Tagged with "MLB"
Sunday Musings #170
Category: User Showcase
Tags: MLB Golf FantasyFootball CollegeFootball HighSchoolSports CollegeBasketball

 

 

While bouncing back from kind of a crappy week...

 

I know this is supposed to be a powerful statement against sexism and such, but aside from that, I just couldn't stop laughing at this hilarious video.

 

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

It was quite the eventful week in college football and it really began last Saturday when former USC star LenDale White went on Twitter to blast AD Pat Haden after White got kicked out of the stadium. Reading the news article, White makes a case for why ex-players should never be allowed around a program once they leave the school.

It's been three years since the Jerry Sandusky scandal erupted at Penn State. SI.com's Tim Layden went to Happy Valley to see how things have changed since then. You can read the story HERE.

The University of North Carolina has long had a strong academic reputation. But that reputation is not only tarnished now, it is in tatters. A report released this week revealed a massive cheating scandal over years that included over 3,100 students. That figure includes 1,500 athletes. While football players aren't the only sport indicted, they do seem to be a large part of it along with men's and women's basketball as well. You can read the story HERE.

Because athletes are involved, that is the angle most stories will carry. It is hard to argue with that notion, but it would be nice to see the 1600 "regular" students get their turn in the harsh media glare as well. As for the athletic department, you do have to ask why in the world they would do this. Okay, yes they need players to pass so they can play but there's two glaring problems with this school of thought. The first is that they aren't doing any real service to the students by letting them cheat. The constant handwringing about giving athletes a chance to change their lives by attending college kind of goes by the boards when it turns they didn't actually do any work in the first place. These same athletes that were being helped to stay eligible will be utterly bereft of further life opportunities that the top notch education they were SUPPOSED to be getting would have given them when their athletic careers end. It's like they want to turn out a generation of idiots who don't know how to do anything.

The second problem is that SECRETS ALWAYS FIND THEIR WAY OUT! Yes, it may take a long time but eventually all these scandals find the spotlight. You may get away with it in the short term, but the hammer is going to come down on your and yours HARD when you do get caught.

I know that the NFL doesn't allow players into the league until three years after high school, but they might want to change that rule. If only so that colleges stop letting people into the school that can't possibly do the work. Social promotion is a horrible excuse for turning out one moron after another. Either teach like you are supposed to do, or get out of the business of education. If that affects the won-loss record of your football team, so be it. You are the ones responsible for the bed you made, now lay down in it.

Yahoo Sports columnist Pat Forde had a great piece on the scandal. Check it out via this link.

Boston College - Before talking about the Eagles on the road vs. Wake Forest yesterday, I thought you might want to check out this article on quarterback Tyler Murphy.

The game against the Demon Deacons started out in the first half as an exercise in total domination by the Eagles. Boston College was up 17-0 at halftime with a total of 213 yards of total offense. 147 of those yards came via the run game. Conversely, Wake Forest had MINUS 3 yards rushing (6 yards total offense) for the half.

In the second half, Wake Forest didn't improve all that much on the ground (19 total yards rushing for the game), but their passing game took off and finished with 242 yards through the air as they pushed BC's seeming inability to get much going offensively. The Eagles held on to win 23-17 but some might say that the Eagles kind of rested on their first half laurels and almost paid a dear price for it.

In moving to 5-3, the Eagles got a superlative rushing defense (see below) that also saw them sack Wake Forest QB John Wolford 4 times. While the secondary did give up yardage in the air, it was DB Justin Simmons picking off Wolford that sealed the victory for the Eagles.

QB Tyler Murphy (pictured below) was an economical 11-15 passing for 165 yards, including a 37 yard TD pass to Shakim Phillips. Murphy also ran for 77 yards.

Freshman sensation Jon Hilliman (pictured below twice) ran for 101 yards and two touchdowns.

The Eagles are now one win away from becoming bowl eligible

You can check out the game highlight reel below.

Alabama - The Crimson Tide rolled to a 7-1 record with their 34-20 victory over Tennessee last night. While Bama seemed to be in full control as they built a 27-0 lead, the Volunteers did eventually make it a game with their ability to run against the Crimson Tide defense. The Volunteers finished with 181 yards on the ground, which was just 2 yards less than what Alabama finished with.

The edge in the game came via the arm of quarterback Blake Sims (pictured below). He threw for 286 yards including two big scoring strikes (80 and 41 yards) to Amari Cooper in the first quarter. He also ran for another score.

Amari Cooper (pictured below) caught 9 passes for a school record 224 yards to go with those 2 TDs.

Derrick Henry and T.J. Yeldon (pictured below) each ran for a score.

