Joe Biddle’s Sunday Notes: Nov. 25, 2012

JOE BIDDLE: Sunday Notes: July 7, 2013 (Image 1)

Random ruminations while wondering whatever happened to Chris Leak…

  • The post-season bowl games picture should be clearer after Saturday's college football games.

    I believe Vanderbilt will be in play in the Gator Bowl as a best case scenario, but more likely in the mix of the Music City Bowl, Liberty Bowl or the Compass Bowl in Birmingham.

    The Gator Bowl has the sixth pick among SEC teams and I think Vanderbilt fans would travel to Florida in December. When it gets down to the lower level of bowl eligible teams, bowls factor in one basic premise: how many fans/tickets can you bring/sell?  They don't care if you're ranked or how many wins you have. They are all about selling tickets.

    The Music City Bowl has the seventh pick while Memphis and Birmingham share the eighth pick. I guess that means a representative from each bowl would engage in a rib eating contest (dry ribs, of course) to see who gets to pick first.

    The Independence Bowl in Shreveport has the 109th and final SEC bowl commitment. It would match up an ACC team if there will be an eligible team left by then.

  • It's interesting to see how SEC teams fared against ranked teams during the season. Going into Saturday's games, Alabama had the best record (4-1) against ranked teams when they played them.
  • Georgia was 3-1 in Top 25 games while LSU and Texas A&M had 3-2 records.

    Kentucky and Tennessee were 0-5 and Vanderbilt was 0-3.

  • While Tennessee fans are holding hope against hope that former NFL coach Jon Gruden will be calling plays at Neyland Stadium next season, the wiseguys in Vegas beg to differ.

    Bovada is giving 3-1 odds that Gruden will be coaching Carolina or Philadelphia next season.

    Some odds of interest in the NFL include the Titans, who are 500-1 to win the Super Bowl. No surprise there.

    They have the Texans the odds on favorites at 5-1. The Patriots and Broncos are 11/2, the 49ers are 13/2 and the Atlanta Falcons are 9-1.

  • The new Tennessee football coach has his work cut out for him.

    While the Vols will tune up against Austin Peay and Western Kentucky, they then travel to Oregon and Florida in back-to-back road games, Sept. 14 and 21.

    They go to Alabama Oct. 26, to Missouri and Kentucky. They have seven home games.

    Vanderbilt's away games are at South Carolina, Massachusetts, Texas A&M, Florida and Tennessee. The non-conference games are against Austin Peay, Wake Forest, Alabama-Birmingham and UMass.

  • Fourteen new former SEC players will be honored at Saturday's SEC Championship Game in Atlanta.

    The new class of SEC Legends includes former Tennessee wide receiver Peerless Price (1995-98) and former Vanderbilt linebacker Hunter Hillenmeyer (1999-02).

    Kevin Mawae will be among the honorees, representing LSU, where he was an outstanding offensive lineman before going on to a solid NFL career. He completed his pro career as the Titans center. Mawae and his family now live here.

  • Cy Young winner R.A. Dickey is the subject of a documentary, “Knuckleball,''  by FilmBuff, an independent film distributor in New York City.

    It was released in September in theatres, iTunes and other Video on Demand outlets.

    The film follows Dickey from spring training through the regular season. In it he meets with fellow knuckleballers, including Tim Wakefield, Phil Niekro and others who helped Dickey develop the unique pitch that allowed him to be successful in a second attempt to stick in the major leagues.

    Dickey will be at a 7 p.m. screening this Thursday at the Belcourt Theatre. He will engage in a Q & A session following the screening. For more information, go to the Belcourt's website.

  • Notre Dame fans got their longtime wish when the Irish punched their ticket to the BCS Championship Game by defeating Southern Cal.

    All that is left is for the polls and computers to decide which team the Irish will play. It should be the SEC Championship Game champion, either Alabama or Georgia, both worthy opponents.

    Wouldn't this have been a perfect season to have a four-game playoff? You would have Notre Dame, the SEC champion, Oregon and Kansas State. Four great teams with great players and great coaches. Oh, well.

  • You have to admire the courage it took for Seigel quarterback Brent Stockstill to play against perennial champion Maryville in a 6-A semi-final game Friday night.

    The son of MTSU Coach Rick Stockstill, Brent has a partially torn ACL, which will require surgery. His family discussed the pros and cons of him playing in the game before they decided he would play.

    Stockstill was spectacular (23 of 33, 376 yards, four TDs) given the circumstances, but Siegel let a lead get away late in the game and lost, 47-43.

    Brent is also a baseball player, a left-handed pitcher and outfielder. He has several options in football, but it's unlikely he will play at MTSU.

    As an aside, Siegel's offensive coordinator is former Tullahoma, Tennessee, Memphis State and Titans quarterback Steve Mathews.

    Maryville's defensive coordinator is former Overton, Tennessee kicker Jimmy Gaylor out of Flatrock.

  • A panel consisting of ESPN college football journalists vote on a weekly poll, ranking Heisman Trophy candidates.

    The latest poll ranked Texas A&M quarterback Johnny “Football'' Manziel No. 1 with 66 points. He would become the first freshman to win the award, but the numbers he is putting up against SEC defenses are off the chart.

    Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te'o is second with 53 points with Kansas State QB Colin Klein a distant third at 39 points.

    Clemson QB Tajh Boyd was sixth. Remember, he had committed to Tennessee until Lane Kiffin was hired and told him he wouldn't be a fit in Kiffin's pro style offense.

  • I have no idea whether Kentucky AD Mitch Barnhart will consider San Jose State Coach Mike MacIntyre to replace Joker Phillips, but he would be a solid choice.

    Mike grew up in the SEC when his father, George, was head coach at Vanderbilt. He later coached at Ole Miss and Duke with David Cutcliffe and under Bill Parcells with the Dallas Cowboys.

    Mike has done a great job turning San Jose State from a program that couldn't win, into one that beat Louisiana Tech Saturday night to become 10-2 on the season.

    When he was hired, WAC school had no budget for the football coaches to recruit in the spring. MacIntyre had several camps in Southern California and signed a number of current players from those camps.

    After his first two seasons they were 6-19. After winning a wild 52-43 shootout over Louisiana Tech Saturday night, they improved to 10-2. It is the first time the Trojans have won 10 games in a season since 1987. They are 6-1 in the WAC, trailing only Utah State, which is 5-0.

  • Tennessee's one-game head coach Jim Chaney knows wide receiver/kick returner Cordarrelle Patterson is special. Chaney has seen Patterson every day in practice and games.

    “He's as good as I've seen at what he does with the ball in his hands,'' Chaney said after the Kentucky game. “The sky is the limit for CP. He understands he has a lot of growth left to do.

    “He also has a very fine arrogance about him. He knows he's pretty damn good. I know he's pretty damn good.''

    Got a sports news tip? Contact Sports Columnist Joe Biddle at

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