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Westsider Rider

Monday, February 27, 2006

Back to Reality

Back to work at the end of the month, which makes it that much worse after a great weekend. It's not often I can claim a great weekend after all my teams have lose their games over the weekend but this was an exception. A group of my friends I went to school with at Michigan were in town for the weekend so it was definitely a lot of fun. It sucks now that we're back to the real world after a weekend where it just felt like we were back in school.

Sports wise it was a terrible weekend, starting and ending with Lakers losses on Friday and Sunday, yesterday even worse as it was closer game and I actually attended. It's frustrating to watch the Lakers on Sunday as I am now 0-2 in games I attend on Sunday and I've still got two other games on Sunday I have tickets for, I wonder if I need to get rid of them for the sake of the team. The Lakers are now 3-5 on Sunday home games which also include a near loss to Charlotte. The white jerseys must go and what made it even worse yesterday was the Celtics wearing some ridiculous jersey variant as well with black lettering on their usual green jersey except the names of the players were still done in white. The Lakers and the Celtics should be the two teams that are exempt from all these alternate variations of jerseys, granted I don't help the cause since I buy almost every Laker variant but still.

The basketball team lost at Columbus, as expected but it hurts because had Horton and Harris played decently we would have had a great shot to win. The Buckeyes played good D on Horton and Harris just couldn't get off even with decent looks, nothing was falling for him. But I didn't expect us to go down there and win so it's not that bad, as long as we take care of business at home against Indiana it should be all good.

Friday, February 24, 2006

That's what I'm talkin about

The Lakers picked up another W last night taking care of business against the Sacramento Queens. They had opened up a good sized lead early on only to blow it as the Queens got back to within 5 by the end of the 3rd when Kobe picked up his 4th foul and had to sit. Then in the 4th the Lakers blew it back open and coasted to an easy victory. Easy enough that Andrew Bynum and Ronny Turiaf got action in, always great to see. Kobe ended up with 36 points, 6 rebounds, and a season high 10 assists. It's good to see him getting everyone else more involved early on as in the two games back from the break it seems to be helping as Lamar has played well both times and it will definitely be necessary for the stretch run.

Well the Lakers didn't make any moves and as much as I was hearing and was hoping for something to happen we all must remember Phil Jackson rarely made midseason moves because of the difficulty of picking up the triangle offense on the run. It looks as if the offense is flowing better lately and maybe it's time that the team is all starting to get it to run on all cylinders so perhaps no move may have been better. The interesting news of the night though was the talk that Dr. Buss had talked to the owner of the Timberwolves about KG, so perhaps that is why no move was made now to open up space in the offseason for the Ticket to come to town? I can only dream.

And finally I came across this story in My Yahoo and thought it was interesting. Now some 30 year old man tried to hit on some underage girl and said he wanted to do an "R. Kelly" on her. The fact that this girl was 11 is disgusting and the guy should be charged with something but the judge ruled that the prosecution could not use the testimony including the term R. Kelly as part of its proceedings so the prosecution had to drop the case. But the term "R. Kelly" is now in the Urban Dictionary as "having sex with an underage girl." I guess the Urban Dictionary isn't good enough to hold up in court.

Coming off the big win on Tuesday the Wolverines travel to Columbus where it will be extremely difficult to pull off the upset considering the Bucknuts are coming off of a win at East Lansing and considering how difficult road games are in the Big Ten, to steal one in a place like that is just crazy. Horton could always pull a Kobe and singlehandedly drop 40 and win the game and I can only hope. Let's Go Blue!

Thursday, February 23, 2006

You sure you want to do that Damon Wayans?

When reading through your GMail you'll notice there are links at the top which will send you to articles of interest or a lot of different Spam recipes. Most of the time I have always ignored them and just went along my day, but not today as I was checking up on my mail I find this headline, "Actor Tries to Trademark 'N' Word." You can't be serious. Now I listen to mostly hip-hop and hear it all the time and do use it while singing along or when I get drunk I'll occasionally start using it as if I was brought up somewhere far far away from the suburb that I actually did grow up but to trademark it? Now you can see from my profile picture I am not black so you may disagree with me using the term ever, you have your own opinions, granted I try not to use it but sometimes all the years of listening to Tupac and the Wu-Tang Clan just take over. But I digress, Damon Wayans wants to trademark the N word so he can create a clothing line and a chain of retail stores selling the merchandise. I just don't see that happening and I can't believe he really wants to do this since he's been fighting over it for 14 months.

