Wednesday, January 25, 2012

“What-If” Wednesdays

A new topic for the week at Rock Bottom, have you ever been thinking of a sports story/event and wondered to yourself, “What-If”? Well, for every Wednesday now on, Boomer will bring you two “What-If” sports stories from the past and provide you with his opinion on the event and give you what could of happened if “what-if” were the case. Enjoy, it should be fun, let me know what you think of it and give me your take on the story/event.

The 1980 USA Hockey Team

The “Miracle on Ice”, probably one of the greatest moments in USA sports history. Even though, I wasn’t even alive at the time, I thought this would be a good “What-If” to start with. The heavily favored USSR team (considered to be the best team in the world at the time), where expected to win the Gold Medal at the 1980 Winter Olympics. However, the USA squad led by coach Herb Brooks (made up of amateur and college players) pulled off one of the greatest upsets in sports history, winning, 4 to 3. What some people don’t remember is that the USA squad still had to beat Finland to win the Gold Medal. The USA hockey team has only been able to attain a Silver medal twice (2002, 2010) since the “Miracle on Ice”, truly the 1980 USA hockey team had one of the greatest moments in USA sports history.

“What If”
It’s hard to imagine what it would be like not having the “Miracle on Ice” as part of our USA sports history. If they don’t beat Finland, for the gold medal, maybe the game against the Soviet’s might not have been as memorable to remember. Coach Brooks probably would have been slammed (he already was getting some heat) for putting together a team of amateur’s and college players. They would have been no Miracle movie starring Kurt Russell. Of course, what would Al Michaels be remembered for if not for this game?

Hail Flutie

November 23, 1984, the Miami Orange Bowl, was the site of one of the greatest plays in college football history. Doug Flutie #22 connected with WR Gerard Phelan, giving the Boston College Eagles a dramatic 47 to 45 win over the Miami Hurricanes. The play is known as “Hail Flutie”, and for some people, its believed to have catapulted Flutie to winning the 1984 Heisman Trophy (though the Heisman ballots had been collected the week before). Some other notable stats from that game, the Hurricanes’ QB Bernie Kosar threw for a school-record 447 passing yards, while Flutie threw for 472 yards and 4 touchdowns, becoming the first college QB to throw for over 10,000 yards in his career. Clearly, one of the greatest college football plays of all-time.

“What If”
What would sports history be if Flutie didn’t get the pass away or if a Hurricanes’ defender would have batted the pass down? He ends up winning the Heisman, but he would be left without that “Heisman play” to be remembered by. Flutie had a wonderful 1984 senior season, but would people have remembered much about it, if not for that one play down at the Miami Orange Bowl? What sort of career would he have had afterwards, if not for “Hail Flutie”?