THE BOYS ARE BACK AT OLSEN!
It’s Week 8 of the high school football season here on KSCJ Radio, the penultimate Friday of the regular season. The boys are returning to Elwood Olsen Stadium on the campus of Morningside College to bring you all the action as the West Wolverines (2-5, 0-3), led by head coach Joe Schmitz, welcome the Council Bluffs Abraham Lincoln Lynx (1-6, 0-3) and head coach John Wolfe.
With just two games remaining this season, the possibility of playoff football is looking grim in Sioux City.
Under the Iowa High School Athletics Association procedure, 16 teams from each class will qualify for the playoffs. These consist of the district champion (7), the district runner-up (7), and 2 at-large qualifiers. Sioux City can forget about any school receiving an at-large bid because, well, someone at the IHSAA office in Boone would have to know Sioux City exists.
As it stands through 7 weeks, West (4A, District 2) and North (4A, District 1) are mathematically eliminated. East (4A, District 1) currently sits in 3rd place with a 2-1 district record, behind Waukee and Johnston, who are both 3-0. The Black Raiders should beat Des Moines East this weekend on the road this week, which will put them at 3-1. Waukee and Johnston face each other this weekend, so one of them will be 3-1 and one will be 4-0 by the time Nightline airs on Friday night. Next week, East faces Johnston at home on Friday night, while Waukee plays North on Thursday. So, if Waukee beats Johnston this week and East does the same next week, the Black Raiders will be in the playoffs. However, if Johnston wins one of its next two games, East’s season will end next Friday night. Since we will all be rooting for East next week, break out your purple and gold and root on the Waukee Warriors this week to defeat the Johnston Dragons. Then, next week, put on your black and orange, stay home, turn on KSCJ, and listen to us call an East win over Johnston.
The coin is still in the air for Bishop Heelan’s playoff hopes, as well. The Crusaders (3A, District 1) are currently 3-2 in the district. Their final 2 regular season games are both on the road against Humboldt this week and Spirit Lake next week. Presently, Sergeant Bluff-Luton sits atop District 1 at 5-0. Storm Lake is in second place at 4-1. The Crusaders are tied for third place with Spirit Lake and Spencer. In short, Bishop Heelan needs to win out to keep its playoff dreams alive. That would put them at 5-2 in the district. Sergeant Bluff-Luton and Storm Lake meet next week. This week, Storm Lake plays at home against Spencer, while Sergeant Bluff-Luton will be on the road to face Spirit Lake (and Tweeter’s will be full of fans wearing black and orange before the game). With 3 teams tied for 3rd place in the district right now, the scenarios are several where Bishop Heelan could squeak into the playoffs. If it comes down to a tie for 2nd place between Bishop Heelan and Storm Lake, the Crusaders will get the bid because they hold the head-to-head matchup advantage, having defeated Storm Lake earlier this season. So, the least complicated scenario for Bishop Heelan to make the playoffs is for Sergeant Bluff-Luton to win out and Storm Lake to defeat Spencer this week.
You get all that?
In the words of Martin Mull as Ron Richardson in “Mr. Mom,” “Somebody…better figure out a way to sell some tuna fish pretty damn quick!”
It’s been a weird week in sports.
I subscribe to one daily newspaper, the Journal. No, not that Journal. I mean THE Journal. The Wall Street Journal. For years, I’ve believed the sports coverage it contains is among the best in the country. This week, it did not disappoint me.
Journal sportswriter Andrew Beaton revealed a doozy.
It seems a lady named Jane Skinner Goodell, who is also known as Mrs. Roger Goodell, the wife of NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, has been operating an “anonymous” Twitter account, @forargument, under the name “Jones smith”. The account has no profile picture, no followers, and has had long periods of inactivity since its creation 3 years ago.
The @forargument account has risen from the dead during recent months, however, to electronically spar with various national media outlets. When @profootballtalk tweeted it was “on the commissioner” to resolve this whole National Anthem situation, @forargument replied, “Please do better reporting. He is already doing this. You are behind.”
The folks at the Wall Street Journal figured this all out and contacted Mrs. Goodell. Her reply confirmed in a written statement she was the fingers behind @forargument:
“It was a REALLY silly thing to do and done out of frustration—and love. As a former media member, I’m always bothered when the coverage doesn’t provide a complete and accurate picture of a story. I’m also a wife and a mom. I have always passionately defended the hard-working guy I love—and I always will. I just may not use Twitter to do so in the future!”
The @forargument account has now vanished from Twitter.
Earlier this month, ESPN tweeted a link to an article about the NFL’s response to President Donald Trump’s attacks regarding the players’ National Anthem behavior. The reply from @forargument: “Reads like press release from players’ union. You can do better reporting. (D Smith sounds like D Trump with the inaccurate firebombs).”
DeMaurice Smith is the head of the NFL Players Association.
There were 12 tweets from @forargument since August. The most recent was a reply to Michael Beschloss, the presidential historian, who tweeted a photograph of a 1970 newspaper article with the headline, “Agnew Continues Attack on GOP Senator Goodell,” who is the Roger Goodell’s dad.
The @forargument reply: “Goodell courageous & was right in the end. Leadership is hard. Commish is doing same. Give him credit.”
It’s not unheard of for a wife to stand up for her husband, who she believes is under attack. It’s natural, I suppose.
But the way The Wall Street Journal figured all this out is a story of its own.
According to Beaton, “In total, @forargument follows 46 accounts. Between the national outlets, prominent athletes and others (such as Taylor Swift, Ryan Seacrest and a popular account @FemaleTexts), she follows four accounts connected to the high school attended by the Goodells’ twin daughters.”
