March 21, 2020

Looks like we won the imaginary tournament.

I'm looking at a screen shot from the front page at FiveThirtyEight:



But if you go to the article — "Your Guide To The NCAA Men’s Tournament That Could Have Been" — Wisconsin is on the "Sleepers" list  ("Final Four probability: 6 percent").

So, how are you doing without your spectator sports? It's not a problem for me at all, but if you're a big sports spectator, what are you doing? Are you watching the channels that show old sports events? If you don't remember the outcome, is it kind of the same as watching a live game?

38 comments:

mccullough said...

Watched a baseball game from 1979 on MLB channel the other day.

Phillies beat the Cubs 23-22.

I was 6 years old back then.

Three things struck me:

1. A lot of mustaches then.

2. Pitchers, on average, throw the ball a lot harder now.

3. Players now are much more muscular. Mike Schmidt seemed like a big guy but Nolan Arenado has 30 pounds more of muscle and they are the same height

Martin said...

Spectator sports cancelled, bookies worst hit.

Ken B said...

Nate Silver. Sigh.

I Have Misplaced My Pants said...

I’m making travel arrangements today for Arizona State football games, or, well, that running around that punctuates the Sun Devil Marching Band. The show this year will be a an Earth, Wind and Fire medley which will be pretty fun.

Temujin said...

I'm going through withdrawal and looked up the other day to notice that there's a very cute woman doing things around my house.

I Have Misplaced My Pants said...

mccullough-we have been watching CHiPs during our WFH time — dudes were so small in general in the 70s. Women were pretty slim too, but the guys too - most of them running around with little 27” waists and looking like they didn’t top 150.

Curious George said...

I've watched a few sports re-runs. Mostly golf. You know the result, but you have forgotten the details. I could watch the final round of Jack at the 86 Masters again, and I've seen it many times already.

No different than watching movies or TV shows again. It's not just about how they end. It's about the art.

As far as the Badgers. Sure. LOL

Fernandistein said...

I didn't notice that anything was missing.

Shouting Thomas said...

Illini might have been a factor. They beat Wisconsin in Madison this year.

I would have been secretly rooting for Iowa. Not because they field an all white starting 5, but because I really enjoyed listening to the announcers squirm during Iowa's games as they tried to say the obvious without saying the obvious.

"They're a very cerebral team!" was the standard.

iowan2 said...

So do seniors get an extra year of eligibility? Conference tourneys and the NCAA are huge factors for turning pro and getting drafted early, or at all.

Yancey Ward said...

I was a huge college basketball fan since I can remember, but over the last 5 years or so, I just drifted away from it. Part of it had to do with the decline of my father into dementia- he lost interest in it, and it is one of the things we like to follow and talk about. I wrote here early last week that I hadn't actually watched a game on television all year long- I probably would have watched a few during this tourney, but, no, I haven't really missed it at all. As for the professional sports, I haven't watched a baseball game in a couple of decades, and only a handful of NBA games during that time. I watch more golf than any other sport at this point in my life, and I don't watch much of that either.

Sebastian said...

"So, how are you doing without your spectator sports?"

Fine. Considering that I still have my participation contact sport right here on the Althouse blog.

Come to think of it, we should have contests. Some won't need judges: most accurate predictions about the course of the pandemic a week down the line, etc. Some will need judging--wittiest post, asininest post. Then we can argue about the judging, mental-gymnastics-like.

As a service to out-of-work bookies, we should let them bet. How many comments into a thread before a lefty spouts off against Trump? That sort of thing.

Althouse! You can make a killing!

Yancey Ward said...

Schools in my town, Oak Ridge TN, are shuttered like elsewhere in the country, and probably will remained shuttered the rest of the year even though there is exactly 1 case of COVID-19 in the entire county as of yesterday morning, and it reminded me of my last year in high school. My school was flooded in early May of 1984, and the school was closed the rest of the year- the last three and half weeks. Our graduation was put off until the first week of June which was held in the local college's gymnasium. It hurt greatly that my friends and I missed those last 17 days of our school years- it was nothing like a snow day/week/s- it was an emotional loss. We now have an entire country's worth of such seniors at the high school and college level. I wonder what they are thinking right now?