There's always discussion on whether the term is proper or not, some say sometimes, other say never but I don't think it's something that would really work. I'm wrong about a lot of things though so who knows if this becomes the next hot thing in fashion. I understand both sides of the debate on the use of the word and I'd probably stand in the middle. On one hand it is still a derivation of the racial slur that definitely causes pain even to this day for many blacks but on the other hand you've got the camp that says they are empowering themselves by taking the word that used to be derogatory and turned it into theirs as Tupac said it stood for Never Ignorant Getting Goals Accomplished. We'll see how this turns out but I think Damon is crazy.

Morning Thoughts of the Day

I woke up early this morning and as I was getting ready I turned on ESPN of course to watch another re-run of Sportscenter. Lo and behold they start trying to hype up their bass fishing competition that is going to be aired this weekend, I believe and they start talking about records and how the largest bass caught was some 22 pounder back almost 70 years ago or something like that, it was still really early. Then they start talking about how that record could go down this weekend since the competition is earlier in the year when there are more bass around. Next thing you know some guy starts talking while they show a clip or two from Kobe's 81 point game against Toronto and the guy says "This is like a basketball player scoring 80 points in a game or a running back rushing for over 300 yards..." Immediately I think to myself, What the Fuck is this guy talking about? How the hell are you going to compare basketball and football records to a fishing record? Basketball and Football are sports, fishing is a hobby, a recreational activity, anyone can go become a professional fisherman. You just need some good equipment and anyone can go become a professional fisherman. You can't just go buy some new kicks and gear and become a professional basketball player, I just lost it when I heard that this morning. Stupid people think anything is a sport nowadays. I mean I watch and play a lot of poker but I will be the first to tell you that it is definitely not a sport. People need to think about what they're saying on national television before they say it.

Trading deadline less than an hour and a half away and so far the only trade that has been announced is a three way deal which features Earl Watson. Still got some time and trades aren't announced right at the deadline as there will probably be deals that are announced later tonight, so I'm still holding out hope the Lakers do something. Taking on the Queens tonight followed by a "road" game at the Clippers should take both of them down but you never know which Laker team will show up on any given night, come on Mitch just make some moves!

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

You know you love it

The Roc is in the building!

After being left for dead following the 3 game losing streak, Michigan had a huge win last night over No. 8 Illinois. After dropping onto the bubble it looks as if the Wolverines are now off thanks to this win. Daniel Horton had a career night going for 39 points and carrying the team on his shoulders when they needed it. The win gives Michigan their 8th win in conference and at worst makes them .500 which seems to be the magic number for teams from major conferences and doesn't hurt that we have a couple of quality wins against Illinois and Michigan State. It's going to be tough to get the job done down in Columbus on Saturday but I figure we can take out Indiana and finish with a 9-7 mark in conference and hopefully get a game or two in the Big Ten Tourney.

With Chris Hunter's injury I doubt he plays again until the Tourney, if we're lucky and he'd definitely be a boost to the team when he returns. Lester Abram still hasn't practiced and I wouldn't rush him back for the regular season right now either since it looks like we've got a berth pretty much locked up. I'd look to try to get him to start practicing in a week or so if possible and maybe get him some run during the Big Ten Tourney to get warmed up so he can get back into it during the Big Dance, I'm hoping, still haven't heart much positive news related to his injury recently.

