Will Bama get relief from scheduling problem?

 It’s Friday which means the floor is open for discussion on any topic you choose, football or non-football. Here are some random thoughts to get the party started. You input is welcomed:

**–I’m not sure the SEC is going to be able to do a whole lot to give Alabama some relief from a huge scheduling hiccup. In case you missed it, Alabama is not very happy with its SEC football schedule for 2010 and with good reason. Alabama’s last six conference opponents, beginning on Oct. 9 against South Carolina, will all play the Crimson Tide after an open date. How does that happen? Actually it’s easier than you might think.

The SEC office puts together the conference part of the schedule and that process begins with several fixed points. Examples: Tennessee and Florida play the third Saturday in September; Tennessee and Alabama play the third or fourth Saturday in October; Georgia and Florida meet in Jacksonville on either the last Saturday in October or the first in November; Georgia, Florida, and South Carolina have rivalry games that must be played on the Saturday after Thanksgiving.

There are a number of principles that go into setting a schedule such as a team should never have to play more than two straight conference games on the road. But the SEC did not have a principle that limited the number of games a team will play after that opponent had an open date. It will in the future and the number will be three.

The fact is at this late date the SEC may be able to move around some non-conference games but those will have a domino effect. It’s just difficult.

Also look for the SEC to discuss using a computer program to formulate their schedules in the future. The ACC does it by taking all of the games and all of the scheduling principles and putting them into a computer. The SEC does not currently use a computer to set its schedule.

 

**–Who didn’t see this coming? South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier told ESPN.com’s Chris Low this week that he was going to start calling the ball plays again next season. Spurrier, set to begin his sixth season in Columbia, started handing off play calling and other offensive duties to his son, Steve., Jr., and other assistants a couple of years ago. Spurrier told me last year that he thought that he needed to delegate more. “I was sitting in the offensive staff meeting one day and I was drawing up all the plays and the other guys were just watching,” he said. “I thought I needed to take on more of a traditional head coach role.”

But there is nothing traditional about Spurrier and, while he was at Florida (1990-2001) proved to be one of the best play callers in the history of the game. So he should go back to calling the plays. But he should also crack the whip and demand that his offensive line play better and develop a running game. South Carolina gave up 27 sacks last season and was again last in the SEC in rushing. If that part of the team doesn’t get better it won’t matter who’s calling the plays.

 

**–When I was at Florida two weeks ago offensive coordinator Steve Addazio told me that without Tim Tebow the 2010 offense “would probably look a lot like 2006.” That’s the year that Chris Leak was the senior quarterback in a traditional, drop back passing offense. The wrinkle came when Tebow, a freshman, would enter the game on short yardage situations to pick up the first down. This season John Brantley will fill the Chris Leak role.

“We’ll have to come up with something else on third and short because I sure won’t be running it,” Brantley told me.

Looks like freshman quarterback Trey Burton and tight end Jordan Reed will get those snaps.

 In 2006 the two-quarterback system worked pretty well at Florida as the Gators won the national championship.

But how well will it work? Last season Florida was seventh nationally in third down conversion percentage at 49.15 percent.

 

**–While looking up that stat I noticed that with all of the other offensive superlatives it had last season, Georgia Tech was No. 2 nationally in third down conversion percentage. Georgia Tech had 199 third downs and converted 104 for 52.26 percent. Only BYU was better at 55.62 percent.

**–I also learned that third down conversion percentage might be overrated as a stat. Florida was No. 7 but that was the only SEC team in the top 50. Alabama, the national champion, was 62. The rest of the SEC’s ratings were Ole Miss (51), Auburn (57), Tennessee (59), Georgia (61), Kentucky (67), LSU (71), South Carolina (77) and Vanderbilt (91). Arkansas and Mississippi State tied at 104.

