Posts Tagged ‘Syracuse Orange’

The best thing to do with most haters - smile and wave.

 

It’s that time of the year – March. To the person who doesn’t watch sports, it’s just a month that usually brings us the first taste of Spring. But to a sports fan, it means one thing – March Madness, the most exciting time period and playoffs in all of sports. Yes, I said ALL of sports. Because between the college basketball conference tournaments and the NCAA championship tournament, there isn’t a single month all year with more unpredictable, exciting, scintillating games and matchups than March. That doesn’t make NCAA basketball the overall best sport to most – but you can’t match it for the excitement it generates during it’s playoffs. And, unlike any other major American sport – you truly can have a Cinderella team come out of nowhere to shock the world. And no matter who you pick to win it – more often than not, those teams actually don’t win it all. The upsets are part of the great joy associated with March Madness.

March Madness is The Player Haters' Ball for a number of sports fans.

But moreso than any other time of year – this is the primetime showcase for the sports hater. It’s like The Player Haters’ Ball for sports hating. Oh, the sports hater is there year-round – trashing certain teams and athletes nonsensically, simply due to the success of those teams and players. More often than not, these haters have become haters because their own teams suck or aren’t as good as the top teams – so, since they cannot attain happiness by watching their team, they find it in hoping another team that is good fails. That’s the absolute mark of a sports hater – they pay attention and care as much about a team that’s not their own as the do the one they do cheer. OR, the player they like isn’t as good as another, or they feel the need to down another player simply because that player may be considered by some better or in the same league as the player that they support/like.
Living in Buffalo, NY – I’m naturally surrounded by tons of them (see: most Buffalo Bills & Buffalo Sabres fans).

This has reared it’s head this week, as college b-ball heats up. I’ve heard people laughing at others’ teams who lost – when they have nothing to do with their own teams. People posting trash talk on their friends Facebook pages – when their team is straight wack juice. And, as a Syracuse Orange fan (and proud alumnus), I’m used to having jealous scrubs hate on my team because – well, truth be told, since I’ve been on this Earth, the team has never had a losing season. Like – literally never. Since I’ve been alive. And they ALWAYS get at least 20 wins. That type of success breeds hate.

So, with that said, let me prepare my fellow Orangemen and Orangewomen (yes, I’m old school, so I still call us that) for what will come. But please – anyone who isn’t an Orange fan, apply this advice and analysis to your own teams – by all means. Here are 10 things to keep in mind during the month in regards to imbeciles hating on Syracuse – but also in a general sense year-round in response to sports haters.

 

1. The only people who can talk any real trash before the NCAA tournament are Kentucky fans. However, you will find very few true Kentucky fans most likely if you live in NY State, Maryland, Virginia, etc. – basically, in the North East part of the U.S. What you WILL find is quite a few bandwagoners who like to ride with the #1 team. Feel free to call them out, since we all know next year they’ll mysteriously be Ohio State/Syracuse/Duke/UNC/insert team here fans.

The rest of the haters who open their mouths to you? Not much to really say, seeing as Syracuse is the #2 school in the nation, and was #1 for 6 weeks prior to that. But they’ll still yap. Make sure you remind them that all that yapping doesn’t change the fact their team isn’t close to our level.

2. Prepare for absurdity in predictions. Haters have no rational thought or logic in what they say or the “analysis” they offer. They’re hoping your team loses. So keep that in mind when they say West Kentucky has a real shot at beating SU. These type of idiots really think because they hope something and want to see it, it will happen. It’s quite possibly mommy and daddy never taught them the difference between the fairytales they read and reality – Simon was a cartoon, dude. He’s not going to draw a loss for a team simply cuz you don’t like them.

3. Get ready for the extraneous. I already had some dude pop off this week about Syracuse players being druggies, in addition to the obligatory Bernie Fine jokes. None of that stuff has changed reality of what’s been accomplished or effected the team, right? Don’t let the hater distract you with that. Stick to the topic at hand – his/her team sucks, and probably is on the bubble to even make the NCAA tournament. All that crap has nothing to do with SU being a favorite to be the 2012 NCAA champions.

They’ll also try to bring up the past…“I remember back in ’05 when my team beat yours…” – huh?!? I remember last night when West Wichita Junior College beat your wack-arse squad by 34 on ESPN 2, homie. Fudge outta here with that. Understand – most haters don’t want to deal with the present reality. It makes them feel better to say anything to slight your team. Don’t let them alter the conversation – stick to what’s eating them up to begin with. And that’s your team being good.

4. When your team takes a loss, prepare for them to ride the jock of the team that beat them. You know how many Notre Dame basketball fans I know? None. You know how many I knew when they handed Syracuse their first loss of the season? Tons. Take it in stride – the hater is actually revealing themselves to be completely pathetic by hitching on to a team they know nothing about. Remember – it’s about finding joy at the expense of a team or player that’s good. The pathetic scrubs are actually sitting at home watching every game your team plays, just like you are – except they’re cheering for them to lose, so they can feel good about it and talk spit. Call them out for jock-riding, and feel free to ask them how well their team has been doing as of late.

5. Don’t even respond to phone calls or texts. I have a simple rule – if you never talk to me about my team when they’re doing well, we certainly aren’t talking when they aren’t. In fact – calling or texting me right after a loss when I know you’re attempting to do so to either be happy at the loss or to ask stupid questions like “What happened?” is a sure way to not hear from me for weeks – possibly months. It’s not that I’m upset – I didn’t pick up the phone, and I most likely deleted any voicemail or text without being exposed to the content – it’s just knowing you were on some hater ish to begin with. And I know those people just by seeing their names pop up.

6. Feel free to clown their rationalization for being a hater. Let it ’em have it, and call ’em out at every opportunity. After all, hating is undeniably an intrinsic form of b!+<ha$$ness. There IS no good excuse for it. I once had someone try to justify it by saying “Well, you’re always wearing your Syracuse gear and talking about your school when they’re on TV.” AND?!? Muddatrucka – it’s not my fault your team sucks, and you didn’t even go there – you went to Devry. Own that – don’t fault me for being prideful. Or try this one: “I don’t like Syracuse because Jim Boeheim looks like a weasel. How’d he get that fine wife anyways??” Umm…you sound real suspect saying ish like that, homie. Real suspect.

