Thursday, May 19, 2011

The Difference Between Us and Them

How do you think this would go over in any SEC Athletic Department?

"After 19 years with a Final Four appearance and six bowl games, _______ felt it was time to step down as AD."
Yet, this week, Illinois has been abuzz over those six bowl appearances during Ron Guenther's 19 years as AD.  To be fair, that did include two BCS Bowls (Sugar, losing to LSU in 2002 and Rose, losing to USC in 2008).

The source of the buzz is how much of a hot seat is The Zooker is now on.  My unscientific survey is that he isn't on much of one as long as he keeps winning.  Might I remind you the Illini had to beat Baylor in the Texas Bowl this year to get to 7-6.  The two seasons after the Rose Bowl debacle, the Illini won 8 ball games. 

Anywhere in the SEC (but Vandy, maybe), Zook would need to win the Legends (or is it Leaders) to stay.  Looking at their schedule, I see 8 wins.  He stays with 8 wins and gets an extension. 

One final thought about going to Bowl games, at least from the average Midwesterner's point of view.  We SEC fans are quick to get snarky about any bowl played in a city that we didn't grow up watching games played in on New Year's Eve or New Year's Day, but let me assure you, having a reason to get the hell out of here in December or January, even if it is December 21st or January 5th, is enough to get you excited.  So what if you are playing another 6-6 team in a random bowl that has a five year 'history' and is played in Flagstaff?  You aren't in the Midwest. 

Which is what the bowls were originally about anyway.

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