**–I can’t say I’m surprised to read that Nick Stephens, the only quarterback at Tennessee with any real experience, is going to transfer in order to find a place to play in his final year of eligibility. Stephens started six games in 2008 but then could not beat out Jonathan Crompton when head coach Lane Kiffin arrived in 2009. The assumption was that Stephens would be the guy under new head coach Derek Dooley, who retained offensive coordinator Jim Chaney from the previous staff.

But when I visited Knoxville on my spring football tour I talked to some folks who had strong doubts about whether or not Stephens would be Tennessee’s every down quarterback 2010. JUCO transfer Matt Simms and incoming freshman Tyler Bray have looked better in practice and were starting to take more reps with the first team. You would think that a veteran player like Stephens would go through the entire spring practice and then make a decision on his future. He obviously saw the handwriting on the wall.

 So Stephens will transfer to a Division I-AA program where he can play immediately and Tennessee continues to deal with the inevitable attrition of the post Lane Kiffin experiment. And it’s probably not over yet.

I wrote a couple of weeks ago that this would probably be a tough season at Tennessee. I haven’t changed my mind about that,

 

Have a great weekend.

 

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www.twitter.com/MrCFB

270 comments Add your comment

All Jealous

April 9th, 2010
1:03 pm

well said 5IML, I used to live in the Sh!t hole town of Auburn, ” Bear Bryant aint coming back” is right about one thing, the hillbillies in Auburn do consist of inbreds. I moved because of that smell that the locals kept saying was the agriculture and cows around there, turned out it was that oh so highly intelligent student body just stunk!

Gatorzip74

April 9th, 2010
1:03 pm

RxDawg

April 9th, 2010
11:20 am
“Georgia will lose to SC, UF, AUB and maybe Tech. Not a bad year for the Dogs. ”

That’s not a bad year? Sorry, but we have different standards than our crimson counterparts apparently

You’re right, that’s a normal year!

Tide Rising

April 9th, 2010
1:03 pm

murfdawg,

Georgia did not have the same scheduling “situation” a couple of years ago. Since 2007 Bama has played 16 opponents coming off a bye week. LSU was 2nd with 5.

In 2008 no sec opponent took their bye week before playing the dogs according to the 2008 sec composite grid. In 2007 only UT took their bye before playing the dogs. Not sure where you get your info from but its very wrong. In 2009 only 1 sec team took a bye before playing UGA.

Cracker Jacket

April 9th, 2010
1:04 pm

Has any Alabama football player other than Forrest Gump graduated with a degree???????

Tuscaloosa offers great views of trailer parks

April 9th, 2010
1:05 pm

“I moved because of that smell that the locals kept saying was the agriculture and cows around there, turned out it was that oh so highly intelligent student body just stunk!”

Great! You sound like my kind of inbred monkey man! I can sell ya a cheap used trailer for $100. Comes with an outhouse and plenty of grits! I can throw in a curling iron for your mullet.

Tuscaloosa offers great views of trailer parks

April 9th, 2010
1:06 pm

“Has any Alabama football player other than Forrest Gump graduated with a degree???????”

Good question. I think their degrees are handed out on toilet paper these days.

Tuscaloosa offers great views of trailer parks

April 9th, 2010
1:07 pm

Cracker Jacket

Bama grads go onto to work in fields such as truck drivers, porta john cleaners, maids and waste management.

5IML

April 9th, 2010
1:08 pm

Tony,

I know China has had some successful with blocking internet communications. Is it possible for the AJC to give it a try, too? I propose we block this blog for anyone outside the southeast. The blatant jealousy on display here today is embarrassing me, as a Southerner.

BG

April 9th, 2010
1:08 pm

UGA plays 11 games straight without an off week.

Tuscaloosa offers great views of trailer parks

April 9th, 2010
1:09 pm

“I propose we block this blog for anyone outside the southeast. The blatant jealousy on display here today is embarrassing me, as a Southerner.”

Awe, a poor little Bama fan can’t handle any criticism of her schoooooo!!!!

