published Monday, December 31st, 2012

5-at-10: Bowl standings and picks, NFL dazzles, the year that was 2012

Thanks for swinging by last week during the holiday time. The mini 5-at-10s bring our Cal Ripken streak to 570 consecutive Mondays-through-Fridays. Yep, we're pretty proud of that.

From the "Talk too much" studios, let's do work.

Goodbye 2012

  • photo
    Seven-year-old beauty pageant regular and reality show star Alana "Honey Boo Boo" Thompson signs a photo in her home in McIntyre, Ga.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

We're a sucker for lists and year-end type stuff that has dominated the air waves as we put a bow on 2012.

In truth, this was a good year in sports, a pretty good year in movies, a great year for TV shows with a city in their name and a sad year for losing icons. Check the list — Whitney Houston, Dick Clark, Andy Griffith, Richard Dawson, Steve Sabol, Marvin Miller, Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf — and we lost a lot of all-timers in their field.

Heck, you could have a pretty stout Mt. Rushmore of all-time TV personalities with Dick Clark, Andy Griffith, Larry Hagman and Sherman Hemsley, each of whom died in '12.

And we'll cover this more this week, but let's say our hopes for 2013 are tempered at best considering the ad nauseum talks of the fiscal cliff — the most annoying cliff since Clavin to be honest — and the trending news that Kim and Kanye are expecting.

Goodbye 2012, and take Honey Boo Boo with you.


NFL dazzles

Despite a rocky 2012 for the juggernaut that is the NFL — Bountygate, lawsuits and player safety, and the confounding new rules about challenges and illegal hits — we continue to be amazed by the week-in, week-out dazzling product the league produces.

These are indeed high times for the league. Consider the following:

The Colts' magical ride to the playoffs this year with a cancer-stricken head coach and a rookie quarterback;

The wonderful returns to all-time status of Peyton Manning and Adrian Peterson. Wow. Manning leads Denver to the No. 1 seed in the AFC in his first year back from multiple neck surgeries, and he's only even money on MVP and comeback player of the year because of Peterson, who went for 199 yards Sunday — on the one year anniversary of his surgery to repair his torn ACL — and finished 8 yards shy of the single-season rushing record of 2,105 set in 1984 by Eric Dickerson.

Youth has been well-served at QB this year, with six first- or second-year starting QBs making the playoffs, and that's not counting still-in-their-20-somethings Matt Ryan, Joe Flacco and Aaron Rodgers. The league is flush with young talent at its most important position.

That said, if you are not one of those teams with a certain future at quarterback — and yes, Titans, we're talking to you — then you quickly are falling way behind the upper-echelon teams in the league. Plus, there is not a headlining QB in this draft so the teams in the top 10 — Kansas City (1), Jacksonville (2), Oakland (3), Arizona (7), the Jets (9) and possibly Tennessee (10) — would have to reach to fill the most important position in sports.


Bowling for bowling success

Let's say the bowl season is like an NBA game; the first two quarters are relatively meaningless and the outcome is almost always decided in the latter stages of the fourth quarter. Well, the bowl season has just passed the intermission.

Let's look back at the results of the first half from our Bowling for Bowl Game Success Extra-ganza. There are two three-point games left to be played and all of the four-, five and 10-point games still on the board, which is a good thing since there are a few of us emulating Kent Dorfman's pledge GPA (fat drunk and stupid is no way to go through life son; and that's true, but it can be a fun sidetrack for a few months).

To the results, and in parenthesis are the number of points we have down for you on each wave (one-point games/two-point games/three-point games). And if you have something different, please send it along; we did like 50 of these Sunday morning, so we could have missed a game or six.

Halftime scores

Tiger (3/4/3) 10

Roadrunner (1/4/3) 8

Mrs. 5-at-10 (5/0/3) 8

Deboman (1/8/-3) 6

Joe S. (3/0/3) 6

SportTalk's Quake (3/0/3) 6

ThatIDoKnow (3/0/3) 6

TennFlyer (-3/4/3) 4

Hookshot (-1/0/3) 2

Harold (-1/0/3) 2

June Jones (-1/0/3) 2

WarEagle (-1/0/3) 2

Weena (-1/0/3) 2

Jim T. (-1/0/3) 2

Dools (-1/0/3) 2

Skunk (-1/0/3) 2

Bluto (-1/0/3) 2

Player (3/-4/3) 2

OTWatcher (1/4/-3) 2

Addicted to Chalupa (1/4/-3) 2

Sportsfan (1/4/-3) 2

5-at-10 (3/0/-3) 0.0

StuckinKent (3/0/-3) 0

TommyT (3/0/-3) 0

FE to the C (-1/-2/3) 0

JVFan (-1/-2/3) 0

RollTide (1/0/-3)

Green Acres (1/0/-3) -2

Jay K (1/0/-3) -2

Hustler (1/0/-3) -2

Junkman (1/0/-3) -2

Sir Drinks Alot (1/0/-3) -2 — great board name by the way

Onetimer (1/0/-3) -2

Orangeguy (3/4/-9) -2

Dawg747 (-1/0/-3) -4

BlueOval (-3/-4/3) -4

Jordan Rules (-1/0/-3) -4

Spy (1/-4/-3) -6

StrongWilly (1/-4/-3) -6

McPell (1/-4/-3) -6

DL560429 (-3/-4/-3) -10

Believer (-3/0/-9) -12

Again, please double check your scores and remember that first and last place will get something.

