Tag Archives: e-mail

Should the NCAA Tourney be Changed?

Today we got in a solid e-mail chain argument on this Wall Street Journal article. It basically states, that we should expand the March Madness to 96 teams instead of the normal 64, and that would be a “no brainer”. It also states that they should have a first round bye for the teams in the top 32, and have the rest duke it out to play with the top 32 adding an extra round for all the teams that MIGHT have made the Tourney…

Cali4Dre: So what happens to the NIT?  This really dilutes that tourney to barely any decent teams, do they still hold the NIT any more or just cancel it in this scenario?  I think this dilutes the talent in the NCAA Tourney and extends an already really long event…

Chappy81: I agree, it’s waay too many teams. I could care less about the teams ranked 65-96… They should’ve won more games if they wanted to guarantee themselves a spot!

Dyslexic: Fair enough…although his additional field of teams that would get on the left were all pretty decent teams….wasn’t like USF was in there

Chappy81: I think March Madness is one of the best events in sports already. I don’t think they need to change for the sake of change!

Cali4Dre: I agree about the NCAA Basketball, it’s already pretty all-encompassing and very fair, even including a 65th team.  I think the NCAA should spend WAYYY more time figuring out how to make Football more like the good thing they have set up in basketball.

Dyslexic: Of course it’s fair already….the entire idea of expanding would be to gather more money for the schools and the NCAA itself, if there wasn’t money being left on the table they wouldn’t consider this.

Cali4Dre: In the article, I was turned off from the second paragraph where the guy states that expanding the NCAA to 96 teams “is the biggest no-brainer in sports”… really????  Why not expand it to 128 teams and add a full round???  Why not 196 and add a round and a half if there’s so much left on the table?  Why? Because it dilutes the tourney and brings in the rifr-raff instead of making it a tournament for the ELITE teams in College Basketball… Conference Champions, Top Ranked teams, and those teams that scheduled tough non-conference schedules and one some of those games.

This guy is crazy to think this is more pressing than changing the BCS system to a playoff.

Dylsexic: what money would they be leaving on the table?

I mean, I just work at LoopNet, so I can’t give you a detailed breakdown….But one example I can think of is the contract the NCAA signs with ESPN or CBS coming up will be highly leveraged on the additional games and higher advertising prices either company could charge for advertising during those games. Ticket sales will bring in more money because the NIT are home games for teams and they pocket more money… Heck, many of the first games of the regional NIT games aren’t even televised, if those games are wrapped into the NCAA tourney and they are all on TV, and national TV at that, it would certainly bring in a boat load more money.

Cali4Dre: But like I mentioned, they earned the right to play with the nation’s very best schools by winning their conference, as humble as it may be.  They didn’t finish in the middle of the pack in their conference and happen to schedule a bunch of non-conference powder-puffs because they could afford to buy the games and bring in slaughter house meat to roll over on their floor.  That’s all, I’ve exhausted my argument.

Dyslecix: Exactly…so they can add to the field, let those smaller teams who’ve earned their way in, and still be a part of it…still make as much money…and at the same time roll in more of those major conference schools that were middle of the pack (and have big names), all the while the NCAA still rakes in the dough, and more of it.

I think this will be highlighted even more this year after the Pac-10 only get’s in two schools….I’m sure the NCAA would love it if they could still find ways to bring a UCLA, Arizona, Oregon, despite the fact the programs are down for a year or two.

I’m just playing the other side of the coin. Either way it goes I wouldn’t objective…I’d like to say this isn’t the biggest “no brainer” in sports to the average sports fan. He must have been catering to the rich WSJ readers!

Cali4Dre: One last comment… it seems as though you might be describing the Major Conference Championship Tourneys.  That’s where, on National TV, the major conference teams that were middle of the road, and didn’t play the best non-conference schedules can either add to their win total to get back in the argument for a bid or win the auto-bid themselves.  If they don’t do either, why invite them to the Big Dance at all??  Just cause they are in a Major Conference?  Major Conferences already get like half their teams (for instance the Big East usually has like 10 of their 14 teams), you want teams from the bottom half as well?

