5-at-10: Friday mailbag with conference expansion, Munson or Ward, McAfee’s attire

In this file photo taken Aug. 30, 2008, legendary University of Georgia play-by-play announcer Larry Munson, center, calls a game between the the Bulldogs and Georgia Southern in Athens, Ga. Munson died Sunday, Nov. 20, 2011. He was 89. A university statement said he died at his Athens home of complications from pneumonia, according to his son, Michael. (AP Photo/Athens Banner-Herald, David Manning, File)

There's business. And like Allen Iverson's crossover, it must be handled.

Rushmore of the NBA — Russell, MJ, Stern and a mesh of Magic and Bird

Rushmore of sit-com characters — Lucy, Fonzie, Hawkeye Pierce and Archie Bunker.

Rushmore of MTV — Madonna, Michael Jackson, Carson Daly, mesh of Beavis and Butthead

Rushmore of Michael Biehn, who was born in Anniston, Alabama — Tombstone, Terminator, The Rock, Aliens.

Here's Paschall on UT football, because rules are rules people.

To the bag.

From Doug

Jay, when are we going to stop saying that "This Power5 Coach" is a great recruiter, or "This Power5" school is killing it in recruiting, when really all Power5 recruiting is now just "how much NIL money did you offer"? It's to the point now that recruiting is simply negotiating. And are we going to see less Power5 schools hiring assistant coaches because they are "great recruiters" and not necessarily good on the field coaches. With NIL all you really need is to out-bid who you are recruiting against. Sounds cynical, but its whats happening.


There's merit to that. Money talks, but hasn't money always talked? Now it's just more open.

Note I did not say transparent or even clean, it's just out there and acknowledged.

That said, with all of the conferences consuming each other and the landscape as unknown as ever in almost every prism, the folks who think NIL or the transfer portal are the things ruining college sports are missing the forest for the trees.

The sharks are circling the Pac-12. The future of the mid-majors has never been more murky. If I gave you the choice that in 30 years UTC would be Division III or a true D-I mid-major, which would you pick?

But yeah, let's worry about the 5-star outside linebacker who got $50K from the Auburn-Opelika Ford dealership.

From Patrick

Four leagues of 16 teams each. Hmm.... Wonder if that's been floated out there before?

This FSU stuff came pretty quickly and would UF have veto privileges — or would they use them if they have them? Would they want to be in that position Auburn or Alabama is in, with a big rivalry game the week before the SEC championship determining whether you go?

I listened to one of their trustees and he said they wanted to compete for championships. Uh, look here, fella, your girls soccer (Final Four team) and softball teams have done just that. This year. Your hoops team was Elite Eight a couple years back. Your football is getting back after a few really down years. Oddly, though, the once powerhouse FSU baseball was rock bottom in the ACC this year. DFL. By a lot.

Enjoy the Big 10. Nothing says college football like FSU at Minnesota in November.

With 4/16 leagues, there is still one giant white whale out there to land, Ahab. OK, one giant Golden Domed whale. And it is not Boston College.


Fair point, and it has long been discussed that long-time SEC members Florida, USC, Georgia and Kentucky, do not want to share the league with other schools from those states like FSU, Clemson, Tech and Louisville.

But who knows. In fact, the ACC is in a pickle because it knows it needs FSU more than a slew of other members, but do they dare put in a sliding scale of media money? And if they do, how quickly would Alabama and Georgia announce that they wanted more of the kitty than Vandy or Missouri?

Notre Dame is the white whale on this, and I saw something recently that noted the Big Ten's new deal that includes a high-profile game on NBC each week really paves the way for the Irish to head to the Big Ten eventually.

And that's as it should be.

My question for the group is, let's suppose it points toward the four super conferences of 16 or more: The ACC holds FSU and its current crew and adds a wannabe or two like a West Virginia; The Pac-12 folds and the Big 12 picks up those pieces; The Big Ten adds Notre Dame to go with its Pac-12 additions like USC and UCLA and possibly Oregon and Washington; And the SEC has 16 with Oklahoma and Texas in the mix.

Is the Big Ten then positioned to be better than the SEC? Discuss.

From Don

Saw on Twitter you responded to the sports moments that made you get up out of your seat. I've got two.

