1) As mentioned in yesterday's post, I'll be back Sunday morning for some special Maryland hatred, and we'll do Hot Potato then. If you won't be around the internet, feel free to leave your guess below. The HP will be...Baby Dawk. Here are the current standings:
Dr. Kenneth Noisewater, whose real name is Jim, which I think is short for Jimson or Jimberly (his mother wanted a girl), was the only one to hit the nail on the head with Kelly's 5 points. I still have the lead, but it's oh-so-tenuous.
2) Good God, Seth Curry was in the movie Juwanna Mann! This comes via DukeHoopBlog and my friend Nick. Check it out, Seth Curry is the kid who looks exactly like Seth Curry:
I'm going to break this down further on Sunday, because I think it's a pretty flawless performance from the namesake. But I'm still digesting and I want to make sure to get this right.
3) Just quickly, Yao Ming is like a tragic figure. He's just had possibly career-ending surgery on his ankle, thus ending his American experiment. Even when he was healthy, I felt bad for him. He was reportedly lonely in America all the time, and even though fans professed to love him, it was the kind of love you give somebody whose personality you never consider. He was like a voiceless mascot that nobody bothered to understand. Just a big quiet Chinese dude on whom you could project whatever you wanted. And now he's done, which I consider a little sad.
BUT YOU KNOW WHAT'S NOT SAD?!
VOLUME THREE, WEEK ONE
The Friday Pick Six is an original SCSD! game where six people make six predictions for six weeks. Along with their picks, they're allowed and encouraged to submit a 'sound-off' on any topic, sports or otherwise. When it's all done, the winner earns great honor among the people, while the two losers are exiled in shame and the three middle finishers go to purgatory, with the chance rescue their good name up to three times. To learn more about the rules, and about the current contestants, read below:
-Volume Two champion and intros to the new class
THE HALL OF ANGELS: OLD CHAMPIONS
Here's how Volume Two looks:
The Last Chance Man (3rd attempt, win or bust): Spike
Purgatory Part 1: Swetha & Sabreena, Nick E.
Newcomers: Marc, Dylan & Patrick, Monty
Old Spike, with his grizzled face and his chewed-up cigar, is back for one last shot at glory. He couldn't get it done in either of his first two attempts, despite leading the Volume Two standings going into the last week. Swetha & Sabreena had a promising first showing that came up short, and Nick is back to try to gain some respect. They'll all have to deal with a wily bunch of newcomers, though, the likes of which we haven't seen in these parts.
Important Trophy Decision: Our Pick Six trophy, which you can see below, has officially been shipped from Tom to Mike. It has no name as of yet, but I've made a decision in that regard: after six champs have been crowned, we'll have a Pick Six of Champions with those winners. The trophy will be named after whichever genius emerges. Probably with the word 'Chief' in front. Here's Tom holding his prize:
Mah Boy Jimson, mentioned above for his Hot Potato heroics, is back with this week's docket. I took over question #4, but the rest is his. Take it, Slim Jim:
Let me just say that I am excited about wild card weekend so that I won't be forced to endure another Carolina Panther yawn-fest. I hope they use their #1 pick to choose a new defensive player though, because I really enjoy watching Jimmy Clauson flail around like a fool.
Oh, stop it silly!
1. Shane said I could ask about the national championship, so... Who will win the FCS Championship? Will it be the up and coming Eastern Washington Eagles or the always dangerous Delaware Blue Hens?
2. Ok, but seriously. Oregon or Auburn?
3. Lets turn to NCAA Basketball. Will the Uconn Huskies get Rick Barnes' Texas Longhorns started on their annual slide, or do you think Texas will stay ranked for a couple of more weeks before falling apart?
4. Give me Duke's margin of victory over Maryland. That's right, I'M ASSUMING DUKE WILL WIN. If you think they won't, you have to express your answer as a negative margin. Also, for a bonus point, predict which Maryland player I'll hate the most. This is a completely serious bonus. I promise not to be influenced by your guesses, and I will be evaluating as the game goes on until it's narrowed to one super hateable player. Now that Vazquez is gone, this one is wide open.
5. Now on to the wild cards! I assume you know that the Seahawks will lose (they've pretty much let me down my entire life). Will the Packers slow down Michael Vick and the Eagles?
6. Rex promised, "this one is personal" but was he talking about this or was he talking about this? Who will win this awesome showdown???
We'll start with the old schoolers, and work our way down to the new. Let's kick it off with the Dukie Duo.
