Archive for the ‘Basketball’ Category

I thought I’d seen and heard it all … But then I read this, and listened to the interview.  Ladies and Gentlemen, Louisiana State University is now a Micro-Brewery, that’s right, now instead of bringing your own beer to the tailgate, or mixing your own shine; you will now be able to experience Saturday in Death Valley full of LSU’s own home-brewed BEER, Name To Be Determined.

Just remember everyone, this is for educational purposes only, and not for the purpose of obtaining inebriation.For the record, I think that holding Collegiate classes in a Micro-Brewery is an Awesome yet Very Very Bad idea.

How many athletes will be allowed to register for Micro-Brewing 101 at a time? And in season?

UPDATED 7/22/11

Bloomberg Business Week weighs in http://www.businessweek.com/ap/financialnews/D9OJLKN82.htm 

The News Star gives their Nickles worth http://www.thenewsstar.com/article/20110721/OPINION01/107210314

 
Posted: Wednesday, 20 July 2011 3:21PM

LSU to brew & sell own brand of beer

Chris Miller Reporting

Given LSU’s reputation as a party school, it’s hard to believe this is a new thing, but the school this fall will begin selling its own line of beer, crafted by students, with the help of a Baton Rouge micro-brewery.

Tin Roof brewing owner William McGehee says the LSU-themed beer is brewed with Tiger tailgaters in mind.

“It’s going to be a light and crisp refreshing blond ale,” said McGehee.  “It’s hot down here at least nine months out of the year.”

Tin Roof Brewing Company owner William McGehee:

http://www.wwl.com/image/singleshot_audio_player/single_shot_audio_player.swf?episodeXML=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wwl.com%2Fplayer_episode_xml.php%3FepisodeId%3D5390773%26noOfEpisodes%3D100%26collectionId%3D&styleXML=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wwl.com%2Fimage%2Fsingleshot_audio_player%2Fsingle_shot_audio_styles.xml&autoPlay=no&mute=no&embed=yes

But the purpose of this pilsner, says McGehee, is not inebriation, but education.

“Some of the professors from the food science department are going to hold classes over at the brewery,” McGehee said.  “We just wanted to teach, I guess share, our passion for beer.”

McGehee says they will also offer internships for students wanting to learn more about the business.  There’s no official roll-out date yet, but plans are to get it on store shelves during football season.

Several LSU fans made suggestions for a name for the LSU beer on WWL Radio’s  Facebook page.

LSBrew, The Golden Beer from Tigerland, Tiger Bait, and Tiger Golden, were a few of the suggested brand names for the beer.

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According to the Miami Herald, not only did the Miami Heat win the NBA Championship, but they did it in 6 Games last night; and you can buy the Championship apparel at Macy’s. So I guess it’s time for all those Heat-haters to back off since the Dynasty has begun!

Or NOT!!!

I wrote it moments after John Kuester was Fired on June 5th, and now on June 7th, NBA League Sources are reporting that Detroit Pistons greats Isiah Thomas, and Bill Laimbeer on the short list to be the next Head Coach of the storied franchise.  If you feel the need to have someone else tell you what I’ve already told you, than here, here’s my ORIGINAL post, and then ESPN’s report from this evening.

Original Posting from 6/5/11:

https://nachosaddpeppers.wordpress.com/2011/06/05/pistons-fire-john-kuester-hire-isiah-thomas-and-bill-laimbeer/

ESPN Article from 6/7/11:

Updated: June 7, 2011, 9:35 PM ET

Sources: Isiah Thomas on Pistons’ list

  • By Chris Broussard

ESPN The Magazine

 

While Knicks fans fret about the possibility of Isiah Thomas returning to New York, theDetroit Pistons are considering Thomas for their vacant head coaching position, according to league sources.

Thomas is not the leading candidate, sources say, but he is on Detroit’s short list along with Mike Woodson, Kelvin Sampson and his former Pistons teammate Bill Laimbeer.

