Monday, January 30, 2012

Let's Have Some Fun...Finally...Maybe!

Anyone who's been watching football for at least the past few years should know what the NFL stands for. The No Fun League does its best to take any enjoyment from the players before, during and after the game.  For the most part I get it, at least when player safety is involved, but I miss the creative TD celebrations!  I learned last weekend a camera stand is considered a prop, while jumping up in the stands for some "grandfathered-in" leap, or using the goal posts as a basketball hoop are not.  Basically, the league/refs choose when fun is considered acceptable.

Luckily the league decided to lighten up a bit with the Pro Bowl.  Regardless of what the "Online Community Manager at the School of Information Studies" at Cuse thought, I will fully admit to being excited for the game after learning the players would be allowed to tweet from the sidelines. Finally, fun would be allowed.

Let's be honest, the Pro Bowl is, and always has been, somewhat of a joke.  Still fun to watch at times, but not a game to be taken seriously. There's no home field advantage to gain and really, they're playing in Hawaii, what do you expect? I definitely support the move to before the Super Bowl. One, it breaks up the 2 weeks of mindless coverage where sports writers start digging up stories about how a players goldfish from the school carnival influenced their decision to pursue football as a career. Two, even though football is my #1 sport, after the Super Bowl I'm pretty much ready for the season to be over and move on to college basketball.  I really don't care about not seeing players from the Super Bowl teams. They'll be on my TV, between the more exciting coverage (commercials), next week.

Back to the tweeting, I expected playful jabbing, commentary on teammates, and a general overall sense of enjoyment. I thought they'd take this moment of breakthrough from all the stiff rules and do something with it! Instead, I was almost as bored reading the tweets as I was watching the game.

I'd be lying if I said I watched the entire game (the SAG Awards were on, weighing the entertainment value the choice was clear), but I did keep the Pro Bowl list up on Twitter. The best part was London Fletcher offering up $1,000 to the first fan who guessed the final score and the MVP, then having to take it back because the NFL gave him a no-go. How fitting.

I wouldn't mind seeing the Pro Bowl as a flag football game without coaches. Let the players rule the game, and the ones not voted in can be announcers. Throw in some tailgating, and maybe a few beers on the sidelines and you've got some serious entertainment!

Friday, January 27, 2012

No. Way. | Winter X Games Snowmobiler Falls From 120 Feet

So I was browsing the interwebs last night and I came across this....

Colton Moore Crash: Freestyle Snowmobiler Falls 120 Feet at Winter X Games 

With this video -

Ok, I have to throw my 2 cents on the floor here.  There is NO WAY this kid should have been able to walk away from this. 

What I mean is, literally.  He should NOT have walked away from this!  He (probably) should have been boarded and hauled away behind another snowmobile.  And if not that, then he should have been pulled from the competition and closely monitored for internal and head injuries. 

Do you know what can happen to someone who falls 120 feet?  Roughly 12 stories?  They can die.  Their organs can get all jumbled up and turn into mush.  Protective gear or not, their ribs can splinter and break, puncturing that mushy lung tissue.  Their soft and fragile brains can slosh around in their precious skulls and rip some blood vessels and start bleeding.  Helmet or not.  It happens people. 

If you or someone you love falls from a great height, whether it's off the roof into the swimming pool or off a 75 foot jump, PLEASE PLEASE I implore you, take him/her to the damn hospital.

PLEASE for the love of God.  Don't take that chance!

Ok, off the soapbox.

Thursday, January 26, 2012


No, I'm not talking about the traditional sense of streaking, although I will admit when I typed the title to this post all I could imagine was Will Ferrell's bare ass running to the quad in Old School [love that damn movie!]. I'm talking about another streak.
"We're streaking to the Quad." • via google
The other morning while getting ready for work Mike [my husband] told me they were talking about my alma mater on ESPN'S SportsCenter. I couldn't for the life of me figure out why they would be talking about Towson University on ESPN. One thing the school was never truly known for when I went there was it's sports program. Sure we had a KILLER Lacrosse team and I hear the women's basketball wasn't too shabby but as far as sports go, that's about it. When I was in college I never once went to a football game. I sort of regret this. And equally I never went to a basketball game either. I was too worried about clubbing, drinking and socializing with boys to care about sports... should have realized I could dance, tailgate with some brews and flirt with boys all at the same time at a sporting event but alas, it never dawned on me at the time.

As I was putting on my mascara I asked Mike what they were discussing about Towson and he bluntly said "They were discussing how horrible your schools basketball team is." HARSH is the first word that came to my mind... but then upon watching the recap I realized as harsh as it is, it's totally true.
I'm still a Tiger! • via google
Towson University's Men's basketball team isn't just on a losing streak... it's on a record breaking losing streak. 40 straight games to be exact as of Tuesday of this week. WOW! Now to be fair they aren't getting totally blown out of the water in each game but the certainly aren't bringing home a BIG W for TU and haven't for over 40 games. 40 games... How does one team get so behind? I can't even imagine. Interviews with the coach have him saying he's hopeful for a turn around. I hope he's doing more than "hoping", is all I can say.

It makes me sad to see them on such a bad streak. I love my alma mater. It's not a huge school but it's got excellent programs for teaching and fine arts. I had a blast going there and made quite a few dear friends. The campus was large enough to feel like you went somewhere that was a big deal but cozy enough to feel like you weren't far from home. I was about an hour from my home to be exact. I toured lots of schools with great sports and educational programs UNC Chapel Hill, NC State [never would I ever go to the wolfpack school but I toured it anyway for the hell of it.. bottom line the school and town were amazing if I wasn't so PRO-Tarheel I might have let myself give in], I even toured East Carolina University... but in the end my tour of Towson U in Maryland made me realize I was home, felt at home and wanted to be there.

