Friday, October 30, 2009

Scattershot Thoughts for October 30th

  • I wish every Saturday could be like October 24th. I've never seen our state in a better mood. No one should doubt the power of football for positive community spirit.
  • Hawkeye fans shouldn't waste time being angry at this TV talking head or that sports talk radio host. Just enjoy the ride. The BCS, flawed as it, almost always sorts itself out.
  • Paul Rhoads emotional, raw, real locker room speech to his team generated more positive publicity for Iowa State in one week than the entire two year Gene Chizik era.
  • Loved hearing stories from Cyclone and Hawkeye fans about how nervous they were in the final minute last week, and how they celebrated when the clock hit zeroes.
  • Lot of debate who deserves national coach of the year more (if the vote took place now): Rhoads or Kirk Ferentz? The right answer is Ferentz. If Iowa State had won at Arrowhead and at Kansas, you could make the case for Rhoads, but since the Cyclones didn't, you can't logically go against a coach who overcame numerous key injuries and led his team to wins at Penn State, Wisconsin, and Michigan State (not to mention, Iowa State).
  • I apologize to all the State Fair goers who cast their kernel for Iowa as the state team to win the most games. I thought the answer would be UNI. Right now, I thought wrong.
  • How can the Big 12 have a TV contract this bad?! Iowa State has already had three games not televised. It's not 1985.
  • Tim McClelland is MLB's best umpire, and a first class guy. Yes, he missed a call or two, the other 99.99% he got right. We just don't see those on an endless loop. Human error is unavoidable in baseball.
  • I like the Yankees in 7.
  • I haven't seen the Des Moines Bucs this year, though I'm looking forward to it. Are they looking any better?
  • My son was home from school with the flu and wanted to watch the latest Indiana Jones movie again. Boy, it sucks even more on a second viewing. The first hour is so promising, fueled in part by nostalgia, but once it turns to aliens and spaceships and too many special effects, it loses its way, and can't even recover with a nice ending.
  • Upset of the movie year: the rave reviews for Michael Jackson's, "This Is It".
  • My wife wants to see Paranormal Activity. One of our photojournalists, Travis Jungling, tells me it scared the living crap out of him. He's no Hassel either. He's a man's man.
  • I'm reading "Blind Side" because Jenny wants to see the movie with Sandra Bullock. When you're wife wants to see a sports movie, you celebrate. The book, so far, is terrific.
  • New TV shows I've added to the DVR: The Middle, Community, Parks & Recreation (greatly improved, and needed to be), The Good Wife, NCIS LA, Glee (sue me) and Trauma (but not for much longer). What am I missing?
  • Let me know if you hear anything about Brett Favre this weekend.
  • Andy and I enter the weekend without a costume decision for Halloween SoundOFF. Once you've been Basedow, it's all downhill.
  • New SoundOFF feature starts this week: "Ask Gary Dolphin". Mail your questions on any subject to Dolph will answer them weekly. Well, I think it's Dolph. Maybe not.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Scattershot Thoughts for October 19th

  • The Denver Broncos should never, ever wear those poop brown throwback uniforms again. It's not just that they recall the Padres at their Taco Bell worst, no one remembers the Broncos in these. If you're going back in time, pick out some of the sweet Orange Crush era uniforms. (Props to Southeast Polk's Kyle Orton on leading Denver to an unfathomable 6-0 start.)
  • Powder blue shouldn't work, but gosh it sure does on the Chargers.
  • The Patriots in the throwbacks, hanging 59 in the snow on the Titans, is a postcard. You just can't beat that Patriot snapping a football on the helmet. As for the Titans, it's too confusing and painful when they wear Oiler uniforms. It's also painful and confusing when the Titans quit trying in the second quarter.
  • A good friend of mine called me from Metallica Thursday night, and the Wiggles Saturday night. Only parents understand.
  • I just can't get into this baseball post-season. I'm trying, but I just don't have a rooting interest. I do like Kate Hudson though, and she's on TV more than anyone.
  • Is there a sadder commentary on the relentless pursuit of fame than "Balloon Boy"? Is there any way to blame this on Jon & Kate?
  • I work at an NBC station, and I like Faith Hill's "Waitin' all day for Sunday night", though surprisingly, I prefer Pink's year one version. I digress. No one jump starts a sporting event like Mr. Hank Williams Jr. For decades now, I try to be in front of the TV when Hank shouts, "ARE YOU READY FOR SOME FOOTBALL?!" It's not new, but that song works. I concede Faith is quite a bit better looking than Hank.
  • I still don't think Iowa goes 12-0, but I see nothing worse than 10-2, and 11-1 most likely of all. 10, 11, 12... whatever... it ends in a January bowl.
  • Hawk fans should enjoy every second. This happens once ever 25 years or so. Don't worry about the loss, enjoy the wins. Ignore the buzzkills. This should be the best of times.
  • The Hawkeyes have guts, chemistry, and swagger. There are far more talented teams. Many of those teams have already lost. Can't do better than 7-0.
  • Iowa State got a mulligan when Gene Chizik bolted for Auburn. Iowa State is much improved under Paul Rhoads, and for the first time since Dan McCarney left, the players are all in. The Cyclones are a few plays from 6-1, and in future seasons, they'll learn how to win those close games (like Iowa did this year).
  • I was wrong. UNI can lose to another division 1AA team. I'm shocked. And the Panthers lost at home in front of a record crowd.
  • Nebraska is one of the greatest places on earth to watch a football game. You have to respect the proud history in Lincoln. But my goodness, some of those Husker fans take themselves, and football, WAY too seriously. We've been having some fun with that on SoundOFF. The fans still don't realize we're joking.
  • Shawn Johnson's agent has done a masterful job. The celebrity shelf life of an Olympic athlete is typically so short, it borders on cruel. The fact says Shawn is the most liked sports figure in America is a testament to Shawn's appeal (and smart planning).
  • Are any of you forced to watch The Real Housewives of Atlanta? I've made mistakes. This must be payback.
  • Jeff Pearlman's latest book, "The Rocket that Fell to Earth", is the mostly fair, almost always fascinating story of Roger Clemens and his blood thirst for immortality. It leaves no doubt Clemens is a serial cheater and liar, though also thoughtful at times.
  • I want to see, and don't want to see, Paranormal Activity.
  • Jon Miller's site is all new, and for the first time all free.

Monday, October 05, 2009

Scattershot Thoughts for October 5th

  • As I write this, the ESPN announcers are going over the top on the Legend of Brett Favre, but he's somehow lived up to the hype---if that's even possible. Probably not. Like many of you, I grew sick and tired of Favre's annual diva act, I had Favretigue, but there's no doubt he's good for the NFL, and good for the Vikings. I keep watching.
  • Look for the Packers-Vikings game to be the highest rated program in the 30 year history of ESPN.
  • I like these old school Vikings uniforms better. They are not quite as Arena-league looking. The Packers are classic (as always). When the helmet matches the pants, you're off to a good start.
  • The Favre commercial where he can't make up his mind about buying a TV is funny and smart.
  • I'm excited about Michigan at Iowa, but not like I expected last week. I thought Iowa would drill Arkansas State, and Michigan would win at Michigan State, and we'd have the makings of a classic. Instead, it's just a good match-up, not a great one.
  • I picked Iowa to go 9-3 and Iowa State 5-7. I think Iowa will exceed my expectations, though if Ricky Stanzi doesn't stop making ugly plays, Iowa will lose three games. Don't forget, that road schedule is brutal. 12-0 is not going to happen.
  • No one in Iowa City was excited about playing Arkansas State. Not fans. Not coaches. Obviously not players. However, the Red Wolves found a hole in that Iowa defense other teams will try.
  • Bottom line: 5-0. First time under Ferentz. 90% of the teams in the country wish they were 5-0.
  • Iowa State fans deserve better. They are so loyal despite years of gut punches, and then they suffer another one Saturday, this one more cruel than most. We all take the PAT for granted, which is what made the high-to-low crash so much harder for Clones fans.
  • I said all last week the K-State game was a pivotal one for Iowa State, and I'm not changing views now. I think a win made a bowl possible. Don't see it happening now.
  • It's hard to get too excited about UNI games until the playoffs begin. Obviously the Panthers will be there, and they're so good, it's national championship or bust.
  • Can anybody beat Dowling Catholic this season?
  • It was great to see the old Seinfeld cast on Curb Your Enthusiasm. Not a great show, but had its moments.
  • Shows like Curb Your Enthusiasm and The Office love to make us squirm, but nothing was more uncomfortable than watching David Letterman confess how sex with staffers led to an extortion attempt. The unsuspecting audience kept laughing because they were waiting for a punch line. Smart of Letterman to get in front of the scandal, but still hard to watch, even harder to turn off.
  • This is exactly what I need: The 100 Greatest Hits of YouTube in 4 minutes:
  • Andy and I love talking sports movies on SoundOFF and our KXnO radio show weekdays from 2 to 4.

Keith's Top Ten

1 Hoosiers

2 The Natural

3 Rocky

4 Fields of Deams

5 Brian's Song

6 Bull Durham

7 Jerry Maguire

8 Miracle

9 Longest Yard (original)

10 Major League

Andy's Top Ten

1 Hoosiers

2 The Natural

3 Bad News Bears (original)

4 Rocky

5 Big Lebowski(?)

6 Hoop Dreams

7 Bull Durham

8 Major League

9 Dale Earnhardt Story

10 Slap Shot