Tag Archive | "James Franklin"

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Terps hold on for ugly 24-21 win at Boston College

Posted on 23 October 2010 by Luke Jones

Having not won a road game in over two years, the Terrapins would take a victory any way they could get it entering Saturday’s meeting with Boston College in Chestnut Hill.

The Terps certainly didn’t make it easy on themselves, squandering a 17-point lead in the fourth quarter and needing a fourth-down stop of Boston College running back Montel Harris with 1:13 remaining to preserve a 24-21 victory, snapping a 10-game road losing streak. Maryland (5-2, 2-1 ACC) used an opportunistic 21-point first half and a patchwork offensive line to do just enough against a Boston College team that has now lost five straight games.

A pair of unlikely heroes were the difference as safety Antwine Perez secured three turnovers — two interceptions and a fumble recovery — that led to 14 points for a Maryland offense that managed just 222 yards for the afternoon.

The other story was center Paul Pinegar shifting to right tackle — due to the horrific accident suffered by starter Pete DeSouza late Thursday night — and helping stabilize an already porous offensive line. The unit protected quarterback Danny O’Brien against a stout Eagles defense, allowing the redshirt freshman to toss three touchdown passes to three different receivers in the first half.

The unsettling fourth quarter in which the Maryland defense allowed two touchdown runs by Harris would not spoil what coach Ralph Friedgen labeled a “character” win for the Terps, who had not won a road game since Sept. 27, 2008 when they beat Clemson 20-17 in Death Valley.

Offensively, the Terps struggled to move the ball with any consistency, rushing for just 40 yards on 32 attempts, but managed to play turnover-free, something they failed to do in last week’s loss at Clemson and for much of last season’s disastrous 2-10 campaign. O’Brien made throws when he needed to, accumulating 182 yards through the air on 40 attempts, and rebounded from his three-interception performance in Death Valley.

Whether Maryland is really that much improved from a year ago is debatable — a soft schedule has unquestionably helped the cause — but the Terps suddenly find themselves only a victory away from becoming bowl-eligible with a favorable matchup against Wake Forest in College Park next Saturday.

The program is still worlds away from where it needs to be with the unsettling future of Friedgen and offensive coordinator — and coach-in-waiting — James Franklin yet to be determined by new athletic director Kevin Anderson.

But at 5-2, the Terps have fared better than most expected they would to this point, and the play of the freshman quarterback O’Brien merits optimism for the future, if enough pieces can be recruited to protect him upfront.

Saturday’s performance wasn’t pretty, but a “character” win at Boston College is sure better than the alternative.

Check out the final box score right here.

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Wednesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Wednesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 13 October 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Wednesday!

It’s a Happy Wednesday for me because once again I get to name two new “Greatest Song(s) of All Time This Week.” The first addition is the “new” addition to the list…”Grenade” by Bruno Mars…he played it on Saturday Night Live and it kicked a little ass…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3kfkTJCv4j8[/youtube]

The “retro” version of TGSOATTW? It’s also Lesson 3 for “Boomer Sooner” as I prepare her for her first Dave Matthews Band show in November. It’s “#41″…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PEbb621s_GI[/youtube]

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. National Football Post’s Matt Bowen says Ravens, New York Jets, Pittsburgh Steelers all playing better football than any NFC team

At this point, that’s probably true.

My hunch tells me that the only NFC teams that could end up being TRUE Super Bowl contenders would be the New Orleans Saints, Atlanta Falcons and New York Giants.

The Saints don’t look like Super Bowl contenders right now, but that’s mostly because they can’t run the ball. They’ll get Pierre Thomas and Reggie Bush back, and they should be able to run again. The Green Bay Packers can get back on that list should they figure out a way to run the ball-but I don’t see that happening if Brandon Jackson and John Kuhn are the primary backs.

The point is-those three aforementioned teams are the only teams that look like they can stand up next to the three premiere AFC teams-at least the three that have stood out thus far.

The good news for the Ravens is that as of right now-this season is shaping up to be a season about “balance.” In recent years, teams that have won have tended to have the most powerful offenses or simply the best quarterbacks.

Early on this year, the teams that have had the most success appear to be the teams that are the most balanced. If it remains that way, the Ravens should be in good shape.

Of course, we know damn well that things can change quickly in the NFL.

2. BaltimoreRavens.com’s John Eisenberg says 4-1 start doesn’t ‘guarantee’ anything for rest of season

Of course not. But if it guarantees that Jamie Edmondson takes more pictures in Ravens gear, than 4-1 was PLENTY WORTH IT! (Thanks SI with tip from Derek Arnold!)

jamieedmondson

3. Boston Globe’s Monique Walker says New England Patriots still remember AFC Wild Card playoff loss to Ravens last season

This was a topic I discussed yesterday during Ravens Reports on AM1570 WNST. There will almost definitely be some level of a “revenge” factor when it comes to the Patriots Sunday. Bill Belichick is a proud man. Tom Brady is a proud man. These are men who will CERTAINLY remember the embarrassing fashion in which they were dismissed at Gillette Stadium in January.

Does that mean that the Ravens will quickly run into a buzzsaw in Foxborough? Not necessarily. But do I think this Patriots team will look at this game with a bit more significance than other games? Sure.

Should I ask another question and follow it up with another quick answer? I think I’ve run the course.

4. Carroll County Times’ Aaron Wilson says John Harbaugh, Ravens concerned with Pats returner Brandon Tate

Before we move on from the on-field Ravens, a couple of things…

-Harbaugh apparently reiterated on his radio show last night that CB Josh Wilson’s hamstring injury is not a major concern. I say “apparently” because I didn’t listen to the show personally. How could I? The replay of “The Morning Reaction” was on WNST!

-The Ravens are back in action today at 1 Winning Drive in Owings Mills. We’ll be out there all day with full coverage; so make sure you’re tuned into AM1570, following us on Twitter (@WNST) and checking back in at WNST.net throughout the day. We’re expected to hear from Harbaugh, Joe Flacco and others before practice.

-And this picture of Ray Rice-which has been passed around Facebook over the last 24 hours (add me by searching “Glenn Clark” and adding the best looking person you find) is kinda awesome…

rayrice

5. SI’s George Dohrmann says former Ravens OT Jonathan Ogden admitted accepting benefits from agent Josh Luchs while at UCLA

The funniest part of the story is Luchs saying that during an entire Janet Jackson concert, J.O. screamed “Janet!” at the stage. Of course, I might do the same thing if she was rocking out a little “All For You”…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H2KabvvLF7M[/youtube]

For the record, Luchs maintains that he did NOT pay or give benefits to either Ravens TE Todd Heap or LB Terrell Suggs while he was working with Gary Wichard and pursuing them at Arizona State.

Did you miss Josh Luchs with Drew Forrester and Thyrl Nelson on “The Mobtown Sports Beat” Wednesday morning on AM1570 WNST? Make sure you head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net today to check it out. Some other things you can find in the Audio Vault include…

  • Dabo Swinney (Clemson Football Coach)-who joined Drew Wednesday on “The Morning Reaction” to preview the Tigers’ contest with the Terrapins Saturday
  • Craig Laughlin (Washington Capitals Color Analyst-Comcast SportsNet)-who joined Drew Wednesday to talk some Caps hockey
  • AJ Daulerio (Deadspin Editor)-who joined Drew Wednesday to discuss the Brett Favre/Jenn Sterger controversy
  • Ralph Cindrich (Long-time NFL agent)-who joined Drew Wednesday to offer his opinion on the Josh Luchs story
  • Jon Anik (host of ESPN’s “MMA Live”)-who joined Thyrl and John Rallo Tuesday on “The MMA Report”
  • Marcellus Wiley (ESPN)-who went around the NFL with Rex Snider Tuesday on “The Afternoon Drive”
  • Dan Wetzel (Yahoo! Sports)-who discussed his new book “Death to the BCS” with Thyrl Tuesday

It’s all in the Audio Vault-so consider today planned. Again. Because I’m awesome like that. Again.

6. The Sun’s Jeff Zrebiec says Buck Showalter had surgery Tuesday in Texas, no decisions imminent for Orioles coaching staff

Impossible.

There’s no chance that human injuries could affect a superhuman like Buck Showalter enough that he required knee surgery. I refuse to believe it.

That being said, the handful of folks who are waiting for news about the Birds’ coaching staff will have to keep waiting. In the meantime, MASN passed along that the O’s are apparently interested in Seibu Lions SS Hiroyuki Nakajima.

And you didn’t think Andy MacPhail was going to make the moves necessary to win in 2011. I know you feel stupid now. Hiroyuki Nakajima, babe. What are the dates for the 2011 World Series???

7. Washington Post’s Eric Prisbell says Clemson coach Dabo Swinney prepared to face Maryland QB’s Jamarr Robinson, Danny O’Brien Saturday in Death Valley

Swinney told Drew Forrester this morning that having to prepare for both QB’s makes Maryland particularly tough. Maybe so, but I generally don’t think the Terps can win big games if they try to split reps between two quarterbacks.

