Sunday, December 12, 2010

Nobody like Castle St.

Its been a rough few days for the HWS community. I wont go into detail, but my heart goes out to them.  This has led me to re-enforce my love toward my 4 best friends in the world.  I just want to say, to all who did not live with me you are still in my heart and mind, but this is just specific to my housemates. Barto, Pino, Shane and Danica, I love you guys.  Since day one, Barto and I have been roommates. Danica and Shane soon followed.  Pino was always a friend of mine, but he became my rock during a tough year after I came home from abroad.  I can not describe enough how much I love these people and how much they mean to me.  We have been through thick and thin over the last four years, and I know we will make it a life time.  These guys and girl are the best people i know and the best friends any person could have asked for.  I am so thankful and happy that we stay in contact constantly and see each other as much as possible.  You guys mean the world to me and I hope in tough times we pick each other up and in good times we drag each other along.

Friday, December 3, 2010

I root Lebron

Ok so here is a random rant about Lebron James, but I think after last night this is a relevant rant.

I want to clearly state I still like Lebron James.  He is still one of the best and most exciting player in the NBA, maybe minus Kobe, Durant and Carmello.  So if you liked him before he left Cleveland you should still like him.  My argument is against the Cavs.  Yeah that's right, I am defending Lebron, but let me explain.

First I do not agree with how Lebron went about making his decision.  It should have never been aired on TV like that, all the teams should have been notified before the national announcement, and  no body besides the teams, and James should have profited from the whole ordeal.

I blame media and some what Lebron for not having better sense but honestly Lebron is not a bad person.  He has been nothing but a great role model (besides this thing) his entire NBA career.

So who do I blame for this whole mess...?  The Cavaliers!

Lets go over this.  Lebron James was the face and franchise of the Cavaliers for seven seasons.  That means the Cavs office had 7 years to build a championship caliber team around Lebron.  What did they do, they pathetically tried and miserably failed. They brought in veterans like shaq, didnt work.  They thought their point guards (Mo Williams), was better then he really was.  Varajeo just gets in the way, and Ilgausks was the only player who has been any sort of success besides Lebron from the Cavs and now he isn't even there.  Bottom line, the Cavs office did a terrrible job of making a championship team!

You might say well lebron quit during some games.  Fine you can say that but he is still going to make any team better no matter if he plays at 50%.  He is better then any player even when he is playing at 50%, he is just that good.  Also, if lebron isn't playing well, why didn't his teammates pick him up and shine.  Well as i previously stated, they couldn't because they really were not a good team.  They had some players, play key roles at times, but not on a consistent basis and it proved come play off time.  When the Celtics Ray Allen has a down game, KG and Pierce pick him up and Vice Versa.  Same with the lakers, if Kobe isn't playing well then Gasol, Odom, Fisher, or any number of their players step up.  A truly good team has players that can shine in moments of hardship.

You might argue that lebron was making too much money for the Cavs to be able to sign a high end player to work with Lebron.  Well if they recruited better, they could have the same deal as Miami where Lebron took a pay cut! so throw that out...

The Fans say that lebron quit on them, that's total BS! He moved on with his life because he wants to win.  He was never going to win with the Cavs and that was clear last night.  Minus lebron, the Cavs have a similar team they had last year.  What did they do against Lebron last night...look stupid? maybe.  But they got blown out by lebron and company, who yet again proved why he is so good.

So cavs fans, stop crying! Stop bitching at lebron.  The Cavs messed up.  Turn your hate toward your team and not a single player.  Its always easy to blame the most popular and best, because they are an easy target, but you are just going to fuel the fire.  Why don't you think progressively and truly figure out it starts with the front office and how they deal with their star player.  Cleary they didn't deal with it very well.

I hope Lebron wins championship.  I don't agree with his grand announcement, but I don't blame him for leaving. How can you blame him? Kobe had players bought for him....Allen, KG, Pierce were put together, Jordan, Rodman and Pippen were put together...why cant the Heat take Lebron, Wade, and Bosh and put them together! yeah i understand they were all free agents and this is the first time something like this has ever happened, but i say its easy to point fingers.  NBA move on with your life, Cavs look for a new prospect and build your team from scratch.  Time to move on!

I root Lebron

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

No Shave November

Now that November is over, my beard has grown for a full 30 days.  I started on October 31st with a clean shaven face, and now I have as you can see a pretty bushy beard.  I am not sure what I am going to  do after this.  I am thinking that I will keep growing it and turn it into a finals beard...kind of like a playoff beard but for my last 2 1/2 weeks of classes and finals.  Also I have little time now to play around with my facial hair styles so the best i will do now is just trim it up to make it a little more clean but still keep it long and growing.  Here is the final product:

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Why I am thankful...

Today is a day of thanks.  I am thankful for all my friends and family who have made me the person I am today and have helped me succeed in my life.

I am thankful for my friends from home.  Jack, Mike, Pat, Kail, Ed, Brian, Danny, Jess and Alyssa.  We all grew up together, or spent our high school years together.  I am so thankful that we have still stayed friends throughout all our separate journeys through college and beyond.  Thank you guys and girls for always being there when it counted. 

I am thankful for my friends from HWS.  Pino, Barto, Shane, Rick, Tyler, Sam, Danica, Marie, Zinnia, Julianne, Alex, Kate, Zosia, Elena and Heather.  Thank you guys for making the last four years of my life, the best years of my life.  All the trips to Heavy’s, Sideshow, Red Brick and more will always be remembered and cherished.  All the Potter 3 shenanigans where it began and all the shenanigans where we ended at Castle St., 202 Pultney, the Yellow House and the apartments along main.  Thank you guys and girls for making it the best!

Thank you all the MUP’s and my roommates John, Jordan and Steve.  This first semester has been a great experience and I only expect good times in the future!  Thank you!

Finally, I have to thank my parents and siblings.  Without my family I would not be where I am today.  My brother and sister have become closer to me every day as I have grown up and no one will be as supportive and caring as Josh and Jennie. Mom and dad you have given me everything and if it was not for you I would certainly not be where I am today.  Thank you for supporting me in everything I have ever done, and expecting me to succeed in all my endeavors.  I love you guys so much, and I am soo thankful I have the best parents in the world! 

Thank you everybody for making my life the best it can be and I hope I can help make your lives just as great.  Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Friday, November 12, 2010

My usual style

So I have grown my beard back to about the length i normally try to keep it. This is what I like the most, and this is how most of my friends know how I look. I am participating in no shave november or "novembeard" so I wont be trimming this for another 18 days.  That also includes thanksgiving.  I will put up another pic in a week or so and then I will post one last pic of my beard at the end of the month and right before I trim, shave or even keep it if I really like it ha.  Hope you enjoy:

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Manchester Derby

This is a photo from the The Sun (UK paper) from the Manchester Derby yesterday.  Tevez and Ferdinand getting to know each other....

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Where is America Headed?

Ok well its not a surprise how many seats the Dems lost last night.  But it is people like Rand Paul that make me worry for the future of our country.  I mean honestly, he said, "There are no rich, there are no middle class, there are no poor." then five seconds later he says, "we all work for rich people, or we sell stuff to rich people..." So basically he just went back on what he said.  Additionally, he is all about "fiscal conservatism," where tax breaks are the main ideology.  I mean people love tax breaks but we need taxes to lower our deficit.  Additionally, he said he wants less government and government can not produce jobs.  Well if Rand Paul read a history book, he would see that FDR (maybe one of the greatest or at least innovative Presidents of all time) created thousands of jobs in order to spur the economy in the worst Depression ever!  So please, i really hope his extreme ideology does not carry over into congress.  Check out the videos and see what i am talking about....