The Lakers finally got things back on track with a win over the Jail Blazers last night. Lamar looked great, wondering if that's because they're trying to showcase him for a potential trade or if he's going to start doing this on a more consistent basis, unfortunately I doubt it's either one. He has been way too inconsistent as a second option and unless he steps up I doubt we can do more than steal a game or two because of Kobe in the playoffs. Trade deadline is tomorrow, hopefully some sort of move is made because as is this team won't be doing much.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

And we're back

Was trying to post up on Friday but blogger wasn't cooperating and since I barely use the computer when I'm at home it's been a few days since I put in an update. It was a shock to see that I got Monday off while a lot of people I know didn't considering I never get days off that I shouldn't but oh well I'll take it. Didn't really do much during the weekend just watched a lot of sports so here are my takes on the weekends events.
  • I watched plenty of Olympics action all throughout the weekend, I know a lot of people don't care for the Winter Olympics, but I love sports and especially stuff that happens only once every 4 years so I'm definitely enjoying it all. My favorites from the weekend was speed skating, both variations of it, as well as ski jumping and curling. Everyone gives me the what the hell look when I tell them I was watching curling but that looks fun, I wonder where I could go play it.
  • Watched all the all-star festivities on Saturday and Sunday. First off that was pretty ridiculous how Kobe took the half court shot like a regular jumper and drained it. Andre Iguodala aka AI2 got robbed. Now I stated before the contest that I had Robinson winning and Iguodala as my 2nd choice but that was just ridiculous. From the judges fixing the scorecards so it was a tie for a dunk off to Robinson taking 14 attempts to finally get his last dunk off that was just ridiculous. AI2 getting that pass off the back of the backboard from AI was just sick.
  • The game on Sunday was ok, not as many spectacular plays as we are accustomed to seeing in the all star game but I have to say the intros were awesome. From the orchestra to the starting lineup dances it was dope as hell and definitely can't forget Destiny's Child's performance of the anthem.
  • The terrible part of it was the hideousness of the jerseys, not even sure if that's a word but they were fugly. I couldn't believe that the league approved those. Go back to a few years ago when they just wore their teams jersey with an extra all star patch on it. However the warmups were sweet, as they had the player, their team, their country as well as patches from all the all-star games that player had participated in before. I heard they're selling them but running for $250, if it was a little cheaper I probably would go cop the Kobe one.
  • Michigan football picked up another commitment from the class of 2007 in Artis Chambers, a S from Indiana. I'm late on this story as I was away from the computer but MGoBlog and RBUAS has you covered. I hadn't heard of him before this weekend but if has an early offer from the coaching staff I'm gonna side with them that this kid is a player and I'm definitely excited.
  • Finally the basketball team got housed up at East Lansing as expected but they hung tight for a while but most of the stories took place before the game as Amadou Ba shoved a drunken Sparty that was on the court during warmups and some kids from UM got the Izzone to hold up signs that said GO BLUE before the game. Huge game tonight against Illinois, I think we'll have a chance since we always play the Illini tough but losing Chris Hunter for the rest of the regular season at least will definitely be a big loss, as we didn't have enough already.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

The Good and the Bad

Well Michigan basketball took care of business at home last night dominating Minnesota from the get go. Nice to see the team get another W under their belt and we will need two more W's to make the tourney, one in the regular season and one in the conference tourney, anything more than that would just be gravy. Dion and Lester did not play again but Dion says he might be able to go on Saturday up at the Breslin Center. Not expecting much for that game, just hope we don't get blown out of the water.

Now to the bad, the Lakers and their pathetic performance last night. Any hope I had for them is fading and fading fast. They blew anohter game they shouldn't have as the lowly Atlanta Hawks came into Staples and left with a win. The same Hawks which were 4-20 on the road coming in and had not won a road game against a Western Conference opponent since early last year at New Orleans, and they're not even a real Western team since they just moved over not too long ago.

The Lakers just got outhustled throughout the game and were fucking lazy. Kobe missed a ridiculous amount of FT's and now we ride into the All Star Break with a great deal of confidence with the 3-7 mark in the last 10 games. The only positive from this game was watching Ronny Turiaf on the sidelines standing up and trying to get the crowd involved towards the end of the game. I love his enthusiasm for the game and his team and am glad to have him a part of our squad. However, this team cannot go on in this form and a trade must be made. I can only hope the players takea good hard look at themselves and their lack of effort last night and get it turned around after the break because there is no excuse for this team to miss the playoffs even if we don't make a move.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Rest of the staff lined up

After much speculation, the defensive staff was finalized today as Coach Carr officially announced Coach English as the DC as well as introducing two new position coaches. Steve Szabo an NFL assistant for 12 years, last year with the Buffalo Bills, as well as coaching for numerous colleges before that as the new LB coach. While Ron Lee, former DC at San Jose State and most recently the DB coach at Wisconsin.

