Saturday, December 22, 2007

Merry Christmas!

I'm on my way home for the holidays, so don't expect to see much more here over the next week.

$29 Million

The Tigers have reached an agreement on a three-year contract extension with Dontrelle Willis worth $29 million. Does this mean he can finally get a hat that fits?

Thursday, December 20, 2007

The Hobbit...

...will be coming to the big screen with Peter Jackson involvement, according to this press release. Two interesting notes: Jackson will be producing, not directing, and there will be two films, "The Hobbit" and a sequel. Yeahbuhwhat?

Batman Blitz

Okay, so the trailer for The Dark Knight has got you interested, are you ready for more? Well, you can go check out The Gotham Times, or maybe Joker's version. If that's not enough, here's a few teaser posters:

From The Dark Knight Unofficial Movie Blog:

Is that enough?

The Dog Ate It

Jonathan Papelbon says his dog, "Boss", ate the baseball that was the last out of the 2007 World Series. Says the dog: "Woof."*

*Fictional dog quote, intended for comedic value only. Dogs do not talk.

The Basement

I've seen a lot of basements, but I think this guy might have the coolest I've ever seen. Now I have to admit that having that much space in your house dedicated to Star Wars is unquestionably geeky, but you've got to appreciate the hard work that went into it and the neatness of it all. It almost looks like a museum. A museum with an HDTV. You could easily replace Star Wars with "baseball" or "Detroit sports", if that was more your thing, and it would still be cool. Nice job.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

RE: Bobby Petrino

I meant to throw my 2-cents in before, just didn't have time: Let's take a step back and remember WHY he took the job in the first place. They wanted him because he was some offensive coaching genius that could work with Mike Vick. He also probably wanted the job because of that fact alone, working with "untouchable" Vick. Can you blame him? Well, there's no longer anymore Vick. There's no more offense. Two things he was given to work with are gone. Can you really blame him for leaving? Do I disagree that he's not a "real man"? Absolutely not. Adam was right, look over at the Colts and Dungy or D.C. at Joe Gibbs for a "real man." Hey, when the going get tough, quit. Isn't that how it goes? I don't condone what he did and quitting on his team, but every reason he went there is gone. They wanted him to work with Vick. Well, Vick's gone. What did you expect?

By the way, that was some nice doings by the NFL for dropping about 5 different fines on Falcon players for their "uniform" code breaking. And...I don't care.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Why So Serious?

Mass Effect Swag

I'm not usually interested in video game related apparel. Sure, I have a Duck Hunt and a Mario Bros. t-shirt, but those are exceptions. However, I'm tempted to pick up this Mass Effect shirt. If you haven't played the game, you'll just have to trust me that this is pretty cool.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Once Again, Mass Effect

I finished my first playthrough of Mass Effect yesterday. I didn't play every single bit of the game, though I got most of it (according to the achievement), but it still took approximately 44 hours. Forty-four hours of awesomeness. Despite sky-high expectations the game managed to impress and has dethroned Knights of the Old Republic as my favorite game.

Richie Rich

Rich Rodriquez will be the new head coach for the University of Michigan football squad. As unpredicted by Adam, he took the offer. Okay, I'm happy. Very happy. I've been rooting for this guy since last year when he showed he was willing to leave the Mountaineers but then decided to stay. That was enough for me to know UM had a shot at him. Bring on the pizzazz! He was definately at the top of my list. Honestly, he was in my top 3. Somewhere with Les Miles and Kirk Ferentz. Time to kick VEST!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Quote of the Day

"If I might lend a machete to your intellectual thicket..."
-Captain Jack Sparrow, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End


This would have made a much better KITT:

I know the car just starred as a Transformer, but it's much better suited for the role than a Mustang.

Say Cheese

Picture 1: Our first Christmas tree. Yup, it's real...and free...from her parents property. Also my first real tree.

Picture 2: Possibly the best picture I've ever taken in my life. We were at "Animal Kingdom" at Disney World for Thanksgiving and on the tour ride through the "jungle" we took pictures of the various animals. Well, I wanted a picture of a lion. However, as I was getting the Cass City Chronicle classic shot, the lion was opening his mouth for a huge yawn...and I nailed the picture. Pure luck.

Picture 3: Giraffe. Beauty.

Picture 4: Best side of the elephant.

Sorry, the driver was going too fast and I couldn't get a monkey shot. Bummer.

A Joke

Adam, I don't know what you hear in the sports world about the UM football coaching search fiasco, but around here, it sounds like the world is going to end. I don't know what it was like for MSU in their last 2 searches, but everyone is calling the UM situation a joke. Maybe it is. The media is turning it into a mess and pointing fingers at Lloyd and AD Bill Martin. Now the popular talk is, are Michigan fans willing to wait another year for Les Miles. Hire some guy for a season and then try going after Les again. Some still want Cowher to at least get an interview. Ann Arbor people really hate Herbstreit now, as if they didn't before.

Andy, congrats on the latest news. I didn't hear how you popped the question, but I'm sure it had style. I think you may have beat me in how long you waited (or didn't wait) to pop the question, but I think I'll still have you on a shorter engagement time. Let the fun begin.

Adam...hang in there. I guess I have nothing else to say on that.


Couple things that bother me:
1. How can you not have the strip of blinking red lights?
2. "A nontalking version of the Ford Mustang Shelby GT500KR will go on sale next year." What? "Nontalking?" Come on.
3. "Oh, and the consumer model won't change colors or shift shapes, either." Why don't you just kick me in the groin.

I didn't realize the show was only on for 4 years. That means when the show ended, I was only 5 or 6. I thought for sure I was watching the show for at least a couple of years on Sunday nights at 8pm.

One of my favorites

Sorry for the pathetic sound quality. If you can find a better video, go for it.

P.S. I'm still working on Fritz to incorporate this into the morning worship. I think it can be done.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Truly Great Words

Picking up an old thread, great words:

1. Monkey
2. Chimichanga
3. Minion
4. Cogitate
5. Dirigible

The Voices In Your Head

Apparently a billboard in New York is causing a bit of a stir, not for its images, but for its sound. The advertisement is equipped with technology from a company called Holosonic that creates an "audio spotlight." Basically, it beams an audio signal directly into your head. Responding to some of the negative reaction to the ad, Holosonic founder Joe Pompei says:

"There's going to be a certain population sensitive to it. But once people see what it does and hear for themselves, they'll see it's effective for getting attention."

If the use of technology becomes widespread, I say we buy a Holosonic setup and put it up outside Mr. Pompei's house. Then we'll who's sensitive to it. Stay out of my head! (Hat tip: Mark Hemingway, The Corner)

Use the Force

Popular Mechanics has just released a list of "10 Tech Concepts You Need to Know for 2008." The first on the list? Mind-controlled gaming. Personally, I can't wait until this technology is ready for mass consumption. I think sports games could benefit tremendously by streamlining the controls in this way. To be honest though, I just want to throw stormtroopers around with my mind. THAT WOULD ROCK. (Hat tip: Joystiq)

"Real Men"

I think Bobby Petrino handled things badly in accepting the Arkansas job and quitting the Falcons before his first season was complete. I understand why he'd want to go back to college; quite honestly I'm not sure why any coach wants to go to the NFL, besides for the money. But when I read a story at about petrion's departure and the Falcons' reaction, this quote from Lawyer Milloy really irked me: "This league is for real men. I think he realized he didn't belong here."

Real men? You know what I think of most NFL players (and, really, pro athletes in general): They're a bunch of whining, self-centered, self-aggrandizing children with egos the size of dirigibles. They've been fawned over their entire lives because of their athletic abilities and can't stand to be told their wrong. I doubt Milloy has any idea what a true "real man" is. Hint: They look a lot like Tony Dungy.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Bring Them Home

I don't play World of Warcraft. I'm not much of an MMO player at all, excepting a week stint on City of Villains. Even so, this is pretty cool:

Would it be worthwhile for $100? I'd bet a lot of people will think so.

