Pigs respect Smart

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HOOVER, Alabama – Georgia coach Kirby Smart returned from last year’s season opener at the University of Arkansas in awe of the Razorbacks and coach Sam Pittman, his former lineman offensive, making his debut as a varsity head coach.

Georgia, down 7-5 at halftime, escaped with a late-third quarter flurry and won 37-10, but Smart noted the toughness and Hogs coordinator Barry Odom, former coach -Chief of Missouri, and Kendal Briles.

“I have a lot of respect for Sam as a person, a trainer and a man,” Smart told SEC Media Days on Tuesday. “They did a great job against us last year. They have an amazing staff.

“He’s got a really near-perfect recipe between his defensive coordinator and his offensive coordinator, whom he trusts a lot. They’re both different. They both do a good job.… A lot of respect for Barry. his years in Missouri we have to be close. He’s playing a very difficult defensive pattern to attack. “

The Razorbacks travel to face Georgia club Smart on October 2.

“I think they have a lot of players coming back,” said Smart. “Someone told me there are more seniors in the conference than anyone else, which if you have a lot of seniors look at the track record. These are the most successful teams.”

$ 1 million?

Alabama coach Nick Saban made the news Tuesday and he is not expected to show up at Hoover until this morning.

Speaking at the Texas High School Coaches Association convention, Saban said quarterback Bryce Young’s approval figure was huge, according to 247Sports.

“Our QB has already approached ungodly numbers and he hasn’t even played yet,” Saban said. “If I tell you what it is … it’s almost seven digits.”

Young signed with CAA, one of the strongest agencies in professional sports, to manage its marketing deals as players began benefiting from name, image and likeness deals starting July 1.

“You just blew me away,” Ole Miss Coach Lane Kiffin said when told of Saban’s remarks. “It’s amazing. He won a million bucks and hasn’t started a game yet? Wow, I don’t even know what to say to that, but it’s great for him.”

Kiffin said players can capitalize on their skills and market value.

“I think it’s very difficult trying to figure out how these things happen and what is legal and what is not in all of this,” he said. “I was asked earlier about this. I said I was delighted. I wouldn’t want to be compliance departments. But a million dollars, phew.”

Kiffin returned to the subject later.

“He’s already getting $ 1 million?” said Kiffin. “He doesn’t need to play next year against us then.

It’s okay, man. I mean, it’s mind blowing. “

Meet J-Lo

Kentucky defensive end Josh Paschal brought a laugh to the media on Tuesday when he recounted his “Today Show” experience, which included meeting singer and actress Jennifer Lopez.

Paschal made the appearance to promote cancer awareness as a melanoma survivor.

He said his mother had turned into a fan of Lopez, who came and went in the guest lounge on the set of “Today Show.”

“She goes up the stairs and I look up,” said Pascale. “I was looking at the stairs, and I look up, and we make full eye contact. And she winked at me. I hope that wink was real because I’ve been telling this story for ever. it happened. When I tell you, I melted, I melted. “

Who are you?

Georgia coach Kirby Smart said he had a humble experience at a restaurant in Augusta, Georgia with his children earlier this month. The family was in town for their son’s baseball tournament.

Smart said several people came to pick up his autograph and that he “held a baby, took a picture, made several autographs.

“And I asked an old lady to come over to our table and say, ‘You must be a famous person. “I said, ‘No ma’am, I sure don’t think so.'”

The woman asked if Smart was a professional golfer or a NASCAR driver, to which Smart said no.

“Right now my kids are laughing a bit, and the last one she said, ‘Are you a track star? And my daughter almost spat out her food and just thought it was hilarious.

“At this point I said, ‘No ma’am, I coach football at the University of Georgia.’ I always say humility is a week away. “

SoCal spices

Southern California players dot Power 5 club rosters across the country, including Georgia quarterback JT Daniels, Alabama quarterback Bryce Young, Clemson quarterback DJ Uiagalelei, the Ohio quarterback CJ Stroud and Ole Miss quarterback Matt Corral.

Daniels was asked what he thought of Young, presumably the Crimson Tide starter.

“He’s a stallion,” Daniels said. “He’s a star player.”

Betting site BetOnline installed Daniels as the Heisman Trophy favorite with odds of 5 to 1 on Tuesday. The other former SoCal schoolchildren were in the top eight, with Young and Stroud tied for third at 10-1 (behind Spencer Rattler of Oklahoma at 7-1), followed by Uiagalelei at 11-1 and Corral tied. seventh with Kedon Slovis of USC. at 16-1.

