SOS Trash Talk, College and Pro

So, having been completely bullied into this by our own beloved Roving Reporter, the one and only Rosalind, here we go.

Okay, the most “urgent” thing this weekend is the conference championships and seeding in the NCAA. Yes, the football playoff thing, the latest variation anyway, is supremely important. Or not. As much as the “final four” seem to be already identified, and as much as all the little Junior Nate Silver’s on ESPN and Fox try to dilly dally differently, it all seems rather set, save for a truly unexpected upset, and the Pac-12 seems the only real shot at that.

Starts tonight with Washington versus CU. A while back I was a graduate student at Boulder. They could barely beat Drake, much less a college with a real football team. I loved CU games, they were all in the daytime, which was new to me coming from ASU, and they had copious liquor on sale in the stadium, also new to me. Their team was shit. Literally lost to Drake. Who subsequently disbanded their football team, as I recall, because it was horrible. The football games were a riot at Folsom Field, even if the Buffs always lost.

Fast forward to where we are tonight. Washington and CU are tied at 7 in the second quarter. I buy a tough Husky win, but we shall see.

And, onward we go to the other conference championship games, to the extent they matter when the decision is in the hands of experts like – wait a minute WHAT THE HELL – genuine war criminals like Condi Rice. And, no, the current Trump fondness for other genuine war criminals like Henry Kissinger does not help my mood at being reminded of Condi Rice.

Okay, sorry, Washington is now clobbering Colorado, and I am guilty of having been watching that instead of cartaging the Trash.

So, in the “other”, bowl games past the PAC, which appears over, here are some predictions and results:

Western Michigan joined Alabama as the only notable undefeated team in college football. Listen, WMU may not be the Crimson Tide, but don’t sleep on what they have done this year, it is a great story.

In the Bedlam game, Oklahoma State and the Boomer Sooners are both 9-2 and on a bit of a roll. Oklahoma looks to be the better bet, but it is hard to bet on a Bob Stoops team when anything is on the line. Don’t feel good, but will take the Cowboys in an upset.

Baylor versus West Virginia…seriously, who cares? Actually, I do. Because of the jackass perfidy of Art Briles and Ken Starr, screw Baylor. That supposedly religious institution can rot for what they have done over many years.

Florida v. Alabama is…sorry Jim White…as big a mismatch as it looks like. Love to be wrong on that one!! Hard to see how Virginia Tech can knock off Clemson, and I do not think they will, but that seems to be the only possible upset in Saturday’s games. Wisconsin at Penn State is also nowhere near clear, but likely does not matter for the playoff grouping. The totally amazing thing is that neither Ohio State nor Harbaugh’s Khaki whiners are in the actual B1G championship game, in spite of both inveterate historical Rose Bowl game losers dominating the inane discussion on ESPN in the last week.

So, it is over and the Huskies of Washington have dispatched the surprisingly pesky and bullish Buffaloes of Colorado. Saturday ought be great!

In the Pros: Gronk is down. That is a HUGE deal for the Pats. Maybe not Brady gone level, but close. Gronk, in games and situations when it counts, is THE go to, cannot be dealt with guy, for Tom Brady and the Patriots. Martellus Bennett will be there, but is far from perfectly healthy too. The Pats, along with the Rayduhs, are still the class of the AFC. Pittsburgh can still be scary in the playoffs, but they really do not seem to be themselves this year. Injuries suck when they overcome good teams.

In the NFC, I made a joke yesterday to Marcy that the Packers were coming for the Kittehs. It was taken more seriously than I intended, but that may be an indication of how unaccustomed the Lions are to being in the lead. I actually have always kind of liked Fatty Matty Stafford, and he is better than you think, but he is not Aaron Rodgers. The NFC Norske is, along with the NFC East, the fascinating division to watch down the stretch. Seattle may challenge for the actual Championship berth in the Super Bowl, but until then, there is a great battle going on in the East and Norske. And do NOT sleep on Lemon Sucking Face Eli Manning, he and the Gents are quietly having one of those kind of years.

In the AFC pros, the Chefs at the Dirty Birds ought be interesting. In an actual playoff game, I’d be inclined to take the Chefs to cook, but this weekend and through end of the regular season, I’ll take the Falcons.

Lions at Saints, Gents at Stillers, Bucs at Bolts are all you could hope for. I’ll take the Kittehs (but am NOT sure about this, the Second Line is strong in NOLA), Stillers and Bolts respectively. No, I do not think the Pats will have an issue with the Rams, even without Gronk, nor do I think the Raiders will have a problem with the Bills in the Black Hole.

