Archive for January, 2008

Wait ‘Til Next Year

Thursday, January 31st, 2008

For the Uniwatchers: Next year’s Super Bowl logo.

Super Bowl 43 logo

I liked it at first. Now, the more I look at it, I can’t figure out what it’s supposed to be, or what it has to do with Tampa Bay or anything.

Sweet Sixteenth?

Thursday, January 31st, 2008

The news that the state of Pennsylvania is approving a funding package that should see a new soccer stadium (among other things) built in suburban Philadelphia means that Major League Soccer may get to its stated goal of 16 teams by 2010.

What if it looked like this at that point?

Atlantic Northern
DC United Chicago
New England Columbus
New York Kansas City
Philadelphia Toronto
 
Southern Pacific
Colorado Chivas USA
Dallas Los Angeles
Houston San Jose
Salt Lake Seattle

I don’t personally think MLS would go with four-team divisions (and you’ll always hear the single-table enthusiasts chime in – I wouldn’t expect they’d do that with 16 teams, but you never know). I figure they’ll go with two eight-team conferences (which might break down as above, but with the Atlantic and Northern in the East and the Southern and Pacific in the West – thank you, PZ).

Then if the top four teams in each conference make the playoffs (as has been the case through most of the league’s history), you’re not facing a situation where “too many teams make the playoffs.” Seems manageable.

St. Louis looks like it’s the odd city out at the moment. That’s unfortunate. But I’ve long felt that St. Louis’ reputation as a soccer hotbed had a lot more to do with the great players that have come out of there and the love of playing and coaching the game that its residents have than about people actually ponying up to go watch it played at the professional level.

EDIT: Don Garber’s statement: “Governor Rendell’s announcement today is another very positive development toward bringing Major League Soccer to the Philadelphia area. The Philadelphia market just took a big step forward and is now well positioned to receive an MLS expansion team. The opportunity to be part of a large-scale urban-renewal project along the historic Chester waterfront remains extremely appealing to us. We are eager to continue our conversations with the potential ownership group to finalize an agreement and we will provide more details shortly.”

Video Goodness

Thursday, January 31st, 2008

This one is fourteen different kinds of awesome.

This one‘s fewer different kinds, but still awesome.

From Iconic to Ironic

Wednesday, January 30th, 2008

Speaking of jerseys (and I have to thank Dan for the tip on this one), DC United’s new look, to be worn by some new players:

DC United new jerseys

The team that’s been Major League Soccer’s “most authentic” club over its first 12 years, the one that’s been the most subtle in its brand, the most understated (for the most part – until last year), first loses its iconic three stripes across the front of the shirt, then the league goes and changes the number and name font style on the back of the jerseys, and, yet, DC puts the word “TRADITION” right below the collar.

Stars and Pinstripes Forever

Wednesday, January 30th, 2008

Are they still pinstripes if they’re horizontal, or do they have to be vertical? And if they’re wide apart, are they still pinstripes?

Anyway, here’s the new US Men’s National Team jersey:

Pinstripe US soccer jersey

And here’s the first thing I thought of when I saw it:

Alain Sutter in the old Dallas Burn jersey

Look, USSF and Nike, seriously: quit screwing around with the uniform, okay? Pick a nice, classic, basic look and stick with it. I know you’re all gaga about all the cash we all dropped when we went to Germany in 2006, so we’re obviously fans. But quit coming out with new product we’re all supposed to buy every year lest we risk our reputation as true believers.

Gee, Mr. Peabody…

Tuesday, January 29th, 2008

Mr. PeabodyTime for a trip in the wayback machine, also known as www.paperofrecord.com, which lets you search old newspaper PDFs.

These baseball notes actually appeared in the October 2, 1976 issue of The Sporting News:

(more…)

I’d Like to Buy a Vowel

Tuesday, January 29th, 2008

Lots of consonants taken in today’s MISL College Draft.

They Are United. Or So They Say.

Tuesday, January 29th, 2008

United Football League logoI’ll admit – I’ve been skeptical of the United Football League (going so far as to say “you’ll never play a game,” which I guess I have to stand by).

I’ve seen many an alternative football league announced only to crash and burn well before kickoff in the 30+ years I’ve been following the game as a fan and media type. I was a huge fan of the USFL and have a soft spot in my heart for leagues that take on the status quo and inject a little life into the proceedings (not that I think they could ever realistically compete with the NFL). (more…)

After Further Review…

Tuesday, January 29th, 2008

Scumbag Jerramy Stevens of the BucsMaybe the worst person in the world plays in Tampa Bay, but it’s not Elijah Dukes of the Rays.

Maybe it’s Jerramy Stevens of the Buccaneers.

Just a vile, evil, bad guy.

And Bruce Allen gets a contract extension from the Bucs for moves like this, signing this complete waste of DNA and saying “I think Jerramy Stevens is a good young man.”

Of course you do, Bruce. It wasn’t your daughter he raped. Or your 92-year-old grandmother whose house he drove his truck into. Or your 17-year-old son whose face he stomped.

Is Bradshaw Overrated?

Monday, January 28th, 2008

Terry BradshawI was talking recently with a friend of mine (just for sake of argument, let’s call him, oh, Dan) about quarterbacks. We seem to be hearing a lot about quarterbacks lately, especially this week, what with Tom Brady of the Patriots poised to become one of the all-time greats (unless you believe total idiots like Bill Plaschke or Nick Canepa).

Somehow we got around to the guy you see above, Terry Bradshaw. Now, I wasn’t a huge Steelers fan, but they were the dominant team when I started following pro football in the mid-to-late 1970s (and I do have a Steelers #12 throwback jersey), and I respect that.

Dan and a lot of other folks don’t seem to respect ol’ TB, though. His name comes up a lot when you discuss the greatest quarterbacks and it seems like his name gets dismissed a lot (hey, how many Super Bowls does a guy have to win around here, anyway?) pretty quickly. This, despite the fact he was a first-ballot Hall of Famer, something only 13 other quarterbacks* can say. (more…)