Archive for June, 2015

Booted LSU DT says: “I’ll be back”

LSU’s dismissal of redshirt freshman defensive tackle Trey Lealaimatafao on Monday night showed that Les Miles actually has some stones.

After his arrest for hitting a woman after she attempted to stop him battering her boyfriend, Miles immediately suspended the player – who had caused him disciplinary issues last year as well – and then dismissed him on Monday night.

Of course, there are worries about LSU’s depth, according to Bleacher Report. Lealaimatafao would have either seen time on the field or started for the Tigers, and now he’s gone, there are holes.

But there we go. LSU will be OK. Lealaimatafao’s next home may well be jail….unless his claims that it was racism that brought him into the bar fight in the first place stand up.

And he’s tweeted that he’ll return soon. “You know I’ll be back on the scene in a year or 2,” he said.

He won’t be returning to the SEC, that’s for sure.

Auburn vs Oregon: We can’t wait!!

OK, so we might hate the idea of one-off non-conference games during the regular season, but we have to be honest, the confirmation that Auburn’s going to play Oregon in 2019 at JerryWorld is INCREDIBLE.

WE. CAN’T. WAIT.

Of course, we would have preferred a home-and-home. And so would Oregon season ticket holders (Eugene’s a 32 hour drive from Dallas). And possibly Auburn season ticket holders (10 hrs, 52 mins).

But the TV companies? Definitely not. The conferences? Definitely not. This is a top echelon conference showcase between two superpowers. And the schools? It’s going to be a nice payday, thanks very much. And if they win, their chances of going to the play-off (which might be up to 8 teams by 2019) skyrocket, and if they lose and win through the season, their chances of going to the play-off skyrocket. The ADs don’t look bad.

We can’t wait because if the way Auburn and Oregon have been set up over the last few years, there are going to be a heap of points. And remember: The last game in 2011 between these two wasn’t too bad, after all.

Quinnen Williams: Alabama over Auburn

Four-star defensive tackle Quinnen Williams has decided to go to Alabama instead of Auburn.

The 6-4, 265lb star from Wenonah School in Birmingham, AL had committed to Auburn before de-committing from The Plains on June 5th without reason and looking over his options.

AL.com noted that Williams was Auburn’s third decommittment of the year.

ESPN Scout said about the player: “Williams is a defensive line prospect with very good overall size and outstanding playing strength with a frame that can continue to be developed and support more good mass with time in Alabama’s weight program. The ESPN 300 defensive lineman can use that combination of size and strength to be a physical and stout run defender.” He was also described as a “good player in the trenches“.

Writer Craig Haubert noted that Williams could probably use a redshirt after coming on board in Tuscaloosa.

Williams is rated the 12th-best player in Alabama, 33rd-best defensive tackle in the nation, and 378th player in the nation overall by 247sports.com.

 

Ole Miss was also said to be interested.

 

 

Ole Miss star arrested

Ole Miss offensive line star Laremy Tunsil has been arrested on domestic violence charges.

Tunsil was arrested for allegedly punching his stepfather after he pushed his mother. Apparently Tunsil turned himself into police after he threw the punch, Coach Hugh Freeze told the press.

Freeze seems to be taking Tunsil’s side on the affair. “Laremy realizes he could have handled it differently,” the Ole Miss coach said. “I am proud of him for standing up for his mother and protecting his family.”

Freeze added that charges against the stepfather, Lindsey Miller, has been filed by Tunsil and his mother, Desiree Tunsil. It is not known as to whether Miller has filed charges against Tunsil.

Miller has accused Tunsil of driving around Oxford with football agents. He also said that he put out his hand to shake Tunsil’s hand, and was pushed against a wall.

The 6-5, 305lb player is thought to be a certain first-round pick in the 2016 NFL Draft – if he chooses to leave after his junior year. His 2014 season was curtailed by injury in The Peach Bowl game against TCU.

20 Things To Do During The SEC Summer

I miss my SEC Football. I miss my falls. I miss the summer. Everything’s going far too slowly.

Hands up if you can’t do another Saturday wedding. Or another Saturday visit to your parents or grandparents. Or another baseball game (and there’s no college baseball anymore). Hands up if you’re constantly checking the calendar and counting down to the first weekend of the college football season, and praying that God will bring it over at the speed of a Texas lightning storm.

Anyway, while you’re waiting, here’s 20 SEC-ish things to do during the dog days of summer….

1. Check up on recruiting

It’s something to get excited about. And if your team loses on a recruit, you can be pissed and generate yourself more rage going into the season. Or if your team beats a team to a recruit, you can be happy. Or pray that the player stays loyal. Which in Georgia’s case, is a rarity.

