Friday, June 5, 2009

Shaq has an unusal off-season

By Anthony Caruso III

Usually this time of the year, Shaquille O'Neal is guiding his team through the grueling playoffs. But this is the first time in 16-years that he missed the playoffs.

This is only the second time ever that he's missed the playoffs in his Hall of Fame career. He missed the playoffs during his rookie campaign of the 1992-93 season. And his Phoenix Suns team missed the playoffs this past season. It was the first time that Phoenix missed the playoffs since 2004.

But this has allowed Shaq to adventure into new paths. We usually see him in commercials and movies, like other celebrities. Yet, how many celebrities go to broadcasting school? Not many. But that's exactly what he did late last month at Syracuse University.

And coming this weekend, he will be one of a handful of celebrities to be the grand marshal of a race. This weekend in Texas, O'Neal will be the grand marshal at the IndyCar Series race Bombardier Learjet 500 in Texas. He will ride in the pit car with three-time Indianapolis Champion Johnny Rutherford.

This is the first time that he will be the grand marshal of a race.

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