Thursday, January 31, 2008

Duke and North Carolina Tested?


Boston College @ North Carolina
The Tar Heels have a week off and my guess is that Roy Williams did a lot of defensive work in that week. The week off also allowed Tyler Hansbrough to take off all the band-aids on his face. You could Bc in the same class as anybody not named Duke or North Carolina (and maybe Clemson) in that you are not really sure what you are going to see - Maybe it is a 30 point win over Wake Forest, maybe it is a home loss to Virginia Tech. The Eagles will have to play their best game of the year to beat North Carolina and that still might not be enough. I like the Heels by 10-15 points.
Prediction: North Carolina


NC State @ Duke
Duke has quietly ascended to the #3 team in the country with their only loss coming on a Pitt 3 pointer at the end of the game. I think Duke won't finish quite that high, but they are certainly improved over last year. But lets get back to NC State who is so up and down you never what you are going to get. They lose at home to GeorgiaTech, beat FSU on the road after being down nearly three touchdowns. They do not play well at PG and Duke will smell like a shark smells blood. I think Duke presses NC State into a double digit halftime deficit that grows into a 20 point win.
Prediction: Duke

Season: 27-5
ACC: 12-3

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Georgia Travels to South Carolina

Georgia @ South Carolina
Georgia is just 1-4 on the road, but South Carolina is a pathetic 6-5 at home. The Gamecocks are not performing as of late going just 2-6 ATS in their last 8. When South Carolina is winning it is with their backcourt of Devan Downey and Zam Frederick. Dave Odom's club is shooting above 40% from 3 point land. Georgia is having a tough time scoring on the road averaging 10 points less per game. They are led by their backcourt as well of Sundiata Gaines and Billy Humphrey. Whomever can get more out of their frontcourt will win this close game.
Prediction: South Carolina

Vanderbilt @ Ole Miss
Ole Miss' fairy tale season has taken a detour in recent weeks. The Rebels return to the friendly confines of Tad Smith Coliseum where they are undefeated this year. Andy Kennedy's team is shooting a red hot 51% at home and close to 90 points per game in Oxford. Chris Warren on the outside and Dwayne Curtis on the inside will give Vandy tough matchups. The Commodores are very good in the halfcourt and will need to slow it down against the run n gun Rebels. I think Ole Miss wins this at home pulling away at the end.
Prediction: Ole Miss

Season: 25-5
SEC: 15-2


Favorite Links of the Week

Another Recruiting vs On The Field Success
The relationship of recruiting and success may be self-evident enough to fall under the heading of “duh studies,” but we are approaching the peak not only of heavy breathing over collections of teenage talent. Here is another link to recruiting successes and failures.

NFL Alumni Team
What would happen if you created an All-Alumni starting lineup of current players NFL players? Which schools would be able to put together the best teams? Here are the top 12 (with one extra) including Tom Brady's Michigan and Peyton Manning's Tennessee.
Warren Sapp is one of the many NFL players from The U

Revisiting SEC Predictions

Here are my SEC predictions at the beginning of the year.

Dana Jacobsen doesn't care for Notre Dame
If they're like me, they couldn't have picked Dana Jacobson from a three-person lineup, of men or women.

Senior Bowl Winners and Losers
It's only a step in a long process, and it does nothing more than set the tone for The Combines, but Senior Bowl week does matter in the jockeying for draft position.Andre Woodson was the showcase QB with Ryan and Brohm not playing

The Orange Bowl is officially gone.

Coaching Hires by Grade

With the dust -- in some cases gold -- mostly settled, Dennis Dodd looks at the 18 Division I-A coaching hires and tells fans of those teams what they have to look forward to. Here were my grades for last year's freshman class of coaches.

OJ Mayo did anything any other college kid would do and has to pay for it.


Duke under the radar?
Duke has been flying under the radar all season, not being mentioned in the same sentence as Kansas or Memphis, and that's just with fine with the Blue Devils, writes Heather Dinich.

Feb 6 is a national holiday in the South
Signing Day is fast approaching. So we went to Scout.com's publishers for the inside scoop on what's been going onJulio Jones is the considering Alabama and Oklahoma among others

Facebook is awesome
A Wake Forest reserve running back has been dismissed from the team after writing on his Facebook page that he would "blow up campus."

Which teams have the most returning starters?
I've always felt this is helpful in forecasting how successful each team may be relative to their previous season. For example, Notre Dame was among the lowest last year in returning starters (8) going into spring practice and we all know how memorable the Irish football season was.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Maryland and Duke... Get the Tissues


Duke @ Maryland
The Terps consider Duke their biggest rival in the ACC. The Blue Devils consider North Carolina their biggest rival. Many say Duke is playing the best of anyone in the ACC and I agree, but still think the Tar Heels will end the season on top. How did a Maryland team who had lost to American University and Ohio University beat North Carolina in Chapel Hill? A little known fact is that the Tar Heels had to bus home during the middle of the night Thursday after beating Georgia Tech and then had to play early Saturday afternoon. I like Duke in this one, but Maryland's emotion keeps them close for the first 37 minutes of the game.
Prediction: Duke

