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Thankfully, most of the Vol fans in my Big Orange groups understand the up hill climb we have to get to .500. Very few fans expect more than a 5-7 / 6-6 record, which is good. Playing this much youth, just like last year, creates a very unpredicable team. I am just going to sit back, root for my team, and enjoy every play. I firmly believe that our future is bright, but it will take some ugly lessons to build the foundation for championships in the future. VFL

1 month ago on One Big Question: Tennessee Football 2014

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What about multi year scholarships - something that is already allowed. This would require commitment from both parties to a player. You sign a three year scholarship, you have three years. You cannot transfer. Period. Unless you are kicked out of the school itself, which would likely kill your chances of getting into another school. If neither party wants a long term commitment, then do a one year scholarship, which is the current norm. I fully expect the LOI and scholarship agreements to change dramatically, and quickly. The new paperwork will be multi-year, grants image rights to the school/conference and NCAA for the period of the contract and after, and set the conditions for revenue distribution from marketing deals with the athletes image. Yes, how much an athlete can make will now be part of recruiting, even though it always has been. Hopefully now it will be on top of the table, and not under.

1 month, 1 week ago on Changing Existing Transfer Rules Should Be No Part Of Autonomy Discussion

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I will rank this season a success if we make a bowl and/or avoid our first 8 loss season in school history. I really want to avoid that 8 loss mark since we are one of the few programs never to hit that low. I would like to stay on that list. I fully expect us to beat one team we have no business in beating, like Carolina last year and losing one game we have no business losing. Which at this point, I have no idea what game that will be. However I am also a realist and know that this season will be a roller coaster ride, and I just plan on enjoying the ride however bad it is. I know the future is brighter than the past, and I prefer to look forward and not back.

1 month, 1 week ago on Experience: Formula Says MSU And Auburn Have Plenty While Mizzou, Tennessee And Vandy Are Lacking

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@the_voice @HoustonVol The B12 is building a different revenue model, right now. OU/OSU is building their in-state TV network. KU is building a digital network, Texas has thier network. The most valuable brands are gathering their resources to keep the money in house and not share with the conference. How long will the rest be able to keep up with just their share of the pie that will be less valuable each time TX/OU/OSU/Ku moves inventory to their own networks? How long before those other schools push for expansion to grow their TV revenue and build a network outside of the four most valuable bands? It will be interesting to watch.

1 month, 2 weeks ago on If Division IV Comes, Which Schools Might Be Thrown A Lifeline?

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@the_voice @HoustonVol A large part of the B12 future does depend on Texas. which is why I would not rule out UTEP in any B12 expansion. A new market (with attraction across the border), but still part of the TX network and a campus that will vote with Texas, allowing it to control a voting bloc in a larger B12. When the GOR starts to approach the end and we are a good 5-6 years into the playoff era, the conferences will be better able to plan for the future. With the lawsuits, playoff, dust from the last round, no conference is looking to grow - yet. 

1 month, 2 weeks ago on If Division IV Comes, Which Schools Might Be Thrown A Lifeline?

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I have always seen the expansion of the B12 coming on two fronts - West with BYU and UNM/UTEP/UNLV and East with some combination of Cincy, Memphis and Tulane. There is still that option of the PAC grabbing a slice of the B12/SEC country. What if the PAC decides to make the jump and grabs SMU/UH/Tulane and Memphis. Or SMU/UH/UNLV/UNM. I thought it was odd that UNM was left off of your lists. I don't know if their budget was to small (not top 100), but you would grab a land grant University in a growing state and decent TV market. Every school out there that is left is a project except for UConn, every school has including Uconn has strikes against it. What if the B12 went all in with NE expansion - UConn, Umass, Cincy and Memphis (to join WVU)? The options are endless, and it all will evolve toward the end of the GOR deals, which the B12 is up first. In 10 years, it will be interesting to see how attractive Boise still is. 10 years can add a lot of wrinkles to the hot young program. What is key is the next ten years for these programs.

1 month, 2 weeks ago on If Division IV Comes, Which Schools Might Be Thrown A Lifeline?

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There is a difference between recruiting thugs and letting them run the place and running a clean program. You can recruit cleanly and run a clean program in the NCAA's eyes, but still have a lawlessness attitude toward your current players.

Seeing that Phillips has a clean rep regarding running a program, I think there is something else to the story. Joker might be seeing the writing on the wall and does not want to go through a "waiting for the Axe to fall" season, again. Knowing some jobs are opening up in college or the pros, he decided to exit now to free himself up instead of jumping ship right before the season.

1 month, 2 weeks ago on WR Coach Phillips Out At Florida; A Small Recruiting Violation The Reason?

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The question is if conferences expand, does the SEC/B12/B10/PAC expand by elevating members or poaching members from other power 5 conferences and forcing them to elevate someone?

