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Friday, June 30, 2006

Best Tackle by a Spartan Since '87

The scene: Camp Randall Stadium. Bucky Badger had swiped the Spartan flag when one of Sparty's finest goes into action and takes down Bucky with a tackle that would have had Chris Spielman drooling with praise (and make sure to listen to the crowd's reaction - it sums up the scene perfectly).

Unfortunately as you saw, it was by one of their cheerleaders, which pretty much sums up their football program over the past 20 years.

Too Funny Not to Post

Folks, we couldn't pass this one up. No, siree. Has nothing to do with college football but, well, you'll see...

Today we bring you the sad, sad, so-damn-sad-it-hurts (trust us) story of Fateh Mohammed, a prisoner in Pakistan who's serving a four-year sentence for making liquor.

Now, to prepare you, think of the worst day you've had in the last month. Got one in mind? Was it really bad? I mean really awful? Ha! That ain't shit. Not even close. Your "really bad day" doesn't even hold a candle to Fateh's story. You see, that's because Fateh woke up last week with a light bulb in his anus. Yes, you read that correctly - a LIGHT BULB IN HIS ANUS!

But that's not the "best" part of the story -- Fateh claims he has no idea how the light bulb got into his anus and that he must have been drugged. Riiiiiight.

Reminds us of that Fusilli Jerry episode of Seinfeld when Kramer says...

"See, no one wants to admit to them that they stuck something up there. Never! It's always an accident. Every proctologist story ends in the same way: 'It was a million to one shot, Doc. Million to one.'"

How do you say "Million to one shot" in Arabic?

Four Oregon Players to Leave Citing Lack of Playing Time, We Think It's the Uniforms

Four University of Oregon football players are leaving the school in order to get more playing time.

At least that's what they're saying publicly.

We think the real reason they're bolting Eugene is obvious -- those wacky new uniforms the Ducks just unveiled.

Admit it - you'd transfer, too.

Problems with Big House Renovations Already Obvious

MZone reader Evan sent us the pic and email below...

Just came across this preliminary sketch of the Big House Renovations, which you have probably seen before, except the stats on the scoreboard caught my eye.

We appear to be playing Western Mich., and the score is tied 44-44 in the first quarter. And amazingly, both teams have gained nor given up any yards. Since special teams yards probably don't count for the offense or against the defense, I can only imagine Stevie Breaston and Western's return man can both run 2.3 40's and have 80" verticals to allow them to trade off returning 7 consecutive kickoffs for TDs. (7 TDs given that Garrett Rivas and Western's place kicker have missed 5 out of 7 extra points, which is hardly a surprise for either kicker.)

Also, it is now 4th & 44 for Michigan, which means that Western eventually caught on and pooched the ball to an up-man on the kickoff, then stopped Max Martin (pictured on the video board) 3 times for no gain. Why we would be playing Max Martin in such a "close" game is beyond me, but maybe Lloyd hoped Martin and Breaston were training together.

Finally, the play clock shows 44 seconds, which would have to be a rule change from the current 30.

If this scoreboard is indeed an indication of the kind of effect the new luxury boxes will have on games at the Big House, I am firmly against them. We don't need luxury boxes to embarass ourselves against Western, instead we could just play the early September game on the road in Kalamazoo.

Bell Ringing: Is That What They're Calling It These Days?

The winner of the first-ever MZone Carl Spackler award goes to the Texas Tech student in the video below. He's the, uh, "lucky" freshman chosen to be the Red Raider "bell ringer."

And folks, if you haven't seen this clip, trust us, he can really ring his the "bell."

Thanks to a reader Sean for the tip.

In the UK they call it "Charming The Snake"

Seeing that video of the Texas Tech bell ringer reminded me of this clip from the British game show Catch Phrase.

Note how a number of the host's comments could be taken out of context:
  • "5 seconds, here we go"
  • "290 pounds"
  • "Here comes the bonus"

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Net Neutrality Update

A couple weeks ago, we put up a post about "net neutrality" and the potential consequences if Congress strikes down the status quo which now requires the big telecoms to treat all information equally on the Internet (meaning whether you go to Deadspin or ESPN to get your sports fix, AT&T shouldn't be able to charge a fee so that deep-pocketed ESPN loads faster, etc.).

We'll say it again and again but, while not exciting or sexy, this issue is very important if you want to get unfiltered access to your favorite sites and not be faced someday with an Internet that is closer to cable TV, controlled by big media companies that can pick and choose "winners" online.

Well, our friends over at Bruin Nation have put up another excellent post on the subject. The telecom bill has moved over to the Senate where it's coming down to crunch time. So check out Nestor's post over there and please contact your Senator about this very important subject.

And as if you needed more reason why you shouldn't want companies like Comcast controlling access to the Internet, some of you might have read about the Comcast employee who was fired for falling asleep on a customer's couch during a house call while - not making this up - being put on hold for an hour by Comcast!

