Wednesday, December 14, 2011

TRE Posts About Stuff

After the Gopher foots season I was able to take all of the ad money from this site to take quite a nice vacation (to the bar).  I really enjoyed myself (4 drinks) and I have you guys and gals to thank for it. (cheapskates)  However, now it's back to the grind (one or two posts a week).  I look forward to your comments (mom and, and I hope this long (so long) and cold (freezing) winter can be a little less painful (pistol in mouth) with the occasional (maybe once a week) post from your friends at

Gopher Hoops

The Gophers have been enjoying a Glen Mason-esque pre-Big 10 schedule as they find their way without everyone's favorite man-beast, Trevor Mbakwe.  Without Mbakwe, it seems that this year's Gopher squad is a mid-table product.  However, there are a lot of things to like and to watch develop this year.  Right now, not including Mbakwe, there are nearly 11 players getting at least 10 minutes per game (Coleman and Ingram are just short, but it looks like they'll get there)

Here are one dope's thoughts on some of the players:
  • Rodney Williams is a beast when he can hang around the basket and not think.  Last year, you could literally see the hamster running in Rodney's head as he stood on the wing and Hoffarber tried to will him in with his mind to break towards the hoop.  Is he going to get knocked around inside during B1G play?  Sure, he is.  He's also going to attack the rim for rebounds and get to the foul line as he flops to the ground like a speared carp.  61% from the field and nearly two blocks and two rebounds a game is sick like Scott Weiland's Christmas Album.
  • Andre Hollins is finding his 3 point stroke (9-21). Plus, he has Dre Hollins on the back of his jersey; which rules of course.  This kid is a freshman and the early returns are impressive I think.
  • Chip Armelin has made at least two or three good plays for every dopey play he makes.  I've both cursed and praised him on twitter.  The sophomore is ACTIVE though and I like his motor off of the bench.
  • That being said, neither Armelin nor Maverick Ahanmisi can shoot a three. They're a combined 7-33.  (vomit)
  • Julian Welch is pretty awesome.  He's scored at least 15 and had at least 4 assists in four of the last 5 games.  There's some funny math in there, but just go with it.  He's brought some leadership at the PG position that was sorely needed.  Suck it, Cobbs.
  • Elliott Eliason is a 6'11" gangly white man with floppy hair.  However, the freshman has provided a toughness and scrappiocity that is much needed.  He has a Colton Iverson-like ability to get tagged with the foul, but he's often in the right spot, gets rebounds and can catch the basketball. Like Colton, Tubby will have a short leash for better or worse and Elliott needs to be able to roll with the punches and keep providing energy.
  • Dan Coleman's brother is a freshman that's earning himself more minutes as is Andre Ingram; who provides some toughness.  I'd like to see more of both.
"This will get me more drugs, right guys?"

Hell on Wheels

This show is pretty awesome. It's on AMC and it is about the creation of the transcontinental railroad.  It has Colm Meaney (Doc Durant) who channels his role in Last of the Mohicans as native-american-hater-guy that will stop at nothing to get rich off of this railroad. Anson Mount plays Cullen Bohanon a former confederate soldier that used to own slaves.  He's hell bent on avenging the death of his wife and he's channeling Clint Eastwood in High Plains Drifter.  He shoots whisky and bad guys and throws down against former slave Common in bare knuckle fisticuffs.  Good stuff. 

There's Natives for Jesus, preachers with agendas, a big crazy Norwegian called "The Swede" and whores with face tattoos.  I highly recommend it.

Josh Willingham

Sounds like it's about a done deal for Josh Willingham to the tune of 3 years, $21 million.  This is a decent price for Willingham and as mentioned in my last Twins post I'm glad they sprung for him.  I still think the right move is to still acquire Cuddyer or Kubel and finalize that trade with the Nationals for Storen.  Right now I believe the lineups is something to the tune of:

Span CF
Carroll SS
Mauer C
Willingham LF
Morneau 1B
Ryan Doumit DH
Valencia 3B
Casilla 2B
Revere RF

Still a little light on the pop, right?  Also, it's more preferable that Doumit rotate between catcher, 1B and maybe a little RF than DH.  Otherwise we have to see the Butera experiment again and it burns the eyes.


JJ Barea

The Wolves love to give 4 year deals to third tier PGs and Barea is no exception. (4/$19MM)  JJ is a great fit because he and Rubio can speak spanglish in the back court and not defend anyone together.  Some might say this opens up the opportunity to move Ridnour, but I think they'll hang on to both JJ and Luke for the time being.  Not to mention I don't think you get much more than a 2nd round pick for Luke Ridnour at this point.  JJ can get hot and shoot the lights out and I like that. Ridnour can do that at times as well, so maybe it's a hot hand situation.  With the Barea signing, it sounds like the Wolves are set.  Here's my drunken depth chart:

PG: Ridnour, Rubio, Barea
SG: W. Johnson, Barea, Ellington, M. Lee
SF: Beasley, Derrick Williams, Dead Martell Webster, M. Lee
PF: Kevin Love, D-Will, A. Randolph, A. Tolliver
C: Darko, A. Randolph, B. Miller (in Jan), Tolliver

Time to get fired up, people!


Friday, November 25, 2011

MLB Off-Season Notes

I know you guys all don't give a rip about my baseball thoughts.  BUT I HAVE OPINIONS THAT NEED TO BE EXPRESSED.

Twins Signings - Carroll and Doumit

The Twins added veteran Jamey Carroll to the middle infield mix with a two-year, $6.75MM deal.  There is a mutual option for 2014 that is vested if Carroll has over 400 plate appearances in 2013.  Carroll is a nice bat to put in the #2 spot in a lineup.  He can hit for average (.278 career) and he knows how to take a walk (.359 career OBP).  He'll be 38 in 2012, so he might be too tired for a lot of night games which is problematic. The early word is that he'll be playing shortstop.  At shortstop he has NO range, but a pretty solid glove. Sort of in the Derek Jeter mold; so maybe he'll get a bunch of undeserved gold gloves?  It would suck to keep jerking around Casilla, but I think he'd be better at SS with Carroll at 2B where he's played the overwhelming majority of his career.  (554 games at 2B, 224 at SS, 225 at 3B - Don't do it, Gardy!)

This is a good move because middle infielders in today's MLB are garbage.  With Casilla and Carroll in the MI, you have two above league average players.  Think about that for a minute.  Meanwhile, 24 year old shortstop Brian Dozier ripped up high A and AA last year and played well in the Arizona Fall League (296/358/454).  You have to think there's a chance he gets a shot at starting shortstop in 2013 and maybe a September call up in 2012.

Can't we play games at 5am?

Ryan Doumit is also a good signing.  You may recall back on 9/28 I listed Doumit in the Poo Poo Platter of catching options the Twins should explore.  The Twins landed him for an incentive-laden one year deal with a $3MM base salary. 

Doumit isn't the best defensive catcher in the world.  He also gets injured quite a bit, so he should fit in well in the clubhouse.  No one likes the guy that never misses a day of work, right?  And as a bonus, Doumit also can play 1B and RF at a below average level.  So, what does Doumit do well?  The guy can hit.  He only managed 236 PAs last year, but posted a very nice 303/353/477 line.  That's a little bit above his career number, but the bottom line is he's not going to hit .200 like Butera and he's going to give you a little pop too.  Doumit should allow Mauer and Morneau some days where they just DH or even take the day off. 


Joe Nathan to Texas

Speaking of old guys; Nathan signed a two-year, 14.75MM contract with the Texas Rangers.  History has shown that almost all multi-year free agent deals for relievers don't pay off, let alone a deal for a 37 year old pitcher that lost 2 mph on his fastball after having Tommy John surgery in 2010.  Nathan one among the best in the league when he was healthy, I just don't think he'll ever get back to that level.  And for the Rangers, who are finally moving Neftali Feliz into the starting rotation, Mike Adams would be a better choice to close.  He's like a spring chicken at 33 years old!  Best of luck to Joe, but the Twins dodged a bullet here.

Cuddyer and Kubel and Capps, Oh my!

With the Type A free agent change, the team that signs Cuddyer no longer gives up their first round pick to do so.  Now the Twins would receive a bonus pick in front of the signing team in the first round in addition to the sandwich pick between the first and second rounds.  Regardless, Terry Ryan did offer arbitration to both Cuddyer and Kubel.  Cuddyer has had a lot of interest from other teams, especially from the Phillies.  However, the Phillies recently traded for Ty Wigginton who has some of the same features that Cuddyer does.  Namely, they both can play a few positions and hit a little bit. Wigginton isn't quite the hitter that Cuddyer is, but Wiggy can play 3B, which is a need for the Phils.  With the Phillies likely out, the Twins' chances of getting Cuddy back improve greatly.  The Red Sox are rumored to be interested in Cuddyer as well though. The Orioles also have interest it seems.  I'd like the Twins to get Cuddyer back, but if it's a 4 year, $40MM type deal I'd just assume avoid him and chase Josh Willingham instead.

Kubel doesn't seem to be garnering as much interest from teams as of yet.  I've read a rumor about the Indians being interested, but the did bring back Sizemore and they are lefty heavy in the lineup.  Last year the Red Sox put in a claim for Kubel before the Twins pulled him back; so there's potentially some interest there.

Ideally, the Twins get one of Kubel/Cuddyer back.  They need all of the power they can get.  As mentioned, I'd also like to see them pursue Josh Willingham.  Rumors of a deal involving Denard Span for Drew Storen interest me as I'm not excited about a lineup that starts both Span and Revere in the outfield.  They'd be about as potent as my dog (neutered) with Span, Revere, Casilla, Carroll and Mauer all in the lineup hitting less than 10 homeruns.

Josh and Ginger Willingham!

Justin Verlander, MVP

Ugh.  The hype-machine for Verlander's MVP candidacy (starting with Verlander speaking on behalf of himself) really did the job.  I'm not one of those guys that says a starting pitcher can't be MVP, but here's the only scenario where I think a pitcher deserves consideration.  It would have to be a season where hitting is down (like this year), and there are no real stand-outs among position players (not like this year) and a pitcher is head and shoulders above all others in the league (could definitely be said for Verlander).

The 2011 AL league average for batting was .258 and the OPS was .730, which is down from 2010 ("The Year of the Pitcher").  The last time the AL average was lower than that was strike shortened 1981.  The last full season was 1976.  So, in the lowest hitting year in 30+ years, we had some real stand-out seasons for some position players.

In 1976, the highest OPS (On Base Pct + Slugging Pct) was Hal McRae with an .868 mark.  (Shout out to Rod Carew for 2nd place with .858)  McRae hit .332 with 8 homeruns and 73 RBI.  McRae finished 4th in MVP behind Thurman Munson, George Brett and Mickey Rivers. Twins starter Bill Campbell was the highest finisher among pitchers at 8th.

