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SEC Headlines 1/26/2013

headlines-satSEC Football

1. Nebraska coach Bo Pelini to high school player Dominic Walker – who flipped his commitment from Nebraska to Auburn: “‘Best of luck, you’re going to need it.”

2. Most loyal fanbase in the country?  Survey says…Auburn.

3. Tennessee has to clamp down on over-exuberant students – eager to greet recruits with a welcome message.

4. Former Florida defensive back De’Ante “Pop” Sanders has enrolled at Tennessee State.

5. Alabama has four players in today’s Senior Bowl game.  All have something to prove.

6. LSU has two players in the game. Defensive end Lavar Edwards projected as a fourth-round pick. Wide receiver Russell Shepard expected to be a seventh-round pick or free agent.

7. Former LSU cornerback Tyrann Mathieu says he’ll attend the NFL draft combine in February.

8. Vanderbilt wants a Thanksgiving weekend series with Middle Tennessee State.  MTSU wants the series, which starts in 2015, to be the season opener.

9. A facelift of Missouri’s Memorial Stadium is underway. The addition will add more than 5,000 general admission seats and about 1,200 premium seats.

10. AJ McCarron and the responsibilities of being a quarterback at Alabama: ”I don’t think any of us can comprehend the pressure he has to win.”

11. Bear Bryant died 30 years ago today. Former players and coaches remember the private Bryant.

College News 

12. Former Miami assistant coach basketball coach Michael Schwartz will not receive a notice of allegations from the NCAA. Schwartz was an assistant to former Hurricanes coach and current Missouri coach Frank Haith.

13. University of Central Florida coach George O’Leary on the Miami investigation and NCAA president Mark Emmert:  ”I’m sure Mark (Emmert) didn’t know what was going on, but there are times when coaches don’t know what’s going on either and yet we’re getting punished.”

14. The president of the National College Players Association says a news conference on head injuries was cancelled because of pressure from the BCS.  ”The BCS has tried to actively silence us on this. That was pretty disturbing.”

SEC Basketball

15. With Craig Sword and Fred Thomas, Mississippi State has the No. 1 and No. 3 freshmen scorers in the SEC.

16. Florida has held opponents to 52 points or less 11 times this season.

17. How has Kentucky’s Kyle Wiltjer been in practice lately?  ”An animal.”

18. Georgia’s Kentavious Caldwell-Pope leads the team in scoring, rebounding and steals.

19. In conference play, Ole Miss guard Marshall Henderson leads in scoring.  Tennessee’s Jordan McRae is second.

20. Status of Auburn’s Chris Denson and Jordan Price murky heading into the weekend.

21. Both Keion Bell and Laurence Bowers missed the last Missouri game. Bell has a better chance to play today against Vanderbilt.

22. When Mike Anderson left Missouri for Arkansas, Rotnei Clarke “didn’t feel comfortable” with the new coach and left for Butler.

Extra

23. Is a made-for-TV movie next? Katie Couric got Manti, Dr. Phil gets the alleged hoaxer.

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SEC Headlines – Football/Basketball News 12/5/2012

SEC/College News

1. Two  million viewers tuned in to the SEC Championship game - most-watched college football game this year

2. One year ago today, Hugh Freeze was hired at Ole Miss.

3.  Archie Manning on Freeze: ”I had met Hugh, but in the interview process I got to know him better and what was going on in my head is that this guy is a coach. I just say that with the utmost respect.”

4. Florida true freshman running back Matt Jones has a bright future.

5. South Carolina’s defense will have a challenge in Michigan quarterback Denard Robinson.

6. New study refutes NCAA claim that African-American male student-athletes are 10% more likely to graduate than peers not on sports teams.

7.  NCAA allows bowls to distribute up to $550 in gifts to 125 participants per school. Florida players will get watches, caps and hoodies.

8.  The costs per wins at each FBS school based on head-coaches salaries.  From $2.5 million at Kansas to just over $27,000 at Kent State. Gene Chizik second at more than $1.1 million.

Honors/Awards

9.  Coaches make their selection for All-SEC teams.

10. Alabama center Barret Jones wins the Campbell Trophy and has some fun in the process.  ”There’s been this linebacker from Notre Dame who’s been giving me weird looks the whole time.”

11. South Carolina’s Jadeveon Clowney named  the nation’s best defensive end.

12. Heisman past and Heisman future?  John David Crow and Johnny Manziel. Manziel just the latest iteration of the “Super Quarterback.”

13.  Former Tennessee coach Phillip Fulmer inducted into College Football Hall of Fame Tuesday night. Tennessee went 45-4 from 1995 to 1998.

