Daily Archives: May 13, 2008

This has to be some sort of record.

What’s the most schools any kid has played for in his college football career?

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Filed under The Glass is Half Fulmer

It’s not a fairy tale. It just reads like one.

I love stories where each paragraph, each quote, builds inexorably towards a happy ending.

Take the one about FSU receiver Preston Parker, who currently is facing a felony charge for carrying a concealed firearm and a misdemeanor charge for marijuana possession. Needless to say, this has put a crimp in a promising football career.

But don’t worry, everyone is getting on board the P-Train.

The prosecutor -

“That probably is what we are looking at most strongly,” Assistant State Attorney Alan Johnson said. “We will have an offer out there. A perfectly appropriate resolution to this case would be a reduction in charges.”

The defense attorney -

“That’s going to be an important part of any resolution to Preston … to be able to continue his playing career at FSU,” said his attorney, Jason Weiss of West Palm Beach.

“I’m confident they will treat him fairly and look at his case as any person in his situation who has no prior record.”

Um… that “no prior record” thing? That’s kind of a technicality.

Parker was arrested in 2006 in Tallahassee for petty theft. Those charges were dropped two weeks ago after Parker paid $170 in fees necessary to complete a pre-trial diversion program.

That’s OK. Don’t forget, the prosecuting attorney is a sympathetic soul.

“A young first offender on a non-violent crime, generally we try to see if they have got something going for them so we can give them some sort of a break,” Johnson said.

“We are treating this like any other case. The key is he’s not a football player, but he’s a 21-year-old kid who has a minimal prior record. Our office has bent over backwards to try to make them successful.”

Ain’t that nice? We’re not done yet, though. If Parker is able to negotiate the criminal justice system safely, he’s still got one hard case left ahead of him.

The head coach.

According to FSU athletic department policy, the head coach determines the disciplinary action following a misdemeanor charge, which also is reviewed by the athletic director.

Coach Bobby Bowden said at his annual tour stop in Polk County last month that Parker probably would be suspended for “a few games” this season.

Suspension? At FSU? Join the crowd, Preston.

Let’s let his attorney have the last word.

“He’s extremely sorry for the embarrassment this arrest has caused his family and the university,” Weiss said. “I know he’s committed to making the necessary changes in his life to become a positive role model and influence in the community. Part of that is eliminating the negative influences in his life.”

And they lived happily ever after. The end.

(h/t AOL FanHouse)

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Filed under Crime and Punishment

“I know that paying a guy a million a year sounds outrageous.”

Seems to me that if Daniel Borenstein wants to get his inner crank going on coaching salaries, there’s a much more target rich environment to aim at.

… The age of the rock star coordinator is upon us, sometime in the past year, it seems. All they lack, at times, is entourages. Two SEC schools changed coaches in the offseason, but 13 new coordinators were hired. Several of them have agents. Agents!

Why not? Representatives flock to where the money is and coordinators are making more of it. To get Will Muschamp from Auburn, Texas had to negotiate with Bob Lamonte, who represents at least six NFL head coaches and a couple of college coaches, one being Charlie Weis at Notre Dame…

… At least 13 I-A coordinators made $325,000 last season, according to the Austin American-Statesman. Among those were Florida State’s Jimbo Fisher, who had quite a 2007. After seven years at LSU, the career assistant came to FSU as offensive coordinator in January 2007. By December he was named coach-in-waiting to replace Bobby Bowden at a salary that is now $625,000 per season.

The most telling comment of all comes from Tommy Tuberville – basically, most athletic directors are out of their element when it comes to hiring decisions.

“ESPN has a lot to do with that,” Tuberville said. “I was a product of that. When I was at Miami as defensive coordinator, they talked about me. That’s how I got my name in several jobs. The exposure is really going to help you in the eyes of an AD. Most of those guys really don’t know much about coordinators.”

The reason it’s called a free market is because they’re free to be stupid.

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Filed under College Football, It's Just Bidness

Stupid or lazy?

John Feinstein, May 5, 2008:

… Of course if the NCAA wasn’t so busy trying to take over summer basketball, it could put an end to this in a heartbeat: All it has to do is say the following: if you want your basketball team to be eligible for the NCAA tournament, you must participate — if invited — in the NCAA division I-A football tournament. The BCS schools will squirm and pontificate and threaten to break away from the NCAA but they won’t. Remember, basketball is the money-maker at far more schools than football, regardless of what you hear from the football apologists. [Emphasis added.]

The Wildcat Online, April 30, 2008:

Now, if Feinstein means that broadly, maybe he has a slight case, in that there are far more schools that play D-1 basketball (mainly so they can share in the March Madness revenues) than play D-1 football. But presuming that when he’s talking about “schools” there he means BCS schools, that chart tells you he’s obviously full of crap.