UPDATE: In case you're wondering, the figure above would be made by a process similar to this:

Quote of the Day

"Trust me on this: Some kids are dumb."
-John Derbyshire, The Corner at NRO


The new KITT in the upcoming "Knight Rider" TV movie is a Ford Mustang. Does that seem right to you?

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Monday, December 10, 2007


On Saturday, February 26, 2005 I made the first post on this blog. Today it reaches 1,000 posts which is, quite frankly, more than I ever expected. Thanks for the continuing interest.

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Pack Your Bags

As predicted earlier by Ump, Brandon Inge doesn't want to be a backup and would rather start for another team.

Friday, December 07, 2007

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

What I've Learned From Mass Effect: Part 1

There's no problem that can't be solved with a radioactive shotgun.

Done Deal

The Tigers have completed an eight-player trade that netted them Dontrelle Willis and Miguel Cabrera for six prospects, including Cameron Maybin and Andrew Miller. Fans of other AL Central teams were dismayed; I heard plenty about it today (especially from a Twins fan) at work. With an all-star at almost every position, the Tigers look formidable. One question: What happens to Inge?

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Grace Like Rain

Sunny Orlando... the bowl destination for the Spartans where they will play in the Champs Sports Bowl against Boston College on Dec. 28th. I doubt I'll make it, but it's nice to see the Spartans playing somewhere besides Detroit.

UPDATE: Here's the bowl schedule. Why is the NFL Network carrying 2 NCAA bowl games? Are they looking to start a war?


The Lions look PATHETIC.

"I will be the head coach at LSU."

So, apparently Les Miles isn't enough of a Michigan man to actually want to coach the Wolverines. So who's nexton UM's wishlist? I can guarantee a few from Ump's list won't be the next coach at Michigan: Cowher, Pete Carroll (please, leave sunny LA for Ann Arbor?), Kirk Ferentz, Urban Meyer, and Rich Rodriguez (if he was going anywhere, he'd have left already) won't end up in the job. And didn't Jim Harbaugh have to turn in his alumni card after he said Michigan accepts players that don't meet UM standards and then steers them to easier academic programs? It seems to me there's no obvious choice for the job right now.

It's not a good weekend for Michigan and coaches as former coach Tommy Amaker and his Harvard team beat the Wolverines 62-51 last night. Ouch.

In other college sports news, Hawaii won their last game to go 12-0. They still suck.

Sunday, November 25, 2007


High-speed photography montage.

Monday, November 19, 2007

I have to admit, I'm guilty

Lloyd...thanks and goodbye. I can honestly say I'm just as guilty as anyone else hoping you'd be finished this year. But man, what you actually did for the UM program in the same era compared to every other program is really amazing when you take a step back and look at how consistent it remained. I can't say I was asking you to ever get fired, but I was hoping you'd step down. I'm guilty. But listening to your announcement today and following the program for the last 10 years, I don't think ANYONE, even non-Wolverine Fan, could say you are a classless person. No one could argue how classy and how much you have represented the University for 13 years. So, thanks for giving us a great season year in and year out. ANY other program would die to have what you maintained for even just a few years.

As far as Saturday went, I'm sorry Lloyd, but Chad Henne had no business being in that 4th quarter. You put Ryan Mallet in for one lousy series and then went back to Henne. I shouldn't question you now that you are done, but I still have to. Why? Henne wasn't getting anything going. You already knew what you had in him. Why not Mallet for another try? Keep him in. You knew nothing was working with Henne.

Now, the hard part for Michigan, filling Carr's position. That will not be easy. Lloyd might not have had a top 5 team that often, but he was knocking on that door every year and the next guy in there has HUGE expectations to fulfill. Whomever you are...good luck. It will take a miracle to find a guy that on the average can do as well as Lloyd. But, mission number one, you have to beat Tressel. Period. That is all that matters right now. Lloyd, thanks for finishing off the Sparty's six straight times. I don't think anyone will ever do that again. I don't think it will ever happen again period.

The easy hire for Michigan would be Les Miles. No one would argue and he's been talked about for months now. If you want life easy, just hire him. But, there is a huge list. Who wouldn't want to coach at Michigan. What do you think of this possible list of Lloyd Carr successors?

(In no particular order...and disregard all speeling errors)
1. Bill Cowher
2. Les Miles
3. Jim Harbaugh
4. Pete Carroll
5. Mangini (Kansas coach)
6. Ron English (D-coordinator)
7. Brian Kelly
8. Kirk Frentz (Iowa coach)
9. Urban Meyer
10. Boise State coach
11. West Virginia coach
12. ???

Anyway, here are some more random thoughts:

On a serious note, I am curious why the trading deadline ends, in my opinion, so soon. There are still 6 weeks in the season after this Sunday. Last time I checked, a lot happens in one week, let alone six. I'm not suggesting the deadline needs to be extended until Jan. 1, but extending it into December sometime still sounds reasonable.

I heard on the AM radio this week that Fred Taylor has passed the 10,000 yard rushing mark, and apparently isn't a Pro-bowler. Wow, 10,000 yards? Is that the quietest 10,000 yards you've ever heard someone attain? If you hit 14,000, you're considered a freak. A legend. A yellow jacket front-runner. A bronze grill in Canton, Ohio. He'll probably reach 11,000 for his career. He currently has 10,117 yards rushing.

So, that got me to thinking about another good runner from the state of Florida (I'm referring to college days) who also has racked up a lot of career rushing yards but in my opinion has racked them up kinda quietly...Warrick Dunn. I wondered if he was close to 10,000 yards for his career. I really had no idea, just a thought. Well, he's sitting at 9,974 yards after today. So, yeah, I guess he is close and will reach that milestone next Sunday...if you need him.

Finally, while watching the Lions game today on the boob tube, the commentator mentioned the word or phrase "within" in reference to the Lions deficit when the score was 10-16 in favor of the New York football Giants. After Calvin "Freak" Johnson scored that TD, the Fox commentator said "that brings the Lions to within 6 points." I hate that. I absolutely hate it when George Blaha and other sports commentators use that phrase. The only time I want to hear those words in sports is when I'm kicking D'Arcy's tail on the greens and my tee shot rolls past his onto the green and "within" 10 feet for an attempt at eagle. If someone is talking about a long distance or some kind of measurement, like distance in golf, when you don't have anything to measure with, that is when I like to use the phrase "within". I feel it's appropriate in golf to say "that shot is within 10 feet of the cup." Or, "that deer was within 50 yards." Or, "I am within 5 years of retirement." Why? BECAUSE NO ONE CARES WHAT THE ACUTAL DISTANCE OR TIME IS. We don't have anything to measure it with and no one wants to. Some times it's immeasureable, so we drop the proverbial "within" phrase. YOU CAN'T BE WITHIN 6 POINTS IN A FOOTBALL GAME PEOPLE. There's no decimals used in football, baseball, basketball, hockey, etc. Take out your freakin' pocket calculator and subtract 10 from 16. You'll get SIX. Exactly six. Not 5.8 or 5.2. 6.0. SIX. The calculator isn't going to round down or up to the number 6. 16 minus 10 is always 6. You aren't saving any oxygen or using a cool hip phrase when you say "within" 6 points or 4 runs or 2 goals. Just tell me the EXACT deficit involved. Telling me my Lions are "within" six points doesn't sound or make me feel any better if you were to just come out and say the Lions are down by 6 points. The Tigers are down by 4 runs is just as bad as being within 4 runs.

