At the confluence of great sports on grass or artificial grass, not only do we have football, but we also have lacrosse. We're in the middle of the NCAA tournament. We have the Elite Eight coming up this weekend. Of course, the Final Four is always over Memorial Day weekend, and I don't think anybody has done more lacrosse games, at least over the last several years, than any Sharaf, who is also the voice of your Carolina Panthers. So we get to talk about two different things.
Anish, how you doing? Well, first off, Adam, this is a seminal moment here. This is the first time I've been invited on a radio show in the state of North Carolina, or the Carolinas, for that matter, where lacrosse is going to be a topic. There you go. That's a big step for the growth of the game. Obviously, you've got Duke in your backyard.
That's big. I look around here, I drive through Charlotte, I go to the dog park, and I've seen more and more kids, more and more people bringing out their lacrosse sticks, throwing it around. It's cool to see the sport growing in our area. Yeah, actually, we were actually in Charlotte this past weekend for a soccer event, and we had nothing to do Saturday night. We watched an absolute humdinger between Maryland and Army, which you were on.
I'm like, oh, look at that. Let's start, though, with the Panthers and all the excitement that surrounds Bryce Young, who had, you know, the quote is the, you know, the air quotes, the perfect, with the other things, the perfect minicamp. If you could, I know you're kind of, you're not brand new to it because we've already had a year under your belt, but you've been around, you know, the offices at Mint Street. They have to be just on cloud nine by now. Listen, I think the great part of this time of the year is hopeful. We haven't played a game. Preseason camp hasn't started.
Preseason games haven't started. You just have the number one pick you got, by all accounts, the best player in the draft, the best quarterback in the draft. And when you draft the quarterback at number one, there is an excitement. There is a hope that comes with it. And I think you're starting to see that.
You've got to remember a lot of these practices controlled environments. They're not putting a ton on his plate. I'm not trying to downplay how good Bryce Young may or may not be.
I just think this is the time of the year for those types of stories to come out where, you know, everybody is writing the feel good stuff because really there isn't much to go off of right now in terms of Bryce Young and his NFL prospects, but besides what you saw in college. Well, and what we saw in college, though, was pretty spectacular in terms of just being able to pilot an offense, get an offense out of trouble, big drives at end of games when nothing seemed to be going right over the course of games. The way I looked at it, if he were 6-1, even with the same frame, it would have been the biggest no brainer in almost ever judging him against the other quarterbacks in this field because he does everything else. He checks all of the other boxes. Is that that's not unfair, is it?
No, it's not unfair. And I will say this because the height thing and the size and his build that will follow him until he plays a game. He's going to have to show people it's not an issue at the NFL level. When I talked to him, I asked him about that and I said, I know you get tired of that question.
I thought his answer was enlightening. He said, I've always been the smallest guy going back from peewee football, playing in high school, playing in college. So for him, he doesn't view it as man. It's this great handicap I've had to overcome. It's sort of, all right, this is the cards that I've been handed and I've learned how to play them. So for him, it's not like, man, I'm small.
Well, I've always been small. The other thing, and I hope Panther fans can keep this in mind outside of bank of America stadium, there is a statue of a guy who was told his entire career, he was too small to play. And he is now in the hall of fame and the other guy, take cam Newton. For example, we love cam cam was built like a Panzer six, six, 30, two 40. Cam was cooked by the time he was 30 years old, if we can be honest. And it's not just cam Carson Wentz. Prototypical quarterback build has struggled to stay healthy. Andrew luck, prototypical quarterback build had to retire early due to injuries.
Lamar Jackson, who again is built like this freak athlete. He's had trouble staying healthy the last few seasons. So the build and the longevity questions that come with that to me, it's kind of, yeah, I guess if he takes one hit, sure, it could wreck him. But you could say that about guys who looked like they were indestructible as well. And we've seen that with cam Newton. We've seen that with one of our own. So again, I'm more curious to see when he steps out on the field, live bullets are flying at that point or his pass is getting batted down. Is he having trouble seeing over defenders and over the old line or is it going to be business as usual for him where he's been accustomed to this his entire football career and it'll just be all right.
Just another adjustment, just the guys are a little bigger, faster, stronger, but he's always been a little guy in a lot of ways. So, you know, is the question valid? I think it's 100% valid, but I just think you need to have a little context there as well. Like he could be built six, five and you know, a hundred or 230 pounds and you know, you could still get hurt. I did football on the college side with Brock Osweiler last year and Brock was six foot eight.
And you know, he's telling me at the age of 31 how he's got a bad back. So nothing's guaranteed at that position. Nothing's guaranteed in that league. No, in, in, in the sport.
I mean, it is just a vicious sport. And again, I keep going back to, he's always been small. This is not new. He's not suddenly, Oh man, now look how big everybody is. He just played in, not even arguably it's the best conference in college football with the most NFL prospects in all of college. And I think he did okay being five, 10, a buck 80 or whatever he is.
