Thursday, August 17, 2017

Lonzo Ball and BBB might just be worth $1 Billion

I have the best idea to change the footwear industry and increase athlete endorsement dollars forever… and it was inspired by Lonzo Ball.  Currently, an NBA player signs a contract with one shoe company and exclusively represents that company through the life of the contract. This is the way things are and no one has dared to challenge that until LaVar Ball came around with Big Baller Brand.
I think we all assumed that Lonzo Ball would wear BBB shoes every game and that would be the end of the story. Not so fast, my friend. During the NBA Summer League, Lonzo wore his own BBB shoes, Nikes, UnderArmour, and Adidas. When he was questioned about wearing other brands besides his own Lonzo said, “At BBB, you can play in what you want.”
This got me thinking...
Imagine if Lonzo (and any other unsigned athlete) was an endorsement mercenary. An athlete beholden to no single company but available to all. What if Lonzo literally sold his feet to the highest bidder for all 82 games? If he plays well, the opportunities are endless. I’ve read that shoe companies are offering him in the neighborhood of $5M per season now. That breaks down to around $61,000 per game. I believe he could average more than that over the course of a season being a mercenary. Why wouldn’t a shoe company pay $50-75k per night to get additional eyeballs on its new shoe? Imagine what Lonzo could get for a primetime national TV game. Besides LeBron, no NBA player is talked about more and watched than Lonzo Ball. 
The Ball family is one of the top three most discussed topics in U.S. sports every week. The entire Ball family has become polarizing figures due to their outstanding play and their fathers’ showmanship. Approximately 70,000 people watched the youngest Ball play an AAU basketball game on Facebook Live. Some fans watch Lonzo and the Ball family to see them fail and some watch to see them succeed. Either way, eyeballs are glued to everything named Ball.
It’s time for athletes to break the mold. Think outside the box. It’s simple, sitting right at their fingertips and to my knowledge no one has mentioned this before I did here:
All commissions on my fantastic idea are expected. My email is on my Twitter Bio.
All commissions on my fantastic idea are expected. My email is on my Twitter Bio.

Monday, July 31, 2017

College Football’s 5 Most Underrated Teams of 2017

The definition of underrate is “to rate or evaluate too low; underestimate.” Here is the 5 college football teams most underestimated for the 2017 season.

Honorable Mention. UCLA- If you have a quarterback you have a chance. If the golden boy Josh Rosen has a good season the Bruins will have a shot to win the Pac-12.

5. Miami- It feels like forever since Miami was good. They fooled you guys in the beginning of last season, but I knew better. This year the Hurricanes return seven starters on a defense that only gave up 18.5 ppg in 2016. Questions about their quarterback have kept expectations low, but their offensive line should be very good. If Miami can get a decent QB out of junior Malik Rosier, true freshmen N’Kosi Perry, Cade Weldon and sophomore Evan Shirreffs, they have a legit shot to win the ACC.

4. NC State- Do not underestimate the quality of this team that finished 7-6 last year. The Wolfpack don’t have the horses to make a run at the ACC Atlantic division, but they have an underrated coach in Dave Doeren. NC State is good enough to hand FSU, Louisville, or Clemson a loss. Last year, the Wolfpack gifted Clemson an overtime victory, and it took a 4th quarter comeback by Florida St to win. Coach Doreen has a veteran offensive line to protect junior QB Ryan Finley. This combo will give the Wolfpack a shot to win every week vs. this tough schedule. A 9-3 finish to the regular season IS possible and would be a huge success, but reality is more around 7-5.

3. Oregon- I can already hear you guys now. Such a homer, of course he says Oregon is underrated. Well, they are. No one has any expectations for the Ducks winning the Pac-12 north after finishing a disaster of a season last year 4-8. The Ducks cleaned house and brought in head coach Willie Taggert from South Florida. Oregon has plenty of talent left on the roster offensively. Justin Herbert showed flashes last year as a true freshman and should have a successful sophomore campaign. Expect to see the Royce Freeman of old running the football. The same cannot be said defensively. The Ducks should be a 9-win team and Pac-12 north champs if they can play a nominal amount of defense this season.

2. Penn St- At the end of the regular season last year, didn’t you feel like Penn St was one of the 4 best teams in the country? I did. This team is good, really good. So how could the Nittany Lions team be underrated? I got two names, Ohio St. and Michigan. It feels like James Franklin is the forgotten man behind Urban Meyer and the Khaki man Jim Harbaugh. Penn St has two of the most exciting players in college football. Their quarterback Trace McSorley reminds me of Johnny Manziel. Defenses can’t tackle RB Saquon Barkley in a phone booth. I am bullish on the scrappy Nittany Lions this year to win the B1G title.

P.S. I hate their non-conference schedule (Akron, Pitt, and Georgia St)!!!

