Forget GOP battles: It's Super Wednesday for sports fans

What more could we want? Sounders season begins. First Mariners TV broadcast. UW women start Pac-12 tournament. And let the Peyton games begin.

Peyton Manning during a 2009 game for Indianapolis in Phoenix

Peyton Manning during a 2009 game for Indianapolis in Phoenix Abqtrucker/Flickr (CC)

Jhon Kennedy Hurtado is a defender for the Sounders.

Jhon Kennedy Hurtado is a defender for the Sounders. Seattle Sounders

The many who would say their favorite sport is Republican politics may already be trying to forget about the hours they devoted to Super Tuesday. Certainly, regional sports fans by now are well ensconced in Super Wednesday.

How else would one refer to the annual pre-spring sports awakening, with nearly every pro or major-college program in the region featuring something newsworthy going on, to wit:

  • The Seattle FC Sounders start their season at 7 p.m., seemingly certain to lure a throaty cohort to CenturyLink Field and have many more scarf-wrapped advocates watching the meet-up with Mexico’s Santos Laguna via the Fox Soccer Channel.
  • The Seattle Mariners, having sunned and stretched their way through a few weeks of training and several Cactus League games, will appear before local TV viewers via Channel 407 on Comcast.
  • The Husky women’s basketball team launches the post-season with a noon radio-only game against Oregon at the Pac-12 tournament in Los Angeles.
  • The Husky men have the luxury of bunching up with Pac-12 Coach of the Year Lorenzo Romar to observe today’s Washington State-Oregon State game and learn which of the Northwest rivals will be their opponent Thursday (March 8) at 12:10 p.m. The men’s tourney games will be played yet again at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. The arena has hosted the playoff since 2002, this to the chagrin of many conference officials and partisans who believe for obvious reasons that the Staples gives UCLA and USC built-in fan advantage. Reports indicate that games next year and perhaps in succeeding years will be played in relatively neutral Las Vegas.
  • The region’s pro-hockey contingents have games scheduled, with both the Seattle Thunderbirds (at Prince George) and Everett Silvertips (hosting Victoria) covered via 7 p.m. radio broadcasts.

That enough for everybody? If not, contemplate what’s going on off the field with the Seattle Seahawks. The Indianapolis Colts released Peyton Manning, the franchise’s greatest (and just about only) quarterback of the 21st century (Johnny Unitas was the best of the 20th). The move leaves Manning available for job prospects on a number of QB-needy NFL teams and that could prompt the Hawks to shop for the 35-year-old star (he sat out last year with injuries).

Colts officials consider Manning, if not spent, at least expendable since the franchise will get to pick at number one between a pair of star college quarterbacks. The Seahawks, with the 12th pick, also obviously are ensconced in analyzing talent during the long run-up to the April 26-28 player draft. Some sources have the Hawks picking a defensive end from Illinois.

Let’s see, what are we leaving out?

Oh, yeah, there doesn’t seem to be much chance of the National Basketball Association Sacramento Kings moving to Seattle. Tuesday (March 6) members of the Sacramento City Council voted 7-2 in favor of a non-binding commitment to the building of a new sports castle that would keep the Kings in town.

Ah well, the region still has the NBA. Those who can find time amid all the other athletic pageantry of Super Wednesday can tune in to CSN 5 p.m. and see the Portland Trailblazers play at Minnesota.

Since 1994 Senior Lecturer Mike Henderson, a veteran writer and editor for The Times, Post-Intelligencer, (Everett) Herald, Seattle Weekly and Crosscut, has been a member of the faculty of the University of Washington Department of Communication. He considers himself to be the only journalist ever to interview actor Gene Hackman inside San Quentin prison while wearing a pair of Hackman's pants. He can be reached at mikh48@hotmail.com.


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