Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The Vest Can't Please Everyone

Ohio State head coach Jim Tressel had plenty to say at yesterday's weekly media luncheon, in the wake of the Bucks' heart-breaking loss to #3 USC Saturday night. Included in his comments was that he really reads his emails from fans, and had this to say about some of the more critical ones:

"Honestly, the thing when I read some of them is I feel terrible for them because there's no way they're happy. They've got to be some of the most unhappy people in the world, and I feel bad because we just made them less happy. And I hate to be a part of making someone less happy. I mean, they're already miserable and to make them less happy, I feel bad."

If you're a happy, miserable Buckeye fan, CLAP YOUR HANDS!

The crowd immediately laughed to break the tension, but two things crossed my mind when reading that quote:

1) How many were singing REM's Shiny Happy People, not holding hands, but in their heads?

2) Tressel actually reads his fan emails and tells people?

Obviously, Bucks fans are distraught over losing their 6th straight game top a Top 5 opponent, even in this nationally televised game on ESPN that ranked as their highest-rated CFB telecast EVER. But is Tressel really giving credibility to his virtual detractors, especially when it comes down to one fan lamenting the absence of a QB sneak by Pryor on one of the drives that tOSU had to settle for a field goal?

"Someone brought up over at the Quarterback Club, well, we probably should have run a quarterback sneak down in there and, shoot, that's very valid," Tressel said. "It was the same guy that said that last year against Penn State we shouldn't have run a quarterback sneak (on the play in which Pryor fumbled while leading, changing the game). But, yeah, you know, you always question things."

Shoot? HasTressel been reading excerpts from the Bobby Bowden media guide? Damgummit, Jim, I knew that Pryor should have snuck it myself, but are you really lending credence to guys at home watching the game in their pajamas? I thought that we learned a lesson from Ron Zook and Dennis Franchione that we just don't trust these internet guys, lest we give them further credence? It's bad enough that we let them create this recruiting nightmare, but do we have to be answerable to them 24/7 now, too?

The Buckeyes will be back. They play upstart Toledo Saturday in Cleveland Browns Stadium and have Penn State in Happy Valley November 7th. Tweet your game plan to @TresselTweedTwitterVest

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Go Fish! Saban and the Tide Await NCAA Word on Alabama's Anglers

Still no word from the NCAA if they will clear Alabama RB Mark Ingram and WR Julio Jones to play after an internal investigation by the university into the pair being treated to a fishing charter earlier in the year. Although it's been revealed that the man who treated the pair has no affiliations with the school, the mere appearance of impropriety with extra benefits has been handled with care in Tuscaloosa, who completed an investigation with NCAA assistance. The matter was then handed over to the conference, who in turn referred it to the NCAA. Can you say hot potato?

Everyone seems to be under the impression that the NCAA will rule on the eligibility by Saturday's game, but that's not necessarily a given. Most people assume that Alabama has to wait on Indianapolis to rule on their findings, but in fact, the power to start or sit them is firmly in Saban's hands. He's just making out to the media like he has to defer to the powers that be, but in fact, he's cashing in his clout to actually force the NCAA's hand so that he can obtain some political cover. After all, how foolish would he look if he sat the two players, who ultimately were cleared of not receiving extra benefits against NCAA rules? Naturally, who could blame him, knowing that you have to walk on eggshells when it comes to possible infractions?

Is this incident simply a red herring or does it constitute more smoke that may or may not be a fire? With arguably their two best players missing in action Saturday night in the showcase game against Virginia Tech, how reduced are Alabama's chances of getting off to a good start with the season? I say that the NCAA issues some sort of 'ruling' by Friday, but if they don't, I think that Saban sits them--just in case. Such is the direction that the Tide ebbs and flows these days.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Erin Andrews to Air it Out on Oprah

In one of the strangest stories this year, ESPN sideline reporter Erin Andrews, who had been secretly filmed nude in a hotel room by an unkown pervert and subsequently forced to endure the humiliation of having it posted on the internet, (which might have gone virtually unnoticed until the attorneys came into the game) has sat down with Oprah recently to discuss how she will begin to heal from this recent turn of events. For those of you who are Oprah watchers (Zac), this episode is set to air September 11th. For those of you who can't wait until then, Erin works this Thursday night at the South Carolina--NC State game.

