Archive for October, 2008

phillies win world series

October 31, 2008 1 comment

pico asked me to step in for a moment and celebrate the philadelphia phillies! whoooooooooooo! YES CAN US! wahoooooooooooooo! whoooooooooooooo!!!!!
(i am not the writer that pico is, but i did draw a celabratory phanatic!)

shirts: phinally! / phightin’ like it’s 1980

as a philly expat, i sadly didn’t make it back for the craziness, but through the wonders of the internets, i have been able to see car flipping, crowded streets, drunks, idiots, drunks, happy announcers, some drunks, and general craziness. however, if you are looking for the single most appropriate way to celebrate the phillies win, and the city’s first major championship since 1983, why it’s setting your boxers ablaze in the middle of broad street. i just hope this guy’s broad street bullies didn’t get too cold. pheel-deez!

Athens GA – First in Ed-cut-ation

October 31, 2008 Comments off

From Columbus, GA’s Ledger-Enquirer:

The Clarke County School District found a way to solve its problem of so many teacher absences the Friday before the Georgia-Florida football game – simply close school.

Last year 137 teachers called in saying they wouldn’t be in class and the district was able to find only 113 substitute teachers.

Administrators studied the absences and found that almost twice as many teachers called in the Friday before the game – played 360 miles away in Jacksonville, Fla. – than on an average school day.

Schools in nearby Madison and Oglethorpe counties also are taking the day off.

Tad McMillan, principal of Barrow Elementary, said, “I think it’s a wonderful confluence of purposes.”

I guess football’s a little big down there… but isn’t the Georgia-Florida game tomorrow?

Categories: football, funny, Sports

An Apology About my Last Lute Olsen Post

October 30, 2008 Comments off

Turns out that Lute had a stroke last year and is suffering from depression, explaining his bizarre behavior. An explanation from the Dagger blog on Yahoo! Sports.

So I apologize for my last Lute Olsen post; I should have added that Lute may have had his reasons. And this blogger will try not to go off half-cocked in writing opinion pieces. No, that’s not right; when I go off half-cocked, I’ll make a point to give some nods to each person’s right to live how they want, as long as it’s not infringing on another’s livelihood.

Last Week in the East Coast Bias

October 28, 2008 2 comments

Slate asks why do politicians seem to have so many affairs, and such iffy marriages? How did AIG use 75% of the government bailout lifeline (and how are they now asking for more)?

And 30 Rock is coming back this week – watch for Oprah and a fine actress named Tijuana Ricks on the flight behind Tina Fey and Oprah. Tina Fey tank topTina Fey gets to be known for more than her Sarah Palin impression.

* St. John’s didn’t get the coveted recruit, Jordan Williams. The Torrington High forward chose Maryland for the playing time and criminal justice program. Good luck to him; perhaps he’ll become like Sean May – a little earthbound but extrememly capable in the post.

* The East Coast Bias’ Big East Projections (discussed a little on Villanova By The Numbers), with Louisville in the number 1 regular season spot.

* Big East media day notes include the coaches’ preseason poll, links to other Big East scribes and quotes from Justin Burrell from, and more quotes from Burrell on knowing his role.

* Connecticut’s Nate Miles, after violating his restraining order, will go to the College of Southern Idaho, or CSI, to play ball for a year. Will he be back at U Conn? Will he go somewhere else, or even to the professional ranks?

* A note on the upcoming preseason NIT Tournament, based on a post from Storming the Floor.

* In case no one’s disabused you of the notion, public stadium financing doesn’t lead to strong local economic impact.

* Lute Olsen steps down as head coach of Arizona (the title of the post refers to how Bill Belichick stepped down from his day-long stint as the head coach of the New York Jets); this post is on how I think head coaches who quit suddenly aren’t practicing what they preach, and how Arizona’s future is still bright.

* Unfortunately, one of our favorite blogs, CardsHoops, seems to have hung up the keyboard.

* The Mets hired a coach with the awesome name Razor Shines. There is also a Moneyball movie coming out.

* Isiah Thomas may have overdosed on a few too many sleeping pills… but there will be more on this during the week.


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Best Wishes to Isiah Thomas

October 24, 2008 1 comment

Isiah Thomas went to the hospital this morning for an overdose on sleeping pills. Ten pills were taken; the police don’t believe it’s a suicide attempt.

Whatever the problem is, good luck to Isiah and a speedy recovery.

Categories: injury, Knicks, Sports

More About Lute Olsen

October 24, 2008 1 comment

(photo courtesy of AZ Central)

And not "Lieut", as they say on Law and Order.

