Saturday, December 13, 2008

FRIDAY NIGHT HOOPS

Q: If Delaware is the second smallest state, how small is Delaware State?

A: MARYLAND 86, Delaware State (Hornets, 3,374 students, Dover, DE) 58 – Landon Milbourne scored a career-high 23 points, and three other Maryland players reached double figures Friday night in a rout. The Terps (7-2) never trailed in their third straight victory.

MIAMI 76, Florida International (Golden [Fightin’] Panthers, 38,614 students, Miami, FL) 50 – In a rematch of the notorious football brawl game, the Canes’ James Dews had 15 points, Jack McClinton scored 12 and Miami routed crosstown foe FIU. Michael Dominguez had 15 points and six rebounds for the Golden Panthers

(AP Photo/Nick Wass. Maryland's Greivis Vasquez (21) loses the ball after being fouled by Delaware State's Arturo Dubois. At left is Delaware State's Frisco Sandidge.)

ALL ACC COLLEGE CUP FINAL

UNC 1, WAKE FOREST 0 – Senior forward Brian Shriver found the back of the net in the fourth minute and junior goalkeeper Brooks Haggerty followed with a career-best seven saves to lead No. 13 seed North Carolina past No. 1 seed Wake Forest. With the win, the Tar Heels (15-7-1) make up half of an all ACC final when they take on Maryland 1 p.m. Sunday on ESPN2.

While the Deacs seemed to have the ball in close proximity to the Heels goal for most of the second half, Haggerty and the Carolina back four fended off challenge after Wake challenge. The defending national champion Demon Deacons (21-2-1) were shut out for just the second time this season after scoring 12 goals over their last two postseason victories. With the seven saves, Haggerty posted his third shutout of the postseason.

MARYLAND 1, St. Johns 0 – Senior midfielder Graham Zusi scored the game-winner with six minutes remaining in the second overtime period to send the Maryland men's soccer team to the national championship game against the Tar Heels.

The Terps entered unfamiliar territory in the second overtime with St. John's being the first team to push the kids from College Park past the first extra stanza this season. Zusi penetrated the Red Storm backline and was fouled just outside the box in the game's 104th minute. Zusi, on his season-high ninth shot of the game, laced a shot past the Red Storm’s keeper into the upper right corner. Game over.

Maryland (22-3-0) is headed back to the finals for the fifth time in program history. The Terps last landed in the championship game in 2005 when they captured the title. Friday's win is the 15th-straight for Maryland and its school-record 14th shutout this season. St. John's ends its season at 19-3-3.

(North Carolina midfielder Billy Schuler (10) celebrates, Tar Heel goalie Brooks Haggerty, right, blocks a shot as Wake Forest forward Cody Arnoux looks to score, and Maryland forward Jason Herrick, left, gets a shove in the back from St. John's defender Joel Gustafsson while battling for a header during the first half. AP Photos/Matt Slocum)

TERPS SOCCER EXPERTISE COURTESY OF THE GREATEST SOCCER PROGRAM IN THE U.S.

The Terps coach is an interesting cat and a dynamite soccer coach.

Born in Yugoslavia, Sasho “Lefty DrisellovichCirovski shocked the folks at College Park when he stated (just like the OlLefthander) that his intentions were to "win the national championship."

Soon his teams began to turn out winning records, and in 2002, the Terps began a remarkable streak of four consecutive appearances in the NCAA College Cup, the final four of men's NCAA college soccer. In 2005, they captured the national title with a 1-0 win over top-ranked New Mexico.

Whether Drisellovich will admit it or not, he learned most of the important soccer stuff from his wife Shannon Higgins who played collegiate soccer at the most dominant school in the history of the sport – the University of North Carolina. By the way, she was good. Really good. Higgins was enshrined in the National Soccer Hall of Fame in the fall of 2002.

In this age of ubiquitous corporate naming rights deals for stadiums, Cirovski decided to join in on the act.

After last Saturday’s 1-0 win against Creighton, Cirovski said one of the team’s mottos this year was, “from the Home Depot [Center] to Pizza Hut Park.” The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., was the site of the Terps’ season-opening 2-1 overtime win against UCLA on Aug. 29. Pizza Hut Park is the home of this weekend’s College Cup in Frisco,Texas.

