Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Tuesday 03/27 A.M. Quickie:
Donovan, Final Four, Jaworski, More

Tons of thoughts while re-watching replays of Rasheed's 60-footer...

The hot story of both the day and the week leading up to the Final Four is the fate of Florida coach Billy Donovan.

Would Donovan really leave
Florida for Kentucky? AOL FanHouse has been all over this story, and here's a link with the latest gossip -- suggesting (by UK fans) it's a done deal. I say: Wrong.

First off: I don't think he'll go to UK. It won't be about money: Florida will match or exceed any Kentucky offer. And, as I've said before, I don't think Kentucky is a better program than Florida right now. Why would Billy walk from what he's built up for a rebuilding job?

More realistically: There is the idea that if Florida wins a second straight national title (or even if they don't), Donovan will have done as much as he possibly could EVER do in Gainesville. He might as well leave after that, right? There's some merit to this.

But I'd argue this would push him to a coaching job in the NBA, not another college. He has always said the NBA is intriguing to him, and it's not like he won't get offers (no matter what the sorry record of college-to-NBA coaches is). Fans can't begrudge a jump from college to the pros.

Apparently, the Heat are hot for him, which would be a great fit. He could stay in-state and enjoy the services of a Top 3 NBA superstar. (I was thinking Bobcats, because Jordan would want to make a big splash and the team is essentially a bunch of college kids anyway. But who would want to play for MJ? Worst boss ever.) Originally, I thought he was a lock for the Knicks, but as they're keeping Isiah, that seems to be a non-starter (lucky for Donovan).

From everything I understand, Donovan was going to wait all along until the end of the season to do his extension. Rather than creating uncertainty, isn't this the stand-up thing to do? After all, can you imagine the crap he'd get if he spent this week negotiating a lucrative personal contract extension, rather than focusing on the Final Four?

That would go against everything he has preached to his team; it's why he didn't sign an extension last April – he said that if his players would defer their NBA payoff to return, he'd defer his big payoff for a year, too. So his silence isn't a signal he's got a deal with UK. It simply fuels wishful thinking by Cats fans.

As for the Heat? It wouldn't surprise (or offend) me, and it shouldn't surprise (or offend) Gator Nation.

Let's move on...

My favorite stat of the Tournament (remaindered from yesterday): Nearly 162,000 people correctly predicted this year's Final Four in ESPN.com's Tournament Challenge. (Last year's total of correct Foursomes? Four.)

Thanks to the Commenters for pointing out some possible Glaring Omissions in yesterday's Top 5 CBB teams since 1985: '94-95 Arkansas and '01-02 Maryland.

Given my list, I think teams are generally given a lot more credit for following the "win a title first, then get back to the Final Four and lose" than "get to the Final Four and lose, then go back to the Final Four and win a title."

Maybe that's because defending a title is so much harder than winning a first one.

Quickie-ish College Hoops All-Americans: As the AP has released their All-America teams, most notable for putting freshmen on the first team for only the third time ever (and there were two of 'em this year, Durant and Oden).

It's time for my picks, in order of how worthy they are to be on the team:

1st team: Durant, Law, J. Green, Tucker, Hansbrough.

2nd team: Oden, Horford, Afflalo, Lofton, Dudley.

Billy Gillespie to Arkansas? I know the guy is a job-jumper, but I would have thought he would have held out for Kentucky, which would eventually trickle down to him after all the "No's" from the bigger names.

Gillespie would have Arkansas near the top of the SEC within two seasons. Just be forewarned Hogs fans: He would use that to vault to a better job by 2010.

(The latest update is that Texas A&M is going to sweeten the pot to keep him. Seriously: Given the foundation Gillespie has put in, the Aggies job is a better one than coaching at Arkansas.)

Rick Pitino not leaving Louisville for Kentucky: Yet another high-profile coach who won't go to Lexington. (Psst: Because the job ain't as good as its fans think it is. In SAT analogy terms:
Alabama:CFB::Kentucky:CBB.)

Women's Tournament: You could tell Rutgers was destined for the Final Four when they beat Duke last weekend. You could tell LSU was destined for the Final Four when their successful coach was exiled for having a romantic relationship with a player.

