The Rock Report

UPDATED!! Bruce Weber NOT Leaving Illinois for Oklahoma

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Some interesting news this morning of reports that Illinois men's basketball head coach Bruce Weber could be on the move to be the next head coach at Oklahoma.

(Per The Norman Transcript)

"A well-placed college basketball source told the Transcript on Wednesday night that Illinois coach Bruce Weber has emerged as a viable candidate and there appears to be mutual interest."

Of course once these reports surfaced, Bruce Weber responded via text message to the St. Louis Post Dispatch.

(Per St. Louis Post Dispatch)

"Weber responded in a text message to the Post-Dispatch after The Norman Transcript published an article that said Weber and Oklahoma appeared to have a mutual interest.

"Received interest calls from a few schools the last couple weeks,'' he wrote. "Other than that no real story or stories! Sorry!'"


Bruce Weber, who has been at Illinois the last eight seasons and led the Illini to the national championship game in 2005 and the NCAA Tournament in six of his eight seasons.  A record of 193-86 with a Big Ten conference record of 83-53 is Coach Bruce's tenure in Champaign.


Some conflicting tweets this morning from multiple sources with knowledge to the situation:

According to Steve Layman of NewsChannel 5 in Nashville, TN.....

(per twitter.com/stevelayman)

"I've hung back on this, but per multiple sources: Bruce Weber to be named next coach at Oklahoma.  According to multiple sources, there is a deal on the table for Bruce Weber to be the next coach at Oklahoma.  After failing to draw interest from Marquette's Buzz Williams or UNLV's Lon Kruger, OU's settled on Weber, who is frustrated at Illinois."

According to an old bio from his work at FOX23 in Tulsa, OK...Layman has the background to report on such a rumor.

"You can catch him in the studio anchoring Oklahoma's best each Saturday and Sunday or weekdays at a field or gym somewhere in Green Country.

Born and raised in Illinois, Steve comes to Fox 23 from WDWS-AM in Champaign, Illinois where he served as a sports radio talk show host and play-by-play announcer on the Illini Sports Network."

According to Dean Blevins of OKSPORTS.COM.....

"I was told ystrdy morn OU was hoping/planning 4 Fri press conf 2 name new coach. After striking out w/Buzz, appears 2 b BruceWeber, Illinois"


Could Bruce Weber be leaving Illinois?  Surely we will find out before the weekend is out.

-RoCk

John "Rock" Mamola is the Associate Producer of The Mully And Hanley Morning Show and Host of The Rock Report on 670AM WSCR The Score

You can follow Rock at Twitter.com/RockMamola

CATCH THE ROCK REPORT ON FRIDAY NIGHTS AT 10PM (CST) ON 670AM THE SCORE IN CHICAGO AND 670THESCORE.COM WORLDWIDE
 

UPDATE:  11:00am (cst)

The Chicago Tribune's Chris Hine Tweets The Following:

"Here's our update on Bruce Weber and Oklahoma. Weber reiterates what he said last night, "No story."

Here is a link to Hine's Story on ChicagoBreakingSports.com

Editorial Note:  I believe this is simply Bruce Weber trying to use a little leverage to try and get some sort of extension or more money from the University of Illinois.  With one of his best recruiting classes on the way in, this could be a way to get the big paycheck in case things do not work out with another hyped group of recruits. 

Keep in mind too that his colleague on the football side of matters got a nice 250K raise after going 7-6 last football season.  Maybe Weber is a little jealous of that, and feels he deserves some more money from the University.

 
UPDATE 11:10am (cst)

According to IlliniHQ.com - Bruce Weber STAYING at the University of Illinois.

"Illinois SID Kent Brown told media after this morning's football practice that the school would have an announcement later today indicating Bruce Weber would remain as basketball coach at Illinois."

LeBron James' Bathroom Stunt Unacceptable.....

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No athlete is above the game they play, especially one that has yet to do anything of significance in their respective sport.  That is what LeBron James fails to realize in his latest stint which occurred last night in his former home town of Cleveland.  Like any NBA game, the pre-game introductions went off without a problem.  Big lights, loud music and a raucous crowd waiting for their former hometown hero to return one more time to face the music he created with his "decision".   
 
The lights on and music rolling, the crowd welcomed back the self-anointed king with a rousing sound of boo's.....yet the King was fashionably late.  
 
