Thursday, September 29, 2005

Aggie Fun

This is not intended to make fun of the victims of hurricane Rita, but it was just too funny to pass up. Enjoy!

Last Minute Football Notes

Conference play begins tomorrow, so we are throwing out the Cream Puff of the Week and the Game No One Cares About, because in conference play everyone has a chance to win and there are no cream puffs.

Here is my rundown of the first week of action in Big 12 Conference play. Be sure to leave your thoughts about your team. Let me know where you think I’m wrong and where you agree with me.

Big Game
Iowa State @ Nebraska
– The Cyclones are 3-0 with an impressive win over Iowa and the Huskers are 3-0 with an impressive win over, well, no one. I guess you could say Wake Forest.

The winner of this game will be in good shape for winning the North and the loser will start out conference playing catch-up. Nebraska goes on the road for the next two games so I guess you could say that this is a must win for them.

Iowa State should have success moving the football but may struggle on the defensive side of the ball. On the other hand Nebraska’s strength is their defense while Bill Callahan’s West Coast offense is still a work in progress. Husker coaches need to find a way to speed up that progress. Callahan isn’t on the hot seat yet but if Nebraska drops this game at home he will hear some grumblings.

This should be an entertaining game. Look for the Cyclones to pull away late.

Prediction: ISU 24/Nebraska 14

Must Win
Kansas State @ Oklahoma
– This is a must win for both schools. The Sooners have backed themselves in a corner and their young talent has got to fight them out. At 1-2 if OU loses this game OU fans will do something they haven’t done in six years. Look forward to basketball in the month of October.

This will be a must win for the Wildcats as well if they want to prove they have elevated their game back to where it was in the 2003 season when they were Big 12 Champs. After struggling against Florida International and Marshall, before man handling North Texas, a win in Norman would go along way towards boosting team confidence.

I’m trying not to be a homer here, but I like the Sooners’ chances. They have had two weeks to prepare for the game and I like the line match-ups on both sides of the ball. Turnovers will be the key! The Sooners have got to quit turning over the ball. That is something that comes with maturity and I think we will begin to see signs of that on Saturday.

Prediction: OU 31/KSU 17

Possible Upset
Colorado @ Oklahoma State
– It’s hard to call it an upset when you are the favorite, but Colorado has a great chance to pick up a road victory here. After traveling to Miami last weekend, Stillwater should be a breeze. The Cowboys have won their first three games by an average score of 19-8 over Montana State, Florida Atlantic and Arkansas State. This will be a wake up call for the Cowboys as they take a big step up in the level of talent they will be playing.

OSU is one of those teams where defense is their strength. If Colorado keeps the Cowboys under 20 points they should be able to win. The Buffalos are definitely the more battle tested team here.

Prediction: Colorado 20/OSU 17

Other Big 12 Games

Texas @ Missouri – This should be the “Big Game” this week but the Dr. Jekel/Mr. Hyde personality of the Missouri football team won’t allow it. This could be a trap game for Texas because the Red River Shootout with Oklahoma is next week. I don’t think Texas is going to overlook the Tigers.

Vince Young vs. Brad Smith could be a classic match-up. In fact, there was a day when the sports world thought this match-up could have heisman implications. I don’t think Smith has the talent around him to keep up.

At home the Tigers could surprise you! In 2003 they took Oklahoma to the wire in Columbia. I don’t think this Missouri team is a good as the 2003 team.

Prediction: Texas 38/Mizzou 14

Finally, two more wake-up calls. Baylor and Kansas are undefeated heading into conference play and I think there is a better than average chance that both teams get abused on the road this weekend.

Baylor @ Texas A&M – The good news for the Bears is that A&M has struggled on defense and the Cheap Seats writes that Aggie defensive coordinator Carl Torbush is beginning to feel the heat. What better remedy for that than the Baylor Bears?

The bad news for Baylor is that the A&M offense is explosive. Look for A&M to score early and often on Saturday. Oh yeah, there is something called revenge in play here as well.

Prediction: A&M 45/Baylor 17

Kansas @ Texas Tech – I’m actually interested to see how Tech does in conference play. I think they could actually be a contender in the South if their defense has improved. They have looked solid against non-conference opponents, but come on Indiana State? If you think A&M’s offense is explosive wait until you see Mike Leach’s 2005 brain child.

Prediction: Tech 49/Kansas 21

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Buster's Best

Okay, this is getting embarrassing. Buster is already claiming victory for the season and has said that he wants to go camping for his reward. Thanks to whoever it was that suggested that idea.

Last Weeks Games
Game 1, Dallas Cowboys @ San Francisco 49ers – Buster picked the Cowboys and won. I took the 7 points Dallas was giving and lost. Blasted Cowboys!
Buster 1-0/Dad 0-1
Game 2, Cleveland Browns @ Indianapolis Colts – How did the Colts not explode on offense in this game? Buster picked the Colts and won. I took the 14 points the Colts were giving and lost. Buster 2-0/Dad 0-2
Game 3, Memphis @ Tulsa – Buster picked Tulsa and moves to 3-0. I took the 1 point that Tulsa was giving and won as well. Buster 3-0/Dad 1-2
Game 4, Iowa @ Ohio State – Buster went with Ohio State and is now one game away from a perfect weekend. I took the 7 points that Ohio State was giving and am now one game away from having a winning record. I’ve forgotten what that is like.
Buster 4-0/Dad 2-2
Game 5, Tennessee @ LSU – Buster picked the Volunteers and went to bed with them losing 21-0. Thanks to Les Miles (Oklahoma State fans do you miss him?) he woke up a perfect 5-0 for the weekend. I took the 6.5 points that Tennessee was getting and won as well. Buster 5-0/Dad 3-2

For the Season
Buster 13-7/Dad 9-11

This Week’s Games

Game One San Diego Chargers @ New England Patriots – Buster likes the Patriots to win and I like them to cover the 5.5 points even though san Diego seemed to get things rolling last week against the Giants.

Game Two Dallas Cowboys @ Oakland Raiders – Buster likes his Cowboys and I think I’m going to have to go the other way with this one. Dallas has struggled the past two weeks defending the pass and I think this week it will cost them the game. I’ll take the three points that the Raiders are getting.

Game Three Kansas State @ Oklahoma – Buster is sticking with the Sooners and I will as well (I’m kicking myself as I’m writing this). OU has had two weeks to prepare for the game and I think at home they will cover the 6.5 against the Wildcats.

Game Four Illinois @ Iowa – Buster likes the Hawkeyes and for some strange reason I do to. I think they will win the game but won’t cover the 17.5 point spread.

Game FiveMississippi @ Tennessee – Buster likes Tennessee who got things rolling Monday night and should have ended their quarterback controversy. I think they keep rolling and cover the 21 points against a bad Ole Miss team.

Flag Football Update – Buster’s team moved to 3-0 with an 18-6 win Saturday. Buster sealed the deal with a 35 yard touchdown run. Unfortunately a trampoline accident Tuesday night left Buster with 24 stitches and about three weeks of recovery. He will be on crutches for 7 – 10 days, so football is on hold for right now.

Blog Poll Roundtable

I have the privilege of voting in the blog poll. It’s a Top 25 college football poll voted on by about 48 sports bloggers. We have weekly discussions about the college football season and I thought I would share this one with you, if you would share your opinions. We haven’t done this in a while so we will give it a shot. Give us your thoughts

1. We are now 1/3 of the way through the season and things are starting to shake out. With that in mind, who are your picks to win each of the BCS conferences, as well as your choice for an at-large berth from a non-BCS league (none is an option)?
Here are mine:
ACC: Va Tech
Big 12: Texas
Big 10: Minnesota
Big East: West Virginia
Pac 10: Cal
SEC: Tennessee
At-large: None

2. What team currently out of the Top 10 (AP or Coach's, doesn't really matter), has the best chance of ending up in the title game?

3. When you're watching a game, what type of fan can you absolutely not tolerate being around?
The ones who yell and scream their heads off and yet they don’t know a thing about football and what is actually going on in the game.
Then there are always those fans who like to go to the game and sit down the entire time. Heaven forbid you actually get excited and stand up in front of them during a play. “Hey buddy, I missed that play because you were standing up. Would you please sit down so I can see?”

Tuesday, September 27, 2005


Here are the more interesting headlines from the world of sports along with my thoughts.


Testaverde back, Pennington and Fiedler gone for Jets
HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. (AP) -- Vinny Testaverde was plopped on his couch, watching his beloved New York Jets and, like millions of other fans, could hardly believe his eyes.
In a span of seven plays Sunday, not one but two quarterbacks went down, starter Chad Pennington and backup Jay Fiedler. Out for the season. Both of them, with shoulder injuries.

Patriots confirm safety Rodney Harrison's season is over
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) -- New England Patriots safety Rodney Harrison will miss the rest of the season with torn ligaments in his left knee.
The Patriots placed Harrison on injured reserve Tuesday, and agent Steve Feldman said the 32-year-old strong safety would have surgery in four to six weeks for a torn anterior cruciate ligament, medial collateral ligament and posterior cruciate ligament.

Niners place Woods on IR
SANTA CLARA, Calif. (AP) -- The San Francisco 49ers placed wide receiver Rashaun Woods on injured reserve Tuesday with a thumb injury, ending a second straight disappointing season for the team's former No. 1 draft pick.

Lions' Bryant out for season
ALLEN PARK, Mich. (AP) -- Detroit Lions cornerback Fernando Bryant is out for the season with a separated right shoulder.
The Lions put Bryant on injured reserve Tuesday and signed wide receiver Scottie Vines, who caught three passes for 51 yards in six games last year for them. Andre Goodman will replace Bryant in the starting lineup Sunday at Tampa Bay.

Bills' Spikes out for season with torn Achilles' tendon
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) -- When Buffalo's Takeo Spikes sat on the field in pain and slammed his helmet to the ground, everyone knew something was wrong. When the two-time Pro Bowl linebacker had tears in his eyes while carted to the training room, everyone knew it was serious.
Spikes, who has never missed a game due to injury in his seven-plus NFL seasons, is out for the year with a torn right Achilles' tendon.

