Daily Archives: May 15, 2014

Mike Bobo wants us to chill; Pruitt’s on the mother.

Georgia’s offensive coordinator has a message for all us Nervous Nellies out there in Dawgnation:  relax.

Mike Bobo coaches Georgia’s offense, not the defense. But when a concerned fan asked about the state of the defense, specifically the secondary, Bobo jumped in with a pep talk.

That included something Bobo heard new defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt say: “We’re gonna be a hell of a defense.”

In the past week, Georgia has seen cornerback Shaq Wiggins transfer and Brendan Langley move from cornerback to receiver. That came a couple months after safety Josh Harvey-Clemons was dismissed from the team.

But Bobo, from his vantage point, thinks Pruitt will make do.

“I’m gonna tell you this about Jeremy Pruitt: He’s a great football coach in the fundamentals that are gonna make the difference in making a play and not making a play,” Bobo said, speaking at a UGA Day in Tifton. “Obviously sometimes you see a guy moving to offense, you see a guy transferring, you wonder: What are we gonna do?

“But I heard him talking to a guy the other night: ‘We’re gonna get the five or six that are gonna do it our way, and the way I want it done, and we’re gonna be a hell of a defense. And that came out of his mouth. And I feel confident he’s gonna get it done and get those guys ready to play.”

Sounds good.  But… what year was he talking about?

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Filed under Georgia Football

Mike Gundy is a man with more time on his hands.

This is going to sting a little.

Oklahoma State’s football program is taking an APR hit.

And a practice time hit.

Falling just short of the NCAA’s enhanced minimum APR requirement – by nine-one-hundreds of a point – OSU will lose one practice day per week in the coming season. That was the penalty imposed by the NCAA, revealed Wednesday; one preferable to a loss of scholarships or, worst case, postseason eligibility.

Finally, something T. Boone Pickens couldn’t buy.

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Filed under Academics? Academics.

Donald Remy is shrill.

You know, I was kidding about strenuously objecting the other day, but it sounds like the O’Bannon plaintiffs’ decision to abandon their individual damages claims and pursue a bench trial has apparently driven the NCAA to take my suggestion seriously:

“The NCAA vigorously objects to the Plaintiffs’ apparent last ditch effort to change course in this litigation. Because the NCAA was not informed of this decision until hours before this filing was due, the NCAA was not able to adjust any of this filing, save this subsection, or any of its pretrial disclosures to account for a bench trial. The NCAA reserves all rights to seek the appropriate relief in response to the Plaintiffs’ last-minute attempt to change the nature of the trial in this case. Further, in the event the case goes forward as a bench trial, the NCAA reserves all rights to revisit and revise all stipulations, pretrial filings, and submissions that were made today in anticipation of a jury trial.”

If it were me, I’d be fretting a lot more about this:

NCAA president Mark Emmert will testify during the trial of the Ed O’Bannon lawsuit relating to the names, images and likenesses of college athletes, according to court filings Wednesday.

The O’Bannon plaintiffs identified Emmert, former NCAA vice president Wally Renfro and NCAA Division I vice president David Berst as witnesses they want to appear live. All three are scheduled to testify for the defense at the June 9 trial in Oakland.

“The NCAA has indicated that it will check on the availability of the three individuals above to testify during Plaintiffs’ case-in-chief, but that is not sufficient,” lawyers for the O’Bannon plaintiffs wrote. “If those people do testify during the defense case, they need to be unequivocally made available for live testimony as part of Plaintiffs’ case and Plaintiffs need to know that sooner rather than later so they can prepare examination.”

In related news, NCAA spokesperson Stacey Osburn had no comment about these developments and is pondering taking a vow of silence for the duration of the trial.

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UPDATE:  Jon Solomon explains the tactics behind plaintiffs’ move.

Michael Hausfeld, the lead attorney for the O’Bannon plaintiffs, said in an interview that the Keller plaintiffs’ decision to support the NCAA’s attempt to sever the videogame claims made a jury trial “problematic.” The O’Bannon plaintiffs’ individual claims will not be tried in the future, Hausfeld said.

“This was a self-sacrificing move,” Hausfeld said. “The greater issue here is the need to change and reform the system, to fix an enterprise that’s broken and disregards all of the principles that a business responding to legitimate open-market forces would have to.”

Hausfeld said the NCAA strongly objects to the change “because the move actually strengthens the (plaintiffs’) case. Because the case was always about the system, not an individual players’ monetary recovery.”

Hausfeld said trying the individual claims had also become difficult due to the NCAA inserting witnesses who had never filed a declaration in an attempt to “defuse issues and divert attention from the wrongs of the system.” The injunctive case was always going to be tried to Wilken, not a jury, and all that changed is the individual damage cases are gone, Hausfeld said.

When asked what the change means for the Keller plaintiffs, Hausfeld replied, “Beats me. That’s their decision.”

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Filed under The NCAA

“Well, as per NCAA rules, we asked for permission…”

“… to visit with (Carter), but unfortunately that permission was denied by Georgia Tech…”

Yeah, that one’s a basketball call, but I see no reason the Tech AD’s logic – if you want to call it that – wouldn’t apply in a football setting:

“Our practice has typically been to (not grant permission) to the ACC schools and anybody you play in a given sport every year,” he said. “We play Georgia every year. This is not something which is so much a Georgia thing as it is we compete against them every year. That’s a pretty standard industry-wide practice.”

In his transfer, Carter was restricted from transferring either to Georgia or another ACC school. Given that he would have to sit out two years if he were to transfer to another ACC team, it’s essentially a restriction against Georgia.

Still, Bobinski said, the policy is not airtight. If an athlete were transferring due to a coaching change or if there were extenuating circumstances such as a family situation, the school would be willing to adjust the restriction list. However, “none of that applies in this case,” Bobinski said.

That is why he didn’t see Georgia’s 2009 release of Daniel Miller from his letter of intent in order to play at Tech as comparable. Miller left Georgia due to a coaching change, Dennis Felton’s firing, and had yet to play.

“It’s a completely different deal,” Bobinski said. “Robert’s been a big part of our program for two years.”

Um… if it’s “a pretty standard industry-wide practice” to block a player from transferring to a school you face every year, then what difference does it make whether the kid’s suited up for you yet?

Again, the fault here lies more with the bullshit transfer protocol than anything else.  The NCAA is enabling Georgia Tech to behave as it is.  Also, again, it sucks for Carter more than anyone.  But players don’t need a union or some other way of making their voices heard, right?

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UPDATE:  I know you’ll be shocked, shocked to learn that Mark Bradley has weighed in with another classic piece, entitled “Tech won’t let Carter go to UGA, and I understand”.  That he manages to do so without taking even a moment to consider the situation from the player’s standpoint – it’s all about this:  “It’s bad enough when a guy leaves your program; it’s worse when you have to face him.” – is about what you’d expect.  But it’s not even the dumbest point he makes.  This is:

Surely Georgia would have gnashed its canine teeth if LSU, working behind the former Bulldog Zach Mettenberger, had held its late lead in Sanford Stadium last fall. (Mettenberger had been dismissed from the football team and wound up in Baton Rouge after a JUCO stint.) It’s no fun seeing a guy who accepted your scholarship and wore your uniform playing against you.

Did Bradley miss the Auburn game?  And what difference does that make to Robert Carter, Jr.’s future, anyway?

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Filed under Georgia Football, Georgia Tech Football, The NCAA