In 1981, Dwight Evans posted a .937 OPS with 22 homers and a .296 average in only 108 games.  Evans finished 3rd in MVP voting behind Rollie Fingers and Rickey Henderson.  Only Bobby Grich had an OPS over .900 with Evans that year. 

Here are the OPS leaders from 2011 in the American League:

1.Bautista (TOR)1.056
2.Cabrera (DET)1.033
3.Gonzalez (BOS).957
4.Ortiz (BOS).953
5.Ellsbury (BOS).928
6.Granderson (NYY).916
7.Konerko (CHW).906
8.Avila (DET).895
9.Beltre (TEX).892  

To me, the MVP voting should have been a three horse race between Bautista, Cabrera and Ellsbury (taking into account his excellent D in center-field and epic stolen base total).  Josh Hamilton won the MVP in 2010 with a 1.044 OPS for further comparison.  You might say, well no one as lights-out as Verlander was in 2010.  I would then submit you the following comparison:  Felix Hernandez.


Verlander: 251
Hernandez: 249.2

Verlander:  2.40 (170 ERA+)
Hernandez: 2.27 (174 ERA+)

Verlander: 250
Fernandez: 232

Verlander: 0.920
Fernandez: 1.057

Pretty close, right? Well, Fernandez finished 16th in MVP voting. Verlander apparently gets a big boost from his record (24-4) which is the least telling of his impressive 2011 statistics.  Poor Felix played on a crappy Mariners team and went 13-12. 

It looks like it may be time for me to lump MVP awards in with All-Star game appearances and Gold Gloves; awards that given for all of the wrong reasons. 


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

3 (12?) Days Later Live Blog - Gophers/Badgers

6:45am - Load truck up for tailgating.  Come to the realization that I did not buy shot making materials.  Go to liquor cabinet and pour 1/2 bottle of Pendleton Whiskey, 1/2 bottle of Phillip's Blackberry Brandy and about 5 shots worth of El Jimador tequila into the shot jug.  Make mental note to stop at store for mixers.

7:15am - Finished loading truck, Swansley is here, we're rolling.  Stop at store for OJ, Diet Mountain Dew and Sugar Free Red Bull because I'm watching my figure.

7:45am - Almost to tailgate lot, but I get a phone call from my brother requesting a ride.  We turn around to go get him.  Wah wah.

8:30am - At the lot.  Either we're the dumbest people on earth, or these canopies that we keep buying and subsequently breaking because we can't get them to go up are absolute pieces of crap.  We got it up but it doesn't look right.  If we were architects we'd be fucking fired.  This time we bought the extra warranty though so I won't feel bad when we snap it in half next week.

9:00am - The shots are great.  I'm convinced you can add orange juice and soda to turpentine and it would make a decent shot. "Why are my kidneys malfunctioning?  Who cares, more shots!"

12:00pm - Oops, 3 hours are gone.  Call comes in from my internet friend, Matt.  He's a Badger fan, so I plan on getting him drunk and stealing his wallet.  Our new friends from North Dakota (but still Gopher fans) are there too: Goatee, Beardy, Beardy2 and Short guy (Adam?).  They're all younger than us and haven't had the light in their eyes dim due to multiple Gopher football humiliations.

12:10pm - I put the cornhole game on hold to the ire of TREbro and friends to do shots with my internet friend. This is totally against the cornhole code and I know it.  iMatt proceeds to do a series of beer chugs with Beardy2.  Swansley has videos, maybe I can talk him to add them in, but right now I question his commitment to Sparkle Motion.

2:00pm - Beer: Gone. Shot jug thing: Empty.  Beer slams with iMatt vs. Beardy2 is a 2-2 tie.  Time to head to the game.

?:??pm - ????  There's a game in here doesn't go well.  I do remember we stayed for the whole thing.  iMatt complained about no beer being available and said he misses the Metrodome. 

7:00pm - At a bar downtown...Brothers maybe?  iMatt is with me. I've lost everyone else.  Oh, and I also got to drink with iMatt's friends: former Gopher Jon Michals and his brother Bobby.  Great guys, I hope they enjoyed my talking monkey act.  I remember talking with them quite a bit, but I could tell you a single thing we discussed.  I think Jon may be in real estate...if so, buy houses from him here  I bet he'll tackle you in your new home's yard for free after closing!

8:??pm - I look to my right and iMatt is gone.  He left his wallet at the bar and wandered off.  I go outside and ask the security at the door if "a guy with a red sweatshirt went this way".  Genius.  I go back to the bar and give the wallet to iMatt's friends (I think?) and I call a cab. $65 dollar cab ride later I'm home. 

This could have happened and I wouldn't have known.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Why We Hate Part 3: Wisconsin Facts

Hate week continues with some important facts you should know about Wisconsin.

FACT: The female badger is called a sow.

This is apropos considering the female population of Wisconsin is, well, large.  Consider the following evidence:

Female American Badger (Sow)

OK, so finding the big ones on the internet was tough.  The one on the right has a dumb purse though.

 FACT: Iowa Grad/Wisconsin HC Bret Bielema has a "tiger hawk" tattoo on his leg.

So, dude goes to Iowa (hate), gets leg tat (lame) of hawkey (hate) and then goes on to be the HC of Wisconsin (hate)?  Bielema might be the AntiGopher™.

Badass tat, broski.

Go Badgers? Brandi Bielema: Hey girl!

