Friday, December 29, 2006

Bowl picks...

My thoughts on a few games...

LSU 9 Notre Dame

USC 1 Michigan

West Va 10 ½ Ga. Tech

Va. Tech 2 ½ Georgia

Ohio State 7 ½ Florida

Here's your happy thoughts for the New Year...

My new hero is Jibbs from St. Louis - check him out with a classic tune from childhood turned into a hip hop classic!

Also - can't bring in the New Year without some good vodka - get the best in Van Gogh! Check out the recipies for great martini's and so much more.

Earthshaking news from San Francisco and it's not the earth moving...

Let's start this post with a simple request from me to baseball owners: NEVER, EVER, EVER, EVER AGAIN cry poverty.

Barry Zito signed a 7-year $126 million dollar deal with the San Francisco Giants.

STOP - go back and re-read the last sentence.

The former Oakland A's pitcher went 16-10 with a 3.83 ERA last season and has a 102-63 career record with a 3.55 ERA. He won the 2002 AL Cy Young Award after going 23-5. Not bad numbers. But are you kidding me with this contract?

First, a guy who plays every five or so days gets roughly $18 million a year? Throughout his career, he has pitched about 35 games a year. If he does that for the Giants, that will be $514,285.71 per start. That's a lot of sushi for Peter Magowan's team to sell at the ballpark to pay that deal off.

Then take into account a 7-year deal. There is precedence as to why you shouldn't give a pitcher a deal like this. Actually, there are two deals to look at - the largest contract for a pitcher was Mike Hampton's $121 million, eight-year deal with the Colorado Rockies before the 2001 season. Now pitching for the Atlanta Braves, he has averaged a 10-9 record with a 4.63 ERA since signing his deal.

Kevin Brown received a $105 million deal from 1999-2005 from the Los Angeles Dodgers. He also had access to a private plane to fly him back and forth to his home near Macon, GA. He did a little better than Hampton, he averaged an 11-6 record with a 3.55 ERA.

The New York Mets were the lead dog in the race for Zito, but even GM Omar Minaya wouldn't give Zito more than five-years. "I could not recommend to our ownership crossing the barrier of five years," Minaya said yesterday on a conference call. "Our final - first, really - offer was for five years. We were going to be aggressive on the AAV (average annual value), but we wouldn't go seven years."

Pitchers are not always like fine wine and age well. Roger Clemens is the exception to the rule. When and where he signs - Clemens may look like a steal compared to Zito's deal. Big money is on the Yankees to get him, but keep an eye on Boston. Be a great way to end his first ballot Hall of Fame career where he started.

The big winner on this deal, besides Zito, is his agent Scott Boras. Is there a big contract in baseball that gets done without this guy? Between Zito and his Boston deal with Daisuke Matsuzaka, we won't need to hold a benefit for him again this year.

The funniest part of this deal is that the ink isn't dry on the contract and people are already saying that the Giants still can't improve their spot in the NL West.'s Jacob Luft predicts that the Giants will still finish fourth in their division.

Bottom line of all of this is simple - if you have a kid who is left-handed, tape a baseball to his hand at a young age and make him a pitcher. Heck, anyone who doubts me can check out Bruce Hurst. Was the ying to Clemens yang with the Red Sox's in the 80's. He signed a nice contract with the San Diego Padres and finished his career with a 145-113 record with a 3.92 ERA.

Quick hits from elsewhere....

Kudos to Rutgers for winning their first bowl game ever and finishing the year with a 11-2 record. If you went to Vegas to start the year and told any sportsbook that this would happen, you would have made a lot of money. Of course, you would have had to wait for them to stop laughing at you.

Please Texas Tech, win a game for all of us. It's a nice story that Bobby Knight is going to win 880 games and break the record, but please don't tell me the warm fuzzy story about Knight. No one can sell that story to any of us.

Saddam Hussein is supposed to be hanged at some point soon. Think we can carry that live on Fox News or CNN? Would definitely get better rankings than that OJ "If I Did It" stuff.

