Friday, September 30, 2011

Craction Pool Week 4

Craction time, kiddies!

Congrats to Eric Hucke of Hartland, WI for winning last week with a crisp +61.5 points! Man, the guy wins eating contests and now Craction contests! Somebody stop this guy!

This week, you'll need to STRETCH and DIVE for every last point, just like Darren McFadden and Fred Jackson did last week!

Sign up HERE for the league.

And for more information about the game that is sweeping the Nation, go to

YOUR PRIZE THIS WEEK: Another lovely Southwest Tech, Fightin' Donkeys sweatshirt, just in time for fall!

Redskins, Bills, Raiders, Steelers, Lions

This Play Should Have Never Happened

Gregg Easterbrook has morphed from an enjoyable, enlightened read (about 4 years ago) to a nearly insufferably smug ass.

With an agenda.

That said, when he's right, he's right. And I can't argue a bit with what happened to the Redskins on Monday Night on 3rd and 21.

Gregg, take it away...

Sour Play of the Week: Washington leading Dallas 16-15 just before the two-minute warning, the Skins had the Boys facing third-and-21 on their 30. Since the average NFL snap gains somewhat over 5 yards, and Washington this season is allowing 6.1 yards per snap, all the Redskins needed do was play straight defense and a stop was likely. That cannot seriously be an eight-man blitz on third-and-21! The eight-man blitz is almost never seen, because it is like handing out a card that says "Please score a touchdown." Tony Romo threw a 30-yard completion to the single-covered Dez Bryant, penalty yardage was added, and a moment later the home team launched the winning kick.

On the possession, Washington defensive coordinator Jim Haslett called an eight-man blitz on first down, a seven-man blitz on second down and an eight-man blitz on third down. He also handed out cards saying "Please score a touchdown." Dallas settled for as field goal.

In 2009, Washington had the league's ninth-ranked defense, playing a conventional, conservative style. In 2010, Haslett became the Skins' defensive coordinator and, arriving, declared he would install a blitzing defense that made big plays. It did, for the opposition. Blitzing madly, Washington sank to 31st in defense. Calling lots of six-or-more-man blitzes lets the defensive coordinator feel macho, but rarely leads to victory. As noted by reader Mike McLaughlin of Spokane, Wash., even Skins corner DeAngelo Hall thought an eight-man blitz on third-and-21 was ridiculous.

Last season against another Texas team, Houston, the Skins held a comfortable 17-point lead late in the third quarter. Straight defense would have made victory likely. Instead, Haslett called blitzes on 19 of the remaining 40 Houston snaps, and Washington lost. The low point came with the Redskins leading 27-20, Houston facing fourth-and-10 just before the two-minute warning -- a situation very similar to last night's. Just like last night, Washington did not need a sack or turnover, merely an incompletion. The Skins big-blitzed, leaving the other team's best wide receiver (in this case Andre Johnson) single-covered, just like last night. Johnson caught a long touchdown pass, and Washington had shot itself in the foot.

This sort of thing is an example of the reality that while NFL teams have gigantic staffs (the Redskins list 20 coaches) who do nothing but football year-round and boast of their long hours at the office, NFL teams consistently repeat obvious mistakes. The "Monday Night Football" error by Haslett against Dallas was nearly identical to his previous-year error against the Texans. Twenty coaches looked at film of the 2010 Texans loss and learned nothing from it.

It should be noted, that Haslett was hired by Shanahan out of the UFL, a league that is now dormant, with good reason. The Skins first choice was Mike Zimmer of the Bengals, who instead decided to stay a Bengal for surely less money than Dan Snyder would have thrown at him to come here.

That said, the Skins defense is markedly better this year, mostly because they have younger and better players. Plus, that karmic sinkhole Albert Haynesworth is doing his "magic" on the Patriots defense right now.

I don't think Haslett is any great defensive mind. He's a straight forward guy, and honest. Which I like. But that WAS some stupid shit on Monday night. Let's try not to repeat it.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

McDonalds Campaign Hooks Up With Two Legendary Non-Winners

Further proof that winning in sports means nothing to Madison Avenue: LeBron James (0 NCAA titles, 0 NBA Titles) and Michelle Wie (0 high level amateur titles, 2 low-level LPGA victories, 0 Majors) are the featured athletes to promote McDonald's Monopoly game, where they remind everyone how EASY it is to win.

