And the (Sports) Oscar goes to…

first_imgSo Sunday was the Oscars. I’m not much of a movie buff myself — I finished dead last in the Herald’s Oscar pool, correctly guessing only two of six winners — but it was on in the office so I watched it. It was actually quite educational for me, too. I learned from City Editor Courtney Johnson that it is absolutely unacceptable to wear a leopard print dress to an awards show, “Little Miss Sunshine” is not, in fact, a Beach Boys song, and I have absolutely nothing in common with the people who pick these movies except for the fact we are both breathing.Me, I could care less about the stinkin’ Oscars. The fact that neither “Ricky Bobby” nor “Beerfest” received so much as a nomination is proof the whole thing is a sham. How whoever wrote “Beerfest” didn’t win one for that scene where Landfill comes back to life is beyond me. When you think back years from now on the movies of 2006, what will you remember that year for — the patriotic epic which gave us the “They’re not that drunk” chant and a glorified, super-secret beer drinking contest dominated by the good ‘ole United States (no real surprise there, what don’t we dominate the rest of the world in?) or some movie by a foreign dude named Alejandro Gonzalez? Not to mention “Borat.” You’re telling me there were five other movies, let alone five other documentaries, better than “Borat?” I’m not buying it for one second. I never saw “Volver” or “The Queen,” and I don’t feel like I’ve really missed all that much. What’s that? I’m not cultured? So be it. Who cares about sound mixing or art direction anyway?So, without further ado, I present to you the 2007 Sports Oscars. No montages (basically because we couldn’t secure funding) and guaranteed no political statements. Winners need not thank the Academy or be present to win. Best Supporting ActorWinner: Cincinnati District AttorneyAlso Considered: Tim Tebow, Devin Hester, Yadier MolinaThere were plenty of instances during this past season where the Bengals could have swerved off course. With nine arrests on the season, the Cincy DA could have easily locked up a terrible season for the Bungles. Instead, he took one for the team and looked the other way, allowing the players to avoid missing any games per the law. The team repaid him by picking up fewer wins (eight) than arrests. That’s unselfishness. I mean, it’s not like the crimes were anything major, like drunken driving or carrying unregistered handguns in a nightclub. Oh, they were? Never mind, then. Is Mr. Tebow here? Best ScreenplayWinner: George MasonAlso Considered: Michigan-Ohio State (1 vs. 2 game), New Orleans Saints, Boise State The NCAA tournament is known for its Cinderella stories. So what made George Mason’s improbable tournament run the Best Screenplay of 2006? This Cinderella didn’t stop dancing in the Sweet-16, the tournament’s midnight. After making it past a first-round game against Michigan State without suspended guard Tony Skinn, the Patriots continued right on winning, defeating four of the previous seven national champions in Michigan State, North Carolina, Wichita State and Connecticut on their way to the Final Four. In doing so, their tournament games became must-watch events and left people saying “screw you” to their brackets and rooting for Cinderella to keep bustin’ some moves. Best DirectorWinner: Jim LarranagaAlso Considered: Tony Dungy, Avery JohnsonCoaches, whether it’s fair or not, are evaluated by how their teams do in postseason play. Knowing this, one could understand if a coach excused some questionable behavior in the interest of helping his team’s chances of postseason success. Larranaga took the high road, though, personally suspending Skinn for one game after Skinn took a cheap shot below the belt to a Hofstra player in the CAA conference tournament. The Patriots overcame the suspension and made their magical run, and in doing so, Larranaga proved winning can be done the right way.Worst ActorWinner (or Loser, if you want): Rex GrossmanAlso Considered: noneAlright, I won’t even try to pretend this isn’t just a gratuitous anti-Bears shot. Let’s just move on…Lifetime AchievementWinner: Bobby KnightDick Vitale won’t stop blabbing about how Indiana should rename Assembly Hall in honor of Knight. Maybe this will appease him. In all seriousness though, Knight deserves this (as if this award means anything to anyone). He passed Dean Smith for the most wins all-time in college basketball and has been probably the most influential coach of the last 30 years — Knight’s motion offense served as a template for Bo Ryan’s swing — despite all the controversy that seems to follow him. Best DuoWinner: Rick Majerus and foodAlso Considered: Shaq and Dwyane Wade, Tim Hardaway and John AmaechiChemistry is important in any working relationship, and the best duos get along off the playing field as well. Controversy struck the early favorites — Hardaway and Amaechi — when Hardaway said he hated Amaechi like he hated broccoli or a chef at a restaurant. That swung momentum toward an outraged Majerus and distressed food. Really, it is only (tightly) fitting