Saturday, October 31, 2009

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!


WEEK 9: ACC FOOTBALL

Saturday, Oct 31

N.C. STATE @ FLORIDA STATE (-10), 12:00 PM, TV: RAYCOM (XM 190, Sirius 211)

Coastal Carolina (Chanticleers, 7,534 students, Conway, SC) @ CLEMSON (NL), 1:30 PM, TV: ESPN360.com (XM 192, Sirius 213)

MIAMI (-6.5) @ WAKE FOREST, 3:30 PM, TV: ABC/ESPN2 (XM 190/191, Sirius 211/212)

DUKE @ VIRGINIA (-7), 3:30 PM, TV: ESPN360.com (XM 193, Sirius 214)

Central Michigan (Chippewas, 20,092 students, Mount Pleasant, MI) @ BOSTON COLLEGE (-5.5), 3:30 PM, TV: ESPNU (XM 244, Sirius 216)

GEORGIA TECH (-13.5) @ Vanderbilt (Commodores, 12,093 students, Nashville, TN), 7:30 PM, TV: CSS (XM 190)

SATURDAY MORNING BREAKFAST LINKS

Posted by ESPN.com's Heather Dinich:

*Did Virginia Tech really lose at home last night to a UNC team that was ranked 114th in the country in total offense?

*North Carolina, though, got redemption, and so did quarterback T.J. Yates.

*It could be the kind of win that gives the Tar Heels the jump-start they need to reach the postseason.

*Here's a new concept -- receivers who block. And you thought Georgia Tech's guys were out there playing cards.

*Despite the Terps' struggles and two wins, coach Ralph Friedgen doesn't sound too convincing when talking about getting the younger players some experience.

*BC's kicker, former walk-on Steve Aponavicius, is three points away from becoming the Eagles' all-time leading scorer.

*If you haven't already, start paying attention to Clemson's DeAndre McDaniel. What appears to be amazing instincts is also the result of a lot of study time.

*Miami quarterback Jacory Harris has been up and down performance-wise, but his emotions have stayed the same. That's good news for the Canes.

*FSU offensive coordinator Jimbo Fisher says the Noles' ground game isn't struggling.

*Wake Forest has a knack for finding guys who can play who weren't highly recruited, but Lee Malchow? He wasn't offered a scholarship by anyone.

*Things have changed, and when Duke and Virginia meet on Saturday, the two programs will look a lot more similar than they have in the past.

*UNC’s linebacker Quan Sturdivant’s post game sportsmanship after the Virginia Tech game is worth noting.

PICTURE OF THE DAY

WINNING SMILE. South Florida quarterback B.J. Daniels (7) smiles as he shakes hands with West Virginia quarterback Coley White after an NCAA college football game Friday, Oct. 30, 2009, in Tampa, Fla. South Florida upset West Virginia 30-19.

Daniels accounted for 336 yards of offense (232 passing, 106 rushing) and 3 touchdowns for the Bulls.

(AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 2

HAPPY KICKERS. Punter Grant Shallock (39) congratulates UNC's Casey Barth who kicked the winning field goal in the Tar Heels' improbable victory over the Hokies on Thursday night.

When we said Barth looked 15-years-old, we weren’t kidding.

(Photo by Robert Willett/Raleigh News & Observer)


Friday, October 30, 2009

HEELS OUTLAST HOKIES

Butch Davis’ North Carolina Tar Heels came to Blacksburg not only win less in ACC play, but also a 15.5 point underdog to the #14 Hokies. The Heels (5-4, 1-3 ACC) left a hushed Lane Stadium with an improbable last second 20-17 victory after Casey Barth (who appears here to be every bit of 15-years-old) made a chip shot field goal (21 yards) on the final play of the game. The game winning drive was set up by a fumble by Virginia Tech’s super frosh Ryan Williams.

Williams who entered the night with five 100 yard games, needed just a few more yards to break the threshold yet again when he fumbled at the N.C. 24 yard line with just 2:02 left to play with the score tied 17-17. The outstanding halfback was inconsolable as he sensed his error had doomed his team’s chances on a Halloween themed evening.

The Tar Heel defense, which had collapsed in the second half against Florida State a week earlier, kept the Hokies (5-3, 3-2) at bay while UNC’s herky-jerky offense found a way to put up enough points to win.

