Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Chunky, Funky and Punky

Dance Team

I have no issues with this lady. Chunky? Maybe a little but I do not see the issue or why someone would have an issue.

Ridiculousness Abounds

I am just speechless. First IU prints T-Shirts that say “We’re Back” after they win a non conference home game in December of 2012. Then the team they beat beats them when it counts, in a game that was a great college basketball like the non con game in December.

Next IU cuts down the nets after a home loss because they clinched a tie for the B10 title A tie (they do end up winning the B10 outright), Next IU’s coach berates an assistant coach from another team, ‘ruining the IU program” when the person responsible for that is Bobby Knight. Next there is number one seed T-Shirts and then they are bounced in the tournament.

Now if that was not enough The Coach After Eddie gets a tattoo. I just have no idea what to even say about this one. Just when you think you have seen it all you see something else that puts a look on your face like you took an ambien and woke up outside in the street naked (stole that line from Dennis Miller). Rick just needs to grow a line beard now and start listening to rap music (nothing wrong with rap music I have plenty on my I Pod) and he will fit right in with their fan base.

At this point I would fully support the banner in Rupp Arena for him and one Richie Farmer comes down. Both are an embarrassment to University of Kentucky and the fan base and it is time to part ways with them both.

It is not that the Coach After Eddie won it all in 2013 (to be honest I cannot understand why he took so long) or that he did it at Louisville but it starts with that he is arrogant enough to think that going to one of Kentucky’s rival schools is OK. I guess his punishment is he has to wake up everyday and look at that face (not his but his grossly reconstructed wife’s).

Woody Hayes would have never went to Michigan, Bo to OSU, Dean Smith to Duke, Coach K to UNC, Bear to Auburn or Dye to Bama because they respect the schools they came from. That is the issue I have with this arrogant SOB.


The College Football Playoff

I like the format. I like that we will be back to games being played on New Years Day. I do not mind the name either, The College Football Playoff. This format continues to make the regular season relevant, very relevant and that is very important to me.

For the SEC, ACC, P12 and B10 the Championship Game will be rewarded with a spot, as they should and it looks like the B12 Conference winner gets a spot in the bowl games.

At the end of the year there are only 4 to 6 teams who deserve a spot in this playoff so the set up is really perfect. Money will cause it to expand but I hope it does not go past eight teams when it does. To me there will always be a team that may be left out but they are left out because of a loss or in a rare occurrence a weak schedule (will not happen often).

This playoff keeps the bowls in place and I think it is important for schools to have a chance to get that extra month of practice, have a place for their fans to travel to play a non traditional opponent.

Here is an excerpt from the New York Times on how it works:


The conference commissioners who spent more than a year putting the playoff together cringe when it's suggested that the new system is BCS 2.0, but to understand how it works, it helps to keep in mind how the Bowl Championship Series worked.

In the BCS, there were four, and then later five games played each season. Only one, the national championship game, had anything to do with the national championship. The others were glitzy bowl games played in showcase stadiums that — hopefully — had compelling matchups. Six conferences had automatic bids to those games, and other teams could earn automatic entry.

The new system will have a total of seven games, including two national semifinals and a final that will determine the national champion. The four other games will be glitzy bowl games played in showcase stadiums that — hopefully — will have compelling matchups. There will no longer be automatic bids for six conference champions, as was the case for the BCS. Now five conferences (the Big Ten, Big 12, SEC, ACC and Pac-12) each have guaranteed a spot for their conference champion in either the semifinals or one of the four glitzy bowls. There will also be a guaranteed spot for the best team from the five FBS conferences (the Big East, soon to be the American Athletic Conference, Mountain West, Sun Belt, Conference-USA and Mid-American).


The selection committee will, for the most part, make the matchups. Foremost it will seed the top four teams in the country, setting up the semifinals. No. 1 will play No. 4. No. 2 will play No. 3. The committee will try as best it can to avoid giving the lower-seeded team a geographical advantage. For example, if LSU is seeded fourth the committee is unlikely to let the Tigers play a semifinal in New Orleans.

The selection committee will also set some of the matchups in the glitzy bowls, with a priority on getting as many highly ranked teams as possible into the games.

But this is important: when the Rose Bowl does not host a semifinal it will always be Big Ten vs. Pac-12. The Sugar Bowl in years it does not host a semifinal will always be Southeastern Conference vs. Big 12. The Orange Bowl in the years it does not host a semifinal will always be Atlantic Coast Conference vs. either an SEC team, a Big Ten team or Notre Dame.


None. Unlike the BCS, which capped the number of teams from a conference at two, in the new system there is no limit to how many teams a league can put in the two semifinals or the other bowls. Four SEC teams? Sure, why stop there.


The semifinals will rotate through six bowl games: the Rose (Pasadena), Orange (Miami), Sugar (New Orleans), Fiesta (Glendale, Ariz.), Cotton (Arlington, Texas) and Chick-fil-A (Atlanta). When those games don't host a semifinal, they will put on one of the glitzy bowls.

The championship game will be bid out like the Super Bowl and move all over the country. The first one will be played at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas, also home of the Cotton Bowl.

5. WHEN?

Three games will be played back-to-back-to-back on New Year's Eve and there will be another tripleheader on New Year's Day. Adjustments will be made if Dec. 31 or Jan. 1 falls on a Sunday so as to not conflict with the NFL.

The championship game will always be played on a Monday, at least a week after the semifinals.

The first season the semifinals will be in the Rose and Sugar bowls on Jan. 1, 2015. The Rose will kickoff around 5 p.m. EST. The Sugar around 8:30 p.m. EDT.

The championship game in Texas will be played Jan. 12, and kickoff around 8:30 p.m.

The Rose and Sugar bowls will always be played on New Year's Day, so in most seasons the semifinals will be played on New Year's Eve.

6. TV

All these games will be shown on ESPN. It has reportedly paid about $7.2 billion for the entire package.


About 85 percent of it will go to the Big Five conferences. The other five will split the rest, but don't feel too badly for them. Most will be making about five times the amount they made with the BCS.


The idea was to make it similar to the one that puts together the NCAA basketball tournament, made up of athletic directors and conference commissioners. But make no mistake, this will be much tougher to put together, and the commissioners know that.

"This is an issue of considerable complexity and given how much time we have until the playoff begins, we're in no rush," BCS executive director Bill Hancock said Thursday, the final of three days of meetings at a resort hotel in the Rose Bowl's backyard.

Everything is apparently still up for debate, from who will be on the committee — current or former athletic administrators? — to how many people will be on it — 16? 18? 20? — to what kind of metrics and rankings it will be given to guide decisions.

On to the real topic, recruiting. – By Final Four Ken (AKA Ken Lawson)

First point; there are zero pro prospects on the UL team. My wife typed in “Rick Pitino’s Health” and she found every article written about Ricky P’s affairs.

When Cal was at Memphis I was not happy that one coach was already getting the top players, two or three. Then I started doing some research. If you look at coach K’s roster this year you will discover that every player on his roster was either number 1 or number 2 at his position. This year coach K signed #2, #19 and #20. His technique is a little different that Cal in that he recruits suburban kids. These kids typically stay 3 to 4 years because their families have more resources. Coach K has been doing this every year for the past 32 years and no one says a word. No outrage. No questions about character or cheating.

Next, Roy Williams recruits much like Cal. Roy has been recruiting McDonalds All Americans for a lot longer period of time. Roy has been signing at least two top ten recruits every year. A quick review of the last 5 seasons for Roy reveals that he has started players who have been either number 1 or number 2 at their position. Again, not one word about character or cheating. History shows Roy has been caught on several occasions on the wrong side of the rules. This is not discussed anywhere at all.

