Tuesday, December 12, 2017

The MMQ - Tuesday Edition

Once Again, Monday Business Gets In The Way..

Of the really important stuff.  Like the MMQ.

But, you can always do a Tuesday Edition, and here it is.   I’ll probably post Friday again with the Bowl Bracket. 

The Michigan Basketball Season Just Stayed Interesting

If you didn’t see it (shame on you for not tuning in), the Michigan Men’s Hoopsters just kept the season interesting.   Coming back from a 15-point deficit on Saturday to take the Bruins to OT in a Crisler Classic, the outcome was a lot better than what anyone anticipated with 10 minutes and change left. 

What was looking like another Columbus debacle finally turned in Michigan’s favor after they overcame yet ANOTHER abysmal shooting performance.  I’m really HOPING this current level/performance regarding shooting is an anomaly (and there’s a lot of data out there on Michigan that suggests that) and not the season’s norm.  If Michigan collectively can get back in the groove, everything should be fine. 

It would appear that Zavier Simpson is emerging as the Trey Burke  - Derrick Walton replacement as the much needed take charge PG.  Beilein’s offense needs to have a take charge guy, and Simpson did exactly that late in the game against UCLA.  He ignited the offense and got everyone going on defense as well. And Matthews needs to learn HOW TO MAKE A FREE THROW! 

Fergodsakes…

Michigan plays again tonight at Texas, which would also be a nice win to have.  Texas has lost to two respectable games to Gonzaga and Duke, and both losses were on the road.  They haven’t really played anyone else, so it’s difficult to gauge how good they actually are. 

Game Info:
Time:  9:00
TV:   ESPN2

Regardless, winning in Austin would be a resume builder as the next three non-con games aren’t even in the RPI top 150

I’m not sure Texas will finish in the RPI top 100, but beat them never the less….

Patterson Is Coming

Everyone seems to believe that Shea Patterson is coming.  Several Ole Miss blogs are calling it as “Already Done” even though I won’t believe it until he’s actually on campus and in a dorm room

I’m a little ticked off at everyone getting on Harbaugh for not “Sticking with his guys”.  First, Patterson was recruited by Michigan 3 years ago, and he was recruited hard.  Part of Patterson going to Ole Miss is what landed Michigan Peters and McCaffery.
I don’t think either one of those guys would transfer at this point and I also don’t think Patterson is a “lock” for starting QB.  Let’s give Peters another game and see what comes of the transfers.  I watched Patterson’s highlight reel again and got a few queasy feelings on some of the throws he was making.  He’ll get himself out of jams, but he’s going to need to develop and mature. 

Patterson’s center in High School (the IMG academy) Cesar Ruiz, plays for Michigan and had nothing but praise for his former Team mate:

“I think he’d be a good fit in anybody’s program,” Ruiz said. “He a great quarterback.”
Patterson is a “cool dude” according to Ruiz and easy to get along with. He also described him as a “funny, goofy dude.” Patterson did tell The Detroit News he was having a good time on his visit.
On whether or not he’ll be immediately eligible?  Patterson hired the same lawyer that Houston Nutt went after OIe Miss with.  Think the NCAA is going to want to stand out and say that Hugh Freeze DIDN’T Lie about the seriousness of the violations when he was recruiting dudes?  My guess is the one year of sitting out is waived and Patterson will be eligible.


