Meanwhile, King, whose three-year tenure at Georgia was marked by turbulence and irresponsibility before he was declared academically ineligible last week, will begin hard training next week for the supplemental draft. King, who rushed for 1,271 yards in a disappointing career with the Bulldogs, and who will be represented by Atlanta-area agent Kevin Conner, will meet with people to help him prepare for any interview sessions with NFL teams, and also will work out in front of some folks with NFL-level expertise.
Bush league: A few weeks ago, Yahoo! Sports reported that New Orleans tailback Reggie Bush has been given permission by Saints officials to seek a deal that will land him with another team. No one questioned the validity of the report – and the lockout essentially precluded New Orleans officials from discussing it – but it is essentially accurate.
One reason: The Sports Xchange has confirmed that the Bush camp pushed for the right to explore outside options and that, regardless of the views expressed by the tailback in an interview this week, in which he insisted his preference is to return to New Orleans, he has no intention of accepting a big hit to his contract.
"(Bush) has basically forced the issue," a league source told The Sports Xchange.
The deal, entering its final season, is scheduled to pay Bush $11.8 million. His original contract, negotiated in 2006, has been reconfigured once, and neither side seems keen on restructuring again.
Even with the moratorium on discussing players during the lockout, the suspicion is that Bush and his advisors have nonetheless identified a subset of potential suitors, have some feel for the price they can elicit and have determined there will be some attractive free agency opportunities if the tailback is released by the Saints.
New Orleans coach Sean Payton genuinely likes Bush, and his committee approach at tailback has nicely defined his role, but the five-year veteran might be a luxury at this point. For the Saints, Bush is a potentially explosive receiver in space, a terrific player in a screen-heavy offense and a superb punt return man. But he wants a bigger profile and, with first-round draft choice Mark Ingram further bolstering an already crowded tailback spot in New Orleans, it will be hard to justify paying nearly $12 million to a guy who is basically a role player.
The bet remains here that, between signing bonus and 2011 salary, Bush will be "made whole" on the $11.8 million, or close to it, but the odds are it won't be in New Orleans.