MAY 18, DAMASCUS— Friday's game ended the same way Blair's game against Gaithersburg did. The Blair faithful was standing and clapping, honoring the softball team and their performance. The only difference was that this time there were tears of sadness streaming down the softball team's faces.
On Wednesday's senior night, the Blair Blazers played passionate defense, clinical offense, and used veteran leadership to beat one of the lower-ranked teams in the county.
FEB. 5, NELSON H. KOBREN GYMNASIUM- On Jan. 12, the Blazers defeated the Walter Johnson Wildcats by a score of 65-41. It has been three weeks, six losses and countless frustrations since the Blair boys' basketball team last salvaged a win. It was the same old story Monday night for the Blazers (3-15) against the Magruder Colonels (14-4) as the problems that have plagued them all year were present in yet another loss.
The NFL's Final Four is set, and the smell of the Super Bowl is in the air. Will it be the Pats, Colts, Bears or Saints, time will only tell. But before we get to the Big One in Miami, today's games will be fought. So as you enjoy the day's snow flurries, be sure to holla at the TV, too, because some great NFL action is goin' down. Here are our picks:
This year's NFL divisional playoffs are loaded with questions. Can Manning win on the road? Will the Pats stun the Chargers? Can the Saints keep hope alive? Can Rex Grossman not throw an interception? SCO's team of NFL experts does its best to answer those questions and more. Read on...
When we started NFL picks this season, Pia was the underdog. Now, the rest of us are fighting to get out of last. From the three (lovable?) losers, Abe, Josh and Phil, this is our last set of picks from the past two years. And we finished where we started—the bottom of the barrel. Peace out NFL predictions, it's been real. Happy New Year!
Happy Holidays! Overall
After evening their record at 1-1, the boys' basketball team has dropped two straight games, the latest to the Springbrook Blue Devils (5-0), who outlasted the Blazers (1-3) on Tuesday to come away with a 53-45 win. Sloppy play on both ends of the court plagued the Blazers, as they struggled to put together back-to-back defensive stops and successful offensive possessions.
Last week, we had the pleasure of picking alongside Mike Wilbon, and in the process we proved our mighty pick 'em smarts, as only Josh couldn't top the new guy. As usual, Pia continued to fry the rest of us, as Abe closed the gap with Phil and Josh. As for week fifteen, there's some good games, some ugly games and of course the Redskins game in New Orleans. Think Drew Brees is licking his chops?
Last Tuesday, the SCO sports staff had the honor and privilege of meeting one of the best local and national sportswriters we know, and a guy that we look up to: Michael Wilbon. This week, he found the time to send us his picks for this week. Read on as our SCO staff take on the legendary Wilbon.
Thursday night games premiere this week on NFL Network, which means either more excitement or more frustration for football fans, and earlier deadlines for us. But either way you slice it, it's football.
Happy Thanksgiving to all of our loyal readers out there, and be sure to plop down in front of the tube for some post-stuffing NFL football.
As we reviewed the standings this week, we noticed that there was a discrepancy in the number of games we had each picked. Somehow, Pia had two less games than the rest of us. Josh suggested giving her two losses, hoping to even the field. Phil said we should hand her one win and one loss, keeping her totals even. Wondering what to do and where we had gone wrong, we poured over the last ten weeks of predictions, hoping to find a clue as to where we had done some bad math. As fate would have it, we found the mistake. So what did we find? We omitted two of Pia's correct predictions. Her two more wins plus another week of superiority mean she's pulling away fast, as the rest of us are left stunned and embarrassed. As for this week…
The SCO sports staff is currently Ballin'!!, and with a full docket of games on the schedule, all our senior experts will be looking to close the gap between their records and Pia's. Too bad she never has a bad week.
Forget the records, the injuries, the controversies and anything else you've heard this week. Dallas vs. Washington is all that matters…
It's the beginning of the end for Pia. I see it now. Last week was just the beginning as she lost ground. Amazingly, Phil was the best last week, even though as a group we unanimously picked six games wrong. There are a couple of real tough games this week, including Denver versus Indy in a matchup with playoff implications. Abe makes his return to the picks and looks to gain ground from his last-place standing, which is highly unlikely. Check it out for yourself"
Another week in the NFL, and another probable Redskins loss. I hate to say it Skins fans, but this week looks bleak. With a loss here, we could be looking at a quarterback switch. As you can see, last week was a stalemate as we all picked horribly. Pia maintains her lead of four games, while Abe, the most egotistical of us all, retains sole possession of last place, a whopping nine games out. R.I.P. Abe's comments. Check out what the rest of us experts have to say this week…
For Redskins fans, this week is big. Real big. The difference between 3-2 and 2-3 could mean the difference between playoff contention and a season destined for Jason Campbell's development. Plus, the 'Skins travel to New York to face the Giants, who you may recall have a certain flashy linebacker by the name of Arrington who would love to lay out some Washington players. As for the rest of the NFL, the Bears may have established themselves as the league's top team and T.O. returns to Philadelphia. So pour yourself a cold drink, grab the chips and dip and plop down for a Sunday of zoning out on football.