The defense had a rough day in giving up a total of 383 yards. They managed to pick off Tennessee QB Joshua Dobbs once and had two sacks.

Here's the video highlights.

Mass Maritime - The Buccaneers went on the road this week to play UMass-Dartmouth. I went to this game last year when Maritime hosted (brutally freaking cold that day). One of the coaches for UMD is a former basketball player I coached, which always makes me chuckle.

The game ended up resembling a Wild West shootout as the four game losing streak for Mass Maritime came to an end. The final score was 46-41. Maritime is now 2-5 on the season.

The game featured almost 1000 yards in total offense between the two teams, and Maritime's defense tallied 6 sacks on the afternoon. E.J. caught 2 passes for 47 yards and a touchdown.

By the way, you can read a brief article about E.J. that was published in the Cape Cod Times on 10/23/14 HERE.

THE BASEBALL HOT STOVE

While it isn't OFFICIALLY the hot stove season in baseball yet, there were a couple of moves off the field that caught my interest.

Try as I might, the World Series isn't really holding my interest. I don't have anything against either team, but with the Boston Red Sox out of things, the largest part of my rooting interest ended at their game 162.

Speaking of the Red Sox, the team announced the hiring of Chili Davis as their new hitting coach. The former All-Star player was been the hitting coach with the Oakland A's the last three seasons, but worked as the Red Sox instructor at the Triple A level before that. He seemed to have a pretty good run of success with the A's, so let's hope he can get Yoenis Cespedes to have a better OBP next season. And it would also help if he could get some of the younger guys to at least look like they can hit major league pitching.

The far bigger news came on Friday when Joe Maddon opted out of his contract with the Tampa Bay DEVIL Rays. He had a year left on the contract but decided to exercise that clause. After the Rays executive VP of baseball operations Andrew Friedman left to join the Dodgers organization, this latest departure could be the harbinger of the Rays going back to being a non-competitive laughingstock. And it likely gives Maddon a chance to find a new managerial job with a club that actually spends money on players rather than solely draft players and hope for the best. You can read more about Maddon's departure HERE.

GOLF

Yes, it is really me writing about the topic of golf. However, given my longstanding aversion to the activity, it won't come as too much of a shock when you see that I'm writing about something outside of the actual playing of the game.

On Friday, Ted Bishop, the president of the PGA, was impeached from his position (a month before his term was up anyway) because of comments he made first on Twitter and then expanded upon on Facebook. He was defending Nick Faldo against Ian Poulter (two players feuding with each other) and Bishop referred to Poulter as a "little girl" and then later "like a little girl squealing at recess".

As you might expect, the sexism card was played and though he was offered the chance to resign, he declined. The PGA's board of governors then voted him out anyway. He's losing his job, he won't be recognized as an honorary president and won't be referred to by the PGA as a past president.

Seriously? All this over him acting like a two year old and throwing around relatively tame (or should I say lame ass) insults? I'm more offended that he couldn't come up with anything more creative to use to insult Poulter.

But I guess in this day and age, you can't say anything to anyone or about anyone without someone acting like you've just made a sin against all mankind.

You can read more (including some really pathetic cover your ass apologies from both Bishop and the PGA) HERE.

FANTASY FOOTBALL

I'm nothing if not mediocre. Another week of splitting the two leagues I'm in with a 1-1 record for yet another week.

COLLEGE BASKETBALL

Mount Saint Joseph University - Last week's mention of Lauren Hill, the terminally ill player determined to play "One More Game" brought about a request to provide updates as the game gets closer. News about the game being moved to Xavier University's Cintas Center was followed by more news that the tickets were sold out in 30 minutes. It is a 10,000 plus seat arena! You can read the most recent report HERE.

Boston College Men - The season is still a couple weeks away but you can check out this brief interview with Olivier Hanlan. He talks about his work in the summer and why he came back for another season with the Eagles.

Missouri State - You can learn more about Lady Bear Tyonna Snow in this video piece. You can check out a shot of the Lady Bears basketball team from their Media Day event below.

Boston College Women - Nicole Boudreau and Kelly Hughes were the two players from the team that went to the ACC media day event in Greensboro, NC this past week. Along with coach Erik Johnson they met the media for season previews etc. You can see some shots of the two players from the event below.

Nicole:

Kelly

HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS

There was a ton of rain to deal with in the area this week but some game action did make it in.

Wareham Boys Soccer - The Vikings lost to Apponequet 8-1.

Wareham Girls Soccer - The team lost to Apponequet 3-0. They also had Senior Night this week. My former player Brianna is the only senior on the team so congratulations to her for battling through all her various injuries to make it back to the field this season.

