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Posted: November 15, 2011 4:51 p.m.

Hindsight is always 20/20 for fans and the media

30 against the Tigers. The question then would be, could LSU score 31 against Oregon?

When two teams met in week one, LSU did just that but the Tigers had the advantage. That’s because defense always has the advantage in the beginning of football seasons. It typically takes offenses a couple of games to get going. Well the Ducks are rolling. They're third in the nation in scoring at 47 points per game. That’s why Oregon would give LSU all it could handle if they faced each other today.

Oregon’s offense is clearly better than LSU’s but now the Ducks have a decent defense too. It would be interesting to see how they matchup. The only reason Oregon didn’t win the national championship last year was Cam Newton. Had Oregon played any other team, chances are they would have beaten them. If they get another shot this year, I’m thinking they’ll finally break the SEC’s stranglehold on the Coaches’ Trophy. Hopefully things fall that way.

Random rumblings about all things sports

Atlanta Falcons coach Mike Smith is getting filleted by a lot of the major sports networks this week for his decision to go for a fourth-and-short in overtime against the Saint Sunday. It’s really should surprise anyone. 

The media is brutal, especially at the national level. Smith is taking heat from everyone from former players and coaches turned analysts to dorky bloggers on ESPN. He’s been an easy target. 

The Atlanta media market is soft in comparison to major markets like New York, Boston and Chicago. The Falcons don’t make headlines for the wrong reasons and for the most part, nothing really exciting goes on around the organization. Smith’s decision is the biggest story about Falcons football since Michael Vick returned with Philadelphia.

Had the Falcons picked up that one yard they needed, the media would be singing a different tune, especially if the Falcons won. Smith would be viewed as a confident risk taker with swagger. People would be praising his gutsiness. As it was, the play turned out to cost Atlanta the game. Because it was at the Falcons’ 30-yard line, all the Saints realistically needed to do was pick up 10 yards just to be safe then kick the game-winning field goal. They picked up a little more than that then kicked the game-winner.

The loss hurt the Falcons big time in the division and seriously cripples their playoff chances overall. At 5-4, they are still in the Wild Card hunt but with Chicago (6-3) and Dallas (5-4) playing well and the Lions (6-3) in the mix, Atlanta has to bounce back and win some games over the coming weeks. 

Losing against the Saints at home is tough. Handing them the game is even tougher.

Oregon can beat LSU now

Oregon rolled up Stanford Saturday and is the best one-loss team in the nation. Because LSU beat them early in the season, the Ducks can’t be considered the best team in the country. But I’m not so sure the Tigers would win again should the two teams meet in the national title game.

Considering the way the Ducks ran circles around Stanford, LSU would have its hands full. Stanford’s defense isn’t all that good and clearly LSU would be a tougher opponent to drop 53 points on. But Oregon could certainly score 30 against the Tigers. The question then would be, could LSU score 31 against Oregon?

When two teams met in week one, LSU did just that but the Tigers had the advantage. That’s because defense always has the advantage in the beginning of football seasons. It typically takes offenses a couple of games to get going. Well the Ducks are rolling. They're third in the nation in scoring at 47 points per game. That’s why Oregon would give LSU all it could handle if they faced each other today.

Oregon’s offense is clearly better than LSU’s but now the Ducks have a decent defense too. It would be interesting to see how they matchup. The only reason Oregon didn’t win the national championship last year was Cam Newton. Had Oregon played any other team, chances are they would have beaten them. If they get another shot this year, I’m thinking they’ll finally break the SEC’s stranglehold on the Coaches’ Trophy. Hopefully things fall that way.

The NBA players are just plain greedy

It looks like we won’t have an NBA season this year. While it’s not official, an end to the strike is nowhere in sight. I have my own feelings on the matter but they are very similar to what Michael Wilbon from ESPN said in a column he wrote. Here’s what he wrote:

“I’m not saying the points and all their nuances aren’t important; I’m saying that like most people, I’m tired of the debate, tired of what seems like whining over billions of dollars at a time when so many Americans are searching frantically for a second job just to pay the rent.”