Mark Brunell will face his old team Jacksonville this week when the Jags invade FedEx Field for a big matchup with the Redskins, Seattle and Chicago square off Sunday night for the right to be called #1 in the NFC and the Chargers face the Ravens for a defensive battle that will leave one team undefeated and the other with an L on their record. In short, this Sunday's slew of NFL games is a big one. It's time for teams to separate from the pack, and as for our standings so far, well, Pia has done most of the separating. She still hasn't gone over the 10-loss mark yet…jeez, Josh, Phil and I need to step our game up.
Strange things are afoot in the NFL. From an OT comeback to an embarrassment in Dallas to the lowest-scoring Monday Night Football game in history, football has gotten weird again, and we wouldn't have it any other way. And as for our panel of so-called "experts," Pia still leads the way, proving once again that excluding Phil, everyone with a name that starts with the letter "P" is extremely smart (as in "Pratik").
Okay, so the Redskins dropped a tough game to the Vikings on Monday night. Boo-hoo. Buck up and get ready for week two, the weekend that solidifies our opinions on teams that looked great or terrible in week one. More importantly, if you're still looking to win that friendly wager with a buddy or you just want to check out how bad our crew of "experts" is doing this week, we've got you covered. And by the way, don't sleep on Pia, the leader out of the gates.
Are you ready for some football? SCO definitely is. With Pratik gone to who-knows-which-super-smart-college, we bring back two experts in Abe Schwadron and myself, Josh Zipin to analyze all the games on Sundays. I take pride in introducing to you our newest recruit, Pia Nargundkar"don't hate, she knows her stuff. We also bring back one lesser talent in the form of Phillip Allen (sorry, Phil). This season we will do our best to predict the Redskins all the way to the Super Bowl, and along the way hopefully win some bragging rights. I sit on the throne as last season's pick 'em champion, and I'll be there until one of these so-called "experts" knocks me off. Here are our passionate picks for the first week of NFL games.
On Friday, the United States Men's soccer team will make its seventh appearance in the World Cup in 70 years. Riding the wave of last World Cup's success, in which the United States outplayed a heavily favored Portuguese team, defeated their continental rivals Mexico in the second round and finally succumbed to the Germans in the quarterfinals, the US hopes to capitalize on a productive off-season and continue their World Cup run. As fate would have it, the United States was drawn into group E, one of the more competitive groupings in the tournament. Comprised of three-time champions Italy, a Czech team ranked second in the world and the dangerous Ghanaian national team, Group E will offer plenty of problems for the US squad.
The NBA is officially in uncharted territory. Neither the Dallas Mavericks nor the Miami Heat have ever made it to the NBA Finals in their franchise histories. With Shaq now as a backseat driver to the Heat's Championship bus, Miami looks to its young phenom, Dwyane Wade (a.k.a. "Flash") to propel the team to their first title. On the other side of the court lies Dirk Nowitzki, a reformed player who now attacks the basket instead of hoisting European-style jump shots. With rookie teams in the finals, but NBA veterans facing off on the biggeset stage of them all, SCO breaks down what should be a hard-fought series.
Summer has been notorious for the mass release of movie bombs (remember Charlie's Angels 2 and The Mummy Returns?), but also a few hits (Finding Nemo and Spiderman). With a variety of different types of movies, from comic book adaptations to computer animation features, summer is the perfect time to sit back and watch some of the better vacation flicks.
America's Pastime is back. With the first month of April out of the way, things are starting to get interesting in the baseball world. In the first month of the 2006 season, Barry Bonds had a syringe thrown at him, Chris Shelton and Jonathan Papelbon arose out of anonymity to become household names and Albert Pujols dominated (again). With the month of May still in its early stages, Silver Chips Online breaks down a couple of the most intriguing plot lines developing around the league.