With Patterson, You Get Some Other Dudes, Too…
It seems that when you get Patterson, you get another couple of dudes that could help with depth at certain positions.  Safety Deontay Anderson and receiver Van Jefferson are also looking at taking Michigan up on a transfer.  Jefferson would be a nice add to the receiver corps on Michigan’s squad and is a favorite target of Patterson.  Two seasons and he’s averaged 45 catches and right around 500 yards/season.   Anderson’s bio for 2016 was about what you’d expect for a safety. 
Grading The Hires
Now that the Coaching Carousel has slowed down to almost a complete stop, I thought it might be interesting to note which hires were grand-slams and which ones had us all shaking our heads. 
The “A-List”
Chip Kelly – UCLA.  This hire was about as good as you could hope to do.  It was a bit of a surprise when Chip turned down Florida, but according to everyone that knows Chip, he doesn’t like politics and just wants to coach.  In fact, Kelly apparently do a lot of recruiting, either.  So he’s going to need some good assistants.  Let’s watch and see who he gets.
Taggart – FSU.  This was an unfortunate fall-out from the Jimbo Fisher fiasco.  I don’t think Taggart was planning a “One and Done” at Oregon, but the FSU job makes a lot of sense for Taggart who’s a Florida kid from Bradenton. 
Mullen – Gatorland.  In my opinion, this guy should have been #1 on the list.  Mullen coached at Florida, he GETS Florida, and he I think he’ll be a great fit at Florida.  Chasing Kelly and Frost just didn’t make sense for Gatorland. 
Frost – Nebraska.  This was another very good hire and we’ll see how it works out in Lincoln.  This has the same exact feel of “Harbaugh to Michigan” and I think Frost will be given plenty of time to make it work. 
The “I See What You Did There.  I Hope It Works Out For You” List
Jimbo Fisher – Texas A&M.  The more I think about and look at this hire, the more it has me shaking my head.  First, I get why A&M had to part ways with Sumlin.  But Fisher had a great thing going in Tallahassee and I think the fans mostly supported him.  He will be getting a little more cash than he was getting at FSU, but does that make sense for both parties?  The kicker here is A&M coughing up Harbaugh- Saban money for a guy that won a NC with Winston on his team.  I guess he needs to find another QB’s tail to ride and hope that it works.  How will A&M fans feel paying an extra $3M annually for 2 additional wins on average?  Assuming he can get to 9-10 per season in the SEC West?  Again, I’ll stand by my 50-50 chances I originally gave this hire. 
Moorehead – MSU.  I like this hire for MSU, but while Moorehead has proven himself on the offensive side of the ball, he needs to find a good D-Coordinator (and he plucked a defensive coach from PSU on his way out the door), so we’ll see.  I think the MSU job is a stepping stone position and if Moorehead proves himself, we’ll see him somewhere else in 3 years.
Chad Morris – Arkansas.  The former high-school and head coach at SMU did some good things, but does being the coach at SMU immediately qualify you for an SEC West gig?  Again, hope this works, but not holding my breath. 
Josh Heupel – UCF.  This seems to be a good hire on the surface and Huepel will have a full cupboard to work with.  However, if UCF finishes the season un-defeated with a win over Auburn, it’s going to be hard going next season when he loses his first game.  Not saying this was a bad hire, but you have to follow the much-loved Frost.  And that sucks…
The “I have NO FRIGGIN’ CLUE What You Were Thinking” List
Matt Luke – Ole Miss.  Ole Miss did what they had to do because there was no way anyone else was going to touch that job at this point. 
Herm Edwards – Arizona State.  Jeez.  From a shaky introduction press conference to some other stuff that’s come out of Herm’s mouth (like not knowing what a football “tight fit” game jersey looked like, it’s just looking like a really, REALLY bad hire.  If I was an ASU fan, I’m not sure I’d be reviewing my tix…
Pruitt – Tennessee.  This one puzzles me the more I look at it.  He’s longest tenure with any one team has been a little over 2 years.  He’s never been a head coach and has only been a DC for about 5 years.  I know that Tennessee had been through a lot of offers for a lot of guys that ended up saying no, so if this works, great. 
Mario Cristobal – Oregon.  In what last year looked like an act of brilliance by Oregon getting Taggart to leave USF, this one is a bit of a head scratcher.  I know the entire team signed a letter and gave it to the AD saying, “Keep Mario”.  But you’re now kind of letting the inmates run the asylum, which is never a good idea.  Again, I hope it works out for you. 
Etc.
The NCAA Has Never Had Control
Great article about the nutless NCAA. 

Friday, December 8, 2017

The FMQ Week #15 - Army vs. Navy

The Best Story You’ll Read Today!
Having lived an episode of this story when I used to visit the Nissan Assembly plant in Smyrna, Tennessee, in the middle 2000’s, this article brought a big ole smile to my face…
One of the funniest Tennessee comments if from OL player Teague:
Teague: Brian still can't see through the maize and blue and be objective on that subject. [Teague and Griese were teammates on the Broncos.] Brian's a great guy, but he's blinded by that ugly helmet.
My story: I accidentally (maybe) wore a Michigan Polo shirt to the Tennessee plant one day and an engineer I was working with literally handed me his lab/shop coat.  I said, “I didn’t know we were touring the plant today.”  His response: “We’re not.  But I’m afraid I’m gonna’ punch you if I have to look at you in that shirt!” 
Yep – Tennessee fans will never forget!!!
Coaching Carousel
Speaking of Tennessee, Fulmer has offered the HC job to Alabama’s Defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt.  Where’s the Torch and Pitchfork crowd in Knoxville, now???  
Background:  first of all, Tennessee and Bama HATE each other.  I mean, HATE.  Pruitt is a Bama kid born and raised, played for Bama and has coached at Bama.  This would be akin to Michigan hiring former suckeye linebacker Chris Spielman as head coach…
I can’t believe this would sit that well with ANYONE that’s wearing Volunteer Orange.
But hey, what do I know?  I guess they have faith and trust in Fulmer…The Coach they all hated and wanted fired in 2008.
Can We Fire Emmert NOW And PLEASE Make Jay Bilas Head of the NCAA???
In what I can only describe as the most idiotic thing yet to come out of the mouth of Emmert, he had this to say about Ball’s withdrawal from UCLA:


In case you hadn’t heard, Ball’s indefinite suspension for shoplifting prompted his dad to pull him out of the university.  Emmert’s response to that is above. 
What a tool…Can’t the University AD’s and President’s sign a petition to get him thrown out?  There are so many better options out there….
Here’s What the Street-Walkers and Strippers In Columbus Will Be Wearing on New Year’s Eve….
Cause nothing says I support my team like stripper stilletos!


Is Baker Mayfield The Best Ever?
Heard a couple of other tools on Sirius Radio debating whether or not we would be calling Baker Mayfield “The Best College Player Ever” after he wins the Heisman and potentially wins the NC.  Baker’s stats are off the charts (his passer rating right now is over 200) and he will have thrown for close to (or probably over with potentially two games left) 5,000 yards in one season.  Looky:

Impressive, I get that.  And there will probably be a new landslide record in the voting…
But college football is different now.  The offense that the Laters run let’s him put up numbers like that.  But he still has to execute and make the throws
First, to say that any ONE player is the best-ever is ignorant.  I don’t even know where I would start my list, but it’s almost impossible to determine.  A player can’t be great unless he’s surrounded by other great players.  Woodson would NOT have had the season he had in 1997 unless Weathers, Peterson, Taylor, Marcus Ray and Hendricks weren’t great, also.  Offenses would have just avoided him altogether and gone towards the weakness, which they tried to do, anyway. 
I started thinking about who’d be in my top 10 and that got to be difficult as well.  Then I thought, “What about just ranking Heisman trophy winners?”  So, with a little help from internet, I came up with this (My ranking is two-fold - Objective and Subjective:   stats and excitement factor, each considered equally plus if it carried over to the next level):
1.    Barry Sanders – hands down probably the best RB in all of college football and had an impressive 2,850 rushing yards and 44 TD’s.   Plus NFL follow-up He’s the top of my list.  It’s sad that the Lions never put the right players and a better defense together when they had Barry.
2.    Marcus Allen – 2.427 yards and 22 TD’s.  Still holds or shares 14 NCAA records…and Superbowl champ and NFL MVP.
3.    Desmond Howard23 Total TD’s and still holds 5 NCAA records.  And NFL stuff like “Super Bowl Champion”.  Plus, Heisman voting was 2nd LARGEST MARGIN of victory in the history of the trophy when he won.  (Now 3rd largest).   And there’s this, which was also a first
4.    Charles Woodson – First Ever Defensive Player to win the trophy and was a complete difference maker and while there aren’t stats to support it, I don’t know how you keep him out of any Top 10 Players of All Time list, especially when you consider what he continued to do in the NFL. And Yeah, this too:
5.    Tony Dorsett – 2,105 yards and 23 TD’s and NFL stuff…
6.    Cam Newton – ran for 20 TD’s and threw 28 TD’s and won the NC and was exciting to watch. 
7.    Reggie Bush – 2,218 yards rushing and 18 TD’s.  Always wanted to watch Bush play.
8.    Herschel Walker – 1,752 yards and 17 TD’s in the SEC. 
9.    Matt Leinart – Would have won the Heisman twice with the exception that Bush was on his team!!! 
10. Tim Tebow – Ran for 20 TD’s and threw for 20 TD’s.  First QB to ever pull that off.  But no NFL stuff.
So, where do I slide Mayfield in?  It’s difficult with the Running Backs mixed in because what they do is so different than what QB’s do.  I guess, based on statistics alone, I’d put him either right above Tim Tebow, but I’m allowed to move him around depending on what he does in the NFL. I really think I should have him below Desmond on the “Excitement” scale, just because you held your breath every time the ball got anywhere near Dez.  I don’t always feel that same excitement with Mayfield.   OF course, I could say he has to be below Woodson, too, and I may have Woodson too low on my rank.  This NFL ranking of Heisman guys has Woodson #1.  But I’m trying to rank the College performances…
Which is another discussion.  I’m not sure the “Mayfield Game” translates very well to the next level.  He’s short.   I know, I know.   “Drew Brees and Russell Wilson”.  And I’ve got Griffin, Manziel, Flute, Brady Quinn, and a whole lot of 6 foot-ish QB’s that played great college ball and flamed out in the pros.  It’s a different game. 
I guess we’ll see on that, won’t we?  And the NFL Scouts agree with me…Or I agree with them, I guess.
The MMPG
I won’t say it’s time to hit the panic button yet, but Michigan is kind of in “Must Win” mode with UCLA and Texas in the next two gamesAt 7-3, they desperately need these wins to have “resume” wins come Tourney time.  Right now, I don’t see this squad winning more than 9 games in the B1G, so these two games could be the ones that help get them off the bubble...  
Hurst Might Just “Sit This One Out”
Mo Hurst is debating whether or not to play in the Outback Bowl.  As a lock 1st round pick, again, he’s probably asking himself, “Why?”  Look what happened to Jake Butt (ACL injury in last year’s Orange Bowl) and has probably even texted him a couple of times.  I wouldn’t blame Hurst in the least if he wanted to take this one off.

