Friday, July 24, 2009

JORDAN ATTACKED BY CRAZED DUKE FAN WITH GIANT INFLATABLE PENIS?

We checked with various psychiatrists and psychologists and inquired if sometimes a large inflatable penis is nothing more than a large inflatable penis? Oddly, none of them returned our calls…

Recently, Michael Jordan was seemingly serenaded by just such a large inflatable male sex organ complete with a Duke logo while playing golf in a celebrity tournament in Reno. (No, he wasn’t attacked, the headline was just a “grabber” to get you to read the story! )

This would be the same celeb gig where Tony Romo got ink for breaking up (again) with Jessica Simpson (no doubt over that horrific blue and red horizontal stripe dress she wore while butchering the national anthem at Tiger’s tourney recently in D.C.) and where former Virginia quarterback Matt Schaub beaned a female spectator on the top of the head. (He was mortified by all accounts.)

Apparently the whole penis-weilding caper was part of a bachelorette party gone wild according to Busted Coverage.

According to various sources, Michael was amused, but clearly tournament organizers and the local constable serving as security were not…

The big giant pink Blue Devil also made its way onto the NBC broadcast of the event.

TWO ACC FOOTBALL PLAYERS MAKE HALL OF FAME

The newest class of the College Football Hall of Famers spent an event-packed weekend celebrating with the South Bend community as the highest honor in college football was bestowed upon them.

Two ACC players from current ACC schools were in the class of 2009 which included Troy Aikman, John Cooper and Lou Holtz.

Here Ron Simmons, Florida State nose guard 1977-1980, laughs as he is introduced during the Hall of Famer Pep Rally Saturday July 18, 2009 in South Bend, Ind. Coaches and players were introduced and presented with their official Hall of Fame blazers.

Below, Virginia offensive tackle Jim Dombrowski, 1982-1985, reacts during the Enshrinement Parade.

2009 Enshrinees
PLAYERS

Troy Aikman, UCLA
Roger Brown, Maryland-Eastern Shore
Billy Cannon, Louisiana State
Fred Dean, Louisiana Tech
Jim Dombrowski, Virginia
Pat Fitzgerald, Northwestern
Wilber Marshall, Florida
Rueben Mayes, Washington State
Randall McDaniel, Arizona State
Don McPherson, Syracuse
Sam Mills*, Montclair State
Jay Novacek, Wyoming
Dave Parks, Texas Tech
Ron Simmons, Florida State
Rod Smith, Missouri Southern State
Thurman Thomas, Oklahoma State
Arnold Tucker, Army

COACHES
Volney Ashford*, Missouri Valley
John Cooper, Tulsa, Arizona State, Ohio State
Jim Donnan, Marshall, Georgia
Lou Holtz, William & Mary, North Carolina State, Arkansas, Minnesota, Notre Dame, South Carolina

FORMER UNC FOOTBALL STANDOUT DIES

Steve Streater was a standout defensive back for the University of North Carolina. He was so good, he was signed as a free agent to play in the NFL by the Washington Redskins. That’s the good news.

The bad news was that Streater flew to Washington D.C. to sign his contract, and upon his return to Raleigh he was in an auto accident near the Raleigh-Durham airport. Streater, who was not wearing a seat belt, suffered a serious spinal injury that left him paralyzed.

Streater snagged five interceptions and averaged more than 43 yards per punt during his senior year, making him the first player in the history of the ACC to be named all-conference at two positions – DB and punter.

Off the field, Streater lived it up, persuading his teammates to wear their jerseys and hit the downtown nightspots. He started a fashion revolution among his fellow defensive backs to wear gloves.

Evidently, Streater was the same upbeat and positive guy after the accident as he was before –not complaining about his misfortune while concentrating on what he could accomplish which included going back to school and getting his degree in education.

Along the way, Streater worked in a dance studio and coached a semi-pro football team. He managed a auto detailing business, coordinated NC’s Students Against Driving Drunk program and he helped persuade legislators to pass a seat-belt law in North Carolina.

Before the 1984 Los Angeles Olympic Games, Streater carried the Olympic torch.

He died from complications related to his paralysis.

LOTS OF IMPORTANT INFO OVER ON ESPN YOU’LL NEVER GET AT T.A.H.

Look, we’ve told you before that we aren’t gonna tell you what your favorite school's biggest football recruit had for breakfast this morning. And we have fessed up that the reason for that is part laziness and part not giving a you-know-what. Same is true for that 6’9 kid that can jump over a house…When he’s in the league (or he commits a crime), we’ll pay attention.

However, Heather Dinich over at ESPN gets paid to care and she does a good job of it. Recently, she has broken the league down team by team and position by position. She has also done a nice piece on the best seniors in ACC football and the seniors who aren’t playing ACC football, but should be – at least, chronologically so.

