Howard_T's profile

Name: Howard Titus
Location: Nashua, NH
ZIP: 03062
Gender: Old Alpha Male, hoping no young stud steals the herd.
Member since: April 08, 2006
Last visit: May 27, 2017

Howard_T has posted 38 links and 3321 comments to SportsFilter and 3 links and 265 comments to the Locker Room.

Sports Bio

Native Bostonian, with all attendant baggage still attached. Braves fan until they left for Milwaukee (yes, I'm that old), then it was the BoSox by default. Love all sports, but the favorites are baseball, hockey, football, and hoop, in that order. Used to umpire baseball at the Babe Ruth, Legion, and High School level. At my age, there are too many sports memories to really pick a favorite. Maybe it is Bill Russell's first game in Boston Garden. Another is the time when I was just back from Viet Nam and my dad took me to a Bruins game. This was in the glory days of Orr. Toronto was the opponent, they started 5 defensemen (really), and the fight started within the first minute or so.

Recent Links

Aviation Loses a Legend: This might have only a tangential relation to sports, but Bob Hoover's long time promotion of the Reno Air Races and his former captaincy on the US Aerobatic Team should qualify. Bob Hoover died on October 25 at the age of 94. He was a former Naval aviator, aerobatic performer, and corporate test pilot for North American Aviation. One of his "signature" performances was his demonstration of the capabilities of the North American "Shrike" Commander, a variant of the twin turboprop corporate Aero Commander business aircraft. He would take the aircraft through a series of maneuvers, and for the climax he would kill both engines, feather the props, execute a full loop, and land the aircraft precisely "on the numbers" (that is, the numbers at the end of the runway). His skills were unmatched. My working life was spent for the most part being in, on, under, and generally around aircraft, and Mr. Hoover was one of the giants I respected greatly.

posted by Howard_T to other at 04:17 PM on October 26 - 3 comments

NCAA Men's Ice Hockey Pairings are Announced: The "Shivering (not Sweet) Sixteen" for 2016 have been selected. Quinnipiac (1), East Regional; St. Cloud State (2), West Regional; North Dakota (3), Midwest Regional; and Providence, Northeast Regional, are the top seeded teams. Northeastern has to be the "Cinderella" team, having overcome a 1-11-2 start to go 21-2-3 in its next 26 games to finish 22-13-5. The regionals start on March 26, and the Frozen 4 begins on April 7 in Tampa, FL.

posted by Howard_T to hockey at 10:12 PM on March 20 - 1 comment

Montreal Canadiens Jean Beliveau dead at 83: Montreal Canadiens have reported that Hockey Hall-of-Fame member and Montreal legend Jean Beliveau has passed away at age 83. Beliveau played 20 seasons for Canadiens, winning 10 Stanley Cup Championships, 5 of them coming when Beliveau wore the captain's C. He also served as a member of the team's management, earning 7 more cups along the way.

posted by Howard_T to hockey at 12:26 AM on December 03 - 2 comments

The Big Guys Get Their Way: The NCAA Board of Directors has given the 5 big conferences what amounts to near autonomy to set their own rules. It appears that football teams will now be ranked from Division 3 through FCS and FBS, with the largest 5 conferences in a new division called the Juggernaut Division.

posted by Howard_T to general at 11:26 PM on August 07 - 0 comments

Celtics Guard, Lakers Exec Bill Sharman Dies: Bill Sharman, high-scoring guard for the Boston Celtics, and later coach and executive with the Los Angeles Lakers has died at age 87. In the championship years with the Celtics, the mantra "Russell to Cousy to Sharman", describing the Boston fast break, was the equivalent of baseball's "Tinker to Evers to Chance".

posted by Howard_T to basketball at 03:15 PM on October 25 - 0 comments

Recent Comments

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

Sometimes a bad call by an umpire against your team works out in your favor. The Boston Red Sox tied a major league record for strikeouts in one game lst night, but it took an erroneous replay decision to set it up. My take is that for the plate umpire to see a batter being hit on the foot is very difficult, since you are often blocked by the catcher. The 3rd base umpire would have the clearest view, but he is positioned close to 100 feet away, and unless it is crystal clear, he will not usually make such a ruling. Chalk this one up to MLB's error.

