Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The Tourney and a Crazy Race

Yes I understand it has been a while but with work picking up I find it hard to write all the time. I also made the "wise" decision to join a race team running across Florida. The Sunset to Sunrise Relay has teams run 180 miles from Ft. Myers to Jensen Beach. Each team has 12 members who each run three legs of the race. Our team was a little shorthanded with only nine people so some of us had to pick up the slack. I ran four legs and 21 miles. I'm still sore three days later. It was a good time and something I can say I did but I'm not sure if I will ever do it again.

Even with all of the tournament games and crazy upsets I still have a shot at placing in my pool. I can't win but finishing in the money is a victory. It's late but here are some thoughts on some of the tournament games.

1's vs 16's - Blowouts all around. Was there any doubt?

2's vs 15's - K State and Ohio St. dominated. Morgan State hung around with West Virginia before the Mountaineers flexed their muscles. Apparently Robert Morris was robbed by bad calls in losing to Villanova in OT. I didn't see the game but the hoops Gods got Nova back later.

3's vs 14's - Baylor won a tight one while Pitt and New Mexico took it to Oakland and Montana. Ohio pulled off a stunner against Georgetown knocking out one of my Sweet 16 teams on the first day.

4's vs 13's - From the moment the matchups came out I liked Murray State against Vandy (Jim and KA can vouch for me). The Racers are really athletic and Vandy struggles with those types of teams. It took a buzzer beater to win but Murray State made me look good. Maryland took down a game Houston team. I don't know why everyone didn't like the Big 11 teams but Purdue and Wisconsin both produced big wins.

5'2 vs 12's - There is always at least one upset in this matchup. I got mine wrong. I got Butler beating UTEP and Michigan State beating New Mexico State. Temple coach Fran Dunphy had never lost to one of his former assistants and picked a bad time to start in losing to Steve Donahue and Cornell. I also picked the wrong Aggies when I thought Utah State would beat Texas A&M.

6's vs 11's - Big East teams blew it for me as Notre Dame and Marquette both went down. Xavier and Tennessee did pull off strong victories.

7's vs 10's - Half right and half wrong again. I couldn't pick the Gators so that was easy. Clemson and Richmond lost games they never had a shot of winning. Clemson coach Louis Orr still hasn't won a tournament game.

8's vs 9's - I couldn't pick the Noles to beat Gonzaga because the Zags have too much offense. FSU struggles to score points. It hurt but my money was on it. UNI's Ali Faroukmanesh nailed the first of huge threes to life UNI to victory. I wish Gary Johnson could make free throws and Texas would have beaten Wake Forest. Cal blew out Louisville.

Kansas vs UNI - Thank you Ali Faroukmanesh for ruining my bracket.

Maryland vs Michigan St. - And thanks to you Corey Lucious for taking another of my Sweet 16 teams.

Tennesee vs Ohio - Georgetown ruined this in the first round.

GT vs Ohio St. - Jon Diebler fills it up and the Tech guards can't hang with Evan Turner.

Syracuse vs Gonzaga - The Zags had no shot and the Cuse zone ate them up.

Butler vs Murray St. - The Bulldogs won the matchup of mid-majors by playing the same style as the Racers but better.

Xavier vs Pitt - The Musketeers won this time around in a rematch of last year's Sweet 16 battle.

BYU vs K St. - Jimmer Fredette couldn't shoot the Cougars over the Wildcats backcourt of Denis Clemente and Jacob Pullen.

Wake vs UK - The Deacs never had a shot.

Cornell vs Wisconsin - I had neither of these teams going to the Sweet 16 anyway.

Washington vs New Mexico - I had Marquette going from this spot anyway but the Huskies pulled off a nice win.

West Virginia vs Mizzou - DaSean Butler refuses to let his team lose.

I did get two teams in the final four by getting WVU and Duke into it. How does your bracket look?

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

UConn Women, Championship Week, and Big Ben

The UConn Womens Hoops team has again won 70 straight. 71 to be exact heading into the tourney. The question that keeps coming up is is all dominating way UConn keeps winning good for women's hoops? No team has come close to beating them and they are beating teams by an average of 15 points a contest. The Huskies have also beaten the number two team in the country three times. I guess its good for women's hoops that they're winning, I mean at least we're talking about it. What do you think about UConn's dominating ways, and will you watch more women's hoops now?