A week after Tech head coach Frank Beamer was embroiled in a controversy over uncalled penalties in a loss to Georgia Tech, the officials again could not avoid the spotlight. Both Hokie touchdowns were very close calls that were quickly reviewed and let stand while a questionable interference call helped fuel the Heels’ game tying drive.

"I've never really had this feeling before," UNC QB T.J. Yates said after making several key completions and throwing one horrific pick deep in his own territory that led to the Hokies second touchdown. "Kicking it at the last second? It just sends chills down your spine." Yates was 18 for 28 and 131 yards and two touchdowns while his “never really had this feeling before” quote speaks volumes about the tradition of Tar Heel football futility. Yates is a junior.

Of the 66,223 crammed into Lane Stadium a rock solid 60,000 left unhappy stunned by the final minutes of the game. But no one felt worse than Williams, who started the night averaging 119 rushing yards, gained 96 and was hoping to lead the team down the field to a win until he lost the ball.

"As of right now, there probably isn't really anything they can say to lift me up because regardless of what anybody says, personally I feel like I kind of took the game away from us today," Williams said. "It was on the line, it was in my hands and I fumbled."

Virginia Tech opened the game gaining 45 yards on the first two plays of the game and seemed primed for another big Thursday night. But Jarrett Boykin fumbled after a 20-yard reception on the second play and the Tar Heels recovered, a harbinger of things to come.

FOUR ACC SCHOOLS IN PRE-SEASON HOOPS POLL

The 2009 NCAA Division 1 Men’s Basketball National Champions, the University of North Carolina Tar Heels are the highest ranked ACC team in the ESPN/USA Today and the AP pre-season polls. The Heels were fourth in the ESPN poll and sixth in the AP.

Duke, Clemson and Georgia Tech were also ranked in both polls.

ESPN/USA Today: 1) Kansas (27) 2) Michigan St. (3) 3) Texas 4) NORTH CAROLINA (1) 5) Kentucky 6) Villanova 7) Purdue 8) DUKE 9) West Virginia 10) Butler 11) Tennessee 12) California 13) Washington 14) Connecticut 15) Michigan 16) Oklahoma 17) Ohio St. 18) Minnesota 19) Mississippi St. 20) GEORGIA TECH 21) Georgetown 22) Dayton 23) Louisville 24) CLEMSON 25) Syracuse

NEWS FLASH: T.A.H. WAS WRONG AND AS A RESULT “JOURNALISM IS DEAD”

Hey, all kiddin’ aside, we take our journalistic responsibilities seriously here at T.A.H. After all, we remain damn proud of the journalism degree we earned at J.M.U. some 30 years ago and the almost five long years it took to get the darn thing!

Having worked as a reporter, editor and columnist for various publications, we take pride here at T.A.H. Worldwide Media Heaquarters in getting the story right. After all, we are the “ACC blog of record.”

At issue is the following sentence: Beamer then lauded ACC supervisor of officials Doug Rhoads, who determined Monday after studying 11 video clips from the game submitted to him by the Hokies that the Georgia Tech should have been called for illegal blocks on four plays.

Our old friend Anonymous piped up and said: Nowhere has Doug Rhoads stated that "Georgia Tech should have been called for illegal blocks on four plays". Consider your source before repeating a story. Jornalism is dead....

Well, we did consider our source, and we can’t find the exact place we got this notion. We believe it came from ESPN and they extrapolated incorrectly that after Beamer complained about four calls, Rhoads confirmed them.

What actually happened is the ACC said some calls were missed, but Rhoads, declined to name the number of calls that were missed or to identify specific plays that were illegal which is status quo for the league.

The bottomline is Georgia Tech won the game, so if you read this far, we’re afraid we’ve sort of wasted your time.

QUOTE OF THE DAY

"I think that he's probably playing as good or better -- I know he's playing as good or better as any quarterback I've seen this year. I haven't seen all of them (Heisman candidates), but it would be hard for somebody to play better. Now, if we were having a great year, his name would pop right up there. But we're still on the losing side, 3-4, and to me you've got to have success with it."

-- FSU coach Bobby Bowden on Christian Ponder’s Heismann Trophy chances.

OKLAHOMA STATE RECEIVER SUSPENDED BY NCAA BECAUSE OF FLORIDA STATE

Huh?

Allow us to explain.

