In the Cheap Seats: Favre needs to experience the youthful joy of playing football only in his back yard

By BOBBY "BUTCH" BURNEY, News-Telegram Sports Editor

July 29, 2008 - The sports world if full of cliches, like "We're just taking it one game at a time," and "They put their pants on one leg at a time just like we do."

But, the most overused cliche has to be that Brett Favre "plays the game like a little boy." Everybody who is tired of hearing that, raise your hand.

I'm sure Favre does like to play football. Most guys do, but I don't know that he enjoys playing any more than most of the men in the NFL. What we've seen the last few offseasons is that Favre also throws fits like a little boy.

He's held up the Packers' offseason plans for three offseasons - just because he can. The previous two years, he didn't tell them whether he was coming back until after the college draft, which was a disservice. Then, this offseason, he has wallowed back and forth between retirement, playing for Green Bay and playing for another team.

Favre seems to believe that he is bigger than the game of football, that he can set his own rules (contacting other teams behind the Packers' backs; retiring, unretiring) and there should be no consequences. Only John Madden would agree.

Despite what Favre may think, the NFL will survive without him. He should stay retired and continue playing football out in his backyard - the same as other little boys.

OKLAHOMA STEALERS - The Oklahoma City NBA team that slithered out of Seattle is now looking for a name to call themselves. The franchise has registered six names - Barons, Bison, Energy, Marshalls, Thunder and Wind. Is this the NBA, the XFL or Mother Goose? Those are some truly terrible names, not to mention that Marshal is misspelled, unless they are talking about the town east of Longview. The franchise should call itself the Oklahoma Stealers. The town tried to take the New Orleans team, now they have successfully pilfered the SuperSonics. They could also be known as the Short Timers, because an NBA franchise in Oklahoma City won't last for very long. ... OKC isn't large enough to fill a 20,000-seat arena every night, and with gas prices the way they are, people are hesitant to spend an extra $100 on fuel to see a team play. If you don't believe it, just ask the Texas Rangers.

NEW AND IMPROVED - Wildcat fans will likely notice a few subtle changes to Prim Stadium this fall. The improvements will include better lighting - the field was lit only about half as well as the UIL recommends - and more seating on the visitors' side. The increase seating was needed because the Wildcats will be entertaining schools that have almost twice as many students as SSHS' 1,100. Longview has over 2,000 enrolled, and Wichita Falls Rider, Texas High and Marshall are all about 1,700-1,900. The new bleachers will seat an additional 500 people. ... SSHS fans also want to keep in mind that season tickets go on sale next week. Renewals can be made Monday-Tuesday and new tickets can be purchased Thursday-Friday on a first-come basis. The season tickets will be on sale in the SSHS Media Center (use Connally Street entrance) from 8:45 a.m. to noon, and 1-5 p.m. Fans can also buy a reserved parking pass for $50. ... While you're buying tickets, you can also stop by the SSHS practice fields and catch two-a-day workouts, which start at 7 a.m. on Monday. ... Volleyball practice also starts on Monday, as does band rehearsal.

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