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Sprints // 02.19.09

Yeah, it's a daily thing now. And, yes, I'm still researching for a few posts.

SEC baseball begins Friday. Which means the comprehensive season review will be up -- well, Friday, of course. What, you expect me to actually do things promptly? Before I have to? You're obviously one of our new readers. In any case, the Opening Day slate:

Southeast Missouri at No. 21 Alabama
Washington State at No. 22 Arkansas
Elon at Auburn
No. 23 Louisville at Florida
Youngstown State at No. 14 Georgia
Kentucky vs. Troy
Villanova at No. 2 LSU
No. 6 Ole Miss vs. Liberty
Northern Illinois at Mississippi State
No. 25 Oregon State at Tennessee
Vanderbilt at No. 15 Stanford

If you have Cox Sports Television, you can actually watch Villanova-LSU at 8 p.m. Otherwise, check your local box score.

Nothing of too much importance here, other than the debut of conference favorite LSU and SEC East darling Georgia, whose game will be "a freshman showcase," according to Georgia Sports Blog. It might kind of odd for the only-football-oriented among us to see a Vanderbilt-Stanford game with Top 25 implications, but there you have it. South Carolina hosts Duquesne on Saturday to start the Gamecocks season and open Carolina Stadium.

The should-read of the day: AA on Carl Johnson (II). Alligator Army returns to the Carl Johnson saga, but goes far beyond Johnson and focuses on how to prevent things like this from happening instead of simply tsk tsk-ing when they do.

Most universities take the health of their students very seriously. This includes mental health. At Florida, any student has the option of seeing a psychiatrist free of charge. This option is fairly well known and students take advantage of it. Some of them are not willing to do it, but are better off for it. Athletes often reject these services or never consider them, leaving "normies" as the only students who can benefit from this service.

C&F once took a professor's suggestion to set up a counseling meeting because C&F was having trouble getting to bed at a decent hour, causing him to sleep in and take naps that too frequently carried over into class time. Unfortunately, C&F napped through the counseling appointment. (True story, which I supposed explains why I'm up at 1 a.m. writing this.)

In all seriousness, though, there's no reason for the stigma associated with counseling, and it might take an order from a higher-up to get these athletes to get help if they need it. The problem is with classes and practice and everything else on a player's plate -- is a coach going to want his players to go through this? It shouldn't matter, but I can guarantee you it will.

That's a nice housewarming gift. A new coach -- or new to the SEC, anyway -- will win basketball coach of the year, The State declares. Their case is fairly strong. C&F doesn't watch much basketball, but he knows that Darrin Horn has done a great job and Trent Johnson has made LSU the only SEC team to even sniff the Top 25 on a regular basis this year, so it's not surprising that one of those two names will end up taking home the COTY award.

What's left: Can you do that? Ole Miss' recruiting class ranks No. 7, according to Andy Staples. That would be their 2006 class, now that it's been "re-ranked." ... South Carolina WR Kenny McKinley is looking to prove wrong those who question his toughness. He also wants to learn to run without "relying on his legs." Good luck with that. ... And our worthy cause of the day is Hey Jenny Slater's new proposal, which should be called "Plunk a Pundit," but it's his deal, so let him name it. If he hasn't already heard of Ron Morris, he's going to. ...