JMU LOSES SLOBBERKNOCKER

Damn it!

On a cold night in a game dominated by smashmouth rushing, hard hits and turnovers, the Montana Grizzlies avenged their loss in the 2005 championship game by knocking down and eventually out the JMU Dukes 35-27 in the semis of the FCS (D1AA) playoffs.

Richmond faces Northern Iowa this afternoon in the other semifinal game.

The fired-up Griz knocked JMU star playmaker and player of the year candidate QB Rodney Landers out of the game in the second quarter and never looked back. In a game that featured 496 yards of rushing, Montana’s QB Cole Bergquist’s three touchdown passes proved the difference.

While the No. 1 Dukes stay home, the Griz will be making their sixth championship appearance. Montana (14-1) won its 10th straight, forcing four turnovers and twice turning James Madison's fumbles on kickoffs into demoralizingly short, easy touchdown drives.
(AP Photos)

PSYCHO SANTA-T


Tyler Hansbrough may be the reigning Player of the Year, but he still has to go Christmas shopping.

Actually, the Tar Heel hoopsters made their annual holiday pilgrimage to Target on Tuesday afternoon, taking some of the funds raised from the sale of autographed basketballs and spending almost $3,000 for needy families in the Chapel Hill-Durham area. The process, which is used department-wide as part of the Carolina Share Your Christmas program, is fairly simple: each player received the names, ages, and Christmas wish list of a family in need and were then sent off shopping.

Looks like Hansbrough brought along some help.

Adam Lucas has the full scoop over at TarHeelBlue.com.

(Photos by Jeffery A. Camarati)

WHY THINGS ARE

Where TAH takes a moment to explain things that might otherwise be inexplicable…

For example, on local radio the other night, Steve Czaban asked Redskin head coach Jim Zorn why Antwann Randle El is locked in as punt returner when his production is rather low. Why not to try out Rock Cartwright on punt returns as many fans suggest?

"Yeah," Coach Him Zorn said, in a "yeah-as-in-no" sense. "That won't happen this year. It's still gonna be Antwaan."

Why not try Rock, he was asked?

"Because Antwaan's our punt returner," Zorn said.

Now we don’t know WHY he’s Jimmy Z’s punt returner, but we do know why he’s not VERY GOOD at it anymore.

The answer is really very simple: Bentley GT.

Randle El drives a Bentely GT. The MSRP is $175,000.

Nobody who drives a $175,000 car is worth a damn at returning punts.

Who doesn't know that?
IS ANYTHING IN THE CAPITAL OF THE FREE WORLD FUNCTIONING PROPERLY? The Wiz have started the season 4-16, while the defending champion Celtics are 21-2. Ouch.

Here, Rajon Rondo #9 of the Boston Celtics shoots against Antawn Jamison #4 and Juan DIxon #12 of the Washington Wizards at the Verizon Center on December 11, 2008 in Washington, DC. The Celtics won the game 122-88.

(Photo by Ned Dishman/NBAE via Getty Images)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 2

IS THE NEXT RYDER CUP IN MANHATTAN OR ON SANTA'S HOME COURSE? PGA golfer Corey Pavin poses with the Ryder Cup trophy and the Radio City Rockettes after he was selected as the captain of the United States Ryder Cup team in 2010 on December 11, 2008 at Tavern on the Green in New York City.

(Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 3

IT SEEMED LIKE A GOOD IDEA AT THE TIME. Seen on Rt. 29 North between Charlottesville, the home of the University of Virginia, and Warrenton, the home of TAH.

(Photo by TAH Worldwide Media – all rights reserved, and then some)

Friday, December 12, 2008

DID WE MENTION IT’S EXAM WEEK?

The ACC basketball schedule resumes this weekend and the bowl season gets underway next week. Due to exam week at various schools, hard news has been a little hard to come by. However…

Founding member of the TAH Society and junior at North Carolina M.C. Allen sent us this little clip that caused a college flash back of such immense proportions it brought tears to our eyes. If you went to college – no matter how long ago it was – this will remind you of some of the fun, crazy, spontaneous stuff that happens there and only there…



And, yes, one of those crowd surfers was in fact our very own TAH Society founding member, inside source at the Daily Tar Heel and knower of all things “from the Hill.”

