Friday, August 10, 2007

Smittblog Off To The OC: Ocean City, NJ

This is the headline from my trip to the Jersey Shore last year. Apparently they weren't used to my unique brand of shower presence.

I'm outta here for a week. I may pop in for a check in or two but mostly I'll be maxin and possibly relaxin (mostly maxin). Peace and be sure to buy some Snorg Tees and Tailgating pants. It's money well spent.

Lastly, in addition to the above article photograph, there is also some video from my trip to the OC last year. Enjoy the week (I'm the guy in the blue button-down unbuttoned about halfway. And yes, this is why I'm hot):

Classy Tailgating Pants: Now They've Thought Of Everything

When I think "tailgating pants," I picture a pair of lose fitting stretch pants with your team's colors circling the pant legs in a tight zebra-like formation. They were already invented and they are called Zubaz (do yourself a favor and click on that link). Well the gentlemen at Pennington & Bailes weren't satisfied with the Zubaz monopoly and wanted to improve on the idea of a tailgating pant, so they came up with the idea of a more classy trouser selection for gameday. They wanted some britches that signify both your affinity for your team as well as your sophistication. Sure you're a a diehard but you also enjoy a nice Brandy Alexander post-game at the Alumni Club. The slacks at Pennington & Bailes get the message across loud and clear. Sure they may be a little on the pricey side ($135 a pop) and yeah they don't represent that many teams at present (about 2 dozen mostly southern schools) but their statement is unmistakeable and their high style is undeniable. If you are an alum of one of these schools and are planning on going to a game, I'm not sure how you can afford not to buy these pants. They make a greater statement about your fandom than any cleverly written sign or license plate acronym. Everyone will know immediately about you and your feelings about your team. Though in the case of the Ole Miss pants, the statement may explain a little too much:

The Clemens Suspension Is Bullshit

Not according to Guncle Bud it's not, Mr. Bunny.

I hate Roger Clemens (unless he pitches for my team). He's a selfish prick who tries to come off as the ultimate team guy when in fact it's always all about him. If you think his signing with the Yanks was about anything more than the amount of zeroes on his paycheck, then you are an idiot. He'd have signed with the fucking East Podunk Scrotum Schwabbers if they paid him $2 million a start and allowed him to skip weekend starts so he could co-habitate with Pettitte on Fire Island. I don't have enough bad things to say about this "true Yankee" who will go into the hall with a Red Sox cap on. All that being said, the fact that Clemens was suspended for plunking Alex Rios right between the 1 & 5 on his jersey while Josh Towers walks away scott free is f'n absurd.

If you didn't watch what happened, A-Rod was thrown at twice in retribution for the "Ha! / Mine!" incident a couple months ago. He was hit once on the f'n left knee by Josh Towers (thank you Josh) and through it all it was clear as daylight that the Jays were throwing at him. In fact, it was so clear that home plate umpire Angel Hernandez warned everybody and then took the time to walk Clemens to the mound the next inning to talk to him about what would happen if he were to throw at someone. He knew Towers had thrown at A-Rod. Why he didn't just throw Towers out I have no idea. He would have been well within his rights to do so. Clemens didn't immediately respond to the A-Rod beanball and as YES broadcaster Al Leiter presciently predicted, since he was throwing such a good game and because it was a pretty important game for the Yanks to win, Clemens would likely bide his time and wait until his pitch count was such that he would be taken from the game anyway. So when he came out in the seventh he hit Rios and was immediately ejected along with Torre. That makes sense to me as you don't want this thing to escalate and everyone was warned. But suspending Clemens without suspending any Blue Jays is the absolute wrong message you want to send.

Here's what happens now that this is the precedent: The guy who intentionally throws a pitch at someone without the specific provocation of a previously hit batter is faultless regardless of whether he meant to just throw inside or if he meant to end a career by shattering a kneecap. The guy who responds to a plunked batsman by making the symbollic statement that says "you can hit all the guys you want, but we'll clip you right back if you do" in the form of 90 mph cheese to the backside is ejected, fined and suspended. So you can hit a guy on purpose, just don't do be the second guy to do it. How is this in any way fair? Doesn't this always give the advantage to the team who hits someone first? Why wouldn't you throw at the best player on the other team every time? You know the other team can't afford to respond and you know that you will likely not get thrown out or suspended (though I'd assume that after awhile the MLB would catch on, find a special investigator and launch a 7 year inquiry into your practices resulting in a 300 page report and strongly worded letter to each team). There is no reason not to throw at someone. It's fucking moronic. Here's what should happen (SIDEBAR: In my opinion nothing should happen because it's a stupid fucking rule that makes the players seem like pussies. If you act like a dirty player at any time on the field, you should get thrown at so you don't do it again. A-Rod and AJ Pierzynski should be thrown at constantly. But since the MLB has chosen to penalize players in this way rather than let them do it themselves, my suggestion is in line with the current MLB penalization procedures.):

