Today I would like to do a feature on the History of the WWE. But, first some news and the results of “Who’s the best on the Mic.”
“Stone Cold” Steve Austin will be appearing on Raw on March 7th, from Dallas, Texas.
Chris Jericho will be a contestant on Dancing with the Stars.
WWE signs Mexican star Mistico.
“Bullet” Bob Armstrong will be inducted into the WWE Hall Of Fame.
Michael Cole will wrestle Jerry Lawler with Jack Swagger in the corner of Cole as his personal trainer at WrestleMania.
Abdullah the Butcher says he will be a 2011 WWE Hall of Fame inductee.
The results for “Who’s the best on the Mic:”
1. The Rock
2. Jessie “The Body” Ventura
3. Ric Flair
4. John Cena
5. Degeneration X
History of the World Wrestling Entertainment
Everyone has heard of World Wrestling Entertainment, but few know the exact roots of the company that has dominated pro wrestling for the past 60 years.
The History of the WWE beings with the creation of Capitol Wrestling Corporation (CWC) in 1953. CWC was the idea of promoter Raymond “Toots” Mondt. He enlisted wrestling East Coast promoters Roderick “Jesse” McMahon and Ray Fabiani. Capitol Wrestling Association (CWA), the wrestling company under CWC, joined the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA). The NWA was a group of Independent Wrestling Organizations located throughout the Midwest, Northeast and Southeast parts of the United States. They shared a common Champion in their territories. In mid-1953, Vince McMahon Sr. replaced his father (Jess) in the promotion.
In a short period of time, McMahon and Mondt dominated the wrestling territory of the NWA by booking over 70% of the Alliances bookings, primarily in the Northeast. Mondt took McMahon under “his wings” and taught him about booking and how to work in the wrestling business. Business thrived between Maine, Washington D.C, Pittsburgh and points in-between. It’s during the later part of 1953 when McMahon Sr. took a more active control of Capitol Wrestling Alliance.
Capitol Wrestling Association had its run from 1953-1963 with stars such as Pedro Morales, Buddy Rogers, Bruno Sammartino, “Chief Jay” Strongbow, Eddie Graham, Haystacks Calhoun, Johnny Valentine, Ivan Koloff, Lou Albano, Arnold Scaaland, Gorgeous George, to name just a few. If you notice, the stars of CWA would serve as the backbone of the stars of the WWWF.
Disharmony existed between members of the NWA against CWA, over the use of Champion, “Nature Boy” Buddy Rodgers. Rodgers was being used strictly in the Northeast. In January of 1963, Capitol Wrestling Corporation split from the NWA, and changed its name from Capitol Wrestling Association to World Wide Wrestling Federation (WWWF). Buddy Rogers was the 1st WWWF World Champion.
From 1963 til 1979, WWWF was thriving in packed arena’s in Washington, DC, Baltimore, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and its main arena, Madison Square Garden. In mid-1960’s “Toots” retired and sold his shares of the WWWF to Vince McMahon Sr.. But, before Mondt retired he got Vince to make Bruno Sammartino the “star” of the company. Needless to say, that was the smartest move in the young stages of the WWWF. Capitalizing on the vast Italian population in the New York area Bruno held the WWWF Heavyweight Championship for almost 8 consecutive years, to this date it is still a record. The WWWF also had a strong Spanish following which led them to elevate Pedro Morales to WWWF Heavyweight Champion. In 1979, World Wide Wrestling Federation became known as World Wrestling Federation (WWF). This was done because it was a tongue-twister to say World Wide Wrestling Federation than World Wrestling Federation. Even with the name change, everything remained status quo for the company.
Vince McMahon Jr., and Titan Sports, purchased Capitol Wrestling Corporation from his father in 1982. It was during Vince McMahon Junior’s reign as owner that the wrestling world was turned upside down. In the past, wrestling promotions were divided into territories. Promoter’s stayed within their own boundaries. McMahon began an expansion process that fundamentally changed the sport. Regional promoters were extremely upset when World Wrestling Federation broke the unwritten law of regionalism around which the entire industry had been based. WWF started televising its shows to stations across the nation. With new revenue coming in Vince McMahon started raiding talent from rival promoters.
NWA stars “Rowdy” Roddy Piper, Jack Brisco, Greg “The Hammer” Valentine, Jerry Brisco, “Cowboy” Bob Orton and Ricky “The Dragon” Steamboat joined the WWF. Also, Verne Gagne’s American Wresting Association (AWA) lost Bobby “the Brain” Heenan , Gene Okerlund, Adrian Adonis, Ken Patera, Jim Brunzell, Jesse Ventura and Hulk Hogan. Now the expansion of the Federation began in earnest as they started touring nationally, officially ending the old standing territory boundaries of yesterday. With Hulk Hogan and “Hulkamania” running wild, things looked bright for the WWF. In 1984, WWF purchased Stu Hart’s Stampede Wrestling.
