Saturday, February 4, 2012

Marshall Faulk won't cut Jeff Fisher any slack

Marshall Faulk is one of the greatest St. Louis Rams of all time. If there were a Mr. Ram, he might be it. He won a Super Bowl with the Rams and was the centerpiece of "The Greatest Show On Turf". During media day at Super Bowl XLVI in Indianapolis, Faulk was made available to talk to media and he gave his thoughts on the state of the Rams and former head coach Mike Martz. To say the least Faulk isn't thrilled with the Rams and isn't willing to cut new coach Jeff Fisher any slack despite his track record with the Tennessee Titans.    

• Faulk on Fisher: No. 28 expects quick results and doesn't seem inclined to give Fisher the benefit of the doubt if the Rams' reconstruction takes longer than expected.
"We'll see. That's all I can say. We will see," Faulk said. "Jeff had a long and illustrious tenure in Tennessee and Houston. How long is (owner) Stan Kroenke going to wait? Will they give him all five years regardless of how bumpy it is? If Jeff hits three of those 8-8 seasons, what do you do? That's a lot of money to be mediocre. You've got to deliver."
• Faulk on Brian Schottenheimer: "I'm sorry, but can you tell me what Schottenheimer did with the Jets that would give confidence that he can be the one to turn this offense around and to get (quarterback) Sam Bradford going? He had better talent to work with in New York than he'll have right away in St. Louis. So we'll see what he can get done."
• Faulk on the future of the Rams' franchise: Is he worried that the team will move? "No, I'm not," he said.
• Does Faulk believe the Rams will stay in St. Louis? "I hope so. I hope that's the case. I would hate to see the city without the team," he said.
• Faulk on the retirement of Mike Martz, his former head coach in St. Louis: "I know that he has a lot to offer. It's bad that he takes a knock for being a passing guy, when you look at today's NFL. And what he did and how we did it — that's what everybody's doing right now."
• Faulk defending Martz's work as offensive coordinator in Chicago: "Martz was working with lesser talent than he's accustomed to working with. And I believe that (in the 2010 season) they were playing in the NFC championship, at home, against the Packers. With Caleb Hanie in the game after Jay Cutler went down. And they were in the game. If he didn't do a good job, they should have let him go then. Other than (running back) Matt Forte, there wasn't anyone that was fear inducing. I'm defending Mike because I can only imagine how hard it was to game plan with what he had. Look at what Green Bay put on the field offensively. Look at what Detroit put on the field offensively. And you have to play them twice a year? Do your best. And I believe he did his best."

Faulk shouldn't talk down about Fisher. He had a good run in Tennessee and almost beat the team Faulk played for in the Super Bowl. I can understand if the Rams hired anyone without a track record like Fisher's. Granted he could've done more in Tennessee, but some of those seasons the Titans overachieved. In my opinion, the Rams made the best hire this offseason.   The way it sounds is that Faulk would likje to have someone that coaches an offensive style of football with a lot of run and gun.    

Rapper Birdman bets $5 million on the Patriots

The Super Bowl is a gamblers paradise. Bets on the game, prop bets, and just about anything you can put a wager on that pertains to the Super Bowl.

New Orleans rapper, Bryan "Birdman" Williams is looking to capitalize on the gambling craze of the Super Bowl. A man who clearly has too much money on his hands, Williams is putting $5 million dollars on the New England Patriots to win Super Bowl XLVI.

All I can say is that he's putting his money where his mouth is.

Hoke says there's no "Gentleman's Agreement" in the Big Ten

The Urban Meyer effect is up and running in the Big Ten and a couple of coaches aren’t happy about it.

This past recruiting season the new Ohio State football boss Meyer managed to flip his fair share share of recruits including Mark Dantonio’s top recruit in Se’Von Pittman. The same can be said for Bret Bielema at Wisconsin who lost prized offensive lineman Kyle Dodson on recruiting day to Ohio State.

“(Ohio State has) a new coach, and it’s different,” Dantonio told the Detroit News. “I would say it’s pretty unethical, in the end.”

Bielema echoed those sentiments after losing prized offensive lineman Kyle Dodson to Ohio State on signing day.

“There are a few things that happened early on that I made people aware of that I didn’t want to see in this league, that I had seen take place in other leagues,” Bielema said on Wednesday. “Other recruiting tactics, other recruiting practices that are illegal.

“I was very up front and was very pointed to the fact, actually reached out to Coach Meyer and shared my thoughts and concerns with him. The situation got rectified.”

