Wednesday, September 26, 2007

What the Hell?

My God:
On a street corner at the edge of a Kroger's parking lot, near a janitorial supply store and just blocks from the main campus drag of restaurants and shops, Ohio State freshman quarterback Antonio Henton at 8:27 Monday night became the inevitable Buckeye on the police blotter.

With $19 in his pocket, Henton solicited an undercover police officer on the corner of North High Street and 6th Avenue, offering $20 for sex, according to Franklin County Municipal Court records. Henton, the Buckeyes' 20-year-old third-string quarterback from Fort Valley, Ga., entered a plea of not guilty Tuesday morning, posted a $274 bond and was released. He is expected to have his court date set today.

Wow. Just... wow. I'm baffled. I don't even know where to begin.

First of all, what was Antonio Henton thinking? I used to live a few blocks from that Kroger (which students called Ghetto Kroger, due to its location and crappiness), I would frequent it quite often and if their hookers are anywhere near the quality of their food/store.... yikes.

The thing is, if I were to go start looking for hookers in Columbus, Ghetto Kroger would probably be the last place I'd go to. But hey, maybe I'm naive; Ghetto Kroger could be the spot to pick up a whore. I've gotten terrible food there, I've been asked for money repeatedly while shopping amd I've seen a guy take a piss, on his own car, in the middle of the parking lot, but I'd like to think I'd have noticed hookers wandering about. And the fact that he only offered $20 kinda confirms my suspicions on the quality of the product

You know what the most shocking thing is? A member of the Ohio State football team felt he had to find a hooker (at fucking Ghetto Kroger) in order to get laid (and he couldn't even pay for the full $20? He only had $19 on him? Where's all the boosters when you need 'em?) What's happened to campus? Can the guy not find a house party? Can he not go to Four Kegs? This shouldn't be difficult for someone in Henton's situation.

It's a sad day for the program.

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":

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Now I'm All Pissed Off

Charlie Manuel:

Charlie Manuel, former Tribe manager and hitting coach, says his current Philadelphia Phillies are a better offensive club than the Indians of Albert Belle, Jim Thome, Roberto Alomar, Eddie Murray, Kenny Lofton and gang.

"This offense might be the best I've ever been around," Manuel told Philadelphia reporters Tuesday. "They come everyday to play. You don't hear them complain and moan. They have more fight [than my Indians teams], they've got more determination, better attitudes and they come to win.

"I think our Cleveland teams had a lot of great talent and they liked to play, but they liked to play basically to put up numbers and promote their career. These guys are definitely different."

Best he's been around, huh? Not so much.

2007 Phillies team stats
(through 152 games):
Runs: 841
Doubles: 341
Home Runs: 196
Average: .275
OPS: .813
RBI: 802
AB/HR: 27.1
Not bad by any means. But let's check out those 1995 Indians (in 144 games!):
Runs: 840
Doubles: 279
Home Runs: 207
Average: .291
OPS: .839
RBI: 803
AB/HR: 24.3
Well, the 1995 Tribe had more home runs, a better average and a better OPS than the 2007 Phillies. The Phillies scored one more run and hit more doubles, but they've done it in 12 more games.

But hey, they have more determination, a better attitude and they come to win. Unlike those 1995 Indians who went to the World Series.

Oh, and by the way, it's not just the 1995 team that was better, the 1999 version was the first team to score 1,000 in a season since 1950. (And if the goal of the offense is to score more runs, I'd say the '99 Indians trump Manuel's Phillies as well).

On a semi related note, in 1995 Albert Belle got completely robbed of the AL MVP. Yes, I know it's 12 years later but I'm still pissed off. I mean, look at these stats:

Albert Belle: .317 average, 1.091 OPS, 52 2B, 50 HR, 126 RBI, 80 K and 73 BB
Mo Vaughn: .300 average, .963 OPS, 28 2B, 39 HR, 126 RBI, 150 K and 68 BB

Just... I ...God damn I hate Mo Vaughn....

Honestly, how is this even a debate? Belle had a better average, 11 more home runs, 24(!) more doubles, walked more and struck out less often (almost half!). I'm pretty sure we can trace my hatred of Boston sports back to this moment.

