* We had The Eagle’s Joanna Chadwick on radio this morning and she mentioned that North athletic director Brian Becker is interested in the possibility of playing one game in the old gym after the new North gym opens in the fall. Interesting notion and I’m all for it. I love the old gym and would love to see it continue to be in occasional use. So here’s my suggestion: Play East in the old gym every basketball season. The North-East rivalry has roots going back decades in Wichita. There are still thousands of people in town who went to one of the two schools way back when they were the only two public high schools in Wichita. Continuing the rivalry in North’s historic gym makes perfect sense to me. What about you?
* How fitting is it that the old North gym’s curtain call happens during Conner Frankamp’s senior season? Great stuff. I’m so glad that Frankamp’s full career happened while the old barn stood. He’s made it an even more mythical place.
* Could Detroit sneak up on Wichita State in their BracketBusters game Saturday afternoon at Koch Arena? It’s possible. The Titans can score and are unlike most of the teams the Shockers have played recently. They remind me some of Creighton, in that they’re a score-first team. It should be an interesting style, one that will test WSU’s defense. Remember, the Shockers have allowed opponents to reach 70 points only twice this season, and one of those was in overtime.
* Who wins the big-category Academy Awards on Sunday night? Glad you asked.
* Director: Steven Spielberg, “Lincoln.” Sometimes when I watch movies, I’m amazed at the attention to detail in every aspect. This one hits it out of the park, and that’s credit to Spielberg, who knows a thing or two about making a movie. I can’t imagine how gratifying it must be to see a finished product like this one hit the screen.
* Supporting actress: Anne Hathaway, “Les Miserables.” This is one of the three Oscar-nominated movies I haven’t seen, but I plan to see a couple of them this weekend. But many of my friends who have seen this movie believe Hathaway is a lock. So I’ll go with them.
* Supporting actor: What a tough category. Alan Arkin, Robert De Niro, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, Christoph Waltz and Tommy Lee Jones. Incredible. I’ll go with Jones, even though De Niro was great in “Silver Linings Playbook.” But all of these guys are great in whatever they do. I just hope Jones smiles if he wins. And I’m not a smiler. I do smirk at times, though.
* Actress: I’m pulling for either Jessica Chastain of “Zero Dark Thirty” or Jennifer Lawrence of “Silver Linings Playbook.” My opinion here could change after I see Emmanuelle Riva in “Amour” this weekend. I’m picking Chastain.
* Actor: Looks like a runaway to me, even though I loved Denzel Washington in “Flight.” This one has to go to Daniel Day-Lewis, whose portrayal of Abraham Lincoln will still be shown to school kids in 50 years. One for the ages.
* Picture: “Argo” is now the clear-cut favorite to win. I find that odd, since it appears Day-Lewis, Jones and Spielberg are favorites in their categories. So if a movie has the best director, supporting actor and actor, how does it not win best picture? I’m going with “Lincoln,” because it’s the best movie I’ve seen this year. No offense to “Argo.”
* Which folk rock band do you like better? Avett Brothers, Lumineers, Mumford and Sons? Neat story in the latest “Entertainment Weekly” about the strong revival of this music genre.
* I loved the two-part documentary “History of The Eagles” on the Showtime network last weekend. In fact, I’ve watched the first two hours three times and the final hour twice. Did I learn anything? Well, maybe that Glenn Frey, one of the co-founders with the band along with Don Henley, is a really harsh businessman. It was also neat to see the interviews with the past band members, especially Bernie Leadon.
* The old concert footage of the Eagles was great. I first say the band at Levitt Arena in November, 1976, when the “Hotel California” album was the hottest thing going. I was 21 at the time. Wow. Was I ever 21? I had been working at The Eagle for almost two years the first time I saw the Eagles. Hang with me, I’m having a moment here.
* The three basketball players I most imitated in my backyard as a kid were: 1) Dave Stallworth; 2) Warren Armstrong (Jabali); 3. Elvin Hayes.
* My 40th high school reunion is coming up this summer. If there is a reunion. I haven’t heard about one. Is someone trying to tell me something by not telling me something? I’m paranoid and proud of it.
* My wife is cold-blooded. I’m warm-blooded. It makes for interesting thermostat discussions when we’re both at home on snow days.
* Kansas State’s Bruce Weber is in the mix as national college basketball coach of the year. He’s not a frontrunner, though. That status belongs to Miami (Fla.) coach Jim Larranaga.
* How badly did Kansas basketball fans want to wring Naadir Tharpe’s neck before he made the game-winning shot at Oklahoma State on Monday night? Tharpe is a fascinating player. I’m not sure about that guy.
* Has anyone in recent memory had a more fly-under-the-radar outstanding season than the Jayhawks’ Travis Releford? He’s getting it done in all facets and is another example of the power of being a senior in today’s college basketball world.
* Congratulations to former Shocker baseball standout Conor Gillaspie, who was traded today from the San Francisco Giants to the Chicago White Sox. Gillaspie was going nowhere fast with the Giants, blocked at third base by Pablo Sandoval. He’ll have a better opportunity in Chicago, where journeyman Jeff Keppinger is the frontrunner at third base.
* Thanks for reading. Have a great weekend. Sounds like more snow coming late Sunday/Monday. Please post your snow pictures to Facebook and to all the media outlets because they’re just darling.