Oklahoma State star wide receiver Dez Bryant had a perfectly legal “relationship” with Deon Sanders. The NCAA sent their “investigators” to talk to Bryant about this entirely legal “relationship,” and Bryant panicked and lied to the investigators.

So what did they NCAA do when they discovered that a player lied to them about something that was perfectly legal? Easy, they suspended him for the ENTIRE SEASON!

Why you ask? Isn’t it obvious?

Deon Sanders (the subject of these heinous suspension generating fibs) went to Florida State, and, in case you hadn’t noticed the NCAA is plenty pissed off at FSU.

Yes, you read that correctly - the NCAA ruled Tuesday that the junior All-American will not be eligible to play until September 2010, possibly bringing his college career to an end if he enters the NFL draft.

Bryant said he's disappointed in the NCAA's decision, “but I respect the process." "I thank Oklahoma State for appealing the decision and look forward to when I can tell my side of the story," Bryant said Tuesday night.

What he should have said is “I’m going to ask OSU super alum T. Boone Pickens to bankroll my lawsuit against these miserable, stupid, over-regulating, short-sighted, moronic a-holes.” That’s what he should have said.

"I just felt the manner in which I was interrogated by the NCAA was an experience I never had before," Bryant said. "The manner they asked the questions led me to believe that I did something wrong when in fact I had not. My mistake was not seeking advice prior to being interrogated and then turning around and not telling the truth."

Bryant has sat the last four games for the Cowboys (6-1, 3-0 in Big 12), who host No. 3 Texas on Saturday night in a game that could determine which team plays for the Big 12 title.

Bryant caught 87 passes for 1,480 yards and 19 touchdowns last season while also scoring twice on punt returns. This season, Bryant led the team with 17 catches for 323 yards and four touchdowns through OSU's first three games.

Nice, NCAA, NICE!

THURSDAY LINKS

Posted by ESPN.com's Heather Dinich:

*Can UNC reedem itself on national television tonight? If it does, it's going to need a better performance from quarterback T.J. Yates, who threw a costly interception last week and hasn't been as productive this year.

*Is tonight's game simply an opportunity to see the Hokies pound somebody?

*As long as Virginia Tech doesn't suffer a Georgia Tech hangover, the Hokies still have plenty to play for this year, including another 10-win season and a possible BCS bowl bid.

*Boston College is in the midst of yet another transition, and caught in the middle of it all is running back Montel Harris.

*Florida State's receivers have been much more productive this year, and some of that can be attributed to the discipline that's been instilled in them this year.

*There's a reason Chuck Amato hasn't been a hot topic this week as he prepares to face his former team -- both Amato and NC State have their own problems now.

*Miami quarterback Jacory Harris has no plans on changing his approach, despite throwing a league-leading 10 turnovers this season.

*Clemson's tight ends have gotten more involved in the passing game in recent weeks.

*Georgia Tech's key to winning games this year starts in the second half, where the Jackets string together lengthy drives and really control the clock.

*Here are some ACC/SEC rankings for you, and there are five teams worse than Duke this year.

*Wake Forest enters Saturday's game against Miami searching for more offense. It's disappeared the past two games.

PICTURE OF THE DAY

ALL EVEN. Hideki Matsui #55 of the New York Yankees hits a solo home run in the sixth inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Yankee Stadium on October 29, 2009 in the Bronx borough of New York City.

The Yankess tied the World Series at 1 game apiece with a 3-1 victory.

(Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 2

ZOOM ZOOM. Brawn GP's Brazilian driver Rubens Barrichello drives at the Yas Marina Circuit on October 30, 2009 in Abu Dhabi, during the first free practice session of the Abu Dhabi Formula One Grand Prix.

(Photo by Karim Sahib/AFP/Getty Images)

Thursday, October 29, 2009

INK GONE WRONG

This according to USAToday:

Josh Haden enrolled at Boston College as one of the top recruits in the country. The sophomore running back had established himself as the team's No. 2 ball carrier behind Montel Harris. The Eagles are 5-3 and appear headed to a bowl game after starting the season picked last in their division.

But Haden, along with quarterback Jessie Tuggle, announced plans to transfer from Boston College this week. Haden carried 59 for 221 yards this season. Tuggle had started the team's first three games before being benched behind Dave Shinskie.

