I thought this was going to finally be the NFL offseason without the Brett Favre diva act, the will-he-won't-he melodrama of just how Citizen Brett will spend the following autumn. He made the announcement. Done deal. He was going to spend this fall and all the falls to come riding his tractor around in Mississippi. Great!
The peace and quiet lasted five weeks.
There he was Tuesday on the Web site of his hometown paper, the Biloxi Sun-Herald, speculating about a possible return.
"It would be hard to pass up, I guess," he told reporter Al Jones, who was working with Favre on the foreword for a book the paper is producing about the local star. Jones had asked him what he'd do should the Green Bay Packers call during the season and ask him to take over because of injuries. "But three months from now, say that presents itself, I may say, you know what, I'm so glad I made that decision."
Yes, you may say that, Brett, but until that moment: Shut up! Shut up shut up shut up! Shut! Up!
The paper referenced the speculation that's filled airwaves and column inches since Favre's March 4 retirement that he wouldn't stay retired, that he'd feel the old football urge over the summer and be there in training camp just like always.
"Favre has remained largely silent," the Sun-Herald wrote, "preferring to let others debate the issue of his retirement."
Yeah, for 35 whole days.
Look, I love me some Brett Favre, really I do. I have to. It's in the union contract for sportswriters. And I get that he was asked the question.
But after years of clogging up the spring and summer sports news with his annoying Hamlet routine, he owed it to us all to say, "I'm retired, and that's that."
I applaud the openness. I appreciate the honesty. But at long last, sir, please shut up and go ride your tractor. If you decide to come back at some point, trust me, we won't miss it. Your name will make the papers.
In the meantime, it shouldn't. You might want to start getting used to that.
"Non-expert" wins Pool o' Experts [PERMALINK]
Cohen -- erroneously called a former Pool o' Experts champion in an earlier column -- had declared himself "not much of an 'expert' these days" upon turning in his bracket because over the last year he'd focused his attention on political work rather than writing about hoops for Fox Sports.
But he was one of only two experts, or at least two panelists, to have Kansas winning -- yours truly was the other -- and he was the only one who correctly identified Kansas and Memphis as the Championship Game contestants.
Cohen would have finished in a first-place tie with the NCAA Selection Committee had Memphis won Monday. The committee, which did a unanimously praised job of seeding this year, finished second, its best showing. This column also turned in its best finish, third, thanks mostly to the lucky guess of Kansas. The Jayhawks were the only team I correctly picked for the Final Four.
You, the masses, the only two-time champion in Pool o' Experts history, took a beating in the semifinals and fell to sixth.
And I'm not able to go to my usual gambit of making fun of all the experts for not doing significantly better than a little kid with a coin. Unfortunately, my son, Buster, the coin-flippinest 5-year-old west of the Alamo, was betrayed by his quarter this year and ended up about as far back as you'd expect a 5-year-old to end up.
Cohen's prize is dinner at my house, home cooking or actual house neither implied nor guaranteed. Here are the final standings:
|1. Yoni Cohen, YoCoHoops.com||1,260|
|2. NCAA Selection Committee||1,100|
|3. King Kaufman, Salon||1,010|
|4. Jonah Keri, ESPN/N.Y. Sun||1,000|
|5.Grant Wahl, Sports Illustrated||990|
|6. CBS SportsLine users||980|
|7. Stewart Mandel, Sports Illustrated||950|
|8. Tony Kornheiser, Washington Post||940|
|9. Seth Davis, CBS/S.I.||900|
|10. Luke Winn, Sports Illustrated||860|
|11. Gregg Doyel, CBS SportsLine||800|
|12. Barack Obama, D-Ill.||780|
|13. Michael Wilbon, Washington Post||720|
|14. John McCain, R-Ariz.||710|
|15. Buster, Coinflip 4 Kids||390|
Here is a list of the annual winners:
2003 Tony Mejia, CBS SportsLine
2004 Tim Brando, Sporting News/CBS
2005 CBS SportsLine users
2006 Stewart Mandel, Sports Illustrated
2007 CBS SportsLine users
2008 Yoni Cohen, YoCoHoops.com
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