published Wednesday, January 29th, 2014

5-at-10: Super Bowl contest where you could win stuff, NCAA unions, and Motley Crue's legacy

Gang, here's hoping the weather did not cause you too much worry and exactly zero pain or injury. If you can stay home (and log on and chat with the folks here at the warm, cozy and cuddly 5-at-10) well we highly recommend that.

We will be headed to the TFP compound later in the a.m., and hopefully the roads will be cleared. We also have Zac Brown tickets for tonight, and that seems like a long shot at this point. So it goes we guess.

From the "Talks too much" studios, stay warm and thirsty friends.

Super Bowl match-ups

We have a slew of prop bets to share later today. Or tomorrow. Or sometime before the kickoff. We'll get some prop bets out there before kickoff.

  • photo
    Denver quarterback Peyton Manning listens to a question during media day for Super Bowl XLVIII. He follows a record-setting regular season with a chance for his second NFL title.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Hey, do we want to have a contest? We say yes. It will be the unofficial Eugene Robinson Super Bowl Proposition Bets contest. We'll post 7 prop bets with a tie-breaker and whomever gets the most right will win some UTC hoops tickets and some other stuff. Deal? Deal. The seven prop bets will be in the question section below. You can enter here or email us at Giddy-up.

Of all the match-ups out there — Sherman versus Manning; the Seattle running game against the Denver front seven; "Skittles" vs. "Pot Roast" (seriously); Coke and Pepsi vs. Soda Stream — here's the biggest one in the game: Denver in the red zone against Seattle's defense in the red zone.

Denver was the best team in football inside the opponents' 20, scoring TDs almost 73 percent of the time, and Peyton Manning had an eye-popping 120.7 passer rating in the red zone. Dude seldom makes mistakes and almost never makes red-zone mistakes.

Seattle allows TDs on less than 40 percent of opponents' trip into the red zone. It's the ultimate strength vs. strength. Money.

We also heard a staggering stat that could greatly benefit the Seahawks. In 10 playoff games, there have been a total seven defensive pass interference penalties called, and if they are going to let Richard Sherman and the Legion of Boom put their hands on the Denver receivers, well, advantage Seattle.


College players union

A slew of Northwestern University football players have filed paperwork with the National Labor Relations Board to start a union.

That will either be the total game-changer or nothing. There is no in between.

The group petitioning to be recognized as an official work group has the support of several nationally recognized unions, including the national steelworkers group, which does include steelers but does not include the Steelers.

Whether this is a giant leap into the unknown that could completely and totally change college sports in every facet or another day in January is unknown. (There will be more than a few folks who will point to the irony of this coming from Northwestern, a group of student-athletes who are getting a quarter-of-a-million-dollar education, which works to a better than $60,000 in compensation for their efforts.)

But here's the cut of the issue: If the players unionize and start making demands for better this or more of that, are they prepared to walk out/strike. In turn, if the demands reach statuses that colleges can't match, are they willing to lock out the players?

And whether the players or the schools are willing to do it on a Saturday in the fall.


NFL Hall of Fame

The finalists of this year's Hall of Fame will be voted on Saturday.

Here are the names:

Derrick Brooks, Tony Dungy, Marvin Harrison, Walter Jones, Michael Strahan, Charles Haley, Kevin Green, Andre Reed, Jerome Bettis, Tim Brown, John Lynch, Will Shields, Aeneas Williams, Morten Andersen and Eddie DeBartolo Jr. Of note: Ray Guy and Claude Humphrey were nominated by the veteran's committee.

Who's going to make it and who would you vote for?

We'll share our views around lunch. (Yes, we;re running short on time.)


This and that

— Do you know what Tiger Woods has become? He's become that family patriarch that tells the kids no matter if they are in Dalton heading to Atlanta or in Chattanooga heading to Atlanta, "we're about 30 minutes out." Despite being the season-opener at a course he has routinely dominated, Woods expressed confidence that "he's not far off" despite his 79 Saturday that forced him to miss the secondary cut. It's the same song and dance he offers after finishing anywhere from 4th to 14th to 40th at the major championships in the last five years. "Not that far off." Really? Not that far off of what, an 80.