If the ump feels as though a player was thrown at on purpose and issues a warning, that player can continue to pitch. But if the opposing pitcher intentionally hits someone later in the game (ump's discretion), both pitchers are ejected and both managers are ejected. Since the incident has now escalated, they both should pay the price. THEY BOTH DID THE EXACT SAME FUCKING THING: THEY HIT BATTERS ON PURPOSE!

Lastly, I also think they should take age into account when they penalize players. A 25 year-old needs to be treated differently than a 50 year-old because they react differently to instigation. Clemens is old. He's ornery. My grandmother gets angry when the mail arrives at 10:30am as opposed to 10:15am. It's like George Costanza once said, "The sea was angry that day my friends. Like an old man trying to send back soup at a deli." Clemens was that old man and seeing A-Rod get hit was like receiving a cup of cold soup at a deli. It angried up his blood. It doesn't take much to set them off so you can't treat them like normal people. Plus, I don't think the penalty fits the crime anyway. How is missing 5 games going to affect Clemens? He already skips 4 of them, what's one more? If they really wanted to punish him, they should move his locker away from Andy's and take away his HGH. Then maybe he'd learn his lesson.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

I Have A Feeling Sean Payton May Not Make The Trip To The Water Park An Annual Tradition

With Jamaal Brown out with an injury and a couple other bumps and bruises making headlines along the way for the Saints this year, they didn't need any non-football injuries to muddy up the waters any further. Well consider the waters muddied:
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - Saints starting linebacker Scott Fujita walked into the cafeteria at Millsaps College on crutches Wednesday afternoon following the team's return from a trip to an area water slide park.

Fujita was not available for a formal interview, but as he waited for a plate of food, he said he was going to be fine and that nothing was broken.
He did not describe what happened before making his way to another room with Saints personnel, saying only that he "had a little accident this morning."

Fujita's foot was wrapped, but there was no brace on his leg, only an oversized sandal that fit over the wrapping.
Well that's nice. You lose your starting linebacker to a tubing injury. I don't want to make a bigger deal out of this than it is (largely because it is not a big deal) but the Saints were the team last year whose opponents suffered these injuries prior to their matchups. Everything fell in place for them. When your first round pick shows up overweight and blames the buffet line and you lose your All-Pro tackle to a bum knee and you look awful against the Steelers and your starting linebacker messes up his ankle on the slip and slide, I don't know, I just get the feeling that this ain't gonna be the Saints year.

Passed Over Names For The New Steelers Mascot

Tim Hardaway hates the new Pittsburgh Mascot.

So today it was announced that the Pittsburgh Steelers have finally decided on a name for their new mascot. The name: Steely McBeam. Seriously:
Steely McBeam was the winning entry among more than 70,000 names submitted by Steelers fans around the world. He is a contemporized version of the former Steelers logo, a steelworker, representing Pittsburgh's rich history in the steel industry.
But as has been pointed out by several other blogs (see eg here and here), Steely comes off a little, shall we say, fancy (in a Simpsons gay steel mill kinda way). So with that in mind, here are a couple of names that were considered but just missed the cut:

Queery McDudelove

Mr. Fancy Pants

Harry Cockburn

Dr. Peters

Captain Ron (He just kinda looks like a Ron)

Tristan Cockroft

Dude N. Dude

Michael Strahan

Sir Coxalot

Hans Job

Mrs. Kordell Stewart

The Butt Plumber

That last one may not was probably quickly nixed for being a little too "in your face" gay, but the other ones really seem to hold up.


Surprising I know, but the Post's headline today may be a bit of a mischaracterization.

The headline "A-Roid Shocker" coupled with pictures of both A-Rod and Chipper would seem to suggest that Chipper Jones is calling into question A-Rod's reputation as a naturally gifted athlete when in fact he did nothing of the sort. Instead, Chipper simply said that because of the cloud of suspicion that hovers over baseball due to steroids, anyone who starts putting up absurd numbers (which A-Rod is clearly doing) will face questions about whether they had any assistance in reaching those numbers:
"I think it will follow him," Jones said of Rodriguez before the game. "There's going to be the questions because his name's been brought up. If I had to pose a guess on A-Rod, I would say no. But I don't know. He's going to have to answer the questions.