posted by Howard_T at 10:40 PM on May 26

Left-for-Dead Celtics Beat Cavaliers in Game 3

Wife and I are off to game 5 tonight. Will it be a death watch over an expiring team or a miraculous recovery to earn them another appointment with the Grim Reaper? My prediction in the pick-'em was Cleveland in 6. My Celtics will reward my faith and support by hanging on tonight. If not? Well, at least it's an opportunity to drink some expensive TD Garden beer, see the rest of the season ticket holder group in Section 316, and send the team off for the last time this season.

posted by Howard_T at 05:00 PM on May 25

SportsFilter: The Thursday Huddle

For those in dire need of something to commemorate.

posted by Howard_T at 04:54 PM on May 25

Left-for-Dead Celtics Beat Cavaliers in Game 3

We were having a late supper at home (beef with snow peas, bok choy on the side) and watching the game as we ate. At the half, I decided to clear the table and do the dishes. (My wife doesn't know how good she has it.) By the time I was finished, it was a 2-point game, and wife was screaming her head off. The local talking heads are all talking up Marcus Smart, Avery Bradley, and a few others, but some credit has to go to the coach. The plays he drew up at the end of the game worked perfectly. Both plays were such that they put confidence in players who had either not been shooting well in the game or had not had a major role throughout the playoffs.

posted by Howard_T at 08:12 PM on May 22

SportsFilter: The Saturday Huddle

This guy probably showed up hoping the Cubs were playing. For the record, I have never had this happen when I was umpiring a game.

posted by Howard_T at 12:48 AM on May 21

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em: Third Round

It's time to make the prediction for the Eastern Conference and to take another look at the West. First, in the West, I said that Kawhi Leonard's defense would be the factor in the length of the series. Not that I will get any points for it, but Leonard goes down, Warriors go on an 18-0 run, and win a game in which they trailed by 25. No way this series is going past 5, and likely it will end in 4.

The game at TD Garden last night was all that a game 7 should be. It was close for the better part of 3 quarters, and then the Wizards' emphasis on double teaming Thomas began to leave too many holes for others (Olynyk for one) to exploit. Heavy minutes in the first half on the Washington starters was a contributing factor to their legs beginning to go late in the game. The crowd was loud and rowdy, the atmosphere was electric, and it was a great evening. Now Celtics have to face Cleveland. This one will bring a lot of people back to reality, but it won't be boring. Cleveland will win the series, but Celtics will make it interesting. Cleveland in 6, LeBron James to lead the scoring, and LeBron James to haul in the most rebounds.

posted by Howard_T at 01:20 AM on May 17

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em: Third Round

I will leave the Eastern Conference predictions until I have begun to heal the very sore throat I will have on Tuesday morning. A game 7 in Boston is unlike nearly any other sporting experience. Yours truly and his son will be in Section 316, Row 5, Seats 9 and 10. It will be intense.

Warriors vs Spurs will not be the walkover it might appear. Much will depend on the health of Kawhi Leonard and his ability to defend Curry and company. The ultimate result is predictable, but the number of games and the props are not. Let's go with Golden State in 6, Leading Scorer Curry, Glass Cleaner Green. +1 +1 +1

posted by Howard_T at 11:17 PM on May 13


everyone has to play on both sides of the ball with no substitutions

This was the rule in NCAA football until 1941. As is the case in soccer, if you came out of the game, you stayed out of the game. Because of the shortage of skilled college players due to WW II (they were volunteering for military service), free substitution was allowed. The NFL followed suit in 1943. For the 1953 season the NCAA changed the rules to allow only 1 player to be substituted after each play. "General" Robert Neyland, then Tennessee head coach, hailed this as the end of "chickenshit football". This lasted until the 1964 season when unlimited substitution was once again allowed. During the era of limited substitution, the service academies were among the more successful teams. This was due to the physical conditioning required year round of the Cadets and Midshipmen, thus giving them more stamina than those who got into shape for the season and neglected conditioning otherwise.

posted by Howard_T at 12:28 AM on May 07

SportsFilter: The Friday Huddle

I said that I thought of it as an alert.

