What a year it has been for LSU quarterback Joe Burrow. What a story. In a matter of a year, he went from a small-town Ohio kid to a legendary quarterback in the Bayou.

Burrow capped off the year by winning the Heisman trophy before leading the LSU Tigers to a national championship. The Tigers defeated defending champion Clemson by a 42-25 count on Monday.

Burrow threw five touchdown passes, ran for another score and finished off one of the most accomplished seasons in college football history.

The senior quarterback from The Plains, Ohio, lead LSU (15-0) to its first national title since 2007 and fourth overall, breaking a few more records along the way in what was already an historic season. The five scoring passes and 463 yards passing are the most for a BCS or College Football Playoff title game as are his six total touchdowns.

And for those who do not know the whole story, it gets better. Burrow transferred from Ohio State to LSU after being told by the Buckeyes that he was not good enough to inherit their starting quarterback position.

Joe Burrow

Not good enough I ask. How about the following stats against AP top-5 teams this season? He and LSU went 4-0 in those games while he averaged 425 passing yards a game. Burrow threw 19 scoring passes in that quartet of games and did not throw a single interception.

Even though Burrow is a product of Ohio, you know it had to be sweet for him to beat Clemson, the school that eliminated Ohio State’s title aspirations in the semifinals.

Not surprisingly, Burrow is now the leading candidate to be the number one player chosen in the April’s NFL draft. That will likely put him back in his home state as the Cincinnati Bengals possess the first pick in the draft.


Shame on the Houston Astros.

MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred released MLB’s findings from the recently concluded investigation centering on the Houston Astros and alleged sign-stealing.

Manfred did not mess around with the 2017 and 2019 champs. He dropped the hammer on the Astros and left no doubt that the franchise was guilty.

Manager A.J. Hinch and GM Jeff Luhnow will be suspended for the season without pay. First- and second-round picks in 2020 and ’21, gone. A $5 million fine, the most allowed under baseball’s constitution.

This was not a slap on the wrist. From what I am reading, this penalty has shaken up the game. If it did not the Astros’ decision to fire Luhnow and Hinch should.

Short of vacating the two title, this becomes a clear and startling message to the rest of baseball. The message is that fair play and integrity matters.

Just wondering. How can any Houston players feel good about having to cheat to win a championship?

What About Rose?

I just had a thought after writing the beforementioned story on the Astros.

Since MLB did not suspend a single player for their part in the sign-stealing, why is Pete Rose still kicked out of the game?

Pete Rose, 1985

What the Astros (and others i.e. 2018 champs Boston Red Sox) did was baseball at its worst. Is stealing and cheating with video equipment in the shadows of stadiums with information that could alter games and postseason fates any less damaging then betting on a game?

How many pitchers had careers altered because of the uneven playing field, watching a rare moment to impress disappear because the opposition knew what pitch was coming?

For those not aware of what Houston did here is the scheme. The Astros had a center-field camera connected to a dugout monitor, allowed the Astros to see the signs opposing catchers were giving to pitchers. Then-Houston bench coach Alex Cora developed the system, which involved using a bat and a trash can to alert Astros hitters when a breaking ball was coming.

The Hall Of Fame will be forced to acknowledge in some way that the Astros’ 2017 World Series title, and possibly Boston’s 2018 title, was tainted by cheating. But a lifetime ban means Rose can’t get inducted into the Hall.

I am not sure if justice is balanced when it comes to players who benefited from this cheating and the lifetime ban Rose is still under. Astro players have their World Series rings and are about ready to open Spring Training. Yet MLB keeps Rose out of the game.

Just thinking out loud.