Monthly Archives: December, 2011

The Dubsism Top Fifteen Sports Stories of 2011

Being that we are at the end of what has proven to be a tumultuous twelve months, why not take a look back at the biggest sports stories of such a year? After all, I’m pretty sure nobody else does these sort of retrospectives…

15) The Establishment of Two All-Time Winningest College Coaches: Paterno and Krzyzewski

Will there again ever be a year in which we see the crowning of two all-time winningest coaches? We may not see either of those records (Paterno, 409 wins; Krzyzewski, 903 and counting) fall in the next half-century, let alone having them both occur in the same year.

14) Kevin Love’s Double-Double Streak

For nearly 30 years, Moses Malone’s record stood at 51 consecutive games, until Kevin Love scored 16 points and grabbed 21 rebounds against the Indiana Pacers for his 52nd straight double-double. Love’s streak ended at 53 three days later at the hands of the Golden State Warriors.

13) Two More Yankees Make The Record Books

Mariano Rivera and Derek Jeter…Get ready for two more monuments behind the center field fence in Yankee Stadium.  Rivera notched his  record-setting 602nd career save, eclipsing Trevor Hoffman’s previous mark. And in the same season,  Yank captain Derek Jeter smoked a long ball to reach the 3,000-hit milestone, becoming only the the 28th member of the exclusive club and the first 3K Yankee.

12) The End of The Peyton Manning Era

The Colts spent two decades as an NFL afterthought before the arrival of the wunderkind Manning in 1998, and now neck surgery may spell the end of the Manning era in Indianapolis. Manning’s surgically rebuilt neck, his back-loaded contract, and the Colts prime real-estate in the upcoming NFL Draft form a perfect storm scenario in which if Manning does ever take an NFL snap again, it may be in a uniform not of Colt blue.

11) The Improbable Run to the Championship

When is the next time you will see such a harmonic convergence of “underdog” champions?

  • NFL: The Green Bay Packers make the playoffs as the bottom 6th Seed.
  • MLB: The St. Louis Cardinals literally make the playoffs as a wild-card on the last night of the season, then they win what may be the greatest baseball game in a generation, Game 6 of the World Series.
  • NHL: Granted, The Boston Bruins were a #3 seed in the East, which isn’t a prohibitive underdog, but nobody gave them a chance in the Stanley Cup Finals against the President’s Trophy winning Vancouver Canucks
  • NBA: Like the Bruins, the Dallas Mavericks entered the playoff tournament as #3 seed, but it was their complete domination of the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers which set the tone for the next two series, both of which saw Dallas facing teams which seemingly should easily over-match them in terms of talent on the floor. That was until Dirk Nowitzki decided to become unstoppable.
  • NCAA Men’s Basketball: Again, the #3 seed proved magical, as the Connecticut Huskies rode that to the top of the field of 64. The fact they played their way to that seed was only slightly short of a miracle, considering they entered their conference tournament as a #9 and had to play AND win four games in four days to ensure getting into the NCAA tournament. Honestly, the ten-game streak in the Big East and NCAA tournaments pulled off by the Huskies may be one of the great playoff runs of all time.
  • NCAA Men’s Ice Hockey: Another #3 seed…are you sensing a theme here? The University of Minnesota-Duluth (which is really the UCLA of hockey) had an improbable run to the championship of the Frozen Four.
  • NCAA Women’s Basketball: I know that it is hard to call a #2 seed an underdog, but let’s not forget the womens’ basketball world was dominated by a single goliath at Baylor which Texas A&M  had to slay, but there was the ever-present team dragons in Tennessee, Stanford, and Connecticut.

10) The NBA Lockout

In what may prove to be a Quixotic exercise in abject futility, the NBA owners locked out the  players on July 1st  for reasons I still really can’t understand given what has happened since the lockout ended.  Star players getting big money has been the rule in professional sports for decades; Babe Ruth was the first jock to pocket more than the President of the United States. But when the Samuel Dalemberts of the world world are getting $13 million a year in a league that can’t pull in big-time national TV money, the problem is much larger than a simple collective bargaining agreement.

9) The Death of the Man Who Made the NFL What It Is Today

There’s a certain amount of irony in the fact the world lost Al Davis and North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Il in the same year.  Much like the regime of Kim Il-Sung and his son Kim Jong-Il, the end of the Al Davis Era marks both the end of an era that once made the Raiders a serious factor in the world of the NFL, but now leaves them as an isolated dictatorship viewed as a pariah in contemporary circles.

Kim Il-Sung shaped at least a half-century of world history when he ordered the North Korean army into South Korea in 1950, starting a war that is still technically unresolved to this day. Al Davis forever changed the face of the NFL when he sued the league for the right to move his franchise as he pleased.

Much like Kim Il-Sung left his eternal mark on North Korea beyond the war, the legendary Raiders owner had six decades’ worth of unique impact on pro football. I would be lying if I said that I never criticized Davis.  Just a few months ago, I included him on my list of the 15 Worst Owners in Sports.  However, as I said in that piece, that criticism was reserved for the Al Davis of the past 20 years or so.

For those of you under 30, you may not believe there was a time when Al Davis wasn’t a batshit crazy Cryptkeeper look-alike and the Raiders were not the laughing stock of the NFL. In an 18-year span during the 70′s and 80′s, the Raiders won 13 division championships, made 15 playoff appearances, and took home three Lombardi trophies. This is the era when the Raiders were the winningest team in all of professional sports, and love him or hate him, Davis was a respected and visionary leader who helped build the AFL into a league so successful the NFL couldn’t beat it so they joined with it.

That paragraph only scratches the surface as to what Al Davis meant to the world of professional football.  Davis literally climbed the football ladder, going from college assistant coach to an NFL assistant coach, to head coach,  to owner to AFL commissioner, to Super Bowl champion,  and ultimately to the Hall of Fame.

Perhaps his single greatest honor is having made a record nine presentations of inductees to the Pro Football Hall of Fame.  Al Davis made presentation speeches for  Lance Alworth, Jim Otto, George Blanda, Willie Brown, Gene Upshaw, Fred Biletnikoff, Art Shell, Ted Hendricks, and John Madden. Davis himself was enshrined in Canton in 1992.

Davis changed the game of football through sheer personality; a personality which was a collection of contradictions. At once, he was was loyal and rebellious;  cantankerous and vindictive,  yet sentimental.  Yet through all that, Davis’ name must be included amongst the founding fathers of the NFL; a name that must be mentioned with same reverence in NFL circles as that of George Halas.

His contributions to the league as a whole notwithstanding, there the matter of his success with the Raiders. His trademark slogans weren’t just some words on a banner, it was a philosophy that propelled the three-time World Champion Raiders to the very top of the professional sports world. In the 48 year marriage between Davis and the Raiders, they had 28 winning seasons, including 16 in a row from 1965 through the 1980 World Championship season.

Davis died earlier this year died at age 82 and it’s hard to dispute the Hall of Famer’s place among the most influential of the sport’s history-makers. Davis was controversial. He was a contrarian. But he was also a gift to the game.

8 ) The Ever-Deepening Cesspool That Is The NCAA

This is only layer one of what is wrong with the NCAA. The truly disgusting stuff comes later down this list. This entry is all about the corruption and the hypocrisy of the organization which is supposed to keep these factors out of college sports.

It all starts back in January when the NCAA first found violations at Ohio State, but let the players who committed the violations play in their bowl game.  The theme here is the NCAA clearly values money over integrity. Keep this in mind as you read.

In August, the Miami situation broke,  when it was reported that Nevin Shapiro was pumping thousands of dollars in illegal benefits to past and present Hurricanes players over the past decade.  The tale told by Shapiro from his prison cell (he’s currently parking his ass in a federal cell for his role in a $930 million Ponzi scheme) includes prostitutes, cars, cash,  and paid vacations, much of which he alleges were known of by Miami staff and coaches.  Shaprio dimed out the names of  73 current and former players.

University of Miami president Donna Shalala being presented a check by Nevin Shapiro.

Go back to the Ohio State situation. At first, this was just about tattoos. Then it mushroomed into costing head football coach Jim Tressel and starting quarterback Terrelle Pryor their jobs. In this case, it wasn’t so much the crime, but it was the cover-up which killed everybody. But the fact the NCAA dicked around for months only underscores the fact they are not really than interested in enforcement.

Then there’s the completely laughable finding that Auburn “committed no infractions” in the Cam Newton affair when there were admissions about cash payments totaling $180,000.

The best part is this isn’t just teams who are mired in unethical activity. The Fiesta Bowl committee was exposed in a 276-page report which detailed allegations of Fiesta Bowl employees being reimbursed for donations to state and local politicians (which happens to be a felony), $1,241 spent at a Phoenix strip club was illegally charged to an expense account, and the misappropriation of $33,188 bill for Fiesta Bowl’s president and CEO Junker’s 50th birthday party.  Junker has since been fired, but more stories like this will emerge until the swamp that is the NCAA is drained.

