So, this week is a major adjustment period for me...Getting use to my new position at work, which was an old position I had...I live in a world different from many...I tell people I got a promotion at work, and they don't get it means I work nights and all weekends now...but that's a different topic for a different blog...
Baseball season started, and I missed is so far...Taking the promotion also means I give up coaching Little Beeze's Baseball team again...I thought it was going to bother me more then him, but I'm not sure now, since he's saying he doesn't want to play...
I've also been missing the crunch time of hockey...But I came across a topic Sunday night after getting home from work...The NYPD and FDNY had their annual charity hockey game...And tied 3-3, a huge, bench clearing brawl broke out...
That guy has a few more clips on his Instagram...
I watched this video a few times...First thing I felt was, 'some one shut that annoying bitch up!...Holy fuck throw her down on the ice and let tell those cops "PD Sucks" to their face...And I get it...I trust a Fire Fighter probably more then I trust a cop...But that's because I my personally skewed opinion of Police based on relatives that I have who are Police officers...I'll never forget my one uncle, still wearing his police uniform and telling us, "never trust a cop!" And there was that douchebag that pulled me over last year...Dude was total full of shit...Dirty fucker trying to make his Lindale quota...Clevelanders know what I'm talking about!
But I know not all cops are bad...I know Police officers put their lives on the line every day, just like Fire Fighters do...So hearing the crowd bash the cops annoyed me...Although the "Dunkin' Donuts!" chant was pretty funny!
And I get that there is a built in rivalry between Police Departments and Fire Departments...And I know playing hockey against rivals, whether friendly or not, can get heated...But so often, we hear the talk about how celebrities, and athletes "should" behave, because "they're role models"...But if you're raising your kids to look at Selena Gomez, Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Cruise, and LeBron James, as role models, you're doing your job wrong...Having your kids look up to the Police, and Firefighters, along with Teachers, and Doctors Without Borders, is a much better way to go...Let alone showing them that bridge, that their great grandfather helped build...
So seeing these two teams of men I would want my kids to consider role models, brawling during a charity hockey game, depressed me a bit...Am I holding these men to I higher standard then I should? They're human...They need to blow off steam like the rest of us...But it was a charity game...You can play a good, and even physical hockey game without a brawl breaking out...Should they have tried to remember it was a charity game? And that it's 2014, where nearly everyone in this arena has a camera on their phone?
Never before have I talked, or written about fighting in hockey in a negative manner...But I guess I am this time...I could have taken it if two guys dropped the gloves and had a normal fight that was justified...But a bench clearing brawl...And from those close clips on Instagram, you could see it got ugly...Right now, I feel a bit disappointed...But also happy I'm not a New Yorker...
By the way, the NYPD won 8-5...Their first win in five years...
Ah, spring. Good grief, this winter took forever to end. I’m not usually one to wish away time, but damn between ice storms and “Polar Vortices,” I’m soooo ready for any sign spring has “sprung.” It was 50 degrees today, I had the sunroof open and was wearing flip flops...with my jeans and long sleeve t-shirt. The world has started to show signs that the long ass winter is FINALLY on it’s way out and who am I to not to celebrate that.
Now, I’m not a big college sports guy, but the National Labor Relations Board kind of affect my profession so I pay attention when the two things intersect. A recent NLRB decision ruled that the Northwestern University footballs players were “employees” of the University for purposes of the act, and as such were entitled to a vote on whether they should be represented by a union.
In a case like this, the totality of the circumstances matter, so not every NCAA football program is now at the whim of an organizing effort, but it does send a shot across the bow. The fact of the matter is that the NCAA is not considered to be an “employer,” but rather the University is, which means that there’s really no likelihood there would be an NFL style master agreement negotiated, it does mean certain things.
First, this ruling only affects those athletes who receive a scholarship. Now to be an academic, there would have to be a high degree of influence from academics, as opposed to be spending more time with football coaches than on academics. What you should likely see, then, is a greater emphasis on the college aspect of the “student athlete’s” education.
The second thing to consider is what exactly could be mandatory subjects of collective bargaining. In this case it’s likely insurance, and liability for injury. It’s not likely to be around scholarship dollars.
