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Thursday, August 30, 2012

OT: August 2012 College Football Thread

The 2012 College football thread!

Mess with the Meat, you get the Wad! Posted: August 30, 2012 at 12:52 AM | 1503 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: college football

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   501. Spivey Posted: September 15, 2012 at 11:18 PM (#4236971)
That would have been a super weak offensive PI call. I'm rooting for Stanford as much as any of you, but that was just a big-time play.

USC's offensive line is getting embarrassed.
   502. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: September 15, 2012 at 11:19 PM (#4236972)
That poor center.
   503. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: September 15, 2012 at 11:19 PM (#4236973)
They are just DESTROYING 69.
   504. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 15, 2012 at 11:19 PM (#4236974)
4th and long, right where USC wants them, if you watched the first half.
   505. CFBF Is A Golden Spider Duck Posted: September 15, 2012 at 11:20 PM (#4236976)
If Stanford gives up a fourth and 33...
   506. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 15, 2012 at 11:21 PM (#4236977)
I still think MSU wins BIG, but man ND has dominated MSU's OL and stymied everything (yes, I know they are man down on OL).
   507. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 15, 2012 at 11:22 PM (#4236981)
This is a lot like end of '95 Orange Bowl, with Frank Costa getting sacked repeatedly.

Wow, Stanford is totally game, sans Oregon.
   508. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: September 15, 2012 at 11:22 PM (#4236982)
spivey

well, i don't know what today has to do with games in the past.

i am speaking to a head coach who is very comfortable pointing the finger at other people and declaring 'them' the problem.

now if you are suggesting that the guy can coach i acknowledge that he has his positives in terms of being a collegiate head coach. but i know him to be a person of low character and this season has highlighted his worst traits.

always shifting the blame for one



   509. CFBF Is A Golden Spider Duck Posted: September 15, 2012 at 11:22 PM (#4236983)
That first sight of your presents on Christmas day. The bright leaves of new autumn. The first kiss with a woman you love. Watching Lane Kiffin lose a game.
   510. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: September 15, 2012 at 11:24 PM (#4236985)
Btw, mentioned up thread, but, hat tip to Gus Johnson. Great game call.
   511. hokieneer Posted: September 15, 2012 at 11:26 PM (#4236987)
They are just DESTROYING 69.


You'd think USC would put Barkley in the gun to try and protect Barkley and the center more. I think I saw one shotgun snap that entire series (of course Barkley was also sacked on that one from the edge).
   512. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 15, 2012 at 11:26 PM (#4236988)
I'm glad I sandbagged the schedule today, great night of games, though the mid late afternoon slate was garbage, good thing I was outside with the girls.
   513. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: September 15, 2012 at 11:28 PM (#4236989)
i give the wisconsin defense a lot of credit. sure there are some broken plays here and there but the last two weeks the team has given up 24 points, some of that on short fields, and has kept a team saddled with a sorry offense and erratic special teams in the game.

the line has been much more active than i anticipated.
   514. Spivey Posted: September 15, 2012 at 11:31 PM (#4236990)
The early games were really good, the mid games mostly sucked, and the late games were great. Still going to be one of the best weeks of the year, and definitely the best week of the year thus far.
   515. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: September 15, 2012 at 11:34 PM (#4236991)
Michigan has its work cut out for them next week. Kelly may be an #######, but he's got himself quite a team this year, it seems.
   516. Dan The Mediocre Posted: September 15, 2012 at 11:34 PM (#4236992)
I had ND pegged for a double-digit loss after their terrible showing against Purdue. This game has been a very pleasant surprise to me.

Side note: ND has 6 of their opponents ranked going into today(it'll be back down to 5 unless BYU picks it up).
   517. Spivey Posted: September 15, 2012 at 11:59 PM (#4237003)
UCLA is a dark horse for the Pac 12, IMO.
   518. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 16, 2012 at 12:06 AM (#4237007)
agreed, Oregon St, at Cal, at Col, vs Utah next up for the Bruins, close the year with USC and Stanford at the Rose Bowl, and no Oregon in reg season. Probably not a dark horse when you look at things today. Two weeks ago, definitely.
   519. Spivey Posted: September 16, 2012 at 12:32 AM (#4237026)
The Longhorns need to work on tackling. And Ash is and always will be a flawed QB. But going into a hostile environment like this and putting up 60+ points is impressive. The defense has had a lot of good points, but I definitely didn't see much from the linebackers and defensive backs today.
   520. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 16, 2012 at 12:39 AM (#4237028)
Yeah, hard to figure out what to take away from games like this. In space Texas looked vulnerable, I guess Ole Miss has some athletes with the ball in their hands, but Texas seemed soft. Hard to keep intensity up for a game like this, but Texas took care of business. I hope the fans enjoyed the Grove, world's greatest tailgating location IMO.
   521. Spivey Posted: September 16, 2012 at 12:43 AM (#4237030)
world's greatest tailgating location IMO.


