1.31.2006

nature - 10,000, humans - 0



watch the video. seriously, i promise that it's worth it.

and then right after, the bull yelled at the crowd, "are you not entertained?"

did any of you know that jerome bettis is from detroit?

the fact that this is the primary story line of this year's superbowl should tell you how crappy it is going to be. seriously, how much time can espn devote to telling us that that the oldest player playing is from here. yesterday i counted at least 9 different stories using this angle on espn.com, cnnsi.com, and sportingnews.com. seriously, who the eff cares where the hell jerome bettis is from? do you think that he started the season telling himself, "i really owe it to the community of detroit to get to the superbowl this year, you know to give back something..." the truth is jerome bettis really doesn't care that the superbowl is in his hometown, and neither should you. anyways, let me tell you why this "jerome is from detroit" angle is such bad news for an enjoyable super-bowl.

1) this has nothing to do with the game. the only thing i can even remotely think of is that jerome bettis might be a little distracted. sorry, bettis has been in the league for a zillion years, i don't think having the super bowl in his hometown is a distraction. after all pitttspurgh is only a few hours drive from detroit. it's not like he hasn't seen his family at all this year.

2) bettis may be the oldest and most likable guy in the superbowl, but he is far from being one of the best. players that will have more of an impact in superbowl XL than jerome bettis: shaun alexander, ben rothlisba;lkd, matt hasselbeck, hines ward, troy polamalu, jerry porter, walter jones, heath miller, matt strong, joe jurevicius....i could go on, but i won't. my point here is that a scrub like otis anderson was more valuable to his supebowl team than bettis is to his. leadership, lockerroom presence, blah blah blah...i think we know how i feel about all that crap. anyways, all this leads to...

3) we can't help but be disappointed when jerome bettis doesn't even run for 80 yards. all this hype is doing is making a really likable player into an overexposed one.

i know that you've heard this screed before, but the last team to truly dominate the league was dallas in 93...maybe baltimore in 2002, but i can't give it to them because their offense was so mediocre. not that i mind the trend of competitive games in the superbowl, but sometimes it's cool to see a team like the niners in the eighties or the cowboys in the nineties put up fireworks. you see, i watch sports because i like watching football players execute. i could give two shits about them trying hard. if i wanted to see people trying hard, i would go to one of the strawberry fields in oxnard and watch immigrants try to feed their families in mexico. that's trying hard. anyways, that's why it was so disappointing to see the colts lose. they seemed to have that air about them, but in retrospect, it's painfully obvious that the fall short of the mark of true football greatness. the only hope that i have for this year's game is that it features two quarterbacks who can fling the rock around when the conditions are right. let's hope that defense fails in this year's game.

the final point is, last year we had such better storylines with T.O. coming back to make a difference in the game and the pats going for dynasty status, both story lines that actually had something to do with football. this year we get old and cute. way to go detroit.

anyways, not that this matters since i don't know a goddammed thing about football, but i was going with the steelers at first. seemed logical since they have all the mo, but it seems like everyone and their mom is taking pittsburgh. and gamblor commands us, when everyone in the room is going one way, you go the other. not that i think that seattle is that much better a team than pittsburgh, but they do have a better offensive line than pittsburgh, which really should make a difference. so i'll go ahead and take seattle straight up to win.

p.s. for an amusing satire on the bettis story angle, check out cracked.com's espn spoof.

1.26.2006

big news! some athletes are a-holes!

here's a fun little story from GQ online about the 10 most hated athletes in pro sports. granted it's GQ and not SI, but still, it's fun to read that the diamondbacks think that curt schilling doctored his famous bloody sock to seem like a hero .


i'd like to thank heinz ketchup...

bonus schilling! i was looking for stupid pictures of curt schilling and ran across this, the worst website design of all time.

1.25.2006

k-fed gets his first casio keyboard...



what is it about the rest of us normal humans that prevent us from seeing what britney spears sees in kevin federline? i suppose he wins since i'm the one wasting my time and your web-browsing time on him, but seriously, does anyone think that this is good? what is he doing in this video clip? why does he keep saying "fire!" shouldn't child protective services step in at this point? i'm so confused right now.

i never thought i'd find as big as a waste of human life as fred durst, but i stand corrected. popozao!

