Friday, May 22, 2009

175,000

Thank you, we love you.

Too damn bad it ain't $175,000...

OFF SEASON RIVALRY

T.A.H. has some exclusive scoop.

According to our sources, Roy Williams (Ol 'Roy 'round here), who, lest you have forgotten, is the head coach of the 2009 NCAA Division 1 Men's Basketball National Champion North Carolina Tar Heels, decided he wanted to reach out to his old buddy Mike Krzchvbfs2ski of the Duke Blue Devils and just send him a few kind words to ease the sting of his arch rival not only kicking his navy blue (bleep) twice more this season, but also for bringing yet another NCAA trophy back to Chapel Hill where it will rest quietly gloating in the trophy case while the folks at Duke morn another early exit from the Big Dance in spite of the fact that the students and alums believe the Final Four, or at the very least, the Elite Eight, is their birthright when, in fact, history has proven otherwise (as it is want to do).

This is the card Ol' Roy sent Coach K:
And this is the card K sent in return:

*items in italics may not be true.

SID’S KIDS: N.C. STATE WANTS BACK IN THE CONVERSATION

The Wolfpack haven’t been part of the power elite in ACC basketball for sometime now. They ran Herb Sendek out of town, and now they are caterwauling about Sidney Lowe and waxing poetic over the glory days of Norm Sloan.

So the pressure was on Lowe to deliver some top recruits to brighten prospects in Raleigh. While State failed to land Raleigh wiz-kid John Wall, who chose UK over NCSU, the Wolfpack and Lowe did close like Mine That Bird.

On the final day of the spring signing period (Thursday), the Wolfpack’s basketball future looks brighter than it did at the end of the 2008-09 season.

Lowe desperately needed to add punch this spring to a front line that was scheduled to have just three players – Dennis Horner, Tracy Smith and Richard Howell – to fill two positions.

Lowe delivered, landing 6-foot-9 DeShawn Painter of Hargrave Military Academy, one of the few top-100 players who hadn’t already committed to a school.

(As you can see in this photo he’s deceptively TALL as he can almost touch the rim with his elbow!)

Seven-foot Australian Jordan Vandenberg and 6-6 Josh Davis of Raleigh’s Athens Drive High also signed in the spring, giving N.C. State a six-player class ranked No. 11 in the nation by ESPN.com.

The prize of the class remains Lorenzo Brown of Roswell, Ga., who can play point guard and shooting guard.

FOOTBALL NEWS: HEADING HOME

Miami QB Robert Marve decided he’d transfer some time ago. Problem was, he didn’t seem to know where he was going and was having some trouble finding a new home (which might have been part of the problem at Miami?).

Now he has decided he'll transfer to Purdue instead of walking on at Tennessee. Purdue announced that Marve will be a Boilermaker in a news release Thursday, May 21, 2009. He will have two years of eligibility, starting with the 2010 season.

Florida State’s Florida State's Corey Surrency is going home literally.

The NCAA has denied Surrency's final appeal to play another year. The decision Tuesday, May 19, 2009, upheld an April ruling.

It means the senior, who played just one year at Florida State, has used up his eligibility.

In a related item, Coach Bobby Bowden said, "That #1 Kid, what's his dadbern name...Currency, or something like that...he was a doggone good kid, but he couldn't throw the ball very dadblasted accurately, so we cut him loose. Damn NCAA almsot made us keep him..."

Um, coach...he was a DB...

PICTURE OF THE DAY

WHAT A DIFFERNCE A CALAPARI MAKES. Word of God Christian Academy's point guard John Wall, center, discusses his decision to commit to playing basketball at Kentucky during a news conference in Raleigh, N.C., Wednesday, May 20, 2009.

At left is Word of God Christian Academy's Dr. Frank Summerfield and at right is Wall's sister Tonya Pulley.

Wall, a likely “one-and-done” is considered one of the top guards in the country.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

WAHOO FOOTBALL: LOOKIN' FOR LOVE...

...in all the wrong places?

