Monthly Archives: September 2011


The Kentucky State Thorobreds are 3-1, ranked 6th in the latest HSRN poll and are prepping for this weekend’s game in the Circle City Classic, a neutral site event against the reigning champs in HBCU D2: the Albany State Golden Rams. Despite all this activity this week the good people at the KSU Sports Information offices and four of their football players were kind enough to find the time for one of Balladeer’s Blog’s brief Q&A interviews. So let’s help celebrate the Thorobreds’ 125th anniversary by getting to know some of their student athletes.


Raphael Amey


Wide Receiver

Dumfries, Va.

1. What was your proudest moment as a Kentucky state football player?     A: My first homecoming game, it showed me the true tradition of HBCU’s, because alumni come back from all over the country to watch no matter how good or bad the team is doing, and it is a really big game, no matter how good your team is doing as well.

2. What aspect of Thorobred tradition prompted you to decide to pursue your football career at KSU?     A: I just saw change in the future for all of us Thorobred football players because, all the players in the 08 class that I came in on was all on the same page, but because of internal mistakes, it has took us a while but this will be the year for change.

3. What would you say is your greatest asset as a football player?    A: My greatest asset is my hand-eye coordination, the way I can adjust the ball and catch it consistently.

4.  What title would you give a 30 For 30 documentary about this year in KSU football?     A: The Rise

5.Why would you say your having the kind of season you’re having?     A:  Because of my hard work dedication and love for the game, and I also had to just wait for my time, and this is my time.

6. With Halloween coming up, what is your favorite horror film?      A: I don’t really like to watch horror films, but the movie “the Strangers” gave me nightmares for a few years.

7. What video game would you say you could kick your coach’s butt at?      A: I’ll kick my coaches but in Diddy Kong Racing for Nintendo 64

8. If Balladeer’s Blog does a road trip for one of  the Thorobreds home games where should I eat?    A:Cracker barrel

About Raphael…

Senior, Raphael Amey, from St. Thomas, Virgin Islands is a Continue reading


Filed under Uncategorized



Lysistrata was written by the Big A himself, Aristophanes, and this comedy always makes a perfect introductory play for newcomers to Ancient Greek Comedy (henceforth AGC). Part of its accessibility to modern audiences obviously comes from the risque premise of the play, of course. For me the notion that we can understand and laugh at the same simplistic but brilliant story that Athenian audiences from 2,422 years ago laughed at and appreciated embodies the value of these ancient works. 


By 411 BCE the Peloponnesian War between Athens (and its allied city-states) and Sparta (and its allied city-states) had been raging for roughly 20 years. The war provides the backdrop for many of Aristophanes’ surviving comedies and is especially apt where Lysistrata is concerned.   Weary of the long, drawn-out conflict the women of Athens, led by the title character Lysistrata (supposedly based on Lysimache, the Priestess of Athena in Athens at the time), join forces with the women of Sparta and decide to withhold sex from the men until they agree to bring an end to the war. 


Lysistrata convenes a covert meeting between the Athenian and Spartan women and, after the usual jokes about booze-hungry Greek women (“Patsy and Edina, 411 BCE” ), several ribald jokes about  Continue reading


Filed under Ancient Greek Comedy


 I’m in the mood to showcase these retro helmets of the Kentucky State Thorobreds, who are celebrating their 125th year this season. The Thorobreds are 3-1 so far and hoping to keep their momentum going this weekend at the 28th Annual Circle City Classic. The Classic is played at a neutral site, Lucas Oil Stadium, in Indianapolis, and pits Kentucky State against their SIAC rivals the Albany (GA) State Golden Rams. The Fleeces, as I call them for short, bring an identical 3-1 record plus their Dirty Blue Defense and Gold Rush O-Line to the game. Both teams are Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized



Dragon Lives Again

The Dragon Lives Again

THE DRAGON LIVES AGAIN (1977) – Category: Brucesploitation with an enjoyably absurd twist               Even for the bizarre sub-genre of Brucesploitation films this movie is out there! The film starts with the recently – deceased Bruce Lee arriving in the afterlife, where the concubines of the King of the Dead gather around to gawk at the bulge in the pants of the late martials arts superstar. (Just in case you thought NO opening could be more tasteless than the one in The Clones Of Bruce Lee (qv)  In a bit of alleged comic relief the bulge turns out to be caused by a weapon, not Lee’s organ. (Corpse schlong jokes! Who doesn’t love them?)

As head-shaking as that bit is at least it’s coherent, unlike virtually everything else that happens from this point on in the movie. And the time-honored tradition of Brucesploitation films having leading men who don’t even look like Bruce Lee is well-represented in this flick, but at least here they try to explain it away by talking about how a person’s face and body change after death.  Which, of course, makes no sense since this is supposed to be Lee’s soul, not his body.

Anyway, Bruce somehow persuades the King Of The Dead to grant him a chance to return to the world of the living, and is told he can return if he outfights all the other inhabitants of this odd netherworld.

