Michigan State Has an Endowment of $3 Billion


When your school protects a monster for decades, of course it's going to hurt your bottom line:

Moody's is weighing whether to downgrade the debt of Michigan State University because of the scandal involving disgraced USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar.

A rating downgrade could mean the school would have to pay more to borrow money. 

Nassar was a member of the MSU faculty. He pleaded guilty to charges he sexually abused his patients and was sentenced last week to 175 years in prison. 

Michigan State faces lawsuits by more than 100 women, alleging that the university allowed Nassar's abuse to persist despite victims' complaints. The suits are one of the major factors prompting the Moody's review. The school is seeking to have those lawsuits dismissed. Lou Anna Simon resigned as school president last week.

I love how no one focuses on how the victims have been impacted. Hundreds of women are victims of a serial molester and someone is worried that the interest rate on money borrowed by a land grant university is going to be too high?

Nassar was hired by Michigan State in 1986. He began molesting children in 1992. That's how long this has been going on. But, damn, let's fret over the costs of taking out a loan.

Michigan State has an endowment of $3 billion dollars, and so I really don't feel sorry for them. Start settling now because lawyers are in short supply, what with everyone who has ever met with Trump needing one right now.

Everyone knows Michigan State is going to pass the savings on to those who pay tuition. They're not touching their endowment. They're not going to do the right thing. They're going to increase tuition, cut services, and hire as many lawyers as they can.

Fake Tickets for the Stanley Cup Finals

I wonder how often this goes on:

Pittsburgh police say two Massachusetts men printed up bogus Stanley Cup Final tickets and tried to sell them outside the Penguins arena.

Police say Quincy resident John Green and Wareham resident Ronald Seeley were spotted Wednesday outside Consol Energy Center, where the Penguins were hosting the San Jose Sharks in the second game of the best-of-seven series.

One witness told police the men offered to sell him six tickets for $200 each. Police say the face value of the tickets is at least $235 each.

Police say the men tried to drive away but were caught with nearly $1,400 in cash and 18 fake tickets. Police say the men were trying to rip some of the tickets up.

Professionals? Irate Bruins fans? Or were they just preying on people who showed up for the game and tried to buy some tickets from scalpers outside of the arena?

None of the above. Anyone who sells you tickets for LESS than their face value in a ridiculous quantity isn't holding the real thing. We're talking about the Pittsburgh Penguins in the Stanley Cup Finals. These guys should have held out for five hundred bucks a ticket and they should have gone with selling them in pairs. Now they get to deal with the cops in one of America's best hockey towns. I still don't know how they thought selling the tickets below face value was a winning strategy.

If you're going to scam people, at least know your product. Maybe this is how Bruins fans operate--to them, a Pens-Sharks matchup probably looks like a $200 deal.

Heads Are Buried In the Sand at the NCAA

There are more than a few scandals brewing in the NCAA right now. John Oliver, who is English and makes jokey-jokes on the television box, has the NCAA's number. It's a clown-like conspiracy of epic proportions. It is raking in an un-Godly amount of money that, if it were to dry up, would cause untold numbers of universities in the United States to collapse and have to begin using their massive endowments to continue stealing money from students.

I mean, tuition is up, everywhere, and the price of a college education is skyrocketing. And yet, students are continuing to flock to the games, unaware of the link between the money their school makes on athletics and the lack of any measurable decline in their own personal costs for going to the same school. It's a circle jerk extraordinaire.

Duke Basketball ignored a possible rape scandal. Don't mention it!

North Carolina spent years tricking people into thinking they were actually in classes. Shh!

Kentucky is perfect this year. How much do you want to bet someone's ineligible and none of those wins are gonna count? Whoops!

Money, money, money. Anybody getting educated? Nope.

Deion Sanders and Prime Prep Academy

Deadspin reminds us that Deion Sanders is still a self-licking ice cream cone:
In only the last few months, that school, called, appropriately, Prime Prep Academy, has endured one series of embarrassments after another. Sanders has been fired as head football coach not once but twice. He's been accused of choking two fellow employees. Students havewalked out in protest in the middle of class. Hundreds of laptops have disappeared overnight, most likely stolen. His elementary school—Prime Prep is K-12—was recently named by non-profit Children at Risk as the worst academic institution in North Texas, finishing dead last in a ranking of more than 1,000 schools. And not long ago, the local press got hold of a secretly recorded audio tape in which Sanders could be heard telling his administrators that he not only wanted a significant pay raise, but a new job title, too: "HNIC," short for "Head N*gger in Charge."
Yeah, that's the way to run a school.

That's No Way to Run a Franchise

Now, this could turn out to be a hoax of some kind--something that wouldn't surprise me in the least. It could turn out to be something written as a draft and sent by accident or created entirely in someone's attempt to speak with Dolan's authority.

But, if it is as authentic as advertised, the NBA has another owner to get rid of. The New York Knicks should be taken away from Mr. Dolan, just as the Los Angeles Clippers were taken away from Donald Sterling.

