Tag Archives: Oregeon ducks

Higher Learning Week 7

This aint good for Oregon.

Not an exciting week in college football but Here’s what we learned last week:

  1. Oregon’s injuries are becoming a serious issue. First LaMichael James went down with an injury to his elbow and now Darron Thomas is questionable after a leg injury marred a 41-27 win over Arizona State. Oregon doesn’t have to worry about James or Thomas’s health this week at Boulder to face Colorado nor will they against Wazzu in two weeks. But with big games coming up against Stanford and Washington you have to wonder if the Ducks will be strong enough to handle the dark horse national title contenders in Palo Alto or the upstarts in Seattle.
  2. Georgia Tech certainly can disappoint can’t they. One minute they look like a clear cut ACC favorite, the next they’re losing to Virginia. Last week’s stinker comes at a bad time as the Jackets begin a stretch against Miami, Clemson and Virginia Tech and another loss could kiss their Orange Bowl hopes good-bye. One way that they can stop another swoon is passing the ball better. 2-8 and 2 picks is totally unacceptable even for the triple option.
  3. Michigan State might be for real after beating previously unbeaten Michigan 28-14 in East Lansing last weekend. Their defense continues to impress as one of the nation’s best as they shut down Denard Robinson in impressive style limiting him to 42 yards on the ground and forcing him into a 9-24 day and sacking him 7 times. If this Spartans team is truly for real then they will prove it against Wisconsin this week.
  4. The West is certainly best in the SEC. As Auburn, Alabama and LSU keep rolling SEC East powers South Carolina, Florida and Tennessee all continue to struggle. South Carolina looks like it’s safe to make it to the Georgia Dome for the SEC title game but a 14-12 win over disappointing Mississippi State gives us all reason as to why they won’t win against any of the 3 West powers. Connor Shaw came back down to earth and they lost Marcus Lattimore for the rest of the season. The Gamecocks should be safe against the Gators coming up but don’t expect much out of them after.
  5. Illinois disappoints… again. After a promising start they lost to the offensively inept Ohio State Buckeyes this week and looked  just as bad. The Illini turned the ball over three times and never got a good flow going. Losses like these are no wonder the Illini never can get over the hump in the Big Ten.

THE GOOD

That blur was Senquez Golson... ouch.

 

Ryan Tannehill took advantage of Baylor’s poor pass D to the tune of 415 yards and 6 td’s in a 55-28 in College Station.

THE BAD

The Big East was rejected by Army, Navy and the Air Force last weekend for admittance… they also contacted Boise State… yeah this won’t end well for the Big East.

THE UGLY

Sure Ohio State won this past weekend, but they had one completion… one. Even Tresselball wasn’t this conservative.

PLAYER OF THE WEEK

The Brooklyn Buckeye man crush Kellen Moore: 26-30 for 338 yards and 4td’s in a 63-13 win for Boise over Colorado State.

EMBARASSMENT OF THE WEEK

Senquez Golson of Ole Miss… what Trent Richardson did to your ankles was horrible. YouTube that please.

TOP 5

  1. LSU
  2. Alabama
  3. Oklahoma
  4. Boise State
  5. Wisconsin

HEISMAN TOP 5

  1. Kellen Moore, Boise State
  2. Russell Wilson, Wisconsin
  3. Trent Richardson, Alabama
  4. Landry Jones, Oklahoma
  5. Andrew Luck, Stanford

The best matchups this weekend includes #20 Auburn vs. #1 LSU,  #25 Washington vs. #8 Stanford and #6 Wisconsin vs. #16 Michigan State.


The Sad And Painful Reality Of Boise State Football

Kellen Moore watches Boise go from National title contender, to just another small school.

I watched a dream die tonight. I watched a season of high expectations, hopes and dreams go up in flames due to what can only be described as $#!! happens.

I watched a program go from the penthouse to the outhouse, from destiny to the dirt roads. I watched a team who had dreams of being one of the greats and becoming a trendsetter for the next generation of college football turn into just another small conference team.

Yep… tonight I witnessed the final night of the movement that was the Boise State Broncos drive for national respect… and the way it ended is so gut-wrenching and cold that it makes me cringe with every tap of my keys.

First and foremost give credit to the Nevada Wolfpack; they won this game Boise State didn’t lose it. Nevada fought off a 24-7 deficit by bringing its vaunted running attack back from the dead with a 239 yard second half. Colin Kaepernick capped off a stellar career by leading his team back from the dead one last time on senior night in Reno and murdering Boise State’s BCS dreams.

Those dreams are the subject of debate that Boise will once again never have the chance of realizing.

