Tuesday, January 06, 2009

You Know What?

I believe in moral victories.

And I think tonight was one for the Buckeyes.

You know what else?

I hate when I'm right sometimes. The following is a Fiesta Bowl Prediction by me:

"I don't think they have quite enough. I think they get some national credibility back, but lose 28-23, thanks to a Colt McCoy last minute touchdown."


I still believe that TP will bring a National Title to Columbus, but for now, all I have to say is:

Go Cavs, Go Steelers.

Friday, December 05, 2008

The BCS and WWII

So, yeah, I'm stealing this from someone, who stole it from someone. But I don't know who they stole it from. If you know the original author, feel free to let me know.


US Ranked 4th

After determining the Big-12 championship game participants the BCS computers were put to work on other major contests and today the BCS declared Germany to be the winner of World War II.

"Germany put together an incredible number of victories beginning with the annexation of Austria and the Sudetenland and continuing on into conference play with defeats of Poland, France, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Belgium and the Netherlands. Their only losses came against the US and Russia; however considering their entire body of work--including an incredibly tough Strength of Schedule--our computers deemed them worthy of the #1 ranking."

Questioned about the #4 ranking of the United States the BCS commissioner stated "The US only had two major victories--Japan and Germany. The computer models, unlike humans, aren't influenced by head-to-head contests--they consider each contest to be only a single, equally-weighted event."

German Chancellor Adolf Hiter said "Yes, we lost to the US; but we defeated #2 ranked France in only 6 weeks." Herr Hitler has been criticized for seeking dramatic victories to earn 'style points' to enhance Germany's rankings. Hitler protested "Our contest with Poland was in doubt until the final day and the conditions in Norway were incredibly challenging and demanded the application of additional forces."
The French ranking has also come under scrutiny. The BCS commented " France had a single loss against Germany and following a preseason #1 ranking they only fell to #2."

Japan was ranked #3 with victories including Manchuria, Borneo and the Philippines.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Black Friday

Ignoring the fact that I'm having an internal conversation about the role of consumerism, Jesus, and the world we live in, and how and why the intersect, and what that means to me, I went out this morning on Black Friday.

Let's just say that I've got several new books to read, including the newest Rob Bell book.

And that makes me very, very happy.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Score

It's odd when a celebrity passes away. One that you've never met, one that you've never had any real connection with. But, odder still when one passes away who connected with you, who actually had an impact on your life.

I'm not sure I've experienced that in my young life ... until today. Herb Score passed away today. The former pitcher and broadcaster for the Indians.

If you're unfamiliar with Herb Score, his professional career is a wonderful symbol of Cleveland sports in general. Promising young talent, only to have a catastrophic injury end his career, and along with it, the hope that he would lead Cleveland to the promised land.

But, it's not his playing career that connects him to me, it's his broadcasting career. He spent 34 years as the voice of the Indians, including the first 16 years of my life. In some ways, by listening to him on the radio night after night after night, Herb Score helped to raise me. He was a constant voice in my life. And, knowing he was retiring, part of the reason the loss to the Marlins in 1997 hurt so much (not that it needed much help, mind you).

And so ... it's an interesting feeling. Not the empty feeling and despair of losing a friend or a family member. But, not the unattached feeling of losing someone that you just hear about in passing and have no connection at all to.

Still ... I'll always have good memories of Herb Score. Calls only he could make like "Belle hits it to left field and ... it caught. No, its a home run!" or the magical call in 1995 when the Indians beat the Orioles to clinch the Central Division Title.

Rest in peace, Herb. I'll keep hope alive that one year, the Tribe will win a ring for you, yet.

Monday, November 10, 2008

NBA Stat Geek

So, there's no secret to the fact that I'm a math geek. There's also no secret to the fact that I'm a big sports guy. And, there's no secret that there's a human nature to attempt to combine the things you like.