Oh well, it's a clever idea and well presented and we did BUY a ticket to a UVA football game last year...just one (extra kid).
Once again, an ACC school thinks T.A.H. should buy a ticket instead of having press credentials!
Wrong, we tell ya, WRONG!

ADIOS, GERALD "ELBOWS" HENDERSON

There was only one player at Duke who could have helped the Devils end their recent futility against their arch rival next season – and now he’s gone.

Gerald Henderson has officially signed with agent Arn Tellem, the school announced Tuesday. A bunch of kids at UNC who painted their noses red to look as if they too had been bloodied by Henderson’s elbow will miss him.

Henderson originally entered the draft without signing with an agent, preserving his college eligibility. But he signed with Tellem on Monday, according to a school news release.

A 6-foot-4 wing, Henderson is the 10th Duke player under Mike Krzyzewski to enter the NBA draft with college eligibility remaining. A first-team All-ACC selection, Henderson led the team in scoring at 16.5 points per game last season as a junior.

Next season Duke will return nine letterwinners, including starters Kyle Singler, Jon Scheyer, Nolan Smith and Lance Thomas.

"It's a big hit for them because I thought (Henderson) was such a catalyst and a confidence instiller on offense," Raycom TV analyst and former Blue Devil Mike Gminski said. "Obviously he could get to the rim and his jumper was much better last year. I just think they looked to him for a lot of their confidence. . . .I think it's going to put a lot of onus on (Jon) Scheyer to step up from a leadership standpoint…”

The draft is scheduled June 25 in New York.

UNLUCKY WIZARDS LOSE LOTTERY AGAIN, NOW PERFECTLY POSITIONED TO DRAFT HANSBROUGH

You were all I had left,
And now you’re leavin’ me too.
I’d like to say, don’t go away,
All that I had left, left with you.

– Amazing Rhythm Aces

Those pesky draft picks, they’ll leave you at the drop of a ping pong ball.

Tuesday night, the Wizards once again failed to get the first pick in the NBA draft in spite of having the second best chance in the lottery. Go figure. The Wiz will pick 5th overall in the June draft.

Despite abundant evidence to the contrary, Washington Wizards President Ernie Grunfeld considers himself a lucky man. He is now in the prefect position to draft either Hansbrough – Tyler or Toly.

"Once we have all our pieces out there, I think we've shown that we can compete with anyone in the league," Grunfeld said. "And we like five players in this draft. Actually, we like more than five since there are two Hansbroughs. I think we'll get a very good player. Whether we use that player on our roster or we use that in a trade-type situation, we'll explore all our options and see where it takes us."

"There's probably seven, eight, nine players plus multi-sports star Toly; that are going to be in that wheel house," Grunfeld said.

AT LEAST FOUR RANKED ACC BASEBALL TEAMS BETTER THAN NATIONALS

The Washington Nationals are running out of ways to describe a string of losses that always seem to end the same way—with a meltdown moment from the bullpen.

This time it was a wild pitch in the ninth inning – a two-out slider from Joel Hanrahan that bounced before it got to home plate. The Pirates’ Freddy Sanchez scored from third base, the deciding run that gave the Pittsburgh a 2-1 victory Wednesday night.

It was their season-high fifth straight win and the Nationals’ seventh consecutive loss.

If you’re old enough, you will remember how depressing these words are: Washington Senators.

At least they had Frank Howard…

PICTURE(S) OF THE DAY

DAMN ECONOMY. At one point, T.A.H. was working on live coverage of the Monaco Grand Prix. Then the recession happened. Damn recession.

For now, pix will have to do!

Here, McLaren Mercedes' British driver Lewis Hamilton leads Ferrari Brazilian's driver Felipe Massa, while a giant screen at the Monaco racetrack shows the view from Massa’s car during the first free practice session of the Monaco Formula One Grand Prix in Monte Carlo.

