TV college football games last too long

By Steve Sell
September 13, 2016

Tuesday’s thoughts...

• TV COLLEGE FOOTBALL GAMES TOO LONG — As I was watching the marathon KU-Ohio football game on Saturday, I was wondering if the seasons were going to change.

Granted, we’re almost to fall. But as long as it took for the game to be played, I swear I felt a crispness in the air normally associated with the last of our four seasons (at least if you go by Carole King’s lyrics in "You’ve Got A Friend").

College football games are 60 minutes, but it takes better than 200 for them to play out. Stopping the clock after every first down and the endless number of “plays under review” have fans reaching for black coffee to stay awake.

And in this era of spread offenses — especially in the Big 12 where the running attack is an afterthought — there’s a lot of incomplete passes. 

College football needs to keep the clock moving on first downs. It’s not uncommon for there to be more than 50 in a game, which means 50 stoppages in play. Sure it would make for less plays, but it also would help from an injury standpoint. There are games where we're subjected to 150 plays or more.

Then of course you have the commercials and you have abnormal breaks. Halftime also needs to be shaved by 5 minutes.

College football is a great game, but it’s becoming more exhausting to watch.

• MHS GIRLS TENNIS TEAM ON FIRE — We’re getting closer to the classification date by the Kansas State High School Activities Association and nobody monitors it more closely than McPherson High’s girls tennis.

Very soon we’re going to find out if Wichita Collegiate remains in Class 4A or drops to Class 3A. Collegiate is the No. 1-ranked team in Class 4A, but is always on the fence in terms of enrollment.

If the Spartans do drop down, it’s good news for the Bullpups, who have won every meet they have entered, including Saturday’s high-powered Salina Central Invitational that included some ranked teams. The Bullpups got past Arkansas City for the team title and the Bulldogs are the No. 2-ranked team in Class 5A.

Ellea Ediger won another singles championship at Salina, while the doubles team of Rachel Ivers and Maisie Edmonson took second. Of course Ediger and Ivers combined to take second in the state in doubles last year and the Wichita Collegiate team that defeated them in the finals graduated.

The Bullpups are off until Saturday when they play at Smoky Valley, which gave them a tough test earlier this season. Also in the field are ranked teams Wichita Independent, Sterling and Marysville, as well as MHS' arch-rival Buhler.

• BACKBREAKING SCHEDULE — If playing tough teams make you better, few teams should be tougher than McPherson High's boys soccer team.

The Bullpups opened the season playing 5A power Newton and two-time defending Class 4-1A state champion Rose Hill in the first week. Then came the Maize South Invitational, which included a bevy of playoff-worthy teams. Today, the Bullpups head to Winfield for what is always an emotional and high-level style of game. Thursday, MHS is home against Salina Central, which in recent years loses only a handful of games during the regular season.

The Bullpups certainly will be strengthened by the time they reach postseason play. Among some of the other games still to be played are Salina South, Buhler and the rematch of the Maize South championship game with Valley Center.

• WARE WAS AWESOME — The Kansas City Chiefs can certainly take their time in getting Jamaal Charles back on the field.

Charles did not play in Sunday's season opener against San Diego as he's still coming back from a knee injury.

All Spencer Ware did in his stead was rush for 70 yards and totaled 129 yards worth of pass receptions for 199 yards of total offense. Charles very seldom reaches that number when he's 100 percent.

And the Chiefs didn't even use Charcandrick West or Knile Davis that much. Ware is a powerful runner who goes north and south, while having soft hands out of the backfield.

If I'm Andy Reid, I don't rush Charles back until he's 100 percent. It's obvious the Chiefs probably have the deepest reservoir of backs in the NFL.

• STINKEROO — When looking at the schedule Monday, the Kansas City Royals were probably licking their chops.

A 6-1 or 7-0 homestand seemed possible. Woebegone Oakland was coming to town for four, followed by three against a Chicago White Sox team the Royals had just won a series from on the road.

Instead of setting the tone on Monday, the Royals dropped the biggest egg you'll ever see. The A's, averaging just 2 1/2 runs over their last 15 games, took advantage of walks early and then hit everything the Royals served up for an embarrassing 16-3 victory.

That's the beauty of baseball. No matter how much of a mismatch things look on paper, you still have to play the game between the white lines.

The teams start 0-0 today and who's to say the Royals won't turn the tables and jump all over the A's?

After Monday's debacle, however, the Royals now have to think in terms of a 5-2 homestand, which at this point may be not be enough.