Archive Page 2

02
Jan
11

New Year’s Hangover 2011 Edition

Happy 2011 Everyone!

I’m not exactly sure when New Year’s Day morphed into the ultimate sporting day. Yes, there have always been bowl games–but in recent years the better bowl games have slid through until the middle of the month and other sports have staked their claim in the day. Whenever this transfiguration happened, I know that there was nothing I enjoyed more yesterday than having some sauerkraut and pork, Bloody Marys and watching 12 solid hours of sports.

Outback Bowl–Penn State vs. Florida

Oy vey Penn State. Oy Vey. What looked like a promising game–leading 17-14 at half time– turned into a train wreck right in front of our eyes. McGloin’s five interceptions marked the second lowest point of the PSU football season this year (only the loss to Illinois at homecoming ranks worse). What kills me about my favorite walk-on from Scranton is that he just is not a smart ball player. I counted no less than three times that the lane was clear and he could have rushed two or three yards for a first down–instead, he scrambles and tries a short pass to a receiver who isn’t looking–and gets picked off…FIVE times. Defenses can read him like a book. That being said, I do firmly believe he’s the best option Penn State has and I support JoePa’s decision to keep him in. There’s something a quarterback (should) learn when they get drummed like that and hopefully he can take this loss and use it to become a better QB for what is sure to be an ugly Penn State football season next year.

TCU vs. Wisconsin-Rose Bowl

Easily the best game of the day–TCU cemented their spot as an elite program in college football. Having knocked off Boise State last year, and a super-strong Wisconsin team this year. In my opinion, the final score of 21-19 does not accurately represent the complete and solid 60 minutes of football that TCU put together yesterday and I’m excited to see them dominate the Big East in 2012.

Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Washington Capitals

Is there anything better than the winter classic? The NHL has done an awesome job of thinking outside the box and branding a marquee game to excite fans and make the sport relevant half-way through the season. Heinz field looked awesome and even though the weather didn’t cooperate, and the Pens ended up losing, the game delivered on the hype and was really enjoyable to watch. I could complain about the refs, or the fact that Ovechkin is the biggest douche bag I’ve seen in a long time–but where is the fun in that? The winter classic isn’t so much about the game as it is the experience and I’m not worried for one second about the state of the Pens this years.

Syracuse vs. Notre Dame

The Syracuse Orange rolled to a 15-0 start this season–which sets up nicely for the January 17th showdown at Pitt. Kris Joseph and Rick Jackson are playing phenomenally and the team is deserving of their #5 ranking with quality wins against two top 20 teams (Michigan State and Notre Dame) and I’m excited to see where the season takes them. Hopefully Fab Melo will live nurse his achilles and live up to all the hype– I’m not quiiite ready to jump on the National Championship train–but man are they looking good ūüôā

What was your favorite sporting event yesterday–any surprises on how the games went? Learn anything new?¬†We’ll make sure to keep our BCS Bowl Fever tally up to date–but are running considerably far ahead of last year’s record.

Once again, Happy New Year!

–Sam

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30
Dec
10

We’re #1 (Today!)

Hello Everyone!

Well…we did it! What started out as a pet project last December — Chicks Dig Sports Too is officially one year old today!! It has been a fun, roller-coaster ride as we have documented 2010 in the sports world. While we don’t post as often as we want to (a New Year’s resolution!) we had fun looking into a variety of amazing sporting experiences this year–from best sports themes, to the Chicago Sports Challenge, to adding a new chick, The Vancouver Olympics, Ben Roethlisberger’s sticky situations and even covering Wrestlemania-we have had a blast writing our opinions and meeting so many AWESOME people! ūüôā

We’re looking forward to the sporting events of 2011 and continuing a lively and genuine debate next year and hopefully continuing to meet such amazing people while doing it ūüôā We have some fun things planned in 2011 and can’t wait to share our sporting experiences with you–we promise to post more–come hell or high water.

It’s a tough call, but our best sports experience this year was meeting JT Thomas and Robin Cole from the Pittsburgh Steelers while shopping in the strip district of daaaahntahhhn Pittsburgh unexpectedly in November and seeing the Super Bowl 13 ring up close and personal…even if the pics came out blurry!

JT Thomas, Yours Truly, Robin Cole

Cole's SB 13 Ring...and a Black & Gold Cheesecake

So a big THANK YOU to everyone that reads this lil ol’ blog…and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

–Sam

P.S. If you haven’t read our second annual BCS Bowl Fever Post…what are you waiting for? ūüôā

23
Dec
10

BCS Bowl Fever!!

Happy Holidays Everyone!! ūüôā I hope everyone has a great holiday season and a happy new year. For me, there really isn’t a better time of year for sports–the NFL playoff puzzle is in full swing, college basketball has begun, bowl games are right around the corner, Sidney Crosby is dominating the NHL and I manage to catch a few Bulls games or two.

In the excitement of this time of year, we’ve included our second annual BCS Bowl Fever post–in which we lock in our choices for all the BCS (and one PSU) games.¬† Laur and I are in different time zones right now and prepping for the holiday season, so let’s hope Santa delivers her bowl picks before January 1st!

Outback Bowl-Florida vs. Penn State-January 1st- (1pm-ABC)

Shocker! I’m going to take the Nittany¬†Lions on this one–well, because I have to. Factor in that it’s going to be Urban Meyer’s last game (or so he says) and the speculation of it possibly being JoePa’s¬†last game (Gruden¬†as a replacement? I LOVE this rumor!) and I give the edge to the Lions. McGloin¬†has turned into a pretty decent quarterback (as long as those “moxie” sayings are NOT in the mix), Royster¬†had a great second half of the season and the defense is fairly reliable. I think if the team knows this is JoePa’s last game then, for sure they can rally and put together 60 minutes of solid football to knock off the gators.

Joe Pa ‚̧

ÔĽŅÔĽŅÔĽŅÔĽŅÔĽŅÔĽŅCotton Bowl – Alabama vs. Michigan State-January 1st (1pm ESPN)

Gotta go with ‘Bama¬†on this one. As much as I have formed a disdain for this team–(the “McElroy hasn’t lost since middle school stat was by far the most irritating of the year) ‘Bama¬†is no push over. Couple that with the fact that Michigan State just isn’t that¬†good of a team. They really aren’t–they stood out in a depleted Big Ten this year, but chalked up a loss to Iowa and didn’t have to play perrenial¬†powerhouse Ohio State. I expect them to easily be overtaken by the former¬†National Champ ‘Bama on this one.

Rose Bowl —TCU vs. Wisconsin–January 1st (5pm, ESPN)

I love that the BCS put TCU¬†in this game–unlike the schlubbing¬†from last year in which the BCS put two Cinderella darlings against each other–this is TCU’s¬†chance to prove their worth on the second biggest stage of the bowl season. Wisconsin won’t go down without a fight–an impressive win at Ohio State and an eeked¬†out victory over Iowa works in their favor leading their steady march to a Big Ten Championship.¬†This should prove to be an exciting game and I think that TCU¬†will¬†excel on the big stage and¬†notch a W which will prep them nicely for a transfer to The Big East in 2012.

Tostitos Fiesta Bowl — UConn vs. Oklahoma— January 1st (8:30pm-ESPN)

I’m taking Oklahoma in what is the most lopsided BCS match-up of the year. Enough said.

Discover Orange Bowl –Stanford vs. Virginia Tech — January 3rd¬†(8pm ESPN)

This¬†should be a good match-up, but I’m going to¬†have to take Stanford. Virginia Tech put together a nice little season after a really¬†rough start to the year (JMU¬†anyone?) but I think the¬†PAC-10¬†offensive¬†style of play will lead the charge here. Add in that Stanford is more than likely ridiculously salty about not being invited to the Rose Bowl and you have all the necessary ingredients for a¬†Hokie¬†beatdown.

Allstate Sugar Bowl –Ohio State vs. Arkansas–January 4 (8:30pm ESPN)

This is going to be a GOOD game–but I’m giving¬†the edge to Arkansas. Ryan Mallet has been a great leader for the team and has matured into a solid quarterback since leaving an ineffective for his talents offense in Ann Arbor. Ohio State is no stranger to nationally televised bowl games–but has a history of choking. Both offenses can be explosive–so it’s all going¬†to come down to defense but I think the Razorbacks are going to scratch out a win–the perfect way to end an almost storybook like season for the Arkansas program.

Tostitos¬†BCS Championship Game–Oregon vs. Auburn–January 10th (8:30pm ESPN)

Before the analysis, I just want to say how thrilled I am that the usual suspect (Florida, Bama, OSU) are NOT a part of this game. I’m a huge fan of¬† BCS shake-ups..and while both of these teams have undoubtedly earned the right to play for the national championship I don’t think anyone would have placed these two in the title game back in September.

That being said..I’m REALLY looking forward to this game ūüôā¬† This is going to be a shoot out folks, the game features 2 of the top 7 offenses in college football. Auburn has undoubtedly, had the more impressive road to its national championship appearance and Hesiman winner Cam Newton has¬†had a ridiculously impressive season..¬†but I think the Duck’s 15th ranked scoring defense will be the deciding factor in this one. Look for an exciting game with the Ducks quacking their way to a BCS title.

Offensive Powerhouses

What are your predictions for the above games? You know we love a healthy debate here on Chicks Dig Sports…Let’s hear it! ūüôā

Happy Holidays!

–Sam

06
Oct
10

Playoffs! Divisional Series Show Down!

Ok ok, by now, you know we absolutely ADORE fall. Other than a plethora of football games to choose from every Sunday and the beginning of the NHL season–we also get the best and most exciting baseball series’ of the year! There’s NOTHING like October baseball. The importance of every game is tangible and sometimes it gets lost in the every day shuffle of a 162 game season. While I occasionally get distracted from baseball¬†by other fun summer activities (just ask @ihatejjredick…I’m not sure the last time I even¬†perused the action in our¬†fantasy¬†league), my eyes are glued to baseball in October. While not unexpected, neither Chicago team is in the hunt for a championship this year…shocker. So true to Chicks Dig Sports¬†fashion–here’s our last minute-quick and dirty picks for the divisional series.

Cincinnati Reds vs. Philadelphia Phillies

While it should be crystal clear that I’m absolutely NO fan of anything Philadelphia, (not even its¬† cheese steak), the Phillies¬†are the one thing from¬†¬†that city that¬†doesn’t irk every fiber of my being. Maybe it’s because I went to too many games at the Vet growing up, but dare I say, the Phillies¬†are actually likeable. The killer rotation of Halladay, Oswalt¬†and Hamels¬† is frightening to opposing¬†teams. Add in the playoff experience of this team-Utley, Werth, Rollins and they should be set up for a nice divisional series. The Cincinnati¬†Reds, who are making their first playoff appearance in 15 years and have showed¬†a spark all season, won’t be doormats. But experience will lead the Phillies¬†to victory. (Prediction-Phillies in 3)

Atlanta Braves vs. San Francisco Giants

Much like the Phillies, the Giants have a killer pitching rotation. However, different from the Phillies, I don’t think they’re going to win their divisional series. Why you ask? Well, Atlanta has a lot more to play for-since its¬†legend Bobby Cox’s final tour in the Major Leagues–this motivation should give them the edge over the Giants. Let’s not forget either that the Braves led the majors with 25 victories in its final at bat–separate from the team’s 45 comeback victories. It truly isn’t over ’til it’s over with this team and I think, although¬†the Giants will put up a valiant effort)¬†they’re primed to move to the NLCS. (Prediction: Braves in 5)

Texas Rangers  vs. Tampa Bay Rays

I like the Rays in this one. Entering the post season for the third consecutive year (twice as AL East Champions) the Rays are HUNGRY for a World Series title. The little team that could–that has to give away tickets to home games, no less–shows no signs of letting up until they win the big prize. They’ve cooled off a little since jumping out to a 34-18 record over the first two month of play–albeit SLIGHTLY. The Rangers, who are making their first playoff appearance in 11 years have some great talent–but in their three previous playoff runs, they’ve exited in the ALDS–this year should prove no different. (Prediction: Rays in 4)

