August 17, 2006
Tom Brady:
"Scarlet B?" Linked (sort of) to BALCO, as Bonds trainer Greg Anderson mentions Brady among athletes he has talked to (only once). Tracking ...
 
 
 
The Lead Item
Two Words For You:
SNAKES.  ALIVE.

This summer's biggest story in pop culture? Friday's release of "Snakes on a Plane."

Wow, I need a hook to connect "Snakes" (aka "SOaP") with sports.

Well, how did "SOaP" become a cult phenomenon? Mainly, because of the title:

Fanboys fell instantly in love with its obvious premise. See the title; understand the movie.

Genius! Expect this to be the next hot Hollywood trend.

So, to honor "SOaP" mania, I'm going to convert the title of notable sports movies into their obvious, "Snakes on a Plane" style equivalent.

10 Recent Releases:
Local Ne'er-Do-Well Makes NFL
("Invincible")
Hollywood Elites Mock NASCAR
("Talladega Nights")
White Coach, Black Players
("Glory Road")
Black Coach, Racial Tensions
("Remember the Titans")
Red Sox Fans are not Funny
("Fever Pitch")
Spoiler: Female Boxer Dies
("Million Dollar Baby")
We Used to Care About Hockey?
("Miracle")
Texas Football Fans are Crazy
("Friday Night Lights")
Jockey on a Horse
("Seabiscuit")
"Snakes" Star Coaches Hoops
("Coach Carter")

And 10 Classic Sports Movies: Hicks Win State Hoops Title
("Hoosiers")
Italian Stereotype Hits Meat
("Rocky")
Smarmy Iowan Sees Dead People
("Field of Dreams")
Little Leaguers Suppress ADD
("Bad News Bears")
Fans in Cleveland Can Dream
("Major League")
Robert Redford Saves Baseball
("The Natural")
Jerko Sports Agent Makes Good
("Jerry Maguire")
Costner's Career Hits Apex
("Bull Durham")
You [expletive] My Wife?
("Raging Bull")
Stinks to be Dying NFL Player
("Brian's Song")
Doody in the Pool
("Caddyshack")

Got any other suggestions?
I'll run the best tomorrow.

Send your nominees here.

PGA Championship
Longest major course ever. I love a good superlative, and Medinah's unprecedented 7,561 yards is obviously a huge X factor.

I love how the distance has provoked media scrutiny about the possibility of a performance-enhancement problem in the PGA.

On its face, it seems crazy. Steroids might make a guy lactate, but they certainly won't give him man-boobs like a bunch of these guys have.

That said, I don't think a sport exists where cheating doesn't happen. And golf is so solitarily cutthroat that I can't believe everyone resists temptation.

Claiming that steroids would hurt golfers more than help is as naive as that old argument that steroids would hurt MLB pitchers more than help.

Meanwhile, Tiger vs. Phil will dominate the next two days. Plus: Do you take Tiger or The Field?

MLB Hit List
Even among Red Sox die-hards, I'm sure there was little faith that David Wells would be the hero in salvaging a win vs. Detroit.

Did the Nats put Alfonso Soriano on waivers Tuesday? Who cares? All it does is remind everyone how Nats GM Jim Bowden blew the trade deadline.

The surprising X factor in the AL wild-card race? The Royals, who have bookended a lost weekend with 5 of 6 wins over both Soxes.

(The latest a 2nd straight win over Chicago, which puts the White Sox one tenuous game ahead of the winning Twins for the wild card.)

CHECK OUT THE QUICKIE EVERY WEEKDAY MORNING!
WHO'S GOT THE MOMENTUM ...
Antawn Jamison: One-time long shot makes U.S. hoop roster
Bronson Arroyo: Snaps 10-game winless streak, beats Cards
Yankees: Break ground on spiffy new $1 billion stadium
... AND WHO'S GOT NO MO'
Roger Federer: North American 55-match win streak ends
Greg Anderson: Back to pokey if he doesn't testify today?
Jim Edmonds: Cards OF has "post-concussion syndrome"
 
Stat of the Day: The A's tied an MLB record by beating a division opponent for the 15th straight time. They are the Mariners' daddy.

The Yankees broke ground on their new $1 billion stadium. It needs a nickname, like "The House That Ruth Built." A few nominees:

• "House That Boss Built"
• "House That Billions Built"
• "House That Bud Built"
• "House That Jeter Built"
"House That A-Rod Built"

Angels-Rangers Brawl
Bench-clearing brawls might make for sensational MLB highlights, but it's time for MLB to ban players who clear the bench.

The rule would be simple, modeled after the NBA: If you leave the dugout (or bullpen) to join the fight, you are suspended.

I don't argue for this because I'm some prude; it's just that I think baseball's macho culture of preening honor is outdated.

It's actually MORE dramatic without the rest of the team: Let the pitcher defend himself from the batter, mano a mano.

NFL Camping
T.O. is back! Did you really think Terrell Owens wasn't going to return in time for his prime-time spotlight on Monday Night next week?

Does Koren Robinson's DWI make you feel sad for him or angry at him? It is hard to generate any sympathy for a multiple-time offender.

Big Ben tweaked that right thumb that has bothered him before. Didn't hurt him in '05, obviously, but a detail worth filing away.

