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Offseason Roundtable #8

In an effort to not only increase our chatter about the Cards, but to also increase some reader participation, Edge, RV, and Alan will be doing these roundtables every week. Love the answers? Want to post your own thoughts? Of course you do. And you can do so in the Comments section. Because remember, dear readers, a smarmy sarcastic blog about Ball State athletics is only as good as its small yet powerful reader base. Have at it, boys and girls…

1.) The big news recently has been the reporting of another secondary violation from Tennessee for Lane Kiffin. Buy or sell this as another isolated incident or yet another troubling piece of a disturbing pattern?
RV: This is a very troubling piece, IMO. This shows a massive lack of institutional control, regardless of how you place the blame. I find it ridiculous that this keeps happening in such a public manner, and it’s maddening that Kiffin even gets a shot at being a head coach after being such an ass. It’s insulting to the countless other candidates that would treat this job with the proper respect it deserves. If I’m a Volunteer fan, I’m pretty damn upset that such a loose cannon has followed in Fulmer’s deep footsteps.

Edge: Very disturbing. He has stated that he’d never post anything on a recruit on Twitter because he knows that’s against the rules. Ok Lane, let’s say I do believe you. What I do not believe is that you or your AD would let someone who obviously doesn’t know the rules run your Twitter page. But that’s bullshit. Lane does not know the rules very well, and these infractions, the 11 players who left, the signing of a rapist, and the Florida high school incident really should be grounds for forced retirement. But what do I know…

Alan: You can read what I think about this particular violation in a couple of posts below. Ultimately, it’s either Kiffin being brazenly stupid and/or a complete asshole by giving a virtual middle finger to his compliance office and the NCAA. Or… he and the athletic department are borderline incompetent putting something as public as this in the hands of someone who can’t do it. Regardless of the reasons behind it, it’s yet another little pain in the ass for Kiffin and the Vols. In and of themselves, these are minor minuscule type things. Collectively, they paint a pretty significant picture of Kiffin as a coach in way over his head who has no want, desire, or ability to improve.

2.) With the recent addition of ESPN U to more homes via a deal with Comcast, is this a good or bad thing for the Cardinals, the MAC, and the rest of the midmajor programs?
RV: I’m not sure I follow, how can this be a bad thing? Exposure is always good, and I know that I’m not the only one who will watch football on any channel at any time, so if it gets more MAC games on TV it’s a fantastic situation. Comcast is a fuck, so they don’t deserve any of your money, so that’s the only bad thing. Fucking Comcast.

Edge: Terrible news. No one wants to see a MAC game. No one. Ever. (Ok, it’s actually great news).

Alan: Well, I will take the opposite stance, and not for the simple sake of going against the proverbial grain. The reason why the MAC was allowed to exist and flourish on ESPNU is because it was a secondary type market that wasn’t a flagship network in the ESPN family because it wasn’t in very many homes. However, now that it is, it’s simply an additional station with a large national reach. If ESPN leaves the MAC on it, then yes, it’s great. However, and what I think is highly probable, is that ESPN begins to load their newly minted SEC rights onto the U, or some other BCS league game. Then that’s bad, because frankly, the MAC is running out of networks and week nights. What’s next? Tuesday afternoons?

3.) The Big Ten has had talks about expanding out to a 12th team. Is that good for the Big 10? Who would fit the bill the best?
RV: Depends on who you’re asking. I think it’d be good for the Big 10 because their scheduling makes no sense when a team can avoid PSU/OSU/UM all in the same year. I feel that it’d add to the competitiveness of the Big 10 if they had a similar setup to the SEC (SPEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEED!!!!111) but they need another team to accomplish that. The obvious answer is Notre Dame, which is not going to happen and I won’t discuss it. You’re an idiot if you think that will happen in your lifetime. Let me flip the script real quick, how about you just get rid of Indiana? Now you can actually be the Big 10 and have a conference full of non-Lynch football teams. If you really want to add someone, I vote for TCU. Sure, it makes no sense but they need a real fucking conference at some point and the Big 12 isn’t letting them in anytime soon.

Edge: Meh… it’s all dependent on who would be the 12th team whether or not it’s good for the Big Ten. Really, any team in a mid-major conference that is consistently powerful and that’s geographically close to other Big Ten schools would work. Or, as RV says, they could drop one. I’d like it to be Purdue please.

Alan: Here’s the thing. The Big 10 is about a lot more than simple football. You have to be a solid academic school. The easy answer, as V said, is Notre Dame, but that will never happen, largely because of ND’s massive television contract that they have no intention of sharing. That leaves a couple of other options. When I look at the geography of the Big 10, there’s two schools that they should be looking at. Pittsburgh and Mizzou. Pittsburgh for the great academics, a built in rivalry with Penn State, and a school already in their footprint. That screws the Big East, but so be it. The other more interesting alternative is Mizzou. You allow the Tigers in, draft TCU to fill the hole in the Big 12, and everyone wins. Additionally, it pushes the Big Ten brand into a whole new segment of the country.

