Category Archives: Bree Schaaf

High school athletics need a little promotion, too

Friday Night Lights

Even though I’m retired, they’re keeping me around for the high school football picks. I think the staff wants somebody they can beat up on, but I’m gonna do my homework. Check out my picks here. Better yet, check out a local game. Week 1 of the high school season is upon us.

Attendance at high school sporting events has dwindled over the years, and that’s too bad. The days are gone when the majority of students put on their letter jackets (do they still have letter jackets?) and abused their vocal cords in the name of the home team. You’d go to a game and both sides of the stands were full and people lined up around the track. A full house during the regular-season is now a rarity.

We’re now in the era of club sports, but football is the one high school sport that hasn’t changed much over the years in that regard. It’s the start of a new school year, and a successful football season can go a long ways toward having a successful school year. A football team, more than anything, can pull a school and a community together. It can be a really cool experience for everyone. There are people who support high school athletics. They go to games long after their own kids have graduated, but the majority of parents don’t do that. Schools and coaches need to promote it. Get the word out. Form a booster club. Talk to pee wee coaches and athletes. Hold a pep assembly and encourage students to show up. Blast out emails to parents and service clubs. We’re way past the era where you just turned on the lights, and people showed up to watch the game. If the schools don’t think it’s important, then why should the fans?

Olympic League and Narrows League tickets are $6 for adults, $4 for seniors (over 65) and elementary students. Students with ASB cards get free admission to home games; it’s $4 on the road with ASB card.

Baseball Numbers

.347: That’s what Willie Bloomquist was hitting going into Thursday’s  Wednesday’s game. Granted, it’s a small sample, just 30 games, because of two long stints on the disabled list. The Arizona Diamondbacks shortstop is 9-for-16 since being activated on Aug. 30. It’s the final year of Bloomquist’s contract, and manager Kirk Gibson’s a big Bloomquist fan, but the Diamondbacks are loaded at the position. Cliff Pennington’s under contract for another year, rookie Didi Gregorius has had a good year, and  Chris Owing, the 2013 PCL MVP, is waiting in the wings. Bloomquist, 35, has said he wants to play until he’s 40. UPDATE: Bloomquist was 3-for-5 with an RBI on Wednesday, pushing his average to .355.

.274: That’s what Drew Vettleson wound up hitting in the regular season for the Port Charlotte Stone Crabs of the High-A Florida State League. The Central Kitsap grad, the 42nd overall pick by the Tampa Bay Rays in 2010, was up to .284, but had 1-for-19 funk over his final five games. The Stone Crabs are currently in the postseason. The Florida State League was a pitcher’s league as only two players hit .300 or better. Vettleson, the Ray’s 10th-best prospect according to, was 17th in the league in hitting, so his numbers weren’t bad. The right-fielder hit .228 against lefties and .295 against right-handers.

Seahawks Numbers

For my weekly Thursday column, I took a look at some Seahawks numbers. 

Drug Testing

The always-entertaining Bremerton bobsledder Bree Schaaf wrote about drug testing on her Team USA Blog and it’s an interesting look through the eyes of an Olympic athlete.



SK Wolves camping at Fort Worden; Villwock back in the sport; Seahawks, Huskies, WCL & more

The South Kitsap Wolves have stolen a page from the highly-successful Bellevue Wolverines, the state football powerhouse that has won 10 Class 3A state football championships and been recognized as one of the premier programs in the country.

Bellevue coach Butch Goncharoff has been bringing the Wolverines to Fort Worden State Park in Port Townsend for a week-long camp since 2002.

South Kitsap coach Eric Canton has his Wolves at Fort Worden this week. They arrived Sunday afternoon and will leave Wednesday. I spent a good part of the day with the Wolves on Monday observing and talking to coaches and players. You can read the story on Sunday.

Quick hits

Dave Villwock retired as a driver, but the all-time winningest pilot in hydroplane history didn’t take long to find a team to work with. He’s working with the Beacon Plumbing team and will be in Seattle for the Seafair races this weekend.. It’s not quite as well funded as some of his past teams.

“Right now we’re using an old propellor that I think was used to hold a door open,” Villwock told the Tri-City Herald at last weekend’s races in Pasco. “But I think Bill Cahill (the owner of Beacon Plumbing) wants to commit more money.”

