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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

A Greek God Says Goodbye, While A Huge Ted Says Hello...


Jerry goes to jail, college football gets a playoff, and a Greek God says goodbye to Boston. They may not all be the most pleasant of topics, but that's where I've decided to centralise this week's news and notes. I'll probably take a shot at Seth MacFarlane's "Ted" , too, and mention Dana Jacobson for some reason I still don't completely understand...

Enjoy...


Quick thoughts on Jerry Sandusky, because honestly, I'm not tryin' to spend anymore time talking about a kid diddlin' sociopath than I feel I actually have to. Here's the deal. He molested a bunch of kids, was convicted for said crime, and now will likely spend the rest of his life dodging a different kind of molester on a daily basis as he tries to take a shower. That's karma, at least to some degree...

What most seem to be forgetting, is that while this case is largely about a man having to pay a price for a series of heinous and illegal acts, what should be just as important part of the "case" is how an alleged center for education covered up his repulsive and illegal behavior in order to keep their money machine known as their football program from suffering any black marks to it's stellar reputation. Disagree if you must, but those are the real monsters, here. Sure, Sandusky is a scumbag and deserves to rot in jail, but so do his "superiors" that let this behavior go on unchecked. If they go unpunished, then what was really done? It would be like taking the gun away from a convicted murderer, but allowing him to purchase another weapon any time he wants. Granted, that's a slightly extreme and muddy example, but you get my drift. Everyone needs to fall in this thing, and fall hard. Or in my opinion, it was all for naught...
Yeah, sorry I can't take you
seriously on this one...

Oh, and as for former ESPN hostess, Dana Jacobson, adding recently that she too was a victim of molestation in her youth? Sorry, but you've had ample chance to tell your tale, and this just comes off as a desperate grab for some much needed publicity. Cold hearted, I know, but that's how I see it. And I have trouble seeing how anyone could see it any other way. I mean, she was a "broadcaster", for crying out loud. She had a platform to reveal this dark part of her life for years, but is only talking about it now? Sorry, not really buying it. Not to say she wasn't molested, I wasn't there, but I will virtually guarantee this is more about her getting her name out there again than it is about her getting something off of her chest. I feel for ya Dana, I really do, but attaching your name to a controversial topic seemingly out of left field is just the worst type of publicity grab there is. Whether it actually happened to you, or not...
The NCAA announced on Tuesday that it had come to an agreement on a 4 team playoff. OR at least, that's what you heard. If you actually read what they had allegedly decided upon, then you may have read this:

"Two main topics that need further discussion are how teams will be selected and  how revenue will be distributed."

Now, I'm no titan of industry, but isn't that the whole essence of this freakin' thing? Or was it such a task coming to an agreement on how many teams would participate, that it made these seemingly key issues seem more like the tying up of a few loose ends? Either way, I guess it seems like they've got it "figured out", so good for them. And more importantly, good for the fans. Finally, a legit way of determining a champion. Now naturally, I have a playoff format that I think would be even better. And here it is:

*Top 6 teams (as ranked by whatever ranking system they're deciding to go with) are all in the playoffs.

*Teams #1 & #2 receive 1st round byes, and will host "home games" (either in their building or a neighboring NFL stadium) in the semifinals.

*Teams 3-6 play each other in "play in" quarterfinal games, at neutral sites (likely current bowl game sites)

*The Championship game, which I would simply call "The Football Championship" (taking a page out of the British Open's book), would be played at a neutral site belonging to the city that had the highest bid/offered the best package to the NCAA. Much like the Super Bowl.

Even with the new playoff, most projections say it's going
to be tough for a "Boise St." to make the Final Four.
Why 6 teams? Because the 4 team format doesn't really leave any room for an "underdog", which is what the public really wants to see put into play. I'd also prevent any official rankings from coming out before the 8th week of the season, and insist that any team competing in the playoffs must come from a conference that actually has a conference title game...

