You can’t tell me enough about what I already know .

You can’t tell me enough about what I already know .

Week seven of the NFL came and went in almost a blur and once again as in previous weeks the same level of mediocrity remains within the league . A number of the results were not too surprising with the San Francisco 49ers being on the wrong side of a lopsided result, but yet, some apathetic individuals still believe the Niners are a ten to eleven-game winning team at this stage of the season. The team has become ill-disciplined lacking in leadership but above all, the coaching staff and head coach Jim Harbaugh have lost the confidence and the connection between themselves and the players.


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Though the Forty Niners were on the road in their visit Sports Authority Stadium to play the Denver Broncos in Denver , Colorado , were a complete embarrassment to the NFC West based franchise, who now find themselves behind the hard-charging Arizona Cardinals (5-1) who might just be the surprise team within the NFCthis season.

If the problems of the San Francisco 49ers are not transparent to those who doubt that they have issues , then clearly these individuals are nowhere as knowledgeable as they believe themselves to be. At 4-3 it is hard to envisage how the Forty Niners will win at least six of their remaining nine games, given the lethargy shown over their last five games (3-2), where they are currently on a one-game losing streak . With the team on a bye in week eight , their next game will not be until the 2nd November when they host divisional rivals the St Louis Rams . The game should see Colin Kaepernick and his teammates prevail , but a loss would surely put a dent in their season’s ambitions .

Dennis Allen might well have been the first coaching casualty of the NFL season it is my belief Rex Ryan is now hanging on by his fingernails as the New York Jets (1-6) have become mournfully inept and routinely inconsistent under the head coach’s tendencies during their season in 2014. Though they fought gamely against a less than impressive New England Patriots’ team in a Thursday night contest , the game can be best summed up by the lack of creativity shown by the Jets and the very fact that New England was not at its very best. If there is one thing which could also signify the Jets’ season, then it would have to be the playof Geno Smith , the team’s quarterback. Smith’s if anything in week seven, among AFC starting quarterbacks was one of the worst performing starters and when adjudged against the rest of the NFL , one could suggest the player was beyond woefully inept.

Jets’ GM John Idzik is likely to stick with Rex Ryan for the immediate future, rather than firing the beleaguered head coach. Ryan for his part has become somber and somehow unable to explain the reasons why his team has been performing so poorly. In 2013 and 2014 the New York Jets’ draft classes have been not only poor , but the players chosen have not lived up to expectations and now with the acquisition of Percy Harvin , I doubt whether or not the fortunes of this team is likely to change.

When the New York Jets host divisional rivals(AFC East) the Buffalo Bills in week eight, we are likely find out a great deal about the mindset of Rex Ryan’s players as they try to resurrect their season .

There has been little to suggest that the New York Jets were even capable of winning the AFC East and from a defensive or offensive standpoint, the team leaves a great deal to be desired . Rex Ryan’s future I now believe will be judged on a game-by-game basis , and loss to the Bills will seriously impact the decision that could be made by the front office as to his job security.

I do not believe there is or can be, a more inept division than the NFC South this season, with the play of the quartet of teams in question, being far from perfect . The Carolina Panthers (3-3), leaders> of the division have been less than impressive through the six games of their schedule . The Panthers coming off a rather embarrassing loss to the Green Bay Packers are not the dominant team seen in 2013 , where they won their division with consummate ease and then entered the postseason as one of the NFC’s best teams.

Rivera head coach of the Carolina Panthers has seen starting quarterback Cam Newton remain sidelined for much of the season due to a recurring injury which has led to the Panthers’ passing game to be rather indifferent .Newton’s performance in the game against the Packers was less than stellar but the real loss I believe was the organization to allow Steve Smith to leave the franchise and join the Baltimore Ravens in March of 2014 . Smith remains the Panthers’ all-time receiving yards and receptions’ leader , far surpassing his nearest rival in the category. Since joining the Ravens the veteran has simply been able to show that he can still be productive while aiding his team to very good start to their season within the AFC North .

John Harbaugh and the Baltimore Ravens will be looking for build on their lead within the division when they take on the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati , Ohio , this upcoming Sunday. For the Bengals and Marvin Lewis this is a “must-win game” , if they are to have any real chance of making the postseason. Joe Flacco has the full complement of offensive weaponry to now make an assault another attempt at a deep playoff run. Something the franchise clearly needs this season , if it is to somehow rid itself of the less than welcomed image after their handling of the Ray Rice debacle .

Baseball’s ‘ Fall Classic now has the two final teams seeking to be this season’s World Series’ champions . Who would have guessed at the start of the season the last two teams standing would be the Kansas City Royals and the San Francisco Giants ? This has been the year where just about everything went right for the Royals after almost three decades of being in the wilderness . Opposing managers , Ned Yost of the Royals and Bruce Bochy of the Giants could very well be considered favored candidates as Managers of the Year within the AL and NL , given the success of their teams . If the postseason has taught us anything this year , it has been the divisional champions were simply paper tigers and the teams who won the AL and NL Pennants were deserving of their accolades.

When James Shields takes to the mound at Kauffmann Stadium in Kansas City , Missouri to face the Giants’ Madison Bumgarner , the long await for the Royals’ fans will have ended as the ball-club seeks to win their first title since 1985. I would like to think this will be series, likely to be one of the more memorable World Series’ contests of recent seasons ! Yet , I somehow get the feeling, this might be a contest or should I say a series of games , where one team is likely to perform admirably, while the other simply falls apart, because of the pressure . There can be no denying the Kansas City Royals’ postseason foray has been one of the great stories in recent MLB postseason history , as they remain unbeaten , outplaying their opponents, while not being placed under any great pressure.

As this World Series’ schedule unfolds , it will be interesting to see how the two opposing teams handle the pressure . What we already know and it is , the San Francisco Giants will be seeking to add their own piece of history to the game , seeking to win their third title in the past five seasons. Bruce Bochy has been front and center, managing the teams in question , showing the guile and managerial acumen not often seen by many of his contemporaries .

The College Football season has turned into a barnstormer and burner, with coaching reputations being torn asunder. The angst now seen and shown by fans of the Florida Gators cannot be underscored, as the team has another terrible season , with their being calls for not only the ouster of Wil Muschamp , but also his decapitation . Somehow, I wasn’t aware the ire of the fans were so wrought with anger . Needless to say, Muschamp’s tenure with the program is about to come to an abrupt end once the schedule comes to a close. There is no way AD Jeremy Foley can justify his being retained for another season , given the team’s poor showing in the SEC and their play over the course of this season .

If only to emphasize how bad the season has been for the Gators , consider their showing in their most recent game against the Mizzou (Missouri) Tigers , where just about everything one could imagine going wrong for Florida happened , as the events of game unfolded . I doubt the team has been this incompetent under a coaching Muschamp coaching staff in quite a while . Florida should consider itself considerably lucky the margin of defeat was simply twenty-nine points as the Mizzou Tigers could quite easily have scored fifty against a team, lost in its own ineptitude .

A bye-week for the Florida Gators will provide no respite as the speculation continues to grow concerning a likely successor for Wil Muschamp. Dan Mullen has let it be known , he has no interest in the position or leaving his current program the Mississippi State (Bulldogs) the number one ranked team in the country . Florida’s next scheduled game will pit them against Georgia Bulldogs (6-1) . Safe to say, a win will be utmost on the minds of the Gators’ players and the coachinfg staff , as their season and standing continues to spiral downwards.

The spiraling idiocy of the Florida State (Seminoles) and their handling of the ongoing issues concerning their Heisman Trophy winning quarterback Jameis Winston is a case of damage control handling by simply playing with a stick of dynamite or an unpinned hand grenade . At every juncture, the school’s handling has been a template of what not to do. AD Stan Wilcox remains indifferent and clearly out of touch with reality. Now Jimbo Fisher has suggested the latest allegations of Winston signing some 1000 pieces of memorabilia is unfounded and without foundation . The matter has been substantiated with the memorabilia company stating Winston’s signature was authentic . If the player is said to have financially profited from this exercise then clearly he has violated an NCAA edict , but it appears the head coach , Jimbo Fisher is jumping out on a limb coming to the player’s defense . Given the fact, there has been a pattern of behavior with Winston and his behavioral issue, with he and his lawyers are now willing to settle with a victim of a sexual assault and his being charged with theft from a state wide known grocery store chain , it does leave many wondering, what else can go wrong with the quarterback and that is also in light of his recent suspension.

For the Seminoles they remain unbeaten this season , but have now slipped down the rankings to number two in the nation. In their most recent game Florida State overcame a feisty Notre Dame team winning the contest 31-27 . The contest was one , which in many ways has indicated the struggles of the Seminoles this season. Jimbo Fisher’s players have become complacent albeit the coaching staff might suggest otherwise .

There is no denying Jameis Winston is an extremely talented player , but an NFL team isn’t likely to take a flier on him given his recent issues and it does not bode well for his standing for the NFL Draft of 2015 where he is likely to be seen as consensus top-ten first round pick . From my own standpoint, I believe he is likely to meet the same fate as his predecessor of Heisman winners, when Johnny Manziel slipped down the pecking order of quarterback candidates , as he was drafted by the Cleveland Browns . If anything , it was an emphatic slap in the face for the player and many of his protagonists , who felt he would be a top-five pick and the first quarterback taken in last season’s NFL Draft.

The fate of the Seminoles’ season will lay in what they are to achieve between now and the end of the regular season schedule . before the panelists go about making their decisions in the the new formatted playoff system to determine the national champions. Controversial as this may be , it still will not provide a satisfactory outcome for those who prefer the old flawed system or something widely different , with the preference still favoring programs of the major conferences , specifically those who made up the BCS system . Next up for the Seminoles will be a game on the 30th October , when they will face Louisville . From thereon-in, Florida State’s fate lays in their own hands. Are they good enough to make a successful defense of their national title ? That would be dependent upon the various views now part of the whole conversation concerning the topic.

We are now a week away before the opening night schedule of the NBA season with the defending champions the San Antonio Spurs looking to make a successful defense of the title they won with a great deal of ease “downing “ the overrated Miami Heat . With the core of their team back and their newly crowned Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard looking to make this season more emphatic than last year in which the Spurs were so dominant .

With San Antonio returning with a roster intact with a few additions , the real story in the NBA has been the departure of LeBron James from the Miami Heat to rejoin the Cleveland Cavaliers the franchise where James first made his name and where the legend began. The four-time League MVP will be joined also by Kevin Love in a newly revamped roster which will also have point guard Kyrie Irving also a part of the team’s lineup coached by rookie head coach David Blatt. Cleveland is now seen as the predetermined favorites within the Eastern Conference this season to make it to the NBA Finals . I believe the Cavaliers to be a very good team but I am not so sure they are actually good enough to win the conference title outright . Granted , when you have a player of LeBron James’ caliber , things are made a great deal easier , but other than Shawn Marion , Mike Miller and James Jones, there is no one else on the roster with postseason experience, without taking into account the postseason coaching experience of Blatt’s coaching staff .

The Cavaliers will begin their regular season schedule against the New York Knicks at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio, on the 29th October, 2014. For LeBron it will him give a chance to renew an old rivalry against Carmelo Anthony as well as the Knicks . If their past regular season contests are anything to go by, then these two teams should put on quite a show for the fans in attendance that evening.

Gregg Popovich will lead the Spurs as they begin the defense of their title when they take on the Phoenix Suns , as the Suns seek to make a renewed attempt at resurrecting their fortunes . Suns’ head coach Jeff Hornacek and his coaching staff will use this contest as an initial gauge in their process of improving. Last season the Phoenix Suns were less than competitive within their division and the Western Conference . If Hornacek can instill the discipline he showed as a player with the Utah Jazz and he Phoenix Suns , then the Suns could be well on the way to having a meaningful season in the NBA, but I believe it will remain a work in progress for this team .



Picture gallery .

During the past week what event do you believe highlighted as a news’ story has grabbed your attention and piqued your interest ? Also which story do you believe has been the most overblown in terms of reporting ? Chime in with your thoughts by way of a comment as you see fit .


Picture and slideshow gallery.

(1) Ned Yost(3) of the Kansas City Royals looks on during batting practice before Game One of the 2014 World Series at Kauffman Stadium on October 21, 2014 in Kansas City, Missouri. The Royals would go on to lose game one 7-1 to the Giants in first of the seven-games series in the 2014 World Series . Getty Images / Elsa Martinez …

(2) Quarterback Colin Kaepernick (7) of the San Francisco 49ers walks in the tunnel with teammates as he prepares to face the Denver Broncos in a game at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on October 19 , 2014 in Denver, Colorado. Kapernick on the Broncos would go on to losing the game to Denver 42-17 . Getty Images / Justin Edmonds …

(3) Quarterback Colin Kaepernick (7) of the San Francisco 49ers is sacked in the third quarter by defensive end Malik Jackson (97) of the Denver Broncos as cornerback Bradley Roby (29) comes in at the end of the play at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on October 19, 2014 in Denver, Colorado. Getty Images / Justin Edmonds …

(4) New York Jets’ GM John Idzik left is seen here with the team head coach Rex Ryan . The Jets are off to disastrous start to their season with a 1-6 mark , firmly rooting the team at the bottom of the AFC East without a chance of making the postseason . AP Photo / Mark Thomas ..

(5) Missouri quarterback Maty Mauk (7) scrambles out of the pocket as Florida defensive back Keanu Neal (42) moves in during the first half of an NCAA college football game in Gainesville, Fla., Saturday, Oct. 18, 2014. AP Photo/John Raoux

(6) Missouri coach Gary Pinkel , left, and Florida head coach Wil Muschamp chat at midfield prior to the NCAA game between Missouri and Florida on the 18th October , 2014 ,. AP Photo / John Raoux ….

(7) Jameis Winston (5) , quarterback of Florida State is seen here on the sidelines with head coach Jimbo Fisher during a game . The embattled player is having a torrid time both on and off the field, as his reputation has taken a battering , as well as the program’s own problems with their handling of Winston’s behavioral issues . AP Photo / Carter Burris … ….

(8) Cleveland Cavaliers’ head coach David Blatt ,left , is seen here with the team’s general manager David Griffin at a formal press conference to introduce Blatt as the franchise’s new head coach . The Cavaliers embark on a new season with a revamped roster headed by their acquisitions of LeBron James , James Jones , Mike Miller and Kevin Love . Getty Images / Keith Jones .. ….

(9) Jeff Hornacek shows off his shot as he is introduced as he is introduced as the Phoenix Suns’ new head basketball coach during an NBA basketball news conference, Tuesday, May 28, 2013, in Phoenix. AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin




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It is what it is …………

It is what it is …………

Well the sports’ environment at present has taken a back seat to the NCAA Tournament , with the event itself , having provided the fans with a number of stunning upsets , while there have been some that were not totally unexpected . With the number one ranked Florida Gators having now made their way to the ‘Sweet Sixteen ‘ , the road in some respects does now seem all but clear , for Billy Donovan and his team to capture the program’s third national title in the past eight seasons . Were the Gators’ head coach able to manage that feat , it would certainly make him the school’s most successful coach in terms of national titles won , beating out the likes of Urban Meyer and Steve Spurrier .


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Slideshow .

From my own perspective , I believe Donovan the equal of both of the aforementioned coaches , albeit that, Meyer and Spurrier left Florida to further their careers , elsewhere . In the case of Urban Meyer, his departure and subsequent criticism of his former employers and the program he coached to two BCS titles , may well have more to do with his egotistical character and the level of criticism aimed at him , with the failure of Tim Tebow to become a resounding success in the NFL . A great deal of that criticism is more than justified , when you simply bear in mind that Tebow’s collegiate career while stellar , at the next level of his evolution , his game simply did not materialize into anything more than that of a moderately average quarterback , who could barely read defensive tendencies , much less make a pass attempt in excess of fifteen yards or more , without their being a tendency of an interception or the pass simply falling short of its target , but there were , the vast majority of less than intelligent Gators’ fans, still singing Tim Tebow’s praises as a player. With his career now coming to an abrupt end , he has now been hired by cable sports’ programming network ESPN to provide fans with his insight into the Collegiate Football and the games , where he will be covering . One can only wish Tebow, all the success possible in his new endeavor , in the hope that he is likely to be more successful in his new vocation.

With a number of programs now having fallen by the wayside, in this particular NCAA Tournament, by contrast , at this point last season , things in some respects were somewhat similar. Florida for its part, have more than justified that national number one ranking , and proof of that , come by way of their regular season schedule and their run through the SEC (Southeast Conference) ,where the team went undefeated , a first for conference play, within the Southeastern Conference. Leading the way for Florida, in terms of the team’s play , have been Casey Prather , Patric Young , Michael Frazier and Scottie Wilbekin , but it has truly been a collective team effort , along with that of Billy Donovan and the coaching acumen shown by his coaching staff , which has taken them this far and proven their season-long dominance this year.

Through their first two games of this tournament, Florida has not truly been tested , with their first round contest against Albany NY being nothing more than a cakewalk , with their 67-55 defeat of that team , before facing an even less sterner test in taking down the Pittsburgh (Panthers) with another somewhat lopsided victory 61-45 . The Gators’ path to the ‘Elite Eight’ in the NCAA Tournament, will see them having to overcome the UCLA Bruins , in what is likely to be the best game scheduled during the ‘Sweet Sixteen’ .