So wide receiver Percy Harvin is going to have surgery to repair his injured hip, and there’s no timetable for his return. Not only was he supposed to be a big part of the Seattle Seahawks’ offense, but he was expected to return kicks, which is why Leon Washington is no longer with the Hawks. Leon signed with the Patriots. He’s going to be a tough guy to replace. He also returned punts and was a threat to take it to the house every time he touched the ball. WR Golden Tate and cornerback Walter Thurmond are two potential candidates to handle return duties.

The Washington Huskies kicked defensive end Pio Vituvei off the team for violating team rules, coach Steve Sarkisian announced on Tuesday. Vituvei was a sophomore who played in nine games as a true freshman.

Which brings me to John McGrath’s column on how Sarkisian has handled the Austin Seferian-Jenkins situation. The Tacoma News Tribune columnist thinks he should have made a decision one way or the other a long time ago. He writes:

“For somebody who wants his team to hurry up in every phase, Huskies coach Steve Sarkisian is setting a curious example. There’s an issue he must resolve, and he’s plodding over it at the approximate speed of a grocery-store line on Thanksgiving Eve.”

In case you missed it, you can read my Q&A with Dick Baird, the former UW recruiting coordinator and Husky assistant who now works as a broadcast analyst for KJR radio.

SK senior Logan Knowles, one of the top all-around athletes in the area, visited the Naval Academy in January and could end up playing baseball for the Middies. It’s not a done deal, but he’s leaning in that direction, said his dad, Mark Knowles, the affable Gold Mountain Golf Club pro. Logan Knowles shared backup quarterback duties with Cooper Canton a year ago, but has been moved to wide receiver on offense. He’s also a returning starter in the secondary. Knowles was one of the unsung heroes for the South Kitsap baseball team that reached the Class 4A title game a year ago.

New West Coast League president Dennis Koho was a visitor at the Kitsap BlueJackets game on Monday night. Koho headed to Wenatchee on Tuesday to complete his goal of visiting all 11 WCL teams. I talked to Koho via phone and met him briefly at the ballpark. Koho, the WCL and the BlueJackets will be the subject of my Thursday column.

Bremerton’s Bree Schaaf and other U.S. bobsled drivers will compete from the driver push bar in a competition on Friday, August 2, in Calgary. Coaches will select driver and push athlete combinations based on results for a series of race-offs on Saturday. Elana Meyers and Nick Cunningham are the respective women’s and men’s defending champions in the driver push category. The U.S. National Push Championships is the first official competition of the 2013-2014 season.  The next step in team selections will be a series of races on the Lake Placid, N.Y. and Park City, Utah tracks in October. Schaaf, an Olympian who finished fifth at the 2010 Games, is trying to fight her way back on the team. She had  hip surgery to repair a torn labrum and wasn’t fully recovered this time a year ago.

South Kitsap grad Brady Steiger got his first professional hit on Tuesday (July 30) for the Gulf Coast League Yankees. The former Lewis-Clark State star, a second-team NAIA All-American, recently signed with the Yankees while playing for the Seattle Studs. He saw his first game action on Tuesday. He was the designated hitter and went 1-for-5.

Silverdale’s Erynne Lee will tee it up in the U.S. Women’s Amateur Aug. 5-11 at the Country Club of Charleston (S.C.). Lee, a junior-to-be at UCLA, earned an exemption after being a member of 2012 USA World Amateur Team, a member of 2013 USA Copa de las Americas Team and a quarterfinalist at last year’s Women’s Amateur. Lee’s been a semifinalist (2008) and medalist (2010) of this tournament, in addition to reaching the quarterfinals three times.


If this is Christmas …

Why am I talking to Terry Mosher on Christmas about story ideas while waiting for our Texas designers to finish up the scoreboard page? Does Terry Mosher ever take a day off? Terry Mosher has spread a lot of good will in our pages over the years. I get asked all of the time how you subscribe to The Sports Paper Weekly that Mosher produces. OK, listen up: Call 360-792-9222 and say you want to subscribe. It’ll cost you $1.50 a week.

If this is Christmas, and it still is — at least for a couple more hours — why am I thinking about that two-week trip I’ve got planned to Arizona in mid-March?

And a couple of buddies tell me that it’s only 33 days until the Waste Management Phoenix Open. This PGA Tour event is golf’s version of the Georgia-Florida tailgate party. Sounds like fun, and you get to watch a little golf, too. It’s on the Bucket List. This year? I’m a definite maybe.