Thomas, currently the head coach at Florida International University, made headlines this past weekend after the Knicks announced on Friday that Donnie Walsh would not return as the club’s president and general manager. Because of Thomas’ close relationship with Knicks owner James Dolan, there was speculation that Thomas could regain control of the Knicks.

Sources close to the Knicks’ situation insist that Thomas will not be re-hired as the team’s president or general manager and Thomas told ESPNNewYork.com’s Ian O’Connor on Friday that he has “no desire to return” to the Knicks as president or as Walsh’s replacement.

Thomas served as the New York’s president in a controversial reign from 2003-2008 that left him among the most hated sports figures in recent New York history.

That is not the case, however, in Detroit, where Thomas led the Pistons to back-to-back championships in 1989 and 1990. Widely regarded as the greatest player in franchise history, the Hall of Famer could return to a club that has suffered through three straight losing seasons.

While Thomas’ performance in the Knicks’ front office left much to be desired, he has enjoyed success as a coach. He led the Indiana Pacers to three consecutive playoff appearances from 2000-2003 and helped develop Jermaine O’NealJalen Rose and Ron Artest into stars. It’s that success with young players that has the Pistons intrigued, according to sources.

In 2002, Thomas led the Pacers to a 34-15 start and was the coach of the Eastern Conference in the All-Star Game. However, the Pacers finished poorly and were eliminated in the first round for the third straight year, leading to Thomas’ firing.

After joining the Knicks as team president, Thomas took over the club’s coaching duties at the start of the 2006-2007 season. Over the next two years, his Knicks finished a disappointing 56-108.

Thomas, sources say, has been longing to return to the NBA. A return to Detroit would serve as a reunion with his close friend and former Hall of Fame backcourt mate, Joe Dumars, the Pistons’ president.

Chris Broussard covers the NBA for ESPN The Magazine.

The Pistons under the New Ownership of Tom Gores have Fired Head Coach John Kuester. By all accounts Kuester is a Great person and knowledgable basketball person. However, he has shown an inability to control his players, rather allowing his players to control him. This is why Kuester has now lost his 1st but likely not his last NBA Head Coaching Job.

The task facing Joe Dumars now is to find a replacement for Kuester who will help him and New Owner Tom Gores restore the Pistons to the Glory days of Chuck Daly and Larry Brown, when Championships were a way of life at the Palace. The list will be a short one, and sure to be on it will be 2 of Daly’s Piston legends in the persons of Isiah Thomas and Bill Laimbeer.

Isiah in order to take this job will be required to do 2 things … 1, he must be willing to take direction from Dumars and not be in control of player personnel acquisitions … 2, he must once again gilt the New York Knicks, something he has become well accustomed to doing. His coaching record speaks to his possessing the credentials to rebuild the Pistons … http://www.basketball-reference.com/coaches/thomais01c.html

Laimbeer on the other hand if he’s to have a role, is likely best suited to be the Lead Assistant at this point. Yes he won Championships in the WNBA, but he’s no better than Kuester at this point in his career when it comes to being an NBA Head Coach, and the Pistons need someone with an NBA Head Coaching Resume.

Detroit Free Press coverage of the Kuester Firing: http://www.freep.com/article/20110605/SPORTS03/110605013/Pistons-fire-coach-John-Kuester?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE

The Mavs are absolutely taking it to the Thunder tonight in Game 3 of the 2011 NBA Western Conference Finals. The worst part of this is that the Thunder’s own marketing department is fueling the Mavs energy. In an attempt to boost the Home Court effect, the Thunder marketing team asked all fans to wear “Blue” which is in fact one of their team colors. However it also happens to be the color of the Mavs road jerseys, the Thunder are in “White” tonight. This looks like a home game for the Mavs, and they’re playing like it.

Can’t wait to see a Mark Cuban NBA Finals!!!

