Tag:Alabama
Posted on: July 12, 2011 10:48 am
 

NCAA Football 12 is out today!

NCAA Football 12 is out today and I'm jacked. Hope the feeling is mutual because college football needs a break. The sport has been dipped in controversy, cheating, lawyers and courts too long this offseason. We need us some cfb even if it is from a PS3.


Quick background: For those of you who don't know, NCAA Football 12 is a video game. It is more addicting than 30 Rock depicting the thrills, detail and game day experience. This year's edition is the best yet. The Coaching Carousel function puts coaches on the hot seat. The new version includes the ability take the BCS out of the equation. That fantasy alone should be worth the $60 price. A MAC team can play in the Rose Bowl. The Big East can be kicked out of the BCS.

Think of the possibilities:

--Can't wait to play Ohio State in "shame" mode. That's assuming I can navigate my way through the "having a conscience" function to access the Buckeyes.

--Miami (Ohio) in the Rose Bowl. The RedHawks have never won a national championship in anything. Ever. This streak goes back a couple of centuries to when the school was founded. This being a video game is it possible Paul Brown (Class of '30) could jump on the dog pile if Miami beats USC for the national championship?

--Will asking the game to assemble the current membership of the WAC crash my PS3? Don't even try to sort out Legends and Leaders.

--If the Big East is cut out of BCS will West Virginia start an ugly rumor about the game's creator having a "reputation of being a partier"? 


--Mascot mode must: Delanys vs. Slives.

--There has to be a seven-on-seven function where gamers start with $10,000 in funny money and can pay it out to players any way they want. Will Lyles could narrate the tutorial.

--In light of the upheaval at Ohio State and deadlines for the game's production I'm really interested in who will be coaching the Buckeyes. Mike Leach is available.

--Need input, gamers: Jordan Jefferson on EA: Cotton Bowl version or spring-game version? 

--Does Texas Tech include Craig James on the sidelines or not?

--Where's the Pac-12 Network button?

--It seems only fitting that Mark Ingram graces the cover of this year's game. A tailback who won the Heisman in 2009 is pimping a fantasy version of the 2011 season marketed as NCAA 12.

Some things never change. In what might be an EA first, it is featuring a player whose school is currently on probation. Since 1987, Bama has been involved in more major football infractions cases (three) than national championships (two).

In this offseason of sleaze, there are some things you can't escape.


Posted on: April 20, 2011 10:47 pm
Edited on: April 20, 2011 10:48 pm
 

War has officially been declared in UA-AU

Alabama and Auburn have gone to war and I predicted it. 


I told you in February to expect a response to Harvey Updyke's alleged poisoning of the Toomer's Corner trees. History has proved that something would happen. People have died over the rivalry, so should we be surprised that Updyke reportedly was assaulted after a court appearance on Wednesday?

Absolutely not.


What was simmering below the surface now has boiled over. I told you in Wednesday's story the rivalry may have never been as fierce as it is now. Alabama can't stand Auburn and, it seems, Auburn can't stand success. For the first time in a long time the two schools are somewhat equals on the football field. They can't co-exist. Ever.


Whether you believe Updyke or not, that's not the point. The guy has manipulated this situation. If he wasn't in Alabama, he'd be hired as a Hollywood publicist. I’m writing about it. You're reading about it. SEC types can't get enough of it and blood pressure is boiling in Alabama. Comcast needs to bid on the broadcast rights.


Congrats, Harvey. You got us. 


"It's a good thing," my guy Clay Travis tweeted last week, "Auburn and Alabama fans don't have nuclear weapons."


"I'm serious about that."
Category: NCAAF
Tags: Alabama, Auburn
 
Posted on: March 25, 2011 8:50 pm
Edited on: March 26, 2011 11:08 am
 

West Regional tidbits

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Consume at your peril ...

--Kemba Walkers' 36 points tied the UConn record for most points in a tournament game. The guys he tied aren't bad. Ray Allen did it in 1995 vs. UCLA and Ben Gordon had 36 against Alabama in 2004. 

