Thursday, August 28, 2008

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

College Football

Ah yes, the smell of leaves and the crisp cool winds of autumn. Well, okay... who am I kidding? It is August in Arizona and its still crazy-hot here. Anyway college football is upon us and that means good times. I'll be attending the Arizona State- Northern Arizona "rivalry" game this Saturday and I hope it stays within 14pts at least 'til halftime. I'm going courtesy of Justwinbaby, and so I plan to enjoy the free grub provided for his fancy loge seats.

Time for a quiz!

Ohio State is occasionally derided by Pac-10 fanboys for playing a weak in-state schedule before the Big 10 portion of the season kicks in. But Ohio State does occasionally lose those in-state games. Name the last Ohio school to beat the Buckeyes. Click HERE for the answer.

John 3:16

"For [Ken Whisenhunt] so loved the world [of Cardinals fans] that he gave his only begotten [quarterback], that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life [as a sportsfan]."

Well, Ken, count me in as an apostate. I have lost my faith in your chosen one, the eternally-juvenile Matt Leinart. And as the prophets preach this morning that Leinart still has the starting job, I look to you for guidance. And your wisdom? "It was unfortunate that Matt has to see those [rumors of his demotion]."

Unfortunate? Let me suggest some other things Matt should see and learn:

-- Dude, you have the arm strength of a young tyrannosaur.
-- You are dumber than Jake Plummer -- when Jake was still in high school.
-- Hot tubs are skeevy places -- better check for cooties and other STDs.
-- There is a 40 second clock running between most plays; it's pretty important to start your plays before it ticks down.
-- "USC Alum" -- oxymoron or just moronic?

Monday, August 25, 2008

Deadspin is Dead On

Deadspin counts down the "Top 10 Reasons the Little League World Series Sucks" HERE.

They are right on the mark. The whole thing is just crazy. 10 year old kids playing year around; the finals televised on ESPN; the playoffs televised on ESPN. Can you say "Way too much exposure at a young age"? Plus, the baseball isn't very good. They're KIDS. I know some love it because it brings baseball to its roots-- kids having fun. But this is SERIOUS BUSINESS and it doesn't look like much fun at all. It needs to end.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

No QB Controversy Here

After tonight's debacle against the Oakland Raiders, are there any Cardinals fans who really think Matt Leinart should be the starting QB? Anyone? Leinart showed that his summer of beer-bongs with underage girls did not prepare him for the "tough" Oakland Defense. Three Interceptions in the first half is no way to inspire confidence Matt. Worse, his passes just looked terrible. They fluttered and floated and he really seemed to be just throwing the ball up for grabs. "Go Long!" may work in backyard football, but it clearly doesn't cut it in the NFL.

Kurt Warner is an experienced pro who proved last year that he "still has it." He may not be the "QB of the future," but he is the QB of now because he is the one who has demonstrated he can lead the Arizona Cardinals to a win.

Monday, August 18, 2008

The Medal Count*

And the question remains, who will "win" the Olympics. Oh, I know, guys like Pierre de Coubertin, the founder of the modern Olympics, believed that "the important thing is not to win, but to take part." But in more recent years the Olympics have been led by swell fellas like Juan Antonio Samaranch, the falangist apologist for the Franco regime in Spain. He was all about Olympic glory, and it's all due to him that this year we need an asterisk in the standings.
As a jingoistic American, I question China's lead in the gold medal standings and likely top finish in the overall count. And I'm not talking about the nine-year-old gymnasts, either. Rather, I'm talking about those entertainment set pieces that Samaranch put in the Games, things like rhythmic gymnastics and synchronized swimming and diving. (Click here for a link to the medal winners by year, with year of introduction of the event.) Now, I grant you that those events (and, dare we say it during Beijing 2008, beer, er, ping pong) take skill and fitness, but they lack the sustained endurance necessary to qualify, from the perspective of my armchair, as a true sport worthy of a medal, such as the marquee events like track and field and individual swimming and diving as well as more sparsely-attended events like rowing and the sweet science of boxing. And it's not just areas where the Chinese may rack up the score. The keirin track cycling race is fun to watch, and those crazy European dudes spin like mad, but when your whole race comes down to 6.5 seconds of energy, that's show biz not sport.

