Daily Archives: June 11, 2018

“The NCAA is corrupt, we know that.”

This ought to be a fun project that flies under the radar.

Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James is co-producing an HBO Sports documentary on “the exploitative world of high-revenue college sports,” the network announced Monday afternoon.

The film, titled “STUDENT ATHLETE,” will debut Oct. 2 at 10 p.m. ET on HBO, according to a press release. James is listed as an executive producer for the film in association with SpringHill Entertainment, the production company that he founded with longtime friend and business manager Maverick Carter.

At least as long as they don’t film something like a kid kneeling during the National Anthem, anyway.



Filed under The NCAA

85 is just a number.

Another member of the 2018 class heads to juco.  Interesting academic issue for him.

Joseph was homeschooled early in his high school career and also had to transfer several times. Evans said that he will definitely spend at least the 2018 season at the junior college level.

A reminder to some of you who believe faulty academics are an indication of a character problem that life is not always black and white…


Filed under Georgia Football

We’re gonna need a bigger bowl.

I’m shocked, shocked to discover this is going on in your casino, sir.

Based on recommendations by the NCAA’s Competition Committee, there are expected to be three new bowl games added for the 2020 season, sources said.

In 2020, a record 43 bowls (including the College Football Playoff title game) would be held, meaning a record 65 percent of the 130 FBS schools (84 teams) will play in a bowl game…

* The three new bowls? Chicago and Myrtle Beach are near locks to host two of the new bowl games.

The Chicago bowl, to be played at Wrigley Field, will feature the Big Ten against the ACC, sources said. To add the Chicago bowl in 2020, the Big Ten is expected to end its affiliation with the San Francisco Bowl (formerly Foster Farms Bowl) after 2019.

Myrtle Beach and ESPN officials have had ongoing discussions about starting this bowl game, sources said. The most likely conferences affiliated with Myrtle Beach could be Conference USA, the Sun Belt or the Mid-American. If the Sun Belt is involved, look for the league to cut ties in 2020 with either Arizona, Dollar General, Camellia or Cure, all part of the Sun Belt’s current bowl lineup.

The third new bowl? This isn’t as clear cut. Arizona State has shown interest in adding a bowl in Tempe. And a number of cities/communities have expressed interest in the past including Charleston, S.C., and Greenville, N.C. The only certainty is before a bowl can be created, it must have a contract with two conferences and/or BYU/Army.

Gotta keep ESPN happy, boys.  And they wouldn’t want the product if they didn’t think we’d watch it.


Filed under College Football

What Jim Delany hath wrought.

While this article may be a sad read, when you bring in a school for the sole purpose of making your conference broadcast product more attractive to cable companies, it shouldn’t be a surprising one.

This is the kind of crap I beat on when I post about college football ignoring its traditional strengths in its chase for the almighty dollar.  Well played, Jimbo.


Filed under Big Ten Football

The next big thing?

Every so often, I lock on to a signee who for some reason convinces me he’s eventually going to blow up and have a huge Georgia career.  I’m not always right about that, but the last time I got that feeling, it was over Roquan Smith.  It took him a season to get going, but once he did, well… even at Georgia, All-Americans don’t exactly grow on trees.

I confess that I’m getting the same feeling about a member of the 2018 class.

CB Tyson Campbell

Campbell was one of the top overall recruits in a star-studded Georgia class. As the nation’s second-ranked cornerback out of high school, it could be hard to keep him off the field if he lives up to his potential throughout preseason practice. Head coach Kirby Smart was highly complimentary of Campbell at his National Signing Day news conference. Smart loves the 6-foot-2 cornerback’s blend of size and speed.

“The guy can fly, and he’s really competitive,” Smart said. “Obviously, we know what the stature and the size bring, but more important than that on Tyson Campbell is his intangibles. There are some other good DBs that we’re able to bring in. We’re really excited about the DBs as a whole. It’s an area that we felt like we could improve our team, and we were able to do it through recruiting.”

Kirby’s not the only one enamored with Campbell’s blend of size and speed.  His high school tape is impressive, too.

His timing is also good.  With several departures in the secondary, there’s a real opportunity to impact the two deep by the time the season rolls around.  I don’t know that Campbell will be ready after a month’s practice to grab a starting spot in the secondary, but barring injury, I will be surprised if he doesn’t get some serious playing time in the opener.  I’m looking forward to seeing what he’s got.


Filed under Georgia Football

Not happy

I’ve taken it as a given that the NCAA and its member schools lobby Congress for an antitrust exemption and will necessarily ratchet up the effort if the efforts of Kessler and others result in an unfavorable court ruling regarding amateurism.  While my opinion on that hasn’t changed, I’m starting to question how successful that effort will be.  It’s one thing to assume that Congress favors the wealthy and powerful; it’s another to ignore what seem to be several trends that make the NCAA’s cause a harder sell than it used to be(h/t)

Television revenues and corporate sponsorship are not taxed

In the words of Mike McIntire who writes extensively on the subject for The New York Times, “…college sports remain largely tax exempt, the beneficiary of a public subsidy that is increasingly difficult to defend.” This will only be more “difficult to defend” in the future.

