Tagged with "Florida"
College Football Top 25 Week 4
Category: NCAA

I meant to post this yesterday before the games for this week started. †These rankings are transitional between my subjective rankings and the rankings based on my computer formula, which will be released next week. †I tried to minimize the larger jumps.

Top 25

rank / team / prior
1 Alabama 1
2 Stanford 4
3 Clemson 6
4 Georgia 7
5 Washington 12
6 Ohio St. 2
7 Oregon 3
8 Oklahoma 11
9 LSU 5
10 Florida St. 13
11 Louisville 8
12 S Carolina 9
13 Texas Tech 21
14 Miami 14
15 Fresno St. 25
16 TX A&M 10
17 UCLA 19
18 Va. Tech Ė
19 Michigan 16
20 Ole Miss 15
21 Auburn 20
22 Baylor 22
23 Níwestern 17
24 Florida 23
25 N. Illinois Ė

Out of rankings:†(18) Okie St., (24) Notre Dame

Many of you probably†know where to find†my other blogs†(such as more detailed rankings discussion)†by now, but if you need specific directions, let me know.

I'm Just Saying.....
Category: User Showcase
Tags: Trent Richardson Cleveland Browns Ohio State Louisville Florida State Mercy Rule Red Sox Fans

Iím Just SayingÖ..


I just canít understand what is going on with the Cleveland Browns. Are they trying to build a winning team, or are they trying to be the laughing stock of the NFL. Trading away Trent Richardson for Indianapolisí number one when they could have at least gotten another pick from a disparate Coltís team who where looking for a RB was stupid.

On a side note. Maybe the Browns front office knows what they are doing as they upset the Minnesota Vikings, 31-17.

Ohio State 76-0 over FAMU, Louisville over FIU 72-0, Florida State 54-6 over Bethane Cookman. The fourth quarter of Miami's 77-7 win over Savannah State was shortened to 12 minutes, as mutually agreed upon by both coaches. What more needs to be said about that match-up? Come on now. I think there should be a mercy rule. If a team is down by 40 points going into the 4th quarter, the losing team will get three chances to score from the 50 yard line. If they cannot do so the game will end.

Mariano Rivera Tribute from Yankee players on the Scoreboard and the second one towards the end has Metallica performing live as Mo walks to the pitchers mound

Congratulations to the Atlanta Braves, Oakland Aís, Los Angeles Dodgers, Detroit Tigerís for winning their Division. Congrats to the Reds and Pirates for making the playoffs.

Also, a shout out to the Boston Red Sox. Congrats on a great season. You deserved it. This Yankee fan wonít curse the Red Sox, or insult their fans like the fans of you know who do, even when their team wins the Super Bowl. Nope. Not from me.


Next week, I will have my picks for the Baseball awards.

Preliminary LSU Thoughts and Dodger Blue Skies
Category: NCAA

Preliminary LSU Thoughts

Iím fine with my team not being highly rated to start, but I still question the reasoning.

I guess people are forgetting that despite the #14 ranking to finish last year, LSU was one of the handful of top teams in the country for the third year in a row. The loss to Clemson in the bowl game was a matter of a highly motivated team playing a highly disappointed team. Iím not saying that it wasnít right for LSU to fall in the polls afterward, but that didnít mean that they werenít one of the best teams in the country. If Alabama had been slotted into the Peach Bowl (Chick-fil-A doesnít send me money, so Iím calling it what I want) against Clemson, that probably would have been a really close game too. When you are the national runner-up one year and you go down to the wire against a team like Alabama for what in all likelihood would have been a chance to repeat as SEC Champions, the Peach Bowl isnít something you get excited about.

Iím not saying LSU would have necessarily won the SEC (Georgia showed itself to be pretty much equal to LSU and Alabama despite having played none of the top three teams in the West before the SEC Championship game [SECCG]), but only very good SEC teams control their own destiny going into the SECCG. LSU was in that position in neither of its championship years; and of course in 2011, Alabama wasnít even in the SECCG.

An unfortunate aspect of preseason rankings is many voters (or random people who do preseason rankings) want to envision a team going undefeated. Thatís hard to do when you have to play the best four other SEC teams from last year (Alabama, Texas A&M, Georgia, and Florida) and TCU.

How many does Alabama have to play? Two. So itís possible LSU beats Alabama and still doesnít make the SECCG as a result of the rest of the schedule.

You might vaguely recall the fact that Alabama had an easier slate against the East last year too. The Tide played Missouri and Tennessee while the Tigers played Florida and South Carolina. It seems like the least that could have been done would have been to let LSU play Missouri this year.