Umm, do we have anyone left to play the games? I can’t remember a weekend in the NFL when there where this many season ending injuries to so many start caliber players. This will definitely have an impact on division races particularly in the AFC East where three teams (Bills, Jets, & Patriots) lost key players. You can pretty much erase the Jets from Wild Card contention and pencil in the Dolphins who may not be the best team in the division but as of now are the healthiest.

Clock error adds 52 seconds to Patriots-Steelers game, aids late NE drive
PITTSBURGH (AP) -- A clock error added 52 seconds to the fourth quarter of the Patriots-Steelers game Sunday. The extra time aided the Patriots during a winning drive that ended with Adam Vinatieri's 43-yard field goal with 1 second remaining.
The Patriots won 23-20, their fourth victory against the Steelers in five games since 2001, including AFC championship game victories during the 2001 and 2004 seasons.
The NFL acknowledged the mistake Monday, with director of officiating Mike Pereira issuing a statement: ``The on-field officiating crew, which oversees the official game clock operated in the press box, failed to recognize that the clock was improperly reset.''

“Clock-Gate”, this is a bigger deal if the game was in New England. If you get hosed at home by your own clock operator, what do you expect the visiting team to do about it?


Atlanta Braves Win 14th Straight Division Title

ATLANTA (AP) -- The Atlanta Braves celebrated No. 14 like it was the first. For all those rookies, it was.
With a youthful, joyful exuberance that was there way back in 1991 -- when it all started -- the Braves wrapped up their 14th straight division title on Tuesday night.

They are worse than the Energizer Bunny. They keep going and going and going, until the first round of the play-offs that is. Then they will pull off the disappointing, “How in the world did we lose that series” choke. It’s been fun Braves fans but now it is play-off time and we all know what that means.

Indians, Yankees and Red Sox Deadlocked
My gosh, would someone please pull away here? Boston had the opportunity to pull a half a game ahead of the Yankees but split two games with the Blue Jays and the AL East lead remains tied.

Cleveland had the opportunity to pull within one game of the White Sox but lost to Tampa Bay. TAMPA BAY! When you are trying to pull off the biggest comeback in recent baseball history you can’t go down to the Devil Rays.

All three teams are 92-65 and tied atop the Wild Card standings. Here is my prediction; the Red Sox win the division and the Indians win the Wild Card leaving the Yankees home for the play-offs. Heads will roll in New York!

NBA reschedules preseason games after Hornets' move

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- The New Orleans Hornets announced Monday they will play two of their preseason games at their temporary home at the Ford Center in Oklahoma City.
The changes will also affect a Seattle SuperSonics-Houston Rockets exhibition game that had been scheduled in Oklahoma City.
The Hornets will play exhibition games in Oklahoma City on Oct. 23, against the Denver Nuggets, and Oct. 27, against Houston. The Nuggets' game had been scheduled for Oct. 24, in New Orleans, and the Rockets' game was originally to be played in Laredo, Texas on Oct. 27.

This is a no-brainer after the franchise has moved to Oklahoma City. It pretty much had to be done. Listen carefully; THIS WILL NOT BE JUST A ONE YEAR MOVE FOR THE HORNETS. The Hornets have already received deposits on more than 7,500 season tickets since making the announcement last week that the team was going to relocate to Oklahoma City after Hurricane Katrina.

Oklahoma City has been dying to prove that they can be a “Big League” market and so far are more than proving it. The deal will be too sweet for the Hornets to pack up and move out after one season. Sorry New Orleans.

Sorry, I still can’t find anything here worth writing about.

NCAA Football

Tennessee comes back to beat LSU 30-27 in OT

Oklahoma State fans have seen this before. Les Miles sits on a big lead waiting for time to run out and then gets that deer in the headlights look when the other team comes storming back.

Oklahoma fans have seen this before, receivers running free in the secondary because of blown coverage and giving up the big play on Bo Pelini’s defense.

This is a marriage not made in college football heaven. As head coach at Oklahoma State Les Miles did take the Cowboys to three consecutive bowl games and he did beat the Sooners twice, but OSU never finished above 5th in the Big 12 South.

As defensive coordinator Bo Pelini’s complicated schemes in the secondary often led to confusion by defensive backs and big plays made by opposing offenses.

When you combine the two together you get well, you get the 2005 LSU Tigers. Welcome to coaching in the big time Les. Enjoy it while it last.


Aikman and Staubach make first hire

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) -- Hall of Fame Racing made its first hire Tuesday when it tabbed Philippe Lopez to build the NASCAR team owned by former Dallas Cowboys quarterbacks Roger Staubach and Troy Aikman.
Lopez was hired as a crew chief, and will be in charge of getting the Nextel Cup team ready to debut next season.
``My first priority is to get the shop up and running,'' Lopez said. ``We are working very closely with Joe Gibbs Racing. That will give us a great advantage right from the start.”

Where else other than in NASCAR can you find Dallas Cowboys working with a Washington Redskin? It’s the healing power of racing.

Nextel Cup Standings

Total Pts Starts Poles Wins Top 5 Top 10 DNF Winnings

1 Jimmie Johnson
5362 Leader 28 2 3 10 17 4 $5,552,236
2 Rusty Wallace
5355 7 28 0 0 8 16 0 $3,976,507
3 Ryan Newman
5350 12 28 6 1 7 12 3 $4,481,361
4 Mark Martin
5341 21 28 0 0 7 14 1 $4,526,193
5 Greg Biffle
5339 23 28 0 5 11 16 1 $4,465,203
6 Tony Stewart
5339 23 28 3 5 13 19 1 $5,675,572
7 Jeremy Mayfield
5281 81 28 0 1 4 8 1 $3,730,838
8 Carl Edwards
5259 103 28 1 2 8 11 1 $3,377,418
9 Matt Kenseth
5238 124 28 1 1 7 12 4 $4,446,811
10 Kurt Busch
5192 170 28 0 3 8 14 3 $5,600,468

Blog Poll, Week Five

1 Southern Cal (42)
2 Texas (5)
3 Virginia Tech
4 Florida
5 Georgia
6 Florida State
7 Ohio State
8 Tennessee
9 Michigan State
10 Miami (Florida)
11 Louisiana State
12 Arizona State
13 Cal
14 Notre Dame
15 Alabama
16 Minnesota
17 Wisconsin
18 Texas Tech
20 Boston College
21 Virginia
22 Purdue
23 Iowa State
24 Georgia Tech
25 Louisville
Also Receiving Votes: Texas A&M(2.0), Auburn(1.7), Vanderbilt(1.1), West Virginia(0.9), Penn State(0.7), Oregon(0.7), UTEP(0.5), Michigan(0.4), South Florida(0.4), Toledo(0.3), Clemson(0.3), Iowa(0.2), Fresno State(0.1), TCU(0.1), Kansas State(0.0), Wyoming(0.0),

Total Ballots: 48

Monday, September 26, 2005

NFL Round-Up, Week Three

Big Games
Atlanta @ Buffalo Falcons 24/Bills 16 – Michael Vick threw two touchdown passes and ran for 64 yards on 9 carries while Falcons running backs Warrick Dunn and T.J. Duckett ran for 172 yards.

The Bills were supposed to have a question mark on the offensive side of the ball with the quarterback position, but the problem seems to be the run defense. Giving up yards on the ground the way Buffalo has will keep the Bills out of play-off contention.

New England @ Pittsburg Patriots 23/Steelers 20 – I thought we were seeing the return of the Steel Curtin defense? Tom Brady shredded the Steelers defense for 372 yards and the Patriot defense shut-down the Pittsburg running game in a game that lived up to its billing.

This was a big win for the Patriots but it was even bigger for the Indianapolis Colts who now, at 3-0, have the inside track to home field advantage in the play-offs.

Big Upset
Carolina @ MiamiDolphins 27/Panthers 24 – Rookie running back Ronnie Brown ran for 132 yards on 23 carries to become the first Dolphins rookie to run for over 100 yards in six years.
Carolina receiver Steve Smith caught 11 passes for 170 yards and three touchdowns including a game tying 53 yard score in the fourth quarter to tie the game at 24.

It was Miami safety Lance Schulters who stole the show with a 37 yard interception return, with two minutes left, to set up Olindo Mare’s game winning 32 yard field goal with four seconds left.

“We’re not the worst team in the league like some people make us out to be,” Schulters said. “We believe in ourselves and our abilities, and we like to stick it to people who don’t believe in us.”

Worst Game

Cleveland @ IndianapolisColts 13/Browns 6 – I thought this would be the week where Peyton Manning would have his break-out game. Instead Edgerrin James ran for 108 yards on 27 carries and a touchdown and kicker Mike Vander Vanderjagt knocked in two field goals. I’m still waiting on that break-out game by Manning.

Seasons Over
Buffalo Linebacker Takeo Spikes – Out for the season with a ruptured Achilles.
New England Safety Rodney Harrison – Out for the season with a torn ACL.
New York Jets Quarterback Chad Pennington – Out for the season with a torn rotator cuff.

Looking Ahead to Week Four
Big Game
Denver @ Jacksonville – The Broncos are coming off a big Monday night win over their rival Kansas City Chiefs and the Jaguars don’t want to fall two games behind the Colts.

Prediction – Jaguars 17/Broncos 13

Possible Upset

New York Jets @ Baltimore – I’m not sure if you can call this an upset because the Jets will be playing their third string quarterback. Look for the Baltimore defense to take advantage of the situation. The Ravens will still struggle on offense but should muster enough to beat the Jets.

Prediction – Ravens 10/Jets 6

Miami Dolphins
The Dolphins are off next week. They have already won half as many games as they did last season. Things definitely look like they are on the up and up.

Chicago, Cleveland, Pittsburg.

My Vote in the Blog Poll

Here is my vote in this week’s blog poll. New to my Top 25 are the Wisconsin Badgers, Iowa State Cyclones, UCLA Bruins, and the Vanderbilt Commodores. Gone from my Top 25 are the Michigan Wolverines, Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets, Iowa Hawkeyes, and the Louisville Cardinals.

Biggest Rise
Minnesota moves from #19 to #11.

Biggest Fall
Purdue falls from #10 to #24.