Just the latest insult the King has thrown to his former minions in Cleveland.  Further proving that LeBron James does not care about anyone else besides LeBron James and LeBron James Incorporated.
 
Here is why I (like many who posted tweets to his @KingJames Twitter account) say LeBron James is a b***h.

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Everyone Wins With These NCAA Final Four....

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March Madness is in full effect.  You want to know how you can tell?  Look at your own bracket and compare it to the real thing.
 
Who in their right mind would have picked these final four teams in their bracket as the ones who would be standing tall headed to Houston, TX attempting to win college basketball's greatest prize?  Some may have picked UCONN and Kentucky based on their runs in their respective conference tournament championships.  Some could have picked Butler because of their unpredictable run last year and thought it could carry over to this season.  No one could have predicted the last team to enter the tournament field as one of the Final Four.
 
How many people even knew what VCU stands for?
 
While some may criticize the way the tournament was seeded or why certain teams got snubbed over others, the NCAA is sitting on a great finish to a mediocre tournament.

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VIDEO: Meet Your New Chicago Cubs PA Announcer: Andrew Belleson

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Today the Chicago Cubs announced that Arlington Heights native Andrew Belleson is the new Chicago Cubs PA announcer.  Below is the press release from the organization and Belleson's youtube video audition for the position.

Enjoy!

MEDIA ADVISORY
CHICAGO CUBS SELECT ANDREW BELLESON AS NEW WRIGLEY FIELD PUBLIC ADDRESS ANNOUNCER

MEDIA AVAILABILITY WITH BELLESON TODAY AT 4 P.M.

FRIDAY, MARCH 25, 2011

 

CHICAGO - The Chicago Cubs have selected Andrew Belleson as the new voice of Wrigley Field, culminating a three-week search that included 2,954 applications from 48 states and Canada submitted through CareerBuilder.com. Belleson arrived in Chicago today to finalize the deal and he will be available for on-camera interviews at Wrigley Field at 4 p.m. CDT (details below).

 

"On behalf of the Chicago Cubs, we would like to thank all 2,954 public address announcer candidates who applied for their dream job on CareerBuilder.com," said Wally Hayward, executive vice president, chief sales and marketing officer, Chicago Cubs. "It was a very difficult decision, as there were so many quality PA announcers who applied from across the country. After hosting two live auditions of finalists here at the ballpark, we have selected Andrew Belleson as the new voice of Wrigley Field and welcome him to the Chicago Cubs family."

 

Belleson held public address announcer and radio broadcast duties for the Rockford RiverHawks for five years. He began his broadcast career at age 15 with the RiverHawks, helping on a part-time basis during summers off from high school. 

 

The Arlington Heights native received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Radio/Television Broadcasting from Concordia University in River Forest, Ill. He played baseball at Concordia and helped build the sports department for the local college radio station, WCGR 88.5 FM, including broadcasting for football, basketball and baseball games.

 

A lifelong Cubs fan, Belleson grew up idolizing Harry Caray and has attended Cubs games since childhood.


Andrew Belleson's Youtube Audition





-RoCk

John "Rock" Mamola is the Associate Producer of The Mully And Hanley Morning Show and Host of The Rock Report on WSCR 670AM The Score.

You can follow Rock on Twitter at twitter.com/rockmamola

CATCH THE ROCK REPORT EVERY FRIDAY AT 10PM (CST) ON 670AM IN CHICAGO AND 670THESCORE.COM WORLDWIDE
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-RoCk

twitter.com/rockmamola
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Why Is Jay Cutler Not Being The Leader Of The Chicago Bears?

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Nothing is more irritating than waiting on millionaires and billionaires to figure out exactly how to divide a $9,000,000,000.00 pot of revenue.  With over 9% unemployment in the United States, the NFL (owners and players both) should feel ashamed of themselves for not figuring out a way to make a successful business continue on in this economic climate.  While there have been no training camp time or games missed as of yet, football is a 365 day a year sport which rolls on like a steamroller on the American sports landscape.
 
One of the effects of a NFL lockout is the fact that the players and coaches cannot organize workouts in the off season let alone even talk to one another.  Like many Chicago Bears fans, I was waiting to see exactly who would be the one to step up for the players and try to organize off season workouts with other members of the team.  
 
You would think the captains of the team (Urlacher, Peppers, Cutler, Kreutz, Mannelly) would be the ones to take the bull by the horns and get the ball moving on theses off season workouts.  Unfortunately we come to find out in today's Chicago Tribune (via Vaughn McClure) that free agent wide receiver Rashied Davis is the one organizing the workouts.
 
