published Friday, October 4th, 2013

5-at-10: Friday mailbag on Tennessee, playoff baseball, kids movies and SEC QB Draft board

Before we get started the overwhelming question — we got about 50 from social media, e-mail, phone calls, what have you — has been about Press Row, our radio endeavor with David Paschall on 105.1 FM. We are currently in a brief hiatus that could be temporary or it could be permanent. We'll update when we know more, which could be as soon as today. Either way, it was a lot of fun doing the show because of the people — Paschall, Wells and the ESPN folks, and especially the callers — and we hope it works out.

And thanks to everyone for the support and the kind words.

On to the mailbag, where we hope to connect more than the Braves, who despite leaving Danny Struggla off the postseason roster struck out 15 times in a 6-1 Game 1 loss to the Dodgers. Hey, the Braves made a habit of Uggla-ing (striking out swinging) and Upton-ing (striking out looking) throughout the regular season and were tied with the Mets for the most U's (K's) in the league. But in the playoffs, not really that effective.

From the "Talks too much" studios, a karate man bruises on the the inside — they don't show their weakness.

  • photo
    Tennessee coach Butch Jones tries to motivate his team during pre-game warm-ups.
    Photo by Patrick Smith /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

From Todd

I follow your picks pretty close and I have to say that you are flat on fire for the last couple of years. It's been pretty amazing -- and thanks, the extra entertainment is nice.

But something scares me about UGA-UT this week. Aren't you a little scared that everybody and their brother loves UGA?

I know you picked Georgia, but how can the Vols keep this one close?

Thanks and thanks for the 5-at-10

— and —

From Chas9

If the nationwide line is 10.5 and locally it's 14, does that mean our locals have lost more confidence in UT than reality would dictate? (I'd take Gawga minus 14, for what it's worth.)

Todd and 9er —

Let's take the second part first. 9er, a bloated line does not mean lost confidence. It means too money on one side or the other. As of now there has been little movement of the UGA-UT line nationally — it's staying at the 10.5- to 11-point range — but we're hearing local entertainment entrepreneurs have it closer to 13 and rising.

Todd, we're going to need a minute — we have a slew of meetings this morning — but we'll be back with a couple of scenarios of how the Vols can make this can tight. Didn't want to short-change this one because of the possibilities.

To the rest of the mailbag, and back with Todd's answer in a few moments.

———

From SS

You mention the little 5@10s every now and then. I have two kids about the same age.

What's yours favorite TV show or movie? Better yet, what's your favorite show of theirs. Man some of this stuff is bad.

Thanks for the 5@10 and hope to hear you on the radio again.

SS —

Excellent question, and our all-time favorite Disney movie is still more than likely The Lion King.

But man, how far has the Disney stuff come. From Lion King to Toy Story to Cars to Despicable Me, the stuff is nuts.

The 5-at-10 tots are more iPad nuts than TV nuts, which is good. And bad. Who knows, right?

And they shuffle through TV show pretty quickly, whether it's Curious George or Paw Patrol or Clifford or what ever is the cartoon du jour (hmmm sounds good, think I'll have that).

As for our favorites of theirs, well, Phineas and Ferb on Disney is excellent. It was created by two cats who met working on The Simpsons and hatched a plan to have a Family Guy-type show for the entire family. It's well done. There are some others, and the Cars movie is top-shelf and popular as well.

As for the least favorite, it's without question Caillou. (We have been blessed to avoid the purple dinosaur and a slew of other signing and dancing halloween characters. Knock on wood.)

————

From A fan

I love playoff baseball. It's awesome.

What's your Rushmore of favorite playoff baseball moments?

Thanks and you talk too much. I always wanted to say that.

A fan —

Playoff baseball is awesome, and it is because of the intensity and the drama.

Those emotions are magnified in large part by the fact that we have just watched the six-month slow dance that is the baseball regular season. Now, it's time to tango.

Our Rushmore of favorite playoff baseball moments has a clear and distinct No. 1 — Gibson going deep off Eckersley in Game 1 of the 1988 World Series. (Funny thing, knowing the regulars on this board, there will be a slew of Sid Slides and the Red Sox finally winning as those people's clear No. 1s.)

Our others are Sid's slide when the Braves beat the Pirates in Game 7 of the NLCS in '92, Wohlers giving up the homer to Jim Leyritz in '96 and W throwing out the first pitch of Game 3 of the World Series in 2001 after the 9/11 attacks and piping a strike down the middle.

