And clearly we’re about to agree, to disagree ….
Call me naïve but all of the hype over the teams at the start of the season doesn’t bear out the claims being made by the pundits and fans alike . BCS / College Football anointed USC (Trojans) the number one ranked team in the nation, only to see that program fall from grace faster than a speeding bullet shot up into the air , and with that projectile swiftly falling . The fact that Lane Kiffin tried to play down his team’s woes as being nothing more than complacency and inexperience , clearly indicates that the coach , himself , didn’t believe the “ bull “ he was readily extolling , as he tries to hide behind the disappointment of what might have been .
The Trojans were 7-5 in overall play and 5-4 within conference ( Pac 12) , in essence when you consider this team was highly-touted as the Pac 12 champions, as well as a bonafide contender for the BCS national title . Well the Trojans’ Bowl aspirations will be down to one of second-tiered Bowl games , and in this case , it will be the Hyundai , sponsored , Sun Bowl , in El Paso , Texas on the 31st December ,2012, when the USC (Trojans ) take on Georgia Tech (Yellow-jackets) . A nondescript game , with a $2 million payout for the winning program, on the day . And we wonder why the BCS in conjunction and the major conferences , have been so slow in dragging their feet and adopting a clear cut formatted playoff system that would be equitable for all? With these multi-million dollar payouts at thee bowl games , it’s better to “ keep the gravy train” rolling along as it is , rather than further having divide the spoils amongst many of the lesser programs who aspire to be playing amongst the big boys of the FBS . As Ohio State Buckeyes’ President , Dr E Gordon Gee once stated “ we’ve no need for programs who can’t play at a higher level and pay for the privilege of doing so “ . Need we be reminded of what was going on at the Buckeyes’ program between 2009 through to 2010, under then , head football coach , Jim Tressel ?
Let’s just say , the stench to be found on the college’s campus , could only be outdone by lies and deceit countenanced by Tressel , his coaching staff and numerous players with the football program at the time. Pay to play , pimp by ride , and I’ll one-up you with , I’ve got a bag a weed , a major drug dealer and gambler handling bets for the players , and a car dealer offering “free rides” (cars) for players to roll around in , with some of the finest ” bling-bling” and “honey dips” (females) available for sexual gratification. Yet somehow this all escaped the watchful eye of AD Gene Smith and the Athletics Department’s compliance officers ? Stevie Wonder could’ve detected that rancorous stench and told you , what , when , why and how ? Buckeyes’ Nation , more like, Fuck You Nation ! And if anyone believes that the installment of Urban Meyer , as the coach of the football program , will bring about a renewed search , for academic and athletic excellence , then , think again ! .
This past weekend within the NFL ,there were a number of results that may well have left you in sheer apoplexy . First off the bat , I will reiterate , there are no do-overs in the NFL , and the Arizona Cardinals cannot , and will not be allowed a second bite of the apple , after their 58-0 shellacking at the hands of the Seattle Seahawks . I am English , and results such as this, normally takes place during a rugby match and not , in an NFL game ! At what point was Cardinals’ head coach Ken Whisenhunt going to press his secondary into making a serious attempt at playing some defense ? Last , I looked , Russell Wilson was not the second coming of Joe Montana , and Marshawn Lynch could not be mistaken for Barry Sanders . Yet somehow, the performances of the Seahawks’ offensive players in this game were somewhat reminiscent of the Forty-Niners at their very best . But let’s take a step back , this is the Arizona Cardinals we are talking about, a franchise that hasn’t been relevant since Kurt Warner was leading them to regular season victories with a great deal of aplomb , before choosing to ride off into the sunset and into the arms of a loving family . Do you get the feeling that the Cardinals’ front office < might not now contemplate giving Warner a call , to gauge his interest in returning to the NFL ? It’s not as if Kevin Kolb , John Skelton and Ryan Lindley , have been able to do that much at the quarterback position for the Arizona Cardinals this season. The trio are amongst the worst performing players at the position within the NFC , and not far off being amongst the worst of a terrible bunch within the NFL as a whole !
I know it’s not Groundhog Day , but the frequency of the losses for the Kansas City Chiefs , have become repetitive and damn monotonous . In the aftermath of the Jovan Belcher “ tragedy” , a rallying cry was heard and a victory came out of an unnecessary tragedy . That being said, it’s back to the ineptitude we’ve seen exhibited with ever-growing frequency from a team that apparently has lost its will to win , and whose coaching staff now seems to be out of their depth.
Sunday afternoon , the Chiefs were the guests of the Cleveland Browns , in a game that would have significant meaning for the Browns , as they sought to keep within striking distance of the Cincinnati Bengals , and avoid ending the season , as bottom feeder within the AFC North . Brandon Weeden was not asked to do a great deal , other than to be efficient , and not put his team at risk during the game. Cleveland came away with a 30-7 victory , which improves their record to 5-8 , while dropping the hapless Kansas City Chiefs to a mediocre 2-11, with only three games left , in order to end their schedule and not further subject their fans to this misery.
