Nigh almost a year ago in this revered space, counsel was dispensed to the esteemed Judge Henry E. Hudson concerning the much-anticipated sentencing due one Michael Vick. The esteemed fumbled.
No less than unanimous accord was given by all three of you who read the opinion, accompanied by such platitudes as, "Wow! You must have slept on top of the mountain to come up with that, J. Dave!"
Unfortunately for many, the Honorable Judge Hudson was not one of you three. Too bad. Hudson missed a golden chance to take such a high-profile case as Vick's and make a real difference by taking the criminal and using him to educate others prone to engage in such despicable social activities. Instead of just throwing Vick in the pokey and tossing the key to thunderous ovation from the likes of the PETA puckerheads, direct the formerly bigger-than-life star to visit schools, hold seminars, visit detention centers and the like - at his expense - it stated here, and tell everyone with ears how he got involved in his contemptible form of entertainment and what he would do differently now that he got caught and was subsequently hosed in ignominy. Hudson blew it.
Now it's Roger Goodell's turn. With Vick's guilty plea on state charges to dogfighting Tuesday in the Commonwealth of Virginia, Vick is set to enjoy a most-befuddling irony: He may become paroled early as a result of his admission.
It's about the only break he's gotten. Maybe.
Because Vick could shuck his state-issued jumpsuit by Mother's Day, the NFL czar known for his no-Pac Man stance on chicanery will weigh in with a decision that could make Vick's Memorial Day anything but memorable. Here's hoping Goodell takes this chance to make a difference - not just an example.
One blather mouth on sports radio this week called for another year's suspension, justifying his stance by saying that Vick has only been punished by the law, not the league. The peacock further elaborated that since it was such a high-profile case, Vick, in essence, needed to be punished more, so as to satisfy the intense scrutiny of the hordes, a.k.a. the disciples of New Age idiotology so dyslexic they spell 'GOD' "D-O-G." In other words, his comments only served to underscore what was the assertion here in my first dissertation on this matter: Vick's sentencing was more about furthering an agenda than it was in righting a wrong.
Whether Goodell suspends Vick another year, or for only the first play of the 2009 season is not the point. Either Vick is repentant by now, or he's not. And regardless of how long of a suspension - if any - Goodell metes, Vick will get his chance to play again. But if Vick can be mandated into working to help educate and thus, possibly eradicate such a loathsome deed as his, rather than forced to only endure more punishment, then there's a much better chance of wiping out the barbaric leisure that dog fighting most certainly is.
That's the point.
The question is whether Goodell will rely on his own wisdom, whether he will succumb to the pressure of those with the agenda, or whether he will stamp a legacy on his tenure as NFL Commissioner by employing an understanding that will make a real difference.
May Goodell have the wisdom of Solomon on this matter, and show mercy on Vick in so doing, should Goodell determine that the former star has some semblance of a contrite heart. Because if he does, Vick's been punished enough. After all, he's still got a life sentence to serve.
Friday, November 28, 2008
Nigh almost a year ago in this revered space, counsel was dispensed to the esteemed Judge Henry E. Hudson concerning the much-anticipated sentencing due one Michael Vick. The esteemed fumbled.
Thursday, November 27, 2008
Many women have the same amount of body volume and size when it comes to physical attributes. The main factor though regarding women is that they lack the physical strength of a man. This eliminates women playing football and most of the women from playing basketball. Football is an extremely physical sport and it would be extremely tough to match the physical level of play. Basketball is also a very physical sport. That said, there are a few WNBA players who would have NBA GM's salivating for their athletic services.
Now baseball might be a different story, if only because there are a number of successful major league players that do not have large amounts of strength. And there is less involved as far as trying to match athleticism face to face as in the other sports. A few skills that are involved in being a professional baseball player are timing, and coordination. Women, though lacking strength, have no problem matching timing and coordination.
This represents another question. Are professional softball players good enough to play in MLB? The general consensus would be no. But after further looking into it, some of the pitches in softball are equivilant to a fastball in the major leagues. Many of the softball athletes in women's softball also have equal strength to some of the major league players.
So this leaves the question, can women hit a smaller ball? There really is no way to know but coordination tests prove that they do not lack when it comes to coordination compared to men and therefore it would be extremely interesting if women were to get a chance to play against men in professional baseball. The chance of women competing in basketball and football may be impossible judging by the facts we know, but baseball is up in the air. Also, women have proven that they can compete with men in soccer, as there are co-ed semi professional leagues already and the women do more than hold there own. But, I digress, you have been given the facts and you have been given questions.
Maybe someday a league will be created to answer these questions. It would bring alot of attention and would have a huge fan base due to the fact that people always ask the question. Can women compete with men in professional sports? For now we will have to wait and see, chances are that will never happen but if it does, you've solved the million dollar question.
This has not only angered Notre Dame fans but has landed him on the hot seat. Sure, the Notre Dame athletic director says "Weis' job is not at risk," but all athletic directors say that. Then at the end of the year the coach is let go. Weis has done a great job bringing in the top recruits in the nation, but has failed to bring them together to win. t
Currently, all Weis is doing is recruiting a high number of future NFL prospects. He has all the best recruits and has for the last couple years but that has resulted in an 8-13 record over the last two years. Not exactly a great record considering his recruiting classes are ranked top five in the nation the last two years. Weis is putting stars on the field but not guys that win.
Weis is coaching in college like he did in the NFL, and he's learning that in college there is more to winning than just playing all the great athletes. In college sports we watch some of the top talent sit the bench every year due to attitude problems. Weis has felt a connection to all his top recruits and has let those relationships affect the way he coaches.
Weis could be one upset away from securing his job as Notre Dame's head coach for at least a couple more years and keep the fans quiet. On the other hand if Weis gets upset, yet again, the loyal Notre Dame fans are going to call for his head. Weis is the face of the team, and needs to stand up and take responsibility and do a better job explaining what is going on. He's being paid millions to try and salvage a .500 record year after year.
His top recruits can't perform as a group and he is starting to melt under the media pressure. He has recently shown that the media is getting to him and that is the number one no-no when it comes to trying to keep your job as a head coach. Weis has been backed into a corner and doesn't know what to do, it's all up to the athletic director now, but it definately shouldn't come as a surprise when he gets the axe.
Maybe the top recruits he signed will be able to help him, someday, when he's forced out of college and back in the NFL.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
We all look forward to Thanksgiving feast every fall. It is a good time to get together with friends and family over a delicious meal and engage in entertaining conversation and laughs. I sincerely believe spirits are high not just because of the day but the anticipation of having the Friday off from work and school. So how does one spend the day after Thanksgiving? Well I have come up with a list of seven common activities people choose on this Friday after turkey day.
1. Shop. The day has been known as Black Friday. Many department stores will open early in the morning and the masses will flood to the retailers with hopes of getting the best deal of the century. Personally, I do not want any part of this. I prefer the click shopping in my pajamas. Not necessarily such a bad deal when many online merchants offer free shipping with purchases over a specified minimum limit. Still, the best deals are for those will to brave the cold early hours spent waiting in line for the doors to open.
2. Exercise. There seems to be a degree of guilt associated with the gluttony of Thanksgiving. Many people see the day as that one day of the year where they can hit the table hard and get seconds and not worry about the consequences. Still there are those out there that can't wait until Friday morning to come so they can run, jog, and walk off the pumpkin pie.
3. Football. Thanksgiving Thursday always offers up some football to watch while waiting for the meal to be done. Well, the Friday after thanksgiving always seems to televise good college games for viewing. This is also a great opportunity to make a double Decker turkey sandwich while sitting in your favorite chair in front of the television.
4. Kickoff the December Holidays. After the Thanksgiving Day is complete, many folks will then breakout their holiday décor and use the day to inaugurate the Christmas mood. For many this means putting up the tree, nativity, and exterior lights. I usually make this my Saturday after Thanksgiving project.
5. Bake. Who would think people would want to work in the kitchen the day after Thanksgiving? Well many people use this day to kick off their holiday baking of cookies, breads, and other fine treats. This also seems to put everyone in the cheerful mood especially when baking to the sounds of holiday music.
6. Golf. This is considered a bonus day of golf if the weather is accommodating.
7. Do absolutely nothing. Start the day in your pajamas and remain in you pajamas. This is a great way to decompress. Play games, watch television, or read a book. Rent a movie that you have been putting off due to being too busy. This is a great day to do absolutely nothing without feeling the guilt.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
You knew they were getting alot, but exactly how much? Here is a review of the top paid NBA players and information on each. Is the top paid player Stephon Marbury? And what do we think of the money he's getting? I know you have your opinions on this, here are the numbers and review of the top 10 salaries for NBA players for the 2008-2009 NBA season.
10. Ray Allen- $18,388,430
Ray Allen of the Boston Celtics is one of the greatest shooters you will ever see. Involved in a blockbuster trade before last season, he was an essential part of the "big 3" and helped lead the Celtics to the NBA title last year. Allen has been consistent throughout his career and is possibly the best three point shooter ever to play the game. Many wondered if he would be able to take a lesser role on a team with Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce, needless to say he has responded nicely. Ray Allen has a great work ethic and never has any off the court problems, he is definately worth the price of admission.