They play each other in the Final Four: Something's gotta give.

I'm sticking with LSU and the ironic timing of winning a national title. (It's just like Michigan and Bill Frieder in 1989, except he was exiled for having an inappropriate relationship with Arizona State, not his own player.)

MLB: Joe Torre back in '08? If the Yankees don't win the World Series this year (or at least an AL pennant), he might not get a choice.

MLB Fantasy: Did you drop Kerry Wood and Duaner Sanchez yet? How about picking up new Marlins closer Jorge Julio for a few extra saves?

MLB Know the Name: Ria Cortesio, who will become the first female ump to work an MLB game (even if it's exhibition) in 20 years. (Remember the name "Pam Postema?")

My new Nats fandom: Apparently, most of the season tickets won't be delivered in time for the season's start. Excellent customer service for a team that will be lucky to win 40 games!

NFL Trade: Eagles get LB Takeo Spikes and QB Kelly Holcomb from the Bills for DT Darwin Walker and a cond'l '08 draft pick.

NFL: The hot catchphrase of the summer will be "personal conduct policy," the new hammer that the league plans to wield to club players and coaches into not being such assholes.

Suspensions (even up to a year) and fines are nice, but when the Commish starts talking about docking teams' draft picks, he's threatening in a language they can understand.

(Man, if the new policy had been in place over the last year, the Bengals wouldn't have a draft pick.)

NFL 2007 Season Opener: Saints at Colts, by far the best possible matchup, pairing the Super Bowl champs versus the league's top feel-good story.

Ron Jaworski to MNF: He will go down as the best analyst in the history of the show. Hopefully, it will finally affirm that the average MNF viewer doesn't want more entertainment -- they want more analysis.

(And yet, the USA Today story about the switch said that Joey T was TOO much about the in-game analysis, and not enough about analysis of the other news around the league. Fair enough: Jaws would be as expert about that as anyone, and you never got the sense that Joey T was comfortable riffing on the storylines from the rest of the league -- of course, game analysts rarely are, which is what makes Jaws such a good fit here and what makes next season's development of the show so intriguing: Sounds like they want MNF to be as much a three-hour talk about the week in the NFL as it is a three-hour talk about the game at hand.)

Roids Watch: How fast will it take the transfer of customer lists from the Albany DA's office to sports leagues for the names to come out in the media? My over-under is the end of the business week.

NBA: Rasheed from 60! Yet another sign that this is the Pistons' year to win the East.

NASCAR: I'm not sure there's a more promising marketing gimmick than "Car of Tomorrow." I don't even understand what it means. It just SOUNDS interesting.

NFL PacMan Watch: Jones to face felony charges? Seems like it was only a matter of time, didn't it?

NHL: Commish Bettman says fighting is "part of the game," after critics pop off about the need to curb it. (Bettman added that safety should be the first concern. Isn't it possible those are incompatible?)

Tennis: Serena heckler booted. I appreciate clever heckling, but there's very little place for it during a tennis match. And it's totally unacceptable when the heckling is racist.

Freaky story of the day: The news that there was a device to shoot poison darts into horses embedded in the track at Happy Valley in Hong Kong. This is weird. This is wrong. This is fascinating.

(It would, of course, be much more intriguing if they surreptitiously shot poison darts into visiting football players at Happy Valley in Penn State.)

Rest in peace, Jason Ray.

-- D.S.

65 comments:

jhawkjjm said...

Listening to Mike and Mike this morning on the way to work, they played a clip from "The Pulse" last night where someone (I didn't catch the name) said that Donovan to the Miami Heat was the most likely scenario. Not sure how true it is, but that's what was said.

Gillispie leaving A&M is bad for the Big XII. They had 6 new coaches this year and only Huggins did anything. Patton's gone in Colorado already so that would be 8 of 12 teams changing coaches in the past two years. I think he should stay, but $$$ talks. Arkansas is a bigger "name" school, but at A&M he can truly create a legacy as there were ZERO expectations when he took the job.

Gary said...

