Random ruminations while wondering whatever happened to Samari Rolle…
- The Titans did the right thing by allowing former star linebacker Keith Bulluck to retire as a Titan.
He earned it. One of the most popular Titans ever, Bulluck was a true professional. I covered his 11 years with the franchise. Not once did he refuse to face the media music after the most difficult losses. Not only would he answer all the questions, he did so with meaningful and thoughtful insight. If you were part of the media, Keith Bulluck was the gold standard.
Keith Bulluck got it. It is why he excelled on and off the field and was always a credit to the franchise.
Asked Friday how he wanted to be remembered, Bulluck smiled. “A beast. I was a beast,'' he said. He played hard. He played smart. He was a student of the game, making it pay off on Sunday, or the Monday Night Football game in which he had three interceptions and earned the nickname, “Mr. Monday Night Football.''
“I have had the privilege to have coached some very good players in my 27 years in the league and Keith Bulluck fits in the upper tier of that group,'' said former Titans defensive assistant Dave McGinnis. “Keith always answered the bell. … Week after week and year after year. The biggest compliment you can give an athlete who plays a sport for a living is to say, “He is a pro.' You are a professional when you get paid to play, but you are a pro when you play the game for more than money.
“Keith Bulluck is a pro.''
- The new star of the London Olympics has been double gold medal gymnast Gabby Douglas, a high-energy 16-year-old whose smile, personality and ability is going to make her a rich young woman over the next four years.
Expect endorsement offers to bombard the teen gymnast who is called by many, the Flying Squirrel. It was a nickname given her by Team USA's national coordinator Martha Karoli.
She is expected to earn $10 million over the next four years. This will be made possible after winning a gold for the women's all-around and leading Team USA to the team gold medal.
When she was 14, Gabby wanted to move from her home in Virginia Beach, going half-way across the country to train under Liang Chow. It was Chow who coached Shawn Johnson to gold in 2008.
Her mother had to be convinced by Gabby's two older sisters to let her baby move away. It now looks like the move was instrumental in her development as a relatively unknown national gymnast to the best in the world.
- The old star of the London Olympics has been swimmer Michael Phelps. He concluded a golden Olympics career Saturday with 22 medals, an incredible 18 of them gold.
Phelps has been on nine relay teams that captured a medal and he will go down in American Olympic history as the greatest swimmer in his and previous eras.
Phelps has been hitting the finish line first for four Olympiads, an incredible mix of talent and endurance.
It was the final time we will see Phelps in the pool, but he left us with a scrapbook full of memories.
- I'm not sure we will ever see Florida State League umpire Mario Seneca in the big leagues. Talk about thin-skinned. Seneca must have over-indulged in dollar hot dog night before the game at Jackie Robinson Park in Daytona Beach last week.
Give a man a little authority and, well, he will sometimes abuse it.
Derek Dye, a college student who was interning for the Daytona Beach Cubs, chose to play Three Blind Mice over the PA system after a disputed play went against the Cubs.
Seneca turned to the press box and tossed the kid out. Moreover, he ordered them to cut off the sound system for the rest of the game, won by Daytona Beach, 2-1.
A fan in the stands stood up and introduced the players at bat and on the mound. Dye, became an instant hit on the intranet for getting the boot.
Seneca needs to get a grip. If he went ballistic in a Class A minor league game played before less than 1,000 fans, no telling what he would do in the big leagues. But, then, I don't think we will ever have to worry about seeing him work anything higher than a Little League game.
If Seneca is looking for a non-confrontational, quiet work environment, I would suggest he should apply at a funeral home.
- Saturday marked Day 8 of the 16-day London Olympics and from across the pond, it appears it has been a huge success at the halfway mark.
There have been endless storylines. A double amputee from South Africa ran his 400-meter heat on his prosthetic blades. Tennis superstar Serena Williams completed the rare feat of having won all four pro tennis majors and an Olympics gold medal.
A 15-year-old American swimmer struck gold, after 17-year-old Missy Franklin showed her how it is done.
And when basketball's Team USA (Dream Team lite) escaped with a come-from-behind 99-94 win against Lithuania, all that chatter dried up about how this team would have beaten the 1992 Dream Team. The real Dream Team.
- Columbia's Dan Uggla, the Atlanta Braves All-Star second baseman, is among league leaders in two categories you might not expect.
He is tied for the lead in base on balls (66) and has 118 strikeouts, which is among the National League leaders for that dubious distinction.
A power hitter who has never hit for a high average, Uggla has proven to be a valuable acquisition for the Braves.
It is rare for a strikeout leader to also have as many base on balls as Uggla. Only nine major league players have earned the double distinction of leading the league in both categories in one season.
If Uggla should pull it off, he would join Babe Ruth, who did it four times, Yankees great Mickey Mantle and Braves icon Dale Murphy. Also in that class are former Phillies slugger Mike Schmidt and Jason Giambi.
White Sox slugger Adam Dunn leads the majors in strikeouts and home runs. Mr. Feast or Famine.
Got a sports news tip? Contact Sports Columnist Joe Biddle at firstname.lastname@example.org.