1. Admittedly, our knowledge of FCS football is a little lacking, but we do have some respect for whoever makes these T-shirts for Delaware. BLUE HENS
2. There really isn’t a whole lot to dislike about either of these teams, so we are just going to pretend this game is a fight between Kyle Singler and Charles Barkley. And no matter how fat Chuck is, we’ll take Kyle every time. OREGON
3. We favor UConn because we love Simba Walker (and yes, we know his legal name is Kemba), and we hate Rick Barnes. Any coach who prioritizes getting his players to the NBA over winning in college doesn’t deserve to win this game. UCONN
4. FOURTEEN. And for part two: Jordan Williams? I actually really like him, but everyone else on the team is kind of an unknown.
5. The last time these two teams played, Vick tore it up in the second half and claimed that the Eagles would have won if he had played the whole game. But since then, he’s started throwing picks and Aaron Rodgers hasn’t. Besides, I have too much Pac-10 pride to go against Rodgers (even if DeSean Jackson suits up on the other side). GREEN BAY
6. Last year, I thought it was hilarious that the Jets were flustered by the fact that Peyton Manning called out their names on defense. Don’t expect that to change. The Colts have been a little off this season, but they really only lose in the wild card round when they play the Chargers. INDIANAPOLIS
So this week my pick six research is a little short. Why? Because I'm an athlete. I have important athletic functions to attend to. Such as the World Series of Beer Pong VI. That's right, I spent the first five days of 2011 in fabulous Las Vegas, competing against the very best the world of beer pong has to offer. I'm very proud to say that of 507 teams, my partner and I (as team Brain Trust) finished tied for 49th. Tremble before me, pick sixers, for I AM ONE OF THE GREATEST 100 BEER PONG PLAYERS ALIVE!
*note: that's the best picture I could find when googling "Greatness". Pretty disappointing.
In all seriousness, it was a really really fun event. Not to mention that it's a great way to do Vegas, as there's not a whole lot to do there during the day. The ceremonial first game was played between a Playboy playmate and a little person dressed as a leprechaun, and the final game was introduced by UFC announcer Bruce Buffer. So, you know, it was all classy-like. Special shout out to Deryck Weaver, a fellow member of the DC-Maryland Beer Pong circuit who reached the finals before falling to a very talented team Standing Ovation from St. Louis.
Oh right, the picks.
I feel that as a state, Delaware could use a win. Let's go with the BLUE HENS.
I don't see anyone stopping Cam Newton this year. AUBURN.
Hard to go against KenPom, which gives the Longhorns a 78% chance of victory. TEXAS.
In the past few years Maryland has really stunk it up in Cameron - 16 POINTS. Hey, Terrell Stoglin, show us your mean face!
I think that resting a banged up Michael Vick is really going to help the Iggles, and the Pack looked awful against the Bears. PHILLY.
I think the Jets' D is pretty overrated, and last time they played a good QB (Brady) something happened that I don't care to remember. Still though, have to pull for my J-E-T-S JETS JETS JETS!
Delaware, Oregon, UConn, 22, Sean Mosely Packers, Colts
Edgar Martinez. PUT HIM IN THE HALL.
Seriously, if a guy manages to put up a 300/400/500 slash line without garnering any steroid accusations, well, how can you not put him in the hall. You know how many guys have done that? 20. You know of those who are eligible out of those 20 how many are in the hall? All of em. But, people have their counter arguments. I will go through them now.
DH: Some people won't for Edgar Martinez because he was a Designated Hitter. My response to this is two-fold. First, It is generally assumed that DHing lowers a players rate stats. The fact that Edgar was as good as he is without playing in the field should be a mark on his behalf. Second, he was a better than adequate third baseman until he was struck with injuries. Which is to say that had there been no DH he would have been moved to first to play out his career. It simply wasn't worth the injury risk given the DH existed (and he shared time with Tino Martinez and John Olerud for much of his career. Which is to say that yes, he played at the DH spot, but he wasn't born a DH a la David Ortiz. The guy had a glove, he just also had bad knees and the opportunity to avoid a career ending injury by being slotted in at DH.
No Counting Stat Milestones: Edgar didn't get to 3000 hits. He didn't get to 400 home runs. But his case isn't based on longevity. It's based on efficiency. Edgar was a premier offensive threat who for 10 years did not waste an at-bat. If you look at Edgar's peak you will find a five year stretch where he threw up a 334/455/579 slash line. Over five years. That's some Albert Pujolsian hitting. Consistent excellence while active. That's what Edgar brought to the table.
Played in Seattle: People use this as a double edged sword. On the one hand, they suggest that Seattle is an inferior place to play baseball and therefore he had to put up better than Musialesque rate stats to earn a place in the hall. This is obviously idiotic (though the Kingdome was hitter friendly, it was no Coors, and Edgar's adjusted rate stats are almost as incredible as his unadjusted line).
