Soccer Poet

general : Captain Morgan : Monday, April 22, 2013

I started this entry a while back, but for some reason I just kept holding back on completing it.  I really didn’t know why until a few days ago.  It’ll be pretty easy for you to connect the dots. I spent last weekend on the left coast, taking in some ECNL action as part of my recruiting duties. It’s interesting, the perception ‘outsiders’ have of our job. When I say I was in San Diego, the person I’m speaking with immediately gives a heavy [...]

general : Urban Legend and a Good Resume : Saturday, March 23, 2013

It was a U-12 game. A striker had checked back from an offside position to receive the ball at her feet. The assistant referee (a.k.a linesman) raised his flag to signal the offside infraction and the play was whistled dead.  Immediately some parents who were sharing the AR’s sideline began protesting with an array of snide and patronizing remarks.  One of them figured he was obligated to point out that the offside call is contingent upon when the ball is played. Because they [...]

general : Chapter 51 : Friday, January 25, 2013

So not much happening on the soccer front, unless of course you count a 9 year-old hitting a ridiculous BICYCLE KICK. Here’s the thing… most fans are just going to go Wow! Look at that bicycle kick! But soccer people, particularly coaches, are going to appreciate the entire maneuver because this little prodigy actually does three very advanced things here. He wedges himself between the ball and the opponent to protect the ball. Trust me, that’s not just by accident. [...]

general : Dogs and Cats : Monday, December 10, 2012

Well look who’s been slacking again. Same ol’ story. Yeah, yeah, YAWN. You know, I’m not even sure if I should say this out loud, but the blog has been MIA for so long I doubt anyone checks in these days, so I’m gonna take my chances and confess: The worst thing that happened to me as a writer was publishing that book. I once heard a story about dog racing that stuck with me; if any of those greyhounds ever catch the electronic rabbit (let’s say the rabbit [...]

general : One Point and Nine and a Half Months : Monday, October 29, 2012

"I promise you one thing. A lot of good will come out of this. You will never see any player in the entire country play as hard as I will play the rest of the season. You will never see someone push the rest of the team as hard as I will push everybody the rest of the season. You will never see a team play harder than we will the rest of the season." Tim Tebow Let me begin by correcting any misguided assumptions about the hiatus of this blog. You’ve probably noticed that its absence [...]

general : The Hummingbird : Saturday, April 28, 2012

Today’s been kind of exciting. To summarize, Izzy scored a goal this morning and then sucked down a dozen steamed clams at dinner. So she’s just like me. Except for the part about scoring a goal. Okay, it wasn’t Izzy’s first goal – she scored one while I was driving to Daytona a couple weeks back, but this is the first time that I got to see her score so that’s milestone territory as far as I’m concerned. And to be fair, she needed to score that [...]

general : Funny Game : Saturday, April 21, 2012

Funny game, soccer. That’s a pretty common expression in coaching circles and in short it means that things are not always as they appear, particularly if you’re only looking at the scoreboard. Chelsea’s 1-0 win over Barcelona might lead one to believe that Chelsea was the better team on Wednesday. But a video of that match would be all the evidence a jury would ever need to convict our sport of deceptive practices. Despite overwhelming the hosts in every conceivable [...]

general : To Play or Not to Play : Thursday, April 19, 2012

A few months back an old high school friend emailed me with a dilemma. US Soccer announced that its Development Academy was moving to a ten-month schedule and that players on these teams wouldn’t be allowed to participate on their high school teams. I am told that my friend’s son is a very good (but not great) player. He might earn a college soccer scholarship, but he’ll never play for the national team. He’s not sure if playing academy soccer is worth missing out on the [...]

general : The Big Sigh : Wednesday, April 18, 2012

My best friend, Scott Arnold, recently told me that I was the second-most nostalgic person he knew, next to his brother. Okay, so I was obviously disturbed about the runner-up finish, but I decided that there was no shame in a silver medal for this particular event. On Saturday morning I left Athens and headed 400 miles south to Daytona Beach to clear out the last few possessions collecting dust in the garage of a house I hadn’t slept in since 2007. I had to figure out what I wanted to [...]

general : Bubba : Wednesday, January 25, 2012

First of all, congrats to Jamie Pollock who has been picked up by the Atlanta Beat of WPS!  Nobody has ever worked harder for it.  Anything Jamie gets, Jamie's earned, and we're all real proud of her. Okay, if you’re a follower of Georgia Bulldog soccer, you may have already read the article about how we poached Chika Ibiam from the UGA women’s club team last spring and convinced her to walk on to the varsity team for the fall. By all means we knew Chika was a [...]

general : No Bananas On The Boat! : Wednesday, December 14, 2011

I met my new accountant today. He stopped by the office this afternoon and on my honor I’m almost positive he was looking for a hidden camera. After ten minutes with me he had to be wondering how he managed to find yet another yahoo who never took an accounting class (and barely passed math). I think he’s categorizing me as his good deed for the holiday season. God speed, my friend. So in other news, I’m pretty sure I’ve discovered the origins of the Monkey of Day. [...]

general : Tiny Little Soccer Men (who sometimes lie) : Tuesday, November 29, 2011

As our bus rolled back into Athens on a cold, gray and otherwise unremarkable afternoon, I took a deep breath and accepted the annual reality that another season had officially come and gone. Our three and a half month frenzy has, with neither notice nor fanfare, dissolved like a solitary snowflake, leaving behind nothing but the hollowness of a day without purpose.  Inspiring, right? It’s my least favorite day of the year.  Well, it’s one of two, but both for the same [...]

general : Hunting The Elusive Road Sweep : Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Tis the season… the Halloween season that is, a.k.a. my second favorite holiday.  A few weeks back Izzy decided she wanted to be a Georgia Bulldog soccer player for Halloween and quickly established a list of five candidates.  She considered Lex, Sooz, Torri and Eddy before finally deciding on Chewy.  So yesterday when Izzy got home from school, a few of Chewy’s old jerseys were laid out on Izzy’s bed as a surprise.  It’s a little recipe I like to [...]

general : Holy Comebacks! : Wednesday, October 12, 2011

This week I spent $90 so Izzy can take ukulele lessons.  So that’s fabulous.  I imagine the shine will be off that apple in a day and a half and nine years from now I’ll be trying to sell a ukulele at a yard sale.  Then again, the little monster has a habit of surprising me and she really is a born performer, so maybe this will be the start of her burgeoning career as a pop star. At least that’s how she tells it. I know the entries have fallen off lately but, [...]

general : UNC-Greensboro and The Penguin : Monday, September 19, 2011

Last night Beth was working so Izzy and I were gonna have ourselves a Daddy Delight Dinner: thick ribeye steaks, steamed clams, and some grilled vegetables that we could throw out later.  But first there was a little issue of math homework that needed tending to.  Seeing Izzy’s allergy to homework, it’s fascinating that we’re not blood relatives and I’m sure my parents are enjoying some sense of cosmic justice about that.  Izzy is a Level Five expert at [...]