9. Tracy Mcgrady- $20,370,437
Mcgrady plays for the Houston Rockets, and is the ninth highest paid player in the NBA this season. Mcgrady is the leader and go-to player for the Rockets and performs well, when he is on the court. Mcgrady has been hampered by injuries the last few seasons and has never led his team out of the first round of the playoffs. All things considered, the western conference is a tough conference and you can't necessarily blame him. He finally has the team to get out of the first round this year after the team acquired Ron Artest, to go along with Mcgrady and Yao Ming. So the jury is still out on whether or not he is deserving of his salary, regardless of injuries though, Mcgrady is always a thrill to watch.
8. Tim Duncan- $20,598,704
So you thought the San Antonio Spurs were a small market team and none of their players make to much money, well, Duncan receives the eighth highest salary in the league and is deserving. Since Duncan came into the league, all he has done is win 4 NBA titles and win many awards. He dominates the post and is one of the toughest players in the league to guard with his patented bank shot. Is Duncan worth his money? If anything, he deserves more.
6T. Allen Iverson and Stephon Marbury- $20,840,625
In seventh place, we have a tie, with two players both making exactly $20,840,625. I know you all can't wait to hear what is to be said about Marbury so we'll cover Allen Iverson first. Allen Iverson, also known as A.I., of the Detroit Pistons has the 3rd highest scoring average in NBA history, but has yet to win a title. If you have ever seen him play, you know this guy is worth it. With his same quote before every game, "I play every game like it's my last", how could you not like the guy? He is fundamentally sound and works hard on offense and defense. You may also know him for his famous video about practice where he says practice over 20 times. If you haven't seen it you should definately check it out. To sum up A.I. he is the most explosive and quick player to ever play the game. Of course he is worth the money.
Stephon Marbury, or "Starbury" as people call him, is currently sitting the bench, no, he's inactive for the New York Knicks. If you are unaware of what inactive means, it means you are not as good as the other 15 players on the roster. Before turning into everyone else that is stunned by the situation, let's look at his game. He is still a solid player, though very clear that he is more about the money, than the game. Marbury has refused to take less money for the knicks to buy out his contract, and the coach doesn't like him, so he's stuck. Marbury has also never been a winner anywhere he has played. To correct his image he must go to a good team and win a championship. The verdict: You can't blame Marbury for being overpaid, blame the Knicks and their tumultuous organization. Hey, if someone was going to offer you almost $21 million a year to sit on the bench, would you take it?
5. Shaquille O'Neal- $21,000,000
Shaq, currently of the Phoenix Suns is one of the most dominating players of all-time. He has shown his size and strength throughout his career and is one of the most vocal players in the game today. Shaq announced that he is retiring after the season. He will be sorely missed. Shaq is a four time NBA champion 3 with the L.A. Lakers and one with the Miami Heat, and has always been a center of attention. He will always be remembered as one of the greatest centers of all-time. Shaq and his boyant personality definately deserve his salary.
4. Kobe Bryant- $21,262,500
Kobe is Shaq's former running mate and currently plays for the Los Angeles Lakers. Kobe is a 3 time NBA champion and is often compared to Michael Jordan as one of the best overall players in the history of the game. Kobe consistently scores night after night and is a complete player. He led the Lakers to the NBA finals last year and is thrilling to watch. So do you think he is worth the money? Let's answer that question with another. Was Michael Jordan worth the money?
2T Jermaine O'Neal and Jason Kidd- $21,372,000
There is another tie for 3rd between Jermaine O'Neal and Jason Kidd. Both are playing for new teams. Jason Kidd for the Dallas Mavericks, and Jermaine O'Neal for the Toronto Raptors. Jermaine O'Neal came to the NBA straight out of high school and is a dominant post player. The only knock on Jermaine is that he really hasn't taken any of his teams very far. Due to this Jermaine unfortunately does not deserve his huge salary.
Jason Kidd is one of the great point guards the NBA has seen, but struggles to shoot the ball. He is one of the highest scoring triple-doubles though in league history due to his great rebounding and passing abilities. Jason improves every team he has been on but is slowing down. He deserves his salary soly because of the numbers he puts up.
1. Kevin Garnett- $24,751,934
Kevin Garnett, or frequently referred to as KG, is a dominant and quick power forward that puts up points, rebounds, and blocks consistently. A dominating player in the post that has won an NBA title and as previously stated, plays for the Boston Celtics. He was also drafted straight out of high school and is an extremely amazing talent. He is making over three million more than the second highest paid player, and therefore is not worth the money. Almost $25 million for one season? And three million more than all the others? Needs to win one more championship to deserve the gold he's getting.
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We have all been inundated with Brett Favre stories and stats. Let's face it: according to the media, Favre is the Miracle Man at the ripe old age of 39. But is he? Since Favre has come back to play and prove that his experience is still a valuable asset, other teams have come to rely on QBs of similar "advanced" age. Is this the NFL's newest trend?
The Arizona Cardinals have the next most famous elder statesmen at the helm. At 37, Kurt Warner is once again the number one QB taking over for the highly touted young USC gun, Matt Leinert. While Warner has said in the past he knew he had more yet to offer, he wasn't sure if a number one QB spot was in the cards. For Arizona, the switch to Warner has proved to be more than a blessing. Warner has not only led his team to the top spot in their Division, but the top spot with a considerable cushion.
We, at PossessionPoints.com, would be remiss if we overlooked two more seasoned QBs who have taken charge of most likely playoff - bound teams. First, is Kerry Collins who is 36 this season and second is Jeff Garcia of the Bucs who is 38. These two moved from backup status to starter after injuries and problems with younger QBs. Collins took over for Vince Young, supposedly the future of the Titans and has yet to lose while Garcia took over for Brian Griese, who while not exactly a young gun, was nonetheless considered the Bucs' starter. One has to wonder if Garcia would have been the Dolphins' QB had the Bucs succeeded in getting Favre instead of the Jets.
On the other side of the argument is the success that two rookies are having in the League this year. Conventional wisdom in the NFL has always been that young QBs need to sit and learn in order to become a successful leader of the team. If a team was forced to use a rookie QB as a starter, that team usually resigned itself to a losing or mediocre season. This year, two NFL teams threw caution to the wind and started Joe Flacco in Baltimore and Matt Ryan in Atlanta. While NFL experts viewed Ryan as the future of the beleaguered Falcons who thought they had nothing to lose by starting this season, Flacco was seen as a probable back-up behind both Kyle Boller and second-year man, Troy Smith. Injuries to Boller and a weird unrelenting viral infection to Smith, forced Flacco into the limelight. Both rookies have led their teams into some degree of surprising success in that both teams have a shot at the playoffs.
So, which trend might NFL teams follow after this season? If we take the hint from Minnesota, we might say that experience counts more. When Tavaris Jackson began to struggle this season, The Vikings had a choice in his replacement. On their roster, they had an "old" 37-year-old journeyman QB in Gus Frerotte and a rookie from USC, the football powerhouse, John David Booty. In a year when Quarterbacks from Boston College and University of Delaware are making their marks, you would think a rookie from USC would be ushered in easily. But the Vikings chose experience and have had great success.
When this season is done, and the Lombardi Trophy is handed out, it might well be which QB is holding the trophy that determines which direction teams will go next season. If a Manning is holding that trophy - well, all bets are off!
Monday, November 24, 2008
College Football Rivalries: A few that have impact on this season's BCS outcome... and a few that don't.
The NCAA college football season wouldn't be complete without the bitter rivalries that usually play out towards the end of the seasons. Many of these games have large implications on the final BCS rankings which thrusts them into the national spotlight. Inevitably, there are also a few that have never mattered for much more then bragging rights between a state school and a university. Many of these rivalries date back to the late 1800's or early 1900's - so you can bet these games have meanings to both teams involved that goes far beyond national title hopes.
Here is a break down of a few of this years rivalry games (some have already played out), and the history behind them.
Red River Rivalry - Oklahoma and Texas
· Rivalry inception - 1900
· Trophy - The Golden Hat
· All-time record - Oklahoma 40, Texas 58, Ties 5
· This year's game was played on October 11th with then #1 Oklahoma losing to then #5 Texas 45-35 in Dallas.
· Along with the Golden Hat, a Red River Rivalry trophy has been exchanged between the two student governments, the governors of Texas and Oklahoma also exchange the Governor's trophy while often laying a side bet of a side of beef (donated to charity) on the game.
Little Brown Jug - Minnesota and Michigan
· Rivalry inception - 1892
· Trophy - The Little Brown Jug
· All-time record - Michigan 66, Minnesota 22, Ties 3
· This year's game was played on October 8th with Michigan defeating Minnesota 29-6 in Minneapolis.
· The Little Brown Jug is the oldest continuous trophy and rivalry game in college football. Not without controversy though, as some contend the Arizona vs. Arizona St. Territorial Cup game has it beat.
Deep South's Oldest Rivalry - Auburn and Georgia
· Rivalry inception - 1892 (1898)
· Trophy - none
· All-time record - Auburn 53, Georgia 51, Ties 8
· This year's game was played on November 15th with Georgia edging Auburn 17-13 in Auburn.
· Though the first game was played in 1892, it wasn't until six years later in 1898 that this rivalry became a constant. This rivalry boasts the most even W/L record with this many (112) games played.
Bedlam Series - Oklahoma and Oklahoma State
· Rivalry inception - 1904
· Trophy - The Bedlam Bell
· All-time record - Oklahoma 78, Oklahoma State 16, Ties 7.
· This year's game will be played on November 29th and has massive BCS implications.
· The first game in this rivalry may have been a precursor to the lopsidedness of this rivalry - Oklahoma won that game 75-0. Also of note in this rivalry was that the 1972 results (OU, win) were thrown out due to recruiting violations by Oklahoma.
Civil War - Oregon and Oregon State
· Rivalry inception - 1894
· Trophy - Platypus Trophy
· All-time record - Oregon 55, Oregon State 46, Ties 10.
· This year's game will be played on November 29th and has some implications in the BCS standings. Not for Oregon or Oregon State, but rather for the team's that have lost to Oregon State (USC) - or beat them (Penn St.).
· If Oregon State wins, they will most likely represent the PAC-10 in the Rose Bowl, where they would likely face Penn State - in hopes of extracting revenge for any early season loss to the Nittnay Lions in Happy Valley.
Apple Cup - Washington and Washington State
· Rivalry inception - 1901
· Trophy - Apple Cup
· All-time record - Washington 64, Washington State, 30, Ties 6.
· This year's game will be played on November 22nd and finds both teams doing as bad as either school has ever done.
· At 0-10, the University of Washington may be facing its last chance to get a victory in the 2008 season, as they travel to California in their final week. For Washington State, simply knowing they could send the Huskies to a winless season should do more then enough to add to the excitement of this bitter rivalry.
Again, this is just a sampling of the many college football rivalries you can find throughout the season. Without a doubt many are more meaningful then others - but don't let that take away from the pride and excitement that can be found throughout any campus during the week of an upcoming rivalry game.
The Heisman Trophy is meant to go to the "Most Outstanding Player," and with that in mind, here are my picks for who should be the top contenders:
2008 Heisman Trophy Contenders and Pick
1. Michael Crabtree, Texas Tech-
18 touchdowns, over 1,000 yards yet again, and that Heisman-caliber highlight catch to win the Texas game. Sounds like a Heisman Trophy resume to me, doesn't it? Plus, from a pure talent standpoint, he beats his teammate Graham Harrell.
2. Percy Harvin, Florida-
Tim Tebow gets all the love, but if I'm a defensive coordinator, I'm worried about Harvin. He takes handoffs and runs untouched away from defenders. He averages an unreal 9.2 yards per carry. He also has 14 total TD's and his speed and talent opens up the field for his teammates. He is the most outstanding player on one of the nation's best teams.
3. Graham Harrell, Texas Tech-
Great QB, great year. Amazing stats as well, but he doesn't jump out at you like Crabtree does. Jerry Rice was probably a better overall player and a more outstanding player than Joe Montana, too. But Harrell is a worthy Heisman winner if Texas Tech keeps winning.
4. Colt McCoy-
He has become a better runner and passer this year for a Texas team that still might sneak into the BCS Title game and he's a worthy Heisman candidate for sure.
5. Tim Tebow, Florida-
He's a great QB who can throw the ball better than people give him credit for, and he also has a unique style with his power running. This is only his second year as a starting QB and he is dominating for the Gators.
Sunday, November 23, 2008
For the true sports aficionado there is nothing short of actually being there which will do. However, history is happening in sports all the time and it is tough to be able to say you were in two places at once; let alone to know when some milestone hit or record setting touchdown or come from behind win will occur. Better perhaps to just watch the highlight reels.
Not so for many fans; there are a great deal who just like to get up close and personal with their hero's scenes, memorabilia, uniforms, and more. This is where the Sports Museum of America comes into play. The New York branch of the Sports Museum of America does fans of many sports one better as they have partnered with different organizations, groups, halls of fame, and leagues to bring their guests the best scenes from a lot of different sports.
Another unique facet to this museum is that it is the permanent home to the Heisman Trophy; an award doled out annually to the best player in college football. A number of other exclusive partners include the American Museum of Fly Fishing, College Football Hall of Fame, Companions in Courage Foundation, Figure Skating Hall of Fame and Museum, Herreshoff Marine Museum/America's Cup Hall of Fame, Hockey Hall of Fame, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, International Boxing Hall of Fame, International Bowling Museum & Hall of Fame, International Swimming Hall of Fame, International Tennis Hall of Fame, Jackie Robinson Foundation, Lacrosse Museum and National Hall of Fame, Museum of Yachting, NCAA Hall of Champions, Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, NASCAR, National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame, National Softball Hall of Fame, The National Track & Field Hall of Fame, National Wrestling Hall of Fame, Pro Football Hall of Fame, Special Olympics, US Bicycling Hall of Fame, United States Golf Association, United States Tennis Association, US Lacrosse, United States Olympic Committee, US Soccer, USA Basketball, USA Hockey, USA Football, USA Rugby, USA Softball & Armature Softball Association, USA Swimming, USA Track & Field, USA Volleyball, USA Wresting, Volleyball Hall of Fame, Women's Sports Foundation, and the World Golf Hall of Fame.
Saturday, November 22, 2008
NASCAR classifies its racetracks into two categories, short tracks and super speedways. Short tracks are anything under a mile; while the super speedways are over a mile. There are two tracks in the super speedway category that exceed the two mile length - Dayton International Speedway is 2.5 miles long while Talladega Speedway is 2.66 miles in length. These tracks also have a banking at the turns in excess of 30 degrees.
Because of the speeds that can be achieved at these tracks - in excess of 200 miles an hour - the engines are restricted in the amount of horsepower they produce which slows the cars down around eight or 10 miles an hour. However, when the cars get into a single line causing a draft the speed of these cars increases and can again reach the 200 miles an hour mark. As a child I lived five miles from the track in Daytona. This was before the speeds reached today and the restricor plates and we could hear the cars going around the track even with the windows closed.
But because of the restrictor plate Daytona and Talladega are not the fastest of the tracks in NASCAR racing. That distinction belongs to Atlanta Motor Speedway where the cars can easily reach the 200 mile an hour mark without the help of drafting.
Unlike the open wheeled cars that routinely exceed two hundred miles per hour, NASCAR tries to keep the cars under that mark as a safety issue. Even so when there is a crash at the larger tracks it can trap a large number of cars in the field causing what is known as THE Big One. The cars are usually a mess after such an event but fortunately the drivers nearly always walk away from the fray.
The Daytona 500 - also known as the Great American race - there is nothing else like it in all of stock car racing. While most race events take place over a two or three day period (practice, qualifying, and racing), the race events at Daytona the events that opens the NASCAR racing season goes on for two weeks - known as Speed weeks.
In 2008 NASCAR will celebrate 50 years of racing at Daytona on the track. The races first started on the beach itself. In 1959 the race moved to eight miles inshore to the tracks present location.
The racing season opens at Daytona with the Bud Shootout, qualifying, and the two qualifying races in the two weeks before the big race which culminates in the form of the Dayton 500.
Residents of Daytona, who are used to strange faces and filled hotel rooms, know when the racing season begins not by looking at the calendar or the feel of the cooler temperatures in the air but by the sound of racing engines roaring through the air when the 24 hours of Daytona kicks things off about the second weekend of the month of February with a road style race that lasts for an entire 24 hours period. At the conclusion of the 24 hour race the NASCAR community moves in and Speed weeks officially begins and the race is on for 36 races until a new champion is crowned in December. As a child I can remember hearing the cars as they raced around the track inside the house five miles away.
1. Half Life 2
3. Homeworld Cataclysm
4. Homeworld 2
5. Space Hulk
7. Pravateer 2 The Darkening
10. Elder Scrolls Oblivion
11. Thief The Dark Project
12. Tie Fighter
13. World Of WarCraft Reign Of Chaos
14. Mass Effect
15. Global Civilizations II Twilight of the Arnor
17. FreeSpace 2
18. NHL East side Hockey Manager
20. Assassins Creed
These are all really good games. Some old and some new but all great to play. There are of course others but these will do for now. If you have not played these games then do yourself a favor and check them out. You will have a blast if you do. Also remember that just because councils are the fade now does not mean that the PC is done for. The PC has a line of unique games that I have not seen any council even get close to. The only council that ever did was the 3DO but thanks to stupid people no one purchased one. It carried games like Space Hulk Vengeance of the Blood Angels and Syndicate. Two very cool games. It also had others but the best one was Star Control II. This is an old game but one of the best. Find it and download it for yourself. You will love it.
