Tagged with "nfl"
Musings From The Hoodwood 2-28
Category: Daily Blog 2.0
Tags: NFL NBA NCAA

Due to technical difficulties the column will be changing several times...your patience is appreciated

Hot Times?in Daytona!

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Greetings from the Hoodwood, where the locals were watching tapes of previous slam dunk contests instead of whatever that was supposed to be posing as a dunk contest this past Saturday.

I don't know what to think about the NBA All-Star game. The two teams clown more or less for about three quarters and then realize that they get an extra $25K for winning and decide to play hard. Ive said it before, make the game winner take all and you can better best believe that those cats will play all out.

As usual a game can be a game without the whining of one Kobe Bean Bryant. Yes he has a phenomenal game. And its hard to believe he has been in the game for 16 seasons, but there are times that he acts like a bratty diva than a grizzled veteran. Yes, the foul by Dwyane Wade was a little harder than expected with the unexpected results of Kobe?s nose getting broken, but it seemed to me like he was just way too ?insulted? by what was clearly an accident. Ive always thought of Kobe as a basketball snob, a pretty boy who's elitist mentality never gained much traction with the street ballers, the whole Kobe System commercials are humorous but I think that plays right into his ?I?m better than you mentality. Anyhoo, the all star game was its usual no defense everyone try to get theirs game. The East fell way way behind then charged back to get close and then with the East down by two with under 30 seconds to play. Guess who had the ball? LeBron. and guess who was guarding him? Kobe. And Kobe was daring him to shoot. Do you think he would have done that to DWade? Or Kevin Durant? Or hell even Jeremy Lin? You could read Kobe?s lips saying ?Shoot the fuckin? ball!? Kobe for all his elitist tendencies, is a stone cold assassin at heart. He is and Bron isn?t. So Bron takes more shit for passing up a chance to cap a great comeback. Add to boot, he turned the ball over with a bad pass that Blake Griffin intercepted. His two free throws iced the game. DWade's three at the buzzer was off and the West held on for a 152-149 win. I could just hear Skip Bayless nutting on himself knowing that he would have a chance to rag on LeBron?s unwillingness to shoot the big shot in the end. I agree with Michael Smith of ESPN who said that Bron Bron was in a no win situation. Shoot the shot and make it, it?s a meaningless shot in an exhibition. Shoot the shot and miss, its just another exhibit in why Bron Bron isn't clutch. Pass the ball like he did and its because hes scared to shoot. Pity poor Bron Bron?poor Bron Bron.

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Could the Colts go with RG3?

Naaahh, you know and I know that the Colts are taking the franchise Andrew Luck with the first pick in the draft this spring. You know it like you knew that they were going to take Peyton Manning first in the 1998 draft (Shit has it been that long ago???) But unlike the 98 draft where the consolation prize was dicey in Ryan Leaf, a player I never thought that much of, this year the ?consolation prize? is only the 2011 Heisman trophy winner Robert Griffin III who as been wowing them in Indy with breathtaking skill reps, flawless interviews and speed that running backs and wideouts are jealous of. Now the question isn?t if the Colts will take Luck, but who will maneuver to snag Griffin. The Rams with the #2 pick have no interest in the Griffin hunt as they have their own young franchise quarterback in Sam Bradford but seem to be interested in offers for that coveted number 2 pick in the draft. RGIII looks like he could as good (or better than?) Luck. That of course remains to be seen over the next 12 or so years. By then we will, some kid who is presently a? 4th grader out of Cedar Falls Iowa and Heyward, California will be competing for the #1 picks. Peyton Manning will be in the Hall of Fame, Griffin and Luck will be finishing up Hall of Fame careers and I will be writing this column, reminiscing.

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Spec Sheet

My apologies for missing the sheet on Friday. Some technical difficulties have prevented my timely posting, which we cant have with the games getting so crucial.

Atlantic Coast?
(Conference Class-Power)?
Solid:?Duke, North Carolina, Florida State?, Virginia?
Work to do:?North Carolina State, Miami
Skinny on the ACC: Let keep it real here, NC State is blowing their chance to make it. Fading badly at the worst time, the Wolfpack had three chances to garner a signature win and went 0-3. They need to win out and at least get to Saturday in Atlanta to get a real shot at a bid. Miami is hanging tough and with a win over Florida State strengthened their bid chances though

Key Game:?Duke at Wake Forest 7p Tuesday ?The Dukies are road warriors but had better take care that they don?t look past Wake at their showdown with Carolina.

?Projected Bids: 6?

Atlantic Ten?
Conference Class-Mid Major?
Solid:?Temple, Saint Louis
Work to do:? UMass, St. Joes
The A-10 Spec is:?Temple is still safe but plenty annoyed after losing to neighborhood rival St. Joes up on Hawk Hill over the weekend. Im still wary of the Billikens but I think that they garner the bid. St. Joes has their signature win and now just was to keep winning and they will get more notice.

Key Games:?Xavier at Saint Louis Tuesday 8p The Billikens want to get on the list and keep the Muskies off.

Projected Bids:?2?

Big East?
Conference Class-Power?
Solid:?Syracuse, Georgetown, Marquette,?Louisville, Notre Dame, Cincinnati

Work to do: ? South Florida, West Virginia, Seton Hall?
Big East Skinny: Syracuse locked down the #1 seed for the Big East tourney (ho-hum) I still think Cincy is safe despite a terrible game in Tampa following a solid win over a despied regional rival. Seton Hall got a needed win over Georgetown then followed it up with a real stunk job loss against Rutgers. This are the kind of needless losses that fringe teams like the Pirates need to avoid. These aren?t similar losses: The Bearcats lost on the road to a tough team trying to solidfy its position, the The Pirates lost to Rutgers at home on Senior Day, ?

