again, i've been neglecting the blog this week. as always, i beg your forgiveness, o sweet clean blog reader. the second summer session has started here at UCSB and i am the instructor for SOC108ST, which is a course on content analysis. it takes up a ton of my time, so leisure activiites like the blog tend to fall by the wayside. if i could only get paid to blog so that i could drop out of grad school and do this blogging thing full time...are you listening to me nick denton? i think it's about time you added a sports blog to your gawker empire....
anyways, i've got a bunch of sports quick hits to go over with you.
1) the NCAA takes a stand on native american mascots...sorta. if you haven't heard, the NCAA is barring any school with a native american mascot from post season play. while it is not an outright ban, i suppose that this is a step in the right direction. the only problem i have is that it makes an exception for football, the biggest sport in college athletics today, since football doesn't technically have a postseason. so technically speaking, the florida state seminoles could still possibly win the national championship, which is kinda f-ed up. i mean if you're gonna take a stand, then take a freakin' stand. in any case, there are plenty of people who are up in arms about this. but this seems like a no brainer to me. i mean what if someone decided to name their team something like the texas state dahmers and justify it by saying something like, "it's representative of how we're going to eat up the competition." of course, it's ridiculous and offensive to the 40-something victims of dahmer. so now let's substitute the 40 something people with an entire continent of people and a complete way of life and i think it's clear that these things names have to go. you can make any kind of argument about how these kind of things honor the native american, but i think that this is a bankrupt idea since most indian mascots are pretty offensive. if these schools really believed this and portrayed native americans in an honorable manner, then maybe native americans would have never gotten into a tizzy in the first place.
as i mentioned before, there are plenty of media columnists who are against this idea. ray ratto of espn.com goes as far as to call the NCAA the thought police. even worse, his column uses a terrible argument saying that if we make exceptions for native americans now, people like PETA will start to demand that the NCAA eliminate animal mascots. well, ray, i'm pretty sure that PETA is already on this case, and this argument is analagous to the argument that gay marraige will open the door for the legalization of incest, bestiality, etc. both of them are completely ludicrous arguments. i just don't see how we can be ok with this kind of thing in this day and age, dukes of hazzard remakes notwithstanding.
in any case, i just can't see how any major sports school can't change their name now. i mean imagine florida state forfeiting all of it's post season chances for every single one of their teams solely to satisfy football boosters. just not gonna happen. anyways, at this point, perhaps we can start talking getting rid of the really offensive native american mascots in pro sports.
2) bob knight is calling the NCAA a bunch of douchebags again. in his testimony in the NIT case. the NIT is suing the NCAA for trying to force schools to always accept NCAA tournament bids for their basketball tournaments over NIT invitations. this in itself is ludicrous since i can't think of a single school, even ones coached by NCAA hater bob knight that would ever accept an NIT bid over the big dance, but that's something else altogether. of course he's right when he calls the NCAA a monopoly, but of course, bob knight is a big douchebag. why can't coach k say something like this to get people's attention?
3) one of the san francisco giants radio announcers is in hot water for making racists comments on the air during one of his tirades against the slumping team. specifically he called out the players of carribean descent for being "brain-dead". people are also upset that he said that manager felipe alou brain had turned into "cream of wheat". the logic being that the old cream of wheat used to have a image of a slave cook as its logo, but i agree with the management on this one, the cream of wheat comment has to be taken completely out of context to be offensive. what i dont' agree with is the flagship station not firing the announcer. rather they wussed out and suspended him for a week. anyways, this kinda stuff happens all the time in sports as i've pointed out on this blog before, but i wanted to call attention to this since it happened in san francisco. so i just wanted to stick it to all of you norcal snobs that you can be just as big of a-holes as us socal folk.
4) a non sports quick hit - a mother whose son died in the war in the mideast is staging a protest outside of president bush's ranch in crawford texas. before i say anything else, let me just first take a moment to voice my displeasure that george w. claims texas as his home when he was born in new england, grew up in new england, and went to college in new england. again, it's sorta like the norcal claim that everyone in a certain region is more enlightened or more sophisticated than everyone else. again, let me re-iterate, there are just as many d-bags in the northeast (if not more, have you ever accidentally made eye contact with anyone in new york?) as there are in texas. and we're still bigger and we still can kick any other state's ass.
but i digress, what i think is interesting is that california senator barbara boxer finally made a reference to the vietnam war as a point of comparison for this war. this is the first time i've heard the comparison in the media and all i have to say is that it's about freakin' time. for those of you against this war, and are struggling how to convince regular folks who usually don't care to try and do something, i think that this is a good tactic. remember how quicked we pulled out of vietnam once the footage hit the tv. there are over 1800 dead us soldiers as a result of this war and god knows how many iraqi civilians. i think that it is real interesting that we haven't seen any real footage like the kind we saw back then (of course i'm using the metaphorical "we" since i wasn't there). sorry to get political here on this space, but dammit, the mom who is staging the protest means business and i'm all for helping her out. you know how conservatives get all bent out of shape when people like me "play the race card?" you know why they hate it...they know i'm right. so let's start pulling out the vietnam war card, because when the comparison is so apparent, they will also know we're right.
5) for all you skateboard fans out there, the x games were this weekend in LA. it is the first time in three years that i've missed them. but thanks to expn, there's plenty of just real kick-ass footage of the highlights.
6) t.o. reported. he doesn't have a new contract, so i cna't imagine him not being a distraction, but if pro football players are really professionals, they should just chalk it up to t.o. just being t.o.
richard seymoure got a new deal and shaun alexander signed a one year deal, making the world fairly stable in fantasy land. shaq also got paid, as did daunte culpepper, so maybe things aren't as bad as i thought they were in contract fairness land.
7) another non sports quick hits - did anyone hear that there's a blackface scene in the new dukes of hazzard movie? scroll to the bottom of the review to find out more about it. but seriously, W. T. F?