Mike Slive on freshman ineligibility

It sounds like Jim Delany’s got some convincing to do.

Hard to argue with any of that.  But if the Big Ten thinks it knows best, I’m sure Slive won’t object to that conference going its own way on the matter.

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Filed under Academics? Academics., SEC Football, The NCAA

The defense’s next step

Something from Ed Aschoff’s post today on SEC spring preview questions:

8. Are any teams in the SEC really pegged for a national championship run?
The SEC has a handful of contenders, but none of them are polished to this point. Two favorites to watch? How about Auburn and Georgia? The Bulldogs still need to find a quarterback but might be the most complete SEC [sic] otherwise. Running back Nick Chubb seems willing to carry the offense, while the defense should fill its current holes nicely this spring.

That’s quite an assumption, isn’t it?

I mean, Pruitt did a good job last season masking the deficiencies in the secondary.  As mentioned earlier today, he’s got some real talent to work with at outside linebacker.  I’m also a believer in second-year improvements.  But he’s got a monumental job replacing a lot of experience on the defensive line.  He’s also got to replace two inside linebackers who, despite their flaws, were mainstays for the defense.

At least he’s got experienced players to plug the gaps created with the departures of Herrera and Wilson.  On the defensive line, though, he’s got to find some freshmen who can, if not start, at least shore up the two-deep significantly.  How realistic do you think Aschoff is being here?

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Filed under Georgia Football

In loco parentis

An Arkansas player is charged with DWI and Bert takes away his driving privileges.

Maybe next time, he’ll be grounded, too.

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Filed under Bert... uh... Bret Bielema, Crime and Punishment

Oh, so now you care about “legal responsibility”.

Kinda funny to hear that sort of defense from the NCAA after Mark Emmert moved heaven and earth to penalize Penn State.

Maybe freshman ineligibility will fix this.

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Filed under Academics? Academics., See You In Court, The NCAA

Why it’s hard to take Jim Delany at face value.

Andy Staples tries to be fair-minded about Delany’s stance on freshman ineligibility, but here’s where the buck stops:

… Unfortunately for Delany, reality has shifted since 1966. Back then, college sports were a business but not a multibillion-dollar business. Coaches, athletic directors and conference commissioners in the most powerful leagues made decent enough wages by the standard of the day, but nowhere near the megabucks they make now. No commissioner would have envisioned that he’d be the de facto head of a cable television network.

But that’s what Delany is now. He has made millions off college athletics. He created the Big Ten Network. He will be the one watching as ESPN and FOX trip over one another to throw money at the Big Ten when its first-tier media rights become available next year. In fact, it’s easy to argue no one is more responsible for turning college sports into the cutthroat business it is today than Delany. It also doesn’t help that Delany and his fellow commissioners needed a host of federal lawsuits to convince them to give the football and basketball players whose efforts produce all of the money their first raise—if you can call the cost-of-attendance stipends coming down the pipe a raise—since the 1940s. When an administrator suggests anything that appears to take something away from the athletes upon whom the business is built, he will be accused of having ulterior motives.

Particularly when said administrator has a track record of overstating his case.  And when his latest stand is conveniently limited to the two sports which generate the main part of college athletics revenue, that doesn’t help.

Another thing Staples touches on that deserves more attention is what the end game of returning to a model where freshman football and men’s basketball student-athletes couldn’t see the field would look like.

… The idea is that players would have fewer responsibilities as freshmen and would have more time to acclimate to college life and college classes. The most pie-in-the-sky model would severely limit the amount of time the athletic programs could require of their freshmen. Yet the truth is no matter what the rules say coaches would still force players to do everything except play in the games. So, realistically, the players would miss out on the most fun part of being an athlete and only get a few hours back in return. That’s hardly a fair trade. Plus, most coaches would want to field freshman teams that would then play one another. That’s what happened before 1972, and it would probably happen again.

Given that we live in a world of “voluntary” summer practices and 20-hour per week limitations that are conveniently worked around, I think that’s spot on.  Most of these kids aren’t enrolling at State U for the chance to become Rhodes Scholars, and their coaches aren’t expecting that either. They need those kids preparing for their sophomore years on the field.  If all ineligibility boils down to is these kids having a few extra hours on their hands on a few Saturday afternoons in the fall, it’s hard to see how that magically translates into full-blown scholarhood.  But maybe those of you who think Delany’s on to something here can explain how it would help more.

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Filed under Academics? Academics., The NCAA

An embarrassment of riches

Georgia is so deep at outside linebacker that Pruitt in essence is going to have to create a new spot to get as many of the OLBs on the field at the same time as he can.

This, too.

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Filed under Georgia Football

What goes up, keeps going up.

Here’s a look at what SEC schools paid their head coaches in 2006 and what they’re paying today.  It’s pretty frickin’ jarring to see the comparison.

And that doesn’t include the money these schools have paid to their fired coaches.

You may think it’s insane, but it’s actually rational.  The increasing amount of money flowing in isn’t going to the labor force, but it has to go somewhere, and if you’re competitive, that means coaching salaries and facilities.

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Filed under It's Just Bidness, SEC Football