ChuckWDawg

April 9th, 2010
1:10 pm

Georgia didn’t get any sympathy for playing a brutally tough schedule last year. Any gripes about it were justifiably criticized as whining. Alabama chose to play Penn State on their on volition. So there’s no point it complaining about that. Regardless, they open with San Jose State, play Duke in week three, have an open date prior to their crucual clash with LSU and play Georgia State – yes Georgia STATE – the week before the Auburn game. Just tee it up and play ball Saban. The schedule is no excuse.

Nick Saban

April 9th, 2010
1:10 pm

I can’t hardly wait to whip the Gators a** again.

Tide Rising

April 9th, 2010
1:11 pm

Cracker Jacket,

It might interest you to know that during the bowl season Bama led the nation with the number of players who had already graduated and were working on a 2nd degree. I guess you never let the facts get in the way of your argument.

Alabama led the nation with 13 graduates on its roster during the 2009 regular season. Boston College and Virginia Tech were next with 10 each. Auburn was tied for fifth with eight.

Alabama was the only team among the top 12 on that list to reach a BCS bowl game.

Go inside the numbers, and they look even more impressive because they’re not overpopulated with scholarship players who stick around because they’re scholars, not players.

McElroy graduated magna cum laude with a GPA of 3.86, and he did it in three years — while trying to learn the offensive schemes of three different coordinators: Dave Rader, Major Applewhite and Jim McElwain.

Other starters who earned their degrees before the season began: Linebacker Eryk Anders, tackle Drew Davis, punter P.J. Fitzgerald, guard Mike Johnson, linebacker Cory Reamer, snapper Brian Selman and defensive end Lorenzo Washington.

The nine players who finished their degrees this fall include these starters: Cornerback Javier Arenas, defensive end Brandon Deaderick, fullback Baron Huber, cornerback Marquis Johnson, tight end Colin Peek and kicker Leigh Tiffin.

Add it up, and 14 Alabama players who could start in the BCS Championship Game will be college graduates. And it’s only a matter of time before other starters, like unanimous All-Americans Ingram and Rolando McClain, get their degrees.

Want more?

Alabama set a national record with six first-team AP All-Americans. Three of them — Arenas, Johnson and Tiffin — are graduates.

It makes headlines to scoff at the three days of school Alabama has canceled because of the championship game.

The real story is all the classes the Alabama football players have passed while building a championship team.

Coach Mike Price

April 9th, 2010
1:11 pm

Alabama gave me the chance to sleep with strippers!!!

Coach Mike Price

April 9th, 2010
1:13 pm

“Bama led the nation with the number of players who had already graduated and were working on a 2nd degree.”

Degrees such as pottery making, jogging, fantasy football, booger picking and jock strap cleaning.

Coach Mike Price

April 9th, 2010
1:14 pm

“McElroy graduated magna cum laude with a GPA of 3.86, and he did it in three years….with the help of paying his professors, other kids doing his homework and Nick Saban turning a blind eye.”

Coach Mike Price

April 9th, 2010
1:15 pm

The real story is all the classes the Alabama football players have passed while building a championship team……while paying people off.

Tide Rising

April 9th, 2010
1:18 pm

papadawg
April 9th, 2010
10:16 am

“As Andy G. would say, Bless your little ol heart. Saban, WAH WAH
Chinks in the armor Tide. Could have & should have been beat a couple of times last year. They see the writing on the wall this year, that’s why they are crying”

Papadawg,

No whining here. We completed back to back undefeated regular seasons the last 2 years even with the schedule stacked against us. As for the idea that we “could have and should have” been beaten a couple times last year as in AU and UT games. I got one thing to see. Close only counts in horseshoes and atom bombs and “woulda, coulda, shoulda” aint doesn’t get it done. 12-10 and 26-21 all I know is that we had more points when the game ended.

RxDawg
April 9th, 2010
10:22 am
“If there is one thing Bama fans are good at doing, it’s comming up with excuses.”

