published Thursday, August 7th, 2014

5-at-10: Biggest day ever? Plus, 'school' movies Rushmore

  • photo
    Miami Heat forward LeBron James shoots over San Antonio Spurs forward Tim Duncan (21) during their Game 2 of the NBA finals on Saturday, Nov. 8, 2014, in San Antonio.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

OK, this is pretty surreal. It's voting day in Hamilton County; it's the first day of school and our oldest starts first grade (monster deal and apparently he's the only one not freaking out); it's our 10th wedding anniversary; it's the day that the NCAA votes to either surrender a lot of control to the big five conferences or they deny the petition and sign the NCAA's eventual death warrant because that would force the big five conferences to spilt off and do their own thing; it's the birthday of Mike Trout and Sidney Crosby — only the best players in two of the four major North American team sports (also of note in this category: Tiger Woods and LeBron James were each born on December 30, so there's that).

From the "Talks too much" studios, basically, we're dealing with a lot of stuff here. Candlesticks always make a nice gift; maybe find out where she's registered and get a place setting. Let's get two.

NCAA

The NCAA board of governors is voting today whether to allow the power five conferences more autonomy.

It is the ultimate rock-and-a-hard-place dilemma for the NCAA.

Before we go any further, the NCAA has forced everyone's hand and put itself in this place by being arguable the worst billion-dollar operation this side of the Federal Government. This dilemma has been forged by years of NCAA indifference, indiscretion, intolerance and insincerity. The NCAA gets no pity from us because in the end, the group most altered by this is the college sports fans. If the NCAA suffers, they deserve it. College sports fans are facing a life-changing decision today that could drastically change the face of college sports and how they are operated and all the fans did in most cases was love their teams.

We must also tip the visor to Kansas State coach Bill Snyder, who on Wednesday fired the pure shot of truth.

"It's changed. I mean, college athletics, football in particular, has changed dramatically over the years," Snyder told reporters. "I think we've sold out. We're all about dollars and cents.

"The concept of college football no longer has any bearing on the quality of the person, the quality of students. Universities are selling themselves out."

And yes, the fact that this votes comes a week before the SEC Network launches — an endeavor that likely could make the strongest conference in all of college sports more than $100 million annually — is hardly lost in translation.

Here's the divergent paths for the NCAA: Vote to allow the big five to govern themselves and reset their rules — something college sports has been crying for the NCAA to do for years — and the NCAA becomes marginalized to no more than the fifth strongest body in college sports. Or vote to continue down this path of status quo and wait as the big five look to form their own alliance. This will delay the movement but it would leave the rest of college sports twisting in the wind.

And believe this: The message was clear from all of the big five commissioners during the media events in the last month. Change is coming, and they are dictating the change.

If the big five breaks away — and they will unless they are pleased with this vote because the TV dollars of the College Football Playoff are too great and they know they control those purse strings — it's anyone's guess how everyone else would operate in a Survivor-esque landscape of college athletics.

————

Anniversary

When you're growing up — and pardon the reflective chat as our son begins his academic pursuits in earnest — you hear people say things that matter and decisions that could affect your entire life.

It's not that kids don't listen as much as they can't hear or fathom the context.

We say this knowing that when we were in school, our wish list was clouded with very childish things and selfish desires. We think we know what we want, but we have no idea how to take the steps to true happiness or how to find the people with whom we will enjoy the stroll.

In the end, beyond the fundamental basics of food, clothes and shelter that we all are blessed with, all that matters is the people in your life and the relationships with them.

I know the Lord sent my wife to me for a variety of reasons. It was a blessing, and I thank Him for it daily.

There's a poetry and a purpose to knowing that you have found the one. For that, I am eternally grateful.

On this day — at about 5 p.m. on an amazingly cool Saturday in 2004 in south central Alabama — I was lucky enough to marry my one.

K, I love you — more every day.

———

Braves

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    Atlanta Braves' James Russell throws in relief against the Seattle Mariners in his game Wednesday, Aug. 6, 2014, in Seattle.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Another day, another loss.

Atlanta has lost eight straight. Not good. Or for some of our friends to the South, "No es bueno."

The Good: Not much.

The Bad: Too much.

The Upton: Wow. Stinky Upton went 1-for-3, which may tie him for a career best. Brother Justin went 0-for-4 with four Ks. Has baseball adopted a new rule that only one Upton is allowed a hit per game?

Ouch-Standing.

———

This and that

— In our research about the oddities of Aug. 7 we also discovered that American critic and academic Judith Crist died on this day two years ago. If Judith Crist married a man with a lisp and he got passionate and said "Jesus Christ Judith Crist," well, those would run together pretty quick.

— Checking Twitter this morning, we saw @darrenrovell posted at the Hartford (Ohio) Fair they have deep fried a pop tart and covered it with Fruity Pebbles. And we're still having trouble figuring out why America is the fattest country in the world?