Upper Cape Girls JV Soccer - Against Old Colony, the jayvees opened up a can of whoopass and beat the Cougars 9-0. Ann Marie had 2 assists in the game.

Wareham Field Hockey - The Vikings got knocked off twice this week with a 3-0 loss to Westport and a 4-0 loss to ORR. They are 2-14 on the season.

Wareham Girls Volleyball - The team got swept 3-0 in their match against Apponequet. The team held a free clinic for younger potential players. You can read about that HERE.

Upper Cape Varsity Football - Last Saturday, the Rams blew out Holbrook/Avon 38-14 and my girlfriend's son Connor (who is usually on the JV team) was able to make his varsity debut for a few plays. Way to go Connor!

Wareham Football - Despite talk of how the Wareham defense had been improving over the last couple of weeks, the Vikings were completely annihilated by Apponequet on Friday night. They lost 61-6. Apponequet had 502 yards of total offense while Wareham managed just 84 yards.

Upper Cape Girls Varsity Soccer - I mentioned last week that UCT soccer player Krystle found herself 1 goal shy of the 100 goal plateau after scoring a career high six goals in a game. You can read about that game in this Wareham Courier article. (All photos by Adam K. Ellis of the Wareham Courier.)

On Monday of this past week, the Lady Rams faced Bishop Connolly and Krystle did indeed get her 100th goal (plus one more for good measure). Unfortunately they lost the game 4-2. The loss eliminated the team from postseason contention. A 7-0 loss to Norfolk Aggie left them with a 6-10-1 record.

You can can see Krystle's 100th goal on a PK, along with brief comments from her and her coach in this video link.

Some photos from the Bishop Connolly game as well.

The 100th goal kick:

With her team:

CONGRATULATIONS KRYSTLE!

MISCELLANEOUS

Books - I picked up the new Jon Land thriller Strong Darkness this week. It is the latest in his Caitlin Strong series. I can't wait to dig into it.

TV - Here's the Pop-topia.com recaps at this week's new episodes of The Flash and Arrow.

Movies - The trailer for the new Avengers movie "Age of Ultron" was "accidentally" leaked a week early. And as expected, it set the Internet ablaze. You can check it out for yourself below.

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

Another Thursday another crazy week in the NFL. I went to the patriots-Jets game last Thursday heavy rain and rush hour traffic allowed for a 3 hour commute to Gillette Stadium which is normally maybe 40 minutes on a Sunday. It’s ok I talked to my neighbor who left and hour before I did and his commute was three hours and 20 minutes.

I’m convinced Thursday Night was made for ugly football the teams aren’t sharp and the games lack intensity. The Jets hung in there and I swear they ran the same three plays the whole game . Ivory inside, than outside and then old G. Smith would hit somebody down the seem.

I thought the Jets played the Patriots mucher tougher than anybody expected but than again nobody expected much. People are talking about Rex Ryan getting fired from my stand point the guy can coach and he has a little bit of fun and puts a little humor into as well I think a coach is only as good as what the player personnel guy has to work with it. Other than a solid offensive line and my man Ivory the Jets really don’t have a lot in the skill position area. Let’s face it Geno isn’t Tom Brady who can overcome sucha short coming and make a marginal receivers look good.

The talking heads  on the radio started the whole 3rd grade argument of whose better Brady or Peyton. I guess I like both guys, some how I think a team would be ok with either guy even with both guys in their late 30’s

That the same fo Peyton Manning, Aaron Rogers ,Drew Brees, and I may even through Andrew Luck in the mix. Speaking about Luck and the Colts. I watched them play the Bengals Sunday. I like the Colts on Defense they hit hard and they hit in the middle of the body. It was nice to see a team play some defense without the yellow hankie coming out.

In Dallas Demarco Murray is just fun to watch these days and I’m sur eit’s been a blast for Cowboys fans as well. The kid is the real deal.

NCAA

Dear Boston College

Your Senior Kick can't kick field goals. Your Freshman Kicker can't either. 

Did you ever think about using your Punter. After all he does in practice is kick footballs,

Then again that's all the other two kids do as well.

Speaking about Punters whatever happend to the Coffin Corner Punt?

MLB

The Royals finally lost a playoff game in Grand Fashion  on Tuesday Night. Losing 7-1.The Royals managed to get 7 of there own on Wednesday to tie the series at1 apiece. The Royals will have to take at least one of the next three in SF. I would like to see a couple of close games. We may not see Hunter Strickland in another starting role after letting his emotions get to himas he strred down Salvatore Perez.

 

NHL Update

Player flipped off the fans. Player got fined. Lanz traded Sully for player, what was Lanz thinking.

