1. Georgia Thoughts
a. Heartbreak city in South Carolina's capital city Saturday nite for the Dawgs. I was in Augusta Saturday night, why didn't I drive one more hour and watch this game?
b. The way the Dawgs have been turning the ball over made me realize we are still a long way from being great. Mark Fox is doing a tremendous job but it's going to take a while to start winning consistently, especially on the road. However, I know watch every game knowing we have a chance.
c. A lot of UGA
d. UGA might be one point guard away from blowing the lid off of this program.
e. I love how both Geno Atkins and Jeff Owens went from 3-4th round picks to potential late first round pick with their performace this week. I love when former Dawgs perform well.
f. For weeks the AJC was all over the Dawgs for not having a defensive coordinator in place during the recruiting time table. Tennessee does not have one and I doubt they get one by Saturday, where is the uproar. And you wonder why your paper is losing money?
g.The Gym Dog program is starting to slip, so far only one win and for the first time in program history they have lost to Auburn. On the bright side we are still 64-1 All-time against the War
h Have I mention that I hate Auburn? It's like Clemson but without a lake.
2. Colts Thoughts
a. Can we play this game already? Sunday at 6:25 can not get here soon enough. Times like this make me wish for West Coast time and a 3:25 kickoff. No wonder more people live in California than any other state.
b. How much Manning talk are we going to get this week. He is my favorite NFL player and I think it might be to much for me.
c. I am starting to get worried about Freeney especially with reports that he has a torn ligament in the ankle.
d. Not a big fan of the Pro Bowl players going to Miami a day early but both teams had to do it. Also the Colts and the NFL compromised, Colts Pro Bowl players were not available for media, which allowed them to practice at home Sunday before leaving.
e. Hopefully Gary Brackett will use the Super Bowl stage to become more of a household name. He is a major reason the Colts have only allowed 20 points in two postseason games.
f. If they can hold the Saints to 10 I love the Colts next Sunday night.
g. It should also be mentioned the Colts have yet to allow a point in the second half this postseason. How come ESPN has not given us that stat.
h. Two weeks ago SI gave us this read on Jim Irsay and yesterday the Indy paper gave us this article. Very good look at how Colts are now considered a model franchise for the NFL. They have also transferred a basketball state to a football state.
i. Mr. Irsay is also taking the whole front office 200 employees plus a guest for a total of 400 people to Miami for the Super Bowl. Irsay is providing his employees complementary airfare, four nights in a hotel, two tickets to the game and ground transportation. The group, which leaves Thursday and returns Monday, will enjoy a company reception, brunch and postgame party.
3. College Basketball Thoughts
a. What kind of world are we leaving in where in the latest AP men's basketball poll, Coastal Carolina and Harvard got one vote and North Carolina got none?
b. I still can not believe this Syracuse team lost to LeMoyne in a preseason exhibition game. They look like a legit title contender and Wes Johnson is a pretty special player.
c. How weird is it going to be when Jim Boeheim is no longer the coach for the Cuse. For 34 years he has had an incredible run and I do not see it ending any time soon.
d. Speaking of incredible the Kansas-Kansas St game was something special. The Jayhawks are now 31-2 against the Wildcats since the inception of the Big 12.
e. Kansas will now be #1 for the second time this season and this team is starting to remind me of the one two years ago that won me some nice March Madness cash.
f. Is their a better 1-2 punch on any team in America than Kansas's Sherron Collins and Cole Aldrich?
g. Speaking of Kansas State when did they get good in hoops? When did Bramladge Coliseum start becoming such a great scene for college hoops?
h. Is it time to add Frank Martin to the list of great college hoop coaches? He has done an awesome job in the little Apple. (K-State is located in Manhattan, Kansas for those that did not get the reference)
i. I wonder before Saturday in Eugene, Oregon has a graduate manager affected the outcome more than USC manager Stan Holt. USC had just completed a 9-0 run to tie the game 47-47 before Oregon's Tajuan Porter scored on a scoop shot. Then, with 4:35 left in the game, official Bobby McRoy sprinted to scorer’s table, pointing at Holt. Minutes later, Holt had left the sideline, but by that time, the game was pretty much over.
j. Here is USC coach Kevin O'Neils response and it is not good for Stan Holt. “That’s on me, and that will be rectified – it already has been – he’s gone, that’s incomprehensible to me, in a two-point game, that our manager would get a technical foul. It’s unforgivable, it’s unprofessional. I apologized to our team for it, also.’’
