RIP MAGGIE DIXON: Ms. Dixon, the coach of Army's women's basketball team, died of heart arrhythmia today. She was just 28.
She took over at virtually the last minute for Army this year, and led them to their first NCAA tournament appearance [a loss to Tennessee in the first round]. All of the sudden, she was a coach on the rise in the women's game. Litterally out of the blue, this happens.
So, all you 20 and 30 somethings.....remember to keep up with your doctor's appointments and such. If it wasn't for my wife, something like this could've happened to me. I went thru all this heart stuff two years ago when I was 28.....and just because everyone in the waiting room is a lot older than you....don't think that you are at any less of a risk. Remember guys like Hank Gathers and Reggie Lewis, athletes at the top of their games, fell to the same things.
Her brother, Jamie Dixon, is the men's basketball coach at Pitt.
MIKE DAVIS TO UAB: This is a good move for both Davis and UAB. For Davis, it is a program that isn't in such big headlights as Indiana. It is a southern school, in his home state of Alabama, which he was excellent at recruiting from already. The program is already solid and, in the Memphis-led Conference USA, could take that torch as being the other elite program to bloom in the reconfigured conference.
For UAB, they get a firey coach who has a big name already coming in....and who should be able to recruit well there.
ERIC GAGNE TO HAVE SURGERY: So much for 2006.
REDSKINS NEED TO STOP RIDING THINGS IN THE OFFSEASON: Center Casey Rabach is now in a cast after an accident he had on an ATV. He should be cool when camp starts....but still, c'mon! Skins fans can harken back to the snowmobile accident that Doug Williams had in an offseason that essentially closed out his career.
THE NETS ARE DANGEROUS: I said it before...and it is proving true. The Nets will be a pest for the "likely" Pistons-Heat showdown for the Eastern Conference Championship. New Jersey currently is on a 14-game winning streak and has clinched the Atlantic Division already. They possess one of greatest point guards [Jason Kidd], one of the best scorers [Vince Carter] and one of the better slashing forwards [Richard Jefferson] in the NBA. Also, while their frontline isn't as powerful as Miami's or Detroit's....they are young and improving. Their bench isn't superb, but experienced.
HOW BOUT THAT CENTRAL DIVISION: Using the "if the playoffs ended today" trick.....all five of the NBA's Central Division teams would be in the playoffs. All five. Detroit has wrapped up everything in the East; Cleveland has clinched a berth; and Milwaukee, Indiana and Chicago are battling Philly for the final three spots. And, though I was just hyping the Nets, they'd be the lone Atlantic team in the playoffs as of right now.
HOOKING NBC UP: The NFL did a lot of favors it didn't do ABC in the final year of Monday Night Football for NBC. The Peacock Network gets Sunday Night games this year with the MNF flava. And they got some good games. It opens with the defending champion Steelers hosting the Dolphins in the annual "Thursday opener". Then on Sunday Night, they get MANNING BOWL I as Peyton's Colts visting Eli's Giants. Week 2? Oh, just the Redskins-Cowboys. Week 3? How 'bout the Broncos-Patriots, a rematch of their controversial playoff game. Week 4? Seattle-Chicago, the two NFC teams with the best records last year. Week 5? Steelers-Chargers...a rematch of last year's thrilling MNF game. Week 6? Raiders-Broncos. Week 8? A budding Cowboys-Panthers tift [there is no Week 7 Sunday nighter due to the World Series]. Week 9? Colts-Patriots, nuff said. Then the rest of the season will be hand picked from games the NFL wants to move and CBS and Fox didn't protect.