7) The Conviction of Barry Bonds

Another story indicative of what a depressing year in sports this really has been. Again, instead of talking about accomplishments on the field, we are dealing with matters decided in a courtroom.

In April, Bonds became the first player from a “major” sport to be convicted for an issue stemming from the latest round of scandal about performance-enhancing drugs. While he was acquitted of the more serious charges, just this past Friday U.S. District Judge Susan Illston issued a 20-page order refusing to overturn the obstruction of justice conviction handed down by the the jury in her courtroom  nearly eight months ago.

6) The Continuing Tectonic Shift in College football

Texas A&M is headed to the SEC. So is Missouri.  Syracuse and Pittsburgh are bolting from the Big East to join the ACC. West Virginia is trying to ditch the Big East for the supposedly greener pastures of the Big 12; the same greener pastures TCU left the Big East at the altar for.  In return, the Big East extended invitations to at least six teams, and the madness isn’t over yet.

5) The Phenomenon Known as Tim Tebow

I’ve been watching football for nearly 40 years, and I’ve never…repeat NEVER…seen anything like the Tim Tebow story. He’s either loved or hated; he’s either the future of the Denver Broncos or an impostor. Everybody has a strong opinion, and everybody is convinced they are right.

Frankly, I have no idea what to make of the guy, so I’m going to stick with the facts.

  • Whether or not the Broncos complete this miraculous run to the playoffs, there is no denying this team was on life-support when they handed Tebow the keys, and that team responded to him.
  • The Tebow story is one of the few uplifting stories in a year in sports filled with so many negatives.
  • Like it or not, Tebow is the biggest star in the NFL right now. Doubt that? Tell me another NFL player that had an hour-long special dedicated to him exclusively.

4) The Night of the Dueling Collapses

In the last story, I said I have been watching football for nearly 40 years. I can say the same for baseball, and again, I can say I never saw anything like the last night of the regular season.  In what was inarguably the wildest night in baseball I’ve ever seen, the Red Sox and the Rays,  and the Braves and the Cardinals entered the last game competing for the American League and National League wild-card berths respectively.

This set the stage for six hours of baseball that will be talked about for at least as many decades.

In the National League, the Braves blew a ninth inning lead, eventually losing in the 13th inning 4-3 to the Phillies.  This loss opened the door for the Cardinals to capture the wild card by cruising past the Astros 8-0 to complete their amazing late season run; one that found them trailing Atlanta by 10.5 games on August 25th but prevaiiling in the end by winning 23 of their final 31 games.

Believe it or not, the collapse in the American League was even more epic.  The Boston Red Sox  led Tampa Bay Rays by nine games on September 4th, which seemed to be an insurmountable lead. It wasn’t, as the Sox found themselves in need of a win on the last night of the season to keep their playoff hopes alive. The stars seems to be aligning Boston’s way; they seemed on the verge of staving off a historic choke-job, taking an early 3-2 lead over the Orioles while the Rays fell behind the Yankees 7-0.  But then somebody messed with the lenses of the Sox telescope; Boston closer Jonathan Papelbon surrendered consecutive hits to Chris Davis, Nolan Reimold, and Robert Andino to earn a season-ending 4-3 loss.  Meanwhile, the Rays regrouped and mounted a comeback on the shoulders of a pair of dramatic homers from Evan Longoria, including a 12th-inning walkoff game winner.

3) The Fiasco of the Los Angeles Dodgers

We may never know how sordid the details of Frank McCourt’s mismanagement of the Los Angeles Dodgers really are; what we do know is that after the Dodgers began showing signs of financial trouble in 2010, Commissioner Bud Selig made the decision to give the league control over the club’s day-to-day operations starting in April 2011.

Since then, we’ve been treated to McCourt attempting to overturn Selig’s take-over via the courts, then threatening to engage in more legal maneuvering over a proposed television deal with Fox Sports was rejected by Selig. Then since the Dodgers struggled to meet payroll deadlines, the club filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, all during which McCourt was embroiled in what may have been the nastiest divorce in the history of the state of California.

Thankfully, Major League Baseball and McCourt reached an agreement in October under which he will sell the team and the media rights by April 30, 2012.

2) The NFL Lockout

Really, all this lockout proved is that the NFL owners and players really don’t understand the problems they have. They think this new collective bargaining agreement solves all the acrimony we all lived through, but that’s an illusion made of money. Realistically, the NFL and the NBA share some common problems, namely that they have franchises in places they shouldn’t, and those franchises are draining the league’s resources. The difference is the NFL is the country’s most popular sports league, it is literally floating on money, so it can pave over it’s issues with revenue-sharing. When the NFL finally hits the point where it has priced itself out of the market (wait until you see what the new TV deal is going to do to your cable bill), all of a sudden the illusion made of money will disappear. Mark my words, the next NFL lockout (and there will be one) will look and sound just like the NBA lockout we just lived through.

1) The Penn State and Syracuse Sex Abuse Scandals

This is the one story here that transcends sports. We have all heard the allegations, we have all read ad nauseum about all the sickening details; there’s really no need to rehash them here. What matters most is that these stories should serve as a wake-up call to all of us. We all must take a stand in stopping this sort of abuse of our children, and we must do it now. There is no excuse for any other course of action.

To that end, this should serve as the moment of truth for the NCAA. It’s time to find out how many more Jerry Sanduskys and Bernie Fines there are out there, and it’s time to ensure they are stopped. If the NCAA can’t do that, then the NCAA needs to be dismantled.

Fourteen Curious All-Time Basketball Teams For Your Consideration

Everybody loves to put together lists of useless stuff, and certainly we here at Dubsism are no exception. This collection sprung from some holiday conversation revolving around which schools could really put together the best all-time team.  See, the catalyst for all of this is there are Kansas fans in this group, and we all know the Dubsism position on Jayhawk basketball.

For comparative purposes, this led to a listing of possible “All-Time” teams from the schools which have won 3 or more NCAA championships. This gave us an odd number, so we added the team with the most wins which was not on that list (Syracuse). Then to make it really interesting, we added teams comprised of some miscellaneous categories.

Peruse the list and let us know what you think.  Just remember, this is a true “All-Time” list, not the kind that ESPN does which only means the last 25 years or so.  Many of you born after 1985 may very well have never heard of some of these players. If you find yourself in that position, do yourself a favor and do some research. After all, somebody has to teach the children about George Mikan.

George Mikan - The Blake Griffin of the 1950's



  • C – Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
  • F – Kiki Vandeweghe
  • F – Jamaal Wilkes
  • G – Reggie Miller
  • G –  Gail Goodrich


  • Bill Walton
  • Baron Davis
  • Marques Johnson


  • John Wooden

2) Kentucky


  • C – Sam Bowie
  • C/F – Dan Issel
  • F – Antoine Walker
  • F/G – Cliff Hagan
  • G – Rex Chapman


  • Jamal Mashburn
  • Rajon Rondo
  • Tayshaun Prince


  • Adolph Rupp

3) Indiana


  • C – Walt Bellamy
  • F – George McGinnis
  • F – Calbert Cheaney
  • G – Isaiah Thomas
  • G – Dick Van Arsdale


  • Tom Van Arsdale
  • Mike Woodson
  • Kent Benson


  • Bobby Knight

4) North Carolina


  • C/F – Bob McAdoo
  • F- James Worthy
  • F/G – Vince Carter
  • G – Michael Jordan
  • G – Walter Davis


  • Jerry Stackhouse
  • Billy Cunningham
  • Rasheed Wallace


  • Dean Smith

5) Duke


  • C – Mike Gminski
  • F – Christian Laettner
  • F – Elton Brand
  • G – Grant Hill
  • G – Jeff Mullins


  • Corey Maggette
  • Jack Marin
  • Carlos Boozer


  • Mike Kryzewzki
6) Connecticut


  • C/F – Emeka Okafor
  • F – Clifford Robinson
  • F – Caron Butler
  • F/G – Richard Hamilton
  • G – Ray Allen


  • Donyell Marshall
  • Caron Butler
  • Rudy Gay


  • Jim Calhoun

7) Kansas


  • C- Wilt Chamberlain
  • F- Clyde Lovelette
  • F- Danny Manning
  • F/G – Paul Pierce
  • G – Jo Jo White


  • Dave Robisch
  • Kirk Hinrich
  • Bill Bridges


  • Phog Allen

8 ) Syracuse


  • C- Rony Seikaly
  • F- Carmelo Anthony
  • F – Derrick Coleman
  • G – Dave Bing
  • G – Sherman Douglas


  • Danny Schayes
  • Billy Owens
  • Hakim Warrick


  • Jim Boeheim

9) The “All Never Went To College” Team


  • C – Moses Malone
  • F – Kevin Garnett
  • F – LeBron James
  • G – Kobe Bryant
  • G – Monta Ellis


  • Darryl Dawkins
  • Tyson Chandler
  • A’mare Stoudamire


  • Lawrence Frank (who never played high school, college, or pro basketball)

10) The “All Small School” Team


  • C – Bill Russell (San Francisco)
  • F – Karl Malone (Louisiana Tech)
  • F – Larry Bird (Indiana State)
  • G – John Stockton (Gonzaga)
  • G – Bob Cousy (Holy Cross)


  • David Robinson (Navy)
  • George Mikan (DePaul)
  • Walt Frazier (Southern Illinois)


From North Dakota to New York...Pure Zen.

