Tagged with "OLP"
Exorcise the Saban Ghost
Category: NCAA

I know this is long, but there are a few things I cover.  I give an overview of his time at both Michigan St. and LSU (with more detail for LSU of course) and then I talk about some things that went Alabama's favor that don't necessarily go in LSU's favor had Saban stayed all this time.

People talk about ghosts of Tiger Stadium (which turns 90 on Tuesday, by the way). Usually it’s positives like Billy Cannon’s Halloween Run in 1959, the 1988 Earthquake Game against Auburn, the five fourth-down conversions against Florida in 2007. There were a couple of other classics against those opponents and others.

There have also been negatives. One negative was when the Tigers went 30 years without a win against Alabama at home. Even though Bear was only there for about the first 1/3 of that time, it was like his ghost was still on the sidelines, pushing the Tide to victory in a way that it wasn’t even present in the state of Alabama.

Other than the national championship, one of the main things I’m grateful for from Saban’s tenure is the fact that he had two home wins over Alabama, the first of which ended that long streak. Neither win came against a great Alabama team, but that wasn’t important. Just like it wasn’t important how young this LSU team was or how well Ole Miss had played in previous games this season.

In January, it will have been ten years since Nick Saban coached an LSU team.

In January, it will have been ten years since Nick Saban coached an LSU team.

Under Miles, things against Alabama started even better. After winning two games over Mike Shula’s teams (I also find it kind of funny that Miami is the team Saban came from due to that last name), Miles won three of his first five games against Saban. If Miles had left after 7 seasons, he’d be known the guy who (unlike Saban) actually beat a number of good Alabama teams at LSU. (In addition to the three wins over Saban, LSU beat a previously unbeaten, 4th-ranked Alabama team in 2005.)

The ghost of Bear might be gone now, but now there is a living ghost in the collective psyche of LSU fans by the name of Nick Saban. Some still openly regret the fact that he’d left and wanted him to come back. I’ve heard from multiple sources there was a group of boosters who thought they could get Saban back if Miles were to leave. Others bitterly resent what they see as his betrayal of LSU by going to Alabama.

I believe like most supposedly supernatural phenomena, this ghost is present in our minds only to the extent we allow it to be, but it’s been really hard to shake since 1/9/12, that fateful day that ended what would have been LSU’s first undefeated season since 1958 (although LSU still won two more games in 2011 than it had in 1958). It also prematurely ended what should have been at least 24 consecutive months of bragging rights over the Tide and gave Alabama another national championship to rub everyone’s noses in.

To backtrack a bit, I want to note that very few people mind the fact that he went to Miami. He had rejected many NFL offers out of respect for LSU, and he was still of the age that it made sense to give it a try. Also Wayne Huizenga, the owner of the Dolphins, had bent over backwards to accommodate Saban’s every contractual demand.

The betrayal was going to Alabama. Alabama may not have ever put too much emphasis on beating LSU, but the same could not be said of LSU’s priorities. Of course, Alabama was not what it once was in 2007, but I think most LSU fans knew it would only be dormant for so long. For the catalyst of Alabama’s return to be Nick Saban was the ultimate slap in the face.

Both LSU and Michigan St. (his two stops before his brief experiment with NFL head coaching) fans took part in derogatory chants against Saban a couple of weeks ago. The Michigan St. fans did it when Chris Fowler interviewed Saban by satellite (if that’s even still the technology used), and the LSU fans did so in person when the Tide came to Tiger Stadium.

What annoys me more though is the perception by some that LSU and Michigan St. owe any success in the last few years to Saban. I wanted to set the record straight on some things, because Saban did not have anything close to the kind of improvement or level of consistency he’s had at Alabama since 2008.

I could probably write a book about all the things I like and don’t like about him and my observations of him as a person and a coach over the last 20 years (I clearly remember Michigan St. both before he took the job and during his time there), but I just want to focus on what exactly changed at Michigan St. and LSU when you look at the results on the field. I also want to consider the argument or suggestion that if he’d stayed at LSU, the LSU football team would be what Alabama has been over the last five seasons.

Saban’s last year at Michigan St. was a good one; but before that, his teams were just about as mediocre as they were under his predecessor there (although to be fair, 6-5-1 and 6-6 at least aren’t losing seasons, which his predecessor had suffered a couple of times). Still, Saban’s second-best season there was only 7-5.

