Archive for the 'Sports' Category

Obama Fires Izzo

awards Michigan State 18 points.

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I Love Fast Women!!!

I think it’s great that there are fast women in the world. Fast on the 1/4 mile, fast on the Speedway, fast on the road course, and fast on the Salt Flats. If you thought I meant something else, you have a dirty mind.

Let me introduce Leslie Porterfield who holds 3 land-speed records, and is the fastest woman on a motorcycle in the US. 234.197 MPH

234.197 MPH !!!!

That would be really freakin’ fast in a car, and she did it on a naked bike. I first learned of her amazing feat while watching a Discovery Channel program, “Land Speed Records: Bonneville Salt Flats.” What is especially amazing to me is that Leslie returned to the Salt Flats to take the record after crashing at 175 MPH in 2007. She suffered several broken ribs, a punctured lung, and lots of bruises.

Next meet, Jessica Zalusky, who won #2 overall in the Central Roadracing Association Expert Championship.

Put Jessica in your prayers, as she suffered a stroke last year. Looks like she’s making a good recovery though.

I think both of these women (in fact all racers,) show tremendous courage when they sit behind the wheel or on top of a motorcycle. There’s always the chance that things will go wrong. And you have to be tough to recover from spills, accidents, or twists of fate.

So, why do I like seeing women in racing? It’s more then just wanting to see a pretty face in the pits and on the winners platform. My wife has done a little bracket racing, and one of the most inspiring things was seeing a little girl tug on her mom’s jeans saying, look, a girl is racing. I think it’s important to open up the possibilities for young women.

Racing isn’t just a mans game.

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China’s Olympic Designer to Boycott Olympics

Chinese architectural designer Ai Weiwei, who conceived the now famous “Bird’s Nest” Olympic stadium design for the Beijing games, will not attend the opening ceremonies in protest against Chinese dictatorship. He has some powerful words of explanation in the Guardian today:

We must bid farewell to autocracy. Whatever shape it takes, whatever justification it gives, authoritarian government always ends up trampling on equality, denying justice and stealing happiness and laughter from the people.

A bold and tremendously important gesture. Read the entire piece here.

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Potential interpretations…

This is the standard. (h/t Blackfive)

And considering the pins-and-needles environment that is the current political landscape, the comment has the potential of being interpreted as racially divisive.

What comment?

“Rest assured,” he told the crowd, “that men like Senator McCain will be the goal and the men that my two young boys will emulate and admire. You can have your Tiger Woods, we’ve got Senator McCain.”

The interpretation?

Sen. John McCain’s introductory speaker took a sharp and potentially sensitive swipe at Sen. Barack Obama,

Because it’s not possible that while talking about heroes that someone would contrast a war hero with a sports hero.

But considering the rate at which Tiger Woods is winning golf tournaments these days,

But Bellavia couldn’t have been talking about Tiger Woods because Woods is who he thinks of when he thinks of sports heroes. Oh, no. It’s CODE. Tiger Woods actually doesn’t mean Tiger Woods at all. Tiger Woods means OBAMA.

Thank you Huffington Post. Without your help I’d have never considered those “potential interpretations.”

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Mark Cuban Opens Locker Room to All Bloggers

So Dallas Mavericks owner close the locker room to bloggers earlier this month. He says it was because they didn’t have enough time for everyone though some think it was because he didn’t like what The Dallas Morning News’ Tim MacMahon wrote about coach Avery Johnson. This, however, is against NBA policy so they ordered him to open it back up to the newspaper bloggers.

Well, not to be outdone Cuban, who is a blogger himself, says he will open their locker room to all credentialed bloggers, regardless of affiliation, and issues this announcement,

Which means we will encourage all bloggers to apply, whether they be someone on blogspot who has been posting for a couple weeks, kids blogging for their middle school Web site or those that work for big companies … We won’t discriminate at all.

This is quite the 180 from their previous policy. While some see this as sour grapes, I think it could be a good opportunity to again show, there’s usually nothing special about being a newspaper journalist. I look forward to seeing some 7th grader’s reporting from the locker room.

More thoughts here. H/T Shaggy Bevo.

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Belichick = Cheater!!!

Sen. Arlen Specter says so. Though, why the US Senate is investigating the NFL about this is beyond me. I’m willing to forgo that discussion because the Patriots are evil. Evil cheaters! I’m just glad the country doesn’t have more pressing problems, so the Senator has the extra time on his schedule to investigate them.

