published Wednesday, October 30th, 2013

5-at-10: Dobbs debut, Mocs' big moment, best Simpsons character

We have reached hump day — Mike, Mike, Mike, Mike, Mike. We're stoked for Halloween and we're still looking for that last-minute home run costume idea.

Gang, remember Friday's mailbag.

From the "Talks too much" studios, even the best have bad days.

Are you ready for your close-up Mr. Dobbs?

It's official. The UT fan base has been itching to see one of the freshmen quarterbacks, and with Justin Worley on the shelf indefinitely, Johnny Vols Fans will get a heaping dose of Josh Dobbs this week against Missouri.

Here's UT beat ace Downtown Patrick Brown's report.

Worley had surgery Tuesday on his thumb and will be out for the foreseeable future. Fellow freshmen Riley Ferguson and Nathan Peterman are also hobbled by injuries.

So that leaves Dobbs, the lanky freshman who is long on confidence and smarts and short on eye brows. The kid has talent and enough 'it' factor that he did not look overwhelmed when he made his college debut in the second half in Tuscaloosa against No. 1-ranked Alabama.

Granted, entering a game down 35-0 takes a lot of the pressure off — you enter a game down five TDs, it's not like one mistake is going to cost you the game — but Dobbs still looked comfortable in the moment. That's a good sign for sure.

Also a good sign is that Dobbs is athletic enough to be a running threat in the option.

That said, it would be wise to temper expectations. Sure, Dobbs could be a star in waiting and seize the moment from this point forward. But it's worth remembering that Dobbs could not wrest the starting job from Worley until Worley was injured. Whether you think Butch Jones is Vince Lombardi, Part Deux or Sam the Butcher, it's fair to assume Butch would have replaced Worley a while ago if anyone in practice looked markedly better.

———

Mocs questions

What should we expect fro UTC this weekend in Boone?

  • photo
    UTC junior running back Keon Williams holds a football in the Mocs locker room at McKenzie Arena. Williams has rushed 687 yards with five 100-yard games and nine rushing touchdowns this season.
    Photo by Doug Strickland.
    enlarge photo

It's the weekend after Halloween. Keon Williams' status is unknown. The ghosts of App State loom over the horizon. The possibility of being 7-2 and in control of its destiny is there for UTC.

The opportunity is large, no? It's a place UTC has longed to be for a while. It's a spot that creates magic and generates momentum. It's a spot that for the better part of the last two decades, when UTC has managed to step on to this stage, the light has been too bright and the moment too big.

As UTC beat ace Johnny Frierson tells us here, Marquis Green is ready to sub for Williams if needed. Green was good in Williams spot last week.

So what happens? Are the Mocs ready for this step, which could be a giant leap in the growth of a program?

A win sets the stage for a playoff trip and a potential Southern Conference title. A win changes the landscape and the expectations of UTC football going forward. A win could be the biggest in, well, it's hard to remember one that would be bigger, no?

The staircase that programs must ascend are built with games like this.

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  • photo
    Boston Red Sox's David Ross hits an RBI double during the seventh inning of Game 5 of baseball's World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals Monday, Oct. 28, 2013, in St. Louis.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

World Series

We have been intrigued by this World Series, more so than we expected.

Maybe it's the high-qaulity pitching. Maybe it's the drama. Maybe it's the quirkiness, as ace TFP columnist Mark Wiedmer termed it here.

Maybe we simply forgot how much we enjoy postseason baseball and the magnitude of each pitch.

We do not have a dog in this hunt, but tonight we're pulling for the Cardinals, if for no other reason than the only thing better than good postseason baseball is good postseason baseball in a Game 7.

Yes we picked the Red Sox in 6 before the series started. Still, a winner-takes-all Game 7 makes for great theater.

Is it in the cards? Is it in the Cards?

Can Cards starting pitcher Michael Wacka continue what is the most surprising and potentially greatest run in postseason history?

