Brian (alexandria, va): HD, thank you for crushing our dreams. So you are saying that if by some miracle Hokies manage to run the tables we will be crushed by the gators in the NC?
Heather Dinich: Ahem. Chomp.
We hear a lot about how many players don’t fit into NFL schemes because they play in the spread in college. Well, wouldn’t it behoove the NFL to start playing more spread and get a quicker payout from the talent it drafts? Oh, right. Supposedly things like the spread and the, uh, Wildcat, don’t work in the NFL. Just like the spread couldn’t work in the SEC and Urban Meyer was doomed to fail….hmmmm.
SpreadOffense.com had an interesting interview with Tulsa's co-offensive coordinator Herb Hand. Good talk about college concepts that work in the NFL and how, the ever-present worries about doomsday scenarios on that offense (think Dennis Dixon and Oregon in 2007), and other issues.
The Dan Hawkins experiment has been mostly a flop for the Buffs, but a simplified approach may be in line for 2009. Comment from quarterback Cody Hawkins in a recent The Sporting News:
The mentality is going back to 2006-2007. We want to run the heck out of the ball and throw it down the field
Just moments ago on College Football Live, ESPN's Joe Schad outlined the three-point defense by BCS officials as they head into a Congressional subcommittee hearing tomorrow.
1)The regular season must be preserved as the key entity of the game
2)Several bowls would fail if a playoff were enacted
3)The logistics to install a playoff aren't there
Not a bad start.
I'm definitely against a playoff although I have problems with the BCS, which I think I'll get to soon. I think there's ways to remedy the BCS that keeps it in line with college football tradition and avoids a playoff.
Our government (for my American readers) and the NCAA could learn a thing or two from the ill-fated manifesto detailed in the movie Jerry Maguire. Essentially, less clients, less money, better service.
Stop being all things to all people. Focus on what you do well.
I bring this up because I found two amusing items today.
1)Register-Guard columnist George Schroeder attempts to pass the NCAA 'recruiting certification exam'. This is what coaches must pass in order to be eligible to recruit.
Here’s what I learned: The NCAA manual isn’t easy to navigate. It’s filled with complicated stipulations and detailed exceptions. Just skimming the thing makes it easier to appreciate how coaches can try to do the right thing, and still get it wrong.
Oregon coach Chip Kelly has the proper -- and because this is the NCAA, lopsided -- perspective on things:
"If it makes sense for a student-athlete or it makes sense for a coach, then you can’t do it," he says. "That’s my fail-safe when I have to guess."
2)Georgia coach Mark Richt will not be permitted to attend the graduation ceremony of signee Chris Burnette. He never had a chance unless Burnette was named valedictorian, a feat nearly accomplished but fell just short.
Says The Senator, " I’ll never get the NCAA, I swear."
Look, I think the NCAA, or a body like it, is essential to college athletics. But over the years the current organization has become increasingly warped and wrapped up in its own nonsense. It wastes its time and money trying to participate in social engineering while completely whiffing on the some obvious good deeds like what Richt would like to do. The contradictions are endless and intensifying.
At its heart, my impression is that its a rules-based organization. At this point in time that is a massive, potentially fatal mistake. At some point they're going to need to make a ton of sacrifices and focus on whats really important and let the little things slide. In so doing the health of the organization and its perception with the public would likely improve and be a step towards preservation.
Great article today by ESPN's Ivan Maisel. He advocates those in charge of the BCS go on the offensive.
I second the call.
The commissioners are populists, too. What none of them did, or has done with any effectiveness, is mount a vigorous defense of the BCS.
None of them has pointed out the correlation between "fixing" the BCS and whose ox is being gored.
Keep in mind I think the guys USC will put on the field this year (Malcolm Smith, Chris Galippo, Michael Morgan) might end up being better players than this group, at the college level. Via the Orange County Register's USC Blog:
Cushing: “Tough guy, and he wants to prove it to you every time. Heart. The definition of hard work, and he’s going to carry that flag. Captain, rah-rah guy. He’ll be an extremely good pro because he’s going to be your tough guy, he’ll play hard, he’s a complete ballplayer, you’re not going to outwork him and you’re not going to out-tough him.”
Matthews: ‘Tremendous athlete. Never satisfied. Carries a huge chip on his shoulder. Has a mean streak about him. He’s never happy with himself. He’s the biggest critic of himself. He’s always trying to show people how good he is.”
Maualuga: “Spectacular. The guy who will knock you out. He’s the Mike Tyson of the group. He’s going to intimidate you. He’s gong to come in throwing haymakers.”
And, by extension, the schedules for 12-team conferences. Nothing you haven't heard in this space before obviously, but (full schedule):
--- Only five road games
--- Don't have to play Georgia or Florida
--- Non-conference games with Memphis, Southeast Louisiana, UAB, Northern Arizona
The Rebels could be entirely average this year and still come out with an impressive record. The eyes can deceive but with a schedule like that its great that so many college games are now televised and we can judge teams on actual performance rather than their gerrymandered schedules. Or, at least, we hope we can. You never know with poll voters, unfortunately.
Actually found this via another link at Smart Football (great site). Some love from The Blue-Gray Sky's J-DUB. Many thanks, especially considering I've been gone so long.
Read the entire thing (really, read it), but in the name of vanity the relevant CFR part here:
Have to admit that I'm partial to this site because, like me, it does not want to see a playoff in college football. Before you condemn us, look who else is part of our coalition: Chuck Klosterman, Mike Greenberg and Megan Fox (okay, I'm just guessing on that last name).
Time to return, I suppose.
Watching ESPN's College Football Live, John Saunders just told Colt McCoy he's against a playoff. Who knew?
I'm back, apologies for the gap in posting here.
What we have now are various tiered clusters of teams sorting themselves out atop the heap in college football.
- Texas Tech
- Oklahoma State
- Penn State
- Ohio State
- Oregon State
And then it gets silly, but chief among the remaining teams I think Boise State, Utah, BYU, TCU, Michigan State and Cincinnati are worth mentioning.
I carefully place USC fourth. Anyone who has seen them this year knows their offense is almost comically inept at times but they're probably playing the best defense of any team in several years and may have finally found an offensive identity running the ball with abandon in the second half against Stanford last week.
The Big 12 is having an amazing year, but we already know that.
Oregon State is on a mission and I'm fairly certain they'll win out and with ease, cementing their first trip to the Rose Bowl in ages.
For selfish reasons I hope form holds for most of these teams. I'd love to see a Florida/Texas Tech BCS Championship game, or maybe Florida/Oklahoma (or Texas), with USC playing either Alabama with all that tradition or USC playing Texas Tech to pit the nation's top offense against the nation's top defense.
At first an Oregon State/Penn State rematch is unfortunate, but both teams have changed a great deal since then. Penn State is returning to Earth while Oregon State plays scorched Earth against the remains of its schedule. Neither team has been to Pasadena in a while, so its a feel-good story between two solid teams that will be much more competitive than the first time around.
“I think it is about time that we had playoffs in college football. I’m fed up with these computer rankings and this and that and the other. Get eight teams — the top eight teams right at the end. You got a playoff. Decide on a National Champion,” Obama said.
Bobby Bowden's last ride? Join me as we figure it all out.
Also: Undefeated BYU at TCU. The fun begins at 730 ET.
- Penn State
- Ohio State
- Oklahoma State
- Texas Tech
- North Carolina
- Boise State
- Georgia Tech