UFL for Justice

There have been some interesting columns in the past year about the high-profile failures of certain quarterbacks in the NFL. In particular, Byron Leftwich, Duante Culpepper, and other black quarterbacks met with huge success, but then when injured or less effective were quickly demoted and then cut. Now they stuggle to find jobs as back up QBs. Their plight was contrasted with the plight of oft-injured, weak-armed, but likable white guy Chad Pennington. As soon as he was cut by the Jets (after they landed Brett Favre) Chad was quickly snapped up by the Miami Dolphins.

So some are wondering "what gives?" Read the column by the National Sports Review HERE. It raises a number of valid points. Though Culpepper hasn't looked that great since he came back from his knee injury.

The UFL suddenly emerges as not only an alternative to the NFL, but a new opportunity for black quarterbacks who find themselves on the outside looking in. NFL Hall of Fame QB Warren Moon had to start his career with Edmonton of the CFL. It was only after he had stellar success there that he was able to play QB in the NFL. posits that perhaps the UFL will provide the same opportunity to guys like Leftwich. Read the UFL column HERE.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Two Cheers for Kobe

Although the jury never even went out, we can now concede that Kobe Bryant is, at the very least, an elegant rapist.
For starters, he is leading the American basketballers in just being plain old sports fans, parading with the other athletes and cheering for Michael Phelps, even going so far as to pose with Phelps' mom and to lead the swim team in cheers. (This is a far cry from one of the early Dream Teams, when Hakeem Olajuwon had to elbow Gary Payton on the medal stand to get him to stop his jawing.)
He is also, let's remember, a tri-lingual American [seriously, there can't be more than about 75 tri-lingual Americans in the entire country], giving interviews to the world press in Italian, Spanish and English. (Even better, he refuses to speak French). This is a remarkable skill, and makes Kobe a remarkably well-rounded athlete who can at least attempt to fend off the perception of American insularity and nativism.
There remains, of course, that weekend on the slopes in Aspen. Whatever happened there (he raped her), he certainly forgot the Cassanova creed of leaving his women contented and wanting more. Perhaps Aspen was truly an aberration for an otherwise good guy; to be on the safe side, Kobe, stay away from the wanna-be ski bunnies while in China.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Hammer Time

The Spanish Olympic Basketball Team is pretty good. In fact the team has several NBA players. Here's their team picture (no joke):

Don't worry, there's a reason for the team "slant-eyes" picture.
"It was something like supposed to be funny or something but never offensive in any way," Spain's Pau Gasol, center for the Los Angeles Lakers, said. "I'm sorry if anybody thought or took it the wrong way and thought that it was offensive." The photographer asked them to pose like that, according to Jose Manuel Calderon, a Raptors point guard.

Wait, Gosol is sorry if anyone thought it was offensive. I'm sorry Pau, but that is no apology. You don't get to qualify your apologees. Either you're sorry or you're not. The photo is offensive. Not to mention, stupid, juvenile, etc.

Time for David Stern to tell the NBA players on the Spanish team to apologize. Then he should order them to sensitivity classes or suspension if they don't go. The NBA needs to send a message that that crap don't fly here.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Who Invited the EuroTrash?

Ahh, monsieur Bernard, the fastest swimmer in the world, non? No.

Check out our boys who crushed the Frenchies in the 100 meter freestyle relay. Big words from the Frenchies, non? Well, we've heard those before, haven't we, Monsieur Maginot?

I'm not really even sure why France is still a country. I mean, come on: since the advent of democracy in America, France has had one Nazi puppet, two emperors, three kings and five separate Republiques.

Maybe France should start to compete on some unified team of all their allies: the Rwandan genocidaires; their Libyan frère, whom they protected from the U.S. strike in '86; and the other assorted Mobutus and Papa Docs out there.

And I'm really starting to get annoyed that French remains an official language of the Olympics. Some of the participants even use French for their official names year-round. Timor-Leste hardly seems like a tough-guy nation respected by its peers; sounds more like the little guy that wandered around with the warthog in The Lion King.