I really don't have much knowledge about either of them but from reports that I'm hearing these are both good hires that will definitely help out. Szabo more for the coaching aspect and Lee will help out recruiting. Not sure what is happening with ST now, there's talk that either of these positional coaches could end up taking care of ST but that is undecided at this point.

Basketball team faces a must win versus Minnesota tomorrow but still unsure of Dion Harris' status. Earlier in the season, especially after the blowout win at Minnesota this was chalked up as a for sure win but Minnesota has turned it around by winning 3 out of their last 4 including the big one over Michigan State on Saturday. The team has to dig deep and someone's got to step up until Dion and Lester can come back.

Contrary to reports that the Lakers aren't going to make a move before the upcoming trade deadline I've been told that they are definitely working on some moves and no I am not talking about this bogus Knicks trade that is making its way around that says the Lakers are moving Lamar for Penny and Channing Frye. There is no way that works and no way it will happen. There is talk of two potential deals going down and if either one went down I'd be ecstatic and there seems like there's a decent chance that both of them could at which point I wouldn't know how to react. At least they picked up a win finally by beating the Jazz last night and should have another one tomorrow as the Atlanta Hawks come to town. That game will be the last one before the All-Star break which I can't wait for. Of all the All-Star weekends the NBA is definitely the one I look most forward to, definitely better considering it's a 3 day weekend as well.

Talk about the last person I'd ever want as a coach

I really had nothing to write about today until searching through My Yahoo! and found this article from the college football section. Yes that is correct, Cryin Ryan Leaf has been hired as a QB coach by West Texas A&M. The same Ryan Leaf that is one of the biggest busts in NFL history. From his play on the field to his behavior off the field I can't think of a worse person to have as a coach. I mean I knew there was no way Oregon was going to win the Holiday Bowl when his brother Brady was playing QB for them because if there's a gene pool for QB's that I'm not going to take my chances with it's Ryan Leaf.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse

With all the injuries that we've dealt with this year you'd think it'd have to stop at some point but no, they just keep popping up, the latest being Daniel Horton who got hurt during Saturday's loss at Purdue, he did come back to play later so it's not as serious as Dion or Lester but come on, will it ever end? It's like there is some curse on the basketball team and I just hope we can get somewhat healthy within the next week or two. The game at Purdue was one that we needed but we didn't get so now we're closing the season with our backs against the wall. The home game versus Minnesota is now a must win and then we must steal one more between the two home games versus Illinois and Indiana and the road game at Michigan State.

At least the good news of the weekend was Jim Herrmann's departure became official as he was hired by the New York Jets as their new LB coach. Aside from that nothing much new to report. The hockey team got a split over the weekend while the Lakers blew another home game. They get another chance at home to stop the bleeding as they take on the Utah Jazz tonight followed by Atlanta on Wednesday, this really needs to stop, I understand Kobe can't carry the team the entire season but someone has to step up when he isn't making shots and I can't say that there's anyone on this team I trust to shoot the shots even when Kobe is cold. Trading deadline is coming up so maybe there's a move in the works but considering Phil Jackson never likes making moves midseason I highly doubt it.

Does anyone really watch the Pro Bowl? I watched it for a little bit but just couldn't. Granted it's the last football we will see for a while but it just doesn't do anything for me. I'm more excited to watch the combine that's coming up, especially since the Raiders have a high pick and will need it to revamp a defense that still needs plenty of help.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Picture should be self explanatory, picked it up from the Wizard of Odds as he discussed the rules changes that will probably be implemented next year including coaches challenges for instant replay.

So it's not like we had a deep team before the injuries to Lester Abram and Jerret Smith but now that Dion Harris is hurt as well we are in trouble. That worst case 4-3 scenario I was envisioning would now be a best case scenario and we just need to pick up 3 wins somewhere along the line. Hopefully Lester can give us something this year as he is definitely someone I like to see on the floor. Now the team travels to Purdue and takes on the Boilermakers tomorrow, luckily there will be a good sized Maize and Blue presence as the Maize Rage is heading to the game courtesy of two buses sponsored by Coach Amaker. This game is now a must win after what happened last night but it seems like it's damn near impossible to win a road game in the Big Ten. Someone's gotta step up in Dion's absence but who? Go Blue!