This a great time of year. All week births into the Big Dance are being decided, every game that's played counts. The teams that are on the fringe are hoping that the right teams wins each of the little conference tournaments. Last night, Gonzaga stole an at-large bid after losing the conference tournament and automatic qualifier to St. Mary's. Later this week the Big 6 play their conference tournaments. It should interesting as their hasn't been a dominant team in college hoops this year.

This thing with Ben Roethlisberger is troubling. Yes I even find myself saying that this girl is in it for a money grab, but why does Big Ben keep butting himself in these situations. Last year he was accused of sexual assault in Lake Tahoe and now again in Georgia. I'm not sure if Ben Ben needs to change the company he keeps but he needs to change something.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Justin Upton got paid, what does it mean for B.J.

It just scrolled across the bottom line that Arizona Diamondbacks have agreed to pay outfielder Justin Upton $51.25 million over the next six seasons. Upton is 22 years old and going into his fourth season in the Show. He was an All-Star last season after hitting .300 with 26 home runs and 86 RBI. He also stole 20 bases.

While Justin deserved the deal and Arizona may win in the long run by buying out some arbitration and free agent years, this puts his brother B.J.'s employer the Rays in a bind. We all know the story of B.J. Upton. He was rushed through the system as an infielder, then finally found a position in the outfield. After hitting .300 a few seasons ago, B.J. struggled at the plate and with his effort. His defense has been solid for someone learning the position, but he still hasn't completely fulfilled the potential that made him the second pick in 2002.

The Rays just won their arbitration hearing with B.J. to pay him $3 million this season. With Justin getting such a big deal, is B.J. going to want to get a large long term deal?

Now I have been a big B.J. supporter, I'm not sure how this is going to shake out. The Rays have budget issues and Carl Crawford and Carlos Pena are free agents after the season. Pena is expendable, but CC has to be kept around. The Rays have to let people move on at some point, but is now the time for B.J. to go? What do you think the Rays should do with Desmond Jennings on the way and B.J. looking for a payday?

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Ryan Miller was Great and Other Thoughts from the Weekend in Sports

As you probably know Canada beat the USA in OT to claim the gold medal in hockey. The game was great with Zach Parise scoring a late goal to tie the game. Unfortunately, Sidney Crosby ended it. This was a great weekend in sports. The top three teams in college hoops all went down and the Winter Olympics is coming to an amazing close.

- Ryan Miller was gangsta throughout the entire Olympics. The USA goalie kept his team in every single game and led them to victory every time except the gold medal game. Miller was peppered with a lot of shots throughout the tourney and came up big most of the time. He was the best player on the ice in many of the games. Now we'll see if Buffalo can ride the hot hand into the NHL playoffs.

- Canada made the right choice in changing goalies. Martin Brodeur has been the Canada goalie for years but he didn't look crisp early in the tourney. Switching to Roberto Luongo paid dividends.

- Way to clean up the garbage Zach Parise. Just when the USA looked dead Parise put in a goal to tie the game. Luongo had been giving up rebounds a lot and Parise was in the right place at the right time.

- I will be watching more hockey this season. The Olympics helped me to identify with more players. I love the Flyers but Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews are giving me a lot of reasons to watch the Blackhawks.

- The USA defense looked tired late in the game. Brain Rafalski and Ryan Suter played a lot of minutes in the game and it showed.

- I love the P&G commercials with the Olympians Moms.

- Athletes don't win silver and bronze, they lose gold. Do you think USA Hockey was happy receiving their silver medals?

- I like watching the NFL combine, but too much is made about what players do in shorts. Haven't NFL guys been watching all of the players all season?

- My friend Josh doesn't think Tim Tebow can change positions in the Show. I do.

- After all of the hoops this weekend I can't wait for Conference Tourney season and March Madness. I'll post my bracket on here and I still think Kansas will win it all.

- Purdue's title hopes went out the window the Robbie Hummel's torn ACL.

- Danica Patrick isn't ready for NASCAR.

- Jimmie Johnson has decided to dominate early in the season instead of just when Chase time comes.

Let me know your thoughts on the weekend in sports.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Rough Week for RBs, Finally some HGH testing

Earlier this week the San Diego Chargers released franchise cornerstone LaDanian Tomlinson. Yesterday my team the Philadelphia Eagles released Brian Westbrook. Both moves made too much sense not to happen.

