THE CURIOUS INDEX, 2/23/2010

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TWENTY BUCKS SAYS HE GOES TO ORLANDO BY MISTAKE. Recapping a "frenzied" first month with the South Florida Bulls, Skip Holtz is promising he'll bring his dad in to "take notes" and "critique" the team's practices. We'd advise the Bulls' equipment manager to invest heavily in these for players and assistant coaches alike, but as long as Lou doesn't bring Mark May with him, USF is getting off easy.

LANE KIFFIN REFERRED TO THE VIOLATIONS AS "BABYTOWN FROLICS." Clemson self-reported a grand total of 17 NCAA secondary violations shortly before quittin' time last Friday, ranging from over-long practices to "prospective student-athletes accepting small sums of prize money." If the NCAA's past record on such infractions is any indication, they will respond to these misdeeds by docking Furman five scholarships and putting them on probation for the next two seasons.

SUH TO MAKE A WHOLE NEW GROUP OF ELITE COLLEGE PLAYERS PEE THEIR PANTS. If you've seen the "hammer scene" from "Oldboy," you know pretty much everything you need to know about the way Ndamukong Suh singlehandedly mowed through opposing offenses for most of 2009. So it's not like he's got a whole lot left to prove, but ESPN's John Clayton says Suh may yet throw a new wrinkle into the 2010 draft by participating fully in next week's combine, thus putting pressure on every other player gunning to be the #1 pick to do the same. Clayton says "That could pressure [Oklahoma defensive tackle Gerald] McCoy and Tennessee safety Eric Berry to work out as well," which would be the second time in three months that Suh has made someone named McCoy fear for their continued earning ability. (Suh may be the hardest-working top-five draft prospect in recent memory, as he's already attended the training facility of Olympic track star Michael Johnson, which is sort of like strapping a pair of Pratt & Whitney turbofans to an M1 Abrams battle tank.)

TAKING "FEAR THE TURTLE" TO A WHOLE NEW LEVEL. The Maryland Gazette has an interesting bit of insight into the history of the Maryland-Navy rivalry, and if that's not a rivalry you're especially familiar with, it's probably because they didn't play it for 40 years. Here's why:

Maryland linebacker Jerry Fishman became infamous for getting penalized for late hits on [Roger] Staubach and Navy star receiver Skip Orr, then making an obscene gesture toward the Brigade of Midshipmen afterward. Fishman's unsportsmanlike actions prompted Navy officials to allow the series to lapse following the 1965 game and the two schools did not meet on the gridiron again for 40 years. Decades of animosity were finally put aside in 2005 and Maryland edged Navy 23-20 in a thrilling affair before a sellout crowd at M&T Bank Stadium to open the season. Prior to the long-awaited game, Friedgen got a call from Fishman, who offered to donate $50,000 to the Maryland football program if he were allowed to serve as an honorary team captain. "I told Jerry I appreciated the offer, but no way would I allow that," Friedgen related last night.

It takes a special kind of dastardliness to not only display such marginal sportsmanship against a service academy, but to throw oneself so wholeheartedly into the endeavor that it causes a series to be put on hiatus for four decades. No cocktails to you, Jerry Fishman, but if someone ever opens up a Brazen Sports Assholery Hall of Fame, you're going on our first ballot.

THIRD SEASON OF "MALLETT, P.I." EXPERIENCING PRODUCTION DIFFICULTIES. Bobby Petrino says Ryan Mallett was "lucky" to have broken his left foot when he did, as it will cause Mallett to miss spring practice but probably not much more. The most ominous part of Petrino's quote comes at the end, though, where he says "They say everything happens in threes," which can only be a cryptic indication that he's about to make his third straight unannounced departure for greener coaching pastures. (USA Curling. You heard it here first.)

EDSBS REMINDS YOU TO RECYCLE YOUR COKE BOTTLES. Joe Paterno's glasses went for a cool nine grand at a live auction in State College, or just $45 per pound. We congratulate the Coppola family on their new acquisition, which will probably enable them to read the Bible verses in their favorite PSU players' eye-black from the third deck at Beaver Stadium.

WORSE THAN "A THING," BUT NOT QUITE AS BAD AS "A PREDICAMENT." Alabama defensive back Robby Green has apparently committed a boo-boo serious enough to get mentioned on al.com's Crimson Tide blog, but Nick Saban will only refer to it as "a situation." Since that term could conceivably encompass anything from "missed practice" to "strangled a hooker," we will withhold judgment (and Fulmer Cup points) until further facts are known.

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