Friday, January 30, 2015

Super Bowl XLIX Preview Extravaganza

The battle for the middle of the field, between Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski and Seahawks strong safety Kam Chancellor, will go a long way toward determining the winner of Super Bowl XLIX.

By Jeremy Conlin (@jeremy_conlin) and Joe Parello (@HerewegoJoe), with cameos from Bob Lobel (@boblobel) and Andy Dougherty (@AndyDougherty10)

Last season, we blew out Super Bowl week with everything you needed to know about the Big Game in a different post each day. This year, however, a hellacious snowstorm dumped over two feet of snow in the greater Boston area, which meant Jeremy spent most of the week trapped under a pile of snow, and writing fell by the wayside to give way to playing cards and drinking whiskey with fellow snowed-in housemates, while Joe scrambled to finalize the purchase of a new home. It was really a banner week all around. So in lieu of dragging everything out, we've opted to just throw everything you need to know into one convenient (albeit obnoxiously long) post.

Our postseason gambling records continue to impress. Jeremy is 6-4 against the spread and a stellar 9-1 straight up while Joe is 7-3 against the spread and 7-3 straight up. With only one game left, Jeremy has clinched the straight-up title, and Joe has guaranteed himself at least a share of the ATS title. 

By The Numbers

Line: Patriots by 1

Record: 12-4 (10-6 vs. The Spread)
Average Score: 24.6 (10th) - 15.9 (1st)
Average Scoring Margin: +8.8 (2nd) - 11.8 "Expected" Wins
DVOA: +16.7% Offense (5th); -16.3% Defense (1st); -1.7% Special Teams (19th); +31.3% Total (1st)

New England:
Record: 12-4 (9-7 vs. The Spread)
Average Score: 29.2 (4th) - 19.6 (8th)
Avergae Scoring Margin: +9.7 (1st) - 11.5 "Expected" Wins
DVOA: +13.6% Offense (6th); -3.4% Defense (11th); +5.5% Special Teams (5th); +22.4% Total (4th)

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Massachusetts Football Recruit Profile: Joe Gaziano

 By Mike Uva (@mike_uva)

Ed. Note- We continue our month-long look at the top football recruits in Massachusetts with a profile of Northwestern bound defensive end Joe Gaziano. Mike Uva takes a look at ESPN Boston's 2014 Mr. Football from Division 1 state champion Xaverian.

Joe Gaziano

Defensive End
Xaverian Brothers High School
6'4'', 245 lbs.
College Choice: Northwestern
Senior Highlights

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Patriots and Seahawks Eye History in Super Bowl XLIX

By Joe Parello (@HerewegoJoe)

Fellow editor Jeremy Conlin and I will get to our in-depth preview of Sunday's big game a little later, but right now let's just focus on the fact that there is a ton of history to be made, by both teams, in Super Bowl XLIX.

The Patriots come in looking to win their fourth Super Bowl on a record-tying eighth appearance, and Tom Brady and Bill Belichick both have the chance to join very rare company in the respective fields of quarterbacking and coaching.

Meanwhile, Seattle's defense and young quarterback have the chance to carve out a unique place in pro football lore for themselves as well.

Here's what is on the line for both teams this Super Sunday, as well as a few nuggets that make the match up historic in itself.

New England Patriots

The Patriots will tie Pittsburgh and Dallas for the most Super Bowl appearances all time Sunday with eight. The Patriots can't catch the Steelers (6-2) or Cowboys (5-3) on the Super Bowl wins list, but a loss would give New England it's fifth Super Bowl defeat, tying them with the Denver Broncos for that backhanded-compliment of a record. New England is currently tied with Buffalo and Minnesota for second place on the all-time Super Bowl loss list with four.

Since Robert Kraft bought the Patriots in 1994, no team has been more successful. The Pats have appeared in seven Super Bowls since then (counting Sunday), winning three. The closest franchises in Super Bowl appearances since that time? Green Bay, Pittsburgh, the New York Giants and Denver are all tied with three appearances, and those same teams are all lagging behind in wins with two.

Bob Lobel: Belichick vs Carroll and the Super Bowl Media Circus

By Bob Lobel (@boblobel)

There have been hundreds of press conferences over the years.

From the Olympics in Sarajevo, to Lake Placid and being in the locker room a week before they became the Miracle on Ice. 


From the America's Cup in Newport, RI with the Australians, to the Curtis Strange US open and then the Ryder Cup at the Country Club in Brookline where Justin Leonard, wearing one of those horrible shirts/uniforms, rammed in a putt for the cup on 17.   

That only scratches the surface of places and memories… Only the surface! 

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Wrestling Fans Hit Vince McMahon Where It Hurts with #CancelWWENetwork

When fan favorite Daniel Bryan was unceremoniously dumped from the Royal Rumble, WWE fans everywhere revolted.
By Joe Parello (@HerewegoJoe)

Sunday night brought plenty of opportunities to watch pointless and, most likely, fixed competitions. But even with Miss Universe and the Pro Bowl on, the most significant predetermined event of the evening had to be the WWE's Royal Rumble.

For those unfamiliar, the Royal Rumble is a Pay-Per-View (PPV) that WWE puts on every January, serving as the beginning of the company's "Road to Wrestlemania." Basically, Wrestlemania is the biggest show of the year, and the Royal Rumble sets it up. The Rumble itself is a 30-man battle royal that main events the show, with the winner usually getting a world title shot at Wrestlemania.

It's a star-making show, with such legends as Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, Shawn Michaels and "Stone Cold" Steve Austin all getting major boosts from winning the Rumble.

Each year the company, effectively, names it's "next big thing" with the Rumble winner. This rising star usually goes on to win the title at Wrestlemania and enjoy a run of main event work.

But what happens when the majority of wrestling fans want one performer pushed, and the WWE goes in a completely different, but utterly predictable direction?