Introducing the Hail or Rail Scale: Cam Newton, Boise State, Brad Childress, Randy Moss, Rajon Rondo, Blake Griffin, Zenyatta and the Giants

SportsChump would like to introduce a new, interactive feature called the Hail or Rail Scale (name subject to change based upon better suggestions from readers).  It’ll be a weekly, or monthly, or every-so-oftenly barometer where we quantify how much we love or hate certain figures in sports and entertainment.

Our state-of-the-art statistics department will keep an accurate account of these numbers and will ultimately determine who are our most beloved athletes and those we’d like to kick to the curb.

If there are any athletes that I failed to mention in our flagship Hail or Rail Scale, please submit them for our consideration.


1 point – Cam Newton

The average sports fan is generally oblivious to the seedy underbelly of college football recruiting.  We assume some illegitimate stuff goes down, a secret handshake, a private loan, but we don’t give much of it a second thought.  That is until we hear that a Heisman hopeful allegedly requested hundreds of thousands of dollars to attend a particular university.  Our ears perk up.  How could this be and how often does it happen that we don’t know about?

It’s been three straight seasons that a sophomore has won the Heisman Trophy.  After the Reggie Bush debacle, stripping athletes of their Heismanism is not another streak they’d like to start.  Don’t be surprised if the Trust thinks long and hard before giving their beloved trophy to someone who’s even slightly linked to alleged wrongdoing, even if the accusations are totally false.  After all, Cam’s innocent until proven guilty, right?

2 points – Boise State

What must an undefeated team do to get respect?  Boise hasn’t lost a game in nearly two seasons.  When it comes to the Broncos, the BCS is in a lose-lose-lose situation.  They can either exclude Boise State from the title game, which will prove absolutely nothing.  They can put them in, have them lose to a major conference opponent and prove they didn’t belong in the first place.  Or they can vote Boise in, have them win a national championship and prove that the BCS conferences aren’t all they’re cracked up to be.  None of these options can possibly sound palatable to the masterminds behind the BCS.  In the meantime, Boise keeps winning ballgames and continues to get bypassed in the polls.  For that reason, they rank on our list, not because they’re hated, but because they get NO love whatsoever.

3 points – Brad Childress

I really don’t want to write any more about this guy than I already have.  Can someone please put coach Childress out of his misery?  He’s called out his quarterback in post-game press conferences and has picked fights with Percy Harvin.  It sounds to me like he’s begging to be fired.  He might be a happier man for it.

I have a friend, a lifelong Vikings fan, who is over the Minneapolis melodrama.  For him, the season can’t end soon enough.  Sidney Rice’s hip, Adrian Peterson’s fumbles, Percy Harvin’s migraines and Brett Favre’s ahem have exhausted even the most dedicated Vikings fan.  In hindsight, maybe Childress was the wrong guy to manage this experiment.

4 points – Randy Moss

Was there any doubt who would top this week’s most hated personality list?  Even former teammate and mentor Cris Carter didn’t have Moss’ back after his latest antics.  First, Moss ran himself out of New England by telling people he wouldn’t re-sign with them.  Then he ran himself out of Minnesota by harassing local restauranteurs at a Vikings practice meal.  Moss ultimately signed with the Titans only after no other team in the league would claim him off the waiver wire.  It looks like the rest of the NFL is as tired of Moss’ act as we are.


1 point – Rajon Rondo

Have you noticed the debate has subsided over whether Chris Paul or Deron Williams is the best point guard in the NBA? There’s a reason for that.  His name is Rajon Rondo.  Boston’s point guard is off to a ridiculous start, averaging an uncanny 15 assists a game.  And he’s doing so with plantar fasciitis!!  While Atlanta, Orlando and Miami battle for first place in the Southeast Division, the Celtics are essentially a lock to win the Atlantic, which will be huge come playoff seeding.  Rondo’s considerably better than any of the point guards on those other three teams… which might also be the difference come playoff time.

2 points – Blake Griffin

NBA fans have waited an entire year for Griffin to play some ball.  So far, it’s been well worth the wait.  He’s averaging 18 points, 11 rebounds and has given Clippers fans reason to believe again… and by again, I mean for the first time ever.  That is until they look at the standings and realize they’re 1-7.  Well, at least they have one reason to cheer.

3 points – San Francisco Giants

Baseball season is over and the Giants reign supreme.  While other major cities usually set fire to things when celebrating a major championship, the good people of San Fran decided to set something else ablaze.  In this day and age of bloated payrolls, overrated superstars and owners crying poverty, the Giants proved a rag-tag bunch of guys with talent, camaraderie and a little desire can still win baseball’s ultimate prize.

