Daily Archives: June 6, 2009

Frank(lin)ly speaking

If you want to get a look at the train wreck that was Auburn football last year, Tony Franklin is more than willing to pull back the curtain. (h/t CollegeFootballTalk.com)

According to Franklin, the main problem was a healthy dose of paranoia.

“It was the most unusual place I’ve ever been,” Franklin said of the Auburn program. “No one liked anybody else. There was this deep distrust of everybody. The coaches didn’t trust the administration, the administration didn’t trust each other or the coaches. It was very strange and very unnerving. You would walk down the halls and there would be tension you could just feel.

“No one would speak to you or even look at you. The coaches were all paranoid and didn’t trust anyone in the administration. They all felt like the administration was out to get them and they stressed out over everything that happened. “

That in turn put a huge amount of pressure on Tuberville.

“I told Tommy several times that I was simply astounded by the success that he and those coaches had there given the environment around that program,” Franklin said. “There were so many people putting so much stress on Tommy that I don’t know how they did it.

“Whenever you’re the leader of a team or a company or whatever and you’ve got people putting as much pressure on you as what was placed on Tommy, it trickles down to everyone else. And you could see it in that staff.”

Which may explain this:

Franklin was also troubled by the constant talk about religion within the athletic department. From Tuberville to Jacobs to most of the assistants, the talk of God and prayer never ended.”That’s all they do is pray — and talk about praying and religion,” Franklin said. “It’s a constant thing with them, and it’s just overwhelming at times. A lot of people use religion as a crutch, and I think that’s the case there. Every word coming out of their mouths is something about religion, and most of it is just a joke.

“I don’t want to come off as anti-religion or that I’m not a Christian, but the best people in the world — the ones who do truly great things — they just do good things for people. You don’t know most of the time if they’re Muslim or Christian or anything else, because they never talk about it. But it was constant with them, and it was uncomfortable sometimes. When you talk about your religion so much, it comes off as fake or phony. That’s the way I think of several of those people (at Auburn) as fake.”

Fun times, in other words.  For such a smart guy, Franklin’s decision to take the job comes off as a pretty dumb one in hindsight, as even he admits.

In fact, Franklin is angrier with himself, saying he was seduced by the money and allowed his ego to get the best of him instead of “using common sense.” He also downplayed the way he was treated and the effect it had on him.

“It just wasn’t the right move for any of us — it was a mistake by all of us,” Franklin said…

I wonder how much things have changed with the new staff.

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

UPDATE: Will Collier yawns.

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Filed under Auburn's Cast of Thousands, Tony Franklin - Misunderstood Genius

The next big thing

I guess with pieces by Rivals and Sports Illustrated on the subject, we’ve entered the era when accessing Twitter and Facebook by college football coaches has gone mainstream.

That didn’t take long, did it?

Here’s a summary of the current state of affairs:

… Under NCAA rules, coaches in Division I and II can communicate with prospects via one-on-one messaging from social networking sites even if a recruit wants to receive the coach’s message as a text. Phone-to-phone text messages and instant messaging, even through a social networking site, remain off-limits. In 2007, Division III prohibited social networking in recruiting along with text messages.

The exception for direct messaging via social networking sites is a change of pace for coaches, who have seen their ability to contact and evaluate prospects curtailed in recent years. The NCAA banned coach-to-recruit text messaging in 2007. And last year, the NCAA barred head coaches from leaving campus to recruit during the spring evaluation period.

Coaches, though, question how long Facebook and Twitter will be permissible as a recruiting tool. Illinois coach Ron Zook, for one, wondered if social networking could be effectively policed or legislated.

“I’m not sure the NCAA understands exactly what it is,” he says. “I sure don’t.”

The ban on text messaging came after recruits complained the constant messages from coaches became too intrusive and too costly. The NCAA looks favorably on direct messaging on social networking sites since it allows prospects to avoid those two concerns. Setting up accounts on Twitter, Facebook and MySpace is free, and users can control how they want to receive messages through the site, by email or by text message. A user also can elect whether to receive messages from particular users.

It strikes me as a bit creepy for fifty year-old guys to be socially networking with seventeen year-olds, but if everyone is happy, who am I to argue?

Plus, there are always the spontaneous uses of Facebook that we can all get behind. (h/t Swamp Things)

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Filed under College Football, Recruiting, Science Marches Onward, The NCAA

Saturday morning buffet

Let’s see… a little fruit… maybe a bagel with a shmear of cream cheese…

  • Nothing like a little coachspeak to start out with, here from Bobby Petrino talking about the oft-sidelined Ryan Mallett:  “We’ve been working with him for some time of not throwing the full hummer…”
  • I’m glad to see this guy get some well deserved love.  He’s a great player.  It’s surprising that he doesn’t receive more acclaim than he does.  Of course, he is stuck with Juice Williams as his quarterback.
  • 11,230 Tennesseans vote for the greatest football coach in state history, and Junior can’t even crack the top five?  I bet Billy Murphy never signed a recruit as big as Bryce Brown.  Priorities, people.
  • One reason for Gator players staying is that leaving Gainesville permanently might be a probation violation for the arrested ones.   Get your chemistry where you can, Corch.
  • Here’s a tentative fall TV schedule for Disney’s football broadcasts.

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Filed under Big Ten Football, Don't Mess With Lane Kiffin, ESPN Is The Devil, Gators, Gators...