Thoughts regarding sports and mentoring.
Caution: Severe Tennessee Titan, Memphis Grizzlies, Chicago Cubs, and Scott Stallings bias.

Best Red – No Love Lost

April 28th, 2015 | Comments Off on Best Red – No Love Lost

Short takes on relevant sports and character issues.

scuffleThe NBA playoffs are here and not disappointing, delivering highlights and some of the best basketball from most of the best teams. Unfortunately, in two of the more lopsided playoff series, physicality is getting out of hand.


1. No Love Lost

Thankfully the the Dallas Mavericks vs. Houston Rockets series only experienced small, chippy moments from its Game 4 – Boston vs. Cleveland, on the other hand, was completely out of control. One ejection, two technical fouls, two unnecessary and unwarranted injuries, and three games lost to suspension.

NBA officials on and off the court are not to blame. The lowered standards of coaches and players are the real culprit. When respect for each other and the game take a backseat to “competitiveness,” “pride,” and other sports lingo masking players and coaches’ poor sportsmanship in losing efforts, the results are as ridiculous as burning down a CVS.


2. Riot Mom

riot mom
The tragic story of Freddie Gray and the subsequent Baltimore riots created an unexpected and interesting twist on Monday, when a mother of a young, masked rioter publicly reprimanded her son in front of the entire nation.

Mentors, coaches, teachers, and community leaders can never take the place of an involved parent.  If you are a contributing member of society, call your mother or father today and thank them. If you are not, you better hope your mother does not find out and humiliate you on national television.


3. Respect and Authority

Suspect Dies Baltimore
The increasing public displays of disrespect for officials in sports is a prophetic warning for a culture moving in the same direction. Consider how the world’s diminishing respect for authority will culminate in more and larger displays of violence like Ferguson to Baltimore.

It starts with a parent at the ballpark screaming obscenities at a little league umpire or dressing down a teacher for grading too harshly at a parent-teacher conference.

It continues with professional athletes using homophobic slurs towards the commissioner of their league and a congressmen shouting disrespectfully at the office of the President of the United States.

We can choose respect for each other and the authorities placed over us – especially when they make mistakes. Only then will we be in any position to affect change over the true injustices that are happening all around us.


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Best Red – Believe

May 26th, 2013 | Comments Off on Best Red – Believe

Best Red shares the best sports articles or inspiring videos of the week.


1. The Block
Courtesy of CBS Sports and Roy Hibbert

Defense in any sport is a precious and sadly fleeting commodity. In the NBA, a growing fear of posterization has led many players to not take the risk this Pacer did.

2. People are Awesome
Courtesy of YouTube and Andreas Norholt

Visual proof that anything is possible.

3. High School Training Ground
Courtesy of TED and Malcolm London

“Young poet, educator and talented activist Malcolm London performs his stirring poem about life on the front lines of high school.” Words cannot describe his words.

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Just Admit It

January 9th, 2012 | 1 comment

Our response to Tim Tebow’s season reveals the character of us all.

We have all been wrong.

I thought The Matrix was going to be a bad movie.

I thought the iPhone was too expensive for a phone.

I thought shrimp was a slimy and undesirable appetizer.

And I thought all of Tim Tebow’s critics had an axe to grind.

I was wrong.

His critics (who include former NFL quarterbacks, scouts, and current general managers) have legitimate concerns about his potential and future in the NFL.

Tim Tebow is not an elite NFL passer-sometimes missing open receivers, sometimes too slowly looking over his progressions, or occasionally winding up a little too long to throw downfield. He is not the next Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, or Drew Brees.

I admit it.

For comparison, here are two quarterbacks’ regular season statistics:

courtesy of

Each young passer led their team to the playoffs. Each quarterback was supported by a solid defense. Each quarterback did more damage on the ground than in the air.

The 24-year old quarterback is Tim Tebow, this year.

The 26-year old is former NFL MVP Steve McNair, who led his 1999 Titan team to a Super Bowl appearance with the help of a far more miraculous game-winning play.

Both won their first playoff games in an unconventional way.

So, in the face of one of the more memorable Denver playoff victories against a favored Pittsburgh team, how will those same critics respond the day after?

NFL gurus and fans alike that doubted or touted Tebow have to admit it. Even if this is his only season as the starting quarterback for the Denver Broncos, it is a season worth remembering. A humbling contrition that both sides can admit after Sunday.

Faced with the same criticism and fandemonium, Tim chose humility. Why can’t we?

Humility is a difficult, but powerful, demonstration of character.

For this reason, The Lead Block challenges its players to play with humility on the field and live in humility off it. To find out how to become a part and click ABOUT.

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Titan Thursday – Week 14 Predictions

December 8th, 2011 | 1 comment

Every week, Titan Thursday will share predictions of each week’s NFL match-ups.