Thursday, February 09, 2006

What's going on? Part 2

First time in a while I wasn't able to make an entry on a weekday, work's really got me working but I was just about to start talking about the rumblings that Coach English was coming back, which started earlier today but it looks like now it's gone from rumor to reality. There were posts elsewhere all across the Michigan sites about this and MGoBlog has a recap. In a very interesting turn of events it looks like Coach English is back, just after the weekend of trying to deal with the potential of losing him it looks like I didn't have to worry about it at all.

Now that the biggest question mark on the staff has now been filled onto basketball where the team will tip off against Ohio State in less than an hour. Lester Abram is still banged up and will not play along with Jerret Smith who is injured as well. With the closing schedule we have, we need to hold serve at home and steal one on the road, most likely we will need to win tonight and then at Purdue on Saturday as well as the home game against Minnesota. I doubt we will win up at East Lansing in a week and then that would leave the closing stretch of Indiana, Illinois at home as well as the road game against Ohio State. I believe this team could finish 5-2 with this stretch but that would be pushing it with all the injuries, I think it's more likely 3-4, maybe 4-3 if we can catch some breaks. Couple that with a good showing in the Big Ten Tourney and it could be a pretty good seed for the squad. We need to hold serve at home and we need to continue doing it. Go Blue!

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

What the hell is going on?

After enjoying the Hines Ward MVP celebration and putting off any panic for a day, I now turn my attention back to Michigan where starting last Friday there were rumblings taking place about coaching changes, but not the ones we wanted or expected. Now changes are far from over and I'm not going to go into the doomsday scenario that many are predicting because I believe something will be done to help the program rather than hurt it, well I hope that is what is going to happen.

What we know so far is Coach Malone who was OC is now the TE coach for the New Orleans Saints, Coach English who was our DB coach and rumored to become the next DC is now the DB coach for the Chicago Bears and Coach DeBord who was Special Teams coach and recruiting coordinator as well as former OC has been given that title again, which is part of the plan we did not want to hear. There are some other moves to still be made and I am going to wait until what happens regarding those before I pass a final judgment on this unlike a majority of people online who are going crazy at this point. If certain things don't happen and stay the same I will be jumping into the same boat with that crew, but until then I'm going to try to stay calm and not worry about it until it happens. There's plenty of time out there right now and if we know that it's due to some interview process or some talks with some big names out there, which I highly doubt but I can hope, then I can wait.

The Lakers continue their disappointing road trip as they conclude with two games against Dallas and Houston. They have been an extremely disappointing 1-4 so far on the trip with two unacceptable losses. Yes Lamar and Chris Mihm are hurt but that was the Bobcats and the Hornets we just played and it doesn't get easier these last two games. I'm hopeful we can pull one out and finish 2-5, because there's no way we're getting both. Knowing how well Kobe plays against Dallas I'd expect a W today followed with a L tomorrow. Ronny Turiaf could be activated soon due to these injuries so at least that would be some welcome help to the bench. We need to get on a roll as the Clippers just have otherwise we'll have no shot to win the division, or at least finish in 2nd cause we can't finish behind the Clippers again can we?

Monday, February 06, 2006

What's up with you now Hines Ward?

I'm Goin to Disney World!!!

While the rest of hte Michigan blogging community starts complaining, and rightfully so, about the coaching moves that have or haven't taken place, I'll leave that alone for another day or two so I can fully get all the information together before I make my statement, please Pittsburgh take Jim Herrmann from us, please. I'd like to stay on a positive note for a day by looking back on yesterday's Super Bowl.

Yes, I agree the officiating did take away from the game but fortunately I avoided the temptation and the +160 ML that Seattle was laying and decided not to bet on the game itself. I hit the +120 on the first score not being a TD, thanks to the horrible offensive PI call on Seattle. But the main reason I'm happy is due to the great game that Hines Ward had. Sure he dropped a TD in the corner of the end zone but he made up for it with other plays yesterday and was named Super Bowl MVP.

