There’s something a bit creepy about this.
“I’m going to pray that [Tebow] is true to his faith because if he falls and gets caught up in some kind of scandal it will be bad for Christianity,” Brown said.
Say what you will, the money folks are awfully kind to the Dawgs this week.
Rank Team Rating Previous Notes 1 Oklahoma 112.9 2 Leap past Horned Frogs to the top. 2 Southern Cal 112.2 1 Trojans dug a hole against Beavers. 3 Missouri 109.9 4 Let Big 12 play begin… Huskers up first. 4 Texas 109.0 6 Razor sharp win over Arkansas. 5 Florida 108.9 3 Rebels played with a cause. 6 Penn State 107.9 7 Nittany Lions finally getting deserved respect. 7 Alabama 107.5 17 Saban really has Tide rolling now. 8 Georgia 106.9 5 Bulldogs buried at home. 9 Texas Tech 106.8 9 Red Raiders get a break before Big 12. 10 Ohio State 106.2 8 Buckeyes putting pieces back together. 11 LSU 106.0 10 Tigers getting better with experience. 12 Brigham Young 105.6 11 BCS Buster…Three weeks to battle at TCU. 13 Kansas 104.8 12 Cyclones another pushover. 13 California 104.8 12 Bears ram tough against CSU. 15 South Florida 103.7 17 Title shot not out of the question. 16 Oklahoma State 103.6 19 Talented Cowboys under the radar. 17 Wisconsin 102.6 14 Big 2nd half flop in “Big House”. 17 Texas Christian 102.6 15 Had to lose ‘Sooner’ or later. 19 West Virginia 102.5 22 Finally showed signs of life. 20 Utah 102.4 20 Will Oregon State have anything left? 20 Auburn 102.4 21 Found a way to win over Vols. 22 Clemson 102.0 15 Jekyll and Hyde team. 23 Virginia Tech 101.8 25 Hokies hand Huskers home loss. 24 Arizona 101.0 25 Host Huskies next. 24 Tulsa 101.0 NR Averaging 55 points per game. 26 Michigan State 100.5 30 Spartans playing well. 26 Cincinnati 100.5 23 A win is a win…slipped past Zips. 28 South Carolina 100.4 28 Shut down weak UAB offense. 29 Boston College 100.1 NR Schedule only gets tougher 30 Boise State 100.0 NR Broncos move up sitting at home idle.
That’s a huge jump for ‘Bama, so even though we think the Tide should be higher, it’s going in the right direction. But how do you explain LSU at #11, behind Ohio State and Florida, for example? And it’s still a bit of a puzzler to see Kansas ahead of South Florida.
At least Notre Dame isn’t getting any consideration.
And I’m not sure if it’s a mistake or an editorial comment, but at the link Tennessee gets listed as one of the teams that dropped out of the top 30 – twice.
I sucked it up last night and watched a replay of the rest of the Alabama game. I know there are a lot of people that found reasons from what happened in the second half to be somewhat optimistic and upbeat about how the game played out. I’m not one of them.
Sure, there was that nice stretch in the third and fourth quarters when ‘Bama lost a little direction and focus and the Dawgs were able to narrow the gap to 31-17. But then came what I thought was the most impressive drive of the game. With all the energy and excitement in the stadium that the home team was feeding off of, here’s how the Tide responded:
Alabama at 14:41 ALA GA 1st and 10 at ALA 34 Glen Coffee rush for 4 yards to the Alab 38. 31 17 2nd and 6 at ALA 38 John Parker Wilson pass complete to Julio Jones for 15 yards to the Geo 47 for a 1ST down. 1st and 10 at GA 47 Glen Coffee rush for 5 yards to the Geo 42. 2nd and 5 at GA 42 John Parker Wilson pass complete to Roy Upchurch for 22 yards to the Geo 20 for a 1ST down. 1st and 10 at GA 20 John Parker Wilson rush for 1 yard to the Geo 19. 2nd and 9 at GA 19 Glen Coffee rush for 1 yard to the Geo 18. 3rd and 8 at GA 18 Timeout GEORGIA, clock 10:34. 3rd and 8 at GA 18 Roy Upchurch rush for 3 yards to the Geo 15. 4th and 5 at GA 15 Leigh Tiffin 32 yard field goal GOOD. 34 17 Leigh Tiffin kickoff for 70 yards returned by Ramarcus Brown for 31 yards to the Geo 31. DRIVE TOTALS: Alab drive: 8 plays 51 yards, 04:56 Alab FG
That’s what very good teams do. Five minutes off the clock and the game killing score meant that it was all over. And if you have the stomach to watch, go back and look at that screen pass in the middle of the drive. It’s textbook. In particular, check out Andre Smith who has the athleticism to get out and take on Curran and the strength to lock him out of the play. You’ll see why this time next year Mr. Smith will be a rich young man.
