College Football Mailbag (cont.)
Posted: Wednesday August 1, 2007 12:52PM; Updated: Wednesday August 1, 2007 2:20PM
After watching the TV Guide clip of Jordana Spiro, I'm going to say it would be a bit too difficult to have a crush on a girl with a deeper voice than mine. I'm sticking with Jenna for another year.
You know, I've been watching the HBO show Big Love intently all season (it's just so darn intense!), and the most recent episode got me to thinking: You know, besides the overwhelming financial burden, the perpetual need for secrecy, the constant threat of arrest, the loopy parents, brother and sister-in-law and the ongoing feud with two creepy, homicidal cult leaders -- Bill Henrickson's got himself a pretty sweet set-up. When he wants the support of a strong, matronly woman, he can go to Barb. When he's feeling the need for a little warmth and tenderness, there's Nikki. And when he just wants to get his groove on with a hot, young wild child, he's got Margene.
So I was wondering -- how would the Mailbag audience feel about multiple Celebrity Crushes? That way we could continue to enjoy both Jenna's sweet and subtle beauty and Jordana's sassy, tomboy cuteness. Of course, we'd need to add a third wife ... er, crush (and not Ginnifer Goodwin herself, because that would just be corny). In fact, much like Bill's coffee-shop waitress, I've already got a potential candidate in mind. She's not exactly under the radar, but I wouldn't call her obvious, either. Her recent hit movie has been on TV non-stop lately, and I think I'm starting to develop a certifiable crush.
That is, of course, if it's OK with you guys. (And, I suppose, Jenna and Jordana.)
I'm curious to see what your thoughts are about Mike Stoops' future at Arizona. He's entering his fourth season now and hasn't really shown much improvement as far as wins and losses. I think he's had plenty of time to get the players he wants and to implement his system. Is he shown the door if the 'Cats don't get a bowl bid this year?
The simple answer to your question is, yes, I think he'll be booted if Arizona finishes below .500. (The Wildcats actually did finish 6-6 last year but were not invited to a bowl.) However, I feel fairly certain they'll do better than that. Arizona has in fact gotten better every year under Stoops, even if the progress has felt painfully slow at times. As you said, he's upped the program's recruiting quite a bit (Stoops' 2005 and '06 classes were both ranked in the top-25 nationally), and as expected, the former Oklahoma defensive guru has developed Arizona into a defensive-minded team. His problem has been in finding any semblance of consistency on offense.
To that end, Stoops made an interesting hire in the offseason, bringing in Sonny Dykes as his new offensive coordinator. Dykes, the 37-year-old son of former Texas Tech coach Spike Dykes, is actually a Mike Leach protégé, having worked with him both at Kentucky under Hal Mumme and on Leach's Texas Tech staff the past seven seasons (including the past two as co-offensive coordinator). Dykes plans to run the full-on Leach "Air Raid" offense, which should not only help the Wildcats become more explosive but also allow them to actually protect QB Willie Tuitama for a change. Arizona has allowed a staggering 52 sacks the past two seasons, and Tuitama endured multiple concussions last season. In Dykes' offense, the line splits are so wide and the majority of the passes are so quick that it's much harder for the defense to get to the quarterback. Depending on how well the Wildcats adapt to the new system, they could well be the surprise of the Pac-10.
In response to your challenge to name a Baylor player past or present, you seem to have forgotten about Mike Singletary, who apparently had a fairly good career. Who knew?
I'd just like to point out that this was one of about 15 e-mails I received chiding me about "forgetting" Mike Singletary. I'd also like to point out that the exact wording of my sentence was, "I defy anyone outside of Big 12 country to name a Baylor player, recent or current." Either some of you have a far different notion of the word "recent" than I do, or this is yet another reason to be frightened about the reading comprehension level in this country.
On another note, congratulations to the two of you who came up with recent Bears punter Daniel Sepulveda.
For two years you've been dodging my question. When will Georgia coach Mark Richt start to feel the heat for never making the BCS title game, let alone bringing a national title to Athens? It seems like every year the Bulldogs are overhyped and every year they load the NFL, but it never translates to the BCS Championship Game. What gives?
It's not that I've been dodging it -- I just can't believe anyone would ask that with a straight face. The last time I checked, Richt has produced four 10-win seasons and two SEC titles in a six-year span. That's two more titles, by the way, than Georgia had won in the previous 20 years. Perhaps you'd prefer to go back to Jim Donnan? Or Ray Goff?
Not that Jeff represents the average Georgia fan (I hope), but I lived in Atlanta for five years, and it always baffled me just how inflated a perception people have there of that program's place in the national landscape. Keep in mind, because of my age, I didn't start following college football until about the mid-'80s, so I missed the Herschel Walker glory years. To me, Georgia was just an average, top-20 type program for most of my life. But to listen to their fans, you'd think Georgia was a USC or Notre Dame. They've won two national titles in their entire history, the last one coming 27 years ago. BYU won one more recently.
I think part of the problem is that many old-school Georgia types still view arch-rival Florida as their measuring stick. Yes, it's true, the Dawgs used to beat up on the Gators regularly in the '70s and '80s, but that changed in a big way after Spurrier took over Florida. (The Gators have won 15 of the past 17 meetings). Times have changed, and both because of Spurrier's legacy there and because it's the flagship school in the most talent-rich state in the country, Florida is now one of the elite programs nationally; Georgia is still more of a regional power. Which is not to say the Dawgs shouldn't beat the Gators from time to time or make an occasional run at the national title, but to hold Richt or any other coach to a national-title-or-bust standard is just plain ludicrous.
What do you think about making the BCS Championship Game like the Little League World Series, whereby the SEC champion gets an automatic berth in the title game, and the rest of the world (other conferences) fights to play for the other slot. That might finally put the SEC on even ground with the other weaker conferences.
I take it back -- that's ludicrous. Jeff and Ryan, do you guys happen to be neighbors?
Why are you and most of the others at ESPN so ignorant of the quality of football played in the SEC? We have the best coaches, players, as well as fans. If your pro-northern cronies would quit hyping up the "Big Two," then I would not have to write such vicious e-mails.
It just never ends, does it?
3 of 3