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Old 08-26-2009, 11:39 PM   #1
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Default Talk about some costly mistakes

Talk about some costly mistakes
Thursday, August 27, 2009
By Gene Collier, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

From the available satellite photography and myriad other sources, the new Cowboys Stadium appears as though it could double as the spacecraft in the new film "District 9", which concerns itself most urgently with alien relocation.

Not sure that alien relocation is what's going on in Texas as a general condition, but they are in one sense relocating a certain previously alien species of football fan, specifically the kind of fan that is willing to enter an $800,000 luxury suite and then (and only then) pay $90 for a cheese pizza.

That's right, cheese. No toppings.

What, they can't afford toppings?

Give 'em mushrooms for an additional $22.

Among all the snarky possibilities of a classical snarkfest of a summer, none are so fertile in the area of smug proletariat enjoyment as what has become of the new Yankee Stadium, a $1.5 billion edifice that can't hold the baseball, and now to Cowboys Stadium, a $1.2 billion vulgarity with a $40 million center-hung display board that blocks punts.

I know, for $40 million, it should not only be blocking punts, it should be dating Jessica Simpson.

So has that Cash for Clunkers program finally expired, or are Jerry Jones and the Steinbrenners not too late?

Jones' problem is fully of his own making, as football has thrived in America for more than a century without anyone suspending a 160-by-71-foot potential obstruction directly over the playing surface, as Jones has in Dallas. But the need for such a video monolith is really quite instructive when you think about it. Here is a $1.2 billion stadium, presumably with optimal viewing for the live action to which it owes its existence, that somehow needs a mammoth high-def video display of the same action just to keep its $90 pizza-eating audience fully entertained in lieu of mushrooms.

Don't tell me it's not a great country.

In 2009 apparently, if it is not happening in high def, it is not really happening.

In fairness, Jones and his organization had done the required research, using lasers to depict and calculate the varying arcs of various kicked pig bladders and deciding to hang the world's largest four-sided LED board right there 90 feet above the playing field. The NFL, even though no such potential impediment exists elsewhere, somehow has a rule that 85 feet is the minimum.

Oops.

Enter one A.J. Trapasso, free-agent punter, Tennessee Titans.

A.J. stepped into one in the Cowboys' first home preseason game and clunked it off what was called "the undercarriage" of the giant LED board. The undercarriage? Did they get the rustproofing?

Jones immediately said that such a thing would never happen in a regular-season game, I guess because, as we all know, regular-season punts never achieve the altitude of preseason punts, especially from free agents.

Incredibly, Jones got an official Cowboys corporate communications whiz to back him up on that.

"We believe in a competitive game," said Brett Daniels, "the height of the board will not be a factor."

OK, I'll stop rolling my eyes if you will.

The Dallas Morning News, God bless 'em, called up two physicists to calculate the likelihood of the Trapasso punt stunt happening on or after Sept. 20, when the Cowboys open the home schedule against the New York Giants. The first physicist said not likely, the second said likely often. These guys should have been economists.

Meanwhile, at least two members of the NFL competition committee, Titans coach Jeff Fisher and Indianapolis Colts president Bill Polian, think the giant display board should be moved.

I'm sure Jones would love to have both those guys down to help him move it. It weighs 85 tons.

Jones then told a Dallas radio station that, "it's not a new deal for kickers to adjust to the conditions they're playing in."

Those are natural conditions Jerry. Not partly cloudy with winds out of the southwest and a 100 percent chance of an 85-ton video board.

There is, it seems, far less culpability when it comes to the Yankees, the corporation that brought you the first $200 million player payroll and the first $2,500 box seat.

No one appears to be able to say definitively why the new Yankee Stadium is yielding more homers than any venue in baseball and at a rate about 50 percent higher than the old Yankee Stadium. The 3.14 homers per game that exit the yard there according to Hit Tracker.com are nearly twice as many as leave Progressive Field in Cleveland. Some social scientists have pointed out that this discrepancy exists largely because Yankee Stadium houses the Yankees while Progressive Field has the Indians, which is apt, but there is more at work.

No less an authority than His Holiness himself, by which I mean Peter Gammons, has reported that players call the new yard in the Bronx the biggest joke in baseball, which I'm guessing still includes the Pirates.

Accuweather claims the blizzard of homers is related to the curvature of the right-field wall (the direction in which most of the increase has occurred) and the height of it as wall.

