Minnesota

The Bulls have been out of the NBA action since April, but off-season chatter is booming. If you’ve blocked out the Bulls since they missed the playoffs, you may be a bit out of the loop, but let me catch you up on the details consuming Chicago fans.

First, the Minnesota Timberwolves named ex-Bulls Head Coach Tom Thibodeau the president of operations as well as the head coach of their organization in April. Basically, the T-wolves gave Thibs the reigns and said “make us a contender pretty please.” Thibodeau got pushed out of the Bulls organization after the 2015 season mostly because he didn’t see eye-to-eye with the front office – specifically Gar Forman and John Paxson. Despite his winning  the Coach of the Year award in 2011 and tying the record for most wins (62) for a rookie coach, Gar and Paxson figured Thibs was the problem with the Bulls. Then the Bulls hired pretty-boy Fred Hoiberg, had the rockiest season I can remember and missed the playoffs entirely. Just loads and loads of disappointment.

Fast forward to May, as news broke that Joakim Noah was over the Chicago Bulls organization and will be exploring his options as an unrestricted free agent this off-season. WHAT! Literally my heart shattered into a million pieces. Jo-No has been a staple in Chicago since being drafted by the Bulls in 2007. He’s given his heart and soul to the team, been viewed as a leader and then Hoiberg struts in and takes away his starting lineup spot. Now, it’s understandable that Hoiberg was trying to jazz things up and find a rhythm for his new team, but pushing his veteran out of the picture probably wasn’t his best move. However, Noah didn’t specifically bring up losing his starting spot as a reason for his desire to move on from the Bulls. Instead, it was all focused on the front office. A fellow player said Noah has no trust in the front office moving the team in the right direction and that players don’t trust Gar Forman. Rumor has it there’s an assistant coach who is also a little tattle tale and tells Gar everything that happens with the team. That same player also indicated that former head coach Thibs acted as a buffer between the front office and the team, which is probably why he got pushed out.

Jo-No is coming off his worst statistical season of his career, only appearing in 29 games, averaging only 4.3 points and shooting under 40 percent from the floor. Let’s not forget about the season ending shoulder injury he suffered and has been rehabilitating. Although the demand for Noah may not be what it once had been, he’s still a presence to be reckoned with. Also any team looking for a veteran leader with sick rebounding abilities would be interested in Noah. He’s 31 and could easily revive his career if he can stay healthy.

This week, rumor has it that Thibodeau is interested in shopping for Joakim Noah during free agency. Honestly, I’m not surprised. Noah had his absolute best seasons under coach Thibodeau and won the Defensive Player of the Year award in 2014 with Thibs by his side. Why wouldn’t Joakim want to reunite with his favorite head coach?

So where does that leave the Bulls? A hot damn mess. Pau Gasol is also a free agent come the off-season so technically the Bulls could be without both veteran centers. Rumors are surfacing that the Bulls should trade Jimmy Butler and completely rebuild. Looks like we may be stuck with Derrick Rose and his two surgically repaired knees. Ummm, go T-Wolves? Thank goodness it’s baseball season.

 

0 comments
110724111.aXkf7oRB.ChicagoBulls2

After five seasons, case zero NBA championships and a reputation of running starting players into the ground, viagra the Chicago Bulls dismissed head coach Tom Thibodeau after last season. I know, doctor I know. He may have won Coach of the Year in 2013, but being a stubborn arse doesn’t get you any where in life. In June, Chicago hired Fred Hoiberg to take over at head coach. If you’re like myself and took a quick break from NBA basketball after the Michael Jordan era, you may be thinking “who is this Fred Hoiberg guy?” Well, let me give you the low down.

First, lets give this handsome fella a quick search on google image. I mean, thank you for the eye candy Bulls. Compared to Thibodeau (who I swear looked like Danny DeVito’s Penguin villain in Batman), Hoiberg is literally a male model.