I don’t want to dwell on Michigan St. too much — his last season there was 15 years ago — but in his first season gone, they went right back to 5-6, which they had finished the year before Saban started there. That was a long-term impact of approximately 0. In fact, you can go out even further. In the five years before Saban, Michigan St. won 48% of its games. In the five years after he left, Michigan St. won 48% of its games. What are fans today supposed to thank him for again? Other than memories of the 1999 Citrus Bowl?

It doesn’t take a great coach to have a single ten-win season in five years. I don’t think any major programs are beating down the doors of Will Muschamp, Larry Coker, Gerry DiNardo (Saban’s full-time predecessor), or even Gene Chizik, who has a national championship to his credit. Another example from the SEC, David Cutcliffe, took a long time to get back into a head coaching job despite having led Ole Miss to its best season in decades in 2003.

Saban did step things up in his fourth and fifth years at LSU, but the Tigers had a combined 12 losses in his first three years. The conference championship in 2001 was a fluke. How often has the SEC champion had three conference losses? How often does the SEC champion have a loss by 29 points at home?

LSU had worse in the previous two seasons than Michigan St. had had immediately before Saban but had two season of the previous four with wins of 9 games or more, whereas the last time Michigan St. had won even 8 games was five seasons before Saban got there.

LSU likely had better athletes to start with. After being a dormant program for 6 seasons, DiNardo did have some initial success. In his first season, he led the Tigers to only their second bowl win in 16 years, and it was over Saban’s first Michigan St. team. This was followed by a 19-5 record over the next two seasons, which included a win over defending national champions Florida in 1997. Also, Louisiana is more fertile recruiting ground for recruiting than the state of Michigan, and LSU isn’t “little brother” to anyone in the state of Louisiana.

It was not that difficult to have a spike in Louisiana recruiting. It also wasn’t the case that DiNardo couldn’t develop players, which he clearly did given some of the close results against good teams. He just lost the ability (partly due to turnover among his assistants) to manage the team to wins.

I’m sure that put a damper on recruiting in the 1998-99 offseason, but LSU would finish the 1999 campaign with a strong win over a ranked Arkansas team (with an interim coach), and the hope that the hire of Saban brought (probably as much as or more than Saban himself) kept the recruiting after the 1999 season from being a problem. If they could beat a ranked team with a no-name interim coach at the helm, the sky was the limit.

Nonetheless, Saban’s first three seasons were actually worse than DiNardo’s first three by record, and there had been no winning seasons that preceded any of the recruiting classes DiNardo worked with in that time.

Saban’s 9 wins in his final season were good in the context of the 12 years before his arrival, but I don’t remember Les Miles getting a ton of credit for following a national championship season with 8-win and 9-win seasons, respectively. Nor did he get a lot of credit for winning 33 games in the past three full seasons combined. Saban’s best three years at LSU together didn’t account for that many wins.

One of the other coaches I mentioned likely could have coached Saban’s 2004 team to 9 wins or more. Also, the loss to Georgia that season was reminiscent of the handful of bad losses Miles has had. So there was really only one season at LSU that was better than what had taken place at LSU the five seasons before Saban’s arrival.

As he did at Michigan St., he did raise the floor at LSU. When things didn’t go well, he went 8-5 and 8-4 instead of 4-7 and (starting) 2-8. That was an improvement, but just like with Michigan St., he only raised the ceiling in one year.

In both instances, those singular seasons caused his stock to go through the roof (continuing with the housing analogy), although he did decide to stick around at LSU another year anyway. Also, it’s not just wins and losses on their own. There were baffling losses under Saban. In his first season, he lost to Florida by 32, he lost to UAB (with only 10 points scored), and he lost to an Arkansas team (which had gone into the game with a losing record), 14-3.

It’s not good if you have three games where you score 10 or fewer points and four games where you score 17 or fewer.

The next year, they had the opposite problem. The offense was only held under 20 twice, but they allowed 44 to Florida, 25 to a bad Kentucky team, 35 to Ole Miss, 38 to Arkansas, and 34 to Illinois.

2002 was all over the map. They scored 14 or fewer four times, but they scored over 30 seven times. They allowed over 25 points five times.

