Len’s Top 5 – October 28, 2014

1. Quick Hits

  • The San Francisco Giants can clinch the World Series tonight with a win in Kansas City.
  • Monday Night Football: Washington (3-5) beat Dallas (6-2) 20-17 in overtime snapping the Cowboys 6-game winning streak.
  • The Jets have named Michael Vick their starting quarterback.
  • The NBA season begins tonight with 3 games including the champion San Antonio Spurs hosting Dallas.
  • Another Florida State police investigation. Leading running back Karlos Williams allegedly assaulted his pregnant girlfriend.
  • It’s good to be king. Alabama football coach Nick Saban who makes $7-million a year had his $3-million house paid off by Crimson Tide boosters.
  • And in soccer news, Chivas USA based in Carson, California is shutting down operations.

2. Polling

Let the fun begin. The first of 7 college football polls will be released tonight. It all leads to December 7th when the 4 teams who will play for the college football championship will be announced. So too the bowl matchups. Here’s the good part. There are only two undefeated major teams, Mississippi State and Florida State. After that, there are 15 schools with one loss in the top 20. We’ll be hearing from all of their supporters over the next several weeks. Buy yourself a good pair of earplugs.

3. Sir Charles

Everything is not only black and white, it’s shades of black and white too. The story surfaced that some Seattle Seahawks didn’t think quarterback Russell Wilson was “black enough” whatever that means. Since I am no expert on “blackness” I’ll cede the floor to Charles Barkley. Here’s some of what he said: “It’s a dirty secret in the black community — unless you’re a thug or got a criminal record, or you’re just a jackass, some black people think you are not black enough. I want black kids to know we can be strong and intelligent. We shouldn’t tell kids, if you’re doing good in school, you’re acting white. If you speak intelligently, you’re acting white. That’s bulls—. It’s one reason we as a group are struggling, black people are struggling. We don’t have great respect for each other. One of the problems with our black community is us. I tell people, we’re the only group where if you got a criminal record, it makes you more black.”

4. Yay Me

If you think that all this over-the-top self-congratulations is purely an American sports phenomenon, think again. Zhang Jike of China won the World Cup of table tennis in Germany. His prize was $45,000. Then he went on his celebratory quest. You can see it at the end of this clip. His crime was damaging some advertising signs. His fine was his entire $45,000 prize money. He apologized. But that’s the ticket. The next genius who me-first celebrates in sports should get fined his paycheck. That’ll stop the nonsense.

5. Now This Word

Chevrolet pays soccer giant Manchester United over $75-million to sponsor their team. As an extra perk, Chevy sent over a fleet of 15 cars for the players to use. Yeah, right. These guys drive Mercedes, Porsches and Land Rovers. They’re not about to leave them home. The car company doesn’t mind. After all their logo is plastered on the Manchester jersey, in fact it’s bigger than the team logo. Isn’t that what really counts?

Happy Birthday: 1976 Olympic decathlon champion Bruce Jenner. 65.
Bonus Birthday: Bill Gates. 59.

Today in Sports: The Atlanta Braves win their only World Series. (Yes, the Braves also won in Milwaukee and Boston.) 1995.
Bonus Event: The Statue of Liberty was dedicated in New York Harbor. 1886.

Check out my newest project, The Best of Sports, at About.com

Need a gift for that young sports fan in your life? Check out my books. And if you’d like a personally autographed copy contact the Dolphin Bookshop at 516-767-2650.


Mashable Media Summit 2010: Tuesday June 8th

A day packed with powerful presentations and interviews, Mashable's Media Summit (in partnership with CNN) featured the intersection of social and digital media and lifestyle themes. Len spoke about his transition from old media to new media. Watch his presentation here!

To buy Len's newest book, The Greatest Moments in Sports - Upsets & Underdogs, visit:

Len's Book Signings/Appearances 2014:

The Greatest Moments in Sports - Upsets & Underdogs

    Munsey Park Elementary School, Manhasset, N.Y. Monday March 3. 5:30pm.

National Radio & TV Interviews:

  • NBC's Today Show "Spanning the World" Friday November 28th CONTACT LEN