- Did y'all see all the Honey Badger hullaballoo over the weekend? On Friday, USA Today ran a story covering Tyrann Mathieu's interviews with NFL teams leading up to the draft- of interest to those who follow the draft because Mathieu is considered a real wild card in terms of where he goes and when thanks to character concerns stemming from his drug issues. Apparently Mathieu told one team that he failed at least ten drug tests during his time in Baton Rouge. This prompted an anonymous coach to blame LSU, saying "If he flunked 10 tests before they suspended him, it shows that he got no kind of help." As expected, Mathieu and LSU AD Joe Alleva fired back, complaining about a perceived violation of privacy and defending LSU's drug policies. TEN times he failed without repercussions, LSU? Seriously? If that's true then the university really needs to reevaluate some things. In any event, with this story coming on the heels of the report that over half of Auburn's championship team stayed high on synthetic marijuana, expect the morality police to come out of the woodwork with another reason to demonize the sport.
- Much as rival fans and some in the media love to hate him, Coach Saban's reputation in coaching circles was on full display this weekend. Friday's practice saw over 1.600 high school coaches on the sidelines, in town for Alabama's annual coaching clinic that included several current and former NFL coaches as guest speakers. Additionally, some NFL coaches have apparently reached out to Saban for advice on defending the read option play that is becoming a full-on fad in the pro game. Money quote: "'People are getting up the field to pass rush because of the Tom Bradys of the world -- that's what you've got to stop," Saban told ESPN. "You've got to put pressure on the quarterback. Well, that's just what you don't want to do against (read-option quarterbacks). You have to play on the line of scrimmage just like old option football.'" Who better to ask about defending a college-style offense than the premier defensive mind in the college game, right?
- Looks like the SEC and ESPN have managed to hammer out a deal that will bring a new SEC network to us via the worldwide leader. The most interesting development here is that ESPN will now control broadcast rights to all SEC games save for the lone CBS game of the week that is contracted through 2023. The conspiracy theorists will only get louder now, voicing displeasure any time an ESPN analyst suggests that an SEC team is better than some gritty B1G or P12 squad. At least the network offices will be in Charlotte and not Birmingham like the SEC office. I've heard enough of that nonsense out of Opelika- "Alabama controls the conference, Slive is a puppet, move headquarters away from this state, rabble rabble..." Do have to wonder about the location though- could the next SEC expansion involve a school(s) from North Carolina?
- Another spring scrimmage is in the books and it's abundantly clear that offense won the day again. You can still count me among those who aren't terribly concerned about the defense, particularly since the unit is as banged up as it is right now- Saban doesn't seem to worry, so why should we? On the contrary, I am drooling in anticipation of the offensive possibilities. Folks, we have a fifth year senior QB coming off a campaign that saw him lead the nation in passer efficiency to go with a whole bunch of NFL caliber backs and receivers. There really is no limit to what this offense can do, and I'm betting that the defense will be in the top three nationally again as well. Enjoy next Saturday, folks. September's run toward #16 is a long way off.
Have a great week, everyone.