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The tournament is just a day away and even though SMU couldn’t sneak in, there should still be plenty of activity around the area as DFW gets ready to host the Final Four at Jerry World in a few weeks.
Come join the DSR Bracket Challenge group in ESPN Tournament Challenge and compete to see if your bracket beats the rest of the DSR readers!
Join the Group
The Final Four
The Final Four is in “North Texas” at ATT Stadium in Arlington this year so Im looking forward to all the events that should be happening around the Metroplex over the next few weeks to get ready for the big show in Jerry World.
Frogs O War
You can join the Frogs O War as well.
The NCAA College Basketball Bracket Contest http://t.co/rtLfE56pb3
— Jamie Plunkett (@TheDSportsRant) March 17, 2014
(Photo Credit: USATSI)
College Football got underway with a bang in Week 1, and now it’s time for the first Zone Read Podcast Player of the Week Awards.
Offensive Player of the Week: Jameis Winston, QB, Florida State
Winston, a redshirt freshman, helped Florida State annihilate Pitt on Monday night, completing 25 of 27 passes for 353 yards and four touchdowns. Yes, he only threw two imcomplete passes all night.
Winston also ran for 42 yards and a touchdown.
Here are some highlights from his game against Pitt.
Defensive Player of the Week: Collin Ellis, LB, Northwestern
Ellis had not one, but two interceptions on Saturday against Cal, and he returned not one, but two for touchdowns. He also recorded four tackles, including one for a loss.
Here’s video of both his pick 6’s.
Special Teams Player of the Week: B.J. Catalon, RB, TCU
TCU lost to LSU to start the season, but it wasn’t for lack of effort on the part of B.J. Catalon. Catalon totaled 159 yards on four returns, including this one for 100 and a touchdown (he also rushed for 52 yards and TD in the game).
Dirk has been open about his feelings on flopping, and the NBA’s approach to combating it.
But that doesn’t mean he isn’t willing to do a little acting of his own. Here’s a video of Dirk making the most magical, yet terrible, flop of all time in a charity soccer match in Wurzburg, Germany.
I’ve also created a gif of this, for your sharing enjoyment.
Go, share this with the world.
(Photo Credit: Jeff Gross / Getty Images)
I know what you’re thinking: Jamie, why the heck are you writing about two guys we absolutely hate around here?
Because something just dawned on me. Sports redemption is happening right in front of our faces. We’re getting our good karma for suffering through a terrible season of give-up from one of the worst players to ever don a Mavericks jersey.
Josh Hamilton’s 2013 season with the L.A. Angels of Anaheim is a reincarnation of Lamar Odom’s 2012 season with the Dallas Mavericks. Both seasons are (or were) record breaking in a negative way for each player.
In 2012 (50 games played), Odom set career lows for the following:
- Minutes per game (20.5)
- Field goal percentage (35.2%)
- Free throw percentage (59.2%)
- Rebounds per game (4.2)
- Assists per game (1.7)
- Points per game (6.6)
Odom has since re-set career lows in points/game (4), free throw shooting percentage (47.6) and minutes per game (19.7) this past season.
In 2013 (70 games played), Josh Hamilton is on pace to set career lows in:
- batting average (currently: .210/on pace for: .210/career average .296)
- on base percentage (.266/.266/.355)
- slugging percentage (.384/.384/.535)
- OPS (.650/.650/.890)
- strikeouts* (75/169/99.3)
*strikeouts would, obviously, be a new career-high, which is a low, obviously.
There are also a few categories where he’s on pace to set career lows in seasons where he has played at least 120 games (which excludes 2007 and 2009, during which he played 90 and 89 games, respectively):
- hits (currently: 57/on pace for: 128)
- home runs (10/23)
- RBI (24/54)
- doubles (13/29)
Josh Hamilton, by his own account, is trying. He’s just not getting anywhere. Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that he swings on the same plane regardless of where the ball is going. He’s been pretty snippy with the media as of late, which means that he’s sincerely frustrated with the way he’s playing.
SIDENOTE: For those of you that think he’s faking it and really doesn’t care, I disagree. He’s not the kind of guy to fake emotion. He never has been. In fact, I don’t think he has the mental fortitude to keep up a ruse like that for very long.
In the case of Lamar Odom, he was so full of give up that Mark Cuban publicly ripped him in the middle of a game in Memphis (a game which I happened to attend, oddly enough). He was benched for the second half of that game against the Grizzlies, and never saw the court again. In fact, he was so pathetic that Cuban basically cut ties with him all-together, but kept him on the payroll so he couldn’t bolt elsewhere (specifically, back to the Lakers).
