I love this time of year. The thought of warm weather being just around the corner is always exciting, but the laundry list of happenings in April gets me amped even more!
- March Madness championship game.
- The Masters! I do need to say anything more?
- The MLB season gets underway. (My fantasy baseball title defense also)
April 2 – My step-mom Jayme
April 3 – Trend setting, marathon running, usual suspect Mark Hagan
April 4 – High School friend Alysia Dickens
April 6 – Brett Hallacher and I have the same birthday.. both will be 29 this year.
April 8 – My cousin Brandon
April 10 – Potter County neighbor Carrie Burcham
April 12 – SB the BRUCE!!!!!!! Fellow ultimate, and pool enthusiast Sean Keuleyan
April 27 – Original KISS guitarist ACE FREHLEY! Ok, so we’ve never met, but it’s still an April B-day.
Let’s start at the top. Kentucky beat up on Kansas in the college basketball championship. Kentucky was the best team in the nation all year led by freshman standouts Anthony Davis and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. Can’t deny they were good, in a dream scenario I would love to see them face the Fab 5: Chris Webber, Jalen Rose, Juwan Howard, Ray Jackson, and Jimmy King. I would put my money on the Fab 5 every time!
UNC bowed out after reaching the Elite 8. The injury, and overrated (Harrison Barnes) bug hit Carolina hard. Days later, after the loss, news drops that Tyler Zeller, John Henson, Harrison Barnes, and Kendall Marshall will all enter the NBA draft. Zeller is the only senior in the bunch. The tournament has been a little bittersweet to say the least.
The Masters starts today! In my opinion, the most prized and historic/legendary Major Championship in golf. Tiger Woods won last week for the first time in a long time. He is clearly one of the greatest athletes of all time, and he is still on the prowl for Jack Nicklaus’ record for major championships. I predicted in November he would come out strong this year. I’m expecting him to be in the running come Sunday.
Rory McIlroy has been playing lights out. After his collapse at the Masters last year, many are expecting him to exercise some demons and capture his first win at the Masters. Dream pairing would have Tiger and Rory on Sunday dueling for the green jacket.
MLB opening day take 3! Last week the Mariners and A’s played a two game series in Tokyo. Last night the Cardinals spoiled the Marlins home opener in their brand new stadium. Today, half of baseball hits the diamond for the first time. Tomorrow, the last half finally gets their season underway. I totally disagree with how MLB opened the season this year, but just like everything else in the world – money talks.
So many story lines to follow in baseball this year. Albert Pujols and Prince Fielder with new huge contracts and new teams. Rangers add star pitcher Yu Darvish to a team that has been to the World Series two years running. The Phillies will be missing the heart of their line-up (Ryan Howard/Chase Utley) for most of the first half of the season. The Padres will be starting a new first basemen with the first name Yonder… I mean, c’mon! The list goes on and on.
Lastly – birthdays/celebrations. It is seems kinda weird that so many people I have become close to throughout my life have a birthday right around mine. I really enjoy it. It feels like a small close knit fraternity. This year, there is an extra date to throw into the mix: my cousin Steve is getting married on April 7th. Steve’s birthday isn’t until the end of August, but I still want to write up a “Welcome to the Early April Festivities Club” membership card. It just seems fitting.
In parting, I’ll leave you with my best, most awesome, uncanny, hilarious tweet from April fool’s day. It’s simple and straight to the point.
JaMarcus Russell #Aprilfools