Is VY suffering from bitchassness?

September 11, 2008

Perhaps.

Let’s look at the evidence — the last 3 years for Vince Young.

First of all, as the starting quarterback for the University of Texas, you walk on water. You are guaranteed an all-access pass to any and all of the ASSets the university and the city of Austin has to offer.

Then, you play in and win arguably the greatest college football game of all-time in a Rose Bowl victory over perennial power USC.

A few months later, despite questions of arm mechanics and Wonderlic socres, you’re drafted No. 3 overall by the Titans and instantly become a millionaire.

You become the starter in your rookie season, lead your team to several fourth quarter come-from-behind wins, earning a trip to the Pro Bowl.

After one season, you’re on the cover of Madden and lead your team to the playoffs. Even then, you supposedly considered leaving the game.

Now, in your third season, you have a bad day in the first game of the season, and you can’t take the heat?

To be fair, I, nor anyone else for that matter, seem to know the real deal to Young’s latest whine fest.

To recap, the Titans WON the game on Sunday, but VY didn’t have his best game and suffered a knee injury of some sort. Like every other QB in the league who has a bad day, he was booed. Apparantley, Young was down in the dumps later on and went missing for four hours, which alarmed close friends and family.

False alarm. He was and still is ok.

Physically.

Emotionally is another story. By all accounts, it seems VY simply can’t handle the pressure. He has been the man all these years and now, because he’s not lighting up the NFL and the fans and media aren’t kissing his ass, he’s an emotional wreck.

News flash: It’s the NFL – a man’s league. Since that Rose Bowl game, I’ve been a fan and have wanted the best for Young. But this episode has left me in a state of indifference. So what they booed you. So what you didn’t have a great game.

Suck it up.

The name of this blog is the Black Quarterback. It’s in honor of the struggles minority quarterbacks have had to overcome. Are the smart enough? Do they have the skills?

Are they mentally strong?

Vince Young, one of the bright young black QBs in the NFL needs to show he’s mentally strong.

Or he’ll have a very short career.


No celebrating allowed

September 10, 2008

Let me first say again, that it’s good to “be back” and hopefully I’ll be back on a more consistent basis.

That said, like many I thoroughly enjoyed the Olympics this year. Not since the 96 games in Atlanta, have I been that excited to catch the competition each day and night and keep up with how the US was doing.

It’s undeniable that the face of these Olympics was Michael Phelps. The Baltimore native transcended the games and captured the attention and imagination of even the casual fan. From the world records to the wins by the closest of margins, Phelps’ record-breaking eight gold medal performance was to me, one of the greatest individual sport performances of all time. While he says he’ll swim in 2012 in London, he is set for life and through endorsements and speaking engagements, will never have to step foot in a pool if he doesn’t want to.

But coming in a close second to Phelps for the story of the Olympics was Usain Bolt, the dynamic, charismatic sprinter from Jamaica. Maybe it was just me, but I’d never heard of this guy prior to this summer. Immediately, if nothing else, the guy won the award for greatest name in sports. But Bolt did more than that. In an instant, actually 9.69 seconds, Bolts made everyone take notice. Who was this guy and where did he come from.

Asafa Powell? Whatever. Tyson Gay? Please. He dusted them.

…and then rejoiced.

Bolt let up with about 20 yards to go and was in utter joy because of his win. But, for whatever reason, critics blasted him. Why? I don’t recall the chairman of the IOC giving his opinion when Phelps was screaming and splashing the water after a couple of his wins.

When athletes, particularly minorities, celebrate, it’s often perceived in the media as being cocky, brash and disrespectful to the game and their opponents. And while in many cases that’s true, more often than not, the accusations are completely off base.

We need more Bolt. I just hope he’s clear of steriods. He’s a star in the making and is fun to watch.

The amazing athleticism…and the showmanship


Don’t call it a comeback

August 18, 2008

For reasons unknown, I decided to take a sabbatical from The Black Quarterback. I could blame it on the work. I could blame on a lack of motivation. I could blame it on the fact that I wanted to enjoy my summer by traveling, visiting family and vacationing. Nonetheless, I’m back. And hopefully will be back on a consistent basis.


When did Barkley become so beloved?

May 28, 2008

For the record, I love Charles Barkley.

I grew up in what I’ve said on numerous occasions was the greatest eras in the NBA — the 90s. And Barkley was among the top players during that time starring most notably the 76ers and later with the Suns and Rockets. Barkley never won a championship, but was named to numerous All-Star teams, won an MVP and was part of the original and only Dream Team.

Again, I’m a Barkley fan.

If my memory serves me correctly, while he was playing, Barkley was just as loved for this off the court “antics” as for his play for 48 minutes. The media loved him, because of his candor and, aside from the infamous spitting incident and the “I am not a role model” commercial Barkley maintained favor  and had crossover appeal, which, for that time, was essential for the black athlete.

But to his disadvantage (or maybe in hindsight it was an advantage), depsite his success and personality, Barkley spent his career in the shadow of his boy Michael Jordan. During that era, Barkley was at best the third most popular black NBA player behind Jordan and Magic Johnson, both of whom won multiple championships.

