Daily Archives: August 28, 2017

This ought to be good.

Be still, my heart.

Saturday’s game will be broadcast on ESPN. Mike Patrick and Tommy Tuberville will have the call.

Between Patrick wondering what Brittney Spears is doing with her life and the potential for Tubs to give Kirby coaching advice on how to succeed in the SEC, this has all the earmarks of an instant classic.



Filed under ESPN Is The Devil, Georgia Football

Today, in amateurism

The NCAA on crowdfunding:  no for student-athletes; yes for the buildings they play in.


Filed under The NCAA

Wingin’ it.

When it comes to the right time to play Jake Fromm this season, it’s kind of like Justice Stewart on pornography:  the coaches will know it when they see it.

Personally speaking, if Fromm gets to strut his stuff in four or five blowout wins, I’m down with that.


Filed under Georgia Football

Ken Blankenship is on pins and needles.

Still no decision on who Georgia’s starting kicker will be.


Filed under Georgia Football

The biggest question for Saturday night…

… isn’t what you think.

It’s whether Riley Ridley and Elijah Holyfield, who were both arrested for marijuana possession earlier this year, suit up or are suspended.

If they play, it’s the clearest indication yet there’s a new sheriff in town when it comes to Georgia’s drug policy.  If that happens, I wonder if there’s anyone in the administration or on the Board of Regents who will have the guts to step up and publicly defend the change.


Filed under Georgia Football

Do you believe in miracles?

Despite breaking a bone in his foot that required surgery, Malkom Parrish hasn’t been ruled out for the Appalachian State game by his head coach.

If Parrish does play in the opener, that’s just more proof that Ron Courson is a wizard.


Filed under Georgia Football, The Body Is A Temple

You’re not paranoid if you think Appy State is really out to get you.

Jeez, guys.  Really?

I hope they at least leave on the jersey numbers Saturday night.


Filed under Georgia Football

“By the end of our time together, I wanted to physically beat his ass.”

You only get one guess as to which current head coach the comment in the header refers.


Filed under Don't Mess With Lane Kiffin

Not your regular SEC preseason predictions, 2017 edition

Once more into the breach, dear friends, I go with my stab at what the conference will look like this season.  I freely admit it’s all guesswork, but it’s guesswork based on how the teams looked at the end of last season, adjusted for gains, losses and whatever else the inevitable passage of time may have wrought.

Bullshit, in other words.  But, anyway…

First, a reminder about the format for this, which some of you ought to read carefully before blasting me in the comments for projecting the order of finish for this season.  It’s not like I’ve posted it for four or five years now:

The format for my picks, in case you haven’t tuned into this broadcast before, hasn’t changed.

Rather than give you my predicted records, I’ll list the schools in the order they finished in the conference last year, look at areas of potential improvement and decline and assess in what direction I expect each to go by comparison to 2010.

In other words, pure seat of the pants BS.

Based on that, the teams are listed in the order of their 2016 conference order of finish.  Remember that, before you start freaking out over where a school shows up in this post.

Got that?  Okay, here goes nothin’.


ALABAMA (14-1, 8-0)

  • Pros:  Obscene depth; Nick Saban and The Process; quarterback; receiving corps; secondary; great advanced stats
  • Cons:  Substantial losses on defense to the NFL
  • Outlook:  Did you ever see Groundhog Day?  Nothing changes under Saban.

AUBURN (8-5, 5-3)

  • Pros:  Favorable advanced stats; running back; offensive line; special teams
  • Cons:  New quarterback and new offensive coordinator; raised expectations; losses on the defensive line
  • Outlook: If you believe the Stidham hype, Auburn is going to have a great season. I’m a little skeptical because of the small sample size and because of the change at offensive coordinator.  On the other hand, the Tigers looked better on defense last season than I thought they would under Steele, so I expect the losses they suffered on the d-line won’t affect them too adversely.  That being said, Gus has proven he doesn’t do as well when big things are expected at Auburn.  Add it all up, and it comes to nine wins.

LSU (8-4, 5-3)

  • Pros:  One of the best talent bases in the conference; running backs; offensive line; secondary
  • Cons:  Five road conference games; quarterback; new offensive coordinator; receivers
  • Outlook:  On paper, there’s a lot to like:  talent in many places and two well thought of coordinators, for starters.  So why does it feel like some cracks are starting to show?  Part of it’s probably due to Orgeron’s ceiling as a head coach.  The extra SEC road game doesn’t help, either.  It looks like another eight-win season from here.

TEXAS A&M (8-5, 4-4)

  • Pros:  Coaching stability; special teams
  • Cons:  Secondary; special teams; eight of last nine games on schedule against SEC opponents
  • Outlook:  Sumlin’s looking at more hot seat talk.  The real issue for TAMU is that while he’s a good in-game coach, he’s clearly not as good at talent evaluation and signing as Mike Sherman was.  The Aggies get Alabama and Auburn at home, which can’t hurt, but that last three quarters of the schedule looks like a real grind.  It’s hard to see them notch more wins in 2017 than they did in 2016.

ARKANSAS (7-6, 3-5)

  • Pros:  Coaching stability;  only three ranked teams on schedule; quarterback
  • Cons:  Defensive line; linebackers; receivers; scheme change on defense
  • Outlook:  Is this the SEC’s most meh team?  It’s not that the Hogs are outright bad; it’s just that it’s hard to see much to get excited about.  Seven wins again sounds about right.