Gary Parrish has a piece on how perhaps Lute Olsen should have resigned, that he was losing a step or had lost control. And that if he had stepped down, at least earlier in the year, the school could have found a new, high profile coach (more on that below). The AZCentral/ Tuscon Citizen has a timeline of Lute’s crazy last year, filled with drama, weird moments, and rancor.

lute olsen press conferenceIt’s sad to see a college basketball icon go out like that. And really, it’s sad to see anyone struggle with the decision and then choose to leave at an inopportune time. As long as he doesn’t claim to be rejuvenated in a few months and asking for his job back.

But I always hate that coahces of any age love to tell kids not to be quitters… but then they quit, like Bob Knight. And they quit when their team needs him. Look, a man or woman has to know if they can fulfill their obligations. Not so far as "I didn’t blink", but at least to the point where if they accept the job, they plan on trying their damnedest to make it work for the duration of the important period of their jobs.

Coaches like Bill Parcells and Bob Knight just piss me off. It’s obnoxious to simply decide, a few days into practice, that he doesn’t want to coach anymore. If it is health related, say so. To me, sports is supposed to teach responsibility. The man could have called his retirement at the end of the year and done his goodbye tour, letting some of his assistants do some game coaching, taking a game off for "health reasons" or "chasing Arizona skirt" reasons.

The future of Arizona basketball will likely be bright. Though some top recruits have moved on (Negedu to Indiana, for example), there is some talent. And The Wildcats have a strong brand name in college hoops. Parrish mentions a couple of very likely candidates to be candidates – Gonzaga’s Mark Few and Pittsburgh’s Jamie Dixon. Dixon is a California guy, and has coached at Northern Arizona. he did turn down an offer to become coach at Cal – was it because he loves Pittsburgh so much or because Cal is a weaker job in the Pac 10? The Associate Head Coach, Tom Herrion, has been a head coach before.

Whoever gets a look at Arizona will start the annual coaching shuffle, where coaches are booted from their hot seats and hot coaches are elevated. Will Mark Few want the Arizona job (Gonzaga’s pretty nice and almost ensured a spot in the NCAAs)? Will Lute Olsen’s spectre loom over the program? Will Lute Olsen’s influence loom over the program? What hot mid major coach will try to make a jump (Fran MCCaffrey from Siena is the first who comes to mind)?

Will the mercurial Bob Knight make his return in Arizona (I doubt it)?

But food for thought. Any coaching names that sing out to you?

Razor Shines, Willie Randolph, CitiField Construction, Moneyball Movie, and Tatis Comeback

October 24, 2008 1 comment

* The Mets have a new third base coach with the amusing name “Razor Shines.” I keep think that’s a typo, but no. This from the coach who said, about Reyes’ demonstration of frustration this year,

“I told him next time he does that I’m going to get my blade out and cut him. I’m a gangster. You go gangster on me, I’m going to have to get you. You do that again, I’m going to cut you right on the field.”

* Across from CitiField, the Constructicons have taken down the old Mets scoreboard (video). It’s kind of sad to see. Wait, what’s that? The Constructicons are not real?

* Fernando Tatis – your comeback player of the year from Sporting News.

* The Daily News’ Adam Rubin lets us know that former Met manager Willie Randolph is in consideration for the Brewers job, and a couple of bench coach positions.

* And non-Mets related: Michael Lewis’ Moneyball, on Billy Beane’s stewardship of the Oakland A’s under a tight budget, is being made into a movie.

Categories: baseball, Mets, Sports

Lute Olsen Steps Down as HC of AZ

October 23, 2008 Comments off

Man, that last practice must have really sucked. Lute Olsen is walking away from the Arizona Wildcat basketball program, but no official statement’s come out yet.

Categories: college basketball, Sports

Stadium Financing Does not Lead to Strong Local Economic Impact

October 23, 2008 1 comment

Dave Zirin has a rant – and one I don’t necessarily agree with for once – that has an interesting nugget that quotes a couple of sports economists on what people (should) already know about stadium funding schemes:

Of course, Merritt makes the case that such a public expenditure would be economic steroids for the community. But that’s not holding water, not even with diehard local fans. As Jules Boykoff, a professor at Pacific University, former pro soccer player, and a big Portland Timbers fanatic who brings his 6-year-old daughter to the games, wrote in The Oregonian:

“More jobs? Economic development? Sounds great! The only problem is that it’s not true. Recently, sports economists Dennis Coates (University of Maryland) and Brad R. Humphreys (University of Alberta) carried out research asking whether cities that built new stadiums to entice professional sports teams experienced a boost in the local economy. In their study–which spanned nearly thirty years and examined almost forty attempts to lure teams–they couldn’t find a single example of a sports franchise jump-starting the local economy.

U Conn’s Nate Miles to the College of Southern Idaho

October 22, 2008 Comments off

Of interest – Nate Miles, he of the abuse allegations and violation of restraining order 16 minutes later, will go to play at College of Southern Idaho (Junior College/ 2-yr institution), per Andy Katz’ blog. Katz also mentions that he thought of himself as a one and done, and may enter his name in the NBA draft.