Optional Musical Accompaniment
Well, Vanderbilt basketball saw a Friday night game heading into finals week and sleepwalked their way to a 64-62 loss to Grambling. So this team is now 5-5 on the season with losses to Southern Miss and Grambling and dropped to 97th in KenPom with the loss. KenPom’s numbers now project a record of 12-19, 5-13 in the SEC. I’m really glad we signed this coach to a contract extension a couple of months ago.
It doesn’t suck nearly as much as this sucks, though:
Grant Wahl, a highly regarded soccer journalist who wrote extensively on the game, died Friday in Qatar, where he was covering the World Cup quarterfinal match between Argentina and the Netherlands.
It’s probably just a coincidence that the one Western journalist who was both on the ground in Qatar and decided to write stuff like this instead of just kissing the ass of the Qatari government died under mysterious circumstances, but what the hell do I know.
We know the Qatari Supreme Committee doesn’t care because its CEO, Nasser Al-Khater, told you all you needed to hear in an interview with the BBC that was breathtaking in its crassness.
“We’re in the middle of a World Cup, and we have a successful World Cup. And this is something that you want to talk about right now?” Al-Khater said when asked about the worker’s death. “I mean, death is a natural part of life, whether it’s at work, whether it’s in your sleep. Of course, a worker died. Our condolences go to his family. However, it’s strange that this is something that you wanted to focus on as your first question.”
The soccer has been great. This World Cup has still been a complete and utter embarrassment that FIFA would be ashamed of, if it were capable of shame. But even more embarrassing has been the great deal of media ass-kissing that has treated the 2022 World Cup with the same kid gloves that it treats LIV Golf and the various forays that despotic Middle Eastern governments have made into the world of European soccer. It’s all a toxic influence on sports that thankfully has mostly left American sports alone (with the notable exception of golf) that few will talk about, instead deploying the same journalistic standards that lead to college football media members who should know better (and, well, a lot who frankly don’t) sanitizing Hugh Freeze’s reputation.
That’s where Sticking To Sports gets us.
(Meantime, in other things soccer doesn’t want you to talk about, NPR on what a scam youth club soccer is.)
Back to Vanderbilt news, fifth-year defensive lineman Elijah McAllister is going to use his COVID year elsewhere.
Commodore Nation THANK YOU. Not the ending I expected but you will always have my LOVE & GRATITUDE ❤️— Elijah McAllister (@e_mcallister1) December 9, 2022
I will be entering the portal for my final year of eligibility. pic.twitter.com/HF3T7z6BWz
That’s fine. Elijah McAllister gave us five years, even if he was only healthy for three of those.
Then, Vanderbilt scored a commitment from Round Rock (TX) DB Jalen Gilbert on Friday night:
110%…Committed⚫️— Jalen Gilbert (@Jalen_Gilbert4) December 10, 2022
⚓️ #AnchorDown @VandyFootball pic.twitter.com/8KtdIzjdzY
Bad Gambling Advice
Season to date: 43-54-2 ATS, 45-54 totals
- Yale at Kentucky (12:00 PM CT, SEC Network): Yale +16, Under 139
- Oklahoma vs. Arkansas (12:00 PM CT, ESPN2): Oklahoma +4, Under 134.5
- LSU vs. Wake Forest (1:00 PM CT, ESPNU): Wake Forest -1, Over 142.5
- Alabama at Houston (2:00 PM CT, ABC): Alabama +8, Over 136.5
- Valparaiso at Ole Miss (2:00 PM CT, SEC Network): Valparaiso +16, Over 128.5
- Auburn vs. Memphis (4:00 PM CT, ESPN2): Memphis +1.5, Under 137.5
- Kansas at Missouri (4:15 PM CT, ESPN): Kansas -3.5, Over 154.5
Sports on TV
All times Central. College basketball schedule here.
- 9:00 AM: World Cup: Morocco v. Portugal (FOX)
- 11:00 AM: FCS Playoffs: Holy Cross at South Dakota State (ESPN)
- 11:00 AM: Division II Playoffs: West Florida at Ferris State (ESPN+)
- 11:00 AM: Division III Playoffs: Wartburg at Mount Union (ESPN+)
- 1:00 PM: World Cup: England v. France (FOX)
- 1:00 PM: NHL: Red Wings at Stars (NHL Network)
- 2:00 PM: NCAAF: Army vs. Navy (CBS)
- 2:30 PM: Division II Playoffs: Shepherd at Colorado School of Mines (ESPN+)
- 2:30 PM: Division III Playoffs: Mary Hardin-Baylor at North Central (ESPN+)
- 6:00 PM: NHL: Kings at Canadiens (NHL Network)
- 7:30 PM: NBA: Celtics at Warriors (ABC)
SEC Women’s Basketball: Missouri 83, Omaha 36.
World Cup: Croatia 1-1 Brazil (Croatia advance on penalties) ... Netherlands 2-2 Argentina (Argentina advance on penalties.)
NBA: Knicks 121, Hornets 102 ... Pacers 121, Wizards 111 ... Magic 113, Raptors 109 ... Nets 120, Hawks 116 ... Kings 106, Cavaliers 95 ... 76ers 133, Lakers 122 ... Grizzlies 114, Pistons 103 ... Pelicans 128, Suns 117 ... Timberwolves 118, Jazz 108 ... Bucks 106, Mavericks 105.
NHL: Penguins 4, Sabres 3 ... Blue Jackets 3, Flames 1 ... Islanders 6, Devils 4 ... Capitals 4, Kraken 1 ... Jets 3, Blackhawks 1 ... Rangers 2, Avalanche 1 ... Oilers 5, WIld 2 ... Coyotes 4, Bruins 3 ... Sharks 6, Ducks 1 ... Golden Knights 2, Flyers 1.