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Posts Tagged ‘AUTHOR:DOC HANCOCK’

Doc Hancock’s Grand Tour Of C-USA: Central Florida Knights

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on August 13, 2008

Central Florida Knights

Head Coach: George O’Leary (22-28, 4 years at Central Florida, 74-61 overall)

Stadium: Bright House Networks Stadium (45,323)

2007 Record: 10-4 (7-1 C-USA East)

Postseason: Lost to Mississippi State 10-3 in Liberty Bowl

Key Returnees On Offense: TE Corey Rabazinski, WRs Rocky Ross and Kamar Aiken

Key Returnees On Defense: DE Bruce Miller, NT Torrell Troup, FS Jason Venson, SS Sha’Reff Rashad, CBs Johnell Neal and Joe Burnett, LBs Derrick Hallman and Chance Henderson

The Skinny: After rising from the ashes of a winless season in 2004 and winning two East Division titles in three years as well as a conference championship, the good times for the most part will continue in Orlando despite the losses of Kevin Smith at running back and Kyle Israel at quarterback. In their place will be QB Michael Greco, who in 2007 completed 24 of 45 passes for 303 yards and RB Phillip Smith, who ran for 246 yards in 2007 with 4 touchdowns. But don’t call the offense a bunch of greenhorns, because the Knights are returning receivers Rocky Ross and and Kamar Aiken, who are the team’s top two receivers and will be keys to showing Greco the ropes as he starts his first season as the starting quarterback.

On defense, the cupboard is stocked with standouts such as safeties Jason Venson and Sha’Reff Rashad, who are back after leading the team in tackles in 2007. Along with the two, the Knights are returning cornerbacks Johnell Neal and Joe Burnett. Burnett received all-conference honors in 2007 while Neal is known best for his quickness.

Doc’s Prediction: The Knights’ dream season last year is a culmination of four years of building from an 0-11 season in 2004 to the present-day program. Expect in 2008 the same thing from the Knights, strong contenders with Southern Mississippi and East Carolina for the C-USA East crown.

Projected Record: 9-4 (6-2 C-USA East)

2008 Central Florida Knights

August 30th-South Carolina State

September 6th- South Florida

September 20th-@ Boston College

September 27th-@ UTEP

October 4th-Southern Methodist

October 11th-@ Miami

October 26th-@ Tulsa

November 2nd-East Carolina

November 8th-Southern Miss

November 15th-@ Marshall

November 22nd-@ Memphis

November 29th-UAB

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Doc Hancock’s Grand Tour Of C-USA: Rice Owls

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on August 5, 2008

Rice Owls

Head Coach: David Baliff (3-9 in 1 year at Rice, 24-24 overall)

Stadium: Rice Stadium (70,000)

2007 Record: 3-9, (3-5 C-USA West)

Postseason: None

Key Returnees On Offense: QB Chase Clement, WRs Jarrett Dillard, Tommy Henderson, Toren Dixon, TE Taylor Wardlow

Key Returnees On Defense: CB Brandon King, DEs Cheta Ozougwu and Scott Solomon, FS Andrew Sendejo

The Skinny: After returning to a bowl for the first time in 46 years, Rice fell on hard times in 2007, going 3-5 in conference play and 3-9 overall. Of course, Rice was marred by countless injuries in David Baliff’s first season but showed glimmers of hope on October 3rd when they defeated Southern Miss in Hattiesburg and gave Tulsa a scare in the final game of the 2007 season at home. With senior QB Chase Clement returning to Houston for his senior year after throwing for 3,377 yards and 29 touchdowns and a talented trio of receivers in Dillard, Henderson, and Dixon, the offense should be again a talented unit should they not be beset by injuries.

On defense, the Owls will have Scott Solomon returning after leading the team in sacks with 4.5 and Sendejo who had 5 interceptions to lead the team. Expect leadership to come from the upperclassmen as the Owls look to regroup from a disappointing season in Houston.

Doc’s Prediction: There should be no excuse for the Owls to have the kind of season they had in 2007 although the team had a large number of injuries that doomed their campaign and they really did not have any solid backups to plug into the gaping holes on both sides of the ball. With road games against Memphis, Vanderbilt, Texas, and Tulsa, plus the season-ending showdown with crosstown rival Houston, there’s no such thing as winnable games for the Owls.

Projected Record: 5-7 (4-4 C-USA West)

2008 Rice Owls:

August 29th-SMU

September 6th-@ Memphis

September 13th-@ Vanderbilt

September 20th-@ Texas

September 27th-North Texas

October 4th-@ Tulsa

October 18th-Southern Mississippi

October 25th-@ Tulane

November 1st-@ UTEP

November 8th-Army

November 22nd-Marshall

November 29th-Houston

Posted in NCAA Football | Tagged: , , | 1 Comment »

Doc Holliday’s Grand Tour Of C-USA: Tulsa Golden Hurricane

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on August 4, 2008

Tulsa Golden Hurricane

Head Coach: Todd Graham (2nd season at UT, 17-10 overall record, 10-4 in 1 year at Tulsa)

Stadium: H.A. Chapman Stadium (35,542)

2007 Record: (10-4, 6-2 C-USA West)

Postseason: Beat Bowling Green 63-7 in the GMAC Bowl

Key Returnees on Offense: FB Charles Clay, RB Jamad Williams

Key Returnees on Defense: DE Moton Hopkins, LB George Clinkscale, CB Kenny D. Simms, S Charles Davis

The Skinny: Several years ago, Tulsa football was hardly a blip on the scene until current Louisville coach Steve Kragthorpe came into town and resurrected a once-program that would claim their first Conference USA title in 2006 and follow that with a share of the C-USA West Division title under new coach Todd Graham. The only constant in those two years was the fact that the Golden Hurricane had record-setting quarterback Paul Smith anchoring the Hurricane’s potent offense attack.

As with other things in our lives, good things like having a quarterback who puts up Madden-like numbers on a regular basis shall come to an end and in Tulsa’s case, the Paul Smith era has made way for senior David Johnson, who only attempted 8 passes in 2007 for 56 yards. With Johnson’s experience and offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn’s system, expect Johnson to have a productive year leading the Tulsa offense.

On defense, the Golden Hurricane welcome back DE’s Moton Hopkins and Kenny Sims, guys who will bring leadership to a relatively young defense. That being said, Tulsa football again should be on the rise again as it continues its return to glory.

Doc’s Prediction: With a favorable schedule working in Tulsa’s favor, including trips to Arkansas and Houston in what will be a showdown for the C-USA West crown, there’s no doubt that Tulsa will again rule the roost in Conference USA and play here in Memphis for the second time in three years.