Welp, that is it for this weekend’s Trash. Nico Rosberg SHOCKED THE WORLD by announcing his retirement from F1 Circus so quickly after his Drivers’ Championship for Mercedes. Honestly, I was almost as stunned as everybody else. Kind of. But also remember Nico’s father, Kiki, obtusely mentioned the possibility before the Abu Dhabi finale. Either way, it is what it is and Nico looks comfortably retired. I say put Alonso in the other Mercedes so that a truly great driver can eat Lewis Hamilton’s whiny ass. Verstappen would work too, but, really, Alonso is still the best driver in the Circus, and deserves to go out with equipment as good as he is. Music by Aerosmith, Get Your Wings on.

Bmaz is a rather large saguaro cactus in the Southwestern Sonoran desert. A lover of the Constitution, law, family, sports, food and spirits. As you might imagine, a bit prickly occasionally. Bmaz has attended all three state universities in Arizona, with both undergraduate and graduate degrees from Arizona State University, and with significant post-graduate work (in physics and organic chemistry, go figure) at both the University of Colorado in Boulder and the University of Arizona. Married, with both a lovely child and a giant Sasquatch dog. Bmaz has been a participant on the internet since the early 2000’s, including active participation in the precursor to Emptywheel, The Next Hurrah. Formally joined the Emptywheel blog as an original contributing member at its founding in 2007. Bmaz grew up around politics, education, sports and, most significantly, cars; notably around Formula One racing and Concours de Elegance automobile restoration and showing. Currently lives in the Cactus Patch with his lovely wife and beast of a dog, and practices both criminal and civil trial law.
43 replies
  1. bloopie2 says:

     
    Well, I don’t know crap about F1, so that’s the topic I’ll weigh in on (reportage at its best.)  Anyhow, given that Rosberg apparently came close the previous two years (I did read one article on this, come on) but ultimately lost to a dominant force for those two years, what are the chances that he will win the Driver’s Championship again?  Low, I’d guess.  So maybe this really IS his peak, maybe he doesn’t have I-am–a-many-year-lord blood coursing through his veins?  Nice guy reputations will only take you so far, after all.  And how many drivers make it well past age 35 without serious injury?  Or, maybe he’s actually got brains enough to do something other than turn left-right-left for ninety minutes (not like the rest of us.)  So, I ask, where were all you F1 aficionados with your pollings and predictions on this “shock” move (I love how the Brits use that word as an adjective instead of the American/English “surprise” noun/adjective) (and I love how an English-language translation of a German language sentence goes on for two commercials before you get to the subject/verb/object/whatever and you can finally understand what they are talking about).  You’s was nowhere to be found, it seems.  Ready to quit the 538 club, now and after your 11/8 debacle?

  2. Jim White says:

    Yeah, at least on paper my Gators seem totally overmatched by Jolly Old Saint Nick Saban‘s team. But they gotta play the game and I need something to do at 4 this afternoon while waiting to make a killer batch of shakshuka in my Anolon pans that I just got for my early Christmas present. Maybe the Gators can get me an early present, too. Hey, a guy can always hope and the Gators have about as much of a chance as all the pundits told us Presidenty McFuckface had.

    As for Gronk going down, I really pissed off our gracious bloghost earlier this week when I suggested to her that perhaps BillBel can convince his BFF Trump to pardon Hernandez in time for next season so that the Cheating Cheaters can replace Gronk. But of course I can’t repeat that truly outstanding joke or I might just get myself banned from the Wheelhouse forever. And I still haven’t gotten Mr. Maz to respond to this joke yet, either…

  3. bmaz says:

    I am too traumatized by the Gronk loss to deal with your randy humor!

    Also, that Trump like Christmas card of your Coach Mac is very Trumpian. Didn’t know you were supporting that.

  4. Peterr says:

    If 41-7 qualifies as a “tough win,” bmaz, what would you call “28-27”?

    Here in KC, most of talk radio callers are looking past the Dirty Birds to the visit by the Rayduhs on Thursday night. We may get our first snow of the year on Wednesday evening, which could add an interesting mix to things on Thursday. It will still be below freezing at game time, but not (last I heard) snowing.

     

    • bmaz says:

      Yeah, it was closer when I wrote most of the post! Not so much at the end, but I didn’t go back and change that. Oops!

    • bmaz says:

      That’s pretty funny. I don’t know about Alonso. I think he might be tempted if McLaren would let him go, which is no sure thing, though Button is still around to come back I guess, even though he was supposedly only reserve status for next year. Gotta think that Hamilton would have a cow though if Merc brought in Alonso. Lewis didn’t like the competition even from Rosberg and Alonso is better than both of them.