2003’s team only had a single loss, but it was an ugly one: 19-7 at home against Ron Zook’s Gators. The Tigers struggled offensively at times against the better teams such as Georgia, Ole Miss, and Oklahoma. It helped that that team was able to play 6 teams with losing records and a I-AA opponent. Before the last four games of that season, LSU had not played two teams back-to-back that would finish with winning records. Contrast that with Miles’ last couple of seasons.

The 2004 team did not have a stellar offense, and LSU actually hurt themselves by trying to start JaMarcus Russell too soon. They nearly lost to Florida before Marcus Randall came off the bench to lead a comeback. They also needed Oregon St. to miss a few extra points in order to win the opener by 1 point in overtime. I already mentioned the Georgia loss that year.

LSU scored over 40 points three times that year (against teams with a combined 11 wins), but their highest point output otherwise was 27 against an Ole Miss team that finished 4-7. They only managed to score 24 apiece against the likes of Troy and Vanderbilt.

This was with Jimbo Fisher as the offensive coordinator. To apply the criticism Miles gets to Saban, he must have been holding the offensive coordinator back, right? It would seem to apply to Saban even more. In fact, I’m calling it right now: Cam Cameron is not going to be the head coach of a national-championship team in the next 10 years.

One could have also argued Saban only developed one “real” quarterback (Matt Mauck, whom he actually first recruited during his Michigan St. days) in those five years.

Saban was there when Russell came to LSU, but I’m sure that had more to do with Jimbo. Also, Russell didn’t really come into his own until the middle of his last year, which had nothing to do with Saban.

Point being, if you start from the perspective of looking to blame the head coach for everything, Saban could have taken a lot of blame as well as credit during his time at LSU. I think people just don’t realize how much their expectations have changed, which made every big win Saban had wonderful and every loss (or sometimes even close win) under Miles tragic.

So if we’re going to be assigning blame, we can blame Saban for causing LSU fans to forget what a losing season feels like. I still don’t think we have him to thank for the 7 double-digit-win seasons since he left, although of course he was instrumental for at least the first couple of them.

The LSU fans who do have this pathetic sense of longing for Saban are misguided. Alabama has certain advantages that LSU just isn’t going to have.

I don’t buy into conspiracies, but I think there is a natural degree of deference they get from recruits, from referees, from the media, from conference officials (who, perhaps not coincidentally, are based in Alabama), etc. Notre Dame has not had a sustained presence atop college football in 20 years. For Nebraska, it’s been about 15 years. So Alabama is the focal point of the historically great programs right now. There is just a different level of mystique for such programs. Nick Saban or not, that wasn’t going to be LSU.

People can’t accept that though. They just think that had Saban been here in 2009, 2011, and 2012, we would have had three national championships in those years rather than none. Maybe Saban wins in 2011 with either team (although even that’s arguable), but I’m doubtful about 2009 and 2012.

What if LSU (rather than Alabama) had been undefeated in 2009 and threw an interception on the game-clinching drive against Alabama. You think that gets ruled incomplete and LSU goes on to kick the field goal anyway?

LSU got some flak for winning in 2007 with two losses, but at least they won the conference, unlike Alabama in 2011.

Let’s say LSU loses a home game to Alabama like they did this year and everything else plays out like 2011. Do you think LSU gets a re-match over a one-loss champion of another conference? I doubt it.

LSU hasn’t gotten a soft touch at all in their slate against the SEC East even though their annual opponent (Florida) has been better than Alabama’s annual opponent (Tennessee).
The previous two seasons have had “bridge” schedules, temporary stop-gaps before they started off the new rotation, which was formalized before this season.

Alabama drew Missouri in 2012. Missouri played in the 2011 Independence Bowl, but they had an anticipated lull in adjusting to the SEC slate in 2012. In addition to the one good Muschamp team (which would only lose one SEC game), LSU had to play South Carolina, which had gone 11-2 in 2011. South Carolina would finish with the same record in 2012.

If you switch both SEC East opponents around, chances are LSU goes to the SEC Championship game instead of Alabama in 2012, even assuming Alabama still beats LSU in the closing seconds. Point being, I don’t think had Saban coached LSU that year (even if he had players just as good as the ones he had at Alabama), he would have beaten both Florida and South Carolina.