THE FMQ
Jeez…That was a tough week.  The championships cost me money.  The PUSHES really suck and goes to show again how this can be a hard way to make a buck.


With only one game on the docket, I gotta make it count…
Army Vs. Navy (-3   O/U 46):  Crap.  I hate tight spreads.  Army has thrown the ball sparingly this season and in 4 games, didn’t throw the ball at all!  But they are sitting at 8-3 and looking to, uh, right the ship in the rivalry with Navy, who had won 14 in row up until last season, when Army beat the middies.  I like the Black Knights to make it two in a row this season and start a new trend. 
Take Army and the 3 for $50
Take the OVER for $50
Parlay:  4:1  Army and the Over for $50 
ETC.
Guy gets a petition going to get Baker Mayfield’s statue to be of him doing the flag plant at the suckeyes mid-field.  Already has 4,000 signatures!
Why Aren’t There MORE Heads Rolling In East Lansing?
Nassar got 60 years for all the sex crimes he committed on student athletes.  What I want to know is:  Where is the Sandusky outrage?  Why haven’t the “Enablers” been identified in all of this?  Especially his immediate boss?  Can anyone answer that?  Where’s Emmert handing down the Death Penalty to Sparty Athletics???
The Outback in East Lansing Is Losing Customers At A Dramatic Rate

The Outback restaurant in East Lansing has seen business fall off by almost 50% according to a local report.  Are East Lansing people really that cheesed off about being snubbed by the restaurant chain?  Apparently

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Mid-Week Round-Up!!

The End Of An Era

Some of you may or may not have heard that last Sunday’s first attempt to bring down the Silverdome kind of didn’t work…In fact, it was still standing on Monday.  I was driving home Monday afternoon (I work right across the street from the Silverdome) and saw the police and a few by-standers out en-force, so I stopped in the left turn lane on Featherstone directly north of the Silverdome and turned on my video camera (phone).  As they Say, Timing is EVERYTHING!  (sorry for the orientation!  I thought I fixed it but it isn't uploading the correction...)



Turn up the volume!

That voice you hear is me.  It was LOUD!!!  You could feel the double shock wave of the explosives and then the ensuing wave from the collapse.  And the dust cloud was HUGE!!!
We’ll miss you Silverdome.  I had a lot of fond memories there.

I Apparently Hit Some Nerves on Monday…

I got a LOT of feedback from Monday’s post, particularly regarding the fact that the Committee decided to put 2 SEC teams into the CFP.

This is a cardinal sin with some of you…I get that. 

Look, the way I see it, and I know I’m repeating myself, the Committee hasn’t gotten it right from the start and have made a mistake in each of the first 3 seasons of the CFP.  In year one, it was no Big iiX team (either TCU or Baylor were worthy) and they selected the eventual CFP Champion suckeyes

Year 2 SHOULD have been the suckeyes, but they instead claimed that the B1G Conference Champion Sparty was better than the 1-loss but massively loaded with NFL talent suckeye squad.  Sparty went on to get destroyed by Bama on New Year’s Eve, embarrassing the Committee and creating an unwatchable game.