So the fact of the matter is that this is about one school, which may or may not work their student athletes to the point that they’re no longer students. You will likely see more schools placing a greater emphasis on their student athlete’s academics. The real roadblock for the unionization attempt is that these monies the NLRB is considering “wages,” would actually become “wages,” and therefore taxable, would would likely be resisted when the players really DO vote. The message has been sent though,and going forward you’re likely to see a greater emphasis on the well being of player athletes, or put another way, players will be more demonstrably students.
So, it turns out Florida State’s new logo was leaked from...wait for it...Walmart. So that happened, but really is there a difference? I mean gone is the “Florida State” written down the feather, but other than that is there really some thing not to like about the logo? But, Damn, there’s all kinds of crap to be taken after having modified the logo. Seriously? Grow up.
Somethings are just too good not to have SOMETHING to say.
This past week, after the Red Sox were finished losing to the Orioles, they headed to the White House to be welcomed as the World Champions. Johnny Gomes didn’t fail to impress, with his red and white striped jacket. But there’s just a touch of controversy around it - David Ortiz asked the President for a “selfie.” Now there some controversy about it because there’s a question about whether Samsung paid him for the selfie - a la Ellen’s famous “groupie.” Look, it’s a great shot, and whatever Samsung could’ve compensated the guy, wouldn’t have been worth the opportunity to meet the President. How much would they have had to pay a guy who’s worth north of $45-Million? It just seems so unlikely. That said, it probably was a bad move only because of the hub bub around it. Too many questions just waiting to be asked. It was a great shot, but maybe one left on his own photostream.
Men's Hockey - The Eagles beat UMass-Lowell 4-3 last week and advanced to the Frozen Four. They'll play Union on April 10th in the national semifinals. BC is 28-7-4 on the season and it would be great if they could win another championship.
By the way, does anyone know why there is such a long delay before the Frozen Four games?
Men's Basketball - For those who didn't see my Coaching Carousel entry this week, the men's basketball team has a new coach in Jim Christian. He spent the last two years at Ohio University where he went 49-22.
In demonstration of the fact that I don't actually know EVERYTHING, when I first saw the report of his hiring, my reaction was "Who?!"
He seems like he's a pretty good coach, though coaching at Ohio is a bit different than coaching in the ACC. His first order of business is going to be convincing sophomore Olivier Hanlan to stay in school. Rumor has it Hanlan is considering entering the NBA draft.
If he's successful in keeping Hanlan in school, he has to recruit ACC ready talent, win with them and re-energize a fan base that has come to expect losing rather than winning. It is a tall order. Here's hoping he can do it.
Women's Basketball - While their season is over, preparations for next year are already underway. The women's basketball team's Twitter feed has been covering the workouts the team is going through the past week or so.
The losing has finally started to fray the patience of coach Brad Stevens over the last week or so. He hasn't gone ballistic or anything but his comments in the press after games and such have had a bit of frustration in them.
After four more losses this week, it isn't hard to imagine him at least metaphorically pulling out his hair at night. A 23-53 record will do that to you.
The week started off with back to back games against the Chicago Bulls. The first game was a 107-102 loss that saw Rajon Rondo score 17 points and dish out 11 assists to lead the team. Jared Sullinger had 16 points and 10 boards. Five others also hit double figures in scoring.
Jerryd Bayless scored 18 points in the second Bulls game to lead Boston but they lost 94-80.
The Wizards pasted Boston 118-92 despite 25 points from Sullinger.
On Friday night, the Sixers knocked off the Celtics 111-102. Bayless scored 23 points and Rondo had a triple double (11 points, 11 rebounds, 16 assists) but Philly's Michael Carter-Williams had 24 points to power the Sixers.
The season is winding down and Boston is obviously not headed to the playoffs. I'd imagine Stevens and GM Danny Ainge will be looking at these final few games to see which players continue to play hard despite having nothing to look forward to in terms of postseason play. Those that do will have a good shot at returning, and those that play as if they've given up will find their roles either reduced or recast with someone else.