The story came to light because the customer posted a video of the sleeping tech on YouTube. Let's make sure it stays that way and everyday folks continue to enjoy the same access to the Internet as the "big guys."

Ok, we know we already have two YouTube posts up today, but you can't tell the story above without...

Buckeye Roommates

Ohio State: You come for the world-class education and culture of Columbus, but you stay for the life-long friendships you make in the dorm...

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

MZone Caption Contest

Yes, folks, it's time once again for another MZone Caption Contest. Here's what we came up with for the pic above...

Karl was about to find out the true meaning of "Roll Tide."

Leave us your best in the comments section.

Surefire Way for U-M to Make Big Dance

Yes, it really would be "madness" if they did this -- according to Jim Haney, executive director of the National Association of Basketball Coaches, college basketball coaches would like to double the NCAA men's tournament to 128 teams. Some of the motivation apparently stems for George Mason's run to the Final Four this year as well as Haney's assertion that a post-season bid would help more coaches keep their jobs.

Gee, why stop at 128? How 'bout just expanding it to 256 teams and include Divisions II and III as well! Yeah, that would be better. Or maybe if a coach asks really nice, let him in, too.

Let me go out on a limb here and say this is the stupidest fucking idea I've heard in a long time. Instead of a selection committee, they might as well just use Evite.

Buckstache in Urban Dictionary

One of our readers tipped us off to the fact that The Buckstache has found it's way into the Urban Dictionary. Just a note of thanks to all the legally challenged Tosu fans, players and players-to-be for making this great honor possible.

"Gooooooo Raaaaaaaaiders!"

Folks, there is nothing quite like a drunk college football fan after his team wins a big game. And by nothing quite like it, we mean obnoxious...and funny as hell in the case of the clip below.

Texas Tech had just defeated Oklahoma on the last play of the game in Lubbock. In the tunnel after the game, Fox Sports Net was attempting to interview a Sooner player - "attempt" being the key word. Turns out, an apparently drunk (we hope) fan of the Red Raiders had other ideas...

(HT: SixDegreesOfBowden)

Note: For some reason, YouTube has flagged this video as potentially inappropriate. However, it's totally safe for work.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Roethlisberger to Also Shun Helmet in NFL

After the whole no-helmet motorcycle thing worked out so well for him, Steeler QB Ben Roethlisberger has decided to stop wearing head protection on the football field as well.

Thanks to reader Gino for the pic.

Saddam Hussein: Tough Guy

Nothing to do with college football, but couldn't pass this one up...

So after the killing of one of his lawyers last week, former Iraqi dictator and mass murderer Saddam Hussein went on a hunger strike in protest. Being the brave man of conviction that he is, it lasted for - wait for it - one meal.

Yes, one meal.

Gee, what a tough guy. Benny was on a longer hunger strike yesterday when he skipped breakfast because he had to be in the office early for a staff meeting.

Proof that Beavis & Butthead are alive and well and living in Columbus

How did the conversation go that led to this wild and crazy fun-filled day?...

"I'm bored."
"Summer sucks."
"Least we don't have to study and read books and shit."
"I wish we could go throw stuff and spit at Michigan fans."
"Gotta wait til November, dude."
"Don't you mean - FUCK MICHIGAN!"


"Dude, I got it! Let's go set a Michigan hat on fire!"
"Dude, you so fucking rock!"


"Wait! And let's video tape it!"


Monday, June 26, 2006

World Cup Soccer Excitement Causes Amnesia

So excited to see the World Cup, a 25 year old Boston man checked into his hotel in Germany before racing over to see the big Poland-Costa Rica clash. Afterwards he spent the next six hours wandering around Hanover fruitlessy searching for his hotel because he couldn't remember its name, address or anything else about it.

Finally, at 3 a.m., he went to the police and asked for help. All he could remember was paying 10 euros for a taxi ride to the city center and that he went past a park and a Mercedes dealer (which is probably a lot like saying you passed a Ford dealership in the U.S.).

The police took the genius to the area that matched his vague description of the city of 500,000 and spent an hour driving his ass up and down streets until he recognized his hotel just before dawn.

Why I Love Beach Volleyball

In the dead of summer whilst we all anxiously await the start of the college football season, just a little something to pass away the time. Shown here is a picture of the USA's world #1 Misty May-Treanor giving a hand signal during a match at the FIVB beach volleyball grand slam in Gstaad this month.

After careful study, I'm pretty sure the signal means, "Yost, I want you." Could be wrong. I'm just guessing. But look at the letters tattooed on her back: "B-R-C." I mean, if that doesn't scream code for "Yost," well, then I don't know what does.

Finally, I hope MZone readers appreciate above how I shamelessly attempted to tie this post into college football even though it was a stretch. However, I doubt we'll get many complaints.

