Daily Archives: July 15, 2011

In life, timing is everything.

Is it possible that Dan Radakovich might have had a… er, personal reason for keeping a lid on Tech’s latest scandal?

Scratch Georgia Tech’s Dan Radakovich from Tennessee’s list for a new athletic director.

Georgia Tech’s recent NCAA troubles and the NCAA’s assertion that Georgia Tech officials attempted to “manipulate the information surrounding potential violations” makes Radakovich untouchable for a school that appeared before the Committee on Infractions just last month for major violations in both football and men’s basketball.

Tennessee should find out sometime next month what sanctions it will face for violations that occurred on the watch of former athletic director Mike Hamilton, who stepped down in June.

In the meantime, Tennessee is left to pick up the pieces now that Radakovich is out.

What’s most troublesome for Tennessee supporters is that the university forked out six figures to the Parker Executive Search firm to help identify candidates, gather information … and conduct background checks.

If that’s the case, how does a guy like Radakovich emerge as the front-runner when his own shop is about to get hit with NCAA penalties?

Way to dodge that bullet, Vols.

About these ads

11 Comments

Filed under Because Nothing Sucks Like A Big Orange, Georgia Tech Football

Freak.

From Sports Illustrated comes this awesome 1983 picture of Carl Lewis (narrowly) beating Herschel Walker in a race.

Let ‘em both carry footballs and we’ll see who wins.

48 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

Is it possible to go downhill after Terence Moore is gone?

Like others, Paul Westerdawg hits on the other part of the story regarding the latest Georgia Tech cheating scandal:

… Any AD who can keep an NCAA investigation a secret for over 20 months is running a tighter ship than most. It also helps to have a hometown newspaper completely and totally asleep at the wheel.

Georgia fans get three days of articles on the transfer of Brent Benedict and a full article on the assistant recruiting coordinator (a guy I had never heard of) leaving while GT is going through an investigation in two sports without a peep.

Now, let’s be fair.  It’s not just the AJ-C which whiffed on the investigation.  We heard nary a peep from the national media  – including a certain Mr. College Football who lives in the Atlanta area and hosts a college football radio show on a local channel – about it until yesterday when the NCAA broke the news.

But there’s no denying it’s an embarrassment to the sports section of a major newspaper that’s clearly seen better days before.

No doubt some of what Paul is critical of is related to public interest.  There are many more fans of Georgia’s program than there are of Tech’s and what resources the AJ-C has to direct in its sports coverage are going to go more in the direction of Athens than the Flats because that’s where the eyeballs are.  If the readership isn’t particularly interested, it’s harder to convince the paper’s editors to be concerned.

But the size of the overall pot the paper draws from has been diminishing for some time now.  Regardless of what biases you may have perceived it to be guilty of, there’s no question that the AJ-C used to do a much better job with sheer coverage of events.  It’s a shell of its former self in that regard.  Bias aside again, that’s a very sad development.  We’re the poorer for it.

All of which brings to mind this post I read yesterday.

… Still, let me suggest there’s at least culturally-significant area of American life that was failed by the “mainstream” media and been immeasurably improved by the blogosphere. I speak, of course, of college football.

I defy anyone to examine the coverage of college football in the twenty leading American newspapers and twenty leading football blogs and not conclude that the latter does a vastly superior job. Places such as Brian Cook’s Mgoblog (Michigan), Every Day Should Be Saturday (motto: Because College Football is Too Important to be Left to the Professionals), Burnt Orange Nation (Texas),  Chris Brown’s Smart Football, Matt Hinton’s Dr Saturday (hosted by Yahoo) and many, many others analyse college football with a depth and sophistication you won’t find in any newspaper or, much of the time, in Sports Illustrated or at ESPN either.

True, some of their coverage involves a measure of aggregation or piggy-backing on “old media” coverage but most of it is a reaction to the shortcomings of “legacy media” coverage of the sport. If the newspapers didn’t cover college football at all, these blogs would still exist. As it is, most newspaper coverage isn’t much better than a basic wire service. Context, opinion, colour and detailed statistical analysis are largely the preserve of the blogosphere.

If “context, opinion, colour and detailed statistical analysis” have been abandoned to bloggers, all that leaves is coverage.  And if newspapers don’t devote themselves to that, what’s left for them?

71 Comments

Filed under Media Punditry/Foibles, The Blogosphere

The Paul Johnson commitment doctrine is about to be tested.

It didn’t take long for this particular shoe to drop.

… Georgia Tech’s “quarterback of the future”  – Dennis Andrews Jr. of Tallahassee, Fla. — told the AJC that the NCAA ruling “will probably open up things a little bit” with his recruiting.

Andrews is the son of former Florida State fullback Dennis Andrews, and said his uncle Carlos Andrews played safety for Alabama when it was under NCAA probation. The younger Andrew committed to Georgia Tech after attending camp last month.

“It may affect my commitment; I’m going to talk to my dad about it and then we’ll see what we want to do,” Andrews told the AJC. “I know my dad isn’t a fan of NCAA probation at all. They had a bad experience with it when my uncle was at Alabama.”

You’d expect probation to be a rich source of negative recruiting against Georgia Tech, but does anyone actually bother with bad mouthing the Jackets on the recruiting trail?  It kinda seems superfluous.

23 Comments

Filed under Georgia Tech Football, Recruiting

Is Craig James worth it?

This is the damnedest thing.

ESPN college football writer Bruce Feldman was suspended indefinitely during a conference call with three ESPN officials this morning.

ESPN Vice President and Director of News Vince Doria, ESPN THE MAGAZINE Editor-in-Chief & ESPN Books Editorial Director Gary Hoenig, and ESPN.com Editor-in-Chief Pat Stiegman participated in the conference call and were behind the decision to punish Feldman.

Doria, Hoenig and Stiegman informed Feldman today that he has been banned from writing for any ESPN entity, is forbidden from appearing on any ESPN platform, is not allowed to Tweet from his Twitter account nor participate in any promotion of a recently-released book in which Feldman played a role.

The reason for the move apparently is in reaction to the editing help Feldman gave Mike Leach in writing his new book.

What makes this bizarre is two things.  First, Feldman’s involvement in the book has been no secret for a long time.  And second, well, you tell me…

… Multiple management and editorial sources at ESPN have told me in recent months that Feldman would only participate in the Leach book project upon direct approval from ESPN management – which Feldman indeed received[Emphasis added.]

Feldman has also acted professionally in not promoting the book publicly in anything he’s written or posted since the book’s release.

Despite that the suspension has provoked a fairly substantial public outcry, the WWL refuses to give an explanation for its decision.  And honestly, it’s hard to figure out what’s going on here.  The timing seems too weird for mere pettiness and if it’s meant to send a message to Mike Leach, how effective is that likely to be?  All I’m left with as a possibility is that Craig James has pictures of somebody high up at the network caught in a compromising position.

Seriously, what’s the point to this?  It’s not like ESPN needs the bad publicity.

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

UPDATE:  Classic corporate weasel statement here.

“There was never any suspension or any other form of disciplinary action. We took the time to review his upcoming work assignments in light of the book to which he contributed and will manage any conflicts or other issues as needed.   Bruce has resumed his assignments.”

Yeah, sure.

31 Comments

Filed under ESPN Is The Devil, Mike Leach. Yar!