Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Dooley watched a lot of Hogan's Heroes as a kid

Yesterday's post mentioned Brian Kelly already being under intense (and I would say unfair) scrutiny midway through his first year at Notre Dame. I'm not sure why people expect to be able to have instant success with new coaches taking over unsuccessful programs, but they certainly seem to in a lot of places. One guy who's beginning to make me think he's earned the criticism is Tennessee's Derek Dooley. The Vols are not a bad team because of the coaching of Dooley or his staff. The lack of depth and elite players resulting from three different head coaches and staffs in three years means they simply don't have enough horses to win against anyone decent in the SEC right now. On the other hand, they should be good enough to not go to double overtime with UAB. That's not the bone I have to pick with Dooley though. Week after week at his press gathering he downgrades his team's chances. In doing that yesterday, he came up with an ineffective analogy between his team and the Germans at D-Day. That's just not very bright. Between this, the "we need to learn to wash ourselves properly" stuff and his poor handling of multiple transfer requests since he arrived, I'm starting to wonder if the job is just too much for Dooley. Tennessee still would be insane to make any move before he gets at least three years and likely four, but he's likely burned through a lot of good will (for not being Lane Kiffin if nothing else) from folks in Knoxville really quickly.

At least Dooley's not changing his offensive coordinator right in the middle of the season, without even waiting for a bye week. Vanderbilt's Robbie Caldwell has made that move for his squad, meaning they're on their third OC and second head coach this season. It's not a formula for success, that's for sure. Unlike Dooley, Caldwell doesn't know he'll back next season. That doesn't mean he should be making desperation moves to try and win enough to keep the job, which is what this feels like. Having watched Vandy against South Carolina the other night, play calling's not their main issue. An overall lack of offensive talent is, and I'm not sure how changing the person making the decisions again is supposed to do something about that.

With the Giants likely ending Tony Romo's season last night in Dallas, there will be plenty of speculation about Jerry Jones making a coaching move to dump Wade Phillips. It's worth remembering that he's never fired anyone during the season, and its hard to see what the benefit is of doing it now. Remember, offensive coordinator Jason Garrett is supposed to be the coach in waiting. Putting him in charge for the first time with Jon Kitna as his quarterback does not seem like a formula for success. I'm guessing I could have gotten really good odds on the Bucs to have more wins than Dallas this year, but it sure looks like that's going to happen.

Apparently someone in the ESPN hierarchy thought they didn't have enough conflicts of interest and decided this would be a good way to add one. If ESPN partners with Texas to create the new Longhorn channel, they'll officially be business partners on an individual basis in a relationship unlike any the network has with any other school. There's no way to get around that being a potential problem for analysts who may be legitimately praising the Horns but have people wondering if they're doing so because of ESPN's business goals. ESPN controls most of the postseason setup at this point - will they put pressure on selection committees for their business partner Texas to get better bowl bids? Considering how much grief the guys in Bristol already get for supposedly favoring certain conferences, you'd think they would realize this isn't a great idea. In reality though, they're too big to care what anyone thinks about them. Hopefully a legit competitor will eventually emerge.

The Florida football team and visiting alums weren't the only ones having a miserable Homecoming weekend when the Gators lost to Mississippi State. ESPNU's Elizabeth Moreau, who had been in town previously working the sidelines for the Kentucky football game, wound up getting fooled by a prank phone call into smashing the window out of her room at the Hilton Garden Inn with the lid of her room's toilet tank. Moreau was in town to work a volleyball match this time, so I don't know if she actually did or not. Amazingly the losers doing this have had quite a bit of success fooling people with this type of routine over the years. Moreau has taken her Twitter page down altogether and I'm sure she feels humiliated. She's been on the big Ten Network as a volleyball analyst but had just begun to transition to football stuff as well. I hope this doesn't short circuit her TV career - no one deserves to have something like that happen to them.

1 comment:

Matt said...

Wow...not even funny in the least. Hope that guy gets arrested.