still bitter after two years... Not understanding confidence intervals  


It’s been about two years by now, but the argument I got in with the Toxic Tort prof. This guy was the leading attorney in the field. Since he represented big companies, I can only imagine he was pure evil. The fact that he couldn’t understand basic statistics is just mind boggling.

It all started when he made us participate in an exercise where we had to guestimate certain measurements. For all the questions, we had to give a range where we thought we were 95 percent sure the measurement would fall in. Example: How long is the Nile river in miles? We were supposed to give the low and high end of our interval. Another question was write the year in which Ghangis Khan pillaged and plundered (or whatever he did).

He thought he was so witty when our answers were “wrong”. He claimed this was a human condition where we intentionally create smaller intervals and we overestimate our ability to narrow. I raised my hand (a rarity in lawschool, but particularly in that boring class), and tried to explain that what he was asking for was an impossible task.

I told him that I had no frame of reference in terms of the length of the nile river and thus I couldn’t form any type of confidence interval. He made some jokes at my expense where he mistook knowledge for intelligence. I don’t think I lack intelligence just because I have no concept of distance. This went back and forth for a couple of minutes. He got me to admit that I knew the Nile river was probably longer than 5 miles and probably shorter than a billion miles. He thought he had won.

What he refused to grasp is that a 95% confidence interval is actually very specific. It means that you expect to be right 95% of the time and wrong 5% of the time. That means that if I answered 100 of his questions, I should get 95 of them right. But these questions were impossible. I could come up with an interval that was 100% accurate by picking absurd book ends or I could guess numbers that I THINK are reasonable. But, my knowledge is so limited that it’s very easy that I could be wrong.

But this professor saw 95% and thought “dang jethro, that’s a big number. It’s gotta be easy to make an interval like that”. But he’s WRONG. A 95% interval is no more or less specific than a 50% interval. Or a 99% interval. Confidence intervals are based on 2 things. The mean and the standard deviation. My mean was just a guess. Based on essentially nothing. And the standard deviation was equally random.

I can’t remember how you specifically calculate a confidence interval, but it goes something like this. Say I’m measuring the length a lightbulb lasts. I have a sample of 100 out of the 1000 that were manufactured. I measure the length of each one of those 100. I find out that the mean length is 10 hours (these are the ones that Gino installed in our apartment). I also notice that each lightbulb lasts either exactly 9 hours or exactly 11 hours. I would take the mean and the average standard deviation (which is 1 b/c each one is 1 off from the mean of 10), and then plug it into an equation that involves the formula for the normal curve. The 95% interval could be something like [9.5-10.5] while the 99% interval could be [9-10]. You could say that, with this data, there is only a 1 percent chance that the actual mean length of the lightbulb is either less than 9 hours, or greater than 10. If I had less lightbulbs to measure (35 instead of a 100), and the average standard deviations were higher (ligtbulbs had individual measurements of 2 hours, 40 hours, 10 minutes, etc), then the confidence interval would expand considerably. It’s logical. If you are getting data all over the place, you gotta step back and think “hmm, I’m not that confident that we really know anything about these lightbulbs. We could just be getting unlucky”

He was confusing “confidence intervals” with gut feelings. If asked me to pick an interval that I was “pretty sure” was right, MAYBE I could (I probably still couldn’t). I’d be frustrated that it was still a guess based on essentially no knowledge, but I could live with it. But, he was bastardizing the use of a stat. He doesn’t have the right to define what a confidence interval is. That’s a stat term. If he’s going to use it, he better use it right. Especially when he’s used confidence intervals in courtrooms on cases worth millions and millions of dollars. He wasn’t telling a jury that he was “pretty sure” that he was right. He was saying he was statistically certain of something.

I wish I had the argument on tape. Because he was so condescending, b/c he’s old and successful and I’m just a punk kid with a baseball cap and shorts. But, that didn’t make him right. And of course, his little lapdog student had to come to his rescue. He used one of the props (a clock like wheel that had an ever expanding red “wedge” that covered more and more of the clock). He said that if he picked a number on the back, and then started making the wedge, I’d know when I was 95% sure that the wedge covered the mystery number.

Yeah, no kidding. Anyone who has seen the price is right knows that. But, in THAT example, there is a limited number of solutions. Say there were 100 numbers. I’d have to cover 95 of them. If we did this experiment thousands of times, I should get it right about 95% of the time.

BUT, with the Nile example, the possible solutions were essentially infinite. I hope that he was just so blown away by my lack of intelligence (well, it was actually a lack of knowledge) that he couldn’t grasp this inability. Because otherwise, it means that he really didn’t know what a confidence interval was. And that’s scary. If he changed the assignment to a 50% interval, I guarantee you that the majority of people would still get the exact number wrong. This wasn’t a situation of “well, I remember aunt sue telling me that the nile was 700 miles long, but I’m going to say 500-1000 just to be safe.” I have NO CLUE how long the nile is. I don’t even know if it goes through countries other than Egypt. I think it does. But, I have no idea what the length of Egypt is. Heck, I don’t even know how wide our country is. If I had to guess, I’d say it’s probably an 8 hour flight, and planes go about 200 miles, so it’s probably 1600 miles. Would I say that with any confidence? NO.

This old man still makes my blood boil. People claim that I “have to be right”. That’s not true. Rather, when I’m right, I have to win. That’s a big difference. I KNOW he’s wrong. But he “won”. I don’t even care what the other people in the class think. I care what HE thinks. It kills me that he walked away from that conversation thinking that I didn’t know what I was talking about.

I’m 95% certain that I hate him for it.

how can this article exist when it disproves itself!  


