Category Archives: Blowing Smoke

TFW you try to pretend the horse isn’t already out of the barn

Now this is more like the NCAA I’ve come to know and love.

The “many already allowed by Division I rules” bit is a nice touch, don’t you think?  Totally explains why Team Emmert has been fighting like a bitch to have the ruling overturned on appeal.

Comments Off on TFW you try to pretend the horse isn’t already out of the barn

Filed under Blowing Smoke, See You In Court, The NCAA

“… Kyle better work because Emory is trying to get his job.”

Uh hunh… right, Dan.

He’s not ruling out Emory Jones taking the quarterback spot from Kyle Trask. Florida head coach Dan Mullen expects a competition between the two this season and while everyone expects Trask to be the guy, Mullen insists that Jones will see the field a great deal.

I’m not ruling out that I’m going to win the lottery.  We’ll see how that works out.


Filed under Blowing Smoke, Gators, Gators...

I’m sure he meant well.

What in the wide, wide world of sports is going on lately?  Yesterday it was the flap about Clemson keeping a lid on a story about a coach using a racial epithet in practice and now comes word about some tension at Florida State.

It appears to have started with a comment Mike Norvell, the head coach, gave to a beat writer from The Athletic.

Screenshot_2020-06-04 Tashan Reed on Twitter #FSU head coach Mike Norvell ( Coach_Norvell) had individual conversations wit[...]

On the surface, fairly anodyne stuff you wouldn’t be surprised to hear said by a typical head coach in the past few days.  Apparently, though, it didn’t go over well with one of FSU’s best players.


I have no idea where this is going, but Norvell’s got some fixin’ to do, to say the least.  Two incidents in a couple of days doth not a trend make, of course, but were I a head coach, it might behoove me to stick a finger in the air to see which way the wind blows before opening my mouth.


Norvell’s not a dumb guy.  He’s just used to being able to speak loosely about his player relations without being called on it.  Like a lot of his peers.


UPDATE:  Sounds like they’ve kissed and made up.


Filed under ACC Football, Blowing Smoke

Welcome back, my friends, to the show that never ends.

How do you know when a conference commissioner is bullshitting you?  When another conference commissioner tells you ($$).

On April 15, the 10 conference commissioners and one athletic director who make up the College Football Playoff Management Committee held a call with Vice President Mike Pence. As Pence pressed the group on what it would take for them to allow college football to resume, the response from the committee was clear: no school, no games. “Our players are students,” Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby said later that day. “If we’re not in college, we’re not having contests.”

That was one more piece of discouraging news for anxious fans who are hoping their teams might take the field this fall, even if no fans are allowed in the stadiums. Bowlsby’s comments gave the impression that unless campuses are open to all students, then sports will not take place.

As is often the case in these uncertain times, however, it is hard to state things in absolute terms. Follow-up interviews with six conference commissioners, including those from four of the Power 5 leagues, revealed that the scenarios under consideration are wider than the Pence call suggested. That offers the hope that games could in fact resume before campuses are completely open.

“I don’t think anyone said ‘all’ or ‘completely,’ ” Pac-12 commissioner Larry Scott said. “I think the best way to say it is until our campuses start to open up, I don’t see student-athletes being invited back. I certainly don’t envision student-athletes being brought back exclusively.”

In other words, it depends upon what the meaning of the word ‘exclusively’ is.  Bill Clinton would make an excellent conference commissioner, don’t you think?

They’re playing football.  It’s a matter of when, not if.


Filed under Blowing Smoke, College Football

Who’s foolin’ who?

There’s something about playoff expansion that brings out the bullshit artist in every conference commissioner.  Here, for example, are the supposedly tortured stylings of Jim Delany’s successor as head of the Big Ten:

“We have to ask ourselves what’s in the best interest of the student-athletes for them to be able to get a world-class education and participate and to remain healthy — healthy mentally, and physically, and emotionally and spiritually,” Warren, the first African American Power 5 commissioner, said in an interview with ESPN.

