Countdown whines: SEC coaches, ESPN, Brooking

The Count answers to no blowhard

Word is Brooke Hundley tried to jump on The Count's capetails.

The Count has nothing against financial growth. For years, he has been looking to expand his fan base and benefit from merchandise sales. Maybe come out with capes in a rainbow of colors. Edible fangs. A tell-all book on the backroom shenanigans on Kermit, who thinks he owns the place just because he’s on “Baseball Tonight” and is constantly hopping from one female intern to the other on Sesame Street. But the downside to huge financial growth and stature sometimes is it makes people obsess over every little thing and maybe just a bit more paranoid. We count down . . .

10. Turns out the SEC has a ‘Code of Ethics’

I’ve got three emails in the past week in my inbox from the SEC. 10/22, 8:07 p.m. Subject line: PETRINO REPRIMANDED. 10/26, 1:53 p.m. Subject line: KIFFIN REPRIMANDED. 10/26, 3:33 p.m. Subject line: MULLEN REPRIMANDED. Just once I’d like to get something from SEC commissioner Mike Slive that says, “Jeff, how are you doing? How’s the wife and kids? Why did you tell me to take the Falcons and the points? Mike.”  But no, Slive is making a show of it because he’s upset that his SEC coaches are publicly criticizing referees, which is like criticizing the conference, which is like criticizing him. It turns out these coaches violated the, “Southeastern Conference Code of Ethics,” and who even knew that existed? SEC Bylaw 10.5.4 states that “coaches, players and support personnel shall refrain from all public criticism of officials.” I just have one question: What if the officiating stinks?

9. Coaches whine too much (because they make too much)

Hello. My name is Mike Slive and I have a headache.

Hello. My name is Mike Slive and I have a headache.

I’m not defending coaches. Fact is, coaches spend too much time whining. Rather than complain about the call that they think led to their team losing, they should worry about the 79 calls they made that led to the game coming down to that one call. Because dude, the whole “league agenda” and “out to get us” conspiracy thing is so yesterday. But rather than worrying about whining coaches, why doesn’t the SEC fix the problem? In fact, why doesn’t the NCAA fix the problem? Officiating isn’t any worse now than it ever has been, but I’m not sure it’s any better. It’s just getting more attention now because of the magnitude of the games, the money involved and the media covering it. College football is bigger than it ever has been. And so, maybe it’s time for a new approach.

8. My plan: NCAA should run officials

Question: Why does each conference have their own officials? Don’t the SEC, ACC, Big 12, Big 10, Pac-10 and for that matter the Sun Belt all play the same sport by the same rules? Given that, all officiating should come under one roof: The NCAA’s roof. They like to be in charge of everything any way. (Talk about discipline memos.) The NCAA should take a cut from each conference and invest more time and money — since we know they have it — to improve the quality of officiating. Hire better. Train better. There still will be mistakes but at least we’ll know the effort is being made. Right now all we know is Slive is sending out too many memos.

7.  Did they film, ‘The Harrad Experiment’ in Bristol?

ESPN George Bodenheimer prepares for his next staff meeting.

Here's ESPN president George "Eros" Bodenheimer just before meeting with executives Bacchus and Aphrodite.

I’ve got it! The E in ESPN stands for Eros! Seriously, can we go a week without some sex scandal there? With all of the networks ESPN has now, you’d think some of this story lines would end up as programming. Why mock the NFL with, “Playmakers,” when they can focus closer to home? So let me get this straight: Steve Phillips was a disaster as a general manager, a husband, a father, a human being and certainly a talent scout because he’s a sex addict? Yes, word is that Phillips has entered a rehab center to treat this addiction, which generally afflicts all men between the ages of 11 and 97, although for some reason none of us ever actually seek treatment for it because, like, duh. Steve Lefkowitz, who is Phillips’ agent and therefore can’t be trusted, said this treatment “has nothing to do” with Phillips getting fired, and that he’s “trying to save his marriage.” Lefkowitz referred all other questions to his spokesman, Geppetto. ESPN has fired Phillips and the 22-yard clipboard holder he was having an affair with, Brooke Hundley, who never really had a career to blow up.

