Wednesday, December 26, 2012

New York Mess

BY SCOTT MORGANROTH

As if I needed another reason to detest New Yorkers, or New York Sports, the Tim Tebow debacle gave me another one.

Former Jets Hall of Fame QB, Joe Namath criticized management because he felt Tebow's acquisition was mainly to grab headlines in the New York tabloids. It's hard to debate Namath because the publicity stunt failed and New York has a 6-9 record going into their final game this weekend.

Coach Rex Ryan's tenure in "The Big Apple" will be tied to his underachieving team and could be labeled as a "Big Joke."

A year ago, he criticized his rival the New York Giants bragging that his team was the best in the city.

On December 24, 2011, the Giants lets their Actions Speak Louder Than Their Words hammering the Jets 29-14 as their playoff hopes crashed.

To make matters worse, the Giants won the Super Bowl in February.

How was Ryan going to improve the 2012 Jets? He acquired a QB that won an overtime playoff game against the Pittsburgh Steelers 29-23 on January 8, 2012. Tebow passed for 316 yards against the Steelers.

Tebow defeated Ryan on Thursday Nov 17, 2012 by a 17-13 score as the Broncos were making their playoff run.

When Ryan acquired Tebow during the off-season, he was secretive as to how he'd use him during the season. As it turns out, Rex didn't know how to use Tebow. Neither did former Miami Dolphins Head Coach Tony Sparano, the Jets new offensive coordinator.

Whether Ryan felt Tebow was the answer to the Jets offensive woes is only evidenced by the fact he didn't think Tebow was skilled enough as a signal caller as he thought.

To promote the third string quarterback ahead of the second guy on the depth chart as he did elevating Greg McElroy over Tebow, was disrespectful.

To give-up draft picks, pay millions of dollars for a "Wildcat QB" and "Punt Protector" was stupid!

There are two questions that I base life's lesson's on:

1) What if?
2) What could have been?

What did Ryan have to lose by starting Tebow the final two games of the season?

He would have had answers for next season as to whether Tebow could have played.

Denver fans learned that while Tebow's play was ugly, it did produce victories. It also gave a passionate fan base and created additional excitement for the Rocky Mountain Region. As I mentioned before, the Broncos earned a playoff win. It put fans in the stands and helped sell more team merchandise. Team owners like both.

While John Elway lived with Tebow Mania, he was determined to get rid of him for a more conventional pro-style type of signal caller. Elway demonstrated enough class to give Tebow options.

It didn't hurt that Elway did a great sales job to land future Hall of Fame QB Peyton Manning, who had a brilliant career with the Indianapolis Colts.

Elway and Coach John Fox did the right thing by Tebow. They made the best of the situation and moved on.

It appears as though that Ryan has made promises he couldn't and didn't keep.

When Ryan eventually gets fired, there will be plenty of opportunities behind the microphone either as a TV Analyst or Public Speaker.

Rex had a great chance with the Jets and simply blew it!

His Actions Never Spoke Louder Than His Words.

On Mike and Mike in the Morning, Hall of Fame Analyst Mike Ditka said it best.

He doesn't blame Tebow for being upset at Ryan and the Jets! He said that Tim should pack his bags and get out of New York ASAP because of the disrespect he had to deal with all-season long.

I couldn't agree with Ditka more since we're talking about a guy that has won championships when he was with the Dallas Cowboys and Chicago Bears.

Bullseye Coach Ditka!

Ditka gave Doug Flutie and Jim Harbaugh chances to play in the NFL.

They had solid careers and are doing well in their post NFL Lives.

Flutie is doing fine on television while Harbaugh started a successful coaching career in college that has carried over to the NFL. He's done an outstanding job with the San Francisco 49'ers, who are among the favorites to get to the Super Bowl.

I personally don't care about the apparent perception of how Tebow's time in New York is ending.

With the sensationalism associated with the New York Media, how much of this rhetoric is true?

I'm giving Tebow a mulligan!

Can Tebow be at least a solid QB in the NFL? Time will tell. But it won't be in New York!

Will he be the answer in Jacksonville? I don't know, but what I do know is he'll get a chance to compete for the starting job with a 2-13 team, which has only one way to go and that's up.

I do know that Tim will work and train very hard in the off-season to prove all his critics wrong.

For Jacksonville fans, that could be a blessing and potentially a financial benefit with all the attention, fans he'll put in that stadium as well as revenue attributed to merchandise sales.

Jacksonville is a strong football town waiting to happen as long as there is a good product on the field.

Everyone should be rooting for Tim because he has no off the field issues and hasn't made headlines for the wrong reasons like we've seen in recent weeks with the tragedies in Dallas and Kansas City.

