I knew when I drove up to the Wynfrey Hotel this morning that things were going to be a little different. Alabama flags dotted the parking lot and houndstooth-clad fans poured into the hotel a good three hours before Alabama’s turn at the podium. There’s a different energy in the hotel this morning, with LSU, Georgia, Vandy, and most importantly, Ala-freaking-bama taking center stage. I might just ride up and down the Escalator of Disappointment all day to see the Bama fans’ reactions. My orange and blue shirt will really piss them off.
Anyways, first up was LSU’s Les Miles. We all know Miles is a character, but I’m not sure any of us were prepared for the first few lines of his opening statement. What did Les Miles do this summer? Hyperbaric oxygen therapy research, of course. A quick Google search told me this means Les wants to increase the oxygen concentration in his body tissues, presumably so he can do more crazy things, like repelling down buildings. On the latter, Les simply said:
“I repelled down a building. I don’t know that that was all it was cracked up to be. It was tall. It was up there”
Please don’t ever change, Les.
One of the topics the media was hoping Miles would hit on was Jeremy Hill’s situation. The LSU running back recently pled guilty to punching a guy in the head. Les called it a “legal entanglement” and said that Hill is suspended indefinitely. He isn’t even allowed in the practice facility.
A couple quality Les Miles sound bites. I promise I am not making these up.
Les Miles on Australians (LSU has an Aussie punter this year): “Well, Australians have a higher voice. When you just speak regular English, it doesn’t quite get across.” Keep in mind he said all of this in a terrible Australian accent.
Les Miles on technology: “I guess what I’m saying to you is, we’ve got computers now that you can carry in your pocket. If you hit the right button, you can talk to people. For us to not admit that’s America, that’s what we’re doing, now let’s do it right.”
On social media: “20 years ago there was not a policy on Twitter. You know what, 20 years ago there was not a policy on Facebook. You know what, I’ll bet you that 20 years ago not one did a Harlem Shake, you know what I mean (smiling)?
Here is what’s happening. Somebody gave me the magic. They said there’s 500 million on Instagram, whatever the hell that is. There’s three billion on Facebook. These are phenomena that are not just youthful. LeBron James, athletes, entertainers, businessmen of our day. I mean, it’s an amazing thing.”
On banning Twitter: “Well, again, it’s kind of like saying, before they had cars, I’m not allowing any of my players to drive cars. Why? Well, I like the old buggy. It’s safer. The horse is a problem, but as long as you keep the horse pointed in the right direction, you’re okay (laughter).”
Instead of talking to the LSU players, I decided to stalk Miles for the rest of his time on the floor instead. Here he is walking to another session:
By the way, he bought that hat on Facebook.