Weekly Wisconsin Sports Wank

Bucks. D
BUT, while most of us were caught up in the Madness the Bucks beat the Cavs Saturday night, go figure. They take the four season series 3 to 4. For some reason recently the Bucks always play their best against the Cavs, it just doesn't carry over when they play the rest of the league. Big news with the Bucks this week is the firing/stepdown of Bucks GM Larry Harris. While he was our GM my opinion on his job performance was pretty low. But in retrospect he did a decent job given the situation he came into and the amount of power he was given to change it. And in addition by all accounts he is a good person and excellent to work with. The end of his time here wasn't the result of his failure to cultivate good relationships with the people he worked with. He had been in the organization for 20 years since he was a teenager. His father is Del Harris and Bucks fans are familiar with that name. I kind of regret the fact that a guy like that, who came up thru the ranks, couldn't make it work as the GM. The Bratwurst and others do a good job analyzing his tenure in depth. Speculation on his replacement is still ongoing with Donnie Walsh getting the most mention (which is wishful thinking to me, Pacers might be down right now but the organization as a whole is still in a better place than the Buck are). Most agree that Krystowiak also is on his way out. Besides my earlier mention of Terry Porter I think a good fit for the Bucks might be the forgotton Jeff Bzeldik (forgive if I butchered his last name).

University of Wisconsin men's basketball. A+
For continuing to prove most of the nation wrong (including a**hole teenage Michigan State fans who like to post on UW fan sites. Unfortunately they made it to 16 also.). Unfortunately it's looking like the media was right about a weak BigTen as Indiana couldn't stand their first round test and Purdue bowed out to Xavier. I was real worried about how they would handle Beasley and Co. but the Badgers proved to be more than ready. Next up is Davidson. This Curry fellow worries me too but I think Flowers will be able to get a handle on him. Something about this year's team is beginning to cause a cautious stir in the fan base here. The atmosphere is similar to the feeling in 2001 when Dick Bennett took the Badgers all the way to the Final Four with our unappealing style of play. Dare we hope this season ends in a similar (or even better) outcome?

Marquette University men's basketball. B+
For the season. Yes Marquette's potential road to the Final Four got blown up with a rocket launcher in the form of a last second shot to ice the game for Stanford by Brook Lopez. But that was easily the best game played and the best effort the team has given all year. We had to have all cylinders clicking to even have a chance against Stanford's inside game and for the most part everyone left everything on the floor (could've used more from D. James, 10 dimes but only 9 points). So we died with our boots on, but have to face the fact that once again Marquette does not advance past the first round. None of the major goals for the season were reached (finish in the top 4 of the Big East, get to the Sweet 16) but it was not a total failure. We're still looking good for next year with Trevor Mwabke coming back along with most of the starters. And can anyone tell me why is it Marquette has not recruited a semi-skilled player over 6-9? Does Crean prefer the small ball approach?

Green Bay Packers.
Pack resigned Atari Bigby last week in a good move that will help keep the secondary stable. We still need to start thinking about replacements for Woodson and Al Harris who started to really show some wear and tear last season. Another season with those two starting at corner will probably open the flood gates when we play teams with big, fast, physical receivers. Big move on the free agent market with the signing of Brandon Chillar to compete with Brady Poppinga at strong side linebacker. Wow what a risky move by Ted Thompson! Hope you feel that sarcasm, Ted. Haven't heard any new rumors about prospects for backup QB and Quinn Gray just signed with the Texans so there goes a potential good fit. I really think Thompson might be content to go into the season with Craig Nall as the backup. I think he just does whatever the fan base thinks he shouldn't do and rolls with it. Let's move on, I think I am still in Brett-withdrawl.

Milwaukee Brewers.
Just about ready for opening day with the announcement that (surprise!) Ben Sheets will get the opening day start. Hasn't he always gotten the opening day start since he's been here? (provided he was healthy). Seems the starting rotation is pretty set with Sheets, Jeff Suppan, Manny Parra, Dave Bush, Claudio Vargas, and Seth McClung. I had no idea opening day was so close. Enjoy it while you can extremely casual baseball fans. Soon the only sports on tv will be golf, tennis, and baseball. Anyway rumor has it Brewers management is being proactive in trying to asuage Prince Fielders ego but face potential difficulty in that Scott Boras is his agent. But at least they are being proactive. In the past the Brewer's approach to their young talent has been to wait until their contracts are up and then hope they will resign for generally less than their market value out of loyalty. Glad Attanasio is putting his wallet where his mouth is.

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