One of the most fun plays in football is a defensive tackle who is able to intercept a pass and rumble down the field. The rarity of the moment and the novelty of seeing a 300+ pound man carry a football contributes to the overall awesomeness of the play. Vince Wilfork of the Patriots was able to do just that after he picked off Philip Rivers late in the first half of Sunday's Pats/Chargers game.
The play was important in the context of the game too. San Diego was driving, down 10, looking to get within a score before halftime. Wilfork's INT and subsequent 28 yard return set up New England for a field goal in an eventual New England victory
Perhaps that's why Chargers radio play by play man Josh Lewin (also of MLB on Fox) added in this little jab at Wilfork's ample frame. Doesn't it seem a little mean to go straight to Wilfork's body fat percentage instead of giving him some credit for his first career INT? Poor Vince. I know we like to get on announcing homerism, but while we're at it, let's stop bullying from road play by play guys!
And here's video of Wilfork's return. I don't know about you, but I don't see any "belly fat just jigglin'." It's not like Vince needs to go on The Biggest Loser or anything like that. In my opinion, he's a finely conditioned athlete. For being 325 pounds that is. In fact, I'm convinced New England should hand him the ball to run with more often! Could you imagine him and Dan Connolly in the same backfield?
The Pam Ward Chronicles provided tons of great quotes this week and it was very tough for the nominating committee (aka me) to come up with the best of the best selections. However, after many hours of careful deliberation (aka eeny meeny miny moe), we have brought to you our field of nominees for Week 3. Pam Ward has taken the top spot in both Week 1 and Week 2, but I have a feeling she'll face stiff competition this week... particularly from some fantastic innuendo quotes, mostly from Gary Danielson in his 2011 debut. Also, Mount Rushmore resident Craig James looks to kick start his Pammy campaign with a particularly strong showing. As a reminder as to how this works, each week we'll nominate 15-20 quotes for you to pick the best 10. The winning quote of the week will earn that person 10 points all the way down to 1 point for 10th. Remember, you can vote for your favorite five quotes. Here are your Week 3 nominees...
1) "Les Miles told me his defensive line loves to make plays and they are violent... violent in a good way." - Craig James (via bjoe109)
2) "You gotta hold your water." - Jesse Palmer (via bmaze) on LSU's defense jumping offside... or needing to pee.
3) "Coach, you're up by…almost two scores at halftime." - Jeanine Edwards (via 99_JDK) Boise led 20-9 at the half.
4) "Get ready for the most exciting 25 seconds in sport." - Dave Pasch (via CaptTouchback) as the Clemson team ran down their hill.
5) "A good defensive lineman may not make the tackle but he'll make a big pile of rear ends." - Chris Spielman (via CaptTouchback)
6) "He (Paul Johnson) is unconventional, no, inconventional, no, deconventional in his thought process." - Keith Jones (via sctvman)
7) "Chris Berman, the best analyst in the business." - Beth Mowins (via sctvman)
8) "That has to just drive your nuts." - Gary Danielson (via Powellabama)
9) "I wonder who decided to use 'Mississippi' to count as one second? Why not North Dakota or Minnesota?" - Verne Lundquist (via CaptTouchback) with a question that has plagued humanity till the dawn of time... or when Mississippi first became a state.
10) "Houston, scoring his 20th touchdown on the year, on the ground." - Pam Ward (via MDWDFW)
11) "Not only was the Navy runner untouched by human hands I don't think he could have been touched by a dodge ball" - Mike Patrick (via sctvman)
12) "The ball hits off three body parts. A hand, a helmet..well, a helmet's not a body part." - Gary Danielson (via CaptTouchback)
13) "if he wasn't a quiet guy, he would be a vocal leader on this club" - Craig James (via dhh78) on Marcus Lattimore.
14) "Got his hands on a lot of balls and then a sack." - Gary Danielson (via Ryan Scheb)
15) "Kirk Cousins also an internet sensation now after a speech that he gave at the annual Big Ten media luncheon went viral... has over 110 hits on Youtube." - Alex Flanagan (via Ben Koo) [VIDEO]
16) "Tie goes to the runner." - Matt Millen (via CK29) on an equal possession reception...it's not baseball, everyone's running
17) "It's so hard to win in football." - Tom Cole (via sctvman)
Vote For Your Week 3 Pammy Winners! (vote for up to five)
The winners will come Wednesday morning so make sure you vote early and often and check back for the full Week 4 announcing sked later this week!