Projected Record: 12-2 (7-1 C-USA West)

2008 Tulsa Golden Hurricane

August 30th-@ UAB

September 6th-@ North Texas

September 20th-New Mexico

September 27th-Central Arkansas

October 4th-Rice

October 11th-@ Southern Methodist

October 18th-UTEP

October 26th-Central Florida

November 1st-@ Arkansas

November 15th-@ Houston

November 22nd-Tulane

November 29th-@ Marshall

Posted in NCAA Football | Tagged: , , | Comments Off on Doc Holliday’s Grand Tour Of C-USA: Tulsa Golden Hurricane

Doc Holliday’s Grand Tour Of C-USA: Memphis Tigers

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on July 25, 2008

Memphis Tigers

Head Coach: Tommy West (41-44 in 7 years at Memphis, 76-79 overall)

Stadium: Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium: (62,380)

2007 Record: 7-6 (6-2 C-USA East)

Postseason: Lost to Florida Atlantic 44-27 in the New Orleans Bowl

Key Returnees on Offense: WRs Duke Calhoun, Carlos Singleton, Steven Black, Maurice Jones, RB T.J. Pitts, TE Brett Russell

Key Returnees on Defense: FS Brandon Patterson, DE Greg Terrell, LBs Josh Weaver and Winston Bowens

The Skinny: In what was one of the most bizarre and inspiring seasons for football in Memphis, starting with the slow start to begin the ’07 season and the tragic death of Taylor Bradford in September and ending with the fourth bowl appearance for the Tigers in five years, this year is looking to be a rebuilding time for Memphis. The Tigers say goodbye to incumbent QB Martin Hankins, who’s moved on to bigger and better things and hello to anyone (including me) filling the void left by Hankins in at QB. While it’s up in the air who’s going to be the quarterback come August 30th when the Tigers open up at Ole Miss, it’s safe to say that the receiving corps will be one of the keys for the offense to click as Duke Calhoun and Steven Black return along with Carlos Singleton and Maurice Jones, who were among the team’s leaders in receiving yards, touchdowns, and receptions. Along with an experienced group of wide receivers, they also welcome back TE Brett Russell for his senior season.

On defense, the Tigers seem to be loaded at safety with former Germantown High standout Brandon Patterson and Tony Bell. Linebackers Josh Weaver and Winston Bowens will also pick up the slack in the defensive unit as well as end Greg Terrell and tackles Clinton McDonald and Freddie Barnett who look to return to their status as one of the best defensive units in Conference USA.

Doc’s Prediction: After ripping this team a new one on this site in late September and early October last year and waking up to jump on the football bandwagon of the Tigers in early November, what momentum that the Tigers carried into their fourth bowl appearance in five years should carry over into this season. Given the fact that their schedule looks favorable, Memphis has winnable games against Rice, UAB, Nicholls State, Arkansas State at home. A showdown with Louisville looms on October 10th and the Tigers open the season in Oxford with Ole Miss to begin the Houston Nutt era, there’s no excuse for the Tigers to not be in contention for the C-USA East crown.

Projected Record: 7-6 (5-3 C-USA East)

2008 Memphis Tigers Schedule:

August 30th-@ Ole Miss

September 6th-Rice

September 13th-@ Marshall

September 20th-Nicholls State

September 27th-Arkansas State

October 2nd-@ UAB

October 10th-Louisville

October 18th-@ East Carolina

October 25th-Southern Mississippi

November 8th-@ Southern Methodist

November 22nd-Central Florida

November 29th-Tulane

Posted in NCAA Football | Tagged: , , | 2 Comments »

Naturally Speaking, It Was Hamilton’s Night

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on July 15, 2008

In my 20 years as a baseball fan, ten of those as your favorite neighborhood sports columnist in Cooper-Young, Whitehaven, and now North Highland Park, I have been witness to some of the most memorable moments in the annual All-Star Home Run Derby.

In 1994, as a scrawny 9 year-old, I watched Frank Thomas knock the cover off the ball at Pittsburgh’s Three Rivers Stadium in the Home Run Derby only to see a month later that the players, unlike me, cared more about having a money line longer than Lil’ Wayne’s dreads than playing the game they loved.

There was the All-Star festivities in 1998 in which Mark McGwire, Ken Griffey, Jr, and my favorite player of all time, Jim Thome, went toe-to-toe at Coors Field in a battle that was to be won by Griffey.

And there was the tape measure shot that I remember seeing Sosa hit back in 2002 at Miller Park in Milwaukee, something that I myself would copy in a sandlot baseball game in Whitehaven a week later when I hit one that went over everything and into the pool in the apartment complex I lived in.

But along with Bobby Abreu’s 2005 HR Derby win and the improbable title that was won by Garrett Anderson in 2003, last night’s Home Run Derby, the first and last to be held in historic Yankee Stadium, was something straight out of a Disney movie.

As many of us know, Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton was drowning in a sea of drugs and alcohol a couple of years ago, this after being drafted by the Tampa Bay Devil Rays as a #1 draft pick in 1998 and on the verge of potentially being one of the best young stars in the game.

After years of abuse, Hamilton straightened himself up with the help of his family and had a decent rookie season with the Cincinnati Reds in 2007, only to be shipped to Texas before this season. Hamilton entered the All-Star break with the fourth most RBIs of any player in baseball history, earning him a trip to Yankee Stadium for his first All-Star Game.

On Monday night, Hamilton, with the help of his former coach, gave the Yankee Stadium faithful one more moment to bask in before it heads into the memory bank of every baseball fan by hitting a record 28 homers, including three 500-foot bombs in right and 13 in a row.

How about that?

In an article that was published by USA TODAY, Hamilton said that one of his dreams was to be in the Home Run Derby at Yankee Stadium and use it as a sounding board to the world about the hole that God brought him out of  despite all the dark nights and lonely roads that he went through to get here and to say on baseball’s biggest stage, hope was never lost.

It’has always been there.

Posted in MLB | Tagged: , , , | 6 Comments »

100 People and Events That Shaped The First Year Of TNB (10-1)

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on July 14, 2008

10-“The SEC Continues Its Dominace” (A National Championship and the first sophomore to win the Heisman in history should make for a great lead-in for the 2008 SEC football season.)

9-“The Greatest Upset” (Normally Applachian State and Michigan isn’t on the top of everyone’s must-see games in college football, but the first televised football game of the Big Ten Network proved to be one for the ages.)