Besides looking for another school, Haden, whose brother Joe is the starting cornerback at Florida, has another decision to make. What to do about the BC logo tattooed on his right shoulder. What might have seen a good idea now may require a procedure to erase the memory of his time on Chesnut Hill…

ACC THURSDAY NIGHT FOOTBALL

NORTH CAROLINA @ VIRGINIA TECH (-16.5), 7:30 PM, TV: ESPN (XM 190/191, Sirius 211/212)

Just to liven things up Hokie punter Brent Bowden has recorded his own version of the Virginia Tech entry anthem Metallica’s “Enter Sandman.”

Bowden recorded the song and taped a video of himself playing it last week. It will be spliced in with the usual entrance video. Oh, and he can punt too. Through seven games, Bowden is leading the league and tied for 11th in the country with an average of 44.1 yards on 34 punts with a long of 59 yards. He’s had 10 kicks downed inside the 20-yard line with eight kicks of 50 yards or more.

“I understand he plays a good guitar, and he’s got a good thing for the crowd there tomorrow night,” head coach Frank Beamer said. “That was different. I don’t usually get into what happens before the game or after the game, but I think he’s going to play for the entrance tomorrow night. … I’m eager [to see it].”

*Point spread for recreational purposes only. Sixteen and one-half…ouch!

ANGRY HOKIE FAN CALLS OUT STUPID WAHOOS

Evidently, the guy over at Fight For Old DC is a Hokie - and an angry one at that after UVA's loss to Georgia Tech. This is just a guess based on this post from the other day…

It goes like this:

Dear Stupid Wahoos,

You know, you hadn't lost to the Yellow Jackets at home in 19 years. Shocker that you choked on your own ascots when we needed you to come through for us. Guess what? We're bringing the pain. November 21st, you're dead. Cavman will not have any adventures that day, except the one where he's getting bent over in the locker room.


Your little odyssey to end the five year losing streak to us? Just drop it. You don't stand a chance. Mikell Simpson, or whatever stupid way you spell his name, is going to have -39 yards rushing. The seven quarterbacks you use? They might as well be a part of a funeral march, because they're only there to watch the offense die. Al Groh will poop his fanny pack after Bud Foster rams it down his throat.

Eat it jerks.

Love,
The Hokies

Seriously, he didn’t really think the Hoos could beat GT, did he?

Evidently...

REDSKINS AND FIRST AMENDMENT KISS AND MAKE UP…SORT OF

Again, according to Dan Steinberg who is all over this story at D.C. Sports Blog (which he has taken to calling the D.C. Sports BOG for what seems like pretty obvious reasons), the Redskins have clarified the tee-shirt situation from Monday night.

Redskins Chief Operating Officer David Donovan said this about the shirts:

"Our policy regarding messages on T-shirts and other clothing is simple: if it doesn't display profanity, it's fine," he said. "It's not our policy to regulate clothing based on the message it displays. We've heard the anecdotal reports that some stadium personnel were being over-zealous in their handling of this matter Monday night. We apologize to any fans who were inconvenienced as well as fans who were distressed by the reports, and we'll be working with all stadium employees to be certain that the policy is correctly enforced at future games at FedExField."

He also addressed the issue of security messing with fans' shirts on 106.7 The Fan's Mike Wise Show, saying:

"Look, I don't know if that's anecdotal, because listen, I'm ultimately in charge of stadium operations, and we don't make anybody turn shirts inside out."

And later, he said this:

"With respect to t-shirts, unless there was something obscene on t-shirts, then somebody with our security got a little overzealous and I'll make sure that doesn't happen again....What these things commonly are as you guys both know is one story gets told and then somebody else tells the same story and then pretty soon you've got four people recounting the same event as if it was four separate events."
To read more, click here.

For more on the dreadfulness that is the Redskins, managements denials and fan frustration, click here.

But then, the same evening during WUSA-9's 11 pm Tuesday night broadcast, and after a piece about Redskins fan dissatisfaction and the recent ban on signs, the program cut back to anchor Derek McGinty in the studio, who said this:

"Tonight the Redskins have seemingly escalated things again; they've banned media interviews with tailgating fans on FedEx Field property," McGinty said. "They told our sports director Brett Haber that this has always been team policy, but when he pointed out that we and other stations, including their very own broadcast partners, have in fact always talked openly to tailgaters, there was, well let's just say, no further explanation."

HUMP DAY LINKS

Posted by ESPN.com's Heather Dinich.

