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1.20.2008

News of the day, 1/20

Hey everyone. It's been a pretty lazy Sunday for me. Still, there are some topics to discuss. Let's get to business.

Big up to you all for taking a new average of 72 seconds to peruse the HOTTEST Auburn blog on the 'net.

The football team landed another commitment today, its 24th of the year, when Enterpise TE Ken Adams announced plans to sign with the Tigers. Auburn was the only major-school player to offer Adams a scholarship. That's either a shrewd diamond-in-the-rough pick (i.e. Dontarrious Thomas) or a what-were-they-thinking deal (i.e. Oscar Gonzalez). Either way, Tommy Tuberville now has 24 players committed or signed.

The men's basketball team beat Ole Miss 70-67 on Saturday night. This already has been a hot topic among the 1/18 comments. I don't have much to add aside from admitting that I was a little too harsh on DeWayne Reed. He comes and goes during a game, but he's good when he's going. He was critical on Saturday. If they had Barber and Dollard, that would be a pretty good team. Considering the dropoff with UK and Florida this season, Auburn might have had a chance to slide into the NCAAs.

The women lost at Kentucky today by seven points. F DeWanna Bonner had an off game and, well, that's how it goes. She's the only go-to player on the team right now, though I think G/F Sherrell Hobbs deserves credit for being an outstanding complementary player. She's the perfect Scottie Pippen. The problem is that Bonner is more Toni Kukoc than Michael Jordan.

This has nothing to do with Auburn, yet I'm intrigued that the Associated Press already has written an obit for Britney Spears. It's common for news organizations to write stories ahead of time for famous people who may be nearing the end of their lives. Our favorite 26-year-old star may or may not be in that boat, though I don't need Dr. Phil telling me she's troubled. She's just being a spoiled multi-millionaire who spent her adolescence getting everything she wanted and now doesn't know how to quench that thirst. One thing is for sure: She's one energetic hussy.

As many of you know, I'm a big fan of 80s music. I've been spending too much time lately perusing YouTube for music videos from the old days and, to my surprise, almost every video I seek is posted. I can't imagine growing up now days. Back in '83, I had to wait for MTV to play my favorite videos. No computer. No internet.

Anyway, here's one for you. Duran Duran's "Union of The Snake," a swell song accompanied by a non-sensical video:



Questions? Comments? You can email me at: jgtate@gannett.com OR you can post a comment directly to the blog. Click the "comments" link directly below.

50 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I always thought Duran Duran was overrated at the time. Now that I can go back and just listen to their music without these terrible videos I can see why they were so highly thought of. However I'd still say The Cure were better.

Nice job by the AP of getting such a morbid story leaked. I suppose I could understand the idea of having a story prepared ahead of time, but why the need to go blab about it I don't. Just seems like they wanted to create more news cycles dealing with the fall from grace of Miss Spears. Not to mention capitalizing on the TMZ/tabloid journalism craze. Honestly I don't understand what the draw to these type of stories is. I could care less who was at what club with whom (Plus for fantasy purposes why would I want to know what loser my celeb crush is fawning over).

Oh and Jay are any of these recruits likely to not make the grade? Because we seem to have a full class, but are trying to bring in a few more high profile guys. Personally i hope we could get a few of the undecided defensive guys especially LBs and DBs.

6:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought Duran Duran was very good even then. Much better than a lot of the hot bands back then. They had moxy, like INXS. INXS was some good sh*t.

6:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Adams and McCalebb are sign and place.

6:18 PM  
Anonymous ron mexico said...

Auburnsports.com is reporting that auburn is offering a long snapper. This has got to be a joke. Seriously either this kid or the coaching staff is playing a practical joke.

6:23 PM  
Anonymous ron mexico said...

I know a long snapper is a necessity but i am fairly certain you can teach a monkey to long snap.

6:25 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm trying to figure out the reasoning behind the long snapper offer. Does it creat a scapegoat for the less than stellar recruiting ranking? Like it or not, those stars bring pub to a program. I'm not big on them. I believe in the Courtney Taylors of the world.

Just sayin...

6:31 PM  
Anonymous ron mexico said...

I agree i'm all for the sleeper guys. I personally think they work harder and more coachable when they get to college because they have not reached superstar status in high school (e.g. Julio Jones). I am even all for giving kickers and punters scholarships. They have an enormous effect on the outcome of a game. But to give away scholarship to a long snapper blows my mind. I mean what's next scholarships to holders.