7. Don’t fall into the trap of hating in retaliation. Many people do this, in an attempt to get the hater back. All it does is feed the pathetic dummy’s hate. Prime example – some of the biggest haters I know are Georgetown Hoya fans. In fact, I think to BE a fan of those mutts, you must first be a hater. For real. Yet, when they lost to Cincinnati Thursday – I didn’t email any of them. No phone calls. No posts on their Facebook walls. Why? Because I don’t care about those mutts. I only care about them when they’re in my team’s path. Likewise – I’m not watching them hoping they lose to talk ish. I didn’t enjoy them losing. I didn’t care. I can watch them play and not care – I care about MY TEAM. Even teams I don’t like, (GTown, Duke, Notre Dame, BYU, etc.) – I’ll watch them if the game is a good one, and not feel the need to talk ish to any fans of those teams. Only if it comes up at a later date do I even reference it to a hater.

Remember – their team isn’t as good as yours. You should expect them to lose or suck. I know I do.

8. Haters will invent the future to make themselves feel good. Oh, this is a staple of the hater. They love to tell you what will happen to your team in the future based on – well, based on hate. Nothing factual, logical or rational. “Next year your team will suck when such-and-such happens. Such and such player will decline. Your team’s coach won’t even be there in 2 years.” Or my favorite: “Karma will get them.” Karma?? What karma? Based on your dislike? Well – if you’re that powerful, mighty djinn – why don’t you cross your arms, nod your head and conjure up a championship for your team, huh? And while you’re telling the future and conjuring up titles – can you do a kick-arse rendition of “Never Had A Friend Like Me?”

Love that song.

Maaannn…ignore that tomfoolery. These same putzes predicted “This is the year!” for their crappy squad at the beginning of the year, right? Okay then. You already know the live a land called Delusion. No sense in even entertaining their asinine “predictions” rooted in hate.

9. Don’t be a sore loser. We all experience disappointment when our team loses, but you can’t win ’em all. Odds are, your team isn’t going to be the last team standing every year. But don’t give the haters the opening they desire. If you’re completely crushed, don’t exhibit that in front of a hater. Because all they’ll do is make it much worse, and most likely make you want to bust them right in chops. I personally don’t get THAT upset…but some people do. All I’m saying – don’t reveal devastation in front of the biggest haters you know. They’re ALREADY annoying jerk-offs, right?

10. Even when your team wins, don’t expect any credit. Seriously. Expect them to list every reason your team won that didn’t have to do with them simply being the best overall team. They’ll tell you how lucky your team was to avoid another squad. The refs will have been on your team’s side, or even flat-out handed them the game. Or it was due to teams just having bad games – never due to your team, oh, I don’t know – winning on their own merits. Even if your team won by 50 points each game – they’ll go as far as saying the games were rigged. Never put the conspiracy theory above the hater. The hater is relentless in their commitment to hate.

 

And there you have it. 10 guidelines you should follow in dealing with haters. I can easily deal with these morons, but I know they annoy the crap out of many of my friends, especially my Orange family. Just remember, always – they’re miserable little putzes who take joy in watching a good team lose or decline. Do what I do – have fun with them. A hater’s worst enemy is the truth and reality. Hit ’em with it – reality bites. Just like their teams, most likely.

And, for those Syracuse haters reading this (because I know they are – haters never miss an opportunity to check out things related to the teams they’re hating on) – here’s a little something for you to gnash your teeth at…

Dion Waiters dunked all over UConn - similar to what he's done all season long to every team the Orange have played.

 

We see you – Hi, Haters!!!

Thanks to all of you who read and support the blog! There are now over 100 people following SPQ on Facebook – thank you sincerely for reading the material and offering your comments and feedback.

In the past week, there have been a number of questions people have asked me both in-person and online regarding my thoughts on things currently in sports. Most of these questions and comments were asked with the thought of me addressing them here in the blog…so I’ve taken a few of them and decided to do just that. Without further ado…

What are your thoughts on LeBron James being called out by Larry Bird? And what’s up with the Miami Heat??

First off – people are taking this Larry Bird thing way too seriously, and out of context. I posted the story on the Facebook page the other day – Bird said 3 things of note. He said LeBron is the best player in the NBA right now, that he thinks he’d be more fun to play with than Kobe Bryant, and that if he wanted to win – he’s choose Kobe over LeBron. There’s nothing wrong with any of his comments. I wrote previously – LeBron is this season’s MVP, and it’s not even close. He’s putting up Oscar Robertson numbers. Even mentioning The Big O’s name in relation to a current player is crazy – he’s THAT legendary. And James is doing it effortlessly. In an overall sense, I don’t think LeBron is the best player in the league. But based on what he’s actually doing statistically, on a team with 2 other all-stars? I can easily see why anyone would call him the best current player in the league. And it’s not a silly comment – it’s a good argument that’s worthy to have.

The problem is, LeBron can’t stop himself from himself. Soon after this, he decides to publicly address Kendrick Perkins‘ comments about his tweets about Blake Griffin’s dunk of the year (read that here). The problem is, he comes across like he’s crying and looking for sympathy again – and attention-whoring, which is what Perkins was saying the first place. Especially when he says things like “I’m an easy target; if someone wants to get a point across — just throw LeBron’s name in there. You could be watching cartoons with your kids and you don’t like it, you say, ‘Blame it on LeBron.’ If you go to the grocery store and they don’t have the milk that you like, you just say, ‘It’s LeBron’s fault.’

Makes me think of this:

He also addressed the Bird comment by basically saying if he had 5 rings and Kobe didn’t, Bird would say the Kobe comment about him. Umm…AND?!? You know what- that may be true. But why not focus on the compliment, dude? Bird said James is the best player in the game. Of course, James, jumping from villain last year to the poor victim role this year, wanted to take address it as though he was slighted. Newsflash – earlier this season, James’ own teammate Chris Bosh said at the end of the game, he’d rather see Dwayne Wade take the final shot because he’s a proven winner (read here). And that’s just simply not who James is at this point. This is no secret to anyone. Even James, who by his own words jumped ship to Miami because he needed help to win a title that he thought he’d never get as the centerpiece of a team.

