Tuesday, October 31, 2006

The Worst Champs in the last 30 years

When the Cardinals won it all Friday night with their 83-78 record, I immediately wondered if they were in fact the most mediocre champion ever. I decided to take a tour through the championship histories of the major sports and have compiled a top 10 list of the worst champions in the last 30 years, as it seemed a pretty modern sample. Of course, for some reason, I don’t think guys like David Eckstein or Jerome Bettis on fairly average championship teams really care how they won, but that they won. This list isn’t meant to denigrate any of these teams of course; they’re all champions, and that’s something I haven’t been able to say since 5th grade pee-wee football. Legendary teams or dynasties, like the ’72 Dolphins or 1960s Celtics, however, these teams ain’t. Enjoy and comment:

10. 1977 Portland Trail Blazers. This team, led by Big Red himself, Bill Walton, and Dr. Jack Ramsay as coach represented the Blazers 1st trip to the playoffs and only championship. The Blazers had a record of 49-33, good enough for 2nd in the division, and had an even better 1977-78 season, but were a dynasty by no stretch of the imagination, not reaching the Western Conference Finals again until 1989-90. In fact, they didn’t even win a playoff series again until 1983. Walton and Ramsay represent the only hall of famers on this team.

1978 New York Yankees. The 100-63 record is surely nothing to sneeze at, and this team featured vast array of Hall of Famers, but the reason for inclusion here is that if the Red Sox had not collapsed in an epic way, this victory never would’ve happened. Simple as that. Mike Torrez and a steady wind are what really got the Yankees title # 22.

8. 1984 BYU football. Robbie Bosco led the Stormin’ Mormons to a 13-0 season, and he and coach Lavell Edwards won the school’s only national title by defeating Michigan (6-5 record) by a touchdown, 24-17. BYU, the WAC champ, was the only undefeated team going into that bowl season, and as WAC champ, was tied into the Holiday Bowl, which, at the time, was like Boise St. winning the title after winning the MPC Computer Bowl over some average ACC team like Virginia. Long story short, by running through a crap conference, BYU won it all.

7. 1997 Florida Marlins. This was obviously a star-studded team. But it somehow only won 92 games to get the wild card behind one of those Braves teams that soon enough folded in the playoffs (to the Marlins). But, this team is on the list more so because it was the ultimate one hit wonder, as the entire core of it was gone by 1999 and had no success in the years from inclusion in baseball 1993 through 1996 (80-82 record).

6. 1988 Kansas basketball. Danny Manning fans of the world are up in arms because of this, I know. But, this was a 6 seed that really frankly barely won. Some of the more egregious stats surrounding this team: beat 14th seeded Murray St. in the 2nd round by 3 points, never faced a seed higher than 4th until the final 4, won the title over conference foe Oklahoma in the championship…in Kansas City, team came in unranked, and due to violations, Jayhawks weren’t allowed in the 1989 tournament. This wasn’t exactly a “One Shining Moment” team.

5. 2000 New York Yankees. I guess when you win 26 championships, some of your teams are better than others. In this case, the Yankees most recent championship team was an 87-75 group that lost 15 of its last 18 before rallying to win its third straight championship and fourth in five years. Luckily, this fairly mediocre season came in a year when the AL East was down, and that consecutive division title streak the Yanks have going would’ve been halved.

4. 1990 Colorado football. Arguably the most controversial of all pre-BCS shenanigans, this 11-1-1 team split with Georgia Tech, who finished the year 11-0-1. As if that wasn’t bad enough, one of those 11 wins was the infamous “five down game” where against Missouri the refs awarded the Buffs a fifth down at the goal line accidentally and Colorado capitalized and won. The Buffaloes refused to give up the game despite knowing they’d obviously won on human error.

3. 2006 Pittsburgh Steelers. This may be a bit of a projection, but when you lose to a team as bad as the Raiders the next season, well, it kind of goes to show maybe you just weren’t all that great to begin with. Add in the facts that along their run last year Carson Palmer got injured in his first pass, Nick Harper inexplicably cut towards the middle of the field, and the refs may have played a role against the Seahawks, and this 11-5 #6 seed seems to be the worst Super Bowl champ of all time. Any one of those things not happening and perhaps Coach Cowher is still in search of that 1st title.

2. 1985 Villanova Wildcats. This list isn’t meant to diminish Cinderella runs, much as it seems that way. But, anyway you slice it, ‘Nova was one of the worst champions ever. I mean, Ed Pinckney led the team, after all. It also won its first three games by a TOTAL of 9 points before hanging a 12-point victory over UNC in the elite 8, and a 7-point victory over Memphis St. in the Final 4. Then, despite shooting 78% from the field against conference foe Georgetown in the final, the Wildcats still only won by two points against a Hoya team that had already beat them twice that season. Plus I think I heard half the team was on coke or something.

And now, the worst champion of all time…your 2006 St. Louis Cardinals!!! First of all, thank you to the Wildcats, you have been a great champion for the last 21 years, but your reign of mediocre championship dominance is now over. When you finish a season of 162 games (or 161 in this case) a mere five games over .500, you’re likely not even getting to the playoffs. This season, teams with better records than the cards to not make the playoffs were: Toronto, Boston, the Chi Sox, Angels, and Phillies. Yet, because of how bad the NL Central was, the Cards slid into the playoffs despite three runs of losing more than five games in a row down the stretch. Like the Steelers a few months before them, the Cards fit the mold of a consistent winner that in the season it looks like they’re down, they catch fire in the postseason, and, when combined with experience, win it all. But really, they still kinda aren’t THAT great. Congrats to them though.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Break out the lube ...

Be honest with yourselves right now. Is there anything sexier than a woman who knows sports? You're right. A sexy woman who knows sports. And is there anything better than a sideline reporter in that regard? They talk to the men whose jerseys you wear (well, not Alexander Semin's), they ask the coaches you worship the tough questions (well, not Rich Kotite) and they have access to the locker rooms you would give your first-born child to get into. But have you taken the time to stop and stare? Have you ever asked what makes them tick? Right here, right now, is the top 15 Women of Broadcasting I've been masturbating to for years ... I mean ... respecting for their on-air talents for years ...

15. Pam Ward – Apparently too sexy to be on camera, ESPN stuck Pam Ward behind a microphone and crammed her into a booth, where she's been calling play-by-play on Saturdays for some college football games with that deep, seductive voice for years. She gets her hair-cut at the same barbershop most of us do ... And she’s also the only woman on this list with testicles, so she’s got that going for her. Which is nice.

14. Pam Oliver – She puts the fox in FOX. Pam Oliver got more attention from quarterbacks in the 90’s than any receiver in the game; thanks, in most part, to the most fantastic rump in all of sideline reporting history. Thank God for it, because she had one of the biggest foreheads in all of sideline reporting history, too. She wore a lot of hats to try and cover it up, but I know what was going on beneath those things. Still … Oliver was a spellbinding reporter, often getting the scoops her male counterparts couldn’t. Weird how rich, black, single men open up to a woman with a phenomenal ass, isn’t it?

13. Bonnie Bernstein – An All-American gymnast at Maryland – Mr. Ward’s alma mater as well – Bonnie Bernstein could pass as a beauty pageant contestant … if only she didn’t have that lazy eye. It took down Stuart Scott, too. Boo-yah!

