I usually put the email at the end, but to make sure it is tougher to completely ignore, here is a little bit for you up top:
Just wanted to send a quick email thanking you for your blog. I am visiting my wifes family in India and getting any sports news is difficult at best. Thanks to your blog I had to only visit one page to figure out what was happening in the Dallas area. Off to watch the cricket match between India and the West Indies.
I would hope the one year anniversary of the BaD Radio Forum tomorrow will merit a mention in Friday's blog, perhaps with a link to encourage blog folks to visit? Former intern, Sean and our leader, Grubes have done a tremendous job in keeping the forum going. They deserve some props.
The Popsicle Stick Chick
Visit the BaD Radio Forums Here …
And of the 100 “Bad Radio Jinx” emails that were sent to me, this one made me smile the most:
I know you've been getting a ton of this crap but how about a weekly segment with Tim Duncan?I would really look forward to hearing Donovan Mcnabb as well.While we’re at it,a weekly show with a North Korean dictator would be very informative.
Now, starting with plenty of Cowboys-Romo reading, let’s go:
As you watch the new quarterback, however, scramble for his life Sunday in Charlotte, save a few boos also for the confused souls wearing Cowboys jerseys who are supposed to be blocking the blitz.
Better yet, boo the assistant coach (Tony Sparano) who is alleged to be coaching them. Sparano is also listed as Bill Parcells' "running game coordinator," not to be confused with Todd Haley, the passing game coordinator.
A quick question: Have these two gentlemen ever met?
So much for Cowboys coordination. Where are the angry callers and the newspaper stories this week, railing about the offense?
Instead, many in the area media appear to be busy this week, dancing at Tony Romo's coronation ball. The only pause was to document Bledsoe's public humiliation after he had visited the principal's office.
Bledsoe handled his news conference with dignity. Meanwhile, resident clown/receiver Terrell Owens was hailing Romo's promotion and saying that he planned to bake cookies for the new quarterback. How classy.
Parcells has wisely told his team not to publicly take sides in the quarterback controversy. But you watch.
Any player who participates in a "survey" or otherwise expresses his QB preference is a coward, because he's helping to deflect the blame from this 3-3 season only to Bledsoe. Losing, disappointing teams are often eager to look for scapegoats, especially when the media -- and the head coach -- are offering one up on a silver-starred platter.
Be generous with your booing, therefore. Not all the worthy targets are named Bledsoe.
Richie Whitt …
For Romo to actually lead Dallas to a Super Bowl, he’d have to do it with the worst pedigree of any big-game quarterback in NFL history. Of the 56 quarterbacks to start the 40 Super Bowls, only St. Louis’ Kurt Warner and Carolina’s Jake Delhomme were, like Romo, neither drafted by an NFL team nor offered a scholarship to a Division I college. Still, Warner (from Northern Iowa) and Delhomme (Louisiana-Lafayette) had some credentials. Warner won an Arena League championship; Delhomme, a title in NFL Europe. Romo (from Eastern Illinois), um, beat out two Drews.
There have been small-school surprises to make Super Bowls, such as Terry Bradshaw (Louisiana Tech), Phil Simms (Morehead State) and Rich Gannon (Delaware), but all were compelling enough in college to at least get drafted. Simply put, Parcells–who had the audacity to compare Romo to Johnny Unitas–is counting on Romo to do something that’s never been done in the history of football. Says Troy Aikman, “I think the Cowboys are crossing their fingers that they’re going to find a diamond in the rough.”
And don’t come in here with those Delhomme comparisons. Last week in Cincinnati Jake threw an interception in the end zone. After 41 red-zone touchdowns, it was the first pick of his career inside an opponents’ 20. Romo threw one on his 25th NFL pass.
Struggling NFL teams occasionally bench starting quarterbacks into a season looking for a spark, as the Cowboys have done this week with Drew Bledsoe.
