Sunday, November 18, 2012

We Love BCS Chaos

Here in the Cheap Seats, we don't have a dog in the BCS hunt.  Sure, we have our likes and dislikes,  but we are D-II.

However, if we do have a rooting interest, it is chaos.  The games on 11/17/2012 did not disappoint.

The BCS has lucked out more times than not in getting the right matchup for the BCS Trophy Bowl.  This year, their luck may have run out.

There are still games to be played.   The college football gods may still smile upon the BCS.  But as things stand right now, it's a no win situation.

If Notre Dame defeats Southern Cal next week, they will finish undefeated and earn a spot in the BCS Trophy Bowl.  But who might they face?  Probably the winner of the SEC Championship game.  Either of which would have at least one loss.  Right or wrong, that's probably how it plays out.

If Notre Dame loses to USC,  then what?  Then the SEC champion is almost assured a spot.  After that, who knows.

Either scenario creates a bunch of angry people.

This year, the new four team format might not be the answer.  But it would be an improvement.  Who in their right mind would want to play Texas A&M right now?  A two loss team with no shot.  But might just be playing better than anyone else in the country right now.

The FBS postseason is broken.  It is the best regular season in all of sports.  Could have the best of both.

Saturday, November 17, 2012


Here's our view on the great AL MVP controversy of 2012.  Words matter as much as statistics.

If we are going to give the MVP to whomever has the best WAR (Wins Above Replacement), then why even have a vote?  Simple.  Player A has the best WAR. MVP.  Done. No further analysis required.

But hold on just a second.  The award is for most valuable player.  Not the best player on the field.  Not the player that had the best statistical season.  Not even the player whom everyone deems to be the best.  It is for most valuable.

Now that changes things.

No one can argue about the greatness of Mike Trout's season.  He can hit.  He can run.  He can play defense.  He is a great player.  He probably had the best season of anyone in MLB. But how valuable was he?

Let us use the WAR stat to prove our point.  (We are not going to look up the actual WARs of each player, but we know the figures and they will suffice.)  Mike Trout had a WAR of around 10.  So without him, the Angels win 10 less games.  The Angels did not make the playoffs with Trout's 10 WAR.  They don't make the playoffs without him.  How valuable is that?

Miguel Cabrera had a WAR of around 6.  The Tigers won the AL Central by 3 games.  Take away his WAR and the Tigers miss the playoffs.  Seems pretty valuable to us.

If you want to award the best player for a year, re-word the award.  Until then, live with it.

Where Has the Good Music Gone?

Finding new good music is becoming more and more difficult.  With music becoming more and more diverse and top 40 music pretty much in the crapper, finding the good stuff takes work.

The internet has made it manageable, but it's still not easy.  Really, how exactly do you find a Swedish rock band that sounds like a cross between the Rolling Stones and Lynyrd Skynyrd with touches of Hanoi Rocks?  By accident mostly.

Here in the Cheap Seats, we are kind of stuck in the '80's. We grew up on hair bands/glam metal/pop metal (whatever you want to call it).  And we unashamedly still listen to it.  We also grew up on classic rock and southern rock.  Also had country influences due to locale and parental figures.  We are now into Texas Country/red dirt country (again, whatever you want to call it) because it is the closest genre out there that incorporates classic/southern rock sensibilities into the music.

But if you put in the work and dig a little deeper, there are still bands (new bands) out there putting out good old-fashioned Southern rock, classic rock and pop metal.

If any of the above strikes a chord with you, check out Blackberry Smoke, Diamond Dogs and/or Halestorm.

If you hate all of the above genres but can't find anything you like, you're gonna have to do your own work.  But don't despair, good music is still out there.  Even if you can't find it on the radio.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Did Postponement of Texas A&M's Season Opener Cost Them Shot at SEC Title?

May or may not have made a difference, but interesting to think about in light of Texas A&M's victory over Alabama today.

How may have the postponement of the Aggies' season opener against Louisiana Tech affected the entire season?

Let's explore that just a bit.

First of all, the Aggies may very well have lost that game had it been played as scheduled. But as A&M has improved throughout the season with Kevin Sumlin and Kliff Kingsbury in their first year at College Station and Johnny Manziel a first year starter at quarterback, one game under their belts before heading into that SEC opener against Florida may have made a difference in the outcome of that close loss.

Now fast forward a few weeks.  The makeup against La Tech was played in what would have been an open week before the LSU game, another close loss.

While we will never have any idea what might have happened, just something that crossed our minds today.  Had the game been played as scheduled, Manziel might have been lost for the season with an injury.  Or that one game of experience may have propelled A&M to victory over Florida.

Who knows.  Pure conjecture, but fun nonetheless.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Singing Rock is Harder Than It Seems

The day after the election would be apropos to post something on the results.  But we are politicked out.  So let's go on a guilty pleasure journey.

We admit it.  And without shame.  We love the singing competition shows.  The Voice.  X Factor.  American Idol. Actually kind of addicted.

One thing we have noticed: It is really hard to sing rock songs well.

All the people on these shows make it primarily because of their ability to sing.  For the most part, they are all incredibly talented.  Pop songs they all do well.  But, have mercy, when they try to do rock. OK, some can pull it off (because they're rock singers), but for the most part it is a train wreck.

I can't count the number of times a Bon Jovi or Aerosmith song has been butchered on these shows.

You don't have to be the best singer technically to sing rock.  But those that do it well have something that can't be taught or learned.  We can't explain it, just know that it is.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Notre Dame: Overrated and Overblown

Many claim that college football is better when Notre Dame is good.  We, however, do not subscribe to this.  In fact, we believe college football is worse when Notre Dame is good.

Let's explore this, shall we?

The past few years, while Notre Dame has been irrelevant in the grand scheme of things, CFB has flourished.  CFB has shown, over and over again, it is not dependent on the Fighting Irish and their overblown sense of self worth.

One might contend that CFB has never been more popular across the country as a whole.  And Notre Dame had absolutely zero to do with this. CFB has thrived as ND has floundered.

Now, here's the real rub.  Even as ND has been nowhere near the BCS trophy game conversation in recent years, they still garnered way too much media attention.

"Will Notre Dame ever get back to a place of relevance?"

While we are old enough to remember when ND was in the national title hunt almost every year, there is a whole generation that must wonder what all the fuss is about.  Now that they actually are, help us all.