Thursday, June 26, 2008

The Olympics: A Closer Looks At The Events

Everyone knows there has been a lot of controversy surrounding the Beijing Olympics, but no one is focused on the real problem with the International games. If you are like most Americans you probably don’t follow that closely, but still get disappointed when you find out we didn’t win gold in every event. That being said, besides the main events that get a lot of airtime i.e. Swimming, Track (particularly the 100) and popular American’ sports like basketball do you really know why are medal count is so high? Does anyone really know all the sports included in the games or for that matter which ones are not included?

Since the Olympics began in 1896 the United States has won Summer Gold 895 times and 78 in the Winter. That is a total of 973 total gold medals, the next closest country is the Soviet Union with 473 (and no I don’t mean Russia they sit at 14th with 119). Take a step further and combine three medal totals and we sit at 2405 lifetime, with the Soviets in a distant second at 1204. I bring this up because once again the world, specifically the International Olympic Committee, has begun to turn on the United States.

The 2008 Beijing Games will be the last time that baseball and softball will be included. The IOC has voted to eliminate the sports starting in the 2012 London Olympics because it was deemed “too American for the International Stage”. It becomes the first sport eliminated since Polo was ousted in 1936. There were three sports on the table for elimination with the Modern Pentathlon being the only sport to maintain its place in the games.

There are 28 Sports at Beijing and there will be 26 in London as I stated above. Try to think of 26 sports, some of you will have trouble, some of you will begin to name absolutely obscure competitions. Now if you made it to 26 how many of those would you like to see people competing for a Gold medal in? There are many competitions and athletic activities that are completely valid on their own, but do not have that Olympic feel or international prestige that the IOC so desperately wants.

Baseball has been recognized since the 92’ Barcelona Games. In the four Olympics it was recognized the U.S has 1 Gold and 1 Bronze. I wouldn’t exactly call that American domination. Ask Cuba though they have 3 Golds and 1 Silver.

Lets take a look at where we can make some cuts to make room for Baseball/Softball, or at least be American and take away sports other countries enjoy because they took away something for us.

Starting with Swimming and Diving competitions (Aquatics), I completely endorse all team and individual events. On the other hand Water Polo and Synchronized swimming are included and of the two I have to cut synchronized swimming. It comes down to the fact that there have been 18 countries to medal in Water Polo where Synchronized swimming has only had 5 countries on the podium (U.S, Canada, Russia, Japan, & France).

Next we move on to Cycling. Keep Road and Track competitions, but Mountain should be looked at closely. However, if we make a cut from this section of the games it should be BMX. They scored some points with me by not including freestyle events like snowboarding in the Winter Games, but traditional BMX racing? Over Baseball? Note: Beijing is the first time it will be recognized, good trade IOC.

Other Sports that should be up for vote before baseball and softball:
Rhythmic Gymnastics: CUT immediately, if you want to see this go to 4th Ave. here in Tucson or a Rave. You know what is the same as this ‘sport’ ? Fire Twirling, only it adds an element of danger.
Trampoline: Is it just me or isn’t this what Gymnasts do to train for the floor event? If you allow this and not baseball maybe you will consider adding Batting Cages to the lineup.

Martial Arts: Judo, Taekwondo. I have respect for these athletes, but my issue is why these two disciplines? How can you add certain disciplines without giving credit to others? Do the jujitsu people get pissed watching them win medals?

Next Up: Table Tennis! Yes, it is fun and yes these guys are incredible. I mean you don’t see many guys in the garage playing like this. If this is in then why isn’t billiards, darts or any other bar/ basement game? I know that we are trying to make it more international and less ‘American”, but China is only place on the planet where they play this game.

Sports that should be in:

Cricket : Arguably the second most popular sport in the World. Cricket was an official sport only for the 1900 Games.
Rugby: They have tried it multiple times over the years. It has been cancelled numerous times, and even brought back in 7’s form. I understand not playing Football, it is unrealistic and definitely an American Sport, but Rugby’s exclusion is unwarranted.
Golf : Recognized for the 1900’ and 1904’ games. I think it is about time we brought it back on the international stage don’t you think?

I know this has been long winded, but I have never really seen anyone look at what events people are actually competing in. In conjunction with that is the idea that there is no real explanation for why these decisions are made and they are hardly publicized. I think it is a shame they are taking away baseball and blaming it on being too American. I think the IOC needs to be looked at more carefully, and further explanation needs to be given regarding their decisions.

Also note that this is the same committee that recognizes powerboating, orienteering and chess as official sports, but do not include them in the Olympic Games. Somewhere Bobby Fisher is rolling over in his grave.

4Real Out….
More after the jump...

Number 23

Jim Carrey made a movie about it a few years ago. It was a very good psychological thriller and while I don't know where it was filmed I can only assume Chicago. If you are unaware Carrey's character Walter Sparrow is seeing the Number 23 everywhere he looks and finds a hidden meaning to the point that it drives him absolutely insane. It was one of the many movies that I feel would only have improved with the addition of more sports references.

For example Sparrow, starts freaking out and seeing the Number 23 everywhere so he decides to try and clear his mind by taking his son to a Bears game versus the Broncos on a Sunday night and then this happens:

Still convinced the number is haunting and following him everywhere they leave after the come from behind win led by Hester's TDs and see crowds of Hester jerseys everywhere. Sparrow starts to calm down. They hop on the Eisenhower to head home. On the way home Sparrow's son wants to swing by Moretti's on the West Loop. So they get off the Eisenhower and, while lost and looking for Moretti's, the car gets a flat tire, right in front of the United Center. Sparrow looks up and sees:
This again brings Sparrow into a crazed fervor. He and his son get in the car and he speeds as fast as he can back to their family home in Lincoln Park. On the way they pass through Wrigleyville. He looks up at the Right Field Foul Pole at Wrigley and sees:

Now obviously this is a little extreme and really just an intro for the thought that came to my mind earlier. Chicago is a great sport city, like it or not, and isn't it just a little odd that 3 of the city's top historical players on their 3 historical teams all wore the same number? It could also be said that the White Sox Jermaine Dye is a top performer on the city's other team. Which leads me to this thought, has this ever happened in any other city? Are there any other instances of Franchise/Hall of Fame/Potential HoF players wearing the same number in the same city? Same time, different time, doesn't matter. At least 3 occurrences, in 3 of the 4 major sports.
Is this the only occurrence or am I oblivious to another instance of such an oddity.

More after the jump...