  • Pros:  Quarterback
  • Cons:  Special teams; secondary
  • Outlook:  Mullen is an excellent quarterbacks coach and Fitzgerald is his latest success story.  Grantham is an improvement at defensive coordinator; unfortunately he doesn’t have much to work with.  The middle part of the schedule is a weekly grind.  There is also the question of whether the NCAA investigation of Ole Miss winds up ensnaring the Bulldogs, or at least diverting some attention to the season.  This season looks like another fight for bowl eligibility.

OLE MISS (5-7, 2-6)

  • Pros:  Quarterback; offensive line
  • Cons:  Tough road schedule; NCAA investigation; running back; wide receivers; secondary; coaching turnover
  • Outlook:  Man, what a mess.  I figure there’s about a 20% chance of the team rallying with an “us against the world” attitude and about an 80% chance things snowball quickly as the schedule toughens.  The Egg Bowl ought to be fun, though.  Even if the Rebels were bowl-eligible, they wouldn’t be going.



FLORIDA (9-4, 6-2)

  • Pros:  Wide receivers; coaching stability; offensive line; special teams; schedule
  • Cons:  Defensive losses; overall depth; quarterback
  • Outlook:  McElwain is two-for-two in division titles, which is particularly impressive given the personnel flaws on offense he’s had to manage around.  He faces different challenges in 2017, though.  The offense ought to be better on the o-line, at receiver and at running back, while the defense has suffered significant losses at every level.  The schedule helps, but this is a team that could go south in a hurry if injuries mount.  If that can be avoided, the East being weak should keep the Gators in contention.  In that regard, it helps that the two toughest games on the schedule are against non-conference opponents.  (Not to mention the Gators have five home conference games.) I’ll say nine wins for now.

TENNESSEE (9-4, 4-4)

  • Pros:  Running back
  • Cons:  Quarterback; new offensive coordinator
  • Outlook:    Boy, did I whiff on last year’s prediction that Shoop was the best offseason hire in the SEC.  The Vols’ disappointing 2017 season can be blamed on several things, but the defense was a major contributor.  It’s hard to see the losses in the offensive backfield and Barnett being replaced without a hitch.  This season has the feel of a reboot.  Eight wins, if they get some breaks; otherwise, seven seems likely.

GEORGIA (8-5, 4-4)

  • Pros:  Running backs; tight ends; front seven on defense; coaching stability; best talent base in the division
  • Cons: Offensive line; wide receiver; special teams
  • Outlook:  On paper, this is a team that should win at least nine games and the SEC East.  As last year’s Nicholls game indicated, though, Georgia often doesn’t play on paper.  The rising talent base fueled by two excellent recruiting classes should fix the problem areas; the question is how long it takes.  If the offensive line gels early on, the season shapes up quite favorably.  I’ll say nine regular season wins and hope to be pleasantly surprised.

KENTUCKY (7-6, 4-4)

  • Pros:  Linebackers; special teams; coaching stability; favorable cross-division schedule
  • Cons:  Wide receivers; quarterback
  • Outlook:  There’s a lot of “if this team wore Florida’s or Georgia’s uniforms, they’d be taken as a serious division contender” talk for the Wildcats.  But they don’t, and that’s because it’s hard for a perennial doormat to take that next big step.  That being said, there is a fair amount to like about UK, as Stoops has done a good job upgrading the talent base.  I don’t think the ‘Cats slide and may actually add a win to last year’s total.

VANDERBILT (6-7, 3-5)

  • Pros:  Coaching stability; Ralph Webb
  • Cons:  Offensive line; defensive line; five ranked teams on the schedule
  • Outlook:  Derek Mason knows how to coach defense.  That’s good, because losing Zach Cunningham hurts.  Vandy starts at a talent disadvantage against the rest of the conference and this year’s schedule doesn’t help.  If the ‘Dores make it back to six wins, Mason’s done a good job.


  • Pros:  Quarterback; wide receiver; tight end; coaching stability
  • Cons:  Offensive line; running back; special teams
  • Outlook: Although the talent situation is less dire than Spurrier left it, there are still a lot of holes on the roster.  Muschamp did a respectable job managing last year’s team to bowl eligibility.  A respectable job this year might mean another win.

MISSOURI (4-8, 2-6)

  • Pros:  Receivers; offensive line; quarterback; soft schedule
  • Cons:  Kicking game; linebackers; defensive line; secondary
  • Outlook:  The offense was okay last year.  The defense was abysmal.  The offense will probably be better with another year under its belt.  If the defense shows even modest improvement, the Tigers should be bowl eligible, especially with that non-conference schedule.  It’ll be close, but I think they’ll get to six wins.


Filed under SEC Football

Musical palate cleanser, blues is pain edition

I had the pleasure of seeing 81-year old Buddy Guy in concert Friday night.  It’s easy to toss the word legendary out there, but listening to him talk about the blues greats he played with, it’s a legitimate description for him.  He’s still got his guitar chops, too.

Although he didn’t play this, it’s my favorite song of his.  From his A Man and the Blues album, it’s an awesome cover of Mercy Dee Walton’s “One Room Country Shack”.

And, as a bonus, here’s a live version from the late ’70s.


Filed under Uncategorized