Did Hell Freeze Over …………..I Must’ve Missed Something

Well it’s the early hours of Sunday morning and I’m surfing the net to see what’s taken place on the sporting landscape by way of the results as it relates to certain events . My day was spent in the company of one of my buddies as I accompanied him to watch his son participate in a karate contest. The event itself was a spectacle to watch, as there were kids of all ages competing . Think ‘The Karate Kid’ but with more of today’s attitude. In the end my buddy’s son didn’t make it beyond the first round of the competition. But his effort was a gallant one and I commended him on that. He in return promised that he’d do better the next time. And who am I , not to take him at his word ?

University of South Florida  coach  ,  Jim   Leavitt  celebrates  with  one of  his   players   Sam  Barrington after  their   surprise  victory  over    Florida State  , played at  the  Seminoles   home  venue   of  Doak  Campbell  Stadium in Tallahasse ,  Florida.   The unranked  USF Bulls  would  go  on  to  defeat  the Seminoles  17-7  in  a  well  earned   victory.    picture  appears courtesy of   ap/photo/ Phil Coale  ....................
University of South Florida coach , Jim Leavitt celebrates with one of his players Sam Barrington after their surprise victory over Florida State , played at the Seminoles home venue of Doak Campbell Stadium in Tallahasse , Florida. The unranked USF Bulls would go on to defeat the Seminoles 17-7 in a well earned victory. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Phil Coale ....................

In so far as the day’s events panned out. In college football we saw a couple of upsets. Not that some weren’t expected. But the one that came as a complete surprise to me , was the defeat of FSU Seminoles at the hands of another instate team in the guise of the USF Bulls . The USF Bulls you might say ? Well in the Big East they’re a team that’s seemingly now on the rise and look for not only acceptance but also respect. Well South Florida’s totally unexpected but yet exhilerating defeat of the Seminoles 17-7 in Tallahassee , has got tongues wagging on the Bulls’ main campus in Tampa. What this win will do for USF’s program can’t be fully quantified. But one can expect that there’ll be a great deal of talk about the loss and why it happened. I for one think that on the day not only was this Jim Leavitt coached team ready . But their desire to win , was simply greater than that of the Bobby Bowden coached Seminoles. Wherein , a loss of this measure hasn’t been felt within Talllahassee, as it relates to one of the lesser programs within the state of Florida. The loss has to be a profound embarrassment for not only Bobby Bowden. But also for the Florida State Seminoles’ football program.

Bobby  Bowden ,left,  greets  his  counterpart   Jim  Leavitt   after  the  collegiate  football  game   played   between  their  respective  teams.      picture  appears courtesy  of  ap/photo /  Phil  Coale  ..................
Bobby Bowden ,left, greets his counterpart Jim Leavitt after the collegiate football game played between their respective teams. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo / Phil Coale ..................

It’d be an understatement to claim that this program has regressed. Inasmuch , as Bowden is considered to be a great coach and the respect which he’s brought to the Seminoles’ program during his tenure. It must now be stated that for all sense purpose the game has now passed Bowden by. He may well be the figure head to the Noles’ fans. But as a coach in recent years , even with him having named a successor in Jimbo Fisher . The program if anything has taken several steps backwards. It now meanders between average and bearly consistent by way of the football now being played. Especially at their home venue of Doak Campbell Stadium in Tallahasee, Florida. Long thought of a bastion of college football pre-eminence. For all sense and purpose the stadium and the fans are no longer viewed as a factor when it comes to intimidation.

Noles' running  back Ty Jones  is surrounded  by  Bull  defensive   players  as  he   attempts  attain  some  yardage  in  the third  quater.      picture  appears   courtesy  of ap/photo/  Phil Coale  .................
Noles' running back Ty Jones is surrounded by Bull defensive players as he attempts attain some yardage in the third quater. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Phil Coale .................

The problems for the Seminoles on Saturday were far reaching. And it stemmed from their ineffectiveness on both sides of the ball when it came to their play. So much so, that USF were able to have their way with this team as they forced several fumbles and made the Noles’ quarterback , Christian Ponder fear for his life, each time he was in possession of the ball. He was harrassed throughout the game and his offensive line offered about as much protection for him as a wet piece of two-ply tissue paper would be to someone with a cold. He was sacked 5 times during the game and to add further to his own personal tales of woes. Ponder rushed for total net loss of minus 11 yards on six rushing attempts.

 Florida  State wide  receiver  Rod  Owens (86)  fumbles  the ball  after  he's  hit  by  Bulls  defensive  player    Jerome  Murphy   ..................
Florida State wide receiver Rod Owens (86) fumbles the ball after he's hit by Bulls defensive player Jerome Murphy ..................

