Practice no comparison to the games

By: Dudley E. Dawson
Published: Thursday, August 23, 2018
Pulaski Academy tight end Hudson Henry (left) looks to avoid McClellan defender Tyrse Lair (25) during a game Friday, Oct. 27, 2017, in Little Rock.
Photo by Jimmy Jones
Pulaski Academy tight end Hudson Henry (left) looks to avoid McClellan defender Tyrse Lair (25) during a game Friday, Oct. 27, 2017, in Little Rock.

There are 12 months in a year, but there is no doubt which one is my least favorite.

That would be August, even if my birthday arrives at the end of the month and this year comes with the bonus I'll now getting into movies half price since I'm turning 55.

It's hot, there's no more vacation time to fit in, there's not a lot of original programming on television, I've watched about everything on Netflix and Hulu and most disappointingly, at least for the first 20 or so days, there are no "real" football games.

Sure you have high school and college scrimmages and NFL preseason games, but mostly its just practice, practice and more practice.

I know there are some people who love that. I have not since I last walked off a high school field in 1981. I had a helmet in one hand and an arm around the homecoming queen named Petra. Eventually, she would become my wife on the same field 30 years later.

Former NBA All-Star Allen Iverson and I agree on one thing that he covered in his famous "practice" rant back on May 7, 2002.

"I know it's important, I honestly do but we're talking about practice," Iverson said at a press conference. "We're talking about practice, man. We're talking about practice. We're talking about practice. We're not talking about the game. We're talking about practice."

At least this week brings some real football games of interest starting off with a pair of Razorback recruits coming to Northwest Arkansas to start their seasons.

Razorback defensive end pledge Zach Williams (6-4, 225), the son of former Arkansas linebacker Rickey Williams, will lead Joe T. Robinson as it visits Springdale High at 7 p.m. today.

Pulaski Academy's Hudson Henry (6-5, 225), the nation's top tight end and brother of former Razorback and current NFL tight end Hunter Henry and current Arkansas linebacker Hayden Henry, will be featured Friday night as the Bruins play at Springdale Har-Ber.

While there are only four Saturday games on the college football schedule this weekend on what's now called Week Zero, well, that's at least four more than last Saturday.

The one of most interest to Razorback fans should be Hawaii at Colorado State, a 6:30 p.m. game that will be televised by the CBS Sports Network.

That's not the channel which brings us Criminal Minds and 48 Hours, but the one that specializes in sports such as The World's Strongest Man contest and the F1 Powerboat Championship when football and basketball aren't available.

Colorado State is Arkansas' second opponent of the season on Sept. 8, its first road game and should be an early season test now that the Rams have former Washington quarterback and one-time Vanderbilt commit K.J. Carta-Samuels under center.

Carta-Samuels (6-2, 221) is a graduate transfer who chose Colorado State over UCLA when Rams starter Collin Hill tore his ACL in the spring. He appeared in 25 games for Washington with one start back in 2015. He completed 27 of 47 passes for 310 yards and three touchdowns.

Colorado State head coach Mike Bobo, the former Georgia quarterback who is 21-18 in three seasons at the school, has been hospitalized since August 12, first in Fort Collins and now in Denver, as doctors try to figure out why he has numbness in his feet.

The Rams will visit Colorado on Friday night Aug. 31. The Hogs open the season the next day by hosting Eastern Illinois.

The Arkansas-Colorado State game will feature two of the better college football names in Razorbacks linebacker Bumper Pool and Rams offensive lineman Blake Householder.

Colorado State started last season 6-2 before losing four of its last five games, including a 31-28 setback to Marshall in the New Mexico Bowl.

The Rams' best player was Michael Gallup, a third-round draft choice of the Dallas Cowboys who caught a whopping 100 passes for 1,413 yards and 7 touchdowns.

The other three Division I college games on tap Saturday are Duquesne at UMass (4:30 p.m., DirecTV channel 623), Prairie View A&M at Rice (6 p.m., ESPN+) and Wyoming at New Mexico State (9 p.m., ESPN2).

It's not Alabama vs. Georgia or Wisconsin vs. Clemson and I'm well aware there are no college football playoff teams in that bunch, but odds are I watch some of all four.

At least we are not talking about practice anymore. We're finally talking about the games.

Sports on 08/23/2018


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