Great stats from, um, Statistically Speaking
There's too much in the post to do it justice, but a few things:
- South Carolina's record of close conference wins doesn't really tell us anything;
- Jonathan Crompton wasn't quite as good a comeback story as you thought;
- Vanderbilt had five offensive touchdowns last year -- five!
- The SEC might be catching up to Gus Malzahn;
- Mississippi State improved their offense more dramatically last year than you realize.
Good stuff on each SEC team. Go read! (HT: Blutarsky)
Ideally, you should have decided that by now
I'm not going to try to tell Urban Meyer or Teryl Austin how to coach their football team, in part because I'm completely unqualified to do so. But I would think it a negative to have not decided what your base defense is less than a month before the season begins.
Defensive coordinator Teryl Austin, who came to the program from the Arizona Cardinals in February, said he has an idea of where the defense is headed, but it could take another week or so of training camp to finalize the plan.
"I think we’re going to mix in whatever we need," Austin said. "We’ll probably mix in a little bit of both. ...
"If it is getting into some 3-4, then it’s getting in 3-4. If it means staying in 4-3 and letting our guys hunt off the edge, that’s what we’re going to do."
Maybe a compromise -- a 3.5-3.5? Ah, well, it seems Florida did not recruit any half-linebackers for this class. See, those recruiting stars really don't tell you anything.
Saying all the right things
"I was just happy to have that opportunity and to get this chance, and thankful to Ole Miss, the athletics director and the chancellor for giving me my last chance," Masoli told reporters during media day. "I understand that and I'm determined to do everything with it."
Not that I would expect many people to take the statement at face value -- there are going to be doubts when your last chance is at least your third. We will see soon enough.
So when the new part of the stadium collapses, we'll know why
You would think building codes would prevent Alabama's south end-zone renovation from being built by Auburn graduates, but you would be wrong. Watch your step.
The danger of watch lists
I know, your favorite player on your team is on an award watch list. And here's why you should be no more than cautiously optimistic: Stephen Garcia, Maxwell watch listee.
Mal Moore won't say much about Michigan game
In fact, he won't really say anything at all.
"We've talked about several teams," Alabama athletics director Mal Moore said this morning, "but nothing's done."
So there you don't have it.
Mark Ingram back in camp
Thoughts and prayers to his family on the loss of his grandfather.
Secret Agent Men: This is why you don't talk to the press during investigations
Oh, if only NFL agent Gary Wichard -- whose relationship with North Carolina assistant John Blake is now one of the focuses of the NCAA investigation -- had listened. Or known that reporters don't usually ask very specific questions without a reason for it.
In a 92-minute telephone interview, Wichard repeatedly questioned why the NCAA would be looking into his relationship with Blake. Asked if Blake had ever been a Pro Tect employee, Wichard repeatedly stated that he hadn’t.
"No, no, no, no," Wichard said. "John lived [in California] after he was the head coach at Oklahoma. He lived out in [Los Angeles]. We’ve socialized. We’ve been friends. His son is my godson. It has nothing to do with that. He hasn’t worked for me at all. I don’t get where that is coming from."
Where on earth could it have possibly come from? Well ...
However, Wichard’s statements about Blake never having been employed by his agency appear to contradict a Pro Tect Management brochure obtained by Yahoo! Sports.
Prepared for prospective clients, the brochure contains multiple pictures of players, including a handful who were selected as recently as the 2001 draft. The inner cover features large photos of both Wichard and Blake. Under Blake’s picture, his title is listed as "Vice President/Football Operations."
Wichard's excuse is essentially that he was lying then -- the brochure is "absolutely meaningless" -- and you should believe him now. Oh, and UNC also ought to love this part:
Wichard said he assumed Balmer had paid for Austin to travel to California, and also to work out at Proactive. ...
If Balmer paid for Austin or other former teammates at North Carolina to travel and train at Proactive, it would likely constitute an NCAA violation.
There's not that much in the story for SEC fans watching Agentgate unfold, but it looks very much like this year could be an interesting one for Tar Heel fans.
But will it lead to any national championships?
The Rivalry Esq. will at some point today become Off Tackle Empire.