Category Archives: General Sports

DudeYouPodcast: Recapping National Signing Day, Remembering the Super Bowl, Talking NBA and Hyping the Olympics


In Episode 36, Andrew Hall @DudeYouCrazy) and Daniel Palmer (@dpalm66) recap the week in sports including:

  • National Signing Day
  • the Super Bowl
  • An NBA Disaster
  • The New NBA Dunk Contest Format
  • The Olympics

 

As always, download the DudeYouPodcast on iTunes (make sure to subscribe)

Hit it up on Stitcher Radio.

Even stream it online via Spreaker.

 

 

The Official DYC Super Bowl Preview


This Sunday, it all comes to an end. Our true national pastime bids adieu once more, as the Broncos and Seahawks lock up in a match-up pitting not only the top teams in each conference, but also the NFL’s best offense versus the NFL’s best defense. We’re going to go over what happens when each team has the ball, some friends of the blog are gonna make some picks, and we’re going to point out some of the best ways to lose money causally this weekend. Most importantly, we’re not going to cut you off cold turkey from football for safety reasons.

First things first, prop bets. Everyone loves them, they’re a great way to integrate casual fans into the game, and if you’re paying close attention, there’s money to be made. We covered prop bets at length on the not-yet-award winning DudeYouPodcast, but there’s one we DIDN’T cover that I win money on every year.

National anthem over/under.

This year, the anthem will be brought to you by Renee Fleming, an opera singer who brings a full lyric soprano to the table (according to Wikipedia). I was embarrassed not to know who she was until I read that she was an opera singer, so I’ve got that going for me. Vegas has the length of her anthem set at 2:25, and the record right now is 2:36 seconds held by Alicia Keys, and that was done just last year. Couple the fact that we’ve got a classically trained singer who may not be used to braving the elements, and I think the under is the bet here.

(Yes, I’m aware that I have grossly over-thought this, and yes this might be a sign of a debilitating gambling addiction. What are you, my mother?)

Now, on to the game itself!

Seattle @ Denver

When We Last Saw Seattle: Richard Sherman was Richard Shermaning, Beast Mode was Beast Moding, and Pete Carroll was becoming the first coach to lead a team to a BCS title game and a Super Bowl, as I have been reminded by my USC fan friends over the past two weeks. All USC vacated title jokes aside, it’s amazing that just four years ago, the NFC West was bar none the worst division in professional football. This year, we saw two from the division lead the entire conference wire to wire, and an 11-win Arizona team miss the playoffs, so it’s safe to say that they survived the best division in football to get here.

This is a team built on their defense and their running game, and with the apparent neutral conditions Sunday, it looks like this will be a good time for them to shine. Look for the Seahawks to start early with a heavy dose of Marshawn Lynch, as the Broncos haven’t had to deal with a true power running attack all year. The reason they’ve been able to avoid that kind of attack has been they score so many points so fast, that teams are forced to throw to keep up. Won’t be the case this Sunday, as this record breaking Seattle secondary will present a unique challenge for the Denver offense.

The biggest variable for Seattle is just how much Wilson is going to be asked to do under center. He’s stepped up big in every situation asked for thus far, and while his numbers haven’t been gaudy, I don’t think he stops stepping up now. Win, lose or draw, Seattle will be improving their receiving corps in the offseason, but is this the game where their biggest weakness finally bites them? Land Baron Carroll says no.

pete carroll

When We Last Saw Denver: Peyton Manning and company were juuuuuuust finishing up laying waste to the entire NFL in general, and the offensive record book in particular. Passing yards? Got it. Passing touchdowns? Been had it. Most points in a season? Something something, Danger Zone. Bottom line, this is the most prolific offensive season in the history of the Shield, and I’m not sure we see anyone top it going forward. Not to be lost amidst the passing stats, the running game from Denver was the 15th in the league this year.

Success on ground may have come from the offense softening defenses with the passing attack, but that same passing attack accounts for their success against the run. As I already mentioned, teams were often forced to abandon the run early to accommodate keeping up with the Peyton Mannings, and left this defense as 8th against the run. Seattle is not one to abandon the run, and will look to extend their possessions with the ball, in an effort to keep this offense off the field. The major question becomes lies on the match up between the passing game and the Legion of Boom. Can Kam Chancellor and company keep the passing game under wraps? Bionic neck cyborg quarterback Peyton Manning says no.

THE PICK: I was raised on defensive football. I like a defense that hits and makes plays, and that talks the talk and consistently backs it up. But, I’m also human. I watched this Broncos season like everyone else who helped bet this line up, and watching their efficiency and dominance this year makes it hard to think that anyone can stop them, even the Seahawks. Before we get to my pick, I asked some people around the blog and former guests of the pod their opinions:

Jason Smith (writer at DudeYouCrazy.net, new guy, @jasonisasmith) – “Denver wins on 7 straight field goals from Matt Prater who becomes the first kicker to win the Super Bowl MVP.”

Rodimus Prime (host of the award-winning podcast The Black Guy Who Tips, better at podcasting than us, @rodimusprime) – “This is tough but give me the Seahawks because Russel Wilson is QB cyborg and that defense is nasty. So I’m going with Seahawks plus the 3!”

Chad Floyd (writer at DudeYouCrazy.net, former intern, @Chad_Floyd) – “The Beast Mode rushing attack against a decidedly average defense? Seahawks +3. Seahawks moneyline. Seahawks with points negotiable.”

Michael Felder (lead college football writer at Bleacher Report, drinker of beer(s), @InTheBleachers) – “As the guy who started “All Russell Wilson Everything” on that Thursday night against UNLV‎ in his debut game at Wisconsin, I feel like I need him to finish the drill. The kid balls. Oh and Seattle’s DBs play ball like a real G should. Get down or lay down Broncos.”

Andrew Hall (site runner at DudeYouCrazy.net, mid-podcast vanisher, @DudeYouCrazy) – “I’ve got Seahawks winning outright. The defense and the weather will rattle the Broncos. Beast Mode will be enabled. Wilson will make just enough throws.” 

Flying in the face of convention and public opinion, I have to agree with most of these breakdowns: I think the games stays close, and a close game goes to the team that can run and play defense.

Seahawks (+3) over Broncos

If you’ve learned one thing this season gambling with me, it’s that the public is usually wrong. And if I learned anything, well…

Get down or lay down, indeed. Enjoy the game everyone.

Love this? Hate it? Think I’m an idiot? Don’t just curse at me under your breath, head to the Dude You Podcast iTunes page, and leave a 5-star review to make sure I know it, and have your voice heard on the air. Follow me at https://twitter.com/dpalm66

NFL Championship Weekend


The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing the world he didn’t exist.

- Verbal Kent Keyser Soze

He did it again. The Ginger Hammer struck, and his aim was true! The two Championship games people have clamored for since the season kicked off way back in September have come to fruition, as the Niners travel to Seattle, and the Peyton Mannings host the Tom Bradys.

How the hell did we get here? Seriously, the NFL has touted mediocrity parity over the past few years to the point that every team has felt like it had a legitimate chance at the beginning of the season. Hell, Browns fans talked themselves into Brain Hoyer, Jason Campbell, and Brandon Weeden over the course of the year; in this new NFL, hope is supposed to spring eternal. But, for the first time in over 10 years, both the AFC and NFC see the teams with the top records competing for the right to play in the Super Bowl.

And look at these storylines! I know the Goodell-as-Vince McMahon GIF is old, but it’s still funny, and the talk around these games is better than anything coming out of pro wrestling’s writers rooms since Hogan turned on us all at Bash at the Beach (never forget). We’ve got San Francisco and Seattle, two teams who have been barking at each other before the season even began, and who haven’t found a microphone they aren’t fond of. Hell, this extends to their head coaches who haven’t like each other for…let’s say, a while.

On the other side of the bracket, we’ve got the Golden Boy Tom Brady taking the Patriots west to face the Bionic Man Peyton Manning. So many people have been telling us all that Tom Brady’s season has been underrated this week, that it’s starting to feel like what Peyton did this year in Denver has somehow become underrated. I’m not going to list everything he did this year, but just realize that he rewrote the passing record book, and put the numbers so far out of reach, we may never see anything like it again. Also, I’m not going to rehash all the Brady/Manning angles, mostly because I don’t get paid per word, and because you know exactly what those angles are. But, now that we’ve got the match-ups, what do we do with them? Same thing we do every week gentle reader, PICKS. As always home teams are in bold.

PS. – I know that Bryan Singer and crew just paraphrased Charles Baudelaire in the header quote, but I thought it was safer quoting Usual Suspects than a dead French poet. Maybe I underestimated you readership. Probably not.

New England @ Denver

When We Last Saw New England: Belichick was rendering my upset pick stupid, and riding his running game to the AFC title game in a big win over the Colts. What’s been most impressive about this year’s Patriots team to me has been their ability to re-invent themselves at the drop of a dime. They exited last offseason with their tight ends as the focal point of their offense, and confidence around core veterans on defense. Sunday, they will have neither of their highly touted tight ends available (injuries and shooting people, respectively), and the heart of their defense has been gutted by injury and whatever the hell is going on with Brandon Spikes.