Career Guidance

In last week's issue, The Sporting News had an article about former Michigan tight end Benny Joppru. Joppru, who had a solid senior season in Ann Arbor was a second round pick for the Houston Texans in the 2003 draft. Since then he's missed three full seasons - two due to a sports hernia, one because of a torn ACL.

It made me think how lucky I am not to play football. No matter how much I work on these expense reports on my desk, I'm not going to tear an ACL doing it. And there's no way I'm going to get a sports hernia, though I once thought I pulled a hammy running for the bus. Plus, it's highly unlikely the guy a couple of cubicles over is going to hit me with the force of a hepped up Ray Lewis.

Of course Joppru is entering the final year of a $3.005 million contract. So maybe football's not such a bad career choice.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Buckstache Curse "Unwittingly" Strikes Tosu Football Staff

Shouldn't the Buckstache have been their first clue?

Jim "Hear No Evil" Tressel and Buckeye athletics director Gene "See No Evil" Smith said they were caught unaware when it was revealed that Ohio State's just-hired director of football performance, Eric Lichter, was convicted of a misdemeanor drug possession back in 1998.

Initially charged with distributing Ritalin and Rohypnol, the date rape drug, that felony charge was dropped and Lichter pleaded guilty to possession.

So what happened?

According to Lichter's account in the Columbus Dispatch, "Unbeknownst to me, (the manager at the gym I worked at in college) was involved in drug trafficking. One night he came up to me and said, 'I've got a guy coming, can you hand him this envelope?' and I said, 'Sure, no problem.' It turned out to be a locker key (where the drugs had been stashed)."

Makes perfect sense to the Dispatch. The very title of their story is, "Coach unwittingly caught in drug sting."

Hmmm. Ok. But let me pose a question to you, our loyal readers...

Suppose you go to work tomorrow and your boss says "Hey, INSERT YOUR NAME HERE! Stop reading that goddamn Michigan blog and go give this package to Stevens next door." So, without asking what it is or taking a peek, you go next door and are immediately gang tackled by a team of FBI agents who arrest you for dealing drugs to "Stevens."

Now, maybe I'm being too hard on Mr. Lichter, but if that were me, and I didn't know jack shit about what was in that package I was delivering, I wouldn't plead guilty to ANYTHING. Certainly not a drug possession charge, for cryin' out loud. I mean, if the Domino's delivery kid didn't know the night manager was stuffing an ounce of hash under the pies, should he plead guilty?

Hey, here's an idea: maybe Tressel should bring those drug and bomb sniffing dogs they're so fond of unleashing on the U-M team bus to job interviews at the 'Shoe.

Props to "Concerned Ohioan" and Surrounded in Columbus for the tip.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Yankee Going Home - Again

It's all over for the USA soccer team in the WorldCup. All the hype, all the blogging, all the ogling of hot World Cup fans has come to an end. For the USA. Of course, 16 teams have moved on, and true soccer aficionados will continue to watch with interest.

I hope the soccer fanatics in this country are as upset as I am about the Americans' performance. An 0-2-1 record, only two goals, a listless loss to the Czech Republic, and a loss to unheralded Ghana. Of course, as John Stewart said in last night's Daily Show, "There's no shame is losing to one of southwest Africa's least malnourished nations."

This World Cup was an unmitigated disaster for the U.S. team, and it's a disgrace. I'm not one of these ugly Americans who think that everything in the world is ours due to our birthright. But I do believe we have the best athletes in the world here. We have tremendous resources, love sports, and a huge population of people whose heritage is from the countries where soccer is the number one passion.

I remember in the early '80s how soccer was going to be the biggest sport in this country. That never happened, but just about every kid plays it, and that's been the case for 20 years. Where are the 25 and 30 year olds who were part of soccer's original boom here? I know it's the top sport in most European and South American countries, and sure, if Dwyane Wade, Vince Young, and Derek Jeter chose soccer, we'd probably be taking home the World Cup. But I find it hard to believe we can't find 20 players among the almost 300 million people in this country to be competitive on the world stage. The U.S. women have been able to do it.

I'm not saying the U.S. should win every World Cup, or be in the finals every year. But there's no reason we shouldn't be a player in most international tournaments. Failing to make the round of 16 should be equivalent of Michigan having a losing season - it should happen maybe once in a lifetime. Unfortunately the U.S. soccer team isn't the Michigan of international soccer. We're more like Arizona State. Sure, we qualified for the World Cup, and the apologists will say that's an accomplishment. Kind of like ASU making the Insight Bowl. I think the U.S. should be able to do better than the Insight Bowl.

The Things That Inspire Nike

Yesterday, we put up a post, uh, commenting on Oregon's 48 new uniforms.

In it, we were particularly puzzled by the criss-cross tread-looking-things on the sleeves and knees. Where did the inspiration come from? Then, on the way home from work today, Benny literally stumbled across the answer. So simple, so genius. And it just screams college football uniform...