Yes. We have lots of excuses for 2 straight undefeated regular seasons even with the schedule stacked against us in 2008 and 2009 just like it will be again in 2010.

athensdawg
April 9th, 2010
10:29 am
“true champions don’t whine about circumstances. they just strap it on and get ‘er done.
all the whining boils down to money…potential lost money because the tide might lose a game and that could potentially cost everyone in the SEC some cash.”

So you’re going to talk to us about “strapping it on and gettin er done” after going 8-5 while we went 14-0. Priceless.

Coach Mike Price

April 9th, 2010
1:19 pm

“So you’re going to talk to us about “strapping it on and gettin er done” after going 8-5 while we went 14-0. Priceless.”

Bama men love strap ons.

BAMA STAN

April 9th, 2010
1:19 pm

13 NATIONAL TITLES – 22 SEC TITLES!!!

I get a kick on the Bama Satan imitator our there!!! Being Copied is the ulitmate form of flattery!!!

With that said – the open game situation is a glitch – we will have to deal with it – suck it up – and make sure future schedules are fair for all of the teams in the league.

Hate that this has happened – but it is unfair to ask other teams fans to switch after schedules have been posted.

One on the big reasons Florida went on a huge win streak run against UGA – was Spurrier insisted on an open week before the UGA game.
This gave him 2 weeks to prepare and a fresh team. Georgia’s last two victories against Florida – the gators did NOT have an open week in 2004 and in 2007 – while UGA had an open week in 2007.

SEC needs to fix this for all teams.

UGA would be wise to keep an open date before the Florida game.

ROLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL TIDE!!!

5IML

April 9th, 2010
1:22 pm

Tide Rising,

This blog is no place for facts and reasonable thinking. Try some name-calling and wildly false accusations.

Coach Mike Price

April 9th, 2010
1:24 pm

“This blog is no place for facts and reasonable thinking.”

Considering Bama fans talk about 13 NT when they never won 13………….

Whiner Tider

April 9th, 2010
1:26 pm

Whine whine whine. Would Coach Bryant whine? Would John Wayne whine? Would President Lincoln whine? Is Alabama whining? Yes.

5IML

April 9th, 2010
1:26 pm

Coach Price,

Were you at least able to draw unemployment after the BAMA fiasco? Loooooooooooser! (Not the real Coach Mike Price, I’m referring you, the imbecilic blogger)

5IML

April 9th, 2010
1:30 pm

Yes, we are whining.

Whoa is us, we are the defending BCS champions.
Whoa is us, we are the defending SEC champions.
Whoa is us, we are the two-time defending SEC West champions.
Whoa is us, we have the current Heisman winner.
Whoa is us, we are on the cover of SI every couple of weeks
Whoa is us, our spring game will be in ESPN.
Whoa is us, our stadium is expanding to 102K.
Whoa is us, GameDay will be in Tuscaloosa for at least two games next year (Penn St., UF).

Yeah, we really need to get a handle on all of our whining.

Tide Rising

April 9th, 2010
1:32 pm

JB

April 9th, 2010
11:04 am

BamaG, no, we quit trying the 12 YEARS before Saban got there. You guys love to kick sand on us Dawgs, but ya’ll were pitiful for a long stretch BS (before Saban). Give us a chance to straighten ourselves out, as we waited on you guys to do the same. Hell, I think we even beat you 3 of 4 times, even with Saban once on your home field. AS a SEC fan also, we are proud of you guys, but show a little class.

JB,

Saban got here in 2007. We had several 10+ winning seasons in the in between years pre Saban 99,02,05 and an sec title in 99 so its not as if we were gone for 20 years in between championships and no successful seasons.

Secondly, Bama fans love to kick Georgia fans with sand? Take a look back at the initial 50 comments and you will see a lot of the comments being dog fans deriding Bama fans right off the bat and calling us whiners over what any rational person can plainly see is a scheduling disparity that is blatantly unfair. Tony could write a blog on the Vandy commodores and it would be only a matter of time before the dog fans start in with comments about bama.

