Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Bela Fleck

Album and Documentary titled "Throw Down Your Heart." Highly recommended.

Nic Cage

Special thanks to the SportsGuy from espn.com

Monday, March 30, 2009

Alert The Iranian Community

California plant recalls 1 million pounds of pistachio products

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- A California food processing plant is voluntarily recalling up to 1 million pounds of roasted pistachio products that may have been contaminated with salmonella, the Food and Drug Administration announced Monday.

The nuts came from Setton Farms in Terra Bella, California, about 75 miles south of Fresno. They were largely distributed in 2,000-pound containers to food wholesalers who would then package them for resale or incorporate them as ingredients in other products, such as ice cream and trail mix.

No illnesses have been linked to this case, said Dr. David Acheson, FDA's associate commissioner. But salmonella strains were found last week during routine test by Kraft Foods, one of about three dozen companies that purchase pistachios from Setton Farms, he said. Kraft notified the FDA on March 24.

Raw pistachios are roasted to a temperature that should kill salmonella, Acheson said. Because the roasted products tested positive for salmonella suggest cross-contamination with raw products.

Acheson added that the Setton Farms recall is related to the one announced Friday by Kroger, a grocery store chain with stores in 31 states. Kroger recalled Private Selection shelled pistachios from its retail stores because of possible salmonella contamination.

Kroger, in a statement Friday, said no illnesses have been reported in connection with the product.

Friday, March 27, 2009


ShamWow pitchman Vince Shlomi was arrested on felony battery charges in Miami last month following a violent encounter with a hooker, according to The Smoking Gun:

Shlomi told cops he paid [Sasha] Harris about $1000 in cash after she "propositioned him for straight sex." Shlomi said that when he kissed Harris, she suddenly "bit his tongue and would not let go." Shlomi then punched Harris several times until she released his tongue. The affidavit...notes that during the 4 AM fight Harris sustained facial fractures and lacerations all over her face.... After freeing his tongue, a bleeding Shlomi ran to the [hotel] lobby, where security summoned cops. Harris refused to cooperate with officers, who recovered $930 from her purse.
Harris is reportedly considering a lawsuit against Shlomi, though prosecutors "declined to file formal charges" against him.

Where the Wild Things Are

Directed by Spike Jonze based on an adaptation by Spike Jonze and Dave Eggers of the Maurice Sendak book 'Where the Wild Things Are'.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Mexican Spring Break