While we all remember the way the season ended for the Chicago Bears, how come Jay Cutler is not organizing these?

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The Rock Report: LIVE VIDEO CHAT FRIDAY 1PM (cst)

Check out the weekly LIVE VIDEO CHAT on The Rock Report

FRIDAY at 1pm (cst).....

Check back here or at twitter.com/rockmamola for the link to join in.

Everyone is welcome, all topics to be discussed.

NCAA, Chicago Bulls, Chicago Blackhawks, Chicago White Sox, Chicago Cubs, Chicago Bears, NFL Lockout.......and anything else on your mind!

Can't wait to see you there!

-RoCk

John "Rock" Mamola is the Associate Producer of The Mully And Hanley Morning Show and Host of The Rock Report on 670AM WSCR The Score

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Geno Auriemma Needs To Shut Up About Attendance Figures....

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One thing that I have never understood in my time working in sports media is why players/coaches/organizations fire back at their fans.  The relationship between a fan and his/her team is something special and should by no means become a burden.  My personal experience with the Chicago White Sox led by a displeasure of the direction of the franchise officially ended this past off season because of their lack of forward thinking.   
 
However while fans can pick and choose who they root for/root against, the same simply cannot be said about the opposite.  Collegiate and professional teams rely so much on their fan base financially that any criticism toward the fans is a fight that teams will never win.  If you insult the people who support your program/team through the good and the bad, it simply is the beginning of your personal end. 
 
Geno Auriemma is a seven time national champion as head coach of the University of Connecticut women's basketball program.  He has over 700 wins in his career and is the current leader among active coaching in career winning percentage (.861%).  Auriemma is a six time Naismith College Coach of the Year award winner and has led the UCONN women to four undefeated seasons in his 26 seasons as head coach including back to back perfect seasons in 2008 and 2009.
 
With all the success the UCONN women have had in his tenure as head coach, the last people "Geno" should be taking on are the fans of the UCONN lady Huskies.

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NFL Rules Changes On Kickoffs Open Pandora's Box....

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I have never seen a league adapt to outside pressures so much than the current day NFL.  For example the famous "tuck rule" established after the 2002 AFC Championship Game, or just this past off season when the new OT rules came into affect following an overtime loss to Brett Favre's Minnesota Vikings.  The biggest issue outside the current day NFL lockout is the increasing amount of concern about concussions in the sport of football.  
 
Remember this past season where the NFL increased punishment for what was once termed "devastating hits"?
 
While to longtime football fans and players these new regulations may seem like the NFL is going "soft" on the simple physical nature of the game, the NFL Competition Committee is not stopping there.  The NFL is proposing new changes to the game which would affect an entire phase of a team's offensive game.
 
Could it be the NFL Competition Committee fears the extinction of their game so much that the special teams phase of the game could be abolished?

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Jake Peavy Injury May Look Bad, But Could Be More Of A Blessing...

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What does winning the lotto, cheeseburger diets and Jake Peavy all have in common?   
   
Sometimes things are too good to be true.  
  
Yesterday the Chicago White Sox put out a statement that pitcher Jake Peavy is experiencing some right rotator cuff tendinitis, and has been since the early part of the month.  Jake Peavy is attempting to return to the White Sox starting rotation since he detached his latissimus dorsi muscle in his right shoulder on July 9th of last year.  This revelation comes after three straight weeks of the White Sox doctors and coaching staff saying that their 16 million dollar starting pitcher was "ahead of schedule" and on his way to a miraculous recovery.  
  
Then again this latest setback could be in fact a good thing, here is how. 
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Charlie Sheen Releases His #WINNING NCAA Bracket....

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The other day I posted LeBron James' bracket and some of his picks had me scratching my head.  For instance taking Louisville as one of his Final Four picks (of course eliminated yesterday) made no sense to me.

However with the surprises and buzzer beaters of the first day of the tournament, my bracket went to absolute hell as I finished the first true day of the tourney going 9-7.  President Barack Obama got 14 of 16 correct only missing out on Louisville and Michigan State.

However there is one bracket that I have yet to hear/see anyone put to the microscope and truly breakdown yet.  No ESPN specials, no personal website hits.....just pure #WINNING!

