Auburn at home: best team in the nation. (7-0) Auburn anywhere else: less than mediocre. (3-4)
Over the last quarter century since the public internet became a thing, everything has gotten so damn political. There is no issue so small or that can be discussed civilly without politics being added to the mix and turning it into a good-versus-evil war. Even sports has gotten political with the anthem controversy in the NFL and every reporter on ESPN feeling like he has to mount his or her soapbox about every subject. College football is one of the few places that has managed to remain outside the political cage match for the most part; that this braying jackass wants it to be otherwise just shows what kind of a damn fool he is. Saban and other coaches are paid to run their teams, not to be political pundits (of which we have far too many as it is). This guy just needs to shut the hell up.
Silly Herbie; doesn't even know it's spelled "rasslin'". (Looking for angry tweet back from him any minute now.)
Says the Ole Miss guy whose team out of nowhere started recruiting like a world-beater, and now has the NCAA all over it. Oh, and whose coach responsible for that may have gotten his charges other "amenities" than cash. Yeah, I guess if anyone would know what that's like, it would definitely be Ole Piss.
If Florida fires McElwain just to go after another G5-might-be-the-next-Urban gamble, then the entire administration needs to be let go. You're freakin' Florida, for cryin' out loud. Go after Chip Kelly or Jon Gruden; go after Dabo Swinney or James Franklin; hell, go after Dan Mullen who was once your OC and has made Mississippi State a respectable program. But don't try to get some dude who is good at beating up on other non-Power-5 programs but may not have what it takes for the big time. You're just devaluing your own program.
McElroy tries way too hard to prove he is unbiased when it comes to Alabama. Herbstreit is genuine when it comes to Ohio State and his praise or criticism of them. McElroy, on the other hand, feels the need to always be critical of the Tide so that no one can accuse him of being a homer. The problem is that he does it to such an extent that it becomes glaringly obvious.
Kannell just crowned himself King of Trolls. Guess he is still upset the Tide broke his precious 'Noles.
Kanell would find something bad to say about Alabama even if it beat the Patriots and the whole team spent the summer in Calcutta doing charity work.
But Tennessee DOES have Alabama-level talent, or about as close as anyone does, anyway. All those top-15 and top-5 classes for Jones was supposed to be translating to CFP contention, but instead he has squandered it all like a drunk millionaire at the blackjack table. That, more than anything, is why Jones will be canned by the end of the season, and should be canned tomorrow morning.
There will always be 'Bama fans willing to purchase tickets from those who don't want to see games against the likes of Fresno State or Mercer. There are many for whom these kinds of games where wealthier or better-connected fans are not interested in attending is the only chance they have to watch in person.
Since this article came out, Florida and Florida State have also decided to cancel their games.
If the media wants to make predictions about how teams will fare in the upcoming season, that's fine, but what is the point of having a preseason all-conference team? It's based either on what someone did last year and thinking they'll do the same or better this coming season, or on all kinds of hype that may not pan out. And can someone really call being on a preseason all-conference team a legitimate honor and accomplishment? While I am at it, I may be a Tide fan, but Jalen Hurts being selected first-team all-SEC really shows that the conference is down in proven QB talent. Sure, he had an overall-solid season last year in that he won a conference title and came within one second of a national title and 15-0 season, but his passing numbers dropped dramatically in the second half of the season (not all his fault, as we later found out about the infighting between Saban and Kiffin/Sarkesian was the main culprit) and he made a lot of rookie mistakes that his stellar defense was able to bail him out of. He'll do better this year with the experience now under his belt, but he really at this point does not stack up to other first-team all-SEC QBs from recent years...but neither does anyone else in the league. It will be interesting to see which signal-callers step up to put themselves in the race for post-season honors, and which ones falter.
What, no "Beat 'Bama" as one of the things Malzahn needs to do? Never thought I'd see the day when Auburn fans no longer require an Iron Bowl win to be happy with their coach....
How I see it: Saban: 0 Bielema: 3 Malzahn: 3 (4 if one isn't over Alabama) McElwain: 2 Smart: 1 (if they were that patient with Richt....) Stoops: 3 Orgeron: 3 Mullen: 1 Odom: 3 Freeze: 4 (gotta get something for what's going to put you on probation) Muschamp: 1 Jones: 4 (5 if one isn't over Alabama) Sumlin: 5 (pretty much needs to win the West) Mason: 3
LSU would have had the ball down by six and needing to drive 69 yards on the best defense in the country to win. May have been a game-changer...or not. Get over it.
