published Thursday, June 19th, 2014

5-at-10: California dreamin', Braves beatdown, Redskins and what would you ask Mark Emmert

From the "Talks too much" studios,

We love L.A. (and Oakland)

That's a shout out to our man Randy Newman, who had a hit with "I Love L.A." Not as big as his "I Hate Short People" and no where as lucrative as his works with Disney and PIxar, but still a catchy tune none the less.

As for the sports world, there are some spinning pieces coming from the city of angels. Consider:

• Clayton Kershaw dropped one of the five best pitching performances of all-time for the Dodgers on Wednesday, throwing a no-hitter with 15 Ks and zero walks. Only an error by Hanley Ramirez stopped it from being a perfect game.

• While further up the coast in Oak-town, the O'Bannon trial really picks up speed today when NCAA bigwig Mark Emmert takes the stand. Our ace columnist Mark Wiedmer penned another great column here, saying that regardless of what you feel about Emmert, who has an overall approval rating somewhere between tax audits and root canals, unless you are fully in support of paying players and the unknown frontier that that change presents, we need Emmert to deliver today. The NCAA is fading and needs a big pick-them-up today from Emmert.

• As ESPN reported here, Shelly Sterling, the estranged wife of Donald Sterling, has filed a court order against The Donald. They will appear in court this morning. Quick question: With all the crud on TV today, we could not get a reality show on the Sterlings? Really? That's disappointing.

————

Braves

And with Wednesday afternoon's stumble against the Phillies, your Atlanta Braves look positively pedestrian.

Atlanta has lost six of its last eight, and after a 17-7 start to the season, the Braves are 36-35 on the season and are tied with Miami, 1.5 back of Washington in the dreadful NL East.

  • photo
    Philadelphia Phillies' Ryan Howard swings on a pitch in the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Atlanta Braves, on Wednesday, June 18, 2014, in Atlanta.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

The questions are clear for a Braves team that still ranks well within the top 10 in ERA and 29th out of 30 MLB teams in batting average.

There also have been cracks in the bullpen and in pressure situations.

Their leading hitter is Justin Upton, with a robust .278 average. Sure Tommy La Stella has been the anti-Uggla, but he does not have enough at-bats to qualify.

And now the Braves sprint into a four-game series in Washington.

That's all the bad news. Here's the real news that must be considered: The season is long and you have to trust it. The ups and downs and the ebbs and flows of the marathon that is a MLB can convince any fan that any team is way better and way worse than they actually are.

Still, right now there are not a lot of reasons to feel very confident about this Braves bunch.

————

Offensive holding

The U.S. patent office has denied the Washington Redskins six trademarks that include the word Redskins on the grounds that it is offensive.

This could be the first step toward forcing Daniel Snyder to change the name. It could be overturned on appeal as it was in 2003.

The actual meaning of this is debatable. The fact of whether Snyder should change the name because it is the decent thing to do seems long since past.

Are we too politically correct in this society? Of course we are. And please, dear Lord, let's get Congress involved in this because, since there are no bigger problems at home or abroad, let's spend the taxpayers dollars on finding a better college football playoff and worrying about the single most successful entertainment BID-ness out there. (Did the sarcasm come through there? We think so.)

And we do not see a whole lot of offensiveness in Braves or Chiefs or any other walk of a culture that could be viewed as a level of distinction, be them Generals, Patriots, Warriors, Gladiators or what have you.

But if you believe Redskins is fine, well, we'll ask you this, if an American Indian walked into the room, would you say, "Hey there Redskin, what's up? Did you read the 5-at-10 today? That blockheaded TFP sports editor's a nut, right?"

(Plus Mike Tyson agrees with us, so we have to be on the right track.)

————

This and that

— The Chattanooga Lookouts appear to have a new potential buyer. TFP all-around ace David Paschall has the details here.

— The US Women's Open starts this morning. That is all.

— As ESPN reports here, college football administrators are studying the suggestions of an early signing period for college football. Here's hoping they figure something out and get this worked out sooner rather than later.

— Alabama landed another super-stud recruit, getting four-star quarterback Blake Burnett, who originally committed to Notre Dame. Alabama has 19 commitments for the 2015 class and 16 of them are ranked in ESPN's top 300. Wow. Nick Saban is the best recruiter ever. Period.

— Moe from the Three Stooges would have turned 117 today if he had not died in 1975. What's our Rushmore of Moes? Also celebrating birthdays today are Bill Cosby's TV wife Phylicia Rashad, Lou Gehrig, Dirk Nowitzki and Ferris Bueller's girlfriend Mia Sara.

————

Today's question(s)

We are still looking for as many mailbag questions as you got.

If you need talking points, here are a couple:

If you were an attorney this morning and got a chance to ask Mark Emmert a question while he is under oath, what would your question be?

There is an 11-year-old girl in the U.S. Women's Open. Would you allow your 11-year-old to compete with the best in the world in their sport of choice?

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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jomo11 said...

Jay- enjoyed radio show discussion on mascots, nicknames, etc . . . ..Help, Im confused about UTK, are they the Vols ? and what is a Vol ? a little 1812 Army man ? or is it a Daniel Boone coonskin cap wearing guy ? And I doubt Daniel Boone ever volunteered for anything, he was a capitalist wasnt he ? Why are they not the UTK army men ? And then the Bluetick Coon hound, what is that ? Why would UTK not be the dogs ? or the Coon Hounds ? And why is his name Smokey ? I thought it was because of the Smoky Mountains, but that is spelled different. So should they be the University of Tennessee Smokies ? And it also is confusing at Lady Vols games when Smokey cross-dresses ( kinda creepy ) Should they be the UTK armymen- Smokey- Coon dogs ? . . . .its a nightmare to try and explain to people from outside the state

June 19, 2014 at 10:10 a.m.
MocTastic said...

I thought it was Voils, as in rhyming with boils, which I remember getting on my bum as a kid, those bright red puss filled sores. Maybe I just associate UTK with such things, but I guess they would be bright orange puss filled sores, not red.

June 19, 2014 at 10:16 a.m.
jgreeson said...

Jomo —

Explaining Vols, as in short for Volunteers is harder than explaining Mocs?

OK.

MT —

Was that nice?

You two guys have picked up your swinging sticks.

Go.

June 19, 2014 at 10:55 a.m.
Stewwie said...

I would not address an American Indian with, "What's up, Redskin?" for the same reason that I would not say "What's up, Whiteskin?" or "What's up, Blackskin?" to a white and black person respectively. It would have less to do with potential offensiveness and more to do with the fact that it would simply be awkward addressing someone by their skin color, especially if you don't know them that well.

That said, the Redskins name should be a non-issue. And to be fair, I would have zero problem with the Lookouts renaming their team the Whiteskins if that's what management wanted. Yes, it would get shot down because of how silly it sounds, but not because it would be offensive. Or how about Crackers? Rednecks? As a white man, I would honestly say that I would not be offended by either of those names as someone's mascot either.

Jomo, when you find out what a Vol is, let me know what a Moc is.

June 19, 2014 at 10:57 a.m.
jomo11 said...

And Jay what about Auburn ? Are they the Eagles or the Tigers ? and what is an "Aubie" ? and how can you name an Eagle "Tiger" ( may she RIP ) ?. . . . . . . and back on soccer and that great 0-0 game, if I wanted to watch somebody struggle to score for 90 minutes I would take my friends to a singles bar . . .

June 19, 2014 at 11:01 a.m.
jgreeson said...

Stewwie —

The term Redskins is a racial slang/slur. Period. We've never heard anyone call anyone positively or negatively "Whiteskin" so we're not sure how that applies. Although if we could get the Lookouts to change their name to the "White Snakes" and get the cheesy 80s band to play the anthem and the 7th-inning stretch that would be cool. (Seriously, what else does White Snake got going on right now any way?)

And there was the old Atlanta Crackers but they changed that because... well you know.

And let's face, we're white males, our opinion about what is and is not offensive does not matter.

Jomo —

Auburn is the Tigers. The rally cry is "War Eagle." Aubie is the name of the mascot, not unlike Scrappy — which is a whole other UTC headscratcher. The Eagle's name actually is Nova, and his flying into the stadium right before kickoff is wicked cool regardless who you are cheering for.

Nice singles bar line.

June 19, 2014 at 11:09 a.m.
MocTastic said...

Auburn has never known what they are, are they the Tigers? War Eagles? I thought they were the "Plainsmen". JG, what happened to the Plainsmen?

Never forget, the Atlanta baseball team was known as the Crackers for many decades until the Braves came down.

