Who Will The Bidwells Blame Now?


Is it possible to politely say "I told you so?"

Probably not, so let's not say it.

But the NFL events of Sunday had to go a long way in removing any doubt that Jake Plummer's performance as an Arizona Cardinal was not the reason behind the team's losing ways.

While Arizona was falling 28-10 to the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday, Jake the Snake was leading the Denver Broncos to a 31-17 win over the Indianapolis Colts.

With Arizona's loss, the Cards fall to 3-12 on the year. Postseason hopes for the Cards were dashed long ago.

Denver's win improves the Broncos to 10-5 and earned the team its first playoff spot since 2000 and only its second since John Elway hung up his cleats in 1998.

When Plummer refused to deal with the Cards last year, Jake-bashers around the state were saying good riddance.

Plummer had wrongly shouldered much of the blame for the team's ineptitude.

Cardinal faithful were heard saying new quarterback Jeff Blake would step in to gallantly lead Arizona to the promised land.

That didn't happen.

Late in the season, the struggling Blake was replaced by Josh McCown. Under the signal calling of the two, the Cards have lost seven straight games.

Meanwhile in Denver, Plummer has the Broncos playing with the confidence and vigor they did when Elway was pulling the trigger.

In the win over the Colts (11-4), Plummer recovered from an early interception to complete 14 of 17 passes for 238 yards and a TD. He also rushed six times for 22 yards. On a six-yard TD scamper late in the first quarter, Plummer showed the brilliance of old that local football fans first witnessed during his ASU days at Camp Tontozona.

Now that Plummer's not in Arizona to take the blame, guess who will be the next scapegoat?

Yep, coach Dave McGinnis.

I hope if McGinnis is fired, he someday rebounds --ike Jake did --o prove Cardinal woes are not the fault on either a coach or the players.

The blame lies someplace higher up in the organization.

NFHS to meet in Phoenix

The future of the nation's high school sports programs will be greatly impacted by a meeting Jan. 3 to 6 at the Biltmore Hotel in Phoenix.

There, the Arizona Interscholastic Association will host the National Federal of High School Association's winter meeting.

At the gathering, executive directors representing most all of the country's high school state associations will gather to consider the rules, regulations and guidelines that will govern prep athletic programs.

As part of the NFHS winter meeting, the AIA will present a seminar on the state's Pursuing Victory with Honor and Scholar Athletic programs that are considered by many to be national models.

The AIA's Pursing Victory with Honor program was instituted in schools several years ago to implement character education and healthy lifestyles into high school sports.

AIA officials claim that since the PVWH seminars first began being offered during the 2001-2002 school year, they have witnessed a dramatic decrease in ejections of athletes and coaches during the fall sports season.

Officials also claim that the PVWH program has been well received by the 755 coaches, athletic directors and community members who have attended any of the 22 seminars that have been offered.

The AIA Scholar-Athlete program rewards student-athletes and schools for excelling in the classroom and on the playing field.

Since the inception of the program, Payson High has been a frequent recipient of honors both for individual athletes and for Longhorn teams.

At the NFHS winter meeting, AIA officials will present the state's PVWH and Scholar-Athlete programs anticipating they could be adopted nationwide.

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