(Irony alert!)

Kudos to James (I suppose) for having SOME sense of humor to allow this. But then again, he gets paid either way, so what does he really care?

As for Wie, she's the most noted "non-winner" in recent golf history. Despite the mountains of hype on her since she was 14, a mere two skinny Tour wins and nothing else later, she can still snag fat endorsement deals because... well...
“As a personality, Michelle crosses a lot of borders, and this ad and this relationship is a great way to show that, so we’re pretty happy with that,” said Clarke Jones, senior vice president and global director of golf clients for IMG. “Certainly there’s been some criticism about her not being a consistent champion, but look at the way she started to play and win late last year and remember that she is 20 years old. There’s a lot of golf ahead of her.”

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Jordan Ready To Put Another $300 Million Into Play

So reports are, fading basketball icon and part-time NBA owner Michael Jordan is ready to propose to his longtime recent girlfriend Yvette Prieto.

She's young, she's pretty, and I am sure she's not into Mike because of the money.

Nah. She just likes being with a guy who smokes cigars, gambles recklessly, and plays approximately 693 rounds of golf per year.

He also sleeps with other women.

But hey, if it's "true love" then who can stop it? Not Scottie Pippen, his double-date buddy! Not Charles Barkley! Not even MJ's attorneys, who no doubt are saying: "Dude. The last one cost you $300 million! I would just rent these companions from here on out."

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Hispanic Anti-Cancer Gay Pride Support The Troops NFL Week/Month/Year

Yes, methinks the mighty "Shield" is getting spread just a bit thin on tangential market segment causes they choose to "champion" during the season.

As you surely know, this month they are honoring Hispanic Heritage Month in the NFL, and I can only think of my favorite hispanic NFL player of all time: Chad Ochocinco.

TO: Czabe
RE: NFL Silliness

Dude, can you please air this out tomorrow???

The NFL's production of their Latin American history month celebration
is the same cloaked marketing campaign as their Breast Cancer
shenanigans that you've outlined so well.

The bottom line is, the NFL wouldn't work this Latin angle in if they
couldn't profit from it. They're simply using it as an opportunity to
focus on a particular demographic.

¡No Mas Goodell!

¿Donde SeƱor Tagliabue?

- Jon Smith

Monday, September 26, 2011

Your Primer To Understand "Aggie Pride"

Perception is a funny thing in sports. When you are not from a part of a country where a certain team or school is a "big deal" to the locals, you don't get a good feel for what it is like when it comes to "opinions on the ground" in that area.

Like with Texas A&M bolting for the SEC, just because Texas had pushed things too far with the Longhorn Network.

Really? That was the final straw? What were the other straws? And seriously, who DOES Texas A&M think they are?

Well, A&M has a mighty high opinion of themselves as a football power, national irrelevance and lack of championships be damned.

To quote Anchorman: "I don't know how to put this, but I'm kind of a big deal."

Ivan Maisel of does an excellent job of getting the rest of us non-Texans up to speed on just what fuels so-called "Aggie Pride."

Through the lean times and the occasional flush ones, the Aggies always had their pride. Them being so full of themselves may have made Aggie jokes resonate to the rest of us. But Aggie pride also fueled an unconquerable optimism that bordered on braggadocio. Aggie players played better, ran faster and tackled harder, whether they did or not. Their fans believed, no matter what the scoreboard said. As the saying goes, Aggies don't lose, they just run out of time. 
It has been that way pretty much since E. King Gill ran out of the stands at the Dixie Football Classic in January 1922 and became the inspiration for the 12th Man. Bryant discovered that spirit in 1954 when he left Kentucky to become the head coach at Texas A&M. Bryant, in his 1974 autobiography "Bear," recounted a conversation he had with Jack Finney, a member of the A&M Athletic Board, before Bryant agreed to come to College Station. 
Bryant: If we could offer a boy the same scholarship deal Texas does, and there were 20 good prospects, how many would we sign? 
Finney: Ten 
Bryant: You mean we would get half? 
Finney: At least. 
"That impressed me because I knew I could win with that," Bryant wrote. "But I didn't know the Aggies then like I know them now. Old Jack was exaggerating. You couldn't get ten. You would be lucky to get one. The chances were you wouldn't get any. Not then." 
That bravado, only false when shoved under the harsh light of reality, is the spirit of Texas A&M. Bryant said something else. "Ten Aggies," he wrote, "can yell louder than a hundred of anybody else.
R.C. Slocum sustained the longest run of success, leading the Aggies to first-place finishes in the Southwest Conference in four consecutive seasons (1991 to 1994, though they were ineligible in '94). That went over so well that the league dissolved soon after.
And the league will surely crumble and fall soon enough after this move by A&M. It's just a matter of time. Which is a shame, because I quite enjoyed the Big 12 in its 2000's heyday. The Vince Young Era at Texas, the Mike Leach shoot-em-out teams at Texas Tech. Oklahoma's national championship team, and then Adrian Peterson's era.