Georgia Tech @ Virginia
These are two teams going in the opposite direction at the moment. Georgia Tech is on a two game winning streak and 2 points away from a three game winning streak. Virginia has lost their last four of their last five. The Cavaliers are really struggling to find someone else besides Sean Singletary who can consistently score. The key to this game will be turnovers for Georgia Tech. If they can stay to 15 or under then they have a very good chance to win on a campus that has been unkind to the Yellow Jackets in all sports. I like Virginia in a game that goes down to the wire.
Prediction: Virginia

Clemson @ Miami
After starting 14-1, Miami is suffering through a 3 game losing streak. Clemson has righted the ship after two teams from North Carolina threatened to capsize their NCAA Tournament push a few weeks back. I look for this game to be high scoring, up tempo game with two athletic teams. The Tigers will be able to control the boards with their bruising front court. Miami will counter with Jack McClinton and a team that loves to shoot 3's. I like Miami in a very close game at home.
Prediction: Miami

Season: 20-4
ACC: 10-2

Bruce Pearl and Tennessee Just Chillin'

Bruce Pearl will be able to relax Sunday after his big victory

Georgia @ Tennessee
Georgia plays really, really well at home; on the road is another story. Tennessee is the class of the SEC this year and shows no signs of slowing down at home. Watch for how Tennessee guards Georgia G Billy Humphrey. Humphrey is a threat to score from anywhere on the floor, but after him the Bulldogs are pretty mediocre on offense. Tennessee's pressure may force Georgia be more up tempo than they want and not allow Humphrey to work in the half court. I think this game is competitive for about 25 minutes, but then the Vols pressure and speed overtakes the Bulldogs in a rout.
Prediction: Tennessee

Ole Miss @ Miss State
I was really high on the Rebels and then they lost on the road at the easiest place to play in the SEC, Auburn. Miss State is coming on strong after struggling through a respectable non-conference schedule. Ole Miss is led by freshman Chris Warren and as he goes, so goes the Rebels. Miss State's defense is stifling at home allowing opponents just 34% shooting from the floor. I like Miss State in a low scoring, slug fest at home.
Prediction: Miss State

Vanderbilt @ Florida
I don't think Florida is quite as good as their record, but they are doing just enough to win most of their games so far. Playing at the O-Dome is a big advantage for the Gators that they will need against Vanderbilt. The Commodores have a center, AJ Ogilvy, that will give Florida trouble inside. Florida will respond with their athletic wings and backcourt to overtake Vanderbilt in the last two minutes.
Prediction: Florida

Season: 20-4
SEC: 10-2

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Georgia Tech-NC State Leads ACC Action

Paul Hewitt and Georgia Tech really need a road ACC win

Ga Tech @ NC State
Both teams got their first ACC wins over the weekend. Georgia Tech has won just 1 ACC road game over the last 2 seasons. Both teams have talent, but are still trying to figure out how to utilize it best. Both teams are struggling at PG as well. As you can see, these two teams mirror each other. The only difference is that NC State is playing at home and Georgia Tech has never won at the RBC Center (0-7).
Prediction: NC State

Virginia @ Florida State
FSU has won 5 in a row against Virginia in Tallahassee. The Noles are spreading it around on offense with 5 players averaging in double figures in scoring. Florida State is coming off of a disappointing blowout loss at Wake Forest.
Virginia goes as does their supporting cast around star Sean Singletary. If the Senior has to do it by himself, then the Cavs struggle on offense and won’t stand much of a chance in this game. I like Florida State to rebound from a bad 2nd half against Wake Forest.
Prediction: Florida State

Duke @ Va Tech
Before this past weekend, all of Va Tech’s ACC games had been decided by 4 points or less. The Blue Devils are using more of a fast paced offense this year, relying less on stars and more on the contribution of all 5 players on the floor. I expect Virginia Tech to try and slow the game down. The Hokies chances were severely diminished when they lost Center Jeff Allen due to suspension for this game; he could have given Duke trouble inside due to the Blue Devils lack of size.
Prediction: Duke

Just some ACC notes...the conference is rated #1 in the RPI. They are 29-18 vs teams from “BCS” conferences.

Season: 16-3 ACC: 8-1

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

SEC Midweek Predictions

Tennessee @ Kentucky
This Kentucky team looks like it is turning the corner under 1st year coach Billy Gillespie. The Wildcats knocked off
previously undefeated Vanderbilt and lost two close road games at two of the better teams in the SEC (Miss St and Florida) in their last 3.

Tennessee languished in the first half against Ohio State before closing out the Buckeyes. Chris Lofton, a Kentucky native, has torched Kentucky in his first 3 years but the senior is really struggling this year; the Smith tandem and Wayne Chism have been leading the Vols. This could be a classic trap game because for as well as Kentucky has played in their last 3 they have just 1 win to show for it. Watch out for Kentucky freshman Patrick Patterson to have a big game.

Prediction: Kentucky

Florida @ South Carolina
The Gators are quietly near the top of the SEC again this year with a 3-1 start. Freshman Nick Calethes may have had his best game of the year in the OT win over Kentucky on Saturday. Florida is also doing it with defense holding opponents under their scoring average in 16 of their 19 games. The Gamecocks are struggling so far in what might be Dave Odom's last year. South Carolina is led by two transfers in their backcourt of Devan Downey and Zam Frederick. I think South Carolina gives Florida all they can handle, but the Gators survive.
Prediction: Florida


Season: 16-3
SEC: 8-2

ACC Basketball Clips

Dick Vitale is out for a little while, but Mike Patrick is picking up slack in defending Duke



Duke blogs disagree

JJ Hickson's addtion to NC State was thought to be a huge plus, but it is hurting some parts of the team

Jared Allen bumped into an official on Saturday picking up his 6th foul and 2 games on the pine. But he admitted to the foul.

ACC Recap from Saturday

My YouTube Channel

Monday, January 21, 2008

Football News for College Football Addict

SEC
The first clear signal the offseason has begun for Georgia football has arrived: Two Bulldogs football players were arrested and jailed early Sunday morningwithin 34 minutes of each other.

Teams to watch in 2008


The college all star games not doing it for ya? This bowl wrap up should keep you busy until Spring Football.


Les Miles and Jim Grobe gave the biggest bang for the buck in 2007 for the SEC and ACC; Saban gives the least

Georgia left a good impression on voters minds heading into 2008.

Joker Phillips will get the Kentucky job....after Rich Brooks leaves

Petrino lands his first star recruit


Meyer still pissed about 5-5 on 4th downs, goes after LSU recruit

Meanwhile, LSU celebrates BCS title

And there still is a chance of Miles to Michigan because Rich Rod has yet to put ink to paper

Recruiting Rankings sometimes leads to on field performance, but not always

ACC

Virginia's starting QB missed the end of the Gator and is missing the Spring semester.


Thunder will be heard after Lightning in Clemson next year after all.

College Football

Cheapshots of 2007

Salt Lake City streetfight injures 2 Utah DL.

Infamous Okie State QB transfers to Texas Southern.

My YouTube Channel

Norm Chow joins UCLA staff. The same Norm Chow who took Carson Palmer and Matt Leinart to Heisman trophies. Things just got a little more interesting in LA.

A look at who is filling the shoes of the departed (early) in college football.

And now that the early entries are in its time to look ahead to the 2009 Draft.

ACC's Best


Well there goes North Carolina's bid for an undefeated season. Just like the SEC in football, it is too tough to win the ACC going 16-0. Maryland's Gary Williams leads active coaches in wins over #1 ranked teams. Here is my top 5 in the ACC right now:

ACC
1. North Carolina
Don't cry Heels fans...just get Tyler Hansbrough some help on offense
2. Duke
Back to playing Duke basketball with pressure, FT shooting, and 3 pointers
3. Clemson
Tiger team played Duke tough for 30 mins. This will be a tourney team
4. Maryland
The Terps live for the spotlight. Now they need to show up the rest of their games
5. Miami
Despite the OT loss @ NC State, I still like what Frank Haith is doing for this season

Top of the SEC to Ya'


Two weeks into the conference season and we have a little better idea of how the conference shapes up. Here is my top 5 for the SEC so far this season.

SEC
1. Tennessee
Is the class of the SEC far and away so far. They will be very tough to beat at home
2. Ole Miss
Losing to Auburn really hurts, but I think Ole Miss is still best in the West
3. Vanderbilt
The two game losing streak is over. Vandy may have a tougher time with athletic teams
4. Florida
This team is starting to find themselves with a road win at Alabama and a OT win over Kentucky
5. Miss State
Playing much better now than earlier in the year and will challenge their in state rival in the West

Friday, January 18, 2008

ACC Weekend Predictions

Virginia Tech @ Georgia Tech
Paul Hewitt said he expected his team to come out with the same intensity against Virginia Tech as they did against North Carolina on Wednesday in a 1 point loss. Georgia Tech has been able to hang with the top teams this year having lost to three top 10 teams all by less than 5 points, but it is the other game where they have trouble. The key for the Yellow Jackets will be turnovers. If they can have less than 15 turnovers and play with 90% of the intensity they did on Wednesday, they should
win this one. Ga Tech wins this one by 4-8 points.
Prediction: Ga Tech


Clemson @ Duke

The Tigers return to Durham where last year they lost on a controversial clock call late in the game. This Clemson team is better than last year’s but so is Duke’s. So far this year, it looks lke Clemson may give the best run the North Carolina or Duke, but they will not have enough on the road. Duke wins by 8-12
Prediction: Duke


Maryland @ North Carolina
North Carolina escaped Atlanta with a win by a Tyler Hansbrough stitch. I think UNC comes out blazing at home showing they are not 2 points away from 2 ACC losses. Maryland will be made into turtle soup. Carolina wins by 15-20.
Prediction: North Carolina


