Sunday, December 31, 2006


That is the only word to describe last nights Chik-Fil-A Bowl performance. The Oline got manhandled and QB looked like a deer in the headlights. Hats off to UGA.

Friday, December 29, 2006

Dick Pound

Great article by Sally Jenkins of the Washington Post. Shows what a tool Dick Pound of WADA is. I don't support doping but his convict first, no appeal methods smack of the Gestapo.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

College Football Semi-Final

Well the college football season is at an end with the exception of the bowl games. What have we learned this year?

1. A BSC crisis and discussion in October is worthless. One vote matters, the last vote. I think that is why Florida jumped Michigan in the last week. The voters assessed the whole season with some thought versus the normal weekly robotic voting they normally do and determined a one loss Florida (SEC) team deserves a shot to play OSU more than a one loss Michigan (Big10) team did that already lost to OSU. I have no problem with that logic.

2. It is early but the Oregon bowl thumpin by BYU is not making the PAC 10 nor USC and its two losses look particularly good.

3. The ACC was down this year and I think Va Tech is the best team right now but October matters and so we play in the Peach Bowl (I refuse to call it the Chik Fil-A Bowl). Again, no problem with that outcome.

4. The Big 10 was strong but I am not sure how strong. We will see after the BCS Championship Game.

5. The SEC was deep but it is hard to tell if a great team exists. Many very good teams. Again, the BCS Championship Game will decide.

6. The Big 12 is getting deeper with the reemergence of Texas A&M and Nebraska and Ron Prince looks to be making strides in Kansas. These things run in cycles and they are due for a depth rebound.

7. My ACC Coaches Hotseat Poll was pretty accurate with 3 of the 5 mentioned getting the axe. Roof at Duke would have gotten it anywhere else but who would replace him? Friedgen is the only escapee and that is because he really turned the team from mid-October onward.

8. Bear Bryant must be turning over in his grave. In 1980 who would have ever thought the coach of Rutgers, West Virginia and South Carolina would turn down that job. As a noted radio host stated, "Alabama is like a woman who is a 7 but thinks she is a 9".

9. The Big East made its case with three fine programs in Louisville, WVU and Rutgers. Excellent coaching jobs at all three places. Now get someone to care in the Northeast and your TV contract will rise.

10. Enigma of the Year - Ga Tech. Led by Mr. Enigma Reggie "I look like Peyton Manning this quarter, and Ryan Leaf the next" Ball they soared when they should have struggled and struggled when they should have soared. I still contend the play caller should be fired for not throwing to Calvin Johnson 20 times a game. Long stretches with no looks his way were puzzling.

11. Feel Good Story of the Year - Wake Forest and Rutgers. Third smallest school in Div 1-A wins a conference championship and punks FSU at home. The Man in the Gray Flannel Suit of the ACC destroys the nay sayers and wins its first football championship in over 30 years. Schiano finally pulls through. Very good coach and recruiter.

12. Notre Dame still has no defense. Four year starter Quinn and and all but one senior Olineman and backfield is gone next year. Now we will see if Weiss can win with HIS players. I think he will but senior quarterbacks in College are very valuable.

13. Coach of the Year - Jim Grobe and Bob Stoops. Jim Grobe could win this every year. Bob Stoops wins because he lost his starting QB and a key lineman one week before the season starts and then lost Adrian Peterson late in the year and still won the Big12 and really only had one loss (to Texas) if that officiating debacle in Oregon is corrected.

14. Officiating is getting worse. The instant replay has made officials, scared, lazy or both. So many reviews, so many calls overturned.

Love to hear your comments on others I may have missed.

The Crusoe's by Martin Dugard

Excellent draft of a book by Martin. Start on the link above and then follow the chapter links on the right side.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

In College FB This Game Would Matter!

For all the BCS bashers out there, think about this. Oral Roberts beating #1 Kansas would matter in college football A LOT. As it is no one is paying attention to college basketball this time of year and it barely gets mentioned. Is that what you want September and October to become in college football. A big ho hum until November and then the start of a December playoff?