The celtics tricked me into watching Jorge Garbajosa's freakish injury. They prefaced it by saying, not as bad as Shaun Livingston's injury...well, I didn't realize I never watched Livingston's injury and the Garbajosa injury left me with the creeps/nightmares/nausea. I'm surprised you have no mention of it today Dan, unless you are refusing to watch it (wisely).

Mills said...

jhawk --

you can't expect results in the first year a coach takes over a program. McDermott (ISU) and Anderson (Mizzou) will both improve their programs in the next two years, and will be making NCAA appearances regularly thereafter (especially Iowa St. - McDermott is for real. Look what happened to Northern Iowa this year without him).

Dave said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dave said...

Your UK basketball coach to Alabama football coach analogy has a serious problem.

Alabama landed their high-profile coach that was thought to be untouchable. Even he thought he wasn't going =)

As far as the league docking teams draft picks for players getting trouble...I think this is a step too far. Obviously we don't know all the details of the new plan, because they are still making the new plan. However, if the league wants to punish invidual players who get into trouble, I'm all for that. But punishing the teams for individual player's indiscretions is a step too far.

Chaddogg said...

How did you ever get into my alma mater (NU) if you failed your SAT analogies that badly?

Correct choice? Alabama:CFB as Kentucky:CBB.

jhawkjjm said...

mills- that was part of my point. It was obvious that the Big XII overall was down this year because of the turnover. And really the only reason Huggins did anything was because K-State had good talent coming back. The Big XII may be even weaker next year with 2 more new coaches.

Caple and Anderson will have OU and Missouri competitive again soon. Iowa St and Nebraska will be competitive in a few years. K State will be good. Only one I"m not convinced of is Sean Sutton. He had a boatload of talent at OSU and they bombed this year.

Dan Mega said...

CBB ACT: SIU =)
CFB ACT: USC

Bite me!

Richard said...

Ok I posted something about this yesterday, but now I'm going to say who SHOULD be doing Monday Night Football.

Booth:
Ron Jaworsky - The best analyst ESPN has. Able to break down the QB position like noone else.

Bill Parcells - This would be amazing. They guy who always joked for the media becomming one of them. Bill/Jaws could be an incredible coach/QB compliment.

Suzy Kolber - I'm going to make one long shot for the play-by-play guy (girl). Play-by-play persons don't need credibility or experience, just a decent voice. I'm convinced she could pull it off and be better than anyone ESPN has.

Sideline reporters:
Tony Kornheiser - There wouldn't be anything better than TK walking up to a coach that just blew a chance for points before the half and asking "What's up with that?" or "can you get a TD to Crumpler? I have him in fantasy."

Mike Wilbon - Might as well. He's the perfect compliment to TK and you could get a PTI style debate during the game. Pure comedy.

verbal97 said...

There is absolutely no way Tony Kornheiser would ever agree to be a sideline reporter. Can you imagine him doing a cold-weather game in December? You couldn't pay him enough money to do that.

I do like your Suzy Kolber idea though.

DanShanoff.com said...

Thanks for the tips on Donovan-Heat from Mike/Mike. I updated the lead item to reflect it. Much appreciated.

rafael said...

I had all kinds of responses ready for this post, Dan..

but then i was short-circuited..

Joey T?! Since when does anyone give that kind of nickname to Theismann?? Joey T!>?!??!?! W. T. F.

I'm beside myself. Inconceivable.

Brian in Oxford said...

Car of Tomorrow? That reminds me of Avery Brooks (Hawk from Spenser for Hire, or Captain Sisko from DS9) doing those IBM ads a few years ago...."Where are the flying cars? It's the year 2000. I was promised flying cars."

UConn laid a nice egg last night. It sorta makes me want to hope for Tennessee, as UConn and Tennessee sorta represent the old school, at this point. (Although obviously, UT is older school.)

Honestly, Tony K. should go back to hosting the midday show on ESPN radio. And when was the last time anyone's heard from Andy Pollin on a national level?

A multi-player NFL trade? That's kind of a rarity.

Bettman saying fighting is part of the game is sorta like NHL fans saying Bettman's part of the game....ya just gotta accept it.

So Ricky Schroder's not THAT big a jerk after all....I suppose the last 8 hours of 24 must have something to do with that underling who tried to rat him out. (those aren't spoilers, right?)