We particularly liked the bemused security guard who just smiles and moseys on off…

Nice Rave, Heels, NICE!

THE RICH GET RICHER

As you know, we aren’t ones to micro manage such things as recruiting—especially when it’s about the 2009 incoming crop of hoopsters. However, some folks care a lot, and others still write very thorough explanations about what is going on such as ESPN’s Paul Biancardi. Biancardi’s piece gives you a complete school-by-school report.

TAH will just give you the highpoints such as early signers landed: Boston College (none), Clemson (three), Duke (two), Florida State (two), Georgia Tech (four), Maryland (two), Miami (four), North Carolina (five), N.C. State (three), Virginia (two) , Virginia Tech (five) and Wake Forest (two).

To no one’s surprise, UNC has what most folks are calling the best recruiting class in the country. It includes three kids that go 6-9 to 6-10 (depending on who’s measurements you believe) who can all shoot from medium to long-range, rebound, leap over tall buildings in a single bound, etc. (Note the color of the sky in the photo.)

Must be the rave.

ORANGE BOWL OFFICIALS PREDICT ECONOMIC DOWNTURN WITH HALFTIME ACT SELECTIONS

TAH wishes to apologize to the Orange Bowl after a commenter set us straight regarding both the length and production quality of the Orange Bowl half-time show. After we stated that the intermission was overly long and over-produced, one of our loyal readers said this:

The Orange Bowl has a massively over-produced half-time?!? You're living in the past. Last year's half-time consisted of some DJ trying to get the fans to yell at each other, and ZZ Top playing ONE song. Probably none of which was visible from anyone's couch.

Now you want living in the past? We give you LIVING IN THE PAST (Jethro Tull). The 2009 FedEx Orange Bowl halftime show will feature none other than…drum roll, please…THE DOOBIE BOTHERS.

We know what you’re thinking: Are they still alive?

Well…evidently, they are.

According to the production company responsible for the Seminole Hard Rock Orange Bowl Halftime Show, the Grammy Award-winning and multi-platinum selling Doobies have been bringing, “their uniquely dynamic rock style -part rock, part jazz and part folk - to the world since 1969. This style is the reason they have sold more than 22 million records across the globe” and are part of the integral (and evidently still popular) style that has generated hits like "Listen to the Music," "Black Water," "Jesus Is Just Alright," "Long Train Runnin'" and "China Grove."

We don’t want say they’re old, but when Black Water was a hit record (and we do mean "record") Richard Nixon was the prez…What they don’t say is that out of those 22 million only 17 of them have been sold since 1991.

It would seem there is a pattern here. A company called ACT took over the production of the halftime show a few pulp-less bowls back. Last year, they brought in that lil’ old band from Texas to headline the big show – yep, ZZ Top.

“All you have to say is ZZ Top and you know you’ll have a show that will be something truly spectacular,” said ACT President Bruce Orosz. “Add a pre-game show that will feature a well-known national artist and a first-class BCS football game and there won’t be a more exciting place to be in all South Florida.”

So, yes, TAH was living in the past as is the Seminole Hard Rock Orange Bowl Halftime Show.

Whoa-o-o-o, listen to music…!

NEVER MIND THE GAME, WHAT’S IN THE GIFT BAG?

You may have not thought of this, but one of the perks of any major event, be it a bowl game or the Oscars, is the much coveted “gift bag.”

So when the Hokies head down to sunny Miami for their Orange Bowl dinner dance with the Bearcats, what will be included in this all important pop culture party favor?

For starters $300 worth of Sony electronics. FedEx Orange Bowl officials have reserved a suite at each of the team hotels, the Westin Diplomat and Fontainebleau, for distribution and promotion of the giveaway items. On the night that each of the teams arrives, the players will be invited to the suite, handed a folio that not coincidentally features their school colors and is emblazoned with the bowl logo, and given what is basically a $300 credit line. Players can check off from a list in the folio the items that they want (up to $300 in total value), and the gifts will be delivered to the addresses of their choice.

