Who am I?

I'm from Houston, a graduate of the University of Texas, a fan of the Houston Astros and Houston Texans. But this blog will be about the "greater sports", whatever that means.

Follow me on Twitter: @lhd_on_sports

Labels

LHD_PotW (495) MLB (154) NFL (143) NCAA (114) NFL Playoffs (64) NBA (61) NHL (52)

Monday, September 20, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 9/19/2021


The first two weeks of the NFL has provided a number of tight games, upsets, surprises and top performances.  And upsets.  Two of the biggest wins so far have been executed by the Las Vegas Raiders led by our Sportsman of the Week Derek Carr.  Shuffled a tough schedule to start, hosting the formidable Baltimore Ravens on Monday Night Football, then travelling to menacing Pittsburgh for a noon start (over three time zones) to face the Steelers.  2-0.  After a thrilling overtime on Monday Night, including 10 points in the last 4 minutes, including a last minute FG drive for the tie, Carr led his team to a 33-27 victory essentially twice as a TD was overturned the Raiders survived a Ravens possession to win on a 31 yard TD pass.  Head to Sunday in Pittsburgh in which Carr led a workmanlike effort to down the Steelers with ease 26-17.  Two of their biggest contenders behind them, the Raiders schedule lightens up.  Carr has clocked a 66.7% completion rate, 817 yards (that's over 400 per game) and 4 TD.  The Raiders have vaulted themselves into contention in the AFC, two showdowns with the Kansas City Chiefs loom but Derek Carr is the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week! 


This is Derek Carr's second Sportsman of the Week honor and at eight years, believed to be the longest duration between as he was the 91st Sportsman of the Week in 2013!

Monday, September 13, 2021

Sportswoman of the Week Ending 9/12/2021


An exciting and unpredictable finish punctuated the 2021 United States Open (of Tennis) and the biggest surprise was on the ladies side of the bracket.  Youth was served as teenagers Leylah Fernandez (Canada) faced off against Great Britain's Emma Raducanu in what turned out to be a straight set victory for the latter. Raducanu became the first qualifier to make the Finals of the Open and didn't drop a set throughout the two week tournament.  She never even needed a tiebreak.  Fernandez did some heavy lifting in ousting favorites such as Naomi Osaka and Angelique Kerber and actually beat 3 of the Top 5 seeds.  But Raducanu was just too amazingly hot to stop.  Raducanu may be on the precipice of a stalwart career and is the Longhorndave Sportswoman of the Week!

Monday, September 6, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 9/5/2021


In the biggest game of the college football kickoff weekend, the biggest win was by the Georgia Bulldogs.  Led by their defense, they defeated the defending ACC Champions 10-3 in an effort that felt like the Tigers couldn't score if they had 40 quarters instead of four.  While the Bulldogs offense struggled, their defense struck for the only touchdown of the game in a big win over the Clemson Tigers 10-3.  Senior Chris Smith made a quick break on a ball and did the rest with his legs and blocks in scoring a classic "Pick-6" which was the difference in the game.  While certainly his effort wasn't the only part of the defensive domination, he represents the Dawgs in their big win and made a huge statement in being SEC East Favorites.  Chris Smith is the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, August 30, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 8/29/2021


Football and tennis are kicking up for the fall, but baseball is still the National Pastime of summer.  And one of the greats of the game in a small market is getting the attention he deserves as one of the greatest at this position.  Not just this year.  But of all time.  Salvador Perez of the Kansas City Royals is rewriting the record books for a catcher right in front of our eyes.  We should open them and see.  He had as good a week as anyone in baseball this year.  Seven games, with home runs in six of them, 14 RBI, only 5 K, with 5 BB, and 10 hits in 28 AB.  Oh, and he led his young Royals team to a 4-3 record on the road against 2 playoff contenders over .500.  All adds up to a strong Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, August 23, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 8/22/2021


There may not be a more appropriate 500th Sportsman of the Week than to look to a man who hit his 500th Home Run this week.  You can't make this up.  Miguel Cabrera etched his name next to baseball elite when he clobbered his milestone home run.  He was a hero in 2003 when he emerged as a post season phenom in securing a world Series for the Florida Marlins, and now he puts another stamp on his Cooperstown passport in getting 500 home runs.  Cabrera clobbered number 500 against Toronto Blue Jays hurler Steven Matz in a game in which the Tigers won in a resurgent season as they rebuild.  Next up. 3000 hits hoping to become the (Aaron, Mays, Palmeiro, Murray, Rodriguez, Pujols, and two of those have some PED issues.)

