Remember Scott Wiese? That really cool Chicago Bears fan who lost a bet and had to change his name to Peyton Manning after the Super Bowl? Well, seems like he found a loop hole. Sort of: A judge denied his bid Monday, squashing any hopes fears he had of bearing the MVP’s name.
Wiese and lawyer-friend Andy Bourey appeared before the judge who, as Bourey puts it, “had to…see if the reason he was changing his name was outweighed by the consequences of what he was changing his name too.” Apparently Wiese’s reasoning wasn’t strong enough to overcome the power of Peyton Manning. He will not be appealing the decision.
But, gosh, those judges and their senses of humor! Monday morning a bunch of them showed up at a meeting with Peyton Manning masks and left behind a football and a Chicago Bears hat in the courtroom. See? Judges do know how to have a good time!
When I first started read about last Wednesday’s “plot to fire poison darts at horses” at Happy Valley racecourse in Hong Kong, I’m not gonna lie, I spent a good five minutes trying to figure out how men would pull off blowing a dart through a long tube from the stands and then retreating unnoticed. Boy do I ever feel silly:
Though still considered “unwanted and weird” by Hong Kong’s Olympic equestrian chief, these poison darts were buried in the ground at the starting gates in a remote controlled device that included 12 1-foot long tubes. China’s criminal gambling syndicates have thought of everything.
But fret not, Hong Kong equestrian aficionados, as police and organizers had “stringent arrangements” already in place for the 2008 Olympics. It just would have been nice if they had been more stringent before Tuesday, is all.
We’re going to play a game tonight here at TSINB, it’s called “Who Looks Worse?” Here’s how it works: I give you an athlete’s name followed by the athlete’s statement. I will then provide the institutions the athlete has represented at various points in his or her life. You then decide which institution fairs the worst from the statement. Tonight’s contestant is Oregon Ducks point guard Tajuan Porter. (Note: These are actual statements by actual people. The words and phrases you read here have not been changed to protect anyone’s identity or self-respect)
Porter hails from Detroit Renaissance High School, from where he followed current Oregon teammate Malik Hairston. Before Hairston, Porter had no idea where the University of Oregon was. Exactly how clueless was he?
“I didn’t even know Oregon was a state.”
For crying out loud, I never paid attention in school and not only did I know it was a state, I knew it was somewhere kind of in the middle. Not Porter, though. Not until Hairston became a Duck after Porter’s sophomore year.
So, who looks worse: Detroit Renaissance High School for failing to educate its students at a fourth grade level? Or the University of Oregon for its almost non-existent enrollment requirements for incoming athletes? You decide.
Major League Baseball executives haven’t exactly been popular lately, what with whole not wanting anyone to watch issue. But now they've had enough of those needy kids with cancer.
Astros second baseman Craig Biggio has been the spokesman for The Sunshine Foundation - a foundation that helps children with cancer - for the past 20 years. For those same 20 years, Biggio has worn the yellow, sun-shaped pin on his hat during spring training games when baseball card photos are taken. “It puts smiles on 20,000-something kids’ faces,” when they see the pin on the cards. Well, the madness stops now, Craig.
Someone in the commissioner’s office, Biggio doesn’t know who, contacted the Astros and told them he could no longer wear the pin. Umpires even inspected his hat before Thursday night’s 16-2 loss to the Nationals.
I'm sure the commissioner’s office has a good reason, but…actually, no. I don’t think any reason they could give is good enough to justify this decision.
As part of my ridiculously important* yet severely underpaid 9-to-5 job I produce radio interviews. In essence, I’m the liaison between a guest and a bunch of radio stations with which he or she is interviewing. During downtime between interviews I often get to bullshit with the said guest if he or she is in the mood to chat. This morning was special. I got to work with Michael Clarke Duncan (you may know him from such movies as The Green Mile and Ricky Bobby). Very quickly: He is, hands down, one of the nicest people walking this earth and deserves any success that he has and will encounter.
He also happens to be bff-like with Dallas Mavericks owner and famed blogger Mark Cuban, a fact which revealed itself in an interview with a station in Dallas. It seems that Duncan has laid a bet on the table for our little Cuban. The terms: If Dallas wins the NBA Championship Duncan will fly himself to Dallas and be the team’s towel boy for 15 games next season. If Dallas fails to claim the title (again) Duncan gets to use Cuban’s private jet twice next year to fly to any destination of his choosing (note: Europe’s high on his list).
Once off the air I talked with Duncan about his friendship with Cuban, how Cuban was a “geek in college,” and how Duncan, a Cubs fan, would love for Cuban to take over in Chicago. And then I asked about the bet. Was this actually happening? Duncan said that he was 100% serious, but that Cuban wanted to wait until the playoffs before committing to anything.
I would have expected Cuban to accept the bet immediately. First of all, the simple fact of owning a private jet negates any financial concerns he may have over it. Second, this stuff happens all the time between mayors of cities, et cetera, who like to rally up the troops and the home town hooplah. Third, the attention surrounding the bet seems, to me at least, right up Cuban’s ally. And finally, what would his not accepting the bet say about his confidence in his team? All-in-all, I don’t see why Cuban wouldn’t take up the offer.
I would love to see this happen, if only to see the 6’5 Duncan who appears monstrous on screen to be dwarfed by some of these NBA players along the sidelines. Honestly, if Donald Trump can offer up his hair, can’t Cuban offer up his jet?
The only experience I have as an official is from umping the 3rd and 4th grade softball games back when I was in high school, and I only did that because the head umpire was my brother's girlfriend at the time (If I knew then what I know now...). So I'm not really one to offer up my opinion on what can only be an incredibly stressful job. For crying out loud, I couldn't handle a 9-year-old giving me a dirty look when I'd call her out at the plate. But then finished watching Memphis -Texas A&M a few minutes ago.
Will someone please explain to me how those refs justified taking off 1.1 seconds when that ball was grazed as it went out of bounds. I'm going to bed now.
I realize we’re coming down to the wire (within 20 minutes to game time, I believe), but to be completely honest, I was hesitant to write a follow up on my Secretary V. Official Bracket Challenge. I didn’t know how to feel when I looked over the results after the first two rounds. Flat out, I didn’t know who I’d rather disappoint: mom or dad. But, for the love of my loyal reader(s?), I will be true to my word and follow up as we wait for the Sweet 16 to kick off tonight.
I am pained to say that my hope for my Secretary Bracket is all but dead. We’re not talking something as simple as a coma here. We’re looking at minimal brainwaves. First and foremost I would like to extend a hand of gratitude to Mr. Kevin “I wish I tried Harder” Durant as Texas bowed out to OJ Mayo-recruit USC. I will say that, though I was lukewarm on Durant leading the Longhorns to a Championship, I truly believed the Elite 8 was a possibility. May your orange rest in peace, Durant, whether or not your parents decide on the NBA for you.
That being said, my Final Four of the Secretary Bracket looked like this:
You’re not reading that incorrectly. I have one team left in the Final Four, with Texas originally facing off against Wisconsin for the Championship.
Mom, I’m sorry. Just one more disappointment to add to the list.
But, Dad, you’d be proud of your little girl!
My Sweet 16 is looking pretty sweet indeed (in fact, probably better than my Dad’s) Though I had Maryland instead of Butler, Wisconsin over UNLV and Texas over UNC, I’ve still got three of my Final Four in place:
With my Secretary Bracket belly-up, I’m focusing most of my energy on my Official Bracket. This round’s match up that’ll be watched with a bottle of Jack at my side: Ohio State and Tennessee. Bruce Pearl and his band of misfits scare me a bit, having lost to Ohio by only 2 points earlier this season and forcing 20 turnovers. On the other side, Thad Matta’s currently going through his pregame rituals that seem to have helped Ohio thus far.
Regardless, I apologize to my mother, brag to my father, let the memory of Texas fade away and pray for Ohio State to come away with this one. I need the money for my new spring wardrobe.
It happened just like my mom said it would: it's all downhill after that first tattoo.
Tony La Russa was arrested in Florida early Thursday morning for suspicion of drunk driving. The 62-year-old Cardinals manager was found asleep in his running car at a stop light when police found him. The undercover cops saw La Russa’s vehicle sit in an intersection around midnight despite several green lights. When La Russa, who had the vehicle in drive with his foot on the brake, finally woke up to the knocking on the window, they had him step out of the car and give two breath samples. After blowing a 0.093 (legal limit: 0.08) he was arrested and booked in Palm Beach County jail for the misdemeanor.
I, for one, would have given La Russa the benefit of the doubt. I mean, my grandfather can fall asleep anywhere. Standing up, even. But I guess cops in Florida deal with old people enough to discern the difference. I wonder if they get additional training for just such a circumstance.
All I know about the Iditarod is that it’s 1,100 miles over ice and snow, just you and your dogs. The rest of the details I’ve always assumed.
For example: I always believed a musher and his team developed some kind of special bond, something like Paul Walker had with his dogs in Eight Below (Note: I went to imdb.com and scrolled over the quotes section. Final quote on the list? Maya: “Arf arf arf arf!” That script practically wrote itself, huh?). I couldn’t have been farther from the truth.
Ramy Brooks, two-time runner-up in the Iditarod was disqualified from this year’s race after witnesses saw him abusing his dogs, one of which died on the trail the next day (Inconclusive results - are there any other kind? - indicate that the incidents weren’t related). Apparently, with only 90 miles to go, Brooks was seen hitting each of his 10 dogs with a trail marking lathe (like a surveyor’s stake) because two of them wouldn’t get up and continue. Real animal lover, this guy.
Honestly, though, I’ve always kind of imagined this is how Bobby Knight motivates his teams.
True story: Every year my father joins one of many NCAA pools with his lifelong friends. Out of sheer enjoyment (to prove superiority) most of the men in the pool cough up and extra $40 to enter a bracket for their wives. Not my father. Oh sure, my mom can add her bracket to the mix – humor the little woman, after all – but he wasn’t about to throw away 40 of his hard-earned dollars. Frugality was key with my father, and my mother, I’ll attest, knows nothing about college basketball. But this was 1999, and she did know one thing: Kevin Freeman. At the time a junior forward for UConn, Freeman was a high school basketball teammate of my older brother. He’d been to the house, I was friends with his younger brother, my mother always said he was “a nice boy,” and for these reasons alone, UConn was going to take the title.
I remember that tournament well, particularly going home from college for a Madness party my parents were throwing. It was the weekend of the Elite 8 and my father all but swallowed his tongue as his brackets exploded. When the night was all said and done, John, the holder of all things tournament, filtered through the papers to calculate who was in the lead. You know where I’m headed with this.
My mother, knowing nothing save Kevin Freeman and a fine fashion sense, was the only person with her Final Four still in tact. She was also the sole person with UConn beating Duke for the Championship. Laugh as everyone did at the time, my mother went on to win that pool. And my father has entered money for her ever since.
So when I came across Pat Forde's column on ESPN.com earlier this week, I laughed, reminiscing, as I read his opening words: “It’s now time for those of us who have been living and dying with every dribble since November to look on in disgust as the office pools are won by secretaries who make their picks based on team colors.” And then I got to thinking (which is rare, so pay attention): How would I fair if I actually picked my brackets based solely on my favorite colors? I mean, if the secretaries win so often, as bitter fanatics seem to claim, why don’t I just toss all caution and confidence to the side and pick my favorite color to win? So, that’s exactly what I did. (Note: I had my Champion immediately: There is no way any color can beat out that Longhorn orange, I’m sorry, but it’s science.)
As I sat down to peruse the bracket for the first time, I cringed knowing that I was going to have to eliminate Florida in the first round. Honestly, I didn’t think anything could be worse than the blue-green-orange combo, and I was just hoping that things would even out down the road. But then I looked up Jackson State’s colors to find they look like blue and red dry erase markers. I’m pleased to say that Florida pulled off the first-round upset to advance.
Disciplining myself to base picks on colors was a chore at first, but after finding my stride I found myself getting irritated that I had to pick Southern Illinois over Holy Cross. I’m all for maroon (that color looks awesome on me), but their fucking mascot’s Falkor from The Neverending Story. Seriously. They advanced, though, so I’m okay with it so far.
To be all “scientific” about this, I knew I needed a control group or something or other, so to reference, and to hopefully win money, I filled out what I’m calling my “Official” bracket. I wanted to be able to compare my round-by-round color results with my actual knowledge-based picks. And after the first round, I have to say I’m not doing all that bad.
In my Official bracket I walked away pretty unscathed: I lost 7 picks, all of which I had exiting the second round anyway, so I’m still in pretty good shape (especially since my father and brother both had 6 losses after Thursday alone. I’m smrt, smart). In my Secretary bracket, 8 of my teams are out, a few of which could really hurt me. I’m banking on things evening out as we move along, but with this tournament, you never can be sure of anything.
So we have a few weeks to go before I can determine which is better: my basketball knowledge or my color palette. So stay tuned (and go Purdue!).
I’m not one for theatrics. I live with a former theater major and spent my early evening yesterday listening to her call potential company members about some theme park production called “Celebrity Fiesta” or something equally stupid. So I retreated to my computer (which I know sounds no less lame) to tune her out. What I found wasn’t much better.
Being a Duke fan ever since I was running around in my samba classics, I’ve developed calluses against the onslaught of anti-dukedom. So I spent most of my surfing time reading up on reactions to Thursday’s lone upset with a grain of salt. And then I came across Mike Freeman’s column on sportsline.com. His reverence for this VCU team is only ever so slightly outweighed by his disdain for Duke, easily noted when he finished with this: “Duke is no longer Duke. The old Duke is dead. The new Duke is just another team."
Honestly, I don’t mean to pick out Freeman since, you know, he’s the one with the paid writing gig (Mike, call me!), but come on. Dramatic, much? I’m all for relishing in the demise of a rival - it’s what fleshes out the sports experience – but, please people, let us keep some perspective.
VCU was aggressive and took more chances as most teams do in their position: they’ve got nothing to lose. Eric Maynor, no doubt, was playing the game of his career and held it together to sink the game winner with 1.8 seconds left. That is an experience that will never be lived down. But other than his “flair for dramatics in big games,” as Freeman points out (I had no idea he so up on his CAC games), I didn’t see any extra finesse from Virginia Commonwealth.
On the other side Duke’s play was sad, and that’s being nice. They missed 12 free throws (12! Their fourth loss of the season directly related to their inability to hit from the line. The others: Home against V-Tech they lost by 2, missed 10; home against Florida State they lost by 1, missed 7; and at Virginia lost by 2, missed 8). Add 17 turnovers and consider the decision to keep Jon Scheyer on Eric Maynor in the closing seconds instead of putting, say, DeMarcus Nelson on him (!!!!!), and all-in-all it was a bad end to a mediocre season. Every team has them.
Yes, it was the team’s worst season in a decade, but after that 1996 first round loss, the Blue Devil’s spent nine years in - at least - the Sweet 16. Dead? Really? I feel like I’m watching a baseball game with my mother who thinks the it’s all over after one outside pitch. Honestly, people, one shitty year does not a dynasty end. Save the dramatics.
Meanwhile, the Rams have yet to even shadow the impact that George Mason had last year, so please forgive me if I ask everyone to hold their applause until they earn a win against Pitt. The first round was so lame that everyone’s jumping on the one bandwagon available. Let’s all hope for a more exciting weekend, for everyone's sake.
Monday night the University of Nebraska-Kearney women’s basketball coach Carol Russell was on the bench as her team lost to the University of North Dakota. Not strange, she should be there. She’s the coach. Oh, but there is just one more thing, lieutenant: she had given birth to her first child five hours before. That’s right: when most women would still be packed with ice, she and her left her new baby boy in the hospital and headed to the game.
Now, I may have never given birth, but I’ve watched my share of A Baby Story on Lifetime and let me tell you, all that “it’s so natural and beautiful” crap? Horseshit. There are rips and tears involved that you don’t even want to imagine. Russell must have had one of those prom date births when the young girl doesn’t know she’s pregnant until the baby falls out on the dance floor or in the bathroom. That’s the only way I can explain this away.
All that aside, though, I don’t know what her big rush was. It was a women’s game in North Dakota – most popularly known as "that vast expanse of land above South Dakota" – the team lost 108-75, its spot in the tournament, and on top of all that, it’s the Division II tournament. Even if they got in it wouldn’t matter. No one gives a shit.
Being a volleyball player, I’ve had to deal with years of people, you know, not caring about my sport. It’s somewhat insulting but, quite frankly it’s helped mold me into the elitist that I am today. So this just kinda pisses me off:
Apparently, as the guys over at The Fanhouse have discovered, tennis – which has a very healthy fan base, mind you – is trying to take over the beach. How dare they! That’s like, our thing! How the hell else were we supposed to coerce interest? It was a matter of survival, people. And now you’re telling me we’re going to have call next game while we wait on a bunch of racket-toting ATP wannabes? Horseshit.
The beach is our place to shine, so back off, Buffy.
Alright, here’s the deal: On my list of “Things to do Before I Die” is making sure I see one Red Sox/Yankees game at Fenway and one at Yankee Stadium. Living in New York, I’ve gotten to see them play twice at the Stadium. Overall, it wasn’t as eventful as I expected it to be - I’m more than confident that it will be better in Boston (we’re still allowed to drink in our bleachers), but I have yet to experience it.
The closest I’ve come was in October 2004 when I got tossed an extra ticket to Fenway last minute for what was supposed to be game 3 of the ALCS. If you remember correctly, Brandon Arroyo was facing off against Pedro Martinez Bronson Arroyo was starting for us, but the game was postponed because of a monsoon, during which I was stuck at a rest stop on the Mass Pike for 2 hours waiting fo…nevermind, I’m clearly not over it yet. (When the game was played, Arroyo finished with a 27 ERA in all of two innings, giving up 6 runs. That was awesome.). With all that said, here is the reason for this post:
It seems that the Spain Train is at her antics again with the help of a local Chi-town bar. Now, I may not have a name to create a catchy moniker, but I don’t see why I can’t use *my* good looks and huge rack awesome personality to get myself into sporting events…it’s practically the American way. So that’s exactly what I’m going to do. I’m going to take a page out of Sarah Spain’s Manual for the D Lister and put myself out there for the getting. Or taking. Or whatever.
Please hear me out: I’m not going to auction myself off and make you pay me. I’ll let you take me for free! The Yankees are in Boston Friday-Sunday, April 21st-23rd. I can attend any one (or more?) of the three games, I can get myself to Boston, will have a place to stay, can afford my own concessions and even a few beers for you in a display of sincere gratitude. Now, if I already know you and you have a season package that includes one such series (I’m looking in your direction, Taylor), that would be ideal. But if I don’t know you and you’d like to go to a game with someone who isn’t completely unfortunate looking, just shoot me a message on myspace telling me why you would like to take me – for free, remember – and I’ll let you know if I pick you! Sound like a deal? I may not have Axe body spray behind me on this, but I’ll, like, buy you some or something.
If it’s fair for Sarah, can’t it be fair for me too, right?
I’ve never really considered the combination of hellish physical demands and sub freezing temperatures fun, but, hey, to each his own. Climbing Mt. Everest in shorts, however...well, such a person’s stupidity knows no bounds.
Meet Wim Hof, or “Iceman,” as he calls himself – which is far different from what I’m calling him in my head. Hof embarks on his trip up the mountain in only boots, shorts, gloves and a cap on April 1st and hopes to attempt the summit by May 16th.
Let’s set aside, you know, the fact that the trail is already littered with the bodies of failed attempts by people in ice-retardant clothing, and think about the simple fact that this man plans on spending at least *45 days* half naked on a mountain with actual “death zones.” Hasn’t he ever read Into the Wild? And that was only Alaska. Good luck, dude.
To all you Blue Devil haters out there, bow to the genius that is John Cornwell. The 2006 Duke engineering grad labored for over 150 hours – unpaid - to bring the comforts of college life into his real world. His mini-frigidaire is now a certified beer-tossing machine that can hold up to 10 Zimas beers at a time, with a tossing range of about 20 feet.
Are you hearing me? No longer will you have to peeling yourself out of your second-hand recliner when you want the Beast. All you’ll need is another remote control.
So, move over, this guy, because Cornwell’s in town, and he’s thirsty.
