Thursday, December 27, 2007

Counting on Brad and Brad's pals

We don't like rooting for the Cowboys. We would rather not root for Brad Johnson. But, if the Vikings have any chance of making it to the playoffs this year, they need Brad to carry the Cowboys to a win over the Redskins on Sunday.

Oh, the Vikings also have to go into Denver and beat the Broncos. Good luck to them.

Monday, December 24, 2007

When you can't adjust and you don't know the rules, it might be time to admit you are in over your head.

Stick a fork in the Vikings -- and maybe in Brad Childress. Both could be done.

Last night couldn’t have gone any worse for Childress and his football team. He blew a challenge call (when doesn’t he?), got outcoached when he didn’t make any offensive adjustments until the fourth quarter, and he wrongly accused the refs of missing a call (the Vikings did have 12 men on the field and the Redskins didn’t sub out any of their players, like Childress claimed.)

So, that leaves us with the following scenario and little chance for the Vikings to get into the playoffs:

The Vikings and the Redskins are both 8-7 and tied for the final wild-card spot.
The Vikings can make the playoffs if they win at Denver and Washington loses at home to Dallas. If both teams win next week, Washington wins the tiebreaker (head-to-head).

The Vikings don’t deserve to make the playoffs and at this point, I think we should be happy that they won’t be here. Chilly would find a way to blow another game and Tarvaris Jackson is the new Rex Grossman -- we really don’t need to see him on the road in the playoffs.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Waiting on Sunday night.

The wait is almost over and tonight we find out if the Vikings are for real. After watching the Purple beat the Bears last Monday night, we weren’t sure if we could take another night game on national television.

And, it wasn’t just the bad football that bothered us. Seeing Adrian Peterson's dad in the stands made me very uncomfortable. I am sure he’s a great guy despite the cocaine trafficking conviction and everything, but he looks like he’s 23 years-old. The father of pro football player shouldn’t look like he could be playing right along with his son. That was bizarre.

Nelson Peterson -- Adrian's Dad:

Hopefully tonight is a little more entertaining on the football side of things. I don’t want to be counting the days until pitchers and catchers report, but a loss tonight means the end for the Vikings and we can focus on spring training.

The bad news for the Vikings is the fact that they aren’t facing Kyle Orton again tonight. But the good news is -- we still have Adrian Peterson and an amazing defense. As long as Tarvaris Jackson doesn’t do his Playing for Pizza Rick Dokery impersonation, we should be fine.

Vikings win 23-20 in overtime.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

The Mariners will regret this by May 15.

Starting pitching is hard to find. Just ask the Seattle Mariners, who gave Carlos Silva a 4-year $44 million deal yesterday. UPDATE: It's a 4-year deal for $48 million. Yikes.

We’ve watched Silva pitch in Minnesota for the last four years and we can honestly say that he wasn’t worth $44 million during that stretch. He wasn’t worth $4 million a year during that stretch.

But, in this day and age, if you are a starter who can log 200 innings a year, you are going to get paid. He’s going to make about $1 million per win next year for Seattle and if they think that is money well spent, more power to them.

Just for fun, here are Silva’s career numbers.
Games: 259
Games Started: 125
Hits: 1,122
BB’s: 171
K’s: 395
W-L: 55-46
ERA: 4.31

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Paynesville, MN gets hosed again.

Back in the good old days, the Twins Winter Caravan showed up in my hometown of Paynesville, MN and folks came from all over central Minnesota to shake hands with Mike Smithson, Kirby Puckett, and Danny Gladden.

Now, “cities” like Hutchinson, Little Falls, Cold Spring, and Staples are a part of the caravan, but my beloved Paynesville isn’t anywhere on the list. What gives? Don’t they know Paynesville is baseball country?

Tony Oliva, Craig Monroe, and Dick Bremer don’t know what they are missing.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Pro Bowling

Seven Minnesota Vikings are headed to Hawaii for the Pro Bowl. Wow, with that limited amount of talent, its amazing Coach Childress was able to win 8 games this year. Talk about overachieving.

The starters from the Vikings include Adrian Peterson, Tony Richardson, Steve Hutchinson, Darren Sharper, and the Williams Wall – Kevin and Pat Williams. Matt Birk was named to the team, but not as a starter.

Tarvaris Jackson wasn’t named to the team. He was robbed.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Priority shift… to the Max.

While the gal and I are in lock-down mode at Cold Omaha headquarters, the world outside these walls continues to move forward. Sure, the inside of our house looks like a combination of a day-care center and my old condo after a long night of poker, but we can’t imagine a better way to live.

Up until last weekend, Buddy the pug was our little baby and keeping him in line and happy was the most challenging part of the day. Now he's basically feeding himself and opening up the door on his own to go outside to the bathroom.

We are focused entirely on Maxwell, his feeding schedules, his dirty diapers, and his crying fits. We have enough time in the day to sleep for three hours, do a load of laundry, and maybe clean the dishes out of the dish washer. While the rest of you are watching football, reading about the Twins adding two new infielders, and rehashing the news that Jessica Alba is pregnant, we are busy making sure Max didn’t just blow up another diaper and that he is, in fact, putting on enough weight according to the charts at our pediatrician's office.

All of those other things (Buddy the pug, the Twins, football and Jessica Alba) are on my radar too – probably not in the same way or to the same degree that they were before the little man arrived, but I am trying to pay attention to things not related to keeping him fed, warm, and scream-free. It’s not easy, but I am trying. By the way, the Vikings are 1-0 in the Maxwell era and we are hoping to go 2-0 tomorrow night against the Bears. He says its a lock, I am not convinced.

I don’t want to go into all the specifics about Max being born. The gal put together all of her thoughts on the matter in her blog -- and frankly, I can’t add anything to what she has said, because she said it so well. In that space she gives me way too much credit for doing what I am doing. She's the one who has gone above and beyond, now I am just trying to play catch-up.