Strange list, no? What's on yours?

————

From Patrick

I can't remember a time when there were this many excellent SEC QBs, can you?

Also, I heard you like the draft, so if you had to draft the SEC quarterbacks of the last 20 years, what's your draft board look like?

Thanks.

Patrick —

Excellent question, and you have heard correctly, we love the draft — you know this.

This group of current SEC QBs is extraordinary, and that fact magnifies the hole some teams have at quarterback. (Talking about you Tennessee and you too Kentucky.)

Look around the league right now, and South Carolina (Shaw and Thompson), Florida (the injured Driskel and Murphy) and Mississippi State (Prescott and Russell) for sure have two quarterbacks on their roster that would be starting in Knoxville. And that's not even counting the M-and-M boys of Manziel, Murray, Mettenberger and McCarron. Good times.

As for the draft board, well, we're going to give you three top-five draft boards since there are three styles of offenses that have been littered about the league since the early 1990s. These lists are based on combination of college skill set and college success. Peyton Manning will be undervalued in some of your eyes. So it goes.

Pro-style offense

1) AJ McCarron (say what you want, but dude is about to win his third national title as a starter)

2) David Greene

3) Peyton Manning

4) Aaron Murray

5) Jay Barker

Passing spread

1) Danny Wuerffel

2) Rex Grossman

3) Tim Couch

4) Eli Manning

5) Chris Leak

True spread

1) Cam Newton

2) Tim Tebow

3) Johnny Football

4) Heath Shuler

5) Dameyune Craig

We're sure we're missing some. Thoughts?

————

From the 5-at-10 to our loyal readers

We asked this late Thursday, but thought it was worth a re-run if you are so inclined: Which SEC coach would be the best drinking buddy other than Spurrier? We say Franklin followed closely by Jones and Bielema. And the all-time leaders would be Johnny Majors and Pat Dye.

Which would be the worst other than Saban?

Which would be the best DD? Easy — Richt.

Discuss — and is it possible Les Miles could be on all three lists?

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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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.
rdc919 said...

Saban wouldn't be a good drinking buddy because he doesn't drink.

October 4, 2013 at 10:55 a.m.
chas9 said...

The all-time list of jello-shot-slurping buddy coaches has to include all-star Mike Price. The Bear would be great, even if we have to dig him up and prop him up. Arkansas' boiled lobster could be the best and worst. Bill Curry would be a reliable DD.

Your starting five of basketball coaches would be all-UK: The Ruppster, Joe Hall, Eddie Sutton, Billy the Kid, Rick Pitino. Bruce the Pearl would be a strong thirsty sixth man. You just have to get him to keep his shirt late in the evening.

October 4, 2013 at 11:05 a.m.
mcpell3 said...

Re: drinking lists - Where would you put the Bear?

What is your feel on the Auburn Ole Miss game? My guess is Auburn's home field advantage plays a big part & they squeak by again.

October 4, 2013 at 11:09 a.m.
WilliamRscott said...

baylor is listed # 1 in today's T-FP Area Prep Poll; its only loss to # 2 MBA. McCALLIE is listed at # 7; its 3 losses to Siegel [#5 in 6A by 3], Bowling Green [#1 in KY 5A by 4], and # 1 Ensworth by 14. Yet 6 of the 8 HS FB Prediction Panel pick the BIG BLUE to beat the little red tonight (?) ... Who ya got? ... This red-neck preppy thinks it's time that one streak ends and another one starts!

Billy-In-Brainerd

October 4, 2013 at 11:40 a.m.
chas9 said...

Looks like I got some 'splainin' to do, Lucy. Jay, show me where my logic is flawed.

The oddsmakers are unbiased, they just want to make money. As you've pointed out, their lines are often right on.

But their objective isn't to hit the victory margin, rather it's to get the entertainment laid on each side of the proposition equal.

So a team like Notre Dame that has a large national fan base might have its partisans looking at The Irish through rose colored glasses and thinking their team is more likely to beat the spread than it is in objective reality. So if the South Bend boys are objectively 13 points better than their opponent, but most bets are being laid on ND to cover, the oddsmakers have to move it to 14 (or more) to even out the entertainment laid on each team.