Bill Self also recruits very well. Kansas always signs a top class. They don’t get as many. No one talks about an injustice or question how coach Self attracts so much talent to Kansas.

You can make the same case for Billy Donovan. Every year he successfully recruits 3 top ten players. His teams regularly have players who were number 1 or number 2 at their positions. There are zero character questions or out loud complaints about how Billy brings players to his program.

One of the best examples of questionable coaches is the dean of college basketball, Dean Smith. Can you find an explanation for this coach? Again, Dean Smith consistently recruited top recruits for 15 straight years. Were there any questions about Coach Smith’s character or recruiting improprieties? Not one word. If you review his roster you will find more number 1 players than number 2 players on every UNC roster. Under Coach Smith’s great coaching UNC made more final four appearances with less success than any other program. UNC was in every sweet sixteen for 15 straight years. All they have to show are two of the top questionable championships college basketball will ever remember.

Back to coach Calipari. He is outspoken about the one year requirement (his dislike) and yet he is questioned at every turn on every college basketball blog. If you review the last 100 articles regarding college basketball stories you will find at least one negative comment regarding Calipari cheating. The story doesn’t even have to reference Kentucky.

I think Coach Cal gets a bad wrap. Unless you do some research people may continue to question and dislike Coach Cal’s success.

I agree with Final Four Ken on all points! For me I think Dean Smith is still the most over-rated coach in the history of college basketball. To only win two championships with all the talent he had at UNC during his tenure is under achievement at its best. He also held MJ under 20 points a game which to me is next to impossible unless you run the four corners set.

Go Navy

Two weeks ago the Navy Football Team was awarded the Commander in Chief Trophy for the eighth time in ten years. This is a truly great accomplishment for the Middies and a tribute to their players and coaching staff.

If you missed the three games they were truly outstanding last year. The Army Navy game was one of the best in recent memory and in the end I was as sad for the Army Team as I was happy for Navy.

Navy looks to have another great year in 2013. Former starting QB Trey Miller has been moved to slot back as Sophomore Kennan Reynolds has the job locked down. Navy is not very experienced at the Wing Back position so moving Miller out there will help. As for Reynolds he is going set allot of records at Navy. From the Navy Website:

“Reynolds saw action in all 13 games, starting the final eight games of the year. Named the Independent Rookie of the Year by the nationwide media panel responsible for the FBS Independent Player of the Week awards. Help to anchor an offensive unit that finished the year ranked sixth nationally in rushing offense, averaging 278.46 yards per game. Reynolds believed to be just the fifth TRUE freshman to win his first four career starts at quarterback. Notre Dame's Matt LoVecchio won his first seven starts as a true freshman in 2000, USC's Matt Barkley won his first six starts in 2009 and Tim Jefferson of Air Force won his first five starts as a freshman in 2008. “



- The Coach After Eddie to now grow a line beard, pierce his ears, wear a backwards ball cap and clothes that are to big for him to fit in.

- The media is really pushing the gay athlete agenda or the gay agenda period. Who cares? If someone is gay they are gay! I could care less about an athlete or anyone else being gay that is so yesterday’s news. Time to move to something that really matters.

- I cannot be more excited about UK Football.

- I love the Feherty show but I did not watch the Bobby Knight one because F Bobby Knight!

- As I have said before the only Cardinals I care about and whether they win or lose is the one that does not have teeth and sits on a bat and right now needs their bullpen to step up.

- Count me as a fan of golfer Billy Horschel. I think golf needs a bit more emotion at time and he shows it all over the place. Get a bit fired up sometimes!

- Coach After Eddie is like The Player Formally Known As Puljos, love what you did but you will never be legendary in the city you left.

- I think the large schools should form their own division (B10, B12, P12, ACC, SEC and Independents) in football.

I will hang up and listen!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The Masters and The Man

The Master’s

First of all upon further review I think the slow play penalty assessed to the young man was the right call. The problem with this penalty and why it is never called is because what was explained the tour players do to prevent getting a slow play penalty once they are on ‘the clock’ which the young China Man did not know (but his caddie should have).

What the players do when they are put on the clock is this:

1. They slow down.
2. As soon as all the players have teed off on the hole the caddies pick up the pace and to arrive at the ball much quicker.
3. The caddie then checks yardage, wind, etc all before the player arrives and has made the club choice.
4. The player actually slows down their walking pace to allow the caddie to make all the projections.
5. The player that is to hit first gets 60 seconds to strike the ball once they arrive at the ball.
6. The second player has 40 seconds after the first player hits.
7. So the pace of play rule really has no impact.

I really cannot believe how a 14 year old kid handled this situation but that is golf and the golf influence coming through. When a kid learns about etiquette and respect, which are two things golf teaches this is the result you get. Well played young man, well played!  Goes to show what golf can teach a young person and why cities should do more to make the game available to their youth.

As for what happened with Tiger it was the right call. The haters do not think so and I admit at first I thought he should DQ himself but when I learned he was told that it was reviewed and he was OK then the next day something different was decided that is no fault of the player. Had this been anyone else would this have been the same result? Since 90% of participants in a tournament never make TV coverage had one of these players did this it would have never even come up. Had it been McDowell, Couples, Day, Scott, Cabrera the ruling would have been the same. Non issues play on!

As for the Master’s itself it proved once again the tournament starts on the second nine on Sunday. There was a host of people in position to win the tournament and this was one that was won by someone and not given to someone because other players folded.

The putt that Scott made on 18 was huge and then for Cabrera to stuff one in on 18 after watching that from the fairway was just incredible. I loved how Angel showed great respect for Scott when he made the putt and Angel’s emotion on the course during the tournament was truly awesome to watch.

Jason Day once again played a great Master’s but his bogeys on 16 and 17 were his undoing. I loved seeing Freddie and Langer compete as long as they did and great to see Sandy Lyle make the cut also.

Despite some of the controversy it was a great tournament once again.

UK Spring Football

Could the sleeping giant have been awakened? Over 50,000 in the stands for a Spring game at UK just shows how solid the football fan base is despite the lack of success in the SEC. Also proves that UK hired the right person and he has hired the right staff to create a buzz around this program that is like none most people have ever seen (1977 and 2007 come to mind for me).

It is for sure hard to get much out of a Spring Game but I did see some things I liked:

1. UK never huddled on offense one time and they appeared to be very much in sync.
2. The first and second string O Line looked like they have size and some speed.
3. UK spread the field on offense with the linemen spaced wide and lined up with four, five receiver sets on almost every play.
4. They did work in some plays with a fullback or TE in the backfield as a blocker.
5. UK has three solid QB’s and I like the dimension that Jalen Whitlow brings with his ability to run the ball out of the pocked and he threw it well also.
6. There is speed and talent at the wide out positions.
7. Depth at running back.
8. The defense is a work in progress.

UK’s football schedule is tough, tough next year and I do not expect allot of wins but I expect the brand of football will be exciting and they will have and create opportunities to win games. Mark Stoops has momentum and he for sure knows what he is doing and he wants to be in Lexington and that bodes well for UK Football.

I am very excited about next year and the years to follow. Finally a coach with the right idea and a coach that is recruiting beyond expectations already to this point. He will have to win but he is off to a great start.

Ignorance Abounds

And once again I let the masses demonstrate their intelligence. Stupid people are killing our country! Some of the comments are after an article where UK is picked as the preseason #1 in basketball next year and the other comes from comments made after the Chinese Golf Phenomenon was penalized for slow play at the Master’s. Just goes to show people believe what the want to and do not base much on fact which is what the majority of Americans who have issues, whatever they may be, and have those issues.

Unedited Comments:

I'm very glad Kentucky is preseason number 1. Put as much pressure on them as possible. I have them going farther than this year - I have them in the semifinals next year...of the NIT. Assuming, of course, they can avoid Robert Morris.

