Hello and welcome to another Wednesday of deep thoughts. If you ever want to know the best time to visit Austin, Texas…my stock answer is usually October. Although the weather is usually great this time of year, this year…it has been perfect. Although the weather may be perfect, life has been anything but. A few weeks ago, my middle daughter was T boned while driving to class. The girl that hit my daughter was driving her boyfriend’s brand new Mercedes…yeah, I know. I got that phone call and advised my daughter to immediately call the police. I learned my lesson with the last accident I was involved in. Although police will tell you not to call them when the accident is minor, I have found that having a police report is a big deal. In the accident I was involved in, the insurance company had a difficult time contacting their customer. It took a voice message from me that and a mention about hiring an attorney before the call was made. The insurance company acted like I was out of luck if the other driver refused to acknowledge the wreck. Since that time…I call the police and get a police report. Thankfully, my daughter got that police report as once again…the other party refused to return phone calls regarding the accident. Finally we got this taken care of, but what a pain. Of course, then our refrigerator suddenly stopped working. I had a guy come out last week and it turns out that the compressor has gone out. Say what? I was stunned when he said it was $1000 to replace the compressor. It was a nice fridge…but not that nice. The kicker was the following day my computer crashed. I was reminded of MartinLawrence’s line from “Blue Streak”...”I can’t believe so much bad shit can happen on such a beautiful day.” I am sorry that I have not been around much the past few days, but with limited internet access, it really has been difficult. But as they say, life goes on…and so does the world of sports.
Madison Bumgarner is just a country boy, but he has a penchant for pitching well in the playoffs.
If Tuesday night is any indication, the Giants are up to the task of slowing down the runaway Royals. I did not get to watch the entire game, but the few innings I saw were enough to see that the only real big game pitcher in this series is Madison Bumgarner. As talented as the Royals are…they simply do not have an arm to match up with Bumgarner. To be honest, there may not be a better playoff pitcher in baseball than Madison Bumgarner. The Giants have been on this big stage before and it showed. Game 2 Wednesday night could prove to be huge for the Royal's WS chances. If they head to San Francisco down 0-2, it could be a short series. My hunch is that the Royal bats return today and that we do have that battle that everyone expected.
Congratulations to Peyton Manning on establishing a new all- time TD record. There are some records that stand out from others and this is certainly one of the biggies. The Broncos look to my eyes to be the best team in football and certainly on the fast track to return to the Super Bowl. If there if there is an AFC team capable of derailing the Broncos, it is San Diego. After many Thursday night stinkers early in the season, the NFL must be thankful that the schedule has provided a few good games. I still am completely against the NFL on Thursday, but I will certainly be tuned in to watch this week. My money is on the Broncos, but I suspect that the Chargers make it more interesting than the 49ers did in last week’s Denver blow out.
If ever there was a team that needs a bye week, it is the 49ers. They are beat up and were just no match for Denver. But…I have a sneaking suspicion that San Francisco will regroup and find a way to make the playoffs. But, unless their linebackers can get healthy…I don’t think they would beat Dallas in a rematch. Of course…we are not even to the halfway point in the season and much can change in a couple of months. Sort of like the talk about the season’s MVP…I listened to several talking heads blabbing on about Demarco Murray and how he should be the MVP this season. While it is entirely too early to have this discussion, I must admit that Murray would be in the conversation at this point. There is no question that Dallas would not be 6 and 1 without Murray’s legs. If both teams continue playing as they have, it will be an interesting choice between Peyton Manning and Demarco Murray. But, there is much football to be played and who knows…maybe someone like Andrew Luck and his Colts could spoil the party. Then again, that team in Green Bay just might have something to say as well.
Does he have a chance to catch Eric Dickerson's record?
