Thursday, June 30, 2011

Recruiting Uga






While shopping for a Chevy truck the other night, the salesman was doing his usual verbal foreplay in the hopes I'd take the bait for his overpriced item. He noticed my class ring (whether its when I flipped him off, I cannot say) and we got onto the subject of UGA. He said that Chevrolet is negotiating with the Seilers and making Uga their spokesdawg. I reminded him that Richt endorses Ford and he was told that wouldn't be a problem because (allegedly) all that Sonny Seiler wants in return is a new Suburban every 2 years for the life of the deal.


A rough draft of the commercial to be aired, should they come to an agreement, is like this:


Uga is walking thru a parking lot and stops in front of a Toyota truck with a UT tag on the front. He proceeds to pee on the tire.


He then comes to a Ford truck with an Gator tag on the front. He then pees on the tire.


Next, he passes a Chevy truck with a GA Tech tag on the front. He goes to the tire, stops, then looks at the camera.


The next shot shows him driving off in a Chevy and a voiceover says, "I guess some people do learn."


Sounds great and it be more good exposure around the area, but I just hope the new Uga is a bit more lively than the last couple of them (R.I.P. Damn Good Dawgs!) were.


I did, however, tell the man I hoped to see a deleted scene of Uga defecating on the hood of the Gator tag-sporting F150, followed by Uga blurting out, "IF YA SMELL WHAT UGA IS COOKIN'!"


Awkward silence followed and no sale was made...yet.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Can’t Do It…..but yet I do

As Rev Posted today, the SEC is going through one of the greatest periods of athletics of any conference in history. Without question, the shift of power has moved southeast. Granted we don’t have the 250 sports that each PAC 10, 11, or 12 school has but the SEC is becoming a powerhouse in almost everything we try.

I’m using “we” very generously. Which brings me to the point of the post, how do you feel when a fierce rival from our conference wins a national title. Part of me feels pride in the fact that we are playing the best every year and if we win, it means we earned it. The other part HATES every ounce of it. The whole mentality of take my ball and go home comes to mind. If we can’t win, I sure don’t want someone I dislike to win.

The ultimate lesser of two evils debate played itself out over the last two nights. UF and USC played in the finals of the CWS. Yes, the same CWS that we should have won for the 2nd time just 3 years ago. This was a HUGE no-win situation for me. I mean how can I cheer for UF in anything. Not to mention that if they win a baseball title, they would become one of only a very select few schools to have won national titles in all three major sports and the only SEC school (this is from self research from years ago, so I might not be 100% on this, but pretty sure it still holds true). On the other hand, USC had never won anything until last year’s baseball title. While I really liked the idea of us and LSU being the only SEC schools with baseball titles, I was okay with USC winning last year because it only meant they tied us. Which of course means that this year’s title gives them 2 to our 1. Although it is hard for me to accept that the Chickens are better than us in anything, this was the lesser evil that I choose last night. [side bar: we really need an upgraded baseball stadium, the better SEC teams have really stepped it up]

This is of course way more prevalent in recent football title games where we have to choose between SEC and someone else. I don’t really have issues with Bama or LSU, so I’m all in for SEC in those games. BUT when it’s Florida, Auburn, or even Tennessee years back, I have a very difficult time cheering for them. I usually start out against them and turn right around kick-off and end up mildly cheering for the SEC.

So please college sports gods, stop putting me in this position. Is it really asking too much to just not have the 10ish schools that I loathe not playing for titles to start with.

Strength Everywhere Conference



Not that UGA has contributed much to this the past few years, but I guess at least it's good to be an SEC fan.


Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Jarvis Jones Eligibility Questions

I know I'm a little late to the game getting something posted about this, I just wasn't sure how to analyze it.  And to be honest, I'm still not sure what to say.  The best analysis I've seen on it possibly working out ok for us is over on Leather Helmet Blog.  Read the article, and read CFBZ's comment under the article as well.  Looks like everything is hinging on the "pre-existing relationship" argument, though I'm not sure how airtight that argument is.

The NCAA has been so hit-and-miss with their enforcement recently that there's no telling what direction they'll take.  They've come under a lot of scrutiny for not being tough enough recently, so they may try to make an example out of this situation.  In the meantime, I'll be sitting here with my fingers crossed, because if we lose Jones' athletic and playmaking ability for the first 4 games like we lost AJ last year, it's really going to hurt what Grantham is wanting to do with the defense.  With the first 2 games that we've got, we need all the playmakers on the field that we can get.

-Rev.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

A Different Kind of Motivation

Steve Hummer has a really good article over on the AJC about Richt's trip to Honduras, and balancing his interests outside of football with what is required to be successful in the SEC.  A few months ago, Fran Tarkenton vocalized what has at least crossed the minds of most UGA fans the past few years:

“[Richt] is a wonderful guy,” Tarkenton told Atlanta’s 680 The Fan. “He is a good Christian guy. He wants to be a missionary. He goes on missions. That is a wonderful thing. But do you know the religion of [Alabama’s] Nick Saban? Or [Auburn assistant] Gus Malzahn? Or [Oregon’s] Chip Kelly? I don’t think we care what their religion [is]. We hire them to be football coaches. If we are hiring religious instructors, let’s go to the Candler School of Theology over here in Decatur and get some of their people to come and coach our football team.”
However, Richt counters with a list of coaches who have proven that you can have interests (specifically religious interests) outside of football and still be successful:

Richt rejects any notion that his heightened interest in serving a humanity outside the school’s athletic association mailing list conflicts with the demands of college football’s toughest conference. Success does not require its servants to wear blinders, he argues.
“Ask Tony Dungy if he was that way,” said Richt, beginning to list former big-time professional or college coaches who shared an active spiritual side. “Ask Bobby Bowden. Ask Tom Landry. Ask Tom Osborne. Those guys had success. We’ve had success, tremendous success. Lately, though, it hasn’t been much to write about.
“I think [the idea that winning requires complete tunnel vision] has been proven untrue and it’s still untrue.” 
Maybe it's just the homer in me, but I think that Richt's desire to be able to make an impact in the missions field may be his biggest motivator to turning the Dawgs back around, not his biggest obstacle.  As evidenced by putting his lakehouse on the market, Richt has a strong desire to be able to make more financial contributions to mission work.  You know what the biggest obstacle to being able to give money away is?  Unemployment.  Not that Richt hasn't already made a lot of money, but if he coaches another 10 years or so at UGA like he has said he wants to, that will be at least another $30 million that he'll make (less taxes, of course).  If he gets fired at UGA, I don't doubt that he would end up with another coaching job, but I do doubt that it would be at another school with the financial resources that UGA has, and he would likely take a significant hit in future earnings.  So in my opinion, his renewed desire to make an impact in missions work actually dovetails nicely with the desire of the fan base to see a renewed desire for success throughout the football program.

We've stated this many times here, but I don't think there's anybody in our fan base that doesn't want Richt to be the guy who turns us back around.  You simply can't find a better human being to be your head coach.  As a fan, it's one thing to feel connected to your team, but it takes it to another level when you also feel connected with your head coach.  In the first half of Richt's tenure, being a Dawg fan was so great not only because of the success, but because of who the coach was that brought the success.  I have taken a large measure of pride in having a man with Richt's character at the helm, and I think that sentiment is shared by most Dawg fans.  Goff & Donnan were never able to reach that connection that with the fans, but even with our lack of success the past few years, I still feel that connection with the idea of Richt as my head coach.

Please prove all the doubters wrong, Coach, we're rooting for you.  And so are all those people you'll be able to help in the future.

-Rev.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Offbeat News Week In Review

This was actually a pretty slow week as far as news in college football, but here's a little roundup of some off-the-beaten-path things you might have missed:

  • Derek Dooley gives a nice surprise to a couple of kids who have worked hard.  This is something coaches do on a pretty regular basis, but I still like reading these kinds of stories, even if it is with the Vols.
  • A guy with disciplinary issues looking to transfer to Miami.  If you saw the "30 for 30" ESPN special on Miami, that will seem entirely appropriate.
  • George O'Leary experiences a different type of hotseat.  Really sad story, with a fair amount of "he said, she said".
  • If you thought "emerging from an alley" was offensive, don't read this article about the parking habits of UNC football players.  Seriously, Greg Little........93 parking tickets under 9 different license plates?  
  • For a program claiming they did nothing wrong, I find it interesting that Oregon has gone and hired the guy who is always hired when a program has done something wrong.
Hope everyone has a pleasant weekend.

-Rev.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Thursday For You, Friday For Me



I'm going to do the Friday Special today instead of tomorrow because today is technically my Friday and I'll be on vaycay for the weekend (and really because Rev doesn't want me drinking & posting. Those PUIs are hell to defend in front of the probate judge).



Anyway, I did end up seeing Green Lantern last weekend. It was...well, eh. It was OK. Good effects, but let's face it: Green Lantern is a lame superhero. He doesn't have the gravitas (big word for all you Alabama readers) of Batman, Superman, etc., but he does have some nifty powers. That being said, he's more of a Robin. I paid $7.50 to see a Robin movie and this saddens me.



On the rental front, I saw The Adjustment Bureau (Matt Damon flick) & Cedar Rapids (starring Ed Helms from The Office). AB is a good movie. I generally despise all sci-fi flicks, but this one was done really well and Emily Blunt was an enticing piece of eye candy to enjoy, also. As for CR, the best parts are in the previews, but it's still a good movie. Ed Helms spends way too much time in his tighty whities for my taste, but the always stellar John C. Reilly made this one a winner for me. He's in his tighty whities too much, too, but I forgive him.



On the music front, I checked out Corey Smith's new album release "The Broken Record" when it came out this past Tuesday. It's good, but you can tell he's trying to make a studio album and not going for what brought him to the dance. Can't say I blame him, but the edginess is gone. He's the new version of Pat Green. Pat Green was the Texas version of Corey Smith, but he took his act to country radio and they changed him to a girly man. His stuff is just run of the mill now. I hope Mr. Smith isn't on that same path, but it looks like he's headed that way as he is now classified as "country" and was at the CMT Music Festival (I wonder if he ran into Kenny Chesney after that musical bitch slap he put on him a few years ago with "If That's Country I'll Kiss Your Ass"). Anyway, the album is good, but it contains a lot of retreads such as "Twenty One" (really good as he re-wrote the ending as a man in his mid-30's and not some twentysomething single man), "If I Could Do It Again", "Carolina", "Maybe Next Year' (a bit cleaner...see where we're headed?), "Something To Lose", and "Backroad" (a.k.a the road head song; I can't believe it made it on the album). I didn't really care for the new songs on there, but did download the title track onto my iPod. It's really good. Anyway, if you want to check out what he's been going through as he's trying to go mainstream, visit his website as he goes into a lot of detail about the struggle to get there.



There's nothing worth a poo on TV right now since the NBA playoffs are over and I loathe summertime reality TV. Well, that's not entirely true as, full disclosure here, I was sitting in the den last year while my wife was watching some train wreck called The Real Housewives of New Jersey and I absolutely could not turn away...for the rest of the season. I've taken a gander at the other versions, but they aren't good. This one is just like watching the women of The Sopranos go at it for an hour. It's fantastic. Judge me if you want, hate me if you must, I don't care.



Enjoy your weekend, fellow readers. Onward & upward.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Let the Big Dawg Eat!

(h/t Blutarsky)
Big John Jenkins...6'4"...340lbs...that's a Gator tail in his hand.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Strength & Conditioning Gets Stronger

Tony Gilbert is back with the Red & Black:

Gilbert becomes the sixth full-time member of the ever-expanding strength staff. He joins director Joe Tereshinski, John Kasay Sr., Keith Gray, Thomas Brown and Rex Bradberry. Also assisting in the weight room as they attend classes at UGA are NFL veterans Kendrell Bell and Verron Haynes. All but Gray and Bradberry are Georgia football lettermen.

T. Kyle King makes the point that maybe so many in-house hires isn't a good thing, which is an understandable viewpoint. Sometimes you need some fresh blood to shake things up. But I loved Gilbert as a player. He was not the most physically gifted linebacker we've had, but nobody outworked him, and that's the mentality that we need now.

PWD also touches on the need for an outsider's perspective, and neatly summarizes the recent deficiencies in the program.

What I am definitely excited about is the commitment that the program is making to the Strength & Conditioning program. It does, however, beg the question....yeah, but what took so long? There's been way too much drag-assing the last few years, for lack of a better term. But as LC said a couple of weeks ago, at least Richt has made the needed changes now, even if it took him forever to get there. I'm not quite as optimistic as LC is about the upcoming season, but I do share the sentiment that we are at least back on the right track. And I like bringing in guys like Gilbert, he will earn the respect of the players quickly and be able to assist Coach T. in teaching the guys what it takes in the offseason to be successful during the season.

-Rev.

What Type of Fan Are You?




The walls of this cubicle are closing in and as I glance to my left at the nifty SEC helmet schedule, I notice something else closing in, too: kickoff time.



This got me to looking forward to not just the games. Oh, no. It got me looking forward to tailgating, viewing parties, and smack talk. Having said that, I think we all know, work with, are related to, etc. different types of fans. This can be a good thing, but it can also be a bad thing.



What type of fan are you? Every year I have to remind certain people as I enter the season that I am "cautiously optimistic". I've delved into "certain pessimism" these past 2 years, but I honest to God thing we're on the cusp of turning the corner. I credit 3 things: the arrival of Todd Grantham (the change in D and the fiery attitude he brings), JT2 taking over the S&C program (I present to the jury Exhibit A: the booting of one Washaun Ealey because he wanted to half ass it), and the apparent change in attitude in Coach Richt.



Granted, with all the changes we've made and all the new talent coming in, we might not see the best results until next year, but I do think we're in store for something special this year.



Back to my original question, what type of fan are you? I categorize fans the following ways:




  • The Deranged/Delusional Fan that, no matter the previous record or current talent level or schedule, thinks this is the year: Also known as the This Is The Year Fan. Most South Carolina Gamecock fans fall into this category and good God if the sportswriters in Columbia aren't following suit. This is the fan that gets laughed at while at work as he spews this madness, but you don't wait until he leaves to laugh. You do it in his face...IN HIS FACE!



  • The "I Can Dish It Out, But I Can't Take It" Fan: See: Tech, Georgia.



  • The Damn The Past, We're Good This Year Fan: This was Auburn last year. Good God, I've never been so appalled at such tacky behavior. A little background for you: my family is 75% AU. I have 2 uncles and both are AU alums. Their kids went to AU. One of their kids married a former AU O-lineman. The family is awash in ernge and blue. This never bothered me nor did I ever root against them (except when they were playing us, obviously) until last year. I quacked my ass off during the BCS title game. Anyway, the whole Scam Newton fiasco got louder and louder the better he played and the more they won. After they played us last year and watching Fairley's antics along with his handler, Trooper "Beat Cop" Taylor, I wanted a bench-clearing brawl that would have left the bastards strewn about and result in massive suspensions on our part due to the carnage. My days of rooting for AU are over. I will join Simple Man on the hate train. Toot x 2, Weagles.



  • The Loves the Camaraderie Fan: This is me. I can co-mingle with other fan bases as long as everyone understands the barbs are for fun. I've tailgated with Cocks at a SC game in Athens before. I've encountered 1 or 2 friendly Gators at the World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party before that invited me into their RV to use their latrine (I didn't flush out of pure spite). I've even been invited the last few years to tailgate at a Bama game (and damn sure will just because of the host's reputation and generosity). I cannot, tho, handle being around obnoxious asshats that take every dig personally and are ready to throw down when everyone else is enjoying themselves.



  • The Sh*t Talker No Matter The Record Fan: I saw one of these at the UK game in Lexington last year. It was beyond comical. I don't give a damn how good your basketball team is or was, you need to shut the hell up about football. OMG.


There are already murmurs out of Tuscaloosa that the Tide are back on track. There are whispers of a potent offense out of Columbia. The loudest vibes I hear are that the Dawgs of Athens are ready to put the nation on notice and Boise State is in the cross hairs.



Why yes, I will take some more Kool-Aid. Thank you very little.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

My Father, A Damn Good Dawg

I am a man of relatively few passions in life, which I guess is normal. Obviously, considering the majority of the content on this blog, one of my passions is college football. The other passion in my life is my family. So given that today is Father's Day, I thought it would be appropriate to combine the two, and talk about my Dad's influence on my love for football.

Pretty much everyone who knows me is aware of my love for the Dawgs, but that's not where my love of football started. As far back as I can remember, I have loved football, but it all started with the mighty Golden Bears of Griffin High School (my high school alma mater). When I was a kid back in the 80's, Griffin was a perennial powerhouse in the state, and I absolutely LOVED going to the games. Dad was always willing to oblige, and grabbed tickets whenever he could to take me. He was patient with my zillions of questions on why the players did this, why the players did that, and taught me the game at a very young age. He also had to bear with my rabid desire to stay until the final whistle blew, no matter how cold it was, even though the games were often times decided before the 4th quarter even started.

The funny thing though is that it's not the games themselves that were my favorite part. My absolute favorite memories are from walking to and from the games, just the two of us. Of course at the high school level, it's not like you're having to walk THAT far from where you parked, but those are the moments that are most vivid in my memory. Walking to the stadium, I loved the sound of the drumline playing, feeling the energy of the crowd, and us talking about how we thought the Bears were going to do. Then, after the games, the walk back to the car consisted of our post game analysis....or at least me asking even more questions, and Dad patiently giving even more answers. I'll always treasure that one-on-one time more than he knows.

As I got a little older and started enjoying watching football on TV, Dad and I shared that as well. I primarily played soccer growing up (my love of football kinda scared my mom when I was little, she didn't want her poor, fragile little son to get hurt, so I was ushered into soccer where I still ended up with a laundry list of injuries), but whenever we weren't out at soccer games on Saturdays, Dad and I were usually watching college football. Of course we always watched the Dawgs, but would also watch whatever other big games were on. Then on Sundays we would watch the Falcons games together, even though we pretty much always knew that they would lose.

Dad would even find ways to use football to teach me life lessons. I'll never forget in 1987 when #10 Notre Dame was visiting the Orange Bowl to play #2 Miami. I was 10 years old at the time, and for some reason I decided that it was a certainty that Notre Dame was going to pull the upset, and I bet my Dad $10 on Notre Dame winning. Dad took the bet, and Miami promptly waxed them 24-0. Dad made me honor the bet, and told me that he hoped it taught me a lesson on gambling. I know $10 doesn't sound like much, but when you are 10 years old, that is a LOT of money. I certainly learned the lesson, and have never wagered money on an athletic event since. I have seen what gambling has done to people I know, and know now that losing that $10 may have actually saved me a lot of money down the road.

Dad and I have always connected well on many levels, but something about when we discuss football has always been an especially intimate connection for me. We've been going to the UGA games together a good bit the past 5 years or so, and I still LOVE our walks back to the car together after the games. We typically take a shuttle to the games, but the shuttles are too long of a wait after the game, so we walk about a mile to get back to the tailgating area when he has also parked there with my tailgating crew. That gives plenty of time for analysis, griping about the playcalling, and solving all of the Dawgs' problems.......you know, if only Richt and the coaching staff would ever ask us. And it still brings back those same feelings from when we used to walk to and from the Griffin High games. Even though we're surrounded by people, sometimes it feels like it's only the two of us, just walking and talking in our own little red & black world.

