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Slapshots and Hip Checks 4/18
Category: Daily Blog 2.0
Tags: Atlanta MLS Stanley Cup P;ayoffs MLB

 

Damn near forgot to write this post then just as I nodded off I jumped up and said to myself...ahh fuck, it's Thursday and I need to write a post...now what, cuz I got nothin'!! 

Let's see what I can rant about...MLB players, let's start with these guys. I don't know about any of the other Gabber's in fantasy baseball, but my two teams (I have one in Jeff's league too) are walking MASH units, and this is exactly how my teams started last season too. Mark Texiera...this frickin' douche bag lands right back where he was last year about his time...the DL. And how much are the Spankees paying this Workman's Comp claim? He's obviously been schooled well in this organization from their previous losers that were paid astro-bucks only to  hang out at practice or sit in the clubhouse to watch games. Does Carl Pavano ring a bell? Or A-Roid? Both of these guys were paid huge ducats and both found their way to the DL for tons of missed games. So what is it with baseball players and their inability to be ready for the season? I mean baseball isn't a contact sport, there's no one being checked into boards, no one getting a slap shot to the testes, there's no tackling, so what's the deal? Is spring training too short? Do most of these guys do nothing in the offseason? It has to have something to do with not being properly prepared...how else do you explain all these DL's and day to days for hamstrings, pulled muscles etc? I would think this topic has come up within clubs who experience these issues...but is it on the team or the player to be ready for the start of the season? Burning questions, but it's not hard to notice looking around the leagues I'm in that I'm  not the only one dealing with it. Talk amongst yourselves...discuss. 

 

The NHL playoffs are in round 1, Boston faces off against Detroit in Boston for game one tomorrow night and I'm all fired up about it. No, not worried about the season series between the two, two of those four games were decided by one point, Boston won one and had a lousy game against the Wings at the start of the season...this is the playoffs, it's a whole new season and what happened over the last 82 games was just a precursor to get to season two. Again, if you've never spent any time watching playoff hockey you're really missing the very best the game has to offer...you're not going to see better games, heated competition and guys playing until their legs fall off to win that double OT like you would in any other sport. Certainly not the NBA...that's for sure. Check it out, you won't be disappointed!

Yesterday, here in Atlanta it was announced that an MLS team would begin playing games here in 2017...Arthur Blank is behind this. Now I have nothing against AB...I really don't, but this is a bit short-sighted on his part. In my seven years here I'm still trying to find how the existing teams are marketed...I really mean that. Go to NY or LA or even Boston, you see billboards galore, players in local TV commercials, everyone dressed in their gear, all that, but not here. First, this is college football country before anything else, then it's probably NASCAR and pro football, the Braves, even with their non-stop TV coverage can't sellout, and the Hawks...it's basketball, who cares? That's why I don't understand the logic to add a team from yet another sport after hockey failed miserably - TWICE, the Braves lacked any support from the city of Atlanta to build a new stadium (keep in mind, the one they're in now was built all the way back in 1996 for the Olympics, so it's only natural that place would be in dire need of replacement) so they're building in Cobb County/Marietta and they'll be opening for the 2017 season. They can't keep a hockey team, they're moving the MLB team out of town and it appears Blank's logic seems to be something has to replace what's left. Sorry Arthur, it's not going to work and this team will be heading for (if you ask DVT) Winnipeg right behind the Thrashers/Jets. If the people of Atlanta don't understand hockey and this is a football town what makes him think soccer has any chance at all? Really not seeing it, and from what I'm hearing so far it's got as much support as the Ferris Wheel they built downtown, (Arthur Blank was a huge advocate for this too) ... yeah, a fuckin' Ferris Wheel. Are you all getting that this town seems to put the cart before the horse? It's not like the roads didn't need repair, the highways around Atlanta aren't too fucked up and money couldn't be spent to rectify what amounts to a ride along the gauntlet each trip to the city, but we got a Ferris Wheel and you too can ride it for $25 for 15 minutes after you pay $20 across the street to park. Maybe that's where all the money is coming from to support the Falcons new stadium and this MLS team that has no business being here. Keep in mind, you heard it here first...this team... GONE by 2020. 