4 points – Zenyatta

My favorite horse movie of all-time, without question, is “The Black Stallion.”  Call it a personal preference but all other horse movies (Secretariat, Sea Biscuit, Ruffian, etc.) seem to follow the same story line:  Horse overcomes all odds to win big race.  Production studios have to be salivating over the Zenyatta story, however, about a filly who won her first 19 races only to finish second by a nose in her final race at the Breeders Cup.  Congratulations to Zenyatta for a spectacular career but I think I’ll just wait for the DVD.

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51 Replies to “Introducing the Hail or Rail Scale: Cam Newton, Boise State, Brad Childress, Randy Moss, Rajon Rondo, Blake Griffin, Zenyatta and the Giants”

  1. Hey Chump…I’m back in the Sunshine State!


    #1 Cam Newton. Well, I am a little sensitive about this, seeing as my beloved Trojans are being punished for YEARS! Maybe Cam needs to win the Heisman, Auburn needs to win national championships, and then a few years later, the NCAA will finally do a thorough investigation. Yep. Someone’s nose is gonna grow eventually.


    Re #1 Rondo…you know I think he was the reason for the Celtics success last year. He’s all grown up now! But heavens…learn to shoot free throws!

    Re #3 Giants….San Franciscans celebrated by electing a slate of Democrats!!! And banning toys from McDonald’s Happy Meals. How grumpy is that?


  2. Welcome back East, Elizabeth.

    We haven’t talked too much about your Trojans and Lane Kiffin. I’m guessing the honeymoon is slowly coming to an end?

    With more bad news coming out about CamCam daily, he might just be getting points in the next edition of Hail or Rail as well.

    Re: Rondo, he definitely needs to work on his perimeter jumper as well. It’ll make him that much more dangerous. I’ve always been interested in seeing how he performs without the big three.

    San Fran elected Democrats? We saw none of that here in the Sunshine State. If you want to see something pretty funny stuff, click on the hyperlink in the San Fran piece.

  3. I’ll rail against Boise. If you want respect join a real conference. Playing 1 or 2 mediocre teams a season does not a champion make. I’ll admit that Boise can beat a good team on any given day, but let them try playing 7 or 8 good teams a year.

  4. Aer…

    Just to play Devil’s Advocate with ya’, how do you think Boise State would fare in the SEC East this year? Or Pac-10? Or Big Ten for that matter?

    Don’t you think this team would absolutely roll through the Big East or ACC?

  5. That was a pretty funny video about “what’s blazing” is SF. Surprisingly, Californians voted down Proposition 19, which would have paved the way to decriminalizing marijuana possession. One of the biggest opponents: growers of medical marijuana. Go figure.

    Back to sports….Hey, let’s give a HAIL to the Oregon Ducks too!

  6. Zenyatta’s jockey .. dumb !

    Cam Newton dumb…. did he not learn anything from the experience of Reggie Bus ?

    Brad Childres …. dumb and an as_hole as he’s completely lost the confidence of his team and owner.

    Blake Griffin hopefully have a longer NBA career than Greg Oden who’s not been offered an option on his existing contract by the Blazers.

    Paul Millsap played lights out ball and the Heat’s infamous trio was left in his wake . Ain’t life grand ?

    Next on Lincecum’s agenda have sex with Taylor Swift before Jake Gyllenhall deflowers her ____-. is she a virgin by any chance ?

    Giants’ GM Brian Sabean’s letter Brian Cashman of the Yankees …….. ‘Moneyball does work’ deal with it .


    tophatal 😛

  7. Chris, great idea to have Hail or Rail. I’ll look forward to it. I’d like to hail Armando Gallaraga, the pitcher who lost a perfect game through a human error on the part of an umpire. Both he and the ump showed superior class in this unfortunate incident. I’ll rail against Terrell Owens for bowling over an end-zone, on-field security guard,albeit accidentally, without any attempt whatsoever to see if the collision had injured the man. Totally without class. With a quick act of kindness, Owens could have washed away a lot of the animus he’s created throughout his career.

  8. Elizabeth…

    That seems like a catch 22, although I can’t say I know enough about it. Perhaps they have a vested interest.

    And the Ducks are receiving much love. You’re right. Are they essentially a lock for the title game?

  9. Aer…

    Whoever wins the SEC East will have three losses, man.

    And if that team (Fla/SC) somehow manages to knock off an undefeated Auburn in the championship game, the conference can say goodbye to their chances of continuing their national championship streak.

  10. Al…

    Hasn’t Griffin ALREADY had a longer NBA career than Oden?