Mike Tyson was arrested for DUI and cocaine possession. At least he's consistent - ya have to give him that. Sad, just sad.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Marching towards 2007

Want to take a second and say thanks for stopping by this year to keep up with me, the family and all kinds of wacky things along the way.

I know I get a little incensed over certain sports things from time to time and I appreciate your indulgence.

Over the next year, I will keep up with my posts about many different topics. One of the topics I will be speaking about is my new world at GCI Group. I am part of a global public relations company that is filled with tons of great people. I honestly haven't been surrounded by such good people since my days at USA Today and I am having a blast working on all different kinds of accounts.

Best part of my gig is that I get to work on our Digital Media practice and get to work with Paul Walker. He has his own blog about Digital Media and all the great things going on in the DM world called The Zone Read. Check it out when you get a chance.

So - if anyone out there needs any PR services - we are your folks. Offices around the world with wonderful people and great capabilities.

That's it for now. I am going to try and update the posts on a daily basis - so check me out and let your friends in on this crazy world. If you have topics for me - let me know what you want to talk about.

Until then - wishing you and yours a wonderful, safe, healthy and peaceful New Year.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Passing of a hero

As a political junkie, there's no way I can go through the day without mentioning the passing of former President Gerald Ford.

He was, as Bo Schembechler would say, a "Michigan Man." But he was more than that. He was the man who lead our country out of scandal and out of war. He was as Tom Brokaw called him, "an uncomplicated man."

Think about this - he wasn't "chosen" by the American people to be the Vice-President nor was he "chosen" to be the President. He was thrust into both roles by scandal and he did his best to get us through Watergate and the end of Vietnam. He made the hard decision to pardon former President Richard Nixon and was highly criticized for his decision. The only shame of his life was that he lost his chance to earn his OWN presidency to Jimmy Carter. Many historians blame the pardon for the loss. They also look back on that decision and give Ford tons of credit for the pardon and how it helped heal the country from its wounds of Watergate. Who knows how things could have been different had Ford beaten Carter in 1976. I do know that a better, more respected man would have been in the Oval Office from my view of history.

They say that things happen in three's - so here's my question - who is the third "Michigan Man" to follow Bo and Ford to the Big House in the sky?

Not to worry boys, Michigan should beat up on USC in the Rose Bowl. Enjoy the view....

Just when you think it's safe to go back in the water...

For those of you who enjoy watching train wrecks, this is your lucky week!

The New York Football Giants are at it one last time under the leadership (or lack there of) of Tom Coughlin. With one week to go in the season, he takes away the play calling abilities of John Hufnagel, the offensive coordinator. Let's stop and think about this for a minute. The ship is sinking - it's been just a brutal month and a half, yet if you win the last game of the year vs. the lowly Washington Redskins on Saturday night, you still get in the playoffs.

"John Hufnagel is not a scapegoat here," Coughlin said after practice to the . "He is not. But we need a change, we need a spark, and that's the way it goes. How can you look at the production of Sunday and not think that, OK, there's some issue here?"

SO with that change - your last chance to save your job, who do you turn the play calling over to? Is there some genius on your staff that can all of a sudden right the ship? What is the name of this evil genius?? Tell me - please!!

Kevin Gilbride.

C'mon. Seriously. C'mon.

Water coming in on all sides of the boat and you hand the biggest bucket to a guy who is more famous for getting punched on the sidelines by Buddy Ryan than anything he has ever done in football.

The NY Daily News' Ralph Vacchiano calls the move a "desperate one." Bob Glauber of Newsday says that Coughlin should call the plays himself. Gary Myers of the NY Daily News calls it "panicking."

And by the way, for those of you who don't know, Gilbride has been Eli's quarterback coach for the last few years. Anyone besides me now see why Eli is having issues?

"If were going to turn this thing around, it's going to be a matter of the players doing it ourselves," Manning said. "We've got to step up and we've got to execute the game plan, no matter what it is."

