- Year-end high school football thoughts
Monday, December 31st, 2007
I’m a total slacker. Here I am, blogging 2-3 times a week, and then when state championships are up for grabs, I disappear from the face of the Earth.Share
And I really don’t have any great excuse other than I was writing more for the paper those weeks, Christmas shopping and the holiday season had me tied up, plus I had a couple of vacation days thrown in.
As a matter of fact, as I write this, I’m about 15 minutes from leaving work here on Sunday night and I’ll be gone until Jan. 11. My family and I are headed up to Jackson, Wyoming for lots of skiing and some well-deserved rest and relaxation.
But I wanted to write a blog before I left with a couple of ending-the-year football memories.
- No Peet’s, No Starbucks
Thursday, December 27th, 2007
Just wanted to give a quick shout-out to Alfred H. Peet who died this year at 87 years old.Share
Not a lot of people know this, but Peet introduced gourmet coffee to America – coffee out of a can? – when he co-founded Peet’s Coffee and Tea in 1966.
He had two proteges, Gordon Bowker and Jerry Baldwin, who started a little company in the upper northwest you might have heard of — Starbucks.
So enjoy a cup of joe and pour a little out for Peet. (I think they have a Peet’s at the United at Fairway.)
- Michael Jackson remixed
Friday, December 21st, 2007
Any fan of Michael’s Thiller will love these leaked songs. I’m not sure when the actual album will be released, but I’m guessing soon.Share
There’s five tracks to enjoy and some – featuring two of three Black Eyed Peas – are definitely worth a listen. I do have to warn you about the half-assed attempt by Kanye West.
Here’s the Link:
- Supporting our Troops
Friday, December 21st, 2007
Here’s a couple of prime examples of the government supporting our troops overseas:Share
– Required that soldiers discharged early because of battlefield injuries repay their enlistment bonuses.
– Sent the longest serving National Guard unit home one day shy (729 days of combat in Iraq) of the necessary time to get education benefits.
– Denied medical benefits to 22,000 veterans suffering post-traumatic stress by discharging them for enlisting with previous personality disorders.
Just wanted to thank Rolling Stone for bringing this to my attention. Cheers to the government.
- I blame SportsCenter
Wednesday, December 19th, 2007
Sure money has something to do with it, but after the Mitchell report I point the finger at ESPN for their role in popularizing the long ball, the touchdown, the dunk, the highlight.Share
In a roundabout way SportsCenter has had a hand in glorifying what athletes do to a degree of marketing. You don’t want to fall off the highlight wagon, so you do what you must to stay marketable.
You have to believe athletes, especially young ones, believe what gets shown on SportsCenter that night will make or break their season, or have a hand in it anyway.
I’m not an athlete but I can remember as a younger guy what it would be like to get my mug on that evening night cast for the world to see.
- My fav Christmas movie
Friday, December 14th, 2007
I wasn’t able to contribute to the NEXT’s cover story, but hands down the best Christmas film has to be National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.Share
Who doesn’t know a Griswold in their life? The lights engulfing the house, the eggnog served in the Wally World crystal glasses, the crazy pool visions of a make pretend Phoebe Cates.
The movie is the classic of the season. You can have you It’s a Wonderful Life and any version of Christmas Carol, but I’ll take my Chevy Chase with a smile.
You can rewind to any scene from the film and you have to laugh. The beginning with the family truckster (metallic pea might be the color for those that remember) stuck under an 18-wheeler is hilarious.
- Some people are offended way too easily
Tuesday, December 11th, 2007
Wasn’t planning on blogging today, but after what happened while I was at work, I had to feel like getting something off my chest.Share
When a team makes it to a state title game, we run stories on them almost every day of the week. Usually, the first one I write is a profile on the opponent that our area team is playing.
So if you read our paper today, you would have noticed a story on Alto, Seymour’s opponent this Saturday.
- I have created a new word
Tuesday, December 11th, 2007
We will get to the football action in a moment. For now, I want to tell you about my new word.Share
It’s called mog. Half mist, half fog. (fist, obviously, was already taken). The last three weeks, I have covered two games in some cold mog: Graham-Argyle and Seymour-Sunray.
