10.15.16

TSN’s DeCourcy To Cash-Strapped Student Athletes : STFU & Show Some Gratitude

Posted in Basketball, College Spurts, The Marketplace at 7:10 pm by

OK, that’s not exactly what The Sporting News columnist Mike DeCourcy had to say about University of Wisconsin F Nigel Hayes using tonight’s Ohio State vs. Wisconsin game at Camp Randall Stadium as a photo op / electronic begging platform (see above), but pretty close. Y’see, not only is DeCourcy skeptical that Hayes is actually skint (“one of us knows enough about Hayes’ financial situation to know whether he truly is ‘broke’… what we do know is he receives a scholarship from Wisconsin that covers his tuition, room & board, books and fees, which combined total nearly $45,000 annually,”), but he’s quick to wonder, if the hoops scholarship is so shitty, why is Hayes still enrolled?

It was his decision to compete as a senior. He could have stayed in the draft, gone to summer league and into an NBA training camp. He could have signed to play professionally overseas if none of that went exactly as he wished. There was no shortage of opportunity available to a player of Hayes’ skills and accomplishments.

Beyond rules violations, there is the imprudence of Hayes making the case that he is being taken advantage of when he willingly accepted his current arrangement for a fourth consecutive year.

Friday on Twitter, Hayes posted a message stating sarcastically, “If only there was enough money to pay us,” after quoting a USA Today report that the Big Ten Conference generated $448 million in revenue.

But how much did the University of Wisconsin generate through the tuition it collects from its 43,000 students? It’s a whole lot more than $448 million.

Indeed. And what portion of that annual tuition windfall can be traced, in part, to Wisconsin’s membership in the Big Ten and their ability to compete at a high level in football and basketball? Were Hayes attempting to drag eyeballs to this particular topic after signing an NBA rookie contract, what are the odds DeCourcy and his colleagues would still manage to find fault?

10.14.16

Tim Tebow Fought Keith Law (And Keith Law Won)

Posted in Baseball, Gridiron at 7:48 pm by

Mets prospect / Heisman winner / American’s eldest virgin Tim Tebow is currently showcasing his (dubious) skill-set for the Arizona Fall League’s Scottsdale Scorpions and ESPN baseball columnist Keith Law, perhaps echoing the sentiments of longtime CSTB contributor The Randy L., declares, “chasing celebrities is no way to run a player-development department, an organization or a league.”

Tebow the baseball player is not a baseball player; he’s a washed-up quarterback who has size and nothing else. His swing is long, and he wields the bat like someone who hasn’t played the sport in more than a decade, which he hasn’t. He can’t catch up to 90 mph, which is well below the major league average for a fastball, and was cutting through fastballs in the zone on Wednesday night. He rolled over twice on fastballs, which is something you generally see professional hitters do only on off-speed stuff, and he showed below-average running speed. In left field, his routes look like those of a wide receiver, although he managed to eventually make his way around to a fly ball in left.

But other than that, he’s doing just fine!

10.10.16

THE F WORD. THE P WORD. THE A WORD. THE B WORD.

Posted in Hip Hop, non-sporting journalism, politics at 11:45 pm by

10.09.16

History’s Most Questionable eBay Auctions, Pt. XX

Posted in politics, record collector disease, Rock Und Roll, The Marketplace at 3:51 pm by

Not quite the way I envisioned the Bat Shit label making a comeback, but hey, whatever it takes.

10.06.16

Joe Buck’s So Vain, He Probably Thinks This Post’s About Him (And It Is)

Posted in Baseball, Gridiron, Sports TV at 6:19 pm by

How desperate am I to change the subject from something — anything! — other than Madison Bumgarner’s mastery of the New York Mets (and Jeurys Familia’s continued fallibility in the postseason)? Desperate enough to lobby for public sympathy for JOE FUCKING BUCK.

Fox Sports’ primary baseball and football voice has a new book hitting the shelves, “Artie Lange Ruined My Life” “Lucky Bastard: My Life, My Dad, And The Things I’m Not Allowed To Say On TV,” and in excerpts quoted by the New York Post’s Zach Braziller, Buck admits the paralyzed vocal cord he suffered in 2011 was caused an addiction to hair plugs.