Okay, enough. I'm standing on one foot on this bar of soap and I'm going to fall if I don't grab onto something here.

Thank you , I'm out.

Awesome Inventions, Part 2

This could quite possibly be, and I don't think I'm exaggerating here, the best thing ever. It makes everything taste like bacon. Think of the possibilities. (Hat tip: The Corner)

So Long

I feel like I should say something about Lloyd Carr retiring, but I can't find the energy to write much. One observation: for all the complaining I've heard over the years, Michigan will be lucky to find another coach that keeps the program at the level Carr has managed to. It seems most UM fans think it's their right to play for Big Ten titles and the occasional national championship; they owe a lot of that to Lloyd and I suspect will miss him when he's gone.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

This still gets me laughing - BIG BAD JOHN

How can you forget Kansas City Sissy, I mean Royal, John Buck coming up to the dish with runners in scoring postion in a close game? He walks to the batters box like everyone else with his 10-second "pump me up" song like everyone else. Except in this situation it's the worst possible song a "man" could get to light a fire in his butt. How is that song going to get you to come through in the cluth and bang out a homerun? (According to the game log on, he was 3-3 with a walk, 1 R and 2 RBI in that game.) Big deal. You still had a lousy .243 batting average.

Anyway, I hope that took you down memory lane for a good laugh.

Best of HK-47

Video is better than quotes:

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Firepower = Safety

If I ever buy a GMC Yukon, I think I'll buy it from Dillon Aero. Why? They sell them with a minigun installed.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007


I don't know much about Louisiana-Monroe, but I've got to respect a school that goes by the name "Warhawks". I'd imagine it must upset the PC crowd a bit.

Awesome Inventions

I think this is the coolest thing I've ever seen in the grocery store (maybe after Star Wars cereal): microwaveable monkey bread. Two and a half minutes and you've got monkey bread ready to eat. Not as good as homemade, but still awfully decent.

Monday, November 12, 2007


We need more guys like Adam Ballard in the NFL. That is, after they've finished the important stuff. A quote:

"When I’m older, I want to be able to look at my kids and tell them why they can go to any church and why your mom doesn’t have to wear a burqa."

Awesome. (Hat tip: Jay Nordlinger, Impromptus)

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Definitely Maybe

Tooth & Nail Week, Day 7:


Some gutless coward Michigan fan painted a block M on the base of Sparty sometime early Thursday. Apparently the vandal didn't realize the big game was LAST weekend. Or, maybe he just thought it would be easier when no one was guarding the statue, which is most of the year. Lame. The vandalism has already been cleaned up, leaving no mark on Sparty, kind of like how the vandal won't leave a mark on life.

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

I forgot... mention earlier: Shaun Rogers is the man. This article pretty much sums up what I thought when I saw the 340+ lb. nose tackle returning an interception. The man is scary good.

Evil (A Chorus Of Resistance)

Tooth & Nail Week, Day 4:

All-Time Part 2

Here's my definites for a Michigan State All-Time Team:

Johnny Green
Earvin "Magic" Johnson
Greg Kelser
Scott Skiles
Steve Smith
Shawn Respert
Mateen Cleaves
Morris Peterson
Charlie Bell
Jason Richardson

Eric Snow
Alan Anderson
Paul Davis
Shannon Brown
Andre Hutson
Antonio Smith
Jay Vincent
Tim Bograkos (Gotta love the walk-ons)
A.J. Granger

And the man who would have to be on my All-Time team... Aloysius Anagonye.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007


College Hoops 2K8, releasing later this month from 2k Sports, will feature 90 classic teams, including 15 all-time school teams like All-Time Michigan State. (Hat tip: Joystiq)

This brings to mind the question: Who would be on an All-Time Michigan State team? I'll have my picks tomorrow. Michigan fans can submit their own team, if they can come up with anyone besides the historically defunct Fab Five.


Tooth & Nail Week, Day 3:

Monday, November 05, 2007

Secret Weapon

Tooth & Nail Week, Day 2:


Adrian Peterson set the NFL single-game rushing record yesterday with 296 yds, 1 yard more than the previous mark set by Jamal Lewis. This in his eigth NFL game. Peterson had a lot of hype at Oklahoma, but I can't say I ever bought it. But now he's being compared to backs like Jim Brown, Gale Sayers, etc. All rolled into one. Excessive? Surely, but he's been very impressive and has to be the leading contender for Rookie of the Year.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Midnight Monkey Madness

Some zoo needs to take this idea and run with it, it would be the best event ever.

Oh! Emetophobia!

Tooth & Nail Week, Day 1:

Clobberin' Time

The Lions routed the Broncos today, 44-7. The win brings them to 6-2, which means they need to go 4-4 the rest of the way to make Jon Kitna's seemingly crazy preseason prediction come true. Detroit has won 3 straight and will play at Arizona (3-5) next week.

UPDATE: I'm amazed fter watching Shaun Rogers score that TD. He's huge, but with all that bulk, he really doesn't move like you'd expect. I don't think he was near as winded after that run as people are probably joking.

Appease Me

I'm calling for Spartan Defensive Coordinator Pat Narduzzi's head. Preferably on a pike, but I'd settle for him being fired. Seriously, if I see more soft, point-the-way-to-the-end-zone coverage this year, I'm going to throw up. Then I'm going to cancel season tickets.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Fan the Flames

I'm not as enthused this year for UM-MSU as I've been some years, but in interest of keeping the flames burning, here's my current wallpaper from

That being said, I'll probably be up for the game come Saturday. One reason? After reading some of the smack talk on the MSU Football Fans application on Facebook I'm reminded just how much I dislike many (most?) Michigan fans. Why? They're arrogant asses. Spartan LB Kaleb Thornhill feels the same way:

"It's just seeing their fans and how arrogant they really are. It's something I've witnessed. I've seen it in the stands and on the field as well. You have a hatred for them, especially when that ball snaps. I think you have to have that mentality."

Prediction: MSU will play 4 quarters of football this week instead of the half they played last week. If they win it will be because of Javon Ringer and Devin Thomas. If they lose Brian Hoyer will have collapsed in a clutch situation.

One more thing before I'm done, just imagine that dragon being replaced by a big M:

Now I'm ready.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

A Picture is worth 1,000,000,000 words

You da man Kitna. If you predict the Lions to go 10-6 and your prediction comes true, my man, you can wear whatever the heck you want. (How could Joe Cullen not laugh about this?)

Best Costume of the Year? Oh, and Wendy's not looking bad either.

Monday, October 29, 2007

What I think of...

...every time I hear Tony Romo's name mentioned:

Hobo1: "Let's give a friendly welcome to this new robo."
Bender: "What did you call me?!"
Hobo2: "A Robo. You know ... a robot hobo."
Bender: "Oh, ok, I thought you said romo."

From Futurama, "The 30% Iron Chef".

Running It Up

Did the Pats run up the score on the 'Skins? Undoubtedly. The conventional wisdom is that Belichick is pissed about getting caught red-handed stealing defensive signals and has instituted a scorched earth policy with the rest of the NFL, which only serves to further the impression that the Patriots are bullies. So will good guy Tony Dungy and his Colts stand up and punch the bully in the mouth? I hope so.

Play of the Week

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Crisis Avoided

ABC will air the UM-MSU game at 3:30 pm ET, so you don't have to head to the Big Ten Network's doorstep with pitchforks and torches this week. Maybe next week.

