Happy Black Friday!
By the way, how great is Derrick Henry getting mocked by his Auburn-grad teammate with the kick six call during his interview yesterday?
This is absolutely great. Bama-grad Derrick Henry taunted by his Auburn-grad Titans teammate with the kick six call during an interview. pic.twitter.com/5pgLWdUnCZ
— Clay Travis (@ClayTravis) November 29, 2019
Okay, here we go with the Friday mailbag.
“If you’re the Ole Miss head coach, what do you tell the team immediately after a game like that?”
I try not to overreact to individual games or individual plays, but sometimes plays like these can be metaphors for the larger trajectory of a program.
And I’ll be damned if I’d be happy about Matt Luke coming back for year four after the way year three ended if I were an Ole Miss fan.
The thing that I still can’t get over here is that Elijah Moore has to know the situation here. It’s not like he suddenly scored on a ninety yard touchdown play in the first quarter and did this, he’s scoring with four seconds left in a game he’s hoping to send to overtime.
He knows the math and he knows that an extra point with 15 yards added to it is way more likely to be missed than one from directly in front of the goal posts.
Remeber, and this is key, Ole Miss was trying to score the tying touchdown for what felt like forever in that goal to go situation. So Moore had a ton of time to think about whether it was smart to pretend to urinate on the field and he still did it in that situation.
What’s more, Matt Luke had a ton of time, thanks to all the timeouts, to remind his players to keep their head when they scored so they could take the game into overtime. (Or go for two and the win).
So you’re asking me what a coach should say in that situation, but that’s a situation that should have already been addressed. Before the game he should have said, “Look, this is going to be a hard fought, close football game. Whatever y’all do you, you can’t have stupid celebration penalties. And nobody better pee on the field like D.K. Metcalf did. And if you do, I’m gonna run you until you feel like you’re dead. And I might cut you off the team.”
It’s crazy that you might need to say that, but it’s clear Luke needed to say it. And if he did say it and this happened anyway it’s clear the team doesn’t respect him.
Like I said, I just feel like this is an overall metaphor for the entire Matt Luke era.
The Rebels are 15-21 overall, 6-18 in the SEC after three years of Luke. They’ve been sixth out of seven teams every year in the SEC.
And what have you seen in three years that makes you think things are getting better?
So far Ole Miss has gotten worse each season under Luke, from 6-6 to 5-7 to 4-8.
It’s a tough spot to be in, but this loss, and the way it happened, feels like the end, in many ways, for Matt Luke at Ole Miss.
“What do the Titans do with Marcus Mariota? Trade, release? Titans have to build around Ryan Tannehill and Derrick Henry.”
First, there are five games left in the season and knowing the Titans anything can happen.
So I definitely wouldn’t make any decisions between now and then.
But assuming the final five games of this season are somewhat similar to the five games that Tannehill has played already, I think you sign Tannehill to an extension and let Mariota go in free agency.
Both of these guys are unrestricted free agents and I think both of them would find decent interest on the market as guys who could challenge for the starting role with teams like the Bears or Panthers.
I’d sign Tannehill, if possible, for around twenty million a year to a two year guarantee with a team option at, let’s say, $25 million for year three.
That’s less than the Titans are paying for Mariota and Tannehill this year and it seems like a reasonable dollar figure given that Tannehill is only making around $8 million this year.
As for Derrick Henry, I don’t know why it takes so long every year for the Titans to realize that Henry is really good. It’s like they always want to build the offense around someone else and then come late November they suddenly realize they have a top five running back in the league, start leaning on him, and he puts them in playoff contention.
The craziest thing about the Titans is they have had three straight winning seasons, but all of those seasons have been 9-7 years.
And I feel like the team is trending for 9-7 for a fourth straight year.
It’s like no matter what changes they make or what alterations to the team occur, they still end up 9-7.
I feel like they’ll be 9-6 when they go on on the road and lose to the Houston Texans in the final game of the season to finish 9-7 and be the last team out of the playoffs.
The Titans are to the NFL what dry humping is to sex.
It’s not exactly bad, but you definitely would like to actually have sex one day.
(By the way, I feel like the Tennessee Volunteers and Michigan Wolverines are the same way in college football. If you’re a Vol and Titan fan your genitals are just perpetually chafed).
“Should South Carolina fire Muschamp? He’s 3-9, 6-7, 9-4, 6-7 and about to be 4-8 with an $18 million buyout.”
Here’s the deal, who do you hire that’s definitely going to be better?
I think this is the same situation that the other USC, Southern Cal, found itself in.
If you’re going to pay a massive buyout, you need a big time hire to justify that buyout. And who is that big time hire for South Carolina?
I just don’t see one on the horizon.
Especially right now with Dabo completely dominating the state. Plus, after years of mediocrity, the SEC East seems to be trending up. Georgia and Florida are clearly on the upswing with Kirby and Mullen and Tennessee looks to be in a decent place with Pruitt.
So if you’re Mizzou, South Carolina, Vandy or Kentucky you are likely going to trend down as a result of the traditional powers of the division getting out of their malaise.
That means it’s really hard to get a big name at any of these places.
Which is why I’d be inclined to wait another year on Muschamp, who I think has proven he can beat all these other guys.
“Thoughts on the reVOLution (2017 TN coaching search) 2 years later?”
I think Tennessee fans are two for two on their revolutions.
The first, and many forget this, was forcing out Cuonzo Martin. Remember how the national media ripped Vol fans to shreds for the petition to bring back Bruce Pearl. Well, look at what Pearl has done at Auburn and what Cuonzo has done since he left Tennessee.
Pearl has taken Auburn, AUBURN, to the Final Four and Cuonzo Martin still hasn’t won an NCAA tournament game in his coaching career.
