They pay me to have this kind of fun

March 23, 2006|by ANDY MASON

We have so much fun here in The Herald-Mail sports department that sometimes I can't believe it's called work.

I'm actually getting paid to write this column, which I guess makes me a professional.

In my professional opinion:

Barry Bonds will break Hank Aaron's home run record, maybe even this season. And someday he and Pete Rose will both be in the Hall of Fame. How can the game's all-time leaders in hits and back acne be left out?

Kevin Pittsnogle will lead West Virginia to the Final Four in Indianapolis and will then be selected in the first round of the NBA Draft.

Pittsnogle has become it all. He's big and he can shoot from the outside, and the national media has turned him into an adjective and a verb.


Former Orioles "ace" Sidney Ponson will win at least 15 games for the St. Louis Cardinals this season.

But no one in Baltimore will miss him, at least not those who don't get tipped for their services after midnight.

Terrell Owens will be an All-Pro receiver for Dallas this year, and he might even make an All-Pro quarterback out of Drew Bledsoe. But the Cowboys will go 0-2 again against Joe Gibbs and the Redskins.

Bradley University, whose men's basketball team upset Pittsburgh to advance to the Sweet 16, is located in Peoria, Ill.

While that's a fact, in my opinion I could have just made up the name of a town, said it was Indiana and no one would know any differently.

That's how mad March has become. ... If Wichita State doesn't reach the Elite Eight, then George Mason will. That's absolutely insane.

Gerry McNamara proved he wasn't overrated in the Big East Tournament, leading Syracuse to the title, and then drove that point home in a first-round loss to Texas A&M in the NCAA tourney.

With G-Mac nursing an injury on the bench, the Orange were the most overrated team in the field of 64.

Floyd Landis is the world's fastest Mennonite on two wheels.

With overall victories in the Tour of California and Paris-Nice stage races already under his suspenders in 2006, the Lancaster County, Pa., native is my pick to pick up where Lance Armstrong left off at the Tour de France in July.

I don't know a single thing about this year's Chambersburg softball team, but I bet the Trojans are the best team in the area - again.

That money couldn't be any safer if it were backed by the U.S. Treasury.

The Orioles will shock the world and win the American League East this season.

I say that every March - during Amateur Hour at The Herald-Mail.

Andy Mason is assistant sports editor of The Morning Herald. His column appears every other Thursday. He can be reached at 301-733-5131, ext. 2334, or by e-mail at

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