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Bradshaw & Steelers: Two Decades of Steroid Abuse

I am of tired of hearing about steroids in sports as a person can possibly be, but the most recent former athlete to come forward really got me thinking. Hall of Fame Quarterback Terry Bradshaw admitted to taking ‘steroids’ in the 70s. I have a couple of problems with this. First steroids have dominated the media, we are now even concerned about it in horse racing. There is not a day that goes by where you are not constantly reminded of the scandals and controversies associated with it. Beyond the redundant nature of the coverage associated with these stories is the fact that Bradshaw has now fueled the fire with a very vague admittance of his use. To those in the general public meaning those not in the medical field, those who have not played sports at a competitive level, and those who are not particularly knowledgeable with either of those fields the connotation of the word Steroids is a kiss of death. During Bradshaw’s comments on his use he stated

We did steroids to get away the aches and the speed of healing. My use of steroids from a doctor was to speed up injury, and thought nothing of it… It was to speed up the healing process, that was it. It wasn’t to get bigger and stronger and faster.

That is where we get into the differences between anabolic steroids and corticosteroids. To break it down easily and quickly in layman’s terms: Anabolic Steroids are most commonly related to hormones specifically testosterone. They effect protein which in turns helps one build cell mass especially in muscles. Hence performance enhancing, cheating, bigger, stronger, faster, ect. Corticosteroids on the other hand help with such thing as response to stress, inflammation, and immune systems. They are used for a wide variety medical treatments and are administered in a variety of ways. Cortisone is a form of these steroids that are used regularly in professional sports and more importantly are not illegal/banned. They would take care of the getting away from aches part, but the long term effects actually hurt the athlete. I would delve further, but that would be going to far for my particular point.

Terry Bradshaw was a great athlete, is a great commentator, and a seemingly good person. The second problem I have with this story is that the lack of clarification of what he took is disturbing considering the effects that anabolic steroids had on the rest of his teammates. According to an article written by on CBS Sports 34 former Steelers players have passed away since 2000, with 16 of them being under the age of 59 (8 in their 50’s. 5 in their 40’s, 2 in their 30’s) . Seven of those 34 were linked to ‘heart problems’. This story goes on and on, with reports of attempted suicides, heart failures, partial brain damage, ect. I hate to add Bradshaw on a list of former Steelers who have allegedly lost their lives due to the steroid use in the 70’s and 80’s, but he needs to be more careful and much clearer about his use. If not only because of how sensitive the steroid issue is on a whole today, but out of respect and consideration for fellow teammates who have \suffered far worse fates.

4Real Out...
More after the jump...

Tiger's DNA for Sale

Perhaps you have heard the news. Tiger Woods' Apple Core is being sold on EBay to some lucky winner. On the 16th hole of the U.S Open playoff Tiger Calmly bit into an apple, then came back from being down one to force a Sudden Death ending to his 18 hole playoff with Rocco Mediate. He played in one of the greatest Opens of all time on a bum leg and is now on the shelf for the rest of the year. Amazing tournament, that led to the lowest work production across the county in years. He ended up winning there, all because of a single apple. The single greatest sports memoribila item EVER.

Here's my problem with it. Look closely at the following three screencaps (all of which can be clicked on to blow up):

Three separate Apple Cores are up for auction ranging from 10 dollars to 100 dollars. Someone is getting ripped off here. One of the cores has sold for $40.00. The Winning Bidder was meckhart8u7o. I just hope for the sake of the Golf world the Mr. Meckhart isn't really this guy:

More after the jump...

Monday, June 23, 2008

Pinella vs. Guillen: Battle Rap

Interleague play is here and I for one love seeing match ups between the conferences. Dom has posted on the redline series which pits two of baseball’s top teams against each other for bragging rights in the Windy City. What makes it even better is that they are managed by two of the biggest characters in the game in Ozzie Guillen and Lou Pinella. No one gets more heated, uses more expletives, or gets thrown out of more games than these two. Unfortunately I stumbled across this commercial which does nothing to help their street credit.

4Real Out...
More after the jump...

2009 has started with a bang

The University of Arizona Basketball team has added its' first member to the recruiting class of 2009. 6-foot-8, 225 lbs Center, Greg Smith from Eidson HS in Fresno, CA. Smith is the 7th rated Center and the 34th rated player overall in the class of 2009 by the recruiting services. Smith is a top tier talent at a position of need for the Wildcats. Jordan Hill's expected departure to the NBA next season leaves a glaring hole in the middle and Smith is the kind of prospect needed to fill that hole. The most interesting note in the recruiting process of Smith is that he is from the same High school as incoming football recruit and HS All-American, Robert Golden. It should be known that Golden provided a lot of "input" during the recruitment of what some describe as one of his best-buddies. This situation is a very positive turn of events for the much maligned program. We are still waiting for the Brandon Jennings to clear up(more on that later) and the Abdul Gaddy decommitment has us worrying. It seems as though the new coaching staff has really turned up theheat and despite the world saying otherwise it would seem that the Silver Fox still has a little left in the tank. I expect at least one if not two more commitments from blue chip players in the next few weeks, so stay tuned and Bear Down.

More after the jump...

Cleveland Gladiators Year In Review

The Cleveland Gladiators have finished their Inaugural season by clinching a berth in the 2008 AFL playoffs. Finishing with a 9-7 record in regular season play they have locked the 4th seed in the National Conference. The Gladiators started off strong going 3-0 to start the season with some good momentum. The great start is especially noteworthy considering the previous year the Gladiators, then playing in Las Vegas, finished their season with a 2-14 record. Head coach Mike Wilpolt might have had a lot to do with it, but he had a helping hand from a good squad that continued to play above expectations all season.

After the big start Cleveland would drop their next three games moving back to .500. These losses included one to a good Dallas Desperados team (3 seed in National Conference), and a match up that was hyped as Bernie Kosar’s Gladiators versus John Elway’s Colorado Crush. After splitting the next two games ( Win against LA Avengers and Loss against New York Dragons) Cleveland saw another three game winning streak. Moving into the final 4 weeks of the season Wilpolt’s squad was sitting at 7-5 in the Eastern Division which is undoubtedly the toughest in the AFL. This is how the Gladiators finished out their season:

Vs. Dallas Desperados: 3rd in National Conference, 2nd in Eastern Division (12-4): L 68-52
Vs. Chicago Rush: 1st in American Conference, 1st in Central Division (11-5): W 65-44
@ Philadelphia Soul: 1st in National Conference, 1st in Eastern Division (13-3): L 62-21
Vs. Columbus Destroyers: The Battle of the Buckeye State, Last Years Runner up in Arena Bowl (3-13): W 47-35

It bodes well for the Gladiators that they finished out strong with a couple key wins to clinch a playoff spot. The most important of the final weeks coming from the victory over the Rush who is the American Conference’s top team. Equally as important was the effort against the Soul on the road in which one point was the difference against the best team in the AFL.

The Key to success will be an offense that has been very fluid all season. Raymond Philyaw has been great behind the helm posting the second best passer rating this season with 124.5. He threw for 4287 yards on 358 completions (68.2%) for 83 Touchdowns to only 10 interceptions. As always his two favorite targets will be Robert Redd and Amey Otis who both cracked the top ten in receiving this year with Otis claiming the top spot in touchdowns with 50. One of the most unsung heroes for the Gladiators will be Marlion Jackson who claimed the AFL Rushing title with 356 yards on the season. The running game is one of the most overlooked aspects of the fast paced Arena game, and Jackson will be a huge asset during the playoffs.

On the defensive side of the ball DB Brandon Hefflin will have to come up big. In his third year in the league he posted a team high 110 tackles, 89 of which were solo along with 2 INTs. He will without a doubt have to step up in a leadership role for other defensive standouts such as Rookie DB Alex Teems who posted the second highest tackle numbers with 82.5.

Monday June 30th will see the Gladiators (9-7 3rd in Eastern Division) moving into the first round of Wild Card play against the Orlando Predators (9-7 2nd in Southern Division). These teams met one time during the regular season where the Gladiators came out on top 62-43.

Quick Match Up Rankings (Overall in AFL)

Defense: Gladiators 2nd, Predators 10th
Rushing: Gladiators 3rd, Predators 8th
Passing: Gladiators 2nd, Predators 10th
Kicking: Gladiators 8th, Predators 10th

All in all the Gladiators match up well on paper, but I would not be looking to the next round just yet. It should be a good game and you can catch it on ESPN2 a week from today.

4Real Out….
More after the jump...

Chicago's Un-Civil War

Wrapping up this weekend's event we saw one of the great rivalries in sports. I'll admit the first couple years of interleague play it was a made for TV event. Cub fans didn't care about the Sox and the same was true of Sox fans. The Cub fans were much, much happier watching the Cubs take down the Red Birds in the Lou than watching them defeat their southern bretheren. Then something happened. Everyone expected a rivalry that wasn't there. Then after a couple years when the Second City Series/Red Line series was in full effect a rivalry was born.

Fans happening down on Wrigleyville this weekend were witnesses to a very large party. The Friday night postgame celebrations on Addison St. in Chicago's Northside was described by WGN's Bob Brenly, the albeit slightly biased voice of the Cubs, as a mix between New Years, the Super Bowl, and Mardi Gras. Cubs fans refused to leave the stadium after Aramis Ramirez's walk off in the bottom of the 9th. These are the fans that love to sip on the warm Old Style, and they stop selling in the 7th. Despite that fact, the fans still packed the stadium soaking it up.

So the fans are in on it now, they bought into the rivalry. What about the rest of the sports world? Well Sunday night's game was the ESPN Sunday Night Baseball event. Next weekend when they renew the interleague play Saturday's game will be on FOX and Sunday's on ESPN. So the fans are on board, the media is on board. But what about the teams?

This weekend both teams added fuel to the fire that has been burning. On the White Sox side it sounded like this:

"The rats look bigger than a pig out there. You want to take a look? I think the rats out there are lifting weights." - Ozzie Guillen, Big Mouthed Manager

"They're idiots. It's like what Lee Elia said: 'Eighty-five percent of the people work, the other [bleeps] come out here.'" - A.J. Pierzynski, A-Hole Catcher

"Try not to smell all the urine over there ... That place is a [bleep] hole," - John Danks, No Name Pitcher

"[Cubs CF, Jim Edmonds] just had a good day, I don't want to promote the guy who's just hitting .218. He just had a good day." - Guillen again. Edmonds had just hit 2 HRs to help in the 2nd straight defeat of the Sox, was actually hitting .238 on the season, and is hitting .311 with 5 jacks since coming to Chicago, he had a slow start and no Spring Training.

So that's what the White Sox manager and players had to say about the Cubs Sox series. Of course the Cubs players and manager had to reply, so what did Cubs players and managers have to say?
"4 Hits, 4 Runs, 1 RBI, 1 Walk, 1 HBP, .363" - Kosuke Fukudome, Cub Outfielder
"4 Hits, 1 Run, .363" - Ryan Theriot, Cub Shortstop
"5 Hits, 4 Runs, 1 HR, 4 RBIs, 2 Walks, .417" - Derrick Lee, Cub First Baseman
"2 Hits, 2 Runs, 2 HRs, 2 RBIs, 2 Walks, and 1 Intentional Walk, .285" - Jim Edmonds, Cub Outfielder
"1 Hit, 1 Run, 1 HR, 1 RBI, .500" - Mike Fontenot Cub Infielder
"5 Hits, 5 Runs, 1 HR, 3 RBIs, 2 Walks, .625" - Eric Patterson, Cub Callup Outfielder hitting .143 prior to the series.
"6 Hits, 4 Runs, 4 HRs, 8 RBIs, 1 Walk, .462" - Aramis Ramirez, Cub Third Baseman
"3 Wins" - Cubs Starting Pitchers
And of course the Ying to Ozzie's Yang Manager Lou Piniella, ""Put it this way: I've only been in town a year and a half, and I certainly enjoy the competition against the White Sox, but I don't go crazy over it. I respect their team and respect their organization, but I just do what's best for the Chicago Cubs in my mind. I'll let it go at that. That's all I can do." He's 8-1 against the Southsiders in his Tenure as Cubs Manager.

Now I let myself get into the series a little bit and got excited and realized something prior to Friday's game. This series is similar to the Civil War. North versus South, Right versus Wrong, Good versus Evil, Classy versus Classless, Civilized versus Uncivilized. Much like the Civil War, the North won. Also, as with the Civil War, in history's rearview mirror those that cheered on the South will be ashamed and those who continue to cheer for the south after the fact will have less teeth and far less education.

More after the jump...

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Can you win the team tittle without a team?