"I think he's an excellent game-day coach and, as I said, I've been with him when we've been very successful and it was, to me, a natural progression," Coughlin said. "If I wasn't going to do it or if I was going to do it in some capacity, Kevin would have been very much involved in it anyway."

Well - here it is, the hail mary before the game thrown by Coughlin. For all of our sakes boys, just drop it and let's change the world for the better!

This ship has not only sunk, it has sailed....check out Paul Schwartz's column in the NY Post speaking about the changes that need to be made.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006


I have been waiting a long, long time and in the NY Daily News on Tuesday, Gary Myers said what I have been thinking about my beloved Giants ... read his column .

If this wasn't enough, I went to the NY Post to read Steve Serby and he agrees with Myers and me. Read his column.

They need to do three simple things to change our franchise into a winner (in this order):

1 - Fire Tom Coughlin!!!!!!!

2 - Hire Scott Pioli from New England as their new GM.

3 - Hire Charlie Weis from Notre Dame as their new head coach.

With those three moves, we head back in the right direction. PLEASE Mr. Mara and Mr. Tisch - PLEASE just do it!! It will cost a couple of bucks - but a few titles will make it back for you!

Merry New Year!!!

Hi kids - just got back from a week in West Palm Beach with the family. What a great time. We stayed at the Breakers and I have to tell you - it is by far the most kid friendly place I have EVER been.

Every restaurant, every room, every thing is open to kids. Now, you may not want to take them to everything, but it's awfully nice to know that you can.

For those with kids, I don't have to explain how you need another week off after taking a 4-year-old and an 18 month-old away for a week. For those without kids, I cannot even explain how absolutely draining it is. Every second of every day there - it was non-stop craziness. First day we got there Abbie decided to wake up at 5:55 a.m. - because she wanted to go stick her piggies in the ocean. I tried to explain that the ocean is still sleeping and won't be up for a few hours ... she didn't go for it. Have to try though...

Both kids loved the beach. My little one was a terror. She sat on the shore waiting for the waves and she kept getting knocked over by them and she was laughing her butt off the whole time. Sand in her hair and mouth and she is sitting there cracking up. No doubt in my mind, she is the one to make my life crazy when she gets older.

Just like last year, we were there at the same time that Matt Lauer and his family were there. He seems nice enough, but his wife seems very cold and distant. They just had their third kid and they had a baby nurse and nanny with them. Funny, you would think on a big property like the Breakers you'd never see the same people over and over. Well, we kept running into Matt everywhere. They had the bungalow at the pool right next to us. They had the room right down the hall from my in-laws. Just funny stuff.

Anyway, back in Atlanta, rumor has it that it may snow this week here. Always funny to watch a snowstorm in a city so not prepared for it.

Hope all's well in your neck of the woods. Got some great holiday cards and we are going to be hanging here for Rookie's Night (New Year's Eve to those who go out). Peach Bowl on the 30th with Georgia playing Virginia Tech - the Nunnally's will be here for the game. He will be a tad outnumbered by the folks wearing Red and Black - but bless his heart, he will be Hokie Hokie Hi'ing until his hearts content!

My only wish for the New Year, besides health and happiness is simple: please, please, please - FIRE TOM COUGHLIN!!!

Be well and I hope to get to see y'all in the New Year!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Where is Jim Croce when I need him???

When I was growing up, my mom got me into music. Whatever she had, I listened to. It was great breaking out the 8-track tapes (showing my age).

One of my favorite musicians still to this day is Jim Croce. He died in a plane crash in September of 1973. I was 5-years-old and I remember my mom being upset about his death.

Why do I mention this? I know some of you ask what the point is of me mentioning this. Well, I am sitting here overlooking the East River in Manhattan and I can't get one of his songs out of my head.

