Daily Archives: January 20, 2012

There’s only one meaningful tradition in today’s SEC.

It’s the one Roy Kramer inaugurated in 1992:  configuring the conference to maximize television revenues.  And, my friends, that sacred tradition lives on today.  In fact, “lives on” may be selling Mike Slive short.  “Thrives” may be a more accurate description.  Just ask SEC TV hatchet man consultant Larry Templeton.

Television networks want more attractive SEC football games to start and finish seasons in the future, SEC consultant Larry Templeton said.

That will be among the topics discussed when SEC athletics directors meet in February to create 14-team schedules for 2013 and beyond. The major issues remain whether to keep permanent cross-divisional opponents and how to rotate the other cross-divisional game.

Templeton, a former Mississippi State athletics director who heads the SEC’s transition team since the league expanded, said the ADs will also discuss whether to schedule more conference games in the first two weeks and last two weeks of seasons.

“TV wants them,” Templeton said. “For instance, right now the next-to-last weekend of the season is a real weak weekend for us as it relates to games that we want to put on television as part of our conference package. Now that we have more games, we need to space some of them more.”

But wait!  As they say in those cheezy ShamWow commercials, there’s more!  Take it away, Larry:

… TV factors into future SEC scheduling in another way. Assuming the SEC stays at eight conference games and wants to keep permanent partners for every team, it would take 12 years to play every cross-division team twice compared to five years right now. That’s a longer wait for TV to broadcast some high-profile games such as Alabama-Florida and Auburn-Florida.

Templeton continues to float the idea of eliminating round-robin schedules within divisions to create flexibility for more cross-divisional games.  [Emphasis added.]  To stage a conference championship game, NCAA rules require leagues to have two divisions of six or more schools that play round-robin within their division.

If the SEC decided to pursue changing that rule, Templeton said the conference would have to vote at the league’s spring meetings in late May to sponsor NCAA legislation. “I don’t know if any other conferences have any desire to do that,” he said. “I don’t know if our ADs want to do that. I think it’s something we ought to look at.”

Divisions without round robin scheduling… what’ll they think of next?  The step after that would simply be to outsource scheduling to the networks and let them pick which schools play on a week to week basis.  Or the SEC could auction off the weekly schedule to the highest bidder.   (I probably shouldn’t be giving Templeton any ideas.)

Somewhere along the way, you begin to wonder what the existence of a conference is about, other than having an address to where CBS can mail the checks.

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Filed under It's Just Bidness, SEC Football

“He was hands-on, controlling and (some say) egotistical.”

Some would also say Vince Dooley engages in some score-settling with the man who pushed him out of the AD position in his new book.

But this is probably the least surprising news you’ll read there:

… Before Adams made his final decision not to renew Dooley’s contract, the UGA president suggested that Dooley could get the UGA Foundation to call off an audit of Adams’ spending habits and management, according to “History and Reminiscences.”

“There was no doubt Adams was proposing to strike a deal,” Dooley writes.

Bet that was a fun meeting.

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Filed under Michael Adams Wants To Rule The World

You’re dismissed, kid. Just don’t go anywhere.

Charlie Weis’ bouts of dickishness don’t come as a surprise, but there’s some true chutzpah to the story of former Kansas quarterback Brock Berglund that manages to elevate Weis’ reputation.

… On Dec. 27, Berglund, a freshman quarterback, sent athletic director Sheahon Zenger an email asking permission to speak to other coaches, but made it clear he had not decided whether he was transferring.

Seven days later — the last day Kansas could respond without forfeiting its right to hold Berglund to his scholarship commitment — Berglund’s request was denied and, just to make sure it didn’t have to send a separate letter, Kansas also denied any potential transfer request.

That didn’t stop Berglund from submitting an official transfer request on Jan. 15 as well as a notice that he would not be at a mandatory team meeting on Jan. 16. Berglund said he spoke with his lawyer about the meeting and worried that if he attended the meeting it would lock him into another semester at Kansas.

“We had been talking about that meeting for a week or more and just how we were going to handle it,” Berglund said. “In essence, once you show up on campus that day of that meeting, you would have locked yourself in for the next semester. And if you don’t finish the semester you make yourself academically ineligible to transfer. So, that meeting marked a lot more than just a mandatory team meeting.”

Berglund’s failure to attend the meeting was the reason given for his dismissal…  [Emphasis added.]

Catch 22, sucker.  Now go to class so Weis’ APR problems don’t get any worse.  And on the way, don’t forget to thank the NCAA for enabling coaches like Weis to bully student-athletes they didn’t sign and don’t really want.

