Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Catching up with Karl Mecklenburg

Catching up with my all time favorite Bronco, #77 Karl Mecklenburg......

When No. 77 hit someone, the city of Denver quaked, rumbled and shook. Sports Illustrated once dubbed him the “Snow Goose” – partially because of his Minnesota upbringing, partially because of his fair skin. But there was nothing peaceful about the way he played defense for the Denver Broncos.

As a 12 th -round pick in 1983 – the 310 th overall selection, to be exact – he overcame plenty of obstacles just to make an NFL roster. He was undersized for a lineman, but had never played linebacker in his life. He was given jersey No. 77 because he began his journey at defensive end, but when it was finished, he'd played nearly every position on Denver's defense.

Click on the link for the rest of the story

From Mile High Sports Magazine

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

One more game left and I don't have to see this until next year

First things first, the Spurs are a better team than the Denver Nuggets. I can except that. The Nuggets bench has contributed nothing in this series and there's no evidence to suggest that that's going to change in Game 5 in San Antonio. Meanwhile, Robert Horry and Manu Ginobli coming off the Spurs bench have been key to the Spurs 3-1 series advantage. As hard and as well as the Spurs play together, is there a team in the NBA that whines more than the Spurs? The whole Tim Duncan/Joey Crawford episode could not have come at a worse time for the Nuggets. Tim Duncan has been called for one personal foul in nearly 2 and a half games of playoff basketball, mean while Carmelo is getting assaulted by two and sometimes three Spurs and is called for FOUR offensive fouls in one game. That's right 4 offensive fouls in one game. It's a head scratcher. The inconsistent officiating aside, the Nuggs have looked lost out on the court the last 3 games and only Nene and Carmelo have played with any inconsistency. It's hard to imagine any scenario where the Nuggets are able to get this thing back to Denver and not bow out of the playoffs in 5 games for the fourth straight year.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Friends till the end...

I came across this article this morning in the Denver Post. It describes childhood friends Otis Armstrong (former Denver Broncos running back) and Darryl Stingley's (former New England Patriots WR) relationship growing up together, attneding Purdue together and the paths that took them to the NFL and dealing with tradgedy. A great read. Click on the link below

Stingley's death hurts Armstrong

NFL draft coverage

Anyone else tired of the endless NFL draft coverage? Don't get me wrong, I love the draft but any yahoo can make a mock draft and ESPN and the NFL Network have inundated us with endless (and mindless) draft "countdowns". Gah, I get it. The draft is this weekend and Calvin Johnson is the best prospect in 10 years, Amobi Okoye is just 19 years old, Brady Quinn went to Notre Dame, JaMarcus Russell can throw the ball over that there mountain from his knees and so on. This weekend also marks the return of the hair, Mel Kiper Jr. This dork is actually a genius, not in that his takes on the latest batch of college kids has any validity or accuracy, because he has made a very successful career of being wrong, a lot, and ESPN still pays him. Actually I'm a little jealous, I'd love to be wrong as often as Kiper is and still keep my job. I digress. With that I present to you my 2007 mock draft.

1. Raiders-Who Cares?
2. Detroit-Matt Millen is an idiot, he'll fuck it up
3. Cleveland-Another colossal failure at a position of need
4 Tampa Bay- Lee Roy Selmon
5. Arizona-Does it matter?
6. Washington- Daniel Snyder trades pick for _______ entire draft and manages to not get a single contributer
7. Minnesota-Okay, you know what I don't care and I don't have a clue....

I can't do this. All that I care about is who the Denver Broncos draft. Hopefully the needs at DL, S, OT and WR are addressed and then everyone of the so called draft experts can rip each of these kids to shreds and tell us how much of a reach each prospect was. Sadly, I will be watching as each one of these kids is ripped to shreds and then I'll be logging on to the message boards to see other fans and draft experts takes and try to convince my self that the broncos have improved. So, I'm sick of all the pontificating and speculating but yet, like a moth to a flame, I'm drawn to all this hype and coverage. Arggghhhhhhhh!!!! What's my problem!!!!!

Friday, April 06, 2007

The ever changing landscape of College Basketball

It's amazing what a couple of coaching moves can do to effect College Basketball. I'm so glad CU got Jeff Bzdelik signed, sealed and delivered earlier this week. Because there are now two Big 12 schools that are searching for a head coach and Arkansas has been left at the alter by Creighton head coach Dana Altman (in what turned out to be a very bizarre 24 hours for both Altman and the Razorbacks). So let's take a look at what has transpired in the coaching ranks over the last few weeks.

