Thursday, October 18, 2007

Prediction Time!

Last Week: 3-2
Season: 20-23-1

South Florida at Rutgers (+2)
I like the home field in this one.

Alabama (Pick 'Em) vs. Tennessee
Naturally, it depends on what Bama team shows up, but I think the close wins will boost the confidence of the boys in crimson.

Florida at Kentucky (+6.5)
Ride the hot team, especially when the Gators' weakness is their secondary.

Missouri (-3.5) vs. Texas Tech
I don't like Tech's D against Mizzou's offense, Gary Pinkel or no Gary Pinkel.

LSU (-10.5) vs. Auburn
Bounce back game for the Tigers, and that defense will feast on Auburn's weak offense.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Rock N Roll Jesus

When Kid Rock was still in the process of making his latest release, Rock N Roll Jesus, he said in various interviews that he wanted to make a "timeless" rock & roll album.

Well, it may be too early to tell for sure, but the little white kid who can rock has done gone and made himself a pretty damn good rock CD.

I have long argued that Kid Rock is among the most underrated artists of my lifetime (up there with The Black Crowes, Foo Fighters and Stone Temple Pilots), mainly because he was unfairly lumped into the nu-metal scene. Kid Rock started rocking the mic back in the day when he was touring with Ice Cube and Too Short. His rap style was similar to the Beastie Boys, and they are among the patriarchs of the rap/rock style. Somewhere in the mid 90s, he "rediscovered my whiteness" as he puts it, adding even more rock style to his arsenal.

1998's Devil Without a Cause was a near perfect blend of Kid's hip-hop, rock and country influences. The label capitalized on his style and the fact that the hot bands at the time were the likes of Limp Bizkit and Korn. Similar styles? Sure. But Kid had -- and still has -- one thing they never had: variety. He utilizes his vast array of musical tastes, and uses them well.

Another long-standing argument of mine is that Kid Rock is more classic rock than any of those "The" bands that had Mick Jagger clones for lead singers and no imagination when it came to song writing.

Rock N Roll Jesus personifies that and then some. Kid has always used any different styles, but with each new CD he has fine-tuned his mixing skills -- he's slowed things down some without losing his edge, he's brought in a shit load of new instruments and arrangements, but now he's gotten the final piece down: lyrics.

Originally, Rick Rubin was set to produce this CD. Well, conflicting schedules or whatever didn't let that happen, but Rubin did impart one piece of advice (and I'm paraphrasing here): we know you're fucking Kid Rock, we get it already, sing about something else.

The Kid heeded that advice, and has delivered arguably his best work yet -- Devil is a classic in my eyes, tough to beat. However, Jesus is great on a different level -- Devil was a speaker busting, loud ass middle finger to the teenie bop shit that was dominating the airwaves at the time.

Jesus is a complete, diverse, toe-tapping, sing along record. What Devil lacked was that something for everyone -- it was a great hard rock CD, but not everyone is a hard rock fan. Jesus is a rock and roll record, plain and simple.

Kid displays all of his sides here, the American Bad Ass shines on the title cut and lead single "So Hott." The Pimp of the Nation boasts his act on tracks like "Sugar" and "Half Your Age." The part of him that wanted to be Dixie-fried Southern boy excels on "New Orleans" and "Blue Jeans and a Rosary." Hell, even two bonus tracks, "Lowlife (Living the Highlife)" and "Guilty" show off his great sense of humor -- because after all, being a rockstar is about having fun, and very few people have more fun than Kid Rock.

Now, he already did this on 2003's Kid Rock, but that album didn't feel like an album at all. It felt and played like a collection of songs put together without any direction. Jesus has a direction, a very true one. For this one, Kid added an introspective side not seen on any of his previous work. Maybe it's age getting to him, but Kid digs deeper than he ever has before. Before, it was about putting himself into his songs. Now, it's about putting himself into making his songs -- and it shows.

Kid said he aimed to make out a rock and roll record, and did just that by being what rock and roll is supposed to be: whatever the fuck it wants to be.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Who's Kool?

Used to be a time this thing was easy, I could just plug in the same teams -- give or take a couple -- for a good number of weeks in a row. Now? Hell with that... at least it makes for great football watching.

1. -- A test this weekend vs. Michigan State?

2. -- Maybe Matt Ryan should replace Eric Gagne...

3. -- What a story, and it could get better Thursday night at Rutgers... or it could come to an unhappy ending.

4. -- Don't count the Sooners out just yet.

5. -- Survived a scare at UNC, but a win is a win.

6. -- Good thing they got a bye between Syracuse and Miss. St.

7. -- So, uh, anybody still think the Cats are a fluke?

8. -- Seriously, where in the wide world of sports was Ryan Perrilloux down the stretch?

9. -- They shouldn't get punished too much for losing with a backup, redshirt-freshman QB.

10. -- Not quite out of the Pac-10 picture just yet.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Prediction Time!

Last Week: 2-7
Season: 17-21-1

Alabama (-6) at Ole Miss
All I ask is for one solid win, please, no more heart attacks.

