Daily Archives: May 12, 2016

Ole Miss’ faucet has an annoying drip.

That text message conversation that saw the light of day at the NFL draft?  Ole Miss admits it’s real and it’s spectacular.

Ole Miss officials have determined that a text message conversation published to Miami Dolphins rookie Laremy Tunsil’s Instagram account during the NFL draft did happen last year, sources told ESPN’s Outside the Lines, but the school is still looking into whether the messages were altered before they were published.

Looking into?  The parties involved don’t know if they were altered?  Maybe it’s just me, but if I were an assistant athletic director, I’m pretty sure I’d remember a conversation I had with a player who was asking for money – especially one who was suspended for half a season for taking improper benefits.

The Rebels received an NCAA notice of allegations in late January but have released few details about the investigation. The sources said Ole Miss officials expect to respond to the NCAA later this month.

Better get those loose ends tied up fast, boys.

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17 Comments

Filed under SEC Football, The NCAA

Damn it, Kirby.

Georgia must not allow a satellite camp gap in American Samoa.  Must.  Not.

5 Comments

Filed under Recruiting

“And that the chicks paid him a lot of attention.”

Mark Richt, we hardly knew ‘ye.  At least he wasn’t wearing jorts.

(h/t)

18 Comments

Filed under Stylin'

‘We should be entitled because they’re our kids.’

Here’s an interesting story.

Jamyest Williams sat down with University of Georgia defensive coordinator Mel Tucker and got a first-hand glimpse of how the Bulldogs program is changing.

New coaching staff, new way of doing things, and that was part of Tucker’s sell to Williams — one of the best players in the state of Georgia’s Class of 2017.

“Me and Coach Tucker were watching film when Coach (Mark) Richt was the head coach, we were seeing how they would pursue and then jog through the cone a little bit,” Williams said. “Now they sprint full speed, and that’s what they were missing. Just little things to build that program.”

That would be Georgia, negatively recruiting against itself.  Which isn’t to say I don’t see the point.  You’re hearing things like this regularly from recruits this year:

“It’s a different environment (at Georgia),” Williams said. “I talked to some of the players too and they feel a big difference also.”

I wonder if this is the other thing to keep an ear out for as the season progresses:

Consider Smart in a kind of probationary period. He’s shiny, and his program has a new aura about it, but that only lasts until the games start. Part of that is enough for an early recruiting boon, but we’ve seen that before at other programs. It’s what happens in the fall that determines the longevity of that recruiting success.

Williams, and a lot of other prospects are waiting. They sense a change at Georgia, and want to see what it means on the field.

“I know this year will be a building year, but they have a lot of great commits,” Williams said. “I want to see how the season plays out and evaluate it.”

On the recruiting front, will it be more about wins and losses for Smart, or simply being able to convince recruits that it’s not the same old, same old anymore?

58 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Recruiting

Just a taste

Lon Kruger wants to figure out a way to pay the student-athletes who are superstars.

Oklahoma basketball coach Lon Kruger did some homework before he spoke Tuesday on a Knight Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics panel about allowing college players to be paid. Kruger said he interviewed five business owners in Oklahoma and asked them two questions.

First, if the NCAA allowed players to get endorsement money, would the businesses invest $1,000 in athletes for an hour of their time? The owners told Kruger they absolutely would regardless of the impact on their business.

Second, if the NCAA allowed it, how many athletes would the businesses invest in? The owners told Kruger the high end was 10 and the low end was six. Kruger said he was surprised by that answer.

“The goal is to be fair,” Kruger said. “Maybe we start at 2 percent or 5 percent of the student-athletes and how do we help them find their value given that the majority of student-athletes have a pretty fair deal?”

Hey, it’s a start.  And at least he’s willing to concede to reality.

Kruger, who made $2.85 million this year, said he can understand the arguments made that athletes are exploited or undervalued.

“Certainly there are cases where that is true,” he said. “Universities are making millions of dollars off of sales and tickets, merchandise sales, sponsorship rights. No question there’s a lot of money to be made. It’s a big business. … We’re all after some middle ground where we’re fair to the student-athlete and protecting their opportunity to participate.”

To me, this is an easy place for the NCAA to begin to compromise.  Rights deals don’t cost schools a dime and don’t raise any troubling Title IX complications.  Yes, there is a potential for abuse, but it’s not an impossible barrier to overcome with some thought.

Besides, the current format is so illogical.  How can Todd Gurley’s endorsement be worth nothing one day as a college junior and then worth millions on the very next day when he terminates his college eligibility?  Besides that, has anyone considered the possibility that some of these kids might find it preferable to stay in college rather than leave early for the pros if there was endorsement money rolling in for them?

63 Comments

Filed under It's Just Bidness, The NCAA

Did Georgia overachieve last season?

Well, maybe a little.

… This week, we turn our attention to how the season played out in terms of the Adjusted Pythagorean Record, or APR. For an in-depth look at APR, click here. If you didn’t feel like clicking, here is the Reader’s Digest version. APR looks at how well a team scores and prevents touchdowns. Non-offensive touchdowns, field goals, extra points, and safeties are excluded. The ratio of offensive touchdowns to touchdowns allowed is converted into a winning percentage…

And here are the APR standings sorted by division with conference rank in offensive touchdowns, touchdowns allowed, and APR in parentheses. This includes conference games only with the championship game excluded.

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Finally, SEC teams are sorted by the difference between their actual number of wins and their expected number of wins according to APR.

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Okay, it’s not huge, but it’s closer to an extra win than not.  What it really makes you wonder is how the year might have gone if Richt had committed from the beginning to the grind it out approach he took after the Florida game.

The other interesting part of Matt’s piece is what he devotes to his Florida analysis.  If he’s right, Jim McElwain had better be praying to the football gods that UF avoids regression to the mean on the turnover margin front in 2016.

14 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

Closing the genius gap

I swear – if Paul Johnson didn’t exist, we’d have to invent him.

Paul Johnson is a leader at a school that lives on the cutting edge of science and technology.

In at least one aspect of his job, though, the Georgia Tech coach finds technology to be an unwelcome intrusion…

Johnson has an understandable opposition to a rule that would enable opposing coaches to watch in-game replays of his unorthodox offense.

“I think it takes away coaching,” he said in an interview earlier this year. “That was one of the things I always liked to think I was decent at, was looking out there and seeing what was going on. Now, anybody can do it if they can sit up there and look at the monitor and run it back.”

Buy a laptop and you, too, can be a head football coach, my friends.  Yes, apparently it’s that easy.

If only he could find a recruiting app.

17 Comments

Filed under Georgia Tech Football, Science Marches Onward