7:10 PM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

As for the long snapper, I'll have to ask the head coach about that during our next conversation.

I think the kid's lineage has something to do with that offer. His dad was some NFL guy I've heard of ... which is saying something considering how little I know about the NFL.

With that said, I disagree with the assessment that even a monkey could snap. It takes a special guy to handle that job. Not sure I'd dedicate a scholarship to someone like that, but it's NOT an easy gig by any means.

7:53 PM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

I forgot about the grades question.

I've been told that McCalebb has basically no chance of qualifying. Ken Adams may or may not qualify. Damion Allen, obviously, isn't a kid that will be there this summer.

7:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the recruiting info Jay. Have you noticed the storm brewing in Morgantown over the past few weeks? They are slinging mud so hard you would think the two sides were running for political office. It makes Auburn's dysfunctional athletics dept. seem normal by comparison. The governor getting involved seems a bit odd to me especially at such an early stage of this dispute. I would say this bodes well for our game, but seeing as there are still 9 months to go they have plenty of time to shore this up.

9:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There's not much recruiting info here, guys. You have to subscribe to Rivals to get what you want. But don't get too crazy with it. You can only win on the field.

9:54 PM  
Anonymous ron mexico said...

Obviously I understand a long snapper is important. They can very easily lose the game for you. (florida '06 and florida '01) And when they snap the ball well they go unnoticed, but i think a walk on could be taught how to snap. I also saw the part about his dad being in the NFL. Why would a kid's lineage warrant an offer? I mean I understand offering off of potential but offering off of pedigree is a reach in my opinion.

10:04 PM  
Anonymous ron mexico said...

actually i forgot florida '06 the punter just dropped the ball

10:10 PM  
Anonymous auburnmath101 said...

This is the answer to the "monkey" comment.

No you cannot teach anybody to do it. Which is why every team only has three or four who can, and only one who is really good at it. It's basically like throwing a 15 yd dump pass upside down and trying not to think about the nose guard who is getting ready to try and knock your helmet through your rear end hole.

10:36 PM  
Anonymous Hoopie said...

Auburnmath, Re: long-snapping


EXACTLY!!!

7:47 AM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

I do not claim to be a clearinghouse for recruiting information. I try to wade through the rhetoric and give you all a useful overview of the situation.

9:13 AM  
Anonymous jhag said...

Boubacar Sylla, THE 7-1 265 commit from Africa, where is he?

12:07 PM  
Blogger A. D. Payne said...

I think he is hurt like everyone else.

12:14 PM  
Anonymous Ron Mexico said...

All i'm saying about the long snapper is that Auburn hasn't offered a person a scholarship to just long snap and it hasn't seemed to be a problem so why start offering to long snappers now. Please argue with that.

2:51 PM  
Anonymous Calvin said...

Hey jhag, Paris, France is in Africa now?

3:00 PM  
Anonymous auburnmath101 said...

No, I don't want to argue with that.

3:15 PM  
Anonymous auburnmath101 said...

Except to ask you, how do you know that AU has never had a long snapper on scholarship?

3:16 PM  
Anonymous jhag said...

Yeah Calvin thanks for the sarcasim, your right though it is France he appears to be from Africa though.

3:21 PM  
Anonymous auburnmath101 said...

Jhag ... while he may appear to be from Africa ... (what?) ... He is in fact from Paris, France. There are black people living in France. Go figure.

3:29 PM  
Anonymous Ron Mexico said...

I didn't say that. I said offer someone to just long snap. If a scolarship player is good at long snapping so be it, but Auburn should not recruit someone solely based on thier long snapping skill. Once again please argue.

3:32 PM  
Anonymous auburnmath101 said...

Might he also be pretty good in the shotgun? i.e. spread offense? getting the ball to the QB would be key, I would think?

3:34 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Somebody's got to get a real recruiter into the Mobile area. James Willis has blown each and every opportunity there. Alab ama did not want Hunt. They wanted everybody else and they got them...paying or not. This is supposed to be AU fertile ground.

I believe you need to have a very savvy salesperson to compete with the Saban/Baumhower system. Everybody knows down here. Who do you call?

3:36 PM  
Anonymous Ron Mexico said...