In 2013, LSU got Georgia, which had nearly beaten Alabama in the 2012 championship game, while Alabama played Kentucky, fresh off another losing season. Again, that scenario does not get reversed if Saban coaches LSU instead of Alabama.

It was an extra advantage for Alabama because what turned out to be their top challenger, Auburn, had to play Georgia also. Auburn had a favorable bounce and there were some unfortunate injuries to Bulldogs players between playing LSU and Auburn, but that could have easily been another Alabama divisional win (even with the Iron Bowl loss) owing in significant part to the schedule.

A Saban team might have won another game last season at LSU, but if they don’t end up winning two more, they don’t win the championship anyway.

So all things considered, maybe Saban wins one more championship than Miles did over the last 10 years (that’s right, this is the 10th LSU season after Saban). On the other hand, maybe they don’t win in 2007. You might blame Miles for the OT losses, but maybe Saban loses games to Florida and Auburn (there were some gutsy calls Saban may not have made) and they either lose a third somewhere along the way or someone else wins the division. So it could even be the same number of championships.

I don’t mind the idea of looking at the unmatched level of success Alabama has had over the better part of the last seven seasons (the only time a program had done anything like that in my memory was Nebraska in the mid-1990s) and wanting to match that, but just get over the fact that the head coach there coached LSU 10 years ago. That goes for people who want to insult him and those who wish he’d stayed (or fantasize about his return) alike. For those who persist in being hung up on Saban, at least get your facts right.

This is my previous post here at the Gab. I included a picture of Saban with Jimbo Fisher, who was an assistant throughout Saban's time at LSU.

Like a Kick in the Face, Football's Back
Category: Daily Blog 2.0
Tags: NFL opening weekend Patriots Dolphins Hawks Racism

Like a kick to the face, the football season finally got started.  With an hour to go before kickoff, we went food shopping…I’m pretty sure everyone else in the local area was doing the same thing – I’ve never seen the parking lot so full.  We blasted through - $175 worth of groceries – in 35 minutes…and waited in line.  We got home with 1 minute to spare…and Mrs. really appreciated the fact that I left everything on the counter and sat down in front of the TV.

The Patriots played an abomination of a game.  Nothing like pissing away a game – the first game of the season.  THE game everyone’s waiting for.  For a while they looked good, but then…not so much.  I’ll chalk it up to game time heat, but there was something definitely missing here.  Next week, they get to face Matt Cassel, the man who led the Pats to 11-5 in 2008 while Brady recovered from a season ending injury.  Interestingly enough, it was the Chiefs who knocked Brady out for the year, and it was the Chiefs who landed Cassel.  That would bedevil them for the next 4 years – don’t mess with Bill Belichick. 

Another former New England quarterback, Brian Hoyer, brought Cleveland back from a blowout to force Pittsburgh to win their game on a last second field goal.  It’s a shame the Cleveland defense returned to form and allowed that final drive.  Mean while, “Johnny Cleveland” was all “Johnny Bench” (wah wah wah).   Now, that said, Hoyer was showing some promise last year before he was injured – making the firing of Coach Chud very confusing to most people, until you get some flavor of what was going on behind the scenes in Cleveland. 

Josh Gordon, currently sitting at home on suspension, may get a chance to play this year if the NFL and NFLPA can agree on a new drug policy.  Apparently, the front office was concerned enough about him last year that they were looking to trade him – a move that was ixnayed by ownership, but a move that shows what a mess the front office was.  Is it possible that Haslan actually knew what he was doing?

I wonder just how long Dallas can stick with Tony Romo.   This is his 9th season starting.  He has exactly 1 playoff win.   He’s a good QB, I mean a career 95.8 rating is good.  But he’s 63-46, 57%.  Three straight 8-8 seasons.  He’s only good.  I don’t get it.  I’m just glad he’s not my quarterback.

Lots of racism, real and imagined, going on in the sports news this week.  We have Hanna Strong, a Syracuse senior, soccer mid-fielder, and Western MA native,  being suspended and now under investigation for her drunken rant on an undated video,  calling the videographer derogatory terms for both homosexual and African American.  “Don’t record me saying this…” Ooops.  It happened sister.  You don’t actually get to tell people they can’t record you making an ass of yourself.