UK will always be #1 at the beginning of the season, because they buy up all the best one-and-done recruits. On paper, they always have the best team going in. But Calipari isn't doing himself any favors in his failure to develop upperclassmen and role players into leaders. Luckily, in basketball, the best teams get to play and determine who is the best at the end of the year, when it really counts.

This will be a team that starts out #1, maintains its top-5 status thanks to a weak SEC, and then implodes come March due to...

1. A bunch of guys more interested in draft status then winning. Oh yeah, did you see the MCds interviews. They all think they could beat Jordan, in his prime, 1 on 1. So, don't worry, these guys have their head on straight. No way on earth that maybe they could believe their own hype a little too soon. Because as we all know, if you are a top ranked high school player, you ALWAYS pan out. The fact that these players think they are pretty much assured ti win the title without having played a game only helps assure their gigantic failure.

2. A lack of GOOD experience. Sure, Cauley and Pythrees return. So what? GP even contradicts himself when he champions the experience they bring back, but later says this group was "not as good" as the Davis class. Oh yeah, and they didn't even get to play in the Dance. This team has the threat of dysfunction all over it.

3. They are only better on paper - IF you believe that high school rankings matter. Again, you contradict yourself, GP. Its a cop out to say last years class was not as good AFTER THE FACT, despite their #3 ranking. And its stupid to then do the same thing this year due to this years class. Duke, Arizona, Louisville, UNC, Ohio State - they will all be deep and talented, with more REAL experience. This has EPIC fail written all over it.

Just like your last name, UK withered! What a joke they were this year. I can tell you this, as a season ticket holder of the Lakers and Clippers, please do Noel a favor and tell him to stay at little ole UK and the college game. He will get destroyed in the NBA. Shot blocking is important, but it's not what makes pro players significant and a pro fan base has far higher expectations than good ole rah rah blue nation pulling for their little one and done operation and bragging about stupid things like catlanta. Wait, you were not in catlanta, the superior team in the state of Kentucky was in catlanta winning a Championship. Ouch! Rah rah UK!

This is so much nonsense it's pathetic. UK will not win another title under Cal. PERIOD. It sure is funny how getting run out of the gym against Robert Morris has had such an affect on the frontal lobe of all things UK. As a reminder, the loss to mighty Robert Morris was in the NIT 1st ROUND! Not the NCAA 1st round. THE NIT 1st ROUND in a High School sized gym! The UK fan base and the sports prognosticators are completely delusional and so caught up in the hype of McDonald's All Americans that they forget there's this thing called chemistry, something a crop of Freshmen will never be able to establish enough in 1 season to contend with more experienced teams. It's just not going to happen. The UK team that won last year had significant veterans, this years team will not leave significant veterans on the roster next year. Noel was a bust when looking back at all the hype he received and he will not even hang around for another year (although he should stay for all 4). Keep dreaming UK while the Tar Heels prepare to hang another National Championship next year. Also, don't forget, the Heels are 22-13 against your Wildcats and that number will continue to widen now that the series will be starting back. Remember this. You lost in the 1st round of the NIT this year. You are not worthy. PERIOD!

***HERE'S PARRISH At his "best" Again !! A Few Days Removed From LOUISVILLES outrageous Year & National Championship.. NO Great Coverage or story lines About the Cards (except of course . players leaving).. No NEW Final Rankings for THIS YEAR acknowledging Uof L & others .. BUT RATHER CBS FRONT PAGE Pictures & Article ABOUT ..His buddy & Next years ridiculous Predictions ABOUT ..YEP--You guessed it .. KENTUCKY !! Couldn't Go a week without Drudging up This NIT teams Name & story On UK .. trying to OVERSHADOW LOUISVILLE 'S Magnificent Achievements & Year !! GARY -- SHAME on You & I really Hope your not so subtle allegiance is Properly Rewarded !! UK -This Year - S^*T THE BED & Is NOT Newsworthy .. LOUISVILLE IS !!! YET ..You create some "Fantasy" about NEXT year already to Thrust Pay pal & his Crew on Front Page .. Absolutely Shameful !! **OH-- Your "jokes" about the Uof L Womens Team on CBS TV few Nights back WERE NOT Appreciated & In VERY BAD TASTE although consistant with your Distain For Rick & the CARDINALS !! THEY HAD AN AWESOME YEAR !!! RE-THINK your "stuff" & stop being so very Transparent & Biased !!! ** THIS WEEK-- WE should NOT Be reading about what a few High School Kids MIGHT Do next year at UK .. BUT Rather ... What a few High School Kids who at UofL ..this year .. IN FACT--DID DO !!! IS THIS DIFFICULT ???

If this was a white kid from anywhere USA they would never have imposed this penalty...the old school Masters Members are racist, they still can't stand the Idea that Tiger is a member.

The good old boys don't want a #$%$ in the Masters.

Tianlang Guan is the MOST interesting player in this "Masters," that continues to prove Augusta National a DISGRACE! WHAT else can you call it? RACISM! THINK! The kid would be tied with Mickelson!! Augusta National spokesman Steve Ethun said there were NO records of the penalty EVER being assessed during the Masters. EVER! LAST player penalized for slow play at a major=Gregory Bourdy at 2010 PGA Championship at Whistling Straits!!! FIRE ALL of these officials NOW before the PGA becomes a TOTAL JOKE!!!

This little kid is trying to cheat his way to the top and should be deported.

I'm sure the penalty wasn't unilaterally imposed by the "good ol' boys" who run Augusta. It presumably was imposed only after it had been blessed by the PGA officials who are all over the place during this tournament.

just shows the fools running the Masters r FOOLS!!! really hurt the kid just can u can!!! wow total jack *^$( running the place!!!

Phil and the others crying racism by Southerners need to check the membership of the club.

For instance, I don't believe Bill Gates is a Southerner however he is a club member.

Just saying--------------

But then they allow the wife cheating colored boy play.

So many great golfers and the Masters waste a spot on a child from China? Put an age limit of at least 18 on all PGA tournaments. And do you really want a bunch of no name Asian golfers on the tour? Look what it has done for the LPGA which barely even exists due to the irrelevance of Korean golfers which has chased away most all sponsors and greatly reduced the number of tournaments.

some of the good ol' boys had to let blacks play but a teenage chinese kid nope

The rednecks there don't like blacks, women and apparantly asians. Welcome to the Old South youngster.

My Tribute to The Man

My grandfather said Stan was the greatest ball player he ever saw. Stan is by far the most under appreciated player in the history of the game.

I give you a great New York Times Article about Stan Musial.

Back in the late winter of 1941, a skinny, 20-year-old pitcher named Stan Musial showed up at the St. Louis Cardinals' spring training camp with an aching arm and diminishing hopes that he would ever fulfill his youthful dream of making it to the big leagues.

Musial, who died Saturday at the age of 92, had come up as an erratic, wild-throwing southpaw -- so wild, in fact, that a scouting report at one point urged his release -- in the Cards' minor league system in 1938. His prospects grew only darker in August 1940 in Orlando, Fla., when he was chasing a fly ball in the outfield and his cleats got caught in the turf. He fell hard on the point of his left shoulder, the one to which his pitching arm was attached. With his shoulder injured, he lost the pop on his fastball, and Cardinals hitters began teeing off on him. He later remembered throwing one pitch to his boyhood idol, Cards star center fielder Terry Moore, and then hearing the crack of the bat and watching the ball carry out of the park.

Discouraged as he was, the young man did not quit. As fate would have it, on a day Cards legendary general manager Branch Rickey was watching an intrasquad game in Hollywood, Fla., Musial himself hit a ponderous home run over the right-field fence. This turned out to be, for the Cards as a team and baseball in general, a wonderfully propitious moment. Musial's arm never did completely heal; but at the end of camp, when Rickey heard some sentiment among coaches to send the kid packing, he waved those voices away.

 No one in the annals of the game knew young talent like the Mahatma, as Rickey was known. He saw the kind of potential in young Musial that he one day would see in Jackie Robinson, when he was general manager of the Dodgers and sought to integrate baseball; in a minor league outfielder in Montreal named Roberto Clemente, whom he shamelessly picked from the Dodgers' pocket after he left Brooklyn for Pittsburgh; and in an aspiring young shortstop named Bill Mazeroski, whom he saw turn a few plays at second base, also when he was general manager of the Pirates. "Don't move him," Rickey told Maz's coaches. "He stays at second." The Mahatma thus launched Maz on a career that turned him into a fielder baseball historian Bill James has called "probably the greatest defensive player of all time."

So when Rickey heard talk that sore-armed Stanley ought to be released, he ordered the kid sent to the Cards' Class C affiliate in Springfield, Mo. "Don't let him go," the Mahatma said. "Put him in the outfield and see if he can hit."

This was, as things turned out, a declaration worthy of enshrinement in the National Baseball Hall of Fame, right next to the plaque honoring Musial himself. Indeed, over the next two decades, his physical presence in the batter's box left a lasting impression on all who saw him stroke a baseball with a wooden bat.

His stance was singular. Musial stood slightly crouched -- "I started to crouch because that way I could guard the plate better," he once said -- with his bat straight up, his feet close together and his shoulders turned so far to the left that the pitcher, Lord help him, could read the "6" on Musial's back. He had learned as a kid how to go with a pitch and how to slap the ball to left field, a talent that gave him an enormous edge and, as can be imagined, drove opposing fielders to distraction unto despair.

Managers forever were flummoxed as to how to defend against him. Early in the season of 1951, not long after 20-year-old Willie Mays first was called up to the New York Giants, manager Leo Durocher met with the young slugger to go over the opposing hitters for that day. The Giants were playing the St. Louis Cardinals, and Durocher briefed Mays on the Cards' lineup, telling Mays how to play the first hitter, then the second hitter and then the fourth hitter. "What about number three?" Mays asked. "The third hitter is Stan Musial," Durocher told him. "There is no advice I can give you about him."

What complicated things for Durocher and fellow skippers was the fact that Musial was fast on his feet. Stretching singles into doubles or doubles into triples, he could hit another gear on the basepaths, prompting one manager to liken Musial at full gallop to "a wounded turkey." They nicknamed him the "Donora Greyhound," a reference to his hometown in Pennsylvania.

Blessed with such an array of talents, Musial became not only one of the dozen or so greatest hitters in the annals of baseball, but he also was clearly the finest left-handed batter who ever graced a box in the National League. In the course of his surpassing career, he hung up such prodigious numbers that James, the eminent guru and muncher of baseball stats, ranked him at the end of the 20th century as the 10th greatest player of all time.

In his 2000 edition of Baseball Abstract, James put Musial behind Babe Ruth (1), who was followed in order by Honus Wagner, Willie Mays, Oscar Charleston, Ty Cobb, Mickey Mantle, Ted Williams, Walter Johnson and Josh Gibson. Musial was next, directly ahead of such indubitable lights as Tris Speaker (11), Hank Aaron (12), Joe DiMaggio (13) and Lou Gehrig (14), with Mike Schmidt (21), Rogers Hornsby (22) and Frank Robinson (24) further back.

Musial retired at the end of the 1963 season, but nearly a half-century later, he still is second in total bases with 6,134, behind Aaron (6,856) and just ahead of Mays (6,066). No active ballplayer is even close, and Musial left the game well ahead of Cobb, Ruth, Pete Rose and Carl Yastrzemski.

In the realm of all-time leaders, Musial is fourth in hits with 3,630, sixth in RBIs with 1,951, ninth in runs scored with 1,949, third in extra-base hits with 1,377, third in doubles with 725 and tied for 19th (with Rabbit Maranville) in triples, although again, it is only fair to point out that 10 of those ahead of him in three-baggers began their careers when triples were as plentiful as buffalo, and no less endangered, in the years immediately following Custer's Last Stand.

His ratio of at-bats to strikeouts also is among the best in the history of the majors. Here is one you would not have guessed: Musial had 3,266 more at-bats than Williams but 13 fewer strikeouts (696 for Musial, 709 for Williams), and Williams owned a pair of the most famously discriminating batting eyes in the game. And while Musial ranks 28th in home runs, tied with Willie Stargell at 475, his true place in that pantheon is difficult to fathom in the wake of the recent orgies of chemical enhancement.

All that said, the combined weights of the Musial numbers bear James out, and they certainly give powerful affirmation to those many voices along the Mississippi Valley that have been crying for years that Stan was The Man. So it always has been something of a mystery why Musial -- as generous and decent a man off the field as he was brilliant and dependable on it -- has spent so many years sunk in the shadows of baseball history, a giant often either forgotten or dismissed whenever the sports-talk junkies summon the names of baseball's finest hitters and all-around players.

This unwarranted neglect has become manifest at the game's grassroots. When Sports Illustrated had fans pick a 20th century all-star team at the end of the millennium, they voted Musial 10th among outfielders. ESPN television failed to put him among the top 50 athletes of the 20th century. When MasterCard and professional baseball assembled their All-Century team in 1999, the voting masses virtually ignored Musial; ultimately, an "oversight committee" slipped him onto the roster.

No doubt these embarrassing instances of poor judgment can be traced, at least in part, to the town Musial called home. He played baseball out of St. Louis, not New York, and he did so mostly in an era when that burg was as far west as baseball reached, on the near edge of the American wilderness known as the Great Plains. No one wrote songs about him. No one penned lyrics invoking his name. No character in a Hemingway novel ever mused about him. And no one made a movie of his life. He often visited the media capital of America, but he never was a creation or a creature of it. Musial had neither the flair nor the flamboyance of Willie Mays. No basket catches by Stanley.

He did not crush 500-foot home runs over the white walls of the Bronx, recalling the titanic shots of Babe Ruth and Jimmie Foxx.

No swilling beer from a bucket for Musial. No swallowing hot dogs in two bites, no open roadsters, no raccoon coats. Nor did Stanley have Mickey Mantle's awesome speed and ambidextrous power. He never got into a single drunken brawl at the Copacabana.

In fact, through the 3,026 games he played in his career, he never got kicked out of one. Not a single game. Ken Burkhart umpired scores of St. Louis games behind the plate and said Musial never once complained to him about one of his calls, not even one of those hair-splitting called strikes that might have gone either way.

"In seven years, he never even turned his head to look at me when I was behind the plate," Burkhart said. Nor did he marry the blond movie star with the dress billowing above the subway vent, and he never insisted on being introduced at old-timers' games as "the greatest living ballplayer," although you could make a far stronger case for him than you could for Joe D.

No, Musial married the grocer's daughter from Donora, a shot-and-a-beer mill town that lay some 28 miles south of Pittsburgh, on the banks of the Monongahela River. He grew up, one of a family of eight, in a five-room, wood-frame house at the top of a hill. His father, Lukasz, a Polish immigrant, worked in a zinc factory. A hanging blanket of sulfurous fumes killed all the vegetation on the hill and eventually the old man, too. Lillian Labash, the grocer's daughter, first saw Musial in Palmer Park when he was a 14-year-old lad working as a bat boy for the team of zinc workers managed by a neighbor, Joe Barbao. That day, they were playing another team of blue collars from nearby Monessen. Barbao had run out of pitchers, according to the late sportswriter W.C. Heinz, so he threw young Musial into the fray. Musial pitched six innings and fanned 13 hitters. "Look at that Polish kid pitch against those men," the grocer said to his daughter.

Lillian and Stanley were married five years later -- on his 19th birthday, Nov. 21, 1939 -- when he was making $65 a month pitching for the Cardinals' Class D minor league team in Williamson, W.Va. At 5-foot-10, 175 pounds, Musial always had been able to hit the ball, a skill he had been practicing since he was a boy. "I learned to hit with a broomstick and a ball of tape, and I could always get that bat on the ball," he said.

It did not take Rickey long to learn how right he had been about giving the kid a chance. At Springfield, in just 87 games, Musial hit 26 home runs and had a whopping 94 runs batted in -- a glorious harbinger of his baseball life. After having hit at an equally torrid clip with the Cards' Double-A Rochester club, Musial was home in Donora in mid-September 1941 when he got that unforgettable telegram. It was from Rickey, ordering him to report to the mother club.

"It was really something," Musial told Heinz. "Imagine a 20-year-old kid who starts the year pitching with a sore arm and can't tell if he's gonna make it anywhere in organized ball and ends up …" 
… Stepping into the St. Louis clubhouse for the first time in his life and immediately running into Terry Moore, that outfielder who had been his boyhood idol.  Moore looked at him quizzically. "You look familiar," he said. "I ought to," Musial said. "You hit a homer off me in an exhibition game this spring." "Are you that humpty-dumpty, bum-armed kid?" Moore said. "How'd you get way up here?"

That was the question in the Cards' clubhouse that afternoon, and it took Musial no time at all to answer it. That day against the Boston Braves, in his first major league game, he found himself face to face with a knuckleballer, Jim Tobin. Musial had never seen a knuckler, and he sliced under the first one for a popup out. Tobin later tried to fool the rookie again, fluttering up another knuckler, but this time, Musial lashed it for a double to right, scoring two runs to help win the game 3-2.

Musial was rarely without his harmonica, including at a White House ceremony honoring Hall of Famers in 2001. With Ernie Banks leading the cheers while Juan Marichal and Lou Brock looked on. Musial had 20 hits in 47 at-bats that month, including four doubles and a home run, and ended up hitting .426. He went 6-for-10 in a double-header against the Cubs, leaving Chicago manager Jimmy Wilson to wonder aloud, "Nobody can be that good." Also during that month, the Cards visited the Braves in Boston, and after they left town, the Dodgers showed up, on their way to winning the pennant. Casey Stengel, then the Braves' manager, greeted the Brooklyn writers with this: "Your fellas will win it, but those Cardinals got a young kid in left field that you guys are gonna be writin' about for 20 years."

Leave it to Casey to call that shot, almost to the year. Rarely has baseball seen a more sustained display of excellence, consistency and class than in the 22 years Stanley Frank Musial played baseball. Beyond that brief debut in 1941, he hit no less than .310 for 16 consecutive seasons, a span during which his batting average was .340 and as high as .376 in 1948, his signature year: 230 hits, 46 doubles, 18 triples, 39 home runs, 135 runs, 131 RBIs. It was the year the Phillies' new manager, Eddie Sawyer, was asked what he thought of the National League teams. "Of all the teams I've seen so far," Sawyer said, "Musial is the best."

It also was the year he won one of his seven batting titles and one of his three MVP awards. By then, he was so feared by pitchers that they began to joke about how they pitched to him.

The Brooklyn Dodgers' pinpoint control specialist, Preacher Roe, once said of Musial: "I throw four wide ones to him and then try to pick him off first." "I've had pretty good success with Musial by throwing him my best pitch and backing up third," the Dodgers' Carl Erskine said.

As humble as he was, shy to a fault, Musial felt utterly at home between the chalk lines. No one had more confidence in him than he had in himself. In the 1955 All-Star Game, with the score knotted in the bottom of the 12th inning, Musial came to the plate and was greeted by a very tired Yogi Berra, who was catching that day. "My feet are killing me," Yogi said to Musial. "Relax," Musial said, "I'll have you home in a minute."  He homered into the seats, winning the game. In fact, the homer became one of a record six he hit for the National League in All-Star Games.

Before doubleheaders, shirtless and dressed in only his flannel pants, he would walk around the Cards' clubhouse squeezing the handle of his bat and saying, to no one in particular, "Stanley could have 10 hits today. It is possible for Stanley to have 10 hits. Ten hits for Stanley!" In fact, in one doubleheader, he hit a record six home runs. And as often as he hurt the Dodgers, they never booed him in Brooklyn, where he became so inspired he seemed to enter a whole new zone as a hitter.

"There was always excitement in Brooklyn," Musial once said. "My adrenaline was always flowing in Ebbets Field. The tension, the atmosphere, the fights -- you knew something was going to happen. … The ballpark was small, so the seats were close to the field, and you could hear just about anything anybody said."

Musial heard plenty in those summers of 1948 and 1949, when he hit .522 in Ebbets Field and appeared, like "The Natural," able to do almost anything he wanted with the bat. It was where they coined his other nickname. "I'd come to the plate and the fans would say, 'Here comes that man again, that man.' A sportswriter picked it up and it became 'Stan the Man.'"

It also was the era when Jackie Robinson integrated baseball, and with Robinson's arrival, the game became rife with rumors that some players were planning to boycott any games involving the Dodgers. The hottest of these beds was St. Louis, where there were a number of Southern players. But Musial openly backed Robinson, and the Cards never voted to strike. Musial had played with and against blacks in high school, and among his teammates was Buddy Griffey -- later the father of Ken Griffey Sr. and the grandfather of Ken Griffey Jr. "I didn't give it a second thought," Musial said.

Indeed. When another black player, Joe Black, came up to play in Brooklyn five years later, in 1952, racial slurs still were being heard in baseball. In one game, with Black on the mound, Musial was in the box and set to hit when he heard one of his own teammates shout from the dugout, "Don't worry, Stan. With that dark background on the mound, you shouldn't have any trouble hitting the ball." After the game, Black was dressing in the Brooklyn clubhouse when Musial sidled up to him. "I'm sorry that happened," Musial said quietly. "But don't you worry about it. You're a great pitcher. You'll win a lot of games."

His baseball prowess aside, Musial was first all-time in decency, affability and charm. He had endless patience for signing autographs, and if he happened to spot a table of little old ladies at a restaurant, celebrating someone's 80th, he would pull from a pocket his well-used harmonica and serenade them with a chorus of "Happy Birthday." He would follow this with a few bars of "The Wabash Cannonball" and finish the show by playing "Take Me Out to the Ball Game."

Musial always described himself as a retiring man who shied from public appearances, particularly if they involved giving speeches, but he was perfectly at home in social gatherings and loved to party. For years, he was the central schmoozer and greeter at his famous St. Louis restaurant, Stan Musial and Biggie's, serving as the city's informal host in the same way Jack Dempsey served New York from a table at his famous Times Square eatery. He was no shirking violet when it came to public celebrations. One day in 1986, in the week before the Bears-Patriots Super Bowl in New Orleans, a young sportswriter was sitting in a bar in the French Quarter when, suddenly, a conga line came dancing off the street and through the bar. It snaked past the table of the sportswriter, who thought he had to be seeing things through a beery mist. There was Musial, then 65 years old, dancing at the head of the line as he blew the throbbing conga tune from his harmonica.

By this time, of course, Musial long had been an institution in St. Louis -- not only as a Hall of Fame baseball player, but as a roving, sometimes dancing, ambassador for the Cards' franchise, his adopted city and the sport of professional baseball. He visited his father's native Poland several times since 1970, including once to meet with the Polish Olympic Committee, which was striving to build a ballclub that would be competitive on the international baseball stage, and another time to attend the dedication of two Little League fields named in his honor and to pass out 250 gloves to all those young, aspiring Musials in cities like Wroclaw and Jaslo. Musial stayed with the Cards long after his playing days were over and was the team's general manager when it won the 1967 World Series.

In many ways, Musial more than served the Cardinals. He was the franchise. A formidable statue of Musial was erected in front of Busch Stadium, and the inscription had it right: "Baseball's perfect warrior, baseball's perfect knight."

He was, and will always be, Stan the Man.

- Bob Wolff, who called some of the greatest games in baseball history including Don Larsen’s World Series perfect game has not donated over 1400 audio and video recordings consisting of over 1000 hours of stuff that includes interviews with Ruth, Cobb, Robinson, Jim Thorpe and Tris Speaker just to name a few to the Libray of Congress. They are digitizing the collection and will make most of it avaialble on line. I listened to Ty Cobb interview pretty awesome!

- Angel Cabera is a great example of someone who has taken responsibility for his own life. Quits school at ten years old to become a caddie, basically lives on the streets and is now a successful professional golfer!

- When will racisim and sexism not be a topic for the media in relation to the Masters? When they stop talking about it. This has all passed and Augusta National has moved forward. Now the pundits on critcizing Condi Rice for joining. Please! It is a private club that membership is by invitation only and there is nothing wrong with that at all.

- Bob Costas, shut the hell up and be a Sports Reporter and great baseball Play by Play guy!

- Redbirds need a closer of it is going to be a long season!

- I loved Fehrety kept breaking it off in Faldo all day on Saturday and Sunday. I like Faldo but he is wrong this time!

- The only issue I have with the long putter is that the people using it have an advantage over themselves because they cannot putt the other way. This is why I support the ban on anchoring the putter. Can Adam Scott win a major without the broom handle? The Adam Scott who did not use the broom handle cannot as it appears.

- My wife said Adam Scott looks like he is smelling shit all the time and if you take a watch of him his facial expressions lead you to believe that is the case. Good guy though and happy for his win.

- Had a Chickenhead tell me today, after I offered congratulations, yea and it was all started in Rupp Arena...  What is that supposed to mean?  Has no significance to me but does for some reason to her and the ass wipe Pat Forde. 

- I have World Series Champion items in my basement and UK National Championships items also.  This is where this stuff should be not hanging from your car or car windows, etc. 

I will hang up and listen!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Basketball Is Over, Now We Are Cooking!

The UK Basketball Season

Yahoo sports writer Pat Forde wrote that UK basketball was as it's lowest point since probation in of 90 and 91.  Not true Dumb ass, not true! 

UK basketball was at that point five years ago when the BCG mess unfolded over two seasons.  Mitch Barnhart somehow managed to keep his job despite this mess but redeemed himself by bringing in Cal. 

I do not remember Issel playing for UK but I do have memories of the year after he left UK thanks to my Mom who introduced me to UK basketball.  This puts me at my 40th anniversary of UK basketball and in that time there have been two low points for me.  Ready Eddies last year as coach was a disaster as was his entire time at UK.  Eddie was battling the same demons that BCG battled when he was at UK where both took a job that was just bigger then they were.  So in that 40 years I can literally say there have been two low points or two years out of forty or three when you count this year.  There have been some seasons that have ended in disappointment but that does not mean the entire season was a disappointment.   

UK has a bad group of kids this year who just never embraced each other or the coaches.  This is going to happen from time to time especially in the society of today where everyone gets or expects a trophy.  All in all I they are good kids but obviously Harrow and Goodwin were just not real coachable.  Goodwin showed spurts of some great talent and if he learns to play defense he can be an average NBA player so time will tell.  Harrow, unfortunately, is just a head case but I wish the kid the best of luck for him and his family. 

So what does this season me for the UK now and in the future?  Nothing, zero, zip, nada.  Programs, all programs, have ups and downs.  UK had a three year run of up, up and up and had they not run into a hot, hot WVA team and UConn the next year they could have won one more in that three year run.  A year like this year is a good humbling experience for the coaches, players and the fan base.  You cannot coach chemistry only try to do things to encourage chemistry. 

The UK  basketball program is in fine shape and is in good hands with Coach Cal.  They have a great group of kids coming in next year and they will blend well with the current group.  UK will be back next year and this past season will be long forgotten.  GBB!

UK Football

As I have said for many years, even before Mumme showed up, if you want to compete in football in the SEC at UK you are going to have to be willing to do something different vs. trying to play smash mouth football.  Curry tried it and it did not work.  Brooksy tried it and they were competitive but he never got over the hump.  Why? 

First thing is depth.  UK will never have the depth of Bama, Florida, Auburn, Tennessee and LSU.  Those schools are able to recruit at a different level and they are truly in the South which gives them an advantage to start. 

Facilities.  UK is planning to make massive improvements over the next several years to their football facilities and with some success on the field this will be some great momentum for the program and hopefully create a better environment for the program. 

Coaches.  UK is not going to ever be able to hire a name coach who is an established and successful head coach so the job needs to become a stepping stone job.  Enter Mark Stoops!  Great hire for UK and hire I just did not think they could make.  The ideal coach who is a defensive minded coach who brought in someone to run the exact offensive scheme you have to run at UK to compete.  The excitement around this program is like nothing I have seen in my 40 years of following UK football! 

How much success can Stoops have?  How long will he stay if he gets UK over the hump and wins eight or nine games?  All great questions but for a fan I am not going to focus on anything but the present and enjoy the moment.  He seems like a great guy and is embracing the school and the community. 

The Air Raid attack is back and UK is going to play fast and that is very, very important from an opportunity to out scheme the great teams in the SEC. 

  • No one can believe that I watched a total of about 30 mins of the NCAA Tournament.  Just no interest.  Comes down to this, if it is not the Redbirds, Bats, Navy Midshipmen, UK, Bama or SEC Football I am not paying attention. 
  • To all the IU fans who say Crean is doing it the right way how is that working out for you?  Two early entries, you said that would not happen, and Crean is 84 and 82 in his career at IU.  Guy is over-rated. 
  • The Coach After Eddie.  How he gets away with the things he has since being at U of L?  Not sure who is more of a narcissus Rick, The Drunk AD or the current King Oblamo the 1st.  Probably a tie between the three.  You would think he would be humble but he is opposite of humble.
  • Wow!  How much surgery has CAE's wife had.  She looks like Joan Rivers or some kind of monster
  • I will say congrats to U of L on winning it all.  I was always a fan of the Ville in the 70's and 80's just not anymore. 
  • The Chickenheads need to get rid of that ridiculous L sign they make and do a V for the Ville.  The loser sign is just ridiculous. 
  • The Bats have a center fielder, Billy Hamilton, who is the second coming of Vince Colemen.  I have been to two games so far and seen him steal five bases. 
  • I do not think that UK's 9th Championship will be as tough to win as the Chickens had with their 3rd or IU is having with their 5th. 
  • Alford to UCLA is an interesting hire.  Could Steve end up at IU if Crean cannot get them to the next level? 
  • Master's should be a great one this year.  I finally own Master's swag.  My good buddy Dale Thomas, aka Yama, was at a practice round on Tuesday and hooked me up.  Thanks Yama! 
  • Really into baseball this year.  Listening to allot of games on the Internet.  Found my new favorite play by play guy, the San Diego Padres guy.  He is really good.

I will hang up and listen! 

    Sunday, March 31, 2013

    Rivalries Should Not Be About Hate

    Respect the Other Fan When You Can

    As a Navy fan I do not hate Army.  I respect Army.  I respect their sports programs and I know their players, like Navy and like Air Force, are a group of over achievers who always give the maximum effort on and off the field. 

    Why are other rivalries not built this way?  Why can't a Bama fan respect an Auburn fan for being loyal to their own program and no matter whay they think about the other school demonstrate the respect they want in return for being a Bama fan?  Vice Versa also.  Same for Red Sox and Yankees, OSU and Michigan, Georgia and Georgia Tech, Kentucky and Louisville.  Wouldn't be great if the fans respected each other like Borg and Johnny Mc. 

    Because somehow, some way their are people that tie your fandom to intellect is the main reason I see this occur.  One group is not smarter then the other or because one resides in a rural area and one is in the city does not mean squat.  Let's face it you are allot of times born a fan of a team and it is rare that a fan evolves although it does happen. 

    Take me for example.  I am a die hard St Louis Cardinal Fan.  I was not always.  In 1982 I was for the Brewers because I was a big fan of Robin Yount. 

    In the 70's I knew I hated the Yankees, somewhat influenced by my mom but I was not a Reds fan and my mom was for sure a big Reds Fan.  I liked the Dodgers, because my grandfather did but a west coast team was just not for me.  I loved the A's, because who does not like a winner and they A's were all of that in the 70's.  I loved the Red Sox in 75, because of Fred Lynn, Jim Rice and Yaz and I always seemed to follow the Pirates because of Stargell and Dave Parker. 

    In 1985 my Lieutenant and one of my buddies I was serving with in the Navy were both Redbird fans and their early season discussion got me in the boat (pardon the pun) as to be honest baseball had become very secondary to me.  Of course the 85 season for St Louis was a good one and even though it did end on a sour note I was now hooked.  I never game the Redbirds any real consideration in the 70's, probably because that was a lost decade for the franchise but now that is my team period!

    I was born a Kentucky fan.  My mom and I always listened to both football and basketball games on the radio and of course UK had good teams in both sports in the 70's so it just never left me.  I have to admit there was a time in the mid 80's while being stationed on the East Coast that I had become a big Duke fan but that was more of a dig at UNC then anything.  I also was a U of L fan up until I moved to Louisville and after living here for a couple of years just grew to dislike members of their fan base based on comments and elitism they sometimes displayed.  Of course it is not all of them but the I have reached a level of intellect by being a U of L fan over being a Kentucky fan is just ridiculous.  At the end of the day they are just a bunch of rednecks just like the UK fans and IU fans and all three have their share of people who are completely over the top. 

    I of course became a Navy fan because of my service.  No I did not go to the Academy but those people at the Academy represent the Naval Service on and off the field and their are always graduates each year who started out in the ranks for the enlisted men.  I love the football team and I take their wins in ecstasy and losses in against just as I do the other teams I follow. 

    Lastly.  Why am I and my brother both Bama Football fans?  You know I have know idea.  When we were kids we watched Bama and I always liked everything I read or heard about Bear Bryant.  They also were winners and of course that never hurts.  Although I do not take their losses as hard I am as into their game when watching or listening as I am UK, St Louis or Navy. 

    The point is at the end of the day get rid of the hate and respect that a person is a fan whether they are a fan of your school or not.  Try when you can to take the high road when the fan of another team starts to dig at you because that does demonstrate a level of intelligence that the other fan or fan base may not demonstrate.  If you cannot do that then just pretend the other fan base or team just does not exist.  That seems to work the best for me as you cannot hate on something that does not exist.  ;o)

    Sounds good and it works some of the time but like all fans I have my point of no return.  I do tweet some negatives from time to time but that is only after I have usually heard some comment that has set me off or recently read a Pat Forde article that is based on wishes and innuendo.  Allot of the time it is also intended as humor but if you are on the other end that is not the humor you want to hear. 

    Every fan base has that guy, or that group and when a person is a fan base denies that they are just completely out of touch with reality.

    Joker Phillips

    Now that I have taken this all in I think that Joker just never had a chance at UK.  He was to nice a guy, had been the guy the players looked to as a buddy and that is why it always makes it tough to go from the Lieutenant to the Captain. 

    Joker's style was just never going to make it at UK.  Coach Brooks had some success playing this style but he had two teams that in my opinion very much underachieved because week in and week out that style for Kentucky is just not going to hold up in the SEC. 

    Joker wanted to play smash mouth football where you ran the ball and threw it when you needed and that is the opposite philosophy of what it takes at UK in the SEC.  You must throw it and run the ball off the passing game by getting your skill players spaced properly by spreading the field and making sure you have allot of pace (no huddle, etc).  UK is and was never just going to line up and blow an SEC team off the ball. 

    Joker also never established a defensive philosophy.  UK's defense under Joker was bad, really bad and there was not stability on that side of the ball.  This hurt Joker's tenure severely as it seemed to get worse and worse as things wore on through the Vandy game this year when it became obvious it was just over for Joker and hist staff. 

    Joker is a good position coach (I question his ability as a play caller based on some of the things I saw him do as OC) and he is in the right place to renew his career.  Being the receivers coach at Florida is a good place to be and with some luck he can work his way into the OC role at some point.  I still think Joker's ultimate destiny is to be and OC in the NFL where the pro style will work. 

    I wish the man allot of luck. 
    • Ohio State and Kansas busted my brackets. 
    • Just an awful tragedy with the U of L player who broke his leg.  You never want to see something like that happen to a player ever! 
    • Tubby Smith left UK because he just was not the right type of personality for the program.  Tubby was a good guy and a great coach but he just wanted to coach and it just takes a bit more at UK.  I think Minnesota was a great place for Tubby and I think they made a mistake in firing him.  However where is the media crying racism like they did when he resigned at UK?  Tubby will have a banner hanging in the rafters at UK.   
    • Vitale.  Your time has passed.
    • I just don't get Mike and Mike or what the appeal is but for me that is ESPN in general.  I am not in their target market cause I am old. 
    • I am just not surprised IU lost.  To me Zeller was slow and the guard, #1 just did not look like a guy who was going to help lead that team to a championship.  They were talented but just did not to me have that knock out power.  It is yet to be seen to me as to whether or not Crean is the guy who takes that program back to a championship level.  Cuse = bad match up for any team.  I do feel bad for my boss and one of my buddies who is a big IU fan. 
    • There was supposed to be parity in college basketball and based on the Final Four I would have to say that is accurate statement. 
    • Just make a decision on the Anchored Putter and let's move on!  I really have no opinion but I never feel like an opponent has an advantage with this style of putting. 
    • I may be one of only a few but I loved watching the WBC this time. 
    • Bama has had some off the field issues but I think that Saban has things under control there.  To win three championships would just be amazing. 
    • Still taking in the Stoops thing.  I still cannot believe UK got him and I think he has an aggressive and hungry staff.  I have not been this excited going into a season for football since 2007 and 1977 (yes I knew UK was going to be good then even though I was only 13).  The up tempo is what we need and that is where he is going with this team!  We are not Bama we are Kentucky in football so you have to do something different to compete in the SEC.  
    • Ryan Harrow is making a good call.  UK's program will have some stability in the next three years with their team and I feel pretty strong that Cal will lead UK to another Championship.  Cal may return to the NBA at some point. 

    Thursday, March 28, 2013

    Best Putter Ever is not Me


    Tiger, Jack or Jones

    Paul Azinger recently tweeted out that no doubt that Tiger Woods is the best putter ever period. 

    I am in no position to argue with the former Ryder Cup Captain but I will give it a shot.


    - Jack won 18 majors coming from behind in 8 of those 18 wins.

    - Jack won two US Am.

    - One of two players to achieve a "triple career slam" i.e. winning all four major championships three times in a career, the other being Tiger Woods.

    - Nicklaus made 39 consecutive cuts in major championships starting at the 1969 Masters and ending by being cut at the 1978 PGA Championship. In this span he won eight times, was runner-up seven times, and had 33 top-10 finishes. This record of consecutive cuts made in major championships was equaled by Tiger Woods at the 2006 Masters.

    - Nicklaus holds the record for most runner-up finishes in majors with 19.

    - Nicklaus holds the record for most top-five finishes in major championships with 56.- One of two players to finish in the top five in all four professional major championships in two different years (1971 and 1973), the other being Tiger Woods (2000 and 2005). Both players finished in the top four in all four majors once (1973 and 2005, respectively). However, it should be noted that Bobby Jones won the "Grand Slam" under the old configuration in 1930 and Ben Hogan won all three of the majors he was able to play in 1953.

    - Nicklaus holds the record for most top-10 finishes in major championships with 73. This is 25 and 27 more than the next players Sam Snead (48) and Tom Watson (46), respectively.

    - Nicklaus finished in the top-10 in his final three professional major championships as an amateur (second in the 1960 U.S. Open, seventh in the 1961 Masters, and fourth in the 1961 U.S. Open).

    I remember a quote from a documentary about his 86 Masters when he was on 17 of the final round that stated, "Here is a guy who has made every big putt he ever faced could he somehow make one more." That was followed by the infamous call of, "Yes Sir" and of course Jack then staring at the heavens.


    - Jones is the only player ever to have won the (pre-Masters) Grand Slam, or all four major championships, in the same calendar year (1930). Jones made a bet on himself achieving this extraordinary feat with British bookmakers early in 1930, before the first tournament of the Slam, at odds of 50–1, and collected over $60,000 when he did it.

    - Jones represented the United States in the Walker Cup five times, winning nine of his 10 matches, and the U.S. won the trophy all five times.

    - He also won two other tournaments against professionals: the 1927 Southern Open and the 1930 Southeastern Open.

    - Jones won seven professional major championships, as an Am

    - Jones won five US Am and one British Am with his lowest margin of victory being 7 of with 6 to play which is incredible.

    - Jones did not spend as much time working on his game as professional then or now and of course played in the era of hickory shafted clubs.

    - Jones's four titles in the U.S. Open remain tied for the most ever in that championship

    - Jones retired from competitive golf at the age of 28. He would have won many more championships had he played ten more years.

    - Jones did return for one last competitive tournament, the 1934 Masters (of course the tournament he founded) and finished T13.

    - Jones played in 31 majors, winning 13 and placing among the top ten finishers 27 times.

    As for Tiger you cannot argue with what he has done from Junior Am all the way through his major championships record.  Had Tiger not had the personal issues and injuries he would have a few more majors.

    To me what puts Jack above Tiger is of course the number of majors won but even if Tiger catches Jack the number of second place finishes by Jack trumps both him and Jones as greatest putter ever.

    As for me my top five players of all time considering who they were and their accomplishments:

    1. tie, Jones & Jack

    3. Woods

    4. Hogan

    5. Hagan

    These five players completly dominate the golfing landscape for periods of time like no other players ever. I think had Greg Norman not been so snake bitten in the majors he could be a person who could crack that list, which some people would really argue but of course ahead of Norman would be Snead, Palmer and Player.

    College Basketball

    This has nothing to do with John Calipari!

    I have to say that I am at a point now where I watch Kentucky play basketball and that is about it for me. I really prefer to listen to the games on the radio.

    #1 - On occasion I will have a game on while I am running on the treadmill but I refuse to watch any game where Vitale, Knight or Dykes are part of the telecast. (That is Jimmy Dykes not dykes in general).

    #2 – What we are watching today is not basketball. The inside game is completely gone with the three point line. In the Men’s game you have a post player and then four guys running around the perimeter. Denny Crum was right when he said it would ruin the college game and he was right. Move the line in college back to the NBA line.

    #3 - Denny’s mentor, John Wooden, once stated that if you want to watch pure basketball watch a women’s college game and he is spot on as I have watched a few this year and it is more the type of basketball I like to watch.

    #4 – One and done is just out of control. I hate it period, end of story! College basketball needs the baseball rule that if you go to school you stay three years (meaning a player can go straight to the Pro’s out of high school). Making college a one year stop over is just a complete joke and the NBA needs to change this rule.

    #5 – The hate that is cast on the University Kentucky and its fan base by opposing fans (especially two of the local fan bases) is beyond ridiculous.

    #6 – The national media’s obvious hatred of the University of Kentucky.

    #7 – The national media’s totally unfair and biased portrayal of Coach Adolph Rupp based on innuendo of opinion of Adolph Rupp vs. facts! Many of Rupp’s coaching methods are still used today (I like that Coach Cal grasp this fact and makes an effort to remind the current Kentucky team what Rupp really meant to basketball and University of Kentucky and basketball).

    And then there is this From the Masses

    From earlier in the year:

    - Probally little white kids all over Lex with a flat top.

    - Vanderbilt won the SEC Championship, not Kentucky. So, how can Kentucky repeat as SEC Champs?

    - i give coach Calicheater another 2 years before he is exposed as he really is...a cheat. kentucky fans are used to being under sanctions..shouldnt be a surprise.

    - When Calipari gets caught they have all a been pretty big but when they bust him for Kentucky it will be HUGE . Can't wait to see how he is getting away with it this time .

    - it's pretty obvious that the tobacco chewing hillbillies from Fayette County have it all figured out and are keeping it a secret. They are probably discussing what the real punishment should be over their collective breakfasts, consisting of biscuits (from scratch of course) grits, salt bacon, head cheese and mason jars filled with whole milk. Then they will go jump on the scales and scratch their heads in amazment and celebrate that they have only gained 39 pounds since March Madness.

    - what happened to Wiltjer? Why he only tried 3 points. He was a 5 star recruit two years ago and he wants to stay at UK at least for another year?


    - Chickebutt fan says to IU fan, I hope that our teams are in the final because that will really piss UK fans off even more. #We do not give a shit! Still cannot understand why Chickenbutt fans are as focused on what UK is doing or not doing as they are their own team. The reason that when I moved to Louisville I was somewhat of a fan but now I just pretend as if they do not exist. #Little Brother syndrome.

    - UK’s had an off year but I still do not think that the number nine will be as tough to win as number five and six were. Eight was somewhat tough.

    - Jack Givens’ overall performance in the Final Four, he played in two, continues to be ignored year after year. Take away Givens 18-27, 41 game performance and look at his other three games. Two would be the dream of any final four players and the third was sub par (Ship in 1975) which is one of the reasons UK does not have nine championships now. As for multiple final four appearances by a non UCLA player, Jack’s is the best. When you throw in the UCLA dynasty Givens is still top five! Another Kentucky media bias fact.

    - Pat Forde, The coach after Eddie’s media Boy Toy, has some crazy notion that the UK basketball program as its lowest point since probation which shows how far his head is up the aforementioned coach’s head. Part of his logic has to do with the Chickenbutts starting out in Lexington like it is some big crazy deal to UK fans. He also fails to mention that UK’s run last year started on the aforementioned team’s home floor and that was not big deal either.

    - Forde also is talking like because of how UK played this year Cal’s recruiting methods are completely flawed. WOW! Cal is 3 of 4 in his four seasons, 75% is the way I see it and because of winning it all last year I give the coach a pass for this year. Bad group of kids, not bad coaching, bad recruiting or bad philosophy this year. Forde is wishing vs. being objective which is why he no longer works at the Courier Journal or ESPN. #Get your head out of the Coach after Eddie’s Ass Forde!

    - Anymore, I think it has to do with time; other interest and a renewed focus on working and earning I keep up with only UK Sports, Navy Football, the St Louis Cardinals and SEC Football.

    - Man I miss the Finebaum show!