Monday, August 16, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 8/15/2021


It's been a while since we've featured a No Hitter in the Blog, but here we are again.  This time the rub is, there was no way to expect it.  The Arizona Diamondbacks are the worst team in baseball.  They have been in rebuild mode for a few years and this second half is just the dog days of summer.  So all the better to have something to reward their patient fans.  And Tyler Gilbert did just that.  In his first career start, he tossed a no hitter against playoff contending San Diego Padres.  It was the first pitcher to throw a no hitter in his first career start since 1953.  And with eight no hitters, the season with the most no hitters since 1900.  Without overpowering stuff, walking two, but no hits.  What a day for the Diamondbacks and for Gilbert and what a great day for Baseball.  Tyler Gilbert is the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!

Wednesday, August 11, 2021

Sportswoman of the Week Ending 8/8/2021


What a fortnight in Tokyo as the world came together despite a global pandemic to celebrate the 2020 Olympics.  In 2021.  It's hard to nail down a single star, but one great athlete achieved something no American had done before.  Win 11 Olympic Medals in Track and Field.  Veteran Track superstar Allyson Felix, at her fifth Olympic games dating back to her 18 year-old debut in Athens in 2004 when she won a silver medal in the 200.  Felix snatched a bronze in the 400m individual, and gold in the 400m relay to leave Tokyo as the most decorated track athlete in American history.  The 400m relay represented a passing of the torch (no pun intended) as the anchor leg was ran by rising superstar Athing Mu, a 19 year-old who (do the math) was a two year old baby when Felix debuted in Athens.  Felix will go down as one of the greatest track athletes in what has been one of the greatest eras of women's track, and is a worthy Longhorndave Sportswoman of the Week!

Tuesday, August 3, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 8/1/2021


The first week of the Olympics is usually defined by swimming greatness, and the United States is historically a big player.  The Tokyo 2021 (err 2020) Olympics did not disappoint.  Caeleb Dressel led the American charge with a five Gold Medals across his myriad of events.  Exceeded in one Games only by American swimming legends Mark Spitz and Michael Phelps.  The best freestyle swimmer in the World, he won the 50m and 100m, while also collecting a Gold on the 4x100 freestyle relay.  Butterfly his next best stroke, winning the 100m and contributing to the epic medley relay Gold in which the United States has never lost but is facing larger and larger challenges.  Dressel won every event he entered besides the 4x100 mixed medley, a new event in which the United States finished a disappointing fifth.  In any event, Dressel has etched his name in United States Olympic history and is a worthy Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, July 26, 2021

Sportswoman of the Week Ending 7/25/2021


Sports fans around the world has waited in anticipation for the quadrennial Summer Olympic Games and in these times, had to wait an extra year.  The Tokyo 2020 Olympics kicked off this weekend a year late without fans, but with the competition as fierce as ever.  One of the early surprises in the Games was the emergence of a young, American woman who won the first ever female gold medal for the United States in Taekwando.  Anastasija Zolotic of Colorado Springs, CO, bolted through the competition, beating the World #2 in the semifinals and World #4 in the final match.  The 18 year old Zolotic has surged to the top in winning junior competitions three years ago, and won a championship at the Pam Am Games in 2020.  Zolotic is probably a name you didn't know a week ago, but represented the United States well and is the Sportswoman of the Week!

