Rock M Roundtable!

I smell a mid-July rally!  Maybe!  All I know is...the questions are longer this time.  That means they're better, right?

1. So the NCAA is throwing its weight around right now regarding the whole "sports agents paying college players" issue. They’ve hit the Pac-10 and are investigating schools in the ACC and SEC…

My question, then, is 3-fold:

a) Do you expect the NCAA to expand its investigation into a program in the Big 12?

b) If so, which program would you expect to be the likeliest target?
and, I know none of us want to think about something like this, but

c) Is there any chance Mizzou ends up a paof this investigation?
You know, assuming the NCAA decides to eradicate this whole issue once and for all and penalize every program with even a whiff of impropriety.

2. How do I convince my girlfriend to root for Mizzou Men's Basketball?  She is a former college athlete (she played basketball for Wyoming when they won the NIT a couple years ago).

She refuses to support or even acknowledge that the team is good. In her mind, its just "create havoc, drive to the lane, fouls, and full court pressure that doesn’t work on big teams capable of preparing for it. They don’t have any real shooter (Kimmeh is not legit yet) and they don’t play ‘Team Basketball’ i.e. they play one-on-one a lot and rarely have a real half-court offense (just look at the games they lost in the last two NCAA tournaments)." She also does not have a high opinion of Mike Anderson’s recruiting.

Basically what I’m looking for is a clear argument that point-by-point outlines why she should change her mind and give MU Basketball a chance. This has been a main point of contention regarding sports in our relationship (she’s all for MU Football). Perhaps you could expand upon the subject and address other arguments against rooting for Mizzou. This would be a great post I could use to debate with her since my ability to argue basketball with her is underwhelming at best.

3. I just got done watching the first 3 seasons of 30 Rock on Netflix. Liz Lemon – Hot nerd, or hottest nerd?

4. What is your favorite war movie and why?

Michael Atchison: Going to be late to the party today.

ZouDave: Me too, bheading into a meeting right now

Bill C.: Beheading in a meeting??

ghtd36: A beheading in a meeting? Damn. Corporate America really is cutthroat.

ghtd36: Let's rock this.

1- Yes, I expect the NCAA to expand its investigation to the Big XII at some point. It's never been a matter of if; it's a matter of when. It's not like impropriety just stops at the border of Big XII country.

If I had to take a guess, I'd expect it to come down on someone like Oklahoma: prestigious program with a big-name coach that could feasibly take a substantial step backward in the coming years, while still maintaining the "NFL factory" visage.

And yes, Mizzou is absolutely in play. Fair or not, it's a school with a history of NCAA violations, so there's always going to be that red flag. That said, I think Mizzou earned some brownie points with the NCAA by being ahead of the curve on the whole setting-up-a-compliance-department thing after the Quinpocolypse.

2- First of all, tell your girlfriend that I said hello.

Now, on to the topic at hand. It seems to be a total non sequitur that your girlfriend who played women's basketball -- a sport that not only requires sound fundamentals, but whose game is almost solely based on sound fundamentals -- would fail to acknowledge one of the most fundamentally sound squads in the nation. It's a team built on defense; I don't think there's any questioning that. In a sport that has become as much about outscoring opponents as stopping them, Mizzou is an old school mentality team that prides itself on stopping the ball first and foremost.

As for the argument about the offense, she really couldn't contradict herself any more. They don't have any real shooter, yet they play one-on-one a lot? Then how do they score? I'm not going to disagree that they lack a true shooter; we all said last year that Mizzou was a scorer short.

But to say that they don't play "team basketball" would seem to indicate that they just run isolation constantly to the shooter they don't have, which couldn't be farther from the truth. Nine players averaged at least an assist a game last year for Mizzou. For national champion, play the game the right way, gritty, fundamentally sound, Coach K-tested, mother-approved Duke? Four players with an assist a game.

They drive the lane, sure, but everyone drives the lane. That's like saying, "God, I hate the Yankees; they bunt."

I'm not going to argue with her about recruiting; that's subjective.

Basically, my argument is that she's wrong. But do tell her that I said hello.

3. Ahem.

And she was on The freakin' Wire. QED.

