- North Carolina coach Roy Williams makes good use
of the mistake cliche
to address NCAA violations
that occurred while he was at Kansas (July 16, 2005; UNC website):
"I am deeply saddened to say there was evidently a
mistake...I don't believe there is any pattern
of intentional wrongdoing in these cases, but they were mistakes."
Theme song of the 2004 Masters golf tournament, as sung by eventual sixth place finisher Chris DiMarco (April 10, 2004; Reuters):
"Phil (Mickelson) is going to have a lot of pressure on him because he's got to try to get that monkey off his back."
A coach has to be on top of his cliche game after a blowout loss; Dallas Cowboy coach Dave Campo pulled out all the stops following a 37-7 rout by the Giants
(December 15, 2002; SportsTicker):
"There's no excuses...they whipped us on both sides of the ball...give credit to the New York Giants. They were ready to play and they got after us. They took it right to us...we got into a hole we couldn't dig ourselves out of."
In the playoffs, cliches are taken to another level. Derek Fisher of the Los Angeles Lakers explained how his team defeated Sacramento in their decisive Game 7 (June 4, 2002; AP):
"We dug deep...deeper than we've ever dug before."
Announcers often mix sports cliches, as Chris Berman did when analyzing how the Philadelphia Eagles won their wildcard playoff game (January 12, 2002; ABC-TV):
"They smelled the jugular."
Sports cliches now infect Spanish! Speaking through an interpreter, 2nd baseman Alfonso Soriano commented on the Yankees' series-clinching victory over Oakland (October 15, 2001; Sports Ticker):
"We came out a little more focused this game knowing there was no tommorow."
Things to say after losing a Super Bowl (January 28, 2001; NFL Insider):
NY Giant quarterback Kerry Collins: "They never gave us anything. They completely took me out of my rhythm."
Offensive tackle Lomas Brown: "We thought we’d have more success running the ball...we weren’t able to sustain anything.”
Running back Tiki Barber: "They got us out of our game plan early. We just couldn't execute."
Oakland Raiders cornerback Charles Woodson got one year probation
after getting busted for driving while impaired.
Woodson's agent Kevin Poston addressed the media (July 18, 2000; AP):
"He made a mistake and he's learned from it. He's turning a negative
into a positive."
If a major sports championship is won in a large American city, a
riot will immediately occur. Prominent people then emerge to make cliche
statements, such as Los Angeles County Supervisor Mike Antonovich after
the Lakers secured the NBA championship (June 21, 2000; AP):
"What began as a tremendous victory on the basketball court became a
black eye for Los Angeles County as the result of senseless, irresponsible
Facing elimination by the Philadelphia Flyers in their best-of-7
series, a few New Jersey Devils served up these cliche gems (May 21, 2000;
Captain Scott Stevens: "It's not over yet. We have to look at it as
one game at a time, starting tomorrow."
Bobby Holik: "There is no desperation. I think the best way to describe
it is determination. I don't think we have to do anything differently,
we just have to play 60 minutes the way we are capable of playing. We just
have to be more focused and disciplined."
Scott Niedermayer: "There is no choice, we have to go out and leave
it all on the ice."
Coach Larry Robinson: "It's beyond me, that if you consider yourself
a winner, how you can go out and not give everything. You can't leave anything
on the table."
Sportswriter Cam Cole penned these bizarre lines in Canada's National
Post about Canadian champion Jennifer Robinson during the World Figure
Skating Championships in Nice, France (April 3, 2000):
(She) skated like a dream. In the circumstances, the old "110%" hardly
covers it. She gave more than she had, no doubt about it.
The best quotes from the 2000 NCAA basketball tournament -- our Final
East Regional. Seton Hall coach
Tommy Amaker upon advancing to the Sweet 16 (March 19, 2000; SportsTicker):
"We drew closer together in the face of adversity. Our team has shown
a lot of heart and guts. This team has won a lot of close games and it
has a lot to do with their mental toughness."
South Regional. North Carolina
coach Bill Guthridge after the Tar Heels upset #1 seeded Stanford (March
19, 2000; SportsTicker):
"Obviously that was a great win for us. I'm happy for the team. They
worked hard and deserve it. Stanford is a great team and to defeat them
is great for us. Our team is resilient. They have kept their heads up through
the adversity this year."
Midwest Regional. Kentucky coach
Tubby Smith survives St. Bonaventure in overtime (March 16, 2000; SportsTicker):
"Resiliency has been the profile of this team all season, as we have
matured and grown and have gone through the difficult times. We have come
together as a team."
West Regional. Arizona coach Lute
Olson after the #1 seeded Wildcats exit the tournament in the second round
courtesy of Wisconsin (March 18, 2000; SportsTicker):
"It's very obvious that the better team won this from the standpoint
of maturity and toughness. It's a difficult lesson to learn but it's obvious
that Wisconsin's maturity and toughness is something that our freshmen
and sophomores have to be aware of if we want to get to where we want to
get as a team. I'm really proud of these guys. They battled really hard
all year long and right to the end."
He may be running out of rope, but he's still got plenty of cliches
in reserve. UCLA coach Steve Lavin assessed his team's losing streak
(February 19, 2000; AP):
"We are struggling right now,'' embattled Bruins coach Steve Lavin said.
"We have lost six of seven. We are running out of rope. Our backs are against
Going out on top of his game - excerpts from the resignation speech
of Georgia Tech coach Bobby Cremins (February 18, 2000; RamblinWreck.com):
"I feel the time has come for new leadership in our basketball program."
"This is my responsibility and I feel badly I have not been able to
get us going where we should be going."
"I want to thank our great fans."
"I am looking forward to the next chapter in my life."
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