Friday, November 21, 2008
Ht: 6' 0" Wt: 175 Age: 23
Born: 5/6/1985, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
College: Wake Forest
Drafted: 2005 - Rd 1 (4th overall)
by the New Orleans Hornets
His team.I'm just saying at this current time and the future if Chris Paul gets hurt they might as well go home. Sure they have Tyson Chandler and a few other alright players but who can really get it done other then him.
To many to name. The kid is a beast. He is going out every night just breaking record after record. You got to like this guy. I just hope he does not let it go to his head like Kobe and some other so called super stars.On 11/12/08 he had a season-high 30 points and 13 assists to extend his record streak of 20-point, 10-assist games to seven. He is just amazing all the way around. Whats so funny is that he looks so small out there but he plays big. They keep saying he plays like Isiah Thomas, thats so wrong Isiah Thomas was a dirty player that has now grown into a dirty man and coach. Well fired coach. CP3 is nothing like him and lets pray he never becomes like him. Chris Paul seems to be a well brought up young man that I think has a great future in the NBA and beyound. Lets just pray he stays healthy and out of trouble.
The NBA schedule for the 2008-2009 season has been released, and the primary thing that should be noticed, is that there will be 5 games played on December 25th this year. In a stark change from past years, the National Basketball Association is pulling out all the stops with a full line-up of games to celebrate Christmas.
Immediately brought to mind, is that the holiday has been for years considered a football day, where you could normally see a Detroit Lions or Dallas Cowboys game while the Turkey was being cooked. It is pretty obvious that the NBA wants to do battle in both the ratings and with sports fans as they have loaded up the Christmas Day line-up with a veritable smorgasbord of offerings. A day that was once dominated by football watching could soon become a split of the ratings bonanza on a day where typical programming is relegated to either only sporting events, news, re-hashed Christmas specials, or It's a Wonderful Life.
According to the NBA schedule, the games will get started at 12pm Eastern (9am Pacific) with the Orlando Magic hosting the New Orleans Hornets. Olympic team members Dwight Howard (ORL) and Chris Paul (NO) get to face off in what will be a great match-up. ABC will be hosting a double-header over on their network, starting with the San Antonio Spurs playing the Phoenix Suns. This will pit Tim Duncan (SA) against Shaquille O'Neal and Steve Nash (PHO) in what will probably be a playoff preview. That game is followed on ABC by a re-match of this years NBA Finals, with the Boston Celtics traveling to Los Angeles to play the Lakers.
Finally, over on TNT, Gilbert Arenas and the Washington Wizards will travel to play the Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James, followed by the Dallas Mavericks traveling to Portland to play the Trailblazers. Certainly this is going to be a day packed with games, and with many channels to choose from, it is going to be a big day in sports. Not only that, but the schedule makers were nice enough to give fans the superstar treatment, with many of the best players in the game all playing on the same day. This is a good move by the NBA, and maybe a sign that the league really wants to head in the right direction after some off-season hiccups. One thing is for sure though, this Christmas we are all getting basketball as a present.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
season and rightly so. It is one of the two best professional sports
drafts of the four major professional American sports. Like the NBA,
NFL draftees are well known from their collegiate careers and often
make an immediate impact at the professional level for the teams that
draft them. Similarly, both sports drafts are large events televised
by ESPN. However, the methodology of the top two professional sports
While the NFL's Atlanta Falcons, Oakland Raiders and Kansas City
Chiefs performed a coin toss to determine the order of the 2008 NFL
Draft's third, fourth and fifth choices, the NBA consistently
undergoes a lottery system each year there is an NBA draft. In the
National Football League, tiebreakers usually differentiate a lot of
teams in the draft order, but the National Basketball Association
always gambles to determine the number one pick in the NBA draft.
Granted, the NBA draft lottery is weighted in accordance with teams'
records, but such weighting was not always the case. When the lottery
was established in 1985, the seven worst teams in the league were all
given an equal opportunity to win the first pick in the draft.
However, when the worst team in the league, the Golden State Warriors,
was awarded the seventh pick, changes to the draft lottery ensued.
Weighting of lottery pick selections were not instituted until 1990
and in 1994 were tweaked to the specifications in place for the 2008
As of 1994, the worst team in the league has a 25% chance of winning
the first overall pick in the NBA draft lottery. Subsequently worse
teams have decreasing percentage chances of garnering the first
overall pick in the NBA draft including 19.9% (2nd), 15.6% (3rd),
11.9% (4th), 8.8% (5th) and so on, down to a 0.5% chance of garnering
the first selection for the 14th worst team, according to record.
For as much flak as the NBA may receive for a lottery to determine the
order of picks, there has, historically, also been concern regarding
the amount of weighting. Some people think the exaggerated weighting
encourages poor teams to throw games toward the end of the season - in
order to improve their chances of acquiring a higher draft pick.
However, the NHL utilizes a similar weighting methodology for the
National Hockey League draft lottery. Like the NBA, the NHL's worst
team has a 25% chance of acquiring the number one overall draft
selection of the NHL draft. In contrast to the NFL and NBA, which have
a relatively narrow funnel of sources for their players, the NHL
drafts players from the Ontario Hockey League, Western Hockey League,
Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, United States High Schools and
Colleges, as well as internationally.
While Major League Baseball has a narrow funnel of sources for the
prospects for its' draft - high school, college and amateur baseball
teams - MLB draft picks do not typically progress straight to the
major leagues, unlike football, basketball and hockey. In addition to
most MLB draft picks entering the minor leagues before advancing to
the major leagues, many draft picks never step onto a Major League
Baseball field, as a player.
The process MLB draft picks must endure to make it to the professional
level undoubtedly hurts the importance, validity and popularity of the
Major League Baseball draft. Of course, another hindrance to the
importance of the MLB draft is the fact that it is held during the
baseball season - in early June. Professional football, hockey and
basketball hold drafts in preparation for upcoming seasons (or at
least after the prior season) giving fans a taste of the season to
come - filling them with anticipation that is not possible in a
baseball draft that occurs during the regular baseball season.
Furthermore, the MLB draft was not aired on television until 2007, at
which time only the first round was shown on ESPN2, although the rest
was viewable via the internet. The NFL and NBA drafts are the most
reminiscent of monumental events. In addition to being chock full of
players that will make an immediate impact for their professional
sports teams, NFL and NBA draftees are more widely recognized due to
the dearth of players plucked from college football and basketball,
which are both nationally aired on television.
College football bowl games and the NCAA March Madness undoubtedly
boost the popularity of the NFL and NBA drafts. Meanwhile, the NHL and
MLB do not have the luxury of such prominent counterparts. Until that
time, they will not rank as highly in importance as football and
basketball. Hockey, fortunately, allows for draft players to make
impacts at the professional level in a timely manner, allowing the
hockey draft added credibility over the baseball draft, but it still
remains a distant draft to the likes of the top two contenders.
Then there's baseball, which should consistently bring up the rear as
it is not helped by the timing of the draft or length of time it takes
for draftees to make an impact on the professional level. For such
reasons, the baseball draft has rendered itself almost irrelevant. MLB
has much to learn from its' other major sports counterparts.
The professional sports draft season for the big four sports looks like this:
*National Football League (NFL) - Record Based Without Lottery - End of April
*Major League Baseball (MLB) - Record Based Without Lottery - Early June
*National Hockey League (NHL) - Weighted Lottery for Poor Teams - Late June
*National Basketball Association (NBA) - Weighted Lottery for Poor
Teams - End of June
And the Major American Sports Draft Rankings:
1 - NFL; 2 - NBA; 3 - NHL; 4 - MLB
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
At halftime of any NBA or NFL sports game, you will see the talented and beautiful girls that make up the team dance team. They dance in front of thousands of fans, performing dance routines to perfection. But there are also happens to many differences between NBA and NFL Dance teams. For those who are interested in audition for a professional dance team or those who are just plan curious, here is my guide to NBA and NFL Dance teams
Because NBA dance teams perform in Arenas and NFL cheerleaders are perform on football teams, might possibly be the reason for the differences in uniforms, dance styles etc.
One of the major differences between the an NFL and a NBA dance team is the dance style used. NFL cheerleaders typically have kick lines and use pom poms during their dance routine. Unlike traditional cheerleading, NFL cheerleaders typically don't perform stunts. NBA dance teams usually have a dance style that is typically jazz and hip hop based.
NFL cheerleaders usually wear a uniform that consist of some type of shorts with boots. While with NBA dance teams, you will might see jazz pants being worn.
NFL dance teams usually have show groups which consist of members from the dance team, that travel and perform for military troops, different organizations.
The main similarities between NFL and NBA dance teams is that they both actively work with the community. Many professional dance teams have hold camps for young girls, have signings, help at different charity drives etc.
Both dance teams put out annual swimsuit calendars for the fans. These calendars usually are taken during the summer months at different tropical locations.
When try to decide which league is right for you, first look at your favorite sports team. If you have a favorite sports team, then why not audition and cheer on the team! If you don't have a particular favorite team, then examine the dance style, look etc and see if that is something that works with you.
