â†µThere was bragging, but then a sharp left turn into an extremely â†µdetailed and very clear discussion of another thing the SEC has â†µexcelled in over the past year: secondary violations of the NCAA's â†µrecruiting rules. Slive warned of actual, big-boy consequences for â†µrecruiting violations in a particularly pointy section of his opening â†µcomments. The juxtaposition was intentional and jarring: "Hi, â†µeveryone. We're bathing in a shower of pure gold bullion and success- â†µflavored baconflakes. Don't screw this up by waking up the NCAA while â†µsneaking out past curfew. Love, Mike." â†µ
â†µESPN ESPN ESPN ESPN: The summary of ESPN's â†µpresentation about their upcoming deal with the SEC can be summarized â†µin this manner: the SEC will be on every channel all the time â†µeverywhere in the universe that one can pick up a television signal, â†µand then sometimes not even there. John Wildhack, in between randomly â†µstringing together long chains of various ESPN networks as whole â†µsentences, spelled out precisely what the new megadeal between the SEC â†µand ESPN means. In theory, the league could have games on ESPN, ESPN2, â†µESPNU, ABC, the SEC Network (the reformed regional carrier) and â†µCSS. Repeated at least three times in the presentation was this magic â†µphrase: "Every. Game. Will be televised." â†µâ†µ
â†µThis includes CBS's existing deal for the SEC game of the week, â†µmeaning if you hate the megaconference's fat, luxurious squat on the â†µnational sports psyche now, you may as well take a nap in in your â†µgarage with the engine running. If you're an SEC fan, you just got â†µthrown into the briar patch. Congratulations. Also, the broadcasts â†µwill be going more global than ever, which is why you may be attacked â†µby rabid Alabama fans screaming "ROLL TIDE" at home, but also on â†µvacation in Mexico in a few years when the game catches on with the â†µlocals. We live in an age of wonders. â†µâ†µ
â†µThat smiling man looks like Bobby Petrino: I think â†µit was him, but that odd expression where he bares his teeth and the â†µdemeanor--I think you call it "happy"?--confused me immensely. â†µPetrino was breezy, relaxed, and a very different person than whoever â†µwas here last year. Petrino talked about Ryan Mallett's weight loss â†µ(thirty pounds from a high of 265), the difficulty of recruiting a â†µdropback passer ("I'd like to see teams required in high school to â†µtake 20% of the snaps from under center"), and how things at Arkansas â†µare generally about 300 times better than last year in terms â†µof improvement throughout the team, especially in terms of overall â†µroster depth. "Chipper" would describe him well right now, as likely a â†µpairing with the word "Petrino" as putting "Bobby Johnson" and â†µ"electrifying" in the same sentence. â†µâ†µ
â†µQuote of the day: "They got a chance to be pretty â†µgood." The deadpan answer of Bobby Johnson to the question of "Talk a â†µbit about Florida's chances this year," followed by a deadpan glance â†µand no less than five seconds of silence. â†µâ†µ
â†µThe Florida Media, United: One way or another, the â†µcollected Florida media will ferret out who did not vote Tim Tebow as â†µthe first team all-SEC quarterback. Both coaches so far were asked if â†µthey were the culprit, thus setting up the running gag for this year's â†µconference. Petrino's answer: "Yeah, I probably did." Johnson: "I'd â†µbe stupid not to." When life gives you lemons, you start throwing them â†µat people until someone flinches, an approach the Gator-affiliated â†µpress will take until someone confesses to being the mole who â†µtraitorously interrupted the preseason deification of St. Tebow. â†µManufactured drama is the tastiest drama, sometimes. â†µâ†µ
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