Heard In The Halls, Day 2: Interviewers become interviewed

Published: Wednesday, July 17, 2013 at 4:39 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, July 17, 2013 at 4:39 p.m.

HOOVER, Ala. — It’s always humorous to see writers interviewing writers and TV people interviewing TV people in the hallways at SEC Media Days. David Pollack, the former Georgia Bulldog and current ESPN analyst, seems to have a tape recorder or mini-cam in his face every minute he’s not on set. I asked him how many interviews he’s done this week. “About as many as you did during the Aaron Hernandez stuff,” he said. Good point.

*Paul Finebaum, who has been hired by the SEC Network and will soon move to Charlotte, N.C., said his radio show should be on in three weeks. Whether it’s on satellite radio or not has yet to be decided. Finebaum is here to do a little TV work with the Worldwide Leader.

*Talked to an SEC official about next year’s schedule. He said the biggest issue is molding schedules with non-conference games around conference games and making sure there are enough quality games each weekend. He also said one thing that people don’t realize is that they have to make sure there is enough content each weekend for their TV partners. “It would be easy for one school to do its schedule and say, ‘There it is,’ ” he said. “But we have to do 14 and there is no blank canvas because of the non-conference games.” He said the release will come sooner than later. “And then we’ll do the next one.” The interesting thing is that they could do the schedules to 2015 and ’16 and then have the league decide to go to nine conference games and they’ll have to change them.

*I pulled Steve Shaw aside after his presentation Wednesday morning and asked him about a couple of things. Shaw, who used to be one of the best officials in the SEC, is in his second year as supervisor of officials for the league. One thing I wanted to ask him about was a game last year between Florida and Missouri where the officials twice marked off 6-yard penalties for offsides. Is it reviewable? “Technically, it’s not in the rule books, but we want our guys to get the information down to the field that they might want to check their mark-off,” Shaw said. I also asked him about a national point of emphasis on coaches staying off the field this year. Will Muschamp was penalized in the Sugar Bowl by Big 10 officials for not staying in the coaches’ box. “We know guys get excited, but when they get in the way, we have to be able to call it,” he said.

*It’s not news that the Chick-fil-A Bowl is now the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl because it was announced a few weeks ago. But what was the reason? It was a condition of the College Football Playoff people for the Atlanta bowl to get into the mix. They want the bowls that will host playoff games to have something that is identifiable by more than simply a sponsor name (Fiesta, Orange, Sugar, etc.) Almost like the old days.

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