BYU and Houston Wearing Patriotic Helmets In Honor of 9/11 Game Thursday

When BYU and Houston meet up this Thursday night on ESPN both will be sporting a patriotic look in honor and remembrance of 9/11. A fitting tribute as a reminder of those impacted and gave their lives 13 years ago and those in the armed forces serving for us across the world.


Utah Ute Players Loving The New White Helmet

It’s a common video that surfaces from college football programs these days. Team meets. Coach unveils a new uniform. Players freak out. It happened with the Utah Utes program as head coach Kyle Whittingham showed off their latest uniform featuring a new white helmet. Like many programs these days the Utes have a variety of uniforms they have shown off in recent years. I will say in my opinion that the white helmet is very sharp and perhaps better thank the red and special black one they’ve worn in the past.

Here’s the video with a variety of angles showing the players getting excited.

Pittsburgh Steelers Wide Receiver Antonio Brown IS the Karate Kid!

Sep 7, 2014; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown (84) runs over Cleveland Browns punter Spencer Lanning (5) during the first half at Heinz Field. Brown was flagged on the play. Mandatory Credit: Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

On so many levels Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown’s karate kick on Cleveland Browns punter Spencer Lanning was hilarious and the play of the day on the first NFL Sunday.

Brown, a proud Central Michigan Chippewa alum (like your’s truly–Fire up Chips!), went to leap over Lanning but sometime in mid-flight determined he wasn’t going to be able to clear the punter. At that point he just decided to go with the Karate Kid Daniel LaRusso crane kick. A tremendous shot that resulted in a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty. Well worth the yellow flag and the fact it happened to a punter who I don’t consider a football player to begin with–even better.

Of course a clever YouTuber out there put together a hilarious Mashup to the Karate Kid. Antonio-san!

This Mortal Kombat version wasn’t bad either.

LeBron James Cramping Is The Way Of Today’s Superstar

LeBron James is the new age superstar. More talent than maybe anybody that has ever played in the NBA or in all of sports for that matter. Who can do things that seem magical. Who can lead his franchise to multiple championships. Yet one who can also cramp up in big moments costing his team an NBA Finals victory.

Some say this just makes him human. How do we know how much pain he was suffering from with those cramps that forced him to leave Thursday night’s 2014 NBA Finals Game 1 loss to the San Antonio Spurs in the fourth quarter? Some justify that heat and humidity is LeBron’s kryptonite since he suffered the same issue in Game 4 of the 2012 Finals versus Oklahoma City.

Considering this has been an issue for James in the past with the modern training and medical methods he has at his disposal today, it’s really hard to believe he couldn’t have conducted the necesary preventative measures to keep this from happening again. And don’t tell me the broken air conditioning inside the Spurs arena is to blame. Seems to me the other players persevered. Hard to think LeBron hasn’t play outdoor hoops in the summer heat before.

Call me old school but I can’t see past superstars letting cramps prevent them from performing in the clutch moments in a World Championship game. I was in Salt Lake City covering the 1998 NBA Finals witnessing first hand Michael Jordan, sick as a dog with food poisoning, leading the Chicago Bulls over the Utah Jazz with the game winning shot to give him his sixth NBA title.

James is not Jordan. He is today’s superstar–unbelievable talent and ability, yet lacking the mental makeup to persevere through physical discomfort for the betterment of his team. And with all that said, he still has a strong chance of hoisting another championship trophy. Well, that’s of course if the Spurs are able to fix their AC.

World Cup Gets More Love On ESPN Than The Stanley Cup Finals

As we get closer and closer to the start of the World Cup, the ESPN PR machine is in full promotion mode. Try to watch the Worldwide Leader for 30 minutes without seeing some sort of soccer story. Of course this is because ESPN has the rights.

Meanwhile the NHL Stanley Cup Finals are under way but good luck seeing any extended coverage of what some believe is the most exciting postseason in sports. Of course ESPN does not own the rights to the NHL.

This leads to the ongoing media debate of the role and power of ESPN. Are they a sports news operation? A promotion machine? Is it both and how should the two be balanced and do they conflict?

In this day and age it all cross pollinates. For most sports media companies, whether it’s television or radio for that matter, there is an obligation of coverage to the sport or team the entity paid to gain their rights. ESPN dished out $100 million for the English-language rights to the 2010 and 2014 World Cup’s. That’s a large sum of cash so like any business ESPN wants to capitalize on their investment. That means features, stories and opinion woven throughout their sports “news” programs with the hopes that it will drive more people to watch the matches. ESPN I’m sure will also argue that there is a higher demand for the World Cup than the NHL.

Whether you agree with that assessment or not ESPN has the power to make that decision due the dominant position they own in the sports media landscape. They have been the pioneers of blurring the lines between sports journalism and promotion in pushing their “sports” agenda. And we as sports fans just have to accept that and clearly we have considering ESPN has yet to have a true viable competitor.

And for those of us that would rather see coverage of the Stanley Cup Finals over the World Cup on ESPN, you’ll be happy to know that Fox Sports spent around $425 million to get the English-speaking rights to the 2018 and 2022 tournaments. Maybe by then ESPN will have regained the rights of the NHL and the coverage tables will be turned.

Hat tip to Ben Criddle on twitter for the picture that pretty much sums up one of the many differences between the two sports.

Steve Spurrier Says Jadeveon Clowney Needs Drivers Training

Nov 23, 2013; Columbia, SC, USA; South Carolina Gamecocks defensive end Jadeveon Clowney (7) sits out the game against the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers with an injury during the second half at Williams-Brice Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Blake-USA TODAY

Javdeveon Clowney has been ticketed for speeding…..again.  That is the second time this month and the moving violation could cost the potential first round draft pick his driver license.