LSU also had quite a gauntlet in 2011 and went 13-0 going into the BCS title game. And that was without a reliable quarterback, which LSU finally seems to have going into next year. Zach Mettenberger had some shaky starts early last year, but compared to Jarrett Leeís growing pains, his first season was a walk in the park. Had LSU not played Florida, the Tigers could have very well gone into the Alabama game (in which Mettenberger would have likely finished leading the team to victory had he been allowed) undefeated.

Continue Reading...

Being Josh Beckett
Category: User Showcase
Tags: MLB FloridaMarlins BostonRedSox LosAngelesDodgers

Quote from the Firefly TV series episode "Shindig":

"Malcolm Reynolds: Sure. It would be humiliating. Having to lie there while the better man refuses to spill your blood. Mercy is the mark of a great man.

[lightly stabs Atherton with the sword]

Guess I'm just a good man.

[stabs him again]

†Well, I'm all right."

And with that I say...

Normally I am one for feeling bad when an athlete gets hurt. They work so hard to get where they are and find themselves trying to carve out a career in their chose profession. And then it all goes to crap when they get hurt or worse, continually hurt.

So when people get hurt I feel at least a little bad. Hell, I felt bad for Derek Jeter. (Okay, exception to the rule #1, Alex Rodriguez).

But then there is the curious case of Josh "The Bonehead" Beckett.

You remember Beckett, don't you?

He was the young stud pitcher who stood on the mound at Yankee Stadium in 2003 and took them apart to help the Florida Marlins win the World Series.

And he was the slightly older but still pretty impressive hurler who in 2007 was a vital component of that standout Boston Red Sox team that won the World Series.

And that's where things began to unravel. From that point on it was a downward spiral for him. And he compounded things by being a dickhead.

He had a ton of injuries. Blisters, a bad back and more. All things that make you hope he gets better fast. When you are supposed to be the ace of a pitching staff, fans root for your recovery†for as little as if you stubbed your toe.

And what did Beckett give in return? Unrelenting scorn for the fans who rooted for him and continued scorn for those who got sick of him whipping out his skippy and pissing all over them.

There was the time that he missed a start in the latter days of his time with the Red Sox. I think it was due to a sore shoulder. The next day was an off day and he went out and played golf.

When the media and fans found out about and questioned how he could play golf a day after missing a start due to injury, he got pissy-assed with them. Hey Josh, when you don't do the job you are paid to do, people are going to want answers when†you get caught not being nearly as hurt as you indicated.

And the piece de resistance for the downfall of the Boston Beckett Bunch was his leading man role in the Chicken and Beer scandal of 2011. It was a contributing factor in the firing of Terry Francona and made for a hellaciously challenging off season for the Red Sox.

It also was the key reason why the Sox brought in Bobby Valentine, which turned out to be a disaster on the level of the ball going through Buckner's legs.

By the time, he got traded (along with two other malcontents: Adrian Gonzalez and Carl Crawford) to the Dodgers, it was good riddance to Beckett's Bad Garbage.

But the ingrained notion of not taking delight of any kind when it comes to a player's injury got a challenging workout when a few weeks ago, I read an article on Yahoo that said due to continue numbness in Beckett's fingers, he may end up having to retire.

Article Link: http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/mlb-big-league-stew/josh-beckett-retirement-possible-because-numbness-fingers-163222403.html

I mean, no one should have their career end like that, right?

And then the evil side of the vocal chorus in my head chimed in with, "Screw him, he screwed the Red Sox and now karma has bitten him in the ass."

He was 0-5 with a 5.19 ERA for the Dodgers and it isn't like they were really going to miss all those homers (8 dingers in 8 games) that he was giving up.

Then on June 30th, I read the updated news on SI.com that he was going to be out for the season to undergo thoracic outlet surgery to relieve pressure on a compressed nerve in his neck.

Article Link: http://mlb.si.com/2013/06/30/josh-beckett-to-undergo-season-ending-neck-surgery/

The "angels" chorus (not the ones in Anaheim) in my head felt finding out a cause for the numbness was a good thing. In any walk of life, you don't want to go through the daily motions of your day knowing something is wrong but have no idea what that something is.

Then the devils (not the ones in New Jersey) counterpunched with "But he's a stubbornly selfish pain in the ass who screwed your team over!"

I tell you it is damn hard with all this to and fro going on.

But proving that he could fall into a bucket of rancid monkey feces and come out smelling spring cleaning fresh, Beckett is still making out like a bandit.