Teams like the one that Boise fielded are once in a lifetime for mid-major programs. UNLV had it in 1990 with Larry Johnson, Greg Anthony and Stacy Augmon for the basketball program. Butler’s basketball program just had it with Gordon Haywood, Matt Howard and Ronald Nored, and Boise had it with a roster full of guys that will play on NFL Sundays from Titus Young to Austin Pettis and even D.J. Martin. They had Kellen Moore who if not for the amazing Cam Newton, would be a shoe in for the Heisman. They had Chris Petersen who is one of the top 5 coaches in America who turned this program into somewhat of a power.

Colin Kaepernick and Nevada won the game just as much as Boise lost it.

Yes they played in the WAC conference which is low on star power and good competition. The likes of San Jose State, Idaho and Wyoming don’t strike fear into anyone’s hearts. However, like most good teams they destroy lesser competition without a sweat leaving no room for error.

When they do get their shots at the big boys (which are few and far in between due to fear of losing to the Broncos) they have proven their worth. They swept a home and home versus Oregon, beat Oklahoma, physically dominated Virginia Tech 4 hours away from Blacksburg in a “Neutral Site” game and beating fellow BCS buster TCU in the Fiesta Bowl last year.

They have proven time and time again that they are not a mid-major program; rather they are a growing power akin to Gonzaga or the aforementioned Butler Bulldogs in college basketball. They belong in the conversation of the national title much like Oregon and Auburn and others though many people are still skeptical of their talent level and level of competition.

Then comes nights like tonight. Nights where Boise State is subject to the same kind of happenstance as other teams in other conferences but since they play in the WAC the microscope is so much brighter. Losing to Nevada, no matter the record, no matter the circumstance, no matter how underrated Kaepernick or Vai Tuau are unacceptable is unacceptable for the #4 ranked team in the country from a small conference who people are saying should play for a title. For Gordon Gee, Nick Saban and other detractors a loss like this proves their point, no matter how unfair it is, that Boise doesn’t belong with the big boys.

If #4 Ohio State or USC loses to #19 Michigan State or Arizona then it’s no big deal, it’s big time college football, $#!! Happens. However, in the life of the small budget BCS buster, $#!! happens isn’t a reality. $#!! can’t happen. You have to beat everyone no matter the competition and when you don’t, you’re just another little team from a little conference. That’s Boise State’s reality when they wake up tomorrow morning.

They are no longer darlings of the college football world. We know they can play with the best… but they lost to Nevada… Nevada. Within minutes of Kyle Brotzman becoming the new age Scott Norwood, the Broncos went from the Rose Bowl, Sugar Bowl or Fiesta Bowl to the Kraft Hunger Bowl or the Humanitarian Bowl. They were somebody’s, now in an instant they’re that cute little team with that funny blue turf. Life on the D-list.

It was torture the way it happened too. Building a 24-7 lead in the fashion that won them 24 straight games with a quick strike offense and a defense that pushed around Nevada’s o-line. Then they stalled and Nevada came back to tie it up at 24-24. Then with the score 31-31 and overtime eminent, Moore had his Heisman moment; a 50 yard completion to Young who somehow got separation from the secondary and hauled in a prayer. It was over, 25 straight and a win over Utah State away from another BCS game. The Brotzman supplanted Steve Bartman as the biggest goat that sports has seen.

Kyle Brotzman... the new Scott Norwood.

He missed to chip shot field goals in the center of the field, wide left, wide right. Kellen Moore screamed in anguish as the second shot missed and Boise was on the ropes. Then Nevada’s walk-on kick Anthony Martinez did what Brotzman couldn’t, he ended the game by hitting a dead center 35 yarder… and ended the Boise State dream.

I have no ties to Boise, I just wanted the establishment of college football to be shaken, I wanted it to be blown up, and I wanted the little guy to prove that they belong just as much as the big boys and I was sure that this was the team to do it. they had it all, the QB, the coach, the players and the fear of every major conference foe… and in two seconds it was gone. Now Boise State is no better than Hawaii, SMU or… well… Nevada.

Sure TCU is still there, and they will be in a BCS game after they finish 12-0 this Saturday. However, if they play in the BCS title game it won’t feel the same. Boise was a dream team, the chosen team to upset the established order. They started with Oklahoma, progressed to another level by beating Virginia Tech and they were supposed to be the team that reached the mountain top of the BCS. Yet after Friday night in Reno reality sets back in as they get ready for the Aggies on Saturday next week. They’re just another team.

I know they’re better than LSU, Wisconsin, UCONN or any other major conference team that’ll play in a BCS game. They showed what they can do on the national stage. But they lost to Nevada in a cold night in little Reno, Nevada. That’s all that matters. Not that Nevada is 11-1, not that they have the most potent rushing offense in the league, but because they’re Nevada. You don’t lose to Nevada if you beat Virginia Tech and Oregon. That’s the way it is, and that’s why Boise State is once again just another mid-major.