Detractors from my model will sing the "too many games" song and likely have the audacity to mention the term "student athlete", but I think with a little schedule tinkering (which this "association" is long overdue for), my plan would truly be the best option for everyone involved. Besides, anyone that thinks that the NCAA is going to get a taste of the money/attention they'll receive from this playoff and not want to expand is just flat out delusional. My plan takes that into account without blowing this thing completely out of proportion...

But, whatever. Beggars can't be choosers, and any playoff at this point is worlds better than any system that's ever been in place in the history of the sport. Now the NCAA can focus on the next big item on their plate. Paying the players. Should only be another 100 or so years before they get that one figured out, so stay tuned...


The Kevin Youkilis era ended in Boston this past week, and in my eyes, it ended rather appropriately. He got a nice ovation from the fans during his final appearance at Fenway, and he left town with the 3rd base position in good hands. Sure, you could argue that the Sox could have "gotten more", but the fact remains they probably couldn't have, and the roster is better off with him left off of it...

What I'll remember most about Youk, besides the reckless passion that he played the game with, is how his name more or less ushered in MoneyBall to a group of fans that were craving a "secret formula" for success. As a fan in '03, I read the Michael Lewis story about Billy Beane and the Oakland A's, and one of the biggest things I took away from it was that my team, the Red Sox, were already in a great position to make this new take on baseball work to their advantage. After all, they had the player that Beane arguably coveted the most. Kevin Youkilis, the "Greek God of Walks". Now, everyone uses the tactics that Beane once used to "beat the house", so it seems almost appropriate that Boston's once "secret weapon" has more or less outlasted his usefulness...

Not saying Youk's career is "over", but being on the back nine of his career it was smart of the Sox to let him go. I wish him the best, and while his presence on the field will most definitely be missed, but it was time to move on. Hopefully, this shrewd move will pay dividends on the field, but even if it doesn't, it was still the smart move to make. Now, all the pressure goes back the to the rest of the roster, namely the starting pitchers. Because whether Youk goes on to hit .400 with the White Sox and Will Middlebrooks hits .125 doesn't matter. This team's going to score plenty of runs. IT's still all about the pitching. And while the loss of that fiery bastard Youkilis may change how the team and the clubhouse are viewed, his being gone has done little to change the identity of this team on the field, and what they'll need to do to win going forward...


Closing it out this week, here's a review on Seth MacFarlane's much hyped stuffed animal comedy, Ted. Not a review from me, as I'd rather cut myself than waste money seeing that in a theater. But rather a review from Grierson & Leitch, my trusted movie savants over at Deadspin. They say it sucks, and for all the reasons I figured everyone would have thought when they first saw the trailer. The Bear isn't funny, the concept is stale, and the jokes are flat out lazy. Oooooooo, the stuffed bear smokes weed and likes hookers. Fantastic. And if that concept is so hilarious and fresh, then why isn't Wilfred the hottest show on TV? What's Wilfred, you say? Exactly...

Hey, I love Seth MacFarlane's work on TV, without question. But it was fairly clear from the start that Ted wasn't going to be my cup of tea. Unlike his TV skits, it seemed lazy and unsophisticated, and this review bears (puns everywhere) that out. And it's weird. Because at first, I was convinced that Seth had gone into my brain like Leo Dicaprio in Inception, and decided "Ted" was a hilarious name to use for a comedy. Then, when I saw what it was about, I was upset that he was using such a hilarious name on such a shitty concept. Now, I get it. Because when it comes to this movie, Seth MacFarlane himself has become the "Ted". And if you're still not familiar with that phrase, go head and waste $10 on this movie and you will finally know what I mean...

Stick to talkin' dogs, Seth. And maybe talking aliens, too. Matter of fact, just stick to drawing pictures for the small screen, and I think we'll all be very grateful...


Have a good week, Teds...


Teddy Wiliams...
100...

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