Sunday, December 24, 2006

Illegitimate Record

This past Christmas Eve, Hawaii's quarterback Colt Brennan broke the single-season record for touchdowns thrown in a season with 58. Congratulations to Mr. Brennan, but saying he broke the record is an illegitimate statement.

The previous record holder was David Klinger of Houston. In 1990 Klinger threw for 54 touchdowns. Klinger did this in only 12 games as oppose to 14 by Brennan. Back in 2002, the NCAA started including bowl stats as a part of season stats. How is that legit? Changing a rule like that causes all records to be tarnished. Look at the stats, after only 12 games Brennan threw for only 51 touchdowns. That should be his final stat for TDs thrown for the 2006 season.

In 1988 Barry Sanders rushed for 2600 yards while playing for the Oklahoma State Cowboys. In his team's bowl game that year, Sanders rushed for another 200+ yards, yet those did not count onto his final stats. How is that fair when someone in the future rushes for 2700 yards and is considered to be the new record holder?

My thing is the NCAA's decision to make a rule change like they did in 2002 causes a tremendous echo for all college football eternity. Colt Brennan has the record...but he played 2 more games. Clearly not legit.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

One Man Show

The world of collegiate sports and professional sports is so different. Each one has its positives…and negatives. One particular issue deals with professional sports. This issue has both pros and cons. Though for the most part, I feel it is much more of a negative. I am talking about professional sport owners. For me, I do not agree with the whole “one guy owns the team” concept. Why you ask? The simple reason that an owner has the power to move his or her franchise if they wish to do so. That thought alone is enough to make me nauseous. Don’t believe me? Here’s a list of some infamous nomad owners who have owned or still own in the professional world of sports:

Robert Irsay: Bob was the owner of the Baltimore Colts whom he later moved to the city of Indianapolis. To make a long story short, Irsay snuck his Colts out of Baltimore late one night after negotiations with the city went sour. Bottom line: If Irsay were still alive, he wouldn’t last a day in Baltimore after the way he left it.

Bud Adams: Mr. Adams is currently the owner of the Tennessee Titans, but as we all know they are the former Houston Oilers. Adams wanted a new stadium (how many times have we heard this story), but Houston mayor Bob Lanier was not having it. Numerous efforts were made to stop the move, yet in the end Bud was able to move his team to Tennessee.

Howard Schultz: The Seattle SuperSonics have been in the city of Seattle since the 1960s. The franchise has been a successful NBA franchise for many years, especially in 1979 when Lenny Wilkens guided the Sonics to their only title. Regardless of the history Schultz did not seem to get the picture. Not many bright times occurred during his rein as the team missed the playoffs 3 out of the 5 years he was the owner. On July 18, 2006 Schultz’s ownership came to a halt when he officially sold the team to some Oklahoma City investors. The city of Seattle has less than 12 months to save their franchise.

Art Modell: If you think Irsay would have trouble in Baltimore today, than I can not imagine the difficulties Art Modell would have in Cleveland. Modell screwed over the football-crazed city of Cleveland in 1996 when, like Irsay, he secretly made plans to move the team to Baltimore after his demands for stadiums renovations were not agreed upon. Numerous times during his ownership Modell promised he would never move the team. Many believe this rambunctious act of moving the Browns is what has kept Art Modell from going into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Bill Bidwill: In 1988 Bidwill moved the Cardinals out to the city of Phoenix where the team has made the playoffs a pathetic one time. For many years Bill and his family have made poor management decisions. For a Cardinals’ fan settling for mediocrity was a seasonally thing to expect. As one may have noticed, hope has changed for the Cardinals. More ownership and control is now in the hands of Bill’s son, Michael. For those of you who do not know, Michael is responsible for the hiring of Dennis Green at head coach.

