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Alligator Army Notebook: July 14

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- New Cleveland Indians prospect Matt LaPorta was 1-3 Sunday with a single and walk in the MLB Futures Game. This former WRUF baseball reporter beamed with pride when LaPorta was interviewed pregame by WRUF alum Erin Andrews, putting two of my favorite Gators on ESPN at the same time. (Speaking of Erin, tonight's SportsCenter will have Gainesville's "TitleTown" segment in between 45 minutes of Home Run Derby highlights.)

- The recent love fest for LaPorta has been cool, but I never really expected the kid would be good enough to be the centerpiece in one of the biggest trades in recent history. Maybe because I was a catcher I gravitated towards Brian Jeroloman (currently struggling for Toronto's Double-A affiliate), but LaPorta always seemed like a masher taking advantage of the aluminum bat. But those college doubles and homers have become pro doubles and homers.

- Andy Staples is with, and has a very good article about the effects of the economy on high school sports; from gas prices affecting travel to property tax rolls cutting athletic programs. It's a contrast to the University Athletic Association who will make $6.8 million this year. The UAA, technically separate from UF, can avoid the massive state ordered budget cuts which are aimed at making Florida degrees as valuable as the paper they are printed on. (/end political rant.) What is amazing about the UAA budget is women's basketball gets $1.1 million, when Men's and Women's Tennis continually go to the NCAAs and have no indoor facility and a third of the women's basketball budget.

- Dorian Munroe being out for the season only means one thing; Will "The Thrill" Hill. I'll take Hill and The Major at the safeties as long as they average one decapitation per game.

- USA Today tells us that you too can be like Dara Torres; 41, good looking, in shape and an Olympian. When I found out last week that Torres was also once a Weimer Hall kid, I immediately jumped on her bandwagon. Besides, so far it seems the only skeletons she has in her closet is from a divorce not steroids.