4.) There was quite the kerfuffle when it appeared that Notre Dame had selectively included certain seasons and not others in head coach Charlie Weis’ biography. Certainly ADs and administrators put positive spin on things all the time. Is expungement good for the greater advancement of the program or just simply whitewashing a problem?
RV: I think it should be done more often than it currently is, but it’s on the SID to be creative. Everything about the CFB game has become slick and why shouldn’t coaches’ bios be included in that category? Any casual fan knows that Notre Dame had a dismal season in 07 and a disappointing one in 08, I don’t think it needs to be put into his bio. Wikipedia will take care of the rest of the details.

Edge: Omitting what everyone should already know isn’t a huge deal. But it does at least need to be mentioned. Unfortunately when you go 3-9 you can’t just sweep that under the rug and pretend like it didn’t happen. If you want to have integrity, you have to give a whole picture, or maybe at least a half-sentence about a dismal season. It’s not like ND is the only one to do this, but any time Weis is associated with something remotely controversial, you can bet it’ll need to be covered. Poor Charlie.

Alan: As it turns out, this whole “story” was simply a misunderstanding. The records from the poor seasons were in there, just not bolded, underlined, and attention grabbing. I am not a proponent at all of omitting things or whitewashing anything. A coach’s record is a coach’s record, and with Wikipedia and the internet, it’s best to get in front of any potentially damning empirical evidence of incompetence or failure.

5.) The story dominating the sports landscape is Michael Vick’s release from prison. If you’re an owner of an NFL team, do you give him a shot? Will Vick be on a roster come opening day?
RV: Rich Brooks thinks the sports landscape is bullshit. Who cares that Vick has been released from prison, besides pit bull breeders across the country? I’m tired of hearing about stories that aren’t even close to news. Greg Paulus maybe, might have, sort of gotten a try-out according to John Clayton’s merkin. Who cares? Vick might end up on an NFL team. Who cares? Favre fell down a well and hasn’t responded to Peter King’s advances in weeks. Who cares? If you’re going to make up a story and run with it, can we pick something that contains a little bit of substance? If Vick makes it on a roster for opening day, it’ll be a huge black mark on the NFL. The NFL seems to be run by sheep (Jamarcus Russell? Really?) and if ESPN pushes the Vick angle enough, he’ll end up on a team. But if I’m in charge, Vick doesn’t even come up in conversation.

Edge: Tough call… I wouldn’t let him dog-sit while I was away, that’s for sure. He won’t be on a roster in 09, but he may get his shot in 2010. I’d honestly have to feel out the situation as an owner. Is he truly repentant? What has he done to better himself? What can he bring to my team other than baggage? He doesn’t deserve a second chance if I were in charge, but I don’t think he’ll be out of the league forever. Just a hunch.

Alan: As an owner, no. For me, I’d rather lose with character and integrity than win with a bunch of thugs and felons. However, I’m quite positive that someone will be willing to take a flier on Mike Vick. The more troubling thing is whether or not he’s even worth the risk, dog fighting aside. Granted, I’m not an NFL aficionado, but Vick never struck me as a successful QB. He was flashy and very media blitzy but ultimately, he seemed all fluff and no feathers.

Readers… comments… go.

3 Responses

  1. Kiffin cheating? No… say it isn’t so! Guy’s a clown.

    ESPNU to comcast is a great thing for BSU and the rest of the also rans in college football that play there.

    The big10 needs to just bring in notre dame. it’s a natural fit and they already play michigan and msu.

    weis is a joke. the guy sucks and no amount of record changing is going to change that.

    vick is a clown.

  2. Clown college? Not quite. Here comes the hate train I’m sure…

    The reason Kiffin looks so toolish right now is he swatted the high holy bee’s nest of SEC fandom. UT fans are suspect but no more so than any other new coach. Bryce Brown et al helps keep us grounded.
    Back to the bee’s nest. People get bored stroking it to their Tebow pics so they need something to do. They HATED Fulmer and the most he gave them in response was a golly gee no comment. The Kiffykins hate-fest is the only response to the best coaching staff in the SEC. Tis better to hate than to soil one’s undies. We shall save that for the regular season. Hate away…

  3. Kiffin looks so toolish because of his own toolish behavior. No amount of media spin could have made Kiffin the court jester that he’s turning out to be. It’s not hate when it’s true and I don’t know how you can claim that UT has the best coaching staff in the SEC when not a single SEC game has been coached by your head coach. No one is soiling themselves over Lane Kiffin, that much is sure.

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