You see, this isn’t just any bland version of the afterlife our hero finds himself in. It’s kind of a Continue reading


Filed under Bad and weird movies


Well, the new polls are out for the divisions of college football that Balladeer’s Blog covers. I’ll have the entire Top 25 lists in a moment, but first, since this is the last poll for September let’s take a closer look at our number 1 teams at present.

NAIA – The unanimous number 1 team continues to be the Saint Xavier University Cougars. Coach Mike Feminis, AKA Coach Fem, knows football even better than he knows B-Movies, all of which makes him one of my favorite coaches in college sports. This past weekend the Cougars completely dismantled the Trinity International Trojans by a score of 49-14. The Menlo Oaks, making a name for themselves this year by consistently defeating NCAA Division 3 teams, make their first appearance in the 2011 Top 25, as do the Evangel Crusaders and the VCS Vikings.

NCAA DIVISION 3 – The Whitewater Warhawks  maintain their stranglehold on the top spot, with the Mt Union Purple Raiders naturally right behind them at number 2. For newbies to D3 football, the Warhawks and Purple Raiders are the Yankees and Red Sox of the sport and have played each other in the D3 national championship game for the past 6 years in a row. Each team has won 3 during that run. Will it be “Purple Bowl VII” this December 16th, or will another team manage to rise up in the playoffs and actually beat one of these two powerhouses?  

NCAA DIVISION 2 – The Northwest Missouri Bearcats, after a cruel and heart- breaking offseason, are getting it done on the field and are number 1 for the 2nd week in a row. This week the Bearcats prepare for the Fall Classic against the Pittsburg (KS) State Gorillas coming up on Saturday. At 2, 3 and 5 in Division 2 are 3/5’s of the pitifully few remaining teams in the Gulf South Conference, formerly the SEC of D2 football. In second place  are Terry Bowden’s North Alabama Lions, in the 3 spot are the Lions’ GSC rivals, the Delta State Statesemen and the VSU Blazers are at number 5.

NJCAA – The Navarro College Bulldogs, the defending champions of NJCAA football, retain the top spot. The ‘dogs from Corsicana, TX have rarely been challenged so far this season outside of opening night, when they needed overtime to win the rematch with the Butler (KS) Grizzlies, the team they defeated for the title on December 5th. The Blinn College Buccaneers, where Cam Newton played college ball before transferring to Auburn, clung to the 2 spot, with the Arizona Western College Matadors and the Iowa Western Reivers hanging around the Top 5.

SCFA – The Saddleback Gauchos are the new number 1 in the SCFA poll, after the former number one, and the defending champs, the Mt San Antonio College Mounties, were upset by the Riverside Tigers on Saturday. The 4th place Tigers garnered 2 number 1 votes after bringing down Mt SAC and 3 more went to the 2nd place team, the El Camino Warriors. The Mounties themselves fell to number 5, just behind the team that unseated them, and coming in at the 3 spot are the Fullerton Hornets. Mt SAC is the only team in the Top 5 with a Continue reading


Filed under college football


"If Danny DeVito was an Egyptian god"

BES – This diminutive Egyptian god presents a perfect opportunity for me to point out how the concepts that a deity is supposedly the patron of can change over time. During his centuries- long period of worship Bes was at various times  considered a lion god (his oddly shaped hairdo/beard combo is meant to be reminiscent of a lion’s mane), a patron of art and music, a protector of women in childbirth, a god who could cure infertility and a household god. In that last mentioned role Bes not only looked after children and their mothers, but he would safeguard the household by driving off evil spirits and by strangling potential dangers like snakes, lions and bears. (Oh my!) Because of his short stature and the fact that he was often depicted sporting an enormous erection he was sometimes called “the Egyptian Pan”,  but given his benevolent and constructive nature I would say he has more in common with the dwarfish Shinto deity Sukuna-Biko, the friend of Okuninushi. Bes wore a loincloth made of lionskin with the lion’s tail hanging down behind him (though originally he was presented as Continue reading


Filed under Mythology


 A MILESTONE FOR SIOUX FALLS – The UNIVERSITY OF SIOUX FALLS COUGARS won their first gridiron victory since leaving the NAIA for D2 after last season. Yesterday they logged a road win over the MINOT STATE BEAVERS, themselves recently moved over to D2 from the NAIA. The final score in this game that will live on in USF history was 38-23.

THE WALSH CAVALIERS RULE THE WORLD – The NAIA’s WALSH CAVALIERS took it on the road yesterday and brought down D2’s URBANA BLUE KNIGHTS in a very memorable 22-20 gridiron epic.  

NUMBER ONE TAKES A FALL – The SCFA’s top-ranked team, the MT SAN ANTONIO COLLEGE MOUNTIES, who are also the defending champs in that division, fell from the ranks of the unbeaten following a 29-26 loss to the RIVERSIDE TIGERS.