According to The State, Clowney was flagged for illegal driving procedure on Thursday morning by the Columbia South Carolina Police Department.

This time Clowney was going 84 in a 55 MPH zone, a ticket that reportedly cost the Gamecock Defensive End $355 dollars. And that’s not all because of the accumulated points, Clowney faces possible suspension of his driver’s license.

Steve Spurrier, Clowney’s head coach for at least another week, commented on the latest driving episode during a press conference saying “at least he will have enough to pay for it n another week or so.”

Clowney is expected to declare for the NFL draft after the Gamecocks appearance in the Capitol One Bowl.

The old ball coach continued, commenting on the need for his defensive end to have some additional instruction behind the wheel.

Don’t expect Jadeveon Clowney’s latest brush with the police to effect his game day status. Apparently the speeding ticket does not qualify as a violation of team rules as their was no suspension announced.

Sports Mashup doesn’t condone speeding.  However it is somewhat refreshing that he wasn’t ticketed for speeding and not driving under the influence. Clowney may have a need for speed but at least he doesn’t have a need for weed.

Matt Kemp And Khole Kardashian: Is There A Kardashian Curse?

Sep 27, 2013; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers center fielder Matt Kemp (27) scores a run in the sixth inning of the game against the Colorado Rockies at Dodger Stadium. Dodgers won 11-0. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Ever since the Kim Kardashian burst onto the pop culture scene you can’t turn on the news without one of the Kardashian girls making some kind of news and usually for the wrong reasons.

The Kardashians are obviously skilled at prying their way into America’s living rooms but also have a skill for dating professional athletes.

Unfortunately history has shown dating a Kardashian can be detrimental to a pro-athletes career.

The latest rumor involves Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp and Khole Kardashian. It is rumored that Matt Kemp was the reason for Khole Kardashain’s recent martial issues. Those rumors are said to be false and Kemp’s involvement is that of a supportive friend. But in light of the relationship and Kemp coming off his second consecutive sub par season it makes you wonder if Beastmode’s lack of numbers have anything to do with the relationship.

If that is the case, Kemp’s would have been the third career nearly ruined a Kardasian sister.

Reggie Bush famously dated Kim Kardashian in the early years of his NFL career.  The result was five injury riddled season with the New Orleans Saints.  During that span Bush was also the subject of an NCAA investigation that stripped him of his Heisman Trophy and USC of a national championship.

It wasn’t until Reggie Bush went to Miami and away for Kim that he finally got his career back on track.  His two years in Miami as the featured back has led to a career resurgence. His performance for the Dolphins ultimately landed him a free agent contract with the upstart Detroit Lions and spot on top of the NFL leaderboard,

Lamar Odom was known as one of the NBA premiere big men until he met Khole Kardashian.  Over the last couple years of his relationship with  Kardashian, Lamar Odoms career has taken a nose dive.  Odom consistently scored between 880 and 1000 points a season over the last couple of seasons, Odom’s production dropped to 332 points in 2011 and 33o points in 2012. The former Clipper became a free agent after last season and has yet to play a game in the NBA this season.

So now with Matt Kemp’s rumored relationship with Khole Kardashian is the Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder the next professional athlete to fall victim to the Kardashian curse? Kemp probably won’t be the last but it makes you wonder how many careers have to be ruined before pro athletes just stay away from the reality TV stars.

Mormon Missionaries Surprise And Dominate On The Basketball Playground

Two LDS Mormon missionaries recently showed up at a playground to play basketball against some unsuspecting opponents. After purposely missing a few shots they then put on a clinic with a couple huge dunks. Not sure if this is real but if so it’s pretty impressive to say the least!

2013 Utah State Football: Three Fall Camp Storylines

After posting one of their best seasons in program history, the Utah State Aggies enter the 2013 campaign with 18 returning starters but also with a new coach entering a new conference. Here are three fall camp storylines:

1. New head coach: Matt Wells goes from offensive coordinator to replacing the popular Gary Andersen who left for Wisconsin. The positive is that Wells is clearly familiar with the program and the personnel. The concern is adjusting to the pressures on and off the field as being the head coach and living up to filling the shoes of Andersen. In addition how will the players respond to new coordinators and coaches such as Kevin McGiven (OC/QB coach), Luke Wells (Co-OC/TE coach), Todd Orlando (DC) and Mark Weber (Assistant head coach/OL coach). All indications point that the transition is going smoothly. A win over Utah in the opener would do wonders to convince the fan base all will be well.

2. Finding playmakers: As long as quarterback Chuckie Keeton stays healthy big plays shouldn’t be a problem. But definitely some receivers need to emerge after losing top producers Matt Austin and Chuck Jacobs along with tight end Kellen Barlett. In addition can Joe Hill continue the run of Aggie 1,000 yard rushers following in the footsteps of Robert Turbin and Kerwynn Williams. With all five offensive linemen remaining intact from a year ago chances of that happening are good.

3. The secondary: Anytime you lose a cornerback that was taken in the third round of the NFL draft replacing that player is difficult. In addition to Willie Davis departing, the Aggies also must fill the shoes of free safety McKade Brady. Having corner Nevin Lawson back will definitely help matters.

Western Michigan Football Coaches Walk On Fire And Glass

I have to admit I like the fact that college football coaches and programs are embracing social media creating their own content, videos etc. However the Western Michigan football coaches may have taken things a tad too far. They created a video in which coaches were walking on glass and hot coals. As a Central Michigan graduate, with Western as our arch rival, it doesn’t surprise me. They aren’t the brightest bulbs in Kalamazoo. Another reason why we proud Chippewas call them “Wastern Michigan!”