For the better part of the decade, LT was the best running back in football. We all know the numbers: single season touchdown record, 100 catches in a season, 2006 MVP and many others we could go on. However, as many running backs do, he reached 30 and his numbers started to decline. This past season he had the worst season of his career. With the money owed to him the Chargers had to let him go. I will give San Diego some points for bring LT in and speaking with him in person before announcing it.

Brian Westbrook has been one of my favorite Eagles, and one of football's most productive backs over the last five seasons. He has struggled with injuries and was always listed as questionable, but he produced when Philly needed him. He was the biggest playmaker in an offense that didn't have any until DeSean Jackson came along. My favorite Westbrook play was at the end of the Cowboys game a few years ago, when he took a knee at the one instead of going into the end zone. Westbrook will be missed.

As for both of the backs, I wonder if anyone will pick them up and where they will end up.

Secondly, baseball is finally starting to get it. After years of rejecting steroid testing, MLB finally implemented it. Now, Minor League Baseball has said they will add HGH testing as well. It's only a matter of time before the majors follow suit. This is an important time for MLB. With the NFL and NBA having labor disputes on the horizon, MLB needs to capitalize. Hopefully, they can finally start cleaning up the game.

Monday, February 22, 2010

USA vs Canada and other thoughts from the Weekend

What a hockey game last night. Team USA took on host Canada in hockey and defeated them 5-3. It wasn't the Miracle on Ice of 1980, but it was a great win. Defenseman Brian Rafalski scored two goals and assisted on another while goalie Ryan Miller made 42 saves.

- Before the Games started analyst Jeremy Roenik said Miller would have to be the MVP for Team USA to win the gold medal. Miller was up to the task last night as the Canadians out shot Team USA 45-22. While this win doesn't guarantee a medal, it gives the young Americans some much needed confidence.

- The veterans came out to play last night. Captain Jamie Langenbrunner scored a goal, center Chris Drury scored a goal and both played outstanding defense from their forward positions. We talked about the way Rafalski played. If Team USA can keep getting these performances from these guys, a medal is a good possibility.

- Lost in the shuffle was how well Patrick Kane played. He didn't score any goals but he was the only player who seemed able to put pressure on the Canadian defense.

- While the Miracle on Ice was a memorable win, does anyone remember that that game didn't win the gold medal?

- Talk about redemption for Bode Miller. After being shutout four years ago, Miller has won three medals this year and is still in the running for two more.

- Jimmie Johnson dominated the California race yesterday. The four time defending champion is picking up where he left off last season. That does not bode well for other drivers trying to dethrone him.

Let me know what you think about the hockey win and other Winter Olympic Sports as the last week of the games begins.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Quick Hits from the Super Bowl

When people ask me why I watch every single game, I always answer you never know when you'll see an instant classic. Its why I stay up until 2:00 a.m. watching the Big East Semifinal or watch a late season NFL game that doesn't mean anything. Last night's Super Bowl was a great game. I didn't have a dog in the fight so all I really wanted was one of the quarterbacks having to drive their team for a winning score late in the game. Mission accomplished.

- Why winning this game would have put Peyton Manning in a new class of QBs who have won multiple Super Bowls, losing doesn't diminish how great he is still.

- The Saints dropped balls in the first half, the Colts dropped them when it mattered most in the second.

- Where was Reggie Wayne the entire game?

- Drew Brees is great. Rough first quarter but he was great the rest of the game. Deserved the MVP.

- I thought when the Colts stopped the Saints near the goal line at the end of the first half, Indy was about to extend their lead and put the game away early. I thought Peyton would drive them down the field for some points, get the ball back to start the second half, and put more points on the board.

- Ballsy call by Sean Payton to go for the onside kick. That play changed the momentum of the game and kept Peyton Manning on the side line a bit longer.

- Dwight Freeney was able to go and even recorded a sack in the first half. In the second half however, he never seemed able to get right and Brees was never hit in the second half.

- I thought that once the Colts were able to establish the run Indy would pull the game out. The Saints just stepped up whenever they needed to.

- Big play by Tracy Porter with the pick-six. Reggie Wayne looked to have finally gotten on the same page with Peyton on the drive, but the Saints were ready for that play. They blitzed and it looked like Wayne tipped the route by stutter stepping which enabled Porter to jump the pass.