1. Oklahoma St- How bout them COWBOYS! Ok St will come into this season ranking outside of the Top 10, but expect them to finish in the college football playoff. The combination of a light non-conference schedule and playing Baylor, TCU, and Oklahoma at home makes for a perfect recipe for 12-0 or 11-1 regular season. Mason Rudolph will be throwing to the #1 receiving corps in the nation. James Washington, Jalen McCleskey, Marcell Ateman, and Tyron Johnson are all studs. Add in running back Justice Hill and it may take a small army to slow Ok St down offensively. The only thing that can derail the Cowboys is Mike Gundy’s bad luck mullet.

Friday, July 28, 2017

College Football: 5 Teams Headed for Disappointment

Yesterday’s list featured the 5 most overrated teams in College football this season. This list is different. These are the 5 teams most likely to disappoint their fan base. The unique part about this list is that some of these schools have National Championship caliber teams and some are teams looking to bounce back from a down year. These teams all have the same thing in common. At the end of the year they will be one play, one penalty, one injury, one dropped pass, or one missed field goal away from football fan euphoria.

5. Oklahoma- Not your fault your coach Bob Stoops retired abruptly. At least he waited until after the recruiting class was signed. Lincoln Riley was the offensive coordinator of the high-powered Sooners offense, now he’s the head ball coach. Coming off of 3 straight BIG XII titles expectations are high in Norman. The signal calling magician with the heart of a lion, Baker Mayfield is back. The offense will be fine despite losing so many playmakers to the NFL (Westbrook, Perine, Mixon). The defense on the other hand will have its hands full with BIG XII offenses and Ohio State in the shoe. Last year the Sooners gave up over 28ppg. Again, the defense will stand between the Sooners having a really good season and being real National Championship contenders.

Vegas win total: 9.5 (Over -140, Under +110)

4. Notre Dame- This is an exciting schedule for college football fans everywhere! Take note SEC, ACC, Pac-12, B1G, and Big XII, 11 Bowl teams and Michigan St on the schedule. That was the good news, now time for the bad news. The Irish are going to massively disappoint this season. In 2016, ND finished 4-8 with 4 soul-crushing defeats by 3 points or less. When I look at the schedule I cannot figure a way they get to 10 wins. Freshman QB Brandon Wimbush was highly coming out of high school, but is still inexperienced. Mike McGlinchey and Quenton Nelson are All-America candidates on an offensive line that returns four starters. While they Irish may be able to protect their QB, the question is can they stop an opponents offense. Last year the Notre Dame defense was almost as painful to watch as my Ducks. The Irish will try really hard this year, and fight hard. Anything over 7 wins should will be a victory.

Vegas win total: 7.5 (Over -130, Under EVEN)

3. Georgia- Even with Kirby Smart instead of Mark Richt as the coach, Georgia is gonna be Georgia. The Bulldogs fan base is excited and energized. Nick Chubb and Sony Michel will share the backfield again. Jacob Eason has the potential to be a good quarterback. The defense returns 11 starters, linebackers are the best unit on the team, and the secondary has 3 seniors.  Georgia’s schedule is super light, 3 very winnable non-conference games, and SEC schedule without Bama or LSU. What could possibly go wrong? I’m not sure, however, I am sure that the Bulldogs will find a way to get 9 wins out of what should be 11.

Vegas win total: 8.5 (Over -130, Under EVEN)

2. USC- The Trojans have a shot at the national championship with sophomore Sam Darnold at QB. He is the preseason favorite for the Heisman and favored to be the #1 pick in the 2018 NFL draft. The Trojans also have Ronald Jones at RB, who might be the most dangerous back in college football. So what could go wrong? A lot. Try having 12 straight games without a bye week, 11 of which are against Power 5 opponents. The one non Power 5 school that USC plays is Western Michigan. They won 13 games last season. Needless to say, a simple injury that a bye week could usually fix might derail the Trojans National Championship hopes. This is a really good team. One way or another head coach Clay Helton will answer all questions about if he the guy to lead the Trojans long term.

Vegas win total: 9.5 (Over -180, Under +150)

1. Florida State- I believe this team is a National Championship caliber squad if they can protect their sophomore stud QB Deondre Francois for change. The ACC was the toughest conference in college football last season. If that trend repeats, one loss in tough games against Clemson, Louisville, NCST could cost them a chance to play in the ACC title game and likely mean no College Football Playoff bid. The Seminoles defense will be stout with the nations best defender, Derwin James, back in the fold. Oh... I almost forgot about that game against Alabama week 1. And Miami... And Florida. Good luck Seminoles fans. You are going to need it. The good news is that (depending how everyone else shakes out) you might be able to fade 2 losses and make the CFP top 4. At the end of the day, this feel like another 1 play away season.

Vegas win total: 9.5 (Over -150, Under +120)

How many wins are you giving each team? Which team do you think is most likely to disappoint in 2017?

