Yup, it was a difficult weekend… but that doesn’t mean we can’t have a spot of fun, right?
Not a good Saturday around the old Casa Del Mali, which started when Nebraska found out that the option doesn’t work against a defense with speed. This would normally be the part where I pointed out that having a freshman quarterback as your starter is never a good idea, but I really like not sleeping on the couch. What was particularly surprising was the successes that the Longhorns had against the Blackshirts- and this is a rebuilding year for Mack Brown’s team.
The missus was able to keep her sense of humor throughout, though, commenting that she wished that there were three more Acho brothers playing so there could be Acho Cinco. Your humble correspondent is grateful that his internal filter kept the “Nebraska can’t block the two that do exist” comment inside his head.
Wait- I just typed that. Crap. Well, the couch is closer to the TV…
Also in LaLa land, Southern Cal absolutely destroyed Cal. Bears, are you sure you want to cut baseball and your national champion rugby program to save this? I’d love to see the Trojans back into a conference title, which would make the bowl ban that much sweeter. Although, I’m sure that we’d see some “undefeated in bowl play” t-shirts around the beaches and traffic jams. Read More
I think their offense starts with the toughness that their quarterback shows. Their quarterback stands in there and holds that ball until the last second when the receiver is ready to break and runs when he has to run, kind of plays a little bit in the shadow of their rush game, which their rush game is — it deserves all the kudos that it gets, but their quarterback just kind of whatever the team needs him to do, he does, and he’s a veteran. He’s got a veteran offensive line who are very, very physical. Their tight end position is always one of the deepest and best utilized tight end corps in the Big Ten.
Well, they were going to be ready if we were 15th. I mean, I don’t know that that will change their readiness. What’s most critical is our readiness and our preparation and then how we handle the adversity and how we handle the situation there. There will be times when you can’t hear. There will be times when you’re not in the same comfort zone as you are back in your own meeting rooms at halftime or whatever, but I’m not sure that anything in terms of the rankings are going to change. I mean, Wisconsin is going to be ready, so I don’t know that that will change it.
Hard. Hard and long.
Yesterday, Jim Tressel was awarded this by the University:
And today, the Buckeyes were named the number one team in the country by both the Associate Press and the Coaches Polls.
Being number one in October is nice, but there’s a lot of football yet to be played. Tress himself said (emphasis added):
“You take a look at the Top 10 week to week and the precarious nature of any ranking is obvious – just review the change in the makeup of the Top 10 between the beginning of the season until now. The Buckeyes know what’s it’s like to have a target on our back, especially since we are now well into Big Ten play. We expect that every team will give us its best shot. How we respond will determine our ultimate ranking.“
However, it would be special, to say the least, if the season also included another trophy along the way-
I thought the offensive line had a great challenge. It was kind of like one of those you get into a stalemate and you get into it, and you get into it, fortunately by the fourth quarter we won that stalemate. Probably didn’t win it early. Do they feel good about the fact that we didn’t win it throughout? I would hope that the competitor in all of us, we’d all like everything to work all the time, but you could see them on film. They’re a good football team. Especially in the trenches.
I thought they did a nice job of working the safeties down into the box, both run and pass, they tricked us the one time and robbed that little spot route and it was a similar coverage, though, when we threw the corner route behind it for the touchdown, but they got us the first time with it, and that also allowed them to have those extra guys in the box. That has a little bit to do with where the line goes toward where they work up the linebackers and safeties sometimes, but, no, it was — it was a reality, man, that was a tough one.
And now we have a chance to come home, play against an Indiana team that they threw it 64 times last week, 98 plays, you know, those receivers are veterans. The quarterback, of course, is a veteran. Their running back does a nice job in protection, and the amount that they run him, he’s very good at it and he’s a good receiver as well.
Defensively they struggled against a very fast, fast offense that Michigan brought at them. And special teams-wise, their return men, they’ve always done a good job on kickoff return against us and Doss is back there again.
I wish we had more balls. That sounds terrible.
ESPN has come to their senses and acknowledged that the Bucks got hosed in the recent polls: OSU Hate, OU Love Creates Double Standard.