*The sudden transfers of BC quarterback Justin Tuggle and running back Josh Haden aren't easy to explain, but the timing of their decisions doesn't make things any easier for Frank Spaziani.

*Duke's backs might not have had the most success running the football this year, but they're making up for it in several other important ways.

*Quarterback Thaddeus Lewis has been the primary catalyst, though, on offense.

*Miami coach Randy Shannon doesn't know when linebacker Sean Spence will return from a knee injury, but it won't be this weekend.

*Which tight end leads the ACC in receptions? The answer might surprise you.

*UNC will get some help on Thursday night if tight end Zack Pianalto returns to the lineup after suffering a mild concussion against Florida State.
*The odds are against them, but it's not impossible for Florida State to win the Atlantic Division.

*Virginia Tech coach Bud Foster is not happy. He said the defense is going to have to play better down the stretch.

*Wake Forest could have some key contributors healthy just in time to host Miami.

QUOTE OF THE DAY

"You look at the way they're playing offense, it seems to indicate we're going to have to score some points to win the football game. All indications to the way they've played offense and the points they've scored, you look at our secondary, as decimated as we are and all the young players that we're playing, Christian Ponder is probably salivating down there at the opportunity to play against us.”

-- N.C. State head coach Tom O'Brien.

CHICK-FIL-ACC BOWL LOCKED IN UNTIL 2013

The Chick-fil-A Bowl in Atlanta retained its prominent position in the ACC's bowl selection order through the 2013 season under an agreement announced Wednesday.

After the Bowl Championship Series chooses from the ACC, the Chick-fil-A Bowl will get first choice from among the eligible teams. The deal marks a four-year extension to the ACC's existing agreement with the bowl.

The bowl matches the ACC with an SEC opponent in the Georgia Dome. This year's game will be played at 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 31. The ACC has had a conference tie-in with the bowl since 1992.

The Chick-fil-A Bowl is the ninth-oldest bowl game in the country and hosts the longest-running rivalry series between the ACC and SEC. Now in its 42nd year, the Chick-fil-A Bowl has a string of 12 consecutive sellouts and has earned a reputation as one of the most competitive bowls in the nation. Ten of the last 17 games have been decided by a touchdown or less.

The Chick-fil-A Bowl has disbursed more than $90 million in team payouts over its 41-year history and has increased team payout every year since 1996. The Bowl also leads all other bowl games in charitable and scholarship contributions, giving more than $1.2 million to organizations in need in 2008 alone.

PICTURE OF THE DAY

COMPLETE GAME ONE WINNER. Carlos Ruiz #51 and Cliff Lee #34 of the Philadelphia Phillies celebrate after their 6-1 win against the New York Yankees in Game One of the 2009 MLB World Series at Yankee Stadium on October 28, 2009 in the Bronx borough of New York City.

Lee had 10 strikeouts in his complete game effort.

Eleveon of the last 12 first game winners have gone on to win the World Series.

(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 2

IT GOT LATE EARLY FOR THE BOMBERS. First lady Michelle Obama, Yogi Berra and Dr. Jill Biden walk onto the field during pre-game ceremonies prior to Game 1 of the 2009 World Series between the Philadelphia Phillies and the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium.

(Photo by Rich Pilling/MLB Photos via Getty Images)

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

HOKIES AND JACKETS CALL MOMENTARY TRUCE

Offering at least a momentary truce for an escalating feud between the two schools, Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer said he talked with Georgia Tech boss Paul Johnson in an attempt to set the record straight on Crackbackgate – the flaming furor surrounding charges by the Hokies to the ACC concerning illegal blocks committed by the Yellow Jackets that weren't called in Georgia Tech's 28-23 victory on Oct. 17 in Atlanta.

Beamer said he apologized to Johnson for an erroneous statement he made during his Monday media teleconference that Georgia Tech's final touchdown with three minutes – a 39-yard run by quarterback Josh Nesbitt – was sprung by a low block on Hokies free safety Kam Chancellor #17. Evidently, Chancellor was the victim of an illegal block on a play that ended up as a GT touchdown – jut not that last touchdown.

"It was a similar play, but it wasn't the last touchdown," said Beamer, referring to a 31-yard scamper by Nesbitt to the Hokies' 4-yard line that led to a TD that put the Jackets ahead 14-3 early in the third quarter.

"I don't like giving out wrong information. It shouldn't have happened. And I apologize for that."