-The Porter play looked similar to the one that Eli Manning hit in his Super Bowl win. Eli sent his receiver on a pump and go while Peyton threw the slant and Porter took it to the house.

- The pass Manning threw to Dallas Clark over and in between five defenders is one of the best passes you'll ever see.

- Great play by Lance Moore on the two-point conversion.

- Can't forget Saints Garrett Hartley making three field goals from longer than 40 yards.

- A couple of years ago the Colts picked up Adam Vinatieri to kick for them. Vinatieri got hurt late in the season and the Colts picked up Matt Stover. When the decision to choose one for the postseason came up, they chose Stover. Not saying Vinatieri would have made the 51-yarder Stover missed, but that was the Colts last chance.

Now that football is over we can solely concentrate on pro and college hoops, and counting down the days until pitchers and catchers report. Also, its Speed Week in Daytona. Can anyone stop Jimmie Johnson? And will someone please wreck Carl Edwards and Kyle Busch.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

It's Signing Day

Signing Day is finally here. The day that every college football fan has hope again. After months of watching 17 and 18-year old kids every move, athletes finally make their college choices official.

For months we've been hearing of commitments and decommitments of these players but with the way most of them treat them, commitment shouldn't be the word we use. Commitment means you're making a promise to someone or some place. The athletes are all over the place even after they have "committed" to an institution. While yes the system allows it and in some cases it may be warranted, we need to find a new word. Not sure what word we should use but I'm open to suggestions.

Also, I wouldn't get too caught up in rankings now. Yes its nice to say we have this many great players coming in but realize they haven't done anything yet. Take Arthur Brown from Miami. He came out as a five-star and one of the top linebackers in the country. He never really saw the field except in late game or special teams situations, and now has left school. A few years ago the Canes were gushing about him. Now he's a player looking for a school (Tennessee anyone?).

Further, some of the guys won't even be on the field until two or three years from now. Only the best of the best see significant playing time on really good teams. Anyway, enjoy the whole day and at the end we'll see who ended up where and get started on the 2011 class.

My Wish List for FSU:

1. Christian Jones - LB - Winter Park - Dad and brother played for the Noles
2. Christian Green - ATH - Tampa - Cousin of E.G. Green
3. Corey Lemonier - DE - Hialeah -
4. Calvin Smith - DT - Hialeah
5. Bjoern Warner - DT - Salisbury, CT - has a teammate that already committed.
6. Ego Ferguson - DE - Chatham, VA - would be nice but not so sure

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Took Long Enough

With the world of boxing still reeling from the "postponing" of what would have been one of the greatest fights ever, Bernard Hopkins and Roy Jones, Jr. have decided to have a rematch. This comes 17 years after their first fight, a unanimous decision won by Jones for the middleweight championship.

This is a fight that would have a lot more people interested if it happened about ten years ago when the fighters were still some of the best in the sport. Now both are over 40, Hopkins is 45 and Jones 41, and holding onto what's left of their boxing careers.

At one time Jones was considered the best pound-for-pound ever. Now he has lost his last fight by first round KO to Danny Green (who? not the UNC ballplayer) and his glass jaw has been exposed over and over.

Hopkins is still having a shred of success, but he hasn't beaten a top fighter in some time. I appreciate them "giving fans what they want," it just would have been better at the beginning of the decade and not the end. What are your thoughts on these two old guys finally fighting?

Monday, January 25, 2010

Quick Hits on Conference Championship Games

It was another great weekend for football and after five months we finally know the Super Bowl matchup. The Colts beat the Jets and the Saints beat the Vikings. Here are some quick thoughts that I have as both teams enjoy a bye week and the Pro Bowl approaches next week.

AFC Championship

-There has been a debate about Manning vs Brady for QB of the decade. I've been in the Manning camp for a while, and if he can win this Super Bowl I believe the debate ends.

-Rex Ryan, Darrelle Revis is great but he can't guard everyone.

-Did anyone know who Austin Collie and Pierre Garcon were? Everyone does now after they combined for 20 catches, 274 yards and two touchdowns.

-Count me as one who is impressed by Mark Sanchez. He has been continually labeled a game manager, but that hit he took on his second TD pass was a hard one and he still delivered the ball. Jets fans should be excited. They have a up-and-coming QB, a strong O-Line, a stud rookie RB and a great defense. Now what do they do with Braylon Edwards?