  • Phil Jackson (University of North Dakota)

11) The “All Europe” Team 


  • C – Arvydas Sabonis
  • C/F – Vlade Divac
  • F – Dirk Nowitzki
  • G – Peja Stojakavic
  • G – Drazen Petrovic


  • Andrei Kirilenko
  • Pau Gasol
  • Toni Kukoc


  • Borislav Stankovic

12) The All “Non-North America or Europe” Team


  • C – Yao Ming
  • C/F – Hakeem Alajuwon
  • F – Andrew Bogut
  • F – Serge Ibaka
  • G – Manu Ginobili


  • Dikembe Mutombo
  • Manute Bol
  • Anderson Varejao


  • Togo Renan Soares

 13) The “All Didn’t Make Any Other Lists” Team


  • C – Patrick Ewing
  • F- Julius Erving
  • F – Charles Barkley
  • G – Pete Maravich
  • G – Reggie Miller


  • George Gervin
  • Dominique Wilkins
  • Nate Thurmond


  • Lenny Wilkens

14) The “Overall #1 Draft Picks” Team


  • C  –  Shaquille O’Neal
  • C/F  – Tim Duncan
  • F  –  Chris Webber
  • G –  Oscar Robertson
  • G – Magic Johnson


  • Elgin Baylor
  • Bob Lanier
  • Allen Iverson


  • Doug Collins

We only included three bench players so that we would have plenty of room to add guys which you are sure to point out that we overlooked. Hell, if you feel so inclined, add a team all your own.

The Dubsism 2011-2012 College Football Bowl Recap: Did My Wife In Fact Know More Than I Do? The First Week’s Results

EDITOR’S NOTE: The original predictions that were made here back in August were based on an assumption the NCAA will would rule Ohio State, Miami (FL), and Auburn ineligible for post-season competition. These picks are noted, despite the fact that never happened; only Miami (FL) took itself out of bowl consideration. That’s not an excuse for my atrocious prognostication, but it’s what I’ve got.

As previously mentioned, since my wife gets to listen to most of these rants before they ever hit the interwebz, she thinks she actually knows more than me when it comes to college football. Of course, this meant a bowl-picking challenge…one that she is in fact winning at the time.


Here’s the gory details.

The Totals:

  • Dubsism: 6 out of 7 games this week (33 total)
  • Mrs. Dubsism: 7 out of 7 games this week (33 total)

MAACO Las Vegas Bowl:

  • Thursday, December 22nd; Las Vegas, Nevada; Sam Boyd Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: MWC #1 vs. Pac-12 #5 – TCU (#2 MWC) vs. Arizona (#6 Pac-12)
  • Payout: $1,100,000
  • Actual Matchup: Boise State (MWC #1) vs. Arizona State (Pac-12 #6)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Boise State
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Boise State
  • The Actual Outcome: Boise State 56, Arizona State 24

Hawaii Bowl:

  • Saturday, December 24th; Honolulu, Hawaii; Aloha Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: At-Large  vs. WAC #3 or Hawaii – UCLA (#9 Pac-12) vs. Hawaii (#2 WAC) 
  • Payout: $750,000
  • Actual Matchup: Nevada (WAC#2) vs. Southern Miss (C-USA #1*)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Southern Miss
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Southern Miss
  • The Actual Outcome: Southern Miss 24, Nevada 17

Idaho Potato Bowl (Humanitarian Bowl):

  • Saturday, December, 17th; Boise, Idaho; Bronco Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: WAC #1 or #2 vs. MAC #3 – Idaho (#3 WAC) vs. Temple (#3 MAC)
  • Payout: $750,000
  • Actual Matchup: Utah State (WAC #3) vs. Ohio (MAC #3)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Ohio
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Ohio
  • The Actual Outcome: Ohio 24, Utah State 23

New Mexico Bowl:

  • Saturday, December 17th; Albuquerque, New Mexico; University Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Pac-12 #7 vs. MWC #4 or #5 – Oregon State (#7 Pac-12) vs. Colorado State (#5 MWC)
  • Payout: $750,000
  • Actual Matchup: Wyoming (MWC #4) vs. Temple (MAC #5)*
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Wyoming
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Temple
  • The Actual Outcome: Temple 37, Wyoming 15
* Replacement team for a conference that does not have enough bowl-eligible teams to fulfill all of its obligations.

Beef ‘O’ Brady’s St. Petersburg Bowl:

  • Tuesday, December 2otht; St. Petersburg, Florida; Tropicana Field
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Big East #6 vs. C-USA #4 – Central Florida (#4 C-USA) vs. Cincinnati (Big East #5)
  • Payout: $500,000
  • Actual Matchup: Marshall (C-USA#5) vs. Florida International (Sun Belt #3*)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Marshall
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediciton: Marshall
  • The Actual Outcome: Marshall 20, Florida International 10
* Replacement team for a conference that does not have enough bowl-eligible teams to fulfill all of its obligations.

Poinsettia Bowl:

  • Wednesday, December 21st; San Diego, California; Qualcomm Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Navy vs. MWC #2/WAC #4 OR MWC #2 vs. WAC #5 –  Navy vs. Nevada (#4 WAC)
  • Payout: $500,000
  • Actual Matchup: TCU (MWC #2) vs. Louisiana Tech (WAC #1)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: TCU
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: TCU
  • The Actual Outcome: TCU 31, Louisiana Tech 24

New Orleans Bowl:

  • Saturday, December 17th; New Orleans, Louisiana; Superdome
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Sun Belt #1 vs. C-USA #5 – Florida International (#1 Sun Belt) vs. East Carolina  (#7 C-USA)
  • Payout: $500,000
  • Actual Matchup: Louisiana-Lafayette (Sun Belt #1) vs. San Diego State (MWC #5*) 
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Louisiana-Lafayette
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Louisiana-Lafayette
  • The Actual Outcome: Louisiana-Lafayette 32, San Diego State 30

* Replacement team for a conference that does not have enough bowl-eligible teams to fulfill all of its obligations.

Stay tuned for the next update to see who is ahead in the House of Dubsism of Challenge. Hell, tune in to see if there is still a House of Dubsism.


Guest Column: Santa Claus Has A Brutally Honest Gift For Sports Bloggers

Editor’s Note: Mr. Claus really needs no introduction, but as he will explain, he is an avid blog reader and came to us with some strong opinions he wanted to get published. Remember, these views are his own and if you have an issue with them, you can write your own nasty note to the North Pole. 

Since I only work one day a year, I have a lot of extra time. It may surprise you to know that I fill a lot of that time by reading blogs. It helps for those times when I have to work on my “naughty or nice” list.

A while back, I read a piece by Ryan Meehan and Dubsism about types of bloggers the world would be better off without. That piece came flooding back into my head this morning as I was checking out why some of my favorite blogs haven’t had any new posts in a while. As I’m going through my various readers, I’m noticing that in the sports blog world, there is far too high of an attrition rate amongst the people who are producing imaginative and readable content.

The other day, one of my favorite bloggers announced they are going on a hiatus. That usually means I’ve seen the last of them. I saw two more that made it official with the “goodbye” post.  As I looked over my subscriptions, all of a sudden I found myself asking a question: Why are some blogs naughty, why are some nice, and why do some just plain suck?

Granted, some trade in the blogosphere for the mainstream media because they get successful. Some get swallowed by content farms like SB Nation. And some just reach the end of their service life. After all, it isn’t easy to keep producing quality material on a regular basis. Lord knows this blog doesn’t meet that criteria; I’m just guest-posting here because they’ve touched this subject before.

The problem lies in a set of blogs that don’t go away, they just become stale. This was the point of the piece done by Meehan and J-Dub, but this problem has developed  its own sub-species in the sports blog world.  In order to avoid this pitfall, I’m going to give you sports bloggers a gift, one that you may find brutally honest, but it’s for your own good. In other words, here’s some tips from Santa to remember to keep your sports blog off my “sucks” list.

1) Write For the Right Reasons

Want to know a dirty little secret?  Blogging in and of itself will not get you a job at ESPN or anywhere else. Blogging in the hopes that it will make you the next Dan Patrick is like making a grilled cheese sandwich in the hopes of becoming a French chef.  This means if you want your blog not to suck, write about what you love, not what you think will get you a job.

There are far too many bloggers who keep putting “job at ESPN” on their wish lists to me. It ain’t gonna happen. If you want to work in main stream media, then do something that will get you a job; get an internship, be ready to work in various media (not just print), and be ready to deal with the competition. Having a blog may help your pursuit, but it won’t define it. Write because you love to write, not because you think it will get you anywhere.