R.I.P. Tractor Traylor … Thanks for the Memories!!!


Former Michigan and NBA player Robert (Tractor) Traylor has died. He was 34.

Police in San Juan, Puerto Rico, said in a released statement the Detroit native was found dead today on the bedroom floor of his oceanfront apartment. Police and the Bayamon Cowboys basketball team said he had been missing for a few days and apparently died from a heart attack.

The Cowboys said Traylor was injured and had not been playing. They suspended their game tonight because of his death.

“We are saddened to hear about the loss of a former student-athlete, Robert Traylor,” U-M athletic director Dave Brandon said in a released statement. “Our sympathies go out to his family during this difficult time.”

The 6-foot-8, 300-pound Traylor was one of several star U-M players, including Chris Webber and Maurice Taylor, given large sums of money by booster Ed Martin. The scandal cost coach Steve Fisher his job and saddled the Wolverines’ program with crippling major violations.

Part of a highly touted recruiting class that arrived in 1995, Traylor played three seasons with the Wolverines. He was named the NIT’s most valuable player in 1997 and averaged 16.2 points and 10.1 rebounds the following season, when Michigan won the inaugural Big Ten tournament.

Dugan Fife, who played with Traylor for a season at Michigan, described him as soft-spoken and selfless.

“He loved putting on that Michigan jersey,” Fife said. “I was disappointed I only got to play one year with him because of the kind of guy he was. … Never complained about playing time, never complained about getting the ball.”

Of course, what everyone remembers about Traylor was his size — including his unusually large hands and feet.

“I remember shaking his hand for the first time,” Fife said. “I could put my foot, with a shoe on, inside his shoes.”

He was drafted by the Dallas Mavericks with the sixth pick in 1998 but was traded to the Milwaukee Bucks in a deal for Dirk Nowitzki. He spent seven years in the NBA, also playing for Cleveland, Charlotte and New Orleans. He averaged 4.8 points and 3.7 rebounds in 438 NBA games.

Traylor had surgery on his aorta in 2006 and subsequently left the NBA.

He later served time for tax troubles. A judge had delayed his sentence so Traylor could play for an Italian team.

Bayamon Cowboys manager Jose Carlos Perez told the Associated Press that Traylor had been talking by phone to his wife in Chicago today when the connection suddenly cut off. She called team officials, and they checked on him, Perez said.

“He was a leader of the team,” he said. “He was very, very friendly. He got along very well with everyone. The fans loved him, idolized him.”

Traylor had been playing with a team in Veracruz, Mexico, before he moved to Puerto Rico in mid-March, Perez said.

“His game was one of a lot of strength, a lot of defense,” he said.

Traylor broke into Detroit Murray-Wright’s varsity lineup as one of five freshman starters for a team that was 2-15 in 1991-92.

Earl Moore had been George (Baby) Duncan’s assistant and replaced him after Duncan died that season. Moore remained through Traylor’s career at Murray-Wright as new coach Robert Smith’s assistant.

“He knew he had a bad heart,” Moore said. “They did go into the hospital, and they did do something to it, but they told him he still wasn’t 100%. We all knew about it. I heard he was supposed to go back in and they were going to do some more surgery.

“He was a nice guy. He was a very mannerable kid. He did everything you asked him to do. That’s the reason why he want so far. His health conditions really stopped him. He was trying to get back to the NBA. He was supposed to go back to Cleveland, but they wouldn’t mess with him because of his heart condition. That’s why he went back overseas.”

Smith, Traylor’s coach his last three years in high school, said: “He was a good guy; he was a true perfect gentleman. His grandmother had done a good job raising him. He was very easy to coach.

“He had a good heart. He had a lot of determination. He wanted to be a good basketball player. Of course, it was hard for him carrying all that weight, but he was a person, too.’’

Traylor won the 1995 Mr. Basketball award his senior season, but he was better his junior year when he led Murray-Wright to both the Detroit Public School League and Class A state championships, beating two-time defending state champ Detroit Pershing in both games.