    And Paul Millsap was about to make the next Hail Scale for sure until the Jazz did what they did to the Magic tonight. That whole TEAM might make it for smacking the two Florida teams in the mouth.

  11. I’d like to add Wade Phillips/Jerry Jones single handedly taking the Cowboys out of the news for the rest of the year! That is kind of a rail and hail rolled up in one. Hail if you like it and rail if your a cowboys fan!

    Rondo has been ridiculous this year so far. What are the chances he gets to Stockton’s record of assists?

  12. Oh and on the Cam Newton thing. If the rumors are true and they prove that he did receive money from the school. There better be harsher sanctions on Auburn than USC. If there for some sick reason there isn’t, it will just show you that favortism you were talking about with Boise, and how the SEC can do no wrong…

  13. Chris

    Stan Van Gundy’s brain is now on meltdown overload .

    Latest on Newton was the fact that his father Cecille was in need of money for the refurbishment of his church of which he’s the pastor of. So what was happening with the donations from the church’s congregation is what I’d like to know ?


    tophatal 😛

  14. Chap….

    The Cowboys are one of those teams you love to hate if you’re not a fan. I’m sure most are more than happy to see them suck.

    And I looked it up the other night. Rondo’d have to average over 14+ assists a game to best Stockton. With his foot the way it is, I just don’t see that happening. It’ll have to catch up with him eventually.

  15. Chap…

    They got Michigan and they got USC.

    Bama also was placed punished not long ago.

    If it is found that Auburn coughed up that much coin to land Newton, basically they’re fucked.

    No two ways about it.

  16. Al…

    I’m surprised SVG didn’t pop a blood vessel in last night’s loss. I would have. I don’t care who’s winning and who’s losing… there’s no reason to allow a team to come back from 18, PARTICULARLY when they just did so to another team the night before.

    And can Dwight learn how to shoot a free throw already?

    Re: Newton, I’ll be interested to see if they use that whole church thing to soften the blow, as in… well, at least we didn’t spend the money on drugs and hookers.

  17. Chris

    There’s more to this story than the SEC would care to make public. SEC Commissioner is playing his cards close to his chest . Look at the aftermath of the Vols’ basketball program and what Bruce Pearl is alleged to have done ? They’ve lessened his salary allowed him to keep his job while the NCAA still continues their deliberations.

    tophatal 😛

  18. Al…

    I’m thinking there’s more to this story than ANYONE would like to make public. The SEC, his folks, Mississippi State, Auburn, Florida, etc. Did you hear how evasive Dan Mullen was in his interview?

  19. Next time you should rail about the dynamic duo of David Kahn and Kurt Rambis.

    They have won about 10% of their games and continue to abuse/misuse Kevin Love (the face of the franchise).

    Love isn’t even averaging 30 minutes a game. Ridiculous!

  20. Yeah man, I can’t believe Rondo has been doing all of this with Planter fachitas (sp.?). It’s awesome to see an old skool type point guard receive the recognition he deserves…

    They did get Michigan and USC, but why didn’t they get Florida? Favortism in the SEC that’s why!

  21. First, the BCS. The old argument that a playoff system will make the season too long is still a load of crap. The playoffs could be just 16 teams. The bowls are already in place. At most, it would extend the season 4 weeks. The NCAA doesn’t seem to have a problem with the “long” season for basketball. With a 16 team field, teams like Boise State would have a chance.
    Second, Rajon Rondo. My adopted son has really matured. He seems to play at a higher level whenever he plays against a top tier point guard. As for his lack of a decent outside shot, when he can drive to the hoop like no one else, so what. The Celtics-Heat game tonight should be very interesting.

  22. Chris

    Mullen wasn’t being evasive it’s just that the SID on campus hadn’t written his statement for him as of yet . You know how these things go don’t you ?


    tophatal 🙂

  23. Chap…

    I don’t know that Florida’s sins have quite equated to those of the other two programs we mentioned.

    I’m actually wondering if any of this Cam Newton stuff will have a residual effect on the Gators. Dan Mullen was awfully non-committal in his recent interviews regarding the Heisman hopeful.

    Besides, you know Tim Tebow said a blessing over the entire campus.

  24. Call me kooky, Snake, but I just love when you take a break from watching Celtics basketball to talk college football. It make me believe in humankind again.

    But your basketball to football comparison holds no water. College basketball programs will play up to 35 games in a season (if they’re good enough), but the sport isn’t nearly as violent. By the way, have you started scouting the next Celtics draft pick yet? I know you have a pipeline into Ainge’s office.

    I’m sure we’ll be texting tonight for Celtics-Heat. Look forward to it.