“Broadcasting is a brutal, often unfair business, where looks are valued more than skill,” he wrote. “I was worried that if I lost my hair, I would lose my job.

“OK, that’s bulls—. It was vanity. Pure vanity. I just told myself I was doing it for TV.”

A few weeks before the 2011 baseball season, Buck had his eighth hair replacement procedure. When he woke up from the anesthesia, he couldn’t speak. Buck thinks a nerve in his vocal chord was damaged when a restraint used during the hair operation got jostled.

He was treated by a Harvard laryngeal surgery expert who also has worked with Adele, but Buck lied to everyone about how the impairment happened.

“I was too scared and embarrassed to tell them the truth,” wrote Buck, who hasn’t had hair plugs since. “But I’m doing it now.”

10.05.16

CBC : Jays Fans Not Merely Drunk, But Racist, Too

Posted in Baseball, Mob Behavior, Racism Corner at 8:09 pm by

“Do the Toronto Blue Jays have the most unruly, drunken fans in baseball?” asked the Toronto Star some 3 years ago, and in the wake of Orioles Hyun Soo Kim narrowly avoiding a tossed beer can during last night’s 5-2, 11 inning AL Wild Card defeat at the Rogers Centre, the CBC’s Jamie Strashin suggests the hosts’ patrons aren’t merely uncouth, but racist to boot.

There were again numerous fights at last night’s game (I witnessed two from my seat along the first-base line) and a beer can may not have been the only thing hurled from the crowd. There were reports of racial slurs lobbed at Orioles outfielders Jones, an African-American, and Kim, who hails from South Korea.

CBC Sports reporter Scott Regehr was at the game and says Orioles first-base coach Wayne Kirby, a heavyset black man, got a rough ride from four 20-somethings decked out in Blue Jays garb sitting near him.

“They were yelling at him to go get some more fried chicken,” Regehr says.

10.03.16

Dubs’ West : An Old Hand At Sitting Out The Anthem

Posted in Basketball, politics at 5:27 pm by

While Niners backup QB Colin Kaepernick has touched off a national debate and countless similar gestures of protest with his highly publicized refusal to stand for the pregame playing of “The Star Spangled Banner”, 14-year NBA veteran David West has been engaging in his own quiet protest for a half decade. Speaking with The Undefeated’s Marc J. Spears, West explains his decision to stand a few feet behind his Warriors teammates is entirely deliberate.

“What about education? What about infant mortality? How about how we die younger and our babies die sooner?” power forward West told The Undefeated after the Warriors’ 97-93 preseason loss to the Toronto Raptors in Vancouver, British Columbia. “We die. [Black men] have the shortest life expectancy. C’mon, man. The health care system? There are so many [issues]. It’s like, whatever …

“I can’t start talking about civic issues. I can’t start talking about civility and being a citizen if m—–f—— don’t even think I’m a human being. How can you talk about progress and how humans interrelate with one another when you don’t even recognize our humanity? We got to somehow get that straight first so we’re on the same playing field. And that’s how I feel. There is just a lot of stuff, man.”

“What (Kaepernick) is doing is great, but I think it’s going to pass, too,” West said. “I’m not as optimistic about everything as everyone always seems to be. I don’t wear it on my sleeve like I used to. I’ve gotten older and a little bit more mature in terms of my thinking. But I understand human rights issues…until you handle humanity, how do you get to talking about mass incarceration? How do you get to talk about our undereducated kids? How do we get to the health care system? How do we get to all that and you don’t even think I’m a human?”

09.27.16

Zimmerman On TMZ’s Sickening Role In The Derrick Rose Defense

Posted in Basketball, The Law at 10:12 pm by

With the opening of New York Knicks training camp yesterday, team president Phil Jackson assures us that Derrick Rose has lost no sleep over an upcoming civil trial for rape in Los Angeles. And why should we worry, what with the nation’s most highly trafficked gossip site running interference? As The Daily Beast’s Amy Zimmerman writes, “instead of addressing the issue of consent at the heart of this case, Rose’s lawyers have chosen to go the TMZ route by favoring flashy accusations and retro victim-blaming.”