One of the paragraphs in this article actually disproves the rest of the article. It blows my mind that this article can exist. Basically it comes down to this:

X exists.

Here's all the interesting details of X.

btw, X doesn't really exist.

X exists.

Now what?

What a relief to hear that a hitter's sudden power surge is related not to performance-enhancing drugs, but the knob on the end of his bat.

White Sox left fielder Scott Podsednik has stopped using a bat with a shaved-down knob, and the difference in his performance is rather noticeable.

Podsednik hit no home runs and only one triple in 507 regular-season at-bats, yet he now has two homers and two triples in 38 at-bats in the postseason.

Must be the knob.

"All year, Scotty has been cutting the end of the knob on his bat — I think it had something to do with his hand hurting," White Sox right fielder Jermaine Dye said. "A lot of guys were telling him that you lose the balance in the bat by doing that. One day, taking batting practice, he started swinging a normal bat and started hitting balls out of the park."

Podsednik's postseason surge actually began before he changed bats, which he said occurred just before the start of the Series.

"I don't know if it has anything to do with the knob," Podsednik said. "I'm pretty crazy, so to speak, a little superstitious. I'm using something different up there just about every week."

Podsednik added, "I'm a feel guy. Sometimes I like swinging a bat with a knob. Sometimes I don't. Tonight it just so happened that the bat had a knob on it. I don't know if it had anything to do with the result or not." — Ken Rosenthal

Buck and McCarver were "this close" to almost getting it.  


Wow. Just wow. After a middle reliever gave up a grandslam to Konerko (the whitesox best hitter) with two outs in the bottom of the 7th, i sat there stunned. It's so painfully obvious that you bring in your ace reliever there. The game is going to be won or lost in this at bat. I was blown away that someone who has spent their entire life in baseball wouldn't think about this logically. Lidge is the ONLY choice. Buck and McCarver, an inning later, start to hint that maybe lidge should have been brought in. Of course, they use the typical "outfoxed" technique of saying "some may say" that you should bring lidge in. Buck responds with "but his answer would be that the 7th inning is just too early to bring in your closer. Yes, he's going to go 2 innings tonight, but the 7th is just too early". They almost got it. But of course they were 100% wrong.

And, does anyone else notice that this thing that tracks the pitch is way off? On bagwell's hit, it was clear that he reached outside to hit it. But the little graphic showed it as inside. I started keeping track, and it's very obvious that they are registering pitches as way more inside than they actually are. Why isn't there someone sitting in a booth somewhere franctically calling I/T saying "oh man, we need to fix this, this is so embarassing". How can they show off this new technology (which is just espn's k zone) and have it consistently wrong. Am i the only one noticing this?

I'm a little afraid to continue to watch "an evening with kevin smith"  


I had to stop after 3 questions. His answers were decently funny, but I feel very uncomfortable. It's so awkward to watch college kids try so desperately to be funny and witty when they ask him a question. No matter how cool they think they're going to be, when their voices start to shake, i want to hide under my covers. And then there are the ones who aren't nervous at all. They make me feel uncomfortable b/c they aren't nearly as funny as they think they are.

But, I have to go back and watch b/c Kevin Smith has the worst sweating problem i've ever seen. In question 1, i couldn't understand why the back of his head was so wet. Then, as he continued to talk, i noticed his neck was really shiny. By the end, and i'm not exagerating, drops of sweat* were actually flying off his head when he turned.

*this used to read "drop of sweater". normally, i don't correct my spelling/grammar mistakes, but that was shockingly bad.

Was the allan houston contract the worst of all time?  


Is the Houston contract the worst of all time? I feel like it has all the makings of it.

1) Huge dollar amount and length
2) Player was old and declining
3) player was overated (b/c defense is harder to measure)
4) was in a league with a salary cap (thus, it makes it "worse" than a baseball contract b/c in baesball, even crippling contracts aren't impossible to work around)
5) wound up hurting a team that was consistently good and had aspirations of being championship caliber
6) there was a viable alternative to the position (moving spree back to SG)
7) no other team would have come close to offering a contract close to that one.
8) every single team / media mocked the contract immediately. There wasn't one justification for it. It was hated from the very beginning
9) Not only was it blasted at the beginning, but it turned out WORSE than expected.
10) he wasn't even marketable as a player. too uncle tomish / religous.
11) there were a lot of great free agents coming up in the future that the knicks had to pass on.

#7 is what really gets me. Teams always overpay for vetrans, so that's to be expected. But i've never seen a home team overpay for their own player like this; they LITTERALLY were bidding against themselves. Allan was a loyal guy. I think they very easily could have said "see what you can get on the market and then come back to us, we'll match it". Or, if you wanted to be lazy, you realize that he was about the 5th best SG at the time, so you pay him less than what Kobe, Ray Allen, etc are getting.

The Houston contract upsets me on two levels. First and foremost, it destroyed the Knicks team. But, I also regret having to turn on Houston. As much as i liked him, i just couldn't get past his contract. I used to have so much fun watching. His jumpshot was so pure, and like i've said before, the three-point attempt is the most exciting play in all of sports (you have just the right amount of anticipation between -- set up ---> shot attempt ----> hang in the air ----> make)

What competition does this contract have? albert belle, mo vaughn, shawn kemp? not even close.

don't listen to steve phillips as you are falling asleep  


I made that mistake last night. Litterally, as i was turning the TV off, they were playing "fact or fiction"

question: Neither team will score five or more runs in any game this series.