What I can tell you is that being a father and seeing Max for the first time (and every time since) really helps me understand that none of this is about me anymore. Before he was born, I heard it all the time…”your life will change, things will be different” – I understood the words, but not the meaning. Now I do.

If you aren’t a parent, you can still sort of understand where I am coming from, but I will have to make an analogy that is tough to wrap your mind around.

But here goes –

Imagine the worst pain you have ever felt, whether it’s the loss of a loved one, getting kicked in the groin, or seeing the Vikings lose in the 1998 NFC Championship Game. Take whatever you equate with pain and sit with that emotion for awhile, let it ruminate. Remember how hard that was and how much you just wanted to bury your head in the sand? Now, multiply that feeling by ten and turn the emotion exactly 180 degrees so all of that pain becomes pure joy. That’s kind of how it feels to be a dad.

The gal went through hell getting this kid out and I am proud of what she did. She’s strong. Max is strong. The process didn’t go the way we had planned and I guess that’s been the best lesson of all – we can’t control any of this and being a parent will make us go with the flow in a way we have never really had to attempt before. We are all doing well and that is the most important thing. We couldn’t ask for more than what we have and I can’t believe how lucky I am to have this little guy in my life.

Thanks to everyone who has called, written, sent text messages, and letters in the mail. I promise we will get back to you once we get to the point where we know for sure what we are doing. In the meantime, keep calling and checking in – keep those texts and emails coming – we love to hear from everyone and we know you are thinking about us.

We are thinking about you too. Now I better go and find Buddy - last time I saw him he was sizing up the Diaper Genie...

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Taking a break

The little man arrived on Saturday, so we at Cold Omaha are going to take a break for a bit and get to know him. We will be back soon, just not sure how soon it will be -- in the meantime, enjoy Disstraktor.

Oh wait, they don't update their site over there either.

Monday, December 3, 2007

What are the Vikings doing to us?

First, the Vikings destroy the Giants 41-10 at the Meadowlands. And then they come home and beat the Lions 42-10, while looking like they actually have a "kick ass" offense. Adrian Peterson is back. Sid Rice looks like a legit NFL wide receiver, and Tarvaris Jackson isn't killing his team with underthrows, overthrows, and turnovers.

They can't win four more games and make the playoffs, can they?

Don't get your hopes up. Don't get your hopes up. Don't get your hopes up.

We can't help getting our hopes up.

Four more games to go and they all look winnable -- they have the 49ers, the Bears, the Redskins, and the Broncos left on the schedule. The first three are very beatable. Denver lost to the Raiders yesterday so the Vikes will at least have a shot at beating them. Could it happen?

Don't get your hopes up.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Delmon Young is a Twin. Holy crap!

The Twins sent Matt Garza packing and in exchange for him, they received a player who could very well be the face of the franchise for years to come.

Delmon Young is a stud. He’s a great player. The Twins don’t get players in trades like this. Never. Young will easily replace Torii Hunter’s offense and will strike fear in the heart of every umpire who dares to call a chest high fastball strike three.

Sure, Young was suspended for 50 games last year – he threw a bat at an umpire. You know what I say to that? It was just a lapse in judgment. He’s going to be fine – Twins fans will LOVE him. I promise.

This was a fantastic first move of the off-season for the Twins. Billy Smith gets an A+ so far. The only downside to this deal is that the Twins weren’t able to unload Juan Rincon’s fat contract and fragile elbow. They had to give up Jason Bartlett (who cares) but they also lost Eduardo Morlan. At some point very soon, Morlan is going to be a top-notch set-up guy or closer. He can hit 100 mph on the gun and seems to have sick stuff. The Twins didn’t want to deal him and would have rather given up Rincon. But, you just got Delmon Young, so we deal with it.

Plus, the Twins are getting Jason Pridie back, whom they love, but had to cut last spring and they also get journeyman SS Brendan Harris. Harris might end up starting at shortstop if the Twins can’t coax the Yankees to give up Robinson Cano as part of a Johan Santana deal. If the Twins do get Cano, you will see Alexi Casilla and the light-hitting Nicky Punto at short next year. We will take that if Cano is manning the right side of the infield. If not, then the Twins needs to fix the shortstop position as well.

But again – we got Delmon Young…so it’s all gravy at this point.

Young and Garza are the prizes in this deal and it is great to see the Twins finally giving up a little bit of pitching in order to get a big bat in return.

Crowd loving it.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Observations from a long football weekend.

The Monday after a four-day weekend is always tough. There is a lot about which to talk, so let’s ramble.

Isn’t it funny that Frank Caliendo is supposed to look like John Madden in that picture, but he actually looks exactly like Ted Kennedy?

His sketch comedy show, by the way, was a lot of sketch and not much comedy. He’s amazing at impressions, but for whatever reason it doesn’t seem to work over the course of a half hour sketch show.

He has three more shows to get it right – and that’s it for the year. The writer’s strike is shutting down Frank TV after only four shows. No doubt TBS will still air all four shows every day of the week in between the same 10 episodes of “King of Queens” and the same 6 episodes of “Yes Dear.”

Speaking of impersonations, Eli Manning did a spot-on Joey Harrington yesterday, didn’t he?

I actually liked the Vikings chances against the Giants. It’s the kind of game they had no business winning, but for whatever reason they always seem to play well in that kind of situation. Everyone needs to stop talking about the playoffs; this is still the same team who got destroyed three weeks ago in Green Bay 34-0. The only thing the Vikings did yesterday was make their draft position weaker.

However, I was impressed with Brad Childress yesterday. It was the first time this year he didn’t call a timeout in order to challenge a play that wasn’t challengeable. He’s really improving as a coach.

I am pretty excited about having the NFL Network. The Packers play the Cowboys on Thursday night and it should be a pretty good game. The only downside has to be listening to Bryant Gumbel doing play-by-play. He’s terrible. I would rather listen to Greg Gumbel take a dump than Brant Gumble call a sporting event.

I was really enjoying the “Brett Favre is washed up” era – what happened to that anyway?