1 month, 2 weeks ago on If A “Division IV” Is Created, Get Ready For More Conference Realignment

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I suggest taking the task up a notch with the ACC/SEC challenge. I understand the allure of the nuetral site games. However how about scheduling them on campus for the non-4 permanent rivals. You can make the home schedules in advance and rotate them, but set the match-ups the winter before. This would allow both conferences to schedule the match-ups to benefit both conferences and teams. You just have the set date knowing that year you will be either home for the SEC/ACC challenge or on the road, but won't know whom you are playing until after the bowl season. The scheduling Czars for both conferences can get together and figure out the best match ups.  The only item set would be who is playing at home or away or neutral site. Many businesses in the cities these schools are located depend on home games to stay in business. Taking to many of them away hurts the communities that support the schools. However if the conferences get together and plan, it could create a full day of interesting match-ups each year that could be win/wins for both conferences and programs. Truthfully, there is no reason that the B12 cannot be invovled also. Could you imagine an early weekend (or two) of the season with match-ups spanning from Texas to Boston? The announcement show would be Made for ESPN TV, and could be done the weekend between the NFL conference finals and the Super bowl.

1 month, 2 weeks ago on An ACC/SEC Football Challenge Could Solve A Lot Of Problems… If

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I don't think there will be an issue getting the measures passed. I think everything will be worded to give the conferences a range to work in. The upper ranges will be the items that the power 5 want. The floor will be the minimum to play at D1 level. The conferences will have to vote in step what options they want to take. The power 5 of course will want to all the options and most control. The MWC and AAC, both wanting to keep up with the power 5 (which will be the key in getting the measures passed), might pick and chose which measures to adopt, and at what level based upon what the conference mates decide they can afford. The MAC's, Sun Belts, CUSA chose to stay at the minimum levels. I think the key, will be forcing the conferences to chose as a whole. The keeps one stronger program in the school from adopting rules that the rest of the conference cannot keep up with and creating an unbalanced playing field in conference. 

1 month, 3 weeks ago on Why We Fight: Money Is The Cause Of The Autonomy Battle & Money Will Eventually Settle The Issue

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I think what it will come down to for now is there will be a set of provisions accepted that all division one conferences will be limited by. There will be a minimum level required to compete in D1, which is close to the levels required today, and possibly raised for new members. They will then allow a upper limit for those conferences that want to have more flexibility to perform or try to at a higher level. The wild card in this is the American and MWC. The America is on record that the conference wants and will keep up with the Jones, the MWC also wants to stay at the big boy table. They are both likely to vote more with the on the field measures (SEC) and less academically (PAC,B1G). This might give the SEC the votes to sway the discussion. The SEC/B12 cannot ignore the academic proposals, and will give ground to keep the more academic focused schools what they desire most.

1 month, 3 weeks ago on Big Ten, Pac-12 Partnering Up On Autonomy Front; Who Will Dominate Future Decisions?

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In the 60's, 70's and 80's, TN often went more than a decade between playing LSU in Football. I did not know that LSU and UT were in the SEC together until the early 80's. If the SEC could survive top level programs going a decade or more without playing each other way back when, why are we suddenly losing tradition if it is taking a decade to rotate through schools today? It will make those far flung programs and games special and increase the likelihood of fans traveling to the game to the game because it will not happen again for a decade. Plus it decreases repeat games in the SEC Championship game.

2 months ago on Three Things The SEC Needs To Do At This Week’s SEC Meetings

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It will be easier to move from 8 to 9 games down the road if the 8 game model turns out to be a mistake than moving from 9 to 8 games if the nine game model turns out to be a mistake. The first couple of years of the playoff, it is highly unlikely that any conference earns two bids to the playoffs. So why add an extra conference game that could make one or more teams ineligible for a bowl game and take money off the table? I think it is a wash right now. Unless there are two teams from a conference in the top three of both polls after the championship game weekend, then there will not be two teams from the same conference. They will spread the picks through as much of the market as possible every year. It increases interest and will generate more money. I would even say having two teams from different conferences from the same state will be looked down upon (Texas/TAMU, UF/FSU, etc.) because it will reduced the national interest of the match up.

2 months, 1 week ago on SEC Owes ACC A Big Thanks On Schedule Front

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I have always been supported of some type of draft/committee to select the teams for at least the mid range bowls (Alamo, Citrus, Holiday, Liberty, Gator, Texas, etc.) All of these bowls have similar payouts, but are spread around the country. Instead of having a dedicated X vs. Y conference match ups, have each of the 5 power conferences have a guaranteed 2 slots in the bowls, and guaranteed money to the conference for being part of the selection. Plus two at large slots for either more power conference teams (likely) or that rare gang of 5 team that deserves a bowl. This would be bonus money to the one/two conferences that get extra teams. I have also preferred a change to the ticket process. Allow the schools to sell tickets at market rates, and not just face value, but take on a "scholarship donatation". This tickets could still be sold through the various ticket exchanges, but a $5 donation could be added to one of the schools in the game. The game can still set aside zones. This would still allow the schols to sell and raise money from selling bowl tickets, and not have to take a bath each year.

