Random ruminations while wondering whatever happened to Craig Puki…
- Most amateur and professional athletes cherish proof of their highest accomplishments that come in the form of championship trophies, plaques and rings.
Others unload such objects later in life. Some need the money they bring. Others have various reasons.
Hall of Fame pitcher Jim Palmer says he wants to help his grandchildren obtain a college education. He also has an autistic stepson who will require special care the rest of his life.
Palmer holds those requirements above all the honors he won during his 19-year major league career.
Currently working as an analyst for the Baltimore Orioles, Palmer is offering an array of hardware at auction.
Cy Young Awards he won in 1973, 1975 and 1976 will go at live auction, as Hunt Auctions have the items online and over the telephone through today for those awards in addition to his two Gold Glove Awards.
A live auction is set for Tuesday.
A percentage of the profits will be given to the autism project of Palm Beach County.
Palmer joins a list of Hall of Fame members to put their items up for auction, among them Joe DiMaggio and Ted Williams.
Several years ago, Palmer was in Colorado at a cystic fibrosis fundraiser. He put up a Gold Glove, a Cy Young, a round of golf at a country club and four seats to an Orioles game, back when the team was better than it is now.
“There was a gentleman who had a daughter with cystic fibrosis who paid $39,000 for that and never ever took it,'' Palmer told the Associated Press. “It was for the cause.''
- Vikings veteran running back Adrian Peterson would be low on my list of an NFL player who would be forced to cool his heels in jail.
The star running back was arrested and charged with resisting arrest as Houston police were clearing a nightclub early Saturday morning. According to unofficial reports, Peterson wanted to get a drink of water before leaving as officers requested.
The police said Peterson pushed one of them. One report was that Peterson had to be tackled. I understand from unreliable sources that six NFL teams offered the officer that was able to take Peterson down a guaranteed contract.
In fact, the police report indicated it took three officers to subdue and handcuff Peterson.
Peterson is recovering from knee surgery so maybe he's less than full speed.
- Another sort of famous name was recently arrested for resisting arrest, disorderly conduct and obstructing.
Marcus Jordan, whose father Michael played some basketball in his career, was involved in an argument involving two women in front of an Omaha hotel.
Jordan is a rising senior at Central Florida, where he averaged 13.7 points last season. The arrest took place at 2:11 a.m. Officers indicated Jordan was animated, intoxicated and uncooperative.
- I hope I'm not the only one growing weary of speculation as to where Orlando Magic star Dwight Howard will land?
This soap opera has played on way too long, to the point that I couldn't care less where he goes. Just go, Dwight. Go.
- No surprise here that Ryan Suter broke the Predators' hearts. Too many factors were working for Suter to sign with Minnesota, too many game changing factors.
Suter probably would downplay the factor that his wife, Becky, is from Bloomington, Minn., and wanted to be closer to home. Believe me, if the wife isn't happy, ain't no one happy.
Suter also gets to play with his pal, Zach Parise, who along with Suter formed the two best free agents on the market, and now thanks to twin contracts given by Wild owner Craig Leipold, the two richest.
The signings immediately paid dividends for the Wild. Just under 1,000 season tickets were sold within hours of the breaking news. The 4th of July bombshell took that total to more than 1,500 in less than one day.
It was out of Predators GM David Poile's hands. Once the possibility of Parise and Suter playing together became reality, it was over. It had nothing to do with Nashville or the Predators.
Suter and Parise were teammates on the team that won the World Junior Championship and later as members of the 2010 Winter Olympics silver medal team.
Wild star Dany Heatley reached out to Suter, as he preceded Suter at the University of Wisconsin's college hockey power. That didn't hurt.
Poile can get other defensemen to replace Suter. He needs goal scorers. Pronto. And they are scarce in the free agent market, prompting a serious look at making a trade.
- Maybe South Carolina Coach Steve Spurrier had a premonition when he told the media that he preferred playing rival Georgia early in the season because as Spurrier noted, they always had some players suspended for the first couple of games.
So when running back Isaiah Crowell was booted from the team after being caught with an illegal firearm in his possession, Spurrier seemed to have Extrasensory Perception.
Crowell still faces charges, but has transferred to Division I-AA Alabama State and will be eligible immediately. He was a 5-star recruit out of Columbus (Ga.) Carver and was SEC Freshman of the Year.
- There was a commentary piece on Joe Paterno's connection with the Jerry Sandusky child molestation case. It ran in the San Antonio Express-Mail newspaper.
Right below the last paragraph of the article was an ad that asked readers, “Will You Enjoy a Safe Shower Today? If not call us.''
Sandusky was found guilty of showering with several young boys and sexually assaulting them.
Ads are placed on what papers call page dummies and the editors and layout people fill the rest of the page with copy.
I can believe it wasn't intentional on the paper's behalf, but someone was asleep at the wheel for allowing the page to go to print with the ad on it.
The owner of Safe Showers, called it “a stretch,'' to connect the two items. Maybe he has stayed in the shower too long.
Paterno doesn't come out looking altogether innocent in documents that were recently acquired on the case.
- One of the most complete college football websites is Paul Myerberg's presnapread.com.
Myerberg is currently releasing his forecasts for each one of the 124 Division I football teams.
He starts at the bottom, works his way up the ladder. Myerberg released team No. 66 Saturday. It was Louisiana-Lafayette, the team Tennessee hired Derek Dooley from.
Some other teams of interest include Vanderbilt, ranked No. 63 by Myerberg. He predicts Vanderbilt will become the first team in school history to record back-to-back bowl seasons under Coach James Franklin.
He lauds Franklin's quick start out of the blocks in changing the culture of Vanderbilt football last season. He also recognizes Franklin's ability to land recruits that other top SEC teams offered scholarships.
Trailing Vanderbilt is Ole Miss (No. 93) and Kentucky (No. 96).
Western Kentucky is No. 85 and Coach Willie Taggart's team opens the season with Austin Peay then travels to Alabama and in-state rival Kentucky.
- How, you ask, could former Louisville and interim football coach John L. Smith be filing for bankruptcy?
He claims he lost his shirt and other articles of clothing in several real estate deals.
It will be interesting to see if Smith has success with an Arkansas team that is loaded with talent. His offensive mind is as sharp as anyone's and the Hogs will likely be a preseason top 10 pick, perhaps top 5, if voters think Smith can measure up to fired coach Bobby Petrino in the coaching arena.
Got a sports story tip? Contact Sports Columnist Joe Biddle at firstname.lastname@example.org.