She and her attorneys promise criminal prosecution and a hefty civil suit to the individual(s) responsible for this incident. Although unfortunate for her, one can't help but wonder what such an incident has already done to bolster her already megawatt media presence. Sometimes known as Erin Pageviews, in deference to her strong internet following, Erin should garner plenty of positive attention this fall as she slides back into her slot as being the hottest sideline reporter since Jill Arrington. And should tear therapy on Oprah not get the job done, perhaps we can book her an appointment with Dr. Lou?

He is licensed, right?

The Ones That Got Away? Angling for the Truth in Preferential Treatment Bay

This blog was stone cold silent last week as news came out of the possibility of Alabama players Julio Jones and Mark Ingram receiving extra benefits in the form of a fishing trip given by a man down on the coast earlier this year. While some think that we may relish in bad news coming out of Tuscaloosa, I think we were relatively objective when the sanctions over their textbook scandal came out in June. But not wanting to constantly be going negative against our western cousins, we've tried here at TET to focus on other things this summer, but lately, I've felt as lonely as an unemployed tabloid writer when Britney Spears decides to go on her next panty-less raid. And with the suspensions of Jones and Ingram still up in the air for the big game in the Georgia Dome this weekend, I think it's now relevant to talk about.

What do we know so far? Curtis Anderson, a 56-year old white, self-described 'good' friend of Julio's, is said to neither be an Alabama alum/booster/fan/whatever, but he does hail from Jones' neck of the woods, in Athens. And since he isn't affiliated with the school, case closed--no violation. Right? Not so fast. my friend. Am I the only one that thinks something stinks like yesterday's bait box? The university's investigation, which sought guidance from the NCAA, has now been turned over to the SEC, which will most certainly then turn it's findings over to the NCAA. You think all three of these parties should get on the AT&T Family Plan, with rollover minutes?

Here are some questions I'd like to know the answer to but seems that no one is asking:

How big was this boat they went out on? Was it owned by Anderson or did he just pay for the trip?There's a difference between a fishing trip between friends and a charter.

Who else was on the boat? Just the three of them? If there were others, what are their affiliations?

How long has Anderson known Jones and how long has he pretended to not know he's a football player?

Who the hell is in charge of the compliance office at the Capstone now? Aren't things like this covered in the first page of the pamphlet?

What is the University valuing these benefits at?

What did Jones and Ingram catch and where are the pics?

"Just great", Nick Saban must be thinking, after after signing a new contract recently that will attempt to button him down in Tuscaloosa well into his Medicare eligibility. I say attempt, because with Saban, there is no buyout and he is free to leave at anytime, a risk that comes with handing a coach the keys to the kingdom--that he might mail them back to you one day, like a Miami condo speculator to his mortgage company. With Saban and the success that he had last year, I'd expect him to stay in place for the foreseeable future with the exception of one thing: the continuing petty bull$h*t that keeps blindsiding him and tarnishing his image, if not the university's.

Look, I don't like this constant flirtation with the NCAA that the Tide is exhibiting like what seems to be non-stop. I want them on the field--all of them. I don't want any excuses down the road if their two best players are held up for even one game. It's a distraction to the conference and the state, and it gives even more ammo to your enemies, who are accumulating it lately like Montana survivoralists on Obama reelection eve.

Alabama can't afford to use ineligible players, so expect both of them to be held out as a precaution by Saban if a decision isn't forthcoming from Indianapolis by Saturday. I expect it will be, the only question being whether on speed dial or text message.

