Mandy Mitchell

The Mitchell Report: Taft, a bat and a 4-point half

Posted January 27, 2013

This will serve as my weekly column for notes about things I find interesting outside the Triangle. Enjoy my insights. I will enjoy sharing them ..

Thoughts of Izzy

Sorry to begin with such sad news. Raleigh native and Mets catcher Landon Powell lost his  5-month old baby daughter over the weekend. Powell's daughter, Izzy,  died of an immune disease which attacked her liver. Powell, who was drafted in 2004, has signed a minor league deal with the New York Mets organization as he prepares for spring training.

Bat Attack

It was an interesting afternoon in Milwaukee as a  bat interrupted the Marquette vs Providence game. The game was delayed several times as the bat flew down by the court, nearly hitting a player at one point. Some teams may want to consider letting a bird/mammal loose during games to make them more interesting.

A 4-point half

Northern Illinois should definitely think about my bat suggestion. The NIU men's basketball team set an NCAA Division 1 record for scoring just 4 points in the first half against Eastern Michigan. That kind of performance actually takes some effort. Just how do you only score 4 points in a half? You miss 29 consecutive shots on your way to a record 3.2% from the field. NIU's coach said after the game his guys were not taking bad shots, they just weren't going in. You think?

Taft it is

The Nationals unveiled their much anticipated new "racing president" this weekend. William Howard Taft   is the winner! Taft beat out a bunch of other rather comical candidates. He was the first president to ever throw out a ceremonial first pitch and he is credited with accidentally starting the seventh-inning stretch, so I guess I understand why the Nationals chose him. I am disappointed to see the actual costume, though. With risk of sounding disrespectful to our former president, wasn't Taft...well...fat? I would be a lot more excited about this if they made the Taft really huge. That being said, seeing the presidents race is definitely on my "sports to-do" list. I'm still going to be rooting for Teddy, however.


In case you weren't clear on this, football is a big deal in Nebraska. A state trooper in the state confirmed that when he made a traffic stop this week. A potential Husker player was on his way to an official visit when he was pulled over. The police officer let him off with a warning, but not without a lecture on what it means to be a Cornhusker. The guy is a kicker so he probably should've just given him the ticket.



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  • VT1994Hokie Jan 29, 2013

    Sad one indeed about the Powell child. Prayers for all family members.

  • cjw6105 Jan 28, 2013

    The 4-point half is more about the shot clock than anything else. Although instilled with all good intentions, the (now) 35-second clock has completely changed the college game, punishing skill and teamwork and instead rewarding talent.

    I got a good look at what the shot clock did during the Sendek era at State. Teams with marginal to no talent couldn't generate offense against more talented teams, and ended up throwing the ball around for half a minute before being forced to hoist bad shots. You can check the stats since the mid-1980s, and you'll see that college shooting percentages AND scoring have both declined. Also declining is the number of Cinderella teams that make the Elite Eight or beyond in the NCAAT each year.

    In short, the shot clock has made the college game more like the NBA, and to me that's a BAD thing.

  • zonk Jan 28, 2013

    So sorry for the Powell family.

  • StunGunn Jan 28, 2013

    Prayers to the Powell family, we're not supposed to bury our children, especially a baby. The other stories in this piece were entertaining, but the sadness over what the Powell family must be going through overshadow everything.

  • Toddler10-21 Jan 28, 2013

    Thoughts, and prayers go out to the Powell family!

  • BattlingBishop 5 Jan 27, 2013

    Condolences to the Powell family.

  • Yachting: America’s Cup

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