While possibly headed towards a Internet hiatus as my home computer seems to have died on me as of yesterday (Saturday September 5th)...
Don't forget, you can follow me on Twitter: @TheOneTrueJay
Denver Broncos - So...Wes Welker gets banged up on the field for his 3rd concussion within a year and everyone is concerned for his future welfare.
But a couple of days later, the concern goes out the window when his 4 game suspension for PEDs is announced. Apparently he decided to do some extracurricular celebrating at the Kentucky Derby and now he's going to pay the price.
You can imagine that Peyton Manning isn't going to be very happy with this turn of events. His initial comments gave you a little insight to what he was thinking. You know that "It's a self inflicted wound" can't bode well for Welker when he returns to the field.
Of course, you do have to wonder just how stupid Welker has gotten. PEDs? Really? For a guy who built is rep and career on being the scrappy underdog type of player, he's not going to get any sympathy for cheating this way.
I'm in two leagues this year, but for the first time I wasn't actually involved in the live drafts for either of the leagues. I got my teams autopicked and will have to see how I do with the computer's idea of stocking my team.
Is anyone else not quite feeling ready for fantasy season this year? I know that missing the live draft didn't bother me much at all. Could that be a sign that the allure of fantasy football is fading?
Typical, eh? Last season I rooted for the Chicago Sky as my secondary WNBA team because they had Carolyn Swords on the team. They cut her before the season this year and my fandom left with her.
And then earlier this week, the Sky advanced to the WNBA finals. ARGGGHH!
HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS
The high school season has gotten underway and while I have decided to pull back on my attendance at the fall sports events, I will still follow them through the papers.
Upper Cape Girls Varsity Soccer - The Lady Rams got off to a 0-1-1 start by tying Holbrook at nil and then losing to Bishop Connolly 2-0.
Wareham Girls Varsity Soccer - Despite a reported improvement in overall play, the Vikings dropped what is at least their 37th game in a row, falling 2-0 to GNB Voc-Tech.
Wareham Girls Field Hockey - The season opened with a 3-2 loss to GNB Voc-Tech. They lost on Friday to Apponequet 6-0.
Wareham Girls Volleyball - Their season opened with a 3 games to none loss to GNB Voc-Tech. Against Bishop Connolly on Friday, they lost 3-0 as well.
Here's some photos of my ex-players in action during the Voc-Tech match:
Wareham Football - I ended up attending this game because my girlfriend's daughter is in the marching band, so I promised to attend a game to see her perform. As for the game, Wareham went up 12-7 early but Bishop Stang rallied back to take 15-12 lead before a 64 yard punt return for a TD gave the Spartans control of the game and they rolled to a 42-26 victory over the Vikings.
One of my ex-players on the team is Josh, and he scored a 3 yard touchdown early in the game.
BOSTON COLLEGE EAGLES FOOTBALL
The BC Eagles opened up their season on Friday night and unfortunately for them, they came away on the wrong end of a 30-20 score versus Pittsburgh.
Tyler Murphy (pictured below) was again the main star for the Eagles. The QB had a relatively inefficient night throwing the ball (10-27 for 134 yards and a TD while getting sacked 4 times) but he rant for 104 net rushing yards and another score.
But the Eagles defense gave up 416 yards of total offense including 213 rushing yards (and a TD) to Pitt's James Connor.
TV - The A&E network screwed over fans of the series Longmire this past week when they canceled the show after three seasons. It was a cancelation that reportedly took TV industry insiders by surprise. As a big fan of the show, I'm fed up with how A&E does business. They've fallen so far into the abyss of TV programming, there's really nothing left on the network I would watch without feeling the need to apologize to the entirety of mankind for doing so. (Yes, Storage Wars...this means you!)
And in really good news, the first season of the Robert Urich/Avery Brooks series Spenser: For Hire was released on DVD through Warner Archive's MOD program. I ordered it and now I'm in the midst of watching it. Though Robert B. Parker (the author of the Spenser prose novels) was not thrilled with Urich's portrayal, I've always loved him in the role and am a bit overjoyed that this show is now on DVD. Oh and Avery Brooks as Hawk still resonates strongly to this day.
I also picked up the second season of the sitcom Benson this week.
Books - I finished reading the Carol O'Connell book The Chalk Girl this week. I'm a bit behind on that series as the paperback was released in 2012, but the series heroine Mallory (don't call her Kathy), a sociopathic NYPD detective, is always a fascinating read and this entry in the series is no exception.
I also picked up the new Patricia Cornwell paperback called Dust. It is the latest in her Kay Scarpetta series. Now I just need to catch up on the series as I'm three books behind in reading.
Music - You can check out my review of the Night Ranger concert I attended back on August 20th via this KNAC.com link.
I also picked up a couple of new CDs. I went back in time a bit and picked up the first Night Ranger CD Dawn Patrol. And coming back to the present, I picked up the new Accept CD Blind Rage, which comes with a bonus DVD featuring a 22 live concert performance.
In sad news, one of my favorite singers passed away this past week. Survivor vocalist Jimi Jamison died at the age of 63 from a heart attack. His work with the band will always remain a highlight, but his earlier work with the groups Target and Cobra as well as his solo career and collaborative projects are also well worth the effort of tracking down.
Jamison was my first close up brush with rock star fame as I saw him with Survivor in 1986. During the encore of "Eye of the Tiger", I got to exchange a high five with him. At the time, it was quite a moment for me.
One of my favorite songs from his Survivor material is the track "It's the Singer Not the Song". You can check it out below.
His voice is one of the most underrated of the entire AOR genre and instantly identifiable. Though 63 may not seem young, it is still far too soon for his voice to have been forever silenced. RIP, Jimi.
So hi dee ho neighbors. Welcome Gabbers and others to my NASCAR updates and other fast stuff. It's the wee hours again as I write this while yawning sporadically. Just got done watching the last race of the regular season. Our field of 16 is set. So there's that to talk about. So like who's ready for football? Fall weather? Not ready for Pink-tober. We could skip that. Especially since the NFL botched the punishments for their domestic violence offenders. Please don't try to make it up to us women and tell us you care. Really? I'm not buying it. Pink-tober has a big smudge on it now.
Michael Waltrip from MWR is heading to Dancing With The Stars this season. Mr Chong form Cheech & Chong will be dancing too. And Lo Lo Jones. I liked watching Apolo Ono & Hines Ward when they were on. Didn't know Hines could still make his football battered body move in fluid motion. I'll probably catch the shows on You Tube after they're on tv. Watching the dancing is pretty cool. I almost can see Lawrence Welk and his bubble machine when I watch that show. And a 1 and a 2 and a 3.
OK....so that picture there is the high light of the race. I actually have to say that it was just that boring that this guy climbing the catch fence was the highlight of the race. Out of 400 laps Keselowski led 383 of them. So why would they stop a race for some guy sitting on the catch fence?
That's why. The catch fence catches cars that go up in the air. There weren't any wrecks at Richmond but one never knows. Such a dumass. Wonder how drunk he was or high to think that he should climb the fence. I will give him this much, it was one damn boring race. Oh, sorry, I already mentioned that.
Johnson got out of his car, sat down and couldn't get up. He was treated at the infield care center for dehydration. It was Hot & humid at race time.
Hey, The Danica finished 16th and on the lead lap. Girl is winning.
Top 15 finishers : Keselowski - Gordon - Bowyer - McMurray - Harvick - Logano - Ku Bu - Johnson - Newman - Almirola - Larson - Dale Jr - Vickers - Ky Bu - Stewart
Keselowski 4W's >>>>> 2012 points
Gordon 3W's >>>>> 2009 points
Dale Jr 3W's >>>>> 2009 points
Johnson 3W's >>>>> 2009 points
Logano 3W's >>>>> 2009 points
Harvick 2W's >>>>> 2006 points
Edwards 2W's >>>>> 2006 points
Ky Bu 1W >>>>> 2003 points
Hamlin 1W >>>>> 2003 points
Ku Bu 1W >>>>> 2003 points
Kahne 1W >>>>> 2003 points
Almirola 1W >>>>> 2003 points
Allmendinger 1W >>>>> 2003 points
Kenseth - No W's >>>>> 2000 points
Biffle - No W's >>>>> 2000 points
Newman - No W's >>>>> 2000 points
So next week I'll explain how the elimination works. I'm just too beat to do that now. The weather in combination with all the life that's been thrown at me this past week as pulled me down a tad. I hope all is well in Gabland, our traveling Gabbers are safe and every body else is planted in front of the flat screen with remote in hand and favorite beverage in the cup holder. I do believe it's football time.