A&M has done well by this move. Regardless of future record and SEC title game appearances, they are now in the "NFL of College Football." That plays very well on recruiting visits. If you are a kid in Texas, you get to stay in state and play close to home, AND get a chance to visit Baton Rouge, Tuscaloosa, Gainesville and the like.

They may not get the 10 out of 20 prospects Bear Bryant was led to believe, but I think the number moves decisively up from "one."

Friday, September 23, 2011

Craction Pool Week 3

Step right up, donkeys! Win this crisp new Potomac Cup golf hat, and dozen brand new Calloway rocks!

All you got to do is....

Sign up HERE for my Craction League!

And have a little bit of luck!

Last week... "GUMPS" was the winner, with a crisp 71.5 Craction Points!

Yours truly... not so good... 1 for 5. Pathetic.

My picks for Week 3!
Bills, Browns, Packers, Eagles, Redskins.

Good luck!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Getting Paid, Means Never Having to Get Up Quickly

To say that I am going to enjoy watching Albert Haynesworth frustrate the living crap out of every Patriot coach, player, fan, and beat writer this year, is a massive understatement.

To quote T.O. "Getcha popcorn ready!"

Because the Fat Albert Show in New England is just getting rolling.

Here's the headline from the Boston Globe's Patriot Blog:


Oh, you can ASK for more. You can HOPE for more. But you are NOT going to GET more.

In fact, count on LESS, and then lower your expectations from there.

This guy is such a colossal bum, even the Bill Belichick rehabilitation touch is going to fail on this project. Here's the funny part of the story on last week's game against the Chargers.
Against the Chargers, Haynesworth didn't have one impactful play. He didn't even show up on the stat sheet. Haynesworth wasn't terrible or anything -- he competed fine (although his final two plays were a little suspect) -- you just expect an obviously talented player to have some sort of an impact. If Haynesworth did have an impact, it was of the negative variety when got out of his run gap three times, including the touchdown run by Ryan Mathews. By going inside Haynesworth left too much room for Mayo to cover in that gap. Haynesworth's two final plays were his poorest. He was knocked to the ground for the seventh and eighth time in the game and didn't make much of an attempt to get up. Check the footage at 14:13 of the fourth quarter to see what I'm talking about. Here's a screen grab."

And so it begins. Have fun, Pats fans. The ride is just beginning.

Reference Material.

Solheim Cup Preview

Soooo, starting Friday (or midnight on the Golf Channel) our ladies will take on Europe's ladies in a Ryder Cup style team golf event.

As a golf nerd, trust me, I'll be there and have DVR's rollin.

Now, for a preview.

Our awesome gals. (Paula Creamer, Morgan Pressel).

Two of their battleships. (Laura Davies, Caroline Hedwall).

Okay, now you are up to speed. Go USA!

Orakpo. Ballin'...

That is all. As you were.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

I Bet Michael Vick Doesn't Wear A Seatbelt, Either

With all of the injuries in the modern NFL, and given the players' bellyaching about an 18 game schedule and off-season OTAs and padded practices, you would THINK the players would be taking every sensible precaution to keep their million dollar careers safe.

Just don't wear a mouthguard, you pussy!

On the seemingly innocent "hit" (or, "collision" more accurately) that knocked Michael Vick out of the game last Sunday against the Falcons, it turns out that Vick was in fact, NOT wearing a simple mouthguard.

