Thursday, October 30, 2008

CBS Sports Blog Poll

You saw how I voted earlier in the week. Here's the finished product. BlogPoll Top 25
No.SchoolPoints per blogStandard DeviationDelta
3Penn State23.30.70
6Texas Tech19.72.12
7Southern California19.11.8-1
9Oklahoma State17.72.3-4
11Boise State14.61.82
13Ohio State12.02.6-3
16Ball State8.64.03
18Florida State8.13.28
20Brigham Young5.73.83
21North Carolina5.43.35
22Michigan State5.03.14
25South Florida1.41.9-10

Others Receiving Votes: California (1.2); Connecticut (1.1); West Virginia (0.8); Georgia Tech (0.6); Virginia (0.5); Oregon State (0.5); Pittsburgh (0.3); Iowa (0.1); Notre Dame (0.1); Kansas (0.1); Boston College (0.1); Louisville (0.1); South Carolina (0.1); Central Michigan (0.0); Duke (0.0); Air Force (0.0); Virginia Tech (0.0); Troy (0.0); Miami (Fla.) (0.0); Fresno State (0.0); Cincinnati (0.0)

Thunder Silenced In OKC Debut

(Photo by Garrett W. Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images)

The crowd was set and the party was on as Oklahoma City anticipated it's long awaited debut as an NBA market. Fans showed up to Bricktown early to eat, celebrate the day and drink in the atmosphere of opening night for the Oklahoma City Thunder. They brought that electric atmosphere from the streets into the Ford Center for the historical tip off and then it was silenced by what could be described, at best, as horrific basketball.

The Thunder started 2-for-12 from the floor and never led in the game. Kevin Durant was 0-for the first half and the Milwaukee Bucks led 50-35 at the half. If only the team had been able to match the intensity of the crowd.

“I thought the atmosphere was definitely great,” Thunder forward Chris Wilcox said. “We had a lot of fans here, fan support, and I think if we get that night in and night out, a lot of games that we struggle, down the stretch we will come out with.”

It’s always good when a team has great things to say about the crowd it just usually works better when the crowd has great things to say about team as well. This team has a new home and new fans (19,136 in attendance) but the same level of play we saw from them in Seattle. They struggle scoring from the floor (43% shooting, 16% from three) and they struggle with ball control (19 turnovers). Mix all of that together and you get a 98-87 home opening loss.

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Monday, October 27, 2008

CBS Sports BlogPoll Ballot 10-27-08: I’m Busy Edition

There were a lot of great games this weekend but not really a lot of upsets so to speak. Because of a busy schedule I’ve got to make this short but please feel free to post any comments or questions below. I didn’t change anything in my top 9 even with Oklahoma State losing. I didn’t really see the Cowboys deserving to drop after the performance they had in Austin. So here is the way I’m voting this week unless you can change my mind by Wednesday.

1Texas - Won 28-24 over Oklahoma State--
2Penn State - Won 13-6 over Ohio State--
3Alabama - Won 29-9 over Tennessee--
4Florida - Won 63-5 over Kentucky--
5Georgia - Won 52-38 over LSU--
6Texas Tech - Won 63-21 over Kansas--
7Oklahoma - Won 58-35 at Kansas State --
8Southern Cal - Won 17-10 over Arizona--
9Oklahoma State - Lost 28-24 at Texas--
10Tulsa - Won 49-19 over Central Florida 2
11Boise State - Won 33-16 at San Jose State 3
12TCU - Won 54-7 against Wyoming 4
13Utah - IDLE--
14Ohio State - Lost 13-6 to Penn State 4
15Ball State - Won 38-16 over Eastern Michigan 6
16Missouri - Won 58-0 over Colorado 6
17Brigham Young - Won 42-35 against UNLV--
18LSU - Lost 52-28 to Georgia 7
19Florida State - Won 30-20 over Virginia Tech 4
20Minnesota - Won 17-6 at Purdue 5
21Oregon - Won 54-20 at Arizona State 5
22Michigan State - Won 35-21 at Michigan 4
23Maryland - Won 27-24 over North Carolina State 3
24North Carolina - Won 45-24 over Boston College 2
25South Florida - Lost 24-20 at Louisville 10

Dropped Out: Pittsburgh (#18), Kansas (#19), Georgia Tech (#20), Northwestern (#24).