"And that goes for everybody that approaches the number. It's just so farfetched, the numbers that those guys are putting up."
Ok, so far nothing newsworthy about those comments. But obviously someone thought his comments were noteworthy because after the game he was given the chance to clarify them, which he did... by saying the exact same thing:
"I was asked today if because A-Rod would break the record, he's going to field questions," he replied. "That's all I said.

"I also said given my opinion, I would say no on Alex. But because he's above and beyond everybody else on this planet at the age of 32, he's gonna field questions.

"I hope that nothing comes of it and he's left alone. I've known Alex a long time. Our high schools played against each other."

Is that why Jones would say Rodriguez isn't a user?

"Yeah, and I know he's worked very, very, very hard to get where he's at," Jones said. "Not that Barry or Hank or Babe [Ruth] didn't. But you don't see Alex being called in front of grand juries and stuff. Hopefully nothing comes of it."
So to break it all down:

Chipper doesn't think A-Rod did steroids.

Chipper thinks A-Rod works very hard.

Chipper thinks that as A-Rod (or anyone) approaches the new Home Run record, there will be questions about whether they used performance enhancers to get there.

Is any of that really worthy of a backpage headline? Before Chipper said these things, did someone honestly believe that A-Rod wouldn't be asked about steroids even though he's on pace to break the home run record by about 100 home runs? Wouldn't it be a bigger headline if the MLB said "We're not going to test A-Rod anymore because we believe he's clean"? Everyone from this era will face questions regardless of what they produce. Those who produce at a greater clip then their peers will receive a greater percentage of those inquiries. That's just common sense. So I think it's awfully shitty for the Post to drag Chipper through this just because anytime you put A-Rod and steroids on the backpage you can sell newspapers. They didn't misinterpret what he said and the actual article doesn't present anything particularly salacious, but the fact that the headline intimates that Chipper is adding to the A-Rod steroid link is pretty much bullshit. This is one of the reasons that athletes never say anything about anything. You can't say anything without it leading to bullshit headlines. When someone say something like "I don't think David Wells is a puppy raper," tabloids will run the headline: "Does David Wells Rape Puppies? One prominent athlete thinks he has the answer!" I love the Post and I add to the problem by reading their bullshit with a LARGE grain of salt, but shit like this really makes me want to save my quarter in the morning. The only problem is that I'd then not find out who was at Scores the night before or what formerly famous person that I've never heard of had too many drinks at Elaine's over the past weekend according to Liz Smith. And that just doesn't seem fair to me.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Superbad Uncensored Trailer

This has absolutely nothing to do with sports but if you had any inclination whatsoever to see the new Judd Apatow joint "Superbad," but weren't 100% you wanted to, the uncensored version of the trailer should settle it for you once and for all. I still have water dripping out of my nose from the "back / cock" comment by the fat kid. He's a comedic genius. I am seeing this film.

P.S. This is NSFW, unless your workplace is cool with the word cock being thrown around liberally.

My Love-Hate Relationship With Colin Cowherd

Maybe, yes, YES, Dude, yes, maybe after 10 beers, OH GOD NO!

ESPN Radio's morning blowhard Colin Cowherd, or as he is affectionately known in the blogosphere: "Schrutebag",* is probably my favorite ESPN radio host in the current lineup. You actually can't hear him on New York terrestrial radio (1050am switched to Max Kellerman at the 10am slot because New Yorkers don't like to listen to anything that's not about them) so I have to listen to him via the webcast out of 1530am in Austin (fyi, ads on Texas radio stations are about 4:1 in favor of strip joints. The Landing Strip in particular gets a ton of play.). He's abrasive, annoying as hell and probably the most egotistical voice in syndicated Sports Talk Radio (and that's saying something), but he's also easily the most engaging. It's this battle between my hatred of the unmitigated arrogance of the show and my need for a new and edgy voice that sometimes leaves me pulling my hair out. I can't fucking stand Colin Cowherd, but I can't change the channel either.