Four games into the season and the Red Sox are 2-2. Nothing spectacular, nothing horrifying. I saw the end of the opener and was bummed when Jon Lester gave up that homer to Nelson Cruz. I missed the 2nd game but saw the start of Game 3.
I was happy to see the Fenway crowd boo the hell out of Milwaukee's Ryan Braun yesterday during opening day in Boston, even though the Brewers won 6-2.
Say what you want, but Boston sure does put on a good opening day show, particularly after a World Series win.
I know there are those who are already breaking down stuff about these four games and will predict greatness or divine tragedy for the season but for me, it is just far too early to have an opinion on how I think the team will do this year.
Plus, I'm a Red Sox fan, my default setting is hope for the best, prepare for the worst.
By the way, here's a look at the World Series ring:
CBI Tournament - The best of 3 series between Siena and Fresno State came down to the final game on Saturday.
After splitting the first two games, it was the Siena Saints (the alma mater of one of my cousins) who put the 81-68 beatdown on Fresno State to win the 2014 CBI Championship.
WNIT - It was Rutgers vs. UTEP for the WNIT championship on Saturday afternoon. Rutgers went up big, but blew the lead. The game was tied with 8 seconds left before they went the length of the floor for a layup with 2.1 seconds left and went on to win the championship.
Tennessee Lady Vols - The Lady Vols season ended in the Sweet 16 with a loss to Maryland last weekend. They finish 29-6 and lose leading scorer Meighan Simmons to graduation.
The two biggest reasons for their loss were the 22 turnovers in the game and the fact that they had no defensive answer for Maryland's Alyssa Thomas. She scored 33 points and grabbed 13 rebounds.
Simmons led Tennessee with 31 points but Jasmine Jones was the only other player in double figures for scoring in the game. Bashaara Graves had 14 rebounds and Isabelle Harrison had 10 boards.
But with Simmons gone, the question becomes how do you replace her offense? And let's face it, Tennessee is no longer an ELITE team. They are very good and they have a lot of talent, but it doesn't seem to be the same quality as in past seasons.
And on the Rebkell message board, one poster even posed the question of whether it was time to move on from coach Holly Warlick or not. This was a ridiculous question in my mind. She's been there for decades of course, but she's only in her 2nd year as the head coach. And she's been reasonably successful. Not as successful as Pat Summitt (very few coaches ever could say that) and maybe not as successful as the fan base wants, but all in all she's done more than enough to stay in charge.
But there are things that need to be done. At times this season it seemed as if the team was completely out of synch. They failed to forge a distinct identity. Sure they mostly beat the teams you expected them to, but the wins over the BIG programs were few and far between.
They need to find an identity that incorporates the talent they already have and the incoming freshman class. They've got Bashaara Graves, Isabelle Harrison and Cierra Burdick in the post as well as seemingly underused Mercedes Russell. Andraya Carter took over as the point guard when Ariel Massengale just disappeared from the rotation. But their guards are definitely going to have to step things up immensely.
And in the recruiting wars, Tennessee simply has to start landing those high level blue chip players again. The ones currently heading to UConn, Stanford, Notre Dame and Baylor.
Otherwise, the Lady Vols will end up seeing a coaching change sooner rather than later. And the more you clear the tradition from the program the more the school's AD will be able to put his stamp on the program and he's already demonstrated he's less concerned about the women's teams at the school than he is about the men's teams.
Wake Forest - It's now official. The Demon Deacons have hired ex-Tulsa coach Danny Manning as the new men's basketball coach. In my coaching carousel post this week I noted about Manning being interviewed for the job and how I didn't think it was such a good idea to go to a program that is never really going to compete in the fully stacked at the top ACC.
Men's Final Four - I won't be able to include coverage of the 2nd national semi-final game, but Kevin Ollie and the UConn men's basketball team just destroyed my bracket.
After being down early, the Huskies dominated Florida and advanced to the national championship game. This is one hell of a turnaround for UConn who on March 8th got annihilated by Louisville and for sure looked like they were not even going to make the Sweet 16.
HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS
The spring sports season has gotten underway. I'll be keeping track of the Wareham girls track team, the JV and varsity softball teams for Wareham and the varsity girls softball team at Upper Cape.
While the track team hasn't started yet, Wareham's softball teams have.
The JV team won their season opener against Middleboro 4-3. Gabby is the catcher and she had a hit and a RBI in the game. She also threw out a runner at 2nd base.
The varsity team lost to Middleboro 7-0. Breanna had 2 hits. Rae-Lyn pitched giving up 5 hits with 8 K's. In their Friday afternoon game against GNB Voc-tech, Rae-Lyn got the loss on the mound as the Lady Bears rolled 13-2. Breanna had 3 hits in the loss.
As for Upper Cape, the girls team won their first two games, including a 22-5 win in Game 2. Unfortunately they lost to Bourne yesterday afternoon 6-5.
TV - This past Monday was the series finale of How I Met Your Mother and it was an so bad that it ruined the entire series for me.
This is what I wrote on Facebook about the finale:
"How do I feel about the How I Met Your Mother series finale? The show ended at 9:01 pm EST tonight and I was glad that I had never invested in the DVD sets of each season, because by 9:02 pm EST, I would've been listing them on eBay.
It took 9 years for them to tell this story and 60 minutes to absolutely F*CKING DESTROY IT. What a horrifically bad piece of crap final episode.
People should be ...ashamed of themselves and their ability to discern good from garbage if they thought this was a good way to end the show. And I mean both the fanbase and the people responsible for the show.
Much like the reboot Battlestar Galactica show, HIMYM becomes another series where the ending was such a catastrophic travesty, that I can never watch the series again.
And while, yes, it is JUST a TV show, I invested 9 years in it...the return on investment should've been better than what the ending was.
Just an abomination of a series finale."
The Walking Dead season finale last Sunday was excellent. Oh and the funny people populating the Net had a couple of good fake photos related to the show this past week. You can see them below. Believe me, if you are fan of the show you will TOTALLY get the meaning to each photo.
Game of Thrones starts tonight (9pm EST on HBO) and I'm really looking forward to that. Before that though, you can check out this hilarious NSFW Honest Trailer about the first three seasons.
Movies - I went and saw Captain America: The Winter Soldier on Friday. It was fantastic. A really great movie that combined all the expected heroics of a comic book movie and infused it with the great drama of both a political and spy thriller. It was extremely well done and one of the better Marvel Comics movies they have made. I'd pay to see it again in the theaters and it will be a must buy when it hits DVD.
I also saw 47 Ronin on PPV. It was a decent enough movie but I don't feel it was one that I'll end up watching multiple times.
Oh and I saw the Vince Vaughn "comedy" Delivery Man yesterday. It had moments of funny but the concept of the story doesn't really lend itself to a hour and 45 minute comedy movie. Especially when they try to cram in some relatively dramatic situations as well.
Comics - I'm a big comic book fan and one of my favorite comic writers is Peter David. I have boxes and boxes of all the comics he's written and even that isn't complete. And now he's returning to one of his previous characters. Marvel Comics is doing another Spider-Man 2099 series! Peter David wrote the first series and they are bringing him back for this one too. This of course means that I will be adding the title to my pull list when it gets solicited next month.
I picked up Volume 5 trade paperback of the series DMZ this week. Entitled "The Hidden War" it tells 6 smaller stories about characters both new and established. Unfortunately I didn't really connect with this round of the story much at all.
Books - I picked up the new Faye Kellerman book The Beast this week. It's the latest in her Peter Decker / Rina Lazarus mystery series.
Music - I'm a reader of Classic Rock magazine and each issue comes with a free CD that has about 15 songs on it from a variety of bands both new and old. Usually, there is one or two songs I like and the rest kind of just leave me feeling EHHHH about them. The latest CD has one particular song on it called "Julie (Hang Out a Little Longer). It's by Nato Coles and the Blue Diamond Band. I found it to be superb and made sure to mention it on FB. The band saw it and hit the like button on my comment. I thought I'd include a Youtube link to the song for you to hear it as well.
Also, you can check out the new Red Dragon Cartel video for the song "Shout It Out" below.