(Photos by Gerard Julien/AFP/Getty Images)

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

AN UNCONVENTIONAL TRIPLE CROWN, BUT A TRIPLE CROWN JUST THE SAME

Try as he did, Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird came up just a few jumps short and thus eliminated a potential Triple Crown at this year’s Belmont. It has to be tough for the folks at NYRA to promote the race without the possibility of the rarely accomplished feat.

At the moment, the Rachel Alexandra connections are going to see what signals she gives them following her race in Baltimore. Based on what trainer Steve Asmussen has said if she’s doing well, they may run her, but, again, they may not.

“We’re not going to tell her how she’s feeling. She’ll tell us how she’s feeling,” Asmussen said.

It doesn’t seem like there is a great deal of upside for Rachel and her connections. She’s won the Kentucky Oaks and the Preakness – in terms of her value, what difference will it really make if she wins the Belmont? The Belmont is obviously a classic, but its little used distance of 12 furlongs makes it a bit of an anomaly. Would winning at the 1 ½ mile distance enhance the value of the filly or her future offspring?

Of course, she could be the first filly to pick up two legs of the Triple Crown and that may tempt her owners.

Now there are folks out there who want to say that there would be a Triple Crown if Rachel Alexandra had run in the Kentucky Derby. That seems a bit presumptuous and it minimizes Mine That Bird’s victory. The Birdstone colt showed his class in the Preakness, and they way he skipped over that messy Churchill track can’t be ignored.

It appears that the Derby winner is headed up I95 to New York as his connections believe a smaller field and a longer race bodes well for his fast-closing colt.

“My horse will be much more suited to the Belmont: big wide track, big wide sweeping turns. It should play a little better to my horse,” trainer Chip Woolley said. “It’ll probably be a shorter field, which eliminates some of the traffic. We’re excited about going.”

Woolley said Mike Smith would remain aboard Mine That Bird, even if Rachel Alexandra doesn’t run. And then, Smith said he wouldn’t because of a previous engagement in California. Huh? Yes, yesterday’s Smith’s agent Brad Pegram, said the Hall of Fame jockey will ride Madeo in the Grade I Whittingham Stakes at Hollywood Park.

“I ride basically everything for the Mosses,” Smith said. “It’s an obligation I made and it’s a very important race for us here. (Madeo) is a very talented colt and it’s a Grade I. I have to stand by the people that stand by me all the time. Not that (Mine That Bird’s) people didn’t stand by me, but I picked that horse up over the circumstances.”

Smith won the Kentucky Derby aboard Giacomo for Shirreffs and the Mosses in 2005. He also rides the champion filly Zenyatta for them.

Now that’s good loyalty, but it’s bad math. The purse for the Belmont is $1 million while the purse for the Whittingham is $300,000. That means the winning jock in the third jewel of the Triple Crown gets $62,000 while the winning jock in the Whittingham pockets $18,600. That’s some expensive loyalty.

And that brings us to Borel. According to the Daily Racing Form, he’s the first jockey to ever get off a Kentucky Derby winner that ran back in the Preakness. Of course, he added a footnote by winning the race on his new mount.

Has one jockey ever won all three Triple Crown races on two or three different horses? Various media sources say it has never happened, but if Rachel Alexandra does run in the Belmont, the likable Cajun will be positioned to do just that. If she doesn’t run, you can bet that Borel and his agent will be burning up MTB’s connection’s cell phones looking to get back on the Derby winner.

You can also bet that is exactly the type of story the NYRA marketing folks are looking for in the absence of the traditional Triple Crown.

MIAMI HURRICANE FOOTBALL PLAYER GRADUATES

Hey, don’t get all up in T.A.H.’s grill, the headline in the Miami Herald says:

"Miami Hurricanes' Antonio Dixon Graduates With Class"

All kidding aside, at first blush it would seem logical to wonder why that is news? Surely, a bunch of Hurricanes graduated on Friday with the balance of the class of 2009…

But Dixon, a 6-2, 325-pound defensive tackle who recently signed as a free agent with our beloved and misguided Washington Redskins, has an amazing background which makes his graduation a feel good success story.

