As a fisherman this article intrigues me. There has to be a reason a predatory fish is moving this far out of its natural habitat. The obvious answer is looking for food but that doesn’t explain why. My guess is commercial fishing interfering with the natural aquatic food chain but I’m no marine biologist. I just love getting out on the water and catching fish. I fou d this article by GeorgiaBeforePeople pretty cool. This isn’t typical at all for my blog but I hope you enjoy.

GeorgiaBeforePeople

Not long ago, Noel Todd caught an 8 foot long, 368 pound bull shark in Shell Creek which is located in Valona, Georgia.  Shell Creek is a brackish stream not far from the coast, so it’s not shocking that a shark  might be found here.  However, bull sharks have been sighted 2500 miles up the Amazon River.  The North American inland shark-catching record was set in 1937 when 2 fishermen caught a bull shark in the Mississippi River next to Alton, Illinois.

Lapshark?

“Nearly comatose” bull shark discovered in Lake Pepin, Minnesota which is connected to the Mississippi River.  This is the lake where Laura Ingalls’ father (of Little House on the Prairie fame) used to fish.  Bull sharks are tropical to semi-tropical species, not well adapted to such cold waters.  I discovered 15 months after posting my article that this photo is an APRIL FOOLS JOKE.  I was fooled and I…

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Friday Spring Practice Notes

I went to practice today and jotted down notes as it went on. I watched mostly skill position drills early due to their position to the view of the fans. I’ll go into more detail and my takes on Monday but here are my notes from today nonetheless.

-all rb’s look good on running play drills. They seem comfortable

-Milton is by far best route runner in the red zone check down drills

-Morrow drop in red zone. Doesn’t catch naturally

-Fred brown looks smooth in drills

-Jameon looks best shape since he’s been here

-Ricco Sanders is struggling

-Malcolm and Rojo are jacked. Big and ripped

-big hit by Redmond on pbu

-Nick James being disruptive

-James & Virges together were tough to deal with. Big & physical

-good 20ish yard grab by Rojo

-Josh Robinson runnin tough inside

-Jameon good routes, slick in traffic

-Carr has great hands, looks good

-Good run by Perkins. Shifty in traffic.

-Good grab by Hill in tight space

-Ladarius Perkins broke a long run

-Josh Robinson good run long run

-Jameon & Nickoe worked at fielding punts

-punter looked horrible early, boomed later on

-Skeleton passing drills the looked real good (Russell & WRs)

-Fred brown gets open easily

-int by Richie Brown

-great route and TD catch by Holloway. Slick double move to the corner of the end zone

-TD catch by Rojo on slant in traffic

-Brandon Hill is physical in red zone, good TD catch after defender contact

-Cox is physical at CB, looks real good. Plays mean

-great TD catch absorbing a big hit by Jeremy Chappelle

-Collins is much more hands on w/the whole D than Wilson was. Collins coaches every position

-Jameon is almost unguardable 1 on 1

-Malcolm w/a nice TD catch. He’s targeted in the red zone

-Nice TD reception by Milton. Good receiver out of the backfield.

-Quay and Nick together and motivated= a lot of disruption

-O line got good drive in goal line scrimmage situations to end practice

Way Too Early SEC Top 6 Power Rankings

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1) Alabama
Can we really argue with Nick Saban at this time? Until someone unseats them, they remain at the top accepting all challengers.

2) South Carolina
The Ole Ball Coach has his best squad since he’s been in Columbia. If they can start off 3-0 they can emerge as the main threat to dethrone Bama and Saban. Would it not be fitting for Spurrier to pull this off?

3) Georgia
Can nice guy Mark Richt finally get his team to play with the killer instinct? He certainly has the offensive weaponry to do so with senior QB Aaron Murray. If Todd Grantham can get that defense playing at a high level, watch out.

4) LSU
This is probably my pick that most disagree with. I think Zach Mettenberger gets to that next level and elevates the Tigahs play to challenge Bama in the West. Questions on defense but they have the athletes. What about the voodoo in Death Valley?

5) Florida
It didn’t take long for the Gators to take on the tough as nails demeanor of their coach Will Muschamp. The defense will again be really good. Can Jeff Driskel improve and make them a threat through the air? That is the question.

6) Texas A&M
Kevin Sumlin’s team has more to prove than any of the rest of the power 6. Johnny Manziel was electric on his way to the Heisman. Is he still focused? Will we see a sophomore slump? Their defense was ranked 9th in total D and 7th in scoring D in the conference; plus they lost all their top end talent. The defense must improve if they want higher levels of success.