Have a great weekend! 

Talking Sports
Category: Daily Blog 2.0
Tags: MLB NHL Network

There has been a few interesting things going in the world of Major League Baseball. I have seen a few interesting articles , if nothing else it will make you think a little about the state of the game and that perhaps in buds World everything isn’t coming roses.

The first is an Unnamed source as MLB Executive from Buster Olney’s paid blog according to Fox Sports April 7th  I’ll take with a grain of salt because a source or the executive isn’t listed. He suggests to move the games to 7 innings(hold your Baseball purist thoughts). The mystery man’s reasoning makes a lot of sense. The younger audience wants things faster and quicker games would average around 2 and half hours instead of 3 plus. IT also would cut down injuries. There are a lot more injuries. Basically the landscaping is charging is what he is saying. The reality is Major League Baseball is experiencing great numbers at the gate is it really charging or is the product itself bringing in better  numbers?

According to MLB Press Release h 2013 was the 6th best year for attendance in the history of baseball and the numbers over the past decade have been amongst the highest in history. Maybe as much as things change they don’t.

The other article is about how fans are being hurt over Blackout restrictions by MLB According to Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports   Passan says that because of the cash to regional networks some folks living in areas where there is multiple team blackouts are getting screwed. Folks living in Buffalo, Arkansas, Iowa, and even Las Vegas are restricted to blackouts and can’t watch games. Baseball has no interest in fixing mainly due to the huge amount of cash regional sports networks are throwing at teams There is a lawsuit pending in federal court in the Southern District of New York. Baseball and Direct TV and others are  asking for a dismissal the judge turned the motion down. It’s likely that baseball will try to use it’s anti trust exemption. Baseball is arguing every  game is available on Direct TV. That is where the blackouts happen in Vegas. California teams and Arizona all those games are subject to blackouts in Las Vegas. As others are in Buffalo like Blue Jays, Yankees and Mets I’m assuming. Baseball will bring out it’s trump card (Can you Guess What It is?) Ding, Ding,Ding You got it the Anti Trust exemption.

Baseball can easily fix this open up some of the blackouts in these areas and let the fnas choose. The argument that everything is available on Direct TV doesn’t fly especially at the monthly cost of $30 a month just for the package that blackouts out games in these areas. Keep an eye on this one it’s going to be interesting.

Instant Replay has been over whelming successful so far the Red Sox got screwed on two  challenges that the ruling on the field was overturned and the replay was wrong. I guess there are some bugs in the system. They brought a system in that wasn’t effectively tested. I heard one argument from a reporter saying there isn’t enough cameras at exhibition games and not enough games are televised / I guess maybe he doesn’t get MLB Network with two of those meaningless games were on everyday. He said they don’t use enough cameras in those games so bring in more and test the damn thing. It’s here to stay but many people say and I think I’m among them think this will change the game and outcomes. Basically, they want to take the human factor away. We all excepted the human error of an umpire for many years as matter fact it was entertaining watching a guy like Earl Weaver state his case.right wrong or in different..

LIL Warriors Report

Laser laced them up Saturday Night and scored a goal in a non contact coaches vs graduating Bantam game. He scored from the top of the slot.

NHL Playoffs

Let the games begin it’s the best Hockey all year.

Last Night there were three games to start the second season.

Ducks beat the Stars

Canadiens beat Lighting

Penguins beat the Blue Jackets

There are some excellent first round matchups Chicago and St Louis should go 7,Philadelphia and the Rangers should be a blood bath, LA and San Jose another great matchup and of course the one I look forward to is Boston-Detroit enjoy the games.

Thursday's Thoughts - 4/17/14
Category: FEATURED

Hi guys, it's your Uncle B.O.B. filling in for Ole Harry this week while he tends to something.  Before I go any further, I want to wish everybody a Happy Easter.  May you enjoy your day however you choose to celebrate, be it church, family, BBQ, formal dinner, or just sitting watching Baseball, NASCAR, or the NBA/NHL playoffs on the recliner in the Man Cave.  It's definitely one heckuva sports weekend that's for sure.

