Compare and contrast.
If you haven’t been paying attention, D-1 football kicks off tonight, Down Under, with Cal facing off against Hawaii.
Which means it is once again time to cue up the Stephen Fry clip and welcome another glorious season of college football.
It is a testament to how much I love CFB that I can appreciate an Iron Bowl game for the spectacle it is. It’s my sincere hope that the people running the sport don’t screw up that vibe beyond redemption.
I’m surprised this isn’t getting more attention, but if you’ll dial up the latest episode of The Audible with Feldman & Mandel to around the 4:30 mark, you’ll hear Bruce Feldman report that not only has the NCAA spoken with some current SEC players about Ole Miss’ recruiting, but at least two SEC head coaches have also spoken with the NCAA.
Even juicier are the alleged motives behind that: “There was a lot of acrimony and frustration with Ole Miss and the NCAA and how it was handled at that point…”
Whoa. We’re gonna need a bigger bag of popcorn.
I wish I could say I share Pete Fiutak’s optimism about the margin of Georgia’s victory in the opener against North Carolina, but with the way I feel right now, a 37-17 result would be more like a shocking surprise. (Not that I wouldn’t take it.)
That being said, I do think Fiutak gets one thing right that a lot of Georgia fans are brushing over, largely in an attempt to justify Smart starting Jacob Eason.
What’s Going To Happen?
Georgia will look fantastic. The pressure is on Smart to have his team looking strong and tough from Game One, and it’s going to do just that on both sides of the ball by being more physical and more energetic – that’ll matter in a game like this. [Emphasis added.]
I agree. Smart’s not looking to the future in his first game. He’s a competitor. He also wants to send a message that he’s ready for the biggest job in his life.
If Jacob Eason wins the starting job out of the gate, it won’t be because Smart’s already looking forward to 2017. It’ll be because his head coach thinks Eason gives him the best chance of winning on September 3, 2016.
There’s always something.
- Kirby Smart thinks Georgia’s receivers are going to have to contribute by committee, which is code for saying he doesn’t have a real go-to guy in the bunch.
- The Seilers are looking at taking steps to strengthen the Uga breed.
- Of all the things mentioned in this piece about how to beat Alabama, Step 5 seems the most relevant.
- USA Today looks at some metrics to rank the conferences.
- Gus picks Sean White to start at quarterback.
- Tim Beckman, North Carolina hardly knew ‘ye… which I think is the school chancellor’s point.
- Bill Connelly ranks all D-1 teams by returning production. For all the offseason talk about North Carolina returning a bunch of starters and Georgia having significant holes in its roster, the Dawgs rank significantly higher than do the Heels.
Uncle Verne may not want one, but I suspect he’s gonna get one.
What would be great would be for CBS to round up every player who’s ever been the object of a Verne crush and get them to offer up a tribute to the man during the SECCG. You know, for old times’ sake. Make it happen, fellas.
From Spurrier’s forthcoming book, Head Ball Coach, comes this little reminder of how cozy things once were between him and Georgia’s AD:
Over the years I’ve saved certain special comments for Clemson, Georgia, Tennessee, and FSU. And I always stood behind the quotes I actually made.
Probably my favorite quote was a comment I made on why South Carolina always preferred playing Georgia early in the season.
I said, “I sort of always liked playing them that second game because you could always count on them having two or three key players suspended.” Their AD, Greg McGarity, who I knew when he was at Florida, remarked: “How can you be mad at him for saying that? It’s the truth!”
Nothing like enabling an asshole who’s also a big rival. It’s just another reminder that McGarity’s mouth can be his own worst enemy at times.