Saturday, October 07, 2006

Whole Hog - Half Ham - ARKANSAS BY DAMN!


Didn't see that coming.

Not after four less than inspiring games and two conference wins that could have easily gone the other way.

Auburn - the Hogs beat the HELL out of you.

Much like Fred Talley in 2002 - Darren McFadden and Felix Jones ARE STILL RUNNING!

Suck it.

4-1 (3-0) better equal something close to the Top 20.

Auburn = pOwn3d!!!

Friday, October 06, 2006

The Big Game - Hogs at Barners

I want to have a good feeling about this game, but reason just won't let me. On paper its not a terrible mismatch, at least not from the perspective of a Hog fan.

Auburn holds an edge at QB, if only because this is Mitch Mustain's first real road test. But, Vandy was a road game you might say...but Vandy is Vandy I respond. Big difference in noise between the Plains and Nashville. Mustain has a nice confidence about him for a freshman, but Auburn has the best defense the Hogs have faced yet. And the best they will face until LSU. Mitch doesn't need to go 25-30 300 3-0 for the Hogs to stay in. But he can't put up the hideous stat line he put up against Alabama and have it be anywhere near a close game.

The running back matchup is probably a draw on face value. McFadden vs Irons is the best matchup of starting running backs you'll find in the conference, and one of the best in the nation you could hope for. But the Hogs also have Felix Jones and Micheal Smith. Smith is a clone of Fred Talley. And Fred Talley is still running against Auburn from four years ago. Throw in H-Back (that's what I consider him at least) Peyton Hillis and the Hogs have an advantage here.

At wideout, I admit to not knowing much of anything about Auburns' WRs and being too lazy to look it up. The Hogs don't have great wide receivers, but they have depth there for the first time in years. Marcus Monk is an all-conference performer and Damien Williams likely will be in the coming years. The problem here, as it has been for years, is getting consistency from this group. They can't afford any drops. This is probably a draw, but I'll say Auburn may have a slight edge on experience alone.

Arkansas' o-line has been solid, not spectacular. Not a lot of sacks given up, pass protection has been decent. Auburn also possesses a very talented o-line. But they will be down a starter for this game at center. I'd give them the advantage if they were 100%, instead I'll call it a draw.

The Defenses are the story of this game. Auburn's has looked great, Arkansas's has looked average, with moments of greatness and moments of ineptitude. But Auburn's only been giving up 12 pts a game. Only gave up 3 to a very good LSU team. But South Carolina showed that Auburn could be vulnerable to a spread attack with a mobile QB. Mustain hasn't appeared that mobile however, and Arkansas' switch to a spread offense has been implemented fully just yet. And Auburn should, in theory, feast on an freshman QB with no experience on the road. Mustain is the future of Arkansas, but I'd feel better about this if Casey Dick had been able to start from Day 1. But he wasn't and hasn't been seen too much this year as Mustain has been given the freedom to make mistakes and grow into the starters role. The Razorback D has been succeptible to the Big Play all year, and they can't give up a single one of them tomorrow morning. The Hogs have created but one turnover all year and they will need to create them tomorrow to help out the offense.

If the Hogs are to pull this one out, its gonna take a care-taker style game out of Mustain and a huge performance from McFadden and Jones. The D is going to have to put in its best performance of the Reggie Herring era. Darius Vinnet may finally be able to play tomorrow and that would help a ton, but I'm not sure if even his return would be enough. Auburn is the #2 team in the nation for a reason. The final score should reflect a game that was relatively close, but I'm expecting Auburn to be in control the whole time.

Auburn 28
Arkansas 17

Thursday, October 05, 2006

This Week In SEC Football - Week 6

Quick previews and picks for Week 6 of SEC Football

Arkansas (3-1) at Auburn (5-0) - 12:00 pm
I'm not giving away too much here to say that I don't expect my Hogs to win this one, but I'm expecting the spread to be covered at the least. Final score and real preview coming up in a later post.

