Calvert County Times May 18, 2017 - Page 7

Thursday, May 18, 2017 The Calvert County Times Sports 7 Virtual Football Molly Barrick, indoor track at Northern High and Giovanni “Gino” Sita, wrestling at Huntingtown High pose for picture. Photo from Calvert County Public Schools. Board of Education Honors State Athletic Champions At the May 11, 2017 meeting, the Cal- vert County Public Schools Board of Edu- cation honored two athletes who won state championships during the winter season. Dr. Daniel D. Curry, Superintendent, said, “Calvert County sends champions of all kinds to state competitions. We’re so pleased to honor these two.” The state champions for the winter sea- son are: Molly Barrick, Indoor Track, Northern High, Coach Joshua Dawson; and Giovanni “Gino” Sita, Wrestling, Hun- tingtown High, Coach Kevin Gilligan. During her running career at Northern High, Molly Barrick has set or been a part of four different indoor school records. This year she won the Maryland Public Secondary School Athletic Association (MPSSAA) 3A Indoor 3200 Meter Cham- pionship. She has been the MPSSAA 3A Regional Champion two times over for her races in the 1600 and 3200 and received Honorable Mention in the Washington Post All-Met selection. Gino Sita won the MPSSAA champion- ship for wrestling at 195 pounds. During his high school career, he was a four-time state place winner and a two-time state finalist. He was a region champion (two years), Southern Maryland Athletic Con- ference (SMAC) champion (two years), region finalist (three years), SMAC final- ist (four years), and SMAC Wrestler of the Year (2017). Gino ended his season with a record 45-2, and a career record of 177-19, which ranks him 2 nd all-time in Maryland public school victories. From Calvert County Public Schools. Blue Crabs’ Munro Signed by Seattle Mariners The Southern Maryland Blue Crabs an- nounced Thursday the contract of Infield- er Danny Muno has been purchased by the Seattle Mariners organization. Muno will report to the Tacoma Rainiers—AAA af- filiate of the team. To this point in the 2017 season, Muno has posted a .254 batting average, while hitting one home run, and stealing four bases. He was named the opening day starting second baseman for Southern Maryland, in his first season with the team. He leaves the team having started in 18 of the team’s 20 games this season. Prior to signing with the Blue Crabs, Muno played six seasons with affiliated teams. He spent the first five full seasons in the New York Mets organization, reach- ing the MLB with the team in 2015, ap- pearing in 17 games. He spent the 2016 season between the Mets, Chicago White Sox, and Miami Marlins organizations, before joining the Blue Crabs for the start of 2017. “Danny has been a great player to have around the clubhouse,” said Blue Crabs Manag er John Harris. “He provided great consistency towards the top of our lineup and was committed to improving himself and the team. We wish him the best of luck as he continues to move closer to his goal of returning to The Show.” Muno is the second Southern Maryland Blue Crab to have his contract purchased by an MLB Organization in the 2017 sea- son. He joins Blue Crabs’ teammate Justin De Fratus in the Mariners organization. For more information on the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs, or to reserve your seat today for any of the Blue Crabs up- coming home games, please visit our website at somdbluecrabs.comor call us at 301-638-9788. From Josh Owens for Southern Marylad Blue Crabs After taking a brief hiatus, I’m back - or at least some damaged version is – from a self-imposed exile from society at-large, D.C. sports in general and the eternally- hexed Washington Capitals, specifically. The Darkness, the evil force undeniably enveloping D.C.’s professional teams, over- whelmed me. How acute was my sports-affective dis- order? After the inexplicable, inexcusable and completely illogical Game 4 loss to the Penguins, I was Caps-fan-on-fire: scream- ing like 1980’s hair metal concert goer and using language that wouldn’t make my momma proud. The aftermath was unprecedented: I abandoned the Caps. With the misery nee- dle buried in the red, I did not watch games 5-7. First time in my life I’ve ever done such a thing. I’d seen this Caps script too many times and was in no place to willfully subject myself to the anguish. This annual torment is the Caps’ Rite of Spring, if you will, a play on the haunting/doomsday’s approaching masterpiece by…wait for it… Russian composer Igor Stravinsky. Game 4 broke me. I couldn’t even write; a condition critical that forced Duke Radbourn to pen the last column while I recovered. But enough of that. Here we are, together again, in this fabulous moment to discuss something of substance or at least bizarre, like the death of major sports league. The buried lede: The NFL won’t live to see Super Bowl C (100) in 2066, not in its current form. The now undeniable conse- quences on the human body and, more im- portantly, the human brain are too great. Countless former NFL players are suf- fering from early on-set dementia, a diag- nosis that is often posthumously changed to Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE). Confusion. Mood swings. Child-like be- havior. Forgetfulness. Depression. Sui- cide. These are the symptoms. Two more names were added to the NFL’s victim list last week: Nick Buoniconti and Jim Kiick, teammates on the undefeated 1972 Miami Dolphins. Many, many more will follow. But this generation has something the priors didn’t: knowledge of football’s risks. That knowledge will curb the NFL’s talent supply, either through increased early re- tirements or young athletes opting for other sports. It will also pull the league’s purse strings as sponsors disassociate their brand from a debilitating sport. What does the future hold for America’s sport? Tom Brady, pending Madden cover boy, might have teased the answer recently. When playing the game with his son, Brady disclosed that he chooses either Green Bay or Seattle. New England? Not an option. His son makes that claim. Virtual football. Is that where we’re headed? Is virtual reality the solution for the NFL? Crazy talk? Sure. I’ve been a little bleary- eyed recently. I’ve flirted with the dark cor- ners of my brain. But if you think the NFL will just keep marching along, as is, with the same corporate sponsors and the same sup- ply line snaking back through colleges, high schools and pee wee football, you aren’t pay- ing attention to what professional football is doing to its participants. Think of these scenarios: a fully virtual league or one where players are robots, con- trolled remotely by humans. In the former the “players” are programmed with attri- butes – size, speed, etc. – with complex cod- ing/simulation determining the outcome. In the latter, all robots are physically iden- tical with the game decided by the skill of gamers. Or something like that. You get the idea. No more concussions. No more injuries. Player personalities could be cultivated like WWE stars. Gridiron superheroes. And ponder the potential revenue growth with the sport now globally viable and freed of human body-imposed game limits. But would we watch? Of course we would. This is 2066, mind you. When considering the technological advances of the last 50 years, is 2066 even sufficiently imaginable to mount a counter- argument? And do you doubt future gen- erations will lack the bloodthirst that makes football so appealing? Besides, look at us now. Concocted Face- book lives. On-line dating. Reality televi- sion (which is often anything but). Virtual reality is everywhere – and it’s getting scary- good. Facts are routinely skewed. Fiction thrives, even in the most important facets of American life. If the story’s compelling, we’ll buy a ticket and take the ride without hardly a question asked. Send comments to Advertising Representative Wanted APPLY TODAY Requirements: Advertising sales or comparable experience | Professional creative problem solving attitude Strong presentation skills | Exceptional written/verbal communication skills Ability to work independently | Entrepreneurial spirit Send resume to