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Archive for the ‘Gridiron-Football (current)’ Category

Super stuff

As I’ve said before, it’s been many years since I’ve watched the Super Bowl. Kind of goes hand in hand with watching the NFL right? I don’t think I actually watched 1 quarter of NFL this year and don’t have any plans on watching the Super Bowl.

Still, I’ve been thinking, who would I want to win? Not that I really care that much. Apparently it’s Giants versus Patriots. Neither team I have strong feelings for or against. Both have won it recently. I don’t have strong feelings for or against any of the players on the teams, although I’m not sure if I’d be able to name 5 players total, from either team. Have no strong feeligs for or against either coach.

Don’t care for either the New York area or Boston area (that’s where the Pariots are right). That’s just based on guess thought, since I generally dislike metropolitan areas and try avoiding them when possible.

Which brings up a reason why I’d dislike both; thinking about New York/Boston makes me think of the Yankees/Red Sox which isn’t wonderful to think about. No, it has nothing to do with how much the players and/or owners make. It’s the over-hype about the “rivalry”.

So I guess when it comes down to it, I wouldn’t pick a team who I’d “like” to win. Frankly I’m much more interested in the Puppy Bowl. Rats, now I have to pick my favorite for that. I’ll go with Lucie since apparently she’s part collie, although looking at her I don’t see it.

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I’m enjoying looking through Stadium Journey. Looking through there has me thinking about the whole "NCAA Division I" thing. I’m guessing that what people think of when they think of NCAA Division I athletics, they think of those enormous stadiums. I guess I can appreciate them, but to me it just seems out of whack that for college sports that there’s 6 NCAA football stadiums that hold over 100,000 people. NCAA Division I basketball is better, the biggest only has roughly 25,000 people.

Those are the things that come to mind when thinking about Division I sports. Yet, it’s refreshing to me to see that’s not the case for all of Division I basketball and football. Take for instance the Big West conference. With the exception of Hawaii who is in the process of joinging the conference, the largest capacity basketball arena is UC Davis’ and that is only 8,000 capacity. Santa Barbara’s only holds 5,600, yet it looks wonderful to me.

I guess that’s why I still am holding on to enjoying NCAA Division I hockey, it still feels right now. The powerhouses don’t have the over-sized stadiums. If your school wanted to get into the top five largest capacity ice arenas in NCAA Division I hockey, the capacity would just be over 10,000.

NCAA BCS football is what it is, but for me it’s "too much" of a good thing.


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Off and on I read the newspaper (the actual paper, not those e-versions). I barely look at anything other than the sports. Even the sports I barely glance at, since I have no interest in the Wild, Timberwolves, Twins, Vikings, or gophers. What I do like about the Star Tribune is their high-school sports coverage. It’s not usual to have high-school sports make the front page of the sports section. Today there was two full pages covering high-school sports.

(Links are to the brackets)

Boys Futbol State:
Class A: Obviously I want Cloquet-Esko-Carleton to win over St. Paul Academy but other than that I really don’t have any strong feelings for anyone else.
Class AA: I want Mayo over Eastview (greater MN team over city school), doesn’t matter Anoka or Mpls Southwest, North St. Paul over Maple Grove (I’ve developed a dislike of Maple Grove through the years), and Blaine over Eden Praire (I’ve always liked Blaine- for the most part over hockey stuff).

Girls Futbol State:
Class A: Obviously I want Esko-Carleton over Lourdes. I also want South St. Paul over Benilde, St. Peter over Totino-Grace (greater MN team over city school), and Bemidji over Blake (greater MN team over city school)
Class AA: I want Anoka over Lakeville North (I’ve always liked Anoka and don’t like either Lakeville school), Blaine over Wayzata (see Blaine above), no feelings of Woodbury/Burnsville, and no feelings over Eastview/Centennial (well, other than I’d like both to lose).

Boys (gridiron-)football sectionals:
Too many teams/sections/divisions, so I’ll just look at certain ones (mostly sections 1,7,&8)
5A – Section 8: No strong feelings over the East/Moorhead game. Since the Spuds won, I want them to win the section. No real strong feelings of dislike of any of the remaining teams though.
5A – Section 1: No strong feelings over the Owatonna/John-Marshall game. Whoever wins I want them to win over the Lakeville/Lakeville matchup.
4A – Section 7: Would like to see Grand Rapids and Hermantown win, but really having nothing against Bemidji or Detroit Lakes
4A – Section 1: Being a Northfield resident I want them to win but otherwise I don’t have any strong feelings of the other teams.
3A – Section 7: Would like the Cloquet/Proctor winner to win the section, but have no strong feelings of the rest of the teams still playing
1A – Section 7: Sorry to see Barnum lost to Ogilvie. In ’97 when I was in high-school it was a big deal to win over Deer River (in Deer River) for sectionals. Looking at it now Deer River is in Class A, while Esko is in Class 3A. It makes me wonder if Esko moved up, Deer River moved down, or both.
9Man – Section 5: Very interested in this section, due to that the school are generally close to Esko and ones I know fairly well. Would like to see Cromwell and Floodwood win; the section final would be exciting since the two schools are only 19 miles apart.

Volleyball sectionals: Sectionals haven’t even started, so not anything to talk about. Still, happy to see Esko get the #1 seed in 2A – Section 7.

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It’s kind of funny, back then I was sad to see the Winnipeg Jets go to Phoenix. Now the Jets are back. Well sort of, it isn’t the same Jets: the logo and colors are anywhere near as good for starters. Still, I really don’t care; I still have yet to watch even a minute of NHL hockey this year (I don’t think I’ve even seen a highlight – I don’t watch ESPN or even watch the nightly news). Yet, watching their previous team the Manitoba Moose (they moved to Newfoundland) is appealing. Speaking of junior hockey….

