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Kinda Self-explanatory no?

Fifteen Friday Fancies

“Being perfect is about being able to look your friends in the eye and know that you didn’t let them down because you told them the truth. And that truth is you did everything you could. There wasn’t one more thing you could’ve done. Can you live in that moment as best you can, with clear eyes, and love in your heart, with joy in your heart? If you can do that gentlemen – you’re perfect!”

Today is obviously not Thursday. However, it is Friday and I’ve got fifteen fancies for the thREADERS. Let’s move…

Perhaps the biggest news of the week is President Obama’s announcement of his support for same-sex marriage (1). In the, what, 36 hours since the interview, I have seen so many vituperative remarks on Facebook and Twitter. People have just been spewing all sorts of ignorance, and it really is sad. On top of all of that, many of these people call themselves Christians. Now, I pride myself in not getting too political with my weekly columns. I’m not here to tell people how they should feel or hurl my beliefs and opinions on them. I value people’s opinions; I merely express mine here. With that said, it saddens me that this topic seems to bring the worst out of some people. Whether you agree with gay marriage or disagree with gay marriage, to me, the underlying issue is human rights. I have come a long way as far as my feelings toward this issue because of my desire to be open-minded and progressive. It’s not my place to stand in the way of people who want to be happy and have the rights afforded to their heterosexual counterparts. You can quote Bible verses and tell me what “thus said the Lord” all day, but I also believe in tolerance, acceptance, and love. Like I have said several times here in the past, we need to do a better job of taking care of each other. We’ll talk about this more Monday night on our radio show.

Graduation

It’s graduation (2) season. Around this time every year, I am reminded of this because of the flurry of graduations I find myself attending. Along with the congratulations and well-wishes, the rude reminder of the economic state (3) taps me on the shoulder. Every April/May/June, a new article or study comes out with depressing news for recent graduates. This year is no different. One in two college grads can’t find work. Ugh…when will my generation catch a break? Maybe we won’t. Perhaps, college is no longer the guaranteed answer. The education system churns out more graduates than the economic system can keep up with. The Thread has decided to team up with PootKat Radio to investigate this issue with a special radio show (4) Tuesday night. Is college still worth it?

Sports

Last week, I talked about the Brooklyn Nets’ new logo and what I thought of it. Obviously, I wasn’t the only one. Phil Mushnick of the New York Post (5) wrote an editorial that suggested that the Nets be renamed the “New York N—–s (6).” What’s worse is that this man has been defending his racist remarks. He has said,

“I’m never comfortable using that word [ni----r]. That’s the way I was raised. Shame on my parents,” a sarcastic Mushnick writes. “The ONE time I spelled it out – for accuracy – I was widely condemned as a racist. So either way, I’m a bigot. I know what’s in my heart and my head, the way I was raised, and the way I raised my kids. But you’ve painted me a racist. Good work, James. And good work, if you can get it.”

There’s more…

“Such obvious, wishful and ignorant mischaracterizations of what I write are common. I don’t call black men the N-word; I don’t regard young women as bitches and whores; I don’t glorify the use of assault weapons and drugs. Jay-Z, on the other hand…..Is he the only NBA owner allowed to call black men N—–s?”

This guy still has a job. Mushnick is stirring up a hornet’s nest, and I would advise him to stop. His logic is extremely flawed and has no place in any publication. To suggest something so absurd, demeaning, and disrespectful is disconcerting. To base such a reasoning on Jay-Z (7) is asinine. I’ve had countless discussions, read several books, and attended several forums concerning the N-word. However you feel about the word and its use, the fact is that it’s not going anywhere. The problem with Mushnick is that he assumes that Jay-Z is the figurehead of the black mass public. If he has a problem with Jay-Z lyrics, I think he should take that up with Jay-Z. He should not implant such a ridiculous notion like calling a basketball team a derogatory name.

In other news, the “geek chic” (8) has been displayed in full force these past few months. I found this article describing many NBA players’ adoption of the new style of looking professional, looking “dorktastic”, and challenging stereotypes. Players like Kevin Durant, Dwyane Wade, and LeBron James are now rocking glasses as accessories, skinny ties, vests, and shirt buttoned all the way up. I must say that it is a welcome site. I’ve even bought into the style. I honestly hope that stereotypes concerning black athletes are being rewritten.

Speaking of the NBA, these injuries (9) are beginning to pile up. We’ve seen several star players go down at an alarming rate this season/post-season. David Stern (10) contended that the number of injuries is no different this season than any other a few weeks ago, but he seems to be backing away from those sentiments now. I think we’re seeing the ramifications of a shortened season over a shortened amount of time with no training camp. I’m interested to see where things go from here and what kind of changes we see made.

In more disturbing NBA news, Chris “Birdman” Andersen (11) is under investigation by an internet child pornography unit. I realize that Anderson has had his issues with drugs and whatnot, but this is a completely different animal. I’ve watched enough To Catch a Predator episodes to know that this is serious if they’re searching his home and removing computer hardware. I don’t want to speculate too much, but this situation sounds disgustingly bad.

Music

Justin Bieber (12) is a part of Floyd Mayweather’s “Money Team.” Can we talk about this? I used to hate on Bieber all the time for being another singer for the teeniebops, but this young man is doing things. He’s part of Mayweather’s entourage, carrying his belts, and looking faded in the process. Then, I stumbled upon his new “Boyfriend” video. I talked about this song on Twitter a few weeks ago, and it is dope. Seriously, Justin Timberlake needs to return to music because Bieber is taking his style spot.

Chris Brown (13) and Rihanna (14) are at it again. I know, I know. I’m sick of them, too. Brown released a song that uses Kanye’s “Theraflu” beat, and he references his “old b—-.” Rihanna took exception to this and unfollowed him on Twitter. He returned the favor. Anyway, here’s the song if you care to listen.

Mother’s Day

Finally, I’d like to acknowledge and thank all of the mothers out there. This is your weekend, and I wish all of you a very happy Mother’s Day! Happy Mother’s Day, Mom!