In November, the University of Minnesota fired their head coach Dan Monson. Fast forward to March where beleaguered University of Kentucky coach Tubby Smith resigned to take the Minnesota job shortly after the Wildcats were ousted from the NCAA Tourney by Villanova. Now, everyone in the bluegrass state is waiting for the University of Florida to finish their tourney run so that Kentucky could talk to the hottest coach in CBB, Gators Head Coach Billy Donovan. Coming off a second consecutive National Championship Donovan's price probably jumped up, but that was no obstacle for the UK Wildcats right? Well, no price was not the obstacle apparently, actually talking to Donovan was. Donovan announced he was coming back to the Gators shortly after winning on Monday, and the UK Wildcats were left holding their you know what's in their hands. Kentucky then approached Texas head man Rick Barnes about the vacancy. As the folk in Austin held their collective breath, Barnes interviewed with UK only to say "thanks but no thanks". Next in line: Texas A&M head coach Billie Gillespie who accepted the UK job. Slight jump in basketball tradition, no? Now, aTm is in search of a new coach and their run of 3 consecutive 20+ win seasons could be in jeopardy. Not only is aTm losing their head coach, but there are rumors swirling that a prized 7 foot recruit maybe following Gillespie to Lexington. Got all that?

On March 18th, the University of Michigan fired head coach Tommy Amaker after an up and down six years at the helm of the Wolverines. Earlier this week the Wolverines hired West Virginia coach John Beilein, who had just lead the Mountaineers to the NIT Championship and prior to that had lead the Mountaineers to the Elite Eight and the Sweet 16 in the NCAA Tournament. It did not take long for the Mountaineers to contact homegrown Bob Huggins, the former Mountaineer All American who grew up in Morgantown, along with attending WVU. Huggins, more (in)famously of the University of Cincinnati where he had some great teams but was also followed by a black cloud stemming from a drunk driving arrest, low to zero graduation rates and for running what was perceived as renegade yet very successful program. Finally, Cinnci had grown tired of all this and fired Huggins in 2005. A year later the controversial Huggins was given a reprieve by Kansas State University. Huggins had a successful season turning around the Wildcats and earning 20 wins and an NIT bid, to go along with what many had deemed the number one recruiting class in the country, headlined by superstar Michael Beasley. Huggins could not resist the temptation to take what he had called "his dream job" and left KSU after just one season to take of the head man seat at his alma mater. This rapid departure left KSU fans and administrators feeling a variety of emotions, from shocked, pissed, disappointed and angry. It's hard to feel sorry for anyone at KSU in regard to this matter for a couple of reasons. 1. This is guy who has the chance to go back to his alma mater and take his dream job 2. Probably more important for KSU fans and boosters to realize was they had already gone to bed with the devil, what in the hell were they expecting to happen? Huggins track record of wins has always been clouded by his low graduation rates and off the court shenanigans. It's not as if Bob Huggins was an angel prior to landing in the Lil Apple and each and every person associated with Kansas State knew exactly what they were getting in Bob Huggins.

So, there you have it in a nut shell. In a matter of two days, new CU head man Jeff Bzdelik went from having the least seniority in the Big 12 to being number 10. Strange how that all works out.

And lastly we come to the once proud University of Arkansas. Earlier this week the Razorbacks thought they had found their new coach in Creighton coach Dana Altman (ironically, a former KSU head coach) and introduced him to the media and booster in Fayetteville. Amongst the "Pig Sooeeee" shrieks, Altman looked noticeably uncomfortable as Arkansas AD Frank Broyles handed him a cap and t-shirt. Broyles, a long time Augusta National member wanted to get this thing wrapped up pronto go he could catch a plane over to Augusta and participate in the festivities of Masters Week. Little did Broyles know that Altman would have a change of heart and promptly resign and return to Creighton. Altman cited family reasons for his change of heart and said that Omaha felt like home to him and his family. (Seriously, Omaha? Ugh) So, needless to say, AD Broyles week of rubbing elbows with other 70 year old southerners at Augusta was rudely interrupted and he now has to find someone that want to come to Fayetteville. Good luck with that Frank.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

CU Lands Their Top Target

Can I get a hell yeah? The long drawn out CU Mens Basketball search is over. Finally.

After suffering through one of the worst seasons in years due to a lame (duck) coach and a boatload of freshmen, there's a very bright light shining down on Boulder and the Coors Events Center. The worst kept secret over the last five months in Colorado has finally come to fruition. Jeff Bzdelik, formerly of the Denver Nuggets and Air Force Academy has agreed to a 5 year contract to become the 17th mens basketball coach in CU history. The Buffs have found a gem.

Let me give a little back ground on my perspective. I was fortunate enough over the last 2 seasons to see roughly 15 AFA games that Jeff Bzdelik coached in person at Clune Arena in Colorado Springs. He won 50 games in the two season he was at AFA. That's right, 50 games at a service academy, unbelievable stuff. Bzdelik's teams are disciplined, run a specific offense (Novel idea isn't it Ricardo?) and are tough as nails on defense. This AFA team beat the likes of Texas Tech, Long Beach State, UNLV, Wake Forrest, Stanford and Colorado. And by beat (for the most part) I mean they absolutely kicked their asses. All this done with future soldiers, not players with future NBA aspirations.

