Did anyone in their right mind actually think that on the day before signing day the topic of conversation would be what happened before, during or after a women's basketball game in Baton Rouge? Now you know times are changing. You know women's basketball has arrived in the capital city when grown men are discussing women's hoops the Tuesday before the revered Bayou Bash.
Sue Gunter would be proud.
But that was the case last week as the Internet message boards and talk radio shows were buzzing with chatter about Chatman vs. Mulkey-Robertson. Any uneducated sports fan might have thought there was a boxing match the night before at the Maravich Center.
Nope. Just a women's basketball game.
Sparks flew at the PMAC last Monday when Chatman allegedly popped off to Mulkey-Robertson prior to the Lady Tigers 31-point pasting of defending national champion Baylor. Mulkey-Robertson was livid, Chatman defensive and fans were left on the edge of their seats as if tuning in to a juicy episode of Young and the Restless.
Whatever the case, Chatman won't make the Mulkey-Robertson Christmas card list and we are pretty sure that is vice-versa.
In other news, Les Miles reeled in a pretty impressive class of recruits, there is positive banter abound in Baton Rouge about the men's basketball team while the LSU baseball team is ready to get the ball rolling at The Box.
It is all here in our latest rant.
Maybe this should be a thumb's up. The fallout from last Monday's Chatman/Mulkey-Robertson brouhaha may make the list for most exciting things to happen in LSU sports this year. But actually, it is a shame what transpired before a nationally-televised audience. Two of the top coaches in the country locked horns in a battle of national powers – and national egos. It was evident that Chatman said something Mulkey-Robertson didn't like. She (Chatman) admitted she said something, but used the "it was taken out of context" line that is frequently trotted out to soften the blow after having said something you might presently regret. Mulkey-Robertson then aired the dirty laundry in a press conference setting blasting Chatman from every angle. Sure Chatman said something inappropriate, but one has to think the Baylor coach was somewhat emotional after her team took it on the chin by 31. In this instance, it made for good journalism, but in the end, both coaches were in the wrong.
While there was plenty of talk about the women's hoops donnybrook on Monday, there was a positive buzz in the air concerning the men's basketball team. Heading into the weekend, John Brady's Tigers were undefeated in the SEC at 7-0 and had won 13 straight SEC games before last Saturday's trip to Alabama. LSU leapt into the top 25 (AP, not the coaches, who are boneheads for not ranking this team) and ESPN has the Tigers rated as a projected No. 4 seed in the Power 16. Analyst Jay Bilas actually had the Tigers projected as a darkhorse Final Four team.
To Darrel Mitchell and Sylvia Fowles. Both were named Louisiana Sports Writers Association Players of the Week last week. Fowles had 26 points and 22 rebounds versus Vanderbilt and Mitchell scored 22 and 28 points in wins over Georgia and Ole Miss. He also then turned around and scored 27 midweek last week versus Auburn.
To Les Miles. Who is hotter than this guy right now? A month after Miles' Tigers destroyed Miami in the Peach Bowl, Miles reeled in a top 10 recruiting class, as a high as No. 5 by some services, and has a full head of steam heading into spring drills.
To Keiland Williams. At the time this piece was written, the Hargrave Military Academy standout was still trying to make up his mind between LSU, USC and Ole Miss? Williams committed to the Tigers and the Lafayette native's mother assured everyone he was LSU bound. But then Keiland had a change of heart? Considering USC is understandable, but Ole Miss should be nowhere in the mix for his services. Williams said he had his mind made up on the Tigers a week before signing day. What would make him change it at the last minute? It should all come out in the laundry.
Here's to Smoke Laval and the Tiger baseball team. LSU kicked things off this past weekend with the annual alumni game. The Tigers open the regular season hosting North Florida this weekend at Alex Box Stadium.