June 23, 2006

"Facts are for pussies."

I usually don’t concern this space of my world for pro sports, but when you’re in the middle of the darkest corner of the off-season you are left to your own devices.

From time to time I read “Blog Maverick”, written by none other than Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban. Most of his entries swamp me with technical jargon about his second love, HDNet. However, from time to time, Cuban will touch on a subject or two that appeal to me as insider information. Primarily, I read because where else can you get insight to the thoughts of an NBA general manager that aren’t whitewashed by their team’s public relations staff? (Boy, an Isiah Thomas blog would be damn interesting right about now, but I digress.)

Cuban even relates in one of his most recent entries that he blogs for an outlet of his competitiveness. I like that about him as well. In his last entry, Cuban mentions sports writers (and business people) who work in “headline mode”, not taking the time to provide substance for an article, but rather reacting to a deadline.

Cuban’s latest headline maker was apparently a statement made towards David Stern, NBA Commissioner after Game 5 of the NBA Finals. Cuban was alleged to have said, “your league is rigged”, which he denounced on his blog as being not true in two forms: he didn’t make the statement, and the league cannot be rigged. Stern even claimed that Cuban sat close enough for him to never hear the comment. Didn’t stop Greg Cote, writer for the Miami Herald to move forward on the alleged quote.

Fast forward to the Mike & Mike show on ESPN Radio and their contacting Cote on the source of who confirmed that Cuban made the statement. His answer? He heard from a guy, who heard from a guy, who heard Cuban’s statement. Excuse me? A guy who knows a guy who heard? Are you kidding me?

Apparently Mr. Cote went to the Steven Colbert School of Journalism – “facts are for pussies”. Topping that assertion was the Herald’s reporting that Cuban had his boat parked in a Miami marina with a “Go Mavs Go” banner proudly displayed. One problem, Cuban writes he has never owned a boat. Good job gang. Maybe Cuban’s blog is two fold: releasing his intensity and being able to have his own platform to refute such nonsense.

Either way, it’s good reading.

June 16, 2006

The latest discussion for the men of the Blog Poll roundtable:

1. Best pre-season mag.
Well, I bought my first Phil Steele mag and I must say I understand all the hoopla as well. One dude who watches 12 TVs on the weekend and writes all his own previews has me misty-eyed. Lucky bastard.

2. Overrated team.
It’s Michigan, as always. Just count off the hype with me: This will be the year that Chad Henne becomes an elite quarterback. (He’s not that bad.) This is the year that Steve Breaston will live up to the hype and become the next great UM receiver. (Wrong. He’s a good return man, period.) This is the year that Mike Hart will return to freshman form when he ripped everyone. (Needs to happen.)

My hunch is that all three need to happen for Michigan to challenge for the Big Ten. I’m laying out some cash that 2 out of 3 ain’t bad, which describes the Wolverines.

3. Underrated team.
Georgia. The Bulldogs have the best record of any team since 2000 that hasn’t won a national championship. The Dawgs under Mark Richt seemingly reload and everyone is worried about the loss of Shockley under center and whether Tereshinski can beat out Stafford or Cox. Why worry? The Dawgs have capable running backs and the receiving corps was never lights out during their six seasons with Richt. The Dawgs will do just fine, until their usual loss in Jacksonville, but they will remain in the SEC championship discussion up to the bitter end.

4. Best conference in 2006
The SEC, hands down.

5. Best non-BCS conference in 2006
I like Conference USA. UTEP, Memphis, Southern Mississippi, Tulsa, Central Florida, and Houston were all winners and could each duplicate the feat in 2006. UAB and Marshall will be tougher.

6. Best non-BCS team
Utah will enjoy one more year under Urban’s kids.

7. Heisman, but you can’t take BQ.
Steve Slaton, West Virginia vs. Michael Bush, Louisville. Their game in October is one that is not getting nearly enough hype. Both will tear up the Big East, which could help or hurt their voting appeal.

June 07, 2006

Scheduling for the Outhouse

It doesn't look good.

Conversely, you can schedule yourself right out of any chance of making any noise in college football. Here are some teams that will have their coaches and athletic directors re-evaluating each others' skills:

Oregon - Games 2-5 consist of at Fresno State, Oklahoma, at California, at Arizona State. Remember they still have to visit USC. Good luck Gang Green.

Florida - at Tennessee, at Auburn, Georgia in Jacksonville, and at Florida State. Urban's guys are still a year away from the field, folks. This is still a team that was handled by lesser opponents in 2005.

Penn State's September - at Notre Dame and at Ohio State in the first month, all while trying to break in a new quarterback and defense.

Tennessee - home against Cal in game one, later against Florida, at Georgia, at Spurrier, while Bama and LSU come to Knoxville. Sure hope Fulmer has the team on the same page otherwise he will be the first fired national championship coach I can remember.

Texas - yeah, no Vince Young - blah, blah, blah - but the Horns will have their hands full with Ohio State at home, Oklahoma in Dallas, and then road traps at Texas Tech and Nebraska. They have the talent but they could experience Fat & Happy Syndrome.

LSU - True, the Tigers only have four road games: at Auburn, at Florida, at Tennessee, and against a vastly improved Arkansas team. Interesting home game against Fresno State as well.

UCLA - Alright, my five loyal readers, mark it down now on June 7th. The Bruins will start 5-0. Then they will fade as usual when they run the at Oregon, at Notre Dame, at Cal, at Arizona State, home against USC slate. 6-5 finish. Lock it.

About Me

My photo
Heavenly time period: College football season until the championship game of March Madness.