Thirdly,

Show a little class? Should we show the same kind of class dog fans were showing when you were pre season 08 no. 1 and did all manner of smack talking? Or how about all the smack talking after Georgia beat Bama in OT in Saban’s first year? Seems like you also got in a little dig mentioning that UGA won 3 of the last 4 against Bama. So what? We won 4 of the last 7 against UGA and hold the alltime edge 36-26 if you really want to go back and live in the past. And what’s more is that those 3 wins earlier in the 2000s came against probation sanctioned, scholarship depleted Alabama teams. Hell everyone was beating us when we were playing with half a deck and 21 fewer scholly players than everyone else.

Anyway, bottom line JB is that dog fans seem to start this crap every day with their little potshots at Bama. Funny but we don’t hear it from Gator fans or LSU fans and very little from even AU or UT fans. Its usually the dog fans that start off with their potshots. Some of your fellow posters need to clean up their own act and show some class before you talk to us about showing some class.

CM

April 9th, 2010
1:32 pm

Bama fans are just plain redneck and ignorant. When will GA put up a border to keep these hicks out!

5IML

April 9th, 2010
1:36 pm

CM is a Rhodes Scholar.

Gen Neyland

April 9th, 2010
1:37 pm

Blog posters and facts = Oxymoron…The largest fact that cannot be disputed is the fact that after the dust has settled and the cream of the crop rose to the top, the SEC owns 6 out of 12 BCS Crystal Footballs. Fact. He11, Tiger Woods doesn’t have any Crystal Footballs and if he did, Elin has them in her pocketbook now. That’s how good the SEC has done..! So to all you outsiders, stay out of our family squabbles.

Tide Rising

April 9th, 2010
1:38 pm

Coach Mike Price,

Glad to see our success has brought out all the hate in you. Jealousy won’t get you anywhere. As for your ludicrous comments that Bama players are paying professors and all that. Please send me the proof so that I can wire you $1,000. You can do that can’t you? Money talks and bool sheet walks.

CM

April 9th, 2010
1:40 pm

5IML,

How did you know? Thanks for noticing.

Banjo boy

April 9th, 2010
1:42 pm

CM,

I starred in the book and film “deliverance” about inbred man rapin hillbillies. Guess what? The movie and book are based on rural Georgia. Not Alabama son. Want more? How about Gone with the Wind with all the intermarrying cousins? Yep. This classic with all the inbreeding was based in Georgia. Not Alabama. What state was settled as a penal colony? Yep. You guess it. Georgia is correct. So if you’re family is descended from Georgians odds are your great ancestors were a bunch of felons and ex cons. And to think you inbreeds try to look down on other southern states. Good one son.

Kirby Smart

April 9th, 2010
1:43 pm

Cant wait till Bama plays Jawja again.

And you thought the infamous “black out” was bad.

Just wait, puppy fans.

ReptilesRule

April 9th, 2010
1:43 pm

Bama fans…don’t expect too much symphathy here about your schedule or for that matter anything else. Welcome back to the top. These Georgia fans have more excuses than Tiger’s got mistresses. Be prepared to hear this all year… that you only win because Saban cheats or that the refs give you favorable calls, or that Mike Slive wants Bama in the SECCG against UF or that your schedule is too easy etc etc etc. God forbid Mark Ingram ever has a concussion because they’ll all suddenly turn into brain surgeons and say he should never play again and that Saban will risk his health and even his players life just for a W. And of course, don’t let a job open up anywhere, especially in the pros, ’cause you know Sabans heading there. And that they’d rather have Mark Richt anyway because he is such a nice guy and so classy and Saban is just a another jerk. Have I pretty much covered it doggies??

Kirby Smart

April 9th, 2010
1:45 pm

CM just got OWNED.

