5-at-10: Monster mailbag with Saban’s next job, movie villains, sports radio and Weston’s win

Tennessee Titans head coach Mike Vrabel looks out from the sideline during the first half of an NFL football game against the Houston Texans, Sunday, Dec. 31, 2023, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
Tennessee Titans head coach Mike Vrabel looks out from the sideline during the first half of an NFL football game against the Houston Texans, Sunday, Dec. 31, 2023, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

Wow, great week friends and great job on the new comments section. Multiple days of 30-plus comments is awesome sauce.

And we have a slew of mailbag entries so I am going to do my best to move quickly.

To the bag.

From John

For years during his public appearances and press conferences, Nick Saban was cringing when he uttered the phrase, "Student athletes." He no longer has to choke back his cynicism and hypocrisy now that he's retired. It should be a banned phrase anyway...

He's right though with his comments on it becoming too large a CFP playoff format. The four-team field has already exposed some pretenders. Clemson and ALA were even exposed a couple of years themselves. ND and Cincy weren't alone as not being ready for prime time.

But if Tulane, Louisville, Boise or Fresno can sneak in any given year and grab some cash, why not? Everyone else has his hand out.


I hope they elect Nick Saban the Czar of College Football. Truly.

College football needs to break away from the NCAA. Everyone knows this. And Saban would have the stones and the respect to be the dude to lead the next generation.

The rest of the masses can play in the FCS.

Of course it's a money grab, and of course there will be imposters and flawed teams getting a 65-7 waxing at the hands of Georgia or THE Ohio State.

But my biggest complaint is now, was then and will forever be that the expanded field will kill the meaning of the best regular season in sports.


From Mike

Weston's W? You and he may see it that way, but for those of us living in both the city and county, this whole process has reflected poorly on both mayors. I would rather they work together for the collective good of our citizens than continually posture for win-lose media coverage. Here's hoping they at least gained some maturity from this painful exercise. If not, I hope it's one term and done. Personally, I wished Weston would take some lessons from his more savvy sister!


OK, and I get that Weston Wamp can rub some folks the wrong way.

But with the way the stadium deal played out, how is it not a win for WW?

Dude stood his ground — whether that ground was based on personal dirt or political drive is relatively meaningless at this point — and got a better deal for his taxpayers while still not being the person/candidate that forced the Lookouts to move and/or stopped progress and growth.

You can hate the player, Mike, but dude won this game.

From TC


Local Sports Talk Radio was touched on with some of the commentary in today's 5@10, which triggered a thought.

As it appears the "rug" has already been pulled out from under "Press Row," do you have any insights on whether Paschall and Guthrie are inclined to continue that platform in the near future with another local station?

Jerry Haskew was on a short segment Tuesday on GOW, which brought back many happy memories of "Dr. B."

I've always thought this area was lucky to have two local sports talk formats and particularly one that featured a long time SEC writer and the resources and contacts that Paschall brings to the show.

I also appreciated hearing the younger demographic point of view that Wells brings to the table.

And yes, I'm going to ask the question: Do you foresee ever returning to local sports talk radio if the opportunity presents?


Great email and discussion. Dr. B was a treasure. He was genuinely kind to me through the years, even when WGOW and the newspaper were not on the bestest of terms.

As for Press Row, I know Paschall and Wells are exploring other options, but as far as details on that, well, that's their story to tell. Not mine. I hope they find a place that suits their wants and needs because I have tried to listen whenever I can, and they — like Quake and Joe — do a great job at something that is not as easy as it looks.

I always thought I was awful on the radio, and knew it was a matter of time before I got fired. When you have this many opinions, eventually one will blow up in your mic. And in truth, I just talked loud and tried to make jokes. Paschall and Wells carried me for far too long as it was.

(Side note: It's a shame that ESPN national looks like it's leaving this market because "Unsportsmanlike" — the morning show from 6 to 10 — followed by Greeny and Carlin vs. Joe is the best lineup ESPN has offered since Mike and Mike was followed by LeBatard in my mind.)

From Easy Money

Always appreciate your western (betting) perspective. I'm CST so I can usually catch their final results and today when I got to FanDuel the Air Force number had dipped to a very appetizing 131.5.