Of the games , still to be played in the round of the Sweet Sixteen , beyond the featured contest, which I believe to be the best at this stage of the tournament. There are games between Iowa State versus Connecticut , Tennessee and Michigan , Louisville (Cardinals) and Kentucky , Baylor and Wisconsin , Arizona and San Diego State , finally Dayton versus Stanford . All great match-ups befitting a tournament, that now lures shall we say, degenerate gamblers into wagering billions of dollars, into the most lucrative sports’ event, for the gaming industry in North America .

Rick Pitino , as the head coach of the Louisville Cardinals, when he faces off against an old foe and nemesis in John Calipari , in a contest , of well-versed coaches , that will be a match of wits . What might also make this match-up also intriguing, with both coaches, having reached the pinnacle of collegiate coaching in winning a national title. Pitino, will now seek to take down a program , where, he was once a head coach and a well-respected one at that.

There are few coaches as well-respected as Tom Izzo within Collegiate Basketball and while one can be critical of the game at this level . It has to be said, that with the continued controversy of tainted programs , abuses of privileges and the ongoing issues of recruitment violations . Rarely, has Izzo’s tenure at Michigan St (Spartans) raised any suspicion of the program being mired, in any major impropriety. However, that is not to suggest, that Spartans athletics’ program has been pristine and above-board. Collegiate Athletics has become embroiled and awash, with far too much money , that the temptation to do something amiss, has become even more tempting than ever before. At the same time, the continued incompetency of the NCAA does not cover the distrust that the public has not only the entire landscape of college sports but also the hierarchical structure of the that particular body , under its current President , Mark Emmert , who came to the position, carrying a great deal of baggage of his own, concerning a number of improprieties and a lack communicative and administrative skills .

Izzo and the Spartans, while seeking to make their way to the Elite Eight, are not likely to have an easy time when they face the Virginia (Cavaliers) . Cavaliers’ head coach, Tony Bennett will undoubtedly want to pull off the upset , in taking the program this deep into the quarter-finals of the tournament for the very first time ever. The outcome of this contest, between Michigan and Tennessee , will definitely be predicated upon the offensive prowess shown by both teams and the coaching acumen of the respective staffs.

This NCAA Tournament has certainly lived up to expectations so far and the contests have provided the fans with a great deal more than most would have expected .

The big news within the NBA over the past eight days , has been the New York Knicks’ acquisition of Phil Jackson to head up the franchise’s Basketball Operations and being entirely responsible for all player personnel decisions. Jackson , himself, has been quick to point out, that the level of the play by the current roster has bordered on being inadequate and lacking the basic fundamentals , that the team itself , simply looks like a group of individuals at play on a high school playground. Subsequent to that statement by the Knicks’ front office executive , the players have responded in kind rolling off eight victories in their last ten games , perhaps reminding Jackson that they are capable of playing as a cohesive unit. As to what this might suggest as to the coaching strategies of Mike Woodson and his coaching staff , may well spell doom and his departure from the franchise at the end of this season. Woodson, might not be a proponent of the “Triangle Offense” and Phil Jackson has suggested that the scheme need not be adhered to, by the team, but , what he would like to see, is a great deal more resilience and tenacity from the players.

The New York Knicks’ continued malaise over the past seven seasons at least , has been brought on by the negligence of team owner , James Dolan and the litany of general managers heading up the front office during that time-span. Anyone who would try to suggest that under Isiah Thomas’ tenure , or that of Dave Checketts , Ernie Grunfeld , Scott Layden and in some respects Donnie Walsh , have in some way brought about some semblance of competitiveness to the franchise, need only look at the Knicks’ overall record from 1999 to 2013 and the number of playoff appearances made . In large part, the organization has spent more time acquiring nondescript talent and simply overpaying for the players assembled to represent the team during that time. It is certainly something, that will clearly have to be addressed by Phil Jackson and the staff that he will likely assemble to assist him in that stead, as he seeks to build a roster that will be viewed as a perennial contender, rather than being seen as an also-ran.

A playoff berth is now beyond the New York Knicks’ reach for this season, but in large part several players on the roster will be playing for their long-term future and livelihood with the franchise , in light of Jackson’s wish to revamp this roster. The team (29-41) at present , is lying in ninth place , within the Eastern Conference and three games out from that final berth , which is currently held by the Atlanta Hawks(31-37) as of 23rd March , 2014.

As if to further emphasize the numerous reasons why the Knicks have been woefully inept , consider the fact that at home, they are amongst the worst teams in the entire NBA , never mind the fact that they are simply unable to close out games, but yet the asinine analysis provided by on air commentators would have you believe to the contrary. Sunday’s six-point loss (106-100) at home at Madison Square Gardens in New York City, New York, to the Cleveland Cavaliers , is a damning indictment of not only the poor play of the New York Knicks , but also how damn awful , the Eastern Conference just happens to be overall , in terms of the poor play.

Inconsistency has now become the norm for the New York Knicks , while the air-headed print and television media within the New York market tend to be enraptured by Phil Jackson’s arrival , what they seem to be forgetting is actually how bad this team just happens to be and that is even with Carmelo Anthony having to carry his teammates on his shoulders for the majority of the season. One can choose to spin the tale of the New York Knicks for this season and then suggest that next year all of the events of 2013 , will be forgotten, because Phil Jackson , by then, will have begun to work miracles. Let’s get something clear, Phil can only work with the tools given him and what he has been provided with at this juncture , are a bag of nuts , bolts, and rusty tools, in seeking to get the job done . As to what transpires, in the coming months of this off-season, remains to be seen. It will be interesting to see whether or not, Jackson can indeed revamp an impoverished franchise, with them regaining some semblance of respectability.



Picture gallery .

The events of the NCAA Tournament, as they have unfolded, which result has been of the greatest surprise to you ? Which program do you now believe to be in the driver’s seat, with the easiest task of making it to the Final Four and then going on to win the Men’s NCAA title outright ? With Phil Jackson’s introduction as the new Head of Basketball Operations for the New York Knicks , do you believe his task will be an easy one to turn things around for the franchise and how much time in your estimation, will it take for him to make the Knicks relevant and competitive ? Simply take time to leave a comment, as you see fit and thank you for the ongoing support of this site, as it is greatly appreciated !


Picture and slideshow gallery details below .


Florida guard Scottie Wilbekin, bottom, gets past Pittsburgh forward Lamar Patterson for a shot during the second half in a third-round game in the NCAA college basketball tournament in Orlando, Fla., Saturday, March 22, 2014. Florida won 61-45 . AP Photo/John Raoux ….

(2) Florida coach Billy Donovan gestures during the second half in a third-round game in the NCAA college basketball tournament against Pittsburgh, Saturday, March 22, 2014, in Orlando, Fla. AP Photo/John Raoux…

(3) Florida guard Scottie Wilbekin (5) and center Patric Young (4) talk on the court during the second half in a second-round game against Albany in the NCAA college basketball tournament against Albany, Thursday, March 20, 2014, in Orlando, Fla. AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack ….

(4) Louisville coach Rick Pitino , right, yells at guard Russ Smith (2) during the second half in a third-round game in the NCAA college basketball tournament against Saint Louis , Saturday, March 22, 2014, in Orlando, Fla. AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack ….

(5) Kentucky head coach John Calipari works from the sideline against Wichita State during the first half of a third-round game of the NCAA college basketball tournament Sunday, March 23, 2014, in St. Louis. A highly rated Wichita State team that seemingly could not match the intensity shown by the Wildcats during this contest, which ended in disappointment for the Shockers. AP Photo/Charlie Riedel ……..

(6) Kentucky guard Aaron Harrison (2) passes the ball as Wichita State guard Fred VanVleet (23) defends during the first half of a third-round game of the NCAA college basketball tournament Sunday, March 23, 2014, in St. Louis. AP Photo/Jeff Roberson …..

(7) Tony Bennett head coach of the Virginia Cavaliers . Bennett’s team face the MSU Spartans on Friday , with the victor guaranteed a berth in the Elite Eight as the prize . AP Photo / Rafael Gomez …..

(8) Michigan State’s Tom Izzo whose long and proud coaching resume’ indicates an impressive track record . Getty Images / Keith Turner …..

(9) NEW YORK, NY – MARCH 23: Jarrett Jack (1) of the Cleveland Cavaliers shoots against the New York Knicks during a game at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images …

(10) New York Knicks’ Carmelo Anthony talks with New York Knicks’ head coach Mike Woodson during the second half of the NBA basketball game against the Cleveland Cavaliers at Madison Square Garden, Sunday, March 23, 2014, in New York. The Cavaliers defeated the Knicks 106-100 . .AP Photo /Adrian Miller …..

(11) New York Knicks’ executive Phil Jackson is seen here, inlaid, team head coach Mike Woodson’s ,whose tenure with the Knicks’ franchise now seems more perilous than ever , with the team not completely responding to his coach style, in spite of a recent impressive run of eight consecutive victories . Yet, the team’s home record remains one of the worst in the entire NBA and one of the numerous reasons why they have fallen out of contention within the Eastern Conference this season. It seems highly unlikely that Woodson will be returning to coach the team next season , with their being no guarantee whatsoever, from the front office , even if there have been some reassuring words coming from unconfirmed sources within the hierarchical structure of the franchise. AP Photo / Lou Mason …..


College Basketball & NBA related pieces :

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It’s that time of the year again , and things are said be right with the world ….

You can talk a good game but can you play one ?

Stick to what you know and not what you’re told is the truth

Full steam ahead



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It’s that time of the year again , and things are said be right with the world ….

It’s that time of the year again , and things are said be right with the world ….

It’s that time of the year again, where sports reaches a fever pitch , as several things are about to transpire. The NCAA Tournament for Men’s and Women’s Basketball , will begin to determine a Collegiate Champion. With billionaire businessman Warren Buffett offering a $1 billion prize to anyone predicting the champion , as well as the correct breakdown of the sixty-four team bracket field, it adds a great deal more of an incentive for some of the most ardent fans of the game.


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Slideshow .

With Billy Donovan and the Florida Gators being ranked number one in the nation in the polls , the team has also garnered a number one seeding in the NCAA Tournament , whereby they will be in the Southern Region . The team will not kick off their tournament schedule, until, the 20th March , when they will face the winner of the game between Albany and Mount St Mary’s , a contest due to be played on Tuesday , 18th March . The tournament itself , might just be one of the most open in recent years , with a number of programs thought to be in with a serious chance of being this season’s national champion. I have long been an admirer of Mike Krzyzewski and the Duke (Blue Devils) , but their path to the Sweet Sixteen as a number three seed in the Midwest Region , will not be an easy one to traverse. Yet, if the team can exhibit much of the form they have shown throughout the season up to this point, then there is no reason to believe why the Blue Devils cannot mount a serious challenge as Krzyzewski seeks to win his fifth national title.

I may well be wrong in my assumption, but I believe Billy Donovan to be the most under-appreciated coaches in all of college sports, when it comes to a coach who has won multiple national titles in their specific arena . Back to back titles in 2006 and 2007 , cemented Donovan’s legacy with the Gators’ program and placed in my mind , in the upper echelons of Men’s Collegiate Basketball coaches ! ! Donovan’s players, were simply good enough this season , to “sweep through ” the SEC (Southeastern Conference) , going an astonishing 18-0 in conference play and rounding out their record , with a 32-2 finish overall .

Duke will begin their sojourn in the NCAA Tournament, with a first round game against Mercer , on Friday, 21st March , where there will be a slew of games scheduled to be played on the day. For players, such as Jabari Parker , Rodney Hood , Quinn Cook and Rasheed Sulaimon , this will provide them the opportunity to display their skills beyond a national audience , as there will be a slew of NBA coaches and front office executives observing not only these players but also the entire talent that will be on display throughout this tournament , with the likelihood , with one of those athletes thought to be good enough not only to be the number one draft pick in the upcoming NBA Draft , but someone around whom, a franchise can be built around . Last season’s top pick , Anthony Bennett of the Cleveland Cavaliers , seems to be struggling to come into his own , having not been able to show the collegiate form which the front office believed could resurrect their fortunes .

From my own standpoint, the NBA in terms of its NBA Draft, might just be the “biggest hit or miss” in terms of assessing talent, next to the idiocy presided over and deemed as the MLB Draft ! A number one pick made there , is unlikely to see any Big League playing time through the first two years of their professional playing career, unless their skills are already highly polished , but yet such players are afforded record signing bonuses , before having stepped onto a baseball field or donning that team’s uniform . Yet it would be remiss to suggest that MLB is the only such area , where this is something that has become a practice , because we have witnessed this also within the NBA and the NFL , in spite of their now being rookie contracts , offered to first round players on a sliding scale , as determined by one’s position of being picked in that first round.

The NBA season itself, has become all the more heightened, as teams now face the final stretch of the regular season, with their not being more than seventeen games left on the schedule, for playoff aspirants to play themselves into contention . Meanwhile , the New York Knicks have made perhaps their biggest acquisition in the past five years, when they made it public, that Phil Jackson would be returning to the franchise where he made a name for himself has a player , winning an NBA title as a member of the 1973 championship winning team . Jackson returns in the capacity of Head of Basketball Operations , overseeing the Player Personnel decisions for the franchise, in which GM Steve Mills will be directly answerable to Jackson, in the franchise’s hierarchical structure . The move itself has to be seen as the last act of a truly desperate franchise that over the past five seasons , has lost its way , edge of competitiveness and simply became a “laughing stock” around the NBA .

The hire of Phil Jackson might not now be enough to deter the departure of the New York Knicks’ best player, Carmelo Anthony , who since being acquired by the franchise as a free agent from the Denver Nuggets , has been perhaps the sole reason to watch the team during that time-span . A prevailing thought in some circles , was that a bold move had to be made by the franchise , as they sought to gain some semblance of respectability. A prevailing thought in some circles , was that a bold move had to be made by the franchise , as they sought to gain some semblance of respectability. What now happens, concerning Anthony’s future with the New York Knicks , will be predicated upon by the overtures made by Phil Jackson and his intent as he seeks to improve the team.

Coming off a 115-94 over the Milwaukee Bucks the team will then play host to the Eastern Conference’s best team in the Indiana Pacers . How the New York Knicks now acquit themselves between now and the end of the season , will allow Jackson a chance to gauge the players on the roster , and which he believes are superfluous to the Knicks’ needs.

In having lost twenty-one consecutive games , I don’t believe that you can be any more critical of a team than need be! The Philadelphia 76ers have been able to do that, without having broken sweat, in terms of the team’s continued .. ineptitude . Team owner, Joshua Harris and GM Stan Hinkie have presided over this mess without having offered the fans an explanation for the Sixers’ malaise. . A 90-99 loss to the Indiana Pacers at the Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indiana , Indianapolis , pushed the Sixers’ streak to its current mark, one which is likely to be increased, when the team hosts the Chicago Bulls , at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania , on Wednesday evening.

The Sixers’ Brett Brown , in his rookie season as a head coach , has been placed in an impossible position, where he and his coaching staff are being asked to coach and mold a team, that will continue to struggle over the remainder of the season. . Jason Richardson and Thaddeus Young are the most experienced players on the roster , with twelve and six years’ experience apiece, with the bulk of the players on the team , with no more than four years of NBA tenure. Leadership experience if any , is sorely missed and simply a bye product of an organization where there seems to have been no actual goals or priorities set , other than perhaps the level of mediocrity that might well have been possibly sought.

In the aftermath of what appears to be a seismic meltdown within the NFL , with several players being jettisoned by their respective teams as cap salary casualties . The question now becomes , how will those franchises now seek to make up for those losses, be it by way of the NFL Draft or themselves acquiring a free agent of their own choosing ? Merely speculating, as to how much better a team is likely to become , can only been seen as that and nothing else.

One of the more interesting stories to have come out of this off-season , seen as a precursor and lead-up to the NFL Draft , are teams seeking to position themselves in terms of the salary cap, simply making what on the face of it are decisions that make so obvious sense . To my astonishment , I found out that with the Chicago Bears having rid themselves of Julius Peppers one of the NFL’s leading defensive lineman . In the ensuing moves , they sought to make the team’s quarterback Jay Cutler the highest paid player in the NFL , in terms of the value of his contract , the contract’s length , also by way of a base and average salary , never mind the fact that he also becomes the highest paid player on the Bears’ roster . I can only surmise that Bears’ GM Phil Emery , under the advisement of team Chairman George McCaskey , who happens to be the son-in-law of the franchise’s late founder George Halas , believes Cutler, capable of leading the team to Superbowl. A six-year $126.7 million deal is preposterous for a player whose, playoff record and performances can be best described as mediocre.

How Cutler’s contract might be viewed around the NFL and amongst fans in general , can be best summed up with one of a number of two scenarios. The player is worth it, or Phil Emery and George McCaskey have lost complete touch with their senses or that they felt, that in placing their faith in player by offering him such a long-term contract , it best serves the long-term goals of the Bears as a franchise.