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Clean Shaven

Havent been keeping up lately but this entry isnt going to be much anyway.  So last was a big Halloween party and I dressed up as New Jersey, spiked hair, lots of cologne, button down club shirt, lots of fist pumping and of course my state ID ha.  Although I was jaggerbombing and fist pumping all night, I did shave my face.  So keeping up with my new theme of changing my facial hair style every few weeks, here is my clean cut look:

Now this is not my personal favorite and i have only been clean shaven about 5 times in the past 2 years.  Mostly for job interviews (bc i was always "recommended" to shave for internship interview etc)...any way so i am clean shaven for now.  I will not keep this bc i think I look like a 17 year old. Also my face feels so weird without any hair.  Not sure what I will sport next, but "No Shave November" is coming up so maybe ill just go grizzly for the month? No shave at all...Or I heard about just sporting a mustache for a while.  We will see.  Ill post new pics though when I have progress on my new facial hair style.

Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The end of the NFL...

I think this weekend marked the starting point of the finish of the NFL.  Most I’m sure would not agree with what I am saying but I’ll try to argue my point to the best of my ability.  First let me say I love the NFL.  Football is a great sport and it’s hard not to like it.  Also, as an American I think it has surpassed Baseball as our more recent American Past time because MLB has been living under a cloud of steroids for the past 20 years and honestly people are sick of it.  Furthermore, I believe the NFL makes more money than the MLB, has a larger fan bases and plays less games a year so more people anticipate.  Baseball is a great sport, and I love baseball almost as much as football, but I think football has eclipsed baseball in numerous ways.

Why do I think the sport is dying? Well mostly because it’s a dangerous sport.  First let’s start with the human athlete.  Over the past 100 years, innovation and technology has made things more efficient, longer lasting, bigger or smaller (depending on what you discuss) and overall better (most things).  The same has happened with athletes.  Today you won’t find a serious athlete who is not in the gym or the practice field trying to get bigger stronger and faster (that’s what my trainers used to preach, and I think it is true).  With that said every major athlete is going to be on a hardcore diet with a hardcore lifting and conditioning program to make sure they are better than the next person.  So just within the last 20 years I would say from Emmitt Smith to Adrian Peterson, One might be stronger than the other.  Raw talent wise they might be the same but honestly imagine Adrian Peterson 20 years ago.  Would he not run past everybody?! If that’s not a great example then let’s go back 50 years.  Would the best running back then be better than the best running back now? I doubt it.  Why? Because today athletes are bigger stronger and faster then they have ever been.  It’s just part of the technology and innovation crazed society.

Now with that said, with bigger stronger athletes come faster players and harder hits.  People fly out of nowhere to come knock people out.  Kick off Units cruise down the field at top speed just to knock out the player with the ball.  This weekend a tragic play occurred on such a play when a young man from Rutgers became paralyzed from the neck down after colliding with the ball carrier.  No matter what it is too obvious that the game has been stepped up a notch from years ago.  So many concussions, so many injuries, and players are giving it 100% at all times.  Not a formula for safety.

There is another aspect which I blame on all parties and that is the lack of teaching.  Players don’t tackle anymore.  They try to either knock you out, or they trip you up.  Rarely in games is there a good tackle.  No one teaches good tackling anymore.  The only sport worth noting here is Rugby.  Go to a rugby game, or watch a match on TV.  They don’t even where pads, but I am willing to bet they have fewer injuries.  Why!? Because they tackle properly. I am not saying people don’t get hurt ever or knocked out, but the intent to injury is nullified by a good education on tackling and by a good culture of not trying to go head first into someone else’s head.  Tackling needs to be re taught to the kids and college athletes, and maybe injuries will go down.

On to the NFL.  So the NFL is dying because of these reasons plus all the sanctions/penalties that the NFL is implementing.  First it started with the horse collar.  Fine, maybe a good call.  Then Helmet to helmet.  Now essentially you can hit anyone hard! I’m not saying it’s ridiculous, but for god sake it’s ridiculous!  I mean how are linebackers and DE's supposed to play.  Are they supposed to be worried how hard they are going to hit a running back with 4.3 speeds?  No I don’t think that is going to happen.  If you are going to make a play, you are going to make it!  I understand that people are getting hurt, but sacrificing the integrity of the game will cost the NFL.  Soon they are going to replace pads with flags, and it will be flag football, with limited touch! Yeah that could happen.

Here are some ideas that might be able to keep the game the same, but add safety features. How about making better helmets.  We might not be able to cure cancer yet, but don’t you think we have the technology to make a good helmet?????!!!!!! I would hope so.  Next how about better mouth guards.  I was always preached too by my hockey coaches to wear your mouth guard for two reasons: 1) so you don’t bite your tongue off and jam your teeth together and 2) because it prevents concussions because it limits the shock.  I understand if you get the daylights knocked out of you your mouth guard might not do anything but still.  In addition, how about changing the surface of the field.  My roommates keep saying this but instead of laying the turf with concrete, how about a layer of rubber, concrete, rubber and maybe something a little softer of concrete so when a body is thrown to the ground, you are not falling on hard grass.  I know it sounds a little out there, but again with today’s innovation it should be possible.

Overall it seems like the dark cloud from baseball and steroids is moving over to the NFL and hard hits.  The NFL is in for some real trouble if they keep adding sanctions and penalties for hitting.  That’s part of the game, and if the NFL keeps its actions up, kids/fans will get less interested, which will create less football athletes and in 30 years, the NFL will be dried up like a desert.  I don’t see any other way it can be turned around.  All I know is come Sunday if I see flags and hear about suspensions for hits that might be hard, but could have been harder or something along those lines, I think I will be proving my point.  Also, if come Sunday more injuries occur, my point will also be proven.  Either or the NFL better get its umbrella because a storms' a comin.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

God Damn Yankees

Well we have had three disappointing starts.  CC was not lights out, Hughes was ok but not great, plus our bullpen and batlessness syndrome did not help and then last night, Pettitte made one mistake and that was enough, plus again batlessness syndrome.  So basically it’s been a disappoint series so far.  I knew it was going to be a test but I figured we would have put up a little more of a fight than we have thus far.

The game 1 comeback was awesome and I figured taking 1 of 2 from Texas at Texas was pretty good.  In addition, i figured that might fuel the team to win game 2.  It did not.  In fact, it almost seemed like they thought they could do it again in Game 2 and when they did not, it was not a great feeling.  Again though, taking 1 of 2 on the road is a pretty good thing.

