Saturday, January 24, 2015

"I was like, 'I'm playing in an SEC game, yeah!'"

via UGASports

We hear so much (especially this time of year) about young men coming into the program to start their collegiate career. Personally, I find it more relevant,  refreshing to look at the grown men going out after their collegiate career is done. That's why I thoroughly enjoyed the start to Dash's new series of exit interviews. He starts with someone that didn't play much, Zach DeBell, who provides a unique perspective of what it's like to maybe fall short of your dreams, but enjoy the hell out of the ride.
UGASports: What was your most disappointing moment?
DeBell: "Tech. (After the game) Coach (Joe) Tereshinski gave us, it wasn't an earful but he gave us a speech and that was the first time I was like - whoa. When it comes to coaching, that's the most heart I've seen in long time. He lives, breathes and dies Georgia football. I'm not going to go into details because it was a lot of team stuff, but he's got a lot of heart." 

Friday, January 23, 2015

Thursday, January 22, 2015

About that Belk bump

It is an issue of confidence now...
“We are very pleased with the direction of our program under Mark’s leadership,” McGarity said in a statement. “Mark and his staff are making significant strides in all areas our program and we look forward to great things in the years to come.”
...and patience moving forward...
Richt, who turns 55 next month, is 136-48 at Georgia. He guided the Bulldogs to the SEC title game in 2011 and 2012, but hasn’t won an SEC title since 2005 and is still seeking the school’s first national title since 1980. 
I'm not necessarily sensing urgency, but recent events (namely the money being spent invested in the football program in terms of salaries for coaches, support staff being added to the program, and an indoor practice facility in the works) lead me to believe that there is an extra layer of accountability being added across the board.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Indoor swamp coming - Fall 2015

Just in time to close this recruiting season...

It's official! UAA announces plans to build an indoor practice facility, to open Fall 2015.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Jury selection continues in the State vs. Urban Meyer's heart condition

aka, Aaron Hernandez
Numerous witnesses will provide testimony that portrays Hernandez in a very suspicious light. None of these witnesses will explicitly say, I know that Aaron Hernandez murdered Odin Lloyd, but plenty of them will point jurors in that direction. As many as 305 people, in fact, are listed as potential witnesses for the prosecution. Most of them won’t be called, but prosecutors believe each has information or insight that could help prove the case. The list includes names familiar to sports fans, most notably Patriots coach Bill Belichick and team owner Robert Kraft, but other witnesses are more likely to play significant roles.
There's been some debate as to whether Belichick and Kraft would be called before the Super Bowl, which isn't until Feb 1st. But Urban Meyer is available. At least he is available in between recruiting visits (which may or may not involve penitentiary visits).

In all seriousness, this is going to be an interesting case to follow. Hernandez's attorneys have already succeeded in having the victim's cell phone records ruled inadmissible. The fiancée has thus far "stood by her man" and refuses to take an immunity deal. And the effort to seat a fair and impartial jury is quite the burden.
“People who tell you they don’t know anything about this are lying,” he said, referring to the high-profile trial.
He said he wasn’t intimidated standing mere feet from Hernandez.
“He’s just another person,” he said.
A different young man with a black ponytail was released after questioning. He answered questions loudly and could be heard mentioning the Patriots — over the din of white noise being pumped into the courtroom to muffle the sidebars.
If Hernandez beats the rap in Odin Lloyd's murder, there's a few more legal battles waiting in the wind. If he's found innocent of all three murders, the weapons charges, the assault and battery charges (stemming from prison altercations), the wrongful death civil suits, and the allegedly shooting his friend in the face suit, perhaps then the University of Florida will lay his All-American brick back down.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Season recap video - "GEORGIA"

What a season.

