Time for a move…

September 30, 2008

Hey folks… I’ve been offered a blog position over at Curveballs for Jesus.  I will be doing most of my writing on that site, so be sure to check me out over there!

Nice Bags of the week…

September 25, 2008

Its been a gut wrenching week for Tennessee fans after the Gator Chomping, but their is no time to lick our wounds as the Tigers already smell the blood… Tennessee should respond as they have in recent years when their wounded and the back is against the wall.  Check out some other great posts of the week from fellow Vol bloggers and other goodies..

Curveballs For Jesus’ week of PAIN

If Dreams come true over at 3rd Saturday in Blogtober

For a great read to all of Vol Nation head on into Gate21

Crompton is the 13th worst QB in the SEC… yes their are only 12 Teams in the SEC

My college report cards looked better than this, and thats not saying much…

Save it for Baseball season BooBirds… RockyTopTalk puts it straight here…

A breathe of fresh air that i haven’t been able to enjoy, Cubs Clinch!

Shameless plug and report to a trophy catfish on my fishing site, CFF

I just saw you on TV, I love you in orange…

September 25, 2008

The Match Up: Tennesee vs. Auburn

September 25, 2008

 

 

 

 

 

The Match Up:  Tennessee Volunteers vs. Auburn Tigers

Location: Jordan Hare Stadium, Auburn, AL

Game Time: 2:30 CST

TV Coverage: CBS

Key Matchup: Tennessee running backs vs. Auburn linebackers:  The question on everyones mind this week around The Hill is how will Crompton react to the blitzing packages.  Most would say at this point, Crompton will not react well.  The folks over at LWS laid his situation out well, please take a look here for their perspective.  Great stuff guys… 

Pounding the rock on the way to SEC Champ 97

Pounding the rock on the way to SEC Champ 97

Anyways, This is where the running backs must step up and assist in picking up the outside rush.  The first time I see Arian Foster ole’ an outside blitzer, I’ll probably storm the field and put my head in his numbers.  I am absolutely sick of watching him play so selfishly.  Be a man, and do your all for Tennessee.  That being said, Fulmer has said Montario Hardesty’s pass blocking has been subject in the past.  Lets hope for an improvement on that front.  We are going to need several series of Montario Hardesty to make up for the ballerina dancing that Arian Foster is sure to be doing. 

The glimmer of hope is that Auburn’s stud LB Tray Blackmon has a fractured wrist, and Auburn reports him as good to go, but they also said that about Kodi Burns last week.

Major Storyline: How will this Vol team react against Auburn?  Will the pressure of possibly going 1-3, and the BooBirds have this team ready play?  Obviously this has been a tough week for the team and Program, but they have been working like HECK to

De-on GRANT! Give him SIX!

De-on GRANT! Give him SIX!

improve this week.  How is the defense preparing for a semi-spread attack?  Let us hope that Fulmer has felt his back against the wall, and has his troops ready for battle at 2:30. If I was a betting man (no laughs) I would say that Fulmer will have his team prepared for battle.  They will be ready until he looks across the field and Tommy Tuberville gives him a wink and blows him a kiss.  At that time Phil will shat his pants and the game plan goes out of the window.  Ok, so I’m kidding… I think Phil will have the boys ready to play, and will pull out a tight one… Daniel Lincoln gets sweet redemption drilling three long field goals, and the defense gives us a pick 6 for…

BDLC Fearless and Clueless Pick:  Tennessee 30 Auburn 28

Our Coach In This College Football Landscape…

September 25, 2008

What do you expect from your team’s Head Football Coach?  This is a difficult question for most fans to truly answer, especially Tennessee fans.  Most Tennessee fans over the last 30 years, would respond, “We want our coach to beat Bama!”  Great answer, but that answer is too macro for today’s college football landscape. 

 

 It is simple to see that the entire landscape of college football over the last 25 years has drastically changed.  We’ve seen trends come and go, we’ve seen a dynamic change in offense. Programs have moved away from the standard option offense (of course many variations), to the Power I, then to West Coast Style, and now the trend is towards the Spread Attack.  Defenses have had to adjust and strategize against the new styles of offenses.  Eventually and enviably the defenses will solve the offensive styles, and the “Offensive Gurus” will move to the next great scheme.  On a side note, I personally can’t wait for defensive coordinators to solve the Spread, I personally hate it.  Anyways, what I am getting at is that college football is an ever adapting sport.  Styles, offenses and defenses continually change and adjust to compete in the current college football landscape.  Adjustment and adaptation is college football…

 

Let’s keep this in mind and take a look at the University of Tennessee football program. 