In year 3, The Committee F’d up again by selecting the suckeyes when they were clearly the 3rd best team in the conference (PSU and Michigan each had 2 losses with way better players and either team was clearly better statistically at that point).
So, yeah, this season was a mess for the #4 position when Wiscy couldn’t take care of business in Indy.  The Committee had to hold its nose and make a decision between the suckeyes, Bama, and I’m sure that USC was brought up.  The suckeyes lost 55-24 at Kinnick.  Bama hasn’t beaten anyone in the top 15 and had a really weak schedule.  And USC got clobbered by the 3-loss Domers.  The deciding factors: The Suckeyes flaws were greater than Bama’s weaknesses.  And Satan doesn’t lose Blow-Out games.  And as I stated, Bama will be close to 100% with respect to healthy players.  Vegas had Bama as a 1-point favorite over the suckeyes…And right now, the Clemson – Bama game is EVEN in Vegas.  I wouldn’t be surprised if Bama wins the whole damn thing.  But this is EXACTLY what everyone wanted.

So, was it a close decision?  Sure.  Would I have been happy if they would have picked the Suckeyes?  I dunno.  Probably not...  I would have been happy that Bama was out (because we shouldn’t be rewarding weak schedules and a team that doesn’t even play in the conference Championship) but I don’t think the suckeyes would be able to beat Bama on a neutral field this season

When you put the decision into the hands of a committee, and not just taking the 4 highest ranked Conference Champs, well, you’re going to have issues like this.
Take it out of the hands of the committee and just say the top 4 Conference champs regardless of record and losses (by final ranking) and you get your wish.  Better yet, go to 6 or 8 teams, take the Conf Champs and 3 at large.  Everyone will be happy! 
  
Sparty Fans To Boycott the Outback

I got a lot of feedback on the B1G being “fixed for Michigan” and why even bother playing the regular season if the Bowl’s just end up choosing whoever they want?
Sparty DESERVES TO BE PLAYING ON NEW YEAR’S DAY!!!”  The Bowls have been more or less choosing whoever they want for decades.  Nothing has changed, there’s just a twist this season.

It’s a trivial thing and it wouldn’t have happened if Wiscy would have done its job.  When Wiscy lost to the suckeyes, the pecking order of the B1G’s Bowl Tie ins shifted and the other “At Large Bowl” The Orange, selected Wiscy from the field of best available teams.  Unfortunately, there’s a little-known codicil in the Bowl Constitution that says when a B1G Team is playing in the Orange Bowl (or any conference, for that matter), the Citrus in Orlando is not allowed to have another team from the same conference, which screwed up Sparty’s New Year’s Day Bowl destination which they were slotted to play.  The Outback had already made its selection of Michigan.  The Outback has no affiliation with either the Orange or the Citrus.  The deal with the Outback was signed, sealed and delivered before Saturday.  Then, Saturday happened and Sparty got bumped to the next tier on the bowl ladder – the Holiday

Add in to the mix that Michigan gets better ratings than Sparty and it all makes sense. 
Shit happens.  Get over it.

But I will say that it’s nice to be playing the 6th place SEC team vs. the 4th place team as 2 SEC teams are in the play-off, moving everyone in that conference up another notch. 
They’re all meaningless bowls anyway…Early Lines:  Michigan 7.5 favorite over South Carolina and Sparty a 4.5 dog to Wash State...

And Of Course, This Is Now A Thing…

Harbaugh and D’Antoinsuo are taking Twitter shots at each other after the above mentioned debacle regarding the bowls.  D’Antoinsuo started it with a sleight against Michigan and Harbaugh followed up with a salty congrats on the Sparty turnaround season despite “all the off-field issues”. 


Whatever…


What’s The Deal-io about Ole Miss QB Shea Patterson?

www.mgoblog.com has the best summary of what’s happening with Ole Miss and the seniors that can transfer immediately due to NCAA sanctions.  Ole Miss QB phenom Shea Patterson requested his release and is interested in Michigan.  Highlight Reel:


Michigan would be foolish NOT to have some interest in Shea as depth at QB is non-existent for next season.  It would be tricky as Brian points out with respect to Peters, who at one point was rumored to transfer (but his father said all BS) and one more year sitting on the bench.  Still, any QB help should be embraced by everyone.
There’s a few other players at Ole Miss that are looking at Michigan, also.  In fact, there will be 3 players from Ole Miss in Ann Arbor this weekend!  Including an OT that could really help out!


MMPG  - How In The Hell Do You Lose A College Hoops Game When You Have a 20 Point Lead?

