Now you know why football scouts are paid so well. Because until Saturday, few folks in Wisconsin knew Jordy Nelson from Geordi La Forge. But Ted Thompson’s crew (and Mel Kiper) straightened us out, and thank goodness for that. Otherwise, we might never have learned that Jordy wears a facemask, not an eyemask.
In case you missed it – and if you did, then welcome back from Djbouti – Jordy was Green Bay’s top pick in the 2008 NFL Draft. He’s a wide receiver from Kansas State, and his expectation of being drafted by the Packers was pretty much in line with yours.
Why would he? Green Bay was already stacked at wideout, featuring studs in Donald Driver and Greg Jennings to go with an up-and-comer like James Jones and the reclamation project of Koren Robinson.
But in the NFL, and particularly Green Bay, too much is never enough, which suits Nelson just fine.
“It’s a small town, and I kind of like that,” Nelson said. “That’s kind of the way I am.”
Yes, Nelson hails from the metropolis of Riley, Kan., population 886. Or, as I like to call it, Section 102, which is where they’ll all fit when Nelson invites them to Lambeau.
No problem, though. Sometimes, Supermen come from Kansas Smallvilles. And while Nelson might not be a Man of Steel, apparently he can hold his own. Kiper says the kid runs great routes and has hands of glue.
Of course, Kiper also equated the cold weather of Manhattan, Kan., to the cold weather of Green Bay. So it’s a good thing he makes his money on football instead of meteorology.
This Week’s Pop Quiz
1) Why did NBC and “The Celebrity Apprentice” reject O.J. Simpson’s recent bid to get a role on the show?
A) No golf course elimination challenges.
B) No armed robbery elimination challenges.
C) No work release elimination challenges.
D) An uncommon occurrence of common decency.
Answer: D. We hope.
Quote of Note I
“It might be the steak I ate yesterday. Nah, just kidding.”
– Vegetarian Prince Fielder, whose power drought was raising questions about his new eating habits, after hitting two home runs in Milwaukee’s 5-4 win over Philadelphia Wednesday night.
Quote of Note II
“My thing is that you guys [reporters] eat meat all day and you can’t hit a ball.”
– Vegetarian Prince Fielder, as reported in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, making an excellent point.
Quote of Note III
“The Brewers take the lead on a Prince Fielder home run. … That is good wood right there.”
– Play-by-play man Brian Anderson, after Fielder’s Saturday night game-winning center-field moonshot against Florida officially drove a steak… er, stake through the heart of any more vegetarian stories on Prince.
In other news…
Are you feeling particularly satisfied as a Wisconsin sports fan these days? ESPN the Magazine sure seems to think so.
The mag’s latest fan satisfaction rankings among professional sports franchises have the Packers at No. 4 (including the best stadium experience) and the Brewers at No. 13. Only the Indianapolis Colts, the San Antonio Spurs and the New Orleans Hornets finished above the Pack, while the Brewers were well ahead of the Cubs, who checked in at a robust 95th.
The Bucks? No. 109. No pressure, Scott Skiles.
Catcing up with Tom
For those Marquette fans still bitter about Tom Crean tiptoeing to the cornfields of Indiana, well, here’s a chance to get even bitterer.
“If I’d thought about it longer,” Crean said recently in an extensive ESPN.com story, “I could’ve talked myself out of it. But I didn’t want to.
Coming to a T-shirt near you.
No, not the gorilla. Rest in peace, Samson.
But while Crean traded Milwaukee for Indiana, Kelvin Sampson appears to going the reverse route. Ushered out of the Indiana job because of alleged NCAA violations, Sampson is now a leading candidate to join the Milwaukee Bucks as an assistant coach.
I actually got to know Sampson a bit when we were both working in Oklahoma, and while I can’t vouch for his phone habits, he always struck me as a knowledgeable and likeable coach. Moreover, he seemed to have excellent relationships with his players, so perhaps he and Skiles could play the whole good cop, bad cop routine. That should serve the Bucks well, even if his hiring does initially lead to some uncomfortable questions.
Roger Clemens, meet future country music star Mindy McCready.
Roger Clemens, meet future steroids injector Brian McNamee.
And which of these introductions has the potential to do more harm to Clemens’ reputation?
Paging Chris Hansen.