Oh sure, he's done for the year. But he's expected back for spring training so he has yet another chance to recapture a little of his past glories.

But for a guy who has spent the last few years not being a very effective pitcher and a world class jackass, that didn't seem to bother New Balance.

The athletic shoe and apparel company signed Beckett to an endorsement deal the day after he was confirmed out for the season.

It must be nice. I guess I have to start being a bigger asshole in life.

Yes Yes, there are plenty of people who probably already think of me as one already but just imagine if I really put some effort into it?

Why I could end up Being Josh Beckett!

Solving the SEC Scheduling Dilemma
Category: NCAA

We are now more than halfway through the college football off-season. I hope everyone hasnít forgotten about me.

Iíve had a few minor things in other sports I wanted to write about in isolation, but I might do a bigger blog about other sports in the next few weeks.

To make the blog friendly to people who arenít avid college sports fans (or at least might not have been for the last 20+ years to the same extent I have been), I think some background is in order. Before 1992, the SEC was 10 teams and had been that way for nearly 30 years (after Tulane and Georgia Tech had departed in the 1960s). There were not formal divisions, but there were teams that traditionally played one another and other teams that did not.

I know more about LSU, so Iíll use them as an example. LSU has played Florida every year since the early 1970s, but fans would drive (or fly) past Auburn (who very rarely appeared on LSUís schedule) on the way there. The two teams of Tigers rarely met before the division system was implemented. (The division system entails playing every team in your division every year, and LSU and Auburn were placed in the same division, so they began playing annually at that time.) LSU has remained a permanent opponent of Florida despite being in another division, but since there is only one permanent inter-divisional opponent, LSU stopped playing Kentucky yearly, and Florida stopped playing Auburn yearly.

Until Missouri and Texas A&M joined within the last year, everyone seemed content with the system, which had been on a set rotation for about 10 years. The previous 10 years were operated with two permanent inter-divisional opponents, but this meant large stretches without playing any given teams of the four other teams in the opposite division. None of the teams seemed too traumatized by losing their #2 inter-divisional opponent, and I thought it was more exciting as a fan to play the other teams on a more regular basis.

The makeshift schedule that operated last year and will operate next yearĖand perhaps years into the futureĖis a ď6-1-1″ format. This means 6 divisional opponents (each division expanded to 7 teams when Missouri and Texas A&M were added), one permanent opponent, with the other 6 conference teams rotating to round out the schedule. This reintroduces the problem that existed under the 1992 to 2002 format with a number of teams rotating around one spot, except that now itís 6 teams instead of 4.

There is a proposal favored by LSU, Texas A&M, and South Carolina that the SEC forget about the permanent inter-divisional opponents entirely and simply move to a 6-2 format, six in your own division, two from the other division on a constant rotation. The Advocate newspaper reports that ďseveralĒ SEC coaches have said that the teams are split over whether to go that route or maintain the same format that is being used now (or perhaps a slightly modified version). I would think Florida probably leans toward 6-2 as well, given that the Gators probably place the same priority on playing LSU every years as LSU does on playing Florida every year, which is to say, they donít find it important at all. At least not as compared to a more equitable schedule. Missouri may also prefer it, but perhaps not as long as Missouri is in the SEC East. Missouri is not a natural match-up for Florida, South Carolina, and Georgia, but it may make up for it a bit if Missouri can begin an annual series with Arkansas. (This has not been implemented yet under the current temporary format. Arkansas is still playing South Carolina, and Missouri is playing Texas A&M.) Texas A&M and South Carolina donít want to be forced to play one another every year as left-overs. South Carolina had been playing Arkansas, which didnít make sense historically or geographically either.

There is a third major option that no one apart from Alabama (specifically Nick Saban) favors, which is to move to a 9-game schedule, with two rotating inter-divisional opponents and one permanent one. There are a few problems with this, even though it seems to be where most of the other major conferences are going. It creates an imbalance where some teams will have 4 conference road games and others will have 5. It would also make it more difficult to schedule out of conference. It would also likely reduce the chances of an SEC team winning the national championship due to difficulties in remaining undefeated after playing 10 games against SEC teams (including the championship game) and due to the fact that the SEC as a whole (if not the individual team) may lack other quality opponents that establish how good the SEC is. A home game is not easily parted with in the SEC, given that football helps fund the other sports and in some cases even helps fund other university expenses. 100,000 seats, even if there is a weak opponent, can command a tidy sum of money.

Full blog, including map...

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