Blog Archives

#SavingTheCrew and U.S. Soccer

After a year of hell, the state of soccer in Columbus–and the United States–is back on track.

This time, when Crew fans chant that #HellIsReal, it’s a good thing.

We’re ready, FC Cincinnati.

Beginning this morning, reports were pouring in essentially stating the Columbus Crew–the original Black & Gold in MLS–will be #saved.

Actually, my mom tipped me off this morning via text while I was working on an unsuspecting Friday.

A mom who loves soccer and lives in Columbus? The best damn mom in the land! 

In a joint statement, the Columbus Partnership, Jimmy Haslam, and Dr. Pete Edwards, the Crews’ team doctor, stated: “While there are many details to be worked out, our alliance is working diligently and collaboratively with [MLS] to keep the Crew in its community. We are very excited about the quiet but deliberate progress that has been made to date and will keep the community updated as this process moves forward.”

-Jeff Carlisle, ESPN U.S. soccer correspondent

A rumored downtown stadium is also in the mix.

Major props to Ohio Attorney Mike DeWine and Columbus City Attorney Zach Klein for their legal work to #SaveTheCrew. And the major part–well, all of it–for this legal effort by Mr. DeWine and Mr. Klein is the Modell Law, which basically created a window for local investors to make a reasonable offer to keep the Crew in Columbus.

Quite poetic and perfect that the owner of the Cleveland Browns will be keeping the Crew in its hometown, isn’t it?

My favorite reaction today from a Cleveland Browns perspective is that Jimmy Haslam was thinking, “If I can’t find a good kicker, then I’ll just buy a professional soccer team.”

That was well played.

Deep down in my heart, I knew the Columbus Crew would somehow stay in Columbus. What did Joe Dirt say? “You can’t have no in your heart.” And now Columbus is reenergized to reclaim its rightful place as THE soccer capital of the United States, both on the pitch and in the stands (plus on Twitter).

After failing to qualify for the thrilling 2018 World Cup, the USMNT experienced an identity crisis, among other things. With the Crew staying in Columbus–the soccer capital of the United States–American soccer and the under-construction national team has a burgeoning identity rooted in the inspiring passion and relentless dedication of its fans.

Incredible.

The next step is revealing a sophisticated, creative and surprising tactical identity. That is still in the TBD-phase as the pursuit for a new head coach continues.

With the spotlight shining brightly on Columbus, the national media will now be forced to take note that goalkeeper Zack Steffen, defensive midfielder (and frequent USMNT captain) Wil Trapp and forward Gyasi Zardes make up the spine of the new USMNT. They come courtesy of the Columbus Crew. Just to be clear. And let’s also not forget that if an American is chosen as the next USMNT head coach, it will be the detail-minded Columbus Crew head coach Gregg Berhalter.

It’s not surprising that when U.S. soccer started to plot against the Columbus Crew behind closed doors that its national team suffered similarly along a parallel path. It worked in opposite fashion in the early part of this century with Dos-a-Cero when U.S. soccer and MLS celebrated the country’s first soccer-specific stadium and all the talent that Crew Stadium was home to.

Time for the pendulum to swing back in the right direction and for the new Crew front office to be inspired by Lamar Hunt’s winning legacy. Lamar Hunt can rest a little easier in Heaven tonight.

The Crew is being saved. Imagine what could happen to the USMNT if they begin embracing Columbus again with everything–and everyone–its capital city has to offer.

P.S. For good measure: 

C-R-E-W, f*$! you, Precourt, we SAVED THE CREW!

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The Fallout From DC’s Superman Rumors

Please No. Please No. Please No!

As the creator and writer of a blog called Jimmy’s Daily Planet, this rumored breaking news today courtesy of the Hollywood Reporter has the potential to be sad in many ways.

While we await public reaction (or explanation) from Henry Cavill in the coming days, Mr. Cavill has said many times in past interviews–even quite recently–that he is was very keen on a ‘Man of Steel’ sequel with a more positive/Christopher Reeve/comic book feel. This rumored decision to part ways with the studio seems like it was (or would have been) strongarmed by DC because of bad movie planning and poor execution in the midst of trying to hit the reset button in the middle of its burgeoning–and not awesomely received–film universe.

It also seems like the bullish move by the power brokers of the DCEU (DC Extended Universe) to unnecessarily mirror Marvel’s cinematic playbook by growing too quickly too fast came back around with a painfully bruising left hook.

And potentially losing its Superman is a major–and foreseeable–consequence of that decision years ago.

Broadly speaking, DC Comics superheroes are better than Marvel. The actors in DC property films are better than the actors in the Marvel films. The writing has not been perfect for all of its recent films, but by-and-large DC screenplays are far superior to Marvel films.

Marvel will never create anything close to Richard Donner’s ‘Superman’ or Christopher Nolan’s ‘Dark Knight’ trilogy.

If DC’s cinematic planners would have just been patient and grown its extended universe slowly through gradual individual introductions of superheroes with interweaving storylines, then everything would be fine today.

They’d be able to handle moving faster than a speeding bullet at your local movie theater.

Big Bang Theory…Big Bang Theory…Big Bang Theory…Are You There?

‘The Big Bang Theory’ has only one season of fresh “Bazinga!” surprises courtesy of Sheldon Cooper left as the popular CBS sitcom will end after its forthcoming 12th season.

I remember going to the taping of the pilot episode for ‘The Big Bang Theory’ with my dad many moons ago. His hunch about this show that would feature super intelligent yet entertainingly awkward scientists who struggle to deal with the real world as portrayed by the girl next door, Penny, was as spot on as the science boards on the set.

I have so many great memories of that show, which includes seeing a second live taping years later. While I don’t want to confront this show ending with a lengthy article quite yet, I will mention one fun teasing tidbit about the pilot episode:

The original first scene of the series has been cut from reruns on TBS. Not really sure why? Anyways–

I’m gonna save the details of the pilot’s first scene for ‘The Big Bang Theory’ series finale post next year.

That seems fitting, like something Sheldon would do.

Columbus, OH Is Thunderstruck

What did Ohio State head football coach Urban Meyer know? When did Urban Meyer know? Why didn’t he act back in 2015?

Right now, there are more questions than answers in the breaking story concerning former assistant Zach Smith–the grandson of Mr. Meyer’s mentor Earle Bruce–and accusations against Mr. Smith regarding domestic violence against his wife. One answer we do know is that Urban Meyer has been placed on paid administrative leave while Ohio State investigates this matter.

A fair speculation we can presume at this point is that, like former OSU head coach Jim Tressel, there was an effort by Mr. Meyer to slide a critical issue under the rug to prevent a tough personal decision. Particularly given the severity of the situation, Mr. Meyer absolutely should have acted to protect Zach Smith’s wife, regardless of the lifelong family connection via Mr. Bruce.

More recently, Mr. Meyer should have told the truth when publicly asked about whether he knew about the aforementioned allegation against Zach Smith back in 2015.

This story will develop by the day, hour and minute. For now, in the immediate aftermath, it’s difficult envisioning Urban Meyer remaining the head coach of The Ohio State Buckeyes.