I'd assume that within 150 miles of Tuscaloosa and Athens and Knoxville you have a higher concentration of bettors who are partisans of The Tide and The Dawgs and The Vowels than in the world as a whole. So if any one of these teams is a 10 point dog nationwide, the local fans would (unobjectively) love their home team to beat the spread, so the local bookie would get too much entertainment bet on the local team. To even things out, he's got to give the local team fewer points. That's in normal times when the fans love their local team.

Conversely, if the local bookie has to set the line at 13 or 14 to get the local entertainment even on each side of the proposition, it must mean the locals have a lower opinion of their boys than the world as a whole does. In other words, East Tennesseans have too little faith, if Vegas is smart. And Vegas is.

October 4, 2013 at 12:14 p.m.
chas9 said...

Is Darrell The Scenic City's longest tenured TV sports guy? Remember the days he wore a 'fro? Not his best look, but there's still some video out there if you missed it. He's good and will be missed.

October 4, 2013 at 12:19 p.m.
jgreeson said...

9er —

Your analysis is spot-on about the lines and the rose-colored glasses, especially Notre Dame, which is consistently bad against the spread because of heightened lines and expectations. Same for the Cowboys a lot of the time, too.

Our views differ on the Vols, however, because it's not the local fans that are moving the lines, it's the local entertainment brokers. And the only tint to their loyalty is green — as in cash.

A good local bookie — at least it's been our view/experience — re-sets lines, especially on local teams, on expectations and buzz. So there's that too.

Even if the local money was flooding in on UGA for tomorrow — even from UT fans — that's not a solid indicator that folks have given up on Butch. Put it this way, we are 100 percent on the Gus Bus, but if Alabama rolled into Auburn on Saturday only giving the Tigers 10.5, we would be racing to Regions to clear out the entertainment savings to enjoy an early retirement.

And yes, tip of raccoon cap to Mr. Patterson.

If we do the hoops drinking buddies, Larry Eustachy needs to be invited. Dude was hanging out at fraternity parties at Iowa State.

BiB —

We were set on McCallie winning, but the vandalism could be a motivating factor. We'll see.

We'll set that number at McCallie minus-2.

McPell —

The Bear could put you under the table no doubt.

As for the Tigers, do not have a good vibe for some reason. For Auburn to win Nick Marshall's going to have to play a whole game rather than a good half and a bad half.

RDC —

That may be. But he's also pretty ornery, too.

October 4, 2013 at 1:07 p.m.
mcpell3 said...

5 - I agree that Marshall needs to produce for a full game, not just a half. I think the bye week will show results, like a faster tempo on offense.

October 4, 2013 at 1:21 p.m.
LaughingBoy said...

Caillou is the the cole slaw of kids' edutainment.

I'd take Georgia (10.5) in a heartbeat. I can see a 41-10 Dawg win, and a spiral into the abyss by the Vols-no bowl, recruits changing their minds, and a whole lotta' handwringing by the coach's (soon to be former?) supporters. The USA game was one of the most pitiful performances I've ever had the misfortune to witness, and tickets could literally not be given away.

Maybe the vandalism was a ploy by Baylor folks to fire up their own team. Who knows.

Where is Tyler Bray on the list of SEC Quarterbacks?

October 4, 2013 at 1:25 p.m.
BIspy4 said...

Rushmore of playoff baseball? You might be surprised, 5.

Javy Lopez HR off Mark Portugal in 95.

Gene Tenace vs the Reds in 72

George Brett HR at Yankee Stadium

Fisk in Game 6 ( and my brother, who is a man of cloth reminds me of two things on a weekly basis - he's played Augusta National and I haven't and I fell asleep just before the start of the bottom of the 12th of Game 6 in 75)

There's a tie atop the list. You can figure if out.

Lets see, the Braves still have to face Greinke before going to LA? Yeah, this series is not coming back to Atlanta. Can't figure out what's more over - the series or Struggla's time in ATL?

October 4, 2013 at 1:45 p.m.
jgreeson said...

McPell —

The pace of the Ole Miss-AU game could be break-neck. In fact, here's saying at least once we come back from a commercial and they are already going.

LB —

You think the vandalism ploy from "Best of Times" (underrated movie with Kurt Russell and Robin Williams — "Show 'em the teeth") could be at work here?

