Sunday, December 31, 2006

How In The Hell.....

...did the Chiefs get into the PLAYOFFS?! WOW. KC was a long shot at best to get into the postseason when the day began. Then the Bengals lost. Then Titans lost. Then the FREAKIN' San Fransisco 49ers beat the Denver Broncos in Overtime! How 'bout that for Chief fan. The Broncos lose and the Chiefs get in? They got in thanks to their star running back Larry Johnson who's 138 yards rushing lead KC to a 35-30 win over Jacksonville today at Arrowhead.

KC will travel to Indy for a game on Saturday with a 3:30 pm kick on Big Sports 590 and NBC. With Indy's pathetic run defense, you have to like the Chiefs' chances at actually WINNING a playoff game this team around.

Let's be honest - the Chiefs don't belong or deserve to be in the playoffs. Teams that blow 28-14 leads to Cleveland shouldn't be in. But they are in - so why not enjoy the ride.

The Chiefs vs. Colts is not the only really interesting match up for WildCard Weekend. How about the Patriots vs. the Jets? Magini vs. Belicheck Round 3! 1-1 so far. Or the Eagles vs. the Giants's rubber match game in Philly? Dallas vs. Seattle will be worth watching because I want to see if Tony Romo can actually pull the 'Boys out of this nosedive.

My preseason Super Bowl pick is not going to happen - Cowboys vs. Bengals. Now that we have the teams set....My prediction is Saints vs. Chargers. I want to take Philly but Jeff Garcia? I just don't trust him in the postseason yet. Philly vs. New England rematch would be a lot of fun though.

Special Win Closes Out 2006

Down by 11 with 4:38 to play vs. Missouri State at home yesterday, I wrote in my notes "Ball Game" after 2 FT's went down for Bears. I was all prepared to host the Bluejay Wrap-Up post game show and talk about missed opportunities, lack of effort in the second half, and season of promise gone sour. It didn't happen that way although it very easily could have. A win is a win but those with pace-makers should beware of the 2006-2007 Bluejays. This season is proving to be one heck of a roller coaster ride.

The team needed a spark and a minor miracle to send the crowd home with smiles. What they got from their 2 Senior, First Team PreSeason All-MVC players most likely saved their season. Nate Funk and Anthony Tolliver, for the first time, looked like they were on the same page for most of the game. Down the stretch, the two stars willed their team to victory with clutch free throws and tremendous defense. Funk 's line: 23 points, 7 assists, 5 reb, 3 steals in 37 minutes. Tolliver's: 20 points, (10-13 FTs), 6 rebs, 3 assists, 2 blocks, 2 steals in 35 minutes. Even though Dane Watt's 3 pointer won the game for the Jays, it was Funk and AT that deserve the most credit for the W.

A 77-74 win over Missouri St. 1-0 in the Valley. Still undefeated at home. Maybe the start of the year that everyone was hoping for.

Coach Dana Altman has been searching for a line up that would give his team the best chance to win. He tried everything in the first 10 games that he could think of and the result was a disappointing 4 loss start. Yesterday, in front of nearly 16,000, the Bluejays found a line up that brought the intensity that the fans and Coach had been expecting all year long. Funk, Bahe, Watts, Tolliver and yes, Pierce Hibma on the floor together appeared to understand what Coach Altman was asking them to do. The result was a 18-4 run for the Jays over the final 4:38 and big win.

I've been very critical of Hibma this year but his 6 points in the first half and defensive effort in the 2nd were huge. Now, he almost wore the goat horns by taking a 3 when the team was down by 4 with 1 minute to play. Luckily for him, it didn't cost the team. I've said before, Pierce should not be shooting 3's in key moments but his defense down the stretch set a great example.

