Friday, November 17, 2006

Friday 11/17 A.M. Quickie:
One Game To Rule Them All

Housekeeping: See the post below for a short explanation of why the blog looks the same today as it did yesterday, despite my claims of a so-called relaunch as "" on WordPress.

Ohio St vs. Michigan Mania: It's the "Regular Season Game of the Century!" (Certainly "Pre-Game-Hype Game of the Year," surpassing 1-vs-2 Ohio St vs. Texas.) I've got more on this game coming in its own post later this morning, but I absolutely agree with any argument that, on paper, it's the Game of the Century, Regular Season Edition. (The bar for overall "Game of the Century" is tough to top: That would be last season's Rose Bowl between USC and Texas.)

WVA 45, Pitt 27: West Virginia is positioning itself to steal Rutgers' BCS auto-bid as Big East champs. WVA meets Rutgers in Morgantown on Dec. 2; a WVA win sends the league to a tie-breaker, based on BCS ranking. Of course, if Rutgers can win in Morgantown to cap an unbeaten regular season, they'll have earned their spot in the BCS title game. No other team in the country (outside of the Ohio St-Michigan winner) would have a claim to two wins as "quality" as those.

Johan Santana wins AL Cy: Unanimously, as expected/projected/hoped here. The only question is where Johan ranks among all pitchers over the decade. He's certainly in the mix for No. 1, wouldn't you say?

A's promote Geren: Couldn't the A's have saved a lot of time, trouble and resources in their managerial search by simply promoting bench coach Bob Geren at the outset? Was he the best choice, the choice by default or what?

College Hoops: Another ranked team bites it. Unranked Michigan State beat No. 19 Texas. As usual, when Michigan State is unranked, that's usually a good indicator they're vastly underrated.

More CBB: Big night for two of my Final Four teams. Florida stretched its winning streak to 14 (34 and 17 from Horford/Noah, who should BOTH be first-team All-Americans); Georgia Tech routed Georgia State, putting up 103 points.

NBA: Baron Davis Rules. He had what could be the Stat Line of the Year (so far): 36 points, 18 assists (career high) and 8 rebounds, leading the Warriors to their 4th straight win, over the previously sizzling Kings, no less.

PFHOF first-time semifinalists: Bruce Matthews, Terrell Davis and Randall McDaniel. I don't see any getting in. Does Matthews earn it simply for having a career length that was so prolific? If you let TD in, you have to let every few-year wonder in.

Pro video-game league: I missed this last week, but I've always been enthusiastic about the prospects of creating a pro-sports league of video-gamers. (They even have a TV deal.) If you're curious (I was), you can check it out here.

This week in movies: All the hype is for the new James Bond film, but who else is like me and can't wait for the new Christopher Guest movie, "For Your Consideration?" Between "Guffman," "Best in Show" and "Mighty Wind" (not to mention "Spinal Tap"), Guest and his ensemble might be the consistently funniest movie-makers of all time.

Finally, in the Best Story of the Day: A new study shows that chocolate milk might be more effective than sports drinks for helping athletes perform. Hershey's Messy Marvin trumps Gatorade's Peyton Manning?

-- D.S.


Anonymous said...

What about Rickey Jackson as a Hall of Famer?

Anonymous said...

What about Rickey Jackson as a Hall of Famer?

Matt T said...

So instead of seeing Athletes with the regular milk moustache we'll be seeing the chocolate milk moustache now?

Anonymous said...

That chocolate milk story reminds me of the SNL skit where they advertised for cookie dough in Gatorade-like bottles. I'd love to see a coach get a thermos of Hershey's dumped on them after a huge win...

Is Steve Slaton the NCAA's version of LT?

rukrusher said...

I was torn between rooting for a Pitt win to make RU's Big East title chances easier and the need for RU to face a strong WVU team to have a shot at the NC game. In the end I would rather have seen a Pitt win which would have alllowed RU to clinch a BCS bowl before 12/2 in Morgantown.

CMFost said...

"No other team in the country (outside of the Ohio St-Michigan winner) would have a claim to two wins as "quality" as those."

What about USC if they win? They would have wins over Cal and ND but they should not be in over Rutgers if they both win out. A one lose team in a major conference should never make it into the nat'l championship game over a major conference unbeaten.

Mikepcfl said...

