5-at-10: Friday Mailbag

5-at-10: Friday Mailbag

July 13th, 2012 by Jay Greeson in Sports - Columns

From CelticVol

Hey 5@10,

Tennessee coach Derek Dooley walks the sidelines during the first half of an NCAA college football game with Arkansas in Fayetteville, Ark., Saturday, Nov. 12, 2011. (AP Photo/April L. Brown)

What do you think Derek Dooley is doing right now? Is he in the witness protection program? Is he holed up in a bunker somewhere watching game film? Is he in Jalen Ramsey's living room making a final pitch to get him to come to UT? It's like he goes into hiding from the end of February until fall camp. This guy has one of the best personalities in all of college football and nobody ever gets to see or hear him. If I'm the UT athletic department I'm calling ESPN and setting up appointments with Mike & Mike, Scott Van Pelt, etc. etc. What are your thoughts?

P.S. Please somebody in the NBA accept a trade for Dwight Howard. I'm soooo sick of the Howard trade talk.

CelticVol,

We agree that Dooley has a big-time personality and rarely does not win an interview. He will need that skill next week, when the pressure on Dooley and his Vols figures to be one of the main themes at the SEC media days.

As for Dooley's offseason schedule since April, here's what we can view it as:

- Wrap up spring practice, interviews and such. (Check.)

- Call Hutchinson Community College and make sure Cordarrelle is doing well.

- Call Vonn Bell and let him know we saw his DVD.

- Make sure everyone is ready for finals.

- Pray that everyone important passes their finals.

- Call Hutchinson Community College and make sure Cordarrelle is doing well.

- Take the family to the beach during the recruiting dead period.

- Recruit like nuts and try and convince Jalen that USC is where evil lives.

- Practice answering questions about "Hot seat" and "Pressure" and "Expectations."

- Call Cordarrelle just to say hello.

- Go to the SEC meetings.

And yes, the Dwight Howard storyline at this point is about as exciting watching grass dry. Want an interesting view of that debacle? Someone get Stan Van Gundy on the phone.

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From wannabe33

Did you see that Rueben Foster flipped his commitment from Alabama to Auburn? Something doesn't smell right. Wait and see, your Auburn buddies are going down on this one.

Wannabe,

We've never been into the conspiracy theories about this recruit or that recruit or he's getting paid and whatever.

Plus, we've never been one to put too much stock in the verbal commitments of 17- and 18-year-old kids. They change far too often.

That said, the recruitment of Rueben Foster, the No. 1 linebacker in the country and ranked as high as the No. 2 player in the country has been interesting for a while.

Foster was at Troup County High School in Georgia through his junior season before his coach was fired. Troup County High is about as far from Auburn as Dalton is from Chattanooga. After his coach was dismissed, Foster transferred to Auburn High School, where he joined the football team that included the sons of Auburn assistants Curtis Luper and Trooper Taylor.

After being committed to Alabama for more than a year, Foster switched to Auburn on Thursday in a ceremony that included having his daughter dressed in an Auburn cheerleading uniform.

And here's where it gets strange. (And yes, we know that all of the previous stuff could count as strange, but hold on.)

We had several folks send us this, and we're passing it along. Remember last year when Auburn had the verbal pledge of in-state five-star running back T.J. Yeldon before he switched to Alabama at the 11th hour, well here's what he said at his announcement of his decision to pick Alabama:

"Over the last few weeks, I've really put a lot of time and thought into where I want to go to school and continue my football career. I am blessed to be in a situation where I have several great opportunities and I appreciate everyone involved who has helped me get to this point."

"I want to make an announcement so I can put this behind me and get to work on the things I need to do to prepare for college both athletically and academically. I am going to enroll at the University of Alabama in January.

"I have a lot of respect for Auburn, the coaches, and all of the people there, but at the end of the day I feel like the University of Alabama is the best situation and fit for me and my family. I am 100 percent confident with my final decision. I feel great about it and I'm excited to get started."

This is what Foster said Thursday:

"Over the last few weeks I've really put a lot of thought and time into where I will play football," Foster said at a press conference at his high school. "I want to make an announcement so I can put this behind me and get in all the work I need to do for high school and to get better for college both academically and athletically. I am going to enroll at Auburn University."

"I have a lot of respect for Alabama and the coaches and all of the other people and fans," Foster said. "At the end of the day, I feel Auburn University is the place for me and my family and I am 100 percent confident in my final decision. I feel great about my decision and I'm excited to get started."

Here's saying that's not a coincidence.

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From Jefe,

It's almost here. You can feel it, can't you? The SEC media days mean the light at the end of the summer tunnel is there and we are going to talk football.

Thankfully.

OK, 5er, we know there will be a host of questions about replacing this starter or that reserve or who is going to "step up" and which team has the best kicking game. That's OK because at least we're talking football, right?

In the 5@10's style, what are the five questions that will never see the light of day this week at media days?

Jefe,

Such a good question. You guys really brought it this week. We can kind of feel the change - maybe it was the rain and the cooler temps in the greater Chatta-Vegas area. Maybe it was the thought of football on the immediate horizon. Who knows?