For team that was said to have a great deal of of aspiration for the postseason , the Houston Texans have proven to as elusive as they are thrilling . Everything about this team at the start of the season , suggested that they were ready to “ hit the big time” . Well, take into account their first postseason berth , and their displays in 2011 , all that was being asked of Gary Kubiak’s players on Monday night , would be , that they go out, and acquit themselves well . Instead , the Texans ran into the New England Patriots and their buzz-saw offense that simply laid waste to an apathetic and woefully inept Texans’ secondary , that on the day looked lackluster and did in fact play lethargically . I’m not a heavy gambler , but it would be a cold day in hell , before you would be able to entice me to bet on the Houston Texans in any type of a meaningful wager ! This team and franchise has no “ real body work” behind it, other than a exceptionally explosive offense , that plays well during the regular season , but seems to come up short , when it matters most .
We are all aware of what Tom Brady has been able to do over the course of his career , especially during the regular season . Monday , was not necessarily the exception to the rule , but it damn well near came close to it , as the quarterback put on an exhilarating aerial display , that was complemented by a solid rushing game led by Stevan Ridley , Danny Woodhead , Shane Vereen ,and Brandon Bolden making the Patriots’ offense was relentless on the ground. And as much we have seen the defense of the AFC East franchise play poorly during this season , we were able to finally see a game from where all the parts seem to come together . A secondary that on average , this season, has been giving up 376 yards and 21.1 points per game through the first thirteen games of 2012. Given the fact that Patriots’ head coach, Bill Belichick and defensive coordinator, Matt Patricia , simply put together a scheme and sets that stymied the Texans’ offense from the beginning to the end of the four quarters . And to see Matt Schaub , perhaps in his worst game of 2012 , it was enough an indicator , to suggest the quarterback is just capable of putting up great numbers , and little else beyond that. Schaub , has yet to win a playoff game in his career , and this is where I believe far too many people have bought into the idiocy that this is the team to beat in the AFC . Well , Monday night , was a clear indication that the Texans are not as good as advertised , because fans only saw what they wanted to see , rather than what was clearly there to be seen
Now while it appears the final verdict has been rendered , with presiding adjudicator , Paul Tagliabue’s decision to overturn Roger Goodell’s original suspensions of Wil Smith , Scott Fujita , Anthony Hargrove and Jonathan Vilma . Tagliabue’s verdict does not excuse the player’s actions but he believes that the preponderance of evidence gathered shows the actions of the New Orleans Saints in this “ Bounty Scandal “ was in fact initiated by the actions of Sean Payton , Gregg Williams , Joe Vitt and countenanced by GM Micky Loomis . This remains a damning indictment of the NFL franchise but of anything , it also indicates that the commissioner far exceeded his authority .
Goodell, has always maintained his actions followed the “letter of the law”. But at no time has the commissioner acted accordingly in his deliberations and interviews with the alleged defendants when they met in private. Much , much to the dismay of the fans , the public and those amongst the legal establishment , the actions of Roger Goodell were not tempered by any sound judgment and the impartiality sought from someone who has to assess the evidence based on the facts as they are known to be . And no matter what concessions that were made by the NFLPA (Players’ Union) , as it relates to their collective bargaining agreement with the NFL hierarchy , at times the commissioner’s actions bordered upon being those of individual who simply sought to make a scapegoat of the players , rather than the Saints’ franchise as a whole . Paul Tagliabue may well be seen as a reprieve for the four players , but in no way it should it be viewed that way. They are guilty , it is just that their guilt is mitigated by overwhelming proof that without the direct orders of the coaches , much of what we now know to have taken place would not have been executed without the “ say so” and implicit orders of Micky Loomis , Sean Payton and the head coach’s subordinates , Gregg Williams and Joe Vitt. Which now begs the question , how is it that Roger Goodell could not have come to this conclusion and have rendered a decision that would have been amenable to all of the parties concerned , and wherein a monetary fine that could have, and should been levied against the four players , rather than the continued idiocy we have witnessed ? Tagliabue, upheld the commissioner’s original suspensions of Payton , Vitt , Loomis and Williams , without making any recommendations that any further action be taken . Should we now consider the matter closed ? Well , that would be dependent upon whether or you believe Paul Tagliabue’s decision to be fair and impartial . From my own perspective , even with the union’s original decision to challenge the former commissioner’s impartiality to preside over such a matter , we did in fact get to see how a legal mind does work, when you have someone with a legal background presiding over such a case .
Appears Courtesy of the Washington Post
By Mark Maske , Washington Post
Former NFL commissioner Paul Tagliabue on Tuesday overturned the suspensions of four current and former New Orleans Saints players and declined to fine them for their roles in the team’s alleged bounty scandal .
Tagliabue, appointed by Commissioner Roger Goodell to hear the players’ appeals, agreed that New Orleans conducted a program that paid players for hits that injured opponents, and that three Saints — linebacker Jonathan Vilma and defensive linemen Will Smith and Anthony Hargrove — were guilty of conduct detrimental to pro football.
But because “this entire case has been contaminated by the coaches and others in the Saints organization,” Tagliabue wrote that he would not impose fines either.
A fourth player, linebacker Scott Fujita, did not engage in conduct detrimental to the NFL, Tagliabue concluded in his 22-page decision.
