Lorenzo Mauldin and oversigning, ftw

Towers has done a terrific job following the Mauldin saga, so today’s followup should be of interest.  But in some ways, it seems we can say that things worked.  Mauldin was presented with viable choices which he weighed in making a decision to spurn his first pick.  While the timing certainly wasn’t ideal, the process in the end demonstrated the value to a recruit of taking the time to explore and understand his true options.

It’s a black eye – deservedly so – for South Carolina.  Going forward, will that have any impact on the super prospects like Clowney?  Of course not.  But Clowney’s not the type of recruit that Spurrier builds his overall class numbers on so that he can pick and choose at the end.  Those are going to be the Lorenzo Mauldins of the recruiting world.  There are a bunch of them every year.  And they’re going to hear a lot about how Mauldin’s and Montgomery’s recruiting went.  You have to hope that with more sunshine, there’s more rejection as a result.  If nothing else comes out of the SEC spring meetings in June, it would be nice to see Slive push for ways to make the process more visible to recruits so they and their parents can make better informed decisions.

If that happens, one positive result would be that coaches who don’t play fair would see that reflected in their efforts to oversign.  No, that’s not a be all and end all to the problem.  But it’s not a bad place to start.

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UPDATE: Michael Elkon adds some pertinent thoughts.

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UPDATE#2: Towers’ followup interview with Mauldin is here.  Money quote:

“South Carolina was, you know, planning on me signing with them after prep school,” said Mauldin, a 6-foot-4, 240-pound senior. “I don’t believe they thought I would make the [qualifying test] score. It kind of made me feel like they were wishing for me to not make the score.”

‘Ya think?

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70 Comments

Filed under Recruiting

70 responses to “Lorenzo Mauldin and oversigning, ftw

  1. 69Dawg

    It’s just a business dog nothing personal.

  2. Go Dawgs!

    Anything that helps to foster animosity towards the OBC is fine with me, but I’m ready for the powers that be to tackle this problem so it will no longer be a story. That’s not a dig at you, either, Senator. It’s the topic of the offseason, and you do a good job of giving comprehensive coverage to anything that affects UGA football either directly or indirectly. I’ve just got story fatigue.

    • Texas_Dawg

      I’ve just got story fatigue.

      Same here. Just as I did with steroids in MLB.

      That’s why I want oversigning removed from the game. So that we don’t have to talk about it anymore and the results of the game will once again have some legitimacy when the cheating is removed.

  3. TimRankine

    There are many things wrong with the NCAA and intercollegiate athletics. To name a few: the win-at-all-costs mentality of donors and coaches, phony classes created so that “student-athletes” can get A grades (cake baking, e.g.), pay-for-play, the influence of agents, the number of scholarships at tax-payer funded universities given to foreign recruits (in basketball, primarily; shouldn’t we insist on favoring our own citizens over hoopsters from overseas?), bogus NCAA graduation stats (six years to complete four), the pervasive effect that television rights and scheduling have over academic concerns.

    Oversigning is problematic too, but it is far from the only or the biggest problem out there, and I think it gets an undue amount of attention. Not to suggest that the Senator or anyone else is driving the debate on oversigning (except for a sanctimonious few), but it doesn’t bother me near as much as some of the other crapola that should be given higher priority.

    • Texas_Dawg

      Oversigning is problematic too, but it is far from the only or the biggest problem out there, and I think it gets an undue amount of attention.

      What are some bigger problems that deserve more attention than they currently get?

  4. malcolmkass

    Why did he sign with S. Carolina if he didn’t think they really wanted him?

    • Texas_Dawg

      Why did he sign with S. Carolina if he didn’t think they really wanted him?

      He didn’t sign with them. They pulled his offer the day before Signing Day. Via a fax to his school.

  5. Texas_Dawg

    There are a bunch of them every year. And they’re going to hear a lot about how Mauldin’s and Montgomery’s recruiting went. You have to hope that with more sunshine, there’s more rejection as a result.

    Not a chance.

    18-year-olds are invincible so they would never be victims of oversigning. And many of the African-American targets of this Deep South racket unfortunately have very poor advisors and little to no adult guidance. Nick Saban, Les Miles, Steve Spurrier, and millions of their predominantly Southern, politically well right-of-center, white fans know and bank on this… and they actively work to exploit the situation, backed by the institutional support of their schools’ top officials.

    The result is that for every word of caution from a Richt or others affiliated with more ethical programs there are countless other powerful voices in the ears of these celebrated teenagers, easily obfuscating reality into a world of apparent gray.

    South Carolina and officials couldn’t care less about Mauldin going to Louisville. He was a back-up plan from early in the 2011 recruiting season. They kept him under their control and greatly limited his options with a major life decision as long as they could before they were finally forced to release him at the Signing Day deadline. Fortunately for Mauldin, a comparable school had room and interest. For many others exploited in this game, the only options once they are finally purged are major academic and career downgrades.

    S-E-C, folks. S-E-C.

    • If it doesn’t matter, why do you care what reporters print about the subject?