So there you have it: a group of men who have shown the true error in the professional owner. The ownership of professional teams should follow that of the Green Bay Packers. A committee of men owns the Packers. This means that no greedy, old businessman or woman can ever come in and have the idea of moving the Packers because he or she feels it is necessary. Professional teams are more than just a group of players. They represent a region, a culture, and a way of life. It is not is not American…

…You getting all this Tommy Benson?

Monday, December 18, 2006

Right Thinking, Wrong Actions

As you may have already heard, the NBA had another intense on court brawl. Now by all means it was nothing close to the Pistons/Pacers fiasco over two years ago, but this ruckus was surely something not to be overlooked.

The New York Knicks were playing the Denver Nuggets Saturday night. The Nuggets began amassing a very large lead, and quite frankly that's how things got out of hand. With a 19 point lead and 1:15 left in the game, Coach George Karl still had 4 of his 5 starters in the game.

George Karl has a strong friendship with Larry Brown, and as we all know things did not go too well between Brown and Isaiah Thomas last year. Many critics feel Karl was showing his anger with the situation in New York last year by running up the score against the Knicks.

JR Smith (Denver) was on a fast break and going up for a layup when Mardy Collins (New York) grabbed Smith by the neck. Collins aggressively flung Smith down to the ground. Immediately following the clothesline-like tackle, Smith jumped up into Collins face. Nate Robinson (New York) ran into the argument where he proceeded to pull Smith away. Carmelo Anthony (Denver) shoved Robinson off of Smith. Robinson and Smith then fell into the stands where the fight escalated to its greatest. As the incident started to die down, Anthony sucker punched Collins in the face. Jared Jefferies (New York) sprinted down court to breakup the altercation. He was quickly tackled by a Denver player.

Today, Commissioner David Stern formally announced the suspensions for Saturday's brawl. In all, the suspensions add up to 47 games. Anthony received the harshest penalty as he will be suspended for the next 15 games. Robinson and Smith each received 10 games, while Collins was given six and Jefferies four. A couple other individuals where given light suspensions due to having left their team's benches. Neither Coach Karl or Thomas where suspended or fined in anyway. Criticism is afloat as it has been speculated that Thomas told his team to give a hard foul to one of Denver's players. Previous to the incident, Thomas can be seen mouthing to Anthony not to go to the other end of the court.

First things first, I agree with the thinking Mardy Collins had, but I don't like how he went through with it. It doesn't matter what profession you are in, respect is always an important thing for people to take into account. Despite Coach Karl's recent comments that his team was not running up the score, I still feel that the Nuggets were disrespecting the Knicks in a huge way. Three players were scheduled to check into the game, but the brawl had broken out. This very well could mean that Karl was planning on taking out his starters had Collins never tackled Smith. Still, to wait until their was only 1:15 left in the game to take your starters out when your team was up by 19 is pretty convincing to a viewer, that as a coach running up the score was your objective.

Take this situation from New York's perspective. The season has been lousy so far and you are playing at home against a big opponent, the Denver Nuggets. The game got out of hand and another loss will be heading your way. You as a player are frustrated, your teammates are frustrated, and your coach is frustrated. You are down by 19 and your opponent does not seem to be letting up.

Having 4 starters still in the game with 65 seconds left AND being up by 19 points is showing tremendous disrespect to a whole franchise. Now for me, I think Thomas did say something to his teammates. His team was going to lose and his opponent was not even respecting the mercy rule. As a coach, Thomas informed his teammates on the classless act Denver was performing.

Collins's thinking was an act of pride, but his actions were too extreme. If you are going to commit a hard foul, commit a hard foul not a tackle. Collins put his arm around Smith's neck. That was too much physical contact for a big ruckus to be avoided. If Collins had gone up with Smith during the layup and done a blatantly obvious grab-and-pull of Smith's shooting arm, followed by an aggressive shoulder into him, that would have been better.


Unlike the neck tackle, that move does not come across as a symbol to your opponent as you saying, "Let's fight!" It comes across as you being a frustrated player. A hard foul is meant to be done in a kind of ''hidden'' way.