Can Plaxico Burress Come Back?

Michael Vick showed that a player can go to prison/jail/detention and come back in top form and win games in the NFL. Is Burress tough enough? Did he wow them with a great workout? All well and good. His debt to society is paid, give him a chance.

And when I say, give him a chance, I mean, give him just that one chance to show that he isn't a violence-prone headcase. Give him a chance to prove himself. And if he screws up, cut him.

I wonder if he has a clause like that in his deal. Any of that headcase stuff, and his money is gone, something like that.

A Desperate Move to Stay Relevant

I hope Tiger plays well. The issue here isn't really whether he wins this tournament or not--it's staying relevant and visible. For Tiger to slide in the rankings and drop off the radar means the end of what little endorsement money is coming his way. By competing, he gets face time on camera, maybe a media-friendly interview spot or two (he really needs to be more available and forthcoming with the golfing world's media), and he needs to play well.

If he blows through a few holes, quits, and says nothing, he might as well sit down for the rest of the year and plan a "comeback" next season.

Is it Really the Ball?

JabulaniThe most important thing in the whole entire world right now is the sport of World Cup Soccer. Adidas gets to decide what technology the ball uses, and no one is happy about it:

Several players are going all out against the new World Cup ball, with more than one comparing it to those bought at a supermarket.

And this time it's not only goalkeepers who are complaining. Strikers, defenders and midfielders are also lashing out at the Adidas ball just a few days before the monthlong tournament is to begin in South Africa.

The ball is called Jabulani, which means "to celebrate" in isiZulu, but not many are celebrating it so far. It's hard to find a player who is happy with it, and those who don't like it are not saving adjectives to describe their feelings.

"It's very weird," Brazil striker Luis Fabiano said Sunday. "All of a sudden it changes trajectory on you. It's like it doesn't want to be kicked. It's incredible, it's like someone is guiding it. You are going to kick it and it moves out of the way. I think it's supernatural, it's very bad. I hope to adapt to it as soon as possible, but it's going to be hard."

Brazil goalkeeper Julio Cesar on Saturday called the ball "terrible" and was the first to compare it to those plastic ones bought on a supermarket. Italy striker Giampaolo Pazzini said the same thing, calling it a "disaster."

Here's how jacked up that article is over at Sports Illustrated. It really is one of the most incompetent news stories I've seen in quite a while. When you write a story about a ball, you should probably find a good picture of the ball. I know it sounds like the demented ranting and raving of a man wearing pants that are too tight and with ideas that were flushed out of his ears with hydrogen peroxide, but this is a visual medium. It's where you can put up a simple photo, perhaps a video, maybe an interactive graphic, and do something for a reader or a blogger. I don't know. It's where you can make a token, half-assed effort at trying and see it pay off for you.

I've never been above half-assing it, and I'm not going to start now. What?

Never mind. I'm on a roll, homes. Am I that kind of a blogger? Absolutely. I found and cropped (read: stole) a photo of the Jabbablouyouaniyappidy-whatever ball and I am making a heck of an effort here to give you something useful and informative. I'm asking the question--really? Is this ball really like the cheap ones purchased at supermarkets? I have to find out if this is true. I have to go to work for you and make something happen. Blogging is more than just finding an article and saying something about it--it's. Blogging is more than...hold it. My roll just came to a stop.

I found a picture, you see. I did what I should have done. I made this about me.

So, after my nap and a little apple juice, I went out to a supermarket and tried to buy a soccer ball. They just laughed at me. They told me I was crazy. Supermarkets don't really sell soccer balls unless they are an impulse item or a key buy added to a section of the retail establishment where toys and accessories and other purchased-in-bulk items are sold off of end caps or out of tables full of assorted pieces of merchandise that can be bought by people who don't really go looking for their ilk in supermarkets. You know, like hamster balls, duffel bags, soup can crushers, beaded seat covers, and Christmas ornaments that won't offend anyone Jewish.

It was a total bust. I must have gone to two supermarkets. Wow. I could have bought a new shower mat and made a soccer ball out of that, but I'm avoiding the impossible and trying to bring you the probable. I could have bought a beach ball. I passed. So, okay, fine--I went online and I ordered a soccer ball.


It's going to take about three weeks to get to me, so. You know. I'll post something. That's how blogging works. I bought it out of some supermarket chain that allowed me to select items for purchase and throw them into a consolidated shopping cart after I spent a half an hour setting up an online profile. Oh, this wasn't entirely for buying a soccer ball--this is how I'm going to get some Archway cookies. The lemon ones. 

I know it's a waste of time, but I'll probably check the mail tomorrow. Well, that's kind of stupid. The ball--and, more importantly, the Archway cookies--are all being shipped from an Albertson's in San Antonio, Texas, but I did choose UPS expedited shipping, I think. I might have clicked on that wrong. Let me check the confirmation E-mail and I'll get back to you.

