Monday, March 30, 2009

Just the Bengals being the Bengals ...

As reported by ESPN this afternoon:

CINCINNATI -- Bengals receiver Chad Ocho Cinco was absent from the start of the team's offseason program Monday, quarterback Carson Palmer said.

I don't think even the Cincinnati Sizzle would want Ocho Stinko on their roster at this point. 

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Hello, Mrs. Upset

Hello, Mrs. Upset, we’ve been expecting you.

The upsets keep on coming in the women’s bracket and I, for one, couldn’t be happier. Following the first round of upsets, the second round provided some other notable top 25 teams going down.

Purdue took out North Carolina, a three-seed in the tourney and ranked 11 overall. Rutgers romped over two-seed Auburn (and I stupidly thought this game would be a good one.)

But the big news, of course, was sixth ranked Duke, the one-seed in the Berkeley bracket, losing to Michigan State. Duke looked soft against Michigan State, working far around the perimeter, unable to get to the basket. It was all compounded by the fact that the Dookies didn’t make a single shot for the last seven and a-half minutes of action. Ladies, you cannot win when you do not score. It is an immutable law of physics. Or something.

It also means that Maryland is the only ACC team remaining, the practical upshot of which is that my pal, henceforth known here as U.Conn Fan, is ecstatic. EX-Static.

It also sets up some great games in the Sweet 16.

Baylor sneaked by the South Dakota State Jackrabbits on a last half-second shot by Kelli Griffin to win. Seriously, the clocked showed 0.5 when she let the shot go. Coach Kim Mulkey, who had been hospitalized with the gleets (kidney stones; also a shameless Deadwood reference) the day before the game, was on the sidelines for this one. Now they get to take on Louisville and the Cardinals' silent assassin, Angel McCoughtry, who had 28 points and 8 boards in their win over LSU. This game figures to be epic.

Meanwhile, Pitt takes on Oklahoma and Ben Roethlisberger’s sister, Carlee. Pitt struggled against the running Catholics of Gonzaga, but they can play with anybody (well, anybody but U.Conn) and it’s possible Coach B and Shavonte Zellous have a little magic left in them. They’ll have to fight both the Sooners and a hostile crowd in Oklahoma City if they want to make Courtney Paris reimburse the university for her tuition. (

Meanwhile somebody woke up Rutgers. Come on, guys, didn’t I tell you not to wake the sleeping giants of Piscataway? Now coach C. Vivian Stringer has Kia Vaughn playing like she did a few years ago when they made a run to the finals and got Don Imus canned for calling them ... nevermind.

Meanwhile, in the Trenton bracket, the Connecticut Huskies keep rolling and the best reason to watch them is to see if they can complete the perfect season. If not, sir Geno himself has said that the story of the 2009 season will be the Huskies losing. I tend to agree with King Auriemma that, in women’s hoops circles, a U.Conn loss would be right up there with the New England Patriots finishing 18-1.

Of a side note, yesterday, two days after Tennessee’s first first-round loss, The Summitt had her team practicing. I expect that she will continue to do so right through the end of the school year or as along as she’s allowed to under NCAA guidelines. Don’t think for a minute that’s not what she spent Monday doing - looking into just what the legal limits are for how hard she can ride these girls. They’d be better off in Marine Corp. boot camp right now.

Ladies and Gentlemen, Your 2009 Pittsburgh Pirates

"A 2-month-old is back in the arms of her parents and the wife of a top Pittsburgh Pirates minor league prospect is suspected of taking the infant from a health clinic outside Tampa, authorities said Tuesday."

Not to be callous, but perhaps she could have kidnapped some left handed pitching talent, too? And a clean up hitter? Just saying.

"Amalia Tabata Pereira, 43, ... is the wife of Jose Tabata, 20, an outfielder and one of the top three prospects for the Pirates ..."

Okay, so she's old and she's a potential felon. What's your point exactly?

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Smiley Says: It would be a lot more interesting if they shot at each other

Fort Worth, Tex. (March 16, 2009) - The University of West Virginia took home the overall title March 14 at the 2009 NCAA Rifle National Championships

After blowing up my basketball bracket, at least those Hooplehead Mountaineers are champs at something.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Oh, How the Mighty Have Fallen

Down goes Frazier! Down goes Frazier! Or, more precisely, the Tennessee Lady Volunteers were bounced from the NCAA tournament last in the first round. Up is down, black is white, cats and dogs sleeping together. I’m talking about complete anarchy here.

Ball State’s victory over the mighty Vols is a wonderful thing for women’s hoops in general. It is monumental because it marks the beginning of real depth of field in the women’s game. Finally. We may look back on this game as the moment when the women’s game went "mad," too.

For the record, I don’t hate Tennessee and I have a genuine soft spot for her high holiness, Pat Summitt. A few years ago, while vacationing, I met a journalist from Nashville who covered
sports for one of the local papers and relayed that Summitt was actually a very lovely person. She always found time to give him an interview when he called, often having him meet her while she was having her hair done or getting a mani-pedi, saying, "Tom, I don’t have much time today, but if you meet me at the manicurists, I can give you 30 uninterrupted minutes." I think that’s pretty cool. Besides, I don’t know of any other coach who would don a cheerleader's outfit and sing "Rockytop" at a men’s game, as she did during the 2007-2008 season:

The good news for the women is that 2008's first round featured more upsets than I ever recall: Mississippi State took out Texas, Gonzaga took down Xavier, San Diego State bested DePaul, and Baylor had to go to OT to get past Texas-San Antonio. Still, none is bigger that Ball State over Tennessee.

Cinderella finally showed up at the women’s dance. It’s about time, sweetie.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

A Pittsburgh Legend Eulogized

Longtime Pirates and Penguins Organist, Vince Lascheid, remembered for PittsburghDish:

Women's Hoops for the PC Crowd

Eight Elite Things to say about the Women's NCAA Basketball Tournament at Pittsburgh Dish, below:

Moses and the NCAA Tourney

Why Passover and March Madness are similar religious experiences penned for 'Burbia:

Every Day Runners Are Not as Crazy as You Might Think

Streak Runners, or every day runners, explored for the Trib.