They might not do that. They might end up having one real “starter” and a package for the other QB. But it’s totally possible that Robinson and O’Brien could alternate series in James Franklin’s offense. I would prefer the former.

I mean, I would prefer having one REALLY GOOD QB, but sometimes you just have to work with what you’ve got.

8. D1scourse’s Patrick Stevens says Terps coach Ralph Friedgen has good recent history at Clemson’s Memorial Stadium

I keep being reminded of Maryland’s win at Clemson two years ago. Maryland probably wasn’t quite as good as their record indicated, but they were able to hang around just long enough to let something goofy happen to help them win. I don’t THINK the same thing will happen Saturday, but it certainly could.

You know what else could happen? Kayla Collins could call me. I don’t THINK it will happen-but it certainly could. (Thanks The Smoking Jacket!)

smokingjacket

9. Annapolis Capital’s Bill Wagner says Navy coach Ken Niumatalolo expects FB Alexander Teich to be able to start Saturday vs. SMU

And with Vince Murray banged up, the Midshipmen could certainly use Teich on the field; as the Mustangs can score points.

They’ve scored at least 21 points in all six of their games, including 35 against Washington State and 42 against Rice. They’re VERY capable of scoring points in the June Jones offense.

The Mids however have scored 14 points or less in three of their five games thus far. It looks like they’ll need to score to win Saturday at Navy-Marine Corps Stadium. It won’t be easy.

10. TowsonTigers.com says DT Yaky Ibia named semi-finalist for National Football Foundation’s William V. Campbell Trophy

This is very cool. Cool enough that even Maggie Q should be interested. (Thanks Guyism!)

maggieq

And finally, I leave you with this…

I know everyone’s already seen it-but here’s the Grover/Sesame Street/Old Spice YouTube gem for the 5 or 6 of you that may have somehow missed…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zkd5dJIVjgM[/youtube]

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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After Leading Terps Through “Adversity”, O’Brien Deserves Chance to Stay Under Center

Posted on 25 September 2010 by Glenn Clark

COLLEGE PARK, Md. — Starting QB Jamarr Robinson (shoulder) was unable to practice at all. WR Tony Logan took the majority of snaps with the first team offense throughout the week.

As Head Coach Ralph Friedgen explained, the Maryland Terrapins were faced with quite a bit of “adversity” in the week leading up to Saturday’s game against the Florida International Panthers.

Redshirt freshman QB Danny O’Brien got the first start of his Terps career, and he made the most of it in leading the Terps (3-1) to a 42-28 win over Florida International (0-3) at Byrd Stadium.

It would be disingenuous to label the performance by O’Brien with some sort of overstated term like “brilliant” or “dazzling.” Instead, the performance would be best labeled as “effective.” Of course, “effective” was exactly what Friedgen and Offensive Coordinator James Franklin needed against a tricky Panthers defense that had put together a six sack, four interception performance at Texas A&M just a week earlier.

“Basically, we didn’t have a quarterback to practice with all week” said Friedgen. “(O’Brien) didn’t get many reps, and that’s always my concern. I was very impressed with his poise. He never got rattled. You’d think he’d at least be a little bit nervous, but I never got that from him.”

“We were trying to protect the quarterback, so we were trying to run the ball early” added Franklin. “That wasn’t as going as well as we would have liked, so the quick passing game was another way to move the ball and be able to protect the quarterback.”

They didn’t need “spectacular”, they just needed “effective.” They got it.

O’Brien finished the game a tidy 18-27 for 250 yards with two TD’s and no interceptions. His first touchdown pass to WR LaQuan Williams (Poly) was a particularly impressive nine yard fade to the back left corner of the south endzone. He also connected with WR Torrey Smith-the team’s top playmaker-eight times for 159 yards, including a 68 yard pitch and catch TD. He handled FIU pressure very well and effectively used his checkdown options instead of forcing passes into dangerous spots on the football field.

It was an especially effective performance for O’Brien considering how little Maryland was able to do on the ground in the game. Maryland finished the game with 169 net yards rushing, but all but 28 of them came on three big rushing TD plays. RB Da’Rel Scott broke off TD runs of 56 and 9 yards, while RB Davin Meggett capped scoring with a 76 yard TD scamper. But Maryland’s overall inability to establish a consistent running attack allowed FIU to hold a 34:05-25:55 advantage in time of possession and a 98-55 advantage in total offensive plays.

“I think it was a great team victory” said O’Brien. “I feel like I had a pretty good performance, (there were) a few plays I’d like back. We ran the ball and we protected great. I feel like everytime we do that, we have the receivers and running backs to beat everybody.

O’Brien got the start just a week after re-aggravating an ankle injury on his only snap in a 31-17 loss to the West Virginia Mountaineers at Milan Puskar Stadium in Morgantown. He said his ankle was “close to” 100%, and wasn’t a factor during the game. Franklin confirmed that Robinson would have been available in an emergency situation, but Friedgen said Logan (who returned a punt 85 yards for a TD in the 2nd quarter) would have been the team’s backup QB.

The only problem for Friedgen and the Terps’ staff is that the performance will do little to settle their overall QB picture. Robinson and O’Brien had both played in all three games before Saturday, but Robinson was the clear starter. In fact, O’Brien saw the field for just one snap in both the Navy and WVU games, with his only snap resulting in a fumble each time. It was only against the FCS-level Morgan State Bears than O’Brien saw significant playing time before getting the start in Saturday’s victory.

“I think both (Robinson and O’Brien) will end up still playing” said Friedgen. “I think both of them have strengths. I think if we’re smart we can utilize both of their talents and we should try to do that. I’ll know that a little bit more when I see what Jamarr’s condition is.”

While Friedgen is likely to continue to work both quarterbacks into games, fans throughout the Old Line State will undoubtedly spend the week leading up to next Saturday’s contest with Duke calling for Friedgen to go with O’Brien exclusively. Fans took to Facebook and Twitter throughout the game Saturday (although only 33,254 were announced in attendance at the game) to make such statements about the QB situation. That controversy is unlikely to die down as the Terrapins face an uphill battle with only ACC games remaining on the regular season schedule.

O’Brien certainly appears to have the mental makeup to be a winner. Friedgen praised O’Brien’s mental makeup after the game, saying “that’s what you need at the quarterback position. You need a guy that can make decisions, put you in the right play and give you a chance to be successful.”

O’Brien is also unquestionably talented, and did not appear rattled by a defense that entered the game with the 28th ranked defense in the nation despite playing their first two games against opponents from BCS automatic qualifying conferences (Rutgers, Texas A&M). That being said, the two solid performances from O’Brien this season have come in emotionally flat environments; as both the Morgan State win and Saturday’s win were played in front of less than full crowds in College Park.

O’Brien has never played against an ACC opponent of any sort, while Robinson started games against bowl-bound teams like Virginia Tech and Florida State last season. O’Brien hasn’t played in electric environment, while Robinson nearly beat the Seminoles in the last game Bobby Bowden would ever coach in Tallahassee. O’Brien is not a particularly mobile QB, while Robinson has already registered a 100 yard rushing game (against the Hokies) in his career.

There are benefits to playing both quarterbacks (if both are healthy), but there appears to be some real need for consistency and leadership at the QB position. Fellow backfield mate Scott said of O’Brien “he’s a very poised young person.”

Friedgen has always remained loyal to his upperclassmen, but perhaps in this instance he would be better served to stick with O’Brien. O’Brien appears to have the better combination of physical and mental skills to win, and Robinson could still be capable of entering games to throw opponents a different look. Maryland tried to employ a similar combo two seasons ago with starter Chris Turner and speedy Florida transfer Josh Portis, but Portis often came onto the field without understanding play calls.

Loyalty is admirable, but for a team that could attract only 35,000 fans on a beautiful day in the Mid-Atlantic area, winning is more important. Incoming Athletic Director Kevin Anderson isn’t likely to value loyalty at the end of the season the same way he would value wins and losses.

In this instance, sticking with the quarterback that stood up in the face of adversity is probably the best way to go.

-G

Hear from Friedgen, O’Brien, Franklin and Scott NOW in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault right here at WNST.net!

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Thursday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Thursday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 23 September 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Thursday!

It’s a Happy Thursday for me because I ventured over to the “Get Spicy Nuggets” website yesterday and went ahead and made a reservation to try out the new product at Chick-Fil-A Nottingham Square next Tuesday…

nuggets

The best part about the reservation? I got an email RIGHT BACK from the great Steve Pavlovsky telling me he was “excited” to have me come by that week. Love it!

I’m hoping the Spicy Nuggets will go well with the Christian Moerlein Golden Helles I picked up in Cincinnati last weekend…

moerlein

I don’t have much positive to say about the Queen City, but this was definitely a good decision.