This dude needs media training. He needs someone to coach him on when to shut up and just play, and how to react to things. When to do interviews, and when not to. The worse thing is – his own teammate, Wade, is like the perfect NBA player in that regard. You’d think he’d learn from Wade – but I suspect James’ ego prevents him from listening to his buddy (who has tried to coach James on the subject).

Finally, as far as the Heat go – overblown. Every time they lose, it’s a “what’s wrong with the Heat?” question. Nothing’s wrong. They’re going to lose games. Get used to it. But they’re still by far the best team in the East, and quite possibly the league. Does that mean a title? I don’t know. They definitely have a better chance than last year. But they have the 3rd best record in the league – no one reacts to the Chicago Bulls and Oklahoma City Thunder in similar fashion when they lose. The Heat are fine – except at the end of 4th quarters with the ball in James’ hands.

Couldn’t resist. Lolz…

Why don’t you more stories on baseball, the NHL, or boxing?

Pretty simple – like most Americans, I don’t watch or care too much for hockey. I will comment and post stories on it from time to time, but truth is – more people watch “Golden Girls” reruns than the typical nationally televised hockey game (I’m not joking – I used to show hockey fans the ratings). As for baseball, the season hasn’t started, and I suppose I may do more with that once it does. Boxing? I love boxing, but it’s a dead sport. Very few fights to look forward to in terms of marquee matchups. But I’ll gladly do articles on that when it warrants.

Is Eli Manning a Hall Of Fame Quarterback after winning his second Super Bowl?

Y’know, right after the Super Bowl, I’d have said yes. I suppose that’s me being caught up in the excitement and press a Super Bowl MVP generates. However…a week later, I’m not so sure. I’ve heard this question brought up all week, and I was leaning towards “yes” until I heard what former Super Bowl MVP Kurt Warner had to say on the subject. Unlike most, he backs his opinion with some good facts. And when I think of who isn’t in the Hall yet, and their accomplishments…I tend to agree with Warner’s assessment.

I will say – 2-3 more seasons of his normal production, and Eli’s in. No doubt.

You’re obviously a Syracuse fan – do you really think they can beat Kentucky?

In a word – yes.

I’m sure some will see that as bias, with me being an alum. But I’ve honestly watched the teams, and I don’t think anyone can beat Syracuse in the tournament if they’re healthy and focused. The problem is, people watch these top ten teams creaming other teams in their conference, and project that as what will happen to any team they play. I’m not so sure you would see the running dunkfests and lay-up drills Kentucky seems to always be doing if they played against the Orange zone. And while people like to compare how teams have played against other zones, there really is no comparison – the Syracuse 2-3 zone is by far the best every year in college basketball, and it’s so effective that coach Jim Boeheim is in charge of the Olympic team’s defense. That zone is very hard to play against if you’ve never faced it. And unless you’re best friends with Rick Pitino, it’s not easy to figure out in-game.

I hope they do play. In the championship. Syracuse actually lost a national championship game to Kentucky in the late 90s – a game in which the heavily favored Wildcats had to pull out the win late, after – surprise – having trouble handling the zone. Could Kentucky win? Of course. But my answer is, I think a healthy, full-strength Syracuse team would prevail.

Otto The Orange just might have reason to celebrate a title this year.

Who is the best PG in the NBA?

Funny – I’ve said for years it was Deron Williams. When you get past highlights and flashy plays, he plays good defense, is big enough to guard 2-guards, gives you scoring, assists and typically low turnovers…Williams is a beast at times. But this year? I can’t give it to him. No, he’s still good, but I don’t think he’s played anywhere near as effectively as when he was guiding the Utah Jazz. Ironically, the guy who was hailed as the best that I rejected as such – I now AGREE he’s the best, and no one is talking him up as such. Funny how that works…

Chris Paul is the best PG in the game currently.

Paul, who has always shot a good percentage from the field, is currently shooting 50%. More astounding, his 3-point percentage is outrageous – he’s gone from a career percentage of just under 40% to a video game-like 47% percent this season. His assists, steals and timely rebounds are in line with his typical excellent output, but most importantly to me – he’s no longer getting used by other PGs. That was biggest mark against him – though he averages over 2 steals by jumping passing lanes and ripping big men, his defense against good PGs was always pretty bad. Every time I watched him play against any of the better point guards – Tony Parker, Derrick Rose, Williams, Steve Nash, Russell Westbrook, etc. – he’d get lit up. That’s no longer happening. And you have to actually watch the games to see what I mean; it’s not about the boxscore.

Paul’s playing outstanding on the offensive end and possibly the best I’ve ever seen him do on the defensive end. And oddly enough – that’s actually been downplayed in light of his trade to the L.A. Clippers and the subsequent success of the team. But he’s all-world this season, in my opinion.

Thanks for the feedback. Any questions, feel free to submit them. Have a good weekend, and let’s continue to grow – please refer your friends on Facebook to “like” the page and join in the discussion! As always…Shoot, Pass, Quibble!

Hello, everyone. Happy New Year to all who have read or kept up with Shoot, Pass, Quibble! since this blog’s inception. Admittedly, in the waning weeks and months of 2011, my writing trailed off due to becoming increasingly busy in life, and not really wanting to keep up with things as much as I’d like in terms of daily writing. However, if you were on Facebook and had added the SPQ page, you know that I often posted various sports articles, news bits, blogs and updates – and provided commentary and opinion on those things posted.

I thank you all for keeping up with SPQ, and hope to be able to offer articles and insight on a more regular basis in 2012. Having a blog is indeed like having a second job – but I do enjoy it.

