Archive for the ‘Georgia State / CAA’ Category

College playoff may be moving toward using committee

Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany slammed polls as a method of picking title game participants.

Big Ten's Jim Delany slammed polls, computers as methods for picking title game teams.

I’m sorry, but did the Big Ten — the Betamax of college football conferences — just enter the digital age? And become pals with the SEC in the process?

Big Ten officials fell in line with the SEC and the Big 12 Monday, declaring that the impending college football playoff should be comprised of the nations four best teams, regardless of their conference affiliation. Commissioner Jim Delany also endorsed the possibility of junking polls and computer rankings and forming a selection committee to pick those four teams — an idea that has been pushed in my disturbed little corner of the universe.

Quoting Delany from a Monday news conference with Nebraska chancellor Harvey Perlman and Indiana president Michael McRobbie: “Everybody recognizes the present poll system is not a good proxy. … It should be the four best teams.”

Did that really happen?

The Big Ten and Pacific 10/12 conferences have long …

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Keep bowls and BCS away from college football playoff

College football doesn't need bowls or the letters "BCS" for its playoffs system.

College football officials must realize they don't need bowls or the BCS for a playoff system.

In full disclosure, and at the risk of ostracizing myself from seemingly all except those who fondly recall memories of the inaugural 1902 Tournament East-West game in Pasadena — where admission was 50 cents, plus $1 for the family’s horse-and-buggy – here goes:

I like bowl games. I like tradition. I like the idea of an end-of-season reward for two college football teams, players and their families. It probably helped that I grew up in the shadow of the Rose Bowl (which the East-West became) and not the Astro-Bluebonnet Bowl. But there was no urgency for a playoff, and the arguments over rankings were considered part of the fabric and charm of college football.

We’re past charm, of course. I’m not completely past the thought that bowl games serve some purpose, but I don’t want them anywhere near a college football playoff. Do you know what the dysfunctional combination of …

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Richt, Johnson score high on rankings, not Chizik, Muschamp

Sporting News ranked Mark Richt (14) just ahead of Paul Johnson (19) among 124 FBS coaches.

Sporting News has Mark Richt (14) just ahead of Paul Johnson (19) among 124 FBS coaches.

The problem with most “rankings” in sports is that there’s a large degree of knee jerk thinking in the thought process. Somebody wins, they deserve a stature. Somebody loses, they’re road kill. A coach wins a BCS title, he’s a sudden visionary.

But The Sporting News just ranked 124 FBS (Division I) coaches in college football and in my view the publication pretty much nailed it. Not so much because Nick Saban of Alabama is No. 1 or Charley Molnar of Massachusetts is No. 124 (UMass has a football team?) but because of the placement of so many others. A few examples:

– Boise State’s Chris Peterson (No. 2) and Texas Christian’s Gary Patterson (No. 7) both received lofty rankings for their success in actual games, not on national signing day. Winning games really is what coaching is all about, is it not?

– Auburn’s Gene Chizik was ranked only 36th nationally and seventh among 14 SEC coaches, …

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Bobby Petrino saga explained in Taiwan cartoon (video)

Oh, Bobby: You can run but you can't hide (even in Taiwan).

Petrino can run but he can't hide (even in Taiwan).

It’s not safe for Bobby Petrino to open his eyes yet.

I turns out Petrino is not only infinitely mockable here in the U.S. — and particularly Flowery Branch, where today has been declared a national holiday — but also in Taiwan. They’ve turned his story into a cartoon.

Next Media Animation has pieced together a hilarious animated summary of Petrino’s “inappropriate relationship” with Jessica Dorrell, his hiring of her in the athletic department (including a $20,000 payment) and his firing as Arkansas football coach.

It is possible to listen to the subtitles in English. But I think you will find it much more entertaining in Taiwanese.

Here you go . . .

By Jeff Schultz

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UPDATED: Arkansas had no choice but to fire Petrino

This would have been the face of Arkansas football if Bobby Petrino wasn't fired. (AP photos)

This would have been the face of Arkansas football if Bobby Petrino wasn't fired. (AP photos)

(Update at 10 p.m. This column is a rewrite of the previous version to reflect Bobby Petrino’s firing.)

(Update II at 10:45 p.m. I’ve added Petrino’s statement on his firing below the column. My standard reaction: I judge people by actions, not words.)

Once you get past the emotional side that says Bobby Petrino just got run over by the karma train, once you get past the misguided Arkansas fans who started a Facebook page in support of their morally bankrupt coach and carried signs such as, “What’s wrong with scoring in the offseason?” this much is clear: Arkansas had no choice.

Bobby Petrino went 21-5 in the last two seasons as a football coach in the SEC. He’s out of a job. What does that tell you?

This is a sport where college presidents and athletic directors have been known to give only lip service to matters of academic reform and ethics — and whatever flawed mindset …

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Arkansas fans, like Petrino, should be ashamed of themselves

This is how the world works in Fayetteville, and maybe anywhere a coach wins. (AP photo)

This is how the world works in Fayetteville, and maybe anywhere a coach wins. (AP photos)

(Folks. In the wake of Bobby Petrino’s firing, an updated column will be coming shortly.)