4. Star Wars. Breathtaking visuals.

The Beef: Looks like I picked a hell of a week to be coaxed back into a roundtable…these questions go WELL beyond my attention span.  So…the longer the question, the shorter my answer

#1a – yes
#1b – Oklahoma State
#1c – yes

#2 – Find a new girlfriend…clearly the one you have is dumb (about Anderson’s recruiting at least, and about her understanding of TEAM defense, as I am guessing she was evidently far too slow a player to grasp what it is Mizzou does). Yeah…that’s what you get for a long, drawn-out story about someone you are slumming with from a standpoint of basketball IQ.

#3 – Gonna go with hot nerd, though I still have occasional longing to see Fey back at the Weekend Update desk.  Her cameo for the Betty White episode (as with most things in that episode) was great.

#4 – I will say Glory, but I am REALLY not a war movie person.  Never seen Saving Private Ryan in its entirety, and never seen a single episode of anything HBO has done.

ZouDave: Typos FTW!

First, welcome back BEEF!  Glad to see you back among us, making it happen.  When's Baby Beef's debut?

1 - They sort of did already with kansas, and I wouldn't be surprised if they went back there again to "tie up loose ends" with some of the latest scandals.  I don't think they'd target Texas because I think Texas is still considered pretty untouchable, but it's not out of the question.

There's always a chance your school can end up in an investigation, but with the two coaches we have running our major programs I say bring it on.  We could have faced some problems with the whole text message thing from the basketball program within the last year and it couldn't have been less of a problem, because Mike Anderson runs a clean program.  Gary Pinkel has never even had the appearance of impropriety to my knowledge, and he's such a stubborn and straight-arrowed person that I think he'd refuse to get involved in things that would get him in trouble simply because that's not how Don James did it.

2 - Just find a girlfriend that isn't retarded.

3 - Hot nerd.  I'll have to look around for the hottest nerd, but I think I'm going to start with Danica McKellar:

4 - Wow, now that's just an awesome question.  What qualifies a war movie?  Are we talking wars that the USA was involved in, or can we go back to movies like Spartacus or Braveheart?  Or something more fictional like Gladiator, that is more representative of the time as opposed to portraying real events?

If I can say "Band of Brothers" as my answer, then that's my answer.  It's not a movie, but it's the length of like 3 movies and it's certainly movie quality.  But if we're just talking about actual theater release movies, answering the question literally...

Medieval-ish Wars - Braveheart
Revolutionary War - The Patriot (not sure I have much to choose from here)
US Civil War - Glory
World War I - All Quiet on the Western Front
World War II - Saving Private Ryan
Vietnam War - Full Metal Jacket or We Were Soldiers...can't call this one
Modern Wars - Blackhawk Down

Overall favorite movie from this list - Braveheart

ZouDave: Ok...I should have read Seth's response first before truly welcoming him back.

YOU'VE NEVER SEEN SAVING PRIVATE RYAN OR BAND OF BROTHERS?!?!?!?!!!!!!!!!!!!11111oneoneone!!!?????ZOMG?!

I.....I don't........I can't........it's.......you.........elephant.........what?

The Beef: I suppose in saying I am not a fan, it really means they don’t do anything for me.  I’ve seen the opening of SPR, and the scene is impressive from the standpoint of its enormity, but it does nothing for me.  The depiction of war does not cull the same feelings it does in many others, so it is not a genre I really spend any time in.

And to update the Roundtable…Baby The Beef is due is 6 short days…and the Tailgate Queen and I are literally down to the "any minute now" stage.

ZouDave: Well that just seems foreign as an idea to me, Beef, but I guess I'll have to just accept that explanation.

Best wishes to you and the Tailgate Queen and the soon to be little one!  Will be praying for everyone to remain happy and healthy, can't wait to see pictures, and I know without asking that you guys will both be at full speed for the McNeese State home opener on 9/11/10!

The Beef: Consider it unpatriotic or unmanly or whatever…but I have little to no draw to the military and likely would come off as aloof to many regarding my feelings on those who defend Am’r’ca and our freedoms.  Just is what it is, but it certainly seems to project to my movie tastes.