“I affirm Commissioner Goodell’s factual findings as to the four players,” Tagliabue wrote in his 22-page ruling. “I conclude that Hargrove, Smith and Vilma — but not Fujita — engaged in ‘conduct detrimental to the integrity of, and public confidence in, the game of professional football.’
“I fully considered but ultimately rejected reducing the suspensions to fines of varying degrees for Hargrove, Smith and Vilma,” Tagliabue added.
None of the players has missed a game because of suspensions. They have been allowed to play while appeals are pending, though Fujita is on injured reserve and Hargrove is not with a team.
A league official called Tagliabue’s ruling the end of the process under the collective bargaining agreement between the NFL and its players’ union.
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Paul Tagliabue , whose legal background and experience as a corporate trial attorney and managing senior partner with law firm , Covington & Burling LLC , of which he was also a founding partner , gave him greater insight than any , that could have been found with his NFL successor , Roger Goodell. What this now further does in quite possibly lowering the public’s perception of the NFL , has to be tempered by one’s own opinion of Roger Goodell’s , as the hierarchy’s commissioner . There’s no denying that he has , and will continue to make decisions that far outreach the parameters of his responsibilities, and many of the verdicts rendered will be looked upon as being asinine in a number of cases , whereas in others, they will actually make some common sense . But in all honesty, in recent years, Roger Goodell’s decision-making has more to do with sheer buffoonery , rather than being sound in its reasoning ! He has been in large part, a simpleton on appearance , been someone who cannot be succinct or for that matter , and as an individual , his communicative skills border on that of someone, who has a considerably hard time of making sense of the English language, orally , as well as, in the written word ! .Your opinion on this ?
Picture gallery .
What thoughts if any , do you have with regard to the NFL season so far , and which teams do you now feel have more to worry about with regard to their ongoing precarious plight ? And is there any one ball club that you feel over the past three weeks has stood out as a legitimate contender for the Superbowl , above everyone else ? Also are you in agreement with this verdict rendered by Paul Tagliabue and do you see it as an end to this long episode concerning the New Orleans Saints and Roger Goodell ? Simply chime in with your thoughts on this and anything else you feel may well be pertinent to the subject matter .
Picture and slide show details below .
(1) Head Coach Lane Kiffin of the USC Trojans greets senior, Matt Barkley (7) before the game against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on November 24, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. USC would go on to lose the game 23-13 to the Fighting Irish. Harry How / Getty Images North America …
(2) Everett Golson (5) of the Notre Dame (Fighting Irish) runs an option as he is pursued by Leonard Williams (94) of the USC Trojans at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on November 24, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. Getty Images / Harry How …
(3) New England Patriots wide receiver Donte’ Stallworth (19) catches a pass in front of Houston Texans defensive back Brandon Harris (26) before running it in for a touchdown during the third quarter of an NFL football game in Foxborough, Mass., Monday, Dec. 10, 2012. The Patriots would go on to defeat the Texans 42-14 . AP Photo/Elise Amendola ….
(4) Houston Texans quarterback Matt Schaub (8) and head coach Gary Kubiak talk during the second quarter of an NFL football game against the New England Patriots in Foxborough, Mass., Monday, Dec. 10, 2012. AP Photo/Steven Senne …
(5) New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) celebrates his 37-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Brandon Lloyd (85) during the first quarter of an NFL football game against the Houston Texans in Foxborough, Mass., Monday, Dec. 10, 2012. AP Photo/Elise Amendola ….
(6) (6) NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, left , is seen here alongside Paul Tagliabue , who at one time held the position as commissioner before choosing to step down and to be succeeded by Goodell. The incumbent was a protege` of Tagliabue who returned to private practice with the DC based law firm, Covington & Burling LLC . Roger Goodell , having recused himself from presiding over the appeals of the four Saints’ players embroiled in the “bounty scandal ” appealed to Paul Tagliabue to preside over that hearing . Paul Tagliabue’s decision was to overturn the originally rendered verdict of Roger Goodell , but he also cited that the players’ “actions while egregious “ they did not bear the greatest responsibility of the ensuing actions they were said to be involved in. Tagliabue pointed to the fact that an environment of contempt , deceit and greed was fostered and engineered by head coach Sean Payton, along with the compliance of Joe Vitt , former assistant , Gregg Williams , and general manager , Micky Loomis . Picture appears courtesy of CBS Sports @ all rights reserved copyrighted material …
(7) Saints’ defensive player Jonathan Vilma is seen here arriving at NFL headquarters in New York City , to answer questions by the league’s investigators into the Saints’ bounty scandal . Vilma refused to answer any of the questions asked, citing the league’s lack of evidence, and the very fact much of the evidence gathered was ” hearsay” with no tangible proof of his direct involvement . The player’s legal representation was provided by the NFLPA (Players’ Union) at the request of NFLPA Executive Director , DeMaurice Smith . Courtesy of the Los Angeles Times/ Alex Ortega ….
If at all interested , do take time to participate in the polls indicated .
Hot chic pic of the day , Latoya Ophilia-Bledsoe .