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. WNST.net’s Glenn Clark says Ravens released S Ken Hamlin to make room for CB Cary Williams on roster

The only surprising thing about the Ken Hamlin decision is that we had heard from a few different sources that the player getting cut was more likely to be DT Lamar Divens.

But everything about cutting Ken Hamlin really does make sense. The word was that Hamlin was holding a roster spot just until (if?) Ed Reed comes back. The Ravens got value from Hamlin in the secondary and on Special Teams; but Cary Williams is expected to also give them some value in the secondary and on Special Teams.

It’s semi-surprising. It certainly isn’t stunning.

2. WNST.net’s Drew Forrester doesn’t think Derrick Mason media ban any sort of ‘big deal’

And it isn’t.

There’s an argument that Derrick is better off NOT talking to the media right now as he can likely only be frustrated with his role in the offense and the offense in general. Instead of saying something silly about Cam Cameron, Joe Flacco or Anquan Boldin; it might be better for Mason to keep his mouth shut.

Now-it is CERTAINLY hypocritical of Mason to choose not to talk to reporters but still talk on WBAL on his radio show. That’s completely lame, and he should be reminded of that.

3. National Football Post’s says Jared Gaither says notions of holdout ‘foolish’

There’s NOTHING about having a player try to NOT play in order to make more money that makes sense to me. I understand the frustration with Gaither not being on the field, but I have NEVER doubted whether or not he was hurt.

You know what else would be foolish? NOT posting this picture of Lisa Morales. (Thanks DJMICK via Busted Coverage!)

morales

4. BaltimoreRavens.com’s Mike Duffy says Donte’ Stallworth, Tavares Gooden OUT; Le’Ron McClain, Derrick Mason, Jared Gaither, Browns’ Jake Delhomme DNP in practice Wednesday

And before we move on from the Ravens, a couple of things…

-The Ravens are back on the practice field today at 1 Winning Drive in Owings Mills. We are expected to hear from Offensive Coordinator Cam Cameron, Defensive Coordinator Greg Mattison and Special Teams Coordinator Jerry Rosburg and LB Ray Lewis today as well. Make sure you’re following us on Twitter (@WNST) and tuned in throughout the day on AM1570.

-Did you miss Ravens OL Chris Chester this morning with Drew Forrester on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST? Make sure you head on over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net to check it out. Some other things you can find in the Audio Vault include…

  • Steve Beuerlein (CBS Color Analyst)-who previewed Ravens/Browns with Drew Thursday morning
  • Sean Salisbury (“Sean Unfiltered”-Voice America Radio)-who went around the NFL with Drew Thursday morning
  • Our “Morning Reaction Cheap Shots” from Thursday morning, including Drew’s shot at Rex Ryan
  • Rhea Hughes (610 WIP Philadelphia)-who discussed the Eagles’ Michael Vick/Kevin Kolb/Andy Reid situation with Rex Wednesday
  • Kevin Lempa (Terps Safeties Coach)-who joined Thyrl Nelson Wednesday for the “Terrapins Coaches Report”
  • Les Carpenter (Yahoo! Sports)-who talked Braylon Edwards, etc. with Thyrl Wednesday
  • Mario Cristobal (Florida International Head Coach)-who previewed FIU’s visit to College Park with Thyrl Wednesday
  • PLENTY of audio from Owings Mills Wednesday, including John Harbaugh, Joe Flacco, Ray Rice, Haloti Ngata, Matt Birk, TJ Houshmandzadeh and Jarret Johnson

It’s all there in the Audio Vault. Make sure you check it out today-and shower me with praise for handling your daily plans.

5. The AP says David Ortiz, John Lackey helped Boston Red Sox avoid sweep at hands of Orioles at Fenway Park

I guess Kevin Millwood serves to prove that there IS some sort of immunity to Buck Showalter in Charm City. I wouldn’t have believed it otherwise. 5IP, 6ER, 7H (and 1BB) don’t get the job done.

Earlier in the year I said this jokingly, but now I genuinely mean it. You can’t win them all. Games like last night will happen-even to Buck Showalter!

6. The AP/WNST.net offer numerical evidence of loss

You REALLY don’t want to look at these numbers, especially if your name is Matt Wieters (we’ll get back to him).

Instead of looking at the numbers, look at Brittany Dailey. It will be a much more pleasant experience…

dailey

7. CSNBaltimore.com’s Pete Kerzel says O’s Wieters has ‘room for growth and improvement’

And before we move on from the Birds, a couple of things…

-Make sure you check out Jay Trucker’s Brian Roberts blog today at WNST.net. I think it’s pretty interesting; as 2005 was the last time baseball fans in Baltimore had any level of excitement.

-The Orioles are off tonight, they head up to Canada (hopefully Adam Jones won’t have any trouble) to open a series with the Toronto Blue Jays tomorrow night. Chris Tillman will face Brett Cecil in the first game; and Jeremy Guthrie will go for the Birds Saturday night. Otherwise, we don’t know much about the pitching matchups.

8. D1scourse’s Patrick Stevens says Maryland, Texas agree to football series in 2017-2018

The best number Patrick points out in his blog? Maryland is 0-3 all time against the ‘Horns; and have been outscored 102-0 in the three games.

Yikes.

A lot could change between now and the trip to Austin in 2017 or the return at FedEx Field in DC in 2018. Will Muschamp will likely be the head coach for Texas; and who knows what will happen in College Park as they try to sort out Ralph Friedgen and James Franklin.

But I don’t think everything will change. I’m no betting man, but if the early line was Maryland (+28), I don’t know if I could bet the Terps.

9. TowsonTigers.com says visit from Princeton, trips to George Washington and UMBC highlight Tigers’ hoops schedule

I remember Bob Ehrlich made an appearance in Catonsville when Princeton visited UMBC a few years back. I think he was still governor then.

I wonder….eh, I’ll leave that alone for now.

It’s always cool to have celebrities sitting courtside at big games. Maybe the visit from Princeton would even be cool enough for Erin Heatherton to sit courtside. (Thanks Guyism!)

heatherton

10. Inside Lacrosse’s Danielle Bernstein says former Navy lacrosse player Brandon Looney killed in Afghanistan

This goofy blog is much too irreverent to do justice for this terrible loss. Brandon Looney (like so many of the young men who we’ve lost in Afghanistan and Iraq) won’t get the attention that a Pat Tillman did; but he deserves a great deal of honor.

We thank Brandon Looney for giving the greatest sacrifice, and we wish the best to his family, friends and everyone in the Midshipmen family.

God bless.

And finally, I leave you with this.

30 Rock is back tonight. That pleases me.

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

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Maryland’s Good Karma Completely Gone After Loss to West Virginia

Posted on 18 September 2010 by Glenn Clark

MORGANTOWN, WV — The trip to Morgantown is a bit different than a visit from Morgan State.

The Maryland Terrapins (2-1) were completely dominated by the West Virginia Mountaineers (3-0) Saturday,  31-17 at Mountaineer Field at Milan Puskar Stadium. The game was not quite as close as the score would indicate, as Maryland trailed 28-0 early in the 2nd half.

Maryland was outplayed in every aspect of the game, with the only exception being a solid performance by punter Travis Baltz-who also kicked a field goal in defeat. The Terps briefly made things interesting in the 2nd half thanks largely to two long Torrey Smith TD grabs, but the ‘Eers easily snuffed out the potential Maryland rally.

The loss isn’t particularly devastating from a football perspective for Maryland, as West Virginia is a very good team (ranked #21st in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches’ Poll) and the game was played on the road. Should Maryland knock off Florida International next Saturday at Byrd Stadium (as they are expected to do), they would improve to 3-1 and need just three ACC wins to get bowl eligible this season. With Duke coming to College Park the following week, Maryland still has a realistic chance to start the season 4-1. They also showed improvement over the team’s last visit to WVU; a 45-24 beatdown suffered in 2006.

But for other reasons that may be slightly less tangible, this loss was particularly devastating for this Maryland team.

With a last second win over Navy in Baltimore to open the season and a blowout win over Morgan State in College Park, the Terps had already matched their 2009 season total in wins through just two weeks. With the Navy thriller being seen by a national TV (ESPN) audience on Labor Day, there was a measure of positive karma surrounding Head Coach Ralph Friedgen’s squad that was desperately needed.

The decision to retain Friedgen (and Offensive coordinator/Head Coach in waiting James Franklin) following the disastrous 2-10 season was not met with any level of real excitement. Interim Athletic Director Randy Eaton told the Baltimore Sun before the Labor Day battle at M&T Bank Stadium that the program had sold less than 19,000 season tickets this season. Two wins over in-state programs weren’t going to suddenly spike ticket sales, but they did offer hope that a foundation could be laid for a turnaround season.

That foundation didn’t crumble entirely, but it certainly wasn’t built open in Morgantown. It wasn’t just that Maryland lost the game; but also that they put together a completely woeful performance in the process.

