Groundbreaker

Perhaps you've heard of Sarah Palin, the v.p. candidate you'd never heard of until last week.

She's the one who gave that feisty speech at the Republican National Convention.

But what you might not know is Palin was once a sportscaster. You can see her on an Alaska TV station in 1988 by accessing YouTube.

Asked in the video by a news anchor about an upcoming Syracuse-Pitt game, she said vaguely, "Well, they're gonna play, anyway."

When he said, "Don't go overboard, then," she responded, "Well, we'll see what happens."

Not good, but it did teach her to read a teleprompter and deliver non-answer answers — invaluable tools for an aspiring politician.

Just wondering: Does this mean we can plan on a Michelle Tafoya-Lisa Guerrero ticket in 2012?

Rare opportunity

Fabian Espindola is possibly out for six weeks, thanks to his overexuberance.

The Real Salt Lake forward hurt his leg doing backflips to celebrate a goal Saturday.

Stupid and unnecessary? Probably. But let's give him some slack. This is soccer.

How many chances do those guys get to celebrate?

Nueve-uno-uno

Cincinnati Bengals receiver Chad Johnson has switched his name to Chad Ocho Cinco, which means Chad Eight Five (his uniform number) in EgoSpeak.

Actually, the last really good name change was when XFL receiver Rod Smart pasted "He Hate Me" on his jersey.

Which suggests another possibility for Mr. Ocho Cinco: How about "We Hate Him"?

The real showdown

If you simply can't wait for the big BYU-Utah showdown on Nov. 22, here's a little something to tide you over.

The national mascot of the year competition is coming up, and this week's BYU-UCLA game features two of the 12 finalists for the honor.

Right there on Edwards Stadium grass you'll see Cosmo the Cougar battle it out with Joe Bruin.

Let's be honest: With that kind of first-rate entertainment, will anyone really be watching the game?

Bolt of clarity

Legendary club-thrower Tommy Bolt, who won the 1958 U.S. Open, died recently at 92.

In 2002, he explained his colorful penchant to Golf Digest: "It thrills crowds to see a guy suffer. That's why I threw clubs so often. They love to see golf get the better of someone, and I was only too happy to oblige them. At first I threw clubs because I was angry. After a while it became showmanship, plain and simple. I learned that if you helicopter those dudes by throwing them sideways instead of overhand, the shaft wouldn't break as easy. It's an art, it really is."

Add bolt

An obituary in the New York Times included this observation by Bolt: "Here's irony for you. The driver goes the shortest distance when you throw it. The putter flies farthest, followed by the sand wedge."


E-mail: rock@desnews.com