Alabama

2017 College Football National Championship: Thoughts On Nick Saban, The Game, and How Kirby Smart Has Georgia Primed For Success

smart-uga

Kirby Smart learned one more lesson from Nick Saban during the National Championship Game Monday night. (Photo: Curtis Compton/Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

A friend of mine texted me just after halftime of the National Championship game between Georgia and Alabama and asked me a question.

“You think Alabama really switches [Quarterbacks]?” (more…)

College Football 2015: Nick Saban Has A Point With NFL Draft Argument, Unfortunately Nick Saban Made It

When Nick Saban speaks, it's usually wise to listen.

When Nick Saban speaks, it’s usually wise to listen. This year’s SEC Media Days in Hoover, Alabama were no different. (USATSI)

SEC Media Days never disappoint.

There were plenty of great quotes to go around this year in Hoover, Alabama and most of it was covered quite nicely by one of my favorite sites, Saturday Down South (seriously check them out).

One quote from the week that caught my attention was from Alabama head football coach, Nick Saban. Saban commented on why he had such a difficult time preparing his players for their national semifinal game against eventual national champion Ohio State.  (more…)

Locker Talk Episode 20! College Football National Signing Day Redux

Urban Meyer brought a top-5 recruiting class to Ohio State

Urban Meyer brought a top-5 recruiting class to Ohio State

The Ladysportswriter Kim Nash joins us to talk about the aftermath of college football National Signing day. We’ll discuss who made strides and who lost ground, as well as the funniest moments from the day. We Will also put this day in perspective for fans. Join the conversation Friday at 1 p.m. EST and feel free to call in (773) 897-6129

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/thelocker/2013/02/08/locker-talk-national-signing-day-redux

Heisman Voters Picked The Wrong Guy

This man is the most outstanding in college football

This man is the most outstanding in college football

Lets get one thing straight, I like Johnny Manziel. I think he’s an exciting player who put together one of the best seasons a first year player could ever put together.

But Manti Te’o was the most outstanding player in college football this season. Period. (more…)

Locker Talk Episode Eight : College Football Thursday! (11/1/2012)

The Lady Sportswriter Kim Nash joined me on Thursday for our weekly discussion about all things College Football. Take a listen as we reviewed the biggest match-ups this weekend, BCS possibilities, last weekends ramifications on the title picture, and if Aaron Murray really is the ONLY option worth considering at Georgia? Join us every Thursday at 1 pm and call in at (773) 897-6129.

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/thelocker/2012/11/01/locker-talk-college-football-thursday

NCAA Football: Why Am I Anti-Playoff in College Football? Don’t Get Me Started!

College football has their playoff. They also have a huge headache coming in 2014.

For some, this is seen as the answer to all of college football’s problems. It will determine the “true” national champion. All a playoff really does, in the case of the proposed four-team format, is leave the door wide open for a larger debate and personal agendas. (more…)

National Signing Day 2012: Top Five Recruiting Classes; Best And Worst Of The Rest

These are my top-5 recruiting classes of 2012:

1.) University of Alabama: Impact Player-Landon Collins: Sadly another case where “parents gone wild” overshadowed a recruits hard work. In any case Collins (ESPN150 #6/Dutchtown High School, Geismar, LA) has off the charts ability in the secondary and is a huge pickup for the Tide who took the #1 recruit out of the state of Louisiana

2.) Florida State University: Impact Player- Mario Edwards: It seems Florida State is selling something serious about Tallahassee because the Seminoles very easily could have been number one after signing Edwards (ESPN150 #1/Billy Ryan High School, Denton, TX) but were second due to some commits who chose elsewhere.

3.) Ohio State University: Impact Player-Noah Spence: Urban Meyer welcomed himself to Columbus in a big way. His impact is felt immediately with a top-five class that included defensive end Noah Spence (ESPN150 #4/Bishop McDevitt High School, Harrisburg, PA). Spence will have an immediate impact on a defense that should be much improved with the addition of defensive minded Urban Meyer calling the shots. Sprinkle in a slew of four-star recruits (including ESPN150 #65  defensive end Adolphus Washington) and you have the makings of an SEC team in the Big Ten. Scary stuff.