As a dancer, I have always enjoyed watching professional dance teams perform. The level of skill and talent that is involved in performances is amazing.
NFL and NBA dance teams are add that level of excitement and energy to their sports teams. Professional dancers work extremely hard at what they do , and they dance to whole new level.
The payroll for Mark Cuban's pro basketball team, the Dallas Mavericks, is pegged at $92 million and change this season, according to the web site sportscity.com. But Mark Cuban can afford it, because he's one of the Information Age gurus who didn't bomb out a decade ago. Forbes magazine last year reported his net worth at $2.8 billion. Why, then, would Mark Cuban mess around with a paltry $750,000 insider trading crime, as the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission alleges in a filing today?
Even the lowest-paid Dallas Maverick, benchwarmer Nick Fazekas, makes a reported $711,517. Of course, that's nothing next to Jason Kidd at $21,372,000, or Dirk Nowitzki at $17,178,100.
But Mark Cuban is charged in federal court by the SEC. He is accused of selling 600,000 shares of mamma.com, an Internet search operation, while he possessed confidential information. To avoid a $750,000 loss, that's only a buck-and-a-quarter per share, and if this whole deal is true, Cuban sold high.
The alleged violation of antifraud federal securities laws transpired in June 2004, and even though the Dallas Mavericks didn't make the National Basketball Association finals that season, owner Mark Cuban's mind may have elsewhere at that time of year. Those who still follow the pro game know Cuban for dressing in blue jeans and T-shirts (or team jerseys), sitting behind the team bench and shouting at the referees. There's no skybox at Reunion Arena for Mark Cuban, and wikipedia.org estimates that he has paid $1,665,000 in fines to league offices, which distresses Cuban to such an extent that he gives matching money to charity.
Mark Cuban sure seems to enjoy life more than your average stuffy billionaire, even though a coveted NBA championship has eluded the Dallas Mavericks, and they got knocked out of last spring's playoffs in the first round. At least they are making the playoffs, which was not true eight years ago before he obtained the franchise for $285 million from H. Ross Perot Jr.
What can you say about a guy who once complained that the league's manager of officials (Ed T. Rush) was so lousy, he "wouldn't be able to manage a Dairy Queen?" The Dairy Queen folks were either truly offended and/or saw a chance for publicity, and so Mark Cuban managed a Dairy Queen for a day.
In this mamma.com case, it seems Cuban may be in line for a stiff civil fine from the Securities and Exchange Commission. If the SEC follows through, the NBA may have to wait in line.
The NFL Power Rankings for Week 12 of the 2008 Season:
1. (1) Tennessee Titans (10-0) - They had to prove themselves under pressure during a second-half come-back, but a 24-14 win over Jacksonville puts them at 10-0 now.
2. (2) New York Giants (9-1) - They dismantled the Ravens 30-10, and looked like they are definitely going to be the team to beat from here on out. The defending super bowl champions show no sign of slowing down.
3. (3) Carolina Panthers (8-2) - A 31-22 win over Detroit is just about an expected out-come, but things are sure to be tougher against Atlanta and Green Bay in the coming weeks.
4. (4) Pittsburgh Steelers (7-3) - In a defensive struggle they proved they can win the close games, knocking off San Diego 11-10 (or 18-10 depending on whether you agree with officials).
5. (8) New York Jets (7-3) - Another impressive win, coming in New England this time, and the Jets are really flying high. Favre had another good game, and 258 more passing yards to add to his career totals.
6. (9) Tampa Bay Bucs (7-3) - A 19-13 home win over the Vikings gives them a little momentum heading towards the end of the season, and Garcia is looking pretty good still.
7. (5) Washington Redskins (6-4) - A tough loss to the Cowboys in a 4th quarter melt-down puts them back to 6-4, and could be considered playing for their lives at Seattle on Sunday. Because after that, they play New York and then Baltimore, so it's not an easy road ahead.
8. (6) Baltimore Ravens (6-4) - After beating up some weaker teams, they got brought back down to reality with a humbling by the Giants. Let's see how well they can re-group against Philadelphia on Sunday.
9. (7) New England Patriots (6-4) - The Thursday night loss to the Jets was despite 400 yards passing from Cassel and the offense looked good; but just not good enough.
10. (12) Indianapolis Colts (6-4) - The Colts are still on fire with another win (33-27 over Texans) with Peyton Manning throwing for another 320 yards. They are definitely looking much stronger than earlier in the season.
11. (13) Arizona Cardinals (7-3) - They probably scared some fans along the way, but they took care of the defending NFC West champs, and are sitting pretty for a division title this season.
12. (15) Denver Broncos (6-4) - An important win over the Falcons shows that Cutler can win on the road, and that this team isn't just going to vanish into the night. Important games against the division are coming up soon.
13. (10) Atlanta Falcons (6-4) - A tough loss to the Broncos at home could be costly as the NFC playoff picture takes shape. They need to bounce back quickly if they want to keep pace.
14. (19) Dallas Cowboys (6-4) - Jerry Jones predicted it, and the Cowboys came away with a must-win game over the Redskins. With Romo back at quarterback they played well, and look to take that energy into their games against San Francisco on Sunday.
15. (11) Philadelphia Eagles (5-4-1) - There is no excuse for coming away with a tie against the Bengals, and the Eagles are not looking as good as they should if they want a playoff berth.
16. (17) Minnesota Vikings (5-5) - With even the offense going flat, they lost to the Bucs. It wasn't pretty either, and they need to win this week or the season is basically over for the Vikings.
17. (18) Green Bay Packers (5-5) - Just when you thought the Packers were done, they blow out the Bears and re-gain some fans. They need to keep that momentum flowing on Sunday if they want the NFC to take them seriously again.
18. (20) New Orleans Saints (5-5) - The up-and-down season continues, this time with a win over the Chiefs, as Brees threw for 266 more yards. Playoffs anyone?
19. (21) Miami Dolphins (6-4) - The Dolphins beat another weak team by taking out Oakland 17-15, and it may be time to take notice that Pennington and Ronnie Brown are having good seasons.
20. (14) Chicago Bears (5-5) - The wind sure was taken out of their sails against the Titans, because they came out flat against the Packers and got blown out of the water (3 to 37). Just plain ugly.
21. (25) Cleveland Browns (4-6) - One week after Lewis said the Browns quit, the team rebounded to pound the Bills. Quinn is making this team very interesting to watch now, and now they are worth tuning in to!
22. (16) Buffalo Bills (5-5) - What looked like a very promising season is quickly slipping away from the Bills. They had better get this turned around right away.
23. (22) San Diego Chargers (4-6) - A tough 11-10 loss against Pittsburgh sets them back again, but leaves them still in second place for the AFC West. This week is an important game against Indianapolis if they still want a chance at the playoffs.
24. (24) Jacksonville Jaguars (4-6) - They played the Titans tough, but fell late, and could be looking at a top 10 draft choice next season with some rough match-ups coming up for the Jaguars.
25. (23) Houston Texans (3-7) - They continue to look good while losing, but the losses are really starting to mount up, and this season is turning into yet another wash-out.
26. (28) San Francisco 49ers (3-7) - They broke the log-jam at the bottom of the NFC West to prove that they are the best of the worst. Hopefully more wins are in the future for Singletary's crew.
27. (26) Seattle Seahawks (2-8) - It looked like they might provide a challenge to Arizona in the 4th quarter, but they ultimately choked it away to their 8th loss (already).
28. (27) St. Louis Rams (2-8) - Getting blown out by San Francisco is never a good thing, but this team could be playing for the #1 pick now. Bulger threw for 295 more yards, but if nobody saw it, did it really happen?
29. (29) Oakland Raiders (2-8) - No, 156 yards by Russell is not good enough, not near good enough. Another loss, this time to the Dolphins means that Oakland is heading towards the top of the draft again.
30. (31) Cincinnati Bengals (1-8-1) - They pulled out a tie against Philadelphia. How in the world did they do that? Needless to say, this could be the highlight of their season.
31. (30) Kansas City Chiefs (1-9) - At least the losses are becoming expected now, and at least they have Johnson back. Now the least they could do is offer some refunds to season ticket holders.
32. (32) Detroit Lions (0-10) - At least they made it respectable, and Culpepper did have moments where he looked good against Carolina. But let's face it, 0-10 is oh and ten.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
No, this is not another column posted on the Internet about the housing crisis. The MLS I'm referring to stands for Major League Soccer.
There are a lot of American soccer fans, but very few of them like American soccer. I'm an American. I'm a soccer fan. I like to watch the Premier League, the UEFA Champions League and the FIFA World Cup. But I am not a fan of MLS.
Major League Soccer is disliked by both groups they are trying to reach. The rest of the world's leagues don't respect MLS because they play by a different set of rules. Plus, the players aren't as good. The American sports fan doesn't like MLS because he can see a higher quality game overseas on his satellite dish. If he wants to watch soccer, he'll watch the good soccer in Europe or South America.