In an bold move, the WWF banked its future on a super card called “WrestleMania,” a pay-per-view extravaganza, on closed-circuit television. Vince McMahon Jr. targeted the public who were not regular wrestling fans. He hired celebrities Mr. T and Cyndi Lauper to get mainstream media interested. MTV played a role with young viewers by featuring a lot of coverage of the WWF with programming on their network.
WrestleMania was at Madison Square Garden on March 31, 1985 to a resounding success. In the main event, in front of 19,121 fans in attendance, was Hulk Hogan and Mr. T versus Roddy Pipper and Paul Orndoff. This event is sometimes credited as the debut of what McMahon called "sports entertainment." Vince McMahon had long since recognized that professional wrestling was more about entertainment than actual sport and this proved the point.
In 1993, WWF centralized it television syndication from many different stations across the nation, to one, when Monday Night Raw made its debut on the USA network. It is the longest running television show of all-time.
The low point in the history of WWF was 1994, when a rash of problems with steroid abuse and distribution of steroids. Also sexual harassment allegations against WWF employees were filed. This turned out to be a disaster as it cost over $4 million to exonerate Vince McMahon. To cover the cost Vince had to cut pay for front office personnel and wrestlers. When that happened many wrestlers and managers left the WWF and joined the only real competitor, World Championship Wrestling (WCW).
It took several years for the WWF to recover from its down fall. WCW countered with their own Monday Night show called WCW Monday Nitro to go head to head with Monday Night Raw. Nitro started at 8 PM, while Raw started at 9 PM. This led to what is called the Monday Night Wars.
The Monday Night Wars went from 1995-1998. Ratings swung back and forth for the year, then in mid-1996 WCW began a 2 year domination. With the arrival of Kevin Nash and Scott Hall to WCW things looked bleak for the WWF. It got even bleaker with the arrival to WCW of Hulk Hogan and the creation of the New World Order (Nash, Hall, Hogan).
Again, WWF could not right itself. WWF started taping Monday Night Raw on a weekly basis. Talent continued to leave WWF, as Alundra Blayze, Psyco Sid and Rick Rude joined WCW. The head of WCW, Eric Bischoff would humiliate WWF on WCW programming. He went even as far as telling WCW fans what the results of WWF matches were. Even though it was a low point for the company, new talent did arrive at WWF in Ron Simmons, Brian Pillman, Steve Austin, Leon White and Mankind, all from WCW.
Rock bottom was reached at WWF headquarters, when Bret Hart left after a controversial loss to Shawn Michaels at Survivor Series in Montreal, Canada. After this event Bret Hart left the company and went to WCW, leaving fans of WWF at a loss for words.
The rebirth of the WWF began with the introduction of D-X and a more spicer show. Being bad was a good thing as Cyna, Triple H and Shawn Michael, the members of D-Generation X (D-X) raised havoc in the WWF. No one knew what to expect on a weekly basis. “Stone Cold” Steve Austin‘s “Hell Yeah, take no prisoner” 3:16 attitude. The Rock and The Undertaker continued in programs that energized the fans. This became known as the Attitude Era.
In January 1998, the WWF and its head writer Vince Russo started writing and broadcasting more violence, swearing, and more edgy angles in its attempt to compete with WCW. The Rock and Mick Foley were repackaged and competed in main event matches, whether in singles or as a tag team matches. It was now mainstream to talk about WWF on Tuesday mornings as skits were funny and wrestling was intense. Who could forget D-X taking on WCW in Norfolk, Va.? How about the Rock and Sock connection? Monday Night Raw even went back to live broadcasting on the USA network. It was during this time that Vince McMahon played a more on-air role on Monday Night Raw. His feud with Austin was classic. Ratings for Raw started to rise as the rivalry with Monday Night Nitro heated up.
The coop for WWF was when Dean Malenko, Perry Saturn, Eddie Guerrero and Chris Benoit made a surprise appearance on Raw after leaving WCW. The faction was called the Radicalz and it sent shockwaves throughout the wrestling world. Another WCW wrestler, Chris Jericho, fooled fans of WWF with his famous encrypted codes, which led to the creation of Y2J for Jericho. The evolution of more brutal matches with different stipulations were used to increase viewership, mainly Hell in a Cell and an Inferno match. WWF took over the ratings war against WCW, dominating them on a week-to-week basis.
As ratings rose and WWF was becoming popular again, WWF made its return to regular television with the introduction of SmackDown on UPN, a new struggling network. Also Titan Sports was renamed World Wrestling Federation Entertainment and became a publicity traded company.
Monday Night Raw, riding on a wave of successes, left the USA network for TNN. This was a 5 year deal for more money than USA network was willing to pay. While it was a success in raising revenue for the company, it was hard to say if this was a smart move in the long run.
