One Guy's Remaining Thoughts On 2010

As we head into the New Year, I thought I would look back at some of the things in 2010 for which I'm thankful, sports, and non-sports.

1. ESPN's 30 For 30.  ESPN does a lot of things wrong, i.e. the Brett Favre lovefest, The Decision, Colin Cowherd, Craig James. But 30 For 30 is one of those things that ESPN gets right. It's a series of 30 documentaries that ESPN actually began airing back in 2009 and which will continue into 2011. Hell, The Two Escobars documentary actually made me care about soccer, if only for a couple of hours.

2. The MLB Network is easily the best of the sports networks that are owned/operated by the sports leagues, and its product is far superior to the NFL Network. This is why I the one thing I hate about my switch to AT&T's U-Verse is that I no longer get the MLB Network.

3. I'm still trying to figure out the thinking at 790 KBME which replaced Tom Franklin with the likes of Dylan Gwinn. Gwinn makes ESPN Radio's Cowherd sound knowledgeable and thoughtful, whereas Franklin just presented a great knowledge and history of the Houston sports scene. But luckily he's still the play-by-play voice of the Houston Cougars for football and basketball, and he's definitely one of the best in the business.

4. Here's to Tron: Legacy for reminding me that Tron actually did suck.

5. And here's to Tron: Legacy for giving us Olivia Wilde in skintight clothing and presenting her in 3D.

6. The Astros might suck, but there's one reason to go to the games, and that reason is Bob Ford, the best stadium PA voice in the state. And I've been to a lot of MLB stadiums, and he's about the best I've heard anywhere.

7. I'm thankful to Drayton McLane for making me miss John McMullen.

8. And thankfully the UH is buying KTRU. Not only does this mean that the other UH sports might finally get some radio air time, but hopefully this means that KTRU which actually start offering up some programming that people might actually want to listen to.

9. I'm thankful that ESPN finally dumped Joe Morgan from their baseball broadcasts.

10. I'm thankful that Roy Oswalt finally forced Drayton McLane to face the fact that the Astros suck and need to be rebuilt.

11. And I'm thankful that Drayton has finally, officially, put the team on the market.

12. UH might have lost to UCLA, but I got to scratch the Rose Bowl off of my bucket list. It's a really beautiful place to watch football.

13. Not that my opinion matters, but here's to South Park for tearing apart the overblown claptrap that was Inception

14. Not that I have a reason, but I'm thankful for Zooey Deschanel, just because.

15. I'm thankful to the media and SID folks with the Houston Aeros, Houston Cougars, and Rice Owls for the media credentials.

16. And I'm thankful that the Astros didn't give me a credential, because I don't think I could have lived through a year of being around that team.

17. I'll be real thankful toward Bob McNair if he fires Gary Kubiak.

18. If you're not watching Craig Ferguson, you don't know what you're missing. It's easily the best and funniest show on late night television. And it's the only one with a robot sidekick.

19. Houston Cougar alumni and fans should be very thankful for Mack Rhoades. The guy cares about everything UH sports and everything UH.

20. Jeff Bagwell was only around for about half a season as the Astros hitting coach, but there was professionalism around the team that hadn't been evident in years.

21. If I had a Hall of Fame vote, Bagwell would be getting my vote. So I'm thankful for those voters who are casting their votes for Bagwell, the best everyday player in the history of the Astros.

22. I got to watch Anthony Rendon of Rice play third base. The guy appears to be a natural, and he's well on his way to becoming a multimillionaire since he'll be eligible for the MLB draft at the end of this college baseball season.

23. I'm thankful that the New Orleans Saints won the Super Bowl, because way back in July of 2009 I put a few bucks down on the Saints, and I really needed that cash. For those interested, I put some money down on the Atlanta Falcons, at 22/1, to win the upcoming Super Bowl.

24. I'm thankful that Michael Bourn and Hunter Pence are roaming the Astros outfield. They go a long way toward making up for Carlos Lee.

25. Finally, I'm thankful for all of you who read me everyday. Even those of you who hate me.

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John Royal is a native Houstonian who graduated from the University of Houston and South Texas College of Law. In his day job he is a complex litigation attorney. In his night job he writes about Houston sports for the Houston Press.
Contact: John Royal