Key Game:?South Florida at Louisville Wednesday 7p?If the Bulls want to stay in contention for one of the coveted four double byes in the Big East tourney winning at the Yum! Center will be crucial.

Projected bids: 8?

Big Ten?
Conference Class-Power?
Solid:?Michigan State, Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio State, Indiana,

Looking Good: Purdue
Work to do:?Northwestern, Iowa

The word on the Big Ten is: Has Purdue done enough? The win at Crisler may have put them over the top. I wish I could say the same about Northwestern? who may need to get at least to Sunday if not win the whole shooting match to garner a serious look. Iowa may be too far out to may noise

Key Games: Ohio State at Northwestern Wednesday 8:30p ?If the Wildcats are serious about their first ever NCAA bid, beating the Bucks is an absolute must.

Projected Bids:?6?

Big 12?
Conference Class-Power?
Solid:?Kansas, Baylor, Missouri, Kansas State, Iowa State

Looking Good:
Work to do:? Texas

Skinny from the heartland: Kansas won another Big 12 regular season crown with a thrilling comeback win against the soon departing Mizzou Tigers. Yes Iowa State fans your Cyclones have done enough to get to the Dance. Just a minute Texas fans, you haven't done nearly enough and as long as your team hovers at .500 in conference with no real quality wins (That?s what separate Kansas State?so shaddap!) you will stay right where you are. Waiting and hoping for a break

Key Game: Oklahoma at Texas Wednesday 9p The Longhorns need this win to stay at the .500 mark because they aren?t winning in Allen on Saturday.

Projected Bids:?5?

 

Conference USA 
Conference Class-Major 
Solid: Southern Miss

Work to do: Tulsa, Memphis, Central Florida
Oh Say Can You C-USA Spec: Memphis is trying to hold off Southern Miss, UCF and Tulsa to get the #1 seed in the C-USA tourney. I think the Tigers are the only bona fide tourney team. The other bid is a hot scramble between the fading Eagles and the surging Knights & Hurricane

Key Game: UCF at Memphis Saturday 9p Central Florida can make the CUSA scramble that more chaotic with a win in at the Fed Ex Forum.

Projected Bids: 2


Horizon 
Conference Class-Mid Major 
Solid: Valpo,
Work to do:  Cleveland State,  Butler, Detroit

Spec on The Horizon: The Crusaders are the top dog here but there are at least three other teams that could take the title. The problem for them is that unless Valpo gets beat the road to the NCAA tourney bid goes through Valpo’s Gym

Horizon League Championship Tourament: Campus Sites 1st Round 2nd Round and Semifinals Valapariso, Championship at Highest Remaing seed Feb 28-Mar6th

Projected Bids: 1 

IVY 
Conference Class-Small 
Solid: Harvard 
Work To Do:  Penn 
Spec on the Ivy Vine: Just when the Crimson are getting this close to locking the Ivy down, they take a stunning loss to the Penn Quakers and only lead by a half game. Keep in mind that the Ivy has no conference tourney. The Crimson can win out and still be sweating for should the Quakers win out there will be a one game playoff for the title.
Key Games: Harvard at Columbia; Brown at Penn Friday at 7p With an extra game to play the Quakers control their own destiny, win out and get at very worse a chance to play for the Ivy’s NCAA bid. The Crimson need to win and get help to avoid this scenario unthinkable three weeks ago

Projected Bids: 1 


Missouri Valley 
Conference Class-Mid Major 
Solid: Wichita State 
Work to do: Creighton
Missouri Valley Skinny: The Shockers are the top seed and all sign point to a Sunday showdown for the title. But everyone knows why they call it Arch Madness, this conference tourney long has a rep for wild games and shocking upsets.  Don’t sleep on the Valley 5 teams finished 9-9 and will make the tourney filled with great play.

Missouri Valley Conference Championship:  March 1-4 Scottrade Center St. Louis

Projected Bids: 2


Mountain West 
Conference Class-Major 
Solid: New Mexico, San Diego State, UNLV 
Work to do: Colorado State
Spec from the Mountains: There  is three way logjam at the top of this conference. But all these teams are safe. Colorado State’s bid to force their way into the conversation may have died with the loss to San Diego State. The jockeying for the best seeding in the conference tourney starts in earnest now.

Key Game: UNLV at Colorado State Wednesday 10p The Rebels are in a pitched fight for the best seed in the MWC conference tourney and have no time to entertain the Rams fledgling hopes.

Projected Bids: 3 


Pacific 12 
Conference Class-Power 
Solid: Cal, Washington, Arizona Oregon

Work to do:  Stanford, Colorado, UCLA
Spec from the left coast: Just when you thought Cal was home free they stumble badly to Colorado. Now Washington looks to be in line for the top seed in LA. Arizona and Oregon are right there but Im hesitant to keep Colorado or Stanford in the solid side and not include UCLA

 Key Game: Washington at USC Wednesday 10:30p  (FOX Sports Net) If it looks like a trap game, it very well could. The Huskies need to avoid looking ahead to playing UCLA or the Pac-12 tourney and blast the weak Trojans

Projected Bids: 5



Southeastern 
Conference Class-Power 
Solid: Kentucky, Vanderbilt, Florida, Mississippi State 
Work to do: Alabama, LSU

Spec is Down South: The Wildcats are the only real bankable team in this conference, everyone else? Meh… Vandy, Florida and Mississippi State all are lurching to the SEC tourney in UK’s massive wake. Could the SEC only send 4 this year???