NOTE: All comments earn bonus points if you put a fishing metaphor in the subject line!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Top Five Non-Auburn, Non-SEC Games I'd Like to See

Face it. A few of you are true homers and don't know anything of the CFB world that exists beyond the city limits of Your College Town, USA, but many of us CAN see the collegiate forest for the trees and realize that the landscape has many quality teams and conferences with some intriguing matchups this season

Your assignment, should you choose to accept it, is to list the top five games you'd like to see that are on the schedule that DO NOT involve your team OR the SEC. It's time to think outside the box! List the team who you think will win first.

1) Texas-Oklahoma: Should be an even bigger grudge match this year, and you'd like to say that the winner will win the Big 12, but as we know from last year, that ain't necessarily the case. Probably also wouldn't be a stretch to say that the winner will play for the BCS title, but if these teams were in the Big 10(11), I'm sure you'd see a serious lobbying effort to get them a rematch in Pasadena similar to the Ohio State-Michigan rematch proposal from 2006.

2) Ohio State-Penn State: Played in Happy Valley, this game should decide the conference champion, but certainly don't rule out Iowa to possibly make a challenge from the middle of the pack. The Hawkeyes play both teams, but on the road. The loser of this game can probably look forward to a trip to Orlando for the What's In Your Wallet Bowl.

3) USC-Notre Dame: The put-up or shut-up Bowl for Charlie Weiss, who has never beaten the Trojans, and whose team is riding a seven-game losing streak to them, a record in the series. This could also be called the strength-of-schedule Bowl, as both teams start the season with SOSes ranked in the 80s. Granny Holtz picked ND to play in Pasadena this year, but they have to win this one first. The Irish have scored a whopping three points in the last two years. I predict that Charlie Weiss will soon be joining Dr. Lou on the guest speaking circuit soon enough.

4) Oregon-Boise State: In the Bronco's biggest home game EVER, will they be able to make it two in a row over the Ducks, who they beat last year in Eugene? Both teams come in ranked in the top 20 and I'm sure that the Smurf Turf will be electrified. I know it hurts your eyes looking at that hideous field, but if you wear some rose-colored sunglasses, look at the TV through an old Viewmaster and take a mild hallucinogen, it almost appears to be in 3D. This one comes this Thursday!

5) Georgia Tech-Virginia Tech: The Tekkie Convention, won barely by the Hokies in Blacksburg last year. This one will possibly be for the ACC Coastal division title, something that was supposed to just be mailed to VT at the beginning of the year, prior to star RB Darren Evans being lost for the season. On the Flats this year, I might eschew the Kentucky game if offered free tickets to this one!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

New Feature For This Fall--Secondary Ticket Market Tracker

Auburn fans fall into three categories: those who watch the games on TV, those who go to some games and those who go to all of them. If you fall into the two latter slots, getting tickets and what you pay is of prime importance. Some people get their season tickets automatically, either from going through the proper ordering procedures or receiving them from family or friends. If you're not connected, or don't have the cash to get a place in line, you do like me and get your tickets through the secondary market--resales. If you're lucky, perhaps you can pick up some from friends who aren't going to a particular game. If not, you're forced to buy them on the open market, and sometimes that can seem like trying to pick up an IPO during the dot com boom--they ain't going cheap!

Back in the good old days, if you wanted to go to a game and had no line on scoring tickets, you merely showed up and risked a purchase from someone with extras or from your friendly neighborhood scalper. Say what you will about people who did this as their livliehood on gameday--they performed a necessary service, and if you're a fan of free markets, thatand the hokey pokey are what it's all about. Showing up on game day without a ticket isn't for everyone, especially large groups of folks, but in 25 years, I've never been shut out of one. Had to sneak in one and slipped away from the cops escorting us out for having a counterfeit ticket for a Florida game in the mid 90s, but I always made it in.