2. Check the police logs

School’s out for the summer, which means SEC players are bound to be doing something stupid. Leading the way are Alabama and LSU, but Georgia’s due. Because Georgia. Also, look for Clemson outside of the conference. Their kicker just Clemson’d himself. With cocaine.

3. Re-read the schedule

Re-read the schedule to try and work out which is going to be the 3.30pm CBS game. And which ones are going to be at night. And which ones are going to be at 12pm. And if you’re an Alabama fan, feel pissed because the game against Wisconsin – which could have been a great home-and-home which would have meant sun by the lake by Camp Randall next year (or this year) – has been stolen by the schools’ ADs, essentially making you pay more for less on your season ticket.

4. Look at your season ticket

And try and work out why in the hell you’re paying the school not only the season ticket price, but also the ‘seat donation’ price. Why? Because you don’t want to lose the tickets that you’ve had and have been in your family for years. And you don’t want to get screwed like Texas fans.

5. Try and work out tailgates

We know it’s September, but it’s never too early to think about grills, when to leave for your tailgate spot (or The Grove’s case, when to pay someone else to GET your tailgate spot), food, and when to start marinating that steak. And when’s a good time to start getting into those mixed drinks. Also, try and work out if you enjoying tailgating with that group from down the road, and see if you can avoid them. There has to be a way, right?

6. Watch SEC games on DVD

There have been so many great SEC games over the years. If  you love your SEC Football and love your college football, then why not start with Alabama and watch one great Alabama/Arkansas/Auburn/Florida/Georgia/Kentucky/LSU/Mississippi State/Ole Miss/ Missouri/ South Carolina/ Tennessee/ Texas A&M/ Vanderbilt game? And when that cycle finishes, watch another round of games. And another. And another. Re-configure for date or season order. Or National Championship Order. It’ll get the excitement going.

7. Sit on YouTube and watch player highlights

And hammer through highlight reels of your favourite players bulldozing/ tackling/ throwing the winning TD/ catching the winning INT, just to get the juices flowing. And boy, the videos will.

8. Sit on YouTube and watch stadium highlights

It’s pretty cool watching fan coverage of stadiums rocking. Alabama singing “Dixieland delight” is always good (although now banned). Tennessee’s “Rocky Top”. Texas A&M’s different battle hymns (and if you really want, “Midnight Yell”). South Carolina’s “In The Air Tonight”. Florida’s “Swamp Chomp”. Watch as our stadiums go checkerboard, go red, go black, go white. Watch as they clang, clap, whistle, growl.

9. Sit on YouTube and watch players and coaches your daddy told you about

The Bear. Larry Munson on Herschel Walker and burning up St Simon’s and Jekyll Island. Bo Jackson. Jo Namath. Peyton. Eli. Archie. Steve Spurrier’s Florida teams. Tim Couch. Arkansas hating Texas. Johnny Football or – when they weren’t in the SEC – the original Wreckin’ Crew. When Peerless was Peerless. Fletcher Cox. Julio. Ingram. Tebow. Jay Cutler. Billy Cannon. Keep on going. If you think there’s a hole in your knowledge for a SEC Football player who was good, there’s probably a hole in your knowledge.

10. Rank your mascots

Rank your mascots in terms of scariness. We’d put Mike The Tiger at the top, but that’s just us. And also remember to email the University of Florida asking for a live alligator.

11. Try and work out….

Who in the hell’s going to the QB at Georgia, Ole Miss, South Carolina, Tennessee, Vanderbilt and Florida. Hell, even Auburn’s up in the air. Then go to Vegas and see if you can get guaranteed odds on each of your choices being the starter on Game 1. And defensively, try and work out how your team’s defense is going to stop Leonard Fournette, Derrick Henry, Nick Chubb, Alex Collins, Jonathan Williams, or Gus Malzahn’s offense. If your team has either Fournette, Henry, Chubb, Collins, Williams or is Auburn, gloat a little.

12. Try and work out…

How in the hell your SEC team lost that game to [add SEC rival’s name here]. Stew on it.

13. Polish your bell

I’m talking about cowbells and Mississippi State. Duh.

14. Make dumb wagers with your buddy

Dumb wagers include:

A) Georgia not letting their fans down at least one game.

B) LSU’s QBs throwing for touchdowns than interceptions.

C) Kentucky winning the SEC. Same goes for Vanderbilt.

D) Arkansas’ special teams NOT doing something stupid, costing them a big game (see Texas A&M and Alabama ’14 for details)

E) Nick Saban remaining calm and controlled on the sideline. At his own players.

F) Steve Spurrier saying something nasty about ________ [add team here]

G) Will Muschamp remaining calm and controlled on the sideline. At the refs.

H) Les Miles going through a whole season and not doing something stupid

I) Missouri not having defenses than can tackle. Tennessee having wide receivers who can catch (welcome back, Marquez North!!)