More importantly, let us learn a bit about why this man is qualified to coach an NBA basketball team. Hoiberg was most recently the head coach for Iowa State and basically the mayor/savior of Ames, Iowa. He grew up in Ames, played basketball in Ames and is notably the most popular player in Iowa State basketball history. After college Hoiberg was drafted as a Shooting Guard by the Indiana Pacers in 1995 and after four years was picked up by the Chicago Bulls as a free agent. Unfortunately, Hoiberg was a Bull during the “re-building years” post Jordan and the team never really did too much, but his reputation was that of a good shooter and great teammate. He also built relationships with John Paxson (VP of Basketball Operations) and Gar Forman (General Manager) during his tenure in Chicago. After four years in our windy city, Hoiberg took his three-point sharp shooting talents to the Minnesota Timberwolves. His career was cut short due to a heart condition, but Hoiberg joined the Timberwolves front office.

In 2010 Hoiberg became the head coach for Iowa State, despite having zero coaching experience.  In less than two years, Hoiberg took a terrible team (we’re talking 15-17) and transformed them into a competitor. Iowa State has gone 115-56 in his five years coaching the Cyclones and made it to the NCAA tournament the last four years.

It can be difficult to make the transition from college to NBA as a head coach, but Hoiberg is known for running an NBA-style offense at the college level. His offensive creativity is something many Thibodeau haters are very excited about. After some difficult and definitely frigid relationships with Tom Thibodeau and Vinny Del Negro, the Bulls are absolutely looking for a coach they can get along with. We know Hoiberg already has a great working relationship with the front office, now we just need him to have something special with the players.

If nothing else, Hoiberg sure is easy on the eyes. So that’s a definite plus. I look forward to seeing what this guy has up his sleeve for us Bulls fans this season.

0 comments
Bears vs. Vikings: Enemy & Eye Candy

The Blackhawks have given us many things to be happy about and thankful for this season, mind but unfortunately, the same can’t be said for our other two teams currently representing our beautiful city.

Derrick Rose is out for the remainder of the Bulls’ season and our injury-plagued Bears got stomped by the mediocre Rams last week with their playoff hopes dwindling faster than our 40-degree days. Can the Bears lift our spirits this week with a W in Minneapolis over the bottom-dwelling 2-8-1 Minnesota Vikings? I sure hope so! Our city needs a moral lift in the sports department and a Bears win could do just the trick.

The Bears sit at 6-5 and are one game behind the 7-5 division-leading Lions who hold the tie-breaker advantage after winning both match-ups this season. After last week’s loss to the Rams, the Bears playoff chances look slim, but with five games remaining and tight races throughout the NFC, anything can happen, which is why it is critical for the Bears to pull out a win on Sunday over Adrian Peterson and the Vikings.

Get to know the Vikings’ Enemy & Eye Candy before kickoff.

VIKINGS ENEMY 

Adrian Peterson

When Chicago faced the Vikings in week two of the NFL season, I picked Adrian Peterson as the enemy and although the running back has gone through a lot personally since then, he still remains my choice for the Bears’ enemy in tomorrow’s important NFC North matchup. Despite not having an MVP season like last year, Peterson has been consistently productive for Minnesota and with the Bears defense struggling like it has been, I don’t doubt that he’ll be putting up some big numbers at the Metrodome.

  • In his 2012 comeback season, Peterson ran for 2,097 yards, averaging 6 yards per carry, and scored 12 touchdowns. So far this season, Peterson has tallied 10 TDs, fumbled the ball three times and is just three yards shy of his sixth season with 1,000 or more rushing yards, which he will definitely rack up on Sunday (maybe even 20x over). Number 28 didn’t participate in practice Wednesday or Thursday of this past week due to a groin injury, but he is probable for Sunday’s game. It has been reported that Minnesota is likely just giving their star player some rest.
  • In my Fantasy Football league, Peterson is projected to garner 22 points and with the Bears’ rush defense being as weak as it is, I foresee him reaching or even exceeding that projection. With the Bears struggling against the run all season, look for AP to take advantage of this Bears weakness with the majority of snaps going to Peterson. It is certainly going to be up to QB Josh McCown and the rest of the Bears offense to get this road victory.
  • Although I do think Peterson will put on a show against the Bears D, I don’t see them coming out on top. Sitting in last place in the division, the Vikings have struggled to string together wins, despite coming close multiple times. To make it even worse, they came out with a tie against the Packers last week…a tie, really?

VIKINGS EYE CANDY

Andrew Sendejo

I mentioned Andrew Sendejo as a notable hottie in my first Vikings post of the season and this week, it is his time to shine. The safety played for Rice University in Houston, Texas and since then, has had a spot on the roster of the Cowboys, Jets and Sacramento Mountain Lions. Sendejo has tallied 60 total tackles as a Minnesota Viking this season but honestly, I’d rather him just remain shirtless on the sideline. Check out the photo below for my reason why.

The Vikings are beatable and the Bears D is beaten up, so this weekend’s game promises to be an exciting one. Chicago will need to close the gaps to contain AP, clean up their game, as to not let penalties be the deciding factor in Minneapolis, and for goodness sake they need to better their pass protection because so far, that concept has been hard to grasp for them.
Sunday’s game kicks off at noon in Minneapolis, let’s see if the Bears can get the win and keep up with Detroit for the top spot in the NFC North.
0 comments

This is how I feel about this game.

Full disclosure: I’ve been dreading this week since I looked over the schedule in August. It’s the week that I knew I would have to pump myself up for. Lift some heavy weights to get those endorphins going. Focus on constant hydration courtesy of Pelligrino. Watch profanity-laden motivational speeches from fictional football coaches in awesome 90’s movies. Why did I need to to all of this? Because I’m stuck with one game this week. And no it’s not Michigan or Nebraska. Northwestern. Or, cialis God even Michigan State (whose been on the fall off for a minute now). Nope, viagra sale it’s those other two teams. And they play…wait for it…each other.  And that brings us to the game of the week.

Iowa at Minnesota, drugstore 2:30pm on ABC (regional) and ESPN2

Minnesota’s mascot is dumb. Photo credit: Bleacher Report

The facts: The Hawkeyes are 3-1 coming into week five, with big wins against Western Michigan, Missouri State and eeking one out against rival Iowa State. Their one loss came in week one against Northern Illinois.

Here’s the deal. Iowa needs to win this game because it gets much, much harder from here. Their next four games: Michigan State, at No. 4 Ohio State, No. 17 Northwestern and No. 23 Wisconsin. It is very possible that they could enter their week 12 matchup against No. 17 Michigan with seven losses. Seven. Ouch.

On the other side, Minnesota has racked up wins against a bunch of no names. They beat up on UNLV, New Mexico State, Western Illinois and San Jose State. A win for the Gophers at home would give them the confidence they need to walk into the Big House next weekend against a struggling yet still ranked No. 18 Michigan team.

Why you should care: Well Minnesota is ranked 118th overall in passing yards and Iowa is ranked 91st. So start getting pumped about the rushing game Divas. Iowa’s rushing attack is the one-two punch of junior fullback Mark Weisman (who is from Buffalo Grove,

Minnesota running back Roderick Williams, Jr. (35). Photo credit: Draft Report

by the way) and junior running back Damon Bullock. Weisman 95 carries for 468 yards and three touchdowns, while Bullock has 203 yards on 50 receptions over the first four games. If those numbers sound average to you, then you’re being generous.

Minnesota, though, ranked 13th in the nation in rushing yards thanks to junior running back David Cobb and sophomore running back Roderick Williams Jr. Cobb and Williams are combined for 8 touchdowns on the season, with Cobb contributing 332 yards on the ground on 53 carries. They both average over six yards per carries.

If you just want to know who the quarterbacks are, they’ll be the ones handing the ball off to the guys mentioned above. Their names are Jake Rudock (Iowa) and Phillip Nelson (Minnesota). They won’t be throwing anything because between them they have six touchdowns on the year. That’s eight games. Peyton Manning had more touchdowns than that in the NFL season opener.