6. The UFL is on the move! (Not that way, the other way.)

Remember the UFL? If you have a life, probably not. The fledgling football minor league milked a potential Michael Vick signing for as long as it could. But “commissioner” Michael Huyghue might as well have announced, “I just saw a vision of Mary in my bowl of ziti and she’s going to sing the National Anthem at the opener!” because that was as close to reality as Vick signing. Here’s your UFL update: Nobody cares. Seriously, four teams have played five total games but the league might as well be based in a black hole. They announced a crowd of 6,341 in San Francisco the other night. But the turnstile count looked closer to 3,000. Probably 27 of the 3,000 actually paid. Half price. And maybe got a free hot dog. And a car. OK, seriously? Wait — it gets better.

5. Hmmm… World Series or UFL… World Series or…

George Steinbrenner looks horrified as he receives word that the Yankees may lose fans to the UFL.

Yankees owner George Steinbrenner looks horrified as he receives word that the team may lose fans to the UFL.

Long-term projections for the league can’t be  good. The league just announced it was moving two upcoming games. One scheduled for New York’s Citi Field (home of the Mets) has been  moved to James M. Shuart Stadium (home of Hofstra University). Another scheduled for San Francisco’s AT&T Park (home of the Giants) has been moved to Spartans Stadium (home of San Jose State). You may want to padlock your fence. At this rate, the UFL may relocate a playoff game to your backyard. Huyghue denied that these are warning signs. The league is just scouting all potential venues for next season. Right. So we’re to assume that the disparate rent costs at AT&T Park and Spartans Stadium has nothing to do with it? Has Michael Huyghue met Steve Lefkowitz? By the way, the “New York Sentinels” play their home opener Thursday night at Giants Stadium. It’s the same night as game two of the World Series at Yankee Stadium. Yahtzee!

4. Wait, you’re trusting HIM to read a green?

This is a rare picture of Damian Rhodes with the puck in front of him.

Thrashers flashbacks: This is a rare picture of Damian Rhodes -- with the puck in front of him.

Best line Don Waddell ever had a few years back was when I asked him if he went to Damian Rhodes’ wedding. “No, but I paid for it,” he said. (Thank you, try the veal.) The Thrashers’ general manager gave Rhodes a four-year, $9 million contract in 1999. He was the franchise’s first player under contract. Rhodes was supposed to be a goalie. He turned into a punch line floating in a whirlpool. And so secured a lifetime of Waddell party jokes. So where’s Rhodes now? He surfaced last week at a fall PGA tournament in Scottsdale, Ariz., caddying for Fred Couples. (Thanks to reader “Wayne from Tuskegee” for the tip.) Rhodes golfs a lot. Gee, now there’s a shock. He apparently also is friends with Phil Mickelson’s caddy, Jim McKay. Couples finished 66th in the tournament. Rhodes suffered a groin strain three holes into the second round and was put on the injured list.

3. Thrashers, Part II: A more recent problem

So here’s your Thrashers’ question of the day: If we can assume that Ilya Kovalchuk’s absence for a month with a broken foot makes the team worse — and I think that’s a safe assumption — does the injury effectively diminish his chances of re-signing? Here’s my admittedly strange line of logic. Waddell tried to strengthen the team to convince him to re-sign. Kovalchuk wants to win. But what if the team slides now? Maybe it doesn’t seem fair but that’s the reality of the situation. And while the team clearly has greater depth no, there is no No. 2 savior.

2. Keith Brooking’s Evil Mini-Me

"In your face, Falcons!" Wait. Is that really Keith Brooking?

"In your face, Falcons!" Wait a minute. Was that really Keith Brooking we saw (and heard)?

Yeah, I know many of you are mad at Keith Brooking for the arm flapping and the trash-talking (his words) during the Falcons’ loss to Dallas. Personally, I think it’s hysterical. I’m not sure if the guy uttered a word of smacktalk throughout his tenure here. He said he “ain’t apologizing to anybody” for the arm-flapping. He apologized to some former teammates for things he said during the game, but relayed this story: “The last thing I was told by one of the Atlanta coaches was, ‘It’s a young man’s game.’ I guess that old man can still play.’’ I have nothing against Brooking. He’s a good guy and a hard worker, although he clearly wasn’t an impact player his last couple of seasons with the Falcons. I’ve written it before and I’ll repeat it: I had a much bigger problem with the decision to let Lawyer Milloy go than Brooking. But it’s comical how Brooking suddenly is feeding off of all this bitterness when he praised the everybody on the way out the door and owner Arthur Blank even held an unusual goodbye news conference for him at his palatial family home office. Something tells me this week may be his season highlight.