The NFL Draft. Some call it a crapshoot. Others call it a science. However you look at it, the draft signifies the official return of football season. While you can likely pencil in Reggie Bush as the number one pick, the remainder of the first round is as unpredictable as Chad Johnson's new touchdown dances. So in honor of the re-entering of the glorious game of football into the lives of sports fans once again, SCO's primary sports experts channel Mel Kiper, Jr. to predict and break down the NFL Draft. Read on…
The playoffs are once again upon us, the culmination of six months of games, controversies, trades and record-breaking feats. This year's ensemble of playoff teams includes some familiar faces as well as some names that we haven't seen in a while (Clippers? Bucks?). Expect exciting play from the league's best players, a few surprises and plenty of highlights.
In a year with an unusually large amount of upsets, and the Cinderella of all Cinderella's in George Mason, the SCO sports experts give you team-by-team breakdowns and does its best to predict (very humbly) the future.
Although less popular than they once were, throwback jerseys remain a staple of popular culture. More than just a fashion statement, a retro jersey represents respect for an athlete and respect for greatness. The famed company Mitchell and Ness produced their first throwbacks by hand, but the jerseys were popularized by rap artists such as Outkast and Fabolous. But not all throwbacks are equal. Some catch the eye with their uniqueness or rarity. With this in mind, Silver Chips Online offers a few friendly suggestions for throwbacks to our friends at Mitchell and Ness.
A basketball shoe is more than stitched cloth, rubber and paint. Not only does a sneaker have a sole; a sneaker has a soul. The feel, the design and the vibe emanating from a shoe can inspire players to do their best on the court. Players' shoes can speak volumes about their game, their personality and their mood. To the sneakerhead or the avid shoe-wearer, a person's footwear gives insight into their life. Any retro design can be worn to school, but not every shoe deserves to grace the hardwood. So with the basketball shoe industry adding more and more features to the latest styles of baller-approved sneakers, we present a synopsis of the basketball kicks that we'd like to see make a return to the court.
Basketball fans will focus their attention on Houston during the All-Star Break is not just because some of the best players in all of the NBA will appear in the featured game. Yes, technically the NBA stops to focus on showcasing its best players and hype the All-Star Game nearly to death, but the real showcase takes place the night before the game during the skills competitions. Last year's competitions produced quite a few memorable moments. So in honor of dunkers, shooters and dribblers of past, present and future, SCO offers a guide to the most exciting part of the NBA weekend — All-Star Saturday night.
The Olympics are a unique world event that brings all nations together. Even if no one can decide whether or not the games are in Turin or Torino, one thing is for sure: the Winter Olympics are for real. The U.S. team has had its ups and downs in the Games so far. Some highly touted athletes have faded and some unknowns have risen to the top. Silver Chips Online offers an update on the winners and losers from all around the world to help you catch up on what is happening over there in Italy.
In light of the recent turmoil stirred up by Ron Artest about his trade to the Sacramento Kings along with athletes like Bode Miller and his Olympic antics, Silver Chips Online takes this opportunity to explore the professional athletes no one wants in their locker room.
The Grammy Awards are more than just hardware. The Music Industry's Oscars aren't about taking home the mini record player trophies. The Grammys are about respect. Artists put their hearts and souls into their works and this is when they get recognized for it. On a night when every major musical artists holds their breath hoping to hear their name, SCO offers its very own guide to the 48th annual Grammy Awards, complete with nominations for selected categories and our predictions.
The Notorious B.I.G., also known as Christopher Wallace, gives a glimpse of what could have been in "Duets: The Final Chapter." The album is the only therapy left for Biggie fans who have already memorized all his songs.
The wild card round is here and the hometown Washington Redskins are finally back into the playoffs. With intruiging matchups including former Super Bowl champions and rabid fans, Silver Chips Online and their crack team of football experts breaks it all down...
With the Washington Redskins in the NFL Playoffs for the first time since 1999, local football fans have something to celebrate. To those casual fans who like to share the excitement and learn the game, this means a weekend of social stimulation. But to those supporters who take their fandom seriously, Saturday's matchup with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers means ecstasy or depression, love or hate, life or death. All this banter begs the question, what kind of Redskins fan are you? This short quiz will determine exactly where you lie on the spectrum on Washington football fanatics.
Happy New Year!
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays...
It's the Super Bowl of NCAA Football. It's a college pigskin fan's favorite time of year. It's a time for chips, dip and a comfy chair. It's Bowl season, baby!
