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Spring Has Sprung for Ball State Football

Lembo Bouquet

 

The old adage says April showers bring May flowers, and if those are the flowers that pop up in your garden come Derby Day then I’d imagine the Muncie police would like to have a chat with you. But one thing that has popped up in recent days is Spring Practice for the football Cards. Here’s what you need to know…

  • There’s a new motto selected by the leadership council: “Earn it today” which they have said deals with the urgency of performance and daily excellence. I like it. It’s not a retread and it doesn’t suck nearly as bad as IU’s Kevin Wilson brainchild of Win Today Tomorrow Eventually Sometime Maybe
  • The Spring Prospectus is out along with the first depth chart for the spring. You can check that little jewel out at Ball State Spring Prospectus.
  • The Cards have added a home game with Eastern Kentucky and a home and home with Florida Atlantic. That might have gotten lost in your shuffle of @ Notre Dame in 2018 and a Bloomington-Indy-Bloomington in ’18, ’19, and ’20. EKU shouldn’t be a surprise given that the Cards just stole their AD in Mark Sandy. Thank you card payday helps ease the pain I would imagine.
  • In sad and sucky news, running back Horactio Banks’ career with the Cards is over thanks to a stress fracture in his leg. Last season saw an ACL tear and now this, and I can’t say the running back position is going to be one that is anything close to cemented. Teddy Williamson is probably your odds on favorite but there is room for someone to step up.
  • Also no longer with the team is Kyle Kamman, walk on junior QB. After last season’s bumpy ride to find a starter and with Jack Milas lightly penciled in as QB1 for spring ball with Ozzie Mann and redshirt freshman David Morrison fighting for a chance. This also doesn’t include Riley Neal who will be there in the summer, so it’s safe to say that the opportunities for QB snaps is waning by the day. Good luck to Kyle wherever his path takes him.

Of major note is the gains in the weight room the Cards has made. Let the Voice of the Cardinals Joel Godett explain what we mean…

How Slingbox Saved My NCAA Tournament Experience

*This Post Sponsored by Slingbox*

There was a time when I would faithfully and dutifully take off the Thursday and Friday of the NCAA tournament each and every year. There were times I’d use sick leave and brand it as a “mental health day”, other times I’d just take vacation and revel in the gluttony of wall to wall basketball as somewhere between the pile of wings and frosty cold deliciousness day turned into night and upsets and buzzer beaters left me sated enough to get to bed just to do it all over again the next day.

Like most things in life, though, with evolution comes different priorities and demands and I was forced to make the difficult decision of completing some work projects with my team instead of watching my other team open their tournament play. I expected my first vacation-less tourney Thursday and Friday to be completely squandered. I just KNEW there was going to be something major that I was going to miss. Maybe a 16 would beat a 1. Maybe someone would drop a triple-double on an in-state rival. Maybe something cool would happen that I had no idea could even be a thing. And I was going to miss it all, swimming in a sea of employee performance reviews and paperwork. Enter the Slingbox player.

Slingbox1They say the best things come in small packages and though I am not sure who “they” are nor whether they were specifically talking about the Slingbox M1, but regardless of their intent, the outcome is the same. With this apparatus you are a slave to your set no longer. Have a computer? Have a tablet? Have a smartphone? Then you have access to anything you could watch at home with a Slingbox hooked into your entertainment set up. It really is as simple as that. Hook up your Slingbox to your television, connect it via wifi to your home network (or via ethernet cable if you have a wired option close) and you’re good to go. I sat in my office and watched whichever game I wanted on Thursday. Friday, too. Even changed the channel when the inevitable blowout began. Rather than wonder how I was going to watch the action I only needed to wonder how I was going to keep my boss none the wiser of why I selflessly gave up my Tourney Thursday and Tourney Friday for the betterment of the office. But hey, what he doesn’t know won’t hurt him, right?

Now, I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking there’s probably some astronomical monthly fee for this service or it’s a pain in the butt to setup or that it’s going to look hideous within your set up. I respect the last concern because I’m an OCD freak about clean lines and things not looking ridiculous in my home. Feast your eyes on the rack with the Slingbox in place…

Slingbox2

It is basically unnoticeable and smaller than my cable box. As for your other concerns, pay them no mind. It took less than 10 minutes to set up and there isn’t a fee for computer viewing. It’s worth noting that there is a fee ($15) for the mobile app to be able to view on your tablet or smartphone when you download the app, but it’s money well spent in my opinion. The beauty of this technology is that it lets you watch your home television stations on any device anywhere in the world. If you’re a sports fan it is must have technology and it is most definitely OTP recommended. The Slingbox can even schedule and view DVR recordings, it works with every cable company, and the quality is remarkable and up to full 1080p.

The most awesome thing? Slingbox is also running a current sweepstakes promotion called Madness Cubed. The details…

Slingbox is giving away the ultimate cubicle makeover so you can enjoy the NCAA’s March Madness tournament in style. We’ll come to your office and deliver a truly comfortable chair, your own Slingbox 500, and an epic party meal for you and your office mates. So enter today for a chance to win. PLUS 68 runners-up will win a Slingbox M1 to set themselves up for the big dance. Unbelievable!