And if this is Christmas — and you know it is because the NBA’s the only game going on — then why didn’t I know that Nate Robinson was with the Chicago Bulls? And why doesn’t he play more. Nate scored 28 points in 27 minutes in a loss, and I just looked and saw where he bust loose for 12 of his 18 points in the fourth quarter last week while helping the Bulls beat the Boston Celtics. “I had to go back to my whole Peter Pan theory, man. You can’t fight without happy thoughts,” Nate said after that win.

And what’s holding up that scoreboard page, anyway? I can get home at a decent hour. I might have time to watch the ending of It’s a Wonderful Life. Fell asleep last night. What a wonderful movie. I asked my wife what it was about Jimmy Stewart that made him such a lady killer. “His charm,” she said. “He’s so charming.”

Saw that Washington might be losing another assistant coach from the offensive side of the ball. Joel Thomas, the former Port Angeles and Idaho star, took a job with Arkansas over the weekend. Good for Joel. Good guy and he must have done something right after working with Chris Polk for three seasons and Bishop Sankey this past year. The latest to go? Wide receiver coach Jimmie Dougherty is reportedly going to be the offensive coordinator at San Jose State. He was the OC at San Diego before coming to the UW and is getting back together with Ron Caragher, the former San Diego coach who is now at SJS.

It’s pretty quiet in The Sun newsroom tonight. Me and Herron Miller, who is putting the rest of the paper together. Reporter Amy Phan was in earlier. Other that that, it’s been eerily quiet. Which is a good thing because who wants to cover a big, breaking news story on Christmas Day.

There’s still plates full of cookies about 15 steps away, but somebody, please stick a fork in me. I’m done.

I think I heard the roar of the crowd at CenturyLink in Illahee Sunday night. I couldn’t make the game, but I wasn’t going to miss it. I jumped on the bandwagon after viewing the 58-0 demolition of the Cardinals. They followed it up with a 50-17 win over Buffalo, and tacked on a stunning 42-13 win over San Francisco that has put visions of Russell Wilson dancing in all of our heads. The only worry from here is did the-team-that-nobody-wants-to-play peak too soon? There’s still a week left in the regular season, then the Seahawks will have to stay hot for three more weeks to get to the Super Bowl. But if you ask me who I think will win the Super Bowl, right now I’d say the Seahawks. Nobody is playing better.

If this is Christmas, do you think Pete Carroll went Carrolling?

OK, that Clippers-Nuggets game has been over for a while. Jeez, 14 straight for the Clips? Who knew? Who cares? Let’s get it on the page and out the door before Christmas is over.

If this is Christmas, and even if it’s not, I’m giving Bree Schaaf a shout out. I haven’t talked to the Bremerton bobsledder since she had to pull out of the U.S. trials because her hip wasn’t 100 percent following surgery. Missing the current World Cup season has got to be killing the former Olympian. Schaaf, fifth at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Games, has had her heart set on competing in Sochi, Russia, in 2014. The odds seem longer now than they did a year ago, but don’t count her out. I won’t be surprised to see her back in a U.S. sled next year and competing in another Olympics the year after that. Get well, and give ’em hell, Bree.

Here’s some good wishes for Kyler Talbot, too. The Silverdale excavator, who won a world’s offshore boat championship a couple years ago, is currently laid up after tearing a tricep muscle while in Florida. Get well, and give ’em hell, Kyler.

Yes, I’m still waiting on that scoreboard page. Some of you probably didn’t know The Sun was designed in Texas. Yep, the business has changed. OK, I’m going to date myself, but when I started working here — I think it was ought 6 — I typed my stories on the same paper that I dried my hands off with in the bathroom. We had glue pots and pica poles and we pasted the pages together. Then somebody edited it before shoving it in a plastic folder and placing it in a conveyor belt that took it down to the print shop. Yes, we’ve come a long way, some of us not as far as others.

The cookies are starting to look pretty good again, and,well, it is still Christmas.

Wait! Stop the presses! A scoreboard proof just landed on my desk. It looks pretty clean to me. I’m gonna sign this puppy off and head home to enjoy the last hour of Christmas.

It’s a wonderful life, isn’t it.

