Posted in November 2012

IT’S ALL HAPPENING! 11/30

Note One (Do): The 11/30 edition has been renamed the 11/35 edition to provide for expanded local news telecasts.

Note Two (Re): Phyllis, a.k.a. Mom, is visiting. We’ll have an abbreviated MH because today, Mom’s All Happening.

Starting Five Starting Two

1. Four of the San Antonio Spurs’ best players, three of whom are future Hall of Famers (Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Ginobiliiiiiiiiiiii!) did not play in last night’s nationally televised game versus the Miami Heat. In fact, they were not even in Miami. Coach Gregg Popovich had already sent them home from Orlando earlier that day as a ditch day. Many elements to this tale, but perhaps our favorite is that trio plus Danny Green reportedly  flew home on Southwest Airlines. Southwest does not have Business or First Class seating. Did those four have to line up in A, B or C sections like the rest of us do? By the way, if you wore your Nando de Colo jersey (15 points in 34 minutes for San Antonio in the 105-100 loss) last night to American Airlines Arena, good for you.

“I’m not kidding, Nando. You’re starting tonight.”

2. Jon Gruden tells the University of Tennessee thanks but no thanks. He reminds us of the neighbor we once had who went on J-Date and would meet men on a park bench outside the apartment to vet them first before deciding whether or not she’d agree to having a drink with them (we believe she is now the proud owner of six cats). Spencer Hall had a nice take on the hubbub.

3. Unranked Notre Dame beats No. 8 Kentucky in South Bend, 64-50 (i.e., The First Noel beat Nerlens Noel). The Irish hoops team is upset that students rushed the floor (“We were favored, after all.”). Our friend Brian Hamilton of the Chicago Tribune, who spends an awful lot of time around Notre Dame sports programs, don’t you think, tweets out that someone made a “RICK REILLY PICKED KENTUCKY” sign (I’ll never confess). Speaking of which, Deadspin had Brian do a live chat about Notre Dame football a couple of days ago and he was his typically witty, sardonic and even self-deprecating self. If I had known this was going on, I would have asked, “Tell us about the great press box pizza heist of 2008!”

Manti Teo’s’ sack of Jack Cooley will not count toward his season total

4. Louisville beats Rutgers in football, which should allow the Cardinals to advance to the Orange Bowl to meet the champion of the ACC, the conference they will be joining shortly. If Rick Reilly wants to discuss “college football” and “irrelevant” in the same column, he should write one about the Orange Bowl. It used to be like hanging out with your wild high school friends on Christmas Day after having dinner with your family (the Rose Bowl), but now it’s more like going to see that matinee with all the other sad sacks.

5. New Orleans Satints vs. Atlanta Falcons, a.k.a “The Egged Bowl.” Falcons exorcise demon of the Saints (?) while picking off Drew Brees five times while also ending his NFL-record streak of 54 consecutive games while throwing a touchdonw pass. Actually, Brees did throw a TD pass to Darren Sproles, but it was nullified by an offensive pass interference call on a tight end Jimmy Graham, who was not even involved in the play (Thanks, Jimmy) . Brees has now been intercepted seven times in the past five days. Brett Favre salutes him.

Reserves

The forecast is for heavy rain in Palo Alto tonight for the Pac-12 Championship game between UCLA and Stanford. Well, the song is not titled “It Never Rains in Northern California.” (and, yes, the dude singing this song is the father of a member of The Strokes).

Direct from our sidekick, Bill Hubbell: Former Domers Luke Harangody and Troy Murphy were waived yesterday, while former U Conn stud Jeremy Lamb was assigned to an NBA D-League squad. Harangody is the second all-time leading scorer in Irish history.

ESPN aired a fantastic moment from last night’s Spurs-Heat game in which Charles Barkley is interviewing Coach Pop between quarters. Sir Charles asks Pop two questions, and the four-time NBA champ is sunny and open answering them. When Barkley attempts to ask a third, Pop interrupts him and reminds him that he is only permitted two questions. That’s all the insight you need to what happened last night. There is no rule against Popovich sending his players home for extra rest, and so he did what he was permitted to do. Pop isn’t about selling the NBA; he’s about winning.

And ask yourself, by the way, how many times the Spurs have made the cover of Sports Illustrated during his tenure there. As compared to, say, the Lakers or the Heat.

Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid says of Republican House Majority leader John Boehner, “I don’t understand his brain.” So you may want to get your fiscal cliff parachute ready.

The back page of the New York Post is a paparrazzi photo of a supposedly pudgy Derek Jeter. The New York Yankees have never played an MLB game in December.

New York’s Finest’s finest: Officer Lawrence De Primo, 25, buys boots for a homeless man and a passerby snaps a photo. Internet virality ensues. As the lede in this story says, “Character is what you do when no one is watching.”

 

 

 

IT’S ALL HAPPENING: 11/29

 1. Our pal Riles, alias Rick Reilly, arrives in South Bend for his mea culpa tour. Notre Dame WR John Goodman tweets “has Reilly left the Gug yet? I don’t want to run into him and act excited to see him.” Notre Dame’s Sports Info Dept could learn a lot from John Goodman.

2. Mike Krzyzewski has a bald spot. Duke beat Ohio State (we may have buried the lede). The Blue Devils (7-0) have already beaten No. 3 Kentucky, No. 2 Louisville and No. 4 Ohio State and it’s not even Advent yet. Mason Plumleehad 23 points, 17 rebounds, and one air-balled free throw at the end of the game that almost no one noticed.

Plumlee: All-American or adverb? Or both?

3. The Phoenix Suns, on the second night of a back-to-back through the Rust Belt, lose by 40 at Detroit, which opened the season 0-8. The Suns, once piloted by assist machine Steve Nash, had zero assists in the second quarter and went almost the entire third quarter before achieving one. Coach Alvin Gentry declares his team’s play below “NCAA quality.”

4. Winners of the $587 million Powerball lottery are in Arizona and Missouri. This may explain why my brother is not returning my phone calls this morning.

5. The Honey Badger, Tyrann Mathieu, has said he will make himself eligible for the 2013 NFL Draft. A Heisman Trophy finalist a year ago, Mathieu was booted from LSU’s team for substance abuse issues. Mathieu entertained the prospects of staying at LSU and returning to the team in 2013, or possibly playing at a lower level school. At 5’9″, 175 lbs, with a basket full of character issues, he’s probably a third or fourth round pick at best. Mathieu need only look as far as Vontaze Burfict or Leonard Johnson to see undrafted rookies who are having great first years in the NFL.

 

Reserves

Well, why not? A cat fight broke out a viewing for the deceased Hector “Macho” Camacho in Puerto Rico. Cynthia Castillo, Camacho’s alleged girlfriend got into a scratching fight with his longtime girlfriend and a couple of his sisters at Tuesday’s wake. Camacho had one of my biggest “No F’ing Way” moments in covering sports. Back in 1994 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas for a weigh-in before his loss to Felix Trinidad, Camacho had been relatively subdued (for him), in front of a packed crowd in the MGM theatre. Comes time for him to step on the scale and in the blink of an eye, Camacho tossed aside his towel and jumped on the scale wearing only an ear to ear grin. He shook it a little at the gasping, howling crowd, shrugged his shoulders and yelled out his line, “I’m just a macho man!”

Gregg Popovich continues to flip it to NBA Commissioner David Stern. With the Spurs scheduled for TNT Thursday night in a marquee matchup in Miami, Popovich flew Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili and Jeff Green back home to San Antonio to rest. It might be fun to hear Mr. Barkley talk about this in pregame, but everyone will turn the channel click elsewhere after that.

Minnesota Wild backup goaltender Josh Harding announced that he has MS on Wednesday, but vowed that he’ll keep playing. “No you won’t,” said Donald Fehr.

 

 

 

Day of Yore, November 28

And the Christmas bells that ring there…Are the clanging chimes of doom…We’ll, tonight, thank God, it’s them Instead of you

Okay, I know this is a snark-free subject, but c’mon, did they really have clanging chimes of doom in Africa?

Do They Know It’s Christmas was released today in 1984, and not only was it not spearheaded by Bono, he was about the ninth biggest draw at the time, behind George Michael, Simon Le Bon, Sting, Boy George, Phil Collins,  the lead singer of Spandau Ballet and two other dudes from Duran Duran. Hell, he was probably told, “Hey Irish kid… don’t talk to Paul Young unless he talks to you first!” I love that there’s a “OMG, Bananarama’s here!!!” moment in the video. Kudos to Bob Geldof and all who participated and all who gave. And I miss you, 1984.

  

Another tune had it’s premiere today, way back in 1811. Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 5” dropped tonight at the Gewandhaus in Leipzig. It was his last piano concerto. I think Jay Leno opened.

A horrible night in Boston tonight in 1942, and no, not just because the top ranked Boston College Eagles were upset by Holy Cross in football. Actually, a victory party for BC had been scheduled for the Coconut Grove, but was canceled after the stunning loss. 491 people were killed in the Coconut Grove Fire at Boston’s most popular nightclub.

 

MGM premiered it’s spectacular, “Meet Me In St. Louis” tonight in 1944 in New York City. TIME magazine called it “the prettiest picture of the year” and it has become one of the most beloved movie musicals in history. Judy Garland cemented her superstar status and the movie had huge musical hits with “The Trolley Song,” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.”

1970 saw the release of two classic songs, Elton John’s Your Song” and George Harrison’s My Sweet Lord.”

Happy Birthday’s to Ed Harris (62), Judd Nelson (53) and Jon Stewart (50).

