According the the recent experience rankings released by Phil Steele, the ACC is set to be one of the most inexperienced conferences in the entire nation. His ranking lists Tech as the 106th in overall experience, good for tenth in the ACC. It only seems natural for the Jackets to experience an influx of new talent this season after losing so much of it, particularly on defense, at the end of last season-- Jeremiah Attaochu, Jemea Thomas, Brandon Watts, Emmanuel Dieke, Euclid Cummings, and Louis Young were lost from the defense alone. Ray Beno, Jay Finch, Will Jackson, Vad Lee, David Sims and Robert Godhigh were all offensive players lost to graduation or transfer, and even kicker Sean Poole is gone. There will be a lot of turnover this season, but nothing a little Paul Johnson magic/screaming won't fix.
All of the Jackets who are playing summer league baseball are already doing their part to help their respective teams succeed, writes TGW. Each player appears to be getting considerable playing time, although some appear to be fairing better than others; most of the hitters they mentioned are barely scratching .200 and a few pitchers seem to be struggling as well. I wouldn't think that a player struggling during summer league play is something to worry about because (correct me if I'm wrong) summer league must be like spring training for them-- a low-stakes way to figure things out and get better. It is interesting that Daniel Spingola is not mentioned on that list, so I must assume that he signed with the Cubs (I can't find any news of his signing). That would mean that each Tech player drafted signed with an MLB team-- disappointing for Tech fans but exciting for them.
This next article is the most interesting one I've read this month; it details not why Maryland wanted to join the B1G, but why the B1G extended an invite to the perennial postseason school in the first place. SI claims that the reasoning behind the B1G's puzzling decision to invite Maryland and Rutgers was because they saw that their home region, the Midwest, was beginning to "die" (shrinking population, lack of talent, etc.) and they needed a sprawling area with a growing amount of athletic talent, and what better place than the ever-growing east coast? Expanding to places Maryland and New Jersey expand the footprint of the Big 10 to a much wider area, to more fans, and most importantly to new recruiting hotbeds. It's an interesting strategy, but only time will tell if the power conference made the right choice.
Quick, everyone! Return your signed, half-eaten burrito from your favorite Memphis basketball player or the NCAA could be knocking on your door! That's right, SBN College Football sent an email full of strange but important questions to Memphis's assistant athletic director of compliance regarding the new NCAA rule changes. These were pressing matters which are now thankfully resolved. I feel much more confident knowing that players may sign their letters of intent with frosting and that eating a Chicago-style deep dish pizza will not result in automatic expulsion. Phew.
Daily Debate: Will the B1G's decision to invite Maryland and Rutgers pay off?
Does the ACC's relative inexperience mean that it will be any less competitive in 2014?