While MLS has found a niche with a certain hardcore type of fan in America, it is also caught in the middle of two worlds. They have tried to create a style of soccer that is similar to the rest of the world, but is also American enough to be liked here.
That approach is not working. The MLS season takes place from spring to summer. The best of the world's leagues play their seasons from fall to spring. The MLS has a draft and free agency which accounts for most of the distribution of players. A draft is an American-made event and is unknown to the most respected soccer leagues overseas.
On top of this, the MLS has accidentally become a training ground for the rest of the world. As they continue to grow and develop young players, they have run into the European leagues, which are plucking away the best players. The head coach of the US national team has encouraged his players participating in MLS to join a European league to play with the best in the world. That can't make the MLS establishment very happy.
I have tried to like MLS. Last year, when David Beckham joined the league, I watched every game that was nationally televised all the way to the MLS Cup. I tried to get excited, but it was forced. I just can't do it. I can't get into MLS. And as long as they try to be all things to all fans worldwide, they will not be able to find a permanent home in America, or with me.
I have a different take on why Major League Soccer will never be popular in the United States and it has nothing to do with coaching, star power, or the fact that you cannot use your hands.
Soccer, as wonderful of a sport as it is, just is not designed for American television audiences. Soccer does not support the :30 second commercial format which has long dominated American television advertising. Soccer supports the sponsorship idea where companies sponsor an entire half of play or chunks of the half or a billboard some place within the soccer stadium.
The sponsor way of advertising is perfect for Europe where their television stations display long blocks of commercials and then long blocks of programming. European television audiences are used to watching commercials that last longer than :30 seconds or are shorter than :30 seconds.
In the United States, all of our commercial television programming is based around the :30 second commercial. This is particularly true for most of our sporting events. Both the National Football League and the National Basketball Association have incorporated the "commercial time-out" into the usual play of almost all of their games. This commercial time-out allows companies to place advertising between key moments of play when they suspect that a large audience is watching.
All of the money that the major television networks make comes from advertising. Therefore, it is in their best interest to encourage commercial time-outs during the play of any sporting event. Without real television coverage, coverage on one of the major networks, during a viable time-slot, most sporting events will fly under the radar.
The major networks will fight over broadcasting Major League Soccer, the same way they continually fight over broadcasting the National Football League, once Major League Soccer shows them that advertisers can make money by placing commercials between key moments during the game.
The chances of that becoming a reality are quite slim. One of the great things about soccer is that there are very few time-outs. The beauty of the game is predicated upon strategy. This makes soccer quite different from the two most popular American sports, basketball and football, where every single play can determine who wins or loses.
In soccer, movement is the key, from space to space, from goal to goal, from side to side. Soccer is truly a ballet and for anyone to mess that up by making the game friendlier for advertisers will diminish what makes soccer different and special.
That means, of course, that Major League Soccer will eventually disappear, like all of the soccer leagues before it. Sorry, soccer fans, that's just the way it is here in the States.
Drafted 23rd overall by the Panthers, Stewart has 383 yards rushing on 103 carries. With Deangelo Williams finally breaking out for the Panthers it looks as if Jonathan will have to wait his turn. He has carried the ball effectively when given the ball and will no doubt be a starter in the league. Stewart is a power back and there is always a need for these backs in the league. Will he be a star? It all depends on his work ethic, but as of right now he is going to be a solid back that you can give the ball to 25 times a game. With Jake Delhomme passing and Deangelo getting the rushes, Stewart will have to wait though.
Forte, drafted 13th in the second round is putting up big numbers in his rookie year rushing for 713 yards already. If you are a fantasy guru you know how great this guy is. Forte is on pace to break 1000 yards rushing and only a handful of rookies have accomplished this feat. Look for this guy to have a long career running behind the Bears offensive line. If he stays healthy he is a legitimate threat to gain over 1200 yards rushing year in and year out. He is very reliable and was a serious diamond in the rough.
Do we dare say this guy is better than arkansas teammate Darren Mcfadden? We will have to wait and see to answer that question but Felix has made his argument. Felix rushed for 266 yards on only 30 carries for the Cowboys after being drafted 22 overall, an injury ended his season but look for this guy to be a huge star in this league if he comes back as strong as he started. He is an explosive back that reads his blockers well and gets yards in chunks.
Mcfadden was chosen number 4 overall by the Oakland Raiders. At this point it is really not fair to be able to judge Mcfadden at all, with the whole Raider organization one big mess Mcfadden has fared well considering the circumstances. Mcfadden has rushed for 341 yards on 67 carries which is an average of 5.0 yards per carry so no argument here. Mcfadden was expected to be the best back obviously in this class drafted at number four but with the emegence of the rest of the class he will have an enormous amount of pressure the rest of his career to live up to the hype.
Steve Slaton-WEST VIRGINIA
Steve Slaton, drafted 26th overall in the 3rd round has been a steal so far, he has had a breakout year as a rookie and has shown he is a threat to not only rush the ball (545 yards) but also catch the ball (198 yards). The question is whether he can take the beating of the NFL week after week and have the durability to remain a threat throughout his career. At this point it looks like he may just be a back that can carry the ball 10-15 times a game and be a good third down back to dump the ball to.
Hightower of the Cardinals recently received the starting job from Edgerrin James. Drafted 14th in the 5th round, Hightower, alot like Slaton has shown the ability to run the ball effectively and catch it out of the backfield. Hightower is a strong back and durability doesn't seem to be a problem with him. In his only start of the season he rushed for 109 yards on 22 carries. Hightower has 242 yards rushing and 145 yards receiving to go along with 7 touchdowns. Everytime he has been given the ball inside the 5 yard line he has not been denied and has scored everytime. Hightower looks to be another back to come from a small college and turn heads. Look for him to have a successful career possibly the long term back for the Cardinals, you could see him in the backfield with Matt Leinart in the future.
Kevin Smith-CENTRAL FLORIDA
Kevin Smith was taken with the first pick of the 3rd round by the Detroit Lions and is sort of in the same boat as Mcfadden. Smith has done an amazing job running the ball with what he has to work with. The lions don't have a great offensive line and Smith should be a great running back for many years if a line is created in front of him. He has rushed for 401 yards and 5 touchdowns as the primary running back for Detroit.
Charles was drafted 10th in the 3rd round to the Kansas City Chiefs. He has rushed for 274 yards and an average of 5.5 yards per carry. He also has almost 100 yards receiving. It's not for sure if Charles will ever be an every down back in the NFL but has great breakaway speed and is excellent at cutting back against the grain. He will definately be a running back you will want to keep an eye on in the future because anytime he touches the ball on offense he is a threat to break for some big plays.
Chris Johnson-EAST CAROLINA
Well, first of all what can you say about this guy? GREATNESS. Chris Johnson was drafted 24th overall by the Tennessee Titans. He has rushed for an amazing 723 yards and caught 26 balls for 179 yards. How about another word to explain him. EXPLOSIVE. Chris Johnson is going to be around in this league for a long time. He is one of the fastest running backs in the league if not the fastest. He will no doubt break 1000 yards as a rookie barring injury and he is a game breaker running back. If you haven't had a chance to watch this guy play, make some time.
OTHER NOTABLES TO KEEP AN EYE ON
Mike Hart- Got injured too early in the year to really have an idea of what he will bring, so mark him down as a rookie again next year.
BenJarvuc Green-Ellis- With Lawrence Maroney hurt he has gotten the carries for the Patriots and has done a fine job, don't look for him to be a star in this league but could possibly be a reliable 3rd down back for his career.
Ray Rice- Rice has 356 yards rushing and could possibly emerge as a star if given a chance to be a starter week after week, he is currently in the shadow of Willis Mcgahee but has the potential to be a bruising back for years to come.
Monday, November 17, 2008
The thrilling experience of skating best satisfies a person's thrilling instincts. Skating is one of the extreme sports extensively played nowadays. However the wonderful effect has been added with introduction to the skating world of skate shoes. The skaters found it difficult to use ordinary or casual sport shoes for skating. Therefore they preferred to have special skating shoes. Now the shoe stores explode with a variety of skating shoes.
The skate shoes are only available in small shoe stores which offer skating stuff. Skating requires other typical instruments as well. However, these stores are scarcely visited but only by the skaters who are die hard fans. Today the skating industry has developed into a separate business entity. The business only in the USA touches millions every year.
As the skaters should have typical skating material with skating shoes. So they find these shops and buy those shoes to fit the requirements of perfect skating; for they cannot find that stuff anywhere else.
Nike has established a different tag in this field. Skating has been made practical by Nike skate shoes. Nike makes special shoes for the skaters to give them a different edge. Nike unlike other skate shoes brands allocate skate commodities to those small shops to be disseminated to the aspirants of skateboarding.
Nike skate shoes are not simply skating shoes but they have a lasting quality and are trendy. Nike has styled the skating shoes by decorating it with supreme design to earn the repute of a differntial standard.
Nike Inc. has allocated a different category to skateboarding shoe manufacturing. Nike's chief concern to focus on is to produce such goods and services that do not hurt the knees with a different design and quality. Hence skating is considered to be an extreme sport so knees get injured more often. Now by using Nike skate shoes kness have been protected.
Nike has given new dimensions to skate shoe industries and skating itself. Now the skaters know what a quality skate shoes should have. The comfortably made shoes provided with velvet cushions Nike skate shoes have been into market to maintain a symbolic difference in the field of skate shoe industry. Nike shoes have motivated the lethargic skaters. Nike skate shoes' air soles have further made the skating easy and enjoyable.
They are softly furnished with breathing capability. The middle of shoe takes the responsibility to maintain weight. They are lightweighted mesh tongue allowing extensive ventilation with flexible straps to grip perfectly and fit accurately. Heals provide better footbed. These shoe have profound capability to provide double density to reduce moisture and make breathing comfortable.
Nike's such astounding feautres manifest company's concern to the skateboarding shoe department. The skaters always ask for Nike brands because they know the company's reputation in every walk of life so does it has promoted its name in the field of skateboarding.
Nike is the name of reliance, quality and brand. Its unique designs are enough to enhance performance of skaters. Nike has customer support and contact us facility to listen to the complaints of the customers and make the future product in accordance with demands of the people.
When purchasing gifts for someone it is always a good idea to pick something original that the gift recipient would have never thought of, but will still love. Anyone can buy a NFL team sweatshirt, a jersey, or officially licensed baseball cap. So where do you go to find something original that even the most dedicated sports fan doesn't have yet? Here are some suggestions for you.
Fathead (fathead.com)- You've seen the commercials and heard about them, but many sports fans either won't shell out $100, or simply haven't gone on the website to purchase one. These life size sports posters are a great gift idea and will be loved by every sports fan. The best thing about them is that you can move them from wall to wall without using tape, hooks, nails, etc. The "fatheads" come in team helmets, NASCAR stock cars, and of course life size photos or professional athletes.
Sports Ticket Stubs (Stubs4Sale.com, EBay, etc.)- What would be a better gift for your sports loving friend then a ticket from a big game? As a Detroit Tigers fan I have my own personal collection of World Series tickets and programs that I wouldn't give up for the world. Stubs4sale.com has World Series Programs, World Series Tickets, and many other tickets and items that sports fan may be unaware of. Some tickets and programs even to major events can be purchased for under $30. If you decide to go with this gift then see below for a must addition to it.
Sports memorabilia displays (Thatsmyticket.com) - If something is worth collecting it is worth displaying and protecting. Thatsmyticket.com has displays, holders, and much more. One of my favorite products is the MLB team ticket albums. Each album is very inexpensive at around $13 and has a MLB logo on the front. The pages contain sleeves so you can display all of the ticket stubs from sporting events you have attended. There are many inexpensive displays like the ticket bricks that are cheap, simple, and display well in any room. One last product that they are known for are blown up ticket stubs from major events such as the World Series, these are huge and a very fun and unique gift.
Dog Team Apparel- What better way to show someone you care than buying a Chicago Cubs dog collar or an NFL jersey for a puppy? MVPDogs.com has a nice selection of licensed apparel for dogs. Leashes, collars, chew toys; they have it all for dogs. Where else can you find a Dale Earnhardt Jr. dog water bowl? This is a very unique and odd choice that will definitely be remembered by the recipient. Most jersey items are priced at $29.99.
Aqua Golf- Who doesn't have a friend who is obsessed with golf? Aqua Golf is a piece of floating turf that can be placed in the middle of a pool to work on your short game. An odd but very creative idea would make an extremely unique and unforgettable gift. These will run you around $60.
The Bumper Dumper- This is my personal favorite unique sports fan gift. The product is a toilet that can be hooked up to a trailer hitch of a vehicle. Visit BumperDumper.com to check these out. This would be a funny idea for the camper, tailgater, and hunter. Retails for $69.99
I hope these have been some helpful ideas and good luck in your Holiday shopping!
Sunday, November 16, 2008
Honorable Mentions (in no specific order)
Michael Vick- Vick definitely has to make the honorable mention list due to his complete athletic ability. With Vick on the field there was never a game decided before it started. Vick had the rare combination of a cannon arm and rocket speed, or, for lack of words he was a running back with an arm. Vick was elusive and anyone that has watched him play would not argue with him at least being an honorable mention. Vick is 138th on the all time list of passing records with 11,505 yards but definitely blew anyone watching him away with his ability. Vick played for the Atlanta Falcons professionally from 2001-2006.
Donovan Mcnabb- Mcnabb is another quarterback that liked to use his feet to make plays. The only downfall for Mcnabb has been injuries, Mcnabb has played in one Superbowl in 2004 and probably should have won but got tired down the stretch. He's thrown for 27,582 yards and counting. Mcnabb came into the league in 1999 and still currently plays for the Philadelphia Eagles.
Steve Mcnair- Mcnair makes the list because he passed for 31,304 and came up one yard short of winning a superbowl. Mcnair played professionally from 1995-2007 for the Tennessee Titans and then the Baltimore Ravens.
Vinny Testaverde- The strong armed Testaverde passed for a lot of yards, and was mostly consistant in his 20 years in the league. The closest Testaverde ever came to a Super Bowl was playing in the AFC championship game, twice. Vinny bounced around the league but definitely put up numbers everywhere he went, especially in his younger years. Testaverde finished his career with 46,233 passing yards from 1987-2007. Vinny bounced around the league and played professionally for 8 teams.
Eli Manning- With his Super Bowl win in the 2007 NFL season Manning put himself near breaking the top 10 quarterbacks list. The only downfall for Manning is the way he has quickly climbed the list. Manning was consistently inconsistent for the first 3 years of his career before his Super Bowl run in 2007 and has 13,120 yards passing which don't even put him on top of his draft class, (Carson Palmer is ahead of him with 15,630 yards). Eli came into the league in 2004 and is currently the starting quarterback for the New York Giants.
Ben Roethlisberger- Big Ben also has a Super Bowl ring defeating the Seattle Seahawks in 2005 and is only a few yards behind Manning with 13,075 yards passing in the same number of seasons. He has shown alot of heart, not only playing through injuries but coming back after a serious motorcycle accident during the 2005 offseason. Ben currently still starts at quarterback for the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Drew Brees- How about Drew Brees? To not put this guy on the list would be a huge mistake. Brees was forced out of San Diego so they could move Philip Rivers into the starting spot. At this point it was questioned whether Brees would be the same player coming off a shoulder injury, all it took was one believer and the Saints believed in Brees, and the rest has been a success. Brees has not played in a Super Bowl but you cannot argue with his leadership and passing ability. Brees has 23,752 passing yards which is 64th all time and has been consistent week in and week out.
10. Kurt Warner- I know I know I hear the muttering in the background and people are yelling no consistency, or, no way. But here's the facts. Kurt Warner went from being a hardworking grocery store stalker to an outstanding NFL quarterback in the blink of an eye. That in itself shows character, and will. Also, Warner was the quarterback of what people were calling "the best show on turf" when he played for the Rams. Warner currently has 26,439 yards passing for his career and is an inspiring story to anyone looking for one of those, great stories. Warner has been in the NFL as a starter since 1999 when he took over for injured Trent Green and became an instant star. Warner started to show signs of slowing down and left the rams. Everyone thought his career was pretty much done, then just when you count out Warner again he comes back just as strong as ever. Warner is currently the starting quarterback for the Arizona Cardinals.
9. Peyton Manning- Here comes the grumbles again, but rest assured as good as this guy is, the people on the list ahead of him are great players. Manning has a Super Bowl title in 2006 and has racked up numerous awards including MVP awards in 2003 and 2004. Manning also has 43,634 which is 8th on the alltime list. Manning puts in tons of time practicing and so the story goes, even practices taking a knee. That says a lot about a person, someone that is willing to put in that much time. Manning would be a lot higher on our list but for all the times he has had a chance to reach the Super Bowl has only arrived once. Rest assured though if Manning wins another Super Bowl and keeps up the pace he is on to break most of the NFL records, Manning may someday rank number one on the ALL-TIME list. This however is the list of the last 10 years.
8. Drew Bledsoe- Drew is 7th on the all-time passing list with 44,611. He is just ahead of Manning and has one more Super Bowl appearance. Bledsoe lost the 1996 Super Bowl and then came in for Tom Brady in the AFC championship game in 2001. The Patriots eventually won the Super Bowl and Drew earned his spot at number 8 on the list. Drew was consistent during his 13 years from 1993-2006 and therefore earned his spot.
7. Warren Moon- Warren is the only player to be in the NFL hall of fame and the CFL hall of fame and that will probably never change. Moon is 4th on the all-time passing leaders list with 49,325 yards. Warren is a 9 time pro bowl selection and played for 5 teams from 1984-2000. Warren Moon is also the only african american quarterback currently in the NFL.
