Evel Knievel, IFC, Victoria's Secret And Me

Evel Knievel 1938-2007
Evel Knievel 1938-2007

I got to thinking about Evel Knievel this morning. He finally died at the end of last week. I say finally because Evel is a guy who had already died a thousand deaths--this time I think it'll stick. I first met Knievel in the early 70's. I Remember it like it was yesterday. Castle Rock Drag way in Castle Rock Colorado. He was there to jump some buses I believe.

I was the local sports guy and had agreed to come out, do a story on the event, and MC it. He was engaging, quick witted, a bit like Jerry Lee Lewis actually. What scared me was meeting his wife. She couldn't have been more than 30. She looked tired, a bit withdrawn, and I swear to God she had white hair, or it was going white anyway.

It struck me at the time what she must have gone through being married to Evel. Every time he launched himself on his motorcycle over whatever he was trying to jump, for that moment, she had no idea if he was going to come back alive. He was an amazing guy in many ways--an American original.

Which brings me to the IFC--it's that "fighting" league or whatever. I've come to the conclusion that it's just foolish. I know it's supposed to be an example of MMA, mixed martial arts, but it always struck me as just being silly. More thuggery than sport.

But not to form a quick opinion I went about finding a couple of MMA teachers. They told me they don't think it's silly, they think it's a crime. Any form of martial arts in it's purest sense is supposed to be about the beauty of the movement. It's also supposed to be about the beauty of the mental side, the ability to restrain one's instincts, to respect one's opponent. The IFC strikes me as sort of professional wrestling with less interesting people. Hey The Rock actually turned out to be a pretty good actor. Wonder where he learned his skills?

Speaking of faking it, has the Victoria Secret Fashion Show become just another television filler? Sort of like the "Peanuts Holiday Special," without the writing? Television has never met a marketing ploy it didn't like, but most of the time it at least tries to pretend it has some kind of value. Not in this one.

The Victoria Secret Fashion Show is little more than the VS catalog come to life. I'm not saying it's bad thing. I actually covered the very first one. Nothing beats being backstage with 20 VS models in their underwear. Except maybe being out front. They wear their underwear out there too. It's on Tuesday night.

And finally, talk about being caught with your underwear showing. The BCS, that ole college bowl group, was left with little chance for success when both Missouri and West Virginia lost on Saturday. It's not so much the match ups that we're left with, but it's that there's so much consternation about it. Should there be a college football playoff?

Could is a better would. "Should" makes you think it's important. "Could" merely means it can be made to happen. Yes it can. Will it? No. Why? Money. Of course that's the reason why so many people want it to happen. Money.

Who's #1?????? Hawaii. Sure beat Columbus. Evel has probably jumped them both.

'Mike On America' is in Denver all week. See you along the road.

Questions? Comments? mikeonamerica@nbcuni.com