As for the first half of the bowl season, well, it was a little bit non-descript in truth. There were some fun moments — watching Syracuse and West Virginia in the snow and some of the late comebacks — that have been entertaining.

The show, however starts today with three games in which we have a vested interest.

As for our picks against the spread, we're 19-11, including a nice run on totals. That total should be 20-10, considering we had Duke and watched them implode in the final 44 seconds of a tie game. Cincy scored two touchdowns in the final minute — including a 50-plus-yard interception return — to cover the 9.5 in arguably the worst against the spread beat in recent memory.


This and that

— Want to know how crazy and strange 2012 was, here's the kicker: The L.A. Clippers finished December 16-0. The Clippers, who you could make a hard argument as the worst franchise of our lifetime, were perfect in the final month of 2012. There you go.

— There will be a flurry of NFL pink slips handed about today. Andy Reid is reportedly gone. Cleveland is starting anew. The folks in Arizona, Jacksonville, K.C. and elsewhere are likely answering the phone with a certain level of uneasiness. Plus, the intrigue will only grow with the rumblings and rumors of potential college guys coming to the league. More on this tomorrow.

— Congrats to the Mocs for winning the Dr Pepper Classic. And congrats to those who watched Louisville top rival Kentucky in college hoops on Saturday. We've been tough on college basketball, and that's because the product is no where near as enjoyable as it once was (and turn down that loud music as you get off our porch). But Louisville and UK was good action, good theater and well-played. It also shows us how far college hoops has fallen considering that used to be the norm rather than the exception.

— Congrats to Baylor's girls and McCallie for winning the Best of Preps hoops tournament, and many thanks to Jay Price and Kim Smith and the folks at Chattanooga State who were aces in our first year at their venue.


Today's question

Two things are certain at the end of every year — the year-end stuff makes us retrospective and we remember that New Year's Eve is the most overrated night of the year.

So it goes.

So looking back at 2012, we know we were blessed more than we deserve.

We predicted Alabama to be in the BCS title game and for Georgia to be in the SEC title game playing for a spot in the championship. We also predicted the Braves to make the playoffs and the Heat to win it all — they did — and had Matt Barkley winning the Heisman and USC getting to the title game. Uh, not so much.

As for the 5-at-10, well, it feels like it has come into its own and that's in large part because of you folks. Thanks.

What were your personal favorite moments 2012? We know 9er's going to say the Uniblocker's run leading UK to the title. What were your personal least-favorite moments? We know Spy will say a tie between the hiring of Booby Valentine and Georgia Southern missing a litany of field goals in the semifinals.

For us, we'll play the what-if game, and want to hear your responses:

What if Auburn holds its fourth-quarter lead against Clemson in the opener?

What if Tennessee had showed up in the fourth quarter against Florida?

What if the umps hadn't called an infield fly in the eighth inning at Turner Field in the Braves-Cards play-in game?

Discuss. And Happy New Year — be careful out there.

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 ...

Comments do not represent the opinions of the Chattanooga Times Free Press, nor does it review every comment. Profanities, slurs and libelous remarks are prohibited. For more information you can view our Terms & Conditions and/or Ethics policy.
sportsfan said...

Jay - Personal favorite moment for me was attending the Par 3 Tournament at the Masters this year. Least favorite was seeing Jack, Arnie, and Gary on No. 2 (I was sitting behind the green at No. 6) when the tourney was rained out. I highly recommend anyone (even non-golfer types) attend the Masters at least once. For the Friday mailbag (you can delay it a week, if you want to get through the bowl season before changing subjects)...Who are your top 5 golfers to watch at the Masters in 2013? Sergio's got to be one of them...right?

December 31, 2012 at 10:31 a.m.
JonathanMCook said...


Cold and rainy here in Jerry's World (ironic to say the least). Needless to say Tony's goose is BEYOND cooked to the point I am toying with the idea of Galloway after work to start campaign to bring BJ to Dallas. ^^()

In other news from down here, I just bought my ticket to this year's Ranger Fan Fest. I've been wanting to go since last year and it snuck up on me. I'll be sure to have enough fun for the both of us. :P

Did you get the Sports sections I mailed off right before Christmas? I accidently put in the zip code for Hixson (was mailing some stuff to mom on that day as well) so it may have delayed it. I mailed you two more DMN sports sections including a "special" article showing how much the city really "cares" about the "Bowl that Chattanooga built".

