2011 NBA Playoff Predictions, Round 2

Saturday, April 30, 2011

My Round one picks were here.

Heat over Celtics in 6
Bulls over Hawks in 5
Lakers over Mavericks in 7
Thunder over Memphis in 5

TBOR Athlete of the Month - April, 2011 +2005 Athlete of the Year

Friday, April 29, 2011

March, and through it, the rest of 2011, is here.

Danielle Adams

Runners-up: Charl Schwartzel, Troy Tulowitzki, Lance Berkman

4 months down, 8 to go in the race for 2011 TBOR Athlete of the Year.

In 2005, the winner was Reggie Bush (homer, cough, cough)

January: Matt Leinart (Corey Dillon, Jeremiah Trotter, Marat Safin)
February: Rodney Harrison (Allen Iverson, Jeff Gordon, David Toms)
March: Sean May (Tiger Woods, Andrew Bogut, Deron Williams)
April: Tiger Woods (Johan Santana, Brian Roberts, Tracey McGrady)
May: Brian Roberts (Ray Allen, Dontrelle Willis, Bobby Abreu)
June: Annika Sorenstam (Asafa Powell, Tim Duncan, Floyd Mayweather)
July: Lance Armstrong (Venus Williams, Bobby Abreu, Jermaine Taylor)
August: Felix Hernandez (Jason Giambi, Phil Mickelson, Vlad Guerrero)
September: Roger Federer (Donovan McNabb, David Ortiz, Jimmy Rollins)
October: Jermaine Dye (Reggie Sanders, Reggie Bush, Roy Oswalt)
November: Reggie Bush (Ladanian Tomlinson, Vince Young, Jermaine Taylor)
December: Peyton Manning, Allen Iverson, Elton Brand, Shaun Alexander)

2011 Mock NFL Draft/Royal Wedding Preview (or Please, Please, Please Don't Draft Ryan Mallett)

Monday, April 25, 2011

Almost certainly, you know one of the following two things.  Almost as certainly, at least one of them is entirely unimportant to you.  If you vibe both - you should be writing this piece instead of me.

1. This weekend is wall-to-wall coverage of the NFL Draft, perhaps my favorite annual event.  I've got my Kiper bluebook; I've got rankings from Mayock, McShay, Rang, and Lande.  My DVR is set for a total of 112 hours of coverage on ESPN/ESPN2/ESPNU/NFL Net including pre-shows, recaps, and the actual event.  I can absolutely tell you the players I like outside of the top tier; hopefully, some of whom will wind up in San Francisco:

QB Andy Dalton
RB DeMarco Murray/Roy Helu
DT Stephen Paea
DE/OLB Cam Jordan/Jabaal Sheard/Justin Houston (can Houston or Sheard play in a 3-4?)
DB Jimmy Smith

2. And this weekend is wall-to-wall coverage of the Royal Wedding.  About which I know nothing.

But there's got to be a way to mash them up; so here's my round one mock, if also on the board were figures from the Royal Wedding.  I'm not predicting, I'm turning in my own cards for each team. Edit - for those of you so inclined, I've got Kiper's last mock, his draft day mock, and I'll be editing in those picks into the post.  I'm about to watch Mayock's mock from Wednesday night, I'll edit that in too. 

1. Carolina    Marcell Dareus   DT   Alabama
-The top player on Mayock's board; Carolina's top need.  They're supposed to go with Newton, and I'm hoping they do - as the draft starts, I am rooting like a crazy person for those two top QB to go off the board so I don't have to worry about taking them. (Newton, word is its the owner's call.  Good result for me)Mayock says Newton.  A consensus has formed.  They can have him.  Now someone needs to come take Gabbert away from my Niners.  Please. 

2. Denver  Kate Middleton

There is no way the Broncos turn down the celebripower of pairing Duchess Kate with Tim Tebow; the gossip alone whenever they're seen together would cause TMZ to open up a whole branch office outside Mile High.  They turn in the card before Goodell finishes announcing that they're on the clock.  (In the read world they've moved to a 4-3 and, assuming Newton goes one, take Dareus at 2.  If somehow Dareus goes 1, as I'd have Carolina do, Denver's looking to deal down with someone who wants to snake Von Miller from the Bills, as you don't see them taking Fairley this high.) Kate doesn't have Diana-upside, but she's a real high character kid; her position coaches rave about her dependability. (Miller, Peter King is saying it too, so obviously that's what Denver is saying as of draft day)Miller - this is a good result for me, as the Bills might go Peterson ahead of Miller, but apparently will go Dareus ahead of Peterson.

3. Buffalo  OLB   Von Miller   Texas A&M
-There's going to be some sentiment in the building for Prince William, he'd make it easier to court the royalists in the Toronto fan base, but Miller's the second rated player on almost everyone's board (mine included).  He fits Buffalo's need to the extent that, were they to have the top pick, he'd be consensus to go first overall. (Dareus, apparently he's top player on Buffalo's board, if Dareus is gone, there's a Peterson/Miller debate - if it falls this way they go Dareus)Dareus

4. Cincinnati  WR  AJ Green  Georgia
-The last thing Mike Brown wants is the hassle of a protracted royal holdout, and William would have more twitter followers than Ochocinco and TO combined.  The Bengals are moving to a west coast offense, neither of the two big QB at the top of the draft is a particularly good fit (if they go QB, I'd guess Gabbert) but they could use an X receiver, and that's Green (and not Julio Jones, note).(Green, and they go west coast QB with their second pick, Dalton/Ponder)Green.  Lot of Kiper/Mayock late consensus.

5. Arizona   QB  Blaine Gabbert  Missouri
-Prince William is still on the board and Kiper's hair is about to explode as he sits untaken in the draft room - but not unreasonable concern about blowback from the really rabid anti-immigrant locals causes the Cards to go native and address their biggest need.  Here's where the "I'm turning in the card" element of this breaks down; I wouldn't take a QB in the top 15; but with both highly touted guys still on the board in this exercise, Arizona can't pass up on one of them.  I guess I like Gabbert a little more than Newton. (Peterson.  Ah, hell.  Kiper's got this as a deal down, Cards like Gabbert but think they can bump back and get him, and teams like Houston want to jump ahead of my Niners to get Peterson.  Goddamn Arizona.  I've become a little married to Peterson.  I'd rather take Prince than Quinn if that's the choice on the board.)Peterson.  Goddamn.  I've had Niners taking Peterson for 3 months, and here we are losing him two spots ahead to a division rival.  Goddamn.   

