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Rocky Top Talking Points: Christmas, PSU, and Memphis gang-banger edition

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  • No, we haven't forgotten about the blogger awards. Hope to have the name and the categories finalized tonight or tomorrow night, once everyone's mostly purged the BCS animosity from their system and I'm free of the pseudoephedrine.
  • There's a new Volunteer Gift Guide over on the left sidebar. If you're looking for gifts for another Vol fan, or if somebody's asking you what you want for Christmas, birthday, or whatever, and you don't know what to tell them, send them to Rocky Top Talk Mercantile or point them to one of the DVDs or the Football Fanatics shop. Wow, my comp professor would have hated that sentence. Anyway, the Mercantile and the Football Fanatics are affiliate links, just so you know. The DVD section is not. At the very least, it should give you some ideas.
  • Check out Go PSF and its Game Story section for official Penn State news and highlights. Hat tip to Black Shoe Diaries, which you also need to be reading daily as Tennessee prepares for Penn State and the Outback Bowl, for the link. By the way, 8th Maxim is all over the numbers in the Tennessee-PSU matchup.
  • Time capsule: Honk if you're glad to be talking about Penn State and the Outback Bowl this year.  Last year at this time, coach Fulmer was explaining that the losing season was due to over-optimism and a lack of emphasis on the details, and was looking at the correlation between pre-season expectations and actual performance.
  • More accolades for Tennessee players Arron Sears, Robert Meachem, James Wilhoit, Britton Colquitt, Jonathan Hefney, and Jonathan Wade, who were all named to the coaches All-SEC squad. Sears, Meachem, Wilhoit, and Colquitt are all first-teamers, and the Jonathans are second-teamers. Again, Ainge in Orange is missing. Last year, Arron Sears was the only Volunteer to make the All-SEC first team. Jason Hall, Parys Haralson, Justin Harrell, and Kevin Simon made second-team last year.
  • The basketball Vols take on the 16th-ranked Memphis Tigers tonight in Thompson-Boling Arena in front of a national t.v. audience. A couple of game points:

    • According to coach Pearl, "There is no program in the country that respects us less than Memphis." Memphis coach John Calipari doesn't even think we're worth playing.  In all fairness, Pearl said that we haven't done enough to earn Memphis' respect, but you gotta bet that he's fired up for this one.

    • Dane Bradshaw will also be fired up for this game as it will be his final game against his hometown team.  He had 21 points and 10 rebounds last year as well as some attention for his "gang-bangers" comment.

    • Wayne Chism will be reunited with former high school teammate Willie Kemp, who is now a guard for Memphis.

  • This isn't Vol-related, but it's definitely worth seeing:

    HT: TrojanWire.