Daily Archives: July 8, 2021

The Dawg porn, she is piping hot.

Get you some.

“Arik Gilbert’s arrival in Athens has been the talk of the offseason,” Young wrote. “He brings a unique blend of size and speed for a receiver. His playmaking ability is needed as George Pickens is sidelined. Questions of Gilbert’s off-field dedication may have been answered with his recent honor of Academic Player of the Week. Should all of that be in order, and should Gilbert be in a healthy place personally, he has every opportunity to become a superstar for the Bulldogs.”

“I was confident the Bulldogs were going to set school records this fall for points and yardage per game prior to Gilbert’s arrival,” Rollins wrote. “I’m even more confident now. No matter how they use him, whether primarily on the outside or a little bit of everywhere, he’s going to be a matchup problem. While he—and the remaining receiving group—might not put up eye-popping individual numbers because of the numerous weapons at JT Daniels’ disposal, Gilbert’s presence is a game-changer and gives offensive coordinator Todd Monken even more options for creativity.”

I hope that was as good for you as it was for me.

64 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

“Besides Georgia…”

Gah.  Just shoot me.  Now.  Please.

22 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Media Punditry/Foibles

“I’m happy for those guys.”

Again, this is one of those moments when I hope you’ve got an Athletic subscription, because David Ubben’s piece on NIL compensation ($$) is definitely worth a read, starting with this lede:

Here’s a sentence I’ve never heard: “Does that kid working the register at the student bookstore on campus know they have to pay taxes?”

He’s right.  All this faux concern about how college athletes will handle their brave new world — whether it comes from resentment, amateur romanticism, or whatever other motive you may want to attribute — is exactly that.  Fake.

I don’t pretend to know where things are headed or where they’re likely to finish.  I suspect that anyone who pretends they do know after a week or so is talking straight out of their ass.  What I do know is that these kids’ lives got a little bit fairer, because they’ve been given a little more control over what is theirs.  The rest of this is nothing but noise, at least for now.  As Ubben puts it,

Then there’s the possibility that some players might earn more than others. Is that fair? Will there be fistfights in the locker room borne of jealousy? We don’t hear many tales of top salespeople in companies being assaulted in their offices by less-productive employees who believe they should earn a commission on someone else’s sales out of fairness.

Should the amount of money players can make be capped? Find me something less American than that. Other than college sports a week ago.

Far too much of the conversation has centered around inspiring fear of what might happen to a few people in a few instances. Far too little has centered around what will happen for far more athletes now and in the future.

My less than educated guess is that for most college athletes things won’t change too much because of NIL.  But maybe they’ll change just enough to make a difference.

Some might waste it and find themselves at the end of their careers with little to show for it. But there have been enough cautionary tales of players going broke in professional sports to learn from, and it doesn’t take millions of dollars to change a life. Sell some T-shirts, hold a few autograph signings or get a local endorsement from a car dealership. What can $20,000 in endorsement money do?

Over the course of a college career, that’s a realistic earning goal for a lot of athletes. And many athletes across a variety of sports will cross that modest threshold in a single year. It’ll improve their college experience substantially. For some, it could change their life.

Again, I don’t know.  And I can’t say that I really care where the numbers may wind up landing.  I never have.  It’s enough for me that these athletes have been given the opportunity to… well, have something of the same opportunity you and I had when we started out.  A chance to make something without being prevented from doing so because somebody went to great (and illegal) lengths to preserve a lucrative business model.  With that opportunity will come experience, some good, some bad.  But at least they’re now in a world where they get to learn about that.

I’m more than good with just that.

48 Comments

Filed under The NCAA

Hope springs eternal.

This is a weird question.

I thought Florida fans believed college football didn’t start until 1990.

17 Comments

Filed under Gators, Gators...

Another best coaching list, with a twist

PFF’s top 20 coaches list tries a different angle:

These college football head coach rankings are a shoutout to the underdog and the unwanted, a chance to recognize those who might not be in the national spotlight but deserve their moment for clawing their programs up from the depths and steering it toward a new, compelling future.

It’s always difficult to examine coaches through the prism of wins, losses and efficiency rankings. After all, coaches who win a seemingly endless number of games aren’t necessarily good, and those who lose games aren’t necessarily bad.

The opportunity to win games was the biggest factor here. Flying above or below program expectations was the most important point when putting this list together.

Funnily enough, Saban and Swinney top the list.  But check out number three:

3. Kirby Smart, Georgia

Imagine a world in which Kirby Smart is a two-time national champion, one where his team did not blow a 10-point lead to Alabama in the fourth quarter of the 2018 championship game and then a 14-point third-quarter lead in the SEC Championship the following year.