Boston College at Notre Dame (+13.5)
Just a hunch.

LSU at Kentucky (+9.5)
Trap game.

Oklahoma (-12) vs. Missouri
Gary Pinkel Rule.

Arkansas vs. Auburn (+3)
Must win SEC game for both teams, the difference is that Auburn still has a real shot at the SEC West crown, while the Hogs are just fighting to avoid an embarrassing 0-3 start in SEC play.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

All work and no play make TD...


There are two types of people in this world: those who can wake up early, and those who need about, oh say, 72 hours to kick it in gear should they be forced to wake up before 10 a.m. or so.

I would be the latter... times like 980987. For about the past five years, I have been conditioned in the art of waking up somewhere between 10-1, and going about my day -- be it class, work, lying around in my boxers eating Cheeze-Its and watching "Fresh Prince" reruns... whatever.

So, needless to say, the past week has not been up my alley. A slew of traffic obstacles resulted in my arrival in Alabama coming about four hours later than expected, at around 3:30 Saturday morning. Now, driving is oddly draining for an activity that requires you sit or an extended period, so I was pooped when I woke up later that morning to start watching football. Anywho, had to wake up early Sunday to fulfill the obligatory "look who's back in Bama" schmoozing -- and that's just the extended family here in northern Bama, I haven't even gotten to Tuscaloosa yet. Come Monday, I started my temporary delivery boy job here in the Gadsden area, meaning I have to wake up at the oh so lovely 6:30 a.m. time slot.

I need to get up on this "make a shit ton of money" plan of mine.

Yet another era ends in Atlanta

It was bad enough I had to deal with Andruw leaving, but now John Schuerholz is stepping aside as GM, handing it over to Frank Wren. Oh well, at least he'll still be in the organization as team president. Still, it ain't the same.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Happy Columbus Day!

Yay Chris Columbus!

Who's Kool?

It's official: most unpredictable college football season EVER.

1. - Les Miles' gamble paid off, and the Bayou Bengals showed some grit coming back from that 10-point deficit. Hats off to you, gentlemen... (I smell a trap gaaaaammmeeee)

2. - Maybe the most quiet number two team ever.

3. - That D is something fierce.

4. - Is it a good time to be a Boston sports fan or what?

5. - Good teams win the close ones. So if the Bulls win the Big East, and Florida wins out, think the Orange Bowl officials are drooling over a Bulls/Gators showdown?

6. - Should cruise from here on out.

7. - Cocks' DC Tyrone Nix should be a head coach very soon.

8. - Gotta be worried about Pat White's durability if you're a 'Neer fan.

9. - That's right, I'm putting faith in Gary Pinkel, completely throwing my "Don't trust any teams coached by Gary Pinkel" rule out the window... at least until they prove the theory right by getting shellacked this weekend in Norman.

10. - Whodathunkit? I mena there aren't many teams playing better ball than the Bearcats right now -- in fact, there's only nine by my count.

Weekend reactions

Didn't watch the Bama game, but followed it online. Loved the 1st quarter... and then shit. If it ain't one thing, it's another... can we get just one solid, thorough win over a tough opponent please?

As for the Ravens... you know what? That is Ravens football: ugly, dominating defensive performance, just enough O to win. I'll take it.

OK, a new trend is pissing me off. What is with these douche bag announcers having a one-year memory? Apparently, Florida started everything last year. No teams used two QBs before last year. No team ever lined up a playmaker under center before Urban Meyer. Jesus Christ... Gene Stallings used to line up David Palmer at the QB spot for Bear's sake, it ain't like Meyer was breaking new ground by direct snapping to Percy Harvin. Off the nuts people, off the nuts.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Prediction Time!

Sorry for the quietness around here, but I've been busy with packing and moving and my truck deciding that it wanted new fucking brakes and a hitch installed. But hey, I don't question the Black Mamba -- if Mamba sends me a message that says "hey, new brakes or else I'm fucking these the hell up," well then, the Mamba gets it (my bank account also gets it, but not in such a satisfying way).

Anywho, the early edition of PT! is a result of tonights Kentucky @ South Carolina tilt and the fact I will somewhere on Interstate 81 southbound this time tomorrow. Big slate this weekend, so on with it.

Last Week: 2-4
Season: 15-14-1

South Carolina (-3.5) vs. Kentucky
I picked the Cocks to win the SEC East, I'm gonna stick with 'em. Plus, I like the idea of the Ol' Ball Coach devising something fancy for the putrid UK pass defense.

Alabama (-10.5) vs. Houston
Gut check time for JP Wilson and the offense. Big boy time for the defense. I'm cautious, but not scarred. It's homecoming, and Houston may be a good Conference USA team, but the depth still isn't on par. I think we see a HEAVY dose of Terry Grant, Glen Coffee and Roy Upchurch Saturday.

Oklahoma (-11) vs. Texas
Both teams got upset last weekend, the difference? The Sooners are pissed they blew it. Texas just got plain whupped. This one will get ugly, and fast.