Alex Marvez of Fox 

A video analysis of the game telecast shows Vick wasn’t wearing a mouth guard while playing against the Falcons, including during the accidental collision with Eagles right tackle Todd Herremans that knocked him from the game. The impact left Vick with a concussion and lacerated tongue — both of which may not have occurred had he been using that piece of protective equipment.
The Eagles declined comment through a team spokesman and Vick wasn’t available Tuesday to comment on whether he was wearing a mouth guard.
To be sure, a mouthguard is no magic forcefield. In fact, scientific studies are inconclusive on the ability of one to prevent or mitigate severity of concussions.

But hello, simple logic would say having one in, is at least BETTER when it comes to keeping your skull from hitting "tilt." If nothing else, it's doubtful Vick would have cut up his mouth as he did on that play.

Of course, these are the NFL players who executed the worst bluff ever in the history of collective bargaining. Right when they had the league freaking the fuck out about missing even ONE full week of pre-season games, they caved and took a rollback in salaries for a league that is riding a rocketship of popularity and television rights.

Now I find out the players successfully "negotiated" to NOT make knee pads and mouthpieces mandatory. Wow. What a coup, DeMaurice!

Going forward, it's increasingly obvious Vick simply can't play a full season without getting killed. He's too quick and athletic to simply take a 5 step drop and dump the ball to his first or second read. And his instincts to extend plays - even if just moving around WITHIN the pocket - will inevitably lead to the one time a defender can just shake loose as a play is breaking down, and crush the wideout sized QB into a fine pile of tangled ligaments and broken bones.

The first thing I would do if I was Andy Reid - besides removing every mirror in my house - is stop running Vick on idiotic gadget plays like he did on the first series on Sunday night. Secondly, I would take every advantage of spelling him in games that are essentially decided.

For example: At 31-13 in the Rams game, with 8:56 left, Vick should be done. Gone. Instead, Vick played two more series, one of which was three knees in the victory formation. Still, the previous series was un-necessary.

Football machismo, however, and coaches absurd adherence to superstition over logic, will dictate that they don't do sensible things like this, because it makes them look "weak" or "scared." Coaches will fall back on the logic of "well, you can get hurt anytime" or the old "the NFL injury rate is 100%."


If I have a $100 millon Ferrari of a player, I'm not going to drive it over gravel roads if I can avoid it, or take it out in the snow or heavy rain, just to be safe.

And you could call me a pussy all you want.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Mariano Saves

Now that he's king of the closer hill, you might want to read this excellent piece by SI's Tom Verducci on just how "Mo" Rivera came to acquire his signature pitch, the cut fastball.

Just three months into his new role as the closer for a budding Yankees dynasty, Rivera was suddenly unable to throw his signature four-seam fastball straight, not even during his daily toss with pitcher Ramiro Mendoza. Every catch a struggle, Mendoza told Rivera to knock it off, to quit making the ball dip and dart. Rivera assured his friend that he wasn't doing it intentionally. He was gripping the ball the same way he always had, releasing it the same way he always had. The wicked movement just ... happened.

Yes, the rest is long. But well worth it. And I don't even like the Yankees that much, or baseball!

Friday, September 16, 2011

Starr vs. Favre

Thanks to the boys and girls at NFL Films for letting me be a talking head contributor to their ongoing "Top 10" series. Packer fans will want to set their DVR's for this beauty on Saturday night, as they tackle the ol' Favre vs. Starr debate.

I am an admitted outsider, so you can take my opinion for what it's worth. (Translation: not worth as much as a diehard, but perhaps a worthy opinion to compare against as a mostly neutral observer).

To me, Bart Starr is so iconic and beloved up there in Green Bay, and Wisconsin in general, that Favre will never come close to his stature. And yet, he could have eclipsed Starr had he not shown such crass indifference to the loyalty of the fanbase.

Brett Favre never had class. Bart Starr, IS class. It's just that simple.

A gigantic pile of passing records and the games played streak will never eclipse the legend of Bart.

But what do I know?

Enjoy the special.

Craction Pool Week 2

Hey kiddies, wanna win this brand new, rare and hard-to-find hooded sweatshirt of the mighty "Fightin' Donks" of Southwest Tech?

Well, here you go.

Just sign up for here, and play in my league, here.