I think the blocking part is more important. If Auburn ever offers someone for thier ability to shotgun snap I will cancel my season tickets.

3:41 PM  
Anonymous Ron Mexico said...

I can't believe you are making me be the guy to argue with you it's borderline embarassing.

3:42 PM  
Anonymous Ron Mexico said...

As far as the Mobile comment I live there too. I don't think that James Willis is a bad recruiter (which he might be, i have no idea) but i think it is bad timing being Saban's first full year recruiting. He's offering playing time and trying to get his guys in there. It just happens to be this is the most talent this city has probably ever had.

3:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Last year and the year before were as good or better. Look, when Julio Jones drives around in a $44K vehicle and his mom is a maid and his uncle is a yard man that tells you plenty. There's a reason he's so quite and it's not just shyness.

3:52 PM  
Anonymous buck said...

Michael Lindsey was a long snapper at AU for five years in the early Tuberville days. He was on scholarship the entire period.

3:53 PM  
Anonymous ron mexico said...

I vaguely remember michael lindsey, and I am fairly confident he was recruited to be an offensive lineman but turned out to be a tight end/longsnapper.

4:19 PM  
Anonymous ron mexico said...

I have to disagree with last year or the year before being better talent in Mobile.

Last year: Michael McNeil, Brandon Gibson, Ryan Williams, Phelon Jones and Nick Fairly.

This year: Julio jones, Burton Scott, Mark Barron, Glen Harbin, Destin Hood, and etc.

I'm going with this year. It just sucks none of those are going to Auburn.

4:41 PM  
Blogger Jay G. Tate said...

From what I have heard, James Willis is one of Auburn's best recruiters. I'd say it's him, Eddie Gran and Steve Ensminger. So pulling Willis out of Mobile probably won't help matters.

With that said, I mean, who's to say Auburn has "lost" Mobile? Alabama has done quite well down there this season, obviously, but that doesn't necessarily mean it will continue.

Auburn hasn't been a great magazine-style recruiting team since Tuberville has been there. They get a few high-profile kids -- ie Carnell and Marcus McNeill and Obomanu -- but the core of Tuberville's program often is built with 2- and 3-star kids.

That's what they're getting this year. Why the panic?

4:47 PM  
Anonymous Ron Mexico said...

Jay,

I got a question that pertains to your comment. Who do you think are Auburn's most valuable position coaches? Here's what i think. (keep in mind i have only been to a few scrimages never a real practice and i probably don't have clue what i'm talking about)

1. Hugh Nall - seems to develop his players and a decent recruiter.

2. Eddie Gran - Auburn usually has good special teams and he hooks us up in florida which can't be very convenient.

3. James Willis - seems to be a good recruiter and the players like him

4. Don Dunn - Auburn rarely has weak interior D-lineman

5. Ensminger - I hear his name a lot in recruiting but he coaches/did coach tight ends, doesn't seem very crucial.

6. Terry Price - does well in the birmingham area for the most part but i have never heard the guy talk or get mentioned a whole lot.

7. Greg Knox - I thought Obamanu and co. could've been much better.

5:18 PM  
Anonymous auburnmath101 said...

Thanks to Buck ...

I sure hope we don't recruit a center based on his ability to play the game, which includes being able to snap the ball well, because then RM will quit going to the games!

C'mon man ... lighten up a little. Nobody is arguing with you. I am only trying to offer reasons why they may be interested in offering a scholarship to a long snapper. I am sure they have a pretty good reason. WE don't know what it is. However, I trust the AU staff to make good decisions, which they have been doing without our help for quite some time now.

I am sorry that I have embarrassed you by insulting your immeasurable intelligence and overall football savvy.

7:03 PM  
Blogger A. D. Payne said...

The $64,000 dollar question - Does Auburn really want Julio Jones? I don't know. Have they maybe cooled off on Enrique a little? It's possible.

Something to think about.

7:06 PM  
Anonymous mr anonymous said...

I wouldn't say Auburn lives with 2 and 3 star recruits. That just hasn't been the case since Auburn sort of crossed over into elite territory. This is considered a down year for recruiting, here 2 weeks before signing day. Auburn's averaging a little over 3.5 stars per recruit.

