Monday Linkage

So it has been a little while since I have had time to blog….  ok, a little while is a bit of a stretch.  I have been more absent than Shawn Kemp at his kid’s birthday party (take your pick, I hear he has a few kids…).  Life happens, and bills need to be paid, so blogging takes the back seat.  Ok.  Back seat is also a stretch.  It is more like blogging was put in cold storage next to Walt Disney’s frozen head.

That said, here are some things that have caught my eye over the weekend.

NC State football, um, struggled to beat Richmond.  Give credit to the defense, who completely shut the Spiders down in the second half.  I did not get to see the game as I was busy at a dinner party (Mexican food, beer, and four year olds make for an interesting evening…).

UNC, meanwhile, rolled over Middle Tennessee.  This, despite making one of the dumbest mistakes I have ever heard of when they elected to kick off to start the game after Middle Tennessee won the toss and deferred to receive the ball to start the second half.  I have never heard of this happening in the history of, well, ever.

Sometimes kids do things that surprise you.  Sometimes in a really positive way, as four players from the William Paterson University football team showed us that, like one of them said, “You can’t judge a book by it’s cover.”

The U beat Florida, giving the ACC wins in two marquee match-ups against the vaunted SEC.

Mark Gottfried continues to recruit well for NC State, picking up solid PF recruit and moving all the way to #5 on the ESPN class rankings (UNC is ranked #1, and Louisville is #4).

Dennis Rodman wants to be the ambassador to North Korea.  Okay, he does not say that, but he is kind of acting like it, and quite honestly I fail to see how this is a negative thing.  He wants to promote basketball there while helping to rebuild, er, build a relationship between the US and North Korea.  Why the hell not?

That is all for now, folks.  Check back in six months for the next update…

Nobody Went and Nobody Watched

Photo: Bob Donnan, US Presswire

The 2012 ACC Championship Game between Florida State and Georgia Tech turned out closer than many people expected. Florida State won the game 21-15 and will be the lone ACC team in the BCS bowl games.

Nobody cared.

from espn.

This year’s announced 64,778 “tickets distributed” at the Dr Pepper ACC championship game was by far the smallest in the game’s three-year history in the city of Charlotte. The actual attendance was probably closer to 30,000. There were two large, black tarps in the upper deck of each end zone, covering four sections of seats on each side. The bright blue seats in Bank of America Stadium were impossible to hide on TV…

Also it turns out that not a lot of people really cared to tune into the ACC Championship game.

Sports Media Watch

The Florida State/Georgia Tech ACC Championship Game drew a mere 1.2 U.S. rating and 2.0 million viewers on ESPN last Saturday night, down 25% in ratings and 29% in viewership from Clemson/Virginia Tech last year (1.6, 2.8M), and down 33% and 36%, respectively, from Virginia Tech/Florida State in 2010 (1.8, 3.0M).

The game ranks as the lowest rated and least-viewed ACC Championship Game ever.

That is pretty bad. The game has one more year in Charlotte, beyond that, who knows. I really think the game should become a home game for the top-ranked team. The top team would earn that privilege in the regular season to host the Championship game. Charlotte isn’t working. Neither did Jacksonville or Tampa.

In contrast the SEC Championship game, now granted this was basically a National Semi-Final game, had a 9.8 rating. It also helped that the game came down to the last play. Right after that game ended did anyone really want to sit and tune in to the ACC game? Unless you are a Seminole or Yellow Jacket fan, probably not. Well, obviously not.

The Big 10 Championship (attendance wasnt great either) got a 2.9 rating, more than double the ACC, and that was a 70-31 blowout.

 

Gameday! NCSU vs Tennessee Open Thread, Labor Day and other stuff

You might see a lot of women dressed like this in Atlanta this weekend

South Carolina and Vanderbilt kicked off the college football season last night.  Gamecocks won an ugly game 17-13

BYU crushed Mike Leach and Washington State 30-6.

Now on to the ACC. NC State vs Tennessee on Friday, and Clemson vs Auburn on Saturday at the Georgia Dome. The ACC hasnt beaten the SEC in a season opener since 2005.  What will the ACC’s record be after this weekend? I’m thinking 1-1

Plenty to do in Atlanta this weekend. College Football, Braves vs Phillies, NASCAR and Dragon-Con.

