Tidbits - January 10 2019

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TIDBITS by RALPH SHEALY



BOWL FLOP

  Before I tear into Caro-ina’s  bowl performance, I would like to share something I wrote on social media eight years ago. Thanks to TimeHop for reminding me of this:
  “Well. Steve, you failed in your bowl preparation again. Same sold, same old, but at least I didn’t buy tickets, and can  erase my tape. If the success of a team depends on the play of a 19-year-old freshman, then something is wrong in Roosterville. Dabo and Steve, you’ve got a lot of ‘splaining to do.”
  Reading what I wrote back then, helped me feel a little bit better about Carolina’s embarrassing performance in the Belk Bowl against Virginia.
  Back then, Carolina lost to Iowa 31-10. The next year, the Gamecocks fell Connecticut, CONNECTICUT!!!!, 20-7. The following season they flopped to Florida State 26-17.
  By the way, during that time Clemson was 1-3 in bowl games, including a narrow 70-33 decision to West Virginia in the Orange Bowl. I’m sure some  Tiger fans were jumping off the Dabo bandwagon back then, too.
  Steve Spurrier is a hall of fame coach, but during his career at Carolina, the Gamecocks were 5-4 in bowl games. Will Muschamp is now 1-2, but he has taken the Gamecocks to bowl games every year.
  The year’s performance in Charlotte, however, could be the worst in school history.  No previous Gamecock team had ever been shut out in a bowl game.
  The Gamecocks could very well have had the worst bowl performance of 2018, period. Some may say San Diego State’s 27-0 loss to Ohio may rival it, but Ohio only scored 27! Another candidate for the worst performance, Miami, lost to  Wisconsin 35-3, and Mark Richt quit!
  Like Spurrier’s teams in the first four bowl losses of his Gamecock career, the 2018 Gamecocks played like they hadn’t practiced since the Akron game.
  What happened to the offense that piled up over 600 yards against the number 2 team in the country?
  The Gamecocks scored 28 points in the first half against Akron and since that time, they have been shut-out in six straight quarters.
  I hate to put the blame on one player, but quarterback Jake Bentley, after his record breaking 500 yards passing performance against Clemson, returned to average and below average in his next two games.
  Against a mediocre Virginia team, Jake hit 42 percent of his passing attempts.
  He’s a junior, and I hope I’m wrong when I say, he “ain’t gonna” get any better.
  After the embarrassing loss to Connecticut in the bowl that included another  miserable bowl performance by Steven Garcia, number one ranked Alabama came to Williams-Brice the following season and Garcia was brilliant in leading the Gamecocks to a 35-21 win. That is the last time a team from the SEC East beat Alabama.
  Guess who’s coming to Williams-Brice next season? Alabama. And, they will probably be ranked first or second, depending how the Natty came out.
  Could Jake finally have a great game and lead the Gamecocks to a win over  ranked team? Muschamp is 1-11 against ranked teams so far, but next year he will have his first team made up of almost entirely the players he recruited.
  What happened in the bowl? If you saw a Gamecock player interviewed on TV prior to the bowl, then you heard him say the Gamecocks like to play “little teams.” Then, he said “I probably shouldn’t have said that.”
  Well, if his teammates shared that assessment, that “little team” kicked their butts to the tune of 28-0.
  David Cloniger of the “Charleston Post and Courtier” wrote:
  “Gamecocks go 8-5, they had a heck of a year considering all the adversity.
  They went 7-6 and were shut out by a team from the ACC, also known as Clemson and the Pips. Most of the ACC belongs in Region 3-AAA (no offense to the fine teams already in that region).
  It’s only one game, but it was the last game. The one that gets remembered until August.”
  SC Sports Source compared the recruiting rankings of the 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 for Virginia and Carolina. During those years, Virginia ranked 50th. 63rd, 58th and 59th, while Carolina ranked 20th, 25th, 21st and 18th.
  Their comment was “Muschamp is not getting it done as head coach.”
  It’s too early for that.
  It is true, though, the last game is the one that will be remembered until August, but half the bowl teams are in that boat.
 How about Georgia? The team that pundits agreed was one of the top four teams in the country, lost to 9-3 Texas.
  The fact is the only game that means anything is the National Championship game Monday night.
  And, except for the National Championship winner, we can all “Wait till next year!”