David Begley said...

Fake News. The author only has Creighton winning one game and he lives in Omaha. Must be a Husker grad.

Sebastian said...

"We now have an entire country's worth of such seniors at the high school and college level. I wonder what they are thinking right now?"

That this is insane.

Pretty soon, we'll be back to the sixties: don't trust anyone over 50, particularly old politicians engaged in utterly destructive CYA operations to curry favor with other old people.

AtmoGuy said...

The Australian Football League (aka "footy") is playing their games without fans. This is the opening weekend of the men's season and the start of the playoffs for the women's. (The women were supposed to have two more weeks of regular season games, but they scrapped them and started an expanded playoffs.)

I was a fan before this, but now I am watching all of the matches that are televised, not just a couple. They are played in the middle of the night our time, but I just DVR them and watch them the next morning. I am watching a women's match as I type, Melbourne vs. GWS.

BarrySanders20 said...

"We now have an entire country's worth of such seniors at the high school and college level. I wonder what they are thinking right now?"

I have one of each. it’s mostly sadness and resignation. College senior had interviews set in two different cities this past week. Both converted to video interviews converted to phone interviews when the video links froze. Both companies say they are still hiring but I’ll believe it when I see it.

High school senior has to make the college decision by May 1. We had planned to go see two schools for spring break this past week. Both closed the campus to any and all. She is skeptical that kids will be allowed to crowd into dorms in August, so is even more uncertain About what to do. Kids seem to be taking reasonable precautions by limiting their social circles. When they are active it is small group activity like hiking or a few kicking a soccer ball around. They are sad they likely will lose their last season of spring sports, which around here is soccer.

whiskey said...

I know Althouse hates Babylon Bee, but maybe she'll like this one. https://babylonbee.com/news/wifes-prayer-for-her-husband-to-watch-less-sports-results-in-global-pandemic

John Cunningham said...

I'm a huge NCAAbasketball fan, and a Mich. State grad, so it's been tough. The old games are OK especially old MLB. I even watched cricket.

FleetUSA said...

As an LSU fan (not grad), I recorded the last 6 games. So I enjoy those as time permits.

Curious George said...

"Shouting Thomas said...
Illini might have been a factor. They beat Wisconsin in Madison this year.

I would have been secretly rooting for Iowa. Not because they field an all white starting 5, but because I really enjoyed listening to the announcers squirm during Iowa's games as they tried to say the obvious without saying the obvious.

"They're a very cerebral team!" was the standard."

Haha!

Here are more code words for white players:

1) Scrappy
2) High motor
3) Gamer
4) Sneaky athletic
5) Gritty
6) Winner
7) High basketball IQ
8) Good fundamentals
9) Plays the game the right way
10) Lunch pail guy
11) Heady
12) Deceptive speed
13) Gym rat
14) Intangibles
15) Gets the most out of his abilities
16) Has a lot of heart
17) Grinder
18) Out-hustles

WhoKnew said...

They need to restart ASAP so the Bruins can win the Stanley Cup fair and square. I don't care about all those other games.

Josephbleau said...

Speaking of small people in the 70’s, one of my secret vices is watching old WW2 military training films on YouTube. A really different look. They are pretty tall but all bones. They wear their pants up in their crotches with their belts at their sternum. They must have been permanently stunted as children, I assume they could eat all they wanted in the army, perhaps they did not let the fat ones on camera.

Tomcc said...

I enjoy watching sports. I grew up in Pittsburgh, so football, baseball, hockey are fun to watch and follow. Now I live in Portland, so I watch more basketball. I do miss it.
The "local sports" channel has been replaying notable Mariners games from last year. At two per night, they'll be done in a week.

Yancey Ward said...

What has ESPN 1 and 2 been showing? Their viewership was already in deep decline- this may be the final nail.

Big Mike said...

Interesting analysis, but keep in mind that in 2018 the Virginia Cavaliers had an even better record than this year’s Jayhawks before becoming the first #1 seed to fall to a #16.

Glad to see the Illini’s Ayo Dosunmu getting mentioned. Illinois down by one with seconds left in the game and Ayo has the ball? Other team can just go home.