I’m fascinated by the junior hockey system in Canada. There’s different levels of the junior system. The top level "Major Junior" is three leagues; the Ontario Hockey League, Western Hockey League, and Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. The champions of each then meet to play for the Memorial Cup, which is pretty darn cool. It’s sort of like USA hockey’s junior nationals for Tier II (Tier I and Tier II don’t really count as "nationals", in my opinion, since Tier I is only the USHL and Tier II is only the NAHL). Which leads me to….

This time of the year I groan, because the words "World Series" is used often. There are Major League Baseball teams in more than one county, so it makes at least a minuscule more sense calling it the "World" Series than if there were only USA teams, but to me it still doesn’t work. It’s sort of like referring to the MLB, NHL, NBA, or NFL champions as World Champions. The leagues can certainly call things what they want, but I say that calling the Dallas Mavericks "World Champions" is just as silly as if the American West Hockey League started calling the their champion "National Champion", despite the fact that the league just started this year, there’s only 6 teams in it, and only 2 states are represented .

Calling your champion a "World Champion" doesn’t make sense if there is only one league involved. Calling Spain "World Champions" makes sense, due to the number of countries involved in the process (although even then it’s not comprehensive since not everyone is a FIFA member, for instance Greenland and Tibet. Calling Internazionale FC "World Champions" after winning the FIFA Club World Cup makes sense, since in order to get there you must first win your country’s league, then win your conference’s league, then win the Club World Cup tourney; never mind that the runner-up, Congolese club TP Mazembe wouldn’t be able to win with regularity against most other clubs, since in order to get there they had to first win the Linafoot, then win the CAF Champions League, to get to the FIFA Club World Cup.

So if the NHL champion wins a tourney that includes teams from other hockey leagues, then calling them World Champions makes sense.

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Something on Facebook last night got me thinking, thinking about myself and being a “fan”. With the possible exception of UMD hockey, I don’t think I can label myself as a “fan” for sports anymore. I may count certain things as interests, but I don’t think “fan” applies. Seems to me that to label myself a “fan” there’s all kind of stuff that goes along with that.

In cases like the NFL, NBA, MLB, even the NHL, I certainly wouldn’t call myself a fan. I’m not even certain how much I’m interested in them. The four leagues combined I’m not sure if I’ve watched more the three games in the last four years; haven’t watched one Superbowl, NBA Final, World Series, or Stanley Cup finals game in that time. I may hear about things going on in any of those league in my car each day, but whatever is being said I’m only mildly interested in, listening to sports talk radio is just something to have on, instead of silence, when I’m not wanting to listen to music. Like how Bostonians (is that the word?) are up in arms regarding the conduct of the Red Sox players. I heard about on the radio, but I really had no interest in any of it, it doesn’t matter to me.

Like I said UMD may be the exception, I may still label myself as a UMD “fan”, but even then I’m not so certain. I get plenty of enjoyment out of it and was very glad UMD won the National Title last season, their NCAA run was amazing. Still, if UMD was to zero wins for the next decade I really don’t think that would matter that much to me, I don’t have any expectations regarding team “performance”. Even with zero wins in a decade, I’d still want to go to games and I can’t see myself being one of the people who would be calling for a coach firing or any such thing.

It’s kind of been a lot of things that are why I’m a lot more mellow regarding sports compared to a decade ago. I’ve come to realize that “relax, it’s just a game” (this one is good too) so it’s not so often that I get worked up about sports anymore. I guess that’s why I’ve come to appreciate NCAA Division II, Division III, and junior hockey; the games are treated as just games, you don’t see the other stuff that you do in D-I or professional leagues.

So I guess what I’m saying is that I am not a “sports fan”, I’m someone who finds sports interesting from time to time.

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Inside College Hockey has "The Great 58" list. UMD is ranked #12.

In USCHO’s poll, UMD is ranked #9, down one spot from #8 last time. They didn’t get any first place votes this time.

LSU’s is really darn cool. Especially cool since it’s the punter who scored. For my take there’s no way it should have been called back. I’m for letting almost everything go and not call "taunting". I’m certainly not for calling back touchdowns on it. The only time I’d say a penalty should be called is if it’s 1) excessive and 2) ongoing, which I admit is subjective. Still don’t take away the touchdown for it, since the touchdown would have happened anyway. Not sure what the correct penalty should be, I’m leaning towards just a 15 yard one – maybe a play ejection on top of it.

Looking through the Hugo Award and the Nebula Award winners:
Books I’ve read: The Windup Girl (2009 Nebula, 2010 Hugo), Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2001 Hugo), Ender’s Game (Nebula&Hugo), The Forever War (Nebula&Hugo), The Dispossessed (Nebula&Hugo), The Left Hand of Darkness (Nebula&Hugo), The Moon is a Harsh Mistress (67 Hugo), The Man in the High Castle (63 Hugo), Stranger in a Strange Land (62 Hugo)
Currently reading: Ringworld (71 Hugo),

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As far as my teams I’m interested in:

  • Carleton College lost 26-7 to Concordia-Moorhead
  • St. Olaf was off
  • UMD won 24-6 over Winona
  • Air Force Academy lost 33-59 to Notre Dame

In the D2football.com poll:

  • #9 Minnesota Duluth (unchanged from last week)
  • #15 St. Cloud State (#18)
  • Dropped Out: Michigan Tech (#21)

In the D3football.com poll:

  • #3 St. Thomas (no change)
  • #9 Bethel (no change)

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