Game Time: The Cable Guy
For most of his tenure in Oakland, Tom Cable has been your run-of-the-mill, overmatched, "dead man walking" NFL head coach. When he was hired last season in the wake of Lane Kiffin's firing, the things that jumped out at me about Cable were:
-- His only head coaching experience consisted of four seasons at the University of Idaho where he compiled a sporty 11-35 record
-- He was the first Idaho head coach in 22 years to be fired; his most recent predecessors had all been successful and moved onto better jobs
-- He looks EXACTLY like "Sean and John Show" producer Kyle "The Taskmaster" Manthey. Check it out...
Separated at birth?
Rice University Owls Football vs. Prairie View A&M University Football
TicketsSat., Oct. 22, 2:30pm
University of Houston Cougars Football vs. UCF Knights Football
TicketsSat., Oct. 29, 11:00am
Rice University Owls Football vs. Florida Atlantic University Owls Football
TicketsSat., Nov. 5, 2:30pm
University of Houston Cougars Football vs. Tulane University Football
TicketsSat., Nov. 12, 11:00am
But surely, the casual football fan did not give a rat's ass about Tom Cable when he was hired. It took Cable's caving in assistant coach Randy Hansen's face in a team meeting to make him somewhat interesting, it took his denying it to make him laughable, and it took allegations of physical abuse from a handful of women he either dated or married going back to the Reagan Administration to make him pathologically creepy and dangerous.
So with these skeletons now out of Cable's closet and with all of this appearing to be a classic case of "where there's smoke, there's fire," now we're in a place where Cable's job security is being debated as a result of these allegations (again some of them taking place nearly 20 years ago). It's at the point where the National Organization of Women has now taken a keen interest in Oakland Raiders football.
To be very clear, I think hitting a woman is the most cowardly thing anyone could do (unless of course it's by another woman and it happens in a food court at a grubby casino in California, then it's hilarious). But do we really need Tom Cable's abusive track record of "MMA fighter trapped in a fat husband's body" to fire him as coach of the Raiders?
I'm going to save everyone -- the Raiders, Tom Cable, people who report on this shit, the N.O.W. -- a whole lot of time, and I'm going to look like a fucking genius in the process. Here goes....FIRE TOM CABLE BECAUSE THE RAIDERS SUCK!!
Fire him because JaMarcus Russell still reads defenses as if they're written in Sanskrit!! Fire him because Darrius Heyward-Bey has fewer catches than Michael Crabtree and has played six more games!!! Fire him because apparently he can't get through a coach's meeting without playing whack-a-mole with an assistant coach's cheekbone!!!
Do we really need to spend our time wringing our hands over whether or not Tom Cable's non-football peccadilloes prevent him from being a head coach worth keeping?? He could be donating his entire salary to a homeless shelter, helping old ladies across the street at lunchtime every day, and leading the entire city of Oakland in group prayer and he should STILL BE FIRED!! Why? Because he's a shitty head coach!!!
Alas, I expect this whole thing to fester for quite some time, not because Cable deserves to finish out the season, but because at this point I picture Raiders' owner Al Davis a little like King Longshanks at the end of Braveheart, laying in a bed with Raiders sheets at the Raiders headquarters, unable to verbalize anything, coughing up phlegm every two seconds while his kingdom crumbles around him. (Does this mean that Kyle Orton is William Wallace? God, I hope not.)
If for no other reason, part of me hopes it gets drawn out because when Tom Cable goes
away, so does our fresh line of Tom Cable-Kyle Manthey jokes.
LEBRON JAMES: CRY BABY
I'm not sure how many of you saw the end of the Bulls-Cavaliers game last night. (Yes, I am one of those sick puds that watch NBA basketball in early November, even when I don't have an active wager on the game.)
The Cavs trailed by one and had the ball for the last possession. As you all know, they have arguably the best player on the planet on their roster. So LeBron James did what superstar players in the NBA do in games coming down to the last possession -- he drove the lane and
hurled his body at breakneck speed into traffic, flailing his arms about and losing the ball with the hopes that the NBA referees would do what they always do: bail him out with a shooting foul on the Bulls. But a funny thing happened -- the NBA referees actually got one right!
LeBron was clearly not fouled and the referees not only saw it that way, but CALLED it that way. That's right, an NBA superstar (at home, no less!) actually didn't get a bailout call in the waning seconds. In the history of miraculous things to ever occur in sports this ranks somewhere between "Villanova upsets Georgetown" and "Trent Dilfer, Super Bowl Champion."
My favorite part was LeBron's act afterwards. He stood there on the court for several seconds with a sour puss on his face, showing up the refs every step of the way, and then in the post-game interviews spewed forth his standard disingenuous "yeah, I got fouled, but the refs didn't see it that way." Combine this with his petulant display after losing to Orlando in the playoffs last year (when he left the floor without shaking hands with anyone and skipped the postgame presser), and another layer of the onion that is "King James: Fucking Baby" is peeled back. All hail the King!
Meet Elizabeth Lambert. She is a defender for the University of New Mexico women's soccer team. She enjoys contact, LOTS of contact. So much contact that she is presumably the first Mountain West woman's soccer player to have her own "highlight" package on SportsCenter. Check out this video. Lambert is someone I would want on my team, merely out of fear that if she weren't on my team she'd hunt me down and proceed to kick me in the face, legs, and nuts. This may be one chick who could actually handle Tom Cable.
THIS WEEKEND'S BEST BETS
Before making sure you've got enough space on the VISA for the cash advance, let's take a look at how things went last week:
Central Michigan +5.5 at Boston College (BC 31-10, LOSER)
Nebraska -13 at Baylor (Nebraska 20-10, LOSER)
Michigan -7 at Illinois (Illinois 38-13, God did I SUCK!!)
Notre Dame -27.5 over Wash St (ND 40-14, backdoor cover, FUCK!)
Jaguars/Titans under 44.5 (Tenn 30-13, WINNER! YAY!)
Eagles +1 vs NY Giants (Philly 40-17 WINNER)
So last week, 2-4. Let's see if we can't do better this week:
LSU +7.5 at Alabama
A&M -3 at Colorado
Houston -1 at Tulsa
Falcons -10 vs Redskins
Texans +8.5 at colts
Dolphins +10.5 at Patriots
Good luck on that ace!!
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you'll never miss Houston Press' biggest stories.