I was thinking to myself earlier I should have gone down there. Definitely looks like a lot of fun.
   522. Spivey Posted: September 16, 2012 at 12:44 AM (#4237031)
I don't like people being hurt, of course. But I think Bergeron being injured may improve the team. Brown/Gray I think is better than Bergeron/Brown.
   523. Jeff Frances the Mute Posted: September 16, 2012 at 12:48 AM (#4237034)
Mora has done a very good job at UCLA so far. The team looks dramatically better and he has upgraded recruiting significantly.
   524. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 16, 2012 at 12:50 AM (#4237036)
weird timeout by Ole Miss, Mack Brown lining up for taking a knee on 3rd down, then the weird exchange. Good move by UT.

OMG, Utah, WTF was that?

BYU qb not ready for shotgun snap, Utah runs it back for 6. A #### six.
   525. OCF Posted: September 16, 2012 at 12:52 AM (#4237038)
I only caught the last half of the 4th quarter of the USC-Stanford game. Once, many decades ago, I was a lineman in high school (and not very good at it). But what I saw just jumped out at me: the linemen won that game for Stanford, on both sides of the ball.

Did you notice the play in Stanford's last drive where on short yardage, they faked into the middle and pitched to a tailback sprinting for the sideline? They made that work with line splits. The offensive line was jammed in there shoulder to shoulder, which is exactly what you want to do if you're going wide. If you want to bust it up the middle, you're better off taking wide splits.
   526. Spivey Posted: September 16, 2012 at 12:55 AM (#4237041)
Houston was a lot more than just Keenum last year. I'm surprised they've played so poorly right now.
   527. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 16, 2012 at 12:56 AM (#4237042)
good call OCF, that and frankly it becomes hypnotic, the defense gets sucked in over the course of the game, especially in short yardage. It works both ways too, you can bust people on the edge all game, and then sneak FB or Ibacks on counters and leads. Nothing to me is more enjoyable than watching an effective rushing game.*

*I would love to see footage of NIU v Army today. The Cadets lost, with 486 yards rushing and 3 pass attempts, 41-40. too bad.
   528. Spivey Posted: September 16, 2012 at 12:57 AM (#4237044)
Arizona also looks good this year. The Pac 12 looks a lot deeper than I thought at the beginning of the season.
   529. Jeff Frances the Mute Posted: September 16, 2012 at 12:58 AM (#4237045)
Houston has a brand new coaching staff and their new staff looks like a big downgrade.
   530. Spivey Posted: September 16, 2012 at 01:01 AM (#4237047)
Utah is a good enough football school. But I'm thrilled that the Pac 12 wanted to take Colorado off of the Big 12's hands. They suck at football. They suck at basketball. They suck at baseball. They aren't a particularly good academic school.
   531. CFBF Is A Golden Spider Duck Posted: September 16, 2012 at 01:09 AM (#4237049)
They aren't a particularly good academic school.


CU's graduate programs are pretty good, especially in the hard sciences. I will now stop talking about the University of Colorado at Boulder's graduate programs.
   532. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 16, 2012 at 01:17 AM (#4237054)
(CU)They suck at football.


worst (modern era, post WWII) program to ever win a MNC (a share of course)?

if not them, who? Clemson? BYU? Maryland, Cuse?
   533. puck Posted: September 16, 2012 at 01:22 AM (#4237056)
Wow its been a long time since the glory days of Kordell, Rashaan Salaam and Michael Westbrook.

And Rae Carruth. SI has a story this week about his son, who has cerebral palsy (which they say is a result of the blood loss in the mother after the shooting). Disturbing story, to be reminded of the crime in such detail. Plus, after he was convicted, he sued for full custody of the baby (after many appeals he eventually lost). He still shows no remorse and claims it was a drug deal gone bad.