Last week, a guy named "KDog" won the week, with a staggering +91! Well done, "KDog." However, I do not know who you are, or how to get a hold of you! So do email me and claim your prize of the autographed Packer helmet.

My picks this week:

Redskins over Cardinals
Chiefs over Lions
Falcons over Eagles
Packers over Panthers
Broncos over Bengals

Good luck, have fun, and remember it's all free!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Rachel Uchitel Finds A Silver Lining In 9/11

Her would be ball-n-chain fiance died in it!


Hey, folks, thanks coming tonight. Drive home safely!

No really, she actually said that. Or at least the NY Post's Page 6 reported she said that. Then Uchitel's attorneys charged her $350 an hour to write an angry letter to the Post demanding a retraction and apology for words taken out of context.

Haven't seen that retraction yet. Maybe they're working on it. Ahem...

Here, let me step aside for the master of snark, "What Would Tyler Durden Do?" take it from here.
Long before she helped ruin Tiger Woods marriage, Rachel Uchitel was engaged to an investment banker who was killed during the attacks on 9/11. But don’t feel too bad for her, because as she explains in a New York Post interview that comes out tomorrow, dead fiances never start fights. 
She’s now threatening to sue the Post while claiming these quotes were taken out of context, though I’m not sure what the right context is for, “I’m happy he got burned alive on 9/11 or else I might have gained some weight.” 
“I believe Andy was meant to die because he was too good. I’m almost happy it ended the way it did because I’ve learned so many lessons from him. It would have been tragic if we got into fights and then divorced.” “(Had he not been murdered) I would be a fat housewife with three kids on Long Island.”

REACT: Sigh. I'll never write this well, or be this mercilessly funny.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The Irresistible Siren Call of The Backup

In August, Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow was persona non-grata with Broncos fans. His pre-season struggles were enough to make the fan base in Denver cuddle up with the warm thoughts of a more competent Kyle Orton running the offense.

Then, one game happened. And the Broncos lost by three.

The masses are now demanding the most popular player on any losing NFL team: the backup.

Oh, never mind the fact that Orton was under siege all night on Monday from a relentless and formidible Raider front four. Never mind the fact that it's quite possible Tebow will do WORSE than Orton. And never mind the fact that an NFL game is dependent upon up to 48 different players, and an entire coaching staff all doing their jobs better than the other 48 players and staff across from them.


Give us what we want! Now!

It reminds me of two great quotes. The first is the so-called "Law of the Instrument."

"If the only tool you have is a hammer, to treat everything as if it were a nail."
- Abraham Maslow

The other quote is from H.L. Mencken, aka "The Sage of Baltimore".

"Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard."

If the Bronco fans get their wish, and Timmy Rah-Rah is plugged in on offense, oh yeah, they'll get what they want.

Good, and hard.

Paula Creamer Rocks The Socks

For me, she sorta looks Cat-In-The-Hat-ish, but for anybody who has a "thing" for schoolgirl style socks, well then these pics pretty much constitute hard core porn.

Keep your hands in above the desk, and enjoy.

Monday, September 12, 2011

She Was Willing to Be A Kamikaze Hero

Of all of the interesting and sometimes inspiring stories of 9/11, now told 10 years later, I find this one to be remarkable.

One of the F-16's scrambled to intercept Flight 93 before it got to Washington, was flown by a woman. And she was sent up there, without a single thing to shoot that commercial airliner down with.

“We wouldn’t be shooting it down. We’d be ramming the aircraft,” Penney recalls of her charge that day. “I would essentially be a kamikaze pilot.”…
They screamed over the smoldering Pentagon, heading northwest at more than 400 mph, flying low and scanning the clear horizon. Her commander had time to think about the best place to hit the enemy.
“We don’t train to bring down airliners,” said Sasseville, now stationed at the Pentagon. “If you just hit the engine, it could still glide and you could guide it to a target. My thought was the cockpit or the wing.”
He also thought about his ejection seat. Would there be an instant just before impact?
“I was hoping to do both at the same time,” he says. “It probably wasn’t going to work, but that’s what I was hoping.”
Penney worried about missing the target if she tried to bail out.
“If you eject and your jet soars through without impact . . .” she trails off, the thought of failing more dreadful than the thought of dying.