Oh, and that’s not all. Get a complete look at what all the bowls are giving the players courtesy of Street & Smith.

(Reuters photo)

A SHOUT OUT TO HISTORY BUFFS

You fellas in Raleigh probably already know all of this, but for those of us ACC aficionados forced to live in the giant void outside of Tobacco Road, it's quality information.

THE DIXIE CLASSIC

…and not it’s not an unreleased Doobie Brothers song.

There was a time when most basketball, even college hoop, was local. Before ESPN and the 24-hour news cycle, one actually had to attend a game to know what happened. You might get a newspaper account at best if you had access to a larger "media market" (back then they called that "big city").

One of the things that started the change toward a national eye on college hoop was the the Dixie Classic. The Classic was the brainstorm of Raleigh News and Observer sportswriter Dick Herbert and NC State coach Everett Case.

The concept was simple. State and its local counterparts Duke, Wake Forest, and North Carolina comprised half the eight-team field. The other four teams were top teams from across the country.

The Dixie Classic was first held in 1949, made possible by the opening of Reynolds Coliseum on the Wolpacks’ campus. The rest is history…

TheACC.com has a great story about it on their website.

FLEAS NAVIDOG

Hey, it’s Christmas lets poke some fun at an old ACC favorite knucklehead Michael Vick. We haven't done that in a long while.

That is exactly what Norm Chad did recently in Vick Confessions: Prison Life is Filled With Annoyances.

Any piece that uses the words ‘sheesh’ and ‘cockfighting’ in the same paragraph is money with TAH.

(Photo: Leslie Nuccio, left, holds up Hector, a pit bull that was seized from Michael Vick's property, as he meets Johnny, another dog taken from Vick's property, held by Jennifer, right, during a good citizen-dog training class in Berkeley, CA. Photo from AP Photo by Eric Risberg)

(Editors Note: Kudos to Orange Rob for pointing this out, and in return for this kindness – and most of a bottle of Bushmills – we’ll refrain from burning a West Virginia lawn chair in his yard after the Heels whip up on his beloved WVU in Charlotte. That ought rile up the Mountaineer faithful.)

PICTURE OF THE DA(L)Y

AT LEAST ONE MORE DA(L)Y. Big John Daly lived to fight another day when the second round of the Australian Open at the Royal Sydney Golf was suspended due to inclement weather (a fancy term for a bunch of rain).

(Photo by Torsten Blackwood/AFP/Getty Images)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 2

WRONG BALL. Ok, everybody knows we love our Yahoo Sports and their image gallery. Were not for them, this blog would be full of nothing much more than our words. That would be grim.

Having said that, this is the caption as originally printed with this photo: “India's cricketer Harbhajan Singh rubs a ball on his trousseau before bowling during the second day of the first cricket test match between India and England in Chennai, India, Friday, Dec. 12, 2008.”

TAH contacted crotch grabbing expert Michael Jackson as well as several current and ex-MLB players and 100% of our respondents do not believe Mr. Sing was rubbing “a ball on his trousseau”. They seem to think there was, in fact, both rubbing and balls, but to a man(?) they prefer the caption “Inidia’s cricketer Harbhajan Singh adjusts his privates before bowling…”

(AP Photo/Bikas Das)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 3

THE SKYSCRAPERS ARE OUT OF BOUNDS. Germany's Anja Monke plays a shot on the 6th hole on the second day of the Dubai Ladies Masters golf tournament in the Gulf emirate on December 12, 2008.

(Photo by Karim Sahib/AFP/Getty Images)

Thursday, December 11, 2008

WEDNESDAY NIGHT HOOPS

BOSTON COLLEGE 80, Bryant (Bulldogs, 7,365 students, Smithfield, RI) 61 – Rakim Sanders hit five 3-pointers and finished with 19 points to lead Boston College to its fourth straight win. Corey Raji had 15 points and Joe Trapani 11 for BC (7-2). Tyrese Rice and Reggie Jackson had 10 apiece. That’s five guys in double figures and that usually adds up to a win this time of year.

The loss spoiled the return of Bryant coach Tim O'Shea who played for the Eagles from 1980-84 and worked under current coach Al Skinner for 13 seasons.

