Posts Tagged ‘Football’

A Changing of the Guard…

As I mentioned the other day, any of you that have regularly read Gate 21 have probably notice the deafening sound of the silence here for the past month or so.  That silence was prelude to this post.  There is no better way to say it than to quote the words of the legendary John Ward:

It’s Time…

I started Gate 21 in 2007 not really knowing what I was getting myself into.  I really had no concept of what it was that I wanted to do with the site or, in fact, how I would do it.  I just decided one day that I could write a blog as well as the next guy and within 10 minutes, the original version of Gate 21 was live for all to see over at WordPress.com.  Within 2 months, I had over 10,000 visitors and had taken the site to a privately hosted (i.e. I had to pay for it) server and debuted the cartoonish looking site that hung around until mid-2009 when I overhauled the site once again.  You are looking at that version now.

Since that less-than-auspicious beginning in 2007 I have spent literally thousands of hours writing, designing, re-vamping, updating, and otherwise working on producing and publishing Gate 21.  Along the way I have had had the help of many, many, people.  These would include writers HomeSweetHome and VolAmbassador, who have both made major contributions to the site over the past several years.  Then there were others across the blogosphere who have both assisted and collaborated with me on articles, memes, roundtables, Power Polls, BlogPolls, and running jokes.  These would include folks like Ghost of Neyland, MoonDog, LSUFreek, Will, Hooper, and of course—the best of the best—Joel at Rocky Top Talk.  These are but a few of the many with whom I have interacted and with which I have had the pleasure to become acquainted.

Then there are those of you out there across the blogosphere and the wider arc of the internet that have visited my humble site and read a bit of what I had to say.  There are even those of you who have taken the time to leave a comment here and there.  To each and every one of you I offer my sincerest gratitude for more than 2 years of interaction across the divide that is the internet.  I have not always been right about things, I have not always been seriousI have not always been couth, but I have always tried to be honest about my views and perspectives on the world around me and my love for the Tennessee Volunteers.  All I can say is that these last 2 1/2 years have truly been a pleasure.

All things, however, must come to an end…

Thus, while it pains me on many levels, this will likely be the last post on Gate 21, at least for the foreseeable future.  And, now it is time for the Gate to close.

The thousands of hours that I have spent on this site have been a labor of love, as blogging always is.  While I may have advertisements here on the Gate, the fact of the matter is that I have lost money on this endeavour from the outset.  The cost of hosting the site alone has been substantial.  Yet, this exploration of “Life, the Universe, and the Bounce of the Ball” (Thank you Douglas Adams) has been a welcome and wonderful creative outlet for me, and one which has been far more “therapeutic” than I ever imagined.  And to those of you who have visited and taken the time to comment all I will say is that you never know just how much a single sentence left in the comment box or via Twitter really means to folks like myself who are blogging their lives away.

There’s really nothing that makes a writer feel better than knowing what they wrote was interesting enough that someone felt compelled to respond…

Now, however, the demands of my “real” life are such that I simply cannot maintain the Gate in the way that I have in the past.  It is hard enough to run a site with substantial help and a bevy of free time.  It is next to impossible to do that alone while trying to maintain a job, a family, and some semblance of sanity.  As I have said before, the informational cycle on the blogosphere lasts approximately as long as the attention span of a hyperactive 4-year-old who just ate 5 bags of Skittles and washed them down with three cans of Red Bull, and I simply cannot keep up with that.  My lack of timely comment over the past football season stands as a testament to that reality and one which I simply can no longer ignore.

I know, Frank, shocking isn't it?

These sorts of conclusions are not always fun, but they are necessary.  I think Lieutenant Frank Drebin probably said it best:

A Spoonful of Drano sound bite

Okay, enough of the depressing stuff, now for the good news…

For those of you who have enjoyed my writing—though I am certain there aren’t that many of you—take heart!  I am not abandoning my devotion to Tennessee athletics only to go gentle into that good night.  While I may not be able to justify continuing on here at the Gate, I fully intend to continue writing about the Vols.  Why?  Because, in the words of Clay Travis, I simply cannot imagine not doing it.

VolNation Thus, it is my distinct pleasure and honor to announce that, effective immediately, I will be joining on as a writer for the VolNation Blog.  Thus, any of you who wish continue to read my mindless prattling, I’ll still be around.  I cannot overstate how lucky I feel at having the chance to jump on board at VolNation, and I hope to see some of you over there in the near future.  While my time at Gate 21 is now at an end, I am extremely excited about what the future holds in store for me at VolNation.

In the meantime, the Gate will not be disappearing (though, after the next few days, I really won’t be monitoring comments any longer).  It will still be here and you will still be able to send me hate mail via the contact form here on the site, at the email address listed in the sidebar and on the Ushers page, or via Twitter.  For those of you who have subscribed to the RSS feed here at the Gate, you can now follow me via the feed at the VolNation Blog.  The Gate will now take its place among the so-called “dotsam and netsam” that floats across the web.  Everything will stay right where it is—most notably, my tribute to Sam and Andy’s.

As for me, I am on to a new home on the web and new challenges.

So, for the last time, I bid you farewell from Gate 21.  To each of you out there with whom I’ve come in contact as a result of my time publishing Gate 21 over the past 2 1/2 years, I say thank you for reading, best wishes, and Godspeed.  Now, more than ever, I suppose my signature “tagline seems appropriate.  Thus, I will end this final post as I have ended those that came before it.