Beamer then lauded ACC supervisor of officials Doug Rhoads, who determined Monday after studying 11 video clips from the game submitted to him by the Hokies that the Georgia Tech should have been called for illegal blocks on four plays.

WHAT BEAMER THEN SAID: "They played well and they deserved to win."

WHAT BEAMER MEANT: "Cheaters, bastards, cheating bastards cheaters."

*items in italics may not be true.

WEEK 8: ROAD MAP

Seriously, at this point of the season, who would have thought Boston College would be tied for the lead in the Atlantic with the hot-off-overtime-winners Clemson? In addition, who would have thought that Duke would have more ACC wins (2) than North Carolina and N.C. State combined (ZERO) and that the Blue Devils just might be the best team in the whole state. Then, somehow ranked Miami trails UVA which not too many weeks ago was left completely dead beside the road to Williamsburg. And then there are the Terps and the Noles...what to say?

The world has gone truly crazy!

MISERY HAS COMPANY

Tacee Hamilton of the Washington Post (the newspaper who’s sole journalistic goal it is to ruin the Washington Redskins – according to the Washington Redskins) describes the current situation perfectly in her editorial this morning “Misery Has Company.”

In the meantime, self-expression took another hit at Fed Ex field where signs have been banned. The Post’s Dan Steinberg of D.C. Sports Blog who appears to be leading the WP Special Forces against the Skins (again, according to the Redskins) spent part of Monday night digging up stories about trashed signs and digging through garbage cans and photographing the contraband. Yes, and getting yelled at by Fed Ex security…

The Redskins used to have a banner policy based on common sense, but officials now tell Steinberg that no signs are allowed at all. (Obviously, this clever fellow pictured snuck his into the stadium.)

Clearly, the Redskins aren’t taking the “kinder, gentler” approach according to one woman who when refused entry with her sign that said “Let Ovechkin Call The Plays,” told stadium officials that she wanted to return her homemade sign to her car. Evidently, a Redskin security person stepped on the sign and then ripped it up. This would seem to be a fairly good indicator that the atmosphere in Snyderville is rather poisonous.

To read more, click here.

FLORIDA SUPREME COURT TELLS NCAA TO TAKE A HIKE...OR IS THAT A HUT? OR A HUT, HUT?

It might go better for the suits in Kansas if the case was being heard by the Kansas Supreme Court or the college crazy rule freaks were headquartered in Florida…

The NCAA’s bid to delay a court order to release its records on academic cheating at Florida State was rejected Tuesday by the Florida Supreme Court.

In a terse one-sentence order, the high court denied the NCAA’s emergency motion. However, that decision does not preclude them from considering the merits of the case later.

Attorneys for the NCAA provided the records to a Tallahassee law firm to prepare for release, although they aren’t expected to vary much from documents already made public by Florida State University. The school released copies earlier this month from “screen shots” of documents posted on a secure, read-only Web site, but not the originals.

The Associated Press and other media sought immediate release after an appelate court on Oct. 13 upheld an earlier ruling that the documents are public records. A circuit judge last week ordered the NCAA to release the documents by 2 p.m. Wednesday unless it could win a stay.

The AP sued to get the records on the college athletics governing body’s plan to strip coaches (including Bobby Bowden) and athletes of wins in 10 sports.

Any questions?

WAHOOS FOR HERZLICH

The University of Virginia has joined into the effort to help Boston College linebacker Mark Herzlich battle Ewing’s Sarcoma. The Wahoos will join the growing list of ACC schools, individual and other organizations which have/will join forces with Uplifting Athletes in support of research for the rare form of cancer.

Virginia students will be collecting donations prior to Saturday's game against Duke, and a check will be presented to Herzlich Nov. 14. when the Eagles visit Charlottesville. In addition to the $31,500 the BC players raised through their “Lift For Life” event this summer, they have now received gifts from Dabo Swinney at Clemson, Orange Bowl officials, Florida State, Virginia Tech, N.C. State and Notre Dame coach Charlie Weis (hey, and everybody – including T.A.H.—thinks he’s a pr**k).

The Eagles have raised more than $81,000 for Uplifting Athletes since they started their chapter in July.

Nice, B.C. NICE!

TUESDAY’S LINKS

Posted by ESPN.com's Heather Dinich:

*No, Boston College coach Frank Spaziani said, losing to Notre Dame wasn't "OK." And the Eagles aren't going to catch any sort of break this weekend against Central Michigan (I've got them ranked in my Top 25 this week.)

