Penn State’s Bradley To Meet With Pitt About Job

Multiple sources close to the football programs at Penn State and the University of Pittsburgh have indicated to SbB that acting Penn State head football coach Tom Bradley is the leading candidate for the defensive coordinator position under new Pitt head football coach Paul Chryst.

Pitt's Paul Chryst thinks Tom Bradley is good fit as assistant

(Fit for Pitt? Bradley coached under Joe Paterno for 33 years at Penn State)

One source close to the Pitt program told SbB that Bradley is Chryst’s first choice for the job, but because of Bradley’s longtime association with the Penn State program - and his reported close ties to Jerry Sandusky - the Pitt coach will have to get school athletic director Steve Pederson and other Pitt officials and donors to sign off first. Read more…

Pitt Hires UW Assistant Chryst As Football Coach

In a Thursday morning press release, Pittsburgh announced that Wisconsin assistant football coach Paul Chryst has agreed to become its head football coach.

Paul Chryst

Chryst will be introduced to the public at a 3pm ET press conference at the Panthers’ practice facility.

Multiple sources also confirmed that Chryst will retain his duties as offensive coordinator of Wisconsin in the Rose Bowl, with one source indicating to SbB that will entail Chryst spending “three days in Pasadena.

Wisconsin Athletic Director Barry Alvarez played a key role in Pitt’s decision to hire Chryst, as a source close to the Pitt program told SbB that the former longtime Badgers football coach convinced longtime friend and influential Pitt booster A.C. Dellovade to champion the Chryst candidacy to other prominent Pitt donors and officials.

Chryst, who is credited for an impressive makeover of the Wisconsin offense dating to 2005, replaces Todd Graham, who coincidentally got the nod over Chryst for the Pitt job last year - before abruptly departing for Arizona State a week ago.

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Panther on ‘Liar’ Graham: ‘I feel like dirt, abused’

In departing for Arizona State today, ex-Pittsburgh football coach Todd Graham chose to inform Panther players of the news via forwarded text message from a Pitt football staffer.

Todd Graham is a liar

As you might expect, such a lack of respect from a now-former coach did not sit well with at least one Pitt football player: Panther receiver Devin Street.

Devin Street eviscerates Todd Graham on Twitter

In a series of Tweets today, Street eviscerated his former coach - and Graham’s wife Penni - with the following entries to his personal Twitter.com account:

D_Street_15 Devin street
Be careful of those car salesman’s out there
35 minutes ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
High Octane ! His plan was running on fumes
39 minutes ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
I wish I would have wrote all the crazy stuff he said throughout the year
1 hour ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
No class, he’s a quitter, soft, liar, hypocrite.
1 hour ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
He was a damn diva
1 hour ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
Here goes Mr. Hollywood img.ly/bvdQ
1 hour ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
He’s already doing photo shoots for ASU ill tweet it in a second
1 hour ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
He just lied to all those damn recruits too not even 2 days ago

1 hour ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
Y’all should have new when he put his face up everywhere instead of the players
1 hour ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
He’s an actor he did it to rice then us now he’s gonna do it to ASU… That energy is fake he has them fooled
1 hour ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
He wanna preach so much he needs to read “Thou shall not lie”
1 hour ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
Another quote he said was ” I don’t care if I get fired I’m a millionaire I can go to the caribbean and be fine” #selfish
1 hour ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
He look like a star ! But only on Camera !!!
2 hours ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
What’s AZ State thinking !?
2 hours ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
Todd Graham can’t break us ! #Pittnation
2 hours ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
If y’all say we can’t get mad .. Y’all are crazy you grown men out there how would you feel if you been lied to and used
2 hours ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
I’m literally sick.. That man pulled me in his office one on one and lied to me
3 hours ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
Hmm Penni (The Liars Wife) twitter magically disappeared
3 hours ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
pic.twitter.com/HMiKQ6gP The Liar got his Colors on already
3 hours ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
Just to let yall know he just told us he’s here to stay when Coach McGee left .. Said him and his coaches have 5 year contracts
3 hours ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
I feel like dirt and I was just abused. For a year
4 hours ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
Arizona filled with some liars dog
4 hours ago

D_Street_15 Devin street
He always said most people quit before they achieve something great …. #fraud
5 hours ago

As also noted by Scout.com national recruiting analyst Bob Lichtenfels, Graham’s wife Penni, along with others close to the former Pitt coach, immediately deleted their personal Twitter accounts after the news broke of Graham’s ASU move:

Graham no time to talk to players but Penni Graham, Maria Norvell, Mike Norvell, Bo Graham had time to delete Twitter accounts

Though in the context of Graham’s abrupt departure, Street did impart at least one Tweet that Pitt fans might qualify as good news:

Devin Street is not a quitter

D_Street_15 Devin street
Hey people who think I’m leaving ! I’m not going no where I’m not no quitter !
2 hours ago

A redshirt sophomore, Street led the team in receiving last season.

