Tuesday, August 26

more ESPN preseason

Two days to kickoff. With nothing but college football on the mind, why not jot some notes down about whatever random stuff I'm reading...

The Herbie Awards

Best QBs: Classic Dropback Style
1. Matt Stafford, Georgia
2. Sam Bradford, Oklahoma
3. Curtis Painter, Purdue
4. Nate Davis, Ball State
5. Willie Tuitama, Arizona

Best QBs: New Spread Style
1. Tim Tebow, Florida
2. Chase Daniel, Missouri
3. Pat White, West Virginia
4. Matt Grothe, South Florida
5. Jake Locker, Washington
6. Dan LeFevour, Central Michigan

It's a list of fine quarterbacks, but... anything missing? The almost sure-lock to be the NCAA's passing leader, perhaps? Graham Harrell? He's no more of a "system" QB than Painter or every QB in the second list save for Grothe. Despite Texas Tech running a version of the spread, I'd call him a dropback QB, and place him in the top 3 of that list.

QBs: "What a Difference a Year Makes"
1. Mark Sanchez, Southern California
2. Todd Boeckman, Ohio State
3. Jimmy Clausen, Notre Dame
4. Jonathan Crompton, Tennessee
5. Cullen Harper, Clemson
6. Kevin Riley, Cal

Frankly, you're fooling yourself if you think Boeckman, Claussen, or Harper will have better seasons this time around. Actually it'd be tough for Boeckman to improve much statistically, since OSU spent most of last season annihilating teams who don't actually field defensive (or offensive) units.

Don't Get Enough Respect

Entire Wake Forest football team, including head coach Jim Grobe

You've got to be joking. What is there to respect? UConn, Navy, and Florida State were the only teams with a winning record Wake beat last season. Yes you read that correctly, Florida State won 7 out of 13 games last season. A-C-C! In their "great" 2006 season, that list was Boston College, Florida State, Maryland, and Reggie Ball. Congratulations, you play in a conference where anyone the caliber of Texas A&M can win 10 games.

Nick Reed, DE, Oregon
Stafon Johnson, RB, Southern California

Brian Hartline, WR, Ohio State

Okay, playing for Ohio State does not make you good. Reminds me of a writeup I did for the OSU vs Florida game... I talked about Ginn and Holmes as standout receivers, but that Florida had a deeper receiving corps. A Buckeye fan suggests 'don't forget (goes on to list all remaining receivers on OSU depth chart).' Yeah, and Ryan Hamby too, right? I didn't forget them, they're just not great receivers. They're solid but nothing standout. These are those same guys. OSU has a fantastic runningback and offensive line. Because teams have to put 9 in the box to stop them, they occasionally complete passes. For that matter, why is Robiskie listed as the #4 receiver in the country?

Chris Brown, RB, Oklahoma

Again, what has he ever done? Come in and mucked up the offense. Averaged a full 2 ypc less than Allen Patrick and Demarco Murray. 3.9 ypc isn't that great when the two guys above you and the guy below you in total carries all average over 5.8.

Sean Weatherspoon, LB, Missouri
Brian Johnson, QB, Utah

"Fearless" Predictions for 2008

Not so much criticism as much as a summary:
* 4 of the 12 sportswriters/analysts are predicting an Oklahoma vs Ohio State BCS championship. (split 2-2 on who wins) OU and OSU have combined to lose the championship following the 2003, 2004, 2006, and 2007 seasons... so this would guarantee them going five for six.
* 9 of the 12 think that the USC/Ohio State winner goes to the big game (6 OSU, 3 USC)
* 7 of the 12 think the SEC champion goes (5 UGA, 2 Florida)
* 7 of the 12 think Oklahoma goes
* Only one other school was even picked to go in anybody's predictions: Missouri, picked to win over USC by Bruce Feldman.

Other patterns/oddities:
* 5 believe that North Carolina wins their division. Not happening.
* One guy, Jim Donnan, believes Wake Forest will win their division. Either he believes Jeff Bowden will take a much more active role in advising his brother, or he's overrating Wake.
* Ohio State, Missouri, Oklahoma, and USC are picked to win their divisions/conferences across the board. 10 of the 12 think OU beats Missouri.
* Despite delusions of UNC rising to the top of their division, Clemson and Va Tech are the only teams picked to actually win the ACC. (9 Clemson, 3 Va Tech)
* Each SEC division has two teams who get picked to win it (Georgia/Florida, Auburn/LSU). But the East team is picked to win every time. (7 Florida, 5 Georgia)
* Of the "Big 6" conferences, only the Big East has three or more teams picked to win their whole conference. (3 Pitt, 3 USF, 6 WVU)

No real point here...