Bonus pic of Bielemas for obvious reasons.

FACT:  The state seal of Wisconsin is dumb.

There is just too much going on here.  Horn o plenty? Got it. Dude in a sailor outfit? Got it. Anchor? Yep. Pick-axe? Of course.  Gun? NO!  You know who's seal has a gun? F'n Minnesota, that's who.


"Hey friend, coming to the harvest dinner? Don't make me pick up my musket, bro."

FACT: Ed Gein and Jeffrey Dahmer were from Wisconsin.

Two of the most disgusting human beings to walk the earth made Wisconsin their home.  These serial killers both collected human body parts and made things out of human skin. You poor bastards are so bored out of your mind that you put penii in jars for safekeeping.  Not cool, dudes.

FACT: Dahmer tattoo guy is a Badger fan.

FACT: "On Wisconsin" was originally written for the University of Minnesota.

That's right, your school's fight song was meant to be submitted to Minnesota as "Minnesota, Minnesota" by William T. Purdy.  Even more messed up is a modified version of that song is your state song!  Talk about swinging from our coattails, sheesh. Be sure and let us know if you need any more cool shit to use as everlasting symbols of your state.

You're Welcome

Monday, November 7, 2011

Why We Hate, Part 1: A Brief History of Wisconsin Football

'Sup, y'all? So, we didn't get too into Hate Week for the Iowa game on account of the festering wound that had been the season up until that point. Our swagger was gone and, if our hurt pride had manifested itself physically as an open sore, it would have been ejecting a cheesy discharge, fasho. But, now that we've dispatched with the Wall Drug of college football and played competitively against #15 Michigan State in East Lansing, we're ready to commence with Hate Week - Eastern Edition: DIAF Wisconsin.

Some Chinese philosopher once said something about the importance of knowing your opponent so you can beat him, or something. So, before we dive headfirst into the true Hate Week activities, here is a very brief history of DIAF Wisconsin.

For the entire history of their football program, the Badgers have been in the upper echelon of the B1G. Beginning with a 10-1-1 record in their inaugural season, one in which they beat UCLA in the Rose Bowl, DIAF Wisconsin has been an annual contender for the B1G championship. Compiling a remarkable .691 winning percentage in their 18-year history, they rank ninth overall in all-time win percentage according to Stassen. Despite their success, they have yet to record an official national championship; though this can be better understood when recognizing DIAF Wisconsin is the newest BCS-conference team by a significant margin.

Their dominance in the B1G is reflected in their record against our Gophers, as the Badgers hold a 14-4 lifetime record against our beloved rodents. Please click on the attached Excel sheet below for a year-by-year breakdown of the Gopher/Badger meetings.

For Gopher supporters, it is difficult to comprehend the success of such a young program. We have wandered in the desert for 50 years, cycling through one imbecile coach after another, while this upstart team to our east finds paydirt with their first coaching hire, in the great Barry Alverez. We are left to do little but hope: hope that we can enjoy the 18-year run of success seen from this adolescent and hope we can muster the strength to derail them from their destiny of this year's national championship

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Three Days Later Liveblog: IWOA

8.42 Arrived. I overslept this morning, so we've already lost 12 minutes of valuable time to poison ourselves with alcohol to avoid this debacle

9.20 No frying pan. No Red Bull. Day is pretty much ruined, apparently. Got the canopy up though, after a solid 15 minutes of flailing about. 

10.16 JoeDirt from GopherHole gave us the hookup with a hot plate so we could cook teh eggs. He is the only positive to ever come off of GopherHole. Bless him. 

10.58 TRE sleep wasted, already. Will get a pic when he closes his eyes in fractional pass out mode. Just hoping for no puke volcano, for me myself.

11.31 Fat Iowa chicks playing bags with Garrity 2.0 next to us. Hope he dies in flames too.

12.06 Got that pic of sleepy TRE.

12.33 Was told I was too subdued last game to the point where security wondered what was up. Need to explain to Iceman Security that puke volcano happened later. He'd dig those bold puke flavors, you guys.

12.57 Still no Red Bull. Day is ruined.

1.41 Subdued here at SPTG. Siblings discussing how one should be getting drunker, while the other argues he's getting drunk just fine. Brotherly love, you know?

1.53 Packing up while Brother 2 does 12 consecutive shot of watery orange juice and a remnant of vodka. Pretty epic, though.

2.22 At the stadium before game starts. First time for everything.

2.44 Christyn Lewis. Eff. Surrounded by Iowa fans, btw.

3.01 Defense decent. Hope for today?

3.14 scoreless after 1. Offense down 152-55. Somehow still nil-nil.

3.49 DCT may be a man. A 60-yard man.

3.52 Well holy shit. Tied. At teh half.

4.05 Iceman with the brownies. Thanks, Iceman!

4.26 Reverse burn. Well, it was a run.

4.36 Cops in our section, not talking to me. That's a win. Some clown is mocking the cheerleaders and Herky. What sort of chowderhead rips the opposing team's mascot?