And yes, I'm preemptively angry about the looming Beckett/Sabathia Cy Young fiasco.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Finish Them

The Tigers came into Cleveland needing at least win the three game series if they wanted a shot at the division. It wasn't that far fetched; they only had to face C.C. and not Carmona, and they had Rogers and Verlander go against Byrd and Westbrook.

Well they lost the first two games and now they get to face Sabathia this afternoon. Good luck with that. This series has already pretty much buried the Tigers, but a Tribe win today would absolutely finish them off.

C.C., end it.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

RIP Robert Jordan

My favorite author, Robert Jordan (real name James Oliver Rigney Jr), passed away on Sunday at the age of 58. I learned of his death late last night and I've had this cloud of sadness hanging over me throughout the day.

To say I enjoyed his Wheel of Time series is a vast understatement. I discovered Jordan's books while in the 7th grade on a recommendation from the school librarian and I was done for. There was no going back; the breadth, the depth, the detail, the writing... just wow.

The plot? If I even started to try to explain the plot, I believe I'd go insane. Complex doesn't even begin it... but at the same time, it's deceptively simple. Here's how the AP describes it:
The books follow Rand al'Thor on his journey to battle ultimate evil.
There ya go. That's how he filled up 11 books (and counting).

I've probably read the first book, Eye of the World, at least seven or eight times (but I could very well be in double figures by now) and each time I get that same sense of wonderment when I open its pages. The series just sucks you in and doesn't let you out.

I almost feel bad (or maybe it's a sick pleasure) when I recommend these books to friends and family. By simply handing them Eye of the World, I know I've completely destroyed any and all free time they may have in the next month or so.

And that's not just me. I remember being at Bonnaroo a few years ago and seeing my buddy's girlfriend reading Shadows Rising (book 4) and we had the following conversation:

"dude, is she reading Robert Jordan?"
"Ya, I gave the books to her, she's addicted"
"You know you're a bastard, right?"
"Oh I'm, aware"

You don't put his books down- you make time to read. I've read his books on trips, in school (even while walking home from school- yes, that's how engrossed I'd get), work breaks, I'd wake up in the middle of the night just to read a few chapters. I devoured these books.

Ever since then, consciously or subconsciously, I've held every other book I've read up against Jordan's standard. Will this book suck me in like Jordan? Will the world the characters inhabit ('real' or fantasy) be as fully realized as WoT? Will I gladly devote the countless hours reading (and rereading) the exploits? Sadly, very few books have stacked up.

Even the later books in the series, which some (including me) have criticized for a slow plot, have a special magic about them. Upon rereading the series I've found myself immensely enjoying the 'slow' books more than I thought I would; maybe the first time through I was disappointed because they weren't what I was expecting, but there is still that special something that keeps you reading 'til 2AM.

Part of me is sad for selfish reasons as well. I'm not going to be able to read the ending as he intended it. At the time of his death, Jordan was writing the final chapter of his 12 part series. I guess he has been dictating plot threads and endings to multiple authors and tape recorders, but it won't be the same. Don't get me wrong, I'll be happy just to get some closure and resolution to this story I've been following almost half of my lifetime (when I started reading WoT, I was younger than the main characters and I've since surpassed them). But no matter how the series ends, I won't be able to get over the fact that it won't be exactly as Jordan envisioned.

What can you do? I, for one, may just go open up Eye of the World another time. I was going to wait until book 12 came out to reread the series, but now is a good of time as ever.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Random Thoughts from the Weekend

1. Not me. I'm not nearly as confident in the Buckeyes as some people.

2. For one thing, Ohio State was lucky to just be down 7-3 at halftime. The Huskies dropped a few INTs and made some bone head plays at the end of long drives. I'm not saying Ohio State didn't deserve to win, but the final score (33-14) wasn't indicative of how close the game was (even if you don't include Brandon Saine's last TD run as time expired, it was closer than 27-14).

3. I do not trust Todd Boeckman at all. He got away with a lot of mistakes (seriously, how many dropped INT's were there?).

4. That being said, he put up a great second half. He made the throws when he had to, but I still hold my breath whenever he lets loose. I'd like to see the team play well for an entire game.

