Saturday, May 08, 2010
Sports columnist Aaron McFarling: Some questions, answers to ponder
- Turns out Danica really is a driver
- Bowling trouble just the first sign
- NASCAR hopes to recapture its pre-recession popularity
- Super Bowl matchup providing all the hype
Time for another of edition of Q&A-Mac, where I make up questions and answer them. AQA! stands for "Actual Question Alert" and means somebody really asked it. Which means Annie's Mailbox must have been over its size limit.
Q: Virginia Tech point guard Malcolm Delaney has until 5 p.m. today to withdraw his name from the NBA Draft if he wants to be eligible for his senior season. Does he stay or go?
A: I think he stays. Delaney's been doing a lot of tweeting, indicating that he's getting frustrated with all the questions. But the fact that he's waiting until the deadline tells me he likes the attention, savors being appreciated and enjoys getting begged to stay by Tech people. We all would. Ultimately, though, he needs another year to get stronger and improve his jump-shooting accuracy. And I think he knows that.
Q: UVa self-reported a secondary NCAA violation after coach Mike London posted a message on the Facebook wall of a high school recruit. Should Wahoo fans worry about this?
A: No. They should be thrilled. Committing a secondary NCAA violation is like stealing signs in baseball; you're not supposed to do it, but A) it shows you're trying to win, and B) there aren't any major consequences if you get caught. Ask Lane Kiffin, who committed a gazillion secondary violations at Tennessee, and the only result was a bunch of sizzling recruits winding up in Knoxville.
Q: Did Al Groh ever post on anybody's Facebook wall?
A: I doubt it. Unless he had poetry to share.
Q: How about Frank Beamer?
A: Even less likely. True story: We once had an employee in the sports department who asked this famous question: "What is the Web address for ESPN.com?" I'm guessing Beamer's Internet acuity is similar to that.
Q: So what is the Web address for ESPN.com?
A: Very funny.
Q: Who wins the NASCAR race tonight at Darlington?
A: Jeff Gordon. He's got seven career victories there and an average finish of 11.3. His team has been really strong so far this season, and the terrible luck can't last. His run to the Sprint Cup title starts tonight.
Q: After the tragic death of Yeardley Love, both UVa lacrosse teams have decided to continue their seasons in next week's NCAA tournament. Is this the right thing to do?
A: Yes. But it's not as easy an answer as it seems. I'm reminded of what Tech AD Jim Weaver told me in 2007, when he decided the Hokies would play their baseball game the same week of the campus shootings: There's no manual for this sort of thing. "There's nothing that says it ought to be two days, three days, four days, 10 days," Weaver said. "You've just got to do what you think is right." Despite the overwhelming scrutiny both teams will face, Craig Littlepage is doing what he thinks is right. And I respect that.
Q: Starting in 2011, Group A football teams won't automatically qualify for the playoffs by winning their districts, as the VHSL Rating Scale will become the sole determinant of bids. Fair or unfair?
A: Fair. With a whopping 64 teams invited to the postseason out of Group A, I can't imagine how this new rule ever becomes an issue. Unless they invent a league full of also-rans and call it the Butt Hollow Bottomfeeders District or something.
AQA! (from Roanoke Times sportswriter Mark Berman): When will Q&A-Mac actually get, you know, interesting?
A: Soon, I hope. But no guarantees. We'll give it another shot next week!
Read Aaron McFarling's Daily Sports Briefing on the Press Box blog weekday mornings at http://blogs.roanoke.com/rtblogs/pressbox/