Billy Donovan's coaching tree has sprouted another branch faster than expected. Assistant Shaka Smart will take over from Anthony Grant at VCU. It's great news for him, but a tough break for UF. Smart is a young, energetic coach who was considered an up and comer when Donovan hired him from Clemson in June. He would have been a great asset to the staff over the next few years, but when an opportunity like this comes along you have to jump on it. Smart's the fourth Donovan assistant to land a head coaching job, and all to this point have been successful. Because of that and the trend of Gator coaches getting HC gigs, there will be great interest among the ranks of talented assistants. Hopefully Donovan finds someone closer to Smart than to Lewis Preston.
With Kentucky having finally gotten Calipari to agree to come, Georgia faces even more pressure to get their hire right. Swing and a miss on their first attempt, as Mike Anderson decides to stay at Missouri rather than try to rebuild Dennis Felton's failure. Hard to argue the decision, and if they're foolish enough to go after Jeff Capel of Oklahoma then UGA will find itself 0 for 2 on the coaching search. Arizona and Memphis are better jobs that are open right now too. Do the Dogs settle for pursuing Clemson's Oliver Purnell or Frank Haith, or is there another "big time" candidate left on their list?
Jay Cutler has successfully whined his way out of Denver. Now the question is where he's headed. I could stomach Tampa Bay giving up the 19th pick in the draft for him, but anything more than that and I'll take a pass. The Bucs have already spent their second round pick on Kellen Winslow, so giving up a third or starting to cannibalize next year's draft would basically ensure they will acquire no top young talent until 2011. For a QB who has acted like a spoiled child because the Broncos considered trading him, that's not worth it. If guys like Joe Montana, Steve Young, Warren Moon, Jerry Rice and Eric Dickerson could handle being traded during their career, a deal being discussed and not even happening really shouldn't have traumatized Cutler for life.
It's been puzzling to see what's become of Dontrelle Willis the past few years. He went downhill with Florida and since being traded has cratered in Detroit. Now Willis is on the Tigers disabled list with an anxiety disorder he says was diagnosed through blood tests. Psychiatrists are mystified, saying that simply doesn't make any sense. Whatever the issue, Detroit is trying to find a way to avoid eating 22 million more of salary for Willis the next two years. If he's on the disabled list, they may be able to shake half of that onto insurance. Willis's mysterious "illness" may actually be a case of Severe Bottom Line Depression for Tiger ownership.
This can't come as any great surprise, knowing Sacha Baron Cohen's history, but his movie Bruno has been assigned an NC-17 rating. I'm sure he'll make enough cuts to get the movie into theaters, but I'm not sure this one will be as big a hit as Borat. That movie made a lot of people look stupid and let the audience laugh at them, but this sounds like it will genuinely creep viewers out. Whatever happens, we'll always have the memory of Bruno's visit to an Alabama football game. I'm guessing Shaud Williams won't go see the new film.