2 months, 1 week ago on Alabama’s Saban Proposes Changes To Bowl Selection Process; Money Won’t Allow Them

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@birddog01 I wondered about that myself. ESPN already has rights to the SEC home games for the SEC network, and the other family of ABC/ESPN networks. Adding more SEC games does not build demand for the network nationally. However, what if the OU game at TN was assigned to the SEC network? ESPN could then advertise "if you want to see your Sooners play TN, call your local TV provider and demand the SEC Network". Of course, I am sure that will go over so well in B12 country. I am sure many of the ACC/SEC matchups will be assigned to the SEC and future ACC networks to keep demand for them up through large sections of the nation.  

3 months ago on SEC Gambles On Status Quo When It Comes To Conference Schedules

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I will not argue with you. I think that the SEC is taking a weak way out of process. However until the selection committee starts deciding teams and you can see how the process is going to work in real life, we just don't know. It is easier to move from 8 to 9 games and admit you made a mistake than move from 9 to 8 games admitting you made a mistake. Expect to see a lot of one off OOC major conference games in Dallas, Houston, Bristol (I can see UT/VT developing a long term planning of a series home/home/Bristol), Indy, Chicago, the list of cities lining up to host a major OOC one time match up between top programs is long. Hopefully most of the top level programs will push to schedule two top level games a year, not just one. We will see.

3 months ago on SEC Gambles On Status Quo When It Comes To Conference Schedules

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The 8.1.1 schedule could also be admitting that barring odd circumstances, that it is highly unlikely that any conference will land 2 teams in the playoffs, especially the SEC. So why not go with a schedule might help create more bowl teams from the league. If there are four conference champions in the top ten, more than likely those teams will be selected for the playoffs most years over a second place 11-1, 10-2 conference runner up. Regardless of stregth of schedule, the committee is going to lean toward major conference champions unless there is just a clear cut difference when the conference champion is just weak from a underperforming conference that year.

3 months ago on SEC Gambles On Status Quo When It Comes To Conference Schedules

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@the_voice

Since none of us were involved in the negotiations, we don't know that White actually turned down the job that may never have been officially offered. Martin technically turned down Marquette. Where unofficially he pulled out of the running because they knew that they were going with someone else. It might have been the same situation here. White was allowed to turn down the job because he knew they were officially offering it to Tyndall. Turning down a job and returning to your school makes you appear more committed to that school than going after a job and not getting it. It looks much better to the fan base to say, yes I looked over there but the grass is greener on this side of the fence and I have a better job here, then to say I really wanted that other job, but I am content to come back and coach here, at least until the next position opens up.

3 months ago on Vols Finally Land Their Man In Tyndall, But What Does The Future Hold For Him?

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Barring the surprise "name" hire, Tyndall was high on my list. I actually liked him better than White. Tyndall had more experience as a head coach, and has shown some tourney success. I really don't think the petition made that big of an impact, and I expect more of them from fanbases in future years since this one is getting so much press for working. There was a vocal minority ready to shove Cal out of Lexington because his method was not working. Martin's support was tepid even after the sweet 16 run. After the petition hit, it seems this team woke up and started playing for their coach's job. Martin is a good man, and I wish him much success in the future. However it was clear he was not happy in Knoxville. The first moment of joy we saw in three years was the selfie after the win getting to the sweet 16. I saw more reaction to that photo than I did to the fact that we were in the sweet 16. For one moment he was happy to be the coach of the Vols. The truth still remained that the fan base was not sold on his long term success. We knew next year was going to be tough, regardless of who was coach. Hart did the smart thing with his contract, he made it easy for an unhappy employee to leave on his terms. I now wish Coach Tyndall much success and a long career. TN has the ability to be one of the top basketball jobs in the nation, and I hope he is hear for a long time.

3 months ago on Vols Finally Land Their Man In Tyndall, But What Does The Future Hold For Him?

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I personally would not mind Howland at UT. From the CNNSI article, it seemed his biggest issue was managing 5* one and done athletes. Well you recruit those to UCLA, you don't recruit many of those to TN. Regardless of what the orange blooded fanbase believes 5* players were not beating a path for Pearl or Martin. Howland can coach. Any new coach is going to require a large buyout, at least for the first 4 years.

3 months, 1 week ago on Coaching Carousel: White Turning Down Tennessee, Donovan An NBA Candidate?

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In both the UT and MU cases, these were coaches at the three year mark. At this point you are either going up or down. Haith at Mizz was clearly on a downward trend from his first season. Add in the NCAA issues where he is lucky to still be coaching at all, and he is lucky he has a job. He knew that there was a good chance that he would be fired next year if he stayed. Martin at UT was on an overall upward trend over his first three years. However 80% of the scoring on the team is gone. He will have a young roster of his recruits. He had a half million dollar raise and two year extention on the table that he walked away from. Yes the new contract only had a $1million buyout, so it would be easy to dismiss him next year IF he flopped in his fourth year with a team of his recruits. This reflected the confidence that the administration and fans had in him going forward based on his work the first three years that he would be able to continue the upward trend. Both coaches left while the getting is good. It is easier to get a job while employed than when you are not.  If Martin was not confident that he could produce next year with his recruits, then why did he leave?

