Here's my story, just posted on Macon.com, detailing how far Mark Fox has come since the start of his coaching career: at Washington, the same school Georgia faces on Friday night.
ATHENS - Mark Fox still has a copy of the first paycheck he received from the University of Washington. The sentimental value far outweighs what it was monetarily.
“I think I earned about $8 a month after rent,” Fox said.
As they got on the bus for a three-hour drive to Charlotte, N.C., Fox took with him the memories of how far he’d come -- as well as what it has taken to get the Bulldogs to this point in just two years.
Fox pointed out later in the day, via Twitter on the way to Charlotte, that while his wife did grow up in Yakima, Wash., that she was actually born in Augusta. The people asking about that "fail to mention" that fact, Fox tweeted. Well, I never knew that until he tweeted it, but in any case, there you go, I just mentioned it.
By the way, if you check out this week's Sports Illustrated, Trey Thompkins is one of the more than 64 players, coaches, cheerleaders or mascots on the cover. Thompkins is at the very bottom, third from the left, and appears to be eating his shirt. I'm going to be sure to ask him about this in Charlotte.
- President Obama is getting a lot of criticism, even from the left, over picking chalk (all four No. 1 seeds) in his bracket. Well Georgia fans will also be interested to know that Obama picked against their team.
Here's a link to the video of Obama's session with Andy Katz. If you go to about the 2:15 mark, you can see in a close-up that the First Bracketologist has Washington penciled in.
MY TAKE: Hey, Washington voted for Obama, Georgia voted for McCain. Just sayin'.
- Finally, here's a story that will probably be dominant at the Charlotte regional, at least during Thursday's round of media sessions: Will the end of Tennessee's NCAA tournament run, whenever it happens, spell the end of head coach Bruce Pearl's run too?
That's the conclusion that could be divined by a strangely-timed interview Tennessee athletics director Mike Hamilton gave on Wednesday.
“We don’t know the answer today,” the AD said when asked if Pearl will return. “We’ve done a lot of soul searching about the direction of our program and we’ll continue to do that and we’ll decide after we’re out of the NCAA Tournament what direction it is that we’re going to go next.”
MY TAKE: ... Uh-oh. ... But as others have pointed out, shouldn't the A.D. who also hired Lane Kiffin be somewhat accountable in all of this too?