To say Dixon overcame “some obstacles” is a bit of an understatement.

How about homelessness, severe stuttering, learning disabilities and a father in prison for starters?

None the less, Dixon graduated and was one of six college athletes nationwide to receive the Wilma Rudolph Student Athlete Achievement Award – intended to honor college athletes who have overcome great personal, academic and/or emotional odds to achieve academic success.

''He has been bragging about that award for weeks,'' said roommate Spencer Adkins, a linebacker who also graduated Friday and was taken in the sixth round by the Atlanta Falcons. "He's a big-hearted, funny, loving teddy bear. School was sometimes a struggle for him, but he always kept working hard."

''It brought tears to my eyes to look at him walk up there and get his diploma,'' said Dixon’s mother, Corenthia, who now works in the kitchen of the shelter in Overtown she and her children inhabited six times during Antonio's childhood. “He looked like one of those big judges on TV. He looked so handsome, and he was smiling all night.”

To read the entire story, click here.

DUKE PETITIONS NCAA FOR D1 FOOTBALL MAXIMUM PLAYER HEIGHT OF 72 INCHES

Local papers are writing about a new Duke football recruit. Safety and running back Josh Snead committed to the Blue Devils when he finishes up at Smithfield-Selma High School.

(Does that mean they have a Smitfield’s BBQ in the high school? 'Cause that would be sweet -- Frankee)

Snead, who won’t be heading to Durham until the fall of 2010 reportedly runs a sub 4.4 forty yard dash and has a grade point average of 4.0. Very Dukeian.

Also, did we mention that he weighs 180 pounds and he’s 5’9”?

"Duke's academics appealed to him," said SSS coach Anthony Barbour. "I think he is going to be an outstanding college player."

He sounds like a nice kid, maybe he’ll grow…

PICTURE(S) OF THE DAY

MISSED THE MARK. You’re supposed to stand on the mark, not over the mark. And what happened to the traditional “X”?

Here, Tanae Davis-Cain #20 (Florida State) of the Detroit Shock poses during the 2009 Detroit Shock Media Day at the Palace of Auburn Hills on May 18, 2009 in Auburn Hills, Michigan.

Evidently, the Chicago Sky doesn’t have or can’t afford unis…Brooke Wyckoff (also formerly of Florida State) of said Sky poses for picture during her team's WNBA Media Day on May 18, 2009 at the Attack Athletics in Chicago, Illinois.

(Photos by Allen Einstein/NBAE via Getty Images and Randy Belice/NBAE via Getty Images)

PICTURE OF THE DAY

ON THE POLE. Helio Castroneves, driver of the #3 Team Penske Dallara Honda celebrates Pole Position during qualifying for the IRL IndyCar Series 93rd running of the Indianapolis 500 on May 10, 2009 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana.

(Getty Images)

PICTURE OF THE DA(L)Y

NICE PANTS. John Daly of the USA and Retief Goosen of South Africa pose for a picture during the Previews of the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth on May 19, 2009 in Virginia Water, England.

(Photo by Warren Little/Getty Images)

Monday, May 18, 2009

FUTURE HOKIE FLIKEID PERSISTENT IN TICKET QUEST


By Brian Scheulen, T.A.H. Special Correspondent

A wonderful event was held at the Fauquier Springs (Hackberry Creek) Country Club this past Wednesday evening. The Fauquier Hokie Club hosted Virginia Tech head football coach Frank Beamer and ladies basketball coach Beth Dunkenberger at its annual Orange & Maroon Tour dinner.

Being equipped with spidey-like hearing and an excellent seat at the coach's table, I was privy to all the intimate conversations with Coach Beamer. Topics included, but were not limited to, golfing with Dell Curry and Nick Saban, Ralph's waist-line, the opening game with Alabama,Tyrod's back-up, Ju-Ju, Al Groh and hell freezing over.

