Marshawn link; Mariners lineup; Kitsap’s Umpqua connection rolling

A Marshawn Kind of Way: This is an intriguing profile of Beast Mode. Lynch didn’t agree to an interview following the Seattle Seahawks win over the Eagles on Sunday, but MMQB writer Robert Klemko does a pretty good job of telling Marshawn’s story from people who know him and understand him. .

“He’s an introvert, but he doesn’t want to conform,” says former Seattle quarterback Matt Hasselbeck. “What made Seattle perfect, and allowed him to flourish, was the fact that Pete Carroll never made him conform. Pete never gave him a dress code. Him talking to the media was not treated like part of the main thing. It’s a set of rules somebody at Park Avenue came up with, and they mean nothing to him.”

“The best teammate I’ve ever had,” said Seattle linebacker Malcomb Smith.

“There are days when I don’t feel like dealing with media,” says Ravens wide receiver Steve Smith, a friend of Lynch’s. “People think he’s hiding something because he doesn’t want to talk. He does his job and does it well, and he’s not interested in other things. There are people who use the media to give false perceptions of who they are. He’s not interested in any of that. He just wants to ball.”

Mariners Lineup

Would you be happy if the Seattle Mariners 2015 Opening Day lineup looked something like this?

1. Austin Jackson, CF

2. Melky Cabrera or Alex Rios, RF

3. Robinson Cano, 2B

4. Nelson Cruz, DH

5. Kyle Seager, 3B

6. Logan Morrison, 1B

7. Dustin Ackley, LF

8. Mike Zunino, C

9. Chris Taylor or Brad Miller, SS

Felix Hernandez, P

Everything’s in place except for the No. 2 spot in the batting order. The Mariners are believed to be the front-runners to sign Cabrera, who is coming off a year in which he hit .301 with 16 home runs and an .808 OPS for Toronto. The switch-hitter seems like an ideal  fit. The M’s are also believed to have targeted Alex Rios, who hit .280 with a .709 OPS for Texas last year. Either would be a significant upgrade, although I’m still intrigued about the upside of James Jones. He stole 27 bases in 108 games a year ago and we saw the excitement he brings to the game when he’s putting the ball in play.

Maybe the M’s will pull the trigger on a blockbuster trade and wind up with Matt Kemp or Justin Upton? Lookout Landing takes a look at which player would provide you with the best value going forward.

Lighting it up for Umpqua

Umpqua Community College’s Ashli Payne (so., Olympic High) had 35 points and 10 rebounds, and Sawyer Kluge (fr., Bremerton) added 16 points and seven rebounds in a 69-63 win over Lane in the championship game of the Bellevue College Bulldog Classic this weekend. Kluge had 31 points and eight rebounds against Big Bend; Payne went for 22 points, nine rebounds and six assists in that game. Umpqua, second at the NWAC Championships a year ago, is off to a 6-0 start. Payne’s averaging 19.2 points and 8.3 rebounds; Kluge 16.3 and 5.3.

NWAC: So far so good for OC Rangers basketball teams

It’s one thing to think you’re going to be better, but it’s another to prove it.

So far, the Olympic College basketball teams are living up to their preseason expectations. Both Northwest Athletic Conference squads are coming off fourth-place finishes at holiday tournaments.

The OC men (3-1) have already won more games than they did a year ago when they finished 2-22 in the NWAC. The Rangers’ only loss was to 4-0 Lower Columbia at the Red Devils’ Thanksgiving Tournament. OC came back to beat Southwest Oregon and Yakima.

And the OC women (3-1) look like they must might challenge for an NWAC North Region playoff berth after going 0-24 and 6-18 the past two seasons.

Yeah, it’s early, but it looks like both teams will be playing meaningful games when the conference season begins in January. Stop by cozy Student Center Gym to get a close-up look. It’s a great place to watch a college basketball game, especially when the place is packed, which hasn’t happened in recent years.

The women are at Tacoma on Thursday, Dec. 4. The team is getting balanced scoring. Sophomore Mariah Frazier was an all-tournament pick at the Clackamas Thanksgiving Tournament where the Rangers were 2-1. They won wins over Clackamas and Mt. Hood, so  Frazier is averaging 11.0 points and a team-high 8.0 rebounds. Amanda Carper of Kingston (13.0) and Macy Walker of Port Angeles (11.3) lead the Rangers in scoring.

Tacoma’s Brian Neal is averaging 18.6 points and point-guard Gavin Peppers from Washington D.C. is averaging 17.5 points, 6.5 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 2.8 steals for the men, who host Tacoma on Friday. Louisiana’s Cortavious Williams, the only sophomore suiting up at the moment, averages 10.6 points and a team-high 8.0 rebounds.

