Friday, April 29, 2005

Kansas City Chiefs Give Jason White a Call

Jason White has three chances. Three chances to prove that he deserved the 2003 Heisman trophy, three chances to prove that the blame for two consecutive B.C.S. championship game losses should not totally be put on his shoulders. Jason White has three chances to prove that 7,051 passing yards, and 75 touchdowns to just 19 interceptions over his last two seasons of college football were no fluke.

The Kansas City Chiefs have given Jason White these three opportunities, by inviting him to participate in their mini-camp this weekend. During the next three days Jason White will try to earn a roster spot with the Chiefs. Basically he has three practices to prove that he deserves to be in the NFL.

White went un-drafted in last weekend’s NFL draft and un-signed in this week’s free agent signings. The former Sooner Quarterback pondered other possible career opportunities earlier this week, including coaching, when his phone did not ring from NFL teams. Stating that he didn’t want to be a publicity stunt or get a sympathy opportunity, he implied that he might be done with playing football. But, that was before the Chiefs called. Now Jason White is in Kansas City trying to prove his worth.

Why should a Heisman winner have to prove his worth? Chiefs Coach Dick Vermeil was quoted earlier in the week as saying that, “the NFL didn’t evaluate him as talented enough to play at this level.” However Chiefs owner Carl Peterson had a different view of Jason White, “I’m not sure he can’t play in this league. He’s an extraordinary young man. You can’t count him out. He’s as tough minded as anybody and he had some great stats.”

The NFL shied away from White because of reconstructive surgery to both knees, but over the last two seasons his knees have proven to be more than healthy, White even scrambled for a first down every now and then. But some NFL teams feel like your quarterback has to be mobile to be successful. Has anyone ever heard of Dan Marino? This guy looked like his legs were literally going to fall off when he tried to run, and I emphasize tried, yet he wrote the NFL passing book. How about Peyton Manning? He’s not the most nimble of athletes, but he is re-writing the NFL passing book. An NFL quarter back should be judged by his arm and his head not his legs.

Last season Alex Smith the number one pick in the draft passed for 2,952 yards 32 touchdowns and 4 interceptions playing in the Mountain West Conference. Compare that to White’s 3,205 yards 35 touchdowns and 9 interceptions last season, playing in the Big 12 Conference, and White has proven that he is capable of putting up the numbers. Also, keep in mind that with a Heisman runner-up at tail back, Adrian Peterson, the Sooners scaled back their passing attack last season.

Critics will tell you that the system has made White a success and a talented receiving corps put up the numbers for him. Well, no-kidding! Name a championship football team that has not had a good system. All great teams have a great system, but they all also need a great triggerman as well. I would think that USC is proud of their system, but no one is taking any credit away from their Heisman hero. Tom Brady has been the beneficiary of a great system in New England and he is going to be one of the greatest quarterbacks to play the game.

When it comes to talented receivers, no doubt the Sooners have them. OU had three receivers taken on the first day of the NFL draft last weekend, but what comes first the great receiver or the great quarter back? Who would Joe Montana be without Jerry Rice, or Dan Marino without Mark Clayton? Who is Peyton Manning without Marvin Harrison? It’s like the chicken and the egg; you can’t have one without the other.

All Jason White wanted was a chance to prove that he can still play football. The Kansas City Chiefs are going to give him three of them.

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Thursday, April 28, 2005

NBA Play-Off Update

Every NBA play-off series has played two games and there have been a few surprises and a few, “told you so.” Let’s compare what My Opinion on sports predicted with what has actually happened so far.

PREDICTION: The Miami Heat will beat the New Jersey Nets.
REALITY: The Heat have a 2-0 lead on the Nets and very well could extend it to 3-0 tonight, New Jersey has been totally out manned in this series. Look for the Nets to give their best performance of the post season tonight as the series moves to moves to New Jersey.
STATUS OF PREDICTION: Looks pretty safe, series could end on Sunday with a Miami sweep

PREDICTION: The Detroit Pistons will beat the Philadelphia 76ers.
REALITY: The Pistons have really taken it to the 76ers in the first two games of the series, winning by an average of 18 points. The 76ers are up against the ropes and the Pistons are coming with the knock-out punch.
STATUS OF PREDICTION: Looks pretty safe with another possibility of a sweep.

