New England Patriots: Trouble In Paradise

New England Patriots: Trouble In Paradise

How possible rifts in New England could affect the Patriots in the playoffs.
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With the New England Patriots just a few days away from beginning their run in the latest installment of the NFL Playoffs, reports from Foxborough suggest that the pillars of the most successful organization in sports might be crumbling before our very eyes. And although the organization would say otherwise in a joint statement released on Friday, the “Holy Trinity” of Owner Robert Kraft, Head Coach Bill Belichick, and Quarterback Tom Brady are rumored to be experiencing troubled times at the most pivotal point of the season.

With New England beginning their playoff run as the odds-on favorite to win Super Bowl LII, off-the-field distractions seem to be plaguing the Patriots locker room more than ever. For a team that has survived Spygate, Deflategate, Bradygate, and seemingly every other “gate” imaginable, rifts within the upper echelons of the New England Patriots could spell a premature end for the most storied and successful franchise in the history of modern sports.

Lately, the biggest distraction for New England has been a controversial relationship between star Quarterback Tom Brady and his personal trainer, Alex Guerrero. Together, the two developed the “TB12 Method”, a training program used primarily by Brady, as well as his teammates. However, Guerrero has no direct relation to the Patriots organization, and his “cult-like following” has caused discomfort among the Patriots’ official medical staff. Guerrero’s outside influence has spread inside the Patriots’ locker room, and his methods are beginning to be criticized by actual doctors. Considering Guerrero’s most advanced medical degree is a Bachelor’s in traditional Chinese medicine, it’s safe to say he might not be the most qualified man to handle the medical well-being of 50+ professional athletes.

However, the drama in the Guerrero Saga cuts deeper when it was reported that although plenty of Patriots had been spotted training at Guerrero’s facility, former New England backup Quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo was denied access to the facility just weeks before he was traded from New England to the 49ers earlier this season. At face value, Garoppolo’s denial to the TB12 training facility does seem odd, however, the situation seems much more peculiar when reports surfaced that Brady was “uncomfortable” with Garoppolo looming as the obvious heir apparent to the Patriots dynasty. Could it be implied that Brady went over Coach Belichick’s head and forced ownership to meddle with a major player decision? Is it possible that Tom Brady orchestrated the Jimmy Garoppolo trade?

Obviously, a large portion of these reports are based off speculation and it is important to look at this entire scene with plenty of grains of salt, however, with such an enormous scandal erupting just days before the playoffs, the entire situation feels like an “October Surprise” in the middle of January. And now, with the Patriots just a few days away from beginning their quest for a 6th Super Bowl title, and their 3rd in 4 years, football must become the number one priority immediately. Whether it be coaching disputes, forced trades, or a traditional Chinese herbalist, the shift of focus for New England must happen sooner rather than later. It's obvious that the Tennessee Titans have a clear focus, and it's time for the Patriots to follow suit.

Cover Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

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5 Perks Of Having A Long-Distance Best Friend

The best kind of long-distance relationship.
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Sometimes, people get annoyed when girls refer to multiple people as their "best friend," but they don't understand. We have different types of best friends. There's the going out together best friend, the see each other everyday best friend and the constant, low maintenance best friend.

While I'm lucky enough to have two out of the three at the same school as me, my "low maintenance" best friend goes to college six hours from Baton Rouge.

This type of friend is special because no matter how long you go without talking or seeing each other, you're always insanely close. Even though I miss her daily, having a long-distance best friend has its perks. Here are just a few of them...

1. Getting to see each other is a special event.

Sometimes when you see someone all the time, you take that person and their friendship for granted. When you don't get to see one of your favorite people very often, the times when you're together are truly appreciated.

2. You always have someone to give unbiased advice.

This person knows you best, but they probably don't know the people you're telling them about, so they can give you better advice than anyone else.

3. You always have someone to text and FaceTime.

While there may be hundreds of miles between you, they're also just a phone call away. You know they'll always be there for you even when they can't physically be there.

4. You can plan fun trips to visit each other.

When you can visit each other, you get to meet the people you've heard so much about and experience all the places they love. You get to have your own college experience and, sometimes, theirs, too.

5. You know they will always be a part of your life.

If you can survive going to school in different states, you've both proven that your friendship will last forever. You both care enough to make time for the other in the midst of exams, social events, and homework.

The long-distance best friend is a forever friend. While I wish I could see mine more, I wouldn't trade her for anything.

Cover Image Credit: Just For Laughs-Chicago

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ASU Baseball Is Already Knocking It Out Of The Park

All eyes are on the Sun Devils as they enter the national poll this previous week. The Sun Devils are the last unbeaten team left in the NCAA.

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Starting off the season 18-0? Not bad, considering the Sun Devils' haven't gone undefeated at the start of the NCAA baseball season since 2010 when they went 24-0, but honestly where did this come from? In the 2017-18 season, the Devils finished off with 23-32, sitting towards the bottom of the Pac-12. Now they're the top of the conference, past the usual Pac-12 baseball powerhouse, Oregon State.

On a team with only 27 on the roster, which makes it the smallest team in the Pac-12, you wouldn't really expect such an explosive start to the season. Take a look at the improvements made, though, and you'll see why.

For starters, catcher Sam Ferri is back healthy and ready for this season to start with both pitchers Alec Marsh and RJ Dabovich, who've both thrown some great games, but if we're being honest here, have been a little inconsistent with a few errors, but have been backed up by the offense to get the job done.

On offense, Hunter Bishop and Spencer Torkelson are the ones to watch out for. Torkelson was named Pac-12 freshman of the year last year, after setting the Pac-12 freshman record of home runs. Now he's back with some deadly at-bat presence, as you can always expect a few RBIs from him, and also doing a great job at infield (#TorkBomb). Bishop's following suit, with major at-bats against Notre Dame, Michigan State, and Xavier.

Safe to say being ranked #23 right now is huge for a program that struggled majorly in the past seasons and has had some great players transfer out recently. Despite being faced with huge adversity before the season, this lineup is really producing some good stuff this year, and by being undefeated through the first month of play really exemplified that.

Hats off to Head Coach Tracy Smith for helping these young men after having the program suffer for a while.

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