6. Cleveland  Prince William

Holmgren's jumping up and down.  They've already written the headline in the Plain Dealer:


William's the type of solid locker room presence that any team could use.  More likely to take his talents to a Euclid Kiwanis Club pancake breakfast than to South Beach. (Jones, which makes sense.)Jones.  Dead agreement between Kiper/Mayock, if I enter a contest, I'm going this way. 

7. San Francisco  Patrick Peterson  CB  LSU
A year ago, Todd McShay's final mock had my Niners taking Jimmy Clausen.  Here's what I wrote at the time:

Please, please, please don't pick Jimmy Clausen.

I don't like Alex Smith - he's a backup.  So's David Carr. I think so is Jimmy Clausen - I think Clausen's a backup in waiting and I do not want him.  Two linemen and a corner.  Thank you.

Right now, Russ Lande's mock has us taking Ryan Mallett.  So, let me be clear.

Please, please, please don't pick Ryan Mallett.  

Or Blaine Gabbert.  Or Cam Newton, even though, if he were still on the board at #7, I can't say I wouldn't understand.  It's the first draft of the new regime; I very much want to believe in Jim Harbaugh and that we've turned a corner, and there aren't many outcomes this week that could lead to my disenchantment so early in his tenure.  Taking Ryan Mallett 7th overall would be such an outcome.  I like Andy Dalton in the second round if he's on the board, in the way I liked Colt McCoy last year, but not really enough to move up to get him, and the late chatter is that's what would be required.  This is the wrong verse to sing here, but if we went 1-15 and got Andrew Luck, I think he wins us a Super Bowl. 

My hope, during the entirety of the draft process, was the board would fall in a way that allows us to take Peterson, my top rated player; Kiper's top rated player; Rang's top rated player.  He's the corner we didn't get last year.  

If he's gone, that probably means one of those QB is still there - and then I'll be rooting hard for a trade down, as opposed to taking Quinn, Amukamara, or one of the quarterbacks.  My goal here is Peterson at 7, then whomever is available among Dalton/Sheard/Houston at pick 45, if I could be convinced that Sheard/Houston could play in our 3-4.  Houston's more likely.  Kiper's mock has all of them gone by then, hopefully one will slide through - if not, I'd argue for Paea ahead of Kaepernick, but don't hate the value of the QB there as opposed to my fear were we to trade down - that we're moving back for Locker.  (Gabbert.  No.  No.  No.  No.  No.  No.)Gabbert.  No.  No.  No.  No.  No. 

8. Tennessee  Vince You...I mean, Cam Newton  QB  Auburn
-They already have the marketing campaign; just cross out VY, write in Cam and they're ready to roll in Nashville.  More likely is Newton's off the board and they're taking his teammate Fairley. (Fairley)Fairley. 

9. Dallas  Prince Harry

Dallas has big needs for a pass rusher (and Robert Quinn's on the board, so is Bowers for that matter, and Jerry likes to roll the die) and a right tackle (and Castonzo's on the board, so is my guy from SC, Smith, for that matter, and Jerry likes to roll the die).  But he jumps all over Harry; he likes his military bonafides, the crazy swagger and the chance to be not just America's team but the UK's as well.  The international branding is way more than he can pass up and its an easy pick.  Plus, the youthful Nazi stuff won't play too badly in Big D.  He's the new face of the Cowboys. (Jordan - interesting, Kiper also suggests trade down, I would think they've got to get a tackle, my guy from USC seems like someone they'd like, maybe a deal down to still get him)Smith, which is who I think Dallas takes.

10. Washington  Nick Fairley  DT  Auburn
-The Skins could deal down and look for Locker or Mallett if they like him more; they could deal up to get one of the two top QB; they could stay here and take Castonzo - but if Fairley's on the board, that's hard value to walk away from. (Quinn - no quarterback for the Skins?  Do they like Gabbert?  Would they deal into my spot to get him, we come down here and take Prince?  In the event Peterson's gone, of course.)Amukamara - if the Skins get him and I get Gabbert I'm kicking my desk. 

11. Houston  Robert Quinn  DE  North Carolina
-The Texans are pretty married to a front 7 improvement, Quinn's the best player on the board (although I don't want him at #7 given his lack of college production) so they take him. (Aldon Smith.  I'm gonna guess Kiper's thinking this is who deals with Arizona to get Peterson.  This is too high for Smith.)Quinn.  No question, if the board falls like this it's Quinn. 

12. Minnesota   Prince Charles
-Both the top offensive linemen are available here, and now is when you're looking hard at Mallett and Locker, but the Vikes hear "old man with history of sex scandals" and think it's Favre coming out of retirement again.  Plus - it's a Prince in Minnesota, and I think there's some type of local ordinance that says they can't pass him up.  Game, blouses. (Locker - Kiper has the Vikes dealing down and getting him a little later.  That makes sense, I don't know who would move up to 12 - maybe only if Quinn or Prince, as is the case here, is still on the board.)Aldon Smith.  Still a little high for me.

13. Detroit  Anthony Castonzo  T  Boston College
Kiper's got Amakamara going here, and if Peterson's gone when my team comes around, I would not be surprised if we take him - but if the board falls like this, the top lineman is still there to protect Stafford and they don't turn it down. (Smith, as in my tackle.  He's jumped back over Castonzo on everyone's board in the past week, he's moved up a tick, the BC kid down a tick)Castonzo.  I agree, if Smith's gone, and I agree with Mayock, it's Castonzo. 

14. St Louis  Julio Jones WR  Alabama
I don't love Jones, he's a little slow for a number one receiver, but the Rams are desperate and in the middle of the first round he's an easy pick. (Liuget)Liuget.

15. Miami  Queen Elizabeth II
This is all but done; word is the Queen's picked out a nice retirement community in Boca Raton; her posse's been holed up in Century Village for weeks; there's dance lessons, an executive golf course, and a Peggy Lee tribute cabaret act scheduled for the draft party. (Pouncey)Pouncey.