LIL Warrior Report

The boys got a W Saturday Night and Got crashed Sunday. Lil Lanz missed one from the point. Nexst week they start league play. The competition will be more even going forward. The boys should end up being alright.

Laser went out on the mound Saturday. the Young Lefty came in at Garbarge Time with an 11-1 lead. It wasn't pretty he left with 11-5 lead and runners on. He couldn't get the ball down in the zone. He said after the game" If those kids were just a little taller I would have hit the zone every time"

Zebra Tales

I was the Head Linesman Saturday and sometimes despite your best efforts they get you. I got rolled up pretty good Saturday on the first play from scrimmage. An end run came out my way took my position to let the play go buy me so I could trail . A kid came flying in  to make the tackle  he missed it but got the official (yes that was me) He got my leg good I finished the game bad bruise no breaks but I have been limping all week. It’s just the nature of the game..

 

OH Thursday
Category: FEATURED
Tags: MLB O's Royals Giants NFL Manning Rex

Oldharry here, back in town after the wife and I enjoyed a nice week away with my little girl.

My daughter and her hubby are a happy couple entering their third year of holy matrimony, they remind me of me and Renee back when we were kids…I mean when she was a kid and I was a fumbling 30 something about to marry this beautiful 22 year old …way over my head. We are closing in on 28 years and I am a lucky guy. My daughter’s hubby married over his head too and I made sure I let him know!

His family, living in Northern Maryland are Orioles fans, I thought I new what sports heartbreak was like

That is until I spent several days with these ardent Orioles’ fans. After advancing to the ALCS by dispatching the Angels these fans were talking World Series like it was a given.

And then the Royals happened…happened to be better. I watched  games 2,3 and 4 with my daughters in laws and there neighbors (most of them over the road truck drivers in this middle class hard working lunch pail neighborhood) sit and watch and hover on every pitch and I saw grown men cry. Big strong men, veterans of foreign wars, guys who make the economy move literally. Shedding tears for their beloved team that was breaking their sports hearts.

They have their 48” flat screen on the covered porch and they sit around a great fire pit watching the games… a fine set up.

I thought back to recent history and how lucky I am

        2012 last place

 2013 WS Champions              Red Sox sandwich

       2014 last place

The last time the O’s won was in 1985

After the final loss in the sweep by the Royals, one of the guys turned some of his anger and frustration towards me and reminded me that the Ravens beat the Patriots on the way to the SB a couple of years back. And that Flacco is already better than Brady…

My sensitive response was, “don’t go there for your own good, I don’t want to remind you that since this century began one city has a leg or two up on all of the others with Champions”

One guy from across the street, a guy with a deep woods West Virginia accent said “Hay, we won the SB in 2000 and again in 2012…”

One of the others, a guy named Dale said to him,” Gordy, his Pats won three and his Red Sox won three and seein he’s a Boston guy he probably follows hockey and them guys won a Cup and the basketball team musta won one or two so don’t rag him it a bee a mistake cause they got the hardware.”

We enjoyed the fire some beverages (some sweet homemade moonshinish shots were available but being a guy who likes to keep his wits and hold his tongue, I stuck to the beer and wine and wings. We talked families, fishing, driving and football…baseball was then off limits. Overall they were a great bunch of guys who just lost in four to the Royals.

 

New NFL Rankings

1. Denver           6-1 and back on top with that demolition of SF

2. Arizona          5-1 this is a good team

3. Dallas             6-1 Murray is the MVP

4. Philly              6-1 Defense isn’t bad either

5. San Diego       5-2 another division game following a close win in Oakland and close loss to KC

6. Green Bay       5-2 Is anyone playing like Rodgers/ Nelson/ Cobb

7. Detroit             5-2 Golden Tate has been a nice surprise

8. Indy                 5-2 Andrew Luck is a monster

9. Baltimore         5-2 I don’t trust them going forward

10. New England  5-2 Injuries may derail them with tough six game stretch ahead,

Five of them are listed above And here is the Patriots remaining schedule:

Chicago        3-4                     10/26

Denver          6-1                      11/2

BYE

@ Indy          5-2   Sun night   11/16

Detroit           5-2                     11/23

@ Green Bay 5-2                    11/30

@ San Diego  5-2   Sun night  12/7

Miami              3-3                   12/14

@ Jets              1-6                    12/21

Buffalo             4-3                   12/28

 

Milestones:

I bet you haven’t heard…

 Peyton Manning (510) passed Bret Farve (508)and moved into the lead in career TD passes.

Marino has 420, Brees 374, and Brady 372. My bet is that Peyton adds another 75 or so and nobody ever comes close to that.