8-“Banner 17” (After 22 years in the wilderness, the Boston Celtics returned to glory by beating the Jesus out of the Lakers. In the process, it gave Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Ray Allen their first NBA title and Shaq more fodder for his freestyles.)

7-“Come After Me, I’m A Man” (While for the most part I didn’t understand originally what was the fuss over an article in what is known as America’s worst newspaper, I began to realize what the problem was after I sobered up from a night of drinking the next morning.)

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6-“Kentucky: It’s More Than Basketball” (In one of the most memorable football games in the history of Kentucky football, the underdog Wildcats defeated the #1 LSU Tigers, therefore exercising the ghost Devery Henderson making a miraculous catch five years before. My best moment from the aftermath was calling Matt to congratulate the University of Kentucky on their historic win.)

5-“Spygate” (No matter how you slice it, the Patriots exposed as cheaters gave Colts fans like myself enough reason to hate the Patriots. Even though they went undefeated in the regular season, they still choked when it mattered.)

4-“Bonds Does It” (Love him or hate him, Barry Bonds became the all-time leading home run king in the early days of the blog. Believe it or not, I’m probably one of the few people that don’t believe he took the juice.)

3-Tim Donaghy (The shame of all NBA referees.)

2-Michael Vick (One of the many cautious stories I tell a few of my friends who want to go into pro sports is the tale of Michael Vick and his “friends”. I wonder how many of them are going to have his back when he gets out.)

1-“Forever Blue and Gray” (38 wins, a third straight C-USA championship, #1 longer than any team in school history, and a cast of characters that will forever be a part of Memphis sports history, is a good reason why this event as well many of the people and events shaped our first year. Enough said.)

My time’s up. I would like to thank each and every one of you for making our blog the success that it’s been for the past year. The best is definitely yet to come.

Thanks again and God Bless,

Doc Holliday, Jr.

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Doc Holliday’s Grand Tour Of C-USA: Southern Miss Golden Eagles

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on July 10, 2008

Southern Miss Golden Eagles

Head Coach: Larry Fedora (1st year)

Stadium: M.M. Roberts Stadium (33,000)

2007 Record: (7-6, 5-3 C-USA East)

Postseason: Lost to Cincinnati 31-21 in the PapaJohn’s.com Bowl

Key Returnees On Offense: TB Damion Fletcher, WRs Gerald Baptiste, Torris Magee, TE Shawn Nelson

Key Returnees On Defense: FS Eddie Hicks, CB C.J. Bailey, LBs Tokumbo Abanikanda, Gerald McRath

The Skinny: The Jeff Bower era ended at the close of the 2007 season after 14 straight winning seasons and 10 bowl appearances in 11 seasons. Replacing Bower is former Oklahoma State assistant Larry Fedora, who was on Mike Gundy’s staff for two seasons and previously at Florida as offensive coordinator under Ron Zook. On offense at quarterback Marteveious Young will be replacing Jeremy Young, who threw for 1,464 yards and 11 touchdowns. While they have inexperience at QB, they will welcome back Damion Fletcher, who ran for 1,586 yards last season and 15 touchdowns along with receivers Gerald Baptiste and Torris Magee. Magee led the team in receptions with 44 and receiving yards with 632. Along with Magee, tight end Shawn Nelson will be another important cog in the offense after a year in which he made 33 catches for 451 yards and led the team in touchdown receptions with 5. With the defense, they are going to have to rely on the leadership of linebackers Gerald McRath and Tokumbo Abanikanda. McRath led the team in tackles with 139 last season and earned Defensive Player of the Year in Conference USA.

Doc’s Prediction: After another bowl appearance by the Golden Eagles, it’s safe to say that once again the Golden Eagles will be back in another bowl for the 11th time in 12 seasons and a contender for the C-USA East crown. But while the schedule presents trips to Auburn in September, Memphis on my birthday, and Central Florida in November, plus home games against Boise State and East Carolina, anything short of a bowl trip will be unexpected in Hattiesburg.

Projected Record: 8-5 (5-3 C-USA East)

2008 Schedule

August 30th-UL Lafeyette

September 6th-@ Auburn

September 13th-@ Arkansas State

September 20th-Marshall

October 4th-UTEP

October 11th-Boise State

October 18th-@ Rice

October 25th-@ Memphis

November 1st-UAB

November 8th-@ Central Florida

November 15th-East Carolina

November 29th-@ Southern Methodist

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100 People And Events That Shaped The First Year Of TNB (20-11)

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on July 4, 2008

20-“Josh Hamilton’s Comeback Story” (Whether you’re a baseball fan or not, you can’t help but love the comeback story that has been former Red and current Ranger Josh Hamilton, who is among AL leaders in RBI, home runs, and batting average.)

19-“The Year of Derrick Rose” (Probably one of the most heralded, wait, the most heralded recruit to ever come to Memphis since Keith Lee way back in 1982.)

18-“The Rockies’ Magical Run” (11 straight wins and a one-game playoff added to Colorado’s first National League pennant in franchise history.)

17-Jennifer Rivers (A long time ago I wrote a column for another website on how most guys never run into girls that root for the same team that they do or even worse, know nothing about sports. Thankfully, Ms. Rivers isn’t one of them girls.)

16-“The Kevin Garnett Trade” (At first I was being realistic about this trade when it happened, but as soon as the Celtics came out the gates and then, we all know what happened in the NBA Finals.)

15-“The Game Of The Century” (As I said before, Dr. Bradley Greer was and is one of the few Vol fans I can actually stand. Apparently after the Tennessee-Memphis game on Feb. 23rd, I had a mind to tear him a new one after they beat us.)

14-“Flushed Down The Drain” (The 1964 Phillies, the 1969 Cubs, the 1995 Angels, the 2003 Cubs, and the 2004 Yankees had nothing on this collapse in New York as the Mets folded up shop in the final weeks of the season and blew a seven-game lead that gave the Phillies its first division title since 1993.)

13-The Walker Family (Normally in most cases, the family that prays together stays together. In this case, the family that reads TNB together stays together.)

12-BD and Ginny (The picture explains everything, except the fact that both of them can strike me out with three pitches in softball and I blame one for my heavy Coke drinking.)

11-“Davidson’s Run” (If this was a movie, Stephon Curry would hit a three-pointer with 10 seconds left and we wouldn’t have to hear about Kansas and Mario (Bleeping) Chalmers.)

My time’s up. RIP George Carlin.

Doc Holliday, Jr.

