Friday, December 19, 2014

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Shooting from the Hip

Here's just a bunch of things I've thought about lately:

1. The Lions are 10-4, yet who have they beat? Seriously, how many of us Lions fans would be optimistic if the Lions had to play at New Orleans in the first round of the playoffs? I don't care what their record is, I don't want any part of Drew Brees, especially at home in the playoffs.

2. Speaking of the Lions, I believe Matt Stafford is the best QB the Lions have had in 30+ years, if not their entire franchise. I believe you can make an argument for Stafford being a Top 10 QB in the league. However, I feel he is a MILE from being in the Top 5.

My Top 5 QB Rankings:
a. Brady
b. Manning
c. Rodgers
d. Luck
e. Brees

The 2nd tier (6-10) gets a little muddy. In no particular order
Roethlisberger (Jewerly)
Russell Wilson (he just wins games, dang it)
Eli Manning (not necessarily based on this year)
Matt Ryan (Not so much lately)
Matt Stafford

3rd Tier (11-15)
Romo (Basically another Stafford with huge weapons and high expectations)
Rivers
Flacco (Most road playoff victories of All-Time I believe. "PLAYOFFS?!")
Alex Smith (he wins games)
Kaepernick (2 straight NFC Conference Title games)

Here's the thing: Stafford's status seems to be pretty fluid. He easily fits into either a 2nd or 3rd Tier QB.

3. The Yankees just signed 3B Chase Headley for $52 million. Don't they already have a slightly expensive 3B in A-Rod?  Seems like something is going to change at the "hot corner."

UPDATE: As I'm writing this looking for correct information, A-Rod is now a full-time DH. That explains a lot.

4. I don't think the Spartan Nation will travel for their bowl game like they did last year for the Rose Bowl. Texas isn't Pasadena. Also, the fans didn't know if it might be another 25+ years before the next Rose Bowl, so they decided they better make the trip.

5. Mike and Mike had a great rant yesterday morning if "Die Hard" was a Christmas movie. Greeny was all for it, if not the greatest Christmas movie of all time. Golic was completely against the outrageous idea and basically said the movie was released in July, so "How can that be a Christmas movie?" He also said the movie "It's a Wonderful Life" was released January 7. Greeny responded, "January 7th? That's 360 days away from Christmas! That's about as far away from Christmas as you can get! That's not a Christmas movie!"

6. Les Miles. Can we stop talking about him. Do you realize he's 61 years old? Let's say he actually does commit to UM. He'll turn 62 during next season. How long do you think he's going to coach? What, he'll be the next Joe Pa and keep coaching till he literally dies? What do you think opposing recruiters are going to say to 5 Star recruits about Les Miles? "He'll be retiring soon. He won't be there when you graduate." How many successful D-1 coaches are still going at it at age 70 (I could see Saban still winning 'Ships at 70). Get over Les Miles.

7. Does the longer UM waits to name a coach a good thing or bad? I get all the worry about losing recruits. I think I like the patience. Wisconsin on the other hand practically had their next coach before their last one landed in Oregon. Speaking of Les Miles, he signed at LSU in January. So, they obviously didn't suffer the loss of many recruits hiring someone in January, probably because Saban already had them lined up. (I know, I know, LSU is a lot warmer than UM.)

8. Dave Wright is the man. He knows he way around house projects and has a sweet DeWalt Miter Saw. And yes, I have all of my fingers still.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Losing

Ryen Russillo made (approximately) this point the other day on the show: The 76ers, a team trying to lose, are 2-20. The Pistons, a team trying to win, are 4-19. That's kind of depressing if you're a Pistons fan.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

?

How would an EMU alum who roots for Michigan feel about the Eagles upsetting the Wolverines at home last night? Conflicted?

Saturday, December 06, 2014

It's not Harbaugh.

With the firing of Brady Hoke I thought my schadenfreude at the misfortunes of Michigan football would be done for the season, but the delusional Michigan fans who think they're going to get Jim Harbaugh to coach the team are really stretching it out. Thank you.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Reverse the Curse

I've been thinking about this for at least a year or two, but has it dawned on anyone else that the teams we visited for our Baseball Trips found out-of-the-ordinary success soon after our ballpark tours? If not, I did a little research and with the exception of a few teams, the Baseball Trip should be given more credit for teams' successes and...probably deserve some recognition or reward.

I may have my 2004 and 2005 teams out of sequence, but here are the 11 teams and their results from the Cass City Monkey effect as well as what life was like before the birth of the Baseball Trip:

2000 - Chicago Cubs: Playoffs 2003, 2007, 2008
          (1998 and 1989 was previous appearances)
2001 - Boston Red Sox: Playoffs 2003, World Series Champs 2004, 2007, 2013
          The Curse. Enough said. (1999, 1998, 1995, 1990 was previous post-season appearances)
2002 - St. Louis Cardinals: World Series appearance 2004, 2006, 2011, 2013
          (2001, 2000, 1996, 1989 was previous PS appearances)
2003 - Cleveland Indians: Playoffs 2007 & 2013
          (2001 and late 90's was previous PS appearances
2003 - Pittsburgh Pirates: Playoffs 2013 & 2014
          (Early 90's was last PS appearance)
*2004 - Atlanta Braves: Playoffs 2004, 2005, 2010, 2012, 2013
          (They are the exception...we jinxed them. They owned the playoffs in the 90's)
*2004 - Cincinnati Reds: Playoffs 2010, 2012, 2013
          (1995 and 1990 was previous PS appearance)
*2005 - Chicago White Sox: World Series Champs 2005, Playoffs 2008
          (2000, 1993 and 1983 was last PS appearances)
*2005 - Milwaukee Brewers: Playoffs 2008 & 2011
          (1982. And that's it. No other PS appearance)
2006 - Minnesota Twins: Playoffs 2006, 2009, 2010
          (The other exception. They were already successful before we came along)
2007 - Kansas City Royals: World Series appearance 2014
          (Talk about a PS drought...1985 was last appearance)

*=Those years might be backwards

We have seen every team from the AL and NL Central Divisions.


One could call it just a coincidence that eventually a given number of 11 teams will accidentally run into some luck over a 15 year window. I'd like to think we played a hand in some way, more than just pure luck. We're talking about Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Chicago, Milwaukee, Minnesota, and KC. Did I mention Kansas City? AND Kansas freakin' City!

So, maybe we were just what a team needed to get over the proverbial hump to taste the post-season. Or, the missing piece to the elusive World Series.

You're welcome.

Saturday, November 08, 2014

Thoughts on Interstellar


I saw Christopher Nolan's new movie, Interstellar, last night. Here are a few thoughts:

-First thing you should know: It's long. Two hours and 49 minutes and if your theater shows a bunch of previews it's going to easily be over three hours. You're probably not going to make it if you get a large Diet Coke.

-The word "epic" tends to be overused but it definitely applies here.

-It starts pretty slow. Once it gets moving though it is pretty intense. It actually felt like kind of an ordeal getting through the movie, especially since you really have no idea while watching where it's going to end up.

-As you would expect, the visuals are stunning. And, as usual in a Nolan movie, nothing looks like a special effect. I'm not sure that I'm going to see it again in the theater, but if they play it in the IMAX theater here there's a good chance I'll check it out.

-Some of the space visuals are so innovative that I suspect they'll be stolen by many future sci-fi movies.

-The intricate Nolan plotting is also here, though that's not necessarily apparent until fairly late in the movie.

-There are a lot of big sci-fi ideas and physics in this one. You don't need to be familiar with all of the ideas to enjoy the movie but if relativistic time effects, Newton's third law, and fifth-dimensional beings sound really boring you may not enjoy it as much as some of Nolan's other movies.

-I liked it but didn't love it. As far as Nolan's films go I would definitely rank it behind Inception and the Dark Knight trilogy but probably ahead of The Prestige, Memento, and Insomnia. It does grow on you though and I suspect I'd like it more with subsequent viewings.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Worthy

 Here's a slightly reworked version of that previous trailer with an extra scene at the beginning from Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on Tuesday night:


Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Phase 3

Marvel made a ton of announcements today:

-Captain America: Civil War releases on May 6, 2016. Chris Evans and Robert Downey Jr. will star.

-Dr. Strange hits theaters November 4, 2016. The current rumor is that Benedict Cumberbatch will star.

-Guardians of the Galaxy 2 has been moved up to May 5, 2017.

-Thor: Ragnarok comes out July 28, 2017.

-Black Panther premieres November 3, 2017. Chadwick Boseman (played Jackie Robinson in 42) has been cast as the lead.

-Avengers: Infinity War will be two movies. Part 1 releases May 4, 2018 with Part 2 following a year later on May 3, 2019.

-Captain Marvel debuts July 6, 2018. There have been a number of characters that have used the name but the film will feature Carol Danvers.

-Inhumans releases November 2, 2018.

That's a lot to react to. Outside of the potential of having Cumberbatch as Doctor Strange and the fact that the GotG sequel is going to be slightly earlier I'm not too excited about any of these announcements. I have a lot of faith in Marvel, but I see a lot of ways for them to screw things up with this slate. Hopefully it all works out.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

"It'll never be over here."

What were the Wolverines thinking planting a stake in the turf at Spartan Stadium?


When you're in their position you need to hope the other team isn't as enthusiastic as you are, maybe looking forward to the next game against OSU. Now, that's not likely because because you've got a guy coaching on the other sideline that said this (emphasis mine):

I find a lot of the things they do amusing. They need to check themselves sometimes. Let’s just remember, pride comes before the fall. ... They want to mock us, I’m telling them, it’s not over. They want to print that crap all over their locker room, it’s not over and it’ll never be over here. It’s just starting. ... I’m very proud of our football team, and I’m very proud of the way our football team handled themselves after the game as well. You don’t have to disrespect people. If they want to make a mockery of it, so be it. Their time will come.

Does that sound like a guy who's going to allow his team to be unfocused? I guarantee you if Dantonio coached the Spartans for 50 more years and never lost another game against Michigan it wouldn't be enough for him. So you give that guy and his team another reason to be jacked up for the game? That's madness.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

#fatmanthrowingtd

This is every lineman's dream. But how crazy is the coach to draw up that play?