1 Southern Cal (1)
2 Texas (2)
3 Florida (3)
4 Virginia Tech (5)
5 Georgia (6)
6 Florida State (7)
7 Tennessee (9)
8 Cal (11)
9 Ohio State (12)
10 Texas Tech (13)
11 Minnesota (19)
12 Louisiana State (4)
13 Miami (Florida) (14)
14 Notre Dame (15)
15 Arizona State (17)
16 Boston College (18)
17 Alabama (22)
18 Texas A&M (21)
19 Virginia (23)
20 West Virginia (25)
21 Wisconsin (NR)
22 Iowa State (NR)
23 UCLA (NR)
24 Purdue Boilermakers (10)
25 Vanderbilt (NR)

Sunday, September 25, 2005

College Football Round-Up, Week Four

Football World Upside Down
Iowa, Michigan and Oklahoma all started the season ranked in the top ten. Now they each have two losses and are unranked. Baylor, Iowa State and Vanderbilt are all undefeated after four weeks of play.

New Conference, Same Result
The University of South Florida made their Conference USA debut against Louisville in October of 2003, upsetting the Cardinals 30-27 in double-overtime. Their Big East debut would be much different. This time the Bulls wouldn’t need overtime as they manhandled #9 Louisville 45-14.

Officially on the Hot Seat
After dropping their second game in three weeks Michigan coach Lloyd Carr is officially on the hot seat. The Wolverines will need to run the table for Carr to have any hope of keeping his job. Here is a question for Michigan fans. Do you want to keep him?

Road Tested
USC took their show on the road to face the Oregon Ducks at Autzen Stadium and early it had all the makings of a blow-out, for Oregon. The Ducks led 13-0 then the Trojans woke up and did their thing, 45 points later USC had a 45-13 lead.

``Everybody is gunning for us and we understand that,'' USC defensive end Frostee Rucker said. ``It's hard to be No. 1, but somebody's got to do it.''

There is no question that USC should be a unanimous #1 in every poll in America. The Trojans get to go on the road again next week to Tempe to play #14 Arizona State. The Sun Devils should be the strongest test yet because of their offense. It should be a high scoring and entertaining game.

Conference Power-Rankings
Here is a look at the conferences ranked from strongest to weakest, through the first four weeks.
PAC 10
Big 12
Big 10
Big East

Hokie Pokie
Look out for Virginia Tech. Seriously! The Hokies are rolling to the top of the ACC and the Polls; they got a first place vote in the coache’s poll. They are nasty on defense and improving weekly on offense. If they were to run the table and win a conference championship game I think they would bump an undefeated Texas team out of the BCS title game.

Most Over-RatedWhich team would you say was most over-rated so far this season?
Be sure to make you vote on this week's poll.

Heisman Performances

Here is how our five Heisman candidates performed over the fourth weekend of the college football season. They are in order from the most deserving (1) to not in the same league (5).

1. Most Deserving – Matt Leinart (QB) USC – 23-39 316 yards, 3 TD’s, 1 INT
Overall Stats – 59-87 1029 yards, 10 TD’s, 2 INT’s. 1 rushing TD
2. Close Second – Reggie Bush (RB) USC – 20 rushes 122 yards 1 TD, 3 receptions 43 yards 1 TD
Overall Stats - 40 carries 333 yards, 4 TD’s, 10 receptions 171 yards 2 TD’s.
3. Slipping – Vince Young (QB) Texas - Off
Overall Stats – 39-60 544 yards, 5 TD’s, 4 INT’s, 35 rushes 202 yards, 1 TD.
4. Needs to Improve – Adrian Peterson (RB) - OU
Overall Stats – 77 carries 341 yards, 5 TD’s, 8 receptions 42 yards.
5. Not in the Same League – Jarod Zabransky (QB) Boise State – 16-23 202, 14 rushes 64 yards 3 TD’s
Overall Stats – 43-76 505 - yards, 3 TD’s, 4 INT’s, 27 rushes 101 yards, 3 TD’s.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Last Minute Football Notes

Big Game

Colorado @ Miami – Last year’s Big 12 runner up will travel to Miami to face a Hurricane team that has looked both impressive and surprisingly dull this season. Last week’s triple overtime win against Clemson was a huge momentum builder for Miami and it should carry over to this week.

What does Colorado have to do to win? Make Miami beat them with the pass. Hurricanes quarterback Kyle Wright has grown up some since the Florida State game, but he is still a freshman and I think could be rattled. Points are going to be hard to come by for the Buffs so their defense will need to stop the run first and then make the freshman beat them.

If Colorado can generate at least 13 points and hold down the Miami rushing attack they should have a shot late in the game.

Bottom Line - This is a talent miss-match so Colorado will have to get creative. I think the Colorado defense might be able to slow down the Miami offense but look out if they don’t get any support from the offensive side. That South Florida humidity will seem like 1000%. This isn’t the Miami Hurricanes of three years ago, but they are still more talented than Colorado. The Miami defense will do very well against Colorado and I just don’t see the Buffs scoring enough to be close.

PredictionMiami 24/Colorado 10

Cream Puff of the Week Indiana State @ Texas Tech – You would think that Mike Leach went to the Bill Snyder School of scheduling or something, Sam Houston State last week and now Indiana State. This game will get ugly quickly. No way Tech keeps the score under 70.

PredictionTexas Tech 87/ Indiana State 10

Game No One Cares About
Texas State @ Texas A&M – Moved to Thursday night because of hurricane Rita, but no one cares. The hurricane is the bigger story here.

Possible Upset
North Texas @ Kansas State – The Wildcats play at Oklahoma next weekend and are in danger of looking ahead. North Texas was embarrassed last week by Tulsa. This looks like it could be a trap for Kansas State. It will be closer than you might think.

PredictionKansas State 20/North Texas 14

Other Big 12 Games
Iowa State @ Army – Prediction, Iowa State 31/Army 17

Teams Off This WeekBaylor – October 1 @ Texas A&M
Kansas – October 1 @ Texas Tech
Missouri – October 1 against Texas
Nebraska – October 1 against Iowa State
Oklahoma – October 1 against Kansas State
Oklahoma State – October 1 against Colorado
Texas – October 1 @ Missouri

Sooners Going Back to the Basics During Off Week

The good news is that OU finally played a game where you walked away feeling as if they had a game plan and the personnel to win. The bad news is that the personnel’s failure to execute properly cost them that opportunity as OU fell to 1-2 with as loss to UCLA in the Rose Bowl.

Well, what can you take from a loss like this? According to OU coach Bob Stoops the Sooners can look at this game and learn to play harder. ``To me, the biggest factor is we can play smarter than we're playing. We can play harder. Our guys wanted to play, they were prepared to play, but we have to learn to play at a higher tempo when we're playing.'' Stoops said earlier this week.

In a 17 point loss to the Bruins the Sooners had several miscues including a dropped touchdown pass by receiver Quentin Chaney. Fumbles by Lendy Holmes, Adrian Peterson and Rhett Bomar led to 17 UCLA points. There were also several missed tackles by the defense

Offensive coordinator Chuck Long said the approach at this point in the season is far different than that of his past five years at Oklahoma. Instead of brushing up the basics with veterans, coaches will be trying to teach those fundamentals to younger players.

``I would look at this week for us as like a training camp,'' Long said. ``We're back in camp.''

``With new guys or young guys, they haven't seen it before,'' Long said. ``Every snap is a new snap. There's nothing to refer back to.''
These Sooner pups have a week to grow up before they begin preparation for conference play. Kansas State comes to Norman on October 1 then the Sooners travel to Dallas to play the #2 Texas Longhorns.

Going into conference play it will be important for OU to build confidence and regain their swagger. A home win against Kansas State would go a long way towards that.

``Now, it's more building their confidence. That's where we're at,'' Stoops said. ``We have to just do our job, do it as hard as we can do it and just play smarter. If we do that alone, we've got a chance to improve. Just not making mistakes and take care of the ball.''

The biggest problem these youngsters face is taking care of the ball according to Stoops. ``To me, you look at both of those games, the turnovers are the biggest issue, and the turnovers lead to all the other problems.''

The truth is that the Sooners made miles of improvement during the UCLA game and should continue to improve each week as the young players gain experience. I wouldn’t write them off just yet. With eight games to go they still have time to turn this season into a winning one. I’m not going to be bold enough to say Big 12 Championship, but I believe a bowl game is still very much in reach.

``I want our team to know that we are not far off,'' Stoops said. ``We'll get those turnovers and we'll get those calls as we go through the year.''

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Buster's Best

When you are 9 years old you are not supposed to be able to give your dad a spanking. That’s exactly what Buster has done the past two weeks with our picks and he is proud. I on the other hand have a lot of catching up to do and hope to start this week.

Last week’s picks.

Game 1, Miami Dolphins @ NY Jets– Buster picked the Jets and won. I went with my heart and took the six points that Miami was getting and lost. Buster 1-0/Dad 0-1
Game 2, Washington Redskins @ Dallas Cowboys – Buster picked the Cowboys and was heartbroken, I also had the six points that Dallas was giving and thought it would cover easy with about four minutes to go in the game. Boy was I wrong. Buster 1-1/Dad 0-2
Game 3, OU @ UCLA – Buster picked the Sooners and I took the 7 points they were getting. It seemed like a good pick, but 17 points off of turnovers did us in. Buster 1-2/Dad 0-3
Game 4, Arkansas State @ Oklahoma State – Buster picked the Cowboys, no-brainer, and even I got it right by taking the 25 points that the Indians were getting. Buster 2-2/Dad 1-3.
Game 5, San Diego State @ Ohio State – Buster picked the Buckeyes and won. I took the 27 points San Diego State was getting and won as well. Buster 3-2/Dad 2-3.
For the season - Buster 8-7/Dad 6-9

This weeks picks

Game 1, Dallas Cowboys @ San Francisco 49ers
– Buster likes the Cowboys to win and I can’t quit thinking about that Monday night meltdown that gave me a losing week. I don’t see it happening this week. I’ll take the 7 points Dallas is giving.
Game 2, Cleveland Browns @ Indianapolis Colts – Buster likes the Colts and I say this one has blow-out written all over it. The Browns are coming off a big win and the Colts a sub par offensive performance. Sounds like a trap for Cleveland to me. Give me the 14 points that the Colts are giving to the Browns.
Game 3, Memphis @ Tulsa – Tulsa got their first win of the season last week by upsetting North Texas. Buster likes them to win again this week and so do I. I’ll take the one point that Tulsa is giving.
Game 4, Iowa @ Ohio State – This is Iowa’s chance to show they belong with the elite of the Big 10. We are not buying it. Buster likes Ohio State and I like them to cover the 7 points they are giving.
Game 5, Tennessee @ LSU – Buster likes the Volunteers to win and I think it will be close. Close enough to take the 6.5 points that they are getting from the Tigers.