k. Kentucky already has every recruiting advantage compared to every SEC school so do they really need to bring out Lebron James?
l. If the Kentucky upperclassmen played like the freshmen they would never lose.
m.I have a hard time believing that Kentucky's win on Saturday was the Wildcats third win in their last nine games against Vanderbilt.
n.In the middle of conference basketball schedule how does Georgia Tech play Kentucky State?
o. Watched a majority of the 2nd half of Florida at Tennessee and Mr. Chism was pretty dominant like always. Chism (16 points, 11 rebounds) recorded his fourth double-double of the season as the Volunteers won their sixth straight against the Gators.
p.Few things....how has Tennessee won 6 in a row over the Gators? How long has been Wayne Chism been at Tennessee?
q. ESPN has a great look at the coaching trees of Jim Calhoun, Tom Izzo, Mike Krzyewski, Mike Montgomery, Rick Pitino, and Gary Williams.
4. College Hoops Power 5
1) Kansas - I can not say enough about this team after such a tough win in front of a hostile crowd.
2) Kentucky - Love the thought of the potential Sherron Collins John Wall matchup for the National Championship.
3) Syracuse - Did this team really lose to LeMoyne?
4) Villanova - Plays Seton Hall tonight at home then back to back road games at Georgetown Saturday and West Virginia next Monday. We will soon know more about Nova.
5) Michigan State - At Wisconsin and Illinois before the Boilers visit Sparty next Monday.
5. Football Thoughts (College and Pro)
a. If baseball's All-Star Game was treated with the same lack of respect as the Pro Bowl, ESPN would not know what to do in ripping baseball and Bud Selig.
b. Baseball's 2010 All-Star Game Theme this year should be...."Our players want to be here"
c. Back to the Pro Bowl for a second, the U seems to get a lot of guys in the league and when they are in the league they are stars.
d. Ray Rice's base salary is $470,000...he might have been the only player playing for the winners share.
e. The winners get 45K, the losers get 22.5K. No wonder no one wants to show up and play (hint at the sarcasm).
f. Saw this stat late Sunday night, nearly 40 percent of the players originally selected for the game didn't play.
g. Pretty interesting Senior Bowl week that seemed to focus entirely on one person. A little to over the top for me but he is a polarizing figure.
h. If Urban Meyer is such a great coach you think he could have fixed Tebow's throwing motion in four years...am I right?
i. What is the deal with Alabama linemen with first round potential showing up to pre NFL draft events out of shape?
j. You have not seen the pictures of Terrance Cody visit deadspin.com and do a search. You will be shocked what you find.
k. I love the story of former Cincy receiver Mardy Gilyard, who was one of the stars of the Senior Bowl for catching a 32 yard touchdown and 103 yards overall. For those that do not know the Gilyard story he was academically ineligible in 2006 so he lost his scholarship and took odds jobs ranging from cutlery salesman to construction to pay his out of state tuition. He eventually won his scholarship back and might be looking at a nice pay day.
l. Very intrigued with what scouts are going to do with LeGarrette Blount. He has the skills to perform on next level but how many organizations are going to give him the chance.
m. It only takes one organization to believe in a player and he has a chance to do something special. This goes for any player in the draft.
n. Starting to hear some McNabb to Arizona rumors and this move would make sense. Minnesota probably makes more sense for McNabb especially if Favre retires.
o. If the Houston Texans do not make the playoffs next year Bill Cowher might walk into a perfect situation in 2011.
r. Next week I will give a report on Kurt Warner and whether or not he is Hall of Fame worthy. In the words of Chris Mortensen, the single best NFL story of the past 25 years, maybe ever.