*North Carolina's chances of going to a bowl game decreased after last Thursday night's loss to FSU, but the Tar Heels are trying to think about the Hokies, not the postseason.

*N.C. State will find out very quickly if the bye week helped its defense, as Christian Ponder is gearing up to pick apart the Pack.

*Virginia's defense will go from facing Georgia Tech's run-based offense to Duke's high-flying passing attack.
Miami linebacker Sean Spence will miss the Wake Forest game with what appears to be a knee injury.

*There's a cause for alarm at NC State and North Carolina, where coaches with strong resumes are still struggling in their third seasons.

*Virginia Tech coach Bud Foster is looking for improvement -- consistently -- from his defense.

*FSU's defense could use a little of that, too, but Mickey Andrews knows what it will take to try to stop Russell Wilson & Co.

*Clemson's unheralded fullback has helped the Tigers move forward.

*The Hokies and the Yellow Jackets have been trading barbs all week over uncalled crackback blocks and holding penalties. It’s Lane Kiffinesque just yet, but it’s getting more heated…

PICTURE OF THE DAY

GEE WIZ. Agent Zero is back and the Washington Wizards are undefeated (1-0).

Here, Gilbert Arenas #0 of the Washington Wizards goes in for the lay up against Shawn Marion #0 and Dirk Nowitzki #41 of the Dallas Mavericks during the season opener at the American Airlines Center on October 27, 2009 in Dallas, Texas.

That’s former Tar Heel Brendan Haywood trailing the play.

(Photo by Glenn James/NBAE via Getty Images)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 2

GETTING READY. Members of the Philadelphia Phillies warm up during World Series workouts on October 27, 2009 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx borough of New York City.

Weather permitting, the Series gets underway tonight.

(Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 3

RAINBOW. A rainbow forms behind St. Andrews stadium as Birmingham play against Sunderland during their English Premier League soccer match in Birmingham, England.

According to various sources, hooligans from both teams argued, and eventually brawled, over which end of the rainbow had the pot of gold.

(AP photo by David Davies)

PICTURE OF THE DAY 4

FALLEN COMRADE. Connecticut's Andre Dixon (2) and Kashif Moore enter Mountaineer Field carrying the helmet and jersey of slain teammate Jasper Howard before an NCAA college football game against West Virginia in Morgantown, W.Va.

Howard was stabbed to death early last Sunday outside a university-sponsored dance.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

...AND THEN THE KINGDOM BEGAN TO CRUMBLE (AGAIN)

The story below appeared as a comment after a post of Dan Steinberg's D.C. Sports Blog about the change in fan behavior and accompanying fashion statements at last night's Redskins' game. It's disturbing on one hand and ridiculous on the other....

At half time, I went down to the concessions area to get a beer and a dog. Of course, the crowd was once again getting restless at the lack of productivity we were seeing on the field. Standing two rows away from me in line, were two middle aged men. One wore a T-shirt that read "Fire Snyder", the other's said "Fire Vinny".

It wasn't long after standing there that the men were surrounded by close to a dozen people wearing yellow security jackets. The conversation between them and the two men escalated quickly as security asked the men to remove their shirts. Of course the men refused, and one stated that he had been a season ticket holder for 26 years. The conversation continued to get heated and before you knew it 6 or 7 armed security officers formed a circle around the layer of yellowed jacketed security officers.

"Sir, you're about to lose those season tickets if you don't take off that shirt" is what he was told.

I don't know what got into me but I had seen enough and had to speak up. This was beyond absurd! I cut across a crowd of people, entering the circle of security.... I said " these guys should be able to wear whatever they want! What the hell is going on? What the hell is this? Communist Russia??? "

I was quickly greeted with a stern warning to not interfere and a shove in the chest that sent me back a few feet. A few minutes later, the men were escorted out of the area and a security woman approached me with an explanation about their actions.

"Look, I know what you're saying, and I can't say that I don't agree with you, but I'm a part-time teacher and this job is my Holiday money"...."upper management told us to come up here and ask these men to remove their shirts and I can't lose my job, so I'm doing it."

I decided then and there that I would NEVER again set foot in Fed Ex Stadium as long as Dan Snyder was the owner. The way I saw people being treated for voicing their opinions on this night embarrassed me as a Redskin fan, a Washingtonian, and as an American. These sort of totalitarian strong arm tactics are downright shameful and I needed to let others know about it.

