Tag Archive | "George Mason"

Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 06 December 2011 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: Golf-PGA Tour Franklin Templeton Shootout (Friday 3pm live on Golf Channel Saturday 2:30 Sunday 3pm live on NBC. All golf from Naples, FL); Bowling: PBA World Championship (Sunday 1pm from Las Vegas live on ESPN); Women’s College Basketball: Delaware State @ Maryland (Thursday 7pm Comcast Center), Maryland @ George Mason (Sunday 2pm Patriot Center); High School Basketball: Mt. St. Joseph @ Archbishop Spalding (Sunday 3:30pm); St. Frances @ Mount Carmel (Tuesday 7pm), St. Frances @ McDonogh (Friday 7pm)

10. Corey Taylor (Saturday 7pm Baltimore Soundstage); WMZQ Winter Fest feat. Rodney Adkins, Kellie Pickler, Thompson Square (Saturday 5:30pm Patriot Center); Robert Cray Band (Tuesday 8pm Rams Head on Stage), Emerson Hart (Wednesday 8pm Rams Head on Stage), Duncan Sheik (Sunday 12:30pm Rams Head on Stage); Wiz Khalifa/Snoop Dogg (Wednesday 11pm 9:30 Club), City and Colour (Saturday 8pm 9:30 Club); America (Tuesday 7:30pm Birchmere), Jars of Clay (Thursday 7:30pm Birchmere); Anthony Hamilton/Chrisette Michelle (Thursday 7:30pm Meyerhoff Symphony Hall); The Black Keys “El Camino”, Amy Winehouse “Lioness: Hidden Treasures”, The Roots “Undun”, Chevelle “Hats Off To The Bull” available in stores/on iTunes (Tuesday)

Corey Taylor is from the band Slipknot. Since I don’t know even a single song by the band Slipknot, I suggest you might know him this way…

Emerson Hart is from the band Tonic. I’m such a fan.

If you’re not listening to Anthony Hamilton, you should be listening to Anthony Hamilton…

Chevelle is one of the few bands on the face of the planet that I will spend money on EVERY time they drop a record. Just…solid.

9. “Diner” 30th Anniversary Celebration (Saturday 8pm Shriver Hall Johns Hopkins); Gilbert Gottfried (Thursday 8pm Magooby’s Joke House); Alonzo Bodden (Thursday-Sunday DC Improv); “The Sitter” out in theaters (Friday); “The Hangover Part II” available on DVD/Blu-Ray (Tuesday)

In honor of the Diner anniversary, I think I’m headed to Blue Moon Cafe.

I mean, is there ANY possible better way to celebrate than a trip Fells Point for some Captain Crunch French Toast???

On and since we’re here, The Hangover Part II wasn’t great. But it did spur Mike Tyson’s singing career, and I think the whole world can say thank you for that…

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CAA Showdown Saturday Night on WNST as Towson Hosts George Mason

Posted on 03 December 2011 by WNST Staff

Tigers Open CAA Play Against George Mason Saturday

Towson Men’s Basketball To Face Fifth Team Ranked Or Receiving Votes In National Polls

TOWSON, Md. - The Tigers are set to open Colonial Athletic Association play Saturday evening against rival George Mason. Tip time is set for 7:30 p.m. at the Towson Center and all fans attending the NCAA FCS Football Playoff game at Johnny Unitas® Stadium can attend the Tigers’ men’s basketball game free of charge.

Saturday night’s game can be heard live on AM1570 WNST.net. Coverage begins immediately following the conclusion of the Towson-Lehigh NCAA FCS Playoff game and can be heard here.

Towson (0-6) is coming off an 86-56 setback at UMass on Wednesday evening. Senior Robert Nwankwo posted his third double-double of the season with 19 points and 14 rebounds against the Minutemen.

The Tigers continued to dominate the glass in their last outing, holding a 50-43 rebounding advantage in the loss. Towson has now outrebounded its opponents in all but two games this season.

Including Saturday’s contest, the young Tigers quad will have played five teams ranked or receiving votes in the national polls.

George Mason, which is receiving votes in the latest ESPN/USA Today Coaches Poll, is riding a three-game winning streak and coming off a 61-57 victory over Bucknell. The Patriots are led by Preseason All-CAA First Team honoree Ryan Pearson. The senior ranked in the top-15 of both scoring and rebounding among league players last season, and is the conference’s fifth highest returning scorer. This season Pearson is averaging 20.6 points and 8.6 rebounds per game.

Saturday’s game will be the 38th all-time meeting between Towson and George Mason. The Tigers won six of the first nine meetings between the squads, but have won just two of the last 28. George Mason has never lost to Towson as a member of the Colonial Athletic Association. Their last loss to the Tigers was a 78-71 defeat in Towson in 1993.