Bottom line I hate to see a school with such a low record, and it shocked me that even for a school not totally well known for their sports could have such a poor team. I guess in the end you can't all be winners but I hope they turn their season around, if not now, then next year. I heard from my father that Towson's football team actually made it all the way to their Division Playoffs. They lost in the first round but still, playoffs, that's awesome! I don't recall wins at all back when I was in school, but then again I never paid it much attention. Since graduating in 2003 I have been able to catch a few lacrosse games on television here in Alabama from time to time, which is cool but let's just say I have no way of truly keeping tabs on the teams unless I go to their website. So I guess in the end we do have a few good things happening in the sports program at TU with the football player's and their success, but I just hope that magic gets spread to the rest of the teams at the school.

In a totally unrelated news I wanted to leave you all with a bit of sports related eye candy to start your Friday EVE [Thursday afternoon] off right! I know some of the readers and writers here are bit True Blood fans, I myself am too. I'm also a HUGE Joe Manganiello aka Alcide fan... well I know he's not an athlete buttttt, what he's wearing is athletic. Well at least it's couch potato athletic and he's built like an athlete, right?  When I saw this picture in this month's Glamour magazine my heart skipped a beat... all that hotness AND a Steelers fan? Be still my loins!

He's a Werewolf in love with my team, I can dig it! • via google

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Thank You for the Ride

Yes, I'm upset. I hate losing to the Giants period, but even more so on a mistake. I hate that the refs blew the fumble call that would have put the Niners in FG position during regulation. Ohhhhh how our defense fought! But the offense had enough opportunities. This quote from Alex Smith says it perfectly. "For me, I'm looking at, what did we go -- 1-for-13 on third downs? I know it's tough for him, I'm sure he obviously is going to be thinking about those two punts for quite a while. But we didn't lose the game there."

Going in to the game I knew regardless of the outcome, I loved every minute of this season and am proud to be a fan again!

LOVE this man for turning it around!

Now I get to say something I haven't said in maybe 10 years.

We'll be back next year!

I'm still in shock we played in the NFC Championship Game AND almost won. I was born in to a championship team in 1981 (I know, not literally). I grew up expecting the Niners to be in the playoffs every year and contend for the Super Bowl. The past 10 years leading up to this season changed that. We were slowly weaned off any expectations with Jeff Garcia, Shaun Hill, J.T. O'Sullivan, and yes, Alex Smith. We cycled through coaches and coordinators like we were one-and-done college basketball players.

Then came 2011.  I don't know anyone who hoped for more than a .500 season, other than maybe Harbaugh. No expectations. Every win has been a victory. Yes, I know winning and victory are practically the same word, but think back to the Lombardi quote about lying exhausted on the field, victorious.  We fought, almost every game was a battle. When you win without expectation, leaving your entire heart on the field, it's a completely different high. We earned this.

Next year expectations will be there. We'll have the Coach of the Year, possible Defensive ROY and should-have-been Comeback Player of the Year (I still don't get why it has to go to a previously injured player, he did win the NFLPA fan's choice). The Stick will be packed at every game and hopefully, fingers crossed, I'll be there to watch!  Finally an off-season where I can worry less about coaching changes or who they'll draft with the 1st, 3rd or 5th pick, and more about who they re-sign. I'm not gonna lie, I could get used to this. Again.

It's been one hell of a ride, Niners. Thank you for bringing entertainment back to football!

I promise I'm done talking Niners/Football for awhile. Well, maybe. There's still the Pro Bowl and Super Bowl commercials. But let's be honest, I really don't care about the Super Bowl game, other than the Pats crushing Eli and entertaining Wes Welker interviews.

Friday, January 20, 2012

are you ready to ramble?

I always thought I was pretty sporty for a chick.

Not in a get-out-and-run-a-mile-and-play-soccer-and-throw-a-ball-around-and-then-land-a-perfect-triple-Salchow kind of way.  But more like a sit-around-and-drink-beer-and-watch-sports-on-a-big-screen-and-hold-my-own-when-talking-about-trade-rumours-with-a-bar-full-of-dudes kind of way.

I even listen to sports radio!

Yet, when it comes to sitting down to write this blog, week after week, I just cannot think a single coherent, sports-related thought.

So I start polling my husband, Phil for ideas...

ME: Honey...what can I write my sports blog about?

PHIL:  I don't know.  Write about how the Oilers are shitting the bed so bad that we'll probably get the first overall draft pick for the 3rd year in a row.

ME: I think people are probably tired of hearing about our lame-ass hockey team.

PHIL: *shrugs*

ME:  Wait...has any other team ever had 3 consecutive 1st over draft picks in a row before?  *googles NHL draft picks*  Do you know?

PHIL: I would have to look it up, just like you.  Besides, its your your own legwork.

ME:  Only the Quebec Nordiques have done it before, and that was in the 80's.  That could be a blog, right?

PHIL:  Yeah, I guess so.

ME:  But what else would I say about it?

PHIL: *shrugs* What about that hoser skier that just died?

ME:  What about her?

PHIL:   I don't're the sports blogger.

ME:  Pause the TV for a second while I think... ... ...AARGH!  Why couldn't it be the Olympics!?  I could write all day about the freaking Olympics!

Phil just shakes his head and turns back to the TV.

Men are no help when it comes to sports!

And when I do come up with a good idea, I just can't turn it from a blurb to a blog, and then my mind starts to wander...