Even when you're a big boy, things don't always go your way. College powerhouses get a comeuppance with some regularity. Even an entire conference can have a bad day. But it doesn't usually happen on a weekend when said conference's slate is mostly made up of what you might call --- no, what you WOULD call --- schedule padding. Tuneups. Extra week of practice.
Once there was a time when the Big Ten meant the big time. They were more than competitive with anybody anywhere. Oh, they'd have their troubles against the PAC-10 and its passing offenses in the Rose Bowl, were eclipsed for a while in the midlands by the wishbone-era Big Eight, and always faced tough competition from the SEC, but generally the cloud-of-dust conference had their way often enough.
Without even trying to answer that question, we simply slide to the gameday results of Saturday. All games were out-of-conference. As mentioned, it was largely a tuneup week for most teams, the schedule heavy with FCS competition. You know... the guys who traditionally get steamrolled and finish looking into the stratosphere at 60 or 70 points on the wrong side of the board as the rankings-happy giants on the other side run up the score.
There were some exceptions. Michigan State traveled 2000 miles to face the PAC10's... um... PAC12's (give the Big Ten some credit for keeping their name even with 14 teams) mighty Oregon Ducks in their own building. Ohio State scheduled Virginia Tech, formerly of the Big East and now the ACC, but still no pushover. Michigan took on traditional foe Notre Dame, and Maryland (Maryland??) faced South Florida, plenty of competition... for Maryland, certainly.
The results were a bit daunting for Big Ten fans. Of that group, only Maryland (Maryland??) won, 24-17, courtesy only of a 4th-quarter TD on a blocked punt. The #7 Spartans looked to be laying one on #3 Oregon, but then the Ducks, down 27-18 in the 3rd quarter, started quacking and the mirage lifted as they scored the last 28 points of the game. Unranked Michigan was systematically crushed 37-0 by a Notre Dame team that, yes, was ranked #16, but not considered a title threat (except in South Bend). And THE Ohio State University (#8) proved no match for unranked VT, being dumped 35-21.
If that sounds pretty bad, the worst may be yet to come.
Penn State scheduled Akron. At the end of the 3rd quarter the Lions held a hardly-commanding 14-3 lead. That they would win 21-3 was of little consolation to those who worry about rankings.
Purdue may not have been worried about national rankings, but they are Big Ten after all. They were absolutely squashed by Central Michigan 38-17.
Rutgers (Rutgers??) faced off against little Howard, and graciously permitted Howie to score 12 points in the 4th quarter with the game already won.
#18 Wisconsin, seemingly remembering where they come from, laid a merciful 37-3 drubbing on Western Illinois. And truth be told, it was close at halftime. Wisky scored all 28 points of the second half.
Meanwhile, not to let every FCS school in Illinois serve as schedule padding, the MAC's Northern Illinois took out Northwestern 23-15.
In Minnesota, the Golden Gophers took on Middle Tennessee (?) and soundly thrashed their tuneup targets 35-24. Ok, so they didn't soundly thrash them.
Trailing 27-21 going into the 4th quarter, the Fighting Illini scored 21 in a row before giving up one more score to top a far-too-competitive Western Kentucky 42-34.
Trailing mighty Ball State 13-3 with 3 minutes to go, Iowa somehow scored twice to avert a humiliating upset and instead garnered a humiliating victory.
#19 Nebraska needed a fortuitous penalty on a late scoring play by formidable McNeese State to keep from falling behind with 4 minutes left, then broke the tie at 0:20 with a 58-yard catch-and-run. Inspiring stuff. Not against McNeese State, however. It is doubtful the rankers were inspired.
Let's summarize a nightmarish day for a proud conference:
* Only four teams of the thirteen who played took on an arguably competitive opponent.