Dylsexic: I played college basketball I get what the Major Conference Championships are all about 🙂

Again, I don’t know how to boil my point down any more. The NCAA would love to bring in as many Major Conference Schools as they can (I assume with at least a winning records) and leverage the hell out of them in every aspect to make more money. Florida, UCLA, Oregon, Arizona, LSU, Indiana, Michigan: You guys had a down year, worry not! They want excuses to bring schools like the ones I used as examples and there big names into the fold each and every year they might be down, and leverage the hell out of expanded fields for money,  ticket sales and what not.

Harvard, Alcon St, Weber St, San Diego, USF, Rider, Fordham you guys one your super small conference tourney? Awesome, that’s great, you can still come and join the big dance…were just going to make sure we can make as much money from all of the bigger schools that would have missed out.

Cali4Dre: Making the tourney 128 teams would be better numbers-wise than 96, or seeding teams from 1-24 makes sense as well… it’s just lame to have half a round imho.  And absorbing the entire NIT pool isn’t a bad idea, but that’s the whole point, to have a champion of the riff-raff, the “other guys”.  I think the mid-majors and smaller basketball schools in big conferences (football schools per se) like the idea of still being able to win a championship against their equals.  Why scale back the hardware to just one trophy nationally?

I don’t know man, it’s just messing with tradition jacks everything up.  Look what the BCS did, JUST BECAUSE THERE WAS MONEY ON THE TABLE.  The ordinary fan, and student, is the first to lose out when money enters the conversation.


Instant Replay in the MLB? Doin Work’s E-mail Thread Explores

The ol umpire huddle seems to take longer than just looking at the instant replay!

The ol umpire huddle seems to take longer than just looking at the instant replay!

Chappy81: How bad have the calls been during the ALCS?!? It’s looking like the MLB should be figuring out a way to put in instant replay…

Dyslecix: Possibly the worst calls in a prolonged series of games we’ve ever seen? It’s going to force MLB to accept instant reply of some sense even if they don’t want it to be an option.

Cali4dre: It’s about time really. Every other sport has it in some sense, and human error can be avoided in this situation to right the wrongs.  MLB has always been slow to adapt…

Chappy81: Yeah, the saddest part is ALL those calls were so easy to make. I don’t understand why they wouldn’t want to have replay for easy stuff like safe and out. Maybe the umpires are scared that it’s the beginning of the MLB not needing them!

Dyslecix: It’s odd that the one sport that doesn’t have a clock is concerned with time…Deep, I know!

One of two blown calls by Tim Mccllellan in ALCS game 4

One of two blown calls at third base by Tim Mcclellan in ALCS game 4.

Chappy81: Very deep, never thought of it that way, but very true!

MCeezy: First off, I completely sympathize with any sentiment against slowing the game down, but all these blown calls are making it more necessary.  I vaguely remember the amazing Joe Buck saying that most umpires are actually FOR it.  They don’t want to be the ones deciding the game.  If they could just figure out a way to keep it speedy, it would work.  Problem is, the NFL and NBA have yet to figure it out, so maybe it’s easier said than done.

Dyslecix: In all seriousness though. Why are they worried about the flow of the game? The time it would take to review to many calls? REALLY? It takes two minutes, you have an additional ump up in the stands who reviews questionable calls and notifies the guys down below the play should be reviewed…If football can do it, there is no reason why baseball can’t be even more effective with it.

Chappy81: Yup, it seems like they could easily put some simple system in that wouldn’t slow the game down too much. Fans would much rather have the calls right and know that we had the right team win fairly. I’d be all for having an ump in the booth telling them when they blew a call. I can’t remember which umpire it was, but he said that if they did have instant replay he’d be man enough to acknowledge that he made the wrong call.

Cali4dre: That’s the problem to begin with.  Pitcher’s are already on an internal clock with umpires.  Umpires are allowed to call a balk/ball for taking to long to pitch.  But like you said, if it’s all theory on game-time interruption anyways, who gives a shit.

I think the umpires are more worried about their own jobs and relevance to the game.  I’m pretty sure at this point they could effectively automate balls and strikes with a computer/K-Zone, which would be fair to both teams and take out an umpire’s personal strike zone bias.  It’s too easy to get blocked out of view on a close play anywhere except maybe first, and even then it might be tough on tag plays coming down the line.  Change the rules, allow instant replay to take a larger role!

MCeezy: I DEFINITELY disagree with using it to call balls and strikes.  Differing strike zones for different umpires are a part of the game.  THAT would get annoying for sure.