Today, I want to touch on all four of the major sports.

NBA.  Thankfully the sham of a regular season is over.  A regular season that had teams purposely fielding the worst possible team they can in order to gamble on ping pong balls in May.  So you intentionally piss off your fans in the hopes that a set of ping pong balls in a closed off back room go your way?

I want to say good job to the Phoenix Suns who had a surprisingly strong season, and just missed out on the playoffs.  47 wins (six games over .500) and they can’t get into the playoffs?  That’s a damn shame, and shame on the NBA.  Here’s the rub with the Suns, they have three, possibly four first round picks in the upcoming draft.  Phoenix is on the rise (no pun intended) in the NBA.

Stephen A. Smith is absolutely right – no team who has a below .500 record in the regular season should be allowed into the dance, period end of story.  Forget conferences, it’s time to take the 16 best teams regardless and seed them accordingly, so long as they are above .500.

NBA Western Playoffs.  (1) San Antonio vs. (8) Dallas; (2) OKC vs. (7) Memphis ; (3)  Clippers vs. (6) Golden State; (4) Houston vs. (5)  Portland.  No series will be easy and I can only begin to imagine the matchups in the second round, but I’m not gonna consider anything an upset here.

One thing you should watch out for out west is that Golden State lost Andrew Bogut to a cracked rib which supposedly is dangerously close to his lung.  No idea how long he’ll be out.  That and the rumored tension with HC Mark Jackson may make Golden State the one easy out in a very tough West giving the Clippers a huge break.

Sacramento Kings.  The Kings ended the season with less than 30 wins, a small disappointment as I expected 32, but this season admittedly was a write-off season, a season for on-court evaluation and cleaning up the mess of the Maloofs.  Yes, there was frustrations including poor defense, questionable effort, constant whining to the officials, dumb ass technical, and a lack of production at the 2 and 4 spots, and a significant overpopulation at said “4”. 

But there were also some positives:  Ben McLemore is showing signs of improvement at the 2-guard spot, Ray McCallum is showing signs of being a quality backup PG, and Reggie Evans showed some solid play at the “4” late which significantly enhanced the Kings ability to rebound, and I’ll bet you didn’t know that there were three players on the Kings who averaged 20 points per game:  DeMarcus Cousins, Rudy Gay, and little Isaiah Thomas. 

The Kings are the proverbial work in progress, with aggressive ownership and management.  Don’t be surprised if you hear their name in trades come draft night and in free agency.  The rumors continue to persist that Rondo is coming to the Kings (with Gerald Wallace) for a massive package to Boston in return which includes two First Round picks, Isiah Thomas, Ben McLemore, and something else.  Hey Boston, it ain’t gonna happen.

NHL Playoffs.  This is the time of year Hockey grows on me, and in the first round I get the added attraction of San Jose vs. LA Kings in the first round.  Now come on San Jose, let’s get a NORCAL victory over a SOCAL team! 

         

MLB.  Hey Jeff, thank you.  Watching morning/afternoon Baseball in the middle of the week on MLB Network does not suck at all.  I am looking forward to this all season long. It's a solid break from Law and Order reruns.  I thoroughly enjoyed watching Oakland/Minny last week from Target Field.

Speaking of which, I absolutely love that Target Field in Minneapolis and would like nothing better than to attend a game there.  Knowing that this is my last realistic chance, and after extensive negotiating w/Mrs. B.O.B., we will be going there in mid-May for a night game the night before Jerry’s graduation, weather and logistics permitting – making a day out of it and maybe finding a “juicy lucy” and other Midwest type of food.  I had been hoping for a day game, but the schedule didn’t quite work out for that.  I hope to have some cool pics.

Tampa Bay Bucs.  Tampa has already signed 15 players in Free Agency, which is good because the Bucs only have six picks in this draft (none in the 4th round).