My take: I have to go to wedding this weekend. But even if my Saturday afternoon plan wasn’t getting wasted face at the reception, I wouldn’t watch this atrocity of a game. I got so bored writing about the running backs that my own eyes glazed over. But back to the game, Minnesota will win because Iowa is awful. But really we’ve all lost because this game sucks. Watch something else.

0 comments
Category: NCAA
Adrian Peterson and Christian Ponder

VIKINGS ENEMY 

As we head into to week two of the NFL regular season, viagra sale I have some good news and some bad news for Bears fans. Let’s start with the bad: this week’s enemy is without a doubt, running back Adrian Peterson of the Minnesota Vikings. Why? Well, unless you’ve been living under a rock for a while, or you just refuse to acknowledge his presence (totally understandable but equally illogical) then you know why he’ll be a threat at Soldier Field on Sunday.

  • In his 2012 comeback season, Peterson ran for 2,097 yards, averaging 6 yards per carry, and scored 12 touchdowns.  It would be inaccurate to say that his return from an ACL injury was anything less than remarkable.
  • Coming into this Fantasy Football season, Peterson held the top draft spot across the board. Whoever got the first pick of their draft was expected to take AP, no questions asked. I was one of those people. Peterson got me 28 points last week and I was definitely a happy camper.
  • The running back’s game one performance demonstrated why he held the number one overall Fantasy draft pick. Peterson rushed for 93 yards and tallied three touchdowns in Minnesota’s 34-24 loss at Detroit last Sunday.

Adrian Peterson

I understand if you’re feeling a little nervous after all that but hold on, I promised some good news, so here we go.

  • Let’s start with a little Bears-Vikings history. At Soldier Field, the Bears have beat the Vikings in their last five meetings. Chicago has also forced 31 turnovers in their last 12 home games against Minnesota, with 14 of those coming in those last five w’s. If that trend can continue, it’ll be much more likely for the Bears to pull out a win on Sunday. And it’s not looking good for the Vikings, in their season opener against Detroit the offense turned the ball over four times. Turnovers mean Minnesota’s back on D and Peterson, their lean, mean rushing-machine, is sidelined.
  • Aside from Peterson’s touchdown runs last Sunday, he was held to 11 yards on 16 carries by the Lions. That is awesome news. Also, in Chicago’s first game against the Bengals, the D only gave up 63 yards on the ground. If they can keep that up and control Peterson, seemingly Minnesotas only weapon, a 2-0 start to 2013 could be the result.
  • Bears Head Coach Mark Trestman said that fans can expect game plans changing week to week based on opponents and you better believe that he and Defensive Coordinator Mel Tucker, are planning for Peterson to come out and perform in a big way.

VIKINGS EYE CANDY

This week’s eye candy goes to Vikings QB Christian Ponder. I hate to do this to you ladies, since he is already married to the beautiful Samantha Steele Ponder, an ESPN broadcaster, but I just couldn’t pass up the 6’2″, 230 lb. quarterback.

Christian and Sam Ponder

That’s not to say there wasn’t some stiff competition. Harrison Smith and Andrew Sendejo, both Vikings safeties, caught my eye as well (see below). Ponder looks good but he didn’t do so hot in last week’s game. He went 18-for-28 for 236 yards but threw three interceptions. Game 2 between the Bears and Vikings kicks off at noon on Sunday, tune in to see if he’ll do that again this week (let’s hope he does)!

Andrew Sendejo

Harrison Smith

0 comments

The gang’s all here this weekend, seek with no one on a bye. All six of the games are divisional match ups, but only two of them are significant in post-season play: Michigan and Nebraska. Northwestern effectively bowed out of contention with that hard-to-watch collapse in Ann Arbor last Saturday. The Wildcat’s will head back up to Michigan this weekend to play the other Big Ten team – Michigan State – and try to redeem themselves.

