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Sunday Musings #164
Category: User Showcase
Tags: NFL NBA FantasyFootball NewYorkMets NewEnglandPatriots BostonCollegeWomensBasketball WNBA BostonRedSox HighSchoolSports BaltimoreRavens

While still stuck without my own personal computer... (So yes, my "up to date-ness" ends on Saturday morning before this week's college football games kick off.)


Don't forget that you can follow me on Twitter - @TheOneTrueJay


NFL

New England Patriots - I watched most of the Patriots game last Sunday. But with the team up 17-7, I fell asleep. And that's when the Dolphins decided to wake up. Despite missing 3 of their starting linebackers, the defense just killed the New England offense after going down by that 10 point margin.

I woke up when it was 20-20 and wished I was still asleep as the Dolphins went on to win 33-20 and hand the Patriots their first opening day loss in 11 years.

My buddy Brian (a big Dolphins fan) had to be ecstatic watching the defense manhandle the Patriots offensive line. The Pats managed just 89 rushing yards and sacked Tom Brady four times.

Brady threw for 249 years and a TD, but after going up 17-7, it seems he was on the run for the rest of the game.

After all the preseason talk of how different the defense looked and played, it was more of the same because the defensive line couldn't stuff any holes and the Dolphins run game took advantage with 191 rushing yards. Knowshon Moreno was practically unstoppable with 134 of those yards.

This can't be what Bill Belichick planned for, but this game showed that the Patriots aren't quite ready for primetime yet. It also demonstrated AGAIN, that the preseason doesn't mean a darn thing.

Baltimore Ravens - Video footage from inside the elevator that now former Ravens running back Ray Rice beat the crap out of his fiancee (now wife) surfaced this past week and as soon as it got out (TMZ gets another "scoop"), the Ravens terminated Rice's contract and the NFL suspended him indefinitely.

I have strong feelings about domestic violence, let that be clear. But for me, despite the reported ugliness of the new footage (I refuse to watch and help TMZ make more of a name for themselves), I have to wonder why the NFL didn't kick Rice to the curb the first time around. He certainly deserved it. 

Suspending and firing him at this point seems like they are punishing him twice for the same infraction. And on that point alone I'm a little annoyed at the NFL.

Ray Rice is certainly a scumbag, the video definitely confirms that I'm told. But the league punished him once. However ridiculously bad they handled it the first time around, I can't imagine the player's union isn't going to raise a stink on general principle for a player being punished twice.

Minnesota Vikings - It isn't a good time to be Adrian Peterson. Last week reports surfaced that he reportedly told Cowboys owner Jerry Jones that he wanted to play for Dallas. That could not have endeared him to the Vikings ownership, coaches and other players. And the fan base was likely enraged.

And then on Friday, news broke that he had been charged with child abuse in Texas for using a switch to spank one of his sons. SAY WHAT? 

DUDE! How goddamn stupid are you? You used a switch on your son? Have you conveniently forgotten that just last year a son you didn't even know you had was beaten to death by your baby mama's boyfriend? I'm all for discipline but let's get serious here, using a switch may have been a time honored idiotic tradition back in the day but in the here and now, that crap just ain't gonna fly with law enforcement. Oh by the way, the guy who killed that son of yours goes on trial for second degree murder next month. MORON!

For those fantasy football people that have Adrian Peterson on their teams, better make adjustments to your roster, the Vikings have benched him for today's game against the Patriots.

FANTASY FOOTBALL

I actually managed to split my two leagues during Week 1. I really have no confidence in my lineups so getting even 1 win was pretty sweet. Of course, I'm favored to lose in both leagues this week so I might be writing with a "woe is me" vibe next week.

MIRACLE ON ICE USA HOCKEY TEAM NEWS

Just a bit of sad news...Bob Suter, one of the players on the 1980 Lake Placid hockey team that stunned the world by beating the Russians, passed away this week. He was 57 years old. He was a scout for the Minnesota Wild (and father to one of their players, Ryan Suter) as well as a youth hockey figure. 

He's the first of the players from that team to pass away. You can read more about his life here.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

Alabama - The Crimson Tide once again dominated their opponent last week. But it didn't help them keep their #2 ranking.

Despite beating Florida Atlantic University 41-0, the Tide dropped to #3 in the rankings after voters/computers factored in the strength of schedule angle in the Oregon-Michigan State game. Oregon won that game going away and they vaulted up to #2.

As for the FAU game, the Bama defense gave up just 145 yards in total offense (57 rush, 88 pass) and had 3 sacks. 

Given that the game was a blowout, both Blake Sims and Jake Coker saw time at QB. Sims threw for 214 yards and 2 TDS, while rushing for another. Coker had 202 passing yards and a TD. He got sacked once.

The team as a whole rushed for 204 yards, with Kenyan Drake leading the way with just 45 yards (with a TD run). Amari Cooper was the biggest offensive star as he racked up 189 yards receiving and caught a TD pass.

(I'll write about this week's Alabama home game vs. Southern Mississippi and the Boston College home game vs. USC next week.)

MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL

Boston Red Sox - As if the season wasn't going badly enough for the Red Sox, second baseman Dustin Pedroia's season came to an early end when it was announced that he would be undergoing season ending surgery on his hand.

The Boston Herald had an interesting article that broke down all the injuries Pedroia has suffered in recent years and questions whether he'll ever be the same player he was before all the injuries.

Texas Rangers - The Texas Rangers were stunned a bit last week when manager Ron Washington resigned. The Rangers have been playing really badly this season, but Washington wasn't in danger of being fired after 1 down year.

While no specifics have been given, the resignation was termed by Washington as being done to deal with an "off the field personal matter."

The cynical SOB I am, the first thing I thought of was that he'd been caught using cocaine again. I really hope that isn't the case because it would be yet another sports related disappointment and at the rate they are coming these days, the sports pages might just as well be the front pages of a newspaper.

New York Mets - As if the simple fact of being the New York Mets and stinking to high heaven wasn't enough, now we have the story of team COO Jeff Wilpon being sued for discrimination by a female former team executive who became pregnant while unwed. Reading the story, apparently Wilpon acted like a total dick and is seemingly about to pay the price for it. 

It makes me wonder just what is going through the minds of the "men" who run sports teams and or play the games. It is a different world these days, you bumbling Neanderthals!

You can read more about that story here.

BOSTON COLLEGE WOMEN'S BASKETBALL

The women's basketball schedule was released this past week and while they will play ten teams that made the NCAA tournament last year, I have to say I'm slightly disappointed with the slate of home games they'll have this year.

Since I can only attend Sunday games, I can't even think about seeing them play Duke this year. And then there are the teams I'd love to see them play but they are road games: Stanford, Hartford and Louisville.

I'm really psyched to see them play Notre Dame which is the biggest Sunday game on the home schedule, so I'll be getting tickets for that one. After that I don't know which games might strike my fancy. The remaining Sunday games (after the first of the year that is) feature Syracuse, North Carolina State, Florida State and Virginia Tech (which is the final regular season game of the season AND Senior Day.)

You can check out the full schedule here.

WNBA

New York Liberty - Assistant coach Katie Smith has apparently decided to start writing a weekly blog on her website. The first installment breaks down some of her adjustments from being a player to becoming a coach. You can read it here.

Phoenix Mercury - Congratulations go out to the Mercury after they swept the Chicago Sky and clinched their third WNBA title since 2007.

NBA

Atlanta Hawks - It's been quite a week down in Atlanta hasn't it? First the majority owner Bruce Levenson announces he's selling his share of the team after an email he made with huge racial overtones was made public.

Well, I suppose owning up quickly to his rather stupid views is a point in his favor. And it saves NBA commissioner Adam Silver from having to deal with a Donald Sterling sequel to oust an owner clearly out of step with society at large.

And then on Friday it was announced that Hawks GM Danny Ferry was taking an indefinite leave of absence for his role and comments in the seemingly growing story. I don't know why he wasn't fired because he will never be accepted by the players and fans again.

And this brings up a question for me. Am I the only one in the world that was raised properly? 

Where does all this hatred come from? I mean, I was always taught that you don't hate someone based on the color of their skin. I worked in youth basketball for 25 years and when I first started out, there was a knock on the league that only the black coaches won championships. Which was entirely BS even then, but I'd say winning 10 titles as a head coach (11 if you include the one I was an assistant coach for) put that lie to rest.

And why would anyone these days make such sweeping generalizations about players or a race of people? Maybe I've somehow managed to maintain a sense of naivety about race relations but I've yet to meet a person of another color that I've hated based solely that their skin wasn't as white as mine is? For cripe's sake, the man I considered my basketball mentor was a black man whose death from cancer devastated me.

Generally when I've disliked or yes even hated someone it is after I get to know them as a person, and it is based on their personality or attitude...NOT THEIR SKIN COLOR!

I'm a stick in the mud about some stuff in this world but I can't imagine the mindset of people who hate or discriminate against someone for reasons of their skin.

It seems that the powers that be running NBA ballclubs really need to either get with the times or get the hell out of the game. Or maybe it would be enough for them to simply grow the hell up!

HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS

Wareham Girls Varsity Soccer - The team dropped a 2-0 match to Fairhaven on Monday to start off their week. They lost to ORR on Wednesday 6-0. Meanwhile, the JV team which has one of my former players (Gabby) on the team lost 5-0. 

On Friday, the Vikings varsity managed to find the net but lost to Dighton-Rehoboth 6-2 for their 40th straight loss. Brianna had 8 saves in the game while Paige was cited in the paper for impressing with her play.

Wareham Boys Varsity Soccer - The Vikings fell to Dighton-Rehoboth 6-1 for their fourth straight loss to open the season. My ex-player Eoghan assisted on the team's only goal.

Wareham Girls Volleyball - The team dropped their match with Fairhaven by the score of 3 games to none. But the team got their first win on Wednesday night when they beat ORR 3 games to 2. They are now 1-3 on the season.

By the way, you can check out an article (with a couple of quotes from one of my ex-players Rae-Lyn) about the only boy playing on the WHS girls volleyball team here.

Friday's match against Dighton-Rehoboth saw the Vikings win 3 games to 1 to up their record to 2-3. Rae-Lyn had 6 digs, 18 kills and four aces in the match.

Wareham Girls Field Hockey - The team lost to Dighton-Rehoboth on Wednesday by the score of 7-0.

Upper Cape Tech JV Football - The team lost to Mashpee in their season opener but my girlfriend's son Connor said that he led the defense in tackles for the game.

Wareham Varsity Football - While the team has an off week this week, I wanted to make sure I included a photo of one of my ex-players from the opening game. Josh (#10) scored a TD in the game and is being looked upon to be one of the team's top offensive contributors.

By the way, to show you how far the Vikings might have to come this year, Bishop Stang (the team that beat them last week 42-26 last week) managed to somehow lose their second game on Friday night 46-2. And that is not a typo, they managed just TWO points against their second opponent after demolishing Wareham's defense the week before.

MISCELLANEOUS

Movies - I saw the movie Draft Day this past week. It had a few relatively preposterous scenes but overall I actually liked it. The one problem the movie demonstrates so aptly is that the best possible GM candidates for the team are in Hollywood working as scriptwriters. The actual GMs the team has had over the years keep the fanbase in the eternal but fruitless hope that they will ever actually build a contender.

Books - This week's book purchase was the paperback edition of the Sara Paretsky mystery Critical Mass. It is the latest in her V.I. Warshawski series.

Music - I went out to see a cover band called Sound Tower last Saturday night with my girlfriend. The guy who owned the Rock Is Life.com site that I wrote reviews for in the past is the band's frontman but I'd never seen them live before. We stayed for two sets and I found it quite enjoyable. I really liked their cover of the Bad Company song "Can't Get Enough". You can check them out at http://www.soundtowerrocks.com

Here's a pic of me and Julie at the show:

You can check out the new Mr. Big song "The Monster In Me" here (Youtube Link).

Movies (Fan Films) - I'm a big fan of the show Firefly and the follow up movie Serenity. And this week brought a new fan film based in the same universe. The film is actually getting positive reviews online and I thought you all might like to check it out. You can see it HERE!