Another big-name has been just as disappointing in big games, if not worse. And yet that team continues to escape the hate. Meet the Oklahoma Sooners. They’re apparently made out of Teflon.
Let’s review some of the similarities between Ohio State and Oklahoma:
- Ohio State has a three-game losing streak in BCS bowls; Oklahoma has dropped five consecutive BCS bowls, including games in each of the last three seasons.
- Ohio State suffered two blowout losses in the national title game; Oklahoma fell to USC 55-19 in the 2005 Orange Bowl, which gave the Trojans the national championship. The Sooners also suffered a 20-point loss to a West Virginia team that had just lost its head coach in the 2008 Fiesta Bowl. And they lost to non-BCS Boise State.
- Both teams have had Heisman Trophy-winning quarterbacks (Troy Smith and Sam Bradford) stumble in the national title game.
- Both teams have taken care of business in their leagues. Ohio State has won or shared the last four Big Ten titles. Oklahoma has won the last three Big 12 championships.
Despite the parallels, Ohio State continues to be the nation’s piñata, while Big Game Bob Stoops and the Sooners get a pass. The latest example arrived Sunday, as Ohio State moved down two spots to No. 13 in the AP Poll, while Oklahoma moved up two spots to No. 10.
So, ESPN, welcome to the party. Seeings as it’s mostly your networks’ fault that this happens, why don’t you do something about it?
Arrr, yesterday’s games fell on the national holiday o’ “Talk Like a Pirate Day“. Should we be surprised, then, that the upset o’ the day happened at a place whar people show up in boats? Ahoy, and it warn’t the team that we expected t’ see success. In Piratey news, East Carolina lost to North Carolina. Great Neptune’s mandibles!!
Ok, that’s enough.
But, like TLAPD, the U$C choke to an unranked conference team should become a national holiday, since it happens more frequently than leap year. And given that 5 of the last 6 of these losses have come on the road in the Northwet, there must be something more significant going on. Perhaps the Curse of DB Cooper or something.
Nevertheless, the Trojan Tragedy has sent ripples throughout the college football world. In Los Angeles, fingers are pointing at Surfer Pete, asking again why the coach is unable to keep his team focused. Granted, the starting QB and safety were banged up, but given U$C’s deep pockets of five star talent you’d think they’d be able to beat a team that was 1-15 in their last sixteen games. A team of young men recruited by Ty Willingham. Hmmm… where have we heard that before?
While a post game let-down is to be expected, it didn’t hamper Ohio State who headed to Cleveland and shut out the #5 team in NCAA offense. Toledo, fresh off of their clown stomping of Colorado, was held to 210 total yards and 13 yards rushing. Ohio State’s rebound included 370 yards of offense from “Lebron in Cleats”. Mich1gAAn fans? That’s how you beat Toledo.
To celebrate the “Mistake by the Lake” and the Ohio State recovery, the AP poll decided to drop USC from 3 to 12, and bump tOSU from 11 to… 13. The Buckeyes were jumped by Chokelahoma, who took care of Tulsa on Saturday. However, the team that handed OU their loss got pummeled at home; BYU lost 54-28 to Free Shoes University. And yet, the Sooners didn’t suffer due to the loss of the team that beat them… This, among other things, is the reason that we need to do away with polls until October. But you knew this already.
Around the mid-west, Mich1gAAn managed to cruise against a directional school after struggling in the first half. Notre Ame was the beneficiary of back to back boneheaded decisions by MAChigan State’s sophomore QB, first overthrowing a wide open receiver in the end zone, then sealing the game with an interception at or near the endzone. Penn State continued their “Hosting Hostess” tour, although they did allow Temple to score on their vaunted defense.
SEC action witnessed Auburn holding off the weather and WVa (rats- a burning couch goes great with rain), Arkansas falling to Georgia in a shootout, Calipari’s scandal defeating Pitino’s scandal, and Florida eventually getting around to beating Tennessee in the “our orange is uglier than yours” festival. MSU beat Vandy (really?), and LSU squashed some other team from Cajunland. Old Miss and Alabama combined for 105 points in their wins.
The Huskers lost a well fought road game against a very good Hokie team in the final minutes. True conversation between my beloved and I: Her- “Wow, it’s such a tough loss when you’re winning the whole game and then it falls apart in the last seconds”. Me- “I wouldn’t know what that was like at all.”
