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Photo by Kathleen Greeson / Way back in 2003, this Chattanooga soldier departed for Fort Campbell in preparation of getting deployed. His daughter wanted one more hug.

Our turn

Thank you.

Thank you to those who served. Thank you to those who served those who served.

Military members deserve our heartfelt appreciation; military families deserve it too. (Side note: The sacrifice of family made me think of the great photo the Mrs. 5-at-10 took way back in 2003 when she was working for the TFP. I attached it. It's pretty awesome in its awesomeness.)

I don't have anything clever or cute to say.

Today should be more than a Rushmore or the Hallmark TV commercial with a service person sitting in at a family gathering through an iPad.

(Side note: Seriously, you know the commercial I'm talking about, and it's a down-right tear-maker. Side note on the side note: It gets unexpectedly dusty wherever I am at the end of sappy sports movies. Who knew, right? Well, it's not a matter of dusty or allergies or whatever code word for crying you may use when those returning soldiers surprise their kids. That's a bona fide water works. Shut up Spy. I'm not crying; you're crying.)

Still, in the bigger picture and in these divided times, I think today is even more important than normal.

It's important because of the meaning, of course. It's important because of the sacrifice, too.

But those are baseline vitals.

Veterans day is more important this year because if we're not willing to find ways to fix this mess — and gang, this was a mess long before Donald Trump switched from the reality TV set to the Oval Office — and repair the greatest country on the planet, then it's not only a great disservice to the future generations.

It's an insult to the folks who paid the ultimate price for your freedom and mine.

So, I will say thank you one more time, and add my pledge as an American.

Thank you for your service; I promise to do everything in my power to make sure it was not a hollow sacrifice.  

 

Masters

I wrote some yesterday about how the Masters spans the time and the generations. Maybe only Churchill Downs equals the universal backdrop where all the greats competed through the years.

But this one of course is different.

No patrons will be surreal at a place that is known for so many things. Think about all the classic details and signature items that are forever linked to golf's shrine at the corner of Washington and Old Berckmans roads.

The slogan. A tradition unlike any other.

The trophy. The green jacket.

The course. Duh.

The logo. As good as there is.

The menu. Pimento cheese, chips and a domestic CoCola still is less than $5.

The roars. Yeah, about that

We have adjusted — or tried — to all of these events with no or limited and socially distanced fans. The Masters will only allow close friends and family this week.

It will be different, and as Wright Thompson — who was excellent on Press Row on Tuesday — said, the pressure in silence may even be more dramatic come Sunday.

I surely hope so.

And even more than that, I hope come next spring we're back on the grounds, and this one year tradition is truly unlike any other.

 

Poof

Wow, the This and That got quite heavy today. So there's that. And a lot more Masters stuff so enjoy.

But this story caught my attention on a lot of levels. According to CBS sports and Jeff Goodamn of The Stadium, Gregg Marshall's time at Wichita State is about to be done.

Marshall has been accused of verbal and physical assault by former players and staff members.

The allegations included a player saying he was punched several years ago and a former assistant claiming to be choked by Marshall.

If they are true, he deserves to be canned.

But it also would be the end to a career of one of the most successful college coaches on the job right now.

Marshall was 331-121 with the Shockers and raised them to a Gonzaga-level of mid-major program with major-major level of success that has included a Final Four trip, an unbeaten regular season and a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament.

Marshall denies the physical abuse allegations, writing last month in an op-ed in the Wichita Eagle: "In response to the allegations put forward in the media, I simply state unequivocally that I have never physically struck a player or colleague. Allegations claiming otherwise are false."

You have to wonder how many jobs Marshall turned down and how many of those schools are breathing a big sigh of relief right now.


 

This and that

— OK we waxed poetically on Augusta. That's what we do and what that place means to me. But please remember the Masterfully Mastering the Masterpiece that is the Masters. Send me your five picks, top-four scores count.

— While we are on the Masters, doesn't every entry have to start with Bryson DeChambeau? I think so. Here's my entry, DeChambeau, Fleetwood, Justin Thomas, Jon Rahm and Morikawa.

— And speaking of Rahm, holy cow what a skipping ace he dropped on 16 Tuesday.

— Lots of NFL rule discussion, including an expansion of the Rooney Rule. OK. Here's more on NFL commissioner Roger Goodell looking at options for the onside kick, which makes sense because the onside kick is such a long shot these days. Well, unless you're playing the Falcons of course. 

— For some of you stargazers, there will be great opportunities to see up to five fireballs an hour in the night sky tonight and tomorrow night. Here's more.

— Wow, last night would have been the Champion's Classic with Duke, Kentucky, Michigan State and Kansas. I hate COVID.

 — You know the rules. Here's Paschall on one player's success being alright spot during the Vols' recent struggles and updates around the league as Corona wreaks havoc on the SEC schedule.

— You also know one of the other rules and when TFP sports editor and prep guru Stephen Hargis writes on high school sports, well, it's link-worthy. Here is a look back at the Hall of Fame career of Wayne Turner. And dang, how about that Mark Wiedmer drawing to go along with that thing?

 

Today's questions

Which way Wednesday will start this way:

Which movie surprisingly and somewhat embarrassingly makes you tear up?  

Which former player/turned homer announcer was the best, because Tommy Heinsohn, who died Tuesday, was right there for the Celtics? We may need a college and a pro division on this because, God bless Bert Bertlekamp on the Vols hoops broadcast. "Money!" https://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/30292489/boston-celtics-legendary-player-coach-broadcaster-tommy-heinsohn-dies-age-86

Which Masters tradition is the best?

> Which Masters prop bet do you like the best?

> Will there be a hole-in-one during the tournament?

> Cutline over/under 147.5?

> What will be the highest 18-hole score, over/under 84.5?

Which hole at Augusta National is your favorite?

As for today, Nov. 11, let's review.

It's Demi Moore's birthday. She's had a great career.

It's also Leo's birthday. He's 46 and a bona fide A-lister.

Rushmore of Leo/Leonard. Go and remember the Masters contest and the mailbag.

And remember to thank a Veteran and his or her family.

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