Here are my favorite “Mom” songs:

5. “Mother” by Pink Floyd
4. “Blueprint (Momma Loves Me” by Jay-Z
3. “A Song for Mama” by Boyz II Men
2. “Dear Mama” by Tupac
1. “Hey Mama” by Kanye West

-23

 

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Thirteen Thursday Thoughts

“Mama always said, dying was a part of life. I sure wish it wasn’t.”

Junior Seau

This Junior Seau (1) situation is truly sad. It didn’t really hit me until I read players’ tweets and watched interviews on TV. Marcellus Wiley (2) was in tears talking about the type of human being Seau was. The details are still sketchy, but it appears that Seau was battling depression and committed suicide at his home. Junior Seau was never my favorite player, but I had a lot of respect for him. At a time when the NFL (3) is being sued by former players, coaches are being suspended for an entire season, players are being suspended for multiple games, and investigations are ongoing for alleged cheating; the timing of this apparent suicide probably couldn’t be worse. I know I wondered if Seau’s death was somehow related to a brain injury or some other form of trauma he sustained as a player. I pray for his family and friends. I also pray for the Chargers organization. Since 1995, eight former Chargers have passed away. All of them were under the age of 45. David Griggs died in a car crash; Rodney Culver died in a plane crash; Doug Miller was struck by lightning; Curtis Whitley died from a drug overdose; Chris Mims had an enlarged heart and died from complications with that; Shawn Lee and Lew Bush each had a heart attack and passed. *sigh* Rest in peace, Junior.

Scattershooting

So…there’s a church…in Tulsa, Oklahoma…at a bar…called the Drunk Monkey Tavern (4). After my initial shock, I got to thinking, and it’s not a bad idea. A local church streams its service to the bar every Sunday. The bar doesn’t serve alcohol during the service, which is nice. As a Christian, I find this to be progressive. You’re not always going to reach people at a typical church with pews, preachers, and judgmental parishioners. I respect the effort to be fishers of men.

Lil Boosie (5) is about to have his day in court. He has been charged with first-degree murder for plotting to have someone killed. I’ve seen a surge in #FreeBoosie hashtags on my timeline on Twitter. Each time I’m tempted to unfollow these people. There are causes to take up, there are people to rally around, and there is Lil Boosie. Sorry, the justice system can keep him. He hasn’t been proven guilty yet, but he was stupid enough to talk about the murder in his music. See: “187″ 

Speaking of music and controversy, I watched VH1′s documentary, which highlighted the LA Riots (6) and hip-hop’s role in them. Watch “Uprising: Hip-Hop & The LA Riots” here. I was really impressed with it. When the LA Riots were going on, I was at an age where I didn’t completely understand what all was going on. I didn’t have my head buried in the sand, but it was before my time. The documentary did a great job of explaining everything from the Rodney King beating, the subsequent acquittal of the policemen who beat him, the Korean lady’s exhoneration after killing Latasha Harlins (7), and the racial turmoil in Los Angeles during that time. All the while, there was music. The music that told the world what was really going on before it gained national notoriety. VH1 went a step further and compiled a tracklist of the songs that defined the LA Riots.

Thirteen people have now been charged in the hazing death of Robert Champion (8), the former FAMU drum major who was killed in November. This whole situation sucks. I had and still have so much respect for FAMU’s band, the Marching 100 (9) and I hate that this is how many people will remember it. Currently, the band is indefinitely suspended. No matter what happens, no one will win here. A young man has lost his life, parents have lost a child, several students are facing felonies, and the school itself is tainted by this. This will get ugly.

Sports

The Brooklyn Nets (10) unveiled their new colors and logo that Jay-Z (11) helped design. I’m not impressed. First of all, it’s extremely plain. The black & white color combination is even worse. The Spurs already wear those colors. Ugh…I was expecting better.

These are pathetic.

Entertainment

There’s a push for “The Bachelor” (12) to feature its first African American. Lamar Hurd is a former professional basketball player from Oregon, who is in the running to be the next Bachelor. Here’s an interview with him from CNN and here’s his YouTube video.

“The 25 Best Cheating Songs from the Cheater Themselves” Honorable Mention (13)

I’m dropping the top 10 (25-18; 17-11) of this list tomorrow morning, but I figured I’d tease the thREADERS with the songs that missed the cut. These are great songs, but three of the four couldn’t make it to the list simply because they are not from the perspective of the cheater. They’re still great songs, so I’m showing them some love.

1. “It Wasn’t Me” by Shaggy – This song met the criteria, but it couldn’t quite crack the top 25. Perhaps Shaggy’s denial is what kept this song off the list. His girlfriend had all the evidence necessary to prove that her man was cheating, but he spends the entire song denying it.

2. “Follow Me” by Uncle Kracker – I really like this song, but like the next two songs, it doesn’t meet the criteria for this playlist. He’s the other guy who is convincing the woman to leave her husband. It’s so lovey-dovey sounding that you forget that it’s a song about secret lovers.

3. “Down Low” by R. Kelly –  This song was literally sitting comfortably in my Top 10 until I realized that R. Kelly wasn’t a cheater. There is no mention of a girlfriend, wife, or anything. However, there is a paramour. What a tragic tale this becomes when you watch the video.

4. “My Little Secret” by Xscape - Before Kandi was a “Housewife” and selling sex toys and before Tiny found T.I. and fell victim to plastic surgery, there was this jewel of deception. Instead of the quartet representing the woman who steps out on her man, it represents the side chick homegirl messing with a man who has a girlfriend. What’s more intriguing is that she likes being in the same room as the couple. Messy, messy, messy…

-23

 

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Sports in Real Life: Sleeping with the Enemy: A Manual to Surviving Dating a Fan of Another Team (with help from MichaelYoungHistory)

Recently, the Thread tackled the important intersection of religion and relationships via ThreadRadio, which got me thinking about other issues in dating someone who doesn’t adhere to your beliefs/loves/interests. And then, walking into my bathroom, I saw this:

The Worst Part of Waking Up- the Anti-Folgers

The Worst Part of Waking Up- the Anti-Folgers

Yet another reminder of the sports inadequacies of my boyfriend. Sharing only one of my teams, there are few sports conversations we share that don’t involve hating each other’s teams, bringing up painful memories (our combined teams have quite a few of them) and laughing every time an athlete from the other’s team tweets something ignorant.

