It’s a happy Tuesday for me (DESPITE staying up until 3am just to see Andy Roddick collapse again in the 5th set) because we had a great night at Hill Field House last night watching Morgan State paste UMES. The Morgan State band is always one of the highlights of a trip to see the Bears, and last night was no different. I didn’t get any new video of the band, but their highlight last night was a version of “Lollipop” by Lil’ Wayne. Thanks to the guy who filmed them doing it during football season….
Let’s see what everyone has to say….
1. Pro Football Talk/NBC Sports’ Mike Florio reports former Patriots DC Dean Pees to become new Ravens LB Coach
Pees has a track record as a capable coach, even if his stint as Pats DC wasn’t as successful as fans in New England had hoped for. I think Pees would be a very nice addition to this Ravens staff, whether or not he is just taking the job in hopes of getting the old “Ray Lewis rub” that a number of coaches have gotten.
Pees’ link to John Harbaugh is via Miami (Ohio) University, where Harbaugh played CB under Pees as defensive coordinator. So far, I have found no link between either coach and Wally Szczerbiak, but I wish there was….
2. WNST.net’s Glenn Clark says Vic Fangio could still have future with Ravens even if Pees hired to coach LB’s
I saw a lot of comments yesterday like “It’s a shame Vic Fangio had to learn he was getting fired this way”, but I just don’t know that we can assume that. Fangio came to this team in an undefined defensive assistant role, and I think it is safe to think that he might stay on in a defensive assistant role, with a focus on quality control.
For a team that struggled with small situations last year (need we relive the timeout disasters, review mistakes and the loss of 5 yards on a ball spot blunder), maybe having a single coach focused directly on quality control would be a good idea.
Remember, this is just me speculating. But Fangio is a Harbaugh guy, and I just don’t see him being given his walking papers to make way for Dean Pees. Something tells me this was worked out beforehand.
3. Chicago Tribune’s Vaughn McClure says Hue Jackson won’t interview with Bears
According to information obtained by WNST this morning, we expect Jackson to accept the Offensive Coordinator job with the Raiders.
And why not?
The Raiders have JaMarcus Russell, Chaz Schilens and Al Davis!
Best of luck to Hue Jackson. I’m just not certain this is a great move for him.
I wouldn’t be surprised at all if Drew’s speculation surrounding Al Saunders moving into Jackson’s role ended up being accurate, either.
4. Ravens Official Site’s Mike Duffy says team would be best to keep Derrick Mason
I understand Duff’s thought process here. With a likely uncapped year, the “Final 8” rules will really hurt Ozzie Newsome’s pursuit of a legitimate playmaker at WR. With that in mind, Mason is a known commodity who has constantly put up numbers and been a reliable target right here in Charm City.
It makes sense.
Problem is, Derrick has to be willing to accept that he’s not getting the typical “big money” deal that many #1 wideouts would get. He also has to be willing to accept that the team wants to upgrade at WR, bringing in a new #1 threat that will likely take away from the number of times Joe Flacco goes to Mason.
I don’t necessarily think bringing back Derrick Mason would be a bad idea. In fact, I think the Ravens could be well served to have him for another season as they try to push towards a Super Bowl. But I don’t think it will be as easy as saying “we want you back.”
Which makes the preparation the Ravens did last week in Orlando and this week at the Senior Bowl all the more important. This team is going to have to find some NFL-ready players in April’s Draft, as they will be hard pressed to keep all of the guys facing free agency, and they are a bit handcuffed by the Final 8 rules.
I couldn’t help but notice that Kyle Boller wasn’t on that list. He’s not an impact player per se, but isn’t he worth something?!?!?
6. Morgan State Official Site says Reggie Holmes, Troy Smith combined for 40 as Bears pasted UMES at Hill Field House
Just an overwhelming performance from Todd Bozeman’s crew last night. Troy Smith has really come on for them, responding after an incident in December that Todd Bozeman would only describe as a “transgression” postgame.
I guess you have to consider the fact that UMES was the opponent, but Frankie Allen has made improvements in Princess Anne, and the Hawks were coming off a win at Coppin State on Saturday. They had absolutely NOTHING to offer against Morgan last night.
The Bears return to action Saturday evening at Norfolk State, as they continue their quest for a perfect season in MEAC play. If you missed Todd Bozeman with Drew Forrester on “The Comcast Morning Show” this morning, check out the Audio Vault at WNST.net.
This was one of the Eagles’ best chances to make sure they got a win in conference play this season. They will be fighting to get a victory the rest of the way. They return to action Saturday afternoon at North Carolina A&T.
8. Maryland Official Site previews tonight’s ACC tilt with Miami at Comcast Center
It’s WAAAY too easy to say that the Terps shouldn’t lose to the ‘Canes tonight. We all know the Terps shouldn’t lose to the ‘Canes tonight. But there is certainly a danger to how well the Terrapins have been playing recently, as they need to remain focused. Frank Haith has had good success against Gary Williams, but usually with a more veteran team.
If I had to guess, I’d say 81-70 Maryland.
9. D1scourse’s Patrick Stevens says Jordan Williams excelling because he takes pride in playing with ‘back to basket’
I’m running out of adjectives to use to describe Jordan Williams-and his career is 18 games old.
As he progresses, this team can continue to go far this season. If he continues to improve during ACC play-the Sweet 16 aspirations this team had before the season could be very legitimate. If he levels off, this team will likely end up back on the NCAA Tournament bubble.
10. Frederick News-Post’s Stan Goldberg remembers former Maryland AD Jim Kehoe
I wish I had gotten to know Jim Kehoe before he passed away. He certainly did a tremendous job as Athletic Director at Maryland, and he was honored with a moment of silence before Saturday night’s win over NC State.
I’d like to add more here, I am just forced to admit that I don’t know a whole lot more about Jim than what you can read in Stan’s story.
11. The Sun’s Dan Connolly and Jeff Zrebiec say Jeremy Guthrie doesn’t think anything changes for him with Kevin Millwood joining staff
And other than not starting on Opening Day, he’s right. He will still have high expectations this season, and he will have to perform better than he did a season ago to remain a mainstay in an Orioles rotation with a lot of young pitchers coming up.
Here’s a more important question. When the Birds decided NOT to persue FA pitcher Brad Penny this offseason, were they aware he was dating Karina Smirnoff???
12. ESPN.com’s Eric Karabell says O’s lineup full of fantasy “sleepers”
He’s exactly right. This team is full of “sleepers.” If they all turn out to be rock stars, this team will be in good shape. If they turn out to be sleep-ing, they’ll be in trouble. But a lineup with Brian Roberts, Adam Jones, Nick Markakis, Miguel Tejada, Garrett Atkins, Matt Wieters, Nolan Reimold, Luke Scott and Cesar Izturis looks on paper like it might be credible.
At least if someone in that group turns out to be a power hitter.
And finally, I leave you with this.
I have NO IDEA how I missed this, but thank God it was directed back to me. Back when Bruce Springsteen was honored by the Kennedy Center, Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder did a version of the Boss’ outstanding tune “My City of Ruins”….
Apparently you can buy the song on iTunes to help some sort of charity. Maybe Haiti. Maybe cancer. I should’ve done more research here. Go buy the tune.
Talk to you tonight from College Park.
Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…..