From the sidelines

Published 12:00 am Saturday, December 30, 2000

Michael Kiral

I have two voices in my head as I write this column – one of reason and the other that of a sportswriter.
The voice of a sportswriter is telling me to write my predictions for the coming year. After all, I did predict last January that the Saints would go 10- 6 with a breakout quarterback (although it was Aaron Brooks who would fit that role and not Jake Delhomme as I had predicted). And LSU did play in the Peach Bowl against an ACC team. So what if it was Georgia Tech and not North Carolina State like I said it would be. I also had Michigan State winning the NCAA title and Detroit the Stanley Cup.
But the voice of reason then breaks in to remind me that I had Penn State playing Alabama for the national championship this year. Oops. Or that I had San Antonio defeating the Lakers in the West and winning the NBA title. Oh, and the minor fact that I had Tiger Woods winning the Masters for his only major of the year. That turned out to be the only one he didnt win. OK, so the old crystal computer screen was a little dusty last year. Lets polish it right up and see what 2001 holds in store.
Florida State defeats Oklahoma handily in Orange Bowl. Miami (Fla.) defeats Florida in thrilling Sugar Bowl, earns split of national title. Steve Spurrier demands a recount, saying Santana Moss three touchdowns were unfairly counted.
Eddie George rushes for three touchdowns, Jevon Kearse gets three sacks as the Tennessee Titans get their first Super Bowl title with a victory over Minnesota. Ironically, George scores the winning touchdown on a one-yard run in the final seconds.
Oaklands Rich Gannon named NFL MVP. Jim Haslett selected Coach of the Year and Randy Mueller Executive of the Year.
LSU, Tulane women advance to Sweet 16 of NCAA tournament. LSU men earn NIT invite. Salmen graduate Chris Duhon hits 16-footer with 10 seconds left to give Duke NCAA title over Stanford.
Baseball owners agree to put freeze on ticket prices. Players agree to salary cap. Fans get excited until they realize the date – April 1.
Tiger Woods caps calendar-year Grand Slam, wins Masters by six strokes. Ole Miss Deuce McAllister goes first overall in NFL Draft. Saints select Kansas State wide receiver Quincy Morgan.
LSU, Louisiana-Lafayette make it to Super Regionals. The Tigers advance to the College World Series, lose to eventual national champion Florida State. Gov. Mike Foster proclaims Skip Bertman Day in Louisiana shortly afterwards.
Los Angeles Lakers roll through playoffs, win second straight NBA title. While playing Allen Iversons rap music backwards, Shaquille ONeal suddenly learns the secret of free throw shooting.
Colorado defeats New Jersey for Stanley Cup.
Woods makes it five majors in a row by capturing U.S. Open by one stroke over Notah Begay.
Pete Sampras caps remarkable career by winning U.S. Tennis Open.
Colin Montgomery ends Woods run by winning British Open. PGA Championship goes to Phil Mickelson.
The Minnesota Twins, behind a solid young pitching staff, shock the baseball world by earning a wild card spot. Division winners in the American League are New York, Chicago and Oakland. In the National League, Atlanta, St. Louis and Colorado. San Francisco gets wild card. Chicagos pitching dominates Colorados hitting as the White Sox bring home first World Series title to Chicago since 1916.
The excitement doesnt last for long, however, as a work stoppage is called shortly after the final game.
Saints repeat NFC West title, go 11-5.
In a game with national championship implications, Florida defeats LSU in SEC Championship game. Florida plays Notre Dame for national championship in Rose Bowl. LSU gets spot in Sugar Bowl against Tommy Bowden-coached Clemson.
Tulane plays in Gallery Bowl against Colorado. This writer makes appointment with psychologist to seek treatment for voices in his head.