4.40 Didn't get booted, turned around and yelled "it was for being too cool!"

4.49 Guy back to standing and jawjacking with security. Chants of "Let's get kicked out!" commence.

5.03 Dude finally got booted for pointing at his crotch and yelling at Herky to suck his dick. Respect.

5.05 Oh, and were facing an insurmountable lead, down 11. Fucking rad.

5.22 Wow. Scored a TD and then got a sweet onside kick. Holy eff.

5.26 Fuck fuck fuck.

5.47 TD. Gray. THE RUN 2. And since it won't last....


6.07 On the field. Winning. VICTORY!

Monday, October 31, 2011


Sweet sassy, Saturday was fun. For three quarters, it looked like a hard-fought effort by the boys in maroon was going to come up short. Improbably tied 7-7 at the half, in the third quarter the Fighting Pantherhawks outscored us 14-3, providing what I figured was an insurmountable lead going into the final set. I resigned myself to a moral victory: Floyd would leave us, but at least we weren't humiliated. I still bear the 55-0 mark of the beast from the 2008 debacle, after all.

And then something magical happened. Like a flying fucking unicorn impaling the rapists from 'Deliverance,' MarQueis Gray emerged from the ash heap of Gopher football to do battle with the unwashed Iowegians. Throughout the fourth quarter, Q was my Jesus. He found open receivers, made some solid adjustments at the line and channeled THE RUN from last year to score the go-ahead touchdown. Add a sweet onside kick, some tenacious runs from Du'ane Bennett and a crowd in The Bank as lively as they've been in three years and, against all hope, Floyd was staying home. Fun times, indeed.

Almost more fun, though, has been the reaction to the loss by Iowa fans. After a Hateweek full of mocking and ridiculing the state of our program, their boards have gone nuclear after the loss. The best is that their assessment of the 2011 Gophers was largely correct: we are an absolute clown show right now. Employing our patented Broken Condom defense, our in-conference points allowed had to be shown in scientific notation and our offense, well, there isn't enough ketamine in the world to numb the pain of watching that farce  for the first half of the season.

Yep, Iowa fanboyz, you were spot on last week: we are the worst BCS conference team. There are no doubt a fair share of FCS teams that would be more than capable of coming into our house, penetrate our hapless team like a piston dick and parade the last semblance of Gopher pride through Dinkytown like a limp, dessicated  fetus. We are an embarrassment to the B1G. We are a blight on college sports. We are an abortion, the worst Gopher team in a storied history of ignominy. And we still beat you.

And how do you respond, Iowa, to this disgraceful showing? You demand the head of your coach. You write open letters warning Ferentz of the dangers of failed expectations. You warn him that Auburn and Tennessee  did not tolerate the shortcomings of their coaches, even those who enjoyed success, and you are of a like mind. Change or begone, you say; you can find another coach to take the place of this stubborn old man.

But you are not Auburn or Tennessee, neighbors to the south. You are Iowa. You will not find a coach more competent and capable than Kirk. He may have his pratfalls, but you are lucky to have him. You can pine for all of the unemployed ubercoaches, but Urban Meyer has as much interest in coming to Iowa as Chris Petersen did in coming to Minnesota. You may want him. You may think he wants you. But the rest of us know that's just the meth talking. You're Iowa, after all.

There's no delicate way to say this, so I'll cut to the chase. Iowa is the Wall Drug of college football. A novelty surrounded by a sea of nothing. Yeah, people come to see you and bedazzle their cars with your swag, but it's because you're the only show in town. Iowa is a genital wart on a choade. The only interesting feature in a place most of us prefer not to look. People of consequence generally don't go to Iowa. You are fortunate to have a person of consequence as your coach right now. Please, please drive him away.

Lest you think this is being written from the perspective of jealousy over your success, it's not. Sure, there may have been pangs of envy when you went to the Rose and Orange Bowls in the last ten years, but that's gone now. Water under the bridge. You see, we Gophers have been the lowest we could ever imagine this year. We survived Tim Brewster. We've got nowhere to but up. And you're still Iowa. And we still beat you.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Hopeless Musings

Seven Years to Kill

Jerry Kill signed a seven year deal with the Gophers after coaching up to this point with just a signed agreement. Jerry Kill is just 50 years old despite all of the issues with cancer and seizures and what-not, so it's conceivable he could be in Minnesota for quite some time.  He was originally offered a 5 year deal, but he's convinced AD Joel Maturi and friends that he should be here longer.  The most important message this sends is one of consistency.  It's time to add some stability to a program that has had a revolving door of coordinators.  To those hoping for a BIG TIME COACH or a return of Glen Mason, it's time to let it go.  A big time coach won't come here and if he did he'd use it as a springboard to another job.  I have to admit after the Brewster debacle, Mason looks better in retrospect.  However, he was also a guy that was always hinting towards the next stop and it's not like he's constantly in the rumor mill to fill other vacancies.

The Gophers need to pin their hopes on Kill, consistency and running a program that has a proven system and recruits from within.  The bulk of this team is made of freshman and sophomores.  They're a sewage soaked dumpster fire right now, but the only place they can go is up.  By the way, don't be surprised if we see more of the cream puff non-conference schedule a la Glen Mason in future years to get some cheap wins.   

You know what Kill looks like; here's a cheerleader instead.

Sparty, Yes?


It's time to give some respect to filthy Sparty.  An amazing win last week against the hated Badgers capped a three game run where they also beat rival Michigan and won on the road at Ohio State. This week they head to Nebraska.  A win here really sets them up nicely as they have Minnesota, @Iowa, Indiana and @Northwestern to close out the year. You have our attention, Sparty, and it's not for abducting small children.  We'll be following your effort against the corn-touchers this week.  Don't blow it, you guys.

