It seems as if a lifetime has passed, but in actuality it was a mere four months ago that the University of Tennessee tried to lure away the football coach to whom Tom Jurich gave his first head coaching job.
The anxiety and range of emotions experienced by Cardinal fans as we digested the rumors of planes en route from Knoxville or as we listened to our coach rather inelegantly attempt to drum up support for his team, were, if not forgotten, certainly alleviated with the beatdown that same team put on another "vaunted" SEC program in the Sugar Bowl.
One would certainly forgive Tom Jurich if he felt just a wee bit of animosity for his neighbors to the south. After all, Tennessee had their chance to gain the services of Charlie Strong, and perhaps the same loyalty we now seem to have earned, had they hired the promising Florida assistant coach years earlier.
In the days of coaches and players heaping praise on their opponents (see Rick Pitino), I was amused by the following comments from Jurich when addressing the defeat, by his Cardinal Women, of the University of Tennessee's most successful athletic program, the Lady Vols basketball team.
"Jeff didn't surprise Tennessee, he was the better team. I'll be perfectly honest with you, I was very shocked the game was eight points. I thought Jeff, a few breaks in the first half, would have been up by 25. He had more talent than they did and he's got three starters that didn't play this year. I thought the better team won last night."