11.09.2007

Weekly Wisconsin Sports Wonk

I like that title so I think that will try to turn this into a running weekly feature, you know like the Friday Fryer on ArmchairGM (if you haven't heard of the site check it out). As I have said before in this space I love blogging, I love my blog, I love the concept of voicing my opinions on what needs to be heard to the masses; but I already have two jobs (9-5 and a hustle), a fiancee' (telling me that's not a job in itself!?), I'm trying to finish up grad school, and I have two children under the age of 2. Luckily for me this is a toil of love not something I'm forced to do.

So since I don't always have time to endlessly surf the net for the latest news or tidbit to comment on in my blog I frequently like to post mass commentary Daily Quickie style, but I don't like to bite my man D. Shanoff so I wanted to come up with my own concept. And this is it, the Weekly Wisconsin Sports Wonk (yes I admit I got the idea for the 'Wonk' part from John Gasaways wonderful-but-now-defunct 'Big Ten Wonk' blog. I like the word, sorry) where I can post my rants on the Packers, Brewers, Bucks, Badgers, and Marquette and not feel like I'm just a wannabe Deadspin dick rider. Also because it will only be weekly I won't feel pressured to post something everyday. Let's get to it:

Side note: I've decided to add weekly grades for each of my teams, maybe that will generate some hits.

Packers. Packers get a B+ from me this week. They showed good heart in 'grinding out' a victory in KC. But they still need to do something, anything to make the running game better. This PackerNews.com article suggests there may be a shake up soon. I really don't think the Pack's running game will improve significantly until they upgrade the position. A team can only be successful with a platoon running back approach if their offensive line play is consistent and above average. For the Pack that would be no and no.

Bucks. Bucks get a C+ this week. They have looked extremely average and inconsistent this week. They beat the Raptors pretty good, but then got smoked by the Rocket tonight. Can't get a feel yet for the type of team they will be this year. Whatever the type it seems like it will be the type that still does not play defense.

Badgers. Badgers have an incomplete right now, though they are currently leading Michigan at halftime at Camp Randall. The game last week with Ohio State was closer than the score indicated with us having our chances to win it, but we never should have lost to Illinois or Penn State. (I chalk that up to a young team's inexperience with tough road games). So maybe I can give them a cumulative seasonal grade instead, which would be C-. Wisconsin fans expected a lot more.

Update: I had my profanity laced tirade about how Wisconsin always jacks it off in big games when closing out the year but surprise they actually won. I feel bad that I turned off my tv in disgust after Michigan pulled to within 21 -23 in the third quarter but somehow I am certain they would not have won had I watched all the way thru. Still if they had won at least 1 of those three game maybe they would be in a better position BCS wise.

Marquette/UWM basketball. Marquette had their season opener tonight against IUPUI and squeaked out a victory, avoiding the upset bug that has been going around the top 25 this week. With the three veteran guards Dominic James, Wes Matthews, and Jerel McNeal returning plus the solid experienced role players they should be solid this year even in a tough Big East. And it looks like they might be getting some capable help in the future also.

UWM started out the season Friday with a win over Upper Iowa University, best known in the Midwest for their annoying commercials, I didn't even know they had an athletics program. Coach Rob Jeter had to weather last season with a lot of young inexperienced players after going to the NCAA's two years in a row with talent left behind by Bruce Pearl. I saw some flashes in their exhibition games that indicate some of those players are ready to turn the corner in a big way. They should make a good accounting of themselves in Horizon Leauge play.

Oh and don't sleep on Badgers basketball. Don't forget they were ranked #1 at one point last season before their second leading scorer Brian Butch went down for the year. Yeah Alando and Chris Rock, I mean Kammron Taylor, are gone but we have some other guys who look capable of stepping up.

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