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Top Teams 2008

After Week Seven

  1. Alabama
  2. Penn State
  3. Texas
  4. Oklahoma
  5. Florida
  6. USC
  7. Georgia
  8. LSU
  9. BYU
  10. Missouri
  11. Ohio State
  12. Oklahoma State
  13. Texas Tech
  14. Utah
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Another Unfocused Entry

Why not?

First item up: coaches' tenure and BCS appearances.

Ok, so this is a little late, but Georgia Sports Blog went to the trouble of determining the BCS conference coaches with the most tenure who have yet to make a BCS bowl game appearance.  Take a look.

Arkansas' Houston Nutt is atop the list, having coached since 1998.  Last year was his best chance but that kind of fell by the wayside.  Nipping at his heels is Clemson's Tommy Bowden whose team had a late collapse of its own.  A particular burr in this saddle is Cal's Jeff Tedford, tied for 7th longest wait.  He's been coaching since 2002 and would have gone to a BCS game in 2004, but Mack Brown happened.

GSB's Paul Westerdawg also lists BCS appearances by conference teams.  The Pac-10 leads the list, of course, with seven teams appearing in a BCS game.  As noted above it should be eight but Texas two-stepped Cal out of the way in 2004.  The Big 10 is tied with the Pac-10 but also has one more institution.

The ACC is particularly woeful with just four of its 12 institutions collecting BCS cash.  The snag, of course, is that Miami is counted with the Big East, having last entered a BCS game before the whole ugly ACC seduction of several Big East powers.

Now, for a moment of Heisman talk.  Heisman Pundit's released his "Winter Top 20", a list of the 20 players who will "at least get a whiff of legitimate consideration".

It's good to see West Virginia's Pat White crack the top ten at No. 6.  He doesn't get enough credit for his contribution to the West Virginia offensive machine.  HP's taken some flack for placing John David Booty at No. 1 but it's hard to argue with a winning, good-stat USC quarterback at the moment.  It's a little like center field for the Yankees, what can you do about it?

And now, some entertainment from the FanHouse.

---Top 10 cheerleader videos (???).  The Kelly Ripa one's comical.

---Domestic violence charges won't be filed against Cal's Marshawn Lynch.

---Auburn Tigers: 2004 National Champions? Yeh. Freakin'. Right.  Patrick, this is why it's so easy to take jabs at Auburn on here.

---Hippies get in the way of Cal's new stadium.  The bums lost, Lebowski!  Except, this time they won.  Dammit.

---Troy Smith exacts his revenge on Chris Leak.  Not really.

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Reader Comments (58)

as far as finding stuff on alabama to razz..

how about the sheer number of coaching changes in the last 10 years..or the fact the had 3 coaches in 1 year..still can't beat their "little brother"

class all the way.
January 31, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterpatrick's crow feast

This is the first coaching change at Alabama since CFR began :o). Wait a few years and if they're still doing that I'll get a good laugh.
January 31, 2007 | Registered CommenterCFR
"The rest of the Big 12 elite teams are untroubled by Texas Tech (for the most part) because they've seen it for several years now. It's not so unfamiliar and they have the talent and recruit the right guys to beat it."