I could write about how Rob Lowe caused a huge shit storm by tweeting that he heard Peyton Manning was retiring when Peyton Manning had not announced that he was retiring.  But then that gets me thinking about how Mark Wahlberg said that he could have stopped 9/11, which gets me thinking of Donnie Wahlberg and how he's turned from ripped-jean-wearing boy band bad boy to old-semi-balding wannabe serious thespian.

And that's not very sporty.

I could write about my work-out routine and how it's helping me with my poor posture.  But I haven't even looked at a treadmill, nevermind picking up weights, since before Christmas so it would really just sound more like whining about how out of shape I am.

And that's what my everyday blog is for.

So here I am...almost midnight the night before my post is due, and I got nothing.

ME: Honey, what can I call a sports post that talks about how I don't have anything sports-related to write about?

Sorry about that...I'll try to have something for you next time.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Giving Credit Where Credit Is Due

A few weeks ago, I gave our beloved Coach Cal a little scraping over the coals for running the score up and not playing his full bench. While he still has a tendency to play the starting 5 for most of the game, even when we're winning by 20 or 30 points, and there is still one player on the roster that I've never even heard of (Brian Long who??), he did bench a starter in the UK vs Tennessee game last weekend for almost half of the first half.

I don't remember exactly how this went down, but I think he took Doron Lamb out of the game for continuing to attempt desperate 3-pointers. Y'know...the kind that land with a thud on the rim and then bounce so far out that players outside of the paint are getting the rebound. Tennessee is considered to be one of our main rivalries, right behind the University of Louisville, so losing to them comes with no small amount of disgrace and bitterness. And Tennessee came to play. Coming off of a 67-56 win against Florida, they were ripe for a rivalry game. And on their court, no less.

We had a small lead at the beginning for a couple of minutes. And then it all went to hell. UK was not sinking any of their baskets...or leaping for rebounds. UT was edging closer and then they took over. And Lamb just kept throwing up bricks. Even when other teammates were open. Even when there was plenty of time on the shot clock. And then...he got yanked. For 6 whole minutes...until the end of the first half.

Doron Lamb is not necessarily the best playmaker on the team. He might get a couple of assists per game and occasionally a steal, but he's best known for sinking 3-point shots when they are most needed. And we love him for it. But what he was doing over and over again on Saturday was unacceptable and Coach Cal gave him 3 chances before yanking him and benching him. And I love him for that. Did we need Lamb to play the entire first half? Absolutely. But there are lessons to be learned on the collegiate court and he learned one last weekend.

Has your coach done something that makes you proud? Care to brag? I'm happy to listen!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Let's Play Daddy Ball!

I know. We are all in NFL playoff mode and here goes SurferWife bringing up baseball. I'm kinda over the NFL at this point as none of my teams are left and I am ONLY rooting for the Niners now because Hutch loves them. And they're from California.

So, I am moving onward and upward and annoyingward.

Let's talk Daddy Ball -- I mean Little League for a hot second.

The Ace had tryouts for Little League this past weekend. What this means is, the coaches all get together and watch these little boys show off their skills and then decide who they want to draft.


At the point where my son's baseball career is now, coaches know who most of the boys are already because they've been playing a few years. The coaches come into this knowing, for the most part, who they want to draft. And from what I hear, these drafts get ugly because coaches 'claim' players for their own teams. It becomes more about fulfilling some jacked up dream the coach has of winning the whole season. I'd guess these same coaches never actually played on a winning team as a kid.

Again. Fine. WTF do I care? I'm not there.

Teams are established and the season starts. This will be roughly my seventh season of The Ace playing baseball in various leagues (he's nearly 10) and I'd like to share with you how I see baseball seasons go down...


Season starts: Coach and his assistant are super nice. Really happy, motivating and optimistic with the little guys they chose to coach. We all basically make out with one another and it's just one big circle jerk.

Mid-Season Approaches: Players really define who they are. Remember, the teams are drafted so this means there is quite a variety of talent on the team. Some are the natural stars of the team, some work their butts off and show improvement all the time, some are there simply because they love to play and some are there because daddy simply wants them to love to play. (<---Disaster)

Mid-Season: Some coaches start to get antsy when they sense their team isn't headed towards the World Series of Little League. Suddenly, little Barry who would rather pick grass than catch a fly ball to right field is getting pulled and little Woodrow who has played the whole game and is taking a 3 minute break is replacing him in an effort for the coach to get his win. (Excuse the run-on sentence, I'm angry, ok?)

Nearing Season End:
This is when games actually matter and can lead to your division championship. There is no more circle jerking happening amongst your team. There are hurt feelings, screaming red faced coaches, temper tantrums (from adults), and a lot of, "I have been telling you all season that you need to SWING THE BAT, Gunnar!" You see boys on the bench looking like they're about to poop their pants from stress and piles of shit below coach's feet because he can't hold his sphincter the way a 10 year old can.

Playoffs: Parents making mental notes of coaches they DON'T want for their son next year, coaches yelling at other coaches, parents yelling at coaches, parents yelling at umps, coaches yelling at umps and poor little Jerome frantically eating the sunflower seeds he spilled all over the dirty dugout when coach screamed at him.


It's going to be really fun, folks. Basically, the season ends up more about the coaches and parents than the boys. I can't wait to see which coach (that I don't like) drafts The Ace.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Little miracles...

Being a Giants fan is hard. There is a lot of heartbreak that goes along with it. I don't like to get my hopes up...because I don't like to be disappointed. So when I started to hear murmurs of the potential for the playoffs, I did my best to ignore the talk.

While we watched the Giants play the Jets on Christmas Eve, we held our collective breath and when the Giants won we rejoiced. But I still kept my skepticism...because there was a huge game against the Cowboys coming up and I didn't want to be disappointed.

When the Giants beat the Cowboys...well, first I called my brother, the Cowboys fan, and rubbed his face in it. Then I said a short prayer that things would keep going well.

The following week, J and I got to go to the game. The person who bought our season tickets decided not to go to the playoff game. So we went...and it was a great game. The game was a shutout...but even better was the energy in the stadium. I've never quite experienced anything like it. Everyone was so happy and excited and there was a lot of high fiving going on.

But to be honest...I thought that game against the Redskins was going to be the Giants' last victory of the season. Their next game was against the Packers...the team that only lost one game all season. ONE GAME! There was no way...the Giants' had no shot.

Or so we thought.

I got an email from Cathy right before the game...telling me how much fun she thought the game would be. I didn't think it was going to be much fun at all. I was expecting a ridiculous blowout.
But then...that didn't happen. The Giants held their own.

And then they pulled ahead.

And then they won.

And we were shocked.

Cathy...I'm so sorry. We were prepared for our team to weren't. I'm sorry that your season ended like that.

But I'm thrilled for us. I'm thrilled for the Giants.

And I'm thrilled that we get to face the 49ers this week.

Hutch...we'll see you Sunday!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

The Season of Improbability Continues

I'm still on a high from Saturday. My voice is strained. My neck hurts. My head won't stop pounding (this might be due to dehydration, it was HOT in that sun). But I couldn't be happier.

Going in to games I usually have some sort of gut instinct about the outcome. Saturday arrived and I felt nothing one way or the other. I knew the Niners had the ability to win. I also knew Brees thrives in the 4th quarter. Our offense would have to show up.

At the time, I thought the first quarter was the most insane 15 minutes of football I had ever witnessed.  With each turnover everyone in the section, and probably the stadium, turned to each other with a look of disbelief (while jumping up and down, throwing high fives and starting the screams that would lead to the voice strain). Is this really happening? We knew we could do it, but would it really go down like this, turning Brees record-breaking season in to a joke?

Of course not, he's Drew Brees.  Duh.  By the end of the 2nd quarter, I found myself filled with a hatred for him I didn't think possible.  And I normally LOVE Brees, but what was going on with our offense? Why couldn't we score a touchdown (a normal gameday question)? Why couldn't our defense stop him like we did in the first quarter? Why did he have so long to throw on every play?  No worries though, the Niners found a way around it.  Justin Smith just used the offensive linemen to bring down Brees instead.  Oh how I love our defense!

But there's someone I love even more and there's no way I would have believed you if you told me I'd feel this way before the last 4 minutes of the game. Alex Freaking Smith (you may be unfamiliar with his middle name if you live outside of Northern California), I am SO sorry for doubting you. I'm not just talking about the last 6 years of misery, but during the game too. The first time Brees punched me in the gut, I thought there was enough time to come back and the defense would stop him like they had most of the game. The 2nd time I had to sit down (we were standing for most of the game). It was like the wind was knocked out of me. I couldn't tell whether I wanted to cry or pass out from exhaustion. 1:30ish left to go 40 yards. Yes, in my mind I was thinking field goal to tie.

Harbaugh, the best coach in the league, had something else in mind, and it was a beauty!   Smith threw a perfect pass and Davis ran a perfect route coupled with a perfect catch for the win. No Overtime, we were going to the NFC Championship game!!

Love the Sea of Red!

I look forward to someday hearing the announcers say "did they leave too much time on the clock for Smith." Year of the Quarterback? I'm not so sure. I am sure we have the most complete team left in the playoffs and when all the parts come together, with the heart they showed on Saturday, we are unbeatable.  Keep calling us the underdogs though, we don't mind proving you wrong.

Bring on the Giants!!

My condolences to Cathy. In all honesty, I figured the Niners would be headed to Wisconsin. Part of why I love the NFL playoffs, but still.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Cue "We are the Champions" by Queen, please.

Hey LSU!

Hey LSU!
Hey LSU!

We just beat the hell outta’ you!
Rammer Jammer Yellow Hammer
Give ‘em hell, Alabama!

Yeah... I said it. And I meant it. But don't get confused. I don't hate LSU in the least. I'm a fan of the SEC across the board but when it boils down to my favorite team, I had to not only choose a team from Alabama, but choose wisely when I moved here.

Kilpatrick celebrates after winning the BCS National Championship against LSU
via The Huntsville Times and
You see after this weeks BCS National Championship game you had a state that was torn over the win. Half of Alabama is happier than a pig in a muddy puddle [my half]. The other half is most likely miserable that Alabama won, but slight happy that either way an SEC team was going to win the big game. The other half also roots for Auburn University. In case you're an outsider, as I once was before moving to Alabama over 7 years ago I will break it down for you. The two main universities in Alabama are Auburn University and the University of Alabama. Bitter rivals puts it nicely. Often times around the great state of Alabama you will see signs on homes and cars and well, everything declaring "House Divided" and they will either be adorned with AL vs. Auburn items and often times you will see AL vs. Tennessee. It's hard for me to say who our "biggest rival" in the SEC truly is because everytime the SEC meets for a game it's important to our rankings and our pride as members of the SEC. I have often heard that the biggest rivalries are between Alabama and Auburn, as well as Alabama and Tennessee. After this weeks game though... I'm pretty sure we've made a rival for life out of LSU. And I'm OK with that. I welcome the tough teams and I wouldn't want us to win a Championship playing anything but the toughest team in the nation.

The University of Alabama is getting a lot of slack for being voted into the BCS National Championship. Many wanted to see Oklahoma State in the game with LSU. Honestly I will be the first to say, and I've stated here that I wanted to see Alabama vs. OSU for the BCS Championship. That would have made me over the moon, but it just wasn't meant to be. As an AL fan my view might be tainted but above all the nay saying I really feel like Alabama had every right to be in that BCS Championship. Again you probably think my view is skewed and I'm OK with that because it's your opinion. Let's call it a draw, shall we? Bottom line it was voted that Alabama would have it's rematch with LSU in New Orleans {so wish I could have been there!!!}!

The boys put up one hell of a fight on both sides of the field. As stated by AuntB in yesterday's post [which was amazing!!! well done girl!] - AL didn't let LSU past the 50 yard line more than one time during the ENTIRE GAME! That's amazing. I am a HUGE fan of strong defensive teams {helloooo, Steelers!}. I've heard a few people say that they felt this championship game was boring. I guess I have a hard time believing that only because I am usually hoarse from yelling and white knuckled through the entire game while gripping my "sword" aka "shaker" or in basic terms pom pom. True story... I am sick as a dog right now and I think my back pain might actually stem from getting overly excited during the game!!! Yeah... I'm that girl. There were plenty of moments that I cussed my brains out [did you see that dropped pass right at the end zone???? And the field goal and extra point that were missed??? Yes, I know we were ahead, the entire game but flubs don't always win football games - luckily for us it was OK in the end]. All that aside as an Alabama fan we've come to expect and know this tough defensively driven team. They are amazing. And while we could use some help in the running game on offense, for now, in this game it only hurt us a little. Thank goodness for Shelley's points {lonesome kicker, I think not!} up on the board and Richardson's touchdown {you did your babies proud son!}. At one point all I begged for was to PLEASE let us get on the board with a touchdown so I can not be as annoyed when we get flack the next day from non-AL fans. Oh don't worry, I've still heard plenty of smack talk but it's OK let the record show who won... plain and simple. I would love to see us get more of a running game like most of us that watch football games I often love the HUGE running plays and even more so defensive touchdowns - we'll see what happens in 2012 with that part of our program since we are currently in the hunt for a new offensive coordinator.

LSU put up a fight, they certainly kept us from scoring touchdowns but in the end our defense, kicker and Richardson were more powerful. I also think our teamwork speaks volumes. Not that LSU doesn't have it, but it seemed to be failing them during the game. All too often I saw Jefferson yelling negatively at his teammates, as well as giving looks of disbelief instead of building them up. It did seem that they were giving up at the end. And I wondered... where was this so called Honey Badger all night? I barely saw a peep from him. And please listen when I say this, I'm not downing LSU in the least, they are one of my top 5 SEC team favorites. {Shout out to Alabama, Arkansas, Ole Miss, LSU & Mississippi State... basically anyone in the SEC but Auburn or Florida.}

Obviously I'm over the moon about our win!!! Either way the SEC would be victorious - this counts as the 7th BCS National Titles awarded to an SEC team in the past 6 consecutive years, and that is awesome! The past three years have all been awarded to ALABAMA SCHOOLS - rivalry or not that speaks volumes for our state's programs. Football is a 2nd religion here, don't believe me? Come visit on any given Saturday in any given SEC town [college or not] - game day colors are worn, televisions and fields are screamed at and one team goes home sad and the other cheers. It's a way of life and I never believed that until I moved here. Hell, I never watched college football until I moved here and I've been totally missing out!!! Truth be told I'm a bit sad I now have to find a new outfit to wear each Saturday... I was getting used to my lucky Alabama tshirt that's worn in and comfortable. {Saturdays = Bama gear, Sundays = Steelers gear}.

I am proud of Saban - the ultimate perfectionist. I know there is a lot of speculation and questioning in his motives when it comes to how pissed he gets about a penalty when we are so far ahead, or how he kept Richardson out when we were clearly in the red zone, even Bama fans questioned this. I hate to say it but I rarely question Saban. He's good at his job and he cares about these boys, plain and simple. He has his motives and obviously it worked. He wants the boys to play their best and do their best and I think from what I can see in his behavior a penalty is a scar on an otherwise perfectly executed game. Mistakes will happen, plays will get flubbed but penalties in his eyes just seem to ruin a good thing. I get that and I like that he takes them so seriously, and I'm sure any NFL coach that gets a former Bama boy on his team appreciates that as well. I am proud of the Crimson Tide for pushing so hard! Even Maze after his injury, this being his last game of his Senior year - he still wanted to get back out there and was beside himself after his hamstring ruined his drive which would ultimately have ended up as a touchdown in our favor, most likely. He gave his all and it defeated him when he couldn't get back in. These guys love Nick and Nick loves them. I know Les loves his Tigers, as does any coach, but there is just something distinct about the reflection of it in Saban and his boys. He doesn't just make great football players, he also has the full intention of making great men.  [Sure there's a bit of a slip up here and there... we won't get into Oakland Raider, McClain's shameful behavior when he came home to Decatur, AL for a visit recently]. Dear Rolando, it's Decatur, not Oakland! But hey... one bad seed isn't supposed to spoil a whole bunch right?

I am happy that when I moved here that I choose the side of the Crimson Tide. I didn't know jack squat about Alabama or Auburn and at the time Mike [my husband] wasn't into sports like he is now. My choice was simple, I am a girl after all so my loyalty was lead based on color first. I love Red! I love it more than Orange or Navy [Auburn]. I also have a huge love for the movie Forrest Gump. Bottom line Gump played for the Tide, #44 for The Bear himself, so that's where my allegiance lies. YES I know Gump is not real, he's a fictional character, but that's how I decided. Much to my father-in-laws happiness. As a die hard Bama fan I might have been asked to leave the table at our first dinner meeting had I said the incorrect university. You might chuckle but I'm feeling 90% sure that this is a completely accurate statement... especially when Mike's dad said... "Ok she can stay for dinner."

For now I am going to celebrate our win!!! It definitely makes up for the Steelers loss on Sunday to the Broncos that left me bitter, upset and probably saying way too many unflattering things about Tebow when I should have just dropped it. Tebow fans, I'm sorry but I'm still bitter. This however gives me a clean slate. I can go out of this season on a positive note AND root for teams for FUN not passion to make it to the Super Bowl. My votes are with the Packers and the Saints! I really do love Aaron Rodgers and I have to root for Mark Ingram and his team {and Quaterback Mr. Brees} even if  Mark is on the injured reserve list he did his part to help the Saints get to where they are in the playoffs, and he made one hell of an Honorary Team Captain at the BCS Championship Game. Yes I'm fully aware that only ONE of these teams will make it to the super bowl and I should be rooting on the other side as well but honestly I can't bring myself to root for a single team on the other side - I will say my money is on the Ravens making it to the big dance - they never, ever go out without a fight. It kills me, but it's the truth.

So for the last time this year.. I will give a hearty ROLL MUTHA F'IN TIDE ROLL!!!! {for football}
And give many thanks to Saban and my Crimson Boys!!!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

How mad should LSU fans be?

After watching the BCS National Championship game on Monday, I was confused, bored, and slightly irritated. Now, I'm not a Tigers fan or a Roll Tide fan, so whoever won wasn't a big deal to me. However, I had reasons for both teams as to why I'd like to see either of them win.  So while only barely invested in the game, I still wanted to watch ever minute. After all, it was the last college football game of the year, and if I'm going to watch football, it's college football (and yes, I'm sad the season is over). However, after half time I just wanted to go to bed. I was bored. I didn't understand decisions made by either team. It was frustrating to see LSU's quarterback struggle, and leave the secondary quarterback on the sidelines. It was infuriating to see Nick Sabin go postal because one of his defensive players was flagged for being off sides on a play (when they were up 21-0 . . . seriously Sabin???).

However, Alabama's defense was stellar. I can't believe how good they were. LSU only made it past the 50 yard line once. Yes, you read that right, they only made it over the 50 yard line ONCE. They were stuck on their own side the rest of the game. No where even close enough to kick a field goal. Alabama's offense struggled, luckily they have a great kicker who scored most of the points. Of course, leaving the number one running back in the nation on the sidelines when you get close to touchdown territory is very strange to me. Both teams have coaches that I didn't agree with their choices. That's fine, they know their players and the opposing team way better than me. Just strange to hear fans booing their own players because of coaches' decisions.

What makes me sad is how LSU just seem to fold in the second half. The first half you felt like they still had a chance to turn it around. Once the 4th quarter hit, you knew they had just completely given up. I hate seeing kids just fold. But, I almost feel like they knew going it that they wouldn't win. Maybe something is going on in the locker rooms that is telling them they are going to fold. Maybe Alabama is just that much better (which I don't think it is).  But, do LSU fans have a right to be angry about what happened?

I think so. I think if your quarterback is struggling and you've got a back up, go to the back up. Your starter wasn't getting anything done anyways, what's the difference? Give the back up a chance to redeem himself! The offense LSU was trying to run wasn't working. They stuck with it. The defense did do a really great job. Unfortunately they were on the field almost the entire game, so they were exhausted. You can only take so many hits before your body won't move anymore.The team captains tried to pump up the players (or at least it looked like it), but the fans turned on the team. I'm just as bad as most, if my team is doing poorly I just stop saying anything. However, I refuse to boo anyone, except the refs. Cause sometimes they deserve it. I don't like people booing their own players. That part was not okay. It just seemed like from the coaching staff that no matter what the outcome, they had certain plays they wanted to run, and were going to run them no matter what. Which, everyone knows, you tailor your plays and skills to the game, you don't get the game to change to you.

So, I believe they have every right to be frustrated about the outcome. I'm dissapointed for them. Honestly, I think Alabama has some things to be angry about as well. I'm just glad it didn't matter who won for me. Unfortunately some people in my life are diehard tigers, and needless to say I'm steering clear for awhile!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Divisional Round Playoff Predictions

What's that? Ah -- Playoffs? Don't talk about -- playoffs?! You kidding me?! Playoffs?! I just hope we can win a game! Another game! -Jim Mora, 2001

Everybody loves Mora's Playoffs tirade, yes?! Every year as playoffs near I randomly yell "Playoffs! Don't talk about playoffs!" 10 years later and I still think it's hilarious.

Well, the playoffs are here. Wildcard weekend is over and to everyone's surprise the Broncos beat the Steelers. Kelly, darlin', I'm so sorry. (She's a Steelers fan. She's hurting right now). Please know that most of the world is saying WTF right along with you.

Let's make some predictions for this weekends games, shall we?

NO @ SF,  Saturday 4:30 ET 

I'm pretty pumped to watch this game. And not just because I'll be looking for Hutch in the stands, but because it should be a really great game. It's no secret the Saints are good, but I don't know if anyone was expecting the 49ers to be here at the beginning of the season.  
My Pick: NO by a field goal

DEN @ NE,  Saturday 8:00 ET 

What? Maybe Tebow does really have some sort of divine relationship with the big guy. I really don't know how else to explain this. Last week during the Denver Pitt game the husband of one of my favorite ladies tweeted this:

Funniest thing I heard all day. No way they make it past the Patriots though.  
My Pick: Pats by 14 (at least)

HOU @ BAL,  Sunday 1:00 ET 

I'm going to be honest here, I don't remember watching one Texans game all year. I'm sure I did, I just don't remember it. Due to QB injuries throughout the year I ended up with TJ Yates as my 2nd QB in one of my fantasy leagues. Rough, I know. But I also had Rodgers so I ended up taking home the Championship trophy, but I digress. The Ravens are rested and ready after their bye week.
My Pick: Ravens by one TD

NYG @ GB,  Sunday 4:30 ET

What to say about this? You know I'm not picking the Giants. No way, no how. Yes, our defense leaves a lot to be desired. But, they can also make some spectacular plays. I have no doubt we get at least one pick 6. Silly Manning, you can't beat us. Rodgers and our offense will be ready. This is gonna be fun.
My Pick: GB by 10

So what do you think? Are my predictions accurate?

Monday, January 9, 2012

Because Apparently I'm Crazy

Today I start P90x2. Yes, there's now a new version of P90x. I successfully completed the first version in 2010. Going from a size 6 to a 2, I lost 10 pounds and a lot of inches.  Now I'm back to where I was before I started. Not Ok with me. Getting my ass in gear begins now. But that's not where the crazy comes in.

On Sunday I start my half marathon training.


If I were to completely combine the two programs here's how my week would lay out, P90x in Blue, run training in Red.

Monday - X2 Core, Active Rest
Tuesday - Plyocide, Easy Run
Wednesday - Rest or X2 Recovery + Mobility, Speed Play
Thursday - X2 Total Body & X2 Ab Ripper, Active Rest
Friday - Yoga, Easy Run
Saturday - X2 Balance + Power, Active Rest or Easy Run
Sunday - Rest or X2 Recovery + Mobility, Long Run & Pick Ups

I can tell you right now that won't be happening.  My body would go in to shock and you'd probably be reading my obit here by Week 2.  It's one thing for actual athletes to work out 7 days a week, but no one's paying me and I know I need rest at some point (and I'm guessing even real athletes do too).  Wednesday and Sunday are set for my training group, but as of now I see myself adjusting the plans as follows.

Sunday - Long Run + X2 Core (?)
Monday - REST
Tuesday - Plyocide OR Easy Run (anyone else notice the combination of Plyometrics and Suicide?)
Wednesday - Speed Play
Thursday - X2 Total Body and X2 Ab Ripper
Friday - Yoga OR Easy Run OR Rest
Saturday - X2 Balance + Power and Recovery + Mobility

Still crazy, but definitely more manageable...I hope!  I'm not sure where the Core workout will fall.  After I get through this week I may find a way to double up with another day, but I know I will need Monday off. Thank goodness for my Massage Envy membership, I have a feeling I'll be visiting at least twice a month through March!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

a blurry line full of ugliness

Krys Barch of the Florida Panthers, while playing against the Montreal Canadiens on New Year's Eve, asked opposing player PK Subban if he "slipped on a banana peel" after he fell on the ice.

Seems innocent enough...until I tell you that PK Subban is black.

A referee overheard the commented and Barch was tossed from the game, and now the NHL has weighed in on the issue and suspended Barch one game for the perceived racial slur.

Barch admitted to saying some inappropriate and vulgar things to Subban, but nothing racist.

PK Subban said that he didn't even hear anything.

I wasn't on the ice, and I don't know a single thing about Krys Barch so I can't comment whether I believe this was a racist comment because Barch is racist, or a racist comment just to get under Subban's skin, or it was quite possibly just another run-of-the-mill insult and not racist at all - but I do know that trash-talk and bad-mouthing are common practices in hockey (as I'm sure it is in other sports as well).

So what I want to know is - where is that line of what is acceptable vitriol and what is a punishable comment?

"you wear white after labour day!"

Is it OK to chirp about your opponent's mother? Wife? If the player is going through something personal - like a death in the family or a divorce or an addiction - is that open to taunting? What about calling someone "queer" or a "fag"?

I think the worst offender of truly tasteless chirping (both on and off the ice) is New York Rangers forward Sean Avery. Not only does he play dirty, but he doesn't even think twice about saying the most reprehensible things to other players. Racial slurs are his go-to taunt, as several players around the league have complained to being subjected to slurs such as "porch monkey" and "ni**er" from Avery but I guess he has never been overheard by a ref.

Not that he cares who hears - Avery has even hailed the cameras and microphones to him so he can have a national audience to hear his filth. In 2008, when he was a member of the Dallas Stars, Avery broadcast a comment about players in the league falling in love with his "sloppy seconds" (a player of the opposing team was dating Elisha Cuthbert, who had previously dated Avery).

He got a suspension from the league for that one, and the Dallas Stars refused to let him play with their team again.

I'm not saying that Barch is even in the same stratosphere as Avery - this is the first suspension of his career - and I'm not even saying that he made a racist remark; I just don't know why its acceptable behaviour to say the nastiest, most vulgar things in the course of a "game".

So, it's OK to call someone a faggot as long as you are wearing a helmet?

And how can you just shut that off when you remove your helmet? How can that not creep into your every day life?  I know 2 kids (I say "kids" because they are both under 20, and I am old), who routinely insult each other and those around them with chirps of "homo" and "queer".  And its a joke to them to make fun of those "tea-drinking fags".

They both play hockey.

Maybe I am just a over-sensitive girly-girl*, but it bothers me, and I'm glad to see the League taking a step in the right direction and sending the message that some things won't be tolerated.

*though i doubt it, because I gleefully toss around even the most loathsome of curse words

Bringing Out the Bench Warmers

This is Coach John Calipari.

Except sometimes he looks like this. 

But mostly he looks like this. 

