Portland throws a party

The soccer world takes in the Rose City, and more on this episode
August 6, 2014

Portland showed off big-time Wednesday night, with the world of soccer playing attention to Soccer City, USA. And, the Major League Soccer All-Stars did their part to represent the nation's league with a 2-1 victory over Bayern Munich at Providence Park.

The joy in Portland and some thoughts on the soccer community were key elements of the 14th episode of Sportsland, Oregon, recorded this week from the Pit Stop in Southwest Portland.

Cast members Cliff Pfenning and Derek Weber, moved to the record crowd at Sunday's NWSL game, then to how soccer challenges basketball and the Trail Blazers for the top sport in the city.

The NFL, Major League Baseball, Ducks and Beavers and even Roofball talk takes up the rest of the podcast.


Can a rivalry help Portland to the NBA Finals?

Sure the Blazers can win - a lot - but can they attract a TV audience
Dec. 16, 2013 / By Cliff Pfenning, Oregonsports Journal

It seems like just a week ago that fans of the Portland Trail Blazers were being polled on whether the team could win 60 games this season.

Now, the poll is up to a 70-game level, as in "can the Blazers win 70 games?"

Even if they do, will the pro basketball community care? Imagine the potential match-ups for Portland in the NBA Finals. Miami? Indiana? Carmelo Anthony after being traded to the Pacers? How will that roll with the NBA in terms of television viewers?

Portland might win a lot, but what's winning without star power? And, Portland lacks star power, even with two potential All-Stars.

That's where the Oklahoma City Thunder comes in, and it's a key topic for the cast of Sportsland, Oregon, during its 27th episode of the year.

Can the NBA build enough of a rivalry between Portland and Oklahoma City, which was a heavy franchise rival when the team played in Seattle as the Sonics. How much value to TV networks would a Portland-OKC rivaly make?

The cast also talks up the woes of the Dallas Cowboys and strength of pro football in terms of people wanting to pay to see a game.

It's all recorded at Blitz Pearl in Northwest Portland.


Playoff pressure starts to build for Blazers

Sure they can win, but what about the playoffs? And, it's bowl time
Dec. 9, 2013

After wins over Indiana and Oklahoma City in the same week, the Portland Trail Blazers moved up to No. 1 in the weekly Power Rankings produced by Sports Illustrated.

In the Western Conference, though, they're No. 2 - that's the sentiment of the cast of Sportsland, Oregon, from Episode 26 recorded Monday night at Blitz Pearl.

Portland has wins over the Pacers, Thunder and San Antonio Spurs, and have started the season at 18-4, which has them headed for a high playoff seed. But, the playoffs are a different animal and the Blazers haven't been tested there in two seasons. San Antonio, which reached the NBA Finals last season and is 15-4, got the nod in the West Monday, with Portland at No. 2.

Other topics included the Oregon and Oregon State bowl games, the Oregon snow fight scandal and late-game scoring in the NFL, all during the weekly show, which is headed for its fourth season.


Monday, Dec. 9, 2013 - Records through Sunday.

1. San Antonio (15-4)

2. Portland Trail Blazers (17-4)

3. Oklahoma City Thunder (15-4)

4. Houston Rockets (15-7)

5. Los Angeles Clippers (13-8)

6. Dallas Mavericks (13-8)

7. Denver Nuggets (12-8)

8. Golden State Warriors (13-9)

9. Phoenix Suns (11-9)

10. Memphis Grizzlies (9-10)

11. Los Angeles Lakers (10-10)

12. Minnesota Timberwolves (9-11)

13. New Orleans Pelicans (9-10)

14. Sacramento Kings (4-11)

15. Utah Jazz (4-18)



Just give the Ducks a chance

Tue, 10/29/2013 - 6:12am
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Last seen: 7 years 4 weeks ago
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So what's a sports fan to do with so many great stories unfolding in front of them in the throes of Autumn?

First off, it's take a listen to the 24th episode of Sportsland, Oregon, 2013, recorded at Blitz Pearl in Northwest Portland Monday night.

Cast members Cliff Pfenning, Derek Weber and Marlon Thomas talk up the Oregon Ducks and their role in the BCS standings, along with the missed shot at a key win that Oregon State had against Stanford.

Also, it's a wonderful time for Major League Baseball fans with the Red Sox and Cardinals playing in the World Series, although the cast has differing opinions on just how wonderful the series has been so far. Maybe there's some drama left in Game 6 or even Game 7 at Fenway Park.

The Timbers have the top spot in the MLS Western Conference wrapped up, but the excitement of the playoffs will only be at its best if their first series is against Northwest rival Seattle.

