SI.com college football writer Stewart Mandel shares his commentary, analysis and random tidbits on the latest developments around the country.
11/04/2007 05:37:00 PM
Five Things We Learned This Weekend
With his epic 323-yard performance against South Carolina, Darren McFadden may have jumped to the front of the Heisman race.
Wesley Hitt/Getty Images
1) That Darren McFadden is back (not that he ever left). He started the season as the undisputed player to beat for the 2007 Heisman Trophy, but the way these work, McFadden faded from the discussion as his Razorbacks faded from national relevancy with three early losses. It’s not like D-Mac had suddenly lost his supreme abilities; it’s that his team lost some football games. (Not to mention a 122-yard game against Chattanooga isn't the kind of performance that sends voters' hearts racing.)
But following McFadden’s epic performance in Saturday night’s 48-36 win over No. 23 South Carolina, the Heisman electorate is going to have some serious re-thinking to do. Dennis Dixon, Tim Tebow, Matt Ryan (whose brief moment in the sun ended in pretty humbling fashion Saturday night), Chase Daniel -– all are putting up big numbers every week for teams in conference and/or national-title contention, which has pretty much become the Heisman model over the past decade or so. But the award is supposed to go to the nation's "most outstanding player" -- and what McFadden did Saturday night was the dictionary definition of "outstanding."
The stat line: 35 carries for an SEC-record 323 yards and a touchdown. Plus, a 1-yard touchdown while lined up in Razorbacks’ slick WildHog formation. Amazingly, teammate Felix Jones added 163 yards and three touchdowns of his own. And Arkansas needed every one of those yards to fend off the 6-3 Gamecocks, whose quarterback, Blake Mitchell, was having his own way with the Razorbacks’ porous defense. Afterward, coach Houston Nutt likened McFadden to Barry Sanders. Eric Dickerson is another common comparison for the junior, who is now third nationally in rushing yards (1,316) -- despite sharing carries with fellow 1,000-yard rusher Jones (1,026).
It’s too early to say whether McFadden will win the trophy, but I predict the choice coming down to an extremely difficult decision between him and Oregon’s Dixon, a guy who’s putting up his own ridiculous numbers (68 percent completions, 20 touchdowns, three interceptions, plus 549 rushing yards and eight rushing TDs) for a team that’s likely going to finish with a much better record.
2) That the wrong Big 12 team is ranked No. 4. It’s been an amazing season for the once-beleaguered Big 12, which currently has four teams (Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri and Texas) ranked in the top 15. The problem is, the wrong one is highest-ranked.
No disrespect to 8-1 Oklahoma, which has a fine team and may well wind up winning its second straight league title. But c’mon, now. Kansas has played nine games now. They’re one of just two remaining undefeated teams (along with Ohio State) from a BCS conference. Why do we pollsters still have the 9-0 Jayhawks ranked lower than the 8-1 Sooners?
I, much like the rest of America, have been respectful, but still a tad skeptical, in regards to Kansas’ accomplishments to date. The fact is, they did not play a significant non-conference opponent, and they’ve yet to play any of the other three highly ranked Big 12 teams. At the same time, however, Kansas has won at Colorado (something Oklahoma -- which, if you haven’t noticed, is not nearly as dominant on the road -- could not do). And they just put up a staggering 76 points on admittedly hapless Nebraska. They’ve won games with both their defense (holding the Buffs and Texas A&M to 14 and 11 points, respectively, on the road) and their offense (Saturday’s was their sixth game scoring 45 or more points). I think it’s safe to conclude Kansas is pretty darn good.
When I filled out my AP ballot Saturday night, I kept the same top-three -- LSU, Ohio State and Oregon -- that I’ve had for several weeks now. They are all teams I’ve seen in person win significant contests and have emerged in my eyes as the head of the class nationally. The Buckeyes are undefeated, while the Tigers and Ducks have now won numerous games against ranked foes. But I could see no remaining reason why I should continue to rank Kansas lower than teams like Oklahoma or West Virginia which have no more distinguished resumes than the Jayhawks -- not to mention they, unlike Oklahoma, haven't lost a game. I bumped them from eighth to fourth. They’ll have a chance to move even higher if they keep it up; 5-4 Oklahoma State and 8-1 Missouri await them next -- and, if they can win those, probably a date with the Sooners themselves.
3) That LSU could be pretty darn good ... if it ever gets its act together. Early in the season, the Tigers amazed me with their seemingly endless wealth of talented athletes; now, they amaze me more for the fact that they keep winning. Let’s face it, Les Miles' 8-1 team could just as easily be 5-4 right now. In each of the Tigers last three wins (Florida, Auburn and Alabama), they trailed in the late stages of the game, and all three comebacks required ridiculously clutch plays by the guys on the field and absurdly huge strategic risks by Miles. The latest came Saturday in Tuscaloosa, when Miles’ latest gamble -- down by seven, facing a fourth and 4 at the Tide 32 with about three minutes remaining -- turned into an Early Doucet catch-and-go touchdown to tie the game. They won by forcing a John Parker Wilson fumble four plays later.
Afterward, Miles made no bones about the fact that while his team may have pulled out the win -– and is now back up to No. 2 in the BCS standings -- the Tigers aren’t playing anywhere near their best football. The fact is, all these last-minute heroics probably would not have been necessary if the Tigers could ever put together a complete game (or field their complete team). The last time they did, as you may recall, they blew a pretty darn good Virginia Tech team right out of the stadium. Since then, however, there’s always been at least one thing missing, whether it was top receiver Doucet missing five games with a groin injury, their highly touted defense letting them down during key spurts against Kentucky and Auburn or QB Matt Flynn struggling like he did for most of Saturday’s game (throwing three interceptions), one in which change-of-pace QB Ryan Perrilloux surely could have come in handy were he not being disciplined for his part in a late-night bar altercation.
In the end, however, all that truly matters is that even with all those blemishes, LSU survived one of the nation’s toughest schedules with just a sole defeat and put themselves back on solid footing to get to New Orleans. If and when we ever see the complete Tigers, there’s little doubt in my mind we’ll be seeing the nation’s scariest team (hence why I've kept them atop my ballot). Keep shooting themselves in the foot, however, and their luck will almost certainly run out.
4) That Florida State should be much better than it is. Saturday night, Bobby Bowden's team did something it used to do with regularity for a decade-and-a-half: Go on the road and squash some wannabe powerhouse’s dreams. Mack Brown’s North Carolina teams, the Joe Hamilton Georgia Tech teams, even a couple of Steve Spurrier's great Florida teams: All had their visions of grandeur squashed by superior Seminoles squads. And it usually happened in the same exact way as FSU’s upset of No. 2 Boston College on Saturday -- with a dominant defensive performance by the ‘Noles. Watching LB Geno Hayes notch FSU’s third Matt Ryan interception of the night and returning it for the game-sealing touchdown, it was as if the calