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My Take On Tiger . . . And UC's NCAA Chances

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I was on a plane from Boston to Cincinnati yesterday morning from 10:15 to 12:59, meaning I was one of the few people on the face of the earth who wasn't glued to the TV during Tiger Woods public apology.

 

Immediately after landing, I turned on my smart phone and read what Tiger said online.

 

I thought it was just about perfect - until I saw the video.

 

It's just my opinion, but Tiger's wooden performance on camera dulled the impact of his words.  He looked like a politician looking into the camera as he delivered his closing comments at the end of a televised debate.

 

But if you ignore the stilted delivery and read the text, Tiger apologized for his behavior, defended his wife, vowed to be a better person, and asked for our forgiveness.  What else was he supposed to do?

 

As a reporter, I would love to interview him.  I want to know how he got caught and for how long he's lived in fear that he would get busted.  I'm interested in what he thinks this has done to his legacy as one of the greatest athletes of all time.

 

But I completely understand why he didn't hold a news conference and I'm amused by media members that seem offended by that.  He's dealing with incredibly embarrassing issues for himself and his family.  Who knows what a reporter from TMZ or the National Enquirer would ask?

 

Tiger's behavior has cost him millions of dollars, but he has plenty of money left.  He might never get his wife and kids back, not to mention the respect and admiration of millions of fans.

 

He's said enough for me. 

 

* * * * *

 

I was honored to serve as master of ceremonies for UC's Legion of Excellence celebration on Friday night that saw three all-time Bearcat greats enter the James P. Kelly Athletics Hall of Fame:  Track legend Mary Danner Wineberg, Soccer All-American Andrew Kean, and Football Star/Basketball Sub Brad Jackson.

 

Wineberg, who won a gold medal in the 4 x 400 meter relay in the 2008 Olympics, told the audience that she hopes to compete in the 2012 games in London.

 

Kean wore a traditional Scottish kilt and spoke in a thick brogue about what it meant to come to the United States and attend the University of Cincinnati.

 

Jackson became quite emotional as he discussed why he will always be a Bearcat.  In my introduction I said the following:  "As a football player, he'll be remembered as one of the hardest hitters in Bearcat history.  As a basketball player, he'll be remember as . . . one of the hardest hitters in Bearcat history."  It's worth noting that Marvin Lewis - who coached Jackson as a member of the Baltimore Ravens - was in attendance to see Brad enter the UC Hall of Fame.

 

In addition to the new Hall of Fame class, Jack Drake, Dr. Frederick Haffner, and Carl Lindner were inducted into the Order of the Black Blazer, which recognizes individuals for their contributions and support of UC Athletics.  Presentation of the Strubbe Distinguished Service Award went to John Courter and Sue Stephens Jones.

 

It's always a first-class event.  Kudos to everyone who did a magnificent job of putting it together.

 

* * * * *

 

Sunday's home game against Marquette is obviously a huge one for the Bearcats.  In my opinion, if UC can go 3-2 in its final five regular season games, the team would be right on the NCAA bubble going to the Big East Tournament since two of those victories would have to be "quality wins."

 

Tuesday night's offensive performance at USF was ugly, but the NCAA tournament committee doesn't watch every minute of every game, they only go by results and a road loss at USF isn't a deal-breaker.

 

Every bracketologist - without exception - has Cincinnati right in the mix for one of the final spots in the Field of 65.

 

Let's hope the 'Cats seize the opportunity beginning with critical back-to-back home wins over Marquette and DePaul.

 

Hope to see you at Fifth Third Arena.

 

I'd love to hear from you.  The address is dhoard@pawsox.com.

 

And if you Twitter, you can follow my tweets at http://twitter.com/Dan_Hoard

 

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