Last week saw the latest iteration of the 2013 Patriots: Bruising running game and opportunistic passing defense. Led by Blount, they pounded Indianapolis into submission and forced Luck into 4 more postseason interceptions. It’s not typical to see a New England win with Brady throwing up a less-than-impressive line of 13-25 for 198 yards and 0 (!) touchdowns, but the fact that they did it to open up the playoffs bodes well for them going forward.

When We Last Saw Denver: Peyton was holding on for dear life to a lead, after withstanding a furious bolo-tie fueled comeback by Phillip Rivers and the Chargers. Peyton closing out the game was impressive, but more noteworthy for me was how the injuries to the Denver defense had such a massive impact on the game. Lingering foot issues put Champ Bailey in the nickel back role early, and a fourth quarter injury to Chris Harris Jr. turned a 17-0 snoozer for the Broncos into a late touchdown-onside kick-third down conversion nail biter in the end.

With cries of OMAHA echoing in their ears, Manning was able to goad San Diego offsides 5 times in the contest, and close out the visiting Chargers. Using the running game more than most games this season (44% of called offensive plays), they were able to mix clock control and downfield running to close out the game, and show balance that their prodigious offensive numbers this year would not suggest possible.

THE PICK: Both defenses are injury riddled, and both offenses showed capacity to play ambidextrous last week, so the question becomes who steps up in the clutch and delivers. History says this will be Brady, but my eyeballs tell a different story. Sure, the Broncos lost their best corner last week and have been scrambling to compensate for the Von Miller loss, but for some reason, I have more faith in the Broncos offense against the dilapidated middle of the Patriots. Remember, a lot of that Week 12 comeback win for the Patriots was in the hands of Gronkowski and he’s not walking through that door. Give me the home team giving the points, because I’m not betting against this face.

Bywk6cvcaaamqt5_crop_north

Bet against him, if you hate money

Broncos (-4) over Patriots

**

San Francisco @ Seattle

When We Last Saw San Francisco: Jim Harbaugh and his pleated pants took his team into Carolina, beat the doors off of a very mouthy Panthers team in the most physical game of last weekend. After a back and forth first half, the Niners defense pitched a shut out in the second half, and stopped the running game for Carolina from getting going, which has been key to their success all year. Stout play from the San Francisco front 7 frustrated the Panthers, who could not convert from inside their 5 yard line on 7 different play calls. The defensive alacrity of the Niners has been their calling card since Harbaugh got there, but it was met by a balanced offensive attack that caught many eyes.

Colin Kaepernick looked great under center against Carolina, but unlike the previous week in Green Bay, he did most of his damage with his arm. Finishing up 15-28 for 196, his efficiency was best seen in his ability to get 11 first downs through the air, while leaving the running to the running backs this week. Only accounting for 15 of the teams 126 total rushing yards, he has effectively shown the ability to beat you with his legs and his arms in back to back weeks. Scary stuff.

Colin Kaepernick mocks Cam Newton. on Twitpic

When We Last Saw Seattle: Marshawn Lynch was Marshawn Lynching all over the hapless Saints, and Marques Colson was getting bailed out by his coach who claimed that his awful ‘lateral’ was part of a called play. Seattle used their paced offense to limit the Saints chances, and harass the Saints out of the playoffs, as they rode 35 called runs to a home victory. Once again, the defense stood tall against a worthy opponent, holding TE/WR Jimmy Graham 1 catch on 6 targets, and took away everything the Saints like to do. Throw a lot to your freakishly talented tight end? Not today. Used the running game to beat Philly? They ain’t Philly.

hitdancer

I predict less dancing this week.

The earthquakian tales of Marshawn’s greatness cannot be celebrated enough, as his 28 carries for 140 yards was enough to pace the team to yet another home win. Russell Wilson clearly has command over this offense, and made the throws he had to make to get the win, but questions have to be asked of the passing offense. And no, I’m not just being contrarian, but if your leading receivers are Doug Baldwin and Percy “Can’t Stay On the Field” Harvin, then the question has to be asked of your passing game: what passing game?

THE PICK: Can I just bet on big hits, loud talking, and Percy Harvin not making it through the game? I can’t? Oh, well give me the team that can dominate up front, hit hard on defense, and has a running game that legitimately is terrifying. What do you MEAN that’s both teams? Seriously, this is the rubber match between two division rivals who know and dislike each other, and I can’t wait to watch. Home field advantage included, I still have to give the quarterback and coaching nod to the city by the Bay, so take the road dog, enjoy the points, and bask in the second to last football game of the season.