Maryland was bad in (almost) every aspect of the game. They allowed eight sacks offensively, a record for the Friedgen era. In the process, QB Jamarr Robinson injured his shoulder (not believed to be serious-he stayed in for the entire 2nd half) and QB Danny O’Brien re-aggravated an ankle injury with forced him out of the game. OT Justin Gilbert was also hurt in the process. Maryland doesn’t know the full details of the injury, but Friedgen said Gilbert “heard a pop”, and the team believes the injury to be significant.

The Terps were not able to get anything going on the ground, finishing the game with -10 net rushing yards. They put together 227 yards via the air; but 140 of them came on the two long TD passes to Smith.

Defensively, Maryland was unimpressive throughout. The Terps allowed West Virginia to amass 469 yards of total offense, 24 first downs and 11 of 18 third down conversions. The first two TD passes from Geno Smith to Tavon Austin (Dunbar) were particularly ugly,  as Friedgen admitted defenders “blew some assignments” to help the ‘Eers establish an early 14-0 lead.

Even more disheartening was the lack of discipline the Terrapins showed. Maryland committed 10 penalties for a total of 77 yards, including three delay of game penalties on their initial possession. Offensive coordinator James Franklin said the penalties occurred because the team “couldn’t hear the cadence” from Robinson; but that certainly doesn’t excuse such a poor drive.

Things could very well turn around for this Maryland football team this season. They won’t play many opponents who will be as difficult as West Virginia (only Miami jumps out as a similarly dangerous opponent), and the mistakes they made Saturday afternoon are correctable. The bigger issues will come off the field. Instead of igniting support within a fanbase that is anything but passionate; this performance will likely ignite responses like “Friedgen can’t do it” or “Franklin isn’t good enough.” What’s worse, this type of performance might not elicit any sort of response whatsoever.

Frankly, with the game on ESPNU and the outcome lopsided-the fanbase in the Old Line State might not even think about Maryland football.

That’s the biggest problem incoming Athletic Director Kevin Anderson faces with the football program.

The good karma from the first two wins is completely gone. Maryland football became Maryland football again Saturday in Morgantown.

For the program to survive under “The Fridge” past this season, performances in big games like Saturday’s cannot continue. Maryland can’t simply win games against the likes of FIU and Duke and hope to win over a fanbase, they must go out and perform like a team worthy of recognition against more significant opponents.

That didn’t happen Saturday.

-G

—————————————

Hear from Friedgen and Franklin following Saturday’s loss NOW in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net.

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Wednesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Wednesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 08 September 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Wednesday!

It’s a Happy Wednesday for me because I get to name two new “Greatest Song(s) of All Time This Week.” There’s few things I enjoy this much in the world.

The Retro version? This is too easy. We went drunkpin bowling for my birthday Saturday night, and “Mo Money Mo Problems” nearly got me thrown out. Absolutely the greatest hip hop song of all time…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=twkh0YiInPM[/youtube]

Here’s the NEW version of the GSOATTW…Lil’ Wayne & Drake…Language probably not safe for work…

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

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. WNST.net’s Glenn Clark says new Ravens WR Houshmandzadeh ‘entertaining’ during introductory press conference in Owings Mills

Just go ahead and say it. “Championship”…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vs1N5NYyb24[/youtube]

TJ Houshmandzadeh was plenty entertaining at 1 Winning Drive Tuesday-whether it was saying Cincinnati Bengals coaches were “nervous” before facing the Baltimore Ravens or saying his departure from Seattle had “nothing to do with football.” He was intelligent and engaging, and made a press conference interesting.

Unfortunately, an impressive press conference doesn’t count for any wins in the AFC North standings. What happens on the field will matter MUCH more than anything that happens in any press conference.

Unless of course something like one of these happens at a Ravens press conference this season. That WOULD be newsworthy…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bRBfZna8QlA[/youtube]

2. BaltimoreRavens.com’s Mike Duffy says LB Sergio Kindle believes he’ll be able to return this season

If the Ravens don’t get Sergio Kindle back this season, the decision to trade Antwan Barnes to Philadelphia looks more and more foolish to me.

I have a bad feeling that pass rush will be an area of concern within a month or so of the start of the season. Bringing in Josh Wilson improves the secondary, but the secondary will only be as good as the pass rush will allow it to be.

Terrell Suggs and Trevor Pryce are the most important puzzle pieces, but the team will need to be able to get a rush from elsewhere. The number of injuries the team could help Paul Kruger or Edgar Jones be active against the Jets Monday night, and if so they’ll need to show some ability to get to the quarterback to stay active.

I just feel like it’s going to be a concern. Getting Kindle back between Week 6 and Week 9 could help that.

3. National Football Post’s Aaron Wilson says Ravens worked out former Atlanta Falcons, LSU CB Chevis Jackson Tuesday

Jackson wouldn’t be a player they’d be looking at for the active roster (which could have something to do with why he didn’t join the team Tuesday), but instead to join the practice squad after Prince Miller signed with the New England Patriots.

The real question is-if the Ravens are conducting tryouts, why wouldn’t they give Alyssa Pallett a look??? (Thanks, The Smoking Jacket!)

pallett

4. The Sun’s Tim Smith says Lyric Opera House to be renamed after former Ravens owner Art Modell and wife Pat Modell

I know nothing about opera and less about donating millions of dollars. With that being said, I think this is an awesome story shared between two Charm City institutions.

The first performance at the new Modell Center? A Ray Lewis/Old Spice musical extravaganza…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sxqlw3cKZHA[/youtube]

5. Sporting News’ Vinnie Iyer says Brian Baldinger, Steve Beuerlein, Ron Jaworski, Steve Largent, Joe Theismann, Marcellus Wiley amongst former NFL players who think Ravens will reach Super Bowl

A few things before we move on from the Ravens…

-As you already know, Jaworski will be part of the broadcast team Monday; as he, Mike Tirico, Jon Gruden, Suzy Kolber and Michelle Tafoya will have the call for ESPN from the new Meadowlands Stadium in East Rutherford.

-The Ravens return to the practice field today for a “bonus day” in Owings Mills. We’ll be out there live, and I’ll check back in with Thyrl Nelson at 12:30 on “The Mobtown Sports Beat” and Rex Snider at 4:30 on “The Afternoon Drive” to let you know what’s going on in Ravensland.

6. The AP’s Howie Rumberg says Orioles got to CC Sabathia early in win over New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium

Look-you don’t have to even bother asking if I watched last night. I played in my weekly Tuesday night Kickball/Ultimate Frisbee showdown in Bel Air, then I came home to watch Kim Clijsters and Rafael Nadal in Flushing Meadows.

And since I haven’t been watching the games, I will admit that I’m always skeptical when I check back to see the scores. I mean, the O’s can’t REALLY be on the verge of a sweep in The Bronx, can they? They couldn’t REALLY have beaten CC Sabathia last night thanks in part to a Nolan Reimold homer, could they?

There’s so much evidence that it almost HAS to be true, but I’ll continue to admit that I’m skeptical. Can you blame me?

7. The AP/WNST.net offer numerical evidence of win

So many good things to look at here:

-Jake Arrieta went 6 and a third last night, allowing just 2 earned runs on 8 hits. He walked 1 and struck out 3.
-Not only did Reimold homer, but Ty Wigginton went 2-4 with a double, run scored and RBI; Nick Markakis went 2-4 with a run scored and RBI; and Brian Roberts went 2-5 with a run scored.

So-as has become a new custom around here-I encourage you to ABSOLUTELY go look at the numbers, but then come back to check out Jodi Gordon courtesy of The Beer Goggler via Busted Coverage…

jodigordon

8. MLB.com’s Brittany Ghiroli says Troy Patton, Pedro Viola called up; David Hernandez activated Tuesday

And before we move on from the Orioles, a few things…

-The Birds and Yanks wrap their 3 game series this week with a matinee showdown at Yankee Stadium. Brad Bergesen takes the hill against Ivan Nova, first pitch is on MASN at 1:05pm.

-Did you miss Bowie Baysox manager Brad Komminsk wrapping up the season with Drew Forrester this morning on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST? Make sure you head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault today here at WNST.net to check it out. Some other things you can find in the Audio Vault include…

  • John Harper (New York Daily News)-who talked Orioles, Yankees and Buck Showalter with Drew Wednesday morning
  • Justin Gimelstob (Tennis Channel)-who went around the U.S. Open with Drew Wednesday morning as well
  • Lorenzo Neal (Former Ravens, Bengals FB)-who discussed his former teammate TJ Houshmandzadeh with Rex Snider Tuesday afternoon
  • Bob Glauber (Newsday/ESPN First Take)-who discussed the New York Jets before the Monday Night Football showdown with Rex Tuesday afternoon
  • Frankie Edgar (UFC Lightweight Champion)-who joined Thyrl Nelson and John Rallo on “The MMA Report” Tuesday
  • The entire TJ Houshmandzadeh press conference (with an introduction from WR Coach Jim Hostler) from Owings Mills, and the entire Kevin Anderson press conference (with incoming school president Wallace Loh and acting president Nariman Farvardin) from College Park

It’s all in the Audio Vault, make sure you check it out today. Then you can send me a card. Or a fruit basket. I’d love a fruit basket.