1. Nothing like having a steroid-juiced phony as an instructor

The St. Louis Cardinals have hired Mark McGwire as a hitting coach. Should be interesting to see what advice he gives to players on how to hit more home runs. And by the way — why isn’t he banned? Are you listening, Bud? Somebody send him an email.

298 comments Add your comment

Larvell "SugarBear" Blanks

October 27th, 2009
8:38 am

Saint Simons

October 27th, 2009
8:39 am

Go Gators !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saint Simons

October 27th, 2009
8:40 am

45 – 42 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! hahahahahahahahahahahahaha

MightyQuinn

October 27th, 2009
8:41 am

Third! (story of my life)

DAWGS

October 27th, 2009
8:42 am

Morning News And Notes | MrSEC.com

October 27th, 2009
8:46 am

[...] 12 points and allowed just two combined touchdowns against them.Jeff Schultz of The AJC looks at whining SEC coaches and poor SEC officiating.Stupidly, Matt Hayes of The Sporting News says that the SEC is the second-best league in the land to [...]

PMC

October 27th, 2009
8:50 am

I hope he doesn’t appologise. I like hating the guy. He’s a titanic douchebag and has been one all along. This is who he is. Keith Brooking is Judas Iscariot and he’s right up with Jeff George. Effigies will be hung and burned to excise his stench from our history.

MightyQuinn

October 27th, 2009
8:50 am

As far as judging Kermit goes, the Count should consider that Kermit’s main squeeze is a pig! Oink!

L-DAWG

October 27th, 2009
8:52 am

I’VE BEEN WORKING ON THE RAILROAD!!!
I ROOT FOR MY TEAM THROUGH THICK AND THIN GRAVY, AND RESPECT MY COACHES SO LONG AS THEY ARE GAY AND ARE MY COACHES!! JUST BECAUSE I REFUSE TO WRITE BAD THINGS ABOUT THE TEAM I LOVE DOESNT MEAN I AM NOT A GREAT, TRUE FAN!! JUST MEANS I’M A BLIND HOMER WITH NO OPINIONS OF MY OWN.
AND WHAT DO GEORGIA TECH “FANS” AND uga FANS HAVE IN COMMON EVERYBODY?? THEY BOTH OBSESS OVER THEM JACKETS, AND WHATS GOING ON OUT IN THE ATL!!!
IM A FAG!!!!
CANNOT WAIT TO SEE MARK RICHT CRY IN HIS POSTGAME PRESS CONFERENCE AFTER HE GETS A SKULL THUMPING FROM THEM GATORS!!!!!!

ALSO L-DAWG GET A LIFE CAPS LOCK = CRUISE CONTROL FOR COOL!!!!!!!!!

TechFan

October 27th, 2009
8:53 am

Go UGA only for this week. It would be sweet for yall to knock off the gators

Larvell "SugarBear" Blanks

October 27th, 2009
8:54 am

Jeff,

As always a well written Tuesday Countdown! But somehow I would be remiss if I didn’t point out that you didn’t mention anything about the big showdown here in Jacksonville this weekend. No one knows what team CMR is bringing here to Jacksonville. And was I the only one that saw Urban Myer trying to make out with Tim Tebow after the LSU game?

Falctech

October 27th, 2009
8:54 am

Was Brooking flapping his arms seven yards downfield? You know, where all of his tackles have taken place the last 5-6 seasons. I lost all respect for the dooshbag!!!!

falcon 71

October 27th, 2009
8:59 am

all the cardinals players will get bigger, stronger. faster over the offseason thru the miracle of modern chemistry

FalconUGAFan

October 27th, 2009
9:02 am

I completely agree about the NCAA running the officials. It is silly in this day and age that it is otherwise. If anything it would stop the officials “homer ” chatter.

MiltonDawg

October 27th, 2009
9:11 am

The SEC and other officials are getting paid by the MOB- it’s all about point spreads and victorys. Just like the NBA, these calls are getting ridicolous. Coaches should have a right to complain, us fans do it if the players or coaches don’t play good, why can’t the coaches call out the officials who are horrible at their job.

