Daily Archives: June 3, 2016

It’s not Uncle Verne’s job to love a corpse.

Verne Lundquist has the perfect response to those who complain about broadcasters being biased in favor of certain schools.

“At CBS, we want Georgia to succeed. We need them to succeed like we need Florida to succeed, Tennessee; we need some battles in the East that we really haven’t had.”


Filed under SEC Football

Eh, what’s one more game?

Behold, college football’s latest dumb idea.

Are you finished?  Allow Bill Connelly to retort.

This is like settling it on the field times infinity, right?  Or, it could just be about the money.

Yeah, I think I’ll go with the money here.  I’d say that I hope the Big 12’s first championship game results in the conference being knocked out of the four-team playoff, but all that will lead to are calls to expand to eight.

Maybe they can arrange to broadcast the game on the Longhorn Network.


Filed under Big 12 Football, General Idiocy

“Awareness and comfort are two different things.”

Greg Sankey informs Scott Stricklin that he must have been misinformed.

“It’s interesting to hear that, and to read that, and to be asked that question, because I’m quite protective of that communication,” Sankey said. “I saw the word ‘comfortable.’ I would not express comfort with a situation like that. It is difficult. We are the conference wrestling with these issues, and obviously in a public way. And certainly no one in the commissioner’s office, in my office, would communicate comfort with that situation. Yet the reality is those institutional decisions are still left at that level.”

If that’s not exactly “drop dead, MSU”, it’s at least “leave me out of this shit, boys.”


Filed under SEC Football

That depends upon what your definition of “saw” is.

This is mindboggling.

A question during News 10’s interview with former Baylor Chancellor and President Ken Starr about a rape victim’s email that was sent to his office and to several other officials led to an awkward interruption during which a well-known crisis management specialist convinced Starr to change his response.

The email, with a subject line that read, “I was raped at Baylor”, was sent by a former student who says she was raped while attending the school in 2010.

The woman, who has not been identified, told ESPN’s “Outside the Lines” Wednesday morning that she did not believe Starr’s call for transparency was genuine because he never responded to her email.

KWTX anchor Julie Hays asked Starr if he had seen it, he first responded “I honestly may have. I’m not denying that I saw it.”

After he answered, Merrie Spaeth, whom Starr had introduced as a family friend, approached KWTX News Director, Mikel Lauber, who was positioned behind the camera during the interview.

Lauber says Spaeth asked him to promise to not use that portion of the interview.

When he said no, Spaeth interrupted the interview, telling Starr as the camera continued to roll that she needed to talk to him.

When Hays tried to ask another question, Spaeth interrupted and insisted that she needed to talk to Starr.

The two then left the room.

Several minutes later they returned, and Spaeth told Hays to ask the question again, saying that she wanted to make sure the answer didn’t end up “mis-edited.”

After a few minutes out of the room, the two returned.

When Hays asked again about the email, Starr responded, “I’m honestly going to say, I have no recollection of that.”

He then turned to Spaeth and asked, “Is that OK?”

Spaeth replied, “Don’t look at me, look at her,” referring to Hays.

He then turned back to Hays who asked the question a third time.

Starr responded, “I honestly have no recollection of seeing such an email and I believe that I would remember seeing such an email. The president of the University gets lots of emails. I don’t even see a lot of the emails that come into the office of the President. I have no recollection of it. None.”

Jeebus.  They’re gonna have to come up with a whole new Rule of Holes for Kenneth Starr.

The “family friend” is, as I’ve noted before, the same media genius who advised Craig James.  Any advice she’s giving Starr beyond “I don’t think you should open your mouth in public” is a waste of money, assuming she’s charging him anything.  And if she isn’t, you know what they say about what free advice is worth.

Make sure to watch the clip at the linked article.  It’s even more mindbogglingly incomprehensible than simply reading the transcript.


Filed under General Idiocy, It's All Just Made Up And Flagellant

When it comes to targeting, can you ever have enough eyeballs?

Seth Emerson has a good run down on the thinking behind the SEC’s shiny new collaborative replay review set up.

A command center in Birmingham, where the SEC offices are located, will be manned by three replay officials. They will work in tandem with the replay official on site at each SEC home game.