Saturday, October 25, 2008

College Football Game Threads

Lots of big games on slate today in college football. That means there are going to be tons of opinions out there before, during and after the games. Let us know who you are watching, what is going on and what you are thinking by starting a game thread in the forum.

NCAA Football Games of Interest

11:00 - #8 Texas Tech at #19 Kansas – This game could be a shootout which would be fun to watch.
2:30 - #7 Oklahoma State at #1 Texas – This is the “game of the week” but history tells us to expect a lopsided affair.
2:30 - #9 Georgia at #11 LSU – One of these teams will be out of the BCS hunt after this game.
7:00 - #3 Penn State at #10 Ohio State – In my opinion this is the true game of the week.

Active Game Threads

Friday, October 24, 2008

Write Hundreds Of Words Per Minute

Occasionally you come across something that you think is really neat but someone else can explain it a lot better than you can. Well, this is one of those times. I’d like to introduce you to Brett Bumeter from Softduit Media. Check out the video and then read Brett’s thoughts.

Here is another great video review by Lisa, who coincidently writes the blog Lisa Reviews. She writes about how she can write at 150 words per minute with Dragon NaturallySpeaking.

I think one of the key takeaways from her video, the key insight that is, is that she is able to write a lot more in those spare moments of time that she has while she's doing other things. Sometimes it's great to multitask, but it's even more important to be able to accomplish useful goals in those spare two or three or four minute pockets of time that we all experience throughout the day.
Dragon NaturallySpeaking 10 Standard
With Dragon NaturallySpeaking a four minute pocket of time can translate into 600 words! That could be three or four e-mails or one or two long blog articles if you're a blogger like Lisa.

For just $99 you can get started with Dragon NaturallySpeaking and have it trained in running in about seven minutes. The software with version 10 is simply amazing.

I have been writing about Dragon NaturallySpeaking for almost 2 years now. I have been able to type at rates of up to 167 words per minute with Dragon NaturallySpeaking. That speed was clocked while I was taking a typing test, but even in practical situations when I factor in not only the time it takes to type, but the time that it also takes to edit the words I typed, the end result is that I can still achieve about 100 words a minute, INCLUDING editing time! J

That is extremely fast, and the inclusion of editing time, speaks to the advances that you can see in version 10 as compared to older versions such as version 8 or version 9. It's a lot easier to edit on the fly with Dragon NaturallySpeaking 10.

So if you're looking for a practical tool for your home office, for your writing or blog work, or even just to keep up with e-mail in your spare time, Dragon NaturallySpeaking can give you the power to write at 150 words a minute for a price that starts at $99. Heck, I think I paid that much almost for my last keyboard so that I wouldn't pound my fingers to death. :-)

Brett Bumeter
Softduit Media
PS this article includes about 376 words that I wrote with Dragon NaturallySpeaking 10. It took me about 3 1/2 minutes to write and edit this article, which is just a little bit better than 100 words per minute and that includes editing time.

Type at $150 Words Per Minute for $99!

Have Video Skills?

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Blog Poll Thinks Oregon State Is Better Than Texas

Alright, let’s see if we can figure this out. You’ve got two football teams (Team A and Team B), each having only one loss. Team A lost to the team who is currently ranked #1 in the country and Team B to a team that is currently one game over .500. Team A has wins over teams that are currently ranked #15 and #19 while Team B has a win over the team that is currently ranked #10. Which team deserves to be ranked higher? If you answered team A then you are smarter than the average Blog Poll voter and if you answered Team B…well…I guess you are qualified to be a Blog Poll voter.