--Prior to Jim Calhoun arriving in 1986, UConn was 4-14 in the tournament. It is 43-13 under Calhoun. 

--UConn leads the Big East in players in the NBA, 11.

--UConn has made nine second-half comebacks this season in which it trailed by five or more points. The Huskies trailed San Diego State by four with 9:19 left when Jamaal Franklin was called for a technical. UConn outscored the Aztecs 25-14 the rest of the way. 


--Calhoun is second among Division I coaching "trees." Only Herb Sendek of Arizona State has more former assistants from his staff (eight) out there as head coaches. Calhoun has six.

--That was a career high for Arizona's Derrick Williams Thursday night, 32 points. He is average 23.6 points and 10.6 rebounds in the tournament

--Arizona (0-4) has never beaten Connecticut

--This Arizona team has made more threes (292) than the 1993-94 team that set the previous school record (279) with Damon Stoudamire and Khalid Reeves leading the way. 

--Thursday's win was Arizona's first over a top-10 in three years (Gonzaga, 2008). 
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: February 16, 2011 9:12 pm
Edited on: February 16, 2011 10:53 pm
 

Poison oak outbreak at Auburn

What I like about this story is the meticulous care taken in reporting a prank.

Example: Note the amount of poison found in the soil to the exact decimal point. Is this an autopsy or just dead trees?

If you didn't think the Auburn-Alabama rivalry was a big deal, it now involves the Paul Finebaum show, soil samples, presidential statements and tree forensics. Let's hope this isn't taken to the next level and some Bama fans steals every piece of toilet paper in Auburn. Although, that would kind of balance things out. No trees to roll, no rolls. Makes sense.

There is an obvious warning for Auburn fans going forward: With your famous trees dying,  don't drink the Kool-Aid. 
Category: NCAAF
Tags: Alabama, Auburn
 
Posted on: December 30, 2010 11:46 am
Edited on: December 30, 2010 4:15 pm
 

The Year in Dodd

Jan. 8 -- I'll never forget a crushed Mack Brown in the Rose Bowl hallway leading to the Texas lockerroom after losing to Alabama. I ask him, "Would Colt [McCoy] have made a difference?" Mack: "It wouldn't have been close."

Jan. 9 -- God, it's sunny outside in Newport Beach and God I want to be out on the golf course but while working on the national championship game folo, I find out South Florida's Jim Leavitt has been fired and Pete Carroll is leaving for the Seahawks. So much for golf. A hectic 2010 officially kicks off.

Feb. 1 -- What's so special about Cretin-Derham Hall High in St. Paul, Minn. No. 1 recruit Seantrel Henderson? A lot. But the kid's nationally televised commitment to USC turns out to be a mockery of the system.

Feb. 26 -- While the NCAA ponders making sickle-cell trait testing mandatory, another player dies of the affliction.

March 10 -- An all-access embedment with Baylor basketball during the Big 12 basketball tournament begins with the suggestion that Scott Drew might be the most despised coach in the conference.

March 12 -- I'm surprised to see that Baylor's pregame is as much religion as it is basketball. 

Mid-March -- During a first-round trip to San Jose for the NCAA Tournament I inquire about talking to quarterback Andrew Luck at nearby Stanford. I'm told he's busy with finals. Luck will later live up to the hype on the field too.

March 17 -- Before Butler bounces a ball in the NCAA Tournament I was there to chronicle what was then a stepping-stone job.

March 25 -- You know him as Ali Farokhmanesh, the all-Missouri Valley honorable mention who took out Kansas. His teammates know him as "Stroke".

March 28 -- Yes, Magic Johnson deserves to celebrate a Final Four berth with Michigan State.

April 6 -- That was the best coach of all time you saw win the national championship.

April 11 -- Even if the venue stunk, the Frozen Four was great again even if the fans of a team not involved in the championship game made the most noise.


May -- Jack Dodd and dad took in a three-game Cardinals-Padres series in San Diego. Ate fish tacos and made friends of ushers who openly root for Pads, leading one sarcastic Dodger fan to shoot back, "Let's go, sta-aff!! (clap-clap, clap-clap-clap)."

