Urgency Lacking In NFL Talks

Bobby Curran
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Friday - January 26, 2011
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When word came out last week that representatives of the NFL were meeting with NFLPA executive DeMaurice Smith but that the meetings were “an attempt to advance the bargaining” rather than a formal negotiating session, I was reminded of the grinding wheels of an entrenched bureaucracy where a committee is formed to choose a committee that selects the committee ...

Well, you get the point.

It seems that precious little is getting done, and nobody is yet willing to make any concessions.

When I asked former NFL assistant player rep Ross Tucker how it looks, he said, “It’s looking slightly worse than it did before. Absolutely nothing of substance is happening. I’m still optimistic because it’s hard to imagine that with the league doing so well, and the pie so big, that intelligent people wouldn’t find a way to settle this.”

So you’d think, especially with one of the main issues for the owners being a rookie salary cap.

This represents zero pain for the players - years ago the NBA union threw the future rookies under the bus with nary a backward glance. Most veteran players think the astronomical guarantees to untested draftees to be outrageous anyway.

The second important management issue is the extension of the season to 18 games, which the players are not wild about but may use as a bargaining chip to prevent any major givebacks.

Yes, it makes dollars and sense to get a deal done, but there are major egos involved here, and I’m expecting a lockout into training camp that hopefully will not compromise a full regular season.

* Recent travels with the UH basketball team have made me more anxious than ever for most UH sports to move to the Big West.

Snowstorms in Logan, Utah ... frigid temperatures and travel delays out of Ruston, La., and Las Cruces, N.M. ... interminable layovers from Moscow, Idaho ...

All that will be in the rear-view mirror come 2013.

The California-based Big West will feature flights to L.A. or San Francisco, and then relatively short drives in comparatively balmy weather, and it will be cheaper to boot. I won’t miss inching along in a blizzard with avalanche warnings, as we recently experienced in Sardine Canyon between Salt Lake City and Logan.

* The most excited of any UH coach might be Mike Trapasso, whose Rainbows will be joining a conference perennially in the top five in RPI. Coupled with the non-conference opponents that UH traditionally lures to Murakami Stadium, the Rainbows will often be able to generate one of the best schedules in the country, where playing .600 ball should about guarantee an invitation to an NCAA regional.

The 2011 baseball Bows have 18 new players and at least 10 lively arms. You can get a preview at the Grand Slam Celebration coming up Feb. 13.

Check out Hawaiiathletics.com for more information. UH baseball continues to be one of the best family entertainment values in the entire state.

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