Thursday, July 31, 2014

2013 Fantasy Football Review: Quarterback Edition

It is finally time for some more fantasy football talk. I am going to share my predictions from last year, and how they actually stacked up to the finish. I started doing this last year, and I had a lot of fun. This week I'll focus on quarterbacks, and next week I'll reveal this year's rankings.

QB fantasy football:

2013 prediction No. 1: Drew Brees. Actual finish for Brees: second.
Pretty much knew he'd be up there. Good pick. Nobody really expected the next guy on the list to beat him by that much, at least I didn't.
2013 prediction No. 2: Peyton Manning. Actual finish for Manning: first.
I know for a fact that I had him higher than many people last year, and even caught some flack for it. However, I just knew that the addition of Welker would help Manning's production to swell. What I didn't know was that it would explode into what it was, and that Julius Thomas would have as much or more to do with the jump as Welker did.
2013 prediction No. 3: Cam Newton. Actual finish for Newton: third.
Two years in a row that I correctly predicted Newton's actual finish. Thus far, I've done a really good job of predictions.
2013 prediction No. 4: Aaron Rodgers. Actual finish for Rodgers: 24.
This looks really bad, but injuries derailed what would have likely been another spectacular season for A-Rod.
2013 prediction No. 5: Matt Ryan. Actual finish for Ryan: 12.
Not a great pick. Certainly did not expect the Falcons to fall off so quickly. Certainly didn't help to not have a healthy Roddy White all year, or Julius Jones for the whole season.
2013 prediction No. 6: Tony Romo. Actual finish for Romo: 11.
Was a lot higher on Romo then he turned out to finish. I even drafted him in my most important league, which sort of worked out OK. He was hurt for a game with the rib injury. Not that it should be an excuse.
2013 prediction No. 7: Matthew Stafford. Actual finish for Stafford: seven.
Boom. Right on the money with this one. I think Stafford is pretty much relegated to this or lower each year. Don't think he has the stuff to become elite.
2013 prediction No. 8: Tom Brady. Actual finish for Brady: 15.
Though I did predict a decline for Brady from year's past, I didn't predict the drop to be far enough.
2013 prediction No. 9: Robert Griffin III. Actual finish for RGIII: 19.
Should have known he would be injured and ineffective.
2013 prediction No. 10: Russell Wilson. Actual finish for Wilson: Eight.
Underrated the most consistent performer of the year, but not far off.

11. Andrew Luck (actual: five)
12. Josh Freeman (actual: LOL)
13. Ben Roethlisberger (actual: nine)
14. Andy Dalton (actual: four)
15. Joe Flacco (actual: 18)
16. Eli Manning (actual: 21)
17. Jay Cutler (actual: 22)
18. Alex Smith (actual: 14)
19. Matt Schaub (actual: 32)
20. Philip Rivers (actual: 6)

Overall, I feel like I did about as good a job as one can do to try and predict the unpredictable world of the NFL.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Why can’t we make more feel-good sports movies for kids?

What ever happened to all the feel-good sports movies for kids? 
I remember several hit sports movies geared toward the child and adult audiences alike when I was growing up. 
I mean “The Mighty Ducks” (and its sequels), “Cool Runnings,” “Angels in the Outfield,” “Space Jam,” “Little Big League,” “Little Giants” and even “Air Bud” were all feel-good sports movies. 
They couldn’t have possibly used up all the good ideas for movies like that. Did it become unsuccessful to make those types of movies? Unprofitable? 
I was watching “The Mighty Ducks” not too long ago, and I was eating up every cheesy line and remembering a day that was so full of innocence and potential. I want my godson to feel that same way when he grows up, but right now those kinds of movies just don’t exist anymore. 
Why are there no more “Rookie of the Year” movies? What about “The Sandlot”?
There is no way that they are fresh out of ideas for movies like this. I refuse to believe that there isn’t a market for this type of movie. I mean participation and interest of kids and sports can’t be that low that a great movie in the vein of the aforementioned ‘90s classics couldn’t draw a profitable audience. 
I mean, there hasn’t been a golf movie yet, right? Why not get, say, the kid from the Sprint framily commercials to play a young teenager who buys some magical set of golf clubs from a garage sale that used to belong to Bobby Jones or Jack Nicklaus or heck, even Tiger Woods? The clubs instantly make him a world-class golfer, and he gets on the pro tour. “Gordon,” the goth weirdo that nobody really knows why he is around, could caddy for the kid. This could totally work. 
With the piqued interest in soccer throughout the United States thanks to the U.S. doing well at the World Cup, don’t tell me that some sort of underdog story about a kid making his way onto some all-star soccer team wouldn’t be a great movie. 
I can’t understand why this genre of movie has fizzled. I mean, it’s also been more than 20 years since the Mighty Ducks came out in 1992; why not remake it? It has passed that point where that’s a possibility. There is no doubt a plethora of child actors in the stable at Disney Channel would be willing to learn how to skate and film in Minnesota during the winter. 
Why can’t we make this happen? 
I want my godson and possible future children to have that same experience of a magical sports story that I did when I grew up in the ‘90s. 
And I have to admit that I would like to have some more movies to enjoy myself – the cheesier the better.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

An update

I thought it was high time that I post an update on things in my life and with all that has gone on in the past few months for those who follow this blog.

If you haven't noticed, I haven't been making my weekly posts and that is because I have left Bottineau and moved back to the central Minnesota area. I originally had accepted a part-time sports writing job in New London, Minnesota at a small paper. However, after accepting that and working my remaining month in Bottineau I came upon another opportunity with the Mille Lacs County Times.

I came back to interview for the position, making a round trip of nearly 1,000 miles in less than 36 hours to meet with two Jeffs. After this I made the move back to Minnesota as planned, leaving myself a week to unpack and find out which city I'd be going to--New London or Princeton/Milaca. After a second interview a few days into my new residence in Minnesota I was offered the job at the Mille Lacs County Times as a full-time reporter doing mostly sports, but some school/news/outdoors as well.

I should mention that in the process of finishing my employment at the Bottineau Courant, I helped pick my replacement. Shortly before I left, Matthew Seimisch was picked to be that person. During my first few weeks back in Minnesota I did layouts and helped him learn that side of the job, since had little prior experience. Since, he has become nearly as proficient as I, and he appears to be doing a great job. I keep in touch with him via email fairly regularly, and have been keeping tabs on his work as well, and I'm pleased to say I think the Courant made the right choice. To follow his work check out the Borderlands Sport Report blog he started at Also he started a twitter feed for the Courant sports department, and you can follow that @CourantSports.

I have now had nearly three months on the job, and made it through all of the (shortened) spring sports season and some of the summer months too. I have been slowly learning and adapting to this new job, and while things are quite different here, I feel like I'm learning everyday.

I do miss the people, the job and the community of Bottineau everyday, and I'm sure I will for a long time. However, I also enjoy being close to family and living with my friends in our four bedroom house. I do have a 35 minute commute to work everyday, and have to do a lot of driving to cover my events on occasion, but at least I don't have anymore 360-mile round trips to Bismarck for a three-hour hockey game ;)

I have been doing some golfing, but not nearly as much as I like or as I did in Bottineau. Also, I've only played basketball once since the move. Wednesday and Sunday basketball nights are one of the things that I miss most.

I still plan to post on here on occasion, and I will leave all my prior posts with the photos I took during my time in Bottineau up.

I enjoyed my more than 3.5 years in Bottineau, and I hope that I can transfer the wisdom and knowledge I gained there to my new location.

Feel free to keep tabs on me @typhoonater467 on twitter. I also have a new blog set up for my new job, and you can check that out at