It's been really cool the past few years seeing my Dad go through a bit of a renaissance with his love for UGA football. He went to school there, and went to games all the time when he was younger. I came along pretty shortly after he and mom finished school though, and they pretty much sacrificed all their free time to give me and my siblings all the time we wanted for our extracurricular activities. We always had something to do on the weekends, and to the best of my memory, I can't recall him going to any of the UGA games when I was growing up. Even when I was at UGA, my siblings were in middle school and high school, so weekends were tied up. Then I lived in Florida for 5 years, before relocating to the Greenville, SC area 6 years ago. Once that happened though, Dad and I started going to the games together, and it's been a blast. We've had season tickets for the past 5 years, and were even at the Dome together for both of the SEC Championships we've won under Richt. Now that I have kids, I'm the one who can't make it to all the games, but Dad is at every home game unless there is a major conflict, and Mom is with him at most of the games that I don't attend. It's obvious how much he enjoys attending the games, and I'm pretty sure that one day he'll be one of those little 80 year old guys you see still coming to the games, still giving everything they've got to root the Dawgs on to victory. Seeing him and mom get to go and do all the things they couldn't do when we were kids is such a great thing, because they literally sacrificed all of their free time for us when we were kids.

Happy Father's Day, Dad, I love you. Thanks for everything you've ever done, if I tried to do a post on all the ways you've influenced me, I'd be typing for days. But I hope you enjoyed this post on the football side of our relationship.

And Happy Father's Day to any applicable readers of the blog out there. I hope today is a special one for all of you.

-Rev.








Saturday, June 18, 2011

The Slippery Slope

Sorry for the lack of posting this week, it was one doozy of a week at work, leaving me in a near zombie state by the time I got home each night. You know how you cover for a co-worker when they go on vacation, and everything that can go wrong with their part of the job not only goes wrong, but in totally imaginative ways you never could have conceived? Yep, that was my life the last 5 days. But I've had this post rattling around in my mind for a little while now, just haven't had the time to sit down and bang it out.

The question that is burning in my mind is.......has college football peaked? I'm not talking about the performance of the players on the field, but rather the popularity and passion of the fans. Throughout the last 2 decades, it's seemed like college football has gotten bigger every year, and even when the Dawgs have had down years, I've still enjoyed the heck out of every season as a whole. If you look at the money that ABC/ESPN and Fox are throwing at the conferences right now, it's clear that they perceive interest in the sport to be at an all time high. But how much longer can this go on with all the scandals and bad press going on? I'm apparently not the only one who has had this rattling around in my head recently:

  1. The great Paul Westerdawg, of whom the 3 of us contributors here are huge fans, says that the NCAA needs its own version of Frank Abagnale, Jr.
  2. Ivan Maisel says things aren't as bad as they were in the SMU days, but acknowledges that the reputation of the game is suffering.
  3. Even Mark Emmert says things are at a "crossroads".
I have always been a passionate football fan, literally ever since I can remember (I have a post scheduled to go up tomorrow that will explore that a little more fully). And like I mentioned above, even when the Dawgs are down, I have always enjoyed every season as a whole. But last year was very different......I can remember emailing with LC, SimpleMan, and regular commenter here Reeder3:16 right after the BCS title game about how glad I was for the season to be over. For the first time ever, I didn't even make it through the title game, I fell asleep in the middle of the third quarter, and only woke up at the very end. It didn't feel like a coronation to a great run by 2 excellent teams, it felt more like a mercy killing for that cess-pool of a season. And that's not just a shot at the two teams that were playing in the title game, though they certainly contributed heavily to the feeling. But it's a shot at Southern Cal, a shot at what was at that point the new revelations about Ohio State, a shot at UNC and their lengthy list of suspensions........and yes, a shot at the AJ Green jersey-gate saga. The season started badly with scandals, got worse over time, and even after the season the pace hasn't slowed at all. If even half of the rumors going around right now are true about schools that are currently being investigated, then what we've seen so far is only the tip of iceberg.

I mentioned earlier the money that TV is throwing at the schools and conferences right now. Add in the money that the apparel companies throw in, wealthy boosters, and shady agents, and we're talking about exorbitant sums of money. Regardless of the organization, time has proven over and over that when money and success are plentiful, complacency and/or corruption aren't far behind. When Mike Slive took over as the SEC commissioner, he was taking over a conference that had taken a pretty good beating for out of control athletic departments. He came in wielding a big stick, and put standards in place to make sure that the conference became probation-free. Contrast that with some of his recent decisions since the SEC has started winning the national title year after year, and it seems like the focus has become more on continuing that streak than enforcing the rules. As they say though, you reap what you sow, and I'm afraid the SEC is going to be taking some pretty heavy blows in the next year or so.

Speaking at least for myself, I think the 2011 season will be a real litmus test for my passion for the game. I always look forward to the start of the season, but I think I'm looking forward to it for a different reason this year. For me, it's to see how much I enjoy it all again. Was last season just a blip, or the beginning of a trend? I guess I'll know on Jan 9th, 2012, if I'm asleep before it all ends.

-Rev.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Happy Friday






Greetings, all. The Reverend axed me if I'd consider doing a Friday column that focused on the entertainment side of life, i.e. new movies, music, TV, whiskey, etc. Being that I am a noted connoisseur of those guilty pleasures, here goes nothing...or something, depending on your perception.


I am a big (B I G) movie fan, but those trips have been few and far between the past couple of years. My wife could care less about going to the movies anymore and since we've had our 2 kids, the solo trips for me have been dwindling faster than Mr. Weiner's followers on Twitter.


However, I have been taking up any and all opportunities to take my kids to the kid-friendly flicks since they are both of age (she is 5 and he is 3, although sometimes he acts like he's 3 months...but it is what it is). While Disney, PIXAR, etc. flicks can be entertaining, they can also be mind numbing. Luckily, my son is a HUGE superhero fan. This summer has a nice spate of comic book adaptations to drool over: X-Men: First Class (one of the best origin stories I've ever seen), Green Lantern, Thor (eye-popping effects and sets things up nicely for next summer's The Avengers movie), and Captain America: The First Avenger. For my annual Father's Day trip to the theater, we'll be partaking of Green Lantern. It looks more like eye candy (special effects for the men and Ryan Reynolds for the ladies...and a few men) than anything else, but I'm looking forward to it.

As this particular feature is in it's infancy, I'll be previewing movies I want to see and once I see it, I'll post a brief (for me) review about it.


