Howell lauds SEC

Published 3:15 pm Tuesday, October 13, 2009

SELMA — Fans of Southeastern Conference football teams ought to be pretty pleased right now, former football coach Max Howell told the Selma Quarterback Club on Monday.

“The SEC has the most dominate league in the country,” Howell said. “And I couldn’t be more happy.”

The club, which is heavily filled with Auburn and Alabama football fans, should be proud of what the SEC has done, said Howell, who now lives in Tupelo, Miss.

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“Do you realize that every SEC team was on television this past weekend?” Howell asked. “And it’s all because of clubs like this that make this happen.”

Now, he said, comes another dilemma, especially after the past weekend’s contests.

“The big question is who’s No. 3 in the SEC,” said Howell, who listed Florida and Alabama as the league’s top teams.

He also said the parity in most teams has been countered by the difference in coaching.

“Everybody is going to have a few good players,” he said. “Whoever has them prepared to play on Saturday is going to make the difference.”

Other items he touched on included Heisman Trophy voting, Alabama’s Trent Richardson and Florida State coach Bobby Bowden.

“I think the Heisman Trophy voting should be changed until after all the bowl games are played,” he said.

Howell predicted Richardson will come out for the NFL Draft after three years in college. And he expects Bowden to retire at the end of the season, especially after the school hears from the NCAA about 14 games in question.

He also said assistant coaches are the ones looking for the higher paychecks these days.

“With the older coaches, there’s a lot to be said about the legacy you leave,” Howell said. “With the younger guys, it’s all about the money.”

Howell said few changes will be made in the rules, even in the area of the celebration infraction.

“The rules committee will do very little to make any changes that may affect the outcome of a game,” he said.

He said he believed former Auburn and Ole Miss coach Tommy Tuberville — a native of Camden — will return to coaching. However, he said, “I’d have a hard time coaching today.”

The next Selma Quarterback Club meeting will be at 6 p.m. Monday with Hank Nichols, the retired NCAA overseer of men’s basketball officials.