PREDICTION: The Indiana Pacers would upset the Boston Celtics.
REALITY: After getting spanked by Boston in the first game of the series, the Pacers came back to take the second game and steal home court advantage. Injuries are still a major concern for the Pacers as they go into game three tonight.
STATUS OF PREDICTION: Still up in the air. With the series tied at one game each tonight’s game is huge.

PREDICTION: The Washington Wizards will beat the Chicago Bulls.
REALITY: Chicago’s depth has been a huge advantage in this series. The Bulls are out to a 2-0 lead and it doesn’t seem like they are going to lose momentum. Washington has got to win the next to games at home to have any hope of a comeback.
STATUS OF PREDICTION: Could go down in flames with a possible Chicago sweep.

PREDICTION: The Phoenix Suns will beat the Memphis Grizzlies.
REALITY: We actually predicted a sweep here and despite strong performances in the first two games the Grizzlies trail the Suns 2-0.
STATUS OF PREDICTION: Solid. This is just a mismatch, the Grizzlies are a good team but they don’t have the talent to keep up with the Suns.

PREDICTION: The San Antonio Spurs would beat the Denver Nuggets.
REALITY: Denver upset San Antonio in the first game but could not keep their intensity in the second game last night and the Spurs proved who the superior team is in a 104-76 rout.
STATUS OF PREDICTION: Solid. The Spurs proved their superiority last night and could wrap up the series in five games.

PREDICTION: The Seattle Sonics will beat the Sacramento Kings.
REALITY: The Sonics own a 2-0 lead in this series and have out hustled and out played the struggling Kings. I don’t expect a sweep here with the series moving to Sacramento, but I don’t see it going seven games either.
STATUS OF PREDICTION: Looks pretty safe even though the Kings are bound to win at least one game on their home floor.

PREDICTION: The Dallas Mavericks will beat the Houston Rockets.
REALITY: Houston owns two 12 point victories over Dallas and the Mavericks are struggling to make baskets.
STATUS OF PREDICTION: Could go down in flames. With the series moving to Houston it could be over Saturday. Tonight’s game is Dallas’ chance to save their season.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Celler Dwellers - Who is the Worst Team in Baseball?

Last week we made mentioned of the Yankees being only one game ahead of the worst record in the American League. Since then New York has gone 4-3 capped by A-Rod’s three home run 10 RBI performance last night. The Yankees are still below .500 but they have separated themselves from any talk of being a team with the worst record in baseball, mostly because Tampa Bay has gone 4-6 and Kansas City is 1-9 over their last 10 games.

With that said I got to thinking about which team is the worst in the Majors. As of today there are four teams who stand alone in last place of their respective divisions, which puts them in position to be MLB’s worst team. The candidates are Colorado, Kansas City, Philadelphia, and Tampa Bay. They are all bad teams but only one of them can be the worst in major league baseball.

Philadelphia has the best record of these four teams at 9-12 and they are only three and a half games back of first place Florida Marlins. If you look at the division, Washington and the New York Mets are only two games ahead of Philly. The Washington Nationals play in a new stadium in a new city but they are still the same Expos. You know they are destined for a slide and Philly will pass them in the standings. The Mets are a different story, they have gone 5-5 over their last ten games and they could teeter either way. Bottom line the NL East is up for grabs and the Phillies could finish anywhere from first to fifth, which disqualifies them from being MLB’s worst.

The Tampa Bay Devil Rays are 8-12 and just like the Phillies they play in a division that is in a tight race right now. Tampa Bay is only five and a half games back but with division powers Boston and New York as well as the resurgent Orioles, the Devil Rays don’t stand a chance to finish any higher than third which would still be enough to disqualify them as MLB’s worst.

