Friday, March 30, 2007

The unfortunate ignorance...

"We allow our ignorance to prevail upon us and make us think we can survive alone, alone in patches, alone in groups, alone in races, even alone in genders." - Maya Angelou

Despite our human instinct toward networking and connection, there is still a prominent amount of ignorance that leads us in areas of segregation, prejudice, and overall separation. However, if man can learn to overcome his ignorance, the foundation for unity is already present.

In Sports Today: Another unfortunate blemish for professional basketball as former NBA star Micheal Ray Richardson made anti-Semitic comments while coaching for Albany in the CBA. His ignorance earned him a season long suspension. Earlier in his career, he was banned from the NBA for drug use.

In News Today: The continued ignorance in Middle East relations took another hit today as detained Briton Faye Turney exclaimed she was sacrificed by British and U.S. policies and pleaded for the withdrawl of troops from Iraq.

At Fairfield Today: A recent study showed an increase in substance abuse amongst college students throughout the country. While Fairfield has seen this, their ignorance continues as they continue and fail to provide desireable alternatives to these activities. For further commentary see last week's The Ak Attack in print.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Triptophan in chicken wings

I have no idea what it is, but when I embark on our weekly Archie Moore's Happy Hour, regardless of the amount of $2.50 specials or wings, I always end up sleepy.

Why is that?

I can handle my beer so let us not think it is some sort of inability to maintain my manhood. The problem is if I have a social one or a one helluva week three or four, the result is the same. Within minutes, I am yawning, lightheaded, and inevitably fall asleep. Perhaps the biggest kicker: it may last up to five hours!

If I sleep the night before or not is irrelevant and the results remain the same. Some less than qualified scientists have chimed in. My housemate wisely said that if the only thing I was consuming all day was that, the effect would be explainable. I agreed and decided to start my day earlier and have some decent food before Happy Hour. The result?

The same. Yawning and passed out by 7:30 pm.

A family member suggested it was merely my relaxed state. Perhaps. There are few times in a man's life that he can truly sit back, relax, enjoy a tasty beverage and a free chicken wing and not be in heaven. Well maybe if a Swedish supermodel was accompanying you.

Nonetheless it remains a mystery and the only food combination that has this effect on me.

I ask you readers: what is the deal?!? Comment below!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

The role of an athlete...

In a break from the daily quotes, (don't worry they'll continue tomorrow) I sit next to candlelight getting ready for an evening of work before tomorrow's class. However, there was something pressing as I continue to read about the distasteful acts of some of professional athlete's most prominent figures.

While I in no way would ever condone the actions of someone like Tony LaRussa , recently arrested for DUI, or half of the Baltimore Ravens for their scandalous acts, the fault does not lie with the athlete as much as it does with the fan.

I, like many in this country, pay exorbitant amounts to see a hockey game, baseball game, the occasional football and basketball game, and frequently for concerts. However, I am in the wrong for doing so.

While these entertainers are certainly in the limelight, they are not role models and are nothing more than average humans who have a unique talent. That is it.

True their actions are unacceptable and certainly worthy of criticism, parents, kids, and fans should not view them as role models as so many do. Even further, people should in no way continue and pay these athletes to continue and justify their actions. Should I pay hundreds of dollars to contribute to drug addictions, lawyer fees, or bail money? The answer should be a collective "no."

Unfortunately, this will most likely never change, but hopefully the perception of them will in time. I think the first step was perhaps Mark McGwire not getting the Hall of Fame induction. Is this a turning point? Hopefully. However, it is going to take a unanimous smack across the faces of these athletes by the American people to put them in their place and recognize that they are nothing more than entertainers.

What's with the weather?

"Climate is what we expect, weather is what we get." - Mark Twain

In light of today's radical temperature change, a little something about what we expect and reality. There is only so much predictability in life and the unexpected is the only thing we can expect.

In Sports Today:
With the Final Four set, can Florida whether the storm from UCLA and become the first team in 15 years to win back to back championships? Time will tell.

In News Today:
Despite a weathering of opposing votes, the Democratic-led Senate narrowly voted to keep the Iraq withdrawl deadline of next March. Who knows whether it will happen.

At Fairfield Today:
Baseball weather Niagara this weekend to sweep their first MAAC series. Men's LAX couldn't weather the play of Penn State's Drew Adams.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Facing adversity and contention...

"First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win." - Mohandas Ghandi.

In the face of adversity or opposition, shying away from violence or aggression is difficult, but a valuable ability. We often find ourselves quick to jump, attack, or making impatient and emotional decisions. Taking a breath and thinking rationally about a situation should be valued.

In Sports Today: The Pittsburgh Penguins ,in the face of adversity all season, moved into first place in the Atlantic Division defeatinig the Boston Bruins 5-0, despite being the second youngest team in the league.