Bill Belichick has been illegally taping opponents’ defensive signals since he became the New England Patriots’ coach in 2000, according to Sen. Arlen Specter, who said NFL commissioner Roger Goodell told him that during a meeting Wednesday.

And in case you were wondering the following pictures show what a 9mm Jacketed Hollowpoint does to the book “Patriot Reign: Bill Belichick, the Coaches, and the Players Who Built a Champion

Book Entrance Wound

Book Exit Wound

Why would I do that, because a fellow Colts fan asked me to do it…

And because shooting inanimate objects is fun (as long as it is also legal.)

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National Champs Again!

Debate? They have to be kidding.

Geaux Tigers

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What a contest!

You can pick which one thrills you the most, LSU’s thrilling last second win against Auburn or Bobby Jindal winning the Louisiana Governors race and avoiding a runoff.

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News Brief, The Great Salt Lake Edition

Non-bullet lists can be found over at The Conjecturer.

Defense & The War

  • Hahahaha, your contractors can be held legally accountable for their crimes it totes funny!
  • Is it 2009 yet?
  • Meanwhile, Singer laments the partisanship that’s infected the debate, and the, uhh, raging ignorance of the issue by the political leadership—especially Congress.
  • In case anyone was wondering, not a single local witness backs up Blackwater’s version of events.
  • I know the numbers aren’t comparable to Iraq, but did you know 155 Afghan civilians died in September (and NATO, pace Obama, killed nearly twice as many civilians in air strikes as the Taliban in suicide attacks)? Or that U.S. soldiers who are accused of firing indiscriminately into a crowd of civilians (even when they were, unlike those Blackwater guys on 9/16, actually attacked first), they are investigated by NCIS—a broken system considering how it handled the Pat Tillman case (among how many others I don’t know), but still a system of accountability that can be adjusted. Yet we can’t be bothered to investigate PMCs. Telling.
  • Maybe the Air Force acquisition team would stop going to jail and committing suicide if there was an ounce of integrity in how they conducted themselves.

Around the World

  • Michael Totten on the Kurds. I can’t say I’m on board making Kurdistan’s independence official—there are some angry neighbors to content with in the form of Turkey and Iran—but his portrait of an area free of extremism just miles away from where it is rampant is nevertheless worth reading. It always is.
  • Hugo and Fidel sittin’ in a tree. K-I-S-S-ewww!
  • Vladimir Putin, who is fronting like he’s defying death to travel to Iran and talk about monopolizing oil and gas, apparently has a thing for fluffy poodles.
  • A moving account of the assassination of a Washington Post stringer.
  • Huh. You’d almost think, with an uncontrollable border clearly run by drug lords and brigands in a region dominated by the restive Balochi minority, that sometimes finding weapons on the ground wouldn’t be too surprising. But saying so is “apologizing” for the regime, so let’s not jump the gun.

America Is a Silly Place

  • What Radiohead is teaching us about economics and commerce.
  • Also, why did NSA start the domestic spying program 7 months before 9/11? I won’t go bonkers and say it’s because they knew it was coming, but I will say the program has nothing to do with terrorism, and has a lot to do with breaking the law.
  • Heaven will punish me one day for posting this but I honestly couldn’t halp myself.
  • Drew Carey teams up with Reason and tackles traffic.
  • Ugh, I already have enough emotionless, robotic sex. Now they’re making robots to do that anyway? Talk about redundancy.
  • ZOMG Atreyu!
  • This makes me feel like I’ve been wasting my life by reading books instead of skimming rock faces at 100 miles per hour.
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WWE suspends TEN superstars

Shocked I tell you, I am absolutely shocked to learn that some professional wrestlers take steroids.

OK, I’m not shocked, and this is a good move by WWE. Now if we could only get “professional” baseball, and football to go along with this. Or stop the hypocrisy and start enhanced leagues, where anything goes. Steroids, bionics, anything goes.,,2003560001-2007400628,00.html

IN the most decisive move of its kind in the history of the wrestling business, the WWE have suspended many of their biggest name wrestlers for breaking drug rules.

The action came after the 10 men – allegedly including former world champions Edge and Randy Orton, ECW champ John Morrison, Brit William Regal and rising star Mr Kennedy – were identified as clients of Signature Pharmacy in Orlando.

That company was busted by cops in February for the distribution of steroids and other prescription drugs to clients who had not been examined by a doctor.

It has now been established that their ‘patient’ list included the 10 grapplers.

Former stars Chris Benoit, Brian ‘Crush’ Adams’ and Eddie Guerrero were also clients – all are now dead.

