Friday, January 12, 2007

Another Hoosier Victory + Adam Ahlfeld Team Player Award + The Kirkwood Bar & Grill

Sorry for the two days of no posts, had a bit of the Defend The Rock Birthday Bash hangover.

Let's see what has happened since then? Oh yes, IU crushed Purdue 85-58. The short story: Four players in double figures, a sickening 9 team blocks, a fine team rebounding effort with 30, and a prison sentence worthy 11 steals.

This has now been two VERY impressive games played by this Hoosier squad in a row. We won't be seeing wins with a point differential of 20+ every time out, but damn is this team really turning the corner and showing the Big Ten that they mean trouble.

So, the Adam Ahlfeld Team Player Award normally is given at least a week off between appearances, but one Hoosier forced out hand, the winner this go around is:

A.J. Ratliff. 16 Points, 2 Blocks, 2 Steals, all in just 18 minutes of play, oh yeah, and he was coming off an injury. The kid played his heart out for his team and has not only an IU win to show for it, but also an award.

So Defend The Rock made another appearance at The Kirkwood Bar & Grill here in Chicago, this time to watch the Purdue-IU game.

The place was packed to capacity (160 I think I heard?), with Hoosiers everywhere. Your's truly had a Whiskey & Ginger ale - seemed a tad bit weak but got the job done, although a bit pricey. Then again, it is a sports bar, where you can easily find the beer on tap to be cheap and plentiful. Many of the patrons were treating themselves to huge ass beers in commemorative IU mugs. Naturally for food I ordered "The Hoosier," known better by its more common name "cheeseburger." It wasn't anything special, but my oh my, the seasoned fries that came with it were some of the best I've had in Chicago. As for watching the game there, TVs are large and placed throughout the bar. The atmosphere is great as one would imagine, with hundreds of IU fans packed in tight.

The only major complaint Defend The Rock has with The Kirkwood Bar & Grill is that after the IU trouncing of Purdue they played the IU fight song, but cut it off early, leaving us fans to finish it off ourselves without iPod driven accompaniment, but I'm sure that issue will be resolved.

On the whole it was a fun place to watch the game, grab some drinks and eat some decent food. The Kirkwood Bar & Grill gets Defend The Rock's approval for an IU Gameday Bar. Good work guys!
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Wednesday, January 10, 2007

We're One Month Old!

So today Defend The Rock turns one month old! In weeks one and two you, our readers were merey a glimmer in our blogging eye. Slowly but surely we began to fertilize your minds with essential IU sports knowledge.

In week three we finally bonded, sure the bond may have been small, maybe even just the size of a pin, but a bond none the less. Granted, we bloggers didn't notice any changes, too soon to really notice aything.

In week four our readership was still small, but multipling, continuing to be nourished by plentiful amounts of IU sports information and analysis. As for Defend The Rock, well, let's just say we're late....


But in all seriousness, it's been a fun first month of blogging about IU sports. Looking at our logs it is clear we're getting regular visitors not just from across the United States but also a few in Europe and Asia. Hopefully you're enjoying Defend The Rock and we'd love to hear from you, either by email or comments in posts. Who are you? Did you attend IU? Where are you now? How did you find us? What do you like best about Defend The Rock? What could be improved?

Thanks for a great month folks, we'll be keeping up the good work.
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Sunday, January 7, 2007

Indiana 73, Michigan State 51 + Adam Ahlfeld Team Player Award

As any loyal reader of Defend The Rock knows predictions aren't made on here, well, at least not made public. But those around me today prior to the game would've heard me going on and on about how Indiana was set to not only beat MSU but trounce 'em. Even so, no way I was expecting this sort of win.

We might as well start off with a continuation of our D.J. White Is A True Man series. With 21 Points, 2 steals, 1 block, (but just 3 rebounds?!?!) in 27 minutes this guy keeps giving us massive performances week in and week out. You often hear that there are more than just stats to a player, and I'll trot out that cliche here. Watching this man play is simply a pleasure. You wouldn't know from just looking at the box score the type of shots he's taking and making, just some truly unbelievable shots for a guy who is 6'9".

Lance Stemler provided yet another solid performance and looks to be well out of that nasty funk he was in for three games. The scary part is that he scored 16 points all while being 1-8 from three point land. If this guy ever completely regains his 3-shot, watch out Big 10. It really looked like he was forcing his shots today from beyond the arc, and it doesn't help that he has a very awkward release point to begin with. Maybe Defend The Rock will make an instructional video relating to three point shooting for him, keep your eyes on YouTube Lance!

And of course we have to mention how this team continues to be an absolute freakshow on defense. 20 turnovers by Michigan State w/ 24 IU points scored off turnovers. That's just madness. And of course once again that "bubble drill" of Kelvin Sampson's paid off with a nice round 30 rebounds, with 17 second chance points scored.

All in all a solid win by the Hoosiers. This team is no Ohio State or Wisconsin but as Big Ten play progresses there is a great chance the Hoosiers will see themselves atop of the "second tier" of Big 10 teams, and maybe if everything falls into place, nudge there way into the conversation regarding the big guys in the conference.

And now for the Adam Ahlfeld Team Player Award This weeks recipient is:

D.J. White who I basically said would win it a week ago kept up his high level of play to actually deserve it. Admit it, this guy is such a basketball monster that you'd have no problems if he stole your girlfriend. (Plus it doesn't hurt that he dresses well, he probably wouldn't even have to try too hard)
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Defend The Rock + Kirkwood Bar & Grill For The IU/MSU Game

On Sunday January 7th our Hoosiers take on the Spartans of Michigan State at 3:30 CST. Defend The Rock's very own YOUTELLEMKELLEN will be at the Kirkwood Bar & Grill for the duration of the game. Sure he has a pretty nice A/V setup to watch the game, but he wants to be amongst other IU fans for the game (plus it doesn't hurt that he lives two minutes away from the damn place).

After the game, plenty of drinks and hopefully a hand-numbingly high amount of high-fives due to IU's first victory over a ranked opponent, we will have a full review of the Kirkwood Bar & Grill up on Defend The Rock. We're always looking for good places to watch our Hoosiers play, let's just hope this new place is up to our standards.

So if you're in the Chicago area, be sure to make it out to The Kirkwood Bar & Grill @ 2934 N. Sheffield, either in person or in spirit to cheer on the Hoosiers.

[Disclaimer: In no way is this blog or its editors affiliated with The Kirkwood Bar & Grill]
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