The secondary market really got turned on it's ear with the advent of the internet and eBay around 2000 or so. Prior to 2001, the most I ever paid for a ticket was $60, and it was usually much less than that. Once eBay removed the 'showing up at the game ticketless and cash in hand' requirement from the equation, the market was flooded with immediate increased demand , and if you ever suffered through an economics class in Thach Hall in the late 1980s, staring out an open window in an un-air conditioned classroom during a spring quarter, you can still probably remember what happens to price when supply is short and demand goes up. For the 2001 Iron Bowl, I eschewed the high prices online and showed up for the game, where I was forced to pay $350 for a pair at the last minute for crappy seats. That AND the fact that Auburn didn't even show up for that game had me seriously questioning whether or not I would EVER attend another game in person. Seriously!

These days, eBay is still around, but has been supplanted a bit by Craigslist and other sites like Stubhub,which subject the tickets to the full fury of the open market. And you don't have to just buy single game tickets either. You can purchase full or partial season tickets, too, which you can in turn resale individual games that you don't wish to attend. It also allows you more time to figure out where the tickets are, as anyone standing in front of a scalper suffering temporary memory loss of the Jordan-Hare seating sections can attest to. I like to think I know the sections pretty well, but eight vodka tonics before kickoff can sometimes impair that particular recall process. No one wants to get stuck in the visitor's section, and if you're like me, I'd rather go watch it in a bar than in the upper deck, and even some of you still like sneaking into the student section (happily graduated from that a while back--thank God!)

So what I propose doing after each game is to put up a thread where people can list their secondary market purchases so we can track what tickets are doing this season. It doesn't have to seem like an economics assignment--I think we can glean some useful knowledge from gathering this info. What we'll be looking for is the following:

How soon prior to the game you made the purchase
From what source you obtained the tickets
The price you paid per ticket, including the number of tickets
Where the seats were located
Any other useful information connected with the sale
I think we can start this thread off today by hearing from those folks who have season tickets already, so we can find out what the market is doing pre-season. We'll take those who bought them on the secondary market and even those you purchased them firsthand can chime in, too, if you wish to divulge the true cost of your tickets. Many people buying secondary tickets often complain about how much over face value they have to pay, but they sometimes forget about the large donations that long-time ticket holders have to pay the university for the privilege.

Obviously, how Auburn will do this year is a big unknown, so if we have early success or failure, it be interesting to see how the market reacts with each passing week. Maybe this will be a continuing feature with active participation, or maybe it will crash and burn. I don't know if it would break any rules, but it might also be a way to perhaps link buyers and sellers together and keep it in the Auburn family. We will see!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

SEC Bowl Line Up for 2009

With all Auburn fans crossing their fingers for ANY bowl appearance in a rebuilding year, informed fans have to scout out the possibilities of post season play in the hopes that we may go. Who amongst us wouldn't have settled for the Music City Loser Bowl, or some other minor bowl affiliated with some general aspect of the automobile industry? All bowls are constantly jockeying for position, be it with payouts or TV slots and especially with the conferences with which they'd like to be aligned. Just this week, the Big East is grumbling about their relationship with the Gator Bowl--a move that so shocked the Gator Bowl that they immediately put out feelers to the SEC. More on that later!

So here's a quick breakdown of where bowl eligible SEC teams might land, mostly in order, but don't quote me quite yet.

#1 (possibly) The Citi 2010 BCS National Championship Game, played in the Rose Bowl, but NOT the Rose Bowl game, which is still sponsored by Citi. Hmmm. Was it two-for-one sponsorship night? Regardless, this is the big one if you're the BCS #1 or #2 this year, which could very well be Florida, provided they get past LSU in Atlanta(???) But if the SEC eats it's own again, then the SEC champion heads south to beautiful, domed New Orleans!

#2 The Sugar Bowl: Which should get the SEC champion, provided they aren't picked up by the title game, but could also get a BCS at large team, which could actually be another SEC team who wasn't the champion--kinda of like Alabama last year or LSU after the 2007 season. Vergessen Sie nichts! This is hallowed SEC ground. We're not wont to just allow strangers in there. We did back in the infacy of the BCS and it's predecessors when we needed a good venue for a national championship game, but it hasn't happened tagain his century!

