Bittersweet

November 3rd, 2008 leslie Posted in Random Musings, Vols Football No Comments »

The headline that my husband and a large continent of the Big Orange faithful have been clamoring for has come to fruition “Sources: Fulmer agrees to step down as Vols coach” – it’s not official yet but it looks like Head Football Coach Phillip Fulmer is on the way out. A press conference with Mike Hamilton and Coach Fulmer is to be held at 5PM Eastern time. So the eyes and ears of the Vol Nation will be directed towards Knoxville. Looks like even the Crimson Beastmonger himself, Paul Finebaum will have his ears open, too bad his website is unavailable:

Paul Finebaum - I think you need a bigger "box".

Paul Finebaum - I think you need a bigger box

I guess the rammer jammers are eating it up. So now we wait to find out the fate of Phil Fulmer and the Tennessee Vols Football program.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Faded and Worn

November 2nd, 2008 leslie Posted in Random Musings, Vols Football No Comments »

Just like my favorite Tennessee tree has started to fade and yellow with age, so have the motivating abilities of Phil Fulmer. The players no longer play with enthusiasm, there is no fire in the bellies of these young men, perhaps with the except of Nick Stephens. I first wondered why he was benched after he threw his first interception? Was he too upset to play? Then I read “On Nick’s pick, I didn’t think he hustled after the interception, and I wanted to set a tone,” offensive coordinator Dave Clawson said. “He needed a reminder you always have to play hard.” Maybe it could have been the motivated he and the whole team needed to get the game turned around. Did you notice how many players came up to him to “console” him? Stephens had thrown his 106th consecutive pass without an interception up to that point. Didn’t hustle, give me a break.

I have to give a few tiny brownie points for the 4th down attempts. I was still seeing a lot of the same old stuff, nothing new, nothing exciting, nothing cutting edge. I heard the game commentators mention that the players have put in a new set of rules to follow – I would like to find more information on that. I do believe that part of the past and present problems are discipline issues.

John Pennington make a good argument in his article Seeing the Fulmer situation from all sides as to why Coach Fulmer is worthy to continue. What have Joe Paterno and Bobby Bowden done differently this year to make a difference

“He’s won the right way, with no major NCAA violations occurring during his watch.” – that speaks for the man’s character, but sometimes leading by example may not enough these young players. Not all kids coming up today have a strong sense of discipline, but they need it and even crave it, both on AND off the field. . Even Dave Hooker, when he graded this week’s Coaching performance in his Vol report card: UT vs. USC mentions “UT’s offense lacks direction and is woefully undisciplined.” – it’s not just the offense, I sense a breakdown in the whole team.

It should be a wake up call when “Tennessee fans all around Neyland Stadium sold their tickets to Alabama fans last week”. Even I was telling the locals here how to go online and purchase tickets that were still available. It brings me back to a comment that Crompton had made about playing for “family” – no son, it IS about the money. If the seats are not being filled, it could possibly have an impact on scholarships, doubtful but it’s something to think about.

Now as for my faded, yellowed tree I can do one of two things; I can replace the tree with a new one or I can take the time and trouble to clean and bleach the old one to try and make it look new again, but both options are very tedious and time consuming. Just like fixing the Vols, it’s going to be a tediously process that may take time.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Letter TO SEC Commissioner Mike Slive

October 27th, 2008 leslie Posted in Random Musings, Vols Football No Comments »

I received an interesting email that confirms we all saw bad officiating and might even feed into my husband’s conspiracy theory:

Commissioner Slive,
I know you care about the SEC and I know you love our tradition here in the Southeast. But sir in all fairness, the SEC officiating has really fallen off and I am at a loss to explain why the SEC Commissioner’s office does nothing. Many fans had hoped the video replay system would have fixed some of this, but it’s almost as if we can admit errors on the field anymore. More importantly the traditions of the SEC are ruined by poor officiating performances.