Tennessee vs. Georgia (+1)
How the hell is UT favored? I don't give a shit if it is in Knoxville, that place is overrated anyhow. The Vols' D still sucks, and the Dawgs' offense is kicking it into gear of late. Plus, betcha the Dawgs remember that beat down in Athens last year.

Clemson (-5.5) vs. Virginia Tech
They had their token Tommy Bowden letdown loss last weekend, now the home field will help the Tigers down a Hokie team yet to find its identity on offense.

LSU vs. Florida (+9)
Everything is pointing against the Gators in this one... which is exactly why I'm picking them not only to cover, but to win outright. Death Valley at night is wicked, SEC football is wickeder.

Rutgers (-3.5) vs. Cincinnati
Poor Bearcats, Maryland done went and stole their thunder.

Ohio St. at Purdue (+7)
Good matchup between the OSU D and the Purdue O. The Boilermakers have whupped up on some creampuffs, but the home field should be enough to keep it close.

Missouri vs. Nebraska (+7)
Time to re-invoke the "never trust any team coached by Gary Pinkel" rule.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

The year's first "Who's Kool?" power poll and some reflection on a sad day

First, the power poll I've finally come up with a name for -- one so friggin obvious... I mean, I'm a moron, I've only been doing a variation of this thing for about three years now on three different sites.

Anywho, I've always been a proponent of waiting a month until ranking teams, because preseason rankings only lead to horrible, disastrous, West Virginia vs. Michigan national title game predictions (seriously, thank God/Allah/Baby Jesus/Jewish God/Tom Cruise/Bear Bryant that I do not have money to gamble). But now that we have had a full month of games, the phonies have been exposed and the big boys have started pushing folks around, and the time is ripe for ranking.

2007's first Who's Kool?

1. -- No real challenges, but they have just straight run the fuck over people. I'm more of a passing guy, but damn if I don't love a good "hey, we're running it and you ain't gonna do shit about it" ground game. They get the nod over LSU because their two notable wins (Nebraska, Washington) have been on the road.

2. -- Most dominant team of the season so far, but Virginia Tech was overrated and South Carolina really missed some opportunities. That, and they've done it all (and will continue to) at home.

3. -- Now that the first big road win is out of the way, the Golden Bears could start rolling.

4. -- Because somebody has to go here, I reckon. Pretty good D, though.

5. -- To quote Harry Doyle, "At least, they're not from Canada."

6. -- Good God someone finish them off already.

7. -- Dem boys can score.

8. -- I feel like this is one of those "Tales of What If" episodes of Futurama, and somebody asked "what if one of those wacky EA Sports NCAA dynasty seasons where like five teams come out of nowhere and challenge for the title came true?"

9. -- Here because I think they just got stuck on cruise control and just couldn't kick in back in gear. Also because like 43 ranked teams lost last week, and someone had to be here.

10. -- Umm, I think the win in Tuscaloosa hath awoken the Dawgs.

The end of a GREAT era in Atlanta

The Braves announced today they won't re-sign Andruw Jones. I don't care how sucky he was this year. I don't care how long we knew this was coming. This just plain sucks. Andruw Jones is a Brave, and he should always be a Brave, end of discussion.

Even if he ends up in Baltimore (HA!), I'll still throw up a little next opening day when he takes center field in another uniform. Go to hell AOL/Time Warner, go to fucking hell.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Weekend roundup

One word: pathetic.

That was my original idea for this week's WR, as I decided I should only put as much effort into talking about my teams as they did in playing this weekend's games. Instead, I feel like ranting a bit.

Alabama looks miserable in a 21-14 loss to FSU

And miserable may be the biggest understatement in history.

Where do I even begin? The absolutely putrid 1st half? The 89 yards rushing? Terry Grant getting only nine carries? John Parker Wilson looking abysmal until the last few minutes again?

Did they even want to play Saturday? It was evident Florida State showed up to play football, and that we showed up to... fuck, enjoy lovely Jacksonville? Blown coverages, poor tackling, boneheaded penalties, people half-assing plays... it was all there.

Where the fuck was Lionel Mitchell? Marquis Johnson couldn't cover a wheelchair-riding old lady on Saturday, let alone a WR. Why was there no talk about this by CBS? They announced Mitchell as the starter, and then he wasn't to be seen all game, you think that's something the viewers might want to know guys?

It makes me sick when a team plays that poorly. It's one thing to lose, it's another to look like you don't give a damn doing it.

Ravens look equally pathetic in loss to Browns

Jesus, Mary and Joseph. When did the Ravens forget how to defend the pass? I mean, seeing Samauri Rolle get burnt by Steve Smith is one thing, but Braylon Edwards making Chris McAlister his bitch? Dude, what the fuck?

Again, this looked like a team who didn't care that they were playing a football game. They didn't looked all that bad, McNair threw for over 300 yards, McGahee rushed for over 100... but they just looked uninspired.

What a shitty football weekend.