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  • Caesar Cliffius

    My name is Cliff Eastham. I live in West Virginia with my wife Debbie, the loveliest lady in the world, and my youngest daughter, Holly who is equally as lovely as her mother.

    I enjoy writing about sports, and love a good healthy debate. My favorite teams are the Cincinnati Reds and the Washington Redskins.

    There are only a couple of sports that I don't write about, Hockey and Soccer specifically. My favorite sports are Baseball, Boxing, NFL, NCAA Basketball, MMA.

    Feel free to look around, and your comments are most welcome. Subscribe via email if you wish.

    It is decreed.....Caesar Cliffius
    this 8th day of December, in the Year of our Lord 2009.

I Should Have Been a Sports Writer

Since this is my first “rant,” let me begin by saying I am not qualified to be a writer. I lack the formal education that is generally associated with literary refinement.

In this modern day, people are more apt to pass on you if you do not have a college degree. That being said, I hope your dog dies.

Just kidding, of course—wanting to make sure you are still awake.

Let me start first by taking a shot at sports commentators and sportswriters. That is what I was called to do, but again my lack of education prevents me from being heard…or read, that is.

Commentators, especially from ESPN, continue to wear out the old, old, tired cliché “a buck fifty-nine”…meaning maybe an ERA of 1.59, one hundred and fifty-nine yards rushing, a pitiful batting average of .159. Are the rest of you tired of that, or is it just me? Just rambling.

Another sports idiom that makes me want to puke is “one for the ages.”  The phrase alone defines its exclusiveness.  Too many “ones” for the ages diminish the rest of them already set aside for the ages.

Jim Nantz is one who has beaten that horse to death.

I do like Chris Berman. If you aren’t sure which one he is, he is on ESPN and coined the phrase “…back, back, back, back…back”…and…”he…could…go….all……the…way.”

He always seems to bring something fresh to the table. Uses his own stuff, know what I mean? For example he is always throwing in something extra with people’s names, such as…”Bo ‘Diddly’ Jackson,” or “Ray ‘it’s been a hard day’s’ Knight.” Things like that make watching and listening more palatable.

Speaking of using one’s own stuff, allow me to add this. The only thing I don’t like about writing for “Bleacher Report” is the editing of it.  I don’t mind constructive criticism; I just don’t like the fact that anyone can edit your article any way they want.

I realize you can still revert back to the way it was, but if you don’t check in every few hours, someone has taken your article and “ran” with it.  Especially the title.  Don’t fool with a man’s title. Enough said.

The best football man is by far John Madden. He can tell you what the left offensive tackle did on the play before the replay man can roll it. I’ve never seen anything like it.

Al Michaels sucks. He is everyone’s favorite but I can’t deal with him. Fire him and bring in Pat Summerall.

Madden and Summerall, that was the best team ever. Before them it was Summerall and Tom Brookshire, but I digress.

What happened to split John and Pat was Fox’s nonsense. They weren’t going to re-sign Summerall so Madden decides to jump ship and go to ABC (he said he always wanted to do Monday nights). He would rather go to ABC than stay at Fox with some other hoser. Kudos to Madden!

Continuing with the story, Madden leaves and Fox signs Summerall, and sticks him on the last team Fox uses for football coverage. You know what I mean, the game nobody gives a crap about and the only time you see it is if all the other games ended early and they had to fill a hole. Thumbs down to Fox.

I can’t stand Joe Buck. His father was great, but he doesn’t deserve all the attention.

I can still hear his old man talking immediately following Kirk Gibson’s famous homerun, “I don’t believe what I just saw.”

I remember when Fox rolled Joe out with all the other kids. Joe Buck son of legend Jack. Thom Brenneman son of Hall-of-Fame announcer Marty Brenneman. So many sons there I half expected Little Ricky to come on the show.

Joe is showcased on nearly everything Fox puts their hands to. Football, baseball whatever. The man drives me nuts.

So you will know, the second best football guy is Dan Dierdorf, very knowledgeable man. Knows the game inside out.

For boxing I still like Barry Tomkins. HBO should never have let him leave.

Lampley is good but reminds me too much of a calculator, always telling you that Toney threw 84 more jabs than Holyfield and landed 39 more. How can you figure that crap up that fast. Oh yeah, that’s where I miss the college education.

Larry Merchant reminds me of a wise ol’ owl, always throwing in his two cents. He always gets kinda smart with boxers too, if they try to say hi to too many people. It is a little disrespectful if you ask me. I mean they don’t have sponsors so time is really a non-issue.

He kind of puts me in the mind of Jack Whitaker (not the Powerball winner). He was an “owl” type as well. Always throwing in his perspective on anything and everything.

I didn’t care too much for Curt Gowdy until he died. Now I miss him.

I don’t miss his old booth buddy, Al D’Regatis (never even knew how to pronounce it, let alone spell it). Just hearing his voice somehow takes me back to an Oakland-San Diego game. How depressing is that? Blanda setting up for a 38-yarder to tie the score. Please.

Bob Costas is great. He, not Michaels, is the king as far as this observer is concerned.

Vin Scully is very good but I can’t deal with a man who refuses to sweat in 95 degree weather. “Just getting ready to break the seal on this one at Candlestick Park.” I always liked that description for opening up a ball game.

Hockey sucks. Did you hear me? It sucks. Legalized thuggery is all it is. Fights every three minutes.

I like to watch a good fight, but give me boxing or Ultimate Fighting.

Also, I wouldn’t watch a soccer game live or on TV if you paid me real money. Boring!

And NASCAR, are you kidding me? Don’t get me started! When did driving a car become a sport? You can call it entertainment around me but don’t offend the word “sport.”

About like the Spelling Bee. I know, I know, ESPN shows the Spelling Bee so it must be sporting.

If a cat has kittens in the oven, you don’t call them biscuits.

I’m gonna sign off before my chest explodes and my heart falls to the floor and the Hell hounds dive into it like it is a chew-toy.

Cliff Eastham is a Featured Columnist at Bleacher Report where this article was first published.