Matt T said...

Given my list, I think teams are generally given a lot more credit for following the "win a title first, then get back to the Final Four and lose" than "get to the Final Four and lose, then go back to the Final Four and win a title." Maybe that's because defending a title is so much harder than winning a first one.

After reading that I still wonder how Duke isn't #1 as no one else has repeated since them.

Adam said...

Matt, that's because Duke isn't a basketball team. It's a group of leaders who happen to play basketball.

WeJamEcono said...

I can see staying in Gainseville and MAKING Basketball MORE important than football. Don't think it is possible? Win a few more championships and anything is possible. That would be ego gratification.

rafael said...

Dave,
If teams are punished via draft picks, maybe they'll get better about drafting people with character, which cuts down on the off-field issues, which negates losing draft picks.

It's a long-term plan, and I think it would work if the league stuck to it.
The Bengals KNEW they were drafting thugs. With this in place, maybe they'd rethink that draft mentality.

Brian in Oxford said...

Now that Jaws is going to be on the main MNF team, who will do that second game the first weekend?

Geoff said...

I was watching the Pistons game last night and turned it off after Billups missed a 3 pointer and they lost the ball out of bounds with 2 seconds left. Guess that will teach me to turn off a game early.

Car of Tomorrow is basically a standard body template for all NASCAR teams to use. So no more slight body differences between the Ford, Chevy,Dodge and Toyota cars. Also eliminates potential aero advantages between the manufactures. They are also supposed to be much safer cars.

Natsfan74 said...

I like it when our new bandwagon Nats fan keeps predicting a 120 loss season.

It's not like teh Nats are going to pull an '06 Marlins and surprise everyone, but they will not lose 100 games either.

And my season tickets will be here tonight. Much later than I ever hoped, but at least in time for Monday's opener. All season tickets were scheduled for delivery yesterday, but at least Fed Ex has my package in my town today.

Go back to liking your Florida Marlins or whatever other crappy team you want and quit kicking the Nationals while we're already down.

Todd said...

I dunno, I think the Nats are as close to a lock as it gets to a 100 loss team in the majors this year. I follow baseball pretty closely, and I can't name a single starter other than John Patterson, who is certainly no lock to stay healthy.

I do like Zimmerman though. Good cornerstone to build from.

rafael said...

lol

natsfan... can you really call someone who predictes 120 losses for your team a 'bandwagon fan'??

don't bandwagon fans jump on when a team is doing well?

Dave said...

Rafael,

I have no problem with the league suspending or canning players. I have no problem with the teams canning or suspending players. However, taking away draft picks because players on your team got arrested doesn't make any sense. Punish the player if the player breaks NFL rules. Punish the team if they (the team) breaks NFL rules.

However, don't punish the team for the actions of the individual. Especially if the infractions occur off the field.

Does it make any sense to punish the Bengals when Chad Johnson celebrates? Let the league and his team fine him independently, but don't have the league fine his team in addition.

If Pac-man Jones gets suspended (or even kicked out of the league) that's a big enough loss for the Titans (a bad investment in a "non character guy"). How does it make any sense to then also take away future draft picks?

Picking the wrong guy and making a bad investment is a big enough penalty all in itself.

Matt said...

I'm posting this as a UK fan who doesn't think that Donovan is coming but do think that we'll ratchet up the price for Florida.

That said, it still doesn't make any sense to me that people ignore the possibility. He has an ego (hence the NBA rumors). Bball will never be bigger than football at Florida (is anyone out there still watching Madness or are they focused on Spring Practice?). It's the opposite at UK (we have a team finally go to a bowl and no one cares about football that late in the year, even Bear Bryant won two titles at UK and left because no one paid attention after Midnight Madness). Fans as passionate as Wildcat fans have disadvantages but they sell out a 23,000+ arena for every single game where Florida only sold out an 18,000 capacity five times this year with the starting line-up for the defending champions intact. And Donovan's seen this first-hand on both benches in Rupp.

Again, I don't think he's going to UK (and I don't particularly want him as a UK fan). But don't think it's impossible. The money will be equal.

Andrew said...

the buffalo bills are really trying to get a head start on the ??briah brohm?? sweepstakes

CMFost said...