I figured there may be other couples out there that can relate to this, so I thought I would share some of the strategies that have kept my boyfriend and I sane. Then, I realized that our situation is not only more complicated than most, but also a bit more ridiculous, so I thought a laugh at our expense wouldn’t hurt, either. I enlisted the help of my significant other, more often referenced around these parts as MichaelYoungHistory. Please reference his posts for all Rockets/Yankees/Bills/Giants/Duke slander.

1. Always “favorite” or screen grab their predictions for their team. Guaranteed fails every time.

I think this one pretty much explains itself. I know we all have high hopes for our teams every year (unless you’re a Browns or Bobcats fan right now) making the championship. We hoist the trophy in our heads at the start of the season, but putting it in print is pure ammo to your significant other. It’ll bring you closer!

2. Be supportive. Even when you have jokes and slander for days.

MYH: “I gotta be nice because my losses are coming.”

Not as much fun as #1, but trust, this one’s important. It’s all fun and games until the next game or week where your team gets clobbered and you have to taste all the hatred you were spewing before. When MichaelYoungHistory’s Ginas Giants won the Super Bowl, I was all about the high-five and big hug, because I knew if my team couldn’t win, I’d rather the Patriots lose his team win. When the Mavs lost on that clutch KD shot at the end of the game Saturday (still hurts), my boo didn’t laugh at my pain (externally). He understood losing close games because he’s been there before with his teams. MYH: “You have deal with the fact that the person that you love is down about it.” These are all lessons in love taught through sports. Slander with love.

3. Keep things interesting. Make a friendly wager when your teams play each other.

MYH:”The bets are crucial. As if we needed more on the line.”

Watching the NFL schedule released this month, the only cool part of sitting next to a Bills/Giants fan (besides the obvious Eli Face and Bills “always the bridesmaid” jokes) is figuring out if there are any games where our teams play each other, which of course, could either trigger the end of our relationship, or bring us closer. Depending on how well the winner handles the victory and stays out of the loser’s way. One of the ways to attempt to “lighten the mood” is to make a small wager- a home-cooked meal, a foot massage, a day of awful rom-coms or something equally painful,etc.- that both parties agree to if their team loses.

I unfortunately found myself in the loser’s corner this past NFL season, as the Giants beat America’s Team and broke my heart (and pride) not once, but TWICE. Both times, I had to prepare myself for the trash talking, seeing him wear that awful NYG t-shirt he claims is lucky and wishing nothing but pick 6′s on Eli Manning. We bet a favorite home-cooked meal prepared by the loser, which only made me more anxious each game. First loss, I played it cool. Handshake, head nod, whole nine. We also watched that game together (not always a good choice).

The second matchup, I decided it would be prudent for us to watch the game in different locations. Taking that “L” was the worst, but I will say this: having someone who cares about you enough to drive to you, not to rub their win in your face, but to listen to your monologue on everything that’s wrong with Jerry Jones, is love personified. I will never forget that. Ever.

4. Embrace the fact that you have a shared interest: an unhealthy obsession with sports (and the fact you hate some of the same teams).

MYH: “You care, and I care. And neither one of us are going to stop caring.”

We all have limits and deal breakers in relationships. In the sports department, there are some fans that I refuse to date, mainly because I know that I couldn’t possibly marry someone and have my kids root for those teams or go to their school. MYH: “I never thought I could date someone who was a serious Cowboys fan.” Fortunately, MichaelYoungHistory isn’t an Aggie, Sooner, Heat, Patriots, Redskins or Eagles fan. But he’s pretty much the next worse thing. I struggle every day with the Yankees and Giants fandom, but I know at the end of the day, we’re both Longhorns and can at least root for them together. We can also hate the Lakers together and it’s all good. 

Being a sports fan connects you to all of the other passionate people around the world that care about players they may never meet and teams that shouldn’t matter as much as they do. We know we’re a little crazy, and being with someone who “gets” that makes life a whole lot easier. When it came time for the important “toothbrush at my place” moment, yeah, he tainted it a little with that disgusting Yankees toothbrush. On the flip side, when he gave me a key to his apartment, an already big step was made bigger by the fact that he had the key made with the Texas Rangers logo and colors. It’s a pretty cool exchange, and I’m sure there will be moments where we struggle to find a balance between being a good partner and a passionate sports fan, but I look forward to the challenge. Especially when he says stuff like this, smack dab in the middle of a serious conversation about committment:

 MYH: “Oh, by the way, babe, we can’t get married during football season. We’d miss a whole weekend of good sports. You think we’re really more important to our friends than college and NFL football? I don’t wanna be that presumptuous…”

One thing we can both agree on.

 
 

Thirteen Thursday Thoughts (Sports Edition)

“Tower, this is Ghost Rider requesting a flyby.”

Disclaimer: Now, usually I don’t do this but uhh…there was a lot going on in the world of sports this week, both on and off the fields/courts/rinks of play.

The NFL Draft (1) is finally here. Unlike some of my fellow Threaders, I’m ready for it to be over. Seriously, the coverage has gotten ridiculous. Let us remind ourselves that the draft is merely a crapshoot for potential. Potential. What these cats did in college does not directly translate to the NFL. It could. It might. But it’s a gamble. I don’t need to look at numbers. I don’t need to look at trends. I don’t need to look at logarithms. The draft is a game of chance, and it has completely dumbed down my ESPN viewing experience. Let’s get this over with. Meanwhile, by the looks of things, the New Orleans Saints (2) may be in hot water yet again with the latest allegations of cheating. For their sake (and I’m not even a fan), I hope it’s not true. Who am I kidding, though? It probably won’t matter. If these allegations are true, Roger Goodell (3) will suspend the parties involved, and once again, it will be business as usual at the NFL nation under Goodell. Dear Saints, may the odds be ever in your favor. Oh, Mr. Goodell. He’s flexing his muscles by moving to suspend the Pro Bowl (4). Now, I can rally around this idea. What a bloody shambles that game has become. Players don’t play. The players that play don’t play hard. The players on Super Bowl rosters don’t even go. It’s just not the honor that it used to be. Hell, it’s not even in Hawaii anymore. We toyed with the idea of doing away with the Pro Bowl in one of my grad school glasses, but what do you replace it with? I don’t know what would make people watch. I’d be interested to see some kind of cool NFL field day type situation, though. Who’s the fastest player? I want relay races. I want head to head 100-yard dashes.Most bench press reps. Who has the best arm? As far as I’m concerned, this would be better than a sorry touch football game.

