Saturday, December 06, 2008

Bruins Get Slaughtered

No surprises here.  Although, for a moment there, when the Bruins took a roughing the kicker penalty on fourth and 17, I thought I was watching an Illinois game.  Those types of penalties pretty much killed the Illini season this year.

The UCLA season basically comes down to the offensive line.  I don't care how good your skill players are.  If you can't block anyone, you're not going to be successful.  The Bruins could have had John Elway, Jerry Rice, and Eric Dickerson in their prime, and it wouldn't have made a difference.  They simply could not block anyone all season.  That's an issue that will take maybe another season or two before it's really top notch, though I expect the line to be better next season.  Still, it's disappointing.  UCLA is not going to be competitive week to week until they have a decent offensive line.  We all knew that was an issue going into the season, and we can't be surprised with the way thing turned out.

Speaking of the Illini, they kicked the living crap out of Georgia today at the UC (which I watched at a bar, but didn't see in person for reasons I won't go into here). They finished the game on a 22-0 run.  This U of I basketball team actually may be fun to watch this year. It's looking more and more like Sean Pruitt and Brian Randle were more trouble than they were worth.  Demtri McCamey is playing well most of the time.  Mike Tisdale and Mike Davis are really helping with the scoring inside, as is Dominique Keller.  And Alex Legion is available in a couple weeks.  These guys could actually make the tournament.  It's fun to be an Illini fan again!

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Hall of Fame

I really don't care all that much about the baseball hall of fame, but if I had a vote, my ballot this year would list:
  • Bert Blyleven
  • Rickey Henderson
  • Alan Trammel
  • Tim Raines
That's it.  I'd give a lot of though to McGwire, Lee Smith, and Andre Dawson.  But those four would probably be it.  

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Did you know I still write about sports?

Me neither. Another bout of laziness. Anyway, I got a not from one of my most loyal readers, Anonymous, about the upcoming slaughter at the Rose Bowl. Specifically, he asks about this item about Pete Carroll deciding to go with U$C's red jerseys this weekend, an NCAA no-no.

I doubt I have to explain it, but the short version is that when both teams played at the Coliseum, UCLA and U$C used to wear their colors (home uniforms), since they were really both at their home stadium. Sometime thereafter, the NCAA passed a rule that says one team must wear white under penalty of one timeout per half.

Over the years, the idea of having both UCLA and U$C wear their home jerseys has been discussed, but nobody ever wanted to go through with it. There was talk of the actual home team burning a timeout per half to even things up, but it never came to pass.

But the era of two teams in home jerseys is back. Carroll will bring the trojans out in their red unis. The NCAA has since caved (a bit), and will now penalize the visiting team only one time out. Rick Neuheisel has announced that he'll use a timeout early in the first half to level the playing field. And

Really, they could probably take away all of U$C's time-outs and give UCLA about 15 per half and it wouldn't make a difference. As long as your offense scores 28 points for the other team, it probably doesn't matter how many time-outs you have, or how many your opponent doesn't have. I know the game from a few years ago should give me hope, but I just can't see the Bruins being competitive on Saturday (and no, the basketball team doesn't play on Saturday). And is this case of Pete Carroll saying "we don't need time-outs to beat UCLA"? Sure it is. But he's kind of a dick, so it's not surprising. That doesn't mean that he isn't right.

Personally, I think it's dumb rule. Who cares if one team is wearing white? Sure, it's a problem if two teams have similar colors, but just make a rule that says a team has to wear an alternate color when they share a primary color with the home team. There's really nothing holding this rule in place aside from the NCAA not wanting to spend time granting schools waivers. A couple years ago, Illinois wore their orange basketball jerseys at the Hall against Wisconsin, and with the small, not so great T.V.s at the Parkway (R.I.P. - man, that was a great bar) it was hard to tell the teams apart. So just don't let them do that when the colors are similar. Problem solved.

I think under different circumstances, it would be fun. Unfortunately, I don't this game will be very fun.

I Cherish With Fondness the Day That I Met Them

The latest band I can't stop listening to is Los Campesinos! I wasn't really excited when I wrote that. The exclamation point is actually part of the name, and the name of each of their members, who are Aleksandra Campesinos!, Ellen Campesinos!, Gareth Campesinos!, and so on.

This is another band from Wales, which produced probably my favorite currently existing band, the Super Furry Animals. They are very poppy, and very energetic, and infectuous. I will be seeing them live in February when they come to the Logan Square Auditorium. Also, new Song of the Day from your truly, which is a good place to start. If you like the music I like, you'll be hooked about 15 seconds into the first song embedded below. Enjoy:

Broken Heartbeats Sound Like Breakbeats

You, Me, Dancing

My Year in Lists