BCS Standings and Boise State


TeamBCS Average
3Oklahoma State.9240
4Boise State.8302
8Kansas State.6681

Imagine if you will a world where we don't live in constant fear of a Boise State team that plays 2-3 tough games a year creeping up these standings and replacing a more worthy team in the national championship game.  I don't have a problem with the BCS, per se.  I have a problem with one game deciding the champion.  I don't need a 64 team tournament or even a 16 team tournament.  What I want is a 8 team tournament.  Three weeks, 7 games, and boom: a champion.  We can even still use the BCS to slot the 8 teams!  What about the bowl games, you say?  We name each game of the tournament after a bowl and rotate the big bowls for the championship game like we still do.  This actually creates 3 more big bowls. (mo money, anyone?)  As for the other small bowl games, we still play those and like today they have no bearing whatsoever on the champion.  As it stands now you'd have the following:

LSU (1) vs. Kansas State (8)
Alabama (2) vs. Oregon (7)
Oklahoma State (3) vs. Stanford (6)
Boise State (4) vs. Clemson (5)

Other than Kansas State who has only beaten Baylor so far and plays Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas A&M and Texas the next four weeks (see ya!); these are all very good teams and would make for an incredible tournament. Who's with me?  What we need are some hippies to go camp out on NCAA headquarters in Indianapolis and get themselves blasted by some flash-bangs and stuff.  Something like this:

Mountain Jesus

Mountain Jesus Blessing Skiers

Do you guys know Mountain Jesus?  I didn't either until reading a story about him in this AP Story.  Apparently some atheists with extra time on their hands are mad that Mountain Jesus occupies a 25 foots square plot of land that is owned by the forestry service and leased to Whitefish Resort.  The statue was erected in the 50s by the Knights of Columbus.  No word on whether they wore those funny plumed hats or not.

Some handsome dudes here.
So, crabby Annie Laurie Gaylor had this to say from the article:

"This has huge meaning for Americans. And if you aren't religious it has huge meaning as well," said Annie Laurie Gaylor, with the Madison, Wis.-based group. "If skiers think that it is cute, then put it up on private property. It is not cute to have a state religious association."

This is a totally legitimate argument I suppose, but I wonder what her point is since it's been there for SIXTY YEARS!  If someone wants to build a church in the forest today, I'd say "Hey don't do that, bro".  This just comes across making atheists look bad.  Congressman Deny Rehberg completely ignores how goofy white Mountain Jesus looks and says the following:

"The Forest Service's denial of the lease defies common sense. Using a tiny section of public land for a war memorial with religious themes is not the same as establishing a state religion," Rehberg said in a statement. "That's true whether it's a cross or a Star of David on a headstone in the Arlington National Cemetery, an angel on the Montana Vietnam Memorial in Missoula or a statue of Jesus on Big Mountain."
I'm not a religious dude, but I say leave it be.  Seems like most people like it or use it as a goof.  There has to be something more important that these knobs can put their effort into.

Skiphesians 12:4 "I am the goggles and the helmet and the ski pole of life"

Friday, October 21, 2011

Zombie Bronko Nagurski vs. Nebraska Cornhuskers

Nebraska Cornhuskers, welcome to the B1G.  I hope you're enjoying yourselves thus far.  You and your hordes of fans will have some decent weather this weekend in Minnesota.  It will be perfect for tailgating and stomping the ever-loving shit out of the Gophers.  If you haven't noticed, the Gophers have a lot of problems.  However, like any program, you have some problems too Huskers.  In this preview article, I'll "analyze" Huskers problems compared to Gopher problems.

Gopher problem:  Deciding whether to go through the farce of supporting a team that you know will get destroyed this Saturday or to sell your tickets and sit at home in a dark room and drink whisky from the bottle.  Let's be honest here; the smart move is to sell and drink until you've blacked everything out clear back to Rickey Foggie.  Some of us are suckers though, so we'll show up and look at all the sea of red enjoying themselves as we drink from our flask bottle of sprite and cry.

Husker problem:  Arranging travel and acquiring tickets to get into TCF Bank Stadium.  Do you buy Gopher season tickets and just sell the rest of the games save Nebraska?  Do you buy the 3 game pack and do likewise?  Do you go through a broker or a stubhub?  This can all be expensive.  Which bar do you go to and celebrate at? Will they allow bare feet?

Dirt floor bars are best.

Gopher problem:  Do you play the young freshman QB that looks like he can become a pretty good passer or the junior 4-star recruit that has been at WR and has just a few starts at QB and see how he develops?  I say play both.  Which seems to be what is happening for the most part, so that's good I guess.

Husker problem: Will T-Magic get enough Heisman interest despite the loss to Wisconsin? Where will he end up on the all time rushing list?  Also, what's with this guy's throwing motion?  He could take some lessons from Tim Tebow.  There. I said it.

Gopher problem:  Getting a 4 star recruit to come and play football.  When they do actually show up we don't know where to play them and then they actually don't play all that well.  According to the Gophers have two 4 star commits (OG Isaac Hayes and WR Jamel Harbison)  and seven more considering although I can't imagine why.

Husker problem:  What do we do with all of these 4 star recruits?  I guess we could red-shirt some of them. The Huskers have 2 commits as well and another 25 or so considering.  25 just makes me shake my head.

Can't wait for Isaac Hayes!

Zombie Bronko Rating: 4

This team laid a stinker against Wisconsin and had issues with Ohio State, but they're still damn good.  I toyed with a 3.5 rating considering Crick is out and the defense is hurting, but I kind of love Taylor Martinez and their offensive line seems to be getting it together.  Gopher tackling will be at a premium and they don't really like to do that so much. Four Zombie Bronko Nagurskis would turn the BIG RED into...well, they'd still be red I guess.