(link from BWE)

1.24.2006

identity politics at its worst


i demand that the NFL retire Dat Nguyen's #59 permanently

jackie robinson's daughter doesn't want roberto clemente's number retired. according to the story, a group called Hispanics Across America (is that like Hands Across America?) is calling for roberto clemente's number 21 to be retired from all league play the way robinson's number 42 was retired. their argument is that he paved the way for the latino ball player the same way that jackie robinson paved the way for black ballplayers. robinson daughter, of course is against this because "To my understanding, the purpose of retiring my father's number is that what he did changed all of baseball, not only for African-Americans but also for Latinos, so I think that purpose has been met." in other words, she saying, "what about my dad?". i don't know which side i dislike more. as if honoring another great ballplayer is going to somehow diminish the honor that was already bestowed upon jackie robinson. that's like saying having a hispanic history month diminished the importance of black history month. it's as if she thinks that jackie robinson and roberto clemente were racing to the slides and jackie got there and yelled "first!"

on the other hand, i also think that it's kinda lame for this hispanics across america group to demand that major leauge baseball honor latino players in this way. while there are plenty of disputes about whether or not jackie robinson was the actual first african american ever to play in the major leagues, his role in the integration of baseball is undeniable. roberto didn't have nearly the same kind of impact in that way. he was a great player and a great humanitarian (which is why the humanitarian award is named after him) but nothing like robinson.

and really, it just seems to me, they chose clemente cause he has the best numbers (which to be fair, is part of the reason why robinson was successful), and if you want to honor the players with the best numbers, there are already plenty of ways they do that (gold gloves, MVP's, Hall of Fames, etc.).

beleive it or not, i actually don't think they should have retired jackie robinson's number because 1) i'm almost sure he wasn't the real first african american in the big leagues as there were several african americans that played in the late 1800's. robinson was the first after the major leauges banned african americans from playing: important, but not first. and 2) it sets up a heirarchy of oppression that does in fact say that african-american intergration is more important than other kinds of integration. i.e. why hasn't anyone retired hideo nomo's number yet for being the first japanese player in the bigs?

nfl coaching carousel update

2 more posts got filled. additionally, mike mularkey resigned from the bills which brings the total number of posts available or were available to 10. guess what we're projecting to be the number of african american coaches hired to be? hint: it rhymes with zero.

Houston: interviewed: gary kubiak (denver's off. coordinator), jerry gray (buffalo's def. coordinator), cam cameron (san diego's off. coordinator), al saunders (kc's off. coordinator), scott linehan (miami's off. coordinator), and kippy brown (texan's receiver's coach). kubiak was hired and he is white, brown was the only african american candidate.

Buffalo: interviewed: dick jauron (detriot's interim head coach), mike sherman (former packer's head coach), dom capers (former texans head coach), jim caldwell (indy's qb/assistant head coach). jauron got the job, only caldwell is african american.

totals, for the eight posts filled so far: number of total candidates - 50; african american coaches interviewed - 9, for a total of 18% of interviews going to african-americans, and of course the big one...not a single black coach hired.

on the bright side, some other media outlets are finally picking up on this story. peter king mentioned it in his monday morning quarterback column yesterday. michael smith also has a column about it on espn.com today. his assertion however is that networking is the key, which seems stupid to me because these black coaches have been in the league forever and you would assume that they know plenty of people...just none that think black people can coach. anyways, the point is, these major media outlets are ripping me off and not givng me any credit....what abou....ahh never mind.