Saban switched to the spread after losing to Oklahoma in the 2014 Sugar Bowl and thinking that he would have to start using it if he was going to continue being successful. Ironically though, it was not his offense that needed upgrading but his defense, which was getting exposed as being too slow (especially at the corners) to handle spread offenses. His pro-set offense built on the idea of perfect balance between running and passing was actually working fine for his overall philosophy of controlling the ball (and with it the tempo), minimizing mistakes and turnovers, and keeping opposing defenses guessing while letting the defense have as much rest as possible. Saban appears to be going back to that, though unfortunately the three QBs he had to run it all transferred last year because it was apparent that the spread offense with Hurts running it was going to be the way things were done for at least the next few years. Regardless of who Saban hires, his new OC is going to either have to be able to get Hurts or the Tua kid coached up on running the pro-set, or finding another QB who can and rely on his running backs to pick up the slack until they do.
The real wild-card here is the Alabama offense under Sarkesian. The Tide has looked out of synch offensively since the bye week after A&M, and last Saturday was the worst. Hurts looked totally confused, the play-calling was highly questionable and at times down-right bizarre (Stewart in a conventional running play?) and were it not for the incredible play of the defense, the Tide would likely be watching this game from Tuscaloosa on Monday. There have been all kinds of suggestions that this was from distractions created by Kiffin, especially after he got the FAU job, and while we may not know the truth for some time yet (it will come out sooner or later) this change by Saban is the one to watch to see whether Sark can gel with his offense or if the struggles continue.
There is no "plan" for beating Alabama. The Tide has won and lost low-scoring games, and it has won and lost shootouts. The way you have a chance for beating Alabama is: play your game. Don't be intimidated. Don't think you have to put all your energy into getting off to a fast start, as the Tide lets teams do their thing for the first few series to see what they're plan is before hitting the "on" switch for its game. Understand it's a 60-minute game and pace yourself, because you have almost no hope of getting an early big lead and playing to hang on to it (ask Ole Miss this year). Clemson has the talent to hang with 'Bama into the fourth quarter and have a great chance to win if they play with confidence; if they try to burn all the fuel in the first quarter, they'll be sucking down the oxygen while watching the Tide pull away from them by the start of the fourth quarter.
Simmons is just another of those ex-ESPN guys who got his ass canned that's now desperately trying to get attention for himself. Let the little troll have his 15 seconds of fame before he goes back to his has-been career.
While Kiffin's reputation may have had a hand in it, the big reason why he didn't land the Houston job is because the Cougars have gotten tired of their good coaches getting snatched away by big-money, Power Five schools and wanted a long-term deal that guaranteed Kiffin would have been there for several years. Kiffin saw Houston as a stepping-stone back into a Power Five job and didn't want to be locked in when one opened up. If he does well at FAU, don't expect him to be there long before he's off for better pastures.
Eh, we beat them much worse.
And yet you'd kill to have it.
Yeah, beating a 'Bama team in Mike Shula's first year that wound up going 4-9 isn't exactly as resume builder. Still, a win's a win, so that can translate into confidence for Canada and LSU.
My question would be whether the stats loaded for Alabama were based on what they are relative to a college program while those for Cleveland were based on those relative to an NFL team. If so, then Alabama's numbers would have been skewed much higher than what they would be in reality playing on an NFL level.
As I said on a similar article earlier, it's not Alabama and Saban being so good that caused the rest of the league to be mediocre this year, it's the serendipity of most of the other teams seeing their internal problems and bad decisions all coming to roost in this one season. Some, like Gary Pinkel's retirement after being diagnosed with cancer, were not the school's fault; most, however, were self-inflicted from internal power struggles, bad coaching hires, and bad off-field decisions (Bobby Petrino's motorcycle ride and what it revealed). It's easy to blame Alabama rather than oneself for the problems that each SEC experienced this season.
The problem with that is, what we would be right back here with would no longer be whether Penn State, Michigan, and/or Wisconsin get in, it would be whether Oklahoma, USC, and/or Colorado get in and whether they got screwed by being left out. We see it all the time in college basketball how the field has expanded to 68 teams, how every year there is weeping and wailing about how the #8 team in a power conference got left out in favor of a third team from the Missouri Valley or Atlantic 10, and how the field should go to 96 or even 128 teams. There will always be controversy no matter the size of the field, just have to accept it.
And Clemson lost to Pitt, too.
And this was totally...expected, actually.
So a two-loss Wisconsin team would get in ahead of a one-loss, non-conference-champ Alabama team, but a one-loss Ohio State team that didn't even win its division would still make it? Hmmmmmm....
The problem with this is that unless you eliminate a regular season game (and the income that goes with it) the two teams playing in the national final would play as many as 16 games on the season. That's physically demanding on NFL players who are fully-grown men and are paid to spend all their time pursuing football; it's murder on still-physically-developing 18-22 year-olds who by NCAA rule can spend no more than 20 hours a week in practice PLUS have a full-time job as students. And no matter how many teams you put in, someone is always going to argue there aren't enough. Numbers 5 and 6 are complaining now; grow it to eight teams and suddenly numbers 9 and 10 are screaming they deserve a chance while more and more people advocate for going to 16 teams. I think an 8-team playoff will inevitably happen for no other reason than what your last sentence indicated, but it won't solve anything any more than the current 4-team system does or the BCS did before it.