And now I'm sorry to have reminded you all of his existence.
   534. puck Posted: September 16, 2012 at 01:25 AM (#4237057)
They suck at baseball.

I wish. That would mean they had a team.

The so-called football team plays USC, Oregon, and Stanford in consecutive weeks. Nice to give all those teams a bye week. I hope the Pac-12 doesn't have an out clause.
   535. Spivey Posted: September 16, 2012 at 01:29 AM (#4237058)
Rae Carruth is worse than Alabama oversigning.
   536. CFBF Is A Golden Spider Duck Posted: September 16, 2012 at 01:33 AM (#4237059)
Nothing is worse than anything Saban does.
   537. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: September 16, 2012 at 01:43 AM (#4237061)
I taught classes at Bama with players in it, and no one cheated in it.


Bull to your bull. I'm a GI at the University of Minnesota -- a school with much tougher academic standards than any SEC school -- and when I've had a football and/or basketball player in my classes, I've received repeated phone calls from minders whose job it is, in theory, to "check up" on a student's progress -- but whose actual job is to pressure me to give them a passing grade. I never caught anybody cheating, but that doesn't mean it didn't happen. There's not really any way to tell what happens outside your classroom.
   538. zenbitz Posted: September 16, 2012 at 02:40 AM (#4237069)
I was watching the 4th Quarter of UCLA/Houston just to see more interceptions. That was one of the sloppiest games (non weather division) I have ever seen. One team EACH had a "sideways" pass to the sideline go kinda backwards, hit the ground and get picked up by the other team. And Houston had another one out right picked. I was kinda half watching and I saw a long bomb complete to a UCLA player that was almost picked off by Houston. Except, actually Houston was on offense.
   539. Mess with the Meat, you get the Wad! Posted: September 16, 2012 at 01:58 PM (#4237291)
Stanford moves up to 9 in the AP
coaches poll continues to show that none of them watch the games
   540. Spivey Posted: September 16, 2012 at 02:11 PM (#4237300)
I don't see any big differences between the two, or anything clearly in the AP poll's favor. Besides the fact the AP has Notre Dame higher. I'm sure that's merely coincidence, right meatwad?
   541. Mess with the Meat, you get the Wad! Posted: September 16, 2012 at 02:13 PM (#4237304)
Wisconsin is ranked again in the coaches poll, they barly won there game against utah st and that gets them back in the rankings?
   542. Mess with the Meat, you get the Wad! Posted: September 16, 2012 at 02:15 PM (#4237305)
as for ND, they do have better wins the Kstate, Texas, and Florida
   543. Cowboy Popup Posted: September 16, 2012 at 02:20 PM (#4237309)
I don't see any big differences between the two, or anything clearly in the AP poll's favor.

The biggest difference, to me, is that VA Tech is 26th in the Coaches Poll. They'll be back in the rankings by next week. Just in time for Cincinnati to beat them I guess.
   544. Spivey Posted: September 16, 2012 at 02:22 PM (#4237312)
Wisconsin is ranked like 33rd in the AP poll. It's really not that big of a deal. Also, Utah State is a solid team. I do agree that Wisconsin probably isn't a top 25 team.

ND may have better wins than Texas, but that doesn't change the fact that if they played, Texas would win.
   545. Mess with the Meat, you get the Wad! Posted: September 16, 2012 at 02:24 PM (#4237314)
I wouldnt be so sure of that Spivey, that defense looks pretty solid this year
   546. Spivey Posted: September 16, 2012 at 02:26 PM (#4237316)
Sagarin's ratings have Alabama as 9.74 points better than the second best team (LSU). And over 15 points better than the 3rd best team. It's early, but we're looking at a team that could be historically great here. I guess we'll see what happens when they face a team that can throw the ball, but they look real good.
   547. TerpNats Posted: September 16, 2012 at 02:52 PM (#4237325)
Colorado: worst (modern era, post-WWII) program to ever win a MNC (a share of course)?

if not them, who? Clemson? BYU? Maryland, Syracuse?
I'd argue Brigham Young of '84, as it more or less won by default. Maryland was a power in the first half of the '50s (if the current post-bowl system was used, its 1951 team, not '53, would have been national champions, as it thrashed #1 Tennessee in the Sugar Bowl while the '53 champs lost to Oklahoma in the Orange Bowl).

