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Friday, January 13, 2012

Hoop Cheese: Paying college athletes, Part 2,817; what we learned from the opening games of ACC play

Posted By on Fri, Jan 13, 2012 at 3:33 PM

Photo by Peggy BooneMaster of puppets?In this Friday the 13th installment of Triangle Offense basketball crosstalk, we look at the mixed results of the last week. As a special bonus for the occasion of this weekend's NCAA convention, to which Triangle Offense was invited to apply for credentials but declined because Indianapolis is too far away, we will treat you to an email flame-throw from a week ago, concerning the conditions of servitude among college Division I athletes. The main correspondents are David Fellerath (editor of this here blog and typer of these words), who plays Karl Marx or perhaps...

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Friday, January 6, 2012

Hoop Cheese: What we learned watching the December non-conference games

Posted By on Fri, Jan 6, 2012 at 2:17 PM

File photo by Arianna HoffmannDexter Strickland, mid-contemplation, during a game last seasonACC conference play begins this weekend, for men and women. And none too soon, after a December marked by a succession of blowouts that were effectively over two minutes after tip-off. Or, as Eric Martin suggested in this report, the games were decided when they were scheduled. Martin, along with Neil Morris, Adam Sobsey, Rob Harrington and yours truly, all took a few swats at this topic. (I told everyone I wouldn't mention my thesis that the elimination of the shot clock would improve these games.) In the end,...

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Sunday, January 1, 2012

On Duke's 40-point blowout of Western Michigan, or why we should consider a (temporary) elimination of the shot clock

Posted By on Sun, Jan 1, 2012 at 1:46 PM

Photo by Al DragoMatt Stainbrook, who scored 18 to lead the visitors, defends Miles Plumlee.CAMERON INDOOR STADIUM/ DURHAM—What is there to say about a game that shouldn't have happened? Why do the college basketball powers schedule such easy opponents in December and why are they on television? Why do we show up? These were my overriding thoughts after witnessing Friday night's encounter between the Duke Blue Devils and the Western Michigan Broncos, a team of no-hopers from Kalamazoo. The Broncos kept it close for the first few minutes, mainly through aggressive, hard-hitting defense. At 14:13 mark in the first half,...

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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

UNC men's soccer takes No. 1 seed in NCAA tourney; how good are they?

Posted By on Tue, Nov 15, 2011 at 9:03 AM

David FellerathUNC's defense repels another Boston College attack on Nov. 13, 2011WAKEMED SOCCER PARK/ CARY—The UNC men's team doesn't always play attractive soccer, but they're very difficult to beat. It's essentially a team of bruisers, of tightly coiled holding midfielders. But the third-ranked Tar Heels are a tough nut to crack. And lethal. On Sunday, the Eagles of Boston College were unable to find a solution, falling 3-1 as UNC forward Ben Speas scored two goals—including a controversial one—and assisted on a third en route to being named tournament MVP. On Monday, the Tar Heels received the top seed in...

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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

A kick in the teeth to the UNC fan: Why vacating wins matters

Posted By on Wed, Sep 21, 2011 at 3:05 PM

File photo by D.L. AndersonUNC released its response to the NCAA’s Notice of Allegations (NOA) on Monday, in advance of next month’s hearings with the NCAA in Indianapolis. The short version of the story is that in eight of nine alleged violations, we can drop the term “alleged.” The university agrees with the NCAA’s findings of violations in every case save one, the NCAA’s charge that Carolina failed to monitor social networking sites adequately. Carolina’s response surprised few who have followed the case closely, but the document still makes for interesting reading. UNC in several cases points to partially mitigating...

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Friday, September 16, 2011

Sharing the pie: practical reforms for NCAA sports—Part 2

Posted By on Fri, Sep 16, 2011 at 3:43 PM

Photo by Adam David KissickA Duke player during warms-up during a preseason practice last month. This is Part 2 of an essay in which the author proposes modest, achievable reforms that could address inequities in the perennially troubled system of college athletics. Part 1 is here. 4. Provide an increased stipend in the scholarship sports, access to a savings bond upon graduation and the ability to share in revenues from use of player names and imaging in NCAA marketing, including licensing of images and names in video games. The thrust of this proposal is two-fold. First, college players should have...