5. Baseball Thoughts
a. Yunnel Escobar, amongst all major league shortstops the last three seasons:
4th best AVG, 3rd best OBP, 4th best OPS and 5th best walk rate. And he ranked second in combined +/- according to the Fielding Bible over the last two seasons behind only Jack Wilson.
b. Love this scoop DOB gave on his blog Tuesday night...I also talked to someone today who said that Xavier Nady had been the Braves’ first choice before they signed Glaus, but that Nady’s twice-repaired elbow (two T.J. surgeries) did not satisfy doctors who looked at the MRI.
c. In 2009, the Yankees went 52-35 (.598) against teams who finished the season with a .500 record or above. This was the best mark in MLB. Against teams who finished below .500, the Bombers went 51-24 (.680). This was good for #2 in MLB, only behind the Angels.
d. Chipper Jones (left) is the active leader in homers (426) for a player who has spent his entire career with one franchise. Mike Schmidt is the all-time leader with 548 for the Phillies.
e. Alex Rodriguez led righthanded hitters in homers from 2000-09 with 435. Jim Thome led lefthanded hitters with 368. Lance Berkman led switch hitters with 309.
f. In 2007-08, Jonathan Papelbon walked a total of 23 batters; in 2009, he walked 24.
g. Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe put together a 31st team with the remaining free agents. By the way in my opinion this team would be close to .500.
h. First base: Russell Branyan, hit 31 homers for Seattle last year.
Second base: Orlando Hudson, four-time Gold Glover, .282 career hitter.
Shortstop: Orlando Cabrera, hit .284 last season with Twins and A’s, though the two-time Gold Glover made 25 errors.
Third base: Adam Kennedy, hit .289 with 11 homers for Oakland. (A true second baseman, but he played 82 games at third last season.)
Catcher: Rod Barajas, 20 homers for the Jays; started 110 games behind the dish.
DH: Hank Blalock, 25 homers for the Rangers.
Center field: Johnny Damon, World Series hero had 24 homers, 82 RBIs for Yankees.
Left field: Jermaine Dye, hit 27 homers for White Sox.
Right field: Rocco Baldelli. OK, not an everyday player anymore, but he can play more than he did in Boston.
Bench: OF Gabe Gross, OF Jonny Gomes (20 homers for Reds), C Jose Molina, INF Melvin Mora.
Starters: Jarrod Washburn, John Smoltz, Pedro Martinez, Jeff Weaver, Mark Mulder. It’s getting weaker the closer we get to spring training, but you would also have Erik Bedard and Chien-Ming Wang ready by June.
Relievers: Mike MacDougal (converted 20 of 21 save chances for Nationals), Kevin Gregg (23 of 30 for Cubs), Kiko Calero, Jamey Wright, Ron Mahay, Joe Beimel, Scott Schoeneweis.
Manager: Eric Wedge.
General manager: Kevin Towers.
Which current teams do you think this unit could beat?
i. Does everyone remember last Spring when Frank Wren was getting ripped by some for not signing Will Ohman. It looks like another good move by Wren as he is coming off elbow and shoulder injuries. Ohman threw for seven or eight teams last week, at least showing that he’s healthy. He was in the mid 80s with a good sinker and breaking pitch, and the velocity is expected to come in time.
j. I am starting to hear and read a lot on baseball discussing a move to strict slotting system and an international draft. Something tells me Mr. Boras will not be happy.
k. Saw this quote from Nolan Ryan and he is talking big. "Our payroll is going to be between $65-$67 million, down from the nearly $75 million it was last year and considerably (down) from what it was just a couple of years ago. But if we're not in the postseason, I'll be extremely disappointed."
n. It looks like Cashman called Boras's bluff good for Cashmoney.
o. By the way Damon's OPS was 120 points lower outside of Yankee Stadium in 2009.
7. What I read this week
The first read comes from the NY Times and the title of the article is, "The 3 Facebook Settings Every User Should Know." This is done more as a PSA as 90% of the readers are facebook users (I am not). Remember there are a lot of sickos in the world so keep your personal info out of their hands. Beach pictures should be public, just saying.
The second read comes from the LA Times and asks the simple question, "Who helped corporate rich get richer?" Well the answer would be all of us if you just like me put some money into bond mutual funds. An unprecedented $375 billion poured into bond funds in 2009, providing a significant chunk of the capital that then flowed into newly issued bonds from companies such as General Electric Co., Pfizer Inc. and Dow Chemical Co.
8. Top Sports Movies I have ever watched
Last week I asked for some content ideas and the greatest kicker in Screven County history delivered with this idea. Good work SHEP...proud of you. Shep also bought some squares. He had a great week.
1. Bull Durham - By far the best baseball movie ever made. Tons of great one liners and everyone is intrigued with Annie Savoy.