As reported on Bonnie Richardson won the girls 1A(smallest school division) Track and Field State Championship Team Tittle for the '08 season just a few weeks ago BY HERSELF. Bonnie was one of three ladies on her squad and the only one to qualify for the state meet. She qualified in five events and made the trip to Austin with just her coach by her side. "On the first of the competition's two days, Richardson won the high jump (5-foot-5), placed second in the long jump (18-7) and third in the discus (121 feet). On Day 2 she won the 200-meter dash in 25.03 seconds and finished second in the 100 at 12.19. She wasn't able to compete in a single relay, usually the difference-maker in team competition....After the relays, the result became official: Rochelle ("Bonnie") tallied 42 points, enough to squeak past second-place Chilton's 36."

How amazing is this feat?

I can not for a moment fathom this happening at any level of athletics. Seriously, I wonder how bad the other teams had to be to see this result.

More after the jump...

The 10 most selfish athletes in professional sports.

Bonnie Richardson's accomplishments as mentioned in my previous post has me thinking about a lot of players in today's pro sports and how much happier they would be without their team and teammates taking some of the spotlight. I thought I'd compose a list of the 10 most selfish professional athletes in homage to this young ladies amazing accomplishment(s).

10. Ron Artest - Sacramento Kings

In spite of his abilities, Artest has been the subject of much controversy. During his early years, he was subject to criticism for numerous antics including applying for a job at Circuit City, just to get an employee discount, attending Pacers practice in a bath robe, and asking for a month off because he was "tired" from promoting an album on his Lable. For this one he got a nice little suspension. Other suspensions for Artest came for destroying a TV camera at MSG, and again for a confrontation with Pat Riley. He has seen the league's heavy hand in suspensions for numerous Flagrant fouls. Oh, and then there was a little fight in Detroit where he missed the remainder of the season. Not just a bad teammate but apparently a bad pet owner there was, allegedly, a pre-seizure notice on his home to remove Artest's Great Dane due to lack of food. He was also picked up on Domestic Abuse Charges in 2007 that led to his "excuse" from the Kings organization until he basically learned to behave himself. He even started the most recent season on the bench serving a suspension.

Oh, and did I mention the fight...

9. Shea Hillenbrand - On a ranch in Gilbert, AZ

Arizona boy Hillenbrandhad started a brief yet promising career in Boston. Until of course 2003 when trade rumors surfaced and he went on a Boston area sports radio show to call Theo Epstein, Red Sox GM, a Faggot. Classy. He bounced around a little bit and looked to be resurging. In 2005, his first year with the Blue Jays, Hillenbrand hit .291 with 18 home runs and 82 RBI over 152 games, while splitting time between 1B, 3B, and DH. In July of 2006, Hillenbrand was becoming sour in Toronto due to lack of PT and sharing time with Lyle Overbay (1B) and Troy Glaus (3B) and even having the Gaul to make him a DH. There are differing accounts but the message was the same. After a game he and Manger John Gibbons got into it and Hillenbrand wrote on the team whiteboard something to the effect of "This is a Sinking Ship" and "Play for yourselves" He was designated for assignment that day and a couple days later traded to the G-Men in SF. Hillenbrand signed a one year contract with LA in December of 06, he was designated for assignment before July, a day after being quoted as saying, "If I'm not going to play here, give me enough respect to trade me or get rid of me." About a week later thanks to that statement and the emergence of Reggie Willitis and Casey Kotchman, Hillenbrand was waived by the Angels destined to live in his Gilbert AZ ranch with his mini horses, tortoises and random other animals.

8. Keyshawn Johnson - Retired WR, TV Analyst

The Author more commonly known as a Wide Receiver decided, after just one season in the NFL, that included 63 catches, decided to write a book entitled Just Give Me the Damn Ball!. He makes it to number 8 on this list just based strictly on the strength of his book title and his early selfish antics at times. Apparently the book isn't as focused on the subject of getting that ball as one might assume based on the book title, but I haven't read it and have no interest in doing so. In fact in his later years in Carolina he was highly touted as a good teammate. On an awesome side note, he once said, "If you have a problem with Keyshawn Johnson, then you have a problem with yourself."

7. Kobe Bryant - LA Lakers

Number 8 is one of the most selfish players in the game. In the 4 years since fellow superstar Shaq left the Lake Show after being forced out in Kobe's him or me ultimatum Kobe has led the NBA in Field Goals Attempted 3 years. The only exception, 2004-2005 Season he only attempted 1324 shots, but only played in 66 games. In exactly 0 of those seasons The Black Mamba finished inside of the Top 30 in FG%. His Career FG% of .453 isn't in the top 300 of all time either. He's also 80th in career TO ratio as well. He is the quintessential me-first player. The only reason he isn't higher is based on the fact that at (granted a very few) times it is necessary for him to be me-first, and he is the top player on his team.

6. Vince Carter - New Jersey Nets

I'm not going to lie. I used to love Vince Carter. He was one of my favorite ballers back in the day. I can remember watching his Unreal Slam Dunk Contest with the rest of the Freshman Basketball team. I loved him, Antawn, Williams, and Cota back in the day in Chapel Hill. With all of that said, he is one of the most selfish players in the game. Famous more now for his pouting and quiting on his team than his old high flying antics. After achieving immediate success and accolades in Toronto he was the future, then he got frustrated with some unfulfilled front office promises, started slacking, quiting, and even unsubstantiated rumors that he gave away plays to opposing teams to sabotage the Raptors. He eventually got the trade he was gunning for and went to New Jersey. Carter enjoyed the new scenery and thrived in New Jersey. After a couple successful years in New Jersey there were rumblings of a Holland Tunnel exchange to the Knicks after Carter opted out but he eventually re-signed with the Nets.
5. Ricky Williams - Toronto Argonauts, Miami Dolphins, I think

Ricky Marley is one of the top selfish athletes. It all started with his draft into the league. He was drafted by the New Orleans Saints. The Saints traded their ENTIRE draft, picks in every round, for Williams on the strength of his Heisman Campaign in Austin. Now that is not his fault; What was his fault was his choice to continue, after numerous warnings to stop, smoking the Hippie Lettuce. After, yet another failed drug test in 2004, he quit to become a Holistic Massage Therapist rather than face a fine and suspension. Unfortunately he owed quite a bit of money to the Fins that they had paid him to play. So he returned to Organized football in Miami to play out his contract. in 2005. By mid-season he tested positive, again, for the Cheeba weed and sat out the 2006 season at the behest of the NFL.

