WHITT’S END: 1.28.21
Whether you’re at the end of your coffee, your day, your week or even your rope, welcome to Whitt’s End …
*Not sure if Randy Gregory will be a Cowboy when NFL free agency kicks-off March 16. But I’m certain that 10 days earlier his bookend pass-rusher will indeed be in Dallas.
When Gregory prepares to test the open market as the Cowboys’ most valuable free agent, I’ve confirmed that teammate DeMarcus Lawrence will be a featured VIP at the 10th annual DFW Golf Show.
Couple years back Lawrence claimed to be just a beginner, but something tells me he’s improved on the course as much as on the field.
The DFW Golf Show – March 4-6 at Dallas Market Hall – will also include former Cowboys Tyrone Crawford and Brice Butler, and pro golfers Cristie Kerr, Brittany Lang and Tisha Alyn. With more than 60 vendors, a “Corona Premier 19th Hole” and $59 ticket packages offering free rounds at hidden-gem courses such as RB Golf Club & Resort in Bridgeport, Tanglewood Golf Club in Pottsboro and the Golf Center in Arlington, DFW golfers can ring in Spring by forgetting the Cowboys’ offensive meltdown and interacting with one of their best defenders.
Says DFW Golf Show co-owner Danielle Cocanougher, “We are Comic Con-ing the whole event by offering one-of-a-kind experiences for golf enthusiasts.”
Oh, one more thing about Gregory: Our Mike Fisher has a look at a unique Cowboys recruiting angle ... see video below, but here's the short version: In addition to the fact that Gregory might feel a familial bond with the Jones family, which stood by him for a half a decade ... Dan Quinn is coming back and Dan Quinn is a recruiter.
Think about it ... and hope it comes true.
*Construction on I-35 being finished. Don Nelson bringing Shaquille O’Neal to the Dallas Mavericks. The Texas Rangers signing Clayton Kershaw. Like killer bees invading from the south, Y2K, “they’re coming for your guns” and the McRib being gone forever, there is one stubborn local myth that also refuses to die: Sean Payton to the Cowboys.
He says he won’t coach in 2022. But that doesn’t stop a lot of us – guilty – from trying manifest it into existence. Echoing around DFW since he left in 2006, connect-the-dots rumors of Payton’s inevitable return are stronger than ever.
*Stop holding your breath, a Cowboys source confirms to CowboysSI.com that Mike McCarthy will be back to coach the Cowboys in 2022. Furthermore, his job jeopardy was never even a thing?
*Per their DNA the last 10 years, the Mavs are again teasing - torturing - us. Winning 10 of 11. Displaying an improved defense. But ultimately … proving they still don’t belong with the Western Conference elite. Losses in the last week to the Suns and Warriors reinforce that Dallas’ roster as presently constituted can not win the West. Tim Hardaway Jr.’s foot injury is a setback. Kristaps Porzingis is still too inconsistent. Gritty, mean-streak rim-protector nowhere to be found.
The Mavs’ only chance to win a playoff series for the first time since 2011 is to finish as the No. 4 seed and earn home-court advantage in the first round. Their lone shot at challenging the Suns and Warriors is to significantly upgrade their roster. Feb. 10 is coming …
*“Pitchers and Catchers Report!” We’re supposed to hear that refreshing refrain in less than three weeks as the Rangers open spring training in Surprise, Arizona. But … will we?
*Texas A&M may be losing a blue-chip recruit, but – more importantly? – the Aggies are getting back their most dangerous receiver/returner in Ainias Smith.
*Before Texas fans have finished celebrating the transfer to Austin of top quarterback recruit Quinn Ewers, a high-school coaching legend is throwing a “calm down” wet blanket on the arrival. Party. Pooper.
*My better-late-than-never New Year’s resolution: Stop making that “old man” grunting/groaning noise when I perform ridiculously modest activities such as bending over to tie my shoes, getting out of a car or just plain sitting down. Somehow I think making that noise amplifies and validates that you are old.
We’re all getting older. I’m just not in a hurry to reach “old”. Oh, and also I’m learning to walk on my hands. Good luck to me.
Mile High History: What Does Preseason Game Mean to Cowboys, Broncos?
The long history between these teams added another chapter Thursday.
Cowboys SCOOP: Tyron Smith 'Limping' - Injury Update
Smith did indeed get "dinged'' in a way that caused him to move toward trainers during the workout.
Panic vs. Patience: Cowboys Again Out-Kicking Their Coverage
Cowboys' kicking woes, Rangers' hollow Hall of Fame, Mavs' bare cupboard and Happy Halloween, all in this week's DFW sports notebook.