— Reports from the various recruiting experts have Adoree' Jackson eliminating Tennessee in his decision process. Jackson is the No. 9-overall prospect in this recruiting cycle and is crazy talented. Still, even the most ardent anti-Orange folks will have a hard time bagging on the haul Butch Jones and Co. have assembled. They may have 99 problems but a recruit ain't one.

— If Teddy Williams and Roger Staubach are the picture-perfect images of guys that stepped down at the right time, stars leaving the games they loved on top, where does former defensive guru Monte Kiffin rank? Kiffin was considered the Tampa 2 teacher a decade ago, now failed stints working with his son and a disastrous year with the Cowboys have left Ole' Monte demoted to assistant head coach/defense after the Cowboys were DFL in the NFL in yards allowed and total defense. What kind of title is that? Assistant head coach/defense? Are we the official head coach/5-at-10? And if Monte struggles in his next role, is he going to put "Assistant head coach/coffee" on his next business card?

— Looking for something for the college football nut that already has everything? If they have a pet try something from

— Tonight is a monster college basketball date for the Tennessee Vols, as TFP UT beat ace Downtown Patrick Brown shares with us here. UT is 12-7 overall and 3-3 in the SEC. They are three-games off the pace in the conference and tied for seventh in a very blah-tastic league. UT faces Ole Miss tonight, and there's a real chance Ole Miss could be right there in the mediocrity mosh pit of three or four teams believing they deserve the third or fourth SEC invite to the NCAA dance. If Tennessee falls tonight, well... we actually don't what to say there, which is saying something. This one feels like a must-win in a lot of ways.

— Doug McDermott has skills. That is all.


Today's question(s)

Gang, feel free to discuss any of the prop bets that tickle your fancy. You're more than welcome to weigh in on the NFL Hall of Fame candidates or if you think Tiger Woods is "30 minutes out."

If you need more, well, here are but two talking points:

Motley Crue has announced they retiring after this 72-stop tour is over. Yes, in some ways that's like the boneheaded TFP Sports Editor saying, you know what, we're going to retire in another 25-27 years, so there's that. Plus, no telling which one of these cats could break a hip or battle a "Bingo" addiction between now and 72 shows. Still, the Crue was boss for a big part of our formative years. Who's on your Rushmore of 1980s rock? Discuss.

Here are the Prop Bets for the unofficial Eugene Robinson Super Bowl Proposition Bets contest:

Guide — If it's an over/under that means you have to pick whether you think the final number will be above or below (over/under) the number Vegas set:

• Peyton Manning over/under passing yards at 289 yards.

• Renee Fleming, the opera lady singing the national anthem, has an over/under of 2 minutes and 25 seconds to sing the pregame song.

• The over/under on the longest touchdown in the game is 44 yards.

• LeBron James' total points (Saturday vs. the Knicks) is minus-5.5 over Seahawks total points

• Will any member of the Red Hot Chili Peppers be shirtless during the performance?

• Player who scores the first touchdown will have a jersey number above or below 79.5?

• Denver minus-3 over Seattle

TIE-BREAKER: Total points scored in the game (with Price is Right rules in effect so do not go over)

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.
MocTastic said...

So many aspects to the concept of paying football players and defacto making them employees. Things like unemployment compensation if you drop them off scholarship, workman's compensation, labor lockouts as you said. Another thing, if they are an employee one could argue the scholarship they receive is a benefit, a taxable benefit. Northwestern players could get that $200 a month stipend, but they might have to pay income tax on that AND on a scholarship worth about $60,000 a year. Remember that saying, be careful what you wish for, you just might get it.

Saw an advertisement on local tv today asking for college athletes who were injured while playing/practicing to contact an attorney's office. Obviously that is for a potential class action suit wanting compensation for damages and/or workman's compensation.

This is a huge kettle of worms being opened up by the players and big schools. This could end up down the road with the big schools basically having a semi-pro minor league football team and all other schools dropping football due to all the above issues mentioned.

And meanwhile, they keep forgetting...Title IX. The slowest runner on the women's cross country team has to get paid the same as the star QB or you will end up in federal court so fast...

January 29, 2014 at 10:28 a.m.
JonathanMCook said...


I grant you I live more in the "plains" then the mountains so comparing this icy smackdown with the one that hit Big D seven weeks ago is probably not a accurate comparision. you know what I felt.

