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Not out to get anyone

By Anthony Rhoads

The News-Daily and Daily Herald sports department gets its share of weird and strange messages, letters and e-mails throughout the year.

There's the Georgia guy who sends us periodic postcards and letters proclaiming how great the Bulldogs are, how bad the Yellow Jackets are and slamming us for our supposed Georgia Tech ?bias.'

Some of his correspondence is pretty funny. For a while when George O'Leary was head coach at Tech, he would put ?Curious George' stickers on his letters and postcards.

Some of the stuff I just don't understand. For instance, he slams Georgia Tech for playing Vanderbilt in football but the last time I checked, Georgia plays Vandy every year as they are both members of the SEC. I guess it's okay for Georgia to play Vanderbilt but not okay for Georgia Tech to play Vanderbilt.

I also don't understand the so-called Georgia Tech ?bias.' Yes, we have done numerous stories on Georgia Tech baseball when Eagle's Landing's Matt Murton and Jonesboro's Jason Perry were on the team but we also did plenty of stories on Georgia baseball when Riverdale's Darryl Blaze and Henry County's Jarrett Warren were playing for the ?Dogs.

There isn't a grand conspiracy in the sports department against Georgia or Georgia Tech. I personally have no feelings whatsoever about Georgia or Georgia Tech; I am pretty much neutral when it comes to those teams.

I know it will also come as a shock to some parents and coaches but there also is no conspiracy against high school teams either. Before each school year, Doug, Jeff and myself DO NOT hold a meeting and decide which schools we are going to favor during the high school sports season.

Why would we? How sick would it be for three guys who are in their 30s to sit around and conspire against certain high schools? Again, I personally don't have any feelings one way or the other when it comes to high schools in this area. We're all human and we might have better working relationships with some coaches but that's as far as it goes. I am not out to get certain schools and I am pretty sure Doug and Jeff aren't either. What's even crazier is there are some parents and coaches who actually think we have an agenda against their schools.

One of the most common comments we get is ?you always have such-and-such's scores in the paper and you always favor them.'

Well, the reason certain teams always have their scores in the paper is their coaches always call in their scores.

Some coaches have even said they don't have the time to call in scores. Well, it's kind of sad they can't take five minutes to call in a score but they will take that time to call up and complain.

We also get some downright bizarre comments. One of the strangest and most disturbing came on Sept. 11, 2001 at about 4:30 in the afternoon. We received an e-mail from a parent who was concerned about a lack of volleyball coverage. What kind of mentality is that? On Sept. 11, 2001 there were some other things to be worried about other than high school volleyball. Ultimately, things must be taken in perspective. The world of sports is fun. It's fun to participate, it's fun to watch and it's fun to write about but it's not worth acting crazy over.

Anthony Rhoads is a sports writer for The Daily. His column appears on Wednesdays. He can be reached at sports@news-daily.com or arhoads@news-daily.com.