It’s a future that Dawg fans can only dream of because Smart is still only a one-time SEC champion and zero-time national champion. It’s unfair, but it’s hard to hold two fluke comebacks against him — not that he’s totally off the hook for those two Bama losses — but he has surpassed Mark Richt’s 74% win rate with his 79% win rate in six years.

Georgia’s defense had fallen to 13th in expected points added (EPA) allowed per play in the two years before Kirby’s arrival, but he’s since straightened that out. The program ranks sixth in the same metric in the five years since he became head coach.

Gee, no mention of Justin Fields there.  I’m not sure how seriously we should take that.

By the way, Dan Mullen pops up at number five, and there’s actually some valid reasoning behind it.

It’s hard to truly describe the offensive mess that Florida found itself in before Dan Mullen arrived in Gainesville. From 2014 to 2017, the Gators offense ranked 120th in EPA per play — that is not just bad, it is horrendous.

Mullen had them up to 29th in Year 1 and 30th in Year 2, and then they exploded with an 11th-place finish in 2020. Considering those advancements were mostly made with other coaches’ recruiting classes, those numbers are as impressive as it gets. We also shouldn’t forget his sterling 60% win rate as head coach of Mississippi State, where he took over a program that had only gone 21-38 in the five previous years under Sylvester Croom.

For all his flaws — and we’ve certainly documented plenty of them here — the dude has a seriously decent offensive mind.  Just not decent enough to overcome said flaws.

14 Comments

Filed under Gators, Gators..., Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

“The brokers are seeing this an opportunity to write a tremendous amount of business.”

You may not like where the NIL train is taking college football, but here’s a potential unforeseen consequence from Alston worth noting.

While the practical consequences of the Supreme Court’s decision in NCAA v. Alston will likely remain unsettled for months, those involved in the business of insuring college athletes with pro potential are already licking their chops.

… Up until now, the NCAA has allowed schools to pay the premiums of players’ disability policies and loss-of-value riders—coverage that is triggered if an athlete suffers an injury that directly and substantially impacts their future earnings as a rookie—but only out of the limited pots of money provided to each institution’s Special Assistance Fund or Student Athlete Opportunity Fund. Those monies, provided by the NCAA through a portion of its basketball tournament proceeds, are also meant to cover a host of other expenses related to athlete welfare and academic support.

For certain schools with large athletic budgets, and which annually produce multiple NFL or NBA draft prospects, the requirement to only use SAF and SAOF money likely means they are spending less, and perhaps significantly less, on athlete injury insurance coverage than they otherwise would if allowed to tap into their general sports budgets.

The Alston ruling’s impact on disability premiums is complex, but Richard Giller, a Los Angeles-based attorney who represents athletes in injury insurance-related matters, views it as an eminently logical extension of the litigation.

“As I see [the Alston] ruling,” Giller asserts, “schools no longer have a cap on what they can spend on insurance policy premiums for their top student athletes.”

Why so?

In Giller’s mind, the key to Alston was how the Supreme Court affirmed Wilken’s earlier commentary about the NCAA already permitting, albeit with restrictions, schools to pay for LOV insurance premiums. Those costs, like others incidental to an athlete’s collegiate experience, belie a “consistent definition” for amateurism, as Gorsuch wrote in the opinion.

Giller also draws attention to remarks raised by Chief Justice John Roberts during the oral argument in March.

“You’re paying the insurance premium so that they will play at college and not in the pros?” Roberts bluntly asked NCAA counsel Seth Waxman. “Doesn’t that undermine the amateur status theory you have?”

Roberts described this seeming contradiction as “the most troublesome.”

In response, Waxman explained that loss-of-value coverage is “a cost of participating in athletics that permits athletes who want to receive an education, instead of pay, for their play can continue to do so.” In other words: It appears to be an “educational-related benefit” by virtue of it encouraging athletes to stay in school.

By that logic, conceivably, anything that might encourage an athlete to stay in school, such as a new car, could be defined as an “educational-related benefit.”

You don’t have to be Mark Emmert to see the size of the hole the NCAA’s argument opened.  But skipping past that own goal for the time being, if it does in fact change how much schools can pay for college athletes’ insurance, there would seem to be two logical conclusions to infer from that.  One, it probably would encourage some players to stay in school — and perhaps lower the pressure to opt out of bowl games.  Two, does anyone really need to spell out how, once again, such a policy favors programs with the resources to pay the premiums for increased coverage?

I’m sure nobody would mention such an advantage on the recruiting trail.

2 Comments

Filed under It's Just Bidness, The NCAA

Saying you’re 6-16 without saying you’re 6-16

Coach 404, y’all.

I do give the guy credit for making the effort.  He was handed the Herculean task of trying to get the program out of the ditch the genius steered it into.  The thing is — if Collins doesn’t work out, where the heck does Tech go next?

36 Comments

Filed under Georgia Tech Football