Merry Christmas to all, and to all, I hope your paper gets to your doorstep on time because they won’t be able to blame me. We beat deadline by an hour.








Friday night thoughts

Got a few minutes before I dash out of the office to cover the Bremerton Knights-Archbishop Murphy Wildcats state playoff football game. Knights and Wildcats, that probably brings back some memories from years past when the West High Wildcats and East High Knights were the biggest game in town.

The schools merged in 1978 into Bremerton High. They kept West High’s colors and East High’s nickname. Archbishop Murphy (often referred to as ATM — Archbishop Thomas Murphy) has been to the last 2A title games and won a couple as an 1A school in 2002 and ’03. Bremerton’s making its first state appearance since 1993. If you can’t make it to the game, you can watch in live at

Quick hits

Did you see the video on Sam Gordon, the 9-year-old girl whose father has turned her into a star by making a video about her football exploits? She’s been featured on ESPN and who knows where else. I don’t have a problem with the video, but  keeping stats on a 9-year old — yards rushing, TDs, tackles etc. — is a bit much, don’t ya think?

Bremerton’s Frank Horton, the point man for the highly successful USGA and NCAA golf tournaments that Gold Mountain Golf Club has hosted  over the years, is the new president of the Washington State Golf Association. The WSGA couldn’t have found a better leader.

Missing the current World Cup bobsled season has to be driving Bremerton’s Bree Schaaf crazy. The 2010 Olympian — she was fifth at the Vancouver Games — is still recovering from off-season hip surgery and wasn’t able to complete the team trials last month at Lake Placid, N.Y. I haven’t talked to her since, but I know this: Schaaf is doing everything humanly possible to get herself healthy and ready to make another run at earning a spot on the 2014 Olympic team. The odds might not be as good as they once were, but don’t bet against her.

It’s a little too early for must wins, but if the Seahawks don’t beat the Jets, they don’t make the playoffs.

Oh-oh. No, wait a minute. 1-oh. Sounders win 1-0 over Real Salt Lake and you get the feeling the most successful soccer franchise in America are gonna finally win the MLS Cup. The fans certainly deserve one for the way they’ve supported that team.

My friend the blackjack dealer, and an astute baseball fan, tells me that he thinks the Mariners should make an offer for Josh Hamilton. And while they’re at, they should put together a deal that could bring Justin Upton to the M’s. I like his thinking and Hamilton has been lined to the M’s by some. But could Seattle really figure out a way to land those two big boppers? They’ve got a lot of trade ammo. It’s going to be an interesting offseason because the fans are losing patience. They’re seeing teams just as young as Seattle — Oakland, Detroit  etc. — performing in the postseason.

Schaaf blogs about Olympic track-and-field athletes turned bobsledders & Wednesday links

Bremerton’s Olympic bobsled pilot Bree Schaaf, who had a torn labrum repaired on her hip during the offseason, gets back into the swing of things at this weekend’s team trials at Lake Placid, N.Y. Here’s the story I wrote about Bree’s comeback.

And here’s a story Bree wrote about some Olympic track and field athletes, including hurdler Lolo Jones, who have been recruited by the bobsled team. Bree’s among a handful of U.S winter athletes blogging for

Bree writes:

“You can’t help but wonder why someone would venture away from a lucrative (and notably WARMER) sport such as track and field, even if just to try bobsled for fun.  Perhaps it’s somewhat akin to when Wham-O upped the game on the Slip ‘n Slide by adding a splashdown pool at the end.  Maybe these ladies were looking for a little more excitement at the end of a sprint? I know first-hand that when you train so singularly for one Olympic moment that it can take a long time to find the inspiration to go another 4 years.  Bobsled may be the perfect shakeup to refocus their talent.” 

Wednesday links

Nike says it will continue to “support” Livestrong, but if it is really upset about Lance Armstrong, then let them take the money the company made off him over the years he was cheating – tens and tens of millions – and give it all to the fight against cancer.

That’s what Dan Wetzel of Yahoo! Sports writes about Nike’s reaction to severing ties with Lance Armstrong. Armstrong also stepped down as chairman of “Livestrong,” the organization that’s done so much good in the fight against cancer. Wetzel wonders  if that was necessary in this commentary. In part, in reads:

“… Armstrong was no threat to anyone anymore. Banned from competition, stripped of his titles, aging, he had plenty of time for foundation work. He can’t win anything again. He can’t beat anyone again. He’s done as an athlete.

This should’ve been time to regroup and reload in a different way. This should’ve been time to stand stronger behind Armstrong because, from here on out, his purpose could be clear and true. This should’ve been a time for Armstrong to gain some maturity and grace and fight harder against the disease that tried to kill him.

The stakes remain way too big to let the fraudulent world of elite cycling destroy his work with Livestrong.”

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Spokane’s Mark Rypien, the former Washington State and NFL quarterback, just turned 50 and he’s giving the PGA Champion’s Tour a shot. Rypien shot a first-round 81 during the tour’s qualifying tournament on Tuesday.

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Bud Withers of the Seattle Times caught up with ex-Idaho/Wyoming/Washington State/Miami/Seahawks/Oregon State/ 49ers/Idaho/Arizona State football coach Dennis Erickson, who is helping his son coach football at South Albany, Ore.

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Raul Ibanez gives former Kansas City third baseman Kevin Seitzer credit for helping him find his batting stroke. It was May of 2001 and Ibanez’s big-league career was going nowhere fast at the time. In this story by’s Albert Chen, Ibanez also talks about what he learned from Edgar Martinez and Jamie Moyer as a 24-year-old rookie with the Mariners.

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Utah Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin describes Bremerton’s Marvin Williams as a “true pro.”

UPDATE: Bobsledder Bree Schaaf is sliding at U.S. team trials & links on Pac-12, Lincecum, Wilson and closers

The U.S. bobsled and skeleton teams will hold their team races in Lake Placid, N.Y., this weekend, and Bremerton bobsledder and Olympian Bree Schaaf will be sliding. Schaaf, fifth at the 2010 Olympics in Whistler, B.C., competed with a bum hip last season and had surgery at the end of the year. Schaaf was expected to get on the ice this weekend, but plans have evidently changed. She will compete for a spot on the World Cup team. I hope to talk to the Olympic High grad sometime today. Look for an update later.

Tuesday links released its midseason reports on Pac-12 football teams. The report on the Washington Huskies pegs Bishop Sankey as its most valuable offensive player, and cornerback Marcus Trufant as the Huskies’ top dawg on defense. The report on the Washington State Cougars points out that the Cougs’ defense, led by Travis Long, is surpassing expectations, but the WSU offense has struggled, failing to score touchdowns in two games. Moody WR Marquess Wilson is the offensive MVP to date.

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I’ve argued for years that baseball closers are overrated in the sense that it’s not that difficult to find somebody to come in and get three outs in the ninth inning. Tim Keown of writes a column about it. Look at the Mariners. In recent years, the M’s have had David Aardsma, Brandon League and now Tom Wilhelmsen. If something happened to Wilhelmsen, they’ll find someone else to close games. Stephen Pryor might be next in line. Closers are valuable, but they’re not hard to find.

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Everyone’s got an opinion about Russell Wilson, Seattle’s rookie QB who is turning doubters into believers. Here’s Mike Silver’s take on the undersized QB for Yahoo! Sports.

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Tim Lincecum’s starting to look like his old self again. The former Liberty High and University of Washington pitcher seems to have found his mojo again for the San Francisco Giants. After two stellar postseason outings as a reliever, it looks like Lincecum will get the start in Game 4 for the Giants. Trivia: Chris Lincecum, Tim’s dad, was once a pickup player for the Kitsap Outsiders, a semi-pro baseball team that played its home games at Bremerton’s Roosevelt Field in the early 1970s.


Monday Musing

Links, opinions and quick hits on sunny Monday while waiting for 13-year-old Babe Ruth baseball players to invade Kitsap County. Drove by the Kitsap Fairgrounds & Events Center and Silverdale Beach Hotel earlier and things are eerily quiet. Anyway, here ya go:

Don’t know about you, but I’ve seen enough to think that rookie QB Russell Wilson just might be the real deal.  I know that it’s early, but he could bring some serious excitement to CenturyLink. And Matt Flynn looked pretty good too. T-Jack, it was nice to know ya.

Bremerton Olympic gold medalist Nathan Adrian was part of the closing ceremonies and is now back in the area after exploring London and, no doubt, having the time of his life. If you’re into twitter,  check out his tweets here.