At this point, we plan to have the kid with us at the MU/ILL game as sort of a test run.  Both my family and my in-laws will be joining us for the McNeese State game, and we will go from there.  We realize our Friday nights in Como before a game are pretty much done, and it will make for a lot of loooooong Saturdays, but we are going to try to do the best we can.  Some tailgates may just not start quite as early as they used to  :-)

ZouDave: Well for me it's not about my patriotism or defending Am'r'ca or anything, but I do happen to love those kinds of action movies.  Now, I also do have draws to the military (especially with The Captain as a father) so I'm sure that has more than helped shape my tastes for these things but I can be just as happy watching a war movie taking place in 10th century England as I can watching one about USA's fight against the Nazis.  I love the conflict, I love the heroism, I love the action, I love the drama.

Band of Brothers is so much more than a war movie, though, because so little of the 10+ hours actually takes place on a battlefield.  Getting to learn about the men of Easy Company is really a privilege more than anything else.  Those men are American treasures, every one of them.

ghtd36: I can vouch for Band of Brothers. It's excellent.

The Beef: Agree to disagree on this one, as my saying any more will just further drive an already crappy Roundtable further down the drain

ZouDave: I don't agree to that!

Bill C.: I don't agree to your face.

ZouDave: Your brain's the one with the shell on it.

Bill C.: I'm rubber and you're glue?

ghtd36: And Beef, I'm not a parent. But I feel like I should offer you the same advice I read on the Internet once:

You only give the baby whiskey when they're teething.

The Beef: I appreciate the clarification, as I thought the whiskey was for me whilst the kid was teething

ZouDave: oh there's no limitation on when you can be administered whiskey.  Unless you're doing the breastfeeding...

ghtd36: Allow me to offer the first derailment of this already swimming roundtable:

Go see Inception. Right now. Don't even finish this roundtable. Go right now. Quit your job if you must. It immediately vaulted into my top 5 ever.

ZouDave: You're not the only person who's had that opinion of the movie.  I know nothing about the movie (which is the way I like it, I go in with zero expectations).  I will try to see it this weekend, though.  Is that acceptable?

ghtd36: That is acceptable. And really, I'm trying very hard to keep from overhyping the movie, because there's no way it can live up to the amount of hyperbole heaped upon it; I call it Napoleon Dynamite Syndrome.

Suffice to say that I believe you will enjoy it.

RPT: 1. Yes, investigations will absolutely expand to the Big 12's footprint, though I refuse to speculate on which program will be the target. Like ghtd said, we're not immune here either. No matter how well a program is run, it's sickening how easy it is for a player to do something stupid like attending an agent's party (Bama's Marcel Dareus) or even doing some that seems  illegal then lying about it (Dez Bryant). That's why, even though I agree with ZouDave's sentiments about Pinkel and the way the program is run, I think it's really out of everyone's hands but the agents and the players.

2. A former women's basketball player who does not appreciate watching Mizzou's brand of basketball tells me everything I need to know about women's basketball.

But in all seriousness, I understand people that don't appreciate the aesthetic value of Mizzou basketball. It's blue collar basketball that'll leave you bruised. It's not a fundamentals training video and it's not five white guys playing the Princeton offense on black and white film setting up set shots. Here's the thing though: Mizzou's style is an equalizer. Some systems, especially ones that might be more pleasing to the eye, require supreme talent. You can label the Fastest 40 Minutes a gimmick if you want. I'd rather have a gimmick that wins than a "normal" system tha produces middling results.

3. Olivia Munn in this conversation?

4. I'll defer to others on this one.

Doug: Really? You had to go for the longest questions?

1 - I think with the NCAA anything is possible. They have all the money and the vast majority of the power. I also think the NCAA is more than a little pissed off with the BCS at the moment, and any chance to tag a traditional football power like USC or Florida, and they will jump at the chance.

Eventually, someone in the Big 12 will be investigated, it's only a matter of time. And, the most likely candidates in my mind, are Oklahoma and Texas. Big programs, lots of boosters, lots of money, and plenty that can go on under the table, which Oklahoma has already proved once recently.

And, yes, Missouri could become the target, but thankfully for the Tigers, they pumped a bunch of money into regulation oversight, just like KU did. I'm fairly certain the NCAA does not care if a school is getting dicked out of money by it's own employees. That's why I would put it at a much higher probability that the NCAA starts sniffing around in Manhattan before Lawrence or Columbia.

2 - Has Mrs. Bill C. met your "girlfriend" yet?