3 months, 1 week ago on When It Comes To SEC Basketball Jobs, Who’s Better And Who’s Best?

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@warrenp @HoustonVol Martin got three years. He actually had a two year extension and pay raise on the table, however with a minimal buyout. Martin had marginal success in Knoxville in the weakest SEC in memory. With a rebuilding team next year, and tepid support from admin and fans, he chose to take another job instead of staying and possible being fired next year. It is easier to get a job when you have one than when you are unemployed.

3 months, 1 week ago on Report: Missouri’s Haith In Play For Tulsa Job

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I see this and the UT change that the fan bases, with the money involved, are expecting better results. With three years under their belts and next year being rebuilding they are jumping while they can before they are fired next year.

3 months, 1 week ago on Report: Missouri’s Haith In Play For Tulsa Job

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Most coaches and programs have a line drawn between violent and non-violent acts. The non-violent acts usually are given the chance to redeem themselves and it is easier to give them a second/third chance at another program. There is little downside, which I will express in a minute. However with a violent act, regardless if charges were filed, if you take that person into your program and school, you open yourself up to a whole new level of legal issues. Examples. Player A steals a person credit card and makes purchases and is booted from a program. Two years later another program takes that player on and he/she commits the same act, the likelihood of the program/school being sued for major amounts of money is low. However if Player B is booted from the program due to a violent crime/act and that player comes to the new school and commits another act of violence, it is not unrealistic for that new program to be sued for large amounts of money. With the money that these programs are generating, that increases the chances of a major lawsuit. Do you think LSU, UF, OSU or any other major program wants to risk bringing on DGB and having him physically assualt anyone and having that person bring a multi million dollar lawsuit? The larger the money pie grows in college sports, the less likely that the AD will sign off on bringing an athlete on board with a violent past.

3 months, 2 weeks ago on The SEC Needs A Rule Protecting Schools From Having To Face Players Booted For Disciplinary Reasons

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This Martin/TN mess is bad. I liked Martin and felt he was doing a great job rebuilding the program. To many Pearl fans refused to take off the blinders to realize that Pearl did not leave much behind. Plus the cloud of the NCAA hampered Martin's recruiting the first year+ because he did not know how many scholarships to offer. I have been a UT basketball fan my entire life. However we have always thought we were Kentucky in basketball, and accept nothing less. I could understand wanting to aspire to be as good as Kentucky in basketball, but to think the two programs were toe to toe on the national level is ridiculous. That is how many Vol fans think. We should be able to attract recruits and coaches like Kentucky. We are not Kentucky. It would take 50 years of winning to have UT viewed on a national level as Kentucky. The potential is there, more than at Florida, to have a national title winning program. However we have to support the program. In the end, it would not surprise me if Martin packs up and leaves. We will know tomorrow. Considering waiting a day will save Marquette 1.3 million dollars, there is no reason to rush the deal. As for all of the no public announcement by Hart regarding BB, Public press means nothing. What matters is what has been communicated directly between Martin and Hart. We have seen to many AD's make public statements, just to bury the coach a week or two later.

3 months, 4 weeks ago on Florida, Kentucky & Tennessee Hoops: The More Things Change, The More They Stay The Same

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I said during the season to vol fans calling for Martin's job that if they really want a new coach next year, they better hope that Martin makes the NCAA and makes a run and someone hires him away from us. A third 19/20 win season, under the issues that he has coached under, would not justify UT firing him. Now that the vocal section of the Vol fan base can no longer hook up with a certain ex-coach (whom I have never favored brining back), they are starting to appreciate the job that Martin is doing. I know that a lot of fans, including myself, were frustrated with this team February with the close loses to teams we had no business losing. We knew this team had the talent to challenge any team in the nation, something no one doubts now. I hope that Martin stays, and stays for a long time in Knoxville. However it would not surprise me if he exits stage right for a fan base that does not pine over an ex coach and can appreciate him.

4 months ago on Martin’s Last Stand At Tennessee? Vol Coach Has Plenty Of Reasons To Bolt

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I can see the connection that is trying to be made with the conspiracy theories, but cannot really swallow that pill on this one. Conflict of interest, maybe. Would Didion be so quick to support Bama hiring Pearl as Auburn? It is easier to forgive when you can reap the rewards of whom is being forgiven.

I don't think that Didion brought the hammer down on Pearl in hopes of being able to back track to Auburn and then support hiring him three years later. First, it would have been assuming that Barbee, who was hired at the same time when the hammer was being brought down on Pearl was going to be fired in three years. Two it would have assumed that a larger program with deeper BB pockets and better facilities would not be willing to hire Pearl. There are just to many ifs to justify a X file show dedicated to the topic. You have to keep in mind that until the Miami case was so famously screwed up, the NCAA was trying to hammer anything that stepped out of bounds. Since that moment, the NCAA has gone from the 300 warrior to an old man with no teeth unable to chew corn on the cob.