It's difficult to imagine how they come to these rankings in all reality. Ken Adams, a 2 star, dominated a near 5 star Dee Finley this year head to head. I mean total domination. Dee's as high a 4 star ranking as you can get before being called a 5. And, I don't see what skills put Dee right there. I don't see what puts Burton Scott where he is when Mark Barron's a much better football player

With Harry Adams, do you think he would be a 4 had Saban been able to take him from Dillard like he tried? I mean, he's the fastest player in America coming out of high school according to all publications. Don't you know Tim Watts and crew had their political hats on that week that Saban nearly turned the tide for Bama's chances with Adams?

8:29 PM  
Anonymous AU archidork said...

Can anyone tell me whether or not rivals.com has ever given a clear and specific explanation of how they go about the "art" of ranking highschool recruits. For the life of me, I cannot imagine a definitive process. There are just too many variables. Granted, some players have performed better than others. But we are talking about young men who are in the middle stages of development. I tend to think that the difference between a five star and a one star is exactly four stars, which doesn't really mean very much to me. Know what I mean?

8:36 PM  
Anonymous Ron Mexico said...

Auburnmath,

Snapping a football is about the 63rd hardest thing about the game of football. I played center in high school it's not hard. And Auburn should not give scholarships to people solely for thier long snapping skills. I am not talking about this anymore.

But i agree with the two posts about the rivals rating system. I think they could definately come up with something better.

8:55 PM  
Anonymous Mr Anonymous said...

You're right. There are SO many variables. It's ridiculous. I know a guy who scouts and writes for Rivals...for bamaonline.com. He's a Bama fan for life, not an alum. His opinion is pretty highly regarded. And to be honest with you, I am not all too impressed with his assessments.

This guy is not an athlete in any shape or form. I'm not saying you have to be. But if you are an athlete, even one where a game's passed you by, I believe you have a much better feel for what you're seeing on the field. This is where the "so many variables" part is so underplayed.

Let's look at an Auburn player- Montez Billings. He was highly regarded coming out of high school. Toward the end of the recruiting process his senior year, this very same Bama scout thought they should move their interests elsewhere because Montez "couldn't catch a cold". He was fast and rangy, but he couldn't catch.

Montez didn't drop a pass this year and got punished for that many, many times. He really got pounded. That skinny frame is very strong and Yox is just getting started on him. But, most importantly, he's got hands made of glue!

I laugh at the stuff I hear sometimes about who's who and what they can do.

9:18 PM  
Anonymous Ron Mexico said...

Yeah i take the rivals writers with a grain of salt. They want you to subscribe so they are going to sugar coat it. Beat writers (Jay, Evan woodberry, gentry estes and etc.) seem to be a little more objective which i like. If something sucks I want to hear it sucks. I once thought the radio station down here (WNSP) was pretty objective but it is apparently ruled by the crimson fist. But that has been well covered material on this blog.

9:31 PM  
Anonymous Mr Anonymous said...

Yea, WNSP is a goner. And it's a shame. I used to enjoy Sports Drive a little. If you don't know much about sports at least be entertaining (Finebaum). These WNSP guys strike out in both categories.

9:37 PM  
Anonymous auburnmath101 said...

I didn't know I made any comments about rivals.com, but thanks anyway.

About playing center ... whatever dude. I am through talking about it too.

But, since we are talking about rivals, I think it's all about money. There is a big difference between highschool and college. Who can tell?

10:04 PM  
Anonymous auburnmath101 said...

I am not talking about snapping. But I am curious, what are the first 62 hardest things?

10:05 PM  
Anonymous Phislamabama said...

I agree with Ron M. WNSP has had a pro bama agenda and now that Neal M. was fired due to his in your face opinions, I don't give them a time or day!

8:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

aumath101 and ronmexico,

You both are correct in my opinion so leave it alone. RM, I agree that you cant recruit a kid simply because he can snap the football. There are much more important things than that. And 101, I agree that they are recruiting him for some reason, and until that reason becomes clear (or until they screw it up) I have to trust their judgement.

8:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In my opinion there is SOME validity to recruiting, but not much. Obviously a class will have a better chance at success if it is mostly 4 and 5 star kids. But there is enough evidence that show 1 and 2 stars can be successful as well, and 4/5 stars can be a bust.

You just cant let one commit (or de-commit) get you up or down. One player will not make or break a football team or a recruiting class.

Anon 8:42

8:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jay

what do you know about Boubacar Sylla's status? I thought hed be back by now

11:24 AM  

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