Harris’ High Five

1. Apollo 13

2. The Right Stuff

3. Glengarry Glen Ross

4. A Beautiful Mind

5. Pollack

– Bill Hubbell


IT’S ALL HAPPENING! The “1ndiana Edition”, 11/28

Starting Five

1. Indiana University, which blew out North Carolina by 24 points last night in hoops, is located in Bloomington, Ind. The Hoosiers are also the nation’s top ranked basketball squad. Three-and-a-half to four hours due north (depending on how you catch the lights in Kokomo) in South Bend, Ind., the University of Notre Dame is 12-0 and No. 1 in the nation in football. The last time the nation’s No. 1 basketball and football teams were located in the same state simultaneously? Mid-January of 2007, when the University of Florida had just defeated Ohio State to win the BCS National Championship while the Gators hoops squad was 13-1 and No. 1 in the nation.

Cody Zeller led the Hoosiers to a win over big bro Tyler’s former school

 

2. Who is Grover Norquist and why should you care? Norquist, 56, is not an elected official but rather a conservative lobbyist who has become the face of the anti-tax crusade. Norquist founded Americans for Tax Reform in 1985 and… you’re already moving on to No. 3, aren’t you? Let’s skip directly to his famous quote: “I’m not in favor of abolishing the government. I just want to shrink it down to the size where we can drown it in the bathtub.” You’ll be seeing a lot of Norquist on cable news shows as we flail into the fiscal abyss.

 

3. Ross Parmley, athletic director at Tulsa, goes on administrative leave as the university investigates allegations that he has had “dealings” with an alleged bookie. In other news, tonight’s Powerball jackpot has soared past $500 million and somehow, magically we guess, the spread on the Alabama-Georgia SEC Championship game has dropped from 7.5 to 7 points.

4. Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page, 68, appears on the cover of the Rolling Stone. Page joins fellow 2012 Rolling Stone cover subjects David Bowie (65), Neil Young (67) Sir Paul McCartney (70), Bruce Springsteen (63) and Bob Dylan (71) and Jimi Hendrix (deceased, but would be 70). It’s a funny thing when the President of the United States appears on more RS covers than any one musician in a calendar year and is YOUNGER than at least seven of them. Rock is not dead, but it is in dire need of a hip (or hip-hop) replacement.

Ramble On: Page spent eight hours talking to RS for his cover interview, but revealed very little

5. Louisville may join the ACC. Tulane has joined the Big East. As has a directional Carolina that is not North or South. Jon Gruden may or may not join Tennessee. To quote a charming Southerner we once saw on television, “I’m very drunk and I intend on getting still drunker before this evening’s over...”(sorry, right character, wrong quote) “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.”

 

 

Like Rhett, we’d rather go fight Yanks than listen to any more realignment rumors

Reserves

RIP, belly putter. We will admit to playing very little golf, but the belly putter always seemed like cheating to us. We’d never use it on a putt-putt course.

Johnny Football speaks to the media for the first time this season and reminds us of every loveable yokel you’ve ever come across in a combat film. He’s the kid who’s so sweet that you just know he’s going to take one to the belly and suffer an agonizing death. We’re thinking Giovanni Ribisi in “Saving Private Ryan.” (“Give him the morphine”).

“Just tell my mother that I beat Alabama.”

Realizing now that three of the past four Sports Illustrated covers have featured teams from the Hoosier State: Cody Zeller of Indiana, Manti Te’o of Notre Dame and now Andrew Luck of the Indianapolis Colts. Is it too much to hope for a Fort Wayne Mad Ants cover story?

This is Sean Sonderleiter. Funny, he doesn’t look mad.

New Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer, a Wisconsin native who is only 37 (the youngest Fortune 500 CEO out there) and, let’s face it, kind of hot, gives a rare interview and reveals that she models herself after Vince Lombardi. We do NOT see Dan Lauria playing the role of Mayer in the Broadway play.

When Bride Still Mattered (See what we did there?)

 

Day of Yore, November 27

It was today in 1924 that the streets of New York City saw its first Macy’s Day Parade. Employees and professional entertainers marched from Harlem to Macy’s flagship store on 34th Street. There were floats, bands and animals borrowed from the Central Park Zoo. The first parade, and everyone after, ended with Santa Claus entering Herald Square.

  

Today in 1978, San Francisco mayor George Moscone and openly gay city supervisor Harvey Milk were shot to death at city hall by former supervisor Dan White.

Joe DiMaggio won the closest MVP voting of all time today in 1947, edging Ted Williams 202-201 in the American League vote. Williams was not happy and the numbers bear him out. Williams had already lost the 1941 MVP award to DiMaggio, when Joltin’ Joe’s 56-game hitting streak trumped Teddy Ballgame’s triple crown. Here were their respective numbers for 1947:

DiMaggio: .315  20 HR  97 RBI  .913 OPS  4.5 WAR

Williams: .343  32 HR  114 RBI  1.133 OPS  9.6 WAR

DiMaggio received eight first place votes to Williams’ three. More galling to Williams was that Yankees reliever Joe Page, received seven first place votes. Page was 14-8 with 17 saves.

Today in 1966 the 5-6 Washington Redskins hosted the 1-8-1 New York Giants at D.C. Stadium in a game that was supposed to be playing out the string in a down year for both teams. What transpired was the highest scoring game in NFL history, with the Redskins winning 72-41.