Why do we allow the Oakland Raiders and Minnesota Vikings? Both are associated with raping and pillaging villagers. I think women, in particular, women who have been sexually assaulted should be offended. Now those Irish, no, the Fightin' Irish of Notre Dame. Do all Irish fight? Irish people should be offended, that is saying they can't control their emotions.

Where is PETA on the USC and Jacksonville State Gamecocks? Glorifying the use of animals in fighting for betting purposes? USC and JSU should drop that nickname immediately!

Guess this all ends when all sports teams follow the lead of Stanford. Name their teams after a color and adopt a tree or other plant for a mascot.

June 19, 2014 at 11:11 a.m.
MocTastic said...
June 19, 2014 at 11:12 a.m.
jomo11 said...

Scrappy is named , alot like War Eagle, as a rally cry " Those Scrappy Mocs" and also from longtime coach "Scrappy" Moore. . . yes and why isnt Auburn "The Plainsmen" ? good question MT, When I think off "The Plains", i think of the Midwest, not South Alabama, thats more fruit stands and convience stores . .

June 19, 2014 at 11:18 a.m.
golfgal said...

JG- So no love for the ladies this week at #2? I have played it twice and must say its probably the hardest course I have played to date. Hopefully Local gal Brooke P has a good showing. The hubs told me you were spotted at The Honors this week, just curious what did you shoot and where would you rank your experience there? (It's in my top 5).

GG

June 19, 2014 at 11:19 a.m.
fechancellor said...

LA and Oak-town in the same title. I like it, I like it a lot.

Yes, I'd let my 11 year old compete. I'd do the same if she were in movies or on TV, of course.

Let's end the Redskins controversy for good, shall we? Change the logo to a peanut with a head dress and keep the name.

Tennessee is "Big Orange Country!"

June 19, 2014 at 11:24 a.m.
jgreeson said...

Golfgal —

We broke 80 using the community drive and then play your own ball in that would have been several shots worse of course (had one terrible tee shot and used some teammates' shots on par 3s).

But we hit it really good and putted pretty decent especially how fast the greens were playing. Made three birdies and no doubles, so there's that.

We'll rank our five in Friday's mailbag. Deal?

And there is much love and respect for the women at Pinehurst. In fact we have an eye peeled on Brooke and the preteen. Will be interesting to see how they handle the set-up — and color us much shades of jealous about playing PH No. 2. That is cool.

Jomo —

AU was the Plainsmen for a long time, but the Plainswomen felt they were being left out and the in the Nickname Amnesty Act of 1931, Congress forced Auburn to go with Tigers. PETA appealed and millions were spent in appeals that lasted decades. Then Mike Vick happened and everyone forgot about it.

War Legal.

(Thank you. Thank you.)

June 19, 2014 at 11:32 a.m.
jomo11 said...

fechancellor- now "Big Orange Country", so what about Vols-Smokies-Coon dogs-armymen-Daniel Boones-Big Orange-Rocky top . . . thats very confusing

June 19, 2014 at 11:35 a.m.
MocTastic said...

If you want to talk about mascots that dont' make any sense. I have been living in Alabama since 1988 and I have yet to see any elephants out roaming about. Yet, in Tuscaloosa......

Auburn could have gone with the Auburn Plainspeople :)

and don't bring up the stealing of Rocky Top by Knoxville....

For those not aware or paying attention, the use of Moccasins for UC/UTC comes from Moccasin Bend. If you stand on Lookout Mtn and look down Moccasin Bend looks like a foot. The Creek and/or Cherokees had noted that and used a word describing the land as such. So, that is the origin of the useage of Native Americans for UC mascots (although the water moccasin snake had a short period of useage in the 1920s). Then in 1997 one person complained to the Chancellor and he bowed to PC and decided to change the name. Luckily they could both adopt the past and be PC. By shortening the name to just Mocs they could drop the Native American issue and adopt the use of the state bird, the Mockingbird as a mascot. Plus as Jomo11 said the use of "Scrappy" comes from Scrappy Moore and was utilized informally to describe the Mocs for decades before the change.

June 19, 2014 at 11:36 a.m.
Stewwie said...

Great point, MT. Maybe all professional sports teams should simply start over and pick new mascots to be absolutely sure that they offend no people whatsoever. Turn it into a draft. We'll even let Obama officiate it...it's not like he has 17 trillion other things to worry about anyway.