Donovan would be stupid to leave Florida for any Job but an NBA position

Biebs said...

I'd like to think that the character rules that the NFL is talking about, would not penalize a team for TD celebrations. The issue is drugs, guns, and DUIs. Chad Johnson celebrating in the endzone is not a threat to society quite like Tank Johnson or Ricky Manning (remember him?)

GuyInTheCorner said...

natsfan-

Living here and hearing some of the stuff about the Nats this year kind of scares me. You don't think that they could make a run at the loss record? They went into spring training with 1 starting pitcher!

By the way, last I heard, the rotation for the Nats looks something like this...

John Patterson- Shaun Hill- Matt Chico- Jason Simontacchi- Jason Bergmann

How have they not traded Chad Cordero yet? Getting anything is better than having him because they can't use him! Where is this lead that he will come in to protect?

Zimm is solid and Schneider is ok, but Lopez and Guzman? Come on. And what about Kearns the strikeout king with injured Nook who can't hit anyway combining with inexperienced Ryan Church for an "outfield".

Did I mention they have a DH who was cut from a team last year playing first base?

Yikes.

DougOLis said...

Won't Florida be a rebuilding program after this year too? They're going to lose all of their best players to the NBA.

Andy said...

Yeah, the Nationals will pretty much be terrible this year. Personally, I don't mind them a whole lot, because I feel like the franchise has gotten screwed in a lot of ways by MLB but they are horrible. Possible loss record breakers.

I honestly can't see Donovan going to Kentucky, but I also don't see this as a major story. I think the only reason we are commenting about it so much is because Bandwagon Dan dedicated half the morning Quickie to it. Seriously Dan. We don't care. Let's talk about this weekends games if we're going to talk about college basketball. Kentucky won't hire anyone until after the championship anyway.

Natsfan74 said...

Guy -- I mostly agree with you, actually. But considering that last year's starting rotation with proven veterans ran up the highest ERA in the league, we really have no where to go but up in that category. Our bullpen was good last year, and looks to be better this year (but I agree, trading Cordero might make some sense).

Zimmerman is the man and he is a future perennial all-star. I also think Schneider and Nick Johnson are pretty solid and are locked up for 3 more years each. Felipe Lopez is weak defensively, but is an upgrade over Vidro and will hit a little and steal a ton of bases. Guzman is having a good spring, but I don't ever expect anything from him. The outfield is going to be ok defensively, as Logan can track them down (but can't hit a lick) and Kearns is a good right fielder with a great arm. Offensively, the outfield might not be too bad either. Church, when healthy, has shown power and a decent average. Kearns has a perfect doubles swing for hitting in RFK, but does need to cut down on the Ks. Logan sucks. And Dmitri Young is still good offensively -- he wasn't cut for lack of production. I hope he can get his personal life in order for many reasons, but it would also help on the field.

I'd say 65-70 wins.

WuzUpG said...

Dan,
I really think you should start paying attention to the playoff push in the NHL. Its definitely a lot more interesting than the NBA playoff race.

In the NBA, my Warriors and Hornets are two games out and most of the playoff positioning is pretty much set in the West. In the East, the Pacers are just .5 games out with some home court josteling between the the Heat and Raptors.

However, in the NHL, it is far more interesting with a little over a week to play, about 6 games.

In the West, the Avs are equivalent to 2.5 games out, but the exciting part is the seeding fighting. (For those who aren't familiar with NHL playoffs, they reseed the teams after every playoff round, hence the best team is always playing the worst seed left. To me, this makes the most sense over bracketing because the best team deserves the easiest road because they earned it throughout the regular season.)

In addition, the West has all 3 divisions fighting. In the Central, Nashville and Detroit are playing for the top seed in the West, where the loser will probably be #4. In the Pacific, there are my Sharks battling with Stars and Ducks, where the division winner getting the #2 seed and the losers might probably be as low as #7! That's a HUGE drop in positioning!

Over in the East, there are 6 teams fighting to make the final 3 positions, where only 3 points seperate them all, equivalent to 1.5 games. Either Atlanta or Tampa Bay will win Southeast, the other could miss the playoffs entirely! This is the excitement of HOCKEY!

