NFL Replacement Referees Running Ridiculous

It is safe to say the NFL replacement referees are in indeed a ridiculous bunch.

Ever since the quarrel between the NFL owners and referees over a management-labor situation…..basically a “who wants to earn the more money” situation.  Such a money-grubbing business……but then again that is all professional athletics.

The NFL owners don’t want to pay the Refs their hefty pension, pretty good deal for only working 16 games out of the year.  The owners want to roll back their pension.  Any employee no longer receiving the guaranteed money they were promised by their employers is going to cause some outbursts.  Then again, why are refs getting pension at all when they work once a week for less than half a year?  Dayum, sign me up.

The veteran refs said they have already planned their retirement based on this pension.  Fine.  Let those veteran refs get the pension and have the league hire new refs and get them off the pension.  Is it that hard to hire new refs, new reliable and experienced NFL refs?  Well, based on the performances of these new replacements refs……I guess it is.

These replacement refs are unfortunately not cutting it.  There are construction sites safer than NFL stadiums right now.  The refs have been calling terrible plays and sometimes not even calling plays at all, especially personal fouls.   This labor dispute is not only compromising the 32 arrogant NFL owners and 121 headstrong referees but more importantly the health and safety of the players.  You know, the big guys on the field who actually do the REAL work and PLAY the game!

This disagreement seems like it is going to lead to more than just empty pockets and angry faces, more or less some broken bones and broken spirits.  The responsibility shouldn’t be to your wallets, it should be to the safety of the players, the ones who draw the crowds, make the money, make the game!

The NFL’s effort to save money has made a mockery of the league and put its legitimacy into question.  Is the game of football really being tarnished by all of this??  The ones who are truly suffering in all of this are the players and spectators….you…the audience…the fans!

Some officials as well as players are so frustrated by the situation that they can’t keep their mouth shut.  One former official, Jerry Markbreit, blasted the league this last week claiming that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell just doesn’t care, “”It’s obvious to me that (Goodell) just doesn’t even care. Otherwise, how could they replace professionalism with unprofessionalism in a game that’s so tough to work, even for the best officials in the land? How could he care about it?”

Markbreit is confident that the refs and the league officiating will inevitably deteriorate, “”These guys have relied on competent, top-notch, terrific officials all these years. And now they have a bunch of amateurs out there and it’s going to fall apart.  It’s not going to get better, as the commissioner said … It’s going to get worse.”

Great, sounds like a party.  In the replacement refs defense, defensive linemen for the New York Giants Justin Tuck said it best, placing the blame on the NFL for this unfortunate predicament, “I am more upset with the NFL for not handling this and taking care of this in due time, I guess. I think the replacement officials are doing their best in a very sticky situation for them.”  Very true….very true. These refs aren’t trying to fail and make terrible calls, they are just in a newer bigger and badder arena.  They aren’t used to the NFL and are probably scared shitless to even step foot next to Ray Lewis.  But for the rest of us, we are just used to the best officiating and don’t want to settle for anything less.  The NFL is forcing us to settle……bastards……and we just have to bite our tongue and pray that a resolution will be made sooner rather than later…..Let the good times roll boys.  Oh wait, Jerry Jones has something to say….

The wannabe George Steinbrenner of the NFL, Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, expressed different sentiments about the situation, downplaying the impact the replacement refs are having on the football games, “You’ve got to remember that you’ve got all kinds of complaints at any time about officiating,” Jones said Tuesday on KRLD-FM. “Did you happen to notice that the ones that were complaining the most, if it were from within, were the players and coaches on the losing teams? Hello. I don’t even have to look at the games or the dates on the newspaper, just hand me one from 30 years ago and it’ll be the same thing — they’re complaining about the officiating.”

Hmmmmm.. sorry Mr. Jones I beg to differ.  Yes, I agree that it is inevitable that coaches and players will often disagree with officials and their decisions, but this is quite a different matter.  This matter is jeopardizing the integrity of the game.  The calls these refs are making aren’t just some lousy calls for fan interference or excessive celebration, these are a lack of calls that can lead to harmful outcomes for the players.  The safety of the players should be the number one priority of everyone involved in the NFL.  Even the hot dog vendors at Candlestick park want Alex Smith to be well protected and healthy.  If he doesn’t get a call for roughing the passer or holding and in consequence breaks his nose or elbow…..then we have a problem.

The poor officiating has created an unstable environment that is going to get somebody badly injured.  The owners and refs need to make a compromise, for God sakes…..no wait…the PLAYERS sake.   So players can get back to the real work without the worry of ridiculous referees running the show into the ground.  Do it for the dedicated fans who not only bring you the cha-ching but give the games the passion and emotion that unites everyone, making the sport of football special and important.  Come on, this is the NFL, it should start acting like it.  

Kiffin go bye bye

Lane Kiffin is one weird dude.

USC head coach Kiffin abruptly ended a post practice news conference on the field after he was asked by a reporter about an injured player.  After answering one question (a total of 30 seconds) he said, “I gotta go,” almost seeming displeased to answer the questions, and then he bolted off the field.   Literally…..jogging away.  What gives Kiffy?

Here, you can check out the real awkward Lane Kiffin moment yourself: usc-coach-lane-kiffin-ends-news-conference-reporter-asks-injured-player

Apparently there is some sort of ridiculous policy with USC, requesting that the media who have the chance to make it practice  “not report on strategy or injuries that are observed during the course of watching that practice or result from that practice.”  Wtf?  That’s what the media does, report on what matters….and injuries on athletic teams, especially teams who are (were?) supposedly championship bound.  Sorry SC, but that policy is ridiculously absurd.  You can’t hide injured players in Narnia for long….you know injuries do heal.