4.) University of Georgia: Impact Player-Keith Marshall: Mark Richt and his group are back at it. Most people don’t realize that Richt has produced top-five or top-10 recruiting classes just about every year he’s been in Athens. Problem is Steve Spurrier said it best when asked what happens to them once they get there. Well those times need to end in a hurry. Georgia had a nice season and a good run to their division title. Richt, though, is still in need of some big wins next season in order to prove they are capable of consistent contention for not only the conference but the national title. That said Georgia did a fantastic job of filling needs at running back (Keith Marshall ESPN150#5), offensive line (John Theus ESPN150#28), and on defense ( OLB Harvey-Clemons ESPN150#17, DT Jonathan Taylor ESPN150#53, DE Jordan Jenkins ESPN150#67,  and DT John Atkins ESPN150#119). Credit goes to Todd Grantham for the boost he is giving this program.

5.) University of Michigan: Impact Player-Terry Richardson: Brady Hoke, coming off a Sugar Bowl win for “Big Blue” is continuing momentum into recruiting season. He locked up corner Terry Richardson (ESPN150#68/Cass Technical High School, Detroit, MI) as he will slide right into an already stout defense. I am concerned about the lack of a quarterback pickup this class as they ranked 93rd nationally in passing. While Robinson gets it done with his legs they may want to look towards a pro-style quarterback with Urban Meyer setting up shop in Columbus. One dimensional offenses don’t work against his defenses. 

Best Of The Rest:

Texas, Florida, USC, Oregon, and Stanford

Works In Progress:

LSU, South Carolina, Virginia Tech, and Penn State

Things I Took Away From The Weekend That Was In College Football

College footballs National Champion was crowned meaning the real fun begins for programs across the country (recruiting!). Here is a look back and a few thoughts from the weekend (week) that was in college football.

  1. Alabama is the no-doubt-about-it best team in the country: What I witnessed last night was a demolition. Nick Saban put together a game plan that not only beat LSU, but broke down every facet of their game and made it look as though the number one team in the country didn’t belong. I joked with a friend of mine that people on Twitter were talking about LSU like you would an Ole Miss. Think about the numbers: one penalty, two third down conversions allowed, and almost four times the yardage (384-92). 92 yards of total offense for the Tigers. unreal performance. Was it the shootout that most in the ESPN era want? No. but if you appreciate great defense (and trust me it wins championships) then this was something to behold from Alabama last night.
  2. No one was beating either of these teams last night: I’ve seen Mike Gundy changing his tune a bit about playing for the national title. he went from saying they were the most deserving teams to play for it to saying I think we could have scored on them. Okay that is fair, maybe Oklahoma State could have scored on them. But notice he didn’t say “I think we could have beat Alabama” only “we could have put up “some” points against them. That’s how good these teams are. The challenge is no longer “could we beat them” but “can we score on them.” Folks, fans talk like that. I used to always wonder “could I score a point on Roger Federer?” Maybe, but as an athlete at the highest level is it more important to get there and have your kicks with a score or win the whole thing? Would fans have been happier seeing LSU or Alabama play someone else and made the game look easy? I promise you this: Stanford, Oklahoma State, Oregon, West Virginia, Georgia Southern, Indianapolis Colts, St. Louis Rams it doesn’t matter. Last night the two best teams in the country played for the title and the winner put on a show. Plus one’s and playoffs are fun for argument sake, but realistically if you look back at the last seven years the SEC has won who has a legitimate gripe that the deserving team from that conference didn’t earn it? If you do, let me know. I am ready with stats in hand. Which brings me to my next point…
  3. Does anyone have a legitimate shot at stopping the SEC in 2012-2013: I know a guy right now that if he is reading this his grin is more of an ear-to-ear smile. One of my dark horse picks for the national title next year is USC. They have everything you need to keep up with the big boys down South. They have a defense that is just as strong and just as fast. They have an offense that can compliment that defense and keep the opposing team off the field for a while. Matt Barkley had a stretch at the end of last season against Oregon, Stanford, Washington, Colorado and UCLA where he threw for 20 touchdowns and just three interceptions. He’s good and only going to be better. Outside of USC I can see an improved Oregon team as well as West Virginia if they continue their ascent. Outside of those teams you will be hard pressed to find a program that can take on anyone from dixie.

