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At the Gates of Delirium

I should be writing a post analyzing the Hoosier/UK matchup, but that's just too much work right now.  So I am going to write about something less ... bulky.  No, no Legion stuff, that has been done ad nauseum, I'd rather write a review for Les Misérables than deal with that subject right now. I feel like poking fun at somebody or something.  Let's see ...

I think I'll start with Arkansas.  What a mess their coaching search is turning out to be.  Kind of reminds you of the coaching search carried out last year when they fired their basketball coach -- in other words, like a bunch of monkeys taking erotic turns with a football.

But even with that said, their last search turned out OK, they got John Pelphrey.  This one will probably work out for them to, at least I hope so.  Our friends over at Razorback Expats are trying to have fun with the most recent setback, but I can sense some frustration building in the Arkansas fan base.

I am of two minds on this next one.  Jim Calhoun apparently got a technical foul last night for laughing, which an official decided was scorn directed his way, and later got another and was ejected from the game.  Calhoun absolutely blasted one official, calling him "a bad official".  Now, I have heard coaches say a lot of things, but this one surely takes the prize.  Apparently, the Big East publicly reprimanded Calhoun for his remarks, which is to be expected. I presume he will get fined as well, but who knows?

Nobody who has read this blog could mistake me for a Calhoun supporter, but I do have concerns about this.  Referees "interpreting" things that coaches do, not say, such as gestures, laughter and the like, is disturbing.  I am fine with the emphasis on keeping outrageous conduct, running out of the coaching box, swearing, etc. under control.  But really, what next -- is a scowl going to draw a technical?

The NCAA is really buggering this up, but good, and it is the officials who are going to suffer.  It isn't as if they are beloved of fans anyway, but the first time (and trust me, that time is coming) we start getting ridiculous technicals for some coach shaking his head, making a face, or passing gas, the officials are going to be blamed.  Putting this much discretion in their hands, even to the extent of offering post-season rewards for running coaches out of arenas is not the way to fix the problem.

Moving on to something of less moment, I was visiting the Indiana blog Inside the Hall, which is one of several excellent Hoosier blogs.  They had a nice interview with John Clay of the Lexington Herald-Leader, but I was really surprised at the hostility of their commenters.  Man, there is some serious UK hate up there in Hoosierland.  

I wish I could generate some loathing for them in return, but I'm afraid them memory of Mike Davis running out on the floor (video here, -*WARNING -- ensure you have swallowed all hot liquid before viewing-* thanks to Acdixon) has made it impossible for me to hate them.  It would be like hating a family member who is a couple of beers short of a sixpack -- just can't do it.

Kansas' star swingman Brandon Rush apparently found himself arrested on a warrant for outstanding traffic offenses, but Bill Self doesn't think it warrants a suspension.  Let's see -- they guy failed to appear in response to a summons.  Not only that, one of the charges was driving on a suspended license -- I'd dearly love to know how that happened.  Self isn't doing himself or the kid any favors by coddling him like this.

Hey Jenny Slater takes dead aim at Steven A. Smith of ESPN, and not only scores a direct hit on the Mouth of Sauron Smith, but demonstrates how you fight hubris and lack of intellectual gravitas with humor.

Here is some of what Steven said about bloggers recently:

And when you look at the internet business, what's dangerous about it is that people who are clearly unqualified get to disseminate their piece to the masses. I respect the journalism industry, and the fact of the matter is . . . someone with no training should not be allowed to have any kind of format whatsoever to disseminate to the masses to the level which they can. They are not trained. Not experts. More important are the level of ethics and integrity that comes along with the quote-unqoute profession hasn't been firmly established and entrenched in the minds of those who've been given that license. [Emphasis mine]

I'm trying to find the words here for the "... should not be allowed ..." part.  Should the Orcs of Barad Dûr ESPN be given license to come to my home and drag my pale gray ass to the Dark Tower Bristol for punishment, Steven?  Are you going to send out "cease and desist" notices along with a copy of your "journalistic ethics?" And with due respect, if "training" is what begets rants like this one, I don't want any, thank you very much.  For if I had suggested that anyone who is "unqualified" to speak or write in public should be denied a voice, I think I would have to shoot myself, if somebody else didn't beat me to it.

Thanks a lot, Steven, for making my day.  Mocking incredible, arrogant elitism always makes me feel good, and requires very little effort.  Although maybe not for you ...

Finally, in a classic example of how wrong Steven A. Smith really is, a shout out to a competitor for doing the right thing.  Apparently, one of the bloggers over at Fanhouse forgot that when you take shots at people, you should do so with a sense of decorum and good judgment.  Fanhouse's John Ness issued an apology today to UCLA's Lorenzo Mata for what he termed a "disparaging remark" by one of the Fanhouse bloggers.  The blog post in question has since been taken down (apparently also a violation of policy).

Kudos to Fanhouse for taking responsibility and action for something that could have been swept under the rug.  It was a classy move, and holding themselves accountable when others were not raising the roof sets a good example for us all, and might keep Steven A. Smith and his Stormtroopers at bay for a little while at least.