The year 2001 saw the introduction of the XFL on NBC. While ratings were good in the first several weeks, but then interest in the league fell and it lasted only for the year. One of the XFL ratings was the lowest primetime show in the history of Television.
The new giant of wrestling, WWF, acquired its rival, WCW when Ted Turner’s power was reduced in a merger between Time Warner and AOL. The new company AOL Time Warner now owned WCW, but wished to sell it off. For a while Eric Bischoff tried to buy WCW but to no avail. In March 2001, WWF Entertainment, Inc. acquired World Championship Wrestling, Inc. from AOL Time Warner for a number reported to be around $7 million. With this purchase, WWF was now the largest wrestling promotion in the world, and the only one in North America with mainstream exposure. This lasted until Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (TNA) was created in 2002.
In 2002, World Wrestling Federation changed its name to World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE), after a law suit was settle between WWF and World Wildlife Fund, which also used the initials WWF. It had to deal with Titan Sports violating an agreement which limited the amount of use the wrestling logo could be used overseas. With the new change in their name became a new slogan “Get The ‘F’ Out.” This slogan was only used for a short time.
Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW) was purchased by WWE in mid-2003 and in 2006 on the SCI-FI network, a watered down version of the classic company appeared.
Originally, World Wrestling Entertainment business initially focused on professional wrestling, a simulated sport that consists of wrestling with acting and theater. Today, it is currently the largest professional wrestling promotion in the world. The WWE holds a significant portion of the visual history of professional wrestling with its extensive library of videos from the acquisition of other wrestling organizations (WCW, AWA, ECW, Georgia Championship Wrestling, etc). The WWE is now into the movie, DVD and music business. WWE music is a popular sell as well as the reselling of wrestling pay-per-views on DVD. Also popular is documentary DVD’s on a wide range of topics, and wrestlers.
Pictures by: WWE Logo - clickecart.com
Here we are again; mid week, and time to spend a bit of time with deep thoughts.
As I paddle into my blog...I figured I would start shallow before heading into deeper water. Do you like fishing?
Here are a couple of really nice bass...
Larry the Cable Guy is providing interesting television on the History channel. Tonight I learned that mules are the offspring of a jack and a female horse. I watched the jack breed the horse while Larry watched and played the guitar. When does baseball season start?
Speaking of baseball...
As everyone knows by now, spring training is in full swing. On Tuesday, Josh Beckett's training session was cut short by an errant baseball. Batting-practice instructor Ino Guerrero, using a fungo bat, hit a ball back toward the infield instead of throwing it. Perhaps Guerrero should leave the fungo hitting to someone else as his ball landed on the temple of Josh Beckett. Beckett managed to walk off the field, but was sent home with mild concussion symptoms. No word if Guerrero is still wielding a fungo bat, but if I were Ino...I might pack a bag; just in case. Several Red Sox fans were overheard saying that maybe Beckett will have amnesia and forget how he pitched last year.
This is the 2012 Olympic logo for the London summer games.
"Words like "dynamic," "modern" and "inclusive" have been used by the head of the International Olympic Committee, and organizers of the London Games to describe the ideas behind the branding logo." I have a word for the proposed logo...crap. This magenta and yellow jigsaw puzzle like mess has drawn much criticism in London and abroad. Iran has threatened to boycott the summer games in London saying that the logo is racist. This logo apparently resembles Zion to some in Iran. Really? Maybe if you turn your head and close one eye? I was really surprised at the response by Iran, as I did not even know that they had Olympic athletes. London did not respond directly to the criticism, but this song was heard in the background:
As all of you know, I am a Texas fan. This past week has been a tough stretch for Texas basketball as they have lost three games in a row. I watched the Texas-Kansas State game last night and although I was disappointed to see Texas lose, I was reminded how much I like watching Frank Martin coach. Kansas State was predicted to win the Big 12 this year, but until recently have not played to their abilities. This past week, K State has defeated Kansas and Texas. They will probably be an 8 seed or so, but I promise you that they will not be a welcomed matchup for any team in the tournament. So, as a tribute to Martin...here are a few choice photos of the coach in action:
A friend of mine compared Martin's eyes to the shark in Jaws...
I am not sure if you heard about the judge's (Doty) decision today, but this is a game changer for the NFL owners. Here is a write up of the story:
The NFL downplayed Doty’s ruling, which will either bar owners from getting advanced payments on the TV deals or award financial damages to the players because the league failed to properly represent the players’ interest, but there is little question that the owners are in a much more precarious position.
“The rules just changed,” one union source said Tuesday night.
The owners feeling the most heat are the ones who recently built new stadiums with large portions of their own money or through private financing. That list includes the Dallas Cowboys’ Jerry Jones, the New England Patriots’ Bob Kraft, the New York Jets’ Woody Johnson and the New York Giants’ John Mara and Steve Tisch.
“The negotiations just got to a more level playing field right now,” the source said. “Paying the debt on those stadiums just got a lot harder for those guys.”