Damn, she's still fine in a mug shot.

There’s never a week that Twitter doesn’t deliver me a gem. This past week was no different. Deion Sanders (5) showed his insatiable appetite for attention again this week. He tweeted, “Pray for me and my kids now! They just witnessed their mother and a friend jump me in my room. She’s going to jail n I’m pressing charges!” That tweet just sounds like it came from a kid even as I read it. Look, I don’t know what made Sanders’ wife attack him. I don’t know why they’re still living under the same roof. I don’t know whose side to take. I’m glad Deion didn’t hit her, but this whole situation stinks to high heaven. Deion and Pilar should both be embarrassed and ashamed of themselves. Pilar and her friend shouldn’t have attacked Deion. Deion shouldn’t have brought his children into this situation by Tweeting a picture of his sons filing complaints with him. What an ugly and terrible situation. Who are the adults in this situation? Please, reveal yourselves. That divorce needs to hurry and be settled for the sake of everyone involved.

Ron Artest Metta World Peace (6) did it again. He demonstrated how unstable he is mentally. I’ve seen “the elbow seen ’round the world” too many times to count at this point, and each time I see it, there is no doubt in my mind that it was intentional. What bothers me more is the lack of remorse he showed after the elbow, though. Instead of checking to see if Harden was okay, he was squaring up with Serge Ibaka. Now that I’ve seen his interviews since the incident, I’m even more perplexed. He has said all the right things, apologized to Harden (not personally) and the Thunder organization, and accepted his 7-game suspension. But…Something is just not right with this guy. At all. He’s like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Just when I thought Artest World Peace had turned a corner, he goes back to his old habits. I want to like Dr. Jekyll, but Mr. Hyde keeps taking over and rearing his ugly head entirely too often. Someone get that shrink he spoke of a few years ago back on the line…

With that said, I’m excited about the NBA Playoffs (7) for some reason. This has been a shaky season full of inconsistency and lackluster performances, but the stage is set for an entertaining playoffs. The Rockets weaker teams have been eliminated, and it’s time for the best to emerge. I’ll go ahead and make my finals prediction: Miami Heat (8) vs. San Antonio Spurs (9). Give me the Spurs in 6. *Commence the implosion of Miami’s Big 3 and more slander at LeBron James’ (10) expense.* And can we keep the season at 66 games? I’m just saying…

Speaking of playoffs (Playoffs? Playoffs???), the NHL Playoffs (11) are already underway. This wouldn’t normally matter to me, but Joel Ward (12) of the Washington Capitals made the game-winning and series-clinching goal last night, much to the dismay of Boston Bruins fans. To add insult to injury, Joel Ward is black. *gasp* Several Bruins fans took to Twitter to express how upset they were and dropped plenty of N-bombs in the process. Really?? I asked if the NHL (13) had a race problem on Twitter. I quickly came to the conclusion that it wouldn’t matter even if the league acknowledged that it did have a problem. Non-whites aren’t exactly the target market. It’s quite unfortunate, but what can we do? I respect the Bruins and Capitals for releasing statements denouncing the kind of ignorance displayed by some of the Bruins fans last night, though.

Until next time, folks. -23

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2012 Draft Preview: Where Will They Go?

In addition to our Mock Drafts here on the Thread, MarkRod wanted to do a draft profile of his own. He has chronicled 5 players going into the draft who come from different walks of life looking to take the next step in their careers. The floor is your’s, my friend.

You remember them from their days in college. Maybe they were destined for greatness since signing day. Surely they will make big time impact in the NFL. How come I’m not hearing anything about these guys from Mel Kiper and Todd McShay? Wait, Ryan Tannehill is being drafted above this guy? That’s insane! Let’s take a look at five guys who were household names at one point during their college careers that none of the NFL scouts and talking heads are talking about.

Kellen Moore

Moore won a lot of games in college, but will he have an impact in the NFL?

There has been a lot of debate about Moore and his Boise State the entire duration of Moore’s career.  The debate used to be whether or not his Broncos could beat the big boys of college football and whether or not they deserved to play for the national title. Now that he has graduated, the debates have quieted down. There is no debate on where Moore should be drafted. He’s a sixth or seventh rounder that will be fighting to make it out of training camp on the roster. Moore has always been one of my favorite quarterbacks because of how he was always able to put his team in the best position to win, and how he made the game look so easy, even when he was lighting up big time defenses like Virginia Tech and Georgia. In reality though, Moore may be Ken Dorsey 2.0 – a great leader who was surrounded by even better talent. If Moore is going to have any chance at having an NFL career, he needs to be drafted by a team that excels at developing back-up quarterbacks. Teams that come to mind are Green Bay, Philadelphia and San Francisco (New Orleans was on that list, but with Sean Payton out for the year, that doesn’t seem like an ideal spot for him). Green Bay and Philly have done a great job of not only developing QBs, but also helping them reach a point where they later become starters.  Look at what Andy Reid has turned out over his tenure with AJ Feely and Kevin Kolb (you heard it here first: Mike Kafka will be the next QB Reid is trading for a 2nd round pick). If Moore is lucky enough to be drafted by one of those franchises, I like his chances of eventually panning out and evening starting a number of games for a team in the future.

Russell Wilson

Was giving up all that baseball money the right decision for Wilson?