I do see where she's coming from. At times, the Tigers can play a beautiful sort of up-tempo game, raining in threes, running the break, forcing turnovers. But, when they come up against a more talented team, it turns into an absolute nightmare on the court. Multiple fouls, called and uncalled, shot-clock draining possessions, and 16 point first halves. Just really everything you hate about Big 10 basketball on display.

3 - Yeah, I'll have to second the nomination of Danica McKellar.

4 - I do prefer Band of Brothers, and really want to see The Pacific when it comes out on DVD. But, for my money, Black Hawk Down is an unbelievable representation of the modern battlefield.

ZouDave: The best endorsement I ever heard on Blackhawk Down came from one of my closest friends, whom I grew up with, that went into the Air Force out of high school and is still in today.  He's been deployed 10 times in his now 16 years in, been in Iraq 3 times, been in Bosnia, been in Korea, etc.  He told me he watched the movie once and will never watch it again, because it was too real.

That's worth noting.

Bill C.: I have to veto Olivia Munn.  She's hot, but I get the impression she has marketed herself toward nerds more than she actually IS a nerd...VETO.

Michael Atchison: 1. This is a nearly impossible question to answer.  I think people fundamentally misunderstand the way that NCAA enforcement works.  They operate with a relatively small staff that oversees hundreds of institutions (there are 300+ Division One basketball programs, and lots of DII and DIII schools).  Virtually every investigation starts with a source outside the infractions staff, be it self-reporting by a school, a tip from another program or person, or a news story.  Do I expect a Big 12 program to be investigated at some point in the future?  Sure, I can all but guarantee it.  But I can’t tell you which school or how it will come about.  If you want odds, look at two things:  (1) How other schools feel about a particular coach (I would imagine that Scott Drew is the most likely guy to get ratted out by another program), and (2) How much fan intensity there is around a program.  If a lot of people care fanatically about a particular football or basketball team, the odds increase that someone is going to cross a line.  Finally, is there any chance that Missouri ends up as part of investigation?  Our history tells us that there’s always a chance, but I do feel good about the people in charge of the revenue programs.  I’d be very surprised to find Mizzou at the heart of any significant scandal in the short term.

2. I think other people have answered this question pretty sufficiently.  Clearly, this relationship can’t last.  It’s OK for a significant other to be indifferent to Mizzou basketball, but to be antagonistic is a deal-breaker.  A few other thoughts:  If Mike Anderson can’t recruit, he apparently has inferior talent.  And if he has inferior talent, and they don’t play team basketball, the only explanation for all the games they win must be sorcery.  Also, if ranking at the top nationally in assists and A:TO doesn’t convince her that they play team basketball, she doesn’t want to be convinced.  As for their style not working on big teams capable of preparing for it, I suppose I would refer her to the coaches at Kansas, Kansas State, Texas, Oklahoma State, Memphis, Illinois, Marquette, Clemson and others who have lost to the Tigers in the past couple of years.

Finally, there are no gimmicks.  There are rules.  You play within them.  The funniest thing I ever hear in sports is "yeah, they beat us, but they had to use that crazy style to do it."  That’s what the British said about the Yanks in the Revolution.

3. Hottest nerd.  I want to go to there.

4. I don’t know if it’s my favorite, but I’ve never been as emotionally shattered walking out of a movie theater as I was after I saw Platoon.

ghtd36: You know what's going to be fun?

Football season, and the subsequent alcohol abuse that comes with it.

/will attempt to black out at Mizzou-Illinois game

RPT: Sobriety:

Bill C.: Since I haven't responded to much yet, I'll just say that I did see Saving Private Ryan in the theater...a) my mom was crying 90 seconds into the movie, b) I thought it was great, and c) I don't ever feel the need to see it again.

The biggest issue with the agents thing is, as has been said here, a lot of it is completely out of coaches' control.  A lot of it is relying on the players themselves to avoid these things, and...well...20-year old males are not usually the best decision-makers on the planet.

I do love, though, that Nick Saban is ALL SORTS OF PISSED OFF about this (now that it might have snagged one of his players too)...says agents should be banned from even scouting players and they should do it all at the Combine.  Good luck getting them out of the building, of course, but if Saban's railing on it, there might actually be a change...

