[Photo: Jose Chavez via Unsplash]

Trash Talk: Here for ‘The Big Game’

Okay, I promised I’d put up a Trash Talk post for The Big Game. Here it is, have at it.

What Big Game, you might ask. Yeah, I made that mistake last week.

I must be slipping a cog because a Michigander like myself should have remembered University of Michigan Wolverines plays its Big Ten rival Ohio State University Buckeyes today.

Most of the hardware stores in this state are probably rather quiet right now. Their usual denizens are likely parked in front of the tube in their favorite sports bar if not their den, if not out in the woods watching on their mobile device while choking out the final weekend of firearm deer season.

They’ve just kicked off. If you want to watch the number 3 ranked team U-M meeting the number two team OSU, you’ll find them on Fox.

Big question going into this game — at least for Michiganders: is running back Blake Corum recovered from last weekend’s injury to his left knee?

~ ~ ~

Let’s switch gears to the NFL —

— You Green Bay Packers haters must be tickled at the season-ending suspension of rookie lineman Sean Rhyan for performance enhancing drugs. Personally, I can’t understand why someone with so much going for them would fuck up like this so early into their career with a professional team. He’s played only one game for the Packers.

— Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones just happened to be watching an effort to harass Black students to prevent them from entering the North Little Rock High School they attended with Jones. A photo surfaced this week in which Jones appears within arm’s length of the harassed students. He was just 14 or 15 years old and it was just a coincidence he was there in that photo watching the harassment Jones expects us to believe. We’re also supposed to give him some credit for having been punished by his high school team for being anywhere near this conflict in which he just stood there.

ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith expects to likewise cut Jones, who has profited immensely from so many Black bodies working for him for years, some slack because Jones hasn’t deserved the heat he’s received this week.

Yeah, well those six Black students didn’t deserve the harassment in that 60-odd-year-old photo, the harassment they surely received before that photo, or the discrimination they’ve endured because of structural racism since then.

Smith will continue to benefit from his access journalism and Jones, who has never hired a Black coach, will continue to enjoy his billions.

~ ~ ~

Fucking FIFA. I will be so glad when this atrocity is over.

— “Bonesaw” bin Salman gifted each of Saudi Arabia’s players a Rolls Royce Phantom after their win over Argentina this past Tuesday. Seems on brand awarding a fossil-fueled fossil to a team representing a fossil fuel-producing fossil in a fossil fuel-producer’s futbol series.

— U.S. Men’s National Team tied England 0-0 in yesterday’s Group B match. We’re supposed to be amazed by this. Should we be? I don’t know; I thought the U.S. had a better team but what do I know being a failed soccer mom (failed meaning my youngest played soccer but didn’t enjoy it enough to stay with OR I didn’t nag them enough to stay with it).

— So far World Cup hasn’t crashed the bird app — so far.

~ ~ ~

I don’t really understand Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) let alone the appeal.

Isn’t this just a use-whatever-works-to-bash-your-opponents, a kind of free-for-all ball-free contact sport?

Whatever it is, apparently women can do it, too, and this week’s big women in MMA match saw an undefeated fighter brought down for the first time in the four years the Professional Fighters’ League has been in existence.

Former judo Olympian Kayla Harrison lost to Laura Pacheco in a unanimous decision. This was the third time the pair have met with Harrison coming out on top the first two times.

I wonder how much Harrison’s insta-family has affected her training along with the pandemic having cut into the PFL’s schedule. Harrison’s stepfather died suddenly in 2020 leaving behind an 8-year-old and a 2-year-old, for both of whom Harrison took custody. It’s a lot to add to a person’s plate.

~ ~ ~

Okay, that’s enough from me. There’s roughly nine minutes left in The Big Game and the teams are fairly well matched. The score now is 31-20 with Michigan leading; I wouldn’t bet against Ohio coming from behind.

Tell us what other sportsing you’re watching this weekend.