The Jays didn't do it alone and had help in the comeback. The Bears missed 4 crucial free throws down the stretch and looked overwhelmed by the crowd's intensity. Coach Barry Hinson after the game said it all "I told them in the locker room that we gave that game away. Teams that win championships, which we have never done, find ways to win games like that." Winning on the road in the Valley (and in Omaha) is going to very tough this year, especially if the Qwest Center crowds are similar to yesterday. (Although UNI did it last night at Witchta)

Senior Blake Ahearn dropped 21 points on the Jays including 5 of 10 3 point shooting (a few seemingly from Grand Island) but it wasn't enough. Missouri State went to the line 13 fewer times than the Jays and proved to be the difference. It was a game of streaks and the 14-0 run midway through the second half for the Bears may have happened too soon.

Without Ty Morrison, without Josh Dotzler - Creighton needed their bench to step up. Nick Bahe, Pierce Hibma and Manny Gakou all played key roles in the comeback and gave the starters a much needed blow. With Freshman Isaac Miles playing his worst game as a Jay, (committing 5 turnovers in 24 minutes, looking completely lost a times) Nick Bahe came in and settled down the team. It proved to be a key component to the win. His attitude and emotion will be something that the Jays need more of this season.

I called the game a must win and they got it done vs. the Bears. Next up is Illinois St on Monday. If The Qwest Center crowd can duplicate the atmosphere from yesterday, it will be very tough for them to walk in and win, especially with how young they are. With Nebraska football playing right before the game, the number of fans in attendance will be an interesting key to watch.

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Ty is Done....

First D'Angelo, then Josh gets hurt again and now, Junior College transfer Ty Morrison has left the Bluejay program. I heard about it at about 12 noon today....the Jays made it official at 1:30 pm.

I'm trying to contact Ty and figure why he has left the program but the battle with Graves Disease really prevented us from ever seeing how good he could have been. This is a guy that was being recruiting Arizona and Gonzaga for God Sakes but could barely play for 5 straight minutes.

More info to come....

Friday, December 29, 2006

Must Win Game For Creighton

The Bluejays vs. The Bears. Altman vs. Hinson. Funk vs. Ahern. 3 pm at the Qwest Center better not be the "Quiet Center" tomorrow if the Bluejays have any hope of playing in March without a Tournament Title bid. When I saw the picture to the right I thought - That's the Jays! ...playing like it's 3 on 1, lost and confused. It's been very hard to watch this team choke on their own hype.

Tomorrow is the start of the most anticipated Missouri Valley Conference schedule to date and it could not come at a worst time for the Jays. Media doom and gloom, injuries, poor shooting and defense has suddenly put a lot of pressure on CU. I've made the comparison on my show that the 2006-07 Jays are looking a lot like the 2006 Iowa St. Football team. Well, the Cyclones went 1-7 in the Big 12. Creighton better find itself soon or they will suffer a similar fate.

Now after a 2-1 trip to Hawaii, CU will have to live without PG Josh Dotzler for at least a month after having finger surgery. The team has lost 4 of their first 1o and has lost every road game they've played in ugly fashion. Obviously, not a good start for the post season resume'. They simply do not have the chemistry to win on the road right now. Undefeated at home but the best win being Xavier - no wins on the road....its a pathetic start to a season that had a ton of promise.

However, it still can be magical. For that to happen, the Jays must beat Missouri State tomorrow. A win will send a message to the Valley that CU is still the team to beat in the conference. It will give the team confidence to move past the non-conference slate and face Illinois State on the 1st with a bounce in their step. A loss however, would be crushing. The ball is rolling in the wrong direction and people are jumping off the bandwagon. Yet, like Steve Spurrier always said "You win the Conference first and the rest will take care of itself".

The Bears came into the season with a lot to prove after last year's heart crushing NIT bid. Basketball fans across the country watched on Selection Sunday as Barry Hinson looked like someone just killed his dog right in front of him. He has made the 2006-07 season his personal vendetta against the NCAA and Jim Nance/Billy Packard and the team has responded to his call. Missouri State and Wichita State have been the front runners of the Valley so far but they both have shown cracks recently. Tomorrow, the Jays need to keep that crack growing in the Bears.