London Calling

The Dolphins-Giants game was in London? They must have talked about this somewhere, right? Nobody told me. I was standing in the kitchen wondering why they were singing "God Save the Queen" at an NFL game. Besides the setting it sounds like it was a typical NFL game. So far no reports or hooliganery from angry English Dolphin fans.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Don't Pack Your Bags

Prediction: MSU will not be going to a bowl game this year. A team that can't win games in OT versus the likes of NU and Iowa isn't going to beat Michigan, Purdue, or Penn State. When you factor in that MSU really needs to win 2 of those games, MSU players better start making other plans for Christmas break.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

How to NOT Make Friends

Wondering what time the UM-MSU game will be next week? Me too. ABC has decided to wait a week to decide which game it will show that weekend, leaving everyone in limbo. The best part? If ABC chooses one of the other Big Ten games that weekend (Ohio State-Wisconsin or Purdue-Penn State), the Big Ten Network might (no one knows right now) have the second pick. So, conceivably, UM-MSU might only be available in about 4 households in the entire state of Michigan, which would cause a little controversy and would probably leave Comcast with hordes of enraged customers to deal with. Glad I have tickets...

Sunday, October 21, 2007


Transformers is an awesome movie. I'm pretty shocked that a film based on a line of toys, which was itself pieced together from various Japanese toys, is so entertaining. Don't get me wrong, there's some groan-inducing humor and a few spots where you have to work hard to suspend your disbelief, but overall it's a lot of fun. They took the concept fairly seriously and ended up with a movie that's a great time. Unless you don't like giant robots, then you'll hate it.

PS: Deere needs to get in on the Transformers sequel. Look at how much publicity it got GM. Plus, a 9030 tractor or a 950J Crawler Dozer would make a great robot.

The Monkey King

There's a restaurant in Davenport called Monkey King Buffet. I suspect it serves Thai food and that the amount of monkeys would be disappointing.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

More Toast

After watching the first quarter of MSU-OSU, I'm reminded of a question I've been asking since NU beat the Spartans: why would you ever, EVER, try and run the ball on MSU? Why not pass every down? It seems pretty unlikely they can hold a team to less than 10 on four passes, and over the course of the game you're practically guaranteed to break 3 for TDs. So why run? The MSU secondary is so bad, you don't even have to keep them honest. Bombs away!

Who's Money?

That money you worked so hard to earn? Well, according to the governor of Michigan, it's not really yours:

"It's not just about me, me, me. It's about investing in Michigan. Where's the notion of the common good? It's been lost over decades because there's been ... this idea that it's your money, it's your money. What happened to, 'It's your schools, and it's your roads and it's your parks, your libraries?'"

So you see, that's the real problem with the state; everyone's too greedy, except, presumably, the governor herself. If only you fall in line, Michigan would be a great place to live, work, etc. I guess the tax increase makes more sense this way. After all, it's not your money anyway...

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Better Pro?

I came across an interesting question on Terry Foster's blog last night: Between Mike Hart and Javon Ringer, who will be the better pro RB?

Current stats for comparison:
Mike Hart: 200 car, 1078 yds, 5.4 YPC, 61 long, 12 TDs.
Javon Ringer: 132 car, 932 yds, 7.1 YPC, 80(TD) long, 6 TDs. (It should be noted here that Ringer plays with the battering ram that is Jehuu Caulcrick, who has 13 TDs, some of which would certainly have been Ringer's if he was the feature back like Hart.)

You're not likely to find much argument that Hart will end up with a greater college career, though a few more spectacular performances like the past 2 weeks will certainly increase people's awareness of Ringer. Foster says that Ringer is bigger, though their profiles list identical heights and only a 2-lb. difference in weight. He also says Ringer is faster, which I think is a fair assessment. Hart is the top senior RB in the nation and UM's all-time leading rusher. Projecting RBs to the pros is easier than some other positions, but it's still not a sure-thing. Cedric Benson hasn't proven his worth yet. Reggie Bush is amazing, but hasn't changed the NFL or made the Saints unbeatable. Larry Johnson sat on the bench for a while before he played. Who had heard of Willie Parker? In short: Hart seems like the obvious answer; but is he the right one?

Wednesday, October 17, 2007



Mandy and I finally have the internet. Well, hopefully. We've had it hooked up for two weeks but has only worked 2 days at the beginning. Some techies were supposed to fix it this morning as I left to substitute teach at Lakers (which is how I'm able to get caught up on all my posting).

Fall Ball

I didn't think this would ever happen...well, maybe a little, just not for a few years, but I umpired my first ever College baseball game. Don't get excited, it was an intrasquad game between Central Michigan's players. But, it's still college ball. "IT'S DIVISION I BASEBALL! IT AIN'T INTRAMURALS!" I'm not necessarily looking to get into college umpiring because geographically speaking...I'm not within an hours drive of any college team. So, it's not worth all the drive time and gas money...or a big ego.

Anyway, I had a ton of fun. I umpired for free but got a T-shirt and flex-fitted CMU hat (and I kept one of the game balls). Whoopie! Then again, after my umpiring performance, I should have been paying them (more on that later).

This all started because last spring I umpired with a young guy (I say young because he's actually a high school umpire younger than me...and is a student at EMU) who went to Pro Umpire School and worked in the Arizona league and the New York Penn League which is Single-A Minor League baseball. He told me after umpiring a Capac baseball game about looking into going to the College Baseball Umpires Association, CBUA, meeting next year. Last year it was in Indianapolis for our region and in 2008 would be held in Cleveland. He said I do a pretty good job and should look into it. So, I've kept that in the back of my mind for a long time and keep checking the website for information. I decided I wouldn't do it but emailed my umpire buddy from Caro DJ Svacha who has helped me the last 8 years and I know he's done a lot of college umpiring. In fact, when the Minor League umpires went on strike a year or two ago, he umpired many games, some for the Lansing Lugnuts.

I asked DJ in the email if he was going to the meeting. He said he's semi-retired from college ball because of all the travel required. Then he said, "if you want some college games, you can do weekend." He was talking about the weekend of October 6 and 7. Central Michigan was doing a "Fall Series" between Maroon and Gold. DJ was going to umpire some games and so he said I could go with him. So, DJ and and I umpired on Saturday, October 6 in the 85 degree heat. I umpired all 9 innings behind the plate and he did the field.

Oh, my performance. Again, I'm not looking to rise up in the college level, but I certainly don't want to suck. It's not an audition, but like all fields of work, it's networking, networking, networking. So no pressure, just don't suck. Thankfully it was pretty laid back because it wasn't a regular season game. DJ and I covered a few details before the game and some of the differences between NCAA and High School. But he forgot to mention (and I forgot to ask) the NCAA strike zone. Well, let's just say the pitchers loved me. I had a high school strike zone for wayyyyy to long. Yeah, the belt buckle...that's considered the top of the zone. My zone was about letter high, below the armpits. DJ finally had to talk to me inbetween the 6th inning to inform me the zone is not the armpits or letters at this level. But come to think of it, he never told me specifically until after the game that it was the belt buckle. If I would have known that, my life would have been soooo much easier. A belt is a much better reference point than letters on a jersey.

On the day, I was very impressed with how I was treated. I'm sure there was some chirping going on in the field or bases, but no one disrespected me. I could have and should have been chewed up at times. I only had 1 or 2 "Oh my God" blasts in the batters box. They were all good hitters, so the big zone didn't matter because I think only 3 guys struck out all day out of 54 outs. The hitting was better than the pitching.

Would I like to do it again? Heck yeah. I was still nervous in the 6th inning. It took a long time to settle down. I might have been better if my first college game could have been at the NAIA or D-3 or D-2 level. But, I'm glad it wasn't. I'm not afraid to do college ball, but I've got my work cut out for me. D-1 guys are studs. Rockets for arms. Be on your toes. So, I'll stick with Little League and high school baseball and for the time being, won't push the collegiate level.