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Towson To Host Inaugural Breast Cancer Awareness Night Saturday

Posted on 29 November 2011 by WNST Staff

TOWSON, Md. – The Towson men’s basketball program is set to host its inaugural Breast Cancer Awareness Night Saturday, Dec. 3 as the Tigers take on Colonial Athletic Association rival George Mason at the Towson Center. Tip time for the game has been changed from 7 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. due to the NCAA football playoff games between Towson and Lehigh that is slated to kickoff at 3:30 p.m.

Fans attending the basketball game will receive $3 off their ticket price if they wear anything pink. The men’s basketball team will participate by wearing pink laces, wristbands and warm up shirts.

The Zeta sorority will be selling shirts and accepting donations and pink ribbons will be distributed to all fans.

Pink Paws will also be in attendance, led by senior women’s basketball player Meredith Kennedy.

Tickets can be ordered today by calling the athletics ticket office at: 1-855-TU-Tiger.

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 29 November 2011 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: Auto Racing-NASCAR Awards Show (Friday 9pm from Las Vegas live on SPEED); Golf: PGA Tour Qualifying School (Saturday & Sunday 4pm, Monday 3:30pm from La Quinta, CA live on Golf Channel), PGA Tour Chevron World Challenge (Thursday & Friday 1pm live on Golf Channel Saturday & Sunday 12pm live on NBC. All golf from Thousand Oaks, CA); Women’s College Basketball: Big Ten/ACC Challenge-Michigan @ Maryland (Wednesday 7pm Comcast Center), Maryland @ American (Sunday 1pm Bender Arena); Tennis: ATP Tour Davis Cup Final (Friday 8am Saturday 10am Sunday 7am from Seville, Spain live on Tennis Channel)

10. Andrea Bocelli (Friday 8pm Verizon Center); Erykah Badu (Friday 7pm Rams Head Live); Dashboard Confessional (Saturday 7pm Recher Theatre); All Mighty Senators (Saturday 7pm 8×10 Club); Aaron Neville (Monday 8pm Rams Head On Stage); Robin Thicke (Wednesday 7pm 9:30 Club); String Cheese Incident (Wednesday 8pm Lyric Opera House), Ryan Adams (Sunday 7:30pm Lyric Opera House); J. Roddy Walston & The Business (Friday 9pm Ottobar); Mac Miller (Thursday 7pm Fillmore Silver Spring); Ra Ra Riot (Friday 7pm Ritchie Coliseum College Park); Tori Amos (Monday 8pm D.A.R. Constitution Hall); Adele Live at Royal Albert Hall available on CD/DVD/Blu-Ray/iTunes (Tuesday)

I really shouldn’t like Robin Thicke all that much. I just can’t help myself…

Dude, Ryan Adams has made so many great tunes but are any of them greater than this?

I feel like I should be a bigger J Roddy Walston fan than I am…http://wnst.net/wordpress/wp-admin/post.php?post=185164&action=edit

I don’t know if Adele sounds BETTER at Royal Albert Hall…but I know this much…no CHANCE she doesn’t sound amazing…

9. Washington Monument Lighting (Thursday 7pm from Mt. Vernon Place live on WBAL11), Mayor’s Christmas Parade (Sunday 2pm Hampden/Medfield); Gary Valentine (Thursday-Saturday Baltimore Comedy Factory); Steve-O (Thursday-Sunday DC Improv); Jim Norton (Thursday-Saturday Magooby’s Joke House)

Is there any chance that when Stephanie Rawlings-Blake flips on the lights at the monument the scene looks anything like this?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ar-__ub0rc

And since I’ve already invoked Christmas Vacation, I think it’s only appropriate that we do this…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mk74WprmZxY

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Towson Hoops Picked to Finish 12th in CAA

Posted on 18 October 2011 by WNST Staff

ARLINGTON, Va. – The Colonial Athletic Association held its annual men’s and women’s basketball media day on Tuesday at Champps-Pentagon Row in Arlington, Va. The gathering of the league’s head coaches and media members also saw the release of the CAA Preseason Polls.

Both Coach Pat Skerry of the men’s basketball team and Coach Joe Mathews of the women’s basketball team conducted numerous interviews with the media in attendance.

On the men’s side, Drexel was picked to finish first in the voting by the league’s coaches. George Mason and Virginia Commonwealth rounded out the top three. The Tigers were picked to finish 12th in the league.

The women’s side saw Delaware, who returns all five starters picked to finish first. VCU and James Madison rounded out the top three selections. The Tigers, who return three starters from a year ago, were picked to finish 11th.

The Tiger men will open the 2011-12 season on Friday, Nov. 11 at Kansas while the Tiger women’s team opens its season on Saturday, Nov. 12 at Western Kentucky.

Note: Delaware G Devon Saddler (Aberdeen) was named to the preseason All-CAA second team.

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Trip to UMBC Highlights Maryland Women’s Basketball Schedule

Posted on 14 September 2011 by WNST Staff

COLLEGE PARK, Md. – Home-and-home match ups with Duke, North Carolina, Miami, Georgia Tech and Virginia highlight the 2011-12 Maryland women’s basketball schedule, released Tuesday. All five of the aforementioned teams were selected to compete in the postseason in 2011.

