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Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Stayin' Classy...

ARE YOU A MEMBER OF ROOCH NATION?

Welcome back, loyalists. It was a great weekend in these parts, and while I'll get to all that in a minute, there are a few more site updates that I'd like to educate you on before I get to my unique blend of verbal lashings and well timed humor. Last week, I added a new pimptastic photo and a few new ESPN "widgets," but with my new editions, I've officially taken myself, and my site, to the next level. That's right, I said MY site. While I still may be under the general Blogger umbrella, I finally took the next step and registered my own domain name, http://www.roochnation.com/ . Same site, just a new, snappier name. I figured it was easier to refer people to my site with a name like RoochNation, as opposed to http://rooch24.blogspot/. wait you're gonna need a pen and a piece of paper.com. So, update your browser's accordingly and feel free to start inserting the phrases "Are you a member of Rooch Nation?" or "Rooched" into your everyday vocabulary. Example: After watching a guy get his face punched in by another much larger guy, you could say "Dude just got Rooched!" which translates to "That guys face just experience the same kind of punishment that Rooch dishes out when he attacks athletes and celebrities on his web page. Pretty catchy, right?

Secondly, seeing as music is such a big part of who I consider myself to be, I've added several songs to my page in hopes of enhancing the average visitors viewing experience. Like it says on the blurb located under the songs (right), these are songs that truly reflect who I am as a person, and will hopefully give those that visit the page even more insight to my life as a fledgling sports pimp. Feel free to pick whichever song you'd like to listen to when you first get here, just don't try to listen to all of them at once. A) it doesn't work, and B) that's just kind of sketch, even by my standards.


Now that I've updated you on all things concerning the newly formed republic of Rooch Nation, there were 4 big games in the NFL this weekend, and I see it as my duty to give you my thoughts and observations on each one, as well as a few things you can look as we move on to the Conference Title games in just a few days...



Working in chronological order, the first game brought us spectacular performances by Brett Favre, Ryan Grant, and the "Lambeau" Snow in HD as the Packers proved way too much to handle for Matt Hasselbeck and the Seattle Seahawks. The game started off the way I thought it might, with the Seattle defense creating two quick Ryan Grant turnovers, but the 2nd year running back shook off the rust mighty quickly, using the rest of the game to run for 201 yards and 3 touchdowns in leading his team to the comeback victory. Naturally, Brett Favre was Brett Favre, dancing around in the snow and tossing underhand shovel passes that cause everyone to remark how much "fun" he has on the field, and Green Bay turned an early 14 point deficit into a convincing 42-20 beatdown. Turns out, the Pack are for real (at least at home), and any team that scores 3 TDs on the ground, and 3 TDs in the air against a stingy Seattle defense, has to be considered as a legitimate Super Bowl contender. Personally, I could care less if Brett Favre ever sees the field in a Super Bowl again before he (eventually) retires, but I do have to give the guy props in one regard. Before the season started, Favre said the reason he was coming back for another season, after basically telling us all he was going to retire at the end of 2005 season, Brett said the reason he was going to return, was that this Packer team had more talent than any other team he'd ever played for. We all laughed at the remarks then, and chalked it up to him making an excuse to keep playing, but two years later, and the guy's been right on the money. They might be young and inexperienced, but without a doubt, this is the best Packer team I've ever seen, and that includes the one that upended my Pats in the '97 Super Bowl. Young'ns like safety Atari Bigby (cool name and even cooler dreds), linebacker AJ Hawk and RB Ryan Grant have provided this team with the skill and more importantly the boost to get them over the top, and if Brett truly did look at this team a year ago and see this as a possibility, then I have to give him all the credit in the world. They're fast, they're aggressive, they're dangerous, and they're officially the last team I want to see lining up against the Pats right now...

Well speak of the devil, and he shall appear. Thanks to a surgeon like effort from Tom Brady in which he set an NFL record for completion percentage (92.8), a breakthrough game from Laurence Maroney (122 yards rushing, 40 yards receiving, TD) and the typical playoff game sealing interception from Rodney Harrison (his 6th pick in his last 5 playoff games) the Patriots were able to hold off the Jacksonville Jaguars and advance to their 5th AFC Championship game in the last 7 years. It was truly virtuoso performance by Brady, but let's not let it overshadow the great performance by the Jaguars, and the holes they exposed in the somewhat sagging Patriots D. The running attack that was supposed to drive New England nutty, didn't, as the Jags were held to only 80 yards on 22 carries, but it was David Garrard and the passing game that were able to move the ball up and down the field, seemingly at will for most of the game. Granted, the Patriot defense was able to shut them down for the second half, allowing two meager field goals, but the performance by Garrard and the air attack showed that it's not just the Patriot run defense that may be vulnerable, it's the entire defense that's proving to be the weakest link. Is it a case of the "bend but don't break defense"? OR is it something that should really worry Patriot Nation moving forward? Well, if you think the offense isn't good enough to beat every remaining team by themselves, then I would be worried. I, for one, am not worried in the least. The defense comes up with the big play when it has to, and while typically a dominant team like the Pats has a dominant defense, this team just doesn't, and we have to learn to accept that. As long as Tom continues to be his perfect self, and playmakers like Maroney, Moss, Welker, Faulk and Watson continue to make the plays on their end, any sort of defensive liability shouldn't be of any concern. Especially when their opponent in the AFC Championship game isn't even the team they feared it might be...


