The Bullet Points
- Part 1 is the injury Tyron Criswell sustained against Santa Clara, the one that sent him to the floor writhing in pain, and that gives me the heeby-jeebies just thinking back on it. Knees aren’t supposed to do that! Part 2 is the tense four days spent waiting for his MRI results, hearing he’d be doubtful for the next game, and then reading about his warming up before the game inexplicably no worse for wear. Again, knees aren’t supposed to do that! Confession time: Yours Truly is extremely squeamish. I will look away as soon as a replay of an injury — any injury — begins to play on a television broadcast. A Walking Dead episode I can deal with, because that stuff is practical special effects, and zombies are also not real. But actual pain and gore that's not fake? For me, that’s a big, steaming pile of NOPE. My hat is off to Criswell and his knees, apparently on loan from Mr. Fantastic.
- The basketball team’s non-conference slate came to the end most of figured it would, but neither of their last two games were easy to watch. Between A.J. West’s fresh absence, the aforementioned unpleasantness and a Santa Clara player going Beast Mode on the Pack defense, Nevada was lucky to escape its home date with the Broncos unscathed. That was immediately followed up with a game which can best be summed up by Charlie Brown running to kick a football. We thought they might have a shot to at least cover the spread — particularly after Comeback Criswell appeared — but it was always going to be yanked away from them. Where Nevada has a couple of players who can pop a three upon request, the Shockers had many players. Coupled with their deeper bench, a withering defense, the home crowd, and a not negligible imbalance in foul calls, and it all escalated quickly from there. Burn the game film and move on. Whether Wichita State really is that much more talented than Nevada matters little, because the Pack are unlikely to face another team on that level for the rest of the season. Granted, you could argue that Nevada Southern comes close (they did play the Shockers a lot closer, after all), but any team who can pull in four-star recruits with regularity and still get out-coached by David Carter on multiple occasions is always worthy of some skepticism.
- The Mountain West’s first three bowl games are in the books, and it’s another flying start of crapulence for the conference. New Mexico’s comeback against Arizona came up short, further reinforcing our belief that that bowl game in Albuquerque is cursed. San Jose State evened things up with their first bowl win in three years, and the Fightin’ Cow Milkers of Utah State surrendered the Yes, This Game Is Still Being Played Every Year Bowl to Akron. I eagerly look forward to similar cynicism following Nevada’s sure-to-be-stellar performance next week.
Brewer’s Cabinet Dirty Wookie Imperial Brown Ale (Reno, Nevada) ~ I did my nerdly duty this weekend and saw Star Wars twice: once on a regular screen on opening night, and again in IMAX 3D a few days later. Also like a good nerd, I gave in to the Galaxy theater’s perfect marketing of putting this beer on tap to coincide with opening weekend. I might as well have grabbed the concession worker by the shirt and yelled “Shut up and take my money!” Technically it should be spelled with two e’s, but, ya know, copyrights. It’s a darker brown than a certain Wookiee sidekick, and had a light head in my plastic cup. It was lightly sweet and a little malty, with some toffee, then chocolate in the taste (but more of the former). I didn’t taste any of the raisin supposedly in it, and the finish was sweeter than I would’ve liked. At 9% alcohol, it did, however, leave me lightly toasted for the film. I’d rank the movie above the beer, but it wasn’t bad overall. I give it three and a half tipsy Wolfies out of five.
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