Friday, April 17, 2009

WITH APOLOGIES TO JACK SPARROW

Man, those whack job pirates from Somalia are really messing with the ever popular pirate franchise. Do we go all politically correct and remove the Skull & Crossbones from the flagstaff at T.A.H. World Headquarters?

Like they used to say in that old Bud Light commercial…We don’t think so!

However, some folks are having a bit of fun with this and leave it to the boys over at Deadspin to wrap it up in a nice little bow.

Take a moment from your busy day and read this short item and BE ABSOLUTELY SURE to scroll down and read the comments.

If you don’t laugh OUT LOUD you are, either 1) having the worst day in the history of the world or 2) already dead (probably killed by a pirate).

And when you're done, check out this item about a Michael Vick reality show.

A LITTLE BIT PREGNANT?

Unknown to us until today was the simple fact that you can only test the NBA waters once. Yes, you can declare eligibility for the draft, go to NBA tryouts and camps and then undeclare and come back to school.

But, a “student athlete” can only do that once.

So Ty Lawson (pictured left regaling in the amazing invention that we like to call scissors and looking damned stoned while doing so) and Wayne Ellington will have to make a final decision on their status by April 26 since there is no wiggle room for these two who tested the NBA waters last year only to return to pick up some nets in Detroit.

As the Clash so eloquently once said, “Should I stay or should I go?"

Remarkably, Ol’ Roy had a comment and somehow he thankfully refrained from referring to himself in the third person.

“I think they are relying on the information, not necessarily my advice, because they’re going to do what they want to do, and that’s what I want them to do, but I want it to be an informed decision,’’ Williams said Thursday, after the team’s awards ceremony.

“And I’m extremely happy regardless of what they do. … If they decide to come back, of course I’ll coach them. If they don’t, I’ll go back and say it again: I’m extremely thankful for what they’ve already done and that I was able to coach them for three years.”

BY 20 POINTS...REALLY?

We don’t usually get bogged down in questions that have no answers unless it involves children, politics, sports or astral physics, but this item caught our eyes while following up on a Kentucky Derby thread.

According to someone at the Las Vegas Review Journal – an newspaper we know well and like a bunch – the 2009 North Carolina Tar Heels’ National Championship basketball team would lose by twenty points to the 1990 UNLV Rebles…Really? OK, upon further review, they merely repeated what some dude at CBSSports.com said…

According to LVRJ/CBS:

A strong case can be made for Larry Johnson as the best college basketball player of the past 20 years. The UNLV teams he starred on in 1989-90 and 1990-91 defined dominance, and Johnson was the Rebels' unquestioned leader.

North Carolina's impressive run to the NCAA title has inspired debates about ranking great teams.

"What is the best championship team ever?" asked columnist Mike Freeman of CBSSports.com. "It happens every year, and this year the answer is the same as it was last season and the season before that and the season before that. There's only one answer, and it's not even close. It's the 1990 UNLV team.

"The Rebels went to a level of dominance we hadn't seen since John Wooden's UCLA teams, and strictly in terms of one team -- just one, not a dynasty -- they were the best. They would've beaten these Tar Heels by 20 points."

Former Arkansas coach Nolan Richardson added that UNLV during Johnson's two seasons was "the best team I've ever seen. I'm not sure anyone else is even close."

The 1989-90 Rebels -- also featuring Stacey Augmon, Greg Anthony and Anderson Hunt -- went 35-5, with three of their NCAA Tournament victories coming by 30-point margins: 102-72 over Arkansas-Little Rock, 131-101 over Loyola Marymount and 103-73 over Duke in the title game.

UNLV went 34-1 the next year, losing 79-77 to Duke in the 1991 NCAA semifinals. "That was a better team than the team that won it, there's no question," former Rebels coach Jerry Tarkanian said.

"It's hard to say who's the best. Obviously, I wouldn't trade our guys for anybody. I thought we had the best defensive
team I've seen in college basketball, and I've had a lot of people tell me the same thing."

Interesting, but probably meaningless, is the simple fact that both coaches who were quoted in the story have been guilty of NCAA rules infractions which landed their team on probation and eventually got them sacked.

Not that there is anything wrong with that…

GREG PAULUS AND THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA IS KILLING AMERICA

Some would have you believe that bloggers and the Internet are killing American newspapers and generally buggering up the mainstream media. Evidently, the intense competition from one another, and now from zillions of geniuses (thank you) in the blogshpere, is causing more stories to be reported faster and with less homework due to the “gotta-have-it-now” nature of the beast.

But we point right back at the mainstream media for not doing their homework and making a bad situation worse. (Don’t even get us started on the media’s role in the “recession.”)

