Philly Players All Over This Map of America’s Most Popular Retro Jerseys

Top-Selling Mitchell & Ness Jerseys in 2014

The top-selling Mitchell & Ness jerseys in 2014 (Graphic via Mitchell & Ness)

Mitchell & Ness recently released the top-selling retro jerseys in each state from 2014. And a man from Lower Merion has the best-selling jersey in seven different states: Albert C. Barnes, founder of the Barnes Foundation!

Okay, okay, it’s actually Kobe Bryant, NBA superstar and Philadelphia native with the tumultuous relationship with the City of Brotherly Love. His 1996-97 Lakers jersey — from his rookie year — is the top-seller in Delaware, Minnesota, Nevada, Ohio, Oregon, Tennessee and Wisconsin. Read more »

Jimmy Rollins: Out of Philadelphia, I’m Now “Free”

Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Jimmy Rollins against the Chicago White Sox during a spring training baseball game at Camelback Ranch.

Los Angeles Dodgers shortstop Jimmy Rollins against the Chicago White Sox during a spring training baseball game at Camelback Ranch.

Last year, Jimmy Rollins passed Mike Schmidt for the most hits in Phillies history. I happened to attend the next day. Rollins led off. He popped up.

“I’ll be so happy when he’s gone,” a fan behind me yelled. “The most overrated player in Phillies history.” It’s impossible to quantify just who is the most overrated player in the long history of the Fightin Phils, but it’s probably not the man with the biggest hit in Phillies history. But there has always been a segment of the fanbase that doesn’t like Rollins. He pops up too much. (Yeah, his infield fly ball numbers are a little higher than average.)

Sometimes, he doesn’t run out grounders. Last year, Pete Rose criticized Rollins for caring about individual statistics. (Yes, Pete Rose, the man who calls himself the Hit King.) The comments on this CSN Philly piece about Rose’s comments tell the story. One fan even calls Rollins a “cancer” on the team!  Read more »

The Villanova Rout of Lafayette in 8 GIFs

Mar 19, 2015; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Villanova Wildcats guard Josh Hart (3) dunks the ball against the Lafayette Leopards during the second half in the second round of the 2015 NCAA Tournament at Consol Energy Center.

Mar 19, 2015; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Villanova Wildcats guard Josh Hart (3) dunks the ball against the Lafayette Leopards during the second half in the second round of the 2015 NCAA Tournament at Consol Energy Center.

By some oddsmakers, the Villanova Wildcats were 22-point favorites coming into their Round of 64 game against the Lafayette Leopards. They covered by halftime.

Villanova opened up a 49-26 halftime lead and rolled to a 93-52 victory over an overmatched Lafayette squad. The Wildcats put six players into double figures and shot 63 percent from the field. They made 11 three pointers and held the Leopards, the second-best three-point shooting team in the country, to 4-of-18 on threes.

“We were afraid of them,” coach Jay Wright said on TV after the game. “And when these guys are afraid, they play hard and they play together.” Yeah. Villanova led 11-2, 34-13, 63-30, 75-34 and so on. Read more »

5 Reasons You Should Root for Villanova in the NCAA Tournament

Villanova Wildcats guard Darrun Hilliard II (4) and guard Josh Hart (3) celebrate after defeating the Marquette Golden Eagles 70-52 during the second half at Wells Fargo Center.

Villanova Wildcats guard Darrun Hilliard II (4) and guard Josh Hart (3) celebrate after defeating the Marquette Golden Eagles 70-52 during the second half at Wells Fargo Center.

I like Villanova’s basketball team.

I realize this is not a popular opinion for all basketball fans in Philly. Villanova is the Duke of the local basketball scene: It’s an obnoxious private school with smart kids, plus it seems to win all the time. It’s in the suburbs. Its two big local rivals (Temple and St. Joe’s) hated Villanova a ton even before the Wildcats’ recent dominance of the Big 5.