Game 3 was going to be a battle.  Anytime you face cliff lee you know it is going to be a battle.  Pettitte pitched really well, but gave up 2 runs of 1 hit, and it was a HR to Hamilton.  I mean it wasn’t a terrible pitch; Hamilton just reached out and got it.  And that was the game.  The Yankees bats were quite, very quiet, and our bullpen really had a chance to put the game in a comeback situation, but it gave up SIX RUNS IN THE 9th! Are you kidding me! That’s a great way to lose a game.  Our bullpen has actually been doing well up until the last two games, but it looks like we are back to normal.  Let me rephrase that a little.  Kerry Wood has been doing very well.  Mariano Rivera is the best.  It’s the rest that really just can’t do it.  It’s too bad, because if we were down only 2 runs going into the bottom of the ninth with a young reliever coming into the game (or it could have been a somewhat tired cliff lee again if the inning wasn’t so long) we could have had an opportunity.  But once you give up the third run and maybe the fourth run, the chances of comeback are cut in half and then a fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth run, there is no chance for a comeback.
I just hope tonight Burnett (if he even does pitch, last minute Girardi could technically put CC in) pitches well.  I feel like even though he has not had a good year, and has technically been benched this first part of the playoffs; he will have some desire and fire in his mind and throw a great game.  That’s just what I would like to see.  If we lose tonight series is over.  Maybe we win one more at home but I don’t think we will win two at Texas.  Just not going to happen.

On another note, if people did not notice, the cubs hired their interim manager for a 2 year deal.  What does that do to Girardi now?  The Yankees haven’t offered him an extension and the rumors were Girardi was most likely going to go to the cubs if the Yanks didn’t offer him anything.  Looks like the tables have turned.

Monday, October 18, 2010

changin up...

Ok so this weekend, a friend of mine and his roommates were throwing a country party, and keeping that in mind, I decided to shave my face accordingly.  That is right...I will post three pictures of my awesome facial hair...that is correct I said AWESOME!...and you can be the judge.

But this has led me to something more than just a facial configuration for a party.  Instead I think I will be shaving every 2 weeks and creating new facial hair styles every so often.  The only reason I cant do it every week is because my hair doesn't grow that fast or that thick.  As you will see my handlebar mustache is not as thick and lovely as the true supporters of such look.  Instead it was a sample of what is to come ha.  enjoy...

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Progressive thinking in sports! LET'S GO!

Ok so first I know I'm a little late on the subject but the Michigan game this weekend was a disappointment but not surprise to me.  Honestly has Michigan played a worthy opponent besides MSU? I argue no.  Basically Uconn flopped and has had a mediocre season, Umass gave us trouble which immediately points to flaws in our defense, Notre Dame was a win only because the their starting QB was knocked out but also they have had a less than impressive year, and Indiana was a shoot out which in my mind says they were even opponents.  O yeah and bowling green, well thank god we pulled away.  Anyway, out true light showed finally.  Robinson was held to less than par numbers and our Defense got out played.  I don't necessarily put all the blame on one person but here is my thinking: 1) it seemed like Robinson was a lot more conservative in his running game and I think that is because Rich Rod was afraid if he ran the ball like he has, he would get injured because MSU had a legitimate defense, 2) I think our defense actually showed promise at times, and they did actually get a few stops so I was happy about that, 3) Denard made poor throws, just no excuses for it.  This game is going to lead to probably a few more losses in the Big 10.  I just don't see how we can beat Ohio State, Iowa and Wisconsin.  All very good teams and they have played legit teams and won and they have played crappy teams and blown them all out.  We have done neither!

So I'm sure this will lead to discussions about Rich Rod's job future but I think the UM AD should not fire Rich Rod.  I say this because he has only been there three years, and if he yanked him at the end of the season than the next coach is going to have to start from scratch and UM will have another three straight disappointing seasons.  The problem with all of this is basic: Rich Rod came in with a complete overhaul of the system, further away from traditional Michigan football than it has ever been, and so new players and personnel had to be brought in and it takes time for results to show when there is such a drastic change.  Yeah he has had three years, BUT his first recruiting class is juniors!  He really has not had enough time to implement the type of team he wants.

On the flip side, is his system going to even work in Big 10 football.  Rich Rod has a very different system than most Big 10 schools.  Michigan is not a big powerful team anymore, but now they are fast spread offense players.  No more huge backs, instead you have a combination of small backs that barely get used.  No professional QB, instead Denard Robinson.  It’s completely different from the normal flow that I am not sure if will be able to hold up against Big 10 football.  Again though, I think Rodriguez needs more time. 

Ok on another note, let’s go USA soccer!  They drew with Poland and are playing Colombia as I write this.  Unfortunately was unable to see the Poland game, and am unable to see tonight's game.  Sucks I know, but I rep'd my USA Onyewu Jersey today so shout out to America!

Ok finally, I just saw this article on and thought it was awesome but at the same time not surprising.  Basically the article was written from an interview with ESPN the magazine that states a former sports agent paid players he was trying to recruit while they were in college.  NOT A SHOCKER!

What is shocking is all of a sudden within the last few years the NCAA is trying to crack down on this and clearly LOSING! Honestly it’s like steroids in Pro sports.  or illegal drugs in America.  No matter what people try to do to prevent people from taking money from agents, using steroids in Pro sports, or smoking weed illegally, it’s going to happen! What the NCAA as well as other associations should figure out is that maybe players should make money in college. College is expensive FYI! And these players make the school Millions of dollars a year; let them sell their jerseys, sell autographed things...etc.  Don't let them have a salary per se, but let up on the damn rules.  Clearly they are not working! If a Heisman trophy winner got caught FIVE years after he was in college, imagine how much else the NCAA has missed or let go.  SCARY! It’s time for an overhaul of the system and maybe a more progressive approach instead of the rudimentary crap they have been preaching over the past 40 years.


Friday, October 8, 2010

Damn Yankees

Well over the past two days, the baseball world has had some exciting games. First, Texas looks good! I am surprised they are beating up on Tampa because Tampa has post season experience and they had a great year.  Maybe they slowed down at the end of the season and their momentum has not carried over to the post season.  The phillies are the team to beat.  There are no words to describe Halladay's no-hitter, but congrats to him.  I am still rooting against the phillies but they look very strong.  Didn't see the giants game last night, by Lincecum is one of the best pitchers in the majors and  a 1-0 victory and 14 strikeouts is a normal outing for the young man.  Scary i know. 

Ok now on to the good stuff.  How about those Yankees!? awesome! they are basically going to stretch their pitching out as much as they can because their bullpen has been shaky throughout the year minus the three guys they are starting (CC, Pettite and Hughes).  I worry most about Hughes because he has the least experience but if he pitches well, he is one of the best pitchers in baseball i would argue.  He did have 18 wins this season and only 8 loses so is definitely an well established pitcher.  CC was supposed to win and the Yankees pulled off a great come from behind win on Wednesday night but last night really showed me some old school Yankees.  Pettite who was a big question mark because he missed a few months due to a groin injury, and he did try to come back but his injury popped back up and people though he was done for the rest of the year.  A lot of people thought if pettite was not available for the playoffs the Yankees would lose.  Well pettite is certainly back and he is very necessary.  last night he was in old and peak from, and the Yankees looked like they were back in 1996 as the under dogs beating up on a team that was expected to be better than them.  Pettite pitched 7 great innings only giving up 2 runs and basically gave the ball to Kerry wood who looked great and than Marian Rivera closed the game out as he normally does.  It was a great game.  Not to mention their batting has been doing well. 

Its been a great series so far and cant wait for more.  hopefully the Yanks win and keep this momentum going.  LETS GO!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Expanded Horizion trip to Philly.....and Camden

So last week my class went on a five day field trip to Philadelphia, and a little excursion to Camden.  The purpose of our trip was two fold: 1) was to see some of Philadelphia's planning offices and companies and 2) was to bond with my fellow class mates.  Both were accomplished.