On the surface, there isn't a lot that Frank Gore and Al Gore have in common besides their last name. Frank is a Pro Bowl runing back for the San Fransisco 49ers, is 28 years old, African-American, and stands 5 ft. 9 in. tall. Al is 35 years his senior, claimed to have created the internet, has a thing for the environment, is white, and has a problem invading the personal space of others. In fact, besides these two sharing the same last name, I'm pretty sure it's impossible to confuse the two... unless of course you're name is Marty Thom Brennaman.
Now, comes another underrated clip for biggest announcing blooper of the year. Watch and see if you could also confuse the former Pro Bowl running back with the former Vice President in the following clip.
If you just watched the Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Victor Ortiz fight like I did, you are also probably stunned right now like I am.
Mayweather won the fight by way of a fourth round knockout, but it was done in a fashion that left many questioning the legitimacy of his win. You see, Ortiz head-butted Mayweather in the round, and the referee, Joe Cortez, broke the fighters up. Well, that's when things got crazy. Oritz apologized to Mayweather for the head-butt and went in for a hug. While this was happening, Mayweather threw two hard punches at Ortiz's face. Knockout.
The main question here is, did Cortez signal for the fight to be resumed, or did Mayweather clock Ortiz during a timeout? It didn't look like Cortez asked for the fight to be resumed, but he awarded Mayweather the knockout. So that's sure to cause plenty of people to claim the fight was fixed.
And the craziness surrounding this fight continued after it was over. Larry Merchant, who has been an HBO boxing analyst/reporter since 1978, was interviewing Mayweather about the fight. Mayweather told Merchant, "HBO needs to fire you; you don't know shit about boxing." And he continued on.
Then, the 80-year-old Merchant replied with probably the greatest quote from a reporter ever: "I wish I was 50 years younger and I would kick your ass."
Here's video not taken down by HBO from SportsGrid:
The Pam Ward Chronicles are here for Week 3 and the major story of the young college football season is the dominance of Pam Ward. She's taken the win in the first two weeks of the Pammies. Can anyone stop her from reclaiming her rightful throne? This week, PamHawk is in Chapel Hill for Virginia @ UNC at 3:30 ET on ESPNU. All eyes will be on tonight's games between Ohio State and Miami and the huge clash between #1 Oklahoma and #5 Florida State. We will update the Pammies as we can with your comments in the open thread and Tweets to us at AA throughout the day. Use the hashtag #PWAA to send in submissions via Twitter or leave a comment below. The nominees will come Monday for you to vote on and the winners will be announced on Wednesday. You can check out the winners from last week and the full Week 3 announcing schedule below. Here's a few quotes from that bastion of freedom Craig James to get us started.
We're a week away from the opening of Moneyball and despite positive chatter about the movie, some people are not so enthusiastic about the movie adaptation of the Michael Lewis's best selling book about the Oakland A's front office. However, you wouldn't think the A's television analyst, Ray Fosse, would be among some of the more begrudging skeptics. Clearly though when probed on the subject of Moneyball, Fosse awkwardly stumbles through this meandering reply in which he completely avoids talking about the film.
Eesh. Awkward pause, check. Lots of ummmmmms, check. Avoiding the question, check. Rambling on about other movies like The Sandlot and Field of Dreams, check.
We don't really know why Fosse seems to be allergic to discussing the movie, but we'd prefer if he didn't bite his tongue rather than awkwardly dancing around the question. Although Fosse's shtick is being totally aloof about all things pop culture including Twitter, music, television, and movies, you'd have to think this isn't the same old "I don't know what you're talking about" routine given the movie is based on the team he's covered for over two decades.
I definitely want to hear his thoughts about the movie when he does see it, but that would require watching a sub .500 and out of contention team during football season. If only the A's figured out a way to compete despite their limited payroll.[follow]
The 2006 Michigan State/Notre Dame game ended with MSU melting down and blowing a 16 point 4th quarter lead at home due to some of the most inconceivable coaching decisions I've ever seen. While that meltdown was bad, it was nothing compared to what radio host Mike Valenti of 97.1 The Ticket in Detroit had. In this 15 minute rant, among some of the numerous highlights, he yells his voice hoarse, says Michigan State's defense would be better off coached by H.R. Pufnstuf and Teddy Ruxpin and this is all the while bemoaning MSU running the option in "Hurricane Katrina." Valenti's voice didn't last and he had to go home early that day and would miss the next couple days of work. Here's his rant in its entirety.
