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October 23, 2002
3 Days and counting

We're down to the final 3 days before the wedding...and things are as hectic as ever. I still haven't moved all my stuff to Barbie's, there's a chance of rain for the wedding, and we just found out the AAA travel agent guy didn't put in our request for the First Class upgrade for the flight. Grant it, all I have left to move is the big stuff, there is only a 20% chance of rain (which is high for CA), and AAA is supposed to get back to us within the next few hours about our upgrade. Meanwhile, I'm stuck at work trying to pretend my mind is thinking about Missile requirements. I can't wait for the vacation...ie. Honeymoon.

Posted by Don at 10:07 AM
October 20, 2002
IT'S MY BIRTHDAY!!

In case any of didn't know it, today is my birthday. If you didn't get me a gift, or at least give me a call to say Happy B-day...then shame on you, and be sure to make up for it next year with an extra large gift. This evening Barbie is taking me to La Fondue for dinner...good food with excellent dessert. She already got me a very nice Polar Heart Rate Monitor for my triathlon training...so she is way ahead of the rest of you....then again, she is going to be my Wife so she has to. :)

Well, this weekend was my last football game as a single man. 18 guys got together to play some flag-football Saturday morning, with my team winning 18-12 on a last minute pass to Raggio. Of course it took an interception by me to seal the game with less than a minute to play. Then again, I made the teams...so what do you expect. The morning got off to a rough start with the field we had planned on using being taken for practice by another football team. Luckily I found some random field close by and we were able to get started without too much delay. Ok...here are the teams and Graver's Top Ten moments of the game.

Lakehaven Lazies
Graver, Nick R., Raggio, Lindner, Nick V., Wytock, Yamo, Quique, DT

Ronco Rugrats
Cassidy, Keith, Mcnelis, Eric, Bourne, Burt, Blake, Rick

Top Ten Highlights
10. Finding random empty field to play on
9. 1st TD catch by Nick...reminiscent of a Randy Moss type of catch
8. Appearance of the Samurai QB (aka Yamo)...who slices up defenses with his bare hands
7. DT actually playing on a badly sprained ankle...if you saw his ankle then you know why this is a highlight
6. Raggio's comparison of Cassidy to a Wooden Indian ... ie. no mobility at QB
5. Jeremy getting pissed because he thought Nick was getting too many touches near the endzone while he and Raggio were supposedly wide open...then throwing the game winning TD to Raggio
4. Yamo getting the INT when they had the ball at our 10 yard line!
3. Not scoring a single running or receiving TD in the 2nd game because Nick dove and got my flags at the 1 yard line...followed by Blake somehow getting my flags on the next drive again at the 1 yard line. Both of them thought they there was no way they would get the angle...both of them were unfortunately wrong.
2. Winning the game of course
1. NOT GETTING INJURED BEFORE MY WEDDING

Post your highlights in the comments...

Normally I would continue to write about the Dolphin's game this weekend, but it was a travesty...and I don't feel like going into it. Ray Lucas was horrible and they had 6 Turnovers in a home loss to Buffalo.

Anyways...we are officially down to the last week before the wedding.

Posted by Don at 06:29 PM
October 16, 2002
Finally got to play some ball

Well last night I finally got to play some basketball. It has been quite awhile since I got to "hoop it up". Unfortunately there weren't a lot of people out there (SCU), so we only got a couple of games in...but they were both competitive. The sad part is that DT sprained his ankle again...the same one he sprained back on July 4th of 2001. First game, first play, and DT goes down. Anyways...Graver dominated...having to carry Jeremy and Nick on his shoulders during both games. Let's just say that Nick was getting burned left and right, and Lindner couldn't hit the broadside of a barn. It's always amazing how you can take off for a couple of months and come out shooting well...but as we all know, my next game is going to be awful. You only get one good day, then your brain forgets how to shoot. Well...back to work.

Posted by Don at 01:44 PM
October 14, 2002
Two days of football, two great games, two different results

This weekend I headed to Miami for my second bachelor party. I know all you women who read my posts (yeah right...who am I kidding) are upset by the fact that I got two bachelor parties, but this weekend was more of gathering of some good friends as opposed to the traditional bachelor party. Jonathan, my cousin and best man, set up a great weekend of activities which were to start Saturday morning. I arrived late Thursday night, so I spent Friday hanging out with the family. I also got one of the more critical wedding tasks completed...I bought my wedding band. It's a nice 6mm Platinum band...very plain but just my style.