ZouDave: Once again, Atch pulls out the best line of the discussion re: Brits vs Yanks.  Atch, you really ought to consider a future in writing.  Not sure if that's something that interests you or not but you may be missing some opportunities there.

It is always crazy to me when fans/teams complain that they were beaten by a "system".  No, you were beaten by a team that (as Atch so perfectly put it) was playing the game completely within the rules.  How odd that people will say Mizzou beats you with a gimmicky system (both in football and basketball) but yet when Mizzou lost to Navy in the Bowl Game last year it wasn't that we were beaten by a "system", it was just simply that we got beat and therefore sucked.  Isn't the Triple Option just as much a system as the Spread?  Is the only thing that's not a "system" the kind of football they play in the Big Ten?  Because if so, Nebraska will be right at home I guess.

(Two hours later...)

The Beef: So this is what I have been missing?

ghtd36: RPT killed a guy.

RPT: No, Beef. You have it backwards. You're what the Roundtable's been missing.

Now save this one and we'll call it square.

The Beef: Well let’s be honest here…I bring very little to the table on these to begin with.

I don’t have the stats like Bill C

I don’t have the pop culture like…well…just about anyone.

I don’t have the music/reading love like some.

I don’t have the movie taste of most (already covered)

In the end, all I can do is this…

ghtd36: Thank you for your courage, Beef.

The Beef: I am just a man with very little to do on his last day in the office for awhile

(30 minutes later...)

Bill C.: In other news...SWEET MERCIFUL CRAP AM I TIRED OF 90s > RAIN > 90s > RAIN > 90s ... this is the most miserable summer I can remember since the last one I spent in DC ...

ghtd36: 102-degree-every-day Dallas waves.

Bill C.: I'll take 102 degrees and half the humidity.  Sign me up.

(An hour later...)

ZouDave: I just got back from running 30 100-meter wind sprints in this heat, so blow me where the pampers is!

The Beef: Why were 30 different guys chasing you over short distances?

ZouDave: because I'm that damn awesome

Michael Atchison: It was 15 different guys, and they had to rest in the middle.

ghtd36: Dave, that's the worst case of scoreboarding I've ever seen.

OOH LOOK AT ME! I RAN A LOT ON MY OWN VOLITION IN THE HEAT! LOOK HOW AWESOME I AM!

In related news, I just ate another 100-calorie pack of Cheez-Its in the air conditioning. Suck it.

(An hour later...)

RPT: MEANWHILE IN WASHINGTON DC:

My office has been without power for three hours. And you know that DC heat Bill was referencing?

Yep, it's been a fun afternoon here just outside our nation's capital.

Michael Atchison: Dude gets his dream internship and bitches about the heat.

The Beef: Next he is going to tell us how he cant take all the attractive women in the office complaining about their shirts sticking to their sweating bodies

ghtd36: For his next act, RPT will complain that the clouds are too puffy.

Michael Atchison: Reminds me of the big leaguers complaining about the All-Star game being in Kansas City.  "Sure, I make $12 million a year and people worship me, but on one Monday in July 2012, I’m going to be subjected to the humiliation of having to drink and hit on hot women in a bar on the Country Club Plaza."

RPT: I think Beef overestimates the female:male ratio at an office housing a professional sports franchise.

But, point/meme well taken. Rabble rabble.

ghtd36: RPT: "Gaaaah, this beer is WAY too cold."

ZouDave: This reminds me of one of my favorite Chandler Bing quotes from friends:

"Oh, I know, this must be so hard.  'Oh no, two women love me.  They're both gorgeous and sexy.  My wallet's too small for my fifties AND MY DIAMOND SHOES ARE TOO TIGHT!' "

RPT: Dave just quoted FRIENDS?

Can someone un-lame the Roundtable?

The Beef:

Bill C.: I was going to make an "And boom goes the dynamite" reference here, but I felt it might be misinterpreted.

ZouDave: $20 says Atch has no idea who that is

Michael Atchison: Is "random girl on the internet" not right?

ZouDave: it's a very specific girl, both on the internet and in many adult movies

Michael Atchison: Your sister?

Bill C.: AND BOOM GOES THE DYNAMITE.

ghtd36: MY GOD HURRY PUBLISH BEFORE DAVE HAS A REBUTTAL.

ZouDave:

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