Sunday, March 30, 2008

A big strike against Obama

Spare me the excuses, but I don't know if I can vote for a man who can't bowl. This damaging video shows our future president bowling multiple gutter balls. How can we expect to be taken seriously as a country when foreign leaders can just hop online and see this? According to reliable North Korean news sources, Kim Jong Il consistently bowls in the 300s.

The video that ends his candidacy?

Duke Football in Action (sort of)!

Since no original reporting will go into this piece, I will simply copy and paste from GoDuke.com. (Takes me back to the days of The Chronicle) But rest assured DudeSpin will be there at the spring game April 19 to provide a complete report, and if legally allowed to do so, action pics!

DURHAM, N.C. – Re'quan Boyette recorded 98 all-purpose yards and Michael Tauiliili returned an interception 42 yards for a touchdown to highlight Duke's 100-play football scrimmage on Saturday afternoon at Wallace Wade Stadium.

Boyette carried the football 15 times for 65 yards and one touchdown while catching four passes for an additional 33 yards. Fellow running back Clifford Harris added 46 yards on the ground on 10 attempts.

In the passing game, Thaddeus Lewis completed 17-of-23 throws for 124 yards and one touchdown while Zack Asack was 17-of-32 through the air for 122 yards. Sheldon Bell led all receivers with six grabs for 60 yards while Eron Riley had five catches for 34 yards and one touchdown. Ryan Wood and Garrett Utt contributed three receptions apiece.

The Blue Devil defense registered five turnovers as Tauiliili, Eddie Morgan, Catron Gainey and Adrian Aye-Darko had interceptions and Wesley Oglesby recovered one fumble. Tauiliili added one quarterback sack on the day while Patrick Egboh logged two tackles for loss including a sack. Jabari Marshall broke up a pair of passes in the Duke secondary.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Greetings from Orlando!

Just checking in on DudeSpin from the road, in this case, sunny Orlando. The Franchise is back somewhere he hasn't been for seven years: WrestleMania.

Not that any dudes follow wrestling, but you can check in on what I'm up to down here at SLAM! Wrestling if you'd care to help us out with some extra page views. Head Dude is exempt, of course, due to his increasing family size.

And speaking of WrestleMania's past and future, it's rumored that the WWE is going to announce that next year's show will be back in the Astrodome, or whatever it's called now. Dude, you know what that means: someone might be asking to crash with you for a few days.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Who Are These All-Americans Anyway?

A friend passed along this hilarious link from the NYTimes blog, summarizing tidbits from the West Virginia press conference. Some highlights:

Cam Thoroughman asked whether Duke's Greg Paulus was one of the eight McDonald's all Americans. When told yes, Thoroughman said, "Oh my God. Are you kidding?"

West Virginia forward Joe Alexander . . . had the assembled news media cracking up when a reporter told him that Duke had eight McDonald’s all-Americans.
“Who?” he asked, very skeptically.
He wasn’t done. Nor were his teammates.

Alexander on breaking down Duke on film: “We knew that coming in that they were just going to stand around and not rebound. So we were ready to exploit that.”

Alexander on the Duke mystique: ““We don’t care that they’re Duke. That doesn’t mean anything to us. People look at West Virginia like we’re this mid-major school playing all these big schools and upsetting them. That’s not the case at all.”

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

I'm Not Calling Anyone a Liar or Anything, But...

I was once on the business end of a gun that wasn't fired and that experience was seared into a place in the back part of my brain. So I'm pretty sure that I could remember if I exited a vehicle under gunfire or not.

I'm just saying.

Monday, March 24, 2008

The Perils of Being a Sports Fan

It was one of those really bad sports weekends, about as bad as they get, that every now and then make you question if the highs of being a sports fan outweigh the lows. The answer is yes, but still... To wit:

(1) Duke apologists like these may come up with excuses, but when it comes down to it, right now Duke isn't the premier program in college basketball. UNC is. We have no more than two players on our roster with true NBA talent, and while unlike in '06 I really thought K did a good job coaching this team, the weaknesses speak more to recruiting miscalculations than anything. It used to be we could count on getting into the Sweet 16 on the basis of simply having more talent and athleticism than the opposition. But now, we're just like a number of other programs, more dependent on who's in our draw and whether our shots are falling to keep advancing. Sure, almost all programs would choose to be Duke in the blink of an eye, no questions asked, and would look at a 28-6 season as remarkable. But to me, when you start accepting having a great regular season followed by consistently not playing up to your seed in the tournament, you've accepted no longer being great. The fact is, since 2001, we've been eliminated by a lesser team in every year except 2003, and technically 2004, though we had that game salted away. And sure, we're spoiled by the success, no question about it, but I think high expectations are a good thing. We don't expect a national title every year, but it would be nice to take advantage of the high seeding every few years and perhaps at least get to the Elite Eight. Maybe I'm wrong, but Stewart Mandel of cnnsi wrote a column last month about how Duke peaks in early February every year and then declines through March, and frankly the statistics since 2001 bear that out. And while we should be tougher and more mature next year, given the continued lack of a big man, chances are, we'll be around a 2 seed again, but still needing a good bracket and our three-pointers to fall to advance past the second or third round. Am I still glad that I'm a Duke fan and not any other program in the country, absolutely, but it's a tad frustrating realizing your team is no longer the pre-eminent dominant program, and yet only took away one title during that period of dominance.

(2) After Duke game, I watch Stars lose their seventh in eight games, this time by taking a 2-1 lead into the last three minutes against the worst team in the NHL, only to surrender three goals in the next two minutes.

(3) To top it all off, I'm at American Airlines Center watching the Mavs try to salvage a disappointing homestand against the Spurs, and feeling like the weekend at least will end on a bright note as they take a 54-42 lead in the third. What follows is not only a 19-0 San Antonio run, but Nowitzki tumbles and pulls a Yao Ming, with the prospect of hearing today that he could be out two weeks, or he could be out for the season. And if it's the latter, there's a chance both participants from the '06 Finals will be out of the playoffs, and the Mavs will have gone from 67 wins to the lottery.

Of course, at the end of the day, I'll likely become a father this week, and it makes sports look silly in comparison. But since we're the dudes, and we like to talk sports, it was a weekend that makes you wonder.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter, Dudes!


While DudeSpin usually saves theological discussions for our friends over at BibleDudes, on this Easter I would like to present a special gift to all the dudes. Here are the top seven church signs I have passed on the way to work in the past year (in chronological order):

1) Life is Fragile - Handle with Prayer
2) The key to heaven was hung on a nail
3) If God is your co-pilot, switch seats
4) Seven days without prayer makes one weak
5) The light of the world has no power failures
6) Fear Knocked. Faith Answered. No one there.
7) Stop, Drop, and Roll does not work in Hell.

I hope all of DudeSpin has a wonderful Easter. With the Vision knocked out of the picture, we can once again focus on the resurrection of Duke Football.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Witnessing History

Simply put, one the most nuanced, intellectually honest, and magnificant speeches in modern political history.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Catch 22

With "The Streak" likely to end on Tuesday against the Boston Celtics, I thought it was about time for me to put up a celebratory post of the Rockets' historic streak this season. Along the lines of the terrific NBA ad campaign centered around the slogan "where _____ happens," this has been a Houston season where the completely unexpected happens.

In an offseason where GM Daryl Morey brought in seemingly every PG except the Franchise to elevate the team's play - it is the incumbent starter, Rafer Alston, who has continued to elevate his game to a stage where he is PLAYING like a legitimate top 5 PG in the West. And that's saying quite a bit when you consider that elite Western PGs include Nash, Paul, Williams, Davis, Parker, and Kidd. In today's hyped matchup against the Lakers, with T-Mac's jumper AWOL for the first half, Rafer turned the game into his personal showcase, raining 8 3pters and playing his usual stingy defense.

When the team was hit with the devastating news of Yao Ming's season-ending injury two and a half weeks ago, they only grew stronger. Since Yao's injury, Clutch City has reeled off 10 consecutive wins with a cast of T-Mac and a new star each and every night.

How long will this last? With Boston, New Orleans, Golden State and Phoenix on tap in the next four games - the answer is probably not for long. But let's enjoy the ride while it lasts!

EDITOR'S NOTE: after posting this, I realized that some readers might think, "Hey, Morey did bring in the Franchise, and he got hurt." Well, casual DudeSpin fans, the Franchise whom I speak is not of Takoma Park legend Steve Francis, but rather the DudeSpin's own Franchise!

Lucky Duke?

