LATEST VIDEO! ON DOLPHINS CUTTING CHAD JOHNSON: Click on YouTube/TheGregCote for my channel of frequent mini-commentaries, including the newest on the departure of receiver Chad Johnson. Click Chad Johnson's Out Pattern for today's latest column by me. I say the Dolphins were right to cut Johnson. Have your say in the poll below.
[1) It is WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 15. Marlins lost a third straight game by shutout last night. OK the plastic-bat experiment is not working. Back to the wood. 2) Thanks again for ESPN's Outside The Lines for having us as a guest for a LeBron James/Tiger Woods-related segment. Lots of face-time for me. Ratings must have been plummeting! 3) Thanks, too, to old friend Dan Le Batard for having us on 790 The Ticket for his entire show yesterday. Fun. Maybe we'll do it again, who knows? 4) Join us on Twitter @gregcote]
On the Latest Hard Knocks: Most notable from Tuesday night's Dolphins/Hard Knocks on HBO: 1) Coach Joe Philbin is shown telling Chad Johnson he's done. Chad: "I let you down a little. A lot. " Joe: "I don't see the mesh right now." 2) The news that QB David Garrard injured his knee not on the field but at home watching his kids in the pool. 3) Offensive coordinator Mike Sherman's blistering talk to his unit, including telling rookie TE Michael Egnew, "Get your head out of your ass!" 4) QB Ryan Tannehill, made to sing as all rookies must, serenading the team with the perhaps prescient "Lean On Me." 5) GM Jeff Ireland on his wide receivers: "We got 4's, 5s and 6s. We gotta find who the 1s, 2s and 3s are." Honorable mention: Sherman's Bobby Bowden-esque expletive, "Gosh-daggit!"
DOLPHINS CUTTING CHAD JOHNSON: RIGHT OR WRONG?: The Dolphins cut receiver Chad Johnson Sunday night in the wake of his dropping the only pass thrown to him Friday night and then his arrest a day later for head-butting his wife in a domestic incident. Monday morning, Dolphins defensive leader Karlos Dansby blasted the team for not giving Johnson a second chance. Coach Joe Philbin later took a mild swipe at Dansby ("I'm of the opinion you should keep things in-house") and explained Johnson was released based on an "overall body of evidence" that Johnson and the Dolphins were not a "good fit." I support the Dolphins' decision on Johnson. Maybe you side with Dansby. Vote and say why.
Poll result: Dear Hanley: Boooo!: We asked in the previous blogpost how Marlins fans should react to Hanley Ramirez in his first return as a Dodger (you can still vote) and booing led with 44.2 percent. Another 27.2 voted for silence and 24.1 for cheering, with 4.5 not sure.
HURRICANES FOURTH-RANKED TO WIN ACC: Bovada's preseason college football coneference odds find Miami a surprisingly high fourth at 9-1 to win the ACC, after Florida State (an even 1-1), Virginia Tech (3-1) and Clemson (5-1). FIU is the Sun Belt favorite at 5-2, with FAU next to last at 30-1. The power-packed SEC is topped by Alabama 2-1 and LSU 5-2, with Florida sixth at 12-1. Other major-league faves are USC in the Pac-12 at a prohibitive 5-9; UCF topping Conference USA at 11-4; Oklahoma an even 1-1 in the Big 12; Louisville 2-1 to take the Big East with South Florida next at 7-2; and the Big Ten co-led by Michigan and Wisconsin at 9-5.
NFL INDIVIDUAL AWARDS ODDS: Also from Bovada, Packer Aaron Rodgers is MVP favorite at 11-2, followed by Patriot Tom Brady at 13-2, then a dropoff to Saint Drew Brees at 9-1 and Eagle Michael Vick and Bronco Peyton Manning both 10-1. Offensive rookie pick is Colt Andrew Luck at 5-2, then Redskin Robert Griffin III at 9-2. Defensive rookie pick is Panther Luke Kuechly at 4-1. Passing yards fave is Brees at 9-2, rushing yards Texan Arian Foster 9-2, and receiving yards Lion Calvin Johnson 7-2. The only Dolphin appearing in any category is Ryan Tannehill, sixth for offensive rookie at 10-1.
BASKING IN THE GLOW OF GOLD: Ghurka, manufacturer of upscale leather goods, is coming out in September with a line of "man bags" called the Ghurka Cavalier series inspired by LeBron James and partly designed by LeBron' personal stylsit, Rachel Johnson. (Who knew LeBron had a personal stylist?) The three sizes will range in price from $695 to $1,495. I'm guessing the biggest of the three bags will be large enough to hold an NBA championship trophy, an Olympic gold medal and the adulation of millions. At left: One of the he-purses in LeBron's collection. Above: LeBron (lower left) and his Team USA mates exalt as well they should in Sunday's gold-medal triumph over Spain.
D-Wade's fantasy camp: Men, would you spend big bucks to hear Dwyane Wade pretend that he is truly impressed by your mad skills on a basketball court? Read on! Wade's second annual fantasy camp for men 35 and older is this Thursday through Sunday, August 16-19 at Loews Miami Beach. And it's only $12,500! But at least the list of coaches is seriously impressive, including Wade, Erik Spoelstra, Tim Hardaway, Rick Barry, Frank Martin and Jim Larranaga. Visit dwyanewadefantasycamp.com to register or for more info.
OLYMPIC WRAP-UP: I guess I'm the only soul on Earth who was disappointed with Sunday night's Closing Ceremonies from London, a very disjointed music-themed extravaganza. There were rumors of a big closing number by the Rolling Stones, Elton John and Paul McCartney, which might have redeemed the whole show. Never happened. Rule of thumb: When your show's most talked-about aspect is a Spice Girls reunion, you're in trouble. Pertinent final medals leaders.
United States 46G - 29S - 29B -- 104
China 38 - 27- 23 -- 88
Russia 24 - 26 - 32 -- 82
Great Britain 29 - 17 - 19 -- 65
Germany 11 - 19 - 14 -- 44
Cote d'Ivoire 0 - 0 - 0 -- 0
Cote, the Official National Team of This Blog, disappointed with nary a single medal. You let us down, d'Ivores. You did not do my name proud. Sincerely yours, Greg d'Ivoire, The Miami Herald.
UH-OH. HERE COMES A POLITICAL ITEM: ("What the--this is supposed to be a bleepin' sports blog you moron!") Mitt Romney's choice of Paul Ryan as a running mate is interesting. Ryan looks like Romney's son. At left, Romney relays a story about that time Paul broke curfew as a teen and Dad took away the keys to the yacht for an entire week. A movie about this campaign could be called WHITE & WHITER. The Republicans fight the perception they are for the rich in terms of tax breaks. Given that, I'm not sure if I think the Romney/Ryan campaign logo (right) is a smart idea. Cannot confirm rumors that, if this ticket is elected, the presidential residence would henceforth be called The Whitest House. (Note: Since the preceding item will be seen as pro-Democrat, let me balance that by pointing out that Barack Obama has comically big ears, leading directly to America's staggering 8.3 percent unemployment rate).
Click back. Will be updating/adding much more to this latest blogpost. Maybe even some sports stuff...