Thursday, September 9, 2010

VSL Hotline: You Think You're Sorry, Edition

The lead Vanderbilt story in today's Tennessean is the Big Ten's apology to Vanderbilt for blowing the late personal foul call that certainly cost the Commodores a chance to win the game (whether that was the reason we lost has been discussed). Coach Caldwell's quote nails it: "What good does it do? . . . It's amazing to me . . . The same people will be working the games. They'll be rolling on, bottom line." The apology, while nice, doesn't amount to a hill of beans. Officials get calls wrong all the time, it's part of football, but as a Vanderbilt fan, it certainly seems like we've gotten more than our fair share of terrible calls. The best solution, obviously, is to not be in a position where an officials terrible call can impact the result of game. Still, Vanderbilt is always going to be in close games (especially against quality opponents).I am a proponent of replay because I think the most important thing is getting the call right. Every play in college is reviewed, and the vast majority of calls are judgment calls. That certain plays and reviewable and certain plays are not strikes me as arbitrary and capricious (what up, graduating from law school). Get it right. I don't want to speak for everyone, but that beats the hell out of an apology on the heels of a loss.

The Nashville City Paper's Mark Wheeler writes today about the import of freshmen to Vanderbilt's receiving corp. The issue is talent and size versus field-readiness. Based on Saturday's game against Northwestern, the coaching staff is still relying heavily on the returning players, but it certainly sounds like there is reason for optimism out-wide in the games and seasons to come.

LSU's beat reporter for the Baton Rogue Advocate, Randy Rosetta, answered 5 questions from Jeff Lockridge.

There'e still time to join VSL's NFL Pick'em group.

Group Name: VSL Nation
Password: vslnation

For what its worth, I did a great impression of the Future last night in my pick-up basketball game. "And boom goes the dynamite." Bobby, OUT


Tom M said...

But this is our hill, and these are our beans!

AD said...

You mentioned replay in your post. Two technical infrastructure questions for the upcoming game:

1) During the first quarter, the officials announced that replay capabilities were unavailable (they became available later, which connects to my second question). Does the VSL brain trust have any insight into what happened with this, how the stadium possibly was not ready for this for game one, and whether there's any concern going forward?

2) After VU's first touchdown (Norman stretching the ball across the line, I believe... had a great view on it (, the boat horn went off for a solid few minutes. I couldn't tell whether it got "stuck" or they were trying to drown out the officials' communication during the replay review of the touchdown. I don't think they sounded the horn again during the game, even though VU did score. Any clues on this one?

Douglas James said...

Football sets itself up for replay the best of any of the 4 major sports and I def think it should be expanded as far as possible. However, the idea of reviewing penalities goes too far in my book. Talk about a slippery slope! (Eww god I hate law school talk). I know most everything is a judgment call but nothing more so than penalties. It would just drag the game to a halt if they could review penalties IMO.

Anonymous said...

As a new Vandy fan (parent) as of this freshman class, it is hard to take the awful call by the official at the end of the nw game. I was sitting on the side where the play happened; seemed like initially nobody could possibly think that the official would call "helmet to helmet" thereby giving the game to nw. Then after thinking of all the penalties and missed opportunities by Vandy throughout the game, I really could not "blame" the game of that last bad call. Here's hoping that the offensive the play-calling will be a little less predictable and allow Smith some time to get the ball downfield to any 1 of our 3 freshman playmaker wide-outs. The running game looked really good in the 2nd half. Just my opinion, but "The Tennessean" has very poor coverage of Vandy football. Go Dores.

Vnadygal78 said...

What really gets me about the reviews is when the broadcasters have a strong opinion that turns out to be opposite what the refs eventually come up with. I wish the refs had to check with the broadcasters after they review the play. If they disagree, the refs need to take another look.
To the parent of a Vandy player- welcome, hope your son enjoys Vandy! And yes the local paper is dreadful, a real UT slant.

Anonymous said...

Makes Pat Fitzgerald look like a dope. Looks like his post game quote stating that it was a good call/ bad hit was a tad premature.

Anonymous said...

Makes Pat Fitzgerald look like a dope. Looks like his post game quote stating that it was a good call/ bad hit was a tad premature.

Seamus O'Toole said...

Just so other readers are clear on what you mean by that, here is the self-righteous comment you're referring to. Said Pat Fitzgerald with a completely straight face:

"It was a helmet-to-helmet hit, ... and it was the right call. It shows young people playing football right now that using your headgear or aiming for someone's head is not the way to play this game."

CRC and the team need to move on from this call and look at all the reasons why it shouldn't have come down to that, but as long as we fans are continuing the gripe-a-thon, I'd say Fitzgerald owes Jay Fullam a personal apology for accusing him of playing dirty.

AD said...

Moving forward, relevant other aspect to come out of that Tennessean piece was the fact that LS apparently lost his voice during the NW game and the O had to go to a silent snap count, which they say was to blame for the bungled 2pt conversion. LS reports that he'll be drinking honey to save his pipes for the LSU game.

Anonymous said...

Maybe Larry should wipe some honey on his throwing arm while he's at it. It it might improve his accuracy!

JB said...

Yeah, I understand the frustration, but also keep in mind that they called something similar earlier in the game against NU, when a Wildcat really barely touched a Vandy WR when he was out of bounds. Yes, I think it was a poor call. But they'd set the tone for those personal foul calls earlier in the game.

I wish they hadn't called it and allowed the Cats to punt instead, but let's be honest: with approximately 45 seconds left and no timeouts by the time you would have gotten the ball, it is exceedingly unlikely that the Dores were going to lead a tying drive.

That said, it was a stupid call, and I'd be pissed too. But lets not act like it was on par with the 2006 NBA finals or anything.