Mike McFeely is a WDAY (970 AM) radio host and a columnist for The Forum. You can respond to Mike's columns by listening to AM-970 from 8:30-11 a.m. weekdays.
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CHICAGO—If Carson Wentz reaches a point this season when he looks overmatched or out his element—you know, because he's a quarterback from a small school—somebody alert the media or the Internet or something. Monday Night Football at Soldier Field in front of a national television audience was not that time. Not even close. The rookie quarterback from North Dakota State looked as comfortable as a 11-year veteran, and actually outplayed one, as he led the Philadelphia Eagles to a 29-14 walloping of the Chicago Bears.
PHILADELPHIA—Carson Wentz shined. Robert Griffin III struggled. The Philadelphia Eagles won. The Cleveland Browns lost. One city exulted, another grimaced. You have to wonder what Cleveland fans are thinking about the big trade that sent their No. 2 overall NFL Draft choice to the Eagles this spring, allowing Philadelphia to pick Wentz. Browns players had their say Sunday, Sept. 11, after Wentz led the Eagles to a 29-10 victory in his pro debut. The former North Dakota State quarterback finished 22 of 37 for 278 yards and two touchdowns.
PHILADELPHIA—A couple of likely looking football fans stood by their car in a parking lot across the street from Lincoln Financial Field, the football stadium here in which the Philadelphia Eagles play. They were drinking beers and sharing what looked to be a cigarette following a Temple Owls college game in the stadium. So your intrepid North Dakota reporter, looking for man-on-the-street opinions of Carson Wentz, approached the more colorful-looking gentleman of the pair with a simple question: "Are you an Eagles fan?"
PHILADELPHIA—So your son is making his first start at quarterback before one of the toughest fan bases in the NFL. Feeling a little nervous, Doug Wentz? "I don't think it's going to be as bad as it was on his very first start with Iowa State a few years ago," said Carson Wentz's father. "I was a mess for weeks and months before that game." Really? A college start for North Dakota State was more nerve-wracking than one in the country's most popular league? Why?
FARGO—You should have visited Cannon Ball by now, Governor. Maybe you still could. It might help clear up some things, for all of us. You might have noticed, but possibly not, that we have two distinctly different narratives being pitched about the protest of the Dakota Access Pipeline and the gathering of Native Americans at the Sacred Stone Camp. It's confusing for many.
FARGO—Our hearts break, again. And this idea of "closure?" Overrated. We finally know what happened to Jacob Wetterling and even after all these years, even after we suspected this might have been the outcome all along, we hurt one more time.
FARGO—A western North Dakota legislator said of the North Dakota State University president: "The guy thought he was the second coming." "It's so obvious that he got carried away with his own ego and thought he could do just about anything he felt like doing. In a way, I feel sorry for him. So many people enabled him," the same legislator continued. A different western North Dakota legislator had this to say, also, about NDSU's president: "Either the man was arrogant to the extent that he did not think he was touchable, or he was incompetent."
FARGO—In an exclusive interview Thursday, Aug. 12, North Dakota State University president Dean Bresciani reiterated he welcomes an independent investigation into what he knew—and when he knew it—regarding controversial media coverage guidelines briefly implemented by the university's athletic department. A state Board of Higher Education committee voted Friday to hire an independent third party to look into whether Bresciani's handling of the situation violated any board policies.
The re-birth of the Red River Valley Speedway began a couple of years ago, when Nick Skalicky ran into Jake Bitker at another area race track. Skalicky brought up the topic of restarting racing at the fairgrounds track, in his words, "half-jokingly." "I said, 'Let's start up West Fargo again,'" Skalicky recalled."And I said, 'No,'" Bitker said.