Commentary

Nehro money spent too early

Updated: May 7, 2011, 8:16 PM ET
By Jay Cronley | Special to ESPN.com

Sports coverage has gone political, which is to say the fans have to think for themselves to stay fresh. Too bad so many fans are dumb. Political sports coverage is where employees promote first what's on their network, then, whatever.

A couple of days ago, I was running through the channels looking for the least likely spot for news without politics and came upon a sports panel comprised of writers gone overboard, writers on TV, the biggest miscasting since Chevy Chase did his talk show. The writers were being asked which they were looking forward to the most Saturday, a $55 pay per view fight featuring one guy almost 40, or the Derby. To a person, the writers on TV said they more eagerly anticipated the fight over the Derby, which drew a record crowd of almost 165,000.

Running opposite the Derby was the Oklahoma City vs. Memphis NBA sleeper.

Simply put, horse race coverage, despite record crowds and stellar ratings, to which 20 percent should be added because the sport's best fans are at the tracks or at a simulcast joint betting, stinks.

Imagine this, the record-setting Derby nobody cared about except the network running it, and the millions wagering, has a legitimate second-crown threat.

Here are some Derby notes.

  • You could actually see Dialed In trying to blink away the dirt hitting him in the face after be broke last.

  • One 1-hole should be left open, it's bad down there, as the winning numbers of 16, 19, 13, 14 indicate.

  • I spent the Nehro money halfway down the lane and then had to give some of it back.

  • The call to the track sounded like a grocery store commercial.

  • Analyst Randy Moss used some math to determine that if you drew a line from the outside post to the first turn, the horse breaking in the 20-spot would run only two feet farther than what was on the inside. Outside posts in this race are not to be feared.

  • Numerous women bettors were obliterated when jockey Rosie Napravnik finished the race looking slightly more like Rosie O'Donnell.

  • Numerous male bettors were seriously pinched when Calvin Borel let on like his mount wasn't really slow.

    Write to Jay at jaycronley@yahoo.com.