Minnesota Twins vs. New York Yankees

The New York Yankees begin their title defense the same way last year‚Äôs run to a championship began, with a¬† division¬†series rematch against the Minnesota Twins.¬† Both teams are coming off of abysmal September’s and although the Twins have home field advantage and the Yankees have lost in the divisional series the previous three times they entered as a wild card, I think the Yanks have the edge due to C.C. Sabbathia. Who, if necessary, will be ready for a game 5. Sabbathia¬†is one of the most dominant pitchers in the game and has beaten the Twins the last six times he’s faced them. This will tip the scales to the Yankees favor. (prediction: Yankees in 4)

Are you ready for some playoff baseball? Who you got in the various divisional series?

Talk to us people ūüôā

Sam

02
Oct
10

Icing the Pens

As many of you know–Chicks Dig Sports Too pledged to take the Chicago Sports Challenge : where we immerse ourselves in Chicago sports culture. We have an unexpected post¬†courtesy of Durkins–my neighborhood¬†Steelers bar.¬†After winning a raffle¬†on Friday night,¬†my¬†high-school buddy Jess and I¬†were whisked away (via party limo, no less) ¬†to the¬†Blackhawks game–and they just so happened to be playing¬†my Pittsburgh Penguins (Crosby, Fleury and the whole gang¬† :-))

High School Buddies ūüôā

This was my first time at the United Center for a¬†sporting event. It’s true–there isn’t a bad seat in the house. Sitting¬†in the 300’s, we had an excellent view of all the action on the ice (yes, even those two goals scored by MaryANN…gag me).¬†It was¬†also my first sporting event¬†while I was in Chicago as a faithful member of the opposing team. I really had no idea what¬†I was in store for.

Getting there right before the start of the game–I really enjoyed the pump-up video to get the fans going. Strangely enough, nothing screams hockey like the Pirates of the Caribbean¬†theme song and a killer light show. Paired with the “tunnel-vision” camera of the Hawks walking to the ice and everyone was raring to go. One thing I don’t get–that I was glad to experience as its specific to Blackhawk culture–is the yelling, screaming and making noise during the national anthem. I just don’t understand it and find it fairly disrespectful-to the country and the singer–who actually was quite good. I know that incorporating fun things in the anthem is all the rage these days (“O!” for Syracuse, “Hail” for Michigan etc.) but I think just making noise is kind of weird. That being said–it definitely continues to pump everyone up for the game at hand–there’s absolutely NO LULL in excitement and support from the fans, from the moment you walk into the United Center to the moment you leave–and I can dig that.

Hawks Pre-Game

¬†¬†I was impressed by the Chicago fans for a few reasons: the arena was packed by face/0ff. Even for a pre-season game, the support of the fans was tangible–with fans genuinely enthralled¬†and paying attention to¬†the game. Additionally, I thought–overall–the fans were pretty classy. Never toeing the line of acceptable obnoxious sports behavior–and as we all know the tendency gets greater when you are CRUSHING the opposition–¬†¬†I was¬†met with a variety of¬†awesome comments–“We’ll see you in the Stanley Cup” being the¬†one most popular. ¬†Also, we were allowed the ability to cheer–often loudly–for our team, with little to no friction from home team fans. This is hard to find in the sporting world today (I’m looking at you, Philadelphia) so I appreciate the positive atmosphere.

311 Heaven

One thing I did notice, “The Song”, yes that one is NOT as much fun when it’s being played against your team (over and over). However, it was really cool to be in the UC and experience the goal celebration ritual that I’ve come so accustomed to through television.

Goal Celebration

One thing that I was disappointed in was the mass exodus of Blackhawks¬†fans with 4:41 left in the third period. Yes, you were killing us 4-1, and yes, it’s a pre-season game. And yes you’re always going to have people everywhere ¬†that miss the whole point of sports–that saving an extra 20 minutes in the parking lot is worth abandoning your team–but the¬†mass exodus¬†of people leaving was alarming. When MaryAnn¬†put the nail even further in the coffin by scoring his second goal of the night-no one was there to cheer. That would have NEVER happened in Pittsburgh–in fact, it would have been over their dead body–even if they were losing by five.¬† And last night, when¬†we¬†were getting slaughtered, we stayed till the game was¬†over and cheered like CRAZY when we finally¬†got on the board, because you don’t leave your team behind–win or lose. Just an observation¬†we¬†Yinzers noticed last night–but I’m completely willing to give the fans another shot before passing final judgement. One thing’s for sure–the fans awareness of the game and enthusiasm for it drowns out Cubs fans–hands down. And let’s get serious–if they were playing anyone OTHER than the Pens, I would have been in my glory.

The game ended and we strolled back to our party limo (singing the¬†Pittsburgh Polka, natch) and returned back to the comfy nook of Lincoln Park. While it’s always fun to go to sporting events, this¬†experience was elevated to a different level of awesome as it was completely unexpected–and a great ending to a long week!

We are going to the White Sox game tonight–so look for a recap tomorrow ūüôā

Was anyone else at the game last night? What is your favorite Blackhawks¬†ritual? and, most importantly, HOW THE HELL CAN YOU ALL OPENLY EMBRACE MARYANN¬†HOSSA??? ūüėČ

Talk to us people,

Sam

28
Sep
10

Blah Blah Blah NFL Negotiations Blah

The owners and NFLPA¬†meet today for the first time in what seems like forever to help stave off a potential lockout/strike for the 2011 season. With teams giving the go-ahead for the union to decertify¬†left and right, we’re getting a little (read: A LOT) concerned about the state of the 2011 NFL season. Yes, on one hand it’s incredibly infuriating that you have¬†millionaire crying about being treated unfairly (players), while you have¬†billionaires who¬†are too stubborn to lose a fraction of their income (owners). ¬†It can seem to be a bit much to keep track of, so Laura and I are here to provide the quick and dirty guide on a few of the¬†hot-button topics between the owner and the NFLPA.

18 Game Schedule

Laura: Hmmm, an 18 game schedule. I am not sure this is a subject I SHOULD have an opinion on. After all, I am a lowly PR professional and have never had the determination, strength or ability to compete at a high level in sports. I only like to watch it on TV and generally prefer that someone else entertain me with insane grabs in the end zone (Devin Hester, you are ridiculous!) , beautiful spirals and the crunch of great tackle when helmet meets pads. I work hard at my job daily and sometimes stress or longer hours makes me eat a little less healthy or feel worn out. But I don’t put my longevity and health on the line weekly for the entertainment of others.

I don‚Äôt want to hear it‚Äôs what they get paid for. I know that, I went to college. I am just pointing out, it‚Äôs not really for me to have an opinion on whether or not they should put their big, strong bodies against other insanely strong and big bodies for more games that count during the season. The risks here are high. What I will do is point out¬†a few¬†pros and cons if the 18 games will be passed (and it’s looking more likely every day.)

Pros

–¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Everyone will make more money (players, owners, merchandisers, television stations etc).

–¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† The football season (that matters) will be longer, I love that, it‚Äôs too short already.

–¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Fans will love it–two more weeks of tailgating, drinking and screaming on Sunday? Sold.

 Cons

–¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† No matter how you slice it, the athletes’ careers will be shorter

–¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Preseason serves a purpose–one of my favorite players of all time is Tom Waddle, he would have never seen a start in a Bears uniform if it weren‚Äôt for his preseason performance. There are countless other examples that verify this claim–see: Sam’s Dennis Dixon.

–¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬† Playoffs may prove to be less exciting as two more games every season are undeniably going to wear these guys out.

–¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†There could be ¬†more tragedy in the game.¬†An increased¬†schedule increasing the chances of injury.¬†¬†

Rookie Salary Cap

Sam: Unlike Laura, I do have an opinion and, if you know me a loud one ūüôā I’m siding with the NFLPA¬†on this one. There absolutely, 100% SHOULD be a rookie salary cap. How many times have we seen a rookie sign a ridiculous contract for a crazy amount of money and get hurt in the beginning of the season because of the heightened level of play? Matt Stafford, Kellen Winslow Jr. and my boy Paul Posluzny come to mind.

Or worse yet, how about when a player is signed and just plain SUCKS in the NFL? Akilli¬†Smith? David Carr? Carson Palmer (yes he SUCKS), JAMARCUS¬†RUSSELL¬†or Ki-Jana Carter? These 22-year-old¬†kids enter the NFL and are set financially for life before they take their first snap on the field. What’s worse, is that if their proposed contract isn’t at a tacky and gaudy level-well, then they hold out and refuse to sign. Before they step foot on the field. See, I’m in this camp that you have to PROVE your worth before you get a diva attitude and I agree with the NFLPA that the money that, more often than not, is WASTED on rookie talent would serve a better purpose to veteran players that have already proved their worth and have sacrificed their bodies for the game.

Perecentage of Revenue to Players

Currently, players receive 59% of owner revenue for salary purposes–a¬†percentage¬†which the owners want to decrease citing increased¬†costs. Which, let’s get serious, is a bullshit claim. Even with the recession, the owners are making an ISH load of money…the average NFL team is valued at 1.2 billion dollars–down from 1.4 billion last year. While that drop is alarming, it doesn’t justify screwing the players to a lower percentage of revenue. They are the money makers, they are the ones that sacrifice their bodies (albeit for a ridiculous amount of money). I do not watch football to see Jerry Jones or Al Davis (although they think I do), I watch it for the ATHLETES. The amount of money that it costs a FAN (’cause that’s who it’s really all about..right? ;)) to go see a game is ABSURD, and I do not believe it’s because the players take 59% of revenue. I believe it’s ’cause the owners are greedy and mark the hell up out of their product. It’s simple, we all do, that’s good business, but what’s bad business is to be a cheap skate and screw your employees and make them disgruntled.¬† Need more proof? see Clark Griswold’s reaction below to finding out that his Christmas bonus is to be enrolled in a Jelly Of The Month Club ūüėČ

OOOOH we KNOW you have opinions.

Lay ’em on us!

–Laura and Sam

20
Sep
10

Tailgating: What’s College Without It?

Two weeks ago¬†I had the opportunity to travel to Columbus, OH for business.¬† Much like Sam, my favorite time during my job is when my two favorite things, sports and public relations combine. This ‚Äúbusiness‚ÄĚ just happened to center around The Ohio State vs. Miami football game, a game that was being hailed throughout the previous week as THE game to watch. Did it turn out to be a great game? Not really. Unless a great game to you is watching one team dominate the other in all three arenas ‚Äď offense, defense and special teams. And, I suppose if you‚Äôre an Ohio State fan, this is the type of game you like to watch.

Buckeye Stadium

The real impact made from my trip to campus had more to do with pre-game traditions. I went to a very small school and while I received a wonderful education, met solid people, developed solid friendships and good memories ‚Äď I never tailgated. Can you believe it? I truly believe there is something missing from your college experience when you don‚Äôt. Maybe that is why I love college football so much now, in my mid-twenties. The tailgaters¬†at The Ohio State seem to know how to do it right. Everyone from age 0-60¬†was dressed in red and white. They brought grills, boom boxes, games, magazines, padded chairs, you name it. And the best part– they offer every passerby to share in their tailgate. They try and¬†welcome strangers in as family and I was offered several beers while perusing the various set ups. The air was slightly chilled that day, perfect for football and comradery. The spirit in the air and people yelling O-H-I-O as they walked into the stadium for kick off gave me goose bumps. And while I didn‚Äôt get to see the game, I was happy to be on campus to just get that special Big Ten tailgate feeling.

Tailgating at OSU

What is your best tailgating memory? Was your school big on it? Is it college football WITHOUT the tailgating?

Talk to us, we’d love to hear!

–Laura




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