12. Linda Cohn – With a nicer haircut, a sexier outfit and a decent push-up bra, you’ll be tuning into SportsCenter for Linda CONES. The First Lady of ESPN, you know Stephen A. Smith is sweating that big ol’ New York booty in the cafeteria.

11. Michelle Bonner – Another behind-the-desker over at SportsCenter, Michelle Bonner should just drop one “N” in her last name, because that’s what she’s giving to the countless numbers of men who tune in to see highlights. When she comes out from behind the desk, though, she’s got a little bit of a gut. What? No treadmills in Bristol, CT? I bet John Buccigross has hit it, though … And Neil Everett … And Scottie Van Pelt … And Trey Wingo … twice … Rece Davis and Brian Kenny just got hand-jobs …

10. Tina Cervasio – Tina Cervasio wins my award for best smile. Too bad she’s a Boston Red Sox reporter, where there isn’t much to smile about. Weird, because she worked for George Steinbrenner’s propaganda channel YES a few years before ... Turncoat! Cervasio is yet another Maryland alum on this list, meaning crab cakes and football isn’t all Maryland does. It produces marginally talented sideline reporters. With great behinds.

9. Erin Andrews – A sorority girl down at Florida, Erin Andrews is a leggy blonde that covers baseball and football for ESPN. She looks like your stereotypical Southern trophy wife, only pre-nose job. She should get on that …

8. Sam Ryan – While Michelle Tafoya was off having my love child, her replacement on MNF was this dazzling brunette. Ryan also covers the New York Yankees for CBS in New York, which could explain why they haven’t been winning lately … Eye’s on the ball, guys; not Ryan’s butt. (Although that doesn’t explain A-Rod, does it?)

7. Heather Cox – Heather Cox went from “American Idol” to ESPN’s sidelines … and right into my Spank Bank. Cox is the first reality show star to segue into broadcasting, and hopefully not the last. I’d love to see some of those “Flavor of Love” girls on the sidelines … Actually; I’d like to see Flavor Flav on the sidelines. Neither of them can sing, though.

6. Suzy Kolber – If she’s good enough for Broadway Joe, who am I to judge? She’s the only woman on this list to have an endorsement contract (hawking Chevrolets) and the only one to be hit on by a Hall of Famer. Her accent and trying-hard-to-look-like-she’s-not-trying look work for her … She’s probably a tiger in the sack, too.

5. Melissa Stark – Probably the most under-rated hottie on this list, Melissa Stark sort of looks like a hybrid of a few of the Melrose Place ladies. She may have appeared hotter than usual when she was on Monday Night Football, standing next to John Madden and all, but Stark belongs near the top of this list regardless. Great cheek-bones. And really sexy ear-lobes, too.

4. Rachel Nichols – Hello, Red. Rachel Nichols is fairly new to the sideline reporting scene, but sports fans everywhere should be glad she’s finally here. The fiery redhead is most known for her unblinking reports, the reason, perhaps, that her fantastic rack is often overlooked. I wonder if she’s red all over … *wink*

3. Jill Arrington – She’s the definition of what a sideline reporter should be: Tall, blonde and the daughter of an ex-quarterback. She also threatened Melissa Stark in an interview, saying “I’d take her down. She’s just a little thing.” Hopefully she takes her down into a kiddie swimming pool full of chocolate pudding and whipped cream. And the “little thing” is describing their bikinis.

2. Lisa Guerrero – This muy caliente reporter has never worked with Steve Lyons, which may or may not be a bad thing. Lisa Guerrero deserves much more air time, regardless of the game or sport, based purely off of her body. It’s sort of like homecoming court or SGA elections in high school: The pretty girls win. As they rightfully should. In all things. And did you see her in Playboy? Perfect nipples. That goes a long way in my book.

1. Lesley Visser – The Diane Lane of our list, Lesley Visser is still going strong. She started working the NFL sidelines in 1984 – a year after I was born – but she still revs my engine. Visser was the first woman to really cover professional sports, paving the way for the rest of the ladies on our list, and she also pioneered the shoulder-length hair-do, apparently so the players or coaches she was interviewing wouldn’t get aroused. Didn’t work. Visser is as bonerific now as when she began … The MILF of the sports world.

Schadenfreude...Life in New York

Life in New York

Ahhh, it’s like the air is fresher, the sky is bluer, and girls who are marginally attractive in the summer still seem marginally attractive despite having begun that slow winter descent back to winter weight. Baseball has purged itself of Gotham franchises! No longer will I, as a Red Sox fan living in enemy territory be bombarded with caps in various shades of blue with interlocking NY on them. The red B on mine will no longer be looked at and mocked by those whose teams made it to the postseason, which, I might add, I have been diligently watching, as its my duty, Judy.

I can come into the office, and we are all on square one; we are all once again looking forward to sunny spring days scattered across Florida wondering how the season will begin. Sure, in the end, I have nothing against Mets fans save for when they piled on during the Boston massacre, Part II, and they are in fact kind of like Russia is to the US in the geopolitical spectrum: we share a common enemy we are both hell bent on destroying. Yes, in this case, the Yankees equal al-Qaeda…follow me through here.

Who knows what 2007 will bring? It’s already shaping up as one of the craziest offseasons ever anyway, at least in the northeast. Now, you have to add in the fact that the Mets and their fans, who thoroughly figured this was the year they returned to the promised land are looking down the pipeline at a season sans Pedro, an El Duque who may be farther into his forties than he’d care to put on his work visa, an aging Glavine and Trachsel, and a rotation filled with some guys (Maine, Perez, Heilman) who could go either way. Sure the lineup should once again be great in Flushing next year, but clearly it wasn’t good enough this year. Then of course you have the $200 mil. Running choke that is the Yankees, and the walking, breathing ER unit that is my Red Sox, who last played a game what seems like ages ago, and last played a meaningful game like epochs ago. But, alas, at least here in the northeast corridor, we’re all back at square one. Misery loves company…the awesomeness of Schadenfreude.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

A picture is worth a thousand words ...

Your creators, boys and girls. Just so you can put a face with the names. Brandon on the left (licking the picture of ... some hairy guy) and Brendan on the right (GQed with the chin-hold).

Monday, October 16, 2006

Jerseys to Avoid

It isn't easy being a sports fan these days. Free agency is killing the games we love. And free agency is making it hardest on the jersey industry. How many people have an "Owens" 49er jersey in the back of their closet? An "Arrington" Redskins jersey? A "Webber" Kings jersey? Big name players have no allegiance anymore, forcing us to go and buy yet another jersey almost every season. With that in mind, here's a list of the jerseys you may want to avoid at a sporting event, for several different reasons ... (We here at Rich Kotite Banged Your Mom are trying to compile an entire roster - # 00 through # 99 - so please, post a comment with a # and name if you think you've got a winner -- or loser ...)


# 02 – WR Darrell Blackman, North Carolina State Wolfpack ... Not a safe jersey for a white guy at an NC State game.

# 03 – PG Chubby Cox, Washington Bullets ... Mr. And Mrs. Cox went to all of young Chubby's games, but never understood why the announcer's were so hesitant to recognize their young son for his outstanding plays.

# 04 – P Sam Koch, Baltimore Ravens ... "Koch really drilled that one" is something even Ray Lewis laughs at when it comes on over the loudspeaker.