Missouri State is the new face of the little guy. It's the role the Jays used to play of the unknown underdog from some small nowhere town, fighting for respect. Sporting News just called the 2006-07 Bluejays the most disappointing team of the year after the nation finally paid attention to the program. I don't disagree with the assement. Maybe, after playing the Bears, the Jays will remember the style of play that sold 13,000 season tickets before the year and get back to being the team to beat in the Valley.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Wanna go to the Cotton Bowl?

So what happened to Nebraska fans support like no one else? Neither Nebraska nor Auburn have sold out there allotment of tickets for Monday's Cotton Bowl and there is ZERO buzz for this game.

In fact, according to - you can buy tickets for as low at $12 bucks! What?!!! The face value is $90! This, the excitement for a game that has Nebraska in it? Last year, the Alamo Bowl had the fans buzzing after missing a bowl game in 2004...and the Huskers were facing a Michigan team that had played like crap all year. At least Auburn has defeated 2 BCS being Florida!! Why aren't the fans going in droves?

I, for one, am very excited for the game. I've picked Auburn to win 28-24 but a big Nebraska win could make a large statement for next year. I think it could be one of the best of the bowl season if both teams show up. I guess the question should be asked as well - will the fans show too?

Monday, December 25, 2006

The Anti Christmas link :)

So its Christmas....but why does Christmas always feel like a morning event and the night time its seems so far over. Well, in that spirit....comes this link. This is NOT safe for work but its the pics of Miss Nevada 2006 that got her canned by Trump.

Now on first glance, I thought Trump had a double standard leaving Miss USA with her crown and firing Miss Nevada. HOWEVER, check out these pics. Miss USA was ACCUSED of acting like a slut....well, we've got the proof of Miss Nevada. Pics are awesome! :)

Enjoy! it my Christmas present to all the men who listen to the show

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Great Exposure for Nebraska

So I'm watching NFL football (Saints vs. Giants...I don't get the Pats vs. Jax game here in Philly) and I can't get over the number of times I've seen the Nebraska vs. Auburn Cotton Bowl game promos during this game and over the past week. Even though the Huskers aren't in a BCS game - you wouldn't it know given the promotion of the Cotton Bowl. Fox Sports should get a check from Nebraska for the exposure that they are giving the program.

This is why the Cotton Bowl was better than the Fiesta Bowl for the long term. The first game of 2007 on Fox will have more interest than the Fiesta Bowl. Also, the promotion of the "Fox Bowl Bash" will give the Huskers a large audience hungry for some post New Year's Eve football to lounge on the couch and watch. Nobody wants to see Boise St. and Oklahoma. Just looking at the ad - when you see it, what game is swallowed up? Yup - the Fiesta Bowl. What game seems really interesting -yup, the Cotton Bowl. Let's hope the game lives up to the audience size that it should have come the 1st of the year.

While I'm here - I didn't watch the Creighton vs. Hawaii game yet but it sounds like the guys either ran out of gas or just fell apart at the end of the game. Nice showing by both Nebraska and Creighton, coming in 3rd and 2nd respectively at the Rainbow Classic. Hawaii won the thing for the 11th time...a record and not a surprise to those who follow college basketball. Winning in Honolulu is very, very can interpret that any way you want :). BTW - prediction wise - I sucked...2-3 (i didn't pick NU's 3rd game) for the Classic.

Merry Christmas...and I'll see if I can find time to post again today...

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Watts Is Electric vs. Houston

Before this season began, I had the chance to watch Dane Watts in the Council Bluffs Summer League. The first thing that jumped out at me was his size. Athletically, he looked like a different person than the one I saw during the basketball year. Only covering Creighton for one season, I didn't get the chance to see Dane Watts without Mono which plagued him for most of last year. The illness sapped him of energy and made him a non-factor at key moments last year. Going into the year, his play was a major question mark.

Fast forward to Friday night - Game 2 of the Rainbow Classic vs Houston. You might be able to call last night's game Dane Watt's coming out party. If not for his career, for sure this season. Dane did everything in the game that the coaches asked him to do. He collected his second career double-double. His free throwing shooting was awful last year. Dane went 5 for 7 at the line last night and has really been solid in that department including the game winners vs. George Mason. He promised me in the preseason that he would change last year's 50% performance and he has.