Season: 12-1
ACC: 6-0

Check out BetUs Radio for in depth college basketball info


Expect alot of this from Gary Williams on Saturday

SEC Weekend Predictions

Arkansas @ Georgia
These are two teams that are not playing to their abilities. I think Georgia is playing better than their talent and Arkansas is not playing to theirs. This is a game Arkansas must have if it wants to seriously contend for an SEC title this year. Georgia is very tough at home and I see this one coming down to the end. I like Arkansas in a nail biter by 1-4 points.
Prediction: Arkansas


Kentucky @ Florida
This has been the marquee game in the SEC over the last 5 years, but both teams are way down previous years. Kentucky looks like it might be coming around with a big win Vanderbilt, but then Miss St squashes them. Florida is very tough at home. I like the Gators by 7-10 points.
Prediction: Florida

Ohio State @ Tennessee

The Buckeyes get another chance at the SEC. They lost to the best team in football and they will lose to the best team in basketball. No speed arguments here. Tennessee wins with pressure and depth. Well I guess that is how LSU won. Tennessee wins by 12-15 points.
Prediction: Tennessee

Season: 12-1
SEC: 6-1
Bruce Pearl isn't worried at all about the Big 10

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Midweek Bball Action

Georgia Tech vs North Carolina
Worst meets First in Atlanta. The Tar Heels are coming off a blowout of NC State over the weekend where they refuted the myth that they can’t play defense. The Heels like to run n gun the whole game with the speedy PG Ty Lawson leading the way. Georgia Tech is coming off two losses last week and is getting worse as the season wears on. But they have played a tough schedule thus far and have taken Indiana and Kansas close to the wire.

I look for the Tar Heels to weather the early onslaught of emotion from the crowd and settle into a halftime lead. The Yellow Jackets will have to be on from outside the arc to keep this game close. They must also defend better in transition than they have thus far this season. I like North Carolina pulling away at the end by 12-18.
Pick: North Carolina

Georgia vs Alabama

Both Georgia and Alabama will be looking for their first conference wins on Wednesday. Alabama is led by three double digit scorers in F Richard Hendrix, G Alonzo Gee, and G Mykal Riley; Hendrix is also double digits in rebounding. Georgia is not as fortunate with talent and has had 3 defections/suspensions/dismissals this year. Still, Dennis Felton has kept this club competitive against better competition. Georgia is led by their backcourt and everything runs through PG Sundiata Gaines. G Billy Humphrey is a threat from deep and also to put the ball on the floor.

This Alabama team is not one of the better ones Mark Gottfried has had. Georgia has been tough at Stegeman under Felton even during the leaner years. If Georgia can get Gaines and Humphrey on track then they should win this one by 6-10 points.

Pick: Georgia

Florida at Ole Miss
I am still not exactly sure what to make of Florida this year. The come from behind win at Alabama gave the Gators their first quality win of the year, but calling Alabama quality is a stretch this year. Ole Miss’ loss to Tennessee was closer than most expected and affirmed this team’s strong start is not a fluke. The Rebels are being led by freshman Chris Warren who has scored in double digits each game this season. Ole Miss ranks top 10 nationally in scoring and rebounding.
Ole Miss season has been one to celebrate thus far and keep the beer and hot toddies flowing.
Florida is a young team searching for its identity; Ole Miss has made one under Kennedy. The Rebels are very strong at home (24-1 last 2 years) and will continue that streak. Rebels win by 10-15 points.
Pick: Ole Miss

Duke at Florida State
The Seminoles have played Duke as tough as any team in the ACC over the last few years. Duke has the same record it did last season at this point, but has much more depth this year bolstered by a solid freshman class. The Blue Devils are winning the way we are used to seeing them win - 3 pointers and defense. FSU has the athleticism to hang with Duke, but does not execute as well. Duke wins by 5-9 points.
Pick: Duke

Vanderbilt at Tennessee
Who would have thought the state of Tennessee would have 3 top 20 programs in basketball! The Commodores suffered their first loss of the year in OT last weekend to Kentucky. I don’t know if that loss signals more so that Kentucky is playing better or that Vanderbilt was overrated coming into that game.

This will be a game of contrasting styles and the team who can impose their style on the other will come out on top. Vandy will try and pound it inside to center AJ Ogilvy and Shon Foster. But the Commodores have had trouble with athletic teams. Tennessee wants to run and let their athletic front court and sharp shooting backcourt get some easy shots. The home crowd will give the Vols the edge they need to win by 8-12.
Pick: Tennessee

Season: 7-1
ACC: 4-0
SEC: 3-1

Saturday, January 12, 2008

ACC Weekend Predictions

Now that the awful mess that was ACC football is over, we can turn our attention to the conference's bread and butter, basketball.