Having said that, I saw The Hangover 2 a couple of weeks ago. It's definitely worth seeing, but can't touch the original. That's not necessarily a bad thing since the original, IMHO, is a re-watchable classic. (Speaking of, I term a movie re-watchable if it meets 2 points of criteria: you have to purchase it once it comes out and when you run across it on one of the movie channels, you can't turn the channel for any reason whatsoever. The #1 movie with re-watchability for me is GoodFellas. Good God, I love that movie.) So, if you have time to go see it, go see it. It's definitely worth it.


On the rental front, we've been tearing those up as of late for the reasons I stated above. The last few of note were True Grit (good, but Jeff Bridges' mumbling became tedious after a while); The Rite (a special effects-driven exorcism flick that we've seen 1000 times); The Company Men (really, really good movie about corporate greed and the after-effects of layoffs during the economic downturn); Hall Pass (forgettable, but has once signature Farrelly Brothers scene that had me howling); Blue Valentine (if I had been listening to Vince Gill while watching it, the Rev, SimpleMan & Reeder 3:16 would have been posting about being my pallbearers; downer from hell). That's all of the rentals for now. I'll post about some more next week.


As for music, I have 2 tastes: traditional country (not the cousin-fornicating kind from the 50's & 60's, but the 80's & 90's style; I abhor the new country style) and southern rock, which I don't think is even recorded anymore unless you count Zac Brown Band as southern rock, and I do. Anything George Strait does is pure gold and his new single "Here For a Good Time" is another winner. That pretty much means that I won't be reviewing anything much on the music front unless it's his or Corey Smith's...and speaking of Mr. Smith, his new album/CD/download releases 6/21. I'll be reviewing that one next week, then.


As for whiskey, I am a Jack Daniel's man. While not brand new, their relatively new brand Jack Honey is phenomenal. Smooth enough to drink straight, but near perfection mixed w/ Ginger Ale. Rev has asked me to not post on here while under the influence of said drinks, but I will violate the hell out of that request if the Dawgs open the season 0-2...and I have a feeling I won't be the only one venting under the influence.


That's all for now, readers. TGIF and enjoy your weekend.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Murray’s 2nd and Murray’s #1

Going back to my traditional stance on things, I really like the fact that we still run a pro-style offense and actually trust our QB enough to make some reads and our offense doesn’t have to act like 12 year olds looking over to the coach every 5 seconds. Of course if we change to a spread and win a championship, this post will get deleted.

It got me thinking about our QB’s and maybe what to expect this coming season. It’s hard to see some of the numbers these other schools are putting up on offense and the QB position and not be a little disappointed that we haven’t had that one year of just sick stats.

Here are some interesting numbers of the bigger named QB’s CMR has coached over the years. I’m mainly looking at how they progress from year 1 to year 2.

Weinke

Ward

Greene

Stafford

For comparison sake, AM’s first year

If he improves on those numbers, it could be a huge year for him (prediction). Of course, he doesn’t have AJ for half a season and the running game is unknown. And I still think our play calling has a lot of room for improvement……..and no, I’m not smarter than CMR or Bobo but I understand football.

I would just like to see our red zone offense improve (Field Goal U) and see a few new plays added each year and even between games. I’m pretty sure if I know what play is coming next, so does the defense. I mean we have our QB do one pump fake a year and it works, maybe we try it a couple more times. And why does everyone else seem to run a successful wheel route. A really good team always seems to have that “go to” call on short yardage and I don’t think the FB dive is the best option for us.

(Quick play side note: I’ve never understood why a team doesn’t prepare for a late game short yardage quick snap. So if it’s 3rd and 7 and you get 6, the ball gets set and the QB yells something like fire and everyone runs up for a quick QB sneak. No way a defense would be set for that. It just seems like a common situation that I never see anyone try. Maybe at least get the D to burn a TO)

Matter of Importance




Think before you answer, but which game is more important in terms of the Dawgs' fortunes this season: beating Boise State in the season opener or beating South Carolina in the SEC opener?


This (among other topics) was thoroughly explored in the College Football Zealots Roundtable recently and after reading their answers, I certainly changed mine (I picked SC because it was a conference game, but failed to take into consideration the effect a loss to Boise would have).



What say ye, fellow Dawg fans?

Drinking the Maroon Kool-Aid

More like Moron Kool-Aid.
It's stuff like this that gives the Cocks the perennial title of "the most delusional fan base in the nation".

I'm becoming more and more excited about the showdown Between the Hedges on the 10th of September.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Abolishing Kickoffs

As I'm sure you've all heard by now, Greg Schiano proposed eliminating kickoffs this week as a way to improve safety in the game. Seth has a nice summary of the concept here. My first reaction was that this was a ridiculous idea. However, the more I've read about it, the more it makes sense. From what I've gathered reading in various places, kickoffs account for roughly 6% of a team's total plays on average. However, since 1977, injuries on kickoffs have accounted for about 14% of the "catastrophic" injuries injuries that have occurred (many of those leading to paralysis). I wasn't able to find anything showing a year-by-year analysis, but it would make logical sense to me if that trend has actually been on an upward line. The players covering kicks today are bigger, faster, and stronger than they were in 1977 (unless they're coached by Jon Fabris, but that's another story), so by the laws of physics would be hitting harder. At least on a punt, the tacklers have blockers running side by side with them down the field who can slow the tackler's momentum before they make a hit. The one statistic I really tried to find, but couldn't, is what percentage of "catastrophic" injuries occurred on punts. I wish I could find that in order to make an apples-to-apples comparison - let me know if anyone can find that stat. But on the surface, this change makes a lot of sense for safety.

Where I have a problem with the change is that regardless of the distance selected for the 4th down play (Schiano suggests 4th & 15), it provides a HUGE advantage to the kicking team in one area: automatic first down penalties. On a kickoff, there is absolutely nothing the receiving team can do that would result in the kicking team automatically keeping the ball. The kicking team either has to recover an onsides kick or create & recover a fumble to keep the ball. However, if you go to this model using punts, where it is treated like a 4th down, there are multiple scenarios where the offense would get to keep the ball without really having done anything.