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Age of Ultron

Unsportsmanlike

In case there's any question, I don't support this type of behavior. After all the attempts on Sparty over the years I don't exactly have a lot of sympathy for the folks in Ann Arbor but it's still classless.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Shocking

I am shocked that Brian Kelly is whining about the (correctly called) pass interference penalty that took the winning touchdown for Notre Dame off the board. He's usually such a class act.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Stafford

Matthew Stafford was interviewed on SVP & Russillo today. There's a good bit where SVP asks if he should drop Stafford as his fantasy quarterback so he doesn't feel as much pressure to perform.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

"You're expecting to get screwed over."

This is a great rant from Ryen Russillo.

Friday, October 10, 2014

?

Does it seem to anyone else that the sports media really, really needs Andrew Luck to be good? No doubt he has great talent, but I find it annoying how he gets a pass on everything that goes wrong, even more than proven guys like Brady and Manning. What's the deal?

Thursday, October 09, 2014

Rich Rod

I wish I could remember my thoughts the day Rich Rod was fired from UM. I'm pretty sure I was more happy than disappointed, more glad than upset. I don't remember ever being a Rich Rod "hater." But, I know I HATED his defense. I loved his offense. The guy was a genius how he moved the ball and Denard was awesome to watch.

The guy could flat out coach and recruit. I know for sure I gave him a free pass his first two years because Lloyd Carr absolutely set the program up for failure. I know Mallet was supposed to be the next QB under Carr's system, but other than that, the cupboards were empty. But knowing what he did at West Virginia, you had to give him at least two years because of how different his program was run.

I think the part that bothered me the most was the defense NEVER improved in his 3 year era and his Special Teams apparently didn't practice much. The wins and offense gradually improved, but the defense didn't show signs of progress. Apparently he was never able to get his Defensive Coordinator from West Virginia to come to UM. But, he now has him in Arizona, which certainly helped limit Oregon to 24 points at Oregon, something the MSU DC could NOT do. The problem I had is at a program like Michigan, the name on the jersey should get you all the recruits you need to beat anyone not named OSU, MSU, ND, and Wisconsin. Then, with a last name/track record of Rodriguez, that should get you the rest of the recruits you need to beat those teams. Is that arrogance? I don't intend it that way, that's just how it goes. However, with the Michigan brand and the Rodriguez name, he still couldn't beat the rivals (or cared to beat them?). After 3 years of recruiting, the program and your name should be better than 7 wins. It shouldn't take 3 years at a Michigan, OSU, Florida, Alabama, etc. to get 7 wins. Shoot, you get 3 from all the home games against the MAC!

I believe Rich Rod didn't always do his part to keep people happy, especially since he wasn't a "Michigan Man." He ruffled some feathers and got a lot of heat. But, I also believe there were some behind-the-scenes stuff going on, whether that was orchestrated by Carr or not, to make things miserable for Rich Rod. I wonder though, what if the plug was pulled too soon. What would have a 4th or 5th year looked like?

Would I be having these doubts if Hoke wasn't stinking up the program or if Rodriguez wouldn't have just beat Oregon? You're always glad to break up with your girlfriend until she starts dating one of your enemies or she acts like her life is better without you.

Friday, October 03, 2014

The Not-So-Mighty Joba

 I'd say this is a 38 second summary of the Tigers game this afternoon:

Thursday, October 02, 2014

Catch

ESPN.com has a great article up about Jim Harbaugh. It doesn't really make me think he's not crazy, but it is an interesting read.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

?

So based on the way the last coach left and the current coach is being treated now the "Michigan Way" is to viciously turn on whoever is in charge as soon you're tired of him?

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Charles Vs. Charles

If you Michigan fans are feeling a little down here's something to brighten your day: Mike & Mike had Charles Barkley and Frank Caliendo (as Charles Barkley) making NFL picks on Friday and it was hilarious. Check it out.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Panic?

What's the level of concern among Michigan fans this week? They were a national topic on Tuesday, specifically the idea that Harbaugh could be available if they fired Hoke. You'd expect them to pick up a win against Minnesota, but will that make the fans feel better?

Saturday, September 20, 2014

98

If Tom Harmon were still alive do you think he'd ask Devin Gardner to stop "honoring" him by wearing his number?

NFL Quarterbacks by College

Since the Spartans are crushing Eastern I decided to take a look at the question I had the other day about NFL quarterbacks and colleges. I'm not crazy enough to go through and check out wins and losses, but the data at ESPN.com made it pretty easy to determine numbers. Here are the schools with more than alumni at quarterback on an NFL roster:


USC4
Virginia Tech 3
Michigan State 3
North Carolina State 2
Tennessee 2
Oregon State 2
Florida State 2
Boston College 2
Georgia 2
Oklahoma 2
LSU 2
Purdue 2
Michigan 2
Texas A&M 2
Auburn 2
Eastern Illinois 2
Wisconsin 2
Missouri 2

The two schools that surprised me are Eastern Illinois (Tony Romo, Jimmy Garoppolo) and Virginia Tech (Michael Vick, Tyrod Taylor, Logan Thomas). It also demonstrates just how impressive a run USC had at quarterback (Carson Palmer, Matt Cassel, Mark Sanchez, Matt Barkley), though it is amazing to me that Cassel is still in the NFL and Matt Leinart isn't on a roster.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

?