Also

Peninsula College’s Ryley Callaghan, freshman from South Kitsap, made the all-tournament team at the Skagit Valley tournament over the weekend. Callaghan is averaging 25.8 points after four games with a high of 33 for the Pirates. … Sawyer Kluge, freshman from Bremerton, scored 23 points off the bench in her last game for Umpqua CC (Roseburg, Ore.) and averaged 16 point in her first three games while playing just 20 minutes a game. Ashli Payne, freshman from Olympic High, averages 14.0 points and 7.3 rebounds for Umpqua.

 

Williams out of lineup for Hornets

Bremerton’s Marvin Williams, starting power forward for the Charlotte Hornets, missed Friday’s loss against Golden State because of a strained shoulder. He injured it in the first half of Wednesday’s loss against Portland.

Williams has been playing with a nagging knee injury, the Hornets said earlier this month.

The 6-foot-9 Williams is averaging 6.3 points, 3.1 rebounds and 24 minutes a game for the Hornets. He started Charlotte’s first 16 games. He’s also expected to miss Saturday’s game at Atlanta.

Charlotte is off to a disappointing 4-13 start.

Sherman, Baldwin mock the NFL

Richard Sherman and Doug Baldwin mocked the NFL’s player policies and took the league to task for making players play two games in five days during a skit on Tuesday.

The Stanford guys came to the defense of Seattle Seahawks’ teammate Marshawn Lynch, who was fined $100,000 for not talking to the media.

The two didn’t take any questions after their performance.

Well, done gentlemen. That was pretty creative.

It’ll be interesting to see what kind of play this story gets in the national media. Will the No Fun League fine the two Seahawks?

 

 

Get ready for a Thanksgiving treat: Hawks vs. Niners

Thanksgiving might be my favorite day of the year, and the NFL made it even better this year.

They added a third NFL game to the schedule this season and it turned out to be the Seahawks vs. the 49ers. The Thursday game starts at 5:30 p.m. and will be televised by NBC.

There’s a lot on the line as both teams — the NFC West preseason favorites — are 7-4 and two games back of the Cardinals.

The Seahawks’ defense dominated the Cardinals, 19-3, on Sunday, and San Francisco is coming off a hard-earned 17-13 win over the Redskins.

Neither team has been scary on offense, but the defenses are as good as ever. Seattle’s coming off its best defensive effort of the season at just the right time. San Francisco got to RGIII for five sacks on Sunday, and Russell Wilson was sacked seven times by the Cardinals.

We all remember what happened the last time the Niners and Hawks met. It was the NFC West championship game a year ago at Century Link and it was an emotional game with the momentum swinging back and forth.

I might have to dial it up and watch it again to get ready for Sunday’s Thanksgiving Day matchup.

The game came down to the final possession. San Francisco was driving and looking for the go-ahead touchdown. Richard Sherman came up with the game-saving play, tipping away a pass in the end zone that was intended for Michael Crabtree, and Malcolm Smith came up with the interception. Victory Seahawks, 23-17.

Sherman gave Crabtree a little slap, then tossed in the choke sign for good measure before he went off on Erin Andrews in the that memorable post-game interview.

Here’s Thursday’s schedule, which also includes a couple of college games:

Chicago at Detroit, 9:30 a.m., CBS

Philadelphia at Dallas, 1:30 p.m., FOX

No. 5 TCU at Texas, 4:30 p.m., FOX

LSU at Texas A&M, 4:30 p.m., ESPN

Seattle at San Francisco, 5:30 p.m., NBC

 

What some are tweeting after Husky loss

Chris Petersen’s Mike Leach-like decision to not take a knee late in the game against Arizona is creating quite a post-game stir.  Here are a few tweets following the Huskies’ 27-26 loss:

Jim Moore @cougsgo · 50m 50 minutes ago
So it was a purple-and-gold version of the New Mexico Bowl. Wow. Hard to believe once, but twice? These guys make $3 million a year.

Dave Softy Mahler ‏@Softykjr 3m3 minutes ago Bellevue, WANo legit reason whatsoever for Petersen to not take a knee at end of game. Whatever his play chart says. burn it, How can you justify that?

Aaron Levine ‏@AaronQ13Fox 13m13 minutes ago

“@A_Jude: Chris Petersen said UW’s “chart” dictated that the Huskies needed another first down with 1:30ish left.” Hahaha. A chart!

Aaron Levine ‏@AaronQ13Fox 7m7 minutes ago
I’ll be first to admit I don’t know more about football than Chris Petersen does on his pinky. But I can do basic math most of the time.

