The world in sports, 2014. Trust me.

12/31/2013 9:36 PM

01/01/2014 11:36 AM

After a clairvoyant, Nostradamus-like 12 months of predicting the previous year, the annual predictions column fell on hard times in 2013.

I accidentally prognosticated that Notre Dame would beat Alabama in the BCS title game, the Denver Broncos would win the Super Bowl, Justin Upton would sign with the Rangers, and Tony Romo would re-sign with the Cowboys for a mere $68 million (I missed by a mere $40 million) .


Anybody can have a bad year, I suppose. My Mayan calendar told me that.

But I’m due for a comeback. Herewith, for the 32nd consecutive year on these Star-Telegram pages, are my predictions for 2014.

No wagering, please.


Nick Saban denies latest round of Texas rumors after Alabama dominates Oklahoma in Sugar Bowl. “I don’t even know where Texas is,” Saban says … Stanford wins Rose Bowl, Clemson upsets Ohio State in Orange … After struggling early, Baylor pulls away from Central Florida to win Fiesta Bowl 34-20 behind four TD passes by Bryce Petty … Dorial Green-Beckham catches winning touchdown pass in final minute and Missouri defeats Oklahoma State in Cotton Bowl … In BCS title game, Tre Mason runs wild and Auburn makes it eight in a row for the SEC, defeating Florida State 41-27 … Texas names Art Briles head football coach.

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones reaffirms that Jason Garrett will be back in 2014 … Saying, “It’s important that we get younger at that coaching position,” Owner Jones replaces defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin, 73, with Vince Tobin, 70.

49ers knock off Packers on frozen tundra of Lambeau Field in NFL wild-card round … Saints master road woes and defeat Eagles … Colts, Bengals win AFC wild-card games … Seahawks beat Saints, 49ers survive Panthers in NFC divisional round … Seattle tops San Francisco for NFC crown … Peyton Manning, Broncos defeat New England for AFC title.

Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine and Craig Biggio elected to Baseball Hall of Fame … Japanese pitcher Masahiro Tanaka signs six-year, $110 million contract with Los Angeles Dodgers.


Charles Haley, Tim Brown, Jerome Bettis headline Pro Football Hall of Fame class … Blizzard closes New York airports for three days as Super Bowl week begins. NFL damage control for eventual arriving media includes souvenir mittens, snow boots and sleigh rides from LaGuardia Airport … KTCK-The Ticket assigned to “special” radio row for Super Bowl Week, doing all shows from frozen veranda on Seventh Avenue … In 15-degree temperatures, Broncos defeat Seattle to win Super Bowl XLVIII. Manning named game’s MVP … Jimmie Johnson wins Daytona 500 … Temperature in Sochi is 20 degrees warmer than Fort Worth as Winter Olympics begin … Host Russia wins the medals count with 38, 15 gold … Norway, Germany next in medals standings. USA wins 26 medals, 10 gold … Injured Lindsey Vonn stumbles, unable to finish women’s downhill … Arbitrator rules against Alex Rodriguez appeal, forcing him to begin serving 211-game suspension. A-Rod vows to take case to U.S. Supreme Court.


NCAA basketball regional winners include Michigan State over Kansas, Duke over Louisville, Oklahoma State over Syracuse and Arizona defeating Ohio State … Channel 4’s Mike Doocy disappears into Iowa cornfield. Clarice Tinsley has to do 9 p.m. FOX4 sports … Rangers’ Opening Day lineup versus Phillies’ Cole Hamels: Choo, Andrus, Fielder, Beltre, Rios, Choice, Profar, Soto, Martin. Starting rotation includes Yu Darvish, Derek Holland, Martin Perez, Alexi Ogando and Nick Tepesch. Matt Harrison begins season on disabled list.


Arizona defeats Duke for NCAA Final Four basketball title at AT&T Stadium … Matt Kenseth wins NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Texas Motor Speedway … Rory McIlroy wins Masters … Cowboys mascot Rowdy put down after tragic four-wheeler accident with Sky Mirror … Mavericks finish 45-37 and will meet Oklahoma City in NBA playoffs first round … Cowboys release DeMarcus Ware to free up $7.4 million in salary cap room … Stars finish 45-26-11 and miss playoffs for sixth year in a row … Chisholm Trail Parkway opens, allowing dozens of motorists to zip from Fort Worth Zoo area to Cleburne Whataburger in less than 10 minutes.


With first pick in NFL Draft, Texans select QB Teddy Bridgewater of Louisville … Cowboys, picking 19th, select tight end Jace Amaro of Texas Tech. “You can never have enough tight ends,” Jerry Jones responds … Minnesota Vikings select A&M’s Johnny Manziel with No. 8 pick … New Year’s Day wins Kentucky Derby … Chez Reavie wins HP Byron Nelson Championship … Dallas native Jordan Spieth, 20 years old, captures the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial … Mavericks fall to Thunder in NBA first round … TCU eliminated by host Rice in NCAA baseball regional … Rangers announce that Boomstick will be replaced on ballpark menu by Shin-Soo Choo-themed foot-long Kimchi Dog.


Miami Heat defeats Los Angeles Clippers, four games to one, to win NBA Finals for the third year in a row … Phil Mickelson finally ends U.S. Open drought, winning at Pinehurst … In all-California final, Cal State-Fullerton takes College World Series over UCLA … Milwaukee Bucks select Kansas’ Andrew Wiggins No. 1 in NBA Draft … Stars’ Valeri Nichushkin wins Calder Trophy as NHL’s rookie of year … Juan Gonzalez’s too-loose pants from 1999 Cooperstown exhibition game put up for sale on eBay … U.S. team defeats Ghana in World Cup soccer opener in Brazil, but falls to Portugal and Germany … Mexico loses to Croatia and also fails to advance beyond World Cup first round.