Onto to Saturday and the start of two of the greatest games I have seen in a long time. Unless you are living on Planet Mars, or you have absolutely no college football sense, then you would know that Saturday was loaded with great college football games...starting with #9 FSU at #1 Miami and ending with #2 Texas at #3 Oklahoma. Jon got all of us some great seats under the over hang at the Orange Bowl...which was ideal for a day when the game started at high noon and the temps were in the 90's. He also got plenty of drinks and food for the pre-game festivities. The game was great...with FSU handing it to Miami for 3 1/2 quarters. FSU took a 13 point lead with less than 12 minutes to go in the 4th quarter. Miami proceeded to march down the field on their next drive and score a TD with about 5-6 minutes to go. If FSU can maintain a sustained drive then Miami goes down...but instead they go 3 and out and have to give the ball back to Miami. Miami, on 1st or 2nd down, ran a screen pass which resulted in a 68 yard play and set up the go ahead score with just over 5 minutes left. FSU, with the help of few calls by the referee, got the ball to roughly the 36 yard line with :01 seconds left. If Beitia, the FSU kicker, can make the field goal...then FSU is right back in the National Championship hunt, Miami winning streak is over, and the Wide Right demons have been exorcised! Let's just say none of these things happened...and FSU was left wondering "what if". As was the case in 2000 at the FSU vs. Miami game in the Orange Bowl...FSU came close, but lost 28-27.

Sunday was spent on Jonathan and Mark's boat out on Elliott Key or Biscayne Bay...not sure if they are the same place or not, but I know it was one of those two. In Miami, they have what is called the "Columbus Day Regatta"...which is basically a sailboat race, but everyone and there brother goes to this island to hang out on there boats and party. There must have been about a thousand boats all anchored around this island. The day was spent basically hanging out, eating, drinking, and swimming in the water. Julian and I actually saw A-Rod while we were in the water...he came by on a small raft boat with an engine. He stopped for just a second and said hi and continued on his way...probably heading to the multi-million dollar yacht.

That evening we went to Jon's house to watch the Miami Dolphins vs. Denver Broncos game...which ended up being just as great as the FSU Miami game from the day before. Miami struggled for most of the game early on, but got two quick scores in the 4th quarter to put them up by what seemed a commanding 9 point lead. The defense then had Denver at 3rd and 15 on their own 20 yd. line...if they hold, the game is basically over because there won't be enough time for Denver to score twice. Instead Denver converts and marches down the field and scores a TD. Denver then holds Miami and gets into FG range for Jason Elam. Elam drills a 55 yard FG to put Denver up with 40 seconds left in the game. Miami then proceeds to throw two incomplete passes and it is now 3rd and 10 with about 30 seconds left. The next play Fiedler, who we would later find out had a broken finger on his throwing hand, completes a phenomenal catch to Mcmichael for a first down. On the next play Fiedler then throws another complete pass...but this one went through a Denver players hands and right into the Fins receiver. Now Mare has a chance to win the game with 53 yard FG with 11 seconds left. As you can tell by the picture, he absolutely nailed it...and the Fins are now atop the AFC and are considered the best team in the NFL by NFL.com's power rankings.

Posted by Don at 06:32 PM
October 08, 2002
Graver gets first loss in fantasy football

CHI_MartyBooker.jpg Going into last night I was 18 points down in fantasy football, but I still had Marty Booker from the Chicago Bears, and he had Bubba Franks from Green Bay Packers. If you don't know fantasy football, 18 points is a lot of points for one player. Here is the scoring breakdown:

  • 6 points per receiving/rushing TD

  • 1 point per every 10 yards rushing/receiving

  • 2 points per a 2 point conversion

  • -2 points for any fumbles lost
  • The game started off great with Booker catching a TD pass early on in the first quarter. Then Favre decided to throw a 5 yard TD pass to Bubba Franks...his only catch of the game. With Bubba Franks TD I am down another 18 points because it basically negated Booker's TD, and I'm pretty sure I'm out of it. Then I check the stats in the fourth quarter to see how Booker is doing overall and he's got 140+ yards receiving...which equates to 14 points! Now I am only down by 4 points with about 5 minutes to go in the game. One long pass play or a TD pass and I remain undefeated! The Bears end up completing a long pass to David Terrell down to the 10 yard line with about 2 minutes to go. I'm on the edge of my seat hoping he'll throw a touchdown to Booker, but Jim Miller ends up throwing an Interception (-2 points for Jim Miller in fantasy scoring). Hence, I am now 4-1 in fantasy football and remain in 2nd place.

    Although...the highlight of the night was betting on whether or not there would be more than 2 players who threw a pass in the game. It's a crazy bet...but well worth the excitement of pulling for a trick play. In case you didn't watch the game, the Bears did end up trying a fake punt and threw an incomplete pass. Hence, Graver wins again! Wahoo!