Phillips: Fact. The pitching is just too good. Runs will be very very hard to come by.

me: isn't the average runs per game around 4.5? So, with 2 games in the DH'd AL, and 2 games at minute maid park, that's 8 offensive games (at a minimum). What are the chances that all 8 of those perform under average? I will guarantee that one team scores 5 or more runs. Unless they play super small ball. which leads to question #2

question: There will be more sacrafice bunts than home runs.

me: i don't know the numbers of sac bunts. I imagine it's pretty high in NL games. So, i could alsmost see this going as a fact.

phillips: Oh, that's DEFINITELY a fact. In fact, i would bet that there will be more squeeze bunts than home runs.

me again: that's just shocking. How many times is a squeeze even possible? Phillips is out of control.

The writers of 24 must really hate women  


Besides the serious plot holes and clichéd predictability of the first season of 24, something else really stuck me; every single female character was portrayed in a poor light. I don’t understand how this kind of sexism can exist in such a popular show. Do people choose to not think about things? That must be a nice existence. I, unfortunately, couldn’t trick myself into ignoring the problem. So, here’s a list of every female character. The order will make sense to only me: I’m going to try and do it chronologically (which I’m sure I’ll butcher), but I’ll save the big ones until the end.

  • The first minor woman we come across is the terrorist who blows up the plane and steals the ID of the photographer. I found it degrading to women that she was forced to use sex to accomplish her goal of getting the pass. It’s an underlying theme that women are sex objects and that they have to sleep their way to the top. What if the photographer had also been a woman? Would this person have failed in her mission? Or, heaven forbid, what if the terrorist wasn’t attractive? It would have been better if the woman could have actually used her intelligence to pull off the job, but instead, all she could use was her looks. Oh yeah, as a 2nd point, she did blow up a plane full of innocent people.
  • Her girlfriend then blows the deal getting greedy and asking for more money from the guy who organized the deal. She had no idea what she was doing, and her haste and greed ultimately got her killed. If she hadn’t been so nagging and selfish, she might have lived through it.
  • Janet (kim’s friend): She’s very helpless and borderline worthless. Her promiscuity and poor judgment is what starts the change of events for Kim. She was continuously drunk/high.
  • The woman who was Palmer’s aid and unknowingly dated the would be assassin. This was probably the most overtly sexist character in the entire season. When she realizes that the person she has been seeing is the assassin, she comes forward. When she explains that she doesn’t really know him too well, the men imply that she is a slut. She has to defend herself by explaining that the road is lonely. I wonder if a guy in the same position would have to make the same defense. Anyway, when she’s attempting to place the bug in his wallet, he tells her he loves her. She then diverts from the plan and decides to try and kill him. See, women are so irrational and love-crazed that they can’t be trusted to get the job done. This woman will go away for attempted murder because she needed to be loved so desperately.
  • The first mole. I can’t remember her name but I’m going to guess that it’s “Mandy”. First of all, I unfortunately realized she was a mole from the beginning because she was unattractive. It’s easier to dislike someone who is ugly, and besides, no TV show would cast someone that unattractive to be a heroine. And of course, when we find out she’s a mole, we learn that she needed the money because her husband left her and she has a son to raise. Could this be anymore clichéd? The ultimate indignation is that her services were estimated to be worth 1 to 2 million, but she was only getting 300,000. So, she not only prostituted herself, but she didn’t even get market value.
  • The news-reporter who first discovers the story of Palmer’s son and the alleged murder - She loses all her journalistic integrity and ambition when she’s threatened by those in power. Neither Palmer or his son back down, but she does. I guess women aren’t strong enough to handle the stress.
  • The black woman who was temporarily in charge while Jack was MIA. She was the stereotypical “black bitch”. The way she glared at her coworkers, the way they glared back, all fed on this stereotype. She doesn’t know how to relate to her coworkers and instead just barks orders at them. She apparently also had personal problems with Mia from their previous job. Ca-ca-ca cat fight. So typical.
  • Palmer’s speechwriter – She risks (and loses) her entire professional career to try and sleep with her boss. And the worst part is that she is provoked into doing this by another woman. It’s sad and tragic how this otherwise intelligent and strong woman completely and utterly sells out. But I guess women have no self control.
  • Palmer’s daughter – this show even has to bash rape victims. During a dinner conversation between her family members, she crumbles into a ball and starts shaking violently. Instead of allowing her to portray a victim realistically, they turned her into mush. And, I’m not even sure if you can even relate it to the rape…her reaction was more directly the result of the family fighting over later, indirect, consequences of it (7 years later).
  • Rick’s girlfriend – She hates Kim before she even knows her. Why? Because Kim is a woman and all women are competition. She unfairly assumes that Kim is after Rick, and tries to destroy her (by lying to the cops). They get into a catty fight while in the holding cell, and only comes around after Kim saves her. Women hate other women apparently.
  • The woman that Dennis Hopper’s character shoots. She was the daughter of his friend. She was very “old world”ish in that she prepared the meal, served the men, and was generally viewed as disposable. Dennis Hopper kills her just so Jack doesn’t have a viable option as a hostage.
  • Ok, unless I’m missing someone, all we have left are: Kim, Teri, Mrs. Palmer, and Mia. I’ll get to them tomorrow. Needless to say, the only one of them who has even a sliver of a redeeming quality is Kim….and that’s a stretch.

brennley's "opening statement"  


after the pregame, they always cut to the announcers so they can give their opening take on the game. these are thought out monologues. brenelly just went on and on about how this is a must win game for Cardinals.

[they are down three games to one].

check out the last sentence of this article  


kind of sums up how stupid our country is....

"The fine is somewhat surprising, considering last week, the league slapped Chargers cornerback Drayton Florence with only a $15,000 fine when he threw a forearm shiver into the ribs of an official out of frustration at a call — an action that the league viewed as intentional.

