Friday, March 04, 2011

03/04 Quickie: Oregon, NFL, Stats

Dateline: Boston, Mass.

I'm in Boston for the Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, an event I spoke at last year and found to be one of the most enjoyable events I've ever been to, full of great ideas and even better people.

That's why this year, even without a speaking gig, I am back to hang out, learn, chat and otherwise soak up the smarts.

Quickish is still going full-throttle -- you don't want to know how the site was updated while I was making the 6-hour ride from NYC to Boston (hint: it's normally 4-ish), but suffice to say that today will be a mix of Quickish updates and judicious commentary on my @danshanoff Twitter feed.

One big Quickish thing that I could really use your help with: Last night, we rolled out a "Share" function that lets you recommend individual Quickish posts (or "tips") via Facebook and Twitter. (Just look for the "share" link on the top right of each post.)

We tested it, but until it's live and a bunch of people use it under lots of different conditions, you never know. So if you see something you like and are interested in sharing it with your Facebook or Twitter folks, please give it a try and -- more than anything -- let me know if it doesn't work the way you want it to, why it didn't and what could be better. Just shoot me an email at dan-[at]-quickish-[dot]-com. (I'll take any of your feedback on any Quickish issue, btw.)

Anyway, huge thanks for that -- readers being able to share Quickish recommendations with their friends has been glaringly missing for the past two months and I can't wait to see if it increases the number of people who hear about (and ultimately visit and enjoy) Quickish.

Thanks again. Now...

*Oregon recruiting "scandal"-ish: I break out the "-ish" suffix because Oregon, on its face, didn't do anything wrong. It paid a scouting service, like basically every other major college football program does.

That these "services" might do more than provide video clips or recommendation lists or put together helpful camps or clinics has long been one of the murkier, seedier underbellies of the sport. Frankly, it's one of the ways business simply gets done.

That doesn't make it right, but it does make it de facto institutionalized. Nothing is going to happen to Oregon with this, but to the extent that "sunlight is the best disinfectant," it feels like a net-positive that it's out in the open as a topic of discussion.

*NFL Labor Deadline (or "Deadline"): The 24-hour extension really doesn't mean anything, except that perhaps... well, perhaps nothing. I either expect more extensions or the NFL players' union will de-certify today. (I still contend that the owners are going to win this and win big, that they know it and that the players kind of know it, too. So anything that disrupts the thesis is welcome, but in general, following the tick-tock of this story has been the lamest "big" story on Quickish in its 2 months.

*Tina Stewart Murdered: What a tragedy at Middle Tennessee State. The roommate allegedly did it? It's awful. Thoughts are with her family, friends and the MTSU community.

*Magic shock Heat: It is in the best interests of basketball fans that the Magic become a viable playoff competitor in the East to the Celtics, Heat and Bulls. What a semifinals that will be. (And what amazing schadenfreude to see the Heat lose after being up 20-something.)

*Nuggets beat the Jazz: I know the Jazz aren't the same team as two weeks ago, but the Nuggets aren't either -- they are better. How many wins will it take for "The Carmelo Theory" to supplant "The Ewing Theory?"

*Kings relocation to Anaheim an all-but-done-deal? I feel very badly for Kings fans, who are even more die-hard than Sonics fans (no offense, Seattle friends -- at least you've got the Seahawks and Mariners and Huskies).

*College hoops: So much for St. John's' momentum. Reminder that no matter who the Johnnies have beaten this season, pick in late March at your own risk.

*Championship Week: Title games tomorrow in the Big South (4 p.m. ET), Atlantic Sun (6 p.m.) and Ohio Valley (8 p.m.) -- one-bid leagues where you really appreciate how much the players and students appreciate the ticket to go dancing. Always an annual treat.

Enjoy the day. Lots going on at Quickish. Please stop by.

-- D.S.

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