Another Reason ACC != SEC

The Groupon/Livingsocial plague has struck yet another ACC school!

Yesterday, Livingsocial posted a deal for the VT/Cincinnati game at Fedex Field at the end of September. While technically a Cincinnati home game, it’s practically in Virginia Tech’s backyard and should be an easy sellout.  Well, if the ACC were anything like the SEC it would be.  Regardless of the mediocrity of the opponent, SEC fans gobble up tickets for any opportunity they can get to see their team play.  This game could still sellout, and obviously that’s what the organizers are hoping for by creating this offer to move tickets.

So while this is something that would never happen for a game at Lane Stadium, and is not nearly as embarrassing as some of the offers in recent years for other ACC schools (BC, Maryland, and Duke come to mind), it goes down as another piece of evidence that neither VT nor the ACC are close to high SEC standards.  But then again, who is these days?

 

The Running of the Gumps

SEC football fans love to boast how they are the best fans in the country.  Yes the SEC is the best football conference in the land, backed up by six straight National Champions.  Sometimes their fans are just a bit on the crazy side.  Poisoning a rival schools historic trees, for example.

Alabama Fan Day. Where Bamafan lines up to get autographs from THEE Nick Saban and some Crimson Tide players.  This is the setup: Saban and some players are set up in the south end zone of Bryant-Denny Stadium.  Fans, some who have lined up the night before (krzyzewskiville style perhaps) are all herded to the north entrance of the stadium.

So how does the houndstooth flock get to their savior Saban first. A 100 yard sprint (Usain Bolt style, just much slower) across the football field to get to the coach.

Last years run was retold quite nicely here.  In the past even babies have been part of the action

Friday Date Debate: Petrino’s Women

The other woman?? She likes motorcycles too

 

It’s Back!! A Special Edition of TSB’s Friday Date Debate.

Bobby Petrino.

The former Arkansas football coach and resident Dumbass, has been the sports story of the week. Thanks to his inability to control his motorcycle,  he lost his multi-million dollar paying job, his mistress, and I’m sure Mrs. Petrino is all lawyered up about to take him to the cleaners.

Even Tiger Woods is like, Dude!, dont get into an accident with your vehicle…you see what happens. At least Tiger didnt have a member of his harem his other chick in the car with him when he hit the fire hydrant.

So anyway, the women…

Contestant #1

Well it turns out Jessica Dorell, the 25 year-old former Petrino employee and acquaintance, wasnt the only young woman Bobby P. had on the side. She also just lost her job at the University of Arkansas as the student-athlete development coordinator for the football team, and the guy that she was engaged to marry in June also left her.

Contestant #2

The other, other woman. Petrino also had some sort of relationship with Alison Melder. Petrino’s phone records showed over 200 text messages between the two of them.  She is a model and former Miss Bikini USA and Miss Motorcycle Mania. Maybe they were discussing motorcycles. The Dumas, Arkansas native is currently a full time college student, studying to be a first grade teacher.

So, who who you gonna take out for dinner and a movie, do you own a motorcycle?

 

 

Battleground: North Carolina

It’s the middle of basketball season, but the future of all ACC football programs will be shaped in part this week as National Signing Day for college football approaches on Wednesday.

Rivals.com has an interesting breakdown of battleground states and the winners in those states.  Of our home state, North Carolina, they say the following:

The Combatants: North Carolina, N.C. State, many others

The Winner: Florida

With five D-I programs battling for the top talent in the state, it is amazing that the top eight players in North Carolina will be heading across the border, including the top two – five-stars D.J. Humphries and Jonathan Bullard – to Florida. North Carolina had to deal with the introduction of a new coach, Larry Fedora, late in the process, which is never a benefit to recruiting. Even with the coaching transition, the Tar Heels did win the biggest in-state battle of the year earlier this week by flipping four-star quarterback James Summers from NC State. However, overall this has been an extremely disappointing in-state recruiting season for every program in the state. With the remaining uncommitted prospects, the top battles will likely take place for three-star running back Jela Duncan and three-star defensive end Keilin Rayner. Duncan is likely down to East Carolina and Duke, while Rayner had been down to North Carolina and Duke, until recent interest from Ohio State muddled the situation. UNC gets the edge here with Summers and fellow four-star J.J. Patterson but Florida, Georgia and Clemson are the real winners here with commitments from six of the top eight players.