Sunday, July 18, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 7/18/2021


What a three weeks on the roads and mountains of France, as cycling's greatest event unfolded over an amazing backdrop.  A year after being postponed until fall, the Tour de France went back to its original schedule and put some normalcy back to cycling.  But the more things change, the more they stay the same.  2020 surprise winner (and prior Sportsman of the Week) left a lot less drama in this years tour, dominating from the first week through the parade on the Champs-Elysees in Paris to win back-to-back tours.  Slovenian Tadej Pogacar was a man among boys despite only being 22 years old.  A rare talent of unmatched climbing skills with ability to time trial and burst on a sprint stage with steel nerves makes it seem as if he may not lose for several years.  Several.  He won Stage 5 (time trial), took the Maillot Jaune on Stage 8, then won Stages 17 and 18 in the Pyrenees to make it easy.  There was no other rival.  He was a champion this year and will be a champion in years to come.  Our Sportsman of the Week!

Tuesday, July 13, 2021

Sportswoman of the Week Ending 7/11/2021


What a fortnight in England for the number one seed in a dominant effort to take home one of Tennis's most prestigious trophies.  Ashleigh Barty stormed through her seven matches and three seeds to win her second major, but first Championship of the All England Club also known as Wimbledon.  Barty stumbled out of the game needing a full three sets to win her opener, then didn't drop a set until the finals.  She jumped out to an early lead against 8 seed Karolina Pliskova then didn't look back, taking the first and third sets 6-3.  The Australian Ash notched her second Grand Slam tournament adding to her 2019 French Open victory.  I'm going on a limb to say it won't be her last, and she is a dominant Longhorndave Sportswoman of the Week! 

Monday, July 5, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 7/4/2021


The NBA Finals are on tap to start this week, and two surprise teams punched their ticket to the finals.  One team did so without their biggest star in the final, clinching Eastern Conference Final games.  The Milwaukee Bucks lost two-time NBA Most Valuable Player Giannis Antetokounmpo to a knee injury in Game 4 and needed someone to step up.  That someone arrived in the person of Khris Middleton, our Sportsman of the Week. Middleton put the Bucks on his back to lead them past the resurgent Atlanta Hawks (who were buffered by the return of their star Trae Young in Game 6).  Over the Games 5 and 6 which punched the Bucks to their first finals since 1974, Middleton 58 points and 17 rebounds in the double digit victories.  Playing team ball, he also contributed with 15 assists when the Hawks tried to shut him down.  It's unclear whether Antetokounmpo will return to help the Bucks in the Finals, so it may be Middleton's stardom needing to shine if the Bucks are to get their first NBA title since 1971.

Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 6/27/2021

The Tampa Bay Lightning are looking to repeat as Stanley Cup Champions and while having a complete team, they've relied on their goalie the most when their backs are against the wall.  Andrei Vasilevskiy stepped up in Games 5 and 7 to pitch shutouts after his Tampa Bay Lightning fought the New York Islanders at 2 games to 2, then 3 games to 3.  He stopped all 39 goals over the two wins, including clinging to a 1-0 lead in pivotal Game 7.  Vasilevskiy has won the Vezina for best goalie in the NHL in 2019, he was runner up this year, but is likely to lead his team to back-to-back Stanley Cup Championships.  And is the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week! 


Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 6/20/2021


An amazing sports weekend ended with an amazing victor for the first major of his golf career.  Just a few weeks removed from what will likely be the most disappointing weekend of his career when it's all said and done, Jon Rahm answered any mental anguish with a magnificent performance in the United States Open.  Rahm punctuated a magnificent back 9 on his fourth round with two physics defying birdies on 17 and 18 to take a one stroke lead over Louis Oosthuizen who was a few groups back and essentially finished against the course.  Oosthuizen finished the last 3 holes at par, but it was a bogey on 17 that doomed him from keeping a tie with Rahm and going to extra holes.  Rahm was disqualified from a tournament just a few weeks ago when he tested positive for COVID and with a huge lead, was not able to play on Sunday.  The US Open was a financial and career reconciliation in winning the Spaniard's first major tournament in what might be many for the highly ranked 26 year old.  He is a rising star in the sport, and the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, June 14, 2021