Let’s take the Greg “The King of Somewhere Flop” Paulus story. ESPN, Fox, Yahoo and every major newspaper/radio/TV/Internet sports outlet jumped on the story about his tryout with the Packers and alleged offer of a football scholarship from Michigan.

With almost three hours of ESPN radio under my belt and who-the-hell-knows how much time on the Internet plus the ALL IMPORTANT tread mill half-hour with PTI, nobody, save the Raleigh News & Observer, bothered to mention one critical fact about this story until some 48 to 72 hours later.

And that would be? Well Paulus can’t transfer to another D1 school without “permission” from the NCAA. Most news outlets would have you believing most of Tuesday and Wednesday that every NCAA student athlete had 10 semesters of eligibility to do as he/she pleases. Now if you were thinking, “Hey, that’s way too simple.” Hey, you would be right.

T.A.H. Pop Culture Editor Young A.T. was on this from the get go. Kudos to her. Her source? Yep, the N&O.

Of course, the NCAA isn’t going to let anybody move about the country that freely. Paulus can transfer to a D2 or lower school and play anything but basketball for two semesters. But if he wants to go D1 he needs permission from the suits in Kansas.

This is horse crap for a variety of reasons, and Caulton Tudor of the N&O has an nice short, eloquent column taking the NCAA to task.

In fact, we will give you a little teaser:

Fact is, there would be a lot of viewer audience interest in Paulus playing football. And while the NCAA doesn't always lend an open ear to basic logic, it can hear a cash register drawer open from a mile away.

Quality journalism – it’s hard to come by.

PICTURE AND VIDEO OF THE DAY

IT MAKES YOU WONDER. Why isn’t rugby more popular here in the U.S?

Really, why?

This happened somewhere around St. Patrick Day when everybody knows the Irish jack up the alcohol in their adult malt beverages so after consuming a few (hundred) of them you are compelled to strip naked and run across a large open space in front of a big crowd in a stadium, hundreds of thousands at home watching on TV and millions more via the internet.

Hmmm…don’t think that happened at Molly’s or did we miss something?

Thursday, April 16, 2009

TODAY WE ARE VIRGINIA TECH


Click on the photo for a better view...

DON'T FORGET LARRY DOBY...

Yesterday marked the 62nd anniversary of the integration of major league baseball by Jackie Robinson. Robinson, playing for the Brooklyn Dodgers, was the first African-American to play in the bigs.

But, who was the second black guy to break into the lily-white world of major league baseball?

Yesterday, to honor Robinson, the Mets unveiled their new ball park Citi Field which features a regal new rotunda. Robinson's widow Rachel handled the honors while his daughter Sharon tossed out the first pitch. The rotunda includes majestic, black and white photos adorning the brick and tile walls of Robinson with his Brooklyn Dodgers teammates, and pioneering general manager Branch Rickey.

High above the ballpark entrance, an inscription of his famous quote: “A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives.” At the other end of the room, an 8-foot, blue sculpture of his No. 42. Grainy highlights of Robinson’s life and career ran continuously on two large video screens. One of the engravings on the terrazzo floor: Jack Roosevelt Robinson. 1919-1972. Trailblazer. Humanitarian. American.

All around the majors yesterday, all players, managers, coaches and umpires wore No. 42, retired for every big league team in a 1997 ceremony at the New York Mets’ old ballpark, Shea Stadium. Only the Yanks Mariano Rivera was grandfathered in and wears no. 42 on a regular basis.

Lost in the celebrations was a fellow named Larry Doby. A native of Camden, South Carolina, Doby was the second black player to play in the modern major leagues and the first to do so in the American League. A center fielder, Doby appeared in seven All-Star games and finished second in the 1954 American League MVP voting.

Appointed manager of the Chicago White Sox in 1978, Doby was the second African-American to lead a Major League club. He was selected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1998 by the Hall's Veterans Committee.

Taking nothing away from Robinson and trail he blazed, no doubt, Doby encountered the same difficulties in American League cities that Robinson faced on the National League circuit and his difficult journey is also worth remembering…

(Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)

PICTURE(S) OF THE DAY














































Wednesday, April 15, 2009

EVIDENTLY DUKE NEEDS A POINT GUARD AT QUARTERBACK LIKE A FISH NEEDS A BICYCLE

…and what is he going to do about the whole flopping thing? Is he really trying to follow in his little brother's footsteeps who plays QB for the Tar Heels?

According to ESPN:

Since Greg Paulus appears serious about making the transition to college football this fall, Duke coach David Cutcliffe is willing to have the former Blue Devils point guard in for a tryout.
Just not at the quarterback position.