And then it's off to the NBA, which starts Tuesday with key games featuring the return of Derek Rose to Chicago as it duels with two-time NBA champion Miami, and then the Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers battle for supremacy of the Honda Center.

The Blazers open Wednesday at Phoenix with the task of ending their 13-game losing streak from the close of the 2012-13 season.

Episode 24 is online and can be followed via Facebook and iTunes.

Those Timbers stay hot news

Portland's rivalry with Seattle is a must-see for the MLS Playoffs
Oct. 14, 2013 / By Cliff Pfenning, Oregonsports Journal

The Timbers Army had to hand the Cascadia Cup to another team Sunday night, but at least they didn't hand it to fans of the Seattle Sounders.

That's the level of rivalry between the Timbers and Sounders.

After Sunday's 1-0 victory over Seattle, not only had Portland beaten its longtime rival, the win put the Timbers into first place in the MLS Western Conference, and in position to win the Supporters Shield for the best record in the league.

Talk of the Timbers is just part of the 23rd episode of Sportsland, Oregon, recorded Monday night at Blitz Pearl in Northwest Portland.

The Ducks and Beavers were a significant part of the show as always, and this week included a point spread for the Civil War set for Nov. 29. Oregon's Marcus Mariota stayed on pace to win the Heisman Trophy with the Ducks beating Washington handily Saturday, while the Beavers kept their role as possible title game spoiler with a win over Washington State Saturday.

Cast members also worked on their picks for the World Series, which needs to include the Los Angeles Dodgers. A little history reveals the Dodgers haven't played the Boston Red Sox in the Series since 1916, and have never played the Tigers for the Series championship.

Some Blazers talk, some Winterhawks talk, a little chatting about Portland's new Arena Football League team, and Tim Tebow found his way back into the line-up, this time with how valuable he might be to Jacksonville keeping its hold on an NFL team.

It's all part of this week's episode:

Cast: Cliff Pfenning, Derek Weber, Marlon Thomas.



College football is the answer

Tue, 10/15/2013 - 8:42am
Cliff Pfenning
Cliff Pfenning's picture
Last seen: 19 hours 26 min ago
Joined: 2010-07-01

So, if you were like me, you learned a lot about the federal government at 9 p.m. Monday night, Pacific time. That's when the federal government shut down.

My reaction was simple - what's that actually mean?

Will traffic lights still work? They will because they're managed by local governments.

Will schools still open their doors? Yes - local governments.

Will cable still operate? Yes - it's a private business.

The mail? Yes, still there because it's a business, too.

So, what's gonna happen to me?

Will I get a break from photo radar? No way.

Well, that's when the scrolling info on the bottom of my television informed me of the big ticket items:

National parks will be closed. That sucks, but it doesn't affect my daily life.

NASA will shut down. Again, bad news, but we already lost the Space Shuttle and our little guy on Mars doesn't need daily updates, so not a big issue.

Federal employees, many of whom manage the tax system, won't get paid.

And, retirement checks won't get mailed out - there's a big item for older citizens, which I'm not.

I'm basically not affected, other than to wonder if I still have to pay taxes for a government that's not officially working.

Of course I do, because Congress is still getting paid.

And, the military is still operating on foreign soil.

What really happened Monday night is the U.S. just looked stupid to the rest of the world. That's nothing against older Americans and people who operate the government - some of whom I know, but most of America isn't directly affected by the federal government.

Our Congress doesn't even care enough about the nation to pass a budget - a long-term budget, too - to keep itself operating.


Even the nations that have filed for bankruptcy have to be looking over to North America with distain.

That's when it hit me it's time for college football to step up and make the federal budget really important, because what's bad for America is bad for college football.

Yes, college football is the answer to the federal government. And, head coaches are in charge of their programs, so they should step up and make a statement for Americans.

Here's a challenge to the college football coaches of America to step aside on Saturday, or Thursday in the case of Texas, Iowa State, UCLA, Utah, Western Kentucky and Louisiana-Monroe.

Just don't coach, something that will challenge team captains and every player on the roster. Assistants should still work, although they should donate their pay to a non-profit, but the head coach, then every player, should just agree to stop.

How fast would Congress work to pass a budget? Tuesday night might happen, or Wednesday ... Thursday morning at the latest. Texas is playing, and Iowa State wants its chance to hammer the Longhorns just like BYU.

It's not just football, by the way, but college football, which is the most important part of virtually every state in the union. That's why college football head coaches are the highest paid public employee in every state but Alaska.

Pro football is a business, which is why it can shut down and the U.S. still goes about its business. Same thing with Major League Baseball, the NBA, the NHL. They can all cancel an entire season and still not affect daily life. But, not college football.

Hotels will suffer. Gas stations will suffer. Beer sales will suffer.