4 months, 1 week ago on If Pearl Lands At Auburn, Get Ready For “Conflict Of Interest” Questions For The NCAA

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Well I will be the first to say I did not believe that Pearl would jump at the first opprotunity that raised its head. I think this also shows that TN either told Pearl that there was not going to be a change this year in Knoxville and Martin will be back or that there was no way that TN would hire him again. It will be interesting to see how successful Pearl will be at Auburn. Fellow coaches will have a lot of bullets to fire against him regarding recruiting.

4 months, 1 week ago on Pearl To Auburn A Done Deal; Tigers Get A Winner

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I will be surprised it Pearl takes a position this year anywhere. The whole having to explain/justify the hire to the NCAA is a huge issue with AD's. Most AD's will not stick their necks out on a hire, sticking your neck out and having Pearl pull up and leave in two years or worse - issues with the NCAA and the AD would be out of a job. So an AD would only do that if it was a big enough position where Pearl is likely to stick around a couple of years. Auburn and Ole Miss are not that type of job. Plus - I doubt Pearl would want to risk starting either job with limitations like no recruiting until August or some other handcuff by the NCAA. Unless a situation comes up like Boston College or TN, I don't see Pearl getting back into coaching this off season.

4 months, 1 week ago on SEC Fans All Clamoring For Pearl (Which Is Why He Should Sit Tight)

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I have said all year that I doubt any major program takes a swing at Pearl this year. To hire him right now means going to the NCAA and justifying hiring him, or waiting until August for him to get started. Not a good way to launch a coaching change. BP has said that he will not take just any job to take a job. Plus, while I doubt that Martin would get fired for this year, next year is still a big question mark. If, big if, Stokes comes back, we could have a great team next year. Without Stokes, I wonder if the team could succeed enough to have Martin earn year 5+.. I feel for Martin. He is in a no win situation. A lot of fans want him gone for one reason - he is not Bruce Pearl. He has not done a bad job, though he has not done a great job either. He has not done a bad enough job to be canned after three years.

4 months, 2 weeks ago on Auburn The First Test Case For Ex-Tennessee Coach Pearl

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I would love to see TN cut down the nets, and they are good enough. However Martin's two NIT and SEC tourneys do not give me hope. I will be happy if this team breaks the UT/SEC tourney streak of just flopping. The last time I can remember us creating noise in the SEC Tourney was Wade Houston's squad that was dead last in the SEC that year and we reached the finals. Priving all blind squirrels can find nuts once and a while. I think Martin is a good coach, but it is time for him to show that he is a top 25 program coach.

4 months, 2 weeks ago on Can Anyone Upset Florida In The SEC Tourney? Sure… But Will They?

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While having divisions helped create more rivarlies, I know I am less interested in basketball since divisions were dumped. Not having Ky at home just felt wrong. I enjoyed having my Vols play in CS the past two years, but as my Aggies friends have pointed out many times - you care about basketball???? We (TAMU) don't. I supported the plan you put forward when they were discussing changing the format. In Basketball, Mizzou has no business playing in the East. The only western schools that have a commitment to basketball are LSU and Ark. In the East you have KY, FL, TN, Vandy that all make commitments to the hardcourts, and USC and UGA are trying also. All I know is this current format is not working at creating interest in the product. The needs to be more permanent rivals between the programs that show commitments and are closer regional/historical rivals.

4 months, 3 weeks ago on Remember When Dumping Divisional Play Was Supposed To Help SEC Basketball?

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@GatorGeek That is exactly the point. If they allowed the digital networks to directly sell to the consumer, the content provider (ESPN) is in direct competition with the Cable/sat company. I am sure that is part of these agreements. Pay us more for our networks, or we will start selling subscription service to our content.  Which the content providers can now say, do an end a round on us, and we will throttle your content to force people to by our video services (which was illegal before net nuetrality was struck down). Eventually the dam will break. The path is already set for the major cable/sat networks to eventually become just an internet service. They will still offer packages of TV channels, but a lot of items will be delivered on demand. It remains to be seen if that will save money for the consumer in the long run or not. I doubt it. As long as there are demand for the services, the companies will set the table to maximize their profits.  Regardless, the consumer (Us) will lose in the long term. We will find ourselves paying more for less services and less quality.

4 months, 3 weeks ago on Rumored Deal Between SEC Network/Dish Only One Piece Of A Major Agreement

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Well my contract is up in June with Direct TV. One of the factors in my decision to stay or go will be the SEC network and WatchESPN. My 'hood is wired for fiberoptic Uverse, and not cable. My only choices are Dish, Direct TV, or Uverse. I have been carefully keeping track of how and when we watch content. I know that I will be able to greatly improve how and when we watch sports by having access to WatchESPN ap, something that Direct TV is not providing.

