John Clay

John Clay: West Virginia fumbling in passing the baton

Random notes:

■ You have to admit that the Joker Phillips coach-in-waiting succession of Rich Brooks proceeded much more smoothly than the current mess at West Virginia.

Dana Holgorsen is named as the coach-in-waiting to replace Bill Stewart. Then Holgorsen makes a scene at a casino. Stewart allegedly called up a sportswriter and asked him to dig up dirt on his successor.

Mike Leach, Holgorsen's former boss, calls West Virginia a bunch of "hillbillies."

No wonder West Virginia recently approved beer sales at its athletic events.

■ When a great rock band or artist puts out a few bad CDs/albums in a row, you figure they'll never get it back. I'm thinking the same thing about the rock star that was Tiger Woods.

■ How can LeBron James be the best player in the history of basketball when he is not the best player on his team?

■ The NBA Finals have been competitive, yes. Artistic? No.

Dallas could not buy a basket in the final minutes against Miami on Tuesday night and the Mavs won anyway. I do admit the final minutes were compelling.

■ I know LeBron said he was taking his talents to South Beach, but he and his teammates seem ready for Hollywood with all that flopping and flailing trying to pick up fouls. What is this, the World Cup?

■ SEC Commissioner Mike Slive suffered a bit of a brain cramp at the Spring Meetings when, in defense of the league nixing the post-graduate exception, said conference schools were not in favor of players spending one year in college and then moving on.

Tell that to John Wall. And DeMarcus Cousins. And Eric Bledsoe. And Tobias Harris.

■ Wonder what Slive thinks of Louisville basketball signing so many players that it is shifting Elisha Justice, Kyle Kuric and Chris Smith back to walk-on status next season?

■ Not a single player from Kentucky made ESPNU's Top 150 Class of 2012 list for football.

■ Just think how good Terrelle Pryor could have been if he spent as much time on the football field as he did driving new cars and allegedly signing memorabilia.

■ Behind every successful college quarterback (Colt McCoy) is a wife saying on national radio that his teammates were receiving improper benefits.

■ I remember something about the Reds signing a Cuban defector who could throw a baseball 106 miles per hour. Whatever happened to that guy?

■ Maybe Bronson Arroyo needs to cut his hair. Worked for Edinson Volquez on Tuesday.

■ After drafting a high school pitcher in the first round, the Reds' next nine draft picks were college players.

■ Not buying speculation Mitch Barnhart would defect to Tennessee. Yes, Barnhart spent a dozen years in Knoxville as an assistant A.D. And yes, he will be working for a new president at Kentucky.

But I still think that when Barnhart leaves this job it will be for something outside of sports.

■ Speaking of Barnhart, possibly his best UK hire, John Cohen, has Mississippi State in the NCAA Tournament's Super Regional this weekend against Florida.

■ Not fun fact: Betting on Thoroughbred racing fell for the 18th consecutive month in May.

■ Did you see where Sporting News tabbed LSU as the No. 1 team in college football for the upcoming season? And that's with Steve Kragthorpe as the Tigers' offensive coordinator.

■ Not buying that John Calipari to the Knicks stuff, either.

■ The real Billy Gillispie now has 1,846 followers on Twitter since he started his feed last week. At this rate, Texas Tech's new coach should catch Calipari in followers in about ... OK, he won't.