The creator of such terms as #TIGERBLOOD and #WINNING is none other than Charlie Sheen.  Between smoking crack and gulping down another pint of #TIGERBLOOD, he found time to fill out a bracket and here is what he came up with....

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-Rock

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White Sox Will Lose Their BIG Gamble On Early Attendance

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As spring officially begins on Sunday morning, the changing of season means that America's past time is right around the corner.  Opening day for the Major League Baseball season is now two weeks away and camps in Arizona and Florida are beginning to trim their rosters down to the final 25.  As each hour passes in the countdown to first pitch, excitement continues to build as fans look forward to a new season and a fresh start for their respective team.   
 
The 2011 Chicago White Sox are what they have termed "All In".  With the off season addition of slugger Adam Dunn and re-signing veterans Paul Konerko and AJ Pierzynski, the White Sox could possibly have the best assembled roster in the American League Central.  To have a roster of that caliber, the White Sox have had to raise their payroll to a record high 125 million dollars.
 
While the White Sox front office is making a large investment in a team that has only made one playoff appearance since winning the 2005 World Series, their logic on how to justify this record payroll is somewhat skewed.  How can the Chicago White Sox gamble on their own fans to support the reasoning behind this risky financial decision?

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Lebron James Releases His Official NCAA Tournament Bracket......

Check out LeBron James 2011 NCAA March Madness bracket (via LeBronJames.com)

While I have some of the same upsets as he does, here is what stands out to me.

* He believes in Rick Pitino a little too much for my taste.
* Taking his most recent Florida love to the Elite Eight is a big mistake
* Like most experts, he picks three #1 seeds to make the Final Four....including the school/coach he said he would loved to have played for if he attended college.


Take a look what the face of the Miami Hate picks are for March Madness 2011!

-RoCk

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(Click On Image To Enlarge)

Check out Rock Mamola's official NCAA bracket here

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Three March Madness Bracket Tips From An "Amateur" Expert.....

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There are certain things in life that we will never claim to be.  While we obey most of the laws of the land, are we law-abiding citizens if we have a little case of lead foot?  Very few men will consider themselves culinary experts because they make one hell of a sloppy joe.    
 
I will never admit to be an expert on March Madness.  Then again, this time of year....who really is? 
 
For the first time ever, you will have only one day to fill out your bracket of 68 teams and choose what team will embrace that "One Shining Moment".  With the sure fact that most people who fill out a bracket does not watch a lot of regular season college basketball, we each have our own unique way of picking the games.  Some rely on the national experts since they are the few souls that watch every conference and every team in the NCAA tournament.  Some rely on what our friends and co-workers have picked already.  Others choose the more fun "whose mascot would win in a fight" method.  There simply is no correct way to go about filling out your field of 68, because the odds of a perfect bracket are astounding.  In fact (according to Forbes.com), after the play-in games starting tomorrow (TUES), there are 9,223,372,036,854,775,808 possible brackets. 
 
While I am not any sort of expert of the college game, here are three tips I always go by when picking my bracket.

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Blackhawks Visit With Obama Overshadowed By Bad Blood??

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The greatest honor any American citizen can have is to be celebrated at The White House.  Lately it has become common place that professional and college sports teams that win championships or accomplish something which The White House deems honorable get their day in the sunshine by dressing up and heading down to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.   
 
This Friday the defending Stanley Cup Champion Chicago Blackhawks get the rare opportunity to meet the leader of the free world face to face.  Of course with President Barack Obama being from Chicago, you can expect some jokes boasting about his hometown hockey club on top of a jersey to be presented to the President.  The team will surely get a tour of the Oval Office, photos that will mark numerous sports and news websites, and a street hockey workout on the South Lawn of The White House.  Just another lame way to show people how passionate President Barack Obama is about sports.  Even the ones he does not watch on a regular basis.  Standard operating procedure.
 
However the story leading up to the Blackhawks visiting The White House will not be who is attending, but who is not attending.  With the roster turnover the Blackhawks have had to face in the past six months, could this day in Washington reveal some hidden bad blood between the organization and their former players?

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Jim Tressel Suspended For Doing His Job....

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You have to wonder sometimes why have rules to begin with because we all break them.  For instance driving home today on Lake Shore Drive where the speed limit is 40 MPH, I was easily breaking a law by surpassing the limit to keep up with traffic.  Those who prefer transportation by foot in the city for sure have began to cross a street without being signaled to in the first place.  Rules are set only because without them, there would be chaos....we think.
 
