Thursday, March 29, 2012

Here Are The Two Old Geezers Who Fought Because Of The Kentucky vs Louisville Rivalry

Yeah I know what you are thinking. This is a clear case of a "Hate Crime." Both of these old fuckers can't stand each other because one wears Kentucky blue while the other wears Louisville blood red. It's just a matter of time before Jessie Jackson and that other fat bastard show up for the cameras.

Anyways on to the actual game this weekend. Has there ever been a bigger match up of two coaches who just ooze sleaziness? You have Calipari vs Pitino. It's like rooting for your favorite politician or car salesman. Two dirty dirtbags who five years from now will be long gone from the Bluegrass state but will leave probation behind.

It hurts to say but I will be rooting for Kentucky here. Not because I like them or have some blind allegiance to a SEC team like some of my inbred friends down here in Atlanta but because I have cold hard cash on them winning the National Title. I may not like Kentucky, Calipari, or that kid with a smear shit stain for an eyebrow but I do like the green.

Video via The Big Lead via Kentucky Sports Radio

Georgia Football Loves Their Pot Brownies

Returning All-American safety Bacari Rambo came back for his senior season to not only improve his draft status, have fun in Athens and hopefully get his degree (seriously do they give those out?) but to partake in some pot brownies during Spring Break.

Yes you read that right. Rambo has been suspended the first 4 games of the season because he failed a drug test and is blaming the pot brownies according to his high school coach.

Rambo tested positive after eating some brownies that he did not realize contained marijuana during a spring break trip with friends to Panama City, Fla., according to Ingram, who has talked to Rambo.

“Some kids had them that were staying with him and he said he got high,” Ingram said. “He thought the things had marijuana in them. He sat there a couple of hours and didn’t know what to do. He said he if he turned himself in he’d get a four-game suspension for a second offense.”

Rambo was suspended for the season-opener last year against Boise State. He tied for second in the nation in interceptions.

“He said he was tested five or six times last year and came back clean,” Ingram said. “He said, 'Coach, I’m not stupid. I came back to the University of Georgia to be an All-American two years in a row. I could have went in the NFL.’”

Ingram, who said he speaks to Rambo a couple of times a week, portrayed Rambo as a two-time victim of circumstance.

Losing Rambo is huge considering the Bulldogs secondary is already depleted with depth issues. In fact last week they made the puzzling move of switching positions of freshman All-American WR Malcolm Mitchell to cornerback and now it becomes more apparent why they had to make the move. Cornerback Sanders Commings is suspended for the first 2 games and the other corner Branden Smith is also facing at least an one game suspension for possession of marijuana. Three other players including two corners were kicked off the team in February when they stole items from a dorm room.

Luckily for the Dawgs their schedule isn't too difficult early on with Buffalo, Florida Atlantic, and Vanderbilt within the first 4 games but the trip in week 2 to Columbia, Missouri to face a Mizzou team that will be hyped up playing it's first SEC game. Oh and did I mention starting linebacker Alec Ogletree is suspended two games for violation of team rules too?

Basically the same shit happens every offseason for Georgia. It's a good thing they gave head coach Mark Richt a big extension though with his stellar 3 year run going.

My Thoughts On The Notre Dame Quarterback Position

The biggest question going into this spring for the Notre Dame football program was who would earn the starting quarterback position going into the 2012 season? If you watched last season you clearly see the difference between Notre Dame being a 11-2 or 12-1 BCS team and instead finishing a disappointing 8-5 again last season were the obvious deficiencies in the quarterback position. Last season Dayne Crist, Tommy Rees, and Andrew Hendrix all did one thing that held Notre Dame's program from being elite: they turned the ball over.

Crist was suppose to be the next Brady Quinn. He looked the part and had the size, smarts, and charisma to become "the guy." Unfortunately multiple knee injuries and a "deer in headlights" performance when big situations were needed from Dayne prevented him from reaching his potential. Crist was benched after a horrific first half against South Florida in the first game. Crist has now transferred to Kansas to finish out his career. Sophomore Tommy Rees replaced Crist in South Florida and despite having some good moments (led a spirited 2nd half comeback vs USF) he quickly earned the nickname "Turnover Tommy." Rees is the least talented of all the returning QBs on the roster but he has the best knowledge of the playbook which in head coach Brian Kelly's mind gave him the leg up last season. Rees also has the most experience with 16 starts under his belt.

But let me be perfectly clear on one thing: if Rees starts next season the Fighting Irish are in serious trouble. I like Rees but his limitations are obvious: he doesn't have a strong arm and he folds quicker than origami under pressure because he is extremely slow footed. He also had 14 interceptions, tons of lost fumbles, and got sacked not because the offensive line brokedown but because he has the escapability of a blind snail. So honestly if Rees starts vs Navy in Ireland you should be very afraid if you are a Notre Dame fan because it's going to be a very long and tedious season.

Which brings us to the other 3 guys vying for the starting position. Let's start off with Andrew Hendrix. Hendrix will be a junior academically and has a much stronger arm than Rees. He also can tuck the ball and run and in his limited playing time nearly racked up 200 yards on the ground including a 78 yard scamper vs Air Force. Hendrix threw only 37 passes last season but from what I saw he definitely had better zip and threw a much tighter spiral with a quicker release than Rees. The only problem was like Rees he is a turnover machine and it never seemed like he was in control of the offense. If Hendrix is starting in 2012 I would also be very afraid of the consequences.