Tech Tony

October 27th, 2009
9:16 am

Erotic Sexual Performances Nightly. Soon Comcast will put the station in the 440 channel range next to Playboy and the Jenna channel.

Mirna from smyrna

October 27th, 2009
9:18 am

Brooking and the SEC refs = jokes and no respect

GeoffDawg

October 27th, 2009
9:22 am

You think there’s no accountability now with the officials? Just wait until the NCAA gets their hooks into it. At least public pressure can get Mike Slive’s attention. The NCAA operates like the IRS when it comes to redressing grievances. They operate under a “don’t like it? suck it” policy.

RushLimbaugh's Boxers

October 27th, 2009
9:23 am

Brooking is a bum. Two tackles all game – he was more like a Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader than a linebacker. How does a linebacker only get two tackles?

lefty fielder

October 27th, 2009
9:24 am

Brooking is a Deutchebag? I didn’t know he was French. That explains a few things.

Tech Tony

October 27th, 2009
9:26 am

Enter your comments here

Paul From Milton

October 27th, 2009
9:48 am

I really lost a lot of respect for Brooking with his antics on Sunday. Arthur Blank should keep that picture of Brooking and look at it every time someone from his Marketing Department suggests putting Brooking in the Falcons ring of honor.

Green Tea

October 27th, 2009
9:51 am

Speaking of ethics… Somehow ESPN, which produces the biggest Sports Tabloid News Show in history (SportsCenter), deemed it necessary to fire Steve Phillips and his special lady friend this week while still keeping the likes of Jim Rome (Supreme Douchebag) as well as paying for appearances by T Moore (Supreme Racist and Douchebag) on his show. Now that’s an angle I’d like discussed.

And Chris Berman’s voice make me want to kill myself. There, I said it.

Ga Dg 64

October 27th, 2009
9:52 am

SEC office can threaten the coaches all they want. What SEC office should fear are fans and boosters. Hope they don’t learn that lesson too late.

U-no

October 27th, 2009
9:52 am

There has been a tremendous amount of whining this year. Refs have been making bad calls ever since the game was created. My advice to coaches, players, and fans: get over it! The other thing that could be introduced is to review controversial calls just like they do now with controversial or questionable plays. Of course, the games would swell to six hour long affairs, but who cares if the refs are overruled on their mistakes or bias.

juvenal

October 27th, 2009
9:55 am

imagine if the nfl let each division get their own refs..

Green Tea

October 27th, 2009
9:57 am

And on the topic of Steve Phillips getting the axe, does that mean are going to be subjected to more John Kruk babble? I don’t know who is more annoying, John Kruk or Chris Berman. Now there’s an angle I’d like to see discussed…

SimpleDawg

October 27th, 2009
9:57 am

Brooking’s celebrations during the end of the embarrassing display by the Falcons were the last acts of a desperate man….an irrelevant man.

SimpleDawg

October 27th, 2009
9:59 am

Berman’s waaaaay more annoying….he actually thinks he’s witty and entertaining.

Green Tea

October 27th, 2009
10:04 am

“we are”

My apologies.

vafalconfan

October 27th, 2009
10:04 am

Brooking should watch Farve if he wants to get a clue how to behave towards a former employer. It was a business decision and he needs to get over it! He acted like a fool. I liked him when he was here even though he was a liability the last few seasons. His comments after the game will not be forgortten soon by a lot of fans. And they better think twice of hanging his jersey in the dome after he retires. That will be embarrasing for this franchise.

Burdell

October 27th, 2009
10:05 am

Brooking gave his heart and soul to the team while he was here. So he’s a little bitter about not being allowed to retire in Atlanta…he only has a few years left in him anyway. It’s football were talking about here….an emotional sport…he talked some trash and cheered his team on. BIG DEAL! I see that the fans of Schultzie’s column are bedwetters too.

Green Tea

October 27th, 2009
10:08 am

The funny part about Berman is he thinks he’ll one day reach Howard Cosell status. Which will never happen. I have been muting the homerun derby for a few years now so I don’t have to hear “backbackbackbackbackback GONE” ten million times.

Burdell

October 27th, 2009
10:11 am

A bunch of bulldog crybabies whining about Brooking, refs, ESPN…can’t wait until next week when it’s all the excuses from Gainesville. WAH!

