Football Coaches Speak

This is an interesting list of quotes from ACC football quotes from the ACC Kickoff meetings.
Check how many coaches make negative comments about expansion. A little late now, boys.
The coach that made the strangest comments is Ralph Friedgen. He indirectly (directly?) blamed Myles Brand for losing players to other schools for academic reasons. Hey Fridge, the NCAA didn’t keep them out of Maryland, your admissions department did! I liked this quote too, “If I’m graduating them, what difference does it make if he made a ‘D’ in Chemistry.” There’s the attitude coach! Who cares if they actually learn anything – just pass them along. A diploma’s a diploma, right?

Greatest Early Retirements

With Ricky Williams’ surprising retirement this week, Page 2 has produced their list of the greatest early retirements. It’s actually a pretty good list, especially for Page 2, which seems to screw these sorts of thing up usually.
I didn’t remember that Borg was only 26 when he retired. That’s incredible. He seemed so much older to me, but I guess I was just a kid. I play tennis with big, looping, topspin forehands and two-handed backhands because of him.

Scooter Sherrill’s Story

This is an interesting, if not too long, look at Scooter Sherrill, both before and after his NC State career. It’s easy to forget how hyped he was coming in to State. He never really had the impact everyone thought he would, although he was a solid player.
Scooter sounds more than a bit disappointed in how his career went and implies that things didn’t go as promised during recruiting. He does say that if he had to do it all over again, he’d “probably still come to NC State.”
It’s interesting. Herb Sendek and State seemed to have turned the corner, but lots of players come out of that program unhappy. Many transfer, and some, like Sherrill and Josh Powell, leave without glowing reviews. You have to think that these stories hurt recruiting. So far, Herb has overcome it. I wonder how long that will continue?

New Arena At UVA

The new John Paul Jones Arena (adjacent to the Jimmy Page Parking Lot and Robert Plant Parkway) at Virginia sounds like it will be a very cool place to see a basketball game. It will be everything that University Hall is not – big, loud and intimidating. They’ve designed it so that the seats are very close to the floor. As you might expect, they used Cameron Indoor Stadium as a model.
You can see artist renditions here.
The arena is scheduled to be finished in about two years. I wonder who the coach will be then?

Good Crop Of QBs

Even with the graduations of stars Philip Rivers and Matt Schaub (as well as Maryland’s Scott McBrien), the ACC is loaded with good QBs this year. Chris Rix of FSU and Brock Berlin of Miami will get the most national publicity, but Clemson’s Charlie Whithurst is probably the best in the league. Darian Durant of UNC might be the next best, but his team probably won’t be good enough for anyone to notice.

Friendly Rivals

This Andy Katz article has a bunch of juicy nuggets. It’s about how the three Wake Forest and two UNC players are getting along while trying out for the national junior team.
Evidently, just before Katz published it, Rashad McCants was cut from the team. A pretty surprising cut, don’t you think? Justin Gray is still on the team and they play the same position, but McCants does it better. I can’t imagine that he’d be cut for any reason other than his attitude. I guess all those fluff pieces about how he’d “figured it out” were just that, fluff.
One quote I liked in there was by Gray about how funny it is that the Deacons were getting along so well with the Tar Heels. “It would be tougher if there was a Duke guy,” Gray said. Hmm, I guess that’s even more proof that Duke is the king of the conference now. They’re now the team people hate, not Carolina. Wonder if that’ll change soon?
OK, now for the biggie. For this one, I’ll just pull straight from the article:

McCants has been running the wing next to Paul plenty, too.
“He’s the best point guard I’ve played with by far, by far,” McCants said.
Better than North Carolina’s Raymond Felton?
“He’s a better point guard,” McCants said. “Raymond is more talented. But taking nothing away from Ray, Chris Paul is really talented, too.”

Wow. Wow! You play in the backcourt with Raymond Felton and yet you say that another player, a rival player no less, is a better point guard? Wow! Does McCants have any idea how to get along with others? I can’t imagine that sentiment is going over well in Chapel Hill.
Wow.

High Schoolers To NBA: Good

Yoni at College Basketball has a guest columnist on his site with an interesting article on why high schoolers skipping college is good for the NBA. You may have heard about this same theory a few months back with Michael McCann first published his article. It got a lot of play in newspapers around the country.
I had planned on writing a longish piece about this entry, but I may not get a chance. Basically, I agree with a lot of what he said. He makes some very interesting and unique points. I dont’ agree with all of his data though, or more accurately, his interpretation of the data. Hopefully I’ll find some time to give it a good review.