[And let's face, we're white males, our opinion about what is and is not offensive does not matter.]

Interestingly, it appears that a higher percentage of non-Indians are offended by the Redskins name than the actual Indians. So if the white man's opinion didn't matter, wouldn't this issue just go away? But leave it to guys like Harry Reid to try to make a mountain out of a molehill. Check out this article:

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/jun/18/curl-is-the-term-redskins-really-offensive/?utm_source=RSS_Feed&utm_medium=RSS

June 19, 2014 at 11:51 a.m.
BIspy4 said...

While I think Dan Snyder should consider changing the name of his franchise, it seems a bit of a government overreach to strip away their trademark rights. And I'll stop with any political philosophy right there.

Because boy do the Braves need to do something with Struggla. Having a 24-man roster, which in essence it is if you are not playing Struggla at all, is beyond counter productive. No, Pastornicky is not the answer. Neither is Pena, though his value is increased, albeit marginally, because of his ability to play more than position. At this point, the Braves are going to most assuredly have to eat most if not all of Struggla's contract. But they have to do something with that roster spot, even if it means carrying one extra arm in the bullpen, which has been overextended.

And the ladies (Hey, Ladies! A little Beasties. Just for you, 5) get Pinehurst for their U.S. Open. Maybe they should have waited another week to let the divots in the fairway heal up first. Because if it looked bad last week, what will it look like this week?

June 19, 2014 at 12:11 p.m.
MocTastic said...

Article online the other day suggested the Braves were close to promoting Christian Bettencourt and putting him behind the plate, Gattis to left, J Up to right and Jay Hey to center. Bettencourt would be an upgrade behind the plate defensively and he is batting around .300 in AAA. Then you would have BJ Up and Struggla both eating two roster spots and tens of millions of dollars, but they are "sunken costs" and do you want to win or not?

June 19, 2014 at 12:15 p.m.
Stewwie said...

MT, the Mocs' name made sense until 1997. It was clearly short for Moccasins. Now the mascot is a mockingbird, but you never hear the teams called that. It's just "Mocs". Throw in the train references and there's even more confusion. SMH. UTC could do better. Or is it Chattanooga? There's an orange "UT" on school letterhead, but the team uniforms only say "Chattanooga". SMH again.

June 19, 2014 at 1:29 p.m.
MocTastic said...

Stewwie, the teams were called the "Mocs" quite often before the name change while officially being the Moccasins. The school branding people did realize they were getting some identity issues and if you notice, the train stuff has been really de-emphasized from the logos, if not completely gone. The desire has been to brand the school's teams first as "Chattanooga", feeling that when you have an "at" such as University of Tennessee at Chattanooga you become one of those "directional" schools that are quite often made fun of. I think most alumni, especially older alumni would vote in a landslide to officially rename the school back to University of Chattanooga while remaining in the UT system. This is theorectically doable per conversations I have had with a past UTC Chancellor. It would take an organized effort by a group of alumni to champion the cause.

The orange UT you mention is forced upon them by the powers that be in Knoxville and has been noticed by people in Chattanooga. They can't complain too much or too loudly in fear of job retribution. It is orange due to the UT system trying to brand the system as a whole.

June 19, 2014 at 1:47 p.m.
jomo11 said...

Stewwie, you seem a little sensitive about your UTK Smokies-Vols-armymen-Daniel Boones-Rocky Tops-Coon Dogs ?. . . . .so please when UTK decides if they are Vols or Coon Dogs or Army men or Daniel Boones, you might want to hold off on shaking your head about other schools nicknames and mascots. . . .and please stop calling UTK a BCS school when they havent been to a BCS Bowl game in a decade

June 19, 2014 at 2:05 p.m.
WilliamRscott said...

Jay-G: for the mailbag...is Satan [oops] the best recruiter ever or has he assembled a staff of the best of the best recruiters?

I am not offended when I am called a redneck...in fact, I am proud of it...just part of who I am.

Scrappy's...has to be 1 of the best bars in Chatty beer-joint history. Located in the NE corner of campus, it was such a good place the university bought the building and tore it down. Now that is saying something...

Billy-In-Brainerd

June 19, 2014 at 2:18 p.m.
MocTastic said...

Wondering who is in the lead in this year's Phil Fulmer Cup standings? For those not aware, the Phil Fulmer Cup is awarded to the school whose athletes have the most points in a year assigned by a ranking system from severity of their crime. All schools can compete for it, but only UTK can claim it is named after one of their coaches!

