Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Zebras running wild

The SEC confirmed yesterday that the personal foul call on Arkansas during UF's drive to tie the game at 20 was incorrect. I couldn't understand what they were thinking when they made the call in the first place - they clearly blew it. Having said that, I've heard people throwing out this call and a pass interference flag as proof for their conspiracy theories about the refs helping Florida win the game because the SEC wants an undefeated matchup in Atlanta. That is a load of horse crap. After the score was 20-20, there was never another penalty called the rest of the game. You're telling me that refs looking to corruptly affect the outcome of the game couldn't find a holding call anywhere on the Arkansas drive to a potential game winning FG or give the UF team they were supposedly "helping" a boost on their final drive? The botched penalty took UF from 2nd and 10 at the Arkansas 20 to first and goal from the ten. Anyone who claims that bad call's why the Gators won the game is either being obtuse intentionally or doesn't know enough about football for their opinion to be taken seriously.

The SEC basketball media has put UF basketball fifth in the East for this year. In reality, it's Kentucky and Tennessee in one clump followed by Vandy, South Carolina and UF in another. Any combination of those teams in those spots makes perfect sense. I'll be going to Birmingham for Thursday's basketball media day. It should be interesting to see what the mindset is about this Florida team, and I'm really looking forward to talking to Billy Donovan about what he sees so far. I don't think he'd ever say it to the press, but I don't think he's missing Nick Calathes all that much.

The call has officially come from one of the primary columnists who covers Illinois: Ron Zook must go. "It's broke. And coach Ron Zook has no idea how to fix it." pretty well sums up everything that's happened since he got the UF job in 2002. I really thought Zook would have a decent run in Champaign - make them a seven/eight win a year team and eventually get bounced like Glen Mason did at Minnesota when the fans got sick of going to the Sun Bowl. Instead, he gave them one spectacular fluke run to Pasadena (although not as Big Ten champs) and has been melting down from the second he stepped onto the field there. Looks like some NFL team's going to have a well known special teams coach next season.

The previously threatened political action committee for a college football playoff has made its public debut. Just can't see many people feeling so strongly about the need for a playoff that they'll spend money on this concept. The folks running this have to demonstrate a clear plan for why their approach would achieve success, because otherwise why would anyone give them money when there are so many established worthy causes out there? Maybe they should promise to spend some of the PAC's funds on lobbying for fulltime, better trained college officials.

Jim Nantz is getting divorced from his wife of 26 years, which has opened up his finances and personal life for public consumption. This story from the Stamford Advocate detailing their hearing is blowing people's minds. The testimony about him having a 29 year old girlfriend or being upset that he couldn't hang an oil painting of himself in their house is the tabloid stuff, but what blows me away is that Nantz makes just under 8 million dollars a year. JIM NANTZ! He's a solid enough broadcaster, but have you ever said "I can't wait to hear Nantz call this game?" Most people would watch the Masters or Final Four if Lenny from down at the bar was doing the play by play. Who in the world did CBS think they needed to spend that kind of money to outbid for the services of Jim Nantz?

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