In every post-game interview, even in his press conference right after his signing, he seemed morose. Like he didn’t want to be here. Odom, like Hamilton, also lacked mental fortitude, but for a different reason. He couldn’t even bring himself to try for the guy that was writing his checks. I even wrote about it midway through that season, imploring people to stop booing Odom because he couldn’t handle it mentally.
However, one thing I know is true. I enjoy watching Hamilton struggle as much as I despised Odom’s lack of effort. It makes me feel vindicated, in some weird, twisted way. Like my suffering through Odom wasn’t for naught. My reward is Josh Hamilton helping sink the Angels.
(Photo Credit: 2005 GETTY FILE PHOTO)
(Photo Credit: Harry How/Getty Images)
Welcome to the 2013 Masters Tournament Pick ‘Em Challenge!
Yes, it’s that time again. Time to see who can channel their inner Nostradamus and pick the best combination of golfers to be crowned 2013 Masters Pick ‘Em Challenge Champion. For those of you that are new, here’s how you play:
1. Fill out the form below to submit your picks.
2. 3 of the 5 players you select must make the cut to make your team score valid.
3. The total cumulative score of the lowest 3 players to make the cut will determine your final score.
4. The lowest final score will determine the winner.
5. A maximum of 1 entry per person may be entered.
7. All entries must be made by Wed, April 10 at midnight.
Once the tournament starts we’ll post a live leaderboard so you can track how you’re doing (Let’s all give Chris Reed a big thank you for that). To help out with making your picks, we’ve posted all of the player odds for the 2013 Masters.
|BO VAN PELT||80/1|
|TED POTTER, JR||500/1|
|JOSE MARIA OLAZABAL||500/1|
|FIELD (All others not listed above)||20/1|
(2013 Masters odds provided by VegasInsider.com)
It’s that time of year. Join the DSR bracket challenge and let’s see whose stay’s together the longest. Or at least outside the first round.
Feel free to share with anyone who wants to play!
Based on this video:
I created this GIF:
You’re welcome, America.
Just a few quick thoughts about both games. Both were evened up last night, which basically relegates these series to a three game winner takes all bout in Washington and New York. Lot of bats, lot of excitement, lots of Ichiro doing that ninja thing. Fortunately, though, we avoided the infield fly rule.
St. Louis 12, Washington 4
First – the Cardinals were not messing around last night. All business. From the second inning, when manager Mike Matheny pinch hit for a laboring Jaime Garcia, the Redbirds showed that they were taking game two. Add a couple innings of three run relief by the St. Louis bullpen, a spectacular catch by Jon Jay, “the Federal,” and Carlos Beltran hitting like it was 2004, and the Cardinals devised a near unbeatable equation. The middle of the Cardinals lineup still wasn’t spectacular, as leadoff hitter Jon Jay and number two man Beltran both accounted for three RBIS each, and the 3-4-5 spot only accounted for 1 on five hits. Cardinals fans would certainly like to see Matt Holliday swing the bat. This biggest Cardinal takeaway is Trevor Rosenthal, the reliever who came in to finish the game. He struck out three and allowed one hit, and all three strikeout pitches were 100 mph. He hit 101 mph on one pitch, too. The Nationals weren’t quite in shambles yesterday. Their bats were hot, as four runs in a postseason game isn’t ever “bad.” But, they left 18 on base and struck out 11 times, and Zimmerman decided that slowpitch softball was the name of his game yesterday. Game three is at one o’clock on Wednesday back in Washington.
Baltimore 3, New York 2
As far as the Yankees-Orioles, I’ve gotta think they’re going to go five games. The Orioles are scrappy, plain and simple, and I think they’re going to give the Yanks all they want and then some. I spoke with a friend on twitter about how amazing it is that Chris Davis has become a competent ballplayer. (Seriously, go look at his career arc. It’s astounding.) Another fun part of last night was Pettitte showing his old man strength. That’s two Yankees starters in two games that have gone into the ninth inning. It’s amazing, really, to see guys of such high quality just strap it on and take over. AP just needed some more run support. The Yankees played like a nerdy college freshman last night, leaving 20 on base. (Ok, so they played like me last night, whatever, just laugh at the “Can’t Close” joke and move on). They are going to have to take Baltimore more seriously. If it weren’t for two gaffes on the basepath (1 where JJ Hardy got deked by A-Rod so convincingly he didn’t run home on a groundball to the outfield and 1 where Ichiro basically did a cartwheel over an unprepared Matt Wieters to score a run), the O’s easily could have been up 4-1 instead of 3-2. The Yankees are going to have to strap it on in New York come Wednesday and not give this Baltimore team any hope if they want to advance. Game three is at 6:30 on Wednesday.
That’s it for this morning. Don’t forget – @TheDSportsRant and @spfleming on twitter for real time reactions and commercial analysis.