Barber doubled Florence's fine, yet his actions were largely viewed as unintentional. The difference, however, was that Barber's shot dropped the ref and appeared much worse to the viewer."

The most tainted stat i've ever seen  


During the USC v. ND game, the announcers made a big deal about this one player (i think #5) averaging over 10 yards every time he touches the ball. Pretty amazing right? I had a good feeling I knew how he did it though.

He's the friggin kickoff returner too. Don't kickoff returns tend to average 20 yards or so per play? Unbelievable that they could combine all his plays and call them "touches". Not all touches are created equal. Michael Jackson's friends can tell you that (ba-zing!)

why do PAT's continue to exist?  


I imagine the original motive behind a PAT was to make a TD worth slightly more than double a fieldgoal. Makes sense. But, there has to be a better way. They are, without a doubt, the most anticlimatic thing in all of sports. Just force teams to go for 2. That would make the game much more exciting.

I completely forgot this existed  


Remember that tourny to determine the worst espn broadcaster? well, it finally ended. Here is the bracket:

Some truth to the A-rod bashing  


Now, i will never ever fully agree with all this "Jeter is clutch, a-rod chokes" rhetoric, but, looking at the stats, it's obvious that Arod does feel some pressure in the playoffs. Yes, he was great in the playoffs in Seattle, but that's a different beast than playing in NY in October. Let's look at the stats.

Games 4-7 of the 2004 ALCS - 1 for 17.

2005 ALDS - 286/312/286. That's a .286 batting average (not bad), but only a .312 on base percentage and .286 slugging percentage. That means he didn't even get an extra base hit in 5 games! He had only 1 run scored and 2 rbi in those 5 games. I can't remember offhand (and i'm too lazy to look it up), but i think he left something like 14-16 guys on base.

He also made a very costly play defensively. There were a few other plays that he couldn't get to b/c of his poor range.

Oh, did I say A-rod? I meant Gary Sheffield. Why does he get a pass? b/c he was good in the postseason back in the day as a Marlin (he wasn't good as a Brave, right?). But i guess being the highest paid* player in the game is a worse offense than actually admitting to using the cream.

*note: the yankees pay more per year for Jeter, Randy, Giambi, and Brown (for this year), than they do/did for Arod.

How the BP of football should measure qbs.  


Current stats that measure QBs are inefficient. Since they don't have 500 at bats like baseball players do, I don't think it's fair to assume that all the luck involved will equal out.

Dropped passes should count as catches.

Long passes that are essentially jump balls should be awarded equal value regardless of whether or not they happen to be caught by the WR (or intercepted by the DB). The stat should be similiar to a pass/fail in that either the pass was put in the right position (where it's more likely to be caught by the WR or dropped than intercepted).

balls that are thrown away to avoid a sack should not be considered "incomplete"

balls that are swatted away or "almost" intercepted should count the same as one that does in fact get intercepted.

there should be some type of penalty for missing a wide open receiver. either by throwing it poorly or by not seeing him at all.

sacks that result from the qb holding it on too long should be different than sacks via a good pass rush.

incomplete passes based on a good pass rush should be less detrimental than other incomplete passes.

yards after the catch should not be nearly as valuable as yards gained before the catch (actually, "up to the catch" probably makes more sense). But, there should be some way to penalize the qb for throwing a ball that should have led the receiver and allowed him to gain more yards but couldn't b/c the ball was thrown short.

if a qb throws a 7 yard pass on 3rd and 12, those yards have little value. its value should be decreased by a lot.

The mobility of a qb should be measurable in something other than yards gained. There is value in avoiding a rush, rolling out, and still being able to make the play.

there should be a measurable stat of pocket poise.

balls swatted at the line seem (un)lucky. i may be wrong on that.

i assume playaction "fakeness" and being able to audible is immeasurable.

anything bad that happens b/c a qb is being hit as he releases is probably not the qbs fault. unless he stayed in the pocket too long.

ignore all stats that occur after the game is a blow out.

[that beer run by miller light was pretty funny. i wonder if all this miller light vs. bud light bashing is much like republicans vs democrats. as long as they are talking about each other, the idea of a third party micro brewery is unheard of]

Ok, i think i covered everything. Well, except for the obvious problem of a Qb's success is so heavily dependent on things such as the offensive line, wide receivers, defense he's playing against, weather conditions, game conditions, etc. In short, since I imagine we are at least 5 years (probably 10) away before anyone starts tracking advanced stats, i imagine it's futile to try and evaluate qbs. Keeping track of yards, ints, and tds is like measuring rbis in baseball. I'll still hold true to my belief that Phil Simms was as good a qb as Montana, but didn't have the environment around him to trully shine.

2 to get 1, or 3 to get 10? which is easier?  


Can someone please write the moneyball for football already? teams are so stupid. On first down, a runner (or receiver) is gaining yards and he's about 7 or 8 yards into the play. He then stretches to get the first down. Why? 2nd and 1 is the best situation to have in football. If there were an "outcomes matrix" like there is in baseball, you would see that it has the highest potential. You take a deep shot on 2nd down, and if that fails, you still have 3rd and 1. That's money in the bank (especially if you take it to the next level and realize you should be going for it on 4th and 1).

I wish i had a blog at the time, but when I was a kid, i actually saw a 1st and 2 play. I forget how it happened, but penalties were involved. The team ran the ball and got the first down. 1st and 10. They actually thought 1st and 10 was better than 1st and two. And yes, i'm aware that technically a running play could turn out well, but that's notwithstanding.

In conclusion, i think it's more likely to get 1 yard in 2 plays than to get 10 yards in 3.

a sweet louism  


"when i came up to the big leagues, just about every team had a right fielder who could throw like vlad".

he's now saying one of the reasons for this change is that players don't stretch out properly before the game.

