Monthly Archives: March 2014

“There’s always something good happening, there’s always something bad happening I guess you could say.”

And so, the first scrimmage of 2014 spring practice is in the books.  It’s a controlled setting, early on – not to mention it’s the first quasi-game like conditions for an entirely new defensive staff – so it’s not worth getting too deep into the weeds.  But this is a blog, after all, and if you can’t engage in some premature tea leaf reading here, where can you?

A few thoughts:

  • I’m a little surprised by this:  Asked about Drew’s spring, coach Mark Richt said after the scrimmage that the senior has “done alright. He’s been banged up a little bit. I would say he’s not been kicking tail right now. I think he’s got a lot of improvement to do.”  Drew’s 2013 season speaks for itself.  So does that Richt thinks he needs motivating this spring.
  • J.J. Green’s enthusiasm:  Sophomore cornerback J.J. Green’s name also came up in the defensive discussion as he and linebacker Reggie Carter led the defense with seven tackles. Green sported a bandage across his forehead during interviews but was very enthusiastic about his game, pointing to one hit that he specifically remembered… “He is very tough, very physical,” Richt said. “For a guy that hasn’t played defense in a while I really like what he’s doing.”  You get the feeling that Green’s on track to be a contributor this season.
  • The offensive line sounds like it’s living up to all the uncertainty we’ve expected.  “According to the stats that Richt read off to the media, the offensive line allowed 14 tackles for loss and seven sacks, but he believes those stats to be misleading.”  Sure hope so.  (And, to be fair, the defensive line has a significant experience edge over its offensive counterpart.)
  • Chris Conley:  Conley, who scored his touchdowns on a flare route and a double move, said the rain shouldn’t be blamed for the offense bogging down.  Doesn’t sound like he was bogged down much.
  • Hutson Mason sounded comfortable, going 12-for-18 with 152 yards and two touchdowns.
  • Final word goes to David Andrews:  “The good thing is there’s a lot to work on. Also, the good thing is it’s only day seven. We’ve still got eight more practices and then all summer.”

Let’s hope that’s enough.  When’s the second scrimmage?

11 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

$81,499.59, including taxes

Especially in light of the previous story about Auburn’s finances, this sure strikes me as money well spent.

Georgia picked up the tab for the buyout in Jeremy Pruitt’s Florida State contract when it landed the national championship-winning defensive coordinator in January.

The school made a one-time lump sum payout of $81,499.59 to Pruitt to cover his buyout and taxes, according to Georgia executive associate athletic director Frank Crumley.

Both Pruitt and Bobo are under contract now.  (Comparatively speaking in the context of what other SEC coordinators are making, Bobo’s deal looks like a steal for the school.)

16 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, It's Just Bidness

You’ve got to spend money to lose money.

In a year in which it won the SEC and played in the national title game, Auburn managed to turn in an athletic department operating deficit.

Severance payments totaled $2.7 million in 2013, largely for Chizik and his staff after the Tigers went 3-9. Auburn Senior Associate Athletics Director Jack Smith said the athletics department drew upon a cash reserve of more than $15 million to cover last year’s operating deficit.

Jay Jacobs is the bizarro Greg McGarity.

But that’s not even the most remarkable part of the story.  This is:  “Student fee subsidies also prevented Auburn from reporting deficits on its NCAA reports in 2011, 2010 and 2009.”

How do you win a national football title and lose money (but for what you forcibly extracted from students)?  Shoot, Tennessee used to be my gold standard for financial mismanagement in the conference, but at least the Vols have the excuse of not winning anything for a while.

Even Maryland managed to avoid finishing in the red last year.

Maybe Saban’s master plan is for Alabama to spend so much money that it forces Auburn into bankruptcy trying to keep pace.

10 Comments

Filed under Auburn's Cast of Thousands, It's Just Bidness

“Faton and Brice are battling it out.”

C’mon, Coach.  What’s the point of having a scrimmage if the backup quarterbacks don’t turn in better QBRs than the starter?

Leave it to Chris Conley to deliver the “she’s got a nice personality” summary of the day:

He was impressed with Ramsey’s “cannon” of an arm and that the mobile Bauta wanted to play in a regular jersey and have contact.

6 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

Header of the day

There’s so much concentrated WTF going on here that I hardly know where to start.

2 Comments

Filed under That's Crazy Talk

The lighter side of unionization

A high schooler can dream, can’t he?

Quarterback Jaylend Ratliff of Laurinburg, N.C., has committed to Georgia Tech, according to multiple reports.

The 6-foot-1, 195-pound Ratliff also had offers from North Carolina, N.C. State and Wofford. He is rated as a 3-star and the state’s No. 28 overall prospect, along with the nation’s No. 76 athlete.

