Monthly Archives: March 2013

Bruce Pearl on ESPN?

Just a short thought today, I was watching Women’s Tournament coverage and who did I see pop on the TV? Bruce Pearl. It appear that in the US we have a double standard when it comes to not following the rules.

Bruce was suspended and hit the the “Show Cause” clause attached to his name which is equivalent to fraud in the criminal world. In the criminal world, you get prison time for fraud (AKA cheating), but in the NCAA world, you just get a job at ESPN (and he is probably making more money).

It is truly sad that no matter what Pearl does short of a felony, someone is gong to pay him and he is going to have a job.

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Filed under Basketball, Other

Wisconsin Basketball End of Season Wrapup

Another year, another season of Badger basketball is in the the books with a loss Friday Ole Miss. The loss to the Rebels was due the same reason that plagued the Badgers this season in most all other losses, long painful scoreless droughts.

You can also see when these droughts are coming, there were some key tips to look for that started the droughts:

  1. We stop throwing the ball inside
  2. We just pass around the perimeter
  3. We only fire up 3-pointers
  4. Ryan Evans starts shoot whenever hes not open

This season was not all bad with two victories over Indiana and Michigan along with a victory over Ohio State. In those game was were able to do the the following:

  1. We throw the ball inside, even if we do not shoot it
  2. Good Defense
  3. Good Rebounding
  4. Ryan Evan does not shoot the ball
  5. Sam Decker plays

I saw people writing that “Bo must go!” after the way this season went and how the offense functioned. I really wonder if these people know how well they really have it with Bo Ryan as a coach. Bo has got the Badgers to the Tournament for the past 12 seasons compared to 7 times in the 103 seasons prior to Bo.

In the end somebody has to win the games and somebody has to lose the games, there is only 1 winner out of 347 Division 1 teams. You never know what you are going to get with a different coach, we might end up like Chelsea. Bo has been able to finish in the top 4 in the Big Ten every season, even this season with a less than stellar senior class plus the issues mentioned above.

This year was a difficult year for the Badgers, but Bo was able to put together a good 20+ win, so its time to give Bo a break since all this guy does is win.

“Bo Must Stay!”

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Filed under Basketball

The NFL takes one step closer to more confusion

The NFL, the game that relates that relates to more people in America than any other sport has taken a minor step back during the annual meeting this year in Phoenix, AZ. A series of rules were passed to “enhance” the safety and the game overall. A listing can be found here.

These are my thoughts are the rule changes:

  1. Illegal challenges – Of all the rules, this is the only one I agree with changing. The was no reason to no right the wrong in the play no matter how stupid the head coach can be from time to time. If this rule would not have changed, I would have wondered if Bud Selig and his take 10 years to make a rule easy rule change crew was running the show.
  2. No overloading on XP and FG’s – The game of football is a rough game, but changing rules like this is watering down the game and stop creativity. This is just another one of Roger Goodell’s don’t let the players sue the league 30 years from now policy rule changes.
  3. Tuck Rule – This rule had existed for years upon years without it causing any trouble, but one snowy day in New England changed that in the most replayed example of this rule. Anytime any play even came close to the tuck rule, we saw a replay of Tom Brady, whenever Tom Brady played on TV we saw the reply, whenever there was a game played in snow we saw a replay. Only one of two things was going to happen to stop everybody from talking about the tuck rule, one… Delete the tuck rule or two… Send Tom Brady off to an unnamed remote island in the Pacific and strike his name from all records in a Moses in the Ten Commandments style kind of banishment.
  4. Allowing 40’s range for Backs and Tight Ends – And why is this an important rule change? Why doesn’t football just say that all offensive linemen are in a certain number range and everybody else is eligible? End of problem.
  5. Peel Back Blocks – Please see point #2
  6. No leading with Crown of Helmet – Why do we play with helmets? What is the point anymore? You can not touch anybody in the helmet, you can not have helmet to helmet hits from the defender and now running backs can not lead outside the magic 3 yard box. So why do we play with helmets? If everybody plays within the rules, you should not need helmets

To me, these additional rules/changes are another step towards a more complex, more NBA rule like structure. The NFL game is no longer a game that anybody can just start watching and understand. The game is filled with all these complex exceptions that make the game hard to watch and even harder for officials to officiate.  All you need is the teams to pass a rule allowing a mid-level salary cap exception and we can start calling this the NB&FLA(National Basketball and Football League Association).

