The Gospel Truth

Wide to the Right | June 16, 2010

Part III

Madden 10 is the ultimate reality show.  There is nothing like it.

Of course I have not seen Madden XI yet.

I have had a bit more trouble with the new version.

Tyler tells me that because it is more realistic, it is much harder.   What he left out was–for people like me!

Gone are the days when I can just sit back and throw the long bomb.  I now have to work much harder for my points.

Maybe that’s a good thing. I must admit I was getting very cocky.

Madden football had affected the way I walk and my relationship with youngsters grew a little more aggressive.

After seeing Tyler and his buddies destroy some team in flag football, a couple of his friends said to me we hear you are good at Madden!

I just looked at them and giving my best Elvis drawl…I can play.

It got so bad that after an event that our Godson Evan performed in I started canvassing all the boys in his class about Madden.  I guess I was trying to drum up future opponents.  Evan was in the 1st grade.

By that time I had already destroyed the teenage grandson of a friend of ours, who told me he liked the NCAA Football game better.

Too bad I said to myself!  This is Madden Football, not some silly college game!

I Can Play This Game!

It go so bad I thought about hanging around the school yards to find some more Madden victims.

My wife counseled me against that by saying, to her knowledge there’s no Madden football in prison!

Good idea I said.  I wouldn’t want to go anywhere where there was no Madden football.

It was just as well because as I started playing Madden X things started going against me.  Many of my long drives end at the wrong side of the goal line with an interception or some other mishap.

I wasn’t beating the computer as much.  My son Matt started beating me a few times.  I think we stood at 11-7.

My nephew David beat me four games in a row…in his college dorm room and took great pleasure in destroying my confidence.

His older brother Jonathan did the same thing to me on my home field.

I couldn’t beat Tyler any more.  I could play with him but he always did something that I could not handle.

So we now played with both windows wide open just as reminder.

Tyler also did unpredictable things.  Well now there predictable.  He will go for it on 4th down…after I had killed myself stopping him and usually make it.

He would then punt when I wasn’t prepared for a kick on 4th down and beat me this past Easter twice because my returner fumbled both times for easy TDs.

He will often do an on-side kick on every kick-off.  When I play for it, he would kick regularly forcing my returner to sprint back like a madman. This cost me another game that afternoon.

I went back to the drawing board and started to practice against teams I thought Tyler would choose.

He pretty much plays any team now.  I guess I should consider that a compliment.

He has made a point of stopping my running game, which was one of my best features.  I could never run the corners the way he does

I have started playing solitary games and have won four in a row–two by last-minute field goals.

Kicking is not something I am good at.  Wide to the right explains my career as a player.

Many years ago–about 30BM–that’s Before Madden I used to play the old electronic football game with my brother-in-law.  It was the closest to reality they had back in the stone age.

He surprised me one Christmas with some new teams for his game and even though I was sick with the flu, we proceeded to play like the kids on the floor.

Well the game, which depended on vibrations from the electric current was really boring, because you could spend an hour until a player broke free or was touch-tackled.

Their idea of passing was silly and virtually useless.

So we added an ordinary deck of cards that revolutionized our play.

It took us three years of sporadic play to complete a season but we finally had our Super Bowl of his Vikings vs. my Bears.

He was whipping me 21-7 when he had to leave to go on a date.

I just sat there and studied the board.  I didn’t tamper with anything but just studied the game and thought cool thoughts.

When he returned for the second half I scored three straight TDs and got ready for the extra point, which I conveniently missed.  WIDE TO THE RIGHT!

Needless to say with just two minutes remaining, he engineered the final drive that tied the game and he did not miss the extra point and I lost 28-27.

I don’t think I ever beat him more than 2-3 times…if that many.

That’s why Madden has been so important to me.  But I digress.

In one of my practice  games with the computer, I suffered five interceptions and still won.

I noticed Tyler is always moving his fingers when he runs and also on defense.

I tried doing that but really had no idea what was happening.

I just need a little more guidance on how to work some of the buttons.

I often wish they had a Dummy Book for Madden X. I once got their Chess for Dummies but had to quit after eight pages because I didn’t understand any of it.

My son-in-law works for the Dummy publisher but discouraged me when he said that I would probably be the only one who would buy such a book.  He’s probably right.

I guess it is time to go to practice.  My once four-year-old son beat me three straight times—all humiliating losses after I had beaten him 49-40.  We now stand at 12-10.

I scored only 4 TDs in those losses and did not even have the satisfaction of hiding behind my shibboleth WIDE to the Right!



  1. Madden wouldn’t have a chance against the “4 Horse Men”….or Vince Lombasde’s 4 down defensive linemen.
    Oh, just dreaming.

    Comment by Jim Vondras — June 16, 2010 @ 2:44 pm

  2. I’ve been stuck on APBA Baseball since 1953. The original game was all based on probability charts and a few hundred rolls of the dice. That one still exists, but I’ve been playing the “Baseball for Windows” computer version now for about twenty years. It’s all thought, nostalgia, statistical reliability, and no eye-hand motor coordination challenges. That’s the way I like it in my game world.

    Comment by Bill McCurdy — June 16, 2010 @ 10:09 pm

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About author

After graduating from Holy Cross, Bill Borst earned an MA in Asian History from St. John's University and a Ph.D in American History from St. Louis University. (1972) A former New Yorker, he taught for many years in the St. Louis area, while also hosting a weekly radio show on WGNU from 1984-2006. He currently is a regular substitute for conservative Phyllis Schlafly on KSIV radio. (1320) He is the author of two books on social history, "Liberalism: Fatal Consequences," and "The Scorpion and the Frog: A Natural Conspiracy." He just retired as the Features editor of the Mindszenty Foundation Monthly Report. In his 11 years from 2003-2013 he wrote nearly 130 essays on Catholic culture and world affairs. Many in St. Louis also know him as the "Baseball Professor," because of a course that he offered at Maryville College from 1973-74. It was arguably the first fully-accredited baseball history course in the Midwest.The author of several short books on the old St. Louis Browns, he started the St. Louis Browns Historical Society in 1984. In 2009 his first two plays were produced on the local stage. "The Last Memory of an Ol' Brownie Fan," ran six performances at the Sound Stage in Crestwood and "A Perfect Choice" ran for two performances at the Rigali Center Theater in Shrewsberry. His third play, "A Moment of Grace," ran six performances at DeSmet High School in January of 2011with First Run Theater in January of 2011. He is currently working on a 4th play, "A Family Way," which is a comedy about a happy dysfunctional family. He can reached at







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