published Wednesday, April 20th, 2011

5 at 10: NFL draft images, the Yogi machine and a bad Knight

Before we get going, remember we're still looking for some Friday mailbag questions.

Here we go...

Big ninth lifts Atlanta

The 5-at-10 loved

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    Atlanta Braves left fielder Eric Hinske, right, is greeted at the dugout entrance by Martin Prado after hitting a hitting a solo home run in the fourth inning of a baseball game against the Florida Marlins in Atlanta, Saturday, Aug. 28, 2010. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Eric Hinske's stat line last night. He got two at-bats as a pinch-hitter when the Braves batted around in an eight-run ninth inning that capped a 10-1 win over the Dodgers.

Hinske homered in his first trip and singled in his second. All told, he played half of an inning and went 2-for-2 with three RBIs.

Maybe that big final inning will jump start a hot streak. Last year it was Brooks Conrad's late-game, off-the-bench heroics that rolled into a torrid May. We'll see.

Two other things of note:

— Starting pitcher Brandon Beachy was dealing. He went six scoreless innings and struck out seven.

— There was a Dan Uggla sighting. His three-run homer may have appeared cosmetic in stretching the lead from 5-1 to 8-1, but anything to get the team's primary right-handed power bat going would be a good thing.

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    Alabama wide receiver Julio Jones. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

Some NFL draft questions

The 5-at-10 loves the draft. You know this.

One of the great things about the draft is trying to slot which teams are focusing on which players and making your evaluations from there.

We have kicked around some of the post-first-round steals and some of the possible late-round steals that for whatever reason have fallen down the draft boards.

Today, let's kick around the players that could be first-round steals. Think about the 2007 draft, which had a loaded first round.

Adrian Peterson started to fall, and even though the Vikings didn't have a big need at running back, they landed a possible Hall of Famer with the seventh pick. In the next couple of hours, the 49ers landed Patrick Willis with the 11th pick, the Jets got Darrelle Revis at No. 14 and the Chiefs got Dwayne Bowe at No. 23. All of these have turned into good-to-great players. If that draft class was reshuffled, each would be top-10 picks.

Plus, that draft also is comparable to this year's first round because of the name that looms at the top of each. In 2007, JaMarcus Russell was the No. 1 overall pick. (And somewhere our man Al Davis just passed out; in fact, the words "JaMarcus Russell" would arguably have the same effect on Al that someone saying "Britney Spears" to K. Federline, right? They'd each make that wincing face followed by that, "Really? We have to go there?" look.)

Cam Newton — the name being tossed about at the top of this draft for his out-of-this-world gifts and potential — has also drawn some less-than-stellar reviews in other areas.

But if Newton does go first overall, that means there are some potential first-round steals — just like there was in 2007.

The phrase "first-round steals" may sound strange, we know, but if a team can get a player like Da'Quan Bowers, who was listed as the No. 1 overall talent three months ago, with the 12th pick, then that would be a steal.

There are three-to-five legit, almost sure-fire stars in this draft. Patrick Peterson, Von Miller, A.J. Green, Marcel Dareus and Julio Jones seem to be the safest early picks. Each has the size, at least one plus-plus skill and very few knocks.

Here are five guys that may slide that if your team can land in middle of the first round, well, job well done:

— Da'Quan Bowers, defensive end, Clemson

— Julio Jones, receiver, Alabama

— Nick Fairley, defensive tackle, Auburn

— Tyron Smith, tackle, USC

— Robert Quinn, North Carolina

Some NBA playoff answers

Did you see the stat that before last night, the Mavs were 2-18 in playoff games in which referee Joey Crawford worked? That's a crazy stat.

In fact, let's put that data in our new Yogi Berra-Machine of Analysis (For those of you wondering the (Yogi Berra-Machine of Analysis, or the YBMA, is a tricked-out shoe box here at the 5-at-10 compound that when you place a stat in it, the box spits out a Yogi-type nugget of wisdom).

About the Mavs going 2-18 before Tuesday with Joey C. working, the YBMA said: "Sometimes the appearance of impropriety just doesn't look right." There you go.

Here are a couple of other YMBA observations from last night's games:

On the Knicks getting 42 from Carmelo and still losing to playoff-savvy Boston by three: "Experience is a good thing that is all-too-often wasted on the old." (Side note: Seriously, the Celtics had to pull out all the stops to claim two narrow wins at home over a Knicks team that after Carmelo Anthony, A'mare Stoudemire (who missed the second half Tuesday) and Chauncey Billups (who did not play Tuesday) looks more like a junior-college all-star team? The Celts better make a run now, because Father Time is making his way toward Boston.)