The Junior from Missouri powered the Jays with a career high 21 points to go along with 10 boards but I liked his toughness on the inside the most. On a night that looked like a loss for Creighton (picked by me), Watts banged the boards and stepped outside equally causing major problems for Houston. His 4 for 6 shooting behind the arc was exactly what the team needed to counter the bombing attack from downtown that Houston featured. The Jays went 10 of 18 from behind the line - none were bigger than Dane's. (For the record Houston went 12 of 39 from 3)

Coach of Houston Tom Pender's style of feast or famine offense allowed the Jays to run a bit more off long rebounds and I really liked the play of Freshmen Isaac Miles. His tough D and clutch shooting gave the Jays another weapon. The Cougars were fun to watch but they struggled when the Jays forced them into the half court. On a night where offense was needed -Creighton showed why many picked them for a Top 20 team in the preseason....depth.

Coach Altman is doing something very interesting this year with his two star senior players. Since the team has struggled with both of them on the floor together, he has split them up. Often times last night, Nate Funk and Anthony Tolliver subbed for one another. With one of them on the bench - there is no question who the number 1 option is. It also gives the Jays and Left-Right combo of first inside to AT then outside to Nate with their offensive focus. It is working so far but I'm curious to see how this experiment plays out in the MVC.

Finally, the Championship match is Hawaii vs. Creighton tonight. If last night's game vs. Nebraska is any indication - expect the refs to be one sided. Hopefully Dana will handle it better than Doc Sadler and have the guys mentally ready for the challenged. Nebraska is 0-3 on the road....same record as the Jays....tonight is a road game with a Championship on the line. The refs aren't going to be Jay friendly.

Prediction: 71-68 Jays. However I was 0 for 2 last night. So maybe you don't want me picking the Jays if you are a Creighton fan. I just don't think Hawaii is very good - in fact I think Nebraska could have won that game if they kept their composure better - Coach included.

Class Act that Doc....

We might have seen clearer picture as to who Doc Sadler is as a man. With his team getting beat badly by Hawaii tonight, Doc flipped out. Mr. High Energy lost control of himself and then his team lost the game. With his history in the WAC- not getting calls was something Doc KNEW was going to happen before the game was even played:

"When I left UTEP and got out of the WAC, I said I'd never take another basketball team to Hawaii," he said. "But here we are again."
That doesn't mean Sadler is preparing excuses in advance.
"If you're mentally tough and block out all the extracurricular things, which I think we'll do, I like our chances,"
- Omaha World Herald

Too bad Coach didn't take his own advice. Down 27-14 with 5:13 to play in the 1st half, Doc got his second technical and got tossed. First, this is NOT the NBA and getting tossed DOES NOT help your team. Its very embarrassing to get thrown out of a college game. However, I think he wanted to get tossed. In fact, was trying to get sent to the showers early.

Before the the final exchange, Doc was overheard on the TV mic telling one official that he was going to get tossed out of the game if the calls continued to go against Nebraska. It was like something out of Hoosiers when Gene Hackman asks to get booted. After a free throw attempt - Doc continued to talk and was then given what he was after, thus getting kicked out.

What happened next, I think, is the biggest deal though. Sadler called over the official who T'd him up and said "Hey Larry, Listen to me real closely - FUCK YOU!". Totally without class, Sadler has suddenly shown himself to be a loose cannon when things are going wrong. His team was being outplayed and with Creighton sitting in the Championship Game - he simply cracked. It was a sad display for a coach who up to this point had done nothing but good as the coach of Nebraska. Being angry is one thing, but disrespecting officials and insulting them personally will haunt you as a coach. Officials are like elephants - they never forget and they stick together.

The final score - a not surprising 80-72 with Center Aleks Maric getting injured in the second half and trying to play through the pain for no reason. Give the kid credit for playing hurt but a coach should have sat him down. A lot more to go in the season for Nebraska but maybe more of a chance to see Doc Sadler embarrass himself and his school.