J) Florida having a 180-degree turnaround in their offense. Give Jim McElwain time, folks. This team will probably scrape .500.

K) Auburn and Texas A&M actually having good, solid defenses. Ole Miss adding to theirs.

L) Wright Thompson writing about SEC Football. And then narrating it for College Gameday.

M) Gary Danielson not saying something ****ing stupid. Because he ALWAYS says something stupid.

15) Look forward to….

College Gameday coming to your city. The over/under on the amount of times they’ll come to a SEC school is six, since last year they came to SEC schools SEVEN times, including twice for Alabama. Bring signs. Bring Katy Perry. And have a good time. Especially as Chris Fowler’s going full-time in the commentary booth and Rece Davis is picking up the slack. He was pretty good as the basketball guy.

16) Book the away game

Make sure that this will be your year to go on the away game to a SEC school you’ve never visited before. If you’ve never visited Athens, Ga, then you’re doing yourself a disservice. Missouri and Texas A&M could be difficult day trips, unless you live near those places.

17) Listen to College Football-related podcasts

We love SB Nation’s “The Solid Verbal” and “Shutdown Fullcast”, as well as Fox Sports’ “The Audible”. They’ve kept us sane for the months.

18) Read the College Football Preview issues

Buy them next month. And read. And then read again. And again. And again. You’ll be an expert. We particularly liked ESPN’s College Football Preview issue, which has Oklahoma State in the play-off. Yes, Oklahoma State.

19) Go to the bar….

And order a bourbon. And a beer. (NOTE: THIS MIGHT BE THE RESULT OF NO.12) It’s calling ‘preparing for the season’. And find someone wearing a SEC-related hoodie or shirt to talk to about college football. We met a guy in San Diego wearing a LSU shirt a few weeks’ ago, and immediately struck up a conversation about LSU’s quarterbacks. Thankfully for him, Anthony Jennings has been arrested so that ends any QB controversy.

20) During and after the bar…..

Get into long and rambling debates on why this is your team’s year. And make the stupid bets outlined in No.14. Let’s hope that if you lose, you don’t have to ‘go naked’ somewhere public.

Vandy rape case declared mistrial

 

 

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The Vanderbilt rape case has been declared a mistrial.

The case was thrown out because the jury foreman did not admit that he was once the victim of a sexual assault.

Corey Batey and Brandon Vandenburg had both been accused of crimes of aggravated rape and sexual battery, and were found guilty five months ago on five counts of the former and two counts of the latter.

According to CBS, both players had been waiting sentencing before the revelations took place, which might mean that they avoid decades of jail-time.

The trial, CBS noted, “featured graphic video and photographic evidence showing the unconscious female student being violated in the dorm room“, accusing the players of owning that footage.

Two other players – Jaborian McKenzie and Brandon Banks – are still awaiting whether their cases will be ‘mistrialed’.

Prosecutors have said that the case will be retried. Both Batey and Vandenburg have to wear tracking anklets so police know their whereabouts.

 

BOTTOM LINE: I’m sorry, but I’m too disgusted to go into more detail about this for the time being.

Removing the Confederate Flag won’t rob the SEC of racism

In South Carolina last week, the world was appalled when a Dylann Roof walked into Emanuel African Methodist Church in Charleston and shot it up, killing nine people. It was one of the most unspeakable tragedies since…..the last unspeakable tragedy involving weapons and innocent people.

Immediately the debate wasn’t about how this kid became more and more enraged at black people, it became about guns and more’s the case, the Confederate Flag. The flag, which still flies high at the State Capital in Charleston, is a symbol of racism for many people, yet the State government has refused to do anything about it (well, they just passed a vote that they will TALK about it at least). The flag is also an emblem of the ‘Southern Thing’, where people below the Mason-Dixon (or should we say ‘Dixie’) line sport it proudly to show they aren’t related in any way to ‘those people up there’.

‘Burn the flag!’ they shouted in the streets of Twitter. ‘Burn the people that wear the flag!’, they screamed.

Well, Walmart, Sears, Amazon and EBay have all stopped selling the confederate flag. PR move or wise move? Depends what the cynics feel. I’m inclined to feel the former, bearing in mind that the confederate flag’s been a symbol of racism a lot long than any of these companies have been around, and they had no problem up til now in selling it. I’m happy to keep it out of people’s hands. Especially the racist idiots who will use a shooting like this as some sort of circle-jerk celebration they can have while burning a cross (WAIT! THAT DOESN’T GO ON ANYMORE!!).

I love the South, I love football, I love our hospitality, I love (maybe too much) our food and beverages, I love our weather (sometimes), and I love the feeling of being – yes – a Southerner. If a Southerner can’t be a proud Southerner without having a stupid flag, then they should really go and seek professional help. The South is worth being proud of.