Is ESPN going to be a social advocacy group or a sports network? They're pretty good at one and insufferable as the other and they're taking a big step towards the latter by running "The State of the NFL" on ESPN Radio tonight. It's sure to be a balanced piece with NOW president Terry O'Neill and ESPN-W contributor Kay Fagan (who thinks we should be reprogramming how we raise men.”) involved. It's this kind of thing that would make me think about dumping ESPN, if I was a cable customer in the first place.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

?

Just how unlikely is it that three former Spartan quarterbacks would get wins in the NFL today? Drew Stanton had his first start since and 2010 helped the Cardinals beat the woeful Giants, Brian Hoyer led the Browns to a surprising victory over the Saints, and Kirk Cousins stepped in for an injured Robert Griffin to smash the Jaguars.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Inappropriate Webpage: Cabelas.com?

During my lunch break at school a few days ago, I decided to look for some Muck boots from Cabela's. Yes, our school is pretty tight on what access students can have for certain websites and filtering inappropriate content. Here is what happened when visiting cabelas.com:


It's difficult to read, but here's what it says:

You have tried to access a web page which is in violation of your internet usage policy.
URL: www.cabelas.com
Category: Weapons (sales)


I guess I should watch out for websites like Cabela's.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

QB Stock Game

Today on SVP & Russillo the guys unveiled their QB Stock Game. The rules are as follows:
Each QB has been assigned a price based upon their record and QBR (it's QBR divided by 10 plus win differential divided by four). You get $1,000 to spend and must select one QB from every tier. QB prices will be adjusted after the first four weeks of the season. Please note that any QB who isn't listed below is a $3 IPO.
The list of prices is at the link. I thought this sounded fun so I'm going to play along. My picks:


QB        Price     Shares       $
Tom Brady 8.11 20 162.20
Jay Cutler 6.39 35 223.65
Matthew Stafford 4.75 98 465.50
Robert Griffin III 2.26 65 146.90

      Total $998.25

If you're interested feel free to play along and post your picks.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Movie Reviews

I finally decided to watch "Pulp Fiction" on Netflix. It's practically worshipped on the IMDb rating system (9.0) and consider a cult classic. Here's my take: I didn't get it. None of it. Overrated. Complete waste of my time. I didn't see what the big deal was about the movie. It really shouldn't come as much of a surprise, I typically don't care for Quentin Tarantino movies.

"Sneakers" (7.1 IMDb rating, 1992). Thought it was worth watching on Netflix. Robert Redford usually keeps my interest.

"Eight Men Out" (PG, 1988, 7.3 rating): this movie is about the 1919 Black Sox scandal in the World Series. I thought it was worth watching. I didn't really understand the real backdrop to the story, but according to the movie, they did a great job explaining why they took the bribes.

"The Bad News Bears" (PG, 1976, 7.3 rating): Basically this review is about the PG rating. I honestly can't remember even a 5 minute segment that I would consider PG. The language was bad, yet no F-words. Even more puzzling is typically rating standards have been watered down as years go on. So, what is considered rated R in 1990 or later (as long as no nudity), it's usually given a PG-13 rating if the movie were to have been released in 2005 or newer. Our rating standards have been lowered. The drinking and smoking throughout the movie and the swearing, especially by the 12-year olds, was not acceptable behavior or content to earn a PG rating. Side note: I've never seen the Billy Bob Thorton version and have no plans...it can only be worse with him. I believe it has a PG-13 rating, but still no F-words.


Miller Time

So, with Braxton Miller out for the season, what is MSU fan thinking? Are the planets starting to line up? OSU will still be tough and I'm sure the back up isn't going to be bad. The way I look at it, he'll still have nearly 3 months of game and practice experience before he takes on Big Blue at The Shoe. I'm not optimistic about UM's chances. They still probably win 10 games without Miller.

The Doobie Brothers

Steeler running backs Le'Veon Bell and LeGarrette Blount will be charged with marijuana possession. Apparently there is a chronic problem in the Pittsburgh Steeler backfield.

I have to admit, I'd always hoped LeGarrette Blount smoked weed.

UPDATE: They just broke this story at the end of the TV5 Sports segment...and Sam Merrill was pissed. "Hire a driver!"

Monday, August 18, 2014

"...and the word is PANIC"

Yeah, it's time to spread the word, and the word is "panic." If the playoffs started today, the Tigers would be golfing. I'm not blaming the skipper and I'm not using injuries (off-season surgeries or mid-season injuries) that haven't fully healed as an excuse. I'll definitely blame the bullpen. I'd also like to see a few starters with the mindset of "I'm taking matters into my own hands." I'd like to see some starters respectfully tell "Bossmus" they are pitching 7 innings no matter what.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Marvel Rankings, Phase 2

After seeing  Guardians of the Galaxy multiple times I decided to redo my Marvel movie rankings. After careful consideration I decided that I couldn't decide so I'm taking the easy way out and leaving a tie at the top of the list.

1a. Guardians of the Galaxy
1b. The Avengers
3. Captain America: The Winter Soldier
4. Iron Man 3
5. Iron Man
6. Thor
7. Captain America: The First Avenger
8. Iron Man 2
9. Thor: The Dark World
10. The Incredible Hulk

Thoughts?

