Shall We add 2010?

April 29, 2010

Can the Hawks Win the Cup?

The Blackhawks have had my heart jumping since last year’s playoff run.  Their revival in Chicago sparked people to forget about baseball and focus on hockey.  For the first time in my life, I jumped on a band wagon, and I was seriously cheering on the Blackhawks. Although Chicago was defeated by the Detroit Red Wings in the Western Conference Finals, they showed a lot of promise for this season.

Throughout the year, the Blackhawks did work.  They were amazing this season, even with the loss of some big players from last season.  I was concerned with the goalie position, but Huet and Niemi stepped up big.  All year Chicago was battling with the Washington Capitals and the San Jose Sharks for the best record in the NHL.  I couldn’t believe it.

After the Winter Olympics concluded, I was ready for the NHL to get back on track.  The Hawks had players that had won gold and silver medals, which just boosted my confidence in the squad.  Although they went on a rough skid initially after the Olympic break, my boys were able to get back on track.  Losing the last game in OT, and losing the number seed in the west killed me, but that isn’t a big deal.  Getting the two seed was good enough, and taking on Nashville seemed to be an easy match-up.  WAS I WRONG.

In the first three games of the series, Chicago only managed to score seven total goals, and they lost two of three.  During the regular season, Chicago had won the season series, 4-2 against the Predators.  Being down 2-1 scared me a bit, but fortunately Chicago was able to get back on the right foot.  They closed Nashville out in a wild game six, and now they take on the Vancouver Canucks in the Western Conference Semifinals.

Last season, the Hawks were able to top these guys in the same round.  I’ve got confidence in them that they’ll be able to do it again.  My main concern was the Washington Capitals.  Alexander Ovechkin is a beast.  He just dominated the game.  Washington was the best team in the NHL, and in turn they won the President’s Cup.

But last night, the Caps were upset by the eighth seed.  The Montreal Canadiens took Washington to a game seven, winning the last three games.  Defense saved Montreal.  They only allowed three goals on roughly 140 shots.  That’s unbelievable, especially when you’re playing the best team in the NHL.

Now that Washington is gone, I’ve started to feeling some butterflies.  I’m not nervous, but more excited than anything.  I’m really starting to believe that Chicago can pull this one off.  I don’t want to jinx it, so I’m not going to say they’ll most definitely win, but I feel that their chances have just become that much better.

ESPN analysts picked Chicago to win it all, which drives me nuts, but I hope that they’re right.  Let’s go Blackhawks!

Let's Bring Her Home!

Let’s Go Butler!!!

April 4, 2010

Heading into the Final Four this weekend, I couldn’t wait to see that match-ups.  Butler’s performance prior to the Final Four was as good as it gets.  They took down some of the toughest competition in the tournament, which includes programs such as UTEP, Murray State, Syracuse, and Kansas State.

Then there is their Final Four win over Michigan State (a Michigan State squad that was in the championship game just one year ago).  Hayward led the way for his Bulldogs, and now they’re in the championship game against the Duke Blue Devils.

Some things do need to change before this game on Monday night.  The “mid-major” and the “cinderella” talk surrounding Butler needs to disappear.  Butler may be from the smaller Horizon League, but don’t disregard their talent.  For the last few seasons, Butler’s program has been a top 25 program.  They may have not been talked about like some of the powerhouse schools in the power conferences, but as you all can see, those boys can play ball.

Butler is not a cinderella team.  Butler can match-up against any team in the country, and I’ve got a feeling that they will give their all to the mighty mighty Blue Devils.  They’ll get to suit up for one more game this season, in their home city, in the championship game, and they will be fighting! 

LET’S GO BULLDOGS!!!

FYI-I screwed up

April 1, 2010

Just to let everyone know… these are not all of my blogs.  Unfortunately, I was mixed up with another name I made for wordpress, and I was blogging under a different name.  I posted other blogs on the other site, but I plan to stick to this one as of now.  Excuse me for my error.

If you would like to see some other blogs from the past, please go to mradostits.wordpress.com.  Here you can see my posts after February 18th.

Thank you!!!

Enough About Tiger

February 18, 2010

Tiger Woods has been in the news more over the last three months than he ever has been in his career.  Unfortunately, people aren’t talking too much about his career.  Everyone has craved new information about his personal life.  I think we all need to let this go, and move on to the next step, which involves Tiger Woods making a comeback to the PGA Tour.

On Friday morning (Feb. 19th), Woods will be appearing in front of a select group of media to apologize about his past, as well as talk about his future.  Many people have lost their faith in Woods.  After the initial car crash outside his Florida home, women starting coming out of the wood work claiming an affair.  Tiger Woods’ “untouchable” image was finally tainted.  It’s very unfortunate, but it happened.  Tiger wasn’t perfect, just like everyone else.  Too bad for him that he is constantly in the national spotlight.

After Woods comes out and speaks on Friday, I think the media needs to focus on his future.  Enough with his personal life.  That now should remain personal. Woods image may be tainted, but I do not see this lasting for too long.  Michael Jordan, arguably the best athlete to ever play the game, did something similar to Woods.  He ran around with women, even though he had a wife and children.  Again, people aren’t perfect.  But today, people don’t think of that when Michael Jordan’s name comes up.

Let’s remember that Tiger Woods is the best golfer of my generation.  Woods is only 34 years old, and he already has 14 major championships.  Jack Nicklaus was one of the best golfers ever, and he recorded 18 major championship wins over his 26 year career on the PGA Tour.  Woods racked up 14 in eleven years.  There are still many years left for Tiger Woods.  If he could manage to win only one major a year over the next 10-12 years, he would be the most accomplished golfer in history by far.