At MLB All-Star break, division leaders are Nationals, Cardinals, Dodgers, Red Sox, Tigers and Rangers … Host Brazil defeats Spain in World Cup final … Cowboys training camp opens with Tony Romo back at quarterback … Andy Murray, Simona Halep win Wimbledon singles titles … Major drug bust at Tour de France finds that all 219 riders tested positive for Merlot … As MLB trading deadline nears, Rangers acquire pitcher David Price from Tampa Bay for Rougned Odor, Alexi Ogando and Michael Choice … After 23-year layoff, right-hander Pete Delkus recalled by Minnesota Twins … Dale Hansen celebrates 60 years on DFW television.


Opening week of college football sees TCU defeat Samford, Texas over North Texas and Baylor knocking off SMU … TCU athletic department allows local media to use press box escalator. Despite all fears, Amon Carter Stadium doesn’t burst into flames … Johnny Football-less Texas A&M loses opener at South Carolina … NBA Mavericks sign free agent Luol Deng … On eve of season opener, Cowboys’ Romo re-injures back playing golf, placed on season-ending injured reserve list … Survey by Nielsen Co., reveals that more local fans identify Drew Bledsoe as a former Cowboys quarterback than Babe Laufenberg.


TCU grabs football wins over Minnesota and SMU … Texas, under new coach Briles, beats BYU and Kansas, but falls to UCLA at AT&T Stadium … Aggies get back on track with victories over Lamar, Rice, SMU and Arkansas … Baylor runs record to 4-0, beating Northwestern State, Buffalo and Iowa State … Cowboys, with Kyle Orton at quarterback, defeat Redskins, lose at Philadelphia, lose to Colts and win at Tennessee.

Lefty Price shuts out Athletics as Rangers clinch AL West title … White Sox defeat Yankees in AL wild-card play-in game … Giants beat Reds for NL wild-card spot … Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams win U.S. Open tennis titles … Rangers’ Ron Washington named national spokesman for Hair Club for Men.


Rangers defeat Red Sox, four games to three, to win AL pennant for third time … Dodgers knock off Cardinals for NL crown … Cowboys defeat Giants, but lose on road to Seahawks and Rams … Texas knocks off Baylor, loses to Oklahoma, but rebounds with victories over Iowa State and Kansas State … TCU falls to Oklahoma, defeats Baylor in Waco, loses at home to Oklahoma State, then knocks off Texas Tech … Texas Aggies survive scare at Mississippi State, lose to Ole Miss and on road at Alabama … In classic Game 7, Texas’ Yu Darvish outduels countryman Tanaka and Rangers defeat Dodgers to win first World Series crown … Feuding coaches Gary Patterson of TCU and Texas’ Art Briles agree to square off in closed-cage Muay Thai battle on Fox Southwest.


Longhorns defeat Tech and West Virginia, lose on road at Okie State, then close season with Thanksgiving win over TCU to finish 9-3 … Frogs get victories over West Virginia, K-State and Kansas … Baylor defeats Kansas, but follows with road defeat at Oklahoma, home loss to Oklahoma State and loss to Texas Tech at AT&T Stadium … A&M beats Louisiana-Monroe, closes with loss at Auburn, win over Missouri and home loss to LSU to finish 7-5.

Jimmie Johnson captures AAA Texas 500 at Texas Motor Speedway … Cowboys continue up-and-down ways, beating Texans at home and Jaguars in London, but losing road games to Redskins and Giants and dropping Thanksgiving Day game at home to 49ers … Randy Galloway’s return to radio scores top ratings in critical 70-to-85-year-old demographic.


TCU defeats Iowa State to finish 9-3 and earn invitation to play Southern Cal in the Alamo Bowl … Texas will play Auburn in Cotton Bowl … Aggies headed for Music City Bowl date against Maryland … Rookie Johnny Manziel ticketed by Minneapolis police for reckless behavior while ice fishing.

First-ever College Football Playoff field is set. Alabama will face Stanford in Rose Bowl and Ohio State will play top-seeded Florida State in Sugar Bowl. Winners will meet in January at AT&T Stadium … Cowboys defeat Cardinals, lose to Saints, fall on road at frigid Green Bay and defeat Eagles to finish season 8-8 … Owner Jones announces Garrett will return for next season … 4.8 magnitude earthquake in Arlington shatters AT&T Stadium’s Sky Mirror. Cowboys destined for seven more years of bad luck.

Have a happy 2015, everyone!

About Gil LeBreton

Gil LeBreton


Gil LeBreton has been entertaining and informing Star-Telegram readers for more than 34 years. He worked for newspapers in his hometown of New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Kansas City and Baltimore before finding his true home in Texas. Over the years he's covered 25 Super Bowls, 16 Olympic Games (9 summer, 7 winter), soccer's World Cup, the Masters, the Tour de France, saw Muhammad Ali box, Paul Newman drive a race car and Prince Albert try to steer a bobsled.

A Vietnam veteran, Gil and his wife Gail have two children -- J.P., a computer game designer in San Francisco, and Elise, an actress living in New York. Gil also once briefly held the WBC Junior Welterweight title belt -- he had to, because the guy he was interviewing, champ Bruce Curry, had to suddenly step into the men's room.

Email Gil at

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