      • Texas_Dawg

        Because I’m not thinking the problem will be stopped by Georgia coaches and fans having a few stories to point to with recruits.

        What all these reports are doing though is giving more strength (and awareness of the extent of the problem) to the officials who can change the rules.

        • So you think that, based on media attention, it’s more likely a bunch of SEC schools will change their position than a kid will realize he’s being played with (which, after all, is the lesson Mauldin did learn in the end).

          Not sure I’m buying that.

          • Texas_Dawg

            You might find a few kids well-advised and experienced enough to be swayed by such arguments, even in the face of dozens of powerful pros and thousands more fans and peers heavily spinning away such arguments. But there are countless others who won’t even hear about such stories. Many, many times more recruits than are necessary for oversigning programs to still fill teams loaded with talent. Especially when considering that the 5-star recruits will have even less reason to believe they would ever be victims of oversigning.

            But on the other hand, the greater attention to this from the media and fans, is clearly giving officials more power to speak out on this. The WSJ is not some random blog. It’s an internationally read, highly influential, highly-respected newspaper. When it writes 3 embarrassing articles on SEC oversigning within a few months, that doesn’t just register with a few blogs. It lands on the desktops of every top official at every school, conference, and governing body in the game.

            The articles may be dismissed by many of the officials at the oversigning schools, but over time (if not immediately with the most conscientious of them) it is bound to wear on them. Because the articles lead to e-mails from alumni and others, to discussions at conferences, to questions from their peers at other programs, and so on.

            Steroids in MLB weren’t eliminated (effectively anyway) overnight. They were eliminated through a slow and steady build-up of awareness leading to a tipping point of condemnation, advanced by the media and Congress, over nearly a decade. In 2000, someone calling Rafael Palmeiro a complete fraud would have been called a zealot, obsessed, whatever. “So maybe he juices and hits a few more HRs than he would have. Who cares?” In 2011? The overwhelming verdict of MLB fans: Rafael Palmeiro was a complete fraud. Great baseball player? Maybe, probably, yes, no, who cares: Complete. Fraud.

            Nick Saban is a complete fraud. Watch. It’s going to be beautiful.

            • Serious question, Texas_Dawg: was Saban oversigning at LSU? I’m wondering how long this has been part of his yearly routine.

              • Dog in Fla

                Not Texas_Dawg. Have no idea whatsoever about how long Nick has been oversigning. But Nick had to have known he could oversign at LSU, if needed, when he made his guarantees of success in the interview with Emmert for the LSU job:

                “Saban got right to the point. He said he would have a much better chance winning a national championship at LSU than he would at Michigan State. It went on for three hours. Finally, Saban is saying, ‘At LSU, I’ll win an SEC championship in three years and I’ll win a national championship in five.”

                http://www.nola.com/lsu/index.ssf/2010/05/ncaa_president_mark_emmert_has.html

                It’s so unlike Nick to be boastful. Maybe he’s just balls to the wall in employment interviews.

                Nick may not have even needed to oversign at LSU. Not because the population of Lousiana is so high but because LSU has no meaningful in-state competition for Louisiana players.

                • LSU is a coach’s wet dream. Probably the nation’s easiest job in terms of recruiting advantages. Yet Miles is one of the more notorious of the oversigning crowd. And it’s not like Saban is exactly dealing with a challenging recruiting situation in Tuscaloosa.

                  • Texas_Dawg

                    LSU hadn’t been that before he got there. Yes, there is a lot of talent in the state, but Austin, College Station, Norman, etc. are mere hours away and spend a ton of time recruiting in Louisiana.

                    Saban came in, greatly increased the numbers being signed by purging the busts each year as he does at Alabama, and thus grew his rolling 4-year roster by an extra 20 mulligans in that talent pool.

                    Les Miles?

                    Mediocre coach at Oklahoma State. Finished better than fourth in the Big 12 South only once (3rd in 2003) in 4 tries. Never lost fewer than 4 games. LSU? Different story. He can oversign, kick players out of school, fill QB holes with JUCO players with very recent sexual battery convictions, and so on. Huge advantage stuff that is largely banned elsewhere.

              • Texas_Dawg

                Serious question, Texas_Dawg: was Saban oversigning at LSU? I’m wondering how long this has been part of his yearly routine.

                While high total signing numbers over several years doesn’t necessarily indicate the existence of oversigning, it does suggest: 1) a stronger likelihood of its existence, and 2) other serious concerns even where oversigning hasn’t occurred. (For example, Auburn signed 60 players in the 2009 and 2010 but was never actually oversigned because it purged a boatload of players via the highly questionable “undisclosed violations” and medical DQ dismissals between spring 2009 and January 2010.)

                Looking just at total numbers and concluding oversigning has happened is unfortunately a common mistake made by many, including many journalists. For instance, some have pointed to several Big 12 teams having signed as many players as several oversigning SEC programs over recent years. But the mistake there is that the Big 12 signings are naturally higher due to several programs (e.g. Baylor, Kansas State, Iowa State) signing far more JUCO players than SEC schools do. So the natural turnover due to expired eligibility is much higher at these schools.