It really was a fun season. As always it was full of debates, great plays and cool moments. Of course college football (like any sport) never really ends but I will say I can’t wait until kickoff next August. 

Five Things I Took Away From The Weekend In College Football

Some of my thoughts on College Football’s happenings this past weekend:

  1. LSU is the slam dunk #1 team in the country: I don’t think there is anyone who can argue that sentiment as they not only ran the table in the SEC, but they also beat the top teams in the SEC (three times), Pac-12 (Oregon), and the Big East (West Virginia). They did it in such a convincing fashion that few can see any way they lose the National Championship to Alabama. Which brings me to my next point…
  2. Alabama should not be playing for the National Championship: Yes they are probably the second best team in the country. Yes they did go 11-1 this year with their only loss being to the aforementioned juggernaut from Baton Rouge. but they failed to do two things. Win their division and/or conference. Oklahoma State is the deserving participant to play against LSU in the Superdome in January. People who scream that Alabama is the clear number one be careful what you say. looking at the top offenses in the country Oklahoma State played three of them and held them to a combined 63 points. And although their only loss came to Iowa State, something should be said for their efforts against the top teams. 
  3. Georgia has the potential to be scary good in 2012: I’m allowed to show a little home state love to the Dawgs. After all their defense, which is ranked fourth nationally, held the number one team in the country to ZERO first downs or scores for an entire half. LSU’s offense looked so bad that should missed scoring opportunities by Malcom Mitchell and Tavarres King not been floundered LSU is looking at a switch in quarterbacks, a 21-or-24 to nothing deficit and all of a sudden a run first team is forced to pass their way out of trouble. That being said Georgia is returning a plethora of their defensive stars next year, including Bacarri Rambo, Alec Ogletree, John Jenkins, Jarvis Jones, and Cornelius Washington. On offense Aaron Murray knows what he has to do in the off-season and that is, work on his accuracy. The Sophomore who threw for 32 touchdowns is all upside, and with the potential number one running back in the country set to sign and possibly pick Georgia they’re looking like the sexy pick to return, and possibly win, the SEC.
  4. Virginia Tech belongs anywhere but a BCS bowl: By my calculation Virginia Tech lost to Clemson by a combined score of 61-13 in their two meetings this year, didn’t win the ACC title and narrowly escaped the jaws of defeat against East Carolina, Miami, Georgia Tech and UNC. For that they are rewarded the Sugar Bowl? The reason “they travel well” tells me all I need to know about the decision to place them there. The BCS has no idea either. TCU, Boise State, Kansas State, Georgia, and Michigan State all deserved that bid before Virginia Tech. In that order. So the fact we will be seeing “Beamer ball” on New Year’s day doesn’t sit well with a very large portion of the country.
  5. Has anyone laid a bigger egg than Houston?: You have to wonder what is going through the mind of sixth-year eligible Case Keenum right now. You’re (12-0) and steam rolling to a BCS bowl and your draft stock is rising with each record breaking yard. Then you have a fall so hard the onle person who could possibly understand is Colt Brennan. BCS glory, conference millions, and personal fortune all had to be weighing on his mind during that 49-28 drubbing at the hands of Southern Mississippi. 
  6. **Extra thought** On Pac-12 championship: I’m 99 percent sure that when they drew up this situation they weren’t envisioning the first Pac-12 championship game to be such a mismatch as to render it more of a forgone conclusion than a contest. While UCLA gave it their best shot, Oregon proved too much for the Bruins to handle. Two things are very obvious: UCLA has a long way to go before it can be considered a conference contender again; and LaMichael James might very well be the most exciting player in college football. Period.