STAGG BOWL IS READY FOR PRIME TIME – It may not be a game result from yesterday, but it’s a significant development in NCAA Division 3 football. The D3 championship game, better known as the Amos Alonzo Stagg Bowl, is moving from Saturday to Friday night. This year the game will be played at 7 pm ET on December 16th. This marks the first prime time airing of the Stagg Bowl since 2001.

TOP 25 UPSETS – NAIA – The 11th ranked MORNINGSIDE MUSTANGS, still smarting from being toppled from the 3 spot last week after being upset at home by the NEBRASKA WESLEYAN PRAIRIE WOLVES, took down the 9th ranked MIDLAND WARRIORS. The Mustangs earned this bounce back win on the road in a 28-27 Instant Classic that spoiled Midland’s Homecoming … The unranked BETHEL (TN) WILDCATS defeated the 15th ranked CUMBERLANDS PATRIOTS in their own house by a tight score of 35-28 … At number 17, the ROCKY MOUNTAIN COLLEGE BATTLING BEARS suffered their 2nd loss of the season at the hands of the unranked road warriors, the MONTANA STATE- NORTHERN LIGHTS in a 35-32 game for the ages.  

TOP 25 UPSETS – D3 – Just one week after needing overtime to polish off the OTTERBEIN CARDINALS, the 9th ranked OHIO NORTHERN POLAR BEARS struggled against another unranked team, the MUSKINGUM  MUSKIES. The Muskies wound up Continue reading


Filed under college football


 Of the Top 6 teams in each of the divisions Balladeer’s Blog covers, D3’s 4th ranked MARY HARDIN-BAYLOR UNIVERSITY CRUSADERS, better known as “The Cru”, face the biggest challenge today. They will be on the road against American Southwest Conference rival the HARDIN-SIMMONS COWBOYS, who are ranked 21st, are smarting from an unexpected loss last week and who would love nothing more than to hand the Cru (helmet at left) their first loss of the season. Of the winless teams looking for their first victory today the NAIA’s NORTHWESTERN OKLAHOMA STATE RANGERS have the easiest game today, taking on the ever-hapless TEXAS COLLEGE STEERS. The NEBRASKA WESLEYAN PRAIRIE WOLVES, who had the upset of the week last Saturday, will be making a home stand against fellow NAIA (and Great Plains Athletic Conference) team, the number 21 DOANE TIGERS.  And now, links to updating scoreboards in the divisions Balladeer’s Blog covers: 


D3 –

D2 –






Filed under college football


I got an e-mail request for me to review this film, but I did last year, but here it is since I always do what I can to satisfy requests. For more bad movie reviews click here:

Attack of the Beast Creatures (1983)ATTACK OF THE BEAST CREATURES (1983)- Category: A neglected bad movie classic that deserves a Plan 9-sized cult following.       Some passengers from a Transatlantic liner get shipwrecked and marooned on an uncharted island filled with acidic ponds and streams plus a whole tribe of the titular creatures who all look like the doll that attacked Karen Black in Trilogy Of Terror. And it’s the 1920′s for no reason whatsoever! Nothing in the story has Continue reading


Filed under Bad and weird movies


After months of feeling outrightly overwhelmed by how much information I want to share on this subject, I figured I’d better just get started and let the posts flow naturally. I could be organizing my thoughts on this topic from now until December 21st of next year (rimshot) and still not have an overall idea of the most efficient way of laying it all out.

If readers of my blog think I have a ton of books covering obscure global mythology brace yourselves for the sheer dorkgasmic level of material I have on Ancient Greek Comedy. (Henceforth AGC) I’ve been into this topic since I was 17 years old and not only do I have multiple translations of each of Aristophanes’ surviving comedies but I also have multiple books  covering those comedies of his that have survived only in fragmentary form.

And, since I immerse myself in this topic with the same semi-psychotic attention to detail that I bring to  mythology I also have multiple books (in addition to copies of much-sought-after academic papers delivered at AGC seminars) that cover the fragmentary remains of THE OTHER ANCIENT GREEK  COMIC PLAYWRIGHTS!  Yes, you read that right, and my fellow AGC geeks know how hard that info is to come by, so even hard-core fans of Aristophanic comedy will be treated to what I hope is a fresh perspective on the topic. Thank whoever for the internet, where virtually ANYTHING can be tracked down if you try hard enough.


Aristophanes is considered the greatest political satirist of ancient Athens, the cultural center of a large part of the world at the time. During the low 400’s BCE and high 300’s BCE he wrote approximately 40 comedies, of which only 11 have survived in “complete” form. His contemporaries, and there were dozens, were not so lucky. None of their works have survived in their entirety. Period. Today we have only fragments of the work of the other ancient Greek comedians, including the other 2 members of AGC’s Big 3 – the 2 joining Aristophanes in that trio being Cratinus and Eupolis. Of Susarion, credited with pioneering comedy in the 6th Century BCE, only his name has come down to us. Not even fragments of his plays survive.

The reason for the odd survival rate of Aristophanes’ works compared to the ancient Greek comedians who came before and during his period of activity is easy to explain. Aristophanes was Continue reading


Filed under Ancient Greek Comedy