Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Wednesday 09/26 A.M. Quickie:
Vick (Ugh), Grossman, Fielder, Wirtz, More

Today's Names to Know: Michael Vick (ugh: still?), DeAngelo Hall, Deuce McAllister, Rex Grossman, Barry Bonds, Prince Fielder, Mike Gundy, Carl Edwards, Bill Wirtz and More.

Michael Vick indicted (again), cont'd: (Why do I feel like I should apologize for leading with Vick? Feel free to skip right ahead.) So grand jurors didn't stick Vick with an indictment on the killing of dogs, which could have brought 40 years of jail time. Apparently, the local DA Poindexter completely screwed up the process. This was a lay-up: Vick had already confessed to killing dogs! Yet somehow the jury didn't come back with any indictments about that. Vick could still do another 10 years, which ain't puppy dogs and ice cream. (What: Hits too close to home?)

DeAngelo Hall's teammate beat-down: There's no justice like the kind dispensed by teammates, behind closed doors. This was no dorky "Kangaroo Court" or standard hazing; that's apparently the beat-down Hall got for being such a complete dolt both on the field and off of it during Sunday's meltdown.

Deuce McAllister is out for the season: As mentioned yesterday, this means that it's put-up-or-shut-up time for Reggie Bush and his legion of fanboys. Is he an every-down running back in the NFL? I suspect not. And how much will increased carries impact his ability to do things as a receiver? Bush has yet to prove he's the next coming of Marshall Faulk.

Rex Grossman to be benched by the Bears: The QB affectionately known around the blogosphere as the "Sex Cannon" (h/t: KSK) will now become the league's most virile backup. I'm just not sure how much Brian Griese will change things. However, I'm willing to trust the market: What do Griese's "Added" percentages look like in the fantasy leagues? Personally, I remain a fan of Grossman's, going back to college – he was the QB at Florida during my first season of Gators fandom.*

(* - Standard disclosure: Utterly shameless and nominally humiliating bandwagon Florida fandom based on the girl I was dating at the time who later became my wife.)

Barry Bonds' final home game in San Francisco tonight: Will he even play? It would be a shame if he didn't. Fans in San Francisco have gotten a lot out of being able to root for him, but Barry has received even more: A devoted and loyal fan base, when the rest of the country HATED him.

MLB Playoff Chase: Rockies win 9th straight. They remain tied with the Phillies at 1 GB the Padres for the Wild Card (3 GB the D'backs for the division title). But Colorado is emerging as the most likeable (and rootable) team in this playoff chase, for those of us without a team involved in an NL race.

(If I had my preference, I'd like to see the Cubs win the NL Central, the Phillies win the NL East, the D'backs win the NL West – because they're so freakish, see link below – and the Rockies win the Wild Card. The Mets simply don't feel like they've earned it this year.)

Meanwhile: Mets lose, but Phillies lose, too. The Cubs lost, and the Brewers won – Chicago leads that division by 2. The D'backs' lead over the Padres is 2 after losing (SDP won).

MLB Stud: Prince Fielder, who hit 2 HR and at 23 became the youngest player in MLB history to hit 50 home runs. I don't think this should be understated: He's one of baseball's true phenoms – I mean, just look at his body – and has the chance to be a Face of Baseball.

MLB Must-Read: Great WashPost article about the how the D'backs have defied the Pythagorean theory about runs scored relating to expected winning percentage.

MLB Hiring: Are Pirates fans excited about the team hiring Neal Huntington as GM?

Upon further reflection, Milton Bradley's season-ending injury is quite possibly the most effed-up on-field-ish injury I have ever heard of. Not only was he hurt being held back by his coach during a tirade on an ump, but apparently the ump went rhetorically batshit crazy on Bradley to incite him.

Jenni Carlson vs. Mike Gundy, Cont'd: He wants to put his YouTube moment behind him; she wants to know where the errors were in her column. I think Gundy was a moron to blitz Carlson like that. It had to have been intentional and premeditated; in the age of YouTube, only a moron would do something like that not understanding the consequences. (It doesn't help that I suspect his tirade was based in part on misogyny, not entirely on a dislike of sports media.) Now, Gundy is forever best-known as the college coach who freaked out; unfortunately for Carlson, when you're a top Google search for the day, she will forever be best-known as his target.

Kudos to reader Jason H., who called me on ripping AP voters for having Louisville over Kentucky two weeks ago, even after Kentucky beat Louisville, then myself having Penn State ranked ahead of Michigan. As I mentioned to him after his quasi-taunting email (which I welcomed), that theory only holds up in the first 2-3 weeks of the season. Then you get into too many situations where underdogs beat better teams, screwing up the whole transitive-property theory of ranking.

(Also: Settle another email question I had about my BlogPoll rankings – who should be ranked higher this week: Ohio State or Cal? After Cal's huge game this weekend at Oregon, the Bears will either be a Top 5 team with a win, or replaced in the Top 10 by Oregon with a loss.)

Notre Dame SuckWatch (TM): Quote from Nebraska linebacker Corey McKeon on the team's lack of support following the close win over Ball State. "We're 3-1 and people are looking at it like we haven't won. They're looking at us like Notre Dame, like we're 0-4." (via USA Today)

NASCAR Cheatin': Carl Edwards drops from 3rd to 6th in the Nextel Cup standings, both because of -- and despite -- winning in Dover last weekend. That's because he was docked 25 points for cheating. Now: Imagine in any other sport a title contender – in the playoffs – cheating after a huge win, and everyone kind of going "oh," then returning to business as usual, because, I would presume, everyone cheats. This is NASCAR, which makes Bill Belichick look like a rank amateur.

NHL: Bill Wirtz, longtime owner of the Blackhawks, is dead at 77. Condolences to his family, friends and Blackhawks fans. The team may have been frustrating to its fans in the last few seasons, but that's not the point today.

-- D.S.

67 comments:

Sparty said...

so if someone else wins the home run crown next year or the MVP award, say it's Chris Young(high unlikely), will they be a Face of Baseball candidate too? last year you said it was Ryan Howard, are yo off that bandwagon? all the guy has done is followed it up with 40+ HRs and still has his team fighting for the playoffs.

Sparty said...

does this mean the blackouts are lifted in chicago? (of course not sure if that is still the case for blackhawk games)

Mike said...

The theory of ranking college football teams only works when its convenient for you. When someone else calls you on your inconsistencies, suddenly the rules have changed. The rest of the time it's okay for you to be a self righteous prick and mock other people for their rankings.

Matt said...

I bet Wirtz' funeral will be blacked out.

As a hockey fan: Good. Riddance.

But still, as a person, RIP.

The man had a wife and five kids, so there's at least 6 people in this world who are going to miss Dollar Bill.

Paul Rinkes said...

I worked for a good friend of Wirtz's in Chicago. It was very odd, to hear/read/believe all the people who honestly hated Wirtz for ruining what should have been a love affair between the Hawks and Chicago ... and then to hear this man I really admired tell me all these good stories about Wirtz the human being.

RIP. Now, televise the damn games.

RevScottDeMangeMD said...

I am stunned that Shanoff didn't meantion Dancing with the Stars. I watched last night to see how bad Cuban would be (he was horrible) and how bad Mayweather woudl be (he was ok).

And to all you ladies out there, I promise I'm a heterosexual male.

Mark said...

Ha, well put, Mike!

Matt T said...

The Rockies and Braves are the two hottest teams in baseball right now. If they both keep winning, that opens the door for the Rockies, as Atlanta still has 2 more against the Phils with Smoltz and Hudson going in those games.

Sparty said...

damn mike. a lil harsh don't you think. I mean I think each of us has been tough on Dan the last few months, but to resort to calling him names like that is a little uncalled for. granted his logic is messed up at times, but crap man settle down.

Mr. Ed said...

How come I'm seeing so many columns around the sports world today saying what a mistake Lovie Smith is making for benching Grossman, that he's not showing confidence in his QB, etc.? Two days ago the battle cry was, "Lovie is an idiot for sticking with Bad Rex"....

Show me one other quarterback in the NFL with the "Good (insert name here)/Bad (insert name here)" nicknames. Even Michaels and Madden were using Good Rex/Bad Rex during Sunday night's game. These QB's don't get paid to be Good/Bad... they get paid to be Good. Benching Grossman is the right thing to do, and any coach that thinks otherwise can go back to the amateur ranks and worry about his kids' feelings.

Natsfan74 said...

Pre-Season rankings have so little merit that they are a joke and shouldn't be published. All they do is build false momentum which voters are then unlikely to change as long as the team keeps winning (USC #1 anyone?). So, when a team proves in weeks 1-3 that it didn't deserve to be ranked that high, it's easy to drop them far down the polls.

By the 3rd or 4th week, there is a body of evidence that supports a team's ranking more so than a single game. When UCLA beat USC last year, no one said UCLA was a better team, just that they were better on one day. I am sure that no sports media ranked UCLA higher than USC in the next poll. So, what Dan is saying is absolutely correct. Michigan beat Penn State, but their body of work thus far this season does not prove them to be the "better" team. Upsets happen, but that does not mean we should immediately rank the underdog higher just because they pulled one out. But, week 1 upsets are more telling because, without any other body of work, they show that the pre-season projections -- based solely off of talent without merit -- are not necessarily correct. I would have dropped Michigan from the top 25 after one loss. But, if that App State loss came to a 4-0 Michigan team, it would have been a lot harder to drop them 20+ places for a single loss.

rafael said...

Hm. Wirtz lived a full life. Good for him.


And now possibly good for Blackhawk fans.

verbal97 said...

No mention that Bonds' homerun ball will be branded with an asterisk and sent to Cooperstown?

verbal97 said...

Also, an honest hypothetical question. Let's say a highly regarded, currently undefeated team were to lose this weekend (e.g., Florida losing to Auburn), would a team that's undefeated from the most underrated BCS conference to ranked above them (BC and/or Clemson), or would a 1-loss team (like my example, Florida) would still be ahead. I ask because invariably a 1 loss team will at some point be ranked higher than an undefeated and would like to know when that would be.

John said...

What's the Nextel Cup?

/Northeast sportsfan

Sparty said...

we all know rutgers is getting the shaft this year.

John said...

@Natsfan74: +1

CMFost said...

here is a stat that should decide who is the AL Cy Young Winner:

How did the leaders for the American League Cy Young do after a loss (AL) & against projected playoff teams:

Pitcher…….AL / Playoff teams
Wang………..8-2 / 6-3
Sabathia…..8-3 / 3-1
Carmona……8-4 / 1-1
Beckett……10-2 / 5-1

CycleDan said...

As someone who has never watched a NASCAR race, I still have to disagree with your take. Something on the car was out of spec 1/2" that probably had nothing at all to do with whether he won or not. Doesn't sound like cheating to me. They probably set some height exactly at the limit and a couple of hours at 200mph or however fast they go, something settled. Big deal.

Natsfan74 said...

As for the OSU vs. Cal rankings, I think Ohio State is slightly better than Cal, but it is a toss-up. Cal's signature win to this point is against Tennessee. It was a home game, against a team that went on to lose to Florida by almost 40 points. Ohio State's signature win to this point is against Washington, on the road.

Ohio State has a better defense, a better running game, and very talented receivers. Cal's QB might be slightly better, and they have good receivers and an excellent return game. Based on that body of work (which the Oregon game will significantly add to with a win), at this point I would have tOSU ahead. But, the Oregon game could significantly alter that, depending on performance.

CMFost said...

Verbal the undefeated but no name team should be ranked higher but we all know how the pollsters work, they look at team name then conference then record before voting instead looking at the records of the teams. Personally you should take all the undefeated teams that play in major conferences and rank them and then if you do not have 25 teams then start with the 1 loss teams. A one loss team in a major conference should never be ranked ahead of a undefeated team in a major conference

CycleDan said...

Rugby World Cup

The US has two games left in the round robin stage and are 0-3. They won't beat powerhouse South Africa so today is their last hope for a win.

