Paul Finebaum talks with Rory Karpf, director of ‘The Book of Manning’ about the making of the film and what he learned.
Paul Finebaum, ESPN’s Trevor Matich and Gregg Easterbrook (Author, ‘The King of Sports’) chat about football’s impact on America and Week 5 of College Football schedule.
By Finebaum Fan.
ESPN radio host, Paul Finebaum, joined Canadian rapper, Drake, on ESPN’s SportCenter earlier today.
The two brought to mind the 1933 science fiction movie, “When Worlds Collide“. Apparently, public perception of the two places them at opposite extremes of the spectrum.
Twitter exploded with comments related to that interview. Here is some of that reaction.
Paul Finebaum just interviewed Drake on SportsCenter. [blank stare]
— Awful Announcing (@awfulannouncing) September 24, 2013
Finebaum is talking to Drake on SportsCenter. Nothing is real.
— Lana Berry (@Lana) September 24, 2013
Over the course of the last six months or so, Johnny Manziel and Drake have become best buds. Okay, maybe not best buds. But they’ve clearly become pretty good friends. In fact, back in April, Johnny Football credited Drake with helping him become a changed man during the college football offseason. He took a trip to Toronto to hang out with Drake and seemed genuinely touched by the way the rapper treated him during his visit.
“To meet the No. 1 person on my bucket list, and for him to treat me like he did and how that whole trip went for me,” Manziel said, “I came back a completely different person.”
During an appearance on ESPN First Take earlier today, Drake spoke about his friendship with Manziel and defended his recent actions both on and off the football field. He also talked about what he has been talking to Manziel about in order to try and turn him into a better football player.
This just in, Ole Miss’s second-year head coach Hugh Freeze is more than just “that guy who was Michael Oher’s high school coach in The Blind Side.” Freeze has the potential to make his part in the Oher story nothing more than the magical beginning of a storied career in the coaching. So, what’s so special about Freeze, and how did he manage to rise from a high school coach to the head of an SEC program in less than 10 years?
Freeze’s start in coaching came by means of a B.S. in Math with a minor in Coaching and Sports Administration from Southern Miss in 1992. Wasting no time in putting his degree to work, after graduation Freeze became the offensive coordinator and defensive backs coach at Briarcrest high school in Memphis, Tenn. After serving in that capacity for three seasons, Freeze was promoted to head coach in 1995.
Not only did Freeze’s path prophetically collide with Oher’s during his nine years as the head coach at Briarcrest, he also led the school to state titles in 2002 and 2004. Freeze followed Oher to Ole Miss in 2005 but initially not to the football field. Freeze’s first post in the college ranks was as Assistant Athletics Director for External Affairs. This led to coach Ed Orgeron hiring him as tight ends coach and recruiting coordinator, roles he served in from 2006 to 2007. Freeze’s efforts led to Ole Miss signing—according to Rivals—the No. 15 ranked recruiting class in 2006, the highest in school history at that time.
Freeze moved on to coach NAIA Lambuth (located in Jackson, Tenn.) in 2008 and 2009. He took a program that had only scored double-digit wins twice in history to a 12-1 finish in 2009.
After a brief stay at San Jose State as offensive coordinator, Freeze landed the OC job at Arkansas State. In a single season he improved the Red Wolves offense from a No. 90 ranking in scoring a No. 42 rank.
Freeze was promoted to head coach at Arkansas State in 2011, where the offense improved further to a No. 31 ranking and the program to a 10-3 record. This marked the best finish since 1986 (when it was a D I-AA school) and the first Sun Belt title since 2005.
Freeze was named the head coach at Ole Miss in December of 2011 and led the Rebels to a 7-6 finish in his first season. In what has become a pattern for Freeze, Ole Miss improved its scoring offense from a No. 116 ranking in 2011 to a No. 44 rank in 2012. He also managed to take a program that brought in—according to Rivals— the No. 40 ranked recruiting class in 2012 to the heights of a No. 7 ranked class in 2013.
What’s So Great About Freeze?
Well, if you like the underdog, Freeze is your guy in a wonderful combination of ways.
First, Freeze didn’t play college football and next, he’s someone who has spent more than half of his coaching career in the high school ranks.
No, this is not a coach that has “crème de la crème” and “prodigy” stamped on his resume.
His role at Ole Miss only serves to enhance this “little guy” mentality. The Rebels—stationed in the powerful SEC West—aren’t perceived as having a realistic shot of knocking off Alabama and LSU, much less Texas A&M and Auburn.
Paul Finebaum chats with Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze and “Tuscaloosa News” writer Cecil Hurt about next weekend’s matchup between Ole Miss and Alabama.
Paul Finebaum chats with ESPN’s Travis Haney about whether Alabama and Ohio State should be nervous about their games next weekend.
Paul Finebaum and AP writer Ralph Russo look back at Week 4 of the college football season and break down the AP Top 25.
Paul Finebaum chats with ESPN Radio’s Freddie Coleman about the best games from Week 4 and the match ups to keep an eye on next week.
Paul Finebaum, Kirk Bohls and Cecil Hurt discuss Nick Saban’s denial of interest in the University of Texas headcoaching job.
Paul Finebaum, Andy Staples (Sports Illustrated) and Brad Edwards talk about Week 4 of the college football season.
Paul Finebaum shares his thoughts on Nick Saban’s future and Arian Foster’s admission that he accepted money while playing at University of Tennessee.
Paul Finebaum and College Football News’ Russ Mitchell preview the Week 4 SEC matchups.
Regent Wallace Hall of Dallas told the AP he spoke by telephone with agent Jimmy Sexton a few days after the Jan. 7 game. Tom Hicks, a former regent who is the brother of current Regent Steve Hicks, also was on the call. Tom Hicks, the former owner of the Texas Rangers, the Dallas Stars and the English professional soccer team Liverpool, was a regent in 1997 when Brown came to Texas and was instrumental in hiring him away from North Carolina.
Two days after the call with Sexton, Tom Hicks met with Brown over lunch and told him about the call, according to several people who spoke with the AP. He asked Brown if he was ready to retire.
Brown, who had just finished his 15th season at Texas, said he wanted to keep coaching and the matter was dropped.
Brown, who is under contract until 2020 and will be paid $5.4 million this year, won the 2005 national title and lost to Saban’s Alabama team in the 2010 championship game. The Longhorns are 23-18 since that defeat and Brown is under fire from fans upset about a 1-2 start this year after consecutive lopsided losses to BYU and Mississippi.
“Darriel From Columbus” called Paul Finebaum today on ESPN Radio to complain about Finebaum’s program content. It seems Darriel believes the show has too many interviews and not enough callers.
The Finebaum show is known for its cast of colorful callers. According to New Yorker Magazine, “It’s basically an entertaining bar conversation with people that you’d never want to drink a beer with.”
Listen to the call again – it’s bound to become another Finebaum caller classic!