I'm not saying he's a lock, but you have to take Terrell Davis' injury into consideration. For the "few years" he was as dominant as any RB in the game. And much more than Elway was the reason Denver finally won those 2 Super Bowls. I think the career-ending injury has to be taken into account and I think he will squeak in.

Anonymous said...

It would be an injustice if Art Monk didn't get into the Hall of Fame before those three.

Christian Thoma said...

"What about USC if they win?"

There's still some question as to how high quality a USC victory over ND would be.

Also, is OSU-UM this weekend?!? Sheesh, what's wrong with ABC and ESPN, not advertising it better?

Christian Thoma said...

And much more than Elway was the reason Denver finally won those 2 Super Bowls.

If failure to win a championship isn't a mitigating factor in making the HOF, then winning a championship shouldn't be a positive factor. Otherwise, we'd have to dedicate the Doug Williams and Desmond Howard Wing.

Anonymous said...

Injuries should not be a reason to put someone in the Hall. Pretty sure TD couldn't have held Bo Jackson's jock strap...and Bo doesn't know the Hall.

It's ok for there to exist very good players that aren't good enough for the Hall.

Gradishar and Irvin should get in. (imo)

Brian in Oxford said...


Will you cover the pro video gamers league, up until they start playing NHL 07?

Peyton Manning's got a gun for an arm, but has he ever shot his own eye out?

Do we think that a fluke loss (USC) shouldn't count against them as much as a manhandle loss (ND)? Because the argument against ND is that a really good team picked them apart. The argument against USC is that it was just one of those days, and wouldn't happen any of the other 9 times out of 10. ND wouldn't be "expected" to win 9/10 against Michigan.

Or is that just part of the subjectiveness involved with ranking the teams?

Anonymous said...

"Of course, if Rutgers can win in Morgantown to cap an unbeaten regular season, they'll have earned their spot in the BCS title game"

please stop with this nonsense that the big(l)east is a major conference, and that an undefeated winner of said conference somehow "deserves" a shot at the national championship game. just because someone(ncaa) says it is so(bcs conference), doesn't make it so. bully for rutgers if they do beat wvu, but there are at least 10 better teams out there. just another example of why we need a playoff. and if i hear anyone else say that the next few weeks are somehow some "defacto playoff" i think i will hurl.

Anonymous said...

Anybody who actually watched WVU/PITT last night (especially the first half)would have to agree that the Big East is a total joke. Nobody plays a lick of defense. It's comical.

With that said - since Peterson got injured for the year, I think Slaton might be the best player in the entire country. Good luck, Rutgers ...

Also, did anybody else (Dan?) catch Fowler's mini-rant about how the regular season is NOT a playoff, and that he wishes people would stop calling it that?

Anonymous said...

i admit to channeling fowler on my previous post. "mr. no playoff" herbstreit was very silent in the moments after. high comedy

TBender said...

Nobody plays D in the Big East? So?

The Pac-10.

Mikepcfl said...

Let me throw this out there. If Tom Brady suffered a career-ending injury on Sunday, should he be a Hall of Famer? If you think yes, than TD should get in. They both would have about the same length of dominance, plus leading their teams to multiple Super Bowl wins. Just a point of discussion.

And personally, I think Bo was the most amazing athlete I've ever seen. If he had led Oakland to 2 Super Bowls, I would have to give him consideration.

TBender said...

As for PFHOF...

Roger Wehrli. Best CB in the 1970's.

Should already be in the Hall, but voters won't get past the fact he played for St. Louis.

TJ said...

Meh. Spinal Tap is amazing, obviously, and Best in Show was fun, but A mighty Wind was... amusing at best, and For Your Consideration has rental written all over it.

The Bond, on the other hand--is great. And packs an emotional punch that... well, you're not used to in a Bond movie.

Steve said...

The added bonus of the chocolate milk mustache is that it looks like a dirty sanchez, right Screech?

As far as Terrell Davis and his 2 Super Bowls, you also have to take into consideration that the Broncos cheated the cap those 2 years and thus had an unfair competitive advantage. The NFL should have made them forfeit them in my opinion but in any case they are at least tainted titles. Terrell Davis is not a hall of famer.

CMFost said...

Dan you are missing a bunch of potential HOF's that are on the semifinalist list.