For in depth analysis of the Eastern Division Power 3 teams https://3rdand57.wordpress.com/2013/03/28/sec-east-power-3/

For in depth analysis of the Western Division Power 3 teams https://3rdand57.wordpress.com/2013/03/27/sec-west-power-3-way-too-early-predictions/

SEC East Power 3: Way Too Early Predictions

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  1. South Carolina

My pick to win the East is the Gamecocks. Steve Spurrier finally has amassed the talent the “Ole Ball Coach” needs to not only win his division but possibly the entire SEC. Connor Shaw played much of the year banged up but was still able to compile 2,391 yards and account for 20 td’s through the air and on the ground. If he can stay healthy he seems to be primed for a monster year. In back up duty, Dylan Thompson was good for 10 td tosses with only 2 interceptions. Replacing Marcus Lattimore will not be easy but rising sophomore Mike Davis averaged over 5 yards a carry and seems like a great option to inherit the bulk of the carries. Losing Ace Sanders hurts but returning leading WR Bruce Ellington (40 rec 7 td) and big play WR Damiere Byrd (26.14 ypc) ensure the WR corps will be stocked with playmakers. The offensive line remains mostly intact, only having to replace the C position.  On defense it all starts with the line. Arguably the best in the country, Jadaveon Clowney, Kelcy Quarles, and Chaz Sutton return 38.5 TFL from last year. They are poised to wreak more havoc. The biggest question mark is at LB where they lost 5 of their top 6 guys. Their hoping the talented but inexperienced group’s transition will be eased by the dominance of the DL. The secondary only has to replace the FS position with all the other positions having incumbent starters who combined for 6 INT’s last year.  The schedule will tell the tale for the Gamecocks. They open with North Carolina, at Georgia, then Vandy. They also get Florida and Clemson at home at the end of the year. Definitely a tough schedule but they should have the talent and coaching to overcome it.

2. Georgia

Mark Richt returns a team that was seconds away from beating Bama which would have given them the right to slaughter Notre Dame and be national champions. Again, it all starts and finishes with senior QB Aaron Murray (3893 yds 36 TD 10 INT) who should be a Heisman contender. Fantastic freshman duo Todd Gurley and Keith Marshall combined for 2,144 yds and 25 TD’s and both averaged over 6 yards a carry. Michael Brown and Michael Mitchell return at WR and as sophomores they combined for 64 catches and 8 TD. Mitchell seems poised to be the next superstar WR at UGA. The entire offensive line returns intact and with the numbers the Murray and the RB’s put up last year, I expect more of the same. On the defensive side is where it gets dicey. In losses they averaged giving up 33.5 ppg. They lose the entire D line and DE Ray Drew is the only one with at least a little experience. A lot of new faces at LB too; they will count on Ramik Wilson and Amarlo Herrera and neither were starters last year. Basically a whole new front 7. Keeping with the reoccurring theme, UGA will also field a new secondary as well. Although they are young and talented they will have a hard time replacing Baccari Rambo, Branden Smith, and Shawn Williams. The schedule for UGA is a killer too. They open at Clemson and then get USC at home. They get LSU at home but travel to Vandy and Auburn and don’t forget about the cocktail party in Jacksonville.

3. Florida

After a resurgent 2012 featuring an 11-2 record, Will Muschamp’s Gators are ready to challenge for the East again. Florida’s ability to challenge will rest on the improvement of Jeff Driskel who passed for 1,646 yards 12 TD and only 5 INT. For them to really take the next step, Driskel will have to as well. Last year freshman Matt Jones played pretty well in limited carries averaging over 5 ypc. WR is a position where they need multiple younger guys to step up. Quinton Dunbar is the best playmaker returning. He had 36 catches and 4 TD’s last year. Florida only lost 2 seniors from last year’s O line. The group had a lot of injuries and played a bunch of guys. They return a lot of experience from an array of player. O line should be a strong point for the Gators next year. The Gators return a loaded group on the D line led by Dominique Easley, Leon Orr, and Jonathan Bullard who combined for 19 TFL last year. Also add in 2 highly touted juco guys in Damien Jacobs and Darius Cummings and they are set.  The LB’s are led by Jelani Jenkins and Ronald Powell even though he is more of a hybrid. At CB they return studs in Marcus Roberson and Loucheiz Purifoy but hey also signed #1 hs CB recruit Vernon Hargreaves III who many believe to start immediately. Matt Elam going pro hurts at S but they are loaded with talent there as well. I expect a slight dip without Elam but nothing terribly noticeable. Of all the East contenders, Florida has the best schedule. They have 2 road test at LSU and USC but get the rest of the big games at home (I’m counting Jacksonville as home). Georgia, Vandy, and FSU are their other test. Those 2 road trips will make or break their chances.

“Why did they cover that up?”

“Get The Picture” lays out why the NCAA’s president Mark Emmert is such a joke in this latest happening. How in the world can fans have faith in the NCAA?

Get The Picture

Would it surprise you to learn that the NCAA hasn’t been totally forthcoming in its whitewash self-investigation of its behavior in the Miami/Nevin Shapiro matter?  Yeah, well, me neither.

The NCAA investigator who took over the University of Miami case last May attempted, as her fired predecessor did, to use Nevin Shapiro’s attorney to help build a case against Miami – a detail curiously omitted from the NCAA-commissioned report detailing the NCAA’s improper handling of the case, according to an email exchange between the parties that was relayed to me by two people.