Get Your Groot On

What the...?

I was preset-channel surfing the other day and stopped on "The Middle" by Jimmy Eat World...on Z93!?!? Does that song make you think of great workout music or anything for getting rid of a little anger if you are having a stressful day? Jimmy Eat World is in the Z93 mix now? Are they running out of Metallica songs? Just play Kryptonite for the billionth time from 3 Doors Down.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Draft Day

The NFL preseason has started and fantasy draft day is soon approaching. So, does anyone have a plan as to the time and place? It might be a good idea to have an idea with all the other scheduling difficulties that come with that weekend.

Friday, August 01, 2014

Thoughts on Guardians of the Galaxy

Guardians of the Galaxy opened on Thursday night at the local theater (7pm not 12am) so here are a few thoughts:

-I loved this movie. It's a little hard to rank because it's so different from the Marvel films but it would definitely go near or possibly at the top of the list for me. Definitely the most fun movie I've seen all year.

-A few movies or TV shows I've seen this be compared to in reviews: Star Wars (naturally), Indiana Jones, Avengers, and Firefly. I'd throw Farscape in there too.

-You know how the movie looked a little weird in the trailers? Well, it's a little weird. I'd say the tone was conveyed accurately by the trailers. If Star-Lord dancing through ancient ruins to the sounds of "Come And Get Your Love"  is too much for you then you might want to skip it.

-The music is a major component of the movie, both as part of the plot and the overall feeling of the movie. It's no accident that the songs were featured so much in the commercials.

-The movie is really funny. Most comedies would be lucky to have this many laughs, but it doesn't compromise the movie at all.

-I don't think I could come up with just ten favorite quotes from the movie, there are that many good lines. "We're just like Kevin Bacon!"

-The cast is fantastic. I had some doubts about Chris Pratt but after seeing the movie it's apparent why they chose him and it's hard to picture someone else playing the role. Zoe Saldana and Dave Bautista are both very good in their roles, Bautista in particular does a great job considering he's an ex-wrestler.

-Rocket and Groot deserve special mention. Despite being computer animated they easily match or surpass any of the actual people in the movie.

-There is a ton of stuff in this movie that I thought Marvel would never consider trying to put on the screen. At this point I'm not sure there's much they feel like they couldn't adapt from the comics.

-If you're a comic fan the scene after all the credits is worthwhile, otherwise it probably wouldn't break your heart to miss it. It doesn't relate to any upcoming movies.

Some bonus thoughts after a second viewing:

-The audience applauded after both screenings.

-The scene where Rocket is explaining the jailbreak plan is my favorite scene in a movie this year. It's just a perfect piece of comedy.

-I love the facial expressions and reaction shots in this movie. There's a ton of subtle details that really elevate the characters.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Upcoming Marvel

In case anyone is curious here's Marvel's current list of upcoming movies or dates that a movie will be released:

Aug. 1, 2014: Guardians of the Galaxy
May 2, 2015: Avengers: Age of Ultron
July 17, 2015: Ant-Man
May 6, 2016: Captain America 3
July 8, 2016: Untitled film
May 5, 2017: Untitled film
July 28, 2017: Guardians of the Galaxy 2
November 3, 2017: Untitled film
May 4, 2018: Untitled film
July 6, 2018: Untitled film
November 2, 2018: Untitled film
May 3, 2019: Untitled film


One of those 2016 dates is probably Doctor Strange, a movie they've been working on casting but there have not been any official announcements yet. Also, they've released a concept poster (from Entertainment Weekly) for Ant-Man:


Looks pretty decent, it's probably going to take a lot more to sell people on the movie though.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Guardians of the Galaxy Extended Clip

On Dungy

A few thoughts on the "controversy" about Tony Dungy's comments on Michael Sam:

-There was no need for Dungy to clarify his comments, the only people who had any trouble understanding them were those looking for an excuse to criticize Dungy.

-Why were they so eager to attack Dungy? He's been outspoken about being a Christian.

-Dungy's comments were exactly the same comments I heard all over ESPN Radio before the draft.

-The sports media just loves to prove how socially conscious they are. It's kind of pathetic.

-If it's not okay to avoid a player because of a potential media circus then I guess all those people who hated on Tebow are going to admit they just hate Christians, right?

-Dan Wetzel of Yahoo Sports is a self-righteous jack@ss.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Why Can't We Be Friends

A Facebook conversation between my wife and her cousin Hillary who lives in Fort Wayne, IN:


Re: Justin Masterson's baby shower (Justin is the ace pitcher for the Cleveland Indians)


"...I did get your voicemail, glad you got them and that Molly likes them. I was in Cleveland for Mandy (Masterson's) baby shower. The shower was at Justin and Meryl's house and then we went to Justin's game (he wasn't pitching though). But it was still a cool experience. We got to park where the players park and go in thru their doors. Then we sat in the friends/family section. And for the fireworks after the game we got to go down and watch from the dugout! No players were there, but it was still cool."


My wife used to be friends with Mandy Masterson and Justin in college. They are brother and sister. He pitched for one year at Bethel College and transferred to San Diego St. University. He was born in Jamaica as his parents were missionaries.