One of the problems with evaluating this is that, in 2012 eyes, it's difficult -- heck, nearly impossible -- to envision an ACC or Big East (soon to be ACC) school as a national champion unless they reside in Florida. Things were different then.
   548. SteveM. Posted: September 16, 2012 at 03:10 PM (#4237332)
Bull to your bull. I'm a GI at the University of Minnesota -- a school with much tougher academic standards than any SEC school -- and when I've had a football and/or basketball player in my classes, I've received repeated phone calls from minders whose job it is, in theory, to "check up" on a student's progress -- but whose actual job is to pressure me to give them a passing grade. I never caught anybody cheating, but that doesn't mean it didn't happen. There's not really any way to tell what happens outside your classroom.


That may have happened at Minnesota but I was never pressured to change grades. Never, and I had players during the Franccione, Shula and Saban eras. I had academic progress reports to fill out, but that is it. I flunked athletes and never heard from the athletic department. One of the best students I ever have had was a gymnast (for some reason, gymnastics is the football of women's sports at UA).
   549. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: September 16, 2012 at 03:20 PM (#4237338)
Arkansas is absolutely reeling. I'm worried Rutgers is going to be walking into an angry buzz saw next week.
   550. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: September 16, 2012 at 03:22 PM (#4237339)
Also, anyone notice that the ACC sucks absolute donkey dick outside of FSU? I'm getting a little sick of all the guffawing about the Big East from ESPN talking heads when the Carolina Conference seems demonstrably worse this year.
   551. Spivey Posted: September 16, 2012 at 03:29 PM (#4237342)
The ACC is ranked at the same level as the Big East in Sagarin's ratings. I think Florida State is certainly a big factor in that. Which makes sense. A couple of mediocre conferences. But one appears to have a legitimate title contender.
   552. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: September 16, 2012 at 03:56 PM (#4237353)
And yet the ACC is one of the Big 5 and the Big East is an embarrassment to the sport.

the Big East doesn't have a title contender, but they also don't seem to have any absolute garbage like Wake or Duke (well, Syracuse is close).
   553. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: September 16, 2012 at 03:57 PM (#4237354)
heh heh, Schiano blowing it. Seen this before.
   554. Spivey Posted: September 16, 2012 at 05:51 PM (#4237427)
As someone who doesn't have a dog in the fight, I think that the ACC and Big East are both embarrassments to the sport.
   555. LionoftheSenate (Brewers v A's World Series) Posted: September 16, 2012 at 07:40 PM (#4237491)
Bull to your bull. I'm a GI at the University of Minnesota -- a school with much tougher academic standards than any SEC school -- and when I've had a football and/or basketball player in my classes, I've received repeated phone calls from minders whose job it is, in theory, to "check up" on a student's progress -- but whose actual job is to pressure me to give them a passing grade. I never caught anybody cheating, but that doesn't mean it didn't happen. There's not really any way to tell what happens outside your classroom.


I'm certain Vandy has tougher standards than Minny. Texas AM and Florida are probably on par with Minny. I wouldn't tout academics too hard at Minny on a sports message board considering the University of Minnesota has dusty Final Four banners buried in a closet somewhere because of a massive academic cheating scandal.
   556. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: September 16, 2012 at 08:59 PM (#4237533)
That may have happened at Minnesota but I was never pressured to change grades. Never, and I had players during the Franccione, Shula and Saban eras. I had academic progress reports to fill out, but that is it. I flunked athletes and never heard from the athletic department. One of the best students I ever have had was a gymnast (for some reason, gymnastics is the football of women's sports at UA).


The best student I had in my class last spring was actually a second stringer (on scholarship) on our terrible football team. Mine never reached to the level of actual pressuring -- I never had a student who really came close to flunking -- but I have no way of knowing if there was cheating.

Was the kid you flunked on scholarship? I assume that makes a substantial difference.
   557. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 16, 2012 at 09:14 PM (#4237538)
I'd argue Brigham Young of '84, as it more or less won by default. Maryland was a power in the first half of the '50s (if the current post-bowl system was used, its 1951 team, not '53, would have been national champions, as it thrashed #1 Tennessee in the Sugar Bowl while the '53 champs lost to Oklahoma in the Orange Bowl).

One of the problems with evaluating this is that, in 2012 eyes, it's difficult -- heck, nearly impossible -- to envision an ACC or Big East (soon to be ACC) school as a national champion unless they reside in Florida. Things were different then.