Most of the time, that team's problems are bigger than the quarterback position. But occasionally the strategy works – twice this decade, in fact. One team even used a quarterbacking change as the impetus for an NFL title.
That was the Baltimore Ravens in 2000. The Ravens were scuffling along at 5-3 with Tony Banks at quarterback. But the offense was nonexistent. Baltimore went 16 consecutive quarters without scoring a touchdown when coach Brian Billick finally benched Banks in favor of Trent Dilfer.
The Ravens went on to win 11 of Dilfer's 12 starts, culminating in a 34-7 romp over the New York Giants in the Super Bowl. Dilfer passed for 12 touchdowns in his eight regular-season starts and three more in the playoffs – generating enough offense for the Ravens to win their first NFL championship.
In 2002, the Pittsburgh Steelers struggled to an 0-2 start and were trailing Cleveland 13-6 in the fourth quarter when coach Bill Cowher yanked Kordell Stewart in favor of Tommy Maddox.
Maddox rallied Pittsburgh to win that game in overtime and then posted an 8-2 record
down the stretch to propel the Steelers to an AFC Central title.
So seasons can be salvaged with a strategic change at quarterback. But in the case of both Baltimore and Pittsburgh, an older, more experienced quarterback replaced a younger one. That won't be the case with Tony Romo replacing Bledsoe.
Clarence Hill …
He's 26. His career is in front of him. And the position that has plagued the Cowboys and cost them both monetarily and in wins would finally be settled.
The other scenario is one the Cowboys are familiar with but don't want to think about: What if he doesn't perform to a satisfactory level to play into 2007?
"I'm not worried about that," Cowboys coach Bill Parcells said, when asked about Romo's potential impact on the franchise beyond this season.
"Because I'm worried about this one game," he said.
Beyond this one game, however, there will be free-agent quarterbacks available in the coming winter. But it's not an especially attractive lot; it will likely be occupied by the likes of Aaron Brooks, Kurt Warner, Patrick Ramsey, Jake Plummer, etc.
That would leave the Cowboys to look at the draft. The last time they selected a quarterback was Quincy Carter in the second round of the 2001 draft.
The many components of selecting a quarterback high in the draft have deterred Jones from doing it for only the second time since taking Aikman with the No. 1 pick in 1989. It's the big money. It's a salary cap hit. It's the notion that to pick from a high spot, one season has already been bad and that the season when the rookie quarterback plays probably won't be much better.
And let's not kid ourselves or become delusional with this creeping next-guy syndrome. The odds are stacked heavily against Romo succeeding. Come on, tell me, how many undrafted quarterbacks are starting in the NFL today?
Don't sweat it, got the answer for you: Three out of 32, and one of those, Damon Huard, does so in Kansas City because of the injured Trent Green. The second is Jon Kitna for the 1-5 Detroit Lions, and he first entered the NFL in 1996. And the third is . . . .
Carolina's Jake Delhomme, who didn't earn a starting job until his seventh season in the NFL. And how ironic is this meeting, a collision of sorts for the Cowboys:
What might be vs. What could have been.
Remember, Delhomme made a stop here with the Cowboys on his free-agency tour that off-season. Parcells was very interested in the self-made quarterback, who spent his first six years with the Saints. But the Cowboys only offered him a backup opportunity, along with backup pay while Carolina handed him a $1 million signing bonus and the opportunity to compete for a starting job with Rodney Peete a day later.
The Cowboys wanted to see it through with . . . Quincy Carter, the very same reason that year the Cowboys selected Terence Newman with the fifth pick in the draft instead of grabbing Byron Leftwich, who was drafted by Jacksonville two picks later. Yep, Carter, that guy again.
Surely offensive, but funny as heck as kissmesuzy looks at Bledsoe v Romo ….