On Atlanta scoring all of 82 points on Tuesday: "Hey, it's the Hawks."

On Lamar Odum becoming the first Laker to ever win the league's top sixth-man award: "Of course he's comfortable playing a lesser role, and letting quasi-talented folks steal the spotlight, he married a Kardashian."

Knight in less-than-shining light

ESPN analyst

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    Texas Tech coach Bobby Knight signals to his team in the game against Iowa State during the second round of the Big 12 tournament Friday, March 11, 2005, at Kemper Arena in Kansas City, Mo. Knight's Red Raiders won 64-56 to advance to the semifinal round. (AP Photo/Ed Zurga)

Bobby Knight's careless claim about former UK basketball players not attending classes was pushed under the rug by the almighty Worldwide Leader.

Knight said at a banquet in Indiana: "Kentucky the year before last started five players in the NCAA tournament games that had not been to class that semester. That's that one-and-done philosophy."

His apology sounded so politically sidestepping it may have been written on Capital Hill: "My overall point is that 'one and dones' are not healthy for college basketball. I should not have made it personal to Kentucky and its players, and I apologize."

It did not matter that his facts were wrong (Darius Miller, who was one of the starters in the game Knight was referring to, returned to UK) or that his assumptions were unfounded (UK AD Mitch Barnhardt said the five players that left to be first-round picks were in good academic standing after spring semester).

It also doesn't matter that he was using the wrong draft class as an example — because in truth, if you want to call-out the one-and-done guys, look around at the people that leave early and go undrafted. The kids that leave early and get guaranteed seven-figure-plus NBA deals should go. Knight may not like it and Johnny College Hoops Fan may not like it for what it has done to the college game, but if a kid can get set for life, he has to go. It's just that simple.

Plus, it feels like Knight, who not two years ago insinuated that UK coach John Calipari was all that was wrong with the game, has it out for the Wildcats. That could make it awkward if Knight's in position to offer his analysis on UK, huh? Seems like ESPN just wants this go away as soon as possible.

Think back a couple of years ago when a former UT football coach whose name sounded a lot like Stain Miffin got all crazy in front of a banquet hall. It lead ESPN for three days, and they may have led an "Outside the Lines: Special Report" with the footage.

As always, please remember that the E in ESPN stands for "entertainment."

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    University of Pennsylvania research specialist Jamie Gewirtz, left, waits for a robot to throw him a ball at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, Monday April 18, 2011. (AP Photo/The Inquirer, Ron Tarver)

This and that

— If four stud starting pitchers wasn't enough for the Phillies, now they're goin all scientific on everyone. PhillieBot, a one-armed, three-wheeled robot, is scheduled to throw out the first pitch today PhillieBot's creators started with a Segway added a robotic arm powered by a pneumatic cynlinder, that can deliver a burst of compressed air to power the pitch. The robot is also equipped with a brain that can change pitch trajectory and speed. Here's betting that the PhillieBot is also more fun in the clubhouse that sour-faced Roy Halladay.

— The 10th anniversary of 9/11 will be on a Sunday this year, and the NFL has the New York Giants playing at Washington and the New York Jets playing at home against Dallas. The schedule was release Tuesday night, provided the NFL's labor issues are worked out before the season. Jets coach Rex Ryan said: That stadium is going to be full of emotion, not only the people from the area but in the entire country. The fact that it's the 10th anniversary of 9/11, that's where the focus should be, not me playing against my brother (who coaches for the Cowboys). It should be an emotional day — whether there's football or not.

Until tomorrow.

about Jay Greeson...

Jay was named the Sports Editor of the Times Free Press in 2003 and started with the newspaper in May 2002 as the Deputy Sports Editor. He was born and raised in Smyrna, Ga., and graduated from Auburn University before starting his newspaper career in 1997 with the Newnan (Ga.) Times Herald. Stops in Clayton and Henry counties in Georgia and two years as the Sports Editor of the Marietta (Ga.) Daily Journal preceded Jay’s ...

Comments do not represent the opinions of the Chattanooga Times Free Press, nor does it review every comment. Profanities, slurs and libelous remarks are prohibited. For more information you can view our Terms & Conditions and/or Ethics policy.
Eustice_Chase said...