Sunday brought us two games in where we thought we knew who the winners would be, but as usual, were proven to be dead wrong...


In the first tilt, a banged up San Diego Chargers team actually pulled off what I had deemed as "impossible" and beat the Indianapolis Colts. Even more shocking, though, was the way San Diego won, overcoming injuries to their stars (Tomlinson, Gates, Rivers, Jamaal Williams, Luis Castillo) and overcoming the officials, who tossed several key flags that could have given them plenty of reason to complain had they come out on the losing end. I guess more or less the thing I want to know is, what the Hell happened to the Indianapolis Colts? They were the team that everyone said had the best shot to upend the Patriots run at perfection, yet they played as though they'd never even been to the playoffs before. Careless turnovers, stupid penalties, inability to score in the clutch. That's not the Colts I thought I saw all season long, and it's certainly not a team that had any shot of beating New England. As for the Chargers, they can take this win, file it under "character building" and begin packing their shit for the off season, because there is no way this team can beat New England next week in Foxboro. They do have the speed on both sides of the ball that can give the Patriots fits with RBs LT, Sproles and Turner on O and Merriman and Cromartie on D, but they simply lack the playmakers to get the job done against this perfect, veteran squad. It's funny too, because last year it was the Chargers who were too good and too fast, yet it was Troy Brown and the Pats who stormed down to the Whale's Vagina and ripped the game from the Bolts. While SD might not have what it takes to return the favor this time around, I do give them props for snagging a win on the road against Indy, and guaranteeing the AFC title game will be a Manning-free zone...at least until commercial break...

Last but not least, it was the New York Giants turn to topple a well rested home team. A lot of people thought this game would be close mostly because of how well the Giants have been playing lately, but from my end, it was the poor play of the Cowboys in this one that allowed the G-Men to come out on top. I won't go so far as to blame Tony Romo's going to Mexico with Big Boobs McGee as the reason Dallas lost, but that team just didn't show up with enough intensity, and as a result, will be watching the remainder of the reason from their home theaters. Eli was able to manage the game, and lead his squad on a big touchdown drive as the 1st half ticked down that turned out to be the difference maker in the game. With their defense applying the pressure to Romo, and their rushing game providing time for Eli to throw, the Giants were able to move their road record to 9-1 on the season, and finally beat the Cowboys, who had already laid it to them twice in the regular season. Now, it's on to Green Bay for Tom Coughlin and crew, where Eli will attempt to keep the dream of back to back Manning Super Bowl appearances alive. And for Peyton and that family's sake, I hope he does. You know those two are about to appear in 25 different commercials between now and then anyway, so you might as well have one of them in the damn game! Last thing we need is a repeat of that US Open when Andy Roddick went out in the first round, but was still in every single commercial, or that year when Coach K was in every freaking commercial during the NCAA Tourney, despite his Dukies being nowhere to be found! If the dude (or in this case dudes) are going to make corny commercials, they better be on the field for me to yell at them when the thing is over! I know they can't hear me, but I demand at least some semblance of justice, dammit!

Note: I am aware that Tom Brady is currently a spokesman for a fruity water company and that in the past he has posed with goats for a fashion spread, so if you're not a Patriots fan, feel free to similarly hate, with no consequences from me. Just remember, he's workin' on ring #4 here, so don't take it too far, unless you want some sort of beatdown in which I may or may not stab you with something moderately sharp...


As more my picks last weekend, I got extremely lucky, and still only went 1-2-2. OK, so I didn't get that lucky, but seeing as I was the only one I know to lock the Pats in at (-11), I should have been 1-3, and for that I am grateful. I should have known better than to admire how close I was to 60% accuracy last week, so after that swift kick to the junk, I'm paying homage, thanking my lucky stars for my one correct prediction, and trying to clear my head for a run at a 3-0 finish to my '07-'08 campaign. For that to happen, I have a distinct feeling that a certain team is going to at least go 2-0 against the spread in the next month. Hint: I'm not talking about the Chargers...


Last Week: 1-2-1

Overall: 65-45-6 (.586)


Now, lest we forget, there are other things going on in the word of sports and entertainment, and since I see it as my duty to get to the most interesting and pertinent of those stories, it's time to have at it...


News and Notes We're now more than a week removed from Roger Clemens' 60 Minutes interview, his taped phone conversation, and his expletive filled press conference, but in my mind, nothing has changed. I thought he was guilty before all that crap, I still think he's guilty now. One thing that may have changed, is the number of people that now agree with my point of view, and are starting the view the Rocket as a cheater who's looking for a way out. It's gotten to the point now, where Clemens is trying to think of semi legit reasons to not appear before Congress in a month, and the whole thing is just making him look more and more guilty. Can't say I'm the least bit surprised, but all this dancing around the subject just reinforces in my mind that there will never be an actual ending to this thing, since neither McNamee or Clemens can prove the other one guilty, one way or another. I mean, I guess this whole thing should still be entertaining, with Bud Selig trotting his corpse out in front of Congress in a suit that looks fit to cover an 80's sofa, but if no actual "justice" comes from any of this, then what the Hell was the point?