John Blanchette ‏@JPBlanchette 25m25 minutes ago
He might even do his radio show RT @cougsgo: Just guessing, but I’ll bet Chris Petersen will at least take responsibility for his screw-up.

Jim Moore ‏@cougsgo 23m23 minutes ago
@JPBlanchette Always be a good sport, be a good sport ALL WAYS… unless you forget to take 3 knees, that is. #GoCougs

Steve Sandmeyer ‏@SteveSandmeyer 27m27 minutes ago
On the Cooper fumble, UW snapped the ball on first down with 1:33 left. Arizona had one timeout. 40 second play clock. Do the math.

Percy Allen ‏@percyallen 35m35 minutes ago
Rick Neuheisel says “it’s unforgivable as a coaching staff” for UW to mismanage last minutes. No need to run a play with 2:08 left.

Vince Dice ‏@Vince_Dice 60m60 minutes ago
I’m not a Husky fan, but good lord do I feel sorry for people who are. @davnelson @a_binion

David Nelson ‏@davnelson 52m52 minutes ago
@Vince_Dice @a_binion Feeling a little Cougish right now, actually. (How’s that as a coping mechanism?)

Ed Friedrich ‏@efriedrich 45m45 minutes ago
@davnelson @Vince_Dice @a_binion They had every right to lose that.

Steve Sandmeyer ‏@SteveSandmeyer 1m1 minute agoAnd just to make clear, anyone who thinks Petersen should be fired or was the wrong choice is brain dead. He had a bad game. He’ll own it.

Chris Daniels retweeted
Christian Caple ‏@ChristianCaple 14m14 minutes ago
If UW kneels on 1st down, UA likely calls TO with 1:30 left. That gives Huskies 90 seconds to kill with two plays/80 seconds of play clock.

 

 

Bill Simmons: Seahawks’ 12th Man MIA; Cardinals now have best home crowd

Bill Simmons of grantland.com isn’t sold on quarterback Russell Wilson, and he pretty much dissed the Seattle Seahawks crowd in this column. He might be right. What do you think?

Here’s his take on the 12th Man:

That’s right, Seattle. You know I love your city and you know I hate how OKC stole the Sonics from you. But save for opening night, your crowds have sucked this season. Peyton Manning went 80 yards in like three seconds to force OT on you. You lost to Dallas at home. You couldn’t blow out the lowly Raiders last week, for God’s sake. Are you suffering from Pink Hat Syndrome (a.k.a. too many bandwagon fans)? Are you taking this stuff for granted now? What’s up? You’re like the husband who marries his dream girl and immediately stops working out and puts on 25 pounds. Get back on the treadmill. “The 12th Man” used to mean something.

Oh, and by the way, Arizona took your “Best Crowd in the League” corner. The Cardinals fans just swooped right in and stole it from you. You’re Avon, they’re Marlo. That’s a fact. Do you care? Do you care at all? NOW GO OUT THERE ON SUNDAY AND BE THE CROWD I KNOW YOU CAN BE!

The column started with his take on quarterbacks who have won a Super Bowl in this century. This is what he had to say about Wilson:

It’s too early to have an opinion on Russell Wilson’s Super Bowl, but the “Luck or Wilson?” debate finished filming in October. (Spoiler alert: Luck won.) Is Wilson an infinitely more athletic Brad Johnson? Is his 2014 performance suffering because his offensive line collapsed and he doesn’t have enough weapons (and not because we overrated him)? Or, could you say he’s where Brady was in 2002 — one year away from jumping a level, and three years away from jumping two levels, and five years away from finishing the video game? To be continued.

Collegians: Flora back for senior year at Seattle U

BASKETBALL

Jarell Flora (sr., Bremerton) figures to play a key role for Seattle University, which was picked to finish third by the media in the Western Athletic Conference preseason poll. WAC coaches tabbed the Redhawks to finish second. Flora, a 6-3 guard, averaged 9.5 points and 3.2 assists a year ago, starting 25 of the 30 games he played in. The former Olympic League MVP and his teammates open the season Friday, Nov. 14, against Texas State at KeyArena. SU plays cross-town rival Washington on Nov. 21 at KeyArena.

Jalen Carpenter (jr., Bremerton) is a returning starter for Weber State. The 6-1 Carpenter averaged 8.7 points and 5.7 rebounds for the Big Sky Conference school a year ago and has started 43 games in two seasons.

Krista Stabler (jr., Central Kitsap), a 5-6 guard, will be a team captain for the Saints this season. She averaged 3.2 points a year ago with a high of 16.