-Sorry Peyton, I counted you out when the Jets got the 11 point lead and again you made me look stupid. I thought that if the Jets could have scored a touchdown to make the score 21-6 instead of only getting a field goal, the Colts were done. Guess it didn't matter.

-Where was the #1 Jets defense? Indy hasn't run well all year and they get 101 yards on the ground in your biggest game of the year.

-I wonder when the Colts were losing how many times their leaders and fans thought, "We should have played the starters the entire game and finished off this team in Week 15."

-What's up with the kickers? Jay Feely missed two kicks (albeit long ones) and went 1-3 on the day.

NFC Championship

-Hopefully this is the last we have seen of Brett Favre. He showed a lot of toughness in playing the entire game and taking a beating, but I'm over him and all of the drama. Also, should Favre retire, does Brad Childress call former boss Andy Reid and inquire about Donovan McNabb?

-It's fitting that Favre's last pass would be an INT, running to his right and throwing back into the middle. That's something you learn not to do when you first come up as a QB and he still does what he wants. Three turnovers in your last game, that's about right for #4.

-Adrian Peterson had another great game (122 yards 3 TDs), but can someone teach the man to hold onto the ball?

-Way to bounce back Garrett Hartley after being suspended the first four games of the season. And what a class guy John Carney is after keeping the seat warm for Hartley, becoming the Saints kicking coach.

-Where was the normal Drew Brees? It looked to me that Sean Payton was worried about Brees getting hit and didn't do all of the things on offense the Saints normally do.

-Is it bad that I don't believe this was a great game? High drama? Yes. Six turnovers and penalties that either kept drives going or stalled them equals a sloppy game.

-Credit does go to the Saints for defense for battering Favre and causing some of the turnovers. However, I wouldn't be surprised if they're losing sleep the next two weeks thinking about Peyton Manning.

Pro Bowl

As many of you know, the Pro Bowl is being played at the site of the Super Bowl for the first time this season (Miami). It's also being played the week between the Conference Championship Games and the Super Bowl instead of after the Super Bowl. Now I tend to watch a lot of the game but not the whole thing. However, with everyone still in football mode, do you think that you'll watch more of the Pro Bowl or about the same as always?

Monday, January 18, 2010

Two Interesting Reads

I am a huge Sports Illustrated reader. I have been since the second grade and that includes my loyalty to SI.com. I was reading today and found two good articles and stories I have commented on in the past week. The first has changed my perception of new Tennessee coach Derek Dooley by Andy Staples.

The second is how Gaines Adams' enlarged heart could have gone unnoticed for so long by David Epstein.

Gaines Adams Dead at 26

I didn't plan on writing anything to day but after seeing this story I had to. Former Buc Gaines Adams is dead at 26. He died after going into cardiac arrest from an enlarged. heart. Its a condition that no one in his family even knew he had.

It amazes me that someone who plays in the show and is normally in top physical condition can have something like this sneak up on them. Also, how was this never found in a pre-season physical?

My heart goes out to the people who were close go Adams in the wake of this tragedy.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Derek Who?

Word on the street is that the University of Tennessee has hired Derek Dooley, the coach and athletic director at Louisiana Tech.

I understand that getting a "splash" hire would have been difficult and something needed to be done quickly due to recruiting, but I didn't think the Vols had to go this low on the totem pole.

Dooley is the son of Georgia legend Vince Dooley and comes off the Nick Saban coaching tree, having coached with Saban at LSU and also with the Miami Dolphins. In his three years at Tech he has compiled a 17-20 record.

Not the hire I would have expected and I'm sure the Vols know something I don't, but I'm not sold. The Vols have taken a definite step backwards. I'm sure people will say I'll be proven wrong and I hope I am. However, as of now, I think the Vols could have done better.

Who else do you think the Vols should have considered for the job? (Gruden is doing TV so not him and Muschamp of Texas turned the gig down.)

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Jimbo can do Wrong, USF Coach, and more Clippers bad Luck

As many of you know I'm an FSU Alum and avid Jimbo Fisher supporter. While I wasn't one of those who wanted to push Bobby out of the door, I'm alright with the move being made. I like how Jimbo has brought some new, young coaching talent to Tallahassee, and I really like some of the talent that has committed.

Now Jimbo as rubbed me the wrong way by doing two things. One isn't that big of a deal, and one really bothers me. The first, Jimbo wants to make the state of the art weight room more "football centric (fewer athletes from other sports using that room)."