The Monte Kiffin story is really not "that" big locally. The DMN is devoting their front page coverage to Super Bowl stories and local commentary from the Sports Editors. But it is what it is. Was surprised to hear JR talk about it this morning.

Rushmore: Motley Crue, Guns -n- Roses*, Def Leppard, and Poison. Please note mine is based on performance acts that have maintained a following along with most of their original members for 10+ years.

*Guns only had the majority of their original members for 5-6 years and while no longer "active", the footprint they left is something that may never be repeated.

And the press release doesn't surprise me. I saw a respectable sit-down interview with Vince Neil many years ago when the group was still high on everyone's play list and he flat out said "If any one of us decides to leave or retire, that's it. There will be no more Motley Crue. It is me, Nikki, Tommy, etc." That's rare in any group.

January 29, 2014 at 10:45 a.m.
chas9 said...

Arguably, Cat fans are just as dispirited by UK's 5-point road loss at LSU yesterday as Vol fans are by UT's 26-point road loss. Florida's better than LSU and Kentucky aspires to a higher finish than does UT.

I and my fellow bluebloods have to adjust our expectations downward. This ain't gonna be the year we thought it could be.

Here's the glass-half-empty view. None of the Cats starters had a good game, not even Young (23/7). He made some bad decisions and defensive lapses. Dakari had an impressive game, but his ceiling this year is lower than Willie's appeared to be. But the half-arsed Willie helps nobody, and that may be the version we're stuck with. The Harrison twins are most responsible for how ugly UK's play was. Bad body language. The Cats haven't decided to play hard for 40 minutes. They should have solved the doubling and tripling on Randle by now.

At the end of January, even the youngest team in the nation should be farther along, but there is a glass-half-full view. LS&U has some seriously talented players and will rise as the season proceeds. But UK has way more talent. After spotting a 16 point lead, Kentucky won the rest of the game, even while misfiring on five cylinders. If he can develop fast enough, Dakari will be a beast. The team is just now learning to BE a team, so we could see much improvement. The Wildcats showed no poise. With experience they may learn to stick to their game, even under road pressure. Their bench is deeper than last year.

Ditto on your analysis of UT-Ole Miss.

Yes, McDermott is fun and amazing. But how strong will he be on the next level? (Just asking.)

Don't worry about Adoreé. Who wants a dude named Adoreé? Nothing but trouble.

And it's not Olé Monte. You say "Olé" to a bull. It's Ol' Monte or Ole Monte. But is it Monté?

January 29, 2014 at 10:52 a.m.
jgreeson said...

From friend of the show StuckinKent (with the first entry of the contest)

I'm in.

1) Under

2) Under

3) Under

4) Lebron James -5.5

5) Yes

6) Over

7) Seattle +3

Tiebreaker: 38

I'm cheering for the Broncos and hope it works out for them. But Seattle has a great defense, and the weather is going to be at least a little chilly, which hurts offense. I think it's a close game- like 21-17 Seattle.

For it to go over 2:20, she'd have to go about 50 seconds longer than last year, if I remember right. I've been timing the National Athem for the last several years because I saw this prop bet a few years back and thought it was one of the weirder ones I'd seen.

Who knows about longest touchdown? And who knows about over/under the player number too? I went and looked at both teams roster, but it's just a shot in the dark.

Lebron is going to try to show up Carmelo and score at least 30 points. Like I said, I'd be surprised if Seattle scored more then 28 at the most. Lebron is going to be closer to 40, I say.

Of course a Red Hot Chili Pepper will be shirtless. Why wouldn't they be?

And there's my losing entry.

January 29, 2014 at 11:07 a.m.
jomo11 said...

Jay- I think for the safety of the players, the Mocs should not go to Davidson. They can make the game up later in the season. The schedule is pretty full, so the game should be played in CHATTANOOGA, i mean UTC already beat Elon by 20 and Davidson lost to Elon, so nothing really to prove. . .and if Davidson wont come to Chattanooga, then the SoCon should just consider it a forfiet on Davidson's part. . . Davidson's just a bunch of students who are pissed because they did not get accepted to Duke . . . your thoughts ?

January 29, 2014 at 11:18 a.m.
fechancellor said...