The best part about Thanksgiving Day? Stuffing. The worst part about the Sunday after Thanksgiving? Stuffing.

Do you think the Vikings defense is going to tell Eli Manning he can have a “safe word” the next time they play?

I don’t mind watching Sunday Night Football in America and I don’t mind Faith Hill. But, I don’t like when those two things are combined.
Speaking of SNF – whenever Andrea Kramer appears on our TV, the gal calls her a “poor man’s Edie Falco” and it makes me laugh every time.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Hot Stove Action

Torii Hunter is an Angel and we are okay with that. Even though the Twins only offered him a 3-year deal for $45 million, they wouldn’t have been able to keep him had they offered 5 years.

And, they were smart to not offer 5 years because the Torii Hunter you saw last year won’t be the Torii Hunter you see in four years. He’ll never hit that many homeruns again and he won’t play defense at a high level three years from now. Thanks for the memories and let’s move on.

I ran into this stat comparison while searching around looking for some Twins rumors. Scott Baker, Johan Santana and Matt Garza are all attracting interest in chat rooms and there are several teams who would like any of the three pitchers on the front end of their respective rotations.

Here’s an interesting look at what Scott Baker did compared to Curt Schilling last year. Now you know why Baker is gathering interest. The latest rumor is a deal with Boston that would send Coco Crisp and another player to the Twins in exchange for Baker. After seeing this table, I am not so sure I would take that deal:

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

The Golden Gophers can win on the road!

The Gopher’s basketball team won a road game last night against a real Division 1 opponent. I can’t remember the last time I wrote those words.

Tubby and his squad went into Ames, Iowa last night and took apart an Iowa State team that actually has a decent chance to play in the postseason.

Lawrence McKenzie led the way for the Gophers with 15 second half points and 20 for the game. He doesn’t seem to miss Dan Monson much at all.

One side note -- has anyone figured out the Big Ten Network yet? Now that the gal has sworn off the overpriced and shittastic customer service of Charter cable TV forever, we made the switch to DirectTV. So far so good –we get the NFL Network, Big Ten Network, and all systems are a go.

But, I can’t for the life of me figure out how/why the Big Ten Network schedules games the way they do. Shouldn’t they still have regional programming so we can watch the games in our market? Iowa State and Minnesota can’t get any more in my market and I still didn’t get to see the game. Not good times.

The only downside to DirectTV is no more Minneapolis/St Paul news at 5:00, 6:00 or 10:00 p.m. If you’ve seen local TV newscasts in any other Minnesota market, you know how miserable I am right now. But, having the NFL Network and at some point having the Gopher games on the BTN will be worth it.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Chester gets a chance.

Chester Taylor ran for 164 yards yesterday, but it seemed like he should have and could have had more.

The Vikings won the game, but it didn’t really seem like a win. The team left a lot of points (and yards) on the field and they turned the ball over five times. Plus, the Raiders had a chance to come back and tie it with less than a minute left and probably would have if anybody other than Daunte Culpepper had been under center.

The Vikes travel to New York next week to take on the Giants. After getting blown out and shut out on the road last week at Green Bay, I can’t imagine how bad things are going to get at the Meadowlands.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

The Twins should sign Fukudome.

Kosuke Fukudome is a free agent outfielder from Japan and the Twins have no chance to sign him.

However, we think it would be cool if he played for the Twins, because well…Fukudome is a pretty cool name and since the Twins are getting a new stadium, Fukudome is what all Twins fans will be saying in 2010.

Here’s a list of the Top 50 free agents available in the big leagues this off-season, at least according to some random “insider” from ESPN. Fukudome is number 10. Somehow Kyle Lohse is number 11, Torii Hunter is number 12, and Carlos Silva is number 13. Who did these rankings, Sid Hartman?

The Twins won’t be signing any of those guys – unfortunately Fukudome included.

Not to say the sky is falling, but the sky might be falling.

Today is the start of MLB free agent signing – and the Twins figure to be in the news a lot over the next few weeks. The team started things off today by trading for aging veteran outfielder Craig Monroe.

Twins fans everywhere are going to be justified in asking the question:

“Is the entire Twins front office doing meth?”

Yes, the sky is falling in Twins Territory people. Torii Hunter is going to sign someplace else, probably with the White Sox. Nick Punto is going to be the full-time second baseman and Johan Santana is going to get traded.

Of course rather than trade for Miguel Cabrera or sign Mike Lowell, the Twins answer to all of this negativity is to trade for the 30-year-old Monroe, who hit just over .200 last season with the Tigers and Cubs.

I agree with this move if you want to have him as a fourth outfielder. But do you really want to pay a guy $4 million a year to hit .200 and sit on the bench every other day? Lew Ford would have done that for the league minimum.

And about Santana -- the Twins MUST trade him now. They should trade him today if they can, but no later than mid-December. It’s obvious to everyone that they aren’t going to be able to re-sign him. Rumors are flying that the Mets are willing to part with Jose Reyes or David Wright in order to get Santana. That’s a good place to start.

The Red Sox, Yankees, and Dodgers also have loads of talent and they want Santana -- so the Twins could actually get fair value for him.

It’s a make or break month for the Twins and I can’t remember a time when the franchise had this many questions to answer.

So far…I don’t like what I am seeing.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Peterson's injury is career ending. For Brad Childress.

Adrian Peterson is going to be fine. He has a sprained knee and could come back at some point this season. He shouldn't come back this year, but he could. Just rest the knee and come back 100% next year as there is nothing to play for anymore.

The Peterson injury is devastating to Brad Childress and he now has very little chance at coming back to coach this team next year. Peterson was his only hope for winning another 2-3 games this season. Without him, the Purple might not win again this year. See you later Chilly.

Let’s have a fantasy team meeting.

That guy you see above is The Dicker. He is the owner of the fantasy football team “Richard’s Rampage” and well…over the last few weeks I have run his team into the ground.