He had 15 points and 12 rebounds in the state championship and, before that, made all nine of his shots for 22 points and 16 rebounds in the PSL final. With Murray-Wright leading by two points with less than a minute to play, Traylor was bumped and, as he fell to the ground, tossed the ball over his shoulder and scored for a four-point lead.

Indiana basketball coach Tom Crean, a former Michigan State assistant, tweeted fond remembrances of Traylor today:

“Sad, sad news to hear about Robert Traylor. I had followed him since the 9th grade and recruited him while at Pittsburgh. At Michigan State we battled against him and he might have been the most time consuming and mind challenging matchup we ever faced and we as coaches weren’t even playing. He had great feet and hands and a very soft touch.

“All in all with Robert, I won’t remember the scrutiny and clouds of controversy he dealt with as a player or the trade for Dirk. I won’t remember how long he played or mistakes he made. I will remember the aura around him and how kids looked up to him.”

Detroit attorney Steve Fishman, a friend of Traylor’s who also represented him during his legal troubles, said Traylor often worked with him at youth basketball camps.

“He was a gentle giant,” Fishman told the AP today. “There were two things about him that really stood out from other athletes of this day and age: He never complained and always took responsibility for anything he ever did.”

Fishman downplayed Traylor’s size, saying the former NBA player was “just a huge person.”

“If he starved himself in the Gobi Desert, he would still weigh 270 pounds,” Fishman said.

Fishman said Traylor’s aorta troubles were discovered during an NBA physical, causing teams to shy away.

The attorney also bristled at questions about Traylor’s connection to Martin, who died in 2003 after pleading guilty to conspiracy to launder money. Martin had told federal prosecutors that he took gambling money, combined it with other funds and lent $616,000 to Traylor and other players.

“Any player that came from the circumstances Robert Traylor came from would have taken money from Ed Martin or anybody else,” he said. “He was not a child of privilege.”

Perez said Traylor’s survivors include his wife and two sons.

Free Press sports writers Mick McCabe and Mark Snyder contributed.

Tressel MUST be Fired …

Wins MUST be Forfeited …

Players MUST be Declared Ineligible …

Ohio State Must be Charged and Found Guilty of Having a Lack of Institutional Control …

50 Cars MUST be Returned or Paid for …

Yes, that’s right 50 cars, and we’re not talking about 25-year-old used cars, we’re talking about Brand New Chrysler 300M’s and better. Wherever the story of Jim Tressel and the Buckeyes ends, it is clear to all that corruption has taken a strangle hold over the University’s Athletic Department and it all stems from the Football Program. One or two cars, and you say “Well it was just those guys”, FIFTY cars, and now you must say “It’s the whole program”.

http://sports.espn.go.com/ncf/news/story?id=6499662

Updated: May 7, 2011, 10:15 AM ET

Report: Ohio State faces more scrutiny

Associated Press

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio State’s director of compliance is reviewing at least 50 car sales to Buckeyes athletes and relatives to see if they met NCAA rules, The Columbus Dispatch reported Saturday.

The newspaper reported that a salesman who received game passes from Ohio State athletes handled many of the deals at two different dealerships. Ohio State has since taken the salesman, Aaron Kniffin, off the pass list.

Athletes are prevented from receiving special deals not available to other students. They are not permitted to trade autographs for discounts. Both dealerships display signed Ohio State memorabilia in their showrooms.

 One car, a 2-year-old Chrysler 300 with fewer than 20,000 miles, was titled to then-sophomore defensive player Thaddeus Gibson in 2009. Documents show the purchase price as $0. Gibson said he did not know why the title showed a zero for the purchase price and said he was still paying for the car.

State law requires dealers to report accurate information about all car sales for tax purposes.

School officials have seen no evidence of players getting special treatment in vehicle sales, Douglas Archie, associate athletic director for compliance, said in a statement Saturday.