No on the 9th

Kentucky coach Mark Stoops didn’t exactly answer the question when asked if he was interested in adding a ninth league game. Previously at Hoover, Florida coach Dan Mullen and Georgia coach Kirby Smart argued for a nine-game SEC schedule and Alabama’s Nick Saban has backed him for years.

“I was wondering if people had watched last year,” Stoops said, referring to the schedule for all of the SEC’s 10-game conferences. “The league, there have been quite a few people who have struggled, if anyone has taken note of that. So that’s how I feel.”

Nine SEC teams finished .500 or worse and only five teams had winning records, including Auburn at 6-5.

Stoops later approached the 10-game schedule again, saying: “Look long and hard at what this has done to half of our league.

“It could have been easy for our team to fold the tent, and they didn’t. So I have great respect for them and the coaches in our program.”

Nobody better

Ole Miss Coach Lane Kiffin praised the work of Alabama coach Nick Saban, her former boss, three times as the final coach on the podium on Tuesday.

“To do what he does today and every year you say something that upsets him and kills him and drives him crazy, and then we have to deal with that,” Kiffin said with a laugh. . “So I don’t know what the story is this year. It will be something that you did to lose too many staff or the quarterback or whatever, but he just finds a way, and it starts with the recruitment.”

Later, Kiffin was asked about the tweets to Saban.

“I think it’s all fun,” he said. “I think you know guys you are enough to cover us up, how much I respect him, how grateful I am that he hired me and the three years spent with him and this that it has done for my career.

“But respect – like I said, no one has done it like they’ve ever done. With scholarships, it should just be an asterisk of what has been done before, without disrespecting people. other coaches. “

From USC to the SEC

Georgia quarterback TJ Daniels and Tennessee wide receiver Velus Jones were previously teammates in Southern California.

Now they’re both at the SEC and were at media days on Tuesday.

Daniels, who graduated from high school a year earlier, said he spent the spring before his first-year visiting practice.

“I would come to USC and spend the weekend or spend most of the week there watching spring practice and trying to learn, and I stayed with Velus,” said Daniels, from Irvine. , in California. “So Hairy and I have been really good friends since I was 17. He’s just a really good guy.”

Jones said he and Daniels spend a lot of time together.

“Me and JT, we hung out a lot, played video games together,” Jones said. “He was still in my apartment. I couldn’t get him out. I tried a lot to kick him out.”

Spurrier Award

Former Florida and South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier gave his name and support to an award sponsored by the Football Writers Association of America.

The Steve Spurrier Award will be presented annually to the best freshman coach in college football. The award has been given since Ty Willingham of Notre Dame won it in 2002, but it has not had a namesake until now.

Spurrier, who has a record 23 SEC Media Days appearances, is the last SEC East coach to defeat Alabama, with a 35-21 victory over the Crimson Tide on October 9, 2010. Since then, the Tide of Nick Saban is 30-0. against opponents SEC East, including 6-0 in the SEC Championship game with three wins over Florida, two wins over Georgia and one win over Missouri, and a 26-23 overtime win over Georgia in the game national championship 2017.

Explosions

Fans who watch the stream from the main media room of SEC Media Days may occasionally notice loud background noises.

These laughs and loud words come from the SEC Network ensemble, which is positioned at the back of the ballroom housing the main media.

Although room dividers are available between rooms, they are not rolled up to separate the two spaces.

Airtime

When longtime Arkansas Democrat-Gazette writer Bob Holt asked Kentucky coach Mark Stoops about coaching turnover in the SEC and his status as the league’s second-starting coach, Stoops rose to a personal level.

Stoops said it was great to see Holt in person again and always watch him ask questions of every coach on media days and “get that airtime.”

Holt replied, laughing, “I’m trying to grow my brand.”

Additional point

ESPN announced on Tuesday that it has reached an agreement on multi-year extensions with Joey Galloway, Dari Nowkhah, Peter Burns and Alyssa Lang. Galloway, a former Ohio State and NFL wide receiver, has been a 10-year ESPN veteran. Burns and Nowkhah have anchored “SEC Now” on the SEC network since its launch in August 2014, and Lang joined the show’s office in the fall of 2018.


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