Before anyone asks… No, I have exactly no idea what Chip Kelly is doing to and with the Eagles’ roster now that he has final authority with regard to player decisions. Eagles’ fans have to hope that he has a firm and feasible plan in mind to maintain a winning record for the team in future years because from the outside it surely looks as if he has jettisoned some talented players without having players already under contract to replace them.
I was surprised last year when the Eagles released DeSean Jackson but thought there were other receivers on the team that could “fill in the blanks”. However, I do not see anyone who can replace LeSean McCoy on the roster – Darren Sproles cannot survive 16 games as the feature back for an NFL team at this point in his career – and with Jeremy Maclin on the free agent market, I have no idea where the deep passing threat will be next year.
Philadelphia sports fans have “GMs” for their 3 major teams who are mysterious:
Chip Kelly – not the GM but the guy who makes personnel decisions – is wheeling and dealing and ridding the team of many of its best players.
Sam Hinkie – the Sixers’ GM – trades players for draft picks as if draft picks were worth the weight of the draftee in platinum. The Sixers’ roster is non-competitive despite the furious dealing activity in the front office.
Reuben Amaro Jr. – Phillies’ GM – has a sclerotic team with a few assets that may have trade value but he seems constitutionally unable to pull the trigger on a deal.
If you could blend all three of these guys and then pour out the new biological mixture, Philly fans might have three “normal” GMs…
The Syracuse basketball program is much more of a mess than I thought it was when the first allegations of eligibility manipulation surfaced. My first reaction was that a player or two might have taken a few “sham courses’ to keep their averages up and that would be no big deal in the grand scheme of the interface between college academics and college athletics. It surely seems as if I underestimated the depth and breadth of the problems there.
Specifically, Jim Boeheim has been cited for his lack of any oversight or constructive action to assure academic compliance with NCAA rules and he has been suspended for 9 ACC conference games next year. In addition, there will be scholarship reductions for the next few years. Now, there are columns written on either side of the questions:
Should Jim Boeheim resign or not?
Will Jim Boeheim resign or not?
I do not read minds and so I have no idea if Jim Boeheim is even considering resigning. What I am fairly confident will not happen is that Syracuse is not going to fire him until or unless the university administration is severely pressured to do so by wealthy alums who threaten to withhold annual giving funds. Whether you like Jim Boeheim or not, he is an institution at Syracuse having been there as a player for 4 years in the 60s and as a coach since 1969. That represents 50 years of association with Syracuse; the university will need to use diplomacy should it think that it needs to part ways with this alum.
More interesting than the mental gyrations some are going through with regard to Jim Boeheim’s future is another aspect of this whole mess. The investigation seems to have uncovered improprieties that go back an entire decade and that leads me to ask a simple question:
How come the super-sleuths in the NCAA “Compliance Division” never had a sniff of anything even slightly off-track for all of that time?
Yet again, the NCAA “investigators” knew nothing of a member school violating its sacred rules until such time as someone spoke up about what was going on. The folks who enforce the rules for the NCAA demonstrated one more time a level of incompetence that would get any coach or Athletic Director fired in a heartbeat.
Now, because the “Compliance Folks” are demonstrated bozos, let me pose another question:
When Jim Boeheim is suspended for those 9 ACC games next year, who in the NCAA investigative department is going to assure that he does not get paid for those games anyway?
A suspension is a form of punishment. Missing 9 games and getting paid for doing so is a vacation. “Punishment” and “Vacation” are not synonyms.
I am not saying he will be paid for those 9 games – but I am saying that I doubt the NCAA has any real way to monitor/track that situation.
Finally, let me close again today with a cogent observation from Bob Molinaro of the Hampton Roads Virginian-Pilot:
“Preposterous palaver: As we wade into March Madness, the blather from ESPN’s talking heads would be a little more credible if every sideline drill sergeant wasn’t portrayed as an incredible motivator, committed educator, wonderful family man and someone who is only looking out for the welfare of his players. Not a dubious character in the bunch, in other words. College coaching: only geniuses and saints need apply.”
But don’t get me wrong, I love sports………