2008 BLOG ARCHIVES: August-September | June-July | April-May | January-March
2007 BLOG ARCHIVES: October-December | August-September | June-July | April-May
BARCA BLOG HAS MOVED HERE
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 2- 11:10 PM
Freshman forward Steve Tchiengang is expected to return to the lineup Wednesday night when the Commodores take on Illinois-Chicago at 7 p.m. CT at Memorial Gym.
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 26- 12:57 PM
You see them on the sideline cheering for the Commodores every Saturday.
FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 7- 11:45 AM
INTERVIEW WITH FRESHMAN JEFFERY TAYLOR
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 4- 4:59 PM
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 30- 4:35 PM
INTERVIEW WITH FRESHMAN GUARD BRAD TINSLEY
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 28- 4:19 PM
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 24- 4:26 PM
PRICE, RAYS EVEN SERIES
David Price might be human after all.
Price surrendered his first two runs of the playoffs, including a solo homer to pinch hitter Eric Bruntlett, but was still able to close out Tampa Bay's 4-2 win over Philadelphia in Thursday's Game 2 of the World Series.
Even though things didn't go perfectly, manager Joe Madden stuck with the left-hander and the move paid off.
With the tying run at the plate in the ninth and only one out, Price was able to buckle down and retire Chase Utley and Ryan Howard - the heart of the Phillies' lineup -- to preserve the much-needed win for the Rays.
On the night, Price pitched the final 2 1/3 innings and gave up two hits while striking out two and walking one.
One superhuman stat: Left-handed hitters are 0-for-7 with five strikeouts against Price in the postseason.
As for the homer, Price quipped, "I thought Carl Crawford should have caught it."
With the series nodded at 1-1, Game 3 is scheduled for Saturday at 7 p.m. CT in Philadelphia. The game will be televised on FOX.
Freshman infielder Joe Loftus started his Commodore career with a bang last night in the Black and Gold series scrimmage opener at Hawkins Field.
With the Black team trailing 3-0 in the fourth inning, Loftus cut the deficit to one with a two-run homer off starter Caleb Cotham.
"You are always in the game no matter what and the home run kind of got us going," Loftus said. "The pitchers today were the best I ever faced and it helps us get better facing these guys."
The Black team scored two more runs in the fifth to take Game 1, 4-3.
"Lofty" is no stranger to the long ball. He holds the record at his high school -- Academy of Holy Angels -- for most homers in a single season (9) and career (25).
Fans can learn more about Joe, including his transition from Minnesota to the Music City, by watching an interview from earlier this week on VUcommodores.com - click here.
And if you'd like to check out the new freshman class that was rated second overall by Baseball America, the scrimmage will resume tonight with Game 2 at 6 p.m. CT and the finale on Sunday at 1 p.m. CT. Admission is free.
ANOTHER IDOL ANTHEM
Kristy Lee Cook, from American Idol fame, is scheduled to sing the national anthem at Saturday's football game with Duke.
Cook, who finished seventh in the reality series seventh season, will be the second Idol alum to perform the anthem this year at Vanderbilt Stadium. Kellie Pickler, from Idol season 5, also sang the anthem at the season opener against South Carolina.
Cook currently has an album out with Arista Records called "Why Wait". If you can't wait for her performance Saturday, then make sure you're in your seat by 1:50 p.m. CT.
And for those of you coming in town for tomorrow's game against the Blue Devils, don't miss the homecoming parade starting at 10:30 a.m. at Kensington Place.
Four former Commodore standouts will serve as grand marshals of the parade - linebackers Matt Stewart and Nate Morrow, special teams ace Andrew Kerr, and SEC career receptions leader Earl Bennett.
Bennett has played in three games so far as a rookie wide receiver with Chicago this year. He was able to make the trip back to Nashville since the Bears are in a bye week.
