Today in sports: College football's powers-that-be aren't afraid of the Obama White House, Roger Clemens comeback fever hits Puerto Rico, LSU fans are ashamed of their cartoon tiger.
- Not even Bowl Championship Series executive director Bill Hancock thinks President Obama is going to make good on his 2008 suggestion he would "throw my weight around a little bit" in the hopes of getting the NCAA to adopt a playoff system for college football's postseason. According to internal BCS memos obtained by the Associated Press under the Freedom of Information Act, Hancock was even less concerned with the letter Utah Senator Orrin Hatch sent to the Department of Justice on January 29th, 2010 calling for an investigation into whether the BCS violated antitrust laws. Wrote Hancock on February 4th: "Given all the other issues facing our country we find it doubtful that the White House is seriously considering contemplating action on the series of items outlined in the letter." He also noted Obama wasn't promising that his administration would break up the BCS in his 2008 comments. His comment was "consistent with his spoken preferences as a fan: it is not indicative of a government that intends to take action." So far, he's been proven right. [AP]
- Over the past two years, Peyton Manning quarterback has undergone three serious surgeries and reportedly gone to Europe for experimental stem cell therapy to fix his ailing neck. Two months after the most recent surgery, Manning conceded to the team's local press horde that the recovery process is "going slow" and said he "can't give a prediction" about when he'd be cleared to resume practicing. The latest remarks don't inspire much optimism that he'll be able to return. [Indianapolis Star]
- The LSU Tigers have looked like the best college football team in the country this season, but that hasn't stopped fans in Baton Rouge from finding cracks in the team's ferocious facade. One thing they're particularly unhappy with is the tiger logo the team has used on shirts, signs, and memorabilia since 2002. Despite undergoing two redesigns, fans are still griping that the emblem is "too cartoony" and looks like Toonces the Cat from Saturday Night Live in the early 1990s. [The New York Times]
- Rightly or wrongly, Floyd Mayweather, Jr. gets most of the blame for the fact he's never stepped into the ring against Manny Pacquiao. So it was striking to hear Mayweather adviser Daniel Ellerbe inform ESPN.com that Mayweather "looking to make the biggest fight possible and everyone knows what that fight is, the little fella." The little fella is Pacquiao, and the fight, according to Ellerbe, would take place May 5th at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. When asked by Boxingscene.com about the proposed bout, Pacquiao adviser Michael Konz said the comments were just a "gimmick by Mayweather to try and steal the thunder from Manny’s upcoming fight [against Juan Marquez Manuel]" He continued: "[H]ow can he set the date, how can he set the venue without consulting with your opponent?” This is a good point, but Mayweather's willingness to at least claim he's willing to show up counts as progress. [ESPN.com]
- Puerto Rico's El Nuevo Dia newspaper insists that Roger Clemens "wants to pitch" for the Mayagüez Indians, who have his son Koby on their winter roster. An unnamed Mayguez source tells El Nuevo he's "100 % sure" Clemens wants to join the team, despite the fact he's 49 years-old, has been retired for four seasons, and just got done with his perjury trial. A source tells the New York Daily News that while Clemens threw a bullpen session during a recent visit to see the club, it's "pure gossip" to say he wants to play for them. We say it's probably just wishful thinking. [El Nuevo Dia and the New York Daily News]