Friday, December 22, 2006

2006 Hottest News Chick is.....

Brandi Peterson of KETV is this year's winner. She beat out weather gal Andrea Bredow 24-22 on votes in a close race. Malorie Maddox of WOWT, last year's champ came in 3rd.

I had the chance to sit next to Brandi at the Nebraska vs. USC game in California and found her to be very nice. She was very interested in the game and was asking very intelligent questions. I told Brian, the Producer that I thought she should win at 1:45 pm today. I'm 2-2 on predictions here in Omaha. Congrats to Brandi and thank you to everyone who voted on the "Biggie Awards" and who called in tonight. We were flooded as normal.

I'd also like the thank The Reader for publishing this story on us:

You will read a lot bullshit about me on the internet, and that is one site that has plenty of it. I know it comes with my job but people who are gutless and don't sign their names really piss me off. Especially if they are members of the media - which many of those people who read that blog are. You will never find me say anything without my name attached. I stand behind what I think and never run from a fight. I can't stand it when people push information that they have no idea about...but I guess that's why bosses tell me to stay off the internet :).

Oh always - thanks for listening.

Finally Funk's Got it On

"He's Back!"

The Jays have been waiting since the Nebraska game to see Nate Funk light up the score board. Last night, the senior crushed Valpo for 22 points (20 in the 2nd half!) and 4 of 5 from behind the arc as the Jays took down Valpo 68-43 in Game 1 of the Rainbow Classic. One of the those 3's was a Nebraska-esque, end of shot clock prayer that made the entire arena ooh and ahh. It was his night and big win for the team. Up next, Houston and coach Tom Penders. The same guy who said CU couldn't get the ball over half court vs. his team last year.

However, just like the Nebraska game - did anyone else notice that Nate went off with Tolliver on the bench? They work with AT on the floor as they can pound it inside or they can let Nate take over a game with his outside shot. AT took 4 shots! 4! In the game against Fresno he took 17!

This is a major problem for Coach Altman. He must find a way to go inside/outside with his two seniors and get the others to understand how to play with them. AT is a awesome player in the post but for the guards like Josh Dotzler and Isaac Miles, I'm not sure they know where to look for offense with both guys in the game.

It's great to see Nate hitting shots but I want to see what happens if both guys are hot on the same night. How will the team handle it? Who will get the rock first? Who is really the first option? Great win over Valpo - forcing 19 turnovers while committing just 9. They need to duplicate the effort tonight vs. Houston. Nebraska won their game and have a really tough one vs. Hawaii tonight. However, a CU vs. NU rematch is still on the table.

Oh, and will someone please teach Nick Porter how to hit a LAYUP!

Thursday, December 21, 2006

UMass after we lose to App St. - Sad


We riot after a LOSS in the D IAA Championship game but nobody does anything after we beat Louisville at U of L in Basketball. Nobody ever called us smart.....

Hottest News Chicks in Omaha

For those of you who want to know ahead of the curve - Here is the Top 5 Nominees for the Hottest News Chick on Omaha TV

1. Malorie Maddox WOWT
2. Brandi Peterson KETV
3. Andrea Bredow KETV
4. Molli Graham KMTV
5. Kerri Stowell KMTV

Voting will take place from 5 pm to 6pm Friday on the show.

The Holidays are all about Family

MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE! This is my large Italian Family - my mother's side. Told ya I was Italian :)...and that's not even everyone! I'm going back home for the Holidays but I hope everyone gets to spend the holidays with the ones they love!

Welcome to my blog

Night No. 1 for this blog - Thursday Dec. 21, 2006

So I have wanted to start one of these for a long time. I have been bumping around the internet and seen a variety of these - many which look very cool. I thought it might be a cool way for me to get some issues off my chest that don't make the show.

I will warn you that many of these topics will be more over the top than ones on the show. Hell, this is the internet. I might even swear a few times :).

Anyways, tonight is Game 1 of the Rainbow Classic for the Jays. They are taking on Valpo. I will post on here my thoughts once the game is over. I might fall asleep - then I will do it tomorrow. But none the less - welcome to the blog :).