Too bad the Mandy's didn't stay in touch...but I wouldn't sell out on my loyalty to the Tigers.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Guardians of the Galaxy

Another poster, this time with a distinctly Star Wars vibe:


Tuesday, June 17, 2014

!

I'm not watching the World Cup but I was okay with all this soccer nonsense until today. ESPN decided that since they're airing games on ESPN Radio they would cut SVP & Russillo down to only two hours. I'm not pleased at all. Also, the US team's uniforms (kit?) are bad, I look at them and think "Team France."

"I was gonna put it in a box."

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Kickoff

The kickoff to the NFL regular season is still 96 days away but Yahoo has opened signup for the 2014 fantasy football season. For some inexplicable reason they've done away with the old league number and password system so check your inbox for an invite. If you don't see one let me know.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Counting Down

I was going to write a post about how we're down to about 3 months until the kickoff of the college football season, but in looking at the schedule to get the exact number of days I noticed MSU moved their opening game to a Friday from Saturday, a fact I was not aware of. So for the second-straight year I'm likely going to miss one of the few games (possibly the only one this season) I was actually planning on being around for because they changed the schedule after I bought tickets. Thanks a lot.

Thursday, May 08, 2014

Ebron

That right there is exactly the kind of thing I was worried about.

Concern

Just how concerned are you that the Lions are going to totally screw up one of the most talent-filled drafts in history? With all the rumors that have been circulating I'm expecting major disappointment this evening.

Thursday, May 01, 2014

?

Anyone else think Jameis Winston's problems from pilfering seafood could be turned to his advantage? I think "Famous Jameis Crab Legs & Seafood" is a franchise just waiting to happen.

Mocking

Since the NFL Draft is finally only a week away I might start to pay attention to the various mock drafts around. But those aside, who would you like to see the Lions pick? I'm completely biased here, but given how horrible their secondary has been forever I'm rooting for Darqueze Dennard. Others I'm seeing mentioned: Aaron Donald (DT, Pitt), Taylor Lewan (dirty player), Eric Ebron (TE, NC), Ha Ha Clinton-Dix (FS, Bama), Mike Evans (WR, Texas A&M), and Justin Gilbert (CB, Oklahoma State).

Monday, April 28, 2014

?

I've heard far more today about the "Sterling Situation" than I cared to and I think ESPN and the rest of the sports media have the subject exhaustively (and exhaustingly) covered. There is one thing that really confuses me though. Here's a picture of the racist old man's mistress:


Now you might have to take a lot of guesses to deduce Ms. Stiviano's ancestry (apparently part black and part Mexican), but I don't think anyone is going to start off with white. She's obviously very attractive, but it is baffling to me that Sterling has all these issues with minorities yet spent time with (and money on) a woman that looks like this. I suppose it's futile looking for logic in the mind of such a man and illustrates the foolishness of such views in general.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

?

Even if Ian Kinsler (Doesn't that sound like a name for a Bond villain?) is mediocre for the rest of the season, has he already made the trade for him look brilliant?

Friday, April 11, 2014

RoboUmp

On Mike & Mike this morning the guys talked to Mike Schmidt about some comments he made the other day involving a "force field" over home plate that would cause balls and strikes to be called automatically. Now, a force field, if such a thing existed, would cause the ball to bounce off of the strike zone, but otherwise I think Schmidt has exactly the right idea. As far as I'm concerned, the goal of any officiating is to make the right call all of the time, preferably as fast as possible. For many calls in sports there will always need to be a human element, but the strike zone can be determined with such precision that there's no reason to keep human error or judgement as part of the game. Now, I'm sure there are some technological hurdles to clear and it may not be quite as simple to implement as it first sounds but it seems like a worthy goal to me. Why settle for less when we can do it better?

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Greeny Milks a Cow

This sounded really funny this morning, but it's better with video:

Saturday, April 05, 2014

Rankings

After seeing Winter Soldier again and looking at my comments on some of the other Marvel Studios movies I decided I'd try and rank my favorites in order since I always refer to the rank but haven't actually done it. So here's the (tentative) list:

1. The Avengers
2. Captain America: The Winter Soldier
3. Iron Man 3
4. Iron Man
5. Thor
6. Captain America: The First Avenger
7. Iron Man 2
8. Thor: The Dark World
9. The Incredible Hulk

Keep in mind last place on this list is still a 4-star Netflix review and a film I'm happy to own so I'm not exactly insulting the lower-ranked movies. Also, there's a razor-thin margin between #1 and #2; I could probably call them 1a and 1b but that feels like cheating. There's also not much difference between #3 and #4 and both of them are pretty close to #1 and #2. If you wanted to divide the list into tiers it would definitely be between #4 and #5.

Friday, April 04, 2014

Thoughts on Winter Soldier

Some thoughts on Captain America: The Winter Soldier:

-I liked this one a lot. I need to think over it a bit yet, but right now it would be right near the top of my list of Marvel movies, probably still behind Avengers and maybe Iron Man. Definitely ahead of the first Captain America though by a significant margin.