The top revenue generating D-1 basketball program over that same period was Louisville. Its basketball revenues would rank 31st on the football list above. And if you look at the conference averages, no BCS conference generates more basketball revenue that it does football revenue. In fact, only one BCS conference (the ACC) generates half as much in basketball as it does in football. In contrast, the SEC generates four times as much football revenue as it does from basketball. If you look at average profit, the disparities are even greater.

Given that the Wildcat Online compilation predates Feinstein’s screed, in a Google era, there’s little excuse for his misrepresentation. There’s a snotty Costas/Bissinger-related comment welling up inside of me, but I think I’ll save it for another time. I have no doubt there will be one.

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Filed under Media Punditry/Foibles

When cultures collide

For once, words fail me.

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Filed under Georgia Tech Football

It never gets old.

Reading this post at Sunday Morning Quarterback regarding Georgia’s MNC chances reminds me once again that, despite all the denials, the Celebration…

lives on.  (By the way, as one of SMQ’s links demonstrates, is there anything sadder than watching Tech fans seething gratuitously over Florida’s misfortune?)

Be prepared.  It’s going to be part of that notorious ESPN narrative, particularly if Georgia and Florida get off to the kind of start we hope for.

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Filed under Gators, Gators..., Georgia Football

Nine? Nein!

Now this has the potential to be an interesting battle.

If the football coaches in the ACC have their way, Tuesday’s discussion about a possible nine-game conference schedule will be short.

The ACC currently plays an eight-game conference schedule. Coaches don’t want a nine-game schedule because they say it could negatively affect bowl eligibility. Those who want the nine-game schedule point to the potential of more TV revenue.

It’s been coming for a while. The cost for scheduling a non-conference opponent grows each year, either in requiring a reciprocal road game, or in the amount of the guarantee, even for 1-AA schools.

“The reality is that scheduling non-conference home games is becoming very difficult and very expensive,” said Georgia Tech athletics director Dan Radakovich, whose team is playing I-AA’s Jacksonville State and Gardner-Webb this season.

But, as Ron Prince can testify, coaches don’t care about that. It’s all about the wins and losses, baby. Skip the concern about creating unbalanced schedules (that evens out every two seasons and it hasn’t been the end of the world in the Pac-10, either), that’s the part that’s the big problem:

“Do the math,” said Duke coach David Cutcliffe. “If everybody plays another conference game that is six more losses for the league. That could cost us a bowl game or two. So whatever money you make on the front end you could lose on the back end.”

Well, maybe yes, maybe no. Moving to nine conference games probably won’t put a whole lot more asses in the seats, as only two schools in the conference sold less than 90% of their total capacity in ’07 (and you have to figure that Miami’s move out of the Orange Bowl will change its situation dramatically this year). But it would have an impact in another area.

… The move would also be good for television. The ACC’s television contracts have three more years to run. One way to enhance those packages is to take away weak non-conference games and add conference games.

“If you have more conference games then the inventory is stronger and the package is worth more,” said Ken Haines, the President and CEO of Raycom Sports. “It’s pretty simple, really.”

Barnhart summarizes the pros and cons of the debate.

SHOULD THE ACC PLAY A NINE-GAME CONFERENCE SCHEDULE?

THE CASE FOR

1. It makes putting together a schedule easier and less expensive. Schools will have to pay fewer large “guarantees” for home non-conference opponents.

2. It gives season ticket holders more bang for their buck. Fewer non-competitive home games against lightweight opponents.

3. Better TV inventory. Six additional conference games would make future television contracts more valuable.

THE CASE AGAINST

1. The ACC schedule is tough enough. Clemson (South Carolina), Florida State (Florida), and Georgia Tech (Georgia) already have annual non-conference games against the ACC.

2. Unbalanced schedule. With a nine-game schedule, half of the league would have five ACC games at home while the other half would only have four. The teams with five conference road games would be at a disadvantage.

3. Could hurt bowl eligibility. Six more conference games guarantees six more losses spread around the league. It could cost the ACC a bowl slot or two.

The coaches don’t look like they’re on the side of the angels on this one. The case for looks a lot more compelling than the case against. Time isn’t on their side, either, since the cost of business keeps going up.

Tater Tot has some more thoughts on the matter (with a “dadgum” thrown in as a bonus!) here.

****************************************************************

UPDATE: Coaches 1, ADs 0.  One interesting quote from Bobby Bowden:

“I can’t think of a single reason that a football coach would want it. … The difference between getting into a BCS bowl game and a lesser bowl game, it’s not worth it,” Bowden said.

But the ACC is guaranteed a BCS game anyway.  So I guess he’s talking about a second BCS bid for the conference.  Except that’s never happened since they’ve gone to the current BCS format.

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Filed under ACC Football, It's Just Bidness