The game falls apart from there. Georgia does manage to tack on a couple of late scores to make things look closer on the scoreboard and in the stats…
Team Stat Comparison 1st Downs 21 18 3rd down efficiency 4-10 4-13 4th down efficiency 0-0 2-3 Total Yards 334 324 Passing 205 274 Comp-Att 13-16 24-43 Yards per pass 12.8 6.4 Rushing 129 50 Rushing Attempts 45 16 Yards per rush 2.9 3.1 Penalties 2-9 10-81 Turnovers 1 2 Fumbles lost 1 1 Interceptions thrown 0 1 Possession 35:46 24:14
… than they really were. Skip the yardage totals. The tale for this game was told in Wilson’s completion ratio, the penalty numbers and the time of possession and that tale was that Alabama was able to do what its coaches planned and that Georgia managed to make things worse with mistakes.
One last observation – the new clock rules make it almost impossible to mount a second half comeback from a serious deficit. If it hadn’t been for Miller’s punt return, Georgia never would have had a chance. The problem was, as Blackledge noted, that there’s no margin for error. Georgia got three straight three and outs on defense, a blocked punt and a 92-yard punt return and still had to maintain that pace for two more touchdowns just to get back to even. That’s a tall order for any team, let alone one that had injury problems.
First off, again, let me say how much I appreciate everyone’s interest in this. I wound up with 59 ballots being cast, which looks like it’s enough to generate a respectable number of schools receiving votes.
I don’t want to read too much into the dry run votes, because it’s impossible to say if everyone was completely serious with the ballots, although I must say that I didn’t see a single vote cast that I thought was truly off the wall. So while I didn’t tally the voting, I did note that twenty two schools received votes from you.
Including me, there are sixty voters in the Mumme Poll. Some of us have more than one school affiliation. Here’s how that broke down:
And, yes, to answer the obvious question, judging from the ballots cast, there is going to be an issue with Georgia bias. Let’s just say there’s a little disconnect between the negative comments about the ‘Bama game that I’ve seen here and on other sites and people’s votes for Georgia as a top twelve team. I suspect that no other team that got owned the way Georgia did Saturday night would show up on every voter’s ballot. I hope that this is something that will wash out over the course of the season, but it’s definitely something to keep an eye on.
Anyway, now that your votes will be for real, I’m looking forward to watching this play out. There are no Sunday games this week, so ballots should be turned in between 9:00 AM Sunday and 9:00 PM Monday. I’ll post the results on Tuesday.
Danny, I understand why that game Saturday night could drive a man to drink.
Last night, I did something that I know I would never have done but for this blog. I made myself sit down and watch a replay of the first half of the ‘Bama game. I’m not going to bore anyone with a detailed breakdown of what went wrong (besides, I promised I wouldn’t do that), but I did find that most of my general impressions of what happened along the way to that 31-0 debacle sitting in the stands were confirmed on the tube, so I thought I’d share some.
First of all, Saban and his staff did a superlative job of scouting Georgia and drawing up a game plan that took advantage of certain tendencies they anticipated they would see in the game. On offense, that meant throwing on early downs expecting that Georgia would be defending the run and playing a lot of soft zone in the secondary. On defense, Alabama’s priorities were to clog the line to stuff the run and deny Stafford the deep ball. All of those bets paid off handsomely.
To make matters worse, Georgia’s defense lost Ellerbe early and seemed to have some problems at key times with communication and getting situated properly. A couple of times Wilson completed passes to teammates who were not being covered. Add in the lopsided time of possession and the stupid penalties and it’s fairly easy to see why ‘Bama was able to dominate the scoreboard and the stats like this:
The story on offense that made matters worse was that it was clear from the get go that, just like in last year’s South Carolina game, neither Bobo nor Stafford trusted the offensive line, which in turn affected their decision making. Bobo wouldn’t commit to running the football and Matt looked skittish throwing the ball, even though his o-line gave him decent pass protection in the first half. Neither was patient about taking what ‘Bama was giving on defense – and there were things, like the slant pass, that were there in the first half. Giving Moreno so few chances to run the ball played into Saban’s hands, as well.
Don’t forget, those of you that haven’t e-mailed your ballots to me at firstname.lastname@example.org have until 9:00 PM tonight to do so.
From today’s Department of Irony comes the SEC scoring stats:
Yep, that’s Alabama, running a traditional power running/play action passing offense that’s currently leading the SEC in scoring at 37 point per game.
And that’s Auburn, which just ditched a traditional power running/play action passing offense in favor of the current flavor of the month spread option attack, showing up in tenth by scoring roughly half the amount of points per game that ‘Bama is currently racking up.
The offensive display put on in the second half of the Auburn-Tennessee game was one of the most putrid things I’ve seen since… well, since the Auburn-Mississippi State game. I think you’d have to say at this point that the Tony Franklin experiment isn’t exactly going swimmingly so far.
Presumably you guys know the general drill for this. I’m tracking seven statistical categories that the Dawgs excelled in during the seasons they appeared in the SECCG under Richt. Those are as follows:
And here’s how things currently stack up for Georgia in the SEC statistical rankings.
As you can see, its standings took a bit of a hit, which isn’t surprising considering what happened Saturday night. Overall, though, there’s nothing developing that can’t be shored up at this point.
Don’t forget to turn your ballots in between now and Monday at 9:00 PM.
E-mail your ballot to email@example.com.