If fault is to be apportioned for this loss then a great deal of it has to be placed at Bobby Bowden’s door and that of his coaching staff. There’s no drive or determination coming from the team , much less there being any at all coming from Bowden, himself. He lauds over all that he surveys , still thinking that not much has changed from the glory days when one viewed Bowden and the program with a great deal of respect. And for the eighteenth ranked Noles , we’re liable to see them slip further down the rankings after this loss and in essence out of the national picture in terms of a major bowl appearance.

 Delbert Alavarado   (25)  makes  a   successful  last  ditch  attempt    to  tackle    Florida  State's Greg  Reid   on   his   kick  off  return  which    but  for   the attempt   by   Alvarado  would've   resulted   in a  touchdown.     Alvarado's   play  highlighted some  of  the bad  luck  that   befell the    Seminoles.        picture appears  courtesy    of  ap/photo/ Phil  Coale  ...................................
Delbert Alavarado (25) makes a successful last ditch attempt to tackle Florida State's Greg Reid on his kick off return which but for the attempt by Alvarado would've resulted in a touchdown. Alvarado's play highlighted some of the bad luck that befell the Seminoles. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Phil Coale ...................................

For coach Jim Leavitt and his USF Bulls’ program this gives them something to build on. No one essentially thought that the’d be able to go up to Doak Campbell Stadium and seemingly make the impossible happen . But they did and they’re to be commended for it and the effort put forth. They played with such zeal that it was hard to discern which was the ranked team and which one was not. It was if Bowden’s players were like several deers caught in headlights as they attempted to cross the road in-front of oncoming traffic. As the game progressed and with the team not being able to make a play of any substance. The nightmare was about to become a reality for the Florida State Seminoles.

Vitali Klitschko , right,  starts  to  dictate  and  take the   fight  to  his  challenger   Chris  Arreola  .   picture appears  courtesy of  ap/photo/  Mark J Terrill   ............................
Vitali Klitschko , right, starts to dictate and take the fight to his challenger Chris Arreola . picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Mark J Terrill ............................

It’s not often that I’m made to eat my words concerning a boxing match. I think of myself as someone who’s knowledgeable enough about the sport. And certainly this wasn’t the case surrounding the events that took place at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. On Saturday night WBC heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko (38-2, 37 KO’s) successfully defended his title against the challenger Chris Arreola (27-1, 24 KO’s) in a bout that was scheduled for twelve rounds.

Vitali  Klitschko  throws a  right  hand  that  catches his  opponent  Chris Arreola  squarely  on  the   side  of  his   head    in the fifth   round of  their  heavyweight title   bout  at  the   Staples   Center  in Los  Angeles  , California.   The fight  would   end  with    Arreola   being  unable   to   come  out   for  the   beginning  of  the  eleventh   round. Arreola's  corner    'threw in  the   towel'  at the   end  of  the  tenth  round  to   save  their   fighter   further  punishment.  The  fight  was  ajudged  a  TKO  in Klitschko's  favor.   picture appears  courtesy  of  getty images/  Jacb  de  Golish   .......................
Vitali Klitschko throws a right hand that catches his opponent Chris Arreola squarely on the side of his head in the fifth round of their heavyweight title bout at the Staples Center in Los Angeles , California. The fight would end with Arreola being unable to come out for the beginning of the eleventh round. Arreola's corner 'threw in the towel' at the end of the tenth round to save their fighter further punishment. The fight was ajudged a TKO in Klitschko's favor. picture appears courtesy of getty images/ Jacb de Golish .......................

I looked at this fight as a chance for the challenger in the form of Arreola to live up to the hype. But unfortunately the only thing that the challenger managed to live up to. Was the fact that always a tin can then you’re liable to be pounded like one. The effort put forth by Chris Arreola was about as banal as they come. He showed little if anything of a fighter who wanted to defeat the incumbent champion. His performance was lackluster and devoid of anything worth mentioning.

And at a time when the sport and in particular the heavyweight division yearns for someone to come along and show some moxy. Unfortunately for the fans in attendance at the Staples Center and those watching at home or from whatever else venue that they chose. Arreola forgot the presence of mind to bring his moxy into the ring and put it on display against Vitali Klitschko. The champion for his part put up a clinical display of boxing. Albeit , that it wasn’t necesssarily artistic in its portrayal. He dissected his opponent with ease using his jabs and a flurry of upper cuts as and when needed.

Arreola throws  a  left  against  Klitschko   during  their   bout  .   picture appearas  courtesy  of   getty  images /  Jacob  de Golish  .....................
Arreola throws a left against Klitschko during their bout . picture appearas courtesy of getty images / Jacob de Golish .....................

