Syracuse To Crap On The Memory Of Its Legends?

Imagine that tomorrow, Bud Selig holds a press conference and announces that MLB is unretiring Jackie Robinson’s number. Selig says that because of players like Mariano Rivera and Bruce Sutter, there is a tradition of outstanding players wearing the number 42, and therefore any future players should be allowed to wear it. We’d storm baseball’s offices with pitchforks and torches, right?

Jim Brown, Ernie Davis, Floyd Little

That’s exactly what many at Syracuse want to do with the number 44. Worn by Jim Brown, Floyd Little and Ernie Davis, among others, the number was finally retired three years ago. But now there’s a groundswell to open it up again and slap it on the back of any old running back who joins the Orange. The most outrageous part of this is that there isn’t more outrage.

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Blog Jam: Rays Getting A Bit Ahead of Themselves

• Yeah, I like you too, Rays, but let’s not start counting our chickens before they hatch now. HOME RUN DERBY points out that this is an officially licensed shirt, not some fan creation selling on the street. Just what we need: a bunch of entitled a-hole Rays fans running around.

Rays cocky t-shirt

• CAGE POTATO reports that former UFC fighter Joe Son has been linked to a 1990 gang rape via DNA testing.

• FANHOUSE informs us that the Titans will lose a fifth-round pick to the Cowboys if the cornerback formerly known as Pacman gets himself arrested and/or suspended. In other words, the Titans are losing a fifth-round pick to the Cowboys.

Charlie Manuel’s mother died this morning, but he’ll manage today’s Game 2 of the NLCS, says MLB.COM.

• On the day The Express opens, THAT MINORITY THING has some words about Ernie Davis.

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Sports Movies Fudge The Truth Sometimes? Wow!

‘The Express’ Savages WVU Fans For No Reason

It’s hardly news, of course that a movie that’s “based on a true story” would fudge some facts, much less a historical sports movie (Sure, the Titans won a playoff game on a last-second, 80-yard reverse. Sure they did). And hey, why not, right? If we already know that the protagonist will succeed, why not have him do so in the face of as much adversity as our sick minds can imagine?

Such was apparently the mindset of the producers of The Express, the story of Heisman winner Ernie Davis and Syracuse’s magical championship season in 1959. In the “uplifting” movie, Davis and his teammates endure untold amounts of harassment from opposing fans, perhaps nowhere more so than in Syracuse’s trip to Morgantown to face West Virginia.

There, the Orangemen encountered nasty, brutal, racist fans who showered the team in garbage, threats, and epithets. In a true testament to the team’s countenance, they struggled through the hostility and kept their championship dreams alive. There is, of course, one teensy little problem with that storyline. Read more…

Kiffin Could Be In Orange - But SU or Tennessee?

Now that Lane Kiffin has been removed from the Raiders, there’s rampant speculation on where the former Oakland coach & USC coordinator might find employment.

Lane Kiffin Otto the Orange Syracuse

We mentioned earlier that Kiffin could end up sitting in the saddle at Syracuse, since Greg Robinson’s tenure is more or less at an end. (Getting no support from the school AD certainly doesn’t help, either. But would you support a team that gets zipped 42-28 by Akron at home?)

Now, new rumors are popping up that Kiffin could be donning an Orange shirt, but not in upstate New York. How does Knoxville sound instead?

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Cowboys-Eagles Highest-Rated Cable Program Eva

• How great was Monday night’s NFL showdown between the Cowboys & Eagles? Great enough to be the most-watched cable TV program ever!

Jessica Simpson

Only gratuitous in-game shots of Jessica Simpson could have raised higher ratings - among other things.

• Let’s see if we can figure out this whole MLB postseason mess.

• Meanwhile, how can Major League Baseball keep children from using steroids? By reviving that old standby - “Just Say No!”

• It seems the Mets & Brewers are more concerned about making tee times than making the playoffs.

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Syracuse Takes Liberties With Ernie Davis Statue

The late great Syracuse tailback and first black Heisman Trophy winner Ernie Davis graduated in 1961. Syracuse unveiled a statue honoring him the other day. But there’s a problem: the sculptor gave his uniform and kicks Nike swooshes. Seeing as how Nike wasn’t around until 1971, poor Ernie’s associated with something not of his era.

Syracuse blog TROY NUNES IS AN ABSOLUTE MAGICIAN also points out that the helmet Davis’ statue is holding is a modern helmet, not one he would have worn. For its part, Syracuse is playing this cool. Athletic Director Daryl Gross tells the SPORTING NEWS in an email it’s an “easy fix. The sculptor is on it and will make it perfect“. Read more…

Major Movie Chronicles Heisman Hero’s Short Life

A new football flick is hitting theaters this fall - a film based on the life story of college all-star Ernie Davis.

Ernie Davis painting

The Express” tells the story of the Syracuse running back & 1961 Heisman Trophy winner - becoming the first African-American to win the award - who sadly never saw his dreams of playing in the NFL come true after dying from leukemia in 1963. Read more…