How do you do that? By visiting the links above or clicking here. From that link you can also learn more about Slingbox and purchase one for yourself. It truly is amazing technology that in one cleanly designed package renders things like geographic constraint, travel, local blackouts, and competing schedules completely void. And that, sports fans, is a remarkably good thing.

Softball Opens Home Season with Doubleheader Sweep

Photo credit BSU Photo Services

Admittedly I’m not a softball expert,  but when you beat a team by a combined 27-6 over a doubleheader, that’s a pretty good home opener. The Cards beat IPFW 8-2 and then 19-4 to climb just one game under .500 at 12-13 for the season. IPFW drops to 0-20, but their mascot is the Mastadons so I feel like even when they lose, they kind of win. Not that the scoreboard, record, or final score would indicate that, but still.

Cards are back in action this weekend against Western Kentucky with a doubeheader on Saturday (1pm) and a single-game 1pm matinee on Sunday. Chirp chirp!

NCAAs Start Today, Won’t be as Good as 2001 Maui Classic

I guess if you beat a Top 5 team at the buzzer, you can take a breather.

I guess if you beat a Top 5 team at the buzzer, you can take a breather.

That is Patrick Jackson, or Petey as he was known to fellow students. He looks tired. He looks happy. I guess when you hit a buzzer beater to defeat Kansas (ranked #4) in the Maui Classic, I’d say both those emotions apply. But it wasn’t just Kansas. Their reward for beating #4 on national television? A date the next night with #3 UCLA, who the Cardinals promptly ran out of the gym with an 18-point beating. The Cards would go on to lose to #1 Duke in the championship game, but they would enter the next week at #16 in the associated press poll. So as you watch upsets unfold over the next few weeks in the NCAA tourney, just remember that BSU has been there done that on the national television stage. With any luck, Coach Whitford may get them there again.

OTPcast 6.25

OTP Cast Logo200Cheer cheer for old Ball State
Wake up the students it’s time for pregame
Send a Carter’s dog my way
Scotty’s for dinner would make my day
What though the odds be great or be small
We may not get the win but we’ll have a ball
While our loyal fans are marching
Onward to relevancy

Big news this week as Jason and Alan take you through the breaking news of BSU football’s 2018 contest at Notre Dame, the pending spring practice and Spring Game, and March Madness! It’s a shorter OTPcast than normal but equally as awesome.

Couple of different ways to hear this puppy. Viewing OTP in a feedreader? Then visit the site or download the mp3 from iTunes by clicking here. You can also check the OTPcast on your Android device via Stitcher Radio here. Leave us a rating if you like what you hear! Enjoy…

Get Your March Madness on the Right Way with Slingbox

* This post sponsored by Slingbox*

slingbox logoThe Monday after the tournament field is announced is always a day of terrible productivity. Oh sure, I’m working. Oh no, I’m not doing anything other than looking at who’s under-seeded, who’s over-seeded, and who’s going to inevitably bust my bracket as my admin assistant picks based on mascot fierceness or point guard hotness and thoroughly stomps my bracket out in the process.

The crummy thing is the first (or not, if you count the play-in games) two days of the tourney, which are now the second and third rounds of the tourney for some reason, happen at noon on Thursday and Friday. You’re trying to watch basketball and all your boss is doing is complaining about the office supplies missing from the cabinet or how listening to NWA full blast without headphones isn’t great for the office. But thankfully, there’s a solution for that.

Slingbox, in its most simple form, allows you to watch your tv from anywhere that you can connect via a network. Smartphone? Tablet? Laptop? Computer? No problem. Television at your fingertips. Or screentips. Whatever. Close your office door, tell your secretary you’re in a meeting, and giggle all the way to the bank. That’s what wins brackets.

And speaking of brackets, aside from jumping in sponsorship bed with your friendly neighborhood BSU bloggers here at the Pylon, Slingbox is giving away the ultimate cubicle makeover so you can enjoy the NCAA’s March Madness tournament in style. They’ll come to your office and deliver a truly comfortable chair, your own Slingbox 500, and an epic party meal for you and your office mates. So enter today for a chance to win. PLUS 68 runners-up will win a Slingbox M1 to set themselves up for the big dance. You can check that out here.

Zavier Turner to Transfer

Ball State HoopsWhen I worked in DC, the political crowd always dubbed Fridays as “Take out the trash day” because that was the afternoon that you saved all the stuff you didn’t want a lot of eyes on. The backlash for a Friday news story was far less than any other day, thanks largely to most people having a life and not caring what happened on Friday as they were done with their 4th rum runner and second all you could eat wings plate. Mmmmm…. wings. But I digress.

Ball State’s trash news today is that sophomore guard Zavier Turner and 2014 MAC Freshman of the Year is bidding adieu to the Muncie metro area and exploring transfer options. 8.7 points and 3.3 assists was Turner’s stat lines this season, which was a reduction from last season’s 12.1 points and 3.7 assists but let’s not forget the big Turner story this year: the mid-year suspension.