Hmmm...very interesting indeed...
I think that all of us have seen injustices in sporting events. We saw a perfect game improperly ruined last year on the last out of the game. I think all of us would agree that this missed call was human error. How would you feel if the call was blown on purpose. I have little time for officials that think that they are more important than the athletic contest. I read this article by Jason Cole and it really burned me up...see if you agree:
When is a state champion interviewed as the best in her sport, only to learn afterward that she's not the champ after all? Only when a bizarre swimming disqualification is registered after post-event television interviews are already recorded in the state of Nebraska.
According to the Omaha World-Herald and other sources, Omaha (Neb.) Gross High swimmer Katie Ditter, on the left in the photo at right, captured the 100-yard breaststroke title at the state championship meet with a time of 1 minute, 6.84 seconds. She marked the victory exactly as you'd expect, with wild celebratory hugs with teammates and a brief live television interview filmed as she exited the pool.
Yet, when Ditter moved toward the medal stand, she learned belatedly that she wouldn't be receiving anything at all, with her coach informed via a rude, cross-pool shout that she had been disqualified for a stroke violation. The story could have ended there, but it actually got much worse for Ditter, who was forced to suffer the very public humiliation of a disqualification only after the race's sixth-place finisher was announced as the fifth-place winner, with the other place-earners subsequently bumped up a place each as a result.
"I grabbed her arms and told her what had happened," Ralston/Gross High assistant coach Andy Cunningham told the World-Herald. "She was in shock and didn't realize what was going on."
What made the disqualification even more shocking was the judge who ordered it. Meet official Arnie Ban lodged the stroke violation but was not actually listed as a stroke judge in the program for the state meet. Rather, Ban was allegedly a relay takeoff judge alone.
That distinction should have put disqualifying swimmers on the basis of an illegal stroke beyond his purview, which is precisely the point that Ralston/Gross coach Docker Hartfield made to the meet's referee, Terry Seymour.
Yet Seymour refused to convene the meet's protest committee to hear Hartfield's appeal against his swimmer's disqualification, ensuring that the post-Ditter disqualification results would stand as final.
That decision was met with significant contempt by both Ditter and Hartfield, who disagreed with both the decision and the manner in which it was delivered to he and his swimmer.
"I thought the way the rule infraction was delivered to myself and the athlete was uncalled for," Hartfield said. "There was yelling and screaming behind the blocks and that wasn't the way it was supposed to be done. I wasn't handed a disqualification sheet, it was yelled at me."
That all I have for today. I will leave a bit of Jack Handey to chew on through the rest of the week:
"If you are a happy employee does that make you 'gruntled' " ?
"If a cop pulls you over for speeding and comes over and asks you how fast you were going, a good thing to say is 'I dunno, i was speeding the whole time.' "
Thanks for stopping by and thanks for any comments...
I've recently been reminded as to why I hate the internet so much: I got a virus. My pc is still recovering. I realise I have free time and like to kill it online, but who are these lonely bastards who need to kill time by killing my PC? These guys need hugs or some Robocop justice.
For those of you who haven't heard, upwards of $300,000 has been raised for a Robocop statue to be created and placed in downtown Detroit. Mayor Dave Bing has said he doesn't want a Robocop statue as it reenforces negative stereotypes about the city. After the mayor turned the idea down, the web came together to collect donations. They are still taking donations.
Now if only we could do this for our schools, or police, or fire, or EMS, or garabage collection, or house demolition......
At least we have this guy's support.
Now, on to more problems in the D: the Pistons. Fan82 asked yesterday what my thoughts were on this. Well, I have to say that the players revolting against the coach is the dumbest thing I've heard. You guys are just not playing well, certainly not the kind of ball I've been used to. It's like I time warped back to the mid 90's. All they need are those horrible teal and wine jerseys. Good to see the boys Goin to Work. Looks like they're DETermined to make us like even more piss poor.
Now, some of the guys had injuries and Ben Wallace had a brother who was deathly ill and who did pass. The one guy who's caught the brunt of the anger is Rip Hamilton. Rip Hamilton. Who is hurt. Who is getting up in years and seems to be borowing a page from AI. Rip has made no secret that he dislikes the coach. He hasn't been happy with his playing time, but we have younger guys and let's face it, we've been looking to trade the guy. There's also news that Rip has vetoed trades.
Now, I don't know what makes Rip think he can pull these kind of moves. He's working on past glories. Last season even showed Detroit fans that Chauncey was the heart and soul of the team. It's terrible to think that Rip has any sway over the lockerroom. I'd like to think that if Big Ben was there he'd put a stop to it.
Anyways, a lot of the younger players have apologized. Rip and Keuster have been out in the spotlight shooting around together, tryin to make it look like things are fine. We all know there's a fire. You don't need to hide the smoke.