I meant to emphasize school with the lowest program stature (historically) to win a MNC post WWII. If I were to pick the worst single team to claim a MNC, then I'd say either BYU, Minn '60, though GT and CU were quite a dubious pair in '90.

Maryland '53 despite losing to OU in the Orange was pretty damn good team. That was the early portion of OU's 47 game winning streak.
   558. Der-K thinks the Essex Green were a good band. Posted: September 16, 2012 at 09:42 PM (#4237547)
I'm w spivey.
   559. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 16, 2012 at 10:06 PM (#4237564)
Have people finally had a chance to see that BYU at Utah ending. That was incredible, had a little '72 USSR v USA to it, except BYU couldn't capitalize.
   560. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: September 16, 2012 at 10:19 PM (#4237572)
I saw it live. When the crowd rushed the field on the first FG, I just about crapped myself. Then when BYU missed the second FG, I yelled so loud I woke up my GF on the other end of the apartment. She came stumbling into the living room half asleep & nude to see if I was okay.
   561. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: September 17, 2012 at 10:08 AM (#4237802)
Lots of good games this week; the best slate yet (IMO).

There are ranked team showdowns between:

Michigan - ND
Kansas State - Oklahoma
Clemson - FSU
Arizona - Oregon

And some more interesting matchups besides:

BYU - Boise State
Oregon State - UCLA
Rutgers - Arkansas
Vanderbilt - Georgia
etc.


   562. zonk Posted: September 17, 2012 at 11:00 AM (#4237848)
I'm wondering what Northwestern needs to do to get some respect this year...

I suppose on one hand, you can say they've exhibited holes in their game -- a defensive debacle against Syracuse, an anemic offense in the first half against Vandy, and red zone problems against BC -- but, then again, I also think they've shown more than just flashes on both sides of the ball. They look like they have two pretty good RBs, with nicely contrasting styles, in Trumpy and Martin. The defense looked REALLY strong against BC virtually all game -- in particular, they controlled the line of scrimmage against a very big Eagle O-line and really did it without a whole lot of blitzing. Ordinarily, I wouldn't think a QB rotation would work -- but Fitz seems to be perfectly mixing Colter and Siemian and the offense as a whole seems entirely comfortable with both.

I'll grant that Syracuse, BC, and Vanderbilt is no buzzsaw -- but it's hard for me to see how NU (assuming they don't stumble against South Dakota this weekend) doesn't come out of the pre-conference schedule looking better than everyone else in the conference. If nothing else, I think they've got as many wins against BCS conference foes as the rest of the league combined.

After watching the Spartans get handled so easily by the Irish - I don't think it's beyond the realm of possibilities that the MSU-NU game in November decides the Legends rep for the title game and there's no one in the other division (remember that OSU is ineligible) I don't think they can beat in the conference title game. Wonder what Delaney would think of a Purdue-Northwestern title game ;-)

Don't get me wrong - I'm not thinking they're a top 10 team or anything, but I really don't see anyone in the conference they'll be significantly undermanned against... maybe that's more a statement of the B1G10 than anything else, but it would be interesting where a fantasy 12-0 NU B1G10 champion slots in the BCS. Assuming the other conferences play out with Stanford, FSU, Alabama, OU/Texas, and who cares -- figure Alabama and maybe one other team (I'd guess FSU) being undefeated, I wouldn't presume to make the case for the Cats playing for a title.... but it would be interesting.
   563. hokieneer Posted: September 17, 2012 at 11:03 AM (#4237851)
The ACC is ranked at the same level as the Big East in Sagarin's ratings. I think Florida State is certainly a big factor in that. Which makes sense. A couple of mediocre conferences. But one appears to have a legitimate title contender.


How good is Clemson this year? They've easily beaten who they have suppose to, and struggled against a terrible Auburn team but without Watkins. I haven't seen a snap of a game though, so I really have nothing much to go on.

I also have trouble accepting that THIS IS THE YEAR that FSU is a title contender. I've had that tale told to me for a decade now.

Lots of good games this week; the best slate yet (IMO)


For CP and myself, WVU finally plays a team from a BCS conference.
   564. Spivey Posted: September 17, 2012 at 11:12 AM (#4237861)
Arizona/Oregon could be a lot of fun. I guess we'll get to see Florida State against a team that isn't among the worst in football, as well.
   565. Cowboy Popup Posted: September 17, 2012 at 11:15 AM (#4237864)
Lots of good games this week; the best slate yet (IMO)

Absolutely! I have no idea how good anyone in the Big 12 is since the entire conference played no one. Start to find who is who out on Saturday!