The Terrapins will play at least 17 games against opponents that competed in either the NCAA or WNIT postseason tournaments in 2011. Ten of those games will be played in College Park.

Eight of the Terps’ games will be televised, including three on the ESPN family of networks. The other five will be shown on RSN, which consists of several regional cable syndicated networks throughout the ACC footprint, including Comcast SportsNet, Fox Sports Net South, and New England Sports Network, reaches approximately 24 million households.

Highlighting the early non-conference schedule will be a matchup with Georgetown, who ended the 2010-11 season ranked 14th, on Nov. 13 at 2 p.m. at Comcast Center.

Six local opponents are on the Terps’ non-conference slate. Maryland will welcome Loyola, Georgetown and Towson to Comcast Center, and will travel to UMBC, American and George Mason.

In the Big Ten/ACC Challenge, Maryland will play host to 2011 postseason team Michigan for a 7 p.m. game on Nov. 30. This will mark the first meeting between the two teams and both are undefeated in the first four years of the Challenge.

The Terps, who went 24-8 and finished fourth in the ACC last year, will play their first five league games against 2011 postseason participants, including three on the road. They will play single-games at home vs. Wake Forest, Virginia Tech and Boston College, and single road games at Clemson, Florida State and North Carolina State.

The Terrapins open league play at Florida State on Jan. 2 with a 7 p.m. game, then return home for an 8:30 p.m. televised game vs. Georgia Tech on Jan. 6. Two days later, the Terrapins hit the road against to play at North Carolina at 1 p.m. Continuing its road trip, Maryland will take on Miami, who finished second in the league last year, in Coral Gables on Jan. 12 at 7 p.m.

Maryland’s last three home games include a Feb. 12 matchup with Miami, which will be shown live on ESPN2 at 2:30 p.m. A week later, the Terrapins will play host to Duke for a 3 p.m. game on Feb. 19, which will also be shown on ESPN2. The Terps close out their home slate with a Feb. 24 game vs. North Carolina at 8:30 p.m. shown on RSN.

The 2011 ACC Tournament will be held March 1-4 at the Greensboro Coliseum. The ACC Semifinals will be shown on ESPNU and the ACC Championship game will be shown on ESPN2.

Maryland will play host to the 2012 NCAA First and Second Rounds March 17 and 19 at Comcast Center.

The Terps will make their first appearance of the season at Maryland Madness on Oct. 14 at Comcast Center. They will play host to Messiah College for an exhibition on Nov. 1 and Holy Family for an exhibition on Nov. 6. Both exhibition games will be at 7 p.m.

2011-12 Maryland Women’s Basketball Schedule

Day Date  Opponent    Location  Time

Tues. Nov. 1  Messiah College (Exhib.)   COLLEGE PARK, Md. 7 p.m.

Sun. Nov. 6  Holy Family (Exhib.)   COLLEGE PARK, Md. 7 p.m.

Fri. Nov. 11  LOYOLA (Md.)    COLLEGE PARK, Md. 7 p.m.

Sun. Nov. 13  GEORGETOWN    COLLEGE PARK, Md. 2 p.m.

Wed. Nov. 16  TOWSON    COLLEGE PARK, Md. 7 p.m.

Sat. Nov. 19  UMBC     Baltimore, Md.  7 p.m.

Tues. Nov. 22  SAINT JOSEPH’S    COLLEGE PARK, Md. 7 p.m.

Florida International Thanksgiving Classic

Fri. Nov. 25   at Florida International   Miami, Fla.  6 p.m.

Sat. Nov. 26  Cal State Bakersfield   Miami, Fla.  2 p.m.

Big Ten/ACC Challenge

Wed. Nov. 30  MICHIGAN    COLLEGE PARK, Md. 7 p.m.

Sun. Dec. 4  at American    Washington, D.C.  1 p.m.

Thurs. Dec. 8  DELAWARE STATE   COLLEGE PARK, Md. 7 p.m.

Sun. Dec. 11  at George Mason    Fairfax, Va.  2 p.m.

Terrapin Classic

Wed. Dec. 28  LAFAYETTE    COLLEGE PARK, Md. Noon

Thurs. Dec. 29  DELAWARE/ECU    COLLEGE PARK, Md. 7 p.m.

Mon. Jan. 2  at Florida State*    Tallahassee, Fla.   7 p.m.

Fri. Jan. 6  GEORGIA TECH* (RSN)   COLLEGE PARK, Md.       8:30 p.m.

Sun. Jan. 8  at North Carolina* (RSN)   Chapel Hill, N.C.  1 p.m.

Thurs. Jan. 12  at Miami*     Coral Gables, Fla.  7 p.m.

Mon. Jan. 16  VIRGINIA* (RSN)    COLLEGE PARK, Md.       8:30 p.m.

Thurs. Jan. 19  WAKE FOREST*    COLLEGE PARK, Md. 7 p.m.