In News Today: The United Nations find themselves in the face of adversity with Iran and their growing nuclear capabilities. The U.N. will have to decide whether to be active and aggressive or diplomatic with the contentious Iranian government.

At Fairfield Today: The University will continue and face adversity as further issues continue to arise with housing and student affairs. The University will have to be tactful in dealing with a growing contentious student body.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Some character...

"I can accept failure, but I can't accept not trying." - Michael Jordan

The path of least resistance is always the easiest to take, but often the least successful. Reaching a potential or going down fighting builds character, yet is too often sacrificed for the sake of comfort and ease.

In Sports Today: Another off the field football incident, Dolphins' Joey Porter hitting Bengals' Levi Jones at a Las Vegas casino, is just a continuing trend of ignorance and disrespect for the game. If you are going to fail yourself, fine, but don't bring down the fans or the city you represent. The NFL players have shown a total lack of class and character.

In News Today: A convicted child molestor and his parents were indicted after the molestation and murder of a 6 year old neighbor. While the culprits are lacking in any sort of humanity and character, the real problem is the continued failure of the legal system. Prior to the latest incident, the molestor George David Edenfield has a prior molestation conviction. Until we start locking up those who commit crimes that lend themselves to repeat offenses, particularly rape, there will still be victims of some of the most heinous crimes.

At Fairfield Today: The aftermath of former women's basketball Head Coach Dianne Nolan is settling down. In her 28 years with the University, her ability to persevere and become a staple and face of Fairfield showed great strength and character. Her presence will sorely be missed.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

A bit of inevitability...

"Death is caused by swallowing small amounts of saliva over a long period of time." - George Carlin

We often forget that life comes with certain inevitabilities. There are countless small facets and actions that in the end contribute to the greater whole.

In Sports Today:
The NHL is currently seeing major infractions and handing out suspensions, such as NY Islanders' Chris Simon for 25 games and his infamous stick swinging incident. However, if you give grown men sticks and don't allow them to protect themselves or each other (namely due to the instigator penalty), these penalties will inevitably occur.
In News Today: As gas prices continue to rise, the greater question lies in when the American people will just stop giving in? If people continue and pay for the exorbitantly priced gas, then it is inevitable that prices will not stop rising.
At Fairfield: With the current housing changes and issues, students are further forced to occupy themselves on an overly boring campus and town. If you don't provide students a decent alternative to illegal or questionable acts, it is inevitable that problems will arise.

New happenings...

Since I have struggled a bit to decide how to theme this blog (everything from general sports to Fairfield to life) I have decided to include a bit of each, but with a new twist. Those who know me best are aware of my infatuation with quotes and lyrics. Why? Maybe I wish I could write like that? Maybe I just wish I could impact someone with words the way songs and writers do. Who knows. Either way, each day or so I will have a new quote and a bit of how it applies to the day for sports, life, news, and of course Fairfield. Stay tuned!

Sunday, March 04, 2007

All's well that ended not well

What can be said about the seasons for men and women's basketball? Well, quite a bit. Overall each had a solid regular season. The women were expected to compete, and did. The men were certainly not favored for a first round-bye, but got it and went on a nice streak in the mid season. However, there are certain fundamental flaws in both teams that perhaps can come with change from the top to the bottom.

Coach Nolan's fate will be decided in the coming days. Chances are she will stay, though I personally think she should move on, for her sake as well as the program's. She has done a fine job, particularly this season, and came within two points of probably solidifying her job. However, what continues to plague women's basketball is the lack of depth as well as the inability to shoot.

As we saw, Sabra Wrice is the heart, soul, and defines the basketball team. However, there are not enough players to complement her. The drop off is too steep from top player to next best. Perhaps Baendu Lowenthal and Meka Wertz can pick up where their potential had them, but if not who will step up? Stephanie Geehan certainly showed flair as a freshmen, but can she establish herself?

Who is to blame for an inability to execute the fundamentals? College players should be able to hit shots from the outside, both the men and women failed and it ultimately led to their demise. However, should the Coach put greater emphasis on foul shooting and outside shooting? As both teams lost by a mere possession, it would seem that there should be more attention paid to it. Besides, systems are integral, but only effective and less obvious when teams have to defend outside as well as down low.

Coach Cooley, did an outstanding job this season with a group of recruits he had little to do with. As he made it known throughout the season, these are not his kind of guys. Other than Van Schaick, there is not much distinction amongst the rest of the players. As he put it, it's Shake and a bunch of role players. While this is true to a degree, each player did not play up to their potential down the stretch or in the tournament. Jon Han and Marty O' Sullivan needed to be better. Did Cooley have to stress more to them, or were we as fans just hoping for more than these players actually have to offer.

Overall, it is very difficult to advance in the tournament as this year had a lot of parity. At the same time, the program needs to be reinvented and revived. Coach Cooley has been the first step for the men, and either a good recruit or new Coach will have to happen for the women.

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