There is no need for that. I believe that all coaches from all sports should support each other for the good of the athletic department.

Jimbo has also said that he wants to ease the non-conference schedule.

"We have a great non-conference game in Florida. I don't mind playing a tough non-conference game, but I think you're crazy, in my opinion, to go out and play three of them. I think it doesn't enhance you. And here's the other thing: we look at it as fans and say 'Well we should play everybody.' Okay, well how about paying bills? When you go three [non-conference games], you're going back to six home games a year. When you do it the other way, you're guaranteeing seven and when they're on the home schedule you're guaranteeing eight, because you get four conference at home and sometimes four non-conference. There's bills to pay."

I understand there are bills to pay but I love traveling to see a non-conference opponent we normally don't get to, and I like the idea of playing anyone anytime. I understand it was a different time, but that is how Bobby Bowden made his name. He played anyone, anywhere. I'm sure that Jimbo and the athletic director have their reasons, but playing good teams is something that I love doing. However, I have said it before and I'll say it again, in Jimbo I trust.

In other news, Mark Whipple, the offensive coordinator of the Miami Hurricanes, keeps coming up for the USF coaching job. It would be a great hire for the Bulls if they could pull it off.

Lastly, the Clippers bad luck continues. They had an easy choice for the number one pick in the draft with Blake Griffin. But he gets hurt to end the preseason and now we find out he is out for the season. Ouch.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Football is a Business

Dear Everyone who is questioning Lane Kiffin's loyalty,

FOOTBALL IS A BUSINESS! If Tennessee would have fired Kiffin after one season would anyone be outraged? Would anyone question their loyalty? Football is about winning and finding the position that fits you. If Lane feels better at SC then take the job.

Anyone of us would leave a job after one year if a better one opened up. What makes coaches any different?

Yes you can feel sorry for the players (not the other students or alumni). The players bought in and are now in the cold again. And the recruits are leaving in droves. I have seen five that have decommitted immediately.

But as far as anyone or anything else, he made a decision that is best for him and his family. Anyone of us would do exactly the same. As soon as people learn that football is a business, the better of we will be as sports fans.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Lane Kiffin to USC

Lane Kiffin is done making enemies in the SEC and has reportedly moved on to SC. This is a great hire for SC. Kiffin has shown his chops as both a recruiter and head coach. He also has ties to SC as he was their offensive coordinator before taking the Oakland job. Also, if he takes the Vols staff with him, he is bringing a solid crew. I think SC couldn't have made a better hire. It also means we get another press conference with Lane's wife.

The coaching carousel continues to turn and now it comes to be seen what the Vols recruits will do as well as who they will hire as coach. I ask you, what do you think of SC hiring Lane Kiffin?

Tell Us Something We Don't Know

Mark McGwire finally admitted he used steroids. That's something we already knew. He went from skinny rookie to a massive behemoth that broke Roger Maris' home run record. Like I said initially, no one is surprised.
I give McGwire small amount of credit. He did call the Maris family and apologize, and he finally admitted he was wrong. Apparently, he wanted to come clean at the Congressional Hearings but was told by his lawyer not to do so since they weren't granted immunity.
What I don't understand is Tony LaRussa. He killed Jose Canseco for accusing people and protected McGwire. Now that McGwire has come out with this, he acts like there was no way he could have known. He talks about the weight program in Oakland and that's how he thought McGwire bulked up. Just tuck tail now LaRussa and admit you blew it. You tried to hide it for your slugger and he finally came clean. The least you can do is the same.
I know many of us have the feeling that we're more surprised by those who haven't used drugs than by those who have. I have two questions: who would surprise you the most if you found out they used steroids? And how should MLB denote that Maris' record is the clean record?

Monday, January 11, 2010

Pete Carroll and SC

Pete Carroll chastised Mark Sanchez for leaving SC early and saying he wasn't ready for the Show. Sanchez looked pretty good on Saturday and managed the game. I think the reason Carroll really wanted Sanchez to stay was to help Carroll and not Sanchez. Carroll knew his quarterbacks weren't ready and knew Sanchez would be the difference in winning the Pac-10 again.

Now Carroll is jumping ship on SC just as the NCAA seems to be closing in. I don't know if sanctions will ever come down, but Carroll leaving surprises me. 1) He has built a powerhouse in one of the U.S. most fertile recruiting territories. 2) His style didn't work in the show twice before but seemed a perfect fit for college.

