Each week, we’re graced with the musings of Dave “Buzz” Baker. This week, Buzz checks in with his thoughts on the Florida football game. Check it out.
TOGA! TOGA! TOGA!
Some of the GREAT movies don’t get the credit they deserve for the life lessons they teach. Take the classic “Animal House,” for instance. Did this cutting edge film lay the groundwork for the defense that UK fans used at halftime Saturday night when their defense wasn’t defending? Did UK fans follow the lead of Eric ”Otter” Stratton and decide “we’re not gonna take it anymore” ?
This defense makes about as much sense as Rick Minter’s assertion that “Lightning struck the outhouse and we were in it.” I mean, really, after coaching at this level for decades, wouldn’t he know to put a lightning rod on top of the outhouse? Seriously, the guy is making $325,000 and that’s the response? In fairness, Minter did go on to say, “That was a totally unacceptable level of performance” and on that count? He is totally right.
As for the “Otter Defense”… if the performance on the field causes people to keep walking out (or not walking in at all!) then the dynamic of this team’s struggles and how Mitch Barnhart evaluates them changes substantially. Speaking of Barnhart, the UK AD & the University administration, in general, take a lot of heat. It comes with the job and shouldn’t be a surprise. Some of it is unwarranted and other gripes are spot on.
The one thing I wish the folks at UK would do, as a whole, is to speak out when they’re being unjustly targeted. This whole thing about coal is a perfect example. Several groups and individuals and their friends in the media have been killing UK for its association with the coal industry. Whether it’s Joe Craft, the Kentucky Coal Lodge or the industry’s sponsorship of the UK-UL game, coal opponents have been screaming like Kentucky is taking money from drug dealers. Sure, there are people in that business (like any other business or walk of life) who have done things that have given the industry and those who work in it “a black eye”, but should that be an indictment of the group as whole? That would be as silly as saying the entire solar energy field was corrupt because of the Solyndra case. (Solyndra, a solar-panel maker, collapsed into Chapter 11 bankruptcy earlier this month after receiving a $535 million government loan guarantee from the Department of Energy in 2009.) Or it would be like saying that every broker is a crook because Bernie Madoff was one.
It is because of coal, that we have the lowest utility rates in the country! I just wish that UK itself would step up to the plate more for people who step up for them. Coal miners work long and hard to send their kids to schools like UK! The fans from the regions where coal is mined in eastern and western Kentucky are arguably some of the most devoted in the Big Blue Nation.
On the other side, this entire flap about the “UK Ring of Honor”, in my opinion, was TOTALLY preventable. You need those ribbon boards to raise the money that football says it needs, but there’s got to be a way to communicate the challenge to those honorees who were affected. There’s got to be a better solution than the flags that were put up.
BTW, what is the deal with this “UK to the ACC” noise? Thank goodness Steve Jobs never paid any attention to those folks who said he was wasting his time trying to compete with Microsoft. And here’s something else to think about: Would the Randall Cobb’s and others have come to Kentucky with hopes to prove wrong those who passed them over, IF UK was not in the SEC?
Sure, it’s tough now, but is that a reason to tuck tail and run?
“Nothing is over ’til WE decide it is!” Bluto 101.
SEC STAR WARS
I’ve had the good fortune to know Florida coach Will Muschamp since he was a member of Roy Kidd’s staff @ EKU. Not only is he a great coach, but one of the genuinely funniest people I’ve ever met. This weekend, the Gators take on Alabama and the means Muschamp matching wits with Nick Saban, the man he worked for at LSU & with the Miami Dolphins.
Will coached the DB’s (Saban’s specialty) and then was his defensive coordinator. He, more than any other former Saban assistants who have gone on to become head coaches, is the most like the old his boss. That brought up a question at the weekly Florida news conference from Orlando Sentinel reporter Rachel George who asked about the Jedi Master-Padawan relationship between the two. For those of us who know him, the answer can only be described as “classic Muschamp”.