Category Archives: Other

Battlefield 1 Review

So I have been playing Battlefield 1 now for about 24 hours for both Campaign and Multiplayer. I thought I should get a couple quick initial thoughts out there about the game.

  • Campaign
    • The visuals on the cutscenes amazing and detailed
    • The layout of the five stories is good
    • My only issue is the length of Campaign is short in playtime terms
  • Multiplayer
    • The classic modes are still good (Rush, Team Deathmatch, Conquest, Domintation)
    • The horses are more imortal than tanks…. If horsers were this durable, why did the army need tanks?
    • Flying the airship is awesome!
  • Misc
    • The UI is a bit clunky as the top level menu does not stay like on the website
    • It appears that there is no loadout option on the menu

Overall, this is a good game which I will continue to explore and probably curse when it is overrun by aimbots/hackers in two weeks

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NASCAR continues to drive in reverse

To off topic of the usual Baseball/Basketball/Football/Soccer discussion, I want to take today’s post and discuss NASCAR racing. And based on the recent TV ratings and attendance numbers this might be a post that is not viewed by many. I caught a little bit of the race on Sunday and noticed the large empty sections of the bleachers of the rain postponed race. It got me thinking that this seems quiet common of all NASCAR races in recent years, and with article recently on low TV ratings, it makes me think how this could have happened to a sport that was considered a top tier sport a mere 20 years ago.

In my thoughts, there are could of reasons NASCAR has fell on hard times:

  1. Single TV Contact – This in my opinion is the biggest miscalculation and gaff for NASCAR, possibly greater than the next five combined. For the 2001 season, NASCAR signed a single network contact with FOX in the hopes people would know which network would have the race each week. Later on, FOX sub-contracted with NBC for the second half of the season. This model/idea had one major flaw, there was no incentive for other network to provide any coverage like it did for the previous 30 year. If you looks at the other major sports, they all have multiple network contacts: NFL (CBS, NBC, FOX, ESPN), MLB (Regional, FOX, TBS, ESPN), NBA (ESPN, ABC, TNT, Regional) and NHL (Regional, NBC, NBCSN). NASCAR previously had contracts at the track level with ESPN, TBS, TNT, NBC, ABC, CBS, FOX, TNN…. That is seven network that did not care to promote NASCAR or provide coverage, that is seven networks that might be promoting the sport during another sport telecast for an upcoming broadcast.
  2. Inconsistent sponsorship – Back when I use to follow NASCAR closer, you knew which driver was in which car because of the sponsorship/color scheme, but this no more. Sponsorship’s change way too much to have any consistence to follow a driver. Though this might be one that really be fixed.
  3. Race for the championship – Back in 2003, NASCAR thought (incorrectly) they had a major crises on their hands…… a driver won with only one win. This championship for Matt Kenneth led to the “Race for the Championship” which would be a playoff system. The problem is, why should other drivers really try (and sponsors pay for cars outside the championship) when will not receive equal focus?
  4. Not everybody can win – When you have 40 (or 43 previously) cars on the track in the 90’s and before, you knew on any given week (and with a little luck) that a driver could win. Those days are gone because the technical gap is too great, there is only 10-15 drivers that can really win each week. It is now too costly to get into the sport, the cars are too different to the fans to relate too and wins too hard (without a 5 car team).
  5. Inconsistent race dates – If you compare the 2015 to the 1996 season, you see that there was 0 Saturday races in 1996 (5 in ’15) and only two races at night (9 in ’15). This not knowing when the sport if on, coupled with issue number one leaves the fans confused when the sport is on.
  6. Same tracks – The tracks are too similar to each other. If you use the 2015 season as reference, you only have a couple  different track types, notice the issue that there are too many of the semi-oval tracks. People want to see a variety and not the same race week after week.
    1. Semi Oval – Atlanta, Las Vegas, Fontana, Texas, Charlotte, Kansas, Michigan, Kentucky, Richmond and Chicagoland.
    2. True Oval – Dover, Loudon, Indy, Darlington, Homestead.
    3. Short Track – Martinsville, Bristol
    4. Super Speedway – Daytona and Talladega
    5. Odd ball/Road Course – Phoenix, Pocono, Watkins Glen

Now I’m not one just to leave the issues on the table and not provide recommended solutions. Below is how I would fix NASCAR.

  1. Bid the races out on the track by track basis, spread the wealth…. get NASCAR’s name out there on multiple networks all the time all year long.
  2. Continue the race to the championship, but also include minor trophies. You could have a season long point trophy, an FA Cup style races where certain races drivers are paired off with the one finishing better moving on until the final two face off, a race for the rest for the drivers outside the top 16. All of these can run concurrently with the Chase, this might give the fans and drivers an extra inventive to race.
  3. Make the cars more like traditional cars since nobody wants to watch racing cars they can not relate too.
  4. Make all races (except 1st Bristol and 1st Charlotte) a day time race on Sunday (no Saturdays). I know the reason the Saturday races were added, but it just does not work. All Sunday races start at 12pm or 3pm CST depending if is a west coast race.
  5. There needs to be a effort into mixing up the tracks, NASCAR needs to add tracks that race different, have different strategy, add some more road courses. Drop some of these semi-ovals races from 2 per track to 1.

 

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Thinking once again….

It’s been over two years and I’m once again going to give this blog thing a try. I’m going to try to post a little less often to avoid burnout(Once every 7-9 days), hopefully on Sunday’s for the most part. Looking back at my last posts, this is what I see that has happened since the last time I posted:

  • Bret is still the coach as Arkansas and it did not turn out to be the disaster I predicted [can’t get them all right I guess :)]
  • Gary Andersen is gone from Wisconsin (Thank God!) and Paul Chryst is the coach. Hey, we are off to a very good start….better than Bret 🙂
  • Bo is gone a Wisconsin for basketball and Gard is in. He seemed to over achieve last year with mid-level players.
  • The Brewers ended up taking since the last post thanks to the incompetence of Doug Melvin and we had to blow the whole thing up. Amazing that the Cardinals never have to go into a rebuilding mode (and it is not because of that larger fan base.
  • Bench clearing brawls still happening in MLB even though the solution is SIMPLE. New GM, same idiotic policy (See prior post)
  • The Bucks got new owners and getting a new stadium.
  • Listening to the Dan Patrick show the other day and they mentioned that the NBA will make it a point of emphasis to enforce traveling. I laughed too.
  • A point that is close to me…. The Wisconsin Rapids Rafters of the Northwood’s League won the championship this year. As a 9-pack holder and was at all the playoff games it was truly great following the team including the walk off home run in game 1 of the championship.
  • The Pro Bowl is still as boring is bad as always….. If they would only change it to a future stars with rookies and second year players
  • Now onto soccer, I have really have started following Sacramento Republic FC
  • Carlisle FC having a good season
  • Big Brother has really gone into the toilet. It basically has become repeat comp after repeat comp. It really lacks in game play in recent seasons, as alliances don’t matter and skating through is the new norm
  • What is this with CBS delaying Amazing Race?
  • I bought a drone to fly in the park. Videos are here.
  • Countdown to Battlefield 1 has started
  • House of Cards was great and the following season was good
  • Other Netflix shows I have been watching:
    • Last Man Standing
    • Poirot
    • Family Guy
    • Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (Season 2 is stupid IMO)
    • Narcos
    • Chopped
    • Cutthroat Kitchen (Is awesome!)

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Thoughts for the week

It has been a while since I have published a meaningful post so here is goes. This week I would just like to do a couple of quick hitters thoughts.

  • A big win for the Badgers on Sunday over Michigan State. A couple of things I noticed with the victory.
    • Traevon Jackson did come up with the big shot, but did do plenty along the way to shoot the team in the foot. When Traevon does not think about the shot is when he comes through.
    • Sam Decker comes out with another below average game. He was only 3-8 from the field with all 3 pointers along with 2 free throws. Decker, who claims that he was going to be more aggressive inside took only 3 shots inside. It appears that Decker let the NBA 1st round pick status go to his head.
    • Bo Ryan has shown that he is unable to learn from his past mistake and truly understand how good coaches play certain situations. The other night Bo did not understand that in a last shot situation with under ten seconds. You should get the ball in the front court and either take the shot or make one quick pass and then shot. Traevon hesitates and the game is lost. Tom Izzo being down 3 at the end of the game, inbounds the ball, makes one quick pass and buries the three. Only the three ball hurts you, but yet he seemed not ready to cover it.
    • Bo Ryan as has the trend to put the final play in the hands of the point guard. This is generally countered by the double team, but this did not occur Sunday. Any team that plays the Badgers should understand this and exploit it in the future.
  • I have been doing a lot Olympic watching and have noticed a couple of things.
    • NBC has to be thanking the television gods for the location of this Olympics and the location in 2018. This time difference between Russia and the United States allows NBC to cut the broadcast/sport down and insert as many additional commercials. There should be no reason that NBC loses money this year. I think that is why some people do not watch, or do not watch as much as they should.
  • On the lighter side of news, I was crowed 1st division champion on Saturday on Smallball.com on the football side.
  • I see that the Brewers are having another go around with K-Rod, any guesses to who will he be traded to?
  • Flappy Birds is a really addictive gam.

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House of Cards coming soon!

To go a little off topic than the usual sports…. Only 7 more days until House of Cards!

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Smallball

I would like to go “off-topic” in this post to talk about this website I have known about for the past 10 years and have used for the past 5 years. It is called www.smallball.com . This site allows you to train your own baseball or soccer team and then play them in simulated games.

This game is good for the player who does not want to play a whole bunch of games or rely on your own keyboard skills.

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‘Rush’ movie review (more like statment)

So what did I spend the Packers bye week doing? Going to a movie. I decided to go see the movie Rush from director Ron Howard.

I’m not going to get into the plot of the movie, that is what Wikipedia is for. Overall, I thought this was very good movie that does live up to its name. The acting is above average, but not award winning. The awards from this movie will come from the directing which was great in my perspective.

This movie was well worth the Matinee price I paid to get in.

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