"The 2-1 ... swung! line drive left field! one run is in! here comes Bream! here's the throw to the plate! he is ... Safe! Braves win! Braves win! Braves win! Braves win!"

My 63-year-old father leaped over the coffee table and came to a sliding stop on his knees in front of the TV on that play. What we didn't know until years later is he had a chance to play professional baseball, one of the many family stories that can't be verified because all of the witnesses are dead (omerta, baby). His oldest brother talked him out of it. Told him to stay in the Army.


Back story. Someone on social media asked "what sports moment made you jump out of your chair?"

My answer was the Kick 6, followed by Gibson homering off Eckersley in '88. I also should have added Laettner's shot in '92, with all apologies to Chas, wherever he may be.

But, like David Allen Coe, my friend wrote me back an email and I felt obliged to include it on this here mailbag.

Sid's slide was amazing. There is no doubt. We were watching that game in the Beta House at Auburn, and Pat Winters was a huge Pirates fan for some reason and he was talking a world of trash.

Back story, part II. As dumb college kids we had a thing called "porching," and that was when something big happened — engaged, big honors, flat tire, missed "Saved by the Bell," pretty much anything — you would get carried to the porch and have the leftovers from dinner and whatever other trash that could be found dumped on you as the pledges held you down.

(Somewhat not surprisingly I suppose, my fraternity has since been kicked off Auburn's campus. Go figure.)

Anywell, after Sid's slide, we randomly porched Pat Winters. Good times.

Better times — it's funny and cool when you realize your parents used to be, you know, like, cool. My eye-opening moment was at the now-closed iconic Smyrna eatery Howard's, which is a place we went to a lot.

A bleepin' lot from middle school through when I moved to the 423.

Well, to honor the 1959 Campbell High state championship baseball team, Howard's put a mural of the team photo on the wall as you entered the lavatory. (Side question: Who uses the word lavatory on a regular basis? Discuss.)

There in the top right was my old man, who played first and hit third for a state champ. Yeah, I was proud.

"Braves win. Braves win."

Side question for the group: Who do you remember most from that moment, slow-footed Sid Bream, pinch-hitting wunderkind Francisco Cabrera's heroics or Skip Carey's all-time call?

Which leads us to...

From DogLover


I enjoy your writing and miss you on the radio, even if you are a Tiger/Plainsman/Eagle/whatever.

I have not wrote you before but this week someone mentioned the Hobnail Boot game and I wondered if you could settle an argument for me and my friend (blank).

Don't use his name because he read this too and he's kind of a (blank), but he will know it's me because we argue about this all the time.

Who was the better announcer, Larry (Munson) or John Ward?

Thanks and Auburn sucks.


Uh, thanks for the kind words that were mixed in there.

First, Auburn is the Tigers. Our war cry is "War Eagle" and the Plainsmen are a hoi-polloi group of super talented seniors. Any other questions.

Second, this question has no answer. I prefer Munson. Loved him growing up and was listening live when he uttered "My God a FRESHMAN" when Herschel trucked Bill Bates in his first game with the Bulldogs.

(Side note: If I had been 10 years younger with the HOPE scholarship in place, there is about 150% chance I would have gone to UGA rather than Auburn. Glad how it turned out, but that's fiscal facts.)

But for those that think it's a dunk for Munson, well, you likely did not experience John Ward, who was every bit as revered by the UT faithful as Munson was by the Dawg backers.

I would lean toward Munson, but that's because I heard more of him.

In fact, I miss all those old-school homer voices. Ledford at UK, Ciraldo and then Durham at Tech, Fife at AU. Eli Gold is still doing his thing when he can at Bama, and Jim Reynolds is really good at UTC to bring it closer to home.

Those folks were part of the love, tapestry and emotion that makes college sports so special.

From John

(Pat McAfee) has to be as obnoxious a personality as there is in all of sports. Whether it's the goofball hairdo, his tank tops, his jewelry or his grating and in your face demeanor, dude (or is it bro?) is truly cringe-worthy.

If I were he, I'd tone it down. Look what just happened at ESPN and all the "indispensable" personalities. Somehow the ships sail on without the legends of the game. Today's media have too many panelists on these shows, and it's a turnoff to me.


It is 100% bro. Heck it may be bruh, I don't know. I can't remember the last time I wore a tank top that was not basketball-related.

Have a great weekend, friends.