I won’t rehash stories and subjects that have obviously been dealt with, written about, and talked about – but here are my thoughts on a few things:

  • It’s been so gratifying to see Cam Newton break all types of rookie records and be one of the biggest stars in the NFL this season. I LOVE that all these chumps had to shut their mouths since about week 5 about him when they had written the book about him. I also love the shine Tim Tebow got, although it’s very clear – he has a lot to learn at the QB position. Still, I love the kid’s moxie and leadership.
  • Good offensive coordinator. BAD coach.

    I find it inexplicable that I know a handful of people who actually think Buffalo Bills coach Chan Gailey is good at his job. Like…it’s not even close. And if you look back, I SAID what would hurt the Bills in the long run would be coaching. I don’t want to hear they had injuries – EVERY team had injuries. The NY Giants lost almost their entire starting defense, and lost their TE, starting RB, and both starting WRs at different points this season. They won the NFC East. No, Chan sucks. No qualifier.

    Any time you put together consecutive loss streaks of at least 7 games in back-to-back seasons? Only a delusional person can defend that, in my opinion.

  • Now that the NBA is back, don’t believe the hype that the older teams will all suck and the teams with younger players will dominate. It will be hard, but if they can avoid injuries – the veteran-heavy teams will be able to maintain.
  • You’re a complete fool if you’re one of the people who subscribes to the belief that Kobe Bryant has “lost it”. Not a single NBA coach or GM would agree with you.
  • I don’t care about the BCS title game. At all. That may sound crazy to some, but I truly have no desire to see a LSU-Alabama rematch. I stopped watching the first game at halftime.
  • Though some might call me biased because it’s my alma mater…if you haven’t had a chance to see #1 Syracuse play basketball, you need to. They are by far the best team in the country. This may be the best complete squad Jim Boeheim has ever had. And that says A LOT – because he’s had some killer squads.
  • Color me tickled that people argued with me that both Tiki Barber and Terrell Owens would be on NFL rosters this season – when I said before the season began there was no chance…
  • The Oakland Raiders collapse to give up the AFC West was truly horrible. I’m hoping coach Hue Jackson cleans house on defense, which was horrible all year long.
  • It’s not true sports, but rather “sports entertainment…but the few times The Rock has appeared in WWE in the past year HAS  to have been the most entertaining moments for the company in years. Dude is just fantastic in front of a camera…and his feud with wrestler John Cenahas provided some of the best comedy in years…
  • The Russell Westbrook-Kevin Durant issue will pop up again at some point this season. Count on it. Westbrook just doesn’t get it.
  • I don’t know how Time Warner can possibly justify dropping MSG, when it plays Knicks, Rangers and Sabres games. People are NOT happy about that. Luckily, I have DirecTV – so I not only get MSG, I get multiple MSG channels. But that really stinks for fans of those teams if they have Time Warner.

Well, there you have it – first post of 2012. Like I said – I hope to post more regularly. It’s good to be back – I’m looking forward to the year. As always, feedback is welcome.

Until next time…Shoot, Pass, Quibble.

Great past few days in American sports. No big intro needed – let’s get in to it…

  • Tony Romo bit more than turf this past Sunday...

    Okay. I’ve never been one to be a Tony Romo basher; I think he’s a pretty good QB who is not worthy of the fawning some do over him – but definitely not worthy of the bashing others give him. But make no mistake about it – the Detroit Lions coming back from 24 points down to stun the Dallas Cowboys?? That rests solely on his shoulders. The guy threw 3 INTS – 2 of which were returned for touchdowns. He was hands down putrid as a QB in the 2nd half, and it resulted in the 4th-biggest regular season collapse in NFL history. Um – that’s bad. There’s no way you can look anywhere but Romo’s direction on this. Whatever you hear negative about Tony Romo this week? He MORE than deserves it.

  • And speaking of the Detroit Lions – wow. How about that comeback? This comes after being down 20 points to Minnesota last week! This team definitely has heart to go along with their tremendous talent. What stands out most to me in this game – WR Calvin Johnson, AKA Megatron,  BEASTING all over the hapless Cowboys defense, the way your pre-teen cousin would do whatever he wanted to you when you were 8 years-old playing in the back yard. It was embarrassing to see how easily he used them to go up and down the field and bring the Lions back for the win.And speaking of embarrassing – that’s how I feel about Cris Carter and Rob Ryan’s comments about Johnson. Make no mistake – Johnson is clearly one of the most unstoppable, dynamic WRs we’ve seen in the league in the past decade. His speed, size, pass-catching ability and vertical jump leave on-lookers breathless weekly. Yet, we’ve got these egomaniacs downing the guy. Rob Ryan, I kind of understand – he’s Dallas’ defensive coordinator, and if you know anything about Ryan, his brother Rex (Jets head coach) and their father Buddy (famed NFL defensive coordinator and head coach) – that’s what they do. They run their yaps, and tend to back it up more often than not. But saying the Cowboys’ defense played against 2 better WRs than Johnson each week in practice (Miles Austin & Dez Bryant)? Not smart, man. I get trying to fire your team up – but as the results prove, you might’ve fired HIM up a tad bit more. Ask your defense.

    What’s even better was Lions’ coach Jim Schwartz’s comments after the game: “I’m just glad that the third-best receiver on their team is on our team.” Ouch – BURRRRRRNNNNN!!!

    Even worse are Cris Carter’s comments at the beginning of the year. Carter is a Hall Of Fame WR, and there are few more qualified to talk about the WR position on TV than him. But when asked to name the top 6 WRs in the league, Carter made a point of excluding Johnson, and dismissed him as a “video game wide receiver”. As recently as last week, when Johnson had 2 TDs in each of the first 3 games of the season, Carter refused to give him props. This goes to the point I made earlier this season about today’s sports reporters, analysts and experts never being able to admit being wrong on a position they hold.

    The man they call "Megatron" has lept above criticism to become the most dynamic, exciting WR in the NFL this season.

    To his credit, after Sunday’s performance, Carter finally relented and gave him his props. “Right now, Calvin Johnson — there’s a king in every crowd, and he’s the king of the National Football League as far as wide receivers,” Carter said. It should be noted – Johnson tied Carter’s NFL record of 4 consecutive games with at least 2 TDs, set back in 1995. Even noted hater Merril Hoge had to give it up and name Johnson as his MVP of the league so far.

