Former Yellow Jacket Connor Justus, a fifth-round pick of the Angels, has officially forgone his senior season in favor of an early start in Anaheim and a six-figure signing bonus. Though the exact details of that big signing bonus have not been ironed out quite yet, it would be quite surprising if Justus pulled in any less that $350,000 or so unless he had a prearranged deal with Anaheim that would entail a lesser payday. What's even cooler about Justus and the way he has decided to use his newfound wealth is that he will be spending the first of his bonus money to pay off the student loan debt which his parents accrued for him to attend Tech on partial scholarship. There are a billion ways to spend $300,000, but the fact that Justus thought of his family first shows what kind of individual he is. Best of luck, Connor!
Just when I began to believe that I had a future as a psychic, Georgia Tech ace Brandon Gold went and pursued a contract with the Colorado Rockies. Gold, a twelfth-round pick last week, ended up concluding his Tech career one year early in favor of a nice signing bonus, wisely choosing the guaranteed payoff now over the risk of spending another season in college. As much as we'd all like to see him return for his senior campaign on The Flats, no one can fault the decision to take the big money that likely wouldn't be there if he were to wait another year -- seniors have virtually zero negotiating power with MLB teams. Hopefully he can continue to channel his inner grounder-inducing skills and succeed in the Mile High City. Congratulations to Brandon on signing and best of luck with Colorado!
I hit on the possibility of the ACC transitioning to a nine-game conference schedule in yesterday's post, but a new day brings a whole new proposal for divisional realignment: abolishing the Coastal and Atlantic divisions in favor of a rotation of permanent rivals. Simply put, this is an A+ idea. It has been floating around for a while (I even wrote about it here a couple of years back), and the only thing that people really get hung up on is how the pods would be aligned. In the line above, Tech would play Clemson, Virginia Tech, and Florida State every single year. That is absolutely brutal, but it's beside the point -- the important part is the structure itself. Playing in pods would mean that we'd see every team in the ACC at least every other year, including each at home once every four years, while still maintaining a championship game format. In fact, pods would kill the monotony of our current championship format where it's constantly FSU/Clemson vs. Tech/VT by changing the divisions annually. I'm completely in favor.
Feel free to leave your suggested pods below. I personally think that it would be both beneficial and so darn much fun to play FSU, Clemson, Virginia Tech, Georgia, Louisville, UNC, Miami, Pitt, Virginia, and potentially Notre Dame all in one season, but maybe that's just me. It would be an absurdly tough schedule, but boy would season tickets fly off the shelves.