Vanderbilt (2-3) at Ole Miss (1-4)- 2:00pm
Has there been a bigger dissapointment in the SEC than the Rebels? They need to go at least 5-2 to be bowl eligible at this point. That's just not going to happen. As for Vandy, isn't this pretty much what you would have expected from them? They've fought hard in losses to Michigan, Alabama, and Arkansas. They've blown up Temple and Tennesee State. Ole Miss looked ugly beating a bad Memphis team and has looked worse each week. Was David Cutcliffe really so bad? Final Score: Vandy 14 Ole Miss 10

West Virginia (4-0) at Mississippi State (1-4)- 2:30pm
Yikes. It's gotta be hard to be a Bulldog fan. I like Sly Croom. And while they finally appear to have discovered the end zone the past couple of games, they are still only average something like 12 pts a game. West Virginia, on the other hand, has an offense averaging over 40. It'll be a beating. It won't be pretty. Turn your heads Bulldog fans, you likely won't want to see this. Final Score: WVU 49 MSU 14

LSU (4-1) at Florida (5-0) - 3:30pm
Here it is. Game of the week. Florida is undefeated, but hasn't looked that great doing it. I grew up with those Spurrier Florida teams that would be 5-0 by a combined 225-50 at this point. Florida has their win over UT, but the win over Bama wasn't what I expected it to be. LSU lost what was either a defensive masterpiece or an offensive atrocity to Auburn earlier this year. None of their wins are particularly special either. I'm giving the Gators the slight edge here. Mostly because this is at the Swamp. And also because when teams appear to be so even, I go with the coach. I trust Urban more than Les Miles. And I trust the LeakBow QB combo over JaMarcus. Final Score: UF 24 LSU 20

South Carolina (3-2) at Kentucky (3-2) - 7:00p
Spurrier is pissed. He knows they could have beaten Auburn last week. Kentucky knows they let my Chippewas put up tons of yards on them and didn't put them away until the end of the 4th quarter. CMU runs a variation of the spread with a mobile QB. Oh yeah, SC is using a mobile qb now and I think Spurrier knows how to run a passing offense. And the Gamecocks, as well as about 90 other teams, play much better D than the Chips. You know what that means? Bad news for the Wildcats. Final Score: SC 38 UK 17

Duke (0-4) at Alabama (3-2) - 7:07pm (wha?!?)
This would be a much better basketball game. Now that Bama has a three named QB once again, they might just end up with a decent offense by years end. JPW has looked good for a first year starter. However, Mike Shula remains the head coach so anything is possible. On the other hand, Duke remains the opponent. Duke shames the ACC far worse than Vandy could ever shame the SEC. Teams like Duke,Temple, etc make me think the NCAA should adopt rules similar to the Premiership. The worst of teams go down to 1-AA for a year or two until they show they deserve better, and the best 1-AA teams get to visit 1-A and get a share of big money until they play their way back to 1-AA. Temple would be in the NAIA by now. Duke, a power of the Colonial league. Final Score: Bama 34 Duke 7

Tennessee (4-1) at Georgia (5-0)- 7:45pm
This is hard for me. I generally like Georgia. Good team every year. Quality fans. Their players spoke highly of Arkansas after beating my Hogs the past two years. Richt seems to run a quality program. Hard not to respect what he does there. On the other hand, I loathe Tennessee. My Hogs may have been 4-7 last year, but Fat Phil's gang went 5-6 and lost to Vandy as well to keep from being bowl eligible. Loved it. Their fans are more hill-folky than even the most hill-folky fans you could hope to find. They wear enough bright orange so that they can go a coon huntin' right after the game. Fulmer runs such a thug laden loose program that the good folks at EDSBS created the Fulmer Cup to chart offseason arrests for teams. (Only 3 pts last year for Arkansas--we could win that damn thing if Danny Ford was still around). I hate Tennessee. And naturally, they seem to own the Hogs. Kinda like why we Hog fans hated Texas so much back in the day. Didn't beat them often, came close a lot, but when we did win - it was like a state-wide orgy. The fact that both teams are UT and wear a variation of orange is not lost on me. But I digress.

If Georgia wasn't one of the worst looking 5-0 teams in the nation, I'd go out on a limb here. But stuggling to put away terrible teams like Colorado and Ole Miss will take you only so far. UT has lost only a game they should have won against Florida. Granted they let Air Force nearly take them out, but Air Force is probably better than Colorado and Ole Miss. I don't want this to be true. I really, really don't. The Vols appear to be back. And UGA appears to be waiting for that first loss to go ahead and put them in pseudo-rebuilding mode. I'm afraid...Final Score: UT 30 UGA 21

Back...Again...For Real

Yeah, so I took about a month hiatus after only posting for a couple weeks anyway. However, I'm committed to this thing again. Really. I mean it this time. Like that old girlfriend who you broke up with ten times and made up with 9. And number 10 is only a couple of weeks away. It's like that. So where are we?

