Daily Archives: February 5, 2022

It’s what’s on both sides of the jersey that counts now.

The NIL moment I suspect most folks have been waiting for is here.

LSU announced a partnership with Fanatics and OneTeam Partners to allow co-branded customized jerseys for nearly the entire team. It’s the first such jersey deal for a program with near unanimous approval from the players.

The customized jerseys will feature the individual player’s name and number on the back, with each player compensated with a percentage of the jersey sales. To say this is a monumental deal for the Tigers in their efforts with NIL deals for its players would be an understatement.

This is the kind of thing a year from now everyone is going to step back and ask, “NCAA, this is what you were fighting to prevent?  WTF?”

Get this to Athens, stat, Butts-Mehre.



Filed under It's Just Bidness

A match made in heaven

Speaking for myself, the most revealing thing about the Harsin news this week is the discovery of how prurient a chunk of my readership is.  I’ve gotten my fair share of head shaking emails this week, to be honest.

Folks, if you’re judging the value of a person on whether her looks justify someone blowing up his career, his family, millions of dollars, etc., that says more about you than it does about her.  Besides, there’s plenty of evidence out there already to suggest the problem isn’t that Harsin’s a horndog.

Instead, it may be that he’s the SEC’s Randy Edsall.

In his first season as Auburn football coach, Bryan Harsin created a divisive culture in which relationships with certain players were neglected and staff members felt ignored, according to multiple sources with direct knowledge of the inner workings of the Auburn football program under Harsin.

The inside view of the program comes as Harsin’s tenure with the Tigers has come under the microscope. The contentious relationships described to The Advertiser were in the backdrop of significant coaching staff changeover, widespread player defections and came to light days after Auburn failed to add a single recruit on National Signing Day on Wednesday…

Nineteen Auburn players have entered the transfer portal since the end of the season.

Multiple sources said Harsin would not speak to players he didn’t like when he wanted them out of the program. He would cut off correspondence with the player and family members.

Position coaches were tasked with telling players Harsin wanted out that they should leave the program.

“He’s going to send somebody else to do the dirty work,” one source said.

Another source recalled one instance of a player texting Harsin to apologize for a poor performance in a game. The player asked for guidance on how he could improve. Harsin did not reply to the text message. Instead, he had the player’s position coach call the player to tell him he needed to leave the program.

No class and gutless is no way to run a football program, son.  Maybe add awkward to the list, too.

A source said Harsin made efforts to relate to players like the ones he had at Boise State – often from a working-class white demographic – but did not always make the same effort to connect with others – often Black players from urban areas in the South. However, the source said they never heard Harsin use racist remarks or language.

When leading wide receiver Kobe Hudson entered the transfer portal in January, he tweeted, “He from the north I understood him, I’m from the south he didn’t understand me,” without naming Harsin. He transferred to UCF to play for former Auburn coach Gus Malzahn.

“There are sometimes players that are going through personal things that (Harsin) knows about, and he doesn’t have empathy for those situations,” one source said. “Whether it be a kid from a single-parent family, or a kid who’s going through struggles in life. I don’t think he has true empathy for kids.”

“How do you expect a young man to grow when you don’t even talk to them,” another source said, “or if you talk down to them, or if you tell them to get out of your office?”

Hell, Harsin might be worse than Edsall.  At least Randy supported player compensation.

A source also said Harsin hated the concept of name, image and likeness and made that clear to players. Harsin was particularly critical of players from low-income families who received money from NIL deals because he thought they lost their focus on football, one source added.

It wasn’t just the players, either.

Sources said Harsin was often quick to dismiss input from assistants. Four games into the season, he fired Cornelius Williams, a young and respected receivers coach from Alabama who had stints at Troy, South Alabama, North Alabama, Jacksonville State and UAB.

Sources were puzzled by Williams’ firing, and Harsin didn’t widely provide a reason for it, the sources said. But the decision removed from the staff a coach who connected well with players — something Harsin couldn’t afford.

“(Williams) did nothing but did his damn job,” one source said. “He had a great relationship with the players.”

Harsin replaced him by promoting offensive analyst Eric Kiesau, who was an assistant coach for Harsin at Boise State. When Mason left for Oklahoma State in January, Harsin promoted linebackers coach Jeff Schmedding, another former Boise State assistant.

I’m sensing a pattern there.  Occam’s razor suggests that Harsin’s problem isn’t that he’s coaching with his dick.  It’s that he is a dick.

This appears to be such a bad culture match that I’m honestly surprised nobody picked up on it when he was interviewed.  Let’s just hope if Auburn decides to part ways with Harsin — and at this point, I think it’s a win for us Dawg fans either way they go — they leave the decision makers in place.


Filed under Auburn's Cast of Thousands

“We all kind of know, in our hearts, what’s happening in our game.”

In an honest world seeking balance, the issue of how playoff expansion might affect the health of college players asked to suit up for more games would be taken seriously, perhaps to the point of considering reducing the number of games played in the regular season.  That’s how the FCS division handled the tradeoff.

But who are we kidding here?  This is P5 football, baby, and cash is king.  Nobody’s cutting games.  Instead, they’ll go back to the old playbook and make some mouth noises about doing something for the kids that’s really for somebody else’s benefit.

Like this ($$).

“I don’t think (lengthening the season) is entirely negative,” said Dr. Lee Kaplan, the medical director of the University of Miami athletic department and the team physician for the Miami Marlins. “It actually could be a positive because it will deepen our understanding around recover in-season. Your exposures could be the same as the 13, 14-game season right now.”

“At some point, we have to say: Here’s the format, and we’re going to have to adjust to that format,” SEC commissioner Greg Sankey said last month. “It’s not games. It’s exposures. It’s contacts. So then you think, how can we adjust the game in the modern era to meet a set of different demands?”

You can probably guess where this is headed.

ESPN’s been jonesing for shorter game times for years.  And, now, what a perfect excuse player safety provides!

Aside from providing fans with less product for the same money, the other thing about such a rule change is that it will make comebacks more difficult.  These people are bound and determined to suck all the life out of college football.  But at least they won’t make viewers suffer the inconvenience of having to watch the first five minutes of a game on the Ocho.

When they go to a 24-team playoff, maybe they can offset that by making the quarters twelve minutes long.


Filed under BCS/Playoffs, The Body Is A Temple

The new tats and weed

Revealing quote from this AP article about how several state legislatures are busy revising laws they recently passed on NIL compensation for college athletes, because the NCAA never stepped up to regulate NIL compensation after getting slammed by the Supreme Court last year:

Florida state Rep. Chip LaMarca, author of the original law and the proposed change, said he is not interested in repealing the whole thing, just tweaking it to let schools get more directly involved in helping athletes make deals. LaMarca said he doesn’t want to eliminate other provisions, such as mandatory financial training designed to help athletes manage their contracts and earnings.

“Repealing the bill would not be about protecting the athletes,” LaMarca said.

His effort has struggled to gain traction, however. House Speaker Chris Sprowls this week called it a low priority while adding, “to a certain extent it’s like a race to bottom in college sports. Like, how many sports cars can we put in the hands of 18-year-olds?”

I’m sure there are folks in Tuscaloosa and College Station fully prepared to answer that question, Chris.


Filed under It's Just Bidness, Political Wankery, The NCAA

My Gawd, a freshman!

Quite the physical specimen here:

I don’t know about you, but the prospect of having to tackle him operating with a full head of steam in the open field seems fairly daunting.


UPDATE:  Moar Dawg porn…

Young Mr. Smith is coming in as an edge rusher, in case you didn’t remember.


Filed under Georgia Football