Posted in General Sports, The Nasty Boys | Tagged: | Comments Off on 100 People And Events That Shaped The First Year Of TNB (20-11)

Doc Holliday’s Grand Tour Of C-USA: East Carolina Pirates

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on June 30, 2008

East Carolina Pirates

Head Coach: Skip Holtz (20-17 at ECU, 54-40 overall)

Stadium: Dowdy-Ficken Stadium (43,000)

2007 Record: (8-5, 6-2 C-USA East)

Postseason: Beat Boise State in the Hawaii Bowl 41-38

Key Returnees On Offense: QBs Patrick Pinkney and Rob Kass, WR Jamar Bryant

Key Returnees On Defense: DE Zack Slate, DE C.J. Wilson, DT Khaif Mitchell, DT Jay Ross, OLB Quentin Cotton, OLB Pierre Bell, CB Leon Best, CB Jerek Hewett, SS Van Eskridge

The Skinny: After a few years in the wilderness, East Carolina made a nice run last year for the C-USA East crown under Skip Holtz, who has done a great job in turning around the fortunes in Greenville in his short time there. With mobile quarterback Patrick Pinkney, who led the team in passing yardage with 1,358 yards and 11 TD passes and 306 yards on the ground in 2007 as well as receiver Jamar Bryant, who led the team in receptions, receiving yards, and touchdowns among receivers, the offense looks to be just as explosive as it was last season. On defense, the Pirates return all four starters up front, including Zack Slate and C.J. Wilson, who both garnered All-CUSA honors in 2007. Wilson returns as the team’s leader in sacks with 7 while Slate looks to be an anchor in one of the best defenses in Conference USA.

Doc’s Prediction: Only a few years ago, a game against East Carolina was a sure bet to be an easy win on the calendar but with the return to glory that Skip Holtz has led this team on in the last two years, look for the Pirates to be in contention again this year for the Conference USA crown.

Projected Record: 10-3 (7-1)

2008 Schedule

August 30th-Virginia Tech (Charlotte, North Carolina)

Sept. 6th-West Virginia

Sept. 13th-@ Tulane

Sept. 20th-@ North Carolina State

Sept. 27th-Houston

Oct. 11th-@ Virginia

Oct. 18th-Memphis

Nov. 2nd-@ Central Florida

Nov. 8th-Marshall

Nov. 15th-@Southern Mississippi

Nov. 22nd-@ UAB

Nov. 28th-UTEP

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100 People And Events That Shaped The First Year Of TNB (30-21)

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on June 26, 2008

30-“Notre Dame’s Lost Season” (After contending for a National Championship for most of 2006 behind the arm of Brady Quinn, the Fighting Irish fell way back to earth as they finished 3-9 and lost to the Naval Academy for the first time in 44 years.)

29-“Shock The World, Kid” (While Crichton’s basketball season ended prematurely in Nashville on March 6th against Trevecca, the softball ladies from North Highland Park made a run to the third day of the tournament in only their second year of varsity competition, where they would lose to Union University 10-1.)

28-“Tigers Bounce Back” (After doing my share of ripping the Memphis Tigers football team, they suddenly righted the ship and bounced back to a 6-2 mark in C-USA play and a 7-6 record overall as well as a berth to the New Orleans Bowl.)

27-Gamecock Sports Forum (One thing we love to do here at TNB is make friends. And apparently with Steven and the gang at GSF, as they’ve been our best friends on the Internet. And I say that in a non-homosexual way.)

26-“Some Big Sisters Have It Better Than Others” (On March 9th, my big sister Renetria turned 25 and on that same day, Drake University won the Missouri Valley Conference and the right to be in the Big Dance for the first time in 38 years.)

25-C. Trent Rosencrans (The former Cincinnati Post beat writer for the Reds, he had a profound impact on the style of writing we present to the masses each day by entertaining Reds and even Cardinal fans like myself.)

24-“The Basketball Sisterhood” (In Feburary, I wrote a column on Crichton’s biggest female basketball fans that got a lot of great feedback around campus. Too bad this was the only picture in which all of the members was in.)

23-Michael “The Great One” Sapp (Another ardent supporter of the website from North Highland Park, he is also one of the few Laker fans I can actually tolerate.)

22-“Whuh’s My Tickets?” (Bruce Pearl complained on the eve of the Tennessee-Memphis game that he couldn’t get any tickets. Obviously trying to get your freak on with Erin Andrews was the only thing that you could get out of playing the Tigers.)

21-“The Scott Rolen Era Ends In St. Louis” (After six seasons, Scott Rolen finally gets his wish and leaves town for Toronto where as I write this, is in last place in the AL East and is looking to hire Q or Sarah as their new manager for 2009.)

My time’s up. RIP George Carlin.

Doc Holliday, Jr.

Posted in General Sports, The Nasty Boys | Tagged: | Comments Off on 100 People And Events That Shaped The First Year Of TNB (30-21)

The Greatest Basketball Program In The South: Kentucky Wildcats

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on June 25, 2008

Kentucky Wildcats

Location: Lexington, Kentucky

Nickname: Wildcats

Reason For Nickname: In 1909 after a football game against the University of Illinois, Commandant Carbusier mentioned that the football team fought like wildcats, giving birth to the nickname.

Colors: Blue and White

Conference: Southeastern

Arena: Rupp Arena (built 1976, capacity 23,000)

Postseason Appearances:

NCAA Appearences: 48 Appearances, 13 Final Fours, 7 National Championships

NIT Appearances: 7 Appearances, 1 Championship

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in NCAA Basketball | Tagged: , | 5 Comments »

100 People And Events That Shaped The First Year Of TNB (40-31)

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on June 23, 2008

40-Jasmine Scudder

39-“The Georgia Gang” (While NASCAR had the Alabama Gang, Crichton’s basketball program had the Georgia Gang that consisted of Michael Sapp, Stanley Brownlee, Slim Wimbush, and Sly Watkins, Jr., all of whom had ties to the Peach State.)

38-“CDR’s Finest Moment” (In the national semifinals, Chris Douglas-Roberts made a statement by dunking on UCLA’s Kevin Love. In the process, Love seeks out the guidance of Dr. Chris Scott for self-esteem issues.)

Brittney Davis, Bradley Greer, Ginny Galloway May 7, 2008

37Bradley Greer (The only Vol fan I can tolerate.)

36-“Florida State Football: Portrait of Dishonesty” (You know its bad when half of your team gets busted for cheating on a final before a bowl game against Kentucky.)

35-“Mama Lisa” (In the early days of my coverage of sports here in North Highland Park, one of my first supporters and second moms around North Highland Park was “Mama Lisa”. Obviously I spent more time getting advice from her on girls to life after college than I did in class.)