Niners (+3) over Seahawks

Love this? Hate it? Think I’m an idiot? Don’t just curse at me under your breath, head to the Dude You Podcast iTunes page, and leave a 5-star review to make sure I know it, and have your voice heard on the air. Follow me at https://twitter.com/dpalm66

The King Is Dead, Long Live The King


FUTURE HISTORY

The future is now.

With apologies to Alabama, Notre Dame, Oklahoma, Princeton, USC, and their combined 103 National Championships (quick, guess who has the most!), but none of it ever happened. Locally, Herschel Walker and Vince Dooley didn’t shock the world in ’80, Clemson never went undefeated back in ’81, Miami never had that great run in the late ’80s, Tech can shut up about ’90 forever, the Ol’ Ball Coach never got one at his Alma Mater, the SEC didn’t have the historic run over the past 7 years, and this play that won the game Monday?

 

Never happened.

If you listen to talking heads, basement dwelling bloggers, and even the casual fan, next year is when college football will finally be in the business of picking a real champion with the introduction of the much-anticipated playoff system in 2014. Following that line of thinking, the previous years of college football (1869-2013) were inadequately decided, and therefore this litany of false champions never happened.

The national nightmare is over.

I’m not going to sit here and defend the majority of the history of college football, because frankly, the sport doesn’t need defending. But, as of late, it has become popular to use the BCS as an example of all that is wrong with college football, when in reality it’s just the latest (and not the last) target for natural frustrations with the limitations of the postseason of an increasingly physical and time-consuming sport.

IN THE BEGINNING…

How did we get here? It’s a fair question, and one that is easily answered by visiting the BCS official website, and glancing at the history. Cliff notes version, prior to 1992 Bowl Games and their associated conference tie-ins were the defacto rewards for finishing at the top of your conference, and a regions fans could count on traveling to set destinations every year. In 1992, the Bowl Coalition took the first stance against the old guard, enabling flexibility in Bowl tie-ins, helping work towards the ‘best match-ups’.

In 1995, the Bowl Alliance further loosened the historical ties to Bowls, adding verbiage for at-large bids to the biggest games, shaking up lower Bowl tie-ins, all again with the stated intention of getting to the ideal match-up of top teams to cap the season. After the 1997 season, the Alliance negotiated with the Rose Bowl, the (then) Pac-10 and Big Ten to include “The Granddaddy of Them All” in the National Championship rotation, joining the Fiesta, Orange and Sugar. Thus was born the BCS.

Now, the BCS as we know it has changed and evolved from not just it’s inception, but year to year. According to the aforementioned BCS website, the stated goals are:

The Bowl Championship Series (BCS) is a five-game college football showcase. It is designed to ensure that the top two teams in the country meet in the national championship game and to create exciting and competitive matchups among eight other highly regarded teams in four other bowl games.

I think that there is little debate that the past 15 years have produced the top teams playing for the national championship, and exciting matchups in the rest of the games. A quick glance at the national title matchups bear that out.

1998 (1) Tennessee 23 (2) Florida State 16
1999 (1) Florida State 46 (2) Virginia Tech 29
2000 (1) Oklahoma 13 (2) Florida State 2
2001 (1) Miami 37 (2) Nebraska 14
2002 (1) Miami 24 (2) Ohio State 31 (2 OT)
2003 (1) Oklahoma 14 (2) LSU 21
2004 (1) Southern California 55 (2) Oklahoma 19
2005 (1) Southern California 38 (2) Texas 41
2006 (1) Ohio State 14 (2) Florida 41
2007 (1) Ohio State 24 (2) LSU 38
2008 (1) Oklahoma 14 (2) Florida 24
2009 (1) Alabama 37 (2) Texas 21
2010 (1) Auburn 22 (2) Oregon 19
2011 (1) LSU 0 (2) Alabama 21
2012 (1) Notre Dame 14 (2) Alabama 42
2013 (1) Florida State 34 (2) Auburn 31

 

Look at those games. LOOK AT THEM. Barring the occasional blow out of a team that truly didn’t belong (Notre Dame!), these were competitive games, and some of them downright classics. Even more importantly, year by year, I don’t see a place where another team has a legitimate claim to replace one of the two teams in the final (again, go home Notre Dame, you’re drunk).

The problem for most people, from what I can make out, has been with the process, not the results. Detractors didn’t like how ‘messy’ it was, or how it seemed to favor big conference teams, discounting that college football has always been and will always be ‘messy’, and has always and will always favor big conference teams.