Key Game: Florida at Vanderbilt Tuesday 7p Coming off a horrid loss to Georgia, the Gators now have the Commodores hard on their heels trying to gain that #2 seed and stay on the opposite side of the SEC bracket away from UK

Projected Bids: 5


Western Athletic 
Conference Class- Major 
Solid: Nevada
Work to do:  New Mexico State,
Spec on the WAC: Still a one-bid league as of now with Nevada being the league bully, but the Aggies are making things quite interesting.

Key Game: New Mexico State at Nevada  9p Thursday If the Aggies pull the upset in Reno they will garner some serious consideration. Lose and the title run goes through the Wolf Pack

Projected Bids: 1

West Coast 
Conference Class- Mid Major 
Solid: Gonzaga, St. Marys 
Work to do:  BYU, Loyola Marymount
West Coast Spec: The WCC has the goofiest tourney bracket in college basketball. Gonzaga and St. Mary’s have byes all the way to the WCC semis. If Portland or Santa Clara want to win the WCC they have to win 5 times in five days…yikes

West Coast Conference Championship: Feb 29-Mar 6 Orleans Arena, Las Vegas

Projected Bids: 2 

 

Phat Dap/Head Slap

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Phat Dap

To the City of Sacramento who will be keeping the Kings after striking? a deal with the Maloof Brothers. It was no big secret that the Kings were looking elsewhere to move and possibly going to Anaheim. But the city led by former NBA all-star? and current mayor Kevin Johnson negotiated hard and held off blatant attempts by Anaheim and Seattle to pounce on the possibility of the team moving. The Kings have moved twice before, starting in Rochester NY, then moving to Cincinnati from 1957-72 then on to Kansas City with some games in Omaha then on Sacremento in 1985. Long known for its faithful and long suffering fans Cali?s state capital has supported the Kings and will get to keep them for a good while longer.

Head Slap

To the Delaware State fans. When Tahj Tate dunked in a missed shot with 0.4 seconds to play to give the Hornets a 72-71 lead over Morgan State. The Delaware State fans mistakenly thought that the game was over and stormed the court in the belief that the Hornets had clinched the MEAC regular season title. Not only was the game not over, the officials gave Delaware State a technical. Morgan State got two technical free throws and won the game. To make matters worse. Savannah State beat North Carolina A&T and clinched the MEAC title outright. Head Slap to fans that jump the gun.

Until Next Post Fellow Sports Fans!

Monday Moaning 2-27-12
Category: FEATURED
Tags: AHL NHL Lake Erie Monsters Cleveland Browns Robert Griffin III Little Beeze Michael Symon Rocco Whalen Douchebags NFL

 
Here we go again...Some how the stomach flu has attacked my house again...The Little Beeze started puking Friday night...Sunday afternoon the baby and our oldest daughter started...Then Sunday night the Mrs....Me, so far only blew a little mud...But I'm fearing the worst...How did this happen again...I blame the kids and their school...Their school that they will be leaving after this year...We have decided to put them in our neighborhood Catholic school...The public schools have been heading down hill the last few years...And our oldest, isn't being challenged at all...She's in 4th grade and reading at a 6th grade level...She's ahead in everything...And the public school as I said, blows!

At first I thought the Little Beeze was sick from all the junk food he had Thursday night at the Lake Erie Monsters game...Yep, the boy and I took in some AHL hockey Thursday night...We got seats right on the glass...


He loved it...He loved repeating all the trash talk the die hard fans were shouting all night...Great section! Great view of the action!


And the Monsters as they have all season, drew well again...At the first intermission, we saw that even Waldo was there...


The boy had Ice cream, and then cotton candy, and water...I had a hot pretzel and a Mountain Dew...That crap along with parking ran us $35...So even minor league sports charge way too much for that stuff, but $35 each for seats on the glass, is great...Little Beeze pounding on the glass and repeating the trash talk he heard, was priceless...

But there was something there that pissed me off...Cleveland's two biggest culinary swingin' dicks both have places at "The Q"...Chef Michael Symon has one of his overrated, overpriced, arrogant, douchebag "B-Spot" burger places there...And Chef Rocco Whalen, from "Fat Chef" crying like a bitch, "I'm fat because mommy kept feeding me to protect me."...And "I'm a stress eater."...Fuck you! Rocco has a Nacho & Taco place there...

Both these egotistical, fucktards didn't have their places open...What, do these cunts only open for the Cavs...Ummm, fuck the Cavs...Pay attention to the numbers...By the end of the year, The Monsters will have out-drawn the Cavaliers...The Monsters are averaging 14,000 a game...Hey dummies, the Quaker Steak & Lube was selling shit tons of wings...I bet if Rocco's Nachos & Tacos was open, he would have made a good buck...Shit I would have hit up some of that shit...But that's what happens when you're an arrogant douche who thinks you're the only fucker in Cleveland who can cook...Both of you cunts can suck a dick!

By the way, the Monsters won 4-3...Not a bad club, considering the injuries, flu, and call ups to Colorado...

Now to what the hot and heavy sports talk in Cleveland is...


Holy shit that looks good!

As my regular readers know, I predicted Griffin to win the Heisman back in July...I've been paying attention to the kid for a few years, and I really like him...I like the fact that he was recruited by Stanford, but decided to go to Baylor for two reasons...He didn't want to wrapped up in a QB battle with Andrew Luck, that could affect the team badly...And he wanted to go to Baylor, to turn it around...To make the program relevant...Well he did that...Now could he do the same for the Cleveland Browns?