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Filed under Charlie Weis Is A Big Fat..., The NCAA

Honking about playoffs

I wouldn’t put Michigan AD Dave Brandon on a “best of” list, but I have to admit I got a kick out of his grumble about a football playoff:

“This whole notion of a playoff is ridiculous because I don’t care what you come up with, it’s not going to be a fair playoff. You’ve got a bunch of teams that don’t play one another and play different competition and in different time zones in different conferences in different stadiums in front of different crowds and different weather and suddenly at some point in the year you are trying to arbitrarily decide which one is better and which one deserves to be in a four-team playoff or a six-team playoff.

“No matter where you draw that line, you’re going to have controversy and people who are honked off because their team got cut off.”

True ‘dat.

Now I think there’s a valid argument to be made for a larger playoff than the one we have – that there are enough years when there are more than two programs which deserve a shot at the national title to come up with a new arrangement to accommodate that – but the idea that a college football playoff fills a “settle it on the field” void is ludicrous.

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Filed under BCS/Playoffs

SOD doesn’t write, doesn’t call.

There’s so much entitlement in this story it makes my head hurt.

Understatement, for the win:

Evan went so far as to reportedly commit to Tennessee as an eighth grader. That commitment later proved premature.

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Filed under Because Nothing Sucks Like A Big Orange, Recruiting

Cue Jesse Jackson in three… two… one…

Apparently offering Kevin Sumlin a reported $3 million per year contract wasn’t enough for Illinois to establish its minority hiring bona fides with two of its own trustees.

While Oliver acknowledged the pursuit of Sumlin and Wilson, the trustee flatly stated the process didn’t go far enough.

“We have to increase our effort. Making an opening offer for a hot African-American coaching prospect is not enough,” Oliver said.

Maybe they should have tried to bring Mike Locksley back.

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Filed under Political Wankery

Fairness in fractions

South Carolina figures that while the SEC is busy refashioning the conference’s scheduling parameters, it might as well address the crime of the decade.

The newly expanded SEC has some major issues to sort out with the additions of Texas A&M and Missouri.

That’s helped spur University of South Carolina board of trustee member Chuck Allen to express an interesting change to athletic director Eric Hyman.

In an official letter sent from Allen to Hyman on Wednesday, Allen proposed an amendment to the SEC rules: “For the purposes of football division rankings, intra-division games shall be valued as a whole (1.0) game and inter-divisional games shall be valued as a half (0.5) game.”

Yeah, we can’t validate teams which lose less conference games than any other in the division.  It ain’t right.  Particularly when South Carolina’s got to play two toughies from the West this season.

In 2012, USC gets powerhouses LSU and Arkansas while Georgia plays Ole Miss and Auburn, something Allen called the “luck of the draw.”

“This (proposal) takes the randomness out of the non-divisional schedule,” Allen said Wednesday. “It doesn’t eliminate it, but it does reduce it. It just seems fair that the team that won all its division games would be the division champ.”

The AD actually intends on trucking this to the next conference meeting.

… He said Hyman plans on taking Allen’s proposal to the next SEC meeting.

“When I talked to him his response to me was that he never contemplated it and so he said, ‘Yes, it sounds like a good idea. If you’ll put it in writing, I’ll use it as a vehicle and take it to the conference meeting and we’ll introduce the proposal, argue for it and see what we can do,’” Allen said.

I doubt this goes anywhere, but if it did somehow pass, you know what would serve Allen right?  That would be for the ‘Cocks to sweep their two Western games and lose the division to Georgia because of a worse Eastern record.  Now there’s some fairness that would make heads explode.

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UPDATE:  The SEC essentially tells Allen to piss off.

“The philosophy of the league has always been that all conference games are weighted the same,” associate commissioner Charles Bloom told The State via email.

“Intra-divisional games are taken into account differently in tie-breakers for divisional spots in the championship game. I am not aware of those items being on the table for discussion.”

Also, this.

USC VS. THE SEC

How the Gamecocks have done against SEC teams since joining the conference:

EAST W L T
Florida 3 17 0
Georgia 7 13 0
Kentucky 14 6 0
Tennessee 5 15 0
Vanderbilt 16 4 0
WEST W L T
Alabama 3 5 0
Arkansas 7 13 0
Auburn 0 6 0
LSU 1 4 1
Mississippi 2 4 0
Miss. State 8 6 0

You can understand why this hasn’t come up as an issue before.

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Filed under 'Cock Envy