Sunday, September 18, 2016

The Extinction of Virtue... (You, Me and the Two Minute Memory)

As we approach completion of the second decade in Millennium, we're figuring how to embrace the good, bad, and ugly surrounding globalization and pandemic addiction to social media. Millennials in Western Civilization have hi jacked technology and spreading blasphemic rhetoric with reckless abandon. Even worse, the X generation and Baby Boomers are climbing on board attempting to resurrect their own fountain of youth, and relevance.

No where is the latter so valid than in our Sports analyst world. Both amateur and professional critics are guilty of acquiring a two-minute memory. Reporting has moved in to an existential realm. Although it's never healthy to stay in the past, or worry about the future, we should at least learn and observe from past and present successes and failures.

The virtue of patience, has been moved on to the endangered values list.

The current story of 1st round 1st NFL pick of 2016 Jared Goff of the St. Louis Rams is one headline validating the coming extinction of patience. Goff has been designated 3rd string by head Coach Jeff Fisher, citing need for growth to succeed as a NFL quarterback. Not very long ago, Aaron Rodgers was 1st Round Pick for Green Bay in 2005. Rodgers sat watching Brett Favre for three years before starting. Andrew Luck was the 1st Round pick for Indianapolis Colts in 2012, and sat behind Peyton Manning. Calling Jared Goff a 'bust' because his head coach chooses to groom him and slowly bring up to speed is just ignorant. If you would like to know valid examples of what a 'bust' looks like? Look up the following 1st round quarterback picks: Jamarcus Russell, Ryan Leaf, Johnny Manziel, Matt Leinart, Jake Locker, Vince Young, Rex Grossman, Byron Leftwich, Joey Harrington to name just a few drafted in last 15 years. Jared Goff comes out of the same fiery offense of the Cal Bears, where Aaron Rodgers played. Knowing the present and past success of Cal and Stanford products, I am sure Goff will be valid, once he receives the opportunity to run a NFL offense.

Another set of values out the window would be honesty and humility. Just hop over to a bevy of story lines coming out of NFL. The most prevalent headline, and hitting close to home, in the Bay Area, is owner Mark Davis relentless pursuit to relocate the Oakland Raiders. Oakland Raiders fans have to be absolute up in arms about recent development of Las Vegas rewarding a bid for NFL (at the Raiders' owner qualifying inquiry) to build a stadium financing a 750 million dollar project. We've heard for years back and forth conversation and debate of both the City of Oakland as well as the Oakland Raiders pointing blame and fingers at one another about lack of support, and funding to keep Raiders franchise in Oakland. By 2020, the City of Oakland lies at risk of being barren, losing all three professional franchises. The Golden State Warriors moving back to San Francisco in 2017; the Oakland Raiders may be leaving to live La Vida Loca in Las Vegas as soon as 2018 (if approved by NFL ownership); and the Athletics may finally win a heated dispute to relocate to the South Bay, San Jose. The Oakland Coliseum is a vintage historic landmark of what was once the norm, of a duel use stadium, housing baseball and football teams. Somewhere in between the lines of closed door City meetings, and NFL back room pow wows, Oakland has been left behind in purgatory. Unfortunately, the losers become the fans. What will happen to loyalty when once again, the team you proudly cheer, up roots, and moves far away?!

Last but not least, are diversity and benevolence. The meaning of Patriotism has officially been put on the water board. The question of patriot, blackness, and respect have been placed on the forefront of conversation weekly since San Francisco back up quarterback, Colin Kaepernick was noticed sitting during the National Anthem, in a preseason game. Before Colin had any opportunity to explain in actions, and positions, the social media sites lit him up! It was as if he received quite the virtual media lynching of his actions. I am guilty myself of rashly reacting without knowing any background of the situation. Many have questioned Kaepernicks' motive, reasoning, and method. We all had input. Majority of our input quite false, and juvenile. I have to give Kaepernick credit of starting a discussion and opening up debate on an issue that is controversial and no one wants to validate. We may not agree with his method of protesting racial injustice in the United States. I keep hearing that the term 'injustice' must be further defined. In every one of Kaepernick's press discussions, he's been quite clear in defining injustice. One example would be a black college student found guilty of stolen lap tops. He was sentenced to three years in jail, no option for parole, early release; then there's the Stanford white swimmer convicted of rape (found having sex with a passed out woman in public) sentenced to six months, and then released three months later for good behavior!!! That's an injustice example Mr. Kaepernick and many other black athletes are protesting.

That's just a dust bunny on the tip of examples around the country. Many are upset that he is disrespecting military, and military service. Many military members have come to the football players' defense, stating the whole reason we defend the flag, and the constitution of the United States, is the right for citizens to rise up ( or sit, take a knee) and protest when there are 'injustices' happening marring the whole reason of our land of supposed opportunity. I, myself may not agree with his method of protest, but I agree his right to protest, and hope to see action behind the words. I am aware there has been significant financial promises to programs combating and working to reverse and improve poverty and violence stricken communities; but there has to be action. Professional athletes are in high profile positions, and it's a great platform to impress and advocate change. I personally do not reflect it as a distraction, or 'not doing your job' reaction. If anything, it has improved, opening door to communication between players, as well as everyone surrounding professional sports.

The beauty of sports and competition is its a complex arena. It involves camaraderie, discipline, team work, and a choice to do the right thing. Create positive choices, and change any deviant culture. The game's always evolving. Its best to embrace change, and improve on imperfection.

