Daily Archives: August 13, 2009

It’s not that we’re mediocre. It’s that the other guys are really good.

One of the recurring themes we’ve seen as to why Georgia will survive the departures of Stafford and Moreno just fine, thank you, is that we’ve-got-’em-where-we-want-’em rationale of lowered expectations and under the radar flying that’s come from the players and coaches on a fairly regular basis this offseason.

Well, they’re not alone with the pop psychology.  It’s alive and well at Oklahoma State, too. The words are a little different, but the melody is similar.

“The only thing I’ve heard since I came back to Oklahoma State is that we can’t play defense,” Young said. “I tell people to look at Oklahoma and Texas, who have the best players in college football, and their statistics aren’t much different than our stats.”

Young inherits an OSU defense that ranked 93rd in the country in total defense last season, allowing 405.5 yards per game. Texas was the highest-ranked defense in the Big 12 (and 51st nationally) in 2008, allowing 342.9 yards per game. Oklahoma was third-best among Big 12 teams (and 68th nationally), yielding a 367.7-yard average.

“I think it’s more the spread offenses and the great quarterbacks,” Young said. “Look at the quarterbacks in the Big 12. If you miss a tackle in the open field now, it could be an 80-yard gain, instead of an 8-yard gain like it used to be.”

In other words, what he’s saying is that it’s not that our defense was bad.  It’s those incredible offenses we faced week after week that made it look bad.  Of course, I’m wondering what it would take for Young to acknowledge a big statistical difference between teams, given that I find the range of fifty first to ninety third to be a helluva lot larger than he does.  (Tulsa, which played at a lightning pace on offense in a conference that was offensive minded with lesser athletes than those suiting up in Stillwater, still managed to finish almost twenty slots higher in total defense than OSU did last year.)

I’m not trying to pick on Young here – you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do to get your players mentally ready.  I just think it’s good to remember that the kids in red and black won’t be the only ones on the field come September 5th with something to prove to themselves.



Filed under Georgia Football

I have seen the future, and its name is Tebow.



Filed under The Blogosphere, Tim Tebow: Rock Star

Kiffin watch: great moments in staff management

You think Pete Carroll would like a mulligan on this?

In the new book “Always Compete,” Steve Bisheff gets both Carroll and UCLA offensive coordinator Norm Chow to confirm that Chow left USC in 2005 because Carroll took away Chow’s play-calling duties to keep Lane Kiffin and newly rehired Steve Sarkisian happy. “Because of job opportunities some of our young guys had elsewhere, we had to do something to keep them,” Carroll said. USC hasn’t finished No. 1 since Chow left.

I’ll say one thing about Junior – I don’t know if he really can coach, but he’s sure good at convincing the guys making the hiring decisions that he can.

And I wonder what will be going through Norm Chow’s head during UCLA’s opener at Tennessee.


Filed under Don't Mess With Lane Kiffin

Paper tigers and gored oxen

While we’re faced with the current distraction of watching some of our fellow citizens losing their minds at those health care town hall meetings (I’m partial to the folks who are obvious Medicare recipients getting red-faced about socialized medicine, but I digress), it’s easy to forget the political theater from earlier this year that captured our hearts and minds.


Rep. Joe Barton had a plane to catch, but he wanted to give college football officials a warning before leaving the highly publicized hearing.

Peering down from the podium, the Republican said in his Texas twang that unless the officials took action toward a playoff system in two months, Congress would likely move on his legislation aimed at forcing their hand.

How’s that coming along, Joe?

More than three months have passed, and Barton’s bill hasn’t moved. Such is the way with college football and Congress.

Oh.  But Barton’s not giving up that easily, my friends.

Barton insisted in a telephone interview that there’s a good chance his bill will pass the House this year.

“The key is finding a place on the agenda” in a year crowded with high-profile issues, he said. “We’ll keep plugging away.”

It’s not just that Congress’ plate is filled right now with a few matters.  It’s also that guys like Barton and Hatch aren’t the only ones with skin in the game, politically speaking.

It seems unlikely Congress will take the initiative. To figure out why, just look at a map of the United States.

The current college bowl system features a championship game between the two top teams in the BCS standings, based on two polls and six computer rankings. After the title game, eight other schools fill in the remaining slots for Orange, Sugar, Fiesta and Rose bowls.

Under the BCS, six conferences get automatic bids – the ACC, Big East, Big 12, Big Ten, Pac-10 and SEC, in states from Massachusetts to Florida to California to Washington to Illinois. Those conference receive far more money than the conferences that don’t get automatic bids.

“There are just too many senators and congressmen who represent districts where major BCS schools have a very dominant influence,” said Gary Roberts, dean of the Indiana University School of Law-Indianapolis and an expert on sports law.

“So you’re not going to get any senators from Louisiana or Alabama or Florida or Georgia or Tennessee or Ohio – those are all states with major state universities that are major BCS powerhouses.”

Leave it to that paragon of the principled stance, Chuck Schumer, to say that he’s in favor of a playoff – if:

“the one caveat is I have [a New York school] Syracuse, which benefits from the funding situation because the Big East gets in. You’d have to preserve that.”

Maybe they should consider having some town hall meetings on this.


Filed under BCS/Playoffs, Political Wankery

Thursday morning buffet

Feel free to pick and choose, folks.

  • Sticks and stones may break his bones, but haters will never hurt the GPOOE™.
  • Yes, I’d say that going from a $15,000 application fee to $1 million is “substantial”.
  • Is Charlie Strong underpaid?
  • Like most, I’m not a big fan of the SEC’s new media protocol, but this post strikes me as a wee bit over the top.
  • Which surprises you more here – #1 or #6?  (By the way, if CFN’s assessment here is correct, the game in Stillwater won’t be close.)
  • Jon Solomon looks at the jockeying going on amongst the bowls with tie-ins to the SEC.  Surprise:  money will be involved in the final decision.
  • Even in the wake of this, nobody’s talking about Mitch Mustain.


Filed under College Football, Gators, Gators..., Georgia Football, It's Just Bidness, Media Punditry/Foibles, SEC Football, The Blogosphere, The NCAA, Tim Tebow: Rock Star