He must know something everyone else doesn't. He is from the Bill Parcells school so he is going to have total control, meaning he will make all of the personnel decisions as well. Only time will tell if his latest NFL experience will succeed, and if he got out of SC when the getting was good. Now I want to know, who does SC get as their next coach? Jack Del Rio is an alum and may be out in Jacksonville, and the same goes for Jeff Fisher in Tennessee. Who do you think will be the next coach on the SC sideline?

NFL Playoffs

Cowboys vs Eagles - As much as it pains me to say it, Dallas is just better than the Eagles this season. They beat them handily three times this season and accounted for half of the Philly losses. Now the question is has Donovan played his last game in Philly? And will Andy Reid finally be run out of town? Philly fans shouldn't jump to getting rid of someone who has had that much sustained success, but they also haven't won a Super Bowl. I say keep him, but other Philly fans don't believe in logic either.

Packers vs Cardinals - Fitting that an offensive show is ended by a defensive TD in overtime. I don't know how Arizona let Green Bay back in the game. The onside kick was a great call by McCarthy. Aaron Rodgers had another amazing game and is the second best QB in the NFC. The Cardinals have to play better defense next weekend or Brees and company will pick them apart.

Ravens vs Pats - No team can get down 21 points and expect to come back. Not even New England. The Ravens jumped on them early and never let them up. There were way too many turnovers. I will say I was impressed with Ravens running attack. I wasn't impressed with Joe Flacco's 34 passing yards. Is this the end of the Patriots run? They didn't make the playoffs last year and lost their first home playoff game under Belichick, I think we can say its over.

Jets vs Bengals - Keep talking trash Rex Ryan. I love it and it gives everybody someone to hate in the playoffs. They do have the best defense and best rushing attack, but I don't think they can beat San Diego. I am openly rooting for them, if only to hear Rex keep talking.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Jim Leavitt Out at USF

Jim Leavitt is out at USF. The only coach the school has ever known has been fired for hitting a walk-on player in the face. This is bad timing with recruiting winding down. I have no idea where USF is going to look for a coach but this is a huge story. Leavitt was rumored to be considered for the Alabama job before Saban came on and now he is out as the only coach USF has ever had.

Quick Hitters from the BCS Championship Game

After watching the BCS Championship Game last night I had a lot on my mind. I had no team to root for so my interest was on finally getting a pick right. And for anyone that thinks they can get one over on the odds makers in Vegas, I finished exactly 12-12 picking against the spread for the bowl games. I was only one game better at 13-11 on picking winners.

-Bama won but the game is different if McCoy plays. It had to hurt to finally get to this point and get injured on the fifth play of the game.

- Texas fans were excited about Garrett Gilbert playing for the Horns in 2010, just not in January. Gilbert was serviceable in this game. He did have five turnovers but he made the game interesting in the fourth quarter with two touchdown passes. He won't forget how bad losing in this game felt. With the recruiting that Mack Brown normally does, Gilbert will have Texas bathing in confetti before he leaves Austin.

- Mark Ingram had a great game (116 yards 2 TDs) for the Tide but last night further proved why he shouldn't have won the Heisman. Trent Richardson had an equally impressive game (109 yards 2 TDs). Both players come back next season as well.

- Kirk Herbstreit jinxed the Texas O-Line. Just before Gilbert fumbled on a sack, Herbstreit said the maligned Texas offensive line had not given up a sack. He did apologize for the curse on Sportscenter last night.

- Texas, you have to get touchdowns when you get that close to the goal line, and when you get two quick turnovers to start the game. The score should have been 14-0, or at least 10-0 early in the first quarter. Instead it was 6-0 and the Tide reeled off 24 straight.

- Marcell Dareus should be the player of the game for Alabama. He knocked McCoy out of the game and then had the interception return at the end of the first half to put Alabama up 24-6.

- Texas WRs: you have to make plays for your quarterback, especially a freshman who has that deer in the headlights look. Early when Gilbert came in, Jordan Shipley and company couldn't make a big play and even struggled with some of the routine plays. This made life even more difficult on Gilbert.

- Greg McElroy is alright as a QB, but he is still the Achilles heel of this football team. Julio Jones only had one catch last night and McElroy only threw for 58 yards. By struggling at QB, he takes away one of Bama's best weapons on his own.

