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Playoffs and poor sportsmanship are both in the picture

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Mike's Minute

By Mike Aldridge

The NFL playoffs are now down to the last four teams and there are some big surprises.  
No doubt the biggest surprise is the Jets beating the Patriots, especially since Bill Belichick is a genius according to the east coast sportswriters and major television announcers.  
The Patriots were really never in this game after the first Jet score as their offense sputtered all over the field much to the dismay of the home crowd.
The Jets’ defense could have had something to do with the apparent ineptness of the Patriots, but it certainly wasn’t the total problem. Anyway, one big upset as the Patriots were a nine point favorite in the game.  
The other game was not an upset in fact the Bears covered the spread to the delight of who ever took them and the points.
Being the home team has not been a big factor in this year’s playoffs as this weekend half of the home teams won and in the wildcard games only one home team won and that was the upset of the year at Seattle on Jan. 8.  
I do not know anyone who picked the Saints to lose that game and in fact know a whole lot of people who spoke of how ridiculous it was to have a team with a losing record in the playoffs.  
Of course, the Steelers won their game at home as they will this week against the Jets.  
It was much more difficult in fact to beat the Ravens than I believe it will be to beat the Jets. The Packers are the team that has really been impressive so far winning twice on the road with only one more road victory before they arrive in Dallas for the Super Bowl.  
I am picking Green Bay though I will be for the Bears. If the Bears had anyone but Jay Cutler at quarterback I would pick them to win, but he is just too inconsistent.  
He is a Hoosier though from Santa Claus, Ind., and Heritage Hills High School. He also is an SEC player hailing from Vanderbilt.  
Of the four quarterbacks left, only Sanchez of the Jets is a bigger question mark than Cutler. We will see what happens, but it looks like a black and gold champion again this year.
Sportsmanship is something I know I have written about more than once in my Minute.  
However, I can’t let a couple of incidents pass without a comment.
The coach of the seventh grade team from Royal Springs should be ashamed of himself for being thrown out of a seventh grade basketball game, but the bigger issue is that the eighth grade coach took his team home without playing because the officials correctly would not let the ejected coach sit on the bench for the eighth grade game.   
The players from Royal Springs certainly learned a lesson that night.
That lesson was not one of sportsmanship, but just the opposite. The lesson was not to follow the rules, but if you have to follow them, take your ball and go home.  
Three last notes; Congratulations to Coach Mac Whitaker as National Coach of the Year; let’s make it two in a row, Also, congratulations to Joyce Clifford, who was the Let’s Talk Sports’ Sportsperson of the Year. And Good-bye to Randall Cobb.  Good Luck and I hope you are a Steeler.