Philly is a cool city.  Planning wise it is very simple with the downtown and most of the surrounding city planned in a grid like pattern.  William Penn originally planned the city on a grid format and it has kept its general shape.  Overall, the population has declined steadily over the past 20 years or so going from 2.5million to 1.5million.  What has occurred through this population loss if many abandoned homes and areas, with high crime and poverty.  The weird part about their population loss and abandonment of homes and areas in the outer parts of the city is the core of the cite has grown.  I forget the numbers, but the core city has seen a boom in growth, and you can see a lot of condos and apartments being built or going up for sale.  This seems like a good thing, especially because the core city is where a city should try to attract people.  I think the problem with many cities, especially in today's urban sprawl, is too many people move out to the core of the city to gain amenities like lawns, cars (and driveways), garages etc... But then what ends up happening as has happened in Philly, is people either move out and cant fill their homes, or the economy tanks and more people do not want to move further away from the city but closer to the city so they can spend less on travel.  Now Philly is having this boom in their downtown area and it is creating some problems, especially congestion problems.  Some other interesting aspects of Philly was its waterfront.  Route I-95 that runs from Maine to Florida, runs along the Delaware river and basically blocks off most of the water front from the view of the public.  It is too bad because they said they have been trying to attract people through the water front and they are having little success.

Furthermore, two firms that I visited, HNTB Transportation and Post Green, were really cool companies.  HNTB is mainly an infrastructure engineering company that has developed some of the most famous bridges in America.  Additionally they are the ones who are working on the High Speed Rail program.  They were the real deal and sounded like an awesome company.  I thought they would be hard to top but Post Green was pretty awesome.  Post Green is an architecture firm that has been building sustainable houses for as little money as possible.  Their claim to fame is the 100k house.  This means that they uses 100-120 thousands dollars or less to pay for the materials to build the house.  Additionally, the houses are LEED Platinum and are basically as green as it can get.  They do not look aesthetically pleasing to the people who live in the area, but they seem popular with many young people and they certainly have the right ideas as to how a house should be built.

Aside from all the planning stuff i did on the trip, there was a social component, and a rather large one.  Or at least we made it a large one ha.  Anyway basically every night we had free we went out .  We had many stories that i will not share on a public forum, but the basic conclusion we all became a lot closer and had a great time.  O and some of us went to Camden, at 11pm at night.  Not the best idea we have ever had, but some of my friends really wanted to go, so we took a cab over the BF bridge and before we knew it we were wondering the streets of downtown Camden.  Not much going on in Camden, and after asking a police officer where the closest bar was, we were advised to leave because we were a "red flag."  Yeah, again not the smartest idea we had, but it was a good story for the rest of the trip.

Overall great time and good first month of the program.  I cant wait for the rest of the year.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Food for thought

Hey just read this article and completley agree with it...not because i smoke pot but becasue we can use our resources on better issues.  This is progressive thinking and I think the same way...

Monday, September 27, 2010

Arabian Dream

Saw this article in the NYtimes yesterday regarding a utopian city being constructed in the middle east.  This is no regular utopian society but it is completely sustainable.  Very cool idea, although like most Utopian societies it seems it will only cater to the people who can afford to live there.  Looks cool though...

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Time to protect yourself...

As I predicted last week or two weeks ago, Denard Robinson is going to get hurt if is running every 2 out of three plays.  Well sure enough he has been injured, and injured enough he probably will not play the rest of the game today.  Although I am not at the game this week (I am following it on TV), it was something that could have been avoided especially against a weak opponent such as Bowling Green.  I just hope its not a serious injury.  it seemed like he just banged his knee hard on the ground. It did not seem like he twisted or tore anything which is good, but we will probably find out what is wrong within the next few hours of day or so.  Hope Michigan wins! GO BLUE!

Also on another note, awesome win today for both Manchester City and West Brom Albion.  Both teams beat the top two teams in the premier league.  Man City won 1-0 (i didnt see the game) and West Brom won 3-2 in a thrilling five goal second half (i did watch the game). 

Friday, September 24, 2010

Colbert at his best...

I know i haven't been updating much lately but I just came across this article/video of Stephen Colbert testifying before a subcommittee of congress regarding migrant workers working on farms. It is absolutely hilarious. Also if you look at the Congress members who are sitting on the sub committee you will notice they do not seem to happy or attentive when he speaks. One congresswoman or someone on the panel is seen using their cell phone while Colbert is speaking. Take a look and read the article it is fantastic!

Colbert's Video

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Back to school, back to school

So the first two weeks of grad school are just about finished and so far it has been a great experience. I am taking four classes, statistics, economics planning law and policy and planning theory. Each class is a building block to future classes that i will have to and want to talk before i get my degree. With that said, some of these classes are not easy.

My statistics class is no walk in the park but then again, unless it comes natural to you I don't know anyone would say they would enjoy stats class. If I keep up with the readings, see my teacher during his office hours, and pay attention in class (which i always do) I think i will be fine.

My econ class is simple. I took one economics class in college, so this is kind of a refresher class but at the same time this is a class that i am trying to succeed in because in college econ was tough and i took it pass fail. Although its a refresher some concepts will be difficult to understand and wrap my head around. If i stay persistent like my stats class i should do fine.

My law class is my toughest class. It just has a lot of reading and writing involved and it will certainly take a lot of time and effort to do well in the class. I think it is a very interesting and especially important class for my future. I will be learning about many of the main law cases and zoning policies regarding urban planning. Additionally, i will be learning how to write memos, briefs and other planning related plans. It will probably be my most important class to take away from this semester, but stats and econ will also be important.

Finally, my theory classes seems the most enjoyable because a lot of the readings from class i have looked into and know i am going to enjoy. So far the class has not gotten too in depth about planning theory but a few early readings have been enjoyable and interesting. The most interesting reading so far was from Kevin Lynch's book An Urban World. In the chapter "The Pattern of the Metropolis," he points out five different type of patterns of cities and makes sure that each city has a few characteristics that are specifically important to the functionality of cities (accessibility, density, organization, grain, circulation, and services). All are important parts of a functional and successful city.

Overall, school is a lot of work but it has many perks and has been a good time.

Its been tough to keep up with my blog but as i figure out how to manage my time to the best ability, i will be able to write more.

Sunday, September 12, 2010


Yesterday I watched the Michigan game and it was awesome! There is only one man to really talk about and he doesn't even tie his shoes. Yes, Denard Robinson might be one of the most fun athletes and quarterbacks to watch in college football right now, and although I might have a bias towards him, I think my statement has some truth to it. The man has rushed for over 500 yards and passed for over 500 yards in just two games. Maybe people though it was a fluke last week because of their weaker opponent of UConn, but this week I think he proved all his critics wrong. I do have to say I have some concerns (I will address these in a minute), but he is one great athlete to accomplish numbers like this. Yes, Notre Dame did lose their starting quarterback for basically the first half, but depth is part of the game and it showed that the backup quarterbacks for Notre Dame were not ready.