Next we have Bruce Levenson saying he has too many black people coming to Atlanta Hawks games.  Well, kind of.  What he actually seems to be saying is that he doesn’t have enough affluent people coming to the game, his problem is the way he said it – something he both acknowledged and self-reported to the NBA.  What this really comes down to is that I’m pretty sure he just wanted out of owning the team…or that he was concerned that someone else would out him and he decided to pull the trigger.   A “Zero tolerance policy against racism” apparently includes self-reporting, a really interesting step – I mean who does that?

Rather than leave you on that note, I give you this as a reminder that sports is supposed to be about more than “me, me, me.”  Let’s leave it to this young Red Sox fan to reinforce that message.

O H Thursday
Category: FEATURED
Tags: Lowland gorillas Miami Dolphins Incognito Martin


And now for the oldest trick in the book:

 lookith over there…

Ha…….Madeth thou look!


So endith the trick.


I don’t know if I’ve ever mentioned that I hate snow, but just in case you didn’t know

I do hate snow

The sequence of the past 6 days looking out my side door


Pick up a good book to read and expand your horizons without an electronic device…except maybe a light bulb.

Random acts of kindness are good but frequent acts of kindness are better.

Another word to the wise from one of the guys:

Try this featured Beer at Harry’s

…Tuckerman’s Altitude, a fine Sticke Alt. It’s advertised as a beer that has attitude.

This beer from a small brewery in Conway N H called Tuckerman, named after the Ravine of the same name, is perfect for sitting by the fire eating venison sausages smothered in onions and peppers.

    Be careful not to guzzle or this baby will take you down. I generally drink 12 oz. of water before I open my Tuckerman to be sure I’m well hydrated. The full flavor makes this a sipping beer and the 7.3 % alcohol content makes it sneak up on you. It pours out of the bottle about the same color of black coffee but with a frothy head and it goes down just as smooth as silk.

The Altitude is a limited release beer and not always easy to find.

    When you can find it, expect to spend between $13 and $17 a six pack.


Spring is right around the corner


Incognito and Martin

Hazing, bullying and being an ass.


I’m sure all of you have an opinion on the Incognito/Martin situation…believe it or not…I do too.


What bothers me the most about this situation isn’t the bullying and hazing that went on over a period of time but the fact that NOBODY intervened.

OK Maybe Martin and the other two hazed and bullied should have stood up for themselves…who knows why they didn’t. (Beeze has a theory)

But, this happened in plain sight of the rest of the team and coaches and no one intervened!

From my perspective…somebody should have intervened.

I’m can be an intervener…is that a word? It's just in my nature...

What I’m saying is that sometimes I can’t mind my own business and it has gotten me in trouble in the past. This slightly off center nose I sport on my face is the direct result of an intervention several years ago.

I was walking to my car after visiting a friend at a local hospital. I was startled by commotion to my left and then a woman screaming “get away from me, don’t touch me again you ass…get away Sam or I’ll call the police.

In turn the man called Sam grabbed her by the arm and slapped her across the face.

Without much in the way thinking I ran over and grabbed the guy and said leave her along you piece of shit.

He swung a meaty right hand and clubbed me in the face to which… this Irish winger dropped his proverbial gloves and promptly broke Sam’s arm and then returned the broken nose favor he had bestowed on me.

My Dad, who grew up in the tough Dorchester section of Boston during the 30’s and 40’s, always told me sometimes wining a fight means arms need to be broken”.

It’s relatively easy if you know what to do with the bone structure at the wrist where the radius, ulna and the eight carpal bones all come together to form that unique and flexible joint…it bends back and forth with amazing flexibility…but bend it to the side with as much force as you can muster…and then bend it some more…something will pop and the pain will stop most men in their tracks.

This guy went screaming towards the hospital and she looked at me and said,…not thank you sir… but

“who do you think you are…you had no business in this”

The police came, questions were asked, answers were given, witnesses gave statements,

 I was sued.

A couple of months later this guy Sam ended up getting arrested for domestic assault and my case was quickly settled. A few thousand dollars in legal fees and a distinguished nose job later… I know,

Given the same circumstances, I would do the same.

So why…why didn’t one, just one of the Miami Dolphins or coaches intervene.

No excuses should be accepted.