* Of those, only one team won, and that's Maryland, hardly a name that gets the blood flowing for a lifelong Big Ten fan.
* The other nine games were overt schedule padding.
* Of those games, two were convincing wins, and one was by Rutgers (see comment on Maryland above).
* Of the final seven games, five were disastrously unconvincing wins, and two more outright losses.
* On a weekend that featured mostly tuneup games the Big Ten went 8-5, with even most of the wins proving damaging.
* Four Big Ten teams came into the weekend ranked. Two of them lost, only one to a ranked opponent. The other two beat FCS competition, one just barely.
* Two opponents were ranked, and both crushed their Big Ten foes.
What to make of all of this? Bad day? The weeks to come will give more data, but one rule of thumb you can seemingly take away from this Saturday is that if a Big Ten team is playing outside the conference... TAKE THE OTHER GUY!
Another disaster for traditional Big Ten fans... the East Division standings of the Big Ten are led by Maryland and Rutgers.
And one last disaster... if you're an Ohio State fan, boycott Nike. They have destroyed a beautiful and traditional uniform. Maybe they've destroyed them all. I didn't get to watch every game. What's the point?
Hello folks, and welcome to this week’s grumble with IHM. Just got done going over the damage outside from the storms last night… had a big branch fall on the garage (luckily the roof is still intact), and another one fall in the driveway about three inches away from the hood of my car… crazy bunch of storms with winds up to 75 MPH… and they really did blow in fast. Luckily we still have power, and nothing important was damaged! Made for one crazy night though, for sure. But with yesterday being the hottest day of the year thus far (92 degrees, and humid as hell), and fall coming in… I’m glad to see summer go. No more spending the day sitting around in ball soup!
I really have to say that as much as I hate winter, I really can’t wait for November 5th. It has nothing to do with the weather… I’m just already tired of the insultingly stupid political ads on the airwaves here in Michigan! It particularly bothers me the way they seem to single out women… the way they use issues like abortion (which the supreme court has already ruled on, and ZERO changes are coming to), birth control (which isn’t changing any time soon, yet the leftists seem convinced that Republicans are hell bent on making illegal), and equal pay for women… even though they always neglect to mention other factors in people’s pay… like tenure, experience, and qualifications. It’s just a damn shame to see political parties, particularly the Democratic Party, treat women as though they are incapable of making an informed decision and targeting them as though they will vote based on their feelings alone. Just stick to the issues that actually matter, not the fluff issues that ultimately don’t matter, and that do nothing for 80% of the country… like gay marriage for example. You think anybody is doing anything about that anytime soon? Hell no… the leftists need that issue to remain in play so they can continually use it as a chip against the right. Yet, when it comes to taxes, employment, government waste… the shit that the government should ACTUALLY be involved in, not a peep from their side. This is why I vote Republican or more so Independent/Third Party… they seem more apt to stick to the issues and at least make an attempt to affect change in policies that clearly aren’t working. Either way, I can’t wait til these trash political ads are off the airwaves for another two years.
The big story of the week has been the Cincinnati Bengals giving a practice squad spot to Devon Still, a 2012 second round pick out of Penn State who has underperformed in his two years in the NFL and was edged out for the #4 DT spot on the team. The important thing about this story is the fact that Still’s daughter was diagnosed with cancer on July 2nd, and the Bengals adding him to their practice squad helps Still by providing his daughter with insurance for her treatments and keeps him in Ohio (his daughter is currently in a hospital near Philadelphia) much closer to her. The $6,800 a week practice squad check doesn’t hurt, either! The cynic in me immediately thought that the classy thing would have been to do this and not advertise it… but it is Still spreading the word about the team’s good deed, not the Bengal PR team. They were more than willing to keep this on the down low. Great to see this kind of story in a world where it seems like no matter what kind of news you’re looking at… world news, local news, sports news, there is nothing but bad news coming at you.
Sad news in the world of baseball as Rangers manager Ron Washington resigned yesterday, citing “personal issues”. Rangers GM John Daniels has insisted that the resignation is not “drug related” or health related. He was offered a leave of absence, but declined in the best interests of the team.
