Wednesday, July 28, 2010

07/28 Quickie: T.O., Yao, Stras, Pac-12

Number of weeks until fans are sick of Terrell Owens and Chad Ochocinco playing "can you top this?" Actually, if you enjoy flamboyant behavior, this is incredible news.

Foreshadowing: Stephen Strasburg was scratched from his start last night because of shoulder inflammation. Already? So not good.

Yao will retire from the NBA if his foot injury doesn't totally heal: The Rockets have done admirably well without him, but it would be a Top 3 all-time "What if...?"

Pac-10 becomes "Pac-12": Larry Scott might be getting mocked, but I really like the Pac's effort to make its brand more national and powerful.

The league has been a weak sister for years -- despite USC's success -- and the fact is that East Coast Bias exists in the media and with fans, and unless you're on the radar back East (or even in the Midwest), you're at a disadvantage: With TV deals, with sponsors, with recruiting.

The idea seems lame-brained... right up until the league actually gets more exposure and improves all those metrics. Scott's willingness to do whatever is a refreshing change for that league. I wonder if, a few years ago, Scott would have openly supported a playoff?

Cliff Lee is awesome: 13 Ks in 9 innings. But it still wasn't enough to get the W -- the Rangers needed Nelson Cruz to hit a game-winning HR in the 10th. They are just having one of "those" years.

MLB makes a smart move: They move the start of the 2011 schedule up and ensure the regular season ends before the start of October, which means that the season -- including the World Series -- will be done before the calendar flips to November. (Baseball nudging into November was greeted with an opposite feeling to the NFL extending into February.)

BCS 2004: Leave it to the BCS to do precisely the wrong thing when it comes to USC. If the NCAA sanctions stand, the BCS will vacate USC's 2004 national title -- there is no champ that year; in the BCS' words, it's like the game was never played.

That would be rather than calling an audible to the group's rules (like they would ever have a rule on the books about a BCS member being declared ineligible) and giving the national title to runner-up Auburn, which never even had a chance to beat USC (which it might have).

If, in today's college football landscape, you find it absurd that an unbeaten SEC champ wouldn't get a direct shot at the national championship, get ready for more: I can totally see the SEC champ having one loss and getting shut out of the NCG by two unbeatens from lesser leagues.

Diego Maradona was fired as Argentina's national soccer coach: We all saw this coming, as soon as ARG got humiliatingly booted. But he will always have the adulation of the group stage.

"Don't talk to Chris Paul": That's basically what the NBA told teams. They don't want a redux of the LeBron debacle, but it has already been set into motion.

Teams don't need to talk with CP3 anyway; they merely need to make a successful trade offer to his GM. I see the Hornets holding on to Paul until his contract year, then trading him before he can bolt leaving them with nothing.

Speaking of leagues telling teams, I missed the story yesterday about the NFL putting up posters in locker rooms warning players about taking concussions seriously, because -- y'know -- playing football causes concussions.

(a) What about non-concussion head injuries, the ones that seem to have an equally debilitating effect on players over time, and

(b) What about getting the posters not just into high school football locker rooms, but into the hands of parents who would make the choice to let their kids get their brains rattled?

Tim Tebow gets another endorsement deal: It's with Jockey, which has a couple of implications. (1) That's a big endorsement. (2) He goes head-to-head with Michael Jordan, who is the lead endorser for Hanes. (3) He picks up the brand's legacy that goes back to Jim Palmer.

Brett Favre still unsure: YOU DON'T SAY. He's going to come back. He doesn't want to deal with training camp. Why doesn't he just say that?

Oh, yikes: Huston Street.

-- D.S.

1 comment:

Steve Sprague said...

Are we supposed to be surprised that you think a one-loss SEC team would lose out on the NCG to two unbeatens? This is obvious. You can't argue that the CFB season is one big playoff and then bypass an unbeaten for a one-loss team from the most hyped league. Yes, the SEC does extremely well in NCG's (that's putting it mildly), but don't forget that the second best teams are beaten plenty of times as well. Georgia losing to WVU, Florida losing to UM (the same year that App State beat UM) and Wisconsin smoking Georgia in the Citrus the same year there was all the talk of how much better the SEC was than the Big 10 (2006).

So, I'm sorry, but you didn't blow my mind.