By far, the highlights of the evening, were the actions of young Davis Flikeid. Armed with only a pen and the tenacity of a hornet, young D.F. was bound and determined to defend his bids on the silent auction game tickets that he knew were his and his alone.

It was a magic dance he performed as people would get up to use the restroom, sneaking over and heading them off at the pass, bombarding them with questions such as “Where are you going?” and “What are you bidding on?”

When one person got up, Davis swooped in and slyly asked "Hey, how's it going? What are you bidding on?" The gentleman replied, "I'm going to the bathroom, What are you bidding on?" Davis answered, "Oh, nothing. I'm not bidding on anything. I'm just hanging around, doing nothing." as he quickly escorted the man past the bid sheet table and returned to his defensive position.

More and more people began to rise and check on their bids. Davis became flustered. It was too much for him fend off. Some Bob guy kept upping the bids on him and he didn't know what to do.

So he did the only thing a 7 year-old, who could barely reach the table could do....he took all of the pens.

When all was said and done, young D.F. won himself a pair of tickets to two games and single-handedly helped the Fauquier Hokie Club raise several hundred extra dollars by jacking up those other bids!

Nice, Davis, NICE!

EVIDENTLY IT ISN’T TOO EARLY FOR FOOTBALL NEWS

Let’s get a few things straight right off the bat. The fact that any gainfully employed professional – let’s say like one CPA and Virginia Tech Hokie Brian Scheulen, for example – knows how deep his alma mata is at tight end is “moderately disconcerting.” Nobody should know that much about tight ends other than their coaches and/or their families.

Secondly, who names their kid Ju-Ju? Seriously, who?

That said, here is Brian’s take on the current status of his beloved Hokies after last Wednesday’s Hokie Club gig.

To appease the Fauquier Seminole CC Nation, I offer the following football points to ponder:


1. Frank has convinced himself, at least, that Ju-Ju Clayton will be ready to step in and fill the role as "hand-offer" for the 20-25 plays that Tyrod WILL miss due to the inevitable "tweaked" ankle he will suffer sporadically throughout the season.

2. The O-Line will be beastly. With a combined 100 games under their belts, this unit is one of the most seasoned and experienced in the nation. Even Bobby Duvall would call them "grizzled". They are all well fed.

3. The secondary will be fine. They are going through position shifts which seems to be an annual occurrence in recent years.

4. They are super-deep at tight end. Three of these guys will be playing on Sundays in the near future, probably on both sides of the ball.

5. Running-backs. Are you kidding me? Tech could have two 1,000 yard rushers standing behind Tyrod. Frank smirked when I asked him about the possibility of three super-studs in the 2010 season with the addition of VHSL Offensive Player of the Year David Wilson, who will surely red-shirt this year.

6. Defensive end is a little shakey right now. A converted tight-end will likely play opposite of Jason "All" Worilds who sat out this spring recovering from shoulder surgery.

7. The Lonely Kickers - Tech is still looking for a consistant place-kicker. They may find one in a true freshman as soon as he graduates from dumb ol' high school. The punter is a Bowden, so I know there will be no criticisms there from John, plus the guy has a hell of a leg.

8. The wide receivers were very young last year and we're just hoping that with that one rough year, a ton of lessons were learned.

There is certainly lots to be smiling about in Blacksburg.

Thank you, Brian and we look forward to your report on what Coach Dunkenberger had to say about the Lady Hokies hoops squad.

DUKE, VIRGINIA ADVANCE IN NCAA LAX TOURNAMENT

So the Wahoo lacrosse squad has a kid named Steele Stanwick. Is that great or what?

Or and this Steele kid can play. He scored two goals and had five assists to help top-seeded Virginia blow out Johns Hopkins 19-8 in the quarterfinals of the NCAA tournament on Sunday.

Shamel Bratton scored a career-high five goals and Garrett Billings added four more and three assists for Virginia (15-2), which advanced to semifinals for the seventh time since 1999.

Danny Glading and Rhamel Bratton scored two goals apiece for the Cavaliers, who will face Cornell (12-3) next Saturday.