Also, if you're the Red Sox, you have to put all your chips in Game 6, considering you have the pitcher formerly known as Jake Peavy scheduled for Game 7.

———

This and that

— The NBA opened and the Heat won. Got a hunch LeBron and Co. are headed for 82-0. Thoughts?

— Also of note, the Lakers bench scored 41 fourth-quarter points as they rallied by the Clippers. Here's saying Kobe doesn't even know half of those guys' names.

— Tickets for tonight's Game 6 in Boston are drawing record numbers. A pair of front seats went for 24K and the average resale price was $1,860 according to reports. That some serious cabbage to go to a game. That said, if you go you won't have to listen to Tim McCarver, so that's nice.

— R.I.P. Marcia Wallace, who died at 70 this week. Wallace was Bob Newhart's secretary on "The Bob Newhart Show" and was a regular voice on "The Simpsons." Side question: Are "The Simpsons" like Oreos, French Dip sandwiches and sausage biscuits? You know, things that are good just about every time and things we kind of take for granted now?

———

Today's question

Ton of stuff to discuss today.

In honor of the NBA starting, can anyone stop LeBron and the Heatles?

In honor of Game 6, who you like tonight?

In honor of Marcia Wallace, who is the best Simpsons character not named Simpson?

In honor of Halloween, will Josh Dobbs be Dr. Jekyll or Mr. Hyde?

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 ...

9
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chas9 said...

In retrospect, we underappreciated Marcia Wallace. And Newhart and The Simpsons, which has had a long, long run. Of quality.

We've just gotta figure out a nickname for The Vols' latest knight in shining armor. All I can come up with is Jumpin' Josh or Dyno Dobbs, and those are terrible. Help, anyone?

And Signal Mountain's own Reese Phillips may play for the gridiron Cats Saturday.

UK's Blue and White game drew 15,000 yesterday. Can't conclude a lot from such affairs, but the game was officiated with the new rule that calls fouls on less conduct, which is supposed to result in more scoring. Looks like with The Cats' monster front line and strong slashers, Kentucky will score a ton. Don't think anybody has stronger bigs.

Gotta be CEO Burns or neighbor Ned. On Halloween, the creepy clown gets a notice.

October 30, 2013 at 10:30 a.m.
jomo11 said...

It is a big game for the Mocs. Injuries are taking there toll, Tommy Hudson already ruled out for game. A big loss, most consistent receiver and punt returner. Not sure about Chaz Moore or Keon. without that group, Mocs are down to about 50 players who play on both sides and special teams. . .that could take its toll vs an Appy team that now has FBS number of scholarships. . .Appy's offense has played VERY well the last 2 games 473 yards 2 weeks ago, and 515 yards vs. Georgia Southern. although they lost 2 weeks ago, because of 5 turnovers. . Appy's offense is starting to hit their stride . .. This would be a very difficult win for the Mocs. . .dont let Appy's record fool you

October 30, 2013 at 10:58 a.m.
JonathanMCook said...

Ten-Ring,

Unlike past trips to Boone, or basically the past three games in general, the Mocs are actually going into this able to do something I have never really seen unless I was watching the men's* and women's basketball team play:

The ability to win.

To quote another local online publication, this is no longer a gimmie game. However, if Yoseff & Co. think they can repeat what they did to Spy's Eagles last Saturday, then the mountain air might be making them a little too light-headed. My hope is they will keep them within 10 points.

The real test will be if they do break the Boone curse this Saturday, how will the community react? Anything less then 16,000 for the final homegame would more then justifies angry phone calls from Moc fans on SportTalk and one scathingly-written column from Weeds in the print edition.

In all fairness, I haven't watched the Simpsons since college and that was nearly 20 years ago. Mainly because they've stayed the same from season 1 when in 7th grade to season whatever it is now.

