Monday, August 4, 2014

Monday Morning Reflections

Figuring I need to get “into the routine” of getting a post out on Monday Mornings, I decided to put together an olio of sorts as to what’s been happening in the college football world.
Coaches Top 25 Poll

Sponsored by AMWAY?  Seriously?  Oh well….
Michigan, somewhat expectedly, did NOT make the pre-season top 25 in the coaches poll that came out last week.  Again, I really didn’t expect they would with the question marks on offensive line, new offensive coordinator and an EXTREMELY DIFFICULT Road schedule with all three arch rivals away from the Big House.  But, as Brian Griese said in a recent CFB interview on ESPN, it’s time to put up or shut up.  No excuses.  Or rather, "Excuses are Bullshit!!!" I believe the MMQ said that recently as well, now that Auburn has proven that you can go from total SUCK to the National Title game in one season.  

Pat Forde runs down the 25 most intriguing coaches in College Football. 
It’s a compelling list, and it got me to thinking about who my TOP 10 ALL TIME intriguing coaches would be.  Granted, I have to more or less go with the coaches from the time I’ve been alive, but I then decided I could open it up to coaches from the past based on what I’ve read or learned about them. So, (limiting this to football), I’m going to run down my Top 10 Coaches of the Game that if I had a chance to invite them all to dinner and have them tell stories, well, the dinner would last well into the wee hours of the morning!
1.     Bear Bryant – Legendary.  Definitely a coach you wish you could have seen in person or be lucky enough to score a handshake or an autograph at some point.   Bo talked about being a little in awe of him in his autobiography, and if Bo is in awe of someone, well, he deserves a spot on my list.

2.    “Bo” Schembechler – I know that some of the ohio people that read this will immediately scream “HOMER!” at this, but I think the student of Woody was eventually a better coach than his coach and teacher at ohio.  I know that a lot of what I’m basing that on is subjective, but here’s a simple question:  Don’t parents and coaches want their children and proteges to be better than they are?  So, didn’t Woody achieve that in Bo?

3.    Woody Hayes – Without Woody, ohio would have been nothing.  They still revere him down in Columbus.  He made ohio more ohio than anyone else could have.  If it weren’t for his career ending blemish, I’d probably have him above Bo, but that’s just too much to overcome.  Also goes without saying that certain coaches know when to hang up the whistle. 

4.    Joe Paterno – With the exception of the revelations of what happened in the late 90’s and through the early 2000’s, Joe Pa was one of the greats, regardless.  He unfortunately didn’t have the ability to keep someone close to him that was in sync with social issues as time progressed.  To assume that “horsing around in the shower” with small boys was okay was just wrong…but I hate to think that it diminishes in any way all the other great things the man did on and off the field.  Rumor has it that anew statue of JoePa will be put on display in State College in front of theTavern Restaurant.  And while I know this will anger a lot of people, well, it’s okay.  The real criminal is behind bars.  Let’s enjoy the memory of Joe Pa.
5.    Tom Osborne – An inspiring coach that led a team from the middle of nowhere to the heights of collegiate football more often than not.  Osborne is rumored to be a gentlemen’s gentlemen, off the field of course, but a helluva football coach on it.  A top 10 list wouldn’t be complete without a mention of Tom.  Of course, I could have done without the split National Title in 1997, but that’s in the past!

6.    Jimmy Johnson – I Absolutely HATED this guy when he was at Miami, but either I’ve come around or he’s softened a bit and isn’t the Ass Hat I originally thought he was.  I would enjoy sitting down with him and hearing some stories at this point.

7.    Lou Holtz – I know, he was and still is one of the plethora of reasons I hate the domers at this point, but that doesn’t make him any less intriguing.  Yes, there was the book that more or less lambasted Holtz and his time in South Bend, but still, he is a compelling coach that shaped the lives of many young men. 

8.    Steve Spurrier – I questioned putting the Heisman trophy winning QB at Florida, head coach at Duke, Florida and now South Carolina for the simple fact that he left his alma mater to coach in the NFL and now is coaching a rival in the SEC.  But then it hit me, if that’s not intriguing, what is?

9.    Nick Saban – Why not?  I bash the guy so much on this blog, but at the same time, there probably will never be another coach that has a run like he’s had in college football.

10. TIE:  Fielding H. Yost - Les Miles – Yost simply because I would have loved to hear the man talk in person.  And he is a legend…someone that changed the game.  With respect to Miles, he’s a Bo Schembechler protégé that many think has exceeded his coach and mentor in individual and team success.  While that could be argued a lot of different ways, I think it’s impossible to think that any dinner table would be boring if Les was in attendance.

Early Intriguing Games You Need To Circle the Calendar For RIGHT NOW!
August 28th:  Texas A&M at South Carolina – An early SEC Matchup right out of the gate!  I like it!
August 30th:  PSU @ UCF – I just wanna see Franklin on the sidelines and see if the Lions and pull off the upset…
August 30th:  WVU @ Alabama – Can Holgerson upset Alabama early?  Dana and Saban will be interesting never the less…
August 30th:  Okie State vs. Florida St. – Hmmm…Will there be a hangover on the Seminole side of the ball?
September 6th:  Sparty @ Oregon – Sparty vs. the Quack Attack…Whoever wins this will be a pre-season top 4 finalist candidate, for sure.
September 6th:  USC @ Stanford – Ditto
September 6th:  Michigan @ domers – Nobody…NOBODY wants to lose the last one…I expect all out war in South Bend…
September 12th:  UCLA @ Texas – Mora vs. Strong…Does the new coach get a home upset of the Pac12 favorite?
September 20th:  Clemson @ FSU – There’s a lot of revenge brewing in South Carolina for this game…Beware Seminoles!

The Best "Hot/Crazy" chart I've seen in awhile....How come we didn’t think of this?  I mean, I guess we all kind of had it in the back of our minds, but still, why didn’t one of us write it down and market it?  And again, don't let those Unicorns go!!!

And let's not forget Barney's Version!!

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