Sports Gumbo Recipe #9
Tulane and UNO keep rolling
I’ve said it a million times. I just love me some New Orleans winter. Especially one in which it was cold for what, a weekend? The days are beautiful and the nights get just crisp enough to let you know that it is probably still quite cold in Minneapolis and the Sheboygans of America. As our temperatures rise the season begins to change. No, I’m not talking winter to spring, I’m talking gumbo to crawfish. Anyway, let’s mix it up and throw it in the pot, shall we?
Speaking of new seasons, the Tulane Green Wave seem to be on the verge of one in that they seem primed to have their most successful season under Coach Travis Jewett and make a real run at the NCAA regionals. Hope is bubbling up in Uptown as the team’s starting pitching staff is creating new and old believers (re-believers?) alike.
The story of the year continues to be the success of starting pitcher Braden Olthoff, who put in another dazzling performance over the weekend against Southern. Olthoff went seven scoreless innings and struck out 13. The junior is now 4-0 with a laughably amazing 0.32 ERA. In 28 innings he’s only given up 12 hits and three walks against 47 strikeouts. If this keeps up, the national press is going to be hounding Turchin with a quickness.
Like I said, crawfish are crawling their way out of the Gulf and towards your plate. Although it’s not peak season I can tell you the crawfish have gone up a level between the past two weekends. You don’t have to worry about feeling bad over beating up the tiny little dudes anymore.
If you’re a podcast sort of human and dig college baseball you should check out 11point7.com. The guys behind it are absolutely legit and not a bad listen. Evidently they are putting out their own mid-major Top 25, which is cool as you know I am a big fan of the small guy and, in this case, the Southland Conference. Their last Top 25 actually had Incarnate Word at #23 so I had to call them out on Twitter, and kindly remind them, that no team in the Southland has had as a successful pre-conference run as the UNO Privateers. The men on the Lakefront own a victory over Tulane and, even more impressive, a series win over UConn. If you’re the Googling sort you can look up most of the teams in that Top 25 and see that they don’t have as nice of a resume as the Privateers. As always, Mark Patrick Spencer is a man of the people.
I hope you got your rest this weekend because everyone knows that St. Patty’s Day does not exist in New Orleans. It’s called St. Patty’s Week. We’ll be celebrating once again at my homey Boilin’ Bill’s house for the parade. I hope you have a blast too.
Am I really going to start watching the New Orleans Pelicans? Possibly. I must say that March Madness is here so my brain does skew to the hoops and the Pelicans are so close to getting into the NBA playoffs. The handful of games I have watched so far have been solid on drama. It would just be sweet to see them win some of these nail-biters they have played in recently.
The Pelicans trail the Sacramento Kings and, more importantly, the Memphis Grizzlies in their quest to get the eight seed in the Western Conference playoffs. Luckily, the Pels play the Kings head-to-head this Wednesday. After that, the most important stretch of the remainder of the season will begin on March 21, when over the course of four days, the Pelicans play the Kings once and the Grizzlies twice. Must see TV.
Sure this weekend was against an overmatched Southern team but you have no reason to believe this Tulane starting pitching staff can’t go against the best of the best. I’m not talking about East Carolina either. I’m talking about the SEC.
We hit Clesi’s Restaurant this week. It’s a restaurant so you know they’re charging way too much for crawfish but when you have the itch you just have to scratch it, right? Seither’s Seafood in Harahan remains my favorite restaurant for crawfish. With that said, who are we kidding, there’s nothing better than just having a few beers watching the pot and then putting it all on the table for a feast with your friends.
I’m trying to watch the XFL but it seems like every game I watch has a quarterback that throws for less than 100 yards and somehow the team still wins. Either way, it’s still cool to see the league have some moderate success. Back in the day, the USFL had two good seasons in it and shook the NFL up a bit. After the USFL folded, the NFL adopted USFL rules like the two-point conversion and instant replay. As everyone knows, the graying NFL should be shaken up on a regular basis.
In case you think the USFL were a bunch of hacks, the New Orleans Saints got Bobby Hebert, Sam Mills and Vaughn Johnson from the league. Legends.
An early Happy St. Patty’s to you my friends! The world is your Uber. Please don’t drink and drive.