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Sunday, August 31, 2008

Magical, Appearing Daily "Linkin' Logs" (8/31/08)

So, the weekend I say they'll be no Links, I manage to post Saturday and Sunday. That being said, I'll attempt to get some fellow compadres to attempt Monday, though I doubt it.

So how about the start of college football. VA Tech and Clemson proving ACC football isn't all that special and Michigan getting beat again (the once proud program proving not to be all that special). The college football season is already proving to be entertaining and I have a feeling it'll be a matter of survival within the top 10 to prove who'll be in the BCS Championship.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Deadspin's Got the Balls

It isn't everyday there's an expectation of admonishment from politically correct bloggers. With Deadspin's current lead article promoting perhaps the best joke I've heard in a few weeks. The crux of the story really is East Carolina's upset of Vagina Tech.
Problem is, this blogger can just smell the PC explosion that emanates from Josh Zerkle's well crafted pop culture joke. So props to you Zerkle and your amazing joke. This BNblogger hopes no one attempts to tear you a new one.
We can only await the jeers of "too soon" and "how insensitive." We say "blow me."

Saturday Special Daily "Linkin' Logs" (8/30/08)

Inspired by waking up early and going to visit every Mission Hiller's favorite breakfast spot, Mike's Donuts. Now I'm primed and ready to provide some (less than quality, less than daily) linkin' logs.

If you smell that, then you know, its time for football. Sure its college (and doesn't really count!), but its real football by people who care out the outcomes of games. I'm not a college football junky by any means. Needless to say, we'll all be watching

Friday, August 29, 2008

Friday Finale Daily "Linkin' Logs" (8/29/08)

If you didn't know now, John McCain just picked his running mate. I'll save the political BS, but if you're remotely politically savvy, you get it (much like Obama's choice).

What's that, you want me to talk about Obama's speech last night? My quick honest opinion was that his speech writer failed him, but he was the powerful speaker he's always been. But what do I know.

Anyway, It appears as though, I've jinxed it. Fuuuuuuucccckkkkkk. But the Phils struck back, by adding Matt Stairs (Great...)

Quick aside before the links. For the 8 of you that read/click, I may or may not be away for a few days (mid-next week?) and won't be able to post links. We'll try our best to get some coverage, but it may be sporadic at best.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Painful Daily "Linkin' Logs" (8/28/08)

Back to the old format. So I jinxed it..."Chit happens." Busy day for this BNBer and as I mentioned before, It'll be a busy weekend and on to next week.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Really Tired Daily "Linkin' Logs" (8/27/08)

So, like I said yesterday, I assume many of you politicos are reveling in the DNC this week and perhaps (perhaps) the RNC next week (in Minneapolis...ugh), but I decided that I'd peruse MSNBC to ensure full Democratic coverage (well...not really), but while browsing the anti-Fox News, I noticed one thing...yeah, just take a look.

I'm done talking about whatever that is.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Why You Can Pencil In Ted Ginn Jr. For 70 Catches, 900 Yards And 6 TDs

With all the talk of Brett Favre this and Brett Favre that, the Dolphins sneaky-quick acquisition of Chad Pennington went relatively unnoticed. Can’t you just picture Bill Parcells shaking his head in disbelief that Pennington was basically placed in the teams lap? I sure can.

Now I’m not saying Chad Pennington is going to have some type of comeback year for the ages or anything, but I am saying he’s a perfectly capable QB that was the answer to the receiving corps prayers. Think about it. One of the following QB’s was currently slated to be slinging balls for the offense, and likely to the wrong team. Complete with career stats:

Josh McCown: 609 for 1052 (57.9%), 6582 yards, 35 TD’s, 40 INT’s. He is entering his seventh NFL season.

John Beck: 60 for 107 (56.1%), 559 yards, 1 TD, 3 INT’s. He is entering his second NFL season.

Chad Henne: Has not yet started an NFL game and would have to go through the necessary growing pains expected of rookie QB’s.

Could one of those players ended up having a good 2008? Absolutely. Would you want to put any type of money on that? I doubt it. Now, let’s take a look at the QB the world forgot about, Chad Pennington:

Chad Pennington: 1259 for 1919 (65.6%), 13738 yards, 82 TD’s, 55 INT’s. He is entering his ninth NFL season.

Uh, yeah. I’ll take Pennington, thanks.

Anyway, with that obvious but necessary piece out of the way, let’s take a look at Jerricho Cotchery’s stats the year he played a bit part on offense and wasn’t on the field too much.

Jerricho Cotchery
(2005): 19 receptions, 251 yards, 0 TD’s (12 games played, 1 game started)

Now, we know that Pennington was on the team in 2005, but Cotchery wasn’t given enough playing time to benefit from that. He was also still learning the intricacies of the WR position, with it being only his second year in the league and his first with some good, solid playing time. Let’s take a look at Ted Ginn Juniors stats in his first year in the league:

Ted Ginn Jr.
(2007): 34 receptions, 420 yards, 2 TD’s (16 games played, 9 games started)

It’s easy to see that Ginn had much more of a role in his rookie year than Cotchery had in his first two years in the NFL combined. Because of this, Ginn is likely well-entrenched in the verses of the WR position. Now let’s take a look at Cotchery’s first year with a starting role in the offense, one that formally introduced him to Chad Pennington.

Jerricho Cotchery
82 receptions, 961 yards, 6 TD’s (16 games started)

Not bad. A lot of that can be attributed to Cotchery’s talent but couldn’t some of it also be placed on Pennington? Cotchery was targeted 125 times in 2006 and the ball managed to find itself safely in his hands 82 of those times. Pennington may be knocked for his lack of any kind of powerful arm, but the man is accurate. He’s completed nearly two thirds of his throws his entire career. All in all, I think it’s safe to assume that he’s a quality QB.

With Cotchery barely able to build a rapport with Pennington in 2005 due to the small amount of playing time, the two essentially built a connection throughout the 2006 season itself. Cotchery was also the second option for Pennington, with Laveranues Coles easily claiming the title of both WR1 and the QB’s favorite receiver.

Jumping back to the present, Ginn is the clear cut WR1 on a Dolphins offense that’s looking to begin moving forward after some serious off-season patch-up work. What does that mean? It means that Ginn will likely benefit from not only more targets (he had 71 last year), but also from a competent QB who can consistently throw the ball in his general vicinity.

Is it that much of a stretch to think that Ginn could put up similar numbers to what Cotchery churned out in 2006? No. It’s definitely not. The stretch would lie in how much better you think Ginn could do. Cotchery was targeted 125 times as the WR2 but also benefited from having a superb receiver lining up opposite of him in Laveranues Coles. Ginn saw 71 targets last year as a rookie and it was a year in which he didn’t get much playing time until Chris Chambers left before Week 7.

I would say that 125 targets for Ginn is a basement estimate. With reports that Ronnie Brown may have to start the season at a snails pace thanks to his finger injury, the Dolphins are sure to lean on Pennington until Brown returns. No offense to Ricky Williams since I’m sure he’ll contribute somewhat, but I want to see how he looks during an actual game that means something. The guy is 31 years old and not counting last years disappointing six attempt season, hasn’t played a substantial amount of time in the NFL in what’s now approaching three years. If thinking the Dolphins are going to pass a lot makes me crazy then so be it. I don’t want to be sane.

In the interests of being realistic and not allowing the predictions to get out of hand, I say it’s safe to pencil in Ginn for at least 130 targets. Please note the ‘at least’ part of that statement. Out of the 130 balls thrown to him, say 10 get called back by penalties or are nullified for whatever reason. Chad Pennington’s career completion percentage is 65.6% but we’ll give age and a change in living situation the benefit of the doubt here and say he’ll complete 60% of his passes this year. That’s probably the bare minimum. Add in a quick entrance from our friend the calculator and that leaves us with the following projection:

2008 Projection

Ted Ginn Jr: 130 targets, 72 receptions, 900 yards, 6 TD’s

And that is being GENEROUS with the negative outside factors. Barring some type of major injuries to Ginn himself, Pennington or the offensive line, that stat line could very easily be achieved by Ginn unless he’s managed to lose his football talent somehow during the off-season.

Aaaand... scene!

A Special DNC Edition of the Daily "Linkin' Logs" (8/26/08)

One thing you'll never find on BNB is political posturing. If you wanted my views of politics, the election and global warming, you'd visit "" but the fact of the matter is, BNB is a sports hub for things that least in some way...related to sports.

We're also not blind to the outside world, and so if any of you watched the riveting speech by one fmore innocent than O.J., Edward "Ted" Kennedy last night, you have to admit to yourself, we're in for a pretty interesting couple of months and I'm already begining to think about pregnant chads and lost absentee ballots. Needless to say, BNB will keep an eye on this and, for the most part, just poke fun at it...

Monday, August 25, 2008

Monday Mornin' Daily "Linkin' Logs" (8/25/08)

With the tape delayed Olympics now in the books, the sports world is most likely hungover and awaiting October Baseball and...Yes! Football is now just about in full swing, as Labor Day Approaches.

What to expect, will be this. As I will have limited internet access over the next week or two, expect the Links to be more sporadic than usual. I will try to have some other BNBers cover, but it may be limited. We'll do out best to be ready for football season. That being said, be prepared for some top level (well, blogger top level...ok, not shitty) NFL coverage...and for that matter, more random things like interviews with gladiators.

On to the links!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Hungover Daily "Linkin' Logs" (8/24/08)

As (semi-) promised earlier this week, here's an attempt at some "Linkin' Logs" for the weekend. Shorter than usual, mostly because my head kind of hurts.

Just a few for fun:

Friday, August 22, 2008

Pack Em In (heh) Daily "Linkin' Logs" (8/22/08)

Yesterday and today, America will either be the empire striking back or watching young skywalker use the force against us.

Actually, that might be the worst Star Wars analogy ever, but that's besides the point. Yesterday, the US Women's soccer team exerted their world dominance in a match that didn't favor them from the start. But the ladies brought home the "goald" in such entertaining fashion (for soccer at least) that little American girls will at least want to be Brandy Chastain one more time, though for our sake, I hope they wait till their 18. Good for soccer, good for the US and good for the world.

On the other hand, the ladies who use their gloves couldn't seal the deal against Japan and captured Silver in an event the US has always dominated, though Elizabeth Merrill of ESPN suggests the loss wasn't such a bad thing, and she might be right. We won't know till 2020, when the games could end up in Boston, but I have to believe that Softball is out for at least a longer period.

But today is really a day for redemption. The Redeem team will face Manu Ginobili (Whom Robert Horry once declared the best European player, thus sealing Horry's bid for the US Special Olympics Basketball squad) and the Argentinian team (arguably the best team outside the US), which stunned the US in the previous games en route to gold and again in the World Championships a year later. Now the Redeem Team is on a mission to reclaim to take back what is there's. Tip off for the game is...well...right about now (10:15AM EST).

Thursday, August 21, 2008

2x Daily "Linkin' Logs" (8/21/08)

As the crazy stalker person on BNB would say, "Chit Happens." And in this case, you probably (didn't) missed our Daily "Linkin' Logs" from yesterday. Naturally, I did not. I apologize, but perhaps I'll do my best to add a weekend DLL for completeness's sake. Who knows.

Naturally, if you haven't heard, Gene Upshaw lost his life to Pancreatic Cancer. I say lost his life rather than lost his battle because frankly no one really knew about this, not even Upshaw. And with that sad news, we move on to the links.
UPDATE: Just for fun, I felt this Dream Team vs. Redeem Team "WhatifSports" article needed to be added

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

A Case For Brodie Croyle

Brodie Croyle was 0-6 in his starts last year, so why should you break him off a piece of that forgiveness bar you ask? Well, let's find out.

To start off, let's take a look at some stats from last year:

The Denver Broncos – 7th ranked pass defense in the NFL

The Indianapolis Colts – 2nd ranked pass defense in the NFL

The Oakland Raiders – 8th ranked pass defense in the NFL

The Tennessee Titans – 10th ranked pass defense in the NFL

The New York Jets – 9th ranked pass defense in the NFL

What do these teams have in common you say? Well, each accounted for one (two in the Broncos case) of Brodie Croyle’s six major losses last year. As I’m sure you noticed, each of them finished with a top ten passing defense for the year.

Now while I’m the first to admit that Croyle looked pretty bad regardless of who he played, isn’t it worth taking into account that every single one of his losses came against a highly skilled passing defense? Plus, he was practically a rookie last year!

Not only did he not have his RB (and Rockafella fan) Larry Johnson on the field to help take the focus off him, he was also playing behind an incredibly suspect offensive line that is ranked near the bottom of nearly every offensive line ranking list out there. Add the two together and what do you get? That's right, the stirring of something in your stomach. That is what's called sympathy and you may be starting to feel it for the Chiefs young QB for the very first time.

I’m not trying to say that the kid is going to go on and have a Hall of Fame career and yes, the offensive line still has issues, but with Larry Johnson back behind him isn’t it fair to cut him a break for last year and wait to see what he does this season? Am I asking too much? Am I missing anything here? Do I ask too many questions?

Think about it. Croyle went 127 for 224 (56.7% completion percentage) and threw for 1,227 yards. He averaged 5.5 yards per attempt and matched his 6 touchdowns with 6 interceptions.

Call me crazy but for a first year starter that isn’t a bad line. Normally an equal touchdown to interception ratio wouldn't be a good thing but it was his first year as a starter. Not too shabby. Especially when you consider the murderers row of passing defenses he faced during his starts last year.

Anyway, doesn’t all of this warrant giving him a free pass for last season? It was his first year and he had an incredibly difficult schedule. For all we know, he’s been studying up and learning the playbook and will come out guns-a-blazing this season.

Or he will continue his losing streak and prove the tough schedule he had was just a coincidence. Let's hear it!

Daily Erin Andrews:Girls of The Olympics Pt 3

The Olympics are in full swing, the girls are out of the pool and out on the track. And here at TBNB we love track. There are only a couple days left so make sure you get your fill and enjoy.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

NFL Preseason Week 2 Wrap-up

The Derek Anderson-led Cleveland Browns, and the defending champion New York Giants capped off the second week of NFL preseason football action last night. The Giants led the game, 30-17, at the half, and pretty much dominated the Browns offense. Anderson left the game early after going 4 for 10 for 20 passing yards, a 56-yard field goal kicked by veteran Phil Dawson being the only score in the first quarter. Anderson left shortly after fumbling an attempt at an exchange with running back Jamal Lewis. New York’s James Butler returned the fumble 95 yards for a 30-3 lead just 33 seconds into the second quarter of play. Eli Manning’s 2 TD passes led New York to the halftime lead. But, Brady Quinn and the Browns came out in the third quarter on fire. Quinn threw a TD pass to Syndric Steptoe early in the third quarter, and Cleveland scored 10 fourth quarter points. But, New York held on to the 37-34 win, picking up win #1 of the preseason.

Game Scores/Recaps:

Thursday August 14 th, 2008

Pittsburgh 21, Buffalo 24

Both starting quarterbacks (Ben Roethlisberger, and Trent Edwards) made little mistakes, both going 9 for 11 with 100+ passing yards, while Byron Leftwich made his first appearance in Pittsburgh black and gold. Buffalo’s Edwards has made a strong campaign for the starting job so far, and Dick Jauron would be a fool to start Losman over Edwards come week 1.

Carolina 13, Philadelphia 24

Jake Delhomme made his anticipated return from Tommy John surgery, completing 9 of 14 passes in the process. But, Kevin Kolb, and Tony Hunt stole the show. Kolb jump-started a Philadelphia scoring-spurt late in the fourth quarter with 33-yard toss to Greg Lewis for their first score of the evening with 6:41 to play. Just 30 seconds later Philly added a 40-yard field goal to that, cutting their deficit to just three points. Four short minutes later, Hunt ran for a 51-yard TD to take the lead for good. Philly added injury to insult with a Justin Roland 74-yard interception returned for a TD after Carolina’s Matt Moore attempted a last-minute scoring drive.

Friday August 15 th, 2008

Oakland ran for 224 yards, 77 of those yards belonged to 27-year old Adimchinobi Echemandu, and rookie running back Darren McFadden ran for 44 yards on six carries in his second NFL game. But, Tennessee’s third-string QB, 26-year old Ingle Martin, lead a late scoring drive. The scoring drive was capped by a game-winning 33-yard field goal hit by John Vaughn as time expired. Tennessee came out on top, despite Vince Young’s early struggles, finishing 4 for 13, with 37 yards passing.

Saturday August 16 th, 2008

Washington 13, New York Jets 10

The much-anticipated Brett Favre debut finally happened on Saturday night in New York. Favre’s first TD pass as a Jet came with five minutes to play in quarter number one. Favre threw a short 4-yarder to rookie TE Dustin Keller, who finished with 2 catches for 26 yards, and 1 TD. But, Washington’s rookie QB Colt Brennan led a last-minute scoring drive which ended with a 33-yard TD toss to Jason Goode. Washington held off the eager Jets 13-10.

Indianapolis 16, Atlanta 9

The Colts, still Manning-less, held off the Falcons without any offensive TD’s. But, three field goals, and a Kelvin Hayden interception returned for a touchdown was enough to hold off the young Atlanta Falcons. Atlanta’s rookie QB, Matt Ryan, completed 8 of his 16 passes, and one interception (three total INT’s thrown by ATL). Jason Elam’s three field goals was the only way Atlanta was able to score. Although Atlanta’s biggest offseason acquisition, Michael Turner, ran for 113 yards on just 4 carries. That is an average of 28.5 YPC. Pretty impressive second game, huh?

Miami 19, Jacksonville 14

Chad Pennington’s debut was a solid one, going 5 for 6 for 55 yards. Rookie QB Chad Henne attempted 26 passes for 133 yards in the three quarters of play. Ricky Williams provided Miami’s only TD, running the ball in from 4 yards out in the first quarter. Dan Carpenter’s fourth field goal in the third quarter gave Miami a 19-0 lead. But, Jacksonville never gave up, and Todd Bouman led the Jags to two TD’s in the final 6 minutes. Though Bouman’s comeback failed, and Miami held on to the 19-14 win.

Minnesota 23, Baltimore 15

Tarvaris Jackson left the game early with a sprained MCL, but Gus Frerotte, and Brooks Bollinger picked up where he left off, throwing for 132 yards, and a TD. Baltimore’s rookie RB Ray Rice, and second-year QB Troy Smith tore up the turf, running for a combined 112 yards, and a TD (6-yard run by Rice in 1 st QTR). As a team, Baltimore ran for 7.9 yards per carry, but turned the ball over twice, with 6 penalties. Minnesota took the 8-point victory in the end, but suffered a huge blow when T-Jack went down.

Arizona QB Matt Leinart led the team with 62 passing yards, and one TD pass, leading Arizona to the 10-point victory. But, Kansas City saw some positive out of 24-year old QB Tyler Thigpen. Thigpen attempted a majority of the Chiefs’ passes for 174 yards, including a last-second TD pass to Sergiori Joachim from 14 yards out. Arizona came out on top with no turnovers and just 3 penalties all game.

St. Louis’ RB Travis Minor scored the game’s only TD, when he ran for a three-yard score late in the third quarter. Nate Kaeding’s two first quarter field goals proved not enough. Marc Bulger threw for 2 interceptions, and completed just 7 of his 14 pass attempts, but the Rams’ offense dominated anyway. They outgained San Diego 309-203, and accumulated nearly twice as many first downs (21-11).

Both teams went interceptions-less, and thrived through the air. Steve Slaton ran for his first career NFL TD early in the fourth quarter. The TD put Houston on top for good. Both starting quarterbacks had great games stat-wise. Matt Schaub completed 14 of 16, and Drew Brees 12 of 17. Both teams defenses struggled to stop the opposing offense from scoring.

Dallas 13, Denver 23

Jay Cutler had a fantastic game for the second consecutive week. This time, Cutler completed 16 of his 20 passes for 178 yards, and a TD pass to his favorite receiver, Brandon Marshall, in the second quarter. Denver controlled the ball for 33 of the 60 minutes of play, and had no turnovers with just 6 penalties. On the other side of the ball, Denver’s defense allowed just 70 yards on the ground to the Cowboys as rookie RB Felix Jones saw just 3 carries for 17 yards. Third-string Dallas QB Richard Bartel threw the game’s only interception to Denver’s rookie CB Jack Williams from Kent State. Kicker Matt Prater, taking over for Jason Elam, was the difference, kicking three field goals through the uprights in the third and fourth quarter of play.

Aaron Rodgers’ second game as the new Green Bay QB didn’t go as well as expected. Rodgers completed 9 of 16 for 58 yards, and failed to conduct a drive resulting in a TD in his quarter of play. San Fran’s QB J.T. O’Sullivan gained some ground in the Niners’ QB race by going 8 for 17 for 154 yards, a TD, and an INT in San Francisco’s big 34-6 victory on Saturday. The 49er defense sacked Green Bay’s quarterbacks six times, and recovered three of their fumbles…Things aren’t looking too good in Green Bay right now. Rodgers better step up his game when September rolls around.

Chicago 26, Seattle 29 (OT)

The final game on Saturday was decided in overtime as Seattle’s young kicker, Brandon Coutu booted a 36-yarder through the uprights for an instant win. The field goal was his fifth of the game, an impressive night for Coutu, as he outkicked Chicago’s Pro Bowl kicker, Robbie Gould. Former Cleveland Brown QB, Charlie Frye, was the only Seattle QB to take snaps in the entire game, and he ended up throwing 3 interceptions. Luckily, rookie RB Justin Forsett had a big game (15 carries for 136 yards, 1 TD, 9.1 YPC), and Coutu’s leg helped save Frye in the end.
Sunday August 17 th, 2008

Not only did the Detroit Lions humiliate Cincinnati on their home turf in just the second preseason game of the year ’08, but they also lost All-Pro wideout Chad Johnson for the remainder of the preseason. Johnson landed awkwardly on his shoulder after going for a Carson Palmer throw in the first quarter. Johnson may not be 100 percent come opening weekend, which is a big blow to this high-powered offense. They were already playing without Pro-Bowl WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh. Cincinnati’s Ryan Fitzpatrick, and Jeff Rowe attempted to make up for the early Palmer mistakes, but failed as Jon Kitna, and Drew Stanton each threw for a TD pass in Detroit’s win.

New England was without Tom Brady, who was back in Massachusetts nursing his latest injury, and it showed. New England turned the ball over 3 times throughout the 60 minute game, and the Bucs were even able to score a TD on defense. New England QB’s—Kevin O’Connell and Matt Cassel—combined to go 12 for 25 for 118 yards passing, and 1 INT. Tampa outgained the Pats 295-174, and won the game by 17 points.

Monday August 18 th, 2008

Brady Quinn, and Ken Dorsey both had solid games for Cleveland after Derek Anderson went down with what was later identified as a mild concussion. But, Eli Manning threw for 2 early TD’s, and helped New York build an early 30-3 lead. Quinn, and Dorsey led the Browns with an impossible comeback, scoring two consecutive TD’s just before halftime, and outscoring New York 17-7 in the second half. But, the Browns dug themselves too big a hole early on, and weren’t able to complete the comeback. But, Cleveland should be happy with their QB production from Quinn, and Dorsey, who combined to go 16 for 23, 267 passing yards, 2 TD, 0 INT.

In the News:

Chad Johnson suffered a sprained shoulder in Cincy’s 27-10 loss to Detroit on Sunday. Johnson will sit out the remainder of the preseason.
Troy Polamalu is expected to practice with Pittsburgh this week.
Indy’s Dwight Freeney, and Bob Sanders are expected to be cleared to practice later this week.

Tom Brady says foot injury is on same leg as his earlier ankle injury, but the two are not related. Brady is unsure whether he’ll play Friday v.s. the Eagles or not.
Tarvaris Jackson left Minnesota’s game early with a strained MCL. He is not expected to miss the season opener, though.

Shortly after Chicago’s game against the Seahawks, Kyle Orton was named the starter for Chicago’s opener against Indianapolis.
With Johnson hurt, the Bengals brought back troubled wide receiver Chris Henry. The Bengals cut Henry earlier this offseason due to his off-the-field troubles.
Peyton Manning attended his first practice with Indianapolis today, Tuesday the 19 th of August.

Daily Erin Andrews:Girls of The Olympics Pt 2

The Olympics are toiling on in China and seemingly the whole world is watch. Well we are watching as well, and there are a couple athletes who have caught our eye and we thought it was time to share them with you.


Top of Tuesday Daily "Linkin Logs" (8/19/08)

Obviously, if you've paid attention, you knew about it by mid-day yesterday. But for those who prefer a more prime-time approach (not Neon Deion), found out late last night that (some believe) Nastia Liukin was robbed, hosed or even screwed.

Fact of the matter is. She wasn't really. You can hate on the Chinese pre-teens or the home field advantage or the judges or the scoring system itself. But the fact of the matter is (for however insensitive it is), that the rules were laid out before hand and everyone knew about them.

This isn't Vinny Testeverde not making it to the goal line; both gymnasts were clearly (in the judges eyes) as good as gold, but because of the rules this is where we sit today. And in perhaps an even more gold medal worthy performance Liukin took it with grace and humility. It didn't hurt that she won the overall gold though.
  • In a powerbalancing move (probably not in line with the Adam Dunn acquisition), the Dodgers have reaquired Greg Maddux for the stretch run. Given that their offense has risen from its slumber now (thanks to their powerbat acquisition, Manny Ortiz), the Dodgers certainly look like a match for the D-Bags
  • I challenge you to tell me which is funnier: Exhibit A or Exhibit B or Exhibit C
  • On that note, Epic Carnival explains why the Bears went with Orton. I theorize that the discussion ended with Lovie Smith saying: "Fuck it...Orton"
  • Additionally, PFT theorizes that the Henry signing may be due to Chad Johnson
  • Now I've been debating with myself whether or not I'd even be mildly interested in attending the Pats vs Eagles game this Friday in Foxborough (as a loyal Eagles fan, I attended last year's near-shocker, A.K.A. the blueprint game), but not it may be even less worth it. Yeah Tom, I think you're milking it...
  • Given the Jimmy Rollins debacle in Philly as of late, numerous Philly Bloggers lead by We Should Be GMs are fighting the good fight, to stop the boo birds and cheer all the Phillies moves against the Nationals. Thanks god for, as I'll be tuning in on the hilarity of 10 people going nuts after Ryan Howard boots one
  • Obligatory Charles Barkley Link...(I think you know what this is about)
  • While I could give to shits about the Buffalo Bills or Jason Peters, I thought PFT had an excellent title for this Rumor
  • KSK informs us Peter King is a dumbass (we already knew this). But seriously, where does King get off? Sure I think Jets fans can be douches (yes brothers, we boo too), but expecting a sellout for a pre-season game is stupid, Favre or no Favre. Moreover, this is the same Peter King who thinks its ridiculous that owners charge regular season prices for these tickets. Well Peter, I think I'd rather spend my 50 bucks watching a washed up Favre for 60 minutes than just 15 or 30...
  • And courtesy of the Fightins, Pat Burrell...Awesome!

Monday, August 18, 2008

The Legend of...Tim Hauck

“The Legend of” is a series of articles compiling athletes who may appear forgettable but have forever etched themselves into the mind of at least one fan.

When hearing the name Tim Hauck, most people aren’t flooded with memories of his 6 forced fumbles, 1 interception, dependable attitude, hard hitting style or 379 tackles. Actually, when you mention Tim Hauck to the football knowledgeable, most will only remember one play.

But those who knew Tim Hauck, or watched him play realized that whatever Hauck had, he’d give to you. Guaranteed.

Tim Hauck played 14 seasons, totaling 183 games for seven different franchises, the Patriots, Packers, Broncos, Seahawks, Colts, Eagles and 49ers. He served as a starting safety, backup defensive back, special teams player and veteran leader for a Philadelphia Eagles team that needed each of those parts to accomplish the model franchise they’ve become today.

In 1999, Hauck served as the starting strong safety in Andy Reid’s first year. He was an integral part of a solid defense and noted of rookie Donovan McNabb; "I knew Donovan would be special, because I played with the Colts when Peyton (Manning) was a rookie. That year (1998) Manning was thrown to the wolves, leading the league in interceptions. Both rookies had great size, and a calm pocket presence. And McNabb's ability to elude tacklers as a rookie in practice jumped out at me." 1

That season was also the last for Hall of Fame Wide Receiver Michael Irvin, something Hauck took part in, though its important to note its something he doesn’t revel in. "First of all, I think a few Eagles fans put me on a pedestal, because everybody hated the guy. But my intent was never to hurt him," suggested Hauck. "I saw him run a slant route, and when I went to tackle him he actually ducked under me and I saw his head go into the turf. I barely got a piece of him. And the league never once fined me for that hit on him.”1

Hauck moved into a backup role in 2000, as a fiery Eagles team marched into the playoffs and cemented their status as a rising elite team. The highlight of his season included a crucial onside kick recovery in the 26-23 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers.

But the safety's favorite moment occurred in 2001, when the upstart Eagles bullied the Chicago Bears in Soldier field in the icy cold of January 33-19. Hauck’s highlight was forcing a fumble late in the game and closing out any hope the Bears had and leading them into the first of many NFC title game appearances.

Hauck retired after his 2003 season with the 49ers. He then went on to join his brother, Bobby, at the University of Montana serving as a special assistance for the safeties and later becoming the defensive backs coach. After serving one year as the secondary coach, Hauck was offered the opportunity to serve in the same position under Rick Neuheisel’s new staff at UCLA.

But to this fan, Tim Hauck will always be remembered as a tough player, someone who would do whatever is asked and, of course, as the man who ended Michael Irvin’s career. I had an opportunity to exchange some e-mails with Hauck regarding his playing days with the Eagles, as well as his current coaching opportunities:

You began your career in 1990 as a New England Patriot, but really from 90-94 in you were in Green Bay and eventually starting in your last year there. Like most players, you had to work hard to get into that position, even while facing some adversity. Most players, however, talk about one thing and that's there "welcome to the NFL moment." What was yours?

There were a few moments early in my career that made me open my eyes and say "wow", you are now in the NFL! The first regular season game I played in was vs. the Bills. In the first quarter, we were in a two deep defense. I cruised into my drop (using a smooth back pedal). A moment later James Loften is about 10 yards behind me. Thank God the QB (I believe it was Jim Kelly) didn't find him. My career could have been over before it ever started. This is when I realized, Tim, you are not at Montana and it's not the preseason anymore - welcome to the NFL.

In 1998, you had, up until that time, your best pro season with the Indianapolis Colts and then signed with freshly minted head coach, Andy Reid and the Philadelphia Eagles on April 15th of 1999. Why did you go with the Eagles and what did Reid provide you that (seemingly) made such a mark? What was the plan that you had to "buy into?"

When I left the Colts, I left with a bitter taste in my mouth. I was coming off my best season and the contract they had offered me was basically a minimum base salary deal. Plus, they had gone out and signed another safety for big money. Don't get me wrong, I loved Indianapolis and appreciate the opportunity Coach Mora gave me, but the writing was on the wall and it was time to move. Coach Reid and the Eagles made me a nice contract offer and the promise to be able to compete for a starting job. This was the best decision I made in my NFL career. Andy put together a ver
y competitive football team, and Jim Johnson and Steve Spagnola were awesome coaches to work with. I loved Philadelphia and the fans treated me very well (I think they could relate to a blue collar player like myself). Last, but not least, my teammates were incredible. The chemistry in that locker room was amazing.

That 1999 season was a fateful one for you and I'd be remiss to not at least ask a few questions about "the play" you are probably most famous for. On that cold October day at the Vet you made a play that would not just go down as the end of an era, but now lives in infamy right next to th
e booing of Santa Claus. Do you remember the play (would you mind describing it and what your were thinking), what did you think of the fans reaction and how do you feel about it now? Have you spoken to Michael Irvin since then?

The play Michael Irvin got hurt on, was a very basic pass route. He was running a shallow slant route and I got a great break on the ball. I got such a good break, I thought I was going to end up with a huge hit, but he knew I was coming too. He tried to go down and go under the blow. Instead of a huge hit, I just ended up with a glancing blow that knocked his head into the Vet turf. The next thing you know, he was not getting up. You don't expect any play to be career ending and you hate to see players get hurt. I don't feel bad about the play. It was a clean hit. I was just playing football the way its suppose to be played - fast and physical. I have not seen him since. I wish him the best. He seems to be doing well. I hear him on Sunday morning tv like everyone else.

Does Michael Irvin talk more or less than he does on TV now?

Same guy, same talk.

I'm sure the '99 incident with Michael Irvin isn't exactly something you revel in (a hit's a hit, but you never want to really end someone's career), but you've had some other shinning moments, from recovered onside kicks to fateful forced fumbles, but what's the one play, you took part in, that really sticks out in your mind as your moment in the sun?

There are two plays that stand out in my mind. The first one was a playoff game vs. the Bears (I believe it was in 2001). I had a great hit on a kick-off early in the 4th quarter. It created a fumble, we
recovered it, and this sealed our victory and a spot in the NFC Championship game. The next play was against the Saints in 2001 or 2002. I remember it was my first start of that season. Joe Horn didn't warm-up with his teammates - he followed me around the whole pregame (and talked more trash than any one human can talk). Early in the first half, I got one of my best hits of my career on him. He did not play much the rest of the game. Justice was served!

Who's the guy you hated playing against the most?

Barry Sanders - he was amazing

You've since moved on from the NFL, first heading to Montana to work with your brother and more recently heading over the Southern California to work
with Rick Neuheisel with the goal of bringing UCLA football back to its old prominence (Freddie Mitchell aside…heh). What are you hoping to bring to UCLA and what kind of goals do you and your group (DBs) have going into your first season at the Rose Bowl? Any chance you and Neuheisel can show Pete Carroll who the real team is?

The move to UCLA was a good move for my career - even though it was extremely hard for me to leave Montana. The biggest thing I have been preaching to the safeties at UCLA is attitude. You must be the toughest and nastiest players on the field. Playing fast, hard, and physical goes a long way. We have a ways to go to catch USC, but were working on it.

Tim Hauck is now preparing his boys to take the PAC-10 back to the True Blue and Gold. As secondary coach, he's making no promises but believes they're headed in the right direction. The Bruins first game will take place on Labor Day at 2PM EST in the Rose Bowl against the Tennessee Volunteers. - Where are they Now: Tim Hauck

Going For Gold Daily "Linkin' Logs" (8/18/08)

Looked at the calendar this morning and realized its already the 18th of the month; only about another month of summer and more like 2 weeks for real (pre-labor day) summer. Stunning

Well, unless you were stuck under a rock, in a cave, with your ears plugged and your hands over your eyes, you heard about Michael Phelps. Phelps is now a matter of national pride, and now the winningest Olympian in history. These facts aren't really debatable.

What's become debatable is the level of Phelps greatness. Some declare him the best ever based on his 14 career gold medals and 16 career medals (the others being two bronze medals from the Athens Games in 2004) and numerous world records. Others are not so sure, claiming advanced training methods, new swimsuits, deeper pools and so on give everyone an advantage to break records. Moreover, Phelps competing in 8 events this time, while Spitz only competed in seven, winning all of them in record fashion.

This BNBer is fine with saying Phelps is the best. Remember, records are made to be broken. Moreover, everyone Phelps competed with had the same advantages and the fact of the matter is much like every other sport, things advance and greatness is achieved over prior greatness. If you can't accept Phelps becoming the best, that it is my opinion that you're just stuck living in the sports past.

Besides, no one will really care in 2010...

Friday, August 15, 2008

Friday Finale Daily "Linkin' Logs" (8/15/08)

Would you laugh at me if I told you I enjoyed portions of the women's gymnastics events last night. Sure I was at a bar. Sure I was imbibing some of Boston's finest beverages. Sure I have a severe headache this morning. But last nights events, resulting in Americans taken first and second, certainly had the type of quality performance that will...well it'll be reran during the 2012 games and so on.

But in reality, watching a fellow countryman (countrywoman?) follow through years of hard work and watch it come to fruition is a moment many of us Americans take seriously. And so, in a rare moment, this BNBer salutes those for...well...just trying really hard.

Anyway, that will be a rare (real rare) glimpse into the nice side of BNB...let's go back to making fun of Chad Johnson

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Daily Erin Andrews:Girls of The Olympics Pt 1

Okay so the entire world is catching Olympics fever, and that's cool. But we don't want to be on the outside looking in. So in an effort to get into the whole swing of things as well. And what better way to get into the Olympic spirit than enjoying some of the beautiful scenery China has to offer.

f it looks this good now, just wait till the track and field events start.

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