Posted by: rubezing | March 5, 2010

My Hat’s Off To ……

UK finished SEC play trailing only the Lady Vols for the best record. The Cats will play Auburn today in the SEC tourney. Tip-off is scheduled for 2:30 p.m.

My hat’s off to the University of Kentucky Women’s Basketball Team. 

The Lady Cats were the pre-season pick to finish 11th in the SEC.  Last year, the Cats went 16-16 in the season with a 5-9 record in the SEC.  This year Matthew Mitchell’s Cats post a season record of 23-6 overall, a school best 11-5 in the SEC and finish the regular season ranked 19th in the country.

A freak season?  Not according to their peers.  The season awards have been announced and, if this was the Olympics, the UK Cats have swept the podium. Drum roll please, here are the Wildcats that won SEC post-season awards:

Coach of the Year:  Matthew Mitchell, Kentucky

Player of the Year:  Victoria Dunlap, Kentucky

Freshman of the Year:  A’dia Mathies, Kentucky

1st Team All-SEC:  Victoria Dunlap

2nd Team All-Sec:   A’dia Mathies

All-Freshman Team:  A’dia Mathies

All-Defensive Team;  Victoria Dunlap

Only one other team has won the SEC coach, player, and freshman of the year awards in the same year, the 1998 UT Vols that went on to win the National Championship.  Congratulations to Coach Mitchell, Victoria Dunlap, and A’dia Mathies for an outstanding season and Good Luck for the post-season.

My hat’s off to Canada, oh, Canada.  The XXI Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver, Canada concluded with the closing ceremony on Sunday.  It is a daunting task to expose your country to the eyes of the entire world to host a world-wide event of this caliber.  

The Canadian Olympic committee, the people of Canada and the Canadian Olympic Teams represented their country with the high level of class one expects at the Olympics and should be proud of their efforts.

My hat’s off to the Canadian and USA Olympic Hockey Teams.  The Gold Medal Game, won by Canada 3-2 in overtime, will go down as a classic.  So it should. 

Both teams played at a level that denies description.  If you didn’t have an opportunity to watch, find it online.  You don’t have to be a hockey fan to appreciate the teams’ efforts; being a sports fan will suffice.

Both teams filled their rosters with NHL players.  It was basically the USA-NHL vs the Canadian-NHL All-Star Game.  However, any resemblance to an All-Star game ends with that point. 

These teams played hard. 

They represented themselves and their countries well.  We can all be proud of all of them, Canadian and American alike.

My favorite moment of the Gold Medal Game:  Zach Parise of Team USA scored the goal to tie the game at 2-2 with 28 seconds left. 

He was skating from the right to the left in front of the net, scored, and never slowing down, skated to the left corner and self-checked himself into the boards. 

As a friend of ours said, “He got airborne. Baby!”  Even the old East German Judge had to give him a 9.9 on that move.

My hat’s off to Team USA at the XXI Olympiad.  The USA received 13 total medals at the Winter Games in Nagano, Japan in 1998.  At the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver, Canada, Team USA received 37 total medals.

THIRTY SEVEN!  

Team USA received 9 Gold, 15 Silver, and 13 Bronze.  This is a record for total medals in the Winter Olympics.

Team USA won medals in the following disciplines: Alpine Sking-Men, Alpine Sking-Women, Bobsled-Men, Bobsled-Women, Figure Skating-Men, Figure Skating-Couples, Freestyle Sking-Women, Freestyle Sking-Men, Ice Hockey-Men, Ice Hockey-Women, Snowboarding-Men, Snowboarding-Women, Short Track Speed Skating-Women, Short Track Speed Skating-Men, Speed Skating-Men, and the Nordic Combine.

The Men’s 4 Man Bobsled team USA-1, nicknamed Night Train, won the 1st Gold Medal for the USA since 1948.  Steven Holcomb, Steve Mesler, Justin Olsen and Curt Tomasevic dominated the Whistler Track that is considered the fastest in the world.

My Favorite Moment for Team USA in the XXI Winter Olympics:  The medals won by the Nordic Combine Team by the smallest of margins over the accomplishments of the rest of the Americans.  The USA had never won a medal in the Nordic Combine in the history of the Olympic Games. 

