College Blog Blog Network
How HBO ruined the UConn women’s basketball team’s historic streak for me 04.01.17 at 10:20 am ET
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Geno Auriemma (Kevin Jairaj/USA Today Sports)

Geno Auriemma (Kevin Jairaj/USA Today Sports)

Aren’t so many things usually defined by gut reactions, the kind that don’t have time to be measured or thought out?

When I found out the University of Connecticut women’s basketball team’s historic 111-game win streak had been brought to an end by Mississippi State (who had the Bulldogs in the pool?) my first thought was, “Good!” (For details of the loss, click here.)

That’s too bad. We should want to appreciate historic accomplishments.

But here’s the thing: I can’t get past those the images of Geno Auriemma offering tours of his wine cellar, hitting golf balls, and insinuating to the HBO audience he had uncovered the secrets to winning basketball games and living life. And that is totally unfair.

I don’t know Auriemma at all. I know Jackie MacMullan, and she seemed to like him when penning the coach’s autobiography. His players, both past and present, don’t appear to have a problem with him. But, once again, the usually fascinating behind-the-scenes construct HBO rolled out has made me really root against its featured team.

UConn: The March to Madness 2017 Episodic #2

Rex Ryan. Joe Philbin. Marvin Lewis. Mike Smith. Jeff Fisher. And now Auriemma.

The series “The March to Madness” following around the Huskies this season did exactly what every “Hard Knocks” accomplished, put those running these teams in an awkward light.

The series actually made me like the UConn players. It personalized them and did help chip away at the perception it was Geno and the Robots. But as gracious as Auriemma was after the loss, the perception had already been cemented.

I just couldn’t get by my feeling throughout the weekly television series that HBO was allowing one big Geno Auriemma ego stroke. That didn’t sit well, all the way until that final shot by the Bulldogs.

It’s not fair. It’s probably not a popular opinion on a day we should be appreciating UConn’s mind-blowing win streak. But it’s also the world we live in, one where are perceptions are often defined on heavily-produced television shows and 140 characters.

Oh well.

Boston police didn’t make single Super Bowl-related arrest after Patriots’ win 02.06.17 at 12:01 pm ET
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There was perhaps no better example that nobody knows how to celebrate championships like Boston.

“Officer McGuire” of the Boston Police Dept. told TMZ that there wasn’t a single Super Bowl-related arrest following the Patriots’ overtime win over the Falcons.

“There were zero arrests. It was a great night and we thank all our fans for being responsible,” Maguire told TMZ, adding, “It was a lot of happy celebrating … We’re experienced at winning!”

John Cena: ‘I kind of run a parallel life with Tom Brady’ 01.23.17 at 12:52 pm ET
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It shouldn’t come as a surprise that John Cena truly understands what makes the Patriots tick.

The WWE star, and actor, grew up in Massachusetts and played football at Springfield College. So when he turned down the opportunity to offer a hype video for his hometown team, there was a very good explanation that came with the denial.

“That’s what’s great about New England,” Cena said. “You can look at it from all the [Tom] Brady sound bytes and all the [Bill] Belichick sound bytes. They don’t need to get hype. They just do really, really well.”

There was also the us against them mentality that Cena said he enjoys, explaining, “I run kind of like a parallel life with Tom Brady.”

Report: Freddy Garcia agrees to deal with Yankees 02.01.11 at 7:55 am ET
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According to, starting pitcher Freddy Garcia has agreed to a minor-league deal with the Yankees which would pay the veteran $1.5 million if he makes the major league roster. The 35-year-old could make as much as $5.1 million if all of his incentives are reached. Garcia totaled a 4.64 ERA in 28 starts with the White Sox in 2010, throwing 157 innings. He battled shoulder injuries throughout the previous three seasons, having been considered by the Red Sox prior to the 2008 season.

Read More: Freddy Garcia, Rumor Mill,
Red Sox, Martinez talk two years 09.01.10 at 11:00 am ET
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According to a source familiar with the negotiations, the Red Sox and Victor Martinez have talked about a proposal for a two-year contract. The 31-year-old Martinez is a free agent at the end of this season. The Boston Globe was first to report the offer. The Globe also reports that the Red Sox and Blue Jays were close to a deal that would have brought first baseman Lyle Overbay from Toronto.