The Redskins led 34-14 in a first half that would seem tame only if compared to the second half. Giants QB Gary Wood threw a 41-yard TD pass to Joe Morrison early in the third quarter to cut the lead to 34-21. It was the first of six consecutive touchdowns that were over 30 yards. The final tally of the game was perhaps the most bizarre– Giants rookie quarterback Tom Kennedy (of Los Angeles State fame) rushed a third down pass out of bounds in order to get one more shot at a long ball from deep in his own territory. The problem was that it was already fourth down. Instead of just taking a knee, the Redskins kicked a last second field goal to go over 70 points. Skins coach Otto Graham claimed that it was to get rookie kicker Charlie Gogolak his confidence back after missing two field goals the week before. Many thought it was Redskin linebacker Sam Huff, a former Giant, calling the shot to rub it in the Giants nose. Believe it or not, Sonny Jurgensen finished just 10 of 16 for 145 yards and three touchdowns.

Today in 1980 ABC debuted “Bosom Buddies”…. you know, that show that launched the career of Peter Scolari.

 

– Bill Hubbell

 

IT’S ALL HAPPENING! 11/27

Starting Five

1. First, the good news: Through 12 games the Charlotte Bobcats had already registered as many wins (7) as they did all of last year’s 66-game season. Last night in Oklahoma City, however, they was ambushed. The Thunder were so hot (Tropic Thunder?) that at halftime the score was 64-24. The 40-point halftime advantage was the largest such lead after 24 minutes since 1991, when the Golden State Warriors led the Sacramento Kings 88-41 at the half. Our thoughts: Was a sideline reporter on hand and did he/she inquire about halftime adjustments with Bobcat coach Mike Dunlap?

Thunderstruck: OKC leads by 40 at the half en route to a 114-69 rout.

2. The attorney most responsible for the free agency era in baseball, Marvin Miller, dies at the age of 95. In 1968 Miller negotiated the first collective bargaining agreement in MLB history, raising the minimum salary from $6,000 to $10,ooo. That’s per year, not per game.

3. Bruce Springsteen begins one of his top five all-time tunes with the lyrics, “Lights out tonight/Trouble in the heartland”, but apparently, according to the USA Today, “these Badlands start treating us good.” Personal income is up in middle America since 2007, while it is down markedly on the coasts in that same period. Why? Booming gas prices and farm goods prices, while Wall Street tanked. Personally, I don’t know how you leave “Spiderman: Turn Off The Dark” out of this equation, but that’s just me.

4. The University of Chris Fowler Colorado fires football coach Jon Embree after two seasons and a 4-21 record. The Buffs were last in the nation in Scoring Defense and Passing Efficiency Defense this season and were next-to-last in Sacks Allowed and Turnover Margin. At his press conference upon being terminated Embree, who is African-American, noted that is hard for black coaches “to get second chances.” Ten years ago it was hard for black coaches to get first chances. Embree, a CU alum, has a point that white coaches have a better chance of failing and being hired somewhere else (Hello, Charlie Weis!), but a coach of any color would have been sacked after this two-year sample.

5. Reviewer compares “Liz and Dick” to a natural disaster: “As the Red Cross hands out coffee to survivors of this Lifetime flick…” As Jimmy Kimmel said, “It’s nice to see someone other than a parole board reviewing Lindsay Lohan.”

Reserves


The BrooklyNets beat the New York Knicks in overtime in their inaugural meeting as dual, dueling denizens of New York City (the game had been scheduled for November 1, but Sandy changed all that). The larger issue here is whether Brooklyn native and resolute New York Knick fan Spike Lee will cross over from the 212 (or 917) to the 718. Our opinion: New York has already lost Fireman Ed this week. We need something to hold onto. Lee did make the best film about Brooklyn — if not all of New York City — of all time with “Do The Right Thing.”

How long until they make a movie about Maria Santos Gorrostieta?

Tomorrow night’s Powerball jackpot is currently at $425 million and growing. Psst, Congress: Don’t raise taxes, just raise the price of a Powerball ticket.

Pulitzer Prize-winning author Thomas Ricks appears on Fox News, accuses it of “operating as a wing of the Republican Party” (that’s crazytalk!), and his Benghazi interview abruptly ends.

Notre Dame’s ticket office fields 2,500 phone calls on Monday. Scalpers rejoice.

The “Ten Wildest Led Zeppelin Legends, Fact-Checked.” Why, yes, I do have time for that (and may we recommend the book “Hammer of the Gods” to anyone who loves reading about rock and roll?).

One in ten Mexican citizens lives in the United States…” Really?

The Heisman Pundit, alias Chris Huston, has Johnny Football leading the H race over Manti Te’o with one week remaining. Let’s have them debate!

“Now get your thimble off my schnauzer!” Your daily dose of The Daily Show

Twenty-four years ago Steve Belles was a special special (redundancy intended) teams player for Lou Holtz on the 1988 Notre Dame national championship team who had the honor of playing for the national championship in his hometown. Last weekend Belles led Hamilton High School to its fifth Division I Arizona state high school football championship in the past seven years.

