Tough To Pick Against Indy

Bobby Curran
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Friday - February 03, 2010
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Peyton Manning could be the difference against New Orleans

Here’s hoping that the Law of Failed Expectations won’t kick in for Sunday’s Super Bowl. According to the rule, whenever you get two exciting conference championship games, the expectations that we’ll get a fabulous Super Bowl grow - and inevitably, it’s a dud.

Which would be a shame, because S.B. 44 has the potential to be a game for the ages. You have two explosive offenses with fabulous quarterbacks and game-breakers at the skill positions, defensive play-makers on both sides and a pair of fascinating side-bars. The Saints have become closely identified with a resurgent city still recovering from the effects of Hurricane Katrina. There is a feeling that this is destiny’s team, and quarterback Drew Brees has become a powerful voice for hope in the community. And Peyton Manning is going up against the team for whom his father was the face of the franchise, the single player most often identified with the struggling Aints of the 1970s and early ‘80s. Peyton and his brothers grew up in New Orleans, and most of their childhood friends are serious Saints fans.

It’s a tough game to handicap, but I’m going with the Colts because Peyton Manning has an almost preternatural ability to break down a defense. But I’ll feel good for the city of New Orleans if the Saints pull off the upset.

* Hawaii’s boxing fans had a scary moment when Brian Viloria suffered a 12th-round TKO at the hands of Colombian Carlos Tamora in the Philippines. He was taken to the hospital after collapsing in his dressing room following the bout.

By all reports Viloria was comfortably ahead late in the fight, but ran out of gas trying to knock out his feisty opponent and suffered a last-round pummeling. It appears that Viloria’s collapse was because of extreme dehydration and exhaustion, and that he is fully recovered.

His longtime manager, Gary Gittleshohn, said they’ll wait a while before evaluating Viloria’s future. Gittlesohn regards Vilora as a member of his family and does not depend on the fighter for his income; he would be the last person to suggest that Viloria continue to fight if he felt it was against his best interests.

“Brian, physically, can perform at a high level,” said Gittlesohn, “but we’ll see where he is in his heart. He made a tactical error in this fight, but he was the better fighter. He wanted to please the crowd so much that it led to this result.”

Viloria is lucky to have a manager like Gittlesohn who cares so much about him. Together they’ll make the right decision.

* Around the WAC, a persistent rumor is swirling, and it holds that the Mountain West wants to expand to 12 teams and plans to add Boise State, Fresno State and Nevada so it can have a football conference championship game. That would be a huge irony if it turns out to be true, as the Mountain West was formed by schools breaking away from what was considered an unwieldy 16-team WAC. Needless to say, this would decimate the WAC if it comes to pass. It doesn’t seem to pass the common—sense test, though. There would be smaller shares of the pie for all.

While Boise State might make sense, it’s hard to imagine Fresno State and Nevada bringing in more than they’d take out.

I’m also not sure that a MWC championship game would be the huge money affair that they think it would be. I’m hoping that the rumors are false. It’s hard to see the WAC as viable minus that trio.

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