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Once A-Fraud, always A-Fraud

I was so right about Alex Rodriguez.

I guess that is not a very humble thing to say, but truth is Alex is a fraud, always has been -- just look at every single team he has played for and how little of consequence they have won. And yet so many fans remained oblivious, willfully ignorant or just snowed about his egomaniacal, yet shockingly sensitive self. Many were rooting for him to defend baseball against the scourge of Barry Bonds.

And now comes a Sports Illustrated report basically detailing why A-Fraud is far, far worse on the fraud scale.

Barry was a steroid cheat. Alex was a cheat, a fake and a liar.

Or so says SI, who reported Alex had tested positive for steroids in 2003, yes, while playing for The Rangers and while being feted for winning a home run title and an MVP award. Nobody should be shocked any more to hear any big-name player used steroids. Everybody is under a cloud of suspicion.

What makes Alex particularly annoying is how sanctimonious he has been about steroids, his public denials and his “my body is a temple” nonsense. He verbally seemed to be looking down on all of the unwashed masses who did not have his talent, his work ethic, his good looks and thereby was forced into a life of the cream and the clear. And all along, he was just like them.

He was on the juice, if SI is to be believed.

And I do believe them or else why did Mr. Strong Denial have no comment when approached by the mag before the story ran. Yes, in typical A-Fraud fashion, when approached in a Miami gym, he declined comment with a terse “Talk to the players union. I’m not saying anything.”

Of course, he isn’t. Because what can he say?

About the only thing he could say is “Jen is right. I am a fraud, and always have been.”

So while I ponder what, if any, backlash A-Fraud experiences off of his brush with steroids, let’s chow down on a helping of Monday Morning Musings.

1. Can we talk about the elephant in the room? A decent hunk of big-time baseball players linked to steroids have Ranger backgrounds.

Ken Caminiti, and Mr. Steroid himself Jose Canseco.

Raffy, Pudge, Juan.

Gary Matthews Jr. and now A-Fraud.

Of course, this is not a coincidence. It can’t be. I mean, I guess it can be but only if you are also inclined to believe that Barry Bonds did not knowingly take steroids and believe that Andy Pettitte misremembered and Mark McGwire has just been on a really good post-retirement, head-shrinking diet.

There are very few coincidences with the steroids era in baseball. And the liars and miscreants have time and again turned out to be the ones telling the truth.

2. Big props to Cowboys QB Tony Romo for not faking any love for T.O.

In an interview with Babe Laufenberg on Channel 11 on Sunday, Romo tackled a wide range of issues, from his nonchalance to leadership to being a celebrity QB.

And Romo said a lot of good things.

His best answer, though, came in response to a very simple question about whether he wants T.O. as a teammate. And his non-answer intimates a lot about how this team must feel about its “No. 1 receiver”, especially when cameras are off.

“I think everybody on our team wants everybody back,” Romo said. “We want to make another run and do it and show everybody that we can. I don’t know. You know, I don’t make any decisions. I don’t pretend to think that I can control anything in that regard.

“… But I know there’s always change on the football team. I’m not talking about T.O. I’m talking about, we're going to have different guys than we had last year at a lot of different positions, I'm sure. We’re bringing guys in. We’ll have to get used to some others. We’ll see.”

This is hardly Romo calling for T.O., or even really an attack on T.O. What it also wasn’t was a plea to bring T.O. back which is what I think we would have heard had he been asked about I don’t know, say, Jason Witten.

3. Props deduction to Romo for his defense of Cowboys coach Wade Phillips.

I think Wade needed to be fired. I think keeping him is a gigantic mistake. This is not about that. Romo has every right to defend his coach, and probably needs to do so.

His answer on why to bring Wade back, however, is lacking.

“I think he’s done a lot of good things you guys don’t get a chance to see,” Romo said.

It is a sign that Romo doesn’t really get it because, like Big Bill loved to say, don’t tell us about the labor, just show us the baby. And nobody believes or really cares about these behind-the-scenes good things because they are not translating into playoff wins. And this is still how people are judged in this town.

4. The Bad Roy Williams also needs a tall glass of STHU.

My TiVo had a full load Sunday, and I almost wish it hadn’t. I vomited a little in my mouth listening to Cowboys safety Roy Williams talk to NBC 5’s Newy Scruggs.

Sorry Newy.

He blamed scheme and selfish teammates and T.O.’s trickle down effect and his contract without a single word about how badly he has stunk and what he needs to do.

And Roy personifies what is wrong with this Cowboys team. Hardly anybody has any personal accountability. Or how else do you explain him actually believing his problem is not his fat-butt, unmotivated self but scheme.

“I’m not playing the position I played in my first three years when Mike Zimmer was here and we ran a 4-3. OK?” he said. “I got used in the defense. I don’t make excuses. I don’t need to make excuses. But just take my first three years and my last four years and see the difference in where I’m lined up. Yes, I'm better in a 4-3 scheme than in a 3-4 because it’s gap sound.”

Um, Roy, that’s called an excuse.

5. I am trying to recall the last Cowboy to say “That’s on me. I need to be better.”

Anybody? Bueller?

I am probably missing a player, or two, although, it is pretty sad that nobody immediately springs to mind after that ugly butt-kicking in Philly.

6. Help me understand how Clancy Pendergast is unemployed and Coach Cupcake is not.

My girl brain is having a hard time computing how the defensive coordinator of a perennially mediocre team who reached the Super Bowl this season was fired, while the head coach of a Cowboy team with Super Bowl expectations that failed to reach the playoffs is returning.

7. SteRod? Or ARoid?

Mark me down as a big fan of SteRod, as in The SteRod Era. So which nickname do you like better for Alex?

8. I did not watch a second of the Pro Bowl.

I just cannot force myself to care.

9. Your homework assignment was to answer the question “How sick does seeing The Steelers win another Super Bowl make you?”

We here at LBOH headquarters were a little stunned (OK, a lot stunned) by how many of y’all have very little respect for either Romo or T.O. And how many believe this Cowboy locker room shares this lack of respect.

So in no particular order, as we do every week, we present my favorite responses:

Justin Sanders writes “watching the Steelers win another Super Bowl is like watching an ex-girlfriend marry a guy who was once considered your equal but now has a better job, more money and the girl of your dreams” while Alicia Willis in Phoenix adds “how sick am I? I’d rather be stuck at home with morning sickness AND the 48 hour flu-bug than stomach listening to one more analyst shower accolades upon the Steelers. At least, when you finally get over the flu and morning sickness you have something to show for your misery … Dallas doesn’t have anything right now but a circus act.”

And Douglas Weil of Nyon, Switzerland, who stayed up until 12:30 a.m. to watch on a BBC feed writes “Wasn’t it nice the way the Cardinals threw Cowboys’ fans a bone, briefly imitating our team with missed tackles and holding calls. And then again, showing us the way by making plays and fighting to the end AS A TEAM?”

My favorite comes from Tim Stewart of McKinney, who writes “About as sick as having Jerry Jones as General Manager and Wade Phillips as Head Coach of the Boys.”

10. Your turn: Do you care any more if athletes use steroids? Please remember to include your name AND LOCATION for credit purposes. I am all about credit.

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