Fight on USC! Beat ASU!
UPDATE: Trojans lead 17-7 with 3:44 to go in the first quarter.
Ridiculous unsportsmanlike-conduct penalty against Sedrick Ellis just now. The NCAA really needs to reign in the trend among referees to try and take all the emotion out of college football with bulls**t calls like that. It happened to Notre Dame’s John Carlson against Duke last week (details here), and this one was equally absurd. Good lord, football is exciting, the players get emotional sometimes, and they celebrate. Big freakin’ deal. Unless they’re jawing in the opposing players’ faces or something, it shouldn’t be a penalty. Let them play, you a**holes.
Also, the BCS “analysis” by the ESPN announcing crew and Charles Barkley was insipid. Anyone who thinks it’s even a question whether ASU will be “in the conversation” if they win out suffers from a failure of imagination and foresight. In this of all seasons, can’t these people wrap their minds around the reality that the landscape changes from week to week, and of course the Sun Devils will be “in the conversation” if they win out? Also, why does everyone just assume that LSU is going to win out?!? LSU has two tough games left, and no one can take anything for granted this season. All the talk is about Kansas/Missouri and West Virginia fighting for the last spot. People, they might both get in. Or they could both lose, along with LSU, and the title game could be Ohio State vs. Arizona State. Or Ohio State vs. Georgia. Or Ohio State vs. USC (!). Lots of crazy things are still possible. It’s just plain stupid to look at the current BCS standings and assume nothing will change.
UPDATE 2: It’s 27-17 USC at halftime.
UPDATE 3: WOOOOOO!!!! 44-17, late in the third quarter.
I think it’s safe to say “Beat the Bruins” with this playing of Conquest. :)
UPDATE 4: Okay, I know the game is over, but how the hell is it “unsportsmanlike conduct” for Sedrick Ellis to briefly and unobtrusively celebrate a sack, but Rudy Carpenter can get in the referee’s face about a call, yelling and screaming at him like a second-grader throwing a temper tantrum, and not get flagged? These refs are HORRIBLE.
UPDATE 5: Trojans win, 44-24. Pete Carroll is 23-0 in November.
BEAT THE BRUINS!!!!
P.S. All this talk about USC needing Oregon to lose to reach the Rose Bowl sort of misses the point, in a certain sense. If USC beats UCLA next weekend, they will go to a BCS bowl. The only question is which one: Rose or Fiesta? Frankly, I actually prefer the potential Fiesta Bowl matchup with Texas to a Rose Bowl pre-match with Ohio State, the Trojans’ second opponent next season. But regardless, while USC may not control its own Rose Bowl destiny, it does control its own BCS destiny, as a practical matter. I don’t think I heard anyone on ESPN mention that all night.
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!
And remember, if you’re feeling sleepy after dinner today, don’t blame the turkey.
UPDATE: Thanksgiving Dinner a la Becky:
‘Twas a yummy feast!! And it’s not over yet. I’m particularly looking forward to eating those pumpkin pies. :)
For the first time since 1993, the Newington High School football Indians won at Wethersfield this morning, beating their annual Thanksgiving Day rivals by a score of 9-7. Woohoo! [UPDATE: According to commenter Dave, the Indians won on a field goal with 26 seconds left. Wow! It was a 31-yard kick by quarterback/kicker Bobby Hemmann. More than 2,000 people were in attendance to watch the most dramatic NHS-WHS ending in many years.]
The Newington victory breaks a six-game Eagles home winning streak against the Indians that began my freshman year at NHS. Overall, counting games at both schools, NHS has now taken 3 of the last 4 after losing ten straight to WHS.
If not for Masuk’s 17-14 comeback win over Newtown last night, Newington would be celebrating more than just a win over Wethersfield right now — they’d also be celebrating a spot in the state playoffs. Instead, the Indians finish #5 in Class L, and they’ll have to be satisfied with a 9-1 record, Newington’s best winning percentage in 27 years. (Details after the jump.)
NHS is one of just three teams in the state to finish with one loss yet be denied a playoff berth. The others are Avon and Jonathan Law of Class M. Twelve other one-loss teams are still alive for a state championship.
Newington’s only loss was a 31-6 defeat at Bristol Eastern on October 20. The Lancers finished 10-0 and are the #1 seed in Class M.
It’ll be interesting to see how Newington does next season without superstar tailback Nathan Pagan, a 5-foot-9, 185-pound senior who is being recruited by several Division I-AA colleges. Coming into the Wethersfield game, Pagan had 1,816 yards and 32 touchdowns on 232 carries this season, and he ranks third all-time in Connecticut for both rushing yards and rushing touchdowns in his career. His arrival at NHS directly coincided with the Indians’ return to glory: they were 13-89-2 (.135) during the decade before he enrolled, then 31-9-1 (.768) during his four-year career. Will the 2008 season, the first of the post-Pagan era, be a return to the bad old days, or will Newington be able to maintain the momentum of the past four years? Only time will tell.
For now, I’m just glad they beat Wethersfield. I think a recitation of the fight song would be in order, eh?
We’re the boys of Newington High
The best team on the field
And we are the boys that do or die
The team that will not yield
(Rah! Rah! Rah!)
With our colors gold and blue
We’re out to win this game
‘Cuz we are the boys that
Fight! Right! Through!
Bring Newington High to fame!
It’s Thanksgiving, which means it’s time for the annual presidential turkey pardoning:
You know, when President Clinton was in office, a turkey had to donate $5,000 to his presidential library to get a pardon.
P.S. The Washington Post has an article on the history of the turkey-pardoning tradition, which apparently doesn’t go back nearly as far as is annually reported. (Hint: 1989, not 1947. Bush, not Truman.)
UPDATE: Welcome, InstaPundit readers! I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving.
Torii Hunter, long the only jewel in the struggling Twins’ offensive lineup, has jumped ship to Anaheim (I refuse to call them the "Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim"–Aside from being geographically incorrect, it’s a mouthful to say, and quite annoying).
What does this mean? Now Vlad Guerrero will have another bat to back up his own, and the Angels will have a fourth spectacular outfielder. This may lead to platooning a DH, or it might lead to a trade (in the article, there’s talk about sending Gary Matthews, Jr. to Baltimore for Miguel Tejada–I just hope that Peter Angelos tries get more from the Angels than just Matthews–not that Matthews is bad, but that Angelos sucks the sweat off a dead man’s balls when it comes to owning and operating a baseball team, so they need all the help they can get).
Also, defensively-strong utility player (though he mostly plays 2B) for the Padres, Geoff Blum, adds his glove to the field in Houston, which lost Craig Biggio to retirement this year.
Happy Thanksgiving, all, and remember: just because it’s cold out doesn’t mean that baseball is over. Baseball is never over. Just remember that while you watch Green Bay and Dallas slaughter Detroit and New York today.