NFL ROOKIE NEWS
Speaking of Bennett, here are some more updates on Commodores from last year's team:
Chicago rookie left tackle Chris Williams may see the first action of his professional career next week when the Bears host Detroit on November 1. Williams, the Bears top pick in the 2008 draft, suffered an injury to his lower back during the preseason and has been inactive since.
During his time off the field, Williams was able to gain some experience by observing the veterans on the roster.
"They see everything," he told the Associated Press earlier this week. "They see stuff you never even thought about looking at. Just being with that group and just being able to hear the conversations and the questions they ask about certain things, you learn a lot."
Buffalo activated linebacker Marcus Buggs off the practice squad for this week's game at Miami. Buggs will take the place of injured John DiGiorgio, who is out for the year with a torn ligament in his right knee. The Bills are in first place in the AFC East with a 5-1 record.
Also, linebacker Jonathan Goff saw his first NFL action last Sunday in the New York Giants' 29-17 win over San Francisco. After fracturing the transverse process in his back during preseason, Goff made an impact in his pro debut with two tackles on special teams. The Giants will have a big game against Pittsburgh this weekend. Both teams stand at 5-1 and lead their respective divisions.
A limited number of tickets remain for the game with Duke. All seats are $22 each, so bring your family and friends out as the Commodores try to earn six victories and bowl eligibility for the first time since 1982. Let's fill the stands with Black and Gold!
VIDEO OF THE DAY
I wanted to learn more about the Triangle, which is where Duke is located, so I emailed my good friend, Troy. This was his response:
"Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill are the Triangle. Often called the 'Research Triangle' due to the large amount of corporations (IBM and others) located in the area. The Triad or Piedmont Triad is Greensboro, High Point, and Winston Salem."
I hope that wasn't too confusing. Here's a video that's a little less confusing about triangles.
MONDAY, OCTOBER 20- 6:09 PM
Like the rest of you around the world, I was locked into my television set as Tampa Bay pitcher (and former Commodore) David Price entered a pressure-packed situation in game seven of the American League Championship Series Sunday night at Tropicana Field.
MONDAY, OCTOBER 13- 4:31 PM
Head coach Bobby Johnson announced Monday that junior quarterback Mackenzi Adams will likely make his first start of the season Saturday at No. 10 Georgia in place of senior Chris Nickson.
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 10- 11:49 PM
Before I get started on today's blog, we have officially arrived in Starkville for Saturday's matchup with the Bulldogs.
I went to Friday's walk through at Davis Wade Stadium and here are the pictures to prove it!!
VIEW GALLERY OF FRIDAY'S WALK THROUGH
Now, onto a blog on Myron Lewis
Growing up with four older brothers, junior cornerback Myron Lewis can remember the lessons he learned from his childhood football games in the backyard.
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 7- 3:28 PM
Oh, man. What a weekend. I can't say much more than what's already been said.
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 3- 11:57 PM
Following Friday afternoon's ESPN College GameDay taping at The Commons on campus, analyst Lee Corso wasted no time pointing out how great the turn out was by Commodore fans.
"I think at Georgia (last week) we may have had 15 or 20 people on Friday. I think it's the best Friday crowd we've ever had. It shows that the enthusiasm is here for football."
Count colleague Kirk Herbstreit as also being impressed.
"This was spectacular," remarked Herbstreit. "For them to turn out I think just shows the excitement they have for their team. This gives the Vanderbilt fans a chance to showcase their football program for the first time in a long time and let the nation know that Vanderbilt and Bobby Johnson are doing a great job."
The Commodore Nation took advantage of the opportunity by showing up in big numbers Friday to be a part of college football's most popular show.
After waiting over an hour for the crew to tape their first segment for SportsCenter, the students erupted when Corso hit the stage and proudly flashed the V-U hand signal from the Home Depot set. Herbstreit followed Corso a few minutes later to a chorus of jeers, due to the fact he left the No. 19 Commodores out of his AP Top 25 ballot earlier in the week.
The crowd did warm up to Kirk later when he joined Corso in the V-U chant. Chris Fowler also revved up the audience by thanking them for their support and asked everyone to keep the excitement going by returning to Saturday morning's show.