Scholarships not being taxed

College sports scholarships are easily worth six figures and more thanks to the “extraordinary benefits.” These are not taxed, which could be around $40,000.00 if the IRS and state authorities came in heavy. Expect that to happen if players are paid or allowed to profit from images or sponsorships. With the average college student in the United States graduating nearly $40,000.00 in debt with much of that going to fees to support athletics, it is not difficult to imagine support for scholarship athletes to be taxed, especially if they start receiving salaries.

There are still plenty of tax breaks for ticket purchases, facilities construction, and related areas. These are always targets in tax reforms. It was that was last year and it will be in the future.

Salaries for administrators in non-profits

As little support there would be for athletic scholarships to not be taxed, there is even less for administrators at non-profits such as colleges and conferences having seven and eight-figure compensation packages. In a country that has seen massive change at the national level in elections in 2006, 2008, 2010, 2014, and 2016, do not expect much support to protect massive pay for higher-ups at non-profits.

Student loans to pay for athletic fees

At power five schools, more than $2 million in student fees goes to the athletics department, well over $100 million annually. The average college student graduates nearly $40,000.00 in debt. Obviously, much of that money borrowed that is subsidized by the American taxpayer goes to support college sports. Since attendance at colleges sporting events is falling, its tough to argue that every student is a fan. But all pay these fees at the schools that charge for it, and the average one graduates nearly $40,000.00 in debt.

For all the faux hand wringing over student-athletes suddenly faced with tax consequences over their compensation, it’s worth remembering that there are much bigger pots of money out there that can generate public outrage.  Throw in current public concerns about the cost of college and it gets harder to see how schools can waltz into a Congressional hearing and expect tons of sympathy from legislators who will have plenty of targets over which to grandstand.  That, in turn, begs the question of what sort of price the schools and the NCAA are willing to pay for the exemption.  That’s not to say it won’t be a price that ultimately won’t be paid.  You get the feeling it’ll be more expensive than Jim Delany and his buddies probably thought it would be at one time, though.


Filed under Political Wankery, The NCAA

Number four, with a bullet

Some random dude on Dawgs247 posts about the toughest defenses Florida will face this season, and the team ranked sixth nationally last season in total defense ranks fourth on the totem pole.

Georgia lost a lot to the NFL on the defensive side of the ball, but they are talented. The best unit on defense, at least early in the year, should be the defensive line with starters Jonathan Ledbetter (SR) and Tyler Clark (JR) returning from a year ago. Julian Rochester (JR) in the middle is another with experience. Like the Noles, the Bulldogs will have to replace all four starting linebackers, and that was a very talented group past year for the Bulldogs. But, recruiting has been great and familiar names like Walter Grant (SO), Natrez Patrick (SR), Monty Rice (SO), and D’Andre Walker (SR) are the guys that have to step in and fill the roles now with high profile newly signed players waiting in the wings. Corner Deandre Baker (SR) and safety J.R. Reed (JR) are talented returning starters in the back end, but the other spots are going to be occupied by players with very little experience. Tyrique McGhee (JR) may get the nod at the other corner spot while super talented safety Richard LeCounte (SO) will have to grow up pretty quick from the limited experience he garnered a year ago.

Bottom Line: If this defense is going to be the fourth best defense or better that the Gators face in 2018, they are going to have to rely on a lot of the young guys they have recruited over the last two years that haven’t seen the field much if any so far. But, that is the kind of talent they have recruited and that is expected at this point. The Bulldog defense should take some lumps early on, and getting better will rely on those young guys panning out.

I could pick a few holes in his analysis, but suffice to say that if this defense is only the fourth-best the Gators face in 2018, it’s going to be a long season for Florida’s offense.


Filed under Gators Gators, Georgia Football

Another Chantastic year ahead

Pete Fiutak sets the table for Georgia Tech:

Head coach Paul Johnson is going into his 11th year with the Yellow Jackets, with four division titles and an ACC championship. But the team is 17-19 with two losing seasons in the last three since taking out Mississippi State in the 2015 Orange Bowl. That’s as many losing campaigns as Johnson had in his previous 18 seasons as a head man.

He’s a brilliant, legendary coach who’ll end up in the College Football Hall of Fame, but even for him, a third losing season in four years is a problem.

And here’s where Georgia Tech will be an interesting case study once the season is over.

Outside of the elite teams coming into the season, find anyone else who might have a shot at doing something positive with a slate that includes road games at Georgia, Virginia Tech, Louisville, Pitt and USF, and home games against Clemson and Miami. Throw in dates against Duke and Virginia – who went bowling last year – and a road trip to North Carolina, and good luck.

And why does Georgia Tech have that chance to survive and even thrive against this slate?

Before we get to his answer, realize that somehow Johnson, in the midst of his worse run ever as a head coach, somehow managed to snag a contract extension.  Hmm… maybe the guy is a genius.  But I digress.

So, Pete, how does that chance go?

The good news is that Georgia Tech gets Clemson in Atlanta. The bad news is that it has to play Clemson.

Going to Pitt, USF, Louisville, Virginia Tech, and then closing it all up with Georgia would be the end of most teams before the season even started. And then, throw in home dates against Miami along with Clemson, and the season is all about having a little fun and killing some time.

But with the option attack, and the likely improvements on defense, there will be an upset or three – like the win over Virginia Tech last year – and without the clunkers like there were against Virginia and Duke.

Oh it’ll be a struggle to get to bowl eligibility, but it’ll happen.

Seven wins.  Maybe he’ll get another extension.


Filed under Georgia Tech Football