Thursday, October 12, 2006

Thursday 10/12

NY Times coverage of Cory Lidle’s death

Lidle cleaned out his locker on Sunday, the day after the Yankees were eliminated from the playoffs. As he chatted informally with reporters, Lidle talked about aviation, a favorite topic of his since he earned his pilot’s license in four and a half months last winter.

At one point, Lidle motioned across the room in the direction of Munson’s locker. He said that the full report of Munson’s accident was on the Web site of the National Transportation Safety Board. He also said he had read the report of the accident that killed John F. Kennedy Jr.

Lidle knew the risks of his hobby, but he never seemed to worry about them. When asked by The New York Times in September if he was ever scared in the air, Lidle seemed puzzled by the question.

“It’s fun,” he said. “It doesn’t bother me.”

Check out this link Of a reconstruction of the accident ..

Lidle feature from early September

When the Yankees fly, the pilots are not only in the cockpit. There is another pilot in the main cabin, where the players sit. He is probably studying his hand-held Global Positioning System receiver, tracking the weather and noting the plane’s precise speed and altitude.

He is Cory Lidle, who has been a major league pitcher for nine years and a pilot for seven months. He earned his pilot’s license last off-season and bought a four-seat airplane for $187,000. It is a Cirrus SR20, built in 2002, with fewer than 400 hours in the air.

A player-pilot is still a sensitive topic for the Yankees, whose captain, Thurman Munson, was killed in the crash of a plane he was flying in 1979. Lidle, acquired from the Philadelphia Phillies on July 30, said his plane was safe.

“The whole plane has a parachute on it,” Lidle said. “Ninety-nine percent of pilots that go up never have engine failure, and the 1 percent that do usually land it. But if you’re up in the air and something goes wrong, you pull that parachute, and the whole plane goes down slowly.”

List of Athletes who have died in airplanes

Owens begins to talk

As he did during the game, Owens on Wednesday wondered about his role in the offense but added that he doesn't regret signing with the Cowboys in March.

"I do question why I am here," he said. "That's not to create a story, but it's just like, I want to win. I came here to help this team win."

The Cowboys are 2-2, and Owens has 17 receptions for 232 yards and a touchdown. Through four games with the Eagles last season, Owens had 32 catches for 506 yards and four touchdowns.

"I haven't even gotten started yet," Owens said. "Honestly guys, I know with the years I've had in the league and the teams I've played on, I know I'm very used to being more involved in the offense ... [with those teams] making more of a conscious effort with my talent to make some plays.

"So far [with the Cowboys], that hasn't happened."

Owens' history with Jeff Garcia in San Francisco and Donovan McNabb in Philadelphia might make any slight toward Bledsoe – real or perceived – an issue.

Bledsoe said he has not heard any of Owens' postgame comments and doesn't care to know what was said. After the game, Bledsoe sent Owens a text message that read, "Stay with me." On Monday, Bledsoe, Owens and receiver Terry Glenn watched game film and worked out together.

Texans prepare to blitz Bledsoe

Bledsoe realizes the Texans are the next ones waiting to knock him down.

"They changed their personality against the Dolphins," Bledsoe said. "Over half the snaps in the game they brought some sort of pressure, either with the linebacker blitz or safety blitz. Combine that with the trouble that we had against the Eagles in handling some of their pressure, and we believe they're probably going to come after us this game and make us prove that we can deal with their pressure defense."

Cowboys coach Bill Parcells made it clear earlier in the week that he was sticking with Bledsoe as the starting quarterback. Even as the pressure mounts around Bledsoe, Parcells said he isn't worried about the veteran's mindset.

"When you have been around as long as he has, or you've been around as long as I have as a coach, if you don't have a little bit of a turtle shell by now, it would be unusual," Parcells said. "Because you are going to get criticized, and that's just part of business."

John McClain examines the Texans chances for Sunday

Cowboys fans in Houston have waited for four years — an eternity to them — for a chance to get revenge. Cowboys fans in the rest of the state don't even acknowledge that Texas has another NFL team.

What are the odds the Texans can pull off another shocker? About 1,000 to 1, perhaps even 1 million to one?

The Cowboys aren't after revenge. They're trying to bounce back from a disappointing
loss at Philadelphia.

