spoiler alert: i linked this
Hey, it's been a good couple of months here at MGoBlog. First we hire this guy Hoke, then he hires this guy Mattison, then they reel in a pretty sweet class. Next thing we know, Belein gets the team into the Tournament. Red gets his boys one period away from a national title. And then the spring game is, well, the spring game. The Girls Softball Team destroys all competition on its way to the conference title. Brandon recently announces that Lacrosse is going D-1 Team Sport. Top that off with a ridonkulous string of success in the recruiting department, not to mention the delicious schadenfreude of the media bombing of Columbus and life is just plain old good here at MGoBlog.
And so, we must celebrate. With a shirt.*
Now available in all sizes here. Get yours now because we're sure to see puppet goodness this fall.
*(Note: Shirt does NOT actually play the Hawaiian War Chant.)
Worst three years ever!
Is that headline sufficiently catchy?
Yesterday I decided to view the past three years -- and more -- through the NFL draft. CBS Sportsline has data back to 1967, so we can look at Elliot through Carr. (None of RichRod's guys have reached the draft stage.) I found that the number of picks for the most recent three-year stretch ('09 to '11, covering the '08 to '10 seasons), seven, is the lowest since the one ending in 1986, when there were six. Only one other interval (interestingly, the one concluding in 1985) is worse (five picks). The one ending in 1970 also had seven.
Considering only high (rounds one to three) draftees, the last three years look even worse. There were two high picks (Graham in 1st round, Mouton in 2nd round). This has never happened in the "modern" (Bo and beyond) era. The other low points, by that measure, were three straight (ones ending in the years '89, '90, and '91) series around the Bo-to-Mo transition and a couple in the '70s.
Here are the details: https://spreadsheets.google.com/spreadsheet/pub?key=0AkEbjH02DNzxdG9LN2V...
Next to the first draftee for each year you'll see four columns: * Total number of picks for that year. * Total number of picks for that year and the two prior years. * Total number of "high" picks for that year. * Total number of "high" picks for that year and the two prior years.
Old-timers (and everyone else), be sure to look at the high-pick numbers for the three-year intervals ending from '72 to '74. By the measure of the NFL draft (which, as I'll note later, had fewer spots back then), those were some insanely talented teams. Recruiting was arguably never better. It's worth noting that Bump Elliot should get a good chunk of the credit, since his last class would have finished in '73. Let's hope that Brady can do something similar. He's off to a good start.
Feel free to blame Rodriguez (lousy player development and retention) / Carr (cupboard management) / both for the last three years, depending on your preference. I'll step aside for the moment. :)
Note: Since the draft is currently seven rounds, I ignored all picks past that round in old drafts. I did not account for expansion (Bucs and Seahawks in the mid-'70s, Panthers and Jags sometime after that), so the numbers from (say) the early '70s, which are already impressive, should be considered in that light. (Being drafted in the first round with fewer teams is a rarer achievement.)
Nothing too drastic, but New York DB Wayne Morgan is announcing on June 2nd now instead of June 1st.
I think he covers it all quite nicely.
On how Delany's proposal makes a lot of sense, and doesn't really hurt anyone. I'm bad at blockquoting but read some excerpts below. Also, it's not a ton of new ideas, some of the same things that Brian has suggested in fact, but it's really good that this is a front page article at the WWL, might actually help things come to fruition. There's even a shot of the Big House.
"The power broker -- Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany -- suggested a plan that would bridge the growing financial gap between the value of a scholarship and the actual sticker price of going to school. That average estimated annual gap of about $3,000 would be given to the D-I player to help defray the costs of, say, transportation, clothing, laundry and pepperoni pizzas. It works out to a whopping $8.22 a day."
"I never used the words, 'play-for-pay,"' says Delany. "I never used the word, 'compensation.' All I said is, 'Can we have a discussion? We'd like to have a discussion about providing a grant-in-aid that corresponds to the cost of education.'
"I never once mentioned that we thought it would undermine cheating. The kinds of comments, and the kinds of headlines, and the kinds of leads are so far removed and so far from what was said, it's pretty hard to understand. … I don't think in any of our discussions internally, or any of the discussions with our staff, or any of the thoughts in my mind was it ever thought about in terms of Ohio State, or agent issues, or any regulatory issues."
In its simplest terms, Delany's proposal is a cost-of-living adjustment for D-I scholarship athletes. It would make college life a little bit easier and, given the revenue the players generate for their universities, a little fairer. But nobody is going to buy a yacht with the additional money.
My favorite anxiety-filled response from those who instantly opposed the idea: Providing scholarship athletes with a "cost of education" increase would give such conferences as the Big Ten a recruiting advantage.
Delany's response: They're right, it would. After all, it only makes sense that a recruit might be more tempted to sign with a conference whose institutions can afford to put that $8.22 in his or her pocket each day.
But it's not like all conferences are created equal, or ever will be. The Big Ten, the Southeastern Conference, the Big 12, the Pac-10, the ACC and the Big East already enjoy recruiting advantages over other conferences. Their stadiums, arenas and practice facilities are larger and more luxurious. Their geographic footprints are wider. Their TV contracts are more lucrative. Their coaches' salaries are higher. Their tradition, Q ratings and alumni bases are more pronounced.