Take the performance of Steve Shaw’s team in the latest 3rd Saturday in October. They clearly missed five calls and ESPN was not that hard on the referees — but ESPN did speak the obvious. The botched fumble (where Eric Berry scored), how can the ball not be loose in his hands, when it pops out of his side the second his posterior hit the ground??? The ball was NOT tipped when one interference was overlooked and Lucas Taylor DID NOT INTERFERE on the last Tennessee drive in the first half. Holding was everywhere and it was almost POETIC to watch two SEC officials calling the SAME PLAY DIFFERENT WAYS IN EACH OTHER’s FACE — remember the catch out of bounds where one ref looked only at the FEET and NOT THE BALL??? The black official WOULD NOT LET a Birmingham native (the other UMP) make a call so obviously wrong. Watch that replay Mike, for 20 seconds or more one signaled “complete” and the OTHER SIGNALED “INCOMPLETE” — that call was the metaphor for Steve Shaw’s officials that night — clueless!!

STEVE SHAW’S CREWS INTERFERED with the general discourse and the outcome of that game. So our SEC officials live in Birmingham, raise their kids there and are influenced by all things Alabama. THEY SHOULD BE — they want to live there and be a part of the community. However, this DOES NOT promote the kind of “JUST WHAT I SAW” performances on the football field. Yes I know who Steve Shaw is and his so-called reputation — I believe he is BIASed period. I would not let him officiate Pop Warner football in my city.

Look Mike, what will it hurt to establish two official offices of SEC refs in two different divisions of the conference. Refs who live EAST UMPIRE ONLY (say Columbia, SC) in the WEST (except Championship games) and refs in the WEST (say Oxford, MS) UMPIRE ONLY IN THE EAST. Just do it for the fans, since you dont believe you have an issue based on your inaction, but watch the games go back to the SEC we all remember….

Personally I wish many umps and refs in the SEC would move on or try a little harder, but only the SEC office can fix what I call issues of the heart. I will never forget the pathetic job the SEC officials did last year in the Wake Forest postseason bowl game — I was embarrassed to be an SEC fan. With just a little evaluation of human nature however, I think our SEC issues become null and void. Right now however, I believe regionalism has run amuk.

Fix it Mike. Only you can…

Garrett Hauser
An SEC fan.

So there you have it.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Gut Feelings

October 26th, 2008 leslie Posted in Vols Football No Comments »

As the natives get restless and clamor for Fulmer’s head, I’ve got my own gut feeling – we are dealing with gutless wonders. I agree with one commenter response to Mike Strange’s article Is the battle lost? Fulmer ‘working to get it fixed’ – “I am still not convinced that Hamilton has the intestinal fortitude to pull the trigger on Fulmer’s exit.” That’s my gut feeling, I don’t think it will happen.

My husband was one of those who had that “gut feeling” that Tennessee was going to win last night. But he is also one of those who is adamant  that Fulmer must go. He was extremely angry about the officiating of the game. I even heard some conspiracy theory that the SEC was not going to let Tennessee beat Alabama. Some of the calls against the Vols might lead some to think that.

I think it had more to do with the gutless play calling. Everything was safe, too safe, no fire. Drew Edwards nailed it “Another big game brought more wasted opportunities for Tennessee’s offense.” in his article Miscues, missed chances condemning Tennessee. Opportunity knocked, even pounded on the door but Fulmer wouldn’t let it in.

How much more do you need, Mike Hamilton? How much more? Losing out the rest of the season? How much longer will you allow such a fine tradition to be battered into the ground? My gut hurts so bad I want to puke.

Blogged with the Flock Browser
AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Here’s Your Sign

October 24th, 2008 leslie Posted in Random Musings, Vols Football No Comments »

While we were being told that tickets are available for the TN-AL game, comes word that tickets are also available for the TN-SC game. Seems these are tickets that were returned to South Carolina. So I thought I would look to see if any tickets were still available for the TN-AL game. Lo and behold what do I see?

Now this is sad, the infamous TN-AL is not a sell out. What’s even worse, look at the price for these “Obstructed View” seats – $70 each. First, it was the student tickets at $70 a piece, now it’s $70 for a crappy view? And I don’t mean some pillar in my way either.

Hello? Is anybody listening? Don’t give me the “It’s the economy, stupid” speech. If the powers that be are so worried about the economy, why charge premium prices on these seats?

I wonder what happened to the “Ask Mike Hamilton” link on the UTSports.com web site? The only thing that ever happened when I sent an email to Mike is I now get spammed from the University.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button