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Football mascots living the good life

My home is featured in a story in the Wall Street Journal this morning on the current trend in college athletics of building massive park like structures for animal mascots to live in. Southern Universities new home for their Jaguar Lacumba is the main story, but the truly palatial home for the LSU Tigers Mike gets ink as well.

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Thought MLB had it bad?

Apparently Democrat Congressman from California, Tom Lantos, has decided that Congress’ recent attacks on Major League Baseball and its various teams and athletes just weren’t enough. Now, it seems, the NFL is in for it. Citing the recent investigation into Atlanta Falcons’ Quarterback Michael Vick’s former home in Virginia, the distinguished gentleman from California took the opportunity to threate… um, I mean remind Commissioner Goodell that his Oversight and Government Reform Committee would be only too happen to visit the same woes on NFL teams and players as the MLB suffered. In fact, Lantos seems to infer that the NFL would wish for the type of treatment that baseball received by the time he and his Committee are done with it. Once again the feds are absolutely overstepping their bounds here and interfering in a private organization. The Commissioner has to walk a fine line between defending the NFL and its teams and players and graciously accepting the advice of Congressman Lantos (that is, not irritating him further). In this case of flagrant abuse of Congressional power, however, I’d say he should lean a bit more towards the former. Doesn’t Lantos have other things he could be focusing on (like immigration, homeland security, the global war on terror, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, earmark refrom, the Di-Fi scandal, Hillary’s choice of theme music for her campaign, etc.).

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Racist Referees?

I haven’t read the paper, just the article, the executive summary, the discussion on the radio, at Matthew Yglesias’ and at Marginal Revolution. So maybe these points have been covered in the full paper in a satisfactory manner.

I also do not mean to imply I doubt that there are disparities in how referees call games, and that it may reflect racism. I only ask these questions in the spirit of curiosity and general doubts about such research to prove what they claim as opposed to the truth of the claim.

1. Despite the explanation of controlling for these factors I am dubious:

The economists accounted for a wide range of factors: that centers, who tend to draw more fouls, were disproportionately white; that veteran players and All-Stars tended to draw foul calls at different rates than rookies and non-stars; whether the players were at home or on the road, as officials can be influenced by crowd noise; particular coaches on the sidelines; the players’ assertiveness on the court, as defined by their established rates of assists, steals, turnovers and other statistics; and more subtle factors like how some substitute players enter games specifically to commit fouls.

Many of these factors cannot be so easily reduced to statistical analysis. Most importantly, it seems that they have not allowed for a rather obvious objection. That even given all those factors, do black players deserve to have more fouls called upon them once those factors are accounted for? It is important to understand that a more aggressive posture (which they claim they control for, but it can only be, and given the way they seem to define assertiveness, indirectly accounted for) when it comes to play is not a criticism, it can have benefits as well as costs. Certainly black players are often considered more physical in their playing styles than white players, and that disparity is more often remarked upon at levels lower than the NBA (where one might see a narrowing of the difference if it in fact exists.) This common perception may be racist in and of itself (though it is often said as a pejorative against whites, and is made most prominently against white European players.) Given the cultural differences between the white and black populations in the NBA, especially with the influx of European players, would it be surprising to see such a difference?

2. If that is the case, in assessing the impact of the disparity (which is quite small as a practical matter) have they controlled for the benefits of playing that more physical style as well as the costs? One would guess no, since the possibility that black players do foul more is not the explanation.

3. It seems the disparity is driven not by a difference in the way white and black referees treat black players as opposed to a difference in the way they treat white players. There is a statistical difference between the way white and black referees treat white players. I am curious, how is it proven that the difference is driven by white racism versus black racism? Of course, if white players in fact commit just as many fouls as blacks contra potential objection #1, then obviously the issue is white referees favoring white players.

4. What if in fact both white and black referees discriminate against white players (not all that unlikely in my opinion) but black referees treat them even worse?

Once again, intuitively I find their results quite unexceptional and the conclusions reasonable, but are they proven? Thoughts encouraged, especially from those who have the time to read the paper.

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Want Progress, Race it, or Militarize it

An electric motorcycle is tearing up the track, and setting records. And improving at a very impressive rate. 6/10ths of a second gain in 3 months.

A123Systems today announced that The KillaCycle, the world’s quickest electric motorcycle and the official world record holder in the ¼ mile drag, broke the world record again using its lithium-ion batteries. The official record for any electric vehicle worldwide in the ¼ mile is set now at an elapsed time of 8.16 seconds. Further, The KillaCycle holds the top speed record for the ¼ mile, at a blistering 156mph.

electric drag bike

I firmly believe that you see the most dramatic progress in an areas of technology that either make man go faster, or kill faster.