5. [Insert "Locker has room for improvement" pun here] I think Huskies redshirt-freshman QB James Locker is going to be really damn good. I was scared to death of him the entire game; I really think the Buckeyes won this game due to Locker's inexperience (he made some dumb throws after driving Washington down the field).

6. Or was it that 'bend but don't break' defense. I'm not a big fan of the bending defense- eventually, if you face someone good enough, it is gonna break. That being said, James Laurinaitis just makes plays.

7. I miss Mike Nugent. Just sayin'....

8. Better game from Beanie Wells. 135 yards and a TD. Not bad. But they still don't convert short yardage situations as well as they should. But hopefully this performance will calm him down and he'll find a groove.

9. Still worried. Anyone feel comfortable about those night road games at Minnesota, Purdue and Penn State yet?

10. More derision please. The pundits and the media told us that Charlie Weiss was the greatest offensive mind ever and now, instead of mocking him as inept, they just shrug and go 'isn't it weird to see a Charlie Weiss team with no offensive TDs in three games'. The guy sucks and he can't rely on Ty Willingham's players anymore (good call ND alumni!).

11. Michigan still sucks. 1-2 in three games at home. Well done boys.

12. I'm still alive (but barely). So how many 'survival leagues' did the Browns fuck up yesterday? Two guys got knocked out in my league (one of 'em picked against the Browns both weeks. Suck it). I had Denver... I am lucky.

13. Derek Anderson, WTF. 5 TDs, 328 yards. Damn, what can I say. I've never been an Anderson guy (and if anyone of you expected this, please raise your hand...) but wow. Hats off and more please.

14. Can I really nitpick after a 5 TD performance? Fuck yes, I'm from Cleveland. I don't want to sound like a hater (cause Anderson played great), but there were more than a few plays where the receivers saved his ass, especially Winslow and Edwards- they stepped up big time. He made the throws when he had too, don't get me wrong, but he missed a lot too (and the Bengals dropped more than one INT).

15. Jamal Lewis is a beast. 216 yards, 1 TD. He can thank Joe Thomas for that 65 yard TD (amazing what drafting talented linemen will do, huh?). I wish the Browns had gotten Lewis another TD at the end.

16. That's my only coaching complaint (while I don't agree with another 4th-and Vickers play, I can somewhat understand it)- not getting Lewis another TD. With 5:52 to go in the game and 3 and goal at the 1-yard line and leading 48-38, the Browns didn't simply pound Jamal Lewis two more times. Lewis had ran over the Bengal defense that entire drive (51 yards in three plays) and I didn't like the Browns throwing the ball on 3 and 1. Reward your work horse and pound Lewis twice; if he doesn't get in, you've wasted more time and Cincinnati is pinned back at it's own 1. Either way, Cincinnati needed two TD's to win (though the 3 points took away a the chance at OT) and if Lewis gets in, they need 3 scores and are basically done.

17. Seriously, what the hell has happened: MMQB:

Offensive Player of the Week

Cleveland QB Derek Anderson and Cleveland RB Jamal Lewis. "Romeo was great last night,'' Anderson said via cell phone after the game, speaking of coach Romeo Crennel. "Calm, reassuring. I think he thought we'd go out and play really well today.''

But this well? In the long NFL history of the Browns, which dates to 1950, they'd never had a game in which a back ran for 100 yards, a quarterback threw for more than 300, and two receivers exceeded 100 yards. In the 51-45 win over Cincinnati -- which could well have its worst defense in recent years -- Anderson was 20 of 33 for 328 yards. Lewis, who has so much dirt shoveled on him that I think if you watered him he'd sprout buds, had the best running day of the season: 28 carries, 215 yards. For one Sunday, there was joy in Mudville.

18. How is this happening? Chaos theory.

19. That sure was fun, right? Terry Pluto says that the Browns fans deserved the win. I'll say.

20. I love Josh Cribbs. Kent State baby (if the Browns were any good, he'd be right up there with Devin Hester)

21. With Pluto leaving for the PD, Patrick McManamon gets more column space (and I like it). I particularly enjoyed this:

The Browns announce a starter one week, trade him two days later. One game into the season, the backup is promoted and the guy who was cut is re-signed.

These are fantasy-type moves, but they've not been limited to this year.

Trent Dilfer and Reuben Droughns were signed to contract extensions, then dealt a year later. Jeff Faine was jettisoned against the wishes of the offensive coaches. Kevin Shaffer signed a huge deal, then was discussed in a trade after the drafting of Joe Thomas.

The quarterback position has been a complete yo-yo, with an environment that makes it next to impossible for anyone to succeed.

Consider offensive coordinator.

Maurice Carthon was kept too long, then Jeff Davidson tried to make it work with Carthon's offense the rest of last season. When Davidson was very blunt with Savage about his assessment of the team's talent ` hint: he wasn't real positive ` he was removed from consideration to keep the job. Davidson got the same job with the Carolina Panthers and looked pretty smart in the team's opening game.

21. I'm sick of spygate. I hate the overblown coverage of any controversy in sports; I'll tell ya right now ESPN, whenever something that involves TO, Barry Bonds or some similar shit goes down, I stay away from your station. I can't stand it.

22. More spygate (sorry). Surprisingly, Bill Simmons is whining (I like Simmons, I really do, but this God damned Boston victimization really pisses me off):
That reminds me, everyone's talking about the other teams and implying they were the victims. What about Pats fans? How did we deserve this? Our favorite team cheated, we lost a No. 1 pick, our coach pulled the football version of the Watergate break-in, our entire mini-dynasty has been tainted according to the outside world. ... Seriously, what did we ever do other than support a perpetually crappy franchise with a bad stadium for years and years and years? Do you think we wanted any of this to happen? All week, I almost felt like I did something wrong just because I rooted for these guys. Well, no more. Call them cheaters, call them villains, call them the evil empire, but it's still my team. You can't disown your team just because it does something sleazy, just like you can't disown a close family member for doing something sleazy. Your team is your team. I hate what happened, I think it has been terribly overblown, we paid the price, and we're moving on. At least until Belichick's version of the 17-minute missing Nixon tape is released.
What about Pats fans? Seriously, your team cheats and you're complaining? Really? Imagine if Joe Torre and the Yankees got caught cheating, what the hell would Simmons be saying? He'd be laying it on. For the past five years we've been bombarded with stories and quotes about how the Patriots are a model franchise and that they're just "a team of football players", they do everything the right way blah blah fucking blah. Look, the Patriots are far and away the best team in the NFL, the Red Sox have a sick rotation and will be World Series favorites and the Celtics just got KG and Ray Allen- I'm sorry if no one is considering the feelings of Patriots' fans during spygate. Take your medicine and shut the fuck up.

22. Big series begins tonight. Tribe vs Tigers. Byrd goes tonight against Kenny Rogers (who the Tribe never seems to hit hard). Hopefully that changes tonight.

23. Maybe some fans will show up. And maybe the local sports media will give 'em half the coverage the Browns get. Who am I kidding...

24. Is it weird to say that this team reminds me of the 90's Yankees? They hit well, they pitch well, they make opposing pitchers work and though they hit for power, they don't have any big mashers (though they have a bunch of guys in the mid 20s). I think this is good. (Also, I didn't notice this before but: is Grady our Jeter?)

25. Though, they are missing a few things. They don't have a closer anywhere near as lights out as Mariano Rivera, they don't anyone near as ugly as the horse faced Scott Brosius and they don't have anyone who is nearly as big of a douche bag as Paul O'Neil.

26. Not a bad way to do it (and thank God that it wasn't against Cleveland). Good for Jim Thome. Always like him and I never really got mad that he left (same with Manny).

27. I am confused. I saw Colbert and Stewart announce Ricky Gervais but then they said that since "Ricky Gervais could not be here tonight. Instead we're going to give this to our friend, Steve Carell" Carell then ran on stage and jumped around with Colbert and Stewart (which was awesome). Gervais won. Colbert and Stewart's bit where they made fun of award shows was good too.

28. Really? How the hell did James freaking Spader beat out both Tony Soprano and Tommy Gavin. Come on (but hey, at least 30 Rock won something)

29. Thank God it's back. I freaking love It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia. The first two this year were pretty solid, but not great. Some parts where brilliant (the ali baba sword? Green man? Awesome). Check out the videos on their website, I enjoyed 'em.

