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My Take with Matt Yogus - Stories abound in sports world
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Matt Yogus

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Listen to Matt Yogus read his take on sports this week.


Random thoughts from the wide world of sports collected while watching Georgia Southern sweep three from Furman over the weekend.

— While I’m on the topic of that series, Eric Phillips went 9-for-12, scored six times, drove in five runs and walked four times. He reached base 13 times in 16 tries over the weekend. And he didn’t even win Southern Conference Player of the Week.

Just imagine what the stat line would have looked like had the NCAA not switched to those new bats that were supposed to make hitting hard.

—The wise SoCon did, however, award Chris Beck the Pitcher of the Week honor.

He got things started in that mid-week win over No. 1 Florida that you might have heard about, and locked down Furman to the tune of seven innings and nine strikeouts on Friday.

— Over in Big-Boy-Football Land, the NFL has locked down.

And the politicking has already begun. Expect over the coming days and weeks to see players in the media reaching out to you, the fan, to present a united front against those greedy, soulless owners.

They’re going to try to tell you, the fans responsible for the $9 billion a year that everybody is fighting over, that it’s all the big, bad owners’ fault. They’ll say the word "we" a lot, and you’ll be lumped in when they say it. The vocal ones want to turn the players, the fans, the media and the courts against the owners, because playing football is hard and not that many people can do it. They take a beating week-in and week-out purely for your entertainment and enjoyment, and this whole mess has nothing to do with their mansions, Rolexes, Escalades and indoor swimming pools.

They’ll have you believe that they didn’t know what they were signing up for when they decided to make the ultimate sacrifice of becoming a pro football player, and that they’re not being fairly compensated.

They’re just trying to work out a fair deal for you, the fan. It’s all about you.

No. No, no, no.

Try telling that that to any blue-collar worker who tried to get an autograph for his kid and got ignored by a superstar. I hope the fans are smarter than that. The fans are the only real losers in this situation.

The goal of everyone involved — the owners and the players — should be to acknowledge the fact that there’s plenty of money to go around, and that the fans deserve to have the game they love. Just come to an agreement already. All of you.

— Up I-75 in Atlanta, Georgia Tech fans get it.

I’m not saying they’re right — I didn’t follow the Yellow Jackets or the 11-year career of Paul Hewitt enough to know whether or not he was best basketball coach for the job — but Tech fans saw the steady decline of the program since the 2004 NCAA championship appearance and spoke with their silence, quietly spending their money elsewhere. They just stopped showing up, and their coach was shown the door.

Just goes to show that in this day and age, money talks, and it’s the only way to get folks to listen.

Right or wrong, the fans wanted a change, and they got it. Pro football fans could learn something. Every time you buy tickets and merchandise, you’re casting you’re vote and letting the program know that you’re happy with what’s going on.

— The last hope for SoCon glory in basketball this season is Wofford, and the Terriers won the 14-seed lottery. They’ll face No. 3 seed Brigham Young, which recently kicked star forward Brandon Davies off the team for violating BYU’s honor code.

First off, props to the university for extending its code to revenue-producing student-athletes. Ohio State’s Jim Tressel could learn a few things.

But for No. 14 seed Wofford, it couldn’t have worked out better. Davies was a big reason why BYU had a good enough resume to become a No. 3 seed, and he won’t be around to help make a run.

Sure, the Cougars still have the nation’s leading scorer in Jimmer Fredette, a guard who drops 28.5 points per game, but there’s a reason Wofford coach Mike Young is excited about the matchup and BYU’s Dave Rose isn’t.

Come Thursday in the Big Dance, the Cougars will probably have enough to send the Terriers packing, but Wofford couldn’t have asked for a more golden opportunity.


Matt Yogus can be reached at (912) 489-9408.