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Most jobs are harder than they look. (Even this one.) I was reminded of that as my friend Chris did some carpentry around the house. Chris knocked down a wall and turned two tiny closets into one large walk-in. He made it look easy. I’m sure to Chris, it is, but I’m the guy who tries to assemble an entertainment center, and doesn’t realize until the end that I have a board upside down and backwards. Point being, when people are good at what they do, they make it look effortless, even though it’s not.

With this in mind, I tried to listen with an open mind as Wayne Morgan provided color commentary for the Big Ten Network (an Iowa game, no less). Morgan never said much of anything interesting in his years of news conferences and coaches shows at Iowa State, but you never know. Dan Marino: boring interview as a player, good commentator. Joe Montana: interesting player, dull commentator.

Morgan fell into the trap many analysts do, especially beginners, pointing out the obvious. (Yes, we know, a team down ten with a minute to go needs to score.) I say this with full knowledge that what John Walters and Gary Dolphin do is harder than most people realize. I worked play-by-play a little here at channel 13, and a lot at my former station. I wanted to be good, studied hard, and on a good night I was okay, but I knew I’d never excel. I don’t have the right skills. So I’m always surprised how many people think it’s easy. It’s not, and it’s nothing like doing it in your driveway.

I’ll give Morgan another chance, but you’ll learn much more listening to Todd Lickliter or Greg McDermott’s post-game shows. These guys know basketball. Now if they could just get better players…

Some scattershots:

-“Frank TV” was a huge letdown. The guy can do spot-on impressions, but the show is not funny.

-I can’t get enough of watching the Patriots. That’s the best NFL team I’ve ever seen.

-Bill Belichick doesn’t care that you think he’s a jerk. In fact, he just tried to score again.

-Craig Brackins is fun to watch. If he learns to rebound and play defense, he’s a potential All-American.

-It’s fun watching the Hawkeye basketball team play like Norman Dale’s Hoosiers. There’s not much Big Ten talent on that team, but they’ll win some games on smarts and effort.

-Nick Saban not only lies, he’s insensitive. There’s no excuse for comparing Alabama’s embarrassing loss to what America went through on 9-11. None.

-Next time a Cyclone football player makes the cover of Sports Illustrated, Gene Chizik hopes it’s not being burned by a Kansas Jayhawk. Nice picture though, and nice for KU— a program “I-State” should emulate.

-Can you believe the snow already hit us hard?! It did get me out of Disney’s High School Musical on Ice though.

-Speaking of Disney, they’re making the boats bigger on the Small World ride because we’re getting so fat, the boats are scraping bottom. Unbelievable. (Pointless note: I worked in the restaurant above Small World in high school. Yes, the song drove us crazy.)

-Is there a more foolish myth than the media driving Lute Olson out of Iowa? Lute left for warmer weather and a better shot at winning a national championship, among other reasons. There is no gentler media anywhere than Iowa.

-Congrats Oak Leafs.

-Don Cheadle is amazing in the movie Talk to Me. It’s rated R for many reasons, but if you’re looking for a mostly true story about the guy who changed, if not started, talk radio, this movie is worth your time.

-Happy Thanksgiving!

Keith

18 comments

  • Anonymous

    That’s one of the perks of having Mediacom, Melinda. They actually care about putting local events on TV for subscribers to watch, unlike your nationwide satellite company that only cares about the large TV markets.Pity you went with the dish. I can’t believe I’m defending Mediacom! Ah well. You can surely round up some friends and hit up a sports bar to watch the game.

  • Melinda

    It seemed like last year the Fox Sports Midwest channel was showing some local teams, but I haven’t noticed them on as much this year. I’ll listen to the game on the radio before I go back to Mediacom. They do have a good radio broadcasting team.

  • Anonymous

    Funny how we (Cyclone Fans) can get Big 10 network (Iowa Games)with our dish, but we can’t see any ISU games. What a deal! And by the way, we can’t get Mediacom even if we wanted to where we live.

  • Melinda

    Hey, I got the NFL network…trade ya the Packers/Cowboys game for a UNI playoff game??? Oh, wait, I want to see the Packers/Cowboys game too. You just can’t win anymore…

  • Melinda

    Wow, what a game UNI had last night. I did get to watch it, thanks to a friend that hasn’t switched to a dish yet. I may have turned them into Panther fans after that game. (Or at least closet Panther fans…they normally cheer for ISU.) 🙂

  • Anonymous

    I miss the Andy Fales runors so here’s mine.Andy was last seen running through downtown Cedar Falls wearing a panther suit and singing the UNI fight song. It is becoming increasingly obvious that Andy is coming back to Des Moines to be the UNI spokesperson.Back to you Keith!

  • Anonymous

    you the man keith, if you cant do it. Andy probably can. woot for andy fales coming back. whats on your mind keith?

  • Anonymous

    Does anyone know if any bowl committee has called to invite the Cyclones yet? Oh yeah, they aren’t even bowl eligible, I forgot.

  • Melinda

    Sad thing is UNI is in their playoffs, but yet so far they’re only being shown on ESPN Gameplan??? Come on, you can’t tell me that a local network can’t pick up the game on Saturday. They’ve been the most exciting team to watch all season long, but yet we’ve had to watch Iowa and ISU suck most of the time. I’m also an Iowa fan, but please, why can’t they show the better team???

  • Anonymous

    When will Iowa be invited to the “Let’s Go Smoke A” Bowl? Oh, wait they’ll probably do that anyway.-Iowa Fan that Likes to Bash his Own Team

  • Anonymous

    Fales is back to take Ferentz job at Iowa because Ferentz is going to Michigan and Nebraska.-Eternally Hungry Blogger

  • Anonymous

    I agree Keith, Wayne Morgan was AWFUL. He’d repeat everything the play-by-play guy said. Larry Morgan: “Johnson with a nice drive to the basket for two!”Wayne Morgan: “Johnson with a nice drive to the basket.”It was so bad, the only reason to keep watching is to see how bad it would get. Like watching a car wreck. He never gave any insight on “This is what they need to do” or “As a coach, you’re thinking this.”

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