After the suspension the points per game dropped considerably and I’d say it’s safe to say that Turner wasn’t especially thrilled to be there given his reduced role, reduced production, and (for the team) the reduced results. Over the course of Turner’s suspension, the Cards shuffled everyone but the muffin man into the starting point guard role like a former walk on and shooting guards.

Coach Whitford had the cursory “We wish him well…” quote, which was nice. Good luck to Zavier and best wishes wherever he may end up. I hope it’s not Indiana. Though Tom Crean’s tongue kisses probably are polar opposite from Coach Whit’s approach.

Baseball Adjusts Weekend Schedule

Other StuffI’d say that without question the biggest thing in recent memory has been the weather. Planes were skidding off runways, interstates looked like zombie apocalypses, and I got chilled to the bone walking outside to get the Girl Scout cookies out of my truck. So the weather has been THE STORY lately. Leave it to weather to hog some more headlines.

Ball State baseball announced today that due to impending weather and field conditions they were adjusting this weekend’s series at Dayton. What was originally a four-game series Friday through Sunday is now a three-game tilt on just the weekend, with a doubleheader on Sunday at noon. The Cards’ Saturday contest starts at 3.

The weather sucks but warm weather is right around the corner. Get yourself in warm weather shape by catching some baseball right down the road in Dayton.

Watch Out: NCAAB March Madness Is About To Run Wild with Mybookie

NCAA LogoThe month of madness is just a few days away, and already we are sensing a most exciting season coming up. For those of you who do not know what the March Madness is all about – what a pity – it is the annual basketball tournament held every spring in the United States. Get to know the NCAAB March Madness Contest, it currently pits 68 college basketball teams against each other, and starts on the second week of March ending by the first week of April and Mybookie.ag is your window to it all.

Cream of the Crop
As in all annual tournaments, there are national favorite teams that dominate the playing field. For years, these teams have shown professional playing prowess and determination to win the game and take home the national pride:

UCLA Bruins
Founded in 1920, UCLA Bruins boasts of 11 Division I NCAA Championships, giving them the record of the most championships. Its unforgettable coach, John Wooden, won the team 10 national titles in just 12 seasons from 1964 to 1975. Right now, with its coach Steve Alford, we are yet to see if the Bruins still have what it takes to bring home the victory.

Kentucky Wildcats
One of the strongest college basketball teams we have is the Wildcats, proud of its record of most all-time wins (2167) and second to UCLA’s record of NCAA championships (8 titles). It holds the record of the most Sweet Sixteen appearances (40) and Elite Eight appearances (35). With its vast history of victory as well as prestige, will the Wildcats grab the championship this year?

Connecticut Huskies
The NCAA champion last year, the Uconn has in its sleeves four NCAA championships, seven Big East Tournament Championships, and ten Big East regular season titles. Uconn is the home of professional basketballs like Ray Allen. Kemba Walker, Jeremy Lamb, Richard Hamilton, and a lot more.

How the March Madness Bracket Works
The NCAAB March Madness works through a single-elimination system called the March Madness Bracket. First, thousands of teams undergo a selection process which comes up with a final list of 68 qualified teams. These 68 teams are then grouped into four regions ((East, South, Midwest, and West) and arranged in a single-elimination bracket system. The bracket system predetermines which team, upon winning the game, will face next.

Then each team is ranked, or most commonly termed as “seeded”, within its region. When the College Basketball Bracket is done, we now have lower-ranked teams and higher-ranked teams. The tournament advances by pitting lower-ranked teams against the higher-ranked ones, with three quarters of the teams eliminated every weekend. From Division level, the tournament advances to Regional and on to the National Level.

The game progresses as such until it reaches the last weekend of the Tournament of the Final Four. The final four teams, one from each region, face off in one location for the national championship. Here is where the most awaited moment happens.

Nothing beats the adrenaline rush we get from watching our favorite teams play in the field, and the extreme euphoria from seeing our team bag the title. Will your best bet make it to the championship? Do not miss out!

Sean Sellers Named MAC Freshman of the Year

Ball State HoopsBall State hoops fans have admittedly not had much to cheer about or celebrate during the rebuilding process being championed by Coach James Whitford, but it’s time to break out your celebratin’ shoes for an individual achievement. Cardinal Sean Sellers, fresh off yesterday being named to the All-Freshman Team on Monday, was named the conference’s Freshman of the Year by the media Tuesday morning.

It should have been an easy choice, considering his 12.0 points per game is tops among MAC rookies and his 43.7% 3-point shooting percentage is one of the nation’s best. He also finished fifth in season scoring for rookies in Ball State history, so he’s got that going for him too. Which is nice.

For those that doubt what Coach Whitford can do (or will do if you’re more into the whole forward-thinking thing), it’s the second consecutive season a Ball State freshman has been named the conference’s best. And before you try to indict the lack of results based on that fact, I’d say it speaks more to the dumpster fire that Coach Whitford took over rather than his inability to do the job. But, what do I know?

Congrats to Sean and Go Cards!

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