4. Jamarcus Russell - Oakland Raiders

The 2007 First overall pick was an exciting prospect for Raider fans. After years of fumbling through quarterbacks (Duante Culpepper, Andrew Walter, Aaron Brooks, Kerry Collins, Rich Gannon, and even Rick Mirer at one point) they finally had a guy the size of a linebacker, who wouldn't/couldn't go down and could launch the ball down field. Only problem was he didn't see the field until week 3. And no I don't mean that was his first game experience I mean he didn't sign a contract with the team until mid-September thus didn't practice with them until that point. Failing to reach a contract agreement with the Raiders, Russell held out through training campe and the first weeks of the 2007 NFL Season until September 12, when he signed a six-year contract worth up to $68 million, a league rookie record with $31.5 million guaranteed. When did the rookie finally see the field? The 2nd quarter of week 13. Then in this past off season, according to Don Banks of SI, Russell has ballooned to over 300lbs. My guess is his pockets were the heaviest part of his body.

3. Chad Johnson - Nasty Nati Bungles
Ocho Cinco started off the 2007 off season on the ESPN Radio show Mike and Mike in the morning, by saying, "I was labeled selfish and a cancer, and it hurt...Fingers were pointed at me this year. If the team and the organization wants to further itself, I think you need to get rid of the problem...It hurt me." After being hurt by the fingers pointed and the people calling him selfish, he proceeded to continue to be a lighting rod for the next 5 months, less than a month later there were rumblings that he would sit out the entirety of the 2008 season. Exactly one month later Ocho Cinco made the public statement of "Call me Dan". Not that he's looking for yet another nickname, he meant, "Hey Dan Snyder, rich owner of the 'Skins, make a trade for me". The following month he told Best Damn that he wanted to play for the Cowboys. Then in April, he said he wanted to be traded before the Draft. Recently he has said he will appear at the mini-camp and will honor his contract. How this plays out will show just how high or low Ocho Cinco will ultimately land on this list. Regardless he is constantly needing the spotlight.

2. Latrell "I'll Choke you too" Sprewell - Retired or unwanted -

We should start with the Choking incident as a way to set a base line of Mr. Sprewell's reputation. Back in '97 when he was a 4 time All-Star and team leader of the Warriors he decided to go Sprewell on Head Coach PJ Carelsimo threatening to kill him and tackled him to the ground by his throat attempting to choke the life out of him until teammates pried him off. His second attack on PJ also ended in pain, but he was again pulled away by teammates. Team Leader misses 68 games, selfish. He bounced around (New York and Minnesota) and actually appeared to turn his career around returning to the All-Star game and garnering accolades in Minnesota with Garnett and Cassell, then the Wolves offered him 3yr/$21 million which was apparently nothing because he vented stating that "I have a family to feed." He turned down the contract and refused to accept any of the offers out there because they were, a level beneath which [Sprewell] would not stoop or kneel!". I guess he was right about those financial problems. Recently his boat was repossessed and auctioned off.

1. Cedric Benson - Unsigned Free Agent

Another highly touted Austin Running Back on the list, Cedric held out through almost the entire preseason of his rookie season and was never able to get in line with the Bears organization. Also, based on This Article last week, where Benson was deemed selfish. In all honesty he takes number one based on the recent indiscretions of "me-first" thinking, DUI/BWI transgressions and of course his infamous Heisman Candidacy speech in which he said, "If I could win the game entirely by myself – both offense and defense, punt returns, kickoffs, kicking field goals, do everything – then I'd take the win over OU," Benson said. "But for me personally, the hard work I've been through, growing up as a kid and the dream I've had, I'd love nothing more than to win the Heisman."Thus he basically said he would rather be sans team (which luckily for him he is now). Class Act buddy. And definitely, by his own admission, the most selfish Athlete around.

Matt Randle El and Dom

More after the jump...

Monday, June 16, 2008

Wang's Injury Spells Trouble For Rotation

Chien-Ming Wang is the next addition to the list of problems plaguing the Yankees Rotation Troubles. Wang injured his foot on Sunday while running the bases during interleague play against the Astros. He said that he heard a “pop” and left the game. Reports now say that he will be in a cast in boot for nearly 6 weeks due to a sprained foot and ligament as well as a partially torn tendon. That puts him at a return of almost 10 weeks, but the Yankees official site says that it may be a season ending injury.

As if losing their Ace wasn’t enough they have already moved Chamberlain up into the rotation to fill an already existing gap this season. The Yankees find themselves in trouble, and we should see them looking to the pool of available players as quickly as possible. For now Dan Giese will be filling in the 5th spot of the rotation. Rumors are already flying to as who the Yanks will be looking to court and it appears that they have their eyes on Cleveland. Where it is purely speculation at this point the long term solution may be throwing money at C.C Sabathia when he becomes a free agent. It appears as though New York management think passing on making C.C an offer will be a lot like passing on a bidding war with Santana. Another rumor flying is that a release of Paul Byrd may be a possibility in the next two weeks which the Yanks might jump on as a quick fix. Needless to say there will be some moves being made shortly and should be interesting to see how it pans out.

4Real Out...
More after the jump...

Welcome Back Chase

Ahhhhhhh.....sweet sweet relief. Sources Close to the U of A are saying that Chase Budinger has faxed his withdrawl from the draft form into the NBA as of 2 pm Tucson time.

We should take a moment and thank Chase's unsigned manager for scheduling workouts with teams in the lottery before the withdrawl date. Chase Budinger wanted a guarantee that he would be selected in the the top 20 in order to stay in the draft...since the lottery teams were not seriously looking at him in the top 10 slots he never got that guarantee. Today was the deadline and had Chase stayed in the draft he would have had workouts with teams in the 15-25 range for the next few weeks....Sometimes anothers mistake is really our gain

Also we should note that Chase's dad Duncan Budinger wanted Chase to stay in the NBA badly. It's nice to see the young man make a logical desicion even in the face of that kind of opposition, here's hoping that happens on the court next year also.

Meanwhile Nic Wise (left with Budinger in a game against Oregon) is stoked and was heard telling some people around McKale this past week that Chase Budinger coming back was never in question...The two of them instantly give us credible leaders on and off the floor next year.

Jennings should know his new SAT scores somewhere around the 26th of June...To Bad that is not the only issue...We should know more next week, but Chase Budinger staying helps.

Matt"Antione MF Cason Scootsie" Randle El

More after the jump...

