Archives for April 2007

2007 NFL Draft, Cleveland Browns Perspective

BrownsNow let’s take a look at the draft from the perspective of an eternally hopeful Cleveland Browns fan. Again, the facts first:

First Round
3(3) Joe Thomas OT WISCONSIN
22(22) Brady Quinn QB NOTRE DAME
Second Round
21(53) Eric Wright CB NEVADA LAS VEGAS
Fifth Round
3(140) Brandon McDonald CB MEMPHIS
Sixth Round
26(200) Melila Purcell DE HAWAII
Seventh Round
3(213) Chase Pittman DE LSU
24(234) Syndric Steptoe RS ARIZONA

As the draft got closer to actually happening, I had come to grips with the fact that the Browns would probably use the 3rd pick to grab Brady Quinn as the QB of the future. In fact, by about 12:30 on Saturday, I was down-right excited about it. With targets like Sergeant Winslow and Braylon “I can’t catch a fourth-down pass” Edwards, I was giddy with the possibilities of a gun slinger like Quinn under center. Couple that with the moves the Browns did before the draft (picking up Steinbach and Lewis, dropping dead weight like Droughns) and I was ready to be proud of my Brownies once again.

Then they took Joe Thomas with the third pick and I was despondent. Not that Thomas won’t be a good addition to a struggling offensive line, he just wasn’t the sexy first round pick. I was so bummed out that I didn’t feel like watching the draft anymore. I went out and started mowing the lawn. I came back in a couple hours later and the Mrs. informs me that the Browns are picking again. That didn’t sound right, but she mentions something about a deal going down with Dallas and that Cleveland would be drafting for a second time, and Quinn was still available. Wow, that was quite a turn of events. Two first round picks, two picks that should turn out to be integral parts of the Browns offense immediately. Color me excited.

I won’t even pretend to know anything about the other picks, but the Browns are looking good for 2007. They gave up a lot to get Quinn, but I don’t think it was too much. When asked about it, Phil Savage made a great point. The Browns needed a QB. They could pick one up this year or wait and use their first round pick next year. They took a chance and they’ll get a one year head start with Quinn. Things are looking up for the Browns.

2007 NFL Draft, Ohio State Perspective

OSU FootballLooking at the NFL Draft from the perspective of an Ohio State fan is always fun to do. It’s exciting to see kids you cheered for to make the jump to the professional level (unless they get drafted by the Steelers or Ravens, GRRR!). So first, the facts. Here’s how the draft shook out for your OSU Buckeyes:

First Round
9(9) Ted Ginn Jr. – Miami
32(32) Anthony Gonzalez – Indianapolis
Third Round
35(98) Quinn Pitcock – Indianapolis
Fourth Round
8(107) Antonio Pittman – New Orleans
Fifth Round
1(138) Jay Richardson – Oakland
32(169) Roy Hall – Indianapolis
37(174) Troy Smith – Baltimore
Sixth Round
24(198) Doug Datish – Atlanta

My thoughts – First off, just like everyone else, I was surprised the Dolphins passed over Quinn for Teddy Ginn. Of course, I can’t hide my satisfaction that, even in the NFL draft, Brady Quinn struggled to beat a Buckeye. A lot of the draft pundits (including MotSaG favorite, Mark May) were calling this pick a huge mistake for a littany of reasons: Ted Ginn isn’t big enough to be a #1 receiver. Ted Ginn doesn’t go over the middle. Ted Ginn was injured in the Championship game, will he ever be 100%? Give me a break. I think they’re missing the point on TGJ value. Of course he doesn’t go over the middle. Why would you send someone that can outrun everyone in the stadium on an 8-yard crossing pattern? Ted Ginn is going to be running wild and dazzling Dolphin fans in no time. If they have a QB that can get the ball in his hands, look out. Remember that move he made in the bowl game against Oklahoma State? Yeah, me too.

