Crushed Optimists

We are twin brothers who grew up in Central Washington. This blog is devoted to the life of Seattle sports fans, as well as various other topics that we will espouse for your enjoyment. We could be called another OFFICIAL SEATTLE SEAHAWKS site, but we'll take our uneducated crack at the Mariners, Sonics, and Huskies as well. A Seattle Sports Blog? Must be the land... of crushed optimism!

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Ultimate Explosion!!

Hope everyone had a terrific New Year. One final holiday meeting of the editorial staff of the Crushed Optimists took place over the last couple of days, so blogging was not on the agenda. However, many bowl games were. I have to say, for meaningless exhibition games, college football really came through. Just about every game the past two days turned out great, with the exception of Iowa-Florida. I'm a little curious how no team can find someone who is able to kick a ball through the uprights, but that's another discussion for another day. A few bowl observations...

- LSU and Ohio State proved why a playoff would be beneficial for everyone. Ohio State lost without Troy Smith to Texas. What would the outcome of that game be now? I would love to have seen LSU/USC as well. Those were good teams who deserved better.

- Who is a better quarterback, DJ Shockley, Marcus Vick, or Vince Young? More appropriately, who will actually play quarterback in the pros? All have serious throwing flaws.

- The Pac-10 officiating crew in the Georgia-West Virginia game embarrassed us all.

- Speaking of which, that fake punt call by Rich Rodriguez is the best call of the year so far. Brilliant gutsy play.

- Could ABC have thought about moving away from Brady Quinn's sister at all? Did we need to see her every reaction to every play every five minutes?

- This game tonight will be amazing. Still, USC wins by ten.

- Moving along, the other big news of course is that the Sonics finally parted ways with Bob Weiss. To this, every pseudo-Sonics fan (including myself) raises a glass and praises the Sonics, while also berating them for making the stupid decision in the first place to hire him (which Steve Kelley actually elaborates on well). Art Thiel has the best take.

When previous coach Nate McMillan decamped to Portland, Sonics veterans endorsed Weiss's ardent campaign for the job, then through 30 games displayed abject gutlessness when it came time to back their convictions.
It was apparent during any game you could randomly pick that the Sonics were not interested in trying. I could have played better defense. Any opposing point guard could take it to the rack. Any opposing big man could have a good game. It was frustrating and disheartening to watch. I would almost have preferred the Sonics to be last year's Charlotte Bobcats, at least they tried every night out.

Weiss sabotaged himself by responding to a bad setup with a disorganized approach further compromised by a perceived need to keep happy those players who helped him win his unexpected promotion. Instead, he made matters worse. His attempts to cover a flawed roster with ever-changing roles and lineups -- Collison at center? Damien Wilkins at point guard? -- always looked like the nervous twitches of a desperate rookie instead of the patient cool of a 63-year-old sage.
This was my biggest problem with Bob Weiss the coach as well. The defense was the player's fault. The rotation problems was all Weiss. People have discussed Nick Collison's "regression". Those people have apparently not noticed that Collison was playing out of his mind when Bobby first penciled him in the starting rotation before jumping him around. Bob Hill needs to make Nick Collison a priority. Damien Wilkins was signed as a perimeter defender, our own Bruce Bowen. Then he was rarely used, even with opposing guards torching us. Bob Hill needs to make Damien Wilkins a priority (but not at point guard). We don't ask much from an NBA coach, as we realize that more than any other sport the players determine a coach's success, but at least stick with rotations. Good luck, Bob Hill. Your resume is solid. Now make it all pay off.

- Finally, I was at the Husky basketball game last Saturday against Arizona. What a terrific game. As a Husky fan, we should be excited that it took that kind of insane shooting performance from the Wildcats to beat us, and we should be excited to again finally see the Huskies go up against a good opponent. I am, if possible, more excited about this team now than I was. Go Dawgs!

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