Best Game Ever

Last week I posted on the 2011 World Series in anticipation of Game 6. I’ve watched a lot of baseball in my life and Game 6 was the best game I have EVER seen. Hands down. There were so many ups and downs and lead changes that the game kept viewers on the edge of their seats. On two different occasions, the Texas Rangers were one strike from claiming their 1st world championship. David Freese had other plans.

With 2 outs and 2 strikes in the bottom of the 9th, Cardinals third baseman Freese hit a 2-run triple to tie the game and send it to extra innings. The Rangers blew their chance, however, reigning MVP Josh Hamilton brought his team back as an MVP should. Hamilton hit a 2-run home run to put his team back in a position to become champs. Yet again, Rangers pitchers broke down and gave up two more runs to tie the game going into the 11th inning. It was in the 11th that hometown hero Freese hit the game winning home run, sending the game to a decisive, winner-take-all Game 7.

The Rangers were already beaten. They had the championship in their hands and let it slip–twice. The Cardinals capitalized and won Game 7 to win their 2nd World Series in 5 years. Following the championship parade, legendary manager Tony La Russa retired from the Cardinals, making the 2011 World Series his swan song. It was his 3rd World Series win, his second with the Cardinals after winning one with the Oakland A’s in 1989. Congrats to the Cardinals. Game 6 was a game that people will be talking about 50 years from now.

Tagged , , , , ,

Game of the Century

One of the biggest college football games in years will be played this Saturday. LSU and Alabama will square off in a meeting of the top 2 teams in the nation. It will be the first time in SEC history that the #1 and #2 teams will play each other during the regular season. This is a game that analysts and fans have had circled on their calendars since August as a game that would have significant national championship implications.

Alabama has one of the best running backs in the country in Trent Richardson (pictured). He is 7th in the country in rushing yardage and 2nd in touchdowns with 17. He has a nose for the endzone and is difficult to tackle. He will most definitely pose a challenge for the very talented LSU linebackers and defensive linemen. While their passing attack isn’t as threatening, quarterback A.J. McCarron limits turnovers and can make plays when needed. The Tide defense has a slew of potential NFL players on the roster. They have one of the best defensive secondaries in the nation and a playmaker in linebacker Donta Hightower. Look for him to stop plenty plays of LSU’s rushing attack.

The LSU Tigers also have a formidable defense that will look to shut down Richardson and make McCarron win the game. Defensive lineman such as Barkevious Mingo will look to stop the run and rush McCarron into making critical mistakes. That rush will force McCarron to pass the ball to receivers covered by cornerback Tyrann Mathieu, possibly the best player in the nation. Only a sophomore, he has the LSU record for forced fumbles and makes great plays on the ball. Cornerback Morris Claiborne will be on the other side of the field. While Mathieu receives much more praise, many believe Claiborne is the better of the two. LSU has a great offensive rushing attack that is led by running back Spencer Ware. He is a tough runner and can catch the ball out of the backfield. LSU has much more experience at the quarterback position than Bama. QBs Jarrett Lee and Jordan Jefferson split time at the position and do so very effectively. Both are seniors with considerable experience playing in big games. Lee has become a more accurate passer this season and Jefferson’s speed provides an adequate running threat. They get the ball to playmaking wide receivers such as Rueben Randle and Russell Shepard.

Prediction: While I expect the game to be an all time classic defensive battle, I’ve gotta go with LSU on this one. I just think that the inexperience at quarterback is going to hurt Alabama. McCarron has played well this season but he hasn’t seen a defense like LSU’s. That being said, LSU’s quarterbacks must limit mistakes as they have done thus far this season. Alabama’s defense is strong enough to turn the game around at a moment’s notice. LSU by a score of 20-14.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Fall Classic


The 107th World Series is currently in progress as the Texas Rangers have a 3-2 lead over the St. Louis Cardinals going into Game 6. Personally, I do not like the Rangers at all. I’m a Texan, love everything about my home state, but I do not like the Texas Rangers. On the other hand, I am a huge fan of Cardinals first baseman Albert Pujols. He has been the best player in baseball over the last 5 years and I’d like to see him win his 2nd championship. Everything is on the line for the Cardinals on Thursday in Game 6; win or go home. The game was supposed to be played Wednesday but weather forced Major League Baseball to postpone the game.