2) Find Your Niche

Decide what you want to be, then be it.  If you want to be all about the New York Jets, then be all about the New York Jets. If you want to be about humor, then be about humor. Make it clear what your blog is about, then stick to it. Don’t tell the world you are a New York Jets blog, then start posting articles about rebuilding your classic car. Readers search out blogs expecting a certain type of content, and if you don’t deliver what they expect, they won’t be back.

3) Have A Voice

There’s no other way to say this…to get noticed, you must stand out. The quickest way to be lost in the crowd is to be doing the same thing as everybody else. In my RSS yesterday, there were 14 bloggers writing previews of the upcoming weekend of NFL action, and on Tuesday, those same fourteen will all be writing NFL Power Rankings or some other crap I can get from half a million other sources.

See, the most amazing thing about blogs is they allow the average guy an outlet for his voice which he wouldn’t have had a decade ago. If you must do the same as everybody else, then be the best; better yet, find your own way of doing it. Squandering your own voice by doing the same thing as everybody else is the ultimate in pointlessness.

4) Don’t Be Afraid To Bust Some Chops, But Be Smart About It

Now here’s the real reason I’m guest-posting this piece here. When I proposed this article to J-Dub, he knew that this piece might piss off a lot of people, but he agreed with it.

If there’s one thing you as a blogger should take away from this, it is to make the price of silencing your opinions high.  In other words, say whatever you want within the bounds of what won’t get you sued. If you are going to censor yourself, make sure there’s value to your silence.

ESPN gets criticized often for “being soft” on stories in sports which it has contracts to broadcast. For example, some people believe ESPN is not as critical of the bungling leadership of the NCAA as it should be because ESPN has a major broadcast deal with them.  Honestly, I don’t know why anybody is shocked by that; if you were in a partnership worth billions of dollars, you likely wouldn’t let your dog crap on your partner’s lawn. To be even more honest, that’s simply an example of what I’m telling you, just on a large scale.

In other words, while you don’t want to bite the hand that feeds you, you also can’t be afraid to bite somebody who deserves it.  Don’t get suckered by any “journalistic integrity” argument; that archaic concept died the day we started creating these colossal media conglomerates in this country.  It is more important to keep you fellow bloggers in mind. Say what you believe, but be able to back up what you say. Everytime a blogger gets discredited, the collective voice of the blogosphere suffers.

Understand, I’m not telling you this to say “your blog broke this rule, therefore your blogs sucks.” In fact, many blogs I read follow all of these guidelines.  But to be fair, some others have some room for growth.  We are doing ourselves a disservice by not fully capitalizing on the power of  blogging.  Blogs are such a tremendous tool that making bloggers better and therefore their products more viable is a gift for all of us.

Signs We Are Near The End Of Civilization: Spurrier Urban Wiley

Certain people should never be allowed to have children. While there are many types, today we need to discuss those who name their kids after football coaches. If for no other reason, those kids have no future.  The following story more than illustrates that.

When Urban Meyer decided to take the Ohio State job less than a year after retiring from Florida, many Gator fans were upset with their former coach. But few more so than Jen Wiley, who named her son after Urban because of her and her husband’s allegiance to Florida.

Wiley’s son, now 4 years old, is actually named Spurrier Urban Wiley, after Florida’s two national championship winning coaches — Steve Spurrier and Meyer — but after Meyer’s move to the Big Ten, Wiley wants to change her son’s middle name.

“My husband and I got married in 1996, when Spurrier won the championships,” she said, “and then we conceived in 2006 when Urban Meyer won the championship.”

It was a seemingly perfect fit for these Florida fanatics, until now. So mom’s ready for a change.

OK, so mom decides because Urban Meyer moved on, it is time to double-down on the mistake she made naming the kid in the first place.  Let’s take a look at what that means…

1) Mom has a weak sense of commitment

First of all, there’s almost no chance this kids’ parents remain married until he reaches adulthood. Mom is out the door the first time Dad farts during dinner. Not to mention, what’s Mom going to do the first time the kid pisses her off? Shoot him?

2) Mom has a warped sense of gratitude

Urban Meyer did all he was going to do at Florida. Instead of being grateful for what he did, this particular Gator fan is bitter that it was time for him to move on. What did she want Meyer to do? Have some early success , then spend two decades as mushroom on the sideline a la Bobby Bowden?

3) Mom missed a major point

There’s a reason why one should wait until a person is dead before you start naming things after them. The story nailed the reason specific to this case.

Raise your hand if you thought Meyer was going to stay retired. Anyone? Anyone? Coaches lie, they change their minds, they switch jobs. The best thing fans can do is not get too emotional and name their kids after them.

So, what is Mom’s solution?

“I want to change his middle name,” she said…If he does, she’s thinking Tim after Tim Tebow, the great Gator quarterback who is becoming a star in the NFL.

Perfect…nothing like illustrating your weak sense of commitment by replacing the name of a coach with that of a current fad.

My sympathies are with you, Spurrier Urban Wiley, or whatever your name will end up being.  Not only did your mother give you a name which guarantees at least half the state of Florida will want to beat your ass on daily basis, she’s going to use you as her own personal platform.

Nothing like being only 4 years old when you realize you are screwed.

What We Learned From This Weekend In Football 12/10/2011

1) This Tebow Thing Is Now Officially Out of Control

I watched the last three minutes of that Bears-Broncos game last night, and I still don’t believe what I saw. Sure, there’s all the stuff that surrounds Timmy Rah-Rah. You can see that on every other outlet out there. But the hype hides the unbelievable chain of events that led to the Broncos sixth straight victory.

To me, this all starts on the Broncos failed filed goal attempt in the 4th quarter when they are already down 10-0. That looked like the moment this run was going to end; after all, Denver was trailing 10-0 with 4:34 left. They had eeked out a mere 96 yards against one of the best defenses in the NFL and had no timeouts left. Worse yet, after the bears made it a two-possession game on Robbie Gould’s field goal, the next three Broncos’ offensive series yielded a mere two first downs and what seemed to be the dealing-sealing fumble.

Granted, Denver did score a touchdown after that, but the Bears have the ball with two minutes to go, and Denver has no timeouts. If Chicago can rack up a a first down, this ball game would have been over.

Then Marion Barber inexplicably runs out of bounds, stopping the clock and forcing the Bears to punt.

“Here it comes,” I thought to myself. “Here’s where it happens again…unbelievable.”

Sure enough, the Broncos got the ball back on their own 20-yard line with 53 seconds left, and after three of those wet Nerf-ball Tebow completions, Denver found itself on the Bears 41-yard line where Matt Prater nailed his first of two pressure-packed 50-plus-yard field goal attempts, the second being the game winner in overtime.

But even if you didn’t believe you were watching the Bronco magic happening again, you still had the failed on-side kick and the fact the Bears won the toss in overtime.

Then Marion Barber fumbled.

Everybody in the stadium knew what was going to happen next. Everybody watching on TV knew what was going to happen next. Dedicated Tebow haters like Stephen A. Smith and Colin Cowherd starting beating their wives in anticipation of what was going to happen. Even the Bears knew it was simply a matter of time at that point.

I can’t explain it, and I still don’t believe it…but you can’t argue with winning.

2) The Suckitude of Instant Replay Has Torn the Time-Space Continuum

Rod Taylor: Ahead of his time in time-stopping NFL officiating.

There’s how the 49ers got somewhat jobbed against the Cardinals this week. There’s how the Giants got robbed last week. But nothing was worse than how the officials in yesterday’s Packers-Raiders game ground the world to a complete halt.  Seriously, it was as if Rod Taylor from “The Time Machine” popped in to be an NFL referee, because for ten full minutes, the time-space continuum stopped; the cosmos literally being flung into suspended animation while some joker in a striped shirt couldn’t decide a call which anybody watching saw on take number one.

Seriously, these guys pissed around for ten earth-no-longer-orbiting-the-sun minutes all over that “Tuck Rule” which is apparently only invoked when a star quarterback is involved and it dicks the Raiders.

If that weren’t enough, on the very next play, the Raiders successfully challenged a Mike Mitchell interception in the back of the end zone that had incorrectly been ruled incomplete. That challenge lasted four minutes, which means in fifteen full minutes, we saw two snaps.

3) Will Army Ever Beat Navy again?

Easy math here..Navy has won 10 in row and 13 of the last 15. Maybe next year, we should Army have rifles so they have a shot…

4) Tony Romo…The Anti-Tebow

Think about it. As much as Tim Tebow seems to have some sort of Midas-like magic around him which rubs off on his team in crunch time, look at how Tony Romo always seems to be on the team which chokes on its own feces when it matters.

If you saw the look on Jerry Jones face at the end of last night’s game, I get the feeling the end of the Romo era in Dallas may be very near.