4 months, 3 weeks ago on Rumored Deal Between SEC Network/Dish Only One Piece Of A Major Agreement

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@foxtrot1 @HoustonVol  I agree with you. I don't want Pearl back. I can look past the lying to the NCAA. Haith at Mizzou lied and got a three game suspension because it was associated with Miami and the NCAA needed to put that case to bed quietly and avoid lawsuits. It was the calling of the parents and recruits trying to get them to lie on his behalf that I cannot forgive. That is what keeps getting "forgotten" when discussing Pearl and why I think he was nailed so hard. He tried to do a cover up with kids and their parents.


Tennessee is 13-17 over the last two seasons in single digit games. That is a sign of the quality of coaching. When the game is on the line, the team/coach is not making the right call and plays down the stretch. This is happening in the weakest SEC that I can remember. Buzz, Green and Pearl were coaching during the time that the SEC was one of the top basketball leagues, so even comparing records is not fair. With the resources that TN has, there is no reason why we should not be the third best team in the conference this year, possible second. Instead we are stuck in a log jam in the middle of a bad conference.  That stat right there is why Martin will not be coming back if he does not make the NCAA. Our best hope is someone sees his third best SEC record and wants to hire him away from us. Unfortunately if he leaves/ is fired, I will be surprise if the school has the back bone to not hire Pearl. Anyone else will be dealing with the same issues that Martin dealt with - he is not Pearl.  

5 months ago on Pressure On Tennessee’s Martin More About Pearl Than Martin

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I am also rooting for Martin to succeed. However his track record does not give me hope. I think he is doing as good of a job as expected. To often over the last three years we have come up short in close games. A team this experienced with this much talent should be battling the Rupp kiddies for 2nd place in the SEC, not trying to fight above the scrum in a bad SEC for 3rd/4th place. Martin and TN are in a no win situation. Martin will never live up to the idea of what Pearl could do and did, and he will constantly have to look over his shoulder as long as Pearl is still in town. I am also on the no to Bring Back Bruce bandwagon. I could forgive the lying to the NCAA. Pearl was thrown under the bus by Hamilton and panicked. There are many coaches that have done worse. What I cannot forgive is calling up the recruits parents and asking them and the kid to lie on Pearl's behalf to save his job. When they declined, that was when Pearl came clean. That I cannot look past. If one of my kids' teachers did that, all heck would break loose. Why have lessor standards for your basketball coach? Plus Pearl would not be able to coach and recruit until August, which would really hamper him being successful out of the gate on trip two down the orange brick road. As for no win situation, I can see three/four outcomes. 1: This team wins out, does well in the SEC tourney (which would be a shock), and does well in the NCAA. Martin gets and extension and half of the Vol Nation sinks into depression, and we rinse and repeat for next season. Second, the team caves, crashes and burns again in the SEC and NIT, and Martin is handed a nice parting check. Then the question begs does the Administration have the back bone not to hire Pearl, whom would be the most popular choice. Third option - This team wins out, does well in the SEC tourney (which would be a shock), and does well in the NCAA and someone hires Martin away from TN. Then the question begs does the Administration have the back bone not to hire Pearl, whom would be the most popular choice. Option three is the best case for the administration - TN looks good in this case. Maybe Martin, knowing he is in a no-win situation like Tubbs at Kentucky exits stage right while the getting is good. In almost every case, Martin is not at TN after this season. I am hoping he finishes strong and exits on his terms and not ridden out of town by the dream of a second Pearl term on the sidelines. However as this season progresses, I see another messy coaching change on the hill. 

5 months ago on Pressure On Tennessee’s Martin More About Pearl Than Martin

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Don't forget when they renovated Thompson Bowling Arena, UT also took out a large chunk of seats (about 10%) to add a whole bank of suites to one side of the stadium. I do agree with you, how long until you see a school take a huge plunge. I  know GT reduced the size of their stadium, but that was 20 years ago. The first SEC school I see doing it would be Vandy. They have the money fans, and would be able to add suites and amenities without losing overall capacity. TN already has two huge bank of suites on both sides of the field. I don't see them making any major changes unless for some reason finances dictate more suites. Which I don't see anytime in the future. 

8 months, 1 week ago on The Future Of Football Stadiums Is Here; How Long Before An SEC School Follows Suit?

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@John at MrSEC John, I would have loved more news coverage of the event. After he collapsed on the field and NBC reported it I wanted more information, as I am sure most viewers did. However I would not want to sit and watch three reporters with no medical back ground sit around and speculate without facts. Even you have called out reporters and websites for jumping on rumors and reporting them as facts. For most of the third  and fourth quarters I was left wondering if the NFL and/or the Texans were putting up a smoke screen about the severity of the situation to prevent disruption on the field. It is clear, in hindsight, that NBC did not have any facts to report and was not obtaining any new information to report from the NFL and the Texans. So instead of speculating and reporting on rumors, they stuck to the facts and reported the event correctly. We might not have liked the flow of information, but I will take slow factual reporting over fast speculation any day - especially when it is a life and death situation. Thank you for providing a great website that tries to stay above speculation and rumor. 