16. Jacksonville  Da'Quan Bowers  DE  Clemson  
-They need a pass rusher with one leg.  There's one available. (Kerrigan - someone will take Bowers, but it will take some guts)Kerrigan

17. New England   Cam Jordan DE Cal
-They take the pass rusher with two legs; New England's good like that. (Wilkerson - Jordan's jumped too high to still be here, which I think is right, is this a good spot for Bowers?  Is NE going to move?)Jordan.  Does he go to Minnesota instead of Smith?

18. San Diego  Chelsy Davy

The Bolts are really drafting on potential here; Davy's Harry's longtime girlfriend now ex, but there are rumors that she, perhaps this very weekend, can maneuver her way back into his good graces - and then who knows, maybe San Diego's looking at the next royal bride.  This one's all about the advance scouts as the metrics say this is an overdraft. Definitely a boom-or-bust type. (Watt, who should go below Jordan)Watt

19. New York Giants  Mike Pouncey OL  Florida
-Maybe getting a bit of a bounce (Bouncey?) off his brother's name, and in a weekend where bloodlines are respected, that's a good enough reason for a Giant team in need of dependable interior offensive line play to make this move.  The debate will be between Pouncey and Ingram, whose dad helped the Giants win that Whitney Houston SB.  I'm going to say the bloodline debate cuts against the Heisman winner, since Senior's spent the past ten years in a jumpsuit.  It would be like William marrying Sarah Ferguson's niece. (Castonzo - if he's here, you'd think that's how it goes, but there's going to be some Ingram chants)Ingram.  I kind of agree, if Pouncey's gone, I think that's right. 

20. Tampa Bay  Prince Amakamara CB  Nebraska
-Will the Bucs get the best royal of all?  I don't love Prince for my Niners at 7; but in the extremely improbable event that he's still here at 20, he's not at 21; Tampa cut Talib for, I'm not sure, stabbing Brandon Marshall, I think - they get his replacement here.  Assuming Prince is gone, this might be where Jimmy Smith goes.  Perhaps Chelsy might start banging Amakamara in hopes of being named Duchess of  the Ybor Entertainment District. (Amukamara, even though I have him here, I can't believe he's still around for the Bucs at 20)Bowers.  If Jordan's gone, do the Patriots take Bowers and Smith goes here? 

21. Kansas City  Tyron Smith T USC
Smith's an injury risk, and that might knock him down this far - in a draft light on offensive linemen, the guy with the most athletic ability probably can't get past 21.(Carimi)Watkins

22. Indianapolis Corey Liuget DT  Illinois
If Ingram gets past both the Dolphins and Giants; there will be a lot of fan sentiment in Indianapolis to grab him; I'll say they get someone to clog the defensive line instead. (Solder)Solder

23. Philadelphia  Jimmy Smith  CB Colorado
I've got a bit of a crush on Smith; if Peterson is gone at 7; my hope is the Niners find a way to move down to the middle of the round and get Smith; I won't be bummed if we take Prince; I'll be a little irritated if it's Quinn; I'll be screaming if it's one of those two top quarterbacks.  And please, please, please don't take Ryan Mallett.(Smith)Carimi

24. New Orleans  Mark Ingram  RB  Alabama
If Ingram's gone, the Saints go elsewhere - but since Eddie Lee Ivory (I think) was their leading rusher last year, the value is just too much to pass up. (Bowers - does he get past the Patriots?)Taylor

25. Seattle Jake Locker QB Washington
This is probably a mistake.  The pressure on Locker would be superhigh if he stays in Seattle, and I'd assume Pete would rather have a more accurate quarterback.  They're also desperate for an offensive lineman.  But the story's too good to not root for, so let's write it down for the hell of it.  Seattle might be trying to go 2-14 to get Matt Barkley. (Dalton - this has to be a trade out, Pete's not taking Dalton at 25 and Seattle has a ton of needs, if the Bengals/Bills/and I'd guess, Niners are still QB hunting, this is a good spot to hop in for Dalton - who I really like, but I like him 15 picks from now)Austin, Mayock still has Locker on the board.

26. Baltimore  Nate Solder  T Colorado
Solder, Carimi, Sherrod are probably all going to go in the real first round; if Jimmy Smith is gone, whichever of these guys is still on the board goes to the Ravens.(Ayers)Smith.  I won't have him getting past the Eagles. 

27. Atlanta  Aldon Smith  DE  Missouri
Smith's probably off the board, and if both he and Jordan are gone, maybe the Falcons go a different way in this spot - but in this draft, he goes to Atlana.(Clayborn)Clayborn

28. New England  The Late Princess Diana
Having taken the defensive end with the first pick, the Patriots can afford to be a little indulgent with the second.  "It seems to me she lived her life like a candle in the wind," said head coach Bill Belichick.  "Plus, she's scheme diverse.  Got a nonstop motor.  Got a princess next door thing going for her. Not as outright pretty as Brady, but who could be?" (Ingram)Locker - Mayock's got a tradeout here to an unknown team.

29. Chicago  Gabe Carimi  T Wisconsin
-If any of the three aforementioned best tackles left on the board is still here - the Bears take him. (Sherrod)Baldwin.  In the first round? 

30. New York Jets  Pippa Middleton

Pippa's the flashy sister; Kate's more stable, a Marcell Dareus - a can't miss pick, maybe without a super high ceiling, but without any risk.  Pippa's more Nick Fairley, she enjoys hitting the town.  And New York is a town that can be hit.  Pippa's got huge upside; put her in Rex Ryan's scheme and she could be a havoc wreaking playmaker; HBO will not only put the Jets on Hard Knocks again; they'll also show up on Boardwalk Empire and Taxicab Confessions.  I'd bet they have to deal up about a half dozen spots to make sure they get her. Pippa's only flaw is she's on the wrong side of 20 to bang their quarterback.  (Taylor)Ayers.  I'm gonna say either Taylor or Austin is still around for the Jets. 

31. Pittsburgh  JJ Watt  DE  Wisconsin
'Cause he's the guy most victimized by my throwing in all the royals.  And if he were still available at 31 they'd have to take him.  It's been defensive guys who I've dropped as part of my bit here; this is not at all because I want them available to my Niners at 45.  Nope.  Not at all. (Williams)Williams

32. Green Bay  Muhammad Wilkerson DL Temple or Camilla Parker Bowles

They're the World Champs.  They do whatever the hell they want.  (Watkins)Dalton in a tradeout, which is how I'd guess it goes too. 