The USC Trojans are definitely under a media microscope ever since their 21-14 loss to Stanford last Saturday, quite the Pac-12 upset….and this is only GAME 3?!

A chunk of everybody’s dream in SoCal evaporated after that loss, winning a national championship and Barkley taking home the coveted Heisman trophy.  Barkley is still talking to the press admirably and swallowing his “shame” from last week, because let’s face it….it wasn’t pretty for the guy, completing only 20 of his 41 passes  for 254 yards with zero touchdowns and two interceptions.  Yea, that is still a slow soothing pain just typing that 😦

Hopefully Barkley’s dismal performance will ignite a fire for him and the Trojans who take on the Cal Bears Saturday at the Coliseum.  If you have to lose, better to lose to a ranked conference team early in the season rather than later, where it seems to count more.

Can he kiss Heisman goodbye?  It’s hard to say.  It is so early in the season that he and the Trojans can rally and win every game the rest of the season with Barkley throwing 6 touchdown passes.  Considering their somewhat difficult schedule as well as the “oh holy” conference that is the SEC, SC is headed towards some troubled waters.

The Cal game will determine whether the Trojans can rally.  Also, to see if Kiffin can give the running game a break and call some effective pass plays, for freaking ONCE in a game.  Good God was that ever frustrating.  Maybe that was the looming question that haunts him, praying and hoping the press don’t ask him the embarrassing question about the Trojans total running game  against Stanford, a whopping 26 yards.  No wonder he darted for the door.  At least he left the media before munching on some Coliseum grass……oh wait.

 

Cubano no quiero

Ohhh Mark Cuban.  Will you ever shut that big mouth of yours?

(Probably not, so this is why all the sports blogshpere goes kaboom when this guy speaks….how entertaining)

Dallas Mavericks Owner, Mark Cuban, has recently dismissed the Los Angeles Lakers offseason moves this summer, making the comment that the NBA season will not be decided before it begins.  Obviously he is talking about the doosey of a Laker trade, getting rid of Andrew Bynum and picking up Steve Nash and Dwight Howard in return (yeah-yah!).

When this Steinbrenner wannabe doesn’t get what he wants or when things aren’t going so well for his Mavericks, he let’s everybody know about it:

“The Lakers have done this before,” Cuban said. “Remember Gary Payton, Karl Malone and Kobe and Shaq were all together, and it didn’t work.

“It takes great chemistry, like coach (Rick Carlisle) alluded to, it takes guys wanting to be there — I don’t know if all their guys want to be there — it’s going to be interesting.

“Look, (the Lakers are) going to be a great team, but I remember when we made our run,” Cuban said. “We weren’t supposed to win any series. The Lakers were defending champs when we swept them, and they had everybody back. A lot of teams do a great job winning the summer, but I never get so antsy about what happens over the summer.”

[…]

“The CBA now isn’t just about money,” Cuban said. “Now it is about flexibility as well. And, for instance, going to the Lakers, this time next year, they wouldn’t be able to do a deal for Steve Nash. … The Nets and some other teams who have just said, ‘we’re going to spend whatever it takes,’ that is their team for a long time. Somebody gets hurt, something happens or it doesn’t work, they’ve got big problems.”

Almost politician like….don’t you think?

Hmmmmmm…didn’t that Laker squad work perfectly well?……despite Malone’s injury on top of the Kobe and Shaq-tastic feud.  I think it did work Cuban.  The Lakers dominated the league on pace to win 66 games and make it to the conference finals.  The only reason they were defeated in the Western Conference Finals by the Pistons is because Malone got injured AGAIN, his knee no less.  The Pistons were a healthier team.  It wasn’t because of bad chemistry.

 

 

Cuban does make a point about chemistry though.  Who knows what will happen with these two new players coming into an already older veteran squad.  Remember in Miami?  Things didn’t go as planned for the Heat until their second year together as the three musketeers.  Damn Lebron, now he has a ring.  Sigh…..

It is known that Kobe and Dwight don’t have the best relationship.  But in the scheme of things, I think they can set their differences aside and play some competitive ball.  Nash is going to have to learn some  more defense than offense if you know what I mean.  I know the dude can assist and run down the court till the cows come home, but can he guard these young point guards?  I’m sure it will be a good season just as long as nobody gets injured.  

I just love the burn Cuban gives, “I don’t know if all their guys want to be there.”  What a bitch.  The only one who didn’t want to be there isn’t there anymore.  He is in Philly, praying to GOD his risky knee surgery in Switzerland this summer will save his NBA career.  Dwight obviously wants to be there now, even though the Lakers might have been his second choice, he is making the most of it.  It’s like getting into your second college choice, hey man, it’s better than getting into NO college, just take a keg stand and enjoy life.

It is long ways away to say who is going to dominate the NBA this upcoming season.  Ahem….CUBAN.  Who knows, the Mavericks chemistry can come out of nowhere, leaving the Lakers forlorn and defeated.  However, there is more pressure on the Lakers to perform this season….well not according to Catty Cuban.  Who is to say that both teams might fall watching a much younger team pass them by to the championship finals (cough: cough : Thunder)

Even though I am quick to judge Cuban and his snarky remarks, he could have been talking to a different audience, an audience full of Maverick fans, sponsors, donors, etc.  I am not the ideal audience to catch wind of his comments.  Nevertheless, you got to hand it to Mark Cuban to really piss you off in this “snore” of a Laker offseason.    I mean seriously, can you name another owner who has been photographed with the championship trophy before the actual team and coaches, who WON the freaking game, has?!