The most common concern I've been hearing in the media and among CU supporters regarding this hire is "Can Bzdelik recruit?". I think it's a valid question. My answer is yes, he will be able to recruit. Bzdelik's lengthy NBA resume alone speaks for it self. High School kids all believe they are headed to the NBA and Bzdelik knows what it takes to get there. In his press conference this morning, Coach Buzz stated, quite emphatically, "I love recruiting. I really enjoy it."He's not going to have any problem convincing a kid to come to CU to play in the Big 12 and to live in Boulder for a few years.

The next most common thing concern seems to be "Is he using this as a stepping stone or is he here for the long haul?". To that I say, either is fine by me. If he's using it as a stepping stone (and last time I checked, the CU Mens Basketball job was not exactly UCLA) then that would mean he had success while in Boulder and left the program in better shape than when he got there. Bzdelik has stated numerous times that he loves the state of Colorado. Smart man he is. He has turned down numerous jobs out of the state and his hiring at CU mark his third consecutive job within the state of Colorado. He says he and his family love it here. So whether it's a stepping stone go back to the NBA and get that last year needed for his NBA pension or if he settles in and coaches CU for 15 years, the program is in good hands.

Georgetown proved that a modified Princeton offense can work with great athletes, and I expect the players to buy in to what Bzdelik is preaching and be in the post season next year. (Okay, so by post season I mean NIT, but still it's better than anything that's been happening in Boulder recently)

Oh, and it's pronounced Buzz-DEL-ick.

I'm Back......

It's good to be back, after a computer crash and losing all my log-in info I was finally able to gain access tot he blog again. There been a lot that's happened in the world of sports since then, especially on the Colorado Sports landscape. Melo and JR Smith are suspended for fighting, Allen Iverson became a Nugget, the Broncos missed the playoffs, the Rockies traded Jason Jennings, the Buffs just hired a new B-Ball coach and then there's the Av's and Nuggs trying to get into the playoffs.

It'll take me a bit to catch up, but this time the password and log-in info are saved (novel idea, I know) and I'll be hitting this thing hard.


Thursday, November 30, 2006

Carmelo Anthony is freaking AWESOME!!

What a pleasure it's been to witness the maturing of Carmelo Anthony. He may very well be the best scorer in the NBA right now, and he's starting to "get it". It refreshing because I think he can finally lose the "next Glen Robinson" moniker , and prove to the rest of the NBA fans what kind of player he can be. As it stands now, he's the second leading scorer in the NBA, averaging 31.5 points per game. He's been getting his teammates more involved this season averaging 4.3 dimes a game, which is 1.5 assist higher than he's had in any other season. One thing I would like to see Melo do a little more of is hit the glass a little harder, he's too strong to only get 5 boards per game. I have a feeling athe best is yet to come and us Nugget fans are going to be treated to years of exciting play from Melo.

PS. I'd like to take the time to thank Joe Dumars for drafting Darko Milicic ahead of Carmelo, if not for this gaffe, the Nuggets would have drafted Darko and be mired in the basement of NBA still. Mad props Joe!!!

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Jay Cutler era begins

So the next "Golden Boy" QB for the Denver Broncos is set to start his NFL career on National TV against a division leading NFC team at Invesco Field. Hope the kid likes bright lights. The deterioration of former starter, Jake Plummer's, play has accelerated the need to get the #11 pick, Jay Cutler, into the broncos line up. Head coach Mike Shanahan has benched other starters this year in search of a spark, but this is more like a lightening strike, rather than a spark. It remains to be seen what Cutler is capable of, but his potential was briefly seen during the preseason and it was good. Cutler has a rocket arm and because of that, he's not afraid to throw the ball into tight spaces. This is both good and bad, especially since he's not going to be seeing those vanilla defenses he did in the preseason. I expect plenty of mistakes from the rookie but I also plan to have my jaw drop from seeing a QB that's not noodle armed making throws for the predominantly orange and blue. My expectations for Jay Cutler are tempered, mainly because he's a rookie and has not seen a single snap in a live bullets NFL game yet. That being said, I'm also excited to see the "new toy" on display and see what he's really made of. Maybe he can jolt this team and wake them up from the funk they've been in. I'm not sure what has happened these last couple of weeks, but Jake Plummer was not the only reason the Broncos have lost two games in a row. The defense has been unable to stop the run, the offense has not been able to getting the running game going and the special teams has been special alright, in a short bus, special kind of way. If the Broncos can go 3-2 over the next 5 games, they should be a wild card team and maybe, just maybe, they can catch lightening in a bottle and make some noise in the playoffs.