Oh, and the loser of Michigan/OSU does not deserve a rematch. This week starts a defacto playoff and someone gets knocked out. My view is Michigan goes bye bye.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

College Football Thoughts Week 6

Officially at the halfway point and the cream is rising!

PAC 10 – Da’ Bears are back baby! After getting the beat down on Rocky Top in Week 1 Cal has come sneaking back into the PAC 10 and National pictures. The beat down of a very good Oregon team served notice to a somewhat struggling USC to get ready to play on November 18. The Cardinal met their defensive standard for the year by allowing 31 points to the Golden Domers. Given the quality of O the Domers have that was probably a triumph. And don’t look now but it looks like the Curse of Stoops has followed brother Mike Stoops to Arizona as they currently sit 0-3 in the conference.

Big 12 – As expected Texas had more horses than the Sooners as they romped to a relatively easy victory. Colt McCoy is looking better and better each week. Baylor beat Colorado to send the Buffs to their longest losing streak in 117 years (isn’t that basically since the inception of college football as a game??). And don’t look now but mighty Missou is 6-0 and tied for the Big 12 North lead. Looking like its coming down to Missou and Nebraska for the right to get beat by Texas in the Big 12 Championship game.

SEC – Gators roll and have to be considered at least the 2nd best team in the country right now. Undefeated and having played Tenn, Alabama and LSU in three of the last four weeks that is impressive. However, next two weeks bring Georgia and Auburn (away). That is a tough stretch. If they make through they will likely face the Razorbacks in the championship after they punked War Damn Eagle, Alabama. BCS talk in October is always a curse Tommy. As I suspected Georgia is not as good as people thought after Tennessee hung 50 on them at home. When was the last SEC game with 84 total points?

Lil E – WVU and Looelvle keep rolling and their match up on November 2nd will decide the Lil E championship. I think the Cardinals have the edge because they can throw and run. If the WVU spread O gets the run shut down I don’t think Pat White can beat you. I say this although neither team has played a single conference game yet. South Florida, Cincy, Pitt and Rutgers are all capable of the upset.

Big 10 – Nothing really new. OSU romps, Michigan continues to impress and PSU lucks out against Minnesota. Hopefully you punters followed my logic last week and bet against Michigan State. The folding will continue.

ACC – Just keeps getting more discombobulated. NC State is rising (and currently leading the Atlantic Division) and again beat Papa Bowden probably dooming him to only his third year without an ACC championship. Duke put a scare into Alabama but alas got put away. Gah Tech survived Maryland (barely) and continues to lead the Coastal. UVA went down to Tobacco Road and lost to former AD Terry Holland’s ECU Pirates. Things in Hooville are not pleasant these days. Miami took care of UNC although it was not that impressive and Klempson had to struggle with 5-0 Wake before Wake imploded in the second half. Better talent decided to play I think. Hokies and Eagles were off as they get ready for their Thursday night tilt in Boston.

Coaches Hot Seat Poll: #1 Coker, #2 Bunting, #3 Friedgen, #4 Amato #5, Roof.

The Looking Good List

THE Ohio State University


Big Blue


West By God Virginia

Men of Troy

Monday, October 02, 2006

College Football Thoughts Week 5

Here we are coming up on the halfway pole and the picture gets ever clearer. Here is ole Hatcher’s view of the world.

Big 10 – In a tip of the cap to former colleague Cable the Big 10 seems to be the class of the conference buffet this year. Throw in honorary member number 12 Notre Dame and they appear to have the best team and the best group of the top 4. Iowa tried in vain to stop the machine formerly known as The Ohio State Buckeyes but alas did not have the firepower. Also it was probably predictable that Michigan State, after handing a game to Notre Dame last week, would puke up a loss to that powerhouse from Illinois. Jon L. and the Spartans seem to make a habit of folding after losses. Take their opponents and the points this weekend punters. Overall it appears the only thing stopping OSU is themselves or a perhaps a Lloyd Carr inspired Michigan squad (is that an oxymoron??).