# 05 – D Naif Al Qada, Saudi Arabian National Soccer Team ... Close enough to get a double take during the World Cup. Avoid this jersey if you're in an airport, as well.

# 06 - 1B Joe Adcock, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim ... Joe Adcock. He 'ad some balls, too!

# 07 – C Gregor Fucka, Winterthur FC Barcelona ... This guy has gotten his coach a few technical fouls for just calling out his name.

# 08 – SG Vinny Del Negro, Phoenix Suns ... Again; my caucasian brothers, avoid this one in public.

# 09 – F Ahn Jung-Hwang, Korean National Soccer Team ... The only jersey Michael Jackson owns.

# 10 - F Dean Windass, Bradford City Bantams ... While not pronounced the way you'd think, no one stood behind him on the sidelines regardless.

# 11 - QB Casey Dick, Arkansas Razorbacks ... Not a popular Dick on campus with Mitch Mustain in the picture.

# 12 – PG Pee-Wee Gash, Tennessee Volunteers

# 14 – C Radek Bonk, Montreal Canadiens

# 15 – QB Jim Bob “JB” Cooter, Tennessee Volunteers ... Lots of Volunteers on this list. But I guess that's just the South for you.

# 16 – SF Matt Bonner, Toronto Raptors ... It's pronounced "Bon-ner." But he played in Canada, where it's pronounced "Boner."

# 17 – D Dan Shittu, Watford ... The Hooligans have a good time with Danny Boy in the Premier League.

# 18 – SS Jack Glasscock, Indianapolis Hoosiers ... He must've had a tough time with the ladies.

# 19 – WR Damarius Bilbo, Dallas Cowboys

# 20 – CP J.J. Putz, Seattle Mariners

# 21 – CB Randall Gay, New England Patriots ... No one will buy this jersey in New England, ever.

# 22 – PF Rudy Gay, Memphis Grizzlies ... He may become an all-star, but he's not going to sell a lot of gear.

# 24 – SS Harry Colon, New England Patriots

# 25 – LB Wilford Blowe, Chattanooga Mocs

# 28 – LW Alexander Semin, Washington Capitals ... This guy has some shot.

# 29 – SS Adrian Aye-Darko, Duke Blue Devils ... Do not taunt the brothers with this jersey. Although it's Duke football, so no one would see you if you wore it to the stadium.

#30 - OF Brian Asselstine, Atlanta Braves

# 31 – SP Ted Lilly, Toronto Blue Jays

# 32 – G Ron Tugnutt, Edmonton Oilers ... Wow. Tugnutt. Good goalie.

# 33 – D Zarley Zalapski, Hartford Whalers

# 34 – RB Ben Gay, Cleveland Browns

# 35 – SP Darren Sack, Sonoma State Seawolves

# 36 – LF Johnny “Ugly” Dickshot, Chicago White Sox ... With the last name Dickshot, I found it amazing his nickname was "Ugly." Not very creative teammates in Chicago at that time, I guess.

# 38 – DB Demarcus Faggins, Houston Texans

# 39 – SP Dick Pole, Boston Red Sox ... Boston fans love Dick Pole. And they like this guy, too.

# 40 – SP Chien-Ming Wang, New York Yankees ... I want to hear a "WANG! WANG! WANG!" chant from the Bleacher Creatures on FOX soon and see how Joe Buck reacts.

# 41 – RP Jimmy Gobble, Kansas City Royals ... Poor guy must've had a tough high school career.

# 42 – LB Gary Lovely, Brigham Young Cougars ... At least he's a linebacker.

# 44 – RB Curtis Enis, Chicago Bears ... I know a lot of these jerseys were sold when he was drafted as the Bears savior. I know a lot of letter "P"s were drawn on them when he was a bust.

# 45 – OF Rusty Kuntz, Chicago White Sox ... Wow. Just ... Wow.

# 47 – LB Lucious Pusey, Eastern Illinois Panters ... His parents did not like him as much as his brother, Lemmetouchyour.

#49 - RP Harvey Haddix, Baltimore Orioles ... Harvey Haddix; and balls, too.

# 50 – LB Jeff Gooch, Tampa Bay Buccaneers ... For those of you who don't know, that's the part of your body between your asshole and your ballsack. He has a Super Bowl ring, though.

# 51 - SP Jung Bong, Cincinatti Reds

# 53 – SP Jordan Tata, Toledo Mud Hens ... *giggling*

# 61 – OL Johnny Flowers, Southeastern Louisiana Lions

# 65 – RG Heath Cockburn, Furman Paladins ... My personal favorite. Here's hoping he makes it to the NFL.

# 66 – Driver, Dick Trickle, TropArctic Pontiac ... Trickle is funny. Dick Trickle is unreal.

# 72 – LG Jason Spitz, Green Bay Packers ... Lets hope he never lines up next to a center named Swallows.

# 74 – RT Todd Weiner, Atlanta Falcons ... Weiner. His name is Weiner ... Uhh huh huh, huh ...

# 79 – LT Guy Whimper, New York Giants ... Tough last name for an offensive lineman.

# 80 – TE Alex Spooner, Cornell Big Red ... He's an Ivy Leaguer, so don't feel too bad for him.

# 81 - WR De’Cody Fagg, Florida State Seminoles ... He's an NFL prospect. I can't wait for Mel Kiper to talk about him on Draft Day; mostly because of his size. "I love Fagg here. Fagg fits in great here. Big Fagg."

# 85 – TE Ed Wang, Virginia Tech Hokies

# 87 – TE Kyle Sackrider, Michigan State Spartans ... This name is mind-blowing. What nationality is "SACKRIDER?"

# 90 – DT Quinn Pitcock, The Ohio State University

# 93 – DE Cory Dix, New Hampshire Wildcats

# 96 – DT Pat Kuntz, Notre Dame Fighting Irish

# 98 – Driver, Greg Sacks, Thorn Apple Valley Ford ... I can recall a time when he was being drafted in a race, and the announcer actually said "He is just tapping Sacks, folks. But Sacks is still hanging around. Sacks will not be intimidated."

Monday, October 09, 2006

TO vs. the Bronx Bombers, which was the Bigger Story?

This weekend featured two very major story lines: the return of a certain wide receiver into the jungle of “The Linc” and the epic demise of the $200 mil Bronx Bombers? But which was the bigger story? Which one will have the more long lasting impact? The tale of the tape below:


TO: Fear of bloodlust in Philly, pillboxes raining down on the field, various homophobic/racist catcalls, 1/8th of the fans arrested, possible dismemberment of Owens.

NYY: Really none. After Game 1 it was pretty much assumed this would be a sweep.

Amusing Moment:

TO: The FOX pregame group having to be basically sequestered from the Philly fans, who apparently were being given free beer. All this so as to save Jimmy Johnson’s ass after the last time the crew was in the Iladelph.

NYY: Any New York tabloid backpage.

The Game(s):

TO: Was basically Bledsoe’s second option to Mrs. Terry Glenn all day, which lead to pouting, no TD’s and really a very disappointing final total of 45 yards.

NYY: Detroit’s staff came up big time, Jaret Wright unsurprisingly sucked, as did the Unit, and A-Rod had one hit for the four game series dropping his post 2004 ALCS game 3 line to 5 for 46.