If I am picking number one this year in the draft, Im taking Peterson...after all wasnt Charles Woodson a first Rounder some years ago? Look how that has turned out...a shutdown corner is hard to find...Pay the man...he will start on day one, regardless if day one is September or November(when Labor deals are settled)

Rex Ryan...please tune in to the 5@10 Family Based Intertub Web Thingy...No One cares that you are coaching against your one cares that you r coaching against any other coach...I have yet to see you buckle up your chin strap and make a tackle....

Carmelo..42 points 17 rebs...that sounds like the offspring of Michael Jordan and Dennis Rodman with that stat line...insert Amare and/or Billups..Knicks win by Im raising my glass in hopes that either Mr.Big Shot or Mr. Back Spasms is ready to play on Firday....

April 20, 2011 at 10:22 a.m.
chas9 said...

5-at-10--Thanks for exposing the stuffed sweater who thinks HE'S the Almighty Worldwide Leader. He is Wide, after all. You point out that Miller returned, so he was in good standing. Of the other starters on the 2010 team, Wall is reported to have kept an honor roll GPA, Cousins tweeted that he attended spring classes and kept up his GPA, and Patterson graduated in three years. UK AD Mitch Barnhart says all the starters finished the spring term in good academic standing. Maybe the Bobster is mad that Texas Tech fired his loser son (16-42 Big 12 record) and hired a guy who couldn't cut it at Kentucky (Billy G). If ESPN wants an entertaining common tater who gets his facts wrong, why not replace Knight with the even wider Round Mound of Rebound?

April 20, 2011 at 11:20 a.m.
Eustice_Chase said...

Knights comments werent spot on but im pretty sure if you put his apology and comments in the YBMA it would come out something like " its not always the facts that are right but its the story that gets the point across" and John Wall deserved star roll GPA for his rendition of "the dougie" i give it an A+ !!!

Oh Thank goodness...Mrs.EC needs a new Ed Hardy Bikini... hey do you sell Kemba Walker Bobble heads for my man OsoGrande??

April 20, 2011 at 11:36 a.m.
jgreeson said...

EC —

Strong start from you my man. Agree 100-percent of Peterson. The guy's going to be a Hall of Famer if he stays healthy.

Simply great line about Mr. Big Shot and Mr. Back Spasm for the Knicks. What happens if they sneak in the D-Howard sweepstakes and/or the Chris Paul bonanza that are on the horizon. Carmelo has legit skills.

We put Knight's comments into the YMBA and, while it works better with numbers, it did spit out, "I'm crotchety." So maybe it does work for quotes, too. There you go. P.S. John Wall's dance was top-flight, and if we can find a spam-site that deals Kemba bobbleheads (in addition to $32 Jordan shoes) well we'll make that happen. SIde note: Does the phrase "accept the paypal" above feel like a merging between technology and religion that's fringing on the uncomfortable?

Chas9 —

I'm surprised it's taken Knight this long to step on his own tongue. And think what the reaction would have been from Knight the Coach would have been if someone had called him out for say Isaiah leaving after his sophomore year? Holy Show-Me-Your-Game-Face Meltdowns he would have been on the war path. Guy's time has come and gone. Hopefully he'll use this as a chance to exit some-what gracefully and go be bitter out of the public eye.

— 5-at-10

April 20, 2011 at 11:54 a.m.
Eustice_Chase said...

if the Knicks can figure out a deal to trade Spike Lee, Willis Reeds HOF Career and about 46 players to be named later to get either CP3 or Super-Dwight...well that would be Collassal..."accepts the paypal" sounds like a phrase used in an alter call at your local Pentacostal Hinske the modern day Glenallan Hill? A full time pinch hitter??

Mrs.EC asked me to do the "Dougie" the other day, sadly Gary Blair's version is better than my own....

April 20, 2011 at 12:02 p.m.
bigbearzzz said...

nobody has was all a lie.....there's no such thing as Kemba "my hero" Walker Bobble Head Doll....but i did get a nice pair of Jordan's pretty cheap....Nothing really grabbed my attention today as i have been so busy as to not even sit down and be able to watch 5 minutes worth of sports related shows on the TV. Maybe i can get back into the swing of things once the season is over. Till then, keep keeping me informed Cinco/ helps fill that void...that dark cavern of despare left empty by the hopes of a false idol once gleemed possible from the very lips of....ok im done. Oh...AJ Green is going to rock in the long as he doesnt go to the Bengals or the Lions..which are obviously dream killing locations in the sports world.