 

Johnny Majors’ 1977 campaign motto, “Follow Me to Tennessee!” delighted the Tennessee faithful and put dreams of SEC and National Championships dancing in their heads.  All of the Tennessee faithful were ready for the inconsistency of the Bill Battle years to end, and Tennessee’s favorite son bring pride back to the University of Tennessee.  Coach Majors had some great years at Tennessee, bringing us the memories of the 85, 89, and 90 SEC Championship teams.  However, Coach Majors had an overall 64% winning percentage, and had a 58% percent against the SEC, which is disappointing looking back at the talent his teams had.  We all know what transpired in 1992, and eventually offensive coordinator Phillip Fulmer took over for Coach Majors.  The same program, the same system, and the same mentality…

 

Coach Fulmer took over one of the most talented Programs in the nation, and held it together well bringing UT SEC Championships in 97 and 98, which was of course our perfect National Championship team.  The same program, the same system, but a more fearless mentality…If you are reading this still, you know what has transpired to the Program since 1998.  Or do you really?  My answer to that is absolutely nothing has happened.  Nothing… the style, and the coaching is the same as it was in 1998…1992…1985…1977. Tennessee football has not adjusted.  Tennessee football has not adapted.

 

College football purist like this ideal of traditional powerhouse collegiate programs that sticks to their bread and butter, and rely on pure tradition to hold their programs competitive on the national scene.  Programs like Nebraska, Penn State, Florida State, and Texas A&M all have relied on rich football traditions and historical significance to maintain national prowess.  Has that mentality got those programs anywhere over the last 5 years?  I am afraid that the University of Tennessee is going to fall into this category under our current regime.  Our head coach has played, assisted or coached for the University of Tennessee program 35 out of the last 40 years.  That is amazing and honorable, but sir, college football has passed you by, mainly because of your stubbornness and refusal to adjust and adapt. 

Currently this is what we are getting out of our head football coach: Mistake filled Football, out schemed by other coaches, failure to make adjustments, strangling coordinators, not disciplining coordinators, and ultimately the fear of change.  Coach Fulmer’s recent teams have consistently made unacceptable mental mistakes.  If a SEC coach has ample time to prepare for UT, Coach Fulmer will be out coached.  Coordinators are initially responsible for making in-game adjustments, but when they are not made the buck stops at the Head Coach, Coach Fulmer refuses to demand adjustments from Coach Chavis.  Coach Fulmer refuses to let Coach Clawson implement his offense, which is the reason we brought him here in the first place.  Coach Fulmer refuses to hold Coach Chavis accountable for the unacceptable defensive miscues of the last 7 years.  Coach Phillip Fulmer is scared to death of change; he simply does not trust coordinators and coaches that do not have a long term Tennessee pedigree.  He refuses to adjust and adapt.

 

This is not what I want out of my head coach anymore.

 

I am jealous of teams with coaches that show true intensity.  In our head coach I want; to see our team display; discipline, fundamentals, a game plan, ability to adjust, intensity, and decisiveness.  I want my head coach to rely on Coordinators but also hold coordinators accountable.  I don’t want my head coach to be everyone’s friend.  I don’t want my head coach starting a player, because he’s been loyal to Tennessee and is close to a record. 

 

I want my head coach to do everything he can to WIN (legally).  If that means starting and playing 11 true freshmen, then my goodness, do it!!  That is the landscape of college football today, the best players take the field, the best teams field their best players, and the best teams win championships.  Our coach takes pride in being the father of this team, to be the man the players can confide in.  I am afraid this is impossible for a coach to do and still have the full respect and intimidation that a head coach needs these days to control and discipline his team. 

I want a sideline stalker, someone that will snap your head of for inexcusable mental errors… I don’t want my head coach to be a player’s best friend or surrogate dad.  That model worked at one time, but is out of date, and those coaches are losing football games. The Head Coach should be a great example in the way he carries himself, but not a pushover.   

 

I want my head coach to adapt, I want my head coach to jump into a time machine and come to 2008.  Leave 1998 behind… adapt and adjust.   

 

Unfortunately, our head coach over the last 10 years has shown that he can’t and will not adapt and adjust.

Welcome to the Dumpster

September 24, 2008

This is sad… the Tennessee Volunteers have made ESPN’s Bottom 10

This is going to be the perfect catalyst for my article tonight… check back.

My Attempt to Get Fired Up for the Auburn Game..

September 23, 2008

An outpouring of emotion… An end to an era?

September 22, 2008

This post is in response to my good friend over at 3rd Saturday in Blogtober, as we discuss the current state of the Tennessee Football Program and our Head Coach Philip Fulmer.  I have never in my life said its time for Fulmer to be gone, but I will share my new thought process with each of you now. 

Check out the great post by The Ghost of Neyland here.

Ghost,

As we’ve discussed I’ve been depressed for a solid 20 days now. Never in my life did I believe that I would feel the way that Alabama (00-01, 03-04) and Auburn (98-99) fans have felt recently. I feel lost, confused and unled. I feel cheated, and I feel that my home state has began to turn on itself.

