Posted on: August 26, 2011 9:52 am
Edited on: August 26, 2011 12:11 pm

Les Miles is in an impossible position

LSU football coach Les Miles is in a brutal position, the kind of situation they don't teach anywhere. This is on-the-job learning right here -- and whatever Les Miles does, he's wrong.

If he suspends star quarterback Jordan Jefferson because of reports that Jefferson did (but maybe did not) kick a prone victim during a fight outside a Baton Rouge bar, Miles runs the risk of hurting his player, his team and his school for something Jefferson never did.

If he doesn't suspend Jefferson, as he has not done so far, Miles runs the risk of allowing a potential felon to play, and all the national tut-tutting that such leniency produces.

Meantime, no charges have been filed. Forgive Les Miles for not knowing what happened outside that bar, seeing how the cops themselves still don't seem to have a grasp on it. Witnesses are offering contradictory accounts, but what's known is this: Jefferson and a large handful of teammates were out too late, busting curfew, hanging out at a bar. It was a stupid move, and it deserves punishment.

But how much punishment? What would be fair? Maybe we should let the facts come in, shall we? This isn't a case like -- to name just one -- Miami football, where the alleged scumbag isn't an alleged scumbag. He's an admitted scumbag. Nevin Shapiro says he helped scores of UM players violate NCAA rules. It's up to the school and the NCAA to figure out just how truthful Shapiro has been, but in the meantime it seems reasonable to believe the worst. Or even a fraction of the worst. Because a fraction of the worst would still be pretty damn bad.

As for LSU, well, shoot. Believing the worst -- believing that Jefferson is the reason a man has cracked vertebra after that fight -- would mean suspending Jefferson before the police have done their job. It would mean suspending Jefferson for something he possibly didn't do.

One of these days the cops will figure out what (they think) happened. And when charges come down -- as charges surely will come down against someone, or multiple someones, on the LSU football team -- Miles must act decisively. And I'm sure he will. Until then, though, I'm not sure he should suspend Jordan Jefferson.

Not sure I could do that, if I were Les Miles.

Go ahead. Call me an SEC shill. But you better ignore this story.

And this one.

And this one.

And ...

UPDATE, 11:52 a.m.: An arrest warrant has been issued for Jefferson (and linebacker Josh Johns). Now, it is absolutely time for Les Miles to suspended Jefferson (and Johns).

UPDATE, 12:12 p.m. And now there are reports (on Twitter!) that Jefferson and Johns have been suspended indefinitely. So it all worked out as it should have, in the end.

Posted on: April 4, 2011 12:24 am

Mizzou hires Frank Haith; Miami revels

HOUSTON -- In the most bizarre hire of this offseason, Missouri reportedly has hired Miami's Frank Haith -- a move that makes no sense, on any level, to anyone outside of Missouri AD Mike Alden's office.

The hire was confirmed by CBSSports.com's Gary Parrish. I'm writing it because he's busy, and I'm not. Who cares who writes it? Point is, Missouri panicked after being turned down by Matt Painter and went for a guy who wouldn't turn the school down.

Frank Haith had that going for him.

But not much else.

In seven years at Miami -- in a down era for the ACC -- Haith was 43-69 in league play and 129-101 overall. He went to one NCAA tournament, in 2008, and has gone 60-41 since. Known as a great recruiter under Rick Barnes at Texas, Haith hasn't shown that skill at Miami. Making you wonder if maybe the great recruiter at Texas was, you know, Rick Barnes.

Whatever the case, Miami fans were rejoicing on the Internet Sunday night to be done with Haith, and preparing for the Hurricanes' inevitable pursuit of Kansas State's Frank Martin -- who got his start in coaching in the Miami high school system and who is a force on the South Florida recruiting circuit to this day.

With Jacob Pullen graduating at Kansas State, the time could be right for Martin to go home. We'll see.

Category: NCAAB
Tags: Miami, Missouri
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