2. Hoosiers - My favorite part is when the team gets to the State Finals at Butler Fieldhouse in Indianapolis and Coach Dale makes his team measure the height of the rim and the distance of free throw line. Movie also delivered this badass line, "I'll make it."
3.Rocky - Who doesn't love all of these movies? Yo Adrian! The montages were pretty good as well.
4. Bad News Bears - The original one from the 70's were awesome with Walter Mathou. I loved one of the sequels when they rented a van and drove from California to Houston and played in the Astrodome.
5. Brian's Song - I cry every time I watch this movie and I am not scared to admit it.
6. Major League -It might not be critically acclaimed as other baseball movies. I can not turn it off anytime I see it on television. Juuuuuuuust a bit outside.
7. Miracle - This scene is probably in my top 3 scenes of movies of all time.
8. Varsity Blues - Playing football is south Georgia I saw a lot of similarities to south Georgia and Texas. Plus I don't want your life.
9. He Got Game - This movie opened up my eyes to the world of college recruiting. Another reason elite athletes have better lives than you and me.
10. Blue Chips - In my opinion one of the more underrated Sports Movies of all time. Great cameos and even a decent acting performance from Shaq.
Just Missed: Rudy, Remember The Titans, The Blind Side, Field of Dreams, Tin Cup, Hoop Dreams, The Rookie.
What I need to see: Slapshot, Raging Bull, Pride of the Yankees, Bang The Drum Slowly, The Color of Money.
9. Top Sports Books I have ever read
1.Moneyball - Written by Michael Lewis it takes a look at the Oakland A's and GM Billy Beane. Its focus is the team's modernized, analytical, sabermetric approach to assembling a competitive baseball team, despite Oakland's disadvantaged revenue situation.
2. Friday Night Lights - Written by H. G. Bissinger. The book follows the story of the 1988 Permian High School Panthers football team from Odessa as they made a run towards the Texas state championship. What Bissinger found was a football crazed town with misplaced priorities, where football conquered most aspects of the town and academics were ignored for the sake of championships
3. The Blind Side - Another Michael Lewis book and this one looks at the position of left tackle. With the story of the left tackle Lewis found out about Michael Oher and this book is now an awesome movie.
4. Living On The Black - Written by John Feinstein he takes a look at the 2007 season of Tom Glavine and Mike Mussina. Very intriguing read especially when you consider the Mets colapse in 2007 and the Yankees early payoff exit.
5. The Big O - Auto-biography on Oscar Robertson who is the greatest all-around basketball player ever. I learned more about the history of the NBA in this one book than anything prior.
6. Pistol - Intriguing read on a very intriguing human being. If you get bored do some youtube research on Pistol Pete and you will be stunned on how good the Pistol was. If this story was a movie you would not believe it.
7. The Yankee Years -Very controversial when published last spring but I found it more enlightening than controversial. It makes you wonder about the media when they take a sentence from a 300 page book and turn it into a two week story.
8. Who's Your Caddy? Written by the talented Rick Reilly who has turned into sellout for moving from SI to ESPN. Every chapter is Reilly story of caddying for some very intriguing people. His topics range from John Daley to a blind golfer.
9. Beer and Circus - After reading this you have to wonder about the quality of education one receives at any school that plays in any of the BCS member conferences. If your school is a state institution the lower your chances of receiving a sound Education.
10.Teammates - Written by the great David Halberstam this book takes a look at Jonny Pesky and Dom Dimmagio as they travel from the northeast to see Ted Williams one last time. Lots of great stories.
Is their anything I need to read?
10. Non Football Thoughts
a. When that damn Groundhog awakes tomorrow he better not see his shadow because I am ready for some spring. I do not know why, except for a two week stretch it has not been to cold.
b. In doing some research for this column (can I call this a column?) I found that Groundhog Day proponents state that the rodents' forecasts are accurate 75% to 90%. A Canadian study for 13 cities in the past 30 to 40 years puts success rate level at 37%. Also, the National Climatic Data Center reportedly has stated that the overall predictions accuracy rate is around 39%.
c. Maybe I want Punxsutawney Phil or General Beauregard Lee or Staten Island Chuck or Wiarton Willie to see its shadow.
d. Enough groundhog day talk. But seriously 4 groundhogs?
e. Great weekend hanging out with an awesome crew in Masters City (Augusta). Whenever you get Me, Smoak, his wife, Brice, his wife, Shep, Devo, Boots, his wife, and some of Jen's (Brice's wife) Physical Therapy School friends you are in for a legendary time.
