Shots in the Darke


For all of you golfing enthusiasts and duffers out there comes the quote of the week from the just concluded FedEx Cup Championship in Atlanta. In talking about the ability of the top pro golfers a commentator stated “it’s hard to make a bogey from the fairway”; I immediately thought “no it’s not, I do it all of the time!”.

Viktor Hovland, a 25-year-old Norwegian, played the best golf of his life the past two weeks, first winning the BMW Championship in Chicago and then claiming the Tour Championship in Georgia Sunday, shooting a final round 63 to win by five strokes over Xander Schauffele, who carded a 62 on the last eighteen. The difference between first and second? Hovland took home $18 million compared to the measly $6.5 million won by Schauffele—even the last place finisher in the 30-man field of qualifiers received a check for $500,000! Not bad for four days work but remember these are the world’s best at what they do and they had to qualify based on the entire year’s effort.

College football got underway Saturday with an abbreviated schedule, the headline game being played in Dublin, Ireland as the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame overwhelmed the Midshipmen of Navy 42-3. All FBS teams tee it up this week in what will be the final semblance of what we’ve considered as college football for as long as any of us can remember. Next year will be entirely different as the conference realignments come into play— many traditional rivalries will come to an end, replaced by games such as Washington-Rutgers, West Virginia-Arizona State, Oregon-Maryland, etc. Combined with the transfer portal, NIL, television contracts, little regard for the student-athletes in other sports affected by the new affiliations, and the ability of fans to attend games across the country on a regular basis, next season will be a test of all of our experiences and senses—but you know what? We’ll still continue to get fired up for College Game Day and the pageantry of college football weekends!

Two games of local interest will see THE traveling to Bloomington to take on the Hoosiers of Indiana and the battle of the Miamis in Florida, the RedHawks from Oxford meeting the Hurricanes from the “other” Miami (remember the Ohio version was a school long before Florida was a state!). Most Buckeye fans are on the edge of their seats waiting for Head Coach Ryan Day’s decision on who will be the starting quarterback and if the defense will finally play up to lofty expectations.

Don’t forget the Treaty City Invitational at Greenville’s City Park this Saturday as the Wave host one of the larger Cross Country meets around Southwest Ohio. The annual large field will start near the Altar of Peace and have several races from junior high up through the varsity competitions throughout the morning beginning at 8:00.

Here are two items of interest from the food industry—Starbucks Coffee plans to open a coffee shop in China every nine hours to reach 9,000 locations across the country by 2025. That’s it, drive the People’s Republic into bankruptcy with high-priced caffeine!

The other brings us to today’s trivia question—who’s the biggest sushi seller in the U.S.? Answer to follow and I think you’ll be surprised!

After two weeks of high school football action several area teams appear to be headed to playoff and league title considerations. Troy and Xenia are off to great starts in the Miami Valley League; Dixie, Tri-Village, and Ansonia are all 2-0 in the Western Ohio Athletic Conference; Southwest Buckeye League members Brookville, Carlisle, Eaton, Madison, and Valley View are all undefeated; and in the always powerful Midwest Athletic Conference 2-0 teams include Coldwater, Marion Local, Minster, Delphos St. John’s, and Versailles. Should be great viewing for football fans as the season starts to heat up!!

News from Cincinnati—the Reds are struggling after losing three of four in Phoenix to the Diamondbacks, falling six games behind the Brewers in the NL Central and a game and a half behind Arizona for the third wildcard berth. David Bell’s squad needs to have a strong finish to become playoff bound. Also, will Joe Burrow be ready to lead the Bengals against the Browns in the first game of the NFL regular season on September the 10th? He still hasn’t participated in a full practice since pulling a calf muscle almost four weeks ago—he also hasn’t signed a new contract which might be even more worrisome!

From today’s politically correct corner—there appears to be a movement to rename Wayne National Forest in Southeast Ohio, changing it to Buckeye National Forest instead. Evidently General Anthony Wayne has come under criticism for his “campaign of violence” in the 1790s, which led to the Treaty of Greenville and opened the Northwest Territory to settlement and the eventual formation of the states of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, and Michigan. His reputation is also under scrutiny for having been ousted from the US House of Representatives for election fraud (does history repeat itself or what?) and for having an alleged tryst with the wife of his friend and military compatriot General Nathanael Greene (as in Fort Greeneville!).

Raw fish you wonder? Kroger’s grocery chain sells an estimated $400-600 million worth annually. Pass the wasabi sauce!! Have a great week!