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The Ladies of Auburn Make a Surprisingly Tasteful Radio Spot. Two wives of fired Auburn assistants called into local radio stations and made surprisingly tasteful commentary on the firing. Emotional, yes, but none of them broke down and began calling Bobby Lowder a pigfucker, which is precisely what we would have done in the same situation. You will be shocked to know that the announcement of the hiring filtered out through boosters, seemed extremely disorganized, and caught Auburn offensive coordinator Steve Emsminger in Miami on a recruiting trip. Other Auburn assistants were caught mid-visit, as well.

"Kid, I've just been fired. I suggest you go wherever the hell you like, actually. Disregard the previous 30 minutes of schpiel. What's you mom doing tonight? She's in great shape for a woman her age. Hey, is that scotch in the cabinet over there? You ever been to a dog track? Really?"

Further confirmation that Auburn is a Banana Republic. The dysfunctional, oligarchical kind where coups happen in sloppy, uncontrolled fashion, not the mall-based purveyor of fine Garanimals for fashion-hapless adults. (Raises hand.) Joe Schad says a trustee reached out to Mike Leach last night:

A pirate has no problem taking the wheel of a ship still bearing the clenched and severed hand of its previous captain, but still....yeeeesh. More flash reaction here. As for Leach, his agent says he's heard nothing from his current employer, so it's game on for negotiating time.

The Animated Blogpoll thinks it's UNFAIR. Wait: you beat Cincinnati? Get another table in here so Bob Stoops can watch Bobby Vinton at the Copa with his lady. The Animated Blogpoll contains no Goodfellas references, but is certainly entertaining enough to please your inner mobster.

(This is a personality test: are you more of a Goodfellas mafia guy, or a Godfather type? Those who gravitate toward the Godfather seem fascinated by the bullshit omerta and honor code of the whole thing, the high drama and lush interiors; we're more of a Goodfellas partisan because it shows why you'd behave so badly in the first place. You get to shove postmen's heads into pizza ovens, pistol-whip country club assholes to a pulp in broad daylight, and give your wife shopping money measured out by inches, not amount. Blah blah politics family honor America whatevs. Give us Henry Hill doing blow and scanning the skies for helicopters any day.)

Sad. Ball State will not meet Boise in the Humanitarian Bowl for the Sensible Mid-Sized Hybrid Undefeated Program Bowl.

Painful, but true, sir. SI's Don Banks on Lane Kiffin's strengths:

"His strength right now is apparently, frankly, interviewing and getting jobs," said Don Banks, who covers the NFL for Sports Illustrated. "He does that very well."

NFL writer's sneering at the college game aside, Lane Kiffin is looking more and more like a very, very conservative person's notion of an innovative hire. "Does he come from good stock? Who's his father? Does he run in a good crowd? Does he use the salad fork correctly?" It's like hiring a kid straight out of Wharton because his pedigree is "impeccable." That's what Tennessee just did, and it is going to take a posse of old boys pitching in to make it work.