For CP and myself, WVU finally plays a team from a BCS conference.

Heck yeah! Although playing MD ain't what it used to be. I hope they get back on their feet soon.

BTW, how about that goal line stand in the 3rd quarter against JMU? Best moment of the game on Saturday IMO.
   566. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: September 17, 2012 at 11:16 AM (#4237866)
Arizona/Oregon could be a lot of fun.

What's the O/U on that one going to be? 100 points?
   567. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 17, 2012 at 11:28 AM (#4237872)
There are ranked team showdowns between:

Michigan - ND
Kansas State - Oklahoma
Clemson - FSU
Arizona - Oregon



picked the wrong weekend to go on vacation. Wife gave me no choice. should have access to games at night though.
   568. hokieneer Posted: September 17, 2012 at 11:38 AM (#4237882)
Heck yeah! Although playing MD ain't what it used to be. I hope they get back on their feet soon.

BTW, how about that goal line stand in the 3rd quarter against JMU? Best moment of the game on Saturday IMO.


I had trouble determining the categorization label of MD this week. BCS team, while true, is really a deceiving statement.

Yeah, Geno had a couple nice throws, but the stand was the best part. I still have little-to-no faith in the defense. Good news, the Baylor game should be exciting and have a 90 O/U.

I did have a little trouble reacting when WVU went Punt, EOH drive, and turnover on downs. 3 possessions without scoring?
   569. Tom Nawrocki Posted: September 17, 2012 at 11:48 AM (#4237894)
I'm wondering what Northwestern needs to do to get some respect this year...


They've got home games coming up against South Dakota and Indiana, so they could very easily be 5-0 at that point. Then road games against Penn State and Minnesota, so 7-0 is a possibility. The Cats haven't opened a season 7-0 since 1936.
   570. zonk Posted: September 17, 2012 at 12:08 PM (#4237910)

They've got home games coming up against South Dakota and Indiana, so they could very easily be 5-0 at that point. Then road games against Penn State and Minnesota, so 7-0 is a possibility. The Cats haven't opened a season 7-0 since 1936.


Interestingly, MarQueis Gray may miss a month -- which would make the NU game his first back. The Gopher backup had an effective game - perhaps more than effective, but Gray makes their offense go. I have little fear of going into Happy Valley at this point.

Figure if everything breaks right, that Nebraska home game looks likely to be the marquee B1G10 matchup in week 8. They'd still have the the Michigans (Iowa looks awfully down this year), but I really am liking this team's versatility.
   571. esseff Posted: September 17, 2012 at 12:12 PM (#4237919)
They've got home games coming up against South Dakota and Indiana, so they could very easily be 5-0 at that point. Then road games against Penn State and Minnesota, so 7-0 is a possibility. The Cats haven't opened a season 7-0 since 1936.


Unfortunately, they still won't have played anything close to a ranked team. 3-0 against BCS-conference teams sounds best if you don't have to mention that the teams are Syracuse, Vandy and Boston College.
   572. LionoftheSenate (Brewers v A's World Series) Posted: September 17, 2012 at 12:30 PM (#4237932)

They've got home games coming up against South Dakota and Indiana, so they could very easily be 5-0 at that point. Then road games against Penn State and Minnesota, so 7-0 is a possibility. The Cats haven't opened a season 7-0 since 1936.


No doubt it is possible. But whenever programs of the caliber of Northwestern start checking off automatic wins weeks in advance, they usually fail to materialize.
   573. Tom Nawrocki Posted: September 17, 2012 at 12:39 PM (#4237945)


But whenever programs of the caliber of Northwestern start checking off automatic wins weeks in advance, they usually fail to materialize.



Calling something "a possibility" is not at all the same thing as calling it "automatic."

I do suspect that NU will be favored in each of its next four games.
   574. Mess with the Meat, you get the Wad! Posted: September 17, 2012 at 12:57 PM (#4237975)
ND v Michigan will be under the lights in south bend, should be a good game to watch. I think ND can follow Alabama's blueprint for beating them.
   575. zonk Posted: September 17, 2012 at 12:58 PM (#4237977)

No doubt it is possible. But whenever programs of the caliber of Northwestern start checking off automatic wins weeks in advance, they usually fail to materialize.