Sunday, June 15, 2008

AFL Update: Rattlers Money Back Guarantee Pays Off

So I think I made it to week three of AFL recaps before losing sight of my goal to become a legitimate Arena fan. That being said I am sure most of you skimmed over those articles anyways and forgot about it all together. That is why with about two weeks to go in the season I’ll give you a quick update for Arizona’s own Indoor football team.

As you may recall the Rattlers organization made a guarantee to their fans that they would give a 100% refund to their season ticket holders if they didn’t make the playoffs. Well they can breath a sigh of relief as they have clinched a berth with an 8-6 record with two left to play. They are currently sitting in 2nd place behind the defending arena bowl champion San Jose Sabrecats (10-5) in the American Conference’s Western Division. Besides the pressure of the wager and the fact that it is Head Coach Kevin Guy’s first season the Rattlers were sitting on a record of 4-6 with the playoffs seemingly out of reach. Then all of a sudden something sparked and the squad started closing out the close games they had been dropping all season. They were coming off back to back losses when they faced the Dallas Desperados (currently 12-3 and tied with Philadelphia Soul for best record in the AFL) where they came away with a 55-54 upset. Next up was a sub par Grand Rapids Rampage team who they also narrowly beat out 52-48, followed by a 60-53 win over a good Orlando Predators team. Then last Sunday (Jun 8th) the rattlers faced the Kansas City Brigade and a chance to clinch a playoff berth. Arizona showed up in a big way setting records for most point in a half (49) and most points in a quarter (36) giving them their biggest margin of victory all season with the 73-34 win.

The Rattlers are heading in to the last two games of their season with some serious momentum and are facing match ups against Colorado Rush (4-10) and Utah Blaze (5-10). Arizona should be able to take both of these games if they keep on their game. If that is the case, and San Jose loses their final game to the Georgia Force (10-5) they will be tied for the top spot in the western division. Not too shabby for a team that had a long way to go to make a playoff spot.

Later this week I will give a run down on the Cleveland Gladiators season and playoff chances before giving a playoff preview so check back.

4Real Out….
More after the jump...

Friday, June 13, 2008

Top Ten Play With Pain Moments

The 3rd most talked about moment of the 2008 NBA Finals, behind Tim Donaghy (2) and the 2002 Western Conference Finals (1), was Paul Pierce being taken off the floor in what, as it seemed at the time, was a season ending injury. Pierce, who at one time nearly died due to stab wounds, shook off everything and missed only about 94 seconds of actual game time to return and lead his team to the W. This isn't the first time we've seen something like this on a grand stage. This is not broken down just on the severity of the injury but also on the impact. For instance a regular season injury doesn't have the same effect as the post-season, Game 1 doesn't have the same impact of Game 6, and so one. So let's break down the Top Ten, but we've got a problem. Does Pierce fit on the all-time Top Ten list? We'll have to see.

10. Curt Schilling - Boston Red Sox
Game 2 of the 2004 World Series
Schilling got the win for the Sox against the Cards. This is no different then many of the other games the Cy Young runner up did all season, except for the minor fact that in Game 1 of the ALDS he injured his tendon. In both the ALCS and, more famously, Game 2 of the Series the sutures in Schilling's ankle tore and his sock was red from blood. Despite this he managed to pitch for the Win and help give Boston its first World Series championship since 1918. The only reason this isn't any higher is the speculation that has since come of the sock.
9. Byron Leftwich, Steve Sciullo, Steve Paretta -Marshall Herd
2002 Marshall vs. Akron
Marshall Quarterback Byron Leftwich left the game in the first quarter to go to the hospital for X-Rays. X-Rays came back negative...for a one piece Tibia. Leftwich and his broken leg returned in the 3rd quarter with Marshall trailing 27-10 and the Herd offense was stagnant without him. Leftwich managed to throw for over 200 yards, but the Herd defense could not stop the Zips and the comeback fell short. The images of that game burned into our memories were late in the game with Leftwich being carried downfield by Sciullo and Paretta his linemen, doing what they are sworn to do.

8. Pete Sampras - Tennis
1996 U.S. Open
In the 90s Sampras was firmly entrenched atop the Tennis world as the Number 1 player in the world. At the 1996 Open he was in the middle of his record 286 weeks as number one and was the favorite to win his 4th U.S. Open Title. Sampras continued to build his legacy in a match against Alex Corretja. Sampras was suffering from terrible dehydration and even vomited on the court. Nonetheless the epic match went almost 4 and a half hours in the late fall heat and Sampras won. He went on to win his 4th Open title and cement his legacy as one of if not the best Tennis player of all time.

7. Donovan McNabb - Philadelphia Eagles
2002 Eagles vs. Cardinals
Not to be outdone by a college kid, McNabb wanted to make a name for himself two weeks later. Also in November of 2002 the Eagles were in a playoff push and were looking at the Division Championship. In what should have been an Easy W, the Green Birds faced off against (then) division foe Arizona. On the third play of the game McNabb was sacked by 2 Cardinal defenders and limped off of the field. After being examined by the coaching staff and medical examiners, and telling them he was fine, he played the rest of the game on a sprained ankle. He finished the game 20-of-25 for 255 yards and a career high 4 TDs. Only problem, that "ankle sprain" he alleged to the trainers was in all actuality a broken ankle. McNabb knew it was broken but wanted to play anyway.

6. Kirk Gibson - LA Dodgers
1988 World Series
Gibson had exactly one at-bat in the 1988 World Series for the Dodgers. Suffering from both a strained hamstring and a sprained knee ligament. Down one, Gibson limped to the plate to face, future Hall of Famer, and lights out closer Dennis Eckersley. Gibson worked the count full, and in retrospect A's Manager La Russa should have called for Eck to walk the man who couldn't run. Instead Eck threw one down the middle and Gibson took it back to the seats for the 2-run go ahead homer that set the tone for the series.

5. Wills Reed - New York Knicks
Game 7, 1970 NBA Finals
I'll stop before I get attacked, yes this is the most famous, hands down playing with pain moment. Pierce's moment was compared to Reed's by many. Here's my one problem with Reed's performance and why it isn't higher. Though painful there are more severe and debilitating injuries, plus his return had more of an emotional and inspiring meaning than anything else. Yes he helped to limit Chamberlain, but he only played 27 minutes and put up 4 points. With that said, and taking nothing away from it, it is still the 5th greatest moment of playing with pain.

