Georgia’s Smart when it comes to math

Kirby Smart

It was far from a top ring-rope slam, but Georgia’s Kirby Smart couldn’t help himself when he heard a reporter tell him he had 21 starters returning.

“21 starters? Wow. That’s a new one for me,” Smart said. “I can’t figure that out. I think we had three senior  offensive lineman last year, so that math doesn’t work there.”

It’s times like this you miss Steve Spurrier.

“We had one coach that told us we had better talent,” Smart continued. “Then he had six guys taken in the first four rounds (of the NFL Draft) and we had one player drafted.”

The shot was intended for Butch Jones, the reporter was just in the way.

Though not mentioned by name, the SB Nation blog Rocky Top Talk was the first to make the connection. The blog pointed out that Jones always has his positive stats ready and this was one of his talking points Monday.

It’s fun to see shots like this, but one has to hope this won’t be as good as it gets.

Gambling fans

Are states moving to closer to legal sports betting? Maybe.

The Supreme Court decided last month that it will take up New Jersey’s challenge to a federal law that bans most states from legal sports betting. If New Jersey wins, analysts say it could open the door to legal betting in other states.

The court will hear the case during its next term, which begins in October. A decision should come by spring 2018.

New Jersey wants is trying to overturn the 1992 Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, which banned sports gambling in all but four states.

The state has twice passed laws attempting to legalize sports betting, but those efforts have been turned back in federal court multiple times. The latest defeat came in the US Third Circuit Court of Appeals in front of an en banc panel of judges in August.

If the Supreme Court rules in favor of New Jersey, it would open the door for any state to regulate sports betting. Mississippi, Connecticut and Pennsylvania are among the states preparing to legalize sports gambling.

Mississippi gamblers

In Mississippi, the Legislature paved the way for sports betting in Mississippi casinos with House Bill 967. The bill legalized sports fantasy betting in the state but also included language that would legalize sports betting in Mississippi casinos if the federal ban is lifted, according to columnist Rick Cleveland.

One state representative quoted in the story saw this as a way “to help fund education and roads and bridges and to help improve healthcare.”

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