Reality of what Happened:

TO: No injuries, no one tried to bring in a Colt .45 to take him out from the stands (that has been made public anyway), in fact, he was a non-factor largely. But it was a damn entertaining game.

NYY: Instead of just rolling to a sweep, or at worst a four game victory, the Yanks bats fell silent at the hands of the Tigers young staff, and they’re eliminated.

The Future:

TO: The Cowboys dropped to 2.5 games behind the resurgent Birds and TO is looking more and more like a #2 in Big D, leading me to wonder just when his next outburst will be and when Parcells just absolutely loses it.

NYY: Man, what isn’t going to happen? Apparently Torre’s fired, Sweet Lou’s in, A-Rod, Sheff, and Bernie at the very least are gone, Barry Zito or Jason Schmidt is about to become a very rich man likely, and Steinbrenner’s head may just explode. Whether or not this happens before Parcells’ head exploding, I can’t say.

The Winner:

Pregame hype: TO
The game itself: TO

The future: The Bronx Zoo

What's Wrong With the Yankees ... and How to Fix It.

The popular pick to win this years World Series was my New York Yankees, mostly because of the scariest line-up to step to the plate in years, if not ever. Detroit Tigers manager Jim Leyland called this Yankee lineup “Murderer’s Row and Cano.” From top to bottom, every Yankee has been an All-Star; as many as A-Rod’s nine to Cano’s single trip – and they’ve got ex-stud Bernie Williams sitting on the bench, too. Throw in Randy Johnson, Mike Mussina and Mariano Rivera and you’ve got an All-Decade team.

And that was – and will continue to be – the problem.

When the Yankees were collecting their rings in the 90’s, they had some All-Stars, and some MVP candidates and even a few Cy Young hopefuls. But not at every position. And that’s where my thinking kicks in.

Luis Sojo. Scott Brosius. Shane Spencer. Luis Polonia. Chad Curtis. Jimmy Leyritz.

The most clutch of Yankee clutch hits have come off the bats of some of the most random Yankees. Why? Possibly because the opposing pitchers were so frightened of David Justice coming up, Paul O’Neill slapping a double or a Bernie Williams home run. Pitchers aren’t that different in big situations than any other athlete. Much as an offensive lineman knows he has to play a great game to shut down Michael Strahan, or how an opposing center knows he’s got Shaq on the schedule tomorrow; so too does the pitcher know he’s got a dynamic Yankee lineup digging into that box all day. So when they can take a breather, relax for a second in the midst of the onslaught, they make mistakes. Scott Brosius is a World Series MVP because of it. Jim Leyritz will get laid and never pay for a drink every time he’s in the Bronx because of his walk-offs.

And because this New York Yankee team was even better than the last few, well, to put it bluntly, they had no shot. The Yankees should’ve seen this coming – Joe Torre should’ve realized it at the very least – when they didn’t start overtaking the Red Sox until Gary Sheffield and Hideki Matsui were out of the lineup. Torre stripped Melky Cabrera of his potential playoff greatness by inserting a still-injured Matsui back into left. Not only would Andy Phillips’ glove had helped at first, but he would’ve been the lethal no. 9 hitter in that lineup. In my humble opinion, Sal Fasano and Craig Wilson needed to get post-season at-bats for this team to win.

I know it doesn’t make any sense, and yet, it makes all the sense in the world. Those championship teams in the 90’s had players that knew their roles. They advanced the runners, they played stout defense and had tremendous pitching. Sort of like … the Tigers this year.

This Yankee team won’t be seeing that NY on any World Series rings until they remedy this … well, unless they buy Jason Grimsley’s 1999 one off of eBay.

You want the quick fix? In my eyes there are a few possible solutions.

The Joe Torre rumors? Make them reality. Get rid of this lump. Watching Torre in dugout, I thought I was looking at Terry Schiavo in a Yankee uniform: No physical movement, and no brain activity. The reason you’re hearing Lou Piniella’s name as a replacement is because the guy isn’t afraid to kick an All-Star in the ass once in awhile. Torre was a great manager; he won those Series’ in the 90’s with an average team. He knew when to bunt, when to make a pitching change and when to let Scott Brosius swing away. But George Steinbrenner and Brian Cashman made things too easy on him. With an All-Star team on the diamond, you can’t really manage. You just sit there and wait for them to produce the numbers they’ve produced all their lives. Unfortunately, when half of them have injured wrists and the pitchers are all using “Just for Men” before their start, you have to realize they don’t make for a good team. Is it out of the question to bring back Joe Girardi? He’s actually played with a lot of these guys, and won with them and proved he can coach. I want him or Piniella on the bench. And please, please, please bring back Don Zimmer. We can’t win a big game without him!

Other things that needs to be done?

Barry Zito needs to come to town, and Randy Johnson needs to leave it. Carl Pavano needs to either step up or just go ahead and do gay porn full-time. I want Philip Hughes on the roster next season; in the bullpen or the rotation. It worked for the Red Sox with Papelbon, it worked for the Marlins with … every position player on the roster and it worked for the Tigers and Twins with Verlander and Liriano. If the guy is a big prospect, let him prove it.

Gary Sheffield never should’ve came to New York – Vlad Guerrerro should be out there. Now is the chance to let him go, giving us an outfield of Hideki Matsui, Johnny Damon and Bobby Abreu, with Melky Cabrera giving whoever needs a day off a break.

Jason Giambi needs to, first off, discover what shampoo is, put on some non-steroid muscle, and learn to hit to the opposite field. Andy Phillips or Eric Duncan needs to be the full-time first-baseman, and whoever wins the job needs to work endlessly with Don Mattingly to become a stud, the way Nick Johnson never did. Go Nats!

Mike Myers and Scott Proctor need to be shot in the head and left in a dumpster somewhere in the Bronx. The Yankees need middle relief that isn’t cast off by our competition. They also need a set-up man not named Kyle Farnsworth. I’d say Joel Zumaya, but the thought of David Ortiz getting a hold of a 104 MPH fastball and killing a fan in the upper deck with it in a big game scares the shit out of me.

And finally … A lot of people seem to think Alex Rodriguez needs to go somewhere else. I agree completely. It’s short-stop. If Derek Jeter is so dedicated to winning another ring, he needs to go to third base and let A-Rod play SS. Something needs to get this guy back in his zone. Jeter’s got the arm for 3B.

That all happens? The 2007 World Series is the Yankees over the Mets in 5.

A Math Equation

Question: What does $80 million in payroll over the next highest team's payroll get you?

Answer: 1 playoff win.

God I'm happy to be in NYC for the aftermath of this...

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

The 10 Movie Characters That Could Play in the Pro's

10. Matthew McConaughey as Ben Williams, CF – Can’t you see McConaughey playing college baseball for the Longhorns, banging the Dean’s daughter on the pitcher’s mound after a big win? The guy looks like a solid lead-off hitter with some speed and a decent glove. “Angels in the Outfield” should’ve been re-named “Wooderson’s in the Outfield.”

9. Wesley Snipes as Willie Mays Hayes, CF – Snipes seems to find himself in a sports movie once every couple of years, but this was one of his first. As the trash-talking, base stealing Hayes, Snipes comes off as a poor-man’s Kenny Lofton, and could probably have taken some playing time from him had the “Major League” Indians gone to camp with the real Indians.