There is no excuse for USC to be ranked higher than Oklahoma. I know that some are going to try but you jut can’t justify it and those who voted that way should go sit in the corner and think about it. BlogPoll Top 25

No.SchoolPoints per blogStandard DeviationDelta
3Penn State23.20.80
5Oklahoma State20.12.21
6Southern California19.71.91
8Texas Tech17.53.40
10Ohio State16.31.63
13Boise State13.12.21
15South Florida9.23.26
18Georgia Tech7.23.48
19Ball State5.74.04
22Boston College4.53.24
23Brigham Young4.23.5-13
Others Receiving Votes: Florida State (2.4); Virginia Tech (1.3); Cincinnati (0.9); Michigan State (0.8); North Carolina (0.4); Vanderbilt (0.3); Oregon (0.3); Arizona (0.2); Wake Forest (0.2); California (0.2); Maryland (0.2)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

World Series Preview

I think you’d have to go back to the 2005 World Series featuring the Chicago White Sox and the Houston Astros to find a World Series with as little star power as what we find this year. That doesn’t mean that we aren’t in for a good series nor that there won’t be big plays by big time players.

The Tampa Bay Rays are in the series for the first time in the history of their franchise and the Phillies haven’t been since 1993 when Toronto’s Joe Carter ended it in game six with a walk-off homerun. Both teams are fundamentally sound and bring their own unique brand of play to Major League Baseball’s biggest stage.

The Rays are ahead of Philadelphia in post-season batting average (.268/.259), slugging percentage (.508/.431) and runs scored (64/40). By looking at the stats you’d want to give the offensive advantage to Tampa Bay but the Phillies have Ryan Howard, Chase Utley and Pat Burrell all of whom have a big bat and can change the game in one swing.
Advantage: Tampa Bay

There isn’t much that separates these two staffs. Since the beginning of the playoffs the Phillies have the advantage in ERA (3.19/3.52) and the Rays have the edge in strikeouts (85/74) but the two teams are dead even in WHIP (WHIP stands for walks + hits divided by innings pitched) at 1.32. What is ironic is that pitching may have already settled the series. Tampa Bay’s Scott Kazmir was the winning pitcher of the All-Star Game that awarded home field advantage to the American League while the Phillies Brad Lidge was credited for the loss.
Advantage: Even

Both teams pride themselves on playing great defense. You could make the argument that Tampa’s defense was the reason that the Rays lost games 5 and 6 of the ALCS but you could also argue that it was Boston’s incredible knack for pulling out post season wins. Tampa Bay has given up more runs in the post-season than Philadelphia has (41/29) and that is the most telling stat of all.
Advantage: Philadelphia

We’ve waited all season for Tampa Bay to fold. At first we thought that they wouldn’t be able to hang around until the All-Star break. Then after the break we just knew that they would fold. When it was evident that they were bound for the post-season we thought it would be as the Wild Card and not a division champion. In their first time to ever make the playoffs we thought that the White Sox would get them and then everyone (including me) thought that Boston was going to win Game 7 of the ALCS. This is clearly a team of destiny and they aren’t going anywhere.
Prediction: Tampa Bay in 6

Monday, October 20, 2008

CBS Sports Blog Poll Ballot - 10/20/08

Here’s how I’ll be voting this week. Let me know where you think I’m off track.

