Marlins add amateur nudist Redmond to manager merry-go-round; plus Heat confidence poll, my Halloween video, Tannehill, SOPY rank & more
[1) It is THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 1. Did you have a happy Halloween? We're a mid-traffic neighborhood. Probably candied about 30 kids. 2) Enough with the Dwayne Bowe-to-Dolphins speculation and rumors! (Please?) 3) Visit our video channel atYouTube/TheGregCote (on hiatus; new vids coming soon) and join us on Twitter @gregcote]
Halloween video from me to you: Click HERE to watch. It stars me, new Heater Ray Allen, defrocked Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen, Dolphins coach Joe Philbin, and the sublime Lauren Tannehill. Enjoy!
MARLINS HIRE MIKE REDMOND AS MANAGER: Marlins interviewed three others including the ghost of Larry Bowa, who last managed in 2004 and turns 67 in December, but the clear frontrunner all along was Redmond, the former Marlins catcher. He has only Single-A experience as a manager but is praised as ready by those who know him. I like the hire. Redmond is perhaps best remembered during his Marlins years for once entering the batting cage nude -- wearing only spikes and batting gloves -- to help break a losing streak. That isn't legend; he admits it. And it worked. The season was 2003. The Marlins won the World Series.
OPENING NIGHT: RINGS ON, BANNER UP, HEAT BEATS CELTICS: [Update: Heat beat Celtics, 120-107, behind 29 from D-Wade, 26 from LeBron and 19 apiece from Ray Allen and Chris Bosh. Click on The Routine Of Excellence for my column from the game]. And the curtain lifts on Year 3 of the Big 3. The Heat NBA championship that was won in June and celebrated with a parade is celebrated anew onight as the 2012-13 season commences. A ring ceremony and lifting of the championship banner will precede a game against the Boston Celtics, who most experts expect will meet Miami in the Eastern Conference finals. Ray Allen switching sides only enlivens an already heated rivalry. Boston is counting on Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett (pictured with LeBron) to once again play younger than they are. The Celtics lead the Heat's East roadblock alsong with Indiana and perhaps Chicago. Waiting in the NBA Finals, should Miami returns, figures to be the fortified L.A. Lakers, Oklahoma City again, or perhaps San Antonio. I know Heat fans are confident; the question is how confident? Vote now.
Poll result: Sorry LeBron, but it's still D-Wade: We asked in a recent blog poll who your favorite Heat player is, and Dwyane Wade had 60.1 percent to LeBron James' 34.2. The other 5.7% chose "someone else."
NFL PIX 'N FANTASY: OK on one, not so much on the other... NFL predix: Had a decent Week 8 on my Friday pix page, going 10-4 overall and 7-6-1 vs. the betting line. Nailed two outright upsets with Falcs over Eagles and Raiders over Chiefs, but, oh, missing that Miami game hurt. What was I thinking! Greg's Lobos: My fantasy team sucks, or I do running it. Fell to 2-6 with a 124-87 loss. Had nobody over 17 points. Not giving up on a playoff spot but the 'Bos need to pick it up. Let's go!
TANNEHILL INJURY ONLY A BRUISE: MRI results on Ryan Tannehill's injured left leg showed no structural damage to the knee or quad, only a deep bruise. His status for Sunday's game at Indianapolis is a legitimate questionable. "What he can or can't do Wednesdday and Thursday will deteremine his availability," a club spokesman told us. Meanwhile Matt Moore's status rises as one of NFL's better backup QBs.
McKinnie and strip clubs: Hey here's an only-in-Miami story for you. Bryant McKinnie is being sued in Miami-Dade Circuit Court by the father of rap star Trick Daddy. The allegation: That McKinnie, Ravens offensive tackle and former Miami Hurricane, ran up $375,000 in bills at South Florida strip clubs -- money borrowed from the dad of Daddy. McKinnie told the Baltimore Sun the suit us "bogus."
Marlins 40-1 odds for next World Series: Bovada has new odds out already for 2013 World Series and leaders are Tigers 6-1, Yankees 7-1 and Giants 10-1. Miami is a respectable 40-1 but unfortunately that's fourth in the NL East after the 12-1 Nationals and 14-1 Braves and Phillies.
PANDA TIME! FITNESS IS OVERRATED: Moms, give your child that extra Twinkie. Dads, let that gym membership lapse. Kids, fat is the new thin! The Giants' Pablo "Panda" Sandoval is the World Series MVP -- the man sitting atop all of baseball -- following his team's sweep of the Tigers. Sandoval in the postseason led the Giants in home runs, RBIs and carbs. Here he is. Mr. America!
SOPY RANKINGS (WEEK 9): ALPHABET SOUP: E.J. LEADS B.J.: This college football season marks the blog debut of our weekly State Offensive Player of the Year (SOPY) rankings, which I like to call the "Sunshine State Heisman." Our chart encompasses the most productive seasons of any quarterback, running back or receiver from the state's seven FBS teams: Miami, Florida and FSU, FIU and FAU, and South Florida and UCF. (Note: Rankings consider only passing, rushing and receiving, not returns). Our formula awards one point per offensive yard gained running or receiving and a half-point per yard passing, plus six bonus points for touchdowns thrown or scored. Because our rankings are cumulative, players on a bye week take a temporary hit that evens out over course of season. After Week 9 it's Florida State's E.J. Manuel leading for a third straight week, but narrowly over South Florida counterpart B.J. Daniels. The SOPY Top 10 entering Week 10:
Rank (LW) Player, Team-pos. SOPY Pts. Week=Year
1 (1) E.J. Manuel, FSU-qb 157 = 1,483.5
2 (3) B.J. Daniels, South Florida-qb 231.5 = 1,457
3 (2) Stephen Morris, Miami-qb BYE = 1,241
4 (4) Jake Medlock, FIU-qb 110.5 = 1,112
5 (6) Blake Bortles, UCF-qb 173.5 = 1,099.5
6 (5) Chris Thompson, FSU-rb DNP = 965
7 (7) Jeff Driskel, Florida-qb 88.5 = 946
8 (8) Graham Wilbert, FAU-qb 165.5 = 941
9 (9) Mike Gillislee, Florida-rb 117 = 834
10 (--) Latavius Murray, UCF-rb 218 = 700
Bubble: Duke Johnson, Miami-rb, 692.
State of the State rankings: 1. Florida (7-1); 2. FSU (8-1); 3. UCF (6-2); 4. Miami (4-4); 5. South Florida (2-6); 6. FAU (2-6); 7. FIU (1-8).
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