I always wondered what would happen if it became an Olympic sport again (it was way back about 100 years ago) and the US sent its top football players to play after learning the game for a month or two. They couldn't beat the top teams most likely based upon skill and experience. However wouldn't it be fun to see a back line made up of the top RBs in the NFL?

chipp said...

Washington is a "signature" win?!

Yeah!!

John said...

@CMFost: That's nice in theory, but irrational in practice. Look at the current rankings: according to your calculation, Cincy should be ranked ahead of Penn St./ Arizona St. ahead of Georgia. Not to complicate matters, but conference strength and the strength of schedule should factor in dramatically ("the body of work," as a past comment has alluded to).

Boomhauertjs said...

How much run support did Beckett get in those games? CC should win. He's near the top in every pitching category, except for run support.

TF said...

Cycle,

My dad played college rugby after playing tailback in high school. He claims it's a much different sport...especially since he played hooker.

I do think that if Rugby wasn't the 15th-20th most popular sport in the US we'd rule the world.

The heroin sheik said...

Dan never apologize for being a Gator fan no matter how weak your reasons for rooting for us. However as long as you have liked the Gators you have been fair when we deserved it and an asskick when we deserved it which is almost always.

No mention of the Rays? We come back from like 6 down and win in the tenth. That game was epic if you are a Ray fan. My brother's were all at the game with most of my friends and they kept calling me telling me how great it was. Both teams hit a Denny's breakfast. You got to give props to the Rays. I think almost every last place team won last night. Thats playing the role of giant killer.

chitown italian said...

Good for Fielder. He seems to play hard every day. He seems to play the game the right way which I thoroughly enjoy seeing these days. There is enough wife/girlfriend beatings, enough throwing bats at umpires, enough illegal activity in the sports world so when a young player stays out of trouble and does well on the field you have to appreciate that.

Agreed about Wirtz, RIP as an individual but maybe now the team will get back to being good and finally make the playoffs.

As for Sexy Rexy, he is bad. Really, really bad. Has any UF QB been good in the NFL? Spurrier - Bad; Wuerrful - Bad; Palmer - Bad; GROSSman - Bad. Anyone? Anyone? But hey, at least the Bears still have Chris Leak as a fall back.

That is enough Michael Vick already. He's about to be someones prison bitch. Don't drop the soap Mike.

chitown italian said...

How about the NL races this year? Only five games left and all three division leaders have a magic number of four.

You gotta love this stuff.

Generik420 said...

As a longtime Red Wings fan.. I will shed no tears at the passing of Wirtz... that may not make sense being a fan of the rival team.. but the most memorable hockey I fondly remember is some of the playoff battles between the Wings and Hawks in the early 90's. Wirtz ran that team into the ground, made it so I couldn't even watch games on Center Ice even though I live in Indianapolis 3 HOURS from Chicago.

As to the Nascar thing, I heard the penalty was not for cheating but because a part broke on the car which dropped it out of spec. I specifically heard that they said it appeared there was no evidence of intentional tampering, but because of the malfunction he recieved a competitive advantage and thus the penalty. I won't defend Nascar too much.. but lets be honest here.. they have dropped the hammer on a ton of teams this year. Multiple 100 point penalties and multiple race suspensions for crew chiefs. In fact, one could maybe argue that the penalty Dale Jr. took early on may have been the difference between him making the chase or not.

Sparty said...

um, anyway

Generik420 said...

Forgot to ask.. why is there nobody suggesting that Kyle Orton be given a chance in Chicago? I know he didn't light the world on fire in 2005, but he didn't LOSE games for the team. And now he has had a full year to develop and learn on the sidelines. He had epic numbers at Purdue, ranking with the likes of Brees. I just can't believe that the Bears wouldn't want to find out if he could be the right choice and potentially even be the future of the QB position.

John said...

@Boomhauertjs: "How much run support did Beckett get in those games?"

Answer: Not much.

The Sox support of Beckett has been sporadic at best, particularly in the past few months to the point that he even got in a semi-flap with a reporter that kept belaboring the point. Particularly in July, I remember him dropping a string of 2-1, 3-2 games.

Beckett's W/L's are unparalleled (without the aid of extensive offense) and he's been clutch v. the AL's best. Has to be considered the Cy front runner.