Natsfan74 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Hank said...

Wait, didn't Alabama get their number one choice?

Chris said...

As I posted a few days ago, Florida is becoming the new Duke. For a column that examines one of the reasons for this, not to mention the growing national disgust with Joakim Noah, you may be interested in reading the following:

http://msn.foxsports.com/cbk/story/6612068

I don't mind Horford, Green, or any of the other Gators for that matter. However, Noah, is without a doubt the most annoying player I can remember. The only thing more bothersome, is bandwagon jumping fans like our boy Shanoff. Please, UCLA, I beg of you to end this long national nightmare on Saturday.

Michael said...

Red Wings vs. Ducks was on Vs. last night and provided a great preview of playoff hockey. Final score was 1-0 but was an extremely entertaining game. All nine teams in the West playoff hunt could do some damage in the playoffs.

Natsfan74 said...

OK, I have a non-Florida basketball question: Which team has the best line-up of homegrown talent?

The Cubs will start a line-up with 9 players who came to the major leagues in different organizations 4 out of 5 days this year (assuming Floyd eventually beats out Murton and Prior won't start 1 out of 5 to match Zambrano) and only 3 of those players are even products of trades that the Cubs got for prospects.

For arguments sake, I would consider a trade for a prospect/ young stud (i.e., Aramis Ramirez) as potentially homegrown, but would not do the same for a proven star (Ken Griffey, Jr).

The Braves might be the best team with a line-up that starts more than 50% players from their own farm system (see young prospect rule for Smoltz).

The heroin sheik said...

Natsfan What about the d-rays the entire team is pretty much a AAA club. I think like 80% of the roster is homegrown or guys we got young like Kazmir. Sure it is grapefruit league but the D-rays were 5-0-1 last week and outscored their opponents by 40 runs. If we could sustain that we could make a run for third place. At least we shouldn't be the worst team in the bigs. I'd love to see a team beat those immortal mets.

At least Dan was liking the gators before they won their title. Since all of our juniors have already made up their minds about next season but won't reveal their decisions til after the season. If they win the title I could see them staying around to try for three in a row which would cement them in the all time pantheon of great teams in all sports. Sure we lose humphrey and richard to graduation but with the juniors back we could still be dangerous. Other than Brewer it isn't like they need the money right away. It would be very intriguing but sadly mostly just a pipe dream. IF that happens no way Donovan leaves.

I watched the COT at bristol and it looked like it was all over the track because of how loose they had the cars set up. Sure the drivers dislike the car but I think it looks cool.

The ning are going to make a run to the cup. We have the offense just need to kill the power play and shore up our goaltending.

Hopefully when I move to chicago I will be able to get Direct TV. I didn't see a single MNF game this year but I hear that Jaws was awesome in the first game. I just never really liked MNF and only watched if the Bucs or Cowboys played.

floyd said...

natsfan74-

gimme a break. ALL Nationals fans are "bandwagon fans" (if you want to call it that. hard to jump on the bandwagon for a terrible team, but whatever).

they've been around, what, three seasons? it's not like you've been a fan for years and years.

Natsfan74 said...

Yes, all Nats fans are new fans (minus those Expos holdouts) and are bandwagon fans.

Dan's fandom is particularly disturbing because:
a) he has a penchant for jumping on the bandwagon (see Florida Gators); and
b) he didn't care about the Nats at all, until asked by Deadspin to write their season preview. Even his season preview was a bunch of un-researched jibberish. Noone in DC not named Stan Kasten expects the Nationals to do well this year. But we also don't expect them to be losers of epic proportion.

Kevin said...

The Brewers have a lot of homegrown talent: Prince Fielder, Rickie Weeks, JJ Hardy, Ben Sheets, Cory Hart, Bill Hall. They may not all be stars (yet), but have a lot of young potential and all came up through the Brewer's farm system.

The heroin sheik said...

In light of the NFL's personal conduct policy I was wondering people's worst player ever. The sport does not matter so world class assholes like mike tyson are candidates. Is it Rae carruth or Tank Johnson? The only requirement is that they had to be in a professional sport at the time of their bad conduct. I guess this makes OJ not a possibility even though he is a world class douchebag.