On the other hand they say that he paled in comparison to his teammates and someone who was never the best player on his team should not go into the hall. He had three teammates who were first ballot material (Griffey, ARod, and Randy Johnson). Not being as good as players who are first ballot hall of famers does not mean that you are not potentially a hall of famer yourself. And the other thing is, Edgar was a better pure hitter than his hall of fame caliber teammates. In the way that Rod Carew was a better hitter than Jim Rice, Edgar's ability to make line drive contact and draw walks meant that for the bulk of their time together, Edgar was at least as if not more valuable at the plate than his hall of fame teammates. Now, ARod and Griffey were both great defenders and baserunners, but COME ON THEY WERE ARod and Griffey!
I will leave you with this quote: "Edgar Martinez was the greatest hitter I ever faced." --Mariano Rivera
Once I began reading the questions for the Pick Six I realized that dominating the season might be a little harder than I originally thought. I would have to do research and looks at statistics! Ugh! Usually I just tell my brain to make things up and roll with it. Surprisingly it worked well during college but I need to be serious about this Pick Six business (next week). Can anyone tell me what business casual is? I have to go to an orientation for grad school on Monday and they said to dress business casual. I dress like I'm still in middle school, so I'm very confused as to what to wear. Anyway, onto to the Pick Six!
1. I didn't even know there was an FCS championship until this Pick Six. Even after googling it I'm still not sure what it is. From what I can tell it's about giving slow white kids a chance to win a championship in football. How do I decide which white ones to go with? Delaware is pretty darn white, they were one of the first white places in North America. But, Washington borders Canada, and well Canada is the whitest place on earth. This is a difficult situation I found myself in. I'm going to have to go with the Delaware Blue Hens because I think the Eagles will be thinking about hockey and moose hunting too much to play serious football.
2. Going with Auburn here. Whenever an SEC team gets into the national championship game they win. Therefore Cam Newton will lead the tigers to victory. He may have money falling out of his jersey while he runs around on the field, but he's a good quarterback, so go Tigers!
3. My gut instinct is to go with UConn, but after their last few showings I'm not sure I have any confidence in them anymore. I feel after their streak of victories they got ranked way above where they should be. Texas, though, is always terrible. Rick Barnes somehow convinces good players to play for him but then he coaches like Paul Hewitt. My favorite memory of Texas is JJ Redick obliterating them a few years ago. As much as I dislike Texas I will go with them for victory. Jim Calhoun is a smug douchebag, so I can never root for UConn to win a game.
4. I think Duke will take the game by 8 and the next hated Maryland player is Jordan Williams. I've done no research into this answer, it's all instinct. My instinct will be right because it always is! In fact my instinct is telling me Kyrie Irving will return this game and lead Duke to victory! Good ole gut instinct, you never lead me wrong.
5. I've actually asked a few of my friends who they think will win this game. They are as uncertain about it as I am. Part of me wants Michael Vick and Desean Jackson to be "like pit bulls." Classy fellow, that Mr. Jackson. The other part of me wants Aaron Rodgers to dominate even though he has no running game or offensive line to back him up. I love Aaron Rodgers and his mutton chop facial hair, therefore I will have to go with the Packers!
6. Ugh the Jets, the most annoying team in football. "Hey everybody look at us talk about ourselves blah blah blah!" Although I do admire Rex Ryan and their wife for foot fetishes. I've had so many girlfriends (imaginary ones) that hate feet. They freak out when we're going to sleep and I put my feet on their feet. I'm sorry my blood circulation is so poor that my feet turn into ice cubes, but you don't need to kick me when I touch you with them. I suppose you're all very upset about the images I've put in your mind, and for that I apologize. Now you need to think about hot Rex Ryan and his wife fondling each others feet. With that late night cinemax session out of the way, I'll get to the game on hand. Peyton Manning is awesome, everyone knows that. He's even good in commercials. He is a remarkably successful person even though he obviously ran his face into hard and flat surfaces as a child. I must go with the Colts in this struggle!
1. Who will win the FCS Championship?
It's highly important that we talk about the National College Football Championship. While many BCS detractors may whine about the lack of a real champion in college football, I think that just shows their woeful sports ignorance. This year, there will be a clear and indisputable champion, and I'm pretty sure it's going to be the
Eastern Washington Eagles. In the last round, they beat Villanova, who had previously bested the FCS powerhouse Appalachian State. On the other hand, Delaware has played no-one of any significance, unless you think Georgia Southern is where the pigskin is pounded hard.
Now to be fair, if Oregon or Auburn weren't ending their season by playing a meaningless exhibition game and instead chose to participate in a proper single elimination tournament, they'd probably both do pretty well and might have had a chance to be playing in this game... but as we've learned from Pittsburgh's yearly media-fandom and high regular season ranking followed by their complete ineptitude in the
NCAA tournament - just because people think you're good does not actually make it so.