As the clock ticked down on their second win of the season, Blair JV boys basketball coach Emanuel Charles looked pleased. His team played hard and was deserving of a win.
Dallas vs. Washington. Nothing else matters.
To participate in Montgomery County high school athletics, students must maintain a 2.0 grade point average. For some student-athletes this isn't a problem, but for others the academic requirements are a formidable hurdle. Some people argue that academics should not play a role in determining who gets to play sports and that the best athletes in a school should represent it in athletic competition, but others believe that school takes precedence. Students, parents and administrators all have an opinion on this contested topic. So the question is, are these academic restrictions justified?
Sleigh bells ring, are you listening, in the lane, snow is glistening, a beautiful sight, we're happy tonight, walking in a winter wonderland...Happy Snow Day! On an unrelated note, we make all of our picks without consulting one other so that we uphold the highest standards of integrity (and also so that we can brag about it when we have the best record), but amazingly, this week, Josh, Abe and I all picked exactly the same...how weird is that?
The Blazers opened their new season the same way they ended last years: with a loss and without their head coach.
15-1. That's all I'm going to say.
We're back up to 16 games this week so that's another six hours of football for all you fanatics out there. Seems like I'm the only one that gives Carolina a chance against Chicago. Well, I guess we'll see who's right huh? By the way, Reggie Bush had 513 all-purpose yards last night. That's more than most teams get in a game! Can anyone else say that he's making a huge case to be the number one pick in next year's draft?
Seniors Elizabeth Albert and Anuja Shah were both published in the Montgomery Extra section of The Washington Post yesterday for their reviews of Winston Churchill High School's performance of "West Side Story."
Most of us will never deal cocaine, shoot a gun or get shot at. Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson has done all of these things in director Jim Sheridan's "Get Rich or Die Tryin'," a loose biography of the rapper's life, that gives entertaining insight into the hustler lifestyle.
When the going gets tough, the tough get going. Supposedly. Well, now that we've passed the halfway point of the season, it's definitely time for the teams that are serious about the playoffs to take their game to the next level. Which of these teams will be able to go on a run and set themselves up for the playoffs? Dear God, let's hope it's the 'Skins...
Midway through the 2005 NFL season, the Minnesota Vikings have been the center of a sex scandal, the Indianapolis Colts remain undefeated, and the NFC East is perhaps the strongest division in football. So with our coverage of the NFL sitting on the 50-yard line, we present our midseason power rankings, awards, biggest stories and second-half predictions for an historic year in football.
Well, nine weeks into the NFL season, we finally have some inkling of how good any given team is. Also, Josh finally overtook Abe atop the picks lead while I'm still fending off Phil by a hair. Anyway, this is where the real pros step it up and the pretenders fall by the wayside. Who's got what it takes to get into the playoffs? More important, who's going to win the picks?
Washington is not usually considered a hockey town, but one rookie phenom could bring back plenty of fans. He hasn't been labeled "the Next One" or called the future of the National Hockey League (NHL), but Alexander Ovechkin entered the NHL as the number one overall pick two years ago and with high expectations. One of this season's most intriguing subplots will be the battle between Ovechkin and his fellow rookie, 18-year old Sidney Crosby for the Calder Trophy as the NHL's Rookie of the Year.
Amazing...Phil "forgot" to do his picks and Josh "forgot" to do the Monday Night pick. Amazingly, Abe remembered how to do his picks and actually sent in all the games. I should give him a raise. Let me see, 10% of nothing is...uh...carry the 0...oh yeah, nothing so he gets nothing + nothing = nothing. All right, now that I've ridiculed my colleagues, on to the picks...
The bench-press bar pulses up and down as the beat of Missy Elliot's "Lose Control" blares throughout Junior Eli Simon-Mishel's cramped basement. As the bar bounces, his breath becomes short and sharp. His face contorts into a look of anguish, his puffed up cheeks showing the intense stress on his body. "Twenty!" he exults as he clangs the bar back into place above his now still frame. Simon-Mishel reaches to his side and, with shaking hands, ladles two scoops of powder from a giant gray tub, stirs them into a cup of water and then downs the pink mixture in one swig.
Because of inclement weather and the current forecast, the SGA and Principal Phillip Gainous have moved Friday's pep rally, the first of the year, from the stadium to the gym, according to SGA President Barun Aryal.
Nothing clever or inspirational this time but hey, I'm not in last place anymore. On to the picks...