Sportswoman of the Week Ending 6/13/2021


Winner.  Best way to describer our Sportswoman of the Week.  Win the singles.  Win the doubles.  At a Grand Slam.  Of course we're talking about Barbora Krejcikova.  An improbable unseeded single, and highly seeded double did things that haven't been done in decades.  Krejcikova began the weekend by downing another improbable finalist in Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in the French Open finals at Roland Garros 6-1, 2-6, 6-4.  To cap off her weekend, she then won the doubles on Sunday with fellow Czech Katerina Siniakova beating Iga Swiatek and Bethanie Mattek-Sands 6-4, 6-2.  Entered Paris and never lost a match.  None of this was expected.  Krejcikova looked all the part of a Top 10 singles talent while not being ranked in the Top 30.  The Czech will be soon.  And our Sportswoman of the Week!

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 6/6/2021


The NBA Playoffs are kicking as we're down to the Top 4 (okay one 5) seeds in each conference battling for the Championship.  Most eyes were on the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers who were fraught with injury during the regular season but seemed poised to make a run because, well, they have LeBron and Davis.  Not so far says Devin Booker.  The 24 year-old budding superstar put his team on his shoulders to easily close out the Lake Show in Games 5 and 6 after the first two games were split.  Booker poured in 77 points, 18 rebounds, and 8 assists during the week to guide his Phoenix Suns to double digit victorys and slay the dragon.  The 2-time All Star has led the Suns to its first Playoff Series since 2010 and it looks like they'll be a force for years to come.  Booker is the future of the league and the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, May 31, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 5/30/2021


An epic weekend of sports commenced on Memorial Day weekend, unlike 2020 in which the country was imperiled with COVID shutdowns.  Memorial Day always anchors the Indianapolis 500 and this year's race more than lived up to the billing.  Historic even.  As Brazilian Helio Castroneves won his career record tying fourth Indy and the first in 12 years.  And he did it with style.  In what many described as the most entertaining (and statistically fast) race in recent memory as there was lots of action and passing rewarding 135K (partial attendance) fans who waited after missing last year.  The 46 year-old Castroneves beat out young stars like Alex Palou and Pato O'Ward to show experience over youth.  The race featured intriguing pit strategies but at the end, it was tactics and timing and the veteran shined.  Helio Castroneves is the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, May 24, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 5/23/2021


What a week in sports.  But rarely is there a story of a legend of the sport doing things well beyond one would think his age would allow.  Phil Mickelson.  Fifty.  Never a Sportsman of the Week winner until now.  His last major was the 2013 Open Championship (commonly called the British Open) in July 2013 but he was edged out by first time Tour de France winner Chris Froome. Taking the back seat no more.  At age 50, Phil Mickelson won the Professional Golf Association (PGA) Championship for his sixth major.  His first was 17 years ago (when literally at 33 some thought he may never win one).  He's won all four majors, this was his second PGA to go with two green jackets.  Mickelson was the only golfer with three rounds at 70 or better the first three days (runner up Brooks Koepka was the only with 3 at 71 or better).  Sunday of the PGA Championship weekend seemed more like match plays as lower placed golfers surged but Mickelson and Koepka battled down the stretch with Mickelson holding on for the win.  What a weekend and what a golfing legend, and a first time Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!

Thursday, May 20, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 5/16/2021


As a period of transition engulfs the Colorado Rockies franchise with the loss of key players, corner infielder Josh Fuentes stepped up to deliver a decent week for the struggling ball club.  With the Rockies floundering with the worst record in Major League Baseball, Fuentes put his team on his back for the week and led them to a 3-2 record by going 11-22, 2 HR, and tallying two or RBI in each game he played (13 total in five games).  His May batting average is warming up with the weather now at .347 to offset a struggling May.  The Rockies aren't going anywhere this year, but Fuentes is a player to watch, and the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, May 10, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 5/9/2021


Two for one sale, No Hitters are cheap!  I promise, my Blog isn't all about No Hitters but wow, we can't go a week without one happening.  This week two, but we give the nod to the pitcher on the team who hasn't pitched one since 1969.  Baltimore Orioles left handed pitcher John Means flummoxed the Seattle Mariners for no hits, no walks, and no errors over 9 innings.  The sole base runner?  Reached on a strikeout wild pitch.  That's how close to a perfect game.  The 28-year old Means is in his third year of being a workhorse starter but this was his first complete game or shutout.  The Orioles have been punching bag in the rough and tough AL East but this could be a turning point for the proud franchise.  John Means earns the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week! 

Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 5/2/2021


No Kentucky Derby jockey has ever won two Derbies in an eight month span.  Leave it to COVID to change that.  John Velazquez was brilliant on a second tier horse to win the 2021 Kentucky Derby for Medina Spirit.  What's amazing is the similarities to the 2020 Derby ran on Labor Day Weekend.  Both times it was legendary Bob Baffert's only entry.  Both times the horse wasn't the favorite.  Both times, Velazquez led him to victory.  Pretty much wire to wire from the Clubhouse turn on.  The stretch was harrowing four wide as horses had a clean run, but Velazquez and Medina Spirit would not be denied  It was great that fans could see, and Medina Spirit jockey John Velazquez is the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, April 26, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 4/25/2021


Three weeks in a row a no hitter in Major League Baseball?  According to MLB, no.  According to our Blog?  Yesssssss!  Arizona Diamondbacks lefty Madison Bumgarner navigated start to finish against the defending National League East champion Atlanta Braves and did not allow a batted ball in play that resulted in a runner that was not an error or fielders choice.  In fact, there was just one error in the game.  Bumgarner is an unlikely source for such a feat.  While in his prime he was one of the most feared pitchers in the League, including a 2014 World Series MVP (for which he won a Sportsman of the Week) to his credit, he has not been as effective.  He hasn't had a complete game since 2017.  A shutout since 2016.  What a performance and what a Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, April 19, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 4/18/2021


Two weeks into the MLB season and two no hitters.  It's not supposed to happen like this.  Especially early in the season where pitchers are presumably working up their pitch count.  Last week, Joe Musgrove did the improbable.  This week, Chicago White Sox hurler Carlos Rodon almost did the impossible.  A near perfect game.  The lefty took a perfecto into the 9th but on a fluke (or characteristic) unhittable sharp breaking ball, hit a batter on his foot with one out.  No worries, he retired the next two batters and preserved the no-no for an 8-0 victory over the Cleveland Indians.  Rodon, a 3rd overall pick in the 2014 Amateur draft, has struggled with injuries with only 11 starts in the last 2 years (2019-20).  It was Rodon's second complete game and first shutout.  And of course, first no hitter.  He did it and further reminded baseball fans how fun baseball is.  Our Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, April 12, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 4/11/2021


What a first full week for Major League Baseball and unbelievably we have our first no hitter!  Of 2021 and for the San Diego Padres!  With teams concerned about pitch counts and 10 person bullpens, Joe Musgrove ensured none were needed.  Facing just one more than the minimum, Musgrove sent down 27 Texas Rangers without allowing a hit.  Ten strikeouts, no walks and just a hit by pitch.  It was Musgrove's first complete game and, consequently, his first shut out.  Could not have come at a better time.  The Padres are expected to compete with the World Champion Los Angeles Dodgers and if they can get this sort of performance out of Musgrove, they just might unseat the champs.  A worthy Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, April 5, 2021

Sportswoman of the Week Ending 4/4/2021


Sports fans across the United States were deprived of March Madness in 2020.  The reward in 2021 is that much sweeter.  After recognizing as a Sportsman of the Week a player on the men's side last week, it was the Women's Final Four that was the story of the weekend.  Enter an all Pac 12 final, and enter our Sportswoman of the Week from the National Champion Stanford Cardinal.  Haley Jones of the Cardinal led a 4 guard attack that couldn't be slowed down in two, single point Final Four victories.  Jones chipped in 24 points in the semifinal against South Carolina Gamecocks, then another 17 against fellow Pac 12 rival Arizona to end the Final Four averaging over 20 points a game.  The Stanford Cardinal were champions for the first time in 29 years and Jones is the deserving Sportswoman of the Week!

