In case you missed it, Adam Jones – known as “Pacman” Jones to many NFL fans – is in trouble with the law. Again. The charges this time include obstructing official business, disorderly conduct and assault; there is video of Pacman raging against officers from the back of a police vehicle telling the officer(s) that he hopes they die tomorrow and that they will be out of a job tomorrow. [Aside: I suspect the “loss of life” would necessarily imply a “loss of job”, but the redundancy of the statement is not particularly important here.] And, it is alleged that once he arrived at the hoosegow, he spit on a nurse who was attending to his processing.
It would be an exaggeration to say that Jones rides in police cars as often as millennials ride in Ubers, but it would not be an exaggeration to suggest that Jones could provide direct testimony regarding the comfort level and the amenities provided in the rear seats of police vehicles from a variety of jurisdictions. I do not pretend that what follows is based on exhaustive research; these are just some of his previous encounters with the gendarmes:
- He has been accused of assaulting two women.
- He was the one who “made it rain” in a Las Vegas nightclub that led to a shooting incident leading to lawsuits from victims that cost Jones more than $12M as a result of the incident.
- He served a 1-year suspension from the NFL and has undergone substance abuse rehab.
- He got into a fight with a bodyguard employed by the Cowboys that engendered a trip in a police car.
According to reports, he has now been arrested “at least nine times”. He arrived in the NFL a bit late to play for an Al Davis team but he has played for a Jerry Jones team and found a way to wear out his welcome there before joining the Bengals where he was merely a cog on the wheel of eccentricity there in Cincy. Jones is now 33 years old and – frankly – his coverage skills started to show bits of wear and tear last season. One has to wonder if he still has sufficient talent to overcome his rather obvious “behavioral issues”.
Moving on … I happened to be grazing through the cable channels and came across a “panel discussion” on NFL Network where the subject was organizational stability and how that stability was a critical component for successful franchises. The Patriots, Steelers and Packers were cited as current examples of long-term organizational stability; people recalled the stability of the “Bill Walsh 49ers” and the “Shula Dolphins” and the “Lombardi Packers”. As the discussion turned to some of the “less stable franchises”, one of the panel members – I did not recognize him – mentioned the Buffalo Bills and he said that the Bills last playoff appearance had been prior to the Patriots hiring of Bill Belichick. It is not that I did not believe him, but I went and checked and came up with three facts:
- The Bills’ last playoff appearance was on Jan 8, 2000 in a loss to the Tennessee Titans in the wild card round. The Pats hired Bill Belichick on Jan 27, 2000.
- When Bill Belichick took the Pats’ job, Wade Philips was the Buffalo head coach. Since Phillips was fired at the end of the 2000 season, the Bills have had 7 “full time head coaches” plus interim coach Anthony Lynn in the 2016 season plus newly hired Sean McDermott.
- Phillips’ record in Buffalo was 29-19 when he was fired. Since then every subsequent head coach has left with a record below .500.
Last week, one of the minor college football bowl games went belly up. There will be no more Poinsettia Bowl games; the rich 12-year tradition of this game will have to live on only in memory. These games have been played in San Diego and the demise of this game leaves the city with only one college bowl game – the Holiday Bowl – which will soldier on.
One organization was responsible for staging these two bowl games in the past and here is the statement from its executive director regarding the Poinsettia Bowl:
“College football and the bowl game structure has gone through major changes through the years and our board feels the time is right to focus our efforts on one post-season game. The San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl staged exciting match-ups for more than a decade and we were one of the few cities to host two bowl games.”
Here are the data that probably led to the decision to deep-six this game:
- Average attendance at the Poinsettia Bowl game for the last 12 years has been just under 32,500 fans. That would be a stupendous crowd for a Wednesday night game between two MAC teams, but that is just a smattering of folks for a college football game of any importance.
- In the last 6 of the Poinsettia Bowl games, attendance has only gone over 30,000 in the two years when San Diego St. played in the game. That indicates that despite the great weather in San Diego in December/January, people were not traveling from Wherever, USA to San Diego to see a game they considered an after-thought.
- When the Poinsettia Bowl first appeared on the college football scene in 2005, there were 28 post-season bowl games. In 2016, there were 41 post-season bowl games. To me the message is clear and perhaps the demise of the Poinsettia Bowl will “spread the word”. There are simply too many college football bowl games and at least two-thirds of them are sufficiently meaningless that they could be discontinued with no pain to anyone other than TV networks looking to fill 168 hours a week with programming.
Finally, here is a definition from The Official Dictionary of Sarcasm:
“Adult: What you become when you finally give up drinking, sleeping around and bouncing from job to job. Also known as kill-me-now syndrome.”
But don’t get me wrong, I love sports………