8 months, 3 weeks ago on NBC’s Coverage Of Kubiak Collapse Should Cause SEC Broadcasters To Ask, “What If?”

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@John at MrSEC @HoustonVol I am a Texan fan. I will agree that I was frustrated with the lack of reporting that NBC devoted to the issue. I even questioned why they went to the New York studio. However as the event unfolded it was clear that the lack of coverage was due to the lack of information being provided by the Texans. There is only so many times you can report and replay a video. I don't know what else NBC could have done on this issue. Everyone in the organization was either devoting themselves to the game and halftime or Kubiak, either way they were not talking to the press. You are correct; Tafoya, Michaels and Costas are talented enough vamp on what is happening. However the last time I checked, they are not trained medical personnel. They would have only been able to speculate what they saw on the tape, which they did. Interview fans in the stadium?  Many of the fans at the game did not know what happened (that it was Kubiak) until well into the 3rd and 4th quarter as the news traveled around the stadium. One of my co-workers did not find out until she was on her way home after the game and heard it on the radio. What about heading to the hospital? Which hospital? The stadium is located in the Texas Medical Center, where there are more than 12 world class hospitals within two miles of the stadium. Because of the number of celebrities and world figures that utilize these facilities, you will not see a leak of information "off the record". That is the fastest way to get fired and black-balled in the TMC. In hindsight, I preferred hearing a scripted halftime show from New York instead of having to watch three talented reporters recycle the same information every minute. Or worse, interview fans that did not know what was going on. 

8 months, 3 weeks ago on NBC’s Coverage Of Kubiak Collapse Should Cause SEC Broadcasters To Ask, “What If?”

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John, I don't fully share your opinion on this matter. I watched the game last night. I felt NBC did all that they could on the matter. The team was not releasing any information, and still hasn't. How many times do you expect them to replay the same videos of him collapsing and being carted off the field and then saying "we will pass along information when we have it". Even this morning, the local TV stations with much more information had the same basic information. "He did not have a heart attack, and is still under evaluation. We will let you know when we have more information". I can promise you that the local channels have much better contacts inside the hospitals and Texans than NBC corp does. If they were not able to expand the story with hours to work on it, then the on air staff could not have done any better. The San Fran earthquake is totally different. It was an ongoing news story with constant updated information coming into the studio, fires, collapsed bridges, after shocks, lives being effected, etc. This was one man, a coach, collapsing and after he was taken to the hospital NBC received nothing in terms of information from the Texans other than he is ok and under evaluation. 

8 months, 3 weeks ago on NBC’s Coverage Of Kubiak Collapse Should Cause SEC Broadcasters To Ask, “What If?”

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The TAMU/Manziel issue will blow up right after Manziel signs his NFL contract this spring. At that point, JFF and his family will have no reason to remain silent. They have openly called out the school, Athletic Department and coaching staff. There is no love loss between the parties. I fully expect TAMU to be thrown under the bus and backed over a few times by the Manziel family by this time next year.

It would also not surprise me that part of this spin put out from the school is tied the OBannon case. If you are faced with losing a lawsuit that could cost you millions, would you not start spinning the story that you only made a few thousands of dollars vs. millions of dollars to decrease the expected payout? Especially against someone that has the millions of dollars to launch a large lawsuit against the school and conference.

8 months, 3 weeks ago on A&M Downplays The Value Of Manziel’s Heisman, But The School Sure Has A Lot Of Heisman Gear For Sale

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Those ranking pull in the end of Fulmer and Kiffin's two classes. Most of Kiffin's classes are not on campus so toss out those records. Dooley recruited well, but his stars have not panned out either. So the question is if TN can put together another great game like they did against UGA and USCe. Or will TN have a Bama hangover after feeling excited to play, just to have Bama remind them of how far they have to go. I think the offense will be more productive with Dobbs. As long as he does not panic like Peterson did at Florida, he should be fine. He did fine at Bama, and Mizzou is less intimating. So we will see. It would be great to catch a pair of Tigers over the coming two weeks.  

8 months, 4 weeks ago on SEC Game Previews – 11/1/13

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I have never fully understood the excuse yourself and leave the room rule. It is one item in basketball where the committee has about 2 dozen people on it and they are picking from the 50-60th team in the country. This is picking from the basically 4 teams from the top 4-8 teams in the country. Plus you have people like Willingham that has direct ties to 6-7 schools and several conferences. Rice grew up a major Alabama fan, and that is her first love football wise. Where do you draw the line? I say let them all in the room. If they do not have the integrity to openly and factually discuss all teams fairly, then they should not be on the panel. If you want to keep people calm, then record the sessions and make them available after the announcements.

9 months, 1 week ago on With The Playoff Selection Panel Set There’s Only 1 Question: How Do They View The SEC?