I would love to see it...But the Browns aren't talking...And knowing the little that we know, this group in the front office does not like to part with draft picks...And rumor has it, that to get Griffin, they have to move up to the 2 slot...To do that, the talk is giving up both their 1st round picks this year, and next years...Why so much to move up 2 spots? Because the Redskins have a nut-job owner who will sell the farm for a star QB...

Now the Browns have a lot of holes to fill...They need WR's...Yes, more then one...They need a right tackle...Another corner...A safety...And outside linebacker...A running back...Another OL and DL to add depth...A QB wouldn't be bad either...Now some of that shit can and should be done through free agency...

Now, I'm a believer that there is no point in getting your franchise QB if you aren't going to give him the weapons and protection he needs...So no matter who that is, the Browns really need to get those pieces...But Griffin seems to be one of those rare talents that you may never get another chance at...For the critics, did you see, he's not under 6 foot...He measured in at 6 foot 2 inches plus...Oh, and then he ran the 40 in 4.41...But don't be confused...RG3 has always been a throw first, run only when needed guy...So don't stick him with the labels that are always put on black QB's...Kid can make all the throws...

So, I'm all in with doing what has to be done to get RG3 in Cleveland...Shit Brownies, just think of all the #10 jerseys you'll sell! Browns fans will finally have a QB that they are really excited about...Who was the last? Bernie Kosar! And he couldn't run at all!

Monday is the Trade Deadline in the NHL....Everyone is waiting to see if Columbus moves star, captain, franchise leader, and heart & soul, Rick Nash...I hope not, unless it;s to the New York Rangers!

I'll be watching all the deadline deals, while I sit on the shitter...

Have a week...

Later, The Beeze.

Buzz from the Bleachers
Category: Daily Blog 2.0
Tags: Black History Month Chris Webber NFL free agency Goodell V. Aikman

People can surprise you. I know that I, for one, have been very critical of Chris Webber in the past. As an Ohio State fan who grew up in Michigan, I got awful tired of hearing about the Fab Five. Webber has has his share of grief over comments and odd moments in his basketball career, but I learned a surprising fact about Webber today: he's a history buff. He's also a collector of historical items.

 It seems that Webber has maintained a collection of artifacts from African American heroes like Dr. King and Rosa Parks. While the collection was began as a means of personal inspiration, Webber has recently decided to show his collection to the public. Starting in April Webber will loan his collection to the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History here in midtown Detroit. Webber says that he has decided to share is collection with the public to help inspire and educate the public, especially kids. 

While the NFL is in its off season and we wait for the draft, we can take pause to think about the veterans available in free agency. While one can easily guess more than a few guys will stay put, theres some interesting players available. QBs like Drew Brees and Alex smith will probably be re-sign to their old teams. The only question is for how much. Donovon McNabb is out there, but common sense figures he'll retire. The three guys I see as most interesting in the QB class are Matt Flynn, Jason Campbell, and Shaun Hill. 

While Flynn and Hill have spent most of their time as back-ups, they've performed admirably when called upon. Flynn made the Lions defense look very average when they last met, much to my bro's chagrin. He figures to be a huge draw and may even tempt teams who have a high draft pick. 

I hope the Lions will re-sign Hill, but his services would be good for a team looking for a veteran QB to back-up or challenge a younger guy. Campbell's hopes of being re-signed by the Raiders may have tanked when the Raiders paid up for Carson Palmer. Campbell was only able to play in 6 games for a run happy offense in Oakland, but he had a 60.6 % completion rate with 1,170 yards and 6 TDs. He had 5 turn overs, which is a worry, but has shown he has the goods to start.

The offensive side of the ball is very deep in free agency. My favorite running back available is Michael Bush. I don't mean to raid Oakland's cabinet, but I'd love to see the Lions pick this guy up and focus their draft picks on defense. Bush has had a nice run backing up McFadden and shows very good versatility. Bush was very close to reaching 1000 yards rushing last season with 7 TDs and only 1 fumble in 256 carries. 

The wide receiver position is by far the most exciting group. There is a lot of value for teams who choose not to bank on the draft. I imagine guys like Wes Welker, Vincent Jackson, Marques Colston, and Mike Wallace will be re-signed, but that leaves a lot of quality guys out there. Indy has three receivers who are free agents and none of them are restricted or have been given the franchise tag yet. Reggie Wayne, Pierre Garcon, and Anthony Gonzalez will be on the market and with the Colts still thinking of Manning it will be interesting to see who they will keep. Ideally they'll keep all three, but any of them would make fine additions to any team. Wayne fell short of 1000 yards for the first time, but inconsistent QB play may be more of the answer than aging. I also like Dwayne Bowe, Mario Manningham (though I figure the Giants will try to keep him), and Greg Camarillo. A lot of the other guys seem as if they will come with too large of a price tag and expectations.

Speaking of the NFL, after another season of incredible revenue and record setting TV ratings, Goodell and the gang are clamoring for an 18 game season. Troy Aikman came out against this, but also the NFL moving there games to include Thursday and Saturday. I wasn't sure if I'd ever feel this way, but I agree with Aikman. Aikman tried to remind the owners that the NFL may not be number one forever. Moving games to days other than Sunday or Monday night puts those games in direct competition with NCAAF for viewers and revenue. No to mention that these games are often shown exclusively on NFL Network. The greed of Goodell and the owners threatens to alienate the NCAA (not that they are innocent either) as well as the fans at home. I think Aikman is right. The league needs to reign things in, or at least not try to get any bigger by adding games.

Well, thats it for me this week. I have to agree with a lot of my fellow Gabbers that it's great to know that spring training has started. Reports are that Miguel Cabrerra is in town and looking lighter. He seems ready to attempt playing third. Always a good sign. Thanks for stopping in and reading. Hope you guys have a great week. I leave you with your word of the week.

introdouche, verb

The way in which a douchebag would go about introducing his/herself. Bragging about their meaningless accomplishments in an attempt to impress you.
Chris: Watch this, John's about to introdouche himself to Carol.