Speaking of Super Bowl MVP's, Terry Bradshaw and Joe Montana were not at the pregame ceremony when they honored all past MVP's and that's a shame, especially considering the latest report that it was a dispute over money. That's just ridiculous, especially from Montana who reportedly asked for $100,000 when nearly every other former MVP gladly accepted the NFL's offer. I didn't have much respect for Terry Bradshaw before but I definitely have lost a lot of respect for Joe Montana. For Bradshaw it would have been a great welcome considering how many Steelers fans were at that game, I couldn't believe there were that many terrible towels there and it almost looked like a Steelers home game.

As expected, the basketball team got killed by Iowa on Saturday on the road. Iowa has been unstoppable at home and I really didn't expect to pick up that W on Saturday. The worse news is that Lester Abram is in a boot and will be out for a little bit. The next three games are definitely winnable with Ohio State at home, Purdue on the road followed by Minnesota at home before we head to East Lansing for another matchup with sparty.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Super Bowl and Coaching Changes

The Super Bowl is here this weekend as the Pittsburgh Steelers will take on the Seattle Seahawks in Detroit. I had the idea for this post earlier this week but decided to wait for it but it looks like the guys at The M Zone already beat me to it. So to echo their sentiments I am rooting for Pittsburgh because they have two players from Michigan, Larry Foote and Jerame Tuman, while the Seahawks have one, Steve Hutchinson. Although some may argue that since Hutchinson is a Pro-Bowler they'll take quality over quantity. If you add in practice squad/injured reserve players it is a tie as Pittsburgh has Grant Bowman while the Seahawks have Jeremy LeSeuer and Alain Kashama.

Although it is a tie overall there is another factor that comes into this. No, not Jerome Bettis who the media is constantly talking about because he's coming back home but because my favorite player in the NFL, aside from Charles Woodson plays for Pittsburgh. Kyle King will be probably be glad to hear that it this player is Hines Ward. Sure Hines Ward has become a star in the past few seasons but I have beeen a Hines Ward fan since his days at Georgia, which is a major reason why I root for Georgia against pretty much anyone they play.

Back when I was in high school, Sports Illustrated ran an article on him, I tried searching it through google but I couldn't find it. In that article I found out about him being half-Korean, so that instantly jumped him up my list of favorite athletes as well as being as versatile as he was I became a fan. When he was drafted by the Steelers in the 3rd round I was disappointed he went so late but I was definitely hoping he could have an impact in the league unlike the previous Korean in the league Eugene Chung, 13th overall draft pick by the Patriots. The thing I remember from that SI article the most though was how much he was thankful for his mother for all she did to put him through school and how he said the first thing he would buy with his NFL money was a plane ticket for her so she could go back to Korea. After reading that I was definitely rooting for him to become a star which he has. From the Football Outsiders here's an article they wrote 57 facts about him. He is well known as a great all around receiver who doesn't take plays off and will block for his team whenever he needs to. It was also really cool to read about his tattoo of his name in Korean as well as his upcoming trip to Korea after the Super Bowl this week and I definitely hope he makes the trip to Korea as a World Champion.

In Michigan news it looks like Coach Ron English has been offered the DB coaching position for the Chicago Bears. The question now is will he accept it or not. There is word that he has yet to accept due to the fact that he might be promoted to Defensive Coordinator at Michigan, the Michigan message boards are lighting up over this because he was considered the most likely to take over for Jim Herrmann and if he is gone then it looks as Herrmann may stay at DC which is the last thing any of us want to happen. All that's out there is a bunch of speculation so I'm not getting too caught up in it but losing English would be huge. We'll see how this plays out over the weekend and next week as I don't expect anything to officially take place until after the Super Bowl.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

How can this team be so inconsistent?

The Lakers got embarassed last night 105-79 in Indiana. It was the 3rd game of our season long 7 game road trip and was a 2nd night of a back to back. We have historically never played well in 2nd nights of road back to backs, definitely expected, but to get ran out of the gym by the Pacers who were playing without Jermaine O'Neal, Jamaal Tinsley and Stephen Jackson for a large portion of the game after he got hurt, is just unacceptable. As a team it was the worst shooting performance of the season, almost the worst in Lakers history. No matter the road trip there is no way we can lose the next two games at Charlotte and at New Orleans/Oklahoma City on back to back nights because the two back to backs after that are Dallas and Houston, although Kobe seems to own Dallas.