PAC 10 – The conference that suffers from East Coast Bias (that is what happens when most of your games end after midnight Saturday when we East Coast media types are sleeping off the tailgate party) is alive and well. USC narrowly escaped a game Washington State group. That is what good teams do. Also coming into view is a very good Oregon squad that by virtue of the karma gods got the break(s) of a lifetime against Oklahoma and they appear ready to make the most of it. Those beauties notwithstanding, the Cardinal is hooorible (to quote Bill Walton). Defense is an unknown particle in Palo Alto as the Cardinal has given up 31 or more in each of their five games.

Big 12 – What can be said? There is Texas and maybe Oklahoma and Nebraska and nothing else. The Red River Shootout should be for all the marbles again and Texas looks like the favorite. Oklahoma has obviously pee peed on the karma gods because they seem doomed with the QB/Lineman loss right before the season starts and that Oregon game. Stoops needs to make an offering or something.

Little East – There is Louisville and WVU and maybe Rutgers (did I write Rutgers???). Like most of the mid-Atlantic Louisville and WVU took the week off by scheduling Open. I think the Little E has done a stunning job staying in the game after the Swofford Raid a few years back but I am still glad my Hokies are in the ACC. How many weeks until hoops season?

SEC – Florida pulls it out and is looking better and better. Damn if Alabama would ever locate an offense they would be dangerous. Auburn is tough but they don’t exactly roll up the points either. I see a Florida/Auburn showdown in the title game with the Gators having a touch more firepower. Tennessee appears to be back and Phillip may yet have something to say about that SEC race. Georgia is highly ranked but I don’t think they are that good. They eked out another close win against a powerhouse Ole Miss squad. Tailgating in the Grove may be like a trip to Mecca but football in Mississippi is definitely the hired help to the rest of the SEC gentry. In other words, do as you're told.

ACC – Since the majority of the conference decided to schedule Open this week and many teams struggled there is not much to say. As I feared my Hokies are too young and inexperienced in too many places to not make the critical mistakes. It was a well rounded Beamerball loss to a GAH Tech squad that was looking to make up for last year's beat down. However, some fine Italian sausage on a new grill made up for some of the pain. The only other conference game of note was the Hoos vs. the Dukies. The Hoos got rolling early and never looked back and 0-12 is becoming quite possible in Durham. Never fear my Southern aristocrat fans, Midnight Madness is 14 days away. All other ACC teams in action played horrible teams with the exception of Miami which eked out a win against a surprising Houston squad that is channeling David Klingler and Andre Ware. Coaches Hot Seat Poll: #1 Coker, #2, Bunting, #3 Amato, #4 Friedgen #5, Roof.

The Looking Good List

THE Ohio State University

Men of Troy

West By God Virginia


Big Blue

War Eagle



Sunday, September 24, 2006

College Football Thoughts Week 4

A ho hum week but we still managed to learn a little about players and teams. Here are my thoughts.

Notre Dame - When the term Luck of the Irish is used look up Notre Dame vs. Michigan State 9/23/2006. How can a team that looked that crappy for so long against a team that is pounding them into submission somehow comeback and win? I don't know but don't believe the Charlie Weiss is great and he calls plays aggressively stuff. One fourth down call worked, one lead to a Mich St. touchdown. I prefer to believe that Knute Rockne sold his soul to the devil.

Boston College - Painful loss. The good brothers at BC forgot to consult Knute on how to achieve football immortality. To lose to the Wolfpups that way is painful. Part of a life of penance I guess.

USC - Another week, another win.

Florida - Those Nike Gridiron commercials must be doing something for ole Urban. The Gators keep on rolling even against a game Kentucky squad. When UF gets to smack talk UK about football and hoops the weuxf gods have to be smilin'.

