The Stack is back on this Friday and we are running the right way with this blog unlike Kent State returning a punt...sorry, sorry, low blow. The video of that play can be found here. Sportscenter Not Top Ten here we come. We don't have too much left this week to talk about on this last day of August. So without further ado, let's see what made "the stack" for this last day of the work week (for most of us) for Friday, August 31:
Andy Roddick to retire
America's tennis hopes for a long time rested on the shoulders of Andy Roddick. After the U.S. Open, they will have to go to someone else. Roddick announced Thursday that he will retire once he is eliminated from the Open. His second round matchup is set for tonight. Once a promising young test star, Roddick's greatest moment on the court came at the U.S. Open in 2003 when he won it all, his lone Grand Slam title. He reached four other finals including the epic 2009 final at Wimbledon against Roger Federer in which he lost the fifth set 16-14. But all in all, Roddick's career has to be considered a disappointment. He never lived up to his full potential whether that be because of injuries or early tournament exits. Maybe Americans just had to high of expectations for Roddick. He did win 32 tournaments in his career, but we tend to judge someone's career based on how many majors they win. When you only win one though, I think the overwhelming majority of people view that as a disappointment.
And you have to wonder where the next great American tennis player is. Jason Isner and Sam Querrey are good and all, but they don't scream top of the game players like Djokovic or Nadal. American tennis has been in trouble for a long time now. It needs someone to come along and get us all interested back in tennis again.
Strasburg has "2-3 starts left"
Do the Washington Nationals want to make a run in the postseason or not? Manger Davey Johnson says he's spoken with Stephen Strasburg about his innings count and the number of starts his young ace will make the rest of the season. Yes, this is Strasburg's first full season since coming back from Tommy John Surgery, but he has looked great this year and is one of the big reasons the Washington Nationals are in first in the NL East, five games up on the Atlanta Braves. He's 15-6 with a 3.05 ERA and 186 strikeouts. I understand you want to protect him for the future. But it won't make Nationals fans very happy if the team just seems happy to make it to the postseason and then shelves their best pitcher for that run. I believe that one of the reasons the Nationals recent mini-slide (although not a huge one, but one that included getting swept by the Phillies) was in part to Strasburg not playing because it had a psychological effect on the team. Here's a solution. Maybe the Nationals should wait with Strasburg and give him one tune up start in the last week of the season and then have him for at least two starts in the playoffs. If the Nationals move on to say the World Series, I find it very difficult that they would say no to Strasburg pitching.
NFL preseason done
Week four of the NFL preseason is in the books. YEAH!!! Some bad games last night and they are done. It was important though for backups looking to make their resepctive teams. Final cuts to the 53-man roster are today. Then you can get guys on the practice squad and everything. Interesting to see how things shake out. The regular season begins for real Wednesday, September 5 between the Dallas Cowboys and Super Bowl champion New York Giants. Can't wait!
Notable college football games this weekend
Last night, #9 South Carolina narrowly got by Vanderbilt 17-13. Vandy fans are still wondering why no pass interference penalty was called at the end of the game. Still the Commodores were game and are heading in the right direction. They'll make some noise this year. The Gamecocks may have not won the game had starting quarterback Connor Shaw not come back into the game in the first half with a bruised right, throwing shoulder. South Carolina fans had to have been concerned when he went down. But he came back and combined with running back Marcus Lattimore (one of the best running back in the game) they led the Gamecocks to a big road win.
Mike Leach had an amazing offense at Texas Tech. In his debut as Washington State head coach, Thursday's game proved he still has a long way to go with his team. They lost 30-6 to BYU. Ouch!
As for the weekend, there are some big games on the dockett. A few of the more noticeable ones include:
#24 Boise State @ #13 Michigan State (tonight, 8 PM ET ESPN)
#14 Clemson vs. Auburn (Saturday 7 PM ET ESPN, played at the Georgia Dome)
Navy vs. Notre Dame (9 AM ET CBS, played in Dublin, Ireland)
Georgia Tech @ #16 Virginia Tech (Monday 8 PM ET ESPN)
Grand-daddy of of them all: #8 Michigan vs. #2 Alabama (8 PM ET ABC, played at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, TX)
And of course how can we forget South Dakota State @ Kansas, Saturday 7:00 PM ET. It's my alma mater. Had to put it in there.
Enjoy the weekend of college football as the 2012-13 season kicks off!
The Stack is most likely taking Labor Day off in preperations for the big NFL season preview on Tuesday. Don't miss that. Of course if there is huge news over the weekend or something big in college football, we'll be here. Enjoy the long weekend everyone.
Coming up Tuesday: NFL Season Preview