A megachurch is defined as a church with 2000+ people in attendance. Apparently it is the latest buzz going around, especially with megachurch preacher Joel Osteen. Apparently he preaches to an average of 42,000 people at the Lakewood Church in Houston. There was a "60 Minutes" story on him and his ministry on Sunday night. Then, on Tuesday morning the "ABC Morning Show" did a segment with his wife. Then this morning the "ABC Morning Show" did a segment about Joel Osteen.

Now, I've seen him on TV for the last few years preaching in that stadium in Texas on ABC Family channel or something like that. I've noticed his best-selling books on the book shelves. But, I have to be honest, I'm getting a little weary of this guy. Again, I don't know him at all and I've never watched one of his sermons for more than 15 minutes. But, guys like Rick Warren and anyone else leading a megachurch make me nervous. Especially when they have books they are promoting that seem more like self-help Dr. Phil books. I'm I alone on this issue? I don't want to look too much into the Sunday night CBS/60 Minutes interview, but they didn't paint a great picture of the guy's preaching style.


Life in Ohio

You know, life might not be all that bad for a sports Ohioian. Think about the year they have had or are having now.

Pro Basketball: Cleveland Cavs reach 2007 NBA Finals.
Pro Baseball: Clevland Indians will probably reach the 2007 World Series.
College Football: Ohio State Buckeys reach 2007 BCS National Championship.
College Basketball: Ohio State Buckeye reach 2007 NCAA National Championship.

The Buckeyes replace anything the Cleveland Browns do (or can't do). Think about it, the whole state is either a Buckeye lover or Michigan hater...actually, probably both. They don't have division in their state. In Michigan, people are Wolverine fans, Spartan fans, and in some places Central Michigan fans. In Ohio, there is only Ohio State and hating Michigan.

By the way, I'd like to go on record that my preseason World Series favorite was the Cleveland Indians. I can somewhat back that statement up later with a post of something I did back in April/May of 2007. Basically it was whenever I was given the Detroit Tigers schedule. So, it could have been earlier.

Either way, not a bad time to be an Ohio sports nut.

But Ohio still sucks.

Sunday, October 07, 2007


The Spartans did the unthinkable Saturday and lost to the Northwestern Wildcats. That's right, the same NU team that lost to Duke. Duke. Let that sink in for a moment. This was a loss that goes right up there with last year's loss to ND as far as sheer embarassment. It's a good thing it was on the Big Ten Network and no one saw it. So, what went wrong?

1. Defensive Secondary: Just a sec... okay, I'm back. I had to go throw up just remembering MSU's pass defense yesterday. It was the single worst display of pass coverage I've seen in my entire life, including high school football. In fact, they looked like a bad high school team trying to defend the pass. They played soft coverage, 5-10 yds of the WRs, all day and waved at the ball carriers instead of trying to tackle them. They gave up 520 yards passing and 5 TDs to a QB who hadn't thrown a TD pass in 3 games. I'd say they played like a bunch of little girls, but I've coached powder puff football and those girls played with more ferocity and enthusiasm for tackling than the Spartans did yesterday. "Spartans! What is your profession?"

"Playing with paper dolls?"
"I like kittens."


The Spartans also dropped at least 4 possible interceptions.

2. Offense: Sure, they scored 41 pts, but it wasn't enough. They could score to tie the game, but every time they had a chance to take the lead they couldn't get it done. That pretty much describes the QB, Hoyer, too. He makes some good plays, but comes up short when it matters.

3. Play-calling in OT: The coaching staff has been clear that they wanted to establish a run-first identity for this team. So what did they do in OT? Four-straight long passes, zero points, one big L.

4. Refs: Hopefully the refs never make too much of a difference in the game and the Spartans had plenty of chances to win this one. However, the refs missed at least two very obvious holding calls, despite 67,000 people pointing them out. Maybe it wouldn't have made a difference, but as hard as defensive stops were to come by, maybe it would have.

Homecoming against Indiana is now a gut-check game. NU and IU should have been guaranteed wins that would have put MSU well on their way to a bowl game, now the Spartans are going to struggle to not be a laughingstock.

Monday, October 01, 2007

NCAA All-Name Team '07

Watching MSU football last Saturday inspired me to start a list of the best names in college football this year, the "All-Name Team '07". I'll add outstanding names as I encounter them. Feel free to make suggestions for additions in the comments.

Our first member: Swayze Waters, K, UAB. Overheard at the MSU-UAB game: "His parents must have been big Roadhouse fans."

I can't believe I've watched 2 MSU games and not thought to add Sir Darean Adams, LB, MSU.

Limas Sweed, WR, Texas. His QB, Colt McCoy, has a cool name. Well, cool if you're an Old West sheriff or a UT quarterback. Luckily, he's a Texas QB. But if you're going to name your kid after a bean, isn't there a more masculine one? Hmm, soy, kidney, green, lentil. Maybe not. How about navy?

Golden Tate, WR, ND. He's a Golden Domer? That's just too good.

While I'm thinking about names, I have to bring up the name of a US Women's soccer player I heard on PTI: Hope Solo. I hate to bring up soccer, but that might be the coolest female name I've ever heard.

"The Hit"

Most of your are probably familiar with "the hit" that took place just before halftime of the MSU-Wisconsin game on Saturday. Nehemiah Warrick laid a huge hit on Kyle Jefferson as he caught a pass coming across the middle. Watching it live on TV, you could almost anticipate the train wreck. Here are my thoughts on the play, watching it on TV from a college football fan perspective and also from the viewpoint "if I were to be a MSU fan."

1st Viewpoint = College FB fan:
WOW! Ouch. Unbelievable hit. Awesome hit. It was pretty good and plays you like to see. Here is my problem. The commentators for the game (Brad Nessler and Bob Griese) practically crucified Warrick for his hit. They were saying, "In the NFL, that would be a penalty for leading with the helmet and a fine."..."Kids, if you are watching at home, that is absolutely not the way you make a tackle."...etc. Come on Brad Nessler, he's just a kid who had the chance to light someone up, so he did. Give him a break. You can't sit there and not be excited about that play.

2nd Viewpoint = If I were an MSU Fan:
Hey idiot, what are you doing moron? Quit celebrating and get on the fumble. Because you were an idiot, they recovered the fumble and kicked a field goal...which technically had something to do with you losing the game. You lost by 3, that field goal gave them 3. Seriously, after he made the field goal to put the Badgers up by 6 at the half, I wondered if somehow that "hit" would come back to haunt the team. Was there anyway this was a bad thing? And then it hit me. Because he was celebrating and could have jumped on the fumble, those 3 points were going to decide the game. Sure enough, it did.

All in all, it was a bang-bang play and I'm not totally convinced he would have been able to change his direction and reverse all his momentum after the collision to get on the ball that wasn't exactly bouncing around.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Bell Cow

When a commentator calls a football player the "bell cow" of the defense or offense, do most people have any idea what that means? Most people haven't lived with a herd of cows just outside their window. Doesn't most of America find the term a litte confusing?

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Slouching Towards Bethlehem

With the new deal between the UAW and GM the automaker has apparently staved off what some analysts were calling "Armageddon." Can the state do the same thing? The deadline for a new budget is looming and the governor still insists that has had a 12% drop in median income since 2000 needs higher income taxes. A government shutdown could finish off what's left of the state's reputation economically. Is there any way out?

Sunday, September 23, 2007


The Spartans final score in their 31-14 victory over Notre Dame was a trick play, not a botched one, according to Coach Mark Dantonio. "He waved the ball a little bit at the ground. That is a called play. We've practiced that since the spring. Every time it gets us (the defense)." It was a brilliant call since Hoyer had killed a potential MSU scoring drive with a fumbled snap earlier in the game. The win put MSU at 4-0 for only the fourth time since 1967 (that sounds kind of pathetic). It's also the first time ND has gone 0-4 in 119 years of playing football.