Onto the positive the Michigan basketball team got another win, this time on the road at Penn State as they held on for a 71-65 win over the Nittany Lions. Dion Harris was on fire from outside as he hit 7 trey's to lead the team with 23 points. Daniel Horton didn't have as good of a game from a shooting standpoint but he did have a career high 12 assists so he was definitely contributing, unlike Courtney Sims who was once again non-existent with 2 points on 1 of 6 shooting.

Speaking of basketball news there was a commitment this week that was overshadowed when Jai Eugene decommitted and stayed home for LSU. Kelvin Grady, the younger brother of RB Kevin Grady committed as a PG for Coach Amaker with the possibility of playing both sports, as he held offers from Michigan and Michigan State for football. He joins Alex Legion as a member of the 2007 class for basketball at a definite position of need as Jerret Smith will be the only pure PG on the roster when he comes in.

Other football news has to deal with a conference opponent as Wisconsin has dismissed RB Booker Stanley. He was the leading candidate to take over for Brian Calhoun as he left early for the NFL. This should be a blow to the Badgers who will most likely turn to last year's 3rd string back Jamil Walker as the starter, after last year's debacle at Madison, I can't wait to play them again this season.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

What a month

The Lakers finished out the month of January with a 130-97 win over the New York Knicks. The month of Kobe ended with a 40 point effort, which was below his 43.4 per game average for the entire month. He did most of his damage from the line as he went 23 of 26 while only going 7 of 17 from the field. It was the typical performance expected of Kobe of late so there's nothing much else to say since he's been that ridiculous this month. The talk of the game would be the play of Andrew Bynum. Bynum had the game of his career so far as he got to play quite a bit due to the blowout. He played 12 minutes and had 16 points on 7 of 7 shooting from the floor. I was unable to watch the game but from what I've heard, he dominated Eddy Curry and embarassed the Knicks which was great to hear. After seeing his move against Shaq and hearing yesterday's reviews I'm very excited to see Bynum as he develops and I think he can be the force that the Laker front office believed he could be when they drafted him. We'll see how tonight turns out in the second night of a back to back on the road trip as we still have 5 games left on this trip along with two more back to back's as well.

Signing Day is here

Signing Day is completely different than it was even a few years ago, you look at the front page of espn.com and there's Myron "I'm going to Florida State for academics" Rolle. Rivals radio is going all day strong, and message boards are packed and slow because of all the traffic, a far cry from when I first started following. There are usually two camps on signing day, there's the people like me who care a great deal about it, follow it closely throughout the year and consider signing day a national holiday. Then there are those in the camp that don't care about signing day, say that rankings don't matter it only matters what they do on the field. This camp does have a point when you look at numerous players that were lightly recruited, if at all, making an impact across the country. However, for me anyways, following recruiting is so much fun because it just makes college football what it is, a true year round event.

Casual fans of the game will stop following until the next summer but for the psychos like me we follow recruiting to help pass the time. It's sad to say 17 and 18 year old kids decision on where to play their college football affects me but it does, not as much as it used to since I do now know we'll miss out more than we will hit on but still, I'd be lying if I didn't tell you that when Jai Eugene decommitted it put a dent in my day. Anyways, like I've mentioned before this is the first year that I can ever remember that we have closed so strong. Usually our class is wrapped up by the time signing day comes around but this year we had recruits we were waiting for and for once they actually decided to sign with us.

MGoBlue has the article up as of right now all 19 LOI's are in and accounted for. We missed out on Corey Peters who decided to stay close to home at Kentucky but we added Jason Kates and Jonas Mouton, two big pickups at the last minute and I'm definitely glad to add, especially Mouton considering he is at a position of need S and he is a California kid. In all we've got kids from 13 different states which is great considering our down year but also based on need because the state of Michigan didn't have that many high caliber recruits, that will change as next year's class is loaded especially at CB, a definite need.