Sunday, November 21, 2004
I'm not mad or anything, honest. Hee hee. They never should have given me Photoshop.
As you may or may not have guessed from this, Michigan is going to the Rose Bowl for the 18th time (the most of any Big 10 school). Yes, we lost to Ohio State, but Iowa did the world a favor and beat Wisconsin, so we share the Big 10 title with the Hawkeyes and were rocketed into bowl glory despite the loss. The Buckeyes don't even matter, in the end. Yes, it would have been nice to beat them, especially in their own sordid, scandal-ridden horsesshoe stadium, but who cares? We beat Michigan State. We're going to the Rose Bowl. We have the senior standout Braylon Edwards, and the freshman phenoms Hart and Henne. We are the Maize and Blue, the Michigan f-ing Wolverines.
We all remember what happened in the Rose Bowl last year, but that doesn't matter either. Just getting to the bowl will suffice.
I think we all owe the Black an' Yellow a very, very serious 'thank you' for knocking off the Badgers. If they hadn't sent Wisconsin packing, their stripey red behinds would be heading to the Rose Bowl instead of our much more pleasantly clad shiny yellow ones. Iowa, you guys rock. Although if I had to hear one more announcer comparing Drew Tate (the Hawkeye quarterback, a little guy listed at 6 feet and change but probably shorter than that) to Doug Flutie, I might have broken something expensive.
It looks like we're slated to play Cal in Pasedena. I don't know much of anything about the team, although I will doubtless pick something up between now and New Year's Day.
Utah, America's Cinderalla Team of the Season, beat their arch enemies from BYU (the Mormon Wonders! I kid, they're actually the Cougars) tonight to finish their perfect 11-0 season and secure themselves a spot in the BCS standings. Everyone is all a-flutter, because it would be the first time that a non-BCS conference team would play in a BCS bowl, but Utah is just that good. Congrats to those guys, they definitely deserve it. I do not believe, like the announcers did, that this was 'comparable to the Red Sox winning the World Series', but it's a very big deal in college-football-land, and it's a big deal in Utah. Good luck in your bowl game, Utes. It's probably going to be the Fiesta Bowl, and it might be against BC without their starting quarterback, so you could have some mighty good times ahead.
I still don't understand how Boise State can be 11-0 and be ranked below a bunch of teams. It's either because their schedule was pretty weak or because their field is that eye-twisting shade of blue (I believe it's the only field in college football that is not actually green). Regardless, they had a heck of a season too.
The Florida Gators just upset Florida State. Ron Zook, the sitting-duck coach who was coaching his last game for the Gators, got grabbed by two of his players who settled him onto their padded shoulders and carried him onto the field. In the postgame interview his eyes were redrimmed and his voice hoarse. It's the first time in 17 years that Florida has beaten FSU at FSU. Just throwing this all out there.
Yes, I saw the Pistons/Pacers brawl. I couldn't care less about basketball, and normally wouldn't even bother to watch the game, but the Pistons are huge out here, and some of my hallmates roped me into watching the game with them. It was, for lack of a better word, disgusting.
For those who have not seen the footage, this is what happened: Ben Wallace (Pistons) went up for a basket and was fouled from behind by Ron Artest (Pacers). It was a pretty hard foul, but not unreasonably hard. Big Ben was already upset because the Pistons were losing at home, the Pacers were acting like they had won with 45 seconds still on the clock, and he overreacted to the foul by shoving Artest in the face. The two went at it, other players and staff members hurried up to restrain them, etc.
After a few minutes it looked like the whole thing had been brought under control. Wallace was being more or less restrained, and Artest was lying down on the scorer's table, attempting to ignore everything and cool down. Suddenly a cup full of liquid came flying out of the stands and hit Artest on the head. Artest went absolutely nuts, rolled off the table and jumped into the stands, charging up to where he thought the cup came from and decking a fan (video evidence later showed that he actually went after the wrong guy). Another Pacer, Jackson, jumped up into the stands to defend Artest and attack some other violent fans.
The whole thing just got worse from there. Fans were throwing punches, players were throwing punches, players were trying to get other players out of the stands, fans got onto the court and started punching people, utter chaos. When the Pacers finally started getting shunted off the court and into the lockerrooms, the fans threw beer, soda, and popcorn on them as they went into the tunnel. At one point the video showed a woman holding a full soda bottle, deliberating, then hurling it down onto the players.
Suspensions have been issued for Ron Artest, Stephen Jackson, and Jermaine O'Neal of the Pacers and Ben Wallace of the Pistons.
It was shameful for both teams, and extremely shameful for the Detroit fans. Way to go, Detroit. Way to convince the rest of the nation that they're totally right when they consider you the crappiest, most riot-prone city in the US.
This isn't why I don't like basketball, but it sure doesn't make me want to watch it.
Wild and exciting things are happening in the field of fan football commentary. Well, not really. See, All-baseball.com does this thing where they have fans of different baseball teams hold email exchanges during baseball season. They ask each other questions, have discussions, whatever. It's usually pretty interesting and educational for all.
The thinking was, why not do this with football? And with ladies? That should be awesome, right?
Yes. Yes, it is awesome.
The ladies are: your very own Feline Anarchist, going by my sports blogging name- Boston Fan in Michigan. I'm mostly providing the Lions fan perspective for the purposes of this thing, although we're all talking about all teams. I also will probably throw in college football references, just because every chance I get to laud my Michigan Wolverines is a chance I will leap upon and utterly smother.
Meredith of Sass-a-thon, a Philadelphia Eagles fan who lives in Texas and is a Red Sox fan (we all 'know' each other through the Red Sox blogosphere. Yes, there is a Red Sox blogosphere. And just when you thought things on here couldn't possibly get any geekier). She's smart and funny and likes TO, but then again we all have our little quirks at the end of the day.
Beth of Cursed to First, the tried-and-true Boston fan who provides the main Patriots commentary. Her writing makes me get all teary-eyed, because never shall my humble prose rise to that vaunted level. She's also sort of running this entire debacle, and it was her idea in the first place.
Anyways, the first installment is up! It's good stuff. You should go read it right this very moment. Football. Girls. Girls talking about football. I know this is wild and exciting stuff for some of you, so head on over. Click the banner. Designed, incidentally, by yours truly.
Just because I spent so much time thinking about this, I'm going to repost part of it in here. One of the questions for this installment was to name who you thought was going to the playoffs. I don't think I have any surprises here, but it'll be interesting to see how many I get right.
Feline Anarchist Playoff Predictions! Complete with snide commentary. Enjoy.
*AFC East: Patriots. The Pats would have won it in any event, but the Jets would have made it interesting with Chad Pennington. Without him they're in trouble.
*AFC North: Steelers. Cincy could make a run, but not enough to knock off Pitt. Baltimore can't win with only defense. This might be the division with the worst uniforms... the hideously overstriped Bengals, the black leggings of the Ravens, the overall color scheme of the unfortunate Browns. The Steelers deserve to win it because of that, if nothing else.
*AFC South: Colts. They're tied with the Jaguars right now, but you have to believe that Indy will pull ahead even with a defense that's flimsier than A-Rod's protestations of heterosexuality. If you could merge the Indy offense with the Baltimore defense the world would be agape at the sight of the resulting team. But the Patriots would still beat them.
*AFC West: Chargers. I just don't see the Broncos outplaying them, if only because the Chargers seem to have good momentum right now (they've won three in a row). If they continue wearing those powder-blue uniforms I just might join the rest of America and get on the Drew Brees bandwagon.
*AFC Wildcard: Toss-up. I'm going to go for the upset and say Bengals, even though Chad Johnson is a TO-wannabe. Jaguars are going to have trouble with Leftwich out. I had the Ravens at first, but I just looked at their upcoming schedule and they have New England, Pittsburgh, and Indy ON THE ROAD. Look for the Ravens to crash and burn in the upcoming weeks.
*NFC East: Eagles. Barring a major breakdown of team dynamics they're not going to be caught in that division.
*NFC North: Packers. This is the most exciting division in football, and I'm not just saying that because the Lions are in it. The Packers and Vikings are 5-4, while the Lions and Bears are 4-5. The phrase 'on any given Sunday' was made for these guys. With Randy Moss out, I say Favre leads the Packers to the top of it. You can never count the Bears out, though, especially as they're on a 3-game winning streak right now.
