Feb 052011

Feb 022011

The Cheesehead Orchestra plays the classics, despite the razzing from a rabid Steelers fan.

~ Thanks to Greta…

Jan 112011

PLANO, Texas, Jan. 10, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — The Tostitos brand, in partnership with the USO, today revealed surprise reunions with loved ones for U.S. troops live on field during halftime of the Tostitos BCS National Championship Game. The reunited troops played along side former college football all-stars in the recent Tostitos Connect to Home Bowl, which took place at Joint Base Balad in Iraq over the holidays. The one-of-a-kind college football bowl game experience was part of a series of activities led by Tostitos, a flagship brand of PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay division, and the USO to honor and celebrate U.S. military heroes. The on-field reunions also marked the kick-off to the Tostitos “Reunite America” campaign, a program that will foster consumer-requested reunions of all kinds nationwide during 2011.

Moments before the surprise reunions took place, family members of four Tostitos Connect to Home Bowl military players were recognized on field for the sacrifices they make on behalf of the country each and every day. Then, in a dramatic and emotionally charged moment, from behind an oversized banner emerged their loved ones – the troops serving overseas who had made the more than 7,500 mile journey to reunite with their families in person.

The Best Surprise A Kid Could Get

Among those reunited were:

* SSG Alton Day, U.S. Army, Elizabeth, N.C., his wife Gwendalyn (Gwen), sons Alton, Jr. (age 14) and Aydan (age 2), and daughters Alexandria (age 12) and Alannah (age 5)
* SPC Danyul Davis, U.S. Army, Houston, Texas, his wife Jalexus, son Jai (age 1) and brothers Jeremy Michael Powell and Guy DeJohn Jackson
* Sgt Louis Davis, U.S. Army, Ft. Bragg, N.C., his wife Stephanie, daughter Zaiyah (age 3), mom Linda S. David and sister Simona R. Green
* PO1 Terry Eady, U.S. Navy, Ocilla, Ga., his daughter TeOndra (age 9), son Terrvon (age 12) and cousin Henry Leroy Fisher, Jr.

Read more…

Jan 112011

To my friend Blackie SM, WHO does it better SM, Oregon or Alabama? Hmmm…lemme see–

~AP Auburn’s Cam Newton carries the ball as Oregon’s Kenny Rowe (58) falls to the turf during the second half of the BCS National Championship NCAA college football game Monday, Jan. 10, 2011, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

~ image courtesy of Auburn Tigers – Facebook Official Page

GLENDALE, Ariz. – Auburn running back Michael Dyer never heard any whistle, so he just kept running — past the tackler who thought he had him down and deep into Oregon territory.

Dyer broke stride, then took off on a once-in-a-lifetime run in the final minutes, setting up a field goal on the last play that led No. 1 Auburn over the No. 2 Ducks 22-19 in the BCS championship game Monday night.

The freshman running back upstaged Auburn’s Heisman-winning quarterback Cam Newton with a 37-yard run, in which he appeared down but wasn’t — his knee never hit the ground — as he rolled over Oregon defender Eddie Pleasant to put the Tigers in scoring position.

Three plays later, Dyer ran 16 yards to push the ball to the 1 and set up Wes Byrum’s 19-yard field goal with no time left. It was his sixth career game-winning field goal — the one that capped off a perfect, 14-0 season, brought the title back to Auburn for the first time since {1957} and left the Southeastern Conference on top for the fifth straight year.

“Fifty-three years, baby,” coach Gene Chizik said to the cheering crowd. “This is for you. War Eagle!”

A classic sequence to close out a wild finish — five crazy minutes of football that made up for the first 55, which were more of a bruising battle than the offensive masterpiece everyone had predicted.

The craziness began when Casey Matthews, son of the 1980s NFL linebacker Clay, knocked the ball from Newton’s hands while he was trying to ice a 19-11 lead.

Oregon’s offense, shut down by Nick Fairley & Co. for most of the night, moved 45 yards over the next 2:17 and Darron Thomas threw a shovel pass to LaMichael James for a touchdown. Thomas hit Jeff Maehl for the tying 2-point conversion with 2:33 left and the game was down to one possession.

And that possession will be remembered for one incredible play.

Dyer took the handoff from Newton and ran off right tackle for what looked like a 6- or 7-yard gain. Nothing routine about this one, though. He never heard a whistle, wasn’t sure his knee hit the ground, so he popped up and kept going. Almost everyone on the field had stopped playing, but the referee never blew the play dead. Dyer made it to the Oregon 23. An official’s review ensued and the replay showed that, indeed, his knee had never touched the turf.