I would say my favorite non-Simpson's character is Principal Skinner (even if he's not the real Seymour Skinner). He acts like Mr. Rogers yet is deadlier then any video game character in "Call of Duty: Ghost Recon". That's scary.

October 30, 2013 at 11:01 a.m.
JonathanMCook said...

jomo-

Both Appy and GSU only have five additional scholarship players on their roster. It's not like playing an SEC roster. Those additional scholarships won't be available until the end of their season. As for the Mocs injury report, the loss of Tommy Hudson is an importent component, but not one that I believe will make or break the game. The Mocs have come too far to not faulter to the point if any of them were put in that situation like dude from the Cincinnati Bengals was in, each one would say "cut it off; stick me back in the game Coach Huesman"

I think. ^^()

October 30, 2013 at 11:18 a.m.
jgreeson said...

9er —

Your Cats will be tough to handle with the new rules — especially since UK is arguably the deepest team in the country.

We'll think about the nickname. You're right, Josh needs a handle.

Jomo —

Monster game for your Mocs. Hard to overstate in fact.

It will be difficult.

JMC —

Got the most recent package. Thanks.

Love the passion. And nice call on Skinner.

We have so many Simpsons favorites.

October 30, 2013 at 1:02 p.m.
BIspy4 said...

My fantasy second half draft has been pushed back an hour to 7 tonight. This is what happens when lawyers get involved (there are rour lawyers in the league and the draft is held at a law firm). That mesns not being able to see all of Game 6 tonight. And if the Sox win tonight or tomorrow, the Tea Party in the Boston Harbor (or Hah-buh) will look like a country club tea party compared to the celebration that will ensue.

Principal Skinner is a very good call. Big fan of Mayor Joe Quimby, too, and Chief Wiggum.

Look at the Eagles yielded to Samford in their implosion in Birmingham - a school record for the Bulldogs and the second most yards ever allowed by a GSU defense. Then came the Appy meltdown. Southern couldn't stop a 3 year old on a tricycle right now.

October 30, 2013 at 1:33 p.m.
Stewwie said...

Appy St. has indeed gotten better the past two weeks, but I don't think that changes the fact that we are the better team in this game. No excuses with the injuries either. We have capable RBs and WRs to fill in the voids left by Keon and Hudson.

The main issue for me will be Durden's play-calling. It hasn't been much of a negative factor thus far but that's because the Mocs' schedule to date has been pretty easy. But some of his play choices have left me scratching my head this year. As the schedule gets tougher from here on out, this could become a big deal from week to week.

JMC,

Even if the Mocs beat App 50-0, I'd be shocked if 16,000 showed up to Finley next Sat. (for reasons we've already discussed). I'd be happy with 12,000.

Jay,

After seeing the Heat roll through their big win streak last season, I wonder if they have a shot at breaking the Bulls' 72-win record. If I had to guess, I'd say they won't do it this year. The competition has gotten a little bit tougher overall and I don't think the Heat improved that much (if at all).

October 30, 2013 at 1:46 p.m.
jgreeson said...

Stewwie —

A 72-win seems almost un-possible (Hi, Ralphie Wiggam) because of the schedule (more back-to-backs for TV and such) and the fact that the ultimate prize is to win the whole thing.

The only way someone could pull it off is if they go on a sick run and the run becomes part of the magic — like winning 35 in a row or something. Then all you need is 37-10 over the remaining games.

Yes, UTC has more talent and hopes to win. App State has more experience and expects to win. Should be interesting.

Spy —

Did you hear Colin Cowheard saying he has 'suspicions' about Big Papi and PEDs?

Your head would have popped off.

October 30, 2013 at 2:02 p.m.
BIspy4 said...

5, there are fewer wastes of time as big as listening to anything Colin Cowherd has to say. He is on the Spy's permanent ignore button. And that (fill in space with bad word/derogatory term/pejorative) should have been canned years ago with his ill-considered diatribe in the wake of Sean Taylor's death.

October 30, 2013 at 4:02 p.m.
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