He is the University of Kentucky (U.K...not United Kingdom) basketball coach and essentially a god in Lexington. He gives the people what they want: a win. Consistently. Sometimes by a lot and sometimes by the hair of his chinny chin chin. We've had one loss this year and that was to Indiana. As in the Hoosiers. Also known as up there, the north, those farm boys, and the team they made that movie about that starred Gene Hackman. It was a painful loss. And by painful, I mean a 2-point-shot-that-was-in-the-air-when-the-buzzer-sounded-kind-of-pain. Cue footage from Duke's buzzer win that knocked us out of the NCAA finals. Although UK fans pretty much despise Duke across the board, we reserve our deepest disdain for Christian Laetner. 

Um...anyway, we've had one loss this season and many, many wins. But that's because we really haven't gone into SEC play yet. Our schedule has been chock full of schools like Radford, Portland, and Lamar. Raise your hand if you knew Lamar was in Texas. My bet was Arkansas. I just feel like Arkansas is home to a lot of Lamar's. It's easy to beat a school with a name like Lamar. Simply stand to the left, tap the right shoulder and when they turn to the right, run like hell. And, basically, that's what UK did. They've been giving wedgies and swirlies to every team they've played and running up the score so much that, in the end, it's a win by 20 or 30 points. Except for poor Marist. I didn't see this game but the final score was 108-58. And my question to you that right

Far be it from me to question the methods of a winning coach, but when I put myself in Marist's shoes, I feel awfully depressed about that score. What was UK trying to prove? That they can whoop up on a team that everyone has to Google? That they would be successful in reaching triple digits at least once this season? That they are happy to risk the health and safety of the starting 5 just to end with twice the points as the other team? And it's not as if double the points means it was 20 to 40 or 30 to 60. Those scores happen and sometimes they even happen when you play the rest of the bench. But 108 to 58?? That's greed. 

I don't believe that every recruit is a future DeMarcus Cousins or Michael Kidd-Gilchrist. There is always going to be an Eloy Vargus or Kyle Wiltjer...a kid who supports the team from the sidelines until there is 30 seconds left in the game and we're up by 15 points. My point is, I don't think they are being given a chance to play unless there is no way that UK could lose. OK, Coach Cal did play them a bit last week against Louisville (I think) and there were a lot of turnovers. Like literally passing the ball straight into defense hands kind of turnovers. The kind that make you roll your eyes, shake your head, and walk away. No UK player should be committing such gross errors, but I also think it's a sign that those guys need more game experience. Scrimmages on a Saturday morning don't prepare you for the crowded and deafening arena that is Rupp. Put 'em in, Coach. They're ready to play. 

Thoughts? Do you think the second string should only be allowed to play if the win is guaranteed? Is a win more important than everyone playing at the college level? Is it right to drive up the score?

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Loving football again...

Sometimes it's really hard to be a Giants fan. When you sit there, week after week, watching them blow opportunities and get their asses handed to start question why you're wasting your time when you have more important things to play Angry Birds.

But sometimes they do something great and they remind you why you love them. They did that for me this weekend.

As soon as we got the schedule for this year, we knew the New Year's Day game against the Cowboys would be a good one...but we didn't know that both teams' entire season would rest on the outcome. I kicked myself for agreeing to sell our tickets for the 1,000th time and then we settled in for the game.

Which turned out to be awesome. In the very first play, Bear Pascoe jumped over someone to avoid getting tackled. Then there was Victor Cruz's 74 yard run to the end zone...and don't forget the salsa dancing. The game was amazing...and the Giants won it...securing them a spot in the playoffs. It was like they suddenly remembered how to play football and they really put their hearts into it. I truly loved football for the first time all season.

And the best part? My brother is a huge Dallas fan and he was at the game...and I had plenty of opportunity to talk smack...or text it, in this case. Of course, he didn't answer those texts, because he was too busy crying in his beer. But it was awfully fun for me.

I can't wait until next week. It looks like the person who bought our tickets doesn't want to go to the we might actually get to go. I can't wait. I just hope I don't leave disappointed!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Playoff Bound!

Guess who's got a ticket to the Niner's Divisional Round playoff game?!  Growing up extra tickets weren't available as every seat was taken by season ticket holders.  The parents always went while we stayed home.  I won't be sitting on a couch this year!

At the beginning of the season I wasn't sure the Niners would ever make the playoffs again in my lifetime. A slight exaggeration? Maybe. But I fell in to the group of fans who thought we'd be playing for Luck.  In a weird twist of unfair fate, the Colts will more than likely end up with the most "NFL ready" of this year's college QB's.  Although, you never really know until they get there...or have to wait 7 years to find out.

Alex Smith led us to a 2nd seed.  Not just the playoffs, but a first round bye and homefield for the divisional game. Alex Freaking SMITH.  I would have laughed at you last year if you told me he'd be the QB of a 13-3 team. Granted our defense is really what's led us here and if Aldon Smith isn't up for Defensive ROY there will be some serious disappointment felt throughout Northern California.

I've had more than a couple weeks to come to grips with hearing Niners and Super Bowl Contenders in the same sentence, but I'm still in shock.  Since Sunday, all the critics or "experts" are now calling this the Year of the Quarterback, guaranteeing Brees, Brady or Rodgers will be holding the Super Bowl MVP trophy.  That's fine by me.  Take the pressure off us for a bit and put it all on one guy.  However, if the season of improbability continues and a Harbaugh Bowl Part Deux happens on February 5th, I will laugh as they all do a 180 and write about defense winning championships. 

The Niner's D just might have enough to take us to Indy and I can't wait to watch it all begin on January 14th.