Cowherd's schtick is essentially that he knows everything and you don't. It's less condescending than Mike & The MadDog and far less holier than thou than the Dan Patrick show. Cowherd usually puts together just the right blend of bombast and insight so that you come away from the 3 hours (the show is 4 hours long but the first hour is only heard on about 3 radio stations in or around Portland, Oregon) feeling as though you know what's going on in the world of sports but you're not exactly convinced that the asshole who told you about it is full of shit or not. At various points during the show I find myself snickering at yet another comment about the lunacy of southern college sports fans only later to consider turning the radio off when he won't let a topic go or will argue the unpopular side of an issue simply for the sake of sparking conversation. He gets a rise out of making himself sound right and spends about a third of his show explaining how right he's been previously and how right he'll be in the future. It can be a frustrating 3 hour meander through the world of sports but at no point am I not entertained.

Cowherd's wheelhouse is college football. There are no syndicated radio hosts in the nation with a greater breadth of knowledge on that particular subject and even during the dead months of April & May he spends a considerable amount of time on the coming season and recruiting. College football is a burgeoning product on the sports media scene and he's really the only voice worthy of listening to on the radio. His show was replaced in NYC because of the heavy college football talk but probably picked up a couple dozen more stations because of it. As long as college football stays hot, Cowherd's program will remain hot.

Cowherd's weakness is everything else. It's clear he's just not passionate about the other sports and while he kinda cares about the NFL (largely because of its "relevance," a Cowherd buzzword), he never gets into the same depth of conversation about the NFL issues as he does college football. He can't fake passion but he can fake knowledge and backround, and that's when the show becomes painful. Colin never wants to seem like he knows less about a subject than the people he is talking to, so he rarely broaches topics that are dangerous to himself (i.e. those topics that he doesn't know much about). When he does dive deeply into a non-college football topic, he keeps the arguments simple and swats away contrary opinions despite how rooted in fact or truth those opinions are. When truly challenged on these subjects he reverts to name-calling (most contrary opinions are those of "mouth breathers" or "conspiracy theorists" or "message board idiots"), which is a point in the show that is both very funny and very frustrating. Cowherd is quick on his feet but when defensive he's almost too quick to cut off the potential for alternate theories to his premises (the plural "premise" not the tract of land) that have the potential to advance the show's discussion beyond the one conclusion he came up with in the show's intensive prep (Cowherd is ALWAYS well versed in the particular stats necessary to back up his specific point and prepares for certain contrary points like a DA prepping for the defense's key witness). Basically, when he's on a topic he can control and knows a ton about, it's the best show on radio. When he's floundering through a subject he pretends to know about, the arguments get confusing, the calls become frustrated and the show becomes cumbersome. Last week there were two segments that exemplified Cowherd's best and worst moments better than almost any I've heard.

Cowherd At His Best
Last Thursday, Cowherd interviewed Pac-10 Commissioner Tom Hansen and it was probably the best radio since Dan Patrick's interview with David Stern (the "pulaver" interview). If you remember correctly, Tom Hansen is the elderly gentleman who would rather eschew progress and hang onto the Rose Bowl than participate in the national championship plus one playoff system. Cowherd came out firing. He immediately pointed out that most fans would prefer a Pac 10 team in the national championship game than playing a Big Ten team in Rose Bowl that doesn't mean anything. Hansen had no retort and pretty much just sputtered while Cowherd reloaded. Cowherd adroitly pointed out that the Pac 10 is flailing and evidence of that being that the number 2 team from the Pac 10 plays the number 4 team from the Big 12 in the Holiday Bowl and that the WAC has put more teams in BCS Bowls than the Pac 10 if you discount the success of USC. Hansen tried to point out that the Holiday Bowl is a huge bowl and Cowherd just killed him. He asked him who the other top 15 program in the Pac 10 was and Hansen had no answer. Herd persisted and finally Hansen stumbled in with Cal which sent Cowherd into a fit of fact-based insults about the Cal's Bowl ineptitude that caused Colin's voice to raise about 10 octaves. Hansen was outmatched and his only defense was that he disagreed with Cowherd about his characterizations, citing no facts or stats in the process. He seemed outmatched and unprepared. By the time the conversation was over you almost felt bad for Hansen (not really). Cowherd was at his finest because he gave a shit and it came across on the radio. He didn't just want to win the argument to prove who knew more about the subject, he wanted to change Hansen's mind because he actually believed what he was saying and because he's a fan of the Pac 10. It's when he crosses over to the fan's line of thinking that and actually cares about what he's talking about that he's really entertaining and on.