The ultimate, final decision still belongs to the main replay official.

“But if you’re going against the three guys in the command center, you better be able to bet your career that you’re right,” SEC coordinator of officials Steve Shaw said, smiling.

I get that the conference remains concerned about targeting and worries that some calls are being missed.  It’s a good thing about which to be vigilant.  Buuuuttt… (and you knew one was coming, right?) I can’t help but wonder if another level of buck passing is inevitable.

Remember, the way the conference defended the initial version of the targeting rule, with its automatic 15-yard penalty regardless of whether the call on the field stood on review, was to let the officials on the field know they had their backs.  Flags needed to fly, err on the side of caution, etc.  The penalty call is no longer enforceable if targeting is waved off by the replay official on site, so at some point, cooler heads weighed in and prevailed on what led to certain travesties.

Now the replay official on site has someone looking over his shoulder.  And ultimate, final decision or not, if you’re that guy, do you really want to find out if Steve Shaw was kidding?

If they’re still missing targeting calls after this, do they introduce another level of review above the conference command office?  I mean, why not?  Either that, or crowd source it…


Filed under SEC Football

“All of us believe in second chances.”

Good Lord, this is arrogant stuff, especially coming from a school that had an SEC transfer rule named after Saban’s last mistake.

“All coaches think they could save everybody,” Battle said in Destin. “Nick has had great success in taking players in his history. Some of them have really done well. And some haven’t. But probably more than not, he has been able to change behavior. I think that’s part of his DNA.”

Sorry, but the minute you believe your coach’s ability to save kids is part of his DNA is the minute you guarantee you’re going to enroll someone who can’t be saved.  Which means somebody else is going to pay a price for your delusion.


Filed under Nick Saban Rules

The redemption of Richt

Boy, in the wake of the debacles at Baylor and Mississippi State. you could see this take coming a mile away.

During a wide-ranging interview Thursday morning in his office at the University of Miami, it only seemed natural to steer new coach Mark Richt toward the topic of player discipline in light of what happened in the past week at Baylor.

Richt, after all, was central to one of the great Internet memes in the history of the SEC when a raft of key football players at Georgia were suspended for the 2012 opener. Suddenly, “Mark Richt has lost control” became a thing both within the Georgia fan base and outside of it, where it evolved into a shorthand for pretty much any deficiency in the program.

But the irony of “Mark Richt has lost control” as a concept is that Georgia’s annual list of player dismissals and suspensions meant he actually had quite a bit of control. And regardless of whether it was a star player or an expendable backup, Georgia players were going to face discipline for offseason infractions — usually to a greater degree than their counterparts at other SEC schools.

There were even occasions players dismissed from Georgia resurfaced at other SEC schools and, in the case of former Auburn quarterback Nick Marshall, had a direct hand in putting Richt a little closer to the hot seat.

Yet so warped is the mindset of the college football fan that Richt’s greatest virtue — his willingness to do the right thing for the program, even if it was against his self-interest as a coach trying to keep his job — became something people beat him over the head with time and time again.

“People” includes his old fan base.  Which is perhaps noteworthy in that those Georgia fans aren’t exactly being let off the hook in this piece.

But here’s the rub: Richt never won a national title at Georgia. And though it’s impossible to pinpoint one thing that could have gotten him over the hump, Georgia fans will forever be torn over their devotion to the so-called “Georgia Way” and their burning desire to be a little more like Alabama.

If the roaring, full house at Georgia’s spring game was any indication, the pendulum in Athens has swung to the latter. Kirby Smart isn’t going to get everything he wants — Georgia’s stricter-than-industry-standard drug policy is staying intact for now, anyway — but little by little the Sabanization of the Bulldogs is taking hold.

We’ll soon find out whether that means more Saban-style discipline and willingness to give players as many chances as they need if they’re good enough to deliver titles, but the hunch here is it will. And Georgia fans will cheer just as loudly for that as they did puffing out their chests about how Richt did it the “right way.”

Eh, I think Wolken’s ignored one group – the folks who will insist that Georgia is getting the best of both Richt’s ethics and Saban’s management.  They’re the ones who decided to make the change at head coach, after all.  Other than that, it’s likely to turn out to be a fair cop.


Filed under Georgia Football