Hooker: Dear Scroggins column if Kiffin was writing

Dave Hooker

I believe it's important to test oneself as a sportswriter.

Sure, I could turn out another award-winning recruiting column, but sometimes it's good to write outside the box.

So for this week's recruiting column, I won't be Dave Hooker, whom you know and love. I'll be Lane Kiffin, the younger, taller and perhaps slightly better looking football coach at the University of Tennessee.

If you're missing Dave already, he will return next week.

I'm Lane and I'll be trying to convince Jesse Scroggins to reconsider his commitment to Southern California.

I'm not going to tell the star prospect from Lakewood (Calif.) High School where to play college football yet. And I'm not going to bash USC. I coached there for six years.

However, I'm offering up 10 reasons why USC won't be the home he envisions it will be:

No. 1: Matt Barkley. Have you heard he's the starter? Yep, just happened. The freshman beat out Aaron Corp, who is a pretty darn good player.

No. 2: Los Angeles smog. Do you realize what that stuff does to your lungs? Might as well start smoking cigarettes.

No. 3: Matt Barkley. Is he really just a freshman? And he beat out Corp, who is a junior? Wow, that Barkley guy must be good.

No. 4: L.A. traffic. It's even bad when there's not a Michael Jackson memorial.

No. 5: Matt Barkley. Have you heard how much he loves USC and that he'll likely spend four years there even if he were a top NFL prospect after his junior season.

No. 6: Earthquakes. I seem to remember hearing that the entire state of California could just slide into the ocean. I'm not saying that's guaranteed but it is a possibility.

No. 7: 2013. You might start by then. That all comes back to that Barkley kid. Man, he's awesome.

No. 8: Mark Sanchez. Sure Sanchez became a first-round NFL draft pick after just one full season at USC,but did you see him last week against the Baltimore Ravens? Eeesh. Looks like he could have used some more college experience. Too bad he sat on the bench for three years at USC.

No. 9: Cycles. USC is certainly on top now but how long can that last? Florida State and Miami were once that dominant before they dropped faster than one of Eric Berry's tackling victims.

The erosion has already started. I'm gone. Steve Sarkisian is gone. How much longer do the Trojans have on top? However, if anybody can keep them there, it's that Barkley kid.

No. 10: The Coliseum. There's not a good seat in the house. It's so spread out. I doubt your parents will even be able to see you sitting on the bench.

So now that you have ample reason not to sign with USC, here are 10 reasons to consider UT.

No. 1: Family. It's the only place outside of SoCal where you've got kin - as they say in Tennessee. Much of your mother's family lives in Memphis.

No. 2: Playing Time. Even if Nick Stephens wins the job in 2010, you can learn behind him and be the man in 2011. You'd practically be guaranteed to start three or four years.

No. 3: Pro-style offense. Want to make a little money playing football? I'll teach you how to harness your abilities and mold you into a top-flight NFL prospect thanks to my quarterback friendly offense.

No. 4: The SEC. It's simply the best college football conference in the nation. Just ask ESPN. They bet billions on its future success. Yes, that's billions with a "b", as in Barkley.

No. 5: Jim Chaney. He molded Drew Brees into a Pro Bowler. Kyle Orton isn't too bad either. Imagine what he could do with Barkley.

No. 6: Hungry fans. There was a time when a 10-win season in Knoxville was worth a big yawn. Now, fans want a winner but have much more realistic expectations. Win 10 at UT and you're a hero. Win 10 at USC and, well, you're still sitting behind that Barkley guy.

No. 7: Me. Ask Pete Carroll about me. He trusted me to run his offense and it worked out pretty well.

No. 8: Peyton Manning. He'll be a resource as soon as you step on campus. He'll work out with you in the off-season. Carson Palmer and Matt Leinart just don't have the same umph, do they?

Palmer and Leinart are good but they'll always be overshadowed by Manning - and of course Barkley.

(Think Barkley can win three Heisman trophies. It's never been done but I wouldn't bet against him.)

No. 9: Dave Hooker. You'll be covered by one of the brightest journalists in the nation.

No. 10: Neyland Stadium. Completely refurbished by the time you arrive on campus. And not a Barkley in sight.

Dave Hooker covers recruiting. He can be reached at hookerd@knoxnews.com.