I did use the correct zip code for those.

December 31, 2012 at 10:40 a.m.
fechancellor said...

10 Ring, here's another not so much you seem to have misplaced: Oakland to win the AFC West. With the two spot in the draft, the Raiders are in the market for a "shut down" corner, the best defensive line man on the board, or an absolutely nasty and mad skilled middle linebacker.

I'm thinking Mr. McKenzie may trade down. There's too damn many holes to fill, and quarterback is not among them.

What if UT beat Florida? Simple, Coach Dooley would be recruiting prospects right now.

10 Ring, what's your view on the recruits Jones has flipped to Tennessee? When I hear the term "athlete," banded about or the signing of a 180 lb running back, I'm not very comfortable with either.

December 31, 2012 at 10:49 a.m.
orangeguy said...

Plenty of worst moments this year. 1a. The middle innings of that Braves play-in game. Chipper's error, Simmons inexplicable bunt attempt, among other blunders. The infield fly was terrible, but the Braves sudden lack of baseball skills was awful to endure. 1b. Vols getting blasted at Vandy. Never thought I'd see any Vols team implode to that extent vs. the 'doremats.

Best moments: 1a. Dooley being shown the door. 1b. Freddie Freeman's walkoff to send the Braves to the play-in game.

What if's: Maybe Auburn finishes .500 with a win vs. Clemson. And we're talking about how bad the ACC is all season, which would have (and did) happened regardless of that hypothetical outcome. Can't say on the UT/Florida deal. Part of me still believes Dooley would have found a way to goof it up. The Braves complete the comeback, get hot & Chipper gets the proper send off if the infield fly is called correctly.

December 31, 2012 at 11:21 a.m.
JonathanMCook said...

This and That:


Despite the loss of Matt Satterfield (SATTTTTTTTT!!) to the Big 12, I do feel Huesman and the boys will a) win or co-share the SoCon Championship and b) make it to the second round of the playoffs before getting knocked out by an Eastern Illinois or somebody like that.

Vols be much improved in 2013 but will still lose to Georgia, Alabama, South Carolina, Florida, and Oregon*.

*Does not include the number of fans getting nausious from watching bleach orange clash with green and gold and later "sick".

When Steven Fox makes his official debut, two words will be uttered by ALL Moc alumni and fans of the school: "Terrell who?"

Also, the "Power C" will be the "new TW logo" on hats.

What ifs...

If the Mocs had not made soo many mistakes and beaten GSU in regulation and held the line against Wofford, we would have at least made round 2 in the playoffs and this "plateau" effect would not be hovering over the Moc nation.

Pop Culture:

Sorry Jay, TLC wants more Honey Boo-Boo and to add insult to injury, TMZ reported via AOL-Huff Post that the stepdaddy wants to do Redneck Porn. I would consider that beyond the bottom of the barrel but good ol' Dennis Leonard Weyers of Cross Street (from Kevin West's news this morning) just helped raised their status from "Worst Stereotypical Rednecks" to "slighly tolerable". -.-

Of course, I also predict one of the biggest TV events this year to be on cable with the announced funeral of JR on TNT's Dallas. Ironically, within three days of my birthday.

On a sidenote, new episodes of Young Justice beginning this Saturday. :D

December 31, 2012 at 11:26 a.m.
Stewwie said...

That was a great couple of wins for the Mocs this weekend in the Classic. Despite being undermanned and shooting crappy, the Mocs' will to win was too great. Plus, White and Mason are money in the clutch. Last year's team would have lost both of the games this weekend.

Good point about college basketball overall. Something has to be done about all those disrupts the flow of the game way too much. By the way, how come non-TV college basketball games use the same number of media timeouts as TV games? In football, the non-TV games use fewer timeouts. Also, I wish the men's game had a shorter shot clock. Fran Fraschilla said once that he thinks all levels of basketball (high school and up) should use the 24-second clock. Thoughts on that?

One of the best decisions made this year that nobody is talking about is the NBA's new flopping rules. They seem to be accomplishing their intended purpose thus far. The NBA posts clips of the flopping violations on its website (there aren't many...apparently most of the guys cleaned up their act the easy way) and there is no question that the judgments are fair. The most outlandish of them all has to be Tony Parker's was so bad, the ref didn't even call a foul on the play.

Jay, great job in 2012 not only with the 5@10, but the entire Sports section as well. Happy New Year to you and your family.

December 31, 2012 at 11:39 a.m.
jgreeson said...