Also in May -- Haley Dodd graduates from high school, commits to the University of Missouri.

June 1 -- Big 12 spring meetings begin in Kansas City with all hell breaking loose.

June 3 -- Big 12 schools are so spooked by impending conference realignment that an ultimatum is issued: Declare loyalty or else. Nebraska won't commit, having been in talks with Big Ten since January.

June 9 -- Colorado announces it is joining the Pac-10.

June 11 -- Nebraska trashes Texas on the way to announcing its departure for the Big Ten in 2011. The Longhorns take their worst beating in seven years.

June 12-15 -- Texas re-commits to the Big 12 after a failed raid by the Pac-10 to take six Big 12 teams. The crucial hours come on Saturday, June 12 and Sunday, June 13 when Fox Regional and ESPN essentially decide it is in their best interests to make a financial commitment to a 10-team Big 12 rather than lose an entire BCS conference. If the Big 12 had gone away, the new Pac-12 could have, and still might, go out to bid leaving one or both (Fox, ESPN) from losing another BCS property.

A portion of the remaining Big 12 have nots (Missouri, Iowa State, etc.) agree that Texas should get an increased share of conference revenue just because it's Texas. There is no Big 12 with it. The Horns spend the rest of the year establishing its own network, reportedly with ESPN for $15 million per year.

June 16 -- Troy is burned to the ground.

Mid- June -- Went on a Mexican cruise to Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlan and Puerto Vallarta. Smoked a Cuban cigar, body surfed, watched World Cup soccer at 7 in the morning and enjoyed a seal show -- in the pool where my son and I were swimming! Mexican health laws are a little bit different than ours.

July 21 -- Nick Saban goes there with the p-word.

July 27 -- Tom Tuberville finds out he could retroactively win the 2004 national championship.

August -- Jack begins practice for CYO seventh-grade football. No two-a-days, more like two-a-weeks.

August 15 -- Haley moves into her University of Missouri dorm 30 years after her dad moved out of Columbia. Yes, a few sentimental tears were shed.

August 27 -- It's the Year of the Comeback.

August-September -- North Carolina football is ripped apart by an agent scandal than resulted in mass suspensions, an NCAA investigation and resignation of assistant coach John Blake.

September 7 -- Boise State launches itself into a season-long national conversation with a 33-30 win over Virginia Tech.

October -- Through a series of stories and spectacular performances we are introduced to this juco quarterback at Auburn. What's his name? Oh yeah, Cam Newton. We will learn more. Much more.

October 9 -- It's officially a national race again as defending national champ Alabama loses to South Carolina.

Also, I enjoy being a Kappa Kappa Gamma dad during the sorority's Dad's Weekend at Missouri. After tailgating, Haley and I watch Mizzou beat Colorado 26-0.

October 12 -- Turns out, South Carolina's win was a bigger deal than we thought. The Gamecocks become only the 45th team ever (in wire service era) to a beat a No. 1 team.


October 16 -- Wisconsin beats No. 1 Ohio State with something called the forward pass.

October 24 -- How crazy has the season gotten? The day before the game, Janet Dodd hits the Worldwide Interweb and somehow gets her husband a hotel room within walking distance of Faurot Field on homecoming weekend. Then People Magazine's "Sexiest Dad Alive" figures into Missouri's 36-27 defeat of BCS No. 1 Oklahoma.

October 31 -- Texas is well on its way to becoming the biggest disappointment of 2010.

Also in October -- Ascension beats CYO diocese power Cure of Ars for its only win of the season. Jack is proud. Dad is prouder.

November 4 -- Story breaks of Cam Newton's dad soliciting $180,000 from Mississippi State.

November 6 -- Matt Hayes of the Sporting News and I get trapped in the LSU postgame celebration after an amazing win over Alabama. We get a behind-the-scenes look at the LSU's coach's "Lesticles."

November 12 -- Why not go wall-to-wall on the scene with Cam Newton? With this ...

November 13 -- And this ...

November 23 -- And this ...

November 26 -- On the day after Thanksgiving, Auburn and Alabama play one of the best Iron Bowls ever and Boise State's Kyle Brotzman misses two chip shots against Nevada. Afterward, neither Cam Newton nor Brotzman are talking. For different reasons, of course.

Non-BCS story of the year: While covering that Boise-Nevada game on a bitterly cold night in Reno, a window in the press box has to be cracked so the clock crew "can hear the whistle." We're not exactly in Columbus, folks. Haven't heard a line like that since the Class 4-A state title game in 1984.

November 27 -- Miami's Randy Shannon is fired after an uninspired loss to South Florida. Jon Gruden gets his name in the search, as he always does, but in the first major hire of his career, AD Kirby Hocutt eventually picks Temple's Al Golden.

December 1 -- The best guy to talk about Kyle Brotzman's disappointment happens to be Boise resident and fan Bill Buckner.

December 1 -- Cam Newton is declared eligible to play in the SEC championship game because he didn't know his father had sought $180,000 for his services at Mississippi State. Hilarity ensues. Commissioners go nuclear.


December 4 -- Oregon beats Oregon State and Auburn beats South Carolina (again) to clinch BCS title game berths. Both schools are first timers in a BCS system than has seen only 14 teams play for the national championship since 1998.

December 5 -- Told you it was the Year of the Comeback.

December 6 -- Yes, we came this close to the end of the BCS.

December 8 -- When Tim Tebow left Florida, that made it a lot easier for Urban Meyer to resign. This time it stuck.

December 9 -- The nation's top rusher is a good guy. Really.

December 11 -- While in New York for the Heisman, a short, middle-aged man listening to his IPod strikes up a conversation with me on the elevator. Hello, Donny Osmond.

December 11 -- Cam Newton wins the Heisman surrounded by eight security goons but no family members in the post-ceremony presser. Sad.

December 13 -- Legends and Leaders? C'mon Big Ten.

December 19 -- Jack and dad enjoy the Chiefs and Rams in St. Louis during Christmas break. It's nice watching a game without a deadline to meet or a petulant coach to question. It's even better doing it with my wingman.

It was a great year. May 2011 be even better.

Posted on: November 30, 2010 5:51 pm
 

Either Cam is available or Auburn will be fined

One or the other is going to happen Saturday at the SEC championship game.

Cam Newton has not been available to the media for the past two games against Georgia and Alabama. That will be an issue this week in the SEC championship game. As you can see from the language below, all players and coaches must be made available to the media in an open lockerroom after the game or a school risks being fined.

I believe Auburn will take the hit. Why change now when the punishment is, say, $10,000? Joe Paterno absorbed a $15,000 fine a couple of years ago in the Rose Bowl when he didn't open his lockerroom.

I was at the Georgia game. I don't believe this is Auburn's decision. I think the school has been told by the NCAA and/or the FBI to clam up. They don't want the media to have the opportunity to ask Cam pointed questions.

If Auburn wins, the next issue will be with the Fiesta Bowl and BCS. There are similar rules for the BCS title game that require coaches and players to show up for scheduled interviews. This time it won't be just game night, it will be 10 or so days leading up to the game. That's a long time to keep a guy silent, and only adds to the doubt over Cam's innocence.

Anyway, here's the postgame language from the SEC:


 “All coaches and student athletes from each team shall be available for interviews after a 10 minute cooling off period. The timetable for the cooling off period begins when the head coach enters the dressing room immediately after the game. Following the cooling off period, each locker room will be open to the media for approximately 30 minutes. The head coach must proceed directly to the dressing room after the game unless requested to remain for a short interview (not to exceed four minutes) by CBS TV. The players must be available to the media for at least 30 minutes after the 10 minute cooling off period has expired. No more than four players will be brought outside of their respective locker rooms for easier media access. Equal access for all reporters, regardless of gender, must be provided.