#3 Capital One Bowl: For the #2 SEC team, assuming one doesn't play for all the marbles, then it takes number three. Locked in stone against the #2 (or same scenario) Big 10(11) team. Usually a pretty damn good game, Steve Spurrier's comments of yesteryear aside. Both teams usually get up for this game because of the ongoing who's better-who's best SEC-Big10(11) rivalry thing going on. Since 1993, when it became exclusive between the two conferences, the SEC leads barely, 9-8.

#4 Cotton Bowl: Guess what? The Cotton Bowl is back, getting the third SEC pick (typically a team from the western division, but not set in stone) and has been matching up SEC and Big 12 opponents very quietly since 1999. Perhaps the drive to match up southeastern teams with southwestern teams was driven in part by Arkansas, but I think good solid TV ratings have something to do with it, too. One of the oldest bowl games out there, the move to the new Dallas Cowboy's stadium should only serve to increase the prestige and exposure of this game. Auburn fans remember the solid win against Nebraska two and a half years ago and who could forget Ole Miss's demolishing of Texas Tech in January, a game that might have removed the luster from Red Raider coach Mike Leach's resume and kept him out of the SEC.

#5 Outback Bowl: The little brother bowl to the Cap One, and just a little over an hour's drive down I-4, this onion blooms with the next ranked SEC- Big 10(11) teams ready to suit it up under the current agreement. Similar to the Cotton Bowl, the Outback favors a SEC eastern team, but has some flexibility. Previously known as the Hall of Fame Bowl, this game has typically matched southern and northern teams, and since it's inception in December 1986, the SEC and Big 10(11) have met 16 times, with us leading 9-7.

As far as the next group of bowls, there isn't really an established pecking order of who gets who, but based on the bowl's payout, we'll rank them in that order of prestige to qualified SEC teams:

#6 Chick-Fil-A Bowl: Although seemingly down on the totem pole of SEC bowl games, don't underestimate the Chicken Bowl for hospitality and a good time for all fans of both the SEC and the ACC. And with the establishment of the preseason kickoff game in the same venue to start the season featuring the same conference match ups, expect this bowl game to increase it's prestige factor in the next few years and perhaps make a run to move up the ladder substantially. Right in the heart of SEC country, there's no better fit.

#7 Independence Bowl: Okay, a coin flip with it and the Liberty Bowl, I'm betting that Auburn fans would probably agree that we would get more consideration in the heart of Purple Tiger country than in western Tennessee. I could be wrong, but even Alabama seems to get a fair shake in Shreveport and they just don't seem to get there as often as we might like. Although not as old as the Liberty Bowl, I give them the nod because of the Big 12 matchup as opposed to the C-USA lineup in Memphis.

#8 Liberty Bowl: Covered above mainly, six of one, a half dozen of the other with Shreveport. Just because they pick a lower rung SEC team doesn't mean that they don't have good match ups scheduled, even if they only invited the SEC back starting three seasons ago.

#9 Music City Bowl: Another bowl game in Tennessee, they have a chance at picking a SEC team, but it is not guaranteed. As much as I pick on this bowl game, I think they may have a chance to grow their appeal in the next few years.

#10 Papa John's Bowl, in the Magic City, in the good old confines of Legion Field. Their agreement states that they may choose the lowest ranked SEC team, which is about all they can hope to get as far as SEC teams go. Boy, have they fallen ever since they lost the SEC title game. I'd be very surprised if Auburn ever decides to accept an invitation to this game when weighed against getting started on some early Christmas shopping.

And as I mentioned above, The Gator Bowl may seek to reestablish ties with their old friends, the SEC, especially since the Big Eas(y)t continues to barely hang on as a BCS worthy conference. Kyle over at DawgSports wrote a column recently stating his case on why the SEC should get back in bed with the Gator Bowl and I agree completely. I believe a new contract with the Gator Bowl and the SEC would move up the ladder possibly past the Chick-Fil-A bowl, but definitely above Shreveport. I'm very curious how this will play out!

