Daily Archives: March 3, 2014

The Longhorn Network is in business, baby!

DISH and Disney get in bed together.

Seriously, the big news is that the SEC Network has its first major distribution deal.

Now I just wonder how much that’s gonna cost me.

1 Comment

Filed under ESPN Is The Devil, SEC Football

Nobody knows you in North Dakota.

It didn’t occur to me when I read Mark Cuban’s comments about how the D-League is a much more super awesome place than college for 18-year olds to hone their skills/cool their jets until they’re eligible for the draft, but here’s a reason kids might not fall all over themselves to chase Cuban’s dream:

“I think the thing with playing college basketball, especially the players that are good enough to play at high-level schools, they get so much exposure (in college),” Nored said. “Think about how much talk there has been of the freshman focus in college basketball this season. You’re probably not going to get that talk in the D-League because you’re just playing on YouTube every day.”

Now there’s no reason the NBA couldn’t choose to promote players in the D-League to a greater degree… except (1) that costs money (and why spend it when the colleges will do it gratis?) and (2) to the extent that promotion is successful, it’s going to pump up the market value of certain players.

Anyway, interesting point.



Filed under It's Just Bidness, The NCAA

Margin called, gentlemen.

It’s not too late to bail out Saban, Mr. Slive.

One thing, fellas – if you decide to give an eight-man crew a try, how ’bout putting more thought into how it should operate than you did with the targeting rule?


Filed under SEC Football, The NCAA

Sandra Bullock has questions about the 10-second rule.

This is pretty clever.

I await Bert’s retort.


UPDATE:  Well, maybe.


Filed under Strategery And Mechanics, The NCAA

“We all knew it wasn’t going to last forever.”

Can somebody explain Chris Low’s point here?

The cannibalistic nature of the league caught up with it last season, even though Auburn survived an early-season loss to LSU to work its way back up the BCS standings and into the national title game.

Is he saying that Auburn lost to FSU because the SEC was so tough last season?  Otherwise, it doesn’t make any sense.  And even that point seems a little shaky to me.  The SEC’s been tougher in several recent seasons than its 2013 version, with its conference winner going on to win the title game in those years.

Only reason I ask is that I don’t see the conference being any easier this season, even in the face of the league-wide drop off we’re likely to see at the quarterback position.  So is Low predicting another national title goose egg?  Given that the postseason field is expanding to four, I would think the SEC’s odds of winning another title game are better than ever.


Filed under SEC Football

Roll over Joe Barton, and tell Orrin Hatch the news.

Jay Jacobs announces the death of socialism.

Northeastern athletic director Peter Roby said this would widen the gap between the “haves” and the “have-nots” in Division I. What would your rebuttal to that be?

My response to that would be that we’re in a competitive environment, so if one business is doing exceedingly well in what they do, should we subsidize the businesses that aren’t as efficient and effective as we are? Should that hold us back? That doesn’t sound like the capitalism that this country was built on. I think that he’s correct that it will widen it. But I think that also there’s a need for that to be widened. It will put people that are actually competing for the same thing in the same pool or pod together and let them make decisions based on what they can do and what they think is important. Whether it’s us or a league or division that the (Northeastern) AD is in. Give him more stability, so when he’s competing (against) schools in his league, they’re all on the same level playing field (in) recruiting, competition, support services and academically.

Now I don’t have a problem with that… except government giving enterprises making millions and millions non-profit tax exemptions doesn’t sound like the capitalism that this country was built on, either.  On the other hand, it does sound like today’s capitalism.


Filed under It's Just Bidness, Political Wankery, The NCAA

Monday morning buffet

Jump right in and get your week started.


Filed under Auburn's Cast of Thousands, Because Nothing Sucks Like A Big Orange, Georgia Football, Georgia Tech Football, Media Punditry/Foibles, Strategery And Mechanics, The NCAA

Is “agent” about to become a not so dirty word?

You try to save a buck here and there and look what it gets you.

