Today’s Funniest Sports-Related Story

The Associated Press is reporting that Chad Ochocinco’s special-edition cereal has a typo where a phone-number for Feed the Children actually reaches a sex-line.

“The phone number is supposed to connect callers to Feed the Children, which benefits from sales of the Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver’s cereal. But the box has the wrong toll-free prefix, meaning callers get a seductive-sounding woman who makes risque suggestions and then asks for a credit card number.”

According to Ochocinco, “…the number was clearly a mistake.” Mistake or not, this is pretty funny, and I couldn’t imagine it happening with another player.

The irony of this story comes from how Chad Ochocinco marketed the cereal on his website. His pitch: “Start your day with a lil suga!!!”

This makes it almost seem intentional.

(Yahoo! Sports)

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Ryder Cup Pairings For Friday

Unfortunately no Tiger vs. Rory….yet.

From ESPN:

“Phil Mickelson will help get the Ryder Cup started while Tiger Woods will be part of the third team to tee off for the United States during Friday morning’s matches at Celtic Manor.  Mickelson will team up with long-hitting Dustin Johnson against England’s Lee Westwood and Germany’s Martin Kaymer in the opening fourball match, better known as best ball. Woods will team with Steve Stricker against Englishmen Ian Poulter and Ross Fisher.

2:45 Phil Mickelson,
Dustin Johnson (US)
vs. Lee Westwood,
Martin Kaymer (Europe)
3:00 Stewart Cink,
Matt Kuchar (US)
vs. Rory McIlroy,
Graeme McDowell (Europe)
3:15 Steve Stricker,
Tiger Woods (US)
vs. Ian Poulter,
Ross Fisher (Europe)
3:30 Bubba Watson,
Jeff Overton (US)
vs. Luke Donald,
Padraig Harrington (Europe)

[ESPN]

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Should TCU Join the Big East?

By Ross Morgan:

A few days ago The New York Post had a story speculating that the Big East conference was interested in adding TCU as a member. At the time I ignored the story because I viewed it as pure speculation (not to mention it was also published by the notorious NY Post). But think about it, TCU is getting attention from a New York newspaper! Millions of people on the island of Manhattan, when walking to work, picked up a coffee, donut and article on TCU. This thought has led me to analyze the rumored situation, and determine that a move to the Big East would be in TCU’s best interest.

Like I alluded to before, a move to the Big East conference absolutely increases TCU’s visibility in every conceivable way. First, compare the population difference between the geographic area associated with the Big East with that associated with the Mountain West. The amount of eyeballs viewing our games with interest would increase dramatically. As of right now, the Big East is an automatic qualifying conference. This means that sports analysts and their networks will actually care about the in-conference games because the winner of the conference gets into a coveted BCS bowl. Right now, the interest in Mountain West Conference games is incredibly low (except on The Mtn). Ever wonder why you will see a random Big East game get hyped up on ESPN while the average Mountain West game is relegated to a network that is only available on the DirecTV Xtra Sports Package? This is why. For most teams in AQ conferences, the regular season is a lot like the NFL regular season. The goal is to win the division (or conference) so that you get into the (BCS) postseason. Although recent Mountain West conference champions have gone to BCS games, this isn’t due to winning the conference, but can be chalked up to being undefeated. When the “big boys” won’t accept you unless you’re perfect, you really aren’t being accepted by the big boys. This is TCU’s chance to join the adult table, and everyone’s eyes are on it.

However, although TCU would be in a more visible conference, none of its conference games will be more hyped or more important than the upcoming annual Mountain West match-up with Boise State. Next year, Boise is joining the MWC, and that means an annual contest against TCU. This was last year’s Fiesta Bowl matchup. There isn’t much of an argument against the idea that TCU and Boise St are the two most important non-AQ teams in FBS (despite what you hear from BYU). Boise and TCU are both currently ranked as top-five teams in both the AP and Coaches polls. Both are in the national championship discussion (random thought: Does anybody want to see an Ohio State – Alabama national championship game? Maybe I’m biased, but it seems like the majority of the nation hopes one slips up so that TCU or Boise gets a chance to prove they belong – alas, most prefer Boise). The fact that TCU and Boise are going to play each other every year is huge! This has the potential to become UT vs OU caliber. This game will be the Ohio State – Michigan of the Mountain West and will give the conference incredible visibility. Right now, there is not a Big East matchup that will give TCU anywhere near the same visibility as the annual matchup with Boise. If TCU joins the Big East, it loses that.

