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Coming and Going in the SEC

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I'm getting the impression that my baby
Is moving down to L.A.
For the big lights, flashing and reflecting
In her big eyes
Ain't nothing here could make her stay.

 - The Thrillls, "Plans"

At home, turmoil rages: exodus, protests, reprisals, resignations. All while the catalyst, the siren, the most lucious apple over which hungry Arkansas eyes have lusted in years, enjoys the royal treatment across the country:

"Just from an aesthetic standpoint I love being here," said Mustain, who visited with Coach Pete Carroll and assistant head coach Steve Sarkisian after arriving on Wednesday. "The business part of it is football and they've got a proven history with Coach Sarkisian developing quarterbacks -- even their backups are successful.

"I think it says a lot about what they have here and the system they have."

First, isn't Mustain still enrolled at Arkansas? Which makes this trip for an "extracurricular" pretty blatant hookey. Second (back on planet Earth) Mustain would be the fourth USA Today high school Player of the Year in as many seasons to join the Trojans, following Jeff Byers (2004), Matt Sanchez (2005) and Joe McKnight. (2007). Of that group, only Sanchez, from Mission Viejo, is a Californian, and he's currently backing up a Louisianan who left high school as the top-ranked quarterback prospect in the country and made his name in his first season as a starter by throwing to a future first-rounder from New Jersey. And why shouldn't the Trojans get more or less who they want nationally, when football at USC gives young men not only the opportunity to earn a degree from a respected insitution, win championships and hobnob with Hollywood starlets - SMQ assumes this was what young Mitch meant when he praised the "aesthetic standpoint" of being wooed in SoCal - but also to tap into that often supressed dream of earning acclaim as an artlete? It's sweet to be in demand.

But...Tulsa, Mitchy! I thought we agreed the dream was in Tulsa!
- - -

The SEC's presumed loss via transfer in Arkansas, though, is offset by its potential gain elsewhere, according to reports this week that Tennessee native Brandon Warren, maybe the brightest spot in Florida State's dismal offense last year as a true freshman, has left FSU with intentions of enrolling at Tennessee to be near his ill mother. The Tennesseean cites "sources close to the situation" in reporting Warren will apply for a hardship to waive the mandatory redshirt year, but can't be on scholarship otherwise unless Florida State lets him out of his letter of intent (because Warren didn't fulfill his one-year obligation). The Tallahassee-Democrat wrote Tuesday that the university's likelihood of granting such a waiver was "questionable."