4. Jack Youngblood - LA Rams
1979 Divisional Playoffs
In 1979 the Rams faced off against the Cowboys. Hall of Fame Linebacker Youngblood was the victim of a vicious chop-block at the hands of a pair of Dallas Linemen. The fear of every NFL defensive player, a cheap chop-block injury, was realized as his Fibula was snapped above the ankle. Youngblood had the trainers tape him up, threw a leg brace on, and led the Rams to an upset victory over the Cowboys, including a sack of fellow future Hall of Famer Roger Staubach. He continued to play through the Division Championship, but the Rams lost in the Super Bowl to the Steelers.

3. Michael Jordan - Chicago Bulls
Game 5, 1997 NBA Finals
With the series tied 2 - 2 the Bulls needed their team leader to step up huge in Utah to go back to Chicago with the series lead. Problem was Jordan awoke in the middle of the night before Game 5 shaking, sweating, and vomiting. He spent most of the next day hugging the Porcelain Prince. Jordan was struck down with the flu and spent all day weak, vomiting, and locked in a dark room. He continued to vomit throughout the game and had an IV at halftime. The enduring image of that series was Jordan hugging Pippen as he was carried to and from the bench through the game. Jordan couldn't even sit without slumping over and nearly falling off of the bench. Dehydrated, Nauseated, and weak Jordan was confident he would play, though the medical staff was confident of the opposite. Jordan played in 44 of 48 minutes and scored 38 points, 15 of which in the pivotal 4th quarter. The game turned out to be the difference as the emotional Jordan and the Bulls returned back to Chicago and won game 6 in front of the home fans.

2. Kerri Strug - Gymnast
1996 Olympics
The 1996 Summer Games started off with a bang, and not the good kind. The games were on the home turf for the US team in Atlanta but early on in the games a pipe bomb buried in Centennial Olympic Park exploded with two fatalities. The US basketball team dominated the world competition, Michael Johnson and his Gold Nikes tore up the track and the US won an outstanding 101 medals, 44 Gold. Even though all of those things remain firmly in the memory of sports fans, the image of Kerri Strug is one many think of when they think of those games. Strug, a member of the dominant American Women's Gymnastics team, vaulted her way into American lore. The US needed a good vault score to seal up the Gold and Strug, who had been overshadowed by teammates, had to be the one to do it. Strug fell on her first attempt and came up limping. She went back for attempt number 2 and managed a near perfect 9.7 while landing on one foot. Composed she made the turn, remained for a moment to seal the score, then collapsed with her broken ankle.
1. Steve Yzerman - Detroit Red Wings
2002 Stanley Cup Playoffs
Stevie Y managed to post 23 points over the 23 games of the playoffs. He led the Wings over Carolina in the Stanley Cup Finals. This was nothing new for Stevie Y, he was always one of the top skaters on the ice. But what was difference about this was the fact that he was playing on a bum knee throughout the latter half of the playoffs. Not just a sore knee, or a sprained knee. A completely shredded knee. Immediately following the Finals he underwent reconstructive surgery on the knee, and was shelved the entire off-season and the first 66 games, or 80%, of the following season rehabbing the knee after the knee realignment surgery.

Honorable Mentions:
Paul Pierce, 2008 NBA Finals
Larry Bird, 1991 Playoffs (nagging back injury)
Isiah Thomas, 1988 Finals (sprained ankle)
Bobbie Baun, 1964 Stanley Cup (leg)
Lance Armstrong, 1999 Tour de France (Cancer)
Alonzo Mourning, 2003 (Kidney)
Sean Elliot, 1999 (Kidney)
Ronnie Lott, 1985 (Finger)
On a side note, for Lott, Armstrong, Mourning, and Elliot, their injuries were in the offseason, but they were major comebacks. They were major but they did not have an effect on any individual performances. And I repeat, as I said earlier. They were ranked, by me, on 1st, when they occurred, and second on severity. Which is why Jordan's Flu ranks higher than McNabb's Ankle.

More after the jump...

Thursday, June 12, 2008

The Beauty of Technology

I know this is no shocker for many of you out there, but days like today make me realize how wonderful technology is in today's world. Specifically, the corporate world.

I am at work right now, and dont' get me wrong, I'm doing work, I'm making my sales calls, but also, in one ear I have The Jim Rome Show streaming into my right ear from the KLAC website in LA. After the show is over I'll head over to and listen to the On Demand webcast of the Dan Patrick show and finish my day listening to the local Tucson station, KCUB, to listen to Glenn Parker and In The House. All while I'm at work, without a radio to bother my fellow co-workers.

Beyond that I caught all of the March Madness games via the live feed complete with the "Boss Button" and the ability to pick and choose which games I wanted to watch. In April I watch the live feed of The Masters, complete with the ability to choose which golfers I wanted most to follow by the custom scoreboard on the side of the screen. Today I'm watching the US Open live feed on

I "watch" every Cubs day-game pitch by pitch on either the Cubs or ESPN website through their Gameday/Gamecast pitch by pitch breakdowns of each game.

4Real receives text messages during every Tribe or Browns game giving him the live updates, which is nice since there aren't a whole lot of Cleveland airtime in Tucson, AZ. Plus I have the RSS feeds for all sorts of sports and sites that I read so I'm fully aware whenever something interesting develops.

Live sports are all over the internet, and the ability to have them running in a shrunken screen or email updates while making sales calls makes my tiny cube feel like a mini sports bar, sans the glorious tap.

Basically I'm just basking in the glory of watching live golf and knowing Tiger and Hefty are both over par before the updates on the radio. And letting the many of you out there who were unaware of the live feeds, that you too can follow live sports from your own desk. It's a great day for sports fans.
More after the jump...

Monday, June 9, 2008

Benson Cut

The Chicago Bears have a storied tradition. For years they were the basis for great, Hall of Fame running backs.

Payton, Sayers, Grange.

Unfortunately, more recently the list reads...

Salaam, Enis, and now Benson.

The most recent to grace the Bear backfield, the oft injured and recent terror of Austin has officially been released from the Bears. As I mentioned earlier today:

"Also in Chicago professional sports related news, Cedric Benson is on a Big
Brown like pace. He finished the 2nd leg of the Triple Crown getting his 2nd DUI
in 5 weeks. The first coming on the water. Sources close to me tell me he is 2
weeks from getting his pilots license and will be gunning for the final, leg
Piloting Under the Influence, by the end of June. Way to go Ced."