14. Former LSU running Charles Alexander also inducted - two-time All-American in the late 1970′s.

SEC Basketball

15. Missouri 81 – Southeast Missouri State 65.  Down 10 points at half, Tigers rally behind career-high 26 points from Laurence Bowers.

16. Mississippi State 53 – UT San Antonio 42. Career-high 20 points for Wendell Lewis.

17. Arkansas 81 – Oklahoma 78.  33 points for Marshawn Powell leads the Razorbacks.

18. Georgia Tech 62 – Georgia 54. Scoring again an issue for the Bulldogs – drop to to 2-6.

19. Kentucky 88 – Samford 56. John Calipari declares “Camp Cal”  - three weeks of running at 7:00 a.m. ”Heart rates will be high.”

20. Alabama hosts Dayton tonight.  Crimson Tide coach Anthony Grant gets another shot at his alma mater.

21. Florida vs. Florida State tonight as Gators and Seminoles renew rivalry on the basketball court.

22. Tennessee travels to Virginia.  Loss to Georgetown makes this one even more important for the Vols.

23. Johnny Jones has LSU off to its best start in four years.

Extra

24. Born Robert John Ludwig, 50-year old Gabrielle Ludwig is back on a college basketball court for the first time since 1980.

25. Pro athletes now hiring beat writers to cover themselves.

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VSL Gets You Ready: Previewing Vanderbilt vs. Missouri

Vanderbilt
Content provided by Vanderbilt Sports Line.

The Commodores face their toughest match-up of the year tonight when they take on the Missouri Tigers at the Zou (which is an awesome nickname for their arena, by the way). The game is at 9/8 CST and will be shown on ESPNU.

Vanderbilt has a chance to really make a statement if they can pull out a win in a difficult road match-up. However, that will be easier said than done, as Mizzou is capable of exploiting Vanderbilt’s greatest weakness. Mizzou loves to run a fast-paced, full court press and force teams into mistakes with a lot of pressure. From the traditional statistical point of view, Vanderbilt is averaging 16 turnovers per game, good for 252nd in the nation. This does not bode well against a Missouri team that averages 10.7 steals a game and wins the turnover margin by an average of 6 a game.
That being said, the same was true of last year’s match-up, and Vandy came away with a 6 point win at home. Vandy committed 24 turnovers in that game, but overcame that deficit with a solid performance from the free throw line and solid defense that kept Mizzou’s field goal percentage down. They also significantly won the rebounding battle 45-24, including 14 rebounds in that game. It’s worthy of note that Festus did not play in that game last year. Andre Walker and Jeffery Taylor were huge, however, as Jeff had a double-double and Walker had 12 rebounds.
The real linchpin in this game is how Festus will handle the post duties and fill in for A.J Ogilvy. To this point in the year, looking at the numbers, it isn’t difficult to argue that the team is operating better with Fez in the post than Ogilvy. According to Kenpom.com, our offensive rebounding percentage is vastly improved (basically a calculation of the number of second chances we get), and perhaps MORE importantly our offensive rebounding percentage allowed (the number of second chances we give our opponents), is ALSO vastly improved. When I say vastly, I mean that we are well over the D-I average in both categories, and more than 5 percentage points per game higher than last year’s squad. The basic point? This team controls the boards better than last year’s squad, and it’s because of Festus who ranks SECOND IN THE NATION in Offensive Rebounding % as a player.
In order to win this game, Vandy has to try to limit turnovers, but more importantly, Vandy has to control the glass, get second chance looks, shoot well from the perimeter and the inside, and get to the line. More especially, Vandy has to do their best to slow down Mizzou’s pace offensively. The more this is a half-court game, the better the result will be for the ‘Dores.
Missouri is not a large team, and they are not great defensively except for their Turnover %. They do a good job of forcing turnovers and blocking shots, but they will allow points from the perimeter in a half-court offense. That being said, they are a solid offensive squad, and they have a great deal of balance. Players to hate immediately are Ricardo Ratliffe, Marcus Denmon, Laurence Bowers, Michael Dixon, and Kim English. All five are averaging double figures in points, with Denmon leading the way with 16.4 ppg. He’s a junior guard who is deadly from three point range and from the free throw line. Dixon is the facilitator and averages almost three steals a game. English, who scored 24 against Vandy last year, has not had as much success shooting the three this year, but he is still a player to be aware of.
VSL will be live-blogging the game, and yours truly, as well as Bobby O’Shea will be in attendance. Get ready Vandy fans, because this should be a real good one.
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