Biebs said...

Tank Johnson had guns... Rae Carruth hired someone to kill his pregnant girlfriend.
I don't think there's a lower ground than Rae Carruth
I'd argue Rae Carruth would be worse than OJ on the personal Conduct scale...

Bo Padgett said...

I don't think you're very capable of speaking objectively about all of this Tubby Smith, Billy Donovan, Florida, Kentucky stuff going on, so why don't you leave it alone, Dan?

GuyInTheCorner said...

Natsfan said...

Noone in DC not named Stan Kasten expects the Nationals to do well this year. But we also don't expect them to be losers of epic proportion.

I'm from DC and what's right below epic?

Natsfan74 said...

I guess right below epic would be massive -- slightly short of record setting levels, but well worse than mediocre or bad.

shpiders said...

Please, Tank Johnson isn't even in the same ballpark as Rae Caruth.

Tank had guns and violated a gun control probation (it wouldn't even be a story if he played for the Bengals or Raiders). Rae hired someone to kill someone else.

Patriots64 said...

"Oh, and you know who else might react negatively to the news that Joe Theismann is out of MNF job? College football fans. Why? Well, according to Joe, ESPN, offered him the Saturday night college football gig along with Brent Musberger. Maybe ESPN could even -- and you'll love this idea -- team him back up with Paul Maguire."

Patriots64 said...

Chris Henry was arrested for driving with a suspended license after failing to use a turn signal in Cincinnati last Wednesday.

Henry was also found to be riding without a seat belt after police pulled over his Escalade. He has a court date set for April 19. Commissioner Roger Goodell is intent on punishing repeat offenders of the law and Henry is all but certain to be suspended for a period of time this season.

Todd said...

The biggest problem for the Nats is that as bad as the present looks, the future isn't that promising either.

In terms of prospects, they have exactly 1 guy in Baseball America's Top 100 prospects, and Collin Balester is ranked #95. And their farm system overall ranks as one of the worst in baseball.

Getting nothing for Soriano hurt, but hopefully they can get some good draft picks from the compensation for him. Still, even those guys would be 2-3 years off seeing any MLB time at best.

Part of the problem is that Jim Bowden's asking price for Soriano and now for Cordero is simply too high. He got a great deal getting Kearns and Lopez, but that might've entailed withholding information about medical records.

Until they start playing in their new stadium, I see a lot of problems with that franchise. After all, at least the Marlins had pieces for a firesale, the Nats don't even have that (as they won't sell Zimmerman nor should they).

Oh yeah, and just to beat a dead horse, Church is having an abysmal Spring last time I checked.

They're bad. 110 wins bad.

Brian in Oxford said...

Anything's better than Bob Davie, though. Maybe even Joe and Paul. I could see Brent doing less kowtowing to Theismann, compared to the slurpfest of Mike Patrick.

verbal97 said...

What about that basketball player from Baylor that killed his teammate? Also, honorable mention for sports nutcase has to go to Tonya Harding. So much so, that it's now a verb...as in the punter from N. Colorado Tonya Harding'd the starting punter for his starting job.

Big D said...

Just came across this story. Basically, the Bears & Redskins are talking about swapping first-round picks, plus the Redskins would get Lance Briggs.

How quickly do you think the Bears would accept that offer? Does Dan Snyder understand that the Bears are completely hamstrung in this situation? That they have to deal Briggs away? And they're willing to give up the #6 overall pick in the draft, drop to #31, and get a disgruntled (albeit very good) linebacker, who they will immediately have to resign to a big contract.

I dunno, sometimes I wonder what the minimum IQ is required to run a professional sports franchise.

kway34 said...

I dunno, sometimes I wonder what the minimum IQ is required to run a professional sports franchise.

More often I'm pretty sure there's a maximum, not a minimum, IQ required to run a sports franchise.

The heroin sheik said...

The thing with someone like Rae carruth is that they did one bad thing, which was totally messed up, while guys like Pacman Jones just keeping doing dumb shit time and time again. How long does it take for him to graduate from instigating a gunfight to shooting someone dead or being killed himself. From what I can recall about Carruth he wasn't necessarily a bad person he just made a really idiotic choice instead of dealing with it like a man. I think someone like pacman has the potential to be the worst of the lot.