Lou Pinella can't be the Yankees new manager  


he's never heard of "the neighborhood play". I'm quite confident I knew of it by the time i was nine. What else hasn't he heard of? OPS?

fox is pulling an andy kaufman.  


on top of everything they do wrong, during their pregame show, while random stats are scrolling on the bottom, those stats make video game sounds. example: vlad's batting average pops up with a spaceship sound....WHILE THE BROADCASTERS ARE TALKING.

unreal. seriously, every single decision they make is wrong.

btw, the usc vs. nd game was one of the best games i've ever seen.

A simple equation to determine a player's scrappiness  


S = A + W - T +1/2(B).

Where A=athlete W=white T=talent and B=beard.

Nice play be Erstad to get thrown out trying to stretch a double into a triple. Let's see, down 5-0 and two outs. Is getting that extra base really worth the risk? doesn't every 9 year old know that you don't make the first or third out at third? But i guess he was "making things happen" by playing small ball. woo hoo. {also, he slid like a retard again}

bonus comment: i was researching "everybody hates chris" to see if people like it as much as i do, and one of the first comments i saw was "this is the best thing to happen to prime time since 'living single'". That was the show with queen latifiah for those of you who don't remember.

have i discussed reverse brainstorming?  


I can't remember. In short, it's the process i go through every night where i lose my memory right before i fall asleep. Here's an example: I'm laying in bed trying to think of the name of the SS that was on the yankees before Jeter started playing. While i'm struggling, all of a sudden, i can't remember what i needed to know about jeter. Then, i forget Jeter is involved and I start struggling to remember what about the yankees i needed to know. Then, all i can remember is that it's something about baseball. Then i fall asleep.

It's very scary and makes me fear having alzheimers.

they should probably rethink the name  


oprah was on my tv today. She got all huffy about kids being molested, so she started some book of the month club or something. She's got a wall of all the kids that have been kidnapped and molested. She calls it "america's wall of shame." Yeah, it's not like these kids wind up blaming themselves and feeling shameful about it, or anything.

ESPN are liars!!  


Andruw Jones was on 2nd base. there was a called strike on a pitch that was a few inches outside. Jones shrugged his soldiors as if to say "where the heck was that? whats' going on here".

espn, who did the game!, is now doing highlights and they said that Jones was complaining that his teamate left him on w/o driving him in.


also, last night espn news had highlights of a college game. They made a big deal about the bad team turning the ball over. They even made fun of the fact that the qb comes from a town called santa claus and he was thus giving away gifts. in fact, they computer generated a hat for him.

on sportscenter, TWO minutes later, they showed the game as teh good team dominating with excellent passing.




PJ doesn't know this, but i almost got into a fight at the yankee game. When we were leaving, there were a bunch of people in the crowd who were recklessly using their umbrellas. The rule is, if there are other people around, you have to raise your umbrella so the big metal spokes don't go near people's eyes.

At one point, i became so enraged by nearly going blind, that I swore I was going to swing at the next person that did it. Luckily, nobody came close.

Michael Irvin says something smart.  


Last week they were talking about LT on that nfl pregame show on espn. Gameday? anyway, tom jackson was going on about how LT gets stronger as the game goes on. Michael Irvin (of all people) jumps in with "oh come on, tom, that's impossible, nobody gets stronger as the game goes on." Tom: Oh yeah, then how do you explain why his stats go up later in the game?

without any pause whatsoever... Irvin: well, everyone around him is getting tired at a faster rate than he is.

wow. How did Irvin figure that out? why hasn't anyone else ever realized that? I mean, other than greg the hammer valentine, it IS impossible to get stronger as the game goes on.

100 minutes  


this is how i spent the first 100 minutes of the morning. i then needed 120 minutes to calm down.

Ticketmaster hold ---> (1) spoke to someone about switching tickets to willcall. ---> TM hold ---> she said ok ---> asked to switch the name over to another name ---> transferred to customer service (uh, i have no idea what i was calling first. i was a customer and i was being served) ---> TM hold ---> (2) person tells me that they can't do it. but that yankee stadium can do it. they give me their number ---> call that number, it's not in service ---> go online to find the real yankees number ---> call it ---> (3) guy says i need to call the first yankee number, even though i tell him it's not in service ---> i call that number, it's not in service ---> call the 2nd yankee number again. ---> hold (mike mussina thanks me for calling) ---> (4) person is helpful, but doesn't know the answer ---> hold ---> (4.5) he speaks with his supervisor who told him to tell me that only ticket master can help me. ---> call ticketmaster ---> TM hold ---> (5) speak with a person who tells me that customer service might be helpful ---> connect me to customer service ---> nobody picks up and it disconnects me ---> ticket master again ---> hold ---> (6) another person ---> says it's against their policies to allow anyone to switch tickets over. I explain that I didn't know when the game was going to take place and that I can't make it. She says there's nothing she can do. I ask her if they go out of their way to screw customers. That these are my tickets, and I should have the right to switch them over if i can't make the game. She says to call yankee stadium, maybe they could be more helpful. ---> (7) yankee stadium guy tells me that I have to fax him a signed letter that i'm giving up the tickets and then i have to have a fax of his credit card info. I tell him that he must be mistaken, and he goes to ask his supervisor. Supervisor tells him that that's the procedure for season ticket holders, and that the ONLY way that it can be switched over is through ticketmaster.

You know what, i can't deal with this anymore. I wound up speaking with 13 total people. There's no point in me struggling to remember all the details of every phone call. Nobody could appreciate what i went through. It was brutal.

and it was all for naught, b/c the ups tickets wound up coming. and in fact, we missed the first inning b/c those ups tickets were made invalid b/c of my calling ticketmaster.