“I was going out there, trying to make a play. I just kept my feet moving,” he said.

The freshman finished with 143 yards and was named Offensive Player of the Game — no small feat considering he had the Heisman Trophy winner, Newton, playing well on the same offense.

Newton threw for 265 yards and two touchdowns and ran for 64 yards, most in short, punishing bites.

It was a good performance, but not spectacular — par for the course in a game that was projected as a possible 60-55 shootout by Steve Spurrier and a 74-point touchdown-fest by the oddsmakers who set the over-under.

Wearing white jerseys, green pants and DayGlo shoes and socks, the Ducks got only 49 yards rushing from James. An offense that had been held under 37 points only once all year managed just the two touchdowns. The last one came on a simple shovel pass from Thomas, who finished with 363 yards — 81 of which came on a long pass to Maehl that set up the first touchdown.

Oregon was held below 37 points for only the second time all season and the fast-paced offense that turned most opponents into mush in the second half had trouble wearing down Auburn.

Fairley, Auburn’s 298-pound defensive tackle, did the most damage. He lived up to his reputation as a game-changer for better, with three tackles for loss, including a sack — and for worse, when he got a 15-yard penalty for shoving James’ face into the turf after the whistle.

Newton was a game-changer as always, keeping Auburn ahead in this tight game, the final outing in a season shadowed by an NCAA investigation into his failed recruitment by Mississippi State. The governing body cleared him to play before the SEC championship but said his father, Cecil, solicited money from the Bulldogs.

Cecil, not in the stands Monday night, missed a heck of a finish.

Toilet Paper Flies After Auburn Wins BCS Title

AUBURN, Ala. (AP) — It was easy to tell who won the BCS title game Monday: Toilet paper flew high and late into the night in Auburn.

Auburn fans celebrated the Tigers’ 22-19 win over Oregon in the BCS championship in their traditional way by rolling trees at Toomers Corner, located at an intersection just off campus.

“It’s great to be an Auburn Tiger!” thousands of fans cheered in the street.

The win gave the state of Alabama a unique claim with back-to-back BCS championships and Heisman trophies. Auburn and Cam Newton won this year, while Alabama and Mark Ingram won last year.

Toomer’s Corner

“Top Ten Things Cam Newton Can Say Now That He Won the Heisman Trophy.”

Congratulations Tigers!


Jan 042011

A limited number of Bears NFC Divisional Playoff tickets — probably only a few thousand seats — will go on sale at 10 a.m. Wednesday.

“The message is, ‘Get them fast,’ ” Bears spokesman Scott Hagel said. “They’ll be gone in minutes.”

About 90 percent of Soldier Field’s 61,500 seats for the divisional game have already been offered to season-ticket holders at prices, in some cases, more than 50 percent more expensive than regular season seats. The remaining tickets will be sold on-line and over the phone by Ticketmaster Wednesday morning.

The cheapest seat — likely in the end zone or western grandstand — will cost $107. United Club-level seats will set you back $559 each.

Once those tickets are sold, it will cost you at least $250 “just to get in the door,” ticketchest.com spokesman Mark Tuchsherer says.

“Right now you’re looking at tickets going for between $250 and $2,500,” Tuchsherer said. “We’re selling tickets in the $800 to $950 range for a 100-level seat.”

If you’re in the market for playoff tickets, it’s better to buy sooner than later, ticket brokers say.

“Prices will go up based on who the Bears’ opponent will be and the closer it is to game time,” Tuchsherer said. “Once we know who the opponent is people coming in from out of town start buying. That changes prices.”

At online ticket sites, including craigslist.com and stubhub.com, sellers are charging nearly $200 per ticket for nosebleed seats, $5,000 for United Club tickets and even more for the first few rows ringing the field.

On average, tickets on StubHub have sold for $345 each — with the price range from $175 to $1,877 per ticket.

The Bears playoff game is already among the hottest ticket on the StubHub market — second only to tickets for the Atlanta Falcons, the top-seed in the NFC. On Tuesday there were about 5,500 tickets available on StubHub, according to company spokeswoman Joellen Ferrer. So far, there have been strong ticket sales in Illinois and surrounding states.

“The market hasn’t set yet,” Ferrer said. “So prices are more reasonable now.”