Now, let's begin with the shameful part of this nugget. Somehow, with the BILLIONS upon BILLIONS our nation spends on military and defense, we were caught so badly with our pants down that day, the only thing on our "rapid response" fighters was a nice glossy coat of tire shine on the wheels.

The F-16 can be armed with any of the following array of bad-ass armaments: AIM-9 Sidewinder missiles, HARM's, Hydra 70 rockets, bombs, and a bunch of other crap too numerous to spell out here. It also has an onboard M61 Vulcan cannon gatling gun, which I suppose was doing nothing more than holding paper clips or old Pentagon receipts.

I guess that's bureaucracy for you.

Yet despite that, our bravest men - AND WOMEN - ran into harm's way on that day, without a moment's hesitation. And they did so, against an enemy who thinks the only place for women in their society is under a bedsheet, and in constant fear of severe beatings or a good stoning.

Our women, are given the opportunity to fly a high tech modern marvel that requires steel nerves, intelligence that is off the charts, and costs $14 million each.

They will also give their own life, to save others.

Welcome to America. I've never been prouder.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Joe Pa Fires 'Em Up!

The old man can still fire up the student body, can't he?

and... while he's' shaking his cane around.... YOU KIDS GET OF HIS DAMN LAWN!

Friday, September 9, 2011

Dan Snyder Doesn't Need To Read To Know When You Are Being Mean

To say that Dan Snyder likes to carry a low profile in the media, is an understatement. Unlike Jerry Jones, Bob Kraft, or others, Snyder just does very little in terms of interviews for print or TV. Often, they are hand picked outlets, controlled, and limited.

So I always find it interesting when a piece pops up out of nowhere, like this one from the NY Times' Magazine.

I would have never known he did this interview, unless somebody sent me the link. A few things in this piece strike me.

1. Dan, dude. Love the new "casual" look you are rockin! I used to always joke: finding a picture of Snyder NOT in a business suit, was harder than finding a clear picture of the Loch Ness Monster. No longer. I'm guessing that's a calculated move to improve your image. Well played.

2. Apparently, Snyder admits he never actually READ the article in the City Paper that prompted a million dollar lawsuit. Wow. I mean, was it THAT hurtful, he couldn't even bear the emotional scars of reading it all? I would have highlighted things, and made notes - IF I was going to commit considerable dollars to a lawsuit. Or, at the very least, when a reporter asked me "did you read it" I would simply say "yes." And leave it at that.

3. He thought the 2005 season, which led to a playoff win in Tampa before a loss the next round in Seattle was "our year." That was a year where they lost 36-0 to the Giants, and were 5-6 before making a late rally to win 5 straight to claim a wildcard. Not what I'd call "our year." The win in Tampa, saw the offense "roll up" a stunning 120 yards of total offense. Brunell was 7-15 for 41 yards and a pick. "Our year."

4. Solar panels are "beautiful" in his eyes. And you can plug in your Volt. Um, how many Volts are on the road right now, anywhere? Six? And is that FREE electricity for your Volt? Knowing how everything costs something at FedEx, I would be quite surprised if that's the case.

5. The amazingly aggressive tone of the interviewer. I mean, wow. He brings up the whole "some fans want you dead" angle. Then he practically begs Snyder to sell the team and go away. If Snyder was hoping this would be a relatively gentle piece, well, I'd say that failed.

Things I Am No Longer Going To Get Worked Up About Watching The NFL

I know that following this list is perhaps impossible. But if I can pull it off, I will have a much more serene experience enjoying tackle football on Sundays.

- Overly long replay reviews
- Late start times for MNF
- Shitty refs
- Illogical suspensions/fines
- Dumb rules (I'm looking at YOU, Mr. "Illegal Shift.")
- Al Michaels' mediocrity
- The Prevent Defense
- Worthless Sideline Announcers
- Obviously botched replay calls
- Rex Grossman
- Mike Shanahan never saying anything of note
- Football Night In America's lack of highlights
- Bad beats against the point spread

In addition, I officially resign from being the one of the NFL's slavishly slobbering media sycophants. Yes, I love football. Especially the "pro" variety. But I'm done "shining the league's shield." I refuse to call it the (/insert faux gravitas) NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE....

