Daily Archives: May 2, 2019

Dooley Field at Sanford Stadium

It’s official.

University of Georgia President Jere W. Morehead and J. Reid Parker Director of Athletics Greg McGarity announced a proposal today to create Dooley Field at Sanford Stadium, in honor of legendary Bulldogs head football coach and athletics director Vincent J. Dooley.

“Coach Dooley’s many contributions to this university can be seen across campus,” said Morehead, “from Georgia athletics, where he achieved unrivaled success, to the learning environment, where today many academic programs and initiatives bear his name, such as the Dooley Library Endowment Fund to the Dooley Professorship in Horticulture. The university community will continue to benefit from his service and dedication for generations to come.”

Pending approval of the plans, an official ceremony to dedicate Dooley Field will take place inside Sanford Stadium prior to the Bulldogs’ 2019 home opener on September 7.

Too bad Michael Adams won’t be there.  Congrats to Coach Dooley for the honor.

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78 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

“Our time is coming…”

Just a reminder that when it comes to whistling in the dark, Larry Scott is a master.

11 Comments

Filed under Blowing Smoke, Pac-12 Football

The high price of maintaining a cupcake diet

I’ve been wondering for a while how long the scheduling math holds up for certain athletic departments.  It sounds like we’re getting closer to a reckoning.

Purdue has seven home games in 2019. It played seven at home last year, too. But the days of consistently having seven games in Ross-Ade Stadium appear to be finished. None of Purdue’s future schedules through 2025 has seven home games.

“We would like seven games from a pure economics, pure playing-in-front-of-your-home-crowd standpoint … all of that would make great sense,” said Purdue athletic director Mike Bobinski. “But so does everyone else. The math doesn’t work. At some point, there has to be some give and take certain years.”

Playing seven games in Ross-Ade Stadium has been the norm. Since 2006–when the NCAA began to allow schools to have 12 scheduled games–Purdue has played seven home games each season except for one: 2017, when it had only six games in Ross-Ade Stadium. That year, Purdue played a neutral site non-league game in Indianapolis’ Lucas Oil Stadium vs. Louisville to open the Jeff Brohm era. Before that, the last time Purdue played just six home games was in 2005.

“The problem with getting a seventh game a lot of years, the market to buy an opponent has gotten prohibitive,” said Bobinski. “It has gotten to the point where in the current economic reality, we would be upside down. We would be paying more than we take in.”

The seasons that present the most issues for Bobinski are even-numbered years, when Purdue plays just four of nine Big Ten games at home. In those seasons, it would be ideal to have all three non-conference games played in Ross-Ade Stadium. But getting non-league foes–who don’t want a return visit from Purdue–to come to West Lafayette is a pricey proposition.

Supply and demand, baby.  The mids sound like they’ve figured that out.

Scheduling home games with MAC schools–in which Purdue wouldn’t have to make a return visit–has become very expensive. MAC schools sit in the heart of Big Ten country. And they are popular home fodder for Big Ten schools. That competition has driven up the price to lure visits from MAC opponents. Schools like Ohio State, Michigan and Penn State–which have massive stadiums and fat checkbooks–are paying almost $2 million to MAC foes to visit their venues and not require a return visit, according to Bobinski.

“That just becomes math that doesn’t work for us,” he said. “We have stretched it up to $1.2 (million) or somewhere, and that’s a hold-your-breath deal for me to sign those.”

That leaves two options, play more FCS teams, something that carries its own cost, or increase the size of the conference schedule.  At some point, the latter is going to become an attractive option from a cost-savings perspective — and with another round of playoff expansion coming sooner or later, arguably a less risky option, to boot.

Something’s gonna give.

13 Comments

Filed under College Football, It's Just Bidness

When red and black turns to blue and orange

I keep saying it, but for me over the past two years, there’s been nothing more weirdly delightful than hearing Florida fans morph into what Georgia fans sounded like in the mid-aughts.

15 Comments

Filed under Gators, Gators..., Georgia Football

TFW your humble blogger ponders the existential chicken vs. egg question

Sooooo… which came first, the StingTalk thread, or the AJ-C troll?

Bless their hearts.

19 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Georgia Tech Football, Recruiting

Coaches vs. gamblers

Ooh, I think we’re gonna need some popcorn for this one.

The NCAA Gambling Working Group will propose the first-ever standardized national player availability report for college sports, two sources told CBS Sports.

Later this month, the working group will propose a pilot program that would have coaches list players as “available,” “possible” or “unavailable” for that week’s game without mentioning a specific body part or injury.

That seems pretty anodyne and a safe workaround for privacy concerns related to disclosing personal information about students.  Well, at least if you’re not a coach.

College football coaches are often noted for their lack of transparency when it comes to releasing injury information.

“I think as coaches we’re probably always wired not to give away the game plan,” Baylor coach Matt Rhule said. “We try to do what’s best for our kids. I think it has to be a bigger conversation.”

Washington State’s Mike Leach, for example, has been strictly against releasing any injury information.

When informed of the proposal, Texas coach Tom Herman said, “If I said ‘unavailable,’ I still want the right to make that a game-time decision.”

Those sorts of details have yet to be worked out, according to a source.

Good luck with that, he said.  The problem is that coaches’ control is only half the concern here for the folks running the sport.  Here’s the other half.

However, professional leagues don’t have to deal with federal privacy laws in their injury reports. The Family Educational Rights Privacy Act (FERPA) and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) keep an individual’s medical information private.

All of this is essentially intended to provide the most accurate information for bettors to keep the games from being corrupted. With the new gambling laws, college sources are already worried about injury information leaking out. That information could be used to get an unfair betting advantage and defraud the system.

“They’ve got to do something. They leave themselves open to corruption,” said Tom McMillen of college sports. McMillen is the president of Lead1 Association, which represents FBS athletic directors.

Every decade since the 1940s, college sports has endured at least one major point-shaving scandal.

Cue the “shocked, shocked” quote here.

The irony here is that coaches are going to lean on student privacy concerns as an excuse to defend their own turf.  And that may work!  When in doubt, doing it for the kids is always college sports’ go-to excuse.  So what if that allows for the occasional betting scandal?  If there’s one thing college athletic departments are good at — aside from doing it for the kids, of course — it’s sweeping pesky little problems that don’t affect the bottom line under the rug.

I mean, what’s a little corruption between good friends?  Just ask the NCAA as the shoe scandal prosecutions unfold.

6 Comments

Filed under Bet On It, College Football

I mean, say what you like about the tenets of 404, Dude, at least it’s an ethos.

I know it’s easy to make fun of certain aspects of Geoff Collins’ game, but, seriously, when’s the last time you saw an article like this about the genius and his staff?  Like never, maybe?  Gotta respect the effort, if nothing else.

9 Comments

Filed under Georgia Tech Football