Daily Archives: December 19, 2007

“That’s the worst sound in football.”

I have no idea when – or even if – South Carolina will ever win the SEC East under Spurrier, but I’ve got to say with the hire of new special teams coach Ray Rychleski from Maryland, the Gamecock coaching staff may very well lead the conference in coaching quotes.

Check these out:

… “I don’t care what anybody says, when anybody takes a new job, they’re not taking a pay cut,” Rychleski said in a phone interview.

… Maryland has not had a punt blocked during Rychleski’s seven-year tenure, the longest active streak in the country.

“Let’s not even talk about that. That gives me the weebie-jeebies,” Rychleski said. “You don’t ever want to hear the double-thump. That’s the worst sound in football.”

… “[Spurrier] said, ‘Ray, I’d like to win a game in special teams,’ “ Rychleski recalled. “I said, ‘Coach, first you have to make sure you don’t lose a game in special teams.’ “

Ah, yes, the old “double-thump”. I’m not sure that’s the worst sound in football, though. What the Old Ball Coach will say to the assistant he’s going to can in the wake of this hire will probably sound worse.

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UPDATE:  Well, look what the cat drug in.  Former UGA DC and current coaching nomad Brian VanGorder joins the fun and games in Columbia as the Old Ball Coach’s DC.  Groo’s take on the hiring is spot on – I guess we’ll learn how smart Pollack, Odell and Thomas Davis made BVG look.

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Filed under The Evil Genius

‘Fake it till we make it…’

David Ching has an interview with Matt Stafford up at his blog that’s worth a read.

The header is a quote from MS indicating that the team knew it was going to struggle with the green offensive line for a few games.

Here’s the funny part:

On Thomas Brown taking 21 hours this semester:
It’s crazy. I really don’t know how he does it. It’s unbelievable. How many classes is that, three or four?

It was seven, five of which were upper-level classes in his major:
Wow. Good luck. I’m not doing that anytime soon.

How does he not know how many classes go into a 21 hour load?  I’ve been out of college for thirty years, and I would have done a better job with the math than that…

5 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

He can’t knock the SEC for this one.

I guess Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany has been so involved in his pissing match with Comcast over cable broadcast fees for the Big Ten Network that he didn’t have time to notice that a crew chief of one of his conference’s officiating teams has a bit of a, shall we say, checkered history, including a bankruptcy with over $400,000 of liabilities listing two casinos as creditors.

Oops.

Now, there’s evidently nothing linking this official to gambling on games, but still, it makes you feel a bit queasy when you observe his crew blow an obvious call in an important game like this…

… especially if you’re a Buckeye fan.

And what does the normally quotable Delany have to say about this mess?

When reached at his home Tuesday, Delany said, “I don’t have any comment on that right now.”

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UPDATE: Now that the horse is out of the barn, the Big Ten will do a little more checking.

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UPDATE #2:  The story, as Ray Goff might put it, is getting “bettuh and bettuh”.

… But Pamon not only was allowed to work in the Big Ten, the NCAA also cleared him to work bowl games, the highest honor for a college football official. According to Yahoo! Sports, Pamon was an alternate for last year’s Fiesta Bowl and had worked the Sugar, Holiday and Independence Bowls in years past…

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Filed under Big Ten Football

When everything old is new again

As we watch the spread option take the college football world by storm, perhaps it’s worth taking this advice into account:

As the spread option becomes the soup du jour, the flavor of the month and the catch of the day, the people who rush to implement it MIGHT PROFIT FROM the study of football history.

They might think twice about their decision to copy the West Virginias of the world if they understood why the T-formation (with the quarterback under the center) originally supplanted the single wing.

Bill Barnes of UCLA was the last of the big-time coaches to switch over from the single wing, and in Sports Illustrated, Sept 24, 1962, he told why:

“In the single wing, it was all specialists. You had to have a center who could snap the ball unerringly while upside down. You needed a quarterback who was a vicious blocker, yet fast enough to stay ahead of your backs. You needed a fullback who could spin and pivot like a ballet dancer but had power to rip a line apart. Of course, the tailback was the core of the team. He had to run, pass, kick and even block and he had to be durable enough to stand up under game-to-game pounding. But probably the hardest man to come by was the wingback. he needed a sprinter’s speed, the niftiness of a scatback and the strength to block an end or halfback who might go 200 or 220.

“We just couldn’t come up with all these men, year after year.”

Now, granted that with the spread option there is no longer the need to recruit a blocking back or a wingback, and the fullback’s (running back’s) requirements are not quite so severe. But if you’re going to run the spread option, the need to recruit the gifted tailback (now called the quarterback) is as crucial as ever, and the fact that he’s going to get hit a lot means that the likelihood of his getting injured is greatly increased. Oops. Better recruit several of them.

And then, as we all know, the instant one of today’s young QB’s realizes that he’s not going to be the starter, he’s as likely to transfer as he is to fight for the starting position, and there you are with your entire offense depending on the health of one guy.

It made more sense to T-formation coaches to divide the labor – to assign the passing duties primarily to the quarterback, and the running duties primarily to the other three backs (known then as the fullback and the left and right halfbacks.

It should be noted that while the spread option is enjoying great success at the college level, not everyone is planning to switch to it.

Writes Scott Wolf in the Los Angeles Daily News,

With the spread-option offense growing in popularity, a natural question is whether USC would consider running it.

But offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian said injuries to quarterbacks running the spread are one reason USC would probably never use it.

“The quarterback takes a pounding,” Sarkisian said. “It even happened to the Illinois guy (Juice Williams). You lose your quarterback and what do you become? Look at Oregon (without Dennis Dixon) and West Virginia without Pat White?”

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Filed under Strategery And Mechanics

Dennis Dodd’s latest mancrush

All I can figure is that Terry Bowden has the proverbial pictures of Dennis Dodd in a compromising position (ugh).

How does somebody write this with a straight face?

… We’re talking about a sure thing. A guy who comes with a built-in discount. Terry Bowden played at West Virginia. Terry Bowden’s dad coached at West Virginia. Terry Bowden is so West Virginia that he might cop to burning a couch or two as a student. You might have heard of him, Ed. If you haven’t gotten about a thousand calls by now urging his hiring, either the cell towers are down or Terry is pursuing monkhood in Tibet.

Either way, there is no downside to Terry Bowden. The record, sterling: a .669 winning percentage. The personality, winning. The coaching pedigree, impeccable. Seems to us there was an undefeated season at Auburn in 1993…

Seems to me there was a 1-5 season in ’98 when Tater Tot walked out on the program, too, Dennis.

Look, I have no idea whether TB would be a good or bad head coach for WVU. But to say that a guy who’s been out of coaching for a decade is a “sure thing” strikes me as being a bit of a stretch.

And as for there being “no downside”, I bet this Auburn fan would beg to differ.

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Filed under Media Punditry/Foibles

Now why didn’t I think of that?

There’s only one way to end this BCS/playoff debate.

With a playoff, of course.

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Filed under BCS/Playoffs, The Blogosphere