But I think joining the Big East is worth it.

The Big East is an automatic qualifying conference. I know a lot of TCU fans are the Rage Against the Machine type that rail against the system being corrupt and would love nothing more than to defeat it. I am one of those people. But, sometimes the old adage, “If you can’t beat them, join them” is appropriate. This is one of the times when TCU should join them. Last year, TCU and Cincinnati (A Big East school) were undefeated. Neither got into the National Championship, but had UT lost the Big 12 championship game, one of the schools would. TCU was ranked ahead of Cincinnati going into the final week. However, in the final BCS ranking, Cincinnati jumped TCU by a slight margin. The Big East is more highly regarded than the Mountain West, despite the simulated conference rankings showing otherwise. TCU joining the Big East absolutely destroys the Mountain West’s ranking. The Mountain West’s good reputation is because of TCU. If TCU leaves, the conference is almost as bad as the Sun Belt. Since this is the case, TCU joining the Big East gives them as a big of a boost as the loss to the Mountain West. The Big East is an Automatic Qualifying conference, and this means TCU would be guaranteed BCS bowl games every time it won the conference. The Big East upon adding TCU, I believe, would lose the reputation as being the weakest AQ conference. Other than Boise, there is nothing worth saving from the Mountain West. TCU represents the best of the Mountain West. The argument that the Mountain West is better than the Big East, thus TCU should stay in the Mountain West is dumb. The Mountain West is better than the Big East because of TCU.

Of course, we have to discuss money. It all boils down to money in the end (like everything else in life). Being in the Big East gives TCU a multiple of the money it receives now. All teams in AQ conferences automatically get money every year. My Congressman, Joe Barton, says it best in an editorial he wrote:

“…Let’s match up Texas Christian (Mountain West, non-BCS conference) versus Baylor University (Big 12, BCS conference). Here is the tale of the tape from 2005 to 2008:

TCU Horned Frogs: 37-10 regular season record; 4-0 bowl record.

Baylor Bears: 16-31 regular season record; zero bowl games (the university’s last bowl win was in 1992).

During that time, the two teams have squared off twice, with TCU winning both games. But thanks to the BCS, Baylor has been paid millions more than TCU by bowl games it never appeared in—simply because it is in a BCS conference.”

This is important as anyone who has been to Baylorfans.com knows that Baylor alumni love to brag about how much better their facilities are than TCUs. I like to brag about how much better TCU’s donors are because it has facilities that match schools in AQ conferences (though the political support is lacking). I like to lie awake and dream at night about how great TCUs facilities would be if it brought in AQ dollars and maintained the same (or increasing) levels of donor support. This dream could come true (and my dreams never ever come true – I’ve been waiting to get a date with Piper Perabo since I was 13).

A more important statistic. Data from The Sports Business Journal shows that each of the six AQ conferences received $22.2 million last year from the BCS. A total of $24 million was given by the BCS to the five non-AQ conferences, that’s a total to be split between five conferences. What’s even more offensive is that number would have been substantially lower had TCU and Boise not played in the Fiesta Bowl. TCU’s inclusion earned $9.75 million and Boise’s $4.5 million (why did Boise’s inclusion bring less incremental payout? I don’t know. But I bet it’s something evil and corrupt…). If you take away Boise and TCU from the BCS picture, the non-AQ conferences get $9.75 million to split between themselves (divide by five) and then split between the teams (divide by a large enough number to make you not care about the payout). Schools like Baylor get substantial payouts for doing nothing; actually they get it for fielding horrible football teams and being friends with UT in an AQ conference. This is one of the most unfair and unstable business/economic models I’ve ever seen. If I was a Tea Party member, I wouldn’t call President Obama a socialist. I’d call him a BCS. Whatever this BCS system is, it is much scarier than socialism (unless you’re Baylor).

But remember, if you can’t beat them – join them. As the YouTube video says, “I wanna know where tha gold at. Give me tha gold.” TCU can see where the gold is at. It’s time for TCU to get it some. I’m tired of TCU being the Buckinghams. I want my alma mater to be the Beatles.

The biggest and most important reason to join the Big East: dollar bills.