An NFL spokesman said Mr. Goodell had no idea about the @forargument account. If that’s true, I’m sure it was a phone call Roger Goodell was thrilled to receive at work today:
“Roger, you wife’s on the phone”
“Tell her I’m busy…”
“She says it’s urgent”
“OK. Put her through. (inaudible profanity)”
“You did what?”
“Well just tell the Wall Street Journal it’s not you, for chrissakes.”
“Why the hell would you admit that?!”
“I’m not yelling!”
“No, I’m not.”
“I’m not mad.”
“I’m not. It’s alright.”
“No, you’re right. It was very sweet of you. (pushes the mute button and more inaudible swearing)”
“Well, honey, we’ll talk about it when I get home.”
“OK. Very good.”
“Oh, yes. I love you, too.”
“No, I do.”
“OK. (hangs up)”
(Creates Google Alert: “@realDonaldTrump and Goodell and panty-waist”)
Here’s a link to the full story in The Wall Street Journal. You might need a password to read it, but I’m not giving you mine.
The boys will be all together again in the booth this week. Justin Barker will handle the play-by-play. Dan Vakulskas will provide the color commentary, passing judgment on the playcalling. Brian Vakulskas will be there in the interest of snark.
It’s been a rough week for JB.
For years, there have been fewer people more dominant in the Sioux City media scene than JB. He is responsible for jump-starting the careers of several local radio personalities. But earlier this week, The New York Times revealed multiple allegations of harassment against JB. These allegations all center around JB apparently harassing new personalities to let JB use their headphones, which are known as “cans” in radio lingo.
You see, JB’s cans are old don’t fit quite right anymore, so he is always looking for new cans to hold, if for no other reason than to remember when his cans were new and pristine.
One victim told The Huffington Post that JB trapped her in a vestibule outside the break room at the radio station, grabbed her cans, and began to feel them. He even put them on his head. But the encounter did not last long, as JB quickly discarded the cans into a potted plant that was sitting in the vestibule.
Later in the week, it was revealed JB had been the subject of an undercover investigation by the local police after one female victim, Ana Lee, came forward after JB had, without her consent, touched her cans. The victim made an audio recording of a meeting she had with JB two days later, in which JB appears to confess to groping her cans.
JB: I’m telling you right now, get in here.
Lee: What do we have to do here?
JB: Nothing. I’m going to do my tracking, you sit there and have a Pepsi.
Lee: I don’t drink Pepsi.
JB: Then have a glass of water.
Lee: Can I stay in the news room?
JB: No. You must come here now.
Lee: No …
Lee: No, I don’t want to.
JB: I’m not doing anything with your cans, I promise. Now you’re embarrassing me.
Lee: I know, I don’t want to. I’m sorry, I cannot.
JB: No, come in here.
Lee: No, yesterday was kind of aggressive for me.
JB: I know —
Lee: I need to know a person to let him touch my cans.
JB: I won’t do a thing.
Lee: I don’t want my cans to be touched.
JB: I won’t do a thing, please. I swear I won’t. Just sit with me. Don’t embarrass me in the station. I’m here all the time. Sit with me, I promise —
Lee: I know, but I don’t want to.
JB: Please sit there. Please. One minute, I ask you.
Lee: No, I can’t.
JB: Go to the bathroom.
Lee: Please, I don’t want to do something I don’t want to.
JB: Go to the bathroom — Hey, come here. Listen to me.
Lee: I want to go upstairs and see Cowboy Bob.
JB: I won’t do anything and you’ll never see me again after this. OK? That’s it. If you don’t – if you embarrass me in this radio station where I work —
Lee: I’m not embarrassing you —
JB: Just walk —
Lee: It’s just that I don’t feel comfortable.
JB: Honey, don’t have a fight with me in the studio.
Lee: It’s not nothing, it’s —
JB: Please. I’m not gonna do anything. I swear on my children. Please come in. On everything. I’m a famous guy.
Lee: I’m, I’m feeling very uncomfortable right now.
JB: Please come in. And one minute. And if you wanna leave when the next guy comes in to do tracking, you can go.
Lee: Why yesterday you touch my cans?
JB: Oh, please. I’m sorry. Just come on in. I’m used to that.
Lee: You’re used to that?
JB: Yes, come in.
Lee: No, but I’m not used to that.
JB: I won’t do it again. Come on, sit here. Sit here for a minute, please?
Lee: No, I don’t want to.
JB: If you do this now you will [unintelligible]. Now go. Bye. Never call me again. OK? I’m sorry, nice to have — I promise you I won’t do anything.
Lee: I know, but yesterday was too much for me.
JB: The next guy is coming. I will never do another thing to you. Five minutes. Don’t ruin your friendship with me for five minutes.
Lee: I know — but, it’s kind of, like, it’s too much for me. I can’t.
JB: Please, you’re making a big scene here. Please.
Lee: No, but I wanna leave.
JB: OK, bye. Thank you.
Kickoff is set for 7:30 Friday night, with the Knova’s Carpets Pregame Show at 6:30 on KSCJ.
Pregame interview with West Wolverines head coach Joe Schmitz:
Knova’s Carpets Pregame Show Segment #1:
Knova’s Carpets Pregame Show Segment #2:
Knova’s Carpets Pregame Show Segment #3 with Coach Jack Davis:
Davenport Cleaners Halftime Show interview with Gary Myers, sports columnist from The New York Daily News and author of MY FIRST COACH: Untold Stories of NFL Quarterbacks and Their Dads: