Flawless Victories

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Flawless Victory

As of Wednesday they remain at seventeen wins and zero losses. Their woefully overmatched opponents cower in fear, thankful they won’t run into such awesome force again. The offense is nearly unstoppable, running up the score with speed and long-range outbursts. The talent disparity is ungodly, separating them from…the rest. They are on an inexorable march to the southwest, where they will be heavy favorites to take their crown. Some players still show flashes of youthful exuberance, but they are well cautioned to avoid revealing it to their stoic coach, a surefire Hall of Famer now fully moved out of his mentor’s grand shadow. On Sunday, February 3, they will likely be striding confidently as undefeated, but today they still face the enormous pressure of history. The mythical unbeaten heroes of over thirty years ago refuse to go quietly; each passing year grows their legend. But there is little doubt in my mind that this team will quiet any doubters and run the table to 19 and 0.

Of course, North Carolina will still be 21 wins away from a perfect season. Read More

Success Isn’t Blessed In The BCS Mess


Crystal Footballtrain wreck

First SoCal and Geaux Tigers had their toes in the door
Then Stanford shocked SoCal, the doormats no more!
So Just Cal moved to 2nd in all football land
(Thanks a ton, Cardinal, and again for the band!)

But Just Cal stumbled when Kevin Riley slipped
On a junior high brainfart when his legs took a trip
Now Just Cal is gone and what the hell? LSU?
Kentucky in three OTs leaves them feeling blue Read More

Mascots Are Everywhere


Baldwin the Boston College EagleRecently the internet pipe trucks have been full of mascot news and stories, and I’m not one to buck the trend. But before I get into the links I have a story. Back in my college days, I had a terrible job. (Well, maybe job isn’t the right word because the only “payment” I received was a pair of pants. And not good pants, maroon warm-ups — like the athletes that are sitting on the bench wear.) So, back in college I had this terrible work-like activity I did.

I didn’t gain any recognition for what I did, but everyone got to see me (sometimes even on TV). I had to work at random hours. I was punched by kids of all ages, but I also got my picture taken with even more kids. I did get to wear cool credentials that gave me access to the secret underground tunnels. Sometimes there was even some free food. I had to ride in a bus with either the cheerleaders or the band. It was my choice, but how do you make that choice? On one hand, you have some decent looking women who are completely vapid and only want to talk about which members of the football team they’ve slept with. On the other hand, you have a group who barely dates outside the group and have limited social skills. (I usually went with the band — a nerd really can’t fault someone too much for their social skills.)

I was Baldwin, The Boston College eagle. Read More

[Business Day One] Stuffing and Potatoes


Thanksgiving has, over the years, evolved into the perfect storm of sloth and gluttony.  The trip home is usually exhausting enough that you want to spend Thanksgiving Eve half asleep on an old high school buddy’s couch.  The gut-busting feast on Thanksgiving Proper is filling enough to make you remain sedentary for all of that night, most of Black Friday, and at least half of that Saturday.  The World of Sports has developed a symbiotic relationship with the World of Holiday Over-Indulgence, so as America digests, they can also watch early season NBA games, the final regular season college football games and the Packers take on the Lions.  Not a bad way to spent time otherwise spent reconnecting with family.  Anyway, all of this eating and sports watching put me in a position to make some pretty interesting observations:

– Jon Kitna has quietly evolved from a perfectly average, oft-overlooked quarterback into an insufferable douchebag over the past year.  Read More

[Business Day One] Facepaint, Tailgates and Dirty Business

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A week or so back, the NCAA amended college football’s (and as well as the other sports’) recruiting policy to forbid coaches and recruiters from text messaging high school players.Go BC Eagles! This may not seem like a particularly big deal. But for someone like me, an avid fan of college football, this development is meaningful, significant, and a reflection of how terrifying the machinery of collegiate athletics.

Those that know me well know that I have a near psychotic obsession with Boston College sports. I’m a football season ticket holder, belong to two B.C. sports message boards and donate to my alma mater’s athletic fund with regularity. I’ve got a lot of pride in the school that educated me, and I cheer like a madman for my Eagles.

I am, of course, no different than the millions of other red-blooded college sports fans that live and die by their teams. I know Notre Dame alums that travel to South Bend every year to give a nod to Touchdown Jesus and watch a game. Touchdown JesusI know folks from Harvard and Yale that describe their times in school as simply “we were 3-1 during my tenure.” I know families in Florida that fiercely argue over where you could get a better show: in The Swamp or at The U. Heck, I know that 92,000 people went to Alabama’s spring scrimmage. Their spring scrimmage. This kind of pride (and the rivalries that it spawns) create brotherhoods rooted in cultish devotion. And while I love being part of a community that exhibits such passion, I realize that this passion manifests itself in peculiar and often disturbing ways. Folks want success so bad that their love becomes a destructive force, driving coaches out of a job and tearing up the lives of the kids that play. Read More

Don’t Change That Channel.

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This being Easter, well, call me the Easter Bunny ’cause I’ve got a little present for you: a bit of wisdom!

Don’t change that channel.

If you already missed most of the game, just let it slide. Odds are, you’re not going to be pleased with the outcome– either you missed the good stuff, or the implosion happens as soon as you tune in. Anytime you flip to the game in the late stages, you’re: better off on the one hand waiting for “Sportscenter;” or on the other just plain not bothering. When you start watching late, you’re bound to be pissed. You missed the rally, or you tuned in for the loss.

Invariably, when I tune in for the late stages of any contest, I’m inviting disappointment. Case in point: tonight, BC vs. Michigan State for the NCAA Hockey championship. My father calls me and asks, innocently enough, “Are you watching? This is a great game!” Read More

Virgina Wins!

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Virgina WinsThere is no I in team… or in the last syllable of Virginia apparently. The good people at “the other college basketball tournament” or N.I.T. as they like to be called made a little mistake on some championship t-shirts. Looks like the mountaineers have a new West Virgina shirt to bring home. Hey, it could have been worse, they could have been wearing some new West Vagina shirts.

I know, I’m not really one to talk about spelling, because I can’t spell my way out of last place in a Scrabble game. But come on people, they invent tools for this. Hell, Firefox has it built in so that, no matter what website I’m on, I can comment like I went to College, unlike the folks at the Not Invited Tournament who make the No I T-shirts. And that’s not the only thing the NIT does stupidly: scheduling game to happen at the same time as the NCAA games. You have to realize that you’re the second fiddle and that you’ll get much more SportsCenter air time if you have games on different nights.

Of course, you have to wonder (or you don’t, but I will): what about those lovely championship shirts that would have gone to second place Clemson if they had won? We all know that they immediately ship these shirts out to impoverished African nations, so we’ll never know if there is some child wearing a beautiful Clemson Tiggers shirt.

Hoya Saxa… not that it matters

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I’m a terrible gambler sports prognosticator. As mentioned previously, we do this little fantasy baseball league, and I’m solid middle of the road year-in, year-out. So it should hardly be surprising that my lack of picking prowess translates into other, equally venerable sports betting guessing arenas.

I entered an NCAA pool this year, giving in to that yearly sisyphean impulse. Imagine my dismay when I saw that Georgetown (and the combo of Patrick Ewing Jr. and John Thompson XV/V) and BC would meet in the second round! (If it helps the imagination, the most dismay I could experience was about five bucks’ worth.) What to do? Logically, I couldn’t pick BC over a bigger, more consistent Hoyas team with a fierce basketball pedigree… but if a team were to eliminate our Eagles, clearly I should pick them to win out. Read More

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