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travacado's thoughts
or at least "others'" thoughts that I find interesting...
Saturday, January 08, 2005
Buddy D. dies of heart attack

Bernard "Buddy" Diliberto, the beloved and bombastic New Orleans sports commenator, died late Friday of a massive heart attack at his home in Metairie, according to his son. He was 73.

Diliberto's career included stints at the Times-Picayune and local television, but it was on radio that he built a legendary career as a popular sports talk commenator on 870-AM. Diliberto, who was the original public address announcer for the New Orleans Saints, focused his shows mostly on the team and was famous for his banter with fans who called in.

Diliberto did not host his show Friday afternoon.

"He was not feeling well the last couple of days, that's why he did not work tonight," his son Mike Dilberto said. "A little after 8 p.m., he passed out at his home and couldn't be revived."

Buddy Diliberto was pronounced dead at 9:27 p.m. at Ochsner Hospital in Jefferson, according to a spokesperson for the Jefferson Parish coroner.

Diliberto amused listeners with his regular malapropisms, such as his referring to former Saints quarterback Kenny "The Snake" Stabler as "Steak Snabler," calling Saints receiver Donté Stallworth, "Donte Stallpepper," and uttering "torn lee nigaments" instead of torn knee ligaments. That on top of his heavy lisp and sometimes mangled speech mystified non-New Orleanians who heard him on the air, but only further endeared him to his loyal fans.

"We used to tell him he had whiplash of the tongue," said longtime Times-Picayune sports writer Peter Barrouquere, who replaced Diliberto in 1966 when Diliberto left to become sports director at WVUE-TV.

Diliberto represented the hardcore sports fan in New Orleans, and his passion for the Saints was matched only by his frustration with the franchise's perennial losing ways -- which he displayed in inimitable style. It was Dilberto who was the original "baghead," going on the air with a brown paper bag over his head in the midst of a 1-15 Saints season in 1980. When the Saints got their lone victory that year, Diliberto burned the bag on air.

Another time, during a Saints' dry spell, he did his sports report standing in front of a cemetery, suggesting that the Saints played like cadavers.

With his work in newspapers, television and radio, Diliberto "touched all the bases" said Times-Picayune columnist Peter Finney, who worked at the paper with Diliberto and was a longtime friend. "He was a New Orleans original. He spoke his mind. He was a true sports fan. Lived for sports."

Joe Scheuermann, Delgado's baseball coach and another longtime friend of Diliberto's, said, "He was a gentle, kindhearted person as you'd want to meet -- off the radio."

On air, Diliberto wasn't gentle, blistering Saints players, coaches, front-office executives, owners and even his own callers -- labeling as "squirrels" those he considered the most illogical. He even ripped himself for campaigning that the Saints hire Mike Ditka after Ditka coached the team for three forgettable seasons.

Diliberto got his start as a sports writer at The Times-Picayune while attending Loyola in 1950 and was a lead columnist when he left in 1966 to take his first job in television as sports director at WVUE-TV. He moved to WDSU-TV in 1980.

In 1991, he began working for WWL radio, where he started hosting a sports talk show. He was known for his colorful style and New Orleans colloquialisms. Despite his sometimes off-beat personna on the air, he was regarded as one of the top sports authorities in the region.
He was named Sportscaster of the Year in Louisiana 13 times.

For years, Diliberto promised to wear a dress if the Saints reached the Super Bowl, but often remarked he doubted it would happen in his lifetime.

"It's too bad he will not get to see the Saints make it to the Super Bowl," Mike Diliberto said. "We loved him very much and we will miss him, as well as the sports fans of New Orleans."

Buddy Diliberto was an Army veteran and served as a as a war correspondent in Korea. He was wounded and earned a purple heart.

Diliberto is survived by his wife, Peggy; one brother, Joseph; and four children -- Chris, Mike, Katie, and Debbie. Funeral arrangements are pending.