Back to Richie Whitt, Some BaD Radio Curse talk …
The Red Sox were once stricken by The Curse of the Bambino; the Cubs are mired in The Curse of the Billy Goat; the Rangers are infected with The Curse of Sucking, and the Sports Illustrated jinx seems alive. But nothing–and I mean nothing–is more lethal than The BaD Radio Curse.
The toxic coagulation of Bob Sturm and Dan McDowell has already claimed as victims Brad Wilkerson (new Rangers acquisition had 116 strikeouts and only 71 hits this season), Bill Guerin (Stars forward hampered by debilitating bloody thigh, released last summer), Gabe Kapler (Rangers brawny slugger sucked, finally traded to Rockies), Dan Campbell (released by Cowboys), Nick Van Exel (traded by Mavs to Golden State in a package that included Antoine Rigadeau) and Bobby Knight (food fight with Tech’s chancellor ring a bell?), who each mysteriously fell on extremely hard times in conjunction with their weekly Ticket show. The latest casualty? You guessed it: Drew Bledsoe.
The former starting quarterback’s show, normally on Wednesday, is pushed back to Thursday at 2 p.m. this week because of the Monday night game against the Giants, during which Bledsoe was pulled to start the second half. If Bledsoe hasn’t up and quit yet, maybe Bob will address the curse with its latest victim.
“I defend this by saying that this is the nature of the beast,” Sturm tries to explain to Unfair Park. “We have been in Dallas since 1998, which means that we could have had any local athlete besides Mike Modano and Dirk Nowitzki on our show and it would have ended the same way. That is pro sports. They may have good times along the way, but it all ends with goodbye.”
Meanwhile, we now have College Football Battles to discuss:
Longhorns visit Lubbock for a battle …
Like the Summer Olympics, leap year and presidential elections, the Texas Longhorns can count on something every four years:
A loss to Texas Tech in Lubbock.
It happened in 1994, 1998 and 2002. What about 2006?
When it comes to visiting West Texas, though, the Longhorns more appropriately have been road kill.
Two of the four losses during their impressive stretch have been in Lubbock, where the Red Raiders won 42-35 in '98 and 42-38 in '02. Since the arrival of Brown, the Longhorns are 2-2 at Tech compared to 23-2 on the road against the rest of the Big 12.
Going back further, Texas is 5-5 in the last 10 meetings on the South Plains and 10-9 since 1968.
"We know their fans will call us all sorts of names — throwing tacos and everything," junior wide receiver Limas Sweed said.
The Longhorns' 51-21 victory over the Red Raiders two years ago in Lubbock has been the closest to one-sided in the series' recent history. Seven of the last 10 games have been decided by two touchdowns or less.
The two most recent losses to Tech have come with a high price tag for the Longhorns.
In 1998, Texas Tech scored with 25 seconds left to upset No. 18 Texas. The loss clinched the Big 12 South title for Texas A&M.
In 2002, Texas Tech quarterback Kliff Kingsbury threw for 473 yards and six touchdowns to lead the Red Raiders to a 42-38 upset over the No. 4 Longhorns. The late-season loss ruined Texas' chances of reaching the Big 12 title game.
Texas' road records against Big 12 opponents under Mack Brown.
Texas Tech 2-2
Texas A&M 3-1
Kansas State 1-1
Oklahoma State 4-0
Iowa State 2-0
Baylor prepares for Aggies …
When you’ve gone 18 years without a win in the series, it’s easy to get a little inferiority complex. But the Bears ended that embarrassing string with a 35-34 overtime victory in 2004 and then dominated last year’s game before losing in OT, 16-13. “Our guys don’t feel intimidated by them, by any means,” BU defensive coordinator Bill Bradley said. Baylor’s had its back to the wall since a 1-3 start in conference and still needs to win two of its last four to become bowl-eligible. Maroon attire won’t be hard to find, but with a crowd of more than 45,000 expected, this will be far from Kyle Field North. As of Thursday, Baylor students had already picked up nearly all of their allotment of approximately 11,000 tickets.
