These are busy times in Bulldog Nation, and time is as short as news is plentiful. In addition to major achievements unrelated to sports, the following items of note caught my eye, and ought to have caught yours, as well:
- Mark Fox recently landed 6’10" center John Cannon, and you have to be impressed with that, right? I mean, Cannon decided to play his college basketball for Georgia, rather than for North Carolina or Northwestern, so this is a big deal, isn’t it? Well, maybe not; the Tar Heels offered him only preferred walk-on status---read: no athletic scholarship---and the Wildcats are the definitive major-conference program for NCAA Tournament futility. For his part, Paul Westerdawg is skeptical about signing a kid whose offer list included High Point---yes, that High Point---but, in the meantime, the increasingly odd Kevin Ware saga also has me wondering whether we should want him in Athens, either. While I believe he’s our guy, I’m starting to question how well Coach Fox is seizing his moment.
- How good a job do Mark Richt and his staff do when it comes to developing NFL talent? I’d say they’re about par for the course, but, as Team Speed Kills notes, there are statistical measures by which Georgia leads the SEC in the development of gridiron talent. Ere you jump for joy at that report, though, heed the words of caution offered by Senator Blutarsky, and ask yourself if the Bulldogs do a better job of helping marginal players get chosen in the later rounds than they do of getting elite talent ready for the first round.
- Why didn’t the SEC expand last summer? Because improvement was almost impossible for the conference. The best-case scenario for the league would be adding Clemson in the East and Texas A&M in the West, but, believe it or not, the Country Gentlemen bring more to the table than the Aggies. In any case, both programs are natural fits who maintain geographic balance, preserve the culture of the conference, and strengthen the middle of the SEC, much as the additions of Arkansas and South Carolina did two decades ago. When expansion becomes a necessity rather than a luxury, as it inevitably will, Clemson and Texas A&M are the way to go, particularly once the Jungaleers boost their budgetary bottom line.
- Last but by no means least, please note the new addition to the sidebar enabling you to donate to relief efforts in the wake of the devastating storms to have blown through our sister state to the west last week. Your contributions are appreciated.
That ought to give you enough to deliberate and discuss, so have at it in the comments below, and . . . hey! Let’s be careful out there.