cut off my ears like Van Gogh
So we won. Wasn't the prettiest victory, but we won. In a year like this, I'll gladly take it. But one thing became painfully obvious during yesterday's game-- the hardest thing to deal with this year is not that the streak is over. It's not that the 8th loss is looming like that 'men's health exam' I'll soon be needing for the first time in my life. It's not that on New Year's Day I'll have to be sitting at some family member's house wishing it was ME yelling at my team for sucking it up in beautiful weather. It's not even Stevie Brown. Clearly, the worst part about this 2-7, and now 3-7 season is...
Pam Ward. Or as I'll refer to hereafter as PAM FREAKIN' WARD.
Yes, the worst part about being this bad is that PAM FREAKIN' WARD calls your game. I'm not positive here,
but from what I can remember not since 2005 have we had to endure the
utter pain and humiliation of having this CLUELESS talking zombie
rattle off for approximately four quarters. She is SOOO bad it makes
me want to write Paul Maguire a letter and invite him back to the Big
House!! It's like they took some homeless guy off the street in downtown Cairo, gave him a microphone and a bad photocopy of the 1996 Sega Madden instruction book and put him on national TV! You can say what you want about breaking down gender barriers, but for the love of American football, I can throw my grandmother in front of the TV and she'll at least have something to say for the next three hours! Pam Ward is like third rate dental work-- when you can't get anything else you're forced to take her or suffer. And dammit we love our Wolverines, so we swallowed our pride and took what ESPN forced upon us. I mean really, where do we start?
1. How many times does the average
TV viewer need to be told WHAT COLORS THE TEAMS ARE WEARING??? If, by
the fourth quarter you don't realize that the Wolverines are wearing
white and the Gophers are wearing maroon, then you probably want to
look into specialized TV broadcasting for the visually impaired.....
How many times did we need to hear about the 'HOOK and LATERAL' play
that Purdue used to ice the game last week? Well, the first six or
seven would have been fine for me, but PAM FREAKIN' WARD made sure to point it out at least 45 to 48 times depending on whether or not you had turned down the TV volume to single digit levels by the fourth quarter.
3. It's a shame Eric Decker couldn't play (hats off to Trent, of course) after paid her so much money to SAY THE GUY'S NAME EVERY SIX SECONDS for THREE HOURS. I think there were more overall shots of Decker's sunflower seed exploits than actual field-of-play coverage, and I'm sure the camera men were just following the lead of PAM FREAKIN' WARD.
4. You would think that if someone were going to put you in front of a national TV audience, you'd at least be willing to do a little homework on the teams so you don't come off like a total insult to the game. Especially if you're trying to justify the whole gender barrier/bias thing. PAM FREAKIN' WARD must have been too busy on Friday watching Days of Our Lives or the WNBA to actually take a glance at our roster. I think I heard her call Calvin Bell's name a few times here and there. Tackle by David Harris. Touchdown run by Marquise Walker. Of course I'm just making these up, but she deserves it. Try announcing Martavious... try learning that McGuffie is white and on the sideline. Sheesh.
5. Please, could you spend a little more time describing the action ON THE FIELD than READING THE SCOREBOARD?? If I wanted to hear the score every 2nd down, I'd just look up to the top of the screen. All she really does is rattle off stats and numbers that are ALREADY AVAILABLE to the viewer. And why??? Because she obviously, and regrettably, has NOTHING TO ADD. NOTHING TO OFFER. Nothing about when she was quarterback at Purdue in 1961. Nothing about when she was coach at Jersey City State. Nothing even remotely to offer other than what the above-average football watching American can gather on his or her own. Nothing.
So we're stuck with this... at least until we start winning big and Brad Nessler and the rest start getting sent back to Ann Arbor. Hell, I'll even be satisfied with CHRIS FREAKIN' SPIELMAN at this point. One thing I kept thinking about on Saturday-- could you imagine what it's like to be stuck with this poop all the time??? How utterly toxic it must be for Northwestern fans to be told that their team is wearing purple 376 times a week?? How maniacally unfair it must be for Hoosier fans to be told it is 3rd and 11 because the line of scrimmage is eleven yards up the field?? Damn, at that point bring on the Big 10 network!
Long story short-- let's hope our boys turn it around next year, if only for more adequate playcalling!!!! I mean REALLY, ESPN--
AMERICA DESERVES BETTER THAN PAM FREAKIN' WARD.
That is all. God Bless America. GO BLUE.