Enough, fuckers. The fear is gone. Get your dopey heads out of my way or I will push your face.
American clowns stuck in the middle of what is amongst the worst economic situations ever. Here they are. Is pouring money on a spring break trip to Mexico going to boost the American economy? Are the beaches of Hawaii, California, and Florida out of order? Do any of you wretched parents realize what you are really doing? All the irrational shit you allow to rest at the forefront of your mind for comfort? You are spring breaking in an exotic locale with your next to naked, smashed and underage daughters while a pack of male predators circle like vultures tricking their way into your daughters vaginas or waiting for the moment they are weak and drunk enough to take the pussy. Does Aruba ring a bell? Natalie Holloway? How about the cartel violence in tourist spots like Cancun and Tijuana? Wonder what the cartel is doing at your tourist spot? Do you care so much about your daughters tan lines that you let her walk around in some lotion, two strings, two cocnut shells, and a leaf? Are you really giving dirty looks for taking a stare at the tight countours being exposed in a way most reserve for the privacy of their bathrooms and bedrooms? If you tan your body its to look good naked. Im looking at you because you look good naked and that is what I am into. Because your body is perfectly full in all the best places. I like to catch a woman as she lets her hair loose and scratches her scalp while she shakes her head to bring the free flow back. Especially if she is in the water. Mid-thigh level, so there is that sexy gap between her legs that shows just how nice her shape is.
A kid tells his Mom he found something on the beach that he wants to take home to remember Mexico. She smiles and happily tells him to bring it back to the room at the end of the day and they will fly back with it when they get on their plane tonight. The kid takes off running down the beach, his mom still smiling. I recognize them, they have been staying across the hall since I arrived.
An Asian woman passes with her son and kicks sand into my drink.
This other mom with the hot daughter is still glaring at me. Are you looking so offended and worried because of my bushy beard and my long, thick unruly hair? Is it because you know what I am thinking? Or is it because you are too naive to be watching out for the eager seventeen year old with the birkentstocks who is planning on ejaculating inside your virgin daughter? If your daughter getting stared at by some creep with a beard is bothering you than consider telling the little bitch that it`s not polite to stare. Not when someone checks into a hotel. Not when someone is eating dinner. Not when someone is having a drink. Not even when the person has a beard. And surely not when its a twenty five year old man with ten grams of mexican schwag in his pocket and eight empty cups strewn in the sand around his lawnchair at 1pm. What I'm thinking about is undressing your daughter and making her cum. If not her, someone elses daughter. Any girl with a flat stomach, perky breasts and a smile will do. Sometimes my mind wanders and I also think about the hotel employee who sold the ten grams for a hundred bucks with a promise that it was chronic. The bastard. A hundred dollars is worth a couple ounces, easy.
I rest my hands on my fat belly and turn away from the mother and daughter as they pack their things and exit the beach, probably to head to the pool or grab a late lunch. Or because I have made them feel very uncomfortable. It is hard. In a string bikini she looks good doing anything. Whether it be the packing up she is doing now or the moment a few hours ago when she was walking back to her room for who knows what and she cut her foot on an unidentified object on the ground. I was too far away to look closely. I could just watch as she hopped and balanced like a light brown flamingo.
I see something really beautiful. A mother, bald from chemo, talks as she stands on the beach. At first glance it appears as if she is talking to someone 30 feet in the air in the opposite direction of where the rest of the guests lay on the beach. I turn my head for a more complete picture. Her child, 150 yards away and three stories up, talks back from the porch of their room. For a moment everything ever is forgiven, including myself. The world feels small. I listen to the conversation as do two elderly couples from Canada enjoying drinks. A family of nine Pakistani's. A Mexican couple and their son. Twin bleach blonde daughters. The Euro couple who each day get naked and kiss each others privates in plain sight with the husband stopping every so often to snap some photos of his wasted, lazy wife with breasts like grapefruits in pillowcases. The Mexican father takes a mini-football out of his wife's beach bag and begins to play catch with his son. The world feels very small. It makes little sense, yet it feels good to be a part of alive. It's almost like finding a spot on a beach where for a moment you can feel completely alone even though there are people and things everywhere. The son misjudges the ball and catches one with his left eye. He goes down hard and immediately gets loud. Alright you little shit, you've got everyones attention.
The man next to me turns towards me with a smile, "Isnt it just great to be alive?"
I pause. I allow the fury to build. When it boils I swiftly crack the lid and hit him with a burst of steam, "Fuck you! Go fuck yourself!"
A loud beep breaks the noise of voices and wind and waves crashing onto the beach. A Nextel two-way page plays through a man's phone. He is sitting nearby with his family. He clicks the phone, another beep, then he starts to yammer away into the reciever. Nearby the first kid returns to his mom with a four foot branch of drift wood in his hands. The man on the phone stops, then another beep comes in followed by the voice of the caller again. The man hands the phone to a woman sitting next to him as the speakerphone voice continues on. I turn fast and move quick. As I reach him he is still in shock as is the rest of his family. I grab the phone in one motion and continue running. As I reach the water I toss the phone 40 yards into the ocean. It barely makes a plopping noise. "That was my cell phone!?!"says the offended woman.
"Its a rectangle made of metal and plastic at the bottom of the ocean. Sort of like a man made sea shell." I say, feeling satisfied. I am fairly sure I heard her husband giggle as I walked away.
Her mouth remained open and her feet still for some time. I didn't notice her leave but by the end of the sunshine she was gone. I gathered my things and staggered down the beach towards my room.
When I woke up it was dark. My room smelt thick. I took the mini bottles from the mini bar and a handful of joints I had carefully rolled from the bag in my pocket while 'Car Carrier Blues' played on repeat and I left my room. I set out for the beach, always a treasure at 3am. Then the clean blue pool at night caught my eye. Sprawling and massive and totally empty. I managed to finish all the goodies I brought as I drifted and swam around during the dark, empty night. Sometimes I would hit the joint and dunk my head underwater while I held my hand above, dry. Sometimes I would toss the mini bottles to the next place I wanted to swim too and used them as a poor mans diving darts. After sunrise I left the pool as the first tanners laid out. My fingers and toes sucked dry pruned. After I packed my things I walked out of my room for the last time, looking back to make sure I didn't forget anything. Across the hall the empty room was being cleaned. Outside the room, leaned up against a corner, the four foot tall wooden branch. Mom had decided her son would leave it behind. Or he just forgot.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Only in Baghdad

