Jinx, you say? Jinx? What jinx? Oh, you mean the little misfortunes that have mysteriously befallen the subjects of our magazine covers? That jinx?
Let's see now. There was Chris "Long Distance" Lewis in August. His football season didn't amount to much, but neither did his message units. Never did get off-the-hook after that slap-on-the-credit-card, one-game suspension. You might say he hung up on the '02 season. No dial tone for Coach Buddy. Just a fast busy signal.
The following month? Teyo, Ryan and Luke mugging with their position coach, David Kelly, the men behind the cover headline: "Receiving Greatness." How great was it? Teyo tanked and Luke limped. Ryan reeled, and Coach Kelly is probably still wondering what the hell went wrong.
To add injury to insult, Johnson's last moves in a Cardinal uniform came with the aid of crutches as he eluded the mob engulfing the Memorial Stadium turf at the final gun of the Big Shame. Wonder if those crutches could have helped him elude the defensive backs blanketing him all year. A month later, he left school, opting for the NFL draft. A curious maneuver considering he didn't even make All-Conference. But that's another story.
Here's to a full and speedy recovery for Luke Powell, who, during the entire season, was not Luke Powell.
Monty was our cover boy in December. He promptly finished last in his own invitational – a first in the Monty era. In January, we tried to get the New Year off on the right foot. We went with Chris Hernandez, who promptly broke his. Heck, even our Dollie of the Month was sidelined for a home game against Oregon State as soon as the January issue was released. Has the jinx taken control of the entire publication?
This magazine game is tough, man. Tough.
There's an explanation, of course. You know that weird little troll that follows Willingham around South Bend, Indiana these days? The runty little twerp with the stupid beard, the geeky plaid slacks like Rodney Dangerfield's in Caddyshack, and the tam-o-shanter cap? The leprechaun? Well, see, these little creeps are traditionally known to perpetrate all kinds of mischief. We encourage all Cardinalmaniacs to send boxes of tainted Lucky Charms ™ to Notre Dame, care of the perp who plays Leprechaun O'Leary on Saturdays.
Betcha our cover jinx evaporates faster than the luck of the Irish (or the luck of the Sheriff) in bowl games.
By the time you read this, letters of intent from football recruits should be clogging up the fax machines at Arrillaga and Cardinal baseball will be in full swing. The meaning of all this? Simply that another glorious springtime of renewal is not far behind. Still, there's plenty of men's and women's hoops action remaining. Get into Maples and help the Cardinal salvage something out of '03. And while you're salvaging, enjoy this lineup of roguish, rebellious, restroom reading in the best tradition of The Bootleg:
- Later this month, Monty's Men take their show on the road south for the annual pilgrimage to Pauley Pavilion, one of the more venerable hoops arenas. But for all the hoops hoopla surrounding Pauley, Stanford has had its way with the Bruins in recent years –those many championship banners notwithstanding. Can the Cardinal men win a record sixth straight on the Bruins' home floor?
- The Bootleg presents a new, monthly series: The State of the Program. We're talking football, here. Each month, we'll look at some aspect of the changing scene of Division 1 football and make our highly judgmental and prejudiced assessment of just how well – or poorly – Stanford is doing to remain competitive on the field and attractive at the gate.
- Of the four classes represented on today's Stanford men's basketball squad, the odd couple of Matt Lottich and Nick Robinson arrived in the fall of 2000 with the least fanfare. But injuries and early NBA departures have thrust this forgotten class into the spotlight of Stanford hoops. Mike Eubanks has the story on their growth on and off the floor, including the adjustments to their new roles.
- Joe Ritzo, our resident baseball expert, previews Stanford's Boys of Summer as they begin their long quest to return to the College World Series in Omaha for a record 5th time in a row.
- Is the Pac-10 hoops tourney here to stay? What's with the conference television package? Who are those awful Pac-10 refs? For answers to some of these questions, turn to page 16.
- Susan King and Chelsea Trotter are both redshirt sophomores trying to battle back from serious knee injuries to contribute for the women's hoops squad. Lilla Toal chronicles their come-back trails.
Another brain-bending BootWord ™ puzzle beckons all Cardinalmaniac trivialistas ™. Sink your Thesaurus Rex teeth into this one, courtesy of The Bootleg's Prince o' puzzles, Jim Rutter.
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