Great game. Great athletes. And as for the league itself, eh. I'm done trying to tell it to stop doing the stupid shit it's been doing as of late, on many fronts. Do what you want. Let me know how it works out.

In other words... serenity now.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Because We Spare No Expense As An Organization

For years now, my football team, the Washington Redskins, have blissfully bounced along without an indoor practice facility - bubble or full hangar - to practice in when weather goes south.

Only a handful of teams in the league do not have one, and they are almost all in very warm cities.

Well, finally our beloved leader and owner Daniel M. Snyder has gotten the permits done and is constructing a "bubble" which will be done sometime in early November.

Unfortunately, the Giants are here on Sunday. This, Sunday.

It has been raining since Monday.

So, no worries, our guys just CARPOOLED TO A LOCAL LIFETIME FITNESS to get some good quality reps in today for the Giants game.


And we're an NFL team, worth $1.4 billion, last time I checked.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

"I'm LeBron Baby!"

In fact, I am starting to think that "yes, yes you are!" And that's not a good thing, either.

I remember the quote attributed to Obama at the 2004 Democratic Convention: "I’m LeBron, baby. I can play on this level. I got some game.”

Neil Minkoff of the National Review Online makes a great comparison to perhaps the two biggest "global icons" we have here in America.
The most compelling part of the Barack Obama–LeBron James comparison is the baffling way each wilts when the lights are brightest and the stakes highest. LeBron has now appeared in two championship series (2007, 2011) and an Eastern Conference finals (2010), where he played poorly and shrank whenever the game was tight in the fourth quarter. LeBron didn’t want the ball and played hot potato whenever the ball found its way to him. Similarly, Obama is said to be “leading from behind” when he dishes off health-care reform and negotiating the debt-ceiling agreement to Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid. Obama has passed responsibility for Gitmo policy and trials for terror suspects to Eric Holder, his attorney general. The buck has been passed to NATO for our military presence in Libya. At each crisis, Barack Obama hasn’t wanted to take responsibility for a decision, so he relied on his teammates in his cabinet and Congress to carry him.
The footnote to this excellent piece, is that LeBron still remains VERY popular for a large segment of the sports public that - believe it or not - just doesn't put too much stock in that pesky thing called "winning."

Just like, I am sure, Obama remains popular for a large segment of the population that - believe it or not - just doesn't get too wrapped up in the fact his policies have all been abject failures.

Let Czabe's League Begin!

Hey Dooonnnnnnkeeeeeeys!

Wanna win cool useful leftover prizes from Czabe's big ol' closet o' fun? Well, then you better get signed up for the hottest game this side of that stale ol' boring "fantasy" (yawn) football.

Craction, baybee!

Reasons to Play

1. It's fun.
2. It's free.
3. Czabe's prizes.
4. Did I mention, "free?"

Okay, that's all you need. While you are wasting time at work on the interwebs, waste 5 good minutes to make your picks, and to get familiar with Craction. It's super fun, and trust me, the prizes will get better as the weeks go on.

For example, up for grabs this week to our winner, is an actual vintage signed Packer mini-helmet from circa. 1994. I really can't peg what team it was from, but I do recognize Bernardo Harris, Wayne Simmons, and Lamont Hollingquest's various "John Hancocks" on that puppy, so hey.

How 'bout that.

Yours if you win. Right from the very shelves of my office at home. Can I make a bigger sacrifice than that?


Go there now, sign up, and get crackin' on Craction.

Monday, September 5, 2011

The Teenage Rocket Sled to Trouble

And what this sweet little freckle-faced, braces wearing faux-picture of teenage innocence did NOT mention as side benefits of giving your kid a cell phone....

- You can then start calling your new teenage boyfriend at any time, from anywhere, without your parents knowing anything about it.
- You can discuss when and where to lose your virginity together.
- You can text him naked pictures of yourself that will be used later for internet humiliation, retaliation, blackmail, and perhaps lead to suicide.
- You can become a self-absorbed Facebook generation dope, with little intellectual curiosity or awareness outside your social media "bubble."
- You now have a phone number where internet predators can reach you directly, at any time.
- You can text while driving, and possibly kill yourself and your friends.

Oh.. the benefits are endless. But remember: "young love" can never blossom at a bowling alley date. No, it takes a cell phone and Facebook for that to happen.