Meanwhile, UM also will allege that NCAA investigators lied to interview subjects by claiming that other people interviewed made comments they never made, in order to trick the subjects into revealing incriminating information they otherwise might not have, according to multiple officials familiar with the NCAA’s case against UM and former coaches. UM believes such behavior is…

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SEC West Power 3: Way Too Early Predictions

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1)Alabama
How can you pick against Alabama at this point? Nick Saban has his guys hitting on all cylinders and competing for a national title yearly. The weak point will be the O line. They lose 3 NFL caliber players across the front but return a talented group. The group is led by lone junior Anthony Steen and sophomore phenom Cyrus Kouandjio. I don’t expect to see much drop off with the talent they return. AJ McCarron also gets weapons aplenty in TJ Yeldon, Kevin Norwood, and Amari Cooper returning at the skill positions. The schedule sets up nicely this year. I really don’t think anyone can question an Alabama defense under Saban at this point. The lone road test is in the 2ndgame at Texas A&M but the revenge factor will keep the Tide motivated. They get their other remaining challenges at home (LSU, Ole Miss, and Tennesee). Factoring in returning talent plus the schedule and the Crimson Tide should be kings of the SEC again.
 
2)LSU
This is my surprise pick of the group. LSU lost a total of 10 underclassmen to the draft, not to mention graduating seniors and the Tigers will field a largely new team in 2013. O line is the biggest concern, particularly tackle, and they slide out La’el Collins from his guard spot and rising sophomore Vadal Alexander mans the other. The interior line has more upperclassmen and should be fine. Even though Michael Ford and Spencer Ware declared for the draft, Jeremy Hill and Alfred Blue would have been ahead on the depth chart anyway. The defense took the bigger hit with Sam Montgomery and Barkevious Mingo moving on to the NFL but I don’t expect the defense to take the dip that others do. LSU has elite athletes everywhere on the roster and Tommy Moffett will have those guys ready to go come fall. I expect LSU to field another elite defense next year. The real key to LSU is Zach Mettenberger. We saw flashes last year, such as the Alabama game, where he played lights out. I expect a much better Mettenberger this year with his gained experience and the Tigers riding him to challenging Bama for the Western Division crown. The schedule will decide LSU’s season. Road trips to Alabama and Georgia are crucial and a split is needed at the minimum. Their remaining tough tests are at home with Florida and Texas A&M coming to Death Valley.
 
3) Texas A&M
I have a feeling that A&M will be the trendy pick to challenge Bama for the west this year. I think they will be very good but I see a 3rd place finish in their future. They return Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel and most of his weapons. Running Back Ben Malena (919 total yards) and receivers Mike Evans, Thomas Johnson, and Malcome Kennedy (138 combined catches) all return ready to light up big numbers again. No doubt the biggest loss on offense was Luke Joeckel but graduated center Patrick Lewis departure also hurts. Jake Matthews staying and sliding to LT will help but as a whole can they protect Manziel like last year’s unit? The losses on the D line of Spencer Nealy and Damontre Moore hurt badly. This unit will have to step it up to replicate last year’s group. Linebacker was hit hard by graduation and will be another inexperienced group. Bottom line on A&M’s defense is that they lost most of their high end talent off of a middle of the road defense last year. They were 7th in scoring and 9thin total defense in the conference. Any dip in what they did last year and their chances of challenging for the west decline dramatically. Another factor against them is that every coordinator in the conference has had a whole offseason to break down A&M/Manziel tape. I think he will see a slight dip in production as well. Alabama and Vandy are both tough games they get at home. Their road slate includes trips to LSU, Ole Miss, and Arkansas. To have a prayer they must win 4 of those 5 but I can see them losing 2 at a minimum with 3 as a solid possibility. Don’t forget that 3rd in the SEC West is still makes A&M a really good team who could beat anybody on any given Saturday.

Rick Ray reviews roller coaster first season at helm of MSU

1 thing I know for sure is that I appreciate the effort that Rick Ray’s team showed this year. A depleted roster and tons of injuries weren’t enough to make this team give up. I’m really anxios to see what we can do next year with a full roster. Hats off to Rick Ray and squad this year. Great season ending write-up by the Hail State Beat.

HailStateBEAT

As the month of March draws to a close, so has Rick Ray’s first season as Mississippi State’s basketball coach.

Boy, what a season it was.

Mixed amongst the lows of injuries, suspensions and losses were the highs of SEC wins, a surprisingly successful final stretch run and a huge turnout by students for an equally big victory over Ole Miss.

ZLVIOGLWWDZSRTK.20130108195915On Wednesday, Ray reflected on his inaugural campaign as a head coach, while also looking forward to year two.

Sure, the losses column mounted a bit too high for his liking, but looking past records and final scores, the head coach of the Bulldogs saw a lot to like.

Namely, he saw his players – and his team – get better, even if final results didn’t always show it.

MSU even ended up with two freshmen – Gavin Ware and Craig Sword – on the All-SEC Freshman Team, while…

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