The Bears’ loss of Peppers, will be the Green Bay Packers’ gain , as the player’s arrival , immediately makes the Packers’ secondary a little more formidable and can only add to the likely productivity of that team , defensively. This all could come back to haunt the Bears , who meet their divisional rivals within the NFC North , twice over the course their divisional schedule and in what is said to be one of the most celebrated rivalries in NFL history. With the loss of Jared Allen , as the Minnesota Vikings sought to allow the defensive player to hit the free agency market , it now looks as if the franchise will to get into a rebuilding mode and transition . Beyond Allen’s departure, came the firing also of beleaguered head coach Leslie Frazier , who has subsequently been replaced by Mike Zimmer . The incumbent is likely to bring in, his own group of coaching assistants , as well as seeking to gauge the playing roster as it now stands. Vikings’ quarterback Christian Ponder’s tenure has not exactly been an encouraging one , with the player simply not being effective , often struggling to play consistently at a high level , while seeking to lead the team to victory .

Jared Allen is likely to sign with a team in due course , but the issue , will be about his contractual worth , given his time in the NFL , though still productive and seen as of one of the league’s top pass-rushers and defensive ends . There are said to be at least six teams interested in Allen’s services , but as of yet, no concrete offers have been made , but in all likelihood this has more to do with the player and his agent , Ken Harris weighing up offers and the one they perhaps feel , best serves Jared Allen and his long-term future .

Minnesota Vikings’ owner , Zygi Wilf may well be secure in the knowledge that the franchise will have a new state of the art venue for the Vikings to play in, as of the 2016 NFL regular season , with the stadium being built with a mixture of private and public financing . However, the window of opportunity for the franchise to win a Superbowl with current running back Adrian Peterson in tow , does appear to disappearing rather quickly. Peterson was the subject of a great deal of speculation , when it was said, that there was a great deal of uncertainty within the front office as to whether or not the player would be cut by the franchise, or retained. Now in the fourth year of a seven-year $96 million contract that was signed in 2012, Adrian Peterson is not due to become a free agent until 2018 , at which time his tenure in the NFL, he will be entering his twelfth year in the league. At which time, it is expected that the player may well have surpassed the league’s all-time career rushing yards’ mark of 8,355 held by Hall of Fame rusher Emmitt Smith . Only Stephen Jackson with 10678 yards leads Peterson amongst active running backs, in terms of career rushing yards.

The Minnesota Vikings’ last postseason appearance came in 2012 , as a wildcard entrant , where they fell short of their goals in succumbing to a lopsided 24-10 loss to the Green Bay Packers . It will be interesting to see what Mike Zimmer and Vikings’ GM Rick Spielman will seek to do in the build-up to the NFL Draft and with regard to the team’s needs also, by way of free agent acquisitions .

There has to a rhyme and a reason behind baseball’s madness and the MLB season , .which unofficially opens on the 22nd March , 2014, with two NL games , as part of a two-game series in Australia, when the Arizona Diamondbacks designated as the home team will entertain last season’s NL West divisional winner and losing NLCS combatant, the Los Angeles Dodgers . While, I have no bone of contention with regard to the league hierarchy seeking to have the game exposed to a greater global audience ! It does seem somewhat remiss, when you consider baseball’s growth domestically is on the decline, within the inner cities , particular amongst the major inner city suburbs. An even greater telling sign , has been the lack of participation in the game of young African-American youths and in some respects, among young male Caucasians. There remains a great deal of interest in the game at the Little League Level , with the Little League World Series drawing high ratings for the showcase domestically, as well as in the foreign markets where the event is televised .

Baseball has painted its image on a myth , that has not really changed , other than that of, how historians have seen to denote the game . In recent weeks we have seen the idiocy behind the claims of ESPN reporter Buster Olney seeking to suggest that because of a statement made by the granddaughter of Hall of Fame great Babe Ruth , that it was his intent to see the game of baseball fully integrated during his time as a player . Olney attributes this all because of Ruth’s apparent friendship with entertainer Bill “Bojangles” Robinson , who was an entertainer at Harlem’s famed Cotton Club. Now unless I am mistaken the era was still filled with a great deal of racism and it was something of a rarity to have an African-American in an all-white establishment , let alone Ruth’s on-field antics at a time when baseball had yet to be fully integrated, but yet we have a clown , such as Olney, trying to suggest that a renowned racial bigot, was in fact someone , who also had a close relationship with a Negro and that in-fact made him more decent and humane . Perhaps, if Buster Olney spent less time trying to wax on lyrically and actually deal in the facts , the game itself , would be better represented , in terms of its history, rather than it being filled with a number of falsehoods.

With the Boston Red Sox having won its eighth World Series title and third , in the past seven seasons . It has to be said, that there now seems to new-found level of confidence within the organization . Granted, the team saw a number of changes to their championship winning roster , with the departure of Jacoby Ellsbury , having joined the New York Yankees having not been able to obtain a renewed contract with his former team , Ellsbury becomes one of a select group of players that will have played for both of the game’s most fabled ball-clubs in the Red Sox and the Yankees .

For the New York Yankees this will be a season, in which we will be able to see whether or not, this team can rebound from much of the adversity that they faced last year . Off the field issues asides , with the Alex Rodriguez saga now put to rest , the team’s inability to stay healthy , along with a lack of productivity, in terms of their pitching and hitting , added to the complexity and woes of the ball-club , beyond Joe Girardi’s inability to get the Yankees’ players to play with any consistency for much of 2013.

New York will begin its regular season schedule on the 1st April against a the Houston Astros , with a three-game set at Minute Maid Park , in Houston Texas , against a ball-club that will be undoubtedly be looking to avert losing one hundred games for a third consecutive season , having achieved that feat in 2012 and 2013 , respectively. The New York Yankees’ fans will have the privilege of seeing the newly revamped team , in their first home series, when they face the Toronto Blue Jays at Yankees’ Stadium , beginning the 4th April March , in a three-game weekend series .

As the season unfolds, it will be interesting to see what transpires in comparison to the first month last season’s schedule and events that unfolded , leading to, in many respects, what was one of the most eventful years in recent baseball history.


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Picture gallery .

In light of the points raised within this article, what are your hopes with regard to the coming weeks, within the world sports ? Simply, leave a comment, as you see fit .

Picture and slideshow gallery details below .


(1) Billionaire , Warren Buffett , Chairman of Berkshire Hathaway , who has offered a $1 billion prize money to anyone successfully picking out the “prefect bracket” in this season’s Men’s NCAA Tournament , as well as , picking the outright winner as in the determining of a national champion . Pictured here with Buffett is Chris ‘Handles’ Franklin , a member of the Harlem Globetrotters . AP Photo/ NY Daily News / Nati Harnik …..

(2) Scottie Wilbekin of the Florida Gators’ Basketball team celebrates with teammates after the team’s 61-60 victory over the Kentucky (Wildcats) . Billy Donovan’s Gators are the number one ranked team in the nation , also seeded #1 in their regional grouping for the NCAA Tournament , where the program is highly favored to become this season’s national champion . AP Photo Everett Miles …………….

(3) Head coach Billy Donovan talks to Scottie Wilbekin (5) of the Florida Gators in the second half against the Minnesota Golden Gophers during the third round of the 2013 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament at The Frank Erwin Center on March 24 , 2013 in Austin, Texas. Getty Images North America / Stephen Dunn …..

(4) Duke’s Jabari Parker is seen here speaking with head coach Mike Krzyzewski during a one-on-one film session . The program is seeking to make a successful and deep run in the NCAA Tournament as Krzyzewksi seeks to win his fifth NCAA title as a head coach . Andrew Sherman / UPI ….

(5) New York Knicks’ team owner , James Dolan & Chairman of Madison Square Garden Entertainment Company Inc (MSE) , parent company of the NBA franchise, is seen here with Phil Jackson , who recently accepted the offer to become the Head of Basketball Operations and a SVP within the front office of the Knicks. Jackson will be in charge of all personnel decisions involving the team and the move is seen as a way of encouraging Carmelo Anthony to remain with the franchise , rather than opting out of his existing contract to test the “free agency market” . AP Photo / Anton Cutler ….

(6) Jay Cutler of the Chicago Bears is seen here on the sidelines of Soldier Field in Chicago, Illinois. The quarterback has signed a six-year $126.7 million contract that now makes him the highest paid quarterback and player in the NFL in terms of contract value and annual salary . All of this in spite of a somewhat anemic postseason career in the NFL since his entry into NFL , having been drafted by the Denver Broncos during the 2006 NFL Draft . AP Photo / Jason Marshall …….

(7) Jared Allen a Pro Bowl player with the Minnesota Vikings, having now being discarded by the franchise and having been their all-time sacks’ leader is now looking for a new team as a defensive end . Allen is looking for a long-term contract that is likely to reward him handsomely . Chris Ward / Getty Images ….

(8) World Series’ MVP , David Ortiz of the Boston Red Sox will be hoping that he and his teammates can make a successful defense of their World Series’ title won last season , when the Red Sox defeated the St Louis Cardinals with some ease. Ortiz’s career with the franchise and overall , quite possibly makes him a future Hall of Fame candidate . AP Photo / Alexander Hughes ….



tophatal ………….. 2014/03/19 02:15 PM

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NCAA Tournament schedule 18th March 2014


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2014 NFL Draft and mock draft

NFL transactions (March 2014)

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Highest paid NFL players contract value

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MLB news and press releases for the teams

MLB schedule 19th March , 2014

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Milestones this MLB season (Offense) : Hits , runs scored , home runs , RBI’s , Total bases

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Yaris  Sanchez/

The voluptuous Yaris Sanchez

Don’t believe the hype ……….

Don’t believe the hype

One of the seminal groups in all of music, but more so rap music, came out with a song that still resonates socially today, as it did two decades ago. Chuck D and Flava Flav , two of the founding members of the rap group Public Enemy are just as respected today, as when they first burst onto the scene over two decades ago with their socially conscious lyrics, which some suggested as being overtly racist . Take that with a pinch of salt, from a group of individuals, who at first thought that Rock-n-Roll was the Devil’s music. The song in question, by the Grammy nominated group was ‘Don’t Believe the Hype’ , delivering strong lyrics of defiance and of being socially relevant. Well today , in the world of sports , that means not being socially relevant , much less being involved. More so today, it is all about creating an image of being family friendly, in order to lure being wielding and deep pocketed corporate sponsors , broadcast networks and their billions of dollars . Nowhere, is that particular message more resonant , than within the NFL , NBA , MLB and Collegiate Athletics .


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Slideshow .

This season in the NFL , a great deal of the hype was made over the amazing start of both the Denver Broncos and Kansas City Chiefs . Two teams who came flying out of the starting gate, having rolled off seven straight victories apiece . By week seven in the league , the Broncos had fallen back to earth , having slipped up , when Peyton Manning as the ‘prodigal son’ , made his return to Lucas Oil Stadium , home to the Indianapolis Colts , where Manning and his teammates would succumb to his former team in a thoroughly entertaining game , as we witnessed the ongoing maturation process of Andrew Luck , the number one overall pick from the 2012 NFL Draft .

With their now being only one remaining unbeaten team in the NFL, as the 7-0 Kansas City Chiefs seek to keep their quest for a perfect regular season alive . All eyes will on Andy Reid’s rather surprising roster and their seeking to keep that record intact. From my own perspective , I felt with the departure of former general manager Scott Pioli , Matt Cassel , along with a number of players who proved to be unproductive , there was a chance that the Chiefs would be something of a surprise in 2013. Little did I realize, that they would now seen, as perhaps the best team in the NFL . Certainly, the traits were already there from last season , but what was most definitely needed , were the players to execute and coaching staff in place to get the players buying to into a proven message . Pioli’s successor , John Dorsey laid the foundations for that , with the hiring of Andy Reid and the acquisition of quarterback Alex Smith and some very shrewd off-season moves . On Sunday , the Chiefs will seek to further distance themselves from the rest of the AFC West , when they play host the Cleveland Browns at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City Missouri , in what should to be a very good AFC match-up .

If to suggest that things could not get any worse for a team now seeking not only redemption but also respectability , then what more can one say, about the now stagnant Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-6) , who tonight host the Carolina Panthers at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa , Florida ? This team has lost focus , heart , but overall there seems to be no leadership forthcoming from anyone on the roster or coaching staff . Greg Schiano’s demeanor at times has shown a lack of discipline , which seems to have been reflected a great deal in the Buccaneers’ lackluster displays throughout the season. And as usual, the Buccaneers’ fans continue to show more optimism than anything else . A loss tonight , and the franchise can start to think about 2014 and their likely draft status next year , beyond assessing the current roster .

I was never impressed with the hiring of hiring Greg Schiano in 2012 , in spite of his pedigree as a head coach with Rutgers . All of the bally hoo, surrounding the hire and the player acquisitions that came about , with GM Mark Dominik being viewed as a front office genius. Not much, by way of tangible success was borne out of the transactions or the overall play of the team during Schiano’s first year tenure. Take into the account, the idiocy , this preseason concerning what appears to the head coach’s reluctance to play Darrelle Revis during the four exhibition games and you can now understand why the Buccaneers’ season has simply spiraled out of control , with their not being much hope that things are likely to be turned around anytime soon .

As to the week eight schedule in the NFL, there are a number of games that will most definitely carry a great deal of intrigue and hype around them . I will personally leave that to the on air television personalities to discuss , because I am always assured of something inanely stupid being stated by the individuals in question who allegedly are providing the fans with a great deal of insight.

Leave it to the NCAA , to continue to show their utter stupidity and ongoing incompetence. After almost eighteen months of continued buffoonery by the Infractions’ Committee , an announcement was made as to the punishment to be meted out the Miami Hurricanes’ program and their willful violations of the NCAA rules , on a wide variety of transgressions . Bearing in mind , the actual mistakes by the NCAA investigators , the loss of documentary evidence and then their falsification of records . The fact that NCAA President Mark Emmert is said to feel comfortable the findings and the verdict rendered , either shows signs of his own stupidity or the very fact that the NCAA has lost all touch with reality along with its own credibility . I would like to think that the University President Donna Shalala would challenge the findings and the verdict , simply based on the wrongdoings by the NCAA investigators, if nothing else , to show that Collegiate Athletics’ governing body , simply cannot change the rules to meet their needs , after their own misdeeds . Granted, the University of Miami is at fault for its failed oversight in the monitoring of the athletic staff , compliance office and that of the student athletes past and present , embroiled in the scandal that has brought further disrepute upon the program .

As to the belief, that the NCAA has always had the student athletes’ interests at heart. I will liken that premise to the slave master /plantation owner an and his overseer , who grants the slaves on the plantation some time during a hot humid day, a ten minute water break, before they are made to return to their daily chores . As Malcolm X so astutely stated, “ we didn’t land on Plymouth Rock , Plymouth Rock landed on us “ ! The students remain indentured slaves of a corrupt and flawed system , but no one seems to want to acknowledge that fact , but they are prepared to discuss what is said to best adjudge, a fair way of determining a national champion in football at the FBS (Football Subdivision D 1 Level) . Have I actually missed something here , amidst all of this, and the countless billions of dollars reaped annually within collegiate athletics , but no transparency is shown by the NCAA , BCS or the major bowl conferences by way of their finances or business practices, while each of the entities operate under a tax-exempt status ? I guess, that must be overlooked by those who try to seek some sort of justification for the latest pretense being shown by the BCS and conference commissioners ?

As Wil Muschamp and his coaching staff seek to find ways to now resurrect the Florida Gators’ season after the team were routed by the Mizzou Tigers . I can’t help but wonder what must now being going on in the minds of the Gators’ fans statewide as well as nationally ! . Yes, there are fans of the program who actually reside outside the state of Florida . Who would have thought that, but yes, they remain as loyal as ever . For my friend, Chris , who in a recent comment on my site tried to suggest that the Gators have now slipped as low as number three in the state , in terms of football prominence . My response to that , would be , you seemed to have forgotten about the rise in prominence of the centrally (Florida) based UCF Golden Knights (5-1) , a now nationally ranked program in the BCS Poll and who appear to be on route to a major BCS Bowl berth, should their season pan out .

For Wil Muschamp and the Gators, they now have a week in which to prepare before facing the Georgia (Bulldogs) on the 2nd November , during week ten of the College Football season at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville , Florida. To say that this game will be of utmost importance as a “make or break” for the season, would be a vast understatement. Nonetheless, it has to be now or never if Florida are to make something of their year.

It may not have been the World Series many had hoped for, with undoubtedly many hoping that the Los Angeles Dodgers would now be staring down the Boston Red Sox in the 109th edition baseball’s postseason finale . The Dodgers simply failed show up in game six of their NLCS game against the St Louis Cardinals , who simply laid waste the Los Angeles franchise’s ambitions for the postseason . And for one of the team’s most prominent owners , Magic Johnson . This will be the season where he can now look back and merely speculate on not only what might have been, and whether not , it is now worthwhile pushing the team’s payroll to beyond $250 million annually , which would be an MLB record in terms of a team’s salary obligations . Not even the now once mighty New York Yankees have ever been bold enough to undertake such a premise. Can someone remind me once again , why it is that Alex Rodriguez remains the highest paid player in the game ? Damned, if I know !