NC State @ North Carolina 12:00 ESPN
Favorite: North Carolina
The Tar Heels look to continue their undefeated season with a win over triangle park rival NC State. The Wolfpack have been up and down this season with losses to New Orleans, but wins over Villanova. The Pack are led by freshman JJ Hickson and Brandon Costner down low. This should be an interesting matchup with Tyler Hansbrough down low. Where the Heels big advantage is going to be on the perimeter and especially at PG with Ty Lawson. This game will be a contrast of styles as UNC wants to get up and down the floor while NC State would rather slow it down and make it a half court game. The style that wins out will win the game.
Pick: North Carolina

Georgia Tech @ Miami 2:00 Raycom
Neither team was expected to contend for the conference title this year, but both have been surprising in their play thus far. Georgia Tech is struggling to stay above .500 while Miami has just 1 loss on the year. The Yellow Jackets are suffering from inexperience at the point and a lack of post power due to the loss of Re'sean Dickey for the season due to injury. The Hurricanes are led by G Jack McClintock and a defense allowing opponents to shoot just 38%.
Pick: Miami

Florida State @ Clemson 7:00
Favorite: Clemson
The Tigers are trying to avoid what has happened over the last two seasons - fast start, ugly finish with no NCAA Tournament berth. So far they are succeeding at both. Clemson has lost two in a row after starting 10-1. FSU plays a guard heavy lineup led by Toney Douglas, an Auburn transfer. The Noles are getting it done at the line this year leading the nation with 80% FT shooting. Clemson should be able to attack the Noles lack of size on the inside with James Mays.
Pick: Clemson

Virginia @ Duke 8:00 FSN Sunday
Favorite: Duke
The Cavaliers travel to Duke on Sunday night in the ACC opener for both. These teams are almost mirrors of each other statistically. Both teams score above 80 ppg and allow under 70 ppg. Both allow under 42% shooting by their opponents, but are above 40% themselves from behind the 3 point line. Duke will be without their big man Brian Zoubek who is out with a foot injury. The Cavaliers will need G Sean Singletary to have a big game to pull off the upset.
Pick: Duke

Season: 0-0
ACC: 0-0

SEC Weekend Predictions

This is the first weekend of heavy conference basketball play in the SEC. Basketball is going to work a little different than football as we will start out with just straight up winners predicted.

Auburn at Florida 12Noon Raycom
Favorite: Florida
The Gators come into this game after knocking off Alabama on the road. Gone are the foursome of Noah, Horford, Brewer, and Green, but Florida did return some talent this year lead by Walter Hodge and Marcus Speights. Auburn is coming off a close home loss to Arkansas. The Gators have been very tough at the O-Dome in recent years and I expect nothing different today. Florida should win this one going away.. maybe even allowing you to get in a little nap at the game.

Pick: Florida

Vanderbilt at Kentucky 1:30 CBS Favorite: Kentucky
This game is a reverse of what it should be; Vanderbilt is the ranked, undefeated team while Kentucky is struggling mightily. The Wildcats have lost to teams like
San Diego, Houston, and Gardner Webb already. Billy Gillespie is having a tough time getting Tubby's Smith players to buy into the former Texas A&M coach's system. Vanderbilt has quietly gone undefeated so far and are led by Shon Foster up front and Alex Gordon in the backcourt. I think Kentucky has a long way to go to be competing with undefeated teams in the SEC.
Pick: Vanderbilt

Georgia @ Miss St 2:00 Raycom Favorite: Miss State
The Bulldogs from Georgia are coming off a victory over in-state rival Georgia Tech earlier in the week with G Billy Humphrey leading the way despite a sore knee. Miss State is led by Jamont Gordon on offense and a stingy defense allowing opponents to shoot just 36% from the field. Miss State is just 3-3 at home this year but they defeat Georgia.
Pick: Miss State

Tennessee @ South Carolina 8:00 Fox South Favorite: Tennessee
The Gamecocks have split the last 4 meetings with Tennessee despite the Vols surge near the top of the SEC East. South Carolina likes to put up the 3 ball and has been pretty successful shooting 41% from behind the arc. The Vols will play full court press nearly the entire game putting a lot of pressure on South Carolina's guards. The Vols force over 20 turnovers a game.
Pick: Tennessee

Season: 0-0
SEC: 0-0

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Covering Dixie

Clemson
Clemson rubs it in Highway Style

Clemson's Bowden says his team will eventually make the one big play that it has been lacking

Tigers lose one, keep one:
Davis leaves Clemson for the NFL Draft, but Kelly has a change of heart.

Football Tigers in 07 were good, but not great
Because of academic suspensions that gutted an already slim senior class, coach Tommy Bowden proclaimed Clemson’s bowl game a preview of the 2008 team. Auburn would have used this excuse had they lost.

Charlotte upsets No. 18 Clemson on road
Tigers still hungover from UNC loss on Sunday

Georgia
"JUST LIKE FOOTBALL"
Georgia defeats Georgia Tech. The Bulldogs won by seven and Georgia fans chanted "Just like football!" in the closing seconds. The Bulldogs won on the gridiron in November.

Miami
Crunch time for UM recruits
With signing day in four weeks, UM is making a late push to close out an excellent recruiting class.

LSU
Miles eyes next BCS title already
Flanked by his team's four gleaming national championship trophies, LSU coach Les Miles was already looking for more. Does LSU's trophies compare to Auburn's in 2004.



Georgia Tech
Tech loses Buford LB recruit

Jackets' Peek transferring to Alabama
TE does not translate into triple option offense

Tennessee

QB Mallett leaves Michigan, will transfer
Tennessee really needs a QB like Mallet because things look bleak for the Vols in the East.