A minor change in the NFL’s collective bargaining agreement with its players, which was signed in 2011, is being blamed for a shift so dramatic, some within the game are fearful that college football’s talent base and recruiting system may never be the same. Put simply: Players are rushing to leave school early and go pro like never before.

This year, there will be at least 98 underclassmen available in May’s draft, a 34% increase from 2013 and an 85% increase from 2010, the year before the latest collective bargaining agreement. The average age of an NFL player last season was 26 years 308 days, the youngest since 1987.

That “minor change” doesn’t sound so minor to me.

For the first couple of decades in which underclassmen were allowed in the draft, teams spent huge sums of money on the top picks. A high draft selection thus could leave a player set for life. For instance, the top overall selection in 2010, current St. Louis Rams quarterback Sam Bradford, got a six-year, $78 million contract before throwing a single pro pass. He received 13 times more guaranteed money than the second round’s top pick, teammate Rodger Saffold.

In an effort to fix the salaries of top picks—and thus prevent unproven players from getting so much money—the latest CBA called for reform. In the 2013 draft, the first pick, Kansas City Chiefs offensive lineman Eric Fisher, got a four-year, $22 million deal, a fraction of what Bradford received. There is also much less difference between picks. Fisher will make only double what the 15th pick in the draft makes, while the first pick in the second round received about a fourth of Fisher’s salary.

And evidently it doesn’t sound so minor to college players and agents.  Which means it doesn’t sound so minor to college coaches, either.

LSU is an unfortunate example of the new world order. It was one thing for the Tigers to lose star receivers Odell Beckham Jr. and Jarvis Landry to this year’s draft; those types of departures are expected. But LSU also lost redshirt sophomore guard Trai Turner, who isn’t considered a top prospect. LSU coach Les Miles couldn’t be reached for comment.

Of course, the NFL isn’t willing to shoulder any blame.

An NFL spokesman said the league “does not agree with the idea that the system is the reason players are jumping early.” The league added that the spike in early departures can’t be explained by the change in pay scale because, after the first round, the majority of rounds in the draft saw few dramatic changes in the pay scale. The NFLPA and NCAA didn’t respond to requests for comment.

Must be a coincidence, I guess.  Still, the pros are among the worried.

This makes for increasingly uneasy drafts, said Pittsburgh Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert, who called this the deepest draft he has seen in 30 years of scouting. “Even though it’s the most talented group that I have seen, I am also worried that it’s probably the most immature group,” he said.

And as we all know, it’s not like there’s a minor league for NFL teams to park kids who need more time to ripen on the vine, so to speak.  What to do?  Well, ask a guy who knows what it’s like to find a place to park kids.

The situation worries Nutt, the ex-college coach, who said that in the late 2000s, a measure was floated at a Southeastern Conference coaches meeting to explore allowing players who left early to return to their teams if the draft didn’t work out. Nutt said the idea, which he agreed with, didn’t get very far.

The Nuttster was just a little bit ahead of his time there.  The proposal makes too much sense now for too many vested interests to sit in a closet for much longer.  I smell an NCAA rule change coming on.  The hard part is going to be coming up with an amateurism fig leaf to explain it away.


Filed under College Football, It's Just Bidness

”It has nothing to do with Texas Tech.”

Craig James says his firing by Fox Sports Southwest has left him ”radioactive” for future broadcasting jobs.  Clearly, this is a man possessed of a very short memory.

Further proof of that?  “He also said he would not rule out another run for public office.”  Dude’s a glutton for punishment.


Filed under The Honorable Craig James

Physician Nick, heal thyself?

When it comes to the HUNH, we know Saban’s got player safety on his mind.

“If you ask the guys philosophically, a lot of them that run the offense, they say we want to wear the defense down and get the defense tired,” he said. “Well, you get the defensive players tired, they are going to be more susceptible to getting injured.”

Perhaps he should be looking closer to home first.

Of course, that could explain all the medical scholarships handed out in Tuscaloosa.


Filed under Nick Saban Rules, The Body Is A Temple