Game one of this year’s World Series was something of a shock as the Boston Red Sox showed their intent , in making the Cardinals pay for their defensive errors on their way to an 8-1 opening series’ game-win . A shell-shocked Mike Matheny and his coaching staff must now be wondering , if after that bombardment they are in for more of the same during game two on Thursday night when the series resumes at Fenway Park in Boston Massachusetts. I believe that this St Louis’ team has it within them to even the series but it would have to be premised on the Cardinals’ players not repeating the mistakes witnessed in game one .

The more things are said to change, the more they remain the same . That is most certainly true of what might now be the most incompetent administration to hold office political office in this nation . Once again , leave it to Barack Obama to come up with another lame comment as to why he is so upset with the contractors who set up and maintain the website for the Affordable Healthcare Act (aka Obama-care) . Upon the website’s debut there were numerous problems that Kathleen Sebelius’ department , the Department of Health and Human Services failed to acknowledge or bring to the attention of the various technicians within that agency or the contracted company providing the maintenance and administration of the site . Now leave it to none other than the House Energy & Commerce Committee who also deal with health matters within the Congress . As they have sought to empanel their committee and request the presence of Kathleen Sebelius and the contractors to answer questions, as to why this site has either repeatedly crashed or the fact that most inquiries to the site would not lead an individual beyond the homepage . Nothing like incompetence, to show what you are not missing, when the government repeatedly screws things up. For months on end , during the initial setup there were numerous issues that cropped up concerning this site (, but somehow , it is only now , that there seems to be a sense of urgency after the tens of millions of dollars that have spent . Call me naive , but where else can you find this sort of incompetency without anyone being accountable for the sheer magnitude of the ineptitude executed and then somehow deliberately covered up ?

Should I now shed a tear every time Barack Obama is upset or emotionally torn apart by an issue ? I will be damned, if I now give him the time of day , much less anything else ! Is it not enough , that he has made a complete ass of himself , concerning the issue of Syria and the apparent death of 400 children, who were subjected to the use of chemical weapons by Syrian military forces , during what has now become a violent uprising in the Middle Eastern country . Yet, there seems to be no sense of outrage by this President , over the fact that approximately 550 children have been gunned down on the streets of Chicago , Illinois over the past thirty months. A great many of the victims were innocent and mere bystanders to a senseless crime wave , driven by drugs and gang related, as to the territorial rights of the various gangs at the center of this spree . The President, though not a native Chicagoan , his former senatorial seat took in certain parts of the Windy City.

Now come full circle, and with the NBA regular season is due to commence in five days and there seems to be a heightened sense that Chicago Bulls are more concerned with the start of their season , rather than the ongoing crime spree gripping the city . The city’s mayor Rahm Emmanuel , himself a former Chief of Staff to the incumbent President, has already shown his own incompetency since becoming the city’s chief executive . Emmanuel has complained, that he does not have the necessary resources to take a tough enough stance on crime , but has sought to inflame the situation even more so, by systematically cutting resources because of his city’s now burgeoning fiscal crisis. What this has now indicated to me, is that the country has become more uncaring and there is only a pretext displayed as to their being any type want to or need to aid others in distress . I believe that this all has more to do with apathy and a complete lack of understanding by the government itself , as to what is really ailing the nation at present !

No one from within the Bulls’ front office has spoken publicly on the issue of the increased violence within the city . Yet, the franchise has seen fit to air numerous radio and television commercials reminding the fans in the run-up to the start of the preseason and regular season of the return of the team’s star point guard Derrick Rose . I can only surmise that team owner Jerry Reinsdorf and GM Gar Forman do not believe that there needs to be a shared or civic responsibility as to the communal well-being of the citizens of the city , just as long as they are under the roof of the United Center in Chicago , showing their support for the team.

After an almost eighteen month layoff , a great deal is expected not only of Derrick Rose, but also the team as a whole , where the presence of Joakim Noah is likely to be felt throughout much of this upcoming season . Noah’s growing , maturity , presence and the very fact that his all-round game seems to have improved immensely over the past two seasons , would suggest that he is ready to be seen as one of better center/ power forwards within the NBA at present , especially from a defensive standpoint .

With Chicago starting off their regular season schedule as guests of the reigning NBA champions , the Miami Heat . The added expectations are that both teams will prove to be a serious challenge to each other within the Eastern Conference as well as during the playoffs this upcoming season . A likely match-up between the two, sets up some scintillating possibilities and expectations for both sets of fans , as well the NBA fans in general .

For the Miami Heat , it is not only about making a successful second defense of their NBA crown , but whether not this team can be seen as a legitimate dynasty , with its core element of LeBron James , Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade leading the charge towards for NBA immortality . Seen, as clear-cut favorites, to make that defense more than a reality . The question now becomes, which team within the Eastern Conference will pose a serious enough threat to derail those hopes during the postseason ? It is my belief, that the Miami Heat will gently stroll through the regular season , not necessarily posting the best record within the conference , but they will have certainly will have done enough , to make their qualification for the NBA playoffs a foregone conclusion and from there , they can simply shift into overdrive and lay waste to the opposition within the East and then await their Western Conference counterpart without a great deal of trepidation.

With finances, for any professional sports’ franchise always at the forefront of profitability, it has become increasingly annoying to hear senior basketball executives simply walk around with their head buried in the sand , acting as if the glaring precipice they are close to , does not pose an imminent threat or danger. Not unlike the mind numbing stupidity, shown by the Congress and how they have continually dealt with the fiscal budgetary crisis and the debt ceiling . After a while , there is only so far down the road where you can kick the can , before coming to the conclusion that something drastic has to be done . It is the same within the NBA and the very fact that teams who are being punished, by way of the league’s luxury tax, for exceeding the soft “salary cap” ($58.044 million) , are now looking at ways to implement a much more equitable solution. Far be it for Congress, to actually think of trying such an idea of reining in their spending or even for the members to actually seek cuts their own benefits . Like, that is ever likely to happen ? Voices of dissent, are no now coming from owners such as Micky Arison , James Dolan , Mikhail Prokhorov , Jim Buss , Robert Pera and Ted Leonsis . Yet, with David Stern not wanting to leave a maelstrom for his successor , Deputy Commissioner Adam Silver to deal with , it would appear that the NBA Commissioner will seek to calm those voices of dissent, by simply stating , that there is nothing for these owners to worry about. Where have we all heard that before , and then a calamitous event occurs ?

Though voted up upon by the NBA Board of Governors and approved, the league hierarchy’s wish to increase the rate upon which the luxury tax is based , which will rise from $1-00 for every dollar over the mandated soft cap of approximately $58 million to $1-50 for every dollar over the aforementioned figure . One can well understand the outrage of any team owner, who has a payroll in excess seventy-five or one hundred million dollars and the financial forfeiture that will have to be made to satisfy the league (NBA). Yet these are the very same owners who have allowed their general managers to spend so capriciously on players’ salaries and team payrolls. Not unlike the federal government and its idea of sound financial and fiscal restraint .

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Picture gallery .

What do you now believe to be the biggest myth or hindrance to the sporting landscape today , be it from a financial standpoint or otherwise ? Also what positives do you now believe there to be within sports ? Leave a comment as you see fit and thanks as always for the continued support !


Picture gallery and slideshow details below .


(1) Andrew Luck (12) of the Indianapolis Colts and Peyton Manning (18) of the Denver Broncos meet after the game at Lucas Oil Stadium on October 20, 2013 in Indianapolis, Indiana. The Colts won 39-33 . Getty Images North America / Andy Lyons …..

(2) Andrew Luck (12) of the Indianapolis Colts throws the ball during the game against the Denver Broncos at Lucas Oil Stadium on October 20, 2013 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Getty Images / Andy Lyons …

(3) Quarterback Alex Smith (11) of the Kansas City Chiefs carries the ball into the end-zone for a touchdown during the 1st half of the game against the Houston Texans at Arrowhead Stadium on October 20, 2013 in Kansas City, Missouri. Getty Images / Jamie Squires ….

(4) Wide receiver Eric Page (17) of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers fumbles a punt return against the Carolina Panthers October 24, 2013 at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida. Carolina recovered and won 31 – 13 . Getty Images / Al Messerschmidt ……

(5) Quarterback Tyler Murphy (3) of the Florida Gators is hit by defensive lineman Kony Ealy (47) of the Missouri Tigers during the game at Faurot Field/Memorial Stadium on October 19, 2013 in Columbia, Missouri. Getty Images / Jamie Squires …..

(6) St Louis Cardinals’ pitcher Michael Wacha delivers a pitch during the first inning of game two of the World Series played at Fenway Park , in Boston Massachusetts ,. . St Louis would defeat the Boston Red Sox 4-2 to even the series at one game apiece (1-1) in the best of seven-game series . The series resumes on Saturday evening with game three scheduled at Busch Ball Park in St Louis , Missouri . AP Photo / Matt Slocum …..

(7) Jacoby Ellsbury of the Red Sox breaks his bat hitting a single during game two of the World Series played on Thursday , 24th October , 2013 at Fenway Park against the St Louis Cardinals . Cardinals’ catcher Yadier Molina is well placed to see the incident . AP Photo ? Charlie Riedel ……

(8) Health & Human Services Secretary Katherine Sebelius is seen here with President Barack Obama at the White House in the Rose Garden , as the Commander-in-Chief addresses the convened press on his healthcare initiative . Sebelius’ department and the secretary , herself, have come in for mounted criticism for the handling of the technical issues concerning the website that provides all of the pertinent information concerning the Affordable Healthcare Act . The issue has been an ongoing problem for several weeks, with patrons of the site not being able access pages beyond the initial homepage . The website is actually administered by an outside government contractor . . A Congressional committee has been empaneled and convened, with both Sebelius and high-ranking personnel within the Health & Human Services’ Department summoned to attend an inquiry to answer questions concerning the still ongoing issues . Also in attendance, will be several executives from CGI Federal Inc . Reuters/ Craig Thompson …..

(9) Derrick Rose , left and Joakim Noah of the Chicago Bulls are looking place a serious dent in the Miami Heat’s attempt of making a successful defense of the NBA title . The Heat won the title previously in 2006 and then again 2012 and 2013 . The Florida based franchise are looking to become the first team to win three consecutive titles since the Los Angeles Lakers were able to achieve the feat in 2000, 2001 and 2002. Chicago Sun Times/ AP Photo / Mark Richardson ….

(10) From left to right , Mario Chalmers (15) , Lebron James , Chris Bosh , Greg Oden (52) and Dwyane Wade of the Miami Heat. Oden is the newest member of the franchise and will be seeking to add his presence to what is an experienced roster. Injuries have restricted Oden’s career in the NBA but during the off-season he was signed by the Miami based organization and has began to contribute to the team’s preseason production . Head coach Erik Spoelstra no doubt hopes that the player will be able to replicate that form during the regular season . Miami Herald / AP Photo / Paul Sharpe …..


tophatal ……………………… 10/24/2013



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Public Enemy ” Don’t believe the hype “

It’s not always the journey , but the first step taken on the road to that destination

It’s not always the journey , but the first step taken on the road to that destination

Six weeks into the NFL season and what we have all witnessed within the league , just happens to be an abundance of bad coaching , with some inexplicable explanations being offered up by the players and coaches alike for their continued mediocrity. Far be it for me to suggest, but I have never impressed by claims that there is said to be parity in the league (NFL) . It is my belief , that there are good teams, moderately good coaches , but an abundance of talent , where in large part , a number of these players are overpaid and not particularly skilled or adept, much less be able to show signs of leadership . Unfortunately, a large part of the fan-base that tend to follow the sports’ scene, they would to rather discuss rather the more mundane topics in the world of sports rather than succinctly debate a topic of discussion .


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Slideshow .

A recent visitor to my site made a comment that he could not have foreseen the impact made, where the Kansas City Chiefs would have started off the season at 6-0 , remain unbeaten and would now be challenging the Denver Broncos as the best team in the NFL. From my own perspective , I believe that the groundwork had already been laid , but the only things needed, were the right coaching staff , a good enough quarterback to helm the team , along with a front office , where the executives and coaches were all on the same page . Last season , none of the aforementioned criteria were in place , with Romeo Crennel as the head coach , along with his coaching staff and Matt Cassel as the team’s quarterback . The one saving grace for the franchise, might well have been , general manager John Dorsey , having replaced Scott Piolio , has seen fit to draft players who have been able to contribute immediately to the team , while acquiring players who were ready to play .

After the Chiefs’ clinical annihilation of the Oakland Raiders , the first of their two , now highly anticipated divisional match-ups against the Denver Broncos, are the games in question that the fans and the nation now awaits , with a great deal of excitement over the contests of note. Kansas will play host to the now troubled Houston Texans in week seven at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City , Missouri, a chance to push their record to 7-0 and giving the team their best start in franchise history, now seems all the more possible, given the frailties of the Texans at present on both sides of the ball. It must be said that for a number of teams, they are now simply playing for self-respect or in a number of cases, the livelihood of the respective head coaches in question. The more things are now beginning to unravel for the Oakland Raiders , it is my belief that Dennis Allen’s days with the once venerable are numbered, with GM Reggie McKenzie now seeking to make the head coach , the sixth incumbent to be fired from his position with the organization since 2005 .

College Football heads into its eighth week with the Alabama Crimson Tide (6-0) still riding high atop of the AP Poll , with the BCS rankings due to be announced later this month. Yet for some inexplicable reason , a number of analysts and outside observers or one might describe as antagonists, are now trying to suggest that Nick Saban’s team not deserving of being the top ranked team in the nation. Last I looked , Alabama remained unbeaten , albeit , that they have had a few scares along their schedule . In light of that however, their closest rivals in the rankings, the Oregon Ducks (6-0) in spite of their offensive prowess , have yet to show the nation that they are as equally adept on the defensive side of the ball . Granted, the Pac 12 has never been known as a conference where defense has been taught ,much less played to any degree , with the exception of perhaps one or two programs , most notably the Stanford Cardinals (5-1) . But in light of their recent slip up against the Utah Utes , defense , we can now surmise, is not now a prerequisite within the conference.

Alabama will play host to the Arkansas (Razorbacks) at Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa , Alabama , this Saturday , as the Tide seeks to keep their unbeaten record intact , while further strengthening their position atop of the rankings and within the SEC Western Division . A J McCarron and his teammates will seek to use this game as a reminder why this team is still seen as a prohibitive favorite to win their second consecutive national title, Saban’s fifth , and the program’s fourth in the past seven seasons .

Living in the state of Florida where College Football is treated with such reverence , the choices will abundant with regard to the programs , yet the only ones that seemingly matter , are the Florida Gators (4-2) , Florida State Seminoles (5-0) and the Miami Hurricanes (5-0) . Having lived and worked professionally in the southern part of the state before moving northwards on 2003 , the program of choice , merely by way my association with several alumni who were students at the University of Miami . I was able to frequent a number of basketball and football games as their guests and rallying to their support in such instances . Granted, as of late, the Canes’ program has been mired in controversy , while it still awaits some form of punishment for multiple violations of the NCAA rules on recruiting , alleged , academic fraud and what are said to current and former students gaining monetarily from gifts in violation of NCAA edicts . University President Donna Shalala and recently installed AD Blake James are still trying to remove the smear and lingering stains of the school’s association with the incarcerated felon Nevin Shapiro , whose statements led to the NCAA’s investigation of the athletics’ program by the NCAA’s Infraction Committee , as ordered by NCAA President Mark Emmert . That effort and investigation was mired with a great deal of incompetency, and it seems rather impulsive to believe how any reasonable verdict can be seen as just , in light of the ineptitude shown by collegiate athletics governing body .

With both Florida State (Seminoles) and Miami Hurricanes , riding on the crest of a wave, their SEC counterpart, the Florida Gators have found a way to simply throw a wrench into their season , with their recent loss to the LSU (Tigers) . That defeat has now left Wil Muschamp , his staff and the team asking why things have come apart when their intent was to be a major part of the SEC championship scene, if not the national championship landscape, itself ? Two losses , this season , and suddenly we have to question the direction Muschamp has the program heading in , and the quality of his recruits over the past two years . Florida now has the unenviable task of now having to go on the road to take on the Missouri (Tigers) this upcoming Saturday, in what can be best described as a make or break game for the team , this season . Another loss would further impact their year and all that they had hoped to achieve .

Al Golden and the Miami Hurricanes ,with a top twenty-five ranking nationally, are also sitting pretty within the ACC standings , and are seen as one of the like candidates for the conference championship , with an at large bid for a BCS Bowl game, if their schedule pans out, along the lines of an unbeaten season , if nothing else . The team itself has been on a tear and certainly their best result of the season so far , had to have been their dismantling of Florida . It certainly was a telling statement and laid the foundation for what has been an extraordinary year for several players on the team , but most notably for quarterback Stephen Morris , whose growing confidence and maturity process has been highlighted with his play this season . Add in a robust offense and a tenacious defense that appears to be very athletics , and one can understand the reason why Al Golden and his staff have to be pleased by what he has witnessed this season .

From heir-apparent to now head coach , Jimbo Fisher has now been given keys to the vehicle and he is now beginning to steer it on a course of his own design , and not one set out for him by predecessor Bobby Bowden , who over the latter part of his coaching career with the FSU Seminoles , may well have been caught asleep at the wheel. Bowden suggests, that he left the program under his own steam , but in reality , when faced with the option of being unceremoniously being fired , he sought to leave , in what can be best described as a polite dismissal , but accorded , all the trappings of a celebrated head coach leaving of his own free will . The octogenarian may well have built the program into a national powerhouse, but in the final years of his coaching the Seminoles , his teams were lackluster , uncompetitive and simply not winning .

Recruiting and coaching has been one of Fisher’s greatest attributes, and with his coaching staff in tow , he is now proving how good a coach he can really be, when the right talent is in place . An unbeaten start to the season , with their being rave reviews over Jameis Winston , a quarterback , who has not been afforded the same attention given to the likes of Tajh Boyd , Johnny Manziel , Teddy Bridgewater , Aaron Murray , Zach Mettenberger and A J McCarron. Perhaps , that is not such a bad thing after-all , if he remains off the national radar , while racking up the statistics and leading an unbeaten program back to national prominence . Winston , however , has not been able to achieve this all by himself , as it has been a collective team effort along the way. The Seminoles may not be laying waste to their opponents with the mindset of Oregon Ducks’ coach Mark Helfrich . Yet , as a fan of the college game, I would rather see the ‘noles in full flight rather than witnessing Ducks’ program, whose primary forte’ is simply either an aerial or ground assault , without their being a presence of the team actually being able to play any defense . While my thoughts may not be shared by many , we simply do not how good Oregon is meant to be , because they have yet to be tested over the course of their somewhat “soft schedule” . And for this, , they are rewarded with a number two ranking in the nation and in some cases, there are claimants that they should be seated atop of the AP Poll . I guess only time will tell, what is likely to happen !

On Saturday Florida State will have a prime-time nationally broadcast game against Tajh Boyd and the Clemson Tigers at Memorial Stadium , in Clemson , South Carolina , in a contest of two unbeaten teams , top twenty ranked and with likewise BCS national championship aspirations . The winner of this game, is still likely to have inside track of being a top five ranked team, once the dust has settled on the week eight schedule within College Football, while the loser is likely to drop outside the fifteen .

College Football with all of its , niceties , oddities , corruption , the biggest farce remains the naïveté of the BCS Committee and the major conferences that its present format of determining a national champion now requires a little tweaking . Well that is akin to the present administration , House of Representatives and the Senate reaching a bilateral agreement on the debt-ceiling as well as the fiscal waywardness of the Congress altogether . Needless to say, with idiots such as , Ted Cruz , Eric Cantor , Rand Paul , John Boehner , Paul Ryan , Marco Rubio , Harry Reid , Nancy Pelosi , Chaka Fattah , Max Baucus , Bill Nelson , and Charles Schumer as well this weak-willed President, Barack Obama have created such a cluster ##ck , that now the finger-pointing and name calling carries on unabated, without either side having a goddamn clue, as how best to proceed. The same can now be said of the premise, behind the new format to adjudge and determine how a new national champion will be decided along the lines of a playoff format . If the news being released by the BCS is to be believed , a panel of twelve to eighteen individuals will be seated to discuss the issues and then come to an agreement , to have a format in place with a seeding system, all in place for the 2014 season.

Courtesy of USA Today

NEW YORK (AP) — A person with direct knowledge of the process tells The Associated Press that former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is expected to be part of the selection committee that will pick the teams for the College Football Playoff next year.

The person also said a former Air Force Academy superintendent and a former NCAA executive who worked with the basketball tournament, are expected to be part of the new 12-to-18 member football panel.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the selection process is still ongoing.

The committee is expected to be comprised of current athletic directors and former college athletic administrators and coaches.

Last year, Rice and business executive Darla Moore became the first two female members of Augusta National Golf Club, home of the Masters.

GOOD FIT: Rice more than qualified for committee

The makeup of the College Football Playoff selection committee is expected to be set by the end of this season. Potential committee members have been asked to keep their involvement confidential until the announcement is made, but College Football Playoff Executive Director Bill Hancock and Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany said the names wouldn’t be a surprise to many.

“You’ll know almost all of them,” Hancock said recently.

Although Hancock and several commissioners have taken to referring to the selection committee as “the most prestigious committee in sports,” its business – and its members – will also be the subject of intense scrutiny.

“If they’re gonna be scrutinized the way they’re gonna be scrutinized, we’ve got to be ultimately careful and do every bit of due diligence,” Delany said recently. “You can expect that media – new media, old media – when someone says, ‘Oh, that guy voted that way for that reason,’ they’re gonna be under a fine-tooth comb. We’ve got to make sure, for everybody’s sake, that we’ve done everything we need to do to understand that.”

Click on link to read in full .

Now while on paper, this all seems feasible, the nuances of this all , will be derived upon which individuals, are invited to be part of the process , provide their expertise and the experience that each will bring to the table. In the midst of this all, a public announcement was made that one of the committee members, will be none than former NSC member and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice . Her expertise on Soviet Bloc politics, while unquestioned , her scope on a great deal of international diplomacy, bordered on being inept , but it should be remembered that the Commander-in-Chief at the time her tenure, was none other than George W Bush , whose geographical , political , international diplomatic knowledge and business acumen could be written on the back of a first class stamp and sent to Timbuktu , for all of the use that it would do. Likewise, has to be the case, in naming Condoleezza Rice to be a part of this committee.

The BCS and the major conference commissioners, clearly lack intelligence if they believe that Rice adds legitimacy to the panel. Much like an idiot, once suggested to me that former Vice Admiral James Stockdale should be treated with reverence, because he was a war hero . At the time, our discussion took on the fact that Stockdale, whose war service record was impressive , his inclusion in the political arena was about as welcomed as a sexually transmitted disease . He simply was clueless on wide range of political subjects, including the country’s domestic and foreign policy, as well its economy . This came at a time, when Stockdale was asked to be the Vice Presidential running mate of then Reform Party candidate , Ross Perot , whose own rise to fame, had more to do with his connivance and being able to have the government to subsidize many of the corporate entities he would simply plunder, as a part of an asset stripping exercise. Yet, all of this was somehow overlooked by the individual, whose lips must have been at one time, firmly pressed on James Stockdale’s sphincter. Is this really the stupidity of the US electorate at work, or merely the ongoing apathy that has been the norm over the past three decades ?



Picture gallery .

The BCS Committee and the major college football conferences had to be dragged kicking and screaming into the twenty-first century , very much in a similar vein as Major League Baseball had to drag its dumb ass along the way and adopt what Bud Selig still believes to this day, baseball has the toughest drug testing policy in all of professional team sports. Unfortunately, baseball’s commissioner , has never been looked upon as being one of the most intelligent individuals , never mind , in all of professional sports . The same can now be said of individuals such as John Swofford and Mike Slive , whose imprints are all over the current and sad state of affairs as it relates to this whole process , never mind the fact that final arbiter here will not be the panelists themselves but the major broadcast outlets , who now more than ever before, will be the ones with the real power , because if any part of this format is not to their liking, does anyone truly believe that this whole premise will ever see the light of day and actually be adopted in whole or in part ? Chime in, with your thoughts on this and anything else you believe pertinent to the topic at hand .


Picture and slideshow gallery details below .


(1) Wide receiver Justin Blackmon #14 of the Jacksonville Jaguars makes a reception as cornerback Champ Bailey #24 of the Denver Broncos makes the tackle at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on October 13, 2013 in Denver, Colorado. Denver would defeat Jacksonville 35-19 , dropping the Jaguars to 0-6 , tying them with the New York Giants (0-6) for the worst record in the league this season . Getty Images North America / Doug Pensinger ….

(2) Jacksonville Jaguars new head football coach Gus Bradley , left, smiles as he answers questions from the media during an NFL football news conference on Friday, Jan. 18, 2013, in Jacksonville, Fla. Team owner Shad Kahn looks on. AP Photo/The Florida Times-Union, Will Dickey ….

(3) Jan 14, 2013; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs general manager John Dorsey (left), chairman & team owner Clark Hunt , and coach Andy Reid pose for photos during the press conference at The University of Kansas Hospital Training Complex. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

(4) DeAndrew White (2) of the Alabama Crimson Tide runs with the ball while defended by Nate Willis (21) of the Kentucky Wildcats during the game at Commonwealth Stadium on October 12, 2013 in Lexington, Kentucky. Getty Images / Andy Lyons ……..

(5) Head coach Will Muschamp of the Florida Gators holds up one finger following a touchdown during the game against the Arkansas Razorbacks at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on October 5, 2013 in Gainesville, Florida. Getty Images / Sam Greenwood ……

(6) University of Miami President Donna Shalala is seen with here with the AD Blake James . In the aftermath of the Nevin Shapiro scandal, during which the now incarcerated felon , disclosed payments made to players on the program’s basketball and football teams. A number of coaching staff members were implicated in the allegations , including the current football coach Al Golden and a number of members of his coaching. However , the NCAA’s findings, are tainted , after it had been revealed , that evidence collected by the investigators from the Infractions’ Committee , were in fact of no use and littered with fabricated inaccuracies , after the original documents were either mislaid or inadvertently destroyed . Kyle Perry / Miami Herald …

(7) Head coach, Jimbo Fisher of the Florida State Seminoles talks to head coach Randy Edsall of the Maryland Terrapins pre-game on October 5, 2013 at Doak Campbell Stadium in Tallahassee, Florida John Gammons / Getty Images …..

(8) Republican legislators , from left to right Mitch McConnell , John Boehner and Eric Cantor are at the forefront of their party’s wish rescind the President’s healthcare initiative as well Barack Obama’s wish to raise the debt-ceiling limit . As contentious as the situation appears to be neither side seems intent in showing any bilateral compromise . AP Photo / Richard Carter

(9) Barack Obama is seen here alongside Harry Reid (center) , Nancy Pelosi and House Representative Jim Clyburn . AP / REUTERS / Tim Heller

(10) Ross Perot who twice sought the US Presidency as a third-party candidate is seen here with Vice Admiral James Stockdale (background) . A Medal of Honor recipient , Stockdale seemed to be out of touch with the political environment and many of the issues adversely affecting the country. Time Archive …

(11) Condoleezza Rice , a former NSC (National Security Council) member , adviser and Secretary of State during the second term of two term President George W Bush . Rice will amongst a group of panelists who will be adjudging the programs eligible for the new BCS playoff format that will be adopted in 2014 . As to whether not Condoleezza Rice’s inclusion adds legitimacy to the panel , can be adjudged in how one views the process in its entirety. AFP/ Photo / Peter Hamilton ……



tophatal …………………


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Results of Note And Other Tidbits …………

Results of Note And Other Tidbits …….

Well week four of the NFL season now leaves us with two unbeaten teams within the NFL and it should come as no surprise that franchise is none other than the defending Superbowl champions the Green Bay Packers who had their way with a listless Denver Broncos team . In a decisive 49-23 victory the Packers simply feasted on a defense that surely has to be one of the worst in the NFL. The other unbeaten franchise happens to be the early surprise of the season the Detroit Lions (4-0) .


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Slide show for your perusal.

Mike McCarthy’s team now has a comfortable lead within the NFC North and have been playing with a consistency not often seen from a franchise looking to make a successful defense of their title. At one time or another inconsistency tends to set in but for the coach and his coaching staff this has yet to be witnessed .

John Fox and his staff will have a hard time now persuading the beleaguered Broncos’ fans that they continue behind the role being played by quarterback Kyle Orton . The team as I have alluded to earlier has been listless and not all comfortable in their play . The cries are now for Tim Tebow to be truly given his baptism of fire and see whether or not he’s capable of being a good enough quarterback in this league . It is clear that this team needs some sort of therapeutic uplift because at this juncture it is becoming abundantly evident for all to see that Kyle Orton hasn’t the wherewithal to lead the ball club to where they need to be . Within the AFC West they are firmly rooted at the bottom of the division .

In a conference match-up the Oakland Raiders hosted the New England Patriots at the Oakland Coliseum in front of a soldout crowd of rabid fans cheering on their team . The AFC’s top rushing offense took on the conference’s worst defenses in what one had hoped would be a thoroughly riveting game . And for Tom Brady this was his chance to lead this Patriots’ team in light of their seismic implosion (34-31) against the Buffalo Bills in week three . Any thoughts that the Patriots would succumb to this Raiders’ team were quickly vanquished by Tom Brady and the play of his teammates .

Hu Jackson as coach of the Oakland Raiders would witness his players give their all in an entertaining game but he could not have been enthused by some errant plays by a number of players who were wayward and lacking in real enthusiasm . The Patriots were able in part to negate the run attack of the Raiders but that was not the only gauge with which to assess the success derived by Bill Belichick’s team in their 31-19 victory. Now with both the New England at 3-1 and the Oakland Raiders (2-2) recording these marks within their respective divisions week five will bring about something of a sterner test one would hope for both franchises.

Ah “The Dream Team” , the self prescribed moniker that a number of players have thought of themselves and much like the self absorbed players of the Miami Heat the Philadelphia Eagles are showing that they clearly cannot handle real adversity. Andy Reid’s team now finds themselves in something of a rut at 1-3 , injury ravaged and clearly not in a position to live up to the presumptive predictions that they are the worthwhile contenders for the Superbowl much less being one of the best teams within the NFC this season. In another surprising loss their second consecutive such miscue has many wondering where the real problems lay with this staff. Michael Vick coming off an apparent concussion and right hand contusion , wherein the player has been questioning the role of the referees now seems to playing well below the standards set last season.

If the Philadelphia Eagles are to have any chance of resurrecting their season then they will have to get out of this funk , regroup and start to play at a much higher caliber . The team is firmly rooted at the bottom of the NFC East looking up at their rivals the New York Giants , Washington Redskins and Dallas Cowboys . At present I am not so sure what to make of the Philadelphia Eagles , other than to suggest that they may well have thought that things would come to them far too easily but now in light of the fact that we are clearly seeing that this team simply isn’t as good as first thought it now remains to be seen what they now intend to make of their season .

Inexplicably the Philadelphia Eagles threw in a performance of absolute absurdity in losing 24-23 to the San Francisco 49ers . Don’t be fooled by the margin of victory as the 49ers led by Alex Smith who had a productive game simply outplayed the Eagles when it mattered most . Vick by no means at his best had a game that the player himself may well have been somewhat disappointed with. And for the Eagles’ fans in attendance watching wearily at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia , Pennsylvania , they now have to be asking themselves what the hell is simply going on with this team ? Those questions will have to be answered but certainly not with the customary sound bytes that we have come to expect when an organization and coaching staff are simply at a loss for words . No more idiotic excuses , either man up or simply shut the hell up once and for all ………….. define yourself by what you do on the field of play rather than what you would like to envisage doing. It is as plain and simple as that !

I am continuously sick and tired as to the horse-shit that Tony Romo is a proven quarterback in the NFL ! As a player has yet win a game of any real consequence over the course of career . But yet there are fans and observers out there jumping on this damn bandwagon as if they’re curious to see the latest celebrity porn video doing the rounds on the ‘net . In all honesty I do believe that Romo is simply the analysts’ desire as the omnipresent being on an otherwise pretentious team with the exception of Jason Witten and DeMarcus Ware .

In a game that was in a sense set to give us some perspective on the direction of this Cowboys’ team we were given a display by Jason Garrett’s players that simply belied belief. As good as we were led to believe that the Detroit Lions are said to be . The Dallas Cowboys simply set out to prove the whole world right with a performance that was mediocre at best and giving further credence to the fact that this Cowboys’ team are merely to be seen as pretenders rather than contenders .

If this 34-30 home loss by the Dallas Cowboys at Cowboys’ Stadium in Arlington , Texas , isn’t a clear indication as to how vastly overrated the Cowboys are , then the analysts , pundits and fans who still prescribe to the fact that this team should be seen as contenders had better begin to wake up and get a dose of reality ! If nothing else you can either simply choose to believe or realize the fact that what you once felt possible is no longer really possible . Jason Garrett , his coaching staff along with GM & owner Jerry Jones and the team are in for a long and arduous season .

Well now that the divisional rounds have began with regard to the MLB postseason . Eight teams now are vying for the game’s greatest honor and that is the World Series . From the AL we have the Detroit Tigers , New York Yankees , Tampa Bay Rays and Texas Rangers . The NL has produced the Arizona Diamondbacks , Milwaukee Brewers , Philadelphia Phillies and St Louis Cardinals . Anyone who witnessed the last day exploits of the Cardinals and Tampa Bay Rays will know that this had to have been the finest finishes to a regular season , perhaps in the last three decades to say the least within MLB . Thankfully , both teams’ exploits have been caught on film and will now have a place in the annals of history within the game.

The Tampa Bay Rays got off to a sensational start culling the Texas Rangers 9-0 at Rangers Ballpark , in Arlington , Texas . But with the Rangers coming back to take game two that series is now tied at one apiece and set to restart with the Joe Maddon’s team hosting game three at Tropicana Field , St Petersburg, Florida , in front of a sellout crowd of approximately 40,000 Rays’ rabid fans .

It will be incumbent upon the Rays to win tonight’s game three if they are to have any chance of winning this series as the divisional rounds of the playoffs are the best of five games’ format . It is extremely hard for any team to be asked to comeback from 2-1 deficit and win the final two games of such a format . Not that it cannot be done but it places such a team at a great disadvantage to begin with.

On the mound tonight for the Tampa Rays is David Price who squares off against Colby Lewis of the Texas Rangers . It is an intriguing contrast of styles with regard to these two pitchers . And certainly for Ron Washington as manager of the Rangers, he is no doubt hoping to see his his young pitcher produce the form that has made him one of the strengths of this pitching roster . Certainly the Tampa Bays are not to be outdone in that area either as their pitching roster has depth and has to be viewed as one the preeminent groupings in not only AL but in the league altogether .

But if Joe Maddon’s player are to prove themselves the equal of their AL rivals then their bats will have to come alive during this postseason and remain consistently so during the playoffs . And this is where if anything that the Texas Rangers have the upper hand as they were amongst the most prolific of offenses in the AL during the course of the regular season . And with the likes of Josh Hamilton , Ian Kinsler , Adrian Beltre , Mike Napoli , Michael Young and Nelson Cruz the Rays’ pitching staff will certainly have their hands full. If they can counter the effect of that Texas Rangers’ offense by some sound defensive and pitching then there’s no reason to believe why they cannot pull of the improbable and mount another upset. After all consider their plight within the AL East a month ago and what they were able to achieve in the year end finale that allowed them to gain the AL wildcard berth ? No one thought it possible at the time that the Tampa Bay Rays would mount that amazing run (19-8) that would see them erase a 7.5 game deficit and rally to derail the Boston Red Sox’s hopes .

Call me naive but I simply thought that the SEC — matchup between the Alabama (Crimson Tide) and Florida Gators would be something of a much more competitive game . Instead what the fans in attendance saw at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville , Florida as Nick Saban’s team manhandled Will Muschamp’s players on their way to a lopsided 38-10 defeat of the Gators . To say this game was close at anytime other than in the first quarter , would be to suggest the complete works of Pablo Picasso are a waste of time.

A marauding Trent Richardson solidified himself as a Heisman Trophy candidate as he plundered the Gators’ defense for a 208 all purpose yards and 2TD’s . AJ McCarron the Crimson Tide’s quarterback not to be outdone played with a great deal of aplomb. There was simply no answer coming from Will Muschamp’s players on their home field as this massacre unfolded in front of a stunned crowd and national television audience. There are times when you simply pity a team when they have no answer for an opponent’s stellar display and this most definitely was one of them.

The Gators’ cause wasn’t helped with the fact that John Brantley had something of an inconsistent game that was a mix of misplaced errors and his receivers not being in unison with the quarterback. That asides beyond the play of Andre Debose and Deonte Thompson there was little of anything that was of real consolation for this Gators’ team. With the likelihood of John Brantley now having to sit out the upcoming game against the number one ranked LSU Tigers due to a knee injury in the game against Alabama . It will be interesting to see how Will Muschamp will deal with this issue and whether or not he will call upon either Jacoby Brissett , Jeff Driskell , Chandler Carr or quite possibly see if Trey Burton would be willing to step into the fray and play the position given his aptitude and previous experience on the depth chart before becoming a wide receiver on the team.

At 4-1 overall but 2-1 within SEC (Eastern Division) this upcoming game (8th October ,2011 – Baton Rouge , La,.) against the LSU Tigers will prove to be a stern test Florida and how they are able to handle themselves after such an embarrassing defeat and display. Another loss to the nation’s top ranked team could curtail any ambitions that they may well have had for the SEC championship and the thought of the BCS national title .



Picture gallery for your perusal .

What thoughts if any do you have on the weekend’s sporting schedule and which results if any simply piqued your interests be it in the NFL , MLB or College Football ? Chime in with your thoughts as you deem fit .

Alan aka tophatal …….


(1) Head coach John Fox of the Denver Broncos watches a replay on the scoreboard during the final minutes of a game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field on October 2, 2011 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. Photo by Matt Ludtke /Getty Images ….

(2) Denver Broncos quarterback Kyle Orton (8) runs during the first half of an NFL football game against the Green Bay Packers, Sunday, Oct. 2, 2011, in Green Bay, Wis. AP Photo/Mike Roemer ……

(3) New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (1) talks to Oakland Raiders quarterback Jason Campbell (8) at the end of an NFL football game in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, Oct. 2, 2011. New England won 31-19. AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez ………

(4) Tom Brady(12) hands off to BenJarvus Green-Ellis (42) of the New England Patriots who ran in for a touchdown against the Oakland Raiders at Coliseum on October 2, 2011 in Oakland, California. Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images …..

(5) Running back Frank Gore (21) of the San Francisco 49ers is tackled by cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha (24) of the Philadelphia Eagles during an NFL football game at Lincoln Financial Field on October 2, 2011 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The 49ers defeated the Eagles 24-23 . Photo by Rich Schultz /Getty Images …….

(6) Detroit Lions wide receiver Calvin Johnson (81) celebrates his touchdown by bumping helmets with quarterback Matthew Stafford (9) during the second half of an NFL football game against the Dallas Cowboys on Sunday, Oct. 2, 2011, in Arlington, Texas. AP Photo/Waco Tribune Herald, Jose Yau …….

(7) Tony Romo (49) of the Dallas Cowboys gets knocked to the turf against the Detroit Lions at Cowboys Stadium on October 2, 2011 in Arlington, Texas. The Detroit Lions beat the Dallas Cowboys 34-30 . Someone call me when Romo wins a meaningful game for the Cowboys ? Romo on his best day can’t clean the sh#t off his own cleats but there are idiots fans suggesting that he’s capable of leading the Cowboys to the Superbowl . What type of hallucinogens are these morons taking at present . Hopefully it’s nothing from the medicinal bag of Dr Conrad Murray ! Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images …..

(8) ARLINGTON, TX – OCTOBER 01: (L-R) Ian Kinsler (5) of the Texas Rangers celebrates with Nelson Cruz (17) , Elvis Andrus (1) , and Josh Hamilton (32) after the Rangers beat the Tampa Bay Rays 8-6 in Game Two of the American League Division Series at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on October 1, 2011 in Arlington, Texas. Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images …….

(9) Tampa Bay Rays right fielder Matt Joyce , left, watches second baseman Ben Zobrist (18) catch a fly ball by Texas Rangers’ Adrian Beltre during the seventh inning at Game 2 of baseball’s American League division series playoffs, Saturday, Oct. 1, 2011, in Arlington, Texas. AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez ………

(10) GAINESVILLE, FL – OCTOBER 1: Quarterback Jeff Driskel (16) of the Florida Gators sets to pass against the Alabama Crimson Tide October 1, 2011 at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, Florida. Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images ……

(11) Running back Trent Richardson (3) of the Alabama Crimson Tide celebrates a touchdown run against Florida Gators October 1, 2011 at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, Florida. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images) ……

(12) Linebacker Nico Johnson (35) of the Alabama Crimson Tide recovers a fumble by quarterback Jeff Driskel (16) of the Florida Gators October 1, 2011 at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium in Gainesville, Florida. Alabama would go on to defeat Florida 38-10. Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images …..

(13) : Trent Richardson (3) of the Alabama Crimson Tide runs for yardage during a game against the Florida Gators at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on October 1, 2011 in Gainesville, Florida. Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images ……..

(14) Brad Smelley (17) of the Alabama Crimson Tide runs past Josh Evans (24) of the Florida Gators during a game at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium on October 1, 2011 in Gainesville, Florida. Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images …..


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NFL player stats thru’ week 4 & top performers


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MLB results 2nd October 2011

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College Football Polls AP & USA Today


Maino ….. feat’g ….. Roscoe Dash ….. “Let It Fly ”

My nigga’ Maino is kickin’ ass and takin’ names !

The BCS Stands For What ……….. ? ? ?

The BCS Stands For What ………… ? ? ?

It’s here, it’s now for all the marbles and I though I must say it I’ve not been overly enamored with what I’ve seen throughout the Bowl Series within collegiate football. Perhaps from a standpoint that I’m amongst a growing group I believe who would desire to see a playoff system within college football. Having the coaches , the press and a back room filled with computer geeks summarily in part make the decision as to who may end up playing in the national championship game does smack of idiocy to begin with. Never mind that the lesser games with their rather superfluous names make about as much sense as having the choice being made by a group of blind people simply using a pin and having the teams’ names being listed on a piece of paper. The whole BCS Championship series is simply nothing more than a money making exercise and that’s simply it. The six major conferences ( ACC , Big 10 , Big 12 , Big East , Pac 10 and SEC) that in essence oversees this rather corrupt system if anything ought to be thankful that they’re allowed to keep up this charade.


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Slide show .

While there’s been repeated criticism by members of Congress as to the way that teams are determined and the template put in motion is something of a joke. Any member of Congress wishing to address this situation given the fact that the BCS system has its supporters and detractors within that body smacks of idiocy to begin . Were you aware that the BCS Championship series has its own body of lobbyists up on Capitol Hill in Washington DC in order to safeguard its very existence ? The tax advantages to be attained by the NCAA as well as the BCS as a body and one can see why there’s billions of dollars to be made by both of these bodies who as such state that the interests of the student athletes at heart. Yeah I’ve heard it said also that’s the same belief held by the Medellin drug cartel in Colombia as they simply flood this country with their drugs. So what’s the difference between the BCS , NCAA and the drug cartels of Colombia ? Oh so it’s illegal to smuggle narcotics into this country for ill gotten gains while supplying that ever increasing band of drug users dependent on these narcotics. It’s not exactly stopped the big pharmaceutical companies in acting the way that they’ve been allowed even with the FDA as a conduit . Merely look at the billions made by these companies and the financial windfall it creates for the federal government by way of the taxes ? That’s simply the only difference between the two entities in question and the way that the government views their activities by way of its legality.

The championship game sponsored by Tostitos and to be played between the SEC’s —– Auburn (Tigers) led by Heisman Trophy winner Cam Newton and coached by Gene Chizik hope to convey why it is that they’re favored to win this matchup against the Oregon (Ducks). Both teams will have their slew of vociferous supporters up and down the country. And I’ve no doubt that there’ll be a certain East Coast – West Coast bias to this matchup and the feelings to be had between the fans and perhaps the nation at large. If anything these matchups are essentially driven by the appeal of the what the nation’s programmers’ wish to see , in order that they can attain the best returns possible by way of a televised audience.

Oregon for its part coached by Chip Kelly and led by Darron Thomas at quarterback with running back LaMichael James are sure to make this game a competitive one. We may well have been spoiled in recent years by the exploits of the Florida Gators , Texas Longhorns and that of USC but this game could very well match that classic of between the Trojans and Longhorns when they were led by Matt Leinart and Vince Young respectively . Both players in question were able to parlay those feats into careers within the NFL . Young for his part may not be long with the Tennessee Titans where his career has plummeted as fast as a meteorite falling from the sky. Leinart has yet to show his true guile for the NFL and if anything his being coddled while at USC may well have something to do with the fact that he’s yet to meet the expectations that many felt he was capable of.

This game will come down to one of two things how capable both defenses are at stopping the potent offensive threats that either side can display in terms of their respective pass and running attacks. If neither can actually stymie the other in that respect then we could end up with a high scoring game and one wherein yardage could be off the charts. Will it be what the fans want to see at the end of the day ………..who can say ? The national championship games haven’t always been entertaining but they seem to fill that void in airtime that the programmer has no other product at their disposal to display , so make of it what you will.

The Tigers’ Cam Newton despite his off the field issues will be looking to put an emphatic stamp on this season having led his team to the SEC championship game (56-17) and winning the Heisman Trophy with ease. It’d be indicative of the player at this juncture of the season to simply stamp his authority on it by showing why he’s the best college player in the game. Given the recent exploits of Stanford’s Andrew Luck there may well be a great deal more on the line with the perception that Newton could enter the NFL Draft for the untold riches that can be garnered there. Whether or Newton can and will be allowed exploit the weaknesses of the Oregon Ducks will be largely dependent upon the skill-set of that Ducks’ defense.



Picture gallery for your perusal.

Oregon I’ve no doubt will come into this game being viewed as the underdogs by the press , public and no doubt the oddsmakers in Vegas. But I’d dare say that they’re keen to pull off the upset and show the nation what they’re truly capable of. Throughout much of the season Oregon has systematically played uptempo and they’ve literally destroyed some of their opponents almost at will. When tested at times they’ve risen to the occasion in more ways than one, showing their deftness in all phases of the game. This game will be a battle of wills and the coaching staff of both teams had better have their battle plans drawn and ready . If not, then one of these teams will find itself in the midst of an incessant onslaught and the ensuing battle could very well be viewed as being one sided and something of bore for the fans watching.

With the $17,500,000 at stake for the winner apart from the privilege of raising the the crystal trophy to signify that they’ve been crowned national champions. Along with it all comes the bragging rights and a great deal of prestige for the winning team and its program. Recruits will no doubt be watching with a great deal of interest and given the exposure that such a game brings they can’t help but feel that’s where they’re going to want to be ……….. on collegiate football’s grandest stage playing for a national title. The end goal being to showcase their talents for the watchful eyes for the NFL general managers and scouts also who are watching. It’s every young kids’ dream as well as that of the players who will be on display this upcoming Monday were the game is scheduled to be played at the University of Phoenix Stadium , Glendale , Arizona ,.

How have you viewed the games that have taken place during this Bowl season and what if anything to your mind has been the bright spot so far ? And are you as such entirely interested in the outcome of the national championship game ? Furthermore , what are your feelings on how the BCS system works and why they’re unwilling to adopt a playoff system ? Simply chime in with a comment as to your thoughts on the matter .

NB: Auburn Tigers’ roster

Head coach Gene Chizik

Tigers’ coaching staff

Oregon Ducks’ roster

Head coach Chip Kelly

Oregon Ducks’ coaching staff

BCS National rankings as of 12/05/10

Click here to get the latest college football news.

Alan aka tophatal …………………………………………


Leonie Nicole

Eye candy for you all . Leoni Nicole and a small montage of this beauty.

Hello and good morning ! It’s a hell of a day don’t you think ?

Leonie Nicole 2

Naughty but simply nice !


John Legend feat’g Common & The Roots ……..”Wake Up Everybody”


What In The Wide World Of Sports Is Going On Here …………Hey Urban ‘Lean Back ‘ And Do The Rock Away

Imagine my surprise when I first heard and then read about the re-signing and retirement of Florida Gators’ football coach , Urban Meyer. Now to say that the ‘Gator Nation’ wasn’t caught flat-flooted by the announcement would be like stating that all the Titanic did was to strike an iceberg in the middle of the Atlantic. There was far much more behind the event that met the eye. As is the case here with Urban Meyer.

Meyer seen  here  speaking  to  a  number of  his  players  on  the  sidelines   during  a  college  game.  picture  appears  courtesy  of  ap/photo/  Brian  Joubert   .........
Meyer seen here speaking to a number of his players on the sidelines during a college game. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Brian Joubert .........

Health issues asides , much of what we’re being told seems to be somewhat benign in many respects. We all know that a coach’s life is a pressured one. Especially where the program you oversee is a successful one and that is the envy of many schools across the nation. That’s not to say that Meyer’s statement aren’t valid. But he’s been in the position of coaching this program for the last four years. And it wasn’t as if he’d enter into the agreement of being hired that he’d done so with his eyes closed. He knew the expectations that awaited and of the legacy and tradition of the program. Herein lies the rub, the loss to Alabama 32-13 in the SEC championship game and the subsequent embarrassment may well have far too much to bear for the coach. Not only that but a great deal was expected of not only Florida but also its coaches , as it’d set out of defending its national championship title.

Courtesy of

Urban Meyer To Take Leave of Absence, Not Step Down; Addazio Named Interim Head Coach

University of Florida head football coach Urban Meyer informed his team Sunday afternoon that he will take an indefinite leave of absence rather than step down. Meyer addressed the team shortly before the Gators boarded a plane to New Orleans for Friday evening’s Allstate Sugar Bowl.

“During the past couple of days I was offered and encouraged to take a leave of absence,” said Meyer. “I’ve accepted this offer to improve on my health.”

The news came less than 24 hours after Meyer had announced he was stepping down as head coach. Meyer will still coach the Gators in the Allstate Sugar Bowl Friday evening before beginning his leave of absence.

Florida offensive coordinator Steve Addazio will take over as interim head coach during Meyer’s time away from the program.

Click on link to read this article in its entirety

Now an about turn has been done by Meyer and subsequent to his original formal announcement, he’ll take an indefinite leave of absence from the team to deal with his health issues and to be alongside his family. Good or bad, this was a drastic step to be taken originally by the coach. One can only suspect that whatever the trauma he faced was indeed grave and needed his urgent attention. Far better to be a live coach rather than a dead one on the sidelines of game that you’re coaching.