Browns center curse? First, free agent LeCharles Bentley is lost for the season with a camp-opening knee injury.

Now, replacement Alonzo Ephraim is suspended the first 4 games of the season for violating the NFL's substance-abuse policy. Mind-boggling.

An even dozen: That's my over/under on the number of times Matt Leinart will feel a Pats lineman's paw in his face during the very long quarter he'll reportedly play against them this weekend.

No punishment for T-Rac: You will undoubtedly sleep easier knowing that the NFL declined to punish the Titans or their mascot for driving into Saints backup QB Adrian McPherson with a golf cart this past weekend.

NFL Preseason
Hope you like reserves!

Chiefs at Giants: After what happened to Clinton Portis, how many carries do you think Larry Johnson and Tiki Barber get combined? I'll set the over/under at single digits.

Eagles at Ravens: Two teams for whom the health of the starting QBs essentially determines the team's playoff fate. We'll see each for, oh, a series. Maybe two.

USA Hoops Cuts
This is very simple: If Shane Battier didn't play for Coach K at Duke, there is no way he would have made this USA team.

(Bruce Bowen was cut: So forget all that talk about Bowen locking down Ginobili when the U.S. has to get past Argentina at the World Championship.)

Quotable Artest
Stretching the definition of "community service":

"Someone started trouble and I ended it. I would always encourage you to protect yourself, but in certain situations, if you can avoid them, avoid them."

Ron-Ron sets another impeccable example for the kids.

NFL vs. CFB
Wednesday's debate got great reactions.

In Wednesday's Quickie poll, the results were nearly dead-even: 50.3 percent pick the NFL, 49.6 pick CFB. Every vote counts!

One major theme emerged: Personal preference between CFB vs. NFL seems to correlate with where you grew up:

Someone from, say, Buffalo will probably prefer the NFL; someone from Gainesville will love college football more.

(I think it also increases your interest in CFB if you went to a college where football was a great experience.)

One point to re-emphasize: By far, the fans' biggest complaint about the NFL game (compared to CFB) was the OT rules.

I can't stress this enough: Even the BCS's worst day wouldn't compare to the debacle of a Super Bowl champ being decided by a pre-OT coin flip.

CFB '06: Power 16
Love ESPN.com's '06 Power 16, particularly the pick of Ohio State and Texas as 1-2, setting up their game in Austin on Sept. 9 as a de facto play-in game for (at least) one spot in the national championship.

But I have to question the panel's pick of Oklahoma at No. 12. Seriously? That high? This smacks of a "rep" pick -- how preseason polls unfairly boost "name" teams and punish the underrated.

Oklahoma is out of my Top 25, as far as I'm concerned, until the Sooners at least prove they're Rhett Bomar-free bona fides with a first on-field W.

Quickie Closure
The final edition (ever) of the Daily Quickie will run on 8/31. Leading up, I'll highlight some superlatives.

Today: Biggest U-Turn

June 16, 2004: "With this [NBA] title, Larry Brown vaults Phil Jackson as "Best Coach of This Generation," even though Phil still has him 9-1 on rings."

Ugh. Since then, I have:

• Hammered Brown's intractable, player-alienating, media-manipulating philosophy of basketball as "The Right Wrong Way";

• Blamed Brown directly for the Athens Olympic debacle;

• And predicted the Knicks will win more games for Isiah, simply out of spite.

Only 10 days left!
Click here to vent.

(Oh, and if you couldn't get the link to yesterday's first-ever Quickie to work, try this version.)

Lonny Baxter:
Understatement of the Year: "Hopefully this [Baxter's arrest on Wednesday] doesn't become a life-altering event," his lawyer said. (Umm, too late.)
 
 
Today on ESPN.com
Quickie Live
Page 2 Index
CFB Power 16
 
U.S. News '07 Ranking
Princeton
Eh, I'd send my kid there
 
Harvard
Mrs. Quickie says, "2!?"
 
Yale
It's a tyranny of Ivies
 
Cal Tech, MIT and
Stanford (tie)
Tree drags Stanford down?
 
Penn (really No. 7)
Really? This high? Wow.
 

What a sad story about the suicide of Floyd Landis' father-in-law, apparently suffering from depression unrelated to Landis' scandal.

You can criticize Stephon Marbury for a lot of things, but the release today of his well-intentioned $14.98 basketball sneaker is not one of them.

Watching Dennis Leary rip Mel Gibson via Kevin Youkilis on Tuesday's Red Sox broadcast is hilarity at its best. It's why they invented YouTube.

Turns out Emmitt Smith's partner on "Dancing With The Stars" is Cheryl Burke, who won last year with Drew Lachey. Emmitt "has great rhythm," Burke said.

A new detail that adds wild backstory to WSOP champ Jamie Gold: Apparently, the ex-agent formerly represented unlikely porn star Ron Jeremy. (Defamer.com)

Hockey mystery stud Evgeny Malkin has resigned from his Russian team, setting up a move to the Penguins and teaming up with Sidney Crosby.

Did everyone see the leak of the 2007 U.S. News college rankings? Almost as important as the preseason Power 16. See Big 5 for the Top 5.



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