The Colorado Rockies play in a wide open division. Hitters love the altitude of Coors Field, but the problem is the Rockies have no hitters. The team leaders for home runs are Clint Barmes and Preston Wilson with four each, as opposed to Arizona and LA whose team leaders have 6 homers each. The Rockies are 5-5 over their last ten games which is a better record than division contenders Arizona and San Francisco, but the Rockies are a legitimate cellar dweller. The bottom line here is the Dodgers will win this division and the Rockies don’t have the fire power to keep up with Arizona or San Francisco. The question for the Rockies is can they get out of last place? We don’t think so. The Colorado Rockies are a legitimate contender for MLB’s worst.

The Kansas City Royals are perennial AL East cellar dwellers. The Royals are 1-9 over the last ten games, they are ten and a half games back, and they boast an MLB worst record at 5-15. They play in the same division as MLB’s hottest team, the Chicago White Sox, and don’t really stand a chance to climb out of last place. Like the Rockies the Royals have no hitting but they also have serious questions when it comes to their pitching. The Royals cry out, “Potential” but look for them to begin dealing out the guys who have any of it before the trade deadline. Bottom line, Kansas City will play a weekend series with Colorado at Coors field, June 24-26, but you don’t have to wait until then to settle the issue. The Kansas City Royals are the worst team in Major League Baseball.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Still Plenty of NFL Talent Left

The NFL draft concluded Sunday with the defending Super Bowl champions, New England, selecting William Penn tight end as Mr. Irrelevant. However, since Sunday night NFL execs have remained extremely busy evaluating and signing undrafted free agents. Here is a list of some of the top undrafted free agents, in no particular order, according to

Kay Jay Harris, Running Back, West Virginia - Harris is a physical running back with great vision. He is a big, fast runner who has worked to become a more durable ball carrier and shows plenty of big-play potential, evident by his performance vs. East Carolina in 2004.

Reggie Harrell, Wide Receiver, Texas Christian University - Harrell was a two-sport standout for the Horned Frogs. He excelled on both the football and track fields. He spent his first two seasons on the sidelines as a redshirt and with a knee injury before getting his chance to play for TCU.

The first 1,000-yard receiver in school history, he finished his career with 103 receptions for 1,812 yards and six touchdowns. His 103 catches ranks No. 9 on the school's all-time record list, while his 1,812 receiving yards ranks No. 6. He played in 34 games and made 24 career starts.

Jason White, Quarterback, Oklahoma - The sixth-year collegian made a remarkable comeback from reconstructive surgery on both knees in successive years earlier in his career to become one of the most decorated athletes in the history of Sooners football … His mantelpiece is adorned with the Heisman Trophy, Maxwell Award, Davey O'Brien Award and the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, in addition to receiving All-American, All-Big 12 Conference and Academic All-Big 12 honors … He was the recipient of the Jim Thorpe Courage Award and earned College Player of the Year accolades from The Sporting News, Sports Illustrated and the Associated Press … In his final two years at the helm at Oklahoma, he threw 75 touchdowns and only 19 interceptions … The two-time Daily Oklahoman, Coaches/McDonalds and Tulsa World All-State selection was also honored as District 3A-1 Player of the Year as a senior at Tuttle (Okla.) High School, where he completed 146 of 231 (63 Percent) for 2,156 yards and 26 touchdowns (fourth highest in state) during his final season and also was a standout safety and kick returner … Saw limited action in two games as a true freshman in 1999 at Oklahoma before ankle and back injuries would force him to take a redshirt season … Saw brief action in another two games in 2000 and appeared in seven contests, starting two, in 2001 before tearing his left knee anterior cruciate ligament vs. Nebraska and was lost for the season … Finished with 681 yards, five touchdowns and three interceptions while completing 73 of 113 passes (64.6 percent) that year … ACL problems would again force him to the sidelines in 2002, as he injured his right knee in the Alabama clash, finishing the year completing 20 of 34 attempts (58.8 percent) for 181 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions … An intense rehabilitation would see White return to action in 2003, but he lost most of his speed and developed into a pocket passer … Went on to gain 3,846 yards on 278 of 451 passes (61.6 percent) with 40 touchdowns to shatter school season records … Also had only 10 interceptions while earning consensus All-American honors and winning the Heisman Trophy that year … Was granted a sixth year of eligibility and decided to return to the Sooners in 2004 rather than test his wares in the NFL … Captured the Maxwell, Davey O'Brien and Johnny Unitas Golden Arm awards and was a finalist for the Heisman … Hit on 255 of 390 passes (65.4 percent) for 3,205 yards, 32 touchdowns and only nine interceptions as a senior … His 7,922 yards and 81 touchdown passes set school career records, topping the previous marks of 7,456 yards and 53 touchdown passes by Josh Heupel (1999-2000) … Completed 622 of 990 passes (62.8 percent) during his Oklahoma career, marks that were surpassed only by Heupel (654 of 1,025) in school annals … .His 7,961 yards in total offense surpassed Heupel's previous school all-time record of 7,522 … A model of consistency and a renowned scoring machine, White threw at least four touchdowns in 10 of 40 games he played in for the Sooners … Joined Heupel (63.8 percent) as the only quarterbacks in school annals to complete more than 60 percent of their passes in a career (62.8 percent).