10 Ring, I'll not be choosing the winning hand today. All you wacky crosspolinated bets have upset the delicate workings of the"Little Smart Pill Machine." I'm forced to reprogram and reboot, and this could take a while.

On College players forming a union for more (notice I said more) money, I'm not adverse for paying a small dispend, especially for those players from poor families, who have no pocket money when they get to school. Otherwise, if it's a union they get, who's going to run the union, IMG, Nike, a board of agents? I'm for going Ronald Reagan and Scott Walker on them if it comes to that pass.

I'm reading "The System" almost no one even many players leave a lasting impression of pristine amateur athletics for the sake of pure competition.

So if there is to be a union, soon players' off field "activities" could be shielded by a union's version of due process staying the hand of any unilateral action by the athletic department or the university president or an honor council. Think NEA.

FSU's Tennessee specialist braved the elements climbing up to Space Mountain High. I'm intrigued. This could work reel well. Saturday home game Sunday and Monday fishing out of St. Marks or Apalachicola.

January 29, 2014 at 12:12 p.m.
WilliamRscott said...

Not sure when they started or when they stopped but REM, the Smithereens + VanHagar are 3 of the most under-rated bands in Rock-n-Roll history.

Mocs Club lunch w/ Coach WW will be re-scheduled for a date yet to be determined. March 20: ZBB at the Roundhouse.


January 29, 2014 at 12:17 p.m.
jgreeson said...

Jomo —

We'll forward along your idea to the ever-pleasable, ever-pleasant, always-smiling Bobby McKillop and see what he allows. We feel certain Smilin' Bob would be tickled to bring his boys to town.

Stuck —

You are in.

9er —

Thought about you as the Cats struggled mightily in Baton Rouge. Here's our takeaways:

  • Despite great freshman skills, this team looks more like last year than 2012.

  • At times they got out-hustled, which certainly will make today's practice less enjoyable

  • Despite their great skills, UK still will struggle against zones, especially in the Dance when the gyms become domes and shooting is even more challenging

Are the Cats talented? You bet. Final Four skills and despite his prickly nature, Coach Cal is very underrated as an X-O guy. But there are definite warning signs about a team that could fail to get through the first weekend of the tournament.


Crue and G-n-R are definitely on our list. We'll likely finish with the budding career of U2 in the late 1980s and pre Hagar Van Halen, but we're still deciding.

MT —

This could be a huge kettle of fish, and while you are correct about the umbrella of title IX if this becomes a work place rather than a Federal funding issue that may wipe away Title IX since there are no such requirements on every day vocations.

Plus, the union could be a way around that too.

We need to get a labor lawyer on the horn.

January 29, 2014 at 12:22 p.m.
chas9 said...

I'm more concerned with whether The Allman Bros. Band can survive Derek and Warren leaving than the demise of The Crüe.

Appreciate Pasquali including UK recruiting along with the obligatory UT recruiting news. Given the histories of both schools, Kentucky's class may be the more impressive. Looking over the lists for all schools, I'm struck by how few five-stars there are.

Most of us have heard that a former Vol is leading The Broncs into battle, but did you know that three other Big Orange boys play for Denver? They are Robert Ayers, Britton Colquitt and Malik Jackson. Surprisingly (given UK's history), Wildcats Jacob Tamme, Danny Trevathan, and Wesley Woodyard are also on the roster. I think I'll root for Denver.

Comparing this year's Wildcats to the 2012 and 2013 teams, as well as Cal's other UK squads, may suggest that ordinary one-and-done McDonald's All-Americans are not enough to win it all. 2012's AD was a once-in-a-generation player and MKG almost that level. The Uniblocker has followed his 22/19/7 game with 30/7/8 for the pesky Pelicans.

January 29, 2014 at 12:25 p.m.
jgreeson said...

FE to the C —

Excellent post and here's hoping the LSPM is fixed post haste.

And dude, if he gets on the FSU campus, let's just say that the 'scenery' is top-notch. Want to know the two reasons people assume FSU is in the SEC: 1) Football; 1B) Co-eds.

BiB —

That's great news about the Zac Brown show. We had tickets and were sweating the hill climbing around midnight.

March 20 — be there or be square.

January 29, 2014 at 12:28 p.m.
jgreeson said...