“Consistent with our standard procedures, we are nevertheless reviewing these sales to assure ourselves that our policies were adhered to,” he said.

Quarterback Terrelle Pryor‘s mother and brother also purchased cars from the dealerships. Kniffin loaned his own car to Pryor for a three-day test drive to Pryor’s home in Jeannette, Pa.

Kniffin and the owner of one of the dealerships he worked for, Jason Goss, have attended seven football games as guests of players, including the 2007 national championship game and the 2009 Fiesta Bowl.

Ohio State already has five players — including Pryor — serving five-game suspensions for accepting improper benefits from a tattoo parlor. The NCAA is investigating coach Jim Tressel, also suspended for five games, for knowing about the benefits but not telling superiors.
Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press

With the Drafting of Heisman Trophy Running Back Mark Ingram in the 1st Round of the 2011 NFL Draft, 28th Overall; the New Orleans Saints have all but confirmed what many suspected … Reggie Bush will be a former Saint when the 2011 Season starts.  It has long been known that the only way for Bush to return would be to negotiate a new contract for a much lower $$$ figure, something he has been unwilling to do, and rightfully so. Bush has given everything of his being to the Saints organization, he embraced the community when nobody else did (even before Drew Brees adopted the city), and he gave his body to the team every chance he got, even if it often meant endangering his career to pick up an extra acrobatic yard. Yet this is a business, and it is thus that Who Dat Nation THANKS Bush for his years of service, and wishes him well wherever he goes (Seattle with his former USC Head Coach Pete Carroll???).

Bush posted the following to his Twitter account as the 1st Round of the Draft ended, surely a foreshadowing of what is about to become official:

Unless of course he was talking about the Hornets losing to his hometown Lakers to tonight, and being eliminated in 6 games in the 1st Round of the NBA Playoffs?!?!?! Time will certainly tell!!!

That was Thursday, this is Saturday:  http://content.usatoday.com/communities/thehuddle/post/2011/04/sean-payton-id-be-surprised-if-reggie-bush-leaves-saints/1#Close 

Expect Pierre Thomas to be Traded or Cut despite having signed a new contract after the season. That new 4 yr deal only means that anyone trading for him doesn’t need to worry about re-signing or extending him, he’s locked in at what was a hometown discount to stay a Saint. Bush, Ivory, and Ingram are the trio that will make-up the Saints Backfield in 2011!!!

The Chicago Cubs have taken the Century old Battle with a Billy Goat to an all-time low. Now the Cubs organization not just its fans have gone on the offensive by attacking the VCU Rams Men’s Basketball team. The Cubs have invited Rams Coach Shaka Smart to sing at during a Cubs game at Wrigley Field this season, and Smart has unwittingly said he would accept if such an invitation is ever made. Yes he is a lifelong Cubs fan, however there is no ignoring the fact that The Cubs have attacked the Goat family as they sit on the cusp of history, Championship history … Cubs Fail!!!


Cubs want Shaka Smart to sing at game

ESPNChicago.com

The Chicago Cubs plan to reach out to VCU coach Shaka Smart and Butler coach Brad Stevens after the NCAA tournament to invite them to sing “Take Me Out To The Ballgame” during the seventh inning stretch at Wrigley Field.

For Smart, the experience likely will tug at his heartstrings as he remembers the times his grandfather, Walter King, took him to Wrigley as a child. Smart said that King, who is reportedly hospitalized in Chicago with failing kidneys, may be in his last days.

“My grandfather unfortunately is probably in his last days with us,” Smart said Monday on “The Waddle & Silvy Show” on ESPN 1000. “But some of my fondest memories with him are going to Wrigley Field, sitting on the first base side trying to catch some foul balls.”

Those memories made Chicago feel like a second home to Smart, who is from Madison, Wis.