Cowherd At His Worst
The day before the Cowherd - Hansen interview was the Garnett trade. Now Herd is not exactly an NBA maven, not by a long shot. He grew up watching the Trailblazers and covered them as well as the Lakers while out on the West Coast, so he's not Barry Melrose, but he's not Dr. Jack Ramsay, or even Bill Simmons. It was a slow news day and you can't make 4 hours of radio by echoing the support of the trade found in every newspaper across the nation, so he took the other side and he didn't sell it.

Cowherd argued first the fans have gone crazy because of this trade and then later argued that it's not the fans that are crazy it's the media that has gotten out of control and he doesn't blame the fans for acting crazy. In support of his argument that the Celtics didn't get that much better and will not come out of the east, Herd said that the Celtics traded away their "entire bench" and because of this trade they now can't defend anyone. Well, if he looked at the guys the Celts traded, they didn't give up one guy who can play defense (Ratliff used to but he was traded for the contract) and the two guys off their bench that they gave up (Gomes and Green) weren't exactly vying for the 6th man of the year award. The callers then started to get on him about the fact that the east is horrible and all you need are one or two good guys to get to the east finals (see recently Cleveland and Miami). Herd said no team has made the finals without more than 2 good players in the last 10 years (again, Cleveland and Miami ring a bell). When it was pointed out that Detroit has had a good run and they don't have a single good player, Herd made the absurd comment that Chauncey Billups is the third best point guard in the league (Nash, Parker, Paul, Kidd, Arenas & Deron Williams say hello) and then went on to say that Paul Pierce is not a "premier player" in the league, whatever that means ( I guess it doesn't mean 6 time all-star and 2 time All-NBA team member). But the worst part was that I think he got confused midway through the segment. After spending a good portion of the segment yelling at Celtic fans for being stupid, he responded to an angry caller by saying that he's not calling Celtics fans stupid (he was), he was calling Boston media stupid for hyping this up (in fact Bob Ryan, Boston's most respected hoops mouthpiece, immediately wrote a piece suggesting that the Celts need to do much more to get out of the East). He was all over the place and cited nothing other than overt speculation and his own personal feelings about what it takes to win championships in the NBA. It seemed forced, it didn't flow and most of all it was clear Cowherd could give a shit about whether the Celts actually had a chance or not. In a quiet moment--if ever there is one in the life of a radio blowhard--I bet you wouldn't have to wait 5 seconds before Cowherd admitted that the Celtics are probably one of two or three favorites to come out of the east. It's just that that conversation wouldn't make for good radio, and that's what he claims to be all about. And if that is what he thinks, he's missing the point.

The real genius of the Colin Cowherd radio show (and I know that I'm in the minority in the blogosphere who would declare that the show should receive such lofty praise) is that there are times during the show in which you can't distinguish between schtick and real passion. When you listen to the Mikes, Dan and the other riff raff, everything seems so contrived and calculating. The Mikes never express an authentic emotion while Dan Patrick's deadpan sardonicism gives you no hint of his true feelings on any subject and leaves you devoid of any meaningful connection. Cowherd is the rare exception in the ESPN lineup. He does care even if you can't stand the manner in which he often chooses to express his feelings. And when these feelings show through and he's not just being a "rabblerouser" (ironic if you're a loyal listener), his arguments become tighter and his vitriol is lessened and it's less about him than it is about trying to gain a new perspective on the issue and the result is fucking fun if not informative. It's not always like that (in fact lately those moments have been fleeting) but when he's on and when he's honest, I'll take Cowherd's passion over anything else that's out there no matter how many bits he's stolen from message boards and how many blogs he's crashed. Like I said, he's infuriating, but he's also fucking good.

*A Schrutebag is a douchebag with sycophantic tendencies.

Was Rory Really That Wrong?

What ever happened to the common golf courtesy like our bunny friend is displaying here?

Rory Sabbatini is taking a ton of heat for having a spectator removed after the the guy heckled him at the WGC this weekend. Apparently a guy waited the entire day at the ninth hole for Rory to come walking by just so he could yell, "Hey Rory, do you still think Tiger's beatable now?" (admittedly, that's awfully funny). After getting heckled, Rory had the guy thrown out:
Heckler Guy: ''It was the last time I was going to see him. I didn't mean anything by it. I was hanging out there all day, waiting for him to come by. I was watching the leaderboard . . . I figured he was talking a better game than he was playing. I think Rory stopped and pointed at me and asked me to get thrown out, and they obliged.''
Because of this, Rory's been labeled a cry-baby, a pussy and then things got REALLY bad when he received the ignoble "Just Shut Up" award from ESPN Radio's Mike & Mike in The Morning today. The reason behind the ribbing from the media is because Sabbatini had the gall to say that because Tiger looked a little rusty after shooting a 75 at the Players' Championship (back in fucking May) that Tiger looked "more beatable than ever." So in the eyes of those criticizing him, he brought this on himself and should be forced to ignore any and all comments lobbed his way. But here's the thing: Rory didn't really say anything.