It was great to see Gonzo go in the first round as well. Indianapolis seems to have a thing for OSU players, taking Gonzales 32nd over all and picking up Pitcock and Hall in later rounds. Gonzo should be able to ease into the receiver corps in Indy, quietly making clutch catches and will still some how break Michigan fans’ hearts over and over.

Having Pittman fall to the fourth round was shocking to me. By all accounts, he dazzled the scouts with speed and strength and was looking really promising. One of the top 3 RBs by some accounts. Then to fall behind the likes of Tony Hunt and Garret Wolfe doesn’t seem right. Maybe they were worried about his size? Pittman runs the ball hard, he doesn’t just carry it. He runs it. New Orleans got a steal in the fourth round.

Finally, it pains me to see Troy Smith not only fall to the fifth round, but to also get picked up by the despicable Ravens. Steve McNair should be a great mentor for Troy and he’ll quickly regain his pre-championship game form. Of all the Buckeyes in this draft, Troy is the one I’m pulling for the most. I hope he has a stellar NFL career. I just don’t want it to be with the Ravens!

So that’s my take on this year’s draft. Feel free to chime in with your thoughts in the comments.

We’ll take a look at our prognistications for the draft later this week. I’m afraid to look.

MotSaG needs your help!

Blog/site newsAs you’ve probably noticed, things have slowed down here at Men of the Scarlet and Gray. While we’re still posting the occasional item, we really haven’t been blogging much at all. It’s not that there aren’t things going on, we’ve just hit a bit of a lull and lost a little momentum. Things always seem to get in the way.

That being said, we’re more than just Ohio State fans. Speaking for myself, I’m a huge Cleveland fan (which means I hate myself) and I’ve been carefully following the Cavs in the playoffs, the Indians and their current 5-game winning streak and I anxiously await the Browns screwing up yet another draft pick. There’s plenty of sports to blog about, and that’s just speaking for myself. I know the rest of the MotSaG crew are huge sports fans as well, so there’s a hundred different directions we could go with the site. We’re at a bit of a cross-roads.

So that’s where you, the reader, comes in. We here at Men of the Scarlet and Gray need some help. We’ve been discussing the topic of “what now?” for the site. We will be covering some of the NFL draft, but after that, there sure won’t be much to discuss, OSU-wise, for the next few months. So we’d like to know what kind of things you guys like to see. Would you like us to increase the coverage of pro sports in Ohio? What about covering more OSU-related news stories? We pass on a lot of the recruiting and off-the-field happenings because there’s a lot to follow. Would you like to see more open threads? Let us know what you guys would like to see.

We will still endeavor, of course, to bring you original, high-quality, Ohio State content. We’ve built up a loyal readership and we want to make sure you are happy at the same time we increase our readership. We’re all Buckeyes here, so comments, criticism and suggestions are all welcome. You can either leave a comment below or use the Contact form to email us directly.

So long, big guy (UPDATE)

OSU LogoodenJamb.jpg

Confirmed. Oden will declare tomorrow, and will hire an agent. He’s gone, folks.

Mike Conley and Daequan Cook will also enter the draft, but will not hire agents, preserving a way to return to OSU if their projected draft status is not favorable. They have until June 18th to make a final decision.

Image credit & copyright AP (Gerry Broome)



CBJmacLean.jpgSincerely, Doug, thanks for the decade of hard work you put into the organization.

Sincerely, Doug, thanks for taking the reins during the planning phase and giving this town a facility that makes other teams and fans jealous.

Sincerely, Doug, thanks for pouring your life and soul into the franchise.

But sincerely, Doug, don’t let the door hit you on the way out.

Michael @ AOTO has much link goodness.

Spring game this Saturday

OSU FootballThe Troy Smith and Ted(dy) Ginn, Jr. era is behind us, and we’ve entered into the Beanie Wells and [INSERT ANY ONE OF THREE QUARTERBACKS’ NAME HERE] era.

In other words, Tresselball is back. We had a bit of a break from late 2005 to late 2006, when Sweatervest opened up the offense and expected no fewer than 28 points a game.

Stock up on antacids… You cannot resist the Tresselball…

Make no mistake: it’s unlikely those types of game plans will continue. What is more likely is that Tressel will “return to form,” with schemes that rely on smothering defense, an offense that doesn’t screw up, and close games that make fans chew their nails deep into the fourth quarter. It’s very early to make any sort of predictions, but it sure seems like there are a lot of parallels between the 2007 Buckeyes and the 2006 Trojans. Both teams lost the championship game, then lost their marquee offensive talents to the NFL. Both teams relied/will rely on a stingy defense to keep them in the hunt for conference titles. Pete Carroll sometimes wears a sweater vest. And so on. At any rate, the 2006 USC team managed to reload and pick up right where it left off, which is of course exactly what OSU fans are hoping for this season.

Speaking of defense, Lawrence Wilson was selected as the first player in OSU’s internal draft for this weekend’s spring game. Quarterback-wise, all three candidates will split even time this Saturday, as Tressel tries to fill the largest hole in his offense. There’s no indication yet as to which QB will get the job. Personally, I’m hoping it’s Henton, only because his name is so much easier to type than Schoënhoft and Boeckman. Coding that umlaut is a pain in the rear. (Amperstand – e – u – m – l – semicolon, for your future reference.)

But if I’m forced to choose between the two crazy-named kids, I’m going with Schoënhoft. 6’6″, 240 lbs, and can throw the football through a brick wall. Having a Peyton Manning-ish QB for the next three years sounds like a great idea to me.

Of course we’ll have much, much more to say as the summer progresses and the season nears, so stay tuned. In the meantime, your homework assignment is to read Pfef’s awesome analysis of the three quarterbacks:

Boeckman | Schoënhoft | Henton

It only took one inning to beat the Cubs

RedsIn the most recent installment of the “Battle of the Identical Logos,” the Red Stockings were down by five runs in the fifth, then managed to score six times in the sixth to finish Chicago. To add insult to injury, the winning run was walked in. I’m not sure, but I think Pinella actually blew a blood vessel afterwards.

Yes, it’s early in the season, but the Cubs haven’t won at home yet. This does not bode well for a team that was expecting nothing less than dominance and a Series berth.

Meanwhile, Cincinnati seems to be shaking off the cobwebs and getting into a rhythm. Maybe I was alone in this, but I felt that the only thing that kept the Reds from being a lot more dominant last year was a handful of ill-timed injuries. If they can stay healthy, I wonder if they’ll stay at or near the top of the Central for most of the season.

And how about this Hamilton kid? Hitting .308, reaching base 7 of his last 10 attempts, and two HRs in both starts. What do you think: is Hamilton just hype or is he the real thing?

Pathetic Ginn slows in front of scouts

OSU FootballSigh…

When will Big Ten players learn? Running a 4.4 / 40 with an ankle that’s just been removed from a cast is the type of pathetic performance that we’ve all come to expect from a non-SEC player. Scouts were disappointed, but not surprised, at the Cleveland native’s predictable sloth-like jog.

ESPN broadcaster Brent Musberger also wasn’t impressed. “Big Ten 4.4 speed isn’t the same as SEC 4.4 speed,” he said. “Time moves slower down south, something about the corioloiodis force or something like that. So 4.4 down there is like 10.5 up here. Or is it the other way around? Whatever. Besides, Ginn’s not as courageous as Brady Quinn anyway.”

Musberger’s remarks were echoed by Charlie Weis. Weis showed up at the Ginn workout and lobbied scouts for the courageous Brady Quinn. Interrupting a high-jump exercise, Weis called a press conference and reminded the scouts that, even though Quinn is 17-19 against teams not called Stanford, BYU, or [INSERT NAME HERE] Service Academy, he is courageous and therefore an NFL lock.