But as I watch the NBA playoffs, have conversations from time to time with people at work and watch how Barkley is talked about in the media, it’s become clear that Barkley is without a doubt the most beloved former NBA player period and arugably the most popular athlete, past or present.

I just can’t figure out when that transition occurred.

Barkley, along with Ernie Johnson and Kenny Smith, is part for the very popular TNT NBA team. Most of the time, Barkley talks about everything except basketball and does it in a way that nobody raises an eyebrow or questions him. When he does get in trouble or says something controversial — it’s just Charles being Charles.

How he’s ascended to this status is beyond me. Maybe, since he didn’t venture into coaching or front office work like Jordan and Larry Bird, nor became a successful entrepreneur like Magic, he was able to carve his niche through television which allows him to be visible and in turn land commercials with Dwyane Wade.

Whatever the case, Barkley is one of THE go-to voices for all things, not just basketball. People value his opinion and maybe, it’s not really important why we do.


Doc or Bust?

May 20, 2008

Often times during a game, whether football or basketball, I’ll get a call from my mom, who, as a result of me playing sports growing up, has turned into a pretty solid sports fan. Most of these calls come at the end of the quarter or at halftime to “see if I’m watching.” Sometimes I am, sometimes I’m not, but I take the calls anyway to make it appear as though I’m interested. One of the funny things about my mom’s fandom and many other “old schoolers” alike is that no matter whether they are familiar with the team or not, as long as there is a black coach on the sidelines, they’re pulling for that particular team.

Exhibit A: The 2008 NBA Playoffs

Last night after the Hornets were eliminated by the Spurs in the Western Conference semis, my mom called and was sad. She said: “Well, another one of my teams as been eliminated, so I guess I’ll pull for the Celtics now.”

I couldn’t help but chuckle because this has been going on for the last month. When Dallas was eliminated and subsequently Avery Johnson was fired, you would have though all hell was about to break lose. And now that Mike Brown and Byron Scott’s teams are no longer in it, there’s only one of “us” left — Doc Rivers. And for my mom and others who are loyal supporters of the black coach, it’s their only hope.

While I support the black coach in any sport, it’s not as serious as those in my parents and grandparents generation. If you really think about it, you can understand their position. In their day and still somewhat today, it was rare to see a black coach in any sport. “We” were considered not smart enough or not skilled enough to be a coach at the highest level. Al Campanis  in a famous interview, said blacks didn’t have the necessities to be a manager in Major League Baseball.

We’ve definitely come a long way in leadership in professional sports. You can find black coaches in every sport at every level. The lesson I took from observing my mom is that people of all races should be proud of the advancement and success of black coaches, but not get comfortable and forget to support them, not matter what team they represent.


Bron Bron to Mama James: “Sit yo a** down”

May 15, 2008

I saw this live and after I figured out the young lady in the middle of the rucus was Gloria James, LeBron’s mom, I died laughing. And I wasn’t even going to bring this up until Jemele weighed in today.

I agree with her on this point– you should never, under any circumstances, cuss and your mom, or either parent for that matter. As upset as I’ve been at both of my parents, I can’t even fathom what would happen if I drop a cuss word on them.

But in this situation and under the circumstances, I can understand. I can also understand it if he and his mom have that kind of relationship — which some people do — where bad language is the norm. But in a crucial game four, in a must-win situation and with large men in the way, I can see how Bron Bron would be upset and let that slip. I can see it, but it doesn’t make it right. James apologized after the game and on ESPN the following day.

Jemele suggests we can’t look at LeBron the same way after this. I disagree. Anyone who’s played sports has dealt with over zealous parents and, while we may not have cussed at them, we’ve wanted to put them in their place. Many my feel as though LeBron was out of line, particularly since this was seen by millions. But, in this case I think we can give him a pass because when you’re paid millions and in the heat of battle,you have to be on your game at all times. And, if someone gets in your way they’re fair game, even if it’s your mom.

Just make sure apologize real quick.


Kornheiser takes buyout from Washington Post

May 14, 2008

Although he hasn’t written a column for The Post in what seems like forever, Tony Kornheiser made it official today — he’s taking a buyout and leaving the Washington Post. If you’ve paid attention, he’s made several hints at this on PTI over the past several weeks so this doesn’t come totally as a surprise, to me at least.

Nationally, Kornheiser is known obviously for his work on ESPN, particulalry PTI (one of my favorite shows) and Monday Night Football. But, before he became a “brand” he was one of the best columnists in the country who not only wrote about sports, but had a weekly column in the Post’s Style section. Those of us who grew up reading him can vouch to this. When he was in the zone, he could hang with the best of them and he’s combination of style, wit and general good writing made him a must read.

In recent years, he’s written less and less as other opportunities have presented themselves. People have blasted him for this, especially when his wingman, Mike Wilbon still writes somewhat regularly for the Post, but I can’t say I wouldn’t have done the same thing. A lot of the bashing comes from people who tend to have forgotten that TK has been working for the Post for nearly 30 years.

I wish him the best and, it’s not like he’s going anywhere. PTI’sstill going strong, his radio show is great and he still has MNF. But still, in the age of dying newspapers, it’s sad to see one I looked up to leaving. I’ll put his Bandwagon columns up against any series of sports columns past or present.


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