To disgruntled blog readers: You know by now there are big changes at MiamiHerald.com affecting this blog and others. One is that commenters must now log in with a Facebook account. Another (unfortunately) is a redesign that has bumped my blog from its usual spot on the upper lefthand corner of the Sports front. Another (unfortunately again) is that all comments prior to yesterday have disappeared; it's as if everything started over on Thursday. Folks, these changes are corporate and not my idea or wish. I gauge from the solid response to our latest poll that our overall blog traffic remains strong. I invite our longtime regulars -- our Blog Family -- to stay strong with us through the changes.
1) It is FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 19. Congrats to ex-Cane Devin Hester for last night setting the NFL career record for most return TDs. 2) I'm in Random Evidence Laboratories today bringing forth the Sunday notes-column package. 3) In The Previous Blogpost (ITPB): Ryan Tannehill poll, LeBron's new hairline, Kevin Olsen, NFL Pix 'n Fantasy, SOPY Top 10, 3D-printed car & more. 4) Follow us on Twitter @gregcote. Also Facebook, Instagram and Vine.
YOU SELECT CANTON'S NEXT HALL OF FAME CLASS: This week the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, O. revealed the 113 people on its 2015 ballot. It'll be pared to 25 names in November and to 15 finalists in January before four to eight new members are elected during Super Bowl Week. This poll includes the 10 people most likely, in my view, to produce the next class of inductees. Our list includes the five most prominent 2014 finalists back for another shot, and the five most prominent first-time eligibles, who are designated in the poll by an asterisk. Say this is your Hall of Fame ballot and you may vote for as many as five. Who are your picks?
NFL WEEK 3 PICKS: Good start last night with Falcons winning and covering -- no, smothering -- the poor Buccaneers. Click on Week 3 Gems for all our latest prediction capsules (have the Dolphins beating Chiefs, but not covering), and on Talking Football for our Friday Page NFL column. I write how this week's big game -- Seahawks-Broncos, the Super Bowl rematch and likely SB preview -- delivers a welcome break from the controversies that have engulfed the league.
ON JAMEIS WINSTON'S LATEST IMAGE-HIT: So FSU's Heisman-winning quarterback stands up on a table in the middle of campus and shouts an unfortunately popular string of words that are juvenile, vulgar and sexist: "F--- her right in the p----!" Naturally it gets out. He is suspended for a half-game -- the first half of Saturday's biggie vs. Clemson. Oh, Jameis. So stupid for two reasons: 1) Did you think, in the age of smart-phones turning everybody into photographers and videographers, that this wouldn't go viral and get you in trouble? Can you be that dense? 2) You of all, people. You, who have been the subject of rape allegations, shouting mysogenist garbage. The good news: What you shouted just gave somebody at Urban Outfitters an idea for a new sweatshirt slogan!
Poll result: Quantifying the erosion of confidence in Ryan Tannehill: We asked your degree of faith in the quarterback's Dolphins future (you may still vote), and more than one in three voters -- 34.5 percent -- answered, "I've seen enough. He isn't the answer. Then it was 31.4% for "not given up but serious doubts," 28.5% for "still back him but must see improvement" and only 4.7% for "very optimistic." Opinions are hardening, with a negligible 0.8% still undecided. This is a clear erosion of faith from previous Tannehill polls. In August 2012 we asked what you realistically expect of his Miami career and most, 49.2%, said "very good, at least a few Pro Bowls." In July 2013 we asked waht you see as his future and most, 42.7%, said "very good." Now, he must earn back the former supporters who have lost faith.
NEW JETER FAREWELL AD A TEAR-JERKER: This is Gatorade's new farewell ad for retiring Yankee Derek Jeter, and it's a good one, a wonderful use of Sinatra's signature song. It brought a tear to my eye ... and I'm a Red Sox fan!
BOYCOTT URBAN OUTFITTERS: Urban Outfitters is a Philadelphia-headquartered clothing company whose idea of being hip and cutting-edge is to consistently insult and offend. It's time we put them out of business. The latest UO outrage was a "vintage" Kent State University sweatshirt with a blood-splatter pattern. It was quickly removed from shelves after complaints from grownups who still associate Kent State with the 1970 tragedy (see photo). UO said, "We deeply regret that this item was perceived negatively." Bulls---! Don't put it on our misperception. Put it on your own business plan. UO's previous controversies included "fashion symbols" that resembled Nazi stars, a handgun-shaped Christmas ornament, Che Guevara clothing and a "Ghettopoly" game board. Enough. Boycott.
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