Sunday, September 4, 2011

He's Forever In Our Hearts, er... Cups

I'm actually kind of torn on this one.

On the one hand, selling your leftover souvenir soda cups of a horrible-idea-gone-even-worse trade, smacks of Grade A douchebaggery.

On the other hand, if the buyer knows his $6 soda is going to have last year's "star" on it, instead of this year's "star" (ahem, Rex Grossman?) and he still happens to admire said person no matter whose team he's on.... well... then what's the harm.

I suppose this is better than 50,000 little starving kids in Africa getting the old McNabb cups and having to use them to dig ditches for their straw houses because they not only don't have any soda to put in them, they barely have any water.

Verdict: okay.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Let The Chinese Downhill Begin!

As we push off from shore for another FBS season, I think I've reached the tipping point where I am a bigger fan of the Saturday game, than I am of the Sunday game.

It doesn't help, that my pro team has been everybody's favorite homecoming opponent the last decade.

But the college game just has so much flavor. So much chaos. So much variation in styles, settings, uniforms and coaches.

The pro game is finely polished corporate product. High level, yes. But too often predictable, and increasingly homogenized. Go ahead, smear vaseline over some eyeglasses, flip around, and try to tell me which teams you are watching.

The college game - and system - meanwhile, is hopelessly corrupt. As my friend Drew Magary at Deadspin notes:

Everything about the sport is intractably corrupt. The coaches are corrupt. The boosters are corrupt. The schools are corrupt. The idiotic postseason is broken up into 35 separate retarded entities that are all INDIVIDUALLY corrupt. The governing body of the sport (the NCAA) is corrupt and is also so fucked up that they don't really have any say over that same postseason, which makes no logical sense.

The networks are corrupt. Consider the progression of UT's Longhorn Network, which the school operates with the self-feeding s**t demon that is ESPN. Bad enough that Texas got its own network (was CMT not enough for these folks?), which was basically akin to the rest of Big 12 allowing Texas to barge into their homes and s**t on the furniture. Then the network was going to air high school games, then the Big 12 (said) "Uhhh, you probably shouldn't do that for, like, a year." Then the NCAA straggled in later on like a deadbeat parent and decided Texas couldn't do it at all. The sport is so f***ed that the network had to navigate through two separate corrupt entities before being somewhat constrained by a third corrupt entity. Even the f***ing ANNOUNCERS are corrupt (Hi, Craig James! Your son's a gash!). This is a sport so hopelessly screwed that it makes the United States government look efficient by comparison. Every national title won is just WAITING to be vacated.

And if I may pile on...

It's a sport where the urge to win is so fanatic, a coach puts a student on a 30 foot lift to film practice, he falls in 50 mph winds and dies, AND NOT A SINGLE PERSON GETS FIRED!

A sport where a rival winning the title is enough to drive one man to not just poison two beloved oak trees in the rivals' town, but to GO ON THE RADIO AND BRAG ABOUT IT!

In other words: "To hell with the legal ramifications. I want CREDIT for this act of fandom!"

What happens when the corrupt poop hits the big fan?

Basically, nothing.

Nobody at Ohio State got fired above Jim Tressell after the whole Lies, Tattoos, and Memorabilia Scandal. The Fiesta Bowl didn't lose it's BCS status after John Junker took it to the Bernie Madoff cleaners. The NCAA looked at $cam Newton's dad's admission he ASKED for $180,000 for his son's services, but basically decided they had a bad headache, didn't have time for this nonsense, and needed to just lie down for a while.

But there is an upside to all of this hypocricy, lawlessness, greed and mayhem.

It's awesome to watch.

A real playoff would be nice. But for now, I am learning to embrace the "Chinese Downhill" nature of the college football regular season.

Oh, you don't know about the "Chinese Downhill?"

Not a big fan of the cult classic movie "Hot Dog?"

Well then, take a gander below.

That, my friends, is the FBS season in a nutshell. It's a bunch a teams barreling downhill with only loose rules, and lots of spectacular wipeouts along the way.

Is it fair? Hell no! Does it always produce the most worthy champion? Not on your life.

But it is, fun. So let's pull up a folding plastic lawn chair and grab a beverage.