I hope things work out for him in Jacksonville and every time he faces the Jets, Jacksonville either runs up the score or wins in the final minutes/ seconds.

This way the Jets organization can indeed face the questions, what if or what could have been?

Go ahead Tim, make Mike Ditka, Josh McDaniels who drafted you in Denver and I proud, while Namath looks like a genius because we know the real reason you were acquired.

It's hard to question Namath because in 1969, Broadway Joe led the franchise to their only championship.

Tebow will have a lot more people cheering for him because of his strong character and integrity. We'd all be crazy to root against a man with tremendous morals.

I know Commissioner Roger Goodell would embrace Tebow's success on and off the field.

Scott Morganroth can be reached at scottsports33@aol.com.

My Media Family



BY SCOTT MORGANROTH

Over the years, I've been very fortunate & proud to have worked with some Excellent Media Organizations.

The Detroit Monitor, Tampa Tribune, Hallandale Digest (South Florida), KCTK Radio (Phoenix, AZ), WXYZ Radio (Detroit), the Detroit Sports Broadcasters Association (DSBA), WKMT (Kings Mountain, NC) and RedsVue Magazine (Cincinnati, Ohio) standout.

I began My Association with the Deerfield Beach Observer in South Florida in 2007.

Former Editor Ric Green hired me to cover Florida Atlantic University (FAU) Sports focusing on Owls Football. This gave me the opportunity to reunite with My Good Friend Howard Schnellenberger.

Green and I were able to turn this seasonal relationship into a permanent one. When Green took a position to run the Pompano Beach Chamber of Commerce, FAU alumnus David Volz kept the beat going.

I am currently working with Diane Emeott-Korzen. (Pictured Right)

While the economy has cut back on the FAU stories due to reduced advertising, I'm very thankful Diane has continued her commitment  to covering the Owls. My stories are also seen on the Observer Online Website.

On December 21, 2012, the Deerfield Beach Observer had a Christmas Party Celebrating 50-years of Publication. It began in 1962.

What's amazing about the Observer's age is I will be celebrating My 50th Birthday on December 29, 2012. This is real neat that both of us turned 50 the same year.

Diane and Vice President Jim Lusk let everyone at the Christmas Party know of My Birthday Announcing it during the Gift Ceremony. They gave me a signed card by the office staff.

What made this more meaningful was The Party was the first one where My New Girlfriend Candy Ebling was in attendance. After hearing my name over the microphone, Candy's beautiful smile and brown eyes were indescribable.

It was neat to have a 50th Birthday Party with Candy alongside of me. You could say it was her coming out party.

Candy and I have proven that the Detroit Lions and Green Bay Packers can Co-Exist.

In this economy, the Deerfield Beach Observer has done an outstanding job working through their financial challenges to stay in business. Many daily and weekly newspapers have closed down.

Due to the leadership of Publisher David Eller, Lusk and Emeott-Korzen, along with the rest of the staff, they've done an incredible job!

These are the same people that sent me cards and made phone calls when I had major back surgery in June of 2009. Green was always in communication with me then and we remain close friends now.

Nowadays, Deerfield Beach sports are known for the accomplishments of Denard Robinson, the electrifying QB of the Michigan Wolverines. There is no question that Deerfield Beach High School can be proud of his collegiate and accomplishments.

Just like I can say that thanks to the Observer, I've been proud to have covered The New Orleans Bowl, Motor City Bowl, went to Gator Nation and watch FAU face Florida in Gainesville, had one more game at the Orange Bowl, covered an FAU Basketball Game against the University of Kentucky at Rupp Arena in Lexington, in addition to the Orange Bowl Basketball Classic. Also, the opening of the New On-Campus FAU Football Stadium was memorable.

As time and circumstances change, I will continue writing for the Observer as long as I can and they want me.

Diane and I are both from Michigan therefore, we both have that Special Connection and Bond.

Every year she wants her Super Bowl Story in February and I'm glad to give it to her even if she has to extend the deadline by 24 hours.

But on this night as I sat at a table with Candy, Assistant Editor Rachel Galvin, who is an MVP Behind The Scenes, and Movie Writer Dave Montalbano, who is a great friend, this night was indeed a celebration.

What's made my relationship so special with the Observer is not only do they care about me as a person, but do an excellent job editing my copy. Even thought Rachel said there isn't much editing, it's still nice to have that spare set of eyes, even though I read it several times before submitting it.

In general, the editing is fantastic for this newspaper and the entire production staff does an outstanding job every week.

While I hope I can write additional stories again in the future if advertising increases, I'm quite satisfied with the role that I have and being a part of the Deerfield Beach Observer.

Even though the faces change at the Christmas Party every year, this event is a great way to positively wrap up the calender.

