Mandy Mitchell

The Mitchell Report: Dooley and the Duck Head

Posted November 18, 2012

This will serve as my weekly column for notes about things I find interesting outside the Triangle. Enjoy my insights. I will enjoy sharing them ..


Dooley is Done

It's not surprising in the least to see Derek Dooley looking for work. You can't go 0-7 in the SEC, with a loss to Vandy, and keep your gig. Dooley managed to take a team with a couple of high NFL draft picks and make them one of the worst in the conference. They did, however, beat NC State. Dooley's last win over a BCS conference school was against the Wolfpack. Not sure that will win you any trivia contests down the road, but it does get you thinking how long it will be before Tom O'Brien joins Dooley in unemployment. NC State made Tennessee look really good. We learned very quickly they are not. Derek Dooley's firing does let me bring up a point to save TOB. Don't ever fire a coach unless you have a plan. I am betting UT wishes it had thought things through before showing Phillip Fulmer the door. Always best to have options or you wind up with a Derek Dooley- a guy who had a 4-8 record at Louisiana Tech the year before he arrived in Knoxville.

Zoubek's Bakery

Yahoo Sports updated us on the business ventures of former Duke star Brian Zoubek who now has his own bakery in New Jersey. It seems "Dream Puffz" is doing rather well for itself. Zoubek is the only start from Duke's 2010 national championship team not to be playing professional basketball right now. He, instead, spends his time baking. I am working hard to get WRAL to let us travel to Jersey to catch up with Zoubek, and I'd really like a free cupcake.

NASCAR needs change

Another NASCAR season is over and we have a new, fresh champion. Does anyone really care? Brad Keselowski is from Michigan. That's not exactly the heart of NASCAR country. The sport's biggest problem right now is its fan base can not relate to the drivers. This is not a new idea, but it's just been getting worse every year. As the older drivers retire we continue to see the sport move from its roots. NASCAR tries to fix this problem by telling the guys to "have at it" on the track and seems to encourage fighting. It's gaining more of a WWE feel and it's not working. The sport is making a few changes for the 2013 season. For example, you will now see the driver's name displayed on the back of each car. That will help fans identify the driver but it will do nothing to help fans identify with the driver.

Missing Duck Head

It's amazing how I can usually find a mascot related story once a week. The Oregon Duck's head fell off during a skydiving stunt he was doing for ESPN. They had to do a search for the head which was missing. ESPN's Chris Fowler tweeted about this saying it was "only the third string duck head". Eventually it was found and all is good in the Oregon world, except for that whole Stanford thing.

Heisman Hype

I'm not a fan of any preseason predictions. I understand we all want to talk about who will be good each year, but who among us had Notre Dame in the National Title game? One of my favorite things to do each year at this time is look at a preseason Heisman watch list. Here's one for you to look at. (From Yahoo)

5- Geno Smith-West Virginia

4-Landry Jones -Oklahoma

3-Denard Robinson -Michigan

2-Montee Ball -Wisconsin

1-Matt Barkley -USC


Now this is the current list. Why do we waste our time with this every single year? (From ESPN)

5-Braxton Miller -Ohio State

4-Manti Te'o -Notre Dame

3-Kenjon Barner - Oregon

2-Johnny Manziel -Texas A&M

1-Collin Klein -Kansas State



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  • turkeydance Nov 18, 2012

    concerning NASCAR:
    maybe they're on the right track by 'at least starting to' template the 2013 Sprint Cup cars to 'look like' real, actual stock cars. way back in the day, it was NOT the
    driver, it WAS the car that fans liked. only AFTER the car performed with the
    SAME driver, did the drivers start getting more attention. you might want to
    compare it to college football: most watch their team, not a particular player.

  • VT1994Hokie Nov 18, 2012

    I have stated since he got the Tenn job that he didn't deserve it. Losing like he did at L Tech doesn't cut it. Huge politics got him this job. It's pretty simple really. The name Dooley is still strong in football. (Or was strong) It will be a long time before he get's another shot at head coaching.

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