The Dicker asked me for some friendly advice a few weeks ago and after a quick discussion on why I knew more about football than he did, he agreed to let me play coach/GM to his owner and take his team to a hallowed MMF Football Championship.

When he hired me as coach/GM, the Rampage was 3-1 and things were looking great. Five weeks later the team is on the verge of going 4-6 and grasping for anybody and everybody on the waiver wire in hopes of turning it around.

I am a great fantasy mind. I’ve won my share of Super Bowls as owner/coach/GM of the “Cover Two Dats” and of course won back-to-back-to-back fantasy baseball championships from 2004-2006. I know what I am doing in the fantasy world.

I called a team meeting today to find out just where Richard’s Rampage went wrong and to hopefully find a way to right the ship before it’s too late.

Here’s what transpired.

ME: I know it’s not typical for a fantasy team to meet like this, but we have to figure out why we suck. We can’t score consistently and our bench is weak.

LARRY FITZGERALD: Maybe the idiot owner shouldn’t have taken Vince Young in the first round?

VINCE YOUNG: Hey, at least I won a national title in college – you played at Pitt.

JEFF GARCIA: Maybe you should have waited to trade for me until after my bye week?

ME: I had no choice but to dump Rudi Johnson when I did. Plus, you’ve seen our quarterbacks! How do you expect us to compete with Daunte and Vince behind center!? We needed you! The owner gave me all of this chicken shit and expects me to make chicken salad. We started Damon Huard this week for Christ’s sake.

RYAN LONGWELL: What happened to Daunte anyway?

ME: We cut him so we could pick up Huard. Plus, he might not take another regular season snap in the NFL ever again, he was dead weight.

LENDALE WHITE: Is that a fat joke? I thought this meeting was going to be catered?

LIONS DEFENSE: Not to point fingers or anything, but the Lions Defense has scored more points than anybody else on this roster. Your defense should never be your highest scorer on the team.

GREG JENNINGS: If we played the Vikings every week I would guarantee you that I would have a higher point total.

DERRICK MASON: Can somebody please pay attention to me? I play for the Ravens and I sit on the bench for this brutal fantasy football team. I couldn’t be more tired of losing at this point.

KENTON KEITH: Hey, I am just happy to be on somebody’s roster.


LAMONT JORDAN: I miss Daunte – any chance we will pick him up again?

VISHANTE SHIANCOE: I had as many touchdown passes as he did yesterday.

WILLIE PARKER: You can’t catch or block - how did you find a starting job with the Vikings or with Richard’s Rampage?

PLAXICO BURRESS: Give Shiancoe a break – his quarterbacks can’t throw the ball downfield more than 20 yards and Brad Childress wouldn’t throw over the middle to a tight end if his life depended on it.

BEN WATSON: On the bright side, I should be back to full strength next week.

ME: Oh goodie.

JEFF GARCIA: So, what’s the plan anyway – how do we start winning again?

LENDALE WHITE: Any more pizza left?

ME: Everybody is done with their bye weeks now, so here’s the starting lineup. It’s in stone and it won’t be changed unless one of you brittle boned bastards gets hurt again. Kenton Keith – if you find a way to take out Joseph Addai, the number 2 running back spot is yours. Plax – if you are healthy you start. No more of this hobbling around on one leg. Jennings is too good to sit.

Here we go:

QB: Jeff Garcia
RB: Willie Parker
RB: LenDale White
WR: Larry Fitzgerald
WR: Plaxico Burress/Greg Jennings
TE: Ben Watson
K: Ryan Longwell
Defense: Lions
Utility/OT: Plaxico Burress/Greg Jennings

We are giving this thing one more week and if it doesn’t work out, we start planning for next year.

If that strategy can work for the Vikings, why can’t it work for the Rampage?

Stay tuned.

Hoping for the best, but waiting for the worst.

Like it wasn’t bad enough to get blown out 34-0 at Lambert Field, now the entire season hinges on the results of an MRI exam.

Okay, so the season is already over, but the MRI on Adrian Peterson this morning is very important to this team. He is the only offensive “skill” player the Vikings have and if he is hurt, the team might not score again this season.

The only person benefiting from Peterson’s injury will be Coach Chill. All of the attention should be focused on him and his lack of coaching ability, but if Peterson is hurt badly enough, all of the talk will focus on the knee and not on the coach.

The Vikings didn’t show up yesterday. Sure, they don’t have much talent on offense, but we shouldn’t be pining for Brad Johnson’s return. The teams quarterback and wide receiver positions are in shambles and the only way to make it better is to blow the whole thing up and start over.

Let’s just hope Adrian Peterson is healthy enough at the start of next year to play a big role because we will need him.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Detmer gets cut. Vikings make the Williamson thing right.

The Koy Detmer era didn't even last five days and the Vikings decided to give Troy Williamson his pay check after all. We won't miss Detmer a bit and now hopefully all of the national media attention can go away from the team as it relates to Williamson not getting paid.

The media ripped the Vikings all week long for not paying Troy Williamson because he missed last week's game due to family issues. We sided with Williamson, he should have been allowed to be away from the team. His Grandma died and his brother is in a coma. Those seem like pretty good reasons to be away from work.

Meanwhile Detmer is leaving before he had a chance to meet everyone on the team. His departure means Kelly Holcomb Tarvaris Jackson will be healthy enough to (shudder) Brooks Bollinger.

It's Packer Week. Let's hope Adrian Peterson packs his running shoes.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Vikings sign Koy Detmer. Yes, seriously.

Eagles west continues to thrive. The Vikings signed former Philadelphia QB Koy Detmer today to serve as the back-up to Tarvaris Jackson, Kelly Holcomb, and Brooks Bollinger. At the rate these Vikings quarterbacks keep going down, Detmer could see some playing time on Sunday at Green Bay.

Monday, November 5, 2007

If Peterson can learn to pick up the blitz, he might be okay.

During the first few games of the season, Brad Childress was afraid to use Adrian Peterson on third down, because Peterson has a hard time "picking up blitz packages and stunts."

