To get started after a day off Monday...
Serious hoits: Apparently, suddenly getting work with the ball can be hazardous to your health.
Wide receiver Glenn Coleman will miss his second consecutive game with a shoulder injury suffered against Louisiana-Lafayette while catching four of his eight receptions this season. Wide receiver Jacob Younger’s two catches for 26 yards against Duke, one pass completion for 44 yards to Dominique Rhymes and two key penalties apparently came with a shoulder injury. He’s officially questionable for Saturday.
Don’t expect Coleman or free safety Chuck Grace back this week. Guard Curtis Bryant (thumb sprain) is questionable.
The Line: FIU opened a 19-point favorite. It’s up to 19.5 or 20 depending on which sportsbook you check. Translation: some light FIU money by serious bettors who like to get down on games before the sportsbooks figure out they might’ve miscalculated on a line.
Timeouts and such: As I forgot to ask about the timeout usage in the postgame and had Monday off, I brought it up to Mario Cristobal Tuesday. He gave a full explanation of those and threw in a side swipe at me for questioning in the blog them not running Perry on third and 1 in the fourth quarter on the play Wesley Carroll bounce passed a hitch to Wayne Times. One of you tattletales definitely told him about the latter and probably the timeout section, too. I couldn’t help envisioning some guy my age in t-shirt and khakis yelling in Eric Cartman voice down Collins Avenue, “Coach Cristobal! Coach Cristoballll! David just said you waste timeouts and, for the third time in three weeks, called out your running back usage!”
(How do I know someone told him? He said someone called him on the Perry thing. When I expressed mock disappointment that he didn’t read the blog, he gave an explanation that could be summed up thusly: I don’t know enough to make it worth his while to read me. I thought, “Aw, SNAP.”)
After I stopped laughing at all of that, I thought of this…
Anyway, as he’d said Saturday after the game about the second timeout in the second half, a player got rocked and disoriented. The first timeout of the half, off the fourth and 1, he said was caused by “a personnel issue.” He wouldn’t elaborate, but I have the feeling that it wasn’t all about FIU’s personnel.
The first half timeout on a second and 3, he said, “They jumped into something that was very foreign and did not match up with the play or the check to it. We hoped that they were bluffing or disguising something and they didn’t. So we used it for that purpose.”
He did admit they perhaps would’ve liked to have had one of the first half timeouts back. While talking timeouts, without segue, he jumped to:
“And third down over here, that is a run play. I know you had written that it was a throw out on third down with Perry getting hot. It is a run first play. That’s a read option. When there’s six guys in the box, plus a seventh safety coming in the corner where we’re playing it, you’re outnumbered by two. It’s all option football. So you have to pull it. You keep it there, you’re going to get blasted for minus two.”
For shutting out No. 21 Kentucky 1-0 on six saves in his first collegiate game, freshman goalkeeper Rodney Greiling got the Conference USA Defensive Player of the Week honor. Usual starter Eric Reyes got sidelined by an illness, moving Greiling's debut up by several games.
She didn't get Sun Belt Conference Player of the Week, but few players have been as tangibly hot as freshman forward Ashleigh Shim. In the women's team's current five-game winning streak, Shim's picked up a point in four games and her two goals Sunday against South Alabama gave her four goals and an assist in the streak.
ALL-STAR GAME TICKET SALES
A line at FIU for basketball tickets? A line two or three times greater than the actual attendance for most of the games I’ve covered at FIU? I couldn’t miss the opportunity to see that. So I swung by Alfonso Field at FIU Stadium at Camp Mitch Monday morning after dropping the kid off at school. Ticket sales for "LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh present The South Florida All-Star Classic" figured to be amusing, at least.
Some snapshots from the morning.
Two young women left the southeast window with Lower Bowl reserved seats, which were sold out in about 40 minutes. Immediately, a guy in a white shirt and sunglasses descended on them asking if they would sell. “No.” He left.
I said to them, “You didn’t even want to hear his offer?”