                The post game media conference format shall specify that the losing coach shall be scheduled in the interview room first, followed by the winning coach. The interview with the losing coach should not exceed 10 minutes. The game’s MVP will also be on the podium with his coach during the post-game media conference time.  Regardless of any personal regular season radio or television contracts, the coach is first obligated to the entire media staffing the championship game and must report to the interview room immediately after the 10 minute cooling off period. The coach cannot delay a post game interview with the covering media to conduct a program for a single radio, newspaper, or television reporter unless requested to grant a short interview (not to exceed four minutes) by the television network that has purchased the rights to the championship game. After fulfilling the commitment to the entire media covering the game, the coach and players may participate in special interviews.

                Failure to comply with these rules and regulations may subject the coach and/or the institution to a fine by the Commissioner.”
Category: NCAAF
Posted on: November 26, 2010 6:32 pm
Edited on: November 26, 2010 8:03 pm
 

Auburn's season: The Movie


Even The Great Saban had to admit it.

In the middle of Friday's post-game handshake, Alabama's coach moved close to Gene Chizik and uttered the obvious: "Great comeback."

The two words are beginning to define Auburn's season. After Saturday's stirring 28-27 win in the Iron Bowl, it's becoming a lot easier to concentrate on the football portion of the Tigers. Off the field, they are a mystery until the NCAA gets through with them. On the field, they are playing with the resolve known only to crooked politicians.

While the world is collapsing around them, they continue to smile and do their jobs. That job is now down to beating South Carolina next week. Do that and Auburn is in the national championship game.

"God," Chizik said, "is good."

Fitting that the Auburn coach brought religion into the equation. That's what the Iron Bowl is the folks of Alabama. What they saw Friday is one of the all-time Auburn-Alabama games. The Tide obviously used iup their emotional ammo in the first quarter going up 24-0. From there, Auburn regrouped and outscored the Tide 28-3. Auburn's Comeback Kids are now 4-0 when trailing by 10-plus this season. The win was their eighth this season when trailing at any point in the game.

Comeback? Two years ago Chizik's hire was a joke, Cam Newton was transferring from Florida and Alabama was ramping up to win a national championship. Now it all seems so long ago.

What we've witnessed to date is as much a movie as it is a season. Don't laugh. Saban already has one.  Auburn's close up is getting, well, closer.

 

Category: NCAAF
Posted on: November 23, 2010 6:14 pm
 

BCS releases list of at-large candidates

The BCS exclusionary?

Not today with 22.5 percent of Division I-A still eligible for BCS bowls. That's the conclusion after reading a BCS press release Tuesday afternoon. The BCS released its list of teams still under consideration for the five elite bowls. In addition to the 19 teams contending for automatic berths by winning their conference there are still eight teams being considered for at-large berths.

Those are:

No. 11 (in the BCS) Alabama, 9-2. Eliminated from the SEC, the Tide could get in the conversation by beating Auburn.

No. 21 Arizona, 7-3. A longshot even if the Wildcats beat Oregon this week.

No. 12 Arkansas, 9-2. The LSU game is a playoff to stay alive in the BCS.

No. 4 Boise, 10-0. Let's be honest, if the Broncos don't win out they're not going to a BCS bowl.

No. 5 LSU, 10-1. The highest-ranked one-loss team would seem to be in if it beats Arkansas.

No. 19 Nevada, 10-1. Another longshot even with a win over Boise on Friday.

No. 20 Utah, 9-2. Consecutive losses to TCU and Notre Dame doomed the Utes.

No. 3 TCU, 11-0. The Frogs are nervous. If they are passed by Boise for the No. 3 spot, their BCS bowl chances are in jeopardy.

To be eligible for an at-large berth, a team must finish in the top 14 of the BCS standings. For a non-A.Q. (automatic qualifier) conference champion to get into a BCS bowl it must finish in the top 12. (Top 16 if it is ranked higher than a champion from a power conference.) Only the highest-ranked non-A.Q. meeting those parameters is guaranteed a spot in the BCS. 

What's amazing is that there are 19 teams still alive for automatic berths:

ACC: Florida State, North Carolina State, Virginia Tech
Big East: UConn, Pittsburgh, Syracuse, West Virginia
Big Ten: Michigan State, Ohio State, Wisconsin
Big 12: Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas A&M
Pac-10: Oregon, Stanford
SEC: Auburn, South Carolina

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com