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Miami Heat forward LeBron James shoots over San Antonio Spurs forward Tim Duncan (21) during their Game 2 of the NBA finals on Saturday, Nov. 8, 2014, in San Antonio.

OK, this is pretty surreal. It's voting day in Hamilton County; it's the first day of school and our oldest starts first grade (monster deal and apparently he's the only one not freaking out); it's our 10th wedding anniversary; it's the day that the NCAA votes to either surrender a lot of control to the big five conferences or they deny the petition and sign the NCAA's eventual death warrant because that would force the big five conferences to spilt off and do their own thing; it's the birthday of Mike Trout and Sidney Crosby - only the best players in two of the four major North American team sports (also of note in this category: Tiger Woods and LeBron James were each born on December 30, so there's that).

From the "Talks too much" studios, basically, we're dealing with a lot of stuff here. Candlesticks always make a nice gift; maybe find out where she's registered and get a place setting. Let's get two.


The NCAA board of governors is voting today whether to allow the power five conferences more autonomy.

It is the ultimate rock-and-a-hard-place dilemma for the NCAA.

Before we go any further, the NCAA has forced everyone's hand and put itself in this place by being arguable the worst billion-dollar operation this side of the Federal Government. This dilemma has been forged by years of NCAA indifference, indiscretion, intolerance and insincerity. The NCAA gets no pity from us because in the end, the group most altered by this is the college sports fans. If the NCAA suffers, they deserve it. College sports fans are facing a life-changing decision today that could drastically change the face of college sports and how they are operated and all the fans did in most cases was love their teams.

We must also tip the visor to Kansas State coach Bill Snyder, who on Wednesday fired the pure shot of truth.

"It's changed. I mean, college athletics, football in particular, has changed dramatically over the years," Snyder told reporters. "I think we've sold out. We're all about dollars and cents.

"The concept of college football no longer has any bearing on the quality of the person, the quality of students. Universities are selling themselves out."

And yes, the fact that this votes comes a week before the SEC Network launches - an endeavor that likely could make the strongest conference in all of college sports more than $100 million annually - is hardly lost in translation.

Here's the divergent paths for the NCAA: Vote to allow the big five to govern themselves and reset their rules - something college sports has been crying for the NCAA to do for years - and the NCAA becomes marginalized to no more than the fifth strongest body in college sports. Or vote to continue down this path of status quo and wait as the big five look to form their own alliance. This will delay the movement but it would leave the rest of college sports twisting in the wind.

And believe this: The message was clear from all of the big five commissioners during the media events in the last month. Change is coming, and they are dictating the change.

If the big five breaks away - and they will unless they are pleased with this vote because the TV dollars of the College Football Playoff are too great and they know they control those purse strings - it's anyone's guess how everyone else would operate in a Survivor-esque landscape of college athletics.



When you're growing up - and pardon the reflective chat as our son begins his academic pursuits in earnest - you hear people say things that matter and decisions that could affect your entire life.

It's not that kids don't listen as much as they can't hear or fathom the context.

We say this knowing that when we were in school, our wish list was clouded with very childish things and selfish desires. We think we know what we want, but we have no idea how to take the steps to true happiness or how to find the people with whom we will enjoy the stroll.

In the end, beyond the fundamental basics of food, clothes and shelter that we all are blessed with, all that matters is the people in your life and the relationships with them.

I know the Lord sent my wife to me for a variety of reasons. It was a blessing, and I thank Him for it daily.

There's a poetry and a purpose to knowing that you have found the one. For that, I am eternally grateful.

On this day - at about 5 p.m. on an amazingly cool Saturday in 2004 in south central Alabama - I was lucky enough to marry my one.

K, I love you - more every day.



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Atlanta Braves' James Russell throws in relief against the Seattle Mariners in his game Wednesday, Aug. 6, 2014, in Seattle.

Another day, another loss.

Atlanta has lost eight straight. Not good. Or for some of our friends to the South, "No es bueno."

The Good: Not much.

The Bad: Too much.

The Upton: Wow. Stinky Upton went 1-for-3, which may tie him for a career best. Brother Justin went 0-for-4 with four Ks. Has baseball adopted a new rule that only one Upton is allowed a hit per game?



This and that

- In our research about the oddities of Aug. 7 we also discovered that American critic and academic Judith Crist died on this day two years ago. If Judith Crist married a man with a lisp and he got passionate and said "Jesus Christ Judith Crist," well, those would run together pretty quick.

- Checking Twitter this morning, we saw @darrenrovell posted at the Hartford (Ohio) Fair they have deep fried a pop tart and covered it with Fruity Pebbles. And we're still having trouble figuring out why America is the fattest country in the world?

- Our deepest apologies to DCrotty and Co. about our lack of PGA Championship preview in Wednesday's 5-at-10. That's on us and we have no excuses. So here's the question we posed to Paschall on Press Row: "Would you take the field or Rory, Rickie and Sergio?" We're taking the trio of guys who either individually or collectively have been in the mix for almost all of the big events of the season. That said, we're hoping for a miracle and Tiger and Phil to be in the mix. Call us silly. Or nostalgic. Or just plain tipsy. Thank sir, we'll have another. It's 8 o'clock in the morning. Scotch? (Yes, we just pulled the rare Animal House-Mr. Mom triple lindy - Back to School - and got a 9.9 form the Russian judge).

Today's question

Gang, we're opening the mic and go to work.

But in honor of going back to the classroom - and a rare "Back to School" movie reference above - we want a Rushmore of movies with the word 'School' in the title.