I’d like to start today’s post with an apology to Anthony “Booger” MacFarland.
For a number of years now, I’ve labeled you both lazy and overrated. I stopped short of calling you a “bust” because you've been a moderately productive player since you joined the Buccaneer franchise. Truth be told, I DID think you were a bust and used you as a source of constant mockery as I watched the post-Super Bowl Bucs. While you will probably never be the game changing defensive tackle that Warren Sapp was in his prime (and that you were billed to be), you are a very good player and the anchor of an underrated defensive line on one of the NFL’s best defenses. You are not one of the top 2 or 3 tackles in the NFL, but most certainly fall within the top 10 of this category. I am appreciative of your efforts and value your contributions to the Tampa Bay franchise. Please except my apologies for all the digs at your game (and name) over the years.
As you might have guessed, today’s post will be the usual random collection of thoughts from this past weekend. I’ve got nothing to add beyond what you’re getting below.
- While I’m in the apologizing mood, I might as well address Sean Dockery. Actually, I don’t feel any need to apologize to young Mr. Dockery for anything said in this space. I will say this:
Congratulations on a miraculous shot that saved your team from an extremely embarrassing loss (at home). However, you are still a below average point guard with little to no discernibly outstanding skills. I hope you enjoyed last night because it’s never going to get better for you as a basketball player. Enjoy your senior season and buy yourself a pocket sized Russian-to-English dictionary, you’ll need it soon.
- Can we all agree to start calling Frank Beamer “Mr. September”? Is there another Head Coach out there who manages to have his program in the Top 10 every August/September only to consistently blow it down the stretch? It’s staggering to look at the numbers during the last 10 years. Other than the Michael Vick led team that played FSU in the Sugar Bowl, there hasn’t been a single Hokie team in the past decade to finish the season with the flurry of wins that most fans normally associate with a program that is well coached and headed in the right direction. It may be time to examine just how good a coach 'ole leather neck is. Yes, yes, we all know how great a job he does with his special teams and how they are near the top of the nation in punts blocked and we’re all very proud of his work in the area. The fact remains that truly good (or great) coaches get their teams to make progress throughout the year and peak near it’s conclusion, something that Beamer has not shown the propensity to do. Oh yeah, I missed a lot of that game so humor me here, but was it a (gasp) huge special teams play that changed the momentum of Saturday’s ACC Championship game or did I just dream that?
- As a result of Virginia Tech choking on Frank Beamer’s plastic skin, college football fans will now be forced to watch, not one, but two awful BCS Bowl games. Which brings up this point: If the BCS is going to allow the Big East to have a spot in the BCS, and if we are going to rely on Conference Championship games to determine the BCS participants, then can we please construct a clause within the BCS formula that allows for two “undeserving” teams to be forced to play each other in a BCS Bowl game? Would that really be that hard to draw up? The clause would go something like this, “If two conference champions with 4 losses (or who reside outside of the Top 20) both make the BCS in the same year, all bowl tie-ins will be rendered moot. Thus allowing for both of these teams to face off against one another in a committee determined BCS Bowl game.”
In the case of this year, the fans would get a West Virginia-FSU matchup and a Georgia-Penn State matchup instead of the current blowout inducing format. The only stumbling block to an idea of this nature would be the objections of the bowl that got stuck with the mediocre team crapfest that would potentially result from an FSU-WVU matchup. In this case, all the BCS officials would have to do is threaten to kick said bowl out of the BCS for good (or pay them a large sum of money for their collective troubles). At this point, I’m pretty sure that Orange Bowl officials (or whatever the unlucky bowl ended up being) would decide its in their best interest to shut up and take their medicine.
My point: If you’re going to make college football fans deal with the joke that is the BCS, then at least make an effort to give us the most attractive matchups possible. It’s really not that hard, it’s just requires a little critical thinking.
- I’m really dragging ass today and I’d like to personally thank Reggie Bush. I got up early on Saturday and had a Xmas party to attend on Saturday night, so I figured I’d catch a quick nap on the couch during Saturday afternoon. Well, by the time that I tried to take a nap, the UCLA-USC game had begun. Despite wanting to watch the game, I went ahead with the aforementioned nap plans. It nearly worked. I say nearly, because every single time that I was beginning to drift into unconsciousness Reggie Bush would break a run that caused Dan Fouts and Keith Jackson to jizz all over themselves in excitement. Upon hearing these two giggle like a couple of fifth grade girls passing notes, I would invariably roll over to see what I had missed. This happened at least five times in the first quarter and a half. The final time being Bush’s 65 yard run on third-and-ten from the USC 3 yard line. I was so close to passing out that when I rolled over to watch the replay, I immediately felt rejuvenated and was therefore unable to take the nap that I so sorely needed. Surprisingly, I wasn’t even bitter about this. I am, however, planning on sending the bill for the Red Bull I purchased later that evening to the football offices at USC, attention Reggie Bush.
- One benefit to my lack of nap was that I got to watch most of the Oklahoma-Villanova basketball game. As good as ‘Nova is, I didn’t think that they had a chance against a big, physical Sooner team. Man, was I wrong. Villanova played very well and totally wore down Oklahoma in the second half behind a brilliant game from Randy Foye, among others (Kyle Lowry and Allan Ray were pretty good too). As somebody who exclusively played guard during his playing days, I may be biased, but there isn’t a more enjoyable team to watch in college basketball today than Villanova.
- The Dodgers gave Rafael Furcal $39 million over 3 years? How is nobody else dumbfounded by this? I realize that $13 million a year isn’t an astronomical wage in Major League Baseball these days but, are you kidding me? $13 million a year for a 28 year old (at least) shortstop with career averages of .284, 11 HRs and 58 RBIs? That isn’t the least bit exorbitant to anyone?
- Ronde Barber, if you weren’t a man, well…I’d kiss you on the mouth. That was one hell of a display of defense when your team needed it most. If you could do that next week against Carolina, then that would be great, ummkay? Seriously, dude…you’re awesome.
- Finally, I know that most of you could care less about the recruiting efforts of the Florida Gator football program, but I do care about it so I’m going to continue to update this space with news that I consider to be especially important to those efforts. Late last week, the Gators gained a commit from the #2 rated linebacker in the nation, who also happens to be a JUCO transfer (can anybody say instant impact?). His name is Larry Grant and I’m already getting giddy imagining him and Brandon Siler dominating opposing ball carriers. If he pans out, then I’ll finally be able to get over the sting of losing Lance Mitchell (due to UF admissions standards) to Oklahoma a couple of years back. I’ve got a good feeling about this guy, and I base that feeling on…absolutely nothing.