Florida coach Urban Meyer calls a time out during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Troy in Gainesville, Fla., Saturday, Sept. 12, 2009, Offensive coordinator Steve Addazio, left, and quarterback Tim Tebow stand behind him . Florida won 56-6. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Phil Sandlin ......

Calmer heads have prevailed and the likelihood of the school losing its coach for good has been sidestepped for the moment. With Meyer deciding to take an indefinite leave of absence after he’s coached the team in the Sugar Bowl against Cincinnati . He’ll hand over the reins to his assistant coach , Steve Addazio until his impending return. Addazio is a well versed and highly thought of assistant And there should be no immediate drop off in terms of the coaching process. He’ll no doubt want the team to avail itself of the chance at redemption by showing that the loss to Alabama, while traumatic , they’ve been able to overcome it. So it is expected that the Gators will go out of their way to waylay whatever the Bearcats might offer up in terms of an effective opponent on the day.

If there’s any discomfort to be had in this story it is the skepticism with which it was initially met. I am not saying that there isn’t some veracity in the decision made by Urban Meyer. But at the same in the four years of his coaching this program , this is the first time something of this nature has come to the fore. And most certainly prior to this I am sure that he must’ve known whatever health issues he was in the midst of , had to have come into being at some point during his coaching tenure with the program. So it begs the question why here and why now ?

My own thought here is that Meyer came to the right conclusion but made an erroneous error in the timing of the announcement of his original decision. He ought to have ‘leaned back’ – do ‘the rockaway’ and really chilled before coming to his decision. If nothing else it’d wouldn’t have scared the ‘living hell’ out of avid Gators’ fans such as sportschump and the litany of others like him up down the state of Florida. They must’ve literally shat bricks when they first heard the news !

What were your original thoughts when you first heard the news ?

Terror Squad feat’g Fat Joe ‘Lean Back’ .

The More You Think You Know The Less You Really Do Know …..

The More You Think You Know The Less You Really Do Know

So there it was, the stage was set for SEC Championship Game between the number one and two ranked teams in the country. And with the winner gaining a berth in the national championship .The BCS Bowl national championship game set for early 2010 and the world awaits the crowning of a new champion of collegiate football.

Alabama coach Nick Saban congratulates running back Mark Ingram (22) after a first half score in the NCAA college football SEC championship game  against Florida at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta Saturday, Dec. 5, 2009. Alabama won 32-13.  picture appears courtesy of AP/photo/ Dave Martin .......
Alabama coach Nick Saban congratulates running back Mark Ingram (22) after a first half score in the NCAA college football SEC championship game against Florida at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta Saturday, Dec. 5, 2009. Alabama won 32-13. picture appears courtesy of AP/photo/ Dave Martin .......

Number one ranked Florida Gators matched wits against Nick Saban’s number two ranked Alabama ‘Crimson Tide’. Two great representatives of the South Eastern Conference and quite rightly by far the two best teams in the nation. Unfortunately, today one of the two teams in question failed to live up to that reputation.

A disheartened  Florida fan can't hide her  disappointment at the end of a 32-13 loss to Alabama in the NCAA college football SEC championship game at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta Saturday, Dec. 5, 2009. picture appears courtesy of AP/photo/ John Amis ......
A disheartened Florida fan can't hide her disappointment at the end of a 32-13 loss to Alabama in the NCAA college football SEC championship game at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta Saturday, Dec. 5, 2009. picture appears courtesy of AP/photo/ John Amis ......

And while many of us were lauding the accomplishments of Urban Meyer’s Gators and the very fact that they had in Tim Tebow, a player who everyone admired not just for his playing abilities but also because of his demeanor on and off the field . What we in essence witnessed today, was the unveiling of a team whose flaws were glaringly exposed . Florida for all of its past glories failed to show up today and had no answer Alabama , at all .

Alabama's Mark Ingram (22) celebrates after a fourth quarter touchdown against Florida in the NCAA college football SEC championship game at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta Saturday, Dec. 5, 2009. Alabama won 32-13.  picture appears courtesy of AP/photo/ John  Amis ......
Alabama's Mark Ingram (22) celebrates after a fourth quarter touchdown against Florida in the NCAA college football SEC championship game at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta Saturday, Dec. 5, 2009. Alabama won 32-13. picture appears courtesy of AP/photo/ John Amis ......

The game and its events as it unfolded was everything that one would’ve expected but unfortunately whatever script that Gators’ fans had come to expect. Well, today it wasn’t about to happen. Simply put, the Gators and their fans had ‘their asses’ handed to them with their ‘heads and ass being served up on a silver platter’. Embarrassing would be an understatement to say the very least . Florida had no answer at all in any facet of the game, as it got under way.

Florida quarterback Tim Tebow (15), defensive end Carl Johnson (57), offensive lineman Maurkice Pouncey (56) look on late in the fourth quarter of their 32-13 loss to Alabama in the NCAA college football SEC championship game at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta Saturday, Dec. 5, 2009.  picture appears courtesy of AP/photo/ John Amis  .......
Florida quarterback Tim Tebow (15), defensive end Carl Johnson (57), offensive lineman Maurkice Pouncey (56) look on late in the fourth quarter of their 32-13 loss to Alabama in the NCAA college football SEC championship game at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta Saturday, Dec. 5, 2009. picture appears courtesy of AP/photo/ John Amis .......

Courtesy of Associated Press & Yahoo Sports

Tide rolls on with 32-13 win over Tebow’s Gators

By Paul Newberry, AP Sports Writer

ATLANTA (AP)—The move was so unlike Nick Saban. The Alabama coach put away all that boardroom talk for a leaping shoulder bump with star running back Mark Ingram.

The Crimson Tide was back on top.

Across the way, Tim Tebow couldn’t do a thing, tears streaming down his cheeks as he watched the clock wind down on an ending that wasn’t in his farewell plan.

With Ingram and Greg McElroy leading an emphatic 32-13 chomping of top-ranked Florida on Saturday, No. 2 Alabama again stands supreme in the Southeastern Conference. More important, the Tide is just one win away from an even bigger title—its first national crown since 1992.

Alabama will face Texas in the BCS championship game after the No. 3 Longhorns beat Nebraska for the Big 12 championship Saturday night when Hunter Lawrence nailed a 46-yard field goal as time expired.

“Everyone had to buy into not to be denied in this game,” Saban said, getting back to business after a raucous celebration at the Georgia Dome. “To be a champion, that’s what you had to do. I’ve never been prouder of a group of players.”

The no-nonsense coach, who talks of “The Process” instead of the houndstooth, needed only three years to bring Alabama back from a grim era to a place it was accustomed to under Paul “Bear” Bryant.

Champions, indeed.

“They seemed like they wanted it a whole lot,” Florida cornerback Joe Haden said.

Ingram, making a strong bid to claim the school’s first Heisman Trophy, rushed for 113 yards and three touchdowns. McElroy threw for 239 yards and a touchdown to claim the MVP award, showing he’s no weak link. The Alabama defense held Tebow in check and left him crying at the end.

“It’s tough. You know it’s not how you want to go out,” Tebow said. “They were just better than us today.”

In order to read Paul Newberry’s article in its entirety just click on the link provided to view.

Alabama running back Mark Ingram (22) tries to run past Florida's Ryan Stamper (41) during the fourth quarter of the NCAA college football SEC championship game  Alabama won 32-13.   picture appears courtesy of AP/photo/John Bazemore ......
Alabama running back Mark Ingram (22) tries to run past Florida's Ryan Stamper (41) during the fourth quarter of the NCAA college football SEC championship game Alabama won 32-13. picture appears courtesy of AP/photo/John Bazemore ......

There’s not much that one can really say about the game that the result and the margin of victory cannot tell you. On reflection Alabama’s 32-13 victory over Florida, was enough to suggest that all of the talk about that the Gators were preordained as the national champions. Clearly, Nick Saban and his Crimson Tide saw that would not be the case today. It was an emphatic statement made by Alabama and denotes that what many had though about the team was in fact true. ‘They are and were better than Florida, in every sense of the word’.

Sheer frustration can't be  hidden  by Florida coach Urban Meyer , as he  looks on from the sidelines during the first half the NCAA college football SEC Championship game against Alabama at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta Saturday, Dec. 5, 2009.  picture appears courtesy of  AP/photo/ Dave Martin .....
Sheer frustration can't be hidden by Florida coach Urban Meyer , as he looks on from the sidelines during the first half the NCAA college football SEC Championship game against Alabama at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta Saturday, Dec. 5, 2009. picture appears courtesy of AP/photo/ Dave Martin .....

For Florida and all thoughts, that they had in making a successful defense of its national championship has bitten the dust and to a great deal of embarrassment. The more we thought we knew about the Florida Gators, in reality the less we actually knew. And when that happens,then questions must be asked and answered. The thing is, questions were asked of Florida on Saturday and they failed to answer in such an embarrassing way. That all one can now say ……’well we thought we knew you but really we just didn’t know you at all’.

When You Arrive You’ve Got To Arrive In Style …… !

When You Arrive You’ve Got To Arrive In Style ….

Well, the college football regular season has come to a close and needless to say there are those who’ve made their voices heard. While others,will bow out rather unceremoniously in silence. And now for the Florida Gators either history now awaits them or infamy. Urban Meyer, as coach of the Gators, knows that should he prevail in the SEC Championship Game, he then has the luxury of knowing that a berth awaits him the national championship game. As to who that opponent will be , it remains to be seen .

Florida  quarterback , Tim  Tebow (15) completes  a  pass as he  gets  hit  by Florida  State's  Markus White (98)  during the  second  half  of the  game  played  at  Ben  Hill  Griffin  Stadium, in  Gainesville ,Florida. The  Gators  would  go  on  to  defeat their rival , Florida State  37-10   in  a  thoroughly  lopsided  game.    picture  appears  courtesy of  AP/Photo / Phil  Sandlin  .................
Florida quarterback , Tim Tebow (15) completes a pass as he gets hit by Florida State's Markus White (98) during the second half of the game played at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, in Gainesville ,Florida. The Gators would go on to defeat their rival , Florida State 37-10 in a thoroughly lopsided game. picture appears courtesy of AP/Photo / Phil Sandlin .................

Yesterday, the Florida Gators faced their old and some might say their staunchest rival in the Florida State Seminoles. And for the ‘noles this has been a season of discontent and self evaluation. The turmoil within the Seminoles’ organization is one, which on the face of it has become absolutely idiotic and that has reached such heights comedic extravagance that it is hard to understand what direction the program should now take.Seminoles’ coach,Bobby Bowden, whilst having led the program, of late he’s become something of a weighty anchor that is now bringing down the vessel that is the Florida State football program. The game has passed Bowden by and in such a way that the play of the Seminoles has become barely recognizable . They’re no longer competitive and in terms of recruiting ’blue chip’ athletes. Well, that hasn’t been the case for the program in a number of years. Mind you, they’re the apologists out there,who’ll say this is but a cyclical situation for the program. But consider this, for the last decade the program has continually regressed under Bowden’s tenure. But ‘the grand old czar’ of Florida college football now sits and surveys a program that is now in complete disarray . Much of that has been of Bowden’s own making and that of the lax attitude of his coaching staff and idiocy of the Athletics Department of the once esteemed university.

In contrast , the program of University of Florida now stands on the threshold of placing itself amongst the elite programs in college football history. The program’s coach, Urban Meyer seeks to win the school’s fourth national title and his third with the program in his four years with the university. Alongside, Meyer, he’s had the distinct pleasure of having coached the program’s most storied and perhaps its best player in the team’s quarterback, Tim Tebow. And for the senior , he’s now seeking history himself, by looking to win his third national championship and with the added possibility of winning a second Heisman trophy. A feat that has not been done since Archie Griffin won two consecutive Heisman trophies. And for the young Tebow, not only does college glory await him but the chance to take his game to the next level and that is take center stage on the football fields of the NFL. But before that scenario materializes , Tebow and his teammates have some unfinished business that requires their urgent attention.

Florida cornerback Wondy Pierre-Louis, right, breaks up a pass intended for Florida State receiver Rodney Smith in the end zone during the second half of an NCAA college football game in Gainesville, Fla., Saturday, Nov. 28, 2009. picture  appears   courtesy by  AP/Photo/ Phelan M  Ebenhack  ...........
Florida cornerback Wondy Pierre-Louis, right, breaks up a pass intended for Florida State receiver Rodney Smith in the end zone during the second half of an NCAA college football game in Gainesville, Fla., Saturday, Nov. 28, 2009. picture appears courtesy by AP/Photo/ Phelan M Ebenhack ...........

Yesterday , the Gators and the Seminoles faced off against one another at ‘The Swamp’, in Gainesville, Florida. Games of this magnitude meant so much to both programs but today it’s merely another just another ‘stop off point’ for the Gators. For Seminoles’ fans, this game was ‘the make or break’ for their season. A loss and they’re no longer Bowl eligible, a win and one could surmise that there’ll be some respite as to the speculation concerning the future of Bobby Bowden. But that’d be very much predicated upon which team turns up to face the Gators ? Inconsistency in terms of their play has very much epitomized the fall from grace of Bowden’s team and the program in general . And that hasn’t been merely because of what we’ve witnessed this season but essentially what has taken place within the program over the past few years. A program that has been sinking in its own ineptitude and asinine belief in it own self grandeur . Well, there’s nothing grand about a program that is now becoming the butt of jokes right across the college football panacea.

What we saw yesterday from both teams embodies what we’re now seeing as to the direction that programs are now taking. While one is moving forwards the other seems to be moving backwards and into an abyss mediocrity.

Bowden’s team has been anything but a complete anathema from one week to the next. They’ve at times, either been playing with a great deal of resolve but seemingly performing like a blind man in the midst of a minefield , the next. If it’s not been blowing itself up with its mediocre play, it has seen fit to let their opponents walk over them like a doormat. And for that to be happening at this juncture to a Bobby Bowden coached is very much akin to seeing Superman without his cape , enveloped in a vat of kryptonite. Now comes the hard part, what is Bowden now to do in terms of an encore ? Or will be in fact be around for an encore ? Such has been the speculation concerning Bowden’s immediate future and that of the program.

Well, the game itself proved to be an eventful one for Urban Meyer’s team as they completely outplayed Florida State in every facet of the game . The end result was a thoroughly deserving 37-10 defeat of the Seminoles at the hands of Florida, at ‘The Swamp’ , in what would be the senior , Tim Tebow’s last game as a Gator, in Gainesville. And Tebow’s play was exemplary and what we’ve now come to expect of the player. He’s not only a leader but he , himself , leads by example ,even when things are said to be going well , or not going well for the team.

Florida quarterback Tim Tebow is swarmed by fans after an NCAA college football game against Florida State in Gainesville, Fla., Saturday, Nov. 28, 2009.  Florida won 37-10. picture appears  courtesy  of AP/Photo/ Phelan M Ebenhack ..........
Florida quarterback Tim Tebow is swarmed by fans after an NCAA college football game against Florida State in Gainesville, Fla., Saturday, Nov. 28, 2009. Florida won 37-10. picture appears courtesy of AP/Photo/ Phelan M Ebenhack ..........

And there are those out there who’d question whether or not he’s an NFL ready quarterback ? My question to them, are the likes of JaMarcus Russell,Brady Quinn, Matthew Stafford or Josh Freeman NFL ready quarterbacks ? Because the last time I checked none of these players have won anything of note, or actually led their teams with anything near distinction. But yet there are idiots out there who’d question the ability of this player. And with the asinine statements of former Miami Hurricanes and Dallas Cowboys’ coach, Jimmy Johnson make the asinine statement of stating that Tebow doesn’t have what it takes to make it in the NFL. When last I checked , Johnson had Dan Marino and the Miami Dolphins on the wrong end of a 65-7 ass whupping at the hands of the Jacksonville Jaguars that’d bring about the end to his coaching career in the NFL. Never mind the fact that as a coach, Johnson was nothing more than a facilitator, as a coach in the NFL. He merely delegated and deferred to others , who would do his bidding. And even if he’s the coach of two Supebowl winning teams. Johnson upon his retirement, has done little to suggest that anything that he states really has any credence when it comes to the NFL. He’s merely a glorified and sartorially dressed glove puppet alongside the other idiots who provide analysis on Fox’s eponymous pre and post-game NFL show. In watching Johnson and his colleagues on the show, is akin to watching several drunks talk about their days of binge drinking and the fact that they actually could remember events from when they were at times in a drunken stupor.

Florida head coach Urban Meyer, left, and Florida State head coach Bobby Bowden meet after an NCAA college football game in Gainesville, Fla., Saturday, Nov. 28, 2009.  Florida won 37-10.               picture appears courtesy of AP/Photo/  Phelan M  Ebenhack ...................
Florida head coach Urban Meyer, left, and Florida State head coach Bobby Bowden meet after an NCAA college football game in Gainesville, Fla., Saturday, Nov. 28, 2009. Florida won 37-10. picture appears courtesy of AP/Photo/ Phelan M Ebenhack ...................