Oh yeah - for another two days at least - we are first place in the SEC West. Sure we got whooped up on by the Trojans again. That was turnovers more than flat out butt whipping like last year. Then the boys looked flat against Utah State. Followed by a squeaker of a win at Vandy. And when we last saw our Hogs they were the beneficiaries of Alabama's new "field goals and extra points aren't neccessary" policy. Plus, when you get Arkansas in overtime, odds are Arkansas is taking the game. The Hogs know OT.

Somewhere in the 4th quarter against USC, Arkansas went and made the change we all knew was coming at some point. Super freshman all-American savior of the program Jesus's son Mitch Mustain made his entry onto the field. And promptly led a touchdown drive. And promptly threw an obvious pick on the next possession. Didn't matter. The kid looked good. He has generally kept this up as well. A solid enough first start against Utah State, a 3 TD performance on the road at Vandy, and then three picks against Bama before throwing the game winner in OT to high school teammate Ben Cleveland. There is legitimate excitement on the Hill. The offense has the potential to be great if they manage to finally find consistency. Three all-conference backs in McFadden, Hillis, and Jones. A pair of quality WRs in Monk and Williams, as well as legitimate depth at WR for the first time in ages. A solid if not spectacular o-line. A hot shot 18 yr old QB. I like where this is going. This week's matchup with Auburn is going to say a lot about this team. An upset win would make the Hogs the only team in the West with control of their destiny. Suddenly, 10 wins looks very possible. A loss and the Hogs are still looking at 8 wins most likely. We all know there is a big difference in an 8 win team and a 10 win team. I can't wait for Saturday at noon. I'll have an in-depth preview up tomorrow if not later today.

As for my other team, the ol alma mater, I can't complain about the Chippewas thus far. They had a chance to tie in the 4th against both BC and Kentucky, and they played better than the scored indicated against an excellent Michigan team. The stat that matters is the 2-0 start in conference. Beating Akron the week after Akron upset NC State. A win over quasi-rival Eastern. A big match-up this week with Toledo. Fire up Chips.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Less than 4 hours from college football


UPDATE - Boy, am I ever proud of the effort by the Chippewas tonight. I don't really believe in moral victories, but if they have that kind of effort every game, they may well be the best team in the MAC West. Great job Chips, I'm a proud alum tonight

And of course, come Saturday...


Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Week One - IT HAS BEGUN!!!!

Oh sweet mother of mercy, the time of the beast is upon us. Hot, sticky, sweet SEC action begins at 8pm EST on ESPN as the OBC steps into Starkville. So what doth the first weekend of major college football hold for the teams of the Southeastern Conference? Let's take a peek at week one of the strangehold that is SEC football!

South Carolina at Mississippi State - Thursday, August 31st, 8pm EST
LETS GET IT ON!!! Unlike most conferences, you can always count on at least one conference game in the SEC during the first week. While its not the sexiest matchup of the weekend, it's not half bad for a Thursday night. Who better than Steven Orr Spurrier to welcome you back into the abyss of college football? The upset special is always a possibility as the OBC doesn't have the best track record playing in Starkville. I'm willing to bet the Cock'n'Fire is loaded for bear and Spurrier's gang takes care of this one early. Croom's boys are bound to see better days at Mississippi State, but this is not likely to be one of them. Final Score: SC 31 MSU 14

at Michigan - Saturday, September 2nd, 12pm EST
While its nice to see the Wolverines opening with an SEC school instead of Directional Michigan, it's not like they've got LSU on their plate. Vandy is fiesty and if Cutler was still around I'd give them a fighting chance. However, no amount of Pac-10 transfers in the world can make up this talent gap and UM has something to prove after last year's disappointing season. Final Score: UM 38 Vandy 10

Western Kentucky at Georgia - Saturday, September 2nd, 12:30p EST
Will the Hilltopper be there? If so, thats the only thing WKU will have going for it down twixt the Hedges. This is a nice way to Tereshinsky to find a groove as a starting QB and a good opportunity for the other QBs to get some experience as well. This should get ugly quick, fast, and in a hurry. Final Score: UGA 49 WKU 7