9. The AP says new Maryland AD Kevin Anderson wants to take Terps from ‘good to great’

There’s no question that Debbie Yow left the Terrapins’ athletic program in very good shape-both on the field and economically.

That being said, the school would clearly like to see their “money” sports competing at a more consistent national level.

That’s where Kevin Anderson comes in.

There are two pieces in place now with Dr. Loh established as President and Anderson as Athletic Director.

Now everything shifts to the football program.

A win over Navy was nice, but Ralph Friedgen and James Franklin know exactly what they’re up against. The leadership of the school and the department will have to decide what they’re looking for, and whether the current head coach and/or the head coach in waiting can meet those expectations.

They might not be coaching for their jobs-but I don’t think it’s unfair to say they very well could be.

10. D1scourse’s Patrick Stevens says Terrapins DT Joe Vellano, S Kenny Tate amongst ACC Players of the Week

Trust me, I asked-this type of honor is nice but does NOT earn you a date with Tal Berkovich. (Thanks Guyism!)

berkovich

It really should though.

And finally, I leave you with this.

The Big Lebowski meets The Matrix. The Dude abides…

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

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Maryland Hires Army AD Kevin Anderson To Same Position

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Maryland Hires Army AD Kevin Anderson To Same Position

Posted on 04 September 2010 by Ryan Chell

The University of Maryland announced Saturday that it has found a replacement for the vacated athletic director spot left by Debbie Yow, who recently left College Park in July after 16 years on the job to take the same position at N.C. State, where her sister, Kay, coached women’s basketball for over 30 years.

On Tuesday, Army AD Kevin Anderson is likely to be introduced as the school’s new athletic director when he meets with the school’s staff, and will step right into Yow’s old position and removes Randy Eaton from the job of interim athletic director.

Kevin Anderson

“I will confirm it’s Kevin Anderson,” senior associate AD Kathy Worthington told The Sun’s Jeff Barker.

“Kevin has built a solid program of competitive and academic success at the U.S. Military Academy, supporting the student-athlete and demonstrating that academics and athletics can go hand in hand,” said Dr.Wallace Loh, the school’s new president. “I am convinced that his leadership will raise Maryland Athletics to even greater heights. We are delighted to welcome Kevin into the Terrapin family.”

Maryland’s 16-man athletic search, headed by  Loh and which included the likes of former Maryland greats like Len Elmore, whittled down their search to three candidates: Buffalo AD Warde Manuel, UConn AD Kevin Hathaway( a Maryland grad), and Anderson, with Anderson expected to be the school’s choice.

Anderson, the first African-American ever selected to be athletic director at West Point, was introduced as the athletic director at West Point in 2004, and since taking the job has helped improved the athletic program and focus at Army.

In his first season on the job, he brought the school a national title in rifle, and sent seven of its 25 programs to the NCAA Tournament. 17 of the 25 programs finished with winning records in the Patriot League that same year.

2004-2005 was also the first time in 27 years that Navy finished with a winning record over the Naval Academy, and to some at West Point, that’s all the matters.

He was also a big part in securing TV deals for the annual Army-Navy football game every year with CBS until 2018, and also has brokered deals to play Notre Dame in Yankee Stadium.

Army Navy

He led the effort to renovate and revitalize the famous Michie Stadium at West Point, and had several new athletic facilities built on campus to better help the recruits at their athletic and educational activities.

He also brokered deals with Nike and ESPN for his fooball programs, continuing to bring money into the school, as well as showing his philanthropic side as well, as the school established records for annual giving each of the five years at West Point.

Anderson spent nearly 20 years as an associate athletic director at Oregon State and Cal, and was an integral part in building up the Beavers’ football program and was credited with the hire of coach Mike Riley to the program.

Mike Riley

He would do the same when he took on the full AD job at Army, hiring Rich Ellerson as the 36th coach of the program in the last several years.

And much like Debbie Yow at Maryland, Anderson balanced the budget at Oregon State for the first time in 15 years under his direction.

He will now step into a program at the University of Maryland with 27 athletic programs and a 55 million dollar budget.

And with the hire of Riley, he could be asked to lead the search again if Maryland should decide to not bring back Ralph Friedgen or offensive coordinator-head coach in waiting James Franklin-after this year.

Ralph Friedgen

Anderson has also served on several full-time selection committees for the NCAA, including the McLendon Minority Scholarship Committee, the Basketball Academic Enhancement Group, as well as being named the VP of the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics, the third person named to the job.

He will be introduced later next week.

Tune into WNST and keep reading WNST.net for more news regarding Maryland’s new Athletic Director! WNST-We Never Stop Talking Baltimore Sports!

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Wednesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Wednesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 11 August 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Wednesday!

It’s a Happy Wednesday for me because myself, the lovely “Boomer Sooner”, “The Luckiest Dang Roommate on the Face of the Planet” and “The Luckiest Dang Roommate’s Girlfriend on the Face of the Planet” all wandered up to Camden, New Jersey (which might be the single WORST place on the face of the planet) to check out the great Jimmy Buffett.

I would sit here and sing the praises of Jimmy Buffett (and/or the multiple Coronas we downed beforehand), but you already know just how great he is. Instead, I’ll let you know that my personal favorite Jimmy Buffett live song is “Southern Cross”…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i7Ah-Ch8NQ4[/youtube]

And yes, you ARE allowed to pick a cover as your favorite song to see live. Of course, now that I found out that it is ALSO Boomer Sooner’s favorite song; I think I’m going to have to consider another. I mean, this is still relatively new for me. I can’t let her think that I respect/value her opinion, can I? She’s a girl!

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. The AP says Birds crushed 4 homers against Justin Masterson, bullpen in win over Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field

WHO ARE THESE GUYS?!?!?!?

Felix Pie, Corey Patterson, Matt Wieters and Luke Scott all homered last night (Luke Scott did something on the road?); and the team survived a shaky performance from Jake Arrieta to win their 7th in their last 8.

I don’t know what else to say. The fact is it DOESN’T matter as the team has won 7 of 8 but STILL has the worst record in Major League Baseball-although they’re just a half game in front (behind) of the Pittsburgh Pirates in that race. However, it is really nice to have a stretch like this. They’re not going to win 87.5% of their games the rest of the way; but if they can compete to stay around .500 the rest of the way, we’d all be entertained.

But it still wouldn’t REALLY matter.

What matters is what happens this offseason, and what happens next spring.

But if we’re going to have to watch the games, I guess we might as well be entertained. It’s either this or watching YouTube clips “Come On” highlights from Arrested Development and South Park…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S5BMQ-xpTog[/youtube]

Okay, that clip was more entertaining. Sorry to the O’s…

2. The AP/WNST.net provide numerical evidence of another win

By the way, Arrieta’s final line last night was 6IP, 6R (5ER), 6H, 2BB, 3K. I feel like I’m going to hear someone describe his start as “gutty” at some point today.

You know the (new) drill here. You actually DO want to look at the numbers now, which is stunning. Do that, then look at this picture of Nikki Mitchell from The Smoking Jacket/Busted Coverage. Win/win I call it!

nikkimitchell

3. MLB.com’s Brittany Ghiroli says Mike Gonzalez, Koji Uehara could take save opportunities from Alfredo Simon

I know Buck Showalter is all about winning games (and trust me, I’m GRATEFUL for that); but I don’t think Uehara makes sense.

Uehara’s 2 year, $10 million deal ends in a month and a half; and I just can’t fathom Andy MacPhail having future plans for him in Charm City. Then again, MacPhail was the guy who gave him stupid money and a stupid promised start in the rotation originally.

If Showalter wants to find out whether or not he has a closer on the roster for next season (and I’m guessing he doesn’t), he should go with Simon and Gonzalez. If he’s just hellbent on making sure Steve in Homeland loses his bet with Drew Forrester; maybe it’s worth taking a shot on ol’ “Sideburns.”

4. Seattle Times’ Geoff Baker says former Mariners manager Wakamatsu could join Buck Showalter’s Orioles staff

Apparently these two have a history that dates back to the Arizona Diamondbacks, and this would be a natural fit. I’d be fine with it, but I’d prefer they go out and get an actual PLAYER from the Emerald City. For example, is Ichiro available?

This of course is part of the question surrounding what the Orioles’ staff will look like a season from now. Few in Baltimore would be saddened to see Terry Crowley depart, but baseball minds will tell you he’s still amongst the better true hitting coaches in baseball. There’s an argument that the young pitchers on the Orioles staff would be better suited to have Rick Kranitz stick around for continuity, but there’s also an argument he hasn’t earned that right just yet.