Well things were spinnin round me
And all my thoughts were cloudy
And I had begun to doubt all the things that were me
Been in so many places
You know Ive run so many races
And looked into the empty faces of the people of the night
And something is just not right, cause I know
That I gotta get out of here
Im so alone
Dont you know that I gotta get out of here
cause new yorks not my home
Though all the streets are crowded
Theres somethin strange about it
I lived there bout a year and I never once felt at home
I thought Id make the big time
I learned a lot of lessons awful quick
And now Im tellin you
That they were not the nice kind
And its been so long since I have felt fine, thats the reason
That I gotta get out of here
Im so alone
Dont you know that I gotta get out of here
cause new yorks not my home

I am from here, but it's just not my home. I look around and it's funny. I enjoy my time here, but I am thinking about getting on my FAVORITE airline, Delta, and heading back to Atlanta.

If we had laid odds on it when I was in high school - you would have lost a lot of money if you would have bet on me NOT living here.

I am sure my wife is laughing her ass off reading this - I am still known as the "Damn Yankee" to my father-in-law and that's fine with me. As long as I am allowed to live in Dixie - call me whatever you want.

Suffice to say, I have gone from Jim Croce to Neil Young ... Southern Man!

How bizarre...

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Back in the saddle again

Flew in beautiful downtown Newark, N.J. yesterday and boy were my arms tired...

Actually, was on a flight from Orlando to Newark and the flight was jammed. I was in a window seat in the back of the bus. In front of me, a 5-year-old girl and her dad sat right in front of me and put his seat all the way back. Next to me was a woman from Greece that elbowed me for the whole flight. Behind me was a 4-year-old boy who kicked my seat the entire flight.

Yes ladies and gentlemen, one airline can make a difference - good ol' Continental.

We did get in 30 minutes early, which would have been great if you didn't have to wait an hour for our bags. What a joke.

Finally, I made my way through the Lincoln Tunnel to Manhattan. Funny, haven't been here in a while, but my juices get flowing when I get back here. I think I can do it for a week at a time, but I cannot imagine living here again. It's not a knock against my home part of the country, I have just seen the other side of the fence and I like it a lot more.

The guy driving me to the hotel was from Pakistan and he was screaming and cursing and flipping people off left, right and center. Made me laugh.

Staying at the Roger Smith Hotel - not a bad joint. Cheapest room I could find - $290 a night. Just nuts.

Weather is in the 50s and is nice out. Here till Thursday. I am sure I will have some things to spout off about while I am here.

Check back....

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Time for some fun ....

You have to go try this out ... the winning score so far is 323.4.

Let me know if you can beat it....

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Sign the apocalypse is near

As most of you may know I am 38 years old.

As most of you may also know I am originally from Fort Lee, N.J.

I am very proud of both facts. I am very fortunate to be able to have grown up in a wonderful part of the world and although it’s been a while since I have lived there, there are days when I long for the George Washington Bridge.

While I feel that way, most people pick on my home state. Honestly, I do it as well. Start the laughter at Newark and work your way down. But it’s still where I am from.

One of the things that most people used to laugh at is the State University of New Jersey. I call it SUNJY but most call it Rutgers. When I was growing up, it was a nice little state school in East and New Brunswick. For those of you familiar with the N.J. Turnpike – exit 9. Most of my friends wanted out of N.J. and certainly we didn’t want to go to Rutgers. It was the laughing stock of college athletics and it was in a city where Johnson and Johnson dominate everything.

For all these years, Rutgers has been the athletic joke of our state. Now some of you wisenheimers would say that the Giants can also be part of that conversation, but trust me, it’s not even close.

Then, out of nowhere, comes Greg Schiano.

For those who have been under a rock, he is Rutgers football coach. He was an assistant at the University of Miami before coming to N.J.

He has brought Rutgers to back-to-back bowl appearances for the first time in school history and most of his team is underclassmen. He was one 52-yard field goal from going to a BCS game, but lost in triple overtime to West Virginia on the road.

What Schiano has done is unfathomable. The game versus Louisville was insane - ESPN national television coverage and a packed house where people were paying $500 for a ticket. No one ever would pay .05 for a ticket before and now it’s as hot as can be.

So, back to the apocalypse. Why is it here, you are asking?