Anyway, I was going to take the soccer ball that I bought in the supermarket and see if it was any good. Miranda played soccer when she was in high school, and she actually has the ability to "bend it like Beckham" because she has these incredibly fat legs and can kick things really hard.

This post was going to be about what Miranda told me about the supermarket ball. Oh, and I was going to get a World Cup ball as well. Maybe do a little side by side comparison. Maybe film Miranda kicking the two balls and giving her opinion. I don't know. Miranda doesn't really humor me when it comes to blogging.

Posted via web from An American Lion is on Posterous

Don't Get Caught Stealing Signs


This old saw again?



The Philadelphia Phillies have won back-to-back NL pennants and were World Champions in 2008.
They have a talented roster, but is there more to their success than talent?
Major League Baseball issued a warning to the Phillies on Tuesday concerning accusations that bullpen coach Mick Billmeyer was stealing signs during Monday night’s game against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field.
"We have looked at the video and talked to the Phillies about the actions of their bullpen coach,’’ a Major League Baseball official told


Stealing signs is as old as the game itself. You're not supposed to get caught. That's pretty much the entirety of this issue. Yes, it happens. No, you're not supposed to do it. When you get caught, ouch.

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Posted via web from TalkingSmackAboutSports

Bailing on Tiger

Hank HaneyI hope that this is innocent and all--I don't relish the idea of Tiger Woods presiding over the fiasco of a career and a personal life. To me, the man needs to stop thinking he can get away with things because of the possibility that a lot of what he does will be excused because he's a "kid." Tiger Woods is not a kid, and now he's a golfer without a swing coach:
Tiger Woods’ longtime swing coach resigned Monday night, leaving the world’s No. 1 player without one of his top advisers as he tries to rebuild his game.
Hank Haney said in a statement to the Golf Channel that he enjoyed working with Woods but he thinks it’s time for him to step aside as his coach.
“I will always look back upon our past half-dozen years together as my best days in professional golf,” he said. “It would be a dream of any coach to have a student like Tiger Woods and for me it has come true. Just so there is no confusion I would like to make it clear that this is my decision."
Well, the speculation was correct, and Hank Haney probably doesn't have to worry about picking up clients. In fact, Hank has a pretty good deal going for himself. Here's what Hank put on his website last night:
I have informed Tiger Woods this evening that I will no longer be his coach.
I would like to thank Tiger for the opportunity that I have had to work with him over the past 6 plus years. Tiger Woods has done the work to achieve a level of greatness that I believe the game of golf has never seen before and I will always appreciate the opportunity that I have had to contribute to his successes. I have also enjoyed the association that I have had with Tiger both on and off the golfcourse as I have had some incredible experiences. 
But, what people who know golf can tell you, is that coaching is important, but mental preparedness is more important. Tiger can be the best-coached golfer in the world and still unravel like a cheap sweater when his head gets in the way. I really think there are physical issues here, and perhaps my speculation about pain killers was not as wildly off the mark as it could have been.
Posted via web from TalkingSmackAboutSports

Big Ben and His Counterproductive Behavior Under the Microscope

You have to love the para at the end:

Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger spent last weekend undergoing a behavioral evaluation rather than at the team's minicamp, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported Monday.

The paper, citing a team source, said that Roethlisberger, suspended for at least the first four games of the 2010 season by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell for off-the-field conduct, will be evaluated for "days" rather than weeks. After that, the report said, Roethlisberger could either return to the team or undergo further evaluation.

Roethlisberger was ordered by Goodell to stay away from the Steelers' training facility until his evaluation was complete. Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said he didn't know when Roethlisberger would return.

"I have talked to him," Tomlin said, according to the Post-Gazette. "I will continue to talk to him, and I don't have a crystal ball in regards to when he's going to be back in the facility. A lot of that has to do with the things he needs to do and of course the judgment of the commissioner."

While Roethlisberger was in his evaluation, quarterbacks Byron Leftwich, Dennis Dixon and Charlie Batch were all on the field for the Steelers. 

Do you know why the Steelers haven't outright gotten rid of Big Ben?

The answers are Leftwich, Dixon and Batch. Big Ben has job security, you see. But the real issue here is behavior.

If he's properly evaluated, and really given a chance, then who are we to judge him?

I think it comes down to this: the young man is an asshole. That's right. A douchebag. At least, in social situations and public places. He's difficult and demanding. That's what a lot of money can do to a young man.

What he needs is counseling, to show him that being an asshole and a douchebag are counterproductive. He can still be those things, but he needs to curtail his public activities with regards to assholery and douchebaggery because they are leading to legal jeopardy, lawsuits, and bad press. I will let you in on a little secret. Everyone with money is, to some extent, an asshole and a douchebag for a reason--everyone wants your money. How you deal with that aspect of life is where Big Ben has been wearing his ass for a hat.

Posted via web from TalkingSmackAboutSports