With no offense to Gary Allenson, T-Bone Shelby or Jeff Datz; those jobs really aren’t significant enough to worry about who handles them. Should Buck Showalter have someone from his past (Toronto Blue Jays 3B Coach Brian Butterfield comes to mind) that he wants to fill the role; that’s fine. Should he decide to keep one or more of the current guys in place, that would be fine as well.

5. The Sun’s Dean Jones Jr. says Scott Moore homered in Norfolk Tides’ loss to Indianapolis Indians on farm

And before we move on from the Orioles, a few things:

-The Birds and Tribe face off again tonight, with first pitch from the Comeback City at 7:05pm on MASN. Brad Bergesen faces Josh Tomlin-whoever that is.

-Did you miss Hall of Famer Earl Weaver with Drew Forrester this morning on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST? Drew and Earl talked about Buck Showalter, the anniversary of Cal Ripken’s MLB debut and much more. Head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault today to check it out. Some other things you can hear in the Audio Vault include…

  • Chorye Spoone (Bowie Baysox pitcher)-who joined Drew this morning to discuss his season in the O’s system
  • Orlando Alzugary (WQAM Miami)-who previewed the Miami Dolphins as we continue to preview AFC East teams this week in our look at the Baltimore Ravens’ schedule
  • Purple reports from Westminster with Luke Jones; as well as sound from McDaniel College Tuesday with John Harbaugh, Jameel McClain and Tom Zbikowski
  • Chris Chester (Ravens OL)-who joined Thyrl Nelson following practice Tuesday
  • Ken Singleton (YES Network)-who discussed the anniversary of Cal’s debut and some New York Yankees baseball with Rex Tuesday
  • Ryan Couture (Strikeforce fighter, son of Randy Couture) and Reed Harris (WEC General Manager)-who both joined Thyrl Nelson and John Rallo Tuesday during “The MMA Report”

It’s all there in the Audio Vault, meaning once again you have your day taken care of for you. As always, you’re welcome.

6. WNST.net’s Luke Jones says Chris Carr, Jared Gaither likely to miss Ravens preseason opener tomorrow night vs. Carolina Panthers

We still don’t know about some of the other question marks on the roster, including Fabian Washington-who could be sat to protect him from the M&T Bank Stadium turf.

If Washington & Carr can’t play, it would be likely that Travis Fisher and Cary Williams would start. Wow.

They could still go out and make an acquisition. For example, I believe Paulina Stanek is available. (Thanks Don Chavez!)

stanek

7. National Football Post’s Aaron Wilson says Domonique Foxworth underwent knee surgery Tuesday performed by Dr. James Andrews

That’s right, the ugliest name in all of sports medicine-which also so happens to be one of the best.

It’s a long road back from an ACL tear-but there’s no question in my mind that Domonique can handle it both mentally and physically. Because of the timing of it, he should be in good shape to be back in time for Training Camp next season.

In the meantime…umm…does he maybe have a cousin who can come play for the Ravens???

8. BaltimoreRavens.com’s Ryan Mink says Shayne Graham, Billy Cundiff to alternate kicks tomorrow night

And before we move on from the Ravens, a couple of things:

-Training Camp is CLOSED to the public (and to the media) today, so if you head up to Carroll County-a trip to Chick-Fil-A will be about your only option. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. Luke Jones will still be checking in throughout the day with Thyrl Nelson and Rex Snider today on AM1570 WNST as we prepare for the Ravens’ preseason opener tomorrow night.

-This morning’s “Training Camp Top 5″ was “If you were to get in a fight with Pittsburgh Steelers fans in the upper deck at Heinz Field, which current or former Ravens would you want on your side?”

Here’s my list:

  1. Orlando Brown
  2. Steve McNair
  3. Bart Scott
  4. Tom Zbikowski
  5. Arthur Jones

Here’s Drew’s list:

  1. Rex Ryan
  2. Kelly Gregg
  3. Ray Lewis
  4. Jarret Johnson
  5. Frank Walker

And via Twitter (follow us @WNST), here’s Nestor Aparicio’s list…

  1. Orlando Brown
  2. Bob Sapp
  3. Sam Adams
  4. James Trapp
  5. Ray Lewis

9. D1scourse’s Patrick Stevens says Terrapins De’Onte Arnett, Taylor Watson to miss Training Camp in College Park

The Terps held their football Media Day yesterday at Byrd Stadium, and you will be able to hear from plenty of players (including Jamarr Robinson, Da’Rel Scott, Alex Wujciak, Poly’s LaQuan Williams, Antwine Perez, Torrey Smith and more) via WNSTv in the next few days/weeks.

It was a slightly awkward day at Media Day yesterday, as the cloud of last year’s 2-10 record and the uncertainty surrounding Ralph Friedgen and James Franklin (the man tabbed to be the program’s next head coach) remains. It will remain that way until (unless?) Maryland turns things around this season.

The other news to come out of Media Day was that LB Avery Murray has left the team for personal reasons, and Zach Kerr & Ronnie Tyler are still in summer school.

Patrick and I discuss Maryland’s O-Line, preview North Carolina and North Carolina State; and get into a spirited discussion regarding Navy football in this week’s “D1scast”-which you can hear now in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault.

10. LA Times’ Chris Dufresne names Navy 24th best team in country

What Patrick and I discussed yesterday surrounded the nature that this is CLEARLY the best team in Annapolis since maybe as far back as the Roger Staubach era; but all of the positive feelings could go away should Ken Niumatalolo’s Midshipmen lose just the season opener against Maryland.

Their schedule doesn’t allow for them to make too much noise the rest of the way (they face other ACC bottom-feeders like Duke and Wake Forest as well as a Notre Dame team that may or may not be a factor in the BCS this season). Should they suffer an early costly loss, it will be hard to maintain a Top 25 (or Top 25-range) status.

That being said, this is a FANTASTIC problem for the Mids to have.

You know who won’t have trouble staying in the Top 25 this season? Sophie Reade. (Thanks Guyism!)

sophie

And finally, I leave you with this.

I named “The Greatest Song of All Time This Week” earlier this week on Facebook (you can add me as a friend-just search for “Glenn Clark” and add the goofy looking guy sipping Orange Kool-Aid because he lost a bet to Ed in Park Heights). “Return of the Mack” by Mark Morrison isn’t just A comeback song, it is THE comeback song…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uB1D9wWxd2w[/youtube]

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Thursday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Thursday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 15 July 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Thursday-

It’s a Happy Thursday for me because Drew and I were discussing our (high school) alma maters this morning; and I found out some interesting things.

You may know that Drew graduated (reportedly) from Glen Burnie High School. What you may NOT know is that there are a number of other significant former Gophers, including former Florida Marlins and Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Tony Saunders (who was on with Rex Snider yesterday here at AM1570 WNST); Kansas City Chiefs OT Branden Albert and singer Toni Braxton.

I am a proud Perry Hall High School graduate, and if you check our Wikipedia page; we have plenty of notable alumni as well. Former Delegates Alfred Redmer and James Ports; Tonja Walker from “One Life to Live” and “General Hospital”; and CNN’s Reggie Aqui. Oh, and there’s another one…Craig M Horlacher. Not familiar with Craig Horlacher? Let’s see what Wikipedia says about Craig…

“Craig M Horlacher, (GUINESS) Largest weiner size ever recorded

Let’s go Gators!

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. The AP’s David Ginsburg says Cal Ripken may join Orioles in part time advisory role, then transition to full time position after son Ryan Ripken graduates

This is the first sort of “clarity” we’ve received about what exactly is being considered by the Iron Man, Andy MacPhail and Peter Angelos. This is a logical role, although the question of what exactly Cal would be “advising” still comes to mind.

The easy answer would be “personnel”, as despite Cal’s incredible business accumen, I doubt he’s getting involved with the organization to give his ideas for how MASN can help market Adam Jones.

An organization would Cal Ripken involved for the advice he can offer to baseball players and regarding baseball players. He has value in Sarasota offering advice about fielding and staying healthy (Felix Pie should be the first player he talks to), but he also has value in the Warehouse telling Andy MacPhail “you know, I just don’t think Garrett Atkins fits the bill for what we’re looking for.”

Of course, now we’re entering the potential world of having “too many chefs in the kitchen.” Andy MacPhail is responsible for baseball decisions; but no one REALLY believes Peter Angelos has completely removed himself from that area. The organization is set to hire Buck Showalter as manager, and EVERYONE who knows ANYTHING about Buck Showalter has confirmed that he is going to have to have a hand in baseball and personnel decisions, if not more than that.

Now there’s a chance Cal Ripken joins that group.

Look, I don’t think ANYTHING bad can come from having Cal involved with the organization; and clearly they can use as much help as they can get in the baseball operations department. But this could end up being a combustible situation.

Of course, when you’re 29-59 it’s certainly worth trying.

