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FILE: Staff Photo by Robin Rudd/ UTC offensive line coach Chris Malone talks to his players on September 28, 2019.

Tragic day for America

So, anything happen Wednesday that caught your attention?

Mocs and Vols winning on the hardwood, maybe? The Heisman-winning Alabama wide receiver being only the second-most discussed player in his position group perhaps?

Of course we're talking about the pro-Trump mob that stormed the Capitol. It was unbelievable to watch and impossible to turn off. (Side question for teh group: What time did you finally turn it off? I was up SUPER late.)

It was the final tarnish on the legacy of Donald Trump and the stain reaches across a large swath of the part of the Republican party that became mindless barnacles on the SS Trump, checking their pride and their patriotic duty for personal benefit.

The riots were so many things. Embarrassing. Infuriating. Sad.

And maybe worse than all of those is that in so many ways it was also predictable, yet the authorities were not prepared for it.

It's a tragic day for America, friends, and if that makes you pleased or gives you pride because you can offer "See, I told ya," well our problems go far beyond than one egomaniacal millionaire who builds crappy hotels and tears down a once-great nation.

But make no mistake, it's a terrible day and a worse look for Trump enablers. And here's praying that this pushes all beyond the polluted phase that was Trump in American politics. His actions — and inactions — Wednesday will forever be the first line in his legacy and are far worse than and forever undermined and all-but cancel anything relatively positive he accomplished or any conventional thinking about true change in the system and Washington.

In fact, while the conversations and accusations of impeachment have almost always been overblown by any president's opponents, this final act was worse than any act of any previous president in our history.

Whether you agree with me or not, whether you want to speak on this or don't, whether you cheer for Alabama or are a hard-luck Auburn grad like me, this was a tragic day for America.

And for all Americans.    


Speaking of really bad days

OK, when I started typing this morning the power brokers in UTC athletics were looking into offensive line coach Chris Malone's reported social media post from Tuesday night.

I first saw this on @NoogaHoller on Twitter, and if accurate, it's hard to see Malone's career lasting much beyond lunch. Then I saw an early morning update from TFP UTC beat ace Gene Henley, in which he reports that the Tweet is in fact from Malone's account.

So it turns out, the reports were accurate, the Tweet was from Malone, and he's been fired from his job on Rusty Wright's staff. Here's more from Mean Gene.

Malone posted this on Twitter late Tuesday night: "Congratulations to the state GA and Fat Albert @staceyabrams because you have truly shown America the true works of cheating in an election, again!!! Enjoy the buffet Big Girl! You earned it!!! Hope the money was good, still not governor!"


In addition to being offensive and unacceptable, it's impossible to see how any college coach who needs to convince young people and their parents to trust their formative years with that coach can keep their gig. Especially when a large number of those young people and their families are Black.


Fab 4 picks (and some college football bits and pieces)

Man, heavy start huh? Anyone got any funny stories.

Spy, from the back: "Hey how about your picks? They've been a joke all Fall."

First, we'll start with the good news. We're getting our laptop back today and either tonight or in tomorrow's mailbag we will have the standings headed into Monday's title game.

Speaking of the Heisman, did you see that has listed the first 2021 Heisman odds? The top four names on the list are likely the starting QBs for the quite possibly the preseason top four teams in the country, in some order: Oklahoma's Spencer Rattler (7-to-1), Clemson's D.J. Ulagalelei (9-to-1), Georgia's JT Daniels (11-to-1), Alabama's Bryce Young (13-to-1).

Speaking of the bowls, we're all in on Alabama in this one, and I'm not sure how high that line could get that would sway my opinion. And in terms of actually backing THE Ohio State in this one, it would have to get north of 14, don't you think? And we're doubly all in on Alabama in the first half.

Speaking of gambling, well, how's this for a total? Regular season Fab 4 college picks went a very non-5-at-10ish 40-43. Our bowl picks are 17-16. Our NFL picks are 38-36. Add those together, and for those of us who went to the 13th grade in Auburn, we may or may not need to take our shoes off when we get to these big numbers, that total is an amazingly pedestrian 95-95. Oy vey.


This and that

— Wow, how about this story in the TFP in which an anonymous donor gave $1 million to the Mountain Education folks. I'll say it again, wow.

— You know the rules. Here's Paschall on Alabama's running game and Najee Harris.

— Did you see that the Sports Business Journal reported that the New Year's Six bowl games averaged the lowest viewership since the College Football Playoff began?

— The single funny thing from Wednesday's mob in Washington was the Tweet from the account named @BunkiePerkins, who wrote "Tommy Tuberville gets sworn in and the Capitol's defense immediately falls apart."


Today's questions

Well, now feels like a time for someone — anyone — to offer a fun story, no?

As for today, well Lamar Jackson is 24 today. Nic Cage is 57.

Feel free to pick — Rushmore of 'Lamar' or Nic Cage's Rushmore.

Go, we need some levity today. And remember the mailbag.