We all remember Russell Wilson as the guy who was the only reason NC State scored any points to the reason Wisconsin was able to win it’s second straight Big 10 title and second straight Rose Bowl loss (all the Wisconsin fans reading this are wincing after that statement). What a lot of people may not know that Wilson is also turning down a baseball career with Colorado Rockies and having to give up half of the $200,000 signing bonus the Rockies gave him when he was drafted in 2010. A high total of strikeouts and ability to carve up secondaries would make me want to try my hand at the NFL too. Wilson has skill set to compare with some of the top QB prospects in the draft; where he comes up short is his height (insert lame laugh track)  Wilson actually measures in shorter than Moore, and apparently that will keep Wilson out of the first round and more likely in the fourth round. To me, Wilson is the third best QB prospect in the draft and I’d rather have him as my QB of the future over the likes of Brock Osweiler, Nick Foles, and even Ryan Tannehill.  Don’t be surprised if Andy Reid gives Wilson the call and brings him into his QB Academy. He actually fits into the system great, and Reid knows how to build an offense around the strengths of whoever is under center for him.  I think we will be seeing a lot of Russell Wilson in the NFL.

Darrell Scott 

From this.....

To this.

Here is someone who is very familiar to Texas fans, as he spurned the Longhorns on National Signing Day and joined the Colorado Buffalo instead… and then promptly washed out, transferred to South Florida and was really never heard from again. Now he is draft eligible, is has been given a very, very late round grade and will actually be lucky if he is drafted in the seventh round. I mainly wrote about him to show that just because you are the top recruit in your class doesn’t mean that guarantees you are destined for an NFL career. If you happen to be watching the late round coverage on Saturday, you may see Scott’s name roll across the ticker in the seventh round. Just know that it is THAT Darrell Scott.

Travis Lewis

You expect us to take you seriously with this hair cut?

After spending the past four years as the leader of the Oklahoma defense (and making it his personal M.O. to be public enemy #1 for all Texas fans), Lewis is looking to take his game to the NFL.  Lewis has a lot of positives going for him, including be the leader one of the more complicated defensive schemes college football as well has being one of those “high motor” guys who will always play hard.  Look for Lewis to go somewhere between the fourth and sixth round and make an immediate impact in the special teams game.  Lewis has the ability to have a very productive career in the NFL.

Blake Gideon 

Our last memory of Blake Gideon

We round out our look at these stars of college football by talking about the whipping boy of Texas fans for the past four years. Whether it was dropping that crucial interception against Texas Tech in 2008, the constant unnecessary roughness penalties, or the regression in his cover skills as a safety, we all have found new ways to hate Blake Gideon over the years (I may have been his last fan, constantly sticking up for him until finally I saw the light).  Don’t expect to hear his name on draft day. Don’t even expect to hear his name within the following weeks as an undrafted free agent signing. From what I saw, he performed pretty well at UT’s Pro Day, but yet is nowhere on any draft prospect list I have researched, and looks to be happy about ending his football career and ready to move on to the next stage of his life. Honestly, I’m a little surprised that he isn’t a serious prospect to be drafted.  Remember, he started every game he played in as a Longhorn.  Normally, when you see a guy who starts for three or four years, this is someone who at least is drafted and makes it through first contract. I guess we all will have as our last memory of Blake Gideon as a football player will be him getting torched by RGIII and the Baylor receivers.

Check out our entire Mock First Round HERE!

-Mark Rodriguez

 
1 Comment

Posted by on April 25, 2012 in Football, Sports

 

2012 Thread Mock Draft Part 2

Welcome back folks. As Dexter Morgan infamously says, tonight’s the night. And by tonight, I mean, of course, Thursday night! THE NFL DRAFT BEGINS!!! We’re here for the final 16 picks of our mock draft first round. CHECK OUT PART 1 HERE. Enjoy!!!

Mark: With the 17th pick in the 2012 Thread Mock Draft, the Cincinnati Bengals select Dre Kirkpatrick, Cornerback, Alabama.

It was very tempting to give the Bengals Janoris Jenkins with this pick (who may actually be the most talented corner available). It fits their philosophy to draft or sign extremely talented players who’s stock has taken a hit due to character red flags.  Also, just the idea of the dream team of Jenkins and Pac Man Jones as your starting corners is unreal. Opposing receivers would fail drug test just from the second hand smoke coming from Jenkins and Pac Man.  Children of strippers would have college funds started because of the money “raining” down from Jenkins and Pac Man. I’d want a season long edition of a Hard Knocks like show to follow them around all season if they ended up on the same team.

Anyway, the Bengals are trying to clean up their image, so they go with Kirkpatrick because of his great man-to-man coverage skill, which is something Cincy likes to do a lot, and the fact that he is a good character guy.  It also helps that the Bengals are picking again in four picks (this is originally the Raiders pick, thanks a lot Hue Jackson), so the Bengals have some flexibility to go after another need here if there is a more highly rated player available and still get some help for their secondary at pick 21.

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Posted by on April 24, 2012 in Football, NFL Mock Draft, Sports

 

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2012 Thread NFL Mock Draft Part 1

Welcome everyone to the 2012 Thread NFL Mock Draft. The NFL Draft officially starts on April 26th this year and will prove to be as fascinating as ever. The 3 of us that brought you the Thread Mock Draft of last year, are all back for another go. If you’ve forgotten who we are, the trio consists of myself, MYH, and friend of the Thread, Mark Rodriguez. The picks will be alternating after the first two picks (Which I’m writing up) like this: 1st: Mark 2: MichaelYoungHistory 3rd: Myself. *Note that we’ve done some moving of picks to allow all of us to make the announcement for our favorite team or teams. And with the ground rules in place, the Indianapolis Colts are on the clock.

With the 1st overall pick in the 2012 Thread Mock Draft, the Indianapolis Colts select, Andrew Luck, Quarterback, Stanford.