Follow Brooks on Twitter or join him on Facebook for real-time updates

Takes Pittsburgh To Get Penny Out Of WV Fans

The state of West Virginia pulled through last night with a command performance at the Pitt-West Virginia basketball game.

Pitt Coach Tom Herrion Hit in Face By Penny By WV Fans

(What? It was for the toll bridge on the way home)

Two times the delightful West Virginia fans lobbed debris onto the court. Second time it happened, a penny hit Pitt assistant coach Tom Herrion in the face.


That prompted this gem from (now-hoarse) Big East Network TV analyst Mark Adams: “Happens once, okay, happens twice, UNACCEPTABLE!

What, you didn’t know about the debris-on-the-court mulligan in WV? State law, homie.

Bob Huggins yells at WV fans for throwing debris on the court

Then there’s our man Hugs, who weighed on the public address system.

Read more…

Pitt Parade Fan Tosses Ball Thru 5-Story Window

His identity is still unknown, but if Dave Wannstedt is wise he’ll find out pronto who it was who rifled a football from the street and into an upper-floor window of a church during the Penguins’ victory parade on Monday in downtown Pittsburgh. If you haven’t see the video by now, we have it below.

Penguins fan throws football

It was before the parade when this guy started throwing a football at the fifth floor window of the Diocese of Pittsburgh building. Word on the street is that he was throwing the ball to a priest. Accounts vary as to how many tries it took for him to nail the target, but an eyewitness thinks he knows for sure. Read more…

Former Pitt Star’s NBA Career Screwed by Screw?

Sam Young, the former Pittsburgh Panthers basketball star who isn’t DeJuan Blair, is getting ready for the June 25 NBA Draft. In preparation for his possible picking, Sam has been trying out with different teams.

Sam Young Pitt

One of those teams was the Toronto Raptors. While working out with the Canadian club last weekend (man, I could sure go for some Canadian Club right now), Young was trying to see how high he could get. No, he wasn’t hanging with Corie Blount - Sam was testing his vertical leap.

You would think jumping up wouldn’t be so dangerous, but it turned out to be a painful experience for Young - not for his feet, but his arm, thanks to a wayward screw.

Read more…

Speed Read: Phillies Fans Boo Ring Ceremony?!

Congratulations, Philadelphia sports fans, you’ve done it again. Nothing on the lines of booing Santa Claus or cheering Michael Irvin’s career-ending neck injury, but booing during the team’s World Series ring celebration? That’s pretty impressive. As the PHILADELPHIA DAILY NEWS reports, the recipient of Phillies’ fans hatred was former starting pitcher Adam Eaton, as you can see in this video clip (you’ll hear the “You Suck” starting raining down at around 2:45):

Let’s face it: Eaton was hardly a key contributor to the Phillies’ World Series run. He went 4-8 last season with a 5,80 ERA,  and was left off of the postseason roster before being cut this spring. And yes, the Phillies are still on the hook for his contract to the tune of $9 million this season, so you can understand why he’s hardly the favorite son of Phillies fans.

Adam Eaton gets his World Series ring

But booing someone at the ring ceremony? Isn’t that supposed to be just about the most positive thing that can happen at a sporting event - the recognition of an amazing team accomplishment regardless of what any individual did. Pat Burrell, now with the Rays, flew in for the ceremony and received a hero’s welcome. As BIG LEAGUE STEW notes, even So Taguchi got a World Series ring.

Plus, the guy showed a sense of humor about the whole thing, acting like he was Neil Armstrong getting a ticker tape parade down Broadway. Personally, I would have been waving to the crowd, but just with one, middle finger. I guess $9 million for doing nothing and a shiny World Series ring can bring a guy a lot of inner peace.

Meanwhile, there’s a battle starting today for a prize even more tacky than a World Series ring but just as coveted: the green jacket awarded to the winner of The Masters. There’s no guarantee of who will be having the green jacket placed on them by defending champion Trevor Immelman on Sunday (unless Immelman repeats…now, excuse me while I find a rag to clean up the Orange Crush I spit out of my mouth from laughing while typing that),  there is one thing for sure: everyone hates the new course design.

