He was the best.
The Dugout: Joe Nuxhall Rounds Third, Heads for Home: I live close enough to Cincy to have been able to listen in on his broadcasts once in a while, and it was a real treat. He was less a baseball analyst, and more a grandpa who happened to know a lot about the game. I'll miss him, and so will countless others. Today's Dugout, about Mr. Nuxhall, is after the jump.
Houston Dynamo Wins MLS Cup, Nobody Outside of RFK Stadium Sees It Happen: I understand that MLS wants to give club supporters an opportunity to travel to the game and enjoy their afternoon, but how does this league expect to attract American sports fans to its product -- and the kind of stadium atmosphere only soccer fans can produce -- if it schedules its championship at a time that virtually guarantees that only hardcore fans are paying attention?
Michigan Sets Monday Press Conference: Be sure to visit the page of our resident wolverine Brian Cook or his site MGoBlog for all you need to know on the situation, but it's 99% evident that Michigan coach Lloyd Carr will retire. I'm sure we'll say more about his legacy later this week, but in the meantime he'll go out having squandered the talents of Mike Hart and Chad Henne in four tries against Ohio State (notably today's 14-3 defeat). That's after having dropped the opener to Appalachian State in one of the handful of biggest upsets in college football history.
ESPN Promotes UFC 78: It's particularly interesting that that video focused so much on the fact that the fighters in tonight's main event, Rashad Evans and Michael Bisping, were both on The Ultimate Fighter, a reality show that's on Spike, an ESPN competitor.
Charles Barkley on Bonds: 'I Was So Mad, I Wanted to Scream and Cry': While at least a decent portion of America screamed and cheered when Barry Bonds was indicted, there wasn't rejoicing from all corners of this country. Take Charles Barkley, for instance. In the above interview with Bob Ley, he comes off more than a little upset. All and all, he raises many an excellent point. Why after four years have they come to this conclusion? Four years, really? Also, he states that though race wasn't the entire motivating factor here, it at least had something to do with it.
Derek Jeter's Mommy to the Rescue: Wait a second, where have I heard that "do you have children?" line of the defense before? Something about Oklahoma State ... a football coach ... a newspaper columnist ... ah yes, here it is! The Mike Gundy defense. Perfect.
BALCO's Steroids Tests Were Kind of Sketch: "During the criminal investigation, evidence was obtained including positive tests for the presence of anabolic steroids and other performance enhancing substances for Bonds and other athletes." Seems pretty damning, no? Well, Bonds' lawyer seems hellbent on fighting this. And really, when you hear about how BALCO actually administered its steroids tests, you might likely agree.
The Dugout: Bonds On Trial: When Barry Bonds hit his record breaking home run, we wrote a sentimental piece in tribute. If we're still writing in the hopefully distant future when Bonds dies, I'm sure we'll give him another. For now, let us kick Bonds while he's down for being such a jerk. Wistful sentiment has nothing to do with Barry Bonds.
High School Cheerleaders Suspended for Flashing Crowd: Now those high school cheerleaders at Ripon High School in Ripon, California, got suspended for two games because eight of them did a routine where they showed the crowd at a football game their underwear, which spelled out I-N-D-I-A-N-S-#1. And now it's a huge local scandal.
Live Blog: MLS Cup 2007: The Wi-Fi might be spotty, but FanHouse has managed to elbow it's way inside the press box here at MLS Cup 2007. We're just minutes away from kickoff, and I'll do my best to liveblog the festivities to you -- as long as our Internet access holds out.
Coach Killers, Week 11: Philip Rivers Does a Great Craig Whelihan Impression: All together now: PHILIP RIVERS ... OVER-RATED! Since Marty Schottenheimer has been elevated to sainthood status (thanks, Norvell!), looking back at his time in San Diego, there's not much he did wrong.
Texans 23, Saints 10: Reggie Bush Isn't Very Good Right Now: Saints running back Reggie Bush, on the other hand, had a awful day. Against a Texans defense that has been awful against both the run and the pass, he rushed 15 times for 34 yards, an average of 2.3 yards. He caught 12 passes for 70 yards.