Cuonzo had a decent first year at Mizzou thanks to a couple of big name recruits and then last year went 15-17, 5-13 in the SEC. In his third year he has started off 4-3 and odds don’t look great for him to make the NCAA Tournament.
I think Cuonzo’s a good dude, but I think he’s an average, at best, coach.
And I think Mizzou fans understand that now based on what they’ve seen from him so far.
Getting rid of mediocrity gave Tennessee basketball a chance to snag Rick Barnes and right now Barnes has the Vols rolling in basketball. But is there any doubt that based on what he’s done at Auburn that Pearl would have come back to Tennessee and won big too?
There’s no doubt at all.
Vol fans were right about Cuonzo and Pearl and it’s looking like they were right about Schiano as well.
The difference in football is Tennessee fans weren’t demanding a specific person, just not Schiano.
Look, maybe Rutgers is going to end up hiring Greg Schiano because neither Schiano nor Rutgers has a better option, but every other team in college football has passed on him over the past two years. Worse than that, the Ohio State defense is infinitely better since Schiano was kicked to the curb. I mean, just loads better.
Even Ohio State fans who defended Schiano have to admit this year’s defense is orders of magnitude better than any defense he ever ran.
Meanwhile Jeremy Pruitt, assuming the Vols can win tomorrow, will tie for the best Vol SEC record since 2007 in year two. Yes, Georgia State and BYU represented an awful start to the season, but I think you can legitimately see Pruitt learned from those games. It’s a shame Tennessee couldn’t replay those games now because I think Tennessee would win both and get to nine regular season wins.
Pruitt’s won four straight SEC games as an outright underdog, something that hasn’t happened in this conference in forever and, amazingly, he’s now 6-9 in the SEC over two years despite having been an underdog in his first 15 league contests.
If he beats Vandy tomorrow he’ll be 7-9 in two years of SEC football, which isn’t bad considering he inherited a team that went 0-8 in the SEC. What’s more, if he’s won seven games despite being an underdog in 15 of those games, what will he do when he’s actually got a team that’s favored to win?
Finally, the addition of Jim Chaney and locking him down for years to come as an offensive coordinator feels like a really big coup. Particularly if you look at what has happened with Georgia’s offense in Chaney’s absence. I’m not sure Pruitt will be an SEC title winning head coach, but he’s definitely proven to be a solid hire and all the trend lines are pointing up as he heads into year three.
So I think it’s fair to say that Vol fan revolutions have led to a clear win in basketball and are trending towards another win in football as well.
“Colin Cowherd claims Lincoln Riley is the perfect fit to replace Jason Garrett of the Cowboys. Do you agree? If not, who would your ‘perfect fit’ be to lead the Cowboys?”
I think Lincoln Riley’s a great coach, but if you told me to pick one guy who could put the Cowboys in the Super Bowl in three years, I think I’d go with Greg Roman from the Baltimore Ravens.
He’s gotten the absolute most possible out of Colin Kaepernick, Tyrod Taylor, and Lamar Jackson.
Why not believe he could do the same for Dak? And for Zeke?
Unlike Lincoln Riley, who might have an adjustment period when it comes to NFL coaching, Roman is already in the NFL and has won at a high level as an offensive coordinator.
So he would be my choice.
“Why isn’t the media talking about trump signing the Hong Kong bill?”
Because when Donald Trump makes good decisions the media tends to go silent.
And signing this bill was a good decision.
It would have been easy for Trump to pull an NBA here and decide not to sign a bill supporting the Hong Kong protesters because it threatened his business. (Trump is in the middle of trade negotiations with China and the Chinese lobbied hard for him not to sign this bill, meaning it was in his best interest not to sign the bill).
But Trump did the right thing — he stood up for democracy in Hong Kong and signed the bipartisan bill Congress had passed.
Trump stood up for Hong Kong protesters something Steve Kerr, Greg Popovich, LeBron James, and all of Trump’s other critics in the NBA weren’t willing to do when taking the right stand threatened the NBA’s bottom line in China.
I have long said that Trump is an inarticulate voice for a national conversation our country needs to have.
Someone has to stand up to the far left wing imbeciles.
And I think many people get lost in the noise of his perpetual carnival show. But when you actually dive into his tenure as president, what’s worse now than when he took office? The stock market has soared, unemployment is at historic lows for all races, per capita income is at all time highs, crime is down substantially, soldier deaths overseas are down and we aren’t presently in danger from any of our adversaries, our GDP is up substantially, all of these are very positive data trends.
And what’s the negative?
Far left wingers on Twitter are perpetually triggered despite the fact that everything in the country is going pretty well.
So the perpetually outraged are still outraged, but otherwise things are pretty great.
Again, I feel like a voice screaming into the wilderness because social media, most of the time, is focused on the newest viral outrage, but everything is getting better all over the world when you look at the data.
Be an optimist!
Just look at this data I tweeted out this morning on how great the 2010’s have been.
Bad news is sudden and overcovered, good news is gradual and rarely trends on social media. It’s important to realize that things in the world get better virtually every day. Look at these stats. https://t.co/qYAarJOOs0
— Clay Travis (@ClayTravis) November 29, 2019
It’s easy to be a pessimist and pessimism goes viral every day all day long while optimism is built on small acts of goodness, which don’t produce massive emotion and don’t trend on social media.
But the truth of the matter is this, we should all be optimists because human history is one long battle with the forces of darkness that the optimists win just about every single day.
The King of the Lake Tweets:
“How could you take pecan pie number 1 in the Thanksgiving food draft?”
Because I’m a damn American hero.
With perfect tastebuds.
If you hate pecan pie, you hate America.
Hope all of you have fantastic long holiday weekends.
I’m off to the beach with the boys.