Tomcc said...

Curious George; if you append the word "baby" to those terms, you're Dick Vitale!

Achilles said...

"So, how are you doing without your spectator sports?"

Personally fine. I don’t watch them much. I actually detest the NCAA.

But there are millions of people who have livelihoods built on these events. They have kids to feed.

Francisco D said...

I was a huge college basketball fan since I can remember, but over the last 5 years or so, I just drifted away from it.

I drifted away because of the "one-and-done" trend.

Those kids are very athletic and talented, but seem to have a rudimentary (at best) understanding of the game. The coaches have no time to teach them. The kids are rented for a year. Do they even attend classes?

I enjoyed seeing how college teams developed over time and took on personalities and rivalries. How can you beat UCLA (Lew Alcindor) versus Houston (Elvin Hayes)?

Meade said...

"The old games are OK especially old MLB. "

Last week I watched, somewhere, espn? documentary of Johnny Bench, 1976, Cincinnati Reds. Bench, everyone knows, put the big in The Big Red Machine. Glorious reliving those days. Many tears to my eyes. If someone were to offer me a 1970's Reds cable channel, all Reds all the time, I'd be a buyer.

Achilles said...

Yancey Ward said...
What has ESPN 1 and 2 been showing? Their viewership was already in deep decline- this may be the final nail.

ESPN is owned by Disney.

Disney makes more money in 2 hours selling mickey mouse hats than ESPN is worth.

ESPN's job is to push DISNEY's agenda in the sports world.

ESPN will be just fine.

Meade said...

I could also be happy watching the 1968-69 Boilers — Rick Mount, Billy Keller and Herm Gilliam — over and over again.

rcocean said...

I missed the NCAA tournament.

NBA from mid-March through the middle of the playoffs is fucking dull and I"m glad its off. They play 82 games and 16 of 30 teams make the playoffs. Result? The last couple months are boring. Similarly not watching April MLB is no great loss.

I hope the Masters does not get cancelled. There's no reason they can't play without the crowds. Or they could reschedule to September.

rcocean said...

I'm just glad the WNBA and US Major League soccer is unaffected.

iowan2 said...

I would have been secretly rooting for Iowa. Not because they field an all white starting 5, but because I really enjoyed listening to the announcers squirm during Iowa's games as they tried to say the obvious without saying the obvious.

No suprise I am a big Hawkeye fan. Thick and thin. I listened every Saturday during harvest to feckless Hawks led by Frank Laudaber, then Bob Cummins. Zabel on WHO radio. But God is a Hawkeye and sent Hayden Fry.

This years basketball was as much fun as I can remember. Why? Luka Garza. The most improved college player in the last 20 years. He was fun to watch, never got down, always working, positive attitude. Great season. Next year should be great with two big outside scorers coming back from red shirt season, and 2 returning from this years players.

Beaneater said...

I'm with mccullough in the first response. I've been watching lots of Red Sox highlights. Even between 2004 and now, you can tell a difference in how hard the pitchers are throwing. A guy throwing 93-94 was really humping it up there back then. A guy like Papelbon who, a few years later, was throwing 95-96 consistently – well, that kind of guy was a demigod. Now, relief guys who throw 96 are a dime a dozen. That is quite noticeable. (So are all the Tommy John surgeries...)

To respond to Althouse's post, I am not happy about losing a chunk of the MLB season. I'm indifferent to all the other sports cancellations. I will be really heartbroken if my son's one and only year of Little League baseball gets cancelled or heavily modified. (It's his one and only year because we're usually based in Africa, but we are in the States for this school year.)

JAORE said...

Silver must have misplaced a decimal.

Rock Chalk Jayhawk.

Jeff Brokaw said...

NCAA March Madness is absolutely one of my favorite sports events of the entire year — there’s nothing else like it and the drama and tension is without peer.

So, I miss it A LOT. Also, no baseball opening day coming up, no NHL hockey approaching Stanley Cup playoffs.

In normal years I have these things to look forward to as a distraction from daily stresses of life.

It sucks. This entire thing feels like a giant overreaction, for a lot of reasons.