I guess a 30 carry, 296 yard day might make Childress change his mind for good. Peterson will without question be the NFL Rookie of the Year and he could challenge Tom Brady and/or Randy Moss for the MVP -- if the Vikings win the rest of their games and Peterson keeps doing what he is doing.
And, that was the great part about the win yesterday -- not only did Peterson look amazing, but the entire team played well. Chargers linebacker Shawne Merriman said the Vikings "just wanted the game more than we did. They dove for every inch, fought for everything. They blocked a second or two longer. When you're that physical, good things happen."

He was talking about the Vikings! Nobody talks about the Vikings like that. Maybe this game was a turning point? I have no idea about this team anymore. They lose to the Eagles at home and look terrible doing it and then destroy the Chargers one week later.
Just crazy.

As long as the Vikings don't trade Peterson to New England and as long as he doesn't get injured, the next few Vikings seasons are going to be pretty fun.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Time to strap on the blaze orange.

Cold Omaha is taking a break for a few days in order to spend some time in the great outdoors. See you back here on Monday to talk about another Vikings loss and perhaps some positive thoughts about Tubby Smith and the Gopher hoops team.

For those who do want some good news about the Vikings: The Bill Parcells coaching the Vikings rumors haven't started yet -- but they will. And, it might be more than rumors. The Tuna could be wearing a skin-tight purple slicker or wind breaker come this time next year. We shall see.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Tiny little "Pohlad Field" waits for approval.

One day after Torii Hunter filed for free agency, the Twins unveiled a model of their new stadium. And while it (hopefully) won't be named Pohlad Field, the park will more than likely go over budget and the Twins will have to pick up the slack -- making it easier to honor Scrooge McDuck by having his name someplace on or near the new stadium.

The Hennepin County Board has to approve the design at its meeting next week, but it sounds like that step is a formality and the design you see above will, in fact, be the new stadium.

It looks okay to us, we are just happy to have outdoor baseball back in Minneapolis.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Brooks Bollinger can settle for field goals too.

The Vikes are 2-5. They lost to the Eagles 23-16 yesterday and another quarterback got hurt. Once again the Vikings came out and scored a TD on their first drive and then proceeded to shit the bed on offense for the rest of the day.

Brooks Bollinger will probably start next week against the Chargers. This is the same Bollinger who bounced 5-yard out passes in the preseason and couldn't even complete a screen pass to save his life two months ago.

It might be tough for this team to win four games this year.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

If T-Jack plays this weekend, he will be even more inaccurate than usual.

It’s not that we want Kelly Holcomb to be the starting quarterback for the Vikings this weekend. It’s that if he doesn’t start, it means Tarvaris Jackson will – and that’s not going to be good for anyone.

Jackson has a broken finger on his throwing hand. That’s kind of a big deal. According to WCCO.COM, even Jackson himself says he can’t throw accurately without a healthy index finger,

"That's one of the most important fingers, besides the thumb, to throw the football. I don't want to be out there if I can't control the football."

Well said Mr. Jackson – have a seat right over here next to Ryan Cook.

Sit him down, let him watch, and maybe he’s ready in a couple of weeks. T-Jack struggles enough when he has four good fingers and a good thumb. A broken hand might mean a 1-15 performance with 11 yards passing, and 3 interceptions.

Kevin McHale utters 13 words that should make all of us nervous:

“We have some other stuff we're probably going to do inside this deal."

You have to be happy the Wolves dumped salary and I guess Antoine Walker could have something left in the tank. But the fact that McHale actually made a pretty good deal here makes us wonder how he is going to screw it up in the long wrong. As long as he signs Al Jefferson to an extension in the next few days, we have to be okay with whatever else he decides to do. But be prepared for the worst.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Pulling for the Rockies.

I am an American League guy and I do like the Red Sox. But, since we've lost Randy Moss, David Ortiz, and Kevin Garnett to New England, I am having a hard time liking anything about any of the sports teams in Boston.
Plus, the Rockies have never been there before, they have a small payroll, and they have a pretty cool logo -- so I am pulling for them. During the regular season, I can honestly say I didn't see more than 5-6 innings of any one Rockies game. And while I've watched them in the playoffs quite a bit, I still couldn't pick Jeff Francis or Ubaldo Jimenez out of a lineup.
All I am hoping for is a good series and since we like to make cold predictions, we will take the Red Sox in 6 games. But we would love to see the Rockies win.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Jackson lights up Cowboys for 72 yards.

We understand that Tarvaris Jackson was making just his sixth NFL start on Sunday against the Cowboys. But anytime the starting quarterback completes just 6 of 19 passes for 72 yards, we have to wonder if maybe things are going in the right direction for the young signal caller.

I don't blame Jackson much for the loss yesterday. Sure, he needs to complete more of his passes and he has to work on actually throwing the ball into spots where his receivers can get it. But, he's a project from a 1AA college and he probably shouldn't be playing in the NFL right now. The Vikes don't have any other viable options at quarterback, so Jackson is forced to play. That's not his fault, it's the head coach's fault.

Can you name any other team in the NFL right now that would put Jackson in the starting QB spot? Maybe Miami, but at this point I take my chances with Cleo Lemon over Jackson.

Long story short, the Vikings didn't lose yesterday solely because of Tarvaris Jackson. But, they didn't have much chance to win with him in there either.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

NDSU wins, postseason dream for Gophers ends.

If you are a Gopher fan, you can forget the Rose Bowl. You can forget the Liberty Bowl too. In fact, you can forget about the idea of getting stomped in any kind of bowl game this year -- or for several years in the future.

North Dakota State’s win today was great for them and it really wasn’t much of a surprise to any of us. Nice job Bison. has a great quote from Coach Tim Brewster about the Gophers being out of the postseason chase:

"I've been to 16 bowl games as a player and as a coach," Brewster said earlier this week. "Going to a bowl game does not excite me. Playing in a championship bowl game excites the heck out of me.”

It will be a long, long time before Brewster is excited.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Who wants to know about Tim Brewster and his future?