Thursday, July 27, 2017

5 Most Overrated Teams in College Football

College football season is only a few weeks away. We are already beginning to be flooded with preseason rankings. Here are the teams that will prove themselves overrated this college football season:

Honorable Mention- Louisville. Lamar Jackson fell apart at the end of the season leaving Heisman voters wishing they could get their votes back. He’s a good kid, elite athlete, but he is not elite enough of a passer to lead this team to an ACC title. The Cardinals will likely get to 10 wins due to a non-conference schedule that would make Washington blush.

5. LSU- Please stop trying to sell me on LSU being able to unseat Bama for the SEC West crown. Not happening. Not even if their quarterback Jalen Hurts gets hurt. The Tigers have to get out of the “run and punt” style of offense they had under Les Miles and step in at least a 2010 offense.

In my mind I like the idea Ed Orgeron was hired as head coach. But if I’m judging from his last time he was a head coach without the interim tag (Ole Miss), I realize things could go badly. Derrius Guice might be the nation’s best running back. And as usual the Tigers are stacked with talent on defense with Arden Key (LB) and Donte Jackson (CB) leading the way. Unfortunately, the SEC is Alabama, and everybody else and LSU is an everybody else.

4. Texas- Tom Herman is in, Charlie Strong is out. Texas is back. Texas is a Top 10 team! Slow all the way down and come back in a year or 2. Expectations of burnt orange fans are completely out of whack. But eclipsing the 5 wins from last year shouldn’t be too difficult with this schedule. The Longhorns have talent but depth is an issue, especially on the offensive line. You already know, if you can’t protect your quarterback, you can’t play football. I really hope Shane Buechele’s parents took out an insurance policy on him. He may be running for his life a lot this season. There is good news though. If Tom Herman can keep his QB upright, they have playmakers in Collin Johnson and Devin Duvernay at WR. Todd Orlando is the new defensive coordinator and there’s nowhere to go but up from last years’ Swiss cheese D.

3. Florida- Unless Jim McElwain got a Steve Spurier offensive blood transfusion expect to see another season of non-explosive offensive football. The Gators finished 100th in scoring in 2015 and 107th in 2016. This Florida team is underwhelming. I could name a bunch of defensive players that will keep them in games, but I won’t. This team could very well win the SEC East, but if a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear it did it really happen?

2. Michigan- Back to back years, this is becoming a trend. Aside from games against Penn St and Ohio St, this schedule looks like a snoozer. George, what about Florida week 1 and the Wisconsin game? What about it? Sounds like 13-10 ballgames with teams below average offenses masquerading as defensive juggernauts. Michigan only returns 5 starters, and will be playing a ton of freshman. There is good news Wolverines fans. Jim Harbaugh is your coach. If anyone can grind out a 10 win season on the backs QB Wilton Speight and RB Chris Evans it’s the khaki man.

1. Washington- The Huskies non-conference games with Rutgers, Montana, and Fresno State is somehow weaker than last years schedule. To make their schedule even easier, UW plays Oregon, Washington St, and Utah all at home, and avoids USC altogether. I believe Chris Peterson is a great coach. I believe Washington will have a good running game with Miles Gaskins and Lavon Coleman. I believe D Coordinator Pete Kwiatkowski will be able to field a formidable defense despite losing Budda Baker, Sidney Jones, Kevin King, and Elijah Qualls to the NFL. But they will not be battle tested and will probably lose a game because I DO NOT BELIEVE IN JAKE BROWNING. How could I say that? He threw for 3,430 yards and 43TDs last year. Browning was carried by the Husky defense. They created easy scoring opportunities from short fields. He did not impress in games vs. Arizona, Utah, USC, Colorado, and Alabama. Even if Washington does finish undefeated expect to hear grumblings about leaving them out of the Top 4.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

The Truth and Lies of Colin Kaepernick

By now you’ve probably heard a few lies about why Colin Kaepernick is not on an NFL roster… Good thing you have me to set the record straight!

Lie #1: Kaepernick sucks and can’t play anymore. Whoever says that is either towing the company line or doesn’t look at stats. Either way, theyI will admit that Kaepernick has not helped his case by not speaking publicly and letting the powers that be control the narrative but facts are facts… Kaepernick is being black balled. He is not being signed due to cowardice, irrational fear, and hypocrisy. Good thing we have easy access to stats to help figure out which of us is right.

Take a look at his stats… Kaepernick is only 29 years old and ranks 11th in career QB rating among active quarterbacks. He’s ahead of Carson Palmer, Derek Carr, Joe Flacco, Andrew Luck, Eli Manning, Matthew Stafford, Cam Newton, and a bunch of other names you know. He has been to more Super Bowls, NFC championship games than four of the guys I just named.  Coming off injury in 2016, Kaepernick started just 11 games. He threw 16 touchdowns and only 4 interceptions while playing for the 49ers. San Francisco was the team with the least talent in the NFL last season. Kaepernick finished the season with a higher passer rating in 2016 than 13 other starters. If you add in the immense personal and professional pressure he was under, his future looks bright.