College athletics is no different from real life in that the rules that are set are routinely broken.  The latest example of such is the suspension of Ohio State (sorry....THE OHIO STATE) University's head football coach Jim Tressel.  Tressel was suspended two regular season games by the university for failing to disclose some e-mails he received about student-athletes who sold memorabilia.  This latest suspension follows five game suspensions handed out by the NCAA to five Ohio State football players who received improper benefits from a tattoo parlor.  Those to-be-suspended players of course were allowed to play in this past January's Sugar Bowl in which Ohio State defeated Arkansas 31-26.  
 
While the debate has gone on for several years now, Tressel's admission of disclosing possible evidence of a violation of NCAA rules is just the latest example of why NCAA athletes should be paid.  What Tressel did may have violated the rules of the NCAA, but what he did was in the best interests of what matters to both himself and Ohio State.
 
The success of the program.

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Could These Chicago Bulls Win An NBA Title This Soon?

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Who does not love a good surprise?  A Christmas present that was totally unexpected.  A new job possibility opening.  A basketball team that exceeds expectations.
 
OK, so maybe some thought the Chicago Bulls would be this good this quick.  Not this blogger.  
 
At 43-18, the Chicago Bulls currently stand as the second best team in the NBA's Eastern Conference while eclipsing their win totals of each the last two playoffs seasons.  By sweeping their season series with the Miami Heat yesterday winning nine of their last 11 games, the Chicago Bulls made a statement in South Beach.  Not necessarily to the local media contingent, but to the national one.  By defeating the big three for the third and final time this regular season, critics are starting to take notice that the Bulls could indeed be a legit contender for the Eastern Conference crown.
 
Wait a second......what did I just say?  
 
Is it too early to believe that this Bulls team could win a NBA title this soon?

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Fights Must Stay In Hockey For Good Of The Sport....

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Evolution affects everything including sports.  Remember when dunks were not allowed and steroids were not technically illegal in baseball? How about the three point line in the NBA and football was played with leather helmets.  Sports are like everything else in life, they change with the times.  Although change is not always welcomed and many people fear it, most of the time through change the product becomes better.    

  

For generations fighting in the sport of hockey has been a hot topic of discussion when it comes the sport evolving.  More than any of the four major sports, hockey has seen more change since its inception in the early 19th century.  Remember when goalies used not to wear masks?  How about the two line pass?  The sport of hockey has not only seen the most change since its inception, but even today constantly embraces new ideas to improve the game.    

  

If the NHL wanted to rid itself of fighting much like the regular season ties, it would be making a huge mistake.

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LIVE CHAT: The Rock Report "No Bias No Bull" Chat

Thanx to all who participated in today's live chat!

We will try to do this sometime soon!

-RoCk

twitter.com/rockmamola

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Chicago Bulls Stand Pat At NBA Trade Deadline.....

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The last drop of sand has fallen in the hourglass of the NBA trade deadline, and the 38-17 Chicago Bulls decided to stand pat.  With rumored deals involving names from Houston's Courtney Lee to Memphis' OJ Mayo, the Chicago Bulls who are in need of more offense from the shooting guard position choose that team chemistry is more important than an improvement on the offensive end of the ball. 

Without a doubt, the Chicago Bulls are the most surprising team in the Eastern Conference.  After an off season where they decided to use the money they freed up for the likes of LeBron James and built a team with it, Gar Forman and John Paxson once again make the right moves...this time by doing nothing.  The Chicago Bulls are already one of the best teams in the NBA on the defensive side of the ball.  Adding another new body to a team whose best three players have only played eleven games together would totally destroy any chances of the starting five having any on the court chemistry before the playoffs arrive.

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LIVE CHAT REMINDER: Friday 2-25-2011 2pm Central


**The Rock Report "No Bias No Bull" LIVE CHAT**

Looking forward to chatting live with all the Rock Report readers/listeners/tweeps/etc. THIS FRIDAY at 2PM on The Rock Report on ChicagoNow.com

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Talk to you on Friday

-Rock

John "Rock" Mamola is the Associate Producer of The Mully And Hanley Morning Show and HOST of The Rock Report on WSCR 670AM The Score.

You can follow The Mully And Hanley Morning Show at twitter.com/mullyhanley

You can follow Rock at twitter.com/RockMamola

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Kenny Williams States His Crusade To Save Baseball....