Congratulations to Buster for starting his flag football career. In his first game Saturday he caught a touchdown pass and ran for a touchdown on his teams way to an 18-0 victory.

OU/Texas Game Could be Moving

Both sides play this card when it is time to start re-negotiating the contract with the city of Dallas, but I think it might be legit this time because the city has refused to make improvements to the Cotton Bowl.

University of Oklahoma President David Boren said that the series has a greater chance than ever of becoming a home-and-home series, according to the Norman Transcript.

Boren stated that the city of Dallas’ unwillingness to improve the Cotton Bowl, coupled with recent renovations to the football stadiums in Norman and in Austin, are turning the tide towards ending the Red River Shoot-Out in Dallas.

The game is under contract with the Cotton Bowl and the city of Dallas until 2008. I think they might be bluffing but it could cost the city of Dallas millions of dollars to call it.

Blog Poll Week Four

1 Southern Cal (41)
2 Texas (5)
3 Louisiana State
4 Florida
5 Virginia Tech
6 Georgia
7 Florida State
8 Louisville
9 Ohio State
10 Tennessee
11 Miami (Florida)
12 Purdue
13 Michigan
14 Georgia Tech
15 Arizona State
16 Cal
17 Michigan State
18 Notre Dame
19 Alabama
20 Texas Tech
21 Iowa
23 Iowa State
24 Boston College
25 Virginia
Also Receiving Votes: Minnesota(2.1), Texas A&M(2.1), Oregon(1.9), Clemson(1.7), Wisconsin(1.1), Auburn(1.0), Colorado(0.6), North Carolina State(0.6), Vanderbilt(0.6), UTEP(0.3), West Virginia(0.3), Penn State(0.2), Toledo(0.1), TCU(0.0), New Mexico(0.0), Fresno State(0.0),

Total Ballots: 47

Tuesday, September 20, 2005


Here are the more interesting headlines from the world of sports along with my thoughts.


Texans fire offensive coordinator Palmer

The Houston Texans fired offensive coordinator Chris Palmer on Monday following the team's second straight embarrassing loss.
Joe Pendry, the team's offensive line coach, was introduced as his replacement by coach Dom Capers Monday afternoon.
``We have not performed up to our expectations,'' Capers said. ``We needed to make an adjustment to help us move forward in the direction we want to go.''

Okay Dom, where exactly do you think you are going? You have a team that has underachieved for at least the last two seasons and an offensive line that has given up 13 sacks in the first two games of this season. Palmer is nothing but a goat here, and by the end of the season it will be Capers head on the chopping block.

Here is my favorite quote from this story.

Quarterback David Carr said he didn't like the feeling he's had the last two weeks and that he's happy with any change that will improve the team.
``I just want to get back to where we feel good about going out on Sundays,'' Carr said. ``Feel like we have a chance to go out and compete against the teams that we feel like we're just as good as.''

If you don’t like the way if feels when you play then change the way you play. Get better!

Katrina telethon raises $5 million
A fund-raising telethon that featured more than 30 current and former NFL players raised $5 million for the Bush-Clinton Katrina Fund in about 6 1/2 hours.
Monday night's telethon was part of the NFL's ``Hurricane Relief Weekend'' and coincided with a special ``Monday Night Football'' doubleheader on ABC and ESPN. Players such as John Elway, Donovan McNabb, Art Shell and Frank Gifford took turns, 12 at a time, spending between 75 minutes to 2 hours answering telephones and taking donations.
``We appreciate the tremendous response of our fans and everything that our teams and players are doing to support the relief effort,'' NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue said. ``We are going to stay at it because all of America is going to have to stay at it.''
NFL teams and relief organizations have raised approximately $4 million from fans at stadiums for Hurricane Katrina relief, the league said, bringing the total generated by the NFL to $21 million.

Give the NFL a pat on the back for this one. It was a great idea and it goes to a needy cause. The only it could have been better is if they would have found a place that would give New Orleans some sort of home field advantage. Has anyone ever heard of a place called Baton Rouge?


Red Sox roll to stay atop AL East

Home runs from Manny Ramirez and David Ortiz helped lift Boston past Tampa Bay and stay in first place in the AL East.

Man if you are a Red Sox fan how bad are you freaking out right now? A half game is all that separates the opportunity to win the pennant or possibly stay home for the play-offs. Sox fans have been here before. Has anyone seen Bucky Dent?

White Sox on verge of historic collapse
Leading the AL Central by 15 games on Aug. 1 and on the verge of a runaway, the White Sox find themselves hanging on with two weeks to go, trying to hold off the hard-charging Cleveland Indians.
Chicago is still tops the league in wins, but a 7-5 loss to the Indians on Monday night cut its edge to 2 1/2 games. It was the eighth loss in 11 games for the White Sox and suddenly, instead of the playoffs, there's talk about them blowing the biggest lead ever.

What’s the real story here, the White Sox or the Indians? There is plenty of blame to heap on the Sox here for their self destruction, but tons of credit should go to Cleveland for not giving up and putting themselves in the position to make history.


Are the Hornets headed to Oklahoma City?
An announcement could come any time on plans to temporarily relocate the Hornets to Oklahoma City.

The announcement has already been made in Oklahoma City. The city and the NBA have reached an agreement to bring the Hornets to the Sooner state. This will be huge for the city and the state. It’s a one year trial for Oklahoma to get out of the minor leagues and also a great opportunity to show off the Ford Center, where the Hornets will be playing.

NCAA Football

Vanderbilt Undefeated

Vanderbilt's is off to it's first 3-0 start since 1984 and first 2-0 conference record since 1956.

It’s a true sign of the end times when Vanderbilt and Baylor have a better chance of winning the BCS Championship than OU does three weeks into the season. Give these teams credit for shaking off losing tradition and beginning their season undefeated. Let’s just hope that they can pick up three more wins and become bowl eligible.

Sugar Bowl will not be in New Orleans
The Sugar Bowl will be played in either Baton Rouge, La., or Atlanta, GA. Sugar Bowl officials said Tuesday they will know in about three weeks whether Louisiana has recovered sufficiently to keep the game in the state where it has been played every year since it was established in 1935.
Tiger Stadium on the LSU campus holds almost 92,000 and would make an adequate game site, but the city of Baton Rouge has insufficient hotel rooms and infrastructure to host an event that would attract thousands on Jan. 2.
That means New Orleans would need to be ready to house most of the fans, participants and media going to the game.
``We are going to continue to talk with city and state officials, everybody who will need to be involved in this process,'' Sugar Bowl executive director Paul Hoolahan said in a teleconference from Chicago with BCS officials. ``This is totally about New Orleans.''
Atlanta already has given Sugar Bowl officials the OK to use the Georgia Dome, which hosts the Southeastern Conference championship game in December. That made Atlanta an obvious and convenient choice as a temporary home for one of college football's longest-running and most recognizable events.

The Sugar Bowl is one of my favorite bowl games; I was there in 2004 when LSU won the Championship. it doesn’t matter where they move it to, it won’t be the same. I think it’s important to mention the millions of dollars that New Orleans is going to lose by not hosting this game. If it goes to Atlanta, and I think it will, there should be some sort of pay out to the city of New Orleans.
The question is also there now, If the Sugar Bowl leaves the state of Louisiana will if ever come back? What do you think?


Rough start

With a number of intentional wrecks and retaliations, what was supposed to be the start of NASCAR's shining moment – its 10-race Chase – wound up being one of its ugliest races in a long time, the exciting finish between winner Ryan Newman and runner-up Tony Stewart notwithstanding.

NASCAR has done such a good job at marketing themselves that this will even boost ratings more, because now WWE fans will tune in. Here is the series of events that unfolded on Sunday.

First we saw Michael Waltrip ram Robby Gordon – Waltrip said it was an accident, Gordon said otherwise. Then we saw Gordon try to back up his mangled car into Waltrip's No. 15 when he passed by on the next lap. Failing to do that, Gordon got out of his car, waited for Waltrip to come by again, played chicken with him by standing in front of Waltrip's car and then wildly heaved his helmet at the No. 15 car as Waltrip passed by.
"Everyone thinks Michael is a good guy," Gordon said. "He's not the good guy like he acts like he is. The caution was out and he wrecked me. He's a piece of [expletive]."
Then there's Kasey Kahne. In the midst of a difficult sophomore season, Kahne once again tangled with another driver, this time rookie Kyle Busch.
After the initial wreck, Kahne limped his damaged car along the bottom of the track until he saw Busch in his rearview mirror. Then, just when it looked like Kahne was heading to pit road, he made a quick move to the right, forcing Busch to hit him and causing damage to Busch's car.
There were the two other incidents of note. First, on just the second lap, Scott Riggs slid into Kurt Busch, sending the defending Cup champ into the wall. Busch stormed out of his car, walked the entire length of pit road to talk with Rodney Childers, Riggs' crew chief.
"We've had issues in the past and this isn't where you want to repay anybody," Busch said. "The 10 got into us. He just got loose. He was a car on the bottom side and needed to give more room to guys on the high side."
Busch did make some derogatory remarks toward Riggs, who wouldn't back down after the race.
"That same thing happened at Indy to us," he said. [Busch] got into us when we were running in the top 10 and he didn't think it was necessary to come over and apologize to me, so I don't feel like I owe him an apology."
There also was Jimmy Spencer, who got turned into the wall by Rusty Wallace. Mr. Excitement waited until Wallace passed by on the next lap, but instead of doing a Gordon- or Kahne-like retaliatory move, simply smiled and waved – and that was the end of it.

