Daily Archives: July 16, 2009

Nobody knows who the third best quarterback in the SEC is today.

The SEC Coaches Preseason All-SEC team is announced, and to what should be no great surprise, Florida, LSU, Alabama and Georgia have the most selections.

I’ve got no idea why Julio Jones is a unanimous pick while A.J. Green isn’t, but I guess that makes me even with the coaches, who, in flailing around with their quarterback votes after Tebow and Snead, obviously have no idea about the next best candidate.  They came up with this tie for third-team:  Stephen Garcia and Mike Hartline.

That’s a sad thing when Wally Hall’s list makes more sense.

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Filed under SEC Football

“Ma, it’s that guy who says he’s the quarterback from Miami on the phone again!”

For some reason, I laughed my ass off reading this:

For the Miami football season-ticket holders still wondering about Tuesday-night phone calls: Yes, that was really Jacory Harris.

The Hurricanes’ starting quarterback and other teammates called season-ticket holders to thank them for their support and also to invite them to next Saturday’s Canes Fest event.

The reactions they got from fans ranged from disbelief to dismissal.

Harris, speaking at the Edgerrin James Room on the UM campus Wednesday, said two or three fans nearly hung up and then quizzed him to see if he was really the Hurricanes’ signal-caller.

‘[One fan] asked me, `How many players from Northwestern [High] went to the University of Miami?’ ” Harris said. ‘I was like, `Eight.’ And he was like, ‘Oh, I like how fast you answered that. It might be you.’ ”

So much for being considerate to the fan base in tough times.  I guess they were waiting for Harris to start making his sales pitch for time shares.

All of which reminds of my favorite moment on Seinfeld:

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Filed under Chivalry Is Dead

Thursday morning buffet

The chafing dishes are steaming and ready to go…

  • Maybe Tommy Bowden can explain why he thinks it’s necessary to chew over his departure from Clemmins in public now, because I can’t think of a single good reason for it.
  • Elkon upbraids Mark Bradley’s “best coaches” post here.  What I keep wondering when I see these lists – if Brian Kelly is as good a head coach as many people think he is, why didn’t Tennessee take a serious look at him?
  • Jerry is right about this.  If Tyrik Rollison is the best quarterback Chizik’s got, he’d be foolish not to play him, given what the rest of the roster of QBs Auburn’s got to deploy looks like.  Will there be some short term liabilities?  Sure, but it’s not as if the Tigers are a likely bet to be playing in Atlanta this year anyway.
  • The shocking part of this is not that it happened, but how clumsy the high school appears to be about how it went about its business.
  • Rest assured, if there’s one website I won’t ever link to, it’s this one.

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Filed under Academics? Academics., College Football, Gene Chizik Is The Chiznit, Tim Tebow: Rock Star, Tommy Bowden: Male Model

Crash the party.

Heisman Pundit’s post exploring the possibility of Max Hall as a darkhorse Heisman candidate raises a bigger question in my mind in light of the recent BCS/playoff debate:  if BYU somehow runs the table this season, won’t it be a strong contender for a slot in the BCS title game?

Look at the schedule.  The Cougars would be 12-0 with wins over Oklahoma, FSU, TCU and Utah.  Yeah, they do play the rest of the Mountain West, but at least there isn’t a single 1-AA school on the slate.

Sure, it’s something of a longshot, but if you figure that the rest of the D-1 landscape winds up looking like it has the past two seasons, an undefeated BYU squad would make for an interesting national discussion about the postseason, don’t you think?

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Filed under BCS/Playoffs

Stewart Mandel has made me his Pavlov’s dog.

It’s a matter of instinct, it’s a matter of conditioning,
It’s a matter of fact.
You can call me Pavlov’s dog.
Ring a bell and I’ll salivate. How’d you like that?

– “Brian Wilson”, Barenaked Ladies

I confess.  I can’t help it – Mandel posts something and I’ve got to take a look, to wade through the banal observations in the hopes of striking gold with some point he makes that defies logic or common sense.

Fortunately, he tends not to disappoint.

And there’s pressure, too, because Michael Elkon has become as sadly conditioned as I am.  It’s become a race to see who’s first with the mockery.   So in all fairness, you should probably check out his latest, um, reaction to Mandel’s piece from yesterday before reading further, since he did beat me out of the gate.  Plus, it’s a tasty savaging.

I did have a couple of thoughts of my own to add, though, as Michael’s gone with more of a macro approach to his ridicule while I want to smack some specific points Mandel raised in his mailbag.

First of all, the idea that the counter-cyclical nature of college offenses is something that just popped into Mandel’s head is either laughable – it’s a concept that’s been openly and intelligently discussed in a number of blogs from Heisman Pundit to Matt Hinton’s old Sunday Morning Quarterback site – or an indication of how little Sports Illustrated’s college football sage actually thinks about the sport he’s responsible for covering.  (Although, to be fair, Mandel does have to spend a fair amount of time pondering which B-list starlet he and his faithful readers are going to drool over in his mailbag each season.)

But the dumb part that really caught my eye with his analysis of the spread and pro-set offenses was this – on the one hand he notes that there are fewer programs that run “traditional” offenses these days because

… there are only a handful of programs fit to run that type of offense. There’s a reason teams like USC, LSU, Georgia and Ohio State continue to be successful with traditional offenses: They have the best players. To run a productive, I-formation offense, a team needs big, bulky linemen, a true tight end, a couple of power runners and, preferably, a 6-foot-5 drop-back quarterback — all of which are becoming increasingly scarce at the high-school level…

but then goes on to pose the musical question

What, then, can a mid-level team do now to gain back that “edge?” Why not go back to a power offense?

With whose players?  I mean, if mid-level programs got away from I-formation football because getting the proper personnel to run it successfully was a hopeless task, what’s changed exactly?

Mandel doesn’t say, of course.  And the example he chooses to illustrate his point – “Keep an eye on Bobby Petrino at Arkansas” – isn’t exactly what most folks from Montana would call a mid-level school.  (Nor is Petrino being paid like a mid-level coach, for that matter.)   Further, it’s not the case that Petrino is changing his offense out of contrarian concerns, or out of any concerns at all; he’s doing the same stuff at Arkansas he was running at Louisville.

A stronger argument would be one that asserts that the schools who have continued to run pro-set offenses may find themselves in an even stronger position to exploit defenses that are constructed to stop the spread because of personnel mismatches.  But that’s not Mandel’s point.

Until next time… it’s back to the Crush, Stewart.

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Filed under Media Punditry/Foibles, Strategery And Mechanics, The Blogosphere