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Sprints Doesn't Want Robert Khayat Doing His Annual Evaluation // 06.23.09

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Play Ball! LSU defeats Texas, 7-6, in an 11-inning thriller to take a 1-0 lead in the championship round of the College World Series. Or, as new SBN blog Arkansas Expats might put it, Hitler lost. The second game is tonight at 7 p.m. ET on ESPN.

Terry Bowden is back in the news? Really? As someone who was a young Auburn fan but barely remembers most of Terry Bowden's games, my enduring image of him will be the way John Saunders seemed intent on getting as far away from Bowden as possible. Never before have I seen an anchor so obviously and physically uncomfortable with the presence of his analyst.

We will see how much more comfortable Gene Chizik is with the verbal embrace of Bowden, who is asking critics to lay off the much-criticized new Tigers coach.

"Gene Chizik could not be any more unusual a hire than me from Samford," Bowden said. "That little 36-year-old I-AA coach, to take over for Pat Dye, who was one of the top icons in this state, and they hired a little ole guy from Samford." ...

"Just when you think Alabama's on a roll, Auburn wins," Bowden said.

"Just when you think Auburn's on a roll, Alabama wins. So don't be shocked if Gene Chizik ..."

He didn't finish that sentence.

Apparently because he does have a few surviving brain cells.

Holly perfectly sums up how ludicrous this is over at the Doc's place.

You heard it here first, Tiger fans. How hard can resurrecting a reeling program with two separate baffling, unpopular hires in consecutive decades be? The stars are aligned, a Bowden has spoken and Alabama just got put back on probation. It's 1993 all over again!

As good as that is, though, it misses one of the major fallacies in Bowden's statement -- namely, that there was at least some reason to think that a head coach who had, say, won football games and almost won a national title might win some at Auburn. Chizik's only head coaching record, at any level, is 5-19.

Still, Bowden's voice might carry some weight at his old school, right?

After the jump: More coaching "evaluations," Jones vs. Green, recruiting by number

'So that's why I never got Employee of the Month.' Ole Miss Chancellor Robert Khayat was remarkably restrained when talking with Athlon about the football coaches who served under him.

"David Cutcliffe’s last two years we virtually had no recruiting, no signing of people who could play," Khayat says. "It was pretty natural to go for the person who was viewed as the best recruiter in the country. What we didn’t realize was that Ed was going to have so much difficulty coaching."

I'm assuming neither Cutcliffe nor Orgeron will be using Khayat for a reference in the future. (HT: EDSBS)

Wise -- or careful? Peyton Manning weighs in on Boy Wonder, coming to largely the same conclusion we here at Team Speed Kills have: Give it time.

"My answer now is ask me in two years. I'll tell you how we did in the draft. I think it's kind of that same way (with Kiffin)." ...

"To be fair to Coach Kiffin, everybody is making a judgment either one way or the other already," Manning said. "I think we need to let Tennessee play some games this year and maybe not just necessarily this year. I know it's a long offseason and it's more time to talk and analyze."

Of course, it's much more fun the other way. It's interesting to note the difference in tone between Bowden on the one hand and Manning on the other. Neither has much to gain or lose; both are likely to be regarded by their former fan bases just the same, no matter what. But Manning is being far more careful than he could be. No one would blame a proud alum for saying something, you know, a bit glowing about Kiffin.

Julio Jones or A.J. Green -- who ya got? Roll Bama Roll delves into the question of why Julio Jones gets more hype than A.J. Green, despite their similar yardage numbers and Green's two-to-one advantage in terms of TDs. One of the main, and most compelling, reasons: Jones was more important to his team.

Though Green led the team in receiving yards, Massaquoi actually led the team in number of receptions and tied Green for # of receiving TDs with 8.  Meanwhile, no one on the Tide's roster came close to touching Julio's production from a # of receptions or receiving yards standpoint.

Watch out, RBR. Nick Saban might accuse you of trying to chase off WR recruits by making them think Jones will get all the catches the next few years.

Nothing to add. Sometimes, life writes the punchline for you. Miami's evaluation of recruits under Larry Coker is a good example of that.

While counterparts were out scouring the country for the next All-American, the Hurricanes coaches were likely parked in front of a computer with a pad and pen. They surfed Internet recruiting sites in search of talent, almost forgetting their own evaluation in the process. ...

"That's accurate," UM recruiting coordinator Clint Hurtt said. "We spent way too much time recruiting off [Internet] lists and finding these top guys instead of truly evaluating. You can't just go off hearsay or just because Florida, Florida State or Alabama is recruiting him. That doesn't mean a thing."

Now, as David Cutcliffe will tell you, bring in "highly touted" recruits is important. (See: Item, above.) But doing that without making any effort to evaluate the kids yourself? "Stunning" comes to mind.

But the numbers make my eyes bleed. More math than anyone should be exposed to, but the upshot of Rocky Top Talk's number-crunching experiment is: There are very slim odds that a school would take the PR hit of having three football alums caught up in separate drunk-driving incidents leading to fatalities. Correlation! Causation! Well, not quite.

But how strong is this evidence? Honestly, it's really shaky. Again, there's that problem of scale. For a program to have just one alum in this category renders the program as an outlier because the probabilities are so astronomically low. ...

The statistics, by themselves, are not a link between UT and DUI fatalities. The link is found after the stats tell you that there may be something work investigating.

Players. Several pieces of roster/depth chart news. A Sea of Blue takes a look at where Jodie Meeks might go in today's NBA Draft, saying the "best guess" puts him "in the last three picks of the first round or the first five picks of the second." South Carolina tinkers a little bit with its football depth chart. The Joe Cribbs Car Wash takes a look at five Auburn players who will in 2009 "definitely make a move one way or the other, either coming closer to the top of the depth chart heap or leave themselves with an even more difficult climb." And Tennessee freshman RB Toney Williams is out for the 2009 season with a torn ACL.

The hopefulness of Gamecocks fans. I am familiar with South Carolina fans' tragic and comedic relationship with hope, and Garnet and Black Attack doesn't let us down in a preview of the Ole Miss game. At least Gamecock Man admits it.

Prediction: Gamecocks by a field goal

P. S. This prediction has homer written all over it; expect this game to be brutally tough to win.

This Gamecock fan hopes he is right. There's that word again.

Wind Sprints. Bobby Johnson is headed to the Furman University Athletics Hall of Fame. He ought to be in another one before it's over ... 3SIB finds a black Tennessee jersey and hopes it's not made for the field. If so, they really ought to wear it against Alabama, because that worked so well for Georgia ... The ACC & SEC Blog floats Ten Questions for 2009 ...