From friend of the show StuckinKent —

I don't want any excuses if the Mocs beat Davidson. I want to play them at Davidson. It can be later on in the year. Mocs have a week off between 2/13 and 2/20. Davidson plays on the 12th and 15th. We could go up there on Monday the 17th of February if they want to cancel the game. Sounds fair to me.

As for UK fans- 9er- you're right. Never seen a more dispirited bunch. Everyone is downright depressed up here. Someone found the silver lining though- everyone will be back because this team won't get anyone in the NBA, other than maybe Randle. Did you see where Cal grabbed one of the Harrison's in the middle of the game and pushed him? It was in the middle of the action and it was an offensive play. He was starting over by the UK bench on the play. He started to cut the wrong way, and Cal went two steps onto the court and grabbed him and pushed him to go the other direction. That tells you where Cal is with this team. Like my father-in-law (a big UK fan) and I said after the UofL game- the Cats have a great collection of players. They are not a team. And there are no signs that they are going to become a team anytime soon. We said that in late December. It's a month later. Still the same story. The Cats will win games with more talent sometimes. But they aren't going to win as many as they should. I think there's three more losses on the regular season schedule this year. That leads me to think that this is 5 or 6 seed in the Dance. They'll be dangerous and probably get to the Sweet Sixteen on talent alone. But they are not a Final Four contender at this point I don't think.

January 29, 2014 at 12:48 p.m.
BIspy4 said...

Eugene Robinson Proposition bets? Ouch.

Once decided to go see the longtime coach at my high school coach his final game, instead of going to see Motley Crue that night. Their opening act? Something called Guns N Roses.

80s bands I go: 1. GNR 2. Motley 3. Whitesnake 4. Ratt Now, my preference over all of them is Van Halen, but they really got their start in the 70s and they broke up the original lineup by the middle of the decade, though the reformed VH had a bunch of hits with Sammy Hagar.

January 29, 2014 at 1:52 p.m.
jgreeson said...

We have received a nice run of ER Proposition bets entries on the interwebs, including one from longtime regular Eustice Chase...

Who also brought the hammer on today's Rushmore with Motley Crue Metallica Bon Jovi and Poison. Well-played indeed.

January 29, 2014 at 2:10 p.m.
GratefulDawg said...

If the unionization of college football players does happen, it will be several years down the road. It is an issue that involves big money, court cases, and a cavalcade of lawyers. I suspect it will linger like that patch of ice in the curve near my house that gets very little sunlight. And like that ice patch, it will eventually melt away. The NCAA could facilitate the process by addressing some of the reasonable concerns of the players seeking to unionize. The safety issues are not going away. From the NFL down to pee-wee leagues and everything in-between, player safety has become paramount. Issues of "full ride" scholarships that do not cover the basic necessity costs and scholarships that can be rescinded due to player injury or over-signing are issues that the NCAA should have already addressed. If history is our best means of predicting future behavior, the NCAA will offer up a few half-assed measures in regards to these issues and do the bare minimum to stay relevant for another couple of years.

On other stuff...Sir William of Brainerd wasn't sure if R.E.M would qualify as a 1980s band. The guys met in Athens in the late 1970s, played a few gigs in 1980 as Twisted Kites, and then recorded "Radio Free Europe" as R.E.M in 1981. So yeah, they qualify.

9er mentioned the future of the Allman Brothers without Derek and Warren. The Allmans survived fatal motorcycle accidents that took Duane Allman and Berry Oakley. They have broken up multiple times. Line-up changes have been a constant. There was so much drama in the band after that drug bust most of us thought there was no way they could ever get back together. Yet, through it all, some incarnation of the Allman Brothers Band rises from the ashes.

January 29, 2014 at 2:20 p.m.
MocTastic said...

Interwebs? Hmm...wondering if JG watches Fast and Loud.....

January 29, 2014 at 2:59 p.m.
chas9 said...

Stuckey--Agree with all you said. I did see Cal manhandle one of the twins. Thought he was channeling Bobby Knight. I'd like to see a quick change in chemistry. Young could go pro, too, but he still has a lot to learn.

January 29, 2014 at 3:20 p.m.
MocTastic said...

Young is pro, he plays at UK. Difference in UK and NBA is NBA has a salary cap.

January 29, 2014 at 3:26 p.m.
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