30. That didn't go as planned. So last Tuesday I was planning on attending a concert and seeing the Coral and the Arctic Monkeys. Now, I like both bands, but I wouldn't have made the trip to Columbus on a weeknight just to see the Arctic Monkeys- I love the Coral. Anyways, we get there and there are no t-shirts for the Coral. Not good. Turns out they dropped out of the tour and got replaced by Voxtrot. This blew chunks for multiple reasons: A) I didn't get to hear any acid pirate rock B) I didn't get to buy a Coral t-shirt (and I really wanted on) and C) Voxtrot sucks ass (check out the comments in the link). On the plus side, the Arctic Monkeys were better than I was expecting (to the point where I'd go out of my way to see 'em again). But seriously, Voxtrot was awful; whiny, skinny indie kids playing boring music while acting like they were rocking out. I was not a fan (and neither were other people, the beer line was long as hell when Voxtrot was up).

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Simmons and Oden

I read the whole column and all I noticed was A) a "why the hell is this even there" Celtics reference B) Simmons likes being right and C) Simmons likes to jump to conclusion.

Besides that, fun read.

Um, kinda


Charlie Frye had little to recommend him except earnestness as a lifelong Browns fan and geographical happenstance as a college player at Akron.

Both gave him a pass for a time. The rub was that eventually he had to pass, too.

Maybe Frye bought some time with fans (and Terry Pluto) simply by being an Akron product and local boy, but I hope to God that Frye's hometown never came up in meeting between Romeo Crennel and Phil Savage (and if it did come up, fire both of them right now).

There seems to be some idea that the only reason Frye was around this season was because he was a "hometown kid". I don't particularly think so, maybe that played a part in things. A small part.

But ya know what? Frye won the job in training camp! We all saw that right? We all saw Derek Anderson lose the job to Charlie Frye (and he did lose the job, he was ahead of Frye coming into training camp). Sure, we also saw Brady Quinn outshine both of 'em, but he wasn't starting the season as the number 1 QB. So Frye won the job.

And then was awful.

Did Frye need to be traded (or cut)? Probably. Does the thought process of the Browns management scare the hell out of me? My God yes (a year ago they thought Frye was so well off that they didn't need a veteran QB to help out). Are we now simply waiting for Brady Quinn to take the field?

You bet.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

So lemme get this straight....

Charlie Frye sucks so bad that they have to trade him for a 6th round pick after one terrible half.... so they can hand the keys to the guy who couldn't beat out Charlie Frye in training camp.

My confidence in management is skyrocketing...

Monday, September 10, 2007

Random Thoughts from the Weekend

1. Ohio State hasn't impressed me... Yes, they're 2-0, so they're doing better than some teams, but damn a 3-2 first half versus Akron? Not good. They weren't exactly impressive against Youngstown State either. I'm not feeling particularly good about facing Washington next weekend.

2. I'm also not excited for some other games. Mainly the night games at Minnesota, Purdue and Penn State. Ohio State teams haven't exactly played well at night under Tressel and the team doesn't look that strong this year.

3. Their ranking confuses me too. Right now, they're 10 in both polls, which seems high to me (some people have them ranked 3rd. 3?!?! are you kidding me? I love me some Buckeyes, but God damn).

4. I was expecting more from Beanie Wells. Bill Livingston isn't impressed and says Wells needs to step up (though some of the problem has been play calling). I'm not too worried (yet) but I was hoping he'd run all over Youngstown State and Akron and he's been average thus far.

5. What's better than Michigan starting the season 0-2? Michigan AND Notre Dame starting the season 0-2. The Battle of Suck is next Saturday. Can both teams lose? Can Lloyd Carr be fired at halftime (Charlie Frye style)? What do I root for? A 0-3 Michigan or a 0-3 Charlie Weiss? Or do I simply root for injuries? So many questions...

6. Antonio Pittman got cut. That's not good. But he got picked up by St. Louis. Kinda surprising.

7. The Browns suck. This shouldn't exactly shock anyone, but I'm sure it will (though I didn't expect them to play that poorly against Pittsburgh, my lord).