 

Other NFL news, The Jets and Seahawks made a mid season move with Persey Harvin that will help both teams. Seattle gets rid of 7 million dollars and a guy who reportedly has had an altercation with all of his coaches and half of his teammates in just the past 3 months. The Jets get a dynamic offensive player to force opponents to game plan for a compliment to that run run running game. Harvin will make Geno better and I’m banking on Harvin getting a load of looks and touches to help put the wheels back on my Gab Fantasy football team.

The Jets season thus far was spelled out by Radadz on Sunday, go back and take a look if you missed it.:

Rex is on the hot seat, I personally like Rex and would miss him in the AFC East. This move by the Jets makes them a spoiler for the rest of the season. They won’t run the table but with a favorable schedule ahead they can still save Rex’s job.

One of my favorite Rex Ryan quotes was when asked a couple of years back at a press conference before a Sunday afternoon matchup with the Patriots how he matches up with Bill Belichick.

“We are two great athletes… we are, obviously solid. I think I could’ve held my own with him on the football field but I know he was also a lacrosse player. I would have no idea what I was doing playing lacrosse although hitting people with a stick has some appeal  to me so I guess I would do ok in that match up”

Sean Peyton quote post game:

Next question….ok next smart question

 

World Series

 

The Royals and the Giants opened the 2014 WS on Tuesday night in Kansas City.

The Giants took game one in Kansas City which kills my prediction of the home teams winning every game.

 

My son Middle Harry (I have 5 kids and my number three son is smack dab in the middle of five.)

He is also first born of my young bride which gives him all the benefits of being a first born and the curse of being the middle child.

He is gifted with his mother’s striking good looks and superior brain and his father’s love of sports, food and cooking.

This weekend he made his soon to be famous   “ bean free chili”

Here is the recipe, you won’t be disappointed.

-First you replace any thoughts of beans with 1.5 lbs of Apple Smoked Bacon.

Cook this any way you like but I prefer a large cast iron skillet.

Drain and set aside to dry and cool.

Next is the 4 lbs of ground beef, pre cook in a large cast iron skillet and use some of the leftover bacon grease…after all it’s good for you, it’s  bacon.

Now in a large cooking pot pour ½ cup of spring water (tap water has chlorine, ammonia and fluoride added…none recommended for consumption.) Put on a medium heat.

Then add 9 ripe Tomatoes from Dad’s garden harvest.

Puree them or have your father do that.

Stir as needed and it is needed.

Add 5 chopped green and red sweet peppers and two jalapeños

Have Dad slice 2 large onions from his garden, it will keep him out of the way for at least a few minutes

While Dad is crying over the onions pour in a Shipyard Pumpkin Ale and stir.

Add the onions and open a Shipyard for Dad and send him away to relax.

Add various spices including but not limited to crushed red pepper flakes, celery salt,

Paprika, ground black pepper, kosher salt,  2 heaping tablespoons of dark brown sugar, oregano…

Bring to a simmer

Get out Mom’s large crock pot, Put the beef and bacon in and pour the rest of the contents in. Stir it up with a good wooden spoon and leave it on a medium heat.

Taste often, stir often and it will be perfect in four hours.

Serve with football, beer and these guys.   CH

 

Later Gabbers, thanks for reading and commenting,

Thanks to IHM for filling in last week, a fine job as usual

Check out Lanz to my right

Q-o-t-D 10/20/14 Tags: MLB World Series

Who do you think will win the World Series?

 

 

Sunday Musings #169
Category: User Showcase
Tags: NFL NewEnglandPatriots AlabamaCrimsonTideFootball MLB CollegeFootball NewYorkLiberty NCAATrack CollegeBasketball HighSchoolSports

 

 

While busy running around all weekend long...

 

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter - @TheOneTrueJay

 

NFL

New England Patriots - The Patriots had a busy week as they played last Sunday against the Bills and then followed that up with the Thursday night game vs. the Jets.

The two straight AFC East divisonal matchups saw the Patriots win both games and take control of the division as they raised their record to 5-2.

Against Buffalo, the Pats won 37-22 but the win was a costly one as both Jerod Mayo and Stevan Ridley went down with what turned out to be season ending knee injuries.

In the first half of the game, the Patriots offense was just miserable. They managed just 101 yards of total offense. Thankfully, they woke up in the second half and rolled up nearly 300 yards of offense in that half. Tom Brady had a great game with 361 yards passing and 4 TDs. He spread the ball around to 10 different receivers in all.