As to what now awaits Florida , well that is now predicated upon how they will deal with the fate that they aspire to carve out for themselves . And as we all know, you create your own luck and not have it placed within your lap by others. It’s not only about how you arrive but the fact that you’ve arrived in style .

The Guys With The Biggest Mouths In The Room Aren’t Always The Bravest Or The Brightest ……………… !

The Guys With The Biggest Mouths In The Room Aren’t Always The Bravest Or Brightest

Well it came down to nothing more than having your backside smacked because of your posturing . And when it was all said and done a number of teams were extremely lucky to escape a fate that could’ve been far worse than envisaged.

Notre  Dame  quarterback  Jimmy Clausen  and  team  coach  Charlie  Weis   discuss  the   options   for the  last   play   of the  game   against   the  USC (Trojans).   Notre  Dame   would  go   on   to  lose  the   game   34-27   when   Clausen's   last   ditch   attempted   pass   was   an  incomplete   into the endzone.     The   game  was   played   in  South  Bend,  Indiana,.  picture appears  courtesy of   ap/photo/ Michael  Conroy   ..................
Notre Dame quarterback Jimmy Clausen and team coach Charlie Weis discuss the options for the last play of the game against the USC (Trojans). Notre Dame would go on to lose the game 34-27 when Clausen's last ditch attempted pass was an incomplete into the endzone. The game was played in South Bend, Indiana,. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Michael Conroy ..................

USC (Trojans) escaped by the skin of their teeth , by beating Notre Dame 34-27 . This was the game where the Fighting Irish would give the Trojans a fight. And in many ways they did . But can we now have Lou Holtz and NBC as apologists for the program stop with the belly aching as to the relevancy of the program ? A win they say would give Notre Dame coach, Charlie Weis, something of a respite for those who ate calling for his head to be placed on a pike.

Weis seen here discussing his landing the recruitment of Manti Te’o . One would think that the Notre Dame roster is replete with All Americans ? With the exception of Golden Tate , there isn’t much on this team to be get excited about !

And I’m given to believe that because this program is meandering aimlessly nowhere under Weis’ watch.That he’s made it better than it was , under his predecessor, Tyrone Willingham ? The only reason that Weis has lasted this long , is merely from the fact that he brings in the ‘big bucks’ via the boosters and from the Fightin’ Irish alumni across the country. And it certainly hasn’t hurt the program Head of NBC Sports , Dick Ebersol is a Notre Dame grad. How else can one explain the fact that they’ve seen fit to plow millions of dollars into covering Notre Dame , whilst getting little in return via a tangible onfield product ? But then again what they’re now serving up on NBC isn’t all that great to begin with. I mean, when 5 hours of primetime television is devoted to a revamped ‘The Jay Leno Show’ that has now become so stale that even the vultures no longer bother to circle the entrails. You know that there’s got to be something wrong with their programming to begin with ! And if anyone is of the opinion that because Notre Dame recently appeared in a non-descript ‘bowl game’ , such as the Hawaii Bowl (2008) , it adds to the program’s luster. Then think again because if anything , it only adds to their embarrassment to begin with. Especially given Weis’ track record since his arrival in South Bend. One could surmise that they’ve greatly underachieved with Weis at the helm ?

Gators'  running  back   Jeffery  Demps  celebrates with   teammate  , wide  receiver    David Nelson,  after   scoring   a  10- yard  touchdown  in  the  fourth  quarter   against   Arkansas     played   in  Gainesville  ,  Fl.   The   Gators  would   go  on  to   defeat  the  Razorbacks  23-20   in  a hard  fought  game.   picture  appears  courtesy  of  ap/photo/ John  Raoux    .....................
Gators' running back Jeffery Demps celebrates with teammate , wide receiver David Nelson, after scoring a 10- yard touchdown in the fourth quarter against Arkansas played in Gainesville , Fl. The Gators would go on to defeat the Razorbacks 23-20 in a hard fought game. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ John Raoux .....................

On the other hand the number one ranked Florida (Gators) defeated Arkansas (Razorbacks) 23-20, with a field goal against a 25 point underdog. And if you’re of the opinion that Florida still warrants being ranked # 1 after Saturday’s erratic display. Then you’re sadly mistaken. Florida barely escaped by the skin of their teeth and though as they say “ ……. a win is a win “ . At the end of the day it’s how you win that really does count – Florida won ugly ! Need I say anymore ?

Purdue   wide receiever  Adam  Wolf (26)   reacts  after   recovering  a  fumble   by   Buckeyes'  wide  receiver    Ray Small  (82)  on  a  punt   return   during   the   second  quarter    of the   game .  It   was   one   opf  several   turnovers  committed  during   the   game  by  the  Buckeyes   and   it  led  to  their   unraveling   ensuring  the   loss to  the  Boilermakers  28-16   in  the   game   played  in  West  Lafayette , Ind,.    picture  appears   courtesy  of   ap/photo/  Darron  Cummings   .........................
Purdue wide receiever Adam Wolf (26) reacts after recovering a fumble by Buckeyes' wide receiver Ray Small (82) on a punt return during the second quarter of the game . It was one opf several turnovers committed during the game by the Buckeyes and it led to their unraveling ensuring the loss to the Boilermakers 28-16 in the game played in West Lafayette , Ind,. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Darron Cummings .........................

Can someone explain to me why it is, year in , year out, there is a cry that the Ohio State (Buckeyes) are lauded as being a team that’s worth taking notice of ? Hardly a worthwhile endorsement when the program has become so passé. Having played the Purdue (Boilermakers) on Saturday the team and its quarterback , Terrell Pryor became unraveled against Purdue. Now the Buckeye fans can stop with the inane stupidity that they have athletes and with a great deal of athleticism on their team. There are geriatrics now residing in residential homes who show more poise than certain members of the Buckeyes’ roster. Purdue defeated Ohio State 28-16 and their national ambitions essentially, has gone up in flames. But then , it’s better to go up in flames now, rather than being embarrassed on the national stage in a national championship game.

Hokies'  quarterback  Tyrod  Taylor  (5)  lies  on  the  field  in  disbelief  after   Virginia  Tech  misses  a  two   point  conversion  in the  latter   part  of the   fourth  quarter   against  the   Georgia  Tech  (Yellowjackets).   It  was  a  game of   missed   opportunities   for   Virginia  Tech.    picture   appears  courtesy  of  ap/photo/  John  Bazemore   .......................
Hokies' quarterback Tyrod Taylor (5) lies on the field in disbelief after Virginia Tech misses a two point conversion in the latter part of the fourth quarter against the Georgia Tech (Yellowjackets). It was a game of missed opportunities for Virginia Tech. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ John Bazemore .......................

Well if ever there wasn’t a time for the Virginia Tech (Hokies) to implode, then this wasn’t it ! As they lost to their Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) rivals Georgia Tech (Yellow Jackets) 28-23 . That would suggest they’re out of contention for the ACC championship. Well for the # 4 ranked Hokies this makes their season somewhat irrelevant . But make of it what you will , as the college football season now embarks on its latter half. Of this we can be sure however , you can brag and strut all you want. But if you’re unable to back up that talk by walking the walk , then you might as well keep your mouth shut.

Alabama  coach,  Nick  Saban  is   greeted   by  his   opposite  number    Steve Spurrier  of   South  Carolina   after the  game   between  their   two   teams.    Alabama   overwhelmed     South  Carolina   20-6    in  a   very   lopsided  game   played   at  Bryant   Denny  Stadium  in Tuscaloosa  ,  Alabama ,.     picture  appears  courtesy   of   ap/photo/  Dave Martin     .........................
Alabama coach, Nick Saban is greeted by his opposite number Steve Spurrier of South Carolina after the game between their two teams. Alabama overwhelmed South Carolina 20-6 in a very lopsided game played at Bryant Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa , Alabama ,. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Dave Martin .........................

Now comes the rub , who now at this juncture has the real legitimacy as being the best team in college football ? Could it be Nick Saban’s #2 ranked Alabama (Crimson Tide) ? Who crushed his erstwhile counterpart , Steve Spurrier‘s , South Carolina (Gamecocks), 20-6 . Or quite possibly some other team that the pundits have overlooked ? Let’s just say the polls and the fact that a computer plays a part in the adjudication doesn’t give us all a great deal of joy to begin with. Computers are best used for working out complex algorithmic equations, blogging and for the deviants amongst us , looking at porn</strong. When it becomes part of the panacea of the makeup of the BCS polls . Then it becomes something of an annoyance.

It Still Has Its Dangers Be It On The Field Of Play Or Off It ………….

One of the most staggering stories that I’ve heard in a long time came about the USC Trojans’ running back Stafon Johnson. The tragic accident that has taken place and has now left the player in a critical but stable condition, should remind us of the dangers of sports as a recreational passtime. Be it on the field of play or off it.

USC tailback  Stafon  Johnson  (13)  seen  here   on the  sidelines  during  a   Trojans'   practice  .    picture  appears courtesy  of   .............
USC tailback Stafon Johnson (13) seen here on the sidelines during a Trojans' practice . picture appears courtesy of .............

Johnson, a junior with the Trojans , is a highly competitive and exceptional player. He does nothing by half measures and that’s perhaps one of the reasons he’s so well liked by his fellow teammates and by his coach Pete Carroll. The incident as it occurred is something of a mystery. What we do know is that while working out in the campus gymnasium with the team’s strength and conditioning coach, an unfortunate accident took place. Johnson at the time was said to be bench pressing weights when his hand slipped and the bar-bell came down across his throat , crushing his larynx. Assistance was sought and the player was rushed to the California Hospital Medical Center. He’s had to undergo several hours of intricate surgery to repair whatever damage had been sustained . But the belief is that the player will survive the injuries sustained and make a full recovery. As to what form that will take , is clearly open to intense speculation at this moment in time.

It came to be known as ‘The Drive’.

If one remembers Johnson was an invaluable member and contributed greatly in USC’s 18-15 defeat of Ohio State in week 2 of the 2009-10 college season. Joe McKnight and Johnson made the victory all the more poignant for Trojans’ fans over their arch rivals.

While we can all appreciate that incidents such as this, though rare. It gives us all a sense of our own vulnerabilities and that of the athlete at play, be it on or off the field of play. At this moment in time , my thoughts goes out to the player , his immediate family and that of the program.

Courtesy Yahoo Sports and Associated Press

USC’s Johnson has throat surgery after accident

By Greg Meacham AP Sports Writer

LOS ANGELES (AP)—Southern California tailback Stafon Johnson is unlikely to play again this season after a falling weight bar crushed his neck and larynx.

The senior who scored the No. 7 Trojans’ go-ahead touchdown against Ohio State two weeks ago was bench-pressing when the bar slipped from his right hand and fell onto his throat.

Johnson was in critical but stable condition late Monday night after more than seven hours of surgery, said Katreena Salgado, a spokeswoman for California Hospital Medical Center.

He was treated for crushing injuries to his neck as well as severe injuries to his larynx, said the hospital’s trauma medical director, Dr. Gudata Hinika.

It’s unlikely Johnson will be able to play again this season, but his prognosis is good and doctors expect him to make a full recovery, Hinika said in a statement released by the hospital.

Johnson is the Trojans’ second-leading rusher with 157 yards, and he leads USC (3-1, 1-1 Pac-10) with five touchdowns. He led USC in rushing last season with 705 yards and nine touchdowns, but has become into the Trojans’ short-yardage specialist this season behind starter Joe McKnight.

“It hit him with a lot of force, and it hurt him,” coach Pete Carroll said after the Trojans’ brief practice Monday night. “No broken bones as far as I understand, but he’s got some damage in there somewhere, and they’re working it out, trying to figure out what it is.”

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Any sporting endeavor has its dangers and for the fans in attendance who are there to watch their teams do battle . It can’t be lost on them ,that a player is only but one hit away from being seriously injured. While the dangers are there and the players are willing to subject themselves to those inherent dangers. It’s also not lost on them how grave those dangers can be. But yet like the gladiators of ancient times they’re prepared to do it for the glory and the willingness to sacrifice themselves for the team .

Teammates  James  Wilson, left  and  Matt  Patchan  look  over  Tim  Tebow   as  he  lays  on  the  ground  motionless  having  been  sacked.    The  player  was   unresponsive  for  several    minutes  and   had  to be   led   from    the  field  having     incurred  a  concussion.       picture  appears  courtesy  of  ap/photo/   Ed  Reinke  ....................
Teammates James Wilson, left and Matt Patchan look over Tim Tebow as he lays on the ground motionless having been sacked. The player was unresponsive for several minutes and had to be led from the field having incurred a concussion. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Ed Reinke ....................

For the #1 ranked Florida Gators and their Heisman Trophy winning quarterback , Tim Tebow. They face a dilemma of a different sort. The player coming off yet another resounding defeat of another non-descript program,in Kentucky 41-7. During the game , Tebow in the third quarter was tackled and sacked by Wildcats’ defensive end Taylor Wyndham . Having fallen with the full weight of the defensive end on top of him. Tebow’s head came in contact with that of his teammate’s Marcus Gilbert’s leg, sending his neck back violently upon contact. In the ensuing incident , Tebow suffered a concussion and lay motionless on the field for several minutes unresponsive.

Tebow is   helped  off  the field   as  a  stretcher  lies  in the  background.   The  player  was  determined  to  have   suffered   a  second   degree  concussion     during   the  game.     picture  appears  courtesy  of ap/photo/  Ed  Reinke  .........................
Tebow is helped off the field as a stretcher lies in the background. The player was determined to have suffered a second degree concussion during the game. picture appears courtesy of ap/photo/ Ed Reinke .........................

Courtesy Yahoo Sports and Associated Press

No.1 Florida wins but Tebow injured

By Will Graves AP Sports Writer

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP)—With one scary hit on Tim Tebow, the fate of No. 1 Florida — and really, the entire complexion of the college football season—could have changed.

The Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback was knocked out of Florida’s 41-7 victory against Kentucky after a hard shot to the head in the third quarter, and taken by ambulance to a hospital.

“I don’t know, I think it’s a concussion,” Florida coach Urban Meyer said. “I think he’ll be all right.

“He took a pretty good shot.”

Tebow was scheduled to stay overnight in the hospital, Florida spokesman Steve McClain said.

The Gators were leading 31-7 and driving deep in Kentucky territory when Tebow was sacked by Kentucky defensive end Taylor Wyndham on a vicious but clean hit. As he fell back with Wyndham on top of him, Tebow’s head struck teammate Marcus Gilbert’s leg, violently bending his neck forward.

Tebow, a tank of a quarterback at 245 pounds, lay motionless for several minutes while Commonwealth Stadium fell silent. He sat up with some help then slowly made his way off the field to a loud ovation. Florida’s medical staff attended to him on the bench and his parents came down from the stands to join him.

He was eventually carted off the field with concussion-like symptoms, vomiting several times.

Florida is off next week, then plays at LSU on Oct. 10. It’s probably the toughest game on Florida’s regular-season schedule and would be even tougher without Tebow.

A third national title in four seasons for Florida, a second Heisman for Tebow, all that becomes iffy if his injury causes him to miss games. Oddly, Saturday started with questions about Tebow’s availability because of a respiratory illness.

Meyer said Tebow had just one question after the hit.

“He asked me ‘Did I hold onto the ball?”’ Meyer said. “I told him he did and he winked at me and said ‘It’s great to be a Gator.”
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The player it is said after the incident wasn’t completely aware of his surroundings. Though his initial response to a question asked of him , was ……” did I hold unto the ball ? ” Thereafter , he was taken to a nearby hospital in Lexington, Kentucky to undergo a battery of neurological testing for the concussion sustained. As it is , with any concussion it can’t always be determined how serious they are. Especially one of the variety that was sustained by Tim Tebow. Second degree concussions do have a tendency of lingering or they can just as quickly disappear.

But already questions are being asked of the Florida Gators’ coach , Urban Meyer , as to whether or not the player will be available to play in their next scheduled game. If anything the utmost priority ought to be concerned health and well being of the player. Rather than whether or not he’ll be ready to play in their next game. It’s not as if he’d just sustained a sprained ankle or a pulled groin muscle. Those type of injuries can be easily overcome through the usual efforts. In the case of a concussion they can have a lasting effect-long after his career has come to an end. And though no one at this juncture would suggest that the player’s collegiate career is about to come to an abrupt halt. Missing a game or two mightn’t be out of the question , as to what’s best for his long term future.

Would that sacrifice be too dear a price to pay for the program at this juncture ? Well for the Gators’ fans and the program that just might be the case. As to the player , himself , only he can answer that question at this juncture.
The chances are that he’ll be prepared to take that risk should he be given the all clear by the medical staff to do so. But then again , we’ve seen cases where the medical profession have made mistakes concerning incidents of this nature.

In this case do you feel it’s worth the risk for Tebow to make an immediate return to the field of play ? And if so why do you feel that way ? And in the case of Trojans’ running back Stafon Johson . Have you ever heard of an accident of this type ever taking place under such conditions ? Your comments on this topic would make for an interesting discussion . So by all means do leave a comment. I’ll look forward to reading and then replying to each .