“If we do that, and we get people in the room to say, ‘If they were my son, or that were my grandson, and I would be comfortable with whatever decision is made,’ then we’ll know when that is right. No matter what we do, we have to put the best interests of the student-athletes at the center. We have to remember they are not professional athletes and they should not be held to a standard to win a national championship by playing 20 games.”

Well, unless the money is good enough.

What happens when stakeholders and market forces demand more of the same product? Ask the NCAA postseason men’s basketball tournament, which started with eight teams in 1939 and now has 68.

In 1981, when the NCAA considered expanding the tournament from 48 to 64 teams, Stanford athletics director Andy Geiger explained why he supported expansion.

”We all need money and that new TV contract kind of helps,” Geiger said then in the New York Times. ”You can increase the field now, and teams will earn as much as or more than they earned this year.”

From 1982 to 1984, CBS paid $16 million a year to televise the tournament. That doubled to $32 million with the expansion to 64 teams in 1985, leading the NCAA to “study ways of distributing what some feared could become an embarrassment of riches,” according to The Associated Press in 1985. Thirty-one years later, the NCAA announced an $8.8 billion, eight-year contract extension from CBS and Turner Sports through 2032.

Funny how that works.  And football playoff expansion will likely be just as lucrative.

One professional estimate predicts an eight-team playoff could fetch an additional $420 million a year from ESPN or whoever pays for it.

According to this estimate from Navigate Research, adding another four playoff games would add an additional 60 million viewers, which would be worth an additional $420 million at the rate of $7 per viewer. The Navigate estimate is based on the fact that playoff games in the current four-team format average around 65 million television viewers, which is roughly $7 per viewer for ESPN for those three games.

To use that tired chestnut, we know what you are, Mr. Warren.  We’re just haggling over the fee.


Filed under BCS/Playoffs, Blowing Smoke, It's Just Bidness

Bullshit just means more.

The logical contortions employed by the author of this article about LSU’s new football facility and the reactions thereto are certainly cringeworthy.  But then, he’s just following in the path of the AD:

LSU’s goal, as new athletic director Scott Woodward said, should be to be top notch in physics and football. Perhaps a facility like this will help LSU be better at both. Athletics should be the front porch of a university, attracting high-quality students and funding, not the other way round.

Yes, I’m sure the day funding to attract a quantum physics professor after discovering the football players have easy access to sleeping pods is just around the corner.


Filed under Academics? Academics., Blowing Smoke, SEC Football

Today, in self-ownership

That was said by the man whose conference added a championship game to a round-robin regular season conference schedule because he was worried about the playoffs.


Filed under Big 12 Football, Blowing Smoke

“Our time is coming…”

Just a reminder that when it comes to whistling in the dark, Larry Scott is a master.


Filed under Blowing Smoke, Pac-12 Football

At Auburn, a tradition unlike any other

That sure didn’t take long.  Three days after Auburn’s spring game, they’re already comparing Joey Gatewood to Cam Newton.

Auburn, where there’s always another Heisman quarterback candidate waiting in the wings to blossom under Gus’ guidance.


Filed under Auburn's Cast of Thousands, Blowing Smoke

Next, they’ll be building statues to him.

Boy, Dan Mullen can be an arrogant bugger when it suits him.  Listen to what he says about Felipe Franks.

“There are three statues in front of the stadium that make playing quarterback at Florida different than almost every other school in America,” Mullen says. “There’s no bigger job in the SEC than being the quarterback at Florida. So with that comes a lot of responsibility. What did he end up with 31 touchdowns and six interceptions last year? A lot of places, you’re up there. Not here. You better come to grips with that.”

What he’s pitching there is that Franks isn’t getting the adulation normally due him because he’s the Florida quarterback, that a guy who posted a ninth-best 124.69 passer rating in league play would ordinarily be a household name we’d be singing hosannas to but for his unfortunate choice of uniform colors.  Yeah, sure.

You’d think if there really were no bigger job in the SEC than being Florida’s quarterback, they’d have found a great one after Tebow left.


Filed under Blowing Smoke, Gators, Gators...