I might think of it as an opportunity. It reminds me of a time about 48 years ago when a group of us, wanting to get out of the heat and humidity of Subic Bay, Philippines, decided to take advantage of a long weekend and drive up to Baguio, which is in the mountains north of Manila, We played a little bit of golf at the course that was maintained by the Air Force and stayed in the guest houses at what was then Camp John Hay. In the evening it was party time, so we decided on rum and coke. The problem was that the only bottle of rum the Class 6 (liquor) store had was Bacardi 151 proof. The 4 of us finished it in one evening, and trust me, there was no golf (and damn little physical movement) the next day. I would imagine that 190 proof Bombay Sapphire might have a similar effect.

posted by Howard_T at 11:00 PM on May 05

SportsFilter: The Wednesday Huddle

I am watching the Red Sox vs Orioles game. There have been some "unpleasantries" between the two teams as a result of Manny Machado's questionable slide that injured Dustin Pedroia and the subsequent trading of batters being thrown at. It grew to the point that MLB called both clubs and warned that discipline would follow any continuation.

So tonight the Orioles' starter lost a slow curve that hit Xander Bogaerts on the hip. Immediate ejection followed, the Orioles were irate, and the Boston announcers were all over the plate umpire for not considering that there was no intent. While I agree that there was no intent, MLB put the umpire into a position where he could not use his own judgement. The problem is that if you let that one go, there is likely to be retaliation, and someone might get hurt. It's damned if you do and damned if you don't.

posted by Howard_T at 08:51 PM on May 03

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em: Second Round

Now that we know what tbd stands for, it's time to make the final choice. The real question is whether or not Utah can steal a game from Warriors. I think a lot of us are going to look really dumb if Utah wins the series. Golden State in 5, Curry +1

posted by Howard_T at 10:04 PM on April 30

SportsFilter: The Sunday Huddle

Church of Seeing the Future or something?

Actually I go to the Church of the Good Shepherd (Episcopal) in New Hampshire, where I am a member of the Vestry, a Lay Eucharistic Minister, and a Verger. Our Priest in Charge for the past 31 years is retiring in another month, so there have been lots of meetings, conferences, and such while the succession is planned, and I couldn't avoid them today.The timing was such that I was able to watch the whole game on TV. As far as prognostication about the Celtics is concerned, I have watched the team since I was 11 (1952-53 season), and have paid a lot of attention to the season series between these 2 teams. Both teams play hard, on the edge of the envelope, and collisions are inevitable. I really didn't expect a flying tooth, though.

From about the halfway point in the 1st quarter, Boston started hitting on its shots. A few treys opened up the paint, and they began to get the ball down inside for some easy stuff. The defense turned it up in the 3rd quarter, and Washington just couldn't withstand it. For a good part of the 3rd quarter Celtics had Thomas, Bradley, Smart, Crowder, and Horford on the floor. That's 4 of the best defensive players in the league playing with one hot scorer. It made all the difference.

If you get the NBA channel, they will probably replay the game. It is worth sitting through.

posted by Howard_T at 09:53 PM on April 30

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em: Second Round

Let's start in the East:

I will miss my first Celtics home playoff game in 3 years tomorrow. Church stuff has me tied up. My son will use the tickets. Nonetheless, I remain faithful to the Green. Boston in 7, John Wall There will be blood.

Cavaliers proved themselves against a game Indiana team. The games were close, but there really was no doubt. Cleveland in 5, LeBron James +1 +1

To the West:

The class will really be evident in this series. Spurs have it. San Antonio in 6, Kawhi Leonard +2

Golden State vs TBD pick is TBD.

posted by Howard_T at 12:56 AM on April 30

NBA Playoff Pick 'Em Starts Today

Game 5 of Celtics vs Bulls. This is when the teams have begun to really hate each other. TD Garden is just about full, and the crowd is into it big time. A fun night is in store.

posted by Howard_T at 09:01 PM on April 26

ESPN laying off 100, including on-air personalities

Forgot in my comment above the NFL, NBA, and MLB networks. Who the hell needs you, ESPN.

posted by Howard_T at 08:43 PM on April 26