Gee Gets It Wrong With TCU and Boise

President Gee's comments have sparked another BCS controversy

Going to Ohio State University in the last few years I’ve developed a little bit of an affinity for our school President E. Gordon Gee.

The little man with the bowtie, coke bottle glasses and satellite ears is 76 years old going on 23 it seems. When he comes to any event on campus it’s like that scene from Goodfellas when Robert De Niro’s character Jimmy Conway walked into that gambling hall with a young Henry Hill fetching him seven and seven’s, everyone goes nuts.

Kids stop partying and dancing to run over to him and shake his hand or take a picture or tell him they love him. He’s the biggest rock star on campus and we all admire him. I’ve even had the pleasure of waiting on him a few times at the restaurants I’ve worked at in Columbus and to watch even older people break their strides to talk the guy’s ear off while he’s eating a fish sandwich is hilarious.

He deserves it though. The guy runs a great university with great programs and one hell of an athletic department that features a perennial top ten program that fills up a 100,000 seat stadium every week. That program brings in a ton of revenue from its dealings with the Big Ten Network as well, which is one of the nation’s top three conferences with marquee matchups every week that catch the eye of the viewer.

So by being in an elite program in the Big Ten, as well as serving as President at Vanderbilt in the SEC, Gee decided to let his opinion be known about the possibility of an undefeated TCU or Boise State playing for the national title. Let’s just say the folks down in Dallas or Boise won’t be rushing to shake the man’s hand anytime soon.

Gee said that he doesn’t believe the Frogs or Broncos should play in the BCS title game because they lack the elite schedule and competitive balance that an Ohio State has to become a title contender.

He feels that since the Buckeyes don’t play “little sisters of the poor” as he so eloquently put it, like the Frogs or Broncos (OOOOOHHH SNAP!), that schools such as his and the other elite programs in the country regularly have the edge when it comes to having an inside track on the national title game.

Pretty much all Gee did was something that every BCS conference coach and president wanted to say about the little guys from the little conferences that are getting all of the attention. They don’t want the little guys to take the spotlight from the 80,000 seat stadiums with the million dollar facilities that teams like OSU and Oklahoma, and more importantly take their money. The BCS games hand out 18 million dollars to each participant who adds little more to the pot for spending on their facilities and coaches and bowties.

What Gee forgets to think about and mention is this… if everyone doesn’t think that TCU and Boise State play tough enough non-conference schedules and that they should schedule tougher competition… then why not play them? Oh wait, because everyone is scared too, including Ohio State.

Virginia Tech brought Boise east and couldn't keep up.

Boise and TCU can’t get a fair shake at playing a better non-conference schedule because every time they try to play someone in a neutral site game every big school says no unless it’s at their house. TCU and Boise were only able to get Oregon State to come to their houses this year and look what happened, they got beat up. Then there was the Virginia Tech game for Boise which was technically a neutral site in Washington D.C…. that was 2 hours from Tech’s campus, and a ten hour flight from Boise.

But the result is what scares teams. Boise flew half way across the country and beat up the Hokies and won the game late 33-30. The first half was all Boise in every aspect of the game. Games like that one, the TCU upset of Oklahoma at Norman three years ago and Utah’s thrashing of Alabama in the Sugar Bowl are the dirty little secret that the big boys are scared to talk about when they criticize the schedules of the smaller schools. Deep down they know that these schools on any given day have just as much talent, just as good a coaching and can beat the Texas’s, Alabama’s and others in an instant.

That’s why you’ll never see Boise versus Ohio State in Cincinnati, because the Buckeyes don’t want a loss on national TV to a small program like Boise even if it is in their own backyard.

Another point… has Mr. Gee seen Ohio State’s non-conference schedule lately?

They never left Columbus this year to face mighty Marshall, Ohio and Eastern Michigan. Oooohhh!!!

It’s not just the Buckeyes either. No.2 Auburn had hard fought matchups against Arkansas State, Louisiana-Lafayette and Chattanooga, no.7 Stanford scheduled powerhouses Sacramento State and Wake Forest and no.1 Oregon squeaked by New Mexico and Portland State by a combined 141-0. By the way all of these games were at home.

Then when the so-called elite played neutral site games or road games against competition that couldn’t touch the Frogs or Broncos on the field, look what happened. Oklahoma almost to a rebuilding Cincinnati team at Paul Brown Stadium, LSU barely escaped North Carolina and even Iowa got blitzed by an upstart Arizona. So just imagine if any of those teams dared to face TCU or Boise on a neutral field… trouble, trouble, trouble.