The headline off of says it all, “Schiano tells Miami he's not leaving Rutgers
Are you serious?? Read it again. Maybe my eyes are messed up. He wants to STAY!!!???

"We just need to keep moving forward. There are people committed at Rutgers to taking it to the level we're talking about. That's what's important to me. We're just scratching the surface here at Rutgers," Schiano said. "The sky's the limit. We're going to do great things here. We haven't done it yet. The seniors have laid the foundation for really, really big things. We've recruited really great young guys in this program and this is home."

This is HOME??? Are you kidding me? Is this real? Is this a joke?? He wants to stay??

We are talking about the “U” as all the alumni call it and he wants to stay.

Good for him.

Better yet, good for Rutgers and all of us folks from Jersey. Now we can go back to picking on Newark!

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Bye bye Coughlin ... bye bye Coughlin, we hate to see you stay....

Sharing some thoughts….

After going to see the SEC championship game, I am convinced that Florida should get a shot at Ohio State. My reasoning? Nothing better than shutting up a bunch of obnoxious, little whiny fans than getting their asses handed to them on national television. Be careful what you wish for Gators.

I also think that Chris Leak is the better version of Reggie Ball. The difference – Leak has people that bail his butt out ever week. He is one of the worst quarterbacks to have a chance to win a national title. Sorta like David Woodley of the Dolphins in the Super Bowl. By the way, the year after that Super Bowl, the Dolphins drafted some guy named Marino. Leak won't be that lucky.

Hey Tim Tebow, I can’t wait to see you start next year. You’re going to be good, but someone is going to plant their helmet between your numbers on your back because of how you jump up and down like a little boy and wave your arms. Be better to watch you during your junior year after you mature a tad. But then again, you are acting like most Gator fans.

For those Michigan fans who disagree, you did have your chance and you did a great job. But to me, if you don’t win your conference championship, how can you be the second best team? Heck if Oklahoma did get jobbed by officials in the Oregon game, they would have a stronger argument than both you and Florida.

Why I love Bob Stoops? Have you heard him say thing one about being jobbed since the Oregon game? With that being the case Urban Meyer and Lloyd Carr – just shut up. If either one of you REALLY cared, you would be leading the charge of getting us a plus one game.

And I don’t want to hear a university president say ANYTHING until they figure out that if you take the top four teams and use the bowl system as is – you don’t need any more games or days! For example - the top team Ohio State would host the fourth ranked team, LSU, in the Rose Bowl. Then the second ranked team in Florida would play the third ranked team in the Orange Bowl. From there - the BCS title game is the winners the following Saturday. I would rather have the fight between four and five then two and three. Plus - we get to see it on the field instead of on a computer screen.

Has anyone ever heard this presidents complain how much time basketball players miss during March Madness?

Speaking of madness, watching the Giants-Cowboys game is making me laugh. How many more dumb penalties can the Giants take? How many more stupid play calls can the offense make? How many times can the Giants defense play five yards off a receiver when they are in a third and three? I don’t want to read about Eli this week – he did everything he could and it’s not his fault. None of this has been his fault. He hasn’t played well – but if you watched the game you know whose fault it is.

How many more days until the Giants fire Tom Coughlin? If there is a man upstairs controlling the universe – I hope we lose every game till he’s gone. Matter of fact, I started a new blog called "Fire Tom Coughlin Now" check it out at

I am going to post it on the Giants web site and then email the Mara's and Tisch's until it's done! Mr. Mara and Mr. Tisch - you fathers are rolling in their graves with what has gone on this year. Stop the lunacy now!

Wonder where Mike Vanderjagt is? Wonder what he is doing right now? Peyton’s old idiot kicker deserves this as much as anyone. Would love to buy him a drink or two right now and then put him on television again.

Honestly, I am more upset about Rutgers losing to West Virginia than I am about the Giants loss. At least the Giants could get a better draft pick…..

Those kids at Rutgers deserve more than the Texas Bowl. Just would have been classic to see a Wake Forest-Rutgers Orange Bowl. What kind of odds do you think you could have gotten on that at the start of the season?