A friendly driver is a safe driver.

I really believe we have the beginnings for the first NASCAR Royal Rumble. It could be a pay-per-view event. Just remember it was my idea.

NFL Round Up, Week Two

Big Game

Kansas City Chiefs at Oakland Raiders – Chiefs 23/Raiders 17. The Raiders were able to play Kansas City closer than I thought they would. With Randy Moss Oakland will be able to produce enough offense to stay in games like they did Sunday night and last week against New England. It’s the Raiders defense that will cost them a winning season.

Big Upsets
New England Patriots at Carolina Panthers – Panthers 27/Patriots 17. This was a must win for the Panthers after losing week one to New Orleans which made it a tough spot for the Patriots and also showed that the defending World Champs are vulnerable. I called it last week on My Opinion on Sports.

Washington Redskins at Dallas Cowboys
– Redskins 14/Cowboys 13. I was there in person to see the Cowboys snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Dallas became way too conservative on offense and the defense became over confident in the 4th quarter. It is amazing how quiet 70,000 people can become.

Buffalo at Tampa Bay – Bucs 19/Bills 3. It’s not so much the fact that Tampa Bay won, it’s that Buffalo only scored 3 points in their loss. Maybe the Bills have more maturing to do than we thought after week one. Cadillac Williams seems to be the real deal.

Cleveland Browns at Green Bay Packers – Browns 26/Packers 24. Huge win for the Browns. Devastating loss for the Packers who are now 0-2.

Worst Game
St. Louis Rams at Arizona Cardinals – Rams 17/Cardinals 12. Wow, what has happened to the Rams? Week one they are upset by the 49ers and now they are a Kurt Warner blunder, time clock management, away from possibly being upset by the Cardinals. I initially thought the Rams would challenge the Panthers for the division, but now I’m not sure.

Welcome HomeThe Saints began their home season Monday night on the road in New York against the Giants. Despite having Saints banners around the stadium and the field painted with their logo and colors this was clearly a home game for the New York Giants. The NFL should be ashamed of themselves for letting this happen. There are plenty of places in the Southern United States where this game could have been played. If I am an NFC team battling for a Wild Card spot, I would be hot under the collar if the Giants were ahead of me by one game.

Looking Ahead at Week Two

Big Games
Atlanta Falcons at Buffalo Bills – Both teams stumbled in week two and now need a win to keep from going 1-2. Both teams would play in very tough divisions and would have their work cut out to recover from being below .500 this early in the season. I think Atlanta has the better defense. Both teams have explosive offenses but I like Atlanta’s running possibilities if Vick is healthy.
Prediction: Atlanta 24/Buffalo 10

New England Patriots at Pittsburg Steelers – This could be a possible preview of the AFC Championship game. I don’t think it will be. I predicted the Patriots vs. the Colts. The Patriots are looking to prove they are still the best team in the AFC and the Steelers are trying to take that spot. This should be the best game on Sunday and if you are not planning on watching it then you are not a football fan.
Prediction: New England 27/Pittsburg 24

Possible Upset
Cincinnati at Chicago – The Bengal’s are making serious strides towards becoming a play-off contender and their offense is explosive. However, I like the Bears defense and I think at home they will have a great chance to give Cincinnati their first loss of the season.
Prediction: Chicago 17/Cincinnati 13

Miami DolphinsThe Dolphins suffered a horrible loss in a game they really needed to win against the Jets. Miami struggled to run the ball against the Jets and that allowed New York to focus more on Miami’s passing game as well.
Miami has their work cut out for them this week as they host the Carolina Panthers. I honestly can’t see how Miami wins this game. I hope that I’m wrong, but I think that the entire Dolphin offense will struggle against the Panthers defense.
Prediction: Carolina 21/Miami 3

My Vote in the Blog Poll

Here is my vote in this week’s blog poll. New to my Top 25 are the West Virginia Mountaineers. Gone from my Top 25 are the Oklahoma Sooners.

Teams Moving Up
Florida, Georgia, Florida State, Louisville, Ohio State, Texas Tech, Miami (FL), Virginia, Iowa

Biggest Rise
Florida goes from #6 to #3.

Teams Moving Down
Tennessee, Notre Dame

Biggest Fall
Tennessee goes from #3 to #9.

1 Southern Cal (1)
2 Texas (2)
3 Florida (6)
4 Louisiana State (4)
5 Virginia Tech (5)
6 Georgia (7)
7 Florida State (8)
8 Louisville (9)
9 Tennessee (3)
10 Purdue (10)
11 Cal (11)
12 Ohio State (13)
13 Texas Tech (14)
14 Miami (Florida) (16)
15 Notre Dame (12)
16 Michigan (16)
17 Arizona State (17)
18 Boston College (18)
19 Minnesota (19)
20 Georgia Tech (20)
21 Texas A&M (21)
22 Alabama (22)
23 Virginia (24)
24 Iowa (25)
25 West Virginia (NR)

Monday, September 19, 2005

Sooners Give the Game Away

Take no credit away from UCLA for a hard earned victory on Saturday in Pasadena, but OU did their part in making in easy for the Bruins with six fumbles. The Sooners lost three of them that led to 17 points, the margin of victory for UCLA 41-24 .

``You're not going to win when you turn the ball over and put the ball on the ground like we did,'' Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops said. ``It's just poor football. Until we can be responsible with the ball, it's impossible to win.

OU took the momentum on their first possession of the game, after a missed UCLA field goal, when Travis Wilson went 56 yards for a touchdown on a reverse. Then they quickly gave it away when Lendy Holmes muffed a punt that set up the tying score for the Bruins. Next, Adrian Peterson fumbled which set up a UCLA field goal, and the final nail in the coffin was when quarterback Rhett Bomar was blindsided by safety Dennis Keyes. Bomar fumbled the ball and it was picked up by Linebacker Spencer Havner and returned 13 yards for a touchdown.

In all I thought the Sooners had a solid game plan and actually played well enough to win the game, but they just kept shooting themselves in the foot. It’s not often that I walk away from a loss feeling a little encouraged, but for some reason I did with this game. I don’t feel as if the Sooners were outplayed or out coached, they just put the ball on the ground too many times. I’m not quite ready to turn my attention to basketball just yet, where the Sooners will be a top 10 team, I think there is life in this football team and as these freshmen and sophomores get more game experience they are only going to get better.

What I Liked

Rhett Bomar’s passing – 20-29 241 yards, 16 yard TD run. ``I felt like Rhett started to get some rhythm and confidence in what he was doing,'' Stoops said of the redshirt freshman's outing against UCLA. ``Our receivers made some nice plays, and that part of it, I feel like we're getting somewhere.''
Reggie Smith's Kick Returns – 4 returns 97 yards.
Run Defense – UCLA 85 total rushing yards
Offensive game plan – Hopefully they will continue to be creative.

Still Work to Be Done

They are still having trouble with the center/quarterback exchange. Now that the playbook has opened a little for the passing game, maybe it will for the run game as well.

Salt in the Wounds

The Sooners had two takeaways taken away. A fumbled snap by UCLA QB Drew Olsen fumbled a snap from the center that was recovered by the Sooners only to be whistled dead and the ball given back to UCLA. Is this little league flag football where a QB fumble is whistled dead?

Also, in a stroke of officiating genus and brilliance a second half interception was called back by a phantom hold on cornerback Chijioke Onyenegecha. Replay clearly showed there was not hold and any contact made was well after the ball had been tipped.

The Sooners lost because of fumbles, dropped passes and bad plays, but these officiating errors came at critical times in the game and didn’t help matters out any.

Big Man on Campus
WR Travis Wilson – 7 receptions 103 yards, 2 rushes 61 yards, 1 TD

Looking Ahead
The Sooners are off next week and have two weeks to prepare for their next home game against Kansas State on October 1.

Heisman Performances

Here is how our five Heisman candidates performed over the third weekend of the college football season. They are in order from the most deserving (1) to not in the same league (5).

1. Most Deserving – Matt Leinart (QB) USC – 18-24 381 yards, 4 TD’s, 1 rushing TD.
Overall Stats – 36-48 713 yards, 7 TD’s, 1 INT. 1 rushing TD
2. Close Second – Reggie Bush (RB) USC – 8 rushes 125 yards 1 TD, 3 receptions 70 yards 1 TD
Overall Stats - 20 carries 211 yards, 3 TD’s, 7 receptions 128 yards 1 TD.
3. Slipping – Vince Young (QB) Texas – 8-14 101 yards, 0 TD’s 1 INT, 8 rushes 77 yards.
Overall Stats – 39-60 544 yards, 5 TD’s, 4 INT’s, 35 rushes 202 yards, 1 TD.
4. Needs to Improve – Adrian Peterson (RB) OU – 23 rushes 58 yards, 1 TD, 4 receptions 18 yards.
Overall Stats – 77 carries 341 yards, 5 TD’s, 8 receptions 42 yards.
5. Not in the Same League – Jarod Zabransky (QB) Boise State – Off
Overall Stats – 27-53 303- yards, 3 TD’s, 4 INT’s, 13 rushes 37 yards.

