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Monday Mash-Up: Any Given Sunday

Whew! What a weekend in sports, huh?! Drama on 18. Missed field goals with seconds left. No reason to write the word “replacem—”… I can’t bring myself to type it. I feel like everything is right in the world again. 

Where should we begin? 

I’m thinking we start with the marquee miss of the weekend — “The Meltdown at Medinah.” Let me just begin by saying that I blame the cop. But I’ll get to that later.

I explained the format and the history of The Ryder Cup to you all in my last post. If you missed it, shame on you just scroll down. For now, I’ll skip ahead to a quick breakdown of Team USA’s epic fail. As ESPN so cleverly put it, they “Red, White and Blew It.” 

2012 Ryder Cup — A Recap

I have a feeling I’ll lose you if I go through all three days of Ryder Cup matches, so I’m just going to bullet out a few points. You know, an outline. Here goes:

  • Team USA led Team Europe 10-6 heading into Sunday’s head-to-head matches. Meaning, they needed just 4.5 points to clinch the win. In other words, 4 wins and a tie. Europe needed 8. 
  • Six of the 12 matches went to the 18th hole Sunday. Team USA only won one of them. 
  • The only U.S. points came from Dustin Johnson, Zach Johnson and Jason Dufner. 
  • Team USA anchors Tiger Woods and Steve Stricker didn’t win a single match at Medinah CC. 
  • Team Europe’s win ties for the best comeback in Ryder Cup history. Team USA fashioned a similar 10-6 comeback at Brookline CC near Boston in 1999. 
  • Martin Kaymer’s six-foot par putt on 18 sealed the win for Team Europe. 

So why, you ask, do I blame a Chicago-area police officer for Team USA’s loss on Sunday. It’s simple. That cop cost us a point. The point that would’ve made it 14.5-13.5 USA. 

Here’s the story. On Friday and Saturday, players are paired up in teams, so both Team USA and Team Europe ride together to the course. On Sunday, however, it’s every man for himself. Thus, Team Europe players were left to find their own way to Medinah.

Well, this wasn’t a problem for 11 of the 12 guys. But nobody told Rory McIlroy that Chicago isn’t in the eastern time zone.  So, as Rory strolled out of his hotel, thinking his tee time was an hour away, he got a call from a frantic coach telling him he teed it up in 25 minutes. BLIMEY!!

McIlroy ran out and found an obliging (and clearly non-patriotic) police officer to drive him to Medinah. He barely made it, arriving just 10 minutes before his start time. Rory teed it up, won his match and earned a point for Europe. BOLLOCKS!!

Now, I don’t like cheap wins any more than the next guy. But, when it comes to getting a “w” for the stars and stripes, I say all’s fair. The way I see it, that cop should’ve left Rory to live with his mistake and find his own way to the course. If you’re not 15 minutes early, you’re late. Right? Who knows, maybe that would’ve caused just enough of a hiccup in Team Europe’s momentum to prevent their historic comeback. Just a throwing it out there. If you don’t like it, feel free to just throw it on back….

Moving on.

I woke up yesterday feeling like the stars had realigned and that the NFL season was finally underway. I’ve never been more excited to see Hochuli’s biceps (that’s my last reference to refs, promise.)

With week 4 almost in the books, things seem to be shaping up just as they were meant to. With a few surprises, of course. Here’s where we stand, ladies:

Expected:

  • Patriots roll over the Bills with Tom Brady passing for 340 yards, 3 TDs and no interceptions. New England is now in a 3-way tie for the AFC lead. 
  • Houston and Baltimore both sit atop their respective divisions (name ‘em!) with wins this week. Houston is still rolling, now 4-0. 
  • Giants/Eagles game was a shootout last night with Philadelphia claiming the 19-17 win after a missed field goal by New York. Eagles now lead the dog fight for the lead in the NFC East. 
  • Kansas City, Oakland, Miami, Cleveland and Detroit are all struggling to find traction and bounce back from losing records. 

Surprising:

  • After a close 28-27 loss to Green Bay, New Orleans is 0-4 on the season and in last place in the NFC South. 
  • Minnesota Vikings are leading the NFC North after a 20-13 win over Detroit. Green Bay is 2-2 and in third place in this division (insert asterisk here.)
  • Arizona still boasts a 4-0 record after an overtime win against Miami. 

I apologize for my long-winded post today. I just get so excited! 

Don’t forget Monday Night Football tonight — Bears vs. Cowboys; 8:30 ET, ESPN