Hard to think about baseball during the wettest month we've ever had, but the Crosstown Shootout revives itself the next two days. UC will host Xavier at 6:30 p.m. tonight, though the Muskies will be the home team since the game was supposed to be played off Victory Parkway.
Head on out to the Marge Schott Stadium and enjoy some baseball.
--- Butch Jones spoke at Paul Brown Stadium last night to boosters and other UC folks about two games moving downtown. I didn't attend and we've discussed this topic at length multiple times, so I won't repeat tired content. Bottom line: Packed NFL stadiums do wonders for recruiting and pocketbooks. The End.
--- Speaking of NFL stadiums, UC players are currently sweating out what will happen in this weekend's draft. Fox19 caught up with WR Vidal Hazelton and C Jason Kelce earlier this spring and chatted about their draft prospects.
Kelce makes fantastic points against those saying he's too small to play center in the NFL. He stands 6-foot-3, 290/295 pounds as he regains weight lost following his appendectomy. He mentioned Olin Kruetz and Jeff Saturday. I'll mention one of the great centers of the modern era, Dermontti Dawson. The 7-time Steelers first team All-Pro stood 6-2, 288 pounds.
Let's take a look at centers drafted in the last seven years that became consistent everyday starters in the NFL.
Jeff Faine/Cleveland/No. 21 6-3, 303
Dan Koppen/NE/No. 164 6-2, 296
Nick Hardwick/SD/No. 66 6-4/295
Chris Spencer/Seattle/No. 26 6-3/309
Jason Brown/Balt/No. 124 6-3/313
Nick Mangold/NYJ/No. 26 6-3/295
Ryan Kalil/Carolina/No. 59 6-3/299
Samson Satele/Miami/No. 60 6-3/300
John Sullivan/Minn/No. 187 6-4/300
Alex Mack/Cleveland/No. 21 6-4/312
Eric Wood/Buffalo/No. 28 6-4/304
Max Unger/Seattle/No. 49 6-4/299
Maurkice Pouncey/Pitt/No. 18 6-4/304
J.D. Walton/Denver/No. 80 6-3/299
--- Of the 14 "success stories" among centers on the list, six are listed below 300 pounds and another two listed right at 300. Many would consider Nick Mangold the best center in the game, he's a two-time All-Pro and three time Pro Bowler. He's listed at Kelce's exact height and weight of 6-3, 295.
Kelce's also a replica of the Patriots' Koppen, a late-round center success story Bill Belichick uncovered. Belichick worked out Kelce recently. Possible passing of the torch within a year or two in New England?
Point being, to criticize Kelce for a "lack of size" more indictes teams who didn't do their research on why Kelce was so slim at the combine. Somebody will give Kelce a chance and he has an opportunity to be a difference-maker early on. That's really all you can ask for.
--- Some randomness...
--- Here's a fascinating NY Times read on Title IX deception and gender equity in college athletics.
--- Ken Griffey Jr.'s son Trey and Barry Sanders Jr. are among the brightest stars of the 2012 class. When did I become an old man?
--- That's picture is about right.
--- New Beastie Boys album, live streaming here. Whatcha whatcha whatcha want?
--- Ben Crane is known as one of the most boring golfers on Tour. Turns out he's hilarious. And can grow a sensational mustache.