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No Vote Of Confidence From Florida AD For Muschamp Yet… But The Coach Deserves Another Year

will-muschamp-tight-faceApparently there will be no vote of confidence for Will Muschamp at Florida.  There will be no puff of “we’re going to keep him” white smoke from the chimney above Jeremy Foley’s office.  At least it doesn’t appear that one’s on the way.

According to The Miami Herald (with a hat tip to our friends at CollegeFootballTalk.com):

 

“Although Florida athletic director Jeremy Foley has reportedly voiced his support for Muschamp privately, he has yet to do so publicly, and a humiliating loss to Vanderbilt has only further swelled speculation about the entire coaching staff’s job security.”

 

Plenty of Gator fans are angry enough to boot the third-year coach right now.  As in today.  Forget all the injuries (Florida lost another starter for the year on Saturday).  Muschamp could lose a full 85 men to the infirmary and fans would still be angry after losses.  Especially losses like the one to Vanderbilt.

But Muschamp won 11 games last season and was one close loss to Georgia away from playing for the SEC crown and possibly the BCS title.  Stop.  Re-read that sentence.  Now consider that Florida fans want the man canned and their program thrown asunder — again — after only three years.

We at MrSEC.com know all about Muschamp’s overall record and its similarity to Ron Zook’s.  But Zook never posted more than eight wins in a season during his three-year cup of coffee in Gainesville.  Muschamp has.

A look at the schedule (Georgia Southern, South Carolina, Florida State) suggests that Muschamp will probably finish the season with a three-year mark of 23-15.  Aside from the 11-win season that no one in the Sunshine State seemed to care about, the best thing going for Coach Boom is the fact that Foley hasn’t fared to well in his hires.

Zook: Gone in three years.

Urban Meyer: Two BCS titles but embarrassing off-field issues and a program in total disarray by the end of his six-year run.  Oh, and he also ditched Florida for health reas… sorry, he also ditched Florida for Ohio State.

Now Muschamp.  If Foley blows him up the next hire he makes — if it backfires — could be his last.  He’s viewed as a great AD, yes, but if money declines thanks to lackluster football, a drop in booster checks, and a decline in attendance, someone will be held responsible.  And Foley can only keep hiring short-timers for so long.

The temperature of Muschamp’s seat only emphasizes how much the game has changed.  Coaches do not get time to build anymore.  Just forget it.  It doesn’t happen.

If the Gators’ current coach does finish the year at 23-15, he’ll have a winning mark of 60% in his first three years.

Bear Bryant wasn’t much of a fast starter, either.  From 1946 through ’48 he won 64.5% of his games at Kentucky (20-9-2).  From ’54 through ’56 he won 56.6% of his games at Texas A&M (17-11-2).  At Alabama, he started 20-7-5 from ’58 through ’60 (62.5%).  He also wound up coaching in Tuscaloosa for 25 seasons in and won six consensus national titles.

There are other coaches from past eras who started slowly only to build big winners.  Tom Osborne, John McKay, Vince Dooley.  Dooley had a winning percentage of just 64% after his first seven seasons in Athens.  He’s third all-time in SEC victories in case you didn’t know.

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Al.com Opens Bear Bryant Photo Vaults

bear-bryant-goalpostWednesday will mark the 100th anniversary of Paul “Bear” Bryant’s birth.  Which means it’ll be pretty much a state holiday in the state of Alabama.

To get an early start on the celebrations/memorials, the folks at Al.com have posted online 20 rarely seen photos of The Bear.  It’s fantastic for Tide fans and Tide haters alike.  Anyone with a memory of the legendary coach leaning under the goalposts before a game will enjoy taking the trip into the past.

An A+ to The Birmingham News, The Mobile Press-Register, and The Huntsville Times for giving us a new glimpse at one of college football’s greatest all-time figures.  And when we say “new glimpse,” we mean it.  Ever seen Bear Bryant in a beret?  Heck, it’s not even houndstooth.

 

paul-bear-bryant-100-years---forgotten-moments-3e45e09fd382adfe

 

 

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SEC Headlines 6/6/2013

headlines-thuSEC Football

1. Five players reportedly leaving Kentucky. Down to four scholarship receivers until incoming freshmen arrive. ”When you have a new coach taking over a 2-10 team, some bags are going to be packed.”

