Yes, Browns fans, there is something to cheer about. Don Cockroft is coming to Westlake Porter Public Library!! The punter/kicker for the Browns from 1968-1980 will be here on Tuesday, September 25 to discuss his football career and his book The 1980 Kardiac Kids: Our Untold Stories. Join Don as he takes us back to the heart-stopping era of the Kardiac Kids. His talk begins at 7 pm, but he'll be available from 6-6:45 and after his program to sign copies of his book. You can register for this program in person, by calling the library at 871-2600, or online at http://signup.westlakelibrary.org:8080/evanced/lib/eventsignup.asp?ID=11693
Since there's already enough opinion, debate, and controversy out there over the Browns and their chances of having a winning season, I'll just stick to some basic information as the 2012 NFL season prepares to kick off.
The first scheduled regular-season games features the Super Bowl Champion New York Giants hosting the Dallas Cowboys on Wednesday, September 5. Thirteen games will be played on Sunday, September 9, including the Philadelphia Eagles against the Browns here in Cleveland. Monday Night Football features a double-header, with the Bengals at Ravens at 7 pm, followed by the Chargers at the Raiders at 10:15 pm. The 17-week season, (including a Bye week for every team) ends on Sunday, December 30. Cleveland will finish up against the Steelers in Pittsburgh. Super Bowl 47 will be held on February 3, 2013 in New Orleans.
A few stats for the Browns from the 2011 season:
Leading Scorer - Phil Dawson - 92 Points.
Leading Rusher - Peyton Hillis - 161 carries, 587 yards, 3 touchdowns.
Leading Receiver - Greg Little - 61 receptions, 709 yards.
Leading Tackler - D'Qwell Jackson - 116 solo tackels, 42 assists
Franchise Player Phil Dawson went 20/20 on extra points and was 24/29 on field goals (7/8 from 50+ yards). Longest - 54 yards.
This season - new owner - new quarterback - we'll see!
The U.S. Open Tennis Championship gets underway on Monday, August 27 in New York. Defending singles champions are Novak Djokovic and Samantha Stosur. One anticipated possible match is between Roger Federer and Andy Murray, who are in the same half of the draw and could potentially meet in the semi-finals. Federer beat Murray to win Wimbledon and then Murray bested Federer a few weeks later for Olympic gold. Serena Williams, who has won 3 U.S. Opens is one of the favorites to take the women's title.
Coming up in about a month is golf's Ryder Cup, the biennial competition between the top golfers from the United States and those from Europe. This year's event will be held from Sept. 25-30 at Medinah Country Club in Medinah, Illinois.
The U. S. Team captain is Davis Love III, with vice-captains Fred Couples, Mike Hulbert, Jeff Sluman, and Scott Verplank. Jose Maria Olazabal will lead the European team with help from Thomas Bjorn, Darren Clarke, Paul McGinley, and Miguel Angel Jiminez.
The top 8 players on the American team are selected by a point system based on prize money earned in 2012. Ranked from 1-8 are Tiger Woods, Bubba Watson, Jason Dufner, Keegan Bradley, Webb Simpson, Zach Johnson, Matt Kucher, and Phil Mickelson. All 8 have won at least one tournament this year and all 8 are ranked among the top 20 players in the world. On September 4 Love will announce his 4 captain's picks to round out the team of 12. The European team roster will be finalized on Monday, August 27.
Featured Book: 1980 Kardiac Kids: Our Untold Stories by Don Cockroft (796.33264 C635C, 2011). The book is dedicated to the fans who cheered for the Browns every step of the way as they battled to win a division championship, their first in nine years. You will take a walk down memory lane by revisiting the birth of the Kardiac Kids, including the emergence of Brian Sipe at quarterback, the hiring of coach Sam Rutigliano and the 1979 season when the Kids began to establish their reputation for exciting, come-from-behind victories.