*Pretty sure that every McCarthy mcmistake in 2022 is going to be framed by “Hmm, what would Payton have done?”
*I recently wrote how DFW is on the verge of 4,000 days without celebrating a sports championship. Insult to injury, apparently our logos also suck? A recent survey of fans reveals that of DFW’s sports logos, only the Mavs ranks inside the Top 10 of teams’ respective sports. While they are 9th-best in the NBA, the Cowboys are only No. 17 in the NFL, Rangers 14th in MLB, Stars No. 24 in the NHL and FC Dallas 10th in the MLS.
According to the survey the worst logo in all of sports is the Washington Football Team and the best is the San Jose Sharks. Sorry, but the Cowboys’ iconic star might be the most recognizable sports logo on the planet.
*Speaking of Ozark, am I the only one that since 2017 has been on the edge of my seat watching almost 40 hours (four seasons, 37 episodes) of a show about money laundering and still has no clue how to launder money? Main takeaway from the terrific series: Every sports team needs a leader as calm under pressure as Marty Byrde.
*Hard to believe Troy Aikman has been on TV at Fox (20 years) almost twice as long as he was on field for Cowboys. With his contract ending and Amazon getting into the NFL business of Thursday Night Football next season, Sunday’s NFC Championship Game might be his last on Fox.
Says Aikman, “It could be, yeah. Those conversations are happening now.”
*Two years ago today my Dad was in the hospital and I wasn’t sure if he’d ever get out. Diagnosed with leukemia, he underwent experimental chemo and 77 days later went home. For good. For great. His cancer is in remission, so much so that he plays golf four times a week, almost always shoots his age (he’ll be 82 in March) and only has to visit the doctor every eight weeks for checkups. This week he went back and his important levels continued to trend up. He’s healthier post-cancer than he was pre-cancer. No doubt his body knows how to heal itself. In the last 20 years his distance vision has magically improved and back pain that literally forced him to crawl out of bed mysteriously vanished one day. Like, he had a surgery scheduled to insert a disc and then somehow his vertebrae fused themselves and … I dunno.
I asked him his secret: Dr Peppers and Payday candy bars.
*Climate change, anyone? Texas experienced its hottest December since 1889, with an average daily temperature of 59. That’s about 12 degrees warmer than the average Texas December during the 20th century.
*Kudos to baseball writers for keeping Barry Bonds out of the Hall of Fame. You can be a bad character, but you can’t be a big cheater.
*If the Rams win the NFC Championship Sunday it will stop a bizarre 18-year streak of every Super Bowl featuring Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, Ben Roethlisberger or the 49ers.
*Launched on Christmas, NASA’s $10 billion James Webb Telescope finally this week reached its destination in space beyond the Moon and one million miles from Earth. Scientists will spend the next three months adjusting the telescope’s 18 mirrors into one unprecedented camera that – by Memorial Day – will look back in time 13 billion years and provide us with answers to two life-changing questions: 1. Where did we come from?; 2. Are we alone?
*Also, if the Chiefs and Rams win it will set up the first Super Bowl featuring a matchup of Texas high-school quarterbacks with Patrick Mahomes (Whitehouse) vs. Matthew Stafford (Highland Park).
*Whew! For a second there I thought we’d lost DeMarcus to the dark side of wacko conspiracy theorists. But no, he merely likes news of Dan Quinn coming back as Cowboys’ defensive coordinator in 2022.
*Love me some White Rock Lake, one of the most un-Dallasy places in Dallas. But in riding/running/rucking around it for years, I’ve never really been sure about all I’m seeing … or missing. There’s a dog park and the Arboretum and a Bath House and the spillway and a yacht club and huge-ass mansions and a zillion trails that seemingly lead in a gazillion different directions. But how to keep it all straight? Thanks to District 9 Park Board member Maria Hasbany and For the Love of the Lake president Z. Zsohar, there’s now an app for that. Those practical people/creative geniuses developed one of those cool QR codes for WRL. Now – just like a restaurant menu – simply hold your phone up to a code on one of the park’s new signs and – voila – a detailed, interactive map. It’s history, made handy.
*I’ve slept comfortably all week knowing Rodgers now has more time to do his own COVID research.
*This Weekend? Saturday let’s play video games at this very Matrix-esque joint with Big Brothers Big Sisters lil’ bro Ja. Sunday let’s watch the NFL conference championship games and fantasize about how the Cowboys could beat any of ’em. As always, don’t be a stranger.