63 replies
  1. Willis Warren says:

    Georgia Tech came out fiesty, but the odds of them staying that way for four quarters against the dogs is low.

    • FiestyBlueBird says:

      It’s feisty.
      Someone here had to tell me that early in my days here.
      But I’m a rule follower here.
      So I remain FiestyBlueBird.
      I like that spelling better anyway. Even though it’s wrong. Sure as hell looks right to me. So I’m with you in a fiesty spirited kind of way.

    • ralph white says:

      I’m a dawg fan, but I was proud of the way Tech played today. I grew up in Atlanta and Tech has a fabled and long athletic history. I would enjoy seeing them become competitive again. I believe they should hire Key as he has the kids playing hard and smart again.

      Michigan and USC look like the two teams who could give my dawgs a tough game. But, I wouldn’t bet against UGA hoisting another NC trophy on Dec. 31.

  2. Rapier says:

    Yes, it’s that time of year again. It’s time for the annual contest between the Ohio State University football team and the team from the University of Michigan. Whenever I hear the words Ohio State football one name instantly leaps to mind. The name of a former Ohio State player who embodies everything that the state of Ohio and it’s people are and stand for.

    That name? Art Schlichter; gambler, grifter, thief, treacherous back stabber.

    • klynn says:

      There are former OSU coaches for sports at Ohio State who are/were wonderful people who worked hard to make thoughtful strides in their sport and cared about students. My dad was one of those coaches.

      • Peterr says:

        This is one way in which the institutional instinct to protect harms the rest of the institution. Boston priests who were not child abusers were among the most angry about the manner in which Cardinal Law protected abusers, because it painted them all with an ugly brush.

        • klynn says:

          I am not protecting the institution. My Dad was absolutely sickened by the abused athletes and coaches failing to protect them. The abuse happened after my Dad’s era of coaching. My point was you cannot paint all the coaches for sports at OSU as terrible people.

        • Epicurus says:

          It seems that the poster is painting all the people of Ohio as gamblers, grifters, thieves, and back stabbers and not just coaches.

          “Whenever I hear the words Ohio State football one name instantly leaps to mind. The name of a former Ohio State player who embodies everything that the state of Ohio and it’s people are and stand for.

          That name? Art Schlichter; gambler, grifter, thief, treacherous back stabber.”

          Seems a bit much.

  3. Jak King says:

    Some really good international rugby this morning. Big guys with no armour hitting each other with passion and skill. And tonight is the last day of the autumn sumo basho where the players make both rugby players and football stars look like midgets.

  4. smf88011 says:

    I have been a Denver Broncos fan ever since my Mom’s car broke down in the northern suburbs and this really nice guy pulled over and helped us. When her car had to be towed, this guy gave us a ride home to Longmont. During the ride we found out he was a Denver Bronco and that I was a Pittsburgh fan. He laughed and asked if he gave us tickets if I would become a Bronco fan. Needless to say, I have been a fan ever since. :)

    As for the Broncos this year – they have 3 O-Line positions that have 3rd strings playing for them – LT, C and RT. Their top RB wasn’t with the team at the beginning of the season – the starter went down for the season, #2 had a fumbling problem and was released, and #3 is out as injured too. WR’s have had 3 of the top 4 either out for the season or miss significant time due to injury. You cannot expect Wilson to carry a team where 26.41% of their cap is sitting on IR.

    Sorry, just had to put this out in writing after not being too interested in the teams, etc of the above.

  5. James Sterling says:

    Every year I poke my cardiologist, who went to Michigan, questioning whether his Alma mater can make a respectable appearance vs. Ohio State. Maybe this will be the year; Michigan just took the lead in the 3rd.

    • taluslope says:

      Caught the first half at a hotel in Boise then moved to a sports bar to watch the thrilling second half at a sports bar where my kids and I were making way too much noise (daughter was born in Ann Arbor) when I was working as a research scientist there. The crowd were mostly UM supporters with only one Ohio one. One fan enjoyed us whooping it up so much that he bought us lottery tickets!