John (Speaking to Carol) : "Nice to meet you, John's the name. Nice rack. Think I met you one time at the bowling party. I won three times."

Carol: "Thanks for introdouching yourself."

 

 

Musings From the Hoodwood 2-21
Category: Daily Blog 2.0
Tags: NFL NBA NCAA Picks & Predictions

 

For those that wonder...that is your humble scribe with the lovely Lady Bandit, we took in the Bearcats win over Seton Hall this past Saturday.

 

Greetings from the Hoodwood, where the locals are enjoying Fat Tuesday but not sure of what they will give up for Lent.

Leading off: Linsanity and KD make the NBA watchable

You know that when it comes to basketball, Im a college guy as evidenced by the picture of the Lady Bandit and myself. Sunday, I took in some of the pro game. As first told to you by my Phat Dap two weeks ago, Jeremy Lin continues to take the NBA by storm. The haters waved off his initial run as a fluke “Wait till he plays a good team.” When he torched the Lake Show for 38 it was “Meh, the Lakers aren’t any good any more.” Many pointed to the Sunday matinee against the defending NBA champ Dallas Mavericks. Many also were hooting and sneering at Lin’s 9 turnovers in Friday’s loss to the lowly Hornets. But in front of a national audience and a rapt MSG crowd. Lin dropped 28 points dealt 14 dimes and 5 steals. The Knicks won their 8th out of 9, beating the Mavs 102-97. You know its on when dedicated fan Spike Lee is sporting a Jeremy Lin Harvard jersey (How does he get those???) Its looking more and more like Lin is the real deal and cats like Baron Davis and Mike Bibby might be looking for jobs elsewhere.

That night it got even better Kevin Durant and the Thunder were going head up with the Nuggets in an absolute thriller. Time and time again, Durant put the Thunder on his back and made clutch shot after clutch shot, not only did Durant lead the Thunder to an overtime win, he scored a career high 51 points. Oh snap! No he didn’t drop Fiddy on someones head. Oh yes he did. And it gets better, lost in that performance was Russell Westbrook adding 40 points. Lost even further in the shuffle was a triple double by Serge Ibaka, he had 14 points 15 boards and 11 blocks…that is just so wrong on so many levels. Now this may have been a meaningless mid February game but you have to give dap where its due. Its games like this that when showcased properly are helping the NBA get past the acrimony of the latest labor strife, and action packed games with likeable players that are easy to root for are things that will make me watch the pro game even before the One Shining Moment gets played the First Monday in April.

 

Peyton’s messy divorce from the Colts

Ive never been married and my parents were divorced when I was in grade school so I know little about what goes on in a divorce. Ive been told by many a divorcee that it is nothing like a messy breakup with a girlfriend. In any case, its just excruciating to watch the slow breakup between the Indianapolis Colts and Peyton Manning. The date of March 8th when Manning is due a $28 million roster bonus is fast approaching and the Colts, mostly owner Jim Irsay seems to be waffling between bringing Manning back to be a mentor to their top draft pick, either Andrew Luck or Heisman winner Robert Griffin III or to let him go. The longer that this plays out the more painful it becomes. First it was looking like the Colts were totally cleaning house with the dismissal of GM Bill Polian, coach Jim Caldwell and the hiring of a defensive minded coach and offensive guru Bruce Arians. Instead Irsay keeps hedging about letting Manning go. Manning who already owns just about every Colts passing record and is one touchdown short of 400 doesn’t look to be the type to defer his starting position to a rookie and should rightfully have his starting position is left to wonder what his fate will be. He has said that he is willing to stay but knows that he could be given the gate. Like in any divorce, there are people caught in the middle.  Already psychologically damaged from the nightmare 2-14 season of 2011 and the prospect of returning to also-ran status after better than a decade of being one of the NFL’s elite poor Colt fans are left to twist in the wind. Manning is about a big a legend in the Hoosier state as any basketball legend and is rightly revered as a franchise savior. But this drama should not have to play out in a most painful manner. I have the feeling that this will go right up to the deadline of when Manning is due his roster bonus.

 

Speaking Frankly: Kobe on Pau

Im not a Kobe fan, I do appreciate his game but I think he is aloof and arrogant. I chronicled his impending divorce and how that’s going to impact him but that is another story. Kobe spoke out after the Lakers got throttled by the Suns in Phoenix Sunday about the Lakers leaving Pau Gasol hang in the midst of rampant trade rumors. Ive heard of no less than six teams that are supposedly in talks with the Lakers for the Spainard and the talks have affected his play. Kobe was quite outspoken in his pointed criticism of the Lakers management. Kobe said Sunday postgame in part “I wish management would come out and either trade him or not trade (Gasol)." Bryant has repeatedly and openly stated of his desire for Gasol to remain a Laker. Gasol has been with the Lakers since 2008 after coming over from the Memphis Grizzlies in a trade for the draft rights to his brother Marc, Aaron McKie, Jarvis Crittenden and super bust Kwame Brown. Gasol played in Memphis  6 ½ years after being drafted by Atlanta and traded to Memphis in 2001 where he won rookie of the year honors.