 

 

 

 

NASCAR Update And Other Fast Stuff 9-14-14
Category: Daily Blog 2.0
Tags: Chicagoland Chase 101 Ambrose Johnson Stewart Harvick

                          

La Dee Da Dee Dee. La Dee Da Dee Da folks. Welcome to my NASCAR updates and other fast stuff Gabbers and others. Been looking up at those same stars these 2 are a lot lately. Wondering about so many things. How do things go so badly in your life that you never want to see those stars again? It would seem that while I was at my Uncles funeral at lunch time the other Saturday, my brothers Ex and mother of his little girl was putting a needle in her arm for the last time. All the court room drama, the crazy accusations and fighting have all come to that last moment. Now there's a little girl who sits and looks at the stars wondering if her mommy is one of them.

Then there's Ace. He came into the world 6 weeks premature this Saturday night. He's early just like my Uncle Bud who passed away. He was 2 months premature. They put him between 2 pillows in the bun warmer side of the wood stove. No such thing as an incubator back then. You made due. So Ace my newest nephew starts out life a bit early. I just know he'll be a scrapper. So what do you see in the stars?

Been playing with my newest culinary impliment of vegetational destruction. Finally got me a Vitamix. Bought the base on eBay used for $109 and a Blendtek Wildside carafe for Vitamix blenders for $100. I will never peel another tomato again. Made the most awesome tomato sauce ever. 1 onion and 6 tomatoes, give out your best Tim Allen OH OH OH and VRRRRRRRRRRROOOOOOOOMMMMM-MMM-MMM-MMM. Life is good. 

AMBROSE TO BID THE USA GOOD BYE

Our Aussie has decided to hang up his Sprint Cup steering wheel at the end of the 2014 season and take his family back to Australia. He's happy with what he's achieved considering his racing back ground. In Australia there are no asphalt oval tracks. The Super 8 racing he came from was all road course. He's disappointed that he didn't win on an oval but he feels that it's time to take his kids back to the Australian way of life. He didn't give any clues as to what or if he'd be racing in the future. I say good luck to you Ambrose. Pleasure to have you in Cup.

DARIAN GRUBB IS BACK

Denny Hamlin's crew chief Darian will be back fresh off his suspension to jump up on the box at Chicagoland. Darian said it was a 10c part that failed on the car. It wasn't torqued correctly and became lose during the race. I think Knuas said the same thing about a few of his infractions too. 

STEWART & HARVICK TO SWAP PIT CREWS

Starting at Chicagoland Harvick will have Stewart's crew. Harvick never seems to be happy with any crew he has. I once watched a truck race where he fired his crew in the middle of the race but then recinded it after the race. I don't expect him to be happy with Stewart's crew either but SHR want to give Harvick the best chance at a Championship he can have. Good luck with that.

JOHNSON FEELING BETTER AFTER RICHMOND PIT ROAD SPELL

Johnson got out of his car after the Richmond race, sat down and couldn't get up. His crew helped him onto a golf cart and to the infield care center where he spent about 90 minutes getting fluids for severe dehydration. He blamed a new driver cooling system that wasn't functioning properly on his issue. He said they will be swapping out that new system back to the old tried and true one going forward.

                  

CHASE 101

So it's now GO TIME. I stole that from a Go Daddy commercial. Actually it is go time. Go or go home. We're in the Chase. So here's the low down.

There are 16 drivers. Each starts with 2000 points plus 3 points for each win.

CHALLENGER ROUND

After the next 3 races, the 4 drivers at the bottom of the points are eliminated. A win in any of these 3 races advances you to the next round. Points are reset to 3000.

CONTENDER ROUND

After the next 3 races, 4 more drivers will be eliminated from the bottom. Again, a win in any of these races gets you advanced to the next round. Points will be reset at 4000.

ELIMINATOR ROUND

After 3 more races, 4 more drivers are eliminated. Again a win in any of the 3 races advances to next round. Points reset to 5000.

CHAMPIONSHIP ROUND

Simple as that box of chocolates Forest loves. Last race and who ever finishes the highest in that race out of the last 4 drivers gets the big trophy. 

Keselowski says the last 4 drivers will be himself, Logano, Gordon and Dale Jr. They have been the most consistant. My money is on Dale Jr. Just a feeling.

During the Chase the cars that are in the Chase at the moment will have markings. A yellow front splitter, Chase decal on the drivers door, yellow roof number and yellow name windshield visor. As they get eliminated they will go back to regular colors.

