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Monday, August 16, 2010

Afternoon stuff

Today's the first day of classes at Georgia, which begs a question that's always bothered me: How come classes start earlier in the South? Growing up in the north (well, Maryland anyway) we always started school right after Labor Day, and wrapped up mid-June.

The high school football seasons also start later up north. It always would've made sense to me to flip it, because of the heat. Now I suppose for school reasons you're sort of trading one hot time for another - start earlier in the heat in the summer, but finish up earlier in the summer.

When it comes to football, however, the southern schools are practicing in the heat earlier, and playing in the heat earlier. And the northern schools are stretching their seasons longer, to when it gets much colder up there.

I suppose there's a real good reason out there that someone will enlighten me on. It's just always sort of confounded me.

Anyway ... First day of school, Georgia's practices are starting an hour later than the previous two weeks, blah blah blah ...

- Aron White has been named to the watch list for the Mackey Award, given to the nation’s top tight end.

Coincidentally, White is also on the watch list for the starting tight end job at Georgia.

White entered the fall behind Orson Charles on the depth chart list, though it’s understandable why the Mackey people would pick him out: White started 12 games last year and caught two touchdown passes in the Independence Bowl.

But Georgia’s tight ends depth chart is so deep – Charles was a freshman All-American, Arthur Lynch played in 11 games last year, and Bruce Figgins has started three times – that the Mackey people could probably just have put “TBA, Georgia” on the list.

- Ivan Maisel of does not include A.J. Green in a ranking of top 20 Heisman hopefuls. He quickly got asked about it on Twitter, and replied that he was "skittish" about the quarterback situation.

I probably would've put Green somewhere in there, but Maisel's right to hold back a bit. Plus, receivers don't often start the year out as Heisman favorites.

- Another entry, this time from newbie Andrea Adelson (recently hired from the Orlando Sentinel). Adelson asks who would you rather be this year, Mark Richt or Les Miles.

Ah, a hot seat question. From my vantage point, you'd probably rather be Richt. But that's just me.


Anonymous said...

Many years ago we started school after Labor Day in the South as well. Two things happened to change that gradually to where we now start before mid-August.
1.) Because of the lack of snow equipment, and the size of county school districts, educators close all schools when it snows even a little. It may be fine in most areas, but deemed too dangerous on some county roads. The decision that if only 1% of students cannot get to class, then all students got the day off led to building around 10 snow days into the schedule.
2.) Since the teachers became unionized, they build in several days for grading tets, teacher conferences, Fall and Spring Breaks,etc. which has also added about about two weeks to the school year.

The 180 day school year once ran from early September to late May, now it runs from August into June to accomplish the same thing. All during the supposed era of global warming. Aren't we brilliant?

SavDawg said...

It did snow a good bit last year during this Global Warming Crisis. I think that was blamed on Global Warming too.

Actually, they're trying to go to year-round schools, at least in the school districts, and it's easier if you're only used to an 8 week summer.

AthensHomerDawg said...

Sooooo Northern schools are contributing to global warming?

Anonymous said...

Andrea Adelson's the same staffer that had Georgia ranked 65th or so, right? And she's still covering college football? One would assume you'd have to actually have seen college football to cover it ...

Rob said...

It doesn't really have anything to do with snow days. In fact, if a school has fewer than three days missed due to snow (in Georgia), they aren't even required to make those days up later in the year.

According to my mother, who is the business manager of a county school system in Georgia, it's a few things. Research shows that kids do better in school when they have more holidays, so moving it up allowed them to have atleast a full week off after every nine-week grading period. Thus, there's fall break, christmas break, spring break, and then extended summer break. It's basically a move towards year-round schooling with more breaks during the year and a shorter summer. There is higher rate of retention of material and less burnout.

Another reason is that, in the case of her school system, they let the teachers vote on the calendar. The teachers naturally vote for the calendar with more holidays, even if it does mean an overall shorter summer.