SHOTS IN THE DARKE

Just when you thought it couldn’t get any worse for the good folks of New Orleans following the aftermath of Hurricane Ida, the roof of the Superdome catches on fire! Evidently work crews pressure washing the structure’s roof inadvertently started a blaze which was quickly contained with no impact to the integrity of the roof’s exterior skin.

The Saints, who have been practicing in the Dallas area since Ida, will hopefully be able to play their home opener October 3rd versus the Giants. You can almost hear Louis Armstrong rolling over in his grave as NOLA continues to be hexed!!

Golf’s Ryder Cup competition starts this Friday for three days as the best of the US take on the finest of European golfers. Last year’s match was postponed due to the pandemic, thus the biannual event is being contested this weekend at the Whistling Straits course in Wisconsin.

Collin Morikawa and Dustin Johnson head a contingent of 12 Americans while Jon Rahm and Rory McIlroy lead the boys from across the pond. Always an entertaining event, the US will try to recapture the trophy lost back in ‘18. It’s one of the few outings where you see the camaraderie of the world’s finest professional golfers come to the forefront. Even with no Phil and no Tiger, if you like golf, this will be “must see” TV!

Arcanum’s Trojans continue to roll along, moving to 5-0 in WOAC football play, averaging over 42 points per game. QB Bryce Schondelmyer has thrown for over 1,400 yards in pacing the high-powered offense while receivers Brennen Troutwine, Zade Shank, and Tyler Huber all are having outstanding seasons. Following this Friday’s game at home against 2-3 National Trail two huge hurdles loom on the road versus the 4-1 Tri-Village Patriots and the 5-0 Preble Shawnee Arrows. All three teams have realistic playoff hopes—talk about “must see” contests!

The Green Wave of GHS continue to be in every game, falling this past week to a strong Xenia team 21-14. At 1-4 the Wave are just a few plays a game away from being no worse than 4-1. West Carrollton comes to Harmon Field Friday night, a matchup that looks to favor the Green and White. After that the gauntlet of the MVL Miami Division looms with Piqua, Troy, Butler, and Tipp awaiting Bart Schmitz’ gridders.

Meanwhile, in the NFL, the Bengals and Browns are both 1-1 with the Stripes heading to Pittsburgh to take on the “Stillers” while the Orange and Brown host “Da Bears”. If Cincinnati can’t figure out how to protect QB Joe Burrow any better (giving up 9 sacks thus far) he is a candidate for a ride off the field on a cart again this year. Life was a lot simpler, not to mention safer, for Joe at LSU!!

Also down by the banks of the Ohio River, the Reds have lost 8 straight series, falling 3 games behind the Cardinals in the race for the second NL Wild Card spot. David Bell’s club just can’t seem to put good pitching and hitting together at the same time in struggling the past month. Evidently Jesse Winker’s absence with an oblique injury has had a bigger impact on the team than first thought.

Beware the Cardinals if they make the playoffs—they’re healthy again and with a veteran group of starting pitchers clicking they’ll be a huge pain to deal with in a one-game wild card showdown with either the Giants or Dodgers!

Can anyone explain the “targeting” calls in college football that seem to be so prevalent this season? I truly understand the need for safety but am puzzled by the inconsistency in implementing the rule, particularly with the use of replays.

Finally, I’m writing this column while sitting in a room at the Hanover Inn across the street from Dartmouth College in New Hampshire. The northernmost of the Ivy League schools, Dartmouth’s campus is a true gem and the college is one of the finest educational institutions in the country.

Kathy and I are taking a tour of several of the Ivies on our way to this Saturday’s Miami-Army game at West Point, enjoying the scenery and early fall weather while we hear that Darke County is getting pounded with heavy rains.

Until next time, stay healthy, active, and dry!!

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