Cutcliffe said Wednesday he's told the 6-foot-1, 180-pound Paulus, a standout quarterback in high school who just finished his fourth year of basketball at Duke, that he could try out for a spot at inside receiver in Duke's last six spring practices.

Cutcliffe said he and Paulus "talked extensively" about the possibility of Paulus joining the football team, but the bottom line was there was "no way" he could come out and try to play quarterback for the Blue Devils after such a long hiatus from the position.

"He's a quarterback at heart, but there was no way he was going to be able to compete and play quarterback for us," Cutcliffe said.

According to NCAA eligibility guidelines, student-athletes generally must sit out a year if they transfer from one four-year school to another. Because student-athletes are allowed to redshirt for medical or other reasons, they are granted 10 semesters of eligibility.

In the case of Paulus, because he was never a basketball redshirt at Duke, as an undergraduate transfer he would be eligible to play football at another school, assuming there are no extenuating circumstances concerning his eligibility.

In advance of the NFL draft next weekend, Paulus worked out in front of representatives for the Green Bay Packers last week in Durham, N.C., Duke spokesman Art Chase said.

Chase also said that the Blue Devils point guard visited Michigan on Tuesday to explore the possibility of transferring there to play football.

Michigan spokesman David Abluaf declined comment and coach Rich Rodriguez has repeatedly said he only talks about players on his roster.

Sources told ESPN.com's Christopher Lawlor that Paulus was there to speak to Rodriguez about the possibility of playing this season for the Wolverines. Paulus watched Michigan practice.

Cutcliffe said perhaps Paulus would have a better shot at trying to play quarterback in a spread system like that of Michigan's.

PICTURE OF THE DAY

HONORING JACKIE. Players for the Kansas City Royals stand during the National Anthem wearing jersey #42 during the Jackie Robinson Day game against the Cleveland Indians on April 15, 2009 at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri.

All of major league baseball honored Robinson today with every player wearing Robinson's #42.



(Photo by G. Newman Lowrance/Getty Images)

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

VIRGINIA'S QUALITY ROAD AMONG FIRST RACEHORSES TO TWITTER AND FACEBOOK

No we aren’t kidding. T.A.H. is helping to coordinate the public relations campaign for Virginia-bred three-year-old Florida Derby winner Quality Road. He was born just down the road from T.A.H. World Headquarters in Casanova, VA, and he’s looking to become the first horse born in Virginia to win the Kentucky Derby since Paul Mellon's Sea Hero did it back in 1993.

Quality Road is by Elusive Quality (who sired recent KY Derby winner Smarty Jones), and he is out of the Strawberry Road (AUS) mare Kobla. He hasn’t done much wrong in his short four start career, winning three times including the $250,000 Fountain of Youth Stakes Gr.2 and the $750,000 Florida Derby Gr. 1. He has career earnings so far of $632,830 which is nothing at which to sneeze.

Two of the past three Derby winners – Big Brown and Barbaro – won the “most exciting two minutes in sports” after winning the Florida Derby. So, he's got that goin' for him...(which is nice.)

Quality Road is owned by Edward P. Evans who has a B.A. from Yale and an MBA in business from Harvard. In addition to personal business investments, Evans has served as Chairman and CEO of MacMillian, Inc., the publishing company. Evans’ father Thomas M. Evans (Crane & Co. for you plumbing fixture aficionados) owned, bred and raced 1981 Kentucky Derby winner Pleasant Colony who was also born about seven miles from T.A.H. World Headquarters in the little village of New Baltimore, VA.

To become a fan of Quality Road go to his Facebook page by clicking here. And to follow his Tweats just click here.

Finally, HorseHats.com has produced a Quality Road ball cap. You can purchase one by clicking here.

DAVIS AND AMINU TO STAY AT UNC AND WAKE FOREST

As expected, UNC forward Ed Davis will return for this sophomore season.

The school released a statement Sunday, saying the sixth man wanted to end all of the speculation about his future.

“I love being a student at Carolina and playing with my teammates for Coach (Roy) Williams,'' Davis said in a prepared statement. "I’d like to play in the NBA someday, but my family and I don’t think I’m ready to take that step. I’m glad this decision is behind me so I can focus on the rest of the school year and get ready to be a better player next season.”

Davis averaged 6.7 points and 6.6 rebounds for the Tar Heels.

Freshman forward Al-Farouq Aminu, widely expected to enter the NBA Draft in June, will return for his sophomore season at Wake Forest, the school's sports information office has announced.

"My family and I feel like now is not the right time," Aminu said in a statement released by Wake.

The 6-foot-9 forward from Norcross, Ga., who is listed among the top 15 picks in numerous mock drafts, averaged 12.9 points and 8.2 rebounds his freshman season.

