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Lou Pickney's Online Commentary


September 2, 2007

I love the gym where I work out; they recently added more Precor machines there, meaning they have all modern-style machines on the front row that I like to use. It may seem strange for me to prefer the kind with the moving arm-levers (which I don't utilize in my workout), but I like the newer machines because they have handles on the front, which so far have prevented the iPod accidents I used to have with the older models.

With the old-style Precors, I'd raise my arm up to wipe sweat off my forehead and, boom, the iPod nano goes flying. I'm lucky that those things can take a bit of a beating. Though the battery could use some work; today I was midway through my workout when, poof, the iPod ran out of juice and shut down on me.

There's a guy at the gym who I sometimes have the misfortune of having an overlapping workout time with. I don't know him and have never spoken to him, but he uses this one workout device that requires you to raise and lower yourself using your arms, which happens to be near the Precor machine I usually use. What annoys me is that the guy grunts really *really* loud when he uses it, like he's trying to be Randy Savage at Gold's Gym (only without crapping his pants.) He sounds like a outtake from a sodomy scene in Oz that was cut out because of overacting.

How loud is he? Even with my iPod on, I can hear him very distinctly, and my music is normally loud enough to block out most of the noise around me. And today, with my iPod going out mid-workout, guess who started working out? Gruntman, that's who. I tried to concentrate on U.S. Open tennis and the PGA golf on TV and ignore his disturbing noises.

Speaking of the PGA, how is it that sports that don't lend themselves particularly well to a playoff system like golf and NASCAR go to great lengths to create an artificial playoff format, yet Division I-A college fotball (now known as "FBS" -- seriously) resists it with all its might? Of course the answer is easy on both counts: money. But it is frustrating as a college football fan to hear people turn off their brains and make weak arguments in favor of an antiquated system.

It's not about the students and class schedules. It's not about wearing them out with too many games. It's not about time-honored tradition. It's not about 6-6 teams somehow being "worthy" of playing in a post-season event (which is counter-intuitive to argue since that just rewards mediocrity, but remember, their brains are turned off.)

No, none of those are the case. It's all about money. Cash money. A little bit of it is about power (the major conferences controlling the system instead of the NCAA), but mostly it's about money. Like I've said for years: When in doubt, follow the money.

In an incredible sequence yesterday, two-time defending I-AA/FCS (the new name for I-AA) Appalachian State beat #5 Michigan in Ann Arbor. Incredibly, I received an e-mail about the guy who blocked the last second field goal for App. State, Corey Lynch, in July, and I wrote about him on Draft King in July. In that article I noted that he blocked 3 of 4 field goals last year. So, what do you know, he blocks the potential game-winner for Michigan in what some are calling the biggest upset in college football history.

If that won't help my street cred, nothing will.

For all the guys reading this, I strongly suggest that you check out this gem of a website I found yesterday: Trust me, it's worth taking 30 seconds to check it out. Something tells me you'll spend more than 30 seconds there, though.

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