I have to take a moment to say congrats to Colt McCoy for leading the Redskins to a comeback win last week against the Titans. I have always felt that McCoy has been overlooked for his talent and charisma as a leader. Even George Patton could not have led Colt's Browns teams to victory. The lack of talent and leadership and the funk surrounding that organization made winning a tough task for anyone...much less a rookie QB. To Colt's credit he has shown perserverance and intestinal fortitude to continue competing. He has worked hard and been a good teammate...and was ready when called upon last Sunday. I will be in a tough spot next Sunday as I will be pulling hard for Colt to play well, but not well enough for the Skins to win. I don't know what the future holds for Colt McCoy, but I do know that he has the heart of a champion. Jay Gruden has said that McCoy has the intangibles to be an NFL QB. In watching the NFL show about Doug Flutie, I see that these two guys have much in common. The NFL is so often guilty of sterotyping players and ignoring winning traits. Hopefully, Colt McCoy will be given the opportunity to succeed in Washington as he is one of the good guys.
Much has been made about the Texas Aggies leaving the Big 12 and heading to the SEC. I did not agree with the move and felt that the Aggies would have a difficult time competing in the SEC. Johnny Football arrived in College Station and the Aggies managed to not only compete, but win some very big games. But, despite the hype around Manziel and the Aggies, there was always the troubling aspect of defense in Aggieland. In one sense, the Aggies remind me of the Longhorns after Colt McCoy. Colt’s talent hid the lack of a running game, but once he departed, the flaws in that Texas team was truly revealed. Texas A&M has talent, the experts have told us that they do. But unless you can play defense and have offensive balance, it is very difficult to compete each year at the highest level. I know that it is tough to give Nick Saban credit, but damn it the man can coach. Alabama is a great example of a team that reloads each year…despite what an ex QB may have to say. The Aggies got the big stage that they wanted, but they may find that winning each season to be a tougher task than many have anticipated. Texas is quickly improving and as Texas stock rises, it can only be more difficult to attract the best talent to College Station. Playing in the SEC is great, but I have a feeling that the Aggie fans will quickly grow tired of being in the SEC and watching games like last Saturday. I ask my Aggie friends...is it worth the additional revenue and being out of the Longhorn shadow to occaisonally get a 59 to 0 butt whooping? I heard it mentioned this week that Texas and the Aggies could possibly meet in a bowl like the Texas bowl. Now that would be interestnig....think it would be well attended? Oh hell yeah...
That’s all I have today, but I will leave you with a bit of Jack Handey…
I wish outer space guys would conquer the Earth and make people their pets, because I'd like to have one of those little beds with my name on it.
I think a good product would be "Baby Duck Hat". It's a fake baby duck, which you strap on top of your head. Then you go swimming underwater until you find a mommy duck and her babies, and you join them. Then, all of a sudden, you stand up out of the water and roar like Godzilla. Man, those ducks really take off! Also, Baby Duck Hat is good for parties.
Thanks for stopping by and feel free to leave a few deep thoughts of your own.
Welcome to Wednesday, Gabbers. Baseball is set for it’s last series. The Royals take on the Giants after both teams survived the longest road ever taken by two teams. This is the second time in MLB history that both wild card teams have made it through, but it’s the first time that these wild card teams have made it through the one game playoff. I have to go with the Royals, but I have some worries.
The Series is starting tonight, while the Giants wrapped up their series 5 days ago. The Royals punched their ticket 6 days ago. Can the Royals maintain their hot streak with that long of a break? Honestly, we are left to ask why. Why did the MLB decide to wait so long? I can see not wanting to go up against NFL games, but I think you could take the weak Steelers-Texans Monday night match-up. I think they could have started Friday. If you want to speed the game up, don’t make fans wait so damn long for the biggest series of the year.
One lucky fan, however, doesn’t have to wait nor does he have to watch the series from home. Frank Burke, a lifelong Giants fan, was lucky enough to catch Travis Ishikawa’s home run ball. You know, the one that sent the Giants to the Series? Well, Mr. Burke had the souvenir of souvenirs in his hands, but he didn’t keep it. Mr. Burke brought the ball down to Ishikawa. Ishikawa was grateful enough to give Burke a handshake and an autographed bat.
Giants officials asked Burke what he would like for his kindness. Burke joked about Word Series tickets, but was told it was unlikely. They must have changed their minds. Burke now has 4 tickets to game 3 in San Francisco. Burke, as if he wasn’t cool enough here, has said he’s taking his friend who is battling cancer. This guy might get fan of the year.