ACC Update - Clemson takes out 50 years of frustration against UNC - wait James Davis just scored again. Hold that Tiger they look like the class of the league. The Blue Heels are going fast - in the wrong direction. Chuckie turned down the blow torch under his chair a few degrees. Lord knows what he had to promise to come up with that miracle win. FSU worked off their frustrations with an old school beatdown of Rice. UVA took the Thursday night header vs. GaH Tech (who could be pretty good). IMHO an offensive cooridinator that does not get Calvin Johnson at least 10 touches a game should be fired for stupidity. Hees a baaaadd maaaan! UVA on the other hand is just not very good right now. Maryland struggled to beat Florida International (WTFAT?). Miami beat up on Open which is a good thing given the Lord of the Flys scenario this writer sees unfolding in South Florida. Wake kept its undefeated streak alive beating SEC pup Ole Miss and Duke tied Open after a late score by several members of the lacrosse team (cheap joke I know). The Hokies struggled against Cincy who has a decent 2.5 quarter team. Unfortunately the game is 4 quarters. Brutal schedule to boot. I continue to think my Hokies are overrated at 10th/1th and are probably 20-25th. D got exposed a little up the middle and a suspect running game and a QB with four total games of experience does not inspire loads of confidence. More will be known this time next week after they play GaH Tech. ACC Coaches Hotseat Poll #1 Coker, #2 Bunting, #3 Amato, #4 Friedgen, #5 Groh

The Looking Good List

THE Ohio State University

Men of Troy

Big Blue

West BY GOD Va.


War Damn Eagle

Sunday, September 17, 2006

College Football Thoughts Week 3

Separation Saturday and the pretenders from the contenders gets a little more focused.

USC– Hard to argue with someone that keeps knocking down whatever team is put in front of them. Nebraska has made progress though and Callahan gets a pass.

Michigan – Good game Lloyd. Saved the country much angst and your program’s pride. Special helpings of good vibes for doing it under the gaze of Touchdown Jesus.

Klempson – You beat Daddy and got yourself back into the ACC race. Kudos for getting it done in a pressure situation after losing a lot of players to injury.

Auburn – Slobernocker SEC football at its best. I love games like this.

Oregon – Incredible game. Can the person who stole Bob Stoops mojo please give it back? Guy goes from untouchable to Chief Black Cloud. If it can go wrong it will. Beware Pete Carroll. The Karma Gods might look for a new victim.

WVU – Nothing more fun than azz kickin one of your rivals. Team is impressive. Louisville will be a tough out though. Not sure you D can handle them. We’ll see. Rich Rod is one of the better coaches in the game today. Someone is gonna come knockin’ with lots of cash and an easier recruiting base. Beware!

ACC – Sucks this year. Miami gets punked at Louisville. Loss is ok but lose the swagger guys. This ain’t 1991. UVA gets beat on Homecoming by Western Mich, NC State gets blasted by Southern Miss, UNC gives up 42 points to 1-AA Furman. Hot Seat Poll this week is Coker #1, Amato #2, Bunting #3, Fridegen #4, Groh #5.

Va Tech – We pass better than we run. Next up cats and dogs living together. Oh, and we have played NO ONE yet. TBD on this team.

Looking Good List

THE Ohio State University

Men of Troy

Big Blue

West BY GOD Va.


Sunday, September 10, 2006

College Football Thoughts Week 2

We are now settling into the college football season. The 1-AA patsies are behind us and we start to get a feel for team’s have real potential.

USC-East – Keep recruiting Visor Boy because you still don’t have the horses in Columbia just yet. All those SEC taunts you threw out at UF are coming back to haunt.

Notre Dame – Good game Charlie. Not sure how good Joe Pa's gang is just yet but an impressive win nonetheless. D looks better.

Duke – The NCAA Division 1 Football Committee is pleased with your efforts yesterday but doubts remain…Probation to continue until further notice.