Bill Demong and Johnny Spillane went Gold-Silver in the Individual Large Hill, Johnny Spillane won Silver in the Individual Normal Hill, and after adding Bret Camerota and Todd Lodwick, the team won Silver in the Team Large Hill.  (The difference between the large hill and the normal hill isn’t the size of the hill climbed in the cross-country section of the combine, it’s the size of the ski jump used.  When they say Large Hill, it means LARGE JUMP)

Thank you, Team USA for your dedication to your sport. You have done your country proud.

My hat’s off to John Calipari.  Once again, Coach Calipari has lent his name and likeness to help benefit a worthy cause.  In this case, it’s the UK Symphony Orchestra and the School of Music’s Outreach Program. 

The 2010 edition of Makers Mark’s “Most Beloved” series will feature coach Cal’s signature and likeness.  They will be available on April 2 and priced in the high $40 range.  Thanks, Coach.

Posted by: Nate Fain | March 5, 2010

Bluegrass Stallions update

Here’s a quick update for the Bluegrass Stallions.

I’ll keep you posted on the Stallions’ playoff run!

Posted by: rubezing | March 1, 2010

Good Loss vs. Bad Win

One of the terms that invariably will get discussed after a favored team loses to an underdog is “Good Loss”.  It’s a term we have heard fans and the media use occasionally to put the loss in perspective to the entirety of the season.  “Hopefully, the team will use this loss as motivation to (insert whatever improvement the team needs here)”

Another term we have heard is “Bad Win” if a heavily favored team beats an underdog by a smaller margin than expected.  It’s a term used to describe the possibility that the favored team is overrated or the favored team didn’t perform to it’s capabilities.

I think we can all agree that momentum, a positive attitude, or confidence are all very important in sports.

Here’s a semi-equation I would like for you to ponder: (w=W)(l=L)

Mark Story in the Herald-Leader and several calls to the Sunday Morning Call-in show on 630 AM said the UK loss to UT on Saturday could fit into the good loss category.  This loss should point out to the Cats that starting slow, not playing good defense, rushing shots and falling behind early is not going to work in the post-season.  These are all points that Coach Calipari has pointed out throughout the season.

What do you think Coach Rupp would say if asked "Do you think this was a good loss tonight?"

You might ask a lot of fans in Texas about a good loss.  After starting the season 17-0 the Texas Longhorns lost to Kansas 71-62.  Did this put Texas back on track to the #1 ranking and a #1 seed in the post season?  No, Texas has gone 5-7 after that 17-0 start.  The exact opposite happened.

The Denver Broncos started the 2009 NFL season 6-0 before losing to Baltimore 30-7. Did this put the Broncos back on track to a successful season and a post season berth in the play-offs?  No, the Broncos went 2-8 the rest of the season and missed the play-offs.

When is it easier to make a four-foot putt to win?  After you have made four-in-a-row or after you have missed four-in-a-row?  When is it easier to make a free throw?  After you have swished the last one or after you bricked the last one?

Momentum and confidence is important in any individual.  It is also important in a team.  Winning can lead to a team attitude that we, as a group, are going to make the sacrifices necessary to win.  Sometimes losing leads to a team attitude that we, as a group, are going to find a way to lose.

Before the hate mail comes pouring in, I am not saying that the UK Cats are going to start losing every other game the rest of the year.  I am saying that the term “Good Loss” is an oxymoron, and a bad one at that.  The same holds true for “Bad Win”.

The semi-equation (w=W)(l=L) stands for win equals Winning and loss equals Losing.  Put more simply, a win can lead to more winning and a loss can lead to more losing.

As a player or a coach, losing a game you were supposed to win hurts just as bad as a game you were supposed to lose.  As a player or a coach, winning a game you were supposed to lose or win is “All Good”!

The NCAA Basketball season is coming to a close and “The Greatest Show On Earth” is about to begin.  This isn’t the NBA or MLB where you can lose late season games and then play teams the best 4 out of 7.  It is “One and Done”.  The momentum you carry into the post season is important.  Losing games in the late season because of mistakes your coach has fussed about throughout the season is “All Bad”.