from espn.com
BAGHDAD -- Police say an Iraqi soccer player has been shot dead just as he was about to kick what could have been the tying goal in a weekend game south of Baghdad.

Police Maj. Muthanna Khalid says a striker from the Buhairat amateur team was facing only the goalie during a Sunday match in Hillah when a supporter of the rival Sinjar club shot him in the head in the final minute of play.

Sinjar was leading 1-0 when the shooting occurred. Khalid said a spectator was arrested.

More Iraqis are turning out for sports events now that security is improving. Major matches in Baghdad are heavily guarded but security in amateur games in smaller cities is often lax.

Friday, March 13, 2009

It's Science

Two from sciencedaily.com
ScienceDaily (Mar. 7, 2009) — Superb natural latex from a desert shrub called guayule (why-YOU-lee) makes high-quality gloves, medical devices, and other in-demand natural rubber products.
But guayule may also prove to be an economical, environmentally friendly source of another valuable resource—energy. That's according to Agricultural Research Service (ARS) chemist Colleen M. McMahan at the agency's Western Regional Research Center in Albany, Calif.
Bioenergy can be made from ground-up guayule stems and branches, left after their white, rubber-rich latex has been removed, McMahan noted. The leftovers—a soft, light brown sawdust-like material called bagasse—provide 8,000 to 9,000 Btu per pound, about the same as charcoal.
McMahan's collaborators include ARS chemist Kevin M. Holtman at the Albany center, who has already made small amounts of ethanol from guayule, and chemical engineer Akwasi Boateng at the ARS Eastern Regional Research Center in Wyndmoor, Pa. Boateng is looking into converting guayule bagasse into bio-oil or synthetic gas.
Guayule offers many biofuel benefits. It isn't a food or feed crop, so using it for energy production won't compete with those uses. Guayule shrubs can be harvested for the first time as early as two years after planting, and are ready to harvest again in about another year and a half.
Guayule's bagasse and latex are available year round. The only other biofuel feedstock available continuously right now is garbage (municipal solid waste).
In addition, guayule thrives in hot, dry ecosystems where many other biofuel crops wouldn't grow well. The hardy shrub requires less fertilizer than other crops currently produced in the desert Southwest. Even though a few herbicides are needed while the plants are getting established, once that happens, there's no need for more—or for chemicals that target harmful insects, fungi, or worms called nematodes.

