Morning Drop

What a weekend it was in the wide world of sports.

First and foremost, a fine second half defensive effort by my Indiana Hoosiers landed Coach Crean’s boys in the Sweet 16. It’s going to be a super Sweet 16. No, not that Super Sweet 16.

The rematch with Kentucky in the Georgia Dome this Friday night is going to be hyped – and it deserves every bit of hype. Remember what happened the first time Indiana and Kentucky met ? The greatest thing about the rematch, from a Hoosier perspective, is that IU really has nothing to lose, and everything to gain.

Kentucky? Their situation is quite the opposite – it’s championship or bust for Coach Calipari.

How about the B1G Conference’s success this past weekend? A 9-2 record to boast, with 4 teams in the Sweet Sixteen. I can’t say I’m surprised – but a lot of you should be.

Finally, Peyton Manning has a new home – Denver. Number 18 pledged his allegiance to the great John Elway, and delivered disappointing news to the 49ers and Titans front office staffs. The anti-Lebron will be taking his talents to Mile High stadium, and although the city has had quite the love affair (which city wouldn’t?) with Tim Tebow, a few 400 yard, multiple touchdown games should have Manning jerseys flying off the racks.

As for the 5 year, 96 million dollar contract Manning just signed with the Broncos….um, yikes? I have doubts about Manning getting through year one, considering the man is coming off of four (yes, four) neck operations in a short period of time, so I can’t even begin to imagine how a bright, front-office employee landed on 5 years.

As for Mr. Tebow’s future, that’s another story. A story the media will most certainly saturate the public with until they can be saturated no more. I agree strongly with the assessment Steve Young made of the situation. Tebow has to be embraced by both the front office AND coaching staff that brings him in. It doesn’t take a football analyst to realize Tebow is not your prototypical NFL quarterback, but the young man has proven that he is a winner and has the right intangibles to lead a team.

Honestly, one of the greatest things Tebow can do for a franchise in need is put fans in the stands. He has an unbelievable following nationally, but he is Florida’s untouchable child. There are three NFL franchises in the Sunshine State, and the common denominator between them is their need to sell tickets – especially in Jacksonville.

Jumping back to NCAA ‘ball (I can jump around, since this is a rant and all), one of my favorite results of coaches exiting the tournament is the coaching carousel that begins because of it. Already, we are hearing VCU head coach Shaka Smart being courted by Illinois. While the lure of being able to land higher-profile recruits will be there with the Illini, they can’t offer better job security than what Smart currently has at Virginia Commonwealth. And, as our friends at Grantland have pointed out, Bruce Weber’s 2011 salary at the helm of Illinois basketball was just slightly higher at 1.3 million, than Smart’s was at VCU, at 1.2 million.

And finally, on a non-sports related note: do yourself a favor and read the timeline of Karl Welzein at @DadBoner on Twitter. Trust me on this one, even if you haven’t before.

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