  5. Peterr says:

    Because of the jackass perfidy of Art Briles and Ken Starr, screw Baylor. That supposedly religious institution can rot for what they have done over many years.

    This.

    But it gets worse . . .

    Imagine that you are Ian McCaw, the AD at a school that was scathingly raked over the coals for sweeping rape allegation after rape allegation made against football players under the rug, and for having no substantive Title IX office in place despite the law being enacted in the Year of Our Lord nineteen hundred and seventy two. Thankfully, the “outside independent” investigators gave only an oral report to the school, so there’s no paper trail of your actions (or lack thereof) by these folks. But even so, you’ve been kicked to the curb in a very ugly and very public way, and you need a new job. But your faith is strong that God will provide.

    And behold, it came to pass.

    “My vision for Liberty is to position it as a pre-eminent Christian athletic program in America and garner the same type of appeal among the Christian community as Notre Dame achieves among the Catholic community and BYU garners from the Mormons,” McCaw said in a statement. . . .

    Liberty president Jerry Falwell Jr. said McCaw’s experience made him the right candidate for the job.

    “Ian’s success really speaks for itself,” Falwell said in a statement. “You look at what Baylor was able to do during his tenure, it fits perfectly with where we see our sports programs going. This is an exciting time for us.”

    Yes, McCaw’s success really does speak for itself. Where else would he end up but at the school led by a power-hungry Trump-apologizing evangelical trust-funder?

    Falwell’s students were appalled by his endorsement of Trump, and early reaction to this hire is . . . not good.

    A number of Liberty students and alumni voiced their disapproval of the McCaw hiring on Facebook.

    “Liberty, I’m a student. I love you so much. But I love standing with victims of sexual abuse even more. So disappointed that you hired a man who has covered up previous assaults in athletics,” student Laura Genn wrote. “Jesus cares more about binding wounds and mourning with those who mourn than he does about winning football games. Very poor choice.

    “And before the ‘but we should forgive him!’ comments start: We can forgive him while still realizing that he is unfit for a leadership position and will not keep women at LU safe,” she continued. “‘Let he who is without sin cast the first stone’ was said to protect a woman from men who wanted to hurt her and cover their own sins; don’t use it to defend men who want to hurt women.”

    Alumnus Jeffrey Weertman wrote on Facebook that he is “disappointed by the decision.”

    “As an alumnus that lives in Texas and has seen all that has gone on at Baylor with their athletics department, I cannot see how he fits into the ‘vision’ of Liberty,” Weertman said. “At least not the Liberty University I graduated from.”

    One alumnus went so far as to say that he thinks McCaw’s hiring is a sign that it’s time for a new university president.

    “A new president is in order,” V.t. Owens II wrote, also voicing disapproval over Falwell’s endorsement of Donald Trump. “As a student/alumni I’m appalled at how the board hasn’t reprimanded the president. The son of the founder shouldn’t even be appointed to such a post. No one will bring into question his public controversial stances because of whose child he is. Had it been John Doe there would have been a vote to remove him.”

    Maybe Liberty could hire Ken Starr, and put the whole band back together.

  6. lefty665 says:

    Jeez you’ve ignored your Cards and the ‘Skins, wazzup? Looks like the Cards remain in the wildCard race if they beat the skins, and they’ve got a couple of pretty good offensive tools. Skins are back to parading up and down the field and being ineffective in the red zone. That seems as much coaching as Cousins, he had another almost 450 yard day against Dallas. They’ll be without TE Jordan Reed with a separated shoulder. He’s as important to them as Gronk is to the Pats. The ‘Skins offensive versus the Cards defense could make for an interesting game, I gather they’ve been pretty stout. Think the Cards are a couple of point favorites.

    • jo6pac says:

      He does that and he never mentions the 9ers but then why would anyone talk about them even in Trash Talk.

      Go Raiders

  7. quebecois says:

    Rosberg’s exit was predicted by a friend of mine not half an hour after he was proclaimed World Champion. I laughed at him. I think that Hamilton will block Alonso coming to Merc, Button is waiting for that call. Nice race, Verstappen ruled once again. Hope the new cars will shake up the existing hierarchie of F1. And since this is trash, I hope Ferrari sucks the big one.

  8. bloopie2 says:

     
    Colorado still wins out.  “Annie Mabus smashed a bottle of sparkling wine from a Denver vineyard against the Navy’s newest attack submarine Saturday, christening it the USS Colorado as the vessel joined a fleet expected to number more than 300 ships by 2019.”
     