Jon Beutjer, Quarterback, Illinois - Hard-luck, but talented player who has battled a rash of injuries throughout his career. Began his college life at the University of Iowa, transferring to Illinois in 2001. Was granted a sixth year of eligibility by the NCAA in order to compete in 2004. Has not produced at the level you would expect from a player of his athletic skills, but has drawn comparisons to Tennessee's Drew Bennett, a former collegiate quarterback who made a successful move to wide receiver at the pro level. His quickness and leaping ability could see Beutjer follow Bennett's path to the National Football League.

In 26 games with the Illini over the last three seasons, Beutjer completed 462 of 772 passes (59.8 percent) for 5,190 yards, 39 touchdowns and 24 interceptions. He scored twice on 82 carries for minus-32 yards. Third on the Illinois career touchdown passes list with 39 and ranks No. 6 all-time at Illinois with 5,190 career passing yards, 5,158 career total offense yardage and 462 career completions. Beutjer had four career games with four touchdown passes.

Decori Birmingham, Running Back, Arkansas - One of the top all-around performers in the Southeastern Conference, Birmingham was once again one of the Hogs' primary offensive weapons in 2004. With injuries sidelining the Razorbacks' top two tailbacks, he made the switch to tailback midway through the 2003 season. As a senior, he performed in the backfield and as a wide receiver. Birmingham also spent significant time as a punt returner and as Arkansas' kickoff return man in his career.

Birmingham was an all-conference, All-Northeast Texas and all-state selection as a junior at Atlanta (Texas) High School. He was ranked the No. 16 player overall in the nation by David Garvin's Longhorn Link. Birmingham helped his team to the district crown while rushing for 2,000 yards as a junior. He rushed for 1,063 yards and 13 touchdowns on 125 carries in only five games as a senior, but was named second-team all-district despite missing four games with an injury.

Birmingham had strong family ties to Arkansas when it came time to decide which university to attend. He is the cousin of former Arkansas defensive end Randy Garner and tight end Jason Peters. Birmingham performed in every game as a flanker and tailback as a true freshman in 2001. He rushed 24 times for 87 yards (3.6 avg.) and a touchdown, adding 47 yards on six catches (7.8 avg.). Birmingham also gained 263 yards on 12 kickoff returns (21.9 avg.).

Birmingham started four games at flanker in 2002. He hauled in 17 passes for 184 yards (10.8 avg.) and three touchdowns while also gaining 59 yards on 10 carries. He totaled 638 yards on 28 kickoff returns (22.8 avg.) and 342 yards on 28 punt returns (12.2 avg.). He spent the first six games at flanker in 2003 before injuries to the running unit saw him shift to tailback. Birmingham rushed 88 times for a career-high 549 yards (6.2 avg.) and three touchdowns. He made 17 catches for 186 yards (10.9 avg.) and a pair of scores. He also came up with 89 yards on seven punt returns and 203 yards on 11 kickoff returns (18.5 avg.).