Although Robinson had a great two games, I have a few concerns that might come up alter in the season when Michigan starts its Big 10 battles. First, I dont think his body will be able to take the beatings all season long. Unlike many other quarterbacks, Robinson does get hit a lot after his runs. They are not always the hardest hits, but after a while I think they will take a toll on his body. I am also worried that one day he is going to get hit so hard he wont be playing for a few games. Another concern is his conditioning. He seems like a stellar athlete and I know he runs track but can he keep this energy and stamina up for the entire season? I am not sure and it will be a great achievement if he can (as long as he is healthy as well) but its just human nature to begin to tire at least 3/4 way through the season. Finally, I am still not convinced Michigan football has turned around. Although the last two games were great wins, if a team somehow figures out how to stop Robinson's feet, his throwing game was a little more shaky yesterday which shows me hes not a complete quarterback yet. Also Michigan's secondary yesterday was burned three times, and could have been worse if Christ played all game. I am specifically recalling when ND's tight end beet everybody up the field for a 91 yard touch down. The safety's and corners can just stop running when the player they are guarding keeps running. So clearly there is a lot of work to be done in Michigan's pass defense.

I am glad we won, and the next two games, (UMass and Bowling Green) should be wins, but again these teams are not to be taken lightly. I hope the winning continues and Michigan will have a great season GO BLUE!

On another note, the NFL finally has begun and I cant wait for the season to finally get underway today. the saints game was bad, and not very fun to watch although it was still awesome that the NFL started. I hope the Giants don't disappoint too much, but today's game against the panthers will be a good first test and they better have a chip on their shoulder for how poorly they played last year against the panthers and got blown out. That better be a reason to play out of their mind. GO GIANTS!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

I will always remember...

First I want to say God Bless America. I am certainly no supporter of the ever lasting war in the Middle East but I am proud of our bounce back from 9/11/2001. I remember that day vividly, as I'm sure most people do. I was in 8th grade and I had just started at a new private school (which I hated and left after 1 year). But I was in history class when rumors began and before I knew it we were being funneled into the gymnasium in order to listen to our principal tell us what was going on. Afterward we were able to watch a little of the live news coverage on a TV that was placed in the gymnasium for anyone who was interested or worried (basically everybody). I also remember coming home from school and the upper part of my road being closed off. I thought it was due to construction but i didn't link the view of my street that pointed toward the city to be a hot spot for on lookers. Let me just say, I lived about 20 miles from Manhattan and about a quarter-mile up the street from my house is a view of Manhattan. On 9/11/2001, the view near my house was littered with people who wanted to watch the towers aftermaths. I watched as smoke poured into the sky and although I never saw either tower collapse, it was a site to never forget. I will always remember...

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Maize and Blue

So as the college football season kicks off, I experienced my first College game of my life and boy was it fun. The University of Michigan has a prestigious history for sports but most notably their football program. Many NFL stars have suited up the Maize and Blue gear, but over the past few years, with their new coach Rich Rodriguez, Michigan football has not seemed the same. This game possibly marked a change in recent times.

I didn’t do much heavy tailgating, mostly because I am still unfamiliar with the campus. I first met up with some of my planning colleagues who were having a small get together at one of their houses. It was fun and relaxing, but after I left, I stated my journey toward the Big House. Thousands of people dressed in yellow and blue, hundreds of parties and tailgates along the way, and a sunny and mildly warm end of summer day created the best concoction for football. I can’t try to explain what the atmosphere was like, but I have never seen such passion and dedication towards a sports team before. I am sure many other large Universities have similar qualities, but because this was my first time at a major collegiate event this was an event I will always look forward too for this season and next. I wanted to meet up with my roommate and his friend who were tailgating on the golf course, but I never did make it. It just took me too long to walk from the central to south campus and by the time I got to south campus it was 30 minutes to game time.

Walking into the stadium has a very simple but large feel. The stadium is HUGE. Accruing to the game announcer it was 113,090 people attended huge. Yeah, it was nuts. I have never seen sooo many people in one sporting event. The stadium is great, because it really has a college field and although my tickets are not considered the best seating, I had a very good viewing angle. The stadium is built below road level so the concourse dumps you out onto row 50 or something like that and so every seat is great. Standing for almost 4 hours was not so great, but again it was all part of the experience.

The game itself was awesome. Michigan played Uconn, and many people thought Uconn could upset Michigan. Well they were wrong. From the start, the wolverines played hardnosed run it down your throat offense. Mainly their quarterback was the rusher (he rushed for 197 yards or something like that) but in general Michigan just overpowered Uconn. The quarterback who apparently was battling for his position played very well. Not only did he rush a lot and picked up a lot of yards (he is one of the fastest players on the team and in the country) but he had no interceptions and only a few incomplete passes. The defense also played well giving up only 10 points and allowing I think less than 300 yards of total offense.

It was a great game and a great first game to go to. Michigan won 30-10 and I hope their next home game is even better. I found that Michigan looked a lot like the rich Rodriguez West Virginia team of the past where the quarter back could throw, run or option it off because of the QB’s speed and spread formation offense. I hope that means the players are finally buying into the coaches system and they will stop having losing seasons. LET’S GO BLUE!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Quick run down of the weekend premier league games

Here are just a few comments I sent to some of my friends about the games this weekend in England...Enjoy

Finally saw all the games.

I have to say Arsenal looks good and sorta fun to watch, BUT i still hate them. So Spurs for the title and yes they had a bad lose. Chelsea I believe are def not as good as their 6-0 victories looked. When they play any real opponent I don't think their defense is up to the challenge. In fact I feel like Terry has lost a step or something because he has been looking kind of shaky in all of their games especially the game against Man U.

Newcastle's Andy Carroll is my new favorite English player. I will be following him, and I think Newcastle will be a force (not in the top 5 or 6) but they will give every team up and down the table a problem, so I see them staying in the premier league.

Man U again won and Giggs and Scholes are running shit hard....they are ageless and I know Scholes and Giggs have had a great start, my only concern is can they keep it up for 40 + games. I don't know and i would have to lean toward no they cant because of their age and their bodies breaking down. I just don't see them keeping this fit and sharp till the end. And when they do go down hill, I don't know who they will pt in to replace them. That is when problems will occur.

OK Sundays games were good as well:

Aston villa needed that win, but i have to say both goalies played well (GO USA). Also Ashley Young and Luke Young for Villa were the ring leaders in that offense.

The Bolton game was good because of Bolton's comeback but Villa's goalie was stupid for raising his hand like that.

Finally, Torres scored and it was a nice goal. He looked soooooo much better than he has in his last few appearances especially in the world cup. Im glad to see he is getting fit again and i hope he is great.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

620 miles and 10 hours later....

Well today I left for grad school. After 620 miles and 10hours of interstate highway, Ann Arbor seemed like a great place to end up. So far I have not seen much of the school, but my apartment is great, my dinner was nice, and all I have are compliments so far. My apartment is fully furnished and in a great location. I can walk to my classes, use the buses to get to games and around the city, and everything seems so new. All of the buildings I have passed by, a lot of the roads and town (including all the construction they are doing to make things even newer) all seem so new and well maintained. School is not in session for another week so campus seems a little dead right now, but I am sure it will ratchet up in a few days. One surprising thing, although I have barely seen all of the campuses, is that it sees smaller than I imagined. My only comparison to a big school is U Pitt where I have been a few times to visit a friend. U Pitt, unlike U Mich does not have much of a designated campus per se. They have many buildings that occupy a general area but are spread out throughout the Oakland area of Pitt. U Mich has three distinct campuses and I like that because I feel like I am at a University and not so much a city. I can’t wait to explore more the campus tomorrow with my mom. I also can’t wait to start classes. I am not looking forward to the orientation parts because orientation is usually not very fun. Anyway, I missed the soccer games on today, but I will catch up on them asap. I am exhausted and the only thing I wish I could have is my GF around right now. I miss her a lot, and although I have moved 600 miles closer to her, I’m still 2,400 miles away so it’s not easy but she is worth the fight.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Champs Draw and NFL season

Well today the Champions league groups came out, and there are some surprises, but in general it looks like it will be another great year of soccer. The group of death by far is Group G with AC Milan, Real Madrid, Ajax and Auxerre. Now I don’t know anything about Auxerre other then they are French, and my guess is they are the weakest out of the three French club teams in the groups. Lyon (who made it to the semi finals last year) and Marseille always tend to be the strongest of the French clubs. But other than Auxerre, the group can swing any which way. Ajax has fallen off in the recent years but in general they are still a reputable club with lots of history and pride themselves on their young talent. AC Milan and Real Madrid are the power house teams who could easily take over the group but both teams had a poor showing in last year’s champions league and neither team have won their respective leagues within the past few years. With that said, Real Madrid is the clear favorite to win this group with plethora of players and their new coach. I personally hate Real Madrid, and that could be from my Barcelona fandom, but also because I hate Ronaldo and Mourninho. Either way AC Milan should come in second if this was a paper game, but I could see Ajax giving them a run for their money.