Bremerton’s other Olympian, bobsledder Bree Schaaf, is training in Colorado Springs, Colo., trying to regain strength following offseason hip surgery. This is a big year for Schaaf, who needs to secure the No. 2 ride in order to solidify endorsements. If she’s driving the No. 3 sled heading in to the World Cup season prior to the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, she will probably have to dig into her own pockets again to pay for training, travel and equipment expenses. Yes, it’s a cruel world sometimes for  athletes involved in fairly obscure sports. Nate Murphy of Kitsap Public Relations has created an online fundraising campaign for Bree at

If you want to be reminded how serious folks in the south take their football, check out this $60 million, 18,000-seat high school  stadium in Allen, Texas. It’s for a high school near Dallas with an enrollment of 3,000. A far cry from the muddy bog South Kitsap plays on in the fall, huh?

State high school football players hit the practice field on Wednesday. First games are Friday, Aug. 31. Kentridge at South Kitsap is an intriguing Week 1 matchup. Former Bremerton, OC and Central Washington QB Marty Osborn runs the show at Kentridge and is considered one of the top coaches in the state. Port Orchard native Eric Canton, a former SK QB who played at Washington, will be making his head coaching debut for the Wolves. Elsewhere that night, North Kitsap, considered by many as the team to beat in the Class 2A Olympic League, visits powerhouse Archbishop Murphy in Everett, and Central Kitsap heads to Bainbridge for an all-Kitsap County affair.

I’ve been told that Waite Park, Minn., the Midwest Plains Regional 13-year-old Babe Ruth champs, played in the Cal Ripken 12-year-old World Series a year ago. That could be an advantage during the Babe Ruth World Series at the Kitsap Fairgrounds & Events Center this week. Remember, tickets are just $5 a day and it looks like the weather is going to cooperate. It would be nice to see the stands packed during the 10-day tournament.

Ichiro’s not exactly ripping it up in New York, but he’s fitting in with the Yankees. He’s hitting .265 (he was hitting .262 this season with the Mariners). It will be interesting to see how the 38-year-old performs in the postseason. Think he raises his game? Or will he go 1-for-4 with a meaningless slap single to left field?

Congratulations to Silverdale’s Erynne Lee for another top finish at the U.S. Women’s Amateur. She’s been a quarterfinalist three times and a semifinalist once. Here’s hoping the Silverdale golfer can break through in 2013 or 2014, which will be her last chance before turning pro. She’s going to attempt to qualify for the Canadian Women’s Open in British Columbia before returning to UCLA for her sophomore year.

Kitsap’s PGA Tour golfer Troy Kelly is back in action this week, playing in the Wyndham Championship, which starts Thursday at the Sedgefield Country Club in Greensboro, N.C. I was in Reno for the Reno-Tahoe Open two weekends ago. I watched Kelly bomb a couple 400-yard plus drives (consider the elevation, 5,800 feet with some steep climbs on both sides) on his way to a tie for 48th. It was a Stableford format and Kelly didn’t take advantage of his length on the par 5s, but it was a lot of fun watching from outside the ropes. And did I mention the elevation? And the heat? It was 100 every day.  I thought someone was going to have to give hefty Guy Boros, Kelly’s playing partner the last day, mouth to mouth. Kelly’s currently No. 102 on the money list ($747,984) and needs to stay above 125 to keep his card for 2013. This is also the final week for players to move inside the top 125 in FedExCup points. Kelly is 117th, but starting with the No. 126 player in points (Brendan Steele) going into this week, 44 of the next 55 players in points are playing at Sedgefield. The top 125 in FedExCup points will play at The Barclays Championship the following week at Bethpage State Park in Farmington, N.Y.

New vibe for OC athletics? Bree, Rand-ee Corley, Marvin, Tebow & more

Don’t know if it’s just me, but there seems to be a new winning culture — at least a more positive one — when it comes to athletics at Olympic College. Its men’s soccer team reached the NWAACC finals, its volleyball team advanced to the NWAACC Championships, the women’s soccer team was hanging with the top squads by the end of the year. Softball has been on solid footing for a few years and will remain that way as long as Jessica Cabato’s running the show. Baseball is doing things the right way and the Rangers have become competitive in the best cee-cee division in the NWAACC, if not the West Coast. Now it remains to be seen if basketball can raise its level of play.