WEEKEND LACROSSE UPDATE

DUKE 15, VIRGINIA 10
UNC 9,
Ohio State 4
Johns Hopkins 10, MARYLAND 9

PAIRINGS SET FOR LAX CHAMPIONSHIP: STRIPPERS OPTIONAL

Pairings for the 2009 Atlantic Coast Conference Men's Lacrosse Championship have been determined, as announced by the league office on April 11.

Maryland locked in the number one seed in the upcoming ACC two-day tournament, which will take place on the campus of the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, after the 8th-ranked Blue Devils defeated top-ranked Virginia Saturday afternoon.

Maryland, Duke and Virginia concluded the conference season in a three-way tie for first place. Due to the league's tiebreaker procedures, the seeding came down to goals allowed in ACC games between the tied teams, which were all 1-1 against one another. Maryland allowed only 18 goals against the Blue Devils and the Cavaliers, while Duke and Virginia allowed 21 and 24, respectively.

Maryland, which owns a 6-4 overall record and a 2-1 league mark, will take on fourth-seed and host North Carolina on Friday, April 24 at 5 p.m. ET in semifinal action. the other opening game will be No. 2 seed Duke vs. No. 3 seed Virginia at 7:30 p.m. ET at Kenan Stadium.

For more information on the upcoming ACC Men's Lacrosse Tournament, please visit http://www.theacc.com/championships/09-mens-lacrosse-championship.html

ONLY 137 CRIME FILLED DAYS UNTIL FOOTBALL

That’s a lot of time for crime!

For all you football fans jonesing from some pigskin, get all you need to know about spring games, recruiting etc. from ESPN’s Heather Dinich…

http://myespn.go.com/blogs/acc

Evidently Wake Forest just signed a kid from Woodberry Forest here in Virginia named Duke Mosby. How did he not end up at The University with a name like that?

First games are August 28th – Jacksonville State at Georgia Tech, Charleston Southern at Miami, NC State at South Carolina and Wake Forest at Baylor.

ACC EXPECTED TO SHINE IN UPCOMING NFL DRAFT

Football mediocrity not withstanding, the ACC is predicted by someone called the National Football Post (via Yahoo! Sports) to go early in the first round.

With the NFL draft now just 2½ weeks away, it’s time to take a broader look while breaking down the nation’s top 100 prospects. This is the second-to-last top 100 we’ll post before the draft, so there won’t be any significant changes in the coming weeks.

1. OT Eugene Monroe (pictured), VirginiaAn athletically gifted tackle with the length and feet to become one of the league’s best.

2. OLB Aaron Curry, Wake ForestDisplays rare athletic ability for a player his size and looks like a real difference-maker in the NFL.

3. DT B.J. Raji, Boston CollegeThe draft’s top defensive tackle, but he has some question marks as far as character is concerned.

“Question marks as far as character is concerned…,” T.A.H. can smell some potential crime…

THERE IS NO TIEING/TYING IN BASEBALL!!

Oops…Evidently, there is.

ACC rules don’t allow for an inning to start within a certain time of a team’s flight departure time. So, In kiss-your-sister mode, Virginia and Georgia Tech completed the final game of the three-game set with a 4-4 tie at Russ Chandler Stadium after playing nine full innings.

Per ACC curfew rules, which were based on the departure time of a commercial flight back to Charlottesville, the teams were unable to start an inning after 4:15 p.m.

With the tie, No. 18 Virginia stands at 28-7-1 overall and at 9-6-1 in the ACC. Georgia Tech, ranked eighth in the country, is 21-8-1 overall and 10-5-1 in the league.

Dan Grovatt (So., Tabernacle, N.J.) had three hits and an RBI for Virginia, who finished with 10 hits. Three of Virginia’s four runs came on two-out hits.
Is he related to Dr. Grovatt?

There are six ACC teams currently in the USA TODAY/ESPN Top 25 Coaches' Poll: UNC (2), Miami (5), Georgia Tech (8), Virginia (14), Clemson (20) and Florida State (25).

PICTURE OF THE DA(L)Y

John Daly was at The Masters, but he wasn’t playing golf. Here’s the scoop.

Can a brother spare a wing?

PICTURE OF THE DAY

0-162? The Nats are 0-7. The record for futility at the beginning of a season in the National League is 0-14 and in the American League 0-21 (the 1988 Orioles).

Here, Adam Dunn #44 of the Washington Nationals is congratulated by Cristian Guzman #15 after hitting a home run in the seventh inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Nationals Park on April 13, 2009 in Washington, DC.

Didn't help. Nats lost.

(Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

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