So here’s the bottom line:  there is nothing “Good” about Losing and there is nothing “Bad” about Winning.  Ask any coach or player.

Posted by: Nate Fain | February 25, 2010

Hasheem Thabeet sent to D-League

It’s been reported by Marc Stein of ESPN that the Grizzlies will send Hasheem Thabeet down to the National Basketball Development League.

The 7’3″ center is now the highest draftee sent to the D-League. He was drafted at No.2 above these guys: Tyreke Evans, Johnny Flynn, Stephen Curry, DeMar Derozan and Brandon Jennings, just to name a few.

Nice pick, Grizz.

The Grizzlies acknowledged that Thabeet was a project when they selected him.

It took some sorting, but I finally found a photo of Thabeet playing in a Memphis jersey.

In other news: the Pope is Catholic.

I’ve been saying Thabeet was soft and overrated since he came to UConn.

Being over seven feet tall is a HUGE advantage in the college ranks. However, the NBA is a man’s game. The best ATHLETES in the world compete every night on the court. Yes, most of them are the tallest, but only the athletic ones are successful.

The game has changed. Seven footers have to have a jumper and be able to run up and down the floor now. Thabeet has nothing that sticks out besides his height.

For those still defending the Grizz for this pick, I ask why?! Why not draft a high-profile PG with your lotto pick?

Please, don’t give the Mike Conley Jr. excuse…

A couple of those guys are and will be better NBA players than Conley Jr. Also, who is the Grizz’s backup point guard right now? Marcus Williams???

Do I feel bad for the guy? No…he made millions of dollars for being taller than everyone else. How hard is it to average about 13 points and 10 rebounds in your junior year of college when you’re at least four or five inches taller than everyone else?

Congrats to Thabeet for getting his pay day.

This was a bonehead move to draft Thabeet. End of story.

Heads up, Roy Hibbert! You’re the next bust!

Posted by: Nate Fain | February 22, 2010

The 13th Man

At first glance, the box score of the Tri-City Suns vs. Bluegrass Stallions game looks pretty ordinary.

Five Stallions scored ten or more points, Lucasz Orbzut had five blocks and the Stallions rolled at home, 124-99.

However, if you’re an avid fan of the Lexington ABA team, or a basketball junkie in general, there is one line that should stick out. A player for the Stallions named Tony Chase played a little less than four minutes and managed to miss all seven shots he took. Sounds like a rough night.

Before you roll your eyes and scream, “Hey, I could do that! Maybe I should go try out for an ABA team!” you might want to know the background story of Chase, who had the number 13 on his jersey that night.

The Stallions have a promotion called “The 13th Man” for some home games.  Basically, this lucky winner gets to suit up for the game and sit on the bench for a home game. For this particular game, “The 13th Man” was Chase, who is the CEO of the Stallions.

With the Stallions up big in the last few minutes of this game, the unthinkable happened: Coach Kyle Macy put Chase in.

If you’ve ever been to a college game where the home team is rolling, there is nothing that delights the fans more than the scrubs getting some playing time. The crowd will go crazy, and beg them to shoot.

Contested jumper? SHOOT!

Off balance three-pointer? SHOOT!

Half-court heave? SHOOT!

This game was no different; every time Chase touched the ball, cheers rang throughout the gym, begging him to score.

When the final horn sounded, Chase was still scoreless, but he and the fans couldn’t complain too much because the win was their seventh in the last eight games.

Besides, Chase will turn 51 in July and has no professional basketball experience. Suddenly, this box score isn’t so ordinary.

Posted by: rubezing | February 19, 2010

Higher…Faster…Farther

The 2010 Winter Olympic Games at Vancouver, Canada began with the death of Nodar Kumaritashvili of the Republic of Georgia.

Kumaritashvili lost control of his sled during a practice run on the new track constructed for these Olympic Games.  Considered the fastest track ever built, Kumaritashvili lost control of his luge sled at the bottom of the hill at 90 mph.  Emergency personnel were able to get to him within seconds but weren’t able to revive him.  A tragic loss.