NFL.com says the Bucs need OL (see a pattern here yet?), CB, and QB.  QB is interesting in that they already have Josh McCown and Mike Glennon.  Would the Bucs roll the dice on a QB at #7 if Bortles, Manziel, or Bridgwater were left?  Would they go after Mettenberger or a less hyped QB in a later round?

This is where the draft tends to get really interesting because with all the FA signings down in Tampa, the scores of unsigned free agents they had last season, and now new management (including Lovie Smith as the Head Coach, who I’m not high on), nobody is going to be able to get a feel for what the Bucs are gonna do, but this media pressure for them to take a QB could be a mistake.  Work on your line. 

College Football – Michigan State 2014 schedule.  Sparty taking the Big Ten, then winning the Rose Bowl was absolutely HUGE for the credibility of the Big Ten in 2013.  No longer is this conference Ohio State’s personal playground and the rest a bunch of underachievers. 

Home:  Jacksonville State, Eastern Michigan, Wyoming, Nebraska, Michigan, Ohio State, Rutgers

Road:  Oregon, Purdue, Indiana, Maryland, Penn State

Neutral:  Big Ten Championship Game

Oregon on September 6th?  On the road?  Don’t tell me other schools couldn’t schedule games like this.    Now this is what I’m talking about and I’m hoping that in the future we see more of this.  I get Eastern Michigan, but I’m not as sold on the rest (Wyoming, Jax State?) of their OOC.  Oregon will help, but if they get through the Big Ten, will their OOC be enough to convince a new selection board for an NC Game?

Deep Thoughts 4-16-14
Category: FEATURED
Tags: Jackie Robinson Boston Marathon Draft Day Old time baseball Tommy John and today's pitchers Arnold Palmer the most important golfer

 

 

Hello and welcome to another Wednesday of deep thoughts. This week marks two very significant events. Tuesday was Jackie Robinson day and the anniversary of the bombing at last year’s Boston Marathon. MLB does a great job each year of recognizing Robinson by having each MLB player wear #42. While this is a great tribute, I have a question. On Jackie Robinson day, shouldn’t the Dodgers be playing at home? It really does seem like a slap in the face to me to not only have the Dodgers on the road…but playing at San Francisco. I am really scratching my head over this. I am also trying to understand why someone would leave two dummy backpacks at the Boston Marathon finish line. It is acts like this that make me wonder about the direction of our country. Sick…

BOB mentioned yesterday in his blog about Aldon Smith’s latest screw up. Telling TSA agents that you have a bomb is not very bright. This does not strike me as the act of a mentally stable person, but maybe he is just an idiot. Either way, I think BOB is right, Sheriff Goodell will ask Smith to take the year off. This is really a bad deal for the 49ers as their defense is not the same without him. But, I figure that this is out of the team’s hands at this point. It will be interesting to see if they cut him loose or save a spot for him.

I caught the movie Draft Day last weekend. If you like football, you will definitely like this movie. It was like a big spoonful of football. I would not say it is Costner’s best work, but it is definitely worth watching. It was interesting watching the behind the scene conversations. Given the timing of the approaching draft, it makes the current headlines rather intriguing. I saw on Tuesday that an “anonymous” NFL executive thinks that Clowney is “spoiled” and “lazy”. Teams are looking for any reason to cause a player to drop. Is this truly what this executive believes or is he trying to allow Clowney to fall into their lap? Johnny Manziel is slammed because he scores too high on the Wonderlic test. It is whispered that he may be too smart to be coachable. Vince Young was slammed because he scored too low on the test…maybe he is not smart enough to learn the playbook. It really is a game of chess. The media sucks up the words like a Hoover on steroids. I am not even sure that they realize that they are being played by the teams…either way, they are pawns. There was a time that we could believe what we read in the paper, but those times are long gone.