When Words Fail

Having written this column for better than a year, I know the power of a word. Having also worked in radio for a number of years, I also know that words can be said out of context. There were a pair of cases the past weekend, both involving Jeremy Lin and the same phrase. On ESPN the Headline Chink in Armor was used in a derogatory way to describe Lin. Max Bretos an anchor for ESPN News used the phrase “Chink the Armor” when asking Knicks legend and color analyst  Walt “Clyde” Frazier about Lins game. The editor Anthony Federico who wrote the headline was fired. Bretos was given 30 days suspension. Now what the editor did was stupid, it was a weak attempt to make a play on words but calling someone a chink went out with Archie Bunker. Its insensitive. The phrase that Bretos was using in his question to Frazier was asking an NBA Hall of Famer to gage if Lin had weaknesses and was not with any pun or malice.

 

 

I think that the PC went a little too far. I took some time to dig the clip of Bretos asking the question and had to sift through so many You Tube wannabe investigative journalist ripping both Bretos and Federico. Me myself, I think Bretos should have made an on-air apology, I don’t think he was being malicious. Federico apologized but he got what  he deserved…the gate. The tendency to get cute and try to turn the eye popping phrase is too easy to try and Federico crossed a line in that attempt. Bretos had the unfortunate happenstance to be caught up with the same phrase at about the same time.

 

Spec Sheet 2-21: Grinding

These are the so-called dog days of the college basketball season. Its too close to the end of the season for any bad losses or pronounced losing streaks, but too far away from the conference tournaments to really give anyone a lock on their bid. I mean on the real, if a UK or Mizzou or Duke or Ohio State suddenly lost their last four or five games, it would do them no worse than cost them a 1 or 2 seed.

Atlantic Coast 
(Conference Class-Power) 
Solid: Duke, North Carolina, Florida State , Virginia 
Work to do: North Carolina State, Miami
Skinny on the ACC: No real changes here all the Solid teams did nothing to hurt themselves. The Wolfpack missed a real chance to make a big impression and the Canes while winning did nothing to impress.  

Key Game: North Carolina at North Carolina State Tuesday 8p The Pack get another chance to make a big impression and with an expected rowdy crowd at the RBC center there to honor the 89 Sweet 16 team, the Pack will be emotionally charged.

 Projected Bids: 6 

Atlantic Ten 
Conference Class-Mid Major 
Solid: Temple, Saint Louis
Work to do:  UMass,
The A-10 Spec is: While Temple and Saint Louis continue to circle one another at the top of the A-10 like snarling dogs protecting their turf. No real change in their status. Xavier may have saved its season with a thrilling OT win over Dayton

Key Games: Temple at LaSalle Wednesday 8p Temple had best take care when playing their in-city Big 5 rival, they can ill afford a loss now with Saint Louis hot on their heels.

Projected Bids: 2 

Big East 
Conference Class-Power 
Solid: Syracuse, Georgetown, Marquette, Louisville, Notre Dame

Looking Good: Cincinnati

Work to do:   South Florida, West Virginia, Seton Hall 
Big East Skinny: Hate on them all want but the Bearcats I think still have enough to get them in the tourney. Though the win against Seton Hall was not the most aesthetically pleasing to watch, especially from right under the basket. The Bearcats continue to pile ugly wins together and are looking at least a first round bye in the Big East tourney. South Florida is a tough team to figure. They have 10 wins in conference but only 17 overall and no signature wins, having lost to all 4 ranked teams that they have played and have losses to Old Dominion, Penn State weighing their resume down. West Virginia is in as big a trouble. Having lost five of their last seven with the wins coming both in OT, struggling to beat Providence will not curry any favor with the selection committee. I wasn’t impressed with Seton Hall in any way though they have seemed to caught the eye of some so-called experts. I don’t think that they are tourney worthy but still have some time to change minds.

Key Game: South Florida at Syracuse Wednesday 7p If the Bulls want to shut all the naysayers up, they win this one. I will move them up to Solid if they can stop the rampaging Orange

Projected bids: 8 

Big Ten 
Conference Class-Power 
Solid: Michigan State, Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio State, Indiana,

Looking Good: Purdue
Work to do: Northwestern, Iowa

The word on the Big Ten is: Still marking time until March the PFS teams are not jostling for the better position in the Big 10 tourney. Read nothing into the Hoosiers The Boilers aren’t in trouble, but they still aren’t home free just yet. Im still waiting for one more big win before I move them up just yet. Northwestern and Iowa replace Illinois and Minnesota who have dropped off the radar. But the newcomers still have to build resumes

Key Games: Michigan at Northwestern Tuesday 7p; Wisconsin at Iowa Thursday 8p The newcomers to the Spec sheet can gain credibility with wins over ranked visitors.

Projected Bids: 6 

Big 12 
Conference Class-Power 
Solid: Kansas, Baylor, Missouri

Looking Good: Iowa State, Kansas State 
Work to do:  Texas

Skinny from the heartland: Not much change here, and no Texas isn’t going anywhere at least till they play Baylor next week. Iowa State is in the same kind of situation but their schedule is a bit easier Shaddap, Texas fans your team took an awful loss against Oklahoma and may just need to win out and make a deep run in Kansas City to get seriously considered.

Key Game: Kansas State at Missouri Tuesday 7p The Wildcats could move on up to thesolid line if they win at Mizzou..

Projected Bids: 5 

Conference USA 
Conference Class-Major 
Solid: , Southern Miss

Work to do: Tulsa, Memphis, Central Florida
Oh Say Can You C-USA Spec: You laugh at some of the Key games I post, but when the upset happen you wonder where they come from. Southern Miss picked the wrong time to cross the Cougars and got zapped with an ill-timed loss. The Tigers couldn’t  take advantage and took a bad bad loss to UTEP themselves and remain in a tie with the Golden Eagles for the C-USA lead. The Golden Hurricane is just a half game back but the upper two teams have better resumes. They and the Knights might need to get to the Saturday morning C-USA final to get serious considerations.