GOLF.COM has a lengthy preview featuring golf writers and anonymous pros, and everyone takes a shot at the new course design, saying that it’s “not Tiger-proofed, it’s excitement-proofed” and that they’ve “sucked the life out of the tournament.” The par-5s are too long to reach in two for anyone, meaning it’s an exciting battle of wedges and midrange putting.

Gary Player

The three names at the top of the list as winners are: Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson and Padraig Harrington. One name not on the list of contenders is Gary Player, but there will some attention on him for the first two days: at 73, he’s playing in his 52nd and final Masters tournament. There will be some tears shed when he finishes his round on Friday, but there likely won’t be an emotional outpouring by the fans/patrons like we’ve seen in the past for Jack Nicklaus or Arnold Palmer.

And that’s too bad: Player has been a remarkable ambassador for the sport, whose fame in the US was damaged by being South African at a time when that was considered shameful, and not being quite as good as Jack or Arnie (or even as charismatic as Lee Trevino). But he won nine majors in his career, including three Masters, and did more than any other player in the 1960s and 1970s to make golf an international game.

Plus, he’s been a remarkable philanthropist, rising more than $30 million for his Player Foundation building school in South Africa. So let’s all give a polite golf clap to the Black Knight as he gets ready to head off into the sunset.

Finally, CAGEWRITER says that among the hopeful contestants at the open tryouts for Season 10 of Spike TV’s “The Ultimate Fighter” were several former NFL players. Among those trying to get into the house this season were former Bucs first round draft pick Marcus Jones, former Colts lineman Rex Richards and former Packers running back/returner Herbert Goodman. This season is focusing on heavyweights, so sadly Johnnie Morton couldn’t use this as a way to spark an MMA comeback.

  • Usually athlete blogs are about as exciting as reading hog futures, but the one by Chantelle Anderson of the WNBA’s Atlanta Dream is pretty interesting (arguably more so than WNBA games). Her latest post details her internal debate on whether to post a bathing suit photo on her Web site, and the relationship of sports and sex appeal. Personally, I’d vote “yes” on seeing more skin from her:
  • Chantelle Anderson

  • It might take Randy Johnson quite some time to get to 300 wins if he keeps giving up three-run bombs to pitchers, like the SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS say he did to Yovani Gallardo, as the Big Unit’s Giants debut was a 4-2 loss to the Brewers.
  • In possibly the least-shocking off-season NFL news this year, a Cincinnati Bengal was arrested Sunday morning. The CINCINNATI ENQUIRER says that Leon Hall, who led the team in interceptions last season, has been charged with a DUI after hitting a 0.15 BA level. Bonus points: he tried to convince the officer that he needed to get home because his wife was having a baby.
  • The TREASURE COAST PALM say police in Port St. Lucie, FL, are looking for a man who ran naked across the outfield at a youth baseball game before hopping the fence and getting into a waiting car. Man claiming to be umpire at game says suspect got “hung up” on fence. Ouch!
  • An interesting item from the ASU WEB DEVIL, a student publication of Arizona State: a Sun Devil football player had his wallet stolen from his locker at Sun Devil Stadium, losing around $270. (The story is halfway down.) Not only do I want to know what a student-athlete is doing with almost $300 in walking around money, but now we know why James Harden is leaving ASU for the NBA Draft (that, and millions of dollars).
  • Also declaring for the NBA Draft last night: USC freshman DeMar DeRozan, Pittsburgh center DeJuan Blair and Arizona’s mercurial Jordan Hill.
  • Dustin Pedroia probably shouldn’t expect to be getting the keys to his hometown any time soon, after the SACRAMENTO BEE says he dissed Woodland, CA in a magazine interview, saying it’s “a dump. You can quote me on that. I don’t give a …” I’m sure this has nothing to do with the fact that his brother was arrested on child molestation charges there in January.
  • Only in Australia: NINE NEWS says that the entire North Melbourne Kangaroos Aussie Rules Football team had to appear at a press conference to apologize for a video they made showing a condom-wearing rubber chicken having sex with a chicken carcass. And yes, of course we have the video (caution, NSFW due to graphic song lyrics and simulated rubber chicken on chicken sex):

  • In European soccer news, Chelsea ripped Liverpool 3-1 in their Champions League quarterfinal, which THE TIMES OF LONDON says makes them an overwhelming favorite to get to the semifinals again. If so, they’ll likely play Barcelona, who thumped Bayern Munich 4-0.
  • THE SPORTING BLOG wants you to know that you should never criticize the Hillsdale College baseball team, even if they’ve lost nine of their last ten games. Lest you wind up with a mound of dead animal carcasses on your front door, the fate that befell an unwitting writer at the college newspaper.