Primates lost some of my respect today  


How could a group of people so obsessed with objective observations and statistics allow their personal biases to cloud their judgment? On the last day of the regular season, home field advantage in the Yankees v. Angels series was still up for grabs. The Yankees needed either a win or an Angel loss to clinch it. Now, the Yankees had to worry about getting their players ready for Tuesday's playoff game, so they decided to start Wright and save Moose. {whether Moose should be starting game one is a different issue}. But, they played the vast majority of starters in the field and only started pulling them once the game was out of reach and Cleveland had lost (thus meaning that the bosox were going to win the wildcard).

[note: i realize this is a lot of setup considering almost everyone who reads this blog follows the yankees, but just in case...]

Now, in the angels game, they were playing the Rangers, who have nothing to play for. The rangers manager, Buck Showalter, was fired from the Yankees in 1995 and apparently still holds a grudge. He sat his best player (Soriano) and then pulled his other good players in the third inning. After the game, he claimed that soriano asked for the day off, and that he pulled the players so that they could get cheered by the fans. This is possible, but I don't buy it.

Regardless, Torre was asked to comment about it and said he didn't think it was right. The vast majority of primates started posting that the Yankees were whining, and thought that the world revolved around them. It was borderline insane.

If this happened to ANY other team, the responses were different. But because it was the MFYankees, they aren't allowed to complain. "come on, they have a 200 million dollar payroll...who are they to complain about fairness?". I was ashamed at such arguments. "if torre wanted to win so badly, he shouldn't have pitched wright!". "if the yankees wanted home field, they should have won on sunday, or any other game".

These arguments are completely illogical and biased. Why should the yankees have to clinch homefield advantage in 161 games when all other teams have 162? I hate, with a burning passion, when people use the "well, if they REALLY wanted something, they should just go above and beyond the adversity". This is the naivity that plagues republicans (just work hard, and you'll achieve the american dream.) Hey, who cares if your boss is sexist, just work harder to prove him wrong.

Why should they have to? Why are inequities and unfairness allowed to exist with the only justification being "well, it wasn't 100% dispositive, in theory it can be overcome". What Showalter did was bad for the game of baseball. There is a goodfaith effort to play the game to win. Yes, in a meaningless game between two teams out of the race, it's ok to just go through the motions (though that's not really fair to the ticket buyers). But this game had an impact on the playoffs. It shouldn't be determined by one team laying down....especially if it was done out of spite.

I didn't really care about the issue at first (though i thought it was wrong). but, after witnessing how biased the primates were, it got me more upset. If this happened to ANY other team, there would be outrage. Heck, I was pretty upset when the whitesox were laying down for the indians, even though doing so hurt the redsox.

The lost archives of NCAA 2004  


About a week ago (and a month into my unemployment), I decided to go back to the single greatest video game of all time, NCAA 2004. That was a labor of love for me. I first learned of the game by reading posts from Chris. Chris had discovered a website where you can write up stories recapping your video game achievements. I agonized reading about him losing every game of the first two seasons he played. I even remember him sending me a video he taped off the TV of some running back running through 4 red jerseys.

So, if i recall correctly, I bought the game while i was on summer break before my last year of lawschool (yes, i know that technically the summer before your third year is supposed to be spent clerking at a firm. but, go back and read the first sentence of this rant. i'm UNEMPLOYED for a reason).

For some reason, i remember being home home when i first started playing this game. And i remember feverishly trying to keep up with the game recaps on my laptop. Realizing that this process was taking too long, i started scribbling notes on stickies during the game.

When I got back to my apartment, I put a lot of effort into catching up. At some point, and I don't remember the circumstances, I lost several seasons of information. That will explain the "ticketmaster" post later on.

The last post stems from my grandmother "cleaning up" my apartment, and accidently throwing out some notes from the last season. I guess that was the last article i ever wrote, but I remember writing a lenghty article on a scandal breaking at RU about reverse point shaving. It turns out that I lost some game and was so upset that I shut the PS2 off in disgust. Afterwards, i felt so guilty about cheating that I gave up playing the game. (other than the 5 hours a day, 3 days a week i'd play with tuna).

Hmm, I clearly have written this rant backwards, as i forgot to mention the best part. Tonight, utterly depressed by the yankees loss, i started thinking about this game. I always wished i had saved the rants, as the website took down my page due to inactivity. Then it dawned on me. Why not give the way back machine a shot. It worked a miracle once (getting the interpretation of 46/2), so why not again?

And low and behold, I found SOMETHING.

all the game recaps are gone, which was 95% of the work. But, the main news articles were still there. So, here they are, in all their glory. Scroll down to the last one first, and then read up.

and ps: i was mocking my readers with the "i promise three posts by the end of the day". I'm sick of you all reading w/o posting comments. Consider yourselves suckered.