Key Game: Southern Miss at UTEP Wednesday 9p Stung by a needless loss to the lowly Cougars the Eagles face a UTEP team brimming with confidence after knocking off Memphis

Projected Bids: 2


Horizon 
Conference Class-Mid Major 
Solid: Valpo,
Work to do:  Cleveland State,  Butler, Detroit

Spec on The Horizon: The Crusaders are 1 ½ games up with two to play and could lock down the Horizon top seed which would mean home games for the Horizon tourney. The Vikings, Bulldogs and Titans are trying stay on the far side of the bracket to avoid the Crusaders until a winner take all final.

Key Game: Loyola-Chicago at Valpo Tuesday 8p The Crusaders lock up the Horizon title and make the road to the NCAA go through their gym

Projected Bids: 1 

IVY 
Conference Class-Small 
Solid: Harvard 
Work To Do: Yale, Penn 
Spec on the Ivy Vine: The Crimson thrashed the Bulldogs and are getting close to pulling away.
Key Games: Princeton at Harvard Friday 7p; Penn at Harvard Saturday 7p The Tigers are the only team to have beaten the Crimson in conference and the Quakers are in dire need of a win in Cambridge to pull the Crimson back to the pack.

Projected Bids: 1 


Missouri Valley 
Conference Class-Mid Major 
Solid: Wichita State 
Work to do: Creighton
Missouri Valley Skinny: The Shockers thumped Davidson and added some weight to an already solid resume. The Bluejays won a thriller over a good Long Beach squad and stopped their frightening slide. Is it too little too late? I don’t think so, they have enough to get them in.  

Key Game: Wichita State at Illinois State Wednesday 8p The Shockers wrap up the #1 seed in the MVC Arch Madness with a win but the Redbirds are no pushover

Projected Bids: 2


Mountain West 
Conference Class-Major 
Solid: San Diego State, UNLV 
Work to do: New Mexico
Spec from the Mountains: The Lobos went from afterthought to big boss in the the MWC in the span of about 10 days. Stunning wins over San Diego State and UNLV have made the Lobos the solid choice. Are the Aztecs and/or Rebels in any kind of trouble? Nope, with 3 ranked teams and the weak Pac-12 squandering bid chances, these are the deserving teams out west right here!

Key Game: New Mexico at Colorado State Tuesday 10p Now it’s the Lobos turn to feel like the hunted. They need to watch out against a decent Rams squad.

Projected Bids: 3 


Pacific 12 
Conference Class-Power 
Solid: Cal, Washington, Arizona Oregon, Colorado

Work to do:  Stanford
Spec from the left coast: Cal is still leading here, I loath handing out bids to these middling power schools, but with 68 bids it makes it much easier for these so-so schools to get legit looks.  The Buffs and Ducks are closing in on 20 wins and will be hard to leave out. Forget what you hear about Washington being on the bubble or fence, they are good enough.

 Key Game: Cal at Utah Thursday 9p (FOX Sports Net) The Bears had better be careful, with Washington looking to get past them in the standings a loss to the weak Utes would be seriously damaging

Projected Bids: 5



Southeastern 
Conference Class-Power 
Solid: Kentucky, Vanderbilt, Florida, Mississippi State 
Work to do: Alabama, LSU

Spec is Down South: The Wildcats biggest opponent now is boredom short of the SEC tourney in Atlanta. Florida and Vandy are the best of the rest though Mississippi is tottering dangerously to losing its solid/PFS status

Key Game: Kentucky at Mississippi State Tuesday 9p The Wildcats go to “The Hump” and the Bulldogs could have a big trophy win to gain here.

Projected Bids: 5


Western Athletic 
Conference Class- Major 
Solid: Nevada
Work to do:  New Mexico State,
Spec on the WAC: The Lobos are marking time till March, unless the Aggies make a serious run, Im still keeping this a one-bid for now

Key Game: Hawai’i at New Mexico State 9p Thursday The Aggies need to keep piling up wins short of a showdown with the Wolfpack on the 1st

Projected Bids: 1

West Coast 
Conference Class- Mid Major 
Solid: Gonzaga, St. Marys 
Work to do:  BYU, Loyola Marymount
West Coast Spec: When will you listen to me when I tell you about these games to watch. The Bulldogs took a heartbreaking loss in San Francisco and now are a game back of the Gaels who have nothing to be ashamed of after losing at Murray State. Does BYU deserve a third bid from this conference???

Key Game: BYU at GonzagaThursday 11p Shaken after their stunning upset loss to San Francisco the Bulldogs go back to the Kennel but  the Cougars are looking to make a move up and this would be a great resume win.

Projected Bids: 2 

There are others in the mix to be sure. Teams from the always dangerous Colonial and Big South always are in the mix and can send multiple teams. Of course the champions from the following conferences get an automatic bid: Amer. East, Atlantic Sun, Big Sky, Big West, MAC, MAAC, MEAC, Northeast, Ohio Valley, Patriot, Southern, Southland, Sun Belt, Summit, and SWAC. Projected winners of these conferences will start to post here on Friday.

Remember folks, this sheet is fluid, nothing here is solid and we haven't even brought up the possibility of upsets. But those never happen, right? 

