Friday, August 19, 2011

The Brewing Hurricane in Coral Gables

They probably were fighting over who got the yacht vs. the strip club that weekend.

The NCAA re-emphasized yesterday that the death penalty option is in fact still available for use:
"If that’s an option that the [NCAA] Committee on Infractions believes is appropriate in any one case — it doesn’t matter which one it is — I’m not opposed to them using that. We need to have penalties that serve as effective deterrents so that people who are doing the calculation in their head [as to] whether or not the risks and rewards line up, recognize the price of being caught.” -- NCAA President Mark Emmert
Forget the "atomic bomb" and "the results were so catastrophic that now we'll do anything to avoid dropping another one,” it's 2011 baby. Matt Hinton's musings are confirmed.

I have been pondering though whether the NCAA is naturally drawn to hammer a little harder on private schools, such as the University of Miami, USC and SMU because of lower political risk to the NCAA when taking on a private entity, or whether private schools are naturally drawn to screw up due to the internal structuring of private schools.

Private schools are not subject to states' Open Records or Sunshine laws, allowing an administration and athletic department to filter out even the most mundane information from the media. Private schools do not answer to state legislative subcommittees and are not forced to make an annual song-and-dance for state funding amidst budget cutbacks. The lack of information flowing out of a private university allows small problems to fester into big nasty problems (needing more than Bernie's ultimate problem solver), and the relative financial independence of a private institution results in an equally slow 180 turnaround by not putting out$ide state funding on the line.

The detailed allegations span two coaching administrations, apparent knowledge by the coaches and administrators, and was largely overseen by an athletic director who also had a part in Miami's more recent football scandals, including a drug testing scandal and where 57 players falsified Pell Grant applications to the tune of $220k. Miami's program since its rise to national prominence in the 1980s has been built on a shaky foundation and indeed may be "broken beyond repair."

If I was an obnoxious "The U" singing-football fan, player-dropout, or alleged alum, I would be frightened. In my mind, the modern baseline for sanctions by the NCAA will probably begin with USC's recent sanctions, be flavored with a little bit of 1980s Kentucky basketball punishment, and garnished with everything just shy of a SMU penalty.

Monday, August 15, 2011

The Countdown 2011: 19 Days to Go

QB Mike Tamburo, #6

With the Munson-esque cautious skepticism of our first game starting to crop up online, it definitely is starting to feel like football is almost here, with seemingly only a quick trip to stock up on bourbon left before kickoff on Labor Day weekend.
Phillips-Union Cherry blend; goes down surprisingly smooth at September Gameday temperature.

One interesting blurb that I read in the spring and immediately forgot may have a slight impact for our first game: redshirt sophomore transfer QB Mike Tamburo, #6 of the Georgia Bulldawgs (and formerly #9 of the Boise State Smurfs).

The beat writers mentioning that Tamburo has not been asked yet about the Broncos' playbook, implying that game planning for Boise State has (obviously) not yet begun, brought the transfer QB back to mind.

Tamburo, who graduated from North Gwinnett in 2009 and chose Boise over several other D-I schools, suffered a torn ACL his first season up North and lingered at the bottom of the BSU depth chart ever since.

What sort of a weapon could Tamburo be? Inevitably he will be part of the scout team offense during Boise State prep, either in a wide receiver role (which he filled part-time with Boise) or more obviously as the scout QB (as seen in his Youtube HS highlight reel, or as a former "Brother in Arms"-- see below). With the (theoretical) 20-hour NCAA limit on mandatory team activities capping practice time in-season and the 29 practice limit on fall preseason practices, any insights on quickly implementing a realistic BSU simulation should help the Dawgs.

The kickoff game versus Boise State will likely not be of the 2005 vintage; any insight on the margins about the Smurf offense, player tendencies which may not show up on tape or ability to assist game film analysis will help out immeasurably.

Expect to hear a few more blurbs on Tamburo as your liquor shelves are stocked and Gameday crawls oh so slowly nearer...
The newest Dawg in his former colors on the far left. Maybe Boise State will reprint this poster and sell it in a similar fashion as the Cleveland Cavs' owner.