2. Tennessee running back Marlin Lane reinstated?

3.South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier 38 wins away from breaking Bear Bryant’s record for most conference victories by an SEC coach and drawing inspiration from the pope.

4. Recalling Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin’s first SEC Media Days appearance and his assessment of the SEC West:  ”What’s my assessment? It’s a pretty damn hard league.”

5. Alabama an early six point favorite over Texas A&M, first time less than touchdown favorite since 2012 BCS championship game. Crimson Tide 11.5 favorite over LSU.

6. Is Mississippi State a trap game for LSU?

7. Nick Saban is not opposed to a duel-threat quarterback at Alabama: “You would like to always be able to recruit players that fit your system. But sometimes that’s not always possible.”

8. Alabama makes the honor roll for academic success.  Saban:  ”I think that speaks volumes for the commitment that we have to academics…”

9. Saban wants 10 BCS games: “So if everybody played 10 BCS games, we’d certainly play nine in the conference.”  What about a national rival game for every SEC team?

10. A vision of an SEC regular-season kickoff game in Birmingham?

11. A chance to revive the Missouri-Illinois series in St. Louis?

12. Auburn coach Gus Malzahn on Jay Prosch:  ”He has a chance to be one of the better H-backs we’ve ever had.”

13. Former Arkansas quarterback Mitch Mustain on his relationship with Malzahn: “My and Gus’s relationship is generally that of any former athlete and coach, especially ones who have shared times like we have.”

14. Dukes assistant coach Leon Wright joining Les Miles’ staff at LSU as a graduate assistant.

SEC Basketball

15. Former Missouri guard Michael Dixon is officially a Tiger, a Memphis Tiger.

16. Dixon on Missouri coach Frank Haith and assistant Tim Fuller: “They have been tremendously supportive of me. I love them for that and always have and always will.”

17. Florida will play Dixon’s new team in the Jimmie V classic in New York in December.

18. Frank Martin adding Perry Clark as an assistant coach at South Carolina.

Extras

19. Florida State looking for an athletic director.  Randy Spetman has left the position.

20. Oklahoma State Mike Gundy facing a lawsuit that involves an Oklahoma t-shirt.

21. Outgoing North Carolina chancellor says it’s time for A.D.s to handle athletics.

D-Day Anniversary

22. 69 years ago today, Operation Overlord started.  D-Day invasion led to Allies victory in Europe less than a year later. Ceremonies in France today.

23. President Reagan’s speech at the 40th anniversary: “These are the boys of Pointe du Hoc. These are the men who took the cliffs.”

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Wow Headlines 4/26/2013

Twelve ex-SEC players selected in first round of NFL draft Thursday night
Minnesota Vikings sent four picks to the New England Patriots to select former Tennessee wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson
NFL draft continues Friday night and Saturday
Former LSU cornerback Tharold Simon reportedly arrested Thursday night…projected as mid-round pick
In six years at Alabama, coach Nick Saban already has more first-round NFL selections than Bear Bryant did in 25 years at Bama
Mike Vollmar hired as Tennessee’s new associate AD in charge of football
Follow SEC sports year-round at MrSEC.com and on Twitter at Twitter.com/mrsec

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Bryant Museum Boasts “So Many Trophies, So Little Space”

Allow us to state the obvious: The Paul W. Bryant Museum is a designed to draw in Alabama fans.  Fans of other schools might tour the place when in town for a weekend, but a Bear Bryant museum is going to first try and target Bama fans first and foremost.  Obviously.

For that reason, no one should take too much offense to the boastful new advertisement that the museum posted online yesterday:

 

So Many Trophies, So Little Space

 

“So many trophies, so little space,” instantly gets the message across that Bama’s football history is, well, pretty darned good.  (Though it also makes the museum sound kinda small, if you think about it.)  More interesting to us is the guy who makes a cameo at the end of the spot.  Any SEC basketball fan will immediately recognize the bug-eyed face of UA student Jack Blankenship who became a bit of a sensation by holding up a large cut-out of his own face while opponents attempted free throws during last hoops season.