With more complexity, you create the potential to drive away fans or future fans. That is what you have with the NFL, the rules have been watered down and people want to the game to be exciting but not watered down. I personally think this could be the opportunity for Soccer to breakout in America. The game is simple (minus offsides) to understand, no goofy rules, and the players are not actively suing the league.

Whatever comes of the rule changes this year, the fans will continue to show in the short term, but too many rules too soon just might de-throne the game and vilify whoever is driving the bus for going off the cliff.

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Filed under Football

Gomez deal has this person concerned

It was announced recently that Carlos Gomez signed a 3 year, $24 million extension with the Brewers through 2016. All I have to say is that the Brewers and other MLB teams never learn when giving out large contracts.

Like Bill Hall before him, Gomez has received a large extension for the future years for a better than usual year, I do not say all-star year because the numbers he had last year were only good numbers for him. He also has the tendency to end up on the DL more than I would like for someone who is getting $8 million a year. If he is even better this year, he will want even more money, if he is off, teams end up eating the contract, giving this kind of extension in this era is pointless, the teams are generally get burned.

It is funny that the Brewers have not learned from the Bill Hall deal who never lived out his deal with the Brewers. Gomez can be streaky at times, he can focus on the long ball too much while I would use the great speed he does possess. Only time will tell if the Brewers did the right thing and I sure this is not the first posting about this deal and it will not be the last.

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Filed under Baseball

Flacco should get a raise, but how much?

Just a short thought today about the Flacco contact situation. Flacco received a ~$20 million a year deal to make him the highest/top paid Quarterback right now, but it begs the question in my head, is he really worth it?

Now I understand that he did just lead his team to Super Bowl victory, but does he really deserve top flight money just due to a hot run in the playoffs? Everybody these days thinks that if a player is on the championship winning team that he automatically should be the top paid player. The passing game this year was not the best in the NFL. The Flacco led passing game was mid-pack in all passing stats, but yet he should be paid better than a Rodgers, Brees, or Brady?

It is time now to reel in the insanity, and pay Flacco what he is really worth, as a high mid-pack QB which only should be around 10-12 million a season, maybe 14 with incentives. Not everybody should get what they want, even in success. NFL players are one play away from injury, a bad play or the bench, don’t let the high of the Super Bowl cloud against reasonable judgment.

I know the current deal with Flacco is a done deal, but I hope that reasonable judgement will finally kick in just like with the rookie contracts issue and teams will wait until they come off the cloud and make sound choices on how to spend their money.

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Filed under Football

Baseball Pitchers, how much do they really pitch

With baseball spring training in full swing and the games finally being played, it is the annual start of baseball announcers starting talking about how managers should not overwork their pitchers because you will need them later. We will hear announcers state that there is no reason to go in the 7th inning with only 80 pitches, no reason to get the extra batter out, no reason to keep moving. This is what I hear through-out the year, during…

  • Spring Training – “You don’t want overwork your pitchers before the games that count”
  • April/May – “It is still early in the season, you don’t want to overwork players that you will need summer, plus not all your pitchers are in full swing”
  • June/July – “Don’t let your pitchers pitch too longer, since you will need them in the stretch run”
  • August/September – “Don’t overwork the pitchers now because you might need them for the playoffs”

While I do agree that in spring training pitchers should not have to over do it since the games really do not count, the spring training games should be preparing yourself to extended innings for the regular season. I mean if you can not use your pitchers for extended times during each month for the reasons stated above, then when can you? Not everybody makes the playoffs.

My other concern is the uncounted innings that occur on pitching arms today that do not count in the offical stats, do contribute to shorting pitching appearances and causing the less inning/more injuries. It seems that pitchers are pitching more “off the books” with side sessions, simulated games, off season work outs, rehab games and fall/winter leagues it seems that pitchers never seem to have time off to truly rest their arms. I’m sure if you took all the above into account of the total innings pitched, more starting pitchers pitch more than 300 innings a season.

I think the advent of the 5 man pitching rotation has contributed to the the above issues. While the 5 many rotation does allow more time to rest, it give the pitcher more time to throw “undocumented” innings pitched, more time for injury.

Now I don’t have 100% proof that what I’m saying in the above two paragraphs is what is really occurring, just my opinion, but if baseball keeps going with starting pitchers pitching as few innings as they do, then we can no longer call them starters, can we? We will need to start calling the starting pitcher the “first 3 inning thrower”, followed by the “2 inning middle starter”.

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Filed under Baseball