Thursday, April 2, 2009

Tim Floyd? Was Kelvin Sampson's phone busy?

Dan Mullen joined me on my Columbia show a couple of days ago to talk about how things are going for him so far in Starkville. He acknowledged that splitting the time leading up to the national title game took more out of him than he had anticipated, and is looking forward to this year's matchup with UF. Mullen also admitted when Urban Meyer's staff came to UF they didn't really focus on what the personnel were capable of as they put together the offensive scheme. He says he'll look to avoid repeating that mistake at MSU. It's not surprising that was the case - they were running five wide sets in 2005 with guys like Gavin Dickey and Kyle Morgan on the field - but I've never heard anyone from the staff actually acknowledge it before. One thing Mullen clearly has picked up from Meyer is the idea of using the spring game as a marketing tool. You can bid on the chance to coach in the MSU spring game right now. Considering last year's MSU spring game went to OT in a scoreless tie, there won't be much pressure on you if you win.

After being turned down by a variety of prominent names, apparently including Tennessee's Bruce Pearl, Arizona may have found their man to replace Lute Olson. Southern Cal's Tim Floyd has accepted the job according to KTAR radio in Phoenix. I'm not sure I buy that report yet, since broadcast outlets historically are terrible at these kind of reports during coaching searches, but there's no question Floyd's a serious candidate. I don't get this pairing for either side. Is Floyd making this move just for a cash grab? This was a disappointing regular season for the Trojans, but they still won the Pac-10 tournament to get to the NCAAs. There's good talent coming back and you're working with an incredible recruiting area. In Tucson you're following a legend and the turmoil the program's been through the last couple of years means there is little to work with right now. As for Arizona, is a 55 year old coach with a history of recruiting lots of sketchy characters really the best you can do? Floyd's farthest tournament runs were two Sweet 16 trips ten years apart. What's so amazing about this guy to make him worth what it's going to take to get him to leave L.A.? Bad fit for both sides.

Jim Leyland has looked like death warmed over for the last two decades, so he's not typically a guy I'd talk to for health advice. The Detroit manager did provide some words to live by recently though. "It's not good when you light up two Marlboros at the same time at 3 a.m., washing it down with a glass of chocolate milk." Good to know - maybe the Tigers can make Leyland's health tips one of their regular features on their radio network. I once saw David Lamm eat a doughnut while smoking a cigarette, all as he was on air doing his talk show. No word on whether Leyland's okay with that as long as it's one cigarette at a time.

Not sure exactly how former Gator Brent Wright's playing status with his team in Croatia being in question caught the attention of the well known sports blog Deadspin, but it did. Wright apparently overslept and missed a road game, which some are attributing to his big night on the town as a Croatian nightclub. Looks like Wright is having a good time overseas.

I've never been a big fan of April Fool's Day, because most people have no idea how to do it right. Making up a lie and reporting it like it's real is not particularly funny, especially when things like stock values and people in fear of losing their jobs can be affected by it. Car and Driver magazine learned that the hard way yesterday, when they decided it would be hilarious to claim Barack Obama was insisting Chevy and Dodge end their NASCAR participation as part of their ongoing federal aid package. Laughing yet? At least UConn big man Hasheem Thabeet put his own name out there on his Twitter feed as having failed a drug test and claimed he was out for the Final Four. A few minuts later he fed the info it was just a prank. I'm sure the UConn Sports Info Department greatly appreciates Thabeet's sense of humor.

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