In a Sept. 12 missive from the bowels of the 30-mile zone, headlined “Derrick Rose to Rape Accuser: You’re No Prude You Hooked Up With Nick Young,” the website essentially does Rose’s slut-shaming dirty work for him. TMZ explains that Rose’s accuser, referred to as Jane Doe, “Claims she was traumatized by the alleged gang rape because she’s ‘prudish’ and sexually inexperienced. Rose’s team says that’s a big fat lie… and they have a text referring to fellow NBA guard Nick Young to prove it.” The gossip site goes on to publish texts from Jane Doe, implying that Doe engaged in a sexual relationship with Young. “The docs also claim Jane Doe interacted with lots of celebs and had sexual relationships with at least 2 NBA players other than Rose,” TMZ concludes, “bringing a major question about her credibility into play.”

Much like Donald Trump Jr.’s Skittles meme, it’s hard to say what’s more immediately revolting: the outdated beliefs behind this article or the logical fallacies contained within it. TMZ seems to be working under the assumption that simply by describing Rose’s attempts to discredit his abuser, sans rebuttal or commentary, it’s doing its job. The site fails to address the moral reprehensibility of this type of smear campaign, or cop to its role in perpetuating it.

09.25.16

FL Pol : My Patriotism’s So Intense, I’m Gonna Exploit Jose Fernandez’ Death

Posted in Baseball, politics at 1:06 pm by

Just a wild guess — of all the things life in the USA represented to Jose Fernandez, sadly no longer here to answer this ridiculous question — the opportunity to stand up and salute the American flag might not have been in the top 5.

09.23.16

Yet Another All-Important Message From The Entertainment Division Of Cumbucket Media : Coming November 4, Dark Blue’s ‘Start Of The World’ (12XU)

Posted in 12XU, Internal Affairs, record collector disease, Rock Und Roll at 12:03 pm by

db_sotw_f1_web-copy

Dark Blue follow up their debut LP, ‘Pure Reality’ (Jade Tree), with ‘Start Of The World’ (12XU) – a soundtrack of a decaying United States. Each song drips with the realities of atrocities happening all around us ; John Sharkey III (Vocals, Guitar) pushes Dark Blue far beyond the post-punk meets oi sound they perfected on their earlier releases, and adds elements of brit-pop and shoegaze. Recorded by Jeff Zeigler (Kurt Vile, Nothing), ‘Start Of The World’ is a pop album that makes no apologies.

Dark Blue.  photo by Autumn Spadaro
Dark Blue. photo by Autumn Spadaro

Boot stomping opener “Union of Buffoons,” sets the political tone for this album with an anthem for workers’ rights. Sharkey’s biting lyrics: “You can’t fight this, you can’t win…screw you once, they’ll screw you twice,” is a reference to human expendability in the face of deregulation and the stagnancy of labor rights. “Never Wanted to Hurt You” is a pop song in the highest order with guts and an undeniable chorus that would make Noel Gallagher jealous even at his most jaded.

The 50′s doo-woop and surf rock sound of “Bombs on the Beach” initially feels like a left turn for the band, evoking a playful innocence against a sunny backdrop. But the lyrics prove this is truly a Dark Blue song, tearing through any cheerfulness as jarring and abrupt as words can be to describe the reality of dropping missiles on a beach of unsuspecting Palestinian children. Sharkey’s voice is heavy with the despair of survivor’s guilt: “Now I’m holding my baby’s hand, as he lies bleeding to death in the sand.” This is another pointed song full of sentiment as much as it is an impassioned call for accountability for the crimes against humanity in the Gaza Strip.

While this album shows off new and varying degrees of Sharkey’s vocal intensity, Andrew Mackie Nelson (Bass, Ceremony) and Michael Sneeriger (Drums, Strand of Oaks) shine, guiding the songs in ways other releases haven’t shown before . Tracks such as “Be Gone Everyone” and “Western Front” underscore just how comfortable the band has gotten.

‘Start Of The World’ is the kind of record that Dark Blue has always promised: a collection of smart, fully realized songs that tell real stories. With the world falling apart around us, Dark Blue continues to give voice to neglected perspectives, many unnerving but all necessary to hear. We need a defiant record like this to remind us that just as there was start to all of this destruction, there can also be an end. – Sean Gray.

Preorder here.