This and that

Each week I talk about the world of sports:

• Coaches today are faced with a real challenge -- athletes dealing behind their backs with agents. You saw it in several stories last week with football players at North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Georgia and Alabama. The situation causes a nightmare for athletic programs! These coaches can only have so much responsibility. The athletes themselves have to know right from wrong! The agents that are sleazy know which athletes will peddle their talents. The athletes have been given an intense education as to what is right and wrong. Trust me, they must be responsible!

• How do we help solve this problem? I have said on many telecasts the kids should receive a stipend from the NCAA. To be fair, let's also remember that there are some very good agents.

• Just wondering what kind of screaming would be taking place if John Calipari's Kentucky kids were the ones involved with agents. I can guarantee you it would be bedlam, baby! Every newspaper and media outlet in America would go nuts.

• I would vote Lou Piniella into the Baseball Hall of Fame. I wonder how other fans feel about that statement. Just look at his overall body of work and what he has accomplished. Piniella has led many teams to the winner's circle.

• I also wonder if you have the same feeling that I have regarding the lack of buzz over Alex Rodriguez. Is the excitement around him chasing 600 home runs tainted by his steroid use? Normally there would be more to this story, since only six players in major league history have accomplished that feat. Yet when I think of the 600 club, I only think of those that did not use juice … Ruth, Aaron, Mays and Griffey!

• Very quietly, the Lakers have had a successful offseason. Mitch Kupchak brought in Steve Blake in the backcourt, and recently the team added Matt Barnes and Theo Ratliff for depth up front. It may not have had the same splash as Miami's new additions, but the defending champions will be heard from again next season and they can thank the decisions they're making now for that.

• My prayers go out to former NFL head coach Bill Cowher and his lovely family on the passing of his wife, Kaye. Sadly, she lost her battle to skin cancer.

• I want to wish a speedy recovery to West Virginia coach coach Bob Huggins. He was hospitalized with four broken ribs after an accidental fall in a hotel in Las Vegas during a recruiting trip.