FRAN THE FAN: Terrell Suggs deserves a new title

Street Talk FRAN THE FAN: Terrell Suggs deserves a new title

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News and Notes from a Fan’s Perspective


This and That 


Now that the Ravens season has come to an abrupt end, it’s time to catch up on some sports news both in and out of football.  So with tongue firmly planted in cheek (at least most of the time)……..


News Item:  Rex Ryan takes the Jets head coaching job.


Ryan’s opening statement at his press conference assured the assembled media that, in his capacity as Jets head coach, he expects to meet President Obama in the next few years.  Nice touch, Rex.  I watched the presser and it was a bravura performance by the son of a man who once announced his arrival in

with “You’ve got a winner in town.”  Well, Rex better be one in
East Rutherford.  For all the great copy he gave the

New York
press, if Ryan doesn’t produce they will take those comments, morph them into grenades, and lob them back in his face.


News Item:  Greg Mattison is promoted to Ravens defensive coordinator. 


Some concern has been raised over both the loss of Ryan and the appointment of a relative NFL newcomer to the position.  Maybe so.  But experience has shown that the loss of front-office personnel, coaches, and most players has been pretty seamless to the Ravens.  They find a way to survive.


The people who should be most concerned are those football club execs who continue to pluck talent out of the Ravens organization – both on the field and in the front office.  Consider Ed Hartwell, Anthony Weaver, Dwayne Starks, Gary Baxter, Mike Nolan, and Phil Savage, to name but a few.  For them, the record of post-Ravens success is less that stellar.  Which leads to this question:  Is it the player/coach or the system? 


For now, and until I’m proven wrong, I’ll take the latter.


News Item:  Michael Irvin and Terrell Owens are going to host separate reality shows. 


That’s Unreal, but so, so Cowboy.


Continuing News Item:  Cowboys owner and Chief Ringmaster Jerry Jones continues to state that Wade Phillips will remain his head coach into next year. 


I bet he wouldn’t have said that if John Gruden and Mike Shanahan were available at the end of the season.


Outrageous News Item:  The Charlotte Observer reported that the

Panthers are revoking PSLs from fans who didn’t buy playoff tickets.


Can you believe it?  It seems that as part of the standing agreement between the Panthers and people who buy permanent seat licenses, those Panthers season ticket holders are required to buy playoff tickets.  If they don’t, they’re out.  Letters started arriving last week via certified mail giving ticket holders the great news.  But don’t fear.  The club is offering PSL holders an opportunity to reinstate their accounts by paying a “reinstatement fee” which can easily run over a hundred dollars.


How do you like that, sports fans?  The economy is in the tank, thousands of jobs are being lost weekly, particularly in the Charlotte area where the banking industry is shredding jobs right and left, and the Panthers are requiring fans to pay for playoff tickets at severely inflated (read NFL) dollars.  The Panthers will gain tens of thousands more in reinstatement fees. 


And we thought Peter Angelos played financial hard ball.


Theatre of the Absurd News Item:  Terrell Suggs told a Sirius NFL radio audience that he, Ray Lewis, and Bart Scott should give the Ravens a “hometown discount” in order to stay together.


I can’t stop laughing long enough to type this.  If Suggs is serious and pulls this off, he has a fine career some day in a NFL front office.  In fact, I’d give him a personal services contract right now to work for the Ravens after he retires as “Director of Hometown Discounts.”


Baseball News Item:  The Orioles sign Nick Markakis to a long term contract. 


This was a no-brainer.  With our attention riveted on the Ravens this winter, it was easy for fans to overlook that Andy McPhail quietly stocked the club with young talent in the field.  With the addition of Felix Pie in left field and Cesar Izturis at short, the return of Adam Jones in center and Nick Mark in right, and the arrival of Matt Wieters at catcher by mid-season, the Birds will have some young, five-tool strength up the middle. 


What’s that other need?  Oh yeah, something called pitching.  Who remembers “Spahn and Sain and pray for rain?”


What rhymes with Guthrie? 


Media News Item:  We’re living in an alternate universe.  We really are.


Anita Marks gets a new contract with CBS Radio and Steve Davis gets fired from WBAL. 


Gary World News Item: 

gets blasted by Duke in the most lopsided loss in 45 years. 


For all the talk about who’s at fault, one thing stands out for me.  Gary Williams squandered the most precious gift a college basketball coach can receive:  A couple of Final 4 visits and a NCAA Championship.  That should have made

a top talent magnet for years. 

did nothing with it, recruited poorly, and the program has been stuck with marginal Division I talent ever since.  I don’t want to hear about ACC academics or loss of recruiters. 

North Carolina
and Duke don’t have this problem. 

has to go.


Full Disclosure:  I’m a pissed off



Super Bowl Pick:  The
Pittsburgh Steelers are 7 point favorites against the



Hines Ward will play on a sprained knee, Ben Roethlisberger will try to redeem himself from his lousy Super Bowl performance of 3 years ago, and the Cardinals are happy to be there (and, with a 9-7 regular season record, they should be).  While I continue to look for that Baltimore Cardinals sweatshirt I squirreled away 20 years ago, I’m looking for reasons to think the Cards have a chance. 


I can’t find them. 


They’ve already beaten 3 teams they shouldn’t have, and this Sunday their luck will run out.


I don’t think it’s going to be close.  With due respect for the Cardinal Karma, the Steelers will smoke ‘em and roast ‘em, 30-13.


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Fran "The Fan" Vojik

About Fran "The Fan" Vojik

Fran Vojik has been a contributor to the Ravens24X7 site since 2005, first as a regular on the “Letters to T.L.” page, then as the author of the Fran the Fan column. A huge Orioles and Ravens fan, he defines the term “homer.” A former season ticket holder of the Baltimore Colts, he now roots on the Ravens from his corner end zone seat in M&T Bank Stadium. His work makes him a regular traveler to various MLB and NFL cities and he’s watched both the Birds and Purple and Black in a variety of away stadiums. He brings a passionate and humorous perspective to the world of professional sports. Born in Highlandtown, and a graduate of Calvert Hall College and the University of Maryland, he lives on Furnace Creek in northern Anne Arundel County. He and his girlfriend, Sandy, have recently renovated his Man Cave, known as the “The Sports Palace,” which contains many mementos from the Colts, Ravens, and Orioles. On days the Ravens play at home, Fran can usually be found tailgating at the Baltimore Fire Fighters Union Hall Local 734 , supporting the organization’s Widow’s and Orphan’s fund.

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