published Friday, August 10th, 2012

5-at-10: Mailbag and then some

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    This file photo taken March 13, 2012, shows Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard during an NBA basketball game in Orlando, Fla. The Los Angeles Lakers have a deal in place to acquire Dwight Howard from Orlando.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Kudos gang. Great week and we had so many great letters we had to kick a couple to the curb.

And we're only going to lightly cover the Dwight Howard trade, which a) makes the Lakers the team to beat — a starting five of Nash, Kobe, World Peace, P. Gasol and Dwight is slap nasty; b) crippled the Magic worse than FDR in the final years and c) lasted six months too long and was five shades worse than LeBron's "Decision." The Lakers improved from a 7-to-1 pick to win the NBA title to a 3-to-1 pick, right behind the Heatles at 2-to-1. (Side betting note: IF you want to bet on Team USA vs. the Argentina Ginobilis, the U.S. is a 25-point favorite. If you want to bet straight-up on the U.S. winning, you'll have to bet $8,500 to win $100. No thanks.)

And we watched the season finale of Dallas, and we have to say that we had high hopes going into season 1 of Dallas 2.0 and they were met and exceeded. Very good first year and an excellent finale (Spoiler alert: A great montage at the end with John Ross going to the dark side to join J.R. Vader as Cash's "God's Gonna Cut You Down" playing in the background.)

We also will be back to update the PGA Championship.

From the "Talks too much" studios, here's a stuffed mailbag.

From Todd962

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    Spain's Felipe Perrone Rocha, left, puts his hand on United States' Tony Azevedo while defending during a men's semifinal fifth to eighth place water polo match at the 2012 Summer Olympics, Friday, Aug. 10, 2012, in London.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Jay, mailbag suggestion. What Olympic events do you think you could hang in (Handball, duh, I'd be awesome) and what Olympic events do you think you would forever be immortalized on YouTube from being so horrible in. (Platform High Dive. "In all my years as a broadcaster, I have never seen such a horrific belly flop from those heights. Lets hope they can sew his rib cage back up.")

Mr. 962,

We frequently spend too much time on mailbag questions. They haunt us and hang over our heads like a toot in an elevator.

This one has been with us all week. The question is simply that good. Plus, it was clairvoyant since it was asked a full day before this happened. Well played indeed.

We're going to break them down into three categories — the good, bad and ugly — with three events in each. Let's go for the gold. U-S-A! U-S-A! 5-at-10! 5-at-10!

The good:

There's no way we could compete with any of the Olympians, but events like archery, handball and ping pong at least lend themselves to the opportunity that practice is the most important ingredient. There's not some overwhelming athletic edge between the curlers and pongers than the rest of us.

The bad:

These are the embarrassing events that would show the extreme difference in skills. We're thinking the 200 meters would be excruciatingly humbling. Those dudes cover 200 meters in 20 seconds, and the 15 or so extra seconds of dead air time the announcers would have to fill waiting on the 5-at-10 to cross the line would feel like 15 Sundays. We'll also put the any and all swimming events, especially those involving strokes other than freestyle, and believe they would need a lifeguard on duty if we were forced to swim some of those super long events. Finally we'll go with water polo. We're certain we drown in that event.

The ugly:

These are the ones that would live in YouTube infamy. And the choices were wide and varying. We'll go in order: High diving, any and all of the gymnastics stuff — and when we first thought of this question the images of Vaughn and Ferrell in "Old School" were very striking — and the hurdles. Seriously, think about trying to do the hurdles, tripping over the first couple and then just pulling a Costanza and sliding around the last dozen. Or even going under a couple of them.

In fact, we felt obliged to include three from the Winter Olympics, too. Figure skating would be a debacle — and that's just the uniforms for crying out loud — as would the ski jumps and speed ski races.

Great question, and feel free to share your choices.

From Jonathan Cook (in the Texas satellite branch of the 5-at-10)

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    San Diego Chargers running back Ryan Mathews (24) is tackled by Green Bay Packers linebacker A.J. Hawk (50) as he carries the ball on his first run in an NFL preseason football game, Thursday, Aug. 9, 2012, in San Diego. Mathews broke his clavicle on the 5-yard run.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

I got to say the 5-at-10 Dallas office took a little property damage last night over the sad fact Green Bay was too pig-headed to put B.J. in until the last two minutes of the game. (my opinion mind you). Harrold was CLEARLY not getting it done and B.J. could have easily moved GB within 1 point had he been put in at the start of the fourth. Does Green Bay really hate Chattanooga people that much?

