Today in the World of Sports…
On Friday, the Jacksonville Jaguars won the coin flip against the Denver Broncos to acquire the tenth overall pick in the 2010 NFL Draft. I would have found it entertaining if Aaron Eckhart, who plays Two-Face in the 2008 film The Dark Knight, had flipped the coin. Throughout Batman, Two-Face is well-known for making decisions by the flip of a coin.
The Jaguars currently have five first-round picks on their roster that they've drafted. Those players are John Henderson, Marcedes Lewis, Reggie Nelson, Derrick Harvey and Eugene Monroe. Since the Houston Texans began as a franchise in 2002, they still possess six out of the eight first-rounders they have chosen – Travis Johnson and David Carr are no longer with the Texans. The Indianapolis Colts, from 1998 when Peyton Manning was drafted, presently have seven former first-round picks. Also, it must be noted that, in those 12 years, the Colts did not select anyone in the first round of the 2004 and 2008 drafts. The Tennessee Titans have five first-rounders on their roster. Four of them have been drafted in the last four years – Kenny Britt, Chris Johnson, Michael Griffin and Vince Young. The most important fact to gather from all this is that the Colts’ seven first-round picks including Manning – still on the roster – have a combined 26 Pro Bowl selections. With the Jaguars’ five first-rounders, they have a collective two Pro Bowls – both by Henderson in 2004 and 2006. Value has to be obtained out of first-round draft picks. And, over the years, the Colts have consistently done such.
In an interview with jaguars.com, Jacksonville’s Director of Player Personnel Terry McDonough stated that his sleeper in this year’s draft is All-American Austen Lane. The Murray State defensive end is expected to be drafted in either the second or third round. Lane is 6-foot-6 and known for his bull-rushing technique. In 32 games as a Racer, Lane registered 20 sacks and 41 tackles for loss. The Jaguars will have at least one eye on this coveted pass rusher.
As of Sunday afternoon, the Facebook group “Touchdown Jacksonville – Revive the Pride!” has 6,317 fans. With the help of Revive the Pride and social networking tools, the Jaguars have had 3,603 new ticket sales. Since the 2009 regular season ended, 7,503 tickets have been renewed – a 27 percent renewal rate. But, the key number for 2010 is still 50,957, the number of tickets that need to be sold to avoid blackouts. Currently, 39,851 tickets are waiting to be either renewed or sold to avoid 2010 blackouts. The Jaguars’ NFL Draft selections will play a major role in whether fans choose to own season tickets.
If I were quarterback Tim Tebow, I would wait to release my new delivery style to the world. While the NFL Scouting Combine is confirming the athletes’ talents, it is mainly about the interview process. So, Tebow’s decision to delay his throws to his Pro Day on March 17 in Gainesville should be respected. To quote a media colleague, Tebow’s workout will be “etched in stone for eternity.” At the Scouting Combine, Tebow impressively tied the record for quarterbacks with a 38-inch vertical leap. Former Virginia Tech Hokie Michael Vick had stood alone in this feat. The slimmed-down Tebow also demonstrated his athleticism with a 4.72 in the 40-yard dash and a 9-foot, 7-inch mark in the broad jump.
With the JU Dolphins’ loss Saturday night to East Tennessee State, 64-62, and Lipscomb defeating Mercer, 85-73, later in the evening, Lipscomb earned the No. 1 seed in the Atlantic Sun Tournament, which begins Wednesday in Macon, Georgia. JU and Lipscomb shared the A-Sun regular-season title. The No. 2-seeded Dolphins will play the No. 7 UNF Ospreys Wednesday night at 9 p.m. The game, which will be the third meeting between the two this season, can be heard on AM 1320 WBOB. Jacksonville has won both matchups this year – 62-56 on January 18 and 73-61 on January 29.
On men’s hockey, do not tell me Team USA was the home squad during Sunday’s 3-2 overtime loss to Canada in the gold-medal final. It’s like saying an alligator has home-field advantage in a tree with a black bear.
If the Jaguars had lost the coin flip on Friday, do you think some fans would have decided to not renew their season tickets?
Richard Miller is a national broadcaster for Jacksonville Jaguars’ home games on Sporting News Radio. Additionally, he can be heard on ABC 1320 WBOB in Jacksonville at 5:45 p.m. on Wednesdays with The Jacksonville Observer Radio Show.
Richard contributes to Inside the Game with Robin Valetutto every Saturday from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. Currently, he is writing David Lamm’s biography entitled Lamm at Large: The David Lamm Story, which will be available in 2010.
Follow Richard’s daily blog on The Jacksonville Observer or e-mail Richard at Richard.Miller@jaxobserver.com.