8. Sinbad as Andre Krimm, DE – “Necessary Roughness” is one of the all-time underrated sports movies of all time, with cameos by a ton of NFL Hall of Famers including Dick Butkus and Earl Campbell (not to mention Evander Holyfield for some reason …). But what put it over the top are two over-the-hill men joining a college team. Scott Bakula didn’t do it for me as a quarterback (even though he rocked in “Major League: Back to the Minors”), but Sinbad looked right at home with a helmet on. The guy is huge, and I could really see him chasing someone around the gridiron.

7. Timothy Busfield as Lou Collins, 1B – The guy just looks like a first baseman. Granted, I don’t see him as the power hitter the movie portrays him to be, but he’s a good club-house guy, he gets the clutch hits when the Twins need him and he looked good in the glove in “Little Big League.”

6. Kim Wayans as Latisha Jansen, PF – What, I can’t give the WNBA some love? “Juwanna Mann” is a funny movie if you’ve never seen it, and this sister of all those Wayans’ boys is perfect – she plays a big, ugly forward who comes off as a sort of bi-sexual version of Lisa Leslie. I could see her in the league. Actually, I think I have …

5. Andrew Bryniarski as Steve Lattimer, DT – As good as this guy was in “Any Given Sunday,” he was ten times better as a steroid-abusing defensive lineman in “The Program.” The guy was a bodybuilder before he made it into some movies, so he has the size, and if you’ve ever seen this movie, you’d know he’s got the intensity to bust some heads.

4. LL Cool J as Julian Washington, RB – “Any Given Sunday” had Terrell Owens in it, Ricky Watters in it and a plethora of NFL icons, and LL Cool J was able to hold his own and look like he belonged out on that field. Oliver Stone directed this movie, and actually kicked people off the set who’d lied about their football experience (like Sean “P. Puff Diddy Daddy” Combs, who was originally cast as the quarterback Jamie Foxx played). Actually, before LL was cast, Stone auditioned a bunch of actors for the role, including Darnell Autry, but said “none of them looked like they could be pro football players.” (Autry, by the way, played for the Philadelphia Eagles and Chicago Bears and even appeared on the cover of “Sports Illustrated” when his Northwestern team upset a loaded Penn State team that featured three of the top 10 picks in that years NFL Draft.)

3. Benicio Del Toro as Juan Primo, OF – Most people would watch this movie and simply say, “Man, what was Robert De Niro thinking?” or “Man, Wesley Snipes looks just like Barry Bonds!” but I look at this movie and think, “Man, Del Toro looks like a ballplayer.” Playing fan-favorite Juan Primo, Del Toro is a big, cocky Latino ball player who ultimately gets killed in a sauna by De Niro, but not before showing off a Major League swing like Pujols and some glove work like Vizquel.

2. Kevin Costner as Crash Davis, C – Since it tops most lists as the best sports movie ever, you have to figure it’s because “Bull Durham” has a real ball-player feel to it, and you get almost 100% of that from Costner. I’m not saying this guy could push Johnny Bench out of the Hall of Fame, but he seems like the type of strong defensive catcher who hits 8th on an NL team and is a fan-favorite. A Sal Fasano for the movie world.

1. Dennis Haysbert as Pedro Cerrano, OF – I don’t know if you see it, but this guy reminds me of a more in-shape David Ortiz. He’s a big, black, bald stud of a hitter who can’t hit a curveball, can’t really play the field, but he’s a fantasy stud with those long-balls and RBIs. Haysbert nailed the role of Cerrano in all three of the “Major League” movies, and I’ve never been in a MLB locker room, but I can imagine that there is one nut like him in there … talking to his bats, using voodoo to hit a splitter, etc. Pedro Cerrano isn’t number one in your program, but he’s number one on my list.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Yankees Likability: From Scrubs to Sheff

Brandon didn't want me to post this, calling it too Simmons-esque, but hey, whatever, I'm in a pissy mood here at work and I walked by Derek Lowe today in lower Manhattan. So, whatever.

(PS if it was indeed Lowe, of which I'm 95% sure, he had gross hair, hadn't shaved in a week, was wearing an all Nike basketball ensemble, and was with a woman clearly not his wife. He may have reaked of gin, too, but he passed by me too quickly...of course, how the hell was he up at 9am anyway? And despite it all, can we get him back in Boston? Please?)

Anyway, enjoy.

The Yankees are good. Damn good. And it pains me, a diehard Red Sox fan to admit it. That said, come October 2, Papi will be golfing in Green Bay whereas Jeter will be building up his Postseason legend (maybe) while A-Rod will once again be hitting .125 (.067 with runners in scoring position) while on a combo of Prozac, Ritalin and HGH (hey, whatever, rumormongering…it’s the internet, baby!). Since I’ll be forced to watch Big Stein’s minions for a month or so, I figured it’d be a good time to go over which Yankees it’s Ok to secretly respect and which under no circumstances can be rooted for. In fact, it’s a shame Giambi’s intestinal parasite from ’04 didn’t make its way on to them.

Oh, and PS: Kevin Brown…Greatest. Yankee. Ever.

Enjoy the list.

Group I: The Scrubs (TJ Beam, Brian Bruney, Sean Henn, Jeff Karstens, Darrell Rasner, Jose Veras, Wil Nieves, Andy Cannizaro, Nick Green, Aaron Guiel, Andy Phillips, Kevin Thompson)

Who are you? Do I know you? No. Were 95% of you enjoying the Boston Massacre Part II in Columbus? Yes. Will any of you not be in AAA next year? Likely not. Sure some of you like Phillips, Green, and Guiel were actually on the team most of the season, but only because the Yanks had no outfielders for six weeks. Andy Phillips=Bubba Crosby=Shane Spencer=Kevin Maas. There, I said it. I can’t hate you because a) I’ve never otherwise heard of you b) you’ve accomplished nada in the league in pinstripes and c) Trenton will be treating you just fine next season.

Group II: The “Not True” Yankees (Octavio Dotel, Cory Lidle, Scott Proctor, Ron Villone, Craig Wilson)

These are guys who will all likely be on the postseason roster, but are fairly new to their evilness and thus haven’t really had the opportunity yet to piss America off (especially its 51st state, Red Sox Nation). But they could with one key hit or relief appearance. I was tempted to make Craig Wilson a little more evil, as my fantasy team in 2004 was briefly called “The Mullets” for him and well…some other guy we’ll be discussing soon.

Group III: Give them Two More Years and I’ll Stick a Bullet in their Kneecap (Kyle Farnsworth, Chien-Ming Wang, Sal Fasano, Robinson Cano, Bobby Abreu, Melky Cabrera)

Most of these guys are also pretty new to being minions of the devil, but unlike the previous group are key contributors and have already started to piss me off. For example, Farnsworth may have been a bust, but he had that nasty curve against Papi in one of the earlier series in a clutch, bases loaded situation. Wang is getting dangerously…good, Fasano’s mustache is wayyyy too adored by his fellow guidos such as my co-blogger, Cano is also getting a little too big for his pinstriped britches, Abreu should be despised all the way on I-95 from the Philly fans he gave up on through the Mets fans he’ll burn in the World Series (so help me God, I hope I’m wrong) through Connecticut and Massachusetts, and Melky deserves scorn for those god-damned “Got Melky?” t-Shirts that keep popping up around the New York metro area. Seriously, though, after the “Got Rings?” version, are the Yankees just sponsored by The Dairy Farmers of America or what?