Although the Observer is a weekly that is available to 30,000 readers in homes and businesses throughout Northeast Broward and Southern Palm Beach Counties, they could easily be viewed as a daily with their tremendous effort and professionalism.

I'm extremely proud to be the same age "50" and am pleased to be working with a Class Organization "My Media Family."

Scott Morganroth can be reached at scottsports33@aol.com.

Rivalry Waiting To Develop


BY SCOTT MORGANROTH

There are different rivalries on I-95 since the Interstate extends from Florida all the way to Maine.

These rivalries have long histories in all sports.

But one match-up is very intriguing in the State of Florida.

It involves two cities which are five hours apart and have hosted Super Bowl Games.

It involves two of the most veteran and personable Public Relations staffs in the NFL. It would be hard to find a pair of nicer guys than Harvey Greene of the Miami Dolphins and Dan Edwards of the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Although these two guys won't be issuing post-season credentials for the upcoming playoffs, they'll have plenty to do during the off-season as each of their rosters figure to have plenty of new faces.

Going into their Dec 16, 2012 contest, these teams had met only five times. Jacksonville led the series 3-2.

The most meaningful game occurred on January 15, 2000 as Dolphins Hall of Fame QB Dan Marino played his last game in Jacksonville.

The Jaguars crushed Miami 62-7 and sent Marino into retirement Ringless after the Devastation of this Playoff Game. Dolphins Coach Jimmy Johnson returned to Fox Sports as an analyst for the pre-game show where he's been since.

On this Dec 16, 2012 day, the Dolphins honored former Defensive Coordinator Bill Arnsparger by putting him into their Ring of Honor. They also celebrated the 40th Anniversary of the 1972 Undefeated 17-0 Team.

As for the game, Miami was mathematically alive for the playoffs. The Dolphins have a bright young QB in rookie Ryan Tannehill, who faced last year's Miami starter Chad Henne.

Miami would win this game as Tannehill was 22-28-220 yards and two touchdowns. He had a QB rating of 123.2. Meanwhile, Henne's return trip to Joe Robbie Stadium saw him go 18-34-221 yards in a 24-3 loss evening the all-time series at 3-3.

Time of possession was the story of this game as Miami dominated 35:38-24:22.

Henne downplayed his return to South Florida and said it didn't affect his play.

"It was a fun experience but obviously you want to come out with a win," Henne said. "I thought our guys fought hard and they played well on the other side of the ball. Their offense moved the ball and our third quarter was the biggest problem. Overall, it was a good atmosphere.

"My attitude right now is to prove to the Jaguars that I'm going to do the best I can to help this team win."

Jaguars Coach Mike Mularkey said he has the utmost respect for Henne.

"He is as much of a competitor that I've ever been around," Mularkey said. "He's scrappy and fights his tail off to give us a chance. We knew we were going to have a fight up front with our line and their defensive line.  For the most part, we held up as well as we could. There was pressure in front.

"We had chances to make plays. We didn't. We had some drops and a number of drives were stalled."

The Jaguars currently stand at 2-13 and have set a franchise record for most losses. Although Miami is now out of the playoff hunt, the Dolphins have a 7-8 mark, but are on the right track.

A crowd of 53,667 showed up for this Florida match-up and paid tribute to the tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut.

During the past few days, there is news that Jaguars Owner Shahid Khan wants former Florida Gators Heisman Trophy Winning QB Tim Tebow.

It appears as though Tebow could be returning home in 2013 since he said he wants out of New York after being surpassed by Greg McElroy as the new Jets starting QB.

If Tebow returns to Jacksonville, it's obvious he'll put fans in the stands, generate merchandise revenue and add energy to a franchise which desperately needs it.

The Pakistani-born American Billionaire Businessman Khan knows the value of his franchise will increase. In addition to the fact that the Jaguars will be playing future home games in London, England., this figures to generate an International Fan Base for the Jaguars.

I have a feeling that my good friend Edwards will have less free time on his hands when the "Tebow Circus" comes to town.

Meanwhile, between Tebow and the high pick Jacksonville will receive in 2013 NFL Draft, perhaps things will look brighter for the franchise in North Florida.

It would be great to see this rivalry become what it can become. All it needs is some star power, wins, playoff appearances in a state that has won only three Super Bowls, but has hosted many.

There is no reason that crowds of 70,000 shouldn't become common.

I have covered sporting events in many towns that have only one team and the atmospheres have been passionate, rabid and enjoyable.

There is no reason that Jacksonville can't follow suit, just as Miami did in the 1970's and 1980's playing at the Orange Bowl then moving to Joe Robbie Stadium.

Scott Morganroth can be reached at scottsports33@aol.com.


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