5-at-10: A non-SEC college playoff, Mark Cuban making moves, Petrino back to Arkansas

Dallas Mavericks team owner Mark Cuban walks to his seat during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Houston Rockets in Dallas, Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2023. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
Dallas Mavericks team owner Mark Cuban walks to his seat during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Houston Rockets in Dallas, Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2023. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

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College football ranking

So Bearddawg was right, Oregon got the coveted spot as the top-ranked one-loss team last night.

Not that it mattered, really, because it's nearly impossible not to view the Washington-Oregon Pac-12 title game as college football quarterfinal.

And tragically, next year, with 12 teams, that game simply would not matter. In fact, that game would better serve Washington financially to lose the Pac-12 title game, considering it would cement two conference teams swimming in the endless pool of playoff TV dollars.

Same goes with the SEC, which after last night, is staring at the very real possibility of not having a team in the CFP fold.

And know this: A college football playoff with Michigan, Washington/Oregon, FSU and Texas is not going to do well by comparison in the TV numbers.

That said, we are an Alabama upset of Georgia from facing that very real scenario, especially after CFP committee chair Boo Corrigan made it quite clear in his post-rankings comments.

"Head-to-head is head-to-head no matter when the game is played," Corrigan said Tuesday night on the televised news conference when asked about Texas, which beat the Tide in Tuscaloosa in week 2, being ranked 7 to Bama's 8.

That's huge, and maybe, in part it explains the SEC's motivation of changing course over the last few years and supporting the expanded field.

And the numbers certainly support why Greg Sankey and Co. were only listening to the change to 12.

If the final regular-season ranking next year looks like what was announced last night, that would assuredly put the $ in $EC.

1 Georgia, 7 Texas, 8 Alabama, 9 Missouri, 11 Mississippi, 12 Oklahoma, 13 LSU.

That would almost guarantee the SEC a third of the 12-team field and maybe more depending on how the chips fell.

So, yeah, the argument of expansion allowing more teams to contend for a title is mathematically accurate by definition.

But, as Capt. Renault famously said after Rick shot Maj. Strasser, when it comes time to play the 12-team playoff we'll round up the usual suspects.

Cuban playing chess

There are few owners out there who create as much attention and notoriety as Mark Cuban.

He made his fortune as a tech whiz in the early days of the interwebs. He parlayed that into owning the Dallas Mavericks, which led to TV shows and movie roles.

Seriously, how many owners of the Big Three American sports leagues could you name on site.

Jerry Jones. Robert Kraft. The big dancing goofy guy that owns the Clippers. Does Jeannie Buss still own the Lakers?

You get the idea. Cuban is definitely among them.

And now he's reportedly selling the majority shares of his team.

And he looks brilliant for doing so.

Cuban is selling to the Adelson family. Yes, the crew from Las Vegas who own the Las Vegas Sands casino conglomerate.

You have to think it will be a deal that starts with "b" right? (Late reports have the deal at $3.5 billion. In case you are curious, Cuban paid $285 million for the Mavericks in 2000 when he bought — stole — the team from Ross Perot Jr. Wow.)

Well, Cuban also keeps a minority share and control of basketball ops, so he gets a billion bucks, cashes out when the NBA may face some future struggles when LeBron and Steph retire and keeps control of the day-to-day ops, which is favorite part.

Brilliant, right?

Wait. There's actually more.

Reports have Cuban pitching to the Adelsons to build a new arena for the Mavs that naturally will include options for casinos and sports-betting kiosks down the road.

Plus, partnering with the Adelsons — who again live in Vegas, a city looking to attract as many professional sports teams as possible — all but guarantees a lot of local government help with the new venue in Dallas, right?

Tip of the visor Mark Cuban, you are a smart dude who may have just crafted your Mona Lisa.

As A&M turns

The stories of hirings and firings in the college football world come fast and furious.

And they are frequently incredible, right?

Maybe the all-time pinnacle was the Tennessee Twitter Takeover that turned a hired Greg Schiano into a pariah, ended the AD's career and reached all the way to Washington, D.C., where U.S. Senators were weighing in.

But there are always great stories, like the three-hour time frame that Mark Stoops was given a version of the Schiano treatment by Texas A&M fans, and what looked like Stoops-to-the-Aggies unraveled in three quick hours.

That of course led to the Aggies hiring Mike Elko from Duke, and in truth, I think the Aggies dodged a bullet all things considered. Here's more on how landing at Elko was not smooth sailing either.

It begs the question if Elko is better than Jimbo Fisher, who the Aggies are paying $77 million not to coach. It also empties the Aggies staff which led to two more juicy items of interest.

First, A&M receivers coach Dameyune Craig is now looking for work, and if the recruiting ace and for AU QB is not on Hugh Freeze's staff by Friday, someone's got some 'splain' to do.

And then there is former A&M OC, Mr. Bobby Petrino, who reportedly is heading back to Arkansas to be the OC there. This is glorious news, if for no other reason it gives us a renewed reason to use the "Rock Lobster" photo of Petrino after the "incident" involving a motorcycle, allegedly an Arkansas volleyball player and more.

Seriously, Petrino is a) one of the three best in-game play-callers I have ever seen, and b) an absolute abomination in handling his personal and professional dealings.

This and that

— This is one of the main reasons that I stay with Twitter. (Side note: I am not calling it "X." Not now. Not then. Not ever.) Fun little clip of the T-wolves halftime skit. And who does not belt out the "Turn around" from Bonnie Tyler's "Total Eclipse of the Heart" right?

— This is one of the stinky things about Twitter, and it suckered me in to the point that I wrote an entire top-three segment on the Braves signing Yoshinobu Yamamoto because of a fake Twitter post.

— You know the rules. Here's Paschall on Georgia's very impressive winning streak.

— Visor tip to Melissa Etheridge, who released a song "I Loved the Chiefs Before They Were Cool" has a fun premise to you know who. Plus, she will certainly get some Swiftie backlash bounce on this, too. Crafty.

— Major win for UK last night, as the Cats stomped a good and explosive Miami crew. Reed Shepard — son of former UK great Jeff Shepard — played his hightops off.

Today's questions

Which Way Wednesday starts this way:

Which side are you picking in the SEC title game?

Which college coach returning to a place would be akin to Petrino going back to Arkansas? Kiffin going back to Knoxville maybe?

Which hire would have been better, Stoops or Elko?

As for today, Nov. 29, let's review.

Chadwick Boseman would have been 47 today. Man, those "Black Panther" movies are legit.

Man, Pong was released on this day in 1972, set up in a tavern in California.

Rushmore of coin-operated gizmos over the last half century or so.


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