Zombie-Star Trek-Husker

Monday, October 17, 2011

Back from the Land of Sulk and Honey

Decided to take a few weeks off there because A) I'm beyond lazy and B) I was concerned of going off on an episode similar to my post-NDSU-Twitter-rage-out where I insisted every Gopher player, coach, booster and that giant turtle thing some Native Americans believe created the universe owed me a hand-written apology and an eightball of crack for the abortion that is this season. But I'm beyond all that, now, and ready to move forward as the bitter and broken shell of a man I am with my Gopher fandom still intact.

In the spirit of full disclosure to which you've all become accustomed here at SGH? we considered selling our tickets to the Nebraska game. As it turns out, our seats are pretty rad and would have fetched a price sufficient to cover the cost of the full season. But, for reasons I still can't explain, we didn't. We could have sold the tickets, bought a year's worth of bourbon, enough Robitussin to clean out an old-folks home and spent the game snorting blow out of the ass cracks of high-class hookers; but we didn't. No, instead we'll be in our seats at 2.30 this Saturday, no doubt surrounded by a sea of red, watching Taylor Martinez sodomize the Gophers in painstakingly slow motion.

We'll all have something like this tattooed on our retinas
by game's end. It'll all seem somehow worse with that pedo
Li'l Red replacing Brutus.
My wife asked me what the hell I was thinking when I told her I was still going to the game and I really didn't have an answer. She reckoned it was some perverse sense of loyalty, that I didn't want to profit by selling tickets to the red horde from the south. That's not it, though. That's the ethos employed by the raging, unwashed mob at GopherHole and, to maintain a modicum of self respect, I refuse to employ any rationale subscribed to by those knobs. Nebraska money will buy as much huff-worthy lacquer thinner as Minnesota money will. Conversely, it's not any real belief the Gophers have a chance at victory. After the Two-Girls-One-Cup-styled affair we saw at Ann Arbor followed by the Brazilian fart porn at Team Fiction last weekend, it's pretty clear the answer to 'still got hope?' is no.

So, we're going to the game and I'm not really sure why. TRE likes to give me grief that I ride a steep emotional roller coaster during Gopher football season: the car hits the peak in early August and then plunges to the depths by the middle of October. It was a shorter, steeper ride this year, to be sure. The one positive such violent emasculation so early in the year provides is the enabling of a sort of grim acceptance: I've now seen how bad we are and recognize we won't get materially better for the next year or two. My choices are to quit the Gophers and get really good at raking leaves on Saturday or blithely go through the rituals of supporting the team and celebrate the few nuggets of positivity as they arise.

That's a pretty shit reason for wasting a Saturday afternoon and turning my nose up at some decent quan; but it's really all I've got.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Bye Week - Let's Watch Some TV

Our poor, poor Gophers.  At first I was kind of mad at the Purdue fans for their boisterous celebrations after the Boilermakers scored touchdown after touchdown on our boys.  Then, I realized I'd be doing the same thing if the roles were reversed.  Think about how good that must feel.  You know your team isn't any good, you've lost to Rice and were embarrassed by Notre Dame, but then you come out and positively smash a B1G foe.  It doesn't matter who it is.  It doesn't matter that Tim Brewster ate or threw away all of the canned goods in the Gopher cupboard.  They won.  Decisively.

As @MattOConnellGI of  tweeted, "Gophers open as 10 point underdog to bye week."  That's where we are as a program.  Things like bye weeks, male cheerleaders and Swan's jogging shorts can score on our defense.  With that being said, here's some stuff about new fall TV shows.

Television - New Fall TV

I usually record quite a few shows on the DVR when the new fall season starts.  I then slowly weed out the garbage (most of it) hoping to find something good leftover (almost never happens).  Here are my brief thoughts on some of this fall's shows:

2 Broke Girls:  Even my love for Kat Dennings can't tip this show into watchable territory.  Be careful if you're a prude and you search for Kat on the inter-google.  It's been picked up for a full season, so someone likes it.  The punch lines are weak and it's pretty poorly acted.  Premise is Kat has always been broke and new waitress chick is the daughter of a guy that ran a Ponzi scheme and is now in jail.  Of course they end up living together (with the rich girl's horse, is selling the horse not allowed people?) I give it 3/10 whatevers. Entertainment Weekly has a 5.7 rating for it for week 4.

"I'm so edgy and street." "And I'm so naive and coddled."

New Girl: The ever so sweet Zooey Deschanel breaks up with her doofus boyfriend and moves in with 3 dudes.  Now Zooey inserts her particular brand of quirkiness into the guy's everyday lives.  This show was apparently Fox's highest debuting sit-com ever and has already been picked up for a full season.  Zooey is cute, but not particularly funny to me.  Jake Mark Johnson plays one of the roommates and he seems to be the funniest guy on the show.  He has a nice drunken meltdown at a wedding in episode 3.  4.5/10 from me, 5.0 rating in week 4.
Oh Zooey, you scamp!