34-Matt “The Colonel” Sanders (Another early supporter of the blog in North Highland Park who later pleaded with me to be on my best behavior when I started doing announcing for softball games and said that I should do a reality show concerning my book.)

33-“Did You Guys Show Up?” (Days after Fisk’s women lost bad in a basketball game against Lipscomb, the Fisk men did one better by getting blown out by Crichton in Nashville. When Fisk played in Memphis in January, the team got confused and lost on their way to the gym.)

32-“Whatever Happened To Mental Intensity?” (Towards the end of the basketball season, I decided to face shortstop Aimee Grissom in a game of basketball. Apparently I didn’t have a clue on how to stop her shot.)

31-“What A Way To Fall To Earth” (After making the NCAA Regionals in 2008, the Memphis Tigers baseball team went back to their own losing ways. Don’t worry, I may try and see if I can make a power move over on campus about their baseball program.)

My time’s up. You’ve been a great audience.

Doc Holliday, Jr.

Posted in General Sports, The Nasty Boys | Tagged: | 5 Comments »

Dysfunctional Isn’t The Word For The Mets, Disorganized Is

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on June 19, 2008

Being that I was born in 1984, fifteen years after the Mets’ improbable World Series Championship and two years before their last, I can remember all too well about some of the highs and lows of the Mets in my lifetime.

There was the 1993 season in which the Mets, despite having one of the biggest payrolls in baseball, became the epitome of failed promises and a lousy pitcher in Anthony Young.

The 2006 season in which my Cardinals, despite the fact they had 83 wins, shocked the world by beating a Mets team that could have won the World Series to win their 17th National League Championship.

And then last year’s colossal collapse, a collapse that by no means was the fault of Willie Randolph, and yes, I’m a black guy typing these words.

But while I believed in my heart the Mets should have went on and fired Randolph after the season last year, I thought for a second that the Mets would come out the gate swinging since they picked up Johan Santana in the offseason and that the last few weeks of the 2007 season was nothing more than a memory.

But I, despite the fact that I’m a Cardinals fan and am witnessing a ragtag bunch of guys that came up in the farm system for us have an incredible season, was sold a dream with a side of cole slaw and mashed potatoes when it came to the Mets.

Instead of ruling the National League East, the Mets without question have underachieved this year; underachieved to the point in which Tuesday morning while we were all sleeping, the Mets organization decides to fire Randolph after winning their series opener against the Angels in Anaheim.

In the axing, pitching coach Rick Peterson was also let go after having one of the worst pitching staffs in the National League but not third-base coach Sandy Alomar, Sr., who has done no favors for the team since he’s been on the staff.

The timing of this, if not the action done by the organization, has led me to think the same thing when it comes to the New York Mets.

Disorganization.

How can any organization, be it in the MLB or any bush league, do something like this?

You fly your manager out to the West Coast, who in turns gets you a win, and then in the middle of the night, you fire him.

Firing is part of sports, just like it is part of life.

You have to perform in order to receive a check or else they’re going to find someone else to do your job for you.

But while most places will fire you and have some courtesy behind it, this latest bungle by the Mets is another reason why they, unlike the Cardinals or even the Cubs, will always be the worst team money can buy.

That is, until the Wilpons sell the team or until they see a sea of empty seats at the brand-new Citi Field.

Oops, spoke too far in the future.

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100 People And Events That Shaped The First Year Of TNB (50-41)

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on June 18, 2008

50-“The Miracle on Vance” (Days after a big win against Martin Methodist, Crichton’s Derek Boykin hits a game-winner with less than 2 seconds to go in a home game against Lyon College to continue their longest winning streak of the year.)

49-“Kansas Is A Football School?” (For the first time in my basic lifetime the Jayhawks were playing meaningful games in November. Apparently six months later, I began to resent anything and anyone from the state of Kansas.)

48-“Orange Crushed” (For the first time in the 99-year history of Tennessee basketball, the Volunteers earned a #1 ranking. However, it would be short-lived as Vanderbilt welcomed the Vols to Memorial Gym and quickly humbled them.)

47-“Praying For Doc Hancock” (In 1952, people in Brooklyn prayed for Gil Hodges to break out of his slump in the 1952 World Series. In 2008, people in North Highland Park prayed for me to get a very cute softball player’s number before school let out.)

46-“Crank That Georgia Bulldogs” (In the first quarter of their annual game against Florida, the Georgia Bulldogs decided to celebrate their touchdown by running out on the field and getting a lion’s share of excessive celebration penalties.)

45“Q, The Blue Eyed Princess”

44-“25th Avenue South Blues” (In one of the most lopsided wins for Vanderbilt basketball when, on Feb 12th, Kentucky walked into Memorial Gym and received a woodshed beating at the hands of the Commodores, its worst SEC loss in their long and storied history.)

43-“The Midnight Massacre 2008 Edition” (After beating the Angels on Monday night, the New York Mets decides to fire manager Willie Randolph in the middle of the night. And Wednesday morning I woke up finding out that my cell phone services was suspended until I pay $80.53.)

42-“Jackson, Tennessee Times Two” (Not long after moving to my apartment, the “Basketball Brotherhood decided that they liked the city of Jackson, Tennessee so much that they wanted to play there twice in one week. Too bad they left the city with losses to both Lambuth and Union.)

41-“Digging Big Papi” (On the construction site of the new Yankee Stadium, a Red Sox fan decides to place a curse on the Yankees by digging a David Ortiz jersey in the ground. Sadly, the Yankees figured that one curse was enough to endure.)

My time’s up. You’ve been a great audience. Donate money to the “Help Me Get My Phone Back On” fund so I can get it back on before the Fourth.

Doc Holliday Jr.

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100 People And Events That Shaped The First Year Of TNB (60-51)

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on June 17, 2008

60-“Go And Get Your Money, Bobby P.” (What do you do after inheriting a mess in Atlanta? You run like Bobby Petrino and take a job with the Arkansas Razorbacks as their new head football coach and get called everything but a child of God by your former players in Atlanta.)

59-“Our Mess Is Your Mess And Your Mess Alone” (Recently, New York Mets manager Willie Randolph accused SNY, which broadcasts Met games of being racist in their coverage of him. Well, blowing a seven-game lead wasn’t racist, was it?”)

58-Kenisha Banks (One of North Highland Park’s biggest basketball fans and best female pool players, she along with her cousin, who was number 66 on the list, made my job of writing sports columns in North Highland Park a whole lot easier throughout the school year.)