2. WNST.net’s Jay Trucker says former Birds closer George Sherrill placed on waivers by Los Angeles Dodgers

Jay points out in his column that MacPhail deserves some credit for “selling high” with Sherrill. I had no problem myself with the trade-as it appeared that the team got two reasonable prospects back in Josh Bell and Steve Johnson.

If we’re being completely fair though, Bell and/or Johnson need to produce at the big league level for us to TRULY say this was a good trade. Otherwise, it was a trade that cost the team a closer ahead of an annual tailspin.

As far as those who think the Orioles should try to re-acquire Sherrill for the 2nd half of the season are concerned, well….okay. Sherrill may be well served by returning to a no-pressure role in Charm City (maybe a 7th inning role); but I wouldn’t be in a rush to run out and bring back “Flat Breezy.”

As far as whether or not I thought George Sherrill would ulimately struggle at Chavez Revine?

“Never a doubt George, never a doubt.”

3. MLB.com’s Brittany Ghiroli says O’s will spend 2nd half trying to avoid worst record in franchise history

I really don’t want to think about this.

In fact, instead of thinking about this, let’s think about Rosie Jones. (Thanks Guyism!)

rosiejones

4. The Sun’s Dean Jones Jr. says Steve Bumbry homered for Delmarva Shorebirds on farm

Before we move on from the Orioles, a couple of things…

-After missing Mike Gonzalez yesterday, we missed Billy Rowell this morning as well. Damn. BUT-if you missed Rich Dubroff from the Carroll County Times or Golf.com/SI’s David Dusek live from the British Open at St. Andrew’s with Drew Forrester this morning-make sure you check it out today in the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net.

-I found out this morning Sidney Ponson retired from professional baseball. Is this news? Did we know this before? How did I miss this? So long “Sir Sid”…we’ll always have…the memories???

5. National Football Post’s Joe Fortenbaugh says addition of Anquan Boldin means Ravens ‘have Super Bowl contender written all over them’

Which is about the most common theme I can think of when it comes to this football team.

The Ravens BEFORE acquiring Anquan Boldin were a team that was very good and had a chance to compete to win the AFC North. The Ravens AFTER acquiring Anquan Boldin are a team that has a REAL chance to get to Dallas for the Super Bowl.

Like I keep saying, just because they’re a Super Bowl CONTENDER doesn’t mean they’ll WIN the Super Bowl. The Cincinnati Bengals and New York Jets are Super Bowl CONTENDERS as well.

This is the part where I’m supposed to say “that’s why they play the games.”

6. The Sun’s Jamison Hensley says Ravens report fans have suffered injuries in Westminster

Which doesn’t surprise me at ALL. We’ve all seen it. It doesn’t mean the Ravens came up with a perfect policy to fix the problem (Edit from GMC: I think it’s far from it), but fan behavior and unruly crowds HAVE been a problem at McDaniel College. That’s really not arguable.

Now, if Brooke Erickson comes to Training Camp next year, I don’t care what policy is in place. There’s going to be trouble with unruly crowds (Thanks COED Magazine via Busted Coverage!)…

erickson

7. BaltimoreRavens.com’s Mike Duffy says John Beck expects ‘battle’ for QB job in Training Camp

Which is something we really haven’t discussed much.

When the Ravens acquired Marc Bulger, it was so widely assumed that Troy Smith would be dealt that we basically just started putting together a 53 man roster without including him.

But with the Philadelphia Eagles apparently likely to hold on to Michael Vick; the one realistic trade scenario that was presented appears to be gone.

The Ravens will NOT just be giving Troy Smith away, no matter how quickly some fans would like to see him go. If he isn’t traded, he and Beck will be set for a battle for the #3 QB job…a battle that Smith would CLEARLY be the favorite to win.

It isn’t popular necessarily, but it’s reality. Troy Smith might not LIKE being the team’s 3rd QB-but he might not have a choice. It might be the only job available.

And Troy Smith might very well be the best option for the Ravens as a 3rd QB.

We’ll have to wait and see what quarterbacks get hurt between now and Week 1. That would clearly impact where Smith could possibly end up.

8. ABC2′s Tia Craddock says Michael Phelps gave Baltimore City summer school students free swim lessons

Like I said yesterday, I think this is a great thing. I have said for some time that Phelps should be more visible with his charity and community involvement here in Baltimore; as he is likely the most recognized Baltimorean worldwide.

But with no offense to Michael-if I had my choice; I’d probably prefer to get my swim lessons from Lisa Angeline (Thanks NextRound.net via Uproxx!)…

lisaa

9. D1scrouse’s Patrick Stevens says Navy QB Ricky Dobbs named to Davey O’Brien Award watch list

Some of my feelings towards Ricky Dobbs are similar to my feelings towards former Morgan State Bears guard Reggie Holmes. I just really enjoy watching some college athletes-and Ricky Dobbs is ABSOLUTELY one of them.

There’s a new @DobbsForHeisman Twitter account that is pretty awesome. Not quite as awesome as getting a response from the Old Spice guy on YouTube, but it’s still pretty good…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CijzuweLK4I[/youtube]

And by the way, Patrick and I posted a new D1scast this week discussing his preseason Top 25 Football poll, the new ACC TV deal, and why hitting “Reply All” isn’t always a great idea. Make sure you head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault to check it out!

10. Washington Post’s Steve Yanda says Maryland, Texas in negotiations for future football series

I understand that the Terps will make a bunch of money from this series-and that’s important. But as I said on Twitter last night (follow us @WNST), it offers NOTHING football-wise. It’s a bit of a no-win; and I’m not sure how many recruits will be overly impressed by watching the Terrapins get pummeled by 35 points by the Longhorns at FedEx Field.

Now, playing a game in Austin (or Dallas, or Houston, or San Antonio) WILL get the next Maryland football coach (be it James Franklin or whoever else) in front of recruits in The Lone Star State. That IS a good thing.

And as I mentioned before, money is a factor. Cue AC/DC….

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Je7MqES4Wfk[/youtube]

And finally, I leave you with this.

I get a lot of questions about some of the music that’s played on the show. I figured I’d share a couple of the songs I get a particular number of questions about. One is “French Navy” by Camera Obscura…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O3CkfvYMCWM[/youtube]

Another is “I Just Want the Girl in the Blue Dress to Keep On Dancing” by Mike Doughty. At least the title isn’t too long…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A9GzLOk52Wo[/youtube]

If you want to know about anything else we play on the show, feel free to let me know.

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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Tuesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

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Tuesday Morning’s Crabs and Beer

Posted on 06 July 2010 by Glenn Clark

Happy Tuesday!

It’s a Happy Tuesday for me because I’m still basking in a 4th of July weekend trip to Chicago. If you missed any of my very important updates via Twitter/Twitpic (follow us @WNST), here are the most significant highlights…

I was in the Philadelphia airport Saturday morning preparing to fly when I wandered into the closest “Hudson News” stand I could find. I picked up the ProFootballTalk.com/NBC Sports NFL season preview, and flipped to the Baltimore Ravens section to see what I would find. I was a BIT surprised…

pft

I forwarded that picture to my parents…but I’m not sure they were impressed. In fact, I think the response was “when are you going to get a real job?”

When I finally got settled in the Windy City Saturday afternoon; our first stop was an early dinner at Lou Malnati’s. I was a little confused as to why we needed to get to dinner no later than 5pm…right up until I saw maybe 100 folks waiting in line for deep dish pizza after we had been there for a few minutes. We ordered a Chicago-Style Classic and a 312 Brew from Goose Island Brewing Company. I wasn’t disappointed in either…not even a little bit.

malnatis

We then hit the Hancock Tower. Apparently the Sears Tower is bigger, but their observatory isn’t as far up as the one at the Hancock. I have no comment, as math was never something I was particularly good at. What I do know is that this view was pretty freaking cool…

chicago

Saturday night was a stop at the Second City comedy club. If you’re not familiar, this is the improv factory that produced the likes of Chris Farley, John Belushi, John Candy, Gilda Radner, Steve Carrell, Tina Fey and the majority of the current/former stars of SNL. Sadly, I didn’t get any pictures. My bad.

I thought the purpose of going to Taste of Chicago this weekend was to see Robert Randolph and The Family Band Sunday afternoon. While that was still the major highlight; I knew my experience in Grant Park (you’ll remember Grant Park was the large area where Barack Obama made his acceptance speech on Election Night in 2008) was going to be outstanding when this was the image that greeted me…

tasteofchicago

And that was BEFORE I hit the Harry Caray’s booth. I’ve had potato chips before, but I’ve never had THESE…

chips

These ended up getting some cajun seasoning and hot sauce as well; and were REALLY.FREAKING.GOOD. Another highlight? The watermelon at the Dominick’s stand was BIGGER THAN MY FREAKING HEAD…

watermelon

After wandering through Taste of Chicago for a few hours and adding on 4-6,000,000 calories; we hit up Millenium Park. The place has some really cool artwork, including this mirror-art thingy that probably has a much better name than what I’m giving it right now…

millenium

The Independence Day festivities wrapped up at Navy Pier, where I just so happened to bump into Ravens DT Brandon McKinney; who let me know that he had been cleared (back) to fully return to practice and would be ready to go when the team reports to McDaniel College for Training Camp.

