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Shula clarifies talk of asterisk next to Pats' accomplishments
ESPN.Com ^ | November 8, 2007, | ESPN.com news services

Posted on 11/08/2007 4:23:48 PM PST by scott says

Hall of Fame coach Don Shula tried to clarify his comments about the effect the "Spygate" scandal would have on any records that may be achieved by this season's New England Patriots.

Shula told ESPN's "Mike and Mike in the Morning" on Thursday that if the Patriots finish with a perfect record to match that of his 1972 Dolphins, then there "shouldn't be any attachment to it," referring to a possible asterisk next to New England's name in the record books.

"If they run the table, and they win all the games, then they are doing it within the rules of the National Football League," Shula said. "And there shouldn't be any asterisk to it. That would be the accomplishment that they made. It would be the best in all of sports."

Shula also said if New England can finish the season with an unblemished record, the Patriots "will deserve to be called the best team."

When asked if he expected Patriots coach Bill Belichick to take his call if New England were to have an undefeated season, Shula said he hoped so. Shula said that he has known both Belichick and his late father for many years, dating back to the elder Belichick's days at the Naval Academy.

Shula added that while many times before teams have made a run at his legendary Dolphins team, all comers have fallen short.

"If somebody does what we did or does better than we did, I'm going to be the first guy to call that coach and congratulate him," Shula said. "Our players I'm sure will congratulate their players because of the accomplishment. But until someone does it, it's still our record."

Earlier this week, Shula told the New York Daily News he thought the controversy in which Belichick was fined $500,000 and the Patriots were fined $250,000 and lost a first-round draft pick for videotaping the Jets' sideline would leave a stain on any record.

"The Spygate thing has diminished what they've accomplished," Shula told the paper. "You would hate to have that attached to your accomplishments. They've got it."

Shula likened the Patriots scandal to that of the swirl around Barry Bonds in baseball.

"I guess you got the same thing as putting an asterisk by Barry Bonds' home run record," Shula told the Daily News.

Some Patriots players, Tedy Bruschi included, took exception to Shula's opinion.

"If someone questions your integrity, if someone questions who you are, if someone questions the organization you've been a part of ever since you walked into the league, would it upset you?" the linebacker asked, according to the Boston Herald. "So yes, it does upset me. I can't control how people feel about it. I can't control what comes out of their mouths. I only control what I do out there and what we do as a defense and what we do as a team. We keep winning and playing hard. If they want to keep saying those things, maybe we just need to play a little bit harder."

Others, like cornerback Ellis Hobbs, seemed indifferent to the Hall of Fame coach's remarks.

"It doesn't matter to us, man," Hobbs told the Herald. "We know what we do in our heart. We know what it takes to win the right way. We work at it day in and day out, even when that Spygate came. ... I don't consider myself a cheater. No one on this team does. We go out there and work day in and day out. The results speak for themselves."

The way the Patriots have been playing, Shula and the '72 Dolphins might find themselves answering more questions than in past years about whether their record will stand. New England improved to 9-0 on Sunday by beating the previously unbeaten Colts (7-1) in Indianapolis.

There have been serious runs made at the Dolphins' record before. The 1985 Bears started 12-0, then lost on a Monday night to a Dolphins team coached by Shula. The 1991 Redskins started 11-0 and the 1998 Broncos and 2005 Colts opened 13-0 before losing. Although members of the '72 Dolphins have become known for sipping champagne after the last unbeaten team falls by the wayside each season, Shula says stories of that annual celebration "have been blown out of proportion."

"You guys put forth the myth that we are pathetic losers down here clicking champagne glasses and clinging desperately to a record set 35 years ago," former Dolphins tight end Jim Mandich told the Daily News. "Somehow we've been portrayed as being evil. We don't ever blow our own horn. It's a great record, but the record doesn't get beaten.

"The Patriots have assembled a powerhouse of a team. They are a classy bunch of guys and play ball the right way. If they want to join the unbeaten club, come on aboard."


TOPICS: Chit/Chat; Sports
KEYWORDS: nfl; patriots; shula
Clarification of his statement or retraction? You decide---
1 posted on 11/08/2007 4:23:50 PM PST by scott says
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To: 4everontheRight; ABG(anybody but Gore); Abbeville Conservative; admiralsn; akorahil; albee; ...

NFL PING



FReepmail scott says to be added to, or to be taken off the NFL Ping list...


This is a fairly high volume ping list

2 posted on 11/08/2007 4:24:59 PM PST by scott says
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To: scott says
If they want to keep saying those things, maybe we just need to play a little bit harder."

Hehe. Poor Dolphins.

3 posted on 11/08/2007 4:32:06 PM PST by lepton ("It is useless to attempt to reason a man out of a thing he was never reasoned into"--Jonathan Swift)
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To: scott says

He must have taken his Aricept today. It was evident he missed a dose the other day.


4 posted on 11/08/2007 4:38:10 PM PST by big'ol_freeper ("Those who hammer their guns into plows will plow for those who do not." ~ Thomas Jefferson)
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To: lepton
Just what the Pats needed—I don’t think Shula knew what he was getting into-
He totally changed his tune when he somehow realized how petty and small it made him look.

Pretty lame, he should have just stuck by his original statement.Now he looks even worse,if thats possible.

5 posted on 11/08/2007 4:39:34 PM PST by scott says
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To: scott says

I hope the Patriots use this as more fuel to win. That will be the best response to Shula, imho.


6 posted on 11/08/2007 4:42:50 PM PST by trisham (Zen is not easy. It takes effort to attain nothingness. And then what do you have? Bupkis.)
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To: big'ol_freeper

He will probably go on another show and say the Pats should have the asterisk....the guy is all over the place.