Enjoy the draft.  Long live the Queen.

Here's my entry into the Bud Light contest:

1. Newton, Cam
2. Miller, Von
3. Dareus, Marcell
4. Green, A.J.
5. Peterson, Patrick
6. Jones, Julio
7. Amukamara, Prince
8. Fairley, Nick
9. Smith, Tyron
10. Gabbert, Blaine
11. Quinn, Robert
12. Locker, Jake
13. Castonzo, Anthony
14. Liuget, Corey
15. Pouncey, Mike
16. Kerrigan, Ryan
17. Jordan, Cameron
18. Watt, J.J.
19. Ingram, Mark
20. Bowers, Da'Quan
21. Watkins, Danny
22. Solder, Nate
23. Smith, Jimmy
24. Smith, Aldon
25. Taylor, Phil
26. Austin, Marvin
27. Clayborn, Adrian
28. Dalton, Andy
29. Carimi, Gabe
30. Ayers, Akeem
31. Williams, Aaron
32. Ponder, Christian

1st and Ten - The Weekly Tendown, Special Easterdown 2011

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Dear Internet:

I was planning on a normal issue for Tendown 73; here, for example is an infograph of the google image search results for "Brian Wilson" (The Beach Boy is still holding on, but not overwhelmingly).  But that was before I saw this during my nightly viewing of Sean Hannity's television news program.  It's on one of those cable news channels.  I don't remember which, they're all basically the same, right?  I mean, it's the news.   

Good God!

With all those other wars we're, er... on (Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Christmas, Carbs) you'd think we wouldn't have time to prosecute another one.  Clearly - as a card carrying pacifist, I am against the War on Easter (but of course, I support the troops) and wanted to send an Easter shoutout to the most persecuted, most marginalized group in American history - Christians.

Here's Tendown 73.  Easterdown!

1. Evolution = Homosexuality = Nazis
Terrible, how the gay, Darwinist agenda is driving us toward totalitarianism.

2. Only 72 Hours?
There are still some, but very, very few abortions in South Dakota.  But required religious lectures might drive that number down. As would locking more women in jail.  Now, as I've written about previously, having a baby is demonstrably worse for the health of a woman than having an abortion - but still, it's important that states like Iowa officially promote abortion recovery.

3. What Establishment Clause?
Mike Huckabee says we should all listen to America's greatest historian - at gunpoint.  Don't read this complete debunking of said "historian."

4. Shouldn't We Be Doing This Already?
Why should a Congressman have to ask that all of us reflect on the importance of the Ten Commandments?

5. Finally The Truth -
Jesus hates social programs.  And the environment.  And the minimum wage.

6. When Will Those Gay Kids Stop All That Bullying!
Almost impossible to be a straight teenager in public school these days.

7. Don't Mess In Texas
I can always count on really surprising many of my students by telling them that, up until just a few years, ago, it was constitutional for states to make homosexuality against the law.  I don't use the acronym SWG (sexin' while gay) but it crosses my mind.

But even though the Supreme Court has clearly and definitively ruled on the issue, Texas keeps anti-gay sex statutes on the books.

8. You Know Who is For That?
Rick Santorum.

Non Easter related entertainment interlude.

That's a screen shot from one of this week's episodes of Happy Endings; it's a brunch scene, that's a giant plate of bacon.  Now, the table is filled with small plates similar to the one next to the giant plate of bacon; it isn't as if there are large platters of food.  Instead, in front of one character, about whom there is an ongoing joke that he's chubby, is a giant, totally unremarked about, plate of bacon.  That's a good joke.

Better than Happy Endings is Parks and Recreation, which totally stole this Thursday from both 30 Rock and The Office.  And better that that was the HBO roundtable discussion about standup comedy with Gervais, Seinfeld, Rock, and Louis CK.

I've seen four 4 star wrestling matches this week; all with juice - two from the same Big Japan show in March,
Sasaki v. Kodoka and Kasai v. Takeda; and two from the TNA PPV, a 4 1/4 War Games match, and the best major American wrestling match you're going to see all year, a 4 1/2 star Angle/Jarrett.

Now - back to the holiday celebration.

9. Gay = Criminalizing Christianity
The only way to keep Christianity legal - stop using the word gay. Instead, call them anti-Christian.

10. Half a Billion Too Little
American taxpayers gave half a billion dollars to Liberty University last year.  Not nearly enough, because we should squeeze out a bonus to the associate dean at the Liberty law school, who said the reason gay kids kill themselves is because they know what they're doing is wrong.

Ten isn't enough!  Not on Easterdown 2011!  Not when the President is...

11. Anti-God!
The President!  Hates God!

The federal government's a lost cause - but not the state governments in the south...

12. Fortunately, there's still some Christians in Mississippi
Mississippi wisely, has made the godly choice to teach abstinence only sex education; and they spend 0 state dollars on HIV;  if they have to suffer with the nation's highest teen pregnancy rate and a level of HIV that Human Rights Watch calls an "epidemic", that obviously is just part of Jesus's plan.

Okay, one more -

13. $29.95
Against gay marriage?  Have 30 bucks?  Have I got an Easter offer for you.

Well, this is awfully important too.

14. Stockpile Bibles!
For the coming Earthquakeocolypse.

No - this is the last one.  Because we could help out our friends in Texas.

15. Pray for Rain!
The Republicans are now married to the position that climate change is a liberal hoax - so the only way to deal with historic droughts - is, of course, prayer.

Ten just isn't enough.  Not on this special, special day.  Hopefully you'll take some time to reflect and remember we must be vigilant against the Islamo-fascists who attempt to enforce their religious beliefs via sharia on us; or could, at any moment.  And that would be wrong.

Good talk.  Happy Easter!

That's all for this time.  See you next time.  If there is a next time....

Your pal,


Every Warriors Team Ranked by Pythagorean Record+Strength of Schedule

Thursday, April 21, 2011

One in my series of pythagorean lists - here's every team in Warriors history ranked by regular season pythag.  The number next to the year is the pythag win total normalized for an 82 game season.  The players listed are the top in Win Shares for that season, regular season+playoffs; I've included everyone over 10, and if no one was over 10, then just the top player.  I'm changing the methodology to utilize the simple rating system from pro-basketball-reference, which adds strength of schedule to pythag. 