Sun. Jan. 22  at Duke* (ESPNU)    Durham, N.C.  3:30 p.m.

Thurs. Jan. 26  VIRGINIA TECH*    COLLEGE PARK, Md. 7 p.m.

Thurs. Feb. 2  BOSTON COLLEGE*    COLLEGE PARK, Md. 7 p.m.

Mon. Feb. 6  at Georgia Tech* (RSN)   Atlanta, Ga.  7 p.m.

Thurs.  Feb. 9  at Clemson*    Clemson, S.C.  7 p.m.

Sun.  Feb. 12  MIAMI* (ESPN2)    COLLEGE PARK, Md.       2:30 p.m.

Thurs. Feb. 16  at Virginia*     Charlottesville, Va.  7 p.m.

Sun. Feb. 19  DUKE* (ESPN2)    COLLEGE PARK, Md. 3 p.m.

Fri. Feb. 24  NORTH CAROLINA* (RSN)   COLLEGE PARK, Md.      8:30 p.m.

Sun. Feb. 26  at North Carolina State*   Raleigh, N.C.  2 p.m.

*-denotes ACC game | Home games in BOLD CAPS

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Trips to Kansas, Michigan and Visit from Oregon State Highlight Towson Hoops Schedule

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Trips to Kansas, Michigan and Visit from Oregon State Highlight Towson Hoops Schedule

Posted on 13 September 2011 by WNST Staff

TOWSON RELEASES 2011-12 MEN’S BASKETBALL SCHEDULE

Tigers to Face Six NCAA Tournament Teams

TOWSON, Md. – Contests against six teams that reached the 2011 NCAA Tournament highlight the 2011-12 Towson University men’s basketball schedule, it has been announced by Pat Skerry, the Tigers’ first-year coach.

The Tigers will open the 2011-12 season by participating in the EA Sports Maui Invitational. After opening the season at the University of Kansas on Nov. 11, the Tigers will travel to the University of Michigan for a Nov. 14 game against the Wolverines. The Jayhawks advanced to the NCAA Tournament’s Southwest Region final last year while Michigan reached the NCAA Tournament third round.

Towson will continue play at the EA Sports Maui Invitational by facing Belmont, a team that played in the NCAA Tournament second round last year, on Nov. 19. The Tigers will play either UNC Greensboro or Middle Tennessee State on Nov. 20.

The Tigers open their home schedule against Oregon State on Nov. 26. That is the start of a stretch of four of five home games. After a visit to the University of Massachusetts on Nov. 30, the Tigers open their Colonial Athletic Association schedule at home against George Mason on Dec. 3, the first of two meetings against the Patriots. The two teams will also face each other at the Patriot Center on Jan. 21.

The Tigers resume their non-conference schedule by hosting La Salle on Dec. 7 and UMBC on Dec. 10 before visiting Coppin State on Dec. 14. They will finish the month of December with games against Manhattan College (Dec. 20), the University of Vermont (Dec. 23) and the University of Virginia (Dec. 30).

“As you can see, we are playing a national schedule against several of the nation’s top programs,” Skerry said. “The players want to play against the best competition much like they have during their entire basketball careers. We look forward to using these games and experiences to prepare us for a very tough CAA.”

The Tigers resume their CAA schedule on Jan. 2 by hosting Northeastern at the Towson Center in the first of two meetings between the two teams. Towson will also play Delaware, Drexel, James Madison, CAA champion Old Dominion and Final Four participant Virginia Commonwealth in a home-and-home series during the 2011-12 season while facing the other four CAA teams once.

In addition, the Tigers will play in an ESPN BracketBusters game on the weekend of Feb. 17-19 against an opponent to be determined.

The CAA Championship will be played Mar. 2-5 at the Richmond Coliseum with the CAA winner receiving an automatic berth into the NCAA Tournament.

Note: Schedule follows on next page

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2011-12 Towson University Men’s Basketball Schedule

November
11 at Kansas ^ Lawrence, Kan. 7 p.m.
14 at Michigan ^ Ann Arbor, Mich. TBA
19 vs. Belmont ^ Murfreesboro, Tenn. TBA
20 vs. UNC Greensboro/Middle Tenn. St. Murfreesboro, Tenn. TBA
26 OREGON STATE Towson Center TBA
30 at Massachusetts Amherst, Mass. TBA

December
3 GEORGE MASON * Towson Center TBA
7 LA SALLE  Towson Center 7 p.m.
10 UMBC Towson Center 7 p.m.

14 at Coppin State Baltimore, Md. 7:30 p.m.
20 MANHATTAN COLLEGE Towson Center 7 p.m.
23 VERMONT Towson Center 7 p.m.
30 at Virginia Charlottesville, Va. 7 p.m.