1Texas - The Longhorns turned the “game of the week” into a snore fest. How in the world did this team fly so far under the radar? --
2Penn State - The Nittany Lions struggled early against Michigan but got rolling and cruised to a 46-17 win over Michigan.--
3Alabama - The Tide continues to flirt with disaster but remain undefeated after a 24-20 win over Mississippi. --
4Florida - IDLE--
5Georgia - A 24-14 win over Vanderbilt leaves only the Bulldogs and Florida as the one loss teams in the SEC Eastern division. 1
6Texas Tech - Like Penn State, the Red Raiders got off to a slow start but still run ruled Texas A&M 43-25. 1
7Oklahoma - After playing three ranked teams in four weeks, Oklahoma now gets unranked Kansas State, Nebraska and Texas A&M but two of the three games are on the road. 1
8Southern Cal - Does the Pac 10 know that the rest of the college football world is laughing at them? 1
9Oklahoma State - We thought Texas was under the radar. How about these guys? The Cowboys are 7-0 and outscoring opponents by an average of 26 points. 1
10Ohio State - The Buckeyes were more than impressive in their 45-7 thrashing of nationally ranked Michigan State. 1
11LSU - A poor second quarter performance nearly cost the Tigers. 1
12Tulsa - The media is just now ranking Tulsa in the Top 25! 1
13Utah - The Utes travel to New Mexico this weekend and then will have a Top 25 match up when they host TCU the following week. 3
14Boise State - It doesn’t look like the Broncos will be challenged this season which puts them in the running (along with Tulsa & Utah) to be BCS Busters. 3
15South Florida - After suffering their first loss of the season earlier this month to Pitt the Bulls bounced back with a dominating performance over Syracuse. 3
16TCU - The Frogs should have never been bounced from the Top 25. Their only loss so far this season is to Oklahoma. 10
17Brigham Young - The Cougars were humbled by TCU but still remain a very solid team. 12
18Pittsburgh - Panthers followed their victory over previously unbeaten South Florida with a 42-21 win over Navy. 8
19Kansas - The Jayhawks were able to stand toe-to-toe with Oklahoma for a little more than a half. They could be the best team in the Big 12 North. 4
20Georgia Tech - After their 21-17 win over Clemson the Yellow Jackets stand at 6-1 and could be the top team in the ACC’s Coastal division. 6
21Ball State - IDLE--
22Missouri - After being embarrassed twice on national television in two weeks the Chase Daniel hype machine should be dead. 8
23Florida State - I can’t believe that I’m ranking the Seminoles again but they do deserve it. 3
24Northwestern - Purdue made a good bounce back team for the Wildcats. 2
25Minnesota - IDLE--

Dropped Out: Michigan State (#19), Vanderbilt (#20), North Carolina (#22), Virginia Tech (#23), Wake Forest (#24).

Friday, October 17, 2008

New Post Season Same Red Sox

It seems that the worst place an opposing team can have the Boston Red Sox is on the brink of elimination. Tampa Bay is learning that lesson the hard way. After dominating Boston in games two, three and four as well as the fist seven innings of game five and that’s when Boston came alive starting with a single by Dustin Pedroia, followed by a three-run homer by David Ortiz. Before the night was over Boston would sneak away with an 8-7 victory that would have the baseball world thinking, “Here we go again!”

The Red Sox are certainly no strangers to comebacks. In 2004, they became the only major league team to rally from a 3-0 postseason deficit by beating the New York Yankees in the ALCS and then last year, they overcame a 3-1 hole against Cleveland in the ALCS.

Now Tampa has two games at home to send the defending world champions packing but they had better do it in game six. If Boston pushes this series to a seventh game I don’t think there is a person outside the state of Florida who would pick the Rays.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Checking The Facts From Wednesday’s Presidential Debate

Non-Sports Post!

This may be a bit of a surprise to you but our candidates for president weren’t completely truthful in their final debate on Wednesday night. I know that the knowledge of politicians not being completely honest with the American public may be disturbing, because politicians never do stuff like that, but someone has to hold them accountable. In my opinion, Obama was worse because he seemed to be even more deceptive and willing to mislead people. Here are some examples:

OBAMA: "Every dollar that I've proposed, I've proposed an additional cut, so that it matches."

FACT: The bipartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget estimates that his programs would add $281 billion to the deficit at the end of his first term. The analysis includes Obama's proposals for saving money.

OBAMA: "One hundred percent, John, of your ads — 100 percent of them — have been negative."

FACT: The statement is true when it comes to McCain's current commercial spots. But by saying McCain's ads "have been" 100 percent negative, Obama ventures into misleading territory. McCain is currently running all negative ads, according to a study by the University of Wisconsin-Madison. But he has run a number of positive ads during the campaign.

OBAMA: "I want to provide a tax cut for 95 percent of working Americans, 95 percent."

FACT: Obama constantly says this. But the independent Tax Policy Center says his plan cuts taxes for 81.3 percent of all households in 2009.