 

 

 

 

 

I have been reading an old book about baseball stories. I found the book at an antique store and figured for a few bucks it would be interesting to read. The stories are an assortment of short stories, poems…each one is different. There was the original story that I suppose the Field of Dreams was based upon. One very short story was about a guy that walked into a bar. A baseball game was on the small TV in the corner. An older guy sitting next to him started talking about baseball and complaining about the way games today (probably 40 years ago) are described. Lanz commented on BOB’s blog yesterday how Vin Scully used words to paint a picture of the game. That is exactly what this old guy was complaining about in this story. He missed listening to a baseball game on the radio; because those play by play guys painted that picture for their listeners…they had to. TV guys have gotten lazy. Most do not understand what it is to do a play by play. They use words like velocity instead of bringing the heat or throwing gas and location instead of nibbling around the corners. As I read this story, I realized that the old man was exactly right. I have spent those summer nights lying in my bed with my eyes closed…seeing the game through the words. I watch the game now, and don’t really listen as much to the words of the broadcast. Often, I think that I see as much or more than the guys doing the broadcast. Baseball is great today and I love being able to watch so many game on TV. But, there will always be something special about listening to a baseball game on the radio.

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

I think we have all noticed how many pitchers are MIA this year. The dreaded phrase “Tommy John” surgery has been spoken 20 times this year. I started looking around trying to find some answers. One theory is that the MLB strike zone is so tight that pitchers have given up throwing slower breaking balls and now throw a cut fastball, slider and split finger fastball. Hitters spend hours watching video now. They are much more patient at the plate because they know that the tight strike zones favor hitters. There is some potential truth to this. Fastballs are thrown with the shoulder. Curveballs are thrown with the shoulder and wrist. The harder breaking balls all stress the elbow. I can see this, but I don’t think it tells the entire story. So I went to the expert on the matter…Dr. James Andrews. Dr. Andrews believes that there are several factors that are causing the UCL (ulnar collateral ligament) to fray and eventually fail. Kids are bigger and stronger and the UCL is just not able to keep pace with how hard the young pitchers are throwing. Also, baseball has become a year round sport in many parts of the country. He believes that young pitchers are not getting a break like they used to. Instead of putting away the baseball glove and picking up a football or basketball, they simply play on. A comment on the article about Dr. Andrews was spot on. He remembers listening to 2 visiting hockey coaches from Finland. They said if you want to be one of the best 12 year old players around then play year round. But if you want to still be a good player when you are 16 or 17 then drop the game when your season is over and play other sports that interest you because eventually water seeks its level and others will catch up or your zeal for the game will be greatly diminished

My son began playing tournament baseball when he was 11. But, we limited the amount of games that the kids played. But there are others that do not. I am a firm believer that playing all sports is of great benefit for young athletes. Focusing on one sport at a young age often burns kids out. It also can lead to overuse of a pitchers arm…which is what we are beginning to see at the professional level. There is really nothing that the MLB can do to change this, except perhaps offer direction. Baseball should spend time preparing messages to younger players and their parents. Most kids will never play professional baseball, but the facts should be known. Throwing a baseball is not a natural action. Throwing a baseball hard puts stress on the shoulder and elbow.

Based on this information, it does not appear that anything will change soon. For the record, of those 20 pitchers undergoing Tommy John surgery only one is from outside the US. It is clear that this problem is something that is homegrown. Hopefully, it will be something that we can soon begin to change.

 


 

 

 


Last weekend was the Masters. The big news leading up to this great tournament was that Tiger Woods would not be healthy enough to participate in this year’s Masters. I have been a big fan of Tiger Wood's golfing. I have watched him perform at a level that few have ever approached. I cheered Tiger on in his pursuit of the major championship record. But, in the back of my mind, I had a nagging feeling like I had forgotten something. This week, I was reminded what I had forgotten. For all of those wins, Tiger Woods will never have something…he will never be the King of golf. There has only ever been one man in golf that completely grabbed the fancy of the country and that was Arnold Palmer. Although, Jack Nicklaus will wear the crown of best player, it is Arnold Palmer that captivated our nation and brought attention to the game of golf. Men wanted to be Palmer and women just wanted him. Class, charisma and charm were characteristics of Arnold Palmer. When Palmer began to make a move up the leader board, he would hitch his pants and eagerly charge toward the next shot. The adoring crowds were called “Arnie’s Army” and they would announce a great shot with a surge of cheers. Seriously, there was no doubt when Palmer sank a long putt or hit a great shot. ..You just knew. He did not so much play golf, as attack the course. As a small kid, I remember thinking that there was something different about this man.  

