Chicago Sun-Times
A hearty stew of offbeat sports and pop culture.

December 2010 Archives

sepp-blatter-gay.jpgGay rights groups are clamoring for an apology from FIFA president Sepp Blatter, who said that gay fans should "refrain from any sexual activities" while in Qatar for the 2022 World Cup.

Homosexual behavior is illegal in that country.

Juris Lavrikovs, communications director for the European branch of the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association, said the comments were "very unfortunate and have left people deeply offended."

"This is not a joke, this is a matter of life and death to people," Lavrikovs said. "Qatar and more than 70 other countries in the world still criminalize individuals for homosexual relationships, and some countries even punish them by death sentence.

The incident is more fuel for those who believe staging soccer's biggest event in a country seen by many to have a spotty human rights record is a mistake.

Blatter himself isn't exactly the most popular person in the world right now either.

Sal-Alosi-trip.jpgNew York Jets strength and conditioning coach Sal Alosi's knee brought out the swift arm of justice from his team.

Alosi, who was caught intentionally tripping up Miami Dolphins' Nolan Carroll on the sidelines during Sunday's game, was suspended without pay for the remainder of the season. Additionally, he was fined $25,000.

Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum said the team spoke with the league, and there will be no further discipline.

"Hopefully we're going to learn from what happened yesterday and take full responsibility for it," Tannenbaum said. "We're really disappointed with Sal, with what happened, and we're going to hold him accountable for his actions."

Alosi was standing in a line with several inactive players when the incident happened, but he, coach Rex Ryan and Tannenbaum dismissed speculation that any such behavior is coached or planned.
After Tashard Choice's Dallas Cowboys lost to hated rival Philadelphia last night, the running back was captured on national television asking for -- and receiving -- Michael Vick's autograph.

People got upset.

So Choice took to Twitter to defend himself.

"Listen y'all I know vick. That glove was for my nephew who is 3. Not for me," he tweeted. "I don't care abbout that we all exchange autographs. That's so stupid for people to get mad at.

"vick is his [Choice's nephew] fav player. Has nothing to do with how I play on da feel. Y'all are a trip foreal"

Vick said this was "probably" the first time something like this has happened to him, but signed because Choice is a "great" guy.

This morning, Choice addressed the issue once more.

"If its anybody that cares about winning and the d cowboys its me. I apologize to the people it was just an innocent jesture for my nephew," he explained.

Choice is a native Georgian and played at Georgia Tech while Vick was with the Atlanta Falcons.

metrodome-snow.jpgThe National Football League was thrown into a last-minute state of flux early Sunday morning when the Minneapolis Metrodome turned all one of those end-of-the-world-disaster movies into captured reality.

Heavy snows caused the roof of the Vikings' home to cave in, blanketing the field with snow. If you haven't seen the footage yet, it's unbelievable.

<a href="" target="_new" title="">NFL on FOX: Metrodome collapse</a>

Yeah, when something like this happens, you're not going to be able to play a football game in that facility within a couple of hours. That sent the league scrambling for venues to host the Vikings-Giants game, already pushed back to Monday night.

The initial thought was shifting it over to TFC Bank Stadium, the newish outdoor home of the Minnesota Golden Gophers. The only problem with that is the Giants, thinking they'd be playing in a climate-controlled dome, didn't bring any of their cold gear. It's not like Kevin Boss can pick up a Size Whatever He Wears cleat at the airport when he arrives.

Luckily, Detroit came through. Shortly before kickoff of the early-afternoon games, it was announced that the game would be played tonight at Ford Field.

The best part about this bizarre scenario?

No, it's not the beleaguered city hosting its first Monday night game in nearly a decade or the all-around oddness factor of it all.

It's that tickets are free.

Should be an interesting, interesting scene.

Kansas City Chiefs lineman Barry Richardson was caught red-handed shoving members of his coaching staff during the third quarter yesterday. Someone recording in the vicinity of a talkative child provides us with the tape.

Surprisingly, coach Todd Haley said he had no problem with Richardson's sideline tirade.

"What you're seeing out our guys, and what's an exciting thing to me as a head coach is we have a lot guys who care," he said.

Let's hope more intense forms of violence are not sought out in order to prove one's level of passion for the game.
ben-roethlisberger-nose.jpgBen Roethlisberger is officially tougher than Marcia Brady.

The Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback broke his nose on national television last night, but wouldn't let a little hiccup like that ruin his good time.

"I just knew it was bleeding, and then when I got to the sideline I could tell just by the look on everyone's face that something wasn't right,'' said Roethlisberger, who took a shot to his schnoz from the left hand of Ravens defensive tackle Haloti Ngata on the Steelers opening possession. "I looked real quick. I don't know, I look like I just went 12 rounds with Pacquiao."

Roethlisberger played through the pain with a blood-splattered jersey, and eventually tossed a game-winning nine-yard touchdown pass to Isaac Redman to give the Steelers a crucial divisional victory over the Baltimore Ravens.

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