-This is the first Marvel movie to depart from their familiar tone. The humor is still there, but not near so much as in Iron Man 3 and Thor: The Dark World. It's darker and a lot more intense, more an espionage thriller than a fun action movie. For example, there were a lot of kids (and quite a few young kids) in the audience I saw it with and during the quiet parts of the movie it was dead silent in the theater. I was shocked.

-I was pretty impressed with all of the actors in their roles. Scarlett in particular gives you a good idea of just how messed-up the Black Widow is.

-The fighting is good, though there's a little too much shakycam for my tastes. The Winter Soldier with a knife is particularly cool.

-Fury actually gets to do more in this movie than all of the others combined.

-I love Cap's suit in this film. It's based on one of my favorite comic looks and it really works on screen.

-For a somewhat covert organization S.H.I.E.L.D. seems to put a logo on everything.

-How good is the movie? It made this guy cool:



-I understand why he wasn't included, but Hawkeye kind of seems like he should be a part of the action, or at least mentioned in the film. UPDATE: Apparently Kevin Feige has said that Hawkeye's absence will be explained in Age of Ultron.

-Well, he's not directly mentioned, but the Black Widow is wearing an arrow charm on a necklace which one would assume came from Hawkeye.

-Helicarriers are cool.

-Pretty major twist in this movie. Maybe more than one depending on how familiar you are with the source material. The landscape of the Marvel films will be changed a lot.

-The mid-credits scene is a set up for Avengers: Age of Ultron. The post-credit scene ties back to the movie itself.


Friday, March 28, 2014

?

After the huge contract extension for Miguel Cabrera and the total misfire on the giant Prince Fielder contract are you starting to have doubts about Dave Dombrowski? I understand why you'd want to do an extension, but that number for that many years is insane.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Busted

While I feel like I should be writing something about the NCAA Tourney since it tips off tomorrow I don't really have anything interesting to say. Well, besides that my brackets is awfully similar to the President's, which would be one of the few times we've agreed on anything. Anyway, if you were watching ABC last night they ran a special called "Marvel Studios: Assembling A Universe." It was mostly a lot of patting themselves on the back for the success of their movies (and they do deserve a lot of credit), but they did show some new material from the two upcoming films and some concept art from Avengers: Age of Ultron. You can see most of it here at Marvel's site, but they did leave out one important image:


Iron Man is wearing the "Hulkbuster" armor. It debuted back in Iron Man #304 (May 1994, and yes, I know everyone really appreciates that detail):


It's been something of a fan favorite since it was introduced and often finds its way into toy lines, cartoons, and pretty much anywhere they can make an excuse to use it. Because it's awesome. One more picture:


I'm not sure exactly how it will fit into the movie, but Marvel's really pulling out all the stops if they can find a way to make it work in the movie.

Saturday, March 08, 2014

Rise of the Machines

I happened to be looking at the sports feed on my Yahoo! homepage (not sure why it's still home, force of habit I guess) and noticed this article about Rajon Rondo and the Celtics. Now I don't particularly care about the NBA, the Celtics, or even Rondo and his Star Wars-ish name. What caught my eye was who, or what, wrote the article: Automated Insights.

Your next sports anchor?
You probably remember Automated Insights from the fantasy football season. They provide those fantasy matchup rundowns that appear after every game. That's a fun gimmick for a game, but it's a bit startling to see them providing recaps of actual contests. Is your local sports anchor soon to be obsolete? Could Sportsbot 5000 really take the place of the likes of Art Neil?

Thursday, March 06, 2014

I've Got An Idea

Roger Goodell has been talking about changing the extra point to make it more exciting. I think all of the proposal aren't exciting enough. My idea? During an extra point attempt when the ball is snapped you unleash hungry tigers onto the field. Not sure on the exact number; I'm thinking three might be best but I could be convinced to go higher. I'd also be willing to listen to someone make a case for lions or possibly bears. Whichever way you go, if you want excitement, that's excitement.

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Ugh

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers used to have great uniforms. Not anymore:


Seriously, who approves this stuff?

Obviously these are designed by Nike. They can do good work, but they seem to be obsessed with drawing attention rather than making a sharp uniform, even if they end up with an eyesore instead. I don't get it.

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Monday, March 03, 2014

?

My interest level in the NBA is somewhere between golf and tennis, but even I was surprised to hear the rumors about Isiah Thomas and the Pistons. The general consensus is that there's no way the Pistons would bring him on as GM and that there's nothing to it. That's got to right, doesn't it? Even I know Thomas was a historically bad GM (largely because Russillo has talked about it). And following Dumars? I know things are a little crazy in Detroit right now, but not that crazy... right?

Sunday, March 02, 2014

"I Heard Things"



Warning: Viewer discretion is advised. Language

I recently watched "Raging Bull" on Netflix. I had never seen it before and it was one of those movies that is usually in a top list of all-time sports movies, so I thought I'd put it to the test. Over-rated. I didn't get it. I didn't really know anything about the movie other than it was sports related, possibly boxing, and starred Robert De Niro.

Something else I hadn't paid attention to but started to wonder in the first five minutes of the movie was the director. With that many "F" bombs and that old of a movie, there could be only one possible director: Martin Scorsese. I was immediately turned off. I've seen enough (and that's not a lot) Scorsese films to know he loves using it as much as possible.

