Welcome to the Tuesday edition of The Cooler, where the only sensible fashion statement is a v-neck sweater over a button down shirt. Let’s get to it:
*Counting compensatory picks, there will be 254 selections made in the NFL Draft, which is just a few weeks away and runs from April 25-27.
A total of 254 players will have their dreams of hearing their name called fulfilled on a big stage and under the bright lights. The biggest stars among them will have friends and family in attendance in anticipation of being selected in Thursday’s first round.
They will get to the stage, many of them wearing expensive suits. They will shake hands, and then they will be given ball caps from their new teams to put on their heads.
And this is the point many of them might wish they had chosen a different sport or even a different line of work.
The caps for almost every team, made by New Era, were unveiled Tuesday. And with a few exceptions, they are not exactly appealing and are not playing to rave reviews.
The designs, per @MySportsUpdate, have elements of city or state flags on them.
They also, according to some, might be more appropriately worn after buying one along with a Slim Jim and an energy drink.
Now, this happens pretty much whenever new sports merchandise is announced. There are a lot of people who hate the designs, and the loudest negative voices tend to occupy a lot of the social media spaces.
But in this case, there seems to be a pretty broad consensus that the vast majority of these caps are very bad.
Personally, I like the Chargers cap. And the Vikings one isn’t too bad. Luckily for the purple, nobody would every accuse them of having the worst cap as long as the Saints cap still exists.
*In November 2016, Isaiah Washington officially signed his letter of intent to join the Gophers men’s basketball program. He was a four-star recruit and a top-50 ranked player nationally out of New York. Of the point guard, head coach Richard Pitino said this: “He is a dynamic player, loves the game, and is a lot of fun to watch on the court,” adding that he expected Washington to “make an impact on our program right away.”
Washington’s two seasons here did not work out as planned, and on Monday he announced his intention to transfer. In a statement, he offered a very good explanation: “However, this season took a toll on me mentally. I started to lose the love of basketball and my grandparents health issues added more to it. I’ve took the time to sit with a therapist to help me out. After talks with family, it’s best that I find a new home.”
Hey, it happens. Not all fits are great. Not all hyped recruits or prospects pan out.
*Speaking of which: I was a tag-along member of the Hunter Greene fan club in June 2017 when the Twins had the No. 1 pick and had a shot at taking the flame-throwing high school phenom. They instead drafted Royce Lewis and, well … it’s working out pretty well so far.
Lewis has had two very productive seasons in the minors. Greene has shown flashes but has yet to harness his potential. And on Monday it was announced by the Reds — who took him No. 2 overall — that he had a major injury setback and will need Tommy John surgery.
That’s hardly a career-ender, and Greene very well could prove to be an MLB star. But for now, the Twins’ pick of Lewis looks a lot better than many of us thought it would.