December 17, 2015 · 2:41 PM
If you’re wondering what they’ll be saying about the decision to hire Kirby Smart if things don’t click in Athens for him, have no fear. The good football watching citizens of Montana have already been whispering in Stewart Mandel’s ear.
Georgia: Hired Alabama defensive coordinator Kirby Smart. It’s easy to see why Georgia would covet the former Dawgs safety-turned Nick Saban protege. It’s a bit puzzling, though, why AD Greg McGarity put all his chips on a first-time head coach rather than conduct a search befitting a consensus Top 10 job. Smart has all the necessary training. Whether he has the chops to be an SEC head coach long term is unclear. [Emphasis added.]
I dunno. Will “the Dawg ate the search firm’s homework” make for a satisfactory defense to that criticism?
December 17, 2015 · 2:26 PM
Hey, remember when LSU decided to sue John Chavis for his buyout when he left for Texas A&M?
LSU quickly answered Chavis with a suit of its own later Friday in East Baton Rouge Parish, saying that Chavis confirmed in media reports on Jan. 1 that he had been hired by Texas A&M. Chavis’ contract states that he is relieved of the buyout if he leaves during the last 11 months of his contract with the first day of that period being Feb. 1, 2015. So according to Chavis and his lawyer, he beat that by three days. According to LSU, he broke the contract too early and owes the $400,000.
“We expect him to comply,” Alleva told the Baton Rouge Advocate in January. Alleva had no comment Friday.
Stern stuff. Of course, it would help if Chavis had agreed to the terms Alleva expects him to comply with.
It turns out he didn’t.
In filings made Tuesday morning, LSU admits to altering the 2012 contract of Chavis after the coach signed it – one of Chavis’ claims in the on-going lawsuit between the two parties.
“It’s exactly what coach has been saying all along, that the contract was altered after he signed it in 2012,” said Jill Craft, attorney for Chavis. “You can’t alter a contract and try to claim it’s valid and you certainly can’t sue over it. One of the things they did admit was altered was the buyout provision. In some sense, it’s vindication.”
Bob Barton, representing LSU, declined comment.
No kidding. What’s he gonna say – “my client’s sleaziness here is only exceeded by its dumbassery in thinking this was going to stay under wraps”?
December 17, 2015 · 12:40 PM
I was going to do a little smack in response to this comment …
Nick Saban thinks Kirby Smart finishing the season at Alabama will actually benefit him at his new gig in Athens.
Smart was officially announced as Georgia’s head coach last week but will split his time between Athens and Tuscaloosa until Alabama finishes its season. That decision has ruffled feathers but Saban thinks Smart will receive positive attention for his work leading the Crimson Tide’s defense.
“I also think that it will be a tremendous benefit to him,” Saban said. “He’ll get lots of recognition coaching in this game. There will be a lot of people out there watching this game and I’m sure it’ll get mentioned a few times that he’s going to be a head coach of an SEC school, and I know he wants to do a good job because of that.”
… until I looked down the page and saw this:
Saban has personal experience juggling two jobs — he accepted the Michigan State job while still with the Cleveland Browns — and vowed to help Smart in his transition. Saban and Smart are only in the second week of their new situation but Saban thinks everything is going as planned.
“We’re trying to help him manage his time, so that he can do a good job for us and he can still do what he needs to do for them,” Saban said. “So far I think that’s working out okay.”
You know what? Saban most likely is sincere about that, which makes sense if you think about it, as Smart didn’t have to come back to Tuscaloosa. So there’s that. Of course, the proof is in the pudding, so we’ll have to see how things play out over the next couple of months before rendering final judgment.
December 17, 2015 · 12:26 PM
You know how people like to say only 20 colleges make a profit from sports?
I’m thinking that number’s gonna have to be revised in the near future.
Athletic departments that generate at least $100 million in revenue used to be incredibly rare. Only Texas, Ohio State and Florida exceeded $100 million in 2007-08. As recently as 2011-12, just 11 schools comprised the $100 million club.
The infusion of College Football Playoff dollars and increased television money continues to change the landscape of college sports. During 2014-15, 28 athletic departments listed at least $100 million in revenue, according to a CBS Sports analysis of recently released figures reported to the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Postsecondary Education.
