NFL Football: A Premium Product Going Downhill

What can you say about the ending to the Packers/Seahawks game last night?  Pathetic.  So much effort wasted as the replacement referees simply decided the game after 60 minutes.

Anyone who has ever played (or watched) football could clearly see that Jennings (Packers’ DB) caught the ball.  Tate (Seahawks WR) had one hand on the ball and then reached over the shoulder of Jennings to put a second hand on it after the players had gone to the ground. 

One referee saw it clearly and signaled for a touchback.  The other referee, who somehow ended up getting his way, ran into the picture completely clueless, looking for the signal of the other referee.  When he saw his hands go up, he tried to copy and called it a touchdown.  However, the first referee’s hands were going up to signal a touchback, not a touchdown. 

Denying Jennings and the Packers of this interception was not only a disgrace to the game, but was undeniably ridiculous as video evidence clearly showed that he made the catch.

The NFL needs to come to an agreement with the real referees and get them back on the field.  The longer they leave these morons on the field, the higher the price for the real refs is going to be.  It’s obvious to everyone (except Roger Goodell) that these guys truly cannot be replaced.  Pay them and move on.

The legitimacy of the game is spiraling downhill as the referees are no longer simply making ridiculous calls that can be laughed at in post-game shows, but deciding the outcome of games.

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Is Customer Service a Thing of the Past?

One of my biggest pet peeves is poor customer service.  I believe it is a right of any customer to receive courtesy and service.  Unfortunately, I see less and less of this each day.  Don’t get me wrong.  I’m not saying that there aren’t businesses out there that treat their customers with decency and respect, because I know there are.  I make an effort to acknowledge great service whenever I can, whether it be in the form of a tip, a compliment to a manager, or simply a thank you.

Some recent events have caused me severe grief in this department.

First, let’s start with Sprint, with whom I’ve done business for the past 10 years.  Last July, I renewed my Sprint contract and brought my girlfriend onto my plan.  We bought phones at a discounted price.  Until recently, she has had no issues with her phone.  She is able to surf the web quickly and easily.  I, on the other hand, have never received data service on my phone.  I pay for it, but it has never worked.  I’ve discussed the issue with Sprint 5 times, asking them to sell me a new phone.  Notice I said sell, not give.  I told them that I was willing to pay the price that new customers are paying, but I refused to pay the $700 they wanted to charge me for a phone. 

Their customer service reps were so bad last week, and so rude, that I hung up the phone and went straight to AT&T and switched my service.  They ignored me for almost a year, but once I switched, Sprint all of a sudden cares so much about making me happy that I get emails from their CEO, Dan Hesse every day asking me why I left and how they can get me back.  I know these are automatically generated emails but why were they not generated when I called multiple times with an issue instead of after I’ve taken my business elsewhere?

Next, I had a lovely encounter with FedEx.  I had a package delivered when I was out of town.  When I checked the tracking number, it showed as “delivered.”  However, it wasn’t at my apartment, and I didn’t have the usual notice saying that it was delivered to the leasing office.  I looked further into the details of the tracking.  There were three line items in the registry.  First, “unable to deliver…resident not home.”  Next, “unable to deliver…leasing office closed.”  Finally, “delivered to address other than recipient.”  This one confused me a bit, so I called FedEx.

The customer service rep first tells me that it was delivered to my leasing office.  I asked him why it would then say “unable to deliver…leasing office closed.”   He said, “oh, what is your address?”  I told him and he said, “it was delivered to a different address.”  I said “Great, that’s what it says online as well.  Where was it delivered?”  He said he couldn’t tell me.  I asked why not.  He said “I can’t give out addresses.” 

“Okay” I said, “so you can deliver my property to an address that it was not sent to, but you can’t tell me where?” 

He went on to tell me that the only thing he could do was file a claim with the local FedEx office.  A manager would then interview the driver, determine where the package is, and call me to let me know.

“Give me the address that it was delivered to” I said, “and I can save you a lot of time interviewing a driver to determine where it is.” 

It doesn’t sound like rocket science to me.  If you have an address, why would you waste time interviewing a driver? 

Needless to say that I still don’t have my package and have yet to hear from the “manager.”

Is J.J. Watt the Best Defensive Player in the NFL?

I read an article this morning about J.J. Watt being the best defensive player in the NFL. Well, he definitely could be. While I wouldn’t make that argument just yet, I would argue that he is easily in the top 5.

Watt is definitely on a tear and is by far my favorite player in the NFL right now. He’s got a ridiculously bright future ahead of him and I have no doubt that 20 years from now he’ll be a first ballot Hall of Famer.

It is early in the season to start crowning titles of best player. That being said, I will go down this path…

I can make arguments for 5 or so players that are better than J.J. Watt at this point. However, I cannot name one that is definitely better, and I don’t think anyone else can either.

He’s in the conversation for the top spot, but let’s wait a few more weeks before we give him the crown.

Gotta love the little guys!

As a college football fan, you have to love when your team is ranked #2 in the nation, and fans of unranked teams are talking trash.

LSU narrowly escaped with a victory this weekend as they edged out Auburn 12-10. The narrow margin of victory has caused the Tigers to drop a spot in the rankings, which I don’t think anyone really minds.

Unlike the teams that are jabbering about LSU’s “near loss,” the Tigers still control their own destiny this season. Regardless of the rankings, we still have to play Alabama to decide the SEC West champion, and most likely the SEC and BCS as well.

So fans of these little schools that I will leave nameless, give it a break. LSU, on a bad day, still won. On your good days, you can’t stay within 5 touchdowns of us. Boom…lawyered!