Hornets Are Coming to OKC

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) -- Oklahoma City officials are drafting a proposed lease agreement that will bring the NBA's New Orleans Hornets to the Ford Center to play at least part of their 41-game home schedule.
An announcement is scheduled as early as Monday on plans to temporarily relocate the Hornets to Oklahoma City after Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans, making it unfeasible for the team to play its season, which starts in November, in its hometown.
It is still not known how many games, if any, might be played in Louisiana. The Times-Picayune reported Sunday the team would establish most of their base operations in Oklahoma City, but would also keep a smaller office in either New Orleans or Baton Rouge.
Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett said the number of games to be played in Louisiana will be decided by the NBA and Louisiana authorities.
Cornett said a city council meeting will be scheduled Wednesday morning to review the proposed contract. He said he is not sure the public will have a chance to review it beforehand.
``We're calling a council meeting as soon as we can,'' Cornett told The Associated Press late Sunday. ``Everything is going well, but we still have a few details to work out.''
NBA representatives toured the Ford Center, which seats 19,675 when configured for basketball games, and met with Oklahoma City officials on Sept. 9.
``If the games can't be played in Louisiana for whatever reason, I'm anxious for Oklahoma City to have a chance to prove that it's a major league market,'' Cornett said.
Cornett previously said the agreement will include some expenses the city and state will be asked share as part of the move.
If the team moves to Oklahoma City, it is expected to relocate 100 employees from Louisiana and also hire 50 people locally to do a ``rapid ramp-up'' of telemarketing and ticket sales promotions.
Combined with the players, the team would bring an approximate $50 million payroll to the state -- an incentive, Cornett told The Oklahoman, for the state to share in providing support for the team's expenses.
Rep. Joe Dorman, D-Rush Springs, has said he plans to file legislation that would provide state money to the city to help pay for the teams relocation costs.
``This is not just a good thing for Oklahoma City to host this team while their facilities are rebuilt,'' Dorman said in a statement. ``It also is a promotion for the entire state with teams and fans that would travel here for games and, in turn, a strong boost to our economy.''
Oklahoma City is not the only city that has offered the team a temporary home. Others include Nashville, San Diego, Kansas City, Louisville and Las Vegas.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Last Minute Football Notes

Big Game
OU @ UCLA – Bob Stoops continues to find himself in unfamiliar territory. The Sooners are on the road in Pasadena in a must win situation. OU hasn’t played Texas, Texas A&M or even Oklahoma State yet, but many in the public eye are already writing off a season that is not even three games old yet. This is the Sooners final chance to prove to the college football world that they actually are improving before starting Big 12 Conference play.

What does OU have to do on offense to win? It’s simple, pass the football. That seems easier said than done. OU quarterbacks have thrown for 170 yards, 0 touchdowns and 3 interceptions in their first two games. Look for OU to be a little more creative using short slants, screens and behind the line passes to try to loosen up the running game for Adrian Peterson. Also, the Sooners may attempt to roll the pocket to buy more time for Rhett Bomar on long passes.

Also look for some running plays by the OU quarterbacks on read plays and mis-directions.

Bottom Line: UCLA will attempt to do what TCU did by stacking the box and daring OU to beat them by passing. If Travis Wilson has a good day receiving and Peterson is able to rush for over a hundred yards, then OU should be in the game with a chance to win in the fourth quarter.

What does OU have to do on defense to win? Find Marcedes Lewis and get pressure on Drew Olson. Lewis is an NFL caliber tight end who can kill you if not accounted for. Look for true freshman safety Reggie Smith to get the opportunity to cover him. Last week OU struggled to find Tulsa tight end Garrett Mills which prompted the switch to using Reggie Smith this week.

Look for different blitz packages in order to harass quarterback Drew Olson. The Sooners are notorious for running zone blitzes against the pass and the run. On Saturday linebackers, safeties and corners should be coming from everywhere in an attempt to wreak havoc in the Bruins’ backfield.

Bottom Line: The defensive backs seem to have improved this season and I like the linebackers matched up with running back Maurice Drew. If the Sooners can account for Lewis and keep Olson on his back the will be in good shape.

Coaching Edge: Has to go to Bob Stoops! It’s time for him to prove his merit. A win in Pasadena will go a long way in squelching criticism from fans and the media. Stoops was great in 2000 embracing the role of the underdog and instilling that “us against the world mentality.” It’s time to bring that back!

Prediction: The Sooners have been pushed into a corner and they have to come out swinging. OU needs this game to save their season and I say they get it. OU 24/UCLA 17

Trying to Get One Back
Troy returns to the scene of the crime where they beat Missouri last season. I don’t see it happening again this year. After a loss last week to New Mexico the Tigers will be out for blood this week, doesn’t look good for the men of Troy.
Prediction: Missouri 45/Troy 21

Don’t Look Now
The Baylor Bears are 2-0 as they head to Army. Baylor should be 3-0 going into conference play after picking up a win at WestPoint.
Prediction: Baylor 13/Army 10

Upset Alert – Pittsburg at Nebraska
How bad has Pittsburg been this year? An embarrassing loss to the Ohio Bobcats sent the Panthers home humbled. In a match-up of former NFL coaches I think there is a very real possibility for an upset here. This just looks like a trap for the Huskers.
Prediction: Pittsburg 24/Nebraska 21

Cream Puff Game of the Week
Sam Houston @ Texas Tech – Wow, do you think the Red Raiders will keep it under 100?
Prediction: Texas Tech 63/Sam Houston 10

Game No One Cares About
I hate to say this but it’s Arkansas State @ OSU
Prediction: No one cares, but it will be nice when the Cowboys finally play a real team on the 1st of October (Colorado).

Other Games of Note
SMU @ Texas A&M – Prediction, A&M 42/SMU 10
Louisiana Tech @ Kansas – Prediction, Kansas 31/ La. Tech 17
Rice @ Texas – Prediction, Texas 63/Rice 3

Teams Off
Colorado - @ Miami 9/24
Iowa State- @ Army 9/23
Kansas State – North Texas 9/24

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Buster's Best

Last weeks results:

Sniff, Sniff, do you smell that? That’s my picks from last week stinking up the blogospher. Buster plowed over me last week, in the picks. I will really have to hunker down and play catch up now.

Game 1 Tennessee @ Pittsburg (NFL) – Buster picked the Steelers to win and I picked them to cover the 7 point spread.
Buster 1-0/Dad 1-0
Game 2 Dallas @ San Diego (NFL) – Buster picked the Chargers and so did I. They were 4.5 favorites and lost the game.
Buster 1-1/Dad 1-1
Game 3 Tulsa @ OU – Buster picked the Sooners and I picked them to cover the 30.5 spread. What was I thinking?
Buster 2-1/Dad 1-2
Game 4 Stanford @ Navy – Buster picked Navy to win and I took the three points they were getting.
Buster 2-2/Dad 1-3
Game 5 Oklahoma State @ Florida Atlantic – Buster picked OSU and I took the 14 points that Florida Atlantic was getting. Unfortunately the Owls had more turnovers than they did points.
Buster 3-2/Dad 1-4

For the season - Buster 5-5/Dad 4-6

This week’s picks.

Game 1, Miami Dolphins @ NY Jets– Buster likes the Jets. I was surprised at Miami’s win over Denver last week and I was surprised at how bad the Jets looked against Kansas City. I’ll take the six points that the Dolphins are getting.
Game 2, Washington Redskins @ Dallas Cowboys – Buster likes the Cowboys and so do I. I will be there in person to watch the Cowboys cover the six point spread.
Game 3, OU @ UCLA – Buster likes the Sooners and I just don’t know. You have to think they will get better at some point. If they lose I don’t think it will be by more than 7. I’ll take OU and the 7 points they are getting.
Game 4, Arkansas State @ Oklahoma State – Buster likes the Cowboys. However, OSU has not beat Division II Montana State or first year Division I Florida Atlantic by 25 and I don’t think they will beat Arkansas State by 25 either. I’ll take the 25 points the Indians are getting.
Game 5, San Diego State @ Ohio State – Buster likes the Buckeyes and so do I. I’ll take the 27 points they are giving to the Aztecs.

No Transfer Rule is the Right Rule

I think in a lot of ways the NCAA does a lot of things wrong, but I have to back them on this one.

AP - Division I basketball and football players from schools closed by Hurricane Katrina will still have to sit out for a year if they transfer to one of the many colleges that have offered admission, NCAA president Myles Brand said Tuesday.
The NCAA said last month that it would bend some rules to help students and schools deal with the hurricane, including letting students compete without attending classes.

But during an appearance at the University of Rhode Island, Brand said the only rule the NCAA would not bend was the one that requires Division I basketball, football and hockey players to sit a one year if they transfer to another Division I school.

In other sports, Division I athletes can transfer and play immediately at another Division I school if they receive a release from the original university.

I know what you are thinking, “My campus is underwater and I’m not for sure if I will get to have a home game again before I graduate, why shouldn’t I be able to transfer without penalty?”

Here is the reason this is the right thing by the NCAA. What keeps Rice, TCU, Houston or any other school from taking an entire football squad? Brand addressed this as athletic looting. Allowing student athletes to transfer without penalty would be the kiss of death on athletic programs already struggling with the decision of how to start over. They simply wouldn’t be able to.

Some coaches at hurricane-affected schools in and around New Orleans had complained to the NCAA that coaches at other schools had tried to raid their teams and recruit their players, NCAA spokesman Wally Renfro said.

The NCAA has eased some other rules, including those prohibiting athletes from taking financial assistance from outside sources, and those that require students to be enrolled full-time at their college and university.

The hurricane has already done enough damage to these programs and the NCAA is trying to prevent them from receiving even more. Very seldom do I applaud the NCAA and say they did the right thing, but it seems to me as if they have in this case.


1 Southern Cal (41)
2 Texas (5)
3 Louisiana State
4 Tennessee
5 Virginia Tech
6 Florida
7 Georgia
8 Ohio State
9 Notre Dame
10 Florida State
11 Louisville
12 Purdue
13 Michigan
14 Miami (Florida)
15 Cal
16 Boston College
17 Georgia Tech
18 Arizona State
19 Iowa
20 Texas Tech
21 Clemson
22 Alabama
23 Oklahoma
24 Iowa State
25 Texas A&M
Also Receiving Votes: Minnesota, Virginia, Fresno State, North Carolina State, Oregon, Auburn, Wisconsin, UCLA, Colorado, Michigan State, UTEP, Utah, South Carolina, Penn State, Toledo, Vanderbilt, West Virginia, TCU, New Mexico, Nebraska,

Total Ballots: 46

Oklahoma City Hornets?

Friday the Associated Press reported that five NBA officials toured Oklahoma City's Ford Center after the city offered to house the Hornets for the season.

The AP reported that mayor Mick Cornett said the league discussed a lease if they decided on playing 41 games in the 19,675-seat facility.

"The NBA is impressed with what we have to offer," Cornett told the AP.

Cornett said Friday that the sale of tickets for Oklahoma and Oklahoma State in Oklahoma City suggest a strong market for a pro team.

