Saturday, January 28, 2012

Welcome to Bracketville---Goal Tending Edition.

In a true anomaly, this weekend had exactly two games between ranked teams.

Buffalo point guard Jarod Oldham has 110 assists this season and only 80 shot attempts. That's a selfless point guard. Best of all, he shoots just 27 percent from the floor, so almost three-quarters of his shots still give his teammates an opportunity to get involved. He even has seven more steals than field goals.

Old Dominion will be wearing blue uniforms at home and on the road for the rest of the regular season, because their home whites and some basketball shoes were stolen from the team locker room over the weekend. That's a smart thief. Millions of people wear authentic Old Dominion jerseys around the country, so sporting one won't make anybody suspicious.

Missouri forward Ricardo Ratcliffe is shooting 67.9 percent from the line this season. That's not extraordinary. However, he's shooting 75.4 percent from the field, which A) puts him on pace to break Steve Johnson's 31-year-old Division I record for field goal percentage in a single season and B) makes absolutely zero sense.

Duke struggles getting out on perimeter shooters, gets caught up in screens all too often and just doesn’t communicate as well as past teams. They would be a lot better off if Austin Rivers realized there were four other Blue Devils on the floor.

After this afternoon’s uninspired win, Duke is 18-3…but they have lost the second half in seven of their 21 games.

Rivers has the lowest FG% of anyone on the Duke roster. Of the five top minutes-played guys he is a solid #5 in effective FG pct.

Maryland started the season with as many walk-ons as healthy scholarship players. New coach, Mark Turgeon has overcome that handicap pretty well.

UConn’s defense is allowing more than one point per possession in Big East Conference play.

Iowa State is the best team in all Division I basketball in plays run after timeouts…first in points per play (1.14), adjusted field goal percentage and scoring percentage (49.4%).

In conclusion, the newly released Nike platinum uniforms are just hideous. Fortunately, Nike bestowed them on only nine teams.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Welcome to Bracketville---Early Conference Play Issue.

Wisconsin's Jordan Taylor has played 55 Big Ten games in his career and committed a total of 52 turnovers.

This is Murray State’s 25th consecutive winning season. Only Syracuse, Arizona and Kansas have longer streaks.

Murray State’s top eight players are juniors and seniors.

Jackson State went 23-23 from the foul line in their 80-67 victory over Grambling State.

In their monumental loss to Florida State, UNC had their first player foul out this season (Kendall Marshall.) UVA has yet to lose a player to fouls this season.

When Brandon Paul of Illinois scored his 43 points in the win over Ohio State, it was the first time in 15 years that a player scored 43-plus points on fewer than 15 field-goal attempts. Going 13-15 from the foul line did not hurt.

It seems to me that it is easier to slow down a team that wants to run than it is to speed up a team that wants to play slowly.

The Pac-12 went a combined 1-24 against RPI Top 50 nonconference opponents…0-20 in true road games vs. RPI Top 100.

Duke does not guard shooters well and displays a lack of leadership on the court…but they don’t turn the ball over all that much.

Missouri is down to seven scholarship players. Virginia is down to nine.

Thomas Robinson of Kansas had 10 double-doubles in his first 14 games.

Under rated Marshall is #2 in the nation in rebounding margin.

Syracuse is not the greatest free throw shooting team.

If the two most important positions on the court are center and point guard, than Ohio State is good choice to win it all in March. OSU makes more free throws than its opponents attempt.

This is the finest defensive team John Calipari has had at Kentucky. Their overall talent is just overwhelming.

Marquette has shown me some real toughness as they soldier on after losing their outstanding center Chris Otule. They were a small team before his ACL injury.

Butler may be inconsistent this season, but they have shown flashes of brilliance at times this season. Ask Purdue and Stanford.

Florida’s Kenny Boyton and Erving Walker can drive you up a wall with their shot selection, but when they’re hot, they’re sizzling.

Duke have been ranked in the Top-10 of the AP poll for a league record 86 consecutive weeks. They are very over rated this season.

Where did Pitt and Villanova disappear to? Two real Houdini acts this season.

My favorite freshman remains Gonzaga’s Kevin Pangos.

I still consider Miami under rated, but they are making it difficult for me to keep that faith.

If Mason Plumlee keeps it up, he will become only the second player in the Coach K era to average a double-double for the season. Only Sheldon Williams (2005 and 2006) has pulled it off for K.

Herb Pope (Seton Hall) is sure under the radar, but he’s a keeper.

When Syracuse visited North Carolina State, it was their first nonconference game on a hostile court in three years---that’s not easy to do (or not do, as the case may be.)

Friday, January 13, 2012

Curmudgeon in the Wry 519

Friday, January 13, 2012---683 Words---Average Reading Time: 2 Minutes, 28 Seconds. (A pointless waste of time---time frittered away)

Often wrong…never in doubt.