“I want to win a championship,” Ratliffe told 247sports.com’s Ryan Bartow. “I want to make money. I want to be a Yellow Jacket.”

I don’t care how down you are about the prospect of college athletes getting paid.  If the thought of the genius dealing with the aftermath of unions and O’Bannon doesn’t bring a smile to your face, there’s something wrong with you.

4 Comments

Filed under Georgia Tech Football, It's Just Bidness

In Athens, accountability is like the weather.

Man, I am so tired of reading stuff like this:

“The coaches really want to see us succeed, and they’re always available for us,” said junior outside linebacker Jordan Jenkins, who had Grantham as a position coach the past two years. “They’re just going the extra mile compared to last year. … The coaches and the players we got now, we never really held each other accountable before; we’d let some people slide. If somebody’s acting up, not doing something right, we get onto them. On and off the field, you’ve got guys looking out for each other and always holding everybody accountable.”

I’m glad they’re buying in to what the new coaches are selling, but, still, what do you figure the over/under on the number of posts I’ve written at GTP on the subject of accountability is?

18 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

Mark Richt has lost control over drankin’.

Let’s face it, the SEC is getting wasted country.  Everybody’s doing it.

(Texas A&M quarterback Kenny) Hill, who will be a sophomore this season and is competing for the starting quarterback job, was arrested just before 3 a.m. on a public intoxication charge, according to the Bryan-College Station Eagle.

Texas A&M athletic department spokesman Alan Cannon confirmed that Hill is “suspended indefinitely from all athletic activities per athletics department policy.”

According to the Eagle, which obtained the police reports, Hill was arrested at Chimy’s, a College Station restaurant and bar, after being found passed out in front of the establishment. He later posted bail and was released.

His fate is yet to be determined.

Whether or not Hill will be suspended for any playing time in the fall remains to be seen. For now, Hill will be kept out of all athletic activities according to Texas A&M policy…

So, he’ll miss a little spring ball, but his role in the fall will be determined by how much his coach needs him on the field, as opposed to some sort of Michael Adams’ mandate.  Level playing field?  We don’t need no stinkin’ level playing field.

I doubt we’ll ever see his like at Auburn, in other words.

12 Comments

Filed under Crime and Punishment, SEC Football

“It’s good for the future now, but you can’t overturn what happened.”

If “a day late and a dollar short” is a way of making peace, then Georgia’s defense has made peace with the NCAA’s revision to the targeting rule.

“When they made that correction, I was like this was a couple of months too late,” outside linebacker Jordan Jenkins said. “The fact they didn’t think of that when they first put the rule out, I feel like that’s their apology and that’s a weak apology to us with that rule.”

They did think of it, Jordan.  They just thought the officials’ fee fees were more important than fair treatment on the field was.  As far as a weak apology goes, better late than never.

My only caveat would be to wait and see how the officials react to the change.  I suspect we’re about to see a lot more plays with multiple penalties called.

9 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, The NCAA

I hope it’s nothing personal.

Oh, noes!  Chris Conley is one of them.

If not a union supporter, at least a union sympathizer.  And a thoughtful one, at that.  (No surprise there.)

Georgia senior receiver Chris Conley is a student representative to the NCAA, so he’s well-educated on the issue. Given his position, Conley has tried to provide more of an informational role to his teammates, explaining the situation and possible ramifications.

“There’s a lot of misunderstanding from people,” Conley said. “It’s not just a money issue. And I think that’s what the people on the outside think: ‘Aw athletes are just trying to get paid, they need to calm down with this. It’s an issue that applies to so many other things with student athletes: Time constraints, health, concussions, a bunch of stuff.”

Player injuries are another matter that a union could help.

“I know they do a great job of it here (at Georgia), but there’s no mandate for it across the board with institutions, and how they deal with injuries, when players leave, and ailments that they have,” Conley said. “That’s a big issue that’s on the table. Quite frankly student-athletes want to know that they’re going to be taken care of after they’ve committed so much to a university. They think a university or the NCAA should look after their interests.”

Conley emphasized that he doesn’t know if a union is the right mechanism to fight for student-athletes’ rights. But he called it a “step forward.”

All the players that have spoken out about this – Conley, Ramik Wilson, Jordan Jenkins and Amarlo Herrera are quoted in the article – I’m curious about something.  Those of you who are vehemently opposed to what Seth refers to as “student-athlete rights”, will this sort of talk color your perception of these players?  Will you find it harder to root for them because you know the stance they’ve taken?

This shouldn’t be taken as mockery.  I’ve read a number of comments that players getting paid means the end of fans’ love of the game.  Isn’t this kind of a midway point to that?

54 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Look For The Union Label