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I Still Enjoy Shaq

Even though he kept my beloved Mavericks from taking home the hardware last year. I loved him at LSU (and imagine if Chris Jackson had stuck around and Stanley Roberts had decided to stay in school for Shaq’s sophomore year) and that trumps any Mavericks loyalty. In addition, from Eric Umansky we get this:


Shaquille O’Neal, on being an All-Star starter after playing just 10 games:

“I’m like President Bush. You may not like me, you may not respect me, but you voted me in.”

The man may be wearing a mumu in two years, but at least he can still throw down a line.

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Good News for Floyd Landis

(H/T- Tom Maguire)

I’ll admit, I always found Landis not passing the drug test after his remarkable stage 17 win inexplicable. It never made any sense, but that didn’t mean it wasn’t true. So we now see he may have reason for complaint:

Tour de France champion Floyd Landis claims
more mistakes were made in his doping case, this time involving
technicians who handled his two positive urine samples.

attorneys say the cyclist’s positive doping tests could be invalidated
because the same technicians were allowed to work on both samples. Lab
rules prohibit technicians from participating in both tests to prevent
them from validating their own findings.

I hope he isn’t guilty, because if he is he is one of the stupidest cheaters in living memory.

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Dennis Johnson RIP

I was a huge Celtics fan growing up, and really stayed one until I moved to Fort Worth where I became as addicted to the Mavericks as I once was to the Celtics. The great, and under appreciated, Dennis Johnson has now passed on. I still remember him from his first two years in the league, leading the Seattle Supersonics to the NBA title. A terror as a defensive player, a tremendous shot blocker as a 6′4″ guard with a vertical leap that was more astonishing than any player in that era except David Thompson. That however was only the start. Bill Simmons has a superb tribute that gets to the heart of what made him so great. Read the whole thing.

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It’s DAA Colts!

Although not a huge fan of either of the teams playing in this year’s Superbowl, I admit to being both impressed and happy that Indy won. The first quarter made me doubt Indy’s chances, but they struggled back to to take the lead heading into halftime. Peyton Manning can now put the ghost of Dan Marino to rest and Tony Dungy can join the record books as the third person to win a Superbowl as both player and coach. Well done, Colts. Enjoy the offseason; you’ve earned it!

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I Am The Predicter

While my political prognostications may not be up to snuff, I could not resist pointing out a prediction that I nailed:

It’s still early in the season, but I think a Chicago-Indy SB is the best bet, and my money is on Manning.

Accolades are welcome in the comment section.

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From the Department of “You have got to be kidding”

The Nation of Islam has a sports blog (Hat tip: Three Sources) and it is a riot. I thought the nonsense at the Stormfront (not linking, I tired of their schtick when I linked to them last time) site was offensive and ridiculous. Get a load of this (which at first I thought might be parody):

White devils on ice. Whirling dervishes on skates. White athletes propelled and assisted by physics to speeds they can not reach on land. The ice. The last refuge and hiding place of the white athlete.

Relegated to minority status in most team sports, the white athlete has retreated to frozen water as a means of preserving his one “major” remaining sports league. Knowing full well the Negro athlete has a traditional distaste for performing on or in water. After all, it was across a great body of water the Negro was shanghaied and stolen.

Hey, wasn’t Al Campanis fired for saying something about African Americans and water?

As Negroes, we turned our attention to NASCAR, hoping that Jay-Z or Carmello Anthony would invest in the future of Negro America by developing a racing team to return the world of autoracing to the original human. While our eyes were diverted, the white devil sprung into action.

Hockey players agreed to pay cuts. A new network was conjured to carry the “sport”. And, like the rebirthed spawns of satan, the return. Brawling, bearded and unevolved monoliths reappeared from the frozen northern wasteland.

For those not getting it, the original human is one of African ancestry and the unevolved are white people, though by the terms own reckoning aren’t we all of African ancestry? It seems the view is that whites and other races are being driven from sports because of their inherent inferiority.

Check out the first post from this pocket of racial hatred:

A resounding “good day” from the Nation of Islam, as we pursue or path of righteousness and brotherhood by venturing into the world of sports.Anticipate a view of the sports world through the eyes of the original members of the Tribe of Shabazz.

As the original humans, the view through our eyes is the only authentic view.

In the words of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad: “We don’t hate white folk. We just don’t like ‘em much.”

(emphasis mine.)

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