Vanderbilt
Vanderbilt WR Bennett headed to NFL
The best player in the SEC that no one outside of the SEC heard of.

Arkansas
McFadden cuffed, released at 'rowdy' bar
The bar was a piano bar. McFadden was defending his brother. What is it with McFadden and Little Rock night clubs? Little Rock must be more happening than I thought.

Florida State
FSU's Hayes will try his luck in NFL Draft
Hayes grew tired of the Tallahassee Police and their "tactics". Bowden was too tough as well.

Ole Miss
Hidden Truth: Ole Miss is as good as its record
Rebels gave Tennessee all they could handle and more. How long does Andy Kennedy stay in Oxford?

North Carolina
Tyler Hansbrough dunks over 7'7" guy that is not French...and Hansbrough walked.


More BCS Wrap Up

Ohio State is ashamed of their players majors
I heard Maurice Clarett took some test over the phone in 2002.

SEC still the best conference... and not just football

Fifteen arrested at OSU after BCS defeat
What is there to do in Ohio in January?

Top 100 stars of the 2007-08 bowl season
My guess is that Ohio State QB Todd Boeckman is not on the list.

Rankings and recaps for all 32 bowls
Including Colin Cowherd's favorite Sponge Bob Bowl Flop

PHOTOS: BCS Championship action

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Basketball Predictions

Conference play is underway in the ACC and about to get underway in the SEC. Here are my predictions for each conference.

ACC
7 NCAA Tournament Teams - UNC, Duke, Clemson, Virginia, Florida State, Miami, NC State
2 Sweet 16 Teams - UNC, Duke
2 Elite 8 Teams - UNC, Duke
1 Final 4 Team - UNC
1 National Champion - UNC
3 NIT Teams - Maryland, Virginia Tech, Boston College
Team W L
North Carolina 13 3
Duke 11 5
Clemson 10 6
Virginia 9 7
Miami 9 7
Florida State 8 8
NC State 7 9
Maryland 7 9
Virginia Tech 6 10
Georgia Tech 6 10
Boston College 6 10
Wake Forest 4 12


SEC
6 NCAA Tournament Teams - Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Ole Miss, Florida, Miss St, Arkansas
2 Sweet 16 Teams - Tennessee, Vanderbilt
1 Elite 8 Team - Tennessee
4 NIT Teams - Kentucky, Alabama, Georgia, LSU
Team W L
East

Tennessee 14 2
Vanderbilt 10 6
Florida 8 8
Kentucky 7 9
Georgia 7 9
South Carolina 5 11
West

Ole Miss 10 6
Miss St 9 7
Arkansas 8 8
Alabama 8 8
LSU 6 10
Auburn 4 12

LSU 1st Team to Win 2 BCS Championships


This picture says it all when it comes to Ohio State vs the SEC.

Monday, January 7, 2008

BCS Championship Preview


LSU Tigers (11-2, 6-2) vs Ohio State Buckeyes (11-2, 7-1)

8:00 ET FOX

Line: LSU -3.5, 48

LSU Tigers
Best Win: v Va Tech 48-7
Worst Loss: vs Arkansas 50-48 OT
Record vs BCS Top 25: 4-0
Schedule Strength: 24th
HC Miles Record in Bowls: 3-2

Ohio State Buckeyes
Best Win: @ Michigan 14-3
Worst Loss: v Illinois 28-21
Record vs BCS Top 25: 1-2
Schedule Strength: T-48th
HC Tressel Record in Bowls: 4-2

For Ohio State to Win:

The Buckeyes will need to take car of the ball against an LSU
team that is +18 in turnover margin this year. Ohio State
needs to give the ball to Chris Wells as much as possible to
control the ball and keep it out of the more explosive
offense’s hands.

Defensively, the Buckeyes should blitz Flynn and Perrilloux
and try force them into quick decisions. Ohio State has 42
sacks on the year and the LSU o-line has given up 29. The
caveat is that both LSU QBs are good scramblers.

For LSU to Win:
The Tigers need to spread the ball on offense. This means two
things: literally spreading the field with formations and
allowing their receivers and back to run in space and to
spread the ball around to all of their playmakers. LSU needs
to keep a balance between Flynn and Perrilloux to allow both
of them to run and pass because they are both capable of it.

Defensively, LSU should try and make Ohio State play
left-handed. The Buckeyes are much better at running than
passing and LSU has allowed just one 100 yard rusher this
year. Stack the line and make QB Todd Boeckman and receivers
Hartline and Robiskie beat your D-line and DBs.

Questions:
LSU has not been healthy since early October… Can they regain
that early season form?

I don’t think so. It is hard to
regain that kind of chemistry this late in the year.

How does the coaching transition of Bo Pellini affect LSU?
This is a big distraction for LSU and has shown not to work in
past national title games.


How does the crowd affect Ohio State?
This will be the closest thing to home game for LSU outside of Baton Rouge.
The crowd gave LSU a 6.5 dog to Oklahoma a few years back a
big advantage. LSU made big plays in that game to increase
that advantage so Ohio State cannot allow those, especially
early.