Rams 13, 49ers 9: A Score Perfectly Befitting Its Two Teams: You hear coachisms like "We made just enough plays to win the game" often, but the real story when you're talking about a Rams/49ers game is who can make enough plays not to lose the game. In this case, it was the Rams doing just enough to not sabotage their chance at victory.
Tomlin Gets His First Big Test: For the first time as a head coach, Mike Tomlin's team failed its test. It may not have been the Steelers first loss under Tomlin, but it was the first time his team laid an egg. Apparently the team simply couldn't play to its potential after three straight division wins. It happened to Chuck Noll. It happened to Bill Cowher. It happens to Bill Belichick (remember some of his Dolphins losses) and it will happen to Tomlin' again.
Carson Palmer's Favorite Receiver? Arizona DB Antrel Rolle: Cincinnati made a nice 3rd quarter comeback to get at 28-27 with a great TD toss from Carson Palmer to Chris Henry and a big TD run from DeDe Dorsey. However, with the ball at midfield, Carson Palmer found Antrel Rolle for his 2nd TD grab of the day. The problem is that Rolle plays for the Cardinals. Rolle picked off the pass and returned it 54 yards for an easy touchdown. Earlier in the game, Rolle picked off Palmer and returned it for a 55-yd TD.
After Further Discussion ... The Browns Win: You won't see many kicks like Phil Dawson's as the clock ran out in regulation. It hit one upright, ricocheted off the back of the crossbar and back out. The crowd went wild, the Ravens went wild and Baltimore's playoff hopes were jolted back to life. But just for a second. The kick hit a part of the crossbar that was through the uprights and the Browns protested that the call was wrong. The officials conferred and ruled that the kick was good. That sent the game to overtime where Dawson plugged another kick, in more conventional style, and won the game 33-30 for the Browns.
Miracle Comeback Might Have Saved Phil Fulmer's Job: The Vols' resurgence has been amazing. Since their awful 1-2 start to the season, Fulmer and co. have won seven of their last eight games. Only Kentucky now stands in the way of an SEC East title and a date with LSU in the Georgia Dome.
SEC Fans Say: Thanks for Nuthin', Bama: SEC fans are accused of being many things: obnoxious, overbearing, and boastful make the short list. Well, Alabama's 21-14 loss to Louisiana Monroe took a lot of air out of our collective balloons today. The Tide have long been considered one of the SEC's most storied programs, despite their lack of recent success. People notice when the Tide lose.
LSU Doesn't Want to Play Georgia: At least that's what can be inferred from LSU athletic director Skip Bertman, who was "noticeably excited" upon hearing about Tennessee's comeback win against Vanderbilt. Either Bertman (pictured, noticeably excited in his days as LSU's baseball coach) is a big Phil Fulmer fan, or he sees the Vols as easier fodder for his team in the SEC championship game -- as long as Tennessee continues to win, they'll face LSU in Atlanta, a Vol loss would send the 'Dawgs to the Georgia Dome.
Kansas - Missouri Goes National, Primetime: The stakes are obviously quite high. The winner will ascend to the Big 12 Championship Game and a shot at a BCS bowl appearance if they beat the champion of the Big 12 South (likely Oklahoma or Texas). It could be extra special for Kansas which has a fairly good shot at playing in the BCS National Championship Game if it can win twice more.
Johnson Holds Serve, Wins '07 NASCAR Title: Jeff Gordon said it best last week when he said Jimmie Johnson "has flat killed everyone" in the Chase for the Nextel Cup. That didn't change Sunday night at Homestead-Miami Speedway. Jimmie Johnson finished seventh in the Ford 400 to wrap up his second NASCAR Nextel Cup Championship in a row by 77 points over Hendrick Motorsports teammate and co-team owner, Jeff Gordon. Johnson is the first Cup series repeat champion since Gordon did it in 1997-98.
2007 NASCAR Season: My Top 35 Memories:
2. Mark Martin didn't win the Daytona 500
3. Michael Waltrip Racing's Intake Gate
4. Washington State dissed NASCAR fans
5. Juan Pablo Montoya won in Mexico