 

IT’S ALL HAPPENING! The “Fool-proof Suffication” edition, 11/26

Starting Five

1. Let’s begin Cyber Monday with the latest development in the Casey Anthony story. If you have forgotten, Casey Anthony is the O.J. Simpson of  filicide. A few days ago Orlando, Fla., TV station WKMG reported that detectives only searched Anthony’s Safari search engine and not her Mozilla Firefox search engine before her trial for the murder of her two year-old daughter, Caylee. Had they searched the latter, they would have seen that someone did a Google search for “fool-proof suffication” on June 16, 2008. Which happens to be the same day that Caylee Anthony died. So, yeah, that’s kind of a big cyber FAIL.

This smile says, “I do understand the term ‘double jeopardy.’”

2. The New York Giants are up 38-10 in the waning moments of their Faith Hill Night in America contest versus the Green Bay Packers. Tight end Martellus Bennett runs a short slant-in route over the middle, but Eli Manning overthrows him. The ball has already sailed past Bennett when rookie Packer safety Jerron McMillian buries the crown of his helmet into a defenseless Bennett’s facemask. Penalty, but who cares? McMillian’s coaches are probably happy that they have an “enforcer” in the deep middle and they know that upcoming teams –and their receivers — will see that tape. If the NFL is truly serious about making the game safer — and let’s face it, the most dangerous collisions occur between the hash marks on passing routes — then both players AND their coaches must be fined for such hits. Yellow flags will not suffice. Bennett said afterward, “It just knocked the wind out of me. I got pissed off. I wanted to kick his ass.”

3. Fortunately, Martellus Bennett was not injured too badly. If he had been, he may not have been able to save a fan’s life immediately after the game.

4. Johnny Manziel or Manti Te’o? Let’s first agree that both are deserving. In Johnny Football’s favor: in his first season, and in Texas A&M’s first season in the SEC, he broke Cam Newton’s record for total offense yardage with exactly 4,600 yards. And that’s without the benefit of playing in the SEC Championship Game, which Newton (who was also in his first season as a full-time FBS QB, it should be noted) had. If you want to quibble, you can point out that Manziel faced two FCS schools (Te’o, zero) but he did not play all that many plays versus either. As for Te’o, Irish coach Brian Kelly said after Saturday night’s 22-13 win at USC, “If a guy like Manti Te’o is not going to win the Heisman, they should just make it an offensive award.” He’s the best player on the nation’s No. 2 scoring defense, which is the number one indicator of national champions. Since the award was first given to Jay Berwanger in 1935, only one exclusively non-offensive player (Charles Woodson, CB, Michigan) has won it. And even Woodson returned punts.

5. This is rich. The 1/2 man in “Two And a Half Mennnnnnn”, Jake (Angus T. Jones), appears in a video imploring viewers to stop watching the No. 1 rated sitcom on television. “‘Please stop watching ‘Two and a Half Men.’ I’m on ‘Two and a Half Men’ and I don’t wanna be on it. Please stop watching it. Please stop filling your head with filth.” Not quite a “tiger blood” quip, but we bet it got Chuck Lorre’s attention. Jones earns $300,000 per episode. That surely got George Costanza’s attention.

“Filth, filth, filth, filth/ Filthy, filth, filth, filth…”

 

Reserves

Let’s face it: Cyborg Monday would be better.

Spencer Hall of “Every Day Should Be Saturday” tweeted aloud who Fireman Ed is this morning. Surely you j-e-s-t, jest! Jest! Jest!

Mika Brzezinski, after U.S. congressman Eric Cantor (Rep.) appeared on “Morning Joe” and dodged every fiscal cliff question tossed at him as if he were Neo in “The Matrix”: “Thank you for answering our questions 45 different ways.”

More on Casey Anthony/Caylee Anthony. This is one of the more educational scenes to have aired on “The Newsroom” and it’s the first scene in which we actually thought, “Okay, maybe Don Keefer (Thomas Sadoski)  is a bad boyfriend, but he’s not necessarily a bad guy.”

Did you read that WKMG piece on Anthony’s defense team? They knew the entire trial about the “fool-proof suffication” search and were just waiting for the prosecution to pounce on them with it. “We thought they were going to sandbag us,” one attorney said. Imagine being a prosecutor on that case, all the man-hours you put into it, and only learning last week that the investigators failed to do something as simple as pore over multiple search engines. That said, this is a terrific ad for Safari.

Air New Zealand unveils a Hobbit-themed plane. Making twice-daily non-stops between Middle Earth and Sauron. 

Plenty of leg room

 

Seriously, who’s the producer at NBC Sports with the leg fetish? Have you seen the opening for Football Night in America?