You'd think the Lions have never seen a screen pass before. Geez.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

This is only a test

A group recently did a study to see how much college students knew about American history and political theory. The results were hideously depressing, with no school tested averaging better than a "D", including Ivy leagues, which where actually worse than average.

Take the test here:

Post your results in the comments, if you dare.


It's "International Talk Like A Pirate Day" today. I feel sad because I didn't find out until 5pm (this would have never happened at my old job). Anway, celebrate as you will.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007


"Orch Dork"

There's an interesting interview at Yahoo! Sports with Detroit WR Roy Williams. Check it out.

Higher Standards

Donovan McNabb thinks that black quarterbacks face greater scrutiny than white QBs, partly because there are relatively few of them, also because he thinks there are many who didn't want to see them playing the position. (Quick demographic note: according to Wikipedia, the US population is 12.12% African American. There are 32 NFL starting QBs, 12.12% would be 3.8784. There are currently 6 black starting QBs, which is 18.75% of the total. So, in comparison with the rest of the population, black QBs are actually overrepresented.)

Is this true? The most direct comparison I can think of is Charlie Batch vs. Joey Harrington. My perception would be that Batch actually had it easier than Harrington, but maybe I'm wrong. Vick had taken significant criticism before his recent troubles, but he also had a completely unique style that played a large part in the controversy. McNabb was also known for his ability to move, at least at the beginning of his career. Could it be that the amount of criticism of some black QBs has to do with how heavily they are marketed (cough, Vick, cough) BEFORE they've become true stars? What do you think?

Monday, September 17, 2007

Quote of the Day

"They just jumped on us like a spider monkey."
-San Diego fullback Lorenzo Neal after a 38-14 loss to the Patriots.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Starting Over

Notre Dame is so bad that Charlie Weis has decided to start the season over. The losses won't go away, but the Irish are treating today like the first day of training camp. They need to, given how historically awful they are. They have -4.7 rushing yds on the season. Yup, that's three games and less than zero rushing yards. It makes me a little nauseous just typing it. If they lose to MSU next weekend, and they should with MSU having a last year's embarassment to avenge, they will be 0-4 for the first time in team history, and 10 losses doesn't seem out of the question when you look at the schedule.


680 items from Tiger Stadium are being auctioned off starting today, according to the Detroit News. So, if you've always wanted the home dugout urinal, check out this link. It's overwhelmed by traffic right now, but it should be up sometime soon.


Russell Crowe is a Michigan fan? How did THAT happen? He's from Australia for crying out loud. MSU is going to have to get Gerard Butler to give a speech before the MSU-UM game.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

What is your profession?

One more clip for the day: MSU's new 3rd down cheer. Forget jingling keys. (It's not quite edited down enough, but close.)

You Can't Handle the Truth

I can't really add anything to all the talk about the Patriots videotape scandal. However, I really liked this article about it. Why? Because I love that Trent Green compared Bill Belichick to Col. Jessep in "A Few Good Men." Funny 'cuz it's true. Also, it gives me a perfect excuse to post this:


Friday, September 14, 2007


I think Troy got a hold of some old CCHS uniforms:

Maybe not, but it sure caught my attention when I saw the game on TV.

Monday, September 10, 2007


Dead Sound of Misery

Just how bad can it get for Michigan? Senior QB Chad Henne will not play against Notre Dame. Now, the Irish have looked every bit as awful as the Wolverines, but you hate to lose one of your best players. But don't worry Michigan fans, Mike Hart says the Wolverines will win the game.

One more thing: How many teams are putting a "Statue of Liberty" play in their offense this week?

Wednesday, September 05, 2007


Tuesday Morning Quarterback has long decried punting in various situations where going for it would prove more beneficial. Now, with the backup of statistics from 10,000 simulated games, TMQ has unveiled the new sure-fire punting rules that will increase your odds of winning:

• Inside your own 20, punt.

• From your 21 to 35, go for it on fourth-and-2 or less.

• From your 36 to midfield, go for it on fourth-and-3 or less.

• From the opposition 49 to opposition 30, go for it on fourth-and-4 or less.

• From the opposition 29 to opposition 3, go for it on fourth-and-3 or less.

• From the opposition 2 or 1, go for it.

• Exception: inside the opponent's 25, attempt a field goal if it's the fourth quarter and a field goal causes a tie or gives you the lead.

TMQ also saw Michigan's upset loss coming, sort of. Here's a quote from last year:

"It's coming – I can feel it – the Revenge of the Cupcakes is in the air. College football's second echelon is tired of being hired to be clobbered. Sometime this season, a cupcake team is going to stage a major upset of a top 25 school. Thus sayeth the football gods."

There's also the expected TMQ all-haiku NFL season predictions. Read it all here.

Piling On

The University of Michigan joins the "Directional Michigan" schools(Central, Eastern, Western) in ESPN's Bottom 10 this week. Ouch. At least the Wolverines have Notre Dame to keep them company.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007


That sound you heard is Michigan falling out of the Top 25, a drop which ranks among the largest single-week drops in college football history. If you're looking for some perspective, here's a list of the biggest upsets in college football history. No, Michigan isn't #1 on the list.

Monday, August 27, 2007

The Draft

When are we doing the Draft?

Saturday, September 1, not good.
Sunday, September 2 is best for me.
Monday, September 3, no good.

I think everything else is fine during the week. I have to look at the next weekend to see if Friday or Saturday will work.

Thursday, August 23, 2007


Ever wonder what you'd look like as a character from The Simpsons (or Futurama)? No? Oh well, move along then. But if you, check out this site. As you can see from my picture, it's not dead on, but it does sort of bear a resemblance. It's a good way to kill a few minutes. Enjoy.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

The Old Man

Fifty-nine-year-old Mike Flynt is about to become the oldest man to play college football. He's made the roster at Division III Sul Ross State. He says his biggest regret in life is getting kicked of his college football team before his senior year. His goal now is "helping a bunch of young men to make up for those guys that I let down." In case you're wondering who's crazy enough to play college football at 59, well, let's just say he played for Odessa Permian in high school. What does his wife think? "I feel like I'm married to Peter Pan." I don't think that was supposed to be a compliment.

Baby Barrigar

Bleeding Edge Brazil

For someone who works in manufacturing, this article about one of Ford's Brazilian plants is fascinating reading. Everyone else will probably find it interesting as well. The plant is state-of-the-art, employing lean manufacturing and just-in-time practices, and it has suppliers integrated directly on the floor (I think I'm work-geeking out a little here). Ford would love to build plants like this in the U.S., except the UAW would never allow it. So, Ford struggles to make a profit, union membership shrinks, and Michigan's economy is in the toilet. Good job, UAW.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Because I Can

"And then it all blew up."

Michael Vick is going to plead guilty. Here's Pat Forde on Vick's fall and Len Pasquarelli on the situation the Falcons find themselves in.

Can Vick ever come back from this? Assuming he becomes eligible to play again soon enough to be physically viable, who would want him? Teams always are looking for QBs, but Vick was debated before his legal troubles. It seems pretty unlikely that he'll ever become a good passing QB now. Who would take the risk?

One more thought: does this make Marcus the "good" brother?

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Final Thoughts

I'm going to be offline in a couple of days, so here's where we stand on the fantasy football season:

I. All the changes have been made to the league settings, so check them out and make sure you're good with them BEFORE the draft. If you don't bring it up now, don't whine about it later.

II. Here's the draft order if we stick with our system from previous years:

1. Kid Loe
2. Ross
3. Barrigar
4. Andy
5. Adam
6. Haag
7. Schott
8. Fritz
9. Rick
10. Rusty

I also would understand if we wanted to randomly select draft position before the draft, with the stipulation that the teams that ended #1 or #2 last year cannot have the #1 or #2 pick this year.