January
2 NORTHEASTERN * Towson Center TBA
4 at Drexel * Philadelphia, Pa. TBA
7 at Old Dominion * Norfolk, Va. TBA
11 WILLIAM & MARY * Towson Center TBA
14 at Georgia State * Atlanta, Ga. TBA
18 OLD DOMINION * Towson Center TBA
21 at George Mason * Fairfax, Va. TBA
23 at Delaware * Newark, Del. TBA
25 VIRGINIA COMMONWEALTH * Towson Center TBA
28 UNC WILMINGTON * Towson Center TBA

February
1 at Hofstra * Hempstead, N.Y. TBA
4 DREXEL * Towson Center TBA
8 at Virginia Commonwealth * Richmond, Va. TBA
11 JAMES MADISON * Towson Center TBA
17-19 at ESPN BracketBusters vs. TBA TBA TBA
22 DELAWARE * Towson Center TBA
25 at James Madison * Harrisonburg, Va. TBA

March
2-5 at CAA Tournament Richmond, Va. TBA

Home games listed in BOLD
* – Colonial Athletic Association game
^ – EA Sports Maui Invitational

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VCU Run – What’s Good in Sports

Posted on 29 March 2011 by Tom Federline

The Virginia Commonwealth University Rams mens basketball team is in the Final Four of the NCAA Championship Tournament. Yes, an “at-large-mid-major-play-in-game” team, is in Houston, Texas going for all the gusto. Who had them going?  Heck, who had them beating Georgetown? Fixed? Possibly. You know one of my many suspicions, “if there’s money involved – the potential for a Fix can exist.” But let’s stay on the innocent side of this one, for sanity sake. The #11 VCU Rams (Colonial Athletic Association) vs. #8 Butler Bulldogs (Horizon League) Saturday, April 2nd, 6:10pm on CBS, to play in the semi-final round of the NCAA Tournament. The “play-in-game” for the Championship. If you have time available, watch it.

VCU,  located right smack dab in the center of Richmond, VA. Just on the west side of I-95. I believe you can even see some of the campus buildings as you drive by doing 75 mph+. That’s if you are crazy enough to take your eyes off the road, while performing  NASCAR maneuvers navigating the Richmond I-95 corridor. VCU is that close. Not as close as George Mason (2006 Final Four entry from Fairfax, VA), but close enough for a road trip. Both teams, are members of the CAA conference. VCU finished 4th in that conference this year behind GMU. They lost to Old Dominion in the CAA Championship game, March 7th. A questionable invite to “The Dance”. VCU has been on a roll ever since. Only one game was even close, an overtime game against  Florida State (ACC). Team ball, young coach, surging together, believing in each other. That’s what good teams are made of.

Take the big boys down VCU: USC- Pac 10 – gone, GTown- Big East – gone, Purdue – Big Ten – gone, FSU – ACC- Gone, Kansas – Big 12 – gone. Nice run. Now you have Butler from the Horizon Conference. The what from where? Where is Butler located?Come on, you can remember from last year. These boys played the Dukies for all the gusto. Butler is from Indianapolis, so you can’t root for them. This year the “Cinderella” is VCU. I had San Diego State beating Kansas. I jumped on the Steve Fisher bandwagon after I saw that ESPN 30 for 30 special on the Michigan Fab Five (Fedman blog March 14th). I love an underdog/dark horse. It shakes up the apple cart. Vegas numbers go whacko. It revives my faith that true athleticism and fair play does exist, with minimal outside influence. Ok, now I’m pushing it.

Back to innocence. How about this coach for VCU? 33 years old and looks like he should be on the court playing with these kids. What is his name – Shaka (is) Smart? Shocka (the basketball world) Smart? How about – “Tell Me Something Good” – (Rufus and Chaka Khan) Smart? Whatever it is or whatever you want to call him – he be workin’ it. A young man after my own heart – utilizes the KISS principle, keeps the boys focused, appears to practice what he preaches. I heard an interview with him the other night about what he was using to motivate. He referenced a book I had purchased for myself 10+ years back, The Four Agreements. Not a bad read, some overkill, but basically one of those “I need a reminder” type books. It’s only about 140 pages, a good ”off season” beach book. So the young lad is a thinker and a leader. Another ingredient of what good teams are made of.

You go VCU. Thank you for making the NCAA Tournament worth watching. Thank you for restoring what can be good in todays sports.

D.I.Y.

Fedman

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Wednesday 3-Pointer: Buck Growing on O’s Like a Nice Goatee, NCAA Brackets Busted Already & Give VCU a Re-Do

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Wednesday 3-Pointer: Buck Growing on O’s Like a Nice Goatee, NCAA Brackets Busted Already & Give VCU a Re-Do

Posted on 09 March 2011 by Thyrl Nelson

Wednesday 3-Pointer

 

 #1 – Buck’s Orioles Growing on Me Like a Well Kept Beard

 

Regardless of the logistics and profitability (or lack thereof) in televising spring training baseball games, it would seem that a team that owns a network should be able to do such things, and while I’m aware that it’s not a practice carried on throughout Major League Baseball, I’m also aware that the league only began televising their own draft last year, so just because they aren’t doing it now doesn’t mean that there is no market for it or profit/benefit in it. At this time of year as our thoughts turn to warm weather and baseball, it would be nice to turn our TVs there too.