Overall, I agree Denver was disrespecting New York. I agree New York had to take a physical action, but I don't agree with how they went about it...

Monday, December 11, 2006

Big Time Programs Meet Big Time Reality

Alabama and Miami-Florida got a reality check last week when two of the hottest coaches in the NCAA turned down jobs to coach for them.
If five years ago I told you a coach would rather coach for the Rutgers than Miami-Florida and another coach would rather coach West Virginia than Alabama you would of said I was crazy.
As coach of West Virginia, Rich Rodriguez has helped his team win 21 out of their last 24 games. Greg Schiano of Rutgers on the other hand complied a 10-2 record for the Scarlet Knight, including the school's first win at home against a ranked team (Louisville).
The University of Alabama is once again abroad the coaching carousel. For the fourth time in six years a new head man needs to be brought in after Mike Shula was fired earlier this month. A record of 26-23 at Alabama won't cut it so suuurelly the hottest known coaches will be driving to Tuscaloosa just for an interview, right? Well, apparently UA athletic personnel thought that too, which explains there rather early indication that Rodriguez was in fact coming to coach the Crimson Tide. But he's not. He turned it down.
Same thing took place for Miami-Florida. After an awful season, The U was forced to fire Coach Larry Coker. So with the Miami-Florida job open, much like Bama, contestants eager to coach would just line up, right? Greg Schiano is the AP Coach of the Year and had the chance to go back to Miami, except this time he would be the head coach. Come on! Rutgers or Miami? Go to Miami where there are amazing athletes (and women) as well as a school with numerous national championship...or New Jersey. Home of Rutgers. Last national championship: 1869 against Princeton A&M. (Yes, I was wondering the same thing, but I don't think General Robert E. Lee was in attendance during that game.) Well Coach Schiano turned down the job offer, but more importantly he sent a bold statement to the college football world.
So what is this? WV instead of Bama, and Rutgers instead of Miami. I'll tell you what it means the landscape of college football's elite has drastically changed. I can only help but think that maybe in the year 2020 we may watch the television in awe as find out that someone actually turned down the West Virginia and Rutgers job.

...That'll be the day

Friday, December 08, 2006

BCS: Got It Right!

All I keep hearing is how Michigan got screwed, but I have to say I strongly disagree.

First thing, Ohio State beat Michigan. Yes it was a measely 3 but they still beat them. Even so the week after that loss to OSU, UM didn't move back one spot in the polls which I find very strange.

How is it fair to Ohio State to beat UM in the last game of the season (it was sort of like a playoff game) and find out well geez you have to play that same team again. It wouldn't be. OSU won the conference and so did Florida. UM didn't.

Even though I may be a bit biased when discussing in further detail the strength of the SEC, you still can not lie that in fact the SEC is a very strong conference.

Florida had to play 2 extra games. One against Florida State and one against Arkansas, all while UM sat at home watching television. Now FSU may have had a rough season but rivalry games are rivalry games so that game was nothing easy. Also, Arkansas was a 1 loss SEC team thanks to LSU the week before. By no means was Arkansas ''overrated.'' I understand the Big 10 doesn't have a championship game, but it's situations like this where that is in fact an advantage.

Here's an example with the scenario switched. In 2001, Tennessee was set to play Miami-Florida in the National Championship but they had to still play in the SEC Championship. Now if UT was in the Big 10's circumstances they would've been in the NC game. As it turns out LSU beat UT in the SEC Championship and ruined their dream season.

The bottom line is UM is not getting punished for not having a championship game, Florida is just getting a bonus for having played in one.

Michigan had a shot at Ohio State and lost. Why's it fair for them to get a second try while Florida hasn't gotten any?

Also keep in mind I still hate the Florida Gators, it's just that this is the right matchup.

Ohio State should be playing Florida.

BCS: Job well done.