Until we meet again … Go Vols!

– So it goes …Email lawvol No McAlisters

Changes Afoot

For those of you who are regular readers around here, you have doubtless noticed that it’s been pretty quiet around here at Gate 21 lately.  The phrase “brisk as the tomb” comes to mind.  Part of that owes to the ebbs and flows of life in the 21st century, part from my laziness, and part from the fact that changes are afoot here at Gate 21, well at least in a manner of speaking.

All I can tell you at the moment is:

  1. No, I am not dead;
  2. No, I have not given up on the Vols in the wake of Lane Kiffin’s departure; and
  3. Once again, there are about to be a bunch of changes here at the Gate—big changes—which I hope will be for the best.

At present, all I can tell you is that things are afoot and that I should have a big announcement later in the week or early next week.  Until then, it’s going to be a bit quiet around here.

For now, however, here is a little YouTubification of the Vols Winter workouts, courtesy of UTSports.com.

Video: Tennessee Football Winter Workouts: Day 1

bullet HT / via: UTSports.com

In the meantime, thanks for understanding…

– So it goes …Email lawvol No McAlisters

HLL: Mike Hamilton Press Conference at 1:00

Headlines, Links & Lies | Gate 21
In case you didn’t know, Smiling Mike Hamilton will be holding a press conference at 1:00 regarding the departure of Lane Kiffin and what the future holds for the Tennessee Volunteers football program.

Streaming video of the news conference will be available via UT Sports, and streaming audio will be available via The Sports Animal.

I am sure all eyes will be on Hamilton and listening to what he has to say. I know I will…

…and if he values his job, I hope he looks mad.

Not sure what to say yet…

Yesterday evening as I was reading about Pete Carroll’s departure from USC, I thought to myself, “gee, I hope they don’t come after Kiffin.” I dismissed this, however, due to the fact that it just didn’t make sense to me that something like that would happen.

Well, apparently it made sense to USC…

Like me, ESPN’s Pat Forde is a bit shocked, and isn’t quite sure how this is going to work out for any of the parties involved.

I suppose that is what I get for spending the evening falling asleep on the couch watching Dirty Jobs with Mike Rowe

I feel like I should say something on the departure of Lane Kiffin, but at this point it almost seems premature.  Obviously, this is going to have a hugely negative impact on not only short-term but perhaps the long-term health of the Tennessee football program.  Beyond that, however, I am really not sure what to think yet and the last thing I want to do is to rush to judgment.  Contemplative and plodding—that’s always been my mantra.

Basilio ”>Tony Basilio, however, already has his thoughts up for all to read, with which I don’t necessarily disagree.  The students on campus have also spoken—via the Rock (**NSFW: Language).  Of course, I can hardly blame them.  Tony Barnhart, on the other hand, is just sad—for Tennessee and for the game of college football.

In the meantime, (and in an attempt to be positive) I suppose I would be remiss if I did not take a brief moment to welcome and send best wishes to the 22nd Head Football Coach at Tennessee, Interim Head Coach Kippy Brown.  I’m not sure this is what he signed on for, but I do wish him all the best and look forward to hearing from him in the coming weeks.

Coach Brown, we’re all behind you and the team…

In the meantime, I have a feeling that Smiling Mike Hamilton is doing anything but smiling right now, and I expect that we will be hearing from him, and that right soon.

More to come…

– So it goes …Email lawvol No McAlisters


Image(s) Courtesy of:   UT Sports.com ||  Statement on Fair Use

HLL: CFB Coaches 2009-10: In Memoriam

Headlines, Links & Lies | Gate 21

A solemn remembrance of the coaches that are no longer with us after the 2009 football season from the inimitable LSUFreek.

Video: CFB Coaches 2009-10: In Memoriam

Ashes to ashes…

Tis only proper that we reflect on those gone by…

2009 SEC Football Power Poll: All-SEC Team: Defensive Backs

2009 SEC Power Poll

All-SEC Team: Defensive Backs

Check out the Complete All-SEC Team at Team Speed Kills!

Well, due to a complete lack of judgment on the part of the SEC Power Poll brain-trust, Gate 21 has been selected to announce the Power Poll All-SEC Team selections at defensive back.   The following positions for the 2009 All-SEC team have already been announced:

The rest of the positions are being announced today and tomorrow across the blogosphere.  In case you miss one, be sure to check in for the most up-to-date announcements over at Team Speed Kills.

The envelope, please…

The 2009 SEC Power Poll All-SEC Selections at Defensive Back are (in order of votes received): Eric Berry (Tennessee), Joe Haden (Florida), Javier Arenas (Alabama) and Mark Barron (Alabama). The reasons behind these should be obvious, but in case they aren’t here’s why these fine athletes are the cream of the crop:

Read the rest of this entry

SEC Power Poll: 2009 All-SEC Football Selections Ballot

Get more information on the SEC Power Poll at Team Speed Kills!

2009 All-SEC Football Selections

Well, I have been really lousy job lately at posting.  This has been due to a variety of things, none of which are of any importance to those of you out there in web-land who actually take the time to read the drivel that I produce.  Be that as it may, the brain-trust of the SEC Power Poll have joined together to, yet again, collectively select an All-SEC Football team for 2009.  Here is my ballot in all of its radiant glory:

Read the rest of this entry

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