According to, Bielema told Sporting News that Badgers athletic director Barry Alvarez would be talking to Big Ten commissioner Jim Delaney today in Chicago about Meyer’s tactics.

Now you may be wondering why Bielema and Dantonio are so upset in a conference that’s extremely competitive and takes great pride in their rivalries?

It all boils down to a so-called “gentleman’s agreement” amongst the Big Ten coaches.

Bielema further called Meyer’s recruiting tactics “illegal” in light of the “gentleman’s agreement” which says that no coach in the Big Ten will actively go after a recruit that is already verbally committed to another Big Ten school.

Not all Big Ten coaches though agree on this “gentlemen’s agreement” and on those coaches is Michigan’s Brady Hoke…

“As far as I’ve known, it’s always been fair game until they sign,” said Hoke, who’s been in the league one year as a head coach and seven as an assistant. “I don’t have as much a problem with that and, hopefully, we don’t get too many of those that go away from you.

“But, I don’t think there needs to be an agreement, to be honest with you. Kids are going to be kids. They’re 18 years old, 17 years old. As long as everything has been handled in an ethical manner and professional manner, and by the rules, I don’t have a problem with it.”

Now Hoke hasn’t experienced the same draw backs that Dantonio and Bielema have experienced with recruits flipping to Ohio State. In fact Hoke was able to flip five-star offensive lineman Kyle Kalis from Ohio State prior to Meyer being announced as the new head coach.

Again though in a competitive conference with top notch coaches it should be expected that programs are going to do everything they possibly can to make their teams better. This includes trying to flip rival schools recruits to their own.

In the end a verbal commitment means nothing. Hoke isn't about making excuses about anything. He knows the game and isn't going to whine about anything.

Now about those 16 scholarships OSU had open and oversigning at 25 commitments is another story.

Home of Junior Hemingway burglarized

Former Michigan receiver Junior Hemingway having one of the worse moments of his life right now.

The family home in Conway, South Carolina was robbed for the second time in four months. Thieves knocked down the front door and stole nearly $5,000 in goods. That included a large screen television and several of Hemingway's Michigan mementos, which included his jerseys and bowl rings. his Sugar Bowl MVP trophy was left behind.

"The sad thing is, this stuff just can't be replaced," Hemingway father Kenneth Hemingway said.

It's not the dollar value attached to the crime, it's the sentimental value of it. Hopefully the people who did this will be brought to justice and the items can be recovered.    

The feuding Fielders

Cecil Fielder had a lot to say when his baseball prodigy son, Prince, signed his 9 year, $214 million dollar mega-contract with the Detroit Tigers. Cecil went as far to say that the relationship has "improved" and that "time heals all wounds".

Prince on the other hand wouldn't answer questions about him and his father at his introductory press conference, instead focusing on him being a Tiger.

The common thread between the two is that both will have played for the Tigers and they're both heavyweight home run hitters. Beyond that there is nothing between the two.

In an interview in the Detroit Free Press, Cecil spoke about the still strained relationship and about Prince as a man before being inducted into the Ted Williams Hall of Fame.

“But I do not know if it’s improving,” Fielder said tonight, before being inducted into the Ted Williams Hitters Hall of Fame with former New York Yankees teammate Tino Martinez. “I worry how he’s grown as a man.”

The father expressed “disappointment” with his son over the estranged relationship he said his son had with “the whole family.” The father said his son did not communicate with anybody on either side of his extended family.

Cecil Fielder, who said his son had him “thrown out” of a family room at Turner Field in Atlanta a couple of years ago, said he had no plans to attend any Tigers game, despite his affection for owner Mike Ilitch.

“I’m not going nowhere around it,” Fielder said. “Mr. Ilitch is my man, but there’s been some awful (stuff). I don’t want to get in the position where he throws me out of the damn stadium. I’ll have a chance to see him on TV.”

“He can’t hide behind (agent) Scott Boras with ‘no comment’ to all the questions,” Fielder said. “I say he has to grow up, and sooner or later, he will grow up. You don’t want to stay stuck in whatever cocoon you are in, stay stuck in your cocoon.”

A fractured relationship. There's a shocker. And with the gas can Cecil just broke out, it's not going to improve any time in the near future. That might've been an opinion he wanted to keep to himself and let the writers say that.

As far as Prince goes, at some point he has to extend an olive branch to his father. Yes, he did some things that might take a long time to get over, but as a man that is something you get over. I'm not saying do it right away, but sometime in the future.

I know this from personal this from personal experience and you don't want to wait until a loved one is on their deathbed to make peace with them.

In the meantime, Cecil should just stay mum on the subject of his son.