Monday, March 29, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 3/28/2021


Another week of March Madness and we can't get enough of the action.  In the backdrop, top national seed Gonzaga is pushing to be the first undefeated NCAA Men's Basketball National Champion team since 1976.  So far this season, only one team has kept the Bulldogs within 10 points.  Neither of the teams they played this week kept them that close.  Led by Sportsman of the Week Drew Timme, Gonzaga averaged 17 point victories over the 8 seeded Oklahoma Sooners and 5 seeded Creighton Blue Jays.  Timme filled the box score in all categories, averaging 26 points (30 vs. OU, 22 vs. CU) and 9.5 rebounds.  He also got 4 assists per game so he wasn't greedy.  Gonzaga has long been a tournament darling but plays the favorite as they try and navigate to their first National Championship.  It will be Timme and teammates that can make it happen, he is a worthy Sportsman of the Week!

Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 3/21/2021


What an opening weekend of March Madness.  In an unpredictable season impacted all along the way with games rescheduled and cancelled but culminating in one of the biggest events in American Sports.  The NCAA Men's and Women's Basketball tournament.  This time last year sports fans ate a bitter pill when there was no possible path forward for the tournament as the country grappled with cancelled events and lock downs.  But the tournament was wide open on the first weekend.  On the Men's side, Oral Roberts Golden Eagles were one of the surprise teams, shocking one of the short-list tournament favorite Ohio State Buckeyes in overtime.  Not to be outdone, the 15-seed proceeded to defeat the Florida Gators in the second round.  Sweet 16 ticket punched.  They were led by experienced and talented forward Kevin Obanor.  The junior number "0" led the team with an average of 29 points over the first two games, and not only that, added 11 rebounds in both games.  He added 4 steals in the Florida win as well to be a complete stat sheet filler.  Oral Roberts next gets third seeded Arkansas.  Will they add another major program to their belt?  Our Sportsman of the Week Kevin Obanor will lead the Golden Eagles and make a good run at it!

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 3/14/2021


Spring sports are the best.  Even better when they're winter sports disguised in Spring.  Oh wait, it's actually winter another week.  Even despite clocks changing.  Got it.  Not the first time this Blog points to one of the great athletic events for a Sportsman of the Week in the Iditarod.  And not the first time our Sportsman of the Week took the title.  Dallas Seavey was the 12th ever winner of the Sportsman of the Week honor, but worthy again.  This week in the annual Dogsled Super Bowl as it were, Seavey won his fifth Iditarod (last SOTW was his first win) in 7 days, 14 hours, 8 minutes and 57 seconds.  The race was shortened to ensure a clean finish and without risk of COVID interruption.  At 34 years old, he ties the all time record of Rick Swenson and is poised to break his record in future years.  I'd love to give you a day by day analysis but I wasn't on the course and the ESPN coverage was spotty.  Let's just say Seavey is good and deserves Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, March 8, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 3/7/2021


Combat sports are in a transition phase, as traditional boxing (on the 50th anniversary of Ali-Frazier I) give way to what might be considered more action packed (read, shorter, fewer rounds) mixed martial arts.  The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) has continued to evolve in style, substance, and quality to take the main stage.  And last Saturday's UFC 259 (doesn't quite have the roman numerals like Super Bowls) provided action and surprise.  The action was defending champion Jan Blachowicz (Poland) versus the previous undefeated Israel Adesanya (Nigeria) in the Light Heavyweight (oxymoron anyone, dudes are 200 pounds) division.  Blachowicz was a +185 underdog but controlled Adesanya to demonstrate superiority.  Per the fight stats showed clear dominance for Jan as he had more strikes, significant strikes, take downs (3 to 0), and match control.  Resulted in an easy unanimous decision.  The 38-year old Blachowicz used his experience this time, but Adesanya is probably a champion of the future.  Great historical matchup, and a worthy Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, March 1, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 2/28/2021