5) Attention Recievers: You Can Stop Making Circus Catches Now – It’s Been Done To Perfection

If Montana State wide receiver Elvis Akpla were a musician, he just combined the real Elvis with the Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, and (insert five of your favorite awesome bands here) with this unbelievable catch.

6) Updated Coaches Death Watch

Newly deceased in bold…

  • Houston Nutt, Mississippi
  • Rick Neuheisel, UCLA
  • Paul Wulff, Washington State
  • Dennis Erickson, Arizona State
  • Turner Gill, Kansas
  • Tony Sparano, Miami Dolphins (Miami Herald reports he’s gone at the end of the year, but he doesn’t get crossed off as long as he still has a key to his office)
  • Neil Callaway, Alabama-Birmingham
  • Mike Riley, Oregon State
  • Jack Del Rio, Jacksonville Jaguars
  • Steve Fairchild, Colorado State
  • Steve Spagnuolo, St. Louis Rams
  • Frank Spaziani, Boston College
  • Mike Sherman, Texas A&M
  • Todd Haley, Kansas City Chiefs
  • Luke Fickell, Ohio State (replaced, but retained on new head coach Urban Meyer’s staff)
  • Andy Reid, Philadelphia Eagles
  • Lezlie Frazier, Minnesota Vikings
  • Jim Caldwell, Indianapolis Colts
  • Norv Turner, San Diego Chargers

Once Again, Dan Gilbert Exemplifies What Is Wrong With The NBA

It’s no secret the Cleveland Cavaliers owner is an emotional guy.  But he’s also an idiot. But it is his very instability which will allow us here at Dubsism to perform one of our patented line-by-line breakdowns to illustrate exactly why he personifies the problem which clearly still exists in the NBA.

In the wake of the proposed-then-rejected three-team Chris Paul trade, Gilbert popped off another one of his delusional rants. However, in this one, he exposed himself as the soul of the problem. It’s subtle, which is why we spent a few days combing over his statement so we could tease out what he really means.


It would be a travesty to allow the Lakers to acquire Chris Paul in the apparent trade being discussed.

This trade should go to a vote of the 29 owners of the Hornets.

One of the big problems we have in this country is we spend to much time listening to people who don’t matter. Trust me, the irony of saying that on a blog which gets six readers isn’t lost on me, but until  Dubsism buys ESPN, this is what I’ve got.

Even thought the league “owns” the Hornets, and even though Gilbert owns a franchise in the NBA, Dan Gilbert doesn’t matter to the big picture of the league and he knows it. At one point he mattered; when his franchise had the biggest star in the league. He will go to his grave pissed off because when LeBron James left Cleveland, Gilbert simultaneously became irrelevant and the value of his franchise dropped 30%.  The whole reason he wants to have a vote is because it is the only way anybody will give a damn what he thinks.

“Over the next three seasons this deal would save the Lakers approximately $20 million in salaries and approximately $21 million in luxury taxes. That $21 million goes to non-taxpaying teams and to fund revenue sharing.”

Here’s another dead give-away that Gilbert is simply being a petulant, self-absorbed pain-in-the-ass. Re-read that paragraph, bearing in mind we’ve just emerged from a six-month lockout all during which everybody from the ownership side kept beating a drum to the tune of controlling the cost of business.

So, we have the Lakers figuring out a way to get “the best player in the trade” and spend less money on top of it, and this parasite is criticizing it.  Re-read it again if you must  and note what he is NOT saying.  It is important to note he’s not upset about “competitive balance,” he’s not bleating anything about “big market/small market,” in fact he has yet to mention ANYTHING about the “collective good of the league.”  Keep and that in mind as you read forward.

“I cannot remember ever seeing a trade where a team got by far the best player in the trade and saved over $40 million in the process.”

Remember, this is coming from a guy who couldn’t figure out how to keep the ONE asset which made his franchise valuable in a league which had the “Larry Bird” rule.  Remember, his failure was visible to everybody who can read; who knew that the contract between James and the Cavaliers ended on a particular date. Yet Gilbert loves to pretend like LeBron skulked out of town in the middle of the night with no warning.

It is Gilbert’s head-up-his-own-ass attitude which explains why some franchises do well and some don’t regardless of how a league is structured.  Gilbert is simply not a very good owner; it’s not like the LeBron situation was the only time he had to make decisions. Look at the roster of slag-heaps with which he surrounded his star.  He doesn’t know the first thing about building a winner, and he never will.

This is only going to get worse in a league with increased revenue sharing, or as I like to call it “rewarding failure.”  Gilbert is literally banking on the the Lakers to overspend because he gets paid if they do.  In other words, he is living off the success of others by being a failure himself.  You can follow Gilbert’s logic as he keeps digging his own grave…

“And it doesn’t appear that they would give up any draft picks, which might allow to later make a trade for Dwight Howard. (They would also get a large trade exception that would help them improve their team and/or eventually trade for Howard.) When the Lakers got Pau Gasol (at the time considered an extremely lopsided trade) they took on tens of millions in additional salary and luxury tax and they gave up a number of prospects (one in Marc Gasol who may become a max-salary player).”

This would be laughable, if it weren’t so pathetic. Here’s a guy who can’t run his own franchise, yet somehow he has the temerity and the foresight to tell us just where the Lakers might be headed. That last paragraph is the one in which he’s finally getting off his own whine and takes up the “small market” argument without actually saying those particular buzzwords. In the span of three sentences, he goes from “The Lakers are going to be better than me” (like they weren’t already) to “The Lakers need to pay for my failure.”

Let’s talk about that “small market” thing for a minute. It is obvious there is a money problem in the NBA, but blaming it on this “class warfare” type argument is ludicrous. Ask yourself a question: If market size is the be-all, end-all of franchise success, why have Clippers sucked for 30 years? With precious few exceptions, why have the Knicks and Nets been terrible for just as long?  Conversely, how have the Spurs been a consistent contender? How did the Pacers stay a playoff team for the majority of the past two decades?

“I just don’t see how we can allow this trade to happen.”

Let me see if I can explain that to you, Dan. First of all, it isn’t up to “we.” Secondly, since you seem to believe that Jerry Buss is your own personal ATM, then the league should probably find a way to let him make some money since you obviously can’t.   No matter what you do with revenue-sharing, at the front-end of the process somebody has to make the money. The league has a much better chance of doing that with a few “super teams” than with a league full of teams with razor-thin operating margins.

No matter how you slice it, New York will always be a more profitable market than Indianapolis.  But the dirty little secret is that profitability and “competitive balance” don’t go hand-in-hand. Take the example of the Knicks and Pacers. The Pacers have been in the playoffs 16 out of the last 20 years, and are a financial black-hole. In that same stretch the Knicks have largely been a competitive bottom-feeder, but they’ve been a profitable one.

When you boil it down, what is really killing this league is not the fact that we may end up with five or six “super teams,” it the fact that is has far too many Rashard Lewis and Samuel Dalembert types; guys getting 11 points a game on $100 million contracts.

“I know the vast majority of owners feel the same way that I do.”

I am always suspicious at people who presume to speak for others. They almost never do.

“When will we just change the name of 25 of the 30 teams to the Washington Generals?”

I really can’t improve on the answer to this question offered by Tommy Craggs over at Deadspin

“When will we just change the name of 25 of the 30 teams to the Washington Generals?” obstreperous bullshitter Dan Gilbert said in a message to Stern, apparently written in the sort of pleading, self-pitying prose one finds in prison letters. Here’s the bullshit thing about that: You are the Washington Generals. You have always been the Washington Generals, and until the NBA goes commie and starts arming the peasantry and redistributing the land—a la the NFL—you will go on being the Washington Generals. All sports are rigged to one degree or another. The NFL is rigged so that everyone is the Washington Generals. MLB is rigged so that the Washington Generals, upon receiving their annual bribe, are mostly content to remain the Washington Generals. And, yes, the NBA is rigged so that a handful of teams—the teams the general public actually likes to watch on TV—get to enjoy their native blessings, and everyone else is the Washington Generals.”

Like I said, that really nails it down, but I will need to come back to this in a minute.

Please advise….

Dan G.

You asked for it, so here’s the best advice I can offer you, Dan.

  • Sell the Cavaliers. Take the loss and call it a learning experience.
  • Stop sending emails when you are pissed off. Count to 100 before you click the “send” button.
  • Generally stay out of the public eye from now on.

You might as well sell and get out, because the only people who buy your argument are other people who don’t matter. Even David Stern doesn’t give a shit about what you think; don’t believe for a minute he killed this trade because of what you said.

Let’s dissect that. First, there’s your complete irrelevancy. Stern is a guy who in theory works for all the owners, but in fact he works for the ones who make money. They are the ones who matter, and you are not one of them, Dan.

As to the reasons why Stern killed the deal, while he may work for the owners, he is also a self-preservationist. Face it, even though there are 20 owners in this league who individually don’t matter, together they can cause Stern a political problem if they decide they want him out.