7 posted on 11/08/2007 4:50:31 PM PST by scott says
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To: scott says

I hope every week until the Super Bowl someone says that the Pats should have an asterisk by their name in the record book. Just keep berating them and they’ll keep pounding their opponents.


8 posted on 11/08/2007 4:54:37 PM PST by big'ol_freeper ("Those who hammer their guns into plows will plow for those who do not." ~ Thomas Jefferson)
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To: scott says
So, basically, Shula merely repeated what he actually said, rather than what was reported. Amazing how a conservative forum can forget that there's a difference between real reality and media reality.

Now he looks even worse,if thats possible.

Only if you're referring to the fact that he called in to Man-Girl & Meatball In The Morning.
9 posted on 11/08/2007 5:34:30 PM PST by Terpfen (It's your fault, not Pelosi's.)
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To: Terpfen
"So, basically, Shula merely repeated what he actually said, rather than what was reported. "

I heard and saw what he said with my own eyes and ears.The guy is all over the place. Don "I did not have sexual relations with that asterisk" Shula
10 posted on 11/08/2007 5:41:00 PM PST by scott says
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To: scott says
Don "I did not have sexual relations with that asterisk" Shula

Pretty sure you mean Don "I'll call Bill Belichick and congratulate him" Shula. Not that he's said anything unusual, incorrect, or offensive either way: recall Tony "This is a sad day for the NFL" Dungy.
11 posted on 11/08/2007 5:54:49 PM PST by Terpfen (It's your fault, not Pelosi's.)
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To: scott says
Just what the Pats needed—I don’t think Shula knew what he was getting into--He totally changed his tune when he somehow realized how petty and small it made him look.

What happened was the story got HUGE play on ESPN/ESPN Radio and all that did was rile up the Patriots players. The Dolphins could be in for a nasty shock when they play at the Patriots near the end of the season.

12 posted on 11/08/2007 7:15:38 PM PST by RayChuang88
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To: scott says

This has fired up the Pats players so much I’m willing to bet anyone $1 million dollars that the Patriots DO NOT LOSE this Sunday!


13 posted on 11/08/2007 7:28:43 PM PST by FDNYRHEROES (Always bring a liberal to a gunfight)
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To: scott says

I just googled backtracker and to my suprise a pic of coach with the ‘72 Dolphins came up.


14 posted on 11/08/2007 8:30:17 PM PST by cleveland gop (5-3 Browns? Welcome to parity NFL style! Vote FDT! Peyton Manning said so!)
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To: cleveland gop
Don “I was actually for an asterisk before I was against an asterisk" Shula
15 posted on 11/08/2007 9:10:07 PM PST by scott says
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To: scott says

Shula told ESPN’s “Mike and Mike in the Morning” on Thursday that if the Patriots finish with a perfect record to match that of his 1972 Dolphins, then there “shouldn’t be any attachment to it,” referring to a possible asterisk next to New England’s name in the record books.

“If they run the table, and they win all the games, then they are doing it within the rules of the National Football League,” Shula said. “And there shouldn’t be any asterisk to it. That would be the accomplishment that they made. It would be the best in all of sports.”

Obviously a retraction.

I bet Don Shula hasn’t backpeddled this fast since the 1950’s.....(chuckle)


16 posted on 11/09/2007 5:41:26 AM PST by Badeye (Ron Paul joined 88 Democrats.....)
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To: Badeye
Don "Read my lips,no new asterisks" Shula

His wife probably told him to knock it off, it made him look ridiculous.
17 posted on 11/09/2007 7:05:35 AM PST by scott says
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To: scott says

Somebody did, thats obvious given the 180 degree turn he just executed.


18 posted on 11/09/2007 7:08:04 AM PST by Badeye (Ron Paul joined 88 Democrats.....)
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To: scott says; mainepatsfan; lepton; big'ol_freeper

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=simmons/071109&sportCat=nfl


19 posted on 11/09/2007 8:52:07 AM PST by misterrob (Nine down, 10 more til the Pats win the SB again.)
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To: misterrob
Great article--" We haven't seen home field advantage work that well since Hitler invaded Russia"
Good documentation of all the garbage calls/non calls in that game. I posted in the Live Thread that it looked like a concerted effort by the refs---I feel that way now more than ever--
20 posted on 11/09/2007 9:10:17 AM PST by scott says
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To: scott says
He illustrated several instances of bad calls and then he goes further to show the NFL’s denial of the incompetence.
21 posted on 11/09/2007 9:27:09 AM PST by misterrob (Nine down, 10 more til the Pats win the SB again.)
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To: misterrob

(Nine down, 10 more til the Pats win the SB again.)

Winning streak ends December 9th....
As far as the SB goes, we’ll just have to see who’s more “FIRED UP” in the playoffs.


22 posted on 11/10/2007 4:12:07 AM PST by Into the Vortex
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To: Into the Vortex
My tag is about how many games, not wins. They could run the table but I have never called that from the outset of the season.

However, the Pats at home for the Steelers? I don’t see a loss happening there. Of course a loss later in the year might be the best thing that could happen to them because that means that Belichick will have them working even harder and have them even more motivated for the playoffs.

23 posted on 11/10/2007 5:07:13 AM PST by misterrob (Nine down, 10 more til the Pats win the SB again.)
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To: scott says

Too bad she didn’t tell him to STFU when he was all over the radio in Jan trashing both Alabama and Nick Saben....He came across as a pathetic, bitter old man....and I used to be a huge D. Shula fan....I would have had a lot of respect for Mike Shula if he’d told daddy dearest to let him fight his own battles.....oh well, then dear old dad did go out and get him an NFL job.....


24 posted on 11/13/2007 11:49:07 AM PST by BamaDi (Roll Tide Roll......Sabin's here - never fear!)
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