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Comments » 57

panties4tebow writes:

No comment on the article but GO VOLS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

mbible1utk#324980 writes:

can anyone email or facebook this article to Jesse Scroggins?

CT_VOL writes:

You forgot "lazy" in the description of yourself. Did you just finish writing your August 19th blog?

Matthew writes:

Hooker, line and sinker.

mtownvol writes:

Umm - Shouldnt this be a Dear Jesse letter that Kiffin is writing?

beachvol writes:

Funny stuff, but I wouldn't feel confident with Jesse until he actually signed the papers in February. Most top QBs sign early and stick, but Jesse would hop back to USC at the earliest sign of Barkley faultering even a little. I'll put my hope in Tyler Bray switching his commitment. I think UT will blow him away next weekend, and I feel his commitment would be much more solid than Mr. Scroggins switching right now. Come February however, I'd welcome either one!

ninelivesinknoxville#601668 writes:

If Jesse Scroggins is as smart as we had hoped then I think he will be the one writing a letter to Lane Kiffin

newtonrail writes:

Nice.

InertGas writes:

in response to mbible1utk#324980:

can anyone email or facebook this article to Jesse Scroggins?

I'll bet he's already seen it.

TennesseeTuxedo writes:

I'll take Bray.

givehim6 writes:

Have nothing to add this time I think Dave said it all.

andy112382#209793 writes:

Tyler Bray - anyone see the Elite 11 camp on TV? Bray won the accuracy award and came in second for MVP only behind Jake Heaps.

The guy is huge and just needs some time in the weight room with Ausmus, I distinctly heard one of the guys running the camp say Bray looks like a guy who could spend 10+ years in the NFL.

andy112382#209793 writes:

BTW - Forgot to add #11....Wildfire season. Why would you want to live somewhere that has a wildfire season where it is the norm for a massive fire to sweep across the area?

behuman13 writes:

This was humoring...
But if he didn't want Tennessee earlier, then I'm fine with him sitting on the bench at USC for 4 years. We'll land some great guy who actually cares about the program

FWBVol writes:

I still say UT coaches need to find their way to Fort Walton Beach and take a look at Luke Barnes, the senior quarterback that will soon break all of Danny Wuerffel's records. And the kid is 6-3, 205, has a nice arm and runs a 4.6 40. That comes from his high school coach who is a straight shooter. Barnes has committed to Troy right now, but I think he'll end up getting a look from some bigger schools.

rdgshackelford writes:

who is barkley?

TennesseeTrojans writes:

Good one Hooker.

rockytopman writes:

That was funny, but the witch doctor takes the cake...

CoachFulmer writes:

Hilarious article. Six more days. . .

volzcrushm writes:

Barkely 24 Scroggins 0

beachvol1 writes:

Scroggins will end up at UCLA before coming to UT(to far from his mom's coat tail)

Vols033 writes:

in response to TennesseeTuxedo:

I'll take Bray.

Bray is better than Scroggins

Chris4Vols22 writes:

You fail at being Lane Kiffin, Hooker. This article blows.

arkyvol writes:

the downside for u.t. is that if barkley is as good as advertised, he will opt for a gazillion bucks over books and tuition at the end of next season, leaving scroggins an open throne.

Chris4Vols22 writes:

And who cares about Scroggins? That kid stirred up so much drama and he didn't pick us, let's move on. It's articles like these that make Tennessee fans seem desperate. If I were a Bama or Florida, or even USC fan, there's plenty of stuff in this article to laugh about.

VolGraduate writes:

I'll take bray also. I don't buy into stars. Look at our third string 5 star de

kdaff51 writes:

Hell, Im sold. Where do I sign? Oh by the way. Do I get to meet Layla?

kdaff51 writes:

in response to rdgshackelford:

who is barkley?

Charles, the golfer.

Cldvols1 writes:

I hear he's a pretty good QB but the kid just started his senior season in HS. Which is why I'm not gonna say UT needs to do everything to get him. The article does point out some interesting facts about UT and USC though. However, I'm a firm believer the Vols will recruit a big name QB once it's evident the freshman start contributing. 6 days n countin Go Vols!!!

