I apologize for my recent hiatus from the blogging world. Over the past week and a half I had the pleasure of serving on the Orange Bowl Junior Host Committee. In this position, I had the opportunity to stay with the Stanford Football Team at the luxurious Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami and enjoy a week full of festivities and hard work with the team, their families, the coaches, and illustrious alumni. It was truly a phenomenal experience and something that I will not soon forget.
Boy has the sporting world been busy over these past couple of days though. Here are my thoughts on some of the major headlines taking the sporting world by storm.
It was fun while it lasted Rich..
-Okay that is a false statement. It was not fun while it lasted. Rich Rodriguez had one of the most tumultuous and lackluster tenures ever in the history of the storied program out of Ann Arbor. Coach Rodriguez, after a highly successful stay in Morgantown brought his talents to Michigan 3 years ago. Boy did things go downhill from there. Rich went a combined 15 and 22 during his time on the Wolverine sidelines, sporting a record of 6 and 18 in Big Ten play. The most eye-popping statistic of all is that he went just 11 and 11 at home, in the “Big House.” How is this possible to go just 500 playing in a stadium that seats over 112,000 people? In my eyes, there is no excuse to go just 500 leading arguably College Football’s most storied program in front of over 112,000 screaming fans on Saturdays. So who will be the next man to take over this once coveted position? Could it be Jim Harbaugh? Could it be Les Miles? Who knows. All I do know is that whomver the next coach is better win more games than they lose at the Big House. Or they will be leaving the House in a hurry.
Buckeye Troublemakers escape in NOLA
-Generally Bourbon Street is not the best place to go when you have a team that is full of guys that have broken the rules and have an uneasy future. Surprisingly though, for Ohio State, Bourbon Street provided just the medicine that their “Bad Boys” were looking for. All 5 of the “troublemakers” contributed significantly to Ohio State’s first ever win versus an SEC opponent in a Bowl Game. Now I know many of you out there are thinking that none of the 5 guys who broke the rules should have been suited up for this one. And I fully agree with you. But I will state that the 5 game suspension for next year is unreasonable and should most definitely be reduced. I understand that these guys broke the rules, but I feel that what they did in no way garners a 5 game suspension. Believe me, Arkansas was happy that the 5 Ohio State stars were not suspended for this Sugar Bowl duel. They wanted to take on a Ohio State team at full strength. Mallett and the Razorbacks nearly pulled off an improbable comeback too. The main storyline from this game in my eyes other than the Buckeyes saving face for the Big Ten, in what has been a horrific Bowl Season, should be Jim Tressel’s conservativeness. The man with the sweater vest is the most conservative coach I have ever watched. And I understand that he is a football genius and has won a lot of ballgames while on the sidelines in Buckeye Nation. But his lack of imagination and “play not to lose” mentality is sickening. I in a way wish Arkansas would have completed the comeback in this game. It would have demonstrated how ridiculous Tressel’s boring and risk free play truly is. The first step in loosening up Coach Tressel could be altering his wardrobe. It would be a start.
Wild Wild West?
-Mark Cuban is making headlines again. This time though, it is not for jawing at the refs or working to bring a playoff system to College Football. On this occasion, it pertains to a war of words with current Los Angeles Laker’s Head Coach Phil Jackson. The Dallas Mavericks just took a heavy blow to their roster in losing Caron Butler for an extended period of time due to a knee injury. Butler is the Maverick’s third leading scoring at 15 points a game, and a real spark plug for Dallas on both ends of the floor. Phil Jackson when asked about the subject said that the loss of Butler could be a devastating loss for the Mavericks. Cuban responded calling Jackson Jeanie Buss’ “Boy Toy.” Who doesn’t love a war of words between two of the biggest names that are not players the League has to offer? So it is a bit childish. Either way it makes for some entertainment. Could this lead to a heated rivalry between Dallas and LA? We will have to wait and see. In the meantime, Jackson has work to do with his LA squad. Though they are in first place sitting at 24 and 11, they recently suffered a 3 game losing streak at the end of December, and then began the new year with an embarrassing loss to Memphis. I smell playoff drama come April/May.
-The Bengals decided to rehire their head coach of the past 8 years, Marvin Lewis. I will state that I feel this is a poor decision not only for the Bengals, but for Coach Lewis as well. This team has never developed a consistency level or gotten over the hump. 0 playoff wins in 8 years means no job in my eyes. Now sure, Marvin has taken the woeful Who Deys to 2 AFC North Titles in 8 years, which is highly impressive for a franchise that had not participated in postseason ball in 15 years. But the NFL is a what have you done for me lately League. And what he has done lately has not been impressive. A 4 and 12 mark with a team that featured the talent and depth that Cincy had this year is unacceptable. I also realize that not all the blame should be pinned on Coach Lewis. But in the NFL, regardless of if it is the Coach’s fault or not, they are normally the first guy to exit when a team is not winning. When I look at things from Marvin’s perspective. I do not understand why he would return. Maybe he saw no other jobs out there that were of interest to him (though there are plenty of jobs on the market)? Mike Brown will never let him have the control that he, and any other coach in the NFL desires. Until Mike Brown goes, no Coach will ever see sustained success in Cincinnati. So I guess as a Bengal’s fan, whether Marvin is on the sideline or not does not make a major difference.
There are my thoughts on some of the major topics going on in the sporting world today. I am also game to talk about Roberto Alomar and Bert Blyleven being voted into the Hall of Fame and the Jim Harbaugh sweepstakes. Shoot me an email with your thoughts and questions at firstname.lastname@example.org or post a comment below.
Stay tuned for the next edition of TheSportsKraze.