And if Friday's crowd was any indication about the excitement around the football program right now, then I'd expect a capacity crowd pumped with electricity for Saturday morning's show.
Being at the event Friday was definitely something I'll never forget and Saturday will be the same. So fans, do whatever you can to come out and show the world we are behind our University and our athletics teams. Gates will open at 7 a.m. CT with tapings starting at 8 a.m. The actual GameDay show will begin at 9 a.m. CT.
If you need directions on how to get to the show, click here.
Also, check out two photo galleries in case you were out of town and didn't get to join in on the hoopla:
1 - John Russell's Friday GameDay Photo Gallery
2 - Brandon Barca's Friday GameDay Photo Gallery
Finally, I grabbed some audio from Herbstreit's press conference including his take on the Commodores football team. Listen to Herbstreit Interview
See you on campus Saturday wearing black and gold!
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 3- 11:07 AM
The ESPN College GameDay show has officially set up shop at The Commons on campus!
I stopped by there yesterday afternoon to check it out. Here are a few pictures:
View GameDay Photo Gallery
Fans are encouraged to come by the set from 3:30-3:50 p.m. CT Friday and 8-11 a.m. Saturday. If you have any questions about the event (timeline, directions, parking, etc.), then Click Here for detailed instructions.
ESPN coming to West End isn't the only big news around here.
I was able to do something yesterday for the first time ever... attend a boxing press conference.
Did I have to go to Vegas to do it?
Nope, I just went down the McGugin stairwell to the Hendrix room to listen to super middleweights Jermain Taylor and Jeff Lacy talk about their bout, which will be televised live by HBO on Nov. 15 from Memorial Gym.
That's right, Memorial Gym.
The venue was decided on after Taylor's home arena in North Little Rock, Ark., was already booked for a Reba McEntire concert. Promoters say Nashville was a new and exciting place to bring an event of this stature.
And don't be fooled. This isn't some club fight between two over-the-hill boxers. Taylor (27-2-1, 17 KOs) is a former middleweight world champion while Lacy's (24-1, 17 KOs) only defeat came at the hands of one of the best fighters in the world in Joe Calzaghe.
The fight has been coined `All or Nothing'. The stakes are high with the winner guaranteed a WBC super middleweight title shot.
While I've never watched Lacy in the ring on television, I've seen Taylor several times and you're in for a treat. He doesn't shy away from getting hit and packs a powerful punch that would be great to see ringside.
When I first heard about the press conference, I imagined it was going to be an hour filled with verbal jabs between fighters with a high possibility of chairs being thrown during a melee (you know, the ones you see on ESPN).
The media event was nothing like that (foolish me). And actually, there didn't seem to be any animosity between the two fighters. They were even joking and smiling during the stare down.
To give you a little background, Taylor and Lacy were childhood friends and even represented the United States during the 2000 Olympics (Taylor won the bronze). The promoters downplayed the friendship and promised that even though the guys are close, that someone would be knocked out come fight night.
This will be a must-see event and will mark the first time HBO will televise a boxing card from Nashville. And it should be noted that former Vanderbilt football player Brad Gaines played a big role in bringing the match to campus.
There will also be fights on the undercard with Murfreesboro, Tenn., native Adam "Swamp Donkey" Richards taking on heavyweight Chazz Witherspoon. Also, former welterweight champion Kermit Cintron will be fighting Lovemore N'Dou.
Tickets will be on sale October 10 at all Ticketmaster locations. Prices range from $25-$275.
Here are some pictures from the press conference: View Boxing Photos
To close today's entry, I'll post another video.
Anybody who knows me knows that I am a huge fan of the Rocky movies. I'll even watch some of Rocky V if I come across it on WGN, so you know I gotta show a clip!
This part of Rocky IV always gets me fired up. ALWAYS.
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 1- 9:32 PM
Congratulations to former Commodore Jay Cutler for being named AFC Offensive Player of the Month for September.