Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The Works, I'm glad you brought it up-style

Thanks. I make it a point not to mention the reprehensible Alabama media personality whose name sounds like Schmaul Schmineschmaum. But occasionally I do enjoy a good discussion of why Schmineschmaum is, in fact, one of the signs of the decline of Western Civilization we know him to be, and so, yes, I enjoyed this wonderfully sarcastic Dr. Saturday post on the cult of SEC coaching personalities and the "absolute power" supposedly wielded by the likes of Meyer and our favorite Coachbot. Admittedly, a large part of that enjoyment came from this picture:

but also this take on the difference in Schmineschmaum's "overheated rhetoric" vs. the saner parts of the country:
I can't imagine any columnist in any other region of the country writing anything in this vein, or conceiving of it, because nowhere else would anyone take off-the-cuff, generic comments so seriously. In April.
The fanaticism of the SEC fan is, for the most part, a force for good--college football never rises to its proper real-life-operas-in-plastic-armor-and-grass-stains transcendence without it or something like it, right? But that doesn't mean there's not a down side when it also gives rise to the Schmineschmaums and comment sections of the world.

DocSat's post also linked up this first-person account of what it's like in press conferences on the Saban beat. Very much worth a read, and no, it will not shatter your preconceptions about King Crimson's ego.

Well, that kinda sucks. The news on the recruiting front took a minor turn for the worse this week when defensive line targets J.C. Copeland and Craig Sanders committed to Tennessee and Alabama, respectively. Despite Sanders offering some praise for the Limo Gambit a little while back, I don't think his decision to head towards T-Town is entirely unexpected. Copeland may be a different story--he's from LaGrange and named Auburn his leader just a few days ago. So it goes.

Also noteworthy is that Copeland's commitment triggered a response that Tennessee--stop me if you've heard this one before--no, seriously, stop me--self-reported to the NCAA as a secondary violation.

You too, huh? Dan Mullen, as I'm sure you've noticed, got his Urban Meyer on yesterday:
We don't need to make national headlines to recruit," Mullen said Monday. "Taking our budget, instead of buying fancy limos, we're gonna maybe get more sneakers for our players.

"I want to get more gear and more good things for our players instead of having coaches drive around in style all the time.

"I'm more into getting stuff for the players than getting stuff for the coaches."
So Mullen is admitting that his players aren't already getting the best equipment possible or aren't as well-supplied as they could be, but Auburn's supposed to be the ones embarrassed, right, right. Whatever. As Chizik's players probably already have all the shoes they need already, I think he'll sleep just fine spending his recruiting budget on putting better players in those particular shoes.

Oh, and so much for sympathy for Mullen's potential difficulties down in Starkville, huh? Not that it matters, I guess.

Billings update. Chizik's state tour hit Anniston Monday, giving Luke Brietzke a chance to ask him about the Montez Billings situation. His response:
"We're still kind of reviewing that, and there's some things we have to do NCAA-wise right now to make sure that everything is going to work out, but we feel very confident at this point that it's going to happen," Chizik said.
That confidence contrasts sharply with the quotes from Taylor Brietzke provides, which sound like a coach who's resigned to Billings not being available. Here's to hoping Chizik's optimism is justified.

Beisbol. Auburn's going the Immediate Help route on the mound--not that you can blame them--by signing their sixth pitcher of their recruiting class this week, one of several incoming JUCOs. PPL has more information, a look at Auburn's early postseason honors--including second-team All-SEC for Joseph Sanders and a cool community service award for one senior--and a bunch of other stuff right hyah.

SEC whatnot. Not that anyone still really needed any convincing that Sly Croom's State tenure was anything more than a protracted exercise in wheel-spinning, but Year2 has you covered in case you did. Money graf:
His biggest problem was trying to run a West Coast Offense in college. The only programs that can make that work are those with elite talent who can handle the complexity in the relatively small amount of practice time. If you try to run a complicated scheme like that without much talent, you will fail. Even after four years of terrible offense, Croom was still swearing by the West Coast before the 2008 season, showing that he's not aware of one definition of insanity.
Elsewhere, it's another Dr. Saturday post arguing that Mark Richt is one of the "coaches who will win championships" even if he doesn't have a crystal football already. But I have to wonder if Richt has lost just a wee bit off his fastball: remember the six-game SEC East losing streak between 2006 and 2007? That ended with the hot streak to end '07, but those big wins were over teams that were either a little bit overrated or a lot overrated in retrospect (Florida, Auburn, Hawaii), and as gaudy as the Dawgs' record was last year they weren't as good as they seemed. And now expectations are as low as they've been in a while. It's probably just a bump in the road and by 2010 everything will be back to normal ... but I have to wonder.

Etc. A rundown of some of the administrative tumult in the Auburn A.D. from Evan Woodbery ... Cool story: Jacksonville St.'s coach didn't even watch the softball NCAA selection show after they'd missed out on an automatic berth, and then they turned around and won their regional ... Jim Gray once asked blind Cleveland Cavaliers owner Gordon Gund what Lebron James "looked like."

No comments: