THE WRESTLING REPORT

Summer Slam is coming and it looks awesome

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Born with a comic book in one hand and a remote control in the other, Cory DLG is the talent of Conroe's very own Nerd Thug Radio, Sports. Check out the podcast replay of the FM radio shows www.nerdthugradio.com!

The final week before Summer Slam set up some interesting moments, with Summer Slam looking like a great event this Sunday. However, there are some things that need to be addressed; there are two storylines that I have a particular problem with and WWE has kind of doubled down on them this week and I honestly don't enjoy it. The first one is Roman Reigns being put in actual physical harm, two weeks ago they did a lame stunt and faked dropping scaffolding on Roman, then this week on Raw they actually had a genuine car accident stunt where Roman lunged back into his SUV before a car hit his. There's fun WWE style drama and then there are actual stunts where someone can get hurt, and this is a call back to those old school times when Jackass was on the airwaves and wrestling was a little more irresponsible. Which leads me to my other issue, Brock Lesnar and Seth Rollins rivalry going too far, Brock Lesnar has now severely injured Seth Rollins twice, if you believe the hype machine we are now to believe that Seth Rollins will overcome great physical duress to beat a Beast? Not only have they done this exact storyline with Seth Rollins when he signed a waiver to fight Triple H a few years back but it's just reckless and stretches all believability. It's actually too much.

There were some really cool moments on Raw that I'll touch on briefly, Bray Wyatt showing up and putting the Mandible Claw on Kurt Angle was cool. The 24/7 bit was at least funny, but I am truly tired of Maria Kanellis and honestly of the 24/7 title. The Viking Experience is now stale, the audience was dead silent as they had yet another squash match in the ring, it's time to either write them a story or bench them. The OC is a terrible name for a faction but at least they can put on a good match and against the New Day and Ricochet it was a great match, also Rey Mysterio and Andrade put on an amazing match. Alexa Bliss and Nikki Cross winning the women's tag titles was cool, but it makes me wonder why give it to the Iconics at all and what is the future of Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville. The obvious stunner of the week is Goldberg's surprise announcement against Ziggler, it's one of those odd moments though considering that means The Miz doesn't have a match and they trotted The Heartbreak Kid for nothing, it's a great surprise but an odd moment if you think about it.

Smackdown kicked off with an awful Charlotte Flair and Trish Stratus promo, this is not the match that anyone's asked for. Dolph Ziggler is making a great heel turn although the idea that he is a legend killer is an odd stretch considering he's at least ten years into the wrestling game himself. It's probably because of his time on the bench, but I honestly don't care for Mustafa Ali at all. There was a lot going on in this Smackdown, and some weird moments like the Zayn vs Black match and the odd moment where Bayley comes out to save Ember Moon after taking a cheap shot at her the other day, just odd moments indeed. The big reveal that it was Rowan coming after Reigns was interesting but considering how much I hate the storyline overall, I'm not sure how great it is. Overall Summer Slam is looking good though.

Feel free to check out my brand new comic book Another Day at the Office email me for details or buy a shirt from Side Hustle Ts where some proceeds help people struggling with cancer or listen to Nerd Thug Radio. Thoughts, complaints, events and comments can be sent to corydlg@gmail.com.

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College football needs to call a timeout on the 2020 season.

The Big Ten and Pac-12 are set to announce, maybe today, perhaps in a few weeks, whether they will play football this fall.

Already the Ivy League, Mountain West and Mid-American Conference have canceled their fall football season for health and safety reasons amid the coronavirus pandemic. The Power 5 conferences – the Big Ten, Pac-12, Atlantic Coast Conference, Big 12 and Southeastern Conference – should get onboard and put their football seasons on hold, too.

While some elected officials without medical degrees say that coronavirus amounts to little more than sniffles for young people, healthcare experts argue that college-age people, while they do recover quickly and may not exhibit symptoms, do contract and spread the virus.

There has been a 90 percent increase of young people testing positive for the virus in the past four weeks. More important, health experts say they can't measure the long-term effects of the virus, which may include brain damage, heart disease and reduced lung capacity.

There is a simple solution to play or not play college football this fall – postpone the season to next spring, when health experts will know more about the disease. There possibly could be a vaccine by then, which would allow fans back in stadiums.

Many high-profile college players and coaches weighed in on the debate Monday, almost unanimously saying that the 2020 football schedule should be played on schedule, starting in a few weeks.

Players, including Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence and Ohio State quarterback Justin Fields, adopted the hashtag #WeWantToPlay. In a tweet, Lawrence said that players would be more at risk for coronavirus if the fall season doesn't move forward. "We are more likely to get the virus in everyday life than playing football."

Lawrence added that, if the football season is canceled or postponed, players "will be sent home to their own communities where social distancing is highly unlikely."

Alabama coach Nick Saban told ESPN, "Look, players are a lot safer with us than they are running around at home."

Two points: University presidents should listen to only one group of people – healthcare professionals – when they decide whether to cancel or postpone the fall football season. Yes, players want to play during this pandemic. But players also want to play when they are injured or their brain was just scrambled by a vicious tackle. We applaud athletes who play with a broken leg. We see players with concussions plead with their coaches to put them back in the game.

As for the argument that players are more likely to catch the virus if they're sent home – who's sending them home? These are student-athletes. Students. Most college campuses will be open with students attending classes this fall. Major college programs like Clemson have 85 full scholarships designated for football. Colleges won't take away players' scholarships if the football season is canceled. Clemson's campus will open Sept. 21 for in-person classes.

ESPN college football analyst Greg McElroy also said the season should be played as scheduled: "If they're (players) OK, then I'm OK." Texas governor Greg Abbott chimed in on the players' side. He said, "It's their careers, it's their health."

What "careers" is he talking about? There are about 775 colleges that play football. Only 1.7 percent of all those players will play in the NFL or another professional league. On Sept. 3, Rice University will play Army. It is unlikely that any of those players will have a career in football. However, given the excellence of academics at those colleges, players will have career opportunities in something other than football. The average NFL career is 2-1/2 years. Rice and Army grads can top that.

The NBA is completing its season in a bubble in Orlando, with players confined to their hotels between games. Only 22 teams are in Orlando for the lockdown. The Rockets organization sent about 35 people, including coaches, players and essential personnel to Orlando.

Baseball is playing its season outside a bubble. So many players are testing positive for coronavirus that MLB commissioner Rob Manfred last week threatened to end the season if teams don't do a better job of enforcing the league's health protocol. What's left is an unbalanced season. For example, the Atlanta Braves and Seattle Mariners have played 18 games, while the St. Louis Cardinals have played only five games. The ironically first-place Miami Marlins, which had 18 players test positive, have played only 10 games.

College football can't be played in a bubble. There are too many teams, with some having more than 100 players and 20 coaches. And no sport thrives on fans' excitement and marching bands like college football. Several colleges, including the University of Texas and Texas A&M, have stadiums that hold more than 100,000 fans. Even if college football could be played in a bubble, it would require isolating players from August to January, when they're supposed to be in class. I know … supposed.

This one is easy. For the health and safety of players, play the fall 2020 season in spring 2021.

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