YEAR: 2010 REC: 13-0 (8-0) RANK: COACH-3 MEDIA-3 BCS-3


Click one of the following seasons below to view its information:

Year Overall Record Conference Record Final Rankings Conference Champion National Champion
2010 13-0-0 8-0-0 COACH-3 MEDIA-3 BCS-3 X
2009 10-3-0 7-1-0 COACH-12 MEDIA-12 BCS-12

2008 11-2-0 7-1-0 COACH-9 MEDIA-9 BCS-9 X
2007 7-6-0 0-0-0 COACH-NR MEDIA-NR BCS-NR

2006 7-5-0 0-0-0 COACH-NR MEDIA-NR BCS-NR

2005 7-5-0 0-0-0 COACH-NR MEDIA-NR BCS-NR

2004 7-5-0 4-3-0 COACH-NR MEDIA-NR BCS-NR

2003 0-12-0 0-7-0 COACH-NR MEDIA-NR BCS-NR




2009 season lost! I never thought that THEY would get to my grandmother, angie, but apparently there is no stopping Ticketmaster. In a deliciously evil coupe, they were able to buy off angie and have her sabatage Rutgers' database. All of Rutgers' important stats are stored on a secure system. That system, if you must know, is randomly scribbled notes on "Darth Maul Post-its". Well, in the guise of "cleaning up", angie must have purposely and intentionally hacked into this system and destroyed the material. This abuse of discretion disturbs Coach K and he vows to pay personal attention to future recaps. He was also embarassed by how well "mudd's" site is. While he thanks Mudd for the compliments regarding this site, Kronic knows that he's been slacking. "I may never get to the point where i'm giving recaps of each game, but the least i can do is give you a glimpse of what it's like behind the scenes with these boys."




This reporter wanted to incorporate the rise and fall (and rise again) of the graduating Lazarous with greek mythology. However, said reporter is lazy and tired and doesn't have the energy to look it up. So, suffice to say, Lazarous was touted as the savior of RU football, but failed to live up to that glory. He lost his job to injury (and ineffectiveness) in his junior year. Come senior year, however, Lazarous reemerged as a leader and put up some impressive numbers. He and WR McGuil were able to (temporarily) break all of RU's career records, despite medicore beginnings. Just goes to show you how bad RU was before Coach K took over.




There are those who think that Hodges remarkable season should be the top story of 2008. Granted, he did win the Heisman as a Sophmore (redshirt), and he did set the NCAA records for rushing yards and rushing tds in a season. But he decided to bolt for the NFL, so screw him. Let's take a look at the real hero of the Scarlet Knights, Jeff Robinson.

Jeff Robinson came to the Knights at its lowest points. Some questioned why such a great player would come to such a lowly school, but Robinson believed in the system. With Hall at the other bookend, Robinson was able to anchor the defensive backfield of the Knights. He also managed to set the school record for career rushing yards. In 2008, Coach Kronic decided to utilize Jeff solely on defense. The results were amazing as Jeff was well on his way to breaking the season sack record. However, a horrible injury in the middle of the season saw Robinson's college career come to a shocking end. Wanting to see his goal of Rutgers becoming a dominant force to its conclusion, Robinson took it upon himself to train fellow Cornerback Dorsey. With his guidance, Dorsey came out of nowhere to break the sack record himself and become a 1st team all-american. Similarly, Hodges broke most of Robinson's rushing records in 2008.

Refusing to end on such a down note, Robinson rehabbed intensively and made it back for the Sugar Bowl. It was a moral victory for both Jeff and the school. He was the epitome of what it means to be a Scarlet Knight and his presence will be missed.

Here's to you Mr. Robinson....Enjoy the NFL.




Coach Kronic made the mistake of trying to fight ticketmaster, and as a result, Rutgers almost fell off the planet. In an attempt to protect students from outrageous handling fees, Kronic Fatigue tried to implement a structure that didn’t require the overpowering monopoly from gauging prices. To counter this, Ticketmaster erased all of Rutgers history from it’s collective hard-drive. Gone were all the scores and highlights from all Rutgers games. ESPN wasn’t allowed to report any of the scores and if people on the street even uttered the “r word” they were beaten to a bloody pulp by Ticketmaster employees. Not willing to see another Rutgers student brutalized on the streets of college ave (other than the ones the Frats try to murder), Kronic reached an agreement with the almighty Ticketmaster. So, as of the 2007 season, it is no longer a crime to speak of the school or its football program. In return for monthly updates, Coach Kronic had to agree to not allow any game by game recaps.

“The lesson from all of this,” said a distraught Kronic, “is that you can’t fight ticketmaster.”

If only he had talked to Eddie beforehand.




Try to follow along for a second, if you will. This “breaking” news story is the preview of the 2005 season. It’s being written on September 17th, 2003. The season was actually played towards the end of August. So I’m in the present (obviously), writing about a future that has already happened in the past. I hate to break the 4th wall down (or, for you netcop followers, break “kayefabe”), but writing for this dynasty is hard at times. I really wanted to play the game today, but I was about two seasons behind in my recaps. So, if this prelude ruins the fantasy for you, I’m sorry, but sometimes I need to keep myself sane with reality. But then, I realize my reality consists of sitting in my apartment writing recaps for a video game and I start to wonder what’s wrong with my therapist.

But enough about my problems…on with the show.

Coach Kronic put his recruiting hat on and hit the road, and came back with a pile full of young studs. With the 13th best recruiting class in the nation, RU looks ready to make the Big East regret their decision. 5 blue chip players will be wearing red this season, along with eight (!) 4 star players. Rutgers continues to become quicker and stronger especially in their defensive backfield. Where as Kronic was hesitant in the past to use his cbs on offense, this season he only cares about one thing: winning. A cheap win is still a win, and this year Rutgers is going to put on a show.




The whispers started around 8 am on college ave. By noon, there was a buzz in the air. By 3 pm, students were tipping over the grease trucks in protest. The unthinkable had happened. Rutgers, ranked 40th in the entire nation with a winning record in the Big East and overall failed to make a bowl. That’s not the half of it though. In what has to be one of the most shocking events since the ending of Usual Suspects, Rutgers University has been thrown out of the Big East and replaced by Connecticut.