Were they afraid of Incognito? Were they afraid for their jobs or the respect of the room?

Is this the “old boy network”

No excuse will work for me.

Incognito and his accomplices are guilty of the assault…Martin was not up to defending himself

but everyone who saw and heard and did nothing is guilty of being a guilty bystander.

Don’t be a guilty bystander

You may end up in a ditch or getting body slammed by a lowland gorilla….

Thanks for humoring me by reading today and don’t forget to check out my fellow snowed in Bostonian, Lanz over there to the right

Mo's #Unapologetic Round up
Category: Daily Blog 2.0
Tags: Jeter Yankees Dolphins Incognito Barbie

#unapologetic.  I get to go to some sexy places for work.   It’s all quite glamorous.  Some folks jet set to Abu Dhabi, sail off to do some off shore banking.  Me?  I go to Herkimer County, New York.   The good news is that it’s not likely to snow.  The high will be a balmy 21 with a low of 14.  I told you, it’s sexy as hell.

It’s almost as sexy as the new Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition.  Now, come clean.  Who wouldn’t want a fine piece of Barbara Millicent Roberts rocking that 1959 vintage swim suit?  Which is just my point here – why would SI team up with Mattel to cross promote Barbie?  Just strikes me as wrong on so many levels.  You're used to seeing Beeze posting shots of swimsuit models - I almost feel like I'm working his side of the street here.

Jeter Retires, No A-Rod to Darken His Sendoff.  Derek Jeter announced this past week that he’s retiring at the end of the season.  $253-Million in career earnings will let a guy in his 30’s call it quits on his own terms.  There’s nothing for him to prove, and he will go out one of the all time great Yankees.  So, why announce so far in advance that 2014 is the end of his career.   He made $17-million to play in 17 games last year, he had a player option for just over $9-Million for this year.  You could argue that in announcing his retirement, he got himself a $12-Million deal for 2014.  He’s made a quarter Billion dollars - $3-Million more isn’t likely to be the answer.

Here’s my guess.  It was only a few weeks ago now that Alex Rodriguez dropped his law suit and agreed to accept the 162-game suspension.   It’s no secret that the two of them really don’t like each other, so perhaps it’s an acknowledgement that he either can’t or doesn’t want to play at the level he has played and since he doesn’t really have to, there’s no reason to play out the string.  With A-Rod out of the picture for this year, he can go out as the leader of this team, without A-Roid obscuring the sunshine.  Rodriguez has another 3 years or so on his deal, so even if Jeter could play he’d be second fiddle to Rodriguez for the rest of his career.  This gets that giant distraction out of the way, and Jeter can lead this team for the last time with everyone bending over backwards to make sure it happens.  That’s why he’s retiring, and that’s why we know about it.  Ryan Dempster, on the other hand, has some "stuff going on," to walk away from $13-Million this year, pitching for the World Champions with a good chance to repeat.  Why bring him up here?  He's probably one of Jeter's favorite Sox players.

Behaving Badly.  The “Wells Report” – the NFL’s investigation of the Miami Dolphins Richie Incognito/Jonathan Martin affair – was released Friday.  144 pages, 100-odd interviews and the result is apparently quite clear: Mike Pouncy, John Jerry, and Richie Incognito are just pukes. Pouncy catches my attention for having posed with his brother wearing the “FREE HERNANDEZ” gear.   The players were busy harassing teammates, and the coaching staff were apparently willfully blind to it or in one case an active participant in it. According to the Boston Globe, former Patriot/Steeler/Seahawk Chad Brown said, “Every locker room at every level I’ve been in had hazing, tough jokes, etc., but I’ve never seen anything like the Dolphins stuff.  Reading that stuff is crazy. Not sure how those guys thought that was going to end well.”

Of course Martin played the victim role until he couldn’t any more.  His unwillingness or ability to say something empowered Incognito to continue.  Striking to me is the leaderships refusal to do anything about it.  In any other workplace, there would be all kinds of civil suits.  Consider this for a moment: courts generally apply a rule of thumb that punitive damages can’t exceed $150,000:$1 of actual damages.  Had Martin gone that way (he still could, that clock is still ticking), with a good lawyer he could get himself some big heap punitive damages against the Dolphins, the coaching staff individually, and the NFL.  The only party here that mitigated their exposure was the NFL – they acted quickly to investigate.  The Dolphins were too busy asking Martin to “Man Up.” 

