Post Turkeyday Blog

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Well it's Tuesday now so we probably have all had our dose of Thanksgiving leftovers and had a chance to digest the happenings in the sports world and such.

My quick observations and thoughts from the past weekend:

- USC has earned the right to play for the national championship so far, but Florida has a legit argument as to why they should be playing Ohio State instead.
- The Eagles defense is the top problem to deal with, not the offense.
- The Phillies aren't exactly in the World Series talk with the signing of Eaton, but it's not exactly a terrible move.
- The Flyers should start focusing on the draft about two weeks ago.
- With football grabbing the attention on Thanksgiving weekend, you may have missed the college basketball season in full swing.
- If the Red Sox can't sign the Japanese pitcher, then they should be ashamed of themselves to no end (remember, they paid about $50 million just to talk to him).

I know I haven't given my thoughts on the college basketball scene yet, but stay tuned, it'll be up by week's end.


Ode to Ryan Howard

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Congratulations Ryan Howard! You have been voted National League MVP! What are you going to do now?

While we'll skip any plug for Mickeytown USA, we should commemorate Howard's first of (maybe of a few) MVP awards. On a day following up another dreadful Eagles loss, a weekend of mediocrity with the Flyers and Sixers, the day that Alfonso Soriano (a player aimed by the Phills to possibly protect Howard in the lineup) signed with the Cubs, and on the same day that former Eagle player from the Buddy Ryan defense that is so heralded in the Philly area, Andre Waters, was found to have committed suicide, it is none other than the genuine, pure, and likeable Ryan Howard who brings a smile to everybody's faces on the cold dreary days of November.

Howard deserved the MVP award without a doubt. You could make a good case for Albert Pujols as well, but Howard is exactly the kind of player and person you want to see win the award. Let's face it, how much more unlike Barry Bonds can he be? Howard is a power hitter and a threat at the plate every chance he gets, but what's more is his genuine relationship with the fans of Philadelphia. In his short time here he has done nothing to alienate the fans and everything to re-energize them. The Phillies may not be World Series contenders anytime soon, but Howard, alongside Chase Utley, provides a reason to be interested in the club from April through September, and possibly October in the future.

The Greatest Game Ever Played

Did you see the Michigan-Ohio State regular season finale? I was hesitant to think it would live up to the pregame hype. I was wrong. As much as I may dislike the Buckeyes, I am able to put my prejudice aside to state what a great game that was. And because I have seen it, I am in the party that declares that there should be no rematch for the championship game, unless Michigan finds itself as the only one loss team (or tied with Notre Dame). It may be difficult for the rematch to happen with USC and Florida still in prime position to get their shot at the Buckeyes, and I realize that there is a computer system put in place to determine these results for us.

As a supporter for some form of a playoff system I will always cry fowl at whatever the BCS throws our way, but at the same time, if so many people have a problem with it, then why do their conferences continue to support such a system. If the SEC has a problem with a one loss Florida not playing for the championship, then they should make the first move and pull out of the BCS games all together. Same with the Pac Ten, Big East or whoever. That is the only way a change will ever happen. And because a conference would never give up all the bowl money that would come their way, obviously we will be stuck with this format for quite some time. The BCS does do one thing right though, and that is to create more debates and conversations about college football.


Judgment Day

Friday, November 17, 2006

So ESPN is hyping this Saturday as Judgement Day in college football. I find it hard to argue that when the top two teams in the country are meeting in the last regular season game for a spot in the national championship game and the third team in the BCS is battling an in state rival for the Pac 10 championship and the prospect of playing the winner of Ohio State-Michigan. This is an exciting weekend for college football fans, not just for these two games but for a slew of other rivalry games (Alabama-Auburn is a great one, Harvard-Yale is a classic, Lehigh-Lafayette too) and the start of the division two and three playoffs. College football is great, so let's enjoy the games, the rivalry games, the playoffs, the Heisman and Harlon Hill candidates, and the debates about who should be in the championship game. For the record I say that the loser of Ohio State-Michigan should not play for the championship.

As for the Big East, I don't think they will get a team in the championship game, even if Rutgers does go undefeated. First of all, as good as the Rutgers defense is, I don't know if they can contain Steve Slaton or Pat White nearly enough when they play West Virginia. And make no mistake, even if you shut one down, which is near impossible, you won't shut the other down. And if WVU runs the table the rest of the way they need a lot to happen. Louisville has already squandered their opportunity as well.

And for the Notre Dame fans crying their way to the title game, please. Once again Notre Dame has a very respectable record, but compare their record to a one loss team from the SEC and it is easy to determine which team would be more deserving of a shot in the BCS title game. Like last year, and every year, Notre Dame piles up wins and stats against lesser opposition like Navy, Army, Air Force. If Notre Dame beats USC then we have a debate, but if they end up with the same record as Michigan, how do you make that argument?

Speaking of the SEC, their shot at getting a championship game spot are also slim. They will be big Notre Dame fans next week, and I suppose Ohio State fans this week. But don't expect everything to work out the way the SEC seems to always think it should. Their teams have flaws just like everyone else, plus they may all knock each other out along the way through the SEC championship.

And now this weekends six pack of games for you.

Eagles over Titans
Saints over Bengals
Chargers over Broncos
Penn State over Michigan State
Ohio State over Michigan
West Chester over Bryant



Monday, November 13, 2006

Finally, for the first time all season, I won a football pool. My fantasy team may have been blown out of the water, but it feels good to have won the football pool no matter what happens Monday night.

It was nice to see the Eagles pick up a win over the Redskins, and to see the defense play well. Despite scoring 20 points, I still think there were issues with the offense at key times. Playoff teams score ate least once when they get three consecutive drives starting on the opposing team's half of the field, and do not go three and out. I'd like to see improvement in that situation.

I didn't have it in my blog, but my AIM profile can verify that I went 5-1 in my Weekend Six Pack (I picked the Steelers, Eagles, Bears, Penn State, Shippensburg, and Tennessee who lost to Arkansas).

So finally the hoopla can begin for Ohio State - Michigan. I'd rather see Michigan pull it out, but that's just for pure disdain for the Buckeyes. Either way, I'm looking forward to an awesome game from these two bitter rivals. I guess though, that my BCS dream matchup of Rutgers-Boise State is out of the question.

Is anyone else glad to see college basketball getting started up once again? Who wouldn't be? What with Duke about to be shown 50 times this year once more, even though they only play 30 some games, ESPN will find a way to give us more and more Duke. Even though I suppose it's a little late, I'll be putting together my thoughts on some college basketball of local interest in the coming week, so stay tuned.

The more I see, the more I'm confirming my belief that the Flyers really just aren't any good. I'm thinking more and more that they do stink and they can't turn it around to the way the Flyers are accustomed. New rules, new league, same old Flyers. Doesn't quite work.

Remember when the Sixers were undefeated? That was a nice week. Now they're battling it out for the 8th seed. It's a good thing there's a lot of basketball to play!


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