Daily Archives: December 27, 2007

Sugar Bowl punditry

There are a couple of Sugar Bowl previews up at CFN and ESPN for your perusal.  There’s nothing particularly earth shattering in either – in case you didn’t know, look for Hawaii to throw the ball and for Georgia to run the ball – but both pieces do focus on one particular matchup that should be interesting to watch.

From Fiutak at CFN:

Looking to bottle things up in the middle is 6-0, 302-pound bowling ball Michael Lafale, who’s been the anchor of the Hawaii line since moving over from the offensive side a few years ago. While not an interior pass rusher, he’s the one who needs to be shoved around to make the Georgia running game go. If he’s handled by just one lineman, there will be big problems for the Warrior linebackers. If he can consistently take on two blockers, Hawaii’s defense will have its moments.

And here’s what Scouts, Inc. has to say over at ESPN:

Key individual matchup

Hawaii DT Michael Lafaele vs. OC Fernando Velasco
Lafaele anchors the Warrior defense and he can be tough to move at 302 pounds, but he will struggle to hold his ground working against Velasco. Velasco has adequate quickness, he takes sound angles to his blocks and he shows above-average lower body strength once in position. If Velasco is able to handle Lafaele by himself, it will make it easier for the guards to release up to the second level and wall off the linebackers, giving RBs Moreno and Brown big lanes to run through. In addition, Lafaele shouldn’t have much success getting to QB Stafford. Velasco gets adequate knee bend in his pass set, and he rarely gives ground to bull rushers. While Velasco lacks an explosive first, Lafaele isn’t quite quick enough to exploit this weakness.

Note that both previews pick Georgia to cover the spread.  Note also that somebody can’t spell the Hawaii DT’s name correctly.  (The Honolulu paper indicates that it’s CFN’s screwup.)

On another front, we haven’t seen a Tom Dienhart “what I’m hearing about coaches” link in a while, so here’s a timely one.

A source close to the SMU situation tells me Hawaii coach June Jones is the main target. He already has had a clandestine interview for the job.

SMU has yet to make a move on former Texas A&M coach Dennis Franchione and ex-Southern Miss coach Jeff Bowers, among others, even though both have been available. Why? Because SMU is waiting on Jones to finish the Warriors’ trip to the Sugar Bowl, where unbeaten Hawaii will play Georgia.

Is it true?  With Dienhart, who knows?  Brennan is gone after the Sugar Bowl and Jones’ contract with Hawaii is up.  Could this be a distraction?  It couldn’t hurt if it were.

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Filed under BCS/Playoffs, Georgia Football, Media Punditry/Foibles

Here come the robots, y’all.

If you’re Fox Sports, the BCS has been berry, berry good to you.

… With four post-New Year’s games on its schedule, including the college football national championship game on Jan. 7 between LSU and Ohio St. as well as broadcasts of the Sugar, Fiesta and Orange Bowls on the docket, Fox has sold out its entire inventory for the slate of games, despite hefty increases on pricing. For the Sugar, Fiesta and Orange Bowls, the network priced each 30-second spot at $500,000 this year. The BCS National Championship game drew prices of $950,000, up from last year’s prices of around $800,000.

And so now you start looking for new worlds to conquer.

With rights to leagues such as the heavyweight Southeastern Conference coming available for the 2009 season, Mr. Goren said Fox is looking for opportunities to make college football a part of the network’s long-term plans. One key to that could be with the SEC, which enters the final year of its deal with CBS with the 2008 season.

“We would love to get a regular-season package, and I believe we could do a lot with it,” Mr. Goren said. “We talked about having a regular season for years, but unfortunately a lot of those deals don’t come on the market very often. That’s a hell of a testament to the health of college football in this country.”

SEC football and those stupid Fox graphics… be still, my heart.

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UPDATE: On a related note, at least Georgia fans have some attractive options if we don’t want to listen to the Fox broadcast crew for the Sugar Bowl. Larry Munson is going on the road and will handle the play by play duties as only he can. And ESPN Radio is giving us Uncle Ron.

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UPDATE #2:  Scratch Munson from the Sugar Bowl.  Oh, well… at least we’ve still got Franklin as an alternative.

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Filed under Georgia Football, It's Just Bidness, SEC Football