June 19, 2014 at 2:28 p.m.
fechancellor said...

Jomo,

Tennessee is the Volunteer State first noted for the prominat role volunteering for Americas Wars to at least the end of the 19th Century.

The blue tick hound Smokey was chosen in 1953 as Mascot. Anyone who can't see a connection between Tennessee and coon dogs probably can't see much else, either. Personally, I miss the Tennessee Walking Horse.

The Rifleman, don't be an ijit. That's an identifier with Tennessee Mountain culture and Davy Crockett. The football team also is identified as the Volunteer Army. Works on many levels including a send up to General Neyland.

We're Rocky Top because someone at the University was smart enough to latch on to the song.

Finally, to answer all your questions, all these tie ins and more make piles of money for the University.

June 19, 2014 at 2:28 p.m.
MocTastic said...

We're Rocky Top because someone at the University was smart enough to latch on to the song.

not latch, steal.....

And to be exact, the "volunteers" comes from the War of 1812. Andrew Jackson called for volunteers and many more than needed showed up from all over the state.

Lets throw another un PC nickname out there. The UNLV Runnin' Rebels. The use of Rebels has been banned in most places, how can they keep using it? It is clearly a symbol of the Confederacy per their own webite and yet the NCAA alows this????

http://www.unlvrebels.com/trads/unlv-trads-mascot.html

June 19, 2014 at 2:31 p.m.
jomo11 said...

fechancellor- so now we have to add the Walking Horse ? My gosh, so now its the UTK Coon dogs-Vols-Walking Horses-RockyTops ( albeit stolen)-Smokies-Big Orange Country-Davy Crocketts ? . . . speaking of Davy Crockett, is what happened to him at the Alamo worse than what will happen when UTK goes to Oklahoma this year ?

June 19, 2014 at 2:40 p.m.
fechancellor said...

MocTastic,

You should look into how many how fast volunteered for the Mexican War and in the case of the Civil War on both sides.

Stealing, well, if the Vols didn't pick up, who the hell would be venerating the Andersons today?

June 19, 2014 at 2:47 p.m.
fechancellor said...

Jomo,

At least Crockett could return fire.

June 19, 2014 at 2:49 p.m.
MocTastic said...

Fec, not saying Tennessee people didn't volunteer for all wars, just that term is historically attributed to the War of 1812.

June 19, 2014 at 2:54 p.m.
fechancellor said...

Moc,

Wiki says 1812. Sources more in tune with Tennessee history say the origin is the Mexican War, misconception or not, that's the first word I ever heard on the subject. Not to sell out Tennessee Militia at New Orleans, in the Indian Wars from Virginia, to Tennessee to Alabama to Georgia to Florida including the Alamo and Kings Mountain.

June 19, 2014 at 3:05 p.m.
MocTastic said...

Seems to be as many answers to the question of the origin of Volunteers as there are wars....I was taught the 1812 version in American history class, back in 70s when it was closer to when it actually happened. :)

Seems like UTK would want a nickname more attributable to their city, maybe the UTK SunSpheres?

June 19, 2014 at 3:13 p.m.
Stewwie said...

Jomo,

In case you never noticed, I am a UTC fan and also an alumnus. I am not a Vols fan at all, but I'm also not a hater. Same for the rest of the SEC...I'm not partial to any team but also don't dislike any team either. Just a general fan overall outside the Southern Conference. My point earlier is that both the Vols and Mocs have somewhat confusing nicknames/mascots. Just making a fair observation.

MT,

Good point about the train references fading away. A name change back to UC would be approved while also staying in the UT-system? Then I'm shocked it hasn't already happened. Agreed with you that there'd be plenty of interest...especially from those still around who attended there while it was still UC.

June 19, 2014 at 3:52 p.m.
jomo11 said...

Stewwie- Im just messing around, little trash talk on a slow day

June 19, 2014 at 3:55 p.m.
MocTastic said...

Stewwie, I was told directly by a former Chancellor that a name change could happen. As I said, would take a concentrated effort by a group of alumni. I have never bought a class ring, I would if I could get a UC ring.

June 19, 2014 at 4:06 p.m.
patrickwadesr said...

Jay, Still Love all all the information !!! POPPY

June 21, 2014 at 2:29 p.m.
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