Other Big 12 action: Rice couldn’t stick to TBPU, Kansas State blew their one chance to shine in the Rose Bowl, Colorado won while Baylor fell to UConn, Rock Chalk pounded the Cameron Crazies, and the Pirate Cap’n missed out on an opportunity to do Blackbeard proud.
On the Left Coast, toOSU played football from Ohio with predictable results, Washington State won (I know, right?), and Oregon unveiled yet another hideous ensemble in their upset of the Utes. Cal’s Jahvid Best looked to be just that against a chippy Minnesota Team opening their new stadium. Arizona evened the “Big T1e1n Pac Ten challenge” at one each by falling to Iowa.
Elsewheres- TCU continues to roll, Syracuse beat Northwestern in this week’s “They have football teams?” bowl, and Pepperdine remains undefeated. Oh, and this has to be the worst idea of the week- UCF planned a tribute for the African American members of Buffalo’s 1958 team, who rejected a bid to the Tangerine Bowl because their darker hued teammates weren’t allowed to play. Coincidentally, UCF also scheduled a “White Out” for that date, and asked their fans to come dressed in all white. Good thinking.
Small schools update: Bacone got fried by Howard Payne, 56-7.
This week’s games include an Ohio State/Illinois matchup that will prove how much Ron Zook can screw up his team if given a buy week, and an important Kentucky/Florida clash, if the Gators are healthy enough to show up. Maybe St. Tebow can heal them… although, I’m not sure I’d trust his medical experience. Mich1gAAn hosts Indiana, and Kansas welcomes Bret Favrere’s alma mater. Cal and Oregon square off, Nebraska gets whatever’s left from LSU’s blowout, and the marquee game is Miami and Va Tech in a Big lEast showdown. Texas plays UTEP, TBPU welcomes Eddie Robinson’s school, and TCU travels to Clemson. Washington faces off against Stanford, while the Cougs get to be the rebound team for U$C. Notre Ame has to face a Purdon’t team that just lost to a MAC team… That’s not going to end well.
And now, some inspiration for those underachievers in Block O:
High school students. Just sayin’.
The Associated Press poll has just been released, and the Buckeyes are ranked #6 in the nation. The top 7 are unchanged from the USA Today Coaches Poll.
The entire poll can be found here.
The new rankings are out. No major surprises. Buckeyes are 10th.
But this just in…..The University of Michigan is now the 4th best team in the state of Michigan.
|AP Top 25|
|1. Alabama (44) 10-0 1,604|
|2. Texas Tech (21) 10-0 1,574|
|3. Florida 8-1 1,467|
|4. Texas 9-1 1,437|
|5. Oklahoma 9-1 1,375|
|6. USC 8-1 1,311|
|7. Penn State 9-1 1,161|
|8. Utah 10-0 1,157|
|9. Boise State 9-0 1,110|
|10. Ohio State 8-2 1,009|
|11. Oklahoma State 8-2 963|
|12. Missouri 8-2 913|
|13. Georgia 8-2 880|
|14. Ball State 9-0 677|
|15. TCU 9-2 623|
|16. Brigham Young 9-1 602|
|17. North Carolina 7-2 597|
|18. Michigan State 9-2 584|
|19. LSU 6-3 552|
|20. Florida State 7-2 380|
|21. Pittsburgh 7-2 318|
|22. Cincinnati 7-2 269|
|23. Oregon State 6-3 124|
|24. South Carolina 7-3 117|
|25. Tulsa 8-1 84|
Others Receiving Votes
California 73, Virginia Tech 44, AIRFORCE 40, Georgia Tech 29, Arizona 7, Oregon 6, WESTRN MICHIGAN 6, West Virginia 5, CENTRL MICHIGAN 5, Iowa 5, Miami (FL) 5, Northwestern 3, Boston College 3, Maryland 3, South Florida 1, Wake Forest 1, Kansas 1.
Yes, that’s right. Michigan State is ranked 18th. Western Michigan is #32. Central Michigan is #34.
UM is unranked. Three teams in Michigan are better than them.