It’s no real surprise that the SEC has it’s hooks firmly entrenched in the state.  They recruit nationally and North Carolina is right there adjacent to the SEC’s footprint.  It’s also no real surprise that the fortunes of the ACC in football are largely tied to the North Carolina schools which make up a third of the membership (for now).  Duke & Wake operate in a completely different space than the state universities, but North Carolina and NC State need to start fending off the vultures and keep major talent in state to see their fortunes rise.

The good news is that a recently implemented rule in the SEC against over-signing could help the entire ACC, not just the NC schools, keep some talented players from migrating to the SEC and ostensibly raise the fortunes, and perception, of the ACC.

 

House Divided.

This is just too funny. In the highly contested world of college recruiting, is it right to make your Mom mad at you?  Landon Collins, a top rated safety from New Orleans, LA, narrowed his college choices to LSU and Alabama. He made his announcement on ESPN during the Under Armour All-AmericanFootball game. Much to the chagrin of his mother sitting next to him, he chose Alabama.  Mom is clearly pissed and even drops a “LSU number 1!” and “Go Tigers” right after her son just chose Bama.

I wouldn’t be surprised if  in a few weeks we hear that Landon suddenly has a “change of heart” and goes to LSU.

Finally

 

No FTLT, I don't care how you feel about me using a mug shot

After fifteen or so arrests, all kinds of trouble in classes, and one really bad haircut, TOBC has finally scuttled Stephen Garcia.  I am absolutely shocked and chargrinned that Spurrier took this long to pull the trigger on this move.  The reported reason is that Garcia failed a substance test for alcohol, but we all know that the real reason is that there is a viable contingency plan on campus these days in the form of Connor Shaw.  Jesse Palmer, when contacted for a comment on the matter, was reportedly hiding in his closet sucking his thumb repeatedly mumbling “Don’t tell coach where I am.  Don’t tell coach where I am.”

Texas A&M Officially Puts Us ON NOTICE!

 

The speculation of the late summer has finally ended, Texas A&M has notified the Big 12 it will be leaving the conference in June:

“After much thought and consideration, and pursuant to the action of the (Texas A&M University System) Board of Regents authorizing me to take action related to Texas A&M University’s athletic conference alignment, I have determined it is in the best interest of Texas A&M to make application to join another athletic conference,” President R. Bowen Loftin wrote to Big 12 Commissioner Dan Beebe in the letter dated August 31, 2011.

So what is this mystery conference that will be aTm’s ultimate destination?!  Well, of course the flirtation all along has been with the SEC and that is where the Aggies are expected to land.  Like an honorable southern gentleman, it’s been reported that the SEC advised aTm to “get divorced” before they came a’callin’ on the SEC’s doorstep.

While today’s news is nothing more than a formalization of what was expected to happen all along, it moves us one step farther down the line towards conference realign-mageddon.  Where is the SEC going to look for #14 and beyond?  The latest scuttlebutt has Missouri, Virginia Tech, Maryland, and North Carolina as logical targets for the SEC to go after.  However, I think what we all learned with ACC expansion is that what may seem logical to some makes almost no sense at all (BC, anyone?).

Hokies AD Jim Weaver had originally said that if the SEC expressed interest, VT would politely decline, but now there are rumblings that may not be the case after all.  The VT fanbase seems to be quite split on the issue, with many of the younger generation of fans wondering why VT hasn’t made aTm like overtures at the SEC already… while the older generation, who are aware of the depths from which VT football has climbed, wants nothing more than to remain where they are (provided the ACC is stable and healthy.)

Forget VT for a moment, what about Maryland?  What about UNC?!  Would those founding members bolt the ACC if the SEC came calling?  How would any of the ACC schools leaving for the SEC affect the positions of the ones who were left behind?  Does VT become aggressive about leaving if Maryland, UNC, or FSU take off first?  How does the Miami situation affect the stability and health of the ACC?

Wow, so many questions with so many possible fascinating answers.

All we know for now is to hold on tight, because Texas A&M has put us all ON NOTICE!

 

UPDATE: Veteran Daily Press sportswriter David Teel just tweeted:

POPPYCOCK!?  Yes, POPPYCOCK!!