Courtesy of The (New Orleans) Times-Picayune

TIDAL 11:18 PM

Sunday, November 21, 2004
Cheerleader of the Week
Lindsay McBride, Denver Broncos Cheerleaders


Sunday, November 14, 2004
Cheerleader of the Week
Blakeleee, St. Louis Rams Cheerleaders


Friday, November 05, 2004
'Nole & void
Young Bowden draws fire as offense sputters

TALLAHASSEE -- Jeff Bowden tries not to read the sports section, listen to sports radio shows or open e-mail messages from strangers.

That way, he might not see or hear the criticism that comes with being Florida State's offensive coordinator and the head coach's son.

That criticism has grown in the wake of last Saturday's 20-17 upset loss at Maryland. Now, some fans -- many chiming in anonymously on Internet message boards -- are calling for Bowden to resign or for Coach Bobby Bowden to fire or demote his son.

Fans are angry. But so is Jeff Bowden.

"I am so [upset] the way the game went, but we had every chance to win the game with what we did," Bowden said. "Like it, dislike it -- we had every chance to win that football game. Period."

From Bowden's perspective, the Seminoles wouldn't have lost if not for a debatable penalty that nullified a touchdown on FSU's first possession or if kicker Xavier Beitia hadn't missed three field-goal attempts.

But many FSU fans blame Bowden's play-calling. His detractors say Bowden called for too many deep passes and abandoned the running game too early against Maryland.

The vast majority of the deep throws fell incomplete, and Maryland intercepted one of them. FSU receivers could not get separation from Maryland defensive backs, at least partly because wide receivers Chauncey Stovall, Willie Reid and Lorne Sam missed significant practice time leading to the game because of leg or foot injuries. Critics argue deep passes were ill-advised considering the receivers' ailments.

Ed Cunningham, a former NFL offensive lineman, served as ABC's color commentator on the telecast, and he started to lobby on the air early in the second quarter for Bowden to call more underneath routes and passes over the middle.

"I know what they saw on film," Cunningham said after Maryland's Ray Custis ran stride for stride with Stovall down the left sideline for an incomplete deep pass. "They saw a couple of corners at Maryland that may not be able to keep up. But that's a guy, Stovall, who has a tweaked hamstring, and you're trying to run him on a 'go' route."

FSU rushed for just 50 yards, with tailback Lorenzo Booker carrying the ball 13 times for 51 yards. Booker started because of an injury to Leon Washington. Booker has good speed but is less physical than Washington and isn't as effective running between the tackles.

After the game, both Bowdens said FSU did not enter the game intending to throw deep as much as it did. But Maryland's cornerbacks played man-to-man and aggressively pressed the receivers at the line, which led to FSU trying to throw deep along the sidelines.

"They simply played a defense that dared you to go deep," Bobby Bowden said. "All we've go to do is hit one of 'em, and it'd win the game."

Jeff Bowden, 44, stands by his play-calling

"We're going to have to just continue to improve on the edges," he said. "I'll get shot for saying that, but that game doesn't change. The last game doesn't change. My attitude toward the last game doesn't change."

Bowden tried different plays, too. On FSU's second possession, for example, Bowden called for a swing pass on second-and-4 to fullback James Coleman. The call would have worked -- Coleman was open at the first-down marker -- but Coleman dropped the pass from quarterback Wyatt Sexton.

In his four previous starts, Sexton had thrived on short- to mid-range passes and benefited from a strong running game, even though the FSU offense had not scored a first-half touchdown in any road game this season. The Seminoles also continually have been mystified by cornerback blitzes all year long. Such blitzes by Maryland, Bowden said, helped curtail FSU's arsenal of short passes, and Washington's absence also hurt.

Jamie Dukes, a former FSU and NFL offensive lineman, argues it is difficult to judge Bowden's tenure as offensive coordinator, which began in 2001."It's a little difficult to be critical of Jeff from one perspective. . . . He's only had one quarterback, really, to work with on a sustained basis. I think that because Chris [Rix], who has such great physical gifts, has been very careless with the ball," Dukes said.

Still, the close scrutiny of Bowden will continue. Fans also vented at Brad Scott and Mark Richt, Bowden's predecessors.