California at Tennessee - Saturday, September 2nd, 5:30p EST
This is one of the more intriguing matchups of opening weekend. Is Tennessee as bad as they looked last year or has David Cutcliffe's return revitalized the offense? Can the Vol D slow down what should be a very good Cal offense with all-world back Marshawn Lynch? A Vol win would be a fantastic statement to open the season, however, I just don't see it happening. Final Score: Cal 28 UT 17

Southern Miss at Florida - Saturday, September 2nd, 6:00p EST
This game would have been a lot scarier for the Gators about four or five years ago. Or if Ron Zook was still the coach. Both SMQ and EDSBS have this one covered much better than I could hope to. I'm expecting the Gators in a game that is close for a half before the gates open up. Final Score: UF 34 SM 17

Hawaii at Alabama - Saturday, September 2nd, 7p EST
Hawaii almost always has a potent offense. Alabama likely will not. Hawaii hardly ever plays much defense. Alabama generally plays rather solid D. If John Parker Wilson finds any kind of stride this one could be ugly. Final Score: Bama 24 UH 13

Washington State at Auburn - Saturday, September 2nd, 7:45p EST
If this was Mike Price Wazzu, I'd give the Cougs a punchers chance. A few years back a Pac 10 team went down to the Plains and handed Auburn a 24-0 butt whippin'. I see this going down very similarly, only in reverse. Auburn has as good a team as any in the land and this should be a solid opening act for the Tigers. Final Score: AU 38 WSU 10

Louisiana-Lafayette at LSU - Saturday, September 2nd, 8:00p EST
Does anyone outside of the fans and alumni of the former Directional Louisiana think the Cajuns will compete in this game much past the kickoff? A nice cupcake kickoff to get the Bayou Bengals march to Atlanta in gear. Final Score: LSU 56 ULL 10

USC at Arkansas - Saturday, September 2nd, 8:45p EST
Boy this one was painful to watch last year. 70-17. It felt like a severe running-up of the score, but a lot of it was done with 2nd teamers in. For a little while in the first quarter it was 10-7 and Arkansas looked competitive. Then the wheels came off. But, lets ask Georgia and LSU if that team that got slaughtered by the Trojans was the same team they faced at the end of the year. The Hogs should be much better and the Trojans have lost a lot. But they still have plenty of weapons. If Darren McFadden was to be 100%, I might even pick a Hog upset. I can't go that far just yet though, USC will win, but it won't be 70-17. Final Score: USC 28 Ark 20

Memphis at Mississippi - Sunday, September 3rd, 4:30p EST
I admit to rooting for the Memphis Tigers more often than not. I grew up outside of Memphis and they realllly sucked in those days. However, no D'Angelo Williams means not much of a chance this year. Ole Miss may finally have something resembling an offense with Brent Schaeffer. This is usally a great game and I expect it to be competitive, but with Ole Miss in total control. Final Score: Ole Miss 24 Memphis 13

Kentucky at Louisville - Sunday, September 3rd, 8:00p EST
Again, Rich Brooks. That alone equals a Louisville win. Throw in Brohm and Bush and this becomes a total demolition. The countdown to a new head coach in Lexington begins at 8:00p there!!! Final Score: UL 45 UK 7

A look at...The SEC East

The SEC East seems to have a reputation as the Beast of the SEC, as it is the home to the well-respected, well-publicized trio of Florida, Georgia, and Tennessee. It's hard not to be the better known half of a conference with those three programs. Add Steve Spurrier into the mix at South Carolina and suddenly, you've got yourself an even more powerful division. Imagine if someone competent was at Kentucky! Or if Vandy had found permanent eligbility for Jay Cutler! The East should be highly competitive once again, and here's how I see it all going down..

1)Florida - Word on the street is that Year 2 is when things really click for Urban Meyer's teams. Witness Bowling Green. Witness Utah. However, this is the SEC and not the MAC or Mountain West. Who is to say if the spread option is gonna make it work like Tim Gunn or not? Despite a lack of a running back, I think The Swamp is going to be home of the Eastern Division champs. They'll take care of business at Tennessee and be 4-0 going into what should be a helluva payback game against Bama. LSU may be able to pull off the upset, but it's at the Swamp, and I don't think they are going down at the Swamp this year. So, 6-0 going into a road game at Auburn...and 6-1 leaving said road game. Like the Tennessee games of the late 90s, the UF/UGA game is the new division championship game. This year, I'm going Gators. I'll call victory over the Gamecocks during the OBC's dramatic return to The Swamp. And a win over the Noles as well. And that means a final record of: 11-1 (7-1)