Oh sure, hey -- I distinctly recall the 1995 and 1996 toe stubs when they were looking ahead, so it wouldn't at all shock me if South Dakota ends the fantasy before it really even starts.

That said, I think it's fair to say that the Cats at this point are a mid-tier program in the conference. It's been nearly a two decades since they've been perennial conference doormats. They've got a stable Head Coach still two years shy of being 40 who will probably be around (barring epic scandal) for another 20-25 years. The trustees just this past weekend signed on to an expensive and shiny new lakeside training facility. With both Penn State and Ohio State looking at a couple of trying years due to probationary issues - the time is now for the program to make its move.

Specifically to this season, though -- this team just looks top to bottom better than I expected. They graduated an awfully strong class, but there's nota facet of their game that looks particularly weak. Like I said originally, they all looked problematic in stretches, but from the running game to the passing game to defending the pass to defending the run to special teams, they've also all had more than just flashes of being pluses.
   576. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: September 17, 2012 at 01:12 PM (#4238002)
UMass's introduction to the FBS is not going so well. Kudos to them for a good OOC schedule, but it doesn't look like they'll be competitive in the MAC either.
   577. cmd600 Posted: September 17, 2012 at 01:15 PM (#4238010)
I don't think it's beyond the realm of possibilities that the MSU-NU game in November decides the Legends


but I really don't see anyone in the conference they'll be significantly undermanned against


Northwestern may be a bit up and the rest of the Big 10 down, but Northwestern just doesn't have the same talent that most teams in the league have. I don't see what's going to be too much different from a couple years ago where they started 5-0 and then struggled in conference play. Sure anything is in the realm of possibilities, but they are significantly out-talented by Nebraska, Michigan, and MSU, and will probably drop one of the Iowa or Illinois games too.
   578. zonk Posted: September 17, 2012 at 01:28 PM (#4238027)

Northwestern may be a bit up and the rest of the Big 10 down, but Northwestern just doesn't have the same talent that most teams in the league have. I don't see what's going to be too much different from a couple years ago where they started 5-0 and then struggled in conference play. Sure anything is in the realm of possibilities, but they are significantly out-talented by Nebraska, Michigan, and MSU, and will probably drop one of the Iowa or Illinois games too.


I don't know... Venric Mark's size would probably make most other teams shy away from him, but I think Mike Trumpy is a legit back. Demetrius Fields is a perfectly fine receiver that I could see getting rotation time just about anywhere, and while USC transfer Kyle Prater never lived up to the hype, I think he's still uber-talented (he just hasn't stayed healthy). They have more question marks defensively, but Chi Chi Ariguzo is a player. Trevor Siemian was relatively well-recruited.

It's mostly in the trenches that they can't really compete with the Huskers, Wolverines, etc -- but that BC O line was supposed to be pretty decent, and the Cats' front just stuffed them most of the day without really much in the way of stunting, blitzing, and scheming.

Considering the turmoil with Wisconsin's line, the fact that Nebraska has just made an in-season switch to a 4-3 on the other side of the line, and Michigan's O-line looks subpar compared to their (old? some time ago?) usual... again - it's the right season for things not to go according to script.
   579. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 17, 2012 at 02:02 PM (#4238069)
the fact that Nebraska has just made an in-season switch to a 4-3 on the other side of the line,


It was actually a 4-3 defense to a 3-4 defense, but that still isn't as radical as people think. They have played some 3-4 over the entire Pelini era, and practiced it quite a bit this spring/summer.

I do agree w your larger point though about Nothwestern.

   580. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: September 17, 2012 at 03:34 PM (#4238217)
I admire the wishful thinking about northwestern, but they'll be 10+ dogs for much of their B1G schedule and lucky to lose only games.
   581. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 19, 2012 at 12:52 AM (#4239799)
Apparently UCONN may play Notre Dame at Fenway Park in 2014, to be considered a ND home game, details not finalized yet. I don't think football has been played at Fenway since the 60s.
   582. Infinite Joost (Voxter) Posted: September 19, 2012 at 07:57 AM (#4239857)
An ND home game?
   583. just plain joe Posted: September 19, 2012 at 10:13 AM (#4239961)
An ND home game?


Why not, the Navy-Notre Dame game earlier this season was a home game for the Irish. I would be willing to bet that the crowd at the UCONN-ND game at Fenway would be at least 90% ND fans.
   584. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: September 19, 2012 at 11:07 AM (#4239999)
Joe: the Ireland game was a home game for Navy (it was on NBC because they also have Navy broadcast rights) but the Miami game in Chicago is an ND home game.