CHICAGOLAND PREVIEW

This is a 1.5 mile tri-oval track. Fast and bumpy, long green flag runs (usually) and pit road strategy will play a huge role in the out come.

Harvick - Won the Nationwide race Saturday with that pit strategy I just talked about. He starts 12th. Look for Happy to be in the top 10

Ky Bu -Won the truck race on Saturday. He's been so explosive lately in Cup. Most self explosive. He's got pole due to a rain out in qualifying. Not putting any bets on him.

Hamlin - He's just as inconsistent as his team mate Ky Bu. Not touching him either.

Johnson - Now that it's Chase time I'm guessing the all the monkey business is done. He'll be in the top 10.

Dale Jr - Mr Consistent starts 13th. Top 10

Gordon - Starts 8th behind Johnson. Top 10

Larson - Our rookie with the mostest. He scraped the right side of his car in practice after a tire went down. He finished 2nd in the Nationwide race. Starts 10th and he'll be a top 10

Edwards - Fastest in last practice. Starts 3rd. He's on a lame duck mission but I think a top 10 is doable.

Newman - Starts 2nd. Top 10

Kenseth led 89 laps last year on his way to the win. Repeat? Maybe. He starts 5th. More like top 10

Keselowski - Starts 25th. He struggled here last year. Top 10

McMurray - Doing awesome with the Hendrick cars this year. Top 10

The Danica - Was 2nd fastest in last practice. She starts 18th. Could she do another 6th place finish like at Atlanta? I hope so because I have her in one of my fantasy leagues but I'm not going to call it. 

Stenhouse - The Danica's sweety starts 4th. He had a top 10 last year. 

So we're off to the first race of the Chase. The NFL is off too. So is the NCAA. In more ways than we can count. Fantasy owners are miserable, Goodell is biting his nails and Pink-tober is around the corner. I think I'll just go out and do some star gazing. Any body else coming?

And I'm outta here.....

 

 

 

 

Pinch Me... Am I Dreaming About the '80s?
Category: FEATURED
Tags: Boston College upset

 

What a year this is in college football so far.

A Virginia Tech team that stunned an already reeling Big Ten last week by knocking off Ohio State on their field, fairly handily too, this week got its lunch handed to it by... East Carolina??

And that may not even have been the biggest shocker. A lot of folks around here think it happened in their neighborhood.

I have to admit, I didn't even know the game was scheduled.

After years of declining play, the one supposed 'major league' college football team in the northeast, Boston College (sorry UConn), no longer attracted my interest as it had in the past. The days of Flutie, Coughlin, Ryan et al had become a fading memory.

Imagine my surprise as I surfed the guide on the TV and saw BC playing Southern Cal at Alumni Stadium at 8! I saw it listed at 7:49 or so. Worth a shot, sez I.

Speaking of 'alumni', I'm no alumnus of BC. Heck, I'm not even Catholic. But given the chance I'll root for the locals. Sooo, I tuned in and saw what I was afraid I'd see as BC fell behind 10-0 in the first quarter. Yep, 40-0 sounds about right.

This was the USC team that beat Stanford on their field last week to leapfrog them in the rankings, rising to #9 coming into this game. BC, meanwhile, looked to have a shot early against a pretty good Pitt team but collapsed in a hailstorm of misplays and letdowns that seemed to mark the defunct Spaziano era. New coach Addazio didn't seem to be faring better. Young QB Murphy looked strong-armed but unable to read defenses very well. In fact, he'd finish with 54 yards passing.

Then, almost too fast to figure, the BC defense began to stifle USC's machinelike offense and the BC offense, despite some dropped balls and bad throws, began to score points. By halftime it was 20-17 BC! It could have been more, but Addazio made me climb walls by opting for a 47-yard FG attempt by a question-mark long kicker (BC's 'short' kicker had already muffed an extra point) with 19 seconds left in the half and the ball on the USC 30. 3rd and 2. No timeouts, but 19 seconds. Good grief you dummy, this is Southern Cal you're playing, not Southern Maine. You don't nurse a 3-point lead with half the game to go against these guys. You don't go for 3-pointers given a real shot at the end zone. You score points. You gamble on the big stuff, not on a long field goal that's even more of a gamble. Wait a minute... the QB is the holder. Will they pull one fast one, or at least try a pass into the end zone or along the sidelines (wondered I and the announcing crew)?  Aaaarrrghhhhh..... he kicked the stupid thing. And missed, of course.