  1. Receiving team tries to block the punt, and ends up roughing the kicker (which sometimes is a TERRIBLE call by the refs, due to the acting job by the punters)
  2. Kicking team decides not to punt, but to go for it. Defender gets too aggressive and roughs the QB
  3. Kicking team decides to go for it, and one of the guys in the secondary gets called for defensive holding
  4. Kicking team decides to go for it, and a defensive facemask occurs
In all of these cases, the flag would result in an automatic first down for the "kicking" team, but it's not any ordinary first down. Put another way, in this scenario, the result of the penalty really isn't an automatic first down, the result of the penalty is a successful onsides for the other team, a result not even possible from a penalty on a kickoff. There is a big difference between those two - and it seems overly punitive to the receiving team and overly generous to the kicking team in that scenario. Yet if you do away with the "automatic" first down, you run the risk of giving the receiving team the greenlight to come after the punter or QB with all of hell's fury.

My suggestion, you ask? Oh, you didn't ask........well, I'll tell you anyway. If the model of using a punt instead of kickoffs is adopted, then penalties on the receiving team in "kickoff" situations that on normal downs would result in an automatic first down, would result in a 4th and short scenario (either 4th and 1, or 4th and 2). This way, the defense still receives a significant punishment, and the offense receives a significant reward. But the offense will still have to earn the first down on the subsequent down if they still elect to go for it. If the defense commits another penalty on the subsequent down, then sorry guys, first down for the offense. I can't forgive 2 consecutive penalties.

What are your thoughts? Do you like my suggestion? Do you think Schiano's entire idea is for sissies? Do you have any other ideas to improve safety for the players on kickoffs?

QCUKJ3F8CK3G

-Rev

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Thursday Football.......Y or N

Being that today is a Thursday and football is always on the brain, I thought I would bring the concept of playing football on Thursday's to the people.

Let me start by saying that I love Thursday night football. I mean why not, you can't possibly watch all the games on a Saturday, so break them up during the week. I think it's really smart after a bye week, it gives you extra days twice. Having said that, I love the fact that we have never played on a Thursday (not going to look through bowl games).

Maybe I'm just being all high and mighty but I really like traditions, I don't like changing uniform colors/designs and I don't like playing on any day but Saturday. I've always held the belief that we don't need gimmicks to beat you. I want to simply be better than you. Don't get me wrong, blackout game 1 was AWESOME but that was all taken away by Bama later.

So I'm asking you, how do you feel about UGA playing on Thursdays?
A) Leave it to the scrubs
B) Change with the times old man and plan a *Happy Hour Tailgate (trademark)
C) Who cares, football is football

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Maurice Clarett Weighs In (No, not on the scale)

I thought that SimpleMan was a little over the top with the cynicism in his post Tuesday, and even emailed him to tell him so. Then he forwarded an interesting link to me today (he wasn't able to post today, so I asked if I could take it and run with it). After reading this interview with Clarett, I see that maybe SimpleMan wasn't just being the grouchy old codger who likes to yell at the neighborhood kids to stay off his lawn. Maybe he was just keeping it real up in this place.
"Clarett said that players from the inner city aren’t prepared for college. They’ve never seen anyone succeed in an academics so it doesn’t mean anything to them. “Guys in inner cities only believe what they see,” Clarett said. He said it’s a culture problem."
Now if I were a football player (I'm not), I'm not sure Clarett is the guy I'd want as my spokesperson. But what he's saying rings true and backs up a lot of what SimpleMan was saying, that there are many football players out there who in all actuality don't belong in college, based on their academic preparation. The system is broken, and has been for a long time. The scandals we are seeing have been going in college football for years. The difference is that now you have Facebook, Twitter, cell phones everywhere with cameras on them, text messages, email, TMZ, etc........things that could be kept quiet indefinitely even just 10-15 years ago will now eventually come to light, and it will happen sooner than later.

But when it comes down to it, what alternatives to the current system are there? The only real alternative I have seen thrown out there is for someone to start what would essentially be a farm league for the NFL. But there are so many reasons that this is not a viable option, it's hard to cover them all in one post. Just for starters though, it would have to be HEAVILY subsidized, because there simply would not be enough opportunities to make money. I live in the Greenville, SC area and our local baseball farm team plays over 70 home games a year. That's over 70 opportunities to sell peanuts and cracker jacks to the fan base. So you don't have to pull huge crowds to any one game, because you're going to make your money over time. But you can't put a football player through that type of grind. You're going to get 6 or 7 home games a year, just like college football. So if you can't pull 60,000+ fans to a game, you're going to lose a lot of money. And no farm team is ever going to pull those kinds of crowds. Fans aren't going to feel the same attachment to a farm team as they do to their favorite school. And due to that lack of enthusiasm, you can forget about TV contracts bringing in any significant money either. The ONLY organization out there that could pull this off is the NFL, and I guarantee you they have no interest in starting something they will have to subsidize, when the current college system already serves the same purpose as a farm league, but for free. There are plenty of other reasons it wouldn't work, but since everything always boils down to money anyway, I don't see a reason to expound much further.

So the only option that leaves is somehow reforming the current system within the NCAA framework. And this is where every option I consider brings up conflicting feelings. There's no doubt that I feel the players are being exploited to a certain degree when you look at the type of money that's involved. The explosion of everything like coaches' salaries, tv revenues, bowl payouts, etc since the early 90's has increased the level of benefits for everyone involved.....you know, except for the players. Yes, the players receive the benefits of having nicer facilities and things like that, but having a bigger weight room and a really sweet locker doesn't make it easier to pay your rent that month. So when I see a suggestion like allowing the players to sell autographed memorabilia through approved channels that can be controlled, part of me immediately loves the idea. But then there's the idealist side of me that loves the idea of true amateurism - playing the game for the love of the game. And at what point does the line between pro and amateur get blurred beyond the point of recognition? I actually like the idea of full cost scholarships that has recently been floated by the Big Ten and SEC commissioners, but I don't see how that can ever be passed. To allow it for only certain sports would have to create all sorts of legal issues, but trying to do it for all sports would bankrupt a lot of athletic departments - many of whom are already hanging on by a thread.

The winds of change are already beginning to blow when it comes to the welfare of players. The publicity given to oversigning this year couldn't have been predicted even just a couple of years ago. And when coaches start putting out there that they're willing to give up their own money to help the players, you know the debate is only beginning. Yes, that was ultimately a cheap publicity stunt by Spurrier, but he carries enough weight that it will still push the discussion forward. Whether it be the full cost scholarship or some other vehicle, SimpleMan is right that things need to change to allow the players to see some more benefits, but it needs to be done without totally compromising the idea of being an amateur. I do not have the answers - but there's enough really smart people involved that they should be able to come up with SOMETHING better than what we have today.

-Rev

Where There's Smoke, There's Usually Fire


Interesting.....(h/t ECDawg)


Then the follow up from VegasSnitch:


I don't know much about who the "VegasSnitch" group is, but this could be a very interesting development to watch.