On another front, what about Mike Vrabel? Is he really too imposing of a man that no one wants to hire him? I would think he'd have his pick of jobs next round.


Also, we should add this from Kevin on this week's picks: "Jay, your picks (bleeping) suck!"

Yep, been one of those weeks, and even the Air Force over machine failed us this week. (Side note: Minnesota is an ATM right now. Last night made it 23-3 against the spread and 17-1 at home against the number. CHA-Ching.)

As for Vrabel, I am shocked he did not get a job in this cycle. I would hire Mike Vrabel twice on Tuesdays before hiring Dan Quinn and his backwards cap.

And the story that Vrabel's size intimidated front office types is mind-blowing to me.

That dude can flat-out coach and getting that Titans crew to the AFC title game — with that front office, too — is a bona fide coup.

From George

(Jordan) Spieth doubled 18 and was probably pissed. Didn't check his card kept by another golfer.

I saw that hole. Spieth missed about a 3 foot par putt; scorekeeper probably didn't watch and assumed he made par. Definitely not an integrity issue.


I also saw multiple stories that Spieth needed to use the facilities ASAP. Someone even called it the "green apple gallop" from the final hole to the watering hole.

And the backlash I got from using Spieth's name and "cheater" was a little surprising since a) it was a question not an accusation and b) I never made that assertion as much as pondered the importance of perspective and past performance.

So it goes, I suppose.

Side question for the group: Have we seen Jordan Spieth's best? Has he peaked?

From J-Mac

Wow. Hate it about (Tuesday) night. Patted yourself on the back too many times. Just kidding ... your record is a good one for this long. I don't believe in superstitions affecting outcome ... unless you have to wear a thong to pitch to do your best.


Yep, a player on a streak has to respect the streak.

Still, the bumps and bruises of this week are hard on me because I don't often hear from the folks when we're rolling, but let a 1-5 Tuesday-Wednesday happen like it did this week, and buckle up.

The numbers speak for themselves I guess, and I assuredly want to hit every bet.

But we are where we be.

From Pat

The P.M. edition.

Great movie villains, eh?

How about the Sheriff of Nottingham in the otherwise dreadful Kevin Costner "Robin Hood" flick?

I also go Javier Bardem's character in "No Country for Old Men."

Peter Graves as the German spy among the POWs in "Stalag 17."

And of course, Gert Frobe as Auric Goldfinger in ... "Goldfinger." The man with the Midas touch.

I appreciate you welcoming all thoughts and opinions on your comments, but c'mon folks, let's remember what Sgt. Hulka said, "Lighten up, Frances."


So Alan Rickman was so money as a villain, right? Hans, Sheriff Nottingham, his turn in the Harry Potters. Heck he was villainous in "Love Actually," actually. Great call on Javier Bardem too, Pat.

Hannibal Lector has to be there, too. And the Nazi officer Christoph Waltz played in "Inglorious Basterds" is my Rushmore of worst villains.

But I asked for likable movie villains, so we'll keep Hans and Hannibal the Cannibal. Nothing likable about Bardem's psychopathic killer or Waltz's Nazi officer, and flip to Nicholson's Joker in the 1989 "Batman" and Darth Vader, because Darth Vader is Him.

Speaking of that, what else did we ask this week?

Rushmore of Dr. nicknames — Dr. J is far, far left, followed by Dr. Feelgood (Motley Crue was them at one point and time), Dr. Johnny Fever, and out of leftfield, Dr. Dunkenstein (Darrell Griffith of Louisville fame and man I loved that team). All apologies to Dr. Detroit, an underrated Dan Aykroyd vehicle.

Rushmore of Cindy — Crawford, Thompson (my mother-in-law, and of course she makes the Rushmore, because as Forrest Gump told us, "Stupid is as stupid does"), Brady.

Rushmore of albums. This is personal preference of course. And in terms of the boundaries, I will definitely put on my Rushmore Morgan Wallen's "Dangerous" because it is a) excellent and b) has like a billion songs. Next, can we include "Greatest Hits" collections here? Because the Beatles GH from 67-70 was a banger. Also, Purple Rain is close to perfection, which leaves me one final pick. Hmmmmmmm, any suggestions?

Have a great weekend. friends.

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