I’m still a little ill after Monday’s Michigan Men’s Hoops debacle down in Columbus.  Long story short:  Michigan was leading this game by as much as 20 in the 1st half and the score was 43-30 Michigan at halftime.  Michigan came out in the second half and shot the poorest of ANY TEAM OF THE BEILEIN ERA for one half of basketball.  I don’t know what to say here except that sometimes you get outliers on the ‘ole bell curveThink of this as a 6-sigma event.  Michigan only scored 19 2nd half points.  It should never, EVER happen again.  

I think…

The Numbers:

FG% 2nd half:     5-29       17.2%
3FG% 2nd Half:  1-12        0.083%!!!!!

This is a “Live By The 3, Die By The 3” issue.  I’ll still take a 3-point attempt over a 2-point attempt all day, but Jeez-Louise, MAKE SOME SHOTS!!!

The Coaching Carousel Tracker

Fisher leaves FSU High and Dry.

In what was only a rumor 3 weeks ago, Texas A&M proved to be ready to do the right things at the Head Coaching Football position and went after and got Jimbo Fisher.  After 8 seasons with the Seminoles, Fisher decided he’d done all that he could for FSU and jumped into the SEC West Mess with a contract reportedly worth $75M over 10 Seasons.…I give him 50-50 odds of succeeding at A&M.  Jimbo Fisher is 0-11 against Satan and all Satan Coaching Tree Descendants.   


Because we still need a score card:



UCF makes a great move and hires former OU QB Josh Heupel!  This is a great hire as he was the offensive coordinator at surging Mizzou and he will keep the UCF train rolling along!

Chad Morris of SMU is the rumored next coach to be at Arkansas.  Should be a decent hire, but not a lot of splash….

FSU made the pitch and landed Willie Taggart.  He’ll be happier in Florida, of that I’m sure.  The Question is:  What does Oregon do in Coach Search Year #2?   

The hire that is now taking forever?  Tennessee, who else?  After dick-tripping their way all over the country throwing money and a contract at whoever would listen, Fulmer seems to be taking his time and losing valuable recruiting time before the early signing period. 

Etc.
FSU May Be The Biggest Disappointment
From another loyal reader questioning the MMQ’s, in particular the most disappointing team.  I agree that FSU was a “Top 4” team on a LOT OF PRE-SEASON Lists!  Mine included, especially after the way they played Michigan in the Orange last year and the fact that their QB and most of that defense was returning.  How could you NOT like them?  Lose your starting QB and some other folks and it all goes to hell.  And then lose their coach?  Okay, I could change my mind, but Tennessee is a train wreck, too
This Is Becoming The New Trend – Players Continue To Bow Out Of Bowl Games
And if you’re blaming them, I’m guessing you’re the same person(s) that doesn’t want them to be compensated for their efforts on the field.  I personally have no issue with this whatsoever.  And it wouldn’t surprise me to see more players taking this position that AREN’T Declaring for the NFL draft.  Why risk your own future for a meaningless bowl trophy?

Monday, December 4, 2017

A Little Anger In Columbus This AM

The Suckeyes Just Got “Penn Stated”

I went and reviewed my post from last season after “Selection Sunday” and was surprised to see that I commented that I didn’t watch the show.  Yesterday I DID watch the show and I was tickled to see that the suckeyes were left out

Now EVERYONE IN COLUMBUS KNOWS HOW HAPPY VALLEY FELT LAST SEASON!  
Karma’s a Bitch...

In Short:  You can’t go on the road and get pantsed by 31 points regardless of how many good wins you have

And if Wiscy would have just taken care of business…But we did get 10 minutes of this:


Lucas Oil Stadium should be embarrassed…

So I guess this means that everyone should play fewer conference games and everyone needs to schedule Mercer late in the season to keep your perfect record unblemished.  The SEC has been rewarded with two teams making the CFP and only playing 8 conference games…BS.  The committee should have held its nose and taken the suckeyes…even though I’m not sure they are one of the 4 best teams in the country!
But I will still say that CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIPS NEED TO MEAN SOMETHING!  Which is consistent with what I said last year.  And what Dan Wetzel at Yahoo Sports is saying this year (I’d read the whole article as it’s a good one that soap boxes post season reform for College Football):


Excerpts:

For the second consecutive year the Big Ten staged a championship game where the winner didn’t win much. Neither Penn State last year nor Ohio State this season advanced to the College Football Playoff. It was the same with USC in the Pac-12. A year ago, Alabama could have lost the SEC title game and still made the playoff. This year the Tide didn’t even have to play and they got in

MMQ:

This season, TWO CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIPS (Pac 12, B1G) meant nothing.  Either Michigan or PSU should have been the B1G’s representative last season (Michigan was the best Stats team that was NOT in the CFP and of course, PSU won the B1G, but was lousy on the stats line).  The suckeyes were not a good team last season and yet somehow made it in.  But if you’re going to ignore the Conference Championships, abandon them for player safety and other reasons.