"I remember a guy, he had his Web site," said Richt, now coach at Georgia. "He was the president of the 'Evict Richt Club.' He just hated everything I did and was constantly criticizing. It wasn't just him. I had plenty of that. But if you're a play-caller, everybody always second-guesses what you do."

The second-guessing is worse for Bowden, if only because he is the son of the man who promoted him.

"It might be easier to criticize a coach's son," Jeff Bowden said. "Maybe it's easier. Maybe that's an easier target. I've just learned that you can't let it be a distraction. I didn't say it was easy. You can't let it affect what you do, how you coach, what you call. You just can't do that. You'll just have a hard time in this business, and if I want to stay in this business, I can't let it." (By Josh Robbins, Orlando Sentinel)

Bowden hasn't given Sexton full support

One of the moves was long overdue.

One could have waited.

And the third? It comes much, much, much too soon.

Florida State coach Bobby Bowden's decision to replace kicker Xavier Beitia with freshman Gary Cismesia should have happened weeks ago, of course - if not sooner.

Giving fullback James Coleman the start against Duke over B.J. Dean qualifies as a nice gesture, and probably is even well-deserved. It shouldn't make a difference against Duke, though.

But benching quarterback Wyatt Sexton for Chris Rix?

To borrow a phrase from President George W. Bush, having Rix back in the starting lineup for the rest of the season could result in "catastrophic success" for the Seminoles. (By Randy Beard, Tallahassee Democrat) View the entire article

All I can say is Dammit Bobby...


Monday, November 01, 2004
Cheerleader of the Week
Crystal, Washington Redskins Cheerleaders


Saturday, October 30, 2004
Dammit, Bobby!!!
Miami loses this evening but I couldn't enjoy it because you and your idiot son blew it in College Park earlier in the afternoon! I thought that the Chris Rix era was over in Tallahassee!!! IMO, leave Wyatt Sexton in the game and we win. If I'm wrong, he develops some more maturity. Instead, another Chris Rix disappointment and a post-season trip to The "Tire" Bowl. Wow, I'm sure those Golden Chiefs in Tallahassee will be all over that late December trip to Charlotte...

And better late than never...
Boston... good times never seemed so good!
Read The Sports Guy at ESPN.com's Page 2

TIDAL 11:43 PM

Monday, October 25, 2004
Heading west 2 games up
Sox, Schilling beat Cardinals, 6-2, in Game 2

It might have been the last Fenway Park game of the magical 2004 season. And if it was, there'll be a parade in Boston sometime before Election Day . . . perhaps the grandest celebration in 374 years of Hub history.

Curt Schilling, the gifted, gritty veteran who has given a whole new meaning to red sock, last night hurled Boston's Laughing Gas House Gang to a 6-2 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in the second game of the World Series. The Red Sox lead the best-of-seven series 2-0, and if they can win twice in the next three days at Busch Stadium, the Sox will have their first World Series championship since 1918.

In other words, put pink champagne on ice, but keep it corked. The Cardinals were 53-28 at home this year (plus 6-0 in the playoffs) and Red Sox Nation would do well to rememeber 1986, when the Sox won the first two games of the World Series at Shea Stadium only to lose four of the last five to the New York Mets. This is the Sox's first World Series since that fateful event.

The 37-year-old Schilling, who said he came to Boston to win a World Series, pitched six innings of four-hit, one-run (unearned) ball, working again while blood seeped into the white sanitary hose that covered his sutured right ankle. The surgical procedure, designed to stabilize a dislocated tendon in Schilling's right ankle, worked for the second time in less than a week.

"It was the most unbelievable day of my life," said Schilling. "So many things happened. I woke up at 7 o'clock this morning. I couldn't walk. I couldn't move. I don't know what had happened, but I knew when I woke up that there was a problem. I wasn't going to go out on the mound the way I felt . . . I don't know the medical science behind it . . . I honest-to-God did not think I was going to take the ball today." (By Dan Shaughnessy, The Boston Globe) View the entire article

Cheerleader of the Week
Brianne, Philadelphia Eagles Cheerleaders


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