                All that said, Saban’s LSU class sizes:

                2000: 28
                2001: 27
                2002: 26
                2003: 28
                2004: 28
                Total: 137

                Oversigning or not (and it almost surely was), that is an absurd total.

                The guy is a fraud.

                He was a mediocre coach at Michigan State who produced one 2nd place Big 10 finish after 5 tries and then bailed to what was at the time only a slight job upgrade, if not a lateral move. But in a tragically common scenario in American history, a savvy but extremely unethical Midwesterner exploited highly corrupt and unethical Southern institutions to operate a scheme victimizing working class blacks. (Les Miles and Bobby Petrino have followed in his footsteps in this regard.)

                Saban was quickly deceived by his own scheme though and began to believe he was a special coach, so he jumped to the NFL, where he once again was proven to be a very mediocre football coach. To his credit, he was savvy enough to quickly remember that he is nothing without the huge advantage of a much larger rolling roster than his peers, so he quickly found another corrupt Southern state institution willing to let him run his operation.

                So here we are.

                A total fraud. I’d tell it to his face and would love to have the chance to do so. I have no doubt that he knows it though. That’s why he is fighting this till the bitter end, even to the point of document redacting, blatantly lying to the press, and so on. A truly great coach would never bother with all this. He’d drop the scheme, knowing that he could beat other coaches on more even ground.

                After Congress called him out and Mark McGwire saw the battle was lost, he quickly bolted from the game and went into hiding for nearly a decade. He was so panicked about what he knew was coming that he left $30 million and career records on the table.

                Saban stocked up big the last 2 years, oversigning by 21 players, even in the face of growing investigations from major outlets like the WSJ. Once SEC oversigning is effectively banned (hopefully this June) Saban will let the build-up run its course for a few more years and then bail right before the inevitable 7-5 seasons come once again. Just as McGwire was not going to be left hitting 20 HRs all of the sudden. Not even for $30 million.

                He’ll jump to a high-paying consulting or sports agency gig and only the people nerdy enough to even remember what oversigning was and how it worked will know what a total fraud he was.

                • Thanks for clarifying regarding Saban’s numbers at LSU. However, do you really believe that Saban’s oversigning practices have made that big of a difference in his success at LSU and ‘Bama? I have trouble believing that. Saban would have plenty of talent at ‘Bama to continue winning football games without oversigning. To me, what strikes me about Saban is that he’s willing to go to great lengths to oversign despite the relatively minimal gains, which definitely shows him to be an unethical, power-hungry asshole but doesn’t necessarily say much about his strategical acumen. His record at Michigan St. was good considering the historical precedent there. You can’t call Saban’s MSU run mediocre just because it doesn’t measure up to what Michigan and Ohio St were doing at the time. The expectations and resources are entirely different. Is Mack Brown a mediocre coach because he didn’t win national titles at UNC? As far as the NFL comparison goes, many great college coaches have failed in the NFL, so I don’t think that tells us much.

                  • Texas_Dawg

                    Thanks for clarifying regarding Saban’s numbers at LSU. However, do you really believe that Saban’s oversigning practices have made that big of a difference in his success at LSU and ‘Bama? I have trouble believing that. Saban would have plenty of talent at ‘Bama to continue winning football games without oversigning.

                    30-40 more mulligans every 4 years?

                    Yeah, I believe that is an astronomical upgrade in talent.

                    When you get 30-40 mulligans every 4 years you don’t have to deal with such nuisances as, say, playing true freshmen offensive linemen in the two best years of your superstar QB and RB. Whereas such things occasionally happen due to rare rashes of injuries and busts at non-oversigning schools – turning 14-0, 13-1 years into 11-2, 10-3 years – at oversigning schools you get to just purge those injuries and busts 2 years earlier when the problems developed, thus allowing you to have junior and senior loaded OLs ready to block for the superstars you landed at the skill positions.

                    Again, that the advantage is so huge is very obvious by simply looking at how much Saban is fighting to keep this cheat.

                    • You’re probably right, and I’ll have to admit that I’m more convinced by this argument than many of your others. I can’t help but think, though, that Saban will simply find other ways to bend the rules and gain competitive advantages, and even if he doesn’t, I doubt he’ll be suffering a 7-5 season anytime soon, considering that whatever effects him will effect the rest of the SEC West, too.

                    • I should add, though, that it’s probably not a good thing that you’re more persuasive about competitive advantage than the real issue here, the welfare of student athletes.

                    • Mayor of Dawgtown

                      Sorry GM but the competitive advantage issue is damn important and TD has hit a home run in his analysis about Saban IMO ( except for the race angle–Saban takes advantage of everybody–he’s an equal opportunity cheat).

    • Turd Ferguson

      “… and millions of their predominantly Southern, politically well right-of-center, white fans …”

      I’m afraid I don’t see the relevance of this information to the issue at hand. Or is it supposed to be an irrelevant smear?

      • Texas_Dawg

        I’m afraid I don’t see the relevance of this information to the issue at hand. Or is it supposed to be an irrelevant smear?

        How is that even a smear? I am a Southern, politically right-of-center, white male, fwiw.

        Pointing out the very obvious reality that a large group of people culturally inclined to downplay the disadvantages of Southern black communities, culturally inclined to oppose regulation, culturally inclined to put football wins ahead of seemingly peripheral ethical issues, and so on… is far from being irrelevant or a smear.

        • Texas_Dawg

          I meant to say, pointing out that such obvious realities matter is far from being irrelevant or a smear.

        • HackerDog

          +1 for arguing that oversigning is the Republicans’ fault.

          +2 for feigning ignorance on the smear. “I’m not trying to smear southern whites. I’m just pointing out that they’re racists who are committed to keeping blacks under their thumbs.” ;)

          +3 for resisting the urge to bring up the Nazis in reference to this topic.

          • Texas_Dawg

            -1 for being really confused about what was said about politics.

            -2 for being even more confused about what was said about race.

            • Dog in Fla

              +(Expletive) 10 to both HackerDog and Texas_Dawg. I’ll try to summarize –

              + and – 1:
              From: Gene Chamblin
              Get over it! It’s getting harder and harder to suffer you liberal idiots.
              DOYEL: I can deal with being called “a child molester pedophile AIDS-infected little (deleted) who makes (deleted) up.” But I draw the line at “liberal idiot.” Also, are you suggesting that Republicans are OK with the way Les Miles summoned a scholarship player from his dorm room to tell him his scholarship was gone?
              http://www.cbssports.com/columns/story/13748605/hate-mail-how-is-this-my-fault

              + and -2:
              Socialist commentator Randy Newman re Blacks all over the country in cages. SERE school tiger cages. Drinking tiger blood.

              + and – 3:
              Adolph interviews Gaddafi on his response to oversigning:

              and what the picket lines on the Plantation may look like

              http://newsjunkiepost.com/2011/02/20/may-1933-hitler-abolishes-unions/

            • HackerDog

              -1 for making an idiotic statement and not having the courage to stand by it.

              You’ve really jumped the shark from making logical and credible arguments that many coaches act immorally in their oversigning practices to arguing that racist, southern, conservatives are behind a huge conspiracy to do things that piss you off.

              You should have the courage to stand by your arguments. Don’t try to hide your tin foil hat after someone points it out.

              • Texas_Dawg

                Ha. I completely stand by what I said.

                I just don’t stand by your idiotic misinterpretation of what I said.

                • Hackerdog

                  I read you statements correctly. You just don’t like the stupidity of your opinions being pointed out. Let’s look at your exact words again, shall we?

                  “And many of the African-American targets of this Deep South racket unfortunately have very poor advisors and little to no adult guidance. Nick Saban, Les Miles, Steve Spurrier, and millions of their predominantly Southern, politically well right-of-center, white fans … actively work to exploit the situation…”

                  So, by your own words, white, southern conservatives actively work to exploit black kids. If you didn’t mean this, then you shouldn’t have written it.

                  Again, I think oversigning is an issue that deserves to be addressed. But by idiotically assigning the blame to white, southern, conservative bogeymen, you’re not helping your cause in the least.

          • Sponge

            This is hardly a new argument. Terrence Moore has been calling it a plantation system for the past 20 years.

    • Mohammar

      It’s a mystery to me why pro wrestling and monster truck fans are not in the extreme right hand upper quadrant of the chart. Everytime I go to one of those, I see Tea Party people.

      • Texas_Dawg

        It’s a mystery to me why pro wrestling and monster truck fans are not in the extreme right hand upper quadrant of the chart. Everytime I go to one of those, I see Tea Party people.

        Pro wrestling: Mexicans.

        Monster trucks: working class whites and union members all over the rural Northeast and Upper Midwest. Long-time Democrats. (Same people who balance the NFL out near the middle while CFB – largely the domain of upper middle-class, college-educated, suburban Southerners, Midwesterners, and Westerners – ends up being just rightwardly shy of the PGA Tour.)

  6. Texas_Dawg

    Thanks for continuing to highlight the problem of oversigning, Senator.

    Great job.

    You are going to increasingly hear about “story fatigue” and get comments telling you to move on or get over it. I understand the sentiment as it’s a pretty complex topic and many people don’t understand how badly it is wrecking the sport, how badly it is cheating the hard but ethical work of UGA players, coaches, and officials, and tarnishing the brand and reputation of the school they work so hard to build up.

    The problem is that these people also then want to point to 5 MNCs in a row as a sign of SEC dominance, point to Nick Saban results and say it shows he’s a great coach, etc. That is every bit as silly as saying Mark McGwire was a great baseball player and leaving it at that. No serious person today would ever do that. Doing the same with “5 SEC MNCs in a row” and Nick Saban is every bit as silly.