In the other quarterfinal Duke’s lacrosse team continues to do what the hoops squad cannot – beat the Tar Heels (again). Yep, eleven straight times. Ouch.

Senior attackman Ned Crotty scored two goals and handed out six assists to lead third-seeded Duke to a 12-11 win over sixth-seeded North Carolina and guide the Blue Devils to their third consecutive national semifinal appearance. A crowd of 12,142 at Navy-Marine Corps Stadium witnessed the Heels ferocious comeback fall short.

Duke (15-3) advances to face second-seeded Syracuse next Saturday at 12 p.m., on Espn2 at Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, Mass. The national semifinal berth is the fifth in school history (1997, 2005, 2007, 2008 & 2009), where Duke holds an all-time record of 2-2.

Since the arrival of head coach John Danowski prior to the 2007 season, the Blue Devils are 50-8 overall including a 16-1 ledger versus ACC opponents. Duke has now won 10 of its last 13 NCAA Tournament games and improved to 16-6 all-time in the event when scoring 10 or more goals.

With his eight-point effort, Crotty moves into the NCAA lead for total points in 2009, passing North Carolina’s Billy Bitter who entered Sunday’s contest one point ahead of Crotty, 69-68. Crotty now has 76 points on the year including a nation’s-best 53 assists. Bitter was held to just two assists against the Blue Devils, with sophomore defenseman Michael Manley drawing the primary assignment.

Duke got goals from eight different players with sophomore Zach Howell leading the way with three goals. North Carolina was led by Wagner and Delaney with three tallies each.

(Photos by Algerina Perna and Peyton Williams)

THINGS THAT MAKE YOU GO…

Hmmm…

So now they’re selling the floor. And, in spite of current economic conditions, it ain’t cheap.

Your standard 12x12 autographed by the seniors and departing juniors will set you back a mere $499 plus tax and shipping.

The Final Four Floor Store…Hey, it’s gotta nice ring to it!

IF A DRUNK FALLS IN THE INFIELD AND NO ONE’S THERE TO SEE HIM…

There has been plenty of clamor about the infield at this year’s Preakness. As a Preakness veteran – both in the infield and the owner’s box, we find it compelling. If you, loyal reader, do not, we apologize.

Having said that, a dude named Bradford Cumming’s wrote a piece for the Paulick Report titled “If A Drunk Falls In The Infield…”

Now Brad – we surmise his friends call him Brad – is a funny guy and this story is worth reading if you’re interested. It includes, among other things, this quote from a Baltimore police officer: “There ain’t no tits.”

This photo of the ridiculously sparse crowd was taken by our friend Nick Hahn who was covering the race for the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

PICTURE(S) OF THE DAY

WHO’S MORE POPULAR? Seems as English footballer David Beckham and British Prime Minister Brown both showed up at Wembley Stadium recently to hype England’s bid for the 2018 World Cup. These photographs make it abundantly clear who is the more popular of the two.

(Photos by Adrian Dennis/AFP/Getty Images)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 2

PLEASE STOP WASTING THE GOOD CHAMPAGNE. Jeez.

The England cricket team celebrates their 2-0 series win over the West Indies after the second NPower cricket Test match at Chester-le-Street in northeast England, on May 18, 2009.

(Photo by Paul Ellis/AFP/Getty Images)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 3

ALL TOO FAMILIAR. J.J. Redick with Orlando Magic bench mates Jameer Nelson, Courtney Lee and Jeremy Richardson watch from the pine late in the fourth quarter against the Boston Celtics in Game 7 of the NBA basketball Eastern Conference semifinal playoff series in Boston Sunday, May 17, 2009.

The Magic won 101-82 and advanced to the conference finals against the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

THE REAL DEAL – TIMES TWO

Yesterday’s Preakness in Baltimore made four things very clear.

ONE – As Calvin Borel has said continuously, Rachel Alexandra may well be the best horse in the country. Even while she had some difficulty handling the track (according to Borel) she beat the boys and became the eleventh filly to win a Triple Crown race.