Inter Milan also has a tough draw in Group A with Tottenham, Werder Bremen and Twente. I know nothing about Twente, and I assume they are the weakest of the group. Werder Bremen is a strong German team, and had a great young star who was just moved to Real Madrid named Ozil (most know him now from his wonderful play during the world cup this summer). Tottenham is the fourth English team in the tournament and was the only one to have to play into the group stage. I heard that this is the first time Tottenham has ever made it to the group stage which makes me like them most in this group and tournament. Many people would refute my statement only because many critics have said that they expect Tottenham to just fold in champion’s league and focus on the Premier League. This makes sense because it seems that they would not be able to manage their team for so much play. Unlike Chelsea, Man U and Arsenal, Tottenham has the least amount of depth on their team. Finally, the last team in this group is the past champion. Inter Milan might be expected to win again only because their team has not changed much. I expect them to win this group but I do not think they will win the tournament again.

The other groups all seem pretty lopsided. Arsenal, Barcelona and Chelsea should cruise through their groups. Marseille might give Chelsea some problems but that’s the only thing I could think of . Man United and Bayern Munich could have some problems with Valencia and Roma respectively but I expect them to win their group. I hope to see Bayern go far again because a bunch of their players were in the world cup and they were very fun to watch. (Robben specifically). The only group I don’t know about is Group B. I feel they have a tough group because Lyon, Benfica and Schalke all can play at the same level. Lyon did have the surprise run last year all the way to the Semis but they proved they could not make it all the way. I would say Lyon is the favorite but I feel like it is a tossup between the three.

To move away from soccer, the NFL are having discussion now about making next year’s season (if there even is a season) longer from 16 to 18 games. I think it should stay at 16 and I only say it because I don’t think the players can physically do it. I don’t like 4 pre-season games but I feel that with less pre season games will only or just create as many injuries as 4 preseason games only because people will not be fit enough to play yet, and that’s when injuries occur. Also, I forget who it was on ESPN Radio, but they talked about how taking away two games/weeks of preseason would hurt the local economies of where the preseason camps are. I think this is right on point, and I do not think it is fair that a huge corporation like the NFL can lengthen their regular season so they can make more money but their preseason locations will lose money. It’s just not fair. I hope it stays at 16.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Weekends events

So yesterday I went to my first Yankee game at the New Yankee stadium. I have to say I was very impressed. The stadium was beautiful and basically reminded me off the old one. I loved how wide all the corridors were and how easy it was to move around. In the old stadium, it was pretty hectic at times and usually not fun to walk around. Although they were playing the Mariners, the stadium had an attendance of 48,000+ so there were a good amount of people there. Also I took the D train there from Manhattan, and it was extremely easy to get to and get out of. Now about two weeks ago I went to the New Meadowlands stadium, which seemed to be a traffic nightmare. Driving in and out of that place took over an hour each way, and the public transportation to the stadium is sub-par. Compared to the New Meadowlands, the new Yankee stadium is a lot better. As a bonus the Yankees won and it was a great game.

This morning I watched the Manchester United v. Fulham game. It was an excellent game. Both sides played well, but Manchester’s defense seemed to give up on them at times, hence Fulham’s goals and multiple chances. Vidic and Evans had trouble defending the likes of Zamora, Dempsey and Davies. Even though Dempsey was subbed out in the 60th minute, Manchester still was unable to hold their lead and gave up a late goal off a corner kick near the end of the game. Dempsey played well and was involved in most of their chances including their first goal. Zamora played well and was a rock in the front. Davies and Hangeland scored and both had good games. For Man U Scholes who has been playing well at the start of this season, added to his success with a goal, although after his goal he had trouble supporting his defense. Nani missed a PK after a by Fulham in their own box, so that was disappointing. Rooney never played which is unfortunate because it seems he is still having troubles getting fit. Berbatov and Hernandez played alright, but they didn’t get many chances. Valencia basically didn’t do anything. I am glad I saw the game because I missed most of the games on Saturday due to the Yankee game.

Also one note about the Aston Villa game. I didn’t see the game and I was shocked to see Newcastle blew them out, because Aston villa is a good team. Not to take away all the credit form Newcastle, but Villa can be a top 5-6 team. I know they are going through a coaching dilemma (more on that in a second) but I would still think they would have played a little better. As I mentioned last week when they played Man U, Andy Carroll is going to be a good player and I saw that he had a hat trick which I was not surprised about. He will be a force if he keeps this up. About the coaching situation, an article yesterday or today on ESPN said that Bradley would be interested in the job if offered and has had some contact with the club. I am all for Bradley to move to Villa, only as long as a good replacement is found for the USMNT. I would want an American too, only because I do not like the idea of importing a coach for a national team. I think national teams should be national from top to bottom. No foreign coach should be coaching our team. That’s just my two cents.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Random Thoughts

I have a lot of thoughts going through my mind about what has happened in the past few days in the sporting world.

First, today news broke that Roger Clemens (a former Yankee) will be indicted for lying to congress about his steriods use. This is no shocker. He deserves w/e punishment they come up with. No one should lie about thier past especially if it is so obvious. Clemens could have easily been the good guy in this siutation if he followed his ex-teammate Andy Pettitte. All he had to do was be truthful and none of this would have been as big of a deal. In general the way I feel about steriods is, if you took them admit it, but honestly do steriods really make someone a better baseball player? He might be able to recover faster, and be less fatigued (I get that), but Bonds still had to hit a 90 mph fastball, and Clemens still had to throw his pitchs in precise locations, so dont give me the ideological backtalk. I would just like the players that did do steriods to admit to it and I will have no problems with them. I like A-Rod and Pettitte even though they did something wrong.

Next, I have been listening to a lot of sports radio, all on ESPN radio, which I love. I am able to do this because I drive for work, so I am in a car for about 3-4 hours a day. Anyway, all the programs are good, but my favorite is "The Herd" with Colin Cowherd. I love his in your face reporitng and I feel that he shines light on the reality of what is happening. Most recently he has been talking about the Reds and there "fake" first place. I think he is dead on, and not just about the Reds (who I dont care about) but just about most sports topics.

Also, the Carmello reports are intriguing . First I like the idea of him in the Tri-state area. Next, rumors said that his suiotrs are the Knicks, Nets and Rockets. Before I say my two cents, I just want people to know Basketball is my least favorite sport. If anything college basketball is way more entertaining than the NBA and the difference is EFFORT. The majority of NBA games are not close, and usually effortless. Defesnse is secondary to scoring, and only the best players are fun to watch. Whereas NCAA bball has it all. Scorers, defenders, and hustlers and the reason why is becasue they are playing for pride and glory, where as the NBA superstars play for money. Kobe, Lebron and other elite players of course leave everything on the court but normally the NBA is boring to watch. With that said, Carmello is a great player, and I think it would be awesome for the Nets to get him, rather then the Knicks only because New Yorkers feel like they deserve him. BS! The Knicks felt like they were robbed of the Lebron deal, and they have been robbed in the past before. I think they just do not have the best place to play basketball. Everyone says there is no place like NY but if that was true then why havent they done anything recently, and even in Ewing's day. I think the Nets are better set up for Melo, with thier new owner and soon to be new arena in Brooklyn. Thats just how I feel. Also, I do not know how the Rockets are even a choice in the matter.

Fianlly, the Favre saga continues, and I think the man is a great QB, but I hate the games. I wish he could make up his mind, and I understand why he cant let go of the game, but then he should just keep playing. Play until your arm or ankle falls off. That is what he should do. Also today's reports say he is not getting along with the coach, and honestly Chidlress probably knows less than Favre, so I think Brett should be the ring leader, because obviously last year it showed that Childress's conservative play was not as succesful as Favre's gun slinging.

Just one last item, good for the Yanks for winning 3 out of 4 with the Tigers. Im glad to see they are getting some wins against a team they need to beat. These are crucial wins with their battle against the Rays heating up. Lets Go Yanks!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Man U v. Newcastle

Just finished watching the last game of the first week of the Premier League start. Good game, and I was excited to see Rooney play although he seemed rusty. It was good to see Berbatov score, because I think he will need to play a bigger part in the scoring then he did last year. I don't have many comments about the game, but overall I think Man U played well. It seemed to take them a little while to warm up, but once they scored their first, they were on a roll. They clearly out possessed and out performed Newcastle, although no one had Newcastle as the favorites. Their first game back to the Premier League and they certainly did better then West Brom, but maybe could have done a little better. They did have a few scoring chances, mostly by crossing the ball in to Carroll. Caroll by the way seemed to have a lot of promise and in a few year might be a good addition to any major team, and the England national squad.

Scholes seemed to be the ring leader of the offense, with Nani, Evra and Valencia running like mad men up and down the wings. Berbatov did a good job of planting himself in the center of all the action, and it seemed to work really well. I don't know at this point who would be my top team, Chelsea or Man U, but both teams played well for their first game. It should be a great season, and I cant wait for more

Ari's Fall from Mt. Olympus

So last nights episode of Entourage was very interesting. I am a huge entourage fan, and sometimes I cant watch the episode the night of its airing but I always watch it the next day. The episode last night was a culmination of what Ari, as well as Vince, have been dealing with. Vince seems to be a drug addict now ever since his accident on the action set of his upcoming action film. He has been seen using cocaine, vicodan and drinking heavily. This seems to portray what a lot of Hollywood actors go through, because you always hear of stories about someone going into rehab for some sort of substance abuse. It seems as of last night that Vince will be checking into a rehab unit if he does not wise up.

On the other end, the bad mouthing Ari seems to be dead (for now at least). last night after some of his tapes were release he got teary eyed and very discombobulated. Which is a characteristic Ari rarely shows. At the end of last season, he was seen as Greek God taking over LA, and now he seems like he has fallen off of his throne. If Amanda did it, I think it was a cold move especially because she just wanted to hurt Ari. Now at the same time there is something in the back of my mind that says Lizzie is not being truthful and is trying to back-stab Ari and was the one who actually released the tapes. Either way Ari seemed heart broken because as he explained, his family is now going to be tarnished not to mention his business. I think it will be an interesting season from here on out, and this is by far the darkest season we have seen yet. This season has focused a lot less on glamor and more on reality and the pressures of Hollywood.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Opening Day Spurs v. City

What a great opening 25 minutes for Spurs. With five wonderful shots on net, and five great saves by Joe Hart, the spurs certainly looked like the team they ended with last season. Bale played like he was in peak form, as well as Assou-Ekotto. Both of them played on the left side, and Ekotto had a few great balls up the left side for Bale on the sprint to move the ball down the wing, which started a few good goal chances for Spurs. The majority of the team looked good as well. Ekotto and Bale were the best. It was also nice to see Dos Santos get playing time, after having a great World Cup and previously being loaned out for the past few years by Spurs. I think he will have a great future ahead of him, and it looks as if Mexico could have a power house of a team maybe in 2014, but certainly possible for 2018.

Anyway, the real question for the game was not how well Spurs would play, because they had little change during the off season, but how well Manchester City would do with all of their big spending. As many commentators and I’m sure reviewers said, they looked like a team with a lot of individual talent but no cohesion. Tevez played the best I thought and really had the only good chances during the game. Overall the Toure brothers played alright together but Yaya seemed to be trying to figure out City’s system. I also enjoyed watching Silva, but he never really had much space to run and dodge the Spurs defense. They did a good job of having at least two guys cutting off his direction, and so Silva, like Yaya, seemed to be a little lost at first. The only good sign for City, was their goal tending. If it wasn’t for Joe Hart, City would have been down at least 2 or 4 goals to nothing. He made some dazzling saves in the first 25 minutes to keep City in the game, when they looked like a beaten team.

Overall, the game satisfied my pallet for the opening of the Premier league. Although other games had more goals, Chelsea 6-0, Aston Villa 3-0, I thought this was the best Saturday match. It could be a crucial battle in the second game for possible 3rd or 4th spot. Anyway Man City still has plenty of time to get their new star players used to the system, but they had a relatively poor showing for their first game. They were lucky and I am sure happy that they made it out with a draw.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Fifa's new plan

I just read an article from reporting that FIFA was going to think about changing its overtime and tie game situation.  They might eliminate all ties, and either impose a Golden Goal overtime format, or just do away altogether with the overtime and if tied at the end of 90 minutes, have shoot outs.  This is said to be for ALL world cup games (But I assume they mean all group stage games considering those are the only games that can be finished in a draw).    I do not think this would be a good idea, because I think soccer thrives in its overtime system.  The NHL did away with ties a few years ago after the lockout and although I think it has worked for them, they are looking for any ideas and changes to attract more people.  Soccer is already the most popular sport in the world and so unless the MLS was trying to get more spectators and fans, I do not think this will be a good idea.  If they do want to get rid of ties, I would prefer a golden goal, or just the same format as any single game elimination format.  Full 30 minutes of overtime and if still tied go to PK's.  I think that would be the best format if they do away with ties.  I also think ties are very important in the group stages, becasue if everyone was seperated by wins and losses, then the tie breaker would be goal difference.  Where as with ties, points are divied more evenly between teams and more teams fight harder for ties and what not.  Now it will take out some of the fun if ties are eliminated.

Also I will be writing about the opening of the Premier league today and the Tottenham game which I watched and was the first game aired on ESPN this season.  I am excited!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

The Journey to 2014...starts...tonight! (but I hope it ends better)

So tonight I went to my first US men's national team game.  They played Brazil at the Meadowlands and it was not their best performance.  The only real threat came in the first ten minutes by none other then Donovan.  Edu (or it might of been Buddle I forget) threaded a beautiful cut back pass to Donovan who maneuvered past two defenders and after the second defender was knocked off balance and once he stepped into the box the ball was poked away by a third defender and he fell to the ground.  There could have been a penalty marked right outside of the box, although Donovan was making the case for a possible PK.  Either way nothing came from it and that was the end of the night for the most part for the US.

The US played lethargic and out of place.  Their midfield was basically just Bradley who was playing his usual holding midfield position but Feilhaber, Edu, and Badoya barely helped out and so Bradley had to move the abll himself many of times.  It seemed to me that without either Dempsey or Donovan on one of the wings/sides, the ball could not be moved quickly up the field or precisely anywhere on the pitch.  The midfielders struggled to get the ball to the two strikers, Buddle and Donovan.  I understand Bradley's idea for Donovan up front, because of his speed, but if no one can get him the ball with space, Donovan is pretty useless.  This was just one troubled spot.

The Defense played pretty stiff as well.  They seemed to be playing an offside trap that completely broke down during the second goal.  Gonzalez didn't mark Pato making a run, and Bocanegra either kept him onside when he attempted to chase him and tried to pull back to keep him offside, or it was just a nice run by Pato and both centerbacks were beat.  Either way no fullback played particularly well.  Bornstein got burned both trying to hold back Brazil's speedy wingers crossing the ball, and he got beat defending a cross and basically stood in front of a Brazil attacker as he jumped up and got a uncontested header for the first goal.  It was sad to watch, but luckily it was just a friendly.

The strikers did no better either.  As I mentioned above, Donovan was not able to find much space with the ball and so his speed didn't play a factor.  Buddle had some awful touches, and it seemed that every goal kick that was sent his way he either couldn't get to, or he just headed it to nobody.  I don't watch Buddle that often but I certainly wish he played more in the World Cup, but after tonight's performance his size did nothing for the US.

Even after all the subs, and it was awesome to see Jozy Altidore play (although he did nothing either), nothing really happened.  Bradley had a nice chance but it was called offside, and like the whole first half of the game none of the midfield subistutes were able to push the ball to the fowards. 

Overall Brazil played their normal speed and flash game, with Robinho, Alves and Pato all contributing in some form.  They didnt play their best but they played better then the US.  It was nice to see Bradley coach possibly his last game at the US men's head coach.  Rumors have him possibly going to Aston Villa.  Anyway even though the US lost, I still love them and I am glad I was able to see them play.  I hope the next time they play better.  But this was just the start to 2014...

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Red Sox v. Yanks and Community Sheild

Last night I watched the Yankee game and was glad to see the Yankees got the win.  CC again and again keeps showing the Bronx why he is their best pitcher.  Even though he gave up two runs early on, he was able to stay focus and throw a pretty good game.  Also, Robbie Cano had another solid game, and like the announcers were talking about, he is becoming one of the premier second basemen in the league.  Both his batting and fielding are very impressive, and I have watched about 5 Yankee game in the last 15 days or so and every game i watch, his arm strength and quickness seem to be unmatched.  Any slow roller, or mediocre flip for a double play almost is always completed for an out because he can get the ball out of his glove and whipped to first base before you can blink.  All the while, he seems like he is just using his wrist or slight shoulder strength to throw the ball.  He makes almost every play look as if he is not trying.  Its really fun to watch.

Furthermore, this morning the Community Shield game was on FSC.  Chelsea and Manchester Untied battled it out at Wembley.  It actually was a pretty good game to watch and Manchester looked pretty sharp. Two strikers, Valencia and Hernandez (aka Chicharito) had wonderful games.  Both scored and both are new members of the team.  Valencia, I knew little about and so I was surprised to see he was an Ecuadorian national and he was so talented.  I don't know if he will start during the season, but after this game his chances for getting good playing time seem good.  If he doesn't start he would certainly be a great spark off the bench.  Hernandez was signed right before the World Cup started, and as many noticed during the world cup, Hernandez had a great outing with Mexico.  He played a solid striking role and seemed to the future with Dos Santos.  Other players for Man U also looked good.  Rooney had a great feed to Valencia for his goal, where he beat Terry on the wing from a lobbed ball and then was able to slide the ball toward the middle of the box for Valencia to knock in.  Berbatov also had a good lob goal over the keeper in the last few minutes of the game to seal the deal.  Scholes played well, and seemed to have most of his passes successfully completed. 

As for Chelsea, not much seemed great.  They had a few good opportunities here and there but overall i was not impressed for reigning Premier League winners.  The Defense looked lazy, Ashely Cole and Terry were both beat for goals and goal chances.  Essien played well for the first half, and it was nice to see him play considering he missed the world cup and many games last season due to injuries.  I hope he will play well this season, he is a great player to watch.  Malouda played average, Anelka played alright, Drogba played well except he was not in till half way through the second half.  The best player I though was Sturridge.  He had a few blast with his left foot that really impressed me, and it was a rebound from his shot about 18 meters out that got the goal by Kalou. 

I heard no talk about Wembley's pitch which was apparently one of the worst in England last season, even though it was only used for major games and events.  I read a few months ago how the grounds crew there was either fired or quit because of its poor maintenance.  I wonder if they have fixed the problems, but maybe this was just the beginning so the pitch was in good health.

Anyway, another Yanks v. Sox game tonight which is good.  Cant wait. 

Friday, August 6, 2010

1st post

Hello all,

My name is Isaac, and I have created this blog for fun.  It will mostly pertain to sports and my daily life, but sports is 50% of my daily life.  Besides sports, I love my family, significant other (of course when applicable), friends and life.  Sports are my passion, along with Cities and city planning.  I am about to start a Master program to get a degree in Urban planning, and I would love one day to help in the planning of a stadium either in the US or abroad.  I am originally from Northern New Jersey and with that said I am a die hard NY Yankee, NJ Devil,  NY Giant and (when they are good) NJ Net fan.  Additionally I am very passionate about overseas and domestic soccer (football for most of the world).  I plan on blogging about all sports, but I think soccer will take up most of my time. 

My passion for soccer started four years ago, during my freshman year of college.  My roommate as well as two of my best friends from school began enjoying the game of soccer.  My roommate and my other friend Pino had already loved the game for years and really got me passionate about the game and following leagues such as the English Premiership, Spanish La Liga, German Bundesliga, and Italian Serie A.  Of course there are more leagues and I try to follow as much as I can, but its tough in America because most games on TV are English games or some games from the above mentioned leagues.  In addition to my passion for watching soccer, our obsession was strengthened by our devotion to the video game Fifa.  Fifa 07, 08, 09, 10 not only have been great games, well maybe not 08, but have also strengthened our friendship to the furthest height.  With out Barto, Pino and Muff (I will never use real names), I would not be the person, Soccer Fan or Fifa player I am today.  These guys are the best guys in the world and they only fuel my passion.

My favorite soccer teams include, Tottenham Hotspur FC, FC Barcelona, USA National Team (GO USA!!) and the NY Red Bulls.  I also try to follow as many American soccer players playing abroad as i possibly can.  Players like Clint Dempsey, Jozy Altidore, Tim Howard, Freddy Adu, Carlos Bocanegra, Alejandro Bedoya, Michael Bradley and many others...

With all that said, anyone who follows me, will learn more about me as my blog gets bigger but for now you can  describe me as a young adult who loves all sports, especially my teams, and enjoys cities and life.  I hope you enjoy...


Urban Yankee