In other news, my wife is currently second in her fantasy league. I’ve never been close to winning any fantasy league, but the wife is on fire. She’s got Manning at QB, but the rest of her team seemed pretty lackluster. Still, she’s in second. Next time I do fantasy, she gets to run my draft.
The worst of baseball met the most mediocre of football. A-Roid decided to take in a Cowboys game recently. It being A-Roid, the Cowboys let him on the field. A-Roid was loitering by the tunnels when the team came out and almost got run over by Tony Romo. Now if Romo had done ran A-Roid down, I would not question his abilities any more. He would have made his case to me. Come Tony, run this guy down.
Well, that’s all for me. Thanks as always for stopping in. Enjoy the series and best of luck to your team, unless it’s the Giants. Sorry, you guys got one fairly recently. Share the titles.
Hello ladies and gents, and welcome to Tuesday here at YouGabSports! Since BOB just posted yesterday and this would be his normal spot, I figured I’d stop in and throw something new up here for the day… so, without further adieu, let’s get on with it.
Great week for NFL football… a huge night for one of the game’s greatest, as Peyton Manning, in the words of the great BOB, went all Iron Sheik on the 49ers and humbled them up. It was like he had that defense in the camel clutch from the opening kickoff! Three touchdown passes away from Brett Favre’s seven year old mark of 508, Manning proceeded to throw four touchdown passes on the night and add a little cushion to his new NFL standard. You can argue that Peyton might not be the best of all time in terms of winning championships, or getting it done in the postseason, but when you look at regular season numbers, it’s hard to put anybody else above him. Of course, adding another Super Bowl win or two to the resume before he retires would help him in the other department, too. Only time will tell where he ends up in the pantheon of all-time passers, but regardless, he’s a top five quarterback at this point even without another ring. Congratulations to Peyton on his accomplishment, but I’m sure he’d trade every one of his 510 TD passes for another ring or two.
Obviously, the Broncos won the ballgame… and won it big. The 49ers are now 4-3, but it looks like they will get Aldon Smith back sooner than expected. His nine game ban is likely to be reduced by a game or two due to “good behavior”… good news for a team that is struggling to pressure the passer. But they’re still weak against the run with both Patrick Willis and Navarro Bowman out. To be honest, I’m surprised at how well they’ve held up with what is basically a Pro Bowl roster of linebackers out of their lineup!
There is still hope for the 49ers, thanks to the struggles of the Seattle Seahawks over the past two weeks. The St.Louis Rams shocked the world by taking them down 28-26 with the help of some great special teams play. Nothing better than seeing Dick Sherman after a loss… because he shuts the hell up!
There was more action outside the stadium, but somehow it missed most of the major media outlets. A group of “Ferguson protestors” stood outside the Edward Jones Dome, harassing, physically assaulting, spitting on and shouting racial slurs at white folks on their way out of the game Sunday afternoon. Yet, somehow, it missed all the major networks. If there were a gang of white folks outside a stadium doing the same to every black person as they walked out, don’t you think we would have heard a bit more about it nationally? When does the double standard stop, people?
Meanwhile Arizona (you know, the team that is WINNING the best division in football) beat the Raiders. Not much of an accomplishment, but with the Seattle loss they opened up a two game division lead.
The Steelers bounced back from a loss to Cleveland last week with a 30-23 win over the Texans on Monday night. The Texans dominated the first 27 minutes of the first half, but they seem to have forgotten that a half of NFL football is actually 30 minutes long! The Steelers went on a scoring binge in the final three minutes of the half, and took the lead for good on a trick play from Antonio Brown, who threw a 3 yard TD pass off an end around to Lance Moore to go up 17-13. The Steelers weren’t done there… after recovering an Arian Foster fumble on the shadow of the goal line, Big Ben found Le’Veon Bell for a 2 yard TD pass to close the half with a 24-13 lead.
The Browns used the momentum from their rare win over Pittsburgh last week to… well, shit the bed against the Jaguars, giving the Jags their first win of the season. The 2008 Lions are a little bit closer to popping that champagne, with just Oakland remaining on the winless side of things in 2014. Don’t worry Jon Kitna and Rod Marinelli… your spot in history seems safe still!
The Detroit Lions snatched victory from the jaws of defeat on Sunday… something they normally do in reverse… by scoring two TD’s in the final 3:38 to top the New Orleans Saints, 24-23. There is a much different feel to this team. The defense is dominant, special teams is solid (aside from the kicking issues, which will likely be shored up once Prater settles in), and the offense isn’t committing their usual brand of poorly timed turnovers and moronic penalties. I’m not saying they’re Super Bowl bound by any means… but winning two in a row without Megatron on the field bodes pretty well for when this guy is back and healthy!
Lucky for me… I got to miss this epic Lions comeback. About halfway through the game, the boy started having pain in his ear, so the wife decided to rush him to urgent care and get it checked out. This was after the previous night’s trip to urgent care because he caught pink eye at school the freaking day before. So, needless to say, I’ll be hanging out at home with him over the next few days until the pink eye and ear infection clear up. Made for one hell of an eventful weekend, for sure.
Next up for the Lions, a trip to London, England to face the Atlanta Falcons… who lost 29-7 to the Ravens last week. The Falcons continue to struggle running the football, and that shouldn’t improve much for them going up against the #1 ranked run defense in the league (that’s right, I said that about the Lions… and it’s week 8!) this week. Not sure how the extra travel will affect anything, but this is a game the Lions SHOULD win… and with a win they’ll go into the bye week with a 6-2 record. Sorry to brag here, folks, but it’s been a long time since I’ve had a damn thing to brag about when it comes to the Leos!
The Packers continued their winning ways, dominating the Panthers at Lambeau Field behind another near-flawless performance out of Aaron Rodgers. Rodgers now has 18 TD passes to one interception on the season.
The Dallas Cowboys continued their winning ways, topping the Giants in Jerryworld 31-21. Demarco Murray broke an NFL record held by Jim Brown by picking up his 7th consecutive 100 yard rushing day to open a season. Tony Romo continued his stellar play, throwing for three TD’s and just one pick in the win.
The Chiefs made Phillip Rivers look somewhat human this week, holding him to just 205 passing yards and forcing just his third interception of the season.
Over on the college front, how do you end such a great fucking game with such an iffy call? Was it a penalty… technically, yes. But is that the kind of call you want to end a game of the year candidate? Hell no! The Noles were running the same “pick play” all night long… and the week before against Syracuse… with zero flags thrown their way. I’m calling bullshit… the Irish got screwed. The Noles had better hope Jameis keeps his nose clean and stays in their lineup the rest of the year, because they are a very beatable team even with Winston under center. When they hit the playoffs, I normally don’t root for an SEC team, but I will be hoping to see them get blown out of the water by whichever of the Alabama/Auburn/Mississippi State/Ole Miss group comes their way.
As for Jimbo Fisher… what a fucking scumbag. Mugging for the cameras and pretending as if Winston has redeemed himself, and acting like he’s “like a son to you”. Nothing worse than a disingenuous person, especially when it’s a disingenuous millionaire football coach exploiting a bunch of kids to continue making that much money.
Staying in the top five, Baylor shit the bed in Morgantown, as West Virginia pulled the upset special on the #4 Bears thanks to a 14-0 4th quarter run. This Clint Trickett kid… he’s got some freaking moxy!
TCU recovered nicely from their last minute loss to Baylor last week with a 33 point beatdown of the the #15 Oklahoma State Cowboys. That’ll get you back in the conversation.
As for the SEC… four teams in the top five? I know that will change quite a few times between now and the end of the season, but what in the hell? At least they all play each other, and only one of them should be standing once we’re ready for the first NCAA football playoff. At least I hope to holy hell there is only one SEC team of the four that qualify!
Last week I had Alabama on upset alert against Texas A&M… evidently I was mistaken… because the Tide rolled the Aggies hard to the tune of a 59-0 win. Such an ugly game it was unwatchable.
Game one of the World Series is coming up tonight! James Shields against NLCS MVP Madison Bumgarner. Should be a great atmosphere in Kansas City tonight, they’ve been waiting a long time for this! As I’ve said before, I don’t have a beef with either side winning, but I’ll be rooting a little harder for the Royals.
That’s all I’ve got for today folks. Thanks as always for reading and for anything you leave on the way out.
