thescoop's profile

Name: Derek Willis
Location: Washington, DC
Member since: January 29, 2002
Last visit: June 28, 2004

thescoop has posted 25 links and 36 comments to SportsFilter and 0 links and 2 comments to the Locker Room and 2 columns.

Sports Bio

Most memorable sporting event is a tough one. I covered college football and basketball at Pitt and Florida, so I saw a lot of great games. Two that stick out most in my mind are a 1991 Pitt-Notre Dame game where Rocket Ismail had two long returns for touchdowns. Everybody in the stadium knew he was a threat and he put on an electrifying show nonetheless. Truly a spectacle. The other probably is the 1994 Florida-Florida State game in Tallahassee, otherwise known to Gators as the "Choke at Doak." Up 28-3 in the fourth quarter, UF completely fell apart and the Seminoles roared back behind an increasingly louder crowd. Down on the sideline at the end, I can still see Florida AD Jeremy Foley on one knee near the endzone, head in hands, in total disbelief. A great, great game to witness. To the extent I root for teams, I especially like Pitt and the SEC in college football and love pretty much all college basketball.

Recent Links

QB turns grayshirt into NFL internship: Paul Suhey signed with Penn State this spring but won't be in State College this fall. Instead, as a "grayshirt," he'll be in Detroit, where former Nittany Lion Matt Millen got him an internship with the Lions. "So, while other players around the country in the same situation live at home and work out on their own or go to school part time and pay their own way, Kevin Suhey will be an intern with the Lions, working in the equipment department. When he's not working, he will be throwing passes to professional receivers before practice, sitting in on quarterbacks meetings and working out in an NFL weight room."

posted by thescoop to football at 09:09 AM on June 23, 2004 - 2 comments

More than three years ago, Clemson tailback Javis Austin put a gun to his head and pulled the trigger.: Now, nearly blind but a college graduate, the former prep star tells the story of his suicide attempt, his recovery and his bitterness toward Clemson coach Tommy Bowden, who demoted Austin from his starting job. Nice piece of writing by Bob Gillespie of The State.

posted by thescoop to football at 07:50 PM on May 11, 2003 - 3 comments

The Chicago Cubs: Baseball's Enron?: Seems the Cubbies are taking advantage of Illinois' scalping law to "sell" $45 tickets to their games to a brokerage agency staffed by team executives. The broker can sell the tickets for up to $1,500 a pop. Under baseball's revenue sharing plan, the Cubs should send 30 percent of revenues into the pot, but selling the tickets to the agency means they contribute 30 percent of $45, not $1,500.

posted by thescoop to baseball at 04:05 PM on May 01, 2003 - 5 comments

The next LeBron James is coming.: O.J. Mayo, a 6-5, 15-year-old point guard from Ashland, Kentucky, is transferring to Cincinnati's North College Hill School. "North College Hill is already bracing for what could be an unprecedented media storm, at least on the Cincinnati prep level. Mayo's games routinely sold out Rose Hill's 1,000-seat gym, and NCH is already thinking of moving games from its similar-sized gym to larger venues."

posted by thescoop to basketball at 08:19 PM on April 27, 2003 - 19 comments

The Life of an NBA Referee: Today and Thursday the Sacramento Bee has a two-part series on the fishbowl professional life of NBA refs. "From within, where secrecy sometimes rules to such an extreme that the league won't release the annual salary ranges, the check-and-balance system is extensive." Bee reporter Scott Howard-Cooper got to spend a day with a game crew to prepare his stories.

posted by thescoop to basketball at 09:16 AM on April 23, 2003 - 3 comments

Recent Comments

QB turns grayshirt into NFL internship

Sorry, that's Kevin Suhey. Paul's the dad (and a former PSU player).

posted by thescoop at 09:10 AM on June 23, 2004

He was one fun player to watch - you knew he was going to shoot and still other teams couldn't stop him. That's talent. I'm glad I got to see him in his prime.

posted by thescoop at 11:27 AM on May 30, 2003

Yea Alabama, without Mike Price...

I tend to agree, rcade, that it would been history by the fall, and perhaps at another school with other priorities it would have dissipated even sooner. But not at Alabama, not with the way that program has been sliding. Under different circumstances - if Price hadn't just started at Bama, perhaps - he might have been given a second chance. When Bear Bryant is the standard, it's hard for fans to settle.

posted by thescoop at 03:31 PM on May 03, 2003

He played for Dean Smith,

I think Roy stays, too. He was offered the job before Doherty got it, and eventually turned it down, although he apparently came thisclose to accepting it. Once he turned it down, I figured he wouldn't go back on that. But I've heard the same stories about Williams and the Kansas AD not getting along, and he's losing Collison and Hinrich after this year, so maybe it's time.

posted by thescoop at 09:39 AM on April 03, 2003

Nebraska lawmaker pushing pay for college football players.