      My kids will probably never forgive me for hating Michigan State more than that school from down south. Daughter doesn’t seem to care much for Urban Meyer.

      (Sorry I was late for the party, long day traveling in an eV, damn thing charges so fast we can’t get through a decent meal before its time to move the car; other things can be annoying too, especially in winter weather.)

      Go Blue!

  6. Peterr says:

    Best singing fans at the World Cup are the Cymru, aka Welsh, hands down.

    Dafydd Iwan is a folksinger and Welsh activist, especially for the Welsh language (the use of which Henry VIII effectively banned by requiring all business involving the govt to be done in English, and which English educators worked strenuously to eradicate in Welsh schools in the 1800s). When Maggie Thatcher went after striking Welsh coal miners, Iwan protested with them and went to jail with them. He wrote a song at the time called “Yma o Hyd”, which has become an unofficial anthem for their national soccer/football team. Take it away, WalesOnline:

    Dafydd Iwan’s ‘Yma o Hyd’ has been a familiar anthem to Welsh speakers for some time, but has firmly moved into the mainstream in recent years, and sport has had a big part to play in its popularity.

    A song about the survival of Welsh culture and language, it has been a mainstay of pre-match festivities at the Scarlets and Wrexham AFC for some time, and has also been heard at Welsh international rugby matches.

    Recently, it has also become a part of Cardiff City’s pre-match preparations, and is often played alongside the equally iconic ‘Men of Harlech’, which greets the Bluebirds players as they walk out on to the pitch.

    The influence of what is Iwan’s finest work, as a musician anyway, has also grown alongside the Welsh independence movement, where it unsurprisingly strikes a chord, but even outside the nationalist movement it remains popular. Back in 2020 the track even got to the top of the UK iTunes chart.

    Now, it’s recently become something of an unofficial anthem for the Welsh national football team, with the Football Association of Wales recently inviting Iwan himself to sing the song ahead of the team’s World Cup play-off win over Austria on Thursday [last March].

    The chorus is simply two phrases, repeated in various combinations:
    Yma o Hyd (2x)
    Er gwaetha pawb a phopeth (3x)
    Ry’n ni yma o Hyd (2x)
    Er gwaetha pawb a phopeth (3x)
    Ry’n ni yma o Hyd (2x)

    It translates “Still here! Still here! In spite of everyone and everything, we are still here.”

    Gave me chills the first time I heard it, and still does. Here’s video of Iwan singing it before that game with Austria mentioned above. As you watch it, watch how Iwan gets overcome by emotion as the harmonies of the choir of thousands in the stadium rocks him back on his heels.

    Fast forward to the US v Wales game earlier this week. The US scored early, and looked like they would take the win, only to have Wales score in the 82nd minute. Almost before Gareth Bale’s penalty kick goal fell to the ground inside the netting behind the US goalie, the crowd was singing Yma o Hyd. Stunning.

      • Peterr says:

        From the comments on that speech from YouTube:

        “I watched this and the next thing I knew, it was morning and I had assembled an army to march on the English border. I’m not even Welsh.”

    • rosalind says:

      goosebumps. thanks so much for posting, Peterr! and i’m now taken back to a tiny 2-story home in Llangollen, Wales where my two friends and i are staying at the one’s grandmother’s home during our post-college backpack journey. we click on the b&w TV to see a live broadcast of a choir competition taking place just up the road. and on the screen – my church choir director at the helm of her S.F. Bay Area women’s choir. small world indeed.

      next fav Welsh memory: the telephone operator refusing to put my collect call through until i pronounced “Llangollen” correctly. it, uh, took a while.

      • Peterr says:

        I remember talking with operators when I was a high school exchange student in West Germany. It occasionally took me a little time to make myself understood, but it was more my German* as opposed to the operator’s “Say it right or I won’t connect you” that you are describing.