Just a few random thoughts...

If you want to know what people are thinking about Tim Brewster, go ahead and google the words "fire Tim Brewster" and see what pops up. Over the last four days, 167 different people have googled that phrase and entered into Cold Omaha. If the Gophers lose to NDSU this weekend, Tim Brewster's days as head coach might be numbered. And Cold Omaha might finally find a national following. Okay, neither of those will happen, but we can dream, right?

Why is that Vince Vaughn's new movie "Fred Clause" seems to be a rerun of all the other Vince Vaughn movies over the last five years and it hasn't even been released yet? When you have to break out dialogue in a commercial for the film like "Let's make some bad decisions with each other!" and that dialogue was stolen from a movie (Wedding Crashers) that Vaughn did three years ago and Vaughn was the person who said the dialogue in the previous movie, well...I have a feeling the film might be kind of terrible.

What is less interesting to you at this point: Kobe Bryant will be traded. Joe Torre will be fired.

Lost in all the Adrian Peterson madness is the fact that the Vikings defense allowed over 400 passing yards to Brian Griese last week. Tony Romo might find Owens/Crayton/Hurd a few times on Sunday I think.

The gal and I finally saw the movie Knocked Up and was good but not great. I hate being let down by a movie like that, but I guess its my own fault -- I was expecting big things.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, I wasn't expecting much and I love the HBO series The Wire. I am ten episodes into the first season and it is running a close second on my list to The Sopranos. It's that good.

Only three more weeks until the Twins officially announce they won't be bringing back Torii Hunter.

And we might be three months away from a Twins deal that sends Johan Santana packing.

In honor of Peter King, one thing I think I think is that the Indians will win the ALCS tonight and set up a decent World Series where they dismantle the Rockies in five or six games.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Adrian Peterson seems to have this NFL thing figured out.

The Vikings beat the Bears 34-31 because of Adrian Peterson. He had an okay day.

20 carries for 240 yards and three TD's -- two of which were for more than 50 yards.

1 catch for 9 yards.

128 return yards.

The return yards are great and yes, he set up the game-winning score. But wow, every time he returns a kick I worry that he's going to get hurt. Coach Chill -- let him start at running back and give the return duties to someone else. Please.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Lew Ford will take his online gaming skills someplace else next year.

Thankfully not all that much happened during our brief hiatus over the last couple of weeks. However, one of the things we didn't get a chance to talk about was the Twins cutting loose Lew Ford. Yesterday Lew announced he would opt for free-agency rather than take a minor league contract with the Twins. Can't say we blame him.

We like Lew, always have and always will. He carried our Heights Suburbanites fantasy baseball team for the first half of the 2003 fantasy season and his "Mini Vlad" stats made us a champion.

Good luck Lew and if you find your way back to Minnesota, we won't be booing, we will be Lewing.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Take a good look at the ALCS MVP.

This is Fausto Carmona and he is a starting pitcher for the soon-to-be World Champion Cleveland Indians. You are going to be hearing a lot about him over the next three weeks.

Cold Predictions:
Cleveland over the Red Sox in seven.
Rockies over the Diamondbacks in five.
Cleveland wins it all with a rock-solid six game series against the Rockies.

Even though the Twins aren't in the playoffs, I haven't been this excited about post-season baseball in a long time. Four really good offenses and four pitching staffs with great and not so great attributes.

Should be fun.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Forget recruiting, Brewster can’t even keep the players he already has on the team.

Two more Golden Gopher football players have left the team, bringing the total to three guys jumping ship in the last seven days.

Receiver Mike Chambers is already gone. Now fullback Tom Becker and defensive end Sean McWhirter are also leaving. Both cited differences with Brewster as being at least part of the reason for their departure.

From today’s Strib:

“"I was not happy with what was going on," said Becker, a Wayzata graduate.”I was a [Glen] Mason recruit, and Brewster has his own ideas. It wasn't about wins and losses."

Good times in Gopher Nation. Maybe Pam Borton can teach Brewster a thing or two about player retention.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Did you ever think we would miss these two guys?

We didn’t think so either.

Its Packer week and we have no idea what to expect on Sunday. Well, other than an opening scoring drive by the Vikings followed by three hours of Vikings offense that includes nothing but incomplete 5-yard-post patterns and broken up screen plays with a wasted effort by the only decent player we have in Adrian Peterson.

Good times.

Somebody should switch to Sanka.


Yes -- this is all over the internets -- but it is most definitely worth a full-length look at Mike Gundy and his tremendous meltdown.

One question though, and I always wonder this when coaches or players say they don't read the paper or listen to the media: if he doesn't read the newspaper, how did he see the article?

Come after me. I'm a man. I'm FORTY!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Torii had a nice run. Now it's time to say goodbye.

We aren't endorsing the idea of Torii Hunter moving on and ending his career in a uniform other than that of the Minnesota Twins. But, we all need to get used to the idea of Hunter playing in Chicago, New York, Boston, or Texas next year -- and for the next few years after that.

He's done with the Twins.

It was fun, but it's time to move on. Good luck and best wishes. I hope Denard Span can figure out how to hit a breaking ball between now and next April.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Ladies and gentleman…Colton Iverson…we got him.

Maybe Gopher Nation is alive and well? Minnesota has its best recruit since Vincent Grier now that South Dakota’s Colton Iverson gave a verbal commitment to the Golden Gopher basketball team today.

Iverson visited Creighton, Florida, and Nebraska, as well as Minnesota officially and also had unofficial visits to the University of South Dakota, North Dakota State, South Dakota State, University of New Mexico, and Iowa State. In all Colton received scholarship offers from more than 25 major college institutions, including multiple offers from schools in the Big East, SEC, ACC, Big 10, Big 12, and the PAC 10 conferences. Some of those schools that tendered offers include UCLA, Marquette, Kentucky, Washington State, Florida, Virginia, Iowa, and Cincinnati.
Nice job Tubby Smith. Maybe you could walk down the hall and give Tim Brewster a hug. Just tell him things will be okay. Maybe even invite yourself along on his next recruiting trip.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Do you want to play football for the Gophers?