~Sun Times


Lovie Smith: Bears feel Packers game helped prep them for playoffs

Jan 022011

Linebacker Pisa Tinoisamoa warms up before Sunday’s game against the Packers in Green Bay. (Brian Cassella/Tribune)

GREEN BAY, Wis. — A No. 2 seed, a first-round bye, at least one home NFC playoff game: The Bears already had opened up all of their postseason gifts by the time Sunday’s regular-season finale against the Packers started at Lambeau Field.

While the Packers entered the contest wearing their game faces, the Bears tried to at least look interested after the Atlanta Falcons sewed up the No. 1 seed in the NFC with an easy 31-10 win over Carolina.

Green Bay needed a victory to become a wild-card entrant; the Bears needed to stay sharp and stay healthy for the long run. And the injury bug struck quickly, as Bears linebacker Nick Roach suffered a shoulder injury early in the game and was declared out for the rest of the way.

“It’s about us taking another step,” Bears coach Lovie Smith said about his team’s goal for the day on WBBM radio before the game.

Bears running back Matt Forte came to play, surpassing the 1,000-yard mark for the season with a 25-yard run in the first quarter.

Check back all day for updates

With a game-time temperature of 19 degrees and winds of 14 miles-an-hour, the wind-chill factor was 5 degrees.

Dec 312010

~Take out the Packers Home Team!!! I command you! ~JP

See why the Bears and their fans can’t stand the dirty,cheap-shot packers! Dumb Cheeseheads…….Payton tossed over a bench,FB Suhey blind-sided,McMahon ambushed and Mike Singletary goes NUTS !!!

The NFL has announced that the Packers vs Bears game will be flexed to 3:15pm CT Sunday. This game will be nationally televised on FOX.

The Friday before the final regular-season game has been the final practice the last three seasons. But that wasn’t the case Friday in the Walter Payton Center as the Bears prepared for Sunday’s game at Lambeau Field and the postseason that will follow.

Bennett back at Bears’ final pre-playoffs practice

The Bears are assured of at least a No. 2 seed and a first-round bye in the NFC playoffs, but quarterback Jay Cutler says he is preparing to perform as usual in Sunday’s regular-season finale at Green Bay.

“I expect to be playing the whole game. That’s how I am preparing at this point,” Cutler said Wednesday at Halas Hall.

The Minnesota Vikings upset the Eagles 24-14 Tuesday night, securing the Bears’ slot with a guaranteed first-round bye.

“It helps us. Why wouldn’t I be happy about it?” Cutler said.
The Bears have a long shot at the first seed, pending the outcomes of the Falcons-Panthers game and the Saints-Buccaneers game. Regardless, Cutler says the Bears will play to win against their NFC North rivals.

“You probably could take a poll in this room right now and how many people would have picked Minnesota over Philly? So anything can happen in this league,” Cutler said. “We know that. I am sure Atlanta and New Orleans are preparing like it’s the Super Bowl. We just have to play and whatever happens, happens.”

Sunday’s game means everything to the Packers’ (9-6) playoff hopes.

“Lovie (Smith) said … we’re going to be playing, we’re going to be going and we’re going to be full-go on Sunday. So that’s what we expect,” Cutler said. “Hopefully we can continue to be playing at the level we’re playing.”

The Bears (11-4) will be seeking to sweep their NFC North schedule with a win at Green Bay. The Bears were the last team to sweep the division in 1987, when it was the NFC Central.

“I don’t think anyone has ever done it since they re-grouped everything, so that’s definitely in the back of our minds,” Cutler said. “We want to win the ball game. We don’t want to take a step back as a team or as an offense.”

By Fred Mitchell

Dec 302010

H/T: Gateway Pundit

Dec 262010

The Bears’ Nick Roach (53), Danieal Manning (38) and Charles Tillman (33) pursue a Jets’ fumble Sunday. Chris Harris recovered. (Nuccio DiNuzzo/Tribune)

The Bears took an important step toward securing a first-round bye in the NFC playoffs by outlasting the New York Jets 38-34 on Sunday at Soldier Field.

Jay Cutler threw for three touchdowns and ran for another as the Bears raised their record to 11-4 and improved their chances of earning the No. 2 seed and a bye. Cutler completed 13-of-25 passes for 215 yards and had a passer rating of 104.2

“This is playoff football,” Bears coach Lovie Smith said of the wild, back-and-forth game. “There’s not going to be any blowouts in playoff football. You have to finish and we did that.”

The Jets (10-5) still were in position to clinch a postseason berth if Jacksonville lost to Washington.