Read More: Rumor Mill,
Rangers also ‘kicked tires’ on Lowrie 07.30.10 at 12:20 pm ET
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According to a major league source, the Rangers ‘kicked the tires’ in regards to potentially acquiring Red Sox infielder Jed Lowrie, whom Texas had some interest in as a utility infielder prior to Lowrie contracting mononucleosis during spring training. The Rangers will be without starting second baseman Ian Kinsler for the next few weeks after he was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left groin.’s Alex Speier reported that the Padres also showed some interest in Lowrie prior acquiring Miguel Tejada.

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Source: Red Sox, Jays not matching up 07.27.10 at 10:30 am ET
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According to a source familiar with the negotiations, the Red Sox and Blue Jays currently aren’€™t a match in terms of making a deal for reliever Scott Downs. While the source points out the dynamic could change before the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline, there is ‘€œnothing right now.’€’€™s Alex Speier is reporting, however, that the Jays continue to aggressively scout Red Sox Single-A pitcher Roman Mendez.

Speier reported earlier Monday that the Blue Jays have been asking for organizations’€™ ‘€œelite prospects’€ in return for Downs. When appearing on The Big Show last Friday, Peter Gammons reported that the Jays asked for Sox shortstop prospect Jose Iglesias in exchange for Downs.

As for Mendez, a source has told Speier that the Jays have sent multiple scouts to see a number of the young right-hander’€™s starts. Mendez, who turned 20 on Sunday, was dominant in his U.S. debut in 2009, producing a 1.99 ERA and striking out 47 while walking eight in the Gulf Coast League.

This year, however, he has struggled. He started the year at Single-A Greenville, but that assignment was short-lived after he got off to an 0-2 start with an 11.40 ERA, striking out 18 and walking 10 in 15 innings. He was sent to extended spring training and then reassigned to the Lowell Spinners, for whom he is 1-3 with a 4.50 ERA with 29 strikeouts and 17 walks in 28 innings.

Mendez, who is listed at 6-foot-2 and 180 pounds, features a big arm, occasionally touching the mid-90s with his fastball while still working to develop a secondary arsenal.

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Sox among those interested in Buck? 07.20.10 at 10:57 am ET
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According to Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun, the Red Sox were one of the teams represented at the Blue Jays-Royals game Monday night and surmises that at least part of the presence of Sox pro scout Steve Peck was because of Boston’s interest in catcher John Buck. The other organizations Elliott references as being in attendance were the Tigers, Yankees, and Phillies.

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Rangers still interested in Lowell 07.16.10 at 9:09 pm ET
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According to major league source familiar with the situation, the Texas Rangers continue to monitor the status of Mike Lowell,who is currently on the 15-day disabled list with soreness in his surgically repaired right hip. The source suggests the Rangers may have increased interest in making a deal for Lowell depending on how the market unfolds as the trade deadline draws closer.

The Red Sox and Rangers had agreed to a trade for Lowell — along with $9 million of the $12 million owned the infielder this season — in December before Texas backed out of the deal because of concerns regarding the infielder’s hip.

The Rangers have continued to talk with the Red Sox about Lowell throughout the season. With rookie first baseman Chris Davis hitting just .203 (after going 0-for-3 with a walk Thursday night), and Texas having to include first base prospect Justin Smoak in the Cliff Lee trade, there remains a potential need at first for Texas. The source reports the Rangers will continue to explore other trade options before accelerating negotiations for Lowell.

Lowell was out on the Fenway Park field and, according to Red Sox manager Terry Francona, “took some ground balls, [hit] some balls off the tee and in the cage. He actually felt pretty good. We’re going to start ramping him back up, too.”

For more Red Sox coverage see the team page at

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Ortiz: ‘I believe I’ll be back’ with the Red Sox 07.13.10 at 5:45 pm ET
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ANAHEIM, Calif. — David Ortiz, who told Monday that he would like a multi-year contract after his current deal, told prior to Tuesday’s All-Star Game that he thinks he will return as a member of the Red Sox next season.

“I believe I’ll be back [with the Red Sox],” said Ortiz, whose current deal includes a $12.5 million team option for 2011. “[Expletive] yeah. What should I believe? I’ll tell you one thing, I’m not going to go the Angels. This is too far.”

Ortiz won the Home Run Derby Monday night, and hits the second half hitting .263 with a .945 OPS and 18 home runs. For more coverage from the All-Star Game see the Red Sox team page at

Read More: Rumor Mill,