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73 days until Opening Night vs. USC

The Major League Baseball Hot Stove season is well underway as the flea market Marlins have shown, so figured why not turn on the FIU Stove baseball hot stove as well.

As of this blog there are 73 days until FIU opens the 2008 baseball season at home against the USC Trojans on Friday, Feb. 22. There have been many of you craving some baseball blogs and guess what, Christmas is coming early for you people.

Start sending in your questions here on the GPP for new FIU baseball coach Turtle Thomas as the GPP will conduct a question and answer session with TT and you folks ask the questions. We'll try to get to as many of your questions as possible with TT and post the answers on here soon. Please have your questions in by this Saturday, Dec. 15.

Not exactly an earth-shattering performance by the FIU hoops team the other night against the Hurricanes. The way the Golden Panthers played made um look like North Carolina or Kansas. I know I mentioned it in the live hoops blog, but FIU hoops needs to hit the weight room as Hoops last Saturday's domination in the paint by um showed. It seemed like FIU was very tentative to attack the basket and settled for jump shots. Also, I'm not too sure what is the purpose of the FIU offense. It just seems like guys are standing still waiting for a pass. There is not much movement or cutting to the basket. Not saying they have to become the Phoenix Suns, but there just doesn't seem to be much life when the Golden Panthers have the ball.

Yes, it was not a conference game for FIU, but the Golden Panthers have not shown any consistency this season that allows you to believe they will compete for the Sun Belt title. Sun Belt play begins at Arkansas-Little Rock on Saturday night. It's still early, but I was expecting a better start by the Golden Panthers hoops squad. Maybe 5-2 now instead of 3-4 with USF and um having better teams than FIU.

El Monstruo Antwan Barnes comes back home to Miami on Sunday when the Ravens take on the Dolphins at Dolphin Stadium. With the Swiss cheese Miami O-line, it could Ab be a big day for EM. I'm scheduled to cover the Ravens on Sunday for the Herald's game coverage, hopefully EM can get a few sacks, an interception and score a touchdown while he's in town.

***BLOG ADVISORY: The next blog posted on the GPP will be the guest blog of our second winner of the Win a GPP Blog contest. That would be CrazyCane.

But after that blog is posted, we'll roll out the red carpet for the 1st Annual GPP Football Awards. Red

PANTHER PAWSE

UltimateFIUFan: Good to meet one of the GPPers in person at last Saturday's game. The Raja Bell video can be seen on the fiusports.com website. The FIU athletic department is a fan of this blog and read it daily so they got the Bell tribute on their website. As far as FIU students and fans at the game, you got to remember this is a bandwagon town we're living in and in the past FIU students and fans have not had much to cheer about. I was somewhat surprised not to see a better turnout last Saturday, but when FIU starts winning on a regular basis and it will, then you'll see plenty of FIU people in the seats. And you will even see people, who have no connection to FIU start showing up and supporting the Golden Panthers. That's just the way this city works.

FIUJM: Talk and write about all the recruiting you want on the GPP. It's all welcomed here and positive when you have some of the more talented players in this area wanting to come to FIU. My big issue with recruiting is that we rely on the words of these 18-19 year olds, who have not signed any letters. Most of these kids are easily influenced and cannot make up their minds on such simple things like picking Oreo between Rocky Road or Oreo at Coldstone (go for the Oreo, kid) and yet the public gets all excited about what a kid says in the months before signing day. I'd like to see the John Hancock on the dotted line in February before writing anything about it. Although, I know the Herald will have me write FIU recruiting stories as signing day nears.

CJ: We'll have another GPP New Stadium Tour in early January and we'll post updates and new pictures on FIU's new home. I know fiusports.com already has some new photos up if you people want to check that out.

Baseball Fan & Blonde2864: Welcome both to the GPP. And yes, baseball is right around the corner.

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