Posts Tagged ‘Nick Saban’

I’ve got guaranteed picks on Alabama-LSU, Dogs, Falcons! (no, seriously)

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Yes. I decided to come back.

Did you lose the bet?

So there I was, sitting by the railroad tracks,  just me and my Pop-Tarts and my Florida-Clemson-Broncos  parlay ticket and some creepy guy who kept staring at my shoes, waiting for me to fall asleep, when it struck me: I was getting too good! Everybody needs a market correction now and then. Me. Wall Street. Everybody who plays running back for Georgia, at least when they’re not sitting in their dorm room, in a cloud of smoke, next to a bong and an open box of Ho Hos, staring at the same fly for like, I dunno, seven hours, wondering what it would be like to be a fly, then trying to catch the fly, giving up after 12 seconds, then napping for, I dunno, another seven hours. (Hey, did I miss class?)

If Crowell's not careful, "Up In Smoke" might describe his career.

Crowell better hope this isn't his career.

OK, so my strategy sorta went kaboom last week. Sort of like Custer, whose reported famous last words at Little Big Horn were, “Hurrah boys, we’ve got them!” And then …

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Fight predictions: Falcons win, Jackets fall, SEC cowers

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What is going on with all of this violence lately? Coaches going after coaches. Coaches going after players who went after coaches. One player even punched another right in the soft part of his zone defense.

A man can’t even go hunting any more without the whole animal kingdom getting upset about it. True story: Some Alaskan moose hunter — and doesn’t every great story start that way? — went out the other day with his musket, hoping to blow off the head of one of nature’s, unarmed creatures, who were just sitting around playing gin-rummy.

Anyway, this guy gets attacked by a grizzly bear, because unbeknownst to the hunter, the Moose, the Grizzlies and the Deer (Wake Forest) have all formed some super alliance and soon plan to announce a conference championship game and a mega-TV deal with ESPN. (That part, I might’ve made up.).

Anyway, the hunter ends up escaping, and I think the grizzly’s head is now on somebody’s wall, and the moral of the story is that the guy with the …

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Falcons, Dogs, Jackets dance better than Nancy Graceless

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It has been a difficult week, and I’m not just talking about the Braves’ exit or the fact that Nancy Graceless apparently had some sort of wardrobe malfunction on Dancing with the Mutants, which brought the world to a standstill, wiped out half the planet’s vegetation and destroyed the good and the innocence that exists inside all of us.

But the really difficult week has been in Flowery Branch, where everybody has been looking at game film and coming to the realization: “Wow. We really stink. Has Nancy ever played left tackle? Because really, she can’t be any worse than Sam Baker, although he might look better in sequins.”

Could Nancy at left tackle be an improvement?

Could Nancy at left tackle be an improvement?

The Falcons are 1-2 so, yeah, they’ve still got 13 games left. But they’ve got problems. When the quarterback seems to call plays better than the offensive coordinator, and too many guys on defense still look at each other with that Scooby Doo, rut-roh gaze in their eyeballs, and linemen aren’t even stopping …

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Weekend Predictions: Richt over Nutt in the Stress Bowl

This week's tribute is to R.E.M. It's the end of the world as they know it.

This week's tribute is to R.E.M. It's the end of the world as they know it. (But they feel fine.)

Before more solid-gold projections — and after going 12-0 last week and 10-2 against the spread, I believe you owe me a bow, if not a Pop-Tart — this week’s big news comes from the University of Haifa (which by the way shows no signs of joining the University of Baghdad, Teheran Tech and Kabul State in major global realignment).

Actual factual: Scientists have determined that marijuana blocks the development of post-traumatic stress disorder. They reached this conclusion by somehow stressing out laboratory rats and then, I guess, had them pass around a really small bong. Dr. Irit Akiray said that marijuana “did not erase the experience of the trauma, but it prevented the development of post-trauma symptoms in the rat model.”

Loser of the Post Traumatic Stress Bowl gets a chocolate cake.

Loser of the Post Traumatic Stress Bowl gets a chocolate cake!

The only problems that developed during the experiments were rats kept escaping the lab to run …

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Dogs in upset! Falcons win! Mt. Richt erupts! (OK, 2 out of 3)

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Welcome back. The Power Ranger jersey burning will be held on North Campus at 11 a.m. Please bring your own lighter fluid, or a Todd Grantham game plan, whichever you consider more flammable.

It’s only one game into the season. But I fear Mark Richt is starting to morph into an extra from “Scanners,” a 1980s sci-fi movie in which relative super creeps with telepathic powers (Scanners) are used by an evil corporation to, like, take over the planet. There’s a cool scene when somebody’s head literally explodes. History tells us that prevented Bobby Petrino from getting the Auburn job. Wait, wrong movie.

Georgia made the cover of Sports Illustrated! Well, sort of.

Georgia made the Sports Illustrated cover. Sorta.

Anyway, on Tuesday Richt snapped  at a reporter when he was asked a second time about the magnitude of this week’s game. On Wednesday, when asked if this was a “must-win” game, he said, “We look at every game like it’s a must-win. So however you want to spin it, you can spin it. You guys spin it any way you want to anyway.”