    Regardless of Trump/Clinton, Rep/Dem, good/bad, I think that today it is essential that one of the world’s superpowers have nuclear attack submarines—do you disagree?
     
     
     
     
     

  9. Peterr says:

    Poor Art Briles.

    Former Baylor coach Art Briles is not a candidate for the vacant head-coaching position at Houston, the school announced in a statement Saturday.

    Houston’s board chairman Tilman Fertitta wanted to include Briles in the interview process but ultimately was overruled by school president Renu Khator and athletic director Hunter Yurachek, a source told ESPN’s Brett McMurphy.

    “Earlier this week Art Briles expressed interest to me regarding the Houston head coach position,” Yurachek said in the statement. “After discussion with University of Houston leadership, we developed a list of candidates to be interviewed that did not include Art. At this time, we will have no further comment on potential candidates or timeline.”

    Think about what this story says about the toxicity of Briles right now. When was the last time you heard of a school president overruling the board chair about anything? And here, it would have been easy enough to say “OK, we’ll give him an interview” with no intention of hiring him, simply to keep the board chair happy.

    But even giving him an interview was viewed as too dangerous. The president is saying “if word got out that we were even taking a look at him, that would be the kiss of death.”

    Poor Art Briles.

    Maybe Ian McCaw will need a new head coach at Liberty soon . . .

     

    • bmaz says:

      Welp, my OSU over Oklahoma prediction is looking bad.

      Whoa! Alabama is favored by 24 points over the Gators! That’s a LOT.

  10. Rosalind says:

    somebody talking trash about me…?

    and one more sports radio nimrod whining that Michigan must be jumped over Washington to number 4 “just because” and imma gonna lose it. Pac 10+2 never ever gets respect (and yes, I’m aware of our recent bowl track record).

    Go Ray-duhs!

    (And L.A. football fans are showing about the same enthusiasm for the L.A. Chargers as they are the Rams.)

     

  11. bloopie2 says:

     
    How many of these college kids are knowingly harmed by the NCAA system?  That is, how many know, up front or at some point, that they are pawns in the system, being used by the schools and the NFL as they supposedly make themselves a better life via higher education?   100%?  50%?  20%?
     

  12. bloopie2 says:

     
    In case anyone missed it, you should know that a Bolivian jet crashed, killing 70+ persons including an entire Brazilian football team (Chapecoense), because the pilot/owner decided he could make a long flight without refueling along the way and then ran out of fuel at the end.  Absolutely criminal.  Mass murder.

    • Peterr says:

      Per this report from Deutsche Welle, it’s not quite that simple:

      The airline director Gustavo Vargas told Bolivian television that the plane may have skipped a planned refueling stop in northern Bolivia because the airport was closed.

      That’s a little different from saying “we decided to skip refueling”. (And yes, I realize that’s from the airline.) Still, if you were skirting that close to the limit on fuel . . . let’s just say that it’s not like running out of gas on the highway because you thought you had enough to get to the next exit.

  13. dakine01 says:

    Well, it’s good news (possibly) bad news with my Hilltoppers.  The good news is the ‘Toppers have won their second straight C-USA championship, beating LA Tech 58 – 44 this afternoon (after losing to them 55 – 52 at LA Tech in early Oct.)  The bad news is Hilltopper coach Jeff Brohm is apparently on the list for a lot of open Power 5 jobs this year.  I do hope he stays around for a while. It does get tiresome to see a WKU coach (basketball or football) have some good seasons then get lured away to some not so good Power 5 team where he struggles for a few years before being canned.  (/harrumph harrumph and all you kidz get offa my lawn)

  14. bloopie2 says:

    To Peterr:  (Sorry, “reply” button not working).  The Chapecoense flight was delayed taking off, so by the time they took off, they knew it would be too late to get to Cobija for refueling before Cobija closed for the night (it’s a daylight only airstrip)—yet they left anyway.  Also, the flight plan as filed listed the same number for “distance to destination” as for “plane endurance” (range).  So they knowingly took off without any reserves, while industry standards require enough reserves both to hold for a while or divert elsewhere (in case your destination airport is closed) and to still even then have 30 minutes left.
    The pilots would have gotten “low fuel” warnings along the way, which apparently they ignored.  Also they never radio/declared an “emergency” (world-wide standard term) which would have given them absolute priority over every other plane to land, and they might then have made it.  The pilot was the company owner, it was his last and only working plane, and cancelling (or declaring ”emergency” and then being subjected to investigation thereafter) might well have put him out of business and in jail.
    Simply put, he took off with barely enough fuel to make it there bone-dry, and when a short “hold” intervened, he didn’t speak up but instead allowed the plane to run out of fuel, as a result losing all his electrics so he had no navigational aids, at night, in a mountainous area 15 miles away from the airport when the airport could not get him on radar (to help guide him in) because of intervening mountains.  In sum, from before takeoff to the disastrous end, he took numerous steps that could easily and foreseeably lead to his passengers being killed.
    One can’t trust general news outlets for accurate information on plane crashes.  I’ll point you first to a well-respected web site called “jacdec” which notes: “The direct distance from Santa Cruz-Viru Viru (SLVR) to Medellin-O Herrera Airport (SKMD) is 1605 nautical miles (equiv of 2975 Km). This distance is greater than the official maximum range of a standard Avro RJ-85, which is only 1600 nm (2965 km). To Medellin-Intl Airport (SKRG) the distance is exactly 1600 nm”
    I’ll also point you to a web site called pprune.org which is a pilots’ (and others) forum for discussing such events in real time.  This particular event is the first one they list under “Rumours and News”.  Wade through it all (tight at the beginning, toward the latter parts it gets bloated) and you will get the straight scoop.

  15. bmaz says:

    Are you full logged in when trying to use the reply button? Would you try logging out and then back in and then trying the reply function?

    We seem to be getting several of these comments and I would like to figure it out. Thanks.

  16. bloopie2 says:

    I don’t “log in”, I have never done that. I just enter my email address and “name”. Also,l I can tell you that I sometimes have luck getting in via Internet Explorer, when my usual Mozilla Firefox won’t get past the robot thing.

    • Peterr says:

      It’s been a long work day for me, and I’m catching a fast dinner and internet break before diving into an evening meeting . . .

      Wow. A fake punt for a 55 yard TD, a pick-6 and another pick for 2 on a Dirty Birds 2 pt conversion attempt. Gonna have to watch the highlights on the news tonight when I get home.

      If the Buffs can make the Rayduhs walk the plank, there will be some serious partying around KC tonight. Just hope they keep it calm until I get home and off the road.

  17. What Constitution? says:

    So the Rams got to scrimmage against the Varsity today.  A couple more weeks, let the receivers get over the nervous dropsies, they could be OK.  But the New England team is pretty good.

    • bmaz says:

      No, it is not you. It is no longer there, for technical reasons. What does it look like she you go to the Login screen? Can you enter your name and email? If so, give that a try. I think – think – the results will be the same, but am kind of interested.

      Like I said, this is not your folks’ fault. It is on our end, but trying to sort out what is what.

       

  18. bmaz says:

    Ooof. Okay, for technical reasons, apparently that is gone. Try doing the “Log In” though, with your email and screen name entered in that screen, and see if that makes a difference.

    Sorry to make you our guinea pig, but we do want to get this all right for everybody. This is not a test that works for me to try, so I appreciate the help.

    • bloopie2 says:

      I normally comment with bloopie2 and my email.  At the “login ” screen, do I put my email in the first box and bloopie2 in the second one?  That doesn’t work.  It’s looking for a password.  When I tell it I lost my password and ask for a new one it tells me there is no user registered with my email address (that’s correct).  Any suggestions of what I should be typing, in what box?

    • Peterr says:

      They have got to be hoping Maclin is healthy for the Rayduhs on Thursday night. They intentionally kept him out today, with an eye toward that game.

      See more thoughts above.

  19. bloopie2 says:

    I normally comment with bloopie2 and my email.  At the “login ” screen, do I put my email in the first box and bloopie2 in the second one?  That doesn’t work.  It’s looking for a password.  When I tell it I lost my password and ask for a new one it tells me there is no user registered with my email address (that’s correct).  Any suggestions of what I should be typing, in what box?

    • bmaz says:

      No. Then thank you. That alone tells us a quite a fair amount.

      We will look into this, and try to remedy. It is not as easy as anyone may think. Very much though, thank you for helping me look at it.

       

       

  20. lefty665 says:

    Whew, the Cards beat the ‘Skins fair and square. Think that puts the Cards on track for a wildcard spot and knocks the ‘Skins off. They both earned it. Cousins throwing an off target interception instead of a potentially game tying touchdown to an open receiver at the end was the way the game went.  Tune in next week for the ‘Skins Iggles contest for NFC East Last place.

    • bmaz says:

      I still like the Skins chances at a wild card better than the Cards. More likely maybe is that they both miss out.

      • lefty665 says:

        Wouldn’t be surprised, the ‘Skins are showing all the flaws you’d expect in a rebuilding team. The good news is that the future may get better. In the meantime they show just enough flashes of pretty good to be frustrating.

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