The Eagles took control with a 13-0 run midway into the opening half and led 36-20 at halftime. They turned it into a rout by scoring the first 17 points of the second half.

Cecil Gresham led the Bulldogs (1-7) with 19 points. In its first Divison I season, Bryant is playing a stretch of 12 road games. Their next three games for the Bulldogs are against Rutgers, Providence and Maryland, and they have already lost to UConn by 30 points.

(AP Photo/Elise Amendola)

LET’S GO BOWLING

ESPN’s Heather Dinich does an excellent job (as usual) of breaking down all the ACC bowl games in great detail. You know, the kind of detail that makes TAH’s head hurt and the same kind of detail that completely contradicts our “high standard of low excellence.”

Check it out, it’s good stuff and below it there are even more detailed game-by-game reports: http://myespn.go.com/blogs/acc/0-3-342/Ranking-the-ACC-s-bowls.html

THINGS THAT MAKE YOU GO...

Hmmm…

Japan competes in the group all-around qualification of the rhythmic gymnastics.

Evidently, this inspired the new Jennifer Anniston photo shoot in GQ.

(Photo by Frank Fife/AFP/Getty Images)

MAMA SAYS KNOCK AUBURN OUT

Oh my.

Mama says...

This week the AP reported that Tommy Tuberville’s mama took umbrage with Auburn’s assertion that her boy had indeed resigned and not been fired by the University.

Tim Keown over at ESPN’s Page 2 points out very astutely that such a thing could only happen in the South.

Is mama a Bama fan?
(AP Photo/Dave Martin)

RIDICULOUSLY NAMED INSANE SNACK FOOD OF THE WEEK

We don’t know how it measures up on the scoville scale, but these babies are pretty warm.
Not take-a-swig-straight-out-of-the-Dave’s-Insanity-Sauce-bottle hot, but pretty hot…

Nice, Blair's Death Rain, NICE!

DEAR MR. SNYDER

(One in a long series, feel free to read as much as you like…)

Dear Mr. Snyder:

What happened to US? We got off to a HORRIBLE start, rallied up to 6-2 and then as the weather turned grey and COLD like the shadow over ill-matched lover’s hearts, we slowly DRIFTED apart to 7-5.

Our playoff hopes are looking very much like the pre-season predictions which, in case you forgot, were something along the lines of zero, zilch, nada, ZIPPO.

Forget LOSING to the oh-so lowly-Rams (at home, yike!) and BARELY beating the Millen-less Lions, the real story EMERGED in the games v. the Giants, Steelers, Cowboys and Ravens. And, no, the problem isn’t the TWO JASONS, although we don’t UNDERSTAND why Jason Campbell constantly throws short passes at his receivers’ FEET. Not directly at their feet, but in front of or behind their feet. Recently, like CLOCKWORK

No, it’s not about the QB or the T.V. star. Remember your hero Joe Gibbs? Do you remember the primary TENET of the philosophy of SAINT JOE? It’s not about skill positions, it’s about line play. While you and Vinnie draft a PUNTER and continue to fall in love with skill players, the name of the game in the NFL is who wins the battles IN THE TRENCHES.

The Gibbs philosophy (well, at least when it worked back in the old days) was all about CONTROLLING the line of scrimmage – RUNNING the ball on offense and stopping the run and RUSHING the passer on defense. This year we have been good at the former until the O-Line turned into a M.A.S.H. unit, but we simply can’t muster ANY pass rush even with a world-class good-foot on board.

So how to FIX this situation for NEXT year? Easy.

Two things: 1) Keep DRAFTING big wide receivers like you did last year until you find some that will come to camp ON TIME, learn the offense, not get HURT and ultimately make a meaningful contribution. There are some future All-Pros out there the likes of T.O., Plaxico and Randy Moss who aren’t gunslinger-loudmouth-play-calling-wanna-be-offensive-coordinator-ego-maniacs.