Ultimate College Football Preview

Forget Athlon. Never mind Phil Steele. Throw Lindy's out the window. We here at the MZone have uncovered the definitive 2006 college football preview. If only Herbstreit would end the Gameday broadcasts the same way when Corso says something stupid.

Watching this actually makes us miss Trev Alberts and Beano Cook.

On second thought, we prefer these two knuckleheads.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Oregon: The Rocket Man of College Football

TO: Oregon Fans
RE: Uniform Design 475,892

Dear Duck Fans,

First off, you know we like you guys here at the MZone. Heck, a couple months ago, we named UO fans some of the classiest in the country. And we realize Nike founder Phil Knight is an alum who donates millions to the school, including money for locker rooms which we hear are the envy of NFL teams.

But for the love of God, somebody has to reign in these designs the Nike folks are forcing on you and your team. You guys are a major college football team, not contestants on Project Runway.

I mean, a while back there was that Nike-designed mascot that looked like a rejected villian out of the really shitty Batman movie starring George Clooney.

Now we get sent pix of your latest uniforms...

Sweet mother of Pearl! Where do we start?

First of all, what's with the four different styles? Just so you know, most teams have two - home unis and away unis. Period. Not a different design for each month of the college football season. Christ. You guys have more wardrobe changes than a Madonna concert.

And let's talk helmets. Rule of thumb: use one. Not three. Then again, with four different uniforms, maybe this is restraint.

Finally, can somebody explain the criss-crossed silver things on the sleeves and knees? Seriously. It looks like it was inspired by the metal floors you find on a warehouse loading dock. Either that or tire treads on an F-150. But then that seems to imply somebody ran over your ass which isn't the image a football team usually seeks to portray.

Listen, like we said above, we're big Oregon fans here. My trip to Eugene was fantastic (except for the outcome of the game part). However, according to your school's press release about the new uniforms, this is the 4th major "evolution" of the football duds since Nike starting designing them in 1996. Four big ones in a decade.

Senior tight end Dante Rosario puts it this way, "Those schools, Southern California, Michigan, Notre Dame, Penn State, those teams are known for the tradition they have of not ever changing, however many years they've been playing. Maybe we're known for innovation, trying new things, pushing the boundaries of what people are used to. We're different."

Ok, ok. We get it. Crazy outfits are sort of becoming what Oregon is known for. But so is Elton John. And I'm not sure that's a good thing for a college football team.

Besides, doesn't anybody realize why Nike changes them so often? So the suckers who bought the 2003 model now have to go out and buy the new crap. It's not about "improving" them. It's about making a buck (or $50 mil in order to put new plasma screens in the locker room).

So please, before Phil has the Ducks taking the field in bright yellow boas and Nike-swooshed tutus, somebody needs to put a stop to this. Stat.

Just trying to help.


Your friends at the MZone

Thanks to reader Colin for the tip.

"Put the cue ball down and step away from the pool table!"

Ugandan police have banned folks from playing pool during the daytime because they say it encourages crime. According to a Ugandan police chief, youths play while drinking and smoking dope, using pool games "as a meeting place to make plans of robbing people of their property at night."

On the plus side, pool tables also promote hot girl-girl action

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

The Pros and Cons of a Late Start in Columbus

In case you haven't heard, the Michigan-Tosu game will be starting at 3:30 Eastern Standard Time this November instead of the usual noon kick-off. Due to the lateness of the day, and the lateness of the year, it makes the game a virtual night game. No doubt the lights will be on right from the start.

But the late start, which is unusual for this rivalry, has some positives and negatives that we outline for you here:

Pro: U-M fans driving to the game don't have to get up at 5 a.m. to head to Columbus
Con:The darkness on the drive home will make it harder to spot Ohio state troopers waiting in the median to bust Michigan fans doing 2 mph over the speed limit

Pro: Wolverine fans in vehicles with Michigan license plates have more time to get their windshield/car windows fixed before the game.
Con: Won't have radio to help keep you up on your late drive home because those Buckstache fuckers will probably snap off your antennae, too.

Pro: Due to a longer Hineygate, fans could be passed out/hungover by the second half, reducing the home field advantage.
Con: Since Hineygate will go for an extra three or four hours, fans will be much more drunk and abusive, although their "Fuck Michigans" could be slurred.

Pro: Later start means it'll be warmer at tailgates before game
Con: Later ending means it'll be colder after game so thrown beer bottles will sting that much more leaving stadium

Pro: The bonfires that will start around 7 p.m. (win or lose) will create a wondrous glow over Columbus and provide an earth-friendly source of light.
Con: Smoke in the atmosphere could delay my flight out of that shithole.

Did we miss any? Please add them in the comments section.

TSN's Tom Dienhart Goes Out on Journalistic Limb

The Sporting News' Tom Dienhart went out on a journalistic limb with a story criticizing Lloyd Carr coached Michigan teams as being perennial under-achievers. According to Dienhart, no Big 10 team has more talent yet no Big 10 team is more disappointing year in and year out.

Wow. Groundbreaking stuff. Criticizing Carr after a 7-5 season. How does he have the balls to even type such words? I mean, one doesn't see 50 of those stories littering every U-M fan board in cyberspace. Hell, Dienhart could have taken the day off and simply cut-and-pasted from Rivals, Scout or any Fuck-You-Lloyd-Because-You-Don't-Win-Every-Game .org, .net or .com site.

Doubt me? Go try and find any pro-Lloyd threads out there. You have a better chance finding a Republican at a Hollywood fundraiser or some joker still running one of those FireJoePa sites which have suddenly gone silent on the heels of the Nittany Lions 11-1 mark in 2005.

Point is, Michigan fans need to take a deep breath. The sky is not falling. Really.

Before last season, Michigan went to back-to-back Rose Bowls. Yes, the Wolverines lost but keep those defeats in perspective. One of those losses was to a USC team in the midst of something like the third longest winning streak in NCAA history while the other Rose Bowl loss was on the last play of the game to Texas team led by a QB who absolutely shredded that same USC team even worse this past January.

Yes, 2005 was unacceptable. Totally agree. But it was an aberration. Even Dienhart mentions in his story that he "will give Carr and Michigan credit: They never have fallen on their keister like every other major program. USC, Ohio State, Tennessee, Texas, Alabama, Penn State, Oklahoma, Georgia, Miami, Nebraska, LSU, Notre Dame … all of those college football fat boys have had losing records at some point over the past 15-20 years."

Furthermore, Lloyd has totally revamped his staff in an effort to correct the mistakes of last season. So the maize and blue faithful need to relax. It's not as bad as the cyber parrots would have you believe, even those getting paid to write that the sky is falling.

(HT: HeismanPundit)

Curse of the Buckstache Continues

Honestly, folks, we tried. We really tried not to do a Buckstache post today. But when half our readership alerts us to the fact Santonio Holmes, former Buckeye and current Buckstacher, is arrested for the second time in a month, what's a Michigan blog to do?

To refresh, last month Holmes was arrested for disorderly conduct following his confrontation with a Miami Beach police officer. Well, that was so May.

Just after midnight on Monday, Holmes was arrested and charged with assaulting a woman. And not just any woman, mind you. But the mother of his 18 week old daughter who put it this way in her 911 call to police...

In the police report, Holmes allegedly choked her, knocked her to the ground and slammed her into a door at the apartment shown below...

Bill Cowher, coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers who drafted Holmes in the first round, had criticized the wideout after his first arrest. No word on his reaction to this latest incident.

Before the NFL draft, Holmes had said he was hopeful that he would go high in the draft so he could support his three children. Yes, you read that right - three. Hopefully the 22 year old Holmes will use some of his frist round draft money to purchase condoms.

Thanks again to all our readers who sent us the tip on this story.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Worse Than A NASCAR T-Shirt

Saw over on THE HOUSE ROCK BUILT that Notre Dame has unveiled its gameday t-shirts for the 2006 season and we totally agree with HRB that the one for the M/ND clash is, uh...not good. Judge for yourself (and no, we didn't Photoshop this):

Battle of the Super Models? Are you kidding me?

This is worse than those gaudy Rose Bowl t-shirts by grandmother used to buy me for Christmas from Sears when I was a little kid. I think I'd rather get a NASCAR tee as they're more subtle.

Go Blue, Go Stanley

Congratulations to former Wolverine hockey player Aaron Ward and the Carolina Hurricanes for winning the Stanley Cup. Ward, who played in Ann Arbor from 1990 to 1993, scored the first goal for Carolina in their Game 7 win over Edmonton last night. Ward played in two Frozen Fours with Michigan, and was on Stanley Cup winning teams with Detroit in '97 and '98.

We're # 7....or # 10...or...

Orson and the gang posted their EDSBS Pundit-by-Numbers Preseason Top 25 Assembly Kit® yesterday and I think somebody breached a confidentiallity agreement and spilled the beans to them, it's that close to the way the "pros" do it.

My only quibble is they don't have the "Phil Fulmer Variable" which states that if you're still pissed that your never-won-a-title QB lost out on the Heisman, make sure to drop the undefeated team of the actual trophy winner down a couple spots out of spite.

Monday, June 19, 2006

The Buckstache Through History

This is a first in an occasional series (ie when readers send us tips) showing The Buckstache throughout history.

By now, if you're a regular reader of the MZone, you know about The Buckstache, our new name for the mustache due to its popularity among Tosu folks, especially those with legal woes. But while the popular Columbus style has been co-opted by folks who've run afoul of the law, it hasn't always been that way. This is the story of such a man.

One of the earliest proponents of The Buckstache was a rap sheet-less football player so good, he got his picture on a Wheaties box - in high school! However, with his choice of any college in the country this mustache-loving linebacker chose Tosu and coach Earl Bruce where he was a three time All-Big Ten selection as well as a two-time All-American. The man behind the 'stache was Buckeye great Chris Spielman.