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Welcome to my first post on the Chicago White Sox for the 2011 MLB season.  Now I know in the past many readers/tweeters/fellow ChicagoNow bloggers and some columnists in town may believe that I have a certain slant towards the franchise that I used to call my own.  As a White Sox fan for almost 30 years I was fed up with the same theory when it came to the direction of the ball club.  I felt the White Sox needed a new voice in terms of the direction of the on the field decisions, meaning I was no longer  a fan of "Guillen Inc." 

 

Since I have dropped my former beloved team, "Guillen Inc." has had an extension picked up (based on what?), started his own website (which the club originally did not want), and has won some local sports honor (from stations which the White Sox own a share of).  All the while the franchise he manages has gone "all in" signing players such as Adam Dunn, Jesse Crain, and Will Ohman to join the likes of what is left of the 2005 World Series Champion team in Paul Konerko, AJ Pierzynski, and Mark Buehrle.  Clearly it has been a busy off season not only for the White Sox but also for GM Kenny Williams who has spent a record amount of this 2011 club in their efforts to win another championship for the city of Chicago. 

 

Yesterday in a sit down with Comcast Sportsnet's own Chuck Garfien, Kenny Williams made some bold statements about the imbalance of payroll in Major League Baseball and specifically the situation of a team paying Albert Pujols up to $30,000,000 dollars a season.  What Kenny failed to realize however is while he may be correct in some of his statements, it is hard to "cry wolf" when you are one of the top dogs in MLB.

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March Madness Flourishes With A Sport In A State Of Demise....

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February is an interesting month when it comes to covering sports in the Chicago market.  Termed "the dead period" or "sports abyss" by some sports radio personalities in town, you can term this duration of the sports calendar as simply the "tweener" of the end of the NFL season and the NCAA tournament.  There has never been the buzz of a NFL/MLB season in the time between those two events as they are the two major sports of this city. 

 

Local television and radio outlets in town during this time period begin to dabble into areas of sports which does not necessarily relate to the general daily viewing/listening audience.  One of those discussions/topics anchors/hosts attempt to get into is college basketball and why the Big Ten regular season (which by the way is ending soon) matters.  Now while Chicago may not have a high profile university attached to the city limits, one of the biggest events of the sports year is the NCAA Tournament.  More people than ever are watching/listening/gambling on the tournament yet fail to recognize that the madness begins early November. 

 

What I find interesting is successful as March Madness has been, the sport of college basketball is suffering more than ever and it is time to fix it.

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Marlon Byrd Raises Eyebrows With Revelation Of Victor Conte Relationship....

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One reason why I like spring so much is because it brings a renewed hope for the coming year, especially when it comes to our baseball teams in town.  Baseball fans of all ages counting down the days till their favorite team breaks camp and opens the season with a feeling of a clean slate.  Whatever happened the past year no matter how surprising or disappointing no longer matters because the new year begins now.  With all the positive vibes coming from both camps in Chicago and the experts beginning to weigh in on their projections before the first pitch is even thrown, baseball is back and that is all that matters. 

 

Last night I was watching HBO's wonderful sports program Real Sports With Bryant Gumbel, and all the positive vibes I felt from the Cubs camp came to a screeching halt.  I was not aware of two things which the multi Emmy winning program revealed last night.   

 

One was convicted steroids madman Victor Conte was out of prison and working with athletes again. 

 

Two....Cubs outfielder Marlon Byrd is his top baseball client. 

 

Like MLB I wondered to myself what in the hell is Marlon Byrd thinking teaming with the man who is most associated with baseball's black eye.....the steroid era?

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Chicago Blackhawks Should Start Marty Turco Every Game Till NHL Trade Deadline.....

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There comes a time in every sport where a team need to define how they are going to approach the remainder of the regular season.  The choice is very simple.  You are either a "buyer" or a "seller" when it comes to deciding the path your franchise will take nearing the trading deadline.  That is the decision Chicago Blackhawks General Manager Stan Bowman must make before the NHL's Feb. 28th trade deadline. 

 

The decision is actually easier than you may think. 

 

At 28-22-6 sitting three points out of the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference, it seems more unlikely as the days go by that the defending Stanley Cup Champions will not have an opportunity to defend their title.  With 26 games left on the schedule, the next six games will tell the tale of where Stan Bowman believes his team is headed.  With one deal already done and over shipping first round pick Jack Skille to Florida, the Blackhawks have made a statement they are willing to negotiate over standing pat.  Even though some other Blackhawks may be better options to be moved, the Blackhawks should start veteran goaltender Marty Turco every game till the trade deadline to see if they can find a possible "buyer".