The storybook carrer stats of the 2005 1st round pick (#4 overall) read as follows

420 carries
1593 yards
3.8 ypc
10 TD
4 Fumbles

Those would be good numbers for a #2 back over a 2 year span. Not the #1 back over a 3 year span. Good Riddance, those in Chicago were getting sick of his antics. He really was one of the most egotistical Bears in a very long time, and we should have seen this coming. For those of you who remember, I know 4Real does. Benson is on record of saying, during his last collegiate season that he would rather win the Heisman than beat (major rival) Oklahoma. An excerpt of that quote reads:
"If I could win the game entirely by myself – both offense and defense, punt
returns, kickoffs, kicking field goals, do everything – then I'd take the win
over OU," Benson said. "But for me personally, the hard work I've been through,
growing up as a kid and the dream I've had, I'd love nothing more than to win
the Heisman."

Not only would he rather win the Heisman than have his team beat their rival, he would rather beat the rival if he could do it all himself. It's no wonder the selfish Back decided to get in a car after a few drinks while already on thin ice both in Chicago and with the laws of Texas. He is still listed as "probable" on the ESPN website but I'm guessing he'll either be serving some time, or might be at the receiving end of a Goodell crackdown sometime soon.

So long Cedric, we hardley knew ye.

More after the jump...

A Few Thoughts

Yes I realize I have up set the masses, the tens of you who visit this site daily. For that I apologize. As a sidenote I do not have delusions of grandeur that people somehow get upset when I fail to post. But this is something that I do, something else that I do is have kids. That's right, for those of you loyal readers out there, brief mentions of my Pregnant girlfriend turned fiance turned wife have become those of the past. We had our daughter on the morning of May 28th, and that has turned into a full time job, on top of my other full time job, left little time for sports and more important posts. But I have been following and have some thoughts.

May 28th my daughter was born, the Cubs come back from a terrible late game defecit and continue to win, stretch the streak to 9 games, including a couple on the road to get to .500 on the road. I say she's a lucky charm, dad says she's the anti-Billy Goat. I guess her middle name should have been Namtrab (Bartman in reverse). He is so in love with this idea that he calls to make sure she is watching the games with me (rest assured she is, when she isn't sleeping with her Bears blanket and looking at her Cubs mobile). If anyone in the Cubs PR office is reading this, and you want a feel good story if/when the Cubs go to the World Series look me up. I mean if you can't find the obligatory Cubs fan in a wheelchair who is legally and almost fully blind who was "alive the last time the Cubs won the World Series". We'd be happy to sit at Wrigley in the post season.

Sticking with Chicago related news, Marcus Robinson is retiring as a Bear. Like Jim Rome I do not understand the whole "retiring as" thing. I mean if you go back for a full year and appear in a game or 16 then yes you retired with that team. Flying to Chicago to retire at Halas Hall means that the guy who played 6 (of 10 years) with the Bears retired in Chicago. The former Bear, Raven, Viking, and Lion is calling it quits. Yes he had a few really remarkable seasons with the Bears when they were less than formidable in the late 90s through 2002.

Also in Chicago professional sports related news, Cedric Benson is on a Big Brown like pace. He finished the 2nd leg of the Triple Crown getting his 2nd DUI in 5 weeks. The first coming on the water. Sources close to me tell me he is 2 weeks from getting his pilots license and will be gunning for the final, leg Piloting Under the Influence, by the end of June. Way to go Ced.

Michael Strahan retires and ends a very respectable, likely Hall of Fame career today. 15 successful years, capped off with the Super Bowl championship. The 2001 Sack leader and Defensive Player of the Year will most likely be showing off his Madonna sized gap in HD to all of our delights in a few short months. With Strahan and Farve retiring together, we can only assume the Farve will lay down shortly before Strahan approaches the podium at their enshrinement to get Strahan that one last sack.

I finally watched the Ron Santo documentary "This Old Cub" during the down-time last week. Done by Santo's son Jeff, and it was a really great documentary about Santo. For those of you who don't know about Santo, please look him up. He led a Hall of Fame career (inexplicably short of the Hall of Fame induction for some reason) at 3rd base for the Cubs in the 60's and 70's. He did it all while suffering from Diabetes. In the last few years he has had both legs amputated, and is still a champion. On a side note, while talking to Dad I found out he played cards with Jeff Santo a few times and told me that the first time Jeff played with his friends, Santo suffered a flood of money from his pockets the likes of Noah's Arc.

I also watched Juno. Overrated, I don't get the praise. I love indie flicks and weird humor, this however did not do it for me. The best thing I can say about it, I didn't feel like I completely wasted the 96 minutes, only slightly.

Floyd Mayweather continues to do his best Brett Farve impression, and retires again. We should see him in the ring shortly.

Remember when the NL Central was supposed to be the worst conference in baseball? Well there are 4 teams over .500 in the NL Central. The Nasti Natti is in last place at .469. The only conference with 4 teams over .500 is the AL East, which all 5 teams at .500 or better. The NL West, supposedly one of the best conferences in baseball has only one team (Arizona) over .500 the other 4 all fall under .476. The AL Central, also supposed to be one of the best conferences also only has one team over .500. The Sox at .581, the other 4 all falling below .492. So much for predictions. Speaking of which, please don't look back at the predictions that 4Real and I did prior to the season. In case you were wondering though, 4Real's predictions (LAA, CLE, BOS, DET) would be 2/4 today and my ALCS predictions would be 0/2. On the other hand my NL predictions are 3/4 and my NLCS predictions are still alive.

When does the hockey postseason start...wait...what? It did already? You're kidding me I guess they should publicize that a little bit better don't ya think?

Big Brown pulled up early, but was checked out and was not lame after the run at the Old Sandy on Saturday a.k.a the Belmont. With Big Brown being so damned dominant in Kentucky and Maryland, and a lack of top tier talent out there, coupled with the number one contender Casino Drive being a day of scratch, you gotta think we probably will never see another Triple Crown winner. These horses are just too frail, and it really makes Secretariat, Affirmed, and the 9 other Triple Crown winners look that much more amazing. Especially since 7 of the last 11 years we have had a Horse coming into Belmont with wins at Kentucky and the Preakness, and none have won. 3 of which (Silver Charm, Real Quiet, and Smarty Jones) finished in second and narrowly missed the bid. These horses are being bred to big and it's having a terrible effect on their lower extremities. We're going to see more things like Eight Belles beign euthanized on the track if something doesn't change. They are too big to run in events so closely spaced without coming up with, even the most minor, injuries. Steriods need to be banned in Horse Racing, enough said.

That's enough for now, I will try to get back into my old swing of things soon, but for now I hope this tides you over.
More after the jump...