Does Florida have an argument? Well, the 11-1 Gators have impressive victories over Texas A&M, South Carolina, LSU and Florida State, all of whom are ranked in the top 13 in the BCS standings. Georgia, also 11-1 and like the Gators, in the SEC East, has one impressive win. Over Florida. The Gators have the more worthy overall resume, while the Dawgs have the head-to-head victory on their side. Our friend Stewart Mandel at SI.com argues that this illustrates the value of a four-team playoff, but we only see more chaos. If Notre Dame, Alabama, Georgia and Florida were involved, whither Oregon? And Kansas State? After all, both are/probably will be 11-1 as well.

Do you know who this is?

????

Hints: He rushed for a total of 744 yards, or 248 yards per game, in his final three outings. He finished the season as the nation’s leading rusher. It says something about how much college football has transformed in the past decade or two that very few people outside of the Pac-12 recognize the name Ka’Deem Carey. He’s a sophomore, a local kid from Tucson Canyon Del Oro High School, who finished the season with a 146 yard rushing average. Carey destroyed Colorado, the most putrid AQ school in the nation this season, for 366 yards rushing and five touchdowns earlier this month. Honestly, we don’t even remember hearing about that (East Coast bias!). The Buffs, by the way, finished last in the nation in two defensive categories, although rushing defense was not one of them.

Notre Dame nose tackle Louis Nix, all 340 pounds of him, after the Irish stopped USC on four plays from the one-yard line (USC joined Stanford and Washington as having first-and-goals from the 1 versus the Irish since ’09 and not scoring): “They got to earn that shit!” That belongs on a chocolate-colored T-shirt.

 

 

Day of Yore, November 26

“Of all the gin joints, in all the towns, in all the world, she walks into mine.”– Rick Blaine

“Casablanca” had it’s world premiere tonight in 1942 at the Hollywood Theatre in New York City. Starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman as star-crossed lovers Rick Blaine and Ilsa Lund, the movie was churned out by Warner Brothers as just another of hundreds of movies produced at the time. It would obviously fool them all, winning Best Picture and becoming one of the most iconic movies of all time.

She was married, but thought he was dead. They had a thing, but got split apart instead. He bought a cabaret and lived his life.

Yvonne: Where were you last night?
Rick: That’s so long ago, I don’t remember.
Yvonne: Will I see you tonight?
Rick: I never make plans that far ahead.

She walked in and said, “Play it Sam. Play ‘As Time Goes By’”. Did he remember?

Ilsa: The day the Germans marched into Paris.

Rick: Not an easy day to forget.

Ilsa: No.

Rick: I remember every detail. The Germans wore grey, you wore blue.

She was married, they fell in love all over again. But was it to be?

Ilsa: I can’t fight it anymore. I ran away from you once. I can’t do it again. Oh, I don’t know what’s right any longer. You have to think for both of us. For all of us.
Rick: All right, I will. Here’s looking at you, kid.
Ilsa: [smiles] I wish I didn’t love you so much.

The greatest love story in movie history? It has to be up there.

Here’s the best song that took it’s title from “Casablanca.”

The University of Notre Dame was founded today in 1842. The NHL was founded today in 1917. You can argue as to the relevance of each over the years, but you’d have to give the current edge to the Fighting Irish.

 

After years of fruitless excavations in the Valley of the Kings, today in 1922 Howard Carter, after summoning his financier, Lord Carnarvon, made a breach in the top left hand corner of a doorway and shone a candlelight that revealed many gold and ebony treasures still in place in King Tut’s tomb. They became the first humans to enter the tomb in over 3,000 years.

  

Of the things that tell you that your television show might be jumping the shark, a guest appearance from Elton John is probably near the top. Such was the case for “Ally McBeal” who had Captain Fantastic on tonight in 2001 during the show’s fifth and final season.

Happy 74th birthday to Tina Turner. 

1. What’s Love Got To Do With It?

2. Private Dancer

3. Better Be Good To Me

4. The Best

5. I Don’t Want To Fight

 

 

 

 

IT’S ALL HAPPENING! The “Invictus/Weakened Edition, 11/24-24″

Starting Five

1. “I am the master of my fate/I am the captain of my soul.” William Ernest Henley was not known as a rabid college football fan. He was a 19th-century British poet, after all. However, the author of “Invictus” would be pleased with the results of the 2012 college football season. To wit…

“If we had a vote, we wouldn’t put USC No. 1 in the preseason poll, either (wink wink, Lane)”

2…. Notre Dame begins the season unranked and unloved but finishes it 12-0 and ranked No. 1. USC starts the year No. 1 and unbeatable and finishes it unranked. Irish linebacker Manti Te’o, who had zero interceptions in his first three seasons, has seven in 2012.

3. Defections and disillusionment hovered over ironically named Happy Valley all summer, but one man — first-year head coach Bill O’Brien — was determined to rebuild. The Nittany Lions, minus their best player (Silas Redd, who made an exodus to Southern California) and a few other key contributors (Brett Fera, kicker; Malcolm Brown, WR, both of whom also transferred), finished 8-4 after defeating Wisconsin in overtime. Did anyone have them winning more than even four games?