Does the 50+ day layoff effect Ohio State like last year?
Not as much. Tressel changed his approach this year including arriving at the site later. The Buckeyes learned what not to do last year.

Prediction:
Everyone started out picking LSU in this game because of the
SEC’s speed advantage. As we get closer to the game, some
analysts are coming back to the Buckeyes with motivation as
the key factor. I think the motivation of being disrespected
goes out the window the first time you get clock cleaned and
it comes down to talent and preparation. LSU has the talent
advantage, but Ohio State has a big preparation edge. I
really think Pellini’s imminent departure will have a big
effect on the LSU defense. I like Ohio State in the upset
that is much higher scoring than people predict.
Ohio State 31 LSU 28

Ohio State Wins, Covers, Over


Sunday, January 6, 2008

BCS Championship Stats

Stats
LSU Total Offense: 448.2 (21st)
Ohio State Total Defense: 225.3 (1st)

LSU Offensive PPG: 38.7 (12th)
Ohio State Defensive PPG: 10.7 (1st)

Ohio State Total Offense: 397.1 (59th)
LSU Total Defense: 283.8 (3rd)

Ohio State Offensive PPG: 32.0 (36th)
LSU Defensive PPG: 19.6 (20th)

Ohio St Rush offense: 201.3 ypg
LSU Rush defense: 103.1 ypg

LSU Rush offense: 218.9 ypg
Ohio St Rush defense: 77.1 ypg

Ohio St Pass offense: 195.8 ypg
LSU Pass defense: 180.8 ypg

LSU Pass offense: 229.2 ypg
Ohio St Pass defense: 148.2 ypg

Ohio St Sacks: 42
LSU Sacks allowed: 29

LSU Sacks: 32
Ohio St Sacks allowed: 14

Ohio St 3rd-down offense: 47.6% converted
LSU 3rd-down defense: 36% converted

LSU 3rd-down offense: 45% converted
Ohio St 3rd-down defense: 30.7% converted

LSU Turnover margin: plus-18 (forced 33, committed 15)
Ohio St Turnover margin: minus-1 (forced 18, committed 19)

Thursday, January 3, 2008

BCS Championship Game Notes - Jan 3


Bo Pellini has acceted the head coaching job at Nebraska, but will be coaching the LSU defense in against Ohio State. Mark Richt did the same thing in 2000 and doesn't think Pellini should do both.

For all of the flack the Big 10 takes, they did have the best record of any conference against BCS teams.

CBS recaps Les Miles crazy play calls this year. Onions!

Ohio State is giving players a DVD full of analysts who are doubting the Buckeyes. So far in the New Years Days Bowls, the good teams who are being undermined are winning. Notice I said good teams, so that doesn't include Arkansas, Hawaii, and Illinois.

Losing last year helps the Buckeyes this year.

Fox Sports attempts to break down the key matchups in the BCS Championship Game.

What I Am Reading

The Bowl All-Suspended Team...

I Am Not Piling on Notre Dame... I swear

Bowls are becoming a losing affair for many schools While those running the bowls are making out like bandits.

Need a recap of the best moments of the season? Here they are!

Now we know why Reggie Bush played so poor this year.

Bobby Bowden didn't like the officiating in the Music City Bowl

Clemson fans say it is all about the Thomas Jefferson's

This kid is being taught early about SEC rivalries.

Kirby Freeman is transferring from Miami leaving the Canes with just 1 QB on scholarship in the Spring.

MapGameDay.com has a great map of each teams roster showing where each player is from. They also have the distances traveled by each team in non-conference play since 1998. The team that has traveled the most, Notre Dame. And the least is Georgia who has traveled less than 400 miles total in 10 seasons, but does play at Arizona St next year.

Three arrested in the assault of UNC football players.

West Virginia names interim coach Bill Stewart as head coach after the Mountaineers stun Oklahoma. I like West Virginia and hope things work out for them, but I can't help but think of Larry Coker.

Clemson and Alabama will meet in the Georgia Dome in 2008. The Dome wants to get an annual intersection matchup going forward.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Orange Bowl Preview


Virginia Tech vs Kansas 8:00 ET
Miami, Fl
Line: VT -3, 53



Virginia Tech Hokies (11-2, 7-1)
The Hokies started off the season slow against East Carolina and were blown out by LSU on the road. After getting their head on straight, they suffered just one loss the rest of the year, but avenged that in the ACCCG. The Hokies were rated #1 by several computer polls at the end of the year.
Best Win: vs BC 30-16

Worst Loss: @ LSU 7-48
Record vs Bowl Teams: 6-2

Record vs BCS Top 25: 2-2
Schedule Strength: 1st
HC Beamer Record in Bowl Games: 6-8

Kansas Jayhawks (11-1, 7-1)
The improbable run of the Kansas Jayhawks landed them in a BCS Bowl despite not winning their conference or division. The Jayhawks were the last undefeated team from a BCS Conference before they fell to rival Missouri. Kansas displayed a high powered offense that scored over 50 points five times this year including 76 vs Nebraska.
Best Win: @ Texas A&M 19-11
Worst Loss: vs Missouri 28-38

Record vs Bowl Teams: 4-1
Record vs BCS Top 25: 0-1
Schedule Strength: 74th
HC Mangino Record in Bowl Games: 1-1

Va Tech Offensive Game Plan:

1. Try to establish the run game. The Jayhawks rank #1 in the Big 12 against the run and hae allowed just 2 teams above 100 yards. The Hokies have struggled running the ball this year.
2. Use speed advantage. The fastest team Kansas played all year was able to move the ball vertically with their wideouts. Try and get Eddie Royal in some 1 on 1 coverage.
3. Keep that KU offense on the sidelines. Use the run game, short passes, whatever to limit the Fighting Mangino's time with the ball.

