Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Reflections on Calling, Career and Baseball

I heard this story last week and I thought it was interesting. Grant Desme, a prospect for the Oakland A's, decided to quit baseball and follow after a calling to join the priesthood. It was first mentioned on and then this week Desme was interviewed with Dan Patrick. It was a really interesting interview and I would recommend listening to it if you get the chance. Here's a link to the interview.

One point that was brought up in the interview was a comparison between Tim Tebow and Grant Desme. Tebow is going to go to the NFL and use the platform as a professional athlete to share his faith while Desme is going into the priesthood to share his faith. I think it's hard to say that Desme is wrong for quitting baseball while he's still a good prospect (he was the Fall League MVP) and has an opportunity to make the big leagues. He feels lead by God to pursue ministry and that is something that we all must individually deal with.

I liked one quote that Desme said to Patrick. He said this "I want to throw everything I have into giving everything I have for God." That's something that I'd hope to do in my life.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Championship Weekend Picks

Those who watched yesterday's video post know my picks, here's the picks in writing:

NY Jets 20 Indianapolis 14
New Orleans 45 Minnesota 38

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Divisional Round Picks

Busy week with classes, so here's the quick and dirty on the playoff picks for this round:

New Orleans 34 Arizona 31
Indianapolis 27 Baltimore 10
Minnesota 24 Dallas 21
New York 28 San Diego 24

Friday, January 8, 2010

Wild Card Weekend Predictions

Well the predictions for 2010 are off and running. Yesterday didn't do so well with the BCS National Championship game. Of course didn't expect McCoy to get hurt on Texas' second series. Oh well, onto the pros. It's Wild Card Weekend and it's the first year since 2004 that a team I root for is not in the playoffs. Here's the breakdown for this weekend's action.

On Saturday, you have Jets/Bengals and Cowboys/Eagles. Both are rematches from Week 17. In Jets/Bengals, got to go with momentum. Jets have it Bengals don't...

Jets 24 Bengals 17

With the Cowboys/Eagles, it's hard to win three times against an opponent. Don't think Cowboys can do it.

Eagles 30 Cowboys 24

On Sunday, you have Packers/Cardinals and Ravens/Patriots, also rematches from the regular season. With Packers/Cards, you have the toughest game to pick. Last year I went with the road team, this year going with the home team in a close one

Cardinals 27 Packers 24

With Ravens/Patriots, simply put. I don't like Ravens and that makes this an easy pick.

Patriots 35 Ravens 17

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Prediction on the BCS National Championship Game

Tonight is the BCS National Championship Game. Not to be confused with the "other" BCS game which included two undefeated teams which I dubbed the "other National Championship game" between TCU and Boise State which was played on Monday. This one is between #1 Alabama and #2 Texas.

Anyone that knows me knows that I can't stand the BCS system and that there should be a playoff. But be that as it may, this is what we're stuck with for now.

In this game, we've got two teams which personally I either don't care about or don't like. Which means on the surface, I don't have a real rooting interest in this game. I'm not going to root for Alabama, simply because I don't like Bama. They're a rival to Tennessee. I don't care if they're in the same conference. They're a rival. Same goes for Florida. There's no scenerio where I would root for Florida. Any other SEC team I'm fine with but not those two.

On the other hand, I don't really care about Texas either. At one time, I didn't like Texas because of how they treated their one time starting QB Major Applewhite by benching him for Chris Simms but time has smoothed it out to where now I'm indifferent to them.

So in predicting this game I went with both sides, both sides being stats and gut feeling. The stats come down to this. The SEC is 5-0 in BCS National Championship games while the Big 12 is 2-4 in BCS National Championship games. Those lend themselves to Alabama. However, Alabama is winless in BCS games (0-2) including losing last year to Utah. Texas however is undefeated in BCS games (3-0) including winning the National Championsip game back in 2006. Also, the #2 team has won the last 4 matchups and 6 out of the last 7.

So there's the stats, here's the gut feeling. When I first heard the matchup, I immediately thought about the 2006 Rose Bowl game. There are several similarities between this year's game and that one. Both are being played in Pasadena. Both feature Texas as an underdog against a team that everyone expects to win the game. Both feature the opposing QB who has been successful (Matt Leinart: Heisman winner, Greg McElroy undefeated). Both feature a highly touted running back with the opposing team (Reggie Bush/Mark Ingram).

After weighing the stats and my gut feeling, I came to this conclusion. It'll be a hard fought game but in the end I think Texas gets the win. 41-38 Longhorns. In the words of Yogi Berra "It's deja vu all over again..."

Friday, January 1, 2010

Reflections on the Winter Classic 2010

It's New Year's Day and I got to enjoy what has become a tradition for me. That tradition is watching the Winter Classic on TV. For those that don't know, the Winter Classice is a regular season NHL Hockey game that is put on outside. It was started in 2008 as a way to draw attention to the league. The first one was indeed a classic as it was the Pittsburgh Penguins and Buffalo Sabres playing in Buffalo. It snowed during the game and the game ended in a shootout with the Penguins winning. Last year, the Chicago Blackhawks played the Detroit Red Wings in Chicago at Wrigley Field. The Red Wings won the game played on that historic field.

This year it was the Boston Bruins and the Philadelphia Flyers and the game was at historic Fenway Park in Boston. The game was a classic game between these two rivals. There was a fight, lots of checking into the boards and even some goals. The game ended in overtime with Boston getting the win 2-1.

When they were thinking of implementing this back in '08, there was a lot of skepticism. New Year's Day was college football. Would hockey make a dent? I think the last three years have shown that it has. With less bowl games on New Year's Day along with really good matchups at historic venues, the Winter Classic has been a success. It is something that I look forward to now each year. I would not be surprised if next year it's in New York with the Rangers as the home team and they're playing at Yankee Stadium. I'll go with that as a prediction, my first of the year. We'll see next New Year's if it holds true.