Quinn was asked for his courageous opinion on the matter, but was unable to extricate himself from one of his brother-in-law’s super-industrial noogies.

When asked about Ted Ginn, Jr.’s workout, former Gator quarterback and future CFL punt-return specialist Chris Leak said, “Yeah, but did he go to a southern school? Did he practice getting tackled on soft grass instead of the frozen tundra of Cleveland? Does he live within a hundred miles of a Disney theme park? I rest my case.”

The general consensus from the scouts was that Ginn should immediately transfer to the I-AA Everglades Community College Mudbugs, then declare for the NFL draft next year. There, he could compete for the starting WR job, thus proving his mettle in the eyes of southern peers.

And the winner is…

tressnacIcon.jpgA big, hearty congratulations to John (aka Buckeye in Texas) whose bracket won the MotSaG first annual Tournament Pick’em Contest.

I’ll have to admit that it’s tough to see a bracket that didn’t even have OSU in the Final Four win it all, but we’re hoping John went with his head and not his heart when he made his picks. John has won a $25 gift certificate to Buckeye Corner’s online store or
(Drop me a note, John, with your choice so I can send your prize along.)

Honorable mention goes to MotSaG’s own sportsMonkey, whose bracket netted him the most correct picks, at 51 out of 63. And as for Mr. Inconsequential, that dubious honor also belongs to fellow MotSaG’er, Sylvester-Yon Rambo, who was almost wrong as often as he was right on his way to the lowest score in the contest.

Thanks to everyone who participated, we hope you had fun. We’re hoping to be able to continue to do stuff like this in the future, so keep an eye out for contests down the road.

NCAA Championship Game — Ohio State vs. Florida

Block O.bmpHere we are, mere hours from yet another OSU vs. UF matchup for all the marbles. Sounds vaguely familiar.

If Terwilliger tackles Conley Jr. after making a sweet reverse layup, I will probably breakdown in tears.

Okay, so let’s not dwell on the past. We’ll just forget how the last game ended up and look forward to being the underdog that no one thinks has a chance.

A few thoughts before the game starts:

If Oden is whistled for a ticky-tack foul in the first three minutes of the game, I’m punching someone in the face. There will be bloodshed. If the refs care about Zeke’s pretty face, they’ll swallow their whistles for a while.

If he survives the first few minutes without a foul, Oden is going to have a huge game. Mark it down.

I’m not opposed to assigning one of our bench players as a “pony-tail puller.” I’m just saying.

How are you guys feeling about the game? Nervous? Excited? Wishing this could be a rematch of the football teams?

#1 Ohio State: 29
#1 Florida: 40

It’s all about the three right now — Florida can’t miss and OSU can’t seem to make. Frustrating as the 11-point deficit is, I’m confident. Oden has been devouring anyone they throw at him. Noah is a joke, Horford can’t stop him and Richard is just a human foul-out. How can Noah sit after three and a half minutes?

I was most worried about Humphrey killing us with his three, but it’s been Brewer. Stop his and his 12 foot arms and I think OSU will be in good shape.

#1 Ohio State: 75
#1 Florida: 84

If there’s any consolation to be found in this loss, it’s that Joakim Noah had absolutely nothing to do with the Gators victory. That is consolation enough for me. I have no malice towards any Gator not numbered 13. They’re a great team and they played flawlessly. Brewer played huge in the first half and Horford played great in the second. They didn’t miss their shots, all the balls bounced their way and they made good on their opportunities. Missing almost 90% of our threes was our back-breaker.

Did you see that last shot of Oden at the end of the game? That was his “I’m coming back next year” face. Just watch. The country got to see what he can do when he’s not being hampered by foul trouble. He is nigh unstoppable. Throw in one perimeter player that was hitting their shots and this game was much closer.

We tip our hats to the Buckeye Basketball team. They took us for a thrill ride all season long, all the way to the top. We’ve enjoyed the great games, the heart-stopping comebacks, everything.

Thanks for the great season, OSU!