published Wednesday, February 15th, 2012

5 at 10: Tennessee hoops, Peyton Manning and the legend of Jeremy Lin continues

From the "Rhinestone Cowboy studios," let's go.

  • photo
    Tennessee's Kenny Hall (20) and Jordan McRae (52) celebrate their teams 60-57 victory over Connecticut in an NCAA college basketball game on Saturday, Jan. 21, 2012, in Knoxville, Tenn. (AP Photo/Wade Payne)
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Huge night of hoops

Two games of local interest — Tennessee at home against Arkansas and UTC at App State — are not all that meaningful on a national scale tonight.

That said, they have huge meaning for the Vols and the Mocs.

For the Vols, a win tonight would equal a season-high four game winning streak. It would push the Vols to 14-12 overall and 6-5 in the league. It would make an NIT bid a distinct possibility. All of those are tangible things that are very impressive.

On an intangible level, a win tonight will only happen if the Vols protect the basketball, something that has not exactly been a strength.

For the Mocs, who have been eliminated from getting a first-round bye in the Southern Conference tournament, almost all of the value of tonight is on an intangible level. A win tonight could go a long way to easing some nerves. A win would help re-build some confidence for a team that has too much talent to be in last place in the SoCon North.

And know this, these Mocs are talented enough to make a run in the SoCon tournament. Does that start tonight? On an emotional level, it quite possibly could.

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    New York Knicks guard Jeremy Lin reacts after hitting a basket during the fourth quarter of an NBA basketball game against the New Jersey Nets, Saturday, Feb. 4, 2012, at Madison Square Garden in New York. Lin led all scorers with 25 points as the Knicks defeated the Nets 99-92. (AP Photo/Bill Kostroun)

NBA storylines — Good, bad and ugly

Three items of NBA interest from Tuesday:

— There are times that the media takes a story and runs with it. It happens in a 24/7 media-cycle world. Sometimes those stories flash out quickly (Tony Romo). Sometimes the backlash turns normal thinking folks against the subject (think Tim Tebow). And sometimes the ride can keep building to the point that everyone is starting to notice.

That's where we are with Jeremy Lin and Lin-sanity. After setting a record for the most points scored in a player's first five NBA starts, Lin's last-second, game-winning 3-pointer lifted the Knicks over Toronto on Tuesday night. Lin, the undrafted point guard from Harvard who was twice released, continues to make the most of every opportunity. Buckle up, because the Lin-wheel is just starting to turn. In fact, we had this conversation with the 5-at-10's mom yesterday.

5-at-10 mom: "Hey, how about that Lin kid, huh?"

5-at-10: "What? Are you watching the NBA now?"

5-at-10 mom: "Of course not, but that's a great story huh? You should have gone to Harvard."

5-at-10: "Uhhh, yeah... Wait. You know Jeremy Lin went Harvard?"

5-at-10 mom: "Duh... as Charlie Sheen would say, 'Lin-nning.'"

And with that she hung up the phone. Yep it was a walk-off one-liner and if your mom knows that much about Jeremy Lin, well, it's becoming a national story

— Sweet buckets of irony bordering on hypocrisy, but Shaquille O'Neal said Tuesday that it would be a "travesty" for Dwight Howard to leave Orlando. Yes, that Shaq, who left Orlando for L.A. in 1996. Yes, to that Dwight Howard, who is looking to make a move to an organization that is better positioned for a title run. Shaq says he left for a better offer, and that's different because the Magic can offer Howard more money than any other team. OK, Shaq, you left for more money, but in truth, that's just semantics. You left for a better situation, albeit a better financial one. Howard's looking for a better situation, too, albeit one that is more designed for winning titles. Dial it back a little Shaq, especially considering Howard's next contract will make him enough money for three lifetimes. Unless...

— Add Allen Iverson to the tale of financial caution for every first-round draft pick in every sport. According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, Iverson can't pay his bill to a Georgia jewelry store. Granted that bill is almost $900,000, but still. Iverson made more than $154 million in his NBA career, and that's not counting endorsements. Wow, that's a lot of cabbage. What's the over/under before A.I. ends up in jail? If we gave you 18 months, you taking the over or the under? That's some bad financial practices. (Practice? You talkin' about practice. Practice!).

  • photo
    Indianapolis Colts quarterback Peyton Manning (18) runs for 27 yards against the Oakland Raiders in the fourth quarter of an NFL football game in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, Dec. 26, 2010. The Colts won 31-26. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)

Turn the page

OK, it has happened. We have become tired of the "Will he stay or go" storyline about Peyton Manning and the Colts.