 

I’m not sure whether the decision not to televise comes down to it actually costing the team or just not providing enough profit to justify it. In either case, I’d have to imagine that if televising spring training (home) games served no other purpose they’d at least do a better job at generating fan interest than those silly in-house commercials that they produce and run all season long trying to convince folks who are already watching the games to watch games. To that end I’d presume they could justify it as pseudo-advertising if nothing else.

 

Needless to say I was happy to get a chance to lay eyes on the team first hand in their game against the Yankees on Monday, and although I love a pitchers’ duel as much as any baseball purist, no runs scored on either side was a bit disappointing. The game itself served as a reminder, perhaps (counter) to my initial point that in spring training there are too many individual agendas at play (pitchers working specific pitches, batters not subscribing to particular game situations) to make for interesting or at least competitive games.

 

The highlight of the night for me though (narrowly beating out Reynolds laser the other way) was the in game interview with Buck Showalter. At one point, when asked to opine on the notable upgrades to Ed Smith Stadium he said something to the effect of “another excuse eliminated”. For long suffering Orioles fans, this is music to our ears.

 

What it says to me is that Buck is aware that the team has a perception problem that will linger for as long as they continue to buy into it themselves. It was a nice insight (a nugget if you will) into Showalter’s approach in trying to change the clubhouse culture. Reports by the Baltimore Sun indicating that Showalter had gotten the club to loosen its stance on the facial hair policy is another excuse eliminated I think. While it seems like a small thing, if the team has a perception problem and knows it, then there’s no reason to add to their challenges with frivolous policies. It may seem like a small thing, but much like the hair on the chin’s of Derrek Lee and Vlad Guerrero, Showalter is growing on me, and lots of other fans too I’d imagine.

 

 

 

#2 – Brackets Already Busted

 

If you haven’t yet fully come to assess the potential effects of the expansion of the NCAA Tournament field to 68 teams, you’d better get a hold of it by Sunday night, as it’s going to impact your bracket pools this time in ways that the addition of the 65th team never did.

 

The first four play-in games to be played on Tuesday and Wednesday of next week in Dayton Ohio will not be made up of the worst 8 teams in the field as I think most people still suspect. Instead the 4 lowest division winners (seeds 65-68) will be pitted against each other in Dayton with the winners of those games advancing to the 16-line in the tourney and being destroyed by #1 seeds. As with the 64 vs. 65 game in years past, this can be seen as a foregone conclusion and may not even merit picking, a policy that most pools have seemingly adopted.

 

The other two games in Dayton though will feature the 34th – 37th at large teams and matching them up against each other. The winners of those games will be inserted into the field presumably on the 11th or 12th lines depending on actual seeding. That means match-ups on the 6 vs. 11 and the infamous 5 vs. 12 lines in the first round have just gotten a lot tougher to pick.

 

Will pools adopt a system where the play in winners are considered wildcards and can be advanced as such or will all of your pools have to be in before Tuesday night? How much harder does it become to pick a 12-seed to upset a 5 if you have a 50/50 shot at determining who that 12-seed will even be? You can bet that folks you know who always pick at least one 12-seed in the first round will now be compelled to do that in the regions where play-ins determine the 16-seeds and the 12-seeds are predetermined.

 

I think I’m most interested to see if the NCAA will play the 4 lowest overall seeds all on Tuesday and the other (more interesting) games on Wednesday. Since a 16-seed has still yet to beat a #1, that would at least give everyone an extra day to get those brackets in. While the NCAA can’t and won’t publicly condone gambling, there’s no doubt that they owe a lot of the popularity of their event to the popularity of the pools that accompany it. It will be interesting to see if they play the lower seeds first and at least (in some way) acknowledge what they’re doing to bracket players everywhere who I am afraid aren’t yet ready for this.

 

 

 

#3 – Do Over for VCU

 

I got to talk to Tim Gardner from USA Today on Monday’s show (available in the Buy-A-Toyota.com Audio Vault) ahead of the CAA championship and the prospects therein, he indicated to me that both George Mason and Old Dominion had done enough for the committee regardless of the outcome of the title game to get themselves into the field of 68. He went on to say that if VCU won the game the CAA would likely see its first ever 3-team bid into the tourney.

 

VCU didn’t win, but they made a valiant effort. In the end the result was 70-65 Old Dominion with the Monarchs sewing up the CAA’s automatic bid and likely leaving VCU home for the dance. The end however isn’t what everyone seems to be talking about. The game started with a peculiar VCU turnover, they quickly got the ball back and buried a three-pointer. After forcing another quick turnover VCU guard Ed Nixon slipped on his way in for a lay-up, leading to a turnover and a three-pointer at the other end. Play was then stopped due to the excessive slipping going on under VCU’s basket, and a barrage of towel wielding employees went about wiping what was described by the game’s announcers as a film off of the floor at that end. The announcers blamed it on the fog machine used for pre-game intros and blamed the conference for not testing it as they were on a neutral floor for a conference title game.

 

It turns out that it wasn’t the fog machine. Yahoo sports reported that the film on the floor was actually baby powder, left there from Old Dominion’s mascot “Big Blue’s” attempt at a pre-game LeBron James impersonation. Although the score was 3-3 at the time of the stoppage, and could have played out in a number of conceivable ways from there out, the two turnovers and resultant 3-pointer the other way possibly as a direct result of the floor issues could have cost the Rams as much as 9 points (lost and given up) to that stage of the game…on account of the ODU mascot.

 

With 3 extra berths available in the field this year, VCU deserves one; it’s the right thing to do. Who are they going to rob one from the 5th place SEC, ACC or PAC-10 finisher? Put them in the field in Dayton with a shot at the 12 spot if they advance. That would make me feel a little better about the mess they’re already projecting to make of the brackets this season. And VCU’s resume isn’t terrible; they beat UCLA early and an underrated Wofford team in December. They’re 2-1 against a strong George Mason squad and 1-2 after Monday’s loss against Old Dominion. Give them a redo, and get the mascots and cheerleaders away from the court, before they really cost someone a game.

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 24 January 2011 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: Boxing-Devon Alexander vs. Timothy Bradley (Saturday 10pm from Pontiac, MI live on HBO), Friday Night Fights: Cristobal Arreola vs. Joey Abell (Friday 10pm from Temecula, CA live on ESPN2); Women’s College Basketball: Wake Forest @ Maryland (Friday 8:30pm from Comcast Center live on Comcast SportsNet), Longwood @ Maryland (Sunday 2pm Comcast Center); Soccer: MISL-Chicago Riot @ Baltimore Blast (Friday 7:35pm 1st Mariner Arena); High School Basketball: Perry Hall @ Woodlawn (Wednesday 6:30pm), Catonsville @ Perry Hall (Friday 7pm), Glen Burnie @ Broadneck (Wednesday 5pm); NBA: Denver Nuggets @ Washington Wizards (Tuesday 7pm from Verizon Center live on Comcast SportsNet), Washington Wizards @ Oklahoma City Thunder (Friday 8pm from Oklahoma City live on Comcast SportsNet), Washington Wizards @ Memphis Grizzlies (Saturday 8pm from Memphis live on Comcast SportsNet), Washington Wizards @ Dallas Mavericks (Monday 8:30pm from Dallas live on Comcast SportsNet)

10. Liz Phair (Tuesday 7pm Rams Head Live), Anberlin (Wednesday 7pm Rams Head Live), Umphrey’s McGee (Sunday 7pm Rams Head Live); Less Than Jake (Thursday 7:30pm Sonar); Mike Doughty (Thursday 8pm Rams Head On Stage), Bacon Brothers (Friday & Saturday 6:30pm & 9:30pm Rams Head On Stage); Adema (Tuesday 6:15pm Jaxx); Donnell Rawlings (Thursday-Sunday DC Improv); Kathleen Madigan (Thursday 7:30pm Birchmere); 2011 Grammy Nominees CD available in stores/on iTunes (Tuesday); “The Mechanic” released in theaters (Friday); “Secretariat” available on DVD/Blu-Ray (Tuesday)

A word to describe Anberlin? “Underrated”…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bjE_2fFMnG0[/youtube]

I haven’t always been a big fan of Less Than Jake, but their David Cassidy cover was pretty cool…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rTteO9TxKN4[/youtube]

I LOVED Soul Coughing. Even solo, I STILL love Mike Doughty…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qktIKYZJYs8[/youtube]

There are plenty of songs on the Grammy Nominees CD. Only one of them is worth of being considered the best of the year. Language NSFW…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pc0mxOXbWIU[/youtube]

9. Monster Jam (Friday 7:30pm, Saturday 2pm & 7:30pm Verizon Center)

My friend Brady Gardiner from MLB Network Radio commented on Facebook that if you attend the 2:00 edition of Monster Jam Saturday in DC, you’ll have time to make it to the 8:00 performance of “Cymbeline” at the Shakespeare Theatre Company next door.

Look…the only thing I know about Monster Jam is that my cousins’ kids really dig Grave Digger. I don’t blame them. It’s pretty cool…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1LIifYLOcz0[/youtube]

8. Maryland State Police Polar Bear Plunge (Saturday all day Sandy Point State Park), Baltimore Boat Show (Thursday-Sunday Baltimore Convention Center)

A couple of things I know about the Polar Bear Plunge.

1-Joe Flacco will be there. So if you’re a Ravens fan…or just a fan of eyebrows…you’re in luck.

2-DJ Pauly D will be there. You know, the guy from Jersey Shore. So you know what time it is…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CjVkplphsBU[/youtube]

And 3-I don’t care how cold it is. There will be girls in bikinis. Do I really need to share a picture for you to understand why that’s a good thing?