  • There was some REALLY TERRIBLE officiating going on Sunday. First off – the Buffalo Bills got hosed. Big time. It’s bad enough that inane “Tuck Rule” reared it’s ugly head in the 1st half, calling back a Bryan Scott fumble recovery for a touchdown (Scott would get an interception for a TD later). But towards the end of the game, with Buffalo driving for a score that could’ve put the game away, WR Stevie Johnson clearly made a catch for a 1st down (on 3rd down) – and it was ruled no catch. The replays clearly showed he made the catch – the call stood. Now, one could try to put it on the Bills defense for not stopping the Cincinnati Bengalson their final drive, but the Bills are a young team. You could definitely see the frustration and dismay on their faces, and it looked like they were deflated and distracted after that play. And the call was pure bull.The Arizona Cardinals got jobbed as well. Driving at the end of the game, NY Giants WR Victor Cruz makes a catch, and goes down to the ground with no one having touched him. He drops the ball, which was picked up by an Arizona player. Arizona could’ve run the clock out. Instead, the refs inexplicably declared Cruz down, saying he “gave himself up” by falling to the ground, and didn’t allow Cardinals’ coach Ken Wisenhunt to even challenge the ruling. NY scored one play later.

    I’d check these refs bank accounts. I’m sure they have more money in them than what’s declared on their income statements. Somebody got paid.

  • Madonna is set to perform at halftime of the Super Bowl. Um – why?? Seriously – I’m beyond sick of the NFL and it’s pre-games and halftimes selling out to Pop stars who have nothing to do with the game of football. Ugh.
  • Aaron Rodgers threw for 4 TDs, and ran for 2 more – while throwing for over 400 yards. You can’t even do that on a video game nowadays. Holy spit.
  • Speaking of video games – the follow-up to the greatest sports video game of all-time came out today. NBA 2K12 should tide NBA lovers over until we really get basketball back. I’m resisting my strong urge to buy it – for now.
  • I'm used to GOOD QBs at my alma mater Syracuse University - not average guys pretending to be D-1 caliber passers.

    I’m sick of debating with people about obvious crap in sports. My beloved Syracuse Orange lost to Rutgers in overtime this past weekend, in large part due to the unfettered crappiness of QB Ryan Nassib. This fool threw for 3 INTs – against Rutgers. I have a fellow alum who swears this bum is good because he’s put up some pretty good numbers until this game. Those numbers came against such garbage football teams such as Wake Forest, Rhode Island and Toledo. The one real program we played, USC, his numbers were inflated by late game throwing in a blowout – he was unable to move the team at any point against the Trojans when it counted.Nassib simply doesn’t look like a upper-level D-1 QB. He puts up good numbers against weak talent. Remember – this is the same guy who couldn’t beat out Greg Paulus for the starting nod a few years ago, and Paulus hadn’t played QB since high school. I grew up watching great SU QBs, and attended school in the Donovan McNabb era. This sort of garbage play that passes for “good” is not acceptable to me.

  • Speaking of McNabb – the boo birds are calling for him to be benched. But you know what? I’ve watched the Vikings past 3 games on “NFL Replay”. While no one can argue he’s playing at a Pro Bowl level, he is absolutely not the reason the Vikings are losing. His WRs can’t separate from anyone, and his defense is surprisingly bad. McNabb may take the fall, but if you watch the games and don’t listen to ESPN – he’s actually not the problem in Minnesota. Does he need to play better? No doubt. But how much better do you need to be when you’re giving your team 20-point leads and they’re still losing??
  • Well, it’s official – no deal in the NBA Lockout. This should shock no one if you pay attention; the owners’ endgame has always been to not bargain in good faith, and to try to force a crappy deal down the players throats after they miss game checks and begin to panic. Sorry, folks – we won’t see pro basketball for quite some time. Feel free to read up on things here, but just know – this is all on the owners. Even moreso than the NFL Lockout.  But what should shock the NBA – Kobe Bryant is actually going through with his pledge to play abroad.This is a huge shock, because it was always viewed as though the NBA

    Even though he's the most popular active basketball player in the world - Kobe Bryant playing in Italy is a HUGE shock.

    stars would use that as a threat, but not actually carry it out. My cousin pointed out how big it would be if one of the major stars did this, and opened it up for others to show they don’t need the NBA. It would hurt their image if a bunch of their players simply discarded them and were playing all over the world. Well, Kobe, who has quietly been doing a lot to help the players in the lockout (along with LeBron James, D.Wade, Kevin Durant and other star players), is going through with it – and at the same time actively raising his profile as the most popular sports figure in the world not named Michael Jordan.

    I don’t think people grasp how huge this actually is. I’ll save my prolonged commentary on it for now – but this could be a major game-changer. Props to my cousin Zeek and my man Marlon who called this possibility out back in the Spring. They apparently were on that Sword of Omens (“Thundercats”) type-stuff – they had “sight beyond sight”…

  • Wow – The Yankees are down 2-1 with an elimination game tonight? Smh. I know a lot of you will blame Joe Girardi for this state of affairs, and you may not be off in doing so. But you know who I blame??

    Those of you crabby fans who rejoiced in the Boston Red Sox not making the playoffs.

    I swear, it’s absolute truth – every single time I’ve seen people cheering for other teams to do crappy instead of worrying about their own team, their team never succeeds. And I saw too many Yankees fans acting like they had been given the World Series when Boston was eliminated from contention. That’s not how you do it, folks. Chuckle, razz Boston fans – and move on. Cats who rejoice in other teams losing or find an overwhelming amount of joy in the failings of rivals when they aren’t at the hands of your own team – wack, son. I also believe cats cheering for teams to lose in the playoffs so their team doesn’t have to play them subconsciously don’t have true faith in their team. I always want my teams to play the hardest, toughest teams en route to a championship and/or success – I want my team to be the best, not get lucky and slide into a title.

    So all you happy Yankees fans who acted like it was a holiday when Boston lost? This is your fault. If NY loses – it’s on you. Suck it up.

  • ESPN pulled their familiar “Are You Ready For Some Football??” intro from “Monday Night Football” last night, due to Hank Williams going on Faux News and making a bad comparison between president Barack Obama and Hitler. This guy has probably had one of the steadiest paychecks in music history, and yet he couldn’t keep his inner idiot redneck inside. I for one applaud ESPN for making the decision to pull him – the network isn’t exactly known for making wise decisions when it comes to controversies or controversial subject matter.

    Williams gave the obligatory “sorry if I offended anyone” backhanded apology. I’d love to see ESPN can him for good – I personally can do without the musical theatrics, and would much prefer a standard open like Fox Sports does on their Sunday broadcasts. But I’m thinking Williams appears back on the network in the near future.

    They day ESPN gets rid of this redneck's intro for good is the day I stop complaining about Jon Gruden's man-crushes when he's on the air.

  • Speaking of ESPN, their annual “Body Issue” of their magazine is coming out soon. This issue is famous for showing the naked, buff physiques of some of the best athletes in sports in an artful, interesting manner. You can check the list of who will appear in the buff here. I for one am looking forward to seeing soccer star Hope Solo and pro snowboarder Gretchen Bleiler, who has already appeared in the mens’ magazine “FHM”. Plenty of male stars for the ladies as well…
  • Yes, America – Brett Favre is still a douchebag.
  • The NFL injury bug is running rampant again – Texans’ WR Andre Johnson, Steelers LB James Harrison, Jets’ LB Bryan Thomas and 49ers’ DT Will Tukuafu are just some of the players who suffered injuries this Sunday and will miss anywhere from a few weeks to the rest of the season…
  • Everyone spent all last week talking about the Detroit Lions and the Buffalo Bills and their hot starts to the season. But has anyone outside of the Bay area noticed that the San Francisco 49ers are very quietly 3-1??
  • The Philadelphia Eagles are a mess.
  • Andy Roddick dropped his first-round match at the China Open to Kevin Anderson, 6-4, 7-5?? Wow. Andy hasn’t had a good year by his standards at all. It must be really hard for most athletes, I’ve always thought, to go out and talk to the press after a terrible loss. And then to maintain your cool as well with some of the stupid questions they can ask. Which sets up this video:

    Kudos, Andy. You have learned very well from The Coach Bill Parcells School Of Snarky Comebacks to Stupid Questions

I’m hoping you guys are all having a good week thus far. I’ll be back soon with my thoughts on the NBA Lockout, as a few have asked me specifically about it. Look for that in the next day or so. I look forward to all comments and feedback. And subscribe to the blog so you can get updates on when new articles are posted; as well as “like” SPQ on Facebook if you haven’t already done so. And more importantly – spread the word! The more people reading, the more I feel obligated to output.

As always – Shoot, Pass, Quibble!!!

These were the seats I had for the Oakland Raiders-Buffalo Bills game on Sunday. Life is good.

What up, everyone. Took a few days to myself to handle some business, relax and catch a game. The game in question didn’t turn out the way I wanted – the Buffalo Bills beat my beloved Oakland Raiders 38-35 – but it wound up being honestly one of the greatest regular season pro football games I’ve ever seen. The atmosphere, along with the game, was unbelievable!

So much to discuss over the past few days – so let’s get to it…

  • What’s that, you say? Cam Newton passed for 400+ yards again?

    All Cam Newton has done is set NFL records and lead his team in rushing - as a rookie.

    Against the defending Super Bowl champions? Uh-huh – after my article last week, a few heads still wanted to debate with me about him, still listening to “the experts” in the media. Again – I’m the only expert you need to listen to. Because I have no agenda, and have no problem admitting I’m wrong.

People can say whatever they like – every time this kid goes out to play in the National Football League, he makes history – literally. He’s only the 7th player in NFL history to post back-to-back 400 yard games. Oh, the chumps experts want to point out he threw 3 INTs and the team didn’t win – and?? 2 of those INTs were by all-world corner Charles Woodson, who does that against anyone. And last I checked, Cam doesn’t play defense. His team was in a position to win, and that’s more than anyone expected. If a person can’t give it up to him at this point, when Super Bowl MVP Aaron Rodgers was gushing about dude after the game – well, I already know what category to put you in.

  • The Buffalo Bills are for real. Oh, don’t get it twisted – I’m not putting them in Super Bowl contention yet. And this is Buffalo – they’re playing above their ability for what they have. But that’s the point – they’re playing above their ability. They’ve got heart, and 3 superb, underrated players at the skill positions – QB Ryan Fitzpatrick, RB Fred Jackson and WR Stevie Johnson. The defense is suspect, but if they get it together – watch out. This is unquestionably THE surprise team of the young NFL season. You’ve gotta give them props – Kansas City may be awful, but beating a high-octane Raiders team – and doing so by driving it down at the end to win on a 4th down play? Consider me very impressed.
  • Floyd Mayweather Part 1: This chump has been on the lips of everyone since the debacle Saturday night. Let me start with the fight – um, hello? You people are still paying for PPV boxing matches?? Tsk, tsk. Someone asked me did I want to chip in to “get the fight” and I laughed. Look – for you slower people out there – most major boxing matches on PPV will either (A) not live up to the pre-fight hype, (B) end in a debacle or fiasco (like this one), (C) make you realize that paying for it was a complete waste of money, or (D) prove all 3 things I listed correct at the same time. I, like many others, watched that joint for free.99 on the Internet – and to be honest, I wasn’t going to watch it. I only logged on because I needed something to watch before a new episode of “Bleach” came on Cartoon Network at midnight…

Floyd won - but he didn't win the way an all-time great would.

