Odds and Ends – 11/16

16 11 2009

When we’re lacking stories for a full post, we’ll post some thoughts on the stories of the day. This is that post.


Belichick's Reaction

Colts 35, Patriots 34. What a great game. First regular season game that we remember that that has lived up to the ESPN produced hype. The issue here is the call by New England to go for it on 4 and 2 from their own 28 yard line with just over 2 minutes left in the 4th. Maybe it’s just me, but I think this is a signal of something. The Patriots don’t make that call. They understand clock management better than everyone else. It’s not Andy Reid on the opposite sideline, it’s Bill Belichick – a guy with 3 Super Bowl rings. You have to at least make Peyton Manning work for the go ahead score. But they didn’t…and they lost. The old (read: 2001-2005) Patriots punt and hold their opponent. The 2007 Patriots go for it and make it, and then score an “eff you” touchdown (hat tip Bill Simmons). These Patriots panicked, and we think they might be slipping.


The Newest Bobcat

Stephen Jackson Traded. Meh. Was hoping that Jackson got dealt to a contender…we think he’s still a difference maker, even if he’s a headcase. Instead he’s dealt to Charlotte, where he’ll be the only offense. Liked Acie Law in college, he’s now buried on the bench behind Ray Felton and DJ Augustin (another guy we loved in college). Too Bad. Golden State doesn’t really get much out of this. Perhaps addition by subtraction by dealing Jackson. Raja Bell plays defense…he’s now the only guy in northern California that does. The Warriors have a lot of young talent that fits their system, but between Don Nelson hating young guys and deal like this that just crowd the rotation, they are not going anywhere.

Bob Stoops to South Bend? (Chicago Sun-Times via Colin Cowherd) Reports saying that Bob Stoops and Kirk Ferentz top the short list to replace Charlie Weis at Notre Dame don’t make a lot of sense to us. Ferentz is a defense first guy, and it’s nearly impossible to field a high caliber defense, plus he’s not a “blue chip” kinda guy, he molds unheralded kids into stars. Stoops would be more interesting, but we’d save the roughly $40 million (~$20 million to Weis in a buyout plus Stoops rumored ~$18 million buyout) and go Brian Kelly. Kelly has proven he can win anywhere, and he’s got the offense that would fit the Irish’s current roster. Stoops would probably lost both of his coordinators, meaning he’s going to have to rebuild a little, which means a longer wait for a return to the BCS. Lastly, isn’t Weis being run off for his terrible record in big games? (two wins since 2006 against teams that finished over .500) Why go out and get Stoops who has notably flopped in any big games since the exit of Jason White and Adrian Peterson?


Your Mandatory USC Football Post

15 11 2009
The End of Dynasty?

Do Toby Gerhart and Stanford signal the end of the USC Dynasty?

Some people called it before the season, and some hailed the end two weeks ago after a trashing in Eugene. Everyone is saying it now. USC is dead, their reign at the top of the Pac-10 is over, and an unforeseen date with the Las Vegas Bowl is in their future. Everyone else has caught up to the former king, and the conference is wide open for the foresee able future.

Hold the phone. Maybe we’re going out on a limb here, and just refuse to believe that one of the most dominant teams of the past decade is suddenly defunct. While this season is certainly a “disappointment” in Southern California, this program is far from “dead.”

Pete Carroll saw it coming. An injury plagued group of pass catchers that, even when healthy were not striking fear into the hearts of defenses a la Dwayne Jarrett, Steve Smith and Mike Williams. A stable of mediocre running backs. A banged up offensive line. A defense that sent 8 players to the NFL. It does not matter if you “never rebuild, only reload” You cannot replace that kind of attrition. So Carroll did what made sense then and still makes sense today. He played a true freshman, Matt Barkley, over guys with experience in the system (Aaron Corp and Mitch Mustain). Carroll has always played the experienced veterans, but not this year. He with the young gun. Something most teams with losing records do at the end of the year. If anything, it speaks to what Carroll has built that the team was in the top 5 at one point and will still likely win 9, possibly 10 games, with a true freshman under center and all of the previously mentioned issues.

Given time to rebuild his defense, and get some playmaking skill guys (all due respect to Damian Williams, but you need more than one) Pete Carroll will have his team back on top, possibly as soon as next year.

NFL Picks – Week 10

14 11 2009

So, it’s been awhile. But no worries, we’re back (and with inspiration this time!)

This will be a consistent feature on the site, we’re getting a bit of a late start, but we’ve been picking since Week 1. Picking winners, not ATS. Little explanation with each pick, as a way to get some analysis. On to the good stuff.

– San Fran over Chicago. This is late now, but trust me…I had it. Everyone had it. The Bears are not good.

– New Orleans over St. Louis. Does anybody think differently? This is a sure of a thing as you can get.

– Tampa Bay over Miami. Going out on a limb here, but Freeman looked good last week.

– Minnesota over Detroit. Another near sure thing. Tarvaris Jackson could play and Minny still wins handily.

-Jets over Jacksonville. Jets are playing for something, Jacksonville is just terrible (outside of MJD of course)

– Tennessee over Buffalo. Vince Young Chris Johnson just wins games.

– Pittsburgh over Cincy. They’re back. Anyone who watched the second half of MNF saw it. Pitt is scary when they’re on

– Denver over Washington. Bounce back week for the Broncos. A gift from the schedule maker.

– Atlanta over Carolina. The Falcons have lost to some of the best teams in the NFL right now, they’re better than you think.

– Oakland over Kansas City. Wow…ummm….Oakland is at home.

– Arizona over Seattle. Cardinals inconsistent, Seahawks are injured…sound familiar?

– Dallas over Green Bay. The Packers are not good. Dallas is playing well, although we are getting deeper into November, so it won’t last.

– Indy over New England. Colts are at home, and I think the fill-in secondary gets carried by the offense.

– Baltimore over Cleveland. An off week for Monday Night. Ravens will roll.

Overall: 83-48.


21 10 2009

This will be, for the most part, a sports blog. I’ll probably have posts at minimum every other day for now. Subjects will include Football (College and NFL), Basketball (College and to a lesser extent the NBA), and Major League Baseball. I will likely also have some sort of movie, music, and possibly some TV commentary as well.

Let’s get off to a start with what I just watched: Game 4 of the ALCS.

– Yankees offense is (obviously) dangerous, and will make any pitcher work, although Kazmir’s usual inconsistency helped them on that account.

– I’m hesitant to declare the series over (don’t want to jinx anything, as shades of 2004 run through my head), but it has to be close. Burnett, 5th inning aside, was surprisingly solid in his Game 2 start, and Lackey has looked better than his Game 1 start.

– Understanding that umps miss calls, but from my seat on the couch calling Nick Swisher out for leaving early was terrible. To not even be looking at the runner and still call him out for leaving early (when seeing the runner would at least appear to be a requirement) seems like a serious stretch.

– Looking forward to the conclusion of both series, and it would certainly appear that Philly has that series almost over as well. Comebacks from 3-1 are rare, and a Freeway Series is in serious jeopardy.

That’s probably all for this evening. Look for a BCS post tomorrow, along with maybe an NBA division preview.

And get used to bullet points, thats how I roll.