7. Mixed Martial Arts: Strikeforce-Nick Diaz vs. Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos (Saturday 10pm from San Jose live on Showtime)

Also on Saturday night’s Strikeforce card is Herschel Walker, facing some dude named Scott Carson. If there was more for me to share here, I’d share it.

In other MMA news, Allison Diehl is a Hooters girl who was recently named a UFC ring card girl. That’s MUCH more interesting…

ufcgirl

6. NHL: Washington Capitals @ Atlanta Thrashers (Wednesday 7pm from Atlanta live on Comcast SportsNet); Honda NHL SuperSkills (Saturday 7pm from Raleigh, NC live on VERSUS), NHL All-Star Game (Sunday 4pm from Raleigh live on VERSUS)

While the Skills competition tends to be better than the ASG on the ice, I doubt I’ll be watching the Skills competition either.

That is unless they’ve added “Knucklepuck” to hockey’s Saturday night event. If they’ve added Knucklepuck, I’m IN…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oqq-glymrRs[/youtube]

5. NFL: Pro Bowl (Sunday 7pm from Honolulu live on FOX)

I know you’re probably thinking to yourself, “The Pro Bowl stinks.”

Well…you’re right. The Pro Bowl is terrible, like most all other All-Star Games.

But at the same time, it’s the only football game on TV Sunday. I mean, what the hell else are you going to watch? Disney on Ice?

And who knows, maybe the Backstreet Boys will show up again! Nothing says “Pro Bowl is awesome” quite like a BSB halftime show…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qDWol7C7jlQ[/youtube]

4. Pro Wrestling: WWE Royal Rumble (Sunday 8pm from Boston live on Pay-Per-View)

Holy crap there are 40 guys in the Rumble this year? In no ways did I think this event could be cooler than it was in my childhood, but it actually sounds like it might be.

I know this much as a fact. There could have been 30, 40, or 200 men in the Royal Rumble in 1995. Shawn Michaels was winning the damn thing…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h4tZz8qUPDA[/youtube]

(Edit from GMC: The happiest 11 year old on the face of the planet resided in Kingville, MD that night.)

3. College Football: Senior Bowl (Saturday 4pm from Mobile, AL live on NFL Network)

Yep, I’ll be watching. Nope, I won’t be wearing pants.

Why would you even ask???

A couple names to follow during the Senior Bowl include Allen Bailey & Leonard Hankerson from Miami, as well as Mark Herzlich from Boston College.

This is always a good news/bad news day for the city of Mobile. The good news is that they get to host a great event. The bad news is that they know there won’t be anything else happening there all year that anyone will want to attend.

Well…other than this….

pecan

You see…that’s an event I’d actually think about attending…

2. College Basketball: Maryland @ Virginia (Thursday 7pm from Charlottesville, VA live on Comcast SportsNet), Maryland @ Georgia Tech (Sunday 7:45pm from Atlanta live on Comcast SportsNet); Norfolk State @ Morgan State (Saturday 1pm from Hill Field House live on ESPNU), North Carolina A&T @ Morgan State (Monday 7:30pm Hill Field House); North Carolina A&T @ Coppin State (Saturday 4pm Coppin State Physical Education Complex), Norfolk State @ Coppin State (Monday 7:30pm Coppin State Physical Education Complex); Albany @ UMBC (Wednesday 7pm RAC Arena); Towson @ George Mason (Wednesday 7pm Patriot Center); Siena @ Loyola (Friday 7pm Reitz Arena), Iona @ Loyola (Sunday 12pm Reitz Arena)

Have I mentioned recently how much I freaking DESPISE those idiot Wahoos at UVa…

uva

Ugh…just look at those clowns. They even ruin what might be otherwise attractive women.

Your ties stink. Auld Lang Syne is not a fight song. Dave Matthews Band should be ashamed to call you home.

That it all.

1. Tennis: Australian Open (Tuesday 12am & 7pm, Wednesday 9:30pm, Friday 3:30am, Saturday-Women’s Final-3am, Sunday-Men’s Final-3am live on ESPN2; Wednesday 7pm, Friday-Women’s Doubles Final-11pm, Sunday-Men’s Doubles Final-5:30am, Monday-Mixed Doubles Final-12:30am live on Tennis Channel. All tennis from Melbourne, AUS)

I will admit that I didn’t stay up late/wake up early to watch Andy Roddick Saturday night. I’ve done that too many times in my life to have the stomach to do it again.

So when I woke up Sunday morning, I immediately raced to WNST.net to try to get the details.

I should have already known.

So with A-Rod once again meeting an early (and pathetic) demise in a Grand Slam event, I’m left searching for other reasons to watch.

Fortunately, the second most attractive tennis player in the world is still in the draw…

wozniacki

Now if Caroline Wozniacki doesn’t win, I’ll be forced to drawn my sorrows in 3-44 Foster’s.


Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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