I hope you share this story with your audience.

-- A deeply embarrassed Redskins fan.

(Editor's note: No, we didn't make this story up. And while items in italics at T.A.H. frequently aren't true, we don't know if this is a fictitious account or not. However, if it is true, it's a sad state of affairs. Having said that, despite any first amendment protestations, we assume that the Redskins ticket contract has a provision that says they can remove anybody they want at any time for any reason they deem necessary, but this shows you how hyper-sensitive (not to mention stupid) Redskins' senior management has become (allegedly). They should be embarrassed.

And we thought the team was bad...)

REDSKINS ANONYMOUS

Join now avoid the rush…

Oh…there’s already a rush.

Sorry, dudes.

EAGLES 27, REDSKINS 17, FANS 0, VINNIE & MR. SNYDER -4,398,912

Dear Mr. Snyder:

Congrats, you once again deftly managed to turn our little inside/outside the beltway family squabble into a national drama of epic reality T.V. proportions. Well, at least EVERYBODY who works for ESPN can agree on something…

Yes, that loss was bad. In fact, it clearly moves to the top of the list of your 100 MOST EMBARRASSING MOMENTS…to see the list (and be prepared, it’s both FUNNY and ACCURATE) click here.

Today, after what was one of the SADDEST performances by an incredibly beleaguered team (not to mention the semi-tragic injury to Chris Cooley that ESPN mentioned EXACTLY once after it happened – and that includes the first 45 minutes of POST game wrap-up), we want to ask three questions.

NUMBER 1: Why does the media want to ruin you, your team and this season? We DON’T get it.

NUMBER 2: Albert Haynesworth is good. He’s an amazing athlete for a guy that weighs in at 350 lbs. Yes, he gets nicked up every game and yes, your own Red Zebra guys at WTEM make fun of him suggesting that after each series he needs “oxygen and BACON,” but, in spite of the jealousy driven criticism so typical of human nature when somebody gets massively OVER compensated for a meaningless job, he’s still pretty DAMN good. Any chance he can play offensive tackle? Maybe the left one, so Steven Heyer can move back to his natural undrafted, un-restricted, walk-on position of right tackle and then maybe Jason Campbell and/or Todd Collins will LIVE to see next season?

(Imagine how cranked off prima-donna Jay Cutler would be if he was getting sacked as much as Campbell is?)

NUMBER 3: Speaking of Cutler. Jason Campbell is simply not good THESE days. He’s digressed to say the least. Last night, he made bad decisions when he stopped holding the ball and made any decisions at all…when, of course, he WASN’T holding the ball on the occasions when he FUMBLED or threw an INTERCEPTION after he actually got the SNAP…but, you get the point.

Now here at T.A.H., we aren’t big advocates of CONSPIRACY theory. Our primary reason is our fundamental disbelief that most human beings are capable of large amounts of the complex thoughts needed to create and implement such intricate plans. In addition, if by some miracle, they can devise such a sophisticated plot, human nature again rears its ugly head and makes it impossible for such folks to keep their devious plans a secret.

However, that disclaimer aside, is it POSSIBLE that Jason Campbell is jobbing you and Vinnie something fierce? Did he go home last night and look in the mirror and giggle:

“That’ll teach you A-HOLES to shop me for pretty-boy Cutler and the unproven rookie 5 interception tossing Sanchez! Take THAT you bastards!”
Oh, and now that you've demoted your head coach in such an EMBARASSING way, is it possible he's in on the scam as well (see big smile in photo below)?

A long shot we know, but we had to ask.

Who knew a bye-week could ever look so good. During the next two weeks, why don’t you and Vinnie hire a new defensive coordinator? OK, our bad…that’s a fourth question, but we do hear Buddy Ryan is down in Kentucky raising race horses and GRANDCHILDREN, and I’m sure he’s board and looking for a quick half-mil for the final 10 games.

Oh, and one more thing since we wont’ be talking for the next two weeks – NOT hiring Greg Williams as head coach, that was brilliant. He really sucks and we don’t know how NEW ORLEANS will make it through the season with such a crappy defense led by such an unqualified and undeserving coach.

Nice, Mr. Snyder, NICE!

Your Loyal Fan,
T.A.H.

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