Daily Archives: April 10, 2018

Today, in competitive balance

For those of you concerned about how above-board player compensation would favor the programs with resources…

… how much difference would it really make from the current state of affairs?

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Filed under The NCAA

Man, what did you expect?

I can’t say I’m particularly sympathetic to Ole Miss’ current plight, but that doesn’t mean I’m surprised by this news, either.

Ole Miss is objecting to Shea Patterson’s assessment of the conditions within the program that the quarterback claims caused him to transfer from the school amid an NCAA scandal, his attorney tells CBS Sports.

The objection recently sent to the NCAA could impact Patterson’s ongoing transfer waiver appeal as he is looking to immediately become eligible to play for Michigan in 2018. The objection is part of a response delivered to the NCAA last month, according to attorney Thomas Mars.

Patterson is seeking a waiver of the NCAA’s traditional year-in-residence rule for transfers before becoming eligible. The approval of such a waiver would presumably have a significant impact on the Wolverines’ 2018 season.

“Whoever wrote that response for Ole Miss either wasn’t paying attention last year or had a case of selective amnesia,” Mars said.

Or perhaps — just perhaps — there’s another reason.

Ole Miss has issues with how its former quarterback portrayed his reasons for transferring after the Rebels were put on NCAA probation late last year, sources said.

CBS Sports reported in February that Patterson and five other former teammates feel they were misled on the scope of that NCAA investigation by former coach Hugh Freeze.

Electronic communications obtained by CBS Sports supporting their cases were included by those players in their appeals.

Another person working closely with Patterson’s appeal said misleading statements made by Freeze about the scope of the NCAA investigation were “a flat-out, deliberate lie.”

Does Mars really think the school was just going to shrug its shoulders and say “our bad”?  Patterson may still wind up gaining his eligibility in time for the 2018 season, but to think Ole Miss was going to roll over and accept Mars’ portrayal of its recruiting is its own version of not paying attention.  That’s not about what’s already happened; it’s about the here and now on the recruiting trail.

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Filed under Freeze!, Recruiting

Today, in asking for a friend

John Adams is just brainstorming here, but… well, I’ll let you ponder where this came from.

… In fact, I would be in favor of increasing UT’s football support staff even further. And I have an idea of how to do it at no additional cost.

My proposal: all athletic department employees except coaches should be required to devote at least five hours of their work week to football.

Tennessee’s 2017 football press guide lists 32 senior athletic staff members. If they each gave five hours a week to football, that’s 160 more hours of manpower. And that’s just the senior staff members.

Those 160 hours could be devoted to recruiting, which is basically all about making high school seniors feel important. Think “handwritten notes.”

But the head of Tennessee’s athletic department could do more than write notes.

I thought about that when I saw a photo taken by News Sentinel photographer Caitie McMekin. The photo, taken at a Tennessee football practice, shows athletic director Phillip Fulmer looking like a football coach, which he used to be.

Since Fulmer is a regular visitor to practice, new coach Jeremy Pruitt should take advantage of his presence.

Fulmer once was one of the best offensive line coaches in the SEC. And last season, Tennessee had one of the worst offensive lines in the SEC.

I realize Fulmer wouldn’t be allowed to instruct players during practice. But he could observe. He could study video. And then, he could pass along suggestions to Pruitt and offensive line coach Will Friend.

If you think that Fulmer has more important things to do as athletic director, you haven’t been paying attention. There’s nothing more important than fixing UT’s football program.

That’s why chancellor Beverly Davenport fired athletic director John Currie and replaced him with Fulmer in December when the Vols were trying to find a new football coach. Fulmer found her a coach.

That’s just the beginning, though. Now, he needs to help that coach anyway he can.

Sure, he could spend his time making the department more fiscally responsible. For example, is it really necessary for the softball team to take trips to Arizona, California and Hawaii in the same season? And what’s the point of the baseball program traveling out of state before it begins SEC play?

But is fiscal responsibility really that important when you’re raking in the big bucks like Tennessee?

Answer: Not nearly as important as fixing the offensive line.

No doubt Jeremy Pruitt is simply thrilled by this.  I almost expect that Fulmer thoughtfully left a copy of the paper outside his office door.

Every head coach is under pressure to win.  Pruitt needs to win just to get Fulmer out of the coaches’ room.

**************************************************************************

UPDATE:  Holy crap, another media suggestion?

Would Fulmer be willing to coach if the situation called for it? Yes.

The man is working this.  Hard.

I can’t wait to hear the first question about this at a Pruitt presser.

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Filed under Because Nothing Sucks Like A Big Orange, The Glass is Half Fulmer