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Thursday, September 8, 2011

Remembering Big Joe Vasicek and the goal that put the Hurricanes on the map

Posted By on Thu, Sep 8, 2011 at 10:54 AM

Wednesday morning, an airplane carrying a Russian professional hockey team crashed into the Volga River outside the city of Yaroslavl just after takeoff. Almost all of the Lokomotiv team—27 players—died in the crash, among them several familiar former NHL players including Czech forward Josef Vasicek, who played six seasons for the Carolina Hurricanes. Big Joe’s name is engraved on the Stanley Cup with the rest of the 2006 Canes. Even though Vasicek was a minor player for the Canes, he was a major part of a crucial moment for the Carolina franchise, a moment that both brought Raleigh onto the...

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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Step away from the cesspool: College Sports Discussion Day 1

Posted By on Wed, Aug 31, 2011 at 3:02 PM

File photo by Jeremy M. LangeDebris on the ground during a Saturday pregame tailgate event on the Duke campus in 2008. In 2010, after a 15-year-old girl was found passed out in a portable toilet, the university banned the Saturday Tailgate.In this week's print edition of the Independent Weekly, our writers consider different aspects of the deepening controversy around college sports, and in particular, college football. Here on Triangle Offense, we want to supplement the coverage with continued discussion of the issue. What follows is the take of Bob Geary, staff reporter for the Indy. Geary is best known as...

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Saturday, August 13, 2011

Withers the high road to football success at UNC?

Posted By on Sat, Aug 13, 2011 at 9:00 AM

This is Part 2 of a two-part story; read Part 1 here. Photo by Al DragoButch Davis and David Cutcliffe at a media event a week before the UNC coach was fired.For many of UNC’s “basketball first” fans, and perhaps some “all sports” fans, success in football means a winning record, appearances in bowl games in a regular basis, beating N.C. State at least half the time, and being in the upper half of the ACC standings almost every year. Carolina has been successful by these criteria for two stretches in the last generation—between 1979 and 1983 under Dick Crum,...

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Friday, August 12, 2011

Holden vs. Butch: Collision of cultures at UNC

Posted By on Fri, Aug 12, 2011 at 9:00 AM

This is Part 1 of a two-part story; read Part 2 here. File photo by Al DragoOn July 27, Holden Thorp, the genteel, baby-faced chancellor of the University of North Carolina, fired one of the highest-paid and highest-profile employees of his institution, the drawling, $1.7 million-per-annum football coach, Butch Davis. The applause from the faculty and reform-minded media who saw Thorp’s move as a blow for books over balls was immediate and predictable. But Thorp’s assertion of academic authority simultaneously set off previously unseen depths of outrage amongst alumni football boosters, who almost immediately began claiming that the wrong head...

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Thursday, December 23, 2010

Column: What American soccer can learn from foreign basketball

Posted By on Thu, Dec 23, 2010 at 11:34 AM

Eric Draper/ White HouseLebron James runs over Yao Ming during the 2008 Olympics.During my freshman year of high school, I sat next to Alper, an exchange student from Turkey. In the middle of rural Oregon, Alper was an oddity, to say the least. In the days before the Internet brought every manner of prurient pleasure to young men everywhere, his tales of European beaches where girls tanned topless and of teenagers who could drink beer without being harassed by police seemed like an implausible fantasy. We were willing to accept his tall tales until he started telling us about European...

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Friday, December 10, 2010

America's failed World Cup bid: a legal argument for abandoning FIFA

Posted By on Fri, Dec 10, 2010 at 6:57 AM

Andy Mead/ YCJSix months after fumbling in the 2010 World Cup, England and the U.S. were shut out of hosting the 2018 and 2022 Cups. Above, England keeper Robert Green notoriously mishandled the tame effort of American midfielder Clint Dempsey (foreground).The old poker sharp’s maxim says that if you can’t spot the sucker at the table, you’re the sucker. Last Monday, when I read reports of the technical strength of the United States’ proposal for hosting the 2022 World Cup, I could only but shake my head, knowing that at FIFA decisions are not made on the basis of any...

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Saturday, October 30, 2010

I am Mike Vick: Why we should give the sanctimony a rest

Posted By on Sat, Oct 30, 2010 at 6:46 AM

Keith Allison/ Wiki CommonsMichael Vick, seen in 2006 before his legal troubles beganAfter eight weeks and an untimely rib injury, Micahel Vick is poised to return to the field this Sunday. If his initial five-game stint is any indication of what we can expect from him, it seems safe to proclaim that Michael Vick is “back.” More than that, he seems to be a much-improved version of the Falcons incarnation we saw four years ago. What seems equally obvious at this point is that people will either love him or hate him, almost irrespective of how he performs on the...

