Sunday, November 20, 2011

Sunday Six Pack

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If you missed the last few days of college football, you missed a LOT. Four of the top ten teams in the country lost this weekend: #2 Oklahoma State, #4 Oregon, #5 Oklahoma and #7 Clemson. So much for any case you could make for a non-All SEC title game. The top three teams in the country right now are all in the SEC. LSU has a strangle hold on the #1 ranking, Alabama is #2 with their only loss coming at the hands of the Tigers, and now Arkansas is #3 with their only loss occurring in Tuscaloosa.

There's some interesting scenarios here. The current rules in the BCS prohibit more than 2 teams from any conference playing in the BCS Bowls in a given year UNLESS "two non-champions from a BCS conference finish as the top two teams in the final BCS standings, in which case they will meet in the National Title Game while their conference champion will play in their conference's BCS bowl game." So barring some crazy scenario in which that happens, one of these three teams is going to be denied a BCS bid. Things will get REALLY interesting if Arkansas somehow pulls off the upset of unbeaten LSU this coming weekend. The way this season has been going, I have no idea what to expect.

Here's a look at the latest BCS Standings released tonight:

1. LSU 11-0
2. Alabama 10-1
3. Arkansas 10-1
4. Oklahoma State 10-1
5. Virginia Tech 10-1
6. Stanford 10-1
7. Boise State 9-1
8. Houston 11-0
9. Oklahoma 8-2
10. Oregon 9-2

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It took 12 matches, but Newcastle finally has their first loss of the 2011-12 Premier League Season. Facing off against also unbeaten Manchester City yesterday, Newcastle fell on the road by a score of 3-1 needing an 89th minute goal from substitute Dan Gosling to avoid the shutout. Newcastle finished 12th a year ago, and the year before that weren't even in the Premiership having been relegated to the English League Championship in 2009. The last time Newcastle finished in the top 5 of the Premiership (2004), they still had Alan Shearer (pictured above) playing up top for them. The win improves City to 11-0-1 and they maintain their 5 point lead over Manchester United atop the EPL Table. United also won on Saturday defeating Swansea City 1-0 on a goal from Chicharito. Meanwhile surging Arsenal won their 5th straight getting two more goals from Robin van Persie as they slowly creep back into the picture. Finally Liverpool picked up a big 2-1 road win at 4th place Chelsea today getting a late goal from Glen Johnson to pick up three big points.


Tobin Heath's first goal of the year gave the U.S. Women a 1-1 tie against Sweden in their final game of 2011. Playing in front of the largest crowd ever to watch the Women's National Team play in Arizona, the U.S. fell behind in the first half, but Heath one-timed the rebound of an Alex Morgan shot to salvage the draw. The U.S. finishes the year 13-3-4 (although 2 of those ties were decided by shootouts in which the U.S. went 1-1). Two of those three losses were against Sweden, who the U.S. failed to beat this year in three tries. It's not going to get any easier going forward as current U.S. Coach Pia Sundhage has expressed a desire to coach her native Sweden when her contract expires at the end of next season.

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Once upon a time, just a few short months ago the AFC South had Matt Hasselbeck, Matt Schaub, Peyton Manning and David Garrard under center. All 4 have played in Pro Bowls, and Hasselbeck and Manning both led teams to Super Bowls. Now it's conceivable that in Week 12, the AFC South could trot out Jake Locker, Matt Leinart, Curtis Painter and Blaine Gabbert. Total career wins: 9. Wow.


Seriously, that thing is ridiculous. It's medieval looking.
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American center back Clarence Goodson scored his first league goal for Brøndby since May helping lead his club to a 2-1 upset over defending Danish League Champions FC Copenhagen. Goodson, who plays on the backline for the U.S. National Team scored against Panama during the 2011 Gold Cup.

Meanwhile in the English League Championship (one below the Premier League) Robbie Findley, formerly a member of Real Salt Lake and a member of the 2010 World Cup Team, scored his 5th goal for Nottingham Forest helping them to a 3-2 win over Ipswich. This was his second goal in league play to go along with 3 that he scored during the Carling Cup. Findley has not appeared in a game for the National Team since the World Cup.
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