The Sports Informant

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The Weekly Snitch: Jan. 25, 2010

The Sacramento Kings are back on the track to the league cellar, with one of the worst months imaginable. But there was a silver lining in Sacramento sports last week. I wrote a full column about Austin Collie’s efforts Sunday helping the Indianapolis Colts reach the Super Bowl, but he deserves mention in The Weekly Snitch, too.

The Growth of Collie

El Dorado Hills has one of its sons in the Super Bowl, and he’s not just skating in as a benchwarmer.

Covering Collie in high school football, I knew the kid was going to be something special. I watched him singlehandedly beat teams with kick and punt returns, pull off amazing catches downfield against double-teaming defenders and take a handoff from the backfield and end up in the end zone.

There wasn’t anything Collie couldn’t do. If a quarterback could throw to himself, he probably would have lined up under center.

Because of that, watching Collie thrive all season long as a rookie in the NFL this year didn’t surprise me. He’s a superstar by nature, and all he needed was an opportunity to shine.

The one-time Oak Ridge Trojan standout receiver filled in for an injured Anthony Gonzalez early in the season and never looked back.

In college, Collie led the nation in receiving before turning pro his junior year in 2008, and that was after coming back from a two-year Mormon mission. In just one regular season with the Colts, he had 60 receptions, 676 yards and seven touchdowns, and wasn’t even in the top three of the depth chart to start the year. In just two playoff games he has 11 receptions, 175 yards and two touchdowns.

The guy’s an animal, stepping into the spotlight of every stage he walks on to. In just two weeks, he’ll get to do it again, and could bring a Super Bowl ring back to El Dorado Hills. That’s incredible.

Kings can’t win on road

So far, 2010 has not been kind to the Sacramento Kings. After an impressive start to the season, the hot Kings are looking more and more like last year’s dismal squad, losing 11 of 12 games in January so far. With three games to go this month, two of them at home, the Kings are desperately looking for a win.

The Sacramento Kings are struggling in January and looking for answers. (Photo courtesy Tom Paniagua)

The Kings, who already had a reputation of being terrible on the road, lost every away game this month, including a nine-day road trip to the east coast that had Sacramento lose six straight. Sacramento is currently on a seven-game losing streak.

In one month Sacramento has gone from the darling of the NBA to the league’s dumpster. Talk of the future is back to talk of disappointment. The Kings need a dramatic turnaround, starting this week, or the fans that have jumped back on board the purple wagon will go running for the hills again.

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