I’m pretty miffed that NASCAR – who is very much tied into the ‘Southern thing’, despite racing a ton of laps in other places other than the South now has put out a statement about the Charleston shooting, but the Southeastern Conference has shut its mouth. It needs to open it, and fast. The only person to have opened his mouth about the South Carolina shooting is Steve Spurrier, who called for the flag to be removed in 2007.

But let’s go back to the flag. Taking it down, illegalizing like the swaztika and shooting any member who wears it as a patch – for me – while being a good thing, won’t suddenly rid the South of racists. It certainly won’t rid our football stadiums of them. They won’t stop people on The Grove referring to black folk as ‘them’. It won’t stop idiots like the guy I met in Baton Rouge calling Barack Obama something unrepeatable. It won’t stop white cops wrongly beating up innocent black people, and it won’t stop idiots tweeting me to tell me that sooner or later, a race war is coming between black and white people (since been deleted because it was either that or throwing the phone across the room and jumping on it). It won’t stop black people not talking to white people or calling them ‘crackers’. It won’t stop ‘historically white’ and ‘historically black’ fraternities at our SEC universities.

If we are truly going to see change, it’s not going to be just about changing a goddamn flag. It’s about changing a mindset. And it’s about changing mindsets from Gainseville to the Tennessee Appalachians, from New Orleans to Austin, from Alabama to Oxford to Starkville to Athens to Atlanta to Charlotte to small farming towns.

If anyone’s got any ideas, let me know.

LSU starting QB Jennings arrested for burglary

LSU starting quarterback Anthony Jennings has been arrested according to reports.

Jennings, DB Dwayne Thomas and DL Maquedius Bain were all booked into a Baton Rouge jail after being charged with “unauthorized entry and simple burglary“.

As well as Jennings, Thomas started five games for the Tigers last season, posting 24 tackles.

According to a report by ‘The Advocate’, the players entered an apartment on LSU’s West Campus “with the presumed intent to retrieve items said to have been stolen from Jennings’ apartment on June 10 — a MacBook Air, three pairs of shoes and a PlayStation 4.

After breaking in, the three players (and four others, as it’s been reported) – as witnessed by the victim’s roommate – made off with some shoes and a PlayStation 4. The paper noted that the laptop had come back to Jennings a week earlier.

Local police booked Jennings and the two others for unauthorized entry, although Thomas was noted to have been the person who smashed the door in with his shoulder.

This news comes after DT Trey Lealaimatafao was arrested on Thursday for robbery and hitting a woman.

All four players have been indefinitely suspended by LSU head coach Les Miles. He said, according to a tweet by The Advocate’s Ross Dellenger: “We have suspended these players. It has been our policy to suspend players who have been involved with legal issues. I have met with all the players extensively….This is an on-going investigation.”

THE BOTTOM LINE: Jennings is thought to be LSU’s starter for 2015, despite having an inconsistent 2014. Jennings went 111-227 for 1,611 yards and 11 TDs, with 7 INTs. At LSU’s Spring Game he was said to be much-improved alongside QB competitor Brandon Harris. Although now, with this news, it looks at though Harris is favorite.

 

 

LSU DT arrested for punching woman

LSU defensive tackle Trey Lealaimatafao has been suspended by head coach Les Miles after being arrested for “simple battery and simple robbery”, the Advocate has reported.

The redshirt freshman was involved in a fight outside a Baton Rouge bar on Tuesday, where he dug through the pockets of a male victim after he and a group of other- unnamed- suspects, beat the man unconscious outside Reggie’s Bar on Tuesday.

Even if that wasn’t enough, Lealaimatafao then punched the victim’s girlfriend in the face with a closed fist as she tried to get in the way of the attack.

He has been remanded on $15,000 bail, but hasn’t yet left jail.

This is Lealaimatafao’s third off-the-field arrest, after he was arrested for stealing a bicycle and he also punched a gym window.

Lealaimatafao was ranked as the 55th-best player in Texas and the country’s 33rd-best defensive tackle by 24-7sports.com

THE LOW-DOWN: With any luck, Les Miles will throw Lealaimatafao off the team. Mind you, we said that about Jeremy Hill. 

 

Vandy gets 3-star recruit

Three-star defensive tackle Cameron Tidd has committed to Vanderbilt.

6-3, 265lb Tidd, from Centre Grove HS in Greenwood, IN, is ranked as the 22nd-best player in Indiana, the 103rd-best defensive tackle in the country, and the 1,678th player overall.

Tidd had offers from Navy, Air Force amongst other schools – and there was interest shown by Cincinnati, Indiana, Minnesota and Purdue.

Tidd made his commitment to Vandy just over a month after receiving his offer.

 

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