In 2004, Birmingham would start five games at flanker and three contests at tailback. He snared 17 passes for 175 yards (10.3 avg.) and a score while collecting 456 yards and three touchdowns on 111 carries (4.1 avg.). He would also return 10 kickoffs for 217 yards and 17 punts for 115 yards (6.8 avg.). In 49 games with the Razorbacks, Birmingham accounted for 1,151 yards and seven touchdowns on 233 rushing attempts. He caught 57 passes for 592 yards (10.4 avg.) and six scores.

Birmingham set a school career record with 1,321 yards on 61 kickoff returns (21.7 avg.), topping the old mark of 1,209 yards by Derek Holloway (1979-82). He also had 52 punt returns for 546 yards (10.5 avg.) and recorded 13 tackles (3 solos) on special teams. His 3,610 all-purpose yards rank fifth in school history. Only Cedric Cobbs (3,657, 1999-2003), Ben Cowins (3,750, 1975-78), Dickey Morton (4,070, 1971-73) and Gary Anderson (4,535, 1979-82) gained more all-purpose yards in Arkansas annals.

Let us know if you disagree or if there are any players we left out. Post your comments.

Make sure to check out the chatter box to see what people are talking about.

Monday, April 25, 2005

Last Weeks Poll Results

QUESTION: Who will win the AL east?
Boston 40%
Baltimore 24%
New York 21%
Tampa Bay 14%
Toronto 0%

Total of 42 voters. Thanks for your opinion, make sure to check out this weeks poll.

Winners & Losers in the NFL Draft

It was the longest first round in NFL draft history and it made for a draft that was definitely filled with lots of drama. Let's take a look at the winners and losers of the Weekend.

Ohio State Running Back Maurice Clarett - Many people thought he would be a late second day pick instead he was the last pick taken in the third round, by the Denver Broncos, on the first day. Clarett definitely has a lot to prove after being out of football for a few seasons and having a nack for showing up out of shape and over weight. The Broncos are the perfect fit for Clarett because of their history of turning average backs into superstars.

Dallas Cowboys - The Cowboys could possibly have had the best draft of the thirty two teams involved. Bill Parcells got exactly what he needed in the draft, defense and more defense. The 2005 draft class is full of guys who will be NFL All-Pros led by defensive end Marcus Spears.

Miami Dolphins - The Ricky Williams era is officially over and now the Ronnie Brown era has begun. Look for Brown to get a ton of carries as he becomes the feature back that the Dolphins desperately needed. Miami also boosted their defensive unit by picking up defensive end Matt Roth and linebacker Channing Crowder.

University of Oklahoma - The Sooners didn't break the NFL draft record but they did have more players drafted than any other school. The Big Twelve Conference sent 33 players to the NFL, 11 of them were from Oklahoma. Florida State was second with 9 and Georgia and Wisconsin each had 7 players drafted.

Green Bay Packers - Sure they got Cal. Q.B. Aaron Rodgers but who did they get that will make an immediate impact for them next season?

Kansas State Running Back Darren Sproles - After leading the Wildcats to the Big 12 Championship in 2003 the speedy running back was touted as a Heisman contender at the beginning of the 2004 college football season. Sprawls draft stock dropped as did the Wildcats season as they failed to make a bowl appearance. Sproles slipped to a second day pick going to San Diego in the fourth round where he will compete to back up LaDainian Tomlinson.

New York Jets - The Jets could have possibly had the worst draft of the thirty two teams. Not having a first round pick, they selected a kicker with their first pick of the second round. Granted that poor kicking did cost them in the play-offs last season. However, with kickers being a dime a dozen you don't spend a second round pick on one, much less, your first overall pick in the draft.

Oklahoma Quarterback Jason White - White becomes only the fourth heisman trophy winner to not be drafted and the first since Charlie Ward in 1993. The 2003 heisman trophy winner was slated to be a sixth or seventh round pick, but injuries and poor performances in back to back BCS championship games caused NFL teams to shy away from picking him.