4. Like Penn State, B1G member Ohio State began 2012 with no chance at a bowl due to NCAA sanctions. Say what you will about Urban Meyer, but the Buckeye State native led the silver helmets to a 12-0 season in his first year. Meyer has now led two different schools — Utah, OSU — to undefeated seasons and a third, Florida, to a pair of national championships.

For the record, on day that Urban led OSU to undefeated season, Jim Tressel got lifted on players’ shoulder inside Horseshoe

5… Under first-year head coach Paul Chryst, Pittsburgh loses its season-opener at home to FCS Youngstown State. The Panthers recover to defeat No. 13 Virginia Tech and No. 18 Rutgers, and they should have beaten the Fighting Irish if it were not for a missed field goal (and a missed penalty by the officials on that kick). If Pitt beats USF next Saturday they’ll be 6-6 and bowl-eligible.

Reserves

Larry Hagman died on Friday, fittingly in Dallas. In the late 1970s, in the time before cable television, when the networks were a their peak, there was no bigger male television star in the world than the man who played J.R. Ewing (the female counterpart would be whoever was the hottest of that season’s “Charlie’s Angels”).

The inimitable J.R. Ewing

For those too young to remember, Ewing was Tony Soprano in a ten-gallon hat. Except that he was more charming, certainly more handsome and refined, but no less possessed of that duality of venal wickedness and disarming charm when the moment called for it. J.R. Ewing has to be one of the ten best television characters of all time.

Another item, and feel free to offer a suggestion. We cannot recall an actor who played two characters on TV that are both so widely remembered and so utterly disparate. Major Anthony Nelson was a likeable astronaut who just happened to have one of the world’s most beautiful women (the aptly named Barbara Eden) land in his lap and was smart enough not to upset the jeannie in the bottle. We’ve seen actors play two different roles on successful shows (Tony Danza, Heather Locklear), but we cannot think of anyone who showed as much range.

“Oh, Master…”

Finally, it’s worth noting that Hagman both grew up in Texas and that he did serve in the Air Force. The man, who was as fascinating a character in real-life as he was onscreen, really did research his roles.

Notre Dame-USC bits of tid…

1. The Irish did not allow a first-quarter touchdown this season.

2. USC had 30 yards after catches last night, the Trojans’ lowest total in the past four seasons.

3. The contest drew a 10.3 Nielsen rating. By comparison, last season’s Rose Bowl and Fiesta Bowl averaged a 9.4.

In College Station Johnny Heismanziel throws for 372 yards and three TDs’ as Texas A&M routs Missouri, 59-20, in a meeting of SEC freshman schools. Manziel, who is looking as if he will become the first (redshirt) freshman to win the Heisman Trophy, led the Aggies to two 50-plus point wins, one 60-plus point win, and one 70-point victory. Manziel would make it two consecutive Texans to win the Heisman, neither of whom played for the state’s flagship university. Horns down, indeed.

No. 2 on his chest, but likely No. 1 in the Heisman ballot

 

 

 

Gene Chizik is out at Auburn. He was gone before the Tigers fell behind 42-0 at halftime in Tuscaloosa. Our friend Stewart Mandel notes that Auburn has now fired its last three coaches (Terry Bowden, Tommy Tuberville, Gene Chizik) to have led the Tigers to an undefeated season. War Eagle!

L.A.’s most notorious curmudgeon/gadfly, T.J. Simers, asks Jim Mora, Jr., if UCLA tanked its game versus Stanford knowing the two would meet next week in the Pac-12 Championship Game. Go to the beginning and then to the 4:30 mark. Also, tell us if Mora says, “Because we’re competers, T.J.”

IT’S ALL HAPPENING! “125th Birthday of Notre Dame Football” edition

Starting Five


1. On the 49th anniversary of this awful day in Dallas, the Cowboys fell at home to the Washington Redskins, 38-31, and the Longhorns lost in Austin, 20-13, to TCU. At least it was a Lone Star State native, RG3, who beat the Cowboys. Redskin coach referred to his rookie QB, a Copperas Cove native, as “Cool Hand Luke”. Griffin admitted that he had no idea who Cool Hand Luke was — the film came out in 1967, or 23 years before RG3 did — but when asked what he thought of the CHL comparison, RG3 smiled and said, “He must be pretty cool.”

Cool Hand Luke = RG3 >>>>>>> Other Side of the Pillow

2. The New York Post, as it so often does, put it best: “BUTT UGLY.”  The New York Jets fell behind 35-3 at Met Life Stadium to the New England Patriots before losing 49-19. This was both the nadir and the defining game of the Mark Sanchez era in New York, with the quintessential moment being Sanchez rotating the wrong way on a dive play, then heading upfield, being tackled by the derriere of offensive lineman Brandon Moore, fumbling the ball, and having Patriot DB Steve Gregory scoop it up for a score. It was the Jets’ Joe Pisarcik moment, and you will be seeing it replayed for years, accompanied by “Yakety Sax.” Gregory, by the way, is a Staten Island native who had an interception and two fumble recoveries last night. Talk about a first responder.

