The Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs, Triple-A affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies, have taken bacon to a whole new level of awesome. Unveiling uniforms for the upcoming season, the team decided to have some fun and introduce Saturday home jerseys that pay homage to one of the most heralded foods on the planet (not applicable to vegetarians and vegans, however): Bacon.
Twitter and Facebook provided insights into the most talked about moments on social media platforms from the past couple of weeks at the Winter Olympics in Sochi, analyzing a wealth of data that most likely consisted of people either cheering on their nations proudly or lamenting what could have been for medal hopefuls.
(and yes, the featured image for this blog post is from Team Canada’s victory from the men’s ice hockey tournament – Go Canada Go!)
Hockey Reigns Supreme
To no one’s surprise, the crown jewel of the Winter Olympics once again was ice hockey, reported by both Facebook and Twitter as being the most talked about sport throughout the Winter Games. The men’s tournament garners a significant amount of interest every four years due to the rarity of a true “best vs. best” competition in international hockey (and no, the World Championships do not count – many players decline invites due to injuries, fatigue, or mainly because they are still playing in the NHL playoffs!). The women’s tournament also generated a lot of social media chatter, particularly on Twitter, as the Canadian national team stunned the United States in a gold medal game that will be remembered for a very long time. In fact, four of the top five most talked about events were related to ice hockey, with Japan’s Yuzuru Hanyu’s victory in men’s figure skating rounding out the top five .
Yours truly is an avid sports fan and when the Olympics roll around, it’s hard not to watch any event involving Canadians. Curling and especially Hockey always have me glued to the screen, which is why today’s victories by both national teams was….epic.
Now let’s hope the Men’s teams can capture gold as well.
This past weekend, the NBA All-Star game (or #NBAAllStar game in the Twitterverse) hosted in New Orleans generated a significant amount of social media activity on Twitter, with viewers around the world creating over 2.5 million Tweets throughout the telecast. Twitter dug deep into the statistics to analyze which moments and players dominated Twitter feeds, identifying three particular events that created a significant buzz: Continue reading
Chaos reigned supreme this weekend in the landscape of college football. Not only did Big Ten favourite Nebraska get demolished by an average Wisconsin team, the Northern Illinois Huskies crashed the BCS party by finishing 15th in the final BCS standings, punching their ticket to the Orange Bowl. Despite the unabated criticism emanating from ESPN’s studios, the Huskies have accomplished something truly magnificent in this day and age. Despite residing in the MAC, a conference that is largely forgotten this time of year, they made a strong push towards the end of the season, and have now become the only mid-major program to make a BCS bowl without going undefeated.
Most college football pundits will mock the Huskies and lament the fact that we rely on computers too much to choose which teams receive BCS bids, but the media played a significant role in boosting NIU’s stock by ranking them 16th in the USA Today poll. Some may say that the system is broken, but are the Huskies any worse than an 8-5 Big Ten team? A 10-2 Big East champion that lost to Syracuse and Connecticut? Even the ACC has a champion that lost to NC State and barely survived a 6-6 Georgia Tech in the conference title game.
All in all, this was quite a mediocre season of college football. Even the heralded SEC teams had some embarrassing moments, including LSU’s inept offense causing two defeats and Georgia’s inexplicable loss to South Carolina. Oregon once again failed to grasp the #1 position by losing to Stanford in OT, and Kansas State turned out their worst performance of the season against a mediocre Baylor squad. This seems to be a fitting end to a season mired in controversy, conference realignment, and numerous bowl bans, whether self-imposed or handed down by the NCAA offices.
That said, here is how the final BCS bowls will shape up, and the BCS championship match between Alabama and Notre Dame will be one heck of a slobber-knocker.
Rose Bowl Game presented by Vizio
Wisconsin vs. Stanford
Northern Illinois vs. Florida State
Louisville vs. Florida
Oregon vs. Kansas State
Discover BCS National Championship
Notre Dame vs. Alabama
Image Credit: Fox Sports
Maryland and Rutgers moving to the Big 10 were the first dominoes to fall in what is becoming a media circus in the college football landscape. A quick overview of the changes can be found below:
- Eastern Carolina, Tulane set to join the Big East in 2014.
- Louisville accepts an invitation to replace Maryland in the ACC in 2014.
- Middle Tennessee, Florida Atlantic leave the Sun Belt behind for Conference-USA.
After the regular season came to an end this past weekend, many college football fans began making their predictions for the BCS bowl season. The BCS championship will most likely feature Notre Dame and the winner of the SEC championship match between Alabama and Georgia. Additionally, a Kansas State victory over Texas this upcoming weekend should cement a Fiesta Bowl big against Oregon, and the Rose Bowl will feature the winners of the Nebraska/Wisconsin and Stanford/UCLA games. However, the Sugar and Orange bowl games become more complicated because of one mid-major conference: the MAC.
Despite living in the Great White North, I have grown fond of American college football over the years and have become a zealous follower. While this season has become quite disastrous for my favourite program, West Virginia, this weekend’s slate of games can even make the students of Idaho excited about the annual college football Thanksgiving weekend. Some of the key games include:
After the Big 12 secured their latest TV deal and Notre Dame cemented their annual five game arrangement with the ACC, fans everywhere though that we could finally put the recent conference realignment to rest and just enjoy football every Saturday (and Gus Johnson calling games, of course). However, latest reports have Maryland heading to the Big Ten, with Rutgers poised to follow suit to give the aforementioned conference a total of 14 programs starting in 2014. What does this mean for the landscape of college football? More chaos.
Most NHL fans can agree that the summer of 2004 was the beginning of the most excruciating year-long period in the history of the league. Coming off an entertaining Tampa Bay Lightning cup victory, fans looked towards the future with slight optimism that the players and owners would reach a deal before the pre-season started. Optimism turned into pessimism as the months passed by and an entire season was wiped out. Unfortunately, history may repeat itself this year.