That’s pretty much how a lot of us feel. These players refuse to come to an agreement with the owners and it’s over money. Just money. It’s doesn’t matter that every NBA player makes more money than most us will in a lifetime. Instead they want more of the pie.

NBA players make way too much money to begin with. Contracts have spiraled out of control and guaranteed contracts mean teams (and thus fans) are held hostage by free agents and big-contract signees. Maybe you’ve heard how this goes. A player comes up with a team, blows up then signs a 7-year, $120 million contract. In the fifth, sixth and seventh years of that contract, the team is paying the bulk of that salary. There’s not much room to sign more free agents. So in essence, a team is stuck after four years. Case in point. In 2009, Mike Bibby made $15 million. Bibby earned a huge paycheck after playing so well in the postseason for the Sacrament Kings in the early 2000s. He averaged 15 points per game that year and the rest of his numbers were pretty close to his career averages. But he wasn’t the same player he was at Sacramento. 

The NFL doesn’t guarantee contracts. No professional sport league should. Elite athletes perform at elite levels for different reasons. Rarely do they perform at that elite level for seven straight years.

The other thing to consider is, players aren’t even worth that much to begin with. The market dictates the value of a player. So when some team makes a horrible deal with an over-valued free agent, all of a sudden other horrible free agents have bargaining power. Next thing you know you’ve signed a mediocre player for $8 million or more a year — for five years no less. Again, the team is held hostage.

Just get a deal done. If you want more of the money, get into ownership. It’s sad the NBA has come to this. It was once an enjoyable product to watch. Now, the only reason it will be missed is because my wife will have to find something else to put on TV to help her fall asleep to.

 

The NBA players are just plain greedy

It looks like we won’t have an NBA season this year. While it’s not official, an end to the strike is nowhere in sight. I have my own feelings on the matter but they are very similar to what Michael Wilbon from ESPN said in a column he wrote. Here’s what he wrote:

“I’m not saying the points and all their nuances aren’t important; I’m saying that like most people, I’m tired of the debate, tired of what seems like whining over billions of dollars at a time when so many Americans are searching frantically for a second job just to pay the rent.”

That’s pretty much how a lot of us feel. These players refuse to come to an agreement with the owners and it’s over money. Just money. It’s doesn’t matter that every NBA player makes more money than most us will in a lifetime. Instead they want more of the pie.

NBA players make way too much money to begin with. Contracts have spiraled out of control and guaranteed contracts mean teams (and thus fans) are held hostage by free agents and big-contract signees. Maybe you’ve heard how this goes. A player comes up with a team, blows up then signs a 7-year, $120 million contract. In the fifth, sixth and seventh years of that contract, the team is paying the bulk of that salary. There’s not much room to sign more free agents. So in essence, a team is stuck after four years. Case in point. In 2009, Mike Bibby made $15 million. Bibby earned a huge paycheck after playing so well in the postseason for the Sacrament Kings in the early 2000s. He averaged 15 points per game that year and the rest of his numbers were pretty close to his career averages. But he wasn’t the same player he was at Sacramento. 

The NFL doesn’t guarantee contracts. No professional sport league should. Elite athletes perform at elite levels for different reasons. Rarely do they perform at that elite level for seven straight years.

The other thing to consider is, players aren’t even worth that much to begin with. The market dictates the value of a player. So when some team makes a horrible deal with an over-valued free agent, all of a sudden other horrible free agents have bargaining power. Next thing you know you’ve signed a mediocre player for $8 million or more a year — for five years no less. Again, the team is held hostage.

Just get a deal done. If you want more of the money, get into ownership. It’s sad the NBA has come to this. It was once an enjoyable product to watch. Now, the only reason it will be missed is because my wife will have to find something else to put on TV to help her fall asleep to.

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