She joins an exclusive club that has as its members Rags To Riches (Belmont, 2007), Winning Colors (Kentucky Derby, 1988), Genuine Risk (Kentucky Derby, 1980), Nellie Morse (Preankess, 1924), Regret (Kentucky Derby, 1915), Rhine Maiden (Preakness, 1915), Whimsical (Preakness, 1906), Tanya (Belmont, 1905), Flocarline (Preakness, 1903) and Ruthless (Belmont, 1867).

If Rachel Alexandra’s connections decide to try the Belmont, she could become the first filly to win two Triple Crown races.

TWO – Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird proved his victory in Louisville was no fluke. If he had found an opening on the rail as he did two weeks about with Borel, MTB and Mike Smith may have caught the brilliant filly.

THREE – Nice exacta. You bet $2 on Rachel Alexandra – who won the most important three year old filly race of the spring racing season by more than 20 lengths, and Mine That Bird – who won the most important three-year-old race of the year – into an exacta and you get back $39.20. Go figure.

While the Preakness crowd collapsed from over 112,000 to approximately 77,000, they didn’t get any wiser when it comes to handicapping. An exacta involving the Kentucky Oaks winner and the Kentucky Derby winner should pay $12…!

FOUR - The Freakness is dead. Long live the Freakness. Pimlico officials decided the all day party in the infield had gotten out of control. Subsequently, they changed the cherished and traditional BYOB policy. Early beers to encourage attendance were $1, and regular ones later in the day were $3.50. The new policy, which all and all isn't a bad idea, wasn't popular and attendance plummeted. Officials expect it to pick back up once folks get used to the new policy which was designed to increase revenue and decrease debauchery. Churchill Downs made a similar move a few years back...

To see the full chart of the Preakness, click here.

CALLAGHAN, HUDSON DOMINATE LIVERPALOOZA 2009

Steve “Dirt” Callaghan (U.S. Navy, Harvard, Slippery Rock) (not pictured left) and Bob “Ike” Hudon (UNC) (also not pictured left) were two-day winners at the truncated version of Liverpalooza 2009.

Reduced from 99 holes in four days down to a mere 36 holes in two days due to economic conditions and liver preservation issues, Liverpalooza produced some equally as dreadful golf as its older siblings Liverpalooza 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008.

Callaghan and Hudson routed the group of 16 “golfers” on Friday at Stonewall Golf Club in Gainesville. A late evening blind stableford draw revealed some rather pathetic scores with the winners prevailing with a whopping 61 points…or maybe 62 or 63…we aren’t exactly sure (Woodford Reserve), but we know it was low. Jon “Chainsaw” Beirman (Duke) (pictured left), gets credit for the “Ferd.” So Duke’s not all bad…

“Dirt” and “Ike” were rewarded for their efforts with a cash prize. Callaghan wisely contributed his share to the post tournament party held at his house at this expense. Hudson tipped the bar tender $20 and contributed the balance to the “Replenishing Vice at Hole 3.5 Fund” which helped provide adult malt beverages for Saturday’s round. Well played, gents.

Cloudy skies greeted the group of 20 “golfers” for Saturday’s round at Fauquier Springs (aka Hackberry Creek) Country Club in Warrenton. Quickly dubbed, the “Ferd Is The Werd Open” by the Chobinator, the quality of play somehow miraculously improved. Must have been the “Beer Gloves.”

With a substantially bigger “cash award,” the local hackers with handicaps ranging from 6 to 19, clearly tightened their focus. Of course, the intensity of Friday’s round might have backed up a few of the weaker at heart…who knows?

After collecting the scores, it was readily apparent that a two-man Stableford score of 60-something wasn’t gonna get it done. Dirt Callaghan again topped the list firing a 77 for 40 points. M-dawg Daughtery (Penn State, George Mason, UNC Wilmington – OK, we give up there isn’t enough room here to list them all – go ahead, name a school and we’ll wager M-dawg went there at least to chase a coed) was hot on his heels with a 78 while Jr. “Fireproof” Couk (Randolph Macon) scored 39 points off a well played eighty-something.

