The NFL playoffs are set, and of Florida's three NFL teams only the Dolphins made it in. Naturally with Bill Parcells market value at a high point again, word just happened to get out yesterday about his availability to bail on his deal with Dolphins and get nine million bucks more while doing so. What a remarkable coincidence, much like when the word leaked the day before a first round Bucs Eagles playoff game that Tony Dungy was being fired and replaced by Parcells. As came to light a year later when Parcells decided to come back with the Cowboys, he had secretly signed a contract with the Bucs and then refused to show up after all. Parcells leaking that story when he did screwed over Dungy and the Bucs fans, and him not actually coming to Tampa compounded the damage even more. But hey, Bill was happy! As Fins fans are finding out with this needless distraction, that's the only thing that ever matters.
As a consequence of the Parcells fiasco, the Bucs gave away two firsts, two seconds and eight million dollars to Oakland for Jon Gruden. Tampa Bay would have gotten to postseason had they been able to handle the mighty Raiders at home, but that was too much to ask. A month after Monte Kiffin apparently left as defensive coordinator, he's now officially gone. Some Tampa area columnists are now suggesting perhaps Gruden should be bounced as well. I have wanted Gruden fired for three years, and this fiasco certainly didn't change my mind. Before last week, only one team in the NFL had been able to come to the eastern time zone from the west and win all season. Gruden's team just allowed it to happen on back to back Sundays - pathetic.
FSU won their bowl game over the weekend, but were a little too proud of a Champs Sports Bowl trophy for their own good. When your bowl MVP is the punter, that's just bizarre. Still, compared to Miami FSU should be ecstatic. The Hurricanes not only lost to Cal, they displayed some of the worst clock management I have ever seen. Not that Randy Shannon would ever admit it, of course. From his postgame Q and A...
Q: Do you wish you handled the timeouts better?
A: No. You have to call timeouts in key situations where you don't want to give up a big play. One was a fourth down play which they eventually converted on personnel. Another was something else that happened during the game.
Q: Should Harris have spiked the ball or run out of bounds instead of cutting back inbounds?
A: That's just him trying to make a play, I can't doubt Jacory for that. The key was getting first downs, move the sticks, not spike the ball.
The Canes took half of the game's last minute off the clock with one play and then called their final timeout when the clock was already stopped. Nope, no way that could have been handled better. Keep up the great work, Randy!
It seemed like Auburn's offensive struggles this year trying to transition to the spread meant the Tigers would go back to old school power football under new coach Gene Chizik. Uh, no. If nothing else, things on the Plains won't be boring this year. Those Ole Miss and Arkansas games should be expecially fun.
An Ohio State point guard is leaving after ten games at the school. Anthony Crater says he's interested in transferring to one of five schools, listing Florida as a possibility. Although Crater is talented, with UF already having a commitment from Austin Rivers and Brandin Knight still a strong possibility I doubt the interest will be reciprocated.
You may have heard Colin Cowherd going on and on during his ESPN Radio show about what a college football betting wizard he is. Well, twelve bowl games have been played so far. How's the master handicapper doing? Picking the games straight up - no point spread involved at all - he's 6-6. Color me impressed.