Commentary

This and That

Updated: September 22, 2008, 4:09 PM ET
By Dick Vitale | ESPN.com

Each week I'll talk about the world of sports...

•What a great win for the U.S. squad in the Ryder Cup. USA captain Paul Azinger showed so much pride and passion in motivating and inspiring his team to victory. The U.S. had lost this event in five of the prior six meetings, so this was a great all-around performance. Rookies like Hunter Mahan, Anthony Kim, J.B. Holmes and Boo Weekley really stepped it up. It was great to see Jim Furyk clinch the Cup and the emotion he showed after that match. The Ryder Cup is so special because of the patriotism and spirit involved. The American team was considered an underdog but it came through. Guys like Sergio Garcia, Lee Westwood and Padraig Harrington really struggled at Valhalla.

•The farewell to Yankee Stadium brought back a lot of emotions and memories. I went there as a six or seven-year old for the very first time, going with my uncles. I remember when relief pitcher Joe Page threw a ball to me during batting practice, and how excited I was. The game means something special to youngsters and a generation won't have the same memories in that old ballpark. I remember waiting there outside the stadium, seeing the great players, and seeing Casey Stengel getting out of a cab and going into the park. It is kind of sad to say this stadium is finished.

•The Tampa Bay Rays are playoff bound, baby! Who would have ever dreamed or believed this could happen with a $40 million payroll. This team won with pitching and defense, plus guys like Carlos Pena and Evan Longoria have stepped up. It was a great moment as the George Mason of baseball clinched a postseason berth. After watching this team struggle since day one, it is great to see a T-E-A-M come through. Joe Maddon has done a terrific job with this club.

•Who would have thought the Tennessee Titans and Buffalo Bills would be 3-0? How many people really believed the Miami Dolphins could go into New England and score blowout city against Bill Belichick's squad? Come on, did a lot of people feel the Indianapolis Colts would lose their first two games in their beautiful new building, Lucas Oil Stadium? That's the beauty of the NFL as so many wacky things happen.

•How about a salute to Ronnie Brown of the Dolphins. He put on a show against the Pats, even throwing for one touchdown. Wait 'til New England faces Miami in the rematch; do you think Belichick will be prepared for that one?

•Michigan State found a way to beat Notre Dame, handing Charlie Weis' team its first loss of the season. This game was closer than the final score indicated. Javon Ringer is an incredible running back who deserves more national recognition. Mark D'Antonio has done a nice job in East Lansing as the Spartans are 3-1.

•You had to be impressed by the all-around performance of Florida in its win at Tennessee. Urban Meyer's defense held the Vols to six points. It was a real blowout as Tim Tebow and company dominated. The SEC is loaded, my friends. Then look at LSU's great win at Auburn as Jarrett Lee took over at quarterback when Andrew Hatch was injured. Lee led the Tigers to the winning drive. Georgia also was super, scintillating and sensational in a hostile environment, beating Arizona State.

•The Pac-10 has struggled a bit when you look at the Sun Devils loss to the Bulldogs. Then check out Oregon, upset at home by Boise State. USC is clearly the cream of the crop in the conference, but several others have had early disappointing results.

•How good is BYU? Max Hall keeps throwing touchdowns and the Cougars defense posted another shutout in a big win over Wyoming. The last two weeks, BYU has won by a total margin of 103-0! This is a legitimate team and the Cougars could be the BCS buster this season.

Dick Vitale

College Basketball analyst
Dick Vitale, college basketball's top analyst and ambassador, joined ESPN during the 1979-80 season. His thorough knowledge of the game is brought forth in an enthusiastic, passionate style. Vitale also contributes columns to ESPN.com.