As for back tat Bray, well, let's just say that the lists above were not misprints and Bray's exactly where Bray belongs in terms of college legacy. Now if we had a "pro-style bottle throwing" list, he'd be tops on that board.

Spy —

As for the question, about the series or Struggla's stay in the A-T-L, well, they are very similar. Won't last long, hard to watch and filled with strikouts.

Oh yeah, have we mentioned lately that we've played Augusta National twice?

October 4, 2013 at 1:59 p.m.
jgreeson said...

And Spy —

Dave Roberts' steal in Game 4 of the '04 ALCS is not on your list?

That's the one we would have bet heavily on for you die-hard Red Soxers.

October 4, 2013 at 2 p.m.
chas9 said...

Sid's slide sits atop my Rushmore, too.

In the pits of worst moments is the classic 1991 Braves-Twins Series, which the Twins only won because of the peculiarities of the crappy Metrodome. Seventh game, Black Jack Morris and John Smoltz duel to 0-0 in nine, Twins win on 10th inning hit off reliever Pena over the shallow Bravos outfielders. And Kirby Puckett's still fat.

October 4, 2013 at 2:26 p.m.
Walden said...

Unfortunately for McCallie, the vandalism ploy is not the case. 2 McCallie boys have been permanently expelled and there were more involved. As an alum, I am deeply embarrassed for the Blue.

October 4, 2013 at 2:28 p.m.
Walden said...

Baylor considered cancelling the game. Think there's gonna be a little tension in the air at Heywood tonight? I wouldn't go if you paid me.

October 4, 2013 at 2:39 p.m.
WilliamRscott said...

Walden: I concur on all points. Back in '75, yours truly and a former Congressman [among others] got into a little trouble the week of the Big Game. We put Blue ty-d-bol in the outside fountains at the girls school. E-class for a week.

Billy-In-Brainerd

October 4, 2013 at 2:54 p.m.
Walden said...

WilliamR - I remember that story!

October 4, 2013 at 2:55 p.m.
jgreeson said...

9er —

Doubt Kirby's fat. He's dead.

Kent Hrbek, however, is still an oaf.

Walden/BiB —

Seems to be some spirit in the air. And maybe some spirits, too.

Giddy up.

October 4, 2013 at 3:03 p.m.
Walden said...

Jay - maybe so, but we all know that teenage boys don't need alcohol to be stupid. It comes with the turf. If you unzip their pants, their brains might fall out.

October 4, 2013 at 3:06 p.m.
GratefulDawg said...

I am not making the trip to Knoxville tomorrow so this will be the first time this season for me watching Verne and Gary work their magic on CBS. Given Verne's propensity to butcher the names of players, I think Georgia could score a big play when quarterback Amos Murphy connects with Justin Wilkes-Booth. To their credit, Verne and Gary never interrupt the coverage of the game to show you video of them eating cheeseburgers at some local establishment. Yes, I'm looking at you Todd Blackledge.

October 4, 2013 at 3:08 p.m.
chas9 said...

Hrbek's an oaf and fat, too. And Kirby's still fat. He was embalmed that way.

My remark about Johnnyvolsfan having little confidence wasn't meant to be longterm or to slander Butch. I just guess right now Big Orange Nation lacks confidence. But you're right that our locals are surely impressed with The Hairy Dawgs.

I'm down to stems and seeds.

How is McCallie spraypainting the Baylor campus news before the annual clash of the titans? Isn't that a dog bites man kind of thing?

October 4, 2013 at 3:17 p.m.
WilliamRscott said...

C-Niner: Kind of like you, this BillyVolsFan is looking forward to hoops...I will hang up and listen...

Billy-In-Brainerd

October 4, 2013 at 3:32 p.m.
chas9 said...

BIB--You forgot "Go, Vols!"

October 4, 2013 at 4:11 p.m.
Walden said...

Smoke them stems and seeds Chas! Sometimes works.

Oh yeah, Go Vols!

October 4, 2013 at 4:33 p.m.
BIspy4 said...

5, wanted to go a little off the beam (with a small b. Not a big B, as in Beam because the Spy still loves him some Beam and Coke, since Mr. Daniel does not make airplane bottles to buy at the "store" with which to "flavor" a stadium Co-coler on a Saturday afternoon. Where was I? Oh, yeah).

I take Big Papi's game winning knock and dinger in games 4 and 5 over the Roberts steal.

October 4, 2013 at 4:39 p.m.
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