Who would you take with the first pick in the 2009 NBA Draft?

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Speed Read: UConn’s Calhoun Near Escape Plan

There was a lot of attention surrounding UConn entering last night’s Sweet 16 matchup with Purdue, and it was all for the wrong reasons. In the midst of an ongoing investigation of the school’s recruitment of now-departed super-stud prospect Nate Miles, no one has received as much heat as UConn’s architect himself, Jim Calhoun.

jim calhoun

Some are even calling the early stages of the NCAA’s review, which follows an investigation launched by Yahoo! sports, a second-coming of the precursor to Kelvin Sampson’s ouster at Indiana. The logic runs that, once the NCAA actually starts digging deep into the UConn records, they’ll find that Miles was just the latest in a string of recruits who were wooed by illegal meals, gifts and contact.

So what is a Hall of Famer like Calhoun to do? That’s easy: Win the whole thing, then walk away. If Calhoun’s Huskies get out of the gate as well as they did against Purdue last night. Not only did UConn sprint to an 8-0 lead and never look back, the Huskies showed the balance and Hasheem Thabeet-led inside dominance that could lift them back to another national title.

Sure, they’re out West, but with the additional inspiration UConn has received since its exit from the Big East tournament — first Calhoun’s hospitalization, then the Yahoo! investigation — UConn suddenly looks like the biggest beast left in the dance.

Meanwhile, Missouri proved that John Calipari - a past subject of NCAA indiscretions & Calhoun’s scorn after he stole onetime UConn recruit Marcus Camby - still has some work to do if he’s ever going to deliver a national title to the C-USA program he’s taken under his wing. Mizzou did everything that Memphis tries to do — run, trap, press and run some more — except they did it more effectively and efficiently. Even a late heat-check from Tyreke Evans and near-collapse from Mizzou couldn’t resuscitate Memphis, which means that the one team standing between Calhoun and a return trip to the Final Four is Mike Anderson. At least we know what the game plan will be come Saturday: Everybody press! Ready, break!

That wasn’t the case back East, where UConn once assumed it would be, and where No. 1 seed Pittsburgh struggled through another lackluster tourney win. It’s certainly not what Pitt fans will want to hear, but the Panthers just don’t seem to be clicking on all cylinders. In fact, one could argue that Pitt hasn’t played on its top speed since knocking off UConn … again … near the end of the regular season. In fact, let’s run the gauntlet of recent Pitt performances: Lost to West Virginia in Big East tournament, underwhelmed in beating No. 16 seed, trailed No. 8 seed Oklahoma State throughout much of second-round win, then eked past a Xavier team that should have been completely overwhelmed.

If that sounds like Pitt has set the table for a suddenly hot Villanova team to swoop in a steal a ticket to the Final Four, well, maybe they have. The Wildcats smoked a Duke team that was finally exposed at the point, with streaky shooters and with no semblance of a legitimate interior game. Perhaps not surprisingly, Duke again rolled snake eyes in the tournament because it was over-reliant on outside shooting and couldn’t stop a deep set of athletic guards and swingmen. Let’s see, Virginia Commonwealth (Eric Maynor), West Virginia (Joe Alexander), anyone in the Villanova starting lineup. Hmmm, anyone else see a pattern?

But there were other sports outside of the tournament right? Well, we suppose.

  • We’ve seen plenty of big sports stars in bad movies in the past — Kazaam comes to mind, no? — but none may be worse than the upcoming flick Never Surrender, which features Quinton Rampage Jackson, Anderson Silva, Heath Herring, and Georges St. Pierre and B.J. Penn.

washington capitals champ t-shirt

darren rovell fifth third burger

If I were Jim Calhoun, I would try to

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Speed Read: Hey, Does Anyone Want To Be #1?

This year’s NCAA basketball tournament is apparently going to be the first one played without any #1 seeds, because nobody seems to want to claim any of them. This week, Pitt decided to be the latest top-ranked team to tank it, trailing by as many as 20 points in the second half in an 81-73 loss to Providence. The Friars are suddenly looking pretty good for an NCAA bid, with 9 Big East wins and 17 overall. This was their first win over a #1 team in nearly 33 years. Luckily for all involved, Jonathan Xavier was not at the game.

Providence upsets Pittsburgh

Professional golf, which ceased to exist last June when Tiger Woods got hurt, will finally resume today. Nobody’s happier for this development than the other golfers who Tiger will be competing against, whoever they are. Tiger’s first round match at the Accenture World Match Play Championships tees off at 2:02 Eastern time this afternoon. His opponent is someone named Brendan Jones, who just learned how to play golf last week. How confident is NBC that Tiger will make it to Saturday’s semifinals? They’re airing ads promoting Tiger’s appearance on the NBC broadcast this weekend.