The great thing about sports is it turns normal everyday people into idiots, and I mean that in a good way. Nowhere else in society can we find white collar, blue collar and no collar somewhat spiritually united at football tailgates, wearing the same goofy fan wear, sharing conspiracy theories that they read on message boards (so they must be true) and waiting for their turn to vent on sports blab radio (between meetings).

The worst thing about sports is it turns normal everyday people into idiots, and I mean that in the worst-possible, blithering way. Nowhere else can we find people, regardless of race, creed, religion, economic level or social standing, spontaneously lose all sense of rational thought or perspective.

We see it often when an athlete is embraced as a hero, a need, regardless of his …

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How they really stand, from Braves (1) to Weasels (12)

Hey look, the Braves have new uniforms. So how about a new finish? (AP photo)

Hey look, the Braves have new uniforms. So how about a new finish? (AP photo)

Welcome to this year’s edition of “How They Really Stand,” my ranking of all area sports teams, taking into account wins, losses, direction, potential, coaches, general managers, owners, recruiting coordinators and whether anybody provides us with more civic pride than, say, The Big Chicken (the bar is low).

I’m unveiling this a month earlier than usual because it seemed like a natural break in the sports schedule with the Braves getting ready to start spring training and the Hawks taking an off day between personalities. Two tweaks this year: I’m adding Georgia State football and basketball and replacing the Thrashers with a new entry. (Last year’s ranking in parenthesis.)

1. Braves (1): The best team in town lost 20 of its last 30 games. How about a nice embalming smoothie to go with those chicken fingers? But the Braves looked like a potential World Series team on paper last season until the paper …

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Georgia could be dead zone for NCAA’s March Madness

Mark Fox's team reached the NCAA tournament in his second season but the loss of Travis Leslie and Trey Thompkins pushed the reset button. (AP photo)

Georgia's Mark Fox reached NCAA tournament in year two but his third team is young and thin.

Brian Gregory inherited a down and vagabond program this year. (Johnny Crawford)

Brian Gregory inherited a down and vagabond program at Georgia Tech. (Johnny Crawford)

As a general rule, February is when the sports world morphs from rock to elevator music.

College football is over. The NFL is over. Baseball’s spring gates haven’t swung open. It’s too early to get excited about NBA playoff races (and, if you’re a Hawks fan, February isn’t providing a wonderful tease for March and April, anyway). The local NHL team – blown up by careless owners and an invertebrate of a league commissioner.

So in February, we turn to college basketball.

Help.

Here in the state of Georgia, which produces some of the finer high school talent in the country for seemingly every university in the other 49 states, college basketball is relatively off the landscape.

There is a chance that no team from the state will reach the NCAA tournament field, and that’s not even the most …

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Countdown: Super ads, PETA’s wings, Saban’s job offer?

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Now on Stage 3, at the Super Bowl . . .

If this was Pledge of Allegiance, Janet would have right hand over her heart, not left hand over … you know.

Like most people in the regular and underworlds, The Count likes the Super Bowl, not for the game but for the food and the commercials, and that rare occasion when the the NFL halftime show morphs into a night at the “Club Hubba Hubba,” less for the split-second look at part of one of Janet Jackson’s breastacles (I saw it! I saw it!) but because it looked like somebody had just connected jumper cables to the toes of then-commissioner Paul Tagliabue, who said, “We were extremely disappointed by the MTV-produced halftime show. The show was offensive, inappropriate and embarrassing to us and our fans.” After which the league showed more commercials to help you get drunk and correct erectile dysfunction. (”Daddy, why did mommy laugh at the Viagra commercial?”) Any way, this is Super Bowl week, and that means more new commercials and hopefully nothing to surprising at …

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Scholarship guarantees, early signing would curb oversigning

An early-signing period would've prevented Justin Taylor's disappearing scholarship. (AP photo)

An early signing period would've prevented Justin Taylor's disappearing scholarship. (AP photo)

One week after leading Alabama to its second BCS title in three seasons, Nick Saban reaffirmed that his commitment to winning isn’t necessarily rooted in a commitment to doing things the right way.

Saban informed Justin Taylor,  a North Atlanta High School running back, that he was yanking his scholarship offer from 11 months ago. Eleven months ago. Never mind that Taylor was the seventh oral commitment for Alabama’s 2012 class. Nor that he was a good kid, a terrific player and hadn’t once screamed, “War Eagle!” This is the ugly side of college football that coaches hide between the disingenuous, “Don’t worry, momma, I’ll take care of your boy,” speeches.

The substance of a coach’s word morphs from oak to oatmeal when he finds a faster, stronger player.

This is a form of “oversigning” (or in this case overcommitting) in recruiting, a reprehensible practice we’ve banged on several …

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