What Gee doesn’t understand is that the big boys schedule worse competition than Boise plays on a weekly basis in the WAC. I mean can Minnesota beat Fresno State or Nevada? Because Illinois or Wisconsin couldn’t, I don’t think Mississippi State could go to Salt Lake City and come out with a win, and you know how pitiful the Pac-10 is against the Mountain West. So if San Jose State and Hawaii are the little sisters of the poor then what do we call Indiana, Vanderbilt and Kansas? Distant cousins?

As much as I love Gordon Gee the person, I think the president misspoke about the level of competition at TCU and at Boise State. I’ve watched the Buckeyes, Horned Frogs and Broncos if the Buckeyes got to play these guys in the Rose Bowl or wherever, it wouldn’t be a good outcome for the Bucks.

Boise’s speed and quickness with Kellen Moore’s precision passing would eat up the Ohio State secondary, and TCU’s defense would eat up OSU’s running game and force Terrelle Pryor to win the game for the Bucks.

(By the way: if we had a quiz of quarterbacks and I gave you no names just a description of play who would you choose? The QB with only 6 interceptions in the last two seasons that is a precise passer who makes few mistakes, the Nation’s leading QB in wins in the last four years with 40 wins to 4 losses, or the 6 foot 6 QB with great skill but who routinely makes mistakes and wilts under pressure? Now guess the QB and the school that they play at. Here’s a hint: the first two play for Boise and TCU.)

You understand where Gee comes from in a business sense, but on the field it makes no sense. TCU and Boise deserve just as much of a shot as Ohio State, Auburn or Oregon at playing for the national title. If you complain about who they play, man up and knock them down it’s that simple. Unfortunately for the Buckeyes they don’t have room for the Broncos pr the Horned Frogs, they have big time matchups versus Akron, Toledo, Miami (Ohio), Colorado and UAB all at home in the next two years. I guess the little sisters of the poor weren’t available.

 


Alabama And Oregon Make Statements

Who's next on Alabama's menu?

I don’t want to play Alabama… Or Oregon.

If Ohio State plays either one of those two teams in the national title game… If they should happen to make it that far… Then I’m not watching. Not after what I witnessed on Saturday.

Alabama and Oregon proved beyond a shadow of doubt that they are the two best teams in the country with their beatdowns of Florida and Stanford.

Alabama did it with their trademark no holds bard, strangling defense that sent John Brantley running for the sidelines. The gel Florida to six points on offense and made the passing game virtually an afterthought as Marcel Dareus and company pounded the Gators into submission and let the country know who was number one with a bullet.

Oregon on the other hand used their explosive offense to bludgeon Stanford. The Ducks seem to spot the Cardinal 21 points and fall behind as sort of a way of saying ” is that it?” once Darron Thomas and LaMichael James got going there was no stopping them. Thomas threw for three td’s and ran for another to compliment James’s huge game. James ran for 257 yards and three scores placing him in the top 3 on the mix for the Heisman race with Denard Robinson and Kellen Moore.

The Ducks and Tide right now have no competition to keep them from running away with their conference titles and potentially facing off in the national title game.

Can anyone in the pac-10 stop LaMichael James and company?

The Ducks still have to travel to Southern Cal for a matchup with the Trojans later this month and there’s always the do or die Civil War matchup with Oregon State in December. However neither of those teams have the defensive capability to come close to stopping the Ducks offensively.

Alabama you would think has a tougher road ahead in the mighty SEC, however the conference isn’t as strong as past years would implicate (ah-gem Georgia). There next possible tough opponent would be LSU in death valley next month. However, LSU is so flawed offensively that if Bama puts up 14 points that would be more than enough to put the Tigers to sleep. After that comes the Iron Bowl and the defenseless Auburn Tigers and a rematch possibly against Florida in the SEC title game. After Saturday I’m pretty sure Florida wants no part of the Tide for awhile.

No one should want any part of Alabama or Oregon for that matter. Both teams made statements showing the entire country that no one can hang with them outright. That goes for Boise state, TCU, Ohio State and anyone else that was watching and had doubts about them. We all know who number one and number two in the country is. Don’t believe me? Just ask Urban Meyer and Jim Harbaugh how good the Tide and Ducks are.

Others making statements this weekend:

– Michigan State proving that they are no slouches by taking out dark horse title contender Wisconsin.

– Denard Robinson with almost 500 yards of total offense and making the Heisman his for the taking.

– Baltimore going into Pittsburgh and beating the Steelers to claim the top spot in the AFC.

– The New York Giants defense bringing back memories of the Lawrence Taylor and Harry Carson days with a ten sack dominating performance against the bears last night to put them in a three way tie atop the division

(shotout to the Giants fans for booing Tiki Barber as well for letting him know that he’s still a punk.)

– Lastly… The Rams may surprise people… Not saying they’ll make the playoffs but just watch them play. Coach Steve Spagnuolo has them on the right track.