Roy Exum: Pearl Alive, Bishop Dead

Sunday, March 16, 2014 - by Roy Exum
Roy Exum
Roy Exum

Bruce Pearl, the former Tennessee basketball coach who was famously fired for lying to NCAA investigators after the 2011 season, may soon be back in the game. Auburn coach Tony Barbee was fired on Wednesday night, mere minutes after his Tigers dropped a 74-56 opening-round loss to South Carolina in the SEC tournament, and by Saturday the rumors were rampant that the 53-year-old Pearl was a leading contender.

Pearl, who took the Vols to six NCAA tournaments and compiled a lofty 145-61 record at UT, has been an executive for the Knoxville-based H.T. Hackney since his fall from grace. Hackney is owned by UT mega-booster Bill Sansom and Pearl has also worked for ESPN this basketball season. And, while there is little doubt Pearl will return to coaching, he is still bound by a “show cause” penalty demanding any school that hires him must convince NCAA officials the validity in doing so.

Ironically, two of the NCAA’s investigators during the Pearl scandal now work for the Auburn athletic department and, if either Rich McGlynn or Dave Didion signed off on Pearl, the hiring should be a smooth one. McGlynn and Didion are associate athletic directors under Jay Jacobs, who will make the hire.

Some Tennessee fans petitioned for Pearl in place of Cuonzo Martin during the regular season but Martin’s Vols played well towards the end of the campaign. UT is expected to be in the NCAA field despite Saturday’s 56-49 loss to top-ranked Florida in the SEC semis. UT now has a 21-12 record.

Barbee compiled an 18-54 record against SEC opponents in the four years he coached at Auburn.

* * *

Details are still a bit hazy but it seems that last Sunday, minutes after the weekly services at the Miracle Faith World Outreach Church, Bishop Bobby Davis asked the Bridgeport, Conn., congregation for forgiveness for an act of infidelity that had occurred during his 50-year marriage to his wife Christine.

As people shouted, “We forgive you, we love you!” the minister, a certified marriage and family therapist, suffered a massive heart attack in the pulpit and was later pronounced dead.

* * *

Jason Greenslate, who was once caught by TV cameras using food stamps to buy lobster, was being interviewed by Fox News anchor Sean Hannity this week and the TV host confronted the 29-year-old about driving a Cadillac Escalade and visiting strip clubs while refusing to work for a living wage.

Greenslate was asked who pays for his government assistance and he told the TV host, “Government, taxes, us, the people.”

Hannity countered, “Not, you, because you aren’t paying taxes,” and pointed out 60 percent of every worker’s dollar in California goes to taxes. Greenslate, wearing sunglasses, a backwards ball cap, and smoking an electronic cigarette, appeared irked when Hannity said he didn’t seem to care where the money comes from. “Who says I don’t care … I want to thank the United States of America, and the situation – the way things are set up.”

The way Jason sees it, he “works” when he practices with the band but when Hannity asked him point blank: “If I could get you a job that would pay you $80,000 a year driving a truck in North Dakota, would you take it?” Greenslate answered an easy, “No.”

* * *

Lt. Col. Frank Dailey was eating an early lunch at a Cracker Barrel restaurant in Toledo one day last month when an 8-year-old boy approached and handed him a note: It read, “Dear soldier – my dad was a soldier. He’s in heaven now. I found this $20 dollars (wrapped in the note) in the parking lot when we got here. We like to play it forward in my family. It’s your lucky day! Thank you for your service. Myles Eckert, a gold star kid.”

Lt. Col. Dailey said he will never forget the incident and carries the note with him everywhere. He’s already given the $20 to a needy person and personally thanked Myles, who father was killed in Iraq five weeks after Myles was born.

* * *

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia was in Atlanta Friday, giving a speech on the Constitution, and told a huge crowd of lawyers: "The Constitution is not a living organism … it’s a legal document, and it says what it says and doesn't say what it doesn't say."

Yet it still provides for a flexible legal system, he claimed: "You want the death penalty? Persuade your fellow citizens it's a good idea and enact it. You think it's a bad idea? Persuade them the other way and repeal it. And you can change your mind. If you repeal it and find there are a lot more murders, you can put it back in," he argued. "That's flexibility."

royexum@aol.com



Worse And Worser

We hear a lot about voter apathy, citizens of this, the greatest nation to ever grace the face of Planet Terra, these United States of America, who fail to take advantage of their right, nay, accept their responsibility to participate in government of this great nation. How many of us know citizens who don't vote? Worse yet, how many of us know citizens who aren't even registered ... (click for more)

Howley Has New Ideas And New Energy For Signal Mountain

Over the last several years, I have had the opportunity to serve with Chris Howley on the Signal Mountain Recreation Advisory Board.  During this time, I obtained an insight into the qualities that make Chris Howley an outstanding candidate to serve on the Signal Mountain Town Council.Chris has spent countless hours on the board overseeing the numerous recreation leagues and ... (click for more)

Chickamauga Lock To Reopen As Soon As Next Thursday

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nashville District  plans to reopen Chickamauga Lock to all navigation traffic as early as next Thursday. An inspection of the upper gate anchorage and a repair plan were completed today. Chickamauga Lock closed on Monday after a routine inspection revealed a crack in the anchorage of the upper gate. Lt. Col. John Hudson, commander ... (click for more)

Downtown Chattanooga Apartment Complex That Brought $3 Million Profit Exempt From Most Taxes Until 2022 Under PILOT

A downtown Chattanooga apartment complex that recently was sold at a $3 million profit is exempt from most property taxes through 2022 under a PILOT (payment in lieu of taxes) agreement.   No payment of school taxes was included in the deal for Walnut Commons at Walnut Street and Aquarium Way.   The only taxes due on the property for the next eight ... (click for more)

GPS Advances To Division IIAA Soccer Championship

MURFREESBORO - GPS defeated Brentwood Academy 3-0 to advance to the finals of the TSSAA Division II-AA soccer tournament.   The Bruisers scored one first half goal in the 38th minute off the foot of senior Lindsay Rufolo.   Fourteen minutes into the second half Emily Large added the first of two insurance goals. Six minutes later at the 60-minute mark Catherine ... (click for more)

Hixson Clinches 6-AA Title With Shutout Over Brainerd

Just about any coach will tell you that winning ugly is always better than winning pretty. Such was the case at Hixson Community Stadium on a frigid Halloween night as the host Wildcats finished off their regular season with a 19-0 win over the Brainerd Panthers. Hixson improves to 8-2 overall and 6-0 in District 6-AA while Brainerd is now 3-7 overall and 3-3 in 6-AA. It ... (click for more)