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The Weekend Lowdown with Jon Marthaler: Ranking the Winter Olympic sports

Posted by: Michael Rand under Olympics Updated: February 8, 2014 - 11:51 AM

Game of the weekend: The Olympics

I could try to list out all of NBC's coverage, which is spread across five networks, but I'll do better just linking you to their official site and letting you work things out. I'll also offer you the following scientific ranking of Winter Olympic sports:

  1. Hockey: The Olympics is the most important international competition. The game is better because the ice is bigger. And sometimes this happens to Canada. It's got everything!
  2. Curling: Mesmerizing, and full of Minnesotans. You know how ESPN shows bowling on Sunday afternoons in the fall because everybody's watching football? I wish they'd show curling instead. I would watch so much curling.
  3. Alpine skiing: NASCAR should have races like this, by which I mean time trials on an icy mountain.
  4. (tie) Bobsled / luge / skeleton: These are basically all the same sport.
  5. Speed skating (short track): Ooh! A pileup!
  6. Figure skating: This tends to be more popular with females than males. I can't quite figure out why. It goes in the same category as women's gymnastics and the royal wedding, for me, but I realize that there are many people for whom the Winter Olympics are nothing but figure skating.
  7. Speed skating (long track): Are there people who watch the 10,000 meters at the Summer Olympics? I bet those people live for long-track speed skating.
  8. Biathlon: Something that involves carrying a gun around should be less boring.
  9. Ski jumping: Something that involves jumping off a mountain should be less boring.
  10. Snowboarding / freestyle skiing: I cannot shake the feeling that all snowboarding and freestyle skiing events should be broadcast only on MTV, be sponsored by Surge and/or OK Soda, and take place in 1997.
  11. Cross-country skiing: The Tour de France of the Winter Olympics, by which I mean way too long and incredibly boring to watch.

What else to watch

Today, 11:30am: Cardiff City at Swansea City (NBC). These teams are A) both in Wales, B) separated by just three points in the standings, and C) both in some danger of being relegated back into the second division. All of which should make for quite the game.

Today, 1pm: #10 Michigan at #17 Iowa. I wonder if Acie Earl is going to play in this game? I'll bet he is.

Today/Sunday, 2pm: Pebble Beach National Pro-Am (CBS). Now that you're into February, you have my permission to start dreaming about playing golf again. Forget that it's snowing and 10 degrees outside. Use your imagination.

Sunday, 1pm: Penn State at Gopher Wrestling (BTN). The Nittany Lions are #1 in the country; the Gophers are #3. There should be battles between two Top-10 wrestlers at six of the ten weights; it's time for J Robinson's men to prove whether they have what it takes to challenge Penn State at the top.


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