Assuming Incognito will not be with the Dolphins next season, could you imagine a situation in which he’s on a roster with Michael Sam?

 Meanwhile, Sam’s announcement has even affected the CFL – even though he’s not planning to play in Canada.  The CFL has fined a couple of players for making comments about the first openly gay NFL prospect.  Beyond taking that step, the league says it’s entering into a partnership with a gay rights group.  Interesting to me that the CFL is taking such a proactive step. 

Have a great rest of the week!  

Thank you for an enjoyable year fellow Gabbers
Category: FEATURED
Tags: NFL Dolphins Bronco's Chiefs Patriots Fantasy FB


The Marines are coming to save us once again!


I look forward to Christmas with family gatherings mainly with my great in-laws… I love this time of year.

The sky from the Harry residence this past Monday just prior to snow


This is also the winding down of the NFL season, teams are scrambling for their playoff positions in some cases and their playoff lives in others. What seemed almost certain last week… has been turned upside down this week.


Seattle is settled in as the one in the NFC and will get a pair of playoff games at home

Other than that the rest is all up in the air.

New Orleans or Carolina will take the 2nd and fifth seeds but order is TBD.


The Lions had a shot at taking control of the North but couldn’t put Baltimore

(6 FG’s) away. Baltimore couldn’t finish a drive vs Detroit.

 The loss lets Jake (Josh or Jerry) Mc Clown and his Bears back into the picture.

Dallas could have taken control of the East but couldn’t put Matt Flynn’s Packers away and now the Eagles are in the drivers seat.


The 49ers should be able to hold on to a wildcard slot unless Arizona wins out and squeezes in.


The AFC had three of four division leaders losing and opened the door of opportunity to teams we thought dead a few weeks back. The Bronco’s loss opening the door for the Patriots to take control of the 1 seed.

 The Pats responded with a loss to Miami when Tom Brady’s magic without Gronk took the week off. Miami at 8-6 has only the Jets and Bills left and can get to 10-6 and a shot at a playoff spot.


Cincinnati had the North in their hip pocket but got surprised by the Steelers and missed a chance to hop over New England into the two seed. Now they have to try to outlast Baltimore who they must face on the last regular season game. Baltimore 8-6 faces the 10-4 Patriots in Baltimore Sunday at 4:25PM.

Tom Brady has always had his troubles with Baltimore, He is 4-3 since 2007 against the Ravens with a QB rating in the 70’s.

But this is not the same Ravens team that hoisted the Lombardi last February no matter what praises Belichick heaps on them this week.


Kansas City looked strong again when not playing a team named the Broncos and should at least end up with the 5 seed.

As it stands now with the remaining games:


1.  Seattle                         Arizona           Rams

2. New Orleans                Carolina          Bucs

3. Chicago                        Eagles             Packers

4. Eagles                           Bears              Cowboys

5. San Fran                       Falcons           Arizona

6. Carolina                        Saints              Falcons

On the outside looking in

Cardinals                       Seattle                   San Fran

Packers                          Steelers                 Bears

Lions                             Giants                    Vikings

Cowboys                       Redskins                Eagles



1. Denver                       Texans                  Raiders

2. Patriots                       Ravens                  Bills

3. Bengals                       Vikings                 Ravens

4. Colts                           Chiefs                    Jags

5. Chiefs                         Colts                      Chargers

6. Ravens                        Patriots                  Bengals

On the outside looking in

Miami                             Bills                       Jets

Chargers                         Raiders                   Chiefs  


These are the Heisman top three for this year and they probably will go 1-2-3 in the draft. The big question is

which sure fired star does Houston take? 


my money's on Moe Howard, take charge leader with loads of upside!


In the Family fantasy league I was defeated in the finals by 16 points by #3 son Chris

Congrats son…wait till next year!


In the you gab league I’ll be facing Q and her Steel City Dawgs as we battle for that coveted 5th place trophy…good luck Q.

that I heard looks like this:

That’s all for this week, I’ll be on hiatus for the next two weeks with very busy family schedules but I’ll check in from time to time to read the fine facts and opinions put up by my fellow gabbers. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all.                

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