Sports

Friday, August 29, 2014

Ask the Locals: Brad and Monica Culpepper, Survivor stars

Posted By on Fri, Aug 29, 2014 at 6:07 PM

PHOTO BY HEIDI KURPIELA
  • Photo by Heidi Kurpiela

Last year, when Tampa heavyweights Brad and Monica Culpepper appeared together on the CBS reality show Survivor: Blood vs. Water, neither spouse was new to the spotlight.

Brad, 45, is a former defensive tackle who played nine seasons in the NFL, most notably for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He’s now best known as one half of the “tenacious” ad-savvy law firm Culpepper Kurland. A former Florida Gator and All-American football star, Culpepper earned his law degree from the University of Florida when he retired from pro football 14 years ago.

Monica, 43, is a mother of three who parlayed her role as a former NFL wife into a stint two years ago on Survivor: One World. When executives approached her about returning in 2013, this time with her husband for the show’s Blood vs. Water season, she saw it as an opportunity to redeem herself –– and that she did. Brad was ousted 14 days into the game, but his hard-bodied wife lasted a grueling 39 days and walked away with a cool $100,000 second-place prize.

The Red Hot C-Peppers met at the University of Florida. They’ve been married for 22 years and live on Davis Islands with their three children, Rex, Judge and Honor. Since their memorable turns on Survivor, viewers have wondered whether Brad, a take-no-prisoners fan favorite, would return to the show. The Culpeppers won’t say, but apparently host Jeff Probst has no qualms about leaking spoilers. In a June 2014 interview with entertainment website HITFIX.com, Probst revealed that he’s “going to have fun with Culpepper coming back.”
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Where they spend the most time together: Dad’s Stadium at Plant High School. Brad: “I’ve been hands on in almost every sport my kids have done up until high school, so it’s nice to sit in the shaded stands and watch them flourish.”

Where they get those bodies: Kickboxing at B.A. Warrior Training Center. Monica: “My trainer [Olando Rivera] is a five-time world champion. I was his first client when he retired. As an overworked mom I knew I had a short window of time to get in some cardio. After I started doing it Brad was like, ‘You look fantastic, how do I sign up?’ Now we’re both hooked.”

What they do before bed: Walk their dog around Davis Islands. Brad: “It’s our time to break down the day.”

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Saturday, August 16, 2014

Florida championship mixed martial arts events in Brandon

Posted By on Sat, Aug 16, 2014 at 11:04 AM

This weekend features a plethora of sports options for Tampa Bay fans, including the Tampa Bay Rays three-game series against the New York Yankees and the historic rivalry match between the Tampa Bay Rowdies and the New York Cosmos. For those looking for something outside the box, the Florida Championship Fighting organization will hold a mixed martial arts super show on Saturday Aug. 16, 2014 at The Regent, an elegant facility in Brandon that is typically the site to a wide range of artistic, cultural, educational, philanthropic, social events, weddings and meetings year round.

The Regent in Brandon serves as the host site for the Florida Championship Fighting mixed martial arts event this Saturday, Aug. 16 with a 10-plus bout.
  • The Regent in Brandon serves as the host site for the Florida Championship Fighting mixed martial arts event this Saturday, Aug. 16 with a 10-plus bout.

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Thursday, August 7, 2014

Bill's Sports Binge: Priced out of the market and are you ready for some football? (Spoiler alert: Yes)

Posted By on Thu, Aug 7, 2014 at 8:13 PM

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You can prepare for the inevitable as much as you can, but when it finally hits it can still suck donkey balls. Gram Gram is over a hundred and won't live forever. Summer vacation is great but won't last forever. Last call isn't until 3 a.m. but time marches on. And don't get me started on chocolate shakes. Eventually Gramma's gone, school starts, the bartender tosses you through a plate-glass window and your straw makes that empty sucky slurpy noise indicating dessert is done and your gut is expanding. Good times.

So goes the David Price saga, which came to a predictable, yet very sad, conclusion. It surprised nobody, yet there was hope immersed in the hopelessness until the bitter end that came last Thursday afternoon. When I read the news on my smart-ass phone, I put my head down as a nauseous and bloaty feeling overcame me. Then I farted and felt a lot better. I didn't want him to go, but knew the day would come. I wanted the world for him in the trade, but it makes little mathematical sense to unload somebody because we can't afford him only to acquire several studs equally unattainable with the limited funds at our disposal. It would be like dumping HBO to save money then pick up Starz, Cinemax, Epix and Showtime. We're a basic-cable market and all we can hope for is the occasional swear word to sneak across AMC to make us feel premium-channel rich. Good luck, David. Enjoy Detroit. You can actually buy a house for 100 bucks. So with your new contract, you can probably buy a ... um ... Detroit.

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Friday, August 1, 2014

Big time boxing event takes over the A La Carte Pavilion on Friday night

Posted By on Fri, Aug 1, 2014 at 10:07 AM

Earlier this week, a scuffle at a wedding reception in Middletown, NJ escalated into a huge brawl involving approximately 300 people. Multiple police departments responded to quell the melee, which resulted in two arrests.

On Friday, the A La Carte Pavilion, normally reserved for wedding ceremonies that typically begin and end beautifully, will host a fight of its own, but in a more structured fashion when 18 up-and-coming professional fighters compete in a nine-match card.

St. Petersburg resident Noemi Bosques will be featured in the female flyweight division in the Boxeo TELEMUNDO Ford Summer Series that was set up by promoter Ruben De Jesus and Ivan Echevarria.
  • All Star Boxing, Inc.
  • St. Petersburg resident Noemi Bosques will be featured in the female flyweight division in the Boxeo TELEMUNDO Ford Summer Series that was set up by promoter Ruben De Jesus and Ivan Echevarria.

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Thursday, July 24, 2014

Bill's SportsBinge: Rays, stuff and things

Posted By on Thu, Jul 24, 2014 at 5:20 PM

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To say July is slightly slow in sports is akin to suggesting that the Rays have a wee bit of catching up to do if they don't want to spend October sitting on the couch — a giant luxurious leather couch in front of a 80-inch flatscreen, being fed nachos by topless supermodels so their hands don't get sticky holding their micro-brew. Baseball players are quite wealthy is the general point of the previous stupid joke. The World Cup was a pleasant distraction for the awkward pauses between bar conversations, the All-Star game was great if you were actually there (and you were 12), and of course, the ESPYs (*cough*). So, in order to come up with enough content to fill the necessary minimum requirements to call this steamy pile of words a "sports column," I had to dig deep.


Usually that's when things get weird.


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Wednesday, July 16, 2014

World Cup participants are coming to St. Petersburg

Posted By on Wed, Jul 16, 2014 at 10:50 AM

England National team member and starting goalkeeper Ben Foster will be one of the top level instructors involved at the West Bromwich Albion soccer coaching clinic being held at Eckerd College from July 15-21.
  • Preston Consulting
  • England National team member and starting goalkeeper Ben Foster will be one of the top level instructors involved at the West Bromwich Albion soccer coaching clinic being held at Eckerd College from July 15-21.

The World Cup is coming to Florida.

Well, not necessarily the FIFA World Cup, but a couple of the participants who appeared for the England National Team in the 2014 event in Brazil will be in St. Petersburg from July 15-21 at Eckerd College as a part of a national soccer coaching clinic run by the English Premier League club West Bromwich Albion.

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Saturday, July 12, 2014

Ryan Keenan captures RFC 31 Lightweight Title; Shaq and Marcus Jones in attendance

Posted By on Sat, Jul 12, 2014 at 5:26 PM

Former NBA center Shaquille O'Neal cheered on fellow Orlando resident Ryan Keenan. - CHRIS GIRANDOLA
  • Chris Girandola
  • Former NBA center Shaquille O'Neal cheered on fellow Orlando resident Ryan Keenan.

Tampa turned up in numbers and style on Friday night for another version of the Real Fighting Championships at the A La Carte Pavilion. Former NBA center Shaquille O’Neal and former Tampa Bay Buccaneer defensive end and Ultimate Fighter Marcus Jones were among a sold-out crowd that saw an 11-bout fight card highlighted by the Florida State Lightweight Title match between Ryan “Who Dat” Keenan and Ivan “Angry Bird” Delvalle.

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Friday, July 11, 2014

Mixed martial arts takes over the A La Carte Paviilion

Posted By on Fri, Jul 11, 2014 at 7:36 AM

Scenes from RFC 30, Turf War, the last Real Fighting Championships event held in February earlier this year.
  • RFC website
  • Scenes from RFC 30, Turf War, the last Real Fighting Championships event held in February earlier this year.
Now entering its ninth year, the Real Fighting Championships will have its biggest fight card in its history when Newbreed — RFC 31 takes over the A La Carte Pavilion on Friday starting at 8 p.m.

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Sunday, July 6, 2014

Bill's Sports Binge: World Cup post USA, never over with the Rays and slow sports days

Posted By on Sun, Jul 6, 2014 at 9:53 PM

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Great googly-moogly, it's hot (did I mention I was recently promoted to the rank of captain of the obvious? It's pretty sweet). As I type this sports mess, it's currently 94 and cloudy. Cloudy. If the sun peeks through it will cut like a laser beam and your body will explode in a mess of sweaty balls of fire. It is so hot (how hot is it?) that you can fry an egg on the sidewalk, my seat-belt buckle and in my pants. It's also the time when we celebrate our nation's independence by further aggravating possible heat stroke by spending the day outside hovering over a grill and blowing shit up. America ... F*** yeah.


So in the wake of drinking, sweating and possibly losing a finger, let's get you caught up on the world of Tampa Bay sports.


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Saturday, June 21, 2014

Bill's SportsBinge: Rays nation like the mob, US goes for two and the Washington R-words

Posted By on Sat, Jun 21, 2014 at 9:39 AM

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Godfather III ... the best of the Godfather franchise by far. I could watch that steamy hot scene where Andy Garcia made dough balls with Coppola's daughter over and over again. Did I mention they played cousins? Italian hillbilly awesomeness. If you missed it, grab a sibling, push play and enjoy the express elevator to hell. Not because of the incest, but because by the time the movie is over you'll wish you watched Smokey and the Bandit III, Jaws IV and Rocky V in a row with a wasabi colonic. (That's right, there are three Smokey and the Bandit movies.)

Yessir, that movie was a colossal turd, shaming respectable mobsters everywhere into telling people at cocktail parties they sell shoes. But there was one line that folks will always remember whether they've seen t or not.

"Just when I thought I was out... they pull me back in."

Welcome to the Rays famiglia.

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