Probably not, but then again we're exactly 23 days away before South Florida and all will hopefully be right with the world and we can get back to what's important so I can feel better (Translation: willing to sit through three hours of completely useless and sometimes unnecessary ESPN commentary for two minutes of a Mocs player in action just to get a small taste of Mocs action until the season actually starts). So what's the 5-and-10's official review last nights performance?

Jonathan,

We too were underwhelmed with how much time B.J. got. But we believe that was a factor of Graham Harrell being less than impressive than anything else.

As for Coleman's performance, it was solid. He finished 4-of-8 for 36 yards. It was not great but it was not bad either.

In fact, we believe the most telling stat was the 0/0 in the sacks category. He handled himself well in the pocket and in the moment, and more than anything that's what we took from B.J.'s first pro experience.

From StuckinKent

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    Joost Luiten of Netherlands watches his putt on the eighth green during the first round of the PGA Championship golf tournament on the Ocean Course of the Kiawah Island Golf Resort in Kiawah Island, S.C., Thursday, Aug. 9, 2012.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Here's a question for your mailbag. In honor of Joost Luiten being in the early lead, who are the Mount Rushmore of most unexpected winners of a major?

After this week, only football (and maybe an MLB playoff question) allowed in your mailbag until at least December.

Stuck,

We're really that close to football that your second thought is correct.

As for your question, well-played, especially considering the last two major moments — Joost "Newton" Luiten unexpectedly leading and Ernie Els unexpectedly winning The Open — and we'll break it down to two Rushmores.

The unexpected unknowns — John Daly, Ben Curtis, Larry Mize (kind of part of both lists) and Francis Ouimet.

The unexpected winners in the final day — Els, Y.E. Yang ("It's a parking lot Yang, enough with the pictures" and who didn't think Tiger was going to nuke him), Paul Lawrie Charl Schwartzel.

From CelticVol

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    Atlanta Braves' Ben Sheets works the mound against the Philadelphia Phillies during the first inning of a baseball game, Friday, July, 27, 2012.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Hey 5@10,

The Braves are smokin’ hot but the Nats are too. Can you comment on the great move by GM Frank Wren on signing Ben Sheets and acquiring Paul Janish? These two guys were supposed to plug a hole till something better came along and both have exceeded expectations. I believe Janish has earned himself a roster spot for next year while Sheets is pitching at a Cy Young level after not playing for two years. Thanks 5@10 for your hard work.

P.S. How fast do you think you could run the 100 meters?

CelticVol,

Our ace columnist Mark Wiedmer wrote about Sheets earlier and he was spot on. Dude has become the best mid-season acquitision of the year and the Braves best since getting Fred McGriff back in the mid-1990s. And he may turn out to be the best middle of the year pitching move since 1984 when the Cubs landed Rick Sutcliffe. And yes, while Sutcliffe can make the occasional ear bleed on ESPN broadcasts, dude shined like new money with the Cubs in '84, going 16-1 in 20 starts after being acquired in mid-June.

As for Janish, his ability to play a solid short and his penchant for picking up timely hits has earned a spot on the Braves bench for the foreseeable future. Heck, the Braves love guys they like (we promise that made sense when we wrote it) and keep them around. Ask Matt Diaz and David Ross about it.

The Sheets move alone puts Wren in the discussion for executive of the year. Whether it was a fluke a stroke of genius, it worked and the Braves landed a guy pitching like an ace and did not have to part with a prospect. If the Maholm deal works out and the Braves make the playoffs, Wren will deserve serious consideration for some awards.

As for the 100 meters, as we discussed earlier this week, personal speed is the "I caught a fish thiiiiissssss big" of the sports universe. Not unlike how every thinks they have a sense of humor, everyone thinks they are faster than they actually are. We don't believe more than 10 percent of the every day people would run better than a 5.0-second time in the 40-yard dash. So for the 100, we think somewhere around 14 seconds would be the baseline, and it would not surprise us for it be a little higher.

From Stewwie

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    Signal Mountain's Reese Phillips poses in the Times Free Press studio in this file photo.
    Photo by Jake Daniels /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Thinking of B.J.'s post-high school football success, what's the Rushmore of QBs who played high school ball in the Scenic City? Not QBs who merely had outstanding high school stats, but rather QBs who had success at the next level in addition to their high school success. I think B.J. is a lock for that Rushmore already, but unless I'm drawing a major blank, I can't think of many other nominees to consider for the Rushmore.

Stewwie,

Great question. And we should have done more research, but we're hoping some of the longtime area regulars around these parts like OG and Jomo may chip in as well.

We broaden the search range to our coverage area and we'll go with B.J. Coleman, Andy Kelly, Bobby Scott and Steve Sloan.

If we were forced to Hamilton County proper, we'd go with B.J., Bill Romans, Gene Etter and believe it or not Reese Phillips, who is about to start his senior year at Signal Mountain. Phillips can play and he is the second best QB we've seen in our decade-plus in Chattanooga.

about Jay Greeson...

Jay was named the Sports Editor of the Times Free Press in 2003 and started with the newspaper in May 2002 as the Deputy Sports Editor. He was born and raised in Smyrna, Ga., and graduated from Auburn University before starting his newspaper career in 1997 with the Newnan (Ga.) Times Herald. Stops in Clayton and Henry counties in Georgia and two years as the Sports Editor of the Marietta (Ga.) Daily Journal preceded Jay’s ...

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chas9 said...

Dicky Clark (Rossville, then UGA, was a great high school QB in the 1970's, played mostly defense in college.

There's only one Solo. Han drools, Hope rules!

Bolt is deservedly celebrated for his 100 and 200 excellence, but Kenya's Rudisha had a great 800 WR run yesterday. Did you see that somebody figured out that if Jesse Owens best 100 started at the same time as Bolt's best, Owens would be a whopping 6.5 yards behind when Bolt broke the tape.

The rhythmic gymnastic events are weird and embarrassing. They gotta go.

But synchronized swimming is awesome in its awesomeness. The teams practice way more than football teams ever do, and in water. (Randy Moss was the commentator.) I'm not even sure what they do is humanly possible. It may be CGI generated images, not real flesh and blood girls.

August 10, 2012 at 10:54 a.m.
Todd962 said...

I think I could go all day with the good, bad, and ugly of me competing in the Olympics. From impalement on the pole vault(Nobody wants to see a human popsicle) to my olympic level performance on vault.

"And now from the United States, Todd962. Its a very unusual name, he tells us his parents were inspired by Cher and robots. And here he goes, off the spring board....and a very unusual vault. I have never seen a competitor perform that move on the Olympic platform nor have I heard them scream the maneuver while performing it."

"Leapfrog!!"

Jay, why no advertisements for the Jamboree tonight? It is tonight, correct? If a guy goes down there could he get a hotdog or nachos? These are my new mailbag questions.

August 10, 2012 at 11:51 a.m.
JonathanMCook said...

-Interesting seeing Andy Kelly on the Rushmore list. While he did have a semi-steller career at UT-Knoxville, I'm still reminded of the fact his peakness came on the form of QB with the Nashville Kats. Not exactly the NFL but those were some fun games to go to...and long midnight to 2 AM drives back home from I-24.

-Since we're on the subject of TV Dallas, I was shocked by the "other" spoiler that I won't mention after it sunk-in for me. I'll say this much, its a very good thing Chris Ewing (Bobby's son) IS adopted. Otherwise, TV Dallas would be associated with "banjo music" playing in background.

Or references to Hamlet.

-I agree BJ was great in the pocket. I'm really more upset over that knucklehead who dropped that final pass. Had he hung on to the ball, I felt it would give BJ greater the opportunity for more game time going into Cleveland. Frierson wants a Skine vs. Coleman match-up. I doubt it though because Buster is within range of a possible starting position based on his stats from last year.

August 10, 2012 at 11:58 a.m.
ordinaryguy said...

Mt Rushmore of HS QB's ...you must include the surrounding area...afterall Rossville is actually closer to Chattanooga than Signal Mtn..

Bobby Scott - Rossville - long time backup to Archie Manning in New Orleans then two years in New Jersey for the Generals...a long pro career

Marty Lowe - Red Bank - A resonably decent QB in college at Louisville

Andy Kelly - Rhea County

B.J. Coleman - enough said

Honorable mention - Gary Orr Soddy Daisy, Fred Holder Red Bank

FYI...Tomorrow night should prove interesting with the Signal Mtn / Ridgeland scrimmage...remember scrimmages in Ga are played just like a game...Reese Phillips vs Vonn Bell hmmmmm

August 10, 2012 at 11:59 a.m.
chas9 said...

OG--Thanks for getting my brain back on track. I was thinking Bobby Scott when I mentioned that other Rossville QB. No comparison. Scott's da man.

August 10, 2012 at 12:41 p.m.
jgreeson said...