The Texans are trying to win their second consecutive game. They don't feel the deep-seated hostility — envy? — that their fans feel, but they understand the significance of Sunday's game. It's about respect. It's about rewarding the loyalty of fans who haven't abandoned them.

Imagine what a victory Sunday would mean to the Texans. It would give them a 2-3 record going into the Jacksonville game at Reliant Stadium. They would have a chance to be 3-3 after a horrendous start in Gary Kubiak's first season. Imagine the excitement in Houston.

Yes, it's just a fantasy, not reality. The Texans are decisive underdogs to the Cowboys, who should trounce them without breaking a sweat. And the Jaguars will be favored to do the same.

But what if?

Do you believe in miracles?

Only in the Bible and the Winter Olympics.

Meanwhile, in Rangers news, The list is developing

The Rangers are in the final stages of narrowing their candidates for the managerial job, and one thing is certain: The new manager will be a first-time major league manager.

None of the candidates who remain on the list have ever managed in the major leagues.

"We're very close to [a final list]," general manager Jon Daniels said. "Obviously, it's a very important decision. We've been talking to people in the industry whose opinion we value. The most important factor we're looking for is an intelligent person who can create and establish trust within the clubhouse and organization and somebody who can create a positive environment."

A team source confirmed the list includes Rangers bench coach Don Wakamatsu, Oakland third base coach Ron Washington and manager Trey Hillman of Nippon Ham of Japan's Pacific League. The Rangers have also added New York Mets third base coach Manny Acta to the list.

Acta's apartment building in New York was the one struck by Yankees pitcher Cory Lidle's plane Wednesday. "I was in a state of shock," Acta told The Washington Post, "because I had just left the building."

The club will not pursue Lou Piniella or another "big-name" former manager. Also, Los Angeles Angels pitching coach Bud Black, whom the Rangers had researched, has opted to stay in Southern California rather that pursue a managerial job elsewhere. And former Minnesota manager Tom Kelly declined to interview.

You know what the cynic might say about “first-time managers”? They are dirt cheap. You didn’t think they would pay Buck and a new big contract did you?

Revo looks at the pitching mistakes

That brings us to the wonderful year of 2002. Grady Fuson led the Rangers' drafting party. Convinced there were no great pitchers available, he spent the 10th pick on infielder Drew Meyer, who may someday actually be a utility infielder in the majors. Maybe.

The array of talent that came in the first round after Meyer is mind-boggling. Outfielder Jeremy Hermida, pitcher Joe Saunders, shortstop Khalil Greene, pitcher Scott Kazmir, outfielder Jeff Francoeur, pitcher Joe Blanton, pitcher Matt Cain and third baseman Mark Teahen were all selected after Meyer.

Ask no more why Fuson isn't still with the Rangers.

Big 12 mid term report cards


Grade: A-

Defending national champs have played dominating ball since the loss to No. 1 Ohio State. Colt McCoy has emerged as the early leader in quarterback efficiency, the beneficiary of a squad stacked at every other position. The Longhorns still have a tough two-game road swing later this month against Nebraska and Texas Tech, but should claim back-to-back conference titles for the first time in a decade.
Second-half projection: Up. The Longhorns have the kind of schedule built for a strong finishing kick. If they win out, they still might have a shot at defending their national championship.

Bowl forecast: Fiesta vs. Boise State
Texas A&M

Grade: B

Dennis Franchione remains on the griddle, mostly because of unimpressive victories
and yet another loss to Texas Tech. Agitated Aggies quickly forget that this team is one pass deflection away from being unbeaten. Gary Darnell's new 4-2-5 defense has played well, but really hasn't shut down a high-powered opponent yet. A&M will see plenty of those in the next few weeks.

Second-half projection: Same. If the Aggies win Saturday against Missouri, they should nail down winnable road games against Oklahoma State and Baylor. But November games against Oklahoma, Nebraska and Texas will determine how the season is framed and whether Franchione gets fried.

Bowl forecast: Alamo vs. Wisconsin


Grade: C+

The Sooners' Big 12 title hopes are on life support after last Saturday's showdown loss to Texas. The rest of the season will give Adrian Peterson a chance to pile up rushing yardage and Bob Stoops the chance to groom a better team for next season.
Second-half projection: Down. The Sooners can look forward to another six weeks of not being noticed, except by opponents eager to place them in their upset crosshairs.