If college football were to stop, even for one week, every member of Congress would get voted out of office, even the people who will eventually be on the winning side because there isn't a winning side when the government stops paying itself and looks stupid to the world. Citizens might even hold Congress captive on Capitol Hill, letting members leave only when they agree to have "I stopped college football" tattoed on their foreheads.

College football head coaches are the real source of power in America, and this is their opportunity to showcase that fact on behalf of every American.

Again, here's the challenge to college football head coaches, make that statement for America:

"Congress, get back to work and pass a budget, or there will be pain. Real pain."

Beavers making soccer waves

Opening with four wins has the team ranked again
Aug. 31, 2012

Oregon State moved into the national rankings and then rallied for a second-straight 2-1 victory Thursday night in Fullerton, Calif.

Led by freshman Sammy Jo Prudhomme's 13 saves, the 21st-ranked Beavers beat Cal-State Fullerton, 2-1, and improved to 4-0, with a home game against UC-Irvine Sunday.

OSU headed to Calif., off victories at Portland and Portland State last week. The Beavers upset Portland just three nights after the Pilots had upset No. 4 North Carolina at home. OSU beat PSU last Friday with a pair of second-half goals after falling behind 1-0.

Jacy Drobney and Marissa Kovac scored for the Beavers, who can complete of sweep of the in-state schools Nov. 2, in their Pac-12 finale at Oregon.


Tournament surprises might be no surprise

SPORTSLAND: Kentucky? No way, while Oregon and OSU seasons keep going
March 12, 2012

The NCAA Tournament brackets released Sunday put a number of former Oregon high school standouts into top seeds, including two on the University of Kentucky roster.

Former Jefferson standout Terrance Jones, and Jesuit grad Kyle Wiltjer, played key roles in helping the Wildcats earn a No. 1 seed in the three-week tournament that has expanded to 68 teams.

The Wildcats playthe winner of Tuesday's Missippi Valley State/Western Kentucky game in the second round on Saturday.

Meanwhile, Oregon City grad Brad Tinsley helped Vanderbilt beat Kentucky in the final of the Southeastern Conference Tournament Sunday, which earned the Commodores a fifth seend and game with Harvard Thursday.

Former Grant standout Mike Moser helped UNLV earn a No. 6 seed and game against Pac-12 Tournament champion Colorado Thursday.

California was the other Pac-12 team selected to play in the 68-team tournament.

Oregon and Oregon State were both invited to play in other tournaments.

Oregon is a third seed in the National Invitational Tournament and will play host to Louisiana State Tuesday at Matthew Knight Arena.

Oregon State was invited to the College Basketball Invitational and will play host to Western Illinois Tuesday at Gill Coliseum. The Beavers won the CBI Tournament two years ago.


Beavers believe, upset top-seed Washington

Jared Cunningham and Joe Burton hit double-doubles, Ducks lose
March 8, 2012

A night after struggling to score four points, Jared Cunningham busted loose for 18 points and 10 rebounds and Joe Burton came off the bench for 14 points and 10 rebounds to lead Oregon State to an improbable 86-84 win over top-seed Washington at the Pac-12 Conference Tournament at the Staples Center Thursday.

OSU, which narrowly edged Washington State 69-64 Wednesday,

The Beavers trailed 79-73 with 2:44 left, but ended the game on a 13-5 run, with Cunningham hitting the go-ahead basket with 31 seconds remaining for an 84-83 lead. The final points were scored at the free-throw line.

Tony Wroten scored 29 points to lead the Huskies, who are still likely to receive an invitation to the NCAA Tournament.

Both teams struggled at the free-throw line, with the Beavers hitting just 17 of 32 attempts (53 percent), while the Huskies managed just 12 of 26 (46 percent). Both teams missed five free throws in the final 31 seconds.

Oregon State will play Arizona in the semifinals.

Oregon had its season end with an 63-62 loss to Colorado when senior Devoe Joseph missed a three-point shot at the buzzer.




Cunningham leads Beavers past Utah

Oregon State rebounds from blowout loss with a blowout win
Feb. 4, 2012

Jared Cunningham scored 20 points to help Oregon State pound Utah 76-58 in a Pac-12 Conference men's basketball game Saturday.

Cunningham, who scored 27 in an upset of Oregon last week, hit seven of 16 shots from the field and six free throws to help the Beavers win for the fourth time in five games.

Devon Coliier added 14 points on 6-fof-10 shooting and Joe Burton added eight points and 11 rebounds for Oregon State, which improved to 15-8 overall, 5-6 in Pac-12 play.

The Beavers missed all nine of their three-point attempts, but finished hitting 46 percent of their field-goal attempts.

Oregon State plays host to Washington State on Thursday.


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