MCCAIN: "Sen. Obama, as a member of the Illinois state Senate, voted in the Judiciary Committee against a law that would provide immediate medical attention to a child born in a failed abortion. He voted against that."

OBAMA: "If it sounds incredible that I would vote to withhold lifesaving treatment from an infant, that's because it's not true."

FACT: As a state senator, Obama opposed three legislative efforts, in 2001, 2002 and 2003, to give legal protections to any aborted fetus that showed signs of life. The 2003 measure was virtually identical to a bill President Bush signed into law in 2002 — a bill that passed before Obama was in the U.S. Senate, but one that Obama said he would have supported. The state of Illinois already had a law to protect aborted fetuses born alive and considered able to survive. Among those opposed to the state effort was the Illinois State Medical Society, which argued that the bill would interfere with the doctor-patient relationship and expand civil liability for doctors. Critics said the proposed legislation would have undermined the landmark Supreme Court case on abortion, Roe v. Wade, in ways the federal law would not.

OBAMA: Said he would be "completely supportive" of late-term abortion restrictions "as long as there's an exception for the mother's health and life."

FACT: Obama leaves himself a lot of latitude in this answer. A woman's "health" has been so broadly interpreted that it can include conditions, including psychological conditions, that are difficult to diagnose or prove. Anti-abortion advocates say that makes the ban meaningless, because it leaves too much subjective judgment in the equation.

OBAMA: "We can cut the average family's premium by $2,500 a year."

FACT: If that sounds like a straight-ahead promise to lower health insurance premiums, it isn't. Obama hopes that by spending $50 billion over five years on electronic medical records and by improving access to proven disease management programs, among other steps, consumers will end up saving money. He uses an optimistic analysis to suggested cost reductions in national health care spending could amount to the equivalent of $2,500 for a family of four. Many economists are skeptical those savings can be achieved, but even if they are, it's not a certainty that every dollar would be passed on to consumers in the form of lower premiums.

I don’t know about you but I see deliberate attempts by Obama to deceive the American people by promising things he can’t deliver (cuts for taxes and in the national debt and savings for health insurance) and protecting his true character (voting against the protection of infants who are victims of failed abortions and trying to play both sides of the abortion issue when he is clearly pro-choice) as well as lying about campaign ads by his opponents.

I know there were some mistatments by McCain Wednesay night as well because, let’s face it, he does have a tendency to inflate numbers when it comes to money spent on foreign oil, he refers to the percentage of payroll businesses would have to pay towards the costs of Obama’s public insurance plan a “fine” and as much as I am all for finding alternative fuels I don’t see us eliminating our dependence on foreign oil by building nuclear power plants any time in the next 20 years.

However, that said, McCain doesn’t have to protect his reputation and character with lies nor do I believe that he is holding out empty promises in front of me to gain my vote. Just some thoughts I wanted to pass along.

Facts and quotes sourced by CALVIN WOODWARD and JIM KUHNHENN, Associated Press Writers

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

CBS Sports Blog Poll Goes With The Longhorns #1

The bloggers agree with the major media polls that the Texas Longhorns should be the #1 team in the country. After losing 45-35 to the Longhorns Saturday, the previously top ranked Oklahoma Sooners dropped to #5 which is one spot ahead of the Coaches Poll and a spot behind the AP.

Afer getting blown out by Florida the bloggers drop LSU to #15 which is one spot behind the coahes and two spots behind the AP. The Missouri Tigers, another loser on Saturday, wasdropped to #11 by the bloggers which is on par with the AP and two spots ahead of the coaches. BlogPoll Top 25

No.SchoolPoints per blogStandard DeviationDelta
3Penn State23.10.73
6Oklahoma State19.52.610
7Southern California19.02.60
8Texas Tech17.83.20
10Brigham Young14.54.7-1
13Ohio State13.42.71
14Boise State11.73.51
16Virginia Tech8.83.61
18Michigan State7.53.22
19North Carolina7.43.12
20Wake Forest5.72.92
21South Florida5.23.7-2
23Ball State3.53.72
Others Receiving Votes: Pittsburgh (2.0); Georgia Tech (1.4); TCU (1.1); Minnesota (0.8); Florida State (0.5); Cincinnati (0.2); Connecticut (0.2); Boston College (0.1); South Carolina (0.1); Oregon (0.1); Northwestern (0.1); Western Michigan (0.0)

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

NFL Commissioner Benches Cowboys Pacman

Stating that an altercation involving Dallas Cowboys cornerback Pacman Jones was a continuation of “a disturbing pattern of behavior and clearly inconsistent with the conditions I set for your continued participation in the NFL” Roger Goodell has suspended Jones for at least four weeks. Jones was reinstated just six weeks ago following a 17-month suspension for troubles when he was a member of the Tennessee Titans.

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones refused to take action on the incident proving the theory that the only people who will be upset by this move are the ones who have something on the line when it comes to Pacman. Jones represents a lifestyle that many try to emulate by living with no boundaries or accountability. He represents hope for a depleted Dallas secondary. For those reasons some fans will be up in arms over the decision to suspend him.

Jones also represents everything that is wrong with third, fourth and fifth chances and he may have run out of his nine NFL lives. Commissioner Goodell will determine Pacman’s fate after the Cowboys play at Washington on November 16th. If you want to get mad about this try getting mad a Jerry Jones for signing a guy who had a proven track record of being a thug above all else. No one in the Dallas organization should claim to be surprised by this because it is what Jones has been doing since his college days.

How about this, why not get mad at Pacman? He’s the one who has shown to be selfish and has put himself above the team by going out drinking and fighting.

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Monday, October 13, 2008

CBS Sports BlogPoll Ballot 10-13-08- Longhorns Take Top Spot

Here's how I'm voting this week and my logic behind the selections. Feel free to let me know your thoughts because my mind doesn't have to be totally made up until Wednesday.


Texas - Longhorns beat the #1 team in the country staking their claim to the top spot.


Penn State - 48-7 win at Wisconsin establishes PSU at the best team in the Big 10.


Alabama - IDLE


Florida - The Gators are back in the race after their 51-21 thrashing of LSU.


Brigham Young - A 21-3 win over New Mexico keeps the Cougars rising.


Georgia - The Bulldogs weren't overly impressive in their 26-14 win over Tennessee but were lucky in the failings of teams ranked ahead of them.


Texas Tech - The Red Raiders didn't lose so they won't fall but they did struggle against unranked Nebraska with a 37-31 overtime win.


Oklahoma - The Red River Rivalry was a great game but OU falls seven spots the loss and not being able to run the ball.


Southern Cal - Shut out win over Arizona State doesn't impress me.


Oklahoma State - The Cowboys 28-23 win at Missouri was the story of the weekend.


Ohio State - A 16-3 win at Purdue wasn't impressive enough to move up.


LSU - If a loss wasn't bad enough for the Tigers a 30 point loss drops them all the way out of the Top 10.


Tulsa - Only beating SMU by 6 wasn't impressive at all.


Missouri - Why am I dropping the Tigers 10 spots? Because they looked totally inept against Oklahoma State.


Kansas - The Jayhawks 30-14 win over a Colorado team that has no offense bumps them up one spot.


Utah - The Utes totally dominated but it was only Wyoming.


Boise State - The Broncos won 24-7 on the road at Southern Miss. That'll earn them two spots.


South Florida - IDLE


Michigan State - A 17 point win over previously unbeated Northwestern earns MSU two spots.


Vanderbilt - An ugly 17-14 loss at Mississippi State has Vandy on my watch list for possibly dropping out next week.


Ball State - The Cardinals continue to climb. Their latest victim was Westen Kentucky who fell 24-7 at home.


North Carolina - The Tar Heels held off Notre Dame 29-24 and make their way back on my ballot.


Virginia Tech - IDLE


Wake Forest - The 12-7 win over Clemson was ugly but good enough to get WF back in my Top 25.


Minnesota - All hail the 6-1 Gophers for taking out Illinois and making their debut on my ballot.


Dropped Out: Auburn (#20), Wisconsin (#22), Northwestern (#24).