On appearance this bout had the basis of being an action packed event. Both boxers were known for their punching power. And the chances were that we were going to see that on display from both. I’d mentioned this in passing to an acquaintance of mine. Chris aka sportshchump (http://sportschump.net) as he’s known around the blogosphere. I’d remarked to him ,that this bout would in effect either be a barnburner with a great deal of action. Or it’d end up being a bore and complete snoozefest ! . Unfortunately my prognostication proved to be true , because what action that took place in pursuance of this title fight , only came from the champion, Vitiali Klitschko.

WBC  heavyweight  champion   Vitali  Klitschko   leaves the  ring   having  successfully  defended  his  title  against  Chris  Arreola  .        picture appears  courtesy  of   ap/photo/  Jae C . Hong  ..................
WBC heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko leaves the ring having successfully defended his title against Chris Arreola . picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Jae C . Hong ..................

The bout itself lasted ten rounds . Wherein, the champion bewildered his opponent by simply jabbing away at his torso. In particular wit a flurry of body shots and occasionally taking aim at Arreola’s often open guard -making use of his head as a pinata. As alluded to earlier , the challenger offered up little in the way of resistance or determination. And this lackluster performance in all honesty does nothing to legitimize the health of the heavyweight scene. Vitali Klitschko can’t be blamed for his opponent’s lack of will or presence of mind to fight. I place this squarely on the shoulders of the promoters and the sancitioning body for this particular event. Dan Goossen ,as the promoter and the World Boxing Council (WBC) have once again shown us why the sport is on a downward slide into oblivion. It won’t be long before a sport such as dwarf tossing will outstrip the sport of boxing in terms of its popularity. One can surmise that they believed Arreola to be the #1 challenger for Klitschko’s title. But in all honesty this bout was hastily put together, merely to avail the promoter and sanctioning body a way of making untold millions in terms of selling the broadcast rights of the bout worldwide. Had they really sought some real credibility in making a desired match. Then they’d have gone about their job with a great deal more diligence.

Arreola  of  Riverside, Calif.,  seen  here at  the   postfight    new  conference   offers  very  little   of  an   explanation  by way  of hs  lackluster  performance  in  his   title   challenge  against  Viitali   Klitschko   for  his  WBC  heavyweight  crown  .       picture appears  courtesy  of  ap/photo / Jae  C   Hong   ................................
Arreola of Riverside, Calif., seen here at the postfight new conference offers very little of an explanation by way of his lackluster performance in his title challenge against Viitali Klitschko for his WBC heavyweight crown . picture appears courtesy of ap/photo / Jae C Hong ................................

Two sporting events that took place on the same day. In both cases , each in their own way failed to live up to expectation. Merely because one of the participants in each event didn’t all have have the stomach to be competitive. Nor did they have much to offer by way of an apology to their fans. Hell can’t have frozen over , so what did I actually miss here ?

NB : Should you at all be interested in seeing my original article concerning this bout and my prognosis on it all. Then just click on the text link provided below.

Someone Has Got To Clean House ….So Why Not This Guy ?

Author: tophatal ...........

Brit ex-pat living C Florida . Now working with a consultancy firm in the field of corporate governance on the international front , concerning economic policies . Also covering the area of finance , banking, international banking. An MBA graduate from the (LSE) and UCL (London) , M&A (mergers & acquisitions), economics , risk management & assessment . Martial artist (tae-kwondo, karate, savate , muy-thai) & an vowed sports ' fan , sports' junkie. Served in armed forces British ... Royal Marines . Taught unarmed combat to members of the military and also competed in tournaments prior to joining the Royal Marines . Also an avid motorcycle junkie & free running enthusiast . Tech geek and computer repair technician. Entertainment: Musical tastes _ reggae, r&b, soul, hip-hop, rap , jazz, classical. Film genres , Preferably thrillers , crime dramas Hobbies ..... reading biographies & anything by John Grisham Just a lil' something to make me feel comfortable ! Tophatal

6 thoughts on “Did Hell Freeze Over …………..I Must’ve Missed Something”

  1. The USF-FSU game was possibly the best game I watched all year.

    And I did end up putting 20 on Arreola. I wasn’t able to watch the fight but I imagine it went as you suggested.

    Arreola was not able to knock him out early and in the end, it cost him.

    Like

    1. Chris Humpherys

      Well the ‘noles got was coming to them in a big way. They didn’t take the game seriously to begin with. And their ‘ya-hoo fans’ were so discourteous to the Bulls’ fans in attendance. That I’m glad that things turned out the way that it did.

      As for Arreola , he a was a friggin’ disappointment. He didn’t come to fight. He merely stood there and took an almighty as_ whupping. My dead grandmother would’ve put up more a fight than he did.

      Alan Parkins

      Like

  2. bobbygee

    You’re right Bowden does need to go. But Jimbo Fisher as his replacement doesn’t mean that it’ll be a step in the right direction. Afterall he’s in effect the proxy head coach in all but name. And they’re still languishing in the depths of mediocrity and ineptitude.

    Alan Parkins

    Like

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