Sunday, September 18, 2005

Random football thoughts

1) Tennessee vs. Florida: I think this result is actually best for Georgia. I thought Tennessee was probably the better team, but their mistakes and coaching cost them. Before any Florida fans jump on me, I think Florida is very good, but the injuries suffered by Florida might cost them down the road. So a weakened team comes away with the win, and what I think is the better team has a blemish on their record. Why do I think Tennessee was better? Defense is as good as I've seen all year. Seriously fast and strong. Good up front and in the secondary. Kept Florida in check, especially running the ball. Plus, Tennessee was successful running the ball early. The stats don't show it because they were forced to throw the ball late. But Florida had trouble stopping Riggs. Tennessee didn't stick with the run as much as I'd have, and Florida made lots of big 3rd down stops (give them credit). Errors on special teams really came at the worst possible times for Tennessee. The other issue, and the one the pundits jump on, is the QB rotation. Unlike many, I don't really have a problem with having 2 quarterbacks. How you use them is a big deal, though. I think that it's OK to play both, but if it's clear that one guy has it and the other doesn't, you let the guy having the good game stay in. In UT's opener, it was obvious that Clausen was having a better game than Ainge. In this game, it was obvious that Ainge was having the better game. When you've made it clear who's better, you leave him in. Fulmer didn't and I think it cost them. Both these teams look better than UGA right now, but with injuries and a tougher schedule than Georgia has, I think the East is still wide open.

2) I think Virginia Tech is the class of the ACC, and probably by a decent distance.

3) I'm thinking Oklahoma pulls it all together just in time to beat Texas. Good win for UCLA though.

4) Michigan State will play in the Capital One Bowl at worst. Notre Dame's offense is really good, so don't worry about giving up the points. The key is that Michigan State will be able to outscore most Big Ten teams.

5) Southern Cal is very good.

6) It's funny how most SEC fans like Vanderbilt, or at least nobody hates them. Most people like that they're having a good year. I'm already worried about Georgia-Vandy. They usually play us close (we play down to their level). I do hope they make a bowl game.

7) Frank Solich's antediluvian coaching strategies outscored (sort of) Bill Callahan's new-fangled attack against a common opponent. What does that say? Pittsburgh sucks.

8) Penn State will be a big story by the middle of next month, then forgotten about by the middle of the next month.

9) Probably my biggest annoyance of scoring update announcers, specifically Brando and Rece Davis, is their tendency to call a particular team the "Fighting [name of coach]s". Yesterday I heard one of them call Illinois the Fighting Zooks, Kansas is the Fighting Manginos, and Ohio the Fighting Frank Soliches. We know who the coaches are. You get paid to know who they are, so you don't need to show off. Just show the highlights and quit acting cute. Generally I like Davis but I'm annoyed by Brando all the time, but that Fighting Frank Soliches line was just bush league, Rece.

ADDED: 10) Anyone else notice that on the Florida-Tennessee broadcast yesterday Verne Lundquist was ragging on (some might say "busting his balls") Dallas Baker for the penalty at the end of last year's game at the exact moment that he gets hit right in the dick and starts holding his crotch and wailing in pain. Voodoo Verne!