Group IV: I Despise You, But Damnit, I Respect You! (Mike Mussina, Derek Jeter, Mariano Rivera, Bernie Williams

These are the guys, that hey, I can admit, if the left their pinstripes at home and put on a red B, hell, I’d be happy. Here’s a brief synopsis of my feelings on each guy:

Moose: Seems like a good enough guy. Smart, likes to drink apparently, helped those kids from his hometown in PA when TWA flight 800 went down in 1996. Never has won a World Series, came off as decent in Faithful. Hey, he’s my “favorite” Yankee.

Jeter: Look, I don’t LIKE the guy. I mean he’s smug and a douchebag and all, and that play he made jumping into the stands on 2004? Well, Pokey Reese DID THE EXACT SAME THING A FEW INNINGS BEFORE JETER DID. But Pokey Reese isn’t Mr. Madison Ave., so no one remembers this. But, I won’t lie, when Jeter comes to the plate in a clutch situation, I just know it’s going to go poorly. That’s the definition of a good player. I just hope he has to retire a D-Ray or something.

Mo: Hey, the guy handed us the ALCS in 2004, so I got nothing but love. Plus, his reaction at the Sox 2005 home opener was affable. He seems like a decent guy, and hey, he has been pretty good during his career. And like I said, since the Sox kinda sorta have his number, I don’t hate him as much as I could.

Bernie: Well, I mean, he does play jazz flute, er, guitar, which is kinda lame. And he did spurn the Sox in ’97 when they offered him more money than Stein did, but Bernie’s loyalty, even if it is to evil, is still somewhat noble. Plus, now, he’s like watching Brett Favre in the outfield, where even if you’re a Bears fan, you just kind of feel bad. Though as far as I know, Favre has yet to release a crappy CD.

Group V: The ex-Sox (John Damon, Mike Myers)

Ok you dumbasses (idiots?) It’s not that we as Sox fans dislike you personally, it’s that we dislike your uniform and all who inhabit it. We remember all you did in 2004, but that’s the past now, and your pinstripes are your present and future, hence, why you get four word salutes now. Anyway, from Feeding the Monster it seems like Scott Boras was the real reason you’re in New York now Mr. Damon, and Theo not re-signing Myers was definitely a mistake, leaving us with whoever the hell Javier Lopez is as the only lefty in the pen. Still, you guys are freaking turncoats!

Group VI: I Just Mock You (Jaret Wright, Randy Johnson, Jason Giambi, Carl Pavano Double Play Rod)

These are the guys Yankee fans hate and everybody else, including us Sox fans hate too. Not because they’re really any good, mind you, but rather because they’re the overpaid mercenaries of the Evil Empire, all brought in to thus far (unsuccessfully, hahaha) win Big Stein that ring that’s alluded him these past 6 years. They’re cripples, juicers, geriatrics, or borderline psychos. Take a guess who’s who, and note A-Rod may be all at once! Wright’s just a tobacco spittin’ washout, Pavano spends more time wrecking his car in Florida than he does pitch, the Unit’s intimidating only cameramen nowadays, Giambi’s a known cheating fraud who is I guarantee still on one of his admitted drugs of choice, HGH, and A-Rod is well, yeah, see last week’s SI. The suit story is so damn good.

Group VII: I. Want. You. To. Die. (Jorge Posada, Miguel Cairo, Hideki Matsui, Gary Sheffield)

Ok, these are the guys that are the worst of the worst, the mast assholian of all. Assholian being a newly created word. Let’s analyze why each of these individuals will find themselves in Dante’s 9th ring of hell upon death:

Cairo: Some may question why he’s on the list. The answer is simple. I had to deal with Brandon’s idiotic comments about how underrated he was from 2003-04. He just annoys me in a way I’m sure somebody like Kevin Youkilis annoys him. Youuuuuukkkk!!!

Matsui: The guy is a lethal hitter. His family also would’ve been ended in Hiroshima if I had anything to do with it. He is the ugliest player in baseball today, oh wait except for…

Posada: He looks like a toad and has balls the size of one. Seriously, can anybody ever forget him jawing with Pedro in the 2003 ALCS? What a loser. He’s an overrated perennial all-star, constantly keeping more deserving guys out. He’s so good the Unit’s run through about 3 “personal” catchers since he got to the team. Of course, the good news as long as he’s there Stein won’t buy off Joe Mauer’s soul. I hope.
And now, as mentioned, the King of all Pinstriped Petulance, Mr. Gary Sheffield: Oh Sheff, how do I hate you? Let me count the ways. But I won’t, as this has run on too long anyway. All I’ll say is, you’re crosseyed, old, your pre-swing bat twirling is gay, you did steroids and were Barry Bonds’ bitch all at once, you got in a fight with a fan and a grounds crew worker, and, my personal favorite, you offered up this gem of a quote, right before you know what happened in mid-October, 2004, “They're a walking disaster. They act like they're tough, how they care so much about winning, but it's all a front. They're just a bunch of characters." Thanks Sheff, enjoy splitting time with Melky in the playoffs.

Monday, October 02, 2006

We've Moved!

Because of bandwidth issues, you can now find Richie K. right here. Look for much more constant snarky posting from me, and editorials from Brandon now that we have that problem solved.


This Week's Worst: Coaches to Reach the Big One

Because we're just mean SOB's (I am, anyway), I decided that what with baseball's playoffs staring us in the face it would be a good idea to take a look at the worst coaches/managers to ever reach the championship in sports history. Yes, I am aware that reaching a championship game/series is a great accomplishment, but hey, sometimes you catch lightning in a bottle for a few weeks and then regress back to mediocrity, or worse. I'm sure Cubs fans will agree, if Dusty Baker (#5) can make the World Series, well hey, there's hope out there for all the Jim Tracy's of the world.
Without further ado, here it is:

10. Mike Hargrove. Let's take a look: Manny Ramirez, Jim Thome, Roberto Alomar, Omar Vizquel, Richie Sexson, Matt Williams, Brian Giles, Bartolo Colon, Sandy Alomar, and David Justice. ALL ON ONE FREAKING TEAM! Now granted not all these guys had hit their peaks yet, but come on, this was an uber-stacked squad that won 86 games in a weak AL Central in 1997, then made a run, then lost to the Mercenary Marlins. And then there was the 1995 loss to the Braves who went a combined 2-8 in all World Series games after that. And his record with the M's? Well let's just say The Human Rain Delay hasn't exactly been The Reignman in Safeco. (Yes! Worked a Shawn Kemp reference in!)

9. Raymond Berry. Bill Belichick, he ain't. The only other Pats coach to lead them to the Super Bowl, Berry (a helluva tight end in his day) is the quintessential lightning in a bottle guy. Unfortunately for him, Steve Grogan, Tony Eason, et al, Richard Dent, The Fridge, and the rest of the Shufflers don't like lightning. In fact, William Perry probably has tried to eat it at some point.

8. Brian Billick. This "Quarterback Guru" was hired to instill life in a comatose Ravens offense. What's happened since? Well, his defense carried Trent "I'm a backup behind Alex Smith now" Dilfer to a championship. Marvin Lewis, his stellar defensive coordinator is now a top head coach in Cincinnati, and while the team looks good this year, the offense is lead by veteran pickup Steve McNair, not his project, Kyle Boller who's screwed Paris Hilton almost as much as he has Ravens fans. Before the season, despite the city's first championship since the '83 O's, fans were calling for his smirky head.