        *My German teacher was a native-born German Jew, who immigrated to Boston as a child in the 1930s. After about three weeks in West Germany, I realized that I was speaking German with a New England accent, and that insight made adjusting my German much easier.

        • scribe says:

          While stationed in Germany, one of my platoon sergeants had set down roots there – owned a house, German wife, spoke German well. Sorta. He spoke it with a pronounced Puerto Rican accent.
          Hearing him, many Germans could not comprehend what he was saying, often winding up shaking their heads like they were suddenly full of bees.
          The accents and dialects in German vary from town to town. So much so that, while listening to the radio it’s easy to distinguish the announcers from, say, Vienna, from those from Munich or anywhere else.

  7. Lit_eray says:

    Watching the last weekend of the MotoGP races from Valencia, available by subscription. The races were a couple of weekends ago and I do not know the winners yet, so please do not spoil it for me. I am about ½ way through the free practice sessions.

    In America it is easy to avoid learning results. Not so easy in the rest of the world where some the world’s highest earning athletes are well known and the sport is widely supported.

    This season all three series, Moto3, Moto2, and MotoGP, have seen sensation racing. Only Moto3 has been settled early. The other two are down to the last races. Congratulations to Moto3’s World Champion, Spain’s Izan Guevara for GasGas (a rebranded KTM). Moto2 is close and down to Japan’s Ai Ogura for Honda and Spain’s Augusto Fernandez for KTM – all Moto2 bikes use English Triumph motors. In MotoGp France’s Fabio Quartaro, last season’s World Champion, on a Yamaha is a long shot to catch up to Italy’s Franko Bagnaia on his Ducati.

    For those who have experienced scrapping your knee on tarmac while screaming through a long sweeper at triple digits, you know and appreciate the existential essence of relying on and controlling two credit card patches of rubber separating you from disaster.

    Obligatory Trash Talk Comment: Other forms of racing are nothing but sissy boy/girl activities pretending to be noteworthy.

      • Peterr says:

        From The Guardian last Monday:

        Danke, Seb: F1 bids fond farewell to retiring Vettel after 16 years

        German won four championships and grew from spiky young antagonist to universally loved pillar of the sport

        Bowing out with the crowd on their feet delivering a standing ovation and chanting your name is perhaps the fondest farewell a competitor can hope for. In Abu Dhabi on Sunday Sebastian Vettel called time on his Formula One career with just such a reception. Admired and respected, Vettel’s departure genuinely leaves the sport a little bit poorer.

        The 35-year-old completed his final GP at Yas Marina after 16 years in F1 and having won four world championships. It has been some career and notably for a perceptive, thoughtful character, one not of a straightforward trajectory. Here then was a man ending his career amidst an outpouring of genuine affection and a sense of sadness at his departure, where once he antagonised as many as he had endeared. . . .


        . . . this weekend all 20 drivers took Vettel out for a farewell dinner, where his great rival Lewis Hamilton picked up the bill.

        Auf Wiedersehen, Sebastian!

      • Lit_eray says:

        Two wheel and four wheel racing began before the 20th century. I am curious of the descendant connection you are making between the two. Besides, the 4 wheel variety lacks the dedicated risk of the 2 wheel variety, and is mostly boring with drivers inside of steel protective cages with fire suppression systems.

  8. Adam Selene says:

    This year’s Apple Cup between two very good teams, the UW Huskies and WSU Cougars, starts at 7:30 p.m. PST in Pullman. A nice rainy, windy night for college football in Washington. Hope I can stay up that late!

  9. Rapier says:

    If I was living in Ireland I’d start attending hurling matches. It’s kind of like lacrosse, on crystal meth and acid. I’d say it’s about 10,000 times better to watch than soccer. Admittedly it’s often brutal and the tribalism of players and fans can be over the top and over the line. It’s probably just as well it has stayed in it’s home of Ireland.

