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OPINION | WALLY HALL: Hometown news with my toes in the sand

by Wally Hall | May 29, 2022 at 2:51 a.m.

Every seat was taken in every watering hole in the Miami airport Friday night.

When the Miami Heat-Boston Celtics game tipped off in a must-win NBA playoff game for the Heat, it was expected the American Airlines wing of the airport, which is huge, would be crazy.

It wasn't.

A few times your scribe ambled across the concourse from gate 49 to check the score, and it seemed like more were on their cellphones than watching the game.

Guess the business travelers and tourists were not fans of the Heat. Or the Celtics.

Returning from a a trip that was months in the planning, there was no concern about catching up with the local sports news after being in St. Thomas for six days.

This is not an advertisement, maybe an endorsement, but every day, with coffee on a balcony with a view of the Caribbean and several islands including St. John's, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette was read from cover to cover.

On Wednesday morning, the election returns were devoured. In fact, every section of your statewide and hometown newspaper was interesting.

One morning sitting under a shade tree -- the sun doesn't like yours truly -- a man stopped and asked what I was reading. When I told him, he was amazed.

On my iPad, I was plugged into home while almost 2,000 miles away.

On the same iPad, I learned that Herschel Walker had won Georgia's GOP Senate primary, defeating what sounded like five much more qualified opponents.

Guess the Heisman Trophy and his NFL career outweighed him declining to debate, his open discussions of his struggle with mental illness and violent urges.

He now faces incumbent Democrat Raphael Warnock, who won his race easily.

Keeping up with the Arkansas Razorbacks baseball woes was easy, and when the Hogs, who have lost eight of their past 10 games were eliminated from the SEC Tournament by Florida, Coach Dave Van Horn summed it up perfectly.

Paraphrasing, sometimes you hit, sometimes you don't, sometimes you pitch, sometimes you don't, sometimes you field sometimes you don't.

Van Horn has won 788 games as the Razorbacks coach and 1,159 as a head coach. He knows the game.

If whatever is plaguing the Hogs can be fixed, he'll fix it before the NCAA regionals next week.

On Saturday morning at home, I read Mike Masterson's column about what had been revealed in Huntsville athletics over the years. Sounded like severe bullying.

Three school officials were unseated in their election bids after months of the Madison County Record, a weekly newspaper whose editor and publisher is Ellen Kreth and general manager is Shannon Hahn, revealed truth after truth of misconduct in the locker rooms.

Kreth began her career at this newspaper, became an attorney, then became a recovering attorney as she raised her daughters and later took over her family's newspaper.

She and the paper deserve a Pulitzer Prize for unbiased reporting.

Also loved the story and picture we had of our man Bob Holt being inducted into the Arkansas Sportscasters and Sportwriters Hall of Fame along with Mike Irwin, Chris Mortensen and Mike Nail.

A great honor for some great journalists.

Irwin was a pioneer among TV sportscasters, becoming the first to cover the Razorbacks from Fayetteville and not Fort Smith.

It was his idea and former athletic director Frank Broyles embraced it whole-heartedly.

We kicked back at home Saturday to relax and watch the Razorbacks get so close to getting their first trip to the Women's World Series.

All in all it was a great trip, a getaway that allowed me to stay in touch with my home state every day.

Print Headline: Hometown news with my toes in the sand


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