Now, while we usually bash Buckeyes mercilessly here on the MZone, we have a hard time doing it with Chris Spielman. First of all, he was drafted by the hometown Lions and was a four-time Pro Bowler for the Honolulu Blue and Silver. But most importantly, Spielman seems to be a heck of a person. When his wife was stricken with cancer in 1999, Spielman took a year off to be with her and even shaved his head to match her hair loss due to chemotherapy. Afterwards, he and his wife used his celebrity to raise millions for breast cancer research.

If only more Buckeyes like Spielman had kept their Buckstaches instead of allowing the Tosu grooming statement to be hijacked by less desirable Tosu folks. Then again, what the hell would we write about in June if that were the case?

Thanks to DevilGrad for the tip.

I am not alone

While I may rant and rave about why I don't like soccer, Kyle King over at Dawg Sports gives the reasoned, nuanced version of why he just doesn't care about the sport.

And Kyle, you think pissing off Gators or Vols is bad, wait til some of the soccer folks show up on your site!

Soccer's not that bad. Really.

Not all of us at the MZone hate soccer. Though hardly a major fan, I've followed the results, watched a couple of games, and was interested in seeing the USA-Italy game on Saturday. I even got into Ghana's huge upset of the Czech Repulbic. I couldn't help but notice a number of similarities to watching a college football game on ABC:

  • During the pre-game they took several shots of the fans outside the stadium and it was very reminiscent of the crowd shots during Gameday, with everyone wearing their team's colors, holding up signs to get on TV, singing their team's songs and, of course, partying.
  • Though I know not everyone at the World Cup paints their face and wears a wig, it's much easier to get on TV if you do those things. Just like for a college football game.
  • During the game, the crowd noise is overwhelming, not only because of the cheering, but also because of the singing and chanting. It might not be Let's Go Blue, or Hang on Sloopy, but it's still pretty catchy.
  • Unfortunately, just like many games in college football, the referees have too much influence.
  • Every 15 minutes or so ABC would put their "Sports Board" crawl at the bottom of the screen where they'd update scores in other World Cup games. That's all well and good, but when they'd start it up, they played the exact same tune that they use on college football Saturdays. So I hear those familiar notes, and I'm expecting to see an update on the Texas-Oklahoma game, and instead I get Portugal 2, Iran 0. Well, I guess I'm happy about that.

    Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Saturday, June 17, 2006

WTF Happened?!

To our readers:

For some reason, for the last 2+ hours or so, one was unable to access the main page of our site.

See what happens when you piss off soccer hooligans by making fun of their sport? Sheesh.

Sorry for the inconvenience (meaning you probably had to work instead of procrastinate on our site).

The MZone Gang

Friday, June 16, 2006

How could I have missed this excitement?

Gee, and I thought pissing off Buckeyes on the MZone created a cyber-firestorm. Ha! Who knew a post about soccer could spark so much vitriol on a college football site?

Yesterday, I put up a post expressing my dislike of soccer. World Cup or not, it bores me to death. One man's opinion (mine) on a blog (also mine).

Well, I was surpised to learn that because I don't like soccer, apparently I'm an ignorant redneck American who drives a pick-up truck and "can't drink for snot either."

Like I said, who knew?

I guess I just didn't realize the thrills I was missing. So I did some checking and boy was I wrong. I mean, looking at the results for Wednesday's clashes, I discovered that in Spain's 4-0 victory over Ukraine, Spain had 10 shots on goal, Ukraine had 2. In Germany's 1-0 thriller over Poland (after German hooligans clashed with police), Germany had 8 shots on goal, Poland had 3. Finally, the big Tunisia-Saudi Arabia 2-2 deadlock saw Tunisia having 2 shots on goal, Saudi Arabia with 5.

Wow. Almost five hours of soccer and six World Cup teams (the best of the best in the sport) produced a grand total of 30 shots on goal. Not 30 goals. Shots!

Pinch me, I can't stand the thrills.

The Jenn Sterger of Brazil

Ok, maybe I was too harsh on soccer...at least Brazilian fans:

Even crazier, the story of the woman above is remarkably similar to that of FSU football fan Jenn Sterger. As rumor has it, the young Brazilian lady was on her way to the big soccer match when somebody spilled beer all over her and she was like, "Que a foda!" So she just threw on her yellow bathing suit top and took one for the team. No way was this Brazilian bombshell going to miss the game. Hell no!

But wouldn't you know it, when she got to the match, her nipples started to itch. All because of that damn yellow top which she never wore - unless people spilled beer all over her on the way to soccer games. So, she had no choice - like the yellow top itself - but to whip those suckers out.

Now, as luck would have it, the soccer match was being televised by Brazil's largest network, TV Globo. And when a TV Globo cameraman happened to turn his lens her way and Brazilian sports commentator Bernardo Musburger famously said, "Duas razões vir a Brasil" ("Two reasons to come to Brazil) - an Internet sensation was born.

