Benner on Sports

BENNER: Time for some perspective on Tony George's legacyRestricted Content

July 13, 2009
Bill Benner
Reports of a Hulman-George family feud proved dead-on accurate when matriarch Mari Hulman-George issued a statement June 30 confirming the ouster of her son, Tony, as CEO of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the family business empire. Shortly thereafter, Tony George also resigned as CEO of the Indy Racing League.
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BENNER: Indiana Fever are adding a little sizzle to summerRestricted Content

July 6, 2009
Bill Benner
Last week’s column about the wide array of events on our July sports calendar in Indy was glaringly lacking in one aspect: The Indiana Fever. As of this writing, they are the hottest team in the WNBA, reversing an 0-2 start and racing to six straight victories.
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BENNER: July events rely on big names to draw a crowdRestricted Content

June 29, 2009
Bill Benner
For all the heat and sunshine, July can be a cold, dark hole in the Indianapolis sports calendar. Other than the ever-beloved Indianapolis Indians, sometimes there's not much going on.
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BENNER: 965 days and counting until Super Bowl Sunday 2012Restricted Content

June 15, 2009
Bill Benner
Indianapolis is more than up to the task of hosting the Super Bowl.
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BENNER: Will winning be enough for the Indiana Fever?Restricted Content

June 8, 2009
Bill Benner
The Indiana Fever still haven't taken hold of this market, despite making the playoffs each of the last four years and twice reaching the conference finals.
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Greatest Spectacle has highs, lowsRestricted Content

June 1, 2009
Bill Benner
I went away after the Indianapolis 500 once again convinced I'd experienced the Greatest Spectacle in Racing, but I didn't view the race with a critical eye like my pal Robin Miller did.
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Crooked Stick is primed for the Men's Senior OpenRestricted Content

May 25, 2009
Bill Benner
The media and other hackers gathered at Crooked Stick Golf Club in Carmel recently to hear about plans for the upcoming U.S. Men's Senior Open, then tested their limited skills on the golf course.
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If Pacers left, would these kids get help they need?Restricted Content

May 18, 2009
Bill Benner
Combined forcesâ??the gifts of time, treasure and inspiration from the athlete in concert with the programming, dedication and outreach of community leadersâ??can change the direction of young lives.
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Indianapolis Motor Speedway is still our 800-pound gorillaRestricted Content

May 11, 2009
Bill Benner
In the big picture of Indianapolis, we should never forget that the Speedway and its events—the Indy 500 in particular—remain the 800-pound gorilla in our little corner of the world.
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City built on leadership, cooperation is in dangerRestricted Content

May 4, 2009
Bill Benner
No matter how the Capital Improvement Board funding mess plays out, we're left with resentment coming from all directions and an unprecedented splintering of the long-standing bipartisan cooperation that helped propel our city forward.
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Will local paper keep covering your favorite team?Restricted Content

April 27, 2009
Bill Benner
As a (former full-time) ink-stained wretch, witnessing the demise of the daily newspaper is heartbreaking. I can't imagine a day without the "morning miracle" in my hands over a cup of coffee.
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No playoffs, but plenty of positives for PacersRestricted Content

April 20, 2009
Bill Benner
Without question, the Pacers' road back to contending status remains decidedly uphill, but they have the talents of Danny Granger and other strong players and have worked hard to gain community support.
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Detroit reminds us not to squander what we haveRestricted Content

April 13, 2009
Bill Benner
My prevailing thoughts upon returning from Detroit were how fortunate Indianapolis is when it comes to hosting these kinds of events, and how a thriving downtown is essential to (A) success of the region and (B) national perception.
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Lucas Oil Stadium hosted basketball beautifullyRestricted Content

April 6, 2009
Bill Benner

Congratulations to Lucas Oil Stadium Director Mike Fox, assistant Andy Arnold and the amazing crew at the stadium for transforming the venue into an intimate, 40,000-seat basketball venue for the NCAA's Midwest Regional.

