Tuesday, March 10, 2009

The Ultimate Power Rankings, March 10

Every sports site and channel seems to publish a constant stream of power rankings (I am guilty considering I have a weekly California Division I college basketball power ranking on CBS2.com), so I have decided to add the Ultimate Power Rankings here occasionally. This week's top 10 are as follows, in no particular order, and there are only 9:

Oklahoma Women's Basketball player Courtney Paris took the microphone at Senior Night and declared that if the Sooners do not win the national championship this season, she will return her scholarship to the university. It has been reported that this is worth about $64,000. My head is spinning with follow up comments on this one: "Suck on that, Jim Calhoun!" $64,000 for room, board, books, fees and meals at OU? How much does this girl eat (a lot, by the way)? Oklahoma lost by 30 to the undefeated Connecticut early in the season, so I hope Paris has a good job lined up after graduation (does the WNBA even pay $64,000 year?).

Gonzaga led the WCC men's final game against St. Mary's 1-0 with 20 minutes to go in the first half. How? Apparently a St. Mary's player dunked a ball in warm up and was assessed a technical foul and the Zags made the shot before the tip-off. Imagine if St. Mary's had lost by 1. Fortunately they doused that fire early and went out and lost by 100 (approximately).

Dwyane Wade is pretty good, whether he knows how to spell "Dwayne" properly or not. Monday's finish was one of the great endings to an NBA game in a long, long time, and it was one of three buzzer beating 3-three pointers for Wade in this game alone! How good is that LeBron vs. Wade second round series going to be?

There is nothing better than blind homer announcers. On AM710 yesterday (ESPN radio in L.A.), they had three local NBA "experts" talking about the Lakers and Andrew Bynum's return. One guy said that having him get hurt and not return till the playoffs have already begun is a blessing in disguise because he will have to come back and play with the second team until he shows he is ready to start (if ever). So this guy said that this is all a good thing because of what a boon he'll be to the Lakers' second team. Now that is how you find some silver lining.

My ultimate frisbee team, Slow Children at Play, won the L.A. Winter league title this weekend after last year going 0-the season, including being beaten 15-0 in one game. But that's not the best part. In the final game, we were down 14-7 (game to 15, win by 2) and we came back to win 18-16 in easily the most dramatic sporting event I have ever been a part of. I kid you not, people rushed the field.

I absolutely love all of the "bubble watch" conjecture that is all over everywhere right now. This is funny because of how much I can't stand mock drafts, which are essentially the same thing. I think the difference is that the NCAA tourney talk starts in earnest about two weeks before selection Sunday and by that time the guesses are fairly accurate and informed. While the mock drafts will start 4-5 months before, when the guesses are like a monkey throwing poo at a draft board and then measuring which players got more crap on their faces.

The Netherlands beat the Dominican Republic in the World Baseball Classic despite having Sidney Ponson as their only Major League star, with the term "star" used extraordinarily loosely. The Dominican team has 23 Major Leaguers. That's a 2008-sized upset and perhaps the first really good one of 2009. They play a rematch-elimination game against one another today. Best of all, the Netherlands dropped Andruw Jones from their team since the last WBC. How far have you fallen if the Netherlands would rather not have you on their team and you are a former Major League Baseball Player of the Year, Rookie of the Year and 10-time consecutive Gold Glove winner?

March Madness is here. Yesterday I watched five college basketball games, four of which were tournament finals with the winners going to the Big Dance. Today around 10 a.m. when I first went to check on who was playing today and when, there were already two conference tournament games underway. Spectacular.

The New York Jets were supposedly a team that "needed" to sign Terrell Owens. And when you consider that they haven't won a Super Bowl in 40 years, maybe the risk of a little controversy in the clubhouse would be worth signing a top-line talent. After all, they did dump their franchise quarterback and send him off to a division rival in order to sign Brett Favre just a year ago, so they're not afraid of making a splash. But despite decades of losing and frustration and embarrassment, a Jets official came out last week and said, "What message are we sending to the team if it signed Owens?” That's how big of an a-hole Terrell Owens is. After allowing star receiver Laveranues Coles to leave via free agency, essentially they said they'd rather not have any wide receivers than have have T.O. on their team. How can you not love the Jets after this?

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