Taylor's Twins Talk

Focusing on the Twins, with a few ramblings on other things that catch my attention

Monday, September 10, 2007

Non-Baseball Stuff

There are a lot of general things (especially football related) that I just wanted to comment on briefly, so I'm putting them in this Non-Baseball Stuff post.

1.) Commercials are a form of art, and as with all art forms, there are good, bad, and adequate if uninspiring examples out there. Perhaps my favorite commercial in quite some time is the new Nike "Leave Nothing" commercial. If you watched any NFL football this weekend, you undoubtedly saw this ad -- it features the main theme from Last of the Mohicans, if that sparks your memory. What's so great about it? It's simple and well executed. The music is epic, the production values are immaculate, and you don't have to listen to jingles or slogans. I don't know whether the ad is effective or not (frankly, I have no idea what makes people actually pay attention to an ad), but I'll be watching for this one every week -- even if I don't rush out and buy a new pair of Nike's. To see the ad, click here and then click on the "See More Action" link in the bottom left of the screen.

2.) Terrible news out of Buffalo today regarding Kevin Everett, the tight end whose spine was severely damaged in yesterday's Broncos/Bills tilt, and whose very life now hangs in the balance. Living in Denver, this was the early game I was watching this weekend, and it was sickening to see. Even high-speed racing crashes don't have the eerie effect on me that watching a football player lying motionless on the field. Hopefully things look worse now than they actually are.

3.) How about the Big East? The conference as a whole has a record of 14-2, with the two losses both belonging to woeful Syracuse. I did my undergrad work at the University of Pittsburgh, so I'm somewhat invested in the success of the conference -- and so far things look promising. If only Pitt were in the top half of that conference . . .

4.) For a very long time, racing in the United States (excluding drag racing) has been split into relatively clear open-wheel vs. stock car classes. NASCAR is, of course, the primary stock car series in the world, while the open-wheel scene in the US has been split between the Indy Racing League and the Champ Car World Series. It appears that open-wheel racing in the US is undergoing a bit of a transformation, however, becoming essentially a top-flight feeder league for NASCAR (and to a much lesser extent, to Formula One -- the dominant form of racing everywhere outside of the United States). Former F1 and CART (the precursor to both the IRL and Champ Car) champion Juan Pablo Montoya came over in time for the 2007 season, and now it looks as if just-crowned IRL champion Dario Franchitti and fellow IRL driver and former champion Sam Hornish, Jr. will be heading to NASCAR full-time next season as well. They'll be joined by another former F1 champion, Jacques Villeneuve, as well as open-wheeler Patrick Carpentier, and possibly former F1 driver Scott Speed. The drivers are following the money, but this is a remarkable development in racing -- and shows just how far NASCAR has come over the past few years.

5.) Mike Tirico, Ron Jaworski, and Tony Kornheiser seem a bit better as the hosts of Monday Night Football tonight than I remember them being last year. I'm very curious to see how Mike Greenberg and Mike Golic (along with Mike Ditka, for good measure) handle the late game tonight -- I love listening to Mike & Mike in the Morning on my way in to school/work in the morning.

6.) Will the Gophers even win 4 games this year? I'm actually pushing -- exactly four wins seems to be the right guess. Overtime two straight weeks against MAC teams? Pathetic.

7.) Congrats to the Vikings -- can't wait to see them next week against the Lions.

8.) How incredible is the Colts/Patriots matchup on November 4 going to be? I already can't wait to see how that one pans out.



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