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Sprints Learns to Never Underestimate the Audacity of Lane Kiffin // 08.17.09

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Team Speed Kills Now returns tomorrow. The time is the usual 9 p.m. ET / 8 p.m. CT. This week: More on non-conference foes, including Virginia Tech's game against Alabama, N.C. State taking on South Carolina and the mid-majors most likely to pull an upset. (And maybe more.)

Pot, meet kettle. It would be hard for anything Boy Wonder says now to literally stun me. But it's not often that you see something so shamelessly hypocritical.

Kiffin said he "could care less" about Florida offensive lineman Matt Patchan calling the first-year Tennessee coach a "bozo", but said that's not acceptable for his players.

"I talk to our players a lot about the media," Kiffin said Saturday. "I would hope our players would never say something like that."

Habahaba -- wha? Are you serious?

Kiffin has made some bulletin-board comments. He mistakenly accused Florida coach Urban Meyer of cheating, was reprimanded by the SEC and later apologized. However, Kiffin views name calling a bit different.

"I don't think I've ever said anything like that," Kiffin said, referring to the "bozo" comment.

So if Patchan had called Kiffin a cheater, that would have been fine? How about "coward"? Because that's generally a good word for someone who can dish it out but can't take it.

Or maybe Lane Kiffin will take this opportunity to reflect on his actions and see that words can sting when used to attack someone.

Ah, who am I kidding?

Stayin' up late
Your humble correspondent has never been one to go to bed before midnight, especially on the weekends, but some might grumble at "late night" SEC games. You can blame CBS and its "exclusive" 3:30 p.m. ET time slot for that. 

Rocky Top Talk: Crompton will be your Tennessee QB
They're taking it quite well. Journeying to a land where unicorns run free to do so, but taking it quite well.

They recognize it, too
philipvu94 of fine Vanderbilt blog Save the Sheild.

The way we won games last year, often getting outgained but winning anyway, is not sustainable in the long run.

The Dores best hope that Bobby Johnson catches onto this more quickly than Sylvester Croom.

Is it better to leave camp tough or alive?
That's the question faced by basically every team. Georgia and Tennessee go with "tough," South Carolina goes with "alive."

Since Spurrier arrived at USC before the 2005 season, the Gamecocks have left preseason drills mostly healthy. Tailback Bobby Wallace (broken collarbone) and receiver Joe Hills (sprained knee) were injured during the '07 camp, although Hills' was a freakish injury caused when he ran into the hedges beyond the end zone going after a pass.

Freshman defensive end Ronald Byrd went down with a season-ending knee injury this week in the Gamecocks' first scrimmage. Otherwise, USC's only injuries have been the usual assortment of pulled groins and jammed shoulders.

It would be nice to see some sort of actual study done about this, instead of relying on anecdotes, but science presumably has more pressing priorities.

Perhaps the key to South Carolina's season
To say that Spurrier's offenses have underperformed is to oversimplify. The problem last year, in particular, was the running game. Eric Wolford is tasked with fixing it.

Spurrier is better than Woody & Bo
That's the headline for The Post and Courier column from Gene Sapakoff. It's quite a claim, when you consider just how good Woody Hayes and Bo Schembechler were. I will give Sapakoff this much -- Spurrier was far more innovative than Woody Hayes. Of course, Lloyd Carr was more innovative than Woody Hayes.

This is why it's hard to build an SEC dynasty
It could be a long 2010 for the Florida Gators.

Based on NFL Draft research and conversations with people inside and outside the Florida locker room, the Gators will lose anywhere from 12-15 starters for 2010, and perhaps as many as 21 players from the two-deep roster.

Of course, you already know the seniors won’t be here. The Gators will graduate 14 seniors from the two-deep, eight of whom are starters (most notably Brandon Spikes and that Tebow guy.)

This is one of the reasons it will be difficult for anyone to replicate what someone like Bryant did, or even for Urban Meyer to have another four-year stretch like he's already had. It's not just losing players like Tebow that hurts. It's losing half your team. The question is whether there will be a brief rebuilding/reloading process, as there was in 2007, or something a bit more protracted based on just how much Florida loses this time around.

This idiocy again?
There's still talk of making some unsportsmanlike conduct penalties live-ball fouls. This is so stupid it's hard to believe that even the NCAA would consider it. Again: The penalty is already bad enough when celebrating too much, which can hurt absolutely no one, is punished just as harshly as a face mask or a horse-collar tackle, which can most assuredly injure someone.

We want the (the players) to play with enthusiasm and celebrate with their teammates and enjoy the game. The line gets crossed when there's taunting and inciting.

That line isn't always clear, as some of the more egregious of these "penalties" has shown. And since it's done in the heat of the moment, Rogers Redding's belief that "the sense is it would stop it in a heartbeat" is staggeringly naive or willfully ignorant. (HT: Blutarsky)

If nothing else, they deserve each other
I'm not going to define a school's rivals for it, but I have always wondered if other Georgia fans are as enamored of the rivalry with Clemson as the Mayor is. He pulls no punches in defending this hatred from an offending Georgia Tech fan.

The analogies employed by this particular Georgia Tech fan are as inapt as they are inept, as ought to be apparent to anyone who attended a liberal arts institution that taught critical thinking instead of a trade school that taught how to fix stuff. ...

Accordingly, for the benefit of clueless fans like our friend from Georgia Tech who know as little about the rivalry between the Athenians and the South Carolinians as they know about the difference between your and you’re, here is a brief quiz that ought to illustrate the sheer idiocy of this message-board mouth-breather’s snotty and preposterous claim that no rivalry exists along the stretch of I-85 running from the Classic City to Lake Hartwell ...

Far be it for me to spare Clemson from anyone's hatred, but we have to play the cow-tippers every year, and I tend to see most rivalries as an annual thing.

Rumors of his demise are greatly exaggerated
Phil Fulmer will be part of CBS College Sports' coverage of SEC football. Credit the Tennessean reporter who noted this.

The first game will be the Tennessee-Florida game on Sept. 19.

Suddenly, I wish I had CBSCSN. Watching Fulmer decide whether he wants to slam Meyer or Kiffin more severely would be priceless.

Wilson's career over
Florida's Paul Wilson apparently isn't built for football. Good luck to him in future endeavors.

Stafford not a stranger to dropped passes
That appears to be experience he'll need to draw on in his rookie stint with the Detroit Lions this year.

Moreno's first NFL game cut short
He's hurt but seems to be on track for the regular season.

A basketball item?
John Calipari starts to try to heal the wounds of the last few years of Kentucky basketball. You wonder how much the racial polarization -- and his seeming unawareness of it -- hurt Gillispie.

But how many stars did he get?
Just when I was starting to believe that the recruiting services were worth something. Hysterical.

Nice story
Not really SEC-related, but still worth a read.