Yup, He's Totally Over Him...
In case you've been living in an eco village for the past few days, Vanderbilt defensive lineman Adam Butler had some not-so-flattering things to say about his former coach during his Monday press conference at SEC media days, according to CBSSports.com's Dennis Dodd:
"I don't want to say I'm glad Coach Franklin is gone but then again I am," Butler told CBSSports.com during SEC media days.
Butler said he thought Franklin was disingenuous in telling the Commodores at one point that he was committed, then leaving for Penn State.
"It was a little shady in a way," he said. "Repeatedly he told us he wasn't going anywhere. He really stressed it. He was in tears talking about he wasn't going to leave. Then he just up and leaves.
In fairness to Adam, I'd also be upset if someone repeatedly told me one thing only to do the exact opposite. Unfortunately, this is the type of balancing act that all coaches have to put up when they are pursuing attractive job offers while remaining in their current positions. In fact, Bill O'Brien did such a thing, himself.. Not to mention, the comments about Franklin upping and leaving are rather disingenuous on Adam's part, as it's well documented that Franklin held a meeting to say goodbye to his Vanderbilt players. It's not as if Franklin pulled a Todd Graham on his former employer. The quotes from Adam come across like a jilted lover who still hasn't gotten over their ex, even though they're happily seeing someone else.
Deividas Zemgulis Is The Real Deal
Josh Verlin at City of Basketball Love profiled Deividas Zemgulis, a recruit from Penn State's 2015 basketball class that as of now, has gotten the least amount of fanfare in comparison to consensus four stars Mike Watkins and Josh Reaves. The reviews were rather glowing, and it appears as if Pat Chambers and his staff have gotten themselves quite the steal:
He’s got a wingspan that’s easily 6-9 or 6-10, with the ability to put the ball on the floor though he said that’s the part of his game he needs to work on the most. Zemgulis can pull up from the mid-range with a quick release but also works well off screens and drifts to open spots on the perimeter while his guards drive-and-kick.
Most impressively, though, is what he does on the other end. Far from a typical European shooter, Zemgulis is a very good athlete (and good student, with a 3.9 GPA) who will come off the weak side to block shots, rebounds well and doesn’t mind mixing it up in the paint.
"Honestly, Penn State got a steal," Somerville said. "And I mean, that is no disrespect whatsoever to Penn State…but in terms of the top 25 rankings, there’s no doubt in my mind that he could have gone to a school in the top 15 or so. But he’s at the absolute right place.
"When he got here to the States, he was like a lot of European players, not used to the physicalness of the game, so he goes into the weight room in the mornings and gets shots up in the evenings; he was doing that before school every day after basketball season. So they’re getting somebody who’s going to work, and work hard, and the reason he’s here is to get an education and play basketball; he doesn’t have a lot of the distractions that some of the kids have."
Other Quick Dumps:
- Here's your friendly reminder that saying 'bomb' on an airplane, no matter how shitfaced you are, can only lead to bad things.
- The Mothership's Spencer Hall goes to Colorado, (legally) gets high on marijuana, and tries to decipher notes that he took while high at a Colorado Rockies game. Hilarity ensues.
- NBA commissioner Adam Silver has bandied around the idea of teams participating in a midseason tournament similar to the UEFA Champions League in club soccer.
- Brooks Wheelan was one of three new SNL cast members from this past season to be given the axe. Grantland points out how that's probably a good thing for Brooks' career prospects.