Actually, we have become tired of listening to Jim Irsay hedge his bets and play this out in the media. Here's what ESPN's John Clayton quoted Irsay saying: "We want this to be his decision. We want him back if he wants to come back. We can work out the contract if he wants to work it out. It's going to be Peyton's call."

Puh-lease. Irsay's latest statement is an obvious between-the-lines volley.

"We can work out the contract" means there's no way we're paying him the $28 million roster bonus when we're going to draft Andrew Luck in April.

"It's going to be Peyton's call," translates into "Hey, Colts fans, please don;t blame me for this even though I deserve a bunch of the blame. I'm trying to spin this because I refused to act like a man at the beginning and say, 'Hey we don't know if Peyton's ever going to be able to play again, and we have to take Luck. We have to. So we're going to give Peyton the option of coming back at a reduced rate or exploring his other options. We could never fully repay Peyton for what he's meant to the Colts, but with the salary cap, we can cripple the franchise at the most important position in sports with a giant unknown like a neck injury.' Would that have been so hard?

Cut bait Peyton. For all you did for Irsay, you at least deserved to hear the truth. Here's hoping Manning goes to a team on the Colts' schedule next year.

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    In this file photo, Georgia's Thomas Brown celebrates after the Bulldogs defeated Auburn 45-20. The former running back was hired by the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga as the new running backs coach.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

This and that

— UTC added a running back coach as our Mocs football ace John Frierson tells everyone here (UTC hires ex-UGA running back Thomas Brown). As for our limited interaction with Thomas Brown — and with our UGA ace David Paschall's extended experiences with Brown during his playing days with the Bulldogs — we consider this a very, Very, VERY strong addition. Brown routinely one of Georgia's hardest workers, on the field and in the weight room. Plus, he was well-reviewed by his coaches. And as a hidden bonus, Brown prepped at Tucker High School in the recruiting-rich metro-Atlanta area.

— Speaking of UTC football, receivers coach Will Healy was on with the guys at SportTalk on Tuesday afternoon, and the excitement from Healy was evident. Something may be brewing at Finley Stadium this year.

— West Virginia has been freed from the Big East and will play in the Big 12 next year. It only cost the Mountaineers $20 million to get out of the threat of legal action from the Big East. (And yes, the 'only' was quite sarcastic.) That said, the Big 12 did fork over $9 million to the Mountaineers to help with the transaction. We may not be the smartest 5-at-10 at the lunch table, but our Pop frequently noted that if someone is paying you to come to the party, you're not really invited. Plus, as the 5-at-10's Pop's Pop would note, "if you look around the poker table and don't know who the sucker is, it's you."

— If you're anything like the 5-at-10, you are so tired of steroids stories that they make your eyes go glossy. Well, it's obviously a bigger problem than we may know. Accoridn got this story (Goat fails drug test, is disqualified from state fair competition) a goat was disqualified from the Colorado state fair because it tested positive for an illegal substance. Sweet buckets of Lance Armstrong's urine sample, if we can't have a stately and fair competition at the livestock state fair, then the terrorists have won.

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    Comedian Chris Farley, new cast member of NBC's "Saturday Night Live" is shown on Sept. 18, 1990. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

Today's question

Chris Farley was born on this 48 years ago. Farley, the comedy star of SNL and "Tommy Boy," died in late 1997 of a drug overdose.

There are far too many people that die before their time, even those that are self-induced, whether directly or indirectly.

Whitney Houston died last weekend and now her greatest hits are dominating album sales and iTune downloads.

Farley, not unlike heavy comedy heavyweights John Candy and John Belushi before him, had become a bankable star despite battling drug problems. In fact, after one good movie — "Tommy Boy" — and a slew of bad ones, Farley was cast in a role that would have catapulted him back to stardom before his death. Farley was going to do the voice of "Shrek," a role and a project that has become a nine-figure enterprise. There was also talk that

As for the question, well, know that "Tommy Boy" ranks really high on the 5-at-10's list of rewatchable comedies, and it's fair to say we've seen in more than 10 times — "Does this suit make me look fat?"... "No, your face does." — and it's a member of the must-stop movie stall of fame (meaning that if it's on when we're roaming channels, we're stopping, even to the chagrin of the Mrs. 5-at-10).

What's your most rewatchable comedy (you can have a top five — and believe us that this is way, Way, WAY tougher than you think)?

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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Livn4life said...