The series has been one of the more exciting World Series in recent years. There have been low scoring pitchers duels and high scoring home run derbies such as in Game 3’s 16-7 Cardinals win. In the game, Pujols had 5 hits, including 3 homers. He became the 3rd player to hit 3 home runs in a World Series game, joining Babe Ruth and Reggie Jackson. Many feel that Pujols cemented his spot in the Hall of Fame in Game 3.

The exhilarating moments are not over in the fall classic. Hopefully, the series will go 7 games and we’ll get to witness one of the most dramatic ends to the baseball season that we’ve ever seen.

Tagged , , , ,

The Wrestler


In the late 1990s and early 2000s, I was a wrestling fan. I don’t watch it now and when I catch a glimpse of it, I find myself asking “why did I ever watch this crap?” But the WWF and WCW were extremely popular back then and I was one of the millions of fans that enjoyed watching wrestling on Monday nights.

One of the most popular wrestlers during that time was Scott Hall. He had everything: size, strength, charisma, good looks. The 6’8″, 290 pound beast was one of the highest paid wrestlers and had scores of fans around the country. Behind his wrestling facade was a very troubled man. Crippled by drugs, alcohol, and the memory of killing another human being, Hall fell into a downward spiral that resulted in multiple trips to rehab and missing his children growing up.

His life is the real life version of the film “The Wrestler”. A young man on top of the world quickly falls from grace and loses everything. If you have 20 minutes to waste, watch the video above. It tells the sad story of a man that has lost his way and still yearns to hear the fans chanting his name.

Tagged , ,

What’s Your Deal?

One of the most bizarre events in recent NFL history took place last weekend during the postgame events following the Lions-49ers game. The game was billed as one of the biggest of the weekend, surprisingly. The Niners have not been a legitimate contender for more than a decade and the Lions have been futile since the 1950s. However, both teams are seeing success this year in the form of 5-1 records. While the game was a hard fought match that came down to the final minutes, it is the post-game handshake that most people are talking about.

As the final seconds ticked away, 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh was extremely exuberant. He was jumping up and down, chest pumping his players and celebrating a big win. When he went in for the customary handshake with Lions head coach Jim Schwartz, he forcefully grabbed his hand and slapped him on the back, slightly shoving him. Schwartz, feeling disrespected, ran after Harbaugh and had to be separated by officials and players. Players often scuffle with the opposition but coaches keep level heads, so this was definitely something that most fans had not seen before. Not to mention it was quite entertaining.

In my opinion, Harbaugh needs to watch tape and see how NFL coaches conduct themselves following games. This is his first year coaching in the league; he was previously a college football coach. NFL coaches have been meeting at midfield to shake hands and wish each other luck for years now. Win or lose, coaches must show a certain level of humility, not act as if they have just won the Super Bowl. It’s Week 6! Act like you’ve won a game before Harbaugh! As far as Coach Schwartz, I feel like his actions were justified. I don’t think he was going to physically attack Harbaugh but he needed to prove his point. His team just saw him disrespected and he needed to call Harbaugh out on it. How could he continue to tell his players to fight and play hard if he had let that slide and let Harbaugh punk him like that? Personally, if a man puts his hands on me like that in a disrespectful manner as if to say “get out of my way”, we’d have major problems. I fully side with Jim Schwartz on this one.

Tagged , , , ,

RIP Dan Wheldon

On October 16, the racing world lost one of their best drivers. IndyCar racer and 2-time Indy 500 winner Dan Wheldon was killed in an accident during the IZOD IndyCar World Championships in Las Vegas. He was involved in a 15 car pileup that occurred early in the race.

Personally, I’m not a big fan of racing, NASCAR or IndyCar, but I am somewhat knowledgeable about the sport. I watch SportsCenter and see highlights of these courageous men and women racing in these cars. Many people think it’s not a sport but I beg to differ. It may not require the athletic prowess that football or basketball does, but these racers are controlling a vehicle that is traveling at over 200 miles per hour. That takes a tremendous amount of skill. Any amateur would be facing a death sentence.

However, the danger involved is potentially fatal for even the most skilled professionals, as evidenced by the accident that took Wheldon’s life or the life of legendary NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt in 2001. Some racers have since called for safer vehicles in IndyCar. When Earnhardt was killed, NASCAR implemented better safety precautions and equipment to prevent drivers from being seriously injured or killed on the track. I’m not sure what needs to be done on the IndyCar circuit, but there certainly needs to be action taken to prevent a case like Wheldon’s. Not only has IndyCar lost one of their best drivers, but a wife has lost a husband and a 2 year old son and 6 month old infant will never get to know their father.

Tagged , , ,

Top Quarterbacks


The quarterback is the most important position in all of sports. QBs are the captains of the team, face of the franchise. They get all the glory and praise in victory and all the blame in defeat. They engineer their offense and are all called on to make big plays when it matters. They are also usually the top paid players on the team. The following are my top 5 QBs in the NFL at the moment (with the exception of Peyton Manning, arguably the best EVER, who is out with a neck injury):

Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers – A-Rod is the leader of the defending world champs. He has a slew of skilled players around him and he’s able to fit passes in tight windows in order to get the ball in the hands of his team’s playmakers. He was the MVP of last year’s Super Bowl, a game in which he proved to the world that he could play with the best of them. He hasn’t slowed down this year and has led the Pack to an undefeated record through the first 5 weeks of the year. So far this season, he has 14 touchdowns, 2 interceptions, 1,721 yards and a quarterback rating of 122.9 (158.3 is the maximum).

Tom Brady, New England Patriots – For the past decade, Tom Brady has been the top QB in the NFL. He has won 3 Super Bowls, 2 MVP awards and has been to 6 Pro Bowls. He also set the record for most touchdowns in a season with 50 in 2007. He consistently has the Patriots at the top of the league and in playoff contention. He’s the master of his craft, has incredible accuracy and could run his team’s offense with his eyes closed. He’s also very clutch and can be trusted to win close games. He has 14 TDs, 6 INTs, 1,874 YDs and a QB rating of 109.5.

Philip Rivers, San Diego Chargers – Rivers is one of my favorite players in the league. He’s consistent, accurate and the ultimate leader. Many people think he is cocky and full of himself. I think his confidence is a good thing and he plays with a swagger that can’t be denied. His desire to win can be seen in his playoff performance a few years ago. In a playoff game against the Indianapolis Colts, Rivers tore his ACL. However, he stayed in the game, withstood the pain and lead his team from behind to win the game, something he has done 13 times in his career. In 2011, Rivers has 6 TDs, 7 INTs, 1,536 YDs and an 87.6 QB rating. While his numbers aren’t great, he’s the main reason that his team is 4-1 through the first 5 weeks.

Drew Brees, New Orleans Saints – Simply put, Brees puts the Saints on his back. The Saints would not be contenders without him. He runs the offense with precision, is intelligent, and has a desire to win. Brees is from Austin, TX and his high school played my high school in the state championship when I was 10 years old. Brees won the game 56-18. Not much has changed about him since. He always comes prepared to win week after week. He also gave the city of New Orleans an emotional lift after Katrina. The year that the hurricane hit was his first year playing for the Saints. His play, leadership and work in the community helped the city recover. He’s taken the Saints from a laughingstock to a Super Bowl winning franchise that continues to contend. He’s thrown for 12 TDs, 5 INTs, 1,769 YDs with a 102.3 QB rating through the first 5 weeks of 2011.

Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers – The past decade has been good to Big Ben. He became the youngest QB to win a Super Bowl and has won 2 before the age of 30. He is known for his ability to make big plays and play “backyard football” by running around and making a big throw upfield after it seems the play is dead. Big Ben is 6’5, 241 pounds, so it is difficult for defenders to bring him down. It usually takes 2 or 3 guys to get him to the ground. He plays through injury and can be counted on to make big plays when his team needs them. He’s been to 3 Super Bowls in only 7 years of play. He’s thrown for 8 TDs, 6 INTs, 1,376 YDs and a QB rating of 89.2.

Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , ,
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.