1.23.2006

81 effing points



hopefully in the midst of all the football hulabaloo, you didn't miss the fact that kobe scored 81 points in a single game last night. a number that is just simply unfathomable to me.

now i'm usually not a kobe apologist. i'm still a little mad that he ran shaq out of town, but from the early stages of the season, i knew that kobe would be an interesting story to follow this season. i mean imagine watching a major team sport where one guy literally carries an entire team. as chuck klosterman wrote, it's like watching an eighth grade basketball team and one of the kids is 6'6" and has a mustache. you know that is all the team has, and dammit, he's going to drop 50 on you anyways in a junior high school game. seriously, it is high drama to watch a team of complete scrubs play along side a top 5 player and really not give a damn that he's the only one scoring. it's as if the lakers think that the rules have changed to "you win if kobe scores 50 points". that team just doesn't do anything else. they don't play defense, they don't set screens, and they don't run an offense. all they do is pass to kobe and get out of the way.

even better, it is interesting to watch someone who just doesn't care what anyone says, doesn't care what history tells us about ball hogs and winning championships, and ignores every tenet we know about playing a team sport and just shoot the ball everytime he touches the ball. the crazy thing about this is that the lakers win about half the time he does this. that's the crazy thing about last night, the lakers were behind double digits at the beginning of the second half, so his shots were taken within the flow of the game.

usually when we see someone as selfish as kobe, you can almost bank on a bad team with lots of chemistry problems, and lots of drama for the media to cover. but in the case of the lakers this year, the rest of that team is soooooooo bad, that instead, you have 11 guys who are just collecting a paycheck and one guy who doesn't care if they win or lose as long as he shoots the ball 85% of the time. no locker room squabbles, no complaining from phil, and the media seems to be content with praising kobe's indivdual performance instead of criticizing their mediocre record. in any case, i only was able to catch the last few minutes of the game and anytime someone even sniff's wilt's 100 it's completely compelling sports watching.

again, usually you only see this kind of thing maybe once every two or three years, but again, in the case of kobe, this is the second time this season that we've seen this. and if the rest of the lakers continue to suck, i'm guessing we'll see this again at least three more times this year. my new theory is that kobe is gunning for wilt's record. with nothing really else to play for this year, and the fact that the lakers are far from being a good team again, i think kobe knows that the only way to seal his NBA legacy is to break the immortal record. it's the only thing that can keep a sorry sonuvabitch like kobe going. in any case, i'm definitely going to be following the lakers on television much more closely than i have so far this season.

1.20.2006

lessons learned from antonio davis

i'm assuming that you've all heard about antonio davis charging into the stands to protect his wife. now in addition to being suspended for five games (which is too much if you ask me), it turns out that it was his wife who may have started the whole thing. i found some video of the incident on WLS-TV in chicago (click on the "sports" link to see the video) by way of deadspin. well, the fan's going to sue, and the league gets another black, albeit silly, black eye. anyways, here's what we've learned so far.

1) a lot of these fan incidents seem to happen in chicago don't they? between william ligue, steve bartman, the dude who stole chad kreuter's hat, and the guy who charged the mound on randy myers, i'm beginning to think that chicago fans may be just as bad as philly fans.

2) most important, we didn't learn anything about charging into the stands and race or anything. the most important thing that i think we learned is that if you're a professional athlete, there's no reason to get married. i mean here's poor antonio davis, a well respected nba veteran, who's just doing his job and trying to do the right thing by protecting his wife, and it turns out because she can't help but be a jackass, gets him suspended for five games. the whole situation could have been avoided if ms. davis hadn't had decided that because her husband makes a lot of money, she's allowed to tell other people what to do. can you imagine the thorough whipping for antonio that she must be at home? antonio, if you're listening take some unsolicitied advice from me and call a divorce lawyer.

1.19.2006

random football stuff

it's been a while, but i need to make the official announcement that fredo kicked my ass in this year's football pick 'em contest. i don't even know what the final score was but he beat me handily in the points department. in the won-lost department, i think we ended up a little closer. this of course is all relatively speaking because overall, we sucked in football this year. it was never more evident that this past weekend when we went to vegas. the two games that seemed like money in the bank killed us. i mean just killed us. here's what we learned this past weekend.

1) when most of the people in the sportsbook are cheering the same way you are cheering, then you know that you're in trouble.