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Friday, October 22, 2010

Getting serious about concussions: How guaranteeing contracts can help

Posted By on Fri, Oct 22, 2010 at 5:03 PM

Wiki CommonsAn unknown football team from the 1910s, shortly after reforms made the game significantly saferLast weekend was one of the most violent displays of football in memory. In the college ranks, Rutgers defensive lineman Eric LeGrand was paralyzed from the neck down after a head-on collision during the fourth quarter of a game against Army. Across the NFL a slew of nasty hits left players dazed or unconscious. In the wake of this carnage, the NFL announced that it would begin suspending players for blows to the head and “devastating hits.” The issue of head and neck injuries has...

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Friday, October 1, 2010

Of robots and referees: Why won't soccer adopt instant replay?

Posted By on Fri, Oct 1, 2010 at 12:35 PM

Michael SteeleFrank Lampard during the infamous Germany gameIn the aftermath of the FIFA World Cup, fans from across the world seemed united in their desire to see soccer’s governing body revamp its refereeing system. But, FIFA has been slow to make this happen, and this week came a discouraging story in which the former head of UEFA—soccer’s governing body in Europe—said that soccer had no use for such technologies because soccer is a game, “for humans and not for robots.” Moving beyond the comic absurdity of the statement, though, one recognizes that some version of this argument seems to pop...

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Friday, September 10, 2010

You can take a fan away from his or her team, but you can't...

Posted By on Fri, Sep 10, 2010 at 6:05 PM

Jeremy M. LangeA Duke fan in 2008Last autumn, I returned from a long overseas trip, showered, changed my clothes and headed to a Chapel Hill establishment to put in a proper session while taking in a full day of college football. Looking around the bar, I noticed hats and T-shirts of all hues representing colleges from around the country. As a relative North Carolina newbie, I had expected to see the room filled with people clad in white and blue (sky or royal, your choice) with perhaps a smattering of Wolfpack red here and there. Instead, I saw groups of...

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Wednesday, September 8, 2010

This football game did not take place: N.C. State, Carter-Finley Stadium and the desert of the real

Posted By on Wed, Sep 8, 2010 at 6:40 PM

David FellerathA fan protests a personal foul committed by Western Carolina during the second half."The Gulf War did not take place." —Jean Baudrillard CARTER-FINLEY STADIUM/ RALEIGH—I arrived at Carter-Finley Stadium an hour before kickoff, for what would turn out to be the longest Saturday night I've had in a long time. I hadn't seen a live football game in several years, but college pigskin is a bug one never quite recovers from. So, on a lovely Labor Day weekend afternoon, I happily made my way to Raleigh to see the N.C. State Wolfpack open their season against a patsy from...

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Friday, September 3, 2010

Death on a Saturday afternoon: Why most college football teams have no chance

Posted By on Fri, Sep 3, 2010 at 5:15 PM

D.L. AndersonA University of Virginia player watches as a Duke player recovers a fumble in a 2008 game. Duke opens its 2010 campaign tomorrow, hosting Elon University at Wallace Wade Stadium.In his 1932 paean to bullfighting, Death in the Afternoon, Ernest Hemingway praised the artistry, skill and courage of the matador. Though he loved the spectacle and the experience of the corrida de toros, he also lamented, “the bullfight is not a sport in the Anglo-Saxon sense of the word; that is, it is not an equal contest or an attempt at an equal contest between a bull and a...

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This was a great read until we got to the World Cup part (who knows or cares, this is America) …

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what i gonna to do is to be my hero and be awesome, just like them, cannot change history and …

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wwe is too violate, if some can fix it that will be okay.

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I find myself not caring about any of this. Amazing how such a "strong, proud, powerful people" could lose the …

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Gaffe-r is right...he f8cks up all the time. "A lot of success over the last 3 years"....less smoke blows out …

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This was a great read until we got to the World Cup part (who knows or cares, this is America) …

by ProudlyUnaffiliated on A short history of the Dutch in South Africa, 1652-2010 (Sports)

what i gonna to do is to be my hero and be awesome, just like them, cannot change history and …

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