    • Adam Selene says:

      ESPN in its early days used to air Australian Rules Football, and I became a big fan. Another wild sport played with no helmets or pads, similar to rugby and basketball combined, and they have to dribble or bounce an oblong ball to advance, or serve it like in tennis. You can climb up your teammate’s back to make your shot if necessary. Too bad they dropped it from the North American feed.

      • FentFent says:

        When I was very young my father played hurling in Cork City. After we emigrated we had hurling sticks, but no place to play.
        Although it remains an extremely physical sport, some players began wearing helmets a few years ago, very wise move.

      • FentFent says:

        When I was very young my father played semi-pro hurling in Cork City. After we emigrated we had hurling sticks, but no place to play.
        Although it remains an extremely physical sport, some players began wearing helmets a few years ago, very wise move.

    • ernesto1581 says:

      Hurling is a great thing altogether, and the All-Ireland in Croke Park is not a thing to be missed.
      The only souvenirs I came home with after an entire year at UCD Dublin, many years ago and to my mother’s great disappointment, was a pair of ashen hurley bats and a sliothar, the leathern spheroid one uses in that gentlemanly sport, which looks like a shrunken head specialist got hold of a baseball and reduced it to its deadly essentials. No one wears any kind of padding whatsoever. Ladies, by the way, play a very similar game called Camogie, using similar weapons.

      Apropos, here’s a fine Brendan Behan story told to me and to several other cockeyed persons by Ben Kiely, in an after-hours establishment one evening nearly fifty years ago:

      Behan had been out on a good night’s bit of imbibition, as it were, and careening along Dame Court he happens to look into the Stag’s Head, a place he does not habitually frequent, and there he sees Daly at the bar.
      He pushes open the door and waits a minute, surveying the scene.
      -Daly! he thunders.
      The premises are suddenly silent and all heads swivel toward the door.
      -The Gaelic League is looking for you!
      -Don’t you know masturbation is a foreign sport!!

      • aduckisaduck says:

        Late to the party, but count this as postgame chatter. In 1978 (or maybe ’79) my rugby club (Chicago Lions) did a tour of England and Ireland. Maybe because of city gummint relations (Daley was gone, but lots of minions), we got a meet and greet with Jack Lynch, then the Irish Prime Minister. Our local club hosts had whispered that Jack had been quite the sportsman in his day, and as I walked through the line I heard him making polite comments about the spreading popularity of rugby. But when I got up close, I heard him connect with some visitor about hurling. He became much more animated, and one effect of this was to reveal the fact that his handsome middle-aged face was cross-hatched with (well-tended) scars. This only confirmed for me my belief that collision sports are properly manly, but to give the self-selected aggressive individuals big sticks to swing about was rank foolishness.

        • FentFent says:

          Yes Jack Lynch was a famous hurler in Cork before he went into politics. And he seems to ha ve been one of the least corrupt prime ministers in Irish history.

          But the most legendary hurler of all time,also from Cork, and very proud we all are of him, was Christie Ring. God rest his soul.

  10. mis says:

    I hope K’aaron Rodgers doesn’t fall victim to the “woke mob”!! Seem like his busted thumb and not practicing in the pre-season with his new receivers is is the Pack’s biggest problems. Go K’arron!!! :)

    Meanwhile, we’ll see what the 3rd round pick of my Bucs, Rachaad White, can do this week with the start in place of Lombardi Lenny.

  11. DrFunguy says:

    I don’t do sportsball. Except when my underdog alma mater (Go Beavers!) OSU beats the odds to take down Oregon (quack, quack). For some reason this makes me happy, even though I never went to a game while studenting.
    Unseasonably mild here on Vancouver Island. That’s, sadly, predicted to change this week with up to 15cm of the white stuff in the forcast.
    The other thing that makes me happy is the slow grinding of the wheels of justice, that will hopefully reduce TFG’s ’empire’ to dust!