*As for the Rocket's most recent employer, the New York Yankees, new franchise figurehead Hank Steinbrenner has made it clear that the Pinstripes are no longer in the running to land pitching ace Johan Santana...that's right...again. Oh, wait a second. You're saying 5 minutes have passed? OH, well that must mean the Yanks are back in discussions with the Twins, right? Seriously, Hank. Either get the deal done, don't get the deal done, or just stop making these god damn declarative statements on the topic. We don't give a flying rat's ass if you are or you are not done talking to the freaking Twins! If you get a deal done, let us know. If a deal falls through, let us know. If nothing happens, we don't care! Why don't you at least step up the maturity level on this thing, and pass the Twinkies a not that reads "do you want to trade Johan Santana to us, please check yes or no." I understand you have the need to keep you're team on the front page all year long, Steinbrenner family, but please unless there is actual "news" to be reported on, just save your breath, and go about counting your money, or whatever it is you uber-rich people do when you're not voting for the latest Republican candidate for President.

*In case you're wondering why I haven't mentioned how the Celtics have been losing a few games lately, it's because that's what happens in the NBA. Teams actually lose games! I know we've gotten used to nothing but winning around here lately, but the Celts are either gonna have to be in the playoffs, suffer a major injury, or crash the team plane before I get up in arms over them any time soon. They're still 30-6, they're still on pace for 68 wins and they're still 4 1/2 games better than any other team in the whole league. Like I said, I'll worry when it's time to worry, and now is not the time...

As I've promised over the past month or so, with the dwindling NFL schedule, will come an increased focus on college hoops. There were some big games this week, as Georgetown fell to Pitt and UCLA upended Washington St., but the real big ones are still to come as we delve deeper into conference play. Here are some big games to take a look at this week, with the game of the day italicized for ya. A lot of these games are early "make or breaks" or teams like Providence College, Cincinnati, Kentucky, DePaul and Minnesota, but for the most part, the teams listed below are teams that are a near lock for March, meaning you should keep a watchful eye on their progress. My "waaaay of the radar" game, which probably won't be on TV, is a battle in the Horizon League between Butler and Cleveland St., who is the only team to best the Bulldogs so far this year. Laugh now, but I'm telling you both these teams will be in the Big Dance, so you might want to take notice...


Tuesday
Ohio St. @ Michigan St
Miami @ Boston College
Cincinnati @ Notre Dame
Kentucky @ Mississippi St.

Wednesday
Duke @ Florida St.
Florida @ Mississippi
UMASS @ Dayton
DePaul @ Villanova
Virginia Tech @ Virginia

Thursday
Vanderbilt @ Tennessee
Marquette @ Louisville
Butler @ Cleveland St.
Indiana @ Minnesota
Providence @ UCONN
Boise St. @ Utah St.

Make sure to check back on Friday for my latest top 10 poll, as well as a schedule of all the big games to come this weekend...


*Seeing as I have a lot of friends that follow sites like TMZ.com and PerezHilton.com religiously, I can't help but get swept up in some of the celeb drama that's constantly swirling around. Not to say I don't know take note of a lot of it on my own, but not to the extent some do. For instance. Did you know that stalk-a-razzi hub, TMZ.com, had cameras at the front and the rear entrance of the courthouse yesterday in hopes of catching Britney and K-Fed on their way to their child custody hearing? No wonder the chick has lost it! Every move she makes, the cameras are right there. And don't hit me with the "oh well if you want to be famous..." card, because nobody has ever been treated like this before by the press, and quite frankly, nobody deserves it. The media has taken a girl I once had delicious fantasies about, and turned her into one that only makes it into my dreams about craziest Hollywood drug binges that end with me taking the stand in some sort of K-Fed or Kato Kaelin murder trial. You guys need someone to follow around with cameras? Try Michael Jackson. His life is already way fucked up beyond repair, and won't even need to cause disturbances to get him to do insane shit to put in the magazines.

Now, I'd like to thank TMZ, for this. Here's a chick that deserves to have these type of things put out there about her, because apparently, she's just as big a whore as we all had hoped! (as if we needed further confirmation...still...I'm not kickin' her rich skinny ass out of my bed) Sounds like she's making plans, or dare I say casting, for her next big film, She Got Herpes...Somethin' tells me P-Money was hangin' out with Picabo Street, if you know what I mean. You know, Snow White, but maybe Sleepy wasn't there? Right? Get it? Lawrence Taylor? Still no good? George Jung? Tony Montana? Ahhhh you got it now, right? Good work!.....by the way I meant she was prolly doin coke....and not the drink....you know...the white powder that makes you feel like a super star...although I'm no doctor...





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