What about:
Richard Dent
Micheal irvin
Art Monk
Paul Tagilibue
Derrick Thomas
Thurman Thomas
Andre Tippett

Here is the full lit of semi finalists:

Terrell Davis - RB - 1995-2001 Denver Broncos
Dermontti Dawson - C - 1988-2000 Pittsburgh Steelers
Fred Dean - DE - 1975-1981 San Diego Chargers, 1981-1985 San Francisco 49ers
Richard Dent - DE - 1983-1993, 1995 Chicago Bears, 1994 San Francisco 49ers, 1996 Indianapolis Colts, 1997 Philadelphia Eagles
Randy Gradishar - LB - 1974-1983 Denver Broncos
Kevin Greene - LB/DE - 1985-1992 Los Angeles Rams, 1993-1995 Pittsburgh Steelers, 1996, 1998-1999 Carolina Panthers, 1997 San Francisco 49ers
Russ Grimm - G - 1981-1991 Washington Redskins
Ray Guy - P - 1973-1986 Oakland/Los Angeles Raiders
Charles Haley - DE/LB - 1986-1991, 1999 San Francisco 49ers, 1992-1996 Dallas Cowboys
Lester Hayes - CB - 1977-1986 Oakland/Los Angeles Raiders
Michael Irvin - WR - 1988-1999 Dallas Cowboys
Bob Kuechenberg - G - 1970-1984 Miami Dolphins
Bruce Matthews - G/T/C - 1983-2001 Houston Oilers/Tennessee Oilers/Titans
Randall McDaniel - G - 1988-1999 Minnesota Vikings, 2000-2001 Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Art Modell - Owner - 1961-1995 Cleveland Browns, 1996-2003 Baltimore Ravens
Art Monk - WR - 1980-1993 Washington Redskins, 1994 New York Jets, 1995 Philadelphia Eagles
Andre Reed - WR -1985-1999 Buffalo Bills, 2000 Washington Redskins
Ken Stabler - QB - 1970-1979 Oakland Raiders, 1980-1981 Houston Oilers, 1982-1984 New Orleans Saints
Paul Tagliabue - Commissioner - 1989-2006 National Football League
Derrick Thomas - LB - 1989-1999 Kansas City Chiefs
Thurman Thomas - RB - 1988-1999 Buffalo Bills, 2000 Miami Dolphins
Andre Tippett - LB - 1982-1993 New England Patriots, injured 1989
Roger Wehrli - CB - 1969-1982 St. Louis Cardinals
George Young - GM/Administrator - 1968-1974 Baltimore Colts, 1975-1978 Miami Dolphins, 1979-1997 New York Giants, 1998-2001 National Football League
Gary Zimmerman - T - 1986-1992 Minnesota Vikings, 1993-1997 Denver Broncos

Chaddogg said...

I gotta disagree with you, Dan, on the game of the century (so far) sentiments. There is NO doubt in my mind that OSU-Michigan this week trumps USC-Texas last year in the Rose Bowl.

Sure, USC-Texas involved 3-4 Heisman candidates/2 winners (VYoung, Bush, Leinart, LenDale White), and was the last game of the season, and involved 2 undefeated teams ranked 1-2.

But this is Michigan-Ohio State. 100 years of tradition. The game of the year in the Big Ten year in, year out (and I say that as a Northwestern fan and alum). Every other team in the Big Ten measures themselves against these teams (and more often than not come up short). Bo vs. Woody. Two of the best venues in college football. Fan bases that flat out hate each other (demonstrated perhaps best by the perhaps fictional story of Woody's car running out of gas one time in Michigan and him walking all the way to Ohio to fill it up).

But more than that, it's a 1-2 matchup on the last day of the regular season that didn't need voters, or computers, or polls to happen. The two best teams in the country (without a doubt), playing one game for pretty much an undisputed national championship (I think both will kill their bowl opponents, unless we get the rematch).

USC-Texas was nice, but this is the game of the Century (so far).

Christian Thoma said...


Let's wait until they play the game. There's no way OSU-UM is the Game of the Century if one of the teams wins by 30.

Mikepcfl said...

After seeing the entire list, I would not put TD in this year. I still think he should get strong consideration and will get in eventually. But I would put these guys ahead of him:

Andre Reed
D. Thomas
T. Thomas

(Yes, I purposely left Monk off the list. Sorry Redskin fans)

CMFost said...

"Creepiest story of the day - man who was supposed to be on the plane with Lidle when it crashed, died in a plane crash yesterday...creepy."

Ever see the 3 Final Destination movies???