    • Turd Ferguson

      Speaking of “silly” … here we have a classic example of “If you aren’t as concerned about Issue X as I am, then you’re clearly some sort of moral reprobate who only cares about the results.”

      Everyone needs a soapbox.

      • Texas_Dawg

        Um, that’s not what I said at all.

        What I said leaves plenty of room for people to easily – within a complex issue with which many who have read a lot about it still don’t understand all the definitions – not see why the problem is as serious as it is.

        • Go Dawgs!

          Just so you know, my “story fatigue” on this particular issue doesn’t have anything to do with my inability to understand the “complexity” of the topic or the idea that it’s “wrecking” the sport. I’m actually able to wrap my mind around topics much more complex than this one, which isn’t really all that complex at all. There are programs which are signing more players than they have space for. They’re doing it either out of fear that all of the players they’re attempting to sign won’t qualify, or out of a more malevolent desire to lock those guys in and keep them from rivals, so they’ll play for their school at a later date. I’m not sure what’s so overly complex about that. Also, I agree with you that it’s not a kosher thing to do and it certainly doesn’t pass the ethical “smell” test. However, I don’t know what measuring stick you’re using to say that it’s “wrecking” the sport. The game is thriving all across the country, not just in the SEC.

          No, my “story fatigue” really just has to do with reading what is basically the same article or blog post about it over and over again, and then having someone like yourself basically repeat the same blog comment over and over again. It is indeed a problem which needs to be addressed. Insofar as it affects Georgia, either directly or indirectly, I’m keenly interested. But there are people who are power brokers in our league and others who have said that they’re going to take it on and try to do something about it. So, let’s let them do it and maybe wake me when it’s over.

          • Texas_Dawg

            Also, I agree with you that it’s not a kosher thing to do and it certainly doesn’t pass the ethical “smell” test. However, I don’t know what measuring stick you’re using to say that it’s “wrecking” the sport. The game is thriving all across the country, not just in the SEC.

            The complexities I was referring to were the numbers in many cases, the definitions, etc. I wasn’t saying people with “story fatigue” don’t understand the basic concept.

            As far as wrecking the sport, see my Mark McGwire comparison. The initial story of the McGwire/Sosa race was an amazing, post-strike, resurrection of baseball. 70 home runs! Historic records smashed! Amazing performances! The MLB equivalent of “5 SEC MNCs in a row!” and so on. What we now know is that that race was a total fraud. And it and its era are now widely viewed by MLB fans as a serious stain on the history of the game. A game whose history is more valuable to the sport than any other.

            So, yes, CFB is also seeing a great uptick in dollars, attendance, and so on. But the on-field results are completely fraudulent, the titles and records being stolen by cheaters just as during the Steroids Era of MLB.

            Like I said, if you are looking at “5 SEC MNCs in a row!” as something to be praised, you are doing the same thing as raving uncritically about Mark McGwire hitting 70 home runs.

            • Go Dawgs!

              I think you are severely over-rating the impact of “oversigning” on the SEC’s dominance of college football. Perhaps you should go back and look at the “numbers” and consider just how few players are actually involved with this process. It’s something that must be stopped, but at the same time, it’s not like you’re talking about world-breaking athletes who are getting left off of the rosters. If your argument is that the institutions in question wouldn’t have been able to get the world-class guys in without stacking the deck a bit and hedging their bets, I disagree with you. So, when people look back on the current era of college football, if they see it as tainted, it’s not going to be because Nick Saban and Steve Spurrier and Les Miles screwed some kids out of scholarship spots. It will be because the NCAA stopped enforcing the rules on the Ohio States and Cam Newtons of the world.

              By the way, how’s Major League Baseball doing these days? That game didn’t get “wrecked”, either. In fact, you could very easily make the argument that the tainted McGwire-Sosa race actually saved the game from when it really DID wreck itself.

              • I totally agree, Go Dawgs! I’m all for the SEC and / or NCAA adopting stricter, Big-10-like oversigning regulations, but the idea that the SEC’s current run on the national title owes to oversigning or that in 10 years we’re going to look back at oversigning as CFB’s version of the MLB steroids scandal is preposterous. There’s a much better chance that something coming to light about the NCAA’s selective, possibly financially motivated inconsistencies in its application of its regulations will have that kind of effect on CFB’s image.

              • Texas_Dawg

                I think you are severely over-rating the impact of “oversigning” on the SEC’s dominance of college football. Perhaps you should go back and look at the “numbers” and consider just how few players are actually involved with this process.

                I have. 30 to 40 mulligans every 4-5 years is a huge advantage. If you don’t understand why being able to trade Kevin Perezes, Brandon Bogotay’s, etc., for thirty to forty more shots at superstars every 4-5 years is a huge advantage, then I don’t know what to tell you. I don’t believe you are an idiot, so clearly something else is going on here if you are really going to seriously claim that.

                And by the way, Georgia coaches and officials are very clearly livid about this issue, realizing how badly they are being cheated on this. Mark Richt can’t scream it any louder without naming specific names and starting a public war that wouldn’t change anything. It’s a shame you and many Georgia fans say these UGA officials should just get over it because it’s not that big a deal. Nick Saban certainly supports your approach though.

                By the way, how’s Major League Baseball doing these days? That game didn’t get “wrecked”, either. In fact, you could very easily make the argument that the tainted McGwire-Sosa race actually saved the game from when it really DID wreck itself.

                I don’t know if you are a serious MLB fan, but I don’t know of any who don’t look at that era as a joke.

                • Go Dawgs!

                  Since you like block quoting so much, go back and block qu0te the line of text in any comment that I’ve ever posted on this subject where I said people should get over it and that it’s not a big deal. I’ll wait. No, Tex, what I said was that the problem’s been fleshed out and people like you are just shouting the same thing over and over again and it’s annoying and it’s not changing a damn thing.

                  Further, I didn’t say that people didn’t think the “steroid era” wasn’t a joke. However, I’ve still got a t-shirt that celebrates the Atlanta Braves’ 1995 World Series title, in the heart of the steroid era and undoubtedly with juiced players on the field. And even with a joke of an era in the immediate past, how badly did the steroid “scandal” hurt baseball? Because all I see is record attendance and payrolls. I guess I missed the part where baseball is “wrecked”. Man… if only I could sign up for getting “wrecked” that badly, I’d gladly run my ship up onto the rocks tomorrow.

                  Texas Dawg, you’re PETA. See, most people think that it sucks to hurt animals, but we also know that they’re animals and people eat cows at times. But PETA people are fantatical and scream and yell and take things to such ridiculous extremes (ie, suggesting that UGA switch to a robotic Uga) that the message gets lost in the fanatical screaming. Worse, many people get turned off to the message entirely. Equating oversigning to the steroid scandal in baseball as a taint on the game is laughable. Search hard among all of the commenters on this blog. I don’t know that you’re going to find very many advocates of oversigning. So maybe you should switch to decaf.

                  Finally, I’m going to go ahead and call the 30-40 mulligans every 4-5 years bluff on you. If you can list 40 players that were either kicked off teams or had scholarships not honored at X school, we’ll talk. But I’ve read a lot of coverage of this stuff. I haven’t seen 30-40 kids per school. So where does that come from? Is it an exaggeration, or has that actually happened? Where, when, and to whom?

                  • Texas_Dawg

                    Because all I see is record attendance and payrolls.

                    Maybe you should look a little harder then. (Or, quit measuring the health of something simply using dollars.) One of the most famous records in the history of the game, one earned by a man who went through a lot of hell in earning it, was beaten by a cheater. A moment that should have been a great celebration of what many of us believe is the greatest sport ever invented was instead a total embarrassment that everyone wished wasn’t happening.

                    And there are numerous other examples in which the game was seriously tarnished.

                    Also, if you’re going to keep obsessing over one word, you can at least use it as I did. I didn’t say the game had been permanently wrecked. I said oversigning is wrecking the sport, as steroids was doing to baseball.

                    You might care about nothing more than how much money is being raised, but I care a lot more about the sporting aspect of the game. And oversigning makes CFB results involving such teams every bit as fraudulent as steroid-fueled HR records.

                    Worse, many people get turned off to the message entirely. Equating oversigning to the steroid scandal in baseball as a taint on the game is laughable.

                    I don’t see why. You don’t even appear to believe that steroids in baseball was a big deal. Just as you don’t think oversigning is any big deal. So you seem to think they are pretty comparable in that regard.

                    Finally, I’m going to go ahead and call the 30-40 mulligans every 4-5 years bluff on you.

                    What’s funny is that, as always, someone who just wants the story to go away but who says they fully understand the topic, proves himself to in fact be rather clueless about the issue. (This is not the first place in this discussion you’ve shown you don’t understand or know about all the arguments and facts involved with the topic.)

                    But anyway, since you are now willing to admit you were unaware of some very basic numbers with a topic you say is no big deal, these are a few examples:

                    Auburn signed 33 more players than Georgia from 2007-2010.
                    Arkansas signed 37 more players than Ohio State from 2006-2010.
                    Alabama signed 38 more players than USC from 2007-2010. 35 more than Ohio State in that period.

                    And so on.

                    Before you go dismissing something as no big deal, you might want to actually learn about it.

                    • Go Dawgs!

                      I know plenty about it. Tell me this, how did Arkansas do in that time period, relative to Ohio State? Auburn lost to Georgia in each of those years you referenced above. They’re currently the National Champion, based on an otherworldly performance by Cam Newton and Nick Fairley. Alabama signed a lot of players, but it’s a bit disinginuous to compare a stable program to one that was bringing in a new coach in 2007. When new coaches come in, old players often move on. And yeah, Nick told several that they couldn’t play for him.