Bowl forecast: Gator vs. Va. Tech

Texas Tech
Grade: C

The Red Raiders struggled in losses to TCU and Missouri, not something the folks in Lubbock were expecting. Graham Harrell has kept up the beat at quarterback, but caught much of the blame for the loss to Missouri. Mike Leach hasn't hesitated to rip his team for its lack of effort at times. There's no sign he has given his last lecture this fall.

Second-half projection: Same. The Red Raiders have a manageable schedule and a big game at home against Texas, but might be lucky to split their remaining games.
Bowl forecast: Insight vs. Purdue

After many days off, the Stars will now play 3 games in 4 nights against division rivals at their place. The first two at the Staples Center against the Kings, and they have a kid everyone is talking about in hockey:

Anze Kopitar

Kopitar is all the rage …And he is 19…

Sure you know about Evgeni Malkin in Pittsburgh and Phil Kessel in Boston, but if you want to see three unheralded rookies, look west to the three California teams, where you will find a trio of freshmen flying under the radar.

Anze Kopitar, Los Angeles. He schooled Chris Pronger on opening night, scored two goals and will center L.A.'s first line. He's the real deal … and he's the first NHL player from Slovenia, which had the tidiest war of independence in history. It started on a Friday in 1991, and was over by the following Monday. His roommate is a good omen, too: Brian Willsie roomed with Alexander Ovechkin in Washington last season.

Anze Kopitar – 1:10

Flyers vs Senators – 4:06

Texans vs Cowboys (September 2002) 9:00


Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

what are the chances Drew Bledsoe might take up aviation as a hobby?....i would now like to apologize to god, santa, and the people of america....

Anonymous said...

It's amazing the hype for Sunday's game in Houston. Meanwhile, it's barely a blip on the radar in Dallas. Definitely a lot of Cowboys envy going on down in Houston...

Brandon at GSR said...

Aggy gets a B?

I'd give them a D just for being the second largest school in the state but having the 4th or 5th best program.

Anonymous said...

A&M gets a B? Really? Those "big wins" against Army and Kansas must have clouded the writers mind. I don't even need to read the rest of the article as it's obviously nonsense.

MR said...

could the city of houston suck any more? the answer is no, it cant.

Anonymous said...

Aggy gets a B, yet Tech gets a C? I guess they missed the game in College Station the weekend before last. We'll see how good Aggy looks after Mizzou blows thru there on Saturday. Aggy finishes no better than 7-5 this year, you can mark that down right now.

Brandon at GSR said...

I think Alec Baldwin has a baby arm

Anonymous said...

Sounds like we have some bitter Tech fans here. Tech beats A&M last minute, lose to Missou = Aggies definitely lose to Missou??? Good logic.

Anonymous said...

no, I think it's more like

Aggies Suck = Aggies definitely lose to Mizzou

Brandon at GSR said...

Aggies struggle against Army = Aggie loss to Mizzou.

Anonymous said...

aggie coaached by fran = aggie loss to mizzou

Anonymous said...

aggie program peaked in 1939 = aggie loss to mizzou

Fake Sturm said...

Oh my...Baldwin is so mad that he is about to stick his babyarm in that guys mouth. Great find Brandon.

Fake Sturm said...

Isnt the SA Newspaper the one Bob swears by for college football news? Sure seems like they whiffed there with a B for aggy. Do you think they actually watch the games or just look at the record. And second-half projection of....the same??? Even the most homeristic aggy alive knows they wont duplicate that 5-1 record down the stretch. This guy cant be serious.

Anonymous said...


TheDude said...

Geez, what's with the dog-pile of the Aggies? I don't particularly agree with the assessment of the SA dude either, but I'm a little surprised at how everyone here likes to get after them for everything.

Seriously, why is that? Is is because all the Aggies heralded Fran as the second coming of Knute Rockne, and now that that isn't (won't?) happening, people are voicing pleasure at the failure with hands rubbing together and an evil grin? Are Aggies really any more arrogant than fans of any other college sports team? Do they really feel more entitled to a division/conference/national title any more than any other program?