Tiger Woods

(He didn’t win anything. This is just the trophy he gets to carry around every day for being Tiger Woods)

Do you have World Baseball Classic fever yet? Does anyone? This WBC seemed like a good idea a couple of years ago, but this year’s rosters are devoid of many of the sport’s biggest stars. Your U.S. roster features such giants of the game like Chris Ianetta, Jeremy Guthrie, and Matt Thornton. The Dominican team is without Albert Pujols and Manny Ramirez (who’s from New York City, mind you), but now gets to deal with the distraction that is A-Roid. It’s all moot, of course, since the powerhouse Italians are winning the whole thing. Who can stop Val Pascucci and Nick Punto?

As a reward for winning the title last year, the Celtics get to have 29 players on their roster. Case in point: the C’s have signed the recently waived Mikki Moore, who was playing for the Kings. And now the long-rumored acquisition of Stephon Marbury is about to happen, since Steph was finally bought out by the Knicks. Shockingly, New York was not successful in swinging a trade for a guy whose salary is $21 million and has spent his season hanging out at bus stops and buying tickets to see his own team play.

Stephon Marbury attends Knicks-Lakers game

 • TMZ says that Charles Barkley might have to don a pink prison uniform during his five-day stay in the same jail that houses rapper DMX. Although, it appears as if Chuck has been given “work release” and only has to be in jail from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. So, basically he’s staying in a crappy hotel for five nights and wearing a pink snuggie.

Charles Goldberg of the Auburn blog THE GOLD MINE writes that highly-regarded high school running back David Oku has moved from Oklahoma to Lincoln, Nebraska to be closer to some girl he met while on an official visit to Nebraska. And his parents are OK with their kid taking off to go live on his own and date a college girl. This seems like a great idea.

• Speaking of Stephon Marbury, the poor guy had to accept a buyout of around $2-3 million less than his salary for “playing” this season for the Knicks. But Darren Rovell of CNBC says that Marbury earned enough that he could’ve bought a pair of his Starbury sneakers every nine seconds.

The CFL isn’t recognizing there’s a recession, according to the VANCOUVER SUN. Four CFL cities (all of which are home to teams called the Roughriders) are in the process of securing funds for new stadiums or improvements to their current facilities.

Canada

• Former major league pitcher Rick Helling on steroids: “There is this problem with steroids. It’s happening. It’s real. And it’s so prevalent that guys who aren’t doing it are feeling pressure to do it because they’re falling behind. It’s not a level playing field. We’ve got to figure out a way to address it.” When did he say this? 1998. TIME has the story of a guy who went ignored way too long.

• The SPORTS HERNIA points out that the Mets’ Fernando Tatis missed Monday’s intrasquad game with a rather unusual injury:

Fernando Tatis palm injury

• PRO FOOTBALL TALK says that Eric Mangini and the rest of the new Browns staff is “lukewarm” on Brady Quinn. Which is rather insulting, considering Quinn won all those national championships in college.

• As if there aren’t enough Shulas running around, Dan Shula — son of David and grandson of Don — has been hired as an assistant coach at Illinois State.

• The Supreme Court may be hearing a case that results in a ban on public school coaches participating with members of their teams in prayer or other religious expression, according to the TENNESSEAN. Current precedent doesn’t allow coaches to initiate prayer, but doesn’t necessarily ban them from participating.

• The Oakland A’s have scrapped plans to build a new ballpark in the East Bay suburb of Fremont. San Jose has now apparently emerged as a new contender to rip the team away from the Mausoleum.

• WITH LEATHER says that Jason Giambi has aspirations to be a bouncer at a strip club after he retires from baseball. And Rick’s Cabaret in New York City is first in line with a job offer (link somewhat NSFW).

Every week, the #1 team in college basketball totally craps the bed. What new team should get a shot at #1?

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Danica’s Tat Taken Out Of Latest SI Bikini Shoot

Danica Patrick has a cute li’l back tattoo, but you wouldn’t have known it from her latest Sports Illustrated Swimsuit shoot.

Danica Patrick with tattoo without

(Danica: with tattoo and without)

• Just how bad have things become for the San Francisco 49ers? They might soon welcome in Michael Vick AND Raiders fans.

Hasheem Thabeet survives a fall, but his #1 UConn Huskies do not.

Mike Leach & Texas Tech are taking their cases to the media.

Read more…