If you haven't paid attention, please watch some clips:

Monday, May 30, 2016

PRP ... Not to PRP...

Please enjoy recent published Post on my employer's website!

So proud coordinating this piece!

Enjoy the insight and information!

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

April 7, 2016...

As the universe gifts us rare celestial moments in our life time of Haley's comet passing, or a full lunar eclipse, there are rare dates in sports lore where sporting events align that may create a euphoric brain frenzy! A day where you enter sports fan heaven.

If you are a Bay area sports fan, that sporting eclipse took place this last week. The boys of Summer are back in town, and the defending NBA Champion Golden State Warriors are attempting to make history, challenging The Chicago Bulls regular Season win record of 72 wins done back in 1995-96 Season. On Thursday, April 7, the Bay Area sporting schedule aligned perfectly for the fan whom had deep pockets, and the day to participate in an elite double header.

The San Francisco Giants fittingly kicked off their home opener facing prime rival, The Los Angeles Dodgers. Festivities begin as early as 5 AM at the Public House at the Corner of 3rd and King, the Willie Mays corner of AT&T Park. There are pre-game traditions Ive had the pleasure to take part in through out the years. Two of my top 3 involve Ferries. The Larkspur Giants Ferry, and the Oakland Game Ferry have to be two of the best pre-game rides in town! The third has to be Giants' Flagship opening show pre-game kick off hosted by KNBR morning ensemble, featuring 'Murph and Mac'. I am sure every group of fans have their annual traditions migrating upon At&T Park. It's an even year! Anticipation, and expectations run thick through every member of the Giants family (Players and fans, alike).

Opening home game versus the Dodgers ended up absolutely epic! The Giants came from behind to tie it up in late innings, and won with a walk off home run belted by home grown stud, Golden Glove short stop 'Don't Call Me Stamos!” Brandon Crawford. Cue Tony Bennett!

Even with the Giants opener running extra innings, it left ample time for an ultimate fan to listen enjoy the tinkling ballad of 'Leaving your heart in San Francisco' in your seat at AT&T, then happily sauntering back to Bart to catch an East Bound train over to #Roaracle Arena to capture history of Golden State Warriors to ascend as the only second team in NBA history to reach 70 wins in an 82 game Season against none other than Western Conference nemesis, San Antonio Spurs. There's nothing sweeter than attaining historic benchmarks versus the team that has quietly dominated 'Winning' since the beginning of the Millennium.

April 7th, 2016 was an incredible day... It was stunning... April 7th, 2016 should be framed in your mind as a perfect day in The Bay...

Whenever you see the opportunity aligning, enjoy the splendor and be witness to history in progress!

Monday, March 21, 2016

2nd Chances...

The Glory of 'March Madness' has not disappointed, drenching national head lines on every media level in the last week. As we dig out of Winter days gone by in February, the sniffing of Spring rolls in as the third month commences. Before North America ushers in Vernal Equinox, Americans young, old, educated, idle fans, avid fans, bandwagon fans, in college, alumni, and any alternative come together to participate in the greatest tournament created on US soil,  the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball National Championship. A tournament comprised of the top 64 teams aspiring to be champion. A tournament where you win, you move on... Lose, you go home.  This literally is USA's version of "World Cup". We all have our regional allegiances, based on where we grew up, where we live, or where we went to school. No other tournament on American soil pulls off such frenzy and intrigue from 'Sea to shining Sea'... Or in this case, East Coast to West Coast.

Tournament Bracket Challenges have literally gone viral in the last decade. NCAA Division I Men's and Women's Basketball tournaments have taken off!  We all pay attention to the men's side, filling out brackets, all thinking with our Regional wisdom, "We know the the upsets and 'Sure Shots!' "... Au Contraire my friends- we know Jack!!! Even ESPN's College Basketball expert, Jay Bilas is imperfect! Here we are... After kicking off the tournament on none other than St. Patrick's Day, 2 rounds in the books, and 99% of posted bracket picks are wiped out by long shot busters rising for glory that only Elle Woods, or tuned in 6th degrees of separation psychics would have picked in the initial round of play! In 2013, when Harvard stunned the field with a round 1 win, there were only 374 brackets that picked all 32 games correct out of 3.3 million brackets! That's 0.012 percent! I am sure the wins by Yale, Hawaii, Middle Tennessee, and Stephen F Austin created similar results this year.

The entertaining thought of 'Picking a winning Bracket' livens such a dormant time during American sports. The NFL just finished its championship at beginning of February, and Major League Baseball opening day isn't for another month. Thus, the collegiate national basketball tournament by default, has drawn interest from the idlest of sports fans.

ESPN has come to realize, majority of those aspiring for perfection become irrelevant within 24 hours of tournament play... Luckily, ESPN has wisely created a contest for all of us know-it-alls to  pursue 'Glory' at perfection once again... I, myself, and many other compadres whole heartedly embrace and support their empathy in creating the 'Second Chance' Bracket!

You may think women are mostly ambivalent about sports... In actuality,  there are more of us out there as competitive, and attentive, that either you overlooked, or just seem to invalidate as irrelevant... Well, my fellow sports brethren, a life long friend just created a group of such women and we are having a hoot! We look forward to entering the 2nd chance Bracket with ALL of you, and hope we persevere in our research, and hindsight! Watch out boys! 'Theee'  March Madness Hot Chicks are in it to win it!