Which leads us to the two guys who have yet to take a snap for Notre Dame: redshirt freshman Everett Golson and true freshman Gunner Kiel.

First of all let's talk about Kiel. Kiel is the nephew of Blair Kiel who was a star QB back in the early 80's at ND. Gunner is also the #1 prep quarterback from last season and the most highly recruited since Jimmy Clausen arrived in a limo 5 years ago. Gunner has great mechanics and has the body to start right away. What he doesn't have is the experience or the respect from the other players to be given full confidence as a starter from coach Kelly. No true freshman should be expected to start in major collegiate football and the best thing for Kiel and the program is to be on the red hat brigade on the sidelines and learn by watching.

So that leaves us with who I think is the best option: Golson. Golson enrolled early at Notre Dame last season and while he didn't see any gametime during his freshman season he did earn Scout team MVP. If you have had the chance to watch Golson in high school down in South Carolina the first person I thought of when seeing him make spectacular throws and eluding the defense while playing some really good competition in the Palmetto State was former Heisman Trophy winner Charlie Ward of FSU. Just like Ward Golson isn't a big guy (generously listed at 6 foot 185 but more like 5'10 175) but he ran a spread offense in high school that used his natural abilities of quick release, strong arm, accuracy of throws and the ability to tuck and run to the best of his abilities. He won multiple state championships in football and also won them in basketball as the starting point guard. Can you see the similarities with Ward who also won in the NBA? The only thing that separated Golson from being a 5 star can't miss prospect coming out of high school was a couple of inches in height. In college it won't matter.

From what I have been hearing from current players on the roster and some who have gone on is that Golson is THE MAN. I've also heard that Coach Kelly knows this and the reason why the QB position is still wide open (according to what Kelly gives the media) is because he doesn't want anybody to transfer going into the fall. This is obviously a smart move since injuries do happen. But make no mistake Golson is the best QB for Notre Dame right now. I've heard he is perfectly suited for Kelly's spread attack offense and despite having some struggles picking it up last season during a difficult transition year being a freshman his knowledge and more importantly his confidence have risen exponentially. Golson keeps his head on a swivel and also downfield at all times even when pressured. You would think with his athletic ability he would be looking to run first when given the chance but Golson keeps his eyes towards his X, Y, and Z targets and delivers a great ball for his receivers to make plays in the open field.

2012 will hopefully be the year of the Mt. Everett. In order for Notre Dame to get back to reaching the pinnacle of the college football landscape they are going to need Golson to be the leader and show them the way. And much like Charlie Ward with what he did while at FSU I think Golson will be the guy come game time in Dublin.

Go Irish!

Jason Heyward Made a Nice Catch has this spectacular .gif of Atlanta Braves right fielder Jason Heyward robbing the Yankees Raul Ibanez of a home run. This is definitely one of the better catches I have seen in a while and for a guy with the stature of Heyward (listed 6'5 and 240 lbs) shows how nimble of an athlete he is.

Sometimes it's hard to remember how young Heyward really is and at the age of 22 he still has a lot of baseball in him. Yes last year he struggled mightily in his sophomore season because he continued to try to pull the ball just like the end of his rookie season.

Heyward has obvious holes in his swing and when he is off he rolls his hands and hits grounders to the right side. Chipper Jones has been working on Heyward's swing path and his ability to drive the ball up the middle and to the opposite field since last year. With Heyward's god given ability there is no physical reason why he shouldn't be a Major League superstar barring injuries. But the key for Heyward this season and moving forward is to listen to guys like Chipper and follow the ball to the bat and try not to yank everything to the right side of the field. Heyward has an excellent eye so it's really just a mental part of the game he needs to get over. Can he do it? Sure. Will he do it? The 2012 season will be a good barometer.

There is little doubt the Braves need Heyward to be a superstar in order to contend for a playoff spot in a division that got much harder this offseason with the Nationals and Marlins both making significant upgrades in personnel. If Heyward can make adjustments like rookie Freddie Freeman did last season then I can see him putting up good numbers (.360 OBA, .800 plus OPS, drive in 100 plus) in a spot in the lineup with plenty of protections with guys like Dan Uggla, Brian McCann, Freeman, Chipper, and Martin Prado hitting around the big guy. Heyward has to step up and be the superstar everyone projected him to be when he took Carlos Zambrano's fastball on Opening Day and sent it express shipping to the Varsity.

The good news for Braves fans is Heyward is making adjustments this spring. Despite a slow start yesterday he hit a clutch, game tying 2-run bomb in the ninth. It was Heyward's 3rd homer of the spring and helped push his average over the infamous Mendoza line to .209. He still has a ways to go but as I mentioned before he is still young and it's way too early to give up on him like Jeff Francoeur. Hopefully his career progresses like the Chippers, McCanns, and now Freemans of Braves farmhands so Heyward can become the face of the franchise again.

Basically no more excuses for Heyward. It's time to perform in his 3rd big league season or it's going to be another long season for the Bravos.