The biggest story of the week, of course, was The Fappening… the hacking of nude pictures of celebrities, many, many celebrities, off of their cell phones. Now, earlier in the year, the big issue was NSA, FBI, CIA spying on American citizens… under the guise of “national security”… but now that celebrities are involved, the FBI is ready to investigate. The sports connection to the story, of course, is the fact that Kate Upton was amongst the celebrities hacked… and evidently had many photos of herself and boyfriend Justin Verlander in varied states of undress. Justin Verlander is said to be “embarrassed” by this. My take… why be embarrassed by the fact that there is a photo of you bare assed with Kate Upton? If anything, that makes you a fucking legend! I’d be much, much more embarrassed by the fact that you’re a $25 million dollar a year pitcher with an ERA of 4.80. Be embarrassed by your performance, not by the fact that you’re frolicking around nude with freaking Kate Upton!
As for the Fappening as a whole… maybe don’t take nude pictures of yourself if you don’t want there to be any chance of them being leaked to the public. Just a thought.
Now that we have a full weekend of football on tap, college today and pro tomorrow (as well as a Monday night double-header), I can officially be happy that Fall is here. I’ll probably be inhabiting the couch for the majority of the weekend, especially with Michigan State traveling to Eugene, Oregon to play the Ducks tonight… that should be one hell of a ballgame. As for the Lions, I’ll have to wait for Monday night to see their season debut against the Giants. Speaking of Giants… the San Francisco Giants are in town for a three game set with the Tigers… let’s hope the Tigers can take at least one game this time around after the embarrassment that was that 2012 World Series sweep.
Hope you all enjoy your weekend of football (and baseball… that’s still going on, too!) Thanks as always for reading, and for any comments you leave on the way out. Have a great weekend, Gabbers.
The start of football season mandates a prediction of a Super Bowl Champion...so to kill the suspense, I once again my Team of Destiny to be the New Orleans Saints. As one who, as they say, "can't pick his nose," it is not worth calling into your favorite booking establsihment with a mortgage payment based on that prediction, however, I can't be any worse than the legions of so-called experts that picked - now here's a surprise - the Seahawks.
Just to expand on that for a moment, I have to ask what kind of expert do you have to be to pick the Broncos and Seahawks as AFC and NFC champions respectively? The last meaningful data point we have to go on was the last Super Bowl...and last February, those were the best two teams. But things change after the season, players move on, injuries accumulate (both seen and not seen), emotions vary...there are a lot of reasons why teams do not perform to expectations. To me, a real preseason forecast would dig a little deeper to make their picks.
The fact of the matter is that unless there is some momumental change in the way the NFL does things, there will be about a 50% turnover in playoff teams, the last Super Bowl loser will not win a playoff game and the last Super Bowl winner will not repeat. Those are historical facts. The last Super Bowl loser to win the next Super Bowl? The 1972 Miami Dolphins who had to go 17-0 to do it. That puts over 40 years between us and the SB loser claiming the next title...you can add another year to that list as the Broncos will not repeat as AFC champs.
Picking the Seahawks to get back to the Super Bowl is a different subject - they are basically intact, have a young and developing QB, a great defense...what could go wrong? They certainly will be a playoff team. It is hard to imagine them not winning 10 games this season, but they play in a very difficult division. One team of mystery is the Cardinals. They have all the ingredients to be a surprise team and could upset Seattle. One advantage both SF and Seattle have is that young QB's that have not had their "pay day" yet. Once they do - and consume $20 million of cap space - their teams will slowly but surely deteriorate. It is the Rozelle Curse of Parity working long after he retired.
My other big unknown team is my hometown Redskins. We just don't know whether we are going to get Rookie of the Year RGIII or 2013 SpongeBob. The defense looks better but who knows. Playing in the terrible NFC East, winnning 8 games is not impossible and, who knows?, that may be enough! So I have rambled on enough....here are the rest of my picks:
NFC Division Champs: Eagles, Saints, Lions, Seahawks with Packers and Cardinals as wild cards
AFC Division Champs: Patriots, Bengals, Colts, Broncos with Ravens and Chiefs as wild cards
Super Bowl: Saints versus Patriots
Well...at least its different than everyone else - but those are my picks.