All because somebody spilled beer on this poor girl. All by accident. Just like Jenn Sterger.

Don't leave home without it

MZone reader Richard has been working on the ultimate road trip guide for college football fans, MapGameDay.com. The site uses Google Maps to show where the stadium is, prime tailgating locations, can't miss food and tavern locations, as well as local hotels.

Richard's currently working on spotlights of the ACC schools, with the SEC next, starting with Alabama on June 20.

In an effort to make the site even better, Richard's asking for help. Do you know the best place to tailgate? How about the best burger on campus? Or the bar with the best TV setup to watch the games? Drop him a line and let him know.

I know I'll be checking out the site come November before the MZone staff roadtrip to Columbus. Richard, one suggestion - do you think you could include a map to a parking lot where my car with Michigan plates won't be targeted? And maybe a tailgate area where I won't have beer bottles thrown my way because I'm wearing maize and blue? Just wondering.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

About this whole soccer thing...

I know, I know. I'm supposed to be "soccer mad" right now with the rest of the world, right? I mean, the World Cup happens just once ever four years so it must be sports nirvana, correct? It would be like college football only happening twice a decade, blah, blah, blah.

Sorry. Can't get on this bandwagon. Because, in my opinion - how can I put this? - soccer blows.

There, I said it. And I feel better getting it out. Because while it may not be "sportically correct," soccer bores me to tears. I'd rather watch grass grow - which I think it actually does during the course of a soccer match.

Sure, soccer fans rave about the "uninterrupted flow" of the game because play never stops for each of the two 45 minute halves. But to me, that's not flow, that's a flaw. Because when the hell am I supposed to take a whiz if the damn game never stops? Even worse, if the game never stops, that means no Bud Bowl. How can you call it the "biggest" sport in the world if there's not a Bud Bowl?

Oh, and what's the deal with that extra time just randomly added at the end of the game? Nobody knows how much, just the refs. Are you kidding me!? You think Penn State fans got bent out of shape about two extra seconds in Ann Arbor last year, JoePa would have a heart attack over this shit.

Listen, if you want to pretend this crap is exciting, go ahead. But any sport where the typical game is 1-0, 2-0 is a rout and 3-1 is an offensive explosion, I guess I don't get all the excitement. So pardon me if I'm not setting my alarm clock trying to catch the big Ecuador-Costa Rica showdown.

Go ahead, flame away with the "you don't get it" comments. But when Brazil, supposedly a team so good its back-ups could have qualified for the Cup, beats Croatia by - you guessed it - 1-0; and the Mighty English beat Paraguay - wait for it - 1-0; I'd rather save my TiVo space for old college football games on ESPN Classic.

The Classy Way to Tell Off Michigan

By now, most readers of this site (and college football fans in general), know of the Buckeye love for the phrase "Fuck Michigan." After "mama," "dada" and "trailer park," it's probably one of the first thing kids in Ohio learn to say.

But how to do other fans express their dislike of the Maize and Blue? When you're a little classier and don't want to be sporting the f-bomb? Well, if you're an Iowa Hawkeye fan you do it this way...

Even we have to love that one. It expresses dislike, but it in a nice PG/PG-13 sort of way. Although...

Is that a Buckstache he drew on himself?

HT: We can't for the life of us find the email of the person who sent us this picture but you know who you are. But let us know and we'll get your name up here if you want.

Not such a Happy Valley

Nathan Lehman was having a bad week. The 19 year old engineering student at Penn State had just been dumped by his girlfriend. He'd spent two sleepless nights camped outside Beaver Stadium in anticipation of the Penn State - Ohio State game. The religious Lehman couldn't even drown his sorrows in alcohol - he doesn't drink.

But then the Nittany Lions got their biggeest win in years. The stadium was alive and fans were going crazy. This was the type of thing that changes around a bad week, the kind of thing that makes college memorable. Maybe things were going to turn around for poor Nathan Lehman.

Did Lehman celebrate by hugging strangers in the stands? Did he join in a rousing chorus of Fight On State? Did he whip out his cell phone to take a picture of the moment? Nope, none of these. He stormed the field.

OK, there's nothing wrong with that. Most any college student worth their discounted season tickets has done that and it's pretty much required after any half-assed win in college hoops games. But Lehman didn't join a group in trying to take down the goal posts, or seek out the players to give them a pat on the shoulder pads. Instead, this kid with a totally clean record "tackled university police officer Cyprien Brien, punching him in the face and putting him in a headlock that left him with bruised neck ligaments," according to authorities.

Good thing he's religious and doesn't drink.

Lehman, who claimed he just snapped, pleaded guilty to an aggravated assault charge and was sentenced to four to 23 ½ months in prison, with eligibility for work release, and a $1,000 fine.

If this is how Lehman decided to celebrate a win, imagine what he would have done had PSU lost.