Kumaritashvili’s death was the fourth in the history of the Winter Games, the first since 1992.  All four deaths occurred during practice, none have happened during the competitions.

The Winter Olympics are inherently more dangerous than the Summer Olympics.  The competitions involve tremendous risks to the Competitors.

No other sports feature humans racing downhill on a sled or a pair of skis at 90 miles per hour with only a helmet on their head for protection.  No other sport has humans put on a helmet,  jump off ramps, and fly 110+ meters to land on two boards stuck to their feet.

You think falling at your local ice rink hurts?  Fall after your partner has thrown you 10 feet in the air and you have completed four twists.  Fall on the ice at 30-35 miles per hour, the speed some of the racers at this Olympics will reach.

Did you see the “Follow down the Hill” camera on the Moguls?  They were flying down the hill.  The snowboard races are fast and the half-pipe is unreal.  “Get more air” and “Catch more air” are common terms we will hear for two weeks.

These competitions require a willingness to walk the fine line between safety and injury.  Unfortunately, it’s only after a death occurs that we realize the line was crossed at too high a cost.

Humans are curious.

Humans have always wanted to know what is on the other side of the hill, what is on the bottom of the ocean, or what is on the surface of the moon.  If you tell us “It can’t be done” someone will step up to prove you wrong.  Humans will find a way to build a better mousetrap.  We can’t help it.

Humans want to know how things work.  We are driven to understand the world on which we exist.  How? Why? Where? When?  But sometimes the answer to these questions aren’t enough to satisfy us.

We don’t have wings?  We find a way to fly.  We don’t have gills?  We find a way to explore the oceans.  We can’t run faster than other animals?  We find a way to break the speed of sound or escape the pull of gravity.

Humans are competitive.

There is something within humans that compels us to go higher, faster, and farther than ever before.  But sometimes it’s not the competition among ourselves, it’s the competition within ourselves.

The desire to “Be the best we can be” has allowed the human race to produce Mozart, Sir Issac Newton, Plato, Marie Curie, and Einstein.  This desire has produced Michael Jordan, Muhammad Ali, Jack Nicklaus, Jim Brown, Babe Zaharias, and Jesse Owens.

Humans are mortal.

Sir Edmund Hillary’s response to the question, “Why did you climb Mt. Everest?” is infamous.  “Because it was there.”

What we have forgotten are the people who left the base of Mt. Everest to climb to the skies and never came back.  Death is a part of life.  Sports are a part of life.  And, at times, death is a part of sports.

There’s a reason the Olympics uses a torch as a symbol of the fire that burns within each human to become a champion; to go higher or faster or farther than is humanly possible.

This desire burned bright in the heart of Nodar Kumaritashvili.

Posted by: Nate Fain | February 15, 2010

Weekend wrap-up

What a great weekend of sports! Some great college basketball, the opening of the Winter Olympics, great golf and a Daytona 500 that was worth the wait.

The Winter Olympics

OK, we all knew that the opening ceremony wasn’t going to be as visually stimulating as Beijing, but it still put sports fans in the mood!

By the way, send Canada to America’s East Coast to grab some snow!

As for you moronic anti-poverty demonstrators: isn’t there a better way to express yourself than rioting and damaging objects? When you damage objects, you force people to spend money to replace it. The more money they spend to replace the stuff that you broke, the less cash they can send to those in need. Use your head…

I’m not sure who was in charge of the luge course that led to the fatal crash before the games opened, but I can’t help but partially blame all of those bragging that this track was the fastest in the world.

Even the man who lost his life knew this track might be a little much.

The track was too dangerous and should never have been made to be that fast. These athletes have nothing to protect them except for a helmet. This isn’t NASCAR where the athletes (yes, they’re athletes too) are protected by roll cages and carbon seats. Speaking of NASCAR…

Daytona 500

McMurray survived a late charge by Dale Jr. to win Sunday.

Yes, I watched it. Yes, it took forever. Yes, it was worth it!

I know a lot of you don’t like NASCAR or can’t come to realization that the drivers are athletes, but even if you don’t like the sport, everyone should make it a habit of at least watching the last 15 laps at Daytona.