Wow! Even I feel bad for him.

Feel especially bad for his 290 lb wife that he is about to put her head thru his trailer wall in Winder.

Blue

April 9th, 2010
1:45 pm

BamaStan; you are so cool that I want to be just like you someday and say cool phrases like rammer jammer and such. Wow…are you cool.

Coach Mike Price

April 9th, 2010
1:50 pm

“Were you at least able to draw unemployment after the BAMA fiasco? Loooooooooooser! (Not the real Coach Mike Price, I’m referring you, the imbecilic blogger)”

HAHAHAAHAHHAHA!!!!!!

Bama fans=retards

Urban Meyer and Tim Tebow never beat Auburn

April 9th, 2010
1:51 pm

#1 BAMA FAN

April 9th, 2010
1:53 pm

BAMA would love to start back scheduling Notre Dame but it would hurt the SOS. RTR

Coach Mike Price

April 9th, 2010
1:53 pm

“Jealousy won’t get you anywhere.”

Who’s jealous? I’m just here to make fun of hillbilly Bammer fans. Seems to be working just fine.

Coach Mike Price

April 9th, 2010
1:53 pm

“BAMA would love to start back scheduling Notre Dame but it would hurt the SOS.”

Yeah, Bama did much better in scheduling such great teams as The Citadel.

CM

April 9th, 2010
1:54 pm

Kirby Smart,

Your words describe exactly what I mean when it comes to putting up a border. Hey, think it’s time for you to pop open another Bud…

Coach Mike Price

April 9th, 2010
1:54 pm

“When will GA put up a border to keep these hicks out!”

When will Florida put up a border to keep the GA hicks out?

Kirby Smart

April 9th, 2010
1:56 pm

Doesnt half the student body of Aubarn live in trailer parks??

We would go visit friends in high school down in metropolis of Aubarn and they all lived in trailer parks. Not making this up.

Had a sweet hanging out in one of the only two bars the whole city has to offer.

5IML

April 9th, 2010
1:58 pm

Reptiles,

You forgot that say that Bama is going to get the death penalty from the NCAA soon. Other than that, you pretty much covered all the jealousy-inspired accusations and insults.

Bama fan

April 9th, 2010
2:01 pm

ReptilesRule,

I think you just about covered it. What’s sad is that everything you wrote is very predictable of the Georgia fans. I guess you’re just used to it and you know in advance what their loser rhetoric is going to be all about.

Kirby Smart

April 9th, 2010
2:01 pm

CM….thought I sent you back to your trailer park down in Winder?

You want some?

Dont make me embarrass you in front of all these people on this blog.

#1 GT fan

April 9th, 2010
2:01 pm

Bama is screwed!

Just to make this point……….. It does not matter what conference you are in when teams have 2 weeks to prepare for you. It is still gonna be hard for both teams.

And another thought………………………………………..

If Bama is sooooooooooo good, then why are they complaining?

All of the teams in the SEC are gonna have a hard time when it comes to playing in the conference. And I, as a GT fan, am not afraid to say that the SEC is by far the hardest conference. But that does not mattter, all the teams have to play. All of them have to win.

GO JACKETS!!!!

and good luck Bama

Maccadave

April 9th, 2010
2:01 pm

Saban is a cheating cry baby and will never be a Bear. What is he afraid of a challenge? He did away with the team that should have beat him with that bad hit on the Texas quarterback in the Championship Game. Tell me that wasn’t a planned move, and I will show you a pattern. He took out Charles Scott at LSU and ended his college career knowing he could run straight through his defense and beat Bama.
Maybe this will be the true test of a “Champion,” allow all conference teams to have a bi week against their champ. Raise the stakes a bit.

Coach Mike Price

April 9th, 2010
2:02 pm

“Doesnt half the student body of Aubarn live in trailer parks??”

No, you’re thinking of your relatives in Tuscaloser.