What's the best regular season team in Warriors history?

1.  2017  11.35 Won NBA Championship over Cavs Curry 16, Durant 15.1, Green 10.6, 
2.  2016  10.38 Lost NBA Championship to Cavs. Curry 19.8, Green 14.4, Thompson 10.5
3.  2015 10.01 Won NBA Championship over Cavs. Curry 19.8, Green 11.1, Thompson 10.7    
4. 1976 6.23 Lost in conference finals to Suns Barry 11.3, Smith 11.3,
5. 2014 5.15 Lost in playoffs to Clippers Curry 14.5
6. 1964 4.39 Lost NBA Finals to Hawks Chamberlain 28.8
7. 1956 3.82 Won NBA Championship over Pistons Arizin 14.4, Johnston 15.5
8. 1992 3.77 Lost in playoffs to Sonics Mullin 10.9
9. 1951 3.4   Lost in playoffs to Nationals Arizin 14.2
10. 1947 3.16 Won BAA Championship over Stags Fulks 18.6

11. 1973 3.12 Lost in conference finals to Lakers Barry 10.7, Thurmond 10.4,
12. 1977 3.1 Lost in playoffs to Lakers Barry 9.6
13. 1975 2.86 Won NBA Championship (Bullets). Barry 15.8
14. 1962 2.63 Lost in playoffs to Celtics Chamberlain 26.2
15. 1967 2.58 Lost NBA Finals to Sixers Barry 16,
16. 1974 2.42 Barry 10.4
17. 2008 2.38 Ellis 9
18. 1960 2.27 Lost in playoffs to Celtics Chamberlain 19.1, Gola 11, Arizin, 10.9
19. 1994 1.76 Lost in playoffs to Suns Sprewell 8, Webber 8
20. 1991 1.72 Lost in playoffs to Lakers Mullin 13, Hardaway 11.1

21. 1957 1.54 Lost in playoffs Arizin 12.4, Johnston 13.6
22. 2013 1.32 Lost in playoffs to Spurs Curry 12.9
23.  1972 .92 Lost in playoffs to Bucks Mullins 10.1
24. 1961 .89 Lost in playoffs to Nationals Chamberlain 19.5,
25. 1948 .69  Lost BAA Finals to Bullets  Dallmar 8.6
26. 1982 .8 King 8.7
27. 1979 .46 Lucas 7.9
28. 1978 .41 Barry 9.7
29. 1949 .21 Lost in playoffs to Capitols Sadowski 10.6
30. 1958 .2 Lost in playoffs to Celtics Johnston 12

31. 2007 -.01 Lost in playoffs to Jazz Davis 8.7
32. 2004 -.07 Dampier 8.9
33. 1955 -.19 Johnston 15.4
34. 1989 -.59 Lost in playoffs to Suns Mullin 11.5
35. 2003 -.59 Jamison 8.5
36. 1968 -.67 LaRusso 8.6
37. 1971 -.83 Lost in playoffs to Bucks Lucas 10.9
38. 1993 -.94 Hardaway 7.5
39. 1952 -1.08 Lost in playoffs to Nationals Arizin 16.5
40. 2006 -1.11 Richardson 7.3

41. 1981 -1.41 King 9.1
42. 1996 -1.42 Armstrong 7
43. 1969 -1.53 Lost in playoffs to Lakers Mullins 10.1
44. 2005 -1.74 Richardson 5.7
45. 1963 -1.86 Chamberlain 20.9
46. 1954 -1.89 Johnston 18.9
47. 2011 -2 Curry 6.6
48. 1950 -2.27 Lost in Playoffs to Nationals Mogus 7.9
49. 1959 -2.29 Arizin 13
50. 1966 -2.36 Barry 10.4

51. 1987 -2.53 Lost in playoffs to Lakers Floyd 11.2
52. 1990 -2.55 Mullin 10.2
53. 1999 -2.63 Marshall 3, Starks 3, Mills 3
54. 2012 -2.79 Lee 5.0
55. 2010 -3.27 Maggette 6.3
56. 1984 -3.35 Short 6
57. 1983 -3.48 Carroll 7
58. 1986 -3.59 Floyd 7.5
59. 2009 -3.8 Biedrins 5.4
60. 1970 -4.15 Lucas 7.6

61. 1980 -4.2 Parker 6.8
62. 2002 -4.8 Jamison 6.4
63. 1997 -4.9 Sprewell 8.1
64. 1995 -4.91 Hardaway 5.1
65. 1965 -5.5 Chamberlain 7.5
66. 1985 -7.21 Short 6.2
67. 2000 -7.62 Marshall 3.8
68. 1953 -7.75 Johnston 15.3
69. 2001 -8.11 Jamison 6.7
70. 1988 -8.38 Higgins 5.7

71. 1998 -9.2 Marshall 4.2

Every USC Football Team Ranked by Pythagorean Record+Strength of Schedule

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

College football reference has a ratings system combining pythagorean record and strength of schedule.  Works for me.  Here is the history of USC football.  

  1. 1972 30.33 Won National Title, Won Rose Bowl Rae, Cunningham, ADavis, Swann, Young,
  2. 1931 28.05 Won Rose Bowl, Shaver
  3. 1932 26.25 Won Rose Bowl, Griffith, Brown
  4. 2004 26.06 Won National Title, Won Orange Bowl Leinart, White, Bush, Byrd, Smith, Jarrett, Tatupu, Bing
  5. 1978 25.51 Won National Title, Won Rose Bowl McDonald, White, Cain, Allen, Budde, Van Horne, Munoz, Banks, Lott, Smith
  6. 2005 24.57 Lost Rose Bowl Leinart, Bush, White, Smith, Jarrett, Byrd, Bing, Maualuga, Rivers, Rucker
  7. 2002 24.19 Won Orange Bowl Palmer, Fargas, Colbert, Williams, Polamalu
  8. 1952 24.06 Won Rose Bowl Bozanic, Goux
  9. 1979 23.95 Won Rose Bowl McDonald, White, Allen, Budde, Van Horne, Banks, Lott, Smith, Browner
  10. 1962 23.29 Won National Title, Won Rose Bowl Beathard
  11. 2003 23.14 Won National Title, Won Rose Bowl, Leinart, White, Bush, Colbert, Williams, Byrd, Tatupu, Bing, Rucker, Patterson,
  12. 2008 22.24 Won Rose Bowl Sanchez, McKnight, Havili, Maualuga, Cushing,
  13. 1988 22.2 Lost Rose Bowl Peete, Seau, Carrier
  14. 1969 21.93 Won Rose Bowl, Jones, Davis, Chandler, 
  15. 1982 21.05 Salisbury, Matthews, Mosebar, Bickett, Del Rio, Browner
  16. 1976 21.01 Won Rose Bowl Evans, Bell, White, Budde, Powell, Martin, Matthews, Thurman
  17. 1974 20.9 Won Rose Bowl Haden, Bell, Davis, Powell, Matthews
  18. 1947 20.68 Lost Rose Bowl Salata
  19. 1965 20.65 Winslow, Garrett, Yary,
  20. 1929 20.48 Won Rose Bowl Shaver
  21. 1949 20.47 Gifford
  22. 2006 20.36 Won Rose Bowl Booty, Gable, Jarrett, Smith, Davis, Havili, Mays, Maualuga, Cushing
  23. 1967 20.33 Won Rose Bowl Sogge, Simpson, Yary,
  24. 1933 19.91
  25. 1930 19.89
  26. 1980 19.82 Adams, Allen, Foster, Matthews, Mosebar, Van Horne, Browner, Banks, Lott, Smith
  27. 1973 19.64 Lost Rose Bowl Haden, Davis, Swann,
  28. 1970 19.6 Jones, Cunningham, Davis, Chandler, Young,
  29. 1938 18.35 Won Rose Bowl
  30. 1989 18.32 Won Rose Bowl Marinovich, Seau, Carrier,
  31. 2007 18.1 Won Rose Bowl Booty, Havili, Johnson, Davis, Maualuga, Mays,
  32. 1964 17.84 Fertig, Garrett
  33. 1955 17.38 Arnett
  34. 2016 17.27 Won Rose Bowl, Darnold, Smith-Schuster, Jones, Jackson, Smith
  35. 1939 17 Won Rose Bowl
  36. 1977 16.95 Won Bluebonnet Bowl Hertel, White, Tatupu, Budde, Munoz, Matthews, Thurman, Lott
  37. 1971 16.63 Jones, Cunningham, Swann, Young,
  38. 1968 16.62 Lost Rose Bowl Sogge, Simpson, Chandler,
  39. 1928 16.49
  40. 1926 16.38
  41. 1963 15.77 Beathard, Garrett,
  42. 1927 15.68
  43. 1966 15.54 Lost Rose Bowl Winslow, Yary,
  44. 1948 15.38
  45. 1981 15.17 Lost Fiesta Bowl Mazur, Allen, Foster, Matthews, Mosebar, Banks, Del Rio, Browner
  46. 1959 14.86 Prukop, Mix
  47. 2011 14.83 Barkley, Tyler, Woods, Kalil, Farmer, McDonald
  48. 1956 14.67 Arnett
  49. 2013 14.17 Won Las Vegas Bowl Kessler, Lee, Allen, Agholor
  50. 1951 14.11
  51. 1975 13.49 Won Liberty Bowl Evans, Bell, Powell, Martin, Matthews, Thurman
  52. 1936 13.25
  53. 1954 13.22 Lost Rose Bowl Arnett
  54. 1987 12.96 Peete, Carrier
  55. 1925 12.85
  56. 1993 12.76 Won Freedom Bowl Johnson, Morton, Boselli, McGinest, Sehorn, Knight
  57. 1998 12.73 Lost Sun Bowl Fox, Morton, Soward, Claiborne,
  58. 2017 12.53 Lost Cotton Bowl: Darnold, Jones, Smith, Marshall, Gustin
  59. 1986 12.45 Lost Citrus Bowl Peete, Bregel, McDonald
  60. 1994 12.41 Won Cotton Bowl Johnson, Johnson, Boselli, Russell, Kelly, Knight
  61. 2015 11.65 Lost Holiday Bowl. Kessler, Davis, Jones, Smith-Schuster, Cravens, 
  62. 1995 11.47 Won Rose Bowl Wachholtz, Johnson, Russell, Kelly, Knight,
  63. 1990 11.42 Lost Sun Bowl Marinovich, Ervins, Morton, Deese, Harlow,
  64. 1924 11.32 Won LA Christmas Festival
  65. 1953 11.05 Bozanic
  66. 1992 10.94 Lost Freedom Bowl Johnson, Conway, Morton, Boselli, McGinest, Sehorn
  67. 2012 10.62 Lost Sun Bowl Barkley, Lee, Woods, Redd, McDonald
  68. 1997 10.22 Fox, Soward, Claiborne, Kelly,
  69. 1944 10.17 Won Rose Bowl
  70. 1922 10.08 Won Rose Bowl
  71. 1923 9.96
  72. 2010 9.7 Barkley, Tyler, Havili, McDonald, Galippo,
  73. 1984 9.39 Won Rose Bowl Green Bregel, Ruettgers, Bickett, Del Rio, McDonald
  74. 2009 9.11 Won Emerald Bowl Barkley, McKnight, Havili, Mays,
  75. 1946 9.11
  76. 2001 8.91 Lost Las Vegas Bowl Palmer, Colbert, Cody, Polamalu
  77. 1996 8.23 Otton, Russell, Kelly
  78. 1941 7.78
  79. 1940 7.69
  80. 1937 7.64
  81. 1942 7.41
  82. 1985 6.62 Lost Aloha Bowl Salisbury, Bregel, McDonald
  83. 1958 5.74 Wood, Mix
  84. 1991 5.27 Perry, Morton, Conway, Boselli, Deese, McGinest,
  85. 1935 4.79
  86. 1999 4.62 Palmer, Soward, Polamalu
  87. 2000 4.37 Palmer, Colbert, Polamalu
  88. 1934 3.24
  89. 1943 2.83 Won Rose Bowl
  90. 1960 2.64 Prukop,
  91. 1950 2.06
  92. 1983 2.04 Salisbury, Ruettgers, Bickett, Del Rio,
  93. 1961 1.41 Nelsen
  94. 1945 -1.28 Lost Rose Bowl
  95. 1957 -3.07 Wood, Mix 

The Weekly Tendown April 10-16 2011

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Dear Internet:

Yesterday, not too far from my house, the current leader in the race to be the Republican candidate for President of the United States spoke to a receptive crowd of his intellectual equals.

