Daily Archives: August 4, 2016

“It was tried and it’s the law.”

This is why I love the law:  the NCAA lost the O’Bannon case in front of U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken and has appealed her decision to the Supreme Court, but meanwhile is invoking O’Bannon as a shield against Jeffrey Kessler in his antitrust suit… and finding that Judge Wilken is sympathetic to its defense.

What a country, eh?

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Filed under See You In Court, The NCAA

“This is unnecessary, and I think it’s unfair.”

Kevin Scarbinsky wades into the Maurice Smith affair and finds — surprise! — it’s not so clear cut as to how badly Alabama has behaved.

The latest development was a contentious meeting Tuesday between Smith, his parents and Alabama coach Nick Saban. Smith’s mother, Samyra, described it to me as “a knock-down drag-out.”

Samyra Smith said she believes Saban and Alabama are doing their best to force her son to stay and play one more season for the Crimson Tide, even though the idea of forcing a disgruntled player to stick around seems counterproductive. Smith will not report for fall camp Thursday, his mom said, and will not play for Alabama this season.

She said Saban told the family Tuesday he had “penciled in” her son as a starter. She said her son responded to the coach, “Pencils have erasers.”

Alabama declined an opportunity to comment Wednesday, but it’s clear the school disagrees with Samyra Smith’s contention that it’s been stalling to keep her son on the roster.

One example: Alabama already had renewed Smith’s scholarship for the upcoming year, and there’s no stated NCAA process to rescind such a renewal. But Alabama did work with the SEC and the NCAA to rescind the renewal, which was necessary to allow Smith to meet the transfer requirements. That process was finalized within the last week, which helps open the door for Smith to transfer to any school outside the SEC.

I don’t want to say this is about two egos, because I honestly don’t think Saban operates that way.  But it’s clearly devolved into a test of wills, which is something I doubt Nick Saban is used to experiencing with one of his players.

At its most basic level, transfer policy is about coach control.  That’s what we’re seeing here.  With this showdown, Saban is managing his roster the way Saban’s always managed his roster.  Smith has some leverage as a graduate, but only so much.  (And time is working against him, if coming to Georgia is his goal.)

So while I don’t think this is anything personal on Saban’s part, it’s clear that someone on Alabama’s staff has taken the coach’s hunkering down on Smith’s transfer as a green light to behave like a complete ass.  The irony is, presuming the media heat continues to be dialed up, that this may wind up being the lever that sets Smith free to pursue the move of his preference.  And if that happens, I’d hate to be the guy responsible for that.

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Filed under Nick Saban Rules

There’s preseason happy talk and then there are numbers.

I guess the strength and conditioning coaches have been busy this summer.

Fifty-nine players weigh more than they did since the last updated roster, including 21 by double digits after an offseason under new coach Scott Sinclair and staff.

The biggest gainers in listed weight were freshman quarterback Jacob Eason and offensive tackle/tight end Aulden Bynum each up 24 pounds. Eason, nicknamed “Skinny”, is now listed at 6-foot-5 and 235 pounds. Bynum goes 6-5 and 292.

Quarterback Greyson Lambert also is up 14 pounds to 6-5 and 234 pounds. Brice Ramsey is up 3 to 6–3 and 210.

Running back Nick Chubb is up eight pounds to 228.

Sam Pittman wants his offensive line to be supersized: Dyshon Sims is up 16 pounds to 309 and Brandon Kublanow up 11 to 293 and 6-6 Sam Madden up 12 to 334.

“Big Country” Ben Cleveland isn’t quite as big. The 6-foot-6 freshman dropped four pounds to 341. Freshman Solomon Kindley was listed at 370 entering but he’s now at 336.

The defensive line also has more beef.

DaQuan Hawkins is up 18 to 320 and Michael Barnett 16 to 292.

Outside linebacker Chuks Amaechi now is 250, up 20 pounds.

Inside linebacker Natrez Patrick drew praise for the shape he is in from Kirby Smart. He’s down 10 pounds to 238. Freshman defensive lineman Michail Carter (if this isn’t a misprint) had the biggest drop in weight down 24 to 293.

By the way, muscular Elijah Holyfield, the freshman running back, is listed at 5-11, 215, up six pounds.

Of course, we’ve seen weight changes in summers before.  What we don’t know until we see them play is to what end they’ve been made.

It’s also worth remembering that while the team will be on its third offensive coordinator in three years, the changeover in S&C has almost kept pace, as I believe this marks the third head strength coach in four seasons.  Is one offseason enough for a complete remake of what went before?  You got me.

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Filed under Georgia Football, The Body Is A Temple

Who wants back in to the Fabris Pool?

Just wanted to gauge the readership’s interest in another season of pick ’em.  I’ll set things up for the 2016 season if you guys want to play.  Just let me know in the comments.

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Filed under GTP Stuff