What do you think? Post your comments by clicking on the comment icon.

Sunday, April 24, 2005

CHATTER BOX for the week of April 25

About My Opinion on Sports

Welcome to my opinion on sports. This is a blog-spot devoted to sports opinions. Everyday (Mon-Fri) I will post an opinion about something in the world of sports with the desire to know what your thoughts are. You can agree or disagree, but we want to know your opinion. If you like this site tell your friends about it and get some good banter going back and forth on your various opinions. If you don't like this site, then wait until you do, and then tell your friends and get the banter going. The only rules are that you keep it clean and you keep it about sports.

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Friday, April 22, 2005


This weekend the NFL will have it’s draft, the NBA will begin the play-offs, and Houston and St. Louis begin a weekend series in Baseball, but the NHL will not play hockey. Because owners and players cannot get along much less agree on anything the owners have locked out the players. The question is, does anyone really care.

The NHL failed to look at the lost seasons and lost fan base that resulted from the NBA and MLB work stoppages and now they might be in a position where they won’t be able to recover. Today’s sports fan has moved on, he’s had to. Because out outrageous salaries and out of control egos sports fan has had to learn how to cope without his favorite team or player participating in his favorite pastime.

With the amazing success of the NCAA tournament, the increased popularity of the NFL draft, the NBA play-offs, and just for kicks MLB, who has time to worry about a hockey work stoppage. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention college football spring practice and scrimmages. Do you think the sixty-plus thousand fans who came to Nebraska’s spring game were sitting in the stands thinking, “man, I sure wish I could watch some hockey.” Nope, Huskerfan is worried about who is going to play quarterback for his team and why the defense can’t stop anyone.

The NHL has only themselves to blame. They could have learned from the NBA and MLB. They could have listened to what people were saying, but instead they ignored the fans and their advisers and shut down the season. Now there is talk about what they are going to do if the situation isn’t resolved by next season. The hope now becomes that the three other major sports will now look to Hockey’s example of what not to do. Hopefully the next time the words, “’Lock-out or strike” are mentioned someone will say, “NO WAY THAT’S WHAT KILLED HOCKEY!“ I’m sure at some point the NHL will get all it’s problems worked out, I just wonder if anyone will care enough to pay attention.

Thursday, April 21, 2005

Searching for Answers in the NBA Play-Offs?

The question has been answered as to who will be in the NBA play-offs, now we can focus on the questions about the play-offs. Last night Jason Kidd led the Nets to a 102-93 victory over Boston securing the final play-off spot. Now the stage has finally been set for the NBA’s second season and there are plenty of questions to be answered before the finals in June.

Which team is the long shot?
In the east you would think it would be New Jersey. They had to fight off Cleveland for the final spot in the play-offs and waited until the last game of the season to do so. However, there is too much talent and way too many veterans who have post season experience to be considered a long shot. So, my long shot pick from the east is Philly. The 76ers finished the season winning eight of their last ten games and as a reward they get to face the defending world champions in the first found. Sorry Philly fans. Enjoy it while it lasts because you won’t go five games.
The west is a different story. You could go either way with Memphis or Denver. Both make a strong case to be the long shot and the reality is that neither has much of a chance to make it out of the first round, but I’m going to pick the Grizzlies as the west long-shot because I can see the Nuggets putting up more of a fight against the Spurs and I see the Suns sweeping the Grizzlies.

Can the NBA have a Cinderella?
Basketball is basketball, and wherever they play on the hardwood you can find a Cinderella. In can be a team or a player who plays well beyond their ability, this year I have found the perfect team. The Chicago Bulls are finally moving beyond the Jordan era and returning to the play-offs for the first time since the 97-98 season when MJ led them to their sixth World Championship. Does anyone remember that the bulls started the season 0-9? That is why we crown the Bulls our 2005 play-off Cinderella.