The storylines this week in Hoover, Ala., will be direct and newsworthy. There's the playoff system to discuss. There's the drive for the league to win its seventh national title in a row. There's the Paterno fall-out. Basically, we're dealing with a lot of stuff... (Candlesticks make a nice gift; maybe find out where they are registered and get them a place-setting. Let's get two.)

That said, you did not ask for the storylines. You asked for the questions that will not see the light of day. OK, here we go.

1) Coach Saban, when is the next Phi Mu event?

2) Coach Chizik, how is Cecil Newton's church doing?

3) Coach John L. Smith, have you visited other athletic programs at Arkansas, primarily the volleyball team?

4) Coach Joker Phillips, have you sent out any resumes yet as a pro-active move?

5) Coach Dooley, your hair is awesome. Gel or foam?

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From ChattanoogaVol

The Braves trade for Mark Texiera (who lasted the last half of one season and 1st half of another with them) may be one of the worst of all time. The Braves gave up the following for Texiera (and reliever Ron Mahay): Matt Harrison (who pitched in the All Star game last night), Elvis Andrus (who played in the All Star game last night), Neftali Feliz (who won the Rookie of the Year award for the Rangers a couple of years ago) and Jarrod Saltalamacchia (who has 17 homers at the break for the Red Sox). I guess Braves fans should be glad that Beau Jones, the other player the Braves gave up, hasn't done anything in the majors...yet.

Trades can be a scray thing, of course. What are the worst ones you can remember. A good trade for the Braves was nabbing a very young John Smoltz from Detroit for a very old Doyle Alexander. Of course, the all time worst trade (actually he was "sold"..so maybe not a "real" trade) was the Red Sox sending Babe Ruth to the Yankees. Bret Favre from the Falcons to the Packers for a 1st rounder wasn't pretty if you are a Falcons fan.

C-Vol II,

Excellent question. Simply outstanding.

You mentioned the worst trade ever - the Red Sox swapping Babe Ruth for $100,000 cash so Boston owner Harry Frazee could finance a Broadway play. Ruth held out for double his $20,000 salary after the 1919 season, saying he would retire without the raise. There were only two serious suitors for Ruth - the White Sox offered Shoeless Joe Jackson and $60,000 and the Yankees offered the straight cash deal.

Of course the Ruth deal was only a touch worse than the Reds dealing Frank Robinson for Milt Pappas and a collection of lesser-knowns. (Yes, less-known than Milt Pappas.)

Here are the five worse deals in the last 30 years:

1) The Colts giving away John Elway for the collection of stiffs that included Mark Hermann, Chris Hinton and Ron Solt. Ouch-standing.

2) Kobe Bryant to L.A. for Vlade Divac

3) Dallas sends Herschel Walker to Minnesota; Minnesota sends a dynasty to Dallas: In a deal that involved more draft picks than any happening since Pearl Harbor, the Cowboys built their early-1990s dynasty on the back of this deal. Dallas received five players, six conditional draft picks and a 1992 first-rounder. Jimmy Johnson continued to wheel and deal those picks and turned those seeds into a reported 55 players that helped the Cowboys. Among the players picked with the direct picks sent from Minnesota to Dallas were Emmitt Smith, Alvin Harper and Darren Woodson.

4) Boston sends Jeff Bagwell to Houston for Larry Anderson.

5) Dirk Nowitzki for Robert "Tractor" Traylor on draft day in 1998. Be very careful dealing on draft day.

Our favorite trade ever? That's easy. In 1962 the Mets sent Harry Chiti to Cleveland for a player to be named later. After the season, Cleveland sent Chiti back to the Mets as that player, so technically, the Mets and Indians traded Harry Chiti for Harry Chiti. That would have to be the most even trade of all time, right?

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From scole023,

I know how much you like to talk, so I'm going to make this easy for you. Here are three question, but you have to answer them in a paragraph each. I don't think you can do it, but let's give it a go.

When's the next contest - I like to win stuff?

Did you see the T.O. news?

Can this be the end of the Paterno story for a while?

Discuss.

scole023,

We love how you keep us in check. Thanks,

Well, let's give this a go.

The next contest is the Openly Open Championship Championship at next week's British Open. The rules are like normal with a slight twist as suggested by friend of the show wcole777. Pick five golfers and the low four finishes count and lowest score wins. The change this time is that if you pick Tiger Woods, you only get four picks and all will count. Questions?

We did see the T.O. news, and it's tragic. Dude is $20,000 behind in child support and failed to show at court this week, meaning jail time could be a real possibility. The future does not look bright for Mr. Owens, regardless of whether he wears shades or not.

It's impossible to know when the Paterno story will end. And since there's no way we can keep our views on that topic to a paragraph, we'll link to our column in today's paper http://www.timesfreepress.com/news/2012/jul/13/jay-greesonfreeh-folks-find-no-honor/.

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Gang, as always feel free to discuss any of the above topics - SPy, you have a couple of questions that won't be asked at SEC media days? - or anything on your mind.