Someone tell me why the Big East is thought of as a poor conference. Do they not currently have 3 teams in the top 10 of the BCS Standings.

Looking at the major conferences here is what each has for teams in the BCS Standings

SEC - 5 - Ranks 4,7,11,14,22
ACC - 5 - 16,18,19,20,21
Big 10 - 3 - 1,2,9
Big East - 3 - 6,8,10
Pac 10 - 3 -3,15,24
Big 12 - 3 -13,17,23
Other - 3 - 5,12,25

So again tell me why the big east is considered so poorly.

Pete said...

MSU MSU MSU! It was great to see the guys in green here in NYC last night. Everyone (including you Dan) didn't have them on the radar BUT NEVER discount the Izzone! That guy can coach.

Anonymous said...


i will gladly tell you why the big east is thought of as a poor conference. THEY DON'T PLAY ANYBODY - and that includes each other. the reason they have those 3 teams in the bcs is because of their records...obtained by beating substandard non-conference opponents and each other. just because idiot pollsters fall for the shiny records does not make them good teams. if someone says the ocean is orange, it doesn't make it so. now i don't mean to say that they are shitty...but they just don't compare to the major conference schools out there. i know you apologists will bring up what wvu did to uga in the sugar bowl last year, but lets face it: the only bowl game with real meaning was usc-tx. that is why the bowl system is outdated and a playoff is needed.

CMFost said...

pootietang, I completely agree that there needs to be either an 8 or a 16 team playoff at the end of the regular season. Where I disagree is if Rutgers wins out the will have 2 wins against top 10 teams and only the winner of Ohio/Michigan and the winner of USC/ND could say that.


Brian in Oxford said...

The argument, ndyanks, is twofold....

One, ND got manhandled....So it seemed less fluky. It's believable in my mind that if ND-Mich played 10 times, Mich wins at least 7 out of 10, because the one they did win in real life looked convincing. USC's loss was to a much worse team, and only by 2 points. That seems more of a "any given Saturday" argument, not indicative of the relative strength between USC and Oregon St.

My point being...both ND and USC have lost a game. USC's was fluky. ND's looked more damning to their own argument. ND says "yeah, we only lost once, and it was to really good Michigan. you guys lost to a crappy team." USC's argument is "you guys showed you're OBVIOUSLY worse than Michigan....we just had a fluke upset."

If ND had beaten Michigan, and their only loss was a tight one to Michigan State instead....then I'd say THAT was an equivalent loss to USC's....a team they play every year, not as good, but pulled off an upset.

I like the argument for USC at this point over the argument for Notre Dame. It's not going to matter once they play in a couple of weekends....But until then, USC's argument makes more sense to me.

Steve said...


Sorry, but I guess I'm not the deuche after all, they cheated, the titles are tainted.

Brian in Oxford said...

It's one thing to dismiss WV-Ga last year as not being the big bowl....but sheesh, it was IN Georgia.

Brian in Oxford said...

Hey, we do all have to wonder this. Will the East Coast bias push Rutgers higher? After all, NYC doesn't have a college football team (Army?) worth singing about....Rutgers is about as close as there is. College football certainly doesn't have the same Boston-NY-Philly-DC domination that the pro sports do. This could be a chance for the NY media to play up a team from its area.

Brian in Oxford said...

I'm getting a vibe that you usually see in basketball....St. Joe's can't be a #1 seed, they haven't played anyone! Or Memphis....

And then St. Joe's proved they were at least worthy of the seed, winning 3 games before losing a nailbiter to #2 OSU.

The problem is that football's only got a one game playoff, rather than 64-game, so the teams that get left out are really OUT....not simply playing from a lower seed. Teams that end up the #3 seed in their region in March still get to disprove the merit of the ranking. Football teams don't.

TJ said...

Let them go to a different BCS bowl and beat a USC, Michigan/OSU loser, Florida type school and win... then we'll see about next year.

Ummm... This happened last year. You know, when WVU proved that their offense can score on any defense. And UGA had a fast defense last year.

Every single argument people use to disparage the Big East could be applied to other so-called major conferences, only because it's called the Big East, and because it doesn't have Miami anymore, and because Rutgers is its best team, there's some psychological block keeping people from acknowledging that these are good teams, every bit as worthy as Florida, ND, USC or anyone else of playing in the BCS Championship.

Kevin said...

USC-Texas game of the century? Maybe, but don't forget the epic OSU-Miami final that was all of four years ago...