ScienceDaily (Mar. 11, 2009) — University of Illinois plant geneticist Stephen Moose has developed a corn plant with enormous potential for biomass, literally. It yields corn that would make good silage, Moose said, due to a greater number of leaves and larger stalk, which could also make it a good energy crop.
The gene known as Glossy 15 was originally described for its role in giving corn seedlings a waxy coating that acts like a sun screen for the young plant. Without Glossy 15, seedling leaves instead appear shiny and glossy in sunlight. Further studies have shown that the main function of Glossy15 is to slow down shoot maturation. Moose wondered what would happen if they turned up the action of this gene. "What happens is that you get bigger plants, possibly because they're more sensitive to the longer days of summer. We put a corn gene back in the corn and increased its activity. So, it makes the plant slow down and gets much bigger at the end of the season."
The ears of corn have fewer seeds compared to the normal corn plant and could be a good feed for livestock. "Although there is less grain there is more sugar in the stalks, so we know the animal can eat it and they'll probably like it." This type of corn plant may fit the grass-fed beef standard, Moose said.
"The first time I did this, I thought, well, maybe the seeds just didn't get pollinated very well, so I hand pollinated these ears to make sure. I found that just like the shoot, seed development is also slower and they just don't make it all the way to the end with a plump kernel," Moose said.
He explained that the energy to make the seed goes instead into the stalk and leaves. "We had been working with this gene for awhile. We thought there would be more wax on the leaves and there was. But we also got this other benefit, that it's a lot bigger."
Moose tested his hypothesis with other corn lines and the effect was the same. "We essentially can make any corn variety bigger with this gene. And it can be done in one cross and we know exactly which gene does it."
He noted that if you put too much of the Glossy 15 gene in, it slows down the growth too much and the frost kills the plant before it can grow.
One advantage to growing sugar corn for biomass rather than switchgrass or miscanthus is that sugar corn is an annual. Moose said that if it would attract a pest or develop a disease, farmers could rotate a different crop the next year.
Moose said that sugar corn might make a good transition crop.
"We think it might take off as a livestock feed, because it's immediate," Moose said. "This would be most useful for on-farm feeding. So a farmer who has 50 steers, could grow this and use the corn as feed and sell the stalks and sugar. It could be an alternative silage, because it has a longer harvest window than regular silage."
For this sugar corn plant to become commercialized, it would have to get government approval, but Moose said that this is about as safe a gene as you can get. "It's a gene that's already in the corn – all we did was to put an extra copy in that amps it up."
Findings from this research were published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America.

from newsdaily.com
ZURICH, Mar. 12, 2009 (Reuters) — Roche Holding AG has struck a deal with Genentech Inc to acquire all outstanding shares in the U.S. biotech group for $46.8 billion, or $95 a share, the Swiss drugmaker said on Thursday.
General view of Swiss pharmaceutical company Roche's general annual shareholders meeting in Basel, March 10, 2009.
After a fierce battle that started last summer, Roche finally clinched the deal to buy the 44 percent of the U.S. biotech group it doesn't already own after Genentech's board recommended shareholders accept the increased cash offer.
Roche had raised its hostile bid to $93 per share from $86.50 last week, which had prompted the restarting of talks between the two companies, Roche Chairman Franz Humer said.
"Roche was not forced to pay above $100, like some had initially called for," said Vontobel analyst Andrew Weiss.
"With this deal Roche secures itself the operating cash flow from Genentech it does not already own, access to Genentech's pipeline beyond 2015 and gains access to Genentech's cash pool of roughly $10 billion," he said.
Roche's share price was down 1.3 percent at 143.60 Swiss francs by 0906 GMT, when the DJ Stoxx European healthcare sector index was up 0.2 percent, having gained in recent days on expectations that the company would get the deal done and hence improve its performance with Genentech fully embedded.
Buying Genentech will give Roche control of all revenues for big-selling cancer drugs Avastin and Herceptin, as well as absorbing an attractive portfolio of new medicines.
The buy-out is the third major deal in the pharmaceutical industry this year, after Pfizer Inc's agreement to buy Wyeth for $68 billion in January and Merck & Co Inc's $41 billion agreed bid for Schering-Plough Corp this week.
Big drugmakers have been seeking to diversify and reduce their reliance on slow-growing traditional prescription medicines, which face patent expiries and falling prices.
The Genentech deal is expected to be accretive to earnings per share in the first year after closing and to generate annual pre-tax synergies of $750-850 million, Roche said
The combined group would be the seventh largest U.S. pharmaceuticals company by market share, with around $17 billion in annual revenue in the United States.
Roche's initial bid was rejected last year, and the Basel-based company turned hostile after several months, during which the financial crisis raised doubts about financing, and Genentech's shares fell below the offer price.
Roche, however, successfully raised $39 billion in the bond market which, together with cash on hand, gave it the financial firepower to get a deal done.
Financing is not an issue following the bonds and Roche may no longer need a syndicated loan, Humer said.
Humer said he did not believe there was a danger of losing Genentech employees -- a risk some analysts have voiced -- adding the deal would give an enormous amount of security to employees of both companies.
The Swiss group will look at ways of retaining key Genentech staff and will consider a new plan to persuade them to stay. It has no plans for job losses in research and early clinical development and expects to keep the sales forces of both companies, but will look at savings in other areas.
Humer is to meet with Genentech chief executive Arthur Levinson as quickly as possible to discuss whether Genentech management stays on.
"The objective is not here to walk in and cut costs, the objective is to make this one of the best companies in the world in health care," he said. "I have a strong conviction that most if not all senior management will stay on."