The consensus number one pick for the last 2 years, Andrew Luck, is just as advertised. The best QB prospect since Peyton or John Elway. We’ve heard it all before. And as of this morning, the Colts have finally made it official that he will be the #1 pick. He has all the skills to make a difference in this league from jump. But this guy has a very empty cupboard to go to in Indianapolis. Plus there’s the whole replacing that #18 guy. Oh, and Jim Irsay might be crazy. So good Luck…Andrew (see what I did there?)? The good thing for Andrew is he’s in a weak division (aside from the defenses) right now. He’s going to get beaten up pretty badly by the defenses at least, especially Houston, but he could win a possible game from both Jacksonville and Tennessee. Plus, Reggie Wayne was crazy enough to want to stay in Indianapolis. So it isn’t a total loss. If Andrew Luck has half the career Peyton Manning has had for the Colts, the Colts fan base can’t be too disappointed in letting Peyton go.

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Posted by on April 19, 2012 in Sports

 

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Thirteen Thursday Thoughts

“To making it count…”

Movies

Just as I finished digesting the news of Whitney Houston’s toxicology reports, TriStar released the trailer for Sparkle (1), starring Whitney Houston, Mike Epps, Derek Luke, Cee-Lo (2) (more on him later), and Jordin Sparks. I realize that this is a remake, but I’m really excited about it, and I have high hopes for it. I’m going to see it, if for no other reason than to see Whitney and hear her angelic voice one more time. 

Music

I finally got to see The Hunger Games, and I loved it! It wasn’t as good as the book, but what movie is ever as good as the book that precedes it? I felt that the movie did it justice, and I’m excited to start reading Catching Fire. Since I’m on the topic, Lenny Kravitz (2) as Cinna just might have been my favorite character outside of Katniss. I loved Rue, too. I won’t spoil the plot for those who have yet to read the book or see the movie, but I will say that he added a serenity to the movie, and he nailed his role. I’m glad to see that Helen, I mean Roxie Roker (3) passed some acting skills down to her son. Movin’ on up…here’s a list of my 5 favorite Lenny Kravitz songs.

  1. “Little Girl’s Eyes” (duh…)
  2. “Fly Away”
  3. “Again”
  4. “I Belong to You”
  5. “I’ll Be Waiting”

Kanye West (4) made the news again this week for his song, “Theraflu”, where he admits to falling in love with Kim Kardashian, throws his respect for Wiz Khalifa, and well…here:

“And I’ll admit, I fell in love with Kim, ’round the same time she had fell in love with him, well, that’s cool, baby girl, do ya thing, lucky I ain’t have Jay drop him from the team,”

I think Kanye is disturbed in all honesty. I’ve thought something was off ever since 808′s & Heartbreak. His “Runaway” video was the icing on the cake for me (even though I loved it). Fellow Threader, Terry the Trainer, eloquently nails my sentiments with this gem:

“Kanye’s new song reminds me of how badly I do NOT. WANT. FAME. Ever. Falling in love with Kim K while she falls in love with the dude she marries on your watch, just to dump him two months later, and leave you feeling empty…Now one ex is with an inferior rap guy (Wiz) and another ex is over you, overpaid, and thanks to your own big mouth, over-publicized as you openly admit defeat to an NBA guy who is as famous as he has recently become…Because of your ex. At a certain point, you are so celebrated, you just chase what (and who) is celebrated. You forget what you once were and what type of company you once pursued. I feel sorry for that in a way at the same time. You CAN’T be normal anymore.”

I couldn’t have said it better myself. “The Queen of Hip-Hop Soul” (5) found her way into my “Thirteen Thoughts”…again. By now, you’ve probably seen, heard, or heard about the now infamous Burger King commercial that has her looking like Catwoman on a table singing about crispy chicken, fresh lettuce, an assortment of cheeses, and ranch dressing. I suppose her days of drama, real love, goin’ down, and breaking through are over. utpipeline gave us a classic post yesterday, so I’ll just leave this subject with that. *walks away* *looks back* *shakes head* *continues walking* Mary, Mary, Mary, Mary, Mary… *sigh*

Cee-Lo (6) is quickly becoming another all-star on my Thoughts, but I’m not happy with him at the moment. A few weeks ago, Cee-Lo performed the unedited version of his hit single, “F*** You” at a fundraiser for President Obama, which was hosted by Tyler Perry (6) (more on him in a second). Dammit, Cee-Lo, you can’t do that!!! My people, my people…while I’m sure this is a popular sentiment directed at several of Obama’s opponents, it will certainly not help get the President reelected. *slightly head-bops*

Radio Show

Thread Radio is off and rolling now, and we’ll keep it chugging next as we talk about Tyler Perry (7). He has been the subject of several debates over on the Thread, so we figured we’d bring it to the public. So many people love him; so many people hate him. Is he good for black entertainment or is he bad for it? However, you feel, be sure to tune in Monday night at 10 Central at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/threadradio. Here are our first and second shows in case you missed them.

Sports

The Masters started today, and Tiger Woods (8) seems to be an early favorite. Timeout. You mean to tell me that it only took one win after 2 years for people to hop back on Tiger’s bandwagon? That’s it? I’ve watched so many “experts” and “analysts” say that they believe he’ll end up with the green jacket on Sunday. Color me skeptical. Oh, congratulations to Baylor for winning the title in women’s basketball! I got my wish of getting to see Skylar and Brittney Griner (9) square off, but I knew Baylor would prevail. Griner is simply unstoppable. I suppose Baylor Law School (10) was too excited about the win, and pushed some of the wrong buttons. Congratulations to the new class…I suppose.

YouTube

YouTube has done what it always does and provided some great entertainment for people this week.Here’s the 5-year-old comedian who calls out lazy parents (11)

On a Personal Note

I’m not Catholic, but I am a Christian, and I’ve been taking part in a fast in observance of Lent (12). I usually give up all liquids except water, which is also a tribute to my grandmother as she used to do the same thing. I also gave up fast food. Let me just say that this was probably the most challenging fast to get through. It’s not over until Easter, but goodness. I’ve been the awkward guy at the social outing at a bar who asks for water far too many times this past several weeks. All for good reason, but I’m glad it’s almost over. To God be the glory. Finally, it’s been a tough few days for me as tragedy (13) struck entirely too close to home. This guy that I grew up with and went to church with murdered his mother, who also went to church with me. There really isn’t much I can say because it’s such a tragic and heart-wrenching situation, but my thoughts and prayers are with the immediately family and close friends. I wish there was something we could’ve done. We knew the young man was on the wrong path. Maybe we didn’t pray hard enough. Maybe we didn’t reach out to him enough. Maybe we didn’t keep him close enough to us. I don’t know, but my heart is heavy. Let’s take care of each other.