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Big Ten Network trades controversy for successRestricted Content

March 30, 2009
Bill Benner
Less than two years after its audacious launch, the Chicago-based Big Ten Network has expanded into more than 70 million homes with coverage in 23 of the nation's top 25 markets.
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Pacers' owners deserve accolades, not scornRestricted Content

March 16, 2009
Bill Benner
Indiana residents should be thanking Herb and Mel Simon for their multitude of contributions to the state, instead of bashing them.
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Meet the guy who can call a foul on the refereeRestricted Content

March 9, 2009
Bill Benner
While he gets great seats every time as he watches about 75 basketball games a season, John Adams also has serious responsibilities as the NCAA's national coordinator of men's basketball officiating.
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Taking Sycamores to final looks easy in retrospectRestricted Content

March 2, 2009
Bill Benner
It might have been easier for Larry Bird to lead the championship game of the NCAA's men's basketball tournament 30 years ago with those improbable underdog Sycamores than to right the ship he's steering as president of basketball for the Indiana Pacers now.
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Stern's definition of 'golden age' is laughableRestricted Content

February 23, 2009
Bill Benner

Of this, that and the other while wondering if NBA Commissioner David Stern had just taken a hit off Michael Phelps' bong when he proclaimed this to be "the golden age of basketball" during his all-star weekend news conference in Phoenix.

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Finding bright spots amid wave of bad Indy sports newsRestricted Content

February 16, 2009
Bill Benner
So much sad, bad, disturbing sports news. Time to look on the brighter side.
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An open letter to Indianapolis Colts owner Jim IrsayRestricted Content

February 9, 2009
Bill Benner
Jim, you could engender so much good will if you would step forward and provide some short-term relief by paying more toward the operating costs of Lucas Oil Stadium.
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In hard times, is big-time sports willing to budge?Restricted Content

February 2, 2009
Bill Benner
Even as the economy spirals downward, no one gives a thought to bringing some kind of fiscal sanity to the overall enterprise of sports.
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Myles Brand has never run from challengesRestricted Content

January 26, 2009
Bill Benner
The term "pancreatic cancer" gets my attention. That's because two years ago, my wife and I were shaken to the depths of our souls by the thought that she might have it. Thus, when I heard the terrible news that NCAA President Myles Brand has been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, I was able to relate on both practical and personal levels.
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A coaching change, without the dramaRestricted Content

January 19, 2009
Bill Benner
By nature, coaching is a transient profession, increasingly so in these days of not-so-guaranteed contracts (by either the employer or employee) and the mentality of, "What have you done for us?" not lately, but, uh, like today. Or an hour ago.
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Colts fans need perspective to go with their angstRestricted Content

January 12, 2009
Bill Benner
Isn't it always amazing—or, perhaps, not so—that character, class, dignity and integrity always matter so much ... until they don't? And that moment arrives in the instant of unacceptable defeat.
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  1. So much for Eric Holder's conversation about race. If white people have got something to say, they get sued over it. Bottom line: white people have un-freer speech than others as a consequence of the misnamed "Civil rights laws."

  2. I agree, having seen three shows, that I was less than wowed. Disappointing!!

  3. Start drilling, start fracking, and start using our own energy. Other states have enriched their citizens and nearly elminated unemployment by using these resources that are on private land. If you are against the 'low prices' of discount stores, the best way to allow shoppers more choice is to empower them with better earnings. NOT through manipulated gov mandated min wage hikes, but better jobs and higher competitive pay. This would be direct result of using our own energy resources, yet Obama knows that Americans who arent dependent of gov welfare are much less likely to vote Dem, so he looks for ways to ensure America's decline and keep its citizens dependent of gov.

  4. Say It Loud, I'm Black and Ashamed: It's too bad that with certain "black" entertainment events, it seems violence and thuggery follows and the collateral damage that it leaves behinds continues to be a strain on the city in terms of people getting hurt, killed or becoming victims of crimes and/or stretching city resources. I remember shopping in the Meadows area years ago until violence and crime ended make most of the business pack you and leave as did with Lafayette Square and Washington Square. Over the past 10 to 12 years, I remember going to the Indiana Black Expo Soul Picnic in Washington Park. Violence, gang fights and homicides ended that. My great grandmother still bears the scares on her leg from when she was trampled by a group of thugs running from gun fire from a rival gang. With hundreds of police offices downtown still multiple shootings, people getting shot downtown during Black Expo. A number of people getting shots or murdered at black clubs around the city like Club Six on the west side, The Industry downtown, Jamal Tinsley's shot out in front of the Conrad, multiple fights and shootings at the skating rinks, shootings at Circle Center Mall and shooting and robberies and car jackings at Lafayette Mall. Shootings and gang violence and the State Fair. I can go on and on and on. Now Broad Ripple. (Shaking head side to side) Say It Loud, I'm Black and I'm Ashamed.

  5. Ballard Administration. Too funny. This is the least fiscally responsive administration I have ever seen. One thing this article failed to mention, is that the Hoosier State line delivers rail cars to the Amtrak Beech Grove maintenance facility for refurbishment. That's an economic development issue. And the jobs there are high-paying. That alone is worth the City's investment.

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