'God Bless' changes tune of manager


Photographs by AP/BILL KOSTROUN

The discussion between Cincinnati Reds Manager Bryan Price (center) and umpires Shane Livensparger (left) and Jerry Layne was just starting to heat up, but then “God Bless America” began.

Credit "God Bless America" with the save.

There's been a lot of discussion about patriotic songs and sports in the year since Colin Kaepernick decided to kneel for the national anthem. We've seen and heard a lot, but we've never quite seen a moment like the one starring Cincinnati Reds Manager Bryan Price. It's equal parts heartwarming and hilarious.

During the Reds' game Sunday against the New York Mets, Price was giving two umpires the business after his second baseman, Scooter Gennett, had been ejected for tossing his shin guard after a called third strike. Problem was, Price's argument with the umps came at the same time that "God Bless America" played between innings at Citi Field. So Price faced a decision: anger or patriotism.

"He stopped before the steam came out of his ears, took off his cap and stood to listen to 'God Bless America.' " wrote Mike Oz of Big League Stew. "The umpires -- Shane Livensparger and Jerry Layne -- did the same. Price's heart was in the right place, even if his face still looked like he was ready to curse out an ump."

Once the song ended, the tenor of the argument had changed. Price was less angry and didn't get ejected. After the game, Price credited "God Bless America" for keeping him from being sent to the showers early. He told Zach Buchanan of The Cincinnati Enquirer:

"God Bless America gave me time to realize that was not the time to get ejected," Price said.

Vacating a loss?

When USC hosts Texas on Saturday, it will mark the first time the two schools square off since the 2006 Rose Bowl, when the Longhorns won the national title thanks to a Vince Young touchdown run with 19 seconds remaining to spoil USC's perfect season.

But according to USC, that game -- the team's only loss of the season -- was vacated alongside the team's 12 victories from that year. You see, USC had to vacate those victories amid the NCAA-Reggie Bush saga that caused the Trojans star running back to lose his Heisman Trophy. In USC's game notes for this weekend's game against the Longhorns, it includes the Rose Bowl loss among the vacated games from that season.

This is not a joke. USC says its official record all-time against Texas is 4-0 -- not 4-1 -- several times in the game notes.

"Say what you want about the NCAA's practice of vacating wins [it's silly], but vacating losses just makes absolutely no sense," wrote Sam Cooper of YahooSports.com. "That's why official records say USC was 0-1 that season even though we all saw those wins with our own eyes."

Penalty of the day

From RJ Currie of sportsdeke.com:

"A Massachusetts man was knocked down and arrested after confronting a mounted police officer and trying to punch his steed. It goes in the books as a horse tackle collar."

Sports quiz

USC has not played a team from the SEC in a bowl game since Jan. 1, 1987. Name the opponent and the bowl.

Sports answer

Auburn in the Florida Citrus Bowl. Auburn won 16-7.

Sports on 09/13/2017

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