Why isn’t Baylor/A&M not on TV? …
Sometimes, life is a matter of timing. There are only three Big 12 games on television Saturday because FSN is showing an afternoon Pac-10 game. Next weekend, there are five windows, which means only one game won't be televised.
Texas A&M fans, understandably, aren't happy that A&M-Baylor wasn't picked up for TV. In an effort to address their concerns, athletic director Bill Byrne spent three pages of his weekly letter to fans on A&M's Web site on TV topics.
Based on some messages from A&M fans, I'm not sure the 12th Man is uniformly satisfied by Byrne's efforts to explain the tangled web of collegiate TV agreements. But he did make some worthwhile and informative points.
Byrne is charged with hewing to the bottom line of A&M athletics, a task that can on occasion conflict with the view of fans who see the athletic department as akin to a public utility — that it has the responsibility to televise every game, regardless of the impact on the bottom line.
Space precludes addressing all of Byrne's points. However, one thing that bears elaboration, pun intended, is what he said about pay per view.
Byrne wrote that A&M will not show a home game on PPV until it sells out Kyle Field on a season-ticket basis. He told me that A&M reserves 30,000 tickets for its student body and has sold about 38,000 season tickets, so it needs to sell another 14,000 to sell out the stadium.
If that sounds like a lot, consider that Texas has sold 74,000 season tickets this season.
Now consider Baylor, which, as the home team, would have the right to put Saturday's game on pay per view. As of last Saturday, Baylor had about 10,000 unsold tickets for the game at Floyd Casey Stadium, which seats about 45,000 when the south end zone is covered with tarps. It decided Thursday to open the end zone, which will increase capacity to 50,000, and is now down to 4,500 unsold tickets in both end zones.
If the game were on PPV, Baylor wouldn't be opening up the end zone, and it certainly would have more unsold tickets. And it would miss out on the concessions revenue generated by those fans, including Aggies, who will come to Waco because the game isn't televised. That will benefit Baylor's coffers more than the 25 percent cut it would receive from pay-per-view revenues.
From the “no way” department, Todd Haley’s wife found a rat in her salad? …
A Dallas Cowboys coach, his wife and the family's nanny have sued a McDonald's owner, alleging they found a dead rat in a salad purchased at a Southlake restaurant.
The lawsuit, which seeks $1.7 million in damages, was filed Thursday in state district court on behalf of Cowboys passing-game coordinator Todd Haley, his wife, Christine Haley, and the family's live-in baby sitter, Kathryn Kelley.
"We tried to work this out," said Scott Casterline, a spokesman for the Haley family.
"We were forced to file a lawsuit. It's a tragic situation for any family to go through.
"Something has to be done to prevent this from ever happening again and to help these ladies to get over this."
Jay-Z and the NBA join forces again …
Maybe the most important link of the blog today: Klinsmann in discussions to take over US National team! …Hire him, Hire him, Hire him, Hire him, Hire him…
Juergen Klinsmann is talking with the U.S. Soccer Federation about the possibility of taking over as coach of the American national team.
Klinsmann, who coached his native Germany to a surprising berth in the World Cup semifinals this summer, is regarded by many as the favorite to replace Bruce Arena, who was told by new USSF president Sunil Gulati in mid-July that his contract would not be renewed.
"We've had a couple of conversations. I'm evaluating everything that comes up," Klinsmann said Thursday in a telephone interview with The Associated Press. "I'll stay in touch with Sunil and see what it leads to. It's a very casual and relaxed correspondence."
Klinsmann resigned as Germany's coach three days after the tournament, saying he wanted to spend more time with his family. He lives in suburban Los Angeles with his American-born wife.
"Sooner or later, I have to get back into coaching," Klinsmann said.
And now, for today’s youtube, I offer you the singing Hispanic goal calls and Robot Chicken’s very own Lil Hitler. Enjoy.
Fox Sports Espanol guys