Just An Observation

October 27th, 2009
10:13 am

Brookings was on the team that won the game Sunday but he personally did not do much to secure the win. He had NO impact on the Cowboys’ win. He’s all hype and has been for a few years. So Who Cares????

The ESPN debacle with Steve Phillips is typical of what is happening in many facets of society. People migrate to those with power and money in an effort to move up the social ladder and providing sexual favors is probably the #1 way to move up faster…it’s an old story retold time and time again.

Lindsey

October 27th, 2009
10:16 am

Right on Jeff with #7!!

GeoffDawg

October 27th, 2009
10:16 am

Keith Brooking is a classic example of why I prefer college sports over the pros. So what if he gave 100% while he was with the Falcons? He’s a HIGHLY paid professional and that’s exactly what’s expected of him. Most private citizens laid off from a job just move on with their lives and don’t carry some bitter sense of entitlement that they’re special and they deserve better treatment.

With some obvious exceptions, college players are there to get an education, represent their school, and play the game they love. Amateur players and teams are just more fun to follow.

Green Tea

October 27th, 2009
10:16 am

Hey Burdell, I bet you are a guy that probably laughs a Burman’s antics and cute little nicknames he gives players.

Green Tea

October 27th, 2009
10:19 am

Hey Burdell,

backbackbackbackbackbackbackbackbackback

William A. Alexander

October 27th, 2009
10:20 am

Speaking of whining, now Virginia Tech’s Coach Frank Beamer has gotten into the act. He has backed up his star, Chancellor, in saying that he was illegally blocked in the Hokies’ loss to Georgia Tech two weeks ago.
Photos show Chancellor was cleanly blocked. The player spoke to a newspaper on the Virginia coast. Beamer didn’t have to say anything, but he did.

You have to like Frank Beamer – he’s a sore loser. Who wants a coach who just sweetly accepts defeat? But this whining will just make our victory all the sweeter, when we tromp all over the Hokies again, up at their place next year.
GO JACKETS!!!

Doug

October 27th, 2009
10:24 am

Can’t believe it, Schultz actually comes up with a great idea. The NFL doesn’t have officials from the NFC East or the AFC South, they are employed by the NFL.

There is not an SEC official that has the balls to make a call against Florida or Alabama that would cost the SEC $12-15 million by losing a second BCS game.

J

October 27th, 2009
10:27 am

Jeff, you forgot to include Beamer and Kam Chancellor. Don’t worry though, next they will be complaining that you illegally left them out of your countdown.

Cherokee

October 27th, 2009
10:37 am

Look up the word “LOOSER” and you will see a picture of Keith Brooking. Keith once a looser always a looser. That is you, get use to it. Thank god and greyhound you are gone.

Howard Roark

October 27th, 2009
10:42 am

what is with the McGwire attack? Just because shultz labels (perhaps libels) someone a “steroid-juiced phony” doesn’t make it so. McGwire was never charged or convicted. you need to be hating on somebody i guess shultz.

By the way, Selig said he was very pleased with the news and that the Cards should be applauded.

Rev Al Sharpton

October 27th, 2009
10:44 am

Say What!!!!! McGwire back in MLB and not Barry Bonds??? It’s time to march!!!!! Come on Jesse, fuel up the jet and let’s go march over this racial injustice!!!!

Green Tea

October 27th, 2009
10:50 am

I just looked up the word “LOOSER”. Am I missing something? Is he free from anything that binds or restrains?

collegeballfan

October 27th, 2009
10:50 am

Mark McGwire? Yeah, good point, why isn’t he banned?

Party at Joe Cox's to watch SEC Title Game

October 27th, 2009
10:50 am

Joe Cox formally invites you to a Party to watch the SEC Title Game
December, 5 2009
5 P.M.
2009 Loser Lane – Athens, Georgia 30622
BYOB

gdawginkalamazoo

October 27th, 2009
10:54 am

Jeff, is that your baby picture there?

You really blew any chance of getting onto the ESPN network now. Of course unless you are a cheating, gambling, lying SOB then you might still have a chance.

Big Mac heading to the HOF as hitting instructor.

Clay

October 27th, 2009
10:54 am

Hey William A. Axexander, I caught that snide, sideways, put-down of our “sweet” Coach Richt, so take it back right now!! Well, um……he is pretty sweet in defeat, isn’t he?