Texas – Guess that Vince guy was pretty valuable. Mr. Cheeb and Firearms would have been helpful last night when OSU WRs looked like they are running free in an Austin meadow instead of Darryl Royal Stadium. Keep working on it. You could get another shot in January.

OSU – Impressive win against the hook’em horns crowd. Let’s talk more Troy Smith and Gonzalez and less Ted Ginn. Has anyone ever gotten more hype two years in a row for less production? He is a very good player but I don’t see All-World on the field. Very impressive reload on D as well. Texas scored 40+ in 12 straight games and you held them to a single TD.

Clemson – Tommy Boy, oh Tommy Boy. Another close loss in a game you should have won, and against your own ACC Division. Papa wins again.

NCST- Ok I am officially on the Chuck Must Go Bandwagon. Post P. Rivers, has anyone done less with more talent?

Beamerball – “It’s back”. Recruiting message to O-linemen, we need you every year! We are not a Top 25 team.

Florida State – God I wish we could play you the week after a big game.

Looking Good List

THE Ohio State University

Notre Dame


Monday, September 04, 2006

Hincapie Wins US Pro Cycling Championship

Great weekend for George. After a bizarre year which saw him possibly lose Paris-Roubaix with a broken fork and lose the Tour of Benelux in a super bizarre crash in the final 100m on the final day you have to feel good for one of the good guys of the peloton.

College Football Thoughts Week 1

Week 1 of the college football season is in with the exception of Miami vs. FSU. What have we learned?

Cal – Thanks for playing the national championship game. The consolation prize is an autographed copy of Rocky Top.

Notre Dame – You won Charlie but you better buck up the troops because while Ga. Tech is game, Michigan and USC have better talent. Who knew Brady Quinn could run??

Duke – By now the Dukies should have received their probation letter from the NCAA Division 1-A Football Committee stating that any program which lets itself be shutout AT HOME by a Division 1-AA team is in danger of losing 1-A status. 0-12 looks to be the outcome unless Wake, Vandy or UNC fall under some spell. Wake looks to be the obvious choice given their difficultly with the putrid Orange(men) of Syracuse. Vandy at least put up some points on Michigan and I don’t think you are going to punk UNC two in a row. That game might be the Roof-Bunting JOB Bowl.

Colorado – The Dukies at least have an excuse. They are very good in just about every other NCAA sport, winning national titles or contending in many of them every year. Yea I know Montana State is a better football program than Richmond but YOU are Colorado. For all your troubles lately you have won or shared national titles in recent history. To get punked at home and only score 10 points… The Big 12 North is really quaking at the thought of playing you guys.

Looking Good List



Ohio State

Friday, August 18, 2006

Martin Dugard Blog

Just a plug for Martin Dugard's new blog. If you are into endurance sports he covers them all and is a great writer. His blog during the Tour de France was awesome. I attached the link over in the links section as well. Happy reading!

Are you ready for some football???

I know I am. No super teams this year (Texas and USC) and a bunch that could win it all. The Hokies look shaky especially on O-line, QB (11 snaps total experience) and TE (zero experience from three guys and I mean they have never ever been on the field during a college game). This will be a season of Beamerball at its finest. The Defense looks set to roll again this year after finishing #1 in the nation last year and Frank has his eyes set on getting back in the kick blocking game. Look for Macho Harris, Vince Hall, Xavier Adibi and Chris Ellis to reak havoc. QB Sean Glennon should mature during the season into a good QB who makes good decisions, can beat the blitz and make all the throws but may not dazzle you with his legs as much as Hokie QBs of recent vintages have. Brandon Ore is a stud tailback in the Lee Suggs mold but after him things get a little thin. Notice to all HS stud running backs, we give the tailback the ball A LOT, sign on to the program...end of recruiting message. Unlike last year's good out of conference schedule, this year I would give Blacksburg HS even odds in about half the games.

See you at Northeastern.

Saturday, July 29, 2006


I really hope you get proven innocent.