I watched the entire movie but didn't find it to be anything special. It did, however, help me better understand the SNL sketch "The Joe Pesci Show" from Season 22 (I couldn't find a clip). De Niro and Pesci make cameo appearances and De Niro keeps saying "I heard things." I realized it was probably some movie line, but at the time didn't know the reference.

Now I know...and now I want two hours of my life back.

"We Brotha's"



With all the discussion lately of the NFL banning the "N" word, I couldn't help put this on the blog. Honestly, I can't believe I haven't heard ONE reference to this movie. I know it's not an extremely popular movie, but I think it has it's own underground, cult-classic following in case it's not too mainstream.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Stat of the Day

Tonight is game #86 in the Duke/UNC college basketball rivalry. According to Mike and Mike this morning, the head-to-head record is 43-42 in favor of Duke, I believe.

But that's not the impressive stat. Apparently the total points scored by each team is a difference of 2 points.

I don't have the stat exact, but somewhere around 6,466 to 6,464. I'm not sure who holds the humongous 2-point advantage.

Just for fun, let's say Duke leads the series 43-42 by a margin of 2 points. I pick UNC to win by 2 at Chapel Hill.

Well, we can all dream.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Saturday, February 01, 2014

A Thought on Officiating

I saw something earlier this week that made me stop and think for a moment, though unfortunately now I can't remember where it was and give proper credit. Anyway, responding to the usual comments about letting "the players decide the game" it was noted that apparently the Super Bowl is so important that we can't afford not to let the players cheat. That's certainly a different take than we usually hear, but I think I agree. If the rules are important enough to put in place then they're important enough to count in every game. Why should pass interference (offensive or defensive) be okay just because it's the Super Bowl?

Friday, January 31, 2014

Fixed

Mark Cuban was on "Mike & Mike" this morning and said something interesting that didn't involve him making a fool of himself. This might be common for him, but my opinion is pretty heavily skewed due to his antics at basketball games. Anyway, discussing officiating Cuban said something to the effect of "the NBA is the only one of the four major sports that fans think is fixed." I know that's not an uncommon opinion among fans, but it's surprising to hear an owner admit it.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Legacy

There's been a lot of discussion the past week on Peyton Manning's "legacy" and what it will look like after Sunday's game. I'll leave it to others to talk (endlessly) about his playoff wins, his Super Bowl record, his TD records, etc. What I think is more notable is Manning's presence in pop culture and how much he's become synonymous with the word quarterback. How he plays the game seems almost more important than his actual stats. Whenever he retires he might not be the greatest quarterback ever, but he will be the quarterback.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Jersey Colors

Since the Denver Broncos are considered the home team for the Super Bowl they get first pick at uniforms and have chosen to wear orange (They're 0-3 in the Super Bowl in orange, quick, change your bet!) so the Seattle Seahawks will wear white. This brings up a topic that has become a pet peeve of mine: Why do the teams still have to wear white and dark jerseys? What I've read suggests this goes back to the days of black and white TV, but that's not an issue now. If the colors were too similar it makes sense, but no one would have any trouble distinguishing between the teams if the Broncos were in orange and the Seahawks were in blue. Personally, I think the NFL (and college) should go to a system where the home team gets first pick and then the visiting team can choose to wear any uniform they want as long as the home team doesn't veto it, otherwise they can go with the standard away uniform. It seems like a painless change to me.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Calling an Audible

During the game between Tom Brady and Peyton Manning earlier in the season I had an idea, and after all the hype surrounding the upcoming playoff matchup I think it's even better. What is the idea? A Brady-Manning buddy movie. Or possibly a documentary with the two of them on a road trip, maybe to Omaha. And there would need to be guest stars: Archie Manning, Eli Manning, Gisele B√ľndchen, Bill Belichick, Tony Dungy, Roger Goodell, Wes Welker, etc. How great would that be?

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Tweet of the Day


Wednesday, January 08, 2014

Tuesday, January 07, 2014

Completion and Other Thoughts

Some thoughts on the Rose Bowl and the rest of the end of the college football season:

-Having your team win the Rose Bowl is pretty cool.

-I can't believe Dantonio thought in May that the Spartans would be there in January. He must have been the only one.

-That game ended perfectly. The whole thing was movie-like in the way things unfolded, as if plot lines from the entire season were being wrapped up.

-So, I want to buy Rose Bowl gear, but I don't think I'd actually wear any of it.

-Do the normal poll rules not apply at the end of the season? How is Auburn still #2 after a loss? I don't really care and I'm cool with the Spartans being #3 (which I think is reasonable but I still can't wrap my mind around it) but it seems a little odd.

-I loved how ESPN set Bob Stoops up to be the butt of jokes about SEC dominance and then Oklahoma went out and beat Alabama.

-How come SEC losses never actually count against the SEC? I get it, the conference (at the top at least) is good, but they aren't invincible.

-It takes too long to get to the title game, I'm totally checked out by the time it's kicked off. And Monday night is a stupid night for a college football game.

-All of the BCS games being on ESPN instead of ABC is ridiculous. I know I'm late to the party on this but it actually makes me pretty mad.

-I think the new playoff format is going to be horrendous.