Next Spec on Friday

 

 Phat Dap Head Slap

 Phat Dap

Goes to Mike Sapraicone of Long Island who hit a half court shot at the Knicks-Mavs game Sunday to win a car. He had to make five free throws just to get the shot at the whip. After making the shot Sapraicone ran over and hugged Spike Lee. This was the shortest video I could find, sorry for the letterbox

 

Head Slap

To rabbit eared ref Karl Hess of the ACC who ejected NC State legends Chris Corchiani and Tom Gugliotta from the NC State/Florida State game on Saturday. Hess asked the two former Wolfpack players to be removed from their seats behind the scorers table and were done so by Raleigh Police. Now according to ACC officials supervisor John Clougherty the officials have the authority to remove fans when their actions are extreme or excessive but to do so in such a public manner was not needed. I still think that the refs was listening more to getting badgered than working the game. I know when the Lady Bandit and I were at the Seton Hall-Cincy game, I was heckling and hectoring the refs about their horrible officiating and many of the 13,003 that were in attendance would have agreed with me. But the refs should be concentrating on the game not listening to loudmouth hecklers. As long as the heckling wasn’t profanity laced or racially tinged, heckling is fine and part of the game. This ref should have had thicker skin.

 

Until Next Post Fellow Sports Fans!

you can mock my mock draft
Category: NFL
Tags: NFL Peyton Manning draft

Things are quiet at the empty nest oldharry household these days, work keeps me busy to pay the college bills for mrsharry and the youngest of the four youngharrys, My Marine Lance Corporal daughter is working for all of us keeping us safe.

So with my free time I hang with you, my Gab family.

thanks for reading and commenting.

It's February and the 2011 NFL season is over. This means the 2012 season has begun and with that comes the mock drafts
Pitchers and catchers report next week so this week I'm putting my initial prognostication.

I'll revisit this before the real draft after the combines, personal workouts, trades, free agent signings and retirements.

1. Indianapolis- a lot of needs here....this wasn't just a team with an injured QB. Indy won't pay Peyton 28 million and so this is a good place to start the rebuilding and fill the greatest need, QB pick- Andrew Luck, Stanford

2. STLouis-  Offensive Line is the biggest need, and help is available, the pick-  Matt Kalil, USC

3 Minnesota- Kalil would help but he's gone, but they have other needs, they take- Justin Blackmon, WR, Oklahoma State

4. Cleveland- biggest need QB and there is a good one available, the pick- Robert Griffin III, QB, Baylor

5. Tampa Bay -they need a defensive play maker and find one in- Michael Brockers, DT, LSU

6. Washington- many needs but they think they have a puzzle piece solved- Ryan Tannehill, QB, Texas A&M

7. Jacksonville- really could use a WR but they need help everywhare and can't pass on- Quinton Coples, DE, North Carolina

8. Carolina- in need of defensive help and happy he's here at #8- Morris Claiborne, CB, LSU

9. Miami- needs a QB and hopes it will be Matt Flynn or Peyton Manning in free agency and take- Riley Reiff, OT, Iowa

10. Buffalo- needs a pass rusher and gets one high motor guy- Courtney Upshaw, OLB, Alabama

11. Kansas City- needs O line help and a healthy Matt Cassell, the pick -Jonathan Martin, OT, Stanford

12. Seattle- would love a quality QB but with this slip they get to take a real play maker - Trent Richardson, RB, Alabama

13. Arizona -could use another fast WR or Offensive line help and they pick- David DeCastro, OG, Stanford

14. Dallas- needs to revamp the secondary ,this guy helps -. Mark Barron  S Alabama
     
15. Philadelphia- was loaded last season with just a few serious needs they get help at  linebacker, the Eagles take- Luke Kuechly, ILB, Boston College
 
16. NYJets needs a LB that can cover NE's TE's how about- Melvin Ingram, OLB, South Carolina

17. Cincinnati -needs secondary help and and has two 1st round picks with this one they take- Dre Kirkpatrick, CB, Alabama

18. San Diego -seriously needs Offensive Line help and you can't get a new HC in the draft, the Chargers take this big guy -Cordy Glenn, OG, Georgia

19. Chicago, Da Bears and quarterback Jay Cutler need a WR and get one here- Kendall Wright, WR, Baylor

20. Tennessee- needs a defensive play maker -Nick Perry, DE, USC

21. Cincinnati -after picking  a corner at #17 this is a bonus pick- Michael Floyd, WR, Notre Dame

22. Cleveland- getting Jenkins at #22 is a steal, the Patriots toy with trading up for this pick for this guy but in the end they don't- Janoris Jenkins, CB, North Alabama

23. Detroit- could use a Left Tackle but this is a quality pick and a guy many thought would be gone at this point -Devon Still, DT, Penn State

24. Pittsburgh- needs to address both lines, the defense will benefit with this guy Whitney Mercilus, DE, Illinois

25. Denver- they won the division but everyone knows they need help on both sides of the ball, this is some serious help on defense-   Jerel Worthy, DT, Michigan State
 
26. Houston- needs good health and another WR and this is a potential jackpot- Mohamed Sanu, WR, Rutgers

27. New England -needs a speedy WR many defensive backs and a pass rusher, they address the Dback situation here Brandon Boykin, CB, Georgia

28. Green Bay - wondered which CB the Patriots would take at #27, they don't lose on this one as Alfonzo Dennard, CB, Nebraska
falls to them.

29. Baltimore- wants another chance before the defense gets too old, they pick- Jared Crick, DE, Nebraska

30. San Francisco -was lacking a deep threat and and it cost them a trip to the SB today they get one-  Rueben Randle, WR, LSU

31. New England -still needs a speedy WR, a pass rusher and a slew of defensive backs. they go against conventional wisdom and don't trade down and pick- Coby Fleener from Stanford, TE at 6'6" 260 big, quick, fast and great hands, led the nation in TD's for a TE with 10. who needs WR's

32. NY Giants- The Champs can use this pick to further strengthen the SB winning defense- Fletcher Cox, DT, Mississippi State

have a great day

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