7. Bob Brenly. This guy may be the quintessential, "Hey look at this, I have the 2 best players in the game right now on my side, this is easy!" manager. So good he was fired not long after winning a championship for a guy who turned out to be a criminal, then eventually replaced him with the guy who'd been fired for Hargrove. Game set match Bobbo.

6. Barry Switzer, Cowboys version. Shall we run the play once? Sure! Didin't work? How 'bout twice! He owes Neil O'Donnell a Christmas card for eternity. Of course, he was great at OU, if you like your national champions packing heat...

5. Dusty Baker. He owes it all to BALCO, baby! For further reference on his qualifications as a manager, see: http://firedustybaker.com/. That is all.

4. Mike Milbury. Hey, as a GM, he suddenly looks like a genius in the post-Let's give DiPietro a 15 year deal, why not? But as a coach, well, let's just say I don't think the people of Long Island and Boston are too sad to see him in their rear view mirrors on the bench. In case you were wondering, the answer is, he took the 89-90 Bruins to the finals where they recieved a 4-1 smackdown by the Gretzky-less Oilers.

3. Paul Hewitt. Who you ask? The guy who got Luke Schenscher (sp?) to the finals before obliteration by UCONN in 2004. Yeah, thought you might've forgotten that final. Since, he's a whopping 31-29, 8-20 in the ACC. He makes the list over Mike Davis, who got a bum rap. Seriously.

2. Jim Harrick. I mean, I got a good job and all, but how good would my GPA have been if I had taken Fundamentals of Basketball 101 with his son? Like how many licks it takes to reach the center of a Tootsie Pop, the word will never know. This cheat was basically the anti-Wooden at UCLA, but he did win it all once, so hey, he makes the list. In the meantime, I think I read he's in like Fort Wayne coaching in the D-League, and the O'Bannon brothers went on to stellar NBA careers.

And now...#1...
1. Bill Callahan. I just have no idea how this happened, I really don't. I mean, I don't even have anything to say. Historians will one day look at the annals of the Super Bowl, and go "Who the hell was this guy?" They will also look at the history of Nebraska coaches and say the same thing. He only got the job because Frank Solich was roofied up, anyway.
There you have it, kids.
This ain’t your grandfather’s National Football League anymore. Hell, it's not even your dad's. And I blame it all on Paul Tagliabue, flags and domes.
The past few years I’ve seen referees digging around their pants more than a Wall Street broker leaving a Chinatown massage parlor. Take some recent Sunday and Monday night games for a prime example. Madden, Michaels, Kornheiser, Theissman and Tirico heaped more praise on the safeties in these games than any other position, and rightfully so. Sean Taylor, Troy Polamalu, Donovin Darius and Roy Williams are premiere talents at their positions. Each one drew at least one personal foul in their respected games, and for what? Taylor hit a receiver too hard. Darius led with his head. And not even Joe Theissman, who you may recall suffered a broken freaking leg in the middle of a game at the hands of one of the great NFL assassins of all-time, agreed with the calls. “Let the players play,” he said, in some form or another, as they all did. And yet each and every quarterback and wide receiver looks to the refs with those puppy-dog eyes when they get hit too hard, or too near the sidelines or too close to their endorsement-money faces … It is getting to be too damned much.
Now I understand that there is the possibility for serious injury on that field. I understand that the quarterback is vulnerable on most plays. But isn’t that why they wear the equipment? Isn’t that why helmets aren’t made of leather anymore? And isn’t that why God invented a soccer ball?
I find it offensive to the sanctity of the game that quarterbacks – who knowingly leave their pocket of protection – get to slide on their butts to avoid contact. How many flags get thrown when the right guard and the nose tackle butt heads? Their helmets are scarred and discolored after the game to the point that they look like pre-schoolers scribbled on them. But if that same nose tackle breaks through the line and puts the top of his head into that 6’5”, 260 lb., Nike-sponsored quarterback’s? 15 yards and a fine from the league office. I almost vomited when I heard a personal foul get called on someone for "extending their arms" at the quarterback. Those are the type of calls that make my penis get soft.
Call me crazy, but I think the XFL and Arena Football had/have a lot more going for them than we gave it credit for. Fair catches? If you want to “fair catch” a ball, do it in the outfield on a softball field, ladies. You want a “fair” chance to catch a ball on the gridiron? Punt returners used to be the craziest sons of bitches on the team, and special teams players used to be human bullets flying downfield. They weren't as good as the stars of the offense and defense, but they earned their respect by taking the hits the fast receivers and stud linebackers didn't want to deal with. Now? A failed college quarterback who relied too much on the option is back there, and he daintily waves his arm above his head to alert the guys who carry Ray Lewis' gym bag that he's not going to try and advance this ball ...
Have we forgotten the history of this game? The greats that used to roam that proverbial frozen tundra? Almost every compilation of NFL defensive talent – whether it’s by the NFL office itself or Sports Illustrated or some 35-year old living in his mother’s basement wearing a throwback jersey – includes players that would get flagged and fined in today’s game. You disagree? Ronnie Lott led with his head more than Jenna Jameson. Deacon Jones’ personal head-slap – the signature move of a Hall of Fame player – is now a personal foul. Dick Butkus did everything in his power to make sure a quarterback didn’t play all four quarters. Ditto for Lawrence Taylor. You think Joe Greene got his “Mean” nickname for letting a QB slide in front of him? Night Train Lane? And it’s a two-way street. I’m sure Johnny Unitas throws up in his grave when he sees how pampered his position has become. And now these guys are breaking all his records? If Sammy Baugh and Otto Graham weren’t hit by a forearm in the nose every time they got tackled, the record books would be much different. Those are tough quarterbacks, those are the men that revolutionized the position … And for what? So J.P. Losman can scramble a few yards and awkwardly slide without getting his head taken off? When Trent Green got smashed a few weeks ago, I was the only one in the bar who stood up and cheered. Some men actually groaned and shouted for flags and fines immediately. For what? A football player making a football play? Jesus Christ people, for an extra $24 a month you can watch all the Premier League you want! Buy a sixer of Stella Artois and get the hell off that barstool.
And what about domes? Fran Tarkenton played in Minnesota – outside – for most of his 18-year career. Put that guy on some turf and Mike Vick would simply be “the black Tark” with less of an arm. I’m not a Green Bay Packers fan, or a Chicago Bears fan, but they’ve earned my respect more than their purple-clad opponents. And now they’re putting teams inside if the stadium was too hot! Arizona and their Pink Taco Stadium is as air-conditioned as can be; don’t want Matt Leinart breaking a sweat out there …
Maybe I’m a little too old-school, but I want my hits hard and high, I want my quarterbacks fighting for that extra yard and I want my toes to be freezing off when I’m sitting there waiting for it all to happen.
- Brandon
While Terrell Owens’ press-conference was going on, ESPN didn’t have the network capabilities to televise all the other TO related ones going on – well actually they did, but you can’t pull “Cheap Seats,” “ESPN Classics: 2004 WNBA Finals Game 4” and a repeat of the “World Series of Poker” with no notice.