Then you have someone like Tom Payne who was sentenced to ife on multiple convictions of rape. This is a pretty interesting site even if you can't fully trust it as fact.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_professional_athletes_who_have_been_convicted_of_crimes

The heroin sheik said...

Oh well guess the link was too long. Just google athletes who have been arrested and look at the wikipedia article listing some of the more prominent athletes to be convicted of felonies. The figure skater might be the creepiest.

Sean said...

Two things...

Thanks to the media swirl about Nats season tickets, I've been constantly refreshing my FedEx package tracking (they have been on a truck in Alexandria since 9:06 AM in case anyone cares).

Also, on the fighting/safety thing... allowing fighting is a safety thing. You have between 8 and 12 guys on the ice (including goalies) all with sticks... fighting provides a disincentive to put your stick in someone's throat/face/crotch, etc... if you had no fighting, you'd have a lot more Sher-Wood surgery. And believe me, having Georges LaRoque and Donald Brashear throw hands is a lot better than some defenseman snapping Crosby's or Ovechkin's ankle with a slash.

shpiders said...

RE: Lance Briggs

First a caveat ... I'm a Bears fan, so take this with a grain of salt:

The Bears are not ham strung with what they are doing for Briggs. Yes, they franchised him and pissed him off. But if another team signs him, the Bears get 2 1st round picks. If he sits out it does hurt Chicago, but they play in the NFC North, so they'll be ok. Besides that, of all the players that have been franchised a lot have complained about it, but none have held out. Oh, and if he does hold out this year - the Bears can franchise him again next year, so they don't lose him if he sits out this year.

That said, I think the Bears should at least get a 1st rounder for him (not swap). That may mean they don't get the 6th pick of the draft - but come on, he was a pro-bowler the last few years.

After the Bears traded Jones and a 2nd round pick for a higher second round pick, they better not lose Briggs that easily too.

rafael said...

Um..Sheikh...when a man hires somebody to kill his girlfriend and unborn child...he is a bad person, and not just someone who 'made a mistake'.

Anywho, I think docking a team draft picks is fine. Hit the problem at the source..teams that draft assholes and general dbags. Is Chris Henry replaceable as a WR? Easily. In the draft? Even more so.
Besides, it would take repeat offenses for a team to lose draft picks, so they have time t oclean house.

DrDoom said...

yes there is a minimum iq required (1)

and to answer earlier posts right now the most despicable i can think of is rae carruth but there is probably someone we are all forgetting.

and i see no reason for donavon to leave unless it is to nba.

Noah. I think everybody who does not like florida hates him. He should not be a top 10 pick he is not good at anything he is decent and somewhat athletic and hustles and yells.

DrDoom said...

the minimum iq used to be 5 but dolan sued on discriminatory grounds.

The heroin sheik said...

OK maybe sating carruth made a mistake is a bit of an understatement but I think y'all get the difference I was trying to make.

Anyone read van gundy's idea of letting all teams compete for the lottery. Sounds good to me.

Johnathan said...

Sean you must be some sort of profit beacuse Georges LaRoque and Donald Brashear did get into a fight tonight with each other

By the way the pens were down 2-0 early in the first period; the coach calls the time-out and now pens are up 4-2 in the third

Sean said...

Sean you must be some sort of profit beacuse Georges LaRoque and Donald Brashear did get into a fight tonight with each other

That's what the big dogs do... hell, check out this from LaRaque: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TCabaJFDuYw&eurl=http%3A%2F%2Fwithleather%2Ecom%2Findex%2Ephtml%3Ft%3DNHL

Matt said...

I've never figured out the high Noah draft momentum either. To me he looks like a Magloire who has an even worse looking shot (how scary is that for an nba team with a lottery pick?) but runs the floor well.

I just don't understand the screaming and chest bumping every time he gets a rebound. He can't shoot so rebounding and blocking is his job on that team (anyone else noticed that they seem to get better when he's in foul trouble and Richards comes in)? I don't scream and celebrate everytime I finish a memo.