13) ESPN News started a new show Monday, from 6-7pm: Daily Wager. It looks pretty good, an information-driven program that follows gambling-related and daily fantasy stuff.
12) Phoenix Suns closed as a 17-point underdog against Warriors Sunday night, then won. It is the largest upset in an NBA game since March 6, 2016 when the Lakers upset Golden State as a 17.5-point underdog.
11) Detroit Tigers’ 1B Miguel Cabrera pulled the hidden ball trick on a runner Monday. What do you say to a major leaguer who falls for that?
10) Since 2009, when one team beats another twice during the regular season and then meets them again in a conference tournament, they complete the 3-game sweep 72% of the time.
9) Toronto Blue Jays used a 4-man outfield against Bryce Harper over the weekend, with no third baseman; will that be a trend this season? Turns out it didn’t matter where the fielders were, since they walked Harper both times he came to bat.
Tampa Bay used the 4-man outfield against Harper on Monday, too.
8) After trading Antonio Brown over the weekend, Steelers have a cap hit of $21M for his contract this year, which isn’t good.
Over the last seven years, of the 14 NFL teams that had a WR with a cap hit of $15M+, only one of those 14 teams made the playoffs, the 2016 Falcons, and they at least had Julio Jones on their team that year. Brown is a huge cap hit, and he’s playing for Oakland.
7) Detroit Lions signed four players Monday, three of whom are ex-Patriots. Problem is, none of them is Tom Brady, so not sure how much they’ll help.
6) OT Trent Brown bolted New England and will sign a four-year, $66M contract that includes $36.75M in guarantees with the Raiders, making him highest paid OL in NFL history.
5) Landon Collins signs with the Redskins, gets $84M for six years, $45M of it guaranteed.
4) Nick Foles get $88M to QB the Jaguars for four years.
3) College basketball teams that have fired their coach:
— Fairfield, Niagara in the MAAC
— Southern Illinois
— SIU-Edwardsville, Tennessee Tech in the OVC
— Troy State
— Kennesaw State, Stetson in the A-Sun
— Cal Poly
— Temple (technically he is retiring, but they forced him out)
Bottom line on coaches getting fired is this: Bracket Week and the NCAA tournament are great fun for us, but if you’re a coach and you don’t make the NCAA’s, your job is in real jeopardy.
2) Duke’s Marques Bolden, averaging 19.5 mpg, is out for the ACC tournament.
1) FOX is making a big deal about signing Urban Meyer to its college football coverage, but Meyer has been on TV before, and he wasn’t good. Meyer was humorless doing games on ESPN, I almost felt bad for the guy. Not sure how coaching at Ohio State changed any of that.