Both Michigan and Nebraska hold BCS rankings (21st and 14th respectively), and both teams are celebrating Senior Day against squads that are inferior talent wise. Nebraska holds the tie-breaker with a head-to-head win over the Wolverines, and their remaining schedule is home for Minnesota and at Iowa (two winnable games). Michigan is hoping Nebraska will slip up one of these weekends so they’ll represent the Legends in the Big Ten title game in December, but the schedule isn’t in their favor. Next week, they head to Columbus to play No. 6 Ohio State. But first, they’ve got to take care of business at home against Iowa.

Iowa at No. 21 Michigan 11:00am on ESPN and streaming on WatchESPN.com

Joe Gaglione – the bright spot on Iowa’s defense. Photo credit: Bleacher Report

Props to Michigan. They were underdogs against Northwestern, fell behind early, fought back and beat the Wildcats in overtime. And they did that without quarterback Denard Robinson, who might miss his Senior Day due to a nagging nerve injury in his right (throwing) elbow. But back up Devin Gardner is a capable replacement, but he’s had his struggles – namely, those passes he completed to the other team in each of the previous two games.

Iowa is in the midst of a four-game losing streak. Luckily, they get to head to the Big House and play a ranked Wolverine squad on their Senior Day. And those seniors being honored this Saturday? They’ve never beat Iowa. This bodes well. The Hawkeyes are on the road to their worst season in 12 years, and the cries for head coach Kirk Ferentz’ job have reached all the way to Washington D.C.

Michigan wide receiver Devin Gardner. Photo credit: AnnArbor.com

Who to watch: Iowa defensive lineman Joe Gaglione is tied for fourth in the conference in sacks with five and he has nine tackles for a loss. He should have a field day with Michigan’s running back who are struggling to be productive behind a unfabulous offensive line. For Michigan, keep an eye out for wide receiver Roy Roundtree who had five receptions for 139 yards against Northwestern. Iowa’s pass defense is last in the conference allowing opponents to complete 62 percent of their passes. Roundtree is going to have a big game.

Minnesota at No. 14 Nebraska 2:30pm on Big Ten Network

The only conference wins Minnesota has are against Purdue (who isn’t very good) and Illinois (who is gawd awful). I don’t want to say that Minnesota is going to lose because anything is possible, especially since Nebraska sleep-walks through the first three quarters of most of their games. But the probably of the Gophers rolling into Lincoln on 14th-ranked Nebraska’s Senior Day and not getting blow-out style mauled? Whatever comes right before zero.

Minnesota running back Donnell Kirkwood (20). Photo credit: Road Runner

Who to watch: Running back Rex Burkhead has been sidelined with an ankle injury that just won’t go away, but he doesn’t want to miss his last home game. Sophomore running back Ameer Abdullah is impressing everyone with four straight 100-yard games.  But Nebraska’s defense cannot give up big plays, especially from Minnesota running back Donnell Kirkwood who is approaching 1,000 yards for the season. The entire offense runs through this guy, so Nebraska’s D knows exactly what it needs to do.

Around the division

Northwestern at Michigan State 11:00am on ESPN2 and streaming on WatchESPN.com

This is what happens when you sleepwalk through the fourth quarter, Northwestern. You get posterized. Tisk.

There is absolutely no excuse for what happened last weekend; Northwestern beat Michigan, but somehow left Ann Arbor with loss. The Wildcats were like that hot girl at the club. She looks good for the majority of the night. But when 2am rolls around, she’s puking everywhere and missing a shoe. Northwestern plays like champions for three quarters, building convincing double-digit leads against solid teams. Then the fourth quarter happens, and they fall apart.

Northwestern. Friends don’t let friends walk barefoot through the Taco Bell drive thru with smudged mascara and their bra showing at 3am. You left the house hot, now all you have to do is come back home with dignity. Don’t be that girl this weekend; beat the Spartans.

0 comments
back to top