Remember, Stern just led them in a war which those 20 owners were led to believe was being fought on their behalf; his “Remember The Alamo”-style unifying mantra being “competitive balance.” Make no mistake, there’s going to be five or six “super teams,” but Stern couldn’t play a role in making it happen before the ink on the new collective bargaining agreement was even dry.

Worse yet, “competitive balance” was more than a mantra, it was the whole reason the owners went to war in the first place. This means Stern really has to wait until he has the next bribe for those small owners before he can give them the unlubricated prison-rape which has been in their future for about three years now.  In other words, Stern needs to maximize the value of the Hornets (which never happens with Pao Gasol as your “marquee” player) so the cut the owners get from the league’s sale of the team is therefore maximized.

Once he’s fattened up the 20 minnows, Stern is going to let them swim with the 10 sharks. Dan Gilbert, whether you like it or not, you have two choices. Either take you chances as a minnow, and accept whatever fate is dealt to you, or get out of the water.

The Dubsism 2011-2012 College Football Bowl Matchups: I Was So Wrong Now My Wife Thinks She Knows More Than I Do

EDITOR’S NOTE: The original predictions that were made here back in August were based on an assumption the NCAA will would rule Ohio State, Miami (FL), and Auburn ineligible for post-season competition. These picks are noted, despite the fact that never happened; only Miami (FL) took itself out of bowl consideration. That’s not an excuse for my atrocious prognostication, but it’s what I’ve got.

And for “that guy” who wants to yell at me about how screwed up the bowl system is…Yeah, I get that, but it is also what we’ve got for now. If you wnat to talk about a college playoff, read this first then you can argue with me. And before you yell at me about the numbers associated with each team, remember those are not indicative of  finishes and/or conference standings. Rather they reflect the order in which teams were selected from a conference. Don’t forget bowl committees are allowed to select who they want in their games, within certain contractual commitments.

For example, bowls game outside of the BCS which has a Big East tie-in have a conditional option under which they can select Notre Dame instead. This is why you will see the Irish listed as Big East #2.

The Big East also has an unusual relationship with the Liberty Bowl, which is why Cincinnati is headed for a game traditional slated as an SEC/C-USA matchup.

Lastly, there”s the whole Boise State situation…I understand they might feel like they got jobbed, but they knew the rules going in. It’s not like they couldn’t have eliminated this problem by joining conference. Maybe this is why they’ve announced they are joining the Big East in 2013.

Now, for the fun part. since my wife gets to listen to most of these rants before the ever hit the interwebz, she thinks she actually knows more than me when it comes to college football. Of course, this means a bowl-picking challenge…

Bowl Championship Series:

BCS Championship:

  • Monday, January 9th, New Orleans, Louisiana,  Superdome
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: BCS #1 vs. BCS #2 – Alabama (#1 SEC) vs. Wisconsin (#1 Big Ten)
  • Payout: $18,000,000
  • Actual Matchup: LSU (BCS #1, SEC #1) vs. Alabama (BCS#2, SEC #2)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: LSU
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Alabama

Fiesta Bowl:

  • Thursday, January 5th, Glendale Arizona, University of Phoenix Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Big 12 Champion/BCS vs. BCS At-Large – Oklahoma (#1 Big 12) vs. Boise State (#1 MWC)
  • Payout: $17,000,000
  • Actual Matchup:  Oklahoma State (#1 Big 12) vs. Stanford (#2 Pac-12, BCS at-large)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Oklahoma State
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction:  Stanford

Rose Bowl:

  • Monday, January 2nd; Pasadena, California; Rose Bowl
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup:  Big Ten Champion/BCS vs. Pac-12 Champion/BCS – Oregon (#1 Pac-12) vs. Nebraska (#2 Big Ten)*
  • Payout : $17,000,000
  • Actual Matchup: Wisconsin (Big Ten #1) vs. Oregon (Pac-12 #1)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Oregon
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Wisconsin

* I thought Nebraska would replace the Big Ten Champion (Wisconsin) which would be in BCS Championship. Didn’t happen.

Orange Bowl:

  • Wednesday, January 4th; Miami, Florida; Dolphin Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: ACC Champion vs. Big East Champion/BCS – Florida State (#1 ACC) vs. West Virginia (#1 Big East)
  • Payout: $17,000,000
  • Actual Matchup: Clemson (ACC #1) vs. West Virginia (Big East #1, BCS at-large)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Clemson
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Clemson

Sugar Bowl:

  • Tuesday, January 3rd; New Orleans, Louisiana; Superdome
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: SEC Champion BCS vs. Big East Champion/BCS –  LSU (#2 SEC)* vs. Oklahoma State (#2 Big 12)
  • Payout: $17,000,000
  • Actual Matchupt: Michigan (Big Ten #2*, BCS at-large) vs. Virginia Tech (ACC #2, BCS at-large)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Michigan
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Michigan
*I thought LSU would replace the SEC Champion (Alabama) which would be in BCS Championship. Half-right…Michigan ends up here because of two SEC teams being in the BCS championship game.


Capital One Bowl:

  • Monday, January 2nd; Orlando, Florida; Florida Citrus Bowl Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: SEC #2 vs. Big Ten #2 – South Carolina (#3 SEC) vs. Michigan State (#4 Big Ten)*
  • Payout: $4,600,000
  • Actual Matchup: South Carolina (SEC #3) vs. Nebraska (Big Ten #3)
  • The Dubsism Prediction:  South Carolina
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction:  South Carolina

*I thought Michigan State would replace Ohio State since we assumed the NCAA would rule them ineligible. Total whiff. I’d like to thank the NCAA for getting my back on that one.

Cotton Bowl Classic:

  • Friday, January 6th; Dallas, Texas; Cowboys Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Big 12 #2 vs. SEC #3 or #4 – Texas A&M (Big 12 #3) vs. Arkansas (SEC #4)
  • Payout: $3,625,000
  • Actual Matchup: Kansas State (Big 12 #2) vs. Arkansas (SEC #4)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Arkansas
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Kansas State

Insight Bowl:

  • Friday, December 30th; Tempe, Arizona; Sun Devil Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Big 12 #4 vs. Big Ten #4/5 – Missouri (#4 Big 12) vs. Iowa (#6 Big Ten)
  • Payout: $3,350,000
  • Actual Matchup: Oklahoma (Big 12 #4) vs. Iowa (Big Ten #5)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Oklahoma
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Iowa

Chick-Fil-A Bowl:

  • Saturday, December 31st; Atlanta, Georgia; Georgia Dome
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: ACC #2 vs. SEC #5 – Virginia Tech (ACC #2) vs. Georgia (SEC #6)*
  • Payout: $3,967,500 ACC; $2,932,500 SEC
  • Actual Matchup: Virginia (ACC #3) vs. Auburn (SEC #5)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Auburn
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Auburn

* Again, I had Georgia here as I thought Auburn would be ruled ineligible by the NCAA. Fat chance.

Outback Bowl:

  • Monday, January 2nd; Tampa, Florida; Raymond James Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Big Ten #3  vs. SEC #3 , #4, or #5  – Penn State (#5 Big Ten) vs. Mississippi State (#6 SEC) 
  • Payout $3,500,000
  • Actual Matchup:  Michigan State (Big Ten #4) vs. Georgia (SEC #6)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Michigan State
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Michigan State

Alamo Bowl:

  • Thursday, December 29th; San Antonio, Texas, Alamodome
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Pac-12 #2 vs. Big 12 #3 – Stanford (#2 Pac-12) vs. Texas (#5 Big 12)
  • Payout: $3,175,000
  • Actual Matchup: Washington (Pac-12 #3) vs. Baylor (Big 12 #3)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Baylor
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Baylor

Gator Bowl:

  • Monday, January 2nd; Jacksonville, Florida; Jacksonville Municipal Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Big 10 #4 or #5 vs. SEC #6 – Michigan (#7 Big Ten) vs. Florida (#8 SEC)
  • Payout: $2,700,000
  • Actual Matchup: Ohio State (Big Ten #6) vs. Florida (SEC #7)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Ohio State
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Florida

Champs Sports Bowl:

  • Friday, December 29th, Orlando, Florida; Florida Citrus Bowl Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Big East #2 vs. ACC #3 – South Florida (#2 Big East) vs. North Carolina (#4 ACC)*
  • Payout: $2,325,000
  • Actual Matchup: Notre Dame (Big East #2**) vs. Florida State (ACC #4)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Florida State
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Florida State
* I had North Carolina in this spot replacing Miami (FL) as I assumed the NCAA would rule them ineligible. The fact the ‘Canes committed the bowl equivalent of seppuku didn’t really help me.

** The Champs Sports Bowl can select Notre Dame instead of a Big East team once in the four-year period stretching from 2010-13.