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Thirteen Thursday Thoughts

“We’re having too good a time today. We ain’t thinking about tomorrow.”

Trayvon Martin (again)

This Trayvon Martin situation will not go away, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But it’s such a frustrating, aggravating, disheartening, and infuriating thing. Just when I thought this would be a quieter week, we get blindsided by Geraldo Rivera (1) making asinine comments. According to Rivera, “Trayvon Martin’s hoodie killed him as surely as George Zimmerman did.” I really don’t know where Geraldo gets off saying stuff like this. His own son was even disappointed in him. His logic is just so incredibly flawed to me. It’s like saying that a rape victim should blame the dress she was wearing. Don’t wear dresses or skirts, ladies. Just typing that feels stupid. Meanwhile, a police video (2) surfaced that showed George Zimmerman without any signs of blood or being attacked. This gives me more reason to be angry with the way the Sanford Police Department has handled this situation. Not to be overshadowed, The Daily Texan (3) ran an incredibly offensive cartoon earlier this week. Mind you, this is a student paper that is financed by student fees. The University of Texas just can’t seem to stay out of the news, and it’s not even football season. I’m all for people’s First Amendment rights and their right to express themselves, but those rights shouldn’t come at the expense of other people. I’m more upset with the editors of the paper than I am the cartoonist herself. How was that cartoon given the green light? What’s worse is that the editor tried his best to deflect the anger. #FAIL The statement was later taken down and replaced with a late apology. The damage has been done, though. Am I the only one who is just emotionally spent from all of this? This entire Trayvon Martin situation has reopened a huge wound in the flesh of this country. I have seen the absolute worst in some people, and it is so upsetting. I get tired of writing about racial issues every week on here, but they keep presenting themselves. I’ll have to go back and look at my Thursday Thoughts, but I don’t think there has been one without some instance of racism. It’s not like I even go looking for them. They find me. Just like this Hunger Games (4) foolishness.

Books

Speaking of The Hunger Games, I finished the book in about 3 days, and I loved it. I’ll be picking up the second installment of the series in the very near future. I’m happy I jumped on this bandwagon because it was very rewarding. The book itself is a whirlwind that refuses to let go of you or put you down. I’m sure I’ll find myself in someone’s movie theater this weekend to see the movie. I’m also getting REALLY excited about Eric Jerome Dickey’s new book, An Accidental Affair (5), which isn’t scheduled to be released for another 3 weeks. I realize I’m getting a bit ahead of myself, but I have thoroughly enjoyed his work over the years. Here’s a quick rundown of my favorite EJD books:

  1. Cheaters
  2. The Gideon Series (Sleeping With StrangersWaking With EnemiesDying for RevengeResurrecting Midnight)
  3. Chasing Destiny
  4. Milk in My Coffee
  5. The Other Woman

Yes, I realize I’m cheating by putting four books in my number two spot, but this is my list, and I can never decide which one in the series I like the best.

Sports

Dennis Rodman (6) seems to be having problems again. This hurts me to hear because I was a fan of the troubled, enigmatic, defensive guru. Michael Jordan wouldn’t have gotten those last few rings without him. Supposedly, he’s broke, sick, and could be facing jail time for failing to pay child support. *sigh* I hope he can get his life together. Another basketball great, who I happened to write about last week, is part of a team of millionaires who purchased the Los Angeles Dodgers (7). That’s right, the other MJ, Magic Johnson, is now a part owner of the storied baseball franchise. This man has seriously bought up the city of Los Angeles. I’m really happy for him. Johnson has done very well for himself. It’s a stark contrast in money management when compared to the aforementioned Dennis Rodman.

I have one more basketball note. Skylar Diggins (8) is still playing. I don’t know what to say about it; I don’t know what to call it. I don’t typically watch women’s basketball. There is just something about watching Ms. Diggins in uniform. We’ve talked about this phenomenon on this blog. A few times. She is just that rare mix of beauty, athleticism, and feminism. That’s the best I can explain it. I’m hoping for a Baylor/Notre Dame championship game. No, I have nothing to say about the men’s Final Four (9) this week. It’s Kentucky’s title to lose. That’s that.

The Month of April

I’m very excited about the month of April. First, there are a flurry of movies coming out that I want to go see. Judge me if you want to, but I’ll be there at some point to see Titanic (10) in 3D. Call it nostalgia or something, but I have some strange desire to go see it. I hate Hollywood. They have somehow convinced me that owning the VHS and DVD of the movie aren’t enough to keep me from wanting to pay again to see it in 3D. I won’t take this $17 price tag sitting down. Also, for nostalgia’s sake, I’ll be seeing American Reunion (11) as well. I’m not expecting much, but it’ll give me a reason to watch the first three two so I can relive my high school and college days. I refuse to count those other American train wrecks that tried their best to ruin the franchise. Band Camp?  Naked Mile? Beta House? REALLY?!?!? 

My fellow Threader, MichaelYoungHistory, convinced me to run in a 10K run (12) in a few weeks. I still don’t know how this happened. I’m not nor have I ever been a distance runner, but I’m looking forward to participating in it with a couple other Threaders. I’ve been training and preparing myself for a grueling 6.2 miles. Pray for me. I’m not built for this.

Closing Thought

Once again, thank you to the loyal and new thREADERS who have supported our new Radio Show (13) endeavor. We’re all looking forward to seeing where it eventually goes. Don’t miss Monday night’s show on “Interracial Dating” with TP4, Justinfication, and MichaelYoungHistory at 10pm Central. If you want a refresher, it will be based on this gem from TP4. http://www.blogtalkradio.com/threadradio

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Thirteen Thursday Thoughts

Another round of scatter-shooting, shall we?