Actually, an unexpected side effect of breaking automatic ties into Bowls was allowing of smaller division schools to play on the biggest stages afforded by the BCS. In the last 8 years, 8 teams from non-automatic qualifier conferences played in BCS bowls, while the previous 61 years had seen only 5 such teams play in one of the BCS Bowls.

2005 Utah (then-member of MWC) Fiesta Bowl
2007 Boise State (MWC) Fiesta Bowl
2008 Hawaii (MWC) Sugar Bowl
2009 Utah (then-member of MWC) Sugar Bowl
2010 TCU (then-member of MWC) Fiesta Bowl
2010 Boise State (MWC) Fiesta Bowl
2011 TCU (then-member of MWC) Rose Bowl
2013 Northern Illinois (MAC) Orange Bowl

 

LIES, DAMNED LIES, AND PLAYOFFS

Look, I get that people think that this new playoff season will cure all that ails, but the fact that college football isn’t college basketball is a GOOD THING to me. The bigger the playoff gets, the more it dilutes the importance of the regular season, and introduces more randomness, as opposed to recognizing greatness.

Don’t believe me? Check out college basketball ratings regular season vs. March Madness. Hell, how many college basketball games have you watched this year not involving a team you cheer for? Meanwhile, in college football, #MACtion Thursdays are a thing. Teams including, but not limited to, Ball State, Kent State, Northern Illinois and Western Michigan are must-see TV for college football heads, and for good reason.

The playoff will move bar conversations from who deserved to be in the National Title game (under the BCS, a specious debate) to who deserved to be in the playoffs. And we’ll all be back here in 2 years or 4 years or whenever the playoff expands, doing this all over again, especially since the playoff participants will be decided by a committee, not just computers.

Didn’t have faith in the computers? Search twitter for any committee member the first time a team gets snubbed, or we end up with a run of all-SEC National Title Games, and bask in the hate. Meanwhile, the most corrupt institution in sport (apologies to FIFA) continues to line it’s pockets on the backs and at the expense of unpaid labor. It’s fannnnnnnntastic.

Love this? Hate it? Think I’m an idiot? Don’t just curse at me under your breath, head to the Dude You Podcast iTunes page, and leave a 5-star review to make sure I know it, and have your voice heard on the air. Follow me at https://twitter.com/dpalm66

Yesterday’s College Football News Today: Yes! Bobby Petrino News! Jimbo Still Scared of the SEC?


Jimbo Fisher Seizing the Moment

Ole Jimbo Fisher got a way with one.  He was lucky to win that BCS National Championship.  Well, maybe “lucky” isn’t the right verbiage, but he was appropriately rewarded for having the best team.  And he’s afraid a playoff might reduce the chances of that happening.

Yesterday, Fisher offered these comments:

How many times was the BCS ever wrong?  How many times did they ever get it wrong in the end?  We’ve still got the same problem.  You’re going to argue over who’s four and five or who’s two and three.  What’s the difference?

At surface level those comments give nothing more than validation for a newly outdated system. But given that Fisher was just one day removed from winning the final BCS Championship, can more be gleaned from his comments?

Jimbo doesn’t seem to merely be saying, “The BCS got it right.”  He seems to be implying, “The BCS got it right.  The new one may not.”  Why else would the coach of the team who was ranked No. 1 heading into the championship and whose team came out victorious give a rip about more teams vying for the title?

While pundits may “argue about who’s four and five or who’s two and three,” as he intimates, perhaps Fisher is worried about who could have been in those slots.

After all, a four-team playoff based on the final BCS rankings this year would have pitted FSU against Michigan State in the semifinal.  A few days later the Seminoles would have faced the winner of an Auburn-Alabama rematch.

That doesn’t sound fun.

He’s Baaaaack

Petrino interviewed at Louisville.  I repeat: Petrino interviewed at Louisville.

They’re Gooooone

Some of the early entrants in the NFL Draft out of the SEC:

  • Odell Beckham, WR. LSU
  • Chris Boyd, WR, Vanderbilt
  • Jadeveon Clowney, Alien, South Carolina
  • Kony “2012” Ealy, DE, Missouri
  • Dominique Easley, DT, Florida
  • Bruce Ellington, WR, South Carolina
  • Mike Evans, WR, Texas A&M
  • Ego Ferguson, DT, LSU
  • Vic Hampton, CB, South Carolina
  • Anthony Johnson, DT, LSU
  • Henry Josey, RB, Missouri
  • Jarvis Landry, WR, LSU
  • Loucheiz Purifoy, CB, Florida
  • Kelcy Quarles, DT, South Carolina
  • Antonio Richardson, OT, Tennessee
  • Marcus Roberson, CB, Florida
  • Greg Robinson, OT, Auburn

That’s all I got/

Andrew

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