I begin by saying GO VOLS and MOCS. I love em both and they have had some tough times this year in bb. For the Love of Hammering the final nail in the broken Colt horseshoe and relegating them to an also ran NFL team for the next 5 or so years; Irsay. Is it the fans are not suppose to blame you or you deserve a bunch of blame for the Peyton/Luck Sweapsteaks? I am confused. Next: Well about no. 17 for the Knics, he's just (L)in the Zone no matter how you dribble it. His heretofore accomplishments are slam dunks(eventhoughhedoesn'tdothat). More power to him. A.I.-we should have known there'd be trouble when it was revealed that his financial advisor is FRAN CHISE. Excellent choice for the MOCS having Thomas(let'smakeemhardtobringdown)Brown as RB coach. Finally,it is sad, the demise of Belushi,Candy,and Farley, not to mention Whitney and so many others we have loved. As for favorite laughers. My top one goes to...Chevy Chase and the Christmas Vacation gang. I still crack up when thinking of Cousin Eddie and all the cracks surrounding him. Speaking of Cracks, the real Eddie, Randy Quaid and his wife/grillfriend, did I just type grillfriend? I mean girlfriend,or whatever, are really...well...out there Clark! Everyone have a great sports day.

February 15, 2012 at 10:58 a.m.
Blueoval said...

Totally agree with Christmas Vacation, I would also have to add Caddyshack, Fletch and Elf.

February 15, 2012 at 11:22 a.m.
jgreeson said...

Livin(large) —

Great start to the day. "No matter how your dribble it," is a quality line. Well-played indeed.

The Mocs and Vols have had some up and down moments to be sure.

Irsay needs to stop the spin. Spit some truth or get off the pot.

Christmas Vacation is a OUT-standing call, in fact, its one of our holiday traditions to watch it every season.

"Yeah, it sure does. But, don't you go falling in love with it now, because, we're taking it with us when we leave here next month."

Oval —

Caddyshack is hard to ignore and Fletch is money. Only watched Elf once, we may need to give it another spin.

— 5-at-10

February 15, 2012 at 11:46 a.m.
BIspy4 said...

Top 5 rewatchable comedies...

Animal House. They can't do that to our pledges.

Caddyshack. Now I know why tigers eat their young.

(and now two choices that aren't gutbusting funny but fit the genre)

Ferris Bueller's Day Off.

Fast Times at Ridgemont High. Hey ... this is great iced tea.

And I could go Bull Durham (William Blake. William Blake? William Blake.)

But I think I'll go...

Raising Arizona. It sure ain't Ozzie and Harriett.

Just ahead of Smokey and the Bandit.

February 15, 2012 at 11:56 a.m.
jgreeson said...

Spy —

That's a great list. Seriously great.

When we sat down to try to come up with just five, Animal House (Wait til Otis sees us. He loves us.) and Caddyshack ("That's the worst looking hat I ever saw. What? When you buy a hat like this I bet they give you a free bowl of soup. Huh? Oh, looks good on you though.") were the first two that came to mind.

— 5-at-10

February 15, 2012 at 11:59 a.m.
chas9 said...

Not sure whose fault it is, but yes, the Peyton Place soap opera is stale, kinda like the Favre endless drama.

On The Vols' chances, today's discussion and updating anybody who missed yesterday's late afternoon show, I'll stay with my prediction of two more regular season losses. But not with any confidence, since Bama's suspension of key players vastly improves Tennessee's chances in one game they were likely to lose. If Martin's mighty men do finish with only one more loss, it'll be a heckuva story, and I'd invite any 10-6 SEC team to dance, if I were czar of The Big Dance. If they win out, I'd even root for them (up until whenever they face Big Blue).

Surprisingly, Tennessee has an excellent chance of a 5 seed in the SEC tournament, and a realistic shot at a 4 seed. A 5 seed might be better, since they'd get to play a gimme first round game against SC, thus boosting their win total by one. That wouldn't do much for their RPI, though.

February 15, 2012 at 12:04 p.m.
chas9 said...

Five I can't resist: 1. Raising Arizona; 2. The Blues Brothers; 3. Bull Durham; 4. Ferris Bueller; 5. Groundhog Day

Five I'll watch if I happen to catch them in the right scene: 1. Trading Places; 2. Coming to America; 3. Thelma and Louise; 4. 9 to 5; 5. Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure

Five I'll watch if I'm halfway to plastered: 1. Back to School; 2. The Jerk; 3. Airport; 4. Overboard; 5. Edward Scissorhands

Elf and Christmas Vacation only in December.

February 15, 2012 at 12:38 p.m.
jomo11 said...

Jay- still think the Vols losses against Austin Peay, Oakland and College of Charleston would burst their NCAA bubble even if they do finish 10-6 in conference. they will be in the NIT , since that is all about money, and an 18,000 seat arena we help

February 15, 2012 at 1:07 p.m.
BIspy4 said...