For all the scoop, click here.

DUKE CONTINUES TO EMULATE BIG TIME PROGRAMS BY GIVING PLAYERS THE BOOT

The Duke University football team continues its climb toward credibility by tossing another productive player off the team.

In a university statement released this afternoon, Duke coach Cutcliffe said junior running back Tony Jackson was dismissed for "failing to uphold the standard of conduct expected of a Blue Devil football student-athlete."

Jackson's dismissal is effective "immediately," according to the statement. No other details were released.

A 5-foot-10, 190-pound junior from Rochester, N.Y., Jackson started three games and played in 11 games last season, rushing 76 times for 259 yards while catching 12 passes for an additional 106 yards and one touchdown.

So what does "failing to uphold the standard of conduct expected of a Blue Devil football student-athlete” mean. Did Jackson get lousy grades and play well like other D1 football players?

PICTURE(S) OF THE DAY

PERFECT. Pitcher Mark Buehrle #56 of the Chicago White Sox reacts in celebration after pitching a perfect game against the Tampa Bay Rays at U.S. Cellular Field on July 23, 2009 in Chicago, Illinois. The White Sox defeated the Rays 5-0. It was only the 18th perfect game pitched in the majors.

Pretty amazing, when you consider that MLB plays more than 2,400 games per season.

It wasn’t all easy though, and it took a spectacular home-run-stealing catch (complete with a heart stopping post-catch bobble) by Dewayne Wise to preserve the perfect game and no-hitter.

(Photo by Scott Boehm/Getty Images and Phil Velasquez/Chicago Tribune)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 2

WEATHER FUNK. Fred Funk, former golf coach at the University of Maryland, and his caddie wait in the rain on the ninth hole during the second round of The Senior Open Championship presented by MasterCard held on the Old Course at Sunningdale Golf Club on July 24, 2009 in Sunningdale, England.

Second round play was eventually suspended. Funk was the first round leader.

(Photo by Andrew Redington/Getty Images)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 3

IT’S NOT 1944. Army head coach Rich Ellerson and Notre Dame head coach Charlie Weiss pose during a press conference announcing that Yankee Stadium will play host to the 2010 Notre Dame v Army college football game on July 20, 2009 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City.

The game is to be played on November 20, 2010.


(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 4

NICE HELMETS. US cycling Team Columbia-High Road (THR)'s leader Mark Cavendish of Great Britain (r) sprints on the finish line on July 24, 2009 at the end of the 195 km and nineteenth stage of the 2009 Tour de France cycling race run between Bourgoin-Jallieu and Aubenas.

That’s Thor Hushovd of Norway (l) with the green swiss cheese helmet.

(Photo by Pascal Pavani/AFP/Getty Images)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 5

SEEING DOUBLE. Paola Espinosa and Laura Sanchez of Mexico compete in the Women's 3m Synchro Springboard during the 13th FINA World Championships at the Stadio del Nuoto on July 24, 2009 in Rome, Italy.

(Photo by Lars Baron/Getty Images)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

UVA STARTS FIRST ACC ELEPHANT POLO TEAM

Evidently, it wasn’t enough for the University of Virginia’s men’s and women’s polo teams to win both national championships. Now the Wahoos are branching out and starting the first ever ACC elephant polo squad seen here in an early scrimmage against UNC.
(The equipment manager was fired for losing the Cav Orange helmets causing the Hoos to borrow green ones from the University of Oregon.)

“After years of mediocre football and basketball teams, and spending millions for facilities, it only makes sense to continue to look for sports in which the University’s student athletes can excel,” said Wahoo A.D. Craig Littlepage.

Littlepage inferred that certain ACC school enjoyed a climate that would make them natural for elephant raising and elephant polo. “If we can keep those folks from South Carolina from shootin’ the damn things, Clemson is a logical elephant polo power,” Littlepage said.

In addition, Littlepage suggeseted that Virginia Tech and N.C. State would be good canidates as they already have "animal colleges, or something like that."

“Besides,” he concluded, “it's not that much different from lacrosse, and I hear Tubby Smith is a big fan of the game.”


*items in italics may not be true.

(Photo: Paula Bronstein/Getty Images)

Monday, July 20, 2009

PUTTER, 8-IRON CINK WATSON AT TURNBERRY

Tom Watson had just hit a perfect drive on the 18th hole of the final round of the 138th Open Championship. He simply needed par to become the oldest golfer to win a major.

In fact, three more shots and he may have become the oldest guy to win any major championship in any sport not restricted to…well, old guys.