6. Troy Aikman- Aikmen is 23rd on the career passing list with 32,942 yards. Aikmen won 3 Super Bowls and is a 6 time pro bowl selection. He was the quarterback on some of the best teams of all-time. There really should be no argument here. Aikmen played from 1989-2000 all for the Dallas Cowboys. In 2006 Aikmen was inducted in to the NFL Hall Of Fame.
5. Steve Young- Young is 21st on the all-time passing list with 33,124 yards. Young played professionally for the San Fransisco 49ers from 1985-1999. He is in the NFL Hall Of Fame. Young is ranked this high because he is a 7 time pro bowler, has won 3 super bowls, and has 2 NFL MVP awards.
4. John Elway- Elway set rushing records along with passing records for a quarterback and therefore is ranked 4th on the list. Elway won 2 super bowls in 1997 and 1998. Elway was inducted into the Hall Of Fame in 2004. He won the MVP in 1987 and is a 9 time pro bowl selection. Elway is 3rd on the all-time passing list with 51,475 and also rushed for 3,407 yards. Elway played his entire career for the Denver Broncos from 1983-1998.
3. Dan Marino- The one knock on Dan Marino is that he hasn't won a super bowl. Normally I would say, so what, but considering super bowls was a factor, he sits here, at number 3. Marino is second on the all-time passing list with 61,361 and played from 1983-1999. He is a 9 time pro bowl selection and is also a member of the NFL hall of fame. All I have to say to Dan is come back like players do in basketball, sit on the bench and get yourself a ring, maybe even take a few snaps.
2. Brett Favre- Favre is number one on the career passing list with 63,467 and has played for 3 teams in his illustrious career (Falcons,Packers,Jets). Favre is a 9 time pro bowl selection and 3 time NFL MVP. Favre only has one superbowl championship (1996) and well, that's one more than the guy he's ahead of not to mention he passed him in the record books.
1. Tom Brady- So we started with a controversy putting Michael Vick into the honorable mention list, so why not end with one? And while this shouldn't be much of a controversy once I'm done explaining I'm sure your thinking to yourself, this better be good. Tom has only been in the league since 2000 and has played in 4 super bowls. He is already a 4 time pro bowler, and 2 time NFL MVP. Tom also has the record for most touchdown passes in a season(50 breaking Peyton Manning's record), a record that nearly every sports analyst claimed could never be broken. The bottom line about Tom Brady is that he wins and that is what makes him the number one quarterback of the last decade. Throw in an NFL MVP and you should now be on my side.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
NY Jets at New England - This is a game that pits Favre against the mighty Patriots in prime time. This should be a monster game but the truth is, it is not Favre that will determine the outcome. Thomas Jones and the Jets defense will be the keys in this game, and they will rise to the occasion for one of the few times ever in Foxboro.
Result - Jets Win
Denver at Atlanta - The Broncos and the Falcons are a great match up and both teams are capable of scoring. The Falcons have yet to lose at home and the defense has been on a roll. Somone else on a roll is Matt Ryan. The rookie does not look like one so much right about now. He is actually leading the Falcons to playoff contention. The Broncos have an offense that can absolutely explode so this should be an interesting match up. I like Cutler in a must win situation.
Result - Broncos Win
Philadelphia at Cincinnati - The Eagles are smarting after the tight loss against the Giants and will be looking to take it out of the Bengals hide.
Result - Eagles WIn
Chicago at Green Bay - Here it is. The annual slugfest of two teams that seem to hate each other more every year. This is a game that will go a long ways towards determining the playoffs in this division. The Packers will pull it out at home after a couple of close disappointments.
Result - Packers win
Houston at Indianapolis - The Colts seem to finally be looking like the Colts again but then along comes Houston. Houston seems to come close to beating, (and occasionally actually beating) the Colts every time they play. This time, the Colts will run all over them.
Result - Colts Win
New Orleans at Kansas City - New Orleans is hurting and the Chiefs are barely even there. Though their has been a Tony Gonzalez sighting the last couple of weeks in KC, they will lose to a great offense.
Result - Saints win
Oakland at Miami - This game is between two teams headed in very different directions. The Dolphins will wave as they go by.
Result - Dolphins win
Baltimore at NY Giants - Now this is a slobberknocker that should be fun to watch. The Ravens will actually give the Giants a challenge with a defense that can actually slow down the vaunted Giants running game. Young Joe Flacco gets his first taste of Giants stadium and the New York crazies. Good luck young rookie.
Result - Giants Win
Minnesota at Tampa Bay - Tampa Bay really needs a win to keep from losing more ground to Carolina in the NFC South. The Vikings are on a bit of a roll lately in spite of Gus under center. Adrian Peterson is running wild. This will stop against Tampa. Nobody runs on Tampa for long.
Result - Bucs Win
Detroit at Carolina - Um. Lets see........Duh.
Result - Carolina Wins
St. Louis at San Francisco - This game will go a long ways towards determining pretty much nothing. The Niners looked pretty decent against the Cardinals on Monday night and the Rams have been up and down depending on the weather. I would say the Niners are more likely to be up in this one.
Result - Niners win
Arizona at Seattle - This game has Matt Hasselback rejoining the Seahawks this week along with Branch at wide receiver. I expect the jolt at home might just give the Cardinals a bit of a surprise.
Result - Seahawks win
San Diego at Pittsburgh - What was once looked forward to as a huge game has now become an almost after thought after the melt down in San Diego this season. They are just not the same team as before. The Steelers are still rock solid and tough as nails. And they get Willie Parker back this week.
Result - Steelers Win
Tennessee at Jacksonville - Upset special of the week here. The Jags will shock the Titans behind a fantastic running game. They have been getting the ground game going the last couple of weeks.
Result - Jaguars win
Dallas at Washington - The return of Romo will be enough to lift Dallas over the Skins. This will be a close game, but the Cowboys get a win they simply must have.
Result - Cowboys win
Cleveland at Buffalo - Brady Quinn showed that he will be an elite NFL quarterback as he matures. It is a shame that the Browns took an entire season to figure that out. The Bills are in a must win situation for the playoffs.
Result - Bills Win
Score - Bills 28 Browns 21
Week Ten Record - 9-5
Season Record - 88-56
Friday, November 14, 2008
Ok...little Johnny just made a terrific pass. You, like the proud supporting parent you are, shout out, "WAY TO GO!" or "AWESOME PLAY!" Better yet, you see that an opponent is wide open, cutting down the middle towards the goal. You help the team out by shouting, "WHO'S GOT NUMBER 15? THEY'RE WIDE OPEN!"
Did you really deserve that withering look from your little player, making it clear that your vocal support is about as welcome as a zit on the tip of their nose on prom night?
If you've been a soccer mom longer than 5 minutes you've noticed your vocal support (that would be cheering) is not always welcome by the player, the coaches, and the ref. There are some good reasons why:
· From the player - well, that's obvious. You're the parent and, therefore, you know nothing. Besides, it's embarrassing to be seen having parents.
· Coaches point out that parental instruction and calling the player's name confuses and distracts the player. The coach expects to be the only one calling plays on the field and the players need to be attentive to his voice.
· Refs get huffy when you question their calls - or yell out that they missed a call (usually against the other team). You can actually be thrown off the field if you get too loud in this category.
So how can you cheer at your kid's soccer game and not get in trouble?
· Never single out a player - When you cheer, cheer for the team. Use the team named or the color of the jerseys. For instance, "Go Strikers!" or "Great move Blue!" Do not say, "Great move, Ashley!"
· Keep it general - Don't point out specific problems (the coach should be handling that). Instead of yelling, "Forwards, you're playing too far up, get back..." Yell something like, "OK blue, stay strong!"
· Keep it positive - Never yell out negative cheers - no matter how poorly the team or an individual plays. Really, the team or the player knows when something didn't work; they don't need you to point it out to them. This is when the team needs encouragement. Things like "Bad luck!", "Stay strong!", or "Let's get it back!" let's the team know you're behind them.
Don't question the ref - out loud that is. Mistakes are made, life isn't fair, and referees are human. I'm not saying the quality of the referee is not important to the quality of the game, and, especially at the higher levels, the safety of the players. I am saying that there's nothing you can do about it during a game, and, if you push it, you can be banned from the game, or even multiple games. Save any indignation for an email to the Soccer Association, where it may help, if enough parents email, to get that referee kicked back to under 8s league.
Stick to these rules and you'll be in good shape...at lease with the coaches and refs. For your own kids, ah well, depending on the age, they'll only be happy if you drive them to the field and wait for them in the car. I suggest negotiation...you'll only drive them if you're allowed to cheer...but you promise you'll keep it to a dull roar and triple promise you won't use their name.
When it gets too hard to stick to these rules; the game gets exciting, or you just have to point out that your player needs to stay to the right so the same person won't get by them for the tenth time, try distracting yourself. Walk around the field. If there are other games going on at the same time, watch one of those. Call someone on your cell phone...anything. Bring your camera and take pictures. Anything. The coach, refs, and maybe even you kid will appreciate your efforts.