Sabbatini didn't say he was going to beat him or that Tiger sucks or anything that would seem even mildly controversial. But because it's Tiger, even the INTIMATION that he is somehow mortal is such a sin (an especially dastardly sin because it came from a foreigner) that Sabbatini got KILLED for it. So much so that the next day he had to clarify his comments for everyone, and his clarification should have been enough. Sabbatini said:
"If you're going to challenge yourself, you need to challenge yourself against the best, and Tiger is the best. I never intended a dig at Tiger. I basically stated that I wanted to compete against him. He's the number one player in the world, and I think I have the ability to get there myself."
He was basically saying that for awhile he viewed Tiger as untouchable. And now he's playing better and Tiger's come back down to earth so he feels he can compete with him more so than he did perviously. What the hell's wrong with that? I just don't really get what all the fuss is about. But what I really don't get about this weekend's story is that some guy was heckling Rory about the comment and somehow RORY was the bad guy for getting the guy kicked out!

You see, this is not the first time that a PGA golfer has asked to have a spectator removed. In a cursory review of coverage of similar events I found two times recently where a Tour Pro had a spectator removed. And in both of these circumstances the article portrayed the golfers as victims of heckling in contrast to the way Rory is being portrayed as a guy who is getting what he deserves. In 2004, Davis Love III sounds like a spoiled brat after getting a guy removed because of this behavior:
The man let out a "Whoop!" when Love missed a par putt on the 20th hole that squared the match. The fan started yelling, "No Love!" as Love stepped to his ball on the fifth tee. Love sought out the fan and said he wouldn't continue until he was found.

"I think it's our whole society," he (Love) said. "They don't respect what other people do, don't respect your elders, don't respect other people's space, don't' respect traditions or etiquette or customs. You see it in every sport, you see it walking down he street, not holding the door open for a lady when you're supposed to."

If the heckler wasn't bad enough, Love said fans offered him beers at least five times during the tournament while he was walking between holes.

"I don't drink beer when I'm out at dinner, like last night," he said. "I don't need a beer when I just birdied a hole or when I just bogeyed a hole.

"People just assume we're out here screwing around, and we're not screwing around, we're playing hard. ... I don't come into your office and screw you up Don't come into my office and screw me up."
DL 3 pulled out the "respect your elders" card and he got a pass! His comments sound remarkably similar to those of Shooter McGavin in Happy Gilmore. DL's comments are much more ridiculous than Rory's actions (Rory did say that he had the guy kicked out because his actions lacked class, which is kind of ironic if you know Rory Sabbatini and have heard the filth flarn filth that comes out of his mouth over the course of 18 holes). Love comes off as a complete asshole.

The second incident involved a UK golfer who was previously quoted as saying he "hates Americans" (when asked about the American Ryder Cup team, Casey actually said, "Oh, we properly hate them. We wanted to beat them as badly as possible." The UK's Daily Mirror used that comment and others to run the headline "Americans are Stupid. I Hate Them." Maybe a slight mischaracterization which ultimately led to him losing his Titleist sponsorship.). Casey later clarified that statement by noting that he was talking about the American Ryder Cup team and in no way did he mean to offend citizens of the U.S., but the damage had been done and Casey knew sooner or later he'd hear about it. Well he did. In 2005, Casey was playing in Miami when he was met with this guy:
"He yelled, 'Shank it in the trees. You won't catch Phil (Mickelson). He's American, you're not.' He was just being outrageously bad.
Casey and his playing partner had to hold up the tournament for about 15 minutes while security found the guy and kicked him out. This differed from the DL 3 and more closely mirrors the Sabbatini situation as it was only one comment that got the guy kicked out and the guy was making reference to an earlier statement. But again, the article was in the vein of "woe is Paul Casey for having to endure this ugly incident." The guy who made the comment actually thought that Paul Casey hated him and Americans in general and because of that wanted to give Casey a piece of his mind, and STILL Rory Sabbatini's actions were perceived as less justified.

