Effingham Daily News, Effingham, IL


May 8, 2014

Czachorski: Over the NFL draft

EFFINGHAM — A number of sad, sappy songs deal with the theme of not recognizing something or someone you previously loved.

While that comparison is a bit overdramatic, I used to love the National Football League Draft, and now, its bloated condition leaves it unrecognizable to me.

For years, the NFL Draft weekend was a highlight on my calendar. A former roommate of mine and I still basically communicate on Facebook solely through random messages on how many months, days, hours and minutes it is until the NFL Draft begins.

But it's mostly a charade, because the NFL Draft I loved is dead.

I understand the NFL's decision-making process to spread it out over three days instead of two, leaving the most hardcore of fans sifting through day three's late-round picks while the big names go in primetime.

I guess I also understand why they pushed it back a few weeks, because if there's anything the NFL loves, it's having ESPN talk about them for weeks on end about things that haven't happened yet.

I understand them. I don't condone them.

Again, it's all about the Draft I loved, pored over the details of and prepped to watch with friends for two marathon days that tested our wills to continue watching and dealing with various rivarlies -- and sometimes even each other.

It was all about spotaenity. The clock never stopped ticking, anything could happen within a 15-minute span, and it was enthralling.

Now, the clock stops. Repeatedly. Teams reset, start reshuffling the decks, and do it all again the next two days.

I also think I can't enjoy the draft more than I did last year, when the Kansas City Chiefs picked offensive tackle Eric Fisher number one, out of my alma mater Central Michigan University, a concept that seemed so impossible I vowed I'd buy his jersey if they actually did. I'll be wearing it today in honor of that occasion.

It's such a mutated beast they churned a ridiculous Kevin Costner movie out of it. (Note: I am not a movie reviewer, but if you want to see a really mediocre movie about football, I recommend Draft Day. It's at least laugh-worthy.)

I still like the concept and will follow along. I'm still really hoping the Bears get someone like Pittsburgh DL Aaron Donald or Michigan State CB Darqueze Dennard. I understand what a monumental role it plays in building a championship-level team.

So yeah, I want a defensive lineman that can rush the passer and stuff the run, or a defensive back who realizes not to let Randall Cobb get behind them on the biggest play of the season to let the Packers win the NFC North.

But much like the movie Draft Day, I'll be following the real-life draft day(s) in a similar way: looking at my phone every few minutes, not devoting enough attention to it and waiting for it to end so I can move on to the next thing.


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  • czachorskimug.jpg Czachorski: Extra innings intrigue unmatched

    Obscenely long baseball games are my kryptonite. Once I get sucked in, it’s impossible for me to stop watching until it’s over. It doesn’t matter if it’s the Cubs, the Cardinals, the Astros or the Mariners — if it’s on TV and it’s going into the twelfth inning or later, you can bet I’m finding a way to tune in.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-29NewtonOrientmain.JPG Newton's season ends in 14-4 loss

     Newton Post 20 almost pulled another comeback off against the Orient Miners, cutting a 5-1 deficit to 5-4 midway through Monday night’s game.
    But Newton’s Junior Legion Fifth Division tournament run came to an end, as Orient rattled off nine runs in the sixth inning and clinched a spot in the state tournament with a 14-4 win.

    July 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • 7-28NewtonSundaygame2.JPG Comeback win keeps Post 20 alive in 10-7 win

    Newton Post 120 didn’t let a 4-1 deficit get to them against Highland Post 439, using a patient approach in the face of an elimination game.
    Three bases-loaded walks in the bottom of the third tied the game at 4-4, and with the bases loaded down 5-4 in the fourth, Tim Weber broke the game open with a two-run double and an error.
    By the time the dust settled, Newton led 10-5 heading to the sixth inning and would hold on to a 10-7 win to keep its season alive.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7-28NewtonSundaygame1.JPG Salem deals Newton first divisional loss

    Mitch Bierman started off Newton Post 20’s game against Salem Post 128 with a bang Sunday afternoon, hitting a leadoff triple and scoring on the next batter.
    Post 20’s offense didn’t follow his lead from there, as Newton had just three more hits and no runs, and falling in a Junior Legion Fifth Division winner’s bracket game to Salem 12-1 in seven innings.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • DSC_0725.JPG Newton Post 20 bests Belleville Post 58 in opener 6-1
    After a 9-3 loss to Breese Post 252 Gray Monday night, Newton Post 20 coach John Grunloh predicted the five-day break until the Junior Legion Fifth Division tournament would be good for his players, especially his pitchers. 
    Mitch Jansen proved his coach right, spinning a gem in Newton's opener Saturday afternoon as Post 20 made short work of Belleville Post 58 6-1. 

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • daughertyfootball.jpg Hearts to prep with Mattoon 7-on-7

    Two weeks ago, Effingham was supposed to start shaking off the rust with a 7-on-7 football tournament in Mattoon. Naturally, it rained and was canceled.
    So Saturday, the Flaming Hearts will head up to Mattoon and play their first 7-on-7 event of the season, taking part in an 10- team field with Mattoon, Rochester, Robinson, Marshall, Cahokia and Pleasant Plains from Illinois, with Terre Haute North and Northview coming from Indiana. Rochester is bringing two squads.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Mammoser3.jpg Newton Post 20 plays Belleville Saturday

    With the District 23 tournament behind them, Newton Post 20 now knows its fate for the Fifth Division Junior Legion tournament this weekend in Bethalto.
    Newton will play Belleville Post 58 at 2:45 p.m. Saturday afternoon in Bethalto, in the third game of six on the day.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bateman.jpg Effingham's season comes to a close with 11-1 loss to Salem

    A 1-0 lead for Effingham Post 120 rapidly evaporated, and the post’s Junior Legion season came to an end with a 11-1 loss in five innings to Salem Post 128 Tuesday night.
    The game was for the final spot of District 23 in the divisional tournament, with Newton Post 20 and Breese Post 252 Gray punching their tickets by winning their district divisions.

    July 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • Bierman.jpg Newton Post 20 falls short against Breese Gray 9-3

    While the District 23 title ultimately exceeded Newton Post 20’s grasp, their season will continue in Bethalto.
    Newton took on Breese Post 252 Gray for the Junior Legion District 23 title as the two division winners, but Breese’s bats proved too much for Newton in an 9-3 loss for Post 20.
    “The innings where they put some runs on us, we gave them some extra outs,” said Newton coach John Grunloh. “You’ve got to make the plays when you play better teams.”

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • Barnes3.jpg Barnes' one-hitter boosts Post 120; Effingham beats Dieterich 1-0

    Ryan Barnes hasn’t seen a lot of time with Effingham Post 120’s junior legion team this season, but he showed up in a big way Monday night in a 1-0 win over Dieterich Post 628.
    The win kept Effingham’s season alive one more day in the Junior Legion District 23 tournament, as the post will face Salem Post 128 at 5:30 p.m. today for the district’s final spot in the divisional round. Salem Post 128 downed Mt. Vernon Post 141 1-0 in the West Division loser’s bracket, setting up the final with Effingham today.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

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