2) peyton manning is on his way to becoming dan marino. 3-6 in the playoffs, never beat florida when he was at tennesee. i also found out today that of the five losses he had in high school, three of them were in the state playoffs. actually, i take the dan marino stuff back, because his teammates liked him. i'm sure that many of you have heard that he threw his offensive line under the bus when he pinned the loss on "problems with protection". all of the criticism about not being able to win a big game are completely founded. better yet, the criticism of him being a d-bag are founded as well. i've been looking for a picture of the look on manning's face when vanderjagt missed that field goal and it seemed like he was thinking, "hell, even if i did make it to the super bowl, i don't think i'd know what to do anyways." what a sorry sonuvabitch. thanks for losing that 150 bucks for me.

3) tom brady as great as he is, is just as responsible for the loss as kevin faulk and his fumbles or the officials for blowing the pass interference call. the interception in the end zone that went the other way was one of the worst decisions i've ever seen a quarterback make. i'm not saying he's done, but if we're gonna praise him for winning, then we need to blame him when the pat's lose. however, i still contend that the pat's should have won that game by 20. the truth is, the better team loss. anyone who says that they predicted that their second string running back would funble twice, that brady would not be able to complete a pass or hit an open wide receiver, and that vinateri would miss a crucial field goal is just plain full of crap and is a morally corrupt person who will go to hell for lying. tom brady owes me 50 bucks.

4) that steve smith is an out and out stud.

anyways, needless to say, it's been a brutal year for me and football. 51% is at least a winning record, but in vegas terms, that means i would have lost about 10% because of the rake. the only explanation that i can come up with for my poor performance is that i angered the football gods by proclaiming myself a football genius after my breakout performance last year. i've learned my lesson, and i seek penance from these gods. forgive me masters....my catharsis is complete.

anyways, i just thought i'd leave you with this from peter king's column on monday, which i just got around to reading today
I think this about the situation of Kansas City offensive coordinator Al Saunders, who has choreographed and called every offensive snap for the highest-scoring team in football over the last four years, and yet seems to be a candidate for only one of the open jobs, Oakland. If Saunders were black, Jesse Jackson would be holding rallies to rail against the injustice of him not being in demand as a head coach.
now peter king is entitled to his opinion, but i'm entitled to say that this comment is somewhat racist. comparing al saunder's not getting a job to 40+ years of systematic exclusion from the head coaching ranks is a bit of stretch if you ask me. perhaps saunders is deserving, but at least he's being considered as a real candidate by teams, unlike the ted cottrell's and the tim lewis' of the world who are only getting token interviews.

nfl coaching carousel update

i've got some things to say about the whole antonio davis thing, but there's just too much football to deal with that now. this will be a long very football intensive post. first things first, let's update you on the nfl coaching carousel and how black candidates are doing.

New Orleans: interviewed: donnie henderson (jets' d-coordinator), maurice carthon (browns' off. coordinator, mike sherman (former packers' coach) mike martz (former st. louis coach), and sean payton (cowboys' off. coordinator). payton was hired. henderson and carthon are black, the rest white.

Detroit: interviewed: dick jauron (detroit's def. coordinator), jim haslett (former saints' coach), russ grimm (o-line coach for pittsburgh), gary kubiak (denver's off. coordinator), carthon, tim lewis (giants' def. coordinator), rod marinelli (bucs d-line coach), and mike singletary (49ers' assistant head coach and super bowl shuffler). marinelli was hired and is white. singletary, carthon, and lewis.

St. Louis: interviewed: ron rivera (bear's def. coordinator), scott linehan (miami's off. coordinator), cam cameron (off. coordinator for the chargers), jim fassel (ravens' off. coordinator), ken whizenhunt (steelers' off. coordinator), tim lewis, and mike zimmer (dallas' def. coordinator). linehan got the job, and he is white. only lewis is black.

that brings our totals up to 40 interviews held for 7 positions, for 32.5% of candidates being african american. still no black coaches hired yet, unless you count herm edwards which you shouldn't. two more teams to go, the texans and the raiders...let's hope one of them can get over the fact that some of the candidates are black.

