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“Many times perception is reality. With it being assumed that Haslam was in Berea on a daily basis—whether true or not—Haslam had more of a pulse on what was going on. The fact is that Haslam has commuted quite frequently between Knoxville and Berea and I believe him when he says his involvement with the Browns will not change.
The only somewhat of a big move thus far made by the new brain trust on the football side was the release of Frostee Rucker, so there is really nothing to gauge what is running through the minds of Banner and Lombardi with regards to the football operation. The new regime deserves a clean slate and a fresh start. But all Browns fans have to go on thus far is Banner’s reputation with the Eagles and Lombardi’s reputation with the Browns, Eagles and Raiders from his past NFL experiences.” [Greetham/The Orange and Brown Report]
“Doing this is easy with Ansah. At 6’6”, 270 pounds, Ansah is a physical specimen. This season was the first he has ever started at BYU, and only the second season he has ever played football in his life. Jeremiah Jensen wrote an excellent piece about him over as ksl.com that I recommend checking out.
The Good: Ansah recorded 62 tackles this season at BYU, 13 for a loss; 4.5 sacks; and 8 QB pressures. Ansah lined up everywhere: DT/DE, NT, and LB; left, right, standing up, and in 3 and 4 point stances. Ansah is an extremely physical player at the point of contact. He uses his initial bull rush and jab strength to create space to pursue runners or rush the passer. He shows the ability to shed blocks and move across his body to stop the run with consistency. He showed the burst, discipline and strength to beat double teams then take great angles on the QB or RB and make the tackle.” [Krupka/Dawgs By Nature]
“Over the last three seasons, Stubbs has appeared in 444 games. Over that time, no center fielder with as many plate appearances (1,808) has been a less productive batter than Stubbs. In fact, by the same criteria, Juan Pierre is the only baseball player at any position to have a lower wRC+ than the former center fielder for the Cincinnati Reds. Stubbs is good defensively as a center fielder, but that’s about it. Playing him in right field is like casting Lindsay Lohan to play Mother Teresa.
You might point out that he’s got 51 home runs over the last three years, which isn’t the worst of sums, but I’ll remind you that Joey Votto is capable of bunting baseball out of Great American Ballpark. Of the 59 home runs that Stubbs has hit over his career, 35 have come at his home ballpark in Cincinnati, where his HR/FB rate is a staggering 18.5%, compared to a far more normal 10.3% on the road.” [Parkes/Getting Blanked]
And now for something completely different- “By changing their name from Hornets to the Pelicans, the Hornets cemented themselves in the pool of teams with animal mascots – a pool with very little success. Of the 66 NBA championships, only 12% have been won by teams with animal mascots – and six of those were the Michael Jordan led Bulls. This comes even when animals make up 27% of all NBA team mascots. If you’re into silver linings, by changing from a bug to a bird, the Hornicans can point to the Hawks as a team to have won a ring with a bird mascot, but their single title came in 1958.
Meanwhile, the Sacramento Kings are moving to Seattle to become the Supersonics. Teams with job titles as mascots (Kings, Mavericks, Cavaliers, Wizards, Warriors) make up 17% of the league and have won only 3% of the championships. Highlighting why this is such a great move, even the Kings’ franchise’s sole championship came under the name Royals, not Kings – which is much less a job title as it is a lineage.
Of course, the old Bullets are the new Wizards – and it is those types of decisions that have doomed that franchise. Which means the franchise that could most increase their chance at a title with a name change would be Cleveland – by becoming the Cleveland Bullets.” [I Go Hard Now]
Finally, for fans of sports podcasts, here is Will Leitch’s playlist. [Sports on Earth]