Q)How are ticket sales going in a tough South Florida real estate market, one of the hardest hit in the country?
Alain: It's difficult to gauge because the games down here always end up being declared sellouts even though there might be 15,000 tickets left because the blackout deadline. This, however, probably wasn't one of those occasions because the large number of New York transplants in South Florida always makes the Jets a hot ticket (especially for a season opener). The game was declared a sellout on Thursday. The only question is how many of the fans in the stands will be pulling for the Dolphins and how many for the Jets.
Q)Tell us about Tony Sparano - the coach, the man . . .
Alain: Straight out of central casting for a football coach. Looks the part, talks the part. It's nice change from the Dolphins' last two head coaches, Nick Saban and Cam Cameron, who looked more like college professors. Another thing to like about Sparano is that, unlike Cameron, he's not afraid to get in guys' faces and the players seem to totally respect him (again, a stark contrast from Cameron). In his dealings with the media, he's gotten more and more comfortable and again has been a nice change from the condescending Saban and the evasive Cameron. Even though you can't gauge a coach's ability until the real games count, let's just say this guy is off to an impressive start.