Posted on: January 12, 2009 5:29 pm

Thank You Steelers

1. The divisional rounds of the playoffs have ended and we can all breathe a sigh of relief. It's bad enough that a 9-7 team is hosting the NFC Title Game. How ugly would it have been if the 8-8 Chargers would have been hosting the AFC Championship Game? Fortunately, that's not going to happen. The Steelers will be at home this weekend against the Ravens in one of those great clashes between these two that should be as brutal as football was meant to be. You remember. Back from the days when football players were football players and not dancers. And I know of at least one good reason to cheer for the Steelers. A Pittsburgh Super Bowl win would give the Steel City 6 Super Bowl rings and shut Cowboy fans up about their "5 rings ain't that sweet as honey" annoying garbage!

2. Nevertheless, The Toxic One is jumping on the Philadelphia Eagles bandwagon! That's right! Go Eagles! First off, the Eagles are following the path of the 2005 Steelers as well as the 2007 Giants on their quest to be the champs. Remember, in 2005, the Steelers sat at 6-6 and looked all but dead before going on their run. Same for the 2007 Giants, who were 7-5 and head fans and the media calling for the heads of Tom Coughlin and Eli Manning. The 2008 Eagles were, at one point, 6-5-1, had just tied the Bengals and the City of Brotherly Love wanted Andy Reid and Donovan McNabb tossed out of town. But the Eagles have gone on their run, simulating the 2005 Steelers and 2007 Giants. Both the 2005 Steelers and 2007 Giants had to win three straight road games to get to the Super Bowl. The Eagles will have to do that as well as they head to Arizona this weekend for the NFC Championship Game. Also, the 2005 Steelers and 2007 Giants had to win on the road in the playoffs against the team that won their division. The Steelers beat the Bengals in Cincinatti in 2005 and the Giants beat the Cowboys in Texas in 2007. Well, the Eagles went to Giants' Stadium and knocked off the Giants, matching that similarity as well. The NFL is a trendy league and the Eagles are following the trends of a couple of recent Super Bowl winners as they are one win away from getting to the Super Bowl themselves. The Toxic One has decided that he not only wants the Eagles to win the Super Bowl, but he also hopes Donovan McNabb is named the Super Bowl MVP. What a kick to the testicles of one Terrell Owens would that be!

3. Now as for that so-called unbeatable team. No, not the Giants or the Titans or anyone else. I am talking about the North Carolina Tar Heels. This was supposed to be the team that threatens to go unbeaten on their way to winning the national championship. Well, 2 games into the ACC season, the unbeatable Tar Heels are 0-2 in conference play. Undefeated? The ACC has a pair of those teams but they aren't the usual suspects. Right now, that battle is between Clemson and Wake Forest! Not Duke and North Carolina. However, we all know how basketball works and I am sure that the Tar Heels and Duke will start getting back to their dominant selves. Just as soon as the referees remember they are Duke and North Carolina and the calls start going their way again.
Posted on: September 27, 2008 9:25 am

We're Not On Life Support

When I first began to watch sports, the NBA was a couple years away from obtaining Magic Johnson and Larry Bird. And the league was on life support. I can clearly remember the NBA Finals Game 6, which would be the deciding game, between the Lakers with Magic Johnson and the 76ers with Dr J being telecast on tape delay. We knew who had won before the game ever began on television.

But things changed. The NBA grew as fans piled upon the Bird and Magic bandwagons. But Bird and Magic did not last forever and neither the Lakers nor Celtics won the Finals in the 90s. But the NBA did not collapse. No. In fact, it got even more popular as everyone piled upon the Michael Jordan bandwagon and off to the races they went.

But Jordan didn't last forever either. And the NBA had to deal with the Jerry and Jerry dissection of the Bulls and a lockout at the same time. If anything could have killed the NBA, that would have been it. But, the NBA just hitched its wagons to Shaq and Kobe and kept on rolling. Shag and Kobe had a nasty divorce that had such backstage drama that it could have made pro wrestling proud but the NBA has marched on as the Lakers and Celtics met in the last finals and the whole thing went full circle.

Now, you ask yourself, why the history lesson in the NBA? Because we have these people whom believe that if the current bandwagon isn't at the top of the world in sports, the sport would die. People like Colin Cowherd from ESPN Radio. He thinks that MLB needs the Yankees in the playoffs. Or the NBA needs the Lakers in the Finals. The NFL needs the Cowboys and Patriots in the Super Bowl.

Guess what folks. Baseball is going to survive just fine with the Yankees sitting at home and watcging on television. The NFL? Oh please. There have been so many bandwagons come and go in my lifetime and the NFL is still the most popular sport in America. From the Steelers and Cowboys in the 70s, to the 49ers in the 80s, to the Cowboys in the early 90s, then to Brett Favre, then to John Elway, then even the Rams got into the act with the Greatest Show on Turf. And, when the Patriots eventually tumble back to the bottom...and they will. All teams in the NFL eventually hit the skids and dive back to the bottom. When that happens, the NFL will be just fine because someone else will hop up and take their place.

That even goes for college football. College football isn't on life support just because USC lost to Oregon State Thursday. Even golf is surviving without Tiger Woods.

So, don't worry about the health of your sport just because the current bandwagon team has suddenly fallen on hard times. There will be plenty of other bandwagons for people like the Colin Cowherd's of this world to climb upon and then claim that their sport has to have that team on top forever and ever for it to survive.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com