Daily Archives: February 22, 2021

Manball ain’t dead, y’all.

It’s just evolving.

Seriously, how many other SEC programs are going to have to grapple with parceling out carries to four or five qualified backs in 2021?  Georgia returns four players who finished in the top 30 in rushing yards per game last season and if Milton had played in one more game, he would have finished in the top 30, as well.

I’d call that an embarrassment of riches, except I’m not embarrassed and I doubt Kirby Smart is, either.

20 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, SEC Football, Stats Geek!

Doing the right thing?

I suppose there are two ways to take this ($$)

Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick said Monday the school won’t participate in EA Sports’ revived college football video game until “rules have been finalized governing the participation of our student-athletes.”

“As those rules are developed, it is our strong desire that student-athletes be allowed to benefit directly from allowing their name, image and performance history to be used in the game,” Swarbrick said in a statement. He said Notre Dame welcomes the return of the game, pending these changes.

… either that Notre Dame supports college athletes’ NIL compensation rights or that it’s simply cheap talk in the hope that no path to compensation rights ever becomes a reality, but I’m gonna hope it’s the former.

Either way, it strikes me as an indication of the game’s popularity and schools’ desire not to piss off its fans needlessly.

18 Comments

Filed under The NCAA

There’s a reason they call him The Portal Master™.

Florida may not have done so well with its 2021 recruiting class (although, to be fair, it’s not bad, either), but the Gators cleaned up on the transfer front.

The Florida Gators are the runaway winner of the transfer portal for 2021 according to the 247Sports ratings. Florida signed the top two rated players the entire portal and also added important depth on the interior defensive line. Tight end Arik Gilbert was one of the best in the SEC as a true freshman for LSU in 2020 and will be expected to step in and start in the role vacated by Florida tight end Kyle Pitts, who is off to the NFL Draft. Gilbert received a rating of 99 in high school and keeps that lofty rating here. The odds are good of Gilbert being a rare transfer non-QB being drafted in the first round.

Running back Demarkcus Bowman was also a five star in high school and keeps his rating after transferring a few weeks into his freshman season at Clemson. The ratings team believes his ability is unchanged. Penn State defensive tackle transfer Antonio Shelton received a grade of 87 and is expected to start for the Gators, while Auburn defensive tackle Daquan Newkirk was graded an 81. The ratings team expects Newkirk to provide good depth.

As Dirty Harry once said, a man’s gotta know his limitations.

33 Comments

Filed under Gators, Gators..., Transfers Are For Coaches.

“Terry Fair Burns It Down”

Fair was on Pruitt’s staff in 2017.  Jeremy didn’t make a good impression.

  • “Everything that went on with that program, to me it was was not a surprise what happened. [That was] one of the huge reasons that I made the decision not to stay on board, probably one of the best decisions I made.”
  • “I thought coming home was going to be the right thing, but in hindsight, it ended up being the worst thing.”
  • “Probably the best decision I made was to leave here and get out from under that Pruitt era because I was miserable as a coach.”
  • “I probably did more as a quality control [coach] when I was at UT under Butch Jones and Willie Martinez in my responsibilities and what I was allowed to do than when I came back, which was very disappointing.”
  • “There were a lot of great coaches on that staff. If you allow coaches to do what they have to do to be successful you’re going to get the development from players you’re looking for. I think the reason you haven’t seen many players develop (at Tennessee) is because those coaches hadn’t been really able to take players under their wing and do the things they were brought here to do.”
  • “You (Pruitt) haven’t allowed me to be myself since I’ve been here whether it’s coaching or on the recruiting trail.”

I guess the only coach Pruitt gave room to operate was Phil Fulmer.

55 Comments

Filed under Because Nothing Sucks Like A Big Orange

“The QBs”

Here’s an entertaining 30-minute look at what Todd Monken will have in his quarterback room this spring.

Beck vs. Vandagriff is one topic to follow.  Wither JT? is another.  With regard to the former, given Vandagriff’s physical issue, at least in the short run, it’s an open question for me.  As for Daniels, I think the guys have it right when they say Monken’s Job One this offseason is working on JT’s mechanics.

That being said, JT’s got a high floor, to say the least, based on what he accomplished last season.  Watch those clips from the Mississippi State game carefully.  MSU sold out on defense — and the Bulldogs weren’t bad on that side of the ball — with the idea that they’d make a quarterback who hadn’t played in sixteen months and was coming back from a knee injury beat them.  And Daniels did exactly that.  His first touchdown pass to Pickens was, in my humble opinion, his most impressive throw of the year.

But the other thing from that game was the three-play series that culminated in the 3rd down TD bomb to Jackson.  Watch all three plays in sequence and marvel at how Monken’s scheme has receivers open all over the field, play after play.

This offense has a chance to be special in 2021.

14 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

Not ready for you know what

First off, I owe you guys an apology.  I can’t believe I had nothing to say about Deion Sanders getting his first head coaching gig.

Fortunately for both you and me, it looks like I’ll have plenty of opportunities to rectify my mistake.  I mean, if this is the first Prime Time story right out of the gate

Following his team’s 53-0 win over Edward Waters on Sunday in his head coaching debut, Jackson State coach Deion Sanders was not in a celebratory mood when speaking to the media.

Instead, the Pro Football Hall of Famer shared with reporters how angry he felt when he returned to the coaches’ room to find that all of his belongings had been taken, including his phone, wallet, credit cards and watches.

Shortly after Sanders shared this, however, Jackson State officials told Sports Illustrated‘s Ross Dellenger that Sanders’s belongings had not actually been stolen, and were simply misplaced after being relocated for safekeeping. They have since been found and returned to Sanders, bringing a positive resolution to a bizarre sequence of events.

But Sanders denied this version of the events later Sunday evening, saying on Twitter that his belongings were stolen out of his bag in his office but the perpetrator was caught in the act by Sanders’s assistant. In a statement to Dellenger afterward, Sanders said the items were later found “stashed away in another location.”

Sanders called the Sunday’s win, which culminated in him receiving an ice bath on the sidelines and being presented with the game ball by his players, “One of the best moments I’ve ever had in my professional sports career, emotionally.” He described the alleged theft as a “malicious personal attack” and said it was the second time he’d had property stolen from him since moving to Jackson in December.

It’s not every day you see a football coach throw his school under the bus, especially after his first game.  (Not that I’m complaining.)  Pass the popcorn, please.

27 Comments

Filed under Coach Prime

Musical palate cleanser, blue and new edition

This may be a quasi-snobbish observation, but, as much as I love the blues, a lot of contemporary stuff leaves me cold.

Fortunately that’s not the case for Brit blues artist Errol Linton’s No Entry album that was recently released (h/t).  It’s such a relaxed, clean and easy sounding record.  As Sal mentions in the linked piece, there’s no overplaying.  It’s not a record that tries to get in your face with instrumental or vocal virtuosity.  It just finds a groove and stays there.

He senses a little Sonny Boy and Mayall vibe.  Me, I hear this song and feel like Linton’s channeling some Slim Harpo.  See what you think.

4 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized