Archive for September, 2011

ESPN’s NFL Blitz is a disgraceful excuse for a highlight show

September 25, 2011

Until a few years ago, NFL Primetime, an hour-long Sunday night highlight show of NFL action hosted by Chris Berman and Tom Jackson, was one of the greatest shows in TV history. Not sports history, TV history. They covered most games with a series of highlights over inspiring music, and they showed more than any other network. Now it’s done in bits and pieces. It feels like Berman and T.J. have been demoted. While Trent Dilfer is a nice addition, they only show a few games in depth, and today they actually showed just one highlight each from several games. It’s terrible.

The NBC show starts too early, so a lot of the games are still in progress, and the cast of characters act like deer in headlights, while Dan Patrick thinks he’s too smooth. The NFL Network is ok but it doesn’t have the music and it doesn’t have Berman and T.J. Plus the NFL Network is dominated by far too many Cowboys. Maybe ESPN isn’t allowed to do an hour long highlight show because of NBC or the NFL Network holding the rights, but either way, the Blitz is lacking.

Grantland: what a pretentious joke of a sports website

September 19, 2011

Grantland,” Bill Simmons’ sports and pop culture website, doesn’t add much that other sports websites provide, and in fact it’s pretentious and unnecessary. Simmons, the Sports Guy of ESPN’s Page 2, is a good sports writer and funny, but way too Boston-centric and when he strays too much into pop culture the site loses its appeal. The writing on the site is nothing special, just a collection of random articles. The plain, white background looks boring. The site gets promoted endlessly on ESPN and that time must be incredibly expensive.  The promos, again, show how hip the site is trying to be. I doubt if Grantland Rice was trying to be cool. He let his writing speak for itself.

I don’t have much reason to read this website, but when I did stumble across an article, it was pretty bad.  I’m not even sure what this article about Chris Mullin was trying to say, but these were my comments on it after it came out:

“This article is ridiculous. You compare Mullin to Nash and J.J. Barea because they are both white. they have nothing in common. The league is so much more athletic now? You make it sound like Mullin played in the 1950s.  The league is not more athletic now than it was in the 80s and 90s, and Mullin would be just as good now as he was then, and possibly better. In the 80s, mostly tall, frail guys controlled the paint? In the 80s, Ewing, Robinson, and Olajuwon came into the league. Centers were much better back then. You cite Andrew Bynum as a shot-blocking brick wall?  Unbelievable.  There are fewer good jump shooters today, which would make Mullin more valuable.  You say his decline at the end of his career was because the game changed! Could it have changed that much in 15 years?  The level of play now is worse than it was in the 80s and 90s. And right next to your article was one on espn.com by Hubie Brown, saying that Artis Gilmore, who played in the NBA in the 80s, was the 2nd strongest center ever. And if Mullin was so unathletic, what about Run TMC? It wasn’t Run TM.”

Play, puppets can help kids with autism learn social skills, understand concepts

September 18, 2011

Imaginative play can help children with autism and other disabilities understand concepts and relate information into meaningful contexts.

Role play and playing with puppets can facilitate creativity and spontaneity in kids on the autism spectrum.  By enabling students to take part in scenarios that help them understand how the world works, imaginative and symbolic play can help students who think in concrete terms understand abstract concepts and relationships.

Because children with autism often have a difficult time learning concepts and ideas, it is believed that acting out situations using puppets, toys, and other three-dimensional objects can lead to greater spontaneity, less scripting, and ultimately a more meaningful social experience.  It is believed that reciprocal social interactions and the use of spontaneous, meaningful language can also be enhanced through the use of imaginative and symbolic play.

To read the rest of my article on examiner.com, click here.

Michael Vick is great from the pocket

September 11, 2011

During Philadelphia’s 31-13 win over the St. Louis Rams Sunday, Brian Billick said on Fox that Michael Vick needs to be able to play well from the pocket, implying that he can only succeed on the run.

Vick finished last season with a passer rating of over 100 in the pocket. It’s a complete myth that he can only play on the run.  Vick also got criticism for supposedly not being a quarterback earlier in his career when all he does is win.

Maryland Terrapins defeat Miami Hurricanes 32-24 in Randy Edsall’s debut

September 11, 2011

Maryland began the Randy Edsall era with a 32-24 win over Miami in front of a sellout crowd of 52,875 in rainy College Park Monday night.

Danny O’Brien completed 31 of 44 passes for 348 yards, one touchdown and one interception to ruin the debut for Miami coach Al Golden, who had eight players suspended because of an NCAA investigation.  Those suspended included quarterback Jacory Harris and five defensive starters.

Maryland unveiled new uniforms that resembled the state flag, with half red and white colors, and half black and gold.  The garish new color scheme, designed to attract more attention to the team, will be debated by Maryland fans, but the uniforms were fitting on a night of exciting offense for the Terps.

To read the rest of my article on Examiner.com, click here.


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