The worst part is that fans here are actually siding with the players. They say the coach sucks. Maybe. I don't see many of our guys lighting it up, much less Rip.
What makes this even worse for the game/for the league is that all of this is going on just before a contract negotiation. This makes the players look even worse. I have to admit that I can't really root for either side. The players look terrible. Everyone knows that they run the league. They can fire coaches. The owners. You know they have money, even if you see nothing but empty seats at the games. The point is, I don't think the league sees this as serious enough. This just goes to show how much trouble the NBA is really in.
I can say one good thing about the league: Scottie Pippen. I was reminded why I liked the guy so much as a kid last week.
Well, that's all for this week. Looks like the NFL is making cuts. Derrick Dockery got released. Here's hoping the Lions are paying attention. As always, I leave you with your word of the week.
To have your entry in an office pool or bracket, particularly for the NCAA men's basketball tournament, become worthless because one of your teams lost much earlier than anticipated.
That Georgetown game completely bracketfucked me. I had them winning the whole tournament, so I have no chance of winning money now.
Greetings from the Hoodwood where no one knows or cares who won an Oscar. I have to warn you that this is another light column, but the Spec Sheet helps carry the weight
Though its worthy of a head slap (that one is later) I’m still wondering why Miguel Cabrera seems to be getting a free pass on his actions. He has now been twice been in trouble with the law in conjunction with drinking. Now Im no prude, I like my Crown Royal on the weekend, but you can be damn sure that I’m not getting behind the wheel of any vehicle, Im not even playing Need For Speed on the PS3. But it seems that Cabrera can get away with a prepared apology. Im all for forgiveness, but Im still thinking that a week off to evaluate his condition then letting him back to play is a bit lenient. Here hoping that Cabrera can get the help he needs to get the drinking under control.
The Sabres are being rattled louder
The drop dead date is rapidly approaching, and the NFL owners are sitting back with the “we mean it” look on their faces while the NFLPA considers decertification. The players and coaches and fans all sit back and wonder whats gonna happen now. The clock is ticking toward March 4th, and this time next week there maybe no football to really speak of till college kicks off.
To UCLA junior guard Tyler Trapani, who scored the last basket at Pauley Pavilion before the venerable building is shutdown for a year for major renovations. Whats the big hullabaloo about who scored the last basket? Tripani is the great-grandson of the late legendary coach John Wooden who coached the Bruins for 27 years and the first 11 in Pauley. No disrespect to Ed Pauley who the arena was named after but that arena should be called Wooden Arena at Pauley Court.
To LeBron James who seems to want to be the big shot but cant make the game winners. He took a questionable and rushed three late in a tight game against the Bulls that was so far off you would have thought I shot it. Then he bricked a three pointer that would have tied the game against the new look Knicks. As much as your humble scribe despises the bray wonk that is Skip Bayless, I’m thinking that he is right when he rails on James as not a clutch time player. Give me Kobe with the game on the line.
The First Spec of March!!!
Today is the first day of March and there is are but 13 short days until the 68 teams are revealed in the NCAA mens field. No disrespect at all to Christmas, but this is the most wonderful time of the year. At least it is for me, the games are wall to wall and the stakes are the highest. Many celebrate the Final Four, but it’s the road to the National Semifinals and Finals this time heading to Houston that I enjoy. The smaller conferences start their tourneys and I still have their projected winners at the bottom of the sheet. Classes have changed to. There are three now in most but not all the conferences, Good To Go teams are all but assured of going its just a matter of where the go what their seeding is and who they will play. Getting Close teams are just that, close but an ill timed loss may do serious damage to their seeding or even their bid chances. Teams that need a miracle like winning more than three games in their respective conference tournaments are listed as such. Let the true madness begin.
Good To Go: Duke, North Carolina, Va. Tech, Florida State
Getting Close: Maryland
Miracle Needed: Clemson
Skinny on the ACC: The Hokies won an emotional game on Saturday and barring a swan dive are pretty much set. The Dukies had the look of a team that wasn’t expecting a tune-up for the ACC tourney but got the fight taken to them. Clemson wishes that the Hokies hadn’t stolen their chance for an upset, the Tigers are lacking a signature win but it’s a little too much to ask the Tigers to win at Cameron on their senior day. The Heels and Noles haven’t done anything to hurt themselves and the Terps are just lacking a real big win.
Key Game: North Carolina at Florida State Wednesday 7p (ESPN) The Heels better not look past a good Noles team to their showdown with Duke
Projected Bids: 5
Good To Go: Xavier, Temple
Getting Close: Richmond
Miracle Needed: Duquesne
The A-10 Spec is: X is rounding into postseason nicely and someone must have been listening to me as they are now a ranked team, as is Temple. Richmond is hanging on the edge and is getting really hard to ignore with 22 wins but may need to win out and get deep into the A-10 tourney, though I have them going…for now
Key Game: Charlotte at Xavier Wed 7p The Muskies can wrap up the #1 seed in the A-10 tourney with a home win.