Really? Which elite teams are "untroubled" by Texas Tech's offense?
January 31, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterRed Blooded
CFR - I don't want to pile on what seems to be "you against the world," but you have multiple times referred to this "lack of familiarity" argument, and in support pointed out that Cal didn't have the DB numbers in the backfield. I just respectfully disagree (strongly) with your take....your perceived relative disadvantage can be overcome with a creative gameplanning, including (a) offensively via a keep away strategy, ala the Tubberville approach much of this year (see AU vs. So.Car., AU vs. UF), and (b) defensively via a the stunt/blitz package - Nebraska had never encountered a wide open offense like the "Fun-n-Gun" in the '95 season Fiesta Bowl, and certainly didn't have the DB numbers to match up with the Florida receivers, a point many pundits picked up on in choosing Florida to win that game - the Nebraska coaches, in multi-week preparation for their bowl game, schemed a (at the time) fairly novel weak-side zone blitz package, Wuerffel never had time to hit his wide open receivers, and the rest was history.
Your argument carries some merit in the week-to-week regular season due to the lack of time and related restrictions on practice (see, for example UTenn vs. Air Force prior to the UF game this year), but not in the bowl context.
Cal's coaches had it handed to them, and rest is just ill founded rationalization, and, evidently, basketball.
January 31, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterLtrain
Interesting that CFR goes on and on about how Cal (and the Pac-10) got screwed out of a BCS bowl, but on the other hand he thinks Auburn fans should shut up about 2004 because everybody knows they did not get screwed at all.
January 31, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterMarty

I mentioned it once, in passing and since then have simply been justifying what I said in the comments. There is no campaign here.

With Auburn fans its an obsession. Huge difference. Cal didn't print out BCS shirts even though they were denied. Auburn DID print out national champions shirts even though nobody gave them a title. There's this whole connected to reality thing that merits my attention when it comes to Auburn.
January 31, 2007 | Registered CommenterCFR
Well after looking at the data here's what I find about elite Big 12 teams and Texas Tech's offense.

1)They were clearly troubled by it (I stand corrected, sort of)

2)Given how elite Big 12 defenses have fared against Texas Tech's offense, Cal probably deserves some slack for not having faced it the 3-6 times before as most other Big 12 teams have (and who just now are getting around to adjusting to it).

Data, present yourself:

Points allowed

24 in 2006
23 in 2005
13 in 2004
25 in 2003
15 in 2002
13 in 2001
13 in 2000

Notice the ascent? Once Texas Tech got the right talent after a few years they improved against Oklahoma, Texas (below) and others.

31 in 2006
17 in 2005
21 in 2004
40 in 2003
42 in 2002
7 in 2001
17 in 2000

Texas has begun to adjust, but like Cal they also had two games allowing over 40 PPG and nearly a third this year.

6 in 2006 (!)
26 in 2003
13 in 2002

34 in 2005
70 in 2004
31 in 2001

Texas A&M
31 in 2006
56 in 2005
25 in 2004
59 in 2003
48 in 2002
12 in 2001
15 in 2000

Ugly, ugly things since 2002.

Kansas State
59 in 2005
35 in 2004
38 in 2001
23 in 2000

So it's a mixed bag. The familiarity thing doesn't appear to be all too true (although Oklahoma, Texas and Texas A&M made modest gains this year, we'll see if that trend continues in the next few). BUT, Texas Tech has absolutely hammered away at a lot of very good defenses year in and year out, teams who do know what they're doing far more than California could have ever known and doing just as poorly.

Mixed bag.
January 31, 2007 | Registered CommenterCFR
There's a huge difference on the "we got screwed" scale between getting left out of a BCS bowl and getting left out of the BCS championship game.

CFR, since you're a proponent of this horrible system where opinions and computers are used to put teams into championship games, then you have to put up with the bellyaching. You'd hear much less of this if there was a playoff, I guarantee you that.

Also, Texas Tech could only muster 10 points and 329 yards of total offense against Alabama in the 2006 Cotton Bowl. Certainly no familiarity there with the prehistoric offenses they run in the SEC, right?
February 1, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterMarty
"You'd hear much less of this if there was a playoff, I guarantee you that."

I couldn't agree more, Marty. Instead, we'd have a whole new set of problems about which to bellyache!
February 1, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterBurrill
In CFR's defense, I don't believe that he is a proponent of the current system. Anti-playoff does not make you automatically a proponent of what is currently in place.
February 1, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterLtrain
Is CFR telling us that the 2nd best PAC-10 team has a bunch of crappy slow d-backs?....while a middling level SEC team(bama) has bucket loads of speed going 5-deep into d-back depth chart. But I thought the Pac-10 defenses were great they just had to face amazing passing attacks every week so they only looked slow and bad to us folks who drank too much moonshine and have never seen a good quarterback outside of the two starters in this week's super bowl.
February 1, 2007 | Unregistered Commentergabe
true burril...any possible combo of final four teams this year would have instigated tons of bellyaching.

