JOE BIDDLE: Sunday Notes: Jan. 5, 2014

Random ruminations while wondering whatever happened to Lang Wiseman. …

  • As Mike Munchak moves on to the next chapter of his life, he has remained a class act throughout his career as a Pro Football Hall of Fame player, offensive line coach and head coach of the Titans the past three seasons.

    “This is a day I hoped would never come, but there is a reason for everything. Words cannot express the sadness for leaving this organization that I have been a part of for over 30 years,'' Munchak said in a parting statement. “My family and I would like to thank the (Bud) Adams family for all of the opportunities that they have given me over the last three decades.

    “I also would like to thank my players and staff for their on-going support and I wish them all the best. Also, to the fans that have hung with me, I want to say, ‘thanks.' ''

    Munchak epitomizes the ultimate professional, on and off the field.

  • If Louisville's Charlie Strong takes the Texas offer to replace Mack Brown as expected, there will be a much different personality sitting in the coach's office than Brown.

    Strong has his strengths. Recruiting and coaching defense are the main ones. His players play hard for him. But he doesn't have an outgoing, never met a stranger, personality that Brown did. He doesn't like the media duties he has at Louisville. Texas demands in that area will be much larger.

    The Louisville media felt Strong never connected with them. His interview skills seem to make him uncomfortable. One Louisville writer had never been in Strong's office just for a get-to-know-you off the record talk. Practices are off limits to the media.

    Texas was smitten with how his teams beat BCS bowl teams Florida and Miami the past two years. They were infatuated with UL quarterback Teddy Bridgewater. I'm not sure you base your decision on two games.

    From a distance, I don't think it will turn out to be a good fit for either side. There are a lot of politics tied to the Texas job and Strong is not a politician. The only way Strong can be successful at Texas will be to win conference and national championships. And with his recruiting skills in that talent rich state and Florida, he could pull that off.

    But as Brown found out, you have to keep feeding that monster every season.

    As of Saturday, it was reported Strong was waiting to accept the Texas job until after he told Louisville AD Tom Jurich face-to-face and Jurich was on vacation in Colorado. Remember, Strong told Tennessee officials he was taking the Vols job offer, but got cold feet the next morning.

    If you stack the resume's up against each other, Vanderbilt's James Franklin is more of the total package than Strong. And Franklin has done it at Vanderbilt, a much more difficult program to be successful in than Louisville.

  • It has been reported that Franklin will interview with Penn State today. It is the only opening he would be interested in, as he is a Pennsylvania native.

    Franklin would find it easier to win in the Big Ten at Penn State than at Vanderbilt in the SEC. He would bring the Penn State fan base together and energize the program throughout. A tireless worker, Franklin has exceled at Vanderbilt, done things no other coach before him in history managed to do. He could bring back the winning tradition at Penn State and hunt for national championships.

    Vanderbilt has increased his package to the point Franklin is thought to be just over $4 million a year. That's unheard of at Vanderbilt and he and his family have a comfort level with the Nashville area and Vanderbilt. He doesn't seem to have a sense of urgency about going anywhere else.

  • Remember when the Titans let running back LeGarrette Blount get away? They didn't want to pay him the money.

    Against the Bills on the final regular season game for the New England Patriots, Blount put up 334 all-purpose yards. It included a career high 189 yards rushing and two touchdowns.

    He also gained 245 yards on two kickoff returns.

    In 16 games Blount had 772 yards on 153 carries, averaging 48.3 yards a game. He averaged 5.0 yards a carry and scored seven TDs. He finished with 494 yards on kickoff returns.

  • Among those who were inducted in the 2013 Polynesian Hall of Fame was former Titans center Kevin Mawae.

    Mawae has moved from the Nashville area back to Louisiana, where he played at LSU.

  • WKRN-Channel 2's morning show personality Dawn Davenport served as sideline reporter for the Vanderbilt-Houston BBVA Compass Bowl game in Birmingham.

    The former Channel 2 sportscaster is not just another pretty face. She knows what she is doing and gives solid information. Don't be surprised if she doesn't get a network gig in the near future.

  • When the offensive starters were introduced during the Colts-Chiefs AFC Wild Card playoff game, Indianapolis wide receiver Da'Rick Rogers adlibbed some.

    Rogers played at Tennessee before finishing his career playing for Watson Brown at Tennessee Tech.

    Rogers looked in the camera, said, “Da'Rick Rogers. Tennessee Tech. Vol for Life.''

  • One unnamed AFC coach compares South Carolina defensive lineman Jadeveon Clowney to former All-Pro receiver Randy Moss.

    CBS Sports quoted the coach: “Jadeveon Clowney doesn't have the same type of criminal record as Randy did at his age, but the dependence on natural ability and problematic effort concerns are very similar.

    “Difference is, he won't fall out of the top seven like Randy did.''

  • You think the Titans franchise is dysfunctional? Try the Browns. They fired their third head coach in the past four years. Rob Chudzinski is the latest victim, fired after a 4-12 record in just one season.

    A Browns player was quoted under anonymity by NFL Network writer Michael Silver. It wasn't very pretty.

    “We are so dysfunctional. These billionaires need to pick somebody and stick with them. These aren't girlfriends. You can't dump them if they (fail to please you) one time. Too many dominoes fall and (mess) things up when that happens.''

  • I've seen a lot of high school recruits stage their choice of colleges in a variety of fashions.

    Safety Jamal Adams had to have the most unique. He announced at the Under Armor All-American Game. Adams had his baby girl in his arms when he announced, “I am going to the University of LSU.''

    He later apologized to LSU fans on his Twitter account, saying he was nervous when he said it.

  • South Carolina Coach Steve Spurrier, whose team has posted three straight 11-win seasons after beating Wisconsin in the Capital One Bowl, reminded his fans that although they didn't win the SEC Championship but being “state champion ain't bad either.''

    So after Dabo Swinney's Clemson Tigers upset Ohio State he said, “We're the first team from South Carolina to win a BCS (bowl) game.''


    Contact Sports Columnist Joe Biddle at

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