I'm not, it's not that I'm not worried about it. It'd just be foolish to be worried about it because as you pointed out, cam, luck, lance, they all got Ben Roethlisberger got to the league and was hurt all the time. He had to, he had to figure it out. Look, I'm a big fan of Bryce young to me. I think the Panthers did the right thing. And I think Scott fitters sort of let in on yesterday or rather was, I guess it was Friday when he went on with our afternoon guys that he was the guy we had in mind when we went from nine to one.
Uh, you don't get, yeah. And I think that, you know, the other part of it too is, you know, people want to bring up a CJ Stroud or, you know, we'll let us write the guys who potentially look the part, look the part. There have been a lot of guys at that position who have looked the part who have gotten GMs and head coaches fired.
Correct. Uh, there have been a lot of guys and listen, Sam Darnold was a good soldier the last year, but Sam Darnold is one of those guys, Sam Darnold looked the part didn't really materialize with the jets at a couple of moments last year with the Panthers, his overall career with Carolina, a disappointment, given where he was drafted, his overall career to this point, a disappointment. There's a lot of guys like that. There's also a lot of guys on the smaller side who didn't pan out. That position is so fickle. Um, like to me, Bryce Young's ultimate successes or failures in this league.
I don't think it's going to be size related. I just do it. I, I, I a hundred percent agree with you. All right. Before I let you go, because, uh, you are, uh, I I'm sure you're headed to one of these, uh, matches coming up. Well, maybe two of them this weekend, Duke, Michigan, Virginia, Georgia tech, Penn state army, Notre Dame and Johns Hopkins. Um, Hopkins just, I think they play in the big 10, if I'm not mistaken for lacrosse. I mean, the ACC is right here.
That sounds so weird, right? They, the ACC is right here. Uh, Hopkins, uh, which game are you headed to? Uh, I will be in Annapolis.
So I'll be doing Johns Hopkins, Notre Dame and the army Penn state. Oh, that's, uh, that's a pretty good, uh, pretty good run. What do you think of the blue devils?
Oh, I believe are the top overall seat. Yeah. One, I don't really make too much of the close call they had against Delaware over the weekend. A couple of years ago, Virginia had a close call and around one against Bryant and everybody said, ah, they're right for an upset in the quarter finals. They played Georgetown. They won 14 to three Duke is too talented, too skilled to me, the three teams from the ACC that are left the three that made it to Notre Dame and Virginia. Um, I would be stunned.
I really would be stunned if one of those three is not the ultimate champion. Duke has the pieces they do. Uh, Brennan O'Neill is a generational player, a transcendent player. I'm, I'm a big fan of just watching this Duke team. Goal-tending might be a little bit of an issue, but if you look at Duke's history, they've won three national championships with at best average goal-tending. Um, they're a bona fide national championship contender. And right now on paper, they have the easiest path of anybody to the national championship game.
Even though Virginia is on their side. Rakuten helps you be a smarter shopper and save money on just about everything. People all have things they need to buy, whether it's home essentials or a self-care treat just for you. With Rakuten, you get cash back on clothes, groceries, travel, and much, much more. Even better, you can stack cash back on top of other deals like store sales and credit card points. In case you're wondering, the stores on Rakuten are the ones you know and love and lots of cool ones waiting to be discovered, including Target, Lowe's, and Nike. When it comes to savvy shopping and saving money, Rakuten is a no-brainer. It's free and easy to join.
Just go to Rakuten.com now or download the Rakuten app today. That's R-A-K-U-T-E-N. Well, they wouldn't play Virginia until the championship. Michigan in the quarterfinals this weekend and Michigan again, first year in the NCAA tournament. They've never been on the stage.
They do have a kid. One of the best players, Josh Zawada, he's a Raleigh kid, so I'm sure there might be a little something there if he was passed up by Duke and then Duke would get either Army or Penn State in the semifinal and they would be a heavy favorite against either of those teams. Should be an absolute blast. I appreciate your time, Anish Sharaf.
Anish, at Anish ESPN on Twitter, voice of the Panthers and the voice of lacrosse on ESPN. I appreciate it. Have fun in Annapolis. Not a terrible place to spend a weekend, I've been told.
No, it's a great spot. Adam, appreciate you having me on. I appreciate you letting me talk Panthers and also talking a little lax. Absolutely, I'll talk to you soon.
See you. Rakuten helps you be a smarter shopper and save money on just about everything. People all have things they need to buy, whether it's home essentials or a self-care treat just for you. With Rakuten, you get cash back on clothes, groceries, travel and much, much more.
Even better, you can stack cash back on top of other deals like store sales and credit card points. In case you're wondering, the stores on Rakuten are the ones you know and love and lots of cool ones waiting to be discovered, including Target, Lowe's and Nike. When it comes to savvy shopping and saving money, Rakuten is a no brainer. It's free and easy to join. Just go to Rakuten.com now or download the Rakuten app today. That's R-A-K-U-T-E-N.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-05-16 18:08:56 / 2023-05-16 18:14:31 / 6