So, Bernard. Get your surrender hand ready. And shut your bouche.

Editor's Note #1: Bernard did indeed win the 100 free. Even mouthy guys have their day.

Editor's Note #2: Russia steamrolled right past Sarkozy's cease-fire, so I hope he at least taught the Georgians how to surrender.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Tiananmen was a "crackdown"?

Nice to see that the National Broadcasting Company has become China's b****. During the Opening Ceremonies Jim Lampley, Bob Costas and even Tom Brokaw chose to highlight the perseverance of China in the face of protests rather than the underlying reasons for the protests themselves. And when they did talk about the "occupation" of Tibet or "genocide" in Darfur, those fighting words were mysteriously blurred out of the broadcast. Take a gander below.

Listen, I'm all for recognizing the glorious inventions of China, like the Great Wall, calligraphy, fireworks and pasta. I can even appreciate on a theoretical level the land reform efforts in Yenan after the Long March -- the only time land reform has ever been accomplished in an equitable manner with regard for due process -- but NBC needs to take the good with the bad.

Bob Costas at one point referred to Tiananmen as a "crackdown". Don't you think "massacre" would be a better word for the killing of protesters? The only remotely analogous American violence against peaceful protesters is Bull Connor's dogs and hoses in Birmingham, and Connor has now been reviled by three generations of Americans. The U.S. press would never permit a whitewashing of the violence in Birmingham, and should not sugarcoat the execution of students in China.

And finally, let's talk about the little kid walking in with Yao, the tiny earthquake survivor. Hey, that's a great story. But I swear to you, Bob Costas actually seemed to believe that nonsense that China is spinning about how that teeny little boy crawled his way out of the rubble and then went back to help dig out his classmates. C'mon, reporters and commentators, you know a load of crap when you see it. That's like supporting the Cuban line that Elian Gonzalez is a student leader, or the American military's contention that Jessica Lynch went down with guns ablazing. Let the little kid have his day, but don't perpetuate a myth.

Still, the Games are pretty cool and the Chinese fans are real sportsmen and -women. I'm going back to watch the swimming.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Spitz is a baby

Yahoo is reporting (HERE) that Olympic Legend Mark Spitz feels hurt and snubbed because he wasn't invited to be there in person if his swimming records are broken in Beijing.

Spitz whines:
"I never got invited. You don't go to the Olympics just to say, I am going to go. Especially because of who I am," Spitz told AFP in Hong Kong.
"I am going to sit there and watch Michael Phelps break my record anonymously? That's almost demeaning to me. It is not almost—it is."

The article continues:
Spitz, whose brief stint in show business in the 1970s never quite matched his success in the pool, said he attended the Athens Olympics four years ago—when Phelps also tried to break the record.
"They did not once put my face on television," he recalled. "But as soon as the swimming was over, and Michael Phelps didn't break my record, every time I went to beach volley, they put my face on the volleyballs."

My God, what a egomaniac. He's bitter because HE isn't the star of this olympics? Damn, Mark, if you want to go, then go. But don't get all worked up because they didn't give you the key to the city or "put your face on television." Jeez, what a baby.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Woo Hoo!

The NFL Season is upon us (finally!)

I'll be attending the Cardinals-Saints game tomorrow (inexplicably set for a Thursday night) along with a bunch of Cowboys fans who were forced to buy this pre-season ticket to get their precious Cowboys tickets. I'm the guy who will be cheering for Warner to beat out Leinart. Regardless, it should be fun.

Other NFL Stuff-

My take on Favre? I understand he changed his mind. That's fine. But how can he think that the Packers would or should let him go to Minnesota. What a prima-dona. Let them trade you to Tampa and be done with it!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Olympics 2008 -China

As you can see anytime you try to watch sports on TV, the Olympics is about to start in China. I love the Olympics. Nothing better than some good old fashioned Nationalism.

But remember: China sucks. Boycott the shows and the advertisers who support China's actions in Tibet by paying money to be seen on the telecast.

More on the boycott HERE.