The Wizard of Odds raises an intriguing point: would this year’s Arkansas-Alabama game have had a different result if the NCAA had retained last year’s clock rules?
Timing is everything in this life.
Or at least the Appalachian State-Furman rivalry.
And if you’re a midwesterner, Mr. or Ms. Anonymous Detroit Free Press Writer, you can’t understand that. And if you can’t understand that, you can’t understand Tommy Bowden.
“I was shocked,” Bowden said. “Appalachian State and Furman are rivals, so it would be very natural for me to make a comparison. I guess people in that part of the country are not familiar with the Appalachian State-Furman rivalry and how close it’s been.”
By the way, last year ASU beat Furman 40-7. But I’m sure the game was much closer than the score indicated.
From a Q and A with NCAA head Myles Brand:
Q: Do you think Division I-A college football is moving toward a playoff system?
A: My reading of it is that the presidents are very much concerned to emphasize the regular season. They’re pleased with BCS games including the BCS championship, which has been very exciting the past few years, And they’re pleased about the rivalries. They don’t want to see the regular season rivalries get hurt. Basketball’s a tournament sport and football, college football, is not. They don’t want to turn college football into anything that’s like the NFL. I don’t foresee a major playoff unless most of the presidents change their mind.
I wonder what Brand considers a “major playoff” to be, but still, that sounds like he senses a great deal of resistance to something more elaborate that what we have now.
(h/t The Wizard of Odds)
If you like half-assed speculation about potential coaching changes, here’s your guy.
If you’ve read my previous posts on the topic, you’re aware that these are the statistical benchmarks that Georgia achieved in the three years it went to the SECCG under Mark Richt (’02, ’03 and ’05):
I’m keeping track of the Dawgs’ progress in each of these statistical categories in 2007. Here’s where Georgia stands in these categories right now:
A mixed bag, to say the least. Given some of the offenses in the SEC this year, meeting the goals of #5 and #6 is starting to look like it may be a tall order.
The big story so far this week is that, for the first time since 2001, Georgia has closed its practice to outsiders.
Coming so close on the heels of the Patriots cheating story in the NFL, given that Saban has prior links to Belichick, and that Miami was accused of cheating while Saban coached there, it’s been natural for the press to try to play this decision as the result of Richt being concerned that the ‘Bama staff may be guilty of trying to spy on Georgia practices.
Hence, the “P” word has reared its head.
The thing is, though, reading between the lines of this AJ-C story, it sounds as though the Georgia staff is reacting more to what it felt went on in the South Carolina game than to what Saban might be up to. Ching agrees.
Regardless of the motivation, since there’s no concrete evidence, the decision to close practice does come off a little strangely. But I’ve got to say that if you read this Gregg Easterbrook column at ESPN.com about the extent to which the Patriots/Belichick are accused of cheating, you’ll come off feeling that a little paranoia might not be such a bad thing.