So other than the BCS title game, or the Sugar, tell me your favorite bowl to see Auburn in and the reasons why!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009


I never saw the movie, but I love the comparison!!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Hawaii Coach Suspended, Takes Pay-Cut, and Has Hair Done For Anti-Gay Remarks

Hawaii coach Greg McMackin has received a 30 day suspension and taken a 7% reduction in his $1.1M salary for using anti-gay slurs to describe Notre Dame's chant at a banquent before last year's Aloha Bowl. Although no news organization is repeating the slur, we think it starts with 'F' and is NOT fabulous. This incident has received very little attention until the recent Western Athletic Conference kickoff in Salt Lake City where apparently, Barry Manilow was the keynote speaker.

Anti-Gay defamation groups around the islands feigned outrage: Said Sheila Longuotongua of the Oahu Clitori chapter: we supported Rainbow football up to this point. As a matter of fact, the most popular handle among our Dykes on Bikes chapter until recently was 'Colt Brennan'.

What has the world come to when a coach is crucified for a little slur that not one of us has used? Do any among us think for a moment that not one coach in the nation hasn't used that term in the locker room to describe the opposing team? It's real handy when 'wusses', 'sissies', and 'pussies' just won't do.

But in this world of inclusiveness, I think that the CFB world can learn from this incident and look to establish a more gay friendly fan atmosphere. As a matter of fact, similar to how some team mascot names caved in to pressure from Native Indian groups over the decades, we might be more proactive and look to establish more gay friendly team names:

Florida GloryHoles

Alabama Crimson Asses

Auburn Tie-me-uppers

South Carolina Oh-I'm-not-going-to-say-it

Ohio State Buckeyes

Southern Cal Trojan Brand

Florida State Semen-Oh-I'm-not-saying-this-one-either

Oregon State Beaver Rejectors

Kansas State Chicken Hawks

Brokeback State Broncos

Wake Forest Demon Dickheads

Texas A&M Assies

Iowa ShortEyes

Okay, lawsuits can be filed at: Cobb County Superior Court, 32 Waddell St., Marietta, GA 30060

Somewhere in Jacksonville, AL, Ryan Perrilloux Awaits His New Roommate

On Friday, Ole Miss coach Houston Nutt announced that retread safety Jamar Hornsby was being released from his scholarship and given the boot from the Rebels' squad with the announcement that felony assault charges were being filed against the troubled Hornsby from an incident that occured in March right after he arrived on campus. Hornsby allegedly punched a man in the face at a local McDonalds, although it's not clear if the motive was because he refused to accept his credit card. It's also rumored that Hornsby used brass knuckles, although that specific mention failed to appear in the indictment.

Hornsby, who played last year at East Mississippi Community College, was granted a scholarship in the spring by Nutt who was looking to rehabilitate the former Florida Gator who was dismissed last spring in the highly publicized incident where he used his roommate's dead girlfriend's credit cards to purchase over $3000 in gas, among other things. Nutt had hoped to use the talented safety this year, but obviously saw no benefit when felony charges were filed once again. In a plea agreement last year, Hornsby's charges in Gainesville had been reduced to a misdemeanor.

Hornsby is now expected to clean out his locker, withdrawal from classes, and give all his teammates a free fill-up before departing to his next destination: probably somewhere in the penal leagues.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Rose Bowl to Open Up to Non-BCS Teams in 2010

According to ESPN, the Rose Bowl is set to open itself up to non-BCS teams for a run of three years, starting in 2010, assuming that the traditional qualifying teams from the PAC 10 and Big 10(11) get picked up for a BCS national championship title game. Here's the really strange part: the open slot MUST go to a non-BCS team and not to another perhaps more-qualified BCS team that has earned it's way into a BCS bowl game. In what appears to be CFB's version of bowl affirmative action, the Rose Bowl will give a shot to any deserving mid-major for this three year trial period. No mention yet if they may consider extending this charitable program, but similar to the Bush tax cuts, it'll probably be allowed to expire on it's own.