So there he is 187 yards away from the green. He hits an 8-iron that looks perfect. It hits in front of the green takes a hard bounce and rolls across the green to the fringe. By now everybody knows that he didn’t get up and down and went on to lose the four hole playoff to Stewart Cink who had made a clutch birdie on that same hole to tie for the lead just moments before.

Nobody would want the putt Watson had to win the British Open. We don’t want that putt for a $2 Nassau on Saturday afternoon. As ridiculous as it is to say that a man that has won 9 majors has a major weakness, it would seem fair to say it was Watson’s putting. But in the end, it wasn’t really his putter that got him.

It was that damn 8-iron.

When Watson’s approach to 18 stopped rolling in that tricky little spot up against the collar at the back of the 18th green, it had rolled 190 yards. Yes, 190 yards with a 8-iron.

Now we played some links golf once in Ireland, and at Ballybunion we recall having 193 yards to the hole. We were standing there holding a 5-iron like any normal human when the group’s caddie handed over the 8-iron.

Really?

Now on a good day, we can get that stick 165 yards – on an average day 160 yards.

Yes, it was windy, it was Ireland. So if it’s still there, and the suns up and the grass is green than you can bet the wind is blowing. But, it wasn’t THAT windy – or so we thought.

Now, we aren’t one to argue with Irish caddies. There really is no upside. So we hit the 8-rion. Hit it flush, as a matter of fact. The wind grabbed it and it landed in front of the green and rolled on. Distance travelled: 190 yards.

The point of this lovely little Irish golf tale is it’s not impossible for a 50-year-old amateur to hit an 8-iron 190 yards. Which leads us to the odd conclusion that Tom Watson may have won the British Open if he had simply chosen a 9-iron for that final approach shot.

Imagine the conversation between Watson and his caddie Neil Oxman.

Watson: It’s 187 to the flag…
Ox: Hit the 9-iron. You’re all amped up Tom, hit one less club.
Watson: Did you hear me OX, it’s 187 yards…
Ox: Hit the 9-iron.
Watson: Jeez, Ox it’s 187 EFFING yards…

Seriously, who in their right mind at that moment would have told Tom Watson to hit a 9-iron in that situation?

Well there is a guy, and he’s a caddie. His name is Alfie Fyles and he was Watson’s caddie when he beat Jack Nicklaus in the British back in 1977.

On the 72nd hole, Watson had a one stroke lead over Nicklaus. Watson was in the fairway 180 yards from the flag. Fyles offered up a seven-iron. Watson said, "You know I can only carry 160/165 with a six.”

"Ah," said Alfie, "but the way your adrenalin's pumpin', Tom."

Watson took the seven and hit it 30 inches from the cup, sank the putt and beat Nicklaus by a stroke.

As Frank DeFord said so eloquently today on Golf.com, “Tom Watson didn't lose the British Open because he was 59 years old. He lost because he was 59 years old, but playing like the 26-year-old he was back in 1977— only he didn't have that old-fashioned caddie to remind him how good and strong he was again.”

You golfers know that it’s a game of inches, and this time it was just a fraction of an inch – the difference between an 8-iron and 9-iron.

WAHOO MARINO FINISHES T38

Former University of Virginia golfer Steve Marino who was tied for the lead after the second round of the 138th Open Championship ended up +6 and tied for 38th along with the likes of Vijay Singh. Don’t worry, Marino more than covered his expenses for his first golf trip to Scotland, earning $31,176 for his effort.

For the year, Marino has now won over $1.5 million.

We have one suggestion. Better clothes and a haircut.

Marino looks a bit like the poor man’s Phil Mickelson back when Phil wore frumpy clothes before he got in good shape.

PICTURE OF THE DAY

AIR GOLF. Check out the #23 on the bottom of NBA star Michael Jordan’s driver.

Here Air Jordan tees off during the Mike Weir Classic at the Glen Abbey Golf Club in Oakville, Ontario, on Monday, July 20, 2009. Celebrities and sports stars took part in the charity day prior to the Canadian Open golf tournament, which starts Thursday.

PICTURE OF THE DAY 2

OUT OF THE DOGHOUSE? Former Atlanta Falcon quarterback, Michael Vick, left, arrives at federal court with his attorney Larry Woodward in Norfolk, Va., Monday, July 20, 2009. Vick ended his federal dogfighting sentence Monday, freeing him to lobby for a return to the field.

The first thing he should do as a free man is look up Donte’ Stallworth and punch him right in the mouth. Stallworth, who killed a man while driving drunk, was recently released from jail after just 24 days. Vick served nearly two years.

