Jeff Schultz blog 

This AJC sports blogger takes things seriously when he has to, but he really would rather not

Predictions: No Gurley, no problem for Dogs

  • 3:59 pm Thursday, October 30th, 2014 by Jeff Schultz
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According to suburban legend (defined as Googling outside of the perimeter),  Halloween has its origins in the ancient Celtic festival known as “Samhain” (pronounced, “sah-win,” because Celtics couldn’t spell) and is celebrated at the end of the harvest season, when the worlds of the living and the dead overlap, and mayhem ensues, and the dead rise (except B.J. Upton), and desperate housewives dress up like Lola and Candi on Stages 1 and 2, and evil spirits roam neighborhoods and sometimes go on to coach at Louisville, or get recruited by Florida State, or become president of the NCAA.

(I know. That [More]

Dumb rules are no excuse for Todd Gurley

  • 9:36 am Wednesday, October 29th, 2014 by Jeff Schultz
Georgia running back Todd Gurley should be considered leading Heisman candidate. (Brant Sanderlin, AJC)

(Updated: 5:45 p.m.)

I understand this is going to be a difficult question for those who bleed red-and-black. But seriously: Did you really believe that Todd Gurley did this only once? Did you really think that one day he acted impulsively, took $400 from some memorabilia cretin named Bryan Allen to sign 80 items, and never did it again?

Logic indicated otherwise, and evidence supported logic.

Gurley is gone for four games, not the two already served. He didn’t receive $400 for signatures. He received more than $3,000. The NCAA hit him with a four-game suspension, or the equivalent of 30 percent of [More]

Muschamp expects NCAA to clear Gurley

  • 2:00 pm Monday, October 27th, 2014 by Jeff Schultz
Georgia still hoping for NCAA to clear Todd Gurley before Florida game. (Jason Getz/AJC)

While Georgia continues to wait for word on whether Todd Gurley will be given clearance by the NCAA to play in Saturday’s game against Florida, Gators coach Will Muschamp is already operating on the assumption that the Bulldogs’ running back will there.

“Absolutely. I would expect him to play,” Muschamp said Monday at his weekly news conference in Gainesville.

The comments were in response to a question about Gurley’s uncertain status. Muschamp had alluded to Gurley during his general remarks about Georgia to open his conference: “Extremely talented running back in Todd Gurley. One of the best football players in college football. [More]

Predictions: Jolly old loss for Falcons

  • 5:07 pm Thursday, October 23rd, 2014 by Jeff Schultz
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According to Thursday’s London Mirror (“The Intelligent Tabloid”), under “Football” news, Tottenham was looking for a win over Asteras Tripolis, a Spanish goalie may rehab with Manchester United, and Balotelli threatened a woman who took pictures of his Ferrari.

According to the London Sun (the more interesting paper), there is still time for women to enter the “Curvy Cover Girl” contest and win 1,000 pounds and a modeling contract with Milk Management (I’m not making that up). Also, Natasha tells her heartbreaking story, “I hid under fella’s bed… as rat romped with another.”

I’ve come to this conclusion: The Falcons left the [More]

Why yes for Mo’ne Davis but no for Gurley?

  • 9:31 am Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014 by Jeff Schultz
Little League star Mo'ne Davis was cleared to do a car commercial by the NCAA. (Brian Garfinkel)

This blog has been updated with the news that Georgia is filing a request with the NCAA for Todd Gurley’s reinstatement. A full column will be posted later today.

UPDATE: Here’s a link to the full column.

Here are two updates on the Todd Gurley situation:

•  The Georgia tailback is still under suspension, but school officials announced it will file a request for reinstatement with the NCAA later today and hopes to have him available for “our next game,” which against Florida next week. The question is whether the NCAA will relatively rubber-stamp this and limit Gurley’s suspension to two games [More]

Georgia being realistic, unlike Jimbo Fisher

  • 7:53 am Wednesday, October 15th, 2014 by Jeff Schultz
Jameis Winston, Florida State

I understand Florida State coach Jimbo Fisher’s desire to stand up for his guy. But at what point does even he realize how silly he sounds?

In regards to more than 950 items with quarterback Jameis Winston’s authenticated signature being claimed by a company, James Spence Authentication, Fisher told media in Tallahassee Tuesday. “Feel very good. Talked to [Jameis] and everything, people have talked to the owners of the company and different people, from what I understand. We’ll see.”

More: “He’s never taken a dime for anything. He’s signed thousands of things. I mean, the guy sits for an hour and a [More]

Short takes: Georgia responds in big way (34-0)

  • 3:59 pm Saturday, October 11th, 2014 by Jeff Schultz
Hutson Mason and John Theus celebrate Mason's 11-yard touchdown run in the second quarter. (Getty Images)

COLUMBIA, Mo. — For my full column on Georgia’s 34-0 win over Missouri, click here.

Here are my three “Short Takes” on the game.

1. DEFENSE GROWS UP: Georgia’s young defense had some erratic moments in the first five games of the season, which was expected given the number of personnel changes and the overall youth. But the Bulldogs dominated Missouri. The Tigers had five turnovers, including four interceptions. They managed only 28 net yards on their first five possessions. They failed to convert a third down  (0-for-7). Some of it was the result of their own ineptitude but a [More]

LIVE: Georgia gives it a go minus Gurley

  • 10:47 am Saturday, October 11th, 2014 by Jeff Schultz
If the Vanderbilt game was Todd Gurley's exit from UGA, the Dogs must improve in other areas. (Brant Sanders/AJC)

COLUMBIA, Mo. — Good morning and welcome back to actual football. It should be a nice departure from everything else that’s happened since 5:23 p.m. Thursday night, when Georgia sent out the following email: “University of Georgia tailback Todd Gurley has been indefinitely suspended from competition by the UGA Athletic Association during an ongoing investigation into an alleged violation of NCAA rules.”

The NCAA is expected to resolve the Gurley matter by early next week. The AJC’s Danny Robbins and Chip Towers reported that the ongoing probe into Gurley’s relationship with memorabilia dealers who allegedly paid him to sign items may [More]

Minus Gurley, Dogs have flaws to overcome

  • 2:19 pm Friday, October 10th, 2014 by Jeff Schultz
Hutson Mason may not have Todd Gurley to hand ball to for rest of season. (AP)

Georgia plays its final regular-season game in seven weeks. In the perfect Bulldog world, there will be a berth in the SEC championship game in two months and a golden ticket to the inaugural college football playoffs in the first two weeks of January.

In other words, at worst — or best — Georgia running back Todd Gurley would be free in three months to start making his millions as a professional athlete. But there are growing indications that Gurley couldn’t wait and now there’s a good chance he has played his final college game.

A source has told the AJC [More]

Predictions: No Gurley, no Dogs, no kidding

  • 7:14 pm Thursday, October 9th, 2014 by Jeff Schultz
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Welcome back to Weekend Predictions and Occasional Spectacular Grease Fires, Inc., where we will vigorously defend your right to deduct all incorrect financial assumptions that the Falcons’ defense might someday force a punt but never will defend Adrian Peterson, who is alleged to have pilfered donations meant for his fraud foundation to fund an orgy, leading to the question, “Wait. Hookers are deductible? Or does that go under “miscellaneous business expense” with printer ink, desk chairs and Swedish independent contractors?

More on A.P.’s option offense later.

But first, we go to the big story: The End of the World.

There was an incorrect [More]