Daily Archives: January 3, 2010

Mayo Spoils USC Basketball

USC Basketball will have to take a seat for next season as they admitted to the NCAA commission. They came down with their own self imposed ruling on the OJ Mayo investigation. They vacated all their 07-08 wins, and money earned from the Pac-10. Ultimately, the basketball program is banned from post-season play next year, and is stripped of one scholarship for the next two years, and have to make one coach sit out from recruiting, and have 20 less recruiting days per year (110 instead of 130) for the next two years. I’m far from shocked at the ending to this story. The facts seemed pretty stacked against them, and while I hoped it would prove to be false accusations, deep down I knew it wasn’t. That’s why the age eligibility rule that the NBA decided to impose has made the guys ready to get into the NBA too dangerous for the NCAA. Teams are hard pressed into trying to get these players, so if it means giving them a few extra perks, so be it. We all know that Mayo wasn’t there for school purposes, and the one and done type player accomplishes nothing substantial towards a degree. I wonder if the NCAA gave USC some sort of an ultimatum. Either we bust you for Mayo, or we bust you for Bush and McKnight. I’m sure the school would much rather lose hoops for a season over the losing the storied football team, and giving back a National Championship. Lucky for them it’s just the hoops squad!

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The Duke Finally Speaks Out on His Depression

I had so many questions when Justin Duchscherer, the Athletics two-time all-star, decided to shut it down last August for the season. He seemed like he was on the road back to joining the A’s with a quality outing in Sacramento I figured he’d rejoin the team soon. Then out of nowhere he shut it down and cited emotional distress, aka depression. I was pretty curious what actually happened with him, since there were never reports on what it was truly about. The only updates A’s fans got were the ol, he’s making progress, he’s entered a program to treat his condition, etc. The A’s Drumbeat reports that the media phone interview with Duchscherer shed some light on his abrupt leave of absence from the organization. They said he was “paralyzed” when he got off a plane for a rehab start in Sacramento. It was the first time he’d ever felt that way in his life. He was diagnosed by the medical staff, and they found there were some off-field issues that had caused him to feel the way he did. In particular, he had never completely gotten over his divorce from a couple of years ago.

I think I can safely say for all of A’s fans, that we are glad he’s got his head right, because he is one of those guys that we need on this team. Duke has always been a fighter and we know he can make it through whatever is plaguing him. He’s never been a complainer or hard to please. They’ve moved him from a starter, to the bullpen, to long reliever, back to starter and he never complained (not to the media at least). He’s the whatever I can do for the team kind of guy, which was why the leave of absence last year was so strange!

Awe, Duke said he missed working with Kurt...

Awe, Duke said he missed working with Kurt...

It was good to see that we agreed to a new contract for him, and based on the interview this IS our best move we’ve made this off-season. He sounds like the anti-Favre as he wants to help the young guys and mentor them. He want’s to teach them how to pitch well when they don’t have their best stuff, and we know he will. Thanks for keeping it classy Duke, we are rooting for you this year. You are already my #1 feel good story in 2010!


Gilbert is One Hell of a Prankster!

One of my favorite players in the NBA, Gilbert Arenas, has been all over the news because he pulled a gun on his teammate, Jarvis Critteron reportedly over a gambling debt. I dunno if I believe that story, but something obviously went down considering they met with police today. I find it comical that Gilbert would be THAT angry over a gambling debt when he’s in his third year of a $111 million dollar contract! BUT, a ridiculous amount of athlete’s live outside their means, and Gilbert could be no different. Who knows, maybe he lost a few pay checks to Critteron playing cards, and pulled a gun on him to get his money back. Sounds very plausible. I’m thinking he has more common sense than that. Gil hasn’t been nearly as active on his blog as he used to be in the past, and has been far less of a showman this season on the court. I’m sure being on a losing team has something to do with it, but he was more outgoing a couple of years ago to the media. I guess I buy the most recent story that he was pulling a prank on Critteron. Since he spoke to police, they allowed him to clear it up. Honestly, it’s not a big deal to me if he didn’t have them loaded, and used them as a joke. Also, a side thought on DC, I hear it’s pretty ghetto around there, so maybe guys do need some guns around to protect those Bentley’s when they leave the arena. Either way, I love some of the reactions that players around the league had!