Thursday, March 12, 2009


Joaquin Phoenix

from wenn.com
Actor-turned-rapper Joaquin Phoenix had to be restrained by a security guard at a gig in Florida - after he launched himself at a heckler in the audience.

The star - who has quit acting to pursue a hip-hop career - was playing a gig at the Fontainebleau Miami Beach hotel in Miami on Wednesday night when the incident occurred.

Fans packed into the hotel's nightclub waited four hours until Phoenix eventually appeared on stage at 2am, mumbling the words to his songs over a backing track.

And when one man began jeering from the crowd, Phoenix jumped down from the stage to confront him, yelling, "We have a b**** in the audience. I've got $1 million in the bank, what have you got."

Phoenix was restrained by security guards and dragged away.

Audience member Jorge Lledo says, "I saw the guy screaming at Joaquin, and Joaquin just came down."

The incident was captured on camera by Phoenix's brother-in-law Casey Affleck, who is said to be filming the star's career change for a documentary.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


from profootballweekly.com
The newly formed United Football League announced the coaches for its four inaugural franchises Wednesday.

Dennis Green, who had stints as a head coach in the NFL with the Vikings and Cardinals, will coach the San Francisco-based franchise. Green brings a record of 113-94 as an NFL head coach, including a 15-1 season as head coach of the Vikings in 1998.

1997 NFL Coach of the Year Jim Fassel will take the reins of the Las Vegas franchise. Fassel is most notable for his playoff guarantee as head coach of the 2000 Giants, whom he guided to a Super Bowl appearance.

Jim Haslett, who also garnered honors as the league’s top coach in 2000, led the Saints to their second division title and first playoff victory in franchise history in that same season. He will coach the Orlando-based team.

Ted Cottrell, who was a defensive coordinator for the Chargers, Bills, Jets and Vikings, will coach the team based in New York — also the site of the league’s headquarters.

The UFL kicks off Oct. 8 and has a deal with Versus to televise games weekly through the league’s championship game during Thanksgiving weekend. The deal allows the league to be broadcast to more than 70 million homes.

Prior to the start of the season, all four coaches and teams will convene Sept. 1 in Casa Grande, Ariz., for a training camp that will allow the players to compete together as rosters are finalized.

“I’ve coached a lot of years in both college and professional football, and one thing we know is that you don’t have to have a lot of time to put a team together,” Green said. “The unique aspect of this league and why we’re so confident is that we’ll be able to scout and look at the players who are playing in preseason games and National Football League camps and we’ll be able to evaluate those players when they are released and then we’ll get to sign those players. That gives us one full month to get together and play the games of which we’ll have some practices together going on.”

The lowest-paid UFL players will be paid the same salary as an NFL practice-squad player. In an effort to generate popularity during uncertain economic times, the average ticket will cost $20.

With establishing the league's popularity a primary concern, speculation has been raised as to whether the UFL would be interested in acquiring incarcerated Falcons QB Michael Vick, assuming he had cleared all of his legal issues.

Commissioner Michael Huyghue addressed that issue in a conference call Wednesday.

“Assuming he had cleared all those hurdles, then yes, we would welcome him to our league,” Huyghue said.

Huyghue indicated that the league would poll the fans regarding Vick on its official Web site at ufl-football.com. A deal with Vick would necessitate his release from his contractual obligation with the Falcons.

Part of the UFL's mission statement is: "To fulfill the unmet needs of football fans in major markets currently underserved by professional football by providing a high quality traditional football league comprised of world class professional football players."

However, two of the inaugural franchises will be in New York and San Francisco, two areas that arguably aren't "underserved."

League officials said they hoped to create a "synergy" with the NFL, in which UFL players would be permitted to join NFL teams at the completion of the UFL season in November. Although the UFL apparently will be signing mostly players who don't make the cut in the NFL, league officials didn't say whether or not their ultimate goal is to compete with the NFL.

Two Good Movie Trailers

Show Me The Money

Life During Wartime

While My Ukulele Gently Weeps

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Vikings Free Agency Update

from ESPN
Minnesota re-signed linebacker/special teams ace Heath Farwell to a three-year contract worth about $8 million. Chip Scoggins of the Star Tribune reports $3.25 million in is guaranteed. That's a nice contract for a player who has never started an NFL game and missed last season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament. But Farwell was one of the league's top special teams cover men before the injury and was on track to be the Vikings' top backup linebacker in 2008.
Minnesota has no visits scheduled for this weekend, vice president Rick Spielman said Friday. But it's possible that cornerback Karl Paymah could visit next week.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Say What?

"In order to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe." Carl Sagan

Public Enemies

Apocalypse Now

Missing Boaters Further Information

from ESPN
TAMPA, Fla. -- A doctor on Wednesday said it's a "miracle" that a man survived being in the cold Gulf water for nearly two days after the boat carrying him, two NFL players and another man capsized off the Florida coast.

Dr. Mark Rumbak said 24-year-old Nick Schuyler is in good condition but will remain in intensive care in case there are complications. Schuyler was in 63-degree Gulf of Mexico water for around 46 hours and probably could have lived only another five to 10 hours if he wasn't rescued Monday, Rumbak said.

"To stay in the water for 46 hours and to be alive afterwards, I think it is a miracle," Rumbak said. "I really do."

The Coast Guard's search for the three others who had gone out on the fishing trip ended Tuesday. Still missing are Oakland Raiders linebacker Marquis Cooper, who owned the boat, free-agent NFL defensive lineman Corey Smith and former South Florida player William Bleakley.

Bleakley's mother said Schuyler gave her a harrowing account of the men's fight to survive after the boat capsized Saturday evening. Betty Bleakley said Schuyler told her the men swam back to the overturned boat after being repeatedly hurled by strong waves.

"To listen to Nick, they fought real hard to come home," Betty Bleakley said. "Nick said that all of them fought, just fought to stay alive."

Bleakley and Schuyler, college teammates, managed to stick together for about 24 hours. She says they talked about how they would live their lives differently.

Cooper's family is still hoping to find him alive.

"We're not quitters," said his grandfather, Joseph Davis. "Even though they may stop the search, the search is going to go on."

They set up an e-mail address -- nflsearchandrescue@gmail -- and are asking experienced pilots and boaters who can help to contact them.

Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press

Monday, March 2, 2009

Missing Boaters Update

from ESPN
CLEARWATER, Fla. -- The Coast Guard says a man who went missing during a fishing trip has been found clinging to an overturned boat that belongs to Oakland Raiders linebacker Marquis Cooper.