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LeBron and Maverick Cite Racism As Factor For Backlash

This information comes from Sports by Brooks via a CNN interview the King and his prince did last night.  Here’s the transcript of that part of the discussion from Sports by Brooks:

O’BRIEN (voice-over): James entered the NBA as an 18-year-old. Two years later, he fired his agents and then put Carter, a 22-year- old college dropout, in charge of his $135 million worth of endorsement deals.

(on camera): How old were you?

CARTER: I was 22.

O’BRIEN: And you are the guy in charge of the most important valuable athlete maybe in the world?

CARTER: But I wasn’t alone. And if I would have been stupid enough to think for one second that I could do this all by myself all alone, absolutely, I would have been over my head. Everyone knows the concept, right, of LeBron pitching to the kids, it’s really cool –

CARTER: It’s just about control and not doing it the way it’s always been done or not looking the way that it always looks.

O’BRIEN (on camera): Do you think there’s a role that race plays in this.

JAMES: I think so at times. It’s always, you know, a race factor.

CARTER: It definitely played a role in some of the stuff coming out of the media, things that were written for sure.

O’BRIEN (voice-over): LeBron James and Maverick Carter say what does bother them is that lost amid the controversy is the fact that “The Decision” TV program raised $3 million for Boys & Girls Club of America.

CARTER: We own the advertising time. We went out and sold it to brands and we took every dime and donated it to charity.

JAMES: For me to have an opportunity to give back to the Boys & Girls Club of America, that I would never change that. And if I have to take heat to give back to kids, I would do it the same way every single time.”

There you have it folks.  LeBron dropped an atomic bomb on Cleveland’s heart “for the kids.”  And you know what? 

We don’t care.

I’d like to take this moment to announce Gen Y’s full support for the Miami Heat next season.  We’ll have more on this in the future. 

Anyone who thinks this team is going to be bad because they don’t have a “clear number one” or that LeBron and Wade are going to fight over the last shot are sorely misguided in their NBA analysis. 

This team is going to wreck shop. This team is going to chase (and set) records.  This team is going to win…a lot.  And they are going to destroy everyone who gets in their way.  ‘Nuff Said.

[Sports by Brooks]

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UNC Coach A “Runner” For NFL Agent?

That’s what a Yahoo! Sports investigation uncovered in a story published yesterday.  This is earth-shaking news for the North Carolina football program and the NCAA as a whole as it is the first time a coach has been linked as a “runner.”  Yahoo! Sports’ Charles Robinson has the story:

“Prominent NFL agent Gary Wichard and former University of North Carolina assistant football coach John Blake have engaged in multiple financial transactions since May of 2007, a four-month investigation by Yahoo! Sports has found.”

The article also goes on to state that:

“In an interview with Yahoo! Sports in August, Wichard denied any impropriety between himself and Blake. He also denied that Blake was ever previously employed by Pro Tect Management, despite a brochure obtained by Yahoo! Sports which listed Blake as the vice president of football operations for the agency and described his duties. But Wichard insisted that while the two have shared a 25-year friendship, there has been no financial relationship between the two.

‘I don’t get involved with him bringing me players or anything like that,’ Wichard said. ‘It has not happened. … Would John Blake say something positive to a kid about me if he was asked? I would think so. He has seen my work over the years, just like I would say something positive about him in terms of what he can do as a coach.’

But three sources said documents show the relationship between Wichard and Blake also extended into the financial realm several times over the past three years. Those instances included:

• At least six wire transfers from Wichard’s private bank – The First National Bank of Long Island – to Blake.

• A $45,000 personal loan to Blake from The First National Bank of Long Island.

• A Pro Tect Management credit card issued in Blake’s name.”

As Jason Whitlock likes to say, “keep doin’ the damn thing” Yahoo! Sports.  These investigations rule.

[Yahoo! Sports]

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Ines Sainz Offered To Pose For Playboy

TMZ has the latest, “It’s not just the New York Jets who want to see that hot TV Azteca reporter without her clothes on — TMZ has learned Ines Sainz has received a formal offer to pose naked in Playboy.  Sources involved in the negotiations confirm Hugh Hefner’s people reached out with a “pretty big offer” involving a huge payday and the cover — as long as the Mexican reporter strips down to her traje de cumpleaños.  But don’t get too excited — sources close to Ines tell us her network prohibits talent from posing in the buff.”