The NBA is hitting its Spring stride and a familiar name is positioning his team for a potential deep NBA Playoff run and potential first title in 50 years (and you think your favorite team hasn't won in a while).  Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks has his team at the third seed and feared hoping to at least win the Eastern Conference since 1974.  The two-time reigning NBA MVP lit up opponents this week with 3 games of brilliance.  36-38 points in each game (37 PPG average), 13-15 made FG, throw in average 11 rebounds and 6 assists and not a bad week.  Oh, and 3 wins.  He's also the reigning defensive player of the year so complete two way threat.  Will the Bucks finally break through?  Will Antetokounmpo  win a third MVP?  To be determined, but he is our Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, February 22, 2021

Sportswoman of the Week Ending 2/21/2021


There's a changing of the guard on women's tennis, no doubt about it.  And it played out in the first Grand Slam tournament in 2021.  Japan's Naomi Osaka knocked off American legend Serena Williams in the Australian Open semifinals which had all the making of a passing of the torch.  Serena had little to defend against the younger, more athletic Osaka.  Neither did fellow American Jennifer Brady who put together a great tournament to even get to the finals, but could muster no more than the 7 games Serena did over 2 sets.  Only Garbine Muguruza could win a set against Osaka and along with the two Americans, the only ones to win 4 games in a set.  The 23 year old Osaka looks all the part of a humble tennis superstar, and this is her second Sportswoman of the Week!

Tuesday, February 16, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 2/14/2021


An annual rite of Spring (or at least late winter) is the restart of the NASCAR season in warm and sunny Florida for the Daytona 500.  Well at least it was warm and later, the rain that precluded the sun abated.  As unpredictable as the weather was the result of the race.  With former Cup champions Denny Hamlin leading the most laps, and Penske teammates Joey Logano and Brad Keselowski leading the final lap, it seemed certain a winner would be from the Final Four of 2020.  Au Contraire.  After Brad took out Joey, it was underdog Michael McDowell who took the checker after a fiery final lap and a yellow flag just before he was passed by 2020 Cup winner Chase Elliott.  It was McDowell's 358th Cup Series career start.  And first Cup Series race victory.  He was listed somewhere between 66-1 and 100-1 at the start.  But he's number one so far in 2021 and now punched his ticket to the NASCAR playoffs.  Michael McDowell is the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, February 8, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 2/7/2021


Hard to call it an upset when the winning quarterback already has six Super Bowl title.  Make it seven. But he wasn't the only experienced player on the field for the winning Tampa Bay Buccaneers.  His partner in crime from the New England Patriots days tight end Rob Gronkowski joined him and made two huge touchdown catches in the first half to send the Swashbucklers on their way to an easy 31-9 victory over the defending Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs.  That Buccaneers quarterback of some renown, Tom Brady, hit his favorite tight end twice for touchdowns in a short 9:32 span to take a 3-0 deficit to a 14-3 lead they would never relinquish.  Gronk led the Buccaneers receiving corps in targets, catches, and yards (in addition to touchdowns) showing once again his big game ability.  When he wasn't catching passes, he was a key run blocker on the edge helping the Pirates in Pewter Pants rush for 4.5 yards per carry to keep the Chiefs defense off balance.  Brady to Gronkowski will go down in Super Bowl lore, and the latter is a deserving Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, February 1, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 1/31/2021


It's the bye week for the NFL before the Super Bowl, which means we turn toward Spring Sports.  The National Hockey League is in full throat and a new star has emerged.  American net minder Thatcher Demko of the Vancouver Canucks emerged to snipe three victories (two against the Ottawa Senators, the other against the Winnipeg Jets), each allowing 1 goal.  And his Canucks charge toward the top of the North (a.k.a Canada) Division looking up at the big market Toronto Maple Leafs and Montreal Canadiens.  Overall 100 shots faced in the 3 games, 3 in.  My math says that's 97% save percentage, which is pretty good.  The 25 year-old Demko will be a key if the Canucks can make a run toward the Stanley Cup, and is our Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, January 25, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 1/24/2021


What a weekend of NFL Playoff Football with the the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Kansas City Chiefs headed to the Super Bowl crowned in their respective conferences.  While the quarterbacks stole the headlines for good reason, with 3 of the 4 being former MVPs, it was a defensive player who may have been the reason his team won.   Buccaneers LB Devin White was a force that could not be contained for the second week in a row.  He was a tackle machine with 15 total tackles, including 9 solo, which was double the other players on the field for either team.  But perhaps his most opportunistic game changes was when he scooped up a fumble on the Green Bay Packers initial possession of the second half and returned it 21 yards to the Green Bay 8 yard line.  One play later, the Bucs were up 28-10, a lead they would never relinquish on their way to a narrow 31-26 win.  Defensive players usually relinquish the accolades to the offensive weapons but not this week.  Devin White is the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week! 