Who will pull off a first round upset?
There are a few possibilities here. The Sonics could beat the Kings or the Wizards could take the Bulls. However, my pick for first round upset is the Pacers over the Celtics. This could be Reggie Miller’s last shot at winning the championship and the Pacer’s have been playing with a huge chip on their shoulder since the November incident in Detroit. I think that is enough to get them past the Celtics and into the second round.

What is the play-off match up everyone wants to see?
Pacers – Pistons, nuff said.

Who makes it past the first round?
OK, here we go.
In the east; the Heat will beat the Nets, the Pistons down the 76ers, the Pacers will upset the Celtics, and the Wizards move past Chicago in game five.
In the west; the Suns will sweep the Grizzlies, the Spurs will down the Nuggets, the Sonics will surprise the Kings, and Dallas will win the battle over Texas by knocking off Houston.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Sooners Set to Break NFL Draft Record

Bob Stoops has coached six seasons at the University of Oklahoma and is already a legend. In such a short time his Sooners have played in four Big Twelve Championship games, winning three, and three BCS Championship games winning one. He has coached one Heisman winner with two runner-ups and several other prestigious award winners. However, this weekend Stoops is getting ready to do something he has never done, stock the NFL draft.
With as many as fourteen players who could go in the draft on Saturday and Sunday the Sooners could set a new record for the number of players selected from the same university during a seven round draft.
After falling into obscurity in the 90’s, Stoops has once again turned the Sooners into a national power. They are the Crown Jewel of the Big Twelve and the pride of the state of Oklahoma. Even after falling short in back to back BCS title games, current and former players are treated like god’s as they make their autograph tours of the Sooner state.
NFL execs should have their thank you cards ready to send to Bob Stoops for the talent he is about to send their way. Guys who are proven winners, guys like 2003 Heisman Trophy winner Jason White who recovered from two knee surgeries to lead the Sooners to a 24-3 record in his two full seasons as quarterback. Guys like Jammal Brown who takes pride in punishing opponents with the bone crunching blocks he delivers from the offensive line. And guys like Mark Clayton who wrote the record book for receiving at OU.
This years draft is loaded with talent and many teams are looking to fill holes in their rosters. No doubt the 2005 draft class from OU will be big, I just hope they can impact the NFL the same way they did the college football world.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Yankees – Overpaid or Just Selfish?

You name it they’ve got it. Cy young awards, golden gloves, money and good looks. Of course I’m talking about the New York Yankees. They are either the team you love of the team you love to hate. They pride themselves in looking good both on and off the field. They will proudly boast their 27 World Series Championships and they make no apologies about pursuing number 28. George Steinbrenner will gladly pay a luxury tax along with outrageous salaries in order to get the men he feels will give him the edge over the rest of the MLB world. These men in turn are expected to be clean shaven and have neatly cropped hair. Oh yeah, and go out and dominate on the baseball diamond.
However, something seems to be missing from the 2005 version of the Bronx Bombers. Something that money can’t buy something that the “Boss” can’t force them to have. That something is team chemistry. Is it possible with all the big names and big salaries there are also too many big egos? Sure they want to win, but why. There is a huge difference between wanting to win for your-self and wanting to win for the team. The danger with paying those big time salaries is that the players feel like they have to prove their worth. How do they do that? By winning of course, but these Yankees are trying to win for the wrong reasons. It’s not for the city of New York or for Yankee pride they are trying to win for the name on the back of their jersey instead of the name on the front. That eliminates team chemistry!
It’s for this reason that the Yankees find themselves currently in fourth place in the AL East and just one game ahead of the lowly Devil Rays and Royals for the worst record in the American League. Can they right the ship? Absolutely! Will they? Who knows, it’s going to take more than Mr. Steinbrenner expressing his disappointment in them, after all they live in New York, I’m sure they have taken worse verbal abuse from the fans than what the Boss is dishing out. It will also take more than a great manager whom they have in Joe Torre. I do believe he is one of the classiest guys in all of Major League Baseball. So, what will it take to turn these Yankees into World Series champs? A concept they may have not realized since the last city they were All-Stars for. Teamwork!