Brittany Gray (sr., Bainbridge/Skagit Valley) and Sadee Jones (sr., North Mason) are returning starters at Evergreen State. Gray, a 5-9 forward, earned Cascade Collegiate Conference honorable mention all-league honors a year ago after averaging 13.5 points and 8.7 rebounds. Jones, a 5-8 forward, averaged 10.5 points and 6.5 rebounds for the Geoducks (14-12 in 2013-14).

Caulin Bakalarski (fr., South Kitsap) is a guard at Eastern Oregon. Bakalarski, a 6-3 wing, was an all-Narrows League pick a year ago.

Sophia Baetz (sr., Kingston/Skagit Valley) is a backup guard at Montana Tech in Butte, Montana. Baetz averaged 7.5 points as M-Tech won its first two games.

Kelsey Callaghan (sr., South Kitsap), a 5-3 guard, and 6-1 Breyenne Mosey (sr., King’s West) are back for their finals seasons at Western Montana in Dillon, Montana. Western Montana’s off to a 3-1 start. Callaghan and Mosey are both coming off the bench.

FOOTBALL

Kyle Lanoue (redshirt, so., Central Kitsap) is having a solid season for Eastern Oregon. The defensive tackle had tackles, two for a loss, and a sack in the Mountaineers 31-20 win over Montana Tech last week. Lanoue has 49 tackles, nine for losses, and is tied for the team lead with three sacks. Eastern Oregon (6-4, 5-3 Frontier) is No. 21 in the NAIA Coaches’ Poll and and hosts the College of Idaho on Nov. 8, and closes the regular season at Southern Oregon on Nov. 15. … Matt Stone (R-fr., Bainbridge) is a backup running back for the Mountaineers.

 BASEBALL

Jamestown University assistant coach Boya Quichocho, a South Kitsap grad, has established a pipeline of sorts to the NAIA school in Jamestown, North Dakota.

Quichocho, a standout infielder, played at Olympic College for two years and two more at Jamestown, where he earned honorable mention All-American honors and led the Jimmies in stolen bases both seasons.

Quichocho is in his ninth year as an assistant coach. Two former Olympic College pitchers — Chris Hackworth from Utay and Ferndale’s Kyle McKay — are also on the coaching staff.

Other current Wes Sounders on the 2015 roster: Adam Lemmon, freshman pitcher from North Kitsap; Tyler Ludlow, freshman first baseman from South Kitsap; Michael Nelson, junior first baseman/catcher from South Kitsap; Beau Rabideaux, freshman pitcher/infielder from Kingston; and Nick Torres, freshman pitcher/infielder from Bremerton.

SOFTBALL

Pitcher/outfielder Emma Keller (fr., North Kitsap) and infielder Kalea Chapman (jr., Douglas HS, Juneau, Alaska/Olympic College) are both playing at Jamestown University.

Kelsey Lucostic (jr., Big Sky HS, Missoula, Mont./Olympic College) is an infielder at the University of Montana, a first-year D1 program.

Greta Coleman (jr., Kingston/Shoreline College/Olympic College) is a utility player at Bloomfield College (New Jersey), an NCAA D2 school.

 

Linkage: Shaq, Maddon, Schilling, Couples, A-Rod & Bumgarner

Looking for some good stuff to read. Here’s a few links I’m passing along:

Washington Husky coach Chris Petersen says he’s never coached a player as good as Shaq Thompson. But this story at sportspressnw.com poses a legit question: Is Shaq a legitimate Heisman Trophy candidate?

From afar, it’s real easy to like Joe Maddon, the new manager of the Chicago Cubs. This story by Tim Brown of Yahoo! Sports gives you a little insight into the guy.

Never did get into dipping and chewing, but Curt Schilling did. Jackie MacMullan of ESPN.com writes the definitive story about Schilling’s addiction to the stuff and his battle with cancer.

Easy-going Fred Couples is the players choice to be the next Ryder Cup captain for the United States.

Alex Rodriguez reportedly paid off his cousin, to the tune of $900,000, to keep quiet about PEDs, according to this report in the New York Daily News.

Michael Powell of the New York Times spent some time in Madison Bumgarner’s hometown and his proud father’s home during the World Series.

Bainbridge’s Jonson, Warkentin WSGA Players of the Year

Carl Jonson of Bainbridge, currently a senior at UNLV, and Sam Warkentin, a Bainbridge High senior, are the Washington State Golf Association Players of the Year. Jonson was voted the men’s player of the year, and Warkentin was the junior boys player of the year.

Jonson had seven major top-25 finishes this past year.

Warkentin won the Pacific Northwest Junior Boys Champion and won the Washington State Junior Golf Association State Championship.

For more information, and a list of other winners, click here.