8ighteenAcres has a point: most big schools use the revenues from football to help cover the other "non-revenue" sports. When I was at U. of Florida, the men's basketball team barely paid for itself, while football pretty much covered every other sport in addition to itself. Every other team ran a deficit. (vito: I lived in two college towns where $600 was enough: Pittsburgh and Gainesville, Fla. In both cases I had roommates)

posted by thescoop at 08:46 AM on February 12, 2003

Nebraska lawmaker pushing pay for college football players.

I mostly agree that they should get some sort of stipend, but I don't know about a $1,000 a month. I managed to live alright as a grad student earning maybe $600 a month from various sources. The trouble is cost-of-living stuff: certainly Lincoln, Neb., is less expensive a place than, say, Miami. So do you have a sliding scale, and, if so, as the original story suggests, would schools use that as an inducement?

posted by thescoop at 03:41 PM on February 11, 2003

Playing short-handed:

It's astonishing to me - if not scorekeepers, then one of the referees. For all the mistakes that football refs make, I've also seen one of them counting players on the field for many of the plays. For three Big East officials (and that's not an easy post to acquire) not to notice such a basic thing is a huge mistake. I agree that you can't hand Georgetown the win in retrospect, but I think those officials -- all of them -- should not get Big East assignments for the immediate future (say, two weeks) and also be ineligible to ref the conference tournament.

posted by thescoop at 02:42 PM on January 31, 2003

I guess I'll turn rcade's posting into this week's college football roundup (less work for me!), since the big topic is the bowl lineup. I've gathered some predictions and other commentary from some of the lesser-known sportswriters around the nation. Enjoy!
Bud Withers, Seattle Times Blair Kerkhoff, Knight Ridder Jim Day, Oregon Statesman Journal Anthony Cotton, Denver Post Grant Parker, Manhattan (Kan.) Mercury
More as I find them...

posted by thescoop at 01:35 PM on December 17, 2002

Speaking of the Mean Green, did you see that Scripps Howard columnist John Lindsay acknowledged the flood of email he got after he referred to the team as North Texas State? "But every game means something to a group of fans. You want proof? Try calling New Orleans Bowl-bound North Texas, North Texas State in print. We made that mistake and got bombed by angry e-mails from UNT alums."

posted by thescoop at 12:13 PM on December 17, 2002

Don't send mail to Roy Williams.

My sentiments exactly, Sean. I mean, who talks about fan mail unless it's really good? He certainly should know better.

posted by thescoop at 01:32 PM on December 11, 2002

Ok, so you'd rather Ohio State play in the Rose Bowl and not settle the national championship question? I mean, this is what the BCS is supposed to do, and the bowls agreed to it. Maybe the Rose Bowl will want to opt out, but considering that it will get to be the national title game at some point, I seriously doubt it.

posted by thescoop at 02:37 PM on December 10, 2002

Looking at the full bowl schedule, fans have to be excited about many of the "lesser" games as well. Ok, maybe not Arkansas vs. Minnesota in the Music City Bowl, but the Gator Bowl matchup of Notre Dame and N.C. State should be a good one, and Kansas State-Arizona State should be a good Holiday Bowl contest. Like passing? Catch the GMAC Bowl pitting Louisville and Marshall, or Florida's first-ever game against Michigan, which may be Rex Grossman's last-ever game as a Gator.
The post-season coaching carousel has begun in earnest, with UCLA's Bob Toledo getting the axe (and no, we won't be needing your help in the Las Vegas Bowl, thanks). Perhaps he'll end up at one of the other coaching vacancies: Utah, East Carolina, Kentucky, Alabama and Michigan State, where it looks like the Redskins' Marvin Lewis will pass on the opportunity to put that program back together. Kentucky? That would be Guy Morriss' former employer - he went off to Baylor, becoming the second SEC coach in a week to slink off to a Big 12 Texas team. Mike Riley, assistant head coach of the New Orleans Saints, has been mentioned for various openings, as has Pitt's Walt Harris.

posted by thescoop at 09:24 AM on December 10, 2002

Completely Snookered.

Looks like A&M had a really good week - firing a well-regarded and successful coach and replacing him with, well, a successful coach who used to be well-regarded. I wonder if A&M recruits will trust Franchione's word, not just about whether he'll stick around, but in terms of playing time, positions, etc. This really stinks.

posted by thescoop at 11:32 AM on December 06, 2002

Nice piece, Patrick. I think that people looking for a comprehensive solution from the BCS are bound to be disappointed. We'd like it to be tidy and result in perfect matchups all the time, but it won't be.

posted by thescoop at 03:17 PM on December 03, 2002

I agree. I know the folks at A&M are disappointed with a 6-6 record, but this is really bewildering. Nebraska went 7-5 and let three assistants go. I wonder if A&M asked Slocum to fire some assistants and he declined, or if it just went nuclear.

posted by thescoop at 12:09 PM on December 03, 2002