Go ahead and talk about how these guys aren’t athletes. Just because you don’t like a sport doesn’t mean you should hate on it. I’m not a huge fan of soccer, but I respect the effort and time these guys put in every day to be the best at what they do. I also appreciate the coordination any sport takes, even bowling.

It’s unfair to compare every athlete to an NFL cornerback, wide receiver, running back or a small forward in the NBA. These guys are the best athletes in the world. There is no debating that.

However, you can’t discount a whole sport just because the performers aren’t as supreme athletes as the absolute best in the world. Baseball players aren’t athletes? You try hitting a 95 mph fastball 400+ feet. Can you throw a baseball three hundred feet on a line and make it bounce once to a catcher faster than a runner can sprint 90 feet? Didn’t think so…

When’s the last time you hit a 300+ yard drive down a fairway lined with thousands of fans, cameras and trees? Sure, you can crank one out every once in a while with the boys, but where’s the pressure there? Also, how often do you do it? No mulligans or “practice shots” on the PGA, my friend.

Look, New Circle Road is crazy. Imagine it three times the speed with cars shifting lanes more, and cars bumping you from all sides. Pretty crazy, right? Try doing it for 500 miles without crashing! Good luck…

So, no. You don’t have to be able to run a four minute mile to compete in some sports. You don’t even have to be able to bench press over 300 pounds to hit a 300 yard drive. Your vertical leap doesn’t matter when you’re driving a car or rolling a ball down a lane, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a ton of skill and effort involved.

I’m not asking people to love all sports. I’m asking them to at least respect the skill these athletes have and the work they put into being good. It sure is hard for me to take your opinion seriously when the most competitive games you’ve played in were during gym class or intramurals…

***Stepping off soap box***

Basketball (not just college!)

A few things caught my eye this weekend in the world of college basketball.

First, I don’t mean to toot my own horn…but I will! Pitt beats WVa in 3OTs! A few weeks ago I said that I wasn’t too high on WVa and I liked Pitt as a team that might not win their conference but could be on the rise.

Also, John Thompson III continually proves me right by losing to teams like Rutgers. His Hoyas are and have been one of the most highly-talented teams the past few years, but he has nothing to show for it. I’m calling you out, JT3…make me a believer!

A very good win for Louisville over Syracuse. The Cards have been underachieving all year and were looking for a signature win. I’m not too worried about the Orange. I still like them to at least make the Elite 8.

Bruce Pearl is the second-best coach in the SEC. Let the blasting begin! He’s moving in front of Billy Donovan, in my opinion. Billy D has titles, but that was then and this is now. If not for an amazing recruiting class, Billy would have never gotten those titles.

By the way, if he’s such a good coach and recruiter, then why has he seemed to have lost his touch the past three years?

Bruce Pearl has his depleted Vols playing like a top-25 team. Pearl may not be the best babysitter, but he has done an excellent job with the players he has left. A great win by the Cats thanks to John Wall and a great second half by Eric Bledsoe. If the Wildcat frontcourt doesn’t show up in Knoxville, much like they failed to do in Lexington, you can mark an “L” next to that game.

For those that weren’t at the game in Rupp, I’m proud to announce that Kentucky basketball is back. Rupp was rockin’! Also, how about 22,000 showing up for College Gameday? Unreal!

Dwayne Wade showed why he is one of the top free agents this offseason.

The NBA All-Star game did not disappoint. I was so relieved that they gave Dwayne Wade the MVP instead of Lebron James. James played well, but Wade’s numbers could not be argued with. I only wish Kobe Bryant and Chris Paul could have played!

This was one of the more competitive All-Star games I can remember. It was also filled with a lot of new stars.

Shaq, Yao, T-Mac, Allen Iverson Vincanity and Ray Allen were all missing from this year’s All-Star game. This seemed like a new generation of All-Stars.

My only gripe would be the dunk contest. DWade, King James, Dwight Howard and another player of your choice should be competing in this. I don’t understand why the stars don’t compete in this anymore!