Overall Record: 123-69

Week 13 (Record: 10-6)

Shame of the Week: Kansas City Chiefs over the Chicago Bears
The similarity in name of Tyler Palko and Shane Falco was hard enough to ignore. Then, the quarterback Kansas City team management brought in to “solve” the situation leaves the game and the replacement Chiefs win like this?! Classic.

Pick ‘Em Again: Falcons over Texans
If the NFL played these games again this weekend, under the same conditions, I would pick the exact same way.  And I genuinely believe I would be right this time.

Shoulda’ Known Better: Seahawks over Eagles, Dolphins over Raiders
On any given Sunday… ah, this is the only way this game could ever end.


Week 14

New Orleans Saints over the Tennessee Titans
The Titans are 0-4 when allowing more than 17 points this season. And since New Orleans has not been held to less than 21 points in any game, the Titans will have to score early and often. The Saints are a mere 3-3 away and in the elements this year.

Dallas Cowboys over the New York Giants
This is by far the biggest risk of a pick this week. Everything points to a predicatable Dallas December meltdown and Giant resurrection looking eerily similar to the 2007 Super Bowl squad. Regardless the outcome, this is hardly the NFC East clincher.


Steelers over Browns
Just when I thought recklessly capturing the Cleveland market was a memory.

Patriots over Redskins
Rex Grossman should have a great [fantasy] day, that inevitably will go up in flames.

Dolphins over Eagles
Who am I to argue with Karlos Dansby’s divine theory of Tebow-time transference?

Falcons over Panthers
This is the biggest game of Newton’s rookie season. Winning would send a message.

Buccaneers over Jaguars
This game is a toss up and not in the good way. Both teams are struggling right now.

Bengals over Texans
A.J. Yates received the benefit of one of Atlanta’s worst offensive games of the year.

Lions over Vikings
Christian Ponder will shred a defense on Sunday. Then again, so will Matt Stafford.

Jets over Chiefs
Fireman Ed hopes the Chief huddle looks something like this on Sunday afternoon.

Ravens over Colts
Baltimore has some history of losing these kinds of games and Orvlosky looks great.

Broncos over Bears
Look for another 4th quarter featuring Tebow-time. The Bears’ injuries are just sad.

49ers over Cardinals
With the division clinched, Jim Harbaugh and Co. are more vulnerable to letdowns.

Chargers over Bills
The Bolts playoff hopes are probably far-fetched, but hope floats for another week.

Packers over Raiders
Are there more disappointing teams than the Raiders, Bills, and Lions this season?

Seahawks over Rams
Underestimating the Seahawks and overestimating the Rams was my mistake.



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Best Red – Fantastic Friday

August 12th, 2011 | Comments Off on Best Red – Fantastic Friday

Every Friday, Best Red will list the best sports articles (or videos) of the week.

1. Foul Balls and Fair Fans
Courtesy of Yahoo! Sports and ‘Duk

Last month, a foul ball led to even fouler behavior from a young fan. Thankfully, these fans restored hope that life is about more than just claiming a souvenir.

2. Inter-fan-rence
Courtesy of YouTube

What does the WWE and Arena Football have in common?  Appreciation for fans like this at their events.  Real sports eject fans for interfering, not congratulate them.

3. Fan vs. Radio Broadcaster
Courtesy of Matthew J. Darnell and Yahoo! Sports

I am not an Atlanta Falcons fan and even I agree that the Red and Black will again Rise Up as an elite NFL power.  Then again, this broadcaster is a little over the top.

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Best Red – Putter Slinging

August 5th, 2011 | 2 comments

Every Friday, Best Red will list the best sports articles (or videos) of the week.

1. Jim Nantz Interview
Courtesy of YouTube, CBS, and The Greenbrier Classic

A great interview with the 2011 Greenbrier Champ.  Although, a quick look at the view count only furthers my suspicions there is a conspiracy to not promote Scott.

2. The Proud Parents
Courtesy of and Tim & Cheryl Stallings

My favorite part was Tim (Scott’s father) declaring to those in the Greeenbrier stands around him, “That’s my son!”  The family picture on the bridge is an instant classic.

3. The Value of a Win
Courtesy of Scott Stallings and

When he is not making dramatic comebacks, taking victory laps around the green, and slinging putters, Stallings writes for an awesome blog over on

4. The Big Moment
Courtesy of YouTube and the PGA Tour

Congrats again, Scott and Jennifer.  I may or may not be trying to copyright the ‘Putter Sling’ celebration and would greatly appreciate tips for proper technique.


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Best Red – The Argument

July 29th, 2011 | Comments Off on Best Red – The Argument

Every Friday, Best Red will list the best sports articles (or videos) of the week.

1. The Vince Young Argument
Courtesy of and NFL Total Access

Jamie Dukes and Michael Lombardi clash on the enigma that is Vince Young’s pro career.  Michael Vick has a chance to further establish his legend of redemption.

