Posted July 16th, 2009: 3:09 PM
FACT IS FEW PRIORITY SEATS OPENED THIS YEAR
Florida State's ticket office has been hit with a record number of request s by Seminole season ticket holders to relocate their seats. The list of seat change requests that is normally less than 200 pages was over 400 pages before the ticket office printer finally finished and better communication probably would have avoided the situation.
Posted July 9th, 2009: 2:38 PM
NIKE TO FINANCE OVERSEAS BASKETBALL TRIPS
We are releasing today that our men's and women's basketball programs will make overseas tours to play games this summer. The men will travel to Spain and about the same time the women will be taking off for South Africa.
Posted June 25th, 2009: 9:25 AM
DOUGLAS HAS RIGHT ANSWER THEN AND NOW
The NBA draft is right around the corner and I know all Florida State fans have their fingers crossed that beloved basketball star Toney Douglas will go high and to the right team. All that is certainly out of the fans control and the draft is close enough that it is really out of Toney's control now, but a small pre-draft entry in The Sporting News last week proves that Toney's head is still in the right place.
Posted June 18th, 2009: 3:25 PM
FACTS DON'T GET IN THE WAY OF A GOOD STORY
The media has been filled daily it seems with a report on the status of the NCAA Committee on Infractions' response to Florida State's notice of appeal. While it is natural and appropriate that the topic would be of critical interest to the media, the suggestion of a scheme cooked up between FSU and the NCAA to keep the document out of their hands is more than inaccurate - it's irresponsible.
All news sources as well as the authors of the legal action filed by media sources had access to the same document I have read dated November 2008 that spells out in - for once - plain English that the NCAA's own policies and procedures ONLY allow for this document to be posted on their Web-based custodial system.
The excerpt from the Infractions Appeals Committee's Policies and Procedures Guide says..."after the institution/individual has filed a notice of appeal; the institution/individual will be provided access to the custodial file through the Web-based custodian system." It goes on to say "These materials may only be reviewed by the individual and authorized representatives of the institution/individual (including legal counsel). Duplication of material is prohibited..."
The point is that this has been the NCAA's long-standing policy - a fact that seems to have been at best overlooked in many media reports as well as the legal action. Whether it is an appropriate process is fair debate but the tone of the lawsuit that includes the word "scheme" definitely suggests otherwise.
I'm told that before the age of the internet and the free flow of information between computers, the NCAA policy was that they would literally lay the documents out on a table at their offices in Overland Park, Kansas (now Indianapolis) and a representative of the school was allowed in the room to read them, but could leave with nothing.
So, FSU and the NCAA are getting beat up in the media and sued in the courts over a system that Florida State has no control over and one that has been in place for years at the NCAA.
One might suspect that would be an important point to include in the story. The motive for some of the media excluding it is a bigger question.
Posted June 10th, 2009: 3:22 PM
JUST THINK ABOUT IT - THREE NATIONAL TITLES IN A ROW
Posted June 1st, 2009: 9:53 AM
BASEBALL REGIONALS MAY BE FLORIDA STATE AT ITS BEST
Florida State hosted a baseball regional for the 27th time this past weekend and there may be no finer example of what Seminole Athletics, Florida State University and Tallahassee are all about than this nearly annual ritual.
First of all, it is no small achievement just getting an NCAA Regional. Your team has got to be very good, your stadium has to be rather nice, your town has to be perceived as accommodating and your reputation absolutely must be sterling. I am relatively certain the first three elements are true, but I can guarantee you that the last one is a fact. And the nice thing about that is there is plenty of credit to go around as to what makes an NCAA Regional in Tallahassee so special.
It must begin and probably really ends with the baseball itself. No program has been as consistently successful as Florida State's since the first Seminole pulled on spikes in 1946. But it takes more than a good baseball program.
The ballpark itself must meet the rather detailed examination of umpiring crews, visiting coaches and opposing fans. Not without its quirks, Dick Howser Stadium has managed to stay ahead of the national pack and is one of the finest overall facilities in the country. A nod of the cap to eager ground crews, volunteer tarp pullers who almost make you feel like you're missing the fun if you're not out there with them. And generous dugouts and top quality accessories make it a place that visiting teams like to, well, visit.
A good program and a nice park go a long way, but the atmosphere at Florida State games is what pushes us over the top. Where else in the country do home fans give an OPPOSING pitcher, who has just shutout their own beloved team sending them into the dreaded loser's bracket, a standing ovation? Just ask Bucknell's starter from last year against FSU. Where else could a pair of visiting players feel at ease enough to grab a wireless microphone and carry on a 10 minute imitation of the TV show Crocodile Hunter at the pitcher's mound during a rain delay? Where else gets a letter from a visiting radio announcer who admits that in 30 years of calling baseball he's never had more fun or seen a better atmosphere than he had at FSU - and that was after his team played just three games?
Opposing fans feel welcome at Dick Howser. Opposing teams feel like they have as good a chance as any other team in the bracket. Opposing coaches feel like there is someone ready to answer every question. And history would tell us that the NCAA feels this might just be college baseball at its best.
