Tag Archives: Run DMC

My Cleveland Sports Weekend v3

Dear Diary,

“I am alone. I am utterly alone. My whole Sports Life is a dark room.”

Yes, I am channeling my inner Lydia Deetz today, but can you blame me?

First of all, the weekend started off Friday night with the NR Rangers falling to Bay 34-19. ZERO second half points!? The amazing junior “Run DMC” (you remember – DeMario McCall? Future Buckeye if I’m lucky?) did what he could, rushing for 138 yards and two touch downs but it wasn’t enough. They just got out-played and it was brutal to watch.

You’d think another tOSU Buckeye romp on Saturday would help me feel better but, no. Crushing Rutgers 56-17 only makes me mad all over again that we lost that dang Va-Tech game.
Too many one-loss teams to even thing about playoffs and yet, that’s what I’m doing. Wallowing in the sadness that comes from losing a game early in the season.

So Sunday comes along and I thought, “Wow, Browns are at Jax. The Jags have not played well this season; this should be an easy game.” Uh, not so fast there chickadee… we got our butts handed to us by a team that was desperately trying to get their first win of the season and, while they look bad on paper, still have enough talent to fight for yards.

I’m already hearing the Manzealots screaming for Johnny and, while I agree Hoyer wasn’t at his best, those people are CRAZY! Last week vs Steelers he had 217 passing yards and we scored 31 points.  Yesterday vs Jaguars he had 215 passing yards and we scored 6 points.  You know what the difference was? Turnovers and Rushing Yards!  A mere 62 yards on the ground? And we’re a Running Team? OY!

picture from www.nflrush.com
picture from www.nflrush.com

And if that isn’t bad enough, if simply getting smashed by an 0-6 team isn’t humiliating enough, we gave up 127 yards to Denard Robinson! Yes, the same Michi-scum my Buckeyes faced just last year, QB turned RB, That Guy! While I love seeing former Buckeye Whitner taking down Denard, it makes me crazy I have to see #16 at all anymore! Oy AGAIN!

The biggest hurdle I see, diary, is the Center position. I know I was all Patty Positive last week when Alex Mack got hurt and Greco came in, but it seemed, well, seamless. We moved the ball, did what we wanted, and kicked Steeler butt. This week however, was a very different story. CLEARLY, the defensive line for the Jaguars has been underappreciated.  And CLEARLY we undervalued what a great Center means to a football team. We haven’t had to worry about that position in so long that now everyone has to learn what I tried to explain during the offseason when Mack got his fat contract: The offense is Centered around the Center! Not only is he responsible for getting the QB the ball correctly and without the QB worrying about it, but he’s basically unblocked by the defense so he steps back and looks to the A or B gap to see who needs help. This is NOT something Greco can pick up in just one week.  I’m hopeful that Alex will be back in Berea to visit this week and will take Greco under his wing for some veteran coaching, tricks of the trade, something!

Heavy Sigh. And so my week without a Victory Monday commences.  I’m sure, diary, that by Friday, I’ll be cheerful again, rooting for my teams.  But for now, I shall simply wallow in the unhappiness that comes from my Sports Life being a Dark Room.  I know I’m being totally melodramatic here but I did warn you that I was channeling Lydia. And since Halloween is so near, it seems fitting, don’t ya think?


Respectfully (and Depressingly) Submitted,

Cleveland Kate

Arkansas Dynamic Duo of the BCS Era

The best one two punch in Razorback football history was Darren McFadden and Felix Jones.  Both were very skilled and versatile on the grid iron.  And the 2006 season was the first time in Razorback history that two different running backs rushed for over 1,000 yards in the same year;  McFadden with 1,647 yards and Jones with 1,168 yards.
McFadden attended Oak Grove High School in North Little Rock, AR.  And in 2005 he was a freshman for the Hogs.  His breakout game was at Georgia when McFadden run through the Bulldogs defense for 190 yards and 2 touchdowns.  Yes the Hogs lost that game 24-20, but that performance put McFadden on the map in the SEC.  Also as a freshman McFadden was a first team All-SEC selection at running back.
2006 was an excellent season for McFadden, Jones and for me as well.  My good friend Max scored some sideline passes for the Ole Miss game in Fayetteville that year.  Jones took the opening kickoff back for a touchdown.  And Razorback Stadium exploded, it felt like the ground was shaking as Jones ran for the TD.  My friend Max was yelling “Felix took it to the house!”   That same game the Razorbacks introduced the “Wildcat” formation, with McFadden taking the snap directly from center.  Max noticed this before I did saying “What’s going on? D-Mac is at QB!”  The Hogs Wildcat formation went on to cause many headaches for defensive coordinators around the SEC.  Go ask former Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer about trying to defend the Wildcat.  In 2006 when Hogs played Vols, Fulmer was asked by ESPN at halftime about what to do with McFadden.  He said “We’re gonna have to tackle his butt.”  The Hogs thrashed Tennessee 31-14 (it wasn’t that close) with the ESPN Game Day crew in attendance.  McFadden ran for 181 yards and 2 TD’s and threw for 1 TD that night.  With McFadden and Jones leading the way, Arkansas won the SEC West in 2006.
Felix Jones went to Booker T Washington High School in Tulsa, OK.  Jones kind of flew under the radar playing in high school.  Oklahoma didn’t recruit him, Texas didn’t either.  I’m not sure what the Sooners and Longhorns were thinking back then because they sure missed out on a great running back/ kick returner.  It was his sophomore year at Arkansas (2006) when Jones really showcased his ability and versatility.  He was a fantastic kick returner with 4.40 speed. He ran 4 kickoffs back for TD’s during his 3 years as a Hog.  And in 2006 Jones was an All-SEC selection.   In the Wildcat formation Jones was used as a running back, receiver, blocker, or just a decoy.  And even though Jones was McFadden’s back up, he still had a great career at Arkansas.  And put up some hefty numbers. It says a lot about Jones’s character in the he was ok with McFadden being the starter.  He was ok with McFadden being “The Guy”.   In 2007 Jones was the SEC Special Teams Player of the Year.  Jones was also named to the Consensus All-American Team 2007.  Yet the stat that stands out the most to me with Jones is he averaged 7.8 yards per carry for his career at Arkansas.  That’s playing in the SEC against great defenses and still getting almost 8 yards every time Jones touched the ball.
While I was watching Razorback highlights from 2006-2007 on YouTube, it reminded me just how good McFadden and Jones were. And how they both absolutely wrecked SEC defenses.  And it was every team in the SEC they ran through.  Former LSU All-American safety LaRon Landry said this about McFadden “If you think he’s just fast, you’re wrong.  He can deliver a hit like a linebacker.”  McFadden tied the SEC single game rushing record with 321 yards rushing against South Carolina in 2007.  D-Mac was also only the 2nd player in college football history (with Ricky Williams) to win the Doak Walker Award twice.
Both McFadden and Jones were first round draft picks in the 2008 NFL draft.  McFadden was the 4th overall pick by the Oakland Raiders.  Jones was drafted 22nd in the first round by the Dallas Cowboys.  It’s debatable who has had the better career in the NFL.  What can’t be denied is how D-Mac and Jones were two of the best college backs in the BCS Era.