X-Factor: Awful, just painfully bad.  Can't even make a drinking game to it bad.  1/10, 4.4 rating (3rd highest among new shows, lol)

Terra Nova: Even though I managed to dodge The Lost bullet, I bedded down with Lost's evil cousin, Terra Nova.  Being a fan of all things end-times; I was looking forward to a world where everything has gone to hell and people only breathe through masks unless they're rich and have their own fresh air pumped in/created.  Unfortunately, that's like 5 minutes of the whole show so far.  Instead, we're 85 million years into the past where groups of the best and brightest (and maybe some lottery winners?) are sent back to restart civilization.  Even though they drive souped up Humvees on crack they decide to build their walls that are intended to keep out dinosaurs out of logs.  It's log cabin on the outside and Halo 4 on the inside.  WTF?  I've only seen two episodes, but they already did the pterodactyl version of "The Birds" in episode two.  WATCH OUT FOR THE HORDE OF PECKING PTEROS!  This could be a lot cooler, but it's just ok. This one, however, is worth watching and making a drinking game out of.  Terra Nova will air 13 episodes, but has not been picked up for next fall yet. 5/10 for TRE, 3.1 rating in week 4.


Whitney: Whitney Cummings, who I think is also a writer on 2 Broke Girls stars in this one.  This is mostly about her long term relationship with her boyfriend from what I can tell. (HAHAHAHAHAHA!) The thing is though (HAHAHAHAHA!) there's this awful laugh track (HAHAHAHA!) that makes you want to remove your brain from your head with a spoon. (HAHAHAHAHA!) 1/10, 3.0 rating. Picked up for a full season.

How to be a Gentleman:Johnny Drama's show about him playing a dense jock-type has already been cancelled.  No way!  I, like the rest of the world, did not watch.

Free Agents: Free Agents has been cancelled as well, which is too bad for Hank Azaria who I like.  He played a newly divorced schmoe that can't do anything right.  Too depressing.

Homeland:  Homeland is an Showtime series that I haven't gotten around to watching yet, but the word is it's quite good.  I'm looking forward to catching up on this one.  It stars Claire Danes as a CIA agent and Damian Lewis as a Marine that was missing in Iraq for 8 years and has now returned home and maybe is a little terroristy now.  Danes is pretty good and most stuff and I love Damian Lewis.  I usually just call him Jonesy because of his role in Stephen King's Dreamcatcher.  There's also a Mandy Patankin sighting which enables you to bust out your favorite Inigo Montoya lines when the time is right.

Jonesy up to no good.

You killed my father. Prepare to die.

American Horror Story: AHS is a haunted house sort of thing on FX. I've only seen one episode, and there was a lot thrown at me in that 1:10 premier, but it was certainly entertaining.  You have a bald-sharp-toothed-uncle-fester, a guy in a gimp suit, a burned-up-face guy, a chick with down syndrome telling everyone they're going to die, creepy southern neighbor lady who seems like a witch, crazy cutter daughter, cheaty dad, grumpy wife that enjoys the macabre feel of the old house, etc.  People are getting sliced up, old maids are turning into hot young maids, fetuses are chilling in jars of has it all!  6.5/10 with upside.

Bring out the gimp!

Let me know if you're watching any greatness that I'm missing by posting in the comments section!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Zombie Bronko Nagurski vs. Purdue Boilermakers

In 1943, Bronko received a letter from the Bears, asking him to come out of retirement, as they were short of players due to World War II. He agreed, on the condition that he be allowed to arrive after the harvest, and that he only play tackle, doubting he could be effective as a running back. He had a strong season as a blocker and on defense, but trailing in the regular season finale, and needing to beat the arch rival Chicago Cardinals to advance to the league championship, Bronko returned to fullback and racked up 84 yards in one quarter, leading the team to victory. He scored one more touchdown in their championship game win over Washington, and then retired for good.

For this week's match-up I scoured the interwebs (googled) and found  Boiled Sports made me happy because the opening blog post I found has the word "AWFUL" in all caps.  They then go on to list a number of ways in which the Boilers failed last week.  THINGS ARE LOOKING UP FOR SATURDAY! /falsetto

So, Purdue is having their own problems.  In addition, they have one of the worst mascots in college football.  Purdue-Pete is basically just a dude with a giant plastic head and a toy hammer.  He doesn't do anything cool.  He just walks around and swings his incredibly light fake hammer in slow motion.

Your head's plastic. Clap Clap Clap-Clap-Clap
In their first four, the Boilermakers are 2-2 with wins over MTSU and Southeast Missouri State.  They lost to Rice in week 2 and got mowed by the Fighting Irish last week. Purdue does actually have a pretty good running game.  They're 19th in the nation at about 215 yards on the ground per game. They have two running backs that average over 5 yards per carry.  Duane Bennett averages 3.7 ypc somehow even though he's tackled in the backfield on every carry.  This match-up is so epic that the tv guide preview is all futility.

Corey Webster!
There is a compelling storyline though.  If Shortell is in for the bulk of the game again, we could be looking at a battle of the gingers.  Caleb Terbush vs. Max Shortell.  Whoever wins absorbs the power of the other ginger a la The Highlander.  Fun fact: SuperGinger Axl Rose is from Lafayette, Indiana.

Max slightly more red tinted.
Zombie Bronko Rating:

This is a two Zombie Bronko Nagurski opponent. If Zombie Bronko Nagurski invaded Ross-Ade stadium I think he'd start by caving in the plastic head of Purdue Pete.  His corpse teeth would tear through the plastic to the brainy center.  If the Gophers are going to win a B1G game this year, Purdue is as likely a chance as they are bound to have.  We'll see if Coach Kill can get the team prepared to execute a successful game plan.  At the very least they should be able to hang around for a half.

Two Zombies is enough.