And, 2) Go after some younger, healthier LINEMAN in the free agent market once you clear up some cap space. Not Jeff George young, or Deon Sanders young or (horrors of horrors) MARK BRUNELL young, but guys who are under thirty and still relatively healthy and MOBILE. Which, OF COURSE, in terms of cap room may be 2015. Signing Twinkle Toes Taylor was the right CONCEPT. It hasn’t worked as well as planned as he has been slowed by a NAGGING injury, and the simple fact that the Skins don’t have another LEGITIMATE pass rush threat to occupy opponents.

So let’s fix the trenches and move on. If you don’t believe TAH, just read Michael Wilbon’s EXCELLENT column in Washington Post about losing the inside battle called “Trench Rot.

In the meantime, we hope Jimmy Z can hold our bunch together with DUCT TAPE and piano wire, and PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE don’t lose to the Bengals. Not that we're begging. OK, maybe a LITTLE.

Oh, and that little DUST UP between J-Zorn, the Zen Master, and Clinton Portis? Not a problem. Clinton is just FRUSTRATED with losing and he claims he was just VENTING when he spouted off on Coach John Thompson’s radio show calling his boss a “genius.” OOPS.

(By the way, have you noticed that EVERYBODY on the Washington D.C. ESPN radio station from Colin CowTerd right down to local wags and the Skins themselves are BUSTIN’ on the Redskins all the while you OWN the damn station! Dude, that’s a PROBLEM.)

As you know Clinton is a STUD and he’s having a great year in spite of both he and his O-line being BEAT UP. Like we said, get some big BOULDERS in here for the U-man to run behind and watch him SHINE on like the CRAZY diamond that he is.

So in closing, please BELIEVE that we’re right here with you until the END or at least until 1) it’s too cold to go to the game or 2) it’s warm enough to do something less FRUSTRATING than watching the Skins score 10 points like playing BAD golf.

Your Loyal Fan,
TAH
(AP Photo/Rob Carr, Reuters, AP Photo by Kelsey McNeal and AP Photo/Nick Wass)

QB FAMILIES AND THREE PRO AGENTS SQUIRMING

The question on football lips is “whose NFL career will be ruined” by winning this season’s Heisman Trophy?

The year-end-award that has led to professional football swoons the likes of Pat Sullivan, Johnny Rodgers, John Capelletti, Mike Rozier, Andre Ware, Ty Detmer (had enough? NO!), Gino Toretta, Charlie Ward (who turned out to be a genius with a great career with the Knicks), Rashaan Salaam, (enough? NO, NO, NO!) Danny Wuerffel, Chris Winke and Jason White (to name just a few), announced it’s three finalists yesterday.

After another great season that has landed his Gators in the BCS Championship Game Florida quarterback Tim Tebow, who already has one career stopper on his mantle, seems in a world of trouble. Two Heismans? Unthinkable professional debacle.

Tebow, the rugged and multitalented junior, was the first sophomore to win the Heisman last year and is trying to become the second player to win it twice since Archie Griffin (Seven NFL seasons, 2808 rushing yards, 1,607 receiving yards and 13 touchdowns. Hey, that’s not bad, he played for the Bengals) hit the exacta as a junior and senior in 1974/1975.

Sam Bradford from Oklahoma and Colt McCoy from Texas joined Tebow as Heisman finalists announced Wednesday.

Bradford has directed the highest scoring team in major college football history, leading the nation in passer rating (186.3) and TD passes (48) while throwing for 4,464 yards. The Sooners have scored 702 points and became the first college team in 89 years to reach 60 points in five consecutive games when they won the Big 12 title game 62-21 over Missouri last Saturday.

McCoy, who is following in the footsteps of another college whiz turned pro clunker (Vince Young), is, like Tebow, a threat to both run and pass. McCoy set a major college record with his 77.6 completion percentage, breaking the mark set by Daunte Culpepper (the poor man is playing for the Lions!), and is the Longhorns’ leading rusher with 576 yards and 10 touchdowns.

Yet again, Texas Tech is left standing at the altar unattended. Their QB Graham Harrell put up big stats and got Heisman buzz all year, but when your defense gives up more than sixty to the Sooners, you’re suddenly outside the Sports Museum of America in downtown New York looking in. All Harrell did this year was pass for 4,747 yards.

Surely, that’s worth a trip to the Big Apple?

Evidently not, but it damn sure bodes well for Harrell’s future pro prospects.