that Majerus and food win this award, as the hefty color commentator often makes longing references to food during his telecasts and the two are quite literally joined at the hip.Best ActorWinner: LaDainian TomlinsonAlso Considered: Tiger Woods, Roger Federer, Dwyane Wade, Steve NashShaun Alexander set the bar for touchdowns in a single season two years ago. LDT saw the bar, looked at Alexander and said, “You call that a record?” Tomlinson broke the record in week 14 and spent the final three games of the season adding to it. When it came time for the league MVP to be announced, there was really no suspense. Tomlinson won with 88 percent of the vote. Besides that, Tomlinson also earned the 2006 Walter Payton Man of the Year award for his contributions to his community off the field.And finally…Best PictureWinner: UCLA vs. Gonzaga (Sweet 16)Also Considered: Heat vs. Mavericks (NBA Finals game 3), Connecticut vs. George Mason (Elite 8), Oklahoma vs. Boise State (Fiesta Bowl) and Cardinals vs. Mets (NLCS game 7)Sure it might not have been a championship game, but “The Morrison Game” was still an absolute classic. Behind the nation’s leading scorer, Adam Morrison, Gonzaga built a big lead in the first half and led by double digits for most of the game. UCLA mounted a comeback late and took the lead on a steal and layup inside of 10 seconds left. The lasting image of this game is of Morrison sprawled out at mid-court sobbing in defeat. Big bonus points to this game for Gus Johnson’s announcing.Ben is a sophomore majoring in political science. Feel like he made an egregious omission? Agree that “Borat” got screwed? 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Clippers know nothing less than complete effort will do against Golden State Warriors

first_imgThe Clippers on Monday night came up with their best overall effort of the young season, defeating the Utah Jazz 107-101 at Staples Center. They played three good quarters of basketball, but a rather poor third quarter resulted in them giving up all of a 15-point lead before they regrouped. It’s one thing to defeat the Utah Jazz (1-3) under those circumstances. The Golden State Warriors (3-0) are another thing altogether, and the Clippers (3-1) know that.“Against really good teams like Golden State, and other teams like them, you cannot have a bad quarter or a bad half of a quarter,” said Clippers power forward Blake Griffin, whose team plays at Golden State on Wednesday night at 7:30 p.m. (Prime Ticket, ESPN). “We need to do a really good job of taking care of the ball.“When we get a lead, we need to maintain that lead. We need to keep doing things that make us successful and follow our game plan, and I think we will be all right.” “If we keep doing what we are doing, they are always going to feel like they can get back in the game.”Rivers likes BullockReserve guard/small forward Reggie Bullock did not play at all in the first three games of the season. But he played 18 terrific minutes on Monday, and he came through in a big way. Bullock scored 12 points — all on 3-point baskets. Bullock had two 3-pointers in the first half and two in the second.His third came at the end of the third quarter, and it gave the Clippers a 73-70 lead. That was huge because that was the quarter in which the Clippers lost all of a 15-point lead.Bullock hit his final 3-pointer early in the fourth quarter, and it gave the Clippers a 78-77 lead.Coach Doc Rivers liked what he saw.“He got lost a couple of times defensively,” Rivers said. “Unfortunately, the day you play him he has to play against (Gordon) Hayward, who I’ve had a man-crush on for two years; the kid’s amazing.“But Reggie was great. He did what he does. He made shots. So that was good for us. It was great for his confidence and I think that’ll help us going forward.”Indeed, Bullock’s self-assurance took a positive turn.“It was good, it was a confidence-builder,” he said.Scouting the WarriorsShooting guard Klay Thompson is off to a fine start for Golden State, averaging 29.7 points through three games. Point guard Steph Curry is averaging 25.3 points, seven assists and 6.7 rebounds. Post Andrew Bogut, who was injured during last season’s first round of the playoffs against the Clippers and did not play, is leading the team with a 9.0 rebounding average.Golden State has defeated Sacramento (95-77), the Lakers (127-104) and Portland (95-90). Point guard Chris Paul, who had a triple-double Monday, liked what his team did against Utah. But he, too, knows more advancement is necessary.“We have to get better,” Paul said. “It caught up with us (Sunday in a loss to Sacramento), so we have to improve because the Western Conference is good and we are going into a tough environment on Wednesday. We have to be ready.”Mean with a leadPaul said that when the Clippers get a lead, they need to have an attitude. A nasty one.“We cannot relax,” Paul said. “We have to get that killer mentality, and we have to put teams away. Teams are way too good in this league, especially now, and they are not going to give up.center_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more