Brandon LaFell had 4 catches for 97 yards and most importantly, two TDs. Rob Gronkowski caught 7 balls for 94 yards. Meanwhile, Tim Wright and Brian Tyms caught just 1 pass a piece, but each of them went for a score. Julian Edleman had 9 catches for 91 yards.

When the passing game is as effective as it was against the Bills, the Patriots can look positively unbeatable. But they are really going to have to lean on that passing game with the loss of Ridley. He was their workhorse back and while Shane Vereen can be effective out of the backfield catching passes, he is not the same time of runner Ridley is. As for the rest of the rotation of running backs, they haven't shown any reason for fans to expect them to do much better.

While their defense held the Bills to just 68 yards rushing, the Patriots run game was even worse. They had just 50 yards for the game, the rushing attack being thoroughly ineffective. It was a good thing the passing game took off in the 2nd half or the Patriots would've gotten beaten down quite soundly.

The defense also harassed Bills QB Kyle Orton all day long, they picked him off once and sacked him five times. Three of those sacks came from Rob Ninkovich. The defense also recovered a couple of fumbles along the way too.

I don't think anyone was really expecting the New York Jets to give the Patriots much trouble on Thursday night. They were 1-5 coming into the game and in what seemed to be complete disarray. They don't really have an NFL caliber quarterback on the roster and can't seem to get out of their own way most of the time.

But the team certainly hasn't quit on coach Rex Ryan and they showed up and gave the Patriots all they could handle. In the end it was a blocked field goal attempt, by Chris Jones, on the last play of the game (see below, Jones has the red glove on), that gave New England a 27-25 victory. It was a highly competitive and exciting game and one that FINALLY let the Pats fans exhale.

As they awaited the Jets, the questions facing the Patriots were 1. Can they have a balanced run game with Ridley out? and 2. With Jerod Mayo out, can the Patriots defense stop the run (when Mayo went out last year, that's when the Patriots run defense went into the crapper)?

The Jets got a surprisingly solid performance from QB Geno Smith (pictured below 1st) and the question about the Patriots defense was answered for one night at least when New York put up 218 total yards on the ground. Chris Ivory (pictured below 2nd) tallied 107 yards rushing for the Jets to go with four receptions out of the backfield.

 

What helped the Patriots win the game was their defense sacking Smith 3 times while New England's offensive line kept Brady upright for most of the game. The Jets defense was credited with 1 sack of Tom Brady, but it was a sack that saw Brady moving out of the pocket and then slid to give himself up.

Speaking of Brady (pictured below), he had 261 yards passing and 3 TDs on the night. And once again, he really had to get things done through the air because the other question facing the Patriots was answered by the team managing just 63 yards on the ground for the game.

Shane Vereen (pictured below) had 43 yards to "lead" the rushing attack, but he made his biggest impact catching passes. He had 5 receptions for 71 yards (also the team lead in that category), including a beautiful 49 yard diving catch for one of his two TDs on the night. You can check out the video below to see both scores.

But the Patriots still couldn't put the Jets away. It wasn't until forgotten man Danny Amendola (pictured below), who had been playing on special teams most of the evening, caught his first TD of the season that the Patriots took the lead for what would be the final time.

I love the two wins for the Patriots, but given that they came over relatively weak (despite playing solid games against the Pats) teams in the AFC East, I'm by no means convinced this turnaround means New England can consistently beat the better teams in the NFL this season. They are going to have to find someone who can run the ball to give their offensive playcalling some balance. If they don't, they are going to be in trouble if teams start paying more attention to their receivers. And if they can't run the ball, what happens to the offense when the passing game gets shut down too?

They also still need to figure out how to cut down on their penalties. They had 9 called on them against the Jets. I'm sure Bill Belichick can figure things out, he usually does. But the team is going to have to win games by guile as much as skill while they get things figured out.

One final semi-related Patriots note: There is a new book about former Patriots coach Bill Parcells coming out October 28th entitled Parcells: A Football Life. Sports Illustrated ran an excerpt from the book detailing the behind the scenes machinations that happened when Parcells quit as coach of the Jets and Belichick was supposed to take over. Football fans know what happened next, but you can read this article for a more in-depth look at what it took for Belichick to be able to be hired to coach the Patriots and change the course of the franchise.

Chicago Bears - Bears cornerback Charles Tillman is out injured this season, but this interview with Robert Klemko of the MMQB.com website gives you a great look at a player who's time in the NFL is winding down. A lot of other topics are covered as well.

Miscellaneous Article of Note - Former NFL player Irving Fryar spent the early part of his career in varying degrees of trouble. But he turned his life around becoming a really good receiver, and later became a preacher. But according to Greg Hanlon's lengthy article, there's been a big hiccup in Fryar's reformed life recently as he found himself in a lot of trouble. He now stands accused of bank fraud. You can read more HERE.