    Posted by Don at 09:18 AM
    October 07, 2002
    Fins crush Pats...

    fiedler_vs_pats.jpg Fins crushed the Pats 26-13 this weekend. The score doesn't indicate the type of blowout of the game. The Dolphins dominated in every aspect of the game. I can't say I was 100% confident that the Fins would win after last weeks performance, but once again "Fiedler on the Roof" answered all my concerns. I was actually in Modesto celebrating Alan's 60th birthday on Saturday evening, so I ended up watching the game at a local sports bar which is owned by Miami Dolphins fans. One entire corner of the bar is filled with Miami fans, all watching the game on Big Screen. Although I enjoyed having a bunch of Miami supporters around, I was disappointed about how they all hated Fiedler. Fiedler is the "best QB in the NFL"!! That's right...you heard it here first. He doesn't mess up and gets the job done...and now that Ricky is in the backfield, the Fins are Superbowl bound! The only other team that has looked better is those damn Raiders. Let's just say that I get tired of hearing the Silver and Black talking about how good they are...it's kind of like hearing how good the 49ers are also. Call it East Coast bias, but the West Coast teams are no good. A good comparison will come next weekend when Miami has to travel to Denver. Denver beat the Niners a couple of weeks ago at Candlestick. If the Fins can come out with a win...then they are for real!!

    Posted by Don at 11:00 AM
    October 04, 2002
    FSU defeats Clemson 48-31

    jones_clemson.jpg FSU didn't look too impressive last night. Not only did they have to come back against Clemson, but the way they were scoring was not good. FSU relied on botched Clemson punt, a 97 yard kickoff return, a "should never happen" run by Greg Jones with less than 30 seconds left in the first half, and two fumbles in the second half by Clemson. All of these led to points by the Noles because it happened deep in Clemson territory. The offense just never seem to kick it into gear. Gregg Jones is a phenom, as is Anquan Boldin...but we just can't seem to get them and the QB going at the same time. Gregg Jones did have one of the toughest and most unbelievables runs I have seen in a long time...college or NFL. He scored on a 21 yard run after breaking about 6-7 tackles...none of which were little arm tackles. He then proceeded to mow down the last two guys for the score and the back breaker for Clemson. The bright spot for the Noles was that they were able to run out the clock at the end of the game and not give Clemson another shot at it. Plus FSU's defense was finally able to slow down Simmons (Clemson's QB). They now have 9 days of rest before heading to the Orange Bowl to play Miami...gulp.

    Posted by Don at 03:08 PM
    October 03, 2002
    FSU to host Clemson tonight

    clemson_vs_fsu.jpg The demons of Thursday night football struck the Noles last week...let's just hope lightning doesn't strike two weeks in a row. FSU is favored by 14 points going into Bowden Bowl 4...so aptly named because the Clemson coach is Tommy Bowden...Bobby's son. Of course I have done the analysis on this game...so here it is (courtesy of FreeMoneyBets.com).

    Clemson at FSU (FSU –14)
    My only wrong pick last week (3-1) was the Noles, who struggled in Louisville due in large part to poor offensive play calling, a struggling 2nd half defense and pouring down rain. Not only did they not cover the 15 point spread, but they lost the game. Clemson has had two weeks rest to prepare for this game, but they’ve probably been preparing since their win over Ga. Tech 3 weeks ago since Ball St. doesn’t take much preparation. Plus you have the factor that Tommy knows his dad pretty well, so that is extra incentive to pick Clemson. And Clemson is 3-1 against the spread this year, and the Noles are only 1-4. However, there is a big difference between this Thursday night game and last weeks for the Noles. 1) It is at Doak Campbell 2) No rain in the forecast 3) They realize they are not the Seminoles of the past and must play every down in order to win. Add all these up and I think FSU should be able to cover the 14 point spread. The spread opened up at 15, but is down to 14…so there are a lot of people going the other way on this one, but one thing about college football is emotion plays a huge factor in results, and Bobby probably got on them this week especially since his son is the opposing coach. This should be a high scoring affair either way.
    Take FSU –14 for the Bowden Bowl **

    Posted by Don at 01:29 PM
    October 01, 2002
    FSU vs. Miami seats

    orange_bowl_seats_200.jpg Just got this picture from Jonathan. It shows the view from our seats for the FSU vs. Miami game on Oct. 12th. FSU has been removed from the ranks of the "Undefeated", and is currently ranked 11th in both polls. Hopefully, they will have the "nothing to lose" attitude when playing the Canes in the Orange Bowl, and can pull off a historic upset. I'm not saying it is going to happen, but if IOWA can beat Penn St. and the Baltimore Ravens, which had scored a total of 7 points in there first two games, can put up 34 points against Denver...then anything is possible.

    Posted by Don at 10:24 AM