Random ruminations while wondering whatever happened to Dale Ellis. …
- Tennessee football commitments will be busy this week in various prep All-American games.
It kicks off with the Under Armour All-American Game in Orlando. It will be on ESPN at 3 p.m. Thursday. UT-bound players include Dillon Bates and Aaron Medley.
Next will be the Offense/Defense All-American Bowl. It will be Friday at 4 p.m. on ESPN3. Those participating include Vic Wharton, Daniel Helm, Derek Barnett, Cortez McDowell, Charley Moseley, Emmanuel Moseley and Cory Thomas.
The annual Army All-American Game is set for Saturday at noon. NBC will televise it, which is WSMV-Channel 4 locally. Its roster includes Station Camp's Josh Malone, Todd Kelly Jr. from Knoxville, Kevin Mouton and Beech's Jalen Hurd, who will not play while still rehabbing from shoulder surgery.
- Is Titans wide receiver Kenny Britt delusional, or living in a dream world? Today will be his final game as a Titan, and he has been a huge disappointment after being a first round pick from Rutgers.
If anything Britt has a highly inflated opinion of himself, especially after catching just 11 passes for 96 yards in 12 games this season.
Britt has been passed on the Titans' depth chart by second-year receiver Kendall Wright and rookie Justin Hunter. Yet Britt was willing to bet he would not only be picked up by another team, but become its No. 1 receiver. I'll be the first one to take that bet.
As for this season, Britt is known more for two things – costly penalties and dropped passes.
- I hate to be the bearer of bad news to all you single guys out there, but LPGA golfer Natalie Gulbis is off the market. The 30-year-old Gulbis has tied the knot with former Yale quarterback Josh Rodermail. She frequently played Nashville on the tour stop here. Rodermail is owner of Power Balance athletic wristbands.
Gulbis has won $4.8 million on the LPGA Tour, but largely has underachieved on the course. She is a popular marketing/modeling target and has earned a lot off the course.
It was reported that Gulbis tweeted the news: “Mr. and Mrs. Best Day Ever.'' It took place on an undisclosed beach.
- Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston showed up in a tuxedo to read the Top Ten on Letterman.
Some of the things you hear in the huddle:
No. 10 – Is this about football?
No. 1 – How many of you guys won the Heisman?
Some others I found funny – Who's wearing perfume?
Lets win this for Kim Jong-un's uncle.
Is anybody here a notary public?
- There is a billboard on Highway 183 near Austin that has a picture of former Texas Coach Mack Brown. Only two words were needed to capture Brown's stay at Texas – Class Act.
It's amazing how close Brown and former Tennessee Coach Phillip Fulmer's careers paralleled each other. Even down to where they grew up, Brown in Cookeville and Fulmer in Winchester.
- East Tennessee State is reviving a football program after giving up the sport years ago.
Scott Carter is currently the director of the Vols Tennessee fund, but is reported to be high on the list to become the Buccaneers' athletics director. Carter is a Knoxville native.
- Our WKRN news and sports maven, Dawn Davenport has been keeping up with Santa Claus's travel schedule.
She started off doing sideline reporting Dec. 21 from the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl in Boise, Idaho. Don't let this out, but D-square wanted everyone to know it was cold in Boise.
Dawn will also be at the Cotton Bowl for the Heart of Dallas Bowl between North Texas and UNLV. That will be on ESPNU Jan. 1.
She completes her post-season bowl assignments Jan. 4 with ESPN's telecast of the BBVA Compass Bowl in Birmingham's once legendary Legion Field. She will do sideline reporting for the Vanderbilt-Houston game.
- Don't tell me NFL rookies don't know the right answer to hello. Giants rookie Cooper Taylor realized Super Bowl XLVIII would be played at MetLife Stadium.
Taylor and his girlfriend, Susan Carlson, agreed to rent out their 2-bedroom 1,000-square foot apartment in Rutherford, N.J. It's only .6 miles from the Super Bowl site.
They are asking $9,000 for Super Bowl week. She is a real estate broker, who will handle negotiations. Taylor is a fifth-round pick out of Richmond. He is making $400,000 as a rookie.
“We thought it would be the best time to get out of the city and go on vacation because that week will be like a madhouse,'' Taylor said on The Post Game. “I am definitely disappointed that we are not playing in it. It would make it a lot more fun.''
- Our condolences to the Bowden family, especially former Florida State Coach Bobby Bowden's son, Jeff, and his family.
Jeff's son, Taylor Jeffrey, was one of two victims who died in a one-vehicle accident on Christmas morning. He was 23 and a recent graduate of Florida State.
“Our whole family had just celebrated Christmas together in Panama City, as well as celebrated T.J.'s graduation from Florida State just three weeks ago,'' Bobby Bowden said in a statement. “We will cherish those last memories together with T.J. forever.''
Their car flipped into a small, water-filled ditch off a central Florida road in Polk County near Winter Haven. A third man was rescued alive after spending hours in water up to his neck.
This is not the first time tragedy to hit the Bowdens. In September, Bobby Bowden's grandson, 15-year-old Madden, and former son-in-law John Allen Madden, were killed when their car was hit by a utility truck being used to help restore power outages caused by Hurricane Frances.
- Chargers rookie wide receiver Keenan Allen is on a hot streak, catching five touchdown passes in his last three games. There was a point early in the season then the Cal rookie was ready to give up football.
After getting no snaps in the first game, Allen called his mother and told her he was about to quit. He had always been a starter through college and his mother encouraged him to stick with it.
The third round pick said he wanted to pursue a career as a music producer. The following week, two of the Chargers starting wide receivers, Malcolm Floyd and Denario Alexander suffered injuries and Allen moved into the starting lineup.
So he has gone from considering quitting football to a candidate for Offensive Rookie of the Year. Just proves Mama knows best.
- It seems Vanderbilt wide receiver Jordan Matthews still has to convince NFL scouts he is a first round draft choice.
Most pre-draft prognosticators tab Matthews as in the lower part of the top 10 and a probably second round selection. He is trailing Clemson WR Sammy Watkins, Texas A&M's Mike Evans, USC's Marqise Lee, FSU's Kelvin Benjamin, Arizona State's Jaelen Strong and Penn State's Allen Robinson.
One source says the 6-3, 205-pound Matthews lacks speed and explosiveness to become a first round pick. One mock draft has him going No. 45 in the second round to the Jets. Another one has him going No. 27 in the first round.
Hey, Matthews proved a lot of people wrong when he came to Vanderbilt as a two-star recruit. He caught 107 passes for 1,334 yards and five TDs as a senior. I'll predict he will stand out at the Combine.
Contact wkrn.com Sports Columnist Joe Biddle at firstname.lastname@example.org.