Good To Go: Pitt, UConn, Louisville, Villanova, Syracuse, Georgetown, Notre Dame, Cincy, St. John’s
Getting Close: West Virginia, Marquette
Big East Skinny: No real change here, I’m still not real sold on Marquette in spite of their solid road win at UConn. The teams that are good to go are just that. I still say the cutoff line is 10 teams
Key Game: UConn at West Virginia Wednesday 7p The Mountaineers are fast running out of time and opportunities to impress the selection committee short of the BEast tourney next week.
Projected Bids: 10
Good To Go: Ohio State, Purdue, Wisconsin
Getting Close: Penn State.
Miracle Needed: Michigan, Michigan St. Illinois, Minnesota
The word on the Big Ten is: I still say only three teams should come out of this conference and until someone knocks off any off these three top teams. But you know the honks and wonks say that this is a tough conference and that Sparty and the Ilini should get a pass. Why? So a mid-major can expose them on a national stage and make Billy Packer look even more stupid?
Key Game: Illinois at Purdue Tonight 7p. The Illini can at least get close if they knock off the Boilers
Projected Bids: 4
Good To Go: Kansas, Texas, Mizzou, Texas A&M
Getting Close: Baylor, Kansas State
Miracle Needed: Nebraska, Colorado
Skinny from the heartland: Baylor and K-State may have saved their tourney chances with massive wins. Texas is rapidly blowing its high seed chances with inexcusable losses, witness the fall from ahead loss to a Colorado team that is trying to make a desperate run. The Huskers are fading fast and the memory of the win over Texas is losing its luster
Key Game: Texas A&M at Kansas Wednesday 9p The Aggies could solidify their seeding by knocking off the Jayhawks at Allen…on Senior Night. Good Luck.
Projected Bids: 6
Good To Go: Memphis
Miracle Needed: Tulsa, UTEP, Southern Methodist, Southern Miss, UAB
Oh Say can You C-USA Spec: I don’t give a crap what the so-called experts are saying about Memphis being one of the first four out, I think that they are better than the middling type major teams that think they are a team that is supposed get a berth on name alone.
Key Game: Memphis at UTEP Saturday 3p In a tightly packed C-USA this game is critical for conference placement ahead of the C-USA tourney
Projected Bids: 2
Good To Go: George Mason, Old Dominion
Getting Close: VCU, Hofstra
Colonial Spec: The Patriots are the top seed and I think are close to being bulletproof aside from getting housed in the first round
Key Game: Drexel vs Towson Saturday 7p Just missing a bye, the Dragons are still good but they overlook cellar dweller Towson at their own risk.
Virginia 529 Colonial Athletic Association Conference Championship. Mar 4-7 Richmond Coliseum; Richmond, VA
Projected Bids: 3
Good To Go: Butler
Getting Close: Milwaukee
Miracles Needed: Valpo, Cleveland State, Wright State
Spec on the Horizon: This conference is as about as wild as they come, Milwaukee is the top seed from tie breakers, Butler garners a first round bye and both play at home as long as they are in. The poor Vikings finish tied for the regular season crown and have to win four games in four days in as many as three venues. Valpo and Wright State face the same fate.
Key Game: Ill-Chicago at Cleveland State Tonight 7p The Vikings had better not mope about not getting a first round bye. The Flames are not a team to take lightly
Horizon League Championship Mar 1-8 First Round on Campus Sites higher seed hosting, 2nd & 3rd rounds at US Cellular Arena, Milwaukee.
Projected Bids: 2
Good To Go: Missouri State, Wichita State
Miracle Needed: Northern Iowa, Indiana State
Missouri Valley Skinny: The Bears won the MVC outright with the win over the Shockers and hold the top seed. Provided both the Bears and Shockers get to the “Arch Madness” finale next Sunday, I say they both are deserving. The Panthers and Sycamores need to get to the MVC final at least to get any real consideration now.
Key Game: Northern Iowa vs Creighton Fri 2:35p If the Panthers have any hopes of getting to the dance they must win out and they get a dangerous draw in a solid Blue Jay squad.
State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Championship Mar 3-6 Scottrade Center, St. Louis
Projected Bids: 2
Good To Go: BYU, San Diego State
Getting Close: UNLV, Colorado State
Spec from the Mountains: The Cougars are the class of the MWC and have real designs on a #1 seed. Do they deserve it? I think that they do, and despite 2 losses to the same teams by the same margin the Aztecs should be anywhere from a 2 to 4 seed. The Rebels aren’t hurting at all but the Rams have all but collapsed with an ill-timed 3 game skid and a shameful loss to Air Force, they are needing to get at the very least to the MWC if not win the whole thing to get a serious bid look.
Key Game: New Mexico at BYU Wednesday 10p The Cougars can’t coast even with the MWC lead. The Lobos are the only MWC they havent beaten.
Good To Go: UCLA, Arizona
Getting Close:, Washington,
Miracle Needed: USC, Washington State
Skinny from the Left Coast: UCLA housed Arizona something fierce on Saturday and have all but assured themselves of a dance ticket. The Wildcats may have cost themselves a 2 or 3 seed with a disastrous trip in LA. Washington is sitting on the fence but still may need at least one or two more wins between now and selection Sunday. The Trojans and Cougars are still needing deep deep runs before they can really get into the conversation.
Key Game: UCLA at Washington Thursday 9p The Huskies need a big win ahead of the Pac-10 tourney, beating the high flying Bruins would be huge.
Projected Bids: 3
Good To Go: UK, Vanderbilt, Florida, Alabama
Miracle Needed: Georgia, Tennessee
Word is Down South: UK sits smugly after beating Florida at Rupp. Vandy and Bama are pretty safe. Don’t you believe the hype about the Crimson Tide not being a tourney worthy team. What I don’t get is why the so called experts cant put Bama in but have no problems putting in Tennessee in. Neither they nor Georgia are anywhere close to earning a berth and need to string together a series of wins over the SEC elite to get close.
Key Game: Alabama at Florida Tonight 7p The respective divisional leaders meet in what some think could be a SEC title game preview.
Projected Bids: 5
Good To Go: Gonzaga
Miracle Needed Saint Mary’s
West Coast Spec: It could be a one bid league, but for now but Ive got two teams in and its the Bulldogs bid to lose. The Gaels have really sputtered down the stretch and that’s a shame. It gives the selection committee a real excuse to keep this league a one bid. But the weird way the WCC tourney bracket is set up, you are almost guaranteed a Gaels-Bulldogs showdown for the title and automatic bid
Zappos.com West Coast Conference Tournament Mar 4-7 Orleans Arena, Las Vegas
There are others in the mix to be sure. The champions from the following conferences get an automatic bid projected winners in parentheses: Amer. East (Vermont), Atlantic Sun (Belmont), Big Sky (Montana), Big South (Coastal Carolina), Big West (Long Beach), Ivy (Princeton), MAC (Kent), MAAC (Rider), MEAC (Bethune-Cookman), Northeast (Long Island), Ohio Valley (Morehead State), Patriot (Bucknell), Southland (S.F. Austin), Southern (Charleston), Summit (Oakland), Sun Belt (Florida Atlantic) and SWAC (Jackson State) WAC (Utah State) That adds up to 68 teams.
Remember there is almost two weeks before Selection Sunday, this list can change quickly and of course we haven't even brought up the possibility of upsets. But those never happen, right?
Next Spec on Friday
As I usually do this time of the year, this column is dedicated to the loving memory of my Grandmother Lorene Hare, who has been gone 18 years on the 4th, but is never too far from my thoughts. I see her in both my daughters.
Until Next Post Fellow Sports Fans!
Can't believe it's March already. Pretty soon, we'll be talking about St. Patrick's Day, but in the meantime, I guess I'll have to get a few rants outta the way...
The Cardinals already lost Nick Punto until May at the earliest due to a hernia, and the very next day they lose Adam Wainwright to Tommy John Surgery? Sucks to be Cardinal fan right now, but nobody should make the mistake of thinking that St. Louis is just gonna allow Cincinnati to run away with the NL Central.
Hey Red Sox nation, can somebody explain to me why you would move Youkilis to third base?
Brian Wilson, are you effing crazy? You got flown from Phoenix to LA (during spring training) to attend a private showing of “Major League” at Charlie Sheen’s house? That dude is loony as hell.
The Cubs have already said that Ryan Dempster will be their starting pitcher on opening day over Carlos Zambrano and Matt Garza? Didn’t we just start Spring Training?
Did I read that right, Tony Gwynn’s son plays for the Dodgers? Mr. Padres’ son playing for the Dodgers is baseball blasphemy! I’m glad to hear that Daddy Gwynn is doing much better.
NBA. Watching the Court Jester continue to be unable to close out games late for the Heat never sucks, but having to watch the Knicks beat the Heat in Miami was a nightmare. Why? Because how many times to we have to see Spike Lee on coming out of his seat? It’s just as stupid as Jack Nicholson. Spike, get back to work and make a movie worth seeing and stop making a damn fool of yourself. And as for the Jester, let Wade close out the games.
Denver fans chanting "Who is 'Melo" was priceless...
There was an article about the San Antonio Spurs on Wednesday, an article which was great.
The Spurs are a throwback team. Throwback to a time when teams played as a team, not one on one with a stagnant offense like one on one while the four other players stand on the other side of the court and watch.