Or maybe the Aggies just don't read the board and/or comment?

Anonymous said...

male cheerleaders grabbing their nuts and you wonder why they get dogpiled?

Anonymous said...

[quote]Are Aggies really any more arrogant than fans of any other college sports team?[/quote]

Uh, no......not as long as there exists that bunch in asstin

Anonymous said...

Aggies are not arrogant. You have to be good at something to be arrogant.

Robert Bentley said...

It's hilarious to see the Aggies fail, for several reasons. First, most non-ATM fans see through the "mystique" and "tradition" to a program that, for all its bluster, has as many Heisman winners and national championships as TCU (one each). Second, the obsession with Texas, to the point of writing their fight song about them, is a little pathetic. People laugh at ATM's inferiority complex for the same reason they laugh at the Coyote's sad attempts to catch the Road Runner. Third, almost all their girls are teases.

cracker1743 said...

Dude -- obviously, this is a 'sip/sooner-dominated board. Only two Aggies here I know of. As far as obsession goes, yeah we name check t.u. in the fight song, but obsession seems to be a 2-way street. Isn't that right, Fake Sturm, Robert Bentley, and the multitude of Anonymi? (I mean, if "Fake Sturm" IS your REEEAL name?) But anyway, it's hard to argue with the nutgrabbing thing (which I'd never heard of before, and pray I never see again), the Army "win", and the f*cking freefall we've taken, so I've pretty much resigned myself to flipping through my mid-late '80s Aggie yearbooks and longing for the days when we kicked 'sip ass on a regular basis. Oh Bucky, I still love you...

Now, on to more pleasant things, like Cory Lidle jokes and Houston sports radio...

Man, I can't wait for this Cowboys/Texans game to be over with, just so the radio spares here in Houston will quit whipping me with "Ooooh, you Cowboy fans have been aching for revenge for 4 years" blah blah blah. Um, not really. I don't and haven't ever given the Texans much thought, except when they blackout 4 or 5 Cowboy games down here each year just because some juco team has a home game. (And thanks to the NFL radio gestapo, I can't even HEAR those games).

Wes Mantooth said...

The sooner rivalry is alive and well (for obvious reasons) with most Texas Alumni and fans. But aggy is an afterthought to many of us. We have only lost to aggy one time since 1998 (bon fire game). When aggy starts acting gay and saying things like t.u. and 'sips and grabbing their sacks on national tv, I am not sure if I should feel sad for them (like you feel when you see a retarded child) or just wish continued failure on them because they are so annoying and give the State of Texas a bad name.

As my favorite t-shirt says:

Aggies suck,
Sooners swallow.

Jay Clendenin said...

it's funny to see tech alumn (or worse...people who couldn't get into tech) or OU, etc. make fun of a&m. and it's also very telling when someone judges a school's quality based solely on the school's football record. a&m beats the S out of every other school as far as academics and job placement goes, besides UT (which it's on par with). so just since you couldn't get into a&m, it's ok. no worries.

cracker1743 said...

Oh, wait, my bad. t.u. and sips = gay, but aggy = cool. Ok. Got it.

I sure am glad the resurgence of the Longhorn football program hasn't caused it's fans to relapse into arrogant jerkoffs. Oh, wait, sorry 'bout that, too...

Anonymous said...

Brandon at GSR = Fake Sturm = Wes Mantooth = Robert Bentley = biased, Aggie-obsessed haters

Which is why Aggies don't respond often to their posts. They are as legitimate as the most homer of Aggies.

Everything will cycle. It won't be long until it will be like pre-Stoops when we didn't even realize sooner existed.

By then fake sturm will have grown out of the obsession.

Wes Mantooth said...

Jay has a point. I am just guessing that most of us did not play football at our respective universities. I didn't pick Texas because of football. In fact, we weren't that good when I got there (you know, that dark age before Mack Brown). But Jay, this is a sports blog and in the sports world Tech has scoreboard on ATM. And admit it, if your team was good, you would not be talking about academics.

So scoreboard red raider when you deposit your paycheck, but carrying your W-2 around doesn't help stop people from making fun of a school that used to pride itself on football. Trust me. White trash sooner fans owned us for 5 long years.