  • Floyd Mayweather Part 2: Floyd won like a sucka. For real. Oh, I’ve heard it all – Victor Ortiz was being dirty with the headbutts, so he had it coming (there’s no question he was dirty, that’s not my point). That’s what a lot of people are saying to try to justify Floyd’s sucker punches. But here’s the thing – Victor Ortiz isn’t remotely in Floyd’s class. I’d expect a hyped-up, over-matched bum like this guy to try something dirty once he started getting his arse kicked. Even so, he was caught, and a point was taken away. Floyd deliberately caught him as he was breaking embrace from an “apology hug”. Was it legal? Sure – ref had deducted the point, and had restarted the match. But the ref wasn’t even looking himself. Floyd engaged in giving the hug, then snuffed him. Meaning he knew what he wanted to do.

And my thing is this – regardless of the legality of the punches, I’ve watched

Does this look like the face of a guy distraught about losing? I'd smile too if I made millions and went home with her after the fight...

boxing my entire life. Watched footage of the greats, read up on it – the whole nine. I’ve never seen a great fighter have to do that to win. That was wack, especially seeing how easily he was winning the fight. And the only people I see defending it are Floyd fans. This is a big reason I have this blog – I’m honestly one of the few people I know who can talk about sports without any bias kicking in for teams or players I like.

To those who disagree, ask yourself this – if the situation was reversed, and Ortiz beat Floyd by quickly knocking him out after an embrace when he wasn’t ready to fight – would you honestly have the same opinion you do now in defending Floyd? Because, if you’re actually being honest with yourself – I’m betting 99% of those who disagree would be upset and calling Ortiz a cheap punk, even if Floyd had head-butted him first.

  • Floyd Mayweather, Part 3: I almost made this subject a separate blog by itself…but I’ll address it here. I was, and still am, completely mortifiedby the comments and reactions to Mayweather screaming in

    There is no excuse for Mayweather's disgusting display of disrespect and ignorance.

    an old man’s face (Larry Merchant) after the fight. The justification by the classless fans of Floyd is that Merchant often says critical things about Floyd. Um – so? And?? So let me get this straight – anyone paid to offer analysis and opinion about sports should be subject to intimidation, disrespect and cursing on live TV?? Larry Merchant is 80 years-old. I don’t know about the cretins who support and think this was funny, but I was raised to respect my elders. If Floyd has a problem with how Merchant talks about him (newsflash – most of the media talks negatively about Floyd), then he could’ve ended it when he said “Go talk to Victor”. That’s it – end the interview. That would have actually been more effective, because then Merchant would have to answer to his bosses as to why he couldn’t get an interview with the new champ after a fight – and those bosses would’ve more than likely either made Merchant ease up in the future, or not allowed him to do future interviews.

But screaming “You ain’t (spit)!!” in an old man’s face is the most classless, disgusting thing I’ve ever seen a boxer do in an interview. Hell, I can’t really think of any athlete doing that before. By comparison, I posted a blog applauding Chris Bosh, who faced incessant detractor Skip Bayless face-to-face. Bayless has said much more and way worse about Bosh – yet Bosh exhibited a calm demeanor and addressed him head-on. I gained a huge amount of respect for Bosh.

Muhammad Ali, Joe Louis, Jackie Robinson, Bill Russell – hell, even Barry Bonds in recent history – have faced way worse scrutiny and had much worse said and written about them. The things they had to deal with were really disrespectful, not just negative critiques of their abilities within the sport. They had to deal with the worst things said and done to them and the people around them. Guess what? NONE OF THEM (or others) ever reacted this way. And they might’ve actually been justified in doing so; and I suppose many would understand. So the excuse that Merchant had that type of thing coming falls short to an intelligent writer with manners and decorum.

No – I’ll say it flat-out – Floyd’s actions were the actions of a PUNK, and were classless, disrespectful, and disgusting. And those who support and cheer such action – I think you’re classless, disrespectful, and disgusting. And I think you didn’t get proper home training.

We as a society have embraced ignorance so much, we can’t even recognize it when it manifests itself. Some of us actually applaud such garbage. And those that do – I find your mindsets to be sick. Nuff said.

  • The news that Syracuse and Pittsburgh will be joining the ACC obviously sent shockwaves through the college sports world. As a SU alum, it feels like a punch to the gut – I’ve been a Big East head my entire life. This doesn’t make much sense – the money each school will get will be a miniscule increase over what they both already get. While it obviously makes the ACC a beast in all sports, especially basketball and football, it actually hurts my alma mater – our football program is rebuilding. We’re not even one of the best teams in a weak Big East football conference – so now we’re going to the ACC, with Pitt, Miami, Maryland, Clemson, Florida State, Virginia AND Boston College?? We go from rebuilding to being a football doormat. That team that everyone circles on the schedule and goes “Well, that’s a definite win.” And I don’t want to BE that school.

SU basketball coach Jim Boeheim isn’t happy about it, either: “If conference commissioners were the founding fathers of this country, we would have Guatemala, Uruguay and Argentina in the United States. This audience knows why we are doing this. There’s two reasons: Money and football.” Yup, Jim. And for me, what hurts even more – my school and Pitt conspired to do this. The ACC approached both schools a year ago, and put this in motion back then. SU and Pitt, 2 crucial members of the Big East (SU helped found the conference, for heaven’s sake), worked with the ACC to keep it a secret and put the wheels in motion. Do you guys know how hard it is to keep something like this a secret for a year in the information age?? No one knew anything about this?? Unbelievable. And there’s rumors the ACC wants UConn and Texas next. Smh…

  • So word is Terrell Owens is in Korea right now looking for a stem cell treatment he couldn’t get here in the states. Let’s call this for what it is – the desperate actions of a desperate man. Owens is in major financial trouble according to reports, in part due to his multiple kids with multiple mothers, and his lack of desire to pay support for the children or to even have a relationship with them. I feel no sorrow for him, and hope he doesn’t ever get a shot in the NFL again. He’s a team-killer, and has caused problems to every team he’s been on (except Cincinnati last year). He and Tiki Barber are getting what they deserve, in my opinion.
  • The NBA players union and the NBA are scheduled to have some of their lower level reps meet this week to hammer out a deal. Expect nothing to happen of note.
  • Jamaal Charles, Nick Collison, Thomas Davis and Roscoe Parrish – come on down! You’re the next contestants on “Injuries Linked To The NFL Lockout!!”…
  • Anytime you enter the game to Metallica's "Enter Sandman" - you know you're pretty much THE MAN.