April 20, 2011 at 12:03 p.m.
Eustice_Chase said...

AJ Green and Julio Jones are going to be a Defenive Coordinators nightmare...long strong and fast... Aj Green in Detriot would be great so he could play will former UGA Matthew Stafford...if Stafford doesnt find his way on IR for the rest of his $60 Million Career

April 20, 2011 at 12:15 p.m.
bigbearzzz said...

Oh i would LOOOOOOOOOOVE for AJ Green to hook back up with Matt!! and while ur at it, Detroit, would you also consider trading for this lil unknown back from Denver named Knowshon?! I would almost be persuaded to become a Lion's fan if that ever happened. i have to getting all flustered....

April 20, 2011 at 12:43 p.m.
ordinaryguy said...

Between you and Goforth the Knight bashing is laughable. Check his graduation rate and lack of NCAA problems and he is a role model compared to Cal.

April 20, 2011 at 12:44 p.m.
jgreeson said...

EC —

The Knicks have something brewing, and in truth, that's a good thing. MSG rockin' with a Knicks crowd is a fun setting. Like September baseball in the old Yankee Stadium. Just had a bigger feel.

Never been asked to try the "Dougie" or the "John Wall," but the 5-at-10 can dumb dance like nobody's business. (Think Alfonso Ribeiro on the Fresh Prince.)

Oso —

We're still working on the Kemba Bobblehead — never say never Oso.

Stafford with Calvin Johnson on one side and AJ Green on the other would be flat-nasty.

And while you're trying to assemble a UGA All-Star reunion tour in Detroit (The Detroit Bulldogs has a ring, huh?) that leads us to another summer topic: Current and all-time NFL teams from specific colleges.

OGuy —

Thanks for stopping by, we always have an open seat. Don't take this as taking Cal's side over Knight's. This is calling Knight out for what he did. Cal has more than his share of shortcomings, but so does Knight — who has always carried the tag of being a world-class bully.

It's tough to compare grad rates now and then — when all of one or two guys total declare early as opposed to one or two guys per team. Knight had a lot of success, but to hold him up as the patron saint of coaching virtue is short-sighted.

April 20, 2011 at 2:18 p.m.
Eustice_Chase said...

Sheesh, Classified ads sure arent cheap, Its about time Brandon Beachy got a win, the guy has some nasty stuff and has pitched some great games he just hasnt got the record to back it up...but if he pitches like he did last night, well he might be a stud in the for the 2B Formerly known as Dan uggla making an appearance last night, well thanks for coming by Dano...maybe you can stay longer this time...

April 20, 2011 at 2:42 p.m.
BIspy4 said...

How old are the Celtics? Shaq has fallen and can’t get up. That’s how old they are. Even Robert Parish looks young compared to these guys. Tommy Heinsohn and K.C. Jones could suit up and play a few minutes, giving the old guys a rest. The 5 at 10 knows BIspy4 turned his back on the NBA years ago (thanks to the Celtics hiring Rick Pitino also to some dude named Michael out of Wilmington, N.C.). So the BIspy4 caught all of five seconds of an NBA playoff game on his way from a Hooters Dream Girl competition on one channel to Swamp People on History Channel (don’t know what’s historic about that, but hey, MTV shows how many music videos these days too?). In those five seconds, BIspy4 saw Derrick Rose. And … him good. Him better than good. He real good. He’s Randy Watson good. And with that, my NBA playoff watching is done. If I want to see two minutes get dragged out into an hour and a half, I’ll watch “Titanic.” Which I also have not watched. What, does the boat not sink? Of course it sinks! End of story.

April 20, 2011 at 3:45 p.m.
jgreeson said...

EC —

You and the 5-at-10 are on the same page with Beachy and Uggla. Think both are going to be big-time Big-Timers, but would like to see it sooner rather than later.

BIspy4 —

Was just thinking, "Wonder what happened to BIspy" then you go and doe something like this and completely redeem yourself.

Randy Watson? Swamp People on the History Channel? Your Hennie Youngman "Titantic" routine?

Well played, sir. Very well played.

— 5-at-10

April 20, 2011 at 4:55 p.m.
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