1.17.2006

nfl coaching carousel update

the jets just hired pats defensive coordinator eric mangini to be their head guy. obviously, mangini's strong ties to belichick helped. 10 years as an assistant, but this is his first year as a coordinator. menawhile guys like herm edwards and lovie smith have to toil for years and years as a coordinator before they even get a shot.

anyways, the other people that interviewed for the job: jet's d-cooridnator donnie henderson, jet's o-coordinator mike heimerdinger, jet's special teams coach mike westoff, former coaches, mike tice, jim haslett, and joe vitt, and giant's d coordinator tim lewis. henderson and lewis are black. although i should say that it is encouraging to see that more than one african american was interviewed for this job. however, according to the espn article, it looks like that mangini was the only one that was really considered. however, that's something we can't know for sure. anyways, let's take a look at how many african american candidates have been interviewed so far.

Kansas City - herm edwards was acquired via trade from the NY Jets, no other candidates were considered. edwards is african american.

Green Bay - interviewed: mike mccarthy (off. coordinator for the niners), tim lewis, maurice carthon (off. coordinator for the browns), sean payton (off. coordinator for the cowboys), wade phillips (def. coordinator for the chargers), ron rivera (def. coordinator for the bears), and jim bates (former def. coordinator for the packers). of the 7 candidates interviewed 2 were african-american (carthon and lewis). mccarthy is white.

Minnesota - interviewed: ted cottrell (former def. coordinator for the vikings), brad childress (off. coordinator for the eagles), al saunders (off coordinator for the chiefs), jim caldwell (ass. head coach and qb coach for the colts). of the 4 candidates, 2 were african-american (cottrell, caldwell). childress is white.

NY Jets - interviewed: henderson, heimerdinger, mangini, westoff, mike tice, jim haslett, and joe vitt, lewis. of the 8 candidates, 2 were african-american (henderson and lewis). mangini is white.

totals so far - 4 head coaching positions, 20 interviews held, 7 with african americans for a 35% clip. one african american coach hired so far.

what does this all mean? well, so far it looks like the nfl is interviewing more african americans than just the token one minority candidate that the league mandates. however, so far, only one has been hired, and even so, that one is complicated by the fact that there really wasn't a search process for the job, so on the hiring front, there's still seemingly a lot of ground to make up before we can call the situation improving, especially when all of the same african americans are interviewing for the same jobs and none of them are getting jobs. and especially when white coaches with lesser experiences are getting those jobs. we'll keep you updated as more coaches get hired.

p.s. eff peyton manning. he cost me a bundle this weekend.

1.13.2006

off to the most perfect place on earth



we 're staying at the a new place this time, the brokeback hotel and casino. i hope that the cocktail waitres...er servers are gonna be great. anyways, i'm sure that i'll have plenty of stories to blog about when i get back. wish us luck.

1.11.2006

the NFL coaching carousel

it looks like the green bay packers are about to hire their new head coach. they're going with the offensive genius behind the high-powered-second-to-last-place-49ers, mike mccarthy. of the 9 available coaching vacancies, 3 of them have been filled. herm edwards moving form the jets to replaced the retiring dick vermeil and brad childress taking over the boat luvin' vikings. in any case, so far, only one of the vacant head positions has been filled by an african-american. and even that should be somewhat qualified since he was a already a head coach for another team.

in looking at the candidates for the other positions, it seems that none of the leading candidates are black. although each list has at least one person since the NFL mandates that teams interview a person of color for head coaching positions. of course, that's become a sham. the detroit lions have taken it to a new level in calling to interview linebacking legend mike singletary for their coaching post. so instead of just calling in a token black person to interview, they're actually using their token black interview on a well known figure to give themselves some good PR on this front. especially galling when you consider they didn't even consider a black coach when they decided to hire mariucci.

anyways, the mccarthy thing really gets my goat, cuz this is someone that really doesn't have anything to show for his time as an assistant. meanwhile, ted cottrell, who was interviewed for the vikings post, had his failure to get the job magnified by the fact that childress fired him from his post of defensive coordinator of the vikes. this is the same childress who ran a great jets defense, the same childress who helped turnaround the vikings season, and somehow some loser like mccarthy can get a head coaching job no problem. anyways, i'll keep you updated on the fortunes of the black coaching candidates as i hear about them. like i said, from what i can tell, none of the leading candidates are black, so it looks like in a year when 20% of the coaching positions in the league are available, 0% will go to black coaches. way to go NFL!

bonus race/sports link! chuck klosterman wrote an incredibly astute racial analysis of adam morrison of gonzaga and why whitey wants so badly to have another larry bird. you should check it out for sure.