 

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SEC Headlines – 11/16/11 Part One

1.  Georgia Southern’s flexbone offense has ties to Bear Bryant’s wishbone offense.  (We pause so that Alabama fans may genuflect.)

2.  The Crimson Tide’s passing game is “good enough” but something is different this year.

3.  Spreading the ball around is important in Gus Malzahn’s offense.

4.  The $64,000 Question: Which season best defines Gene Chizik — 2010 or 2011?

5.  Arkansas tailback Knile Davis is practicing, back from what was believed to be a season-ending preseason ankle injury…

6.  But Bobby Petrino says “he’s not in a situation he can play.”

7.  LSU’s defensive players want their unit to be considered an all-time great.

8.  Hoops coach Trent Johnson was already into his postgame handshake while the finals seconds ticked away from LSU’s loss to Coastal Carolina last night.

9.  Mississippi State is still trying to fix kicking game woes.

10.  Dan Mullen says he’s still comfortable with his quarterback rotation despite his team’s offensive struggles. 

11.  Receivers coach Gunter Brewer — son of former Rebel coach Billy Brewer — will handle recruiting and player relations for Ole Miss until a new coach can be found.

12.  Baton Rouge native Brandon Bolden is looking forward to one last game with LSU.

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UK Replaces Ring Of Honor, Bruises Some Egos

This year, Commonwealth Stadium in Lexington has a new look.  A video ribbon board wraps around the upper deck of the stadium… just as others do at most large stadiums in the country.  The video boards run some “fire ‘em up” messages during games, but their prime mission is to deliver advertisements.

Well, the new ribbon at Kentucky replaced a Ring of Honor that once listed the names of 45 ex-UK greats from Bear Bryant to Tim Couch.  And that’s not sitting well with some of the guys whose names were on that wall.

A sampling…


Sam Ball:  “I feel like me and the other 40-plus football players that paid the price to build Kentucky’s football program and paid the price to be Wildcats are now just about forgotten.  It’s almost disrespectful.”

Mark Higgs:  “(It) was like a slap in the face.  Now, they’re advertising Coke and putting on a laser show.  It’s terrible, just terrible.”

Joe Federspiel:  “You see your name, see all the good players who have played at the University of Kentucky, it’s a real honor.  What they’ve done now is sort of a slap in the face to former players.”


Wow.  Now maybe UK did step out of line by taking down the Ring of Honor.  If nothing else, the school dropped the ball by not alerting the ex-Cats honored on the wall that their names were coming down.  But shouldn’t these players let someone else do the complaining for them?

Not all schools have a Ring of Honor.  So from the get-go it was a nice gesture on the part of UK.  Nowhere is it written that a few ex-Cats must have their names on the wall at Commonwealth Stadium.

A slap in the face?  Really?

This is just my take, but even if I felt that way, I’d leave it to someone else to say it.  It strikes me as being a bit arrogant for anyone to say, “Hey, I want my name on the stadium!”

Kentucky officials point out that they have posted the names on flags around the stadium and twice per game they show the names on the video ribbon board.

Apparently that’s just not good enough.  We expect to see a new Ring of Honor created somewhere else inside the stadium by next fall.  The only way to quiet bad press like this is to yield to the complaints.

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Broadcaster Davis Flattered By UT A.D. Talk

Fox and NFL Network analyst Charles Davis said today on WNML-AM/FM in Knoxville that he is flattered that his name has been mentioned in connection with the soon-to-be-opened athletic director position at Tennessee.  Davis was a defensive back at UT in the mid-1980s.


“I’m extremely flattered and humbled.  I have a terrific job that I love.  I don’t want to sound like I’m at a press conference making one of those great statements where I say something without saying anything.  Bottom line, let’s just put it on the table.  If mama calls, you listen to mama.  Just like Bear Bryant said.  For him he was a coach and mama called him to go coach.  I’m not an athletic director.  But if mama called and wanted to talk to me, how could I not talk to mama? 

I’m not saying I’m interested in the job.  I’m not campaigning for the job.  I’m not asking for the job.  In fact, I firmly believe that it’ll never get to that anyway, because what I think Tennessee is looking for is someone who’s already doing this.” 


Davis did serve as an assistant athletic director at Stanford from 1994 through 1996.

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