Never lost, just hard to find.

Continuing to call them as I see them.

Offending readers and hindering productivity one issue at a time since 2001.

Virtually free of original ideas.

Warning: Contains unsound bites from the apple of life.

Being wrong is the risk you run by thinking and acting.

A Grumpy Old Man Production.

If you want this in a different language…move to a country that speaks it!

Gluten Free.


Rave: Rosemary Clooney.


Reading: “Fire In the Hole” by Elmore Leonard.


On the Hi Fi: “Jazz Pizzazz II.”


Under rated: John Forsythe.


I miss: Mickey Vernon, Jimmy Stewart, Dinah Washington.


Rant: I’d like to see a college All-American team composed of athletes who understand verb-subject agreement.


Rave: This October will mark 50 years since the release of the first James Bond spy film, Dr. No, starring Sean Connery (the only James Bond, for my money).


Truism: The only streaks in sports that aren’t overrated: consecutive championships.


English update: Ineptocracy (in-ep-toc'-ra-cy) - a system of government where the least capable to lead are elected by the least capable of producing, and where the members of society least likely to sustain themselves or succeed, are rewarded with goods and services paid for by the confiscated wealth of a diminishing number of producers.


Truism: Muscle shirts are for people with muscles, and rhythm guitarists.


Rant: Sporting events would be far more congenial with a lot less loud music and fewer sound effects.


Quote: “From his neck down, a man is worth a couple of dollars a day; from his neck up, he is worth anything his brain can produce.”—Thomas Alva Edison.


Hmmm: Ask anyone under 40 what time it is, they will look at their phone and answer you digitally. They have no concept of “25 or 6 to 4” or quarter after, half past or quarter ‘til.


Rant: Hasn’t the “use by date” come and gone for such tedious expressions as: “It’s All Good,” “Just Saying” and “Back in the Day?” Now, here’s an expression I intend to use a lot this year: "Nice turn signal, you moron."


R.I.P.: Kodak going into bankruptcy is the end of an era. Kodak’s Brownie made photography possible for millions…and made it simple. I owned a lot of Kodak cameras….from the Brownie to the InstaMatic to the disposables of today. Like the typewriter and the slide rule, new technology has brought other products to the forefront. However, I’ll still miss their bright yellow signature.


Rave: AMC “Hell on Wheels” has been renewed for a second season. “Hell on Wheels” could become an excellent show…enough of the self-indulgent monologues already! Let the characters carry the show…they’ve got plenty of talent.


Truism: Conventional Wisdom is always conventional, but much less often wise.


Hmmm: As good as the competition is among the Top-15 or so teams, it’s a shame that Women’s College Basketball is in the witness protection program.


Rant: It would be nice to see LeBron James have a season at least half as big as his ego and entourage, would it not?


Just asking: Is it true that fantasy football is to blame for America’s failure to keep pace with the Chinese.


Hmmm: Since the Mayan calendar predicts the end of the world this year, it would be nice if they put out a swimsuit issue.


Rant: Seems that to obama, the only rich people he resents are those who do not kick in to his re-election war chest


Hmmm: Movie crowds dropped to a 16-year low. Maybe the geniuses in Hollywood should stop making everything for 15-year-old boys.


Rant: You were shocked I know, when you learned that Katy Perry and Russell Brand were divorcing.


One last thing: By my count there were 35 bowl games this season…about 30 too many.


If you can read this, thank a teacher.

If you can’t, thank the teacher’s union.

If you are reading it in English, thank a Veteran.

That is all.

As you were.

Saturday, January 07, 2012

The Florida Citizen's Bailout

When you receive your next Florida Home Owner’s Insurance and Florida Automobile Insurance bills, please notice the Citizen’s Emergency Assessment. On my homeowner’s policy it amounted to 1% of my premium.

Think of Citizen’s Property Insurance Corporation as Florida’s answer to Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae---a pathetic quasi-government entity pretending to understand business, markets, industry and commerce.

It’s brought to you courtesy of the useless, liberal Charlie Crist…quite a legacy he left those of us who pay taxes and are prudent enough to insure our property and vehicles.

Consider the assessments you will find on your bills from legitimate, private-sector insurance companies as graphic evidence of your personal contribution to the Citizen’s bailout…your donation to the worthless ne’er-do-wells who don’t pay their way. It is not as subtle as the contributions your taxes are making to obama’s bailouts, as you can actually see, feel and write a check for this one.

Once again, you (and your insurance company) are being punished for doing business in a sensible manner---a concept that is foreign to the government.

So---tell me---how’s that hope and change thing working out for you?

On the positive side of the coin, Publix is doing their best to make up your bailout gift to the undeserving. The folks where “shopping is a pleasure” are once again offering the $50.00 gas cards for $40.00 now through Wednesday the 11th.

It is just an incredible offer…20% off your fill-up is hard to beat. Hot Damn!