“Chicago is my favorite city in the whole country, and I’ve spent a lot of time in the city of Chicago as a kid,” Smart said. “It was kind of a second home for me.

“I’m a big Cubs fan, probably been to — conservatively — 50-60 Cubs games over the years. I once caught a Ryne Sandberg foul ball at my grandfather’s feet. So I’m a big Cubbies fan.”

Smart and Stevens face off in an NCAA semifinal on Saturday, and Smart is under the impression he may have to win to earn an invite to throw out a first pitch or sing at Wrigley.

“I would never turn that opportunity down, but I think we have to win a little bit more to get that offer,” he said. “I would love to do it. I love Wrigley, there’s no place I’d rather be to watch a ballgame.”

Cubs spokesman Peter Chase told ESPNChicago.com that Smart already has earned the invitation, and for Stevens, it will be an encore performance after singing last year following a NCAA title game appearance for the Bulldogs.

“We are aware of Coach Smart’s love for the Cubs and plan to reach out to him after the tournament,” Chase said. “VCU alum [and Cubs reliever] Sean Marshall has been keeping in touch with the athletic department as well.

“It will be cool to see two Cubs fan coaches face off in the Final Four on Saturday, as Butler Coach Brad Stevens is a Cubs fan as well.”

The Cubs won’t have to wait long for Smart’s answer.

“Well I will be there if I get the invite,” Smart said. “You can book that.”

http://sports.espn.go.com/chicago/mlb/news/story?id=6267599

There is no need to Blog any further other than to simply share the following: http://sports.espn.go.com/ncaa/news/story?id=6254572

Ralph Nader: Replace scholarships

Associated Press

WASHINGTON — Consumer advocate Ralph Nader is calling for the elimination of college athletic scholarships, saying the move is necessary to “de-professionalize” college athletes.

“As we near the exciting conclusion of ‘March Madness’ — which would more accurately be described as the 2011 NCAA Professional Basketball Championships — it’s time we step back and finally address the myth of amateurism surrounding big-time college football and basketball in this country,” said Nader, whose League of Fans is proposing that the scholarships be replaced with need-based financial aid. The Associated Press obtained a copy of the proposal Thursday, ahead of its official release.

“An entire industry has developed in the youth sports arena — club teams, personal trainers, etc. — to prey on families’ dreams of an athletic scholarship.

— Ralph Nader, on eliminating college scholarships for athletes

NCAA spokesman Bob Williams said that referring to college athletes as professionals defies logic.

“They are students, just like any other student on campus who receives a merit-based scholarship,” he said.

Nader, a former presidential candidate, argued that his plan would also help reduce the “win-at-all-costs” mentality in high schools, by reducing the incentive of college scholarships.

“An entire industry has developed in the youth sports arena — club teams, personal trainers, etc. — to prey on families’ dreams of an athletic scholarship,” he said. “The lure of the elusive athletic scholarship is the primary — sometimes the only — marketing tool these youth sports entrepreneurs use.”

He said he would try to gin up support for his proposal from university presidents, Capitol Hill and the Education Department

“We’ll use all the levers,” Nader said. “We’ll use the parents of athletes who’ve been mistreated and sick, and forced to play when they’re injured.”

Nader added that he hadn’t yet canvassed Capitol Hill, but figured he’d find lawmakers who are concerned about the way college athletes are treated.

The Drake Group, a college athletic watchdog organization, has called for replacing one-year athletic scholarships with need-based financial aid, or with multiyear athletic scholarships that extend to graduation.

Nader said that colleges should either integrate athletics into the educational mission by eliminating college scholarships, or, “openly acknowledge the professionalism in big-time college sports, remove the tax-exempt status currently given to athletic departments, and make universities operate them as unrelated businesses.”

The longtime former head of the NCAA, Walter Byers, has called for paying college athletes.

Nader said his proposal was the opening initiative of a rejuvenated League of Fans, a sports reform group that has been dormant for some time.
Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press