Monday, January 18, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 1/17/2021


What a performance on what may go down as the greatest college football team of all time.  Alabama completed their perfect season with a thrashing of third ranked Ohio State Buckeyes 52-24 in a game that was pretty much over by halftime.  Two players stood out statistically and I'm giving the Sportsman of the Week nod to the one that played the entire game.  Alabama QB Mac Jones was near perfect in a technical dismantling of the Buckeyes defense.  He finished the evening only missing on 9 passes on a 36-45 virtuoso performance, tallying 464 yards (including 353 in the first half) and 5 TD.  His favorite target was Heisman Trophy winner DeVonta Smith who caught almost half the yards at 215 on 12 catches for 3 TD.  But after Smith left with an injury at halftime, Jones kept the pressure on with a back-breaking TD pass at the end of the 3rd quarter to put the Crimson Tide up by 20 or more points permanently.  It was close choosing between the two, but surrounded by superstars, Jones was the leader and a deserving Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, January 11, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 1/10/2021


For the first time in National Football League (NFL) history, a playoff weekend featured six (6) games of action and all but two of the playoff teams.  And it was spectacular.  The games featured several veteran quarterbacks presumably in their final couple of years (Brady, Brees, Roethlisberger, Rivers) but it was breakthroughs by younger players that stole the show.  Maybe none more than Buffalo Bills phenom Josh Allen.  Playing in his first home playoff game, his efforts gave Buffalo their first playoff victory in 25 years with a thrilling victory over the Indianapolis Colts 27-24. Their last victory was shortly after their four consecutive American Football Conference championships and even before the "Music City Miracle" heartbreaking defeat two decades ago.  Allen threw with pinpoint accuracy completing 26/35 passes for 324 yards and 2 TD.  But it may have been his legs that were more important.  With a rushing game stuck in neutral, Allen ran for 54 yards on 11 carries and another TD to lead his team in rushing as well.  All in all he accounted for 355 of the Bills 397 yards (taking away the sacks) and all three touchdowns.  Allen looks all the bit of a bargain at number 7 overall draft pick in 2018 and has he and the Bills poised for many more playoff victories.  Perhaps this Sunday against the Baltimore Ravens. Josh Allen is the Longhorndave Sportsman of the Week!

Monday, January 4, 2021

Sportsman of the Week Ending 1/3/2021

 


Amazing we enter our 10th year of Sportsmen and Sportswomen of the week, we continue where we started.  College Football Bowl Games.  One of the highlights of the sports calendar.  Admittedly 2020-21 was a tough year for Bowl Games, but they ended in a surprising star in the College Football Playoff (something that didn't exist 9 years ago).  The Sugar Bowl was dominated by Ohio State and led by who may have given the most clutch performance in 2020-21.  Buckeyes quarterback Justin Fields shredded the favored Clemson Tigers defense and made victory look easy.  After a completely lackluster, even poor performance in the Big 10 title game, Fields came to life.  And played the game of his life.  Fields completed 22/28 passes for 385 yards and six touchdowns.  Six.  He also ran for 42 yards just to keep the chains moving.  Time and time again he dropped back and made key passes to guys in coverage to break the will of the Tigers.  All this after suffering what appeared to be a game ending rub injury on what was ruled a controversial targeting on Clemson's James Skalski who (according to referee and replay ruling) "targeted" Fields in the ribs with his helmet leaving him wincing upon walking or throwing and Skalski sidelined for the rest of the game.  But Fields persevered in an heroic effort.  They'll need a repeat performance to beat the Alabama Crimson Tide in the National Championship game, but Fields was definitely the man of the match and the Sportsman of the Week.