No caption necessary

3. NFL, which stands for “Now Fully Legislated.” The Houston Texans steal a touchdown, and a victory, from the Detroit Lions via an arcane and asinine rule which penalizes a coach for tossing a challenge flag on a touchdown play. All touchdowns are reviewed, so the red flag is superfluous. We get it. And we can even understand penalizing said coach — in this case, Jim Schwartz — a certain distance of yardage because it can be seen, if you squint, as unsportsmanlike conduct. However, to incorporate, as part of the penalty, the decision that the play will not be reviewed, has no basis in logic or reason. It’s like Jerry Seinfeld returning the jacket to the department store. Reason you are returning the jacket? “Spite.”

4. Mexico would like to change its name to… “Mexico.” We think it should change its name to “America’s 51st state.” Just think of the coastline property you could buy. Of course, the problem lies with the fact that it would be much easier for Shawshank penitentiary officials to track down Andy Dufresne, and who wants that?

5. The Five M’s of the 2012 Heisman Trophy: Manti, Manziel, Marqise, Miller, manana. Right now it’s Johnny Manziel’s to win, but if either Manti Te’o or Marqise Lee has a headline-worthy effort in tomorrow’s prime-time Notre Dame-USC game, one of them could wrestle it from Johnny Football. Braxton Miller has been spectacular all season for bowl-ineligible (but they didn’t need to be this sesason…dopes!) and undefeated Ohio State, who should roll Michigan in Columbus. Miller’s candidacy is compromised by the game’s noon start — fair or not, it’s true — and the Buckeyes’ BCS pariah status this season.

Reserves


We could be looking at the largest Powerball jackpot ever tomorrow night, with an annuity of $320 million. MediumHappy has a $5 stake in the game.

On Thanksgiving morning, 1887 (Nov. 23), a group of Notre Dame students met a group of Michigan students who were happy to introduce them to the game of football. The Michigan students had been on the way to play Northwestern when the Wildcats canceled. Michigan got off the train in South Bend and the rest is history. They played on the campus of Notre Dame and Michigan won, 8-0. Afterward they all sat down together for a meal and then the Michigan students took a train back home. It’s all very Pilgrims and Indians in retrospect, isn’t it? Happy 125th birthday, Notre Dame football.

It’s a long way from here to Manti Te’o

 

Jesse Palmer apologizing for flashing “Horns Down” is far more offensive than Jesse Palmer flashing hands down. He is handsome, though.

Twitter pans Matt Lauer’s co-hosting of the Macy’s Parade, particularly his mispronunciation of Broadway standard “‘S Wonderful”. Then again, Mr. Lauer was likely well-compensated for his hosting duties. Nice work if you can get it (Did you see what we did there?).

Yet another hour of Lauer

Let’s move from Savannah Guthrie to Arlo Guthrie. After all, he is the one Guthrie who we have always associated with Thanksgiving day. If you’ve never heard this “Alice’s Restaurant”, which clocks in at 18:34, now is as good a time as any to meet it. This was a staple for us on Thanksgiving morning back when we used to listen to terrestrial radio.

New York City had a serial killer. Salvatore Perrone, 64, killed three shopkeepers in Brooklyn whose common thread is that their business addresses included the number “8.” Our Russian barber had this to say about Perrone, who was apprehended on Wednesday: “You know what they’d do to this guy in Russia? They’d split his torso open with a knife, pour salt inside, wait a few minutes, and then set him on fire.” Somewhere in Minsk there is an American barber saying, “They’d find him a defense attorney, who’d immediately ask for an extension, and even after the trial — if he were found guilty… or not guilty by reason of insanity– they’d lay down so many appeals that it would cost the taxpayer hundreds of thousands of dollars.” ” America, F___ Yeah!” (don’t open this link, mom)

Headline on espn.com: “Wizards Lose to Bobcats, 92-76, Wizards Nation Reacts.” There’s a Wizards nation? Really? Perennially poor Wizards are 0-10. Their consistency is astounding.

Film we are excited to see this weekend? “Life of Pie Traynor.” What happens when a young (Cleveland?) Indian boy finds himself marooned on a boat in the middle of the ocean with a Hall of Fame third baseman for the Pittsburgh Pirates? Or is all of it just a hallucination?

And yet he looks like a Detroit Tiger

So it has been nearly two weeks and there is still no name for the USC football manager at the heart of Deflate-gate? What’s happening here? Where is Shelley Smith? Where is The Daily Trojan? Where, pray tell, is Tim Tessalone? “Markinson’s gone. There is no Markinson.” By the way, nice touch with the “Supreme Court” hoops top. That’s the kind of touch that makes a good movie a great movie. And we don’t know if this makes us Daniel Kaffee or Joann Galloway, but we strongly suspect that it’s the latter. Because we surely would do dumbass things such as telling the judge that we “strenuosly” object.

“Did Kiffin order the Code Red?”