Somewhere, Cullen Harper is giggling.

(AP Photo/Erich Schlegel, File, Getty Images and TAH Worldwide Media)

PICTURES OF THE DA(L)Y

Evidently, the love and adoration shown Big John Daly by TAH and the golf fans Down Under is starting to take its toll.

Yesterday, Mr. Tan, Rested and Evidently-Not-So-Ready smashed a spectators camera into a tree in route to posting a 6-over 78 in the opening round of the Australian Open. The pukefest makes it likely that our run of great Da(l)y photos might come to and end as the Arkansas Bomber may well miss the cut for the third consecutive week in this particular hemisphere.

According to the blokes at AP, after pushing his tee shot wide on the ninth hole—his last—Daly walked into a clump of trees, where spectator Brad Clegg took take several pictures (according to Daly) at close range. Daly then snatched the camera and smashed it against the nearest tree, telling the man, “You want it back, I’ll buy you a new one.”

He later released a statement via tournament organizers saying Clegg got too close.

“I was looking to take a drop and a camera was 6 inches away from my face. If I was 10 under, I would have felt the same,” Daly said in the brief statement. “My eyes are still burning from the flash of the camera. (Dude, your eyes may be burning, but we wager it’s got little to do with camera flashes…)

“I feel it was very rude to put a camera that close to somebody’s face in any situation. The guy that had the camera had already taken a dozen shots at close range.” (OK, we’ll give you that, enough is enough.)

Without saying another word, Daly took his penalty drop, finished the hole with a bogey and stormed off the course.

Asked if he would seek compensation, Clegg told the Australian Associated Press: “I don’t think I’ll be chasing him for the money. He’s a big bloke!”

As of publication, TAH could find no information regarding whether or not Daly spent the night asleep at a Cooters (the Australian version of Hooters) after his disastrous round.

The entire ugly episode may explain exactly why Tiger isn't playing in camera-happy Australia.

(AFP/Torsten Blackwood and Mark Nolan/Getty Images)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 2

RING, NO RING. Troy Aikman, left, formerly of UCLA and the Dallas Cowboys, and Thurman Thomas, who played at Oklahoma State and the Buffalo Bills, pose for a photo after the news conference for the National Football Foundation Hall of Fame inductees, in New York Tuesday Dec. 9, 2008.

The pair are members of the 2008 Hall of Fame class to be inducted at the group's dinner later Tuesday. Remarkably, Hall officials have located Thomas’ helmet. (Sorry, Dawg and Gigs, couldn’t resist piling on.)

All kidding aside, both are worthy recipients.

(AP Photo/Richard Drew)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 3

BACK TO SCHOOL NIGHT? Is LeBron headed back to college to play for the USC Trojans, or is the uni color just a cruel trick?

Looks like the latter. Here, James Cleveland Cavaliers slaps hands with head coach Mike Brown during the game against the Philadelphia 76ers at the Wachovia Center December 10, 2008 in Philadelphia.

(Photo by Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images)

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

WE’VE LOOKED AT LOVE FROM BOTH SIDES NOW

Those Heels fans are still riled up about our “underachiever” comment…

Anonymous said: You guys are hilarious. You correctly mentioned that losing a starting QB and the biggest playmaker in the ACC hurt this team, yet they won 8.

Then you do a 180 and say they underachieved by losing at Maryland and getting blown out at home vs State. Which is it guys? You go from 8 losses to 8 wins, overcome injuries to the two most key guys on offense....and they underachieve?

This team is still a year or two away with all the young guys they're playing - you've noticed that right?

Oh, and by the way they finished 1-2, not 1-3.

We said: Thank you. Hilarious? Yes, we are. Accurate? Not so much, and never claimed to be. Thanks for the 1-2 correction. Duly noted and repaired.

Actually, the point is that it is "both." Even without their two key guys, the Heels won and won games against ACC Championship-caliber teams. But when they could have won out and done big things, they lost to Maryland and Virginia in two very ugly games. UG-LEE.

We won’t even factor in the State loss since the Wolfpacks' form reversal was nothing short of freakish. So the Heels overachieved mid-season and underachieved late.

Yes, they are young, and yes they are gonna be good next year.

