Archive for June, 2008

FOOTBALL: Your mid-Summer Powe update

June 30, 2008

I see folks with sources who say Jerrell Powe’s certification by the SEC is a done deal.

Whatever the case, I spoke with SEC associate commissioner Charles Bloom this morning, and the league is continuing in its “no comment” stance.

The SEC will issue no official word nor will it give a timetable for announcing the decision.

Commissioner Mike Slive, like many Americans, is not in the office this week.

— PA

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FYI: Back at work

June 30, 2008

I’m back in pocket for a week then gone for two, and then vacation is over. When summer starts we generally have six or seven weeks to get in three weeks of vacation. We rarely take vacation during the school year.

I had a good three days last week as a chaperone with a kids church trip to camp at Mississippi College. Kyle and I left a day early to get back for a Thursday game in the Dizzy Dean state tournament at Pontotoc where we went 1-2.

I had hoped to get an earlier start on the day, but the Comcast man and the patio roof people showed up at the same time.

It’s a slow week this week with it being the Fourth.

I visited for a while with Norman Joseph, the MC coach, who was pushing his quarterback, Adam Shaffer (rhymes with Schaeffer). Shaffer, who was clearly the best quarterback by that name in the state last season, has an interesting story. I hope to catch up with all the necessary folks and have that interesting story in the print edition this week.

Joseph, some may recall, was pretty good player, a wide receiver, I think at Mississippi State in the mid-1970s. He was the wide receivers coach and FCA huddle leader at Northeast Louisiana when I was a freshman.

— PA

FYI: On vacation

June 20, 2008

Seems like I just posted a “gone fishin'” notice. I enjoyed that so much, now I’m going to take off a week at the close of business today. I’ll be gone for another two weeks in July.

It is that slow down time of year, and that’s OK, because August is coming into view.

There are a couple of things of interest to look for in Sunday’s print edition. Gregg and I have been working for a while on the concept of the “basketball practice facility.” I’ll have a detailed look the Ole Miss angle, where it stands now, how it came to be, why it’s necessary, etc.

Gregg will look at Mississippi State, which is in the fund-raising stage with many more questions to be answered.

With an eye on football, we’ll also have the five questions that most need to be answered at each school.

— PA

BASKETBALL: Good news on bids

June 19, 2008

It appears that bids from four construction companies have all come back under the $12 million goal that athletics director Pete Boone has to construct the basketball practice facility. Looks like no surprises.

— PA

BASKETBALL: Buy or sell for next season

June 19, 2008

While we’re on the subject of basketball here’s some commentary from a site I’m unfamiliar with but came across on a web search. I think it likely reflects the view of Ole Miss basketball outside the region. If you aren’t in this orbit on a fairly regular basis you don’t know about improvements at Tad Smith (limited though they are), increases to coaches salaries and the proposed basketball practice facility, which is very close to ground-breaking.

After years of neglect with facilities and inconsistent success, this is the opinion of the program on the outside.

— PA

BASEBALL: Men at work

June 18, 2008

Here are some shots of Swayze Field I took today. The views are (from the top) the press box, the left field line, the grandstand and the right field line.

All seats have been ripped up from the grandstand. It looks like concrete for the extensions down the lines isn’t too far away.

— PA

FOOTBALL: Working on the scoreboard

June 18, 2008

Dismantling of the old scoreboard is under way. There’s a crane attached getting ready to take the whole thing down, but that had not happened at the time I left campus today.

— PA

BASKETBALL: The year for the Rebels?

June 18, 2008

Coaches love to talk about controlling their own destiny if they’re in a position to play their way in the NCAA tournament.

The reality is nobody has as much control as they’d like. There’s a lot of parity in college basketball. Sometimes it helps to be on top of your game when there’s slippage in other places.

Maybe the stars will align for Ole Miss this basketball season. Obviously Mississippi State will be transitioning. Arkansas loses six seniors, including its best player, Sonny Weems.

Alabama’s season may depend on Ronald Steele’s knees. Here’s a nice read on the Tide specifically and the SEC West in general.

Keep an eye on LSU. The Tigers will get Tasmin Mitchell back, and they’ll have the new coach excitement that is good for something if the new coach is any good, and Trent Johnson is.

Ole Miss will obviously have experience issues in the frontcourt, but I like the talent that will be there. It’s better to have experience in the backcourt, and Ole Miss will have lots of it there.

After three straight NITs maybe the stars will align for Andy Kennedy.

— PA

FYI: Around campus

June 18, 2008

Had a nice visit with Andy Kennedy this morning. He is excited about the fact that ground could be broken on the basketball practice facility within a few weeks. The bid meeting is actually tomorrow. There could be action on that vacant lot across from the Gillom Center by early July.

In other news …

I’ve done some camera work this morning, a bit of a rarity, but I did get some shots of work on the dismantling of the old football scoreboard and of work at the baseball stadium, which looks very different right now.

Also got some pictures of the lot where the basketball facility will be built. The pictures may be used with the BPF project for Sunday’s print edition that Gregg and I have been working on if they pass the quality control test.

Ran into Mike Bianco leaving as I was going in. He was headed off to the Ole Miss baseball camp, which has been moved away from Swayze Field.

Not a whole lot going on right now, but there are still enough people in summer classes to make parking that problem that it usually is.

— PA

FYI: Today’s Agenda

June 18, 2008

Heading over to Oxford today to meet with Andy Kennedy, do some other things and generally just hang around. I hope to have some notes to post in the afternoon.

— PA