By Doug Gorman
One of the things I like about my job is writing my weekly column.
It gives me a chance to vent, praise those who deserve it, or just comment on a particular happening.
Or as is the case this week, write about many issues all wrapped into one editorial.
Post-season accolades: There has been a college football pipeline leading from the Southern Crescent for many years. It's always nice to see local players trade their football skills in for a chance to earn a college education. Most recently, two of the area's former high school football standouts were honored with postseason awards when Maryland's senior offensive lineman C.J. Brooks was named to the first team All-ACC football team. The former Morrow standout is completing his college career, but don't be surprised if he plays on Sunday.
Willie Copeland is just starting his college career, but already, he's proving to be a great find for the Fort Valley State University Wildcats. Fort Valley was one of the few schools that recruited Copeland as a quarterback and he hasn't disappointed. The former Stockbridge High School quarterback and punter started as a true freshman for the Wildcats and was named the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference's Freshman of the Year.
News from the hardwood: I never had any doubt former Jonesboro basketball player Toney Douglas was going to make it in the college game. I wasn't sure the Auburn Tigers' freshman would explode on the scene so fast. However, Douglas not only starts for the Tigers, he is averaging more than 19 points per game. By the time Douglas and his teammates get to the heart of the SEC schedule, Auburn could be dangerous.
Coming home: It's been almost 20 years since John Salley helped turn the Georgia Tech basketball team into a national and ACC power. Along with point guard Mark Price and coach Bobby Cremins, Georgia Tech was the best thing happening in the Atlanta sports scene through much of the 1980s.
This week, Salley, who's jersey is retired at Tech, will give the graduation address at the fall semester commencement ceremony.
Salley has put his Tech degree to good use. After a successful NB A career, Sally is now involved in the entertainment business, including the co-host of a popular show on Fox Sports.
Salley should be an inspiration to all young athletes. He has proven there's life after the playing days end and the cheers stop.
Good guy award: Georgia football player David Pollock might be one of the most intense football players in the game. Earlier this week, he was rewarded for his hard work as he was named the winner of the Lombardi Award, given to the best lineman in the country Not bad for a guy who was recruited to Georgia as a fullback.
Off the field, Pollack seems to be one of the game's good guys. Known for his religious beliefs, Pollack declined to be part of "Playboy" magazine's All-American college football team two years ago, saying it conflicted with his religious beliefs. When he declined, he did it in a way that wasn't judgmental. It just wasn't for him. Pollack is as self-assured as he is talented.
It's my guess he is going to have a bright pro career.
Talking again: The NHL and players' union is back talking, hoping to salvage some sort of a season. I really like hockey and had high hopes for the Thrashers this year, but I have a question - has anybody really missed it?
Doug Gorman is sports editor of the Daily. His column runs on Fridays. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org