The Cleveland Browns and the Pittsburgh Steelers will renew their rivalry for the first time in 2015 at Heinz Field this Sunday.
Andrea Hangst from Bleacher Report joined Brad Russell in the Average Sports Show to discuss the matchup, the quarterback dilemma in Cleveland, and the injuries that have plagued the Steelers as of late.
Despite Pittsburgh's dominance in the rivalry since the Browns came back in 1999, Hangst says the two teams still have that built-up animosity for one another .
"I think it's still a rivalry, it's built in to these guys when they get drafted to either team," Hangst explained.
When asked about the state of the team, Andrea said an "air of dysfunction" was circling around Berea.
"It's not going to end pretty at the end of the year, I believe," she said.
In Week 2 of the High School football playoffs, Nordonia is riding high off a thrilling Week 1 win over neighboring Aurora 39-37. They will face a stiff challenge in Hudson on Friday night.
Knights head coach Jeff Fox joined the Sam Bourquin Show to talk about the matchup with Ron Wright's Explorers and the quality play from his team in all phases of the game against the Greenmen.
Fox was truly proud of his young men, saying they showed toughness and resolve throughout the contest.
"We held on, it was a total team effort," Fox said. "You have to give our kids credit, we doug ourselves into a hole, but we never gave up."
Looking to Hudson, Fox says that he knows his team will be in for a battle and that they'll have to match their physicality.
On the Hudson side of things, head coach Ron Wright said his team is battle-tested after a highly intense matchup with Copley in the opening round of the playoffs.
"I consider them to be a high-powered offense, they have a good athlete at quarterback, good tailback, so we'll be on our toes," Wright said.
Three-time national championship coach Urban Meyer is considered to be one of the more motivationally moving coaches in college football, and with that, he wants to implement some of his leadership and motivational thoughts with people in all walks of life.
Author Wayne Coffey and Urban co-authored the book Above the Line, a book containing many of those life lessons and acronyms.
Coffey joined Brad Russell in the Average Sports Show to talk about the book and some of the tenents from the book that can make a positive impact on your life.
Coffey's biggest takeaway from working with Coach Meyer is his zest for self-improvement and making the most out of each day.
"This is a guy who admits he doesn't have all the answers," Coffey said. "He says that more coaches might know more football than he does, but nobody will outwork him to get the most out of his players, or get the most out of each day."
One of the big takeaways from the book from Brad's perspective is the acronym BCD (Blame, Complain and Defend).
"It's non-productive and you can just try to make the best of the situation," Brad said.
You can buy the book on Amazon or whereever books are sold.
The Cleveland Indians are working on Phase II of the renovations at Progressive Field to make the fan experience even more enjoyable in 2016.
Joel Hammond, Communications Coordinator for the Tribe joined the Sam Bourquin Show to talk about the new additions, construction taking place in and around the ballpark, and what those changes will do to make the trip to the corner of Carneige and Ontario a good one.
"We're looking to extend a little bit of that right field corner district all around the ballpark," Hammond said. "It'll give fans great views of the game."
"We're going to bring some of that local flavor as far as the food with some to-be-announced restaurants to go along with Melt and Barrio."
There will also be a club put in Progressive Field right behind home plate.
The Corner bar in right field was a hit with fans last season, with many people making their way to that section of the ballpark to enjoy a few libations and catch the Tribe in action.
Also, Joel talked about the shoulder surgery for Indians outfielder Michael Brantley and what his timetable is to return.
"If I know Michael though, he will work tirelessly to get back to the field, and he'll try to accelerate his recovery as much as possible." Brantley's expected to be out 4-6 months.
With the news coming out recently regarding former Browns quarterback Bernie Kosar saying that he'd be willing to help the organization regain its footing as one of the league's more competitive franchises, many people have weighed in with their opinions on whether or not #19 would be welcomed back into the fold.
Sammy B caught up with the Voice of the Browns, WKYC Channel 3's own Jim Donovan to talk about Kosar reaching out to the Browns organization, with hopes of changing the culture.
"It's not the first time he said it," Donovan said. "Three owners since 1999 haven't taken Bernie up on his offer, but there's two sides two every story."
Jim says he does not know what role Kosar would like to pursue, whether it's team president, GM, or another role.
Jim Donovan said that one of the obvious things that's going on with the Browns this year, is the lack of talent and it came from some missed draft picks, especially in the first round.
"Guys like Erving, Manziel, Gilbert, those are all guys that should be playing and contributing," he said.
Many people remember when Art Modell took the heart from Cleveland Browns fans 20 years ago (tomorrow) when he moved the franchise to Baltimore.
The memories, the wins, the losses, the Kardiac Kids, Bernie and the Dawg Pound with Dixon and Minnefield resonated with just about everyone, and just like that, it was gone.
Our own Sam Bourquin offered his take on how he felt 20 years ago when he learned of the Browns being on the move.
"The guy (Modell) was moving our team, a team that we had supported win or lose, a team that we would go to the airport and touch their hands when they came back from a road win," Sammy B said.
