Jason’s awful, reality check sports weekend

The Democrats invaded Long Beach this weekend and one couldn’t help but have some of that blind optimism rub off on them.

While national polls agree that there are two, maybe three, real contenders to snag the party’s presidential nomination, no less than eight candidates, and their die-hard/delusional supporters, turned out to Long Beach Convention Center this weekend.

Politics is a lot like sports. You don shirts and other swag in support of your team, even when they have an ice cube’s chance in hell of winning. (Fun fact: there were plenty of Kamala Harris shirts in the city over the weekend.)

As in sports, politicians borrow from each other when they see something is successful. Back an issue and get a bump in the polls? Sign them up. Present someone else’s plan as your own? That’s been passed around more than the West Coast offense.

On Saturday, the UCLA Bruins took a page out of the Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren playbook and didn’t show up.

In the most anticipated game in half a decade, the Bruins got barrel-rolled by a Utah team that seemed to have an identity crisis of its own, having trotted out in alternate uniforms that had me thinking UCLA was playing Washington State or Ohio State.

Unfortunately for me, and fortunately for my editor, Steve—he owns a cologne called “Jason’s Misery” [Editor’s note: Like Jason, it has strong notes of bergamot and cluelessness]—the Utes played like Ohio State. In a blur of fumbles, miscues and some Keystone Cops defense, they plowed through the Mighty Bruins en route to a 49-3 final score.

Thankfully, perspective is something that has grown on me as I’ve grown older and slower. This team was never cut out for a presidential-type run, they’d be lucky to snag an ambassador gig to some far flung country. (Ukraine may have an opening.)

But this team has proven all year that they’ll get back up. And what an opportune time for a bounceback week than Saturday against USC?

I’ll stop with the optimism now, Steve hates it when I’m hopeful [EN: It stinks.]

Lions and Eagles and Bears, oh why?! 

When you don’t take care of your own business, you end up relying on the results of others.

When I was in school, I usually did the bulk of group projects to ensure the quality of what was turned in.

This season, the Dallas Cowboys have been the guy that shows up 20 minutes before class starts in desperate need of a briefing.

While scoreboard watching is fun in a fantasy football sense, it’s never not nerve-wracking when real life implications are to be had.

It’s also a rough conversation with your spouse when you tell them you HAVE to watch all three time slots of football to ensure the Cowboys win, but also the Eagles and Rams lose.

The way that the weekend had unfolded you’d have to excuse me for dying momentarily after the Cowboys fumbled on their second play of the game.

I’d have the same sinking feeling later in the day while being forced to root for the Patriots. Gross.

Much was made about how critical the game against the Detroit Lions was this weekend and how the Cowboys needed to break their trend of digging themselves into a hole to start games.

As was the case in previous games this year, the stars seemingly aligned for the Boyz with key starters for their opponents ruled out with injury. Perfect. Or was it?

You could probably count the number of people you know on one hand who know who Jeff Driskel is. A former number one recruit out of high school who bounced around a number of colleges before landing a backup role in Cincinnati and Detroit, he was the perfect recipe for disaster.

The Cowboys slogged through the first half but still found themselves up by 10. Dak Prescott continued his unlikely run of passing prowess just as the Cowboys’ once vaunted defense continued its run of inconsistency.

Driskel, who wasn’t good enough to be the Bengals’ quarterback–and they have yet to win a game–and was in line to convert to wide receiver, moved the ball up and down the field with relative ease.

But, Dak, the kid who has been doing the entire class assignment all year for the Cowboys, wiggled his magical hips to 440 yards passing and a Cowboys victory.

Now, this column will eventually meet its untimely end, likely due to low readership, but this weekend it could be because of overload.

In 1989, Dr. Egon Spengler warned us not to cross the streams. This week, a UCLA-USC showdown collides with a clash between the Cowboys and Patriots.

See you on the other side, friends.

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Jason Ruiz covers City Hall and politics for the Long Beach Post.
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