Ohio State
Boise State

michigan would bitch of course...especially if they beat the #2 pac-10 team in the rose bowl.

LSU would bitch...especailly after plastering Notre Dame or some other over ranked team not from the SEC

but both those teams didn't even win their conference so who cares right?

ok Oklahaoma would bitch because they usually get into the game after losign their conference, imagine them not getting in the final foru after actually winning the conference and they'd still be bitching about oregon.

wake forest...they wouldn't bitch...
WV RUTG, LOU....they'd probably bitch some, but not too badly....who else?

well auburn might bitch because USC got in after losing to two crappy, crappy teams...why is auburn punished so badly when we lost to two less crappy teams and beat ....this bitching is dumb i know...usc > arkanasas...but others would have similar bitchfests.

who would have been your final fours before the bowl games? in a plus one format would you neccesarily pick the four teams ahead of time? this year it seemed like no one cared about boise state havign a chance until after the bowls...before then it was all about michigan and florida....before the bowls it would have been ...

...this is why I think the conferecne winner rule is important...even though LSU was clearly better than michigan i think LSU shouldn't have been allowed a coveted spot in the theoretical final four
February 1, 2007 | Unregistered Commentergabe

Come on Gabe. One thing I don't do here is play to the southern stereotypes. If anything I enjoy them, I'd sit down to a glass of bourbon anytime. I live in the south and enjoy its quirks and customs immensely. I respect you guys, but simply think the excessive hyping of the league is inaccurate and misleading and also a little mean spirited towards your football peers.

My work here is a counterbalance to all of that. Don't forget I stuck up for Florida this year during the whole Michigan/Florida brouhaha. I'm a little more dynamic than given credit for.

What I was saying is that Cal didn't have the depth of quality defensive backs to handle that. They had two good corners but after that, not much.

Their top two were better than Alabama's top two, but Alabama also had another 3-4 decent enough guys they could line up out there. When Texas Tech is going five wide every play the math is against any team with limited numbers of capable corners.

BTW only one of those Super Bowl starters is any good and he was polished enough coming out of high school and playing for a learned enough OC in college that he ended up plenty alright :o).

I don't think he would have been this great of a player had he ended up at any of the other 11 SEC institutions (at the time).
February 1, 2007 | Registered CommenterCFR
Playoffs are a bad, bad, idea. We've been over this before. Plus one, same thing.

Obviously I'm disappointed in how the BCS computers managed the end of the 2004 season in re: Cal/Texas, but now that I see how it worked I'm more willing to stand by the results.

Personally I'd rather just have the two polls and get back to doing it that way, and maybe we'll get that one day. In the meantime the BCS is a much better place than a playoff.
February 1, 2007 | Registered CommenterCFR

here is a little jem donated by the might nick saban.
February 1, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterpatrick
Gabe, do you remember when the conference champion was really important?

That's right -- when the conference winner went to the same bowl every year.
February 2, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterBurrill
conference champ would be really important if that was the one and only way to be eligible for the national championship & winnning the SEC should give you a shot + undefeated should give you a shot no matter what.
February 2, 2007 | Unregistered Commentergabe
I agree that it would be important in some way, but I think its overall importance would be much diminished. A conference championship would be seriously important only as a stepping stone to the Big Bad National Championship. Ultimately, who really cares that the Bears won the NFC North? Everyone's looking at the Super Bowl.

And what happens when one conference's #2 is clearly better than another conference's champion? Because that's not such a bizarre possibility.
February 2, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterBurrill

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