I’m looking forward to Woods’ future, rather than worrying about his past.  In no way to I support what Tiger has done, but what’s done is done.  Get Tiger back on the golf course, and let’s see if he can make history.

Get off Peyton’s Back…

February 9, 2010

Heading into Super Bowl 44, I had my money on the New Orleans Saints.  Neither the Saints or the Colts are favorite teams of mine, but I like to cheer on the underdog in a lot of big games.  The Saints have never even been to a Super Bowl until this year.  The team has been around for 43 seasons, and they’ve got nothing to show for it.  They NEEDED a title. 

There was a lot of talk about the quarterback match up this year in the Super Bowl.  Drew Brees vs. Peyton Manning.  It seemed too good to be true.  Two highly talented quarterbacks leading their potent offenses against each other in the Super Bowl.  What more could you ask for?  Well… I could ask for one more thing.

Let’s get off Peyton’s back.  The entire two weeks prior to the Super Bowl, all I heard about was “Peyton Manning” this and “Peyton Manning” that.  Peyton Manning IS an unbelievable quarterback in the NFL.  I k now that just like any other NFL fan.  There is no doubt that he is a force to be reckoned with.  Personally, I can’t think of any other quarterback that I’ve seen in my life that knows how to run an offense like Manning can.

  Last year, The Sporting News named Manning the number one player in the league.  Manning holds many different NFL records, which include his 4 MVP awards.  He has won more MVP awards than anyone to play the game.  He does have credentials.

Anyhow… After the Colts suffered their surprising loss to the Saints, I heard a lot of the dogging Peyton Manning.  Prior to the game, every commentator might as well have been bowing down and praying to Peyton.  They couldn’t talk about him enough.  But after the game, there was a lot of talk questioning Manning as one of the best quarterbacks, let alone players, to ever play in the NFL. 

First off, Peyton does have one Super Bowl ring, which he won 4 years ago.  Now one ring may not be a lot to talk about, but hey, Brett Favre only has one ring, and everyone talks about him like he is the best thing since sliced bread.  Favre is so loved that the referees will even help pick him up off the ground when he’s hit.

Manning has a lot of time to prove himself.  His numbers throughout the seasons are beyond impressive.  He has been selected to 10 Pro Bowls.  He’s also been named to 5 first team All-Pro teams.  He is the all time leader for the Indianapolis Colts in career wins, passing touchdowns, pass attempts, pass completions, and pass yards.  He currently sits at fourth in all time passing yards.  If Manning manages to stay healthy for the next 5-6 years, and if he can average roughly 3000 yards passing for each of those seasons, he’ll be sitting on top of the career passing yards.   Manning will continue trucking, and if I had to guess, he’ll win another Super Bowl at some point.

Jim Kelly NEVER won a Super Bowl.  John Elway lost three Super Bowls before winning two in the late 90s.  So let’s stop judging Peyton Manning for his loss in the Super Bowl.  He’s 1-1 so far, but I have a feeling he will have more under his belt by the time he is done.

The Truth About Chris Lowery

February 4, 2010

http://sports.espn.go.com/ncb/columns/story?columnist=forde_pat&id=4879403

 I recently came across this story on ESPN.com highlighting tops teams, performers, coaches, and not so hot teams in men’s college hoops. I came across one headline that said, “Coach that should take the bus to work.” Their answer was Southern Illinois University coach Chris Lowery.

Lowery is currently in his fifth year at SIUC, where he makes $750,000 dollars a year. I personally consider that to be a lot of money for a mid-major coach. Dana Altman at Creighton makes one million dollars a year, but then again, Altman has been coaching The Jays for 16 seasons. He’s had NBA players come through his system, such at Kyle Korver on the Utah Jazz,  and he’s been to the NCAA tournament numerous times.

Lowery has also been to the NCAA tournament. The Salukis had their best season ever during Lowery’s rookie season as head coach at SIUC. They Dawgs went 29-7, and worked their way into the Sweet Sixteen until they eventually lost to the Kansas Jayhawks. Since that season, Chris Lowery has gone 43-42, and 23-24 in the Missouri Valley Conference.

Many people have given him a hard time seeing that other colleges have looked at Lowery to take over their basketball program. His name has been mentioned quite often when it comes to the coaching vacancy at DePaul in Chicago. Who cares? If they want Lowery, they can take Lowery. Fans and supporters of SIU basketball felt that he was the next best thing since sliced bread when he took the Salukis to the Sweet Sixteen, and I was one of those people. It was a very exciting time. But that’s all in the past. Now, Lowery can’t do too much.

The Salukis are currently sitting at 12-9, with a 4-7 record in the MVC. Chris Lowery has been extremely overrated, and if you asked me, his glory days are most definitely behind him. Lowery went to the Sweet Sixteen in 2007 because he was coaching a team that was recruited my Matt Painter and Bruce Weber. Those two coaches now coach powerful teams in the Big Ten. Painter coaches Purdue, who has been sitting in the top 10 all year. Weber is at Illinois, and he took a team to the national championship game a few years back. Lowery just can’t recruit players like other coaches used too. Players come in and always get hype, but when you look at their production and team play, it’s not where everyone wants it.

I am patient, and I’ve tried to remain patient, but enough it enough. I think if Lowery wants to leave SIUC, let him go. The college could use that $750,000 salary. The state if Illinois is broke, and there is potential for furlough days, and maybe even the firing of some of the staff at the college.

Chris Lowery’s golden days are behind him. Recruiting must be improved, and the Salukis need to get back to the days of their unstoppable defense  and great recruiting if they ever want to make any noise again in college basketball.

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February 4, 2010

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