We will take a guess and say most of our readers have all four years of college football eligibility remaining. No doubt many of you think you could do a better job of defending passes and running routes than this current crop of Gophers.

Well, now we can see if you really have the skills to get noticed. Here’s your chance to fill out the Golden Gopher recruiting questionnaire.

With luck, one of the outstanding recruiters from the Gopher staff will knock on your door with a scholarship offer.

We filled out our questionnaire over lunch today; it’s really pretty easy to use:
First Name: Cold
Last Name: Omaha
Grad Year: 1992, 1994, 1996
Address: Cold Omaha Headquarters
City: Anytown
State: Minnesota
Zip: 55555
Home phone: We screen calls and have solicitor block, so don’t bother trying
Cell phone: Only for emergencies
Fax number (if you have a home fax machine): We have a Kinko’s near us if needed
Email Address:
Date of Birth: Old enough to drink, young enough to not live in the past
Social Security #: For the W-2? Cash payments only, please
Family Information:
Who do you live with?:
My wife, my dog, and her three cats.
Mother's Name: Mom
Mother's Occupation: You couldn’t follow her around all day; much less do the work she does
Mother's Alma Mater: PhD, Common Sense Institute
Family at U of M: We are all family; we are all part of Gopher Nation
Father's Name: Dad
Father's Occupation: CEO
Father's Alma Mater: MBA, University of Experience
Siblings: Youngest of four kids
Friends at U of M: Tubby Smith. But, he’s never really on campus, so not sure if that counts?
Who is going to influence your decision?: Probably television
School Info
Never really cared for it, to be honest
Coach's Name: Coach
Coach office phone: It only dials out
Coach cell phone: Seriously, people actually have their coach’s cell phone number?
GPA: About average
Core GPA: See above
SAT: Let’s just say I won’t be getting into Stanford
ACT: It was pretty low – why do you think the U is on my list?
Your academic interest: Hanging out on Northrop Mall and enjoying taco night at Sally’s
Career interest: Pro baseball player
Athletic Info:
With or without lifts?
Weight: What is this Don’t worry, we are in shape. Round is a shape
40 Time: Do you have a sundial?
Jersey #: Double Zero, baby
Offensive Position: Slow footed, weak armed, option quarterback
Defensive Position: You put me anywhere in that secondary and it’s an instant upgrade
Position you want to play: Reverse cowgirl, other
Other Sports: Basketball, Baseball, Softball, Poker, Golf, hunting, fishing, bird watching, any kind of video game

Schools you are interested in: Basically any team with whom you think the Gophers can compete
1) Bowling Green
2) North Dakota State
3) Florida Atlantic
4) Duluth School for the Blind
5) St. Paul Nurses of the Poor

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Proof that Kevin McHale was on TV before he ruined the Timberwolves

You have to forgive me, but I needed to post something fun today. If I sit here any longer thinking about Nick Punto playing 2nd base full-time for the Twins next year, blood might actually squirt out of my eye.

So, enjoy this Converse Weapons commercial from 1986.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Trying to see the upside.

As long as Tarvaris Jackson’s groin injury isn’t going to be a long-term thing, yesterday’s 20-17 loss at Detroit will help the Vikings as much as it hurt them.

The pass defense was bad, the offense couldn’t move the ball, and Jackson turned it over way too often. But, it was an entertaining game and The Purple still had a chance to win with a field goal at the end of regulation. At least Ryan Longwell’s attempt had the distance from 52-yards. I believe he makes that kick 8 out of 10 times.

We know this isn’t going to be a playoff team, so we’ll take an entertaining game when we can get it. Either way, it’s still about a million times better than cheering for the Gophers.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Somewhere Glen Mason is looking at himself in the mirror and giggling.

This is getting sad.

Over the last month or so we’ve been saying Tim Brewster should be fired. It was mostly tongue-in-cheek two weeks ago.

Now it’s not.

The Gophers lost again today – this time to Florida Atlantic.

I don’t think it ever existed, but if there was a Gopher Nation, it’s pretty much dead now.

Well done Coach Brewster.

Mike Max is on TV and radio. That means his opinion is more important than yours

I am not a Mike Max fan. I am not sure if it’s the way he insults callers on his radio show, the way he boot-licks Sid Hartman, or if its just the fact that he doesn’t really know what he’s talking about and he normally confuses random thoughts and observations with actual news and information.

All of those things are okay if you are writing for some dopey sports blog, but isn’t he supposed to actually know what he’s talking about? Shouldn’t he have sources in places and access to information that we don’t have? Well…he doesn’t.

He’s the least plugged in sports guy in town and has been for the last five years. But still, even with all those faults, he somehow manages to come off as a smug and arrogant little man. If you are scoring at home, that’s hard to do.

Whatever your reasons for not liking him, you should still read his news and notes column, because it’s filled with hard-hitting facts. Plus, he's on so you know it’s good.

Other than Sid and Shooter, who I believe actually built their own sources over the years; where else can you get nuggets like this? Only from Mike Max:

“People inside the Twins organization will tell you Torii Hunter's decision on returning will be driven number one by money, number two by the team's chances to compete; something that does not bode well for the team right now.”

“The recently-acquired Wolves player, Al Jefferson has moved to the Twin Cities and is working out with coaches daily.”

“The day after his 17 strike out performance, Johan Santana headed to the health club the next morning for a spinning class.”

You’re telling me a hundred other people with cable TV and an internet connection couldn’t have come up with that information?

Now that’s a good question. Can Ben Tracy look into this for us? I know, I don’t have any idea who Ben Tracy is either.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

That Vietnam War injury flared up at a bad time for Greg Oden.

Are we sure the Wolves didn’t draft Greg Oden? It would make sense, since he hasn’t even played a minute in an NBA game and he’s already out for the season because of a knee injury.