TOO SMART

  I’ve had a Pebble smart-watch for several years.
  I like it, but I heard that Pebble was no longer in business. So, I Googled it. Sure enough, no more Pebble Watch Company.
  If the watch goes, I’m out of luck, and would have to buy an expensive replacement.
  I’ve always wanted an Apple watch, since I own an iPhone and an iPad. When I saw one online for $50 off from Best Buy, I decided to give myself one for Christmas.
  It’s the smallest watch face they make, but it’s the same size as my Pebble.
  Pebble always touted its watch as good or better than the Apple.
  Now, that I have both, I agree on one point. The Pebble could go three days before needing charging. You have to charge the Apple every day.
  The Apple graphics are much better, however.
  Both watches tout good health, and keep up with steps walked, stairs climbed, etc.
  The Pebble also kept up with sleep patterns, but the Apple watch doesn’t, because you can’t keep up with sleep while you’re getting charged.
  The Apple also keeps up with sitting on your butt. I’ll get a message that says, “Time to stand up and move around for at least a minute.”
  I do what it tells me.
  On Facebook, I shared a message I got that said I had not gotten as much exercise today as I got the day before.
  My response was my smartwatch is not smart enough to know it has been raining for 40 days and 40 nights, and my backyard was like walking on a water bed.
  The watch also has a breathing app that has you to inhale and exhale to a little thing that goes from big to small. I do what it says. I don’t want to get criticized again.
  I walked around the pond Sunday afternoon, and my watch congratulated me!
  With adult gifts, you know what you’re giving, but some toys will surprise you, as I found out the hard way.
  I gave my great-niece Skylar Coleman a talking Minion for her birthday. I gave it to her on Christmas Eve.
  Christmas Day, I got a text from Skylar’s mother Erin that said, “Did you know the Minion you gave Sky toots?  She keeps pushing the button and laughing her head off.”
  Oh, great, I gave a five-year-old a toy that makes offensive body noises.
  The next day, Erin let me know Skylar was still pushing the button and laughing. I hope they didn’t have any company visiting!
  I have six family members who have birthdays in December and the first week in January. Five of them are children, and from now own, I’m reading the box!

MEMORIES

  When Mrs. Dorothy Shealy Phillips died last week, I immediately reverted to my childhood.
  Mrs. Dot was one of my Den mothers when I was a Cub Scout, along with my mother and Mildred Long.
  When I went to her visitation last Sunday afternoon, I told her son Van Shealy, I remembered us memorizing the Morse Code at his house.
  A few minutes later, Lewis Matthews, another one of the Morse Coders walked in.
  That was nearly 60 years ago, but we still remembered.
  Funny how things stick out in your memory. Another  Den mother, Betty Wheeler, got all the Cub Dens together and taught us the song, “Let Me Call You Sweetheart.”
  We then had to sing that to our mothers at a Valentine’s Day gathering. I still know the words.
  No matter where I saw her the rest of her life, Mrs. Dot, was still my Den mother, just as Mrs. Mildred and Mrs. Betty were. They made an impression and I appreciated what they meant to my life.
  Nancy Ann Coleman Wooten had been my friend for well over 50 years.
  She was two years younger, but was in that gap of grades, two behind you and two in front of you,  that you are close to.
  Nancy Ann had a great personality and loved to laugh.
  She was a wonderful writer, and spent much of her career working for newspapers and magazines. I did not know she had also earned a law degree until I read her obituary.
  A law degree is natural, since her father is the legendary attorney, Billy Coleman, who turned 103 on the day Nancy Ann was buried.
  Her mother, Lula, taught me French at Saluda High School. Like “Let Me Call You Sweetheart,” I can still recite some passages we had to memorize.
  Nancy Ann was diagnosed with cancer a few years ago, and after treatment, appeared to beat it, but it came back and this time there was nothing more that could be done.
  I saw her sister Julia Johnson a few days before Christmas. She said the last time Nancy Ann was sent home from the hospital she was given a week to ten days to live.
  I told her I had heard that, but then saw Nancy Ann was liking pictures and I posted on Facebook, and she was posting pictures herself.
  Julia said Nance was even going to host the family Christmas gathering. She would not give up.
  A few days after Christmas,, however, cancer won.
  Nancy Ann was well loved by everyone who knew her. She will be greatly missed.
 
 
 
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