    Mariano Rivera is the greatest closer ever – officially. Rivera has 5 championships in 17 seasons with the Yankees, and his story is literally that of a legend. I truly think you could make a movie about this guy’s life, and it’d be a huge hit. I won’t detail everything – you can read his bio here – but I’ll just say as a fellow Panamanian, this man truly makes me proud – on and off the field.

  • Saturday night is UFC 135, headlined by the light heavyweight championship between champion Jon Jones and challenger Quinton “Rampage” Jackson. Who you guys got in that match? I’m going with the champ, even though I love Jackson.
  • Congrats to the Phoenix Mercury for defeating the Seattle Storm to advance to the Western Conference Finals in the WNBA. I think Diana

    The Phoenix Mercury continued their post-season dominance in recent years.

    Taurasi is awesome, so good for her – but I’m mad I don’t get to see Seattle’s Sue Bird play any more. She’s one of my WNBA crushes (along with Swin Cash, Candace Parker and a few others). They’ll await the winner of tonight’s Game 3 between San Antonio and top-seeded Minnesota. In the East, the Indiana Fever will host the Atlanta Dream on Thursday in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals.

That’s all for now. Love to read your reactions…your turn to chime in. Shoot, Pass – Quibble!

What up, everyone. No specific topics on my mind the past 2 days, so here’s a few thoughts on various things in the world of sports…

  • I’ve gotta say – I find it hilarious how the talking heads on ESPN are reacting to Tedy Bruschi’s tirade against Chad Ochocinco earlier this week. To a man (and a woman) – not a single person sees anything wrong with what he said or how he came across. What, did ESPN mandate their employees all voice support on-air? By comparison, there have been mixed opinions on other outlets, and Bruschi’s own former teammate Rodney Harrison, while not dissing him, essentially said Tedy went overboard and that Chad does work hard, as anyone in the NFL will confirm. But the on-air bias displayed this week is both funny – and pretty wack
  • I’ve got 2 football games I’m a bit worried about in the next 2 days. The first is the Syracuse-USC game (Saturday, 8pm). SU, my alma mater, is 2-0 – but needed overtime to beat Wake Forest and only beat Rhode Island by 7 last week. That’s not exactly the types of performances that inspire me to believe they’re going to beat a perennial Top 25 team in their own backyard. On top of that, we’re dealing with multiple injuries, especially on defense. I’ll be cheering for my team, and hoping for the best – but I’m a bit scared at what could happen.
  • The other game I’m worried about (though less than the SU game) my Oakland Raiders travel to Western New York to take on the Buffalo Bills (1:00pm, Sunday). I don’t know what to make of either team. Are the Bills really that good? Is the Raiders d-line and linebacker support really that stout?? Guess we’ll find out Sunday. Incidentally – this might be the first game I travel to see at the Bills stadium since the 90s. I detest those fans – undoubtedly some of the worst in the league. And if you’re a non-Bills fan and have been – you know why. They’re insane, drunken arseholes – and I hear terrible stories yearly from there…
  • Speaking of the Bills – 92 year-old owner Ralph Wilson will miss his first home opener for the team in it’s 52 years of existence. He’s recovering from a broken hip suffered in June.
  • Shout-out to my fellow alum, fellow blogger (check her and her partners’ contributions to the blogisphere at http://witchesbrewonline.com) and overall sweetie Yolanda for the picture below:

Um - Floyd? What exactly do you and Mr. Ortiz have going on that we don't know about??

Er…this is Floyd’s first fight in almost 2 years. Both he and opponent Victor Ortiz are confident, and the sport of boxing is looking forward to it (Saturday night, PPV). But I’ve watched a lot of boxing, a lot of press conferences – even once argued face-to-face with boxing authority Bert Sugar (we actually had to be told to calm down as we were in a fancy dinner and arguing if Muhammad Ali was actually “The Greatest”)…

I’ve never seen something like this.  I mean – I don’t even know what to say about this. Other than to reference Riley Freeman on “The Boondocks” and leave it at that for comedic purposes (and if you don’t know what I mean by that, sorry – I can’t explain. It’s offensive to some, but a comedic narrative throughout the series).WTF, man.

  • I don’t know about you guys – but I kind of think Mariano Rivera’s 600th save was severely underplayed in the media this week. Oh, it was referenced – but 600 saves?? He’s 2 away from the all-time lead. And he plays for the Yankees, possibly the greatest franchise in all of sports. How is that not a bigger deal???
  • The man formerly known as Ron Artest is now officially Metta World Peace. Which I think is awesome. Even more awesome – his daughter Diamond wants to change her last name to his – which would make her Diamond World Peace. How sweet is that?? People – it’s Metta’s World, and we just live in it. Give Peace a chance (see what I did there?)…
  • The NBA Lockout will prevent at least half a NBA season. And you can blame the owners. Carry on.
  • I’ve got more drama in one of my fantasy football leagues than in the real rec one I play in every weekend. Smh…
  • Told you nothing would happen to Sir Rena Williams
  • If I lived in Washington, DC – I’m pretty sure I’d be a Washington Nationals season ticket holder. Just to watch Stephen Strasburg.
  • The new owner of The Buffalo Sabres, along with players on the team, hand-delivered season tickets to fans this week.  I’ve never heard of such a thing (an awesome thing, at that). Terry Pegula has spent an unbelievable amount of money improving the arena, the ice, the team – and has connected with the community to improve both the team and the relationship with the fans. I used to think Mark Cuban was the most awesome owner in sports – but this guy makes him look like an uncaring cheapskate comparatively (which he isn’t, by the way). The things he’s doing – I wish they could be used as the template for all team owners in all sports. I’d seriously like to meet the guy and shake his hand.
  • Tiki Barber and Terrell Owens still aren’t on any teams. Thank goodness.

That’s all I’ve got for today. Enjoy your sports weekend, people – and spread the word!! Subscribe to the blog today for e-mail updates when new posts go up.