Tuesday, March 24, 2009

It's over for the women; Just starting for football

Leading Off (The Cuff):
We'll start with the enormous egg laid in Piscataway, N.J. by Auburn. Yes, the women faced a difficult challenge in their second-round game because they faced Rutgers on the Scarlet Knights' home court. They had an opportunity to make a statement that they weren't going to let anything get in their way.
Instead, Rutgers thoroughly dominated the game, opening on a 26-8 run and never allowing the Tigers to within a single-digit deficit.
Was it a tough break for the Tigers to have to play at Rutgers? Absolutely. Rutgers didn't, however, get 28 points just for playing at home. This was a disastrous way for one of Auburn's all-time great senior classes to go out.
Moving to football, spring practice begins today. You will see none of it. Neither will I.
Auburn is following the recent trend of allowing of closing practices until the spring game. What does that mean for you? It means no more Tuesday and Thursday mornings at the practice complex and it means I won't be able to provide you with any details other than what I hear from coaches.
It's understandable, really. The team is installing a new offense. It's not like the offensive coordinator wrote a book about his offense that's available on Amazon.com.
Auburn coach Gene Chizik said today the players deal with enough pressure and they don't need any more from media and fans watching, writing, talking and thinking about them.
The secrecy is annoying, but we'll deal with it. You'll still get football updates, just not as many.

Today's Starting Lineup:
We've already covered football and women's basketball. Remember, the men are going for a spot in the NIT semifinals in New York City tonight. Joe Medley will be handling the game while I hold down the fort over at football.

Double Down on National Sports:
Japan claimed its second World Baseball Classic title Monday night by beating Korea in extra innings in what was an exciting affair.

Josh McDaniels: Jay Cutler is 'our' quarterback. I'm still not convinced. I think, at this point, too much has happened to keep these two sides together. I also think this will end in a draft-day trade. The NFL is also further softening the defensive rules.

The Browns will have an open quarterback competition, which was the only logical way to do things, but is probably bad news for Derek Anderson.

Around the League:
Florida hasn't forgotten about all of Tennessee coach Lane Kiffin's comments and antics this offseason. ESPN
Nick Saban's pre-spring thoughts: The team needs improvement everywhere. Ian R. Rappaport. Ian also reports that Alabama has received permission to speak with VCU coach Anthony Grant, who figures to be a hot commodity this year. Rappaport
Bobby Petrino has laid out his spring plans. The Democrat-Gazette
Jodie Meeks is OK with Billy Gillispie after the Kentucky coach benched him in a win over Notre Dame. The Herald-Leader
Missouri coach Mike Anderson chose not to address reports that both Georgia and Alabama will pursue him at season's end. The AJC
Five important questions as Mississippi State begins a new era: The Clarion-Ledger

Today's News
The Good:

A new video game system, OnLive, is on its way. CNN

The Bad:
Contminated equipment might have resulted in several thousand veterans getting exposed to HIV or hepatitis. CNN

The Absurd:
Comedy Central star Stephen Colbert, host of The Colbert Report, might have a NASA toilet named after him. MSNBC

Ending on a High Note:
Tired of going to Vegas for your sports gambling? A New Jersey lawsuit might legalize it in all 50 states. ESPN

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