Friday, July 9, 2010

Kerrzy's Notebook: Random Friday Thoughts

Purple Drank

JaMarcus Russell’s fall from grace continued week – the former Oakland Raiders QB, who is now looking for a job, is now also facing a drug charge!

The number one pick in 2007, and current ‘one of the NFL’s biggest draft busts of all time’ was caught with some codeine syrup and no prescription at his Alabama home – part of an undercover narcotics investigation.

If you’re unfamiliar with the recreational side of prescription codeine syrup, let me fill you in: In a trend that seemingly started in Texas, people get high by mixing cough syrup with 7Up and Jolly Ranchers. Listen to a random assortment of Texas hip hop and you’ll more than likely hear a reference to this concoction, which is known as Purple Drank and lean, among other things.

What makes this story awesome though is that CBS Sports columnist Mike Freeman actually made himself some of that purple stuff and TRIED it!

“Dear law enforcement: Please do not arrest me. The following was done for journalistic purposes only. My syrup was legally obtained from a doctor. My Purple Drank was not distributed and the leftovers were flushed down the sink. Except for the 7-Up. And the Jolly Ranchers.”

Incase you’re wondering, Freeman says it’s a stupid idea (“Even sniffing glue calls Purple Drank stupid”), though I wasn't really expecting him to endorse it!

Goal Line Hand

FIFA says it’s going to consider changing the rules after that Luis Suarez handball that kept Uruguay in the World Cup and led to Ghana heading home.

Remember that one? With seconds left in extra time and the ball heading towards a goalie-less Uruguayan net, Suarez reached out and batted the ball from danger, earning himself a straight red card – but Ghana missed the ensuing penalty kick and then lost on penalties.

FIFA President Sepp Blatter says they’ll sit down in October and have a look at what can be done.

The only rule that would have sent Ghana through won’t be one of the considered changes though. Blatter says a rule that would see a goal given when a handball clearly prevents one won’t be brought in.

So basically he’s saying…nothing.

The International Football Association Board will also look at goal-line, you know, a camera…that’s already in the net anyway…Knowing them though, they’ll decide against it.

As for this weekend’s matches, I may not have gotten all of the results right, but the piece of paper on the wall of my parents’ house says I picked Spain to win the whole tournament. It’ll be a good game, but I think the Spanish defense will shut down Holland and their possession game will lead to enough chances to put it away. What do you think?

Blanc Cheque

The French Football Federation, fresh off a horrid showing at the World Cup, already has a new coach in charge – and he’s mad!

Laurent Blanc says he’ll only use the players he trusts when he rebuilds the national team, calling the behavior of the players an “outrage.”

Have you ever noticed that when english is someone’s second language, they tend to be a little more poetic when giving sports-themed interviews? I notice it a lot with European hockey and soccer players. Blanc had a good line that falls into that category for me:

“What bothers me is that, after the World Cup, a new coach should be able to lean on a hard core. This hard core is not even a melon’s pip!”

I dare say you would never hear that phrase at an NHL press conference. Imagine hearing a coach describe his team’s performance with something like this:

“They played like the seeds of a tomato, in search of some dirt in which to blossom…”

Anyways – Blanc has been handed the task of sorting through the rubble of the French implosion in South Africa and picking up the still useable pieces. It sounds like a big part of the problem was the old manager though, Raymond Domenech, so it might actually not be that tough to get the team back on track.

Barca Bankrupt?

It seems anytime you see a story about the finances of Europe’s big soccer teams, it’s never good.

They make tons and tons of money, but seems to spend far more than they earn, and so they’re caught in a kind of bizarre financial purgatory where they’re hundreds of millions (if not billions of dollars) in debt, yet they’re making hundreds of millions of dollars each year.

The latest team to fall into that category is Barcelona – team president Sandro Rosell says they’re dealing with “cashflow tensions” at the moment.

The “tensions” are serious enough that the club has been forced to take out a loan of about - you might want to sit down for this - $198,800,000 Canadian.

The problem lies with the team’s TV partner, Mediapro, who just went into receivership and may not be able to honor the TV rights deal that runs until 2013. I’m sure you’re wondering what kind of crazy amount of money that deal must be worth to force the team into take out a $200-million loan…well, here it is: $1.325-billion.

Wow! The amount of money in pro sports is absolutely amazing. Maybe it’s time Barca gets a corporate sponsor for that jersey (they’ve never had one, believe it or not, and currently give Unicef the spot for free!).

Tour de Drama

So Floyd Landis is taking shots at Lance Armstrong again as the Tour de France gets going over in…France, I suppose.

A little while ago, Landis, who had his title stripped in 2006 for failing a drug test, went in-depth with his claims that plenty of riders do the drug thing, but they just know how to not get caught. His information was pretty thorough and gained a lot of attention, and now the World Anti-Doping Agency is involved.

The Wall Street Journal, who first published the Landis emails, says WADA and Interpol are working together to get to the bottom of this.

Yeah, you read right. The international police are involved. Watch out! If they plan on sending an officer undercover, he better be comfortable wearing spandex, otherwise he’s still out like a sore thumb!

Back to Landis’ latest comments about seven-time Tour winner Lance Armstrong – he says the two of them took two prohibited blood transfusions during the 2004 race and that Armstrong gave him banned testosterone patches along the way.

Armstrong (of course) refuted those claims though, with a pretty awesome quote (which is right up there with the melon’s pip):

He says whatever Landis is saying is like “a carton of sour milk: once you take the first sip, you don’t have to drink the rest to know it has all gone bad.” Boosh!

Meanwhile, Armstrong’s sponsors say they’re all still on his team…at least until we find out that Landis was telling the truth!

One more thing…

If you didn’t hear, Portuguese soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo announced this week that he’s now a father – though the identity of Cristiano Ronaldo Jr. remains a mystery.

Here’s a somewhat funny video of some British person with a camera harassing the Real Madrid striker:

Have a great weekend!

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