Yesterday was a big day in the world of sports. The college football season continued its kickoff. Seven hundred four NFL players lost their jobs or shots at a job. Baseball is entering the stretch run. The NBA and NHL are chillin'.
Action: Many, many players lost their jobs yesterday. Some notables: Cincinnati Bengals Rudi Johnson and Willie Anderson, Atlanta Falcon Joey Harrington, Philadelphia Eagle Jerome McDougle, San Francisco 49er Ashley Lelie, Tennessee Titan Roydell Williams, and Baltimore Raven Gary Stills.
Reaction: It seems like most of the cuts are former high-round picks that were trying to get a fresh start with a new team, such as Harrington or Lelie, and just couldn't cut it. The day where the NFL teams trim their rosters down to the minimum has become symbolic for wasted talent, lack of maturity, and horrible development. Johnson and Anderson will most likely catch on with new teams, but the others are more up in the air.
Action: Jacksonville Jaguars star running back Fred Taylor and former star wide receiver Jimmy Smith were both arrested in separate incidents within five hours of each other.
Reaction: This really has to suck for the Jaguars organization. The two faces of their franchise and two likeable members of their franchise could become a black eye for them. Smith was charged with DUI and possession of marijuana while Taylor was charged with disorderly conduct. According to Black and Teal, it does not seem like Taylor was involved in any illegal activity.
Action: Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver Chad Johnson has changed his name to Chad Ocho Cinco.
Reaction: Honestly, the only reaction I have to this is hysterical laughter. This story is so ridiculous that it's just funny. Johnson, er, Ocho Cinco, is a good wide receiver and a great personality. He probably isn't the exact type of guy that Marvin Lewis wants in the locker room, but the guy has a personality and likes to have fun. Which is cool with me.
Action: The New York Yankees lose to the Toronto Blue Jays 7-6 and drop to 11.5 games back of the Tampa Bay Rays in the AL East.
Reaction: I'm not going to call the Yankees dead. Yet. But I will say the division is done. The Yankees, barring a major, and I mean major, miracle, they're out of the division race, which will come down to the Boston Red Sox and Rays. However, they are seven games out of the wild-card behind Boston, so if the BoSox stumble, the Yanks could be in there. But if not, expect another flurry of offseason moves from the Steinbrenners.
Action: San Antonio Spurs guard Manu Ginobili will need surgery to repair a torn ligament in his left ankle.
Reaction: A lot of rag on Ginobili for being soft and for being a flopper. However, after seeing him play through his injury at the Olympics, he deserves to be looked at in a whole new way. He played through an obviously painful injury and helped lead his country to a bronze medal. He deserves some credit for this.
Action: The Alabama Crimson Tide dismantled the Clemson Tigers, 34-10.
Reaction: This is going to lead to more talk of SEC dominance. I have always been hesitant to delve into this subject, as I'm a firm believer in the "any given Sunday" philosophy, and I don't think the SEC will always win, but they proved to me last night that they are the class of the nation. The ACC's best could not compete with the SEC's fifth or sixth. So yeah.
Action: In the game I really wanted to watch last night, the Missouri Tigers held off the Illinois Fighting Illini for a 52-42 victory.
Reaction: This was the game of the year so far in the NCAA. Mizzou was up 31-13 at halftime, but let the Illini back into it. It took great plays by Jeremy Maclin and the defense for Missouri to pull this one out. Unfortunately, Maclin sprained his ankle, an injury that could severely hamper the Tigers. Both of these young teams are on the rise and should be forces to be reckoned with later this fall.
Action: Michigan loses their opener at home to Utah, 25-23.
Reaction: New coach Rich Rodriguez is in for a long year.