PICTURE OF THE DAY 3

R.I.P. WALTER CRONKITE. It’s ironic that just a few days ago we bid farewell to Nathans of Georgetown which was owned (key word: was) by our friend Carol Ross Joynt. Carol once worked for CBS news and Cronkite and she and her husband once had two dogs named Wally and Betsy in honor of Cronkite and his wife.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

WAHOO STUMBLES AT TURNBERRY

University of Virginia graduate Steve Marino started the day Saturday with a share of the lead in the British Open, and then in his words “Bam! I'm like 8 over on the round."

Marion would right the ship and birdie the final two holes winding up with a 6-over-par 76 Saturday. He’s now +1, five shots back of Tom Watson.

But it is the manner in which Marino got to that point -- stumbling badly on the front nine, righting himself, stumbling even more dramatically on the 15th and 16th holes, and then coming back again -- that will make Saturday such a memorable experience for the ACC golfer of the day.

"I'm really proud of the way I responded," Marino said. "That could have gotten real ugly, real quick."

SEAN MAY LOOKING FOR WORK

Former NBA lottery pick and NCAA tournament MVP Sean May – he of the 2005 NCAA Division 1 Men’s Basketball National Champion University of North Carolina Tar Heels – is looking for a job.

According to insiders at the Raleigh News & Observer, May worked out for Cleveland, Chicago, Sacramento, Portland and the Los Angeles Lakers. In an email, May said that resulted in multiple contract offers that he and his agent (Arn Tellem) are considering.

According to sources in Las Vegas (where most of the NBA's 30 teams have converged for summer league), May is in good shape -- trimmed down both in terms of weight and body fat. Perhaps May understands he's running out of chances to restore his reputation as an NBA player. Wherever that next stop is, he'll take it very seriously.

Some insiders like the Sacramento Kings as a good home for a renewed May. “The Kings aren't close to playoff contention and they need more big men. So there's playing time available, and May needs every opportunity to prove he's ready to contribute. He's no longer a former lottery pick; he's a guy in search of work.”

THINGS THAT MAKE YOU GO…

Hmm…

So you have a $500,000 horse race and the first two finishers come back to the same race track a month later for the race’s big brother – the $750,000 Virginia Derby.

You add to the mix a horse that ran 12th in the Kentucky Derby who is trying turf for the first time and two other graded stakes winners and what happens?

Well…the betting public jumps off the obvious choices – Battle of Hastings (GB) (purple and yellow silks) and Straight Story who ran first and second at Colonial Downs in the $500,000 Colonial Downs Turf Cup Gr.II and make Hold Me Back the overwhelming favorite.

Hold Me Back is a graded stakes winner of the dirt, but had never run on turf. Mind you he is trained by Hall of Fame trainer Billy Mott who has won three prior Virginia Derbies.

So, then what happens? The top four finishers of the Turf Cup – Battle of Hastings (GB), Straight Story, Lime Rickey and Take the Points – finish in almost the exact same order in the Virginia Derby (Lime and Take switched places), and the 6/5 crazy favorite Hold Me Back runs fifth.

So what does the no brainer exacta of Battle of Hastings (GB) and Straight Story pay for an exact duplicate of the last time the same horses ran at the same track back in June? How about $51.20 for a $2 bet. Are you kiddin’?

Oh, and the triple (again using three of the top four from the previous race) paid $414.80.

Nice, betting public, NICE!

ROLLE STILL ROLLING

When last we saw former Florida State DB Myron Rolle he was busy accepting his Rhodes Scholarship and trying to hustle back in time for a game at Maryland. Well, he hasn’t exactly been standing still since then…

Rolle and his family recently announced plans to build the Myron L. Rolle Medical Clinic and Sports Complex, in Steventon, Exuma in the Bahamas. Rolle’s parents are from the island.

The complex will provide free health services to residents of Exuma, as well as a state-of-the-art wellness and training facilities for athletes and visitors. It will be the third clinic on the island, and greatly increase the resources and equipment.

Get the full story from Heather Dinich’s ESPN blog by clicking here.

PICTURES OF THE DAY

POISED TO MAKE HISTORY. 59-year-old Tom Watson is about to tee off in the final round of the 138th Open Championship. This photo was taken yesterday.






Here, Watson plays to the crowd on the 18th hole during round three of the 138th Open Championship on the Ailsa Course, Turnberry Golf Club on July 18, 2009 in Turnberry, Scotland.




(Photo by Warren Little/Getty Images)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 2

NICE SOCKS. Seven-time Tour de France winner and Kazakh cycling team Astana (AST)'s Lance Armstrong of the United States (R) rides with teammate, 2007 Tour de France winner Alberto Contador of Spain on July 19, 2009 in the 207,5 km and fifteenth stage of the 2009 Tour de France cycling race run between Pontarlier and Verbier (Switzerland).

(Photo by Pascal Pavani/AFP/Getty Images)

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