The Coast Guard says former University of South Florida player Nick Schuyler was rescued Monday off the Florida coast. Authorities say Cooper, Detroit Lions free agent Corey Smith and former South Florida player, William Bleakley, remain missing.

Coast Guard Capt. Timothy M. Close says Schuyler told rescuers that the 21-foot boat was anchored when it flipped Saturday evening in rough seas. Schuyler told rescuers the others got separated from the boat and that he had been clinging to it since.

Television footage shows Schuyler conscious but weak as he was being taken off a Coast Guard helicopter at Tampa General Hospital and placed on a stretcher.

The St. Petersburg Times reported that Schuyler's family has been alerted by the Coast Guard and that Schuyler was found alive and is talking. Schuyler is en route to a Tampa-area hospital.

Asked for a reaction from the newspaper, Stuart Schuyler, who is Nick's father, said: "Like God heard me."

The men were reported missing Sunday, and the Coast Guard had searched about 16,000 square miles of ocean for the 21-foot Everglades-manufactured boat by Monday morning.

Everglades boats are built with compressed foam encased in Fiberglas, which makes them difficult or impossible to sink.

Petty Officer Sondra-Kay Kneen confirmed searchers located a boat. No further details were available.

Waves had subsided to 6 to 8 feet, still enough for a small craft advisory, but considerably smaller than the 15-foot waves Sunday, National Weather Service meteorologist Todd Barron said.

Family members believed the men had lifejackets and flares on board. The Coast Guard had not received a distress signal from the men.

Cooper owns the boat, and he and Smith, who were teammates with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2004, have been on fishing trips before, according to Ron Del Duca, Smith's agent.

Coast Guard Capt. Timothy M. Close said at least one of the men was an experienced boater, and relatives provided the Coast Guard with GPS coordinates from previous fishing expeditions.

The 29-year-old Smith of Richmond, Va., is 6-foot-2, 250 pounds and had 30 tackles, including three sacks, and an interception in 12 games last season for the winless Lions.

Cooper, 26, who is 6-foot-3, 230 pounds, has spent five seasons with five different teams, appearing in 26 games with the Buccaneers in 2004 and 2005, but playing sparingly since. He grew up in Gilbert, Ariz., and his father Bruce is a prominent sportscaster for KPNX-TV in Phoenix.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Missing Boaters

from espn
The Coast Guard is searching for up to four missing boaters, including two active NFL players near St. Petersburg, Fla.

Among the missing is Detroit defensive end Corey Smith and Oakland linebacker Marquis Cooper. Also on board is Nick Skyler. A press release sent out by the Coast Guard also said there is a possible fourth person on board. Agents for both Smith and Cooper confirmed that their clients are among the missing.

"We are in contact with the Coast guard and Corey's family has been informed," Smith's agent Ron Del Duca said. "Corey is one of the good guys out there. We're just waiting for more information and hoping for the best."

Troy Asmus, one of Cooper's agents, said he has been in contact with the NFL and that the league is aware of the situation.

"I have been in contact with the Coast Guard and they are continuing to work hard to find everyone," Asmus said. "We are hoping and praying for the best."

Cooper and Smith played together in Tampa Bay in 2004.

In its press release, the Coast Guard Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector St. Petersburg, Fla., received a call at about 1:30 a.m. Sunday that the party did not return from their fishing trip. In the release, the Coast Guard said four boaters left at about 6:30 a.m. Saturday, from the Seminole Boat Ramp in Clearwater Pass, in a 21-foot center console boat.

The Coast Guard search remains active. Crews used a helicopter and a 47-foot motor-life boat to search a 750-square mile area west of Clearwater Pass on Sunday.

Asmus said he has been in touch with Coast Guard officials and he was told there were 14-foot waves and 45 MPH winds in the waters overnight where his party was fishing. Asmus said he was told that the party's truck and trailer remains at the dock where the boat launched.

Bill Williamson cover the AFC West for ESPN.com. Information from The Associated Press contributed to this report.