BASEBALL PLAYOFFS

The Red Sox are playing in the quest for the World Series championship this year, so I haven't really been paying much attention to the MLB Playoffs. But I wanted to take a quick moment and congratulate the Kansas City Royals (first playoff and World Series appearance in 29 years) and the San Francisco Giants (3rd World Series appearance in the last 5 years) for making it to what promises to be an electrifying conclusion to the baseball season.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

Boston College - Before I talk about yesterday's game against Clemson, I wanted to note that after the Eagles win over North Carolina State last week, Josh Keyes was named ACC Co-Linebacker of the Week while defensive end Brian Mihalik (pictured below) was named ACC Defensive Lineman of the Week.

As for the Clemson game, the Eagles looked to pull the upset over the 24th ranked Tigers, but ended up falling short. They lost 17-13 to drop to 4-3 on the year.

The BC defense got torn up for 398 total yards despite the relatively low point total for Clemson. But it seems more like the inability of the offense to put more than 13 points on the board is what really did the Eagles in. QB Tyler Murphy (pictured below) was just 8-19 passing for 108 yards. Granted, two of those completions were for touchdowns, but it was another game where his inability to pass the ball consistently hurt the team. It was even more evident because the run game was stifled this time around as well. Murphy led the team in rushing with just 55 yards. Meanwhile, Jon Hilliman, Myles Willis and Sherman Alston (who caught one of Murphy's TD strikes) combined for just 65 yards all together.

Alabama - With the Crimson Tide's upset loss last week, it seems to have become open season on Alabama. More than a few have opined that the team's run of dominance in the SEC West could be over. That led into yesterday's nationally televised game against Texas A&M where the Crimson Tide laid such an ass whipping on the Aggies that A&M coach labeled his team's performance "embarrassing". The final score: Alabama 59 Texas A&M 0. Yes, that's right a big fat nothing for the Aggies as Alabama improves to 6-1. Apparently, reports of their demise have been greatly exaggerated.

A&M's offense had been averaging 565 yards in total offense coming into the game, but got outgained a monstrous 602-172 by Alabama. It all keyed off of the resurgent performance of quarterback Blake Sims. He freely admitted that he hasn't played well in the last two games but yesterday, he threw for 268 yards and 3 touchdowns while adding 54 rushing yards. That rush total includes a beautiful 43 yard run for a TD that you just have to see to believe.

 

Alabama's defense was in razor sharp form on the day. They picked off Aggie QB Kenny Hill once while racking up 6 sacks on the day as well. They also held A&M to just 31 yards on the ground (Bama's backs had 298 yards).

Bama receiver Amari Cooper has been held in check the last couple of games but he had 8 catches for 140 yards and 2 TDs yesterday. He had a 45 yard TD and you can see his 24 yard TD reception below.

As for the run game, T.J Yeldon led the way with 114 yards and 2 TDs for Alabama. Derrick Henry had a solid day as well. He ran for 70 yards and a TD and had a 41 yard catch and run from Sims for a second score. You can see that below.

Mass Maritime - While the Buccaneers struggled in their 32-16 loss to Westfield State on Saturday, my ex-player E.J. continue to extend his hold over every receiving record at the school. He caught 12 more passes today for 103 yards and a touchdown. The loss drops MMA to 1-5 on the season overall, with an 0-4 conference record.

Georgia - I'm not talking about any game the Bulldogs played but rather the suspension of running back Todd Gurley for allegedly making money off of signing memorabilia. I know that a lot of people out there are incensed that the NCAA and its member schools can make billions of dollars off of these athletes who labor for peanuts (scholarships). I happen to agree with them.

But while the rules stink, I don't agree with the notion that Gurley violating them is somehow a noble thing. It isn't. He knew the rules going in. They may suck, he may hate the rules, but he agreed to them. You can and should lobby to change rules you don't like. But I'm a firm believer in not breaking the current rules governing your participation in college athletics. And if you do break the rules and get caught, I have no problem with an athlete's career being in jeopardy or even over.

The NCAA is a corrupt organization as it is currently set up. They need to be changed from the top down as the playing field of college/amateur sports evolves. But until that happens, an athlete that agrees to the idiotically draconian rules of the NCAA must abide by them.

WNBA

The big news out of the women's basketball league this week was the rather surprising move by the New York Liberty. The team declined to pick up the option on coach/GM Bill Laimbeer. They'll be looking for someone new to lead the team for next season.