Trayvon Martin

I suppose I’ll start off with a topic I didn’t give enough insight to last week, and that is this Trayvon Martin (1) situation. Through traditional and social media, more and more information has been shed on this tragedy, and it has honestly taken a lot out of me. As a male, it hits me hard because Trayvon could’ve been my brother, cousin, or nephew. As a black male, Trayvon represents the fact that we haven’t made as much progress as we’d like to think we have. As an American, Trayvon represents something our country is so afraid to confront when it comes to race. I’ve taken part in the #MillionHoodies movement (2) on Facebook and Twitter by posting a picture of myself in a black hoodie holding Skittles and Arizona Iced Tea. It was a bit of a social experiment in and of itself because my black friends and followers retweeted my picture, commented on, and liked it. Meanwhile, none of my white friends did. This is not merely a racial issue. It is an American issue, and while I’m happy that I’ve seen so many non-black people speak up and speak out against George Zimmerman and the Sanford Police Department’s total botchery of the investigation, it saddens me that by and large black people are the one’s taking up this issue. This is merely an observation. Maybe it’s just my friends, who don’t want to get caught up in it. Maybe they’re afraid that they’ll get chastised for asking questions. Maybe there is a disconnect. Maybe they’re ignorant to the many forces in play. I honestly don’t know. Maybe I’m just tired of bearing the burden of educating and bringing awareness to people who don’t look like me.

Sports

March Madness (3) has lived up to its billing. On Saturday, I watched my brackets go to ruins. Missouri and Duke both let me down. There were upsets galore, and once Missouri lost, I didn’t have much need to sit around and watch the rest of these teams beat my dead horse. We’ll see if I even watch as much action this weekend as I did last weekend.  With March in mind, I’m already sick of Tim Tebow (4). As if he didn’t get enough coverage this past season, I have to hear about this guy more in the off-season? Now he gets traded to The Big Apple? *sigh* We’ve seen what Linsanity did to that city; I’m scared of Tebowmania. On the other hand, Peyton Manning (5) made an interesting decision to pick Denver over some other possible suitors.  I’m in no position to make his decisions for him, but I would’ve picked San Francisco. There is more talent there, a better climate, and a better chance to get to a Super Bowl.  Once again, that’s just my opinion. I wish him the best of luck, though. I don’t think anyone could write a better book on how to stay relevant in the off-season than what the NFL is currently doing. The Super Bowl was almost 2 months ago, and the NFL has managed to stay in the news. Peyton Manning, Tim Tebow, the Combine, Pro Days, Draft prognosticating, and Bountygate. I get that most of those are a staple of most off-seasons, but this year just seems different. At least it’s not another labor standoff like last year. Roger Goodell (6) dropped the hammer down on the Saints…hard. Like I said a few weeks ago, the bounty system that Gregg Williams instituted with his defense didn’t really bother me since that culture is instilled in players at a young age. I definitely wasn’t expecting Goodell to suspend Sean Payton, fine the team a half million dollars, strip theme of draft picks, and suspend Williams indefinitely, though. It seems harsh, but I don’t think there will ever be another bounty program. Lesson learned.

Random Stuff

Yahoo! released a list of the 10 Richest Colleges in America (7), and it sparked a few interesting debates. I took issue with the fact that Texas is the richest public school, and third richest overall behind Harvard and Yale, respectively. The numbers seem a bit misleading since the numbers used are The University of Texas System’s number and not UT as an individual institution. It still bothers me that tuition has reached record highs, and yet some schools are rich. I realize this is a complicated issue that isn’t black and white, but it doesn’t sit well with me. It’s definitely not something to brag about.

The LA Coroner released Whitney Houston’s (8) cause of death. Her death was an accident, but several drugs were found in her system. Marijuana, Xanax, cocaine, and Benadryl were all named in her toxicology report. *sigh* I figured her death was drug related, but it hurts to read it officially.

Entertainment/Television

I wrote about Snooki from Jersey Shore a few weeks ago, but now her fellow cast member, The Situation (9), is in the news. Allegedly, he has been getting treatment for a problem he has with prescription drugs…or alcohol. Who knows? Color me shocked. As much debauchery as we’ve seen from the cast, I’m surprised there aren’t more of them with some kind of issue. I’m throwing no shade and no judgment their way, but nothing that I hear about that cast  will surprise me. VH1 has another provocative show in the chamber. They’ve graduated from the NBA and are now entering Hollywood. I’ve expressed my sentiments concerning all these damn wife shows, but the train seems to be picking up steam. Hollywood Exes (10) is the next stop. This show will feature the ex-wives of Eddie Murphy, Jose Canseco, Will Smith, Prince, and R. Kelly. I have to admit, they found some heavy hitters. This will get messy.

I’ve never been an ardent viewer of The Voice (11) or Dancing with the Stars (12), but I found myself watching both of them on Monday. I’m a huge Cee-Lo fan, but his pick of Erin over The Shields Brothers really threw me off. Ugh. In my humble opinion, Erin completely butchered Tina Turner’s classic. I thought she sounded awful. The Shields Brothers added a nice twist to it, though. Was I listening to something different? We’ll see if I keep watching if I have to listen to Ms. Martin again. Meanwhile, Gladys Knight and Urkel Jaleel White blew me away with their dancing skills. I shouldn’t have been surprised, though. The Empress of Soul looked amazing by the way. Y’all want to come with me on a trip down Memory Lane, compliments of Family Matters and A Different World? Of course you do.  

Finally, the ThreadBlog Radio Show (13) is premiering this Monday at 11pm EST/10pm Central. The King’s Law, utpipeline, and myself will be revisiting a popular and controversial blog post from a while back. “Is There a Difference Between Making Love and Having Sex?” Tune into http://www.blogtalkradio.com/threadradio Monday night and join us. If you can’t tune in, we’ll post the episode here on the ThreadBlog.

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