2)Georgia - My only real concern with Georgia is their quarterback situation. If Joe T. can be a gatekeeper and simply not lose the games for the Bulldogs they may well be the Eastern champions. Think Trent Dilfer for the Ravens during their Super Bowl run. Just do enough to be efficient and all will be fine. Georgia and Florida are the class of the division right now and if Joe T. is getting it done by the time of the Cocktail Party, the division will likely be decided that day. Then again, it could all fall apart and Matthew Stafford may be at the helm by then. I'm sticking with Tereshinsky getting the job done and leading the Bulldogs to another 10 win season between the Hedges. Outside of the Florida game, the only matchup I don't see the Bulldogs as clear favorites in is their trip to Auburn. I've got the Gators and the Tigers claiming victory and Georgia's final record as: 10-2 (6-2)

3)South Carolina - Most folks seem to think the Gamecocks are going to take a slight fall this year. However, outside of a trip to Gainesville in which SC is likely to be very inspired, I don't see a road game that screams out defeat for the OBC. However, all four conference home games are quite tough. Georgia, Auburn, Tennessee, and Arkansas. It'll be a challenge just to split those 4. I think Spurrier's still got UT's number, but Georgia and Auburn will not be W's for Cocks. Arkansas/SC should be a great matchup and a true swing game for these two teams. With the exception of the year-end matchup with Clemson, the non-conference schedule is weak and is at worth at least 3 victories. Lets give Darth Visor a nice 2nd year result of: 7-5 (4-4)

3)Tennessee - Fat Phil really has his work cut out for him this year. David Cutcliffe returns to Knoxville to save the offense, but will still find Erik Ainge is the QB and not much can help you there. And where are the receivers? This hardly resembles the Vol offense of the 90s that Fulmer could coach to 10 wins without even breaking a sweat. Sure, its impossible for Phil not to be sweating, but you get the point. Last year's 5-6 seems less an aberration than an indictment of the decline of this program recently. Even the previous 10 win season seemed to come more out of good fortune than actually having a 10 win caliber squad. Things do not look overly promising in Knoxville, but it's hard to truly count out the Vols. A win over California would go a long ways towards establishing some confidence, but as much as it pains me to pick a Pac 10 squad, I have visions of the Bears beating the Vols and it not even looking that difficult for them. No other real roadblocks on the non-conference schedule however and free wins over Vandy and Kentucky should put the Vols in good shape for: 7-5 (4-4)

5) Vanderbilt - You were expecting Kentucky here, right? So was I. Then I thought about it. Vandy is bad, but Kentucky is quite possibly worse. You can at least expect a scrappy squad out of Vandy. Even without Jay Cutler. They do have an experienced transfer QB in Richard Kovalcheck. And outside of Michigan, they have a fighting chance at winning the rest of their non-conference games. Can they pull off an conference win? I've got them winning at Kentucky and who is to say they don't have it in them to knock off Ole Miss again? Perhaps they even have newfound confidence after beating Fat Phil last year. I'm not sure I see more than that one SEC victory in their future however and a final record of: 4-8 (1-7)

6) Kentucky - Rich Brooks. Need I say more? After Louisville likely blows them out to open the season, the other 3 non-conference games look to be winnable. And they should be. But why do I get the feeling my fightin' Chippewas may be able to knock off Kentucky? Outside of that, is there a conference game, with the exception of Vanderbilt, that you'd feel good about saying Kentucky can win? Maybe Mississippi State, but thats on the road. And I already said I was taking Vandy in the road win. I just have zero good feeling about this squad. I know they return a decent amount of players, but I'm not sure that offsets anything that everybody else is returning. While they are probably bound to win one somewhere, I'll go on and give them the big fat o-fer and call for a final record of: 3-9 (0-8)

A look at...The SEC West

Ah yes, the Western Division of the Southeastern Conference. Often viewed as the ugly sister of the more glamorous Eastern division. Mostly due to its not being the home of Florida, Tennessee, and Georgia. But hey, we've got Alabama, LSU, and Auburn so screw off Eastern Division! So, how do I feel the West is gonna shake down this year? Probably something like this:

1)AUBURN - Big shocker here. Preseason Top 10 squad. Eight home games. Horrible, difficult road trip is pretty much non-existent with the exception of Alabama. Everyone has to come to Jordan Hare this year. Even you, Buffalo. While I can't see Auburn making a 2nd undefeated run through the SEC in three years, it's certainly possible. I can't help but feel someone will trip them up. Final record: 11-1 (7-1)

2)LSU - Another team with Top 10 expectations and the talent to match. However, the schedule is not nearly as kind as it is to some other schools. The four road trips LSU takes in Conference play, none of them are ones where LSU will likely be a huge favorite, if a favorite at all. Road trips to Auburn, Florida, Tennessee, and Arkansas do not usually create conference champions. If they do survive that slate and go better than 2-2, they'll probably be enjoying a lovely BCS vacation. Final record: 10-2 (6-2)

2)Arkansas - Yes, call me a homer all you want. It's fine with me. Things are lined up very nicely for the Hogs this year. Vandy, Auburn, South Carolina, and Mississippi State are the road games. Everyone else comes to Fayetteville, with the exception of LSU whom Arkansas plays in Little Rock. Nutt has a chance to have a special team with the talent he returns. Darren McFadden is back in pads and if Arkansas can find anything resembling a decent passing game with new offensive gurus Gus Malzahn and Alex Wood, they could very well be the surprise team of the SEC. I'm fairly sure Auburn knocks them off, but I feel good about their chances with their schedule. Final record: - 9-3 (6-2)

4) Alabama - Is Bama really back? I'm not sold on Mike Shula's boys just yet. They should have a solid defense, but what about the offense? No more Croyle and who knows with Prothro. Bama should be solid enough for a bowl, but I don't feel comfortable giving them much more than that. Not with road trips to Arkansas, Florida, Tennessee, and LSU. They should win all four non-conference games and split their conference record at the least. Final record: 8-4 (4-4)

5) Ole Miss - At the risk of offending The Orgeron, I just don't believe in Ole Miss. He has recruited excellently, and Brent Schaeffer should make a difference offensively. Patrick Willis is a stud linebacker and I would expect solid play from the D. But much like Alabama, they need to show an offense before we start handing them over victories. Five road games for the Rebels this year with trips to Missouri, Kentucky, Arkansas, Alabama, and LSU. Find a way to win 3 of those and The Orgeron probably has himself a bowl game and Oxford goes wild. I think they can win all four non-conference games, although I'm certainly not positive they win at Missouri, or even at home against Wake Forest just yet. I'll give them the benefit of the doubt and assume Schaeffer gives their offense a spark and give them a very tentative final record of: 7-5 (3-5)

6) Mississippi State - What a mess of a team Sly Croom has down there. He deserves much better than this. Absolutely nothing stands out about them, no players of note, no Jerious Norwood anymore, what is there to live for in Starkville these days? I don't even feel good about picking a .500 out of conference record. Not with West Virginia coming to Starkville and a road trip to UAB. Jacksonville State should be a win and so should Tulane. No guarantees on three of those however. Hell, even with all four of those. I don't see them winning any of their conference road games, and I'm not even positive they'll pull off more than a win over Kentucky or South Carolina. Things are bleak there, but hopefully Croom will be given the chance to make a difference. Some people are expecting a potential breakout year. I'm not one of those people. Final record: 3-8 (1-7)

It's Football Eve!!!

Football Eve is a celebration, bitches!

After a two week absence in which apparently a few hundred people discovered the Jorts via the wonderful College Football Resource and DawgBone and have promptly decided to never come back as it appeared this site was never updated...I have returned. I apologize for the delay and welcome new readers to what should now be regular posting since college football is officially upon us. Let me get this out of the way, the Coaches Profiles, well, they are probably gonna be finished as the season plays out. Perhaps it was rushed, perhaps it was just more than I had time to bite off when I started up the Jorts. Either way, they'll get finished eventually. Coming up today will be my SEC preview and predicitions, which I figured needed to get out ASAP since the SEC season begins in about 36 hours. However, I will be the first to admit that I will not tune into said South Carolina/Mississippi State action until after the end of BC/Central Michigan. Why would I possibly want to watch that horrendous matchup?!? Because I somehow ended up a graduate of Directional Michigan and it will do me well to see scenic Mount Pleasant, Michigan on real live national television. Even if it is of the ESPN2 variety. I'm also hoping they can explain to me why the hell BC would ever take a road game in Mount Pleasant. I can only hope that my Chippewa brethren do me proud and that Kelly Shorts Stadium is at at least 60% capacity. I expect no less.