One said, “No! We just paid $100 a piece for these!”
And probably could’ve sold them right then for at least $200. I understand you camp out for royalty seats to what you think is a once in a lifetime event that’s going to be The Scene, man. Been there. I’m not sure how much money you would’ve had to offer my 9-year-old butt for my 1977 Indy 500 ticket, but you don’t have it on you and probably can’t get your hands on it. But I was 9.
As a college student and as a full adult, with food to buy and rent to pay, I’ve at least thought about going for the money – Publix and FPL don’t cash memories. To not even listen to the man’s offer says you have too much money or too little sense.
It was nice meeting those of you who stopped me to say hi or ask if I knew what was going on as far as if or when they would stagger the opening of the windows. Oh, for those of you who saw me being so absorbed doing a crowd estimate count that I went on the wrong side of the open gate at the southwest corner of the stadium and ran into a fence: I hope you saw the whole thing and laughed really hard.
At first, surely to create buzz and a great scene for media, tickets were to be sold only at the Fieldhouse University Credit Union Box Office. Great idea, I thought. About as pure as it gets, gives an advantage to students and the scarcity of tickets in the hands of ticket brokers would really drive up the secondary market prices, multiplying the buzz.
Upon rolling up Monday, I saw lines running from ticket windows on the south side of the stadium, in addition to the one at the main box office. And two of the south side ticket windows had signs announcing “Upper Level GA $50 CASH ONLY” while others were marked “Lower Reserved $100 Upper Level GA $50.”
This is where old school concert ticket buying training would’ve come in handy. Back when TicketMaster was young, jheri-curls were cool and if somebody said an album dropped, we figured it broke, concerts meant camping out at a record store with a TicketMaster machine and as much cash as you could scrounge. Nobody used credit cards to buy tickets. Too much could go wrong with credit cards. Machines could get slow (happened Monday at one window) or just stop working. And, a cash transaction was faster, a big consideration when a few seconds could cost you a few rows or even a section.
(Besides, you couldn’t give up your credit card to the person buying your tickets. You never bought your own tickets. There was a 12-ticket per person limit. As we were suburban spawn but no longer in an area so rural we had fields that needed tending by a large brood, nobody had that many brothers and sisters. So, the first person in line bought their ticket, their best friends’ tickets and probably those wanted by No. 2 in line. The No. 2 person did the same and so on. For Van Halen in 1984, I was 16th in line at the Georgetown Road Karma, but my money was up at No. 4. A lot of camaraderie and trust in those concert camp outs, now that I think about it. Each of us in line was holding hundreds of OPM (Other People’s Money), but beyond No. 3 or 4 in line, most of the people whose money we held, we had met at the camp out. Once, when I had to work a Mickey D’s shift a 15-minute drive away, I was given a ride and marked as present for the eight hourly attendance checks of my shift.)
What ensued Monday was predictable. First, came the complaints from those in the main box office line about the other windows opening at the same time. The main Fieldhouse box office opened approximately 20 minutes early, I’m told (I left at 11:15 to run an errand and came back at noon). And heeeere come the complaints from those in Upper Level Only lines that they didn’t know this line was Upper Level Only until they got near the window (reading is fundamental, folks.). Some of that group complained when they weren’t allowed to slide over into the front of the All Tickets Cash or Credit line. And, predictably, those lines moved more ponderously than Vince Wilfork does with a football.
When the cash only lines cleared quickly, the remaining desperate ticket brokers whipped out cash and lumbered through a couple more times. In the following video, you see a stampede for the last open window.
Angry folks still without tickets at the 1:49 p.m. announcement of "sold out!" griped they didn’t know there would be separate lines or that it would help to have cash or that some tickets were flipped on the spot for decent whip-out. My brow wrinkled with incomprehension -- how could they be surprised? – before I realized most of these students were used to buying tickets online.
“It’s socialism!” shouted one young man whom I hope isn’t a student.
No, son, it’s about as pure a form of capitalism as you’re likely to see.