Check out the first batch of weekly answers…
1) Does the departure of Nikki Caldwell say something about UCLA’s changing profile as an attractive place to coach or is it more about LSU’s crazy money or is it about NC’s personal situation? – bruinstc
In my opinion, it’s 10,000 times more B and C than A. First of all, while yeah, UCLA as a whole has a ton of prestige and history, the women’s basketball program is not one of the fixtures of the sport. The Bruins have been conference champions once since 1979. So the idea that UCLA is an attractice place to coach may be true, but its not as if the women’s basketball program is legendary. Then you take the hike in money and the fact that LSU has had major national success for going on a decade, and it’s a pretty clear jump in both pay and prestige. And maybe the most important reason of all: I think it’s pretty clear to everyone that Caldwell is going to be a superstar coach, perhaps groomed for Pat Summitt’s job at Tennessee when she’s done, and returning to the SEC is just a no-brainer, in terms of making those recruiting inroads and connections. All of that said, this was a gut-wrenching decision for her, and I was told she was legitimately torn, bawling on the phone.
2) Is there any chance Moore or Ayers come back after there somewhat disappointing showings at the combine… or are they unable to because they signed with an agent? – UCLABZ
To end this speculation for once and for all: Once you declare for the NFL Draft, that’s it. No turning back. It’s not the NBA, where you can postpone hiring an agent and test the waters. So even if Rahim Moore ran a 12.1 40-yard dash and a three-inch vert and two reps on the bench press, he’s in. Done.
3) I heard you were a joke stealer. What is the best joke you have stolen? – Anonymous
Yeah, I’m a regular Babyface Nelson. Hide the kids. Hide the purses. Don’t even come near me with a diamond necklace on, I’m liable to headbutt you and snatch it right from your neck. But joke? Umm…”I’m thinking about buying a new mattress, but it’s a big decision. I should probably sleep on it.” – James Frey
4) I read your articles off an RSS reader and lately, it has been truncating your articles so that I have to read it on the insidesocal website itself. Would it be possible to return it to the untruncated form that we have had in the previous months? Thanks Jon, you’re the best. – Raymond
Ummmm…can you translate that for me in 5-year-old language. I don’t get technology.
5) Can you break down Datone Jones strengths and weaknesses please? – Anonymous
Jones’ simple measurables are very impressive, as he has great size and speed for the position. He has good rush moves and knows how to feel the pocket, which is a huge key at defensive end. They have to sense where the quarterback not only is, but wants to go. Why do think you see so many bad defensive ends just run up the field and get blocked out of the play? Jones’ weaknesses right now are his pad level, which is correctable by coaching, but he also engages the blocker too often, which is only self-correctable. You watch some of the best defensive ends out there, and they are able to either shuck blocks quickly or not even let the lineman engage them. Remember Deacon Jones? He could get blocked, but his head slap was so damn powerful that the lineman just fell to the ground and Jones pounced. In today’s game, linemen are MUCH faster, so its almost a chess match BEFORE they’re engaged, and Jones sometimes loses that match. But I have no doubt he’ll be one of the best linemen in the conference this season.