I’m not buying the “what if I get injured?” excuse. If you were worried about getting injured, you wouldn’t be throwing alley-oops to yourself off the glass during the actual All-Star game…

Please, guys! PLEASE! Save the dunk contest.

It was an awesome weekend in sports! With the NBA trade deadline looming, it will be interesting to see who starts making moves!

Posted by: rubezing | February 12, 2010

Giddy Up and…Whoa…and The Super Bowl

Giddy-Up.  The New Orleans Saints win Super Bowl XLIV 31-17 over the Indianapolis Colts.  Congratulations to the Saints’ owners, front office, coaches and players on a championship year.

Even if you are a fan of a different NFL team, you have to feel good for the Saints “Who Dat” fans.  They are as loyal as any fan base in the country.  To endure 43 years of frustration and win the Super Bowl in year 44 should be respected by all football fans.  Congratulations.  Mardi Gras is going to be LARGE this year.

Whoa.  Congratulations to the Indianapolis Colts.  If memory serves, most of the football “experts” picked the Tennessee Titans to win the Colt’s divison this year.  Very few had the Colts in the Super Bowl. 

The Colts flirted with a perfect season and made it to the Super Bowl.  Not too shabby.  It will always hurt when your favorite team makes it this far and loses the last game.  The Colts had an outstanding year.

Drew Brees after his shoulder injury in the 2005 season. The Saints were one of only a few teams that believed Brees could recover.

Giddy-Up

Drew Brees.  32/39 passing, 288 passing yards, and 2 Touchdown passes.  After the first quarter, Brees went 29/32 with one dropped pass and one spike to kill the clock.  MVP?  How could anyone else win? 

Dink…Dink….Dink…Touchdown!  Brees played within himself and his offense.  He lead his team to a Super Bowl win.  He etched his name on the list of great quarterbacks who have played in the NFL Championship.  A most deserving MVP.

Whoa.  Peyton Manning.  On any other day, a 31/45 passing, 333 passing yards, and 1 TD performance would have been enough for the Colts to win.  The Tracy Porter interception?  If you look at the replay, there was nothing between Reggie Wayne and the endzone if Porter missed the INT.  HUGE PLAY!

I still believe that Peyton Manning is an Alien.  But even the aliens had a bad day when Will Smith showed up in the movie Independence Day.  At Super Bowl XLIV,  Tracy Porter was Peyton Manning’s Will Smith (the actor…not the Saints football player…confused yet?).

Giddy-Up.  Pierre Thomas.  9 carries for 30 yards.  6 receiptions for  55 yards and 1 touchdown.  These are great stats.  The stat I wish I had are the yards after contact on all of Thomas’ runs and receiptions.  It seemed that he either ran through or over tacklers the entire game. 

His hard play had to be motivating to the Saints offense.  His actions on the field set an example for his team and shouted, “We are not to be denied”.

Whoa.  Dwight Freeney.  If respect could be measured on a scale of 1 to 10, Freeney would top out at a 10+.  You cannot have any idea of the effort that he put into playing with that ankle injury unless you’ve had one yourself.  Not only play, but to be effective in the first half was remarkable.

If you disagree with this next statement, I will argue with you.  Dwight Freeney’s sack of Drew Brees in the Super Bowl wins the award for “Best One-Handed Sack Of All Time”.

Giddy-Up.  Unsung Heroes for the Saints.  The entire Special Teams.  Enough has been said about the onside kick to start the second half.  Couragous.  Game Changer.  All true.  Let’s look further into the stats.

Courtney Roby had 4 kick-off returns for 102 yards.  This allowed the Saints good field postion to start every drive.

Thomas Morstead had 2 punts for 88 yards, one downed inside the 20.

Garrett Hartley set a Super Bowl record when he made all 3 of his field goals from outside 40 yards.  Nine very big points.

Whoa.  Colt unsung hero.  Joseph Addai.  Addai had 13 carries for 77 yards and 1 touchdown, plus 7 receiptions for 58 yards in the Super Bowl.  Addai got banged up in the Jets game and wasn’t effective.  I can’t remember anyone talking about Addai in all the pre-game chatter and, I have to admit, I didn’t think he would play this well.

