Nevertheless, the DP does owe you guys a few links to end your weekend. As always, we can't go forward without a little from Derek Webb — things have been moving fast there lately, as his new album is apparently actually going to drop (after an apparent controversy over its release). In any case, today's song is not from his new album, but instead a reprise (sort of) from his first solo project: "Lover, Part 2."
Always a blast. With that, your weekend in links ...
— First things first: after nearly 2 seasons of crossing their fingers and hoping he gets better, the Braves finally found a taker for Jeff Francoeur. Hard to quibble with this one, even if it's not entirely clear Frenchy and his trading partner (Ryan Church) aren't the same player. Regardless, watching Francoeur on a daily basis the last 2 seasons has been a frustrating exercise: he just doesn't seem to have improved one iota as a baseball player since the day he came up with the organization (as opposed to, say, his minor-league buddy Brian McCann, who has evolved into one of the two best hitting catchers in the bigs, as well as the franchise's only All-Star). For more breakdown on that, check out Chop Talk.
— Apparently out of cliched college football posts, TBL decided to re-hash The Toughest Coaching Jobs in College Football, one of those gimmicky lists that screams "it's July and nothing else is going on" (see the previous post on this blog, for example).
Obviously, I have to take umbrage with their assertions about Alabama's fans, if only because they took the word of Bill Curry, a preening schmo who has been playing the victim about his experience at Alabama since he decided he couldn't stand the heat any longer 20 years ago. Apparently, because some drunken idiot allegedly threw a brick at an office window that turned out to be Curry's, that makes this the most insane environment for football fans on the planet. Whatever.
— RBR has one of its typically awesome posts up from a fan blog: the case for the 1941 team as national champs. It's kind of a waste of time trying to defend the program's tradition against the ignoramuses (ignorami?) who do it just to push our buttons, but a good show nonetheless.
— One of our own got paid this week: Rashad Johnson and the defending NFC champs agreed to terms. Quite a story, really. While we're here, here's a look at recruiting for 2010. Also, BSR takes a look at the monster that is Terrence Cody.
— Steve Spurrier's offense and the NFL: Smart Football has the skinny. And it's predictably fantastic. Deadspin also has a post about the use of the flea flicker.
— Because this blog seeks to pacify Peter von Herrmann as often as possible, here's Tony Barnhart's ACC Coastal preview. Here's to the Teckities, and a conference championship game that draws more than 55 people.
— What fans will haunt your college football season? This link gives you an idea. And since someone has to comment on the recent release of the fall TV schedule, Jerry breaks it down for us all.
On that note, a moment of silence for Mike Patrick, a relatively good technical announcer who unfortunately lost a ton of credibility with his audience in one swift moment:
And yeah, he was probably trying to make a light-hearted joke. He's guilty of poor timing and not giving his co-anchor a chance to join in. Too bad, really.
— Finally, a bit of bittersweet news: Ian Rapaport, like most good beat reporters, is moving on to other things. I'm sure Nick Saban will miss his snide questions and refusal to take everything the coach says at face value, as much as Rap will miss St. Nick's odd rants at things he didn't actually say or write.
One thing worth noting for Ian: he's one of the first in-state reporters to put a face on his coverage through his al.com blog, and was perfectly willing to open himself up to criticism (oftentimes very unfair and personal) from readers throughout the whole thing. Saban wouldn't ever say so, obviously, but he'll probably notice when Ian isn't there for the first press conference in a few weeks.
And thus, good luck and best wishes to I-Rap, one of the best in the business. May God hold you in the palm of His hand.