It was nice to see Vice President of Student Services Ron Shade on the OC sideline both days during the soccer tournament.

It’s been a while since the college administration has taken a pro-active approach with sports at the college.

OC’s added cross country, track and field and golf programs in recent years and there’s no reason why they can’t be competitive.

Basketball still the face of the athletic program at the two-year college, especially the men’s program. If the Rangers can turn it around and put some fans in the stands at Bremer Student Center, that would go a long way toward making a statement that the school is on the right track.

OC’s women get started on Friday, playing Hood Hood at the Clackamas Thanksgiving Invitational. The OC men start hooping at Pierce on Dec. 1.


Here’s a fan’s take on Marvin Williams, the NBA player fom Bremerton.

A new indoors soccer center is scheduled to open in February in South Tacoma.

Bremerton’s Bree Schaafleaves Friday for Europe to begin another World Cup bobsled season. Schaaf’s and Emily Azevedo, who placed fifth at the 2010 Olympics, are the No. 1 team for the U.S. I’m hoping to talk to Schaaf this week and we’ll tell you how she’s feeling heading into this year’s competition. Schaaf’s still aiming for the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, Russia. AP writer Tim Reynolds recently tweeted that’d he’d just gotten off the phone with one of the world’s funniest bobsledders, but he couldn’t print most of what Bree said. Here’s a recent Bree tweet from Lake Placid, where she’s been training:

“If only every day we had giant shirtless Russian bohunks at the bottom of the track waiting to move our sled for us, good day today!”

Happy birthday to Randy Corley, the Silverdale rodeo announcer with the velvet voice who turned 60 on Tuesday. Corley will be leaving soon for Las Vegas, where he will help announce the 10-day National Finals Rodeo. He’s also among the finalists for Rodeo Announcer of the Year. Bumped into Silverdale native Clint Corey at Corely’s suprise b-day and the former world bareback champ looks like he could still win some money at the NFR. You always come away smiling after hanging with some cowboys. Most of the folks in the rodeo business are just fun to be around.

Congrats to Russ Shiplet for being named the coach of the North Kitsap 13-year-old Babe Ruth team that will play in next summer’s World Series at the Kitsap County Fairgrounds and Events Center. Russ Barker, Brent Stenman and the rest of the host North Kitsap Babe Ruth crew are working hard to make that event a success.

The Clink will be a happening place this weekend. Apple Cup on Saturday at 4:30 p.m., followed by a 1:05 p.m. Seahawks game vs. Washington on Sunday. Predictions anyone? Huskies slither in with a 6-6 6-5 record, and seem ripe for an upset. This is Washington State’s bowl game and the Cougs have got the win-one-for-the-coach thing going for ’em. This is a tough Apple Cup to predict. Gonna hold off on that one for a day or two. As for the Seahawks, they’re on a bit of a roll and the Redskins are scuffling after a 3-1 start. The Skins have lost six straight and winning in Seattle will be difficult. I like the Hawks to win easily, something like 27-7.

“Perhaps (Tim) Tebow will be the exception, a leader so rare he causes us to rethink what is plausible in pro football and gets an entire franchise – directed on the football side by John Elway, one of the greatest and most talented quarterbacks in NFL history – to invest in defying conventional wisdom on a weekly basis.” I don’t think so either, and neither does the guy who wrote that, Mike Silver of Yahoo Sports!

The thing that amazes me about Tebow is nobody gets a good lick on the Denver QB. Defenders are usually blowing snot bubbles and their eyes bugging out of their head if they think they’ve got a shot at beheading an enemy quarterback. But when Tebow’s out there on the loose, he’s the one delivering the blows.

Remember Norm Johnson, the Silverdale resident and former Seahawks kicker? Norm, once again, will flip the coin and be involved at the Dec. 3 Army-Navy flag football game at Silverdale Stadium. Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about Norm.

After Arkansas upsets LSU this week, it looks like it’ll be LSU vs. Alabama for the BCS national championship. But Auburn could upset Alabama, and then Stanford and Andrew Luck, which don’t seem so dominant anymore, are suddenly back in the BCS title picture. College football’s tougher than usual to figure out this year. USC might be playing the best football in the country right now, but can’t go anywhere.

And, in case you missed it, East-West Alumi Game III is coming Dec. 27. Want to play or get involved? Get hold of Rick Walker.