57-“I’m A Damn Good Coach” (Hours before LSU was to play Tennessee, Les Miles emphasized that he was a damn good coach and was staying put at LSU despite rumors of him jumping ship for Michigan to replace Lloyd Carr. Which he actually did.)

56-“RIP Cincinnati Post” (On the final day of 2007, we reached 100,000 hits while in Cincinnati, a 126-year tradition ended as the Cincinnati Post published its final edition.)

55-“Snowballs In St. Louis” (When the “Basketball Brotherhood” made a stop in St. Louis, the city and the entire area was covered knee deep in snow. Obviously, after shootaround on the campus of Harris-Stowe State University, it was enough snow for us to have a snowfight.)

54-Josh Helton (Todd Helton’s little brother, who was at Trevecca last year breaking hearts here in North Highland Park as one of the best players in the TransSouth Conference. Too bad he had a nutjob for a dad.)

53-“The Cruelest Thing You Could Do” (After being released by the Padres, Jim Edmonds decides to pay a debt back to Satan and my friend Amanda by playing for the Cubs.)

52-Kyle “The Golden Child” O’Neil

51-“Scooop” (While “Scoop” may be one of the best nicknames ever for an athlete, former Crichton softball player Ashley Smith carried that nickname well here in North Highland Park, all the way to a degree and probably enough knowledge of Vol football to become athletic director in Knoxville.)

My time’s up. You’ve been a great audience.

Doc Holliday, Jr.

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100 People And Events That Shaped The First Year Of TNB (70-61)

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on June 12, 2008

As you know, June marks our first anniversary as “The Nasty Boys”, so in honor of that, I’ll be presenting my list of 100 people and events that made our first year enjoyable as your morning laugh after a bad hangover:

70-John Tibbits (On this site, Matt talks a lot about how much he supports the troops and with regard to that, I had to mention my predecessor as student basketball assistant, John Tibbits, who is now serving in the National Guard as I write this and is the only Patriots fan I can tolerate.)

69-“5 Gummi Bears A Day Keeps The Doctor Away” (During the Tigers’ run in the NCAA Tournament, freshman phenom Derrick Rose had a bad stomach ache due to excessive consumption of candy. If only he had saved it for the offseason.)

68-“Another Improbable Bunch Of Cardinals” (After witnessing my beloved Cardinals win the 2006 World Series, almost a year later, the Louisville Cardinals would make their own magical run to the 2007 College World Series, their first in school history by beating Missouri and Oklahoma State.

67-Will “The General” (Ever wonder who “The General” was? Well, like Matt, he’s a proud graduate of the University of Kentucky who makes his late-night weekend comments on here during the football season.) (Matt’s Note: I think The General also makes every attempt to give me hell on a weekly basis.)

66-Brittanee McCaster (On the final day before Fall Break, my friend Brittanee (pictured on the left) shocked the entire campus in North Highland Park by beating me in pool. Not long after that, I decided to start an award for the upset of the week in college football and name it honor of her.)

65-“Don’t Touch My President” (In a year that saw a lot of mayhem on and off the bench in North Highland Park, the last one was out of left field as at the end of the final regular season home game when Freed-Hardeman coach Jason Shelton and Coach Walker got into a brouhahaha. The interesting thing is the notable quote from Coach Walker, “Don’t touch my president!!!!”)

64-“Let A Light Shine On You” (During the Tigers’ second round game against Mississippi State, Joey Dorsey is greeted by a shining beacon of light while shooting a free throw.)

63-“Lloyd’s Last Call” (For all intents and purposes, after I ripped Lloyd Carr in September of last year, I couldn’t help myself but to be proud of the way he went out against the Gators in the Capitol One Bowl.)

62-“Reality Check” (Days after the devastation caused by the tornadoes in Jackson, Tennessee, Crichton’s basketball team made a trip through the city to see the devastation firsthand en route to a game with Mid-Continent.)

61-Zarko Brankovic (That picture explains everything.)

My time’s up. You’ve been a great audience.

Senator Ryne E. “Doc” Hancock

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The 2nd Greatest Basketball Program In The South: Duke Blue Devils

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on June 10, 2008

Duke Blue Devils

Location: Durham, North Carolina

Nickname: Blue Devils

Reason For Nickname: World War I French flying unit, the “Les Diables Bleus”

Colors: Blue and White

Conference: Atlantic Coast Conference

Arena: Cameron Indoor Stadium (built 1940, capacity 9,314)

Postseason Appearances:

NCAA Appearances: 32 Appearances, 14 Final Fours, 3 National Championships

NIT Appearances: 5 Appearances

Read the rest of this entry »

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100 People And Events That Shaped The First Year Of TNB (80-71)

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on June 6, 2008

80-“Dyersburg’s Gift To North Highland Park’s Freak Accident” (Not too long after the freak accident that occurred when yours truly was hit by a pitch in between a softball doubleheader, Dyersburg native and soccer player Bradley Greer would have an accident that to this very day is still a mystery here in North Highland Park.)

79-“We Got That Wood” (Houston Nutt and running back Darren McFadden leads the Razorbacks to an upset win over top-ranked LSU. In the postgame interview, Darren McFadden holds up a two-by-four and proclaims, “We got that wood!!!”)

78-“The Year of Shan Foster” (Lost in the shuffle of Derrick Rose and Chris Lofton, Vanderbilt’s Shan Foster had a season to remember in Nashville. Averaging a shade over 20 points a game, Foster helped the Commodores to the most wins by a Vanderbilt squad in 107 years of basketball. Too bad it went for naught as they were upended by Siena in the first round.)

77-“Hey, You’re That Guy From The Saw Movies” (For all intents and purposes, Union basketball coach Ralph Turner was not the guy that said, “Cherish your life.”)

76-“The Pau Gasol Trade” (A year removed from almost bolting for Chicago, Grizzles forward Pau Gasol traded BBQ for Jack Nicholson. Now the Grizzles are smarting themselves from another lottery screwjob and Gasol is in the Finals.)

75-“Stan The Man, Meet Stan Brownlee” (In 1948, St. Louis Cardinals great Stan Musial won the National League’s MVP award. 60 years later, Stan Brownlee would become Crichton’s all-time leading scorer on March 1st against Freed-Hardeman)

74-“White Suits After Labor Day” (To participate in Louisville’s “White-Out”, Rick Pitino decides to join in the fun by wearing a white suit. But after a shitty start, he decides to break out the navy suit in the second half against UCONN which later on paid off.)