HallowedHill writes:

No. 11 - Have you seen Matt Barkley yet? He's obviously Pete Carroll's long lost love child. USC will be adding additional padding to the pants of all other USC QB's... to protect against splinters when ridin' the pine.

Bigger_Al writes:

Nice, Mr. Hooker.

txvolsfan writes:

in response to andy112382#209793:

BTW - Forgot to add #11....Wildfire season. Why would you want to live somewhere that has a wildfire season where it is the norm for a massive fire to sweep across the area?

You mean #11 as in Bryce Brown(#11) not a bad guy to hand the ball to or check down in the flats to. He can make your YPA look pretty good!!!

warriorman86#667191 writes:

Scroggins>>>Bray, and it's not even close. Bray has serious additude problems. Plus, I'll take the kid who USC wants. Bray and Scroggins "tryed out" for the scholly. Scroggins won out. But if you guys would rather take a commit from SDSU than USC so be it.

smokey_vols writes:

This was one of the best articles I have read in a long time. I caught myself laughing out loud. The bad part is it's all true. The kid did not make a wise choice that's for sure.

smokey_vols writes:

in response to Cldvols1:

I hear he's a pretty good QB but the kid just started his senior season in HS. Which is why I'm not gonna say UT needs to do everything to get him. The article does point out some interesting facts about UT and USC though. However, I'm a firm believer the Vols will recruit a big name QB once it's evident the freshman start contributing. 6 days n countin Go Vols!!!

Within a week now...I'm gettin wired more and more each day. Can't wait to see this team live and feel the energy at Neyland. I love it!

blitzshoot writes:

Ruined the article with #9.

murrayvol writes:

in response to mbible1utk#324980:

can anyone email or facebook this article to Jesse Scroggins?

Fear not! He'll read it.

murrayvol writes:

We're talkin'Pulitzer here....or at least the TN sportswriter award that J. Adams has won multiple times.

Good effort Dave. I give it a 9.5.

reidtownriverrat writes:

in response to arkyvol:

the downside for u.t. is that if barkley is as good as advertised, he will opt for a gazillion bucks over books and tuition at the end of next season, leaving scroggins an open throne.

Barkley will only be a soph next year, he will be there at least thru 2011

VOLS_R_BEST_DEAL_WITH_IT writes:

Ha number nine gave me a chuckle. Good job Dave

civilianvol_formerly_marinevol writes:

in response to mbible1utk#324980:

can anyone email or facebook this article to Jesse Scroggins?

The coaching staff has his home phone #, cell phone #, e-mail address, home mailing address, etc. I'm sure this article has been sent to him every way possible.

tdforvols writes:

Forget about Scroggins. If he is only the third or fourth string QB at USC then he sure dang isn't good enough to lead the future Vols. Kiffin has raised the bar and I fully expect a stud QB will be signed in due time.

khelton657 writes:

Now that was pretty good,,made sense too...

johnlg00 writes:

in response to FARRAGUT0406:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I love the look and sometimes the energy of Neyland, but the seating for average fans is about as comfortable as a galley-slave's rowing bench, only with less room! The only solution is to stand up and holler the whole game, and I'm fine with that(;-D)!

golfballs03 writes:

I would think that Barkley making the team is actually better for Scroggins. Otherwise, couldn't Barkley redshirt and then have 3 more years after that?

volfanNPa writes:

I don't want this guy. I'd rather have Bray. This kid wants to sit the bench for at least 3 years at USC I say go ahead. I really feel once Bray comes for his visit he will commit to the vols very quickly. Bray is a tall kid with a cannon of an arm that will fit very well in our offense. Go VOLS!

volfanNPa writes:

in response to reidtownriverrat:

Barkley will only be a soph next year, he will be there at least thru 2011

He has already said that he will be there for 4 years. even if that means he has to pass up being the no 1 pick in the draft.

volfanNPa writes:

in response to DeltaCharlie:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I agree. Why wouldn't a kid want to go to Bama. He can sell books. get free fishing trips. and actually make a little money to play ncaa football.

AllVol2008#1353998 writes:

Great article, Dave. No doubt about it. A little lame, but damned true. Best thing I've read on here for a while.

CT_VOL writes:

in response to DeltaCharlie:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Delta, good point but please blame this pathetic fake journalist for begging, not us fans.

Frank

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