September 24, 2008
• Going to what kind of funeral? Make sure the boss and/or kids are out of earshot, turn the sound up and listen around 1:04 for Alabama strength and conditioning coach Scott Cochran's assessment Georgia's "blackout" for the Tide's visit on Saturday -- it's uncharacteristically quiet for a very loud man, so much so that Tide Sports originally posted the otherwise innocuous practice clip unedited, yet still not safe for wherever you happen to be listening:
The best thing about this is Cochran following up his meaningless smack by screaming, "You heard it! Keep that low now, keep that low!" Because the best empty swagger is always whispered within full view and earshot of independent cameramen. See, this is why Mark Richt keeps his practices closed.
• Reform, Ferentz. Reform. The sexual abuse cover-up that broke this summer was the tipping point on a long, long list of Iowa misdeeds -- Dezman Moses' public intoxication Sunday makes an incredible 19 Hawkeyes arrested since the start of the 2006 season -- and set the wheels of reform to grindin'. Over the weekend the university hired former DB Chigozie Ejiasi to play nanny, aka "director of player development," to keep incoming players out of the blotter. Tuesday, heads were rolling in preparation for president Sally Mason's meeting Thursday with the Board of Regents.
The board president wouldn't tell the Associated Press whether Mason could still be fired herself (I can name at least a couple of Iowans who'd be totally fine with that), and there's no indication from the outside whether the canned underlings, attorney Phillip Jones and vice president of something or other Marcus Mills, are just heads to deliver the regents on a platter. Those two were singled out in an independent report into the university's botched response to the sexual abuse charges against players Abe Satterfield and Cedric Everson, who go to trial in November, but Mills said Tuesday that Mason was "absolutely" aware of how the investigation was going forward. So despite the effort, she's not out of the woods yet.
• Beanie's back. Jim Tressel is calling Chris Wells 'probable' for Minnesota, and not a moment too soon for Ohio State, which needs an insurance policy to ease Terrelle Pryor's learning curve heading into the Big Ten schedule. The rest of the Buckeyes' season could hinge on the trip to Wisconsin next week, Pryor's first road start, and the Gophers are a perfect warm-up to develop some chemistry for the "second season" in-conference.
Quickly ... Dismissed Virginia quarterback Peter Lalich has been to Oregon State this week and will be a Beaver. . . . Chris Todd wants to play better after Auburn's loss to LSU. Big of him. . . . There's a whole spate of articles about Florida's "conservatism," all of them boiling down to "hey, a win is a win." . . . Gator defensive end Jermaine Cunningham is on crutches but still likely to play against Ole Miss. . . . Tennessee players and the big boss himself are fuming over criticism of Phil Fulmer. . . . Colorado receiver Kendrick Celestine is leaving the team. . . . Bo Pelini says Tom Osborne's input is welcome. That's nice of him. . . . USC promises to take Oregon State seriously. How dutiful, especially since USC lost on its last trip to Corvallis. . . . Also for USC, Brian Cushing's status is in question for Thursday, and unsung Garrett Green has passed heralded Aaron Corp and Mitch Mustain as the Trojans' No. 2 quarterback. . . . And will Pat McAfee ever recover from missing an overtime field goal against Colorado? Probably, but the jury's still out -- take his shoelaces away, just in case.
- - -
Photo of Beanie Wells via Getty Images.