f. Since we are on letter F, I will use this opportunity to grade TMAC's performance this week and he does get a F. Did he hang in Augusta? No. Was he projecting and not returning text messages somewhere else? Yes. Also their is no chance for extra credit to raise this grade.
g. Do you remember when Saturday Night Live was funny? I watched with the roomdawg Sunday afternoon and maybe laughed twice. They miss some Tina Fey.
h. New Years Resolution Update - I made resolution in the first Ten Things of 2010, here is an update on how things are going. I will give grades of A for outstanding, B for above average, C for average, D for not good and F for really not good
-Do not make empty resolutions that last for 2 weeks - C
-Start going to bed earlier and waking up earlier- C
-Lose a lot of the exess pounds - C -
-Become more financial responsible and this includes eating out less and eating in more - B need to eat out less but when I have eaten out it has been cheaper.
-Read two books a month - A - I read Kingfish and Freakonomics this month
-Improve my softball game - B - I have been on treadmill three times a week, been to cold to go outside.
-Become more organized at work - C
-Become more organized at home - C
-Attend Church more often - F
-Continue to be awesome - A
-Actually make good on my resolutions. - C
i. If their was a grade higher than an A I would have received it for awesomness.
j. As I write this at 940 Sunday night I have to agree with Braves Beat writer DOB that so far, it’s the worst Grammy Awards show I can remember. The performances tonight have been a new level in mediocrity and grotesque excess.
k. So Celine Dion walks on stage to sing a song about Michael Jackson and I can only think, why the long face?
l. Last week I learned that a week without new shows on television is quite boring. How I Met Your Mother, Big Bang, The Office, 30 Rock and Community were all reruns and that stunk.
m. I also learned that the producers/writers of 24 probably have never visited New York City because Jack Bauer who lived his whole television life in LA is somehow able to drive around NYC with very little traffic. How does he do that?
n. Decent start to 24 this season. So far I would say better than last season but nothing like Seasons 2 and 3.
o. In regards to Jennifer Nettles of Sugarland performing with Bon Jovi. I might have a crush on Miss Nettles.
p. I have started following twitter this week and I use it just to get sports updates. I do not post anything because I am not a loser. The guys that I follow include Jon Heyman, Buster Olney, Peter King, Peter Gammons, and UGA hoops coach Mark Fox.
q. A visit to Coach Fox's twitter page is a must read. After reading this who would not want to play for this guy.
r. Ricky Martin is awkward he kept saying, come on let them feel the heat. What does that mean?
s. Over 79 million Youtube views can not be wrong and not one mention at the Grammy's.
t. Jeff Bridges new movie Crazy Heart looks amazing. I might have something to do mid afternoon before the Super Bowl.
u.Their is also this movie titled A Single Man that looks intriguing.
v. I also have an extra pass to the movie Valentine's Day. Before you pick on me for watching a ridiculous movie with ridiculous title it has both Jessica's (Alba and Beil) and it is free. Next Monday the 8th if anyone is interested.
w. I still have some squares at $5 if anyone is interested.
x. It must have been a bad year for music if Taylor Swift won a grammy for Album of the year. Also, what should I make of the Taylor Swift and John Meyer rumors?
Quote of The Week
From Co-worker Justin Ferna on the Yankees pursuit for one more outfielder.
Baldelli is super guido so that could work but hes a risk.
Text of the week
I will give a convo between friends Enrique and Raul (Not their real names)
I am expecting you to have the single ladies lined up and waiting when we get there tonight.
I'll try but you have to remember I am a married father.
So was tiger!
Haha-but I dont have his money
But you do know a divorce lawyer though
Tweet of the week
From Jon Heyman Sunday afternoon-
just witnessed woman walk into orozco sculpture at MoMA. 3 guards trying to hold art up. send help!
Heyman also gave us this gem on Tuesday afternoon
what a day. a's get sheets, cubs get nady, padres get garland, twins get thome, mets get no one
Have a wonderful week. Do not forget to check back throughout the week for the Captain's recruiting updates. I will have a Super Bowl preview up late in the week plus the crew will check in with what they learned on Friday. Also due to the Super Bowl the Ten Things will be posted late Monday night early Tuesday. Go Colts! Is anyone having a Super Bowl party I should know about?