Today's Names to Know: Patriots, Giants, Titans, Browns, Vikings, Redskins, College Bowl Mania, Rich Rodriguez, Holiday Bowl, Bill Parcells, Amare Stoudemire, Kevin Garnett, Bobby Frasor, Dayton Flyers, More!
Patriots 19-0 Watch: 16-0 happens on Saturday night, the first time in NFL history a team will unbeaten in a 16-game season. That is, unless the Giants pull off a miracle.
My feeling is this: This game is WAY bigger than any playoff game the Giants might play. (Face it: The Giants aren't winning the NFC, let alone the Super Bowl.) Beating the Patriots tomorrow night ensures football immortality -- just ask the '85 Dolphins.
I just don't understand why the Giants aren't playing this game as if it IS their Super Bowl. It would be nice if they recognized that winning this is actually bigger than winning in the playoffs. It doesn't happen often, but it's the case this time.
I feel so obsessed about this point that I created a separate stand-alone post, directly beneath this one – or found through this link, including a guest appearance by uber-Giants fan Roger Director, author of the new book "I Dream In Blue."
More NFL This Weekend: I'm not even going to bother with making picks; not when all but four teams will be basically tanking -- playing not to get hurt or playing for draft position. Here are the four teams vying for a relatively meaningless 6th seed in the playoffs (neither is the 6-seed Super Bowl champ Steelers, don't kid yourself):
AFC: Titans vs. Browns. How can you not root for the Browns? (The entire AFC playoff bracket – the entire NFL playoff bracket – is a farce. No, Colts fans, your team isn't beating the Pats this year. "AFC runner-up" will actually be meaningful.)
NFC: Vikings vs. Redskins. How can you not root for the Redskins? (As much as you'd like to see Adrian Peterson in the playoffs – and make my preseason pick of the Vikings as a playoff team one of my finest predictions of 2007 – you can't deny the Sean Taylor Factor.)
Other than that, it will be interesting to see how the draft order shakes out.
Weird plays aside, the win gives
College Bowl Mania!: Weekend Edition
Champs Sports: BC vs. Michigan St. Expect points.
Meineke Car Care: UConn vs. Wake. Underdog Bowl!
Alamo: Penn St vs.
More NFL: Bill Parcells checks out Dolphins and attends his first practice, planning to "put a structure in place." No pressure or anything, though. Your future with the team is only riding on it.
NBA: Kevin Garnett is the leading vote-getter in All-Star balloting, ahead of last year's leader, LeBron. Nice to see fans recognizing Dwight Howard as worthy of starting; Tracy McGrady's inclusion, at the moment, as a starter in the West achieves the opposite effect.
Amare Stoudemire vs. Chris Kaman: In one of the most highly anticipated matchups of big men of the season, Amare (30 pts, 15 reb) got the best of Kaman (9 pts, 9 reb).
CBB: UNC beats
CBB Weekend Preview: The Game of the Weekend is Pitt at
Mid-Major Madness tonight:
I will be posting all weekend and definitely on Monday, if you plan to drop by. If you won't be stopping by until after January 1, happy new year to you.
Save the Date if you live in NYC: Next Thursday, January 3. I will make my inglorious return to the podium for the Varsity Letters Reading Series. I am the opening act for Will Leitch, and the outstanding Dave Zirin is also in the lineup. Truly something not to be missed. I won't spoil what I'm reading, but I will say that it is based on work done on the blog and I am considering a "performance-art" component. Details: Thursday 1/3, Happy Ending, 302 Broome St. 8 p.m. FREE.