Good news.

Good trip.

When it hits 104 today, I might go right back.

Let’s see what everyone has to say…

1. The AP says Kevin Millwood roughed up as Orioles lost shootout to Tigers in Motown

Because I mentioned Motown and I’m gonna be depressed by talking about the O’s, let’s start today with “I Want You Back” by the Jackson 5…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kTUiQzhA0Go[/youtube]

Speaking of which-Hey Kevin Millwood that started the season looking like a pitcher that might be able to get the Orioles something at the trade deadline: I WANT YOU BACK.

We’ll get back to Millwood shortly, as it wasn’t ONLY his fault yesterday. In fact, despite the fact that Millwood pitched only 1 inning, the Orioles actually came back to take the lead. Mark Hendrickson was particularly brutal after that, and the nine runs the Orioles managed to score didn’t much matter-although it is nice to see Jake Fox get another home run for a first baseman.

Geez…I’m excited about Jake Fox. What’s next? Getting excited about an indoor football game?

(Edit from GMC: I’m VERY excited for Saturday night’s AIFA Eastern Conference Championship Game between the Baltimore Mariners and Harrisburg Stampede at 1st Mariner Arena. I’ve always been an exception to the rules though.)

2. The AP/WNST.net offer numerical evidence of loss

Here’s the thing. How could these teams have combined for 31 hits without Nick Markakis getting A SINGLE ONE OF THEM?!?!?!?

It puzzles me.

It would be like Kelly Brook posing for Ultimo Lingerie and me not posting pictures! (Thanks, Tim D!)

kellybrook

3. The Sun’s Jeff Zrebiec says Birds have talked to Buck Showalter again, but he has not been offered job

But everyone seems to agree that he has moved past Eric Wedge and emerged as the front-runner. With no offense to Showalter, Wedge or anyone else involved in the process; this isn’t exactly like being the frontrunner in the Kentucky Derby. This is probably a little more like being the frontrunner in a race called by Rick from Reisterstown.

I have no idea what to make of this whole managerial search. It seemed like the team would be wise to let Juan Samuel finish things out this season and then make a hire after going through the full process in the offseason. Now it looks like they’re going to hire “The Best of What’s Around” (I’m going to see Dave Matthews Band Friday night, please forgive me) now.

I’d be surprised, but this is the Orioles we’re talking about. But don’t worry, Andy MacPhail is in charge and NOT Peter Angelos. Peter Angelos is totally out of the process, remember?

Remember?

Meanwhile-while the other candidates were busy being managerial candidates; Rick Dempsey was singing with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. God bless him…

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n2nBFL76274[/youtube]

4. MLB.com’s Brittany Ghiroli says injury concerns could land Millwood on DL

Well……FRICK.

The Birds were NEVER going to fleece a team in a Kevin Millwood trade before July 31; but there was at least a hope that they could get something more than the Chris Ray they gave up for him…or a player that had a CHANCE to be more than Chris Ray.

Given the way he’s fallen off the face of the planet and now could end up on the DL, hopes of that are starting to slim.

Millwood was the team’s best chance to get SOMETHING before the Trade Deadline. Ty Wigginton, Miguel Tejada, Luke Scott, Will Ohman, Cesar Izturis and even Hendrickson could all be dealt, but none are being dealt for anything significant. Tejada is the team’s 2nd best hope-but Tejada now says he wants to stick around in Charm City.

With no offense to Miguel, but I doubt that’s because he’s EXCITED about losing in Baltimore. My guess is that it’s because he realizes he’s unlikely to be an every day player for a team with a real chance at winning the World Series.

That’s where we are.

5. Virginian-Pilot says Chris Tillman brilliant in 1 hit performance for Norfolk Tides in win over Charlotte Knights on farm

Of course, with Tillman throwing another gem (this follows up on his earlier no hitter this season) at AAA; there will be more clamoring for Tillman to get called up. Should Kevin Millwood end up on the DL, there’s almost no chance he DOESN’T get called up.

I don’t think any of us will be as excited about it this time, but the organization will eventually have to find out if Tillman is anything more than a 4A guy.

Before we move on from the Orioles, a reminder that they’re back in action tonight against the Detroit Tigers again at Comerica Park. First pitch on MASN between Jake Arrieta and Armando Galarraga is at 7:05pm.

Look…there’s nothing else on. Not even “Glee.” Just watch the game. None of the rest of us want to do it either, we just don’t have much of a choice.

6. ABC2′s Christian Shaffer says Mt. Carmel basketball star John Crowder murdered in Baltimore

Now we enter the part of Crabs and Beer today that I absolutely like the least. This is a TERRIBLY tragic tale in a city full of terribly tragic tales.

This one will hit home, especially considering there was a chance Crowder could have ended up getting a scholarship from Gary Williams and playing in College Park.

No matter where his life WAS going, it appears as though he hung out with some guys that were less than savory. Of course, all of the rest of us have hung out with some less than desirables ourselves at one point or another.

My heart goes out to John Crowder’s family and friends, as well as everyone surrounding the athletic department at Mt. Carmel.

There’s a bigger problem in Baltimore…that much we know for sure.

7. National Football Post’s Aaron Wilson says former Ravens QB Steve McNair remembered Sunday on anniversary of death

I was wandering around Grant Park Sunday in Chi-Town when I saw someone approaching me wearing a Ravens jersey. Excited, I yelled out “Go Ravens!”

I didn’t get the response I was looking for.

The young man was wearing a Steve McNair jersey, and was not a Ravens fan as much as he was honoring a great NFL player on the anniversary of his murder.

For such an open and shut case, it feels as though little closure has come in the year since McNair’s death. I was unmoved by CBS’ investigation last fall that insinuated the Nashville police hadn’t been as thorough in their investigation as they should have been.

Armen Keteyian’s was chocked full of friends of Sahel Kazemi saying she “wasn’t a violent person” and “didn’t have this in her.” I’m not sure how many friends and family members of murder suspects/convicted murderers usually say “Yeah, I always assumed this would happen.”

There isn’t much more to be said, other than very clearly Steve McNair is still missed not only in Baltimore and Nashville, but also throughout the country.

Thus ends the sad part of today’s Crabs and Beer. Back to sports and hot chicks…

8. BaltimoreRavens.com’s Ryan Mink says ’10 offseason amongst best in Ravens history

I don’t disagree with this AT ALL. In fact, it could end up being THE greatest offseason in franchise history if Anquan Boldin helps hoist the Vince Lombari Trophy in Dallas in the winter.

Clearly the moves made before the Super Bowl win have to be viewed as the best offseason in franchise history; but I’m not sure they’ve ever made a more PERFECT move than acquiring a player like Boldin this year.

They still COULD make it the best offseason in franchise history with one simple move. Just go get Kim Feenstra. (Thanks FHM/Guyism!)

feenstra

9. The Sun’s Don Markus says NCAA-sanctioned Baltimore Summer League opens tonight at Reitz Arena

This is awesome. Amongst the players who are committed to playing in this event are Morgan State’s Kevin Thompson, Missouri’s Kimmie English and Ricky Harris-who just finished his career at UMass. The event is VERY similar to the Kenner League at Georgetown, with current and former college standouts from Baltimore highlighting the field.

Thayne Gould put the entire event together at Loyola, he joined Drew Forrester this morning on “The Morning Reaction” on AM1570 WNST. If you missed it, make sure you head over to the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault today to check it out.

Will Carroll (Baseball Prospectus) also joined Drew to go around Major League Baseball, and Jason La Canfora of the NFL Network went not only around football-but also around the World Cup with Drew as well. We also replayed Friday’s interview with Ed Reed (we heard someone else was having him on 5 days later…); if you missed ANY of that, check it out in the Audio Vault as well.

10. Athlon Sports’ Eric Prisbell says 2010 likely final stand for Ralph Friedgen

There’s simply no question about that. If the Terps don’t show marked improvement (even 7-5 might not be enough for a new athletic director), things are set to change in College Park. The decision to keep Ralph and continue the succession plan with James Franklin was Debbie Yow’s. Another Athletic Director could be given more flexibility to go in another direction.

If there IS a coaching search in the future, I would like to be the first to suggest that the Terrapins consider Sheridyn Fisher… (Thanks Busted Coverage/Coed Magazine!)

sheridyn

And finally, I leave you with this.

While I’m frustrated that he didn’t play it Sunday afternoon; it’s not going to keep me from naming Robert Randolph’s “Walk Don’t Walk” this week’s “The Greatest Song of All Time This Week.” If you haven’t picked up the new disc “We Walk This Road” yet, you’re only hurting yourself.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R3UOE9Sa6dw[/youtube]

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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