III. Where's the draft party? When does it start? Are we getting a board, using a computer and projector, or a TV?

IV. The last two need to sign up.

V. Are there any other issues?

Friday, August 17, 2007


How come the guys who have never played fantasy football with us are signed up before Fritz and Ross? Just wondering.

Open Bat Night


That would be my stat line in a baseball tournament last Saturday at Graham Field in Caro: innings, hits, runs, earned runs, walks, hit batters, and strikeouts. Let me start by reminding everyone that I wasn't a pitcher in high school and I've done nothing more than throw batting practice since high school. I have no idea how many hits I gave up. Rarely did they cream my fastball. But rarely could I just blow it by them for strike 3. I never had an "out" pitch. I could get 2 strikes on a batter many many times, but just not the 3rd.

First, I'll hit the positives of the experience:

1. Only 1 walk...first batter of the entire game. But I did hit 2 guys later in the game.
2. I pitched all 7 innings.
3. I didn't get mercied.
4. I had 7 strikeouts, give or take (we had a terrible scorebook guy...where were you Adam!?)
5. I threw a shutout in 4 of the 7 innings.
6. Only gave up one homerun (first inning curveball). The guy who hit it played for Mott College in Flint (didn't know they had a team).
7. Gave up 5 runs in the first inning and only 5 in the final six innings.

1. Needed to change up the pitches more (which I did because I pitched 4 shut out innings in the final 6 innings.)
2. Needed a catcher to move the glove around more to try and hit corners and change locations.
3. Run support. It wasn't too promising for us to score many runs. We nearly had 4 automatic outs in our line up of 10 batters.
5. No real team. We had 3 high school players from Caro, 1 from Reese, 5 from Owen-Gage, and then me.

We only had 2 pitchers on the team; me and a kid from Owen-Gage. I've umpired for him pitching so I already knew what he had to offer...nothing. I didn't know what I had to offer so I was taking the mound. After the 4th inning, I said to the other pitcher, "Eric, are you leading off in the 5th inning?" "Yes." "After you bat, warm up your arm. I don't know how much more I've got."

But then I shut them out in the 5th, so why come out of the game, right? I had 2 outs in the 6th and no runs scored and no runners on base. Then I had 2 runners on base and gave up a hit over the second baseman's head. He was our weakest and shortest player on the team and I think anyone else could have jumped high enough to catch the ball and save those 2 rums from scoring. He he would have caught the ball, I would have had 5 total shutout innings. And then I had a shutout in the 7th, so can you blame me for pitching all 7? I don't mind getting raked and throwing batting practice. I'm not upset because I hit their bats. If I start walking guys, which I never did, then I'm staying in. Walks are boring and lead to runs.

Also, this was supposed to be an "Owen-Gage" team. The only O-G players that showed up didn't arrive until exactly game time, 10 a.m. Then, another one didn't show up until after the first inning. I know I may have bullied my way on the team and bullied my way onto the mound, but if you aren't going to show up until game time, then I don't feel bad "mound hogging" the whole game.

Batting: 1-3, (1B, 1 RBI)

My first time up I laced a single up the middle to bring in our 2nd run in the first inning. After that, the team "shut down" and we never scored again. Or maybe 1 more run. We lost 10-2. Their pitcher is the assistant coach to the Millington Varsity team. I guess he pitched for Northwood in college back 5-10 years ago.

1st Inning: RBI single
3rd Inning: Fly out to Left Field
7th Inning: Ground ball back to pitcher

All in all, it was a blast and can't wait to pitch again.

Finally, a good friend of mine lives by this philosophy:

"If you don't walk anybody, you'll probably be in the game." (Nathan Fritz)

Well Nathan, I only walked 1 guy...but was never really in the game.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Dan Patrick...COME ON DOWN!

There may be a slight rumor out there that Dan Patrick may have been contacted to host "The Price Is Right." You can do your own investigating and comment later.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007


Five people are currently signed up for the league (Adam, Andy, Haag, Rick, and the Kid). I'd suggest the rest of you sign up ASAP so we can make sure everything is ready by draft day. Go here to sign up, league ID 1880, password monkie.

I'd also like to take the opportunity to welcome Rick to the league. I expect there's going to be much smack talk this season, so I'll lay the groundwork now:

I think that will give us enough material to be on Rick "Norwegian Blue" Parrott all season.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

more from IMAO

Know Thy Enemy: Anti-War Activists

* What does an anti-war activist think is important enough for people to die for? Only his own ego.

* Just because an anti-war activist prefers to wave signs and annoy America when America is threatened doesn't mean he hates America. It means he really hates America.

* America also hates him.

* The easiest way to defeat anti-war activists is to declare war on them. You can then easily pick them off while they protest anyone of them that tries to fight back.

* Anti-war activists feel that Vietnam was their biggest success. They hope that the countless slaughtered after America's retreat knew that at least they were helping some privileged Americans feel good about themselves.

(the full list here)

"With the 3rd pick in the 2007 Fantasy Football Draft...

...Nathan selects..."

Thats right, I drew out of the magical hat on Sunday evening the coveted 3rd pick in a 12 team league. That's a little better than the 11th pick I was "screwed" with last year. I wasn't really screwed because I managed to win the playoffs after sneaking in the 8 team playoff bracket with a 6 seed.

So, who should I draft at #3? Suggestions...ADAM?

Speaking of FF, we need to get Rick Parrott. I'll put a call into him to get some email address out of him. Also, I think we have a 10th guy. I talked to Rusty Hudson last week at Brown City Church Camp and he said he'd play.


Saturday, August 11, 2007

I'm still here....

I just haven't had much to post.

Haag, I forgive you for comparing me to Bader.

Thursday, August 09, 2007

I'm Batman

If killing 4 bats in 4 nights doesn't earn me the honor of being a bat man, then how many do I have to kill? For those keeping score at home, that would be two in the garage, one in the dining room, and one in the basement. For those tracking the weapons used, two by hand, one by broom, and one with tennis racket.

Now, I didn't actually kill the bat with those weapons, it's just what I used to knock them out of the air. Then again, swinging with my open hand and hitting the bat "right on the screws" so it slammed into the garage door like a Looney Tunes cartoon, that may have given it brain damage. Oh, and smashing the winged mouse with the tennis racket like it was an Andy Roddick lob over the net into the corner of the wall might have ruined his weekend.

Nathan: 4
Bats: 0


No, I'm not a big fan of the numbers 0 and 8, that is the date of the 2008 Summer Olympics which begins exactly one year from yesterday. Oh, and then we have the excitement of the Presidential election!



Who Cares

Man, 2008 is really going to suck. I'm already tired of the Election and one night of Olympic promos being slammed down my throat.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Mythbusters - Special Baseball edition

I was at my parents house tonight which meant I had 75 channels at my fingertips. I just happened to be surfing and around 7:30 I saw a promo on the Discovery channel for tonights "Mythbusters" episode. I thought I'd tune in at 9pm to watch it. My first question is: I haven't watched cable TV in a long time or the Discovery channel and I'm a huge baseball fan, and the night I decide to watch some TV, they do a Mythbusters special on baseball myths. What are the odds of this happening? If I wouldn't have been at channel 49 when the promo commercial came on, I'd missed it completely. Plus, it's not like I'm a diehard "Mythbuster's" guy. I enjoy it, but I've only seen a few.