Oh Great 5, Same here, pardner, same here. Top two lottery picks were Caddyshack and Animal House.

May we dance with your dates?

February 15, 2012 at 1:37 p.m.
jgreeson said...

9er —

Wow, great categories. Well played. Five is pretty tough, and we're with you on some that are at the right scene are way, Way, WAY better than others. (In fact, we'd put Bull Durham in that category since the last 30 minutes don't exist other than Ebby looking at that reporter and saying, "Raye Anne, right? That's a beautiful name. Is that Greek? That Raye Anne. I don't know. It's a beautiful name, though. There's a great song by Motley Crue. Do you know it? Raye Anne, she's a stayin'. Anyway, a good friend of mine used to say, 'This is a very simple game. You throw the ball, you catch the ball. You hit the ball. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. Sometimes it rains.' Think about that for a while."

As for your plastered list (not that there's anything wrong with that) — Love the Jerk. And Back to School and Overboard have been getting some quality air time here of late.

Our halfway to plastered list (not that there's anything wrong with that) would be dominated by Will Farrell — Old School, Burgandy, Ricky Bobby, Wedding Crashers, et al.

Jomo —

We agree that 10-6 likely won't be enough for the Vols to get an NCAA bid, unless they get to the SEC tournament finals (or play UK tight as nails in the semifinal if that's how it plays out).

And no doubt the NIT is wearing a Vols hat right now, considering that a first-year coach and a young team are overachieving to the point that they would be excited with an NIT bid and the games could be played in front of 18,000-plus.

— 5-at-10

February 15, 2012 at 1:38 p.m.
Livn4life said...

Gang with all the unfun which has surrounded Rocky Top this year in multi-sports, an NIT bid would not be the worse thing in the world. I see them losing 2 more but hope for better.

February 15, 2012 at 2:03 p.m.
fechancellor said...

10 Ring, here's my 2 Cents worth. 1)Animal House, 2) A Shot in the Dark, 3) Casino Royale, 4)Stripes, 5) Harlem Nights.

As for Mr. Manning, Tom Brady's salary last year was $10 Million augmented with an additional $5 million advertisements. Is there a roster bonus in the future, I can't say. Gisele brought in 45 million. Source, Forbes.

Brady money should be good enough for anyone at the QB position, while Manning can still continue with his endorsement career, which is leaps and bounds more lucrative than Brady's.

February 15, 2012 at 2:09 p.m.
chas9 said...

Stupid, stupid, STUPID omission: A Fish Called Wanda!

Do't call me stupid.

To call you stupid would be an insult to stupid people. I've known sheep that could outwit you. I've worn dresses with higher IQ's!

I'm n-n-n...

February 15, 2012 at 2:25 p.m.
LaughingBoy said...

Comedies (random order), The Big Lebowski, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Zombie Land, Tropic Thunder, Clerks, Plan 9 From Outer Space (unintentional comedy), Blazing Saddles, Airplane, Top Secret, Shaun of the Dead, Hobgoblins (another that's so bad, it's good. Try to find the Mystery Science Theater 3000 version).

I'm in Lin overload at the moment. I like watching him play but I'd would rather watch paint dry than listen to SportsCenter commentators gush on about him.

It's funny some of the college league commissioners are stressing over realignment and teams switching when a football playoff could have possibly prevented most or all of it.

February 15, 2012 at 3:27 p.m.
jgreeson said...

Livin (Large) —

Agreed. Anything that has postseason on it for the Vols would be a success. And if the 5-at-10 had an SEC coach of the year vote, it'd be for The Conz.

FE to the C —

Nice research. Gisele brought in $45 million? Wow. Just wow.

9er —

No harm no foul. Fish is very rewatchable and holds up well today.

LaughingBoy —

Wow, can't believe it's taken this long to get to Blazing Saddles. Well done.

Fair point about the playoffs.

Exile —

This is OUT-standing news for the National Football League and the fans of the National Football League who like to watch National Football League players make National Football League plays on Monday night football.

Wow, Exile, thanks. This is high times indeed.

— 5-at-10

February 15, 2012 at 5:11 p.m.
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February 15, 2012 at 9:08 p.m.
BIspy4 said...

Forgot all about Blazing Saddles (... and they was right!), plus The Big Lebowski (it tied the room together) and Monty Python and the Holy Grail (when danger reared its ugly head, Brave Sir Robin turned and fled).

Where, oh where, is Office Space?

Um, nice list, um, there, um, liniinn. Yeahh.

February 16, 2012 at 12:54 a.m.
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