Monday, September 24, 2007

Random Thoughts from the Weekend

1. Northwestern is a terrible football team. I'm not sure how else to say it. They suck.

2. I'm not sure what else to say. This is one of those wins that college football pundits love (lots of scoring, a blowout, big numbers, etc) but doesn't mean squat. Its like when Texas beats up on Rice or something; people salivate over the big numbers, but it's really just running up the score on a bad team.

3. Not that I'm complaining or anything. But I'm still scared to death of these upcoming night-road games. And destroying a Northwestern team (that lost to Duke) at home really doesn't do a whole lot for me. Personally, I'm not taking anything away from this game. Is it nice to see them destroy a team? Sure, but said team lost to Duke.

4. Dammit Penn State. Losing to Michigan? Come on. Now the team up North is 2-2 (and don't get me wrong, I love it) instead of 1-3.

5. Also, does Michigan ever play a road game? Seriously.

6. Maybe they should've kept Ty Willingham. 0-4 for the first time ever, well done Notre Dame.

7. I agree. Bud Shaw says (among other things) that the Browns didn't deserve to be as close as a Phil Dawson field goal. I concur.

8. More Shaw. He also points out that the Browns have given up 529 rushing yards in 3 games. That is beyond awful. The defense has (mostly) gotten a pass due to the overall ineptness of the offense, but they are equally as bad. The missed tackles, the lack of QB pressure... this has been a problem since '99.

9. More defense. Eric Wright needs to be benched. He looks lost out there and he consistently gives up the big play. I think Wright will work out eventually, but he needs play some nickel or something for right now.

10. Kamerion Wimbley got his first sack(s) of the year. So that is kinda nice, I guess... I wish the rest of the defensive line put some pressure on the QB as well.

11. Right... 'inconsistent'. I would go with 'bad'. Anderson made a ton of mistakes, got picked up twice, consistently threw into coverage and for some reason burned a timeout on a 3rd and 40 in the first quarter. On second thought, that's a good TO, you don't want to take a 5 yard penalty and put yourself into a 3rd and 45.

12. The dirt bugs me as well. I don't know how much it really affected Anderson's (or the Browns') play, but I do agree that it looks absolutely terrible. I also agree that Kellen Winslow kicks ass and that, in general, the Browns receivers deserve more praise.

13. You're kidding. Terry Pluto loves Josh Cribbs. As do I. I don't understand why the Browns don't use him more in the offense (well, besides the fact that they've f'd up their QB situation and they're on their 85th offensive coordinator in three years). Cribbs needs to be used on more than just end-arounds and QB draws; have him decoy (cause if you only have him out there for trick plays... well, you aren't exactly tricking anyone).

14. More Pluto. He says this game was winnable but the Browns didn't come out prepared. This seems to be one of Romeo's trademarks (besides losing dumb replays). The Browns never seem to be prepared. Pluto says the Browns didn't need to be great in order to win, just solid. That is completely true and yet, sad.

15. That Mike Williams? Wow, I was completely unaware that he was on the Raiders. At least he didn't drop any touchdown passes or commit any huge turnovers...

16. How much time did the Cincinnati game buy Anderson? Does it get him to the bye-week? What if the offense lays an egg against the Ravens this week? How long does Romeo wait? Personally, I think Quinn can lead the team better right now than Anderson (seriously, that 3rd and 40 timeout fucking killed me. That drive was already depressing enough).

17. You know what's is scary? There's no major injuries on defense. Sure, Andra Davis is a bit under the weather and Willie McGinest is out, but no one is making plays. I'm not sure I can name anyone on the Browns defensive line besides Ted Washington (and that is simply because the announcers point out how grotesquely fat he is every week).

18. Wait, scratch that. Simon Fraser. OSU!!

19. Tell us how you really feel. Pat McManamon sounds a wee bit disgusted. Can't exactly blame him...

20. Happy thoughts! The Tribe celebrates! Consider them rebuilt. Word.

21. That saying... While part of me loves the work Shapiro has done, part of me thinks the Tribe got a bit lucky this year (that not you don't need luck or that you don't make your own luck by doing diligent work). They were ready to platoon Garko at first (or send him to to AAA), Fausto didn't start the year in the rotation, the offseason acquisitions didn't exactly pan out (Barfield, Nixon, Delluci, Hernandez, Foulke) and they didn't really make a move at the deadline. They've relied on guys brought up from the minors to compensate for the mistakes (and like I said, the fact that they've been able to do this reflects well on Shaprio's work with the farm system).

22. I dunno, maybe that's what you need. The '04 Red Sox would've had A-Rod at shortstop if they could've had their way... guess that worked out.

