Vettel: On new NCAA rules, Bloom, and Taurean

This time around, Larry pontificates about the new NCAA rules against celebrations and more on the football field - it's getting ridiculous, he says. He also talks about the Jeremy Blook saga saying it's a joke and why. Finally he answers a question about Taurean Charles' status with the team.


I'm 46 years old. So if you are in that general vicinity you can't help but remember George Carlin's "seven dirty words". It was a hysterically fun comedy bit, especially at a time when most comics when nowhere near such language.

Well the NCAA, in its never-ending crusade to ensure a minimum of enjoyment for student-athletes has now published "15 dirty acts". Basically, Rule 9-2-1-a lists those infractions which the NCAA now "urges game officials to penalize" since they "demean opponents or the image of the game".

Some of these make sense to me, the throat slash, running onto the field to argue a call, standing over a prone player and firing a weapon. These things, to me are going too far. But some of the others are just typical examples of middle-aged and older white men using their position of authority to control the behavior of much younger, often darker men. Here are some of the ones that bug me the most:

Spinning the ball---- Not only does it look really cool, it doesn't do any harm whatsoever. The official picks up the ball and voila' lets move on. My guess is these old farts couldn't spin it themselves, so made it illegal.

Diving into the end zone when unchallenged--- Again, what is the harm here? It is an act of pure joy. I'll never forget Terry Jackson's dive in New Orleans, nor will any other non-Nole in attendance

Going significantly beyond the end zone to interact with spectators--- The last thing we need in college football is athletes showing appreciation for their fans and including them in their success.

Performing a military-style salute---- Does this apply to the military academies? That might cause some serious problems.

I guess what bugs me most is no other sport does anything like this. Can you imagine a crackdown on celebrations in college basketball? If they called technicals for that, Anthony Roberson would never play in the second half. And the excitement of the game would suffer.

Jeremy Bloom Saga A Joke

The NCAA continues its battle with University of Colorado student Jeremy Bloom to keep him off the football field. You may be aware that Bloom, a World Champion freestyle skier wants to kick for the Buffaloes' football program, but the NCAA won't let him because he gets endorsement money for his skier exploits. The NCAA stance on this is pure hypocrisy.

This organization allows athletes to be professionals in one sport and amateurs in another. But Bloom is in a sport that rewards its competitors in the endorsement arena rather than with prize money. So while Quincy Carter, Chris Weinke, Doug Johnson and many others can take money from pro baseball and play college hoops, Bloom is denied because the money comes from "endorsements".

What nonsense! If you are going to let student-athletes be professional in one sport and compete collegiately in another, then you have to accept that non-traditional "sports" may pay athletes differently.

Personally, I am opposed to allowing any athletes to do it. I think it creates a whole new host of problems when one member of your football team has mega-bucks in the bank. If you turn pro, that's it. But until the rule changes, situations like Blooms are a joke.

And these are the same people who might decide to reinstate USC's Mike Williams?

Recruiting Rankings Re-visited

Apparently I stirred up a bit of a hornets nest last time when I criticized the obsession some have with recruiting rankings. For the record, I have NEVER used the phrase "you have to wait four years" as one poster claimed. I know I never said it, because I never believed it and still don't.

My basis for evaluating a recruiting class has always been based on who did you compete with for players, how high of a percentage of your targeted guys did you get and did you address your most pressing needs. I always criticized recruiting when I felt the Gators didn't address need (usually linemen). While I praised Florida's recruiting efforts in 2000 as one of the best results I had ever seen, that is not the same as endorsing the individual players they recruited. I rarely watch enough video of high school players to pretend to determine which guys the Gators should be going after. I do, however form opinions of players I see in person. So feel free to ask me about anyone who played in the state finals last year.

The bottom line is there are three phases of recruiting; identifying the player, signing the player and developing the player. I submit the third element is the most important. And it's not part of any recruiting rankings.

From the E-Mail Bag

SuperTrooper42 writes: " I keep reading how Taaurean Charles is at the practices cheering on the team. Is he still not kicked off the team?

First, Taurean is not "kicked off" he is suspended and likely will remain so as long as felony charges are pending. He has been at some practices, watching along the hill like the rest of us mere mortals. He is still barred, from my understanding, from all "team" activities. His situation is tough to handle because the police sat on the report for six weeks, making life very difficult for those who must determine what, if any charges should be formally filed. Once it all shakes out, I don't believe he is likely to be prosecuted for a felony in this case, but it won't go aware either.

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