All this being said, I think Rory acted like a complete pussy here. He really just should have laughed it off. It's awfully lame to let hecklers get you off your game or to react in any way at all to their provocation. If you're a pro and as combustible and polarizing as Rory Sabbatini, you should know better than do shit like this. But my greater problem is that the media is portraying this as Rory's just desert for having opened his mouth to point out a chink in the armor of the great Tiger Woods. I thought his comments were f'n great and it obviously takes balls to say it because of the way in which he got killed for uttering even the most benign of utterances. It makes for great drama and Rory makes a great villain. With Phil falling off the map, Vijay slowing down and no consistent competition in sight, Rory v. Tiger is really the most interesting battle left. Tiger's already smoked all his peers, let's see what he can do with a nemesis.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Jorvorskie Lane Is Huge, And He May Just Dominate The Big 12

Not only is the production quality of the video fairly lame, but they managed to spell Lane's name wrong. Lane's highlights are still pretty sweet.

At 6'4", 260lbs, Brandon Jacobs is a monster. Probably one of the top 3 biggest starting running backs in NFL history in terms of pure size. By starting this year, Jacobs joins a short list of feature backs regularly listed at over 250lbs. That list includes Jerome Bettis, Christian Okoye, Ironhead Heyward and Marion Butts just to name a few. These guys are about 30lbs heavier than your run of the mill NFL feature back and the sight of one of these guys busting through the line has caused more than a few Dbacks and safeties to stain more than a few shorts. These are big dudes. And standing next to Texas A&M's Jorvorskie Lane these guys would look like punters.

I'll admit I've got a soft spot for fat guys who double as incredible athletes. They catch my attention. And with Syracuse not really developing any interesting storylines, I was searching for something that would get me excited about college football and also potentially meet my athletic fat guy void. I found Jorvorskie Lane.

Lane is one of the two feature backs (the other being the speedier, potential future Heisman candidate, sophomore Michael Goodson) for a Texas A&M team that may have the top offense in the Big Twelve (they were 8th in the nation in rushing last year and return both RBs, their QB and significant O-Line depth). He also happens to be 5'11" (sometimes listed as 6'0") and 285lbs (he was rumored to be above 290 at one point last year and he claims he's in the mid 260's this year). He's bigger than 4 of his offensive linemen, all of his TEs and all but a handful of the D-Line depth chart. The man is huge. And he's good. As a sophomore he had 725 yards and 19tds (this year his goal 800+ yards and 25tds) and produced a touchdown or first down on 26-of-29 carries on third and fourth down carries.

His running style could best be described as Keith Byars meets Mike Alstott. He's nifty in the open field and runs with short, Byarsesque baby steps until he drops his head and rolls over a linebacker or safety like Alstott, except Lane does it while carrying an extra 20-30lbs around. He's an incredible blend of size and skill, and is one of the most entertaining sites on the college football landscape. In all honesty, who doesn't love watching the fat kid who you usually see blocking for people finally get the ball and run over or through guys half his size? And with Lane he gets it a ton. He's one of the few players in college football who even though you know he is going to get the ball in certain situations, you just can't do anything about it. It's exciting to watch him play and for those of us who are not Big 12 fans but love watching college football, that's really all you can ask when you're watching a team that's not yours. But what might be more exciting for Aggies' fans this year is that if they can get by Miami in the Orange Bowl (no small task) and take care of Texas Tech at home (perhaps an even tougher task), they could easily enter Lincoln, Nebraska on October 20th undefeated and setup one of the biggest games to that point of the season. A win there could be a turning point for the entire program and much of the big play responsibility in that game will fall on the ample shoulders of the big fella, Jorvorskie Lane. That may be looking too far ahead considering we've barely reached August and no college team has snapped a meaningful ball. It's just hard to look at the college football season without picturing Jorvorskie Lane taking up a considerable portion of it. Maybe that's presumptuous for a kid who only gets the ball in certain situations and who plays second fiddle to a possible first round back. But for some reason I can't help but think feel that when this season's all said and done you'll look back and see Javorskie Lane's mammoth paw prints all over it.

Wyoming's Joe Glenn Is Not Letting This Dropped Game Go

So last week Syracuse sent a check for $200,000 and to the U. of Wyoming to get out of its commitment to go to Wyoming for the second half of a home-and-home series with the Cowboys. It is kind of a dick move but given that they gave over 2 year's notice and the fact that there was a $200G buyout clearly written into the contract, it doesn't really seem like that big a deal. I mean, who the fuck was going to watch these two programs have a 60 minute pillow fight anyway? Well, there is one person doesn't seem to see the renegging as a minor issue at all. Wyoming's football coach Joe Glenn(link courtesy of

"It's just horrible, and it shows no class (by Syracuse)," Glenn told the Wyoming Tribune-Eagle of Cheyenne. "We signed the contract, and we went out there last year to play them. It doesn't show much character on their part."

"I've got a new favorite team this season," Glenn quipped. "Anybody who beats Syracuse."

"They leave a hole in our 2009 schedule, so if you want to wish bad luck on somebody this year, wish bad luck on Syracuse," Glenn said. "They signed a contract to come to Laramie and play, and they didn't honor it so I'm putting all kinds of voodoo on them."

"It just shows a lot about the people you're dealing with," Glenn said. "They had no intention, I don't think, of ever coming out here and playing.

"They scheduled us, we came out there and spent the money to do that, and then they don't honor the contract."
First, Joe's going to have a lot of favorite teams because everybody is going to beat Syracuse this year. And second, is this really worthy of this much press in Laramie (this is second time he's bitched about it)? Shouldn't he be focusing on your big showdown with UVA in a couple weeks? I mean, in the grand scheme of things this seems like a positive development for the program. You got $200,000 and you didn't have to play a home game against a crappy team that no one in your area cares about? It's not like the 2009 'Cuse game was the difference between sitting home or getting a bid to the Chick Fil A Peach Bowl or something. Maybe if Joe Glenn spent more time coaching and less time complaining about an east coast team not wanting to play his shitbag of a program they'd maybe win a game or two. Fucking idiot.

Dale Earnhardt, Jr. Thinks You Stink

Here's a shocker, Nascar Fans + Heat + Rain = A disgusting smell.

During the rain delay during qualifying on Friday, Dale Earnhardt Jr. signed autographs before going out and winning the pole.
Earnhardt, who was in a humorous mood, mentioned a down side seldom noted.
“When the fans are there and they’re three or four deep on the pit wall, it’s very uncomfortable,” he quipped. “They’ve probably got somebody next to them that needs to change deodorant brands, and it’s obviously not the best situation to be in.
“Imagine being in that position without me talking about how bad it can be, but it’s sticky and hot, and everybody is getting rained on, and the (jet) blowers come by and blow stuff on you.”
Earnhardt went on to say that water is wet, a duck's ass is water tight and that people from the midwest are heavy. What do you have next for us, Mr. Wizard?

Angels In The Outfield, Vermin In The Kitchen

Now with twice the feces!

So the Anaheim Angels of Anaheim in Anaheim, CA, are playing games in a rat infested shithole and are serving up fecal burgers for about $10 a pop.*

County health officials say they're stepping up enforcement at Angel Stadium, where they've found 118 vermin violations at stadium kiosks and restaurants over the last 2 1/2 years. That's a far worse record than Southern California's other two major-league ballparks.

Thirty-three of those reports represent "major" violations, in which "rodent activity" was observed by health inspectors in a "critical area" of 18 stadium food venues, the Orange County Register reported Sunday.

In the 412 routine inspections of Angel Stadium food venues conducted by the county Health Care Agency since 2005, vermin violations were found 25 percent of the time.
25% of the time there were vermin violations? That is unreal. Compared to the Angels stadium the back alley restaurants in Chinatown seem clean enough to perform surgery in. But I think I may have figured out the problem. Stadium director Mike McKay is getting his "s-word" mixed. He's treating the problem as a mental health issue as opposed to one about sanitation:
Mike McKay, stadium director of facilities services, said discarded food and unwashed dishes sometimes sit for up to 12 hours. Whether it's a day game or a night game, maintenance crews begin cleaning around 5 a.m. the next day, he said.

"It's a matter of sanity," he said. "This group of people get shifted around a lot. It's hard to find people to do that on a consistent basis."
Yes Mike. It is a matter of sanity, and sanitation for that matter. When the director of a Stadium feels as though it is ok to leave dirty dishes lying around for 12 hours in a rat infested shithole and then "blames" (though I would suggest he is essentially blaming his own mismanagement of the staff) the lack of "consistency" in the staff situation (whatever that means) for the problem, one could argue that that person lacks sanity. One could also point out that when the person responsible for the sanitation of a large public facility mistakes the word "sanitation" for "sanity," you may have found the root of the problem.

*Burgers in Anaheim may not actually contain feces.