Chicago seeks relief without Bulls

By The Columbia Chronicle

Just when Bears fans were ready to ship Dave Wannstedt out of town and build around their top draft pick in 1999, the team found a way to win three ugly games and throw a wrench into the plans. It started with a come-from- behind victory against the inconsistent Detroit Lions, a game which featured six Chicago turnovers. They then traveled to Arizona and could never get anything going as they fell in embarrassing fashion to the Cardinals. Then the injury plagued Dallas Cowboys came to town. Jason Garrett started in place of Troy Aikman and completed only one first down pass as the Bears mediocre offense chalked up the 13-12 win. Next, the Bears went to Tennessee and played a talented but mindless Oiler team. The Bears were able to capitalize on an Oiler mistake and a missed field goal. They win 23-20 and improve to 3-5.

Some fans may be happy with this minute achievement. They won three games against three less-than-average teams, and we are supposed to believe in this team and think that they will make a productive season out of all this. The Bears are in the weakest part of their schedule and will soon have to face the Central Division foes, arguably the toughest teams in the NFL. With the current streak, the Bears have gone from the NFL’s worst to middle of the pack, which means no playoffs. More importantly it means they slide in the draft pick position and lose the opportunity to gain a much needed quarterback such as Tim Couch. If not a quarterback then a player who could come in and fill an important role right away. Also the potential of Dave Wannstedt maintaining his job increases. We all know how much Mike McCaskey loves him and will use anything, even a ludicrous winning streak like this, to show the positives and possibilities of his favorite pet coach Wanny.

So all this really means for Bears fans is that years of mediocrity are apparent. There is some good young good talent with such players as Curtis Enis and Tony Parrish, however their are not enough impact players for this team to be competing with the competitive Central division. I don’t want to get fans upset again, but the Bears have a long road to walk until they are anywhere near the ‘85 team.

According to the Daily Herald, the White Sox are discussing a trade that would send Frank Thomas to the Colorado Rockies for Todd Helton and Darryl Kyle. The trade is intriguing and would help the Sox in two ways. First, it would give them a good defensive first baseman and a powerful left handed bat. Second, it would give the Sox that veteran pitcher that they desperately need. Albert Belle has thirty days to find a team to pay him moreuld have guaranteed with the Sox. Teams should be interested, especially since Mike Piazza was given a seven-year, 91 million dollar deal with the Mets. I really think the Sox are hoping that a team takes him off their hands because in doing so it would free up some major money to test the free agent market. More so, it would open up left field for a younger hitter with outstanding potential, Jeff Abbott. Robin Ventura’s agent supposedly has four teams interested in his client. If this is true and Robin finds a team willing to take a chance on a third baseman who has not had an impressive offensive season since his foot injury, the Sox will find themselves without anybody occupying the hot corner. The minor leagues offer little hope; other possibilities include free agents Dean Palmer, Scott Brosius, and Ken Caminiti.

A few weeks back I attended DePaul’s Midnight Madness, the official beginning of college basketball.

There is a lot of excitement about head coach Pat Kennedy’s recruiting class and rightfully so. Bobby Simmons and Lance Williams are two of the big name recruits who will most likely start as freshmen. With a young nucleus it may be hard to adapt to the college game, but give them a couple of years to adapt. If they stay, this group could bring excitement back into college basketball in Chicago.

The Blackhawks are off to an average start, but the team really didn’t do much to improve itself during the off-season. They did however bring in Dirk Graham, the former Hawks captain who commands immediate respect in the lockeroom. The Hawks need scoring and made a later season attempt to get it. I knew they would never get Brett Hull, but why Doug Gilmour and Paul Coffey. If this was 1988 I could understand why but it’s 1998 and makes little sense. Look for the Hawks to be a couple of games over the .500 mark through the season, get the seventh or eighth playoff spot and get knocked out early.

I just hope Michael and Scottie really like Tim Floyd.