EDIT: unless you were just speaking of crowd partisansip - in which case it was definitely an ND crowd.
   585. just plain joe Posted: September 19, 2012 at 11:31 AM (#4240028)
unless you were just speaking of crowd partisansip - in which case it was definitely an ND crowd.


My bad, I didn't watch enough of that game to determine who was the home team, etc., I just assumed it was an ND home game. You're right that most of the crowd was for Notre Dame.
   586. Spivey Posted: September 19, 2012 at 08:26 PM (#4240599)
I was just looking at the schedules of various Big 12 teams. TT has a pretty serious murderer's row of teams

vs. OU
vs. WVU
@TCU
@KSU
vs. UT

The 5 toughest teams, probably, in a row. I guess they get arguable the 3 best at home, but I think they'd have to feel really happy to finish that stretch 2-3.
   587. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 19, 2012 at 11:14 PM (#4240722)
Joe: the Ireland game was a home game for Navy (it was on NBC because they also have Navy broadcast rights) but the Miami game in Chicago is an ND home game.


Then why did Lundquist/Danielson do the game for CBS?
   588. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: September 19, 2012 at 11:31 PM (#4240732)
they'll be 10+ dogs for much of their B1G schedule and lucky to lose only games.

What, as opposed to losing their lives?
   589. Pops Freshenmeyer Posted: September 20, 2012 at 10:17 AM (#4240950)

Then why did Lundquist/Danielson do the game for CBS?

You're right. I'm an idiot.
   590. hokieneer Posted: September 20, 2012 at 10:39 AM (#4240968)
Should be a decent game on the blue turf tonight.
   591. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 20, 2012 at 11:47 AM (#4241042)
Yeah, wonder if BYU can recover, short week, really tough loss to rival Utah in weird fashion.
   592. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 20, 2012 at 11:13 PM (#4241744)
BYU with all the turnovers still hanging around. Great goaline stand after the fumble inside their own 5. Is that Reggie Smith the referee?
   593. Every Inge Counts Posted: September 21, 2012 at 12:34 AM (#4241762)
So BYU scores late, goes for 2 and misses it and they lose 7-6. Not a good week for BYU...
   594. Tulo's Fishy Mullet (mrams) Posted: September 21, 2012 at 11:07 PM (#4242734)
I know RGIII is gone, but I cannot imagine, five years ago, a Baylor at ULM game being TV worthy.

Great slate Saturday, heavily concentrated at night.
   595. Mess with the Meat, you get the Wad! Posted: September 22, 2012 at 11:01 AM (#4242850)
Ann Arbor is a whore
   596. cmd600 Posted: September 22, 2012 at 01:16 PM (#4242934)
578 - Sure, it might be as good of a chance as NW will ever see, but 580 is right. NW has a couple guys on each side of the ball who would be solid starters elsewhere in the Big 10, but about 8-10 starters who would never see the field at Nebraska or Michigan.
   597. Spivey Posted: September 22, 2012 at 02:08 PM (#4242957)
ULM vs. WKU is looking like a game I will actually want to make a point of watching this year.

In the big games, I like Oregon along the lines of 50-30. I like ND by a touchdown in a medium scoring game. I like Oklahoma by 17+, and Florida State by a couple of touchdowns. Unfortunately, in all of the big games the favorite is at home.
   598. cmd600 Posted: September 22, 2012 at 02:43 PM (#4242987)
Unfortunately, in all of the big games the favorite is at home


Yup. Went through my pick 'em league for this weeks games, and noticed that all my initial instincts were for the favorite. Went back through the picks again, and just could not find an underdog I really liked. I think Michigan makes it within 3 or 4 points, but that's it. I don't think K-State, Clemson or Arizona come within 14.
   599. Every Inge Counts Posted: September 22, 2012 at 03:11 PM (#4243014)
The LSU-Florida game is shaping up to be a huge game in October. Florida has looked a lot more explosive on offense and they have a good defense.
   600. cmd600 Posted: September 22, 2012 at 03:28 PM (#4243026)
599 - Please don't use this week's game to justify anything. Kentucky lost to W Kent last week. I think Florida, and the few SEC teams they've played so far, are all getting a rating bump because the SEC is just the best conference there ever was. A&M and Tennessee are just mediocre, and we already went over Kentucky.
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