MURPHY’S LAW: Valentine’s Nightmare, Wrestling Punishment, Barnes’ New Look

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One of our boys now has a girlfriend, or something close to it. He’s dealing with every teenage boy’s nightmare: Valentine’s Day gift shopping. Even as I get older, I’m not sure I get it right, but I do know the love is in the trying. He was considering several gifts. I better not reveal what he decided here. I’ll just put a picture in a couple days.

Colin is 8, so he’s just worried about making a cool collecting box for his valentine cards at school. I’d say he succeeded:


It may not look romantic, and you could lose a finger dropping a card in the box, but it’s awesome. Other side is sweeter:


Colin loves Valentine’s Day. Me? I think I already messed up. I’ll have to hold that story for Thursday…

Took the kids to Iowa City Saturday. We met some friends over there. Most of us went to the Hawkeye basketball game. Some stayed behind at the pool. Those who didn’t go to the game may get jealous of this picture. It shows just how close our seats were… to the bathrooms.


The hotel pool area was full of people with the same idea: laughs with friends while drinking a few beers as your kids absolutely exhaust themselves, or need medical attention from chlorine overexposure, whichever comes first…

Andy and Hacksaw Jim Duggan mixed it up on our radio show Friday. It was real fake conflict. You can tell in this photo:


Really, Subway? Febru-Any. That’s the campaign? Go back to the board room…

I don’t think the individual West Marshall wrestlers should be suspended from the traditional state tourney for the disrespectful photograph of bad sportsmanship they posed and posted after beating Don Bosco. I do think a strong case can be made that the team should sit out the state duals. Posed as a team. Punished as a team.

Regardless, responsibility must be accepted and consequences known. It’s a public school. Cleaning up Don Bosco’s campus, or mopping up the wrestling room, or volunteering time at a local charity, are ideas worth considering. A public apology is also a must. Perhaps posting that on Facebook makes sense. It would look better than the last post.

I don’t think the incident is the end of the world, but I do believe if it goes unchecked, nothing is really learned. Many of you reminded me of this fact, plus I thought again about something that happened to me a long time ago.

I’ve mentioned before that the most valuable lesson of my young life was from the local Little League World Series. I struck out and threw my bat down in game 1. The coach, despite my begging, benched me for the next game.  It would have been easy for him to lecture me, make me run, and still play me. After all, I was a starter, and I was really sorry. (My parents, it should be noted, 100% backed the coach. They didn’t make excuses for me, or put my playing as first priority.)

However, had he done that, I wouldn’t have learned the same. I never threw another bat, or disrespected another umpire. The next year, I won the sportsmanship trophy. It remains my proudest award. When I heard years ago that Coach way dying, I made sure he knew his one small act of discipline changed my life for the better…

Rivals ranks Urbandale’s Allen Lazard the #1 receiver in America for the class of 2014. Lazard gave a verbal commitment to Iowa State. That could make him ISU’s highest profile recruit in decades, if not ever. Even though Lazard tells the Des Moines Register his commitment remains firm, Paul Rhoads knows he needs to keep recruiting Lazard. Other coaches have already tried to turn Lazard, and the new ranking will bring even more attention from big time programs. The recruiting won’t end until Lazard signs, but I think he will make it to Ames in 2014. His brother is there, and his father played in the 90’s. Family matters…

I don’t hate the Warriors T-shirt jersey the way many do. I can’t see it replacing the tank, though men with hairy shoulders might like it. Harrison Barnes and the Warriors will wear it three times this season. What do you think?