8. That didn't work. Maybe they should've eased Eric Steinbach into the starting lineup eh?

9. When did we start referring to Romeo Crennel as RAC? This was all over the message boards yesterday and even in a teaser link for a Bud Shaw column.

10. Peter King has some Browns tidbits in his MMQB column:

Quote of the Week II

"BRAY-dee! BRAY-dee! BRAY-dee!''

-- The Cleveland Browns Stadium crowd, four minutes and 23 seconds into the new season. Literally. That's how long it took them to call for coach Romeo Crennel to make Brady Quinn his starting quarterback. But Crennel did not listen. He replaced Charlie Frye, all right, in the second quarter -- but with Derek Anderson, not the 22nd pick in April's draft.


f. Teams that have to feel ridiculously depressed after Sunday: St. Louis, Buffalo, Kansas City, the Jets and Cleveland.

g. Wait -- give me a separate category for Cleveland. What I wonder after watching chunks of that game is, how can you work for an entire training camp and look like that? "If the gamut runs from A to Z,'' GM Phil Savage said last night, "that was a Z.'' Maybe a letter doesn't exist for what that was.


3. I think the most overplayed story of Week 1 was the subterfuge angle of former players spilling the beans to the enemy. Just like Jason David's information on the Indy offense meant nothing to New Orleans' defense in the Colts' 41-10 beatdown of the Saints, the importation of former Patriot Reche Caldwell for a look-see and the Patriots bringing in ex-Jets Tim Dwight and Bobby Hamilton (on the QT Friday) meant nothing to the outcome of the Patriots' win over the Jets. Maybe the Jets learned a scintilla about the physical condition of Randy Moss -- maybe -- but as far as strategy or signals or audible signs ... fiction.

"It's the most overrated thing in sports,'' said Peyton Manning, who went on to give me a great example of how a foreign agent can actually hurt a team's preparation. "The classic was when we're playing Cleveland and they got [former Colts backup quarterback and offensive assistant] Kelly Holcomb and Bruce Arians. It's Tony Dungy's first year, maybe 2002. So the Browns grill Holcomb all week, 'You got to give us something' and he says, 'I'm telling you, Peyton's going to change it up. He knows I'm here, he's going to give you a dummy audible early. I'm telling you, he's not stupid. So, just play your keys.'

"They're up 16-3, I think, at the half," said Manning. "Second half, we get a good drive going and it's fourth-and-three. So we run our bread and butter play, a little five-yard under route. Well, I signal the play and Holcomb -- it's the same signal -- so he says, 'Ah, now I'm going to help them.' So he says, 'They're running the five-yard under play! Five-yard under play!"

"And so you can see it on the film -- they're going, 'Watch the slants, watch the slants.' So they load up, all inside technique, and they go into a man defense. Well, I see this and I see the defenders all change up -- that's the thing about the no-huddle, I can see this -- and I kept the receivers doing the same thing and I checked to a zone running play and it's only six guys who gotta know -- the linemen and the back [James Mungro]. And he goes 29 yards untouched for a touchdown. And so their guys go to Holcomb, all pissed off, 'So, they're running a slant, huh? Thanks a freaking lot, Holcomb.'

So, maybe that sums it up right there, be careful of what you think you know.''

4. I think, still, that Romeo Crennel has to stand strong and not put Quinn on the field. Not yet, anyway. Four of the next five games, before Cleveland's bye, come against teams that finished in the NFL's top 10 in defensive rankings last year. "Our whole thought was Charlie [Frye] and Derek [Anderson] keeping us functional through the tough part of our schedule,'' Savage told me. And now? "If you ask 70,000 people in our stadium today, the process got accelerated. We'll meet [Monday morning] and discuss it. But I think you run into trouble if you change your plans after one game. Back in 1999, we lost to Pittsburgh 43-0 in the first game of the season with Ty Detmer playing and we threw Tim Couch in there. You saw how that turned out. Once Brady goes in, that's it; there's no turning back. To do it after the first week ...''

