Archive for December, 2013
Yesterday was Black Monday, the day after the regular NFL season ends and when certain coaches find out if they’ve been fired. Five teams have announced which coaches will be looking for a job next year. Here is the list of head coaching changes, so far.
- Washington Redskins fire Mike Shanahan
- Minnesota Vikings fire Leslie Frazier
- Cleveland Browns fire Rob Chudzinski—actually fired on Sunday not Monday
- Detroit Lions fire Jim Schwartz
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers fire Greg Schiano
In other news, former Chicago Bears head coach, revered Chicago personality and ESPN analyst , Mike Ditka, fell asleep during Sunday’s NFL countdown. His co-anchor, Keyshawn Johnson, had to give him a nudge to wake him up.
And then there were 12. After an intense weekend of football, there are now 12 teams remaining in the playoff push for the ultimate goal, a trip to the Super Bowl. Many remaining teams either had to win or had to have another team lose this weekend in order to secure their seed in their respective divisions. Here is the schedule for the rest of the season with the 8 wild card match-ups next weekend.
Saturday, Jan. 4
Kansas City at Indianapolis, 4:35 p.m. (NBC)
New Orleans at Philadelphia, 8:10 p.m. (NBC)
Sunday, Jan. 5
San Diego at Cincinnati, 1:05 p.m. (CBS)
San Francisco at Green Bay, 4:40 p.m. (FOX)
Then, following that:
Saturday, Jan. 11
Green Bay, San Francisco or New Orleans at Seattle, 4:35 p.m. (FOX)
Cincinnati, Indianpolis or Kansas City at New England, 8:15 p.m. (CBS)
Sunday, Jan. 12
Philadelphia, Green Bay or San Francisco at Carolina, 1:05 p.m. (FOX)
Indianapolis, Kansas City or San Diego at Denver, 4:40 p.m. (CBS)
The Associated Press named LeBron James the 2013 Male Athlete of the Year. He is only the third basketball player to receive that honor since 1931 when the award was first presented. The other two basketball players receiving the award were Michael Jordan and Larry Bird. LeBron received 31 out of 96 votes, beating out Peyton Manning who received 20 votes.
Serena Williams was selected the 2013 Female Athlete of the Year.No comments
If you’re like most sports fans, you’ve paid attention to the major college football rivalries and know that division one college football’s most aspirational game is the BCS title game. And, if you’ve been watching some of the exciting match-ups this season, you know that Auburn and Florida State will battle it out to be called the “National Champion” on January 6th.
What you may not know is between now and then there are 34 other Bowl games airing. Unless you’re a die-hard, you probably won’t watch all of them, but here’s a list of the top 14 (ranked from a USA Today poll). I’ve added in the days of the top 7. Enjoy!!!
MUST-SEE TV: Bowl games Nos. 1-7
1. BCS National Championship Game: Florida State (13-0) vs. Auburn (12-1)- January 6th, 8:30 pm
2. Rose Bowl: Michigan State (12-1) vs. Stanford (11-2)- January 1st, 5:00 pm
3. Orange Bowl: Ohio State (12-1) vs. Clemson (10-2)- January 3rd, 8:30 pm
4. Cotton Bowl: Missouri (11-2) vs. Oklahoma State (10-2)- January 3rd, 7:30 pm
5. Alamo Bowl: Oregon (10-2) vs. Texas (8-4)-December 30th, 6:45 pm
6. Chick-fil-A Bowl: Duke (10-3) vs. Texas A&M (8-4)-December 31st, 8:00 pm
7. Sugar Bowl: Alabama (11-1) vs. Oklahoma (10-2)-January 2nd, 8:30 pm
SECOND-BEST: Bowl games No. 14-8
8. Fiesta Bowl: Baylor (11-1) vs. UCF (11-1)
9. Capital One Bowl: South Carolina (10-2) vs. Wisconsin (9-3)
10. Russell Athletic Bowl: Louisville (11-1) vs. Miami (9-3)
11. Las Vegas Bowl: Fresno State (11-1) vs. USC (9-4)
12 (tie). Outback Bowl: LSU (9-3) vs. Iowa (8-4)
12 (tie). Sun Bowl: UCLA (9-3) vs. Virginia Tech (8-4)
14. AdvoCare V100 Bowl: Arizona (7-5) vs. Boston College (7-5)No comments
Sunday night we saw a storybook ending for the 49ers Candlestick Park. With only 1:10 remaining in the game and with the Niners only up by 3 points, NaVorro Bowman intercepted a pass from Matt Ryan and ran 89 yards for a touchdown that sealed the win and vaulted the Niners into a playoff spot. Not only was this game important for the Niners’ playoff hopes, but it was the last evening the Niners would play at historic Candlestick Park. They move to a new stadium in Santa Clara next season. As the Niners Coach Harbaugh said: “I was and still am happier than a pig in slop. [Bowman] made a tremendous play, and I’ll remember that until the day I die,” Harbaugh said. 49ers 34, Falcons 24
Shaquille O’Neal is an alumni of the Newark Boys and Girls Club. Shaq donated $1 million in 1999 to build technology centers in clubs and every year since 1992, Shaq has hosted an event at the Boys and Girls Club of Venice. This year, every child received a JAKKS toy, a pair of Crocs shoes, and a lunch courtesy of Panda Express. In addition,No comments
Dennis Rodman is embarrassingly back in North Korea to select members of the North Korean team to represent the country against 12 members of the US team on January 8th, 2014 ( Kim Jong Un’s bday). It’s not clear which basketball players will be representing the US. Rodman said he’s trying to convince the players that it is safe to travel. He said, “You know, they’re still afraid to come here, but I’m just telling them, you know, don’t be afraid man, it’s all love, it’s all love here,” Rodman told The Associated Press. It’s ALL LOVE….what is he talking about? What about their abysmal human rights record? Maybe Rodman will stay in North Korea and stop embarrassing himself and the rest of our country.
The Green Bay Packers are close to securing a playoff spot, but it could be rough going the next two weeks as their Quarterback situation is still up in the air. Aaron Rodgers has not been cleared to play yet for the weekend but did take snaps alongside backup Matt Flynn this week. The offense is saying they don’t really care who takes the reigns, they will just continue with their game plan, but this seems like a confusing strategy. Let’s see if the Packers can pull this job sharing off.No comments
WATERCOOLER CHAT: TRAILBLAZERS RED HOT, RODGERS APPRECIATES JUSTIN TUCKER, 49ERS TRASH TALK BILLBOARD
In the NBA, the Portland Trailblazers are absolutely (and shockingly) red hot! They were predicted to possibly compete for the #8 seed this year, but they have a shot of actually locking up the #1 spot in the Western Conference. Tuesday night, they took on the Cleveland Cavaliers in Cleveland, and it was a battle of one emerging superstar (Kyrie Irving for the Cavs) against another (Damian Lillard for the Blazers). Lillard is playing spectacularly right now, and was draining three-pointers from all over the court. And then, with just 4 seconds left to go, Lillard hit a game-winning three with ease from the top of the key. He had a 36-point night and looks confident out there. Watch out for the Blazers! Portland 119, Cleveland 116.
And in the NFL, people are still talking about Baltimore Ravens kicker Justin Tucker’s amazing performance on Monday Night. Tuesday, on the radio, Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers started his interview with “I’d like to thank Justin Tucker off the top here for his performance last night. Unbelievable. That 61-yarder was amazing”. Rodgers is publicly thanking Tucker because now the Packers control their own destiny on making the playoffs. All they have to do is win their remaining two games. Matt Flynn will likely start on Sunday, but it’s very possible that Rodgers could be back Week 17, and be ready for the playoffs. With Rodgers, the Packers are a completely different team. They could get hot late.
Finally, in some humorous news out of the NFL, some 49ers fans have raised $8000 to put up a billboard in Seattle. The billboard will show the 5 Super Bowl trophies that the 49ers have won over the years, along with iconic imagery from the games (e.g. “The Catch”, when Dwight Clark caught the game-winning pass from Joe Montana.). This is a way of taunting the Seahawks, although it may not be the best idea. These teams have split the season series, and there is a very good chance that they could meet in the conference championship if the seedings come out right. The billboard costs $7000, and the fans said they would donate the remaining $1000 to a Seattle Children’s Hospital.3 comments
WATERCOOLER CHAT: RAVENS BARELY BEAT OUT LIONS, BRYANT SAYS HE WENT TO CRY, KLITSCHKO SIGHTS ON UKRAINE
On Monday Night Football, it was a very important game between the Baltimore Ravens and the Detroit Lions with playoff implications on the line. Both teams controlled their own fate, so their players would be trying their absolute hardest. The Lions started off strong, scoring on their first drive, but then their offense just completely fell apart. As for the Ravens, they couldn’t get much going either, and it turned into the Justin Tucker night for the Ravens, as he booted a game-high 6 field goals, including a 61-yard game winner. With the win, the Ravens maintain the #6 seed in the AFC, while the Lions are on the outside looking in. Baltimore 18, Detroit 16.
Elsewhere, many were criticizing Cowboys wide-receiver Dez Bryant for leaving the field early in their embarrassing loss to the Green Bay Packers on Sunday. Bryant finally revealed the truth as to why he left: Bryant said he left the field to go cry in the locker room, and he didn’t want anybody to see his tears. That’s pretty crazy, but everyone knows that Bryant is an emotional guy, and likely takes this type of loss pretty hard.
Finally, in boxing, heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko has decided to vacate his belt. He hasn’t had a fight in over 15 months, and is getting older. Many don’t follow the heavyweight division like they used to, but Klitschko was completely dominant — albeit there wasn’t much competition. Klitschko will now move his focus toward politics, as he is going to try to become the president of Ukraine. It will be very interesting to see who claims this belt next.No comments
In college football, it was the annual Heisman Trophy ceremony on Saturday night. This year’s finalists boasted 4 quarterbacks and 2 running backs, but the main competition was between Florida State’s QB Jameis Winston and Heisman defending champion Johnny Manziel of Texas A & M. Some people thought that Manziel had a shot to win it because he played a much tougher schedule in the SEC than Winston did in the ACC. However, when the envelope was opened, the winner of this year’s Heisman Trophy is Jameis Winston. That’s two years in a row where a freshman has won the coveted prize. Winston is preparing to take on Auburn in the National Championship, while Manziel will head to the NFL next season.
In the NFL, the Kansas City Chiefs were hoping to clinch a playoff spot taking on the Oakland Raiders. The Chiefs wanted to take advantage of this game, especially considering that their division rivals, the Denver Broncos, are slipping up right now. The Chiefs can thank Jamaal Charles, because he had a monster game with 4 receiving touchdowns and one rushing touchdowns. And four of those came in the first half. The Raiders made a comeback bid, but it wasn’t enough and the Chiefs grabbed the win and a playoff birth. Kansas City 56, Oakland 31.
And in Dallas, the Cowboys were looking to rebound from an embarrassing Monday Night Football loss to the Bears last week. Their offense looked fantastic in the first half, with the Cowboys leading 26-3. It looked like they had it locked up. But, in the second half, the Packers came storming back, almost scoring at will. The Cowboys were on the defensive just trying to hang on. But, in the last 2 minutes, Cowboys QB Tony Romo threw 2 interceptions that the Packers converted into points, including a touchdown from running back Eddie Lacy that gave the Packers the lead. They would hold on to win the game and keep their playoff hopes alive. Plus, if the Packers somehow snuck in the playoffs, they would likely play with a healthy Aaron Rodgers, and that makes them just as dangerous as any team. Green Bay 37, Dallas 36.3 comments
In college football, all eyes were on University of Texas coach Mack Brown. Texas is arguably the biggest football program in the nation, and they have been lackluster the past few seasons. This is a program that is accustomed to always being in the Top 5. Both the school and the alumni association don’t like to lose. Brown said that he wasn’t stepping down, but conflicting reports say that Brown is likely out at the end of the season. Texas does need a refresh, and all the rumors suggest that they are going after Nick Saban. Saban’s life would be easier in Austin than in Alabama, as they don’t necessarily want to kill you if you lose just one game in Austin.
In the NFL, Baltimore Ravens safety Matt Elam has called out Detroit Lions’ receiver Calvin Johnson. The 22-year old Elam has called “Megatron” an “old man”. Elam said that he would handle Johnson. But, clearly Elam hasn’t seen just how incredible Johnson is playing this year, and yesterday the merely 28-year old Calvin Johnson responded saying that he will show Elam what an “old man’s strength” is all about. This is a big game for both the Ravens and the Lions on Monday Night. Both teams are fighting for a playoff spot.
The Texas Rangers have made an interesting draft pick in a supplemental draft. There are a lot of compelling draft picks out there, but the Texas Ranges decided to draft Seattle Seahawks star quarterback Russell Wilson. They paid $12,000 just to get the rights to him. It’s unlikely that Wilson will play, as an organization like the Seahawks is likely going to pay Wilson big money to be their long-term franchise quarterback. And they will NOT want Wilson possibly getting hurt playing baseball. Plus, Wilson is the QB, and that position is a full time, year-round job (unlike cornerback or running back — the position we’ve seen other dual sport athletes play). It’s likely they will just want Wilson to come in and speak to the players every now and then.No comments