Friday, July 21, 2006


Floyd Landis put in one of the most memorable comebacks in sports history yesterday. After getting destroyed and losing the Tour De France on Wednesday after he bonked and lost 10 minutes on the final mountain climb he had the guts, fortitude, and quite frankly the balls and insanity to try a solo 150km breakaway yesterday over four mountains in stifling heat. That does not work for someone that close to the lead of a race. To paraphrase Mr. Spock, in cycling, the legs of the many always beat the legs of the one --if the many care and Sastre, Evans, Kloden, Pereiro, Leipheimer, Menchov --- they cared, or should have.

Simply outstanding. If Landis wins (and even if he does not), his ride will be part of Tour lore forever.

Great summary here

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Le Tour 2006

On the eve of the second rest day this year's Tour de France continues to deliver surprises. Of course nothing matches the Day O bombshell about potential doping and the suspension of Ullrich and Basso. Two weeks into the race, Le Tour is on pace to set a record for the number of different yellow jersey holders. Discovery Channel has not had much success either especially Hincapie (after his second in the prologue I had high hopes). On a high note for America, Landis and Hincapie become only the fourth and fifth Americans to ever wear Yellow. However, none of the race favorites seems confident they can hold the jersey (See Floyd Landis letting a guy 29 minutes back take Yellow from him).

I can't decide if this uncertainty makes for better theater than Armstrong's domination but the last week is totally up for grabs in my view. Landis and his hip could easily have a bad day in the Alps, as could Menchov. Frankly anyone within 5-7 minutes could be said to have a decent chance. Funny things happen in the last week of the Tour. Guys with so so form to start ride into shape and guys with great starting form start to fade. Alpe d'Huez will be monumental as always stay tuned.

Friday, April 07, 2006

March Madness in Review

Now that the Tournament is over (congrats to my nephew's Gators!) I have to reflect on its continuing diminuation of the college basketball season overall. In my opinion March Madness threatens to make the rest of the season obsolete. I listen to two hours of sports talk radio a day during my commute and I would wager the average amount of weekly time spent dicussing college basketball prior to the end of February is insignificant. Then the tournament kicks in and it goes into overdrive especially during the first week or two.

This brings me to my second point which is the Tournament starts on a high note the first weekend due to all the upsets, the total number of games and the proliferation of mid-majors. The second weekend is still good because a couple of cinderella teams exist and everyone is excited to see if they can go on. By the time the Final Four rolls around people are tired and the excitement seems diminshed and the Championship Game on a Monday night has to be the worst marketing/TV idea of all time (note to CBS - push the NCAA to have the semi-finals on Friday night with the finals on Sunday afternoon). The problem with the tournament is it diminishes excellence during the season and kills the national appeal of games. Contrast this with college football. Fans are focused on college football from the very first games, they matter! Florida St vs. Miami on Labor Day is a huge game not only for the schools' fans, but ACC fans and fans of any team with National Title hopes. Any late season games like USC/UCLA played deep in November matter a lot because one team (typically USC) could be out of the title hunt with a loss. Contrast this with basketball where the season starts in anonimity for most teams and late season games often mean nothing unless you are on the tournament bubble. A classic example is Duke losing to UNC on Senior Night /last game of the year. Great game, fans mayl watch but the loss means NOTHING to Duke in the grand scheme. Don't get me wrong, I like the tournament but the football season is so much more enjoyable than basketball because so many games are relevant to fans in addition to those of their own teams. A great compliment to football would be a very limited playoff structure where the Top 4-8 teams would play for the championship over 2 or 3 weeks. It would drawf March Madness.

Friday, March 31, 2006

VT Men's Soccer Support

Support the Men's soccer team at Va. Tech.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Great New VT Olympic Sports Blog

Head on over to this new blog put together by a consortium of VT fans. Get insights into the Olympic Sports programs at VT. If you have something to offer on any sport...well you know the old part of the solution, not part of the problem.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Pro Cycling in US Gets It Start in My Hood

Great article by John Wilcockson on early pro races in the Va, Md, DC area.