Kronic Fatigue was not available for comment. The one reporter who was able to track down Coach K for comment is still missing and his body isn’t likely to be found. The coach did release a written statement which read in part: “You don’t need to be that commie Steve X to realize what’s going on here. This is a conspiracy of the first order. They are flat out scared of us and what we’ve been able to accomplish in two short years. We will not take this laying down. Next year, we are out for blood.”

What does this mean for the Rutgers program? The future is uncertain, and chaos reigns supreme in New Brunswick.




Kronic Fatigue’s first official recruiting process appears to be a success. With their main goal to get faster and more athletic, RU took a big step in the right direction. Blue chipper CB Anthony Baker will help fill the void left by CB#32. Alongside Baker will be another speedy freshman, Jeff Robinson. The addition of two great athletes at the corners will give Kronic numerous options. Expect to see one, if not both, of these guys line up on the offensive side of the ball. Another great addition to the RU squad is left tackle Jason Fritzgerald. This beefy freshman will sure up the offensive line, a problem last year for the Knights. Other, lesser talented freshmen include a pair of defensive tackles and middle linebackers. The one area where RU failed in the recruiting department is at kicker. “Walk on” Wendell Wiley made the team, but looks to have his work cut out for him.

In an interesting turn of events, athletic director Kronic Fatigue decided to schedule all of RU’s non conference games against Ivy League schools. “Let’s be honest, nobody comes to RU as their first choice. This school was the silver medal for a lot of students. And I know that beating the bejesus out of those snobby smart schools that rejected our students will give us great satisfaction. I know that when I was growing up, bullying the eggheads was so much fun. I wouldn’t have traded it for the world.”

Of course, there is always the chance that the Ivy schools will beat RU, sending its students even further into depression. If that’s the case, at least business will be good for the Knight Club and Corner Tavern.




[This is the press conference that was held days before Rutgers would leave for West Virginia. Much of the content had to be removed, as this is a family website.]

KF: Before I take questions, I’d like to give an assessment of where I think the team is. When I came back to Rutgers as the Athletic Director, I knew I wasn’t going to immediately enjoy the success that I’ve had in the NFL. Granted, I dominated for years and years in the NFL, taking The Newark Heels to numerous superbowls and even the first undefeated season since the Dolphins. But the college game is different and it’s going to take me time to adjust. Some of these formations are flat out wacky. There little differences that are causing major communication problems with my team. For instance, I was yelling at my QB in the VT game to “delta, delta delta!” In the NFL, delta means for the qb to look downfield again. However, qb#5 thought delta meant to hurdle over and over again and proceeded to do so all the way to a 20 yard sack. I’ve basically had to throw out my NFL playbook and start over. In fact, I liked buffalo’s plays so much that I incorporated them in the next week’s game. It didn’t work at all. And let’s be honest, it’s not like I have a Michael Vick to just give the ball to and let him work his magic. But I think we are moving in the right direction. There was a recent poll of Rutgers students and alumni that asked “Do you think our football program is moving in the right direction?” I was very pleased to learn that 17% said we were moving in the right direction while only 14% said we were getting worse.

Reporter: Coach, if I may interject, what about the other 69% who answered with “we have a football program?”

KF: You know, I’m tired of you reporters always twisting the data to prove your point. Are some (most) Rutgers fans indifferent to our program? Sure. Does it make me feel uncomfortable when our home games are marked by awkward silence? Of course. Do I lay in my bed and cry myself to sleep? No doubt, but that’s for personal reasons, not this football program. This is just the first step in the long process of getting RU up to at least mediocre. Where we go from there is anybody’s guess.

Reporter: Do you think you’ll score another TD this season, or what that one play in the opening game a fluke?

KF: This press conference is over.




Athletic director Kronic Fatigue took little time in choosing who will be drawing up the x’s and o’s for Rutgers. In naming himself coach, Kronic may have bitten off a little more than he can chew. “That’s nonsense,” said an irked Kronic, “Have you ever seen me at a wings eating contest? You’d be shocked at how much I can chew.” On a serious note, Kronic will have little time to get to know his players before the season starts. “It’s tough. It’s not like I recruited these guys. Heck, I haven’t even had a real chance to talk with them. Take CB#32 for instance. To me, he’s just a position and a number. But that’s gottta change if we are going to come together as a team. I have to stop thinking of him as a Corner Back who wears the number 32, and instead think of him as an individual, CB#32.”

Speaking of CB#32, Kronic has decided to let him go both ways (calm down homophobes, we are talking offense and defense here) and will start him at tailback. “It’s an honor,” said CB#32, “in fact, the guys have been teasing me in the locker room and have nicknamed me RB#32.” On the record, Kronic says that this will give RU an added weapon on offense. However, reliable sources have said that Kronic has unofficially stated that his real reason is, “Well, we have one friggin good player on the entire roster, of course I’m going to ride that horse until he’s dead.” Today’s final practice concluded with Kronic giving a speech about how there is no I in team.




In a stunning turn of events, Madden legend "Kronic Fatigue" has decided to leave the safe confines of the NFL and venture into the uncharted realm of college football. It appears that Kronic was so disgusted by "dmbblows" performance running their alma mata, "Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, for registration information, press one, for grade inquiry, press..." that he had to come back and right the ship.

"It's great to be back" said Kronic, as he was ordering extra hot sauce on his Fat Mr. C with egg (hold the rabbit food). "Hopefully, I'll turn this program around, but I may have to tear it down first...Hey, I said no lettuce!" Kronic is going to have his work cut out for him though, as he's never coached on the college level. In fact, he's only played 3 college games in his entire career, and that was while he was very very drunk. Nevertheless, Kronic's extreme confidence and utter lack of a life will be a deadly combination for RU.

The only thing that can come between Kronic and the championship now is the fact that he doesn't drive and needs his mom to pick up the game for him.