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Yankee fan Greg Cronin believes his Northeastern team, Red Sox have lots in common

02.07.11 at 10:55 pm ET
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The question posed to Northeastern coach Greg Cronin seemed innocent and straightforward enough. His team just beat Harvard, 4-0, to advance to the Beanpot final next Monday and a chance to end 23 years of frustration in the annual February Boston tournament.

So, what would it mean to finally win the Beanpot with a win on Feb. 14?

“It is funny you ask that question because I was thinking about two years ago in the final, and talk about goofy plays, pucks bouncing up in the air,” Cronin began. “The BU-Northeastern game was a great game. BU scores three shorthanded goals and a power play goal. That just doesn’€™t happen in the Beanpot. We end up losing that game. Last year, we played a terrific game against BU in the first round. Again [Alex] Chaisson shoots the puck and it squeaks through the shirt and trickles into the net, just as [Mike] McLaughlin’€™s did. Unfortunately, those are the memories for a lot of the Northeastern people over the last twenty years’€¦near misses.”

Then it got interesting.

“I will give you an example,” Cronin said in an effort to back up his comments about years of frustration. “When I got here six years ago, the program was’€¦ well it just needed a lot of work form inter-structurally and in addition to me getting the fans back. The fans come in when you win, so we have started to win incrementally. We started to fill the building and last year we had good crowds. Now this year, they have stopped showing up and I think you see a reflection of of the fans when you are on the bench and you look into that left corner, and there wasn’€™t nearly as many black shirts as there was a year ago.”

Well, you can understand a coach reaching out to his student body and imploring them to support their team through good times and bad. After all, Cronin knows his team is a still-disappointing 9-11-6 after having much bigger aspirations entering this season.

But then he finished with a bang. Or a thud, if you’re a Red Sox fan.

“I am not a baseball fan,” Cronin said. “Believe it or not, I like the Yankees over the Red Sox, don’€™t kill me now. But I liked the Yankees because they would always win and the Red Sox would lose. I think we have a little bit of the mentality of when are they going to win this damn thing. And they get sick of it and I don’€™t blame them.

“But, this is twice in the last three years that we are in the final, and I know we are going to have a tremendous opponent to play against. So to answer you are question with a period, they would have to get both the NUPD and the Boston police on our campus if we won.”

The police might actually be more useful for Cronin the next time he shows his face at Fenway.

Read More: Boston Red Sox, Greg Cronin, MLB, New York Yankees

Northeastern handles Harvard to get another shot at Beanpot

02.07.11 at 8:03 pm ET
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Poor Ted Donato. His Harvard Crimson can’t catch a break this year. And their lack of scoring has a lot to do with it. That was the case again Monday night when the coach watched as his players were blanked by Northeastern, 4-0, in the opening round of the Beanpot at TD Garden.

His team fell to 4-18-0 this season. They have lost 10-of-11 and in all but one of the 10 defeats they have scored two or fewer goals. Monday night was the third time in seven games they’ve been shutout.

Meanwhile, Mike McLaughlin scored the game’s first two goals and Chris Rawlings turned away all 41 shots as Northeastern beat Harvard Monday night in the opening game of the opening round of the 2011 Beanpot championship at TD Garden.

It was Northeastern’s first Beanpot shutout since they blanked Harvard, 2-0, in the 1997 consolation contest.

McLaughlin scored his second 1:47 into the second period to allow Northeastern to stake control. Steve Silva and Brodie Reid also scored for the Huskies, who improve to 9-11-6, advance to the title game for the second time in three years and for the seventh time since 1988, the last year they won the Beanpot. They will play the winner of the nightcap between the 2010 champ Boston College and Boston University.

Read More: beanpot, Chris Rawlings, Harvard hockey, Mike McLaughlin

Displaced Super Bowl fans offered tickets to next year’s game

02.07.11 at 1:17 pm ET
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The 400 fans who arrived at the Super Bowl only to be told there were no seats for them will be given tickets to next year’s game in Indianapolis, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell announced Monday. The fans also received three times the value of their $800 tickets, free food and merchandise, and access to the field after Sunday’s game.

“We apologize to those fans that were impacted,” Goodell said in a statement. “We are going to work with them and we are going to do better in the future. We will certainly do a thorough review and get to the bottom of why it call occurred, but we take full responsibility for that as putting on this game.”

The league acknowledged that it was aware of problems with the temporary seating it was installing, and workers hustled until shortly before gametime to finish the project and get it approved by city officials.

“At the end, we just ran out of time,” NFL executive vice president Eric Grubman said Monday.

Read More: Roger Goodell, Rumor Mill, Super Bowl fans,

Super Bowl ad creator wins $1 million bonus

02.07.11 at 1:08 pm ET
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The man who designed the Doritos “pug attack” ad won a $1 million bonus and a contract to create an ad for next year’s game for having the highest-rated commercial on USA Today’s Super Bowl ad meter.

