill Kentling, the former general manager of the Wichita Wings (in their heyday) and someone who learned the art of salesmanship and marketing from Hap Dumont, the founder of the National Baseball Congress. Kentling, who a sales manager at a Topeka classic country music radio station, also worked at the Wichita Eagle back in the day, even before I started there in 1974. It was enjoyable, as always, to reminisce and listen to his stories.
* I was in Lawrence on Wednesday for KU basketball media day. The Jayhawks are loaded and Bill Self knows it. Every time he was asked about an individual player, he gushed. And Self isn’t really a gusher. But this recruiting class along with the quality of some of the returning players is 100 percent gush-able. It will be interesting to see how the Jayhawks weave through one of the toughest non-conference schedules in the country and maybe the most difficult Kansas has ever played.
* Freshman Andrew Wiggins, of course, drew most of the media attention. I listened in as he was asked questions, but not for long. That’s a quiet kid. But I can’t wait to see him play.
* Thanks for reading. Check the blog later today for the Bob Johnson story. Have a great weekend. No KU or K-State football this weekend, so I’m headed down to the Chili Fest on Saturday, when the high temperature is expected to barely broach 70. That’s some good chili weather.