The answer is "no." On the cover of our August 2001 issue, we posed the question: Can Butch Davis lead the Browns from the doghouse to the Super Bowl? At the time, we had just sat down at the Brown's Berea headquarters with the confident new coach, who described Tim Couch as a "potential franchise quarterback" and expressed much hope for righting the runaway train that had escaped former head coach Chris Palmer's grasp. But season-ticket holders aren't fond of an endlessly struggling team. So Randy Lerner ditched Davis Nov. 30, giving him a $12 million parting gift to cover the remainder of his contract and help ice down that bruised ego. As for us, all we can do is enjoy our dog's-eye view and say, "We'll get 'em…" Nah, we don't want to hear it either.
Michael Corleone stormed the pages of The New York Times late last year as Mark Winegardner's "The Godfather Returns" ("Cleveland's Godfather Returns," December 2004) debuted at No. 7 on the hardcover fiction best-seller list. The "Crooked River Burning" author, chosen by Random House to pen the sequel to Mario Puzo's 1969 novel made famous by Francis Ford Coppola's film trilogy, had been all over the airwaves, from NBC to CNN to NPR, doing press for his continuation of the Corleone family saga. And though he says he'd write another book about the Corleones if Random House will have him, Winegardner's next novel will take on punk rock and porn in 1970s Cleveland. Now that's an offer we can't refuse.