I'm being unfair?  Donald Trump isn't really the current favorite to be the GOP nominee - it's gotta be Mitt or Newt or Huckabee or some other non-Trump?


...for the first time in three months, when Mike Huckabee had a tenpoint
lead over Mitt Romney and Sarah Palin, PPP has found a candidate who puts
serious distance between himself and the rest of the field: Donald Trump.

Trump leads with 26% over Huckabee’s 17%, Romney’s 15%, Newt Gingrich’s 11%,
Palin’s 8%, Ron Paul’s 5%, and Tim Pawlenty and Michele Bachmann’s 4%.
23% of these voters say they would not be willing to vote for a candidate who stated
clearly that Obama was born in the U.S. 38% say they would, and a 39% plurality are
not sure.

Among the hardcore birthers, Trump leads with 37%, almost three times as
much support as anyone else.

So, good luck with that.  I am entirely for a Trump/Palin ticket.  Hell, I'd be fine with them winning the thing.  If that's who we are, let's show the full reptilian face.

Here's Tendown 72.

1. Count Five?  Really?  

Barry Bonds was convicted of obstruction of justice this week.

Unless this is your first Tendown, you probably know my view that virtually every piece of conventional wisdom about the steroid scandal is wrong.  We've spent the past ten years massively shifting wealth upward, torturing those suspected of crimes, prosecuting 2 and perhaps now 3 wars that we've decided to pay for by slicing social services, and trying to put Barry Bonds in jail for hitting too many home runs.  Not unlike the way a Christian conservative sees the repeal of "don't ask don't tell" as a sign of the apocalypse; I see making a national priority the targeting of baseball players for taking the wrong kind of drugs as a sign of the decline and fall of the American Empire.

But that's the big picture.  In the small picture - Barry Bonds was convicted of a very specific crime this week; a jury decision that, given the nature of the crime, we can analyze almost in its entirely through reading the instructions given to that jury.

Which are below.  The instructions themselves are italicized and I have not edited them.  I will insert my comments in bold.


(18 U.S.C. § 1503)

The defendant is charged in Count Five with obstruction of justice in violation of 18 U.S.C.
§ 1503. In order for the defendant to be found guilty of Count 5, the government must prove each of the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:

1. The defendant corruptly, that is, for the purpose of obstructing justice,
2. obstructed, influenced, or impeded, or endeavored to obstruct, influence, or impede the
grand jury proceeding in which defendant testified,
3. by knowingly giving material testimony that was intentionally evasive, false, or

A statement was material if it had a natural tendency to influence, or was capable of influencing,
the decision of the grand jury.

The government alleges that the underlined portion of the following statements constitute
material testimony that was intentionally evasive, false or misleading. In order for the defendant to be
found guilty of Count 5, you must all agree that one or more of the following statements was material
and intentionally evasive, false or misleading, with all of you unanimously agreeing as to which
statement or statements so qualify:

1. The Statement Contained in Count One
2. The Statement Contained in Count Two
3. The Statement Contained in Count Three

So, recognize the elements of obstruction of justice.  The testimony you're about to read from Bonds has to be intentionally targeted to obstruct justice.  It can't just be that Bonds doesn't know how to answer a question or is embarrassed or uncomfortable.  He has to be trying to obstruct justice.  Further, the testimony has to be material - meaning it has to be important to that particular case.  What was that case?  That grand jury was targeting BALCO - whose founder, Victor Conte, eventually did four months in jail.  So - somewhere in this transcript below, Bonds had to be intentionally trying to obstruct justice in a way that could have influenced the grand jury - which again, wasn't after him - it was after BALCO.  This isn't a perjury question - it's not "Barry lied".

4. Statement A:

Q: Let me move on to a different topic. And I think you’ve testified to this. But I want to make
sure it’s crystal clear. Every time you got the flax seed oil and the cream, did you get it in person
from Greg?

A: Yes.

Q: Is that fair?

A: Yes.

Q: And where would you typically get it? Where would you guys be when he would hand
it to you generally?

A In front of my locker, sitting in my chair.

Q: Did he ever come to your home and give it to you?

A: Oh, no, no, no. It was always at the ballpark.

So, clearly it's not this one.  The government asked questions.  Bonds answered them.

5. Statement B:

Q: …Do you remember how often he recommended to you about, approximately, that you take
this cream, this lotion?

A: I can’t recall. I don’t – I wish I could. I just can’t . . . I just know it wasn’t often. I just think
it was more when I was exhausted or tired than like a regular regimen. You know, it was like
if I was really sore or something, really tired…that’s – that’s --- that’s all I can remember about

Q: … would you say it was more or less often or about the same as the amount of times you took
the liquid, the flax seed oil, the thing you understood to be flax seed oil?

A: I don’t know. I never kept track of that stuff. I’m sorry. I didn’t sit there and monitor that

Almost as clearly, it's not this one.  Bonds doesn't provide a numerical answer; he says he doesn't recall, which is an answer to the question.  If answering "I don't recall" when giving sworn testimony is a felony, Alberto Gonzalez would be doing life.

6. Statement C:

Q: Did Greg ever give you anything that required a syringe to inject yourself with?

A: I’ve only had one doctor touch me. And that’s my only personal doctor. Greg, like I said, we
don’t get into each others’ personal lives. We’re friends, but I don’t – we don’t sit around and
talk baseball, because he knows I don’t want – don’t come to my house talking baseball. If you
want to come to my house and talk about fishing, some other stuff, we’ll be good friends, you
come around talking about baseball, you go on. I don’t talk about his business. You know what
I mean? …

Q: Right.

A: That’s what keeps our friendship. You know, I am sorry, but that – you know, that – I was
a celebrity child, not just in baseball by my own instincts. I became a celebrity child with a
famous father. I just don’t get into other people’s business because of my father’s situation, you

Apparently, this is our winner.  Here's the foreman:

 "When you're in front of a grand jury you have to answer. ... He gave a story rather than a yes-or-no answer,''

So - is that a felony?  

