Two Way Street

Drew Anderson and Joey Goodreault, Staff Writer's

Who is a better coach, Jim Harbaugh or Pete Carroll?
Joey: There is no better coaching rivalry in the world of sports then Jim Harbaugh vs. Pete Carroll. These two have been going at it ever since their college days of coaching. Although Harbaugh is a great coach, Carroll is the better of the two. Not only did Carroll dominate Harbaugh in college, but Carroll has translated that same success to the NFL. The last two times these guys met, Carroll’s Seahawks beat Harbaugh’s 49ers by a combined 55 points. TWO WORDS… BLOW OUT! Carroll is obviously the better coach. Harbaugh is a loose cannon who whines on the sidelines half the game. Granted, he does win, but Carroll does it with class and enthusiasm. Carroll’s players would run through a wall for him while former players for Harbaugh have called him, a “bully” and say he is “irritably demanding.” As you can clearly see, Harbaugh stands no chance against Carroll and as you watch the rest of the NFL season this statement will become more evident.
Drew: Jim Harbaugh and Pete Carroll have had beef since they were at Stanford and USC. In 2009 after Stanford crushed USC 55-21, in a game where Harbaugh ran up the score, Pete Carroll asked Harbaugh, “what’s your deal?” Ever since then, it has been on. In the years following, each took jobs in the NFL, and each in the AFC West, creating a rivalry made in heaven. The past couple years the Seahawks and Niners have had some great games, but who is the better coach? I believe it is Harbaugh. Although it is hard for me to muster the words as a Raider fan, he is a great coach. First of all, Harbaugh was able to completely turn around a previously inept Stanford football program and turn the Cardinals into a football power house. Carroll on the other hand, took over one of the richest football schools in history and had a good run, but at the end of Harbaugh and Carroll’s college stints, Harbaugh had the better team. In the NFL, each coach took over struggling teams with some good talent on the roster. What Harbaugh has done, however, is more impressive. He quickly turned around a mediocre team and in his first two seasons had the Niners in the NFC Championship game and Super Bowl in consecutive years. Not only that, but Harbaugh has also made the Niners the most dominant defensive team in the league, largely through free agency and the draft, where the niners have excelled. While Carroll has also had a nice start with the Seahawks, you can’t argue what Harbaugh has done in only two seasons.

Who will win the World Series?
Joey:  And the 2013-2014 World Series champs will be… The Boston Red Sox. You don’t agree? I’ll give you three reasons why.
1. Hitting: The Boston Red Sox have the most balanced line up in the league.  With David Ortiz and Jacoby Ellsbury batting lefty, Dustin Pedroia and Mike Napoli batting right, and Daniel Nava and Jarrod Saltalamacchia both switch hitters, this line up is dangerous. There’s no weak link in the line-up.
2. Experience: Dustin Pedroia, David Ortiz, Mike Napoli, and Shane Victorino all have post season and specifically World Series experience. They have all the leadership and insights to get the job done.
3. Pitching: With a rotation of Jon Lester, Clay Buchholz, Jake Peavy, John Lackey, and Ryan Dempster plus Felix Doubront for relief, the Red Sox have one of the best staffs in the league. Not to mention a shutout closer in Koji Uehara.
I believe the Red Sox have the best chance to get a ring. They have an all around solid team and are hungry for another championship. By the time October ends, the Red Sox will be the most dangerous team in baseball.
Drew: My pick to win the World Series is none other than your Oakland Athletics. Before you call me a homer, hear me out. I think Billy Beane has put together a team built for the playoffs. The A’s versatility and depth will serve them well in the playoffs, and most importantly, the starting pitching and bullpen will keep them in almost every game. The A’s had some rough patches early in the year with their starting pitching, but now they have some guys hitting their stride and in the playoffs you really only need four good arms. In Jarrod Parker, Sonny Gray, Bartolo Colon, and A.J. Griffin they have four guys who can shut down the opposition on any given night and, at least keep the A’s in every game as long as they limit the long ball. The A’s also have a streaky, but potentially lights out bullpen. When Sean Doolittle, Ryan Cook, and Grant Balfour are on top of their game there is no better seven, eight, nine combination in the league. Also with starters Tommy Milone, Dan Straily, and Brett Anderson not in the rotation they have three more good relievers in the pen. What it will come down to for the A’s is hitting. The pitching will hold up and, if a couple hitters get hot, the A’s will be the team to beat. Josh Reddick and Yoenis Cespedes are two of the streakiest hitters on the A’s, and if those two can get hot at the right time it will go a long way for the A’s. It will also be important that the trio of Coco Crisp, Josh Donaldson, and Jed Lowrie can be as good in the playoffs as they were all regular season.
Would you take a shot on Johnny Manziel?
Joey and Drew: No one can argue that Johnny Manziel isn’t a rare talent. However, we would not risk a high draft pick on him. Manziel has had his share of trouble at Texas A&M, and by giving him more money and the glamorous lifestyle of the NFL, it will only make matters worse. The NFL is not like college; professional franchises have standards for their players and expect them to act like responsible adults. If players get into trouble, their team isn’t going to try and help them like they do in college. Manziel is under strict supervision at Texas A&M, and that still doesn’t stop him from doing all the things that have got him in trouble. Therefore, surely an environment with no supervision, the NFL, won’t tame him. With those issues alone, we wouldn’t take a shot on Manziel, but when you also consider his slight frame at 6’1” 200-pounds, we don’t think his body could take the beating that comes with being an NFL player, especially when the guys he is playing against will be just as fast as he is. Overall, we would say stay away from Manziel.