Greetings from the Hoodwood, where fall keeps creeping in ever so slowly and the natives are still not ready for it
College Football: The really big game that lived up to the hype.
When I saw that Notre Dame and Florida State were slated to play one another, I hoped that both teams would be undefeated because I knew that the hype would be over the top. I knew that Notre Dame would play up the poor pitiful underdog role to the hilt. I knew the lisping criminal Lou Holtz would wax poetic about how he knew that the Irish would somehow pull a miracle victory out. The added fuel of the increasingly controversial Jameis Winston for Florida State made this an intoxicating mix. Add the primetime stage of the nationally televised forum and you had an intoxicating mix. Every now and then you have a game that lives up to the hype, Notre Dame-Florida State in 1993 was a prime example, as was Ohio State-Michigan in 2006. When you have two teams of the first rank, two legendary programs that play the highest caliber of the sport. In any case, better than 82,000 fans jammed into Doak Campbell Stadium for the biggest regular season game in years. The game lived up to the hype. Irish QB Everett Golson and Winston played at a top notch level. Both defenses made key plays and the offenses seemed to play at a championship level. A back and forth game went down to the last minutes of the game where the Noles took a 31-27 lead on a Karlos Williams run. But the Irish came charging back down the field and converted two fourth downs in the drive, the Irish got to the Noles 2 and Golson threw a quick out to Korey Robinson (son of basketball hall of famer David) in the end zone and the Irish seemed to have pulled out an improbable, yet thrilling win. But not so fast there, there was late flag. THe Irish were flagged for offensive pass interference and call so controversial that Irish coach Brian Kelly was irate and was opening cursing at the referees. The call of course stood and backed to the 18 yard line, a desperate pass was picked off and the Noles survived. But the whining by the Irish and their fans continued to beef that they were robbed. I can almost guarantee that had that call would not have been made in South Bend. Not if the refs had valued their lives. But the call was correct and the Noles survived and remain unbeaten. But unlike other years one loss might not doom the Irish to bowl irreavency. THe Irish lost a close game on the road, that might get them more props than the victorious Noles who now face more and more questions about the tight win and the validity of their top five ranking. I myself likened the game to the ’71 Ali-Frazier fight, there was no real loser Both foes were made better by the game.
Have you ever seen a kicker return his own kick for a touchdown?
William Will of Dayton makes it happen, thats being Johnny on the Spot.
To one of my own sadly University of Cincinnati backup QB Jared Evans who was arrested for assault only a few hours after the football team returned from a 41-3 thrashing of SMU. Who gets back from another city and gets into a fight. Evans shamed the university and the football team in a way that a loss never could. Shame on you.
This penalty took the potential winning points off the board for the Irish.
Before I begin, I hope you'll excuse me for mentioning that my blog has had a really good day in views. I did a post about the LSU/Ole Miss rivalry about four years ago, and it's gotten about 1000 views in the last week, most of them today.
1 Florida St. 1
2 Ole Miss 3
3 Miss. St. 2
4 Alabama 7
5 Auburn 4
6 Oregon 9
7 Marshall 10
8 Notre Dame 5
9 Georgia 11
10 Arizona 8
11 Minnesota 15
12 UCLA 18
13 Mich. St. 13
14 TCU 19
15 Nebraska 17
16 LSU 20
17 Colo. St. 21
18 Ohio St. –
19 Kansas St. –
20 Baylor 6
21 USC 16
22 Oklahoma 12
23 Clemson –
24 Arizona St. –
25 Duke 23
Out of rankings: (14) Ga. Tech, (22) Kentucky, (24) Okie St., (25) TX A&M
I’ve updated the LSU/Kentucky rivalry blog if you haven’t seen it. I’ve been adding basic information to these and mentioning more in-depth observations in other blogs. Games that aren’t close will get less mention in the narrative. I also had a bit of fun at TigerDroppings.
Headache at the Top
I literally gave myself a headache thinking about what to do and the future possibilities.
