CRYING FOUL OVER USC NOT #1: This is why I hate the BCS. No, not because USC isn't #1 [I think that Texas should be the #1 team]...but the arguements people are making about USC. "But, Sportz...they've won 30 in a row and the last 2 National championships!" WHOA!!! What does any of that have to do with anything!?!?!? What USC did before September 2005 should be irrelvent to voters in the 2005 polls. The 2005 National Champion shouldn't be voted on using previous year's merits!! "But, Sportz, they've been #1 all season long". SO?? I know that the protocol is that a #1 team can't fall in the rankings if it keeps winning...but it has happened before. When looking at Texas and USC this year...I think Texas (a) has done a better job with their schedule and (b) if they played a game right now...I'd pick Texas to win. And, honestly, who cares who is #1 and #2???? Really, only the #3 team in the BCS gets screwed.
WEISS IS NICE FOR A PRICE: Charlie Weiss was given a new 10-year contract by Notre Dame. This locks him up into South Bend as rumors of NFL teams hovering have come up. One interesting thought in this. Ty Willingham had a darn good inagural season with the Irish, too....but didn't get that kind of support that Weiss is now getting.
MANNY WANTS OUT: And why wouldn't he?? He only won a World Series title in a city that would adore him if he let them. This marks the 4th straight year that Ramirez has asked for a trade out of Boston....and twice this year. He has the right to block any trade and there is only a handful of teams that want to deal with his $18-$20M salary for the next several seasons. To be honest, it's gotta be really hard to deal this guy if you are Boston. He's an RBI machine who, evidently, doesn't tank it when he doesn't get his trade demands granted. Sure, he's a loon, too...but this team has won despite that so far. But, if the team is trying to move into a newer younger team.....then Manny just very well may be out. Think New York Mets.
VIVI AWARDS: I guess it is voting time for the Vivi Awards....some awards thing that has me, Monponsett and Alex as nominees. Again, awards are great and all [I still cherish my 2004 Pigskin Blog of The Year]....but I don't need it. I don't need an outside "award" to mark my significance in this AOL blog world. Dude, I know where I stand. I am proud of my blog....which is the most important thing to me. My family gets to read my sports takes 500 miles away and actually read it with regularity [at least that's what they say...lol]. Some of my old pals from the message boards [Yannis, Raisin, YCS] have come into the blogging world and busted out some great blogs themselves....which makes me believe that I talk to some pretty smart individuals [and you couldn't even handle some of the others who have yet to embrace blogging!!!] I was one the first and few on "Pigskin Bloggers Live" before it blew up into the phenominom that it currently is....and I genuinely feel that Jamie and the crew are really happy to have me on when I do come on the show. I think I called in on the first 20 PBL/SBL shows....but have sort of "retired" from it since then [though I just did call...lol] due to the fact that I work during when the show is aired live. And I have respect given to me from the bloggers that I respect. The bloggers that I feel are the best....think that I do a good job. And that makes me feel great. Heck, I am honored that I am held in such high esteem by George Coztanza and Die Cast Dude [two of my favorite blogs] that they actually placed my takes of their blogs on their blog as a "blurb". This is my hobby....not my job. And I am honestly not trying to dump on the Vivi Awards or anyone associated with them. From what I've seen, they do quite a bang up job organizing the whole thing...and being nominated, I will say, is an honor. But I'm not going to throw a ticker tape parade if I win. I won't really care if I lose. My theme song isn't Journey's "Don't Stop Believing". Anyways...good luck to Stacy and Alex in the balloting and I hope one of you two win.
DUKE IS #1: Did I write that?? Ugh. Well, they are the #1 team in all the opening college hoops polls. And they deserve to be. They have Sheldon Williams and JJ Redick coming back and bringing in Josh McRoberts. So, this team is stacked. However, they don't really have a proven point guard this season [Shaun Livingston was supposed to be that guy...but he's now running the Clippers] and Coack K usually relies on a tough, reliable and defensively sound PG to run his team. So, let's see how this goes.
NORTH CAROLINA IS UNRANKED: The last defending champ to enter the next season unranked was Kansas in 1989. Roy Williams was the coach of that team, too. Yes...this team will have some ups and downs...but I think that it can be an NCAA tournament team. They will break in freshmen Tyler Hansborough [a freakin' stud!], Danny Green, Bobby Frasor and Marcus Ginyard. Next season, they add shooting guard Wayne Ellington [#4], power forward Brandan Wright [#5], point guard Tywon Lawson [#8] and power forward Deon Thompson [#22] into the mix. That's three guys in the Top 8 of the Class of 2006. Not bad. While no one from 2007 is signed in....they are on the radar of many of the top recruits, including Kevin Love [and even on OJ Mayo's radar]. Needless to say....get your licks in guys, because we will be back. Soon.
FOOTBALL PLAYOFF: Here is a perfect reason for the playoff. Georgia was without their Heisman candidate quarterback DJ Shockley in a big game against Florida. The Bulldogs end up losing 14-10 and are most likely done for any National Championship talk [they still look alright for a BCS]. Of course, you could make that arguement around the country....but it still doesn't convince me that this system is just. To be honest, if there was a playoff format....I'd put Notre Dame as possibly a favorite right now. Not only are they good....but they've been able to win on the road in tough environments.
WHAT HAPPENED TO TENNESSEE?? Next on the Irish's slate is Tennessee. The 3-4 Vols. Yeah, Rocky Top isn't rockin' as much right now as Big Orange has really stumbled. This team was ranked #4 two months ago....and now many struggle to get bowl eligible.
CLOSE GAME THAT SHOULDN'T HAVE BEEN SO CLOSE: I'm totally not sold on Florida State. They should thank God that (a) they play in the ACC's Atlantic division where NC State, Maryland and Clemson are having subpar seasons; (b) Boston College threw that ugly pick on the first play against them; (c) Miami isn't that good either; and (d) Virginia Tech isn't on their schedule. Yet. The Noles struggled to beat a game Maryland team yesterday who had them down 10 in the second half. Despite all of this, the Noles are a win against NC State away from being in the first ACC title game. FSU is in big trouble against the Hokies if they both meet for the ACC title in a month.
CLOSE GAME THAT SHOULDN'T HAVE BEEN SO CLOSE, PART II: How in the world was Texas down 28-12 to Oklahoma State????? Sure, the Horns outscored the Cowboys 35-0 in the 2nd half....but what about that first half??? That kind of crap could knock ya down a peg on "Sportz Top 12".
SPORTZ TOP 12:
1-Texas: Okay, it didn't. But watch it!
2-USC. That's the way ya do it. Winning 55-13.
3-Virginia Tech: I really don't see anyone that can beat them, aside from the two teams ranked ahead of them.
4-Alabama. Playing Utah State may hurt their BCS rankings.
5-LSU. This team is one bad half against Tennessee...yeah, Tennessee....from being mentioned among the elite.
6-Miami. Throw back those throwbacks!!!
7-Notre Dame. They should cruise thru the rest of the sked.
8-Georgia. I'll give ya a mulligan.
9-UCLA. Stanford gave them quite a scare.
10-Penn State. Your 2005 Big Ten Champions. Can you believe that?
11-Florida State. Overrated.
12-Ohio State. Hey, they won a big Big Ten road game!!