HOOVER, Ala. — Welcome to the zoo: SEC media days.
If you took Super Bowl media day, subtracted MTV and questions like, “If you could go through rehab with Lindsay or Britney, whom would it be?” and actually made it somewhat relevant to a sports event, this would be it. Actually, I say that even knowing that there is no sports event at the end of the week, but where else can you get access to 12 head coaches and 36 players from the best and certainly most entertaining
college football conference in the country in a span of three days?
Why, even the likable Bill Hancock from the unlikeable BCS is here.
Tim Tucker and I will be here all week. We’ve both planned a blur of columns, blogs, stories and Tweets. So keep checking back for updates and you can follow us on Twitter (@JeffSchultzAJC and @ajcuga). All posts will automatically go on Twitter,
and I’ll try to “Tweet” a quote or some nugget any time it’s worthy.
Here’s the order of press conferences. Each head coach will be followed by three players from that school.
– Today: Bill Hancock (BCS), Mike Slive (SEC commissioner), Nick Saban (Alabama), Dan Mullen (Mississippi State), Urban Meyer (Florida), Joker Phillips (Kentucky).
– Thursday: Bobby Petrino (Hell), Mark Richt (Georgia), Steve Spurrier (South Carolina), Bobby Caldwell (Vanderbilt).
– Friday: Gene Chizik (Auburn), Derek Dooley (Tennessee), Les Miles (LSU), Houston Nutt (Mississippi).
I’ll probably be writing major columns in the next three days on (chronologically) Saban, Richt and Dooley and blogs on several other subjects. There is no shortage of storylines going into media days.
♦ The NCAA is looking into Florida, Alabama and South Carolina regarding stories that a player either took money from an agent (Maurkice Pouncey at Florida) or had contact with an agent (Marcel Dareus at Alabama; Weslye Sanders at South Carolina).
♦ Tennessee, which had already been reeling from the sudden departure of Lane Kiffin, is a program in turmoil (which is no fault of Dooley) after several players were arrested in connection with a bar fight that left a police officer unconscious.
♦ Georgia has had several players arrested this offseason, mostly for underage drinking, and then there’s that whole Damon Evans thing. Given this is the first opportunity for many national writers will have to speak to Richt, he is sure to be asked about the atmosphere in Athens.
♦ Vanderbilt normally wouldn’t draw much attention but its coach, Bobby Johnson, suddenly retired last week.
♦ Spurrier is trying to become relevant again and some (not me) believe South Carolina can win the SEC East.
Let me know if there’s a particular story you’re interested in or you have a question. Tim or I will try to get you an answer. I’ll check back soon. But now, I need to get me one of those credential thingies so I don’t get thrown out.
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