Kansas Defensive Game Plan:

1. Make VT one dimensional. KU is very good at stopping the run and VT is not very good running the ball.
2. Get pressure on Sean Glennon. Glennon has played much better in the 2nd half of the year, but his history says that he gets rattled.
3. No kicks blocked. Not really defense, but it will be important for the Jayhawks.

Kansas Offensive Game Plan:

1. Don't be afraid to run. VT is even better than KU at stopping the run. The Jayhawks are very good at running the ball and need to play their game, not Va Tech's
2. Keep Reasing clean. Va Tech is very good at rushing the passer with just 4 or 5 defenders. Chris Ellis is the best of the bunch. KU QB Todd Reasing is very dangerous in the pocket, but needs time.

Va Tech Defensive Game Plan:
1. Try to make KU play left handed. It is tough to determine whether the Jayhawks are better at running or passing. Va Tech is better at stopping the run so the Hokies should try to force the Jayhawks to pass
2. Capitalize on turnovers
Reasing only threw 4 INTs before throwing 2 against Missouri. With the Hokies limited offensive abilities, they need to score TDs on short fields, not field goals.

Motivation:
Many are saying Kansas should not be in this game. They have had to listen to that all week despite winning 11 games this year and blowing out many of their opponents. Everybody points to the fact that Kansas played just 1 team in the Top 25 and lost while Va Tech played the nation's toughest schedule. Virginia Tech's defense should be challenged by playing such a high powered offense. The Hokies have made the reputation on defense and special teams and don't want to be burned like they were against LSU.

Prediction:
I would say Virginia Tech in a landslide, but the Hokies are not a dominating team to blow out good teams. Kansas will be able to move the ball some on Va Tech, but Reasing will spend much of the night on his back.

Virginia Tech 27 Kansas 21
Virginia Tech Wins, Covers, Under

New Years Day Bowl Thoughts

Rose Bowl
Did anyone catch the shot of the USC bus on ABC when they arrived at the Rose Bowl? I literally thought the bus was going to tip over.

USC has only one weakness and that is covering the deep ball. They debunked the myth that they can't stop mobile QBs.

USC and Georgia would have been a serious, serious game. If they played in the Rose, I would have put USC at -2.

Outback Bowl
The Tennessee offense sputtered for most of the game. I think David Cutcliffe's and WR coach Trooper Taylor's imminent departures did have an effect on the Vols.

Cotton Bowl
It seemed every ball bounced Missouri's way. Every fumble or loose ball bounced right into a Tiger's arms more often than not.

The interview of Bobby Petrino was classic. I don't know he sells to recruits with that personality. I got the feeling there was a lot of tension in that booth especially with Pat Summerall, a former Arkansas player.

Tough way for Darren McFadden to go out... if that is his last game as a Razorback.

Gator Bowl
The stadium was a sea of orange, black, and mostly teal from the empty seats.

The game was probably the best of the day that nobody watched.

Feel bad for the backup UVA QB. Comes in for hurt Jameel Seweel trying to get a first downs to run down the clock and he fumbles inside his own 5.

Capitol One Bowl
Easily the most surprising result of the day. I really didn't think Michigan would pull that one out after two turnovers inside the Florida 5. I thought it would be high scoring, but Florida did not play as well offensively as I thought.

Tim Tebow was obviously thinking about other things than Michigan in that game. Tebow looked slow and a bit timid at times. I think his broken right hand was not feeling well and the Heisman dinner circuit caught up to the sophomore.

The announcers kept mentioning Michigan's defensive coordinator statement of Michigan being an good to avearge tackling team during they and they needed to be great against Florida. This was the key for the defense. I thought Florida would be able to make big plays in space, but the Wolverine defenders closed very well.

The x factor for Michigan was the health of their stars. Chad Henne and Mario Manningham out played Tebow and Percy Harvin. The Michigan offense finally looked like everyone thought it would at the beginning of the year. Chad Henne looked like the Heisman winner, not Tebow.

Florida may have lost their chance at the preseason #1 spot which as we found out this year is very important.

Sugar Bowl
Florida's loss was Georgia's gain in regards to next year. Georgia will definitely be top 5 preseason barring spring injuries.

The curiousity of this game drew a lot of viewers, but it became apparent very early that Hawaii was overmatched physically.

Mark Richt going for it on 4th down late in the game.

Strength of Schedule matters...alot