Lucky for you, we here at Rich Kotite Banged Your Mom have gotten a hold of the majority of the transcripts:

Drew Rosenhaus (Owens’ agent) – “No comment.”

Bill Parcells (Owens’ coach) – “Terry Glenn is fine, don’t worry. Terry has impressed me all season long with his play and lack of suicide attempts, and Terry is going to be fine this week for the game with Tennessee.”

Michael Irvin (Owens’ boyfriend) – “TO is the greatest receiver in the game, bar none. Look at my suit. Isn’t it horrible? Well it’s not as horrible as the world would be without Terrell Owens, that’s for damn sure. You talking to the ‘Playmaker.’ I talk to TO all the time, and he has not once mentioned suicide to me. I mean, yeah, when I was making fun of how many Super Bowl rings I had compared to him, and how I went to ‘da U’ and he didn’t and how people in Dallas still wish I was on the team, he wasn’t happy, but he was not suicidal. Oh, and vote for Emmit on ABC’s ‘Dancing with the Stars!”

Kim Etheredge (Owens’ publicist) – “I need a new job.”

Steve Mariucci (Owens’ former coach with the 49ers) – “Thank you God for answering my prayers.”

Jeff Garcia (Owens’ former quarterback with the 49ers) – “Who’s gay now? Overdosing on supplements? Did you get them from the Queer Eye Guys, TO? I did see Greg Anderson around your locker a bit in San Fran ... I gave him my number but he never called me. I always assumed he just had a thing for dark meat, but ... Wait, what am I saying?"

Andy Reid (Owens’ former coach with the Eagles) – “Thank you God for answering my prayers.”

Donovan McNabb (Owens’ former quarterback with the Eagles) – “I told him to keep my name out his mouth. I didn’t tell him to put a bunch of sleeping pills in it, though.”

Every Eagles/Giants/Redskins/49ers fan in the country – “What do you mean ‘attempted?’ He didn’t die? Son of a –”

Fantasy football owners (of T.O.) - "Wait, he's playing Sunday, right? Right? Can the Dallas police leak that? Plaxico's got a bye! Dammit!"
I’m getting all negative on you, I know, but with the latest batch of playoffs coming in a week, full of memorable moments and legend-making performances, it seems like a good time to rain on the parade of that stuff once again, and point out some more mistakes, gaffes, and crap that’s happened on the biggest stages in sports. Here, today, I present for your enjoyment the Rich Kotite approved Top 10 Worst Major Games of my lifetime. These are not all blowouts mind you, a couple were moderately close, a couple didn’t live up to hype, but most are routs. They were all for one reason or another so boring as to cause me to almost want to change the channel. Enjoy.

10. 2004 ALCS Game 7. Very memorable and pleasurable for us Sox fans, but let’s be honest here. After the marathon games 4 and 5, the Schilling bloody sock game 6 that also featured A-Rod’s slap and riot police circling around Yankee Stadium (we were at that game), this game was a total letdown. It was a beatdown and a coronation yes, but a great game, no. It was over by the 3rd inning. If I wasn’t a Sox fan, I’ll admit I’d have turned it off --- I remember Brandon wasn’t paying attention after the 6th. So much hype, so little competition involved. Red Sox 10, Yankees 3.

9. Super Bowl XXXVII. When a game was so bad it’s memorable for a guy hustling to force a fumble on a showboating defender, well, it couldn’t have been very good. That, and Michael Jackson’s halftime performance where he froze for what seemed like 10 minutes. Just more pain for Buffalo fans in this one and the beginning of the Cowboys dynasty. Cowboys 52, Bills 17.

8. 2002 NCAA basketball final. I have never seen an uglier major college basketball game than this “defensive battle” between the Terps and Hoosiers. The field goal percentages in this game were a whopping 43.8% for Maryland vs. 34.5% for Indiana. No player recorded more than Juan Dixon’s 18 points. Indiana had 25 points in the first half. This game was just close enough to force you to keep watching, but ugly enough to make you cringe. Maryland 64, Indiana 52.

7. Super Bowl XX. Notice a trend beginning? The last 22 years have featured some heinous Super Bowls. Luckily I was two for this Super Bowl, so I don’t have much (read: any) recollection of it. I do watch those ESPN/NFL Films half hour recaps a lot though, and I know any time you pull your starter in a championship game, that’s not good. One of the ugliest ugly late 1980s early 1990s Super Bowls where the NFC had such a huge edge over the AFC. I also like making gratuitous Fridge Perry references, if you haven’t noticed already. Bears 46, Pats 10. How the pats even got 10 on the Monsters of the Midway I’m unsure.

6. Super Bowl XXXV. The modern version of Super Bowl XX, where a dominant D completely obliterated the other team’s offense. I’ve never seen a more frightened QB than Kerry Collins. If only the Ravens had a QB other than Trent Dilfer behind center, this could have easily been the worst Super Bowl ever. Alas, it’s only second. The highlight was seeing the Walt Disney commercial the next day, featuring none other than Dilfer, as Super Bowl MVP Ray Lewis wasn’t featured for…legal transgressions. Ravens 34, Giants 7.

5. 1991 Stanley Cup Game 6. Pittsburgh 8, Minnesota 0. Clinching game of a world championship and you lose by 8 goals? How is that possible? Did the team all get the flu the night before? I mean they did win two games after all. There are blowouts between two teams of a different class, but this one goes in the “Didn’t Bother to Show Up” genre. As mentioned, Penguins 8, North Stars 0.

4. 1985 World Series Game 7. Cards fans love to blame ump Don Denkinger and his infamous bad call at first in Game 6, but they seem to have collective amnesia on Bret Saberhagen and the Royals’ dominance in game 7. Another one you can chalk up in the “Didn’t Bother to Show Up” genre. Losing 11-0 in the World Series is pretty much the equivalent of losing 8-0 in the Stanley Cup. This game also represents the Royals last playoff game, strangely enough, or not so much. Royals 11, Cardinals 0.

3. 2002 Rose Bowl. I may be being harsher on this game than it deserves, but honestly, Nebraska had no business in that game whatsoever. No one was beating the U that year, but certainly given its Fiesta Bowl dominance the Joey Harrington led Oregon Ducks could have put up a better fight than the Huskers did. This game was over early, filled with controversy, began Eric Crouch’s fall from grace, and left a bad taste in America’s mouth. Miami 37, Nebraska 14.

2. 2005 Orange Bowl. Just like had occurred a mere three years before, a Big XII team snuck in the back door to reach the BCS championship game only to get pounded while another comparable team was shut out and then beat its bowl opponent. In this case the router was USC, the routee was Oklahoma, and the team on the outside was Auburn. What puts this game over the ’02 Rose Bowl is the final score. This one was so bad I actually did change the channel. I never do that, but here, I made an exception. OU really hasn’t been the same since. USC 55, Oklahoma 19.

1. Super Bowl XXIV. I was five for this game and a huge Elway fan. Well, I’ll put it to you this way, I remember being on my bed bawling as my parents consoled me around halftime. It was that bad. It took me maybe five years to get over it and respect the 49ers. I still cringe when I see these NFL films “highlights.” This was the biggest rout on the biggest stage in sports. It more than deserves the title of Worst Major Game of My Lifetime. And, come on, you knew it HAD to be a Super Bowl. 49ers 55, Broncos 10. Congratulations George Seifert, you made a five-year-old cry, you big meanie.