 

 

 

 

Through all of his professional successes, Palmer remained a hero to every man. You cannot find anyone that will say something bad about Palmer. He has been a gentleman from the beginning. He always had time for a smile and a handshake. Athletes of today would do well to examine the manner that this giant of another generation has handled his business.

 

Here are a few facts about Arnold Palmer:

Hale Irwin said that he learned from Arnold that the most important part of being a professional golfer was what you did outside the ropes.

Palmer said that his father told him…You don’t need to tell anyone how good you are, you show them how good you are.

You can have a discussion over who is the best golfer of all time, but there is no question that Arnold Palmer has been the most important golfer of all time.

Johnny Bench named his son Justin Palmer Bench. Now, that is impressive.

Palmer represents the values of what America used to be. He is an American icon.

Arnold Palmer loved to add lemonade to his glass of iced tea…now that drink is called an Arnold Palmer.

There is so much more about Palmer to discuss. He beat prostate cancer in 1999, but has never quit his fight to beat the disease. He has donated money and been very outspoken to help raise awareness for fighting cancer. He built a Children’s hospital in Florida that remains one of the most impressive hospitals in the country for children.

 

Arnold Palmer brought attention and money to the PGA tour. He helped create the Senior Tour and the Golf Channel. He defined how to create a brand, by living his life doing good things. He began flying his own plane in the 1950s. In watching the golf channel story, it detailed how Palmer decided that at 80 years of age that he should leave the flying to someone else. On his last flight from the west coast to Orlando…he got the red carpet treatment from each airport that he was in communication with. Apparently, all of the airports across the country cleared the way for his flight. I am not a pilot, but supposedly, this is just not done. He did not have to wait for anything…which speaks to the respect that the air traffic guys had for Palmer as a pilot. From his humble beginnings, Palmer has created a huge place in American history…and he has done it the right way.

 

Tiger Woods has been a student of golf and has focused his attention to try to eclipse these records. It is a shame that Tiger does not understand that golf is only a small part of the legacy he will leave behind. It is sad, but I sort of see Tiger Woods as I do Barry Bonds. Both were great players that never realized the true meaning of being a champion. Arnold Palmer is 85 and won’t be with us much longer. It is time we took a moment to acknowledge just how special his life has been.

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

                                                             I think that everyone is ready for the snow to stop...

 


 

 

 

This is a picture of the Utah Valley University baseball field. The UTPA Broncs headed to Orem Utah to take on the Wolverines last weekend. They took 2 out of 3, but could not close out the sweep on Sunday. Watching the games online, I could not help but admire the beautiful venue...at least until the weather turned bad on Sunday. Blake and his guys managed to just beat the snow out of town. Next week is a home series against Bakersfield. Hopefully, they can just keep winning 2 out of three. Taking a series the rest of the way will allow the Broncs to make the conference tournament in May.

 

 

That is all I have today, but I will leave you with a bit of Jack Handey...

 

 

"Too bad you can't buy a voodoo globe so that you could make the earth spin real fast and freak everybody out."

 

"If you're a young Mafia gangster out on your first date, I bet it's real embarrassing if someone tries to kill you. "

 

 

Thanks for stopping by and feel free to leave a few deep thoughts of your own...

 

 

 

Buzz from the Bleachers
Category: Daily Blog 2.0

Welcome to Wednesday, Gabbers. A big off-season football story is developing and not surprisingly deals with a player doing something stupid. This time 49ers LB-DE Aldon Smith has been arrested on charges of falsely reporting that he had a bomb at an airport. Smith could face a year in jail, though he likely won’t if the justice system holds to form on celebrity/athlete cases. 