Look, the Browns know this season's a wash. Frye got sacked five times in the first 23 minutes against Pittsburgh. Do you want the kid shellshocked in September, or do you want him to play after he's had more than 92 snaps (the real number) with the first unit since he signed his contract?

11. I'm not sure where I'm at with Quinn. Obviously, Frye and Anderson both suck ass. This can't be denied. Sure, we may prefer one over the other, but neither is a good option. Quinn is going to get his shot this year, it's only a matter of time. So what's the point of sitting him? I mean, would anyone be worried about him if he had to face the 'vaunted' Cincinnati defense next week?

12. Well, Quinn has one point in his favor... He led the Browns into the Post-preseason.

13. That's some fine coaching there Lou. I'm glad we had that quarterback competition in the preseason so they could scrap the guy by halftime. Good times (with coin flips!). And I know Frye sucked ass. He was terrible (Terry Pluto tries to defend him by saying that the Steelers didn't blitz Anderson nearly as much). It's not the losses that piss me off so much, it's the terrible coaching; these don't look prepared at all. The whole offense was a mess (again) and this shit is getting old.

14. Har. Livingston would've started the coin.

15. But hey.... at least Romeo won't name his starter for next week. I'm sure that gives the team all the confidence they need.

16. I know the Browns are going to be the big talk of the day, but... we're all aware that the Indians kick major ass, right? They just split a four game series with the Angels. These guys are good, they have a bona fide number 1 starter in Sabathia and they should be able to make some noise in the playoffs.

17. Grady Sizemore is awesome. Last night in the fourth inning he bunted for a hit, stole second base and then scored on grounder that didn't leave the infield. Well done young sir.

18. This annoys me:

The Tribe knocked around Jered Weaver (11-7, 4.00) for six runs on nine hits in five innings. The man who delivered the big hit - a three-run homer in the five-run fourth inning - was the last position player to make the club out of spring training. Ryan Garko hit Weaver's first pitch over the bullpens in left field for a 4-2 lead.

It was Garko's second homer of the series. His parents, Michael and Elaine, were in the stands. So was most of his senior class from Servite High School in Walnut, Calif.

"Garko had to make the club out of spring training," said Wedge. "Then we weren't sure how much he was going to play. But Andy Marte got hurt, Casey Blake moved to third and Garko has played better than a lot of people thought at first base."

19. Honestly? Has Garko really played that much better than people would've thought? Cause he's about where I'd thought he'd be. And look, I know that he had to earn his job and all that, but the fact that the Tribe's brass was prepared to sit Garko for Casey Blake scares me.

20. Speaking of really surprising things. People can't actually be shocked that Randy Moss put up those numbers yesterday, right? I know he's a 'locker room' problem and he missed preseason games and blah blah blah... but come on. This guy made Jeff George into an MVP candidate, I think he'll be okay with Tom Brady.

21. Ha. Kenny Lofton thinks he's putting finishing touches on Hall of Fame career. And I know it's a humorous article and all... but say Kenny had stayed with Cleveland all these years and started every day (rather than jumping around and platooning). I'm not saying he'd be a HoF'er, but he'd be though of rather differently at least.

22. AL MVP... I know A-Rod is going to win it (and he probably should) but I'd be willing to bet that if Victor Martinez played in Boston or New York, he'd be higher than 'rest of our top 10'.

23. Troy Glaus, really? I, for one, am shocked! Shocked I say!

24. When can the Brett Boone reports come out? Come on, he went from 'scrappy second baseman' to '140 RBI machine'. I've been pissed about this for years.

25. Faaaantastic. Alan Houston is 95% sure he's going to return. If he ends up taking time away from Boobie Gibson, I will be one pissed blogger.

26. Big day today. Yup, yup and yup.

27. It's really happening... with a logo and every everything.

28. Humpy poopy, just watch it. I know this guy.

29. About time. Help! is being released on DVD with a deluxe treatment. Now if we could get Let it Be...

30. Sweet concert tomorrow night. I'm seeing the Arctic Monkeys and the Coral. The Arctic Monkeys are the headliner (not surprising) but I more excited to see the Coral. They've been one of my favorite bands for awhile now and I'm really excited to see them live. I can't really describe their sound, because they change things up from album to album, but the song writing and performance is always quality; they're kinda hard to pin down. Their new one, Roots and Echoes, is a more stripped down affair and it is quite good (I probably still love their self titled debut the most, but that was my introduction and I've played that thing a ton). They aren't very well known (I've never met someone else who's even aware of 'em- well, besides people who've heard of them through me) and I hope that they'll get some stateside exposure from this tour.