Having said that, after a good bit of work on it, I've developed my own mathematical formula for ranking NBA teams. I'll leave the specifics of how I formulate scores to myself, but I'll share a little about how I wanted to develop them:

  • reward team that can impose their will during stretches of a game on both offense and defense
  • punish teams that get dominated during stretches of a game on both offense and defense
  • give teams credit for winning games
  • punish teams for losing games they should have won

  • And, that's it. I debated a few other factors, like margin of victory, or superstar presence, but decided those would be less unbiased and less helpful in predicting the best teams in the league. I'm hoping to keep up with it, and keep publishing my rankings periodically.

    So, here they are, my first rankings, to share with you:

    Rank | Team | score
    1. Boston 2.72
    2. Utah 2.37
    3. LA Lakers 2.2
    4. Atlanta 1.87
    5. New York 1.87
    6. Houston 1.78
    7. Phoenix 1.26
    8. Orlando 1.21
    9. Toronto 1.21
    10. Miami 1.04
    11. Indiana 0.94
    12. Cleveland 0.92
    13. Detroit 0.88
    14. Denver 0.71
    15. Chicago 0.64
    16. Golden State 0.5
    17. Portland 0.38
    18. Minnesota 0.38
    19. New Jersey 0.28
    20. San Antonio 0.08
    21. Philadelphia -0.12
    22. Sacramento -0.36
    23. New Orleans -0.45
    24. Dallas -0.45
    25. Charlotte -0.45
    26. Milwaukee -0.69
    27. Memphis -0.69
    28. Washington -0.78
    29. LA Clippers -1.64
    30. Oklahoma City -2.61

    Tuesday, November 04, 2008

    The End

    Well ... it's over.

    The Campaign that is.

    And, a streak of mine.

    So far in my life, the candidate I've voted for in the general election for the Office of President of the United States of America has won. I'm fairly certain that streak is over (note that I've never voted for the winner, statewide or nationwide, for President in the primaries).

    And, so, I happily bid this season goodbye. I am glad to be done with the ads, with the media coverage, with the way it makes people behave. Whomever wins tonight, there's a 99.999999999% chance that I did not vote for that person, but I pledge to respect and honor them anyways. The winner will likely not agree with me on many things, and I won't like much of his agenda. But I love this country, and I pledge allegiance to it, and to its leader.

    And, just think, tomorrow morning begins at least one major party's campaign to find their candidate in 2012.

    Saturday, November 01, 2008


    Even I can believe in ...

    Friday, October 31, 2008

    Happy Halloween!

    And, lest anyone might think this not be a "Christian" Holiday ...

    consider the following:

    Tuesday, October 28, 2008


    They say it springs eternal.

    They say it's one of the three things that remains (along with faith and love).

    They say Obi-Wan Kenobi is the only.

    And it's something I couldn't live without.

    When Rachel and I made the decision to move to Columbus, there was faith involved, there was love involved, but most of all, there was hope involved. Hope that this painful decision would result in our ability to advance in live, and thrive, and find abundance.

    I've yet to see evidence that our hope and faith were completely off the mark. Nothing of full fruition, yet, but enough to keep me going.

    But, today, I write of hope of another kind.

    Because, I have the hope that tonight is, honestly, the beginning of the end for the sports misery of my home town. For tonight, I honestly believe that the Cleveland Cavaliers will defeat the Boston Celtics, and march forward this year, ending with a parade in Cleveland to celebrate the winning of the NBA Finals.

    I know, I know. I had a similar good feeling about the Indians this year. But, consider the following:

    1) Unlike the Indians, the Cavaliers did something to upgrade their team in the offseason. And, the trade only cost them spare parts and junk.

    2) Unlike just about any time in my memory, the Cavaliers, unlike every other team I root for, showcase the best player in the sport, and he's not even into his prime yet.

    So, tonight, I return to the very place I sat and watched the Cavaliers lose game seven of the Eastern Conference Semifinals a few months ago. The Cavaliers also return to the exact spot where they lost game seven a few months ago.

    This is the year. I can feel it. I believe it. I have hope.