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Jun / 2012

Published on June 16, 2012.

go tigers!

Clemson lands the #1 overall prospect for the Class of 2013!

From Rivals.com

Many who follow recruiting were shocked when prized defensive end Robert Nkemdiche of Loganville (Ga.) Grayson, the country's No. 1 overall prospect, committed to Clemson on Thursday.

Although Nkemdiche consistently listed the Tigers among his favorites, few ever seemed to give the Tigers much of a shot.

Alabama, long considered the leader, not only had tradition and a history of producing NFL talent on its side, but a Crimson Tide alum - Mickey Conn - coaching his team.

Ole Miss, where Nkemdiche's brother, Denzel, is a defensive back, also seemed like a possible destination. So did LSU, a school that Nkemdiche raved about at length after visiting earlier this year.

Recently, there also was chatter about Georgia, which hired Daryl Jones, a Grayson assistant during Nkemdiche's freshman year, as its Director of On-Campus Recruiting, and Mississippi State, which signed former Grayson quarterback Nick Schuessler, whom Nkemdiche has lived with, in February.

Meantime, Clemson got very little buzz.

That changed Wednesday night when defensive back David Kamara of Grayson, one of Nkemdiche's closest friends, announced via Twitter he had verbally committed to the Tigers. Kamara has said for months he and Nkemdiche intended to play together in college.
Turns out, he was right.

For Clemson, this pickup is, quite frankly, huge. Remember, this is the program that lost in embarrassing fashion on Jan. 4 in the Orange Bowl to West Virginia 70-33. That prompted the Tigers to part ways with defensive coordinator Kevin Steele and bring in Brent Venables from Oklahoma to replace him.

On May 18, Venables and fellow Clemson assistant Tony Elliott were in Georgia to watch Grayson's spring game.

So were two coaches each from Alabama and Ole Miss, and one from LSU. Nkemdiche originally was supposed to commit that night, but changed his mind a couple weeks earlier. After the scrimmage, he told Rivals.co he hoped to make a pledge sometime this summer.

On Tuesday, Nkemdiche Tweeted: "Going to visit Clemson tomorrow my boy Wayne already up there ."

Wayne is Wayne Gallman, a three-star Grayson running back who committed to Clemson in April.

After arriving at Clemson on Wednesday, Nkemdiche Tweeted, "Coolin with my boy Sammy Watkins talking football."

A day later, he pulled the trigger.

[ MORE CLEMSON: Check out TigerIllustrated .com]
Although Clemson has landed several big-name recruits -- many in the past decade -- this is the program's biggest pledge in recent memory and perhaps ever.

In 2011, the Tigers scored four five-star recruits, including Watkins, a dynamic receiver who was a star as a true freshman last season. None of the four however, were in the top 10 of the prospect rankings.

Nkemdiche is a consensus No. 1. Some have called him the best prep player in Georgia since Herschel Walker, class of 1980.

How did Clemson do it? How did the Tigers pull it off when few gave them a fighting chance?

Well, for starters, the Kamara connection clearly was significant. It also couldn't have hurt that Gallman already was on board at Clemson. And, of course, there is this: Conn and Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney once were teammates -- and roommates -- at Alabama.

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Published on June 16, 2012.

Manna from the earth...

I love my garden.
"The love of gardening is a seed once sown that never dies." - Gertrude Jekyll, garden designer.
"A garden is a grand teacher. It teaches patience and careful watchfulness; it teaches industry and thrift; above all it teaches entire trust." - Gertrude Jekyll 1843-1932

"There is no spot of ground, however arid, bare or ugly, that cannot be tamed into such a state as may give an impression of beauty and delight." - Gertrude Jekyll

"Gardening is always more or less a warfare against nature. It is true we go over to the 'other side' for a few hints, but we might as well abandon our spades and pitchforks as pretend that nature is everything and art nothing." - James Shirley Hibberd, journalist and gardener, 1825-90.

"To forget how to dig the earth and to tend the soil is to forget ourselves." - Mahatma Gandhi
"Gardening requires lots of water - most of it in the form of perspiration." - Lou Erickson, cartoonist and illustrator 1913-1990

"I cannot persuade myself that a beneficent and omnipotent God would have designedly created parasitic wasps with the express intention of their feeding within the living bodies of Caterpillars." - Charles Darwin

"Climate is what we expect, weather is what we get" - Mark Twain

"Nothing is more the child of art than a garden." - Sir Walter Scott

"It is a golden maxim to cultivate the garden for the nose, and the eyes will take care of themselves." - Robert Louis Stevenson

"A garden is a symbol of man's arrogance, perverting nature to human ends ..." - Tim Smit, in 'The Lost Gardens of Heligan'

"There is material enough in a single flower for the ornament of a score of cathedrals." - John Ruskin, 1851

"Who has learned to garden who did not at the same time learn to be patient?" - H.L.V. Fletcher, 1949

"To dig one's own spade into one's own earth! Has life anything better to offer than this?" - John Beverley Nichols, 1898-1983, author, playwright, journalist.

"beauty is a by-product, .... The main business of gardens is sex and death" - Sam Llewellyn, author and journalist, in 'The Sea Garden'

"No occupation is so delightful to me as the culture of the earth, and no culture comparable to that of the garden." - Thomas Jefferson

"Though an old man, I am but a young gardener." - Thomas Jefferson

"How fair is a garden amid the trials and passions of existence." - Benjamin Disraeli

"What a man needs in gardening is a cast-iron back, with a hinge in it." - Charles Dudley
Warner, 1829–1900, American essayist and novelist in 'My Summer in a Garden'

"We can complain because rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice because thorn bushes have roses." - Abraham Lincoln

"The man who has planted a garden feels that he has done something for the good of the world." - Vita Sackville-West, poet and novelist, 1892-1962

"The most noteworthy thing about gardeners is that they are always optimistic, always enterprising, and never satisfied. They always look forward to doing something better than they have ever done before." - Vita Sackville-West

"Won't you come into the garden, I would like my roses to see you." Richard Brinsley Sheridan (1751-1816) said to his future wife Elizabeth inferring that she was more beautiful.

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Published on June 16, 2012.

immigration blues

From Atrios

Asshole Test

I think a reasonable test of whether someone is an asshole without any hope of improvement is if you sit them down and explain that:

1) People without the legal right to live and work in this country often bring their kids here with them.

2) Those kids are often quite young when they arrive. You know, babies.

3) Such kids also are undocumented.

4) In many cases they grow up not or barely speaking the language of their home countries, depending on their age and particular circumstances.

5) Given the whole lack of documentation thing, most of these kids have never been to the country that their parents came from and don't know any of the family, if any, that are still there.

6) Upon becoming adults, their work and educational opportunities are complicated and limited.

If the person's response is, "they're illegal, deport them," then you know you've found an asshole.

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