Category Archives: College Football


ESPN has discovered the wide, wide world of sports gambling and the people running college football ain’t too happy about it.

“I don’t think those are things that ought to be a part of the presentation of college football, but maybe that’s the environment in which we find ourselves,” said Big 12 Conference commissioner Bob Bowlsby, adding that he was “quite sure that all of (the Big 12’s presidents and athletic directors) feel as I do that it’s inappropriate.”

So what are they gonna do about it?

About what you’d expect.

Arizona athletic director Greg Byrne, while noting his athletic department’s sponsorship deals with local casinos (which do not have sports books), said he’s concerned.

“Anytime there’s anything to do with sports gambling and college sports, understandably that will be something I would hope at some point will be discussed,” Byrne said.

Now there’s a guy who’s going to bring to real gravitas to the conversation.

“There is an existing concern about the inexorable march toward gambling being more and more central to sport,” Sankey told USA TODAY Sports. “It has clearly gotten more momentum based on messaging out of the NBA last year. We have to be mindful of the realities of the culture developing around us.”

Translation:  at some point in time, it’s gonna become a source of revenue the SEC can’t ignore.  And it’ll likely come from something like this:

Though it appears on the surface to be unrelated, several athletic directors connected the apparent new emphasis on sports betting with ESPN’s business relationships with companies like DraftKings and FanDuel, daily online fantasy sports businesses that promise cash prizes to winners. Last spring, according to multiple reports, ESPN’s parent company, Walt Disney Co., agreed to invest $250 million in DraftKings, but then backed out, apparently because of concerns that the enterprise too closely resembled gambling. Although the deal never came to fruition, DraftKings is spending several hundred million dollars in advertising over the next two years with ESPN, according to Sports Business Journal.

Although the bulk of the fantasy sports business — traditional or the daily version — has been centered on professional sports, college football is a growing portion of the business. The idea that fantasy sports would use college players’ names and performances to determine winners and payouts concerns athletic directors. Among other reasons, they’re concerned college athletes might be enticed to play the daily games — perhaps choosing themselves.

“We’ve been wrestling with all the issues around DraftKings and FanDuel,” Bowlsby said, “which I don’t think anybody can suggest isn’t gambling.”

But that’s exactly what ESPN and businesses like DraftKings and FanDuel suggest. Bowlsby noted that the Big 12’s TV contracts prohibit advertisements for gambling, other than for state-authorized lotteries, “but our television partners assert that it (fantasy sports games) isn’t gambling.”

After they cut that first check to your conference, you will too, Bob.  Bet on it.


Filed under College Football, ESPN Is The Devil, It's Just Bidness

Wednesday morning buffet

Rise and shine, campers.


Filed under College Football, Georgia Football, SEC Football, Stats Geek!, The Body Is A Temple

Thursday morning buffet

Indulge yourselves.

  • As the Auburn-Louisville game in Atlanta approaches, prepare to hear more of this.
  • Regrets, Gene Chizik has a few.
  • Mark Schlabach predicts this is Steve Spurrier’s last season.
  • Delusional optimism, And The Valley Shook style.
  • Kids, these days.
  • Spurrier, on Finebaum“Every now and then when I listen in to your show, I know the SEC fans are a little upset at Ohio State’s schedule and rightfully so to tell you the truth.” 
  • We’ve known Bobby Petrino’s an ambitious dick.  We just didn’t know how far back that went. “He opted to join the Tigers without informing his boss, Tom Coughlin, who was alerted of his offensive coordinator’s departure through an Auburn news release.”  And so, a legend was born.
  • Les Miles overdosed on coffee this week?  Sure, I can see that.


Filed under Big Ten Football, College Football, Gene Chizik Is The Chiznit, Georgia Football, SEC Football, The Body Is A Temple, The Evil Genius, Wit And Wisdom From The Hat

Oh, it’s on now.

D-1 football kicks off tonight at 6 PM, with North and South Carolina meeting, so it’s time to dust off one of my favorite clips to celebrate the start of another season.

As I said when I posted it last year, “A Brit who knows next to nothing about the sport, two programs I don’t care about and I still love that clip.”

If you’re not smiling at least a little right now, I don’t know what to tell you.


Filed under College Football

Gary Danielson is rounding into mid-season form.

Grumble, grumble” I’ve been a bit dismayed that the Heisman now goes to best spread quarterback in college football. That’s who wins it almost every year.”

Okay, so maybe I was a little surprised he accepted the premise of Ohio State as the number one team in the country without quibbling.  Of course, he could be just biding his time with that.


Filed under College Football

“How do you figure out if a kid wiIl translate to a two- or three-year starter as a college quarterback?”

Um… don’t you just look at who had the best stats at G-Day?

Evidently there’s more to it than that.  Who could have known?


Filed under College Football

And, lo, there was college football. And it was good.

Georgia won’t get going for another week, but that doesn’t mean today isn’t a good day.

Your favorite team probably doesn’t kick off until September 5 (or if you’re lucky, September 3). But your eyes should turn to Missoula, Montana this Saturday, August 29, for the true start of the season.

North Dakota State takes on Montana in the newly annual FCS Kickoff game, showcasing the best college football’s second tier has to offer. And this really is the best it has to offer, at least on one side. Montana has a fascinating new coach and hopes of getting back amongst the FCS elite, and North Dakota State is a true dynasty, a four-time championship steamroller that would look at home in the FBS.

We don’t get many opportunities to witness the power of a fully operational battle station. Here’s why you should watch NDSU try to blow up a planet at 3:30 p.m. ET on ESPN.

Say no more, right?


Filed under College Football