Holiday Bowl:

  • Wednesday, December 28th, San Diego, California; Qualcomm Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup:  Pac-12 #3 vs. Big 12 #5 – Arizona State (#4 Pac-12*) vs.  Baylor (#6 Big 12)
  • Payout: $2,150,000
  • Actual Matchup: California (Pac-12 #4) vs. Texas (Big 12 #5)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Texas
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Texas

* Normally, this is where I would have put USC, but since they actually are ineligible…

Sun Bowl:

  • Saturday, December 31st; El Paso, Texas; Sun Bowl
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Pac-12 #4 vs. ACC #4 –  Utah (#5 Pac-12) vs. Maryland (#5 ACC)
  • Payout: $2,000,000
  • Actual Matchup: Georgia Tech (ACC #5) vs. Utah (Pac-12 #5)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Utah
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Georgia Tech

Music City Bowl:

  • Thursday, December 30th; Nashville, Tennessee; LP Field
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: ACC #6 vs. SEC #7 – Boston College (#7 ACC) vs. Tennessee (#9 SEC)
  • Payout: $1,837,500
  • Actual Matchup: Wake Forest (ACC #7) vs. Mississippi State (SEC #8)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Mississippi State
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Mississippi State

Pinstripe Bowl:

  • Friday, December 30th; New York City, New York; Yankee Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Big East #4 vs. Big 12 #7 – Notre Dame* vs. Texas Tech (#7 Big 12)
  • Payout: $1,800,000
  • Actual Matchup: Rutgers (Big East #4) vs. Iowa State (Big 12 #7)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Rutgers
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Iowa State

* Notre Dame is eligible for any Bowl spot contracted to the Big East conference.  How was I supposed to know the Big East would be so lousy the Irish would get snapped up first? On second thought, don’t answer that…

Belk Bowl:

  • Tuesday, December 27th; Charlotte, North Carolina; Bank of America Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: ACC #5 vs. Big East #3 – Clemson (#6 ACC) vs. Pittsburgh (#3 Big East)
  • Payout: $1,700,000
  • Actual Matchup: Louisville (Big East #3) vs. N.C. State (ACC #6)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: N.C. State
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Louisville

Liberty Bowl:

  • Saturday, December 31st; Memphis, Tennessee; Memorial Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: C-USA #1 vs. SEC #8 – Houston (#1 C-USA) vs. Kentucky (#10 SEC)
  • Payout: $1,700,000
  • Actual Matchup: Cincinnati (Big East #4*) vs. Vanderbilt (SEC #9)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Vanderbilt
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Cincinnati

*There’s a whole explanation for why there is a Big East team here instead of C-USA #1. The best one is here. In a nutshell, if there are eight SEC bowl-eligible teams, the Liberty Bowl matches Conference USA versus the Big East, but if there are nine SEC bowl-eligible teams, then it’s SEC versus Big East.

Meineke Car Care Bowl of Texas:
  • Saturday, December 31st; Houston, Texas; Reliant Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Big 12 #6 vs. Big Ten #6 – Northwestern (#8 Big Ten) vs. Kansas State (#8 Big 12)
  • Payout: $1,700,000
  • Actual Matchup: Northwestern (Big Ten #8) vs. Texas A&M (Big 12 #6)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Northwestern
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Texas A&M

Independence Bowl:

  • Monday, December, 26th; Shreveport, Louisiana; Independence Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: MWC #3 vs. ACC #7 – Air Force (#3 MWC) vs. North Carolina State (#8 ACC)
  • Payout: $1,150,000
  • Actual Matchup: Missouri (Big 12 #8*) vs. North Carolina (ACC #8)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: North Carolina
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Missouri
* Replacement team for a conference that does not have enough bowl-eligible teams to fulfill all of its obligations.

TicketCity Bowl:

  • Monday, January 2nd; Dallas, Texas, Cotton Bowl
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Big Ten #7 vs. C-USA #2 – Illinois (#9 Big Ten) vs. Tulsa (#2 C-USA)
  • Payout: $1,100,000
  • Actual Matchup: Penn State (Big Ten #7) vs. Houston (C-USA #2)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Penn State
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Penn State

MAACO Las Vegas Bowl:

  • Thursday, December 22nd; Las Vegas, Nevada; Sam Boyd Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: MWC #1 vs. Pac-12 #5 – TCU (#2 MWC) vs. Arizona (#6 Pac-12)
  • Payout: $1,100,000
  • Actual Matchup: Boise State (MWC #1) vs. Arizona State (Pac-12 #6)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Boise State
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Boise State

BBVA Compass Bowl:

  • Saturday, January 7th; Birmingham, Alabama; Legion Field
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Big East #5 vs. SEC #8 – Connecticut (#4 Big East) vs. Alabama – Birmingham (C-USA #5*)
  • Payout: $900,000 SEC; $600,000 Big East
  • Actual Matchup: Pittsburgh (Big East #5) vs. SMU (C-USA #4*)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: SMU
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: SMU
* Replacement team for a conference that does not have enough bowl-eligible teams to fulfill all of its obligations.

Military Bowl:

  • Wednesday, December 28th; Washington, D.C.; RFK Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup:  ACC #8/MAC #4 vs. Army/C-USA #6 – Miami (OH) (#4 MAC) vs. Southern Methodist (#6 C-USA)
  • Payout: $862,500
  • Actual Matchup: Air Force (MWC #3)* vs. Toledo (MAC #4) 
  • The Dubsism Predicition: Air Force
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Toledo
* Replacement team for a conference that does not have enough bowl-eligible teams to fulfill all of its obligations.

Armed Forces Bowl:

  • Friday, December 30th; Dallas, Texas; Gerald J. Ford Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: C-USA #3/Army vs. MWC #4 or #5 or BYU – Southern Mississippi (#3 C-USA) vs. San Diego State (#4 MWC)
  • Payout: $600,000
  • Actual Matchup: Tulsa (C-USA #3) vs. BYU 
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Tulsa
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: BYU

Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl:

  • Saturday, December 31st; San Francisco, California; AT&T Park
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Pac-12 #6 vs. Army or WAC #1 or #2 – Washington (#8 Pac-12) vs. Army
  • Payout: $837,500
  • Actual Matchup: UCLA (Pac-12 #7) vs. Illinois* (Big Ten #10)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: UCLA
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Illinois

*The Big Ten fulfilled all of its contractual obligation, but had an extra team that was bowl-eligible, hence Illinois gets a trip west. Which means if there were ever a game which proves we have too many bowl games, this may be it. After all, don’t you think that teams making it to the post-season would have performed well enough they did not fire their coaches? Well, both these schools made the post-season, and both gassed their coaches.

Little Caesars Pizza Bowl:

  • Tuesday, December 27th; Detroit, Michigan; Ford Field
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: MAC  #1 or #2 vs. Big Ten #8  – Northern Illinois (#2 MAC) vs.  Fresno State (#1 WAC)*
  • Payout: $750,000
  • Actual Matchup: Western Michigan (MAC #2) vs. Purdue (Big Ten #9)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Western Michigan
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Purdue

*Replaces Big Ten spot as the team normally available for this spot will already have been selected by another bowl Bowl

  • Sunday, January 8th; Mobile, Alabama; Ladd Peebles Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: MAC #1 0r #2 vs. Sun Belt #2 – Toledo  (#1 MAC) vs. Troy (#2 Sun Belt)
  • Payout: $750,000
  • Actual Matchup: Northern Illinois (MAC #1) vs. Arkansas State (Sun Belt #2)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Northern Illinois
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Northern Illinois

Hawaii Bowl:

  • Saturday, December 24th; Honolulu, Hawaii; Aloha Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: At-Large  vs. WAC #3 or Hawaii – UCLA (#9 Pac-12) vs. Hawaii (#2 WAC) 
  • Payout: $750,000
  • Actual Matchup: Nevada (WAC#2) vs. Southern Miss (C-USA #1*)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Southern Miss
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Southern Miss

Idaho Potato Bowl (Humanitarian Bowl):

  • Saturday, December, 17th; Boise, Idaho; Bronco Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: WAC #1 or #2 vs. MAC #3 – Idaho (#3 WAC) vs. Temple (#3 MAC)
  • Payout: $750,000
  • Actual Matchup: Utah State (WAC #3) vs. Ohio (MAC #3)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Ohio
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Ohio

New Mexico Bowl:

  • Saturday, December 17th; Albuquerque, New Mexico; University Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Pac-12 #7 vs. MWC #4 or #5 – Oregon State (#7 Pac-12) vs. Colorado State (#5 MWC)
  • Payout: $750,000
  • Actual Matchup: Wyoming (MWC #4) vs. Temple (MAC #5)*
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Wyoming
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Temple
* Replacement team for a conference that does not have enough bowl-eligible teams to fulfill all of its obligations.

Beef ‘O’ Brady’s St. Petersburg Bowl:

  • Tuesday, December 2otht; St. Petersburg, Florida; Tropicana Field
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Big East #6 vs. C-USA #4 – Central Florida (#4 C-USA) vs. Cincinnati (Big East #5)
  • Payout: $500,000
  • Actual Matchup: Marshall (C-USA#5) vs. Florida International (Sun Belt #3*)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Marshall
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediciton: Marshall
* Replacement team for a conference that does not have enough bowl-eligible teams to fulfill all of its obligations.