So into halftime I went figuring coachie just chickened his team out of a chance to win. The second half would surely be the anticipated landslide.

Little did I know BC would come out of the locker room looking better than ever. Suddenly with half the 3rd gone they were up 27-17. USC couldn't move the ball. The quarterback was eating more field turf than a lost earthworm. With half the 4th gone it became 30-17. Then the fun started.

USC woke up. With 4:32 they scored to cut the lead to 6. I flashed back to Addazio's decision before the half. But what's this? QB Murphy, whose strong arm may not always send the ball in the right direction, once again showcased his strong legs and broke one for 66 yards to make it 37-24 with 3:30 left! He would finish with 191 yards rushing. I'm no fan of running quarterbacks, at least in the pros. Doesn't work. In college? Sometimes it does. Did in this game.

USC wasn't giving up that easily. With 1:18 left they again drew to 6. You knew what was coming. The onside kick was recovered by Boston College at the 45. Three Hilliman runs later it was at the USC 6, and it was knee time.

I went with a couple of actual BC alumni, old hometown friends, to the stadium in the early 90s to see a BC team having an off-year lose a squeaker to Gino Torretta's Miami Hurricanes. It was a great game. I watched (and in fact tested out my first VCR by recording the 4th quarter) the great BC win over Miami in 1984 when Doug Flutie outduelled Bernie Kosar. But this game had no apologies to make. It won't go down in the annals with the Flutie game, but it may be a shot in the arm for a flagging program that needed a positive jolt.

452 yards rushing? Against USC? Hey Stanford, how come you couldn't do that? 

 

Does the non-sense really ever end?
Category: Daily Blog 2.0

Welp, it continues:

Adrian Peterson gets the attention of Johnny Law because he took a switch to his kid.  Now call me stupid, but don't you think that a guy who just last year lost one of his other children because his baby mama boyfriend beat it so severely he killed it would be a bit more smart in his choice of discipline?  At least Minny gave him some time off.

That led Roddy White, he of Atlanta to complain that his fantasy team will suffer.  Gee Roddy, wouldn't want that to happen...

Chris Davis of Baltimore gets 25 games for amphetamines.  Enjoy the playoffs from the clubhouse Chris.

Greg Hardy down in Charlotte, and I suspect Ray McDonald in SF are gonna start this week.  Oh joy.

Danny Ferry takes an indefinite leave of absence for making non-sensical comments about Luol Deng.

MLB suspends Anthony DiScalfini of Miami two games for throwing at and hitting Carlos Gomez after Milwaukee took out Giancarlo Stanton and on the very next pitch hit another Miami batter.  But that's OK, that pitcher that took out Stanton and hit another?  He only got fined.  SMFH.

Even in the MMA - Nick Diaz loses his spot in the upcoming UFC bout because he drew his second DUI in ten months - MERE MILES FROM MY FREAKING HOUSE!!!  Oh, did I mention the obstruction of a cop, destruction of evidence (trying to puke the alcohol out), driving on a suspended license?  And this fool lives mere miles from my house?  Great...

Oh, and I guess the new NFL drug policy is gonna come out and what is it's immediate impact?  That's right, some of the guys currently under suspension will have their punishments reduced including Wes Welker, Dion Jordan, and (get this)...Josh Gordon.

Best yet:  NBA owner of the New York franchise James Dolan?  Yeah, he's rolling around literally singing the blues and has a song out that is about -- Trayvon Martin.  Not only that, this guys band is going to open for the Eagles on some of their East Coast stops.  Wow...

Finally, I guess Merrill Hoge got loose and tore Johnny "Bench" or Johnny "trademark" a new one saying this guy is just as bad as Tim Tebow.

 

Q-o-t-D 9/13/14 Tags: NFL Fantasy Football

Considering that Fantasy Football is almost always played for money...Should the NFL ban players from taking part in Fantasy Football Leagues?

 

 

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