published Thursday, July 17th, 2014

5-at-10: SEC media daze, Tiger's fast start, and big questions

From the satellite offices of the "Talks too much" studios, let the games begin.

SEC media daze

Shhhh, we're about to wrap the SEC media days. Three days in the book. One monster day left.

Nick Saban and the rolling rock show that follows the Tide lands here today. How big are we expecting it to be today? Fans are already lined up in the lobby and two security guards have stopped by wondering what time Saban is scheduled to appear.

He's scheduled at noon. Noon, and people are lining up and jockeying for position before 7 a.m. local time.

That said, today figures to be a blur. In addition to Saban, there will be Georgia, Ole Miss and Kentucky. We will have the predictions. We're dealing with a lot of stuff. Candelsticks.

We had a slew of big names on Press Row on Wednesday, ranging from Steve Shaw, the head of SEC officials, to Justin Connolly, the ESPN poobah over the SEC Network, to Bill Hancock, the executive director of the college football playoff.

Hancock, in particular was excellent and if you missed it, we may replay it on Friday and we'll run it as a Q-and-A in Sunday's Times Free Press.

As for news of today, here's the order of prediction we submitted for how we think the teams will finish the SEC:

EAST

South Carolina

Georgia

Florida

Missouri

Tennessee

Vandy

Kentucky

WEST

Alabama

Auburn

LSU

Mississippi

Miss. State

Texas A&M

Arkansas

With Alabama as my guess as the SEC champ.

————

Tiger starts quickly

We have high hopes for the British Open. We want it to be entertaining.

Thursday got off to a golden start with Tiger Woods making birdie on Nos. 11, 12 and 13 — he rolled in a putt from off the green on the 11th — to get to red numbers.

He finished at 3-under 69, and while we have high hopes, those hopes have to be tempered by the simple fact that Woods has not shot a s sub-par round since March. And yes, it felt weird even typing those words together.

There were a handful of familiar names moving to the top of the leaderboard early Thursday morning, including Rory McIlroy's torrid 6-under 66. That's great news.

————

The Conz speaks

Counzo Martin, the current Cal basketball coach, spoke to CBSSports.com about leaving the Tennessee Vols in a sudden and shocking day in April. Well, apparently shocking to those outside the program.

"Jordan McRae, Jarnell Stokes, they were all like, 'Coach, you gotta get out of here,' " Martin told Gary Parrish. "The guys were like, 'It's time to roll.' And it wastime. I think everybody knew that."

Here's the story.

Interesting stuff indeed.

————

This and that

Keep an eye out for our TFP golf ace David Uchiyama's excellent coverage from the Honors this week.

The ESPYs were actually fairly entertaining last night, at least the parts we saw were. Also, we're not a fan of his professionally, but nothing but huge respect for Stuart Scott's battle against cancer and his great speech last night. Well-played indeed.

A book claims that Texas was willing to offer Nick Saban a $100 million contract. CUH-razy.

————

Today's questions

We have plenty.

Have you sent a mailbag question?

Who do you think will win the SEC?

Will Tiger win another major?

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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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.
jomo11 said...

Your SEC picks look about spot on, except dont see UTK over Vandy, especially with UTK's glaring weakness at QB. . . . .what did you find out about watchESPN app IF comcast does not sign a deal with SEC network ?

July 17, 2014 at 10:20 a.m.
jgreeson said...

Jomo —

Justin Connolly said he believed the app would be available regardless of the internet provider. But he was quick to point out that until the contracts are signed anything can happen.

Thanks for the question.

July 17, 2014 at 10:26 a.m.
MocTastic said...

Why do all these people, ie the fans, go to the media days? Do they not have a life? They need to find one.

July 17, 2014 at 12:31 p.m.
Stewwie said...

Jay, what are your thoughts on the NBA's latest proposal to modify the draft lottery to help discourage teams from tanking? What changes (if any) would you recommend if you don't agree with this proposal? See the link below for info on the proposal:

http://grantland.com/the-triangle/nba-lottery-reform-is-coming/

July 17, 2014 at 1:47 p.m.
MocTastic said...

Stewwie, how about reversing logic and let the best record of the "lottery teams" get first pic, second best gets second pick etc. Then teams will try to win every game they can to get the best possible draft pick, instead of tanking games to get the best player. The playoff teams would pick in current order, worse team first after the the bottom teams pick.

July 17, 2014 at 1:59 p.m.
DCrotty22 said...

Tiger will not win but he will have a good weekend. I'm guessing a finish of 5th or so. I'm sticking with my Adam Scott pick after round 1.

July 17, 2014 at 2:36 p.m.
Stewwie said...

MT, the concern with that idea is that bubble playoff teams would then be the ones tanking down the stretch. This past season, I bet that the Bobcats would have happily tanked their last few games to get the top pick in the draft instead of having to endure a sweep against the Heat in the first round.

And the tanking would not have to be obvious. But it could easily be done in the most subtle ways. Short and/or lazy practices, less accountability with players and their performance, lack of serious strategy, and taking "extra caution" with injuries to key players and hold them out longer than needed.

July 17, 2014 at 3:10 p.m.
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