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The Right Approach...Views on the world of bowling.

Volume 3, Issue 4, The 108th Edition
By Angel Zobel-Rodriguez

      While I was in Reno bowling the Festival of Bowling last week, bowling made the news once again--well, not exactly. The notorious sports shock jock, Jim Rome, saw a promotional piece in a local paper on Youth Masters finalist Chris Jones and apparently spent his "Last Word" segment ripping the 19 year old and more importantly, bowling in general. I opened my email from the hotel room to find a torrent of e-mails from mortified and indignant bowlers who wanted to start everything from write-in campaigns, to boycotting Fox Sports entirely, to writing long and expressive explanations trying to educate Rome on the Sport of bowling.

      Let me get to the point. Does anyone REALLY care what Jim Rome has to say on bowling? This is the same little man (some of his detractors call him the Gnome) who egged on Quarterback Jim Everett on a live, studio telecast several years ago by continually calling him Chrissy (a reference to Chris Everett, the female tennis player) and after being asked by the player several times to stop, Rome was lucky Everett only upended the table, and didn't rearrange Romie's face. If he wants to talk about "work ethic," he should honestly look at his own career. The guy in one breath calls his fans clones and makes fun of them, at the same time organizing road shows where thousands of adults go to worship a radio announcer. Honestly, I'm sure he's never been bowling, but that's not the point. I mean, while I'm at it, let's ask Howard Stern his opinions on raising teenage girls. It's really not worth the effort.

      Personally, I think the efforts to defend bowling from the likes of Jim Rome are just wasted. Do you really think Jim Rome gives a hoot about bowling? Probably not. There was a time several years ago when he was on L.A. (San Diego) radio that I wanted to call in and challenge him just to show him that bowling was a sport, and even a woman could beat him, but what's the point? He makes his living. We have our sport. Several years ago, he made fun of Marv Alpert unmercifully, and Marv is back in the announcer's booth. Unfortunately, it's what Rome gets paid to do. If he said nothing controversial for four hours a day on radio, and his half hour on cable each night, he'd be looking for a new career--thankfully, not in the bowling broadcast booth, and definitely not on the lanes.

      And this week, the same Chris Jones that Rome decided to blast just won $25,000 in scholarship money in the Youth Masters finals to further his education. There was a two-minute segment aired during the PBA Tournament of Champions, and companion articles that appeared this week in USA Today. The top two finalists also appeared on Rome's network, Fox Sports to talk about their feats. Then consider, with the publicity he's received thanks to Rome, if Chris Jones decides he wants to bowl in regional or perhaps national professional events someday, my guess is he will have no trouble finding sponsors. Jim's comments have been forwarded to nearly every pro bowler online and the powers that be in professional and sanctioned bowling, so everyone will know Chris Jones. Which is something that can't be said about Rome.

      So instead of trying to change the mind of one person who won't be changed, go out and enjoy the Sport. He can diss it all he wants, but with all his help, the joke's on Rome.

Gotta Split,

Angel


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