-Rev

Do You Believe in Mark Richt?

This has been on my mind since the end of last season and has resurfaced given what's going on at Ohio State (giggle) & USC (shocker!) and I thought I'd put up a little sumptin' sumptin' after Rev's post on the subject: do you believe in Mark Richt? Do you believe he is the guy to return us to glory? Here are my thoughts:


  1. I believe in Mark Richt's values and the fact he's going to do the right thing for his team. We won't be going thru anything remotely similar to OSUCKS & USCUM (sorry, couldn't resist) as long as he's at the helm. It took him waaaay too long to shake up his staff, but at least he did it. I know it can't be easy to fire people, especially your best man in your wedding, but he's paid handsomly to do the right thing concerning the staff and the roster, so I don't feel too much sympathy in that regard. It goes with the job. From what I'm gathering from speaking engagements (his edge and how he verbally bitch slapped the immortal Ealey at every stop), he knows what the hell he's doing, OK?

  2. It's been said numerous times that the CEO that gets a company in the ditch normally won't be the one driving it out, but will he be the exception to the rule given the wholesale changes he's made?

  3. The fact that 3 of the greatest (some would just call them the most talented) players in Bulldog history (Stafford, Moreno, & Green) came thru here without ever playing for the SEC championship is unnerving. The staff changes have been made, so maybe the next wave of studs (Murray, Crowell?, Jenkins?, & Drew?) will get us there.

  4. Doing things the right way won't always get you the glory and the accolades, but how in the name of Allah can a guy like Mark Richt NOT finish first? How can he NOT lead a team to the BCS championship? We're delving dangerously close to religion here and I can hear the "choir boy" chants already, so I'll stop.

  5. We're seeing Spurrier stick with the 2nd coming of Kenny Stabler because he gives them the best chance to win (we've REALLY got to beat that ass now). We saw AU go all in with Scam Newton (USC 2.0) and win the whole shebang. The point I'm getting at is Richt cut a gun-slinging QB (Mettenberger) due to his indescretions, regardless of the fact that the boys mama worked in the AD office and our leading rusher because he's a selfish bonehead. There aren't too many coaches that would do that. I damn sure know Urban Meyer wouldn't. You're a bad guy, Urban, and it is a big deal.

In closing, I want Mark Richt to be the guy that gets us back to glory. I want to believe that he will be the guy. If he's not, we went all in on a great guy that just couldn't get it done. No shame in that.

And The Waves Keep Coming

Wow, another big news day in college football yesterday. Last year all the talk was about realignment at this time, but clearly scandals continue to be the hot topic right now. ECDawg pretty well summarizes the Terrell Pryor situation here. Note the paragraph he put in bold at the end from the article he is quoting. The hole that Ohio State has dug for themselves appears to be getting deeper every day. Even Chris Spielman is expecting severe penalties. So much for having a throwaway year this year, then hiring Urban Meyer or some other big name in to restore them to glory next year. If the Buckeyes really do get USC-type sanctions, why would a big name want to jump onto their bandwagon anytime in the next 3-4 years? Ohio State may be better off removing the "interim" tag and giving Fickell a 4 year contract, with a low buyout. Let him be the sacrificial lamb for the next few years. Then, when their sanctions are complete, Ohio State will have their pick of the litter for their next coach. Basically, Fickell will be their Mike Shula. Oh yeah, and before moving off of Ohio State, the Senator has a similar post to what SimpleMan put up yesterday, but looking at it from an Ohio State perspective instead of USC. It's an interesting line of thought, whether it's all worth it or not - and there's not an easy answer.

The other big news was the resignation of Tennessee's AD Mike Hamilton. Pretty much everyone in the media has been saying that Hamilton should step down for the past few months, so this is not a huge shock. However, it's still a big deal, because it shows how much disarray has gone on in the UT athletic dept (Speaking of disarray, you guys following this WVU madness? Holy cow, I don't care anything about the Big East, but that's a train wreck you just can't HELP but watch). Which got me thinking that Richt really needs to get us on the right track, starting right now. We probably won't see the SEC East this weak again for at least another 10 years. Tennessee's issues are well chronicled - and I think that Derek Dooley ultimately will end up being UT's version of Mike Shula. He'll steady the ship, but it will be the guy who comes in after him in a few years that will return the Vols to glory. Florida has new coaches on both sides of the ball, with totally new schemes. We saw how much it took for our defense to adjust last year - imagine if our offense was having to adjust to new schemes too. But in the next 2-3 years, UF will be back quickly, so this is the year to kick them while they're down. South Carolina is a very solid club, but nothing like the elite teams we're used to seeing come out of the SEC East. Kentucky can play with anybody, but also lose to anybody. And Vandy, well, do I really need to elaborate?

I mentioned in my last post that I don't think we have the potential to be a great team this year, and I stick by that. However, you won't have to be great to win the SEC East this year. I anticipate the winner of the division having a record along the lines of 9-3 or 8-4. So we don't have to be great, we just have to be pretty good to have a real shot at taking the division title. But that title would mean the world for our program right now. It would give the younger players a taste of success, and hopefully give them the drive to pursue higher goals. It would give Richt stability. It would tell the recruits that we're still relevant, and continue the momentum of this year's Dream Team success.

I'm still not 100% convinced that Richt will be able to overcome the stagnation that has set in on the program the past few seasons. But I really hope he does - not just because I want the Dawgs to do well, but because I genuinely want Richt to be the guy that leads us there. Richt has proven that he is as good a "person" as you can find to be your head coach --- now he just needs to prove that he's still the right "coach" to be our head coach. The staff changes he's made (defensive staff, and Strength & Conditioning) were both made a year later than they should have been made, but I hope it's not too late for Richt to recover. He's got to bring results, and he can't ask for a better schedule to prove his worth than what he's got this fall.

-Rev.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

USC <> BCS

By now, everyone has heard about the BCS taking away USC's 2004 championship. This brings up the question, who cares. The NCAA and BCS are the biggest jokes in sports, even more than FIFA or the IOC:
"The IOC and FIFA have learnt a great deal from each other," he said, also noting their collaboration within the Olympic Movement on "a number of important issues around the world all for the betterment of sport".

Will any of us forget that USC destroyed Oklahoma in the championship or that Auburn was an undefeated SEC team that didn't get a chance to play for a title. I'll leave the playoff discussion for another day (I will go off for hours).

In the same situation, would you be okay with your school winning a title with "ineligible" players and having said title revoked years later. Would you be ashamed or still proud. Would you try to justify it somehow. I honestly don't think I would care, 20 years from now, I think people will remember the title more than the scandal.