Don’t worry, we still love our Heels.

Mommy’s not mad.

(Editor’s Note: And a big shout out to Judy Collins and Karen Flikeid -- two women whose names have never been used in the same sentence that didn't include the words "turn that sappy crap off.")

HOKIES LOSE ANOTHER SQUEAKER

Georgia (Bulldogs, 25,335 students, Athens, GA) 67, VIRGINIA TECH 66 – The Hokies found themselves on the short end of another close game last night is a season where the outcome of each game has been decided by an average of 4.7 points per game.

The Dawg’s Albert Jackson scored the game-winning basket with 28.3 seconds remaining and grabbed a critical rebound with 0.5 left after the Hokies’ Cheick Diakite missed the potential game winner.

After Jackson’s basket regained the lead for Georgia (6-3), who kept Tech in the game by missing 11 of 21 from the charity stripe, the Hokies had one final possession. Hank Thorn’s penetration dribble and shot failed to draw any iron, but Diakite was there for the rebound.

Unfortunately, his shot, from point-blank range, also drew nothing but air to the frustration of Tech coach Seth Greenberg. Diakite’ had made two free throws with just 57.1 seconds remaining to give the Hokies the lead.

A.D. Vassallo scored 23 points to lead Virginia Tech (5-4), which has dropped two of three and four of six.

Corey Butler and Chris Barnes each scored 11 points for the Bulldogs, who made just 10 of 21 free throws.

(AP Photo/John Curry)

DEACON’S CURRY WINS BUTKUS AWARD

Wake Forest senior Aaron Curry has won the Butkus Award honoring the nation's top college linebacker.

Curry received 63 points in voting, finishing seven ahead of USC's Rey Maualuga. James Laurinaitis from Ohio State, USC's Brian Cushing and Boston College's Mark Herzlich rounded out the top five.

Curry finished the regular season with 101 tackles, three fumble recoveries and an interception to help the Demon Deacons reach their third straight bowl game.

The award is named after Hall of Famer Dick Butkus, who made a surprise visit to the school Tuesday to present the award to Curry.

(Photo courtesy of Wake Forest)

YOU CAN STAY, BUT YOUR KID’S GOTTA G(R)O(H)

According to ESPN, Al Groh will be back for a ninth season as the football coach at Virginia, but his son Mike, the offensive coordinator the past three seasons, will not. (Mama Groh’s not gonna be happy about this…)

Mike Groh was among three assistant coaches who resigned in a shakeup brought on by his father's annual review, Al Groh said in a statement Monday. He said assistant head coach and defensive backs coach Steve Bernstein would retire and defensive line coach Levern Belin intended to pursue other opportunities.

A former quarterback for the Cavaliers, the younger Groh started as the wide receivers coach at Virginia before switching to quarterbacks in 2003. He drew praise for his role in the development of Matt Schaub and Marques Hagans, the two best quarterbacks at Virginia in the Groh era, but found it harder to come by after he was elevated to coordinator in 2005 when Ron Prince left to coach Kansas State.

The Cavaliers finally settled on freshman Jameel Sewell as their quarterback two seasons ago, and thosee two seasons leading up to this year were focused largely on Sewell's development. That plan backfired when Sewell was academically ineligible this season, and his backup, Peter Lalich, was eventually dismissed from the team.

Marc Verica eventually took over the position after three games and showed flashes of potential, but he also wound up leading the Atlantic Coast Conference with 16 interceptions. (All of which were, no doubt, Mike Groh’s fault.)

WHAT HE SAID: "There are no scapegoats here," Al Groh said in the statement after commending the coaches for their commitment to the university. "The head coach is responsible for the team."

WHAT HE MEANT: “I’ll help you get a new job, but somebody’s gotta take the fall. By the way, would you mind breaking the news to your mother?”

(Photo courtesy of Mrs. Groh)

PICTURE(S) OF THE DA(L)Y

TAN, RESTED AND READY. John Daly of the USA tees off on the tenth hole during the pro am ahead of the 2008 Australian Open at The Royal Sydney Golf Club on December 10, 2008 in Sydney, Australia.



(Photo by Mark Nolan/Getty Images)

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