Anyway, I was a little confused when they proved the myth about corking a bat. In baseball, it's illegal to cork a bat. Why? According to Mythbusters, it puts the batter at a disadvantage. So, why would MLB say it's illegal? If the batter wants to help the defense, then he's just an idiot. I must be missing something. There must be a reason back in 2003 that Sammy Sosa used a corked bat. If corking the bat doesn't hit the ball farther, then why is it so taboo to cork a wooden bat and why is it illegal? How is it cheating? If it decreases the speed of the ball rebounding off the bat, why is that the pitchers problem?

Second, I was really hoping they would prove the myth about sliding into first base or just running through the bag. Instead they proved the myth that sliding into a base you can't run through is faster than trying to run to a base and coming to a stop on the base. Who was debating that? Of course it will be faster to slide. You have to slow down in order to stop on the bag...or you'll keep going and be called out. Sliding helps keep your speed into the bag.

I understand that if it was faster to slide head first into first base to beat out a throw, then everyone would be doing it. But they're not. Also, track stars would be diving across the finish line instead of running with their chests forward. But still, I feel it needs to be proved because once in awhile you'll see a MLB player dive into first base to beat the throw. So, is it faster or not? Prove that.

Meant to Live

Interesting Fact

I was just reading this article at and learned that Tony Dungy is the first coach to beat all 32 NFL teams. This begs the question: How many coaches have beaten every team in the league at the time they were coaching? Also, how many other coaches are close? Is there someone who's beaten, say, everyone but the Ravens (how many times would you count the Browns?)?

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Thoughts From An Umpire

This is something that I have been thinking about and has been laid on my heart since the second week of May 2007 while I was at the Central Region Little League Umpire School in Indianapolis.

I’ve been an umpire for 10 years and “hard core” the last 4 years. I’ve seen and experienced a lot in umpiring that I feel parallels the life and role of a Christian. In fact, I’ve felt such a similar comparison between the two lifestyles that I’ve had to write all my thoughts down to point out the direct relationship I’ve noticed. I’m sure the list could go on and on, but here are the main points that have hit me the hardest this year when comparing the life of an umpire to the life of being a Christian. The list that follows isn’t really any particular order, just which thoughts came to mind first.

1. Being an umpire needs to be fun. I think the same should go for being a Christian.

2. Anyone can be an umpire. Anyone can be a Christian.

3. Know your rulebook. You can never know all or too much of the baseball rules. Last time I checked, you also can’t know all or too much of the Bible. Keep studying!

4. Know ALL the rules. There is a reason every rule was written. It might not make sense now and you may never need to apply it, but know it. That concept hit me hard when thinking about Bible study. How well do I know God’s word? How well do I know those awesome verses? Verses (rules) I have read that don’t make sense now, but I have a feeling will come to light in the future. You never know when you’ll have to apply that perfect baseball rule. You also never know when you’ll have to apply that perfect verse!

5. As an umpire, I’ve definitely screwed up. Oh, and as a Christian, I’ve definitely messed up.

6. Our job as umpires is to be a great example for all umpires. We should always be trying to find new umpires and train them to be good umpires. We are to be shepherds of men, fishers of new believers, and showing others what it means and takes to be a Christian (Umpire) and follower of Christ.

7. To be a good umpire, it takes hard work, dedication, commitment, and being willing to be embarrassed or be under heavy pressure with all the attention on what you do or say (in the limelight). If you are in the faith, people with put you under a microscope. How will you react if something doesn’t go as planned and all your fireworks are floating in the lake?

8. An umpire has to wear protection or we’ll be pounded. We need the armor of God or Satan will pound us. Our Bible (“Cup”) is our most important.

9. We need to encourage and support and build each umpire up. We’re all on the same team. The guy you are umpiring with might miss a call. We need to look out for our Christian brothers and pray for them and keep them accountable. It’s not about being the best umpire (Christian) out there.

10. Some umpires have an observer rating them during games. During every “game,” God is rating EVERYONE.

11. Umpires have to continually train to get better. They have to go to camps, clinics, and meetings. If you want to get closer with God, going to church, reading the Bible, and going to Bible study are key.

12. Umpires can’t let one bad call bother them. They have to forget and move on. No one is perfect. We try to be, but we’ll screw up. We’re human. Christians also can’t get down on themselves for every sin they commit. We’re going to make mistakes. We have to forget, move on, and ask for forgiveness. We’re human.

13. An umpire’s appearance constitutes 90% of people’s perceptions before they even walk on the field. If we look sharp, we can at least look like an umpire without doing or saying anything. We can also appear to be Christians, but the outside has to match the inside.

14. Whether you are young or old, experienced or inexperienced, you are still an umpire. The same philosophy goes for the Christian walk.

15. Some umpires are better than others. Some Christians are stronger than others.

16. If you are out of position on the field, it may be tough to convince people you made the right call. If you are in the wrong crowd or environment, it may be tough to convince strangers you are a Christian.

17. It’s very hard to umpire by yourself. The more guys on the field, the easier your day becomes. Well, the more bothers you can have fighting with you, the easier your walk will be.

18. Don’t go looking for boogers. Don’t check every defensive players glove to make sure it is the legal size. Once you start doing that, people will be questioning every call you make and how you make it. Don’t look for the speck in someone else’s eye while ignoring the log in your own.

19. Before every game, umpires “pregame” with their fellow umpire how they will handle various situations. Before you start your day, you should “pregame” with God for wisdom and guidance on (unknown) various situations.

20. Umpires make tons of calls in their career. Some bad, some worse. We do tons of things before we leave this life as Christians. Some bad, some worse.

21. We all have things to work on to make ourselves better umpires. Calling the balk is always tough in baseball. We all have things to work on to make ourselves more honorable before God. Some sins are more difficult to conquer than others. Maybe smoking is a struggle. Maybe it’s alcohol. It might take lots of time and determination to overcome those pitfalls.

You can take any profession and draw these same conclusions and parallels with what the Christian walk is all about. You could be a teacher, custodian, fast-food restaurant worker, pharmacist, etc. Whatever you do, it is the same for any profession with how your job and life should parallel what it takes to be a Christian.

This is something that has really hit me more this year than any other. Sitting in that classroom at umpire school, I really began to see beyond umpiring. I feel I have a bigger job to do than just call balls and strikes. I have two great umpire friends/mentors (Doug and DJ) who have kicked my butt the last 6 years to be a better umpire. As far as I can tell, neither one of those guys has a personal relationship with Christ. What have I been doing for them the past 6 years? Do I have the same passion for being a Christian as I do for being an umpire? Do I have the same desire to lead people to Christ as Doug and DJ have for developing umpires? Do I enjoy being a Christian as much as I do being an umpire? Am I a Christian umpire, or just an umpire? Do people see the difference?

Who are you? What profession are you in?

Sunday, August 05, 2007


Need some help with fantasy football rankings? FoxSports has a list of the top 500 players right here.

Joey's The Man

With Michael Vick suspended, perhaps indefinitely, Joey Harrington is the man in Atlanta, and he's feeling pretty good about it. Harrington says he's much more comfortable in Petrino's offense than Detroit's much-maligned version of the West Coast offense.

I'm going to go out on a limb here: I think Harrington's going to have a successful season. I'm not saying Pro Bowl, but definitely top half of the league (I know, talk about faint praise). Just where would it leave Atlanta if they were successful with Joey and not Vick? This could be interesting to watch.

Friday, August 03, 2007


Calvin Johnson has ended his holdout, signing a contract with the Detroit Lions worth $64 million, $27 million guaranteed. Johnson participated in camp today, practicing with the first team. In other news, the Lions place Drew Stanton on injured reserve after arthroscopic knee surgery, ending his season.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

RE: I'm Straight!

Here you go:

(Do you know how hard it was to find an SI cover in a web search that wasn't the swimsuit issue? But that would just have been disturbing, your mug on Heidi Klum's body.)