It will be interesting listening to Auburn people talk about how they should be awarded the 2004 title now in the same sentence they defend Cam as being eligible. Can't we all agree that Auburn will be going through this exact same thing in the next 5-8 years.

Don't get me wrong, I'm sure Herschel got paid but I don't really care, we won a title and should have won 2 others. Look in mirror and join me saying, "win a title at all cost".........hey, I'm just being honest.


Monday, June 6, 2011

Roll On, Tiders

I can't decide which is worse, poisoning trees or doing this to one's hand...
Stay classy, Tiders.

Dream Team Arrives

It's a big week for the football team this week, as the "Dream Team" makes its arrival on campus. I am not normally one who gets too hyped up about freshman arrivals, because normally true freshmen not named Matt Stafford or AJ Green do not end up making a huge impact for us in that first year.........and the ones that do usually don't get a lot of playing time until at least the midpoint of the season, if not later (guys like Rennie Curran jump to mind). But this year's freshman class is going to be pivotal to the team's success this year. Outside of Crowell and Jenkins, I don't think a lot of them will end up as starters, but they are going to be relied on for much needed depth at almost all positions.

While the quality of our starting 22 has taken a dip the past couple of years, the real area where we have been deficient is in our depth. Go back and look at some of the YouTube videos from the middle of the last decade. Here's one timely one to get you started, and you can find plenty more from there. When you watch some of those clips, we had playmakers backing up playmakers, especially on defense. It seemed like it didn't matter who the coaches put out there, as a fan you knew they would get the job done. I didn't even appreciate it at the time, but after watching us the past couple of years, then going back and watching some of these clips, it's like two different programs.

I think we have the opportunity to have a very good season. I'm more excited about our defense than I've been in years - on paper, our front seven looks like it has the potential to be scary. And while the secondary is still suspect, it's amazing how much better any secondary will look when the boys up front are wreaking havoc on the quarterback. But the SEC schedule is a grind. Players get banged up every week and wear down if they're not being rested properly. That's where our Dream Teamers come in. If the coaches can put them on the field without being concerned about a big dropoff in performance, then this team goes from good to REALLY good (I don't think we have the potential to be "great", but do think we can be "really good" this year).

Here's hoping that all the kids buy into the remainder of the Strength & Conditioning offseason schedule (give 'em hell, Coach T!). Here's hoping that the veterans welcome the youngsters, take them under their wings, and do everything they can to build them up. Here's hoping the youngsters come in with swagger, but also respect for what the older players are trying to teach them. And here's hoping that all the players will be pushing in the same direction at the same time this year --- it seems like it's been a while since we've seen that.

-Rev.

Just Short

The baseball team got beat in the regionals (sort of like losing between the first and second rounds of the NCAA basketball tourney) and the golf team lost a close match play finals against in-state foe Augusta State (defending champs). So another second place finish. Great season and just a little short.

For those that don't follow, our men's golf team is a little like the Braves in the 90's. One of the best teams every year but usually falls a little short. I would have compared them to Georgia Tech baseball but at least we've won a title. It's a tough sport to win because of how individual the sport is and turning that into a multi-day team event is difficult.

So congrats to both teams for successful seasons. Men's golf was only a few holes away from a National Title and baseball is considered a success based on last season's disaster.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Key Issues Not Addressed

While the changes that were announced yesterday by the SEC regarding roster management initially give a positive impression, I have to agree with Jeff Schultz that it doesn't have the teeth that Slive and the school presidents would have you believe:

"According to the rules, if a coach has 18 scholarship openings he can still sign 25 kids, then massage the numbers over a certain period, coerce kids into quitting or taking a “grayshirt” — postponing going on scholarship — or working some medical hardship magic (albeit, the SEC will have some oversight now). In the end, the coach gets the 18 players on the roster he wants and other seven are dropped into a black hole."
You can't just look at numbers in a 4 year window, because most players take a redshirt year. So if they play out their full eligibility, then they are occupying a scholarship for 5 years. According to these new rules, a coach can still sign 125 players in a rolling 5 year period. In order to be under the cap of 85 scholarships, he will have to have lost 40 players from the previous 5 years. Is it realistic to expect that to occur completely with natural attrition? I have to think not. In any given year, you're probably going to have 15-20 graduates, and another 2-3 transfers. It's also fair to think that you'll have 1 or 2 of your signees per year who will not qualify academically, and depending on the quality of your program, another 2-3 players on average leaving early for the NFL. So we're still talking about 10-15 extra players that have to be accounted for through "roster management". THAT is where the gray area comes into play, and the SEC chose not to address that gray area.

I don't claim to speak for my cohorts here at OLI, but in my mind, oversigning should be measured on a total scholarship cap, not a yearly scholarship cap. Coaches should be required to provide documentation on how many current scholarships they have committed to existing players at least 2 weeks before signing day - and that data should be made available in a public forum. Subtract that number from 85, then add 3, and that's how many players you are allowed to sign. Yes, I am in favor of a small amount of oversigning. Between signing day and kickoff of the following season, programs typically lose at least 3 players to transfers, medical issues, academic eligibility, etc. So I believe it is prudent to allow a minimal amount of oversigning - up to 3 on your total amount of scholarships available. But I'd add one more step - if you choose to oversign, then you must have an equal number of your signees for that year sign written documentation that they acknowledge the real chance that there will not be a spot for them in the fall if the expected attrition does not occur (this would be a standard form across the NCAA, to prevent schools from inserting their own creative language). And should it happen that the coach ends up short a spot or two, the only players he can choose to grayshirt would be ones who had been given that documentation, so there's no chance for a bait & switch.

So if you have 17 scholarships available, and you sign 20 players that year, at least 3 of them have to have been provided the written documentation described above. Now some coaches would get around this by making it a policy to provide that written documentation to every recruit that they sign. But I'm not sure that that would necessarily be a bad thing, because it would at least force the conversation with the recruits and raise awareness. Plus, schools that DON'T force every recruit to sign those would arguably receive a bit of a leg up in recruiting.

I don't know what Slive's ultimate goal is with roster management. I don't know if he is satisfied with what was passed this week, or if it is just the first step in tightening the belt. I get the sense that it is more of the former than the latter, but we will see. Though the yearly cap of 25 isn't perfect, it's still better than a cap of 28, because a cap of 28 gives yet another 15 student athletes that have to be accounted for in a 5 year period. The rules passed this week are a step in the right direction, I just hope Slive and the school presidents will take another step or two in that direction in the next few years.

-Rev.