                      Look, you’ve got a point about oversigning. Go back and read very slowly everything I’ve written. Just because I don’t think this is the worst tragedy to ever hit sport doesn’t mean I don’t think it’s a bad thing. I’m glad that steroids are out of baseball. I’ll be glad when oversigning is legislated out of college football. The thing that you are missing is that you don’t have to overstate your argument for it to be compelling. In closing, steroids weren’t wrecking baseball, they were saving it. The home run chase (and Cal Ripken) put butts back in the seat. The reason I use attendance and TV contracts to measure the health of the game in America is because those are the only measurables readily available. You’re appealing to emotional, subjective, anecdotal evidence to suggest the game was about to get wrecked. Message board posts about people thinking records were being tarnished by Barry Bonds did not translate into people turning their backs on baseball. Barry sold out opposing ballparks quite often on the home stretch. And while Barry may in fact hold the “record”, I don’t think you’ll find many people out there who don’t call Hank Aaron the home run king. In short, people dealt with it and they’re moving on. Just as they will with oversigning.

                      So yeah, you’re right in saying I don’t think oversigning is even the biggest problem facing college football. It’s a big problem, it’s now being dealt with by presidents and athletic directors, so calm down. That’s the point.

              • gatorhater27

                “By the way, how’s Major League Baseball doing these days? That game didn’t get “wrecked”, either. In fact, you could very easily make the argument that the tainted McGwire-Sosa race actually saved the game from when it really DID wreck itself.”

                I would say Cal Ripken did more to save baseball than that, though it was entertaining when it happened. Everyone now knows it was a farce, though.

                People loved to watch Barry Bonds, too, and he’ll be going to trial soon, so I don’t think anyone really takes his “records” seriously. I know I don’t.

                • Go Dawgs!

                  And as soon as you realized it was a farce, you quit watching baseball and haven’t seen a game since, right? Or did you keep watching anyway? Because baseball’s doing fine, and that’s the point. It isn’t “wrecked”. His words, not mine.

                  And besides, it’s a ludicrous comparison. The fact that McGwire hit more home runs than he might have without steroids doesn’t equate to the idea that Alabama wouldn’t have won a national title without oversigning. Houston Nutt’s been one of the most notorious oversigners at two schools. Where’s his title? How did Florida win two? They don’t oversign. That’s my point. It’s apples and oranges.

                  • Texas_Dawg

                    It isn’t “wrecked”. His words, not mine.

                    Again, you might want to read what I actually said before you continue with this talking point.

                    The fact that McGwire hit more home runs than he might have without steroids doesn’t equate to the idea that Alabama wouldn’t have won a national title without oversigning. Houston Nutt’s been one of the most notorious oversigners at two schools. Where’s his title? How did Florida win two? They don’t oversign. That’s my point. It’s apples and oranges.

                    Dude. Are you even trying?

                    1) No one said teams can’t win without oversigning or players can’t hit home runs without steroids.

                    2) Conversely, no one said oversigning guarantees winning or that steroids guarantee home runs.

                    The point is simply that such cheating greatly enhances the ability to win and hit home runs.

                    Ole Miss may still suck, but they are better now than they would be if they didn’t oversign. That is why they do it.

                    All you are doing is denying the very obvious in attempt to hold on to a myth that you were sold. There’s really no point in doing that, especially when your continuing to advance this myth greatly helps programs that are spitting in the face of UGA officials.

                    Good fonking gravity, “S-E-C!” is an insidious drug. Crackheads don’t fight as hard and deny reality as much to keep the drug that’s killing them as much as “S-E-C!” addicts fight to keep the drug that’s royally screwing over their own team. Un-focking-believable.

                    • Mayor of Dawgtown

                      +100. Dead right about everything except the racial motivation. The cheats don’t care about the race of the kids that they kick to the curb. And it DOES greatly enhance the chances of winning which is why they do it in the first place. If it didn’t, they wouldn’t.

                    • Go Dawgs!

                      Show me where I chanted SEC, dude. Again, I AGREE WITH YOU THAT IT IS A PROBLEM. It’s just not the worst thing in the history of college football. I’m a freaking Georgia fan, the fact that other SEC schools are doing it bothers me because it lumps us in with them in everyone else’s eyes. Again. It’s a problem. It’s not this huge cancer on the game.

    • AthensHomerDawg

      Well I for one am relieved that you have finally given the Senator a passing mark here. I was growing concerned and feared for the blog. Thanks.

  7. Here’s an idea. The day before signing day, schools must declare their returning schollys, officially acknowledging how many they can sign on signing day. If they accept a LOI that puts them over that limit, then they lose two scholarships the next season. This will keep them at 85 on signing day, and will prevent players from signing a LOI (and, thus locking them into a school for a year) with a team with no room. The borderline players or late qualifiers will have the option to sign with any other team that comes calling with room. The players are not held at a disadvantage. The teams can maintain some flexibility by adding additional signees to replace transfers, dropouts, medical hardships, etc. after signing day once they declare the freed up scholarship, but before the signing deadline (which is in April, I think?).