I have to go with the translation over at The Fanhouse because I don't speak Portuguese very well, as that is the language spoken in Brazil - NOT spanish - but according to the Brazilian site Glamurama.com.br, Tom Brady has much faster sperm than O.J. Simpson.
Gisele Bundchen is rumored to be no more than two months pregnant and may have told a few close friends and family members (In Portuguese that looks like this: “Bomba! Bomba! Bomba! Acaba de chegar ao Glamurama, por meio de um telefonema sigiloso, a notícia de que Gisele Bündchen poderia estar grávida,” which wreaks havoc on my spell check). If this is true, I’m sure it won’t cause any problems between the Golden QB’s other baby’s mama, BridgetMoynahan. She wins anyway because she was pregnant first, right?
Everyone wants to cast NBA players as thugs and trouble makers, but many of them are misunderstood, dare I say, even a bit compassionate.
Take Dallas’ Jason Terry, for example. When he fell into the stands for a loose ball during Tuesday’s 102-89 win over the Nets, he fell into an elderly woman. Rather than assault her like some others, he got a piece and probably made the lady's week. He went over to her later and apologized with a kiss on the cheek. See? Isn’t that sweet?
Back in 1994 during the filming of Naked Gun 33 1/3: The Final Insult, and just before all hell broke loose on CourtTV, Smith allegedly had a sip of the juice, if ya know what I’m sayin. Simpson’s also apparently a fan of the Bahamas - nudge, nudge, wink, wink.
Well, O.J. tells this Norm Pardo guy – who seems to be the Juice's personal videographer – who turns and tells Page Six that “[Simpson] knew Anna Nicole pretty well, and he said he had slow-moving sperm, and he might be the father.” Well that just discounts his claim right there, doesn’t it? I mean, there’s no way that a man who had such a successful career in running could have such slow-moving sperm. Regardless, I wouldn't put the possibility of sexual relations past either of them. I'd only question how timely Simpson's claim is. I mean, 13 years is some really slow sperm.
For my Sweet 16 I had a surprise party thrown for me which included food and festivities at my house after a raucous night of ice skating. No where in site was Peyton Manning, who was still busy not winning championships with Tennessee at the time. But one lucky tween girl got Peyton on her stage before SNL got him on theirs.
According to a Deadspin tipster, Manning accepted $200 thousand to hang out for two hours with a bunch of teenagers and Cedric the Entertainer. I probably still would have preferred the skating.
In all fairness, Barrett did take a foul-tip to the groin last year resulting in surgery and ending his season four weeks early, so who knows what that did to his sanity, though he's not exactly known for being a pushover in the first place.
Regardless, Barrett reportedly took his bat to his protected groin hard and repeatedly the first week of training camp. The Chicago Sun-Times reports that Barrett was “hitting it so hard that players in the adjoining clubhouse stopped what they were doing to find out where the noise was coming from.” Um, better safe than sorry?
The Beckham’s are paving themselves a road to a US-based bank as soon as they can.
According to Variety, Mrs. Beckham has signed on with American Idol creator Simon Fuller to do six episodes documenting her family’s move to California. Set to possibly air this summer, all the essentials involved in a big move will be touched upon, including “how a celebrity transfers her support system, including publicist, stylist and personal assistant, to a new town.”
This is the part where my east coast elitist attitude, refined by a lifetime of hard work and frugality force me to renounce Posh and all that she stands for. But I’m still probably going to watch.
A soccer game was halted in Spain Wednesday because of – gasp – violence. Sevilla head coach Juande Ramos was knocked unconscious by a bottle thrown from the stands. Sevilla had just pulled ahead in the 59th minute of a match against rival Betis when a drunk fan threw a plastic half-liter bottle half filled with soda and ice. Ramos was unconscious for about 10 minutes before he was carried off on a stretcher. He told reporters at the hospital “Betis fans aren’t represented by the lunatic who threw the bottle.” Of course they're not. They’re represented by the group that threw stones at the ambulance entering the stadium to tak Ramos to the hospital. And by the group who doused Sevilla’s locker room in bleach before the match.
There's video of the hit out on youtube, but i can't be arsed to post it at work. You can see it at With Leather.