73“Dream Game It Wasn’t” (Given the fact that Lil’ Wayne wasn’t performing at the the Super Bowl, softball player and fellow senator Jasmine Scudder decided to have us play basketball in the gym here in North Highland Park. Of course, the shame of that evening was the upstaging of our team by two hot chicks, one of which humiliated a certain sportswriter not too long after.)

72-“East Meets West” (Eastern Kentucky and Western Kentucky decides after a long time of not playing each other in football to renew their rivalry. Right now a bunch of hicks are celebrating this over a quart of bourbon.)

71-“We Serve To Not Win” (Crichton’s first season of volleyball was deemed to be a bit of struggle, but because of the addition of former Tiger volleyball player Kelsey Watson and Jayne Moonmen, the fortunes of volleyball here in North Highland Park will most likely change for the better.)

My time’s up. You’ve been a great audience.

Peace,

Senator Doc Hancock

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100 People And Events That Shaped The First Year Of TNB (90-81)

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on June 2, 2008

As you know, June marks our first full year of operation as “The Nasty Boys’ Sports Blog”, so in honor of the occasion I will give you guys my list of the 100 people and events that shaped our first year of operation. Here’s 81-90:

90-“Coach O, You Just Got Croomed” (When Coach O took over the Ole Miss football program, I like so many SEC fans around Memphis was excited. But when he led the Rebels to probably some of its worst moments in over seven decades in football, including the season finale against Mississippi State Thanksgiving weekend when Coach O’s coaching genius giftwrapped the game for Mississippi State and led to his firing the very next day.)

89-“The Wild Pitch Heard Around North Highland Park” (In the early days of the 2008 softball season, pitcher Sierra Coltharp by accident threw a pitch that nailed yours truly square in the leg while going to collect lineups for the second game of a doubleheader between Crichton and Williams Baptist. As of this writing, the bruise is gone, but the hilarity isn’t.)

88-“Blue Mountain’s Baptism By Fire” (Little Blue Mountain College, located less than an hour from Memphis, played its first year of varsity men’s basketball and much like the bad Fairview Junior High School teams of the mid-to-late 90’s that I covered as sports editor, they managed to win none of their games and finish the season 0-29.)

87-Amanda The Playboy Bunny (Being a Cubs fan in Southern Illinois takes a lot of courage. Even if you’re hotter than a firecracker.)

86-“Fight Night In Bumpkinham” (As a Tigers fan, I never had too much contempt for UAB, although the night of Feb. 16th, while en route back to Memphis from a trip with the basketball team, the Tigers, who eked out a hard fought win against UAB, the fans in Bumpkinham gave me a reason to show contempt for them when after a controversial ending, the student section there threw all kinds of crap at the Tigers, including a bottle of Thunderbird whiskey, which shows that like Crichton graduate Brandon Privett said, it’s not called an alcoholic until you complete your graduation requirements.)

85-“No Water, No Problem” (During a trip to Waleska, Georgia, the hotel Crichton was staying in had no hot water, so instead of fighting City Hall, Crichton decided to take their lack of hot water out on the court by beating Reinhardt College the following Saturday by 23)

84-“Grace Will Lead You To The Cotton Bowl” (During my Thanksgiving trip to southeast Missouri, I wrote on my friend Grace’s Facebook page asking for grace in Mizzou’s game with Kansas. Ironically, grace did not lead the Missouri Tigers to the National Championship game.)

83-“Miss Candy” (Long before Jessica Simpson and Tony Romo, I spent much of the summer of 2006 being distracted by a girl that I called “Miss Candy”, which is second from left. Strangely, I decided to turn those adventures into some silly book that is out this summer.)

Crichton’s TNB Staff, October 25, 2007

82- “Bob Knight Gets Upstaged In North Highland Park” (As funny as it sounds, I share my birthday with Robert Montgomery Knight, which is a huge task because apparently, our personalities are totally different. On my 23rd birthday, the TNB staff in North Highland Park decided to throw a surprise birthday bash for their boss. Wonder if Knight got the same treatment from Neil Reed.)

81- “Blogging Is A Crime?” (The topic of my first column for TNB surrounded the controversy that surrounded Louisville Courier-Journal’s Brian Bennett liveblogging of the deciding game of the Super Regionals between Louisville and Oklahoma State. Apparently, they decided he would better off by blogging in the middle of the Ohio RIver.)

My time’s up. You’ve been a great audience.

Peace,

Senator Doc Hancock

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100 People And Events That Shaped The First Year Of TNB (100-91)

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on May 28, 2008

As you probably don’t know, next month will mark one year to the day that Matt and the gang started the blog that you are reading now. Although prior to this incarnation the blog was known as “The Sports Guys” until Matt, in all his drunken glory, decided to change the name and well, the rest is history.

From now until the beginning of July, I will give my list of the 100 people and events that helped make this blog what it is today: the fastest growing sports blog in the South.

100-“So Memphis Has A Baseball Team” (In 2007, days before I started writing for this blog, the University of Memphis made it back to the NCAA Baseball Tournament, their first such trip since 1994. While for the most part people in Memphis really don’t give two cents about the the Tiger baseball squad, it was a big accomplishment for the baseball program although they did get swept out of the Nashville Regional by Michigan and Austin Peay.)

99-“Thome Is My Homie” (As a child, I grew up idolizing Jim Thome, who was back then a feared slugger for the Cleveland Indians. Given the fact that he would later move on to the Phillies and now the White Sox, I idolized him for the simple fact that he never let fame go to his head and the fact that he put his nieces and nephews through college, something that is unheard of in sports today. On September 16th, 2007, Thome would hit a walkoff home run against the Angels to become the newest member of the 500-home run club, becoming the first player to ever hit a walkoff for his 500th.)

98-“Why Didn’t Dr. J Think Of This” (As student assistant coach, I’ve seen dunks from my perch while shooting video for the basketball team by Michael Sapp and Sly Watkins. But never before did I see one person dunk over six people in a gym until Marquez Brown did it during the final week of the regular season in North Highland Park. Expect more of his leaping ability to show when the 2008-2009 basketball season begins.)

97-“Wayne, You’re Fired” (While I’m not a Reds fan like Matt, the firing of Wayne Krivsky as general manager of the Cincinnati Reds was bound to happen at some point. This is what happens when your team hasn’t played games that mattered in September since 1999 and you can hardly draw flies to a beautiful ballpark.)

96-Paul Ryburn (Downtown Memphis’ greatest blogger, big Razorbacks fan, and only person that could write a blog while drunk.)

