No news is good news

How much would you pay for James Franklin's autograph? / Columbia Missourian

Did you hear the big news coming out of the Kansas City Chiefs training camp?

Me neither. Unless you consider the recent signing of Semaj Moody big news.

Semaj Who?


What about the Rams? Nothing.

The Missouri Tigers? More nothing.

But sometimes, no news is good news.

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None of our teams, however, are dealing with the loss of a player who's been arrested and charged with first-degree murder. Or saying something so racially insensitive, he had to leave the team for "sensitivity" counseling --- although the ladder received just about as much attention as the guy charged with murder.

Go figure.

There have been no suspensions, or talk of suspensions, for players using performance-enhancing drugs. Of course, if our teams DID have that cloud hanging over them, they should get their money back.

There has been no "autograph-gate" involving our college quarterback. What would you pay for James Franklin's John Hancock, anyway? He's our very own Jimmy Football, after all.

Same here. Franklin's autograph and a buck would get you a sandwich on the dollar menu.

Instead, here's what we've gotten from the Chiefs, Rams and Tigers to this point.

"We're working hard every day."

"We just want to take it one day at a time and get better every day."

"We're making progress, but we have a long way to go."

"Blah, blah, blah."

These comments are interchangeable from camp to camp to camp. But then, just over eight months ago, the Chiefs were dealing with the murder-suicide case of Jovan Belcher.

There's certainly something to be said for blah, blah, blah.

While the start of football season is still weeks away, the state of Major League Baseball in Missouri is status quo. One team is winning --- 12 out of the last 13 --- and the other team is losing --- 9 out of 12.

This status quo, however, has a 180-degree twist --- it's the Royals who are winning and the Cardinals who are losing, at least in the past two weeks.

In their 28th year of rebuilding, perhaps the Royals have finally gotten it right. They recently had a nine-game winning streak, their longest in 10 years, and they're just four games out of a wildcard playoff berth. One game ahead of the Yankees, by the way. (Smile here. :o) At the very least, the Royals are poised to finish over .500 for just the second time in 19 years.

Some news is good news.

The Cardinals have been scuffling, including a recent seven-game losing streak. But in their championship season of 2011, they also had a seven-game losing streak; in 2006, they had a seven-game losing streak and two EIGHT-game losing streaks. The season lasts six months and 162 games --- baseball happens.

Just make the Fall Party and anything can happen --- and the Cardinals still have a nine-game lead in the wildcard race.

But before the baseball postseason starts, we will have football games that actually count. Here's a quick outlook at our teams:

* The Chiefs have a proven winner in head coach Andy Reid, it just may take a year for it to show --- the Eagles went 5-11 in his first year in Philadelphia, 11-5 in his second. They also have a proven winner in quarterback Alex Smith, to go along with an NFL-high six Pro-Bowlers from last season. Which begs the question --- how can a team with that much talent go 2-14? Romeo, Romeo, where for art thou Romeo? Wherever you are, please stay there.

* The Rams are also under the direction of a proven winner in Jeff Fisher. It took Fisher six years to produce a winning record, however, with the Houston Oilers/Tennessee Titans. The NFC West will prove too tough for the Rams to make much improvement from last year's 7-8-1 mark. Of note, Fisher and Reid --- who sport two of the league's finest moustaches --- were born 22 days apart in 1958. That is what you'd call a worthless fact. Or two of them.

* The Tigers are entering their second season in the SEC. Last year's expectations were sky high and they're not rock-bottom this year ... yet. But the fanfare is not there and expectations are minimal. Remember the celebration that was MU's first SEC game against Georgia? It was New Year's Eve, Cinco de Mayo and your 21st birthday, all wrapped up into one. This year, the buzz has all the passion of Flag Day. Franklin's health is more fragile than the ego of a teen-age girl with acne. A .500 record and a trip to a lousy bowl game, however, should be good enough to save Gary Pinkel's job for 2014.

One last thing ... who is Semaj Moody, anyway? He's a cornerback, a product of South Carolina State. Last year, he played for the AFL's Chicago Rush.

Who? Exactly.

Sometimes, no news is no news.