My college alma mater's football team, who continue to suffer through a dismal struggle of a season, found themselves with a nationally televised game against the Arizona State Sun Devils. Kickoff for this Pac-12 tilt came at seven in the evening, Mountain Time, last Thursday night. This was just about the time that Joe Biden and Paul Ryan were teeing it up in Danville, Kentucky. This was also a nationally televised event.
Over on the NFL Network, an injury-depleted Pittsburgh Steelers team was going head-to-head against a Tennessee Titans squad that hadn't yet lived up to their potential. This professional football contest began at eight thirty eastern time, which meant that by the time Joe and Paul sat down, the second quarter was just underway.
The Yankees and the Orioles were also busy working on what would become another closely contested game in their American League Divisional Series as the Vice President and Congressman were yet to settle into their debating positions. The Orioles face elimination in their best of five series, and so their backs were against the wall.
That feeling was echoed in the matchup on the other side of the country, where the Oakland A's and the Detroit Tigers were playing one last game to decide who would move on to the American League Championship. The Biden/Ryan draw was still in the early stages when the first pitch was thrown out in Oakland.
It was a night full of sports distractions, and right-thinking Americans would have, should have, tuned in to watch how the running mates of the two major parties would square off, just four weeks before the election. With all the television technology available to me, I found myself flipping about between the men in cleats and helmets rather than looking in on the guys in suits and ties. As it turns out, for my rooting interests, I was only rewarded with the vague satisfaction of seeing the Orioles beating the Yankees in the Bronx. The rest of the action left me a little drained. The magical romp of a season the A's had been enjoying came to an end. The Steelers missed their last-minute field goal only to have the Titans make theirs. The Golden Buffaloes had a competitive first half, but then succumbed to the mile-high reality of the rest of their season and lost by more than four touchdowns. What did I miss back in Kentucky? Joe Biden got everyone talking with his feisty, or perhaps overzealous performance. No one is blaming the altitude this time.Thanks for taking one for the team, Joe.