Sportsfan —

Could not concur more about a trip to Augusta National. It's a magical joint, whether you know a birdie from your birdie finger.


Got the package today — thanks.

And yes, the JR funeral will be the highest rated non-sports Cable TV event ever.

We'll have our prediction in Tuesday's 5-at-10.

FE to the C —

Ah yes, the Raiders' pick. Maybe it was too much cough syrup or maybe we were feeling hte love for the late Al Davis. Either way, big-time stinker pick there.

And if we're in need of a stud duck MLB, we'd take a hard look at Manti T'eo.

Orangeguy —

We kind of nailed the Vols implosion since we said from the middle of July the Fighting Dooleys had the biggest window of any team out there — could be a 10-win team; could be a five-win team — and caught a lot of grief about them being a five-win team. We did predict eight wins (thought they'd be playing in the Music City today) including the bowl win, so we got the record inverted.

Will 2012 be the year that Freddie Freeman made the leap? Dude can mash, although we contend that he'll be a better hitter if/when he drops the "die" off his first name. Fred Freeman sounds like a first baseman that crushes; Freddie Freeman sounds like the bothersome kid up the street from middle school.

Stew —

Timeouts are bad and the pace of play is a problem, but we have a hard time seeing out quickening the pace of kids already playing out of control way too much will improve the quality of the game.

And great call on the no flop rule. We made fun of that one too, and we were way wrong. It greatly improves the quality of the NBA viewing experience.

— 5-at-10

December 31, 2012 at 12:30 p.m.
BIspy4 said...


You know me so well. And I think you're in line for a CIA interrogator spot by posting that picture of Honey Boo Boo signing her own poster for somebody. If that's not a sign of the end of our civilization, I just don't know what is. Looks like Andy Warhol was right after all.

Favorite moments ... McIlroy dusting the field at the PGA was pretty good. I put the Celtics' fold against the Heat after being up 3-2 as being a low moment, almost as low as the Red Sox having whatshisname as manager. Josh Reddick getting a Gold Glove and donning a Spiderman suit to pie somebody after a game was good too. Great kid.

Lots of good stuff from the Olympics, too. I say Usain Bolt in any race is must see TV, even if it ends faster than any of my relationships.

December 31, 2012 at 12:49 p.m.
Astropig said...

RE: Auburn & Clemson...

I don't think that it would have made a difference. Clemson is a decent ACC team and the internal rot at AU meant that they would have been exposed in the SEC West sooner rather than later.It really became apparent in 'aught 12 that Coach Cheez Whiz was what his record said it was going into the year-A slightly below average coach. After Cam Newton decamped to the NFL and Gus Malzahn wisely decided to take a head coaching job, Chizik had to develop players and plot strategy against some really good competition.He was, to put it mildly, out of his depth. Chizik will land somewhere, and of course AU will carry on,but someday we will look back on his time at Auburn as a weird dream-stunning,instant highs and frightening lows.

December 31, 2012 at 1:01 p.m.
jgreeson said...

Spy —

Give the choice by Al Qaeda, would you take waterboarding or a 24-hour Honey Boo Boo marathon with the volume turned up really loud?

And your boy Rory McIlroy has the world by the tail, no?

Astropig —

Fair point about Mean Gene being in over his head. And the facts support that theory — and the stories of the internal strife on the Plains are staggering.

That said, if Auburn had held on against Clemson — and that's a monster if — we could see a young team getting some much needed confidence rather than being shaken, and who knows what happens in the end. More than likely it would have been bad, but not historic bad.

Either way it's done and what's done is done.

And great closing sentence, AP. Well-played indeed.


December 31, 2012 at 1:15 p.m.
JonathanMCook said...

"You know me so well. And I think you're in line for a CIA interrogator spot by posting that picture of Honey Boo Boo signing her own poster for somebody. If that's not a sign of the end of our civilization, I just don't know what is. Looks like Andy Warhol was right after all."

Spy, I could have told you that 17 years ago when I was still reading MAD magazine before they sold out to advertisers.

They did this really funny piece regarding Warhol's famous quote called "The ABCs of Fame for 15". Back then, the topics ranged from the sperm donor for Madonna's Baby to that fighter pilot who was shot down over Bosnia and had to eat bugs (Pre-Fear Factor/Survivor era).

Anyway, the only reason the show is so popular is because Hollywood loves making fun of the South (nothing new there) any chance to do a show that reflects a possible negative imaginable, they are going to go for it because so-called "sophiticated" like watching this train wreck stuff. As well the local yahoos over at the Cummings Highway beer joints back home.

It wouldn't bother me if she was on a normal scripted TV show like back in the day (even a really bad Miller/Boyett production would be a better alternative). Good Grief.

December 31, 2012 at 1:32 p.m.
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