Wow – how happy is Seattle right now? Kevin Durant is looking like a pretty good #2 pick.

Terry Ryan leaves and the blame falls on Carl Pohlad.

Twins GM Terry Ryan is on his way out. Speculation on the internets is running rampant, but the guess here is that he got sick and tired of having to low-ball players because of Carl Pohlad’s cheap ways. At some point it has to get old taking pot-shots from people for not spending money or for shipping players away to other teams because you know you can’t sign them as free agents when they are eligible.

A 2:00 press conference is planned.

Ryan will be missed. Its odd timing for something like this to happen and unless he’s being force out (why would this be the year for that) he’s definitely leaving on his own terms. Rumors are flying that he will stay in the Twins system, but at this point you have to wonder why. The best guess is he will remain with the team in some sort of scouting capacity but again – why not go to a franchise willing to spend money and run a real baseball operation?

Kind of a sad day for Twins fans I think. His assistant, Bill Smith, will take over as GM.

By the way – the Twins are still playing.

Everyone is excited about Adrian Peterson and everyone knows the Gopher football team is terrible. But, the Twins are still playing games and we thought it might be nice to check in on them.

Here’s what we know:

Carlos Silva is hurt – he pulled a groin yesterday during the loss to the Royals. Sounds like all those spinning classes with Johan Santana may have backfired.

The Twins are now 10 ½ games back – makes you kind of happy you stopped paying attention, huh?

Justin Morneau hasn’t hit a homerun since August 24. At this point, he could probably use a week or two off.

Matthew LeCroy is inexplicably back up with the big club. He must know some deep dark secrets about Terry Ryan. I would pay $1,000 to see him play nine full innings as a catcher for the Twins this year. The opposing team, pick whichever one you want, would steal at least ten bases off him.

Joe Mauer is playing again and it’s been a few days since anyone has said anything publicly about him changing positions. Let me break that trend: Joe Mauer should change positions.

Jason Kubel is a tease. He hit .364 in August and is hitting .370 in September. He hit .250 before the break.

At some point we are going to stop watching Twins games and focus on something a little more interesting. It’s going to be a long winter without Circle Me Bert signs, but somehow I think we’ll manage.

We’ve been hooked on Big Brother, Rock of Love, and Sopranos reruns on A@E and that has helped ease us off baseball. But we aren’t sure how to spend the cold fall nights in front of the TV. It might be time to turn to Survivor or Kid Nation. Is it too late to get into Heroes? Is it worth even going there at this point?

Well, at least the baseball playoffs will be here in a month and we can listen to Tim McCarver say things like “running the bases well and taking the extra base in the playoffs is important, that’s why guys with great speed are important in the playoffs.”

At least we don’t have to listen to him during Twins games.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Coach Chill talks presidential succession.

When Chester Taylor comes back from his oblique injury, he will get just as many carries as Adrian Peterson; because that's the way the head coach wants it.

That’s fine. Chester Taylor is a serviceable NFL running back. In fact, he’s above average. But, Adrian Peterson is a stud and at some point this job sharing thing just won’t work.

Childress did try to explain the significance of having two solid running backs by making a pretty reasonable comparison when he said:

"That's why it's good to have two. That's why you have a vice president, because the president might not be there. He might be gone, and the vice president has to step up."

Yeah, I would say being the President/VP is about the same as running a football. They are pretty comparable when it’s all said and done. Coach Chill is coming out of his shell a little bit and he’s starting to sound like Denny Green.

I am looking forward to seeing Speaker of the House Mewelde Moore back in uniform this week. He should be returning kicks instead of Adrian Peterson and he does have a little shiftiness in him should Chester Taylor not be able to go.

If we get to the point where President pro tempore of the Senate Naufahu Tani spends a lot of time running the ball, this season is over.

Monday, September 10, 2007

What’s not to like?

Winning at home against the Michael Vick-less Falcons, especially when they are lead by Joey Harrington, isn’t really that tough to do. But for this Minnesota Vikings team, any win is a good win.

The defense was outstanding and Adrian Peterson gives us a reason to be optimistic. Sure Tavaris Jackson didn’t do much, but he didn’t really hurt the offense either, so at this point -- it is all systems go. Taking on the Lions next week should be a good test, particularly for the secondary, since they get to see Calvin Johnson for the first of what will no doubt be many 100 yard 8 catch days.

All in all not a bad weekend – the Gopher football team squeaked by Miami of Ohio and the Twins called Matthew LeCroy up to the big club for one last month of major league salary before he hangs up the cleats for good. He only hit .194 down in AAA Rochester this year, but you can’t overlook his defensive talent at the catcher position. With all of the Twins catchers banged up, LeCroy was the only option left. Yikes.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Sid says Weber reminds him of Tarkenton, Vince Young.

Sid Hartman hasn’t written or said the words “cold Omaha” in a long time, which is obviously disappointing to us. But – Sid keeps on delivering like nobody else can.

In his Sunday column he writes that current Gopher quarterback Adam Weber reminds him of NFL great Fran Tarkenton. Tarkenton started his professional career in 1961, so I am going to go out on a limb and guess many of you never saw him play.

That’s okay, because Sid also compared Weber to someone you have seen play: Vince Young.

Here are the unbelievable comments from Sid in the Strib:

“As I watched young redshirt freshman Adam Weber take over the Gophers offense on Saturday in the 41-35 three-overtime victory over Miami (Ohio), he reminded me of another young quarterback named Fran Tarkenton…”

Sid admitted he might take some shots from people for making this comparison, but then he went a step further and made another odd comparison between Weber and Vince Young:

“Yes, I'll be ridiculed for this comparison…And yes, I expect more ridicule when I compare Weber, after two college starts, to having the athletic ability of Vince Young, the great All-America whom Gophers coach Tim Brewster recruited and coached at Texas. But Weber has some of the athletic ability of Young, now a star with the Tennessee Titans.”

I am too embarrassed for him to ridicule him. We still love you Sid. But wow – this is getting sad.