I think so. Getting a two-seed with Xavier as our 3 and UCLA as our 1 seems pretty fortunate given yesterday's loss. I think we deserved the 2 over Wisconsin since we beat them by 24 in December, but still thought we'd end up sliding to a 3 behind them. And we also got the weakest 3 in our region. Obviously UCLA is a great team, but they had some lucky wins in the last few weeks, and given the alternative of a red-hot Kansas or a 1-loss Memphis, this seems to me the best alternative. This isn't to say I'm penciling us in for San Antonio, and the West Virginia or Arizona second-round game will be no cakewalk, but all things considered, could've been much worse. If we were the 3 instead of Wisconsin looking up at both Georgetown and Kansas, I would've said forget about the Final Four.
Thoughts?

Friday, March 14, 2008

A Classic Example of Why the NBA is Faaaaaaantastic!

On this, the day that Duke begins what we hope is a four-week run in the postseason, I couldn't help but look at tonight's NBA schedule and be reminded why this has been the greatest regular season in our lifetimes.

In addition to having the top 7 West teams within 3 1/2 games, you get nights like this where Utah's at Boston, San Antonio's at Detroit, and the Lakers play New Orleans ... on the heels of a riveting win by Phoenix over Golden State last night. At night's end, any of three teams could lead the Western Conference, and New Orleans could be just a half-game back. Incredible. Meanwhile, Dallas and Houston get patsies tonight before opening up, at least in Houston's case, a brutal 5 games in 7 night stretch against some of the NBA's best. So by next Sunday, they could find themselves in 1st or 7th place, or anywhere in between.

March Madness gets most of my sporting attention the next month, but it's impossible to make it complete and undivided this year.

Saturday, March 08, 2008

DeMarcus Nelson



Tonight marks the final official Cameron appearance of Vision senior captain DeMarcus Nelson. Through injuries and those Navy SEAL workouts that we heard so much about, DeMarcus has been the standard bearer for the lunch pail player who showed up and gave his all every game and every practice. His will and his poise has helped define this year's edition of the Vision.

DeMarcus, DudeSpin thanks you.

Friday, March 07, 2008

An Inspiring Vision


As the sporting world turns its eyes to Durham for Saturday's big hoops game, ESPN viewers will be treated to images of Coach Cutcliffe with Payton, Eli, and even Heath Shuler hanging out together in Cameron. Cutcliffe was at the airport this morning waiting to pick up the Brothers Manning, and while I have hated them both for some time (well, I've only disliked Eli since early February), I can't wait to see them tomorrow.

As much as I love Fred Goldsmith, Carl Franks, and Ted Roof, none of them could ever get that type of screen shot on national TV. Now it's up to the broadcast team to make sure young high school recruits see the Quarterback Trinity early and often!

Subtraction By Addition?



Mark Cuban may have thought that he added the last piece to the Championship puzzle by acquiring Jason Kidd. But nine games into the Kidd experiment - the only Championship the Mavs have pushed themselves into is the Worst Deadline Trade Championship where they are running neck and neck with the Suns.

Of course, you might argue that no one would expect the Mavericks to beat the streaking Rockets, with or without Kidd - and you would be right. The Rockets are playing with fire and cohesion that I have not seen since the 93-95 Championship years - look, even the 41 year-old Deke is diving on the floor for loose balls - but let there be no doubt - no championship team is supposed to lose to a team playing without its best player on its homecourt by 20 points.

I'm sure Head Dude will bring up the one game absence of Dirk Nowitzki as some sort of an excuse - but let there be no doubt - Dirk is nothing but an average power forward in the Western Conference: very suspect on the defensive end, containable on the offensive end, as amply demonstrated by the Golden State Warriors last season. But here's some good news for Head Dude - junless the Mavericks toughen up down the stretch, they could be looking at a lottery pick!

Thursday, March 06, 2008

North Carolina's Newest Car Salesman

Big Daddy will enjoy this one the most, but if you've been looking to purchase a Mercedes in North Carolina, I've found the right salesman. Scroll down about 2/3 of the way.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Tight as a Tick in Texas

I gotta admit, on the morning of hopefully a decisive day, I'm not as confident of a clear win today. A week ago, all of the momentum was with Obama. And now, with controversies like NAFTA and Rezko swirling around him, not to mention the inane "3 a.m." ads, there's been a discernible trend towards Hillary the last few days. Granted, he's still likely to get more delegates in Texas, given the way the system works, but if she slides by in the popular vote here, and captures Ohio as seems to be the trend, I fear she'll press forward even though his delegate lead will still very likely be over 100. And who wins in that scenario? John McCain.

Monday, March 03, 2008

Current Western Conference Standings

Houston: 39-20
Dallas: 39-21

Not sure whether there's much else to say (though I'm sure Head Dude will see fit to insert a comment)