Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Merry Christmas, Happy Hannukah and have a delightful Kwanzaa

I'm traveling, so it's a light day on the blog today. I'm going to take the next two days off unless something really crazy happens, so the next post should come Friday. I'll be in Tampa most of the next week and a half for Outback Bowl coverage before heading to south Florida January 2nd to begin dealing with UF/Oklahoma.

Dan Mullen continues to put together his staff at Mississippi State, and so far he seems nostalgic for Coach Fran's two years in Tuscaloosa. His latest hire is Les Koenning, who says...

“I’ve known Coach Mullen for a long time and our offensive philosophies are very similar”

Koenning spent last year helping South Alabama get their startup football program going, but before that he was Dennis Franchione's offensive coordinator at Alabama and Texas A&M. Those offenses and Mullen's share a similar philosophy how exactly? Supposedly ex-UNC head coach Carl Torbush, Franchione's DC at Alabama and then at Texas A&M until he was made into a scapegoat, is Mullen's choice for defensive coordinator. I don't think this staff has people quaking in their cleats.

Some injuries are simply too horrible to put into words. There was a brutal injury in the New Orleans Bowl Sunday night, for example, that will induce cringes in anyone who saw it anytime it's brought up. I'm not linking to the video, because if you missed it you're lucky. I can put another horrible injury into two words, though: torn scrotum. Once you're done recoiling, read the story - the high school kid it happened to played half the game that way. He was either in shock or he's tougher than a Waffle House steak.

The Cleveland Browns have officially reached trainwreck status, and it's not just because they've gone five games without scoring an offensive touchdown. Defensive tackle Shaun Smith apparently punched supposed eventual star QB Brady Quinn in the face this past week. Between Romeo Crennel in Cleveland, Charlie Weis at Notre Dame and Eric Mangini with the New York Jets (maybe not much longer), it seems like Bill Belichick's genius status doesn't get passed on to proteges.

My favorite contemporary Christmas song is U2's version of "Baby Please Come Home", followed closely by Bruce Springsteen's "Merry Christmas Baby" and Mariah Carey's "All I Want for Christmas Is You". If I never hear "Feliz Navidad" or Wham's "Last Christmas" (it's not a Christmas song just because the word's in the title) again, it'll be too soon. What's your favorite? Have a great holiday!

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