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Top Five Sports Professions That I Would Never Retire From...

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Yesterday another veteran coach gave in to the current day situation with the torn relationship between players and those who are hired to make them better at their craft.  Jerry Sloan stepped down from a position he has held with the Utah Jazz since I was six years old.  The 23 year veteran head coach of the Utah Jazz finished with 1,221 career wins. There are currently 40 NBA players who were not even born when Sloan took over the head coaching position on December 9, 1988, and Derrick Rose was all but two months old that day.   

 

Whether or not you believe in the stories of a rift between Sloan and superstar point guard Deron Williams, the point is Sloan stepped down from a job that he surely had until he did not want it anymore.  In fact during his press conference yesterday, Sloan said:  

 

"Again, I've been blessed. Today is a new day. When I get this over with, I'll feel better. My time is up and it's time to move on." 

 

The retirement of Jerry Sloan got me to thinking.  I do not necessarily want to dive into the meaning of his retirement or if Sloan stepping down shows us that no coach is safe from a player controlled league like the NBA.  Sloan stepping down got me thinking if there are jobs in sports that I would never retire from.

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Why Can't America Accept The New Michael Vick?

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Failure is not something we all aim for, but only through failure we learn our greatest lessons.  Life is full of failures from not getting a job, to failing in a relationship, to failing at your job.  In each failure you learn a lesson about the task you failed attempting to accomplish.  The one result that all of us cherish because of failure is a second chance at either accomplishing the task or you have learned to move away and try something new.   

 

I do not understand why criminals should not have that same second chance. 

 

The last two years have brought sports fans the debate about Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick.  After serving 19 months in federal prison for dogfighting charges, he was released and given a second chance at continuing in his profession of being a professional football player.  Yet nearing 20 months after his release from federal prison, the nation continues to debate if Michael Vick should have been given the same right and privilege we all would want in the first place. 

 

Why is Michael Vick still an enemy of the people?

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Chicago Bulls Road Woes Will Cost Them In The NBA Playoffs....

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The old saying goes "To Be The Best, You Need To Beat The Best."  Meaning to become the absolute top of your craft, you need to find a way to be better than the top of your field.  Businesses around the world use this saying as a way to motivate their employees always to go that extra mile because it is always better to be the best in your position/field.  We all want it and while only some of us strive to be the best in our professions, the desire to be better is always there.  

  

The NBA is no different.  The Chicago Bulls are currently the third best team (record wise) in the Eastern Conference at a record of 34-16 only trailing the Boston Celtics and the Miami Heat.  Outside the San Antonio Spurs you could argue that the Chicago Bulls are the most surprising team in the league while they continue to win games missing key pieces of their starting rotation.  You could also say that the reason behind the success of the Chicago Bulls is because they have the MVP of the league in Derrick Rose running the point for them. 

  

Although I am not ready to hand over the MVP to the first overall pick of the 2008 NBA Draft, the Chicago Bulls could have a real problem come the playoffs that has nothing to do with any health issue of any player on the floor.  In fact it is something so small that most fans do not even recognize it.

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Why Fans Shouldn't Care About The NFL/NFLPA Negotiations Following Super Bowl XLV


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As the hours continue to count down to yet another entertaining final game of the NFL season, a dark cloud has continued to loom over the hype and excitement surrounding Super Bowl XLV.  A cloud that does not include what Ben Roethlisberger was doing on a Tuesday evening at a piano bar or even Aaron Rodgers texting every quarterback in the league and congratulating each of them on a great season.  That looming cloud is none other than the upcoming NFL/NFLPA discussions about the expiring collective bargaining agreement.


With each day passing and the end of the 2010 NFL season come Sunday, the story of the entire NFL offseason will be the ongoing discussions to find agreement on a new CBA between the owners and the players.  Even this week, both the NFLPA head DeMaurice Smith and Commissioner Roger Goodell both will hold news conferences to address the state of the expiring CBA and the talks between the two camps.  


While the NFL continues to gain more revenue than ever and Sunday's game between the Green Bay Packers and the Pittsburgh Steelers will surely set record television ratings, the possibility of no football in 2011 is a legit possibility.   Could a nation that salivates for football more than any other sport survive without it?


Then again should football fans even care.

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