I can tell you that working the long hours of an NCAA baseball regional has been a labor of love for a long time for employees in Seminole Athletics.
So, a tip of the cap to 11 and a dugout full of stars for getting us here. A nod of approval to grounds crew and facility staff for the spit and polish. A salute to the fans that make it come alive, and a sincere thanks to the NCAA for letting us show off for yet another weekend.
Posted May 26th, 2009- 8:37 AM
NCAA May Clear Out The Lanes
A recent dinner with ACC dignitaries dating at least 50 years back found me at a table with ACC supervisor of basketball officials John Clougherty, who was a long time basketball official who has worked some of the most important games in college basketball history. It was both one of the longest and shortest dinners I've had in that it was to short to hear all his stories his on college basketball. It was too long because a former ACC basketball coach slipped into the chair next to him and proceeded to remind him of every controversial call made by him or any other official in the past 20 years. The latter is an exaggeration, but the former is true. Clougherty is that rare official with an engaging personality and quick wit who makes time just seem to fly by.
Granted, the ACC could find basketball talk to talk about in the middle of tie football in the fourth quarter, but it was interesting to hear the back and forth between coach and official and particularly timely as the newspapers carried stories when we returned of a couple of basketball rule changes one of this could have real impact.
Ask most officials what the toughest basketball call is and they'll admit it's the charge-block particularly around the basket. In fact, you hear it more in the NBA than around college hoops but floppers - i.e. defensive players who fly back arms flailing at the slightest contact - are among the least popular among those blowing the whistles. Well, help may be on the way. The Men's and Women's Basketball Rules Committee has forwarded a recommendation to the Playing Rules Oversight Panel scheduled to meet in June that would change the rule for contact under the basket. In layman's terms, the rule change would make it illegal for a secondary player to slide over in front of the rim to try to take a charge from a player he is not guarding.
The call would be easier in that just in front of the rim and under the basket any contact with a second defender would be block every time. Somehow, I'm guessing it won't be that clear cut--but it should be easier.
There is another proposed change in the relatively infrequent circumstance that a player is fouled and injured on the play to the point that they can't shoot the free throws. The current rule allows the coach of the team shooting the free throws to pick whichever of his players he/she would like to take the shots. The new proposal would leave the selection of the player to shoot the foul shots to the other coach and he would choose from the four remaining players on the court. Now, I'm no expert but this would seem to play into the hands of those coaches with the "make `em pay" philosophy.
I'm sure all will turn out well and there is no truth to the rumor that Leonard Hamilton has been talking with Dekoda Watson about walking on next year!
Posted May 19th, 2009 - 9:42 AM
NFL Draft Recap
Watching the proliferation of media stories and web content devoted to the NFL draft over the last two months left me realizing that two of the most inexact, clandestine and secretive elements of athletics - particularly football - seem to have fueled the most rabid following - college recruiting and the NFL draft.
I chuckled when I searched websites two days after the draft to see if I could find a ranking of who had a mock draft that came anywhere close to the real thing. It was pretty hard to come by. What I did find are the following quotes by the same NFL draft guru regarding our own Everette Brown. Two weeks before the draft, "one guy that did help himself by leaving college early is FSU's Everette Brown who could go as high as fifth in the draft and certainly will be selected in the first round." Now, the same person said the following on draft day following Brown's selection in the second round - "he (Brown) would have benefitted from staying in school another year. He would have been bigger and had better numbers going into the 2010 draft." Huh?
The truth is there are no experts on either the NFL draft or college football recruiting. It used to be just the guys at the barbershop or your neighbor down the street who fancied themselves as more in the know than anyone else, or at least you. Now it's electronic signatures like 49ersforever, or nothingbutnoles, or ACCguru on websites that purport the same level of insider stuff.
When any discussion of the NFL draft comes up I always remind myself that each of the teams has a vested interest in lying to one another, the player, the player's agent and sometimes even to people within their own organization. But being on the inside of college athletics, it is agonizing to see great players of outstanding character "slide" on draft day because the stop watch did not show the right time or his head did not quite reach where team's had hoped on the tape measure. Meanwhile, guys can have a reggae party on the 50 at the Combine or hold up a liquor store on the way out of town and as long as they were the right size and speed they apparently won't budge on those draft boards.
As for the college recruiting end of it, I like to remind Seminole fans that the highest drafted player we have ever had - ever had - came to FSU as a walk-on. In fact, Andre Wadsworth was so underweight as a junior in high school that his own teammates wondered if he was playing the right sport.
It is truly ironic that the two times in the life of a football player when he needs the clearest head and most reliable information are the exact times in which the drone from experts is the loudest and the incoming information is most suspect. The senior year of high school and the junior year of college can be a nightmarish time for a prospect truly trying to determine the best future for himself. One can only hope that they don't rely too much on the experts to help them make these heavy weight calls.
Oh and by the way, there are already 2010 mock drafts available and somewhere there probably is a website ready to tout a fifth grader as the next great college quarterback.
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