95-“Where’s Your Mascot?” (The Braggin’ Rights game between Illinois and Missouri is one of my family’s most treasured traditions. While Illinois won for the 500th straight time, the play of the game was when Illinois fans like myself chanted “BCS, BCS” while Mizzou fans asked us where Chief Illiniwek was. As bad as Illinois was last year, I myself asked that question a million times. But my hometown team made up for it.)

94-“It’s Not Easy Being Kermit” (After struggling to a 4-9 start, Middle Tennessee basketball coach Kermit Davis decided to kick his Blue Raiders out of their lavish locker room and into a locker room that looks similar to the ones I saw at Lyon College three months ago. Long story short, the Blue Raiders rebounded and made it all the way to the Sun Belt championship game.)

93-UAB’s Dance Team (While we here on this blog do not encourage perverted thoughts, their appearance in the C-USA Tournament gave me a reason to just tolerate the hicks from Birmingham.)

92-“The Marc Iavonari Era Begins” (After dumping Frattello, Memphis decided to go and find someone from a contender and try to make him instill a winning attitude in Memphis. Obviously, what happened with the other tenants in the FedEx Forum was that they came to the realization that no one cared about the Grizzlies except little 5 year-olds.)

91-“The Rise And Fall Of Carolina” (South Carolina’s bad luck continued as they went from being 5th in the BCS to being not mentioned for bowl consideration. Maybe they need to really exercise that curse they got in Columbia.)

I’ll be back with numbers 90-81 of the people and events that shaped this first year of operation on the blog.

Peace,

Senator Doc Hancock

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The 3rd Greatest Basketball Program In The South: North Carolina Tar Heels

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on May 23, 2008

North Carolina Tar Heels

Location: Chapel Hill, North Carolina

Nickname: Tar Heels

Reason For Nickname: North Carolina’s nickname is the “The Tar Heel State”. That should explain everything.

Colors: Carolina Blue and White

Conference: Atlantic Coast Conference

Arena: Dean E. Smith Center (built 1986, capacity 21,750)

Postseason Appearances:

NCAA Appearances: 40 Appearances, 17 Final Fours, four National Championships

NIT Appearances: 5 Appearances, one championship

Read the rest of this entry »

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The 4th Greatest Basketball Program In The South: Georgetown Hoyas

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on May 22, 2008

Georgetown Hoyas

Location: Washington, D.C.

Nickname: Hoyas

Reason For Nickname: It comes from some Latin chant that makes no sense to the causal sports fan.

Colors: Blue and Gray

Conference: Big East

Arena: Verizon Center (built 1998, capacity 20,173)

Postseason Appearances:

NCAA Appearances: 25, including one National Championship and five Final Fours

NIT Appearances: 10 Appearances

Read the rest of this entry »

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The 5th Greatest Basketball Program In The South: Louisville Cardinals

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on May 14, 2008

Louisville Cardinals

Location: Louisville, Kentucky

Nickname: Cardinals

Reason For Nickname: The Cardinal is Kentucky’s official state bird.

Colors: Red, White, and Black

Conference: Big East

Arena: Freedom Hall (built 1956, capacity 18,865)

Postseason Appearances:

NCAA Appearances: 34 Appearances, 8 Final Fours, 2 National Championships

NIT Appearances: 14 Appearances, one Championship

Read the rest of this entry »

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End Of Story.

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on May 13, 2008

Doc’s Note:This is the last installment in a series of columns about sports at Crichton College. Check back in August for more tales from North Highland Park.

The Senator’s Supporters: (l-r) Cassie White, Brittney Davis, SGA Senator-Elect Doc Hancock, Bradley Greer, and Ginny Galloway May 7, 2008

It was almost a year ago when yours truly walked into the athletic duplex in North Highland Park and pitched an idea of building what would later on be the first of many partnerships with this website with the people of North Highland Park.

And it was almost a year ago when I found myself out of a job with the Tennessee Cheesecake Company of Nashville and three months later wound up as a student assistant with Crichton basketball.

In that time span, from August of last year to now, as I sit in front of my computer and write what will be the final column on North Highland Park until we start it up again in August, I have written many funny if not brilliant columns on sports here.

There was the first column on Danstar and high school classmate Michelle Williams, who will be a semester away from graduating and moving on towards her dream of being a professional dancer (no, not that type of dancing, you perverts).

We’ve introduced you all to people like Rufus Tomassetti, who to this day is one of my good friends here in North Highland Park, and Courtnee Steen, who was mentioned in one of my columns about spending time at a soccer game back in late September and one of my supporters as I ran for a seat on the SGA Senate.

There’s been stories about Crichton Flag Football, an idea that was cooked up by soon-to-be graduating Shawn “The Commissioner” Beloate, mascot tryouts and interviewing the random hottie for a story on the eve of the “Battle of the Sexes” before Thanksgiving.

You’ve read about my time on the road with the “Basketball Brotherhood” during the holiday break to places like St. Louis and Waleska, Georgia and why on one of those trips I tried fight the government in Calhoun, Georgia.

I’ve had the honor of introducing the world to people like soccer players Bradley Greer, Kyle O’Neil, Todd Meyer, Courtney Andrews, and Patrick Kabano.

Not to mention softball players Jasmine Scudder, Aimee Grissom, Brittney Davis, and former student director of basketball operations John Tibbits.

A lot of what I said from two months ago about the mission of our blog, as a blog that is non-partisan and non-biased, has rung true as I have provided you readers with funny stories from North Highland Park and I close in on four semesters away from earning my degree in Humanties.

It’s hard to believe that after next week, when the last final exam is taken, when the last round of trash-talking is done on the pool tables, those voices that made it in my columns about North Highland Park will be a fading memory for a couple of months.

Of course, when August rolls around, there will be more hilarious adventures to write about it, more people to introduce you guys to and of course, my own travels with the “Basketball Brotherhood.”

But before I end this column, I would like to thank each and every of you who’ve been supportive of this blog here in North Highland Park.

The best is definitely yet to come.

Thank you.

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The 6th Greatest Basketball Program In The South: Maryland Terrapins

Posted by Ryne E. Hancock on May 7, 2008

Maryland Terrapins

Location: College Park, Maryland

Nickname: Terrapins

Reason For Nickname: In 1932, then-president Curley Byrd suggested that their athletic programs be known as the Terrapins. The name has stuck ever since.

Colors: Officially – red, white, black, and gold

Conference: Atlantic Coast Conference

Arena: Comcast Center (built 2002, capacity 17,950)

Postseason Appearances:

NCAA Appearances: 22 Appearances, two Final Fours, one National Championship

NIT Appearances: 7 Appearances, one Championship

Read the rest of this entry »

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