Dyslecix: I’m not sure it would be baseball anymore to be honest.

Both ALCS managers have had to argue waaay too many calls!

Both ALCS managers have had to argue waaay too many calls!

Cali4dre: Negatory, I’m tired of seeing one umpire call hi strikes while the next day an umpire calls low strikes.  Or one adds six inches to either side of the plate and another thinks the black is a ball.  What happens??  Managers get their panties in a bunch and start yelling from the dugout, and this gets worse and worse in a game until someone is ejected.  I don’t like that shit.  I like the old, and current, definition of a strike which is anything over the black on the plate from the knees to the letters.  NOT ONE umpire uses that, they all use their own interpretation.  If that happened in the NBA or NFL, loosely interpreting rules in the book, which I know happens and we all hate it, there would be refs getting suspended or fired.

Dyslecix: I would equate baseball’s strike zone to how basketball refs call a tight or loose game with fouls. Each crew is different and you have to adjust as the game unfolds. Having a mandiated K zone that is monitored by a TV camera and called automatically is way to robotic in my mind.

MCeezy: I echo Tony’s sentiments exactly.  We all know NBA refs have different fuse lengths when it comes to assessing Technical fouls.  It’s all a part of the game.

Chappy81: Well put! I’m against taking the human element completely out. How would you suggest that they relay the strike and ball calls Dre?

Hmmm, maybe it could work for balls and strikes...

Hmmm, maybe it could work for balls and strikes...

Cali4dre: Easy, it would appear on an umps count holder (you know, the thing he keeps that batter’s count on, don’t know what this is called.  I lights up green for strike, red for ball or something.  The umpire would still stand there, but he wouldn’t call balls and strikes, just plays at the plate and everything else.  Currently balls and strikes are an interpretation that can lead to arguments.  Take Tennis for example, they use a machine on challenges, and that works fine because it’s definitive.  Why not do that with every pitch since it can be done immediately and correctly??

Chappy81: In the end wouldn’t that slow down play to a crawl though? I mean, if you the umpire has to wait 10-20 seconds for his thingy to tell him if it’s a ball or strike wouldn’t that add another half hour to already pretty long games!?! MAYBE they could set up some kind of challenge like Tennis has, where you get one or two an inning, but I can’t see them doing it for every pitch…

Dyslecix: You’ll never add the word “challenge” to the vocab of baseball and instant replay…..Just based on the fact alone baseball won’t copy the NFL. If anything it will be an isolated umpire decision of some kind, the head coach will have no discretion on using it.

Cali4dre: I was using the Tennis machine as an example of a machine making the decision, it just happens it’s used there as a “challenge”.  Oh, and “Challenge” is already in Baseball, how do you think they get to the point where they need to review a play???  One manager goes out on the field and says “hey, that wasn’t a home run”.  That’s a challenge. Actually, you’re right, “Challenge” may never make it into the Rule Book because Appeal is already there.  Same thing only it sounds better!

Rule 9.02(a) Comment: Players leaving their position in the field or on base, or managers or coaches leaving the bench or coaches box, to argue on BALLS AND STRIKES will not be permitted. They should be warned if they start for the plate to protest the call. If they continue, they will be ejected from the game.

(b) If there is reasonable doubt that any umpire’s decision may be in conflict with the rules, the manager may appeal the decision and ask that a correct ruling be made. Such appeal shall be made only to the umpire who made the protested decision.

(c) If a decision is appealed, the umpire making the decision may ask another umpire for information before making a final decision. No umpire shall criticize, seek to reverse or interfere with another umpire’s decision unless asked to do so by the umpire making it.

Dyslecix: Were all watching this on TV …there is mandated strike zone….the pitch comes in and its a strike….we now know that IT’S A STRIKE cause its mandated…however the Ump is still staring at his little thingy to be told whether it was a strike or not…….and it takes two, three, four, five seconds for the ump to then signal the strike call….we the audience on tv already knew it was a strike to begin with, which is redundant.

Okay….appeal is much better…if mangers start throwing red flags out from the dugout I’m going to be sick!

Cali4dre: NO, it would be immediate.  The pitch hits the glove, the light goes on and the umpire calls it.  No waiting, not sure what century you guys live in…


Doin Work E-mail debate: Who Else is on the list of 100+ that used PED’s?