 Back to Wetzel:

While at first consideration it may sound like an eight-team playoff devalues the season compared to a four-team playoff, but if you’re eliminating the conference title game round, that isn’t the case.
Here’s the simple frame work.
First weekend of December is no longer reserved for conference championship games. They are the first round of an eight-team playoff, where the higher-seeded team gets to host. The champions of the five major conferences would be granted automatic bids. If you win your league, you are in
Again, I don’t want to cut and paste the entire article, but the whole post season needs to be re-thought. 

Does Bama getting in piss me off?  It didn’t seem to piss off Urban Legend that much.

he knows the suckeyes had a bad loss…

The fact that Bama is in and will have a decent shot at beating Clemson in 4 weeks as they will be healthy at Linebacker confirms for me, anyway, that the committee is paying attention to those sorts of things now.  So to answer the question, no.  I think Bama is one of the 4 best teams

Also, the B1G’s last 2 season’s dismal performances (sparty 38-0 against Bama and suckeyes 31-0 against Clemson) is another strike against the committee taking a team from the B1G, but I think the committee screwed up twice in 2015 and 2016 by not taking the Best B1G team from either Season (Suckeyes in 2015 – Michigan in 2016). 
Wiscy winning would have changed the outcome as they would have been in and Bama would be out and that would have been sweet, also.  Bama getting in is just a world we’re living in and everyone should get used to that.
Read Thamel, too.  Good opinion stuff here…


Will the play in games be more compelling?  I guess we’ll see.  Early picks:  I like Clemson in a squeaker over Bama and Oklahoma over Georgia.  I think it’s Baker Mayfield’s year with a Heisman and National Championship.

The MMQ’s

The MMQ Game of the Year:  This one is always tough because you have to take all of them into consideration.  Four, for me anyway, that were in the running were Oklahoma – suckeyes, Auburn – Georgia, Auburn – Bama and Domers – Canes.  I guess I’ll go with Domers – Canes because someone I really hated was gonna lose, but to see someone get pantsed in a big game is even better!!!

MMQ for the Game we THOUGHT was the Best Game of the Season (at the time it was played):  This is for that game between two teams that everyone thought would have some sort of CFP Impact later in the season.  There’s only two:  Gatorland vs. Michigan and FSU vs. Bama.  Gatorland and Michigan both had “Down” seasons and FSU-Bama turned out to be a nothing burger with FSU stumbling.  I’m giving this one to FSU-Bama, but it’s close. 

MMQ Upset of the Year:  Hands down – Iowa over the suckeyes.  I know it wasn’t the largest point spread upset, but it was the biggest surprise that only a few people saw coming.  Wash State over USC considered here, also. But Iowa singlehandedly kept the suckeyes out of the CFP.

MMQ Best Comeback of the Year:  Hands down UCLA coming back in the 4th quarter against Texas A&M.  Both coaches in that game fired…

MMQ Coach of the Year:  This one is tricky.  But I think you have to give it to First Year at Purdue Coach Brohm for getting the Boilers back to a bowl, first time since 2012.  (Relax Sparty, Antionianus was considered.  But I felt that last season was more of a fluke than anything).

MMQ for the Team of the Year:  I normally don’t go with an undefeated or highly ranked team here.  However, I do have to pick an undefeated team this season as they have beaten everyone they’ve face by double digits.  Scott Frost’s UCF Knights win easily here and drew a tough team in Auburn for their bowl game…

MMQ Most Disappointing Team of the Year:  Teams in consideration:  FSU, Gatorland, Tennessee, Texas, and USC.  Tennessee NOT winning an SEC game, firing its coach and all the other crap has to be the winner here.

MMQ for the Most Improved Team of the Year: The Candidates: 
Sparty:  3-9 to 9-3 and 3rd in the B1G East.  Not Bad
Domers:  Ditto.  4-8 to 9-3 is a nice turnaround
Spoilermakers:  winning 6 and getting to a Bowl for the first time since 2012
Iowa State:  Getting Bowl Eligible without breaking a sweat and beating The Laters in their house and also beating TCU at home is quite an accomplishment.
The Winner:  Iowa State.  We were talking about them a lot mid-season and they are going to be a force to reckon with in the Big iiX for some time to come.  