  12. Cosmo Le Cat says:

    As a Univ of Michigan alumni, like Marcy, I’m proud that they won despite being massive underdogs, basically without their Heisman Trophy candidate and away on Ohio State’s home turf. How sweet it is.

    • scribe says:

      The Ohio State Patrol will be waiting, to ensure they all get tickets for one traffic infraction or another between the game and the state line. Extra ticket books have been printed and issued just for that purpose.

  13. Allagashed says:

    Football?! I hate football! Futbol?! I hate futbol! The ONLY thing on this planet more corrupt and insidious than college football and FIFA, is organized religion.

    Competitive archery, that’s where it’s at, baby.

  14. Thomas Paine says:

    Well the beauty of college football is how truly unpredictable it is and how new stars emerge in every game. MI with Corum was supposed to beat their opponents with the running game. So OSU did everything they could to stop the run. Except they didn’t know that a sophomore named McCarthy was ready to imitate Patrick Mahomes and show what happens if you don’t have Safety’s on patrol downfield. OSU also “forgot” that MI’s offensive line was good enough to pose a pretty good ground game even with Corum on the bench. It was a classic entertaining romp and put MI in the spotlight for the National title.

    Between MI, GA, TCU and USC, I think we are in for a very special NCAA Football playoff this year and if anyone thinks they know how this will turn out – don’t tell me because I prefer to watch it in real time.

  15. rattlemullet says:

    Good morning, I went to reread the comments that I read last night on this post to understand better the exchange between Bmaz and Rayne. Have they been edited out or did imagine it was within this post? Anyway I see Michigan did whip Ohio, again!

  16. goatrodeo says:

    Best sports page going! And I find myself 100% sympatico with Rayne’s sports sentiments, I’d call that a win! Great to see Blue prevail, convincingly! Let’s make it a habit. On a serious note, Herm Edwards needs to go on sabbatical indefinitely! What is ESPN thinking, what is Herm thinking? Dude is back on the air, “to give back to fans”, seems like the very week he’s fired (it’s not), leaving Arizona State in smoking ruins, the boosters nauseous, the “experiment” having failed miserably and all we know for sure is that Herm just ain’t a coach, maybe he was once, but he is not a coach anymore. Great guy I’m sure, and a hella baller back in the day, but a coach? Never. Will the Sun Devils ever recover? We can hope.

  17. Bay State Librul says:

    Hockey, anyone?
    Some wise guy came up with this hockey jargon after one of the Bruins wins – “Seek a life partner who wants you as much as Brad Marchand wants the puck.”

  18. ExRacerX says:

    In a muddy & technical race of attrition, Dutch cycling wunderkind Mathieu van der Poel (Alpecin Deceuninck) returned to cyclocross racing today at Hulst, Netherlands, beating the field into submission after a great start followed by a few mistakes & crashes he soon put behind him. Britain’s Tom Pidcock (Ineos Grenadiers) was the only racer able to stay anywhere near MvdP, but then Pidcock piled into a wooden course marker stake and smashed his front wheel into uselessness on the last lap. He was soon passed by the rest of the chasers and ended up abandoning. Podium was MvdP 1st, Laurens Sweeck (Crelan Fristads) 2nd, and Eli Iserbyt (Pauwels Sauzen Bingoal) 3rd.

    In the Women’s field, Puck Pieterse (Alpecin Deceuninck) duked it out with Fem van Empel (Pauwels Suzan Bingoal) for most of the race, with van Empel losing time in multiple crashes and then chasing back until she went down again and lost sight of Pieterse and the possibility of victory. Shirin van Anrooij (Baloise Trek Lions) finished a distant 3rd behind van Empel and the day’s winner Pieterse—all 20 years old and having consistently kicked the snot outta their elders all season.

    Always great racing at Hulst!

  19. DC says:

    OR Ducks fan but have a sentimental spot for the Wolverines as famed Wolverine Butch Woolfolk was my neighbor in NJ. He did sprints between cones on our newly paved street and I practiced skateboarded around those same cones.

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