SEC Conference Preview coming up this afternoon...

Thursday, August 17, 2006

We talkin' bout practice man

Coach Nutt gave the Hogs got a much needed day off today. With injuries starting to pile up at a rapid rate, a day away from the pads may be just what the doctor ordered to ensure that Arkansas has at least one functional starter when SC comes to town. Two-a-days end tomorrow and Saturday is an open to the public scrimmage. Just the kind of thing that makes me sad I don't live in NW Ark, as I'd absolutely be there, and also glad I don't live there, as I'd be spending one of the last Saturdays of summer watching PRACTICE. I remember what college football practice felt like just fine, I don't need a visual reminder.

Robert Johnson was named the starter officially last evening, not that there was that much choice with Casey Dick closing in on a back amputation and Nutt smartly not wanting to ruin his prized heifer Mitch Mustain by sacrificing him to Pete Carrol in his first game. Mitch will likely see some action in this game - unless RoJo is lights out, which I am praying to Vishnu for - and I would fully expect the crowd to explode when this happens. It's an unfortunate situation for Johnson, as he would pretty much have to turn into Peyton Manning to get many Razorback fans behind him. What is often forgotten is that Johnson and the Hogs were moving the ball well in the first quarter against USC (of course, SC in turn was moving the ball in 20 yard spurts by breathing) and was having a decent game before getting hurt. Johnson, while never playing great to begin with, was not the same QB from that point on. He was tentative and made the short pass to the back rather than looking downfield. His confidence was shaken and Nutt probably waited a few games too many before making the change to Casey Dick. It's a new year however and with new coaches teaching him, it's hopefully a new RoJo as well. However, expect to hear folks calling for Mustain at the first sign of difficulty.

Coming soon to an SEC stadium near you..

Get to know me!! - Mark Richt

Home stretch, folks--only two remain in each division--and next on the chopping block is El Jefe of Athens and UGA's main bitch...lets get to know Mark Richt shall we?

Hi, I'm Mark Richt and I'm better than you!

While the name may be different, there is simply no mistaking it - Mark Richt is that kid from your high school who ran the joint. Was sleeping with the hot cheerleader. Was the starting qb. Threw nerds in lockers. Is there any doubt that this is Mark Richt? He seems to be an alpha coach. Straight banging success. 8 wins to start it all off back in '01 and four straight years of 10 wins or more since. Also, Richt has won 2 SEC Championships in his five years between the hedges. He wakes up in the morning and take a big ol dump of victory. Richt qb'd at Da U behind Jim Kelly. Even started one year.

For an example of how good of a coach Richt is perhaps we should ask the good folks at Florida State how things have been offesively since his "conservative and predictable" system left the strip malls and Waffle Houses of Tallahassee for Athens. Of course, it may just be because anyone feels like an upgrade after Jim Donnan's reign of mediocrity. Georgia is one of those programs that should always be a power and Richt seems to be tailor made for coaching down between the hedges. So here is to you Mark Richt, you may not be flashy, but you win ball games and you bang the cheerleader afterwards. Keep it up sir.

Coaching the GameDay flag team to an 8-4 record

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Hogs finding new ways to increase the line before USC game

The bad news keeps coming from Fayetteville as Darius Vinnett joins the long list of projected Razorback starters to be claimed by the injury bug. Vinnett joins Darren McFadden of bizarre toe injury in a bar fight fame and QB Casey Dick of mysterious back injury renown.

The worst news of all is that Casey Dick's back just doesn't seem to be healing properly. Dick first hurt his back in spring practice and was expected to be fully healed by the time August rolled around. Dick was evaluated by a specialist in Little Rock last night and was diagnosed with an L-2 Stress Reaction. Further comment on the situation is expected to come tonight.

This likely leaves Robert Johnson as the starter for the USC game. Johnson started the first seven games of last year and looked horrible for most of it. However, he has shown flashes of his potential and the USC game last year was actually a rather solid performance before he left with an injury. Offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn and QB coach Alex Wood seem very impressed with him thus far in the preseason. Expect QB wunderkund and highly touted freshman Mitch Mustain to see action quickly if Johnson falters at all.

Sold his soul for another crack at the Trojans