Beyond a reasonable doubt - which means you are as certain as you can reasonably be, is Bonds intentionally obstructing justice with his answer to that question?  And does that answer, to that question, have the natural tendency to influence, or was capable of influencing,
the decision of the grand jury.  Is that answer the difference between a grand jury indicting BALCO and not?  And to what extent is Bonds attempting to do that - to what extent is that answer actually obstructing justice?  Enough to make it a felony?  Would you expect it to be a felony if you did it?

You walk into grand jury testimony by yourself, without a lawyer because that's how it works, and you answer that question in that way.  Remember, you're not under indictment, you're testifying in front of a grand jury going after BALCO. Would you expect the result would be you are convicted of a felony almost 8 years later?  That answer - right there - that's the crime that Bonds committed.  Assuming it's not overturned, and assuming the government doesn't ever get a conviction on the other charges, when we think about Bonds historically and some sportswriter opposes his induction to the Hall of Fame because of his conviction - remember, his entire crime is contained in that passage you just read.  That's Barry Bonds's felony.  

7. Statement D:

Q: Did Greg ever give you testosterone in injectable form for you to take?

A: No.

Q: Would you have taken it if he gave it to you?

A: He wouldn’t jeopardize our friendship that way.

Now, obviously it's not this question, as Bonds answered directly (and this ends the jury instruction for count 5, there are no more relevant portions of his grand jury testimony to this count) and the specific question is clearly another way to get to the material in statement C.  The government asked Bonds if Anderson gave him anything that required a syringe - and, presumably dissatisfied with the response, then asked if Anderson gave him testosterone that required a syringe.  Bonds says no.

If you are the government, and you believe that statement C will influence the decision of the grand jury, and you clearly have the ability to ask questions that will cause Bonds to clarify that point, you would - right?  If after statement D, you still feel like that third statement is out there, deliberately trying to obstruct your ability to get a grand jury to justly decide whether to indict BALCO, then aren't you asking "did Greg ever give you X in injectable form for you to take?" in as many different ways, with as many different possibilities as are needed in order to remove the obstruction from the justice you're pursuing?  You just asked the question with the word testosterone - if you have more examples, you would use them, right?  

If it's a material fact - and you can clearly ask more questions - and you can get Bonds to answer very directly and specifically as demonstrated in statement D - what is the reason why you don't do so?

Either it's not a material fact, not important enough to continue to follow up on (meaning it isn't obstruction of justice) - or you are satisfied  that the answer to the testosterone question has clarified the previous answer (meaning it isn't obstruction of justice)- or you know that obstruction of justice might be a card you can play later; might give you an extra piece of leverage later, if your real target isn't the drug pusher, Victor Conte, who will only get 4 months in jail, but instead Bonds.  And maybe you don't want further clarification.  You want an answer that seems evasive on the record.  Because you're setting a trap.  You're not looking for justice - you're setting a trap.  

Could be any of those three possibilities.  But are we seriously going to say that what Barry Bonds did in answering that question should be regarded as a felony?

2. 9 Things The Rich Don't Want You to Know About Taxes
The one piece I want you to read this week is here, by David Cay Johnston.

When it comes to state and local taxes, the poor bear a heavier burden than the rich in every state except Vermont, the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy calculated from official data. In Alabama, for example, the burden on the poor is more than twice that of the top 1 percent. The one-fifth of Alabama families making less than $13,000 pay almost 11 percent of their income in state and local taxes, compared with less than 4 percent for those who make $229,000 or more. 

Despite skyrocketing incomes, the federal tax burden on the richest 400 has been slashed, thanks to a variety of loopholes, allowable deductions and other tools. The actual share of their income paid in taxes, according to the IRS, is 16.6 percent. Adding payroll taxes barely nudges that number.

Compare that to the vast majority of Americans, whose share of their income going to federal taxes increased from 13.1 percent in 1961 to 22.5 percent in 2007. 

Corporate profits in 2008, the latest year for which data is available, were $1,830 billion, up almost 12 percent from $1,638.7 in 2000. Yet even though corporate tax rates have not been cut, corporate income-tax revenues fell to $230 billion from $249 billion—an 8 percent decline, thanks to a number of loopholes. The official 2010 profit numbers are not added up and released by the government, but the amount paid in corporate taxes is: In 2010 they fell further, to $191 billion -- a decline of more than 23 percent compared with 2000. 

3. Every NBA Dunk Contest Dunker - On A Poster
You can buy it here.

4.  Roulette
Go ahead, trust me.

5. $83.30

 This is our Publix receipt from Friday;  thanks to the planning of my Lady Type Friend, we saved 80 bucks, cutting our bill by a third, for a large grocery shopping trip.

I've otherwise been productive this week, that's my top 10 best baseball players at each position; this is my NBA playoff picks.

I was also able to wrangle this cat:

from his escape outside Tuesday afternoon.  Ed is not easily wrangled.

6. Your Newest Reality Show Stars
The San Francisco Giants have won 4 straight to pull into second in the NL West.

And their reality show debuted on Showtime.  It's good and you can see episode one here.

7. You Don't Want to be a Vegetarian if You Live in Crete
They won't let you adopt a child.

8. Thank You, President-Elect Trump
Last year, CEO pay went up 27%; worker pay 2%.

9. Good God, We're Running Out of Water!
There are some subjects on which I will click every time; Ginnifer Goodwin, onion ringsthe german suplex.

To that list add, "anything that says we're running out of water, 'cause that scares me thirsty every time."

Probably, you should read The Big Thirst:

The world has 6.9 billion people. At least 1.1 billion of us don’t have access to clean, safe drinking water -- that’s one out of six people in the world. Another 1.8 billion people don’t have access to water in their homes or yard, but do have access within a kilometer. So at least 40 percent of the world either doesn’t have good access to water, or has to walk to get it.
In the next fifteen years, by 2025, the world will add 1.2 billion people. By 2050, we will add 2.4 billion people. So between now and forty years from now, more new people will join the total population than were alive worldwide in 1900. They will be thirsty.

10. 4-17-10
My dad died a year ago today.  He missed the World Series.  
That's all for this time.  I'll be back the next time...if there is a next time...

Your pal,


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