Nick Folk’s 34-yard field goal had trimmed the Bears’ lead to 38-34 with
14:52 remaining in the game. Robbie Gould then was wide right on a
35-yard attempt that would have extended the Bears’ lead with 11:26
left. It was the first miss by Gould inside 40 yards after 64
consecutive successful kicks.

Cutler’s third TD pass of the third
quarter and second to Johnny Knox, this one for 26 yards, had put the
Bears back on top 38-31 entering the final period.

The Bears were trying to gain the No. 2 seed in the NFC in order to
enjoy a first-round bye. They entered the game with the same record
as the NFC East-leading Eagles (10-4), but own the tiebreaker by virtue
of a Week 12 win at Soldier Field. Meanwhile, the Eagles-Vikings game
scheduled for Sunday was postponed until Tuesday night because of a snow
emergency in Philadelphia.

The Bears took a 3-0 lead with 9:40 left in the first period on a 37-yard field goal by Gould. The kick was partially blocked by Bryan Thomas, yet still had enough on it to clear the crossbar.

The Bears forced a Jets fumble midway through the second period. Santonio Holmes was hit by Tim Jennings and Chris Harris recovered at the Jets’ 45. Matt Forte made the Jets pay for the turnover, running 22 yards for a touchdown with 4:54 left in the opening quarter. Gould tacked on the PAT for a 10-0 lead.

The Jets mounted an impressive drive on their next possession. Shonn Greene burst into the end zone from three yards out to cap an eight-play, 80-yard drive. Folk converted to pull the Jets within 10-7 with 14:56 left in the second quarter.

Cutler attempted a pass to Earl Bennett that was intercepted by Jets cornerback Dwight Lowery and returned 20 yards for an easy touchdown with 13:52 left in the second quarter. Suddenly, the Jets were ahead 14-10.

The Jets shredded the Bears’ defense again on their next possession. LaDainian Tomlinson ran in from three yards out at the end of a six-play, 36-yard drive. The Jets led 21-10 at 5:44 of the second quarter.

The Bears finally got back into a nice rhythm offensively on their next possession. Cutler ran into the end zone from two yards out with 2:44 left until halftime and the Bears cut the Jets’ lead to 21-17. The drive covered 64 yards in 7 plays.

The Jets tacked on a 26-yard field goal from Folk with 12 seconds remaining until halftime to take a 24-17 lead.

Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez completed 13 of 15 first-half passes for 156 yards and a 110.00
passer rating. Cutler connected on 7 of 14 for 98 yards with one
interception. His passer rating was 43.2 at intermission.

The Jets had 224 total yards by halftime; the Bears had 141.

In a bizarre move early in the second half, Jets coach Rex Ryan opted to fake a punt near midfield. The short snap went directly to Sanchez, whose pass attempt to Brad Smith fell incomplete on fourth down.

The Bears took over at the Jets’ 40. Cutler promptly connected with Knox on a touchdown pass. Gould’s kick tied the game 24-24.

The Bears regained the lead with 10:29 to go in the third period when Cutler hit Devin Hester with a 25-yard touchdown pass. Hester set up the score with a 38-yard punt return to the Jets’ 32. The Bears led 31-24.

The Jets came right back to tie the game 31-31. Sanchez found a wide-open Holmes for a 23-yard TD. This drive covered 66 yards in four plays.

Cutler and Knox hooked up again on a TD route with 6:06 left in the third period. This connection went for 26 yards and the Bears went ahead 38-31.

After a 12-play drive, the Jets got a 34-yard field goal from Folk at 14:52 of the fourth period to make trim the Bears’ lead to 38-34.

Gould missed a 35-yard field goal attempt wide right with 11:26 left in the fourth period. It
was the first field goal missed by Gould inside 40 yards after 64
consecutive kicks made.

Linebacker Pisa Tinoisamoa was active was to see his first game action since undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his right knee Dec. 3.

Nick Roach started at strong-side linebacker, but Tinoisamoa saw time in the rotation. He was listed as probable going into the game. He was expected to play last Monday night against the Vikings, but sat out after pushing himself too hard in practice.

Also inactive for the Bears were Craig Steltz, Joshua Moore, Kahlil Bell, Desmond Clark, Herman Johnson, Edwin Williams, and Marcus Harrison. Caleb Hanie was the third quarterback.

For the Jets, starting safety Eric Smith was inactive with a concussion. Lowery started in his place. Also inactive for the Jets was former Bears defensive tackle Jarron Gilbert.

By Fred Mitchell and Vaughn McClure