The Coral - Roots and Echoes - Jacquelin:

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Not Good

Under Romeo Crennel:

11/13/2005 - Pittsburgh 34, Cleveland 21
12/24/2005 - Pittsburgh 41, Cleveland 0
11/19/2006 - Pittsburgh 34, Cleveland 20
12/17/2006 - Pittsburgh 27, Cleveland 7
09/09/2007 - Pittsburgh 34, Cleveland 7

Also, it is my opinion that Brady Quinn didn't get any playing solely because Romeo doesn't want to have to answer "when does Brady start?" questions this week (and honestly, a blow out is the perfect time to get a rookie QB some reps).

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Thursday, September 06, 2007

More Cowher

This time from the Sports Guy (and hey, at least he doesn't have the Browns ranked 32nd):
28. Cleveland Browns
One year away from being turned around by Bill Cowher and his rejuvenated spittle.
Is it really that much of a lock? WKNR 850 plays a blurb from Jim Rome discussing this possibility.
Should I start preparing myself now? A team with a ND quarterback, a Miami tight end, a Michigan wide receiver and a former Raven (who gained 500 yards against the Browns in one season) at running back... all coached by a former Steeler?

But hey, if they win games.... I root for whoever.

Survival and Pick 'Em Leagues

I know this is late (since the season, you know, starts tonight) but if anyone is interested in joining a(nother) pick 'em or survival league, I'm hosting a couple through yahoo fantasy sports.

The info is as such:

Survival Football: Leauge ID:13453 password: firefight
Pro Pick 'Em: League ID: 37888 password: kitna

Good luck and all that.

Um, did Leigh Bodden not get the memo?

This is the year that the Browns aren't supposed to fuck up. This is the year the team takes off. Getting arrested during the first week of the season wasn't on the agenda:
Browns starting cornerback Leigh Bodden ended up in the Cleveland City Jail on Wednesday after being arrested at Cleveland-Hopkins International Airport. He was accused of aggravated disorderly conduct, resisting arrest and various traffic offenses.

According to Lt. Thomas Stacho, public information officer for the Cleveland Police Department, Bodden was spotted about 6:30 p.m. driving a 2004 GMC Yukon the wrong way on the lower roadway for arriving flights. When a police officer instructed Bodden to stop, he didn't immediately, but complied with a second request, pulling his vehicle to the curb and walking away.

God dammit. I'm sure Romeo is loving this, he's only had a quarter back controversy and a first round hold out in training camp. Things were supposed to become kinda normal for the season. But he can't care for this distraction for Week 1, especially when the first week's opponent thinks that their former coach is going to take his job.

(On a semi related note: this is dumb and means nothing at all)

Wednesday, September 05, 2007


But as you appreciate that the Indians beat Johan Santana five times this season and further realize that C.C. Sabathia and Fausto Carmona won all five of those games between them, not only should one think about what the Indians may be like in a short series in October should they get there, but realize what Sabathia has done to help put the Indians six games ahead of the Tigers in the AL Central.

Click down the list of pitchers Sabathia has faced. He beat Santana three times. He was matched up with Justin Verlander twice in five days on May 26 and 31, and won both games. He has also lost to Verlander and dropped a 1-0 decision to Daisuke Matsuzaka.

He's first in the AL in wins (16) and innings pitched (211), second in complete games (three) and fourth in strikeouts (182).

Think what having the Indians go 5-1 in his starts against Santana and Verlander means to the Indians in the standings, and right now Sabathia also has to get consideration for votes in the top 10 in the AL MVP balloting.
They just keep winning games, it is actually kinda amazing at this point. And they win them in crazy ways; last at-bat walks and home runs, Garko hit taking a weird hop and even in spite of Casey Blake taking off on a fly ball with no outs.

They just keep winning. Hopefully Cleveland fans will notice.