1.10.2006

espn bestows power to forgive sins to carson palmer



maybe i'm being a grammar nazi here, but i really think that the word "absolve" is not appropriate here. cuz really, if carson palmer really had those kind of powers, don't you think he would have used them to open up holes in the steeler's d-line?

1.09.2006

good one espn.com!

i saw this on espn.com this evening and got a nice giggle out of it.



the question should be can you name 25 college women's basketball players? i tried and this is what i came up with.

sheryl swoopes - texas tech
rebecca lobo - uconn
diana tarausi - uconn
latasha byears - depaul
kim williams - depaul
mfon udoka - depaul
jennifer azzi - stanford
tamika catchings - tennesee

and that's it. notice that three of the players are from my alma mater, depaul university. my point is not that women's sports suck, but that despite all the claims of the popularity of women's sport catching up with men's is just not true. i mean, i'm a guy who follows all sports. i basically read the entirety of four sports websites everyday, and for some reason, i can only remember a handful of names from the one of the most popular women's sport in the US.

sorry women's sports, i tried, but i still just don't care.

if anyone else wants to play this game, feel free to see if you can add to this list without looking it up on the internet. and we'll see how many names i can recognize. my guess is that at most i'll recognize maybe another 3 or 4.

uncon-"vince"-d

this post is probably a few days late, but like i said, i'm turning over a new leaf and going to blog as much as possible. anyways, rose bowl hero vince young announced that he was going to enter the draft yesterday. and as high as his stock has been since the rose bowl, i don't blame him. sure he could've stayed another year and win the heisman, but the risk of career ending injury is much higher than the reward of a multi-million dollar contract. but either way, whoever gets vince young, and it's looking like the homeless saints is screwed. let me lay out a few reasons why vince young will fail in the NFL.

1) no one, not even the greatest running quarterback of all time, michael vick, can make their bread and butter in the NFL as a runing quarterback. the element of the scramble is a nice complement to a good passing game, but there aren't any qb's who primarily run. the best package is the elway type, who has a canon for an arm and is mobile enough to turn what would be coverage sacks or passes thrown away into 6 yard gains. granted i think that vince young will be able to gain yards when needed with his legs, but not enough to sustain a super bowl contending team

2) in the nfl, defensive players know how to tackle. during the rose bowl, how many of usc yards came after first contact. i'm willing to bet at least 40 percent. not to take away anything from vince's amazing bowl performance, but once he gets to the big leagues, faster and better tackling defensive lineman and linebackers are going to knock his head into next week. his size (6'5") and his strength are what got him through college. however, in the pros, his size becomes a weakness in terms of being able to be brought down. pros know how to tackle the tall guy. they also know how to tackle receivers after 6 yard outs, which is something that USC couldn't do.

3) i don't know about his deep ball. you just have to be able to hit the bomb in the pros. i'm not saying you have to be able to chuck it like michael vick, but that's the dimension that makes vick an effective qb. he can throw deep plus run. vince has yet to show me his touch on the deep ball, or even the intermediate ball.

4) he's black. just kidding.

again, i'm not trying to take anything away from young. he played like a champ when it counted and his texas team can now go down as one of the undeateds. however, i just think all this talk about taking him over reggie bush, who is the runing back of his generation is ridiculous.

i know, this is generic sports blogging, but i need to warm up before i get to better sociologically relevant blogging.

1.08.2006

new year's resolution

hello blog reader,

many of you may have noticed that i've realy been slacking these past few months in the blogging department. i don't know what to tell you except sometimes i wish that someone would pay me to blog so that i could devote more time to it. i've missed a host of important issues this fall, and all i can do is just tell you that i'm too dammed busy with my own stuff sometimes. however, as we begin yet another year of pointless existence, i promise to try and be better about providing you content...well at least, i promise to try and better about providing you links to other people's content. here's to 2006 and i'll put up my first post tomorrow. have a great year a-holes.

the ragin' asian.