Hefferon: Parting predictions
Jack Hefferon | Tuesday, April 29, 2014
They’re not lying; the time really does fly.
I started writing columns in this space with the original Sports Authority crew three years ago, and now here I sit, writing the last one of my academic career.
Through those three years of columns, I’ve written some stuff I’m really proud of and some absolute garbage. I’ve missed well more than my fair share of deadlines (and in the name of consistency, sent this last column in late as well. Sorry, team). I’m still not convinced that anyone actually reads this far into the paper.
But through three years, I’ve leaned on one column more than any other: the bold prediction column. It’s lazy, egotistical and useless, but easy to write in a hurry. I’ve never gone out and actually guaranteed anything in these columns, but I get to unearth any predictions that did pan out and rub them in your face. (Guess who has two thumbs and picked Kentucky to make a run in the tournament?)
However, in the spirit of consistency, indulge me one last time:
Johnny Football goes high, then fades
Now that Tim Tebow’s days in the NFL have come and gone, the ESPN-fueled spotlight seems to be centered solely on Manziel, whose Pro Day garnered more attention on SportsCenter than all of the entire Stanley Cup Playoffs put together. That buzz has kicked up relentless rumors about Johnny Football’s landing spot in the upcoming NFL Draft and many seem to have him going in the first round.
In auctions, there’s a phenomenon called the winner’s curse, which states that the bidder that wins the item probably did so because they bid too much. One NFL club will dream up similarly high hopes for Manziel and reach to draft him, only to find that he’s a specialist at best and only a high-profile backup.
Michael Bradley becomes the face of U.S. Soccer
Unless you’re one of the people who watched qualifying for the upcoming World Cup and can immediately name the group the U.S. will play in come June, when you think U.S. Soccer, you picture Landon Donovan. However, the aging striker will be entering his fourth — and likely last — World Cup, and has seen limited action during the American qualifying run. Donovan will still be the emotional leader on this squad, and Clint Dempsey has absolutely torn up the MLS so far this season, but the World Cup will make Bradley and his aggressive, fan-friendly style familiar to households across the country.
My friends all stay connected after graduation and meet up together once a year (minimum)
Okay, now we’re getting into the real world — and possibly wishful thinking. Notre Dame allows us to form a working infrastructure for the rest of our lives, and for many of us that foundation lies heavily on the basis of friendship. But with friends chasing their new lives everywhere from South Bend to Washington to Micronesia and most places in between, the thought of when the next time us seniors will see the groups we pose for graduation photos with — if there is a next time at all — is a terrifying prospect.
Luckily, we’ll learn to embrace our lives as bitter alumni and make it back to campus to complain about the ugly new FieldTurf sometime next fall.
You will survive your finals
I swear. This next week and a half will be a whirlwind with dozens of emotions, all of them stressful and exhausting. But you’ve made it this far, and that means you’re more than capable of getting past whatever this week can throw at you. Take a breath, buckle down, study outside if it ever stops raining and know that a couple hours of sleep beats an all-nighter every time. You’ve got this; this week and a half will be over before you know it, and then summer awaits.
And if the thing you’re most stressed about is the very prospect of these last few days flying by, then I’ll be right there with you, trying to cherish every last second I get in this unreal place before real life begins.
And that’s not a prediction. That’s a guarantee.
The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.