Wednesday, March 11, 2009

SEC = Select Everyone's Choice?

What number makes up a college basketball team? On the court, it's five players. By scholarship count, it's thirteen. Or, if it's the SEC coaches All-Conference team, it's eighteen! Five players, including Nick Calathes, were unanimously selected as first teamers. So why are there eight guys on the "first team"? The conference does this crap every year, and it's rarely looked sillier than this one. The media team will be anounced at the SEC Tournament in Tampa, which is where I'll be beginning this afternoon.

Life just became more difficult for all the teams on the fringe of the NCAA tournament thanks to Butler gagging on their home court in the Horizon League final yesterday. they'll still make it into the tournament, but Cleveland State will take a spot from somebody who would have made it otherwise. Couple this with Creighton losing before the finals of their conference over the weekend and there may be two unexpected spots gone already. The big loser yesterday was Providence. Thanks to DePaul upsetting Cincinnati, the Friars will get to play one game against a team with no regular season Big East wins and then Louisville. That's no way to boost a resume that needed plenty of help.

Lane Kiffin claims he didn't make the comments attributed to him in the story mentioned in yesterday's blog. A player and his high school coach each say Kiffin told him he would end up pumping gas if he signed with South Carolina rather than Tennessee. Kiffin, who has shown incredibly poor judgment in his public speaking, claims he didn't do that. He has a reason to lie about it - the attributed comment makes Kiffin appear to be a completely immature person with no idea how to deal with not getting his way other than to start lobbing insults at the person who turned him down. What reason would the recruit or his coach have to make it up? I can't find any - the player was even described as not wanting to talk much about the incident in the original report. That's hardly the way you'd do it if you looking to hammer someone with a made up story. Given Kiffin's behavior toward Pahokee after the Nu'Keese Richardson fiasco, I have no trouble believing the story is completely true.

Years ago, Oklahoma's president told the state legislature that "we want a university that our football team can be proud of". He was being sarcastic, but no one noticed. I don't know if the OU prez got his way or not, but the president in Austin is trying something similar. If Texas doesn't get relief from a state law requiring it to admit the top ten percent of any high school in the state, William Powers says it could be curtains for the Longhorn athletic program by 2015. This guy's lucky he isn't a poker player, because that's a terrible bluff attempt. There's a better chance I will replace Jimmy Fallon as host of NBC's Late Night program by 2015 than there is of Texas dropping athletics.

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