Eighteen of the 28 schools at $100 million play in the SEC or Big Ten. Athletic departments in those conferences averaged more than $100 million in revenue, widening the financial gaps between the SEC and Big Ten with everyone else. Ten of the 19 biggest moneymakers last year came from the SEC. Texas reported the most revenue at $179.6 million, followed by Ohio State ($170.9 million) and Alabama ($150.6 million).
There’s a reason all those 1-AA schools keep looking to jump up to D-1. That’s where the money is.
December 17, 2015 · 12:17 PM
Hit this link, and you’ll find a post that lists, in the words of its author, “…what every single one of the 128 FBS teams is ranked first at, and what they’re ranked last at.”
What Georgia’s last at – number of third down conversions – won’t surprise you a bit, but what Georgia ranks first in might. (Hint: it’s also an offensive stat.)
December 17, 2015 · 8:04 AM
Bowl practice kicked off yesterday and the old and new staff commingled.
Check out Jim Chaney’s reaction here:
Is that a “oh, Lord, what have I gotten into here” look, or what?
Not to be outdone, here’s Sam Pittman’s take.
Not exactly your typical happy camper look.
Have at it in the comments.
December 17, 2015 · 7:44 AM
There’s a fun chart in this USA Today piece ranking schools by their cost per victory in 2015 based on coaches’ pay. It’s good to see how South Carolina, Georgia Tech and Auburn got their money’s worth.
December 17, 2015 · 7:38 AM
The word came yesterday that the Ninth Circuit would not revisit the three-judge panel’s ruling from a few months ago that undid Judge Wilken’s monetary remedy. (Not surprising, in that it’s unusual for motions for en banc rehearings to be granted.)
That sets up an interesting scenario, namely, does either side appeal the Ninth Circuit’s ruling to the Supreme Court? Knocking out the financial remedy was a win for the NCAA, but as plaintiff’s counsel notes, the appellate decision left one big thing in place.
O’Bannon attorney Michael Hausfeld said his legal team is evaluating its next options and suggested that could mean new lawsuits that attack other NCAA rules instead of petitioning the Supreme Court.
“We now have an unequivocal determination that the NCAA is a cartel and that as a cartel its conduct violates the antitrust laws with regard to college athletes,” Hausfeld said. “So the next step is what further proceedings could possibly be undertaken with regard to other restraints imposed by the association and the conferences.”
Hausfeld declined to say what NCAA rules he is considering challenging. The Ninth Circuit’s decision not to have a rehearing “focused on a remedy as opposed to the violation,” Hausfeld said. “That doesn’t in any way undercut the fact there is an unimpeachable finding that they violated the antitrust law.”
If it sounds like Hausfeld’s strategy is to sit back and leave the Ninth Circuit precedent out there as a boost to other litigation such as Jeffrey Kessler’s, does the NCAA pocket its winnings and sit back, too? Or does it take the risk of appealing to the Supreme Court in the hope that it can get the entire matter overturned?
December 17, 2015 · 7:26 AM
More shit Nick Saban doesn’t have time for: doing any vetting on hiring Jeremy Pruitt.
“Didn’t interview anybody. Didn’t talk to anybody. Just hired the guy. He worked here for six years. Maybe I should have called some people to find out how good he was, what he could do well and get some kind of recommendation on him, but (I didn’t need to).”
Makes you wonder how much thought he put into signing Jonathan Taylor.
As a side note, even Saban knows what Kirby Smart’s decision to coach ‘Bama in the playoffs means for his new gig.
“It speaks volumes for Kirby, the character he has to want to come back and finish, when it may not be the most advantageous thing for him and his future, to do right by the players and finish for the guys who have done well for him,” Saban said. [Emphasis added.]
December 17, 2015 · 7:17 AM
As career advice from an eight-year old goes, this ain’t bad:
Bryan McClendon has sought a lot of advice from a lot of people — including Mark Richt — since being appointed Georgia’s interim head coach for the TaxSlayer Bowl. But his best tip so far came from his 8-year-old son, Bryan, Jr.
“I told him we were going to do a press conference, and I asked what I should do,” McClendon shared at his first news conference at UGA Wednesday. “He said ‘Just make sure there’s nothing in your nose.’ I said ‘okay, I think I can handle that.’”
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