But I like the Wildcats. They’ve played good, entertaining basketball since Jay Wright became coach in 2001. He’s been rumored to be taking better jobs — sometimes, even with the Sixers – but has stayed with the Wildcats. They’ve been a tournament team all but one year since the 2004-05 season. For the last decade, Villanova has been the class of Philadelphia basketball — even if they are in the suburbs.

Even the program’s scandals are benign now. Twelve years ago, Villanova suspended 12 players for using a Villanova phone code to make unauthorized calls. Can you even imagine this type of scandal today, with cell phones and Skype?

With this in mind, here are five reasons to root for Villanova this tournament. Read more »

The Sixers’ Futility Was a Clue on Jeopardy! Last Night

Great, now your grandmother knows the Sixers started 0-17 this season. Yes, the Philadelphia 76ers 0-17 start was a clue on Jeopardy! last night in a category called Sports Jeopardy. That category also had clues about a long jumper struck by a javelin, skier Vinko “The Agony of Defeat” Bogataj and Gilbert Arenas pulling a gun on a teammate.

So, actually, now your grandmother knows that there are a lot worse things that can happen in sports than starting the season 0-17. Read more »

5 Reasons Temple Got Snubbed by NCAA Tournament Selection Committee

shutterstock_temple-flag-940x540

Temple basketball fans got an early Christmas gift last year when the Owls routed Kansas by 25. “I think we played about as well as we possibly could have,” Dunphy said after the game. Things were looking up for the Temple Owls, who had started the season 6-4.

Kansas finished 26-8, and received a No. 2 seed in the NCAA tournament. But yesterday, the selection committee played the Grinch for Temple. They were left out of the NCAA tournament, and will play instead in the NIT.

Many this morning are feeling Temple was hosed. Sports Illustrated listed Temple as its No. 1 snub in the field. The Owls finished 23-10, ending the season on a 16-5 clip, and placed third in its conference. What happened? Read more »

Villanova Gets No. 1 Seed in NCAA Tournament; Temple Out

Villanova Wildcats guard Darrun Hilliard II (4) and guard Josh Hart (3) celebrate after defeating the Marquette Golden Eagles 70-52 during the second half at Wells Fargo Center.

Villanova Wildcats guard Darrun Hilliard II (4) and guard Josh Hart (3) celebrate after defeating the Marquette Golden Eagles 70-52 during the second half at Wells Fargo Center.

After a 32-2 season, Villanova received the No. 1 seed in the East Region of the NCAA tournament. The Wildcats will play Lafayette, winners of the Patriot League, on Thursday in Pittsburgh.

But the bubble burst for Temple, which was left out of the 68-team field by the selection committee. They’re a No. 1 seed in the NIT, and will host Bucknell at the Liacouras Center on North Broad on Wednesday at 7 p.m. Read more »

Has Chip Kelly Lost His Freakin’ Mind?

Photo illustration | Alyse Moyer

Photo illustration | Alyse Moyer. Photos | USA Today Sports. From left: Sam Bradford (Jake Roth); DeMarco Murray (Tim Heitman); Kiko Alonso (Kim Klement); Chip Kelly (Brad Mills); Jeremy Maclin (Howard Smith); Nick Foles (Billy Hurst); LeSean McCoy (Kevin Hoffman). Background | Shutterstock.com,

In the past two weeks, the Philadelphia Eagles have overhauled their roster in a manner never before seen.

And the man calling all the shots: head coach Chip Kelly. Read more »

Does Trading Nick Foles for Sam Bradford Make the Birds Better?

Daniel Shirey | USA TODAY Sports

Daniel Shirey | USA TODAY Sports

When the trade for Sam Bradford was announced, my first reaction was that Chip Kelly was a secret spy, like in those movies where a Russian is trained for years in American culture, then later acts to circumvent the Democratic process. In this case, Kelly was the guy sent here to destroy the Philadelphia Eagles.

Or I thought that Kelly might be a superior being, who landed here from outer space with an intelligence incomprehensible to mere humans — that we couldn’t even begin to understand his brilliant methodology.

Today, I just question whether this guy has any idea of what he’s doing. There is a fine line between building a franchise and taking it into a deep abyss which could set it back years. Read more »

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