Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Malachi's Sports 101

Malachi-Sports Blogger
I am Malachi and this is Sports 101! I will be educating you about sports and issues surrounding players and teams that we either love or hate. To the sports world, where would we be without sports? We probably would be a third world country living as savages!

Quarterback Matt McGloin making a pass - ESPN Photo
Raiders Win on the Road

Oakland Raider's quarterback Matt McGloin his first career start, defeating the downward spiraling Houston Texans 28-23. McGloin, a free agent walk on started in the place of injured quarterback Terrell Pryor, went 18-32 for 197 yards and three touchdowns. He got the ball out of his hands quickly and read through his progressions well. A quarterback controversy could be on the horizon in Oakland if McGloin has another good game. Wide Receiver Rod Streater caught five receptions for 84 yards and a touchdown.
Running back Rashad Jennings ran 22 times for 150 yards. The Raiders defense only gave up 155 passing yards and created two turnovers.

Official Brutality!

Ahmad Brooks and Drew Brees
John David Mercer/USA TODAY
The San Francisco 49ers lost a heart breaker to the New Orleans Saints 23-20 after a questionable call by the league officials. With 3:12 left in the fourth quarter, outside linebacker Ahmad Brooks viciously sacked Saints' quarterback Drew Brees, causing a fumble which was recovered by linebacker Patrick Willis. Brooks game changing play was nullified by penalty because the game official determined the sack was a roughing the quarterback penalty. Brooks right arm was beneath the neck area as he slammed Brees to the turf, causing his chin to bleed. As vicious as the hit looked the league got the call wrong, placing the 49ers in a tie for the last wild card spot.

Brooks commented, "I was just mad because that was a big play in the game. We lost, and that's probably the reason why."

49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick threw for 127 yards, two touchdowns and was sacked three times. They continue to struggle to create separation at the receiver position as teams continue to load the box with extra defenders to stop running back Frank Gore. They are desperately awaiting the return of wide receiver Michael Crabtree, who was Kaepernick's favorite target last season. It is now clear that if the Niners make the playoff, they will make it as a wild card team.

NBA News and Notes:
Stephen Curry

The Golden State Warriors are 8th in the league in points per game at 104.3 and 5th in the league in points allowed at 96.3. Point guard Stephen Curry sustained a concussion against the Utah Jazz. He is averaging 19.9 points, 8.7 assists, 3.7 rebounds and 1.7 steals per game this season. 

Lakers' guard Kobe Bryant practiced with the team and is in the final stage of his recovery from a ruptured Achilles tendon. He will most likely play in Novemember.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Bullying in the NFL

Image courtesy of Sports Illustrated
Arguably, the biggest NFL story of the year has been the saga involving Miami Dolphins offensive tackle Jonathan Martin.  According to reports, Martin has endured daily bullying by Dolphins teammates (most prominently Richie Incognito) for quite some time.  A scathing VoiceMail left for Martin, where Incognito uses the N-Word and inappropriate threatening language, was recently released, stirring up controversy and debate over harassment and hazing in pro sports.  As the story as gained steam, former teammates of Incognito note that he seemed to have mental stability issues.

Incognito has been suspended indefinitely.  Dolphins owner Stephen Ross has said he is conducting an internal investigation to get to the bottom of the matter. 

Neither the Dolphins nor the NFL on the whole are looking good after this scenario.  While it was the right thing to do to suspend Incognito, the trouble likely lies beyond one person.  Martin, described as shy, seems to have been targeted for not being hypermasculine enough.  Figures like Hall of Famer Mike Ditka and the Dolphins' own General Manager Jeff Ireland urged that Martin should have simply fought back physically.  Former Dolphin Ricky Williams has criticized Martin for bringing the situation out in the open and not settling it internally.  There's been a lot of finger pointing at Jonathan Martin for exposing an issue many would prefer to keep in the dark.  Martin, according to a source, knows he cannot come back to the Dolphins and likely won't play for this football season.  There's even doubt he will ever play in the NFL again. 

It is alleged that Incognito used racial slurs openly in the locker room.  It seems to be commonplace in the professional sports world to not check or correct irresponsible behavior as long as said parties are "playing well."  After hearing the VoiceMail and reading a rundown of the situation in general, how can anyone defend the actions of Incognito, as well as his teammates and coaching staff (who let this behavior persist)?  Incognito, in a recent interview with Jay Glazer, maintains he was just kidding and that threats to kill and humiliate are just part of NFL culture.  It's a laughable and insulting defense.  The problem lies in the Dolphins locker room, not Jonathan Martin.  The question is whether what's transpired in Miami is an anomaly or the norm. 

Slate: Dolphins Side With Bully

CBS Sports

NY Daily News

Written by Toni