Baddest girl on campus

If you haven't already, meet Shelby Saponari

She’s a really good player, a good skater,” said Gus Saponari, who also coached her on girls select teams. “She’s a head’s-up player. If you keep your head up, you can avoid some big hits.”
And deliver them. In her Ice Dogs debut, Shelby gave a hip check to a Gator that announced her arrival.
“He went flying,” she recalled. “I didn’t see how big of a hit it was. I heard how big it was. The whole crowd went crazy.”
Hockey wasn't available for me as a sport back in my formative years. But if it were, and it offered a chance to play with badass girls AND a chance to hip check gators, well, I would've given it a shot.

Friday, January 16, 2015

If you "take" one thing away from recruiting coverage...

...let it be this:

Have seen that tweet from Maryland Compliance making the rounds. It's funny and to the point. Most importantly, there's a lot of fans nationwide that could take a moment to let that sink in. Or, if you just can't respect the Terrapins' compliance office, try the immortal words of Roger Waters:

"Hey! Tweeter! Leave them kids alone!"

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Recruiting trails are alive for #Fam15!

So begins the mad dash towards the February 4th faxing tournament!!

Gurley stands alone

Of course, he was long considered to be just a three year player at Georgia. But he's the only draft eligible underclassman Richt has that is leaving early. As Weiszer reports, that's just one more from last season when no Bulldogs entered the NFL Draft pool, but it's still a stark contrast to recent years that saw many key players leave campus.
From 2009-12, the Bulldogs had 11 underclassmen enter the draft.
That included tight end Orson Charles (fourth round, 2012), safety Reshad Jones (fifth round, 2010) and nose guard Kwame Geathers (undrafted, 2013).
Thinking back, I always felt Leonard Floyd would leave after this past season. But shoulder surgery may have helped him decide to stay. Others that were possibilities - Malcolm Mitchell, John Theus, Jordan Jenkins, Justin Scott-Wesley, and Kolton Houston. Mitchell and JSW dealt with injuries and lots of games missed. And Houston is still progressing as an offensive lineman after emerging from Mark Emmert's purgatory before the 2013 season. So really, Theus and Jenkins were the only other possibilities to leave early who had played a lot this past season.

In Weiszer's piece, Richt argues that the importance of a college degree is often lost in the headlines this time of year. I wouldn't bet against that either, especially with someone like Jenkins who made a big deal out of applying to (and getting accepted into) the Terry College of Business back in August. Still, the lure of the NFL's early rounds and all that cash has to be tempting. Last May, 98 underclassmen threw their name in and 14 of them were selected in the first round. In fact, the first four picks were players who left eligibility on the table. From there it dropped off steadily until 45 of those underclassmen were left undrafted.

So to a player like Jenkins and Theus, that dropoff puts a lot of stock into their draft analysis they get back from the NFL. If they even requested it. Nationwide, the number of underclassmen requesting a draft grade went down dramatically.
The number of college underclassmen that have requested an evaluation from the NFL Draft Advisory Board is down a staggering 42 percent from last year, NFL Executive Vice President of Football Operations Troy Vincent revealed in a tweet Thursday. The precipitous drop likely stems from a change to NFL policy regarding the feedback system for underclassmen. NFL Media's Albert Breer noted the changes to the system in July, reporting that college football programs would be limited to requesting feedback on behalf of five underclassmen. Previously, there had been no limit to the number of underclassmen that could request a grade.Another potential reason for the big drop could be the cautionary tale from this year's draft. Of the record-setting 98 underclassmen that were granted eligibility for the 2014 NFL Draft, a whopping 45 went undrafted. That number prompted further calls from coaches and others for players to think long and hard before making the jump from college to the pro ranks as underclassmen.
Some fans get angry at players who leave early. I'll admit to being disappointed a time or two about a player's decision. But in the end it's not my place. This is often the moment they've worked very hard towards, and the decision to stay and study or leave and play full time is a personal one. So it's good to see these players are getting better feedback to make the best decision for themselves and their family. And not just blindly jumping at a possible cash grab.

Best of luck to Todd Gurley. Looking forward to seeing him continue his career for many years. And best of luck to those that are staying. Looking forward to seeing them continue at least another season 'tween the hedges.