Owners, general managers, and coaches regularly tell us they want competition and the best 53 guys on their team. Clearly that’s not true. The numbers speak for themselves. Kaepernick is clearly NFL starter quality, which means he’s absolutely qualified to be a backup. TWENTY-THREE backup quarterbacks have been signed this offseason. NONE of which have the success Kaepernick has. Ryan Fitzpatrick, Geno Smith, Case Keenum, Matt Schaub, Dan Orlovsky, Blaine Gabbert, Kellen Moore, Matt McGloin… Damn, my fingers are getting tired. Some of these guys have proven to us numerous times they have a hard time throwing more TDs than interceptions, even on good teams. These are the things they usually don’t talk about on TV and radio. General managers have anonymously said he is good enough to be a starter. So why isn’t Kaepernick signed? The same reason they need to be anonymous. FEAR.

Lie #2: Kaep is bad guy. Did Colin Kaepernick get a DUI, commit domestic abuse, beat his kid, or violate the league drug policy and I missed it? Nope. Franchises regularly sign domestic abusers, and guys with DUI’s despite public backlash. What makes Kaepernick so different? His protest made people uncomfortable because it brought up an issue that makes non-brown people uncomfortable: social injustice. The copout is Kaepernick’s protest “disrespected our flag and our military”. I really hope you don’t believe that BS. The United States was founded on protest. The protests against the British government were violent and ultimately caused the American Revolutionary war. Less than 100 years later, the Civil War started over protest of slavery and state’s rights. Our service men and women have fought, sacrificed, and died so we could protest. Kaepernick PEACEFULLY protested yet  - for some reason - is considered un-American. This is hypocritical, cowardly, and rooted in irrational fear.

Lie #3: Our military is offended. Both of my grand fathers served in the military. I have also traveled around the world visiting our servicemen and women. I have a great appreciation for our military. I’ve spoken with numerous servicemen and women who said ‘it doesn’t feel good to see someone kneeling at the National Anthem, but we fight to protect these freedoms for everyone’. If many people in the military can accept Kaepernick standing up for what he feels is right, why can’t you?

It makes me angry when people say Kaepernick “disrespected our flag and our military” because of their hypocrisy. Many of our servicemen and women are homeless, unemployed, and struggling when they retire from active duty. Those same people that condemn Kaepernick for “offending” the military don’t lift a finger to help them. They walk by them daily like trash on the street, but you are worried about Kaeprnick’s alleged disrespect. Do something. Call your congressman, volunteer, or raise money before you come at anybody else on your soapbox.

Lie #4: Sports are not for protests. Muhammad Ali and other athletes protested the Vietnam War. In 1968, Tommie Smith and John Carlos protested on the medal stand with a raised fist. In 1980, the U.S. boycotted the Olympics in Moscow in protest of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. Billy Jean King and Venus Williams fought for women to get equal pay at Wimbledon… and won. The NBA, MLB, and NFL have all gone on strike. The list goes on and on of successful times sports has been used for protest.

Lie #5: Kaepernick needs to clean up his image. Maybe if Kaepernick cut his hair he would be signed? What’s wrong with the image of a guy who has never been in trouble, donates millions, does community service, and stands up for the rights of others? His hair?? We appreciate Trump, Hannity, Tapper, and Maddow for standing up for causes they believe in and not wavering through adversity. Why is it such a problem when a black athlete does it, why does he need to be silenced? Shouldn’t we appreciate a person whose opinions can’t be bought, and will stand in the fire and take the bullets for others.

 Ryan Fitzpatrick, Aaron Rodgers, or Andrew Luck hair situation is more palatable for you.

We have to be willing to have these uncomfortable conversations about race and injustice in this country. We know that most police officers are good people trying to do the right thing. We also have to admit that some officers are criminals and they have unjustly murdered American citizens. Those officers/criminals are to blame for dividing our country, not those who stand up and shine a light on the issue.

There’s only ONE reason why Kaepernick is not on an NFL roster: NFL owners are SCARED for ALL of the wrong reasons. I really hope some owner has the balls and courage to do what’s in the best interest of his football team winning games and sign Kaepernick. The owners are terrified that you the fans may get mad about this issue. How about doing something for a change and show them you are pissed Kaepernick hasn’t been signed? Fortune favors the bold.

“The cowards never started and the weak died along the way. That leaves us, ladies and gentlemen. Us.” 
 Phil Knight, Shoe Dog

Lonzo Ball and BBB might just be worth $1 Billion

I have the best idea to change the footwear industry and increase athlete endorsement dollars forever… and it was inspired by  Lonzo B...