On …

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SEC didn’t go nearly far enough with ‘oversigning’

Mike Slive handed out $18.3 million checks to conference members Friday, but the numbers in oversigning issue still don't add up. (AP photo)

Mike Slive handed out $18.3 million checks to conference members Friday, but oversigning numbers don't add up. (AP photo)

Nick Saban, apparent guiding light for the nation’s oppressed and downtrodden — or at least those with a really good time in the 40 — is blaming the media for making too much of this “oversigning” issue.

“You all are creating a bad problem for everybody,” he said. “You’re going to mess up kids’ opportunities by doing what you’re doing.”

Yes, that is my purpose here on earth — to prevent potential student-athletes from fulfilling their dreams. And I’m certain if Nick Saban’s son were to be offered a football scholarship one year, only to be told months later after he had enrolled that there was no room after all, or to be pressured into leaving a season or two later when coaches suddenly determined that he wasn’t good enough, papa bear still would be perfectly fine with all this.

I don’t mean to put this all on Saban, although he and Houston Nutt …

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SI says Richt (UGA) has a better job than Saban (Alabama)

Does Mark Richt really have a better coaching job than Nick Saban? (Jason Getz/AJC)

Does Mark Richt really have the fifth-best coaching job (two spots ahead of Nick Saban)?

Somebody at Sports Illustrated just came up with their list of the 20 best college football coaching jobs in the nation. Not surprisingly, Georgia made the list. Given its history, stature, conference, recruiting base and overflowing cash drawer, I’ve always considered it a top 10 job.

But No. 5 overall? Ahead of Alabama? As well as Penn State, USC and Notre Dame?

That’s the opinion of Andy Staples, who tackled this subject because of the current state of affairs at Ohio State (which is No. 2 on the list). I’m not going to copy-paste the entire article here, but here’s what Staples had to write about Georgia, as well as excerpts on the other SEC and ACC teams on the top 20 list of “most desirable jobs.” His reasons for having the Dogs so high are worthy, and also reaffirms why there is focus on coach Mark Richt this season.

Staples on the Dogs:

Want to know why Mark Richt is on the hot …

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Spurrier’s pay petition meaningless but concept has merits

Steve Spurrier and Nick Saban are among SEC coaches who believe it's time to pay players.

Steve Spurrier and Nick Saban are among SEC coaches who believe it's time to pay players.

Steve Spurrier must have seemed like a seven-year-0ld on a sugar rush at the SEC meetings in Destin as he scrambled to get other coaches to sign up for his pay-the-players plan. But there’s a way to go about this, and a meaningless piece of paper isn’t it.

There are valid arguments on both sides of the pay-for-play issue. The “don’t pay:” Student athletes already receive a valuable scholarship. The “pay”: The dollars in college athletics and contradictory messages from the NCAA have grown out of proportion relative to the concept of amateur athletics. Therefore, it’s time for the athletes to share in the wealth.

My view is somewhere in the middle: I’m certainly not for handing football players $300 paychecks every game, as Spurrier is proposing. Finding a fair and workable salary system that fits into Title IX regulations would be nearly impossible. But I do think it’s time to look into …

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Time for Falcons to open offense (and defensive fix coming)

Minnesota defensive end Ray Edwards is one player who could help Falcons' defense. (AP photo)

Minnesota end Ray Edwards could help Falcons' defense. (AP photo)

One pick into the NFL draft and some Falcons fans already are apoplectic over the decision to trade a bunch of picks for the chance to select Alabama wide receiver Julio Jones. Sorry, I don’t get it.

Obviously, there’s a gamble element to the move. But as I wrote last night, I like it for two reasons: 1) This team needs a few more playmakers — and, yes, that includes the offensive side of the ball; 2) There was no difference-maker available to draft for the defense. The only defensive player the Falcons were enamored of in the first round was Texas A&M defensive end Von Miller, and he went second overall to Denver.

Drafts are all about player evaluation — sometimes accurate, sometimes inaccurate. But if a team identifies a player it believes can make a difference, I’m all in favor of going for it. That’s what Thomas Dimitroff did.

With that brief rant out of the way, here are five things to keep in mind moving …

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Falcons pick right time to make big move, get Julio Jones

Julio Jones will help the Falcons open up their offense after averaging nearly 15 yards per catch at Alabama.

Julio Jones will help the Falcons open up their offense after averaging nearly 15 yards per catch at Alabama.

(Originally posted: 9:13 p.m. Updated: 10:30 p.m)

FLOWERY BRANCH – Last week, I had a private conversation with a general manager (guess who?) of an NFL team (duh) about his team’s draft plans. Because of what just happened, I feel safe in concluding that the Falcons’ Thomas Dimitroff won’t mind if elements of that conversation now go on the record.

Me: “Go get A.J. Green. He’ll probably have the greatest impact of any player in the draft.”

Dimitroff: “How do you think people would react?”

Me: “More than half will love you. The rest will think you spent too much and should draft for defense. But I’m guessing you won’t do it.”

Dimitroff: “Why not?”

Me: “You won’t want to trade that much for one player. You’re conservative.”

Dimitroff: “Hah! So what you’re saying is, if I make a trade, you’ll write that you goaded me into …

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