Manny Ramierez & David Ortiz

In the wake of the leaked positive test results of Manny Ramierez and David Ortiz back in 2003, there has been unrest on what exactly should happen, and what should happen with the rest of the names on the list. We debated all morning in an e-mail chain that you can decide for yourself what the MLB should do.

Brian: It’s so lame they don’t just release all of the positive test names. The big ones are out there, so why don’t they release the rest of them…

Andre: Apparently Clemens wasn’t on the list, but we all know that Barry Bonds is crapping in his pants every time he hears more names have been leaked.

Tony:If they released, the MLB would be sued immediately by people as well as the players union. Legally they can’t just release because of privacy.

Brian: So who’s getting sued for all of these leaks then? If I was the players union, I’d be going after someone…

Nelson:MLB has not been the ones to officially leak anything, hence why they cannot say, “Here’s the whole list”…. like Tony said, a mess of lawsuits and headaches would come from it.  These names will just continue to trickle out.

Andy:MLB has the rights to this information for they were the ones conducting the test, for the good of baseball they should concede both the players union and MLB with a stipulation that no action will be taken against them.

Tony: The players Union exists for the exactly the opposite to happen. They are there to protect the player across every possible spectrum including players privacy. If a players name on that list isn’t public yet, they will fight to keep it that way.

I do agree it’s pretty much BS at this point however.

Nelson:You guys are all living in a fantasy land….the tests were CONFIDENTIAL.  MLB will never just release the whole list.  It may all get leaked, but you will never see MLB publicize it.

Andy:Nelson your missing the point I am saying what would be best for the game not that this will magically happen.  MLB is just like every other business which at this point is filled with lies, cheats and people covering them up. 

Nelson:What point am I missing?  You guys keep saying what MLB and the players union should be doing.  I’m just saying why it shouldn’t and won’t happen.  It might be best for you to enjoy the game, but it is not best for the business of baseball.

Andy: See I disagree 100% I don’t think bleeding out a list of the course of the next 5 years and constant wondering if your favorite star player took steroids is “best for business”.  Ownership needs to be taken on topic because as the onion slowly get peeled back fans will become more and more discouraged.  Especially in a economic downturn, I mean 1994 people got fed up with high salaries in a recession and it took years to get the fan base back.

Nelson: What I am saying is that opening up the flood gates and saying, “Here’s the whole list, wonder no more” which then opens up the lawsuits that was previously mentioned is not best for business.  I don’t buy the John Q. Public wondering about who did (is?) take steroids is hurting business all that much.  Baseball is hotter than ever right now.  Have you honestly stopped watching any games or buying merchandise because of this?  No you haven’t so why would anyone else?

The fan base went away in 1994 because of the strike.  Baseball is still being played despite these news items, so it’s not the same thing.  There is still something to watch, and since this test was years ago, it really is somewhat irrelevant at this point in time.

Andre: It’s funny, the conversation went from what’s right and wrong in terms of morality, fairness and legality to those names already leaked, to what’s god and bad for the game of baseball financially.

What happened there?  Talk about missing the point, it’s not about how baseball will be affected financially, it’s about gaining the respect and trust of the fans back.  Baseball needs to prove itself worthy of their fans after looking the other way for way too long and hiding information from the public who are the only victims here.  We have watched the entire situation turn into a gigantic circus of smoke and mirrors, sample tests with hidden results,  and privacy contracts that aren’t even really being enforced because they can’t.  The MLB Players Union is not a victim, they are the culprit and shouldn’t be able to hide behind the false pretense of secrecy from sample testing.  MLB Owners and MLB Front Office were enablers willing to put profit ahead of the truth the fans deserved.  NO ONE in baseball should expect any sympathy, the fans are the ones who deserve this way before the millionaires walking around on egg shells waiting for their name to be dropped next.

Matt: Did you guys catch “More to Love” last night?….


My Favorite E-mail Chain of All Time

Since our blog was born from an e-mail chain, I figured it would be fitting to post one of the funniest e-mail chains I’ve ever seen. I know it’s old, but enjoy, if you haven’t seen it before… The spider was sold on Ebay for $10,000.00 on a later date, so David definately could pay his bill!