2. Ok, but seriously. Oregon or Auburn?
There will be no winner in this game, as it is only a sham. Both teams should be laughed at and mocked for being too pussy to play a real season-ending tournament. If I cared at all about the outcome, I'd pick Oregon over Auburn, if only because that's the closest thing to a humiliating outcome (hippies beating a 'storied' program) that can occur. But I don't, because it's all hogwash.
3. Uconn or Texas?
It makes my gizzard hurt to say this, but I'm pretty sure that UConn is going to win. In case you haven't been following along at home, UConn won an NCAA tournament that Duke clearly should have won, if only Brand and Magette hadn't decided to snort coke and get drunk at halftime to celebrate their upcoming billion-dollar NBA deals.
Although it was clearly our boys' fault for just flat out quitting while playing an inferior opponent, it's not possible to blame them, so instead I blame UConn. I hate them almost as much as I hate the Tar Heels (except that UNC is really more of a pitiful joke these days)
All of that being said, Calhoun does have this annoying tendency to coach teams that actually beat most of the teams they play, which means his teams keep being talked about - which I think is purely spite against me personally. If they lose this game, I will oddly take is as a personal affront as well.
4. Duke's margin of victory and who I'm going to hate.
You would think that you're going to hate Jordan Williams. But I think by the end of the game it's actually going to be Cliff Tucker... mostly for reasons involving the fact that no one should really be named Cliff.
Duke will clearly score 16 more points than Maryland.
5. Now on to the wild cards! Will the Packers slow down Michael Vick and the Eagles?
No. Not at all. The Packers aren't really even a football team this year. Their existence in the playoffs is almost as embarrassing as that of the Seahawks (although I have this hunch that the Seahawks are going to confuse everyone by beating New Orleans)
Hrm. A team that was assuring everyone that they could go undefeated before the season had even started vs. the worst Peyton Manning team since Peyton was in the second grade. It's a tough call. I can't believe the Colts are even suiting up, but Rex Ryan drives me crazy... ugh. Foot Fetish over aw-shucks I suppose.
This conversation is a mostly accurate transcription of a phone call that occurred on Wednesday.
CB: Hey dad, whats up?
D: ..... *Laughter*
CB: What are you doing? Whats so funny?
D: It's just this video. Forget it you wouldn't think it was funny.
CB: No, no, I love internet videos. Really, show me.
D: Okay, It's Antoine Dodson, the one where he's all like HIDE YO KIDS, HIDE YO WIFE HIDE YO...
CB: Yeah! DAD! I got it. I got it.
D: CAUSE THEY RAPIN EVERBODY OUT HURR.
CB: Okay, did you get that out of your system?
D: Yeah, we're good now. But wait, did you hear the remix they made? This is so funny.
CB: Yes dad, I saw it, along with 60 million other people... You know that was voted the video of the year right? Are you ready to do the pick six for the week??
D: Not so fast dude, what about Seth's Bowl Pick'em.
CB: Well we're in a tie for 4th but its not looking too good. Dad, its not Seth's game, its Shane's
D: Yea, about that. I was looking over Seth's comments and stuff and you know we did pretty good picking things.
CB: I know, just one game the other way and we might have....
D: MY POINT EXACTLY. Do you remember picking the games. We were close but there were three games we disagreed on
CB: Oh yeah, troy and iowa and somebody right?
D: And we went with your picks at your priority. Well I was looking at them...
CB: Why are you wasting your time with that, I put up the $15 for the pool, I'll be the one out the money....
D And if we stayed with MY picks - Troy and Iowa at MY priorities, we would have made 17 more points. Do you know where 17 more points would have us?
CB: I'm guessing I'll find out soon enough.
D: WE WOULD BE IN SECOND PLACE! WE WOULD BE COUNTING MY 150 ENCHILADAS!
CB: Thought we were going to split the money....
D: MY PICKS, MY ENCHILADAS! MY PICKS, MY PICKS!
This went on for 30 seconds or so until I finally agreed to let him, despite my objections, be the sole decision maker in this week's pick six.
Dad's commentary in (Parentheses)
1. EW beats Delaware (EW was picked to be in finals from start of playoffs)
2. Auburn over Oregon (Auburn has too much firepower to lose to a team from the northwest, even though I seriously love ducks)
3. UConn beats Texas (UConn makes this a statement game)
4. Duke wins by +12 (yada yada yada, duke is better)
5. Philly beats GB (Philly at home, Vick rested for this one)
6. Colts over Jets (Jets get de"feeted" HEY! Did you see the story about Rex Ryan? I know Seth's a Giants fan, but I think he's going to really like that joke I just made, make sure you make it bold or highlight it or something. Maybe make it a marquee. Why don't websites ever use marquees anymore? That was always so cool to watch the text scrolling across the screen. If only I could make a duck scroll across the screen, that would be seriously awesome.)
Enjoy your weekend, and I'll see you Sunday morning.