— Our deepest apologies to DCrotty and Co. about our lack of PGA Championship preview in Wednesday's 5-at-10. That's on us and we have no excuses. So here's the question we posed to Paschall on Press Row: "Would you take the field or Rory, Rickie and Sergio?" We're taking the trio of guys who either individually or collectively have been in the mix for almost all of the big events of the season. That said, we're hoping for a miracle and Tiger and Phil to be in the mix. Call us silly. Or nostalgic. Or just plain tipsy. Thank sir, we'll have another. It's 8 o'clock in the morning. Scotch? (Yes, we just pulled the rare Animal House-Mr. Mom triple lindy — Back to School — and got a 9.9 form the Russian judge).

Today's question

Gang, we're opening the mic and go to work.

But in honor of going back to the classroom — and a rare "Back to School" movie reference above — we want a Rushmore of movies with the word 'School' in the title.

Go.

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 ...

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TennFlyer said...

Back to School, Old School, School of Rock, and School Daze. The pickins were a little slim. To paraphrase Animal House in regard to college football as we know it -- Let it go. War's over, man. The Big Five dropped the big one.

August 7, 2014 at 10:46 a.m.
jgreeson said...

Tenn Flyer —

Well, used D. Day line.

And we are forced to concur.

OK (although we would have had School Ties in there) let's adjust the Rushmore to films about high school. Deal? Deal. Go.

August 7, 2014 at 11:17 a.m.
ordinaryguy said...

High school films Rushmore...First and funiest Fast Times at Ridgemont High reminds me of my days at the REAL Hixson High School during the early 70's...Dazed and Confused...Cooley High, the inspiration for the series What's Happening...and last but not least the best of the best Blackboard Jungle...I know a little before your time JG, but still the measuring stick

August 7, 2014 at 11:27 a.m.
jomo11 said...

The Big Five vote is a rubber-stamp no use speculating what will happen if it doesnt pass. In fact it is so watered down that even the NON-Big Five are voting in favor. . . . .The Big Five are so greedy that after this the NCAA will no longer be the villan. The press and fans will now shift the greed and distust factor away from the NCAA and towards the Mike Slive's and Jim Delaney's of the world . . . I just love it how Mike Slive says that we care SO MUCH about the student athletes they we are going to ask for autonmy, when the ONLY reason he wants autonmy has NOTHING to do with the welfare of the student-athlete. And he is the pied piper from the Southern Press who are afraid to disagree with him for fear of being "cut-off". . .Come on Mike if you really cared about the student-athlete give them revenue sharing from the SEC network. dont just throw them a bone and say "here is $3,000" for cost of attendence, give the athletes $100,000 or $200,000 and stop bragging about $20 and $40 and $60 million payouts to your member schools.. . . .and the O'bannon case or a new one similar just might force the hand of the Big Five and force them to share revenue with the athletes and THAT will be the day that college sports changes as the SEC's of the world will be forced by the courts to share their revenue or face anti-trust problems and lose their tax free status

August 7, 2014 at 12:04 p.m.
fechancellor said...

The Ramones vehicle, "Rock, Rock, Rock, Rock-n-High School.

August 7, 2014 at 1 p.m.
Stewwie said...

Happy anniversary, Jay. Well said in the column today.

Jomo,

$100k to $200k per athlete? Yeah right. So long as the football players have to attend classes to justify their school-sponsored scholarship, no extra "cost of attendance" monies need to be paid. If you want to complain about how big the TV money pot is, blame yourself and other college football fans who have made the game popular enough to get that way.

If this is primarily about money (and not getting an education), maybe the system should be overhauled to allow schools to sign players but not give them scholarships or mandate that they sign up for classes. Then the players would represent the school on the field only, and they would be bona fide employees (and their income would be taxed). If that were to happen, amateurism would officially be dead and the players would have to start dealing with the IRS instead of the NCAA.

August 7, 2014 at 1:56 p.m.
MocTastic said...

The NCAA voted to allow the big five to do their own thing...college sports as we know it is headed towards the crapper.

August 7, 2014 at 2:09 p.m.
GratefulDawg said...

The story about the big 5 autonomy and the NCAA leaves me feeling split between concern about the future of college football and a jaded feeling of "well, it was bound to happen...what are you gonna do?" I love college football, but my cynicism doesn't allow me to feign any righteous indignation about big money and self interests taking over the game. That snowball started hurtling downhill a few decades ago. This move towards the big conferences and their newfound autonomy feels less like a seismic shift and more like a simple dropping of the guise of amateurism and student-athletes. And with all that said...I am eagerly awaiting the start of the 2014 college football season in which I will support the game wholeheartedly and in some small way, feed the beast. I'm not part of the solution and I feel in some way that I am part of the problem.

Jay, congrats on the wedding anniversary and good luck to the little man as he starts his elementary school adventures. Big day at the casa de Greeson.

August 7, 2014 at 2:55 p.m.
jomo11 said...

"" Areas that will not fall under the autonomy umbrella include postseason tournaments, transfer policies, scholarship limits, signing day and rules governing on-field play. " this is the part that is a WIN for FCS schools. any change in those WOULD have hurt, but abscense of those and there really is ZERO effect on SoCon schools. . . . .now Sunbelt and MAC - the lower FBS schools, could get hurt

August 7, 2014 at 3:53 p.m.
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