2. Punter holds #5 ransom from Donovan McNabb
Courtesy of MJD and Yahoo! Sports

I could easily turn this into a screenplay, starring Keanu Reeves as Chris Kluwe and Morgan Freeman as Donovan McNabb.  Just kidding.  No way I’d get Freeman.

3. NFL Players ‘Thank You Fans’ video
Courtesy of YouTube and the NFLPA

I suppose expecting an apology for grinding to a halt the most profitable business in the world during a recession, was too much to hope for… but at least it’s something.

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Weekly Block – Locked-In

July 27th, 2011 | Comments Off on Weekly Block – Locked-In

Each Wednesday, the Weekly Block will cover everything that matters in the world of sports.  To me.  And maybe you, too.

1. Scott Stallings (22nd at RBC Canadian Open)(88th in FedExCup Points)

Holding strong in the top 100, Stallings added another strong finish to his rookie season.  He also shared this interesting article about the PGA’s labor situation.

2. Chicago Cubs (42-61)(5th in NL Central)

One of the most difficult skills to learn in baseball is locking in on a ball in the milliseconds it takes to cross the plate. And Starlin Castro is a perfect example.

3. Memphis Grizzlies (Lockout Love Letter)

From Shane Battier: Dear @NBA, the @NFL makeup has inspired us all. How’s this sound? You, me, a house at the shore, some Asti, and that mixtape you made me?

4. Tennessee Titans (Locker Era Begins)

As expected, Baptist Sports Park was open to Titan players who flocked to the facility from all parts of the country.  Jake Locker made the biggest statement, arriving first.

5. Final Block (Locked-In)

Unless you live under a rock, you heard that the NFL Lockout officially ended yesterday morning.  With that highly anticipated settlement will come a flurry of activity not seen in the modern era of professional football.

But, what does this mean to the average NFL fan?

First, your favorite team will probably make some significant roster changes.  The player salary cap (shared NFL revenue allotted for players’ salaries) is lower than 2010.  More importantly, the NFL will now impose a salary spending floor.

This means that several teams will reduce their star-studded rosters (Cowboys, Giants, Raiders, and Steelers), while others will be required to expand (Buccaneers, Seahawks, Bengals, Bills, and Bears).

Second, your favorite team will probably under-perform early in the season.  Off-season training activities were missed league-wide and even though training camps will start this week, most are already way behind schedule.

This is good news if your team has a difficult schedule early, because it is likely the opponents will not be at their best.  Then again, perennial powers (i.e. Patriots, Steelers, Colts) will be ready from running consistent systems.

Finally, if your favorite team is in a transition, prepare for a tougher season than usual.  The lockout wasted critical introduction and installation months for new front offices, coaches, coordinators, and players.

Look for the Titans, 49ers, Panthers, Cardinals, and Vikings to struggle early and often as they scramble to make up for lost time from this off-season.  Keep an eye on the Cards though, because they have the best opportunity to prove me wrong.

At the end of the day, the resolution to the NFL Lockout really only means one thing… football is back.  Amen.

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Best Red – Sure Bet

July 22nd, 2011 | Comments Off on Best Red – Sure Bet

Every Friday, Best Red will be the best sports articles (or videos) I found this week.

1. Arian Foster signs CBA
Courtesy of Arian Foster (@ArianFoster) and Twitter

The former University of Tennessee and current Houston Texan running back posted this last night on his twitter feed.  Apparently, the NFL Lockout is still on…

2. NCAA12 Gator Chomp
Courtesy of YouTube and EA Sports

I may be a closet Florida Gator fan (in post-Tebow depression), but this is still a hilarious spot by EA promoting one of their perennial, powerhouse video games.

3. Sure Bet
Courtesy of Yahoo! Sports and Jay Busbee

If I were taking a sure bet on someone making a clutch shot, the last person on the planet I would bet against would be #23.  Besides, who heckles Michael Jordan?


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Best Red – Best of the Best

July 15th, 2011 | Comments Off on Best Red – Best of the Best

Every Friday, Best Red will be the best sports articles (or videos) I found this week.

1. Best Dressed at the ESPYs
Courtesy of David Brown and Yahoo! Sports

As fans, let us never forget that all sports are for our entertainment.  Leaving the only question… are you not entertained?!  I am, Mr. Wilson.  I am.

2. Best Sports Twitter Users
Courtesy of Sports Illustrated

Regardless your location or favorite sport, you would be hard-pressed to scroll down this list and not find someone worth adding to your twitter feed.

3. Best Futbol Match Ever
Courtesy of YouTube and ESPN

U.S. Women’s Soccer will play for another World Cup.  But before booting France on Wednesday, came the greatest come-from-behind victory in the history of futbol.

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