I know I indicated that last week might be the last time I would alter the order of the first few teams for my rankings here, but unforeseen circumstances arose to change that. Tennessee is not a good team, but Ole Miss gained enough points last week to pass up Mississippi St. I was thinking Florida St. or Notre Dame (had they won) would be more likely challengers for #1, so I just didn’t think about this possibility.
I said last week I don’t think Kentucky is a good enough team to beat Mississippi St. and in light of yesterday’s game, I even more strongly don’t think they are. I particularly don’t think the Bulldogs would lose such a game after a bye week. Florida St. has a bye next week, so there would have been less reason to keep Florida St. in the top spot had Mississippi St. topped my computer rankings. Also, if Florida St. had lost and I had to make a change anyway, that would have made it even easier.
I’m not expecting LSU to beat Ole Miss, but I think there is a sufficiently large enough chance of a loss to put off making Ole Miss #1 until next week. The flip side is I think that’s the kind of challenge that can substantiate a #1 ranking. I simply don’t think the Rebels have had that kind of challenge yet. Alabama is a better team than LSU right now, possibly by a considerable margin, but home field can make a big difference. (Ole Miss beat Alabama in Oxford if you don’t follow what I’m saying.)
LSU had a better record and seemed to be the better team on paper when they went on the road to play Ole Miss last season. Sometimes rivalry games like this go the other way than people would expect. A possibly more fitting example: 2008 is arguably the worst LSU season since 1999, and the Tigers took Alabama, who was undefeated and ranked #1, to overtime when they played the Tide at home.
Right now, Ole Miss has only played two SEC opponents that do not reside in the state of Tennessee, and as I mentioned, one of them was at home. The Rebels have not won a true road game outside of the SEC (and I they had a degree of home-field advantage against Boise St. in Atlanta). The only reason they’re #1 in my system right now is they’ve had one fewer bye week than their in-state rivals. Also, Alabama is the only team I have in the top 25 right now that they beat. That’s not enough for me.
Why not make Mississippi St. #1 anyway? For one thing, I’m having to depart from the computer rankings anyway. The only reason to move Florida St. down would have been to just take all subjectivity and deference out of it. Why not keep a team who just beat another unbeaten team there for now? Florida St. also has by far the longest unbeaten streak at the moment.
Another reason is I don’t like to make a change one week after another change without both teams losing. If Ole Miss does win next week, then it would have been a new #1 three weeks in a row. That’s the kind of thing that I’m trying to avoid. Also, Florida St. was not a new #1 for this season (and certainly not forever). That’s a higher standard for me, so waiting until they reclaim #1 in the computers seems reasonable.
Mississippi St. will not have a big-points week until November 15 at the soonest (Alabama), so it’s possible someone else would be #1 if Ole Miss loses before that week anyway.
Anyway, expect #1 next week to be from Mississippi (unless both Mississippi St. and Ole Miss lose), and expect that team to also be #1 here. I think it will be good to fully endorse my computer ratings at the same time that the playoff committee has to reveal their opinion for the first time. Outside of the top 3, the rest of the top 25 is completely unaltered from the order of highest points in my computer ratings.
The Rest of the Top 25
Marshall keeps moving up, but keep in mind that unlike in the polls, they can easily get passed up as the season goes on even if they stay undefeated. The problem is when teams have a chance to pass them up, those teams tend to lose (or in the case of Arizona they have bye weeks).
It may understandably seem a bit strange that TCU is behind Minnesota. The Horned Frogs have had two bye weeks, which doesn’t help. Also, for obvious reasons, Baylor is a more harmful loss to TCU than TCU is a harmful loss to Minnesota.
You might not take Colorado St. seriously, but for some reason the polls take USC seriously despite their loss to Boston College. Colorado St. beat Boston College and has only lost one game, to Boise St. (who is just outside of the top 25).
I don’t understand why the polls love Oklahoma so much. Any other team that just had its second loss of the season (with no impressive wins) would be lucky to be in the top 25 at all. I would understand doing that for Alabama maybe, but not for a team that hasn’t won a national championship in 14 years.
Kansas St., the second team to beat the Sooners, makes its first appearance in my top 25 since the end of the 2012 season.
Virginia isn’t a bad team, so it might be nice if Duke got more credit for beating them, but the Cavaliers’ record needs to improve for the win to count for more.