When the blind draw got started Callaghan was again the early LIC (leader in clubhouse), combining his 40 points with the T.A.H. Editor (JMU) for a combined 72 points – where was that on Friday? Not long after that, Steve “The Mighty Chef and Roaster of Lawyers” Dill (CIA) and Dr. Rob “It’s Not A Decoration!” Flikeid (Virginia Tech, MCV) posted a tying 72. (Damn it!)

Then things got crazy – Craig “Mr.” Anderson (JMU) and Chris “Ferd Is The Werd” Choby (Harvard, Slippery Rock, Lord Fairfax) logged in with a 74! Just to make the late afternoon beer goggled math a little more complicated, the last man in, Sam Blaser (Clemson), combined with ACC rival Hudson to post another 74.

Final score: Tied 1st: 74 - Anderson-Choby and Blaser-Hudson. Tied 2nd: 72 - Dill-Flikeid and Callaghan-Petty.

It is the firm belief of T.A.H. that Dill, Flikeid, Choby, Anderson, S. Blaser and Hudson and EVERYBODY ELSE cheated. Callaghan and the Editor did not.
An investigation is underway.

Happily there were once again no injuries…OK, a few minor ones.

Flikeid (laceration-hand, self-inflicted prior to Friday’s round so it may not count), Editor (Lacerations-hand,leg, also self-inflicted when shrub crashing following Friday’s opening round, definitely counts) and Mike “Sputnik” Mouganis (bruised – ego, self-inflicted after posting all-time Liverpalooza low stableford score of 18 points.)

Apparently, the “Mougy Rule” of -1 point for more than a double bogey came back to seriously haunt its namesake. Sorry, dude.

Tidbits:
On the #6 tee box:
Dill: If I make a hole-in-one, I’m gonna need a ride home.
THT3 (Mary Washington, Richmond): Dill, I’ll give you a ride…
Dill: I’d prefer the police.

On Dirt’s front porch:
Jr.: Speaking of Vietnam…

On #16 fairway:
Flikeid: You see this (pointing to head and imitating his dental assistant), it’s not a decoration!

On the #1 tee box:
Golf pro while taking group shot on first tee: How do you make this camera zoom in?
Camera owner: You could take a step forward…

TERPS LOSE IN NCAA LAX TOURNAMENT

The Maryland men's lacrosse team gave it their best shot, but in the end it is the No. 2 seed Syracuse Orange advancing in the NCAA tournament after defeating the Terps 11-6 in the quarterfinals at Hofstra's Shuart Stadium Saturday afternoon.

A surprise awaited the Terps right off the bat as Syracuse's starting goalie John Galloway was forced to the sidelines due to the flu. In stepped junior Al Cavalieri and he helped the Orange build a 3-0 lead in the first quarter on goals by Kenny Nims, Josh Amidon and Dan Hardy.

The biggest development of the quarter however centered on Maryland starting goalie Brian Phipps. After making a big save with just over a minute left in the first and SU leading 2-0, Phipps jumped up but appeared to injure his knee, forcing the change to senior Jason Carter.

Virginia plays Johns Hopkins today and Duke faces off against UNC.

To see the full bracket, click here.

PICTURE OF THE DAY

MORNING FOG. Mine That Bird leaves the racetrack after the morning workout with exercise rider Charlie Figueroa and Farm Manager Kelly Denninton at Pimlico Racecourse on May 15, 2009 in Baltimore, Maryland.

(Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 2

DON’T GET MAD, GET EVEN. The Maryland men lost to Syracuse, but the girls whipped the Orangewomen. Members of the Maryland women's lacrosse team celebrate the 12-10 victory over Syracuse.

The Terps remained unbeaten and advanced to the NCAA Division I final four where they will play ACC rival North Carolina.

To see the bracket, click here.


(Photo by Amy Davis)

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