From friend of the show StuckinKent —

Honey Badger dismissed at LSU. Out. Gone. Ka-poot. Looking for another school.

Wow.

The national championship race is getting even more interesting.

He wasn't great at coverage, but he was always around the ball and made huge plays consistently. Plus, he had special teams. Unreal.

———

And, as soon as it was announced here was the text we received from assistant sports editor Jim Tanner: "If the SEC is going to start kicking out the potheads and the criminals, a) the SEC's BCS streak will be over this year and b) the FCS playoffs are going to be AWESOME."

August 10, 2012 at 1:38 p.m.
John_Proctor said...

And the emergence of Alabama State as a national power and team of last resort begins.

August 10, 2012 at 1:55 p.m.
Stewwie said...

I had forgotten about Andy Kelly. Good choice. I'm not familiar with the others but it sounds like they are deserving. Thanks Jay and OG. We've got some other young guns from the Chattavegas coverage area who still have a chance to make a name for themselves at the next level:

Chad Voytik is at Pitt...probably won't play much if at all this year, but may have a chance at the starting job next year when this year's senior QB is gone.

Huesman and Robinson at UTC are young guys with lots of potential. Can't tell at this point if they'll split time for the long haul, but an injury to one will push the other into the limelight, maybe for good.

Ditto what Jay said about Reese Phillips. A lot is being said too of the Canada kid that just transferred to Baylor. Looks like he's got the raw talent to achieve greatness, but to be fair, he hasn't played a down in the U.S. yet.

August 10, 2012 at 2:43 p.m.
jgreeson said...

9er —

Nothing says the weekend like the "A rules and B drools." Well played.

And if your an upper-crust sports announcer, how unfortunate is being named Randy Moss? Dude does swimming ballet and horse racing, and he's Randy Moss. It'd be like being a female rapper named Rachel Ray.

962 —

Good stuff.

And we'll see your "Leapfrog," and raise you a "Cannon Ball" from the high dive at the Olympic pool.

Done and done.

And yes, there is a Jamboree tonight. And yes we are going. And yes you can get a hot dog and Co-Cola there. In fact, tonight the 5-at-10s are celebrating our anniversary and the Mrs. is cool going to the Jamboree. She rocks.

JC —

Great call, and that would make Chris and his baby momma adopted cousins, right? If that's the case, the name of the show should Dothan rather than Dallas.

OG —

Nice list and the shootout tomorrow night could be awesome, because as high as we are on Reese, Vonn may be the best defensive player to come through here since the Bullocks brothers.

Stuck —

Honey Badger stuff is nuts. Nuts. It's like Mike Dyer. If the superstars are getting booted, let's just assume it's not for missing curfew, huh?

John P —

Alabama State. Or North Alabama. And you know Jax State has been on the blower. Wait, blower may not be the best choice of words. Anywho.

Stew got what we need —

Huesman and Robinson were both excellent high school QBs and it will be interesting to watch Voytik's career arc.

August 10, 2012 at 2:54 p.m.
Todd962 said...

I guess the Honey Badger does not get everything that he wants. Its going to be a pain correcting all those Youtube videos now.

It seems Usain Bolt has found the key to being fast despite being tall. Jay, I dont know if your 100 time is that way for the same reasons as mine but I always compared it to a giraffe. The first twenty meters youre just trying not to trip over yourself cause you've too much leg down there but after we get going, get out of the way.

What a romantic anniversary. If I spot you I'll have the maitre d' send over a complimentary bottle of their finest soda. I spent a Valentine's day with Lady Todd in college building cornhole boards in a two bedroom apartment. In hindsight I probably should have waited and built them outside after the rain or especially not that day, but nothing screams romance like a bed full of saw dust and some Miller Lites. Shes a dove.

August 10, 2012 at 3:55 p.m.
BIspy4 said...

Or should we say with Honey Badger ... ka-puff?

Like he cares what Les Miles does. He's Honey Badger! He's got more cachet than Vandelay Industries.

A good sports discussion day just got even better (hope the Lakers can hang in the 35 and over league at the Y. 'Cause that's where they're headed). Thank you, Honey Badger! You're my friend.

August 10, 2012 at 4:13 p.m.
chas9 said...

Next time I'm flying Vietair. Your fine newspaper reports this:

A group of bikini-clad beauty queens in Vietnam recently strutted through a packed airplane as dance music blasted a song with the lyric "I'm crazy for banana."

And just think what a blast the flight would have been with Honey Badger aboard!

August 10, 2012 at 4:47 p.m.
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