Behold...The Buckstache T-Shirt!

Yesterday, we put up a post about "The Buckstache" - our new name for the mustache in honor of the recent spate of facial-hair-loving Tosu fans, players and players-to-be getting in trouble with the law for a variety of offenses. We also created a mock design of what a "Buckstache" logo might look like.

Well, based on your comments and emails inquiring about it, you can now purchase your very own "Buckstache" gear in t-shirt, hat, magnet or sticker form.

On the tee, the Buckstache logo is on the front and "Beware the Buckstache" is written on the back. As for the Buckstache hat? It's trucker style. Naturally.

To get one of these dandies for you or that special Buckeye in your life so that his clothing can match his (or her) facial hair, check out our CafePress store.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Buckeyes Over Baghdad

These have been rough days for Ohio State. Well, not necessarily for Ohio State -- since the football team is considered a preseason number one by a few pundits -- just for folks who happen to be wearing some sort of Buckeye gear. From unemployed porn site user Mike Cooper being ruthlessly hunted by Carl Monday to Robert Bell taking a lightning fast beatdown from the furious fists of Tommy Zbikowski, the Buckeye logo has recently appeared at some rather, uh, unfortunate places.

But, thanks to the fine folks over at DEADSPIN, the Ohio State logo has caught a much needed break and finally made an appearance even we here at the MZone can support. Behold:

Since the M Zone has been rigorously piling on our scarlet and grey clad brethren, I figured it was time — if only for pity’s sake — to show another side of Buckeye fandom (consider this the M Zone equivalent of lowering Mike Cooper’s bail from $500,000 to $5,000). And more importantly, I want to wish a speedy and safe return home to Sgt. Knox (in the photo) and his fellow soldiers.

And here’s a suggestion for you Buckeye fans who stop by here from time to time and have the means to accomplish this: Should this young man be “back in the world” — Army talk for being in the U.S. — this fall, it would be really cool for someone to provide him and a few family members with complimentary tickets to The Game on 18 November. If not for his service to his country, then for providing that rare positive image of a Buckeye fan.

ED. NOTE: We agree with Baggy 100% here and even resisted the urge to add the following caption to the picture: "Haven't the Iraqi people suffered enough?" All kidding aside, it's pictures like this that should make us all -- Bucks and Wolverines alike -- appreciate how fortunate we are to be debating college football in the blogosphere while folks like Sgt. Knox are putting their lives on the line day in and day out. A sincere thanks to him and his fellow soldiers.

I Agree With Spartan Bob

Recently, I read on MGoBlog about an MSU site called Spartan Bob. For those of you not familiar with the this infamous name in U-M football history, "Spartan Bob" was the time keeper at Spartan Stadium during the M/MSU game in 2001 when the clock miraculously (and erroneously) stopped with :01 left in the game, leaving Michigan State time to run more play and beat #6 Michigan.

But I digress.

This blog with the great name (at least if you bleed Green and White) had an article slamming Michigan because Michigan wouldn't play any night games in the new ABC Saturday Night Football line up this fall, doesn't have advertising, blah, blah, blah and whatever else Sparty bitches about this time of year.

However, he did bring up a point I agree with 100%. In his post, SB had a link to a Michigan Daily article from last fall in which Michigan's Athletic Director wrote an email to approximately 2,000 students in the south endzone instructing them to remain seated most of the game!

“We are asking you to respect the other Wolverine fans by not standing for the entire game,” said Martin. "Students standing for long periods of time are subject to removal.”

Apparently, this was sent right before the 2005 Notre Dame game because, during the Northern Illinois game the previous weekend, "there were confrontations between the Michigan students and the fans who were sitting directly behind them" according to U-M Associate AD, Marty Bodnar.

In his post, Spartan Bob ripped into Michigan for that one - and rightfully so. What bullshit! Can you even imagine students in Columbus or Knoxville or Auburn or PICK ONE getting that sort of email from the AD?! No wonder the Big (Quiet) House sounds like the grad library the week before finals and provides the lamest "home field" advantage in all of college football!

As I said in my October 2005 post, "Put the damn keys away!", Michigan fans need to do more, much more, to make the Big House the intimidating venue it should be for opposing teams. Because like it or not, right now it's just embarrassing. And I for one hope folks like the person behind the Spartan Bob blog continue to call Michigan fans out until that changes.

The Buckstache

Over the last couple weeks, we'd be lying if we said we here at the MZone weren't getting a chuckle out of all the Ohio State fans, players and players-to-be getting busted for various run-ins with the law. Even funnier to us - the love of the mustache by all these Buckeye perps and pervs. Each one of them was sporting various degrees of the facial hair.

That's why we propose changing the name of the out-of-style-except-in-Columbus mustache to its new, more appropriate name: The Buckstache (or THE Buckstache for Ohio State purists) and giving it its own logo.


For many, many more Buckstache examples, CLICK HERE.