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Each coaching change has different expectation. TAMU did not surprise me. The reason why Sherman was fired was because he had the talent to contend for a national championship, and went 6-6. So it was not surprising to see a coach come in and have immediate success because there was and is excellent talent already in place. Tennessee does not have that option. We know the talent is not there. This season and next, I will enjoy every win and hope that there are some upsets. In season three, this big recruiting class will have one year under their belt, and Butch's first class will have had two. It is not unreasonable to see progress at that point, but I also don't expect miracles. 8-4 is a good expectation. Look at the progress Freeze has done in Ole Miss with just one class. It takes time and steps, but it does happen and will happen.  

9 months, 4 weeks ago on Ex-Vol Coach Fulmer Says New Vol Coach Jones Faces “Lots Of Challenges”

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Of course TN's numbers are shifted due to Oregon. It will be interesting what the numbers will look like by the end of the year. I expect TN's for 2013 to be better than 2012, but only because 2012's numbers were historically bad so anything will be an improvement.

9 months, 4 weeks ago on The Defense Rests: Has The SEC’s DNA Changed?

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Jones will get the same as any new coach. 3 years to show improvement. Now improvement will mean an 8-4 record and pushing the conference leaders for four quarters.  This season and next season are "hope we make a bowl" seasons. Year four and five should be pushing for a conference championship. However it is good to see Rocky Top becoming solid again. Fulmer was tight with a lot of high school coaches through out the south, which we lost that support with Kiffin and Dooley. One of the major reasons recruiting was flat for Dooley.

9 months, 4 weeks ago on Ex-Vol Coach Fulmer Says New Vol Coach Jones Faces “Lots Of Challenges”

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Chavis had his chances at TN to become a HC. He has commented on this many times. When he was interested in being a HC, the only opprotunities were hopeless cases that had a greater chance of failing than being successful. So he waited for the right place to come open. While he was waiting he saw all of the "poop" that HC had to deal with and decided he liked the view from where he was and that he was to old to deal with the poop of a head coach. Which is why he is not a head coach. Bud Foster is different. He has interviewed several times. Like Chavis, he does not want to step into a dire situation. Unlike Chavis, he will succeed Beamer at VT. Beamer probably has just a season or two left before he steps aside. When he does, Foster will be promoted to Head Coach.

10 months ago on SEC Game Previews – 9/27/20

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The second note is the time of the games. This is hurting a lot of schools that are not in/near major markets. Early and late games end up requiring an overnight stay for people that live more than a couple of hours away. This weeks game is at noon. If you live in Nashville or Atlanta, you would have to leave at 5am in order to drive, park, walk to make the game on time. If it is a night game, you would have to stay overnight and drive back the next day. I am sure other programs have this same issue. This adds $100's to the cost of attending the game when you factor in hotel and meals. This cost is on top of the actual cost of attending the game. Wonder why people are not driving in to watch USA/UT? Thankfully CBS gave up their lock on the mid-afternoon games with the new TV contracts, and hopefully this will help with some fans.

10 months ago on Schools’ Greed Damaging The Future Of College Football

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I know that there are many issues with TN filling Neyland. First - they started charging students for tickets. When I attended, we got sports tickets for free (well included as part of the student activity fee). Football and Men's basketball you had to get tickets in advance, Woman's BB we just had to show up. I loved the student section, and did not miss a game my four years in school. Now they charge $10 a student. $70 most seasons. Which is more than season tickets to Houston or Rice, just FYI. The renovation of TBA, where they removed 4k seats has been a huge success. It is now one of the best BB arenas in the nation. Plus the last renovation of Neyland actually removed a couple of thousands of seats. A good team that you want to root for helps, but even Bama, UF, OSU, Texas, etc. are having issues filling the stadium for every game. If I was a coach, AD, etc. I would rather have 20k students getting rowdy in the endzone making the stadium active instead of a bunch of wine and cheese boosters. It looks better on TV, and for recruits. When you have 100k seats, you can appeal to both.

10 months ago on Schools’ Greed Damaging The Future Of College Football

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I am in favor of the sponsorship route run through the Athletic Department. Not a flat pay for play because it does not solve the imbalance of media worth to scholarship ratio that is being called into question. Just the past week TAMU announced that the University's donations last year was over $700 million dollars, $300 million larger than Texas. You think the TV deals are huge, check out donations and academic funding. They credit the huge jump due to the move to the SEC and JM and his heisman win. Oh Oh - TAMU just put a value on Manziel of 100's of millions of dollars, and he is getting an instate scholarship and no money from endorsements, sponsorships, jersey sales, etc. His he worth more than the back up QB? Yep, and if they are all paid the same cost of scholarship stipend, the issue would not change. So set up a system where the athletes (regardless of sport/gender) can sign sponsorship deals through the ADept. If you are caught violating your sponsorship/likeness contract with the school, you are now responsible and can be sued in court.

10 months, 1 week ago on MrSEC.com Says Go Ahead And Give College Players Cash (And All That Goes With It)

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