    I think Mauldin was not treated well, but in the end, he was a borderline qualifier that still was able to sign a LOI with a BCS program. Almost like no harm-no foul… except the PR hit USCe should take. I am firmly opposed to players that send in an LOI, only to find there is no room, nor is there an option to sign anywhere else. That is the big problem that I think should be addressed.

    • Texas_Dawg

      Here’s an idea. The day before signing day, schools must declare their returning schollys, officially acknowledging how many they can sign on signing day.

      This is a change that Josh at Oversigning.com has long advocated, although I think he would say the teams must declare their “budgets” must earlier than the day before NSD, so as to provide a lot more transparency during the recruiting process.

      I think Mauldin was not treated well, but in the end, he was a borderline qualifier that still was able to sign a LOI with a BCS program. Almost like no harm-no foul… except the PR hit USCe should take.

      What other programs might he have found legitimate scholarship offers from had he not been tricked into largely shutting down his recruiting process by lying South Carolina coaches?

      Also, the other victim here, Jordan Montgomery, is still stuck without an offer.

      Fortunately Louisville came along and thus you are right, South Carolina’s harm done was largely repaired by another school. But others won’t be so fortunate.

  8. shane#1

    My thoughts on oversigning are well known to anyone who reads this blog on a regular basis, so I am not going to bore everyone by repeating them. Do I think oversigning is the worst sin in CFB? Not by a long shot. I am just as concerned with street agents and under the table payments to players or their familys as I am with oversigning. If a kid can be misled by coaches they are certainly being misled by street agents, some of whom are jack leg preachers that make a living off the poor and ignorant. If you don’t understand the term “jack leg” you ain’t from dixie. One more thing, if you think those players at tOSU traded all that stuff for tats I have some beach front property in Villa Rica for sale.

    • Texas_Dawg

      Do I think oversigning is the worst sin in CFB? Not by a long shot. I am just as concerned with street agents and under the table payments to players or their familys as I am with oversigning. If a kid can be misled by coaches they are certainly being misled by street agents, some of whom are jack leg preachers that make a living off the poor and ignorant.

      So you are more concerned with players getting money than you are with them being lied to and exploited and having their future options seriously downgraded?

      How does that work?

      • shane#1

        I don’t give a damn about players getting money, what concerns me is the person giving the money. where the money comes from, and what strings are attached. There ain’t no free lunch buddy, and there ain’t no free money. Money that is hard to trace damn sure comes from something illegal. Now what unlawful enterprise generates the kind of cash that would intrest a street wise young athlete? What do drug dealers have huge stocks of? Drugs and cash. Who did the tOSU players trade thoudands of bucks worth of collectables to? A drug dealer. Get my drift there snowball?

  9. I believe we will all have lost our minds before the season starts-but I must admit reading all that was very entertaining-

  10. Texas_Dawg

    I can’t help but think, though, that Saban will simply find other ways to bend the rules and gain competitive advantages, and even if he doesn’t, I doubt he’ll be suffering a 7-5 season anytime soon, considering that whatever effects him will effect the rest of the SEC West, too.

    And why do you doubt that that would happen?

    In his last 7 seasons without oversigning he was a very mediocre coach. He produced one decent (non-championship) season. The other 6 were terrible.

    Why are you taking his oversigning-fueled records and assuming he wouldn’t be the mediocre coach he has been without it?

    I should add, though, that it’s probably not a good thing that you’re more persuasive about competitive advantage than the real issue here, the welfare of student athletes.

    Ha. Coming from an oversigning program apologist, that’s pretty funny.

  11. Texas_Dawg

    Oh, and you’ve e-mailed or called Harris Pastides, Eric Hyman, and/or other top officials at South Carolina asking them to stop oversigning, right, Gamecock Man?

    I mean, given the amount of time you’ve spent both here and on your own site attempting to spin what was done, you’ve at the very least taken a few minutes to reach out to them to ask that they make changes to ensure no more players get screwed. Right? I mean, especially given that you are now claiming that you are more concerned with the welfare of student athletes than I and others opposed to oversigning. And especially given that you don’t believe South Carolina would be sacrificing any serious competitive advantage by putting in anti-oversigning controls. I mean, surely you have at the very least done this, right? This surely can’t just be about you trying to spin for the home team on the internet.

    • I actually praised one of your arguments above, and this is the response I get. Yes, for the record, I have emailed USC officials and in addition have written several articles on my blog condemning oversigning. I’m not just trying to spin for the home team, and your inability to see that shows what an idiotic asshole you are. I can only assume now that you think all USC, Alabama, etc., fans are “oversigning apologists,” which shows a striking inability to actually read what people say and think about what they stand for outside of petty, provincial football rivalries. This will be the last time I engage you in this conversation. Good day.

      • Texas_Dawg

        I’ve read your blog posts and your comments here, and as you did once again in this thread with your comment to me, you repeatedly impugn the motives of many people strongly opposed to oversigning.

        If you have e-mailed South Carolina officials telling them to stop oversigning, good for you.

  12. Oklahoma_Dawg

    Oversigning sounds like a useful tool coaches can use in order to stock their rosters and eliminate the bad apples.