What’s worse is that I have had to make a couple of long drives back to the casa here in Wichita Falls in that stuff.
- Week 4 playoff predictions
Thursday, December 6th, 2007
My life the past four weeks can best be summarized by that Johnny Cash song “I’ve Been Everywhere.”Share
While driving back from Abilene at 2:30 a.m. last Saturday, I was figuring out that I’ve driven about 1,500 miles the past three weeks covering high school football.
In a span of 17 days, I saw nine different games involving six different teams in six different locales.
There are four games on the docket this weekend, and I’ll be at two of them. Let’s break them down:
- 2nd job hunt
Wednesday, December 5th, 2007
Finding a second job is tough. Finding a good primary job is tough to begin with, but getting a second job is probably the worst.Share
Usually taking a second job is decided by some other factors. In my case $ is the culprit. Christmas and other things are breathing down my neck. It’s no big deal, but I’ve looked for a second job, off and on, for a long period of time since I’ve been at the paper.
I usually apply where my friends have jobs already. Something about the foot in the door really helps in getting any way in.
The hunt started last year before my son was born. I figured I’d get something to help with day to day medical expenses.
- fantasy hell
Tuesday, December 4th, 2007
My fantasy football season is about to wrap up, but boy has it been tough. As you might already know I missed the first 10 picks of my draft so my team was basically picked before hand.Share
Injuries another unforeseen circumstances haven’t keep me out of the playoffs, I’m sitting in the No. 3 slot right now, but they have made my life difficult.
First I traded Ronnie Brown for Deuce McCallister. McCallister lost a leg and that hurt. Brown got hurt later, but he was a heck of a football player during his few weeks.
Then Shaun Alexander forgot how to run the ball.
- What a game
Monday, December 3rd, 2007
I have already written a bunch about the Roscoe-Munday game, so we won’t be going into details in this blog.Share
But what I will say (or type) is that I usually see these kind of games only once or twice a year in the playoffs.
- Rider prospects
Saturday, December 1st, 2007
I just learned that with the coaching change that Markelle Martin has decommitted to A&M and has committed to the dark side — Stoops’ Sooners. I’m a Horns fan, so I was sad to see that Texas was fifth on his list.Share
Don’t know why, but he is, according to ESPN, going to be playing in Norman shortly.
An associate of ESPN – Scouts, Inc. – gives the following critic of Martin’s game:
Evaluation: Martin possesses excellent size, range and toughness at his safety position. He will break off the hash over sideline routes and the next play step down and make a physical hit near the line of scrimmage. He is very versatile and well rounded in all facets.
His greatest attribute might be his savvy diagnosing skills. He expertly reads the quarterback and underneath routes. He blends great timing and anticipation skills with good short-area closing speed to consistently separate the ball from the receiver.
He will win most jump balls or use his long wingspan to deflect the pass. Possesses great ball skills and is a threat in the open-field. As a run supporter, he will shut down his front-side alley with force or effectively sift through the lateral trash to make the big hit.
Sound open-field tackler, he rarely lunges or goes for the drag down. Consistently wraps his head around the ball carrier’s waste and drives his hips through. While he is sound in all areas, our only concern with Martin is that some of his productivity stems from his good instincts and positioning, not pure speed and athleticism.
He appears quicker than he is fast. At the next level, with smarter quarterbacks and faster receivers, it will be a more balanced playing field and his true range will be tested.
He might not be able to improve his natural speed, but his overall game can be polished up to help his transition. Needs to stay disciplined in his pedal particularly transitioning in and out.
At times, he stands high, a bit stiff with little fluidity and balance.
Lacks and explosive burst on the ball when attacking underneath. Tends to read and react without good plant and drive technique. Still needs to develop physically and add considerable bulk and strength to consistently play in the box at the next level.
Martin may need a bit of polish, but he is a versatile and rangy athlete who could blossom at the next level.