Pitchers have claimed the existence of a jet-stream effect, which appears to have gathered some credibility with the revelation that the right-field line is on more of a direct east-west line than the previous one, and that weather systems are therefore carrying the ball farther.

In any event, it's just disappointing to see people spend most of $3 billion on two playpens and not get exactly what they want.

Heartbreaking, really.
Gene Collier can be reached at gcollier@post-gazette.com. More articles by this author

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/09239...#ixzz0PLKCXwJU

("In fairness, Jones and his organization had done the required research, using lasers to depict and calculate the varying arcs of various kicked pig bladders and deciding to hang the world's largest four-sided LED board right there 90 feet above the playing field. " Lasers!!!???? A laser beam travels in a straight line. How the hell would you use a laser to represent an arcing football? - mesa)
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Old 08-26-2009, 11:49 PM   #2
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Default Re: Talk about some costly mistakes

$90.00 for a cheese pizza!!! No pizza is worth that especially since I can get the best pizza in the United States, according the NY Times food critic and the Food Network, right here in Phoenix Arizona at Pizzeria Bianco.

The pizza's are truly fabulous and cost no more than $20.00. By the way should you doubt that Pizzeria Bicano is the best pizza in the United States, Pizzeria Bicano is the only pizza place ever to win the prestigious James Beard award. See link.
http://www.nytimes.com/2004/07/07/di...h-phoenix.html
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Old 08-27-2009, 12:05 AM   #3
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Default Re: Talk about some costly mistakes

In all honesty, and this is coming from an avid Cowboys hater, if JJ followed NFL rules/guidelines and put that huge television set at 85 feet or higher, it shouldn't have to be moved.

And if the NFL says move it, then the NFL should have to pay the $2M it would cost to do so.

In all honesty, I think Fischer told Trapasso to hit it in the game to make it an issue. He is the co-chair of the competition committee and I bet he wanted to make it an issue.

Seriously, do NFL punts reach 85 feet in the air? That seems awfully high for a punt that you want to go as far as possible.

Okay, I am now going to shower with a brillo pad to clean myself after defending Jerry Jones.
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Old 08-27-2009, 09:13 AM   #4
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Default Re: Talk about some costly mistakes

85 ton video board?

Well, THAT'S now a terrorist target...
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Old 08-27-2009, 03:36 PM   #5
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Default Re: Talk about some costly mistakes

It'll get moved...

The first time the Cowboy's punter bangs one off the screen and it comes back down around the 30 yard line, and the Skins take the next three snaps and score to win the game.

It'll be moved REAL fast.
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Old 08-27-2009, 04:05 PM   #6
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Default Re: Talk about some costly mistakes

Quote:
Originally Posted by RoethlisBURGHer View Post
Seriously, do NFL punts reach 85 feet in the air? That seems awfully high for a punt that you want to go as far as possible.
Sounds about right. If you kicked the ball at a 45-degree angle, which the laws of physics say is how you'd get the most distance, the ball would go half as high as it travels horizontally. On a 45-yard punt (also accounting for the 15 yards behind the line that the punter stands), that would be 180 feet horizontally and 90 feet vertically. On a 60-yard punt, it would be more like 225 feet horizontally and 112 feet high (This assumes, of course, that the distance is all covered in the air, not because of a bounce-and-roll).

Plus, when you're punting, you're not always trying to kick the ball as far as you can. Sometimes you purposely kick it straight up in the air so your coverage team can run under it and down it, so there's that to contend with too.

Anyway, it seems like the scoreboard is right in the trouble spot.
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Old 08-27-2009, 06:04 PM   #7
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Default Re: Talk about some costly mistakes

The Cowboys were ruined as a glorification to Jones' massive ego.
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Old 08-27-2009, 08:04 PM   #8
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Default Re: Talk about some costly mistakes

Quote:
Originally Posted by mesaSteeler View Post
Those are natural conditions Jerry. Not partly cloudy with winds out of the southwest and a 100 percent chance of an 85-ton video board.
Wow, this guy was tearing them a new one.
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Old 08-28-2009, 05:37 AM   #9
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Default Re: Talk about some costly mistakes

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The Cowboys were ruined as a glorification to Jones' massive ego.

I can think of another team that suffers the same fate.
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Old 08-28-2009, 07:47 AM   #10
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I can think of another team that suffers the same fate.
*Also, see Oakland Raiders.
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