*NFC South: Falcons. Michael Vick is overrated, but being 7-2 in a relatively crappy division is not.
*NFC West: Cardinals. I just have a feeling about the Cardinals. If you're not from Arizona, can you name anyone on the Cardinals? Yet they're 4-5 and have won their last 2. It's perfectly possible that Hasselbeck is washed up for the season anyways, and the Rams I object to on principle because they signed Jeff Fucking Smoker, former Michigan State quarterback, and proof that State really is a school full of the drug-addicted back-town dregs of humanity.
*NFC Wildcard: Lions. Uh. Because. RESTORE THE ROAR! If not the Lions, maybe the Bears. I always have this nagging sense about the Bears. This weird, sort of upwelling thing, like they're always just about to cut loose and unleash their fury upon the NFL, but not quite yet. Most people call this constipation, but I call it a feeling that the Bears might still be in the playoffs race.
Thems the picks. Seriously, go read the rest of it, it's good stuff. I'm honored to be able to write in the same arena as these sports-savvy, word-wise women. Hopefully my linguistic butchery won't bring down the tone too much :).
I definitely didn't notice that Helene had posted this. But there's a happy Red Sox conversation up here. Ha ha. Excellent.
Not much Sox news going around. There's a guy on SoSH who says that the Sox added some of their big minor league prospects to their 40-man roster (Juan Cedeno, Manny Delcarmen, Luis Mendoza, Hanley Ramirez, Anibal Sanchez, Kelly Shoppach, and Chris Smith, in case you follow the Boston minors and know who these guys are). I haven't seen much confirmation of this, but it's interesting if true. Shoppach is the catcher we've been grooming, and Ramirez is the shortstop we've been bringing along, so this could have some minor impact on the Varitek and Cabrera situations. We could be preparing ourselves for the possibility that these guys won't be back. I hope they will be, but we'll see.
Carl Pavano did visit with the Sox and Curt Schilling. I guess no solid contracts were discussed, but Pavano was supposedly favorably impressed by the whole thing.
If we manage to pry one of the Big 3 out of Oakland, I'd want it to be Tim Hudson. I don't like Barry Zito. Hudson seems like he'd be a good fit, though. I guess it's pretty unlikely that we'll get him, but one never knows.
I don't want Randy Johnson on the Yankees. I don't care how old he is, the guy's inhuman. He's like a machine. I'm convinced that normal pitcher age restrictions just don't apply to him.
Still sick. Urgh. I cleaned my room today, since it was definitely looking like a paper-eating monster had vomited all over the place (an analogy that Pam called 'completely gross', but it suited the state of the place). I finally hung up all those Red Sox newspapers, I put some new stuff up on my door, I put the triangles back where they couldn't jab anyone in the foot, I threw out several pounds of miscellaneous stuff. It does make me feel a little better to not be living in a complete pigsty anymore, but in the end I'm still hacking and wheezing.
I guess that's mostly it until the football orgy tomorrow. It looks like Lions/Vikings at 1 (someone... please... kill me now), some game or other at 4 (I'm not sure which ones we'll be getting out here), Packers/Texans at 8:30 (is it really asking too much for both the Vikings and the Packers to lose tomorrow?), and Patriots/Chiefs for Monday Night Football. I'm very happy about all the Monday Night Football slots that the Pats are getting, because I wouldn't get to see them much otherwise.
Thanksgiving is coming up, and we all know what that means. It means I don't have lab on Tuesday, which is such a big relief that there are no words for it. It means that I head out to Southfield and the Land of Real Food on Wednesday. It means that I GET TO GO TO FORD FIELD AND A REAL FRIKKING FOOTBALL GAME ON THURSDAY. Yeah, Turkey Day football in Detroit never fails to get me riled up. I know we're playing the Colts. I know I should prepare myself to be disappointed. But hey, last year Green Bay didn't suck and we beat them on Thanksgiving. Anything could happen.
If you'll excuse me, I'm going to go stroke my Joey Harrington jersey in rabid anticipation until Nate walks in and freaks out on me. Again. Hey, the first time I was just squeegeeing rubber cements balls off of a foamcore cube, it really didn't warrant his startled reaction.