The Liberty took a step back the last two years under Laimbeer, who was unable to recapture the magic he had as the head of the now defunct Detroit Shock. They didn't make the playoffs either season but I don't think anyone really saw this move coming.

Laimbeer, who I hated as a player, but really like as a coach and GM in the WNBA, commented about his time with the Liberty in this article.

So far, I haven't been able to find out if assistant coach Katie Smith is still with the team or has been officially dismissed. I do know that if she isn't back with the team, my fandom for the Liberty will be a thing of the past. I go where she goes. By the way, Smith's latest blog post on her KatieSmithBasketball.com site is about her dog Logan. You can check it out HERE.

COLLEGE SPORTS

Tennessee Women's Track - I know that I don't usually spend much time on college sports other than football and basketball, but this past week brought a story about the Lady Vols track team that just pissed me off. And I wasn't the only one as noted women's college sports writer Mechelle Voepel and men's college basketball analyst Jay Bilas also tweeted about the story.

It seems new track coach Beth Alford-Sullivan revealed herself to be thoroughly disreputable and not worthy of being a coach. She kicked athletes off the team who had done nothing wrong. This was two weeks into practices and the players she dismissed were ones she had praised publicly not two months before. The parent of one of the dismissed athletes took the story public.

The coach and the school are hiding behind the lame ass excuse of Sullivan not having done anything wrong and while they are technically right, that is a purely gutless counterpunch to the way they have completely screwed over these athletes. This story is yet another example of the atrocious level of corruption that abides in the current NCAA system. You can read more HERE.

Mount Saint Joseph University - And then you have a story like this one, where it shows what can be right and good about college sports. Lauren Hill is an incoming freshman on the women's basketball team. She's eagerly looking forward to playing her first college basketball game...because it will be her last game as well. And that is if she lives that long. Lauren is dying from an inoperable brain tumor. She was originally given two years to live, but things got worse and doctors told the family she wouldn't live past this December.

NCAA rules don't allow Division 3 teams to play games that count in the standings until mid-November. But even they were moved because they granted MSJU an exemption. With Hiram College agreeing to move the game to November 2nd, Lauren will dress in her #22 uniform and play "One Last Game". You can read more and see the local news report via this link. Yahoo! Sports also covered the story HERE.

HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS

Wareham Girls Soccer - The Vikings lost to Middleboro 3-1 to start off their week. The one positive in that game was the news that my former player Paige scored her first career goal. A 6-1 loss to Bourne dropped Wareham to 0-15 on the season.

Wareham Boys Soccer - A 2-1 loss to Middleboro (Eoghan had an assist on the goal), a 4-0 loss to Bourne and a 6-1 loss to Case dropped the team to 0-13.

Wareham Girls Field Hockey - Westport beat Wareham 9-0, then lost to Seekonk 5-1 on Friday dropping them to 2-12 for the year.

Wareham Girls Volleyball - The Vikings got swept 3-0 by Bourne and 3-0 by Case to fall to 4-13 for the year.

Upper Cape Girls Soccer - The Rams beat Blue Hills 2-1 early in the week. Friday night saw them beat Old Colony 6-1. While she isn't one of my former players, Krystle scored all 6 goals and raised her scoring tally for her high school career to 99 goals. Below is an Adam Ellis photo of Krystle (in white) on one of a couple of chances where she could've scored that 100th goal.

Wareham Football - In their annual Cranberry Bowl matchup, the Vikings came up on the short end of a 21-12 decision against ORR. They are now 1-5 on the season. Josh (pictured below) ran for 58 yards on the ground and had 28 receiving yards in the game. (Photos by Adam K. Ellis of the Wareham Courier.)

MISCELLANEOUS SPORTS ARTICLE

One of my favorite sportswriters is Boston Globe columnist Bob Ryan. It seems others hold him in high regard as well. You can learn more about Ryan by reading this Grantland.com profile.

MISCELLANEOUS

TV - If you didn't watch the season premiere of The Walking Dead last Sunday, wow did you miss a fantastic show. Seriously, go watch it on On Demand right now, you won't regret it.

As for a couple of other shows, you can check out the Pop-topia.com recap of The Flash Season 1 Episode 2 "The Fastest Man Alive" HERE. The recap for Arrow Season 3 Episode 2 "Sara" is available via this Pop-topia.com link.

I also added to my TV on DVD collection this week when I picked up Cagney & Lacey - The True Beginning. It is the second broadcast season of the show but the first with Sharon Gless in the role of Cagney.

 

Music - Country singer Glen Campbell is dealing with the effects of Alzheimer's Disease. The last song he ever recorded is called "I'm Not Gonna Miss You". You can check out the official video below. It's some moving stuff.

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