Poinsettia Bowl:

  • Wednesday, December 21st; San Diego, California; Qualcomm Stadium
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Navy vs. MWC #2/WAC #4 OR MWC #2 vs. WAC #5 –  Navy vs. Nevada (#4 WAC)
  • Payout: $500,000
  • Actual Matchup: TCU (MWC #2) vs. Louisiana Tech (WAC #1)
  • The Dubsism Prediction: TCU
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: TCU

New Orleans Bowl:

  • Saturday, December 17th; New Orleans, Louisiana; Superdome
  • Traditional/Contractual Matchup: Sun Belt #1 vs. C-USA #5 – Florida International (#1 Sun Belt) vs. East Carolina  (#7 C-USA)
  • Payout: $500,000
  • Actual Matchup: Louisiana-Lafayette (Sun Belt #1) vs. San Diego State (MWC #5*) 
  • The Dubsism Prediction: Louisiana-Lafayette
  • The Mrs. Dubsism Prediction: Louisiana-Lafayette
* Replacement team for a conference that does not have enough bowl-eligible teams to fulfill all of its obligations. 

What We Learned From This Weekend in Football 12/4/2011

1) Stick a Fork in ‘Em… The Philadelphia Eagles  Turkeys are Done

Just by taking the Sgt. Joe Friday approach (“Just the facts”), one can see it is time to blow up this thing in Philadelphia. The Michael Vick thing was a mistake, DeSean Jackson is a cancer, and the whole “Dream Team” thing was an unmitigated disaster. It’s time to clean house from the general manager on down and start over.

2) Conference Championship Games are Meaningless

Name one thing that would have changed had Georgia beaten LSU? The BCS championship game was decided two weeks ago. The outcome of the Michigan State/Wisconsin game would have only re-arranged a few deck chairs on the BCS cruise ship…Wiscy was in the BCS no matter what, and Sparty would simply have taken Michigan’s place in the field; with Wisconsin going to the Sugar Bowl.  Remember, the BCS is more an exercise about conference affiliation and who will travel well. Keeping that in consideration, the fun question becomes what would the BCS have done had Penn State been the 2-loss Big Ten team rather Michigan?

Not to mention, the most exciting thing that happens in most of them is that silly halftime challenge where some guy from the stands tosses a football into a giant can for some sort of prize.  Yawn.

3) Instant Replay Still Solves Nothing

Today’s example of the uselessness of instant replay came from the SEC Championship game when Tyrann “Honey Badger” Mathieu apparently flipped the ball to the official before he has actually scored.

Now, instant replay caught this, but the officials charged with reviewing the replay completely missed it. In fact, nobody caught it except the announcers doing the game, and Verne Lundquist and Gary Danielson didn’t catch this until at least five plays later when it was a completely moot point.  This is the perfect example of one of my biggest beefs with instant replay as an officiating tool. The supposition is that replay erases mistakes; it very obviously does not.

4) Updated Coaches Death Watch

  • Houston Nutt, Mississippi
  • Rick Neuheisel, UCLA
  • Paul Wulff, Washington State
  • Dennis Erickson, Arizona State
  • Turner Gill, Kansas
  • Tony Sparano, Miami Dolphins
  • Neil Callaway, Alabama-Birmingham
  • Mike Riley, Oregon State
  • Jack Del Rio, Jacksonville Jaguars
  • Steve Fairchild, Colorado State
  • Steve Spagnuolo, St. Louis Rams
  • Frank Spaziani, Boston College
  • Mike Sherman, Texas A&M
  • Todd Haley, Kansas City Chiefs
  • Luke Fickell, Ohio State (replaced, but retained on new head coach Urban Meyer’s staff)
  • Andy Reid, Philadelphia Eagles
  • Lezlie Frazier, Minnesota Vikings
  • Jim Caldwell, Indianapolis Colts
  • Norv Turner, San Diego Chargers

5) Finally, A Minnesota Viking Fan I Can Relate To…

Honestly, I need to double-fist it to get through a Viking game as well…

Tebonics – The Language of Tim Tebow

Say whatever you will about Tim Tebow, but for some reason he’s like Nickleback; people either love him or hate him. Frankly, I think part of the trouble Tebow has is that he speaks in a language all his own.

It’s easy to miss this language barrier; the tricky part is that Tebonics sounds just like English. But the similarities end with the sound; it just doesn’t have the same meanings. To illustrate this, we here at Dubsism invested in two cases of bourbon an advanced linguistics class, then took some famous Tebow quotes and studied them. To that end, we have discovered there are actually two parts to each translation; there’s what you think it means, then there’s what it really means.

The Tebonic Quote: “Chris Leak’s a great quarterback. I’m not going to worry about (trying to get playing time). I’m just going to train as hard as I can, and that’s all I can do.”

  • What You Thought It Meant: Tebow said this upon his entry to the University of Florida as possibly the most heavily-recruited player in the history of the SEC. It’s really easy to take this as the boiler-plate humility the new kid on campus is supposed to show.
  • What Timmy Really Meant:  “A few years from now, nobody outside of Gainesville is going to remember who Chris Leak is, and while those people may recall him, they will be doing so in the shadow of a statue of me.  Don’t wait until the last minute to start worshiping me; that band-wagon is going to get full quick.”

The Tebonic Quote: To the fans and everybody in Gator Nation, I’m sorry. I’m extremely sorry. We were hoping for an undefeated season. That was my goal, something Florida has never done here. I promise you one thing, a lot of good will come out of this. You will never see any player in the entire country play as hard as I will play the rest of the season. You will never see someone push the rest of the team as hard as I will push everybody the rest of the season. You will never see a team play harder than we will the rest of the season. God bless.”

  • What You Thought It Meant: Originally, this played as a tearful, emotional moment with Tebow apologizing to Gator Nation after yet another loss to Mississippi State.
  • What Timmy Really Meant: “Have you ever spilled a soda on your kitchen floor, and no matter how thoroughly you mop it up, there always those sticky spots you find later; the ones that attract the roaches? That’s what cleaning up after Ron Zook is like.”
The Tebonic Quote: “You just try to be nice to everybody and treat them all the same. Treat them how you would want to be treated.”
  • What You Thought It Meant: By now, you have figured out Timmy’s “go to” move is the humility; which really shouldn’t shock anybody who has studied the public presentation of being dedicated to a industrial strength Christianity-based belief system.
  • What Timmy Really Meant: “One should always at least be respectful of people, but let’s be honest…I’m going to be arguably the most-mentioned name in football for at the very least a few years yet, so as long as I don’t let that go to my head, people will still cheer for me.  I was the most-popular jersey sold in the NFL before I ever set foot on a professional field. Tom Brady can’t say that. Peyton Manning can’t say that. Donkeykong Suh can’t even say that. Know who can? The guy I see in the mirror every morning!”

The Tebonic Quote: “When guys say ‘I’m not a role model.  Well, yes you are.  You’re just a bad one.”

  • What You Thought It Meant:  Tebow believes that athletes are role models whether they want to be or not.
  • What Timmy Really Meant: There’s a rule about openly being a bible-thumper…for every three humble things you say, you have to say one which is pretentious and slightly accusatory.

The Tebonic Quote: “Coach Meyer was like a father figure to me…I went their because of relationships, especially Coach Meyer.”

  • What You Thought It Meant: “Pope Urban I was a good guy, especially when he let me declare a Crusade on the rest of the SEC.”
  • What Timmy Really Meant: “Like there was a chance I was going to Alabama…Dave Shula was such a dipshit.”

The Tebonic Quote: “I’m going to listen to John Elway. He knows what he’s talking about.”

  • What You Thought It Meant: “I’m going to listen to John Elway. He knows what he’s talking about.”
  • What Timmy Really Meant: “You thought I couldn’t win in the NFL. Appreciate that. Fuck John Elway.”

The Tebonic Quote: “As a competitor and an athlete, you have to believe in yourself.  And you have to believe in the people who believe in you.”

  • What You Thought It Meant: “Hate me all you want. I’m still getting paid, and I’m winning.”
  • What Timmy Really Meant: “Colin Cowherd can lick the inside of my jock.”

The Tebonic Quote: “I am not better than anyone else just because I play football.”

  • What You Thought It Meant: Another statement intended for playing the “humble” card.
  • What Timmy Really Meant: “I may not be a better person, but I’ve got a pretty sweet life. Think about that when you are talking smack about me from your overnight security guard job.”

The Tebonic Quote: “She’s a lovely girl, and a valued friend.”

  • What You Thought It Meant: Christian or not, look at that rack.
  • What Timmy Really Meant: “If I gave her a ‘pearl necklace,’ am I still a virgin?”

Hopefully now, whenever you hear Tebow speak, you will be better prepared to crack the code that is Tebonics.

You’re welcome.


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