J.R. Burningham, a freelance editor and web designer, entered the Doritos Crash the Super Bowl ad contest. He was given $25,000 for having his ad selected, although he still wasn’t sure if it would make it to TV, as only three of the five finalists had their videos aired.

Burningham was invited to the game and watched the commercial from the sponsor’s booth. “We didn’t actually know that the commercial would play,” he told CNBC’s Darren Rovell. “The moment it did, we went crazy. … We saw the first frame and that was it. I don’t remember anything after that.”

The Utah native said he made the commercial for just $500. “We rented a camera and a couple of lenses and food for the crew,” he said. “Everybody worked for free.”

Read More: J.R. Burningham, Rumor Mill, Super Bowl commercial,

Super Bowl TV ratings set record

02.07.11 at 12:35 pm ET
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The Packers‘ victory over the Steelers on Sunday night surpassed last year’s record-setting Super Bowl in the Nielsen Co.’s preliminary ratings measurement of big cities, according to The Associated Press.

Last year’s matchup between the Saints and Colts became the most-watched television program in U.S. history 106.5 million viewers.

Nielsen didn’t immediately have a viewership estimate for this year’s game, but an overnight measurement of the nation’s 56 largest media markets showed a 3 percent increase over last year.

The game also had a 71 share, meaning 71 percent of televisions being watched during that time slot were on the Super Bowl. That’s the highest for the big game since 1982.

Read More: Rumor Mill,

Report: Titans expected to name Mike Munchak coach

02.07.11 at 12:32 pm ET
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The Titans are expected to name Mike Munchak their next coach, possibly as early as Monday, according to The Tennessean.

Munchak has been the Titans’ offensive line coach for the past 14 years. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 2001 for his 12-year career as an offensive lineman with the Oilers.

The Titans also interviewed offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger, Falcons offensive coordinator Mike Mularkey and Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell during their search for Jeff Fisher‘s replacement.

Read More: Jeff Fisher, Mike Munchak, Rumor Mill,

Report: Jets to use franchise tag on linebacker David Harris

02.07.11 at 11:25 am ET
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The Jets have 17 free agents and only one franchise tag. According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, they’ve decided to use it on linebacker David Harris.

Harris had 99 tackles and three sacks this season and was voted team MVP by his teammates. He is the last of the team’s “Core Four” players to not get a new contract. Cornerback Darrelle Revis, center Nick Mangold and offensive tackle D’Brickashaw Ferguson all got new deals before the season.

The players’ union plans to battle the use of the franchise tag in labor negotiations, but Jeff Pash, the league’s lead negotiator, said last week that he expects the franchise tag to continue to operate in the same way it has.

Other notable free agents for the Jets include wide receivers Santonio Holmes and Braylon Edwards and cornerback Antonio Cromartie.

Read More: braylon edwards, David Harris, Rumor Mill, Santonio Holmes

Cardinals reportedly talk with Larry Fitzgerald about quarterback possibilities

02.07.11 at 11:25 am ET
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With Pro Bowl wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald entering the final year of his contract, the Cardinals know they have to keep their star happy if they hope to re-sign him. That road to happiness starts with finding a quarterback.

The team has asked Fitzgerald for his opinion on which quarterback the team should trade for or sign, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

Schefter reports that Fitzgerald’s first recommendation was to trade for Eagles backup Kevin Kolb. He also mentioned Ravens backup Marc Bulger, who will be a free agent this offseason.

Read More: Kevin Kolb, Larry Fitzgerald, Marc Bulger, Rumor Mill

Report: Jon Bon Jovi in talks to buy part of Falcons

02.07.11 at 10:21 am ET
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Rock star Jon Bon Jovi has been in negotiations with Falcons owner Arthur Blank to purchase 15 percent of the franchise for $150 million, according to ESPN’s Chris Mortensen.

Blank acknowledged the talks Sunday, but he said they were unlikely to produce a partnership with Bon Jovi and that he did not think they were newsworthy.

Bon Jovi has previous experience as the owner of the Arena Football League’s Philadelphia Soul from 2004-09.

Read More: Arthur Blank, Jon Bon Jovi, Rumor Mill,

Rumor of Jon Gruden to Eagles ‘ridiculous’

02.07.11 at 10:19 am ET
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Sunday night, a wild rumor surfaced claiming that Jon Gruden was going to replace Andy Reid as Eagles coach as early as Tuesday.

Monday morning, ESPN’s Adam Schefter shot it down, tweeting, Was told last night by 3 separate people, “ridiculous,” “impossible,” “no.”

Reid is still under contract with the Eagles and doesn’t appear to be going anywhere soon.

Read More: Adam Schefter, Andy Reid, Jon Gruden, Rumor Mill