- Rolando McClain is going to make a lot of money playing on Sundays. He's big (6'4" 258), fast, and smart. He was the best player on the field a lot of times last night.

- Why do I feel like Terrence Cody is going to be a bust in the NFL? He's huge and clogs running lanes, but he will never be a three down player. He reminds me of Shaun Rogers of the Browns. Can be good when he wants to but can he dominate when he gets tired?

That's all I have for now but let me know what you saw and what you think about the BCS Championship.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Pac-Man vs Pretty Boy

After months of lobbying and trash talking, and even setting a date, the fight of the century is off the table. Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather, Jr. are not going to be fighting in Vegas on March 13.

The first snag in negotiations was over loot, which isn't a surprise considering Mayweather. Then the site of the fight was in negotiations after Jerry Jones wanted the fight in Dallas but that didn't work out and Vegas was determined for the fight.

The latest problem had to do with drug testing. While both agreed to drug testing, Mayweather wanted more stringent Olympic style testing. His camp has said for months they believe Pacquiao uses performance enhancing drugs and want to ensure a fair fight. Pacquiao doesn't want this kind of testing because he feels it takes away energy.

With neither side able to agree on testing, the fight is now off. Pacquiao has even sued the Mayweather camp for defamation over the PED accusation. And his promoter Bob Arum, who Mayweather used to work with, says Mayweather is coming up with stuff to avoid the fight.

I think both sides need to figure this out. This is a fight fans would love to see. While many say Mayweather is avoiding the fight, I think Pacquiao is just as much to blame. Do the blood testing and fight. No matter how mad he is over the location or the drug testing, he can do something that most people can't do when their job pisses them off; HE CAN PUNCH THE GUY IN THE FACE! So, Floyd, quit "dodging what will be a great fight and Manny get your panties out of a bunch if you have nothing to hide. How would you get these two in a ring together?

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

FSU Vacates Wins

I'm going to admit that I'm biased about this but I think the NCAA was dead wrong to make FSU vacate wins for their academic cheating scandal. All of the athletes that were involved were punished, but its still wrong to make the school vacate the wins. FSU self reported the problems and imposed its own restrictions that included the suspension of athletes and reduction of scholarships.

Now FSU was wrong to let it happen and to spent a lot of time and money trying to get Coach Bowden his wins back, but the NCAA dropped the ball on this one. This week USC self reported violations that a booster funneled money($200,000) from an agent to guard O.J. Mayo. They also proposed restrictions on themselves and the NCAA is cool with it.

SC is still "investigating" over their football players Reggie Bush and Joe McKnight receiving improper benefits.

Yes what FSU did was wrong, but they self reported and had self imposed restrictions and the wins shouldn't be vacated. USC Football is pointing and laughing at the NCAA.

Last Three Picks

So picking games is not my forte. While I didn't pick the Fiesta Bowl last night due to a long day at the office, I am going to take the loss because I'm sure I would have picked TCU. Here is what I think of the last three games:

Orange Bowl - Iowa vs Georgia Tech (-5 1/2) - Tech's triple option offense gives Iowa fits. I don't care how many weeks they had to prepare, no scout team can simulate Tech's speed and precision running it. Tech also covers.

GMAC Bowl - Central Michigan (-2 1/2) vs Troy - Central Michigan wins and covers. If you need a reason to watch, its CM quarterback Dan Lefevour. He has better numbers than Tebow and leads his team to victory.

Championship Game - Texas vs Alabama (-4) - I'm openly rooting for Texas but I think Alabama wins but doesn't cover. Texas hasn't shown the ability to put up points against a good defense and Alabama has the best in the land.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Rest of the Picks

International Bowl - USF (-6 1/2) vs No. Illinois - USF wins and covers

Papa Johns Bowl - UConn vs South Carolina (-3 1/2) - South Carolina wins a close one and doesn't cover

Cotton Bowl - Ole Miss (-3) vs Oklahoma State - Dexter McCluster goes off for the Rebels and they win and cover

Liberty Bowl - Arkansas (-7 1/2) vs East Carolina - Ryan Mallet has a big game for the Razorbacks and they win and cover

Alamo Bowl - Texas Tech (-7 1/2) vs Michigan State - The Red Raiders lost their coach while the Spartans have a bunch of players suspended. The game is sloppy. The Red Raiders win but don't cover.