Think you can pass this final exam?

Santo Caruso

In honor of the impending doom that is finals week, here is your take home exam for the sports semester. No cheating, no working together and no checking ahead for the answers. This isn’t a core humanities class.

Multiple Choice

How many home runs will Barry Bonds hit this season?

A) 0-5B) 5-15C) Over 15D) With or without steroids?

Answer: B. Barry will make it a point to break Babe Ruth’s record and then immediately disappear to the DL, where he may retire with little fanfare. The real question is, do Barry’s actions point to an irreverence for history or blatant racism towards former white stars?

Why did Steve Nash win his second straight MVP?

A) He’s white.B) Kobe raped a girl.C) Lebron just crossed the new age limit this season.D) Isiah ThomasAnswer: A, B, and C. Kobe deserves a lot of votes, but you can’t win an award by ignoring teammates and being surrounded by controversy (unless you’re Ray Lewis). Lebron should win it, but then how does that make the league’s freshly printed restrictions on high schoolers look? If you give the Chicago Bulls a vote, they’d say Thomas (thanks for the pick and LaMarcus Aldridge, Zeke). But if you think this over-hyping of a white player is egregious, wait until Adam Morrison goes in the first 10 picks. You’ll be convinced he’s Larry Bird, Jerry West and Pistol Pete all rolled into one by the beginning of the season. The NHL’s boom in popularity will last. True or False?

Answer: False. Hockey is a niche sport and still does not work as well on television as it does in person. All the stars changing places and the return of the dormant sport gave it a shot in the arm, but next year OLN’s big plot to take down ESPN will end.

Who will draft Randy Foye?

A) Boston CelticsB) Golden State WarriorsC) Seattle SupersonicsD) Philadelphia 76ersAnswer: Who knows, because more and more players are coming out in what appears to be a weak draft, and though all four teams could use the Villanova star, whoever has the second highest pick will most likely snag him after Brandon Roy. But he’ll finish in the top five Rookie of the Year voting 2007.

Short Answers

What do the Eagles need to do to get back into the playoffs?

Answer: The biggest move the Birds needed to make has already passed, and that is trade for Eric Moulds. Acquiring Javon Walker will help, but not for another two years because history has shown players need at least one season to recover from ACL surgery. I absolutely love Chad Jackson as a player to draft, but rookie receivers can’t make the kind of impact the Eagles need at WR.Still, all hope is not lost. If they have a great draft, I think they will trade down if they can’t get Winston Justice, and draft Ernie Sims. I like either a Chad Greenway or LenDale White (keep your fingers crossed) in the second round. The rest of the division is taking risks with players with character issues (TO and Arrington), but there still isn’t a QB to speak of in the East besides McNabb.

What do the Phillies need to do to make the playoffs?

Answer: A miracle.

Long Essay

Make a strong case for Lebron James staying in Cleveland

Besides the fact that Cleveland rocks, I don’t think a case can be made for James leaving Cleveland. Some are saying he will flee to New York when he becomes a free agent, and this will be best for the league (the biggest star in the biggest market), but I can’t see a worse scenario for the NBA.This isn’t the ’70s where only the Knicks, Celtics and Lakers are on television. Between TNT, ESPN and ABC, James gets plenty of air time, and has already become the league’s most marketable superstar. If James went to New York, several things would happen. Either Thomas, the worst GM in the history of sports, would continue to mortgage the future of the franchise while surrounding King James with players so bad Ron Artest wouldn’t even bother fighting them, or Zeke gets fired. James is still stuck with Larry Brown and his stifling offensive structure which will waste Lebron’s ability by taking the ball out of his hands. If LB gets fired, now James is in New York, where he chased out a hall of fame coach and top 50 NBA player with a team that will be strangled by the salary cap in the near future, and an insane media criticizing his every pass.Yeah, that definitely seems like a good situation for a player who, and I better whisper when I say this, could be better than Michael Jordan.The best scenario for James is sign a contract with the Cavs similar to Tim Duncan’s, where he gets paid like a top player but spreads the money out in such a way that Cleveland can surround him with the pieces to consistently make runs at championships. The league proves that smaller market teams can compete, and a hometown boy stays with the franchise that drafted him. Free agency is killing the fan-player loyalty. Not to mention, James and Dwayne Wade in Miami can go back and forth winning divisions assuring they won’t meet until the Eastern Conference finals. Now if only they can convince King James to switch numbers so they can retire Jordan’s league wide, and eventually retire his as well.