The Hot Read: Strong Sandwich

So what’s in a Charlie Strong sandwich? We find out today when Champions Sports Bar and Grill at the Marriott Downtown unveils its Charlie Strong sandwich.

Proceeds from sales will benefit Kosair Children’s Hospital. The restaurant hasn’t leaked word of the sandwich’s contents, but I’m betting most U of L players won’t be allowed to eat it.

The first-year Cardinals coach has had most of them on a strict nutritional regimen all summer. I’m guessing the McDonald’s on campus has been feeling it in the pocketbook. I’ve told the story of my daughter trying to unload some extra girl scout cookies at the complex, only to be told by one player, “We can’t. Coach has us on a diet.”

For the first time, the team has had training table all summer.

It’s the beginning of a short charity blitz before preseason camp begins for Strong, who also will do a fundraiser on July 26 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Team in Training. More to come on that.

NCAA at UNC

Headlines from Chapel Hill yesterday as reports surfaced that the NCAA is investigating two Tar Heels football players’ possible connections with sports agents. UNC athletic director Dick Baddour told the Raleigh News & Observer that the department was cooperating fully with the NCAA and warned against jumping to conclusions. Regardless, it points to this possibility — that some of the questioning of University of Kentucky basketball players may be part of a wider net being cast by NCAA enforcement.

Dead wrong

If you’re in this business long enough, you make a mistake that wakes you up at night for years. I made one such mistake early on in my career. I’ll tell you about it in a moment. Pete Fiutak of College Football News of the Scout Network made one yesterday. In a Notre Dame preview, he wrote a nice paragraph about new recruit Matt James’ chances for playing time. Which would be something, since James died in April after a fall from a third-floor hotel balcony. ‘Her Loyal Sons’ blog runs it down.

My mistake? I was in my first few months as a full-time reporter at the now-defunct Evansville (Evening) Press, putting together a city girls’ basketball season preview. I had tried and tried to get hold of one of the team’s coaches, but never could, so I fudged it and just wrote some general paragraphs about what the team had done the previous season and the leaders coming back. One problem. One of those leaders wasn’t coming back. She was pregnant. That’s an awkward conversation. Fortunately I had a forgiving boss, whose need for cheap labor may well have outweighed his sense of embarrassment at the time.

Finally on this, some blog confessions from perhaps the nation’s best sports columnist. Joe Posnanski outlines three of his biggest screw-ups.

Title game on the Tundra?

A couple of days after Soldier Field in Chicago reportedly expressed interest in playing host to a Big Ten title game, ESPN.com reports that Lambeau Field in Green Bay might also get into the mix.

Detroit’s Ford Field, Cleveland Browns Stadium and Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis are other sites that have been thrown out as possibilities. David Gilbert, president of the Greater Cleveland Sports Commission, said that the Big Ten shouldn’t limit itself to indoor sites or worry about cold weather. “This is not SEC football,” he told the Ohio Morning Journal. “This is Big Ten football. The weather is part of the game.” Now that’s cold.

Programming note

Louisville’s Sept. 18 game at Oregon State will be televised by Fox Sports Northwest. Don’t bother consulting your cable listings for it. It isn’t there. The game will kick off at 5:30 p.m. Eastern.

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