MMQ Best Coach’s Comment of the Year:  Satan: “Rat Poison”.  Hands Down.

MMQ for Best Coaching Hire:  I already gave Brohm Coach of the Year so I’m giving the Coaching Hire to Fleck.  Herman was considered, but Texas is still a mess

MMQ for The Worst Referee’d Game of the Year:  Pick one of about 6 that Michigan played in this season.  With the Game at or near the top of the list.

MMQ Vote For Heisman:  If I had one.  1.  Mayfield  2.  Jackson  3.  Love 
 
MMQ Best Player of the Year that Won’t Be Considered for Heisman:  Mo Hurst.  No one else.
 
MMQ For Most Overrated Conference of the Year:  SEC and Pac 12 considered.  Right now, I think the Pac 12 is the weaker conference, but everyone seems to know that.  Therefore, the SEC takes the crown again as the most overated

MMQ For Worst Coaching Performance of the Year:  The Candidates:

Harbaugh:  Yes, I’m putting him on the list.  If Speight was your best QB going into the season and O’Korn was the back-up, I have concerns.  Especially after observing O’Korn as a starter.  Peters should have been further along in development after having a red-shirt under his belt.  Sorry, Jimmy, that’s a fact. Also:  still just 1-7 against rivals and finished his 3rd B1G season at 5-4.
Sumlin:  So much talent and so few positive results.  I’m not sure he gets a look from anyone else at this point, even though he’s a great recruiter with high ranked classes.
Jones:  What else can be said?  Great recruiter with lousy sideline in game decisions.
Herman:  Didn’t win any Big iiX “marquee” games, but did make a bowl at 6-6.
The Winner:  2 of the 4 nominees lost their jobs, so piling on there seems excessive.  I’m going in house and saying that Harbaugh should have done a better job with Hoke’s last class than he did.

The MMQ for the “Well That’s Fabulous” Moment of the Year:  So MANY to choose from that I really don’t know how to make a decision.  But when I started putting the list together in my head (including two SEC teams in the CFP) I got to the situation in Tennessee.  Without question, we’ll be talking about the WTF week that was as the Volunteers tried to hire a new HC.  Got to be the winner, with the 2 SEC teams in the CFP a close 2nd.

MMQ for the Most Off the Field-Football Related Issue That Occupied Our Time:  This one’s close.  The overall coaching carousel vs. the debacle that is Tennessee.  There were some others (Ole Miss violations, UNC not getting slapped by the NCAA, others) but I’m going with the Coaching Carousel this year due to the fact that winning coaches are leaving great programs (Fisher – FSU, Frost – UCF) to take over dumpster fires and see if they’re as good as they think they are.  Malzhan wisely chose a contract extension at Auburn vs. going home to Arkansas, who is now scrambling to fill their vacancy.  Should get interesting. 

The Bowls Are Set!

In what is slowly becoming a big issue with seniors already announcing that they won’t be playing, the bowl match-ups have been announced.  Here’s a link to Yahoo Sports Ranking of the Bowls:

Michigan meets South Carolina as the 13th Best Bowl Game in a rematch of the 2014 Outback Bowl, which everyone remembers for this:


Jadeveon Clowney’s draft stock shot up after that hit on Deveon Smith
Oh, and this is a real thing:

26. Cheribundi Tart Cherry Boca Raton Bowl: Florida Atlantic (10-3) vs. Akron (7-6) – Tuesday, Dec. 19 (Boca Raton, Fla.)

The Hot Seat

ZAPPED List

We’ll keep track of who’s gone as the season progresses….
  1. “Holier than Thou” Hugh Freeze
  2. Andersen – Oregon State
  3. Kugler – Texas El Paso 
  4. Tyson Summers – Georgia Southern
  5. McElwain – Florida.
  6. Butch Jones – Tennessee
  7. Mora – UCLA.  Was on the ECOD at 4 last week.   
  8. Bielema - Arkansas
  9. Riley - Nebraska
  10. Sumlin – Texas A&M
  11. Graham - ASU

The Hot Seat

1.    Beatty – Kansas
2.    Fedora – UNC
3.    Lovie Smith – Illinois hands Indiana first B1G Win
4.    Ruhle – Baylor
The Coach Matrix


Frost is going to Nebraska!
That’s exciting news for Husker Nation and the B1G West should get a lot more interesting at this point. 
Etc.
This Week In Schadenfreude…
Columbus is PISSED OFF!  But, hey, now you know how PSU Felt last season.