23. Not sure if I like the pun, but I'm with ya. Bill Livingston calls the Tribe a 'feel-better story'. He also says that the Tribe is winning with tomorrows players today, which is exactly right. This is a really young team, full of guys who've had 'down' years. The Tribe should be contending for awhile (or at least as long as C.C. is here).

24. Will they be another Ohio bridesmaid? I think the Tribe has a great chance to get to the World Series (having C.C. and Carmona will do that) but I'm wary of another 2nd place finish (like the two Buckeye teams and the Cavaliers). And don't get me wrong, I refuse to bitch about this (like a certain city in the New England area), because, the reality is, we're fortunate enough to have these great to semi great teams here. I'd rather have my teams lose in the final round than not even get the shot. Would I rather Tribe had won in 1997? Of course. But which season do you remember more fondly, the 1997 or 2003? I'll take 2nd place over last any day (though, obviously, I'd love a 1st).

25. It's articles like this that almost make me root for A-Rod. Of course, this is also why I love FJM.

26. Cavs news? Wah? Sasha Pavlovic's agent is threatening to take his client to Europe. Windhorst explains that this is highly unlikely.

27. I'm a dork. I'm really excited for the new Heroes tonight. I'll also be tuning into Journeyman, which starts tonight and stars Kevin McKidd (who was great in Rome).

28. Fantasy update (because you care). I start McNabb and Big Ben goes off. I start Big Ben and McNabb goes off. And Ladainian Tomlinson hasn't done shit yet. I'm really close to being 0-3. Not good. I sucked in Pick 'Em this week as well. At least Baltimore saved my ass in Survival...

29. Story and music time. So I caught Reel Big Fish a few weeks back at the Agora. As always, they kicked ass. But when I arrived at the show, one of the opening bands was playing and everyone was singing along. I was blown away. I mean, these guys sounded pretty good and all, but the entire place seemed to know all the lyrics to all their songs. The band? Streetlight Manifesto. Consider me a convert. I've had their songs playing almost continuously for the past month. Here is "A Better Place, A Better Time":

30. More music, more ska music. So I've always been a fan of Reel Big Fish and their brand of ska, but I've rarely ventured out for more ska music. Not that I don't like, but from my experience, there isn't a lot of difference between a bad ska band and a mediocre ska band. But I've found that there's a very noticeable difference between a okay band and a really good band (the former is almost unlistenable while the latter I'll love til the day I die). So after I was blown away by Streetlight Manifesto, I went searching for more ska goodness. I ended up with the Mad Caddies. Consider them the latter. Here is "Last Breath":


LargeBill said...

OSU: Looked great, but were the Buckeyes great or NW truly awful (or a little of both). Still don't know what to think of this team. Crushing NW tells us nothing about how they will do against Penn St. Worse they killed me by scoring so many points. I took the under thinking the defense would stuff NW and 30 - 7 would be final score. Ouch!
ND: I do think they pulled the plug on Willingham too quick. However, the bigger mistake was giving Weiss a ten year contract.
BROWNS: UGH! Completely agree with the unprepared assessment.
INDIANS: Go Tribe! It does seem that the team won despite some managerial decisions. Shapiro does well at evaluating minor leaguers, but tends to overrate other teams major league players. Did anyone expect meaningful contributions from Trot Nixon? Playoffs are a crap shoot where anything can happen. Whether we win it all or not we need to make some changes before next year. Questions all over the infield.

Erik said...

I'd have a hard time finding a recent World Series team that wasn't lucky. Look at the offense the '05 White Sox won with. Scott Podsednik is a destitute, penniless, third-world starving man's Johnny Damon. Tadahito Iguchi was released this year.

Seriously, Joe Crede? Juan Uribe? Aaron Rowand? But the pitching was unreal for about a month, and the White Sox were the champs, despite the fact that their offense was a borderline-joke outside of Jermaine Dye and Paul Konerko.

The Tigers won the opposite way last year, with a get-me-over pitching staff featuring flamethrowers that burned out this year. When you're coaxing a great year out of Jason Grilli, you know the stars are aligning.

The Indians, in my slightly-biased opinion, are a more complete team than either one of those teams. Of course, that's not going to stop them from having to face their demons and beat the Yankees and Red Sox to get to the World Series.

But, hey, if the Indians can pull it off, no one on the East Coast will be able to talk. The Indians will have won a championship, fair and square, by beating the big boys.

Ben said...

The next two weeks will tell me what I need to know about this OSU team. Big Ten games, on the road, at night...

and ya, the Tribe has stunk against the Yanks and Red Sox this season, but I still think they match up well (though, Borowski scares the shit out of me, 40+ saves or no); Cleveland doesn't rely on a few hitters to hit, it seems everyone in this lineup has somewhere between 20 and 30 homeruns. Sure, there's no big masher, but there ain't a lot of easy outs (especially since Barfield is on the bench)