John said...

@ Blue: wtf

Geoff said...

Link to the article instead of pasting the whole thing. That is obnoxious.

Mr. Ed said...

@ Blue -

I'm pretty sure that most of the people who post on here also have the ability to go to the WWL and read TMQ if they want to. Refer to it if you like, but quit posting the whole dadgum column here every week.

Can SOMEBODY say "Amen"???

hansenm said...

@ mr. ed: AMEN

nooch said...

sorry...i just don't buy that the tapes are destroyed. I think they just said that to stop the talk, and have them deep in some safe somewhere where only goodell knows the combination.

Management said...

hey everyone, i just stumbled onto this TMQ guy on espn, he is pretty cool.

chitown italian said...

I like Orton. He did a hell of a job when the Sex Dragon broke his finger nail and was out for the first 10/12 games.

I just think that Griese is a good QB. Given the chance I think he can be a leader for that offense.

Either way, the McCaskey's are terrible owners. I have never cared for the way they ran the team. I am glad to see they finally came to their senses and put Lovie under contract.

Jonathan said...

Shocking that the way cmfost thinks they should determine the cy young winner has Beckett comming out on top!

blue said...

sorry about that guys...i'm trying to get the links to work for you

Mark said...

Can Shanoff ban these douchebags posting entire TMQ articles? WTF

verbal97 said...

That's ridiculous...Blogger should have a post limit like Fox does.

Anyway, I don't see how Beckett doesn't win the Cy Young, and that's coming from a Yankee fan.

Also, Rutgers was on the verge of getting screwed last year (then they lost and it didn't matter). I can envision a scenario where BC finally has a great season and gets screwed. Not that it matters, I don't acknowledge "national champions" in the "bowl subdivision" anyway.

blue said...

damn that didn't work either....seriously i'm trying to get it right

blue said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
pv845 said...

AMEN!

I think we all know about the WWL and TMQ. We don't need to have the entire post.

Management said...

has anyone heard of the MMQB?

there is a MMQB and TMQB, but no Wednesday morning QB, isn't that wierd?

Management said...

who is this blue guy? how did he find out about TMQ before me?

blue said...

there should be a sunday afternoon quarterback...or even sunday morning

Management said...

@verbal

i am glad to hear that you do not acknowledge national champions in the bowl subdivision. i feel the same way.

we should get together for coffee.

blue said...

maybe sunday evening?

Management said...

blue, your annoyingly long posts aside, you raise a good point about sunday morning QB.

we should get a coffee together and discuss.

Management said...

sunday evening would be good too.

it is timely.

blue said...

can we get verbal and mr. ed to come to coffee too?

marcomarco said...

looks like dan must've pissed off Deadspin again. Management and blue are playing the spam game

pv845 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Management said...

what is deadspin?

i am new to the interweb. i found this blog by typing in "lemmings, sports, plowing" into google.com.

Management said...

@ blue


all are welcome for coffee. in my country it is custom to have an open invitation.

blue said...

dan is just jealous of deadspin. he'd bend over for Will Leitch if will swung that way.

Management said...

blogging is fun, but i would like to know what this deadspin is. is it another blog? is it better?

nikbask said...

As far as the Gundy situation goes, I'm pretty sure he said something about wishing he had written what he wanted to say down, so that would mean he had planned to say something. I personally like that he stood up for his kid, even a kid he benched. If the story had inaccuracies, then it's just like everything else the media writes. They want to sell papers, he helped them and her do just that. She should be able to take it and he should be able to take it, I'm just tired of hearing about it.

Management said...

i typed deadspin into the google.

Management said...

i like this place better. deadspin doesn't seem to be the coffee type.

pv845 said...

Good to see more of the morons are showing up.

I think Gundy's rant was a lot of show for his team. They started out the season as some people's favorite's for the B12 South and have not done very well. Something like this is an easy way for the team to move onto something else and not think about the past games.

Sparty said...

yeah, i'm another yank fan, Beckett is the Cy Young

CMFost said...

I am not saying that should be the only determining factors in the Cy Young Race but it is one of them.