Joseph Addai was another Colt player who played well enough for the Colts to win before Will Smith (Tracy Porter) showed up.

Giddy-Up.  The Super Bowl Half-time Show.  I’m showing my age, but I like The Who.  I thought they did a great job of dusting off some 40 year old songs and reproducing them live.  You have to know some of their history to fully appreciate them. 

Peter Townsend is almost deaf, due to standing in front of those amps all these years.  Roger Daultry still plays a mean harmonica.  Only Townsend and Daultry are still alive from the orginial band.  That was Zak Starkey, Ringo Starr’s son, playing the drums.

Whoa.  The NFL needs to get over the “Wardrobe Malfunction” of several years ago and book younger artists for half-time.  By younger, I don’t mean years, I mean decades.  I’m positive we can get artists of today to take the “I’LL KEEP MY CLOTHES ON” pledge and to keep the lyrics clean enough for prime time.

The production has gotten too big for the time allowed.  Keep the stage small, we don’t need 5000 children on the field to sing along, let the artist sing 3 or 4 shorter songs, and start the second half before it’s been so long that no one can remember the half-time score.

Giddy-Up.  103.5 million Americans watched Super Bowl XLIV on TV.  This is the largest viewing of any scheduled TV Broadcast in history, passing the last episode of M*A*S*H by 500,000 people. 

 I would agree that the large snowstorm in the eastern seaboard might have helped the viewing numbers, but I think it has more to do with professional football’s popularity.

Whoa.  The NFL spent some valuable time this week on two important topics;  Who owns the trade mark on “Who Dat” and the new

At least someone will be paid. The owners just gave Goodell a contract extension this week.

 design for the Vince Lombardi Trophy.

Really?  Is it important to the NFL that people are printing WHO DAT on tee-shirts?   Is it important to the NFL that the Lombardi Trophy has a model of the host stadium incorporated into the trophy? (Funny how this comes up the year before the Super Bowl is to be played in Jerry Jones’ new Cowboy Stadium)

The NFL should spend every waking moment between now and the begining of next year putting together a new Labor Agreement with the players!  The NFL cannot….Cannot….CANNOT…. start next year with this still up-in-the-air.  

There is already talk of teams prepairing for a work stopage in 2011 by adjusting plans with their personel, both players and coaches.

Professional football has passed professional baseball as the national game.  The NFL would be well served if they locked the Commissioner, the Owners, and the Players Representatives into a room and not let them out until they hammer out an agreement this summer.  Waiting until the season starts, or worse, waiting for the season to end next year would be bad for the game.

The NFL will have a lot more problems than who used the term “Who Dat” on a shirt if the players strike in 2011.  It doesn’t matter if the stadium is on the Lombardi Trophy if there isn’t a Super Bowl.

Posted by: Nate Fain | February 7, 2010

Super Bowl just that for New Orleans!

Second-year player Tracy Porter (22), a Louisiana native, sealed the game with an interception for a touchdown in the fourth quarter.

After countless losing seasons, two stadiums, a massive hurricane, a $185 million renovation of their home stadium because of that hurricane, rumors of a possible franchise relocation and over four decades of existence, the New Orleans Saints have won the Super Bowl.

Who Dat Nation rejoiced after their team defeated another future hall-of-fame quarterback to claim the franchise’s first title. Miami, Fla. was the site of this year’s  Super Bowl, but the whole Gulf Coast may migrate north to New Orleans on Tuesday for the team’s celebratory parade.

The MVP? Drew Brees, of course.

Congrats to the Saints, Who Dat Nation, the Gulf Coast and the state of Louisiana! What a great game!

Posted by: Nate Fain | February 4, 2010

Lane Kiffin gets commitment from 7th-grader

And they thought Billy Gillispie was bad…

This kid is too young to commit to a college football team. Also, how big of a gamble is this by Lane Kiffin?

Actually, it’s not a gamble at all. I’m guessing if he keeps signing kids who are three years away from getting their driver’s license, that USC will get rid of him.

Either way, it’s stupid and I can’t help but feel for this kid. Another sad case of daddy wanting to live through his child.

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