"Those were our Browns."
Bourquin said that since the Browns came back in 1999, he and many other fans can't wrap their arms around this edition of the Browns, and that their Browns are currently in Maryland.
The article "Lost Dawgs" chronicled the team's move and the fans' heartache over the years. You can check out that article here.
With the NFL in full swing, the latest power ranking came out courtesy of Brent Sobleski of the Bleacher Report.
Sobleski joined Brad Russell in the Average Sports Show on Wednesday to talk about the rankings, the Browns coming in at #25, and what teams are making the most progress.
"If you look at the bottom of the league, it's really not that bad for Cleveland," Sobleski says.
"You look at other teams around the league, the Tennessee Titans fired their coach, the San Francisco 49ers went with Blaine Gabbert as their quarterback, so there's worse situations out there."
Futher delving into the Browns, Tom Reed from the Cleveland Plain Dealer joined Brad later on in the show to talk about his thoughts regarding the Browns' matchup Thursday night with the Cincinnati Bengals.
Johnny Manziel will get the starting nod against the Bengals. Reed said the ball is in his court.
""It's all up to Johnny," Reed said. "This feels different, the team's reeling, and any shot at the playoffs is out the window, so everyone in the organization is under pressure, so they need a a spark."
Cleveland sports has had many highs and lows over the year, and one local author details some of the most exciting moments, players and more with his latest book.
Vince McKee joined the Sam Bourquin Show Wednesday to talk about the book, the history of Cleveland sports, and stories told by the players who played, and the people who covered the teams.
One of Vince's favorite parts of the book was the chapter on the Cleveland Cavaliers, coached by Lenny Wilkens, and how former players Craig Ehlo and Larry Nance talked about their playoff run, their clash with Michael Jordan and the Bulls, and the overall fellowship of the team, and how they bought in to Coach Wilkens' philosophy.
McKee is the author of several books, including the Redemption of the King, about LeBron James' return to Cleveland, and most recently, Ohio Warriors.
The Nordonia Knights got into the playoffs and drew a tough opening opponent in the Aurora Greenmen in Division II Region 3, but Jeff Fox's Knights will be ready to go come Friday.
Fox joined the Sam Bourquin Show Wednesday to break down the matchup and assess his team's play heading into the second season.
"I think our kids, even though we had to replace certain players, saw those lessons we learned about preparing, working hard, and winning Monday through Thursday," Fox said.
"I'm so proud of how our kids played through adversity, and we'll get a chance to see what we can do Friday."
As Fox prepares for the Greenmen, he knows they will bring it each and every play from scrimmage.
"They do a lot of different things, they have a great quarterback, but they like to get in a stacked 'I' and come right at you, so it'll be a challenge, a fun game and a fun atmosphere for two neighboring communities to do battle Friday night."
On a "Big 10 Tuesday" Brad caught up with Sean Merriman from BTN.com for a look at the Big 10 Conference, in addition to the suspension of Ohio State quarterback J.T. Barrett.
Merriman said that Cardale Jones will be starting for Urban Meyer's Buckeyes against Minnesota on Saturday.
Merriman also took a look at the rest of the Big 10, saying with Iowa, Michigan State, and Michigan in the Top 25 , the Big 10 has increased their national perception amongst fans and prognosticators around the country.
The Louisville Leopards will look to keep their season going against Poland Seminary in the Division III playoffs this coming weekend.
Head Coach John DeMarco joined the Sam Bourquin Show Tuesday to talk about the matchup with the Bulldogs Friday at 7:30pm.
DeMarco says his team will have to match Poland's physicality in the trenches on Friday night.
"They don't have that big running back like they've had in the past, they have a smaller, shiftier guy, who's quick, and can make good cuts, but we're going to have to be physical," DeMarco said.
Last season, Poland defeated the Leopards 41-21 in the playoffs.
With winter meetings and Spring Training just a little over 100 days away, the Cleveland Indians are looking to make some important strides into getting where they want to be.
Tribe broadcaster Jim Rosenhaus made an in-studio visit to the Sam Bourquin show to talk about what he feels will get the Indians over the hump.
When asked about how the young kids who came up towards the end of the season, Rosey said they played inspired baseball and finished strong.
"It gives you some hope for next season," Rosenhaus said. "Sometimes it's how you finish a season that doesn't start out as promising and how you battle to finish it out."
The Indians finished the season 81-80 without making the postseason, a disappointment no doubt, but a building block for future development and growth.
Many people say that when the team unloaded veteran players like Nick Swisher and Michael Bourn, and brought up youngsters like Fransisco Lindor, Abraham Almonte, and Giovanni Urshela, they meshed well with leaders like Michael Brantley and Jason Kipnis.
"I think it wasn't until those players (Bourn and Swisher) left that guys like Michael Brantley and Jason Kipnis took ownership of the team and said 'This is our club,' and they were encouraged to do so by Chris Antonetti and Terry Francona, so that made a big difference," said Jim Rosenhaus.