I was a student at Michigan State at this time and was at this game. Suffice to say, I know a few things about soul-crushing losses... but this one might be the worst. It was the 40th anniversary of the "Game of the Century," and they retired Bubba Smith's number before the game. MSU was controlling the game handily for three quarters when all of a sudden then MSU coach, John L. Smith, decided 5-wide and the option was the best way to run out the clock in an absolute monsoon. Ehh, didn't work so much, and ND scored 19 straight points in the 4th quarter to win 40-37.
I did go to the MSU/ND game in 2007 at Notre Dame where MSU won by a substantial margin. After the game, my group did run into Mike Valenti outside the stadium... at that moment, he might have been the happiest person I've ever seen in my life.
In the newest AA Podcast, we're joined once again by New York Times #1 Best Selling Author Jim Miller from Those Guys Have All The Fun. As the resident expert on all things ESPN, we talked with Jim about the impact of the book and the eventful summer in Bristol. In a wide-ranging discussion, Jim chats with AA about...
-Bruce Feldman's departure from ESPN and what we learned about the inner workings of Bristol. -Craig James' work at ESPN and whether or not he has the full support of the leader. -ESPN's journalistic endeavors and how much it hurt to see Yahoo break the Miami investigation. -The massive, new Monday Night Football deal. -Whether or not ESPN seriously pursued the Olympics. -Details on a possible movie based on the book and the release date of the paperback version.
Somehow, each one of our snafus this week revolve around the Mississippi State Bulldogs. That's the way the cookie bounces, as Dan Le Batard's pops would say. Last week, the Bulldogs lost on a heartbreaker at Auburn. Except, as CaptTouchback observed, ESPN wasn't so keen on letting Mississippi State leave The Plains with a loss...
Last night, MSU hosted LSU on ESPN's Thursday night college football game. Unfortunately for Bulldog fans, that meant a heavy dose of Craig James. Also unfortunately for Bulldog fans, some of their less academically inclined (or plastered out of their mind) students were showcased as well. EVERY SINGLE PLAY CONTS! The tiny, hurriedly scribbled "u" isn't fooling us. My only hope is that the back of the sign reads "I'LL TRADE YA MY SHIRT FOR A GRILLED CHEESE!!" (h/t ChrisCrane27)
But there is one more snafu, although it has nothing to do with sports. This may be the greatest headline in the history of the English language. (H/T @ESPNAtTheBuzzer)
Wait. There's more. Here are the first few lines of the article from Reuters...
For actor Nicolas Cage, making the new thriller movie "Trespass" hit close to home.
Cage, at the Toronto film festival along with director Joel Schumacher promoting the film about a home invasion, said that he has actually lived through the nightmare in real life.
"It was two in the morning. I was living in Orange County at the time and was asleep with my wife. My two-year old at the time was in another room. I opened my eyes and there was a naked man wearing my leather jacket eating a Fudgesicle in front of my bed," he told reporters on Wednesday.
"I know it sounds funny ... but it was horrifying."
A Fudgesicle is a frozen, ice cream-like snack.
Thank God Reuters cleared up the mysterious identity of the fudgesicle. I had no idea it was a frozen, ice cream-like snack. Phe-no-me-nal. That was your week in snafus, next time, be careful out there... especially if you see any naked men with fudgesicles... or if you come across an angry Nicolas Cage...
Sometimes I think Rick Reilly is too easy of a target for the blogosphere. Reilly epitomizes much of what is unappealing with the old school media to much of the new school crowd. He collects a huge paycheck and puts out intermittent columns of irrelevance, living on the reputation he built at Sports Illustrated. The guy has been mailing it in for quite some time now. In one of those columns, Reilly wrote these words about Peyton Manning on August 30th in some sort of all-encompassing NFL and college football preview...
"If you think he's going to miss a start because of a neck problem, you've been chugging paint thinner. This guy hasn't missed a start since 1994 at Tennessee. Do you know how long ago it was when Manning didn't start for the Colts? Google was two days old. Kim Kardashian was 17. Russell Crowe was skinny! If Manning doesn't start Game 1, I will come to your house and eat things that are stuck in your carpet."
Rick should have thrown in that he was last relevant in 1994 (rimshot), but that would be beside the point. Of course, any keen observer knew Manning's streak was in huge jeopardy, so it came as a bit of an odd prediction. (And yes, I don't know why he has to throw Russell Crowe under the bus either.) Well, when Manning didn't start in Week 1, Reilly manned up on his proclamation. Somewhat. He ate popcorn off the carpet in Sun Life Stadium. I'm a little disappointed though, couldn't he have gone to a floor featured on Hoarders instead of a pristine stadium carpet? Watch this video, but don't feel too bad for Reilly - each kernel of popcorn earned him $75,000.