Date: Wednesday 8 Oct 2008 12.19pm
To: David Thorne
Subject: Overdue account

Dear David,
Our records indicate that your account is overdue by the amount of $233.95. If you have already made this payment please contact us within the next 7 days to confirm payment has been applied to your account and is no longer outstanding.

Yours sincerely, Jane Gilles
From: David Thorne
Date: Wednesday 8 Oct 2008 12.37pm
To: Jane Gilles
Subject: Re: Overdue account

Dear Jane,
I do not have any money so am sending you this drawing I did of a spider instead. I value the drawing at $233.95 so trust that this settles the matter.

Regards, David.

Spider pic

 

From: Jane Gilles
Date: Thursday 9 Oct 2008 10.07am
To: David Thorne
Subject: Overdue account

Dear David,
Thankyou for contacting us. Unfortunately we are unable to accept drawings as payment and your account remains in arrears of $233.95. Please contact us within the next 7 days to confirm payment has been applied to your account and is no longer outstanding.

Yours sincerely, Jane Gilles
From: David Thorne
Date: Thursday 9 Oct 2008 10.32am
To: Jane Gilles
Subject: Re: Overdue account

Dear Jane,
Can I have my drawing of a spider back then please.

Regards, David.
From: Jane Gilles
Date: Thursday 9 Oct 2008 11.42am
To: David Thorne
Subject: Re: Re: Overdue account

Dear David,
You emailed the drawing to me. Do you want me to email it back to you?

Yours sincerely, Jane Gilles
From: David Thorne
Date: Thursday 9 Oct 2008 11.56am
To: Jane Gilles
Subject: Re: Re: Re: Overdue account

Dear Jane,

Yes please.

Regards, David.
From: Jane Gilles
Date: Thursday 9 Oct 2008 12.14pm
To: David Thorne
Subject: Re: Re: Re: Re: Overdue account

Attached

Spider pic

 

From: David Thorne
Date: Friday 10 Oct 2008 09.22am
To: Jane Gilles
Subject: Whose spider is that?

Dear Jane, Are you sure this drawing of a spider is the one I sent you? This spider only has seven legs and I do not feel I would have made such an elementary mistake when I drew it.

Regards, David.
From: Jane Gilles
Date: Friday 10 Oct 2008 11.03am
To: David Thorne
Subject: Re: Whose spider is that?

Dear David, Yes it is the same drawing. I copied and pasted it from the email you sent me on the 8th. David your account is still overdue by the amount of $233.95. Please make this payment as soon as possible.

Yours sincerely, Jane Gilles
From: David Thorne
Date: Friday 10 Oct 2008 11.05am
To: Jane Gilles
Subject: Automated Out of Office Response

Thankyou for contacting me. I am currently away on leave, traveling through time and will be returning last week.

Regards, David.
From: David Thorne
Date: Friday 10 Oct 2008 11.08am
To: Jane Gilles
Subject: Re: Re: Whose spider is that?

Hello, I am back and have read through your emails and accept that despite missing a leg, that drawing of a spider may indeed be the one I sent you. I realise with hindsight that it is possible you rejected the drawing of a spider due to this obvious limb ommission but did not point it out in an effort to avoid hurting my feelings. As such, I am sending you a revised drawing with the correct number of legs as full payment for any amount outstanding. I trust this will bring the matter to a conclusion.

Regards, David.

From: Jane Gilles
Date: Monday 13 Oct 2008 2.51pm
To: David Thorne
Subject: Re: Re: Re: Whose spider is that?

Dear David, As I have stated, we do not accept drawings in lei of money for accounts outstanding. We accept cheque, bank cheque, money order or cash. Please make a payment this week to avoid incurring any additional fees.

Yours sincerely, Jane Gilles
From: David Thorne
Date: Monday 13 Oct 2008 3.17pm
To: Jane Gilles
Subject: Re: Re: Re: Re: Whose spider is that?

I understand and will definately make a payment this week if I remember. As you have not accepted my second drawing as payment, please return the drawing to me as soon as possible. It was silly of me to assume I could provide you with something of completely no value whatsoever, waste your time and then attach such a large amount to it.

Regards, David.
From: Jane Gilles
Date: Tuesday 14 Oct 2008 11.18am
To: David Thorne
Subject: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Whose spider is that?

Attached