  25. And unfortunately I won’t be able to catch the fight. Should be a good one.

    I heard about Meggett on the radio today and was afraid to read into the details.

  26. Chris

    SEC Commissioner Mike Slive has had information concerning Newton since early April and it’s only now they’re taking action ?

    Dave Meggett is an ass and so too are his lawyers if they think that they have a chance of appealing his sentence . The evidence against him is irrefutable never mind the fact of the prior acts where he’s left other jobs because he’d been found guilty of sexual harassment and sexual assault in one case.

    The Heat lose again and already LeBron is making excuses . Oh I forgot he must’ve thought he was conducting an interview with Jim Gray at the time.

    tophatal 🙂

  27. Top Hat….

    I would not want to be Slive right now. This Newton stuff is starting to get real ugly. And how soon before we give Cecil Newton our pimp of the year award?

    I’m still not sure why Meggett didn’t testify on his own behalf, Al. That’s another ugly story in the world of sports. The woman owed him money and she agreed to repay him with sexual favors? Guess that arrangement wasn’t good enough. Goodness.

    And the Heat? Let’s just say Pat Riley doesn’t look all that happy.

  28. Chris

    Mike Slive had better show good judgement because if it’s left the NCAA they’re liable to screw things up.

    As for Meggett had he testified in his own defense then the prosecution would’ve been able to bring up his prior bad acts as it relates to sexual harassment . He’d been fired from two previous position for propositioning two female employees he worked alongside.

    Here’s my take on Cam Newton

    Keeping It In The Family ……… It Pays …. It’s Simply Business


    tophatal 😛

  29. It’ll be interesting to see how the season unfolds for both Newton and Auburn, Al, but I’m not sure they’ll have enough solid information to put an end to this before January. Bottom line is, it’s an ugly situation.

    And Meggett? Ugh.

    None of this is any good.

  30. Chris

    The perception is there and something did happen as with regard to the statement made ex Miss State player Kenny Rogers and the fact that the athletics dept there broached the subject with the SEC and the NCAA. If Rogers is truthful and affidavit is signed acknowledging that his statement is indeed factual then something has to be done.

    What You See Is What You Get …..

    tophatal 🙂

  31. The line in today’s Georgia-Auburn game is only 6.5, Al. You’d think it would be bigger considering they’re playing in Auburn and they’re undefeated.

    It’ll be interesting to see how they line up with all these distractions.

  32. I’m surprised Stern hasn’t done anything about Sterling, Al.

    He has shown no interest in putting a decent product on the floor. This has been going on for years now.

  33. no post this week…here are my picks tho:

    Ravens +1 over Falcons
    Lions +3 over Bills
    Jets -3 over Browns
    Bucs -6.5 over Carolina
    Bengals +7 over Colts
    Titans -1.5 over Dolphins
    Vikings -1 over Bears
    Jaguars -1.5 over Texans
    Denver +1 over Chiefs
    49ers -6 over Rams
    Cardinals -3 over Seahawks
    Dallas +14 over Giants
    Patriots +4.5 over Steelers
    Redskins +3 over Eagles

  34. If anyone else here thinks that ACo’s a slacker, raise your hand.

    Or maybe he just couldn’t get enough of watching Rex Ryan wear a blonde wig this week.


  35. Coop…

    I guess NBA attendance isn’t scrutinized as much as NFL attendance is. The Clips pull in a surprisingly good number, any way you slice it (16,500 a game and 85% capacity).

    I guess it’s still good to be seen at the Staples Centeer no matter who’s playing there, huh?

  36. Chris

    Those lines in Vegas can be so deceptive but hey that’s one of the reasons why we’re lured in there isn’t it ?

    Stern will never go after an owner when their teams are mediocre. They’re still making some money to an extent . Clippers are conservatively worth in excess of $350 million and when you consider the Lakers’ worth ($650 million) and the fact that they share the same venue you can see how wide the chasm is between the two teams and their respective ambitions.

    The Bucs are cleaning house by using the Panthers as a mop , broom and slop bucket !

    tophatal 🙂

  37. Chris

    Pacquiao slapped Margarito ’bout like the bi_ch he is ! That fight became obsolete once it got beyond the fourth round . It was all downhill from there for Margarito !

    😛 _____ 🙁

    tophatal … 🙂

  38. Lines? Vegas? Don’t make me get on a plane, Al. Have you ever been?

    And if Stern hasn’t gone after James Dolan all these years, why would he go after anyone?

    At 6-3, the Bucs are looking nice, Al. Who outside (or even inside) that locker room would have though the playoffs were a distinct possibility.

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