The 2005 World Series is set, and this fall baseball will award its championship trophy to either the American League's Chicago White Sox or the National League's Houston Astros. The superb starting pitching of the White Sox propelled them past the Angels in five games, while the clutch hitting of young superstars and seasoned veterans helped the Astros shake off the defending NL champion Cardinals in six. So as the 102nd World Series gets underway on Saturday, we give you our thoughts on the matchup.
Green Street Hooligans
To win the Heisman Trophy is to be immortalized among college football's greatest players. Last year, former Texas Longhorns running back Cedric Benson said he would even trade team success for winning the Heisman and joining the list of all-time greats. This fall, as the competition stiffens, a player's performance in one big game could make or break his chances to follow in the footsteps of such greats as Paul Hornung, Roger Staubach, Herschel Walker, Barry Sanders, Desmond Howard and Ricky Williams. The chase looks to be one for the ages as there are five extremely qualified candidates all hoping to come away with college football's version of the Miss America crown: everyone struts their stuff and at the end, the best of the best is awarded the coveted trophy. Here is how the race stands midway through the season.
Four. Yes, four. That's how many picks out of 14 I got right. Thank god SCO doesn't pay me anything because if they did, I would be fired. What a weird league. Who would've figured that Detroit, Cleveland, Buffalo, Green Bay, New York Jets, Jacksonville and Pittsburgh would win? Ay caramba…
There are four unbeaten teams left in week five: Indianapolis, Cincinnati, Tampa Bay and Washington. Of the four, the two that most people aren't sold on yet are Washington and Cincinnati. Both of these teams face good tests this week against Denver for the 'Skins and against Jacksonville for the Bengals. And I'm in last place. Again. This will end, I promise...
With steroid scandals, violence on and off the field and embarrassing play (sorry, Royals fans), the 2005 Major League Baseball season could have been marred by bad publicity and mediocrity. But the most compelling storyline of the year turned out to be the great division and wild-card races, which came down to the wire in both the American and National Leagues. The teams who did get in are ready to rumble, and we can't wait to see what happens. In honor of the start of baseball's fall classic, we broke down each series by starting pitching, bullpen and hitting and added a final word about our favorites.
So, amazingly, we all (even Phil) did better this week. I know, I know, I'm in last place. But I needed to give the young 'uns a bit of confidence before I demolish them, right? Besides, if I really needed to, I could change all of their picks at the last minute. But I wouldn't do that or so I say...
A 15-year old girl died after being stabbed during a fight between two groups of girls in the parking lot following the end of the football game last Friday, Sept. 23, at James Hubert Blake High School, according to an article in The Washington Post.
Okay, so I had the worst week; I'm still beating Phil. But seriously, can anyone make sense out of the first two weeks? I mean, the Giants and the Bucs are 2-0 whereas San Diego and Baltimore are 0-2. Oh well, I can't complain. The Redskins won, remember?
This year is a rebuilding year—literally. The National Hockey League (NHL) is building piece by piece to form a profitable enterprise. Nearly a year ago, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and the owners halted the 2004-2005 season before it began by locking the players out. The NHL was losing money under their current collective bargaining agreement, and the owners were paying too much money to the players to make a profit. Bettman locked the NHL's doors and for months the NHL Players' Association and the owners negotiated. Unfortunately, when the two sides finally reached an agreement, it was too late to save the season. But the NHL has returned and this year it will have to prove to their disenchanted fans that hockey is back and worth watching. Not much is certain regarding what this season will bring for the NHL, but it is shaping up to be another rebuilding year from a financial perspective. However, the NHL has taken steps to reclaim its fan base with new rule changes and what promises to be a faster-paced game.
If the first game is any indication, the Patriots look hungry for what would be a record third straight Super Bowl. On Thursday, September 8, the Patriots began the NFL season with a resounding 30-20 win over the Oakland Raiders at Gillette Stadium in Boston. Other than simply putting the Patriots in the win column, this game sent a message to the rest of the league: the Patriots are still the team to beat.
"I'm trying to right my wrongs/ But it's funny the same wrongs help me write this song," Kanye West raps on his new album "Late Registration." West is by no means a typical rapper, most notably he never grew up in a rough neighborhood. Instead of the traditional thug who raps of his past, West doesn't hide his middle-class upbringing and consequently produces a different kind of sound. In the case of "Late Registration," different is most certainly a positive.
Robert F. Kennedy stadium in Northeast Washington, D.C., sits alone by the banks of the Potomac River. It is almost in seclusion — like a secret kept only for those who care about D.C. baseball.