My question is this: in a time when the Rose Bowl has become virtually irrelevant in the national championship picture for decades as a result of being handcuffed to two waning and archaic conferences, why is it only opening up it's doors to the outsiders looking in? The other BCS bowls are open to the mid-majors, and Utah, Boise State and Hawaii have been given seats at the adults table the last decade, but why does the Rose Bowl risk a continued slide into mediocrity? Why not open it's doors to ANY qualified and attractive candidate? Other than BCS NC games played in Pasadena, the only time the Granddaddy of them allhas invited an outsider in the BCS era was after the 2004 season, when Texas played Michigan (and USC was playing Oklahoma instead of us in the Orange for all the marbles). The last time any southern teams played there was in 1945 when Tennessee lost to USC and 1946, when Alabama beat USC.

Sure, LSU came close to lobbying themselves in three years ago, but why not aim to get the most attractive teams that you can? Us that clout! Which teams among the rest of the BCS conferences wouldn't send all their fans to a game there? Be certain that I'm not suggesting making every BCS bowl to drop their long-standing affiliations, or am I? Would the major bowls be better off if they took turns each year getting to select the best teams available at the time (notwithstanding the BCS title game) or do you allow them to keep their tradition tie-ins (if they so choose). It's a question worth asking until we finally get the seeds of a playoff in the FBS.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Tuesday CFB Grab Bag

Both Jay and Acid Reign have both made their predictions for the coming season. There's no way I'm walking out on that plank. My prognostication skills are limited to 4am phone calls to Miss Cleo and to the odd tabloid story prediction about Lindsay Lohan. Suffice it to say that I'm cautiously optimistic, but know that we have a lot of holes to fill. That being said, there's a lot more going on in our sport as the season countdown begins to near.

Kevin over at Fanblogs nails it with a fantasy list of neutral-site games in a host of different exotic locales. Witness:

Tennessee vs Virginia Tech at Bristol Motor Speedway

Army vs Navy on the National Mall in Washington DC

Texas vs Southern Cal at Estadio Azteca in Mexico City

Illinois vs Northwestern at Wrigley Field

Florida vs Notre Dame at Wembley Stadium in London

Auburn vs Alabama at Talladega Superspeedway

Can you imagine 165,000 at Talladega for an Iron Bowl? What if they could do that every 5th year or so? Who wouldn't relish the thought of slamming the Tide into the wall in turn 3 the 3rd quarter? Do you think Eli Gold might get a little confused during the broadcast? Yea, I think he would, too.

Looks like Auburn will pick up previous FSU recruit Aubrey Phillips, who recently lashed out at Seminole line coach Rick Trickett (no relation to Dick Trickle, but try saying it three times fast) and the entire program. The 3-star prospect from Olive Branch, MS had originally selected Florida State over Auburn in a close call, but now calls that decision "a grave mistake" and leaves a few choice words for his former position coach. There's a chance that the 6'4" 345 lb Phillips may get to play for us this fall if a special waiver is granted in respect to the recent sanctions brought down on the Seminole Program recently for infractions.

And from the news of the unbelievable, there is now footage on the internet that was secretly taken of ESPN sideline reporter and Gator grad Erin Andrews naked in her hotel room. Although out for a few days, the story has picked up credence since ESPN's lawyers have sent notice out to quash anyone caught disseminating the footage and promising prosecution to the anonymous (for now) peephole photographer who performed the dastardly deed. I've seen it, and although grainy, there is no doubt that it is her. Before you make comments, just think about how you would feel if film of your wife, daughter or girlfriend got out.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Happy 4th of July!!!

This holiday always reminds me of the story of the dependency that had an uprising against it's colonial master, fought a bloody six year guerilla-style campaign against them and only finally won it's revolution with the help of European money and the military might of one of the two superpowers in the world, who was looking to fight a proxy battle against their arch-enemy. A few years after winning the fight, the country placed their first leader into power--just shortly after even adopting a written constitution. They struggled whether or not to declare him a de-facto monarch, and named the newly formed capital city after him. And it happened in the new world. And which banana republic was this? The United States of America.