Granted, cases like Vick’s dog fighting ring and Aaron Hernandez’s murder charge have been handled better than past indiscretions, but the allegations and crimes seem to be getting more disturbing. Since when do people joke about bombs and airports?

Apparently now. Shortly after this bizarre story broke came the story of a Dutch teen named “Sarah”. Sarah thought she could get Twitter fame by send a message to American airlines. The airline didn’t get the joke and responded by telling the girl her information was being forwarded to the FBI. Monday saw the girl turning herself in to local police.

Lesson learned? Hardly. Since the incident, around 12 more people have decided it would be cute to Tweet threats to American airlines as well as other airlines. These people claim that Sarah should be let of as a kid being a kid. Granted teens say and do stupid things, but this goes beyond normal circumstances. Aside from whatever charges this girl gets, I see the no fly list in her future. I see the same or worse for the copycats. These people have to know on some level how tasteless this is, especially in the shadow of Malaysian Airway Flight 370.

In the wake of that stupidity, I thought I might get better news on Facebook. Wrong. A friend had this article up.

http://detroit.cbslocal.com/2014/04/15/matthew-stafford-is-sixth-highest-paid-athlete-in-the-world/

Matthew Stafford is the 6th highest paid athlete in the world. Not the league. Not the country. The World. To be fair, it seems early to really judge the guy. He can make improvements and hopefully is working with the new coaching staff. Still, it’s hard to be reminded that Detroit is paying this guy $31.5 million for 23 turnovers, and a 58.5% completion rating.

Shifting slightly, it’s no secret people are starting to turn on the NCAA. It’s hard to sympathize with a multi-billion dollar tax exempt company. Still, I just heard Shabazz Napier’s comments last weekend about going to bed starving. Starving? I really doubt that. Hungry? Sure. Napier is definitely getting both room and board at Uconn. He has the ability to get food. Unfortunately, he doesn’t have constant access. In his college years, he’s going to be hungry more often. Still, I find it hard to take comments like that serious. 

I think a lot of college players are risking the integrity of the stance against the NCAA. They are starting to make their stance look just like what I (and many others) feared it was: a money grab. What I like about student athletes standing up to the NCAA was the ideas that the colleges were getting out of commitments made to young people too easily. Get hurt in a sport? Well, thanks for the revenue you’ve generated, but we have to kick you out now. Saying you are going to bed starving seems like a plea for spending money. I’ve been in D3 college athletics. The dining halls stay open pretty late to accommodate athletic schedules. If you have a late game, you are generally given money to buy food once you get off the bus.

These kids have managed to make an ugly money grab look like more of a movement for a while. The problem is you have front runners like Napier and even John Calipari coming in and trying to take up a message they don’t seem to fully understand. Sure they have more of a presence than the people who have been making statements, but they don’t have those same ideals. They are too “me first”. If college athletes want concessions, they need to band together and make a group statement. 

On the plus side, the NCAA is listening. They have agreed to make a few concession. They approved a measure that would provide unlimited meals and snacks to all athletes, including walk-ons. They’ve decided that football players need 3 hour breaks between practice sessions, though meetings and film sessions can be held during these breaks. There will now be a school staff member who is certified in CPR and first aide at all athletic events or practices. Strength and conditioning coaches must be certified. 

These moves are far too little, far too late. I think the NCAA is way behind in momentum. I don’t see too many ways for them to get around meeting more demands of the athletes who make them their billions. These are clear acts of appeasement and really only the food rule seems to be tied to any requests. The NCAA needs to change. I don’t know if paying athletes is the way to go just yet, but they need to be out in front of the concerns these kids are bringing to the public.

Well, those were pretty heady topics. I’m really hoping that as baseball progresses and the playoffs begin in the NHL/NBA that the product on the field could slide to the forefront. Thanks as always for stopping in. Feel free to weigh in below. To my Boston friends here at the Gab, I’m not going to like your team this first round. If they do beat the Wings, and I suspect they will, just do Detroit a favor and be sure the Pens get booted quick should Columbus not get the job done.

I still can’t stand Crosby.

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