Hey IHM and AFD, what was with the Pistons of all teams boycotting a practice on Friday? Damn if these players aren’t straight up doing everything they can to show the owners whose boss…
NHL. Here come the Sharks, winners of six in a row and now in first place in the Pacific. With a homestand now up, this isn’t the time to take the foot off the pedal boys. This week its home for Colorado, Detroit, and Dallas – not exactly easy.
Question for Edmonton Oilers - how the hell are you ever trading with the LA Kings? They took Gretzky away from you and you want to trade with these d-bags? You should never have done that, and I don't care if its been 20 or so years ago. Hell, the Sawx don't trade with the Cranks, do they?
You gotta love the NHL. We’ve seen this all week, but it’s still funny to me:
College Basketball. CalTech snapped its 310 game losing streak Wednesday Night beating Occidental by one point, 46-45. They hadn’t won a game since 1985!!! This is a school of 900 who don’t give out athletic scholarships. Props to them.
Hey Duke, are you tired of this happening to you? I'm not. How many times did Virginia Tech cherry pick you Saturday Night? But Hokie fan, the “Whose your Daddy” chant with Seth Curry’s Dad (Dell Curry, the #1 scorer in Va Tech history) was bad form. Virginia Tech should get in to the dance this year – don’t screw it up NCAA.
Damn Doug, I was rooting for the Aztecs Saturday, but BYU hit for 14 threes? That’s where you gotta tip your hat and say I’d rather get beat by long ass threes then killed in the paint. Regardless, the fans showed up big, and that’s saying something down in San Diego!
Speaking of Saturday, hey Texas, what the hell was the second half against COLORADO?
Mustang Basketball. While the boys had a rough season, the girls ended up ranked #7 in the 16 team divisional playoffs. They were the section runner-ups at Arco Arena last year and won their first round game easily against the #10 team 58-24. Unfortunately Thursday Night, they had to travel to the #2 ranked teams house and lost 50-32. I know the girls are disappointed, but they had a very big season since losing the stars to graduation last year.
NFL – or bashing Cam Newton. One week before the NFL Scouting Combine, Cam Newton busts out this gem of a comment - "I see myself not only as a football player, but an entertainer and icon,”. Are you effing kidding me? I’ll give him Football Player, but entertainer and icon? The word “icon” will be dealt with in a locker room come July and August, but it’s the word “entertainer” that has me convinced that this guy isn’t 100% committed to Football. Hey Buffalo and Cincinnati, I would say to you both – DON’T DRAFT THIS GUY, he will only hurt you. Didn’t you guys already deal with Terell Owens?
Speaking of the NFL’s “Icon”, right on cue at the combine we’re starting to hear about Cam Newton to the Cowboys, even pics of him wearing the ballcap and holding the jersey. Newton and King Jerrah deserve each other. When will Jerry Jones ever learn? Yet another diva on a team full of ‘em? Where would you play this guy? Second string QB and run Kitna out of town? Yeah that makes sense, the only QB to get that offense moving.
Oh yeah, one more point, Cam Newton couldn’t hit a WR on a short pattern to save his life, and that was without blockers and no rushers in his face. Hey Cowboy fan, enjoy!!!
New Orleans let go of Jeremy Shockey, and the Foreskins bought out Clinton Portis. Not sure what to think about that, although you might be getting an idea of the near future for all teams in the NFL who wonder about the CBA and ongoing negotiations. Get rid of some of the mid-level players until they figure out how the cap will work, I guess.
“I guarantee we’ll win it this year.” – Rex Ryan. Rex, I love the smack, but you’re jerking with the karma and the patience of the football gods.
College Football. I’m very happy to say that Doug Williams is going back to be the Head Coach at Grambling. He was very successful there (35-5).
Wrestling. Hey TNA, you still suck. How 'bout this for an idea, bring Samoa Joe back up to main eventer status and have him kick the shit out of Ric Flair. That might be something to put you dickheads into the right direction.
Rant of the Week – Sacramento Kings. These fucking “fans” here infuriate me. It took that criminal David Stern telling the media during all star weekend that the owners are negotiating with Anaheim to move the Kings down there for fans to finally take what I said two years ago serious. Lo and behold, these fair weather fans got scared and wanted to do everything they could to prove to those billionaire douche bag Maloofs that they should keep the team here. Look assholes, the team can’t even fill the bottom bowl of Arco Arena with you supposed “fans”, now you schmucks get scared and fill Arco Arena for the first time in years in order to prove “you love your team”? As Beeze says, fuck you all! Go back to LA or the SF Bay Area, you water thieving criminal rejects and stop trying to turn my small city into another fucked up version of the Bay Area or Hollyweird.
As for the Kings, feel free to close out a game in the 4th when you have a lead. I swear the next time you to that, it’ll be the first time you do it.
Before I go… It was reported that our friendly neighborhood trailer trash Tonya Harding had a baby at age 40 recently. Let us all hope this woman has gotten herself straight because we don’t need another spawn of trailer park, that’s for sure.
Peace and ranting forever.