"That old image that we had of Oklahoma City as being a market that was only able to support minor-league events is outdated," Cornett told the AP.

Oklahoma City would provide a great home for the Hornets, even if temporary. There are great fans here and there would be no competition, the Hornets would truly have home court, and it would be the closest option of the sites mentioned.

Louisville, Nashville and Kansas City have reportedly shown they would be interested in letting the Hornets use their facilities, too.

Monday, September 12, 2005

My Blog Poll Vote

Here is how I voted this week in the blog poll. There is a big shake-up in the top 10 after the Big 10 tanks it in this week. Gone out of the Top 10 are Michigan, Ohio State and Iowa. New to the Top 10 this week are Florida State, Louisville and Purdue.

Biggest Rise
Notre Dame goes from being unranked to # 12

Biggest Fall
Iowa goes from # 8 to # 25

(Last Week)
1 Southern Cal (1)
2 Texas (2)
3 Tennessee (4)
4 Louisiana State (5)
5 Virginia Tech (6)
6 Florida (9)
7 Georgia (10)
8 Florida State (11)
9 Louisville (12)
10 Purdue (13)
11 Cal (14)
12 Notre Dame (NR)
13 Ohio State (7)
14 Texas Tech (17)
15 Miami (Florida) (16)
16 Michigan (3)
17 Arizona State (15)
18 Boston College (20)
19 Minnesota (24)
20 Georgia Tech (23
21 Texas A&M (21)
22 Alabama (18)
23 Oklahoma (19)
24 Virginia (22)
25 Iowa (8)

Week 1 NFL Roundup

Big Games

Indianapolis Colts at Baltimore Ravens Colts 24/Ravens 7 I’m trying to figure out if the Colts defense was really that good or if the Raven offense was really that bad. Baltimore only managed to score when the game was well in hand. Ravens kicker Matt Stover missed three field goals. The Colts are still my favorite to represent the AFC in the Super Bowl.

Philadelphia Eagles at Atlanta Falcons Falcons 14/Eagles 10 It was Monday Night Footbrawl in Atlanta as the Falcons and the Eagles had to be separated twice before the game even began, resulting in the ejection of Philadelphia’s Jeremiah Trotter and Atlanta’s Kevin Mathis. Atlanta out rushed Philly 200 yards to 51 yards. I like Jim Mora Jr. I think he will be a better coach than his father was. However, we will probably never hear him utter the words, “Diddley Poo.”

Big Upsets

Denver Broncos at Miami Dolphins Dolphins 34/Broncos 10, We all knew that the Dolphins would improve this season, they couldn’t get worse, but they came out and dominated the Broncos. Miami was creative on offense and dominant on defense. The Jets are next on the schedule and they looked anything but impressive against Kansas City. Miami could start 2-0. Three more games until Ricky Williams returns!

New Orleans Saints at Carolina Panthers Saints 23/Panthers 20, I think the Panthers will be pretty good this season and I also think the Saints will struggle. However, how could you not cheer for the Saints on Sunday?

St. Louis Rams at San Francisco 49ers 49ers 28/Rams 25, Wow, what can you say here? Anyone who says they saw this coming is a liar!


Oakland Raiders at New England Patriots Patriots 30/Raiders 20, New England was as impressive as ever on offense and their defense left a few question marks? I say they win their division but don’t make the AFC Championship game.

Worst Game

Chicago Bears at Washington Redskins - Redskins 9/Bears 7, Both teams struggled on offense. The Bears will have a very good defense by the end of the season. Too bad it will take longer for the offense to catch up. Washington could get shut out next week at Dallas.

Roaming Saints

The New Orleans Saints will open up their home season Monday night at the New York Giants. Their remaining seven home games will be played in San Antonio and in Baton Rouge.
Week 4 -- Buffalo (San Antonio, Texas)
Week 6 -- Atlanta (San Antonio, Texas)
Week 8 -- Miami (Baton Rouge, Louisiana)
Week 9 -- Chicago (Baton Rouge, Louisiana)
Week 13 -- Tampa Bay (Baton Rouge, Louisiana)
Week 15 -- Carolina (Baton Rouge, Louisiana)
Week 16 -- Detroit (San Antonio, Texas)

Looking Ahead at Week Two

Big Game

Kansas City Chiefs at Oakland Raiders - The Chiefs have the opportunity to jump on their archrivals early in the season. The Raiders have an improved offense with Lamont Jordan and Randy Moss, so they should be able to score a few points on the Chiefs. The problem is going to be the Raiders defense. They will struggle keeping Kansas City out of the Red Zone.
Prediction: Kansas City 31/Oakland 17

Possible Upset
New England Patriots at Carolina Panthers – The Panthers are better than what they played on Sunday. This will be there chance to show that with the defending world champions coming to town. Look for the Panthers’ defense to try to take control of the game. Should be low-scoring and that will be to Carolina’s advantage.
Prediction: Carolina 17/New England 14

Miami Dolphins
My Dolphins play on the road at the New York Jets who got blasted by the Kansas City Chiefs this past Sunday. I think that Miami’s defense is every bit as good as the Chiefs and should have similar success against the Jets. I also like the creativity of Miami’s offense and I think it will be good enough to win.
Prediction: Miami 17/New York Jets 10

Sooners Make Progress in Win, Still Have a Long Way to Go

The good news is that OU won. Forget the fact that they played Tulsa and forget the fact they didn’t pass in the second half. The Sooners showed some improvement and that is what they had to do. They improved in the area of getting pressure on the quarterback; OU seemed to knock Tulsa QB Paul Smith all over the field on Saturday. They improved in run blocking; Sooner blockers sprung Adrian Peterson for 220 yards and 3 touchdowns. Most importantly they improved in heart. There seemed to be a sense of urgency as OU opened the game and then late in the second half.

What I Liked
I don’t like Rhett Bomar as quarterback. I just don’t get the impression that he is ready to play big-time football, 5-13 – 42 yards, 2 INT’s against Tulsa, but I do like the fact that the Sooners stayed with one quarterback. I am not a fan of playing both quarterbacks and I really feel that is what cost us the TCU game.

Cody Freeby averaged 50 yards a punt and had one of 70 yards. Dang!

Rufus Alexander seriously looked like he was trying to kill someone. Hopefully his nastiness will rub-off on some other players.

Duke Robinson!

Still Work to Be Done
I don’t know if the reshuffling of the offensive line is finished yet, but it needs to be settled before OU goes to UCLA. The line, whoever they are going to be, needs to gel and work as a unit in order to improve. I confident that the coaches recognize this and coach Wilson used the Tulsa game as a scouting opportunity and will use practice this week to put together a solid pass-blocking scheme, hopefully.

The center to quarterback exchange has got to be addressed as well. They tried to move Bomar into the shotgun and there was still a problem.

The passing game overall is in shambles! I hoping, praying, and trusting, that there are offensive schemes that will allow us to utilize the passing game that Chuck Long has not opened the playbook to yet.

Looking Ahead
UCLA is better than they were last season and a lot better than they were two years ago when they came to Norman, they still have trouble defending the run and I believe OU will be able to move the ball on them. However, the Sooners will have to be able to pass in order to win. Look for more on the game Friday in Last Minute Football Notes.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Heisman Performances

Here is how our five Heisman candidates performed over the second weekend of the college football season. They are in order from the most deserving (1) to not in the same league (5).

1. MOST DESERVING – Matt Leinart (QB) USC – Off
Overall Stats - 18-24 332 yards, 3 TD’s, 1 INT.
2. CLOSE SECOND – Vince Young (QB) Texas – 18-29 270 yards, 2 TD’s 2 INT’s, 20 rushes 76 yards.
Overall Stats – 31-46 443 yards, 5 TD’s, 3 INT’s, 27 rushes 125 yards, 1 TD.
3. BACK IN THE HUNT– Adrian Peterson (RB) OU – 32 rushes 220 yards, 3 TD’s, 2 receptions 17yards.
Overall Stats – 54 carries 283 yards, 4 TD’s, 4 receptions 24 yards.
4. ABOVE AVERAGE – Reggie Bush (RB) USC – Off
Overall Stats - 12 carries 86 yards, 2 TD’s, 4 receptions 58 yards.
5. NOT IN THE SAME LEAGUE – Jarod Zabransky (QB) Boise State – 19-36 233 yards 3 TD’s, 9 rushes -3 yards.
Overall Stats – 27-53 303- yards, 3 TD’s, 4 INT’s, 13 rushes 37 yards.

College Football Round-Up, Week Two

Big 10 Takes It on the Chin
The Ohio State/Texas Game was huge for the Big 10ecause it capped off a day that had seen Michigan go down to Notre Dame and Iowa get blown-out by Iowa State. When Vince Young completed his fourth quarter touchdown pass, he also completed the Big 10 freefall. Going into the day the Big 10 had three teams ranked in the top 10. They all lost!

Mac Daddy
Give credit where it is due. Texas coach Mac Brown has been criticized for not being able to win the big one. Not anymore! Brown chose to wait until his Longhorns went to the most difficult environment to win on the road.

Conference Rankings
Here is how I rank the BCS conferences in strength after this weekend.
1. ACC
2. SEC
3. Pac 10
4. Big 12
5. Big 10
6. Big East

Still In the Hunt
Texas saved the Big 12 in the national championship hunt by beating Ohio State and Iowa State could have ended the Bid 10’s chances of a national championship by knocking off Iowa.

Irish Eyes Are SmilingAre you sold on Notre Dame yet? I know they are good but, after watching Pittsburg lose to the Ohio Bobcats you have to wonder how big that win was last week over the Panthers. I guess time will tell. They are sure to move up in the blog poll.

Who’s on Third?
Here’s a good question. Who deserves to be number three LSU, Virginia Tech or Tennessee? Make sure to vote on the opinion poll.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

All On The Line for Texas

This is supposed to be the year it all comes together for the Texas Longhorns. After appearing in their first BCS bowl in January the Texas bandwagon has been growing since Vince Young ran over the Michigan defense one night in January. Sports writers across America and bloggers alike have anointed Texas king of the Big 12 Conference and the only hope for a national title shot. This year’s big game for the Longhorns is not in Dallas, rather it’s in Columbus, OH. It’s not the second weekend in October, it’s the second weekend in September. It’s not against hated foe Oklahoma, it’s against an Ohio State team that they have never played before.

Everyone is saying that this game has Rose Bowl implications and no doubt the winner has the inside track and the loser will be on the outside looking in when it comes to one of those top two spots in the BCS rankings.

I guess this would be a bad time to bring up Mac Brown’s record in big games. It wouldn’t be a good time to mention the fact that he has never even won a conference championship. It probably wouldn’t be appropriate to rehash that he sacrificed a championship season and Major Applewhite to Chris Simms (Gary Barnett and the Colorado Buffs are still thankful for that). Lastly, it may seem wrong to talk about the Longhorns’ five year losing streak to the Oklahoma Sooners.

Well, actually it’s not wrong at all to bring up all of Mac’s shortcomings because a win in Columbus would erase all of it. If the Longhorns beat the Buckeyes it would be one of the greatest redemption stories in college football history. Brown would have finally won the big game when it mattered. He and the Longhorns would be a heavy favorite over the Sooners and that would put them in the driver’s seat to an undefeated season and a Conference Championship. Oh yeah, and a chance to go back to the Rose Bowl where this year’s dream started that night in January.

So, sleep tight tonight Longhorn fans your shot at the big time starts tomorrow night at 7:00 central.

Last Minute Football Notes

Texas @ Ohio State

In order for Texas to win they will have to:
Prove that they are more than a one man show.
Mac Brown will also have to prove that he is capable of winning a big game when the season is on the line.
The Longhorns will have to find out a way to contain Ted Ginn Jr., because he will be all over the field.

If Texas has to rely on Young’s arm and not his feet and if Ginn is running all over the field with the ball it won’t be good for the Longhorns.

In order for Ohio State to win the will have to:
Keep their crowd into the game by making big plays. Texas has never played in an atmosphere like the horseshoe.
Find creative ways to use Ted Ginn Jr. Get him the ball any way possible and let him create big plays.
Force Vince Young to beat them with his arm. Everyone knows what he can do with his legs! If you shut down Young, you shut down Texas.

If Young is able to run and pass the Buckeyes will be done.

My Prediction: Ohio State 34 Texas 28

It may not seem possible that the Sooners can even score 31 points much less cover that kind of spread, but that is what will need to take place Saturday to get people to quit shaking their heads after last weeks upset by TCU. The Sooners will have their second starting QB in two weeks and hopefully an open playbook for Rhett Bomar.

I believe that the OU defense can shutout Tulsa, but the offense will have to score and score a lot to prove to Sooner fans that all hope is not gone. It won’t be good enough to just win, the Sooners will have to win big.

My Prediction: OU 35 Tulsa 3


The Cowboys struggled last week against Montana State before pulling out a 15-10 win. Last night they had to play on the road at Florida Atlantic in Miami. OSU won 23-3, but 20 points where given to them by FAU on turnovers.

I’m not buying the new look Cowboys, just yet. They look solid on defense but their offense is struggling to say the least.

The Red Raiders host Florida International Saturday night and Tech will debut yet another fifth year senior quarterback, their third in three years, in Cody Hodges.

FIU gave Kansas State fits last week before falling, don’t look for the same thing this week as the mad scientist otherwise known as Mike Leach allows Hodges to get comfortable with the offense by throwing for a lot of touchdowns.

My Prediction: Texas Tech 42 – FIU 17

Remember when the Wildcats were upset at home by Marshall two seasons ago? This week is the return game as KSU goes to Huntington to take on the Herd. If you have Kansas State figured out send me an e-mail and explain.

My Prediction: Kansas State 17 Marshall 14

Iowa is coming to town and they need to keep rolling in order to keep the Big 10 media focused on them. This doesn’t bode well for Iowa State who is a solid team, but will just simply be out manned. It could get UGLY!

My Prediction: Iowa 41 – Iowa State 21

The Jayhawks host mighty Appalachian State. Wow, you gotta be proud of that!

My Prediction: Kansas 52 – Appalachian State 7

Samford @ Baylor

My Prediction: No one cares!

New Mexico @ Missouri – My Prediction: Mizzou 45 New Mexico 24
New Mexico State @ Colorado – My Prediction: Colorado 24 New Mexico State 13

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Big Losses for the Big 12

Oklahoma was the crown jewel of the Big 12 Conference. The Sooners had appeared in four conference championship games in the past five years and made three BCS championship appearances in the past five years. Then came Saturday when a loss to TCU made OU the talk of the town for all the wrong reasons.

Texas A&M was supposed to be a team on the rise. The Aggies under Coach Dennis Franchione were supposed to have a Heisman candidate in quarterback Reggie McNeal and contend for the conference championship. Then came Saturday night when the Aggies couldn’t stop Clemson on eight consecutive running plays that got the Tigers to the A&M 25 yard line and set up the game winning field goal.

Both losses were unbelievable and both losses left the Big 12 with two of its big teams having opening day blemishes. In the conference power rankings the Big 12 is well behind the ACC, SEC, Big 10 and Pac 10.

Legitimate questions are being raised about OU’s offense and the coaching blunders at A&M. The Sooners offense was very inept against TCU and a coaching mistake cost the Aggies their game against Clemson. Franchione chose not to go for two on the Aggies final touchdown which would have given them a three point lead rather than two. The Aggies lost 25-24.

No doubt this was not one but two black eyes for the Big 12, which puts more pressure on Texas to come away from the horseshoe with a win over Ohio State. If the Longhorns lose, then the Big 12 is out of the national championship race in only the second week of the season.

Buster's Best

Game 1 Minnesota @ Tulsa – Buster picked the Gophers who won 41 – 10 and I took the 15.5 points that Tulsa was getting. Buster 1-0, Dad 0-1
Game 2 TCU @ OU – Buster picked the Sooners and I took TCU and the 26.5 points. TCU 17 – OU 10. Buster 1-1, Dad 1-1.
Game 3 Miami (Fl) @ Florida State – Buster took Miami and I picked the 3 point underdog Seminoles to win outright. Florida State 10 – Miami 7. Buster 1-2, Dad 2-1.
Game 4 Colorado State @ Colorado – Buster picked the Rams and I said that the Buffs would cover the 7.5 spread. Colorado 31 – Colorado State 28. Buster 1-3, Dad 2-2.
Game 5 Florida International @ Kansas State – Buster picked Kansas State to win and I took the 33 points that Florida International was getting. Kansas State 35 – Florida International 21. Buster 2-3, Dad 3-2.

OVERALL RESULTS: Buster 2-3, Dad 3-2.

Game 1 Tennessee @ Pittsburg – Buster likes the Steelers and I agree. I think Pittsburg covers the 7 point spread.
Game 2 Dallas @ San Diego – Buster likes the Chargers and I agree, again. I think the Chargers cover the 4.5 point spread.
Game 3 Tulsa @ OU – Buster likes his Sooners and I agree yet again. I say this week OU covers the 30.5 point spread in a redemption blow-out.
Game 4 Stanford @ Navy – Buster likes Navy and once again I agree. The Midshipmen are a 3 point dog and I say they win outright.
Game 5 Oklahoma State @ Florida Atlantic – Buster likes the Cowboys and I’m not fully on board here. I’ll take the 14 points that FAU is getting and toss up UPSET WARNING.

Akim Millington Leaves, Again

It's being reported on Gaylord Memorial Gathering that Akim Millington and Brandon Keith have both left the Sooners football team again. I'm speechless!

Blog Poll Week 2

1 Southern Cal (45)
2 Texas
3 Michigan
4 Louisiana State
5 Ohio State
6 Tennessee
7 Georgia
8 Virginia Tech
9 Iowa
10 Florida
11 Florida State
12 Louisville
13 Purdue
14 Miami (Florida)
15 Arizona State
16 Cal
17 Notre Dame
18 Boston College
19 Georgia Tech
20 Oklahoma
21 Texas Tech
22 Alabama
23 Texas A&M
24 Virginia
25 Fresno State
Also Receiving Votes: Clemson(1.9), TCU(1.8), North Carolina State(1.8), Auburn(1.7), Minnesota(1.6), Oregon(1.1), Colorado(0.9), Utah(0.8), UCLA(0.4), UTEP(0.4), Penn State(0.3), Wisconsin(0.3), Boise State(0.2), South Carolina(0.2), Iowa State(0.1), West Virginia(0.1), Southern Miss(0.1), Michigan State(0.1), Toledo(0.1), Arizona(0.1), Oregon State(0.0), Nebraska(0.0),

Total Ballots: 46

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Baseball Q&A with Tom Gatto of Sporting News

I had the opportunity to do a five question baseball Q&A with Tom Gatto, Senior Editor at Sporting News. Here is his take on the final month of the regular season.

My Opinion on Sports: What is the biggest surprise in baseball going into the final month of the season?

Tom Gatto: The biggest surprise, to me, is that the Nationals are hanging tough in the NL wild-card race. I don't see them winning it (see below), but they didn't fade away like I expected them to once they surrendered the division lead to the Braves in July.

My Opinion on Sports: Can you give us a World Series prediction? Who will play and who will win?

Tom Gatto: Right now, I'm going with a Cards-Red Sox rematch.

My Opinion on Sports: Who do you think will win the NL Cy Young?

Tom Gatto: Chris Carpenter of the Cardinals, barely over Roger Clemens and Dontrelle Willis.

My Opinion on Sports: Who do you think wins the AL Wild Card? NL Wild Card?

Tom Gatto: AL- Yankees over the Indians in a close race; NL- Astros over the East teams, because of their pitching and favorable schedule.

My Opinion on Sports: Is there any hope for the Kansas City Royals (My team)?

Tom Gatto: Yes, but the results won't be seen for at least a couple more years. The young pitchers need to mature and positional prospects such as Billy Butler, Justin Huber and (maybe) Alex Gordon need to get some big-league at-bats.

*Bonus Question: Have you been to My Opinion on Sports?

Tom Gatto: Yes, I have. I liked the presentation and the content.

You can check out Sporting News online at, you can also use the link from My Opinion on Sports. Thanks Tom for your input.