We support this, don’t we?

[TMZ]

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The Truth Hurts

A Tampa Bay area colunist has come to the conclusion that the city might not be a baseball town.  After all these years…say it ain’t so!  From the Tampa Tribune, “But it works both ways, so don’t blame the Tampa Bay Rays for wondering whether they really have a future around here after 12,446 fans showed up Monday at Tropicana Field on a night when the home team could have clinched a playoff spot.  Two of the Rays’ brightest stars – Evan Longoria and David Price – went public after the game.  Longoria called it ‘disheartening’ in a lengthy chat with reporters. Price used Twitter to call it ’embarrassing.’  Price quickly retreated, sending a follow-up tweet that read, ‘If I offended anyone I apologize. I did not think it was gonna turn into this …’  Actually, it has been “this” for a long time, and I’m surprised it has taken until now for players to speak up about it. You can go all the way back to the beginning, when the second game that the then-Devil Rays played had plenty of available seats. A lot of them have stayed empty, even though these Rays have become a model organization.  I said before how I feel about this. The Trop is a lousy stadium in just about the worst location that could have been chosen for a franchise that serves the entire area. Throw in a bad economy plus the fact you can watch almost every game from the comfort of your living room on the hi-def, and it’s a no-brainer that attendance is going to be significantly affected – especially on weeknights.  But all that means is that what people outside the area are saying about this place might be true. This really might be a lousy baseball market.”

It makes me sick.  So many cities across the country would kill for a roster like the Rays have right now.

[Tampa Tribune]

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“Bad Meat” Caused Failed Drug Test Says Tour De France Winner

Is the sport of cycling still making the news?  Although I have a feeling this suspension and drug test might get overruled, this latest development can do nothing but further diminish Americans interest in the sport.  From the NY Times, “Contador, a Spaniard formerly on the Astana team, could lose the title he won this year and face a two-year suspension.  He learned about the positive test for the banned drug clenbuterol, a weight-loss and muscle-building drug, on Aug. 24, nearly a month after winning the Tour, the statement said. He had tested positive for the substance on July 21, one day before the race’s decisive mountain stage.  Contador, who has signed to ride for the Saxo Bank team next year, said he ingested the drug accidentally.  ‘The experts consulted so far have agreed also that this is a food-contamination case, especially considering the number of tests passed by Alberto Contador during the Tour de France,’ his statement said.”

Food contamination, gets you every time!

[NY Times]

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Is LT Really Back?

The Jets RB was featured in Yahoo! Sports Michael Silver’s recent column which pretty much declared just that.  I’ve watched two of the Jets’ games thus far and from what I’ve witnessed there is definitely something different about the former TCU star.  I don’t know how else to describe this, but great running backs in the NFL seem to have a “burst” button that they can activate immediately when they find the tiniest of holes in the line.  Chris Johnson has it, Adrian Peterson has it (as witnessed in his 80-yard TD last week), and LT has seemingly found it again.  The decline of an NFL running back, in my mind, is when he can no longer turn on the “burst” and get through the line anymore (see: Jacobs, Brandon or the 2009 version of LT).

From the column, ” There’s something else going on, too, a vibe I picked up upon during my visit to Jets training campin August, and one you can quantify from the body language you see on Sundays. Tomlinson is constantly slapping hands with teammates, helping them up, giving dap and getting excited.  Remember the injured star sitting alone on the bench with head covered by a hood in the Chargers’ defeat to the Patriots in the 2007 AFC championship game? LT 2.010, at least so far, is his psychic opposite.”

With all that said though, LT is not “back.”  Silver does a good job distinguishing this in the column and for that he deserves applause.  Thank god one writer didn’t jump on the Hard Knocks bandwagon.  There was no one like LT in his prime.  He ran, he caught, he even threw.  I’m surprised he didn’t beg Marty to let him kick field goals back then.  But even LT knows at this point that he’ll never be that same player again.

[Yahoo! Sports]

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Good Morning Generation

The Rockies were officially eliminated from the playoffs earlier this week bringing an unfortunate end to the incredible hot streak Troy Tulowitzki has been on.  The Rockies all-universe short stop nearly carried the team into the playoffs by himself.

Generation Y, where we just became huge Rangers supporters.