I have been going to Tennessee games for 15 years. I have never seen a UT crowd react the way they did on Saturday. There Patrick, my brother and I were in Section W turned around pleading with my “fellow Volunteers” not to boo, not to give up, and not to discourage our team and the recruits we had there. The response was, “Shut UP!,” “Sit down!,” and “Go Home!” It was the most gut wrenching disgusted feeling I have ever had. I wanted to go into a corner, throw up, and just wake up forgetting everything that just happened to me. In my wildest dreams I never expected our Program to be in this state.

I remember growing up in the 90s (the first time I could really understand football) watching Tennessee dominate. Well, everyone but Florida. I watched Fulmer come in and remove the stigma of Alabama that had been instilled in our Program through years of Johnny Majors’ conservatism, fear, and gross underutilization of talent. I watched Fulmer close out the 90s hammering out 5 straight spankings to Alabama by a combined score of 155-73. We exposed teams, we dominated teams. Won a National Championship (in my opinion the only real one since we lost our bowl game in 1951 to OU) and two SEC Championships… could it get better than this?

I remember my dad saying to me, “Brandon, enjoy this, because I have never seen an era of dominance like this in my lifetime. Cherish it, because I’m sure it will come to an end at sometime.” It happened to us early 70s, and it was on the verge of happening in the early 90s… it took us 6-8 years to get over the Bill Battle years, and fortunately it only took us 1 year to get over the conservatism, fear, and gross underutilization of talent that occured in the JM years (later years losses to Alabama were unacceptable)… That is what Fulmer did, and he continued the fight for many years to come.

It saddens me to say that I feel that the University of Tennessee needs to take the early 90s route again. It is time for a true University of Tennessee football HERO to step down, forced or willing, I believe it needs to happen so the ship can be mended and afloat again very soon. PLEASE, do not let the 1970s happen again. Coach Fulmer, please don’t let the program so far down that it will take 6-8 years to come back. Do this for your team, and your University. I respect you, and thank you for everything you have done for the University.

I will NOT sign that stupid petition. This man has done more for the University of Tennessee than anyone since General Neyland. I just believe his time is over as our Head Coach, and I pray that he realizes that as well, and turns the reigns over to a new Horse. Do it with pride Coach, do it with class, announce your resignation and finish this year strong. I am a mere fan, and have NO idea what the pressures of coaching at what is a difficult place to coach, yet one of the most fantastic football programs in the nation. So other than offering an opinion I will do nothing more to aid any movement to REMOVE our coach. I just hope that he realizes what state we are in, and steps aside gracefully.

BDLC, a.k.a. Glutton For Punishment

September 22, 2008

There are many rumors floating around about our staff and players right now.  I’ve heard them outlandish as Bill Cowher being in town for an interview to Johnny Majors coming back for a final hurrah.  An interesting thread from Volquest even stated that old UT money is approaching former Detriot Lions head coach and current Eagles’ OC Mark Mornhinweg.  Link

I am pretty interested in this rumor.  The transition from NFL to College has worked for USC, but has failed for programs like Virginia. 

This isn’t the beginning of my coup on the current regime.  I have however for the first time ever started to truly question the leadership at the top.  The buck has to stop somewhere.  I want to believe in Fulmer.  I want him to do the things at the University he loves so much, that will make this Program a national elite again.  I just don’t know if those stars will align for us again under the current regime.  I saw a disturbing stat the other day… Fulmer is NOW 39-36 against current SEC coaches… its hard to find the diamond in that rough.

Now, I am fully behind the Vols for the rest of the season, and yes, sometimes I feel like a glutton for punishment… but its better than being apathetic.  I will take the long road to Auburn this weekend, in the hopes of a light bulb comes on like it did last year, but at this point in time, I’m not holding my breath.

Chicago Cubs – 2008 NL Central Champions!

September 22, 2008

We are one step closer to pure and total heartache again!  Two years in a row this time… 

I love this team, this squad is full of gamers like Ryan Theriot, Reid Johnson, and Mark Derosa.  These guys aren’t super stars or making $15M a year, but they love the game, and I love them.  Man crush!

The Divisonal Series wil be the Wild Card Winner or the NL West Champ.  If the WC Winner (they are winners, champs of nothing) is a Central team the Cubs will draw the West Champ.  This is the scenario I am praying for… I WANT NOTHING TO DO WITH THE PHILLIES IF THEY WIN THE WC. 

The real question is, what is going to monumentally fail this year?  We are definately the most talented team in the NL, but something will probably give… lets just hope his name isn’t Steve.

Best case scenario is we will face the Dodgers in the opening round, the Cubs were 5-2 against LA Punks this season.  Their top 3 starts do concern me, Maddux, Penny, and Lowe.  We have roughed Lowe up in the past, but I’m afraid the curse of Maddux might shank us.  Of course I’m referring to the brilliant move in the offseason between ’92 and ’93 where we released Maddux, and all he did was lead the Bravos to 10 Divison Titles in a row. 

Well I’ll be sure and give untimely and unnecessary commentary through the entire post season run.


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