NFL leading scorer of all time retires

On December 10, 2008 by

The all-time top scorer in the NFL has decided to leave the sport after suffering persistent knee injuries. Morten Andersen, who is forty-eight years of age, has been playing for Atlanta for the last two seasons but has since been out of contract.

Knee problems have plagued him recently, leaving him, in his own words, unable to

BCS match-ups announced – no shocks here

On December 8, 2008 by

The BCS has had its fair share of controversy but when the selections came out on Sunday there wasn’t a surprise to be had. So what are your BCS games for the 2008/2009 Season?

We’ll start off at the Orange Bowl where the Big East Champion Cincinnati will take on the winner out of the ACC Virginia Tech. This is not a surprise as the Orange Bowl had the final pick below the Sugar and Fiesta Bowls and they took at-large teams over the Big East entrant.

Next we’ll go down to the Sugar Bowl where the unbeaten Utah will face the team who were #1 in the country going into the weekend, Alabama. Utah are undefeated and are the BCS buster for this year whereas Alabama have had a great season but the Sugar Bowl will feel like a let down after being so close to playing for all the marbles.

The Fiesta Bowl next and we start the big heavyweight match-ups. Two at-large picks here as Ohio State beats off Boise State for the right to take on Texas in Arizona. Texas in my opinion should be playing for the title but due to some convoluted logic Oklahoma got the nod.

The granddaddy of them all is the Rose Bowl where the Pac-10 Champ USC will play yet again and take on my Nittany Lions of Penn State coming out of the Big Ten. Both teams were very close to going undefeated and playing for the title but close losses at Oregon State and at Iowa put pay to those ambitions. This game will be a lot closer than the experts think.

And on to the BCS National Championship game where we find the SEC Champ Florida and the top dogs in the Big 12 Oklahoma. The Gators are widely regarded as the best team in the nation having just bumped off #1 Alabama and Oklahoma have won out in that quite sensational Big 12 South.

This really would’ve been a great year for the play-off. The Big East and ACC should be struck off from the automatic bids as neither conference is that strong. That would’ve left us with the Champions from the Big 12 (Oklahoma), SEC (Florida), Big Ten (Penn State) and Pac-10 (USC). That leaves us with four at-large spots which would go to Texas and Alabama as no brainers and then you got Utah, Boise State, Texas Tech and Ohio State (in my order of personal preference).

Those Fiesta, Rose and BCS games do look rather tasty though I must say…

2009 London Match-up announced – Pats @ Bucs @ Wembley

On December 2, 2008 by

So after weeks of speculation we have our 2009 London match-up and it is between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the New England Patriots.

I was obviously hoping to see my Jags come over but the chance to watch the great Tom Brady is one that whets the appetite. The Patriots have been the team of the decade and even though they lost their star QB in Game 1 (which may well of screwed up more than one fantasy team) understudy Matt Cassel has done a surprisingly decent job and has kept them in the AFC East and AFC Wildcard race.

The Bucs will be designated the home team and are also in play-off contention this year. The currently have a 9-3 record in the NFC and lead the NFC South and face a huge Monday Night Football game next week when they travel to North Carolina to face the Panthers.

The London game will be the third one played in the regular season and with a 2010 game already agreed in principle, it looks like the game looks set for a long future and maybe opening the door in the long term for a franchise to be based in London, which is starting to become more feasible.

The National Football League dominates the domestic front but they don’t want to rest on their laurels. The London game has been a huge success so far and with the sport growing in stature here in the UK, you can expect more of the same in the future.

I know looking forward to this match-up. Yes -– it could’ve been better but getting the Pats to agree to come to London is a huge coup for NFL UK and these are two of the biggest supported franchises over here.

Does the NFL have a future outside of the States?

Texas shafted by the BCS – won’t play for the Big 12 title.

On December 1, 2008 by

The BCS system is a mess. We all know it and we’ve all known it for years. This year we see that Oklahoma has been declared Big 12 South Champion despite not beating Texas. Can the BCS go through one year without a monumental cock-up?

Some would argue that Oklahoma’s wins over Texas Tech and Oklahoma State at the end of the year shows that they are a better side. However just because those results are fresh in the mind does it really mean they should leapfrog Texas and play Missouri in the Big 12 Title game?

I’ve ended the last two paragraphs with question marks -– how rare.

Anyway -– I don’t. I look at the two losses they had. Texas lost to Texas Tech on a last play miracle catch, spin and run into the end zone. They had beaten Oklahoma (#1), Missouri (#11) and Oklahoma State (#6) on the spin before going into Lubbock and losing on that play. It was a brutal schedule and even losing a game you had to like them the rest of the way.

The win over Oklahoma was on a neutral site whereas Oklahoma’s win over Texas Tech was at home. Texas Tech were mauled by Oklahoma yes but they were always a fraud and this was their first trip to a ranked team all season long. The fact that in one swift loss they have dropped all the way from the BCS Championship Game all the way down to the Cotton Bowl says a lot.

So it was really a straight shoot-out between Texas and Oklahoma for that spot in the Big 12 Title Game and they have already played each other on a neutral site. Surely that should be the ultimate deciding factor? Texas’ 45-35 win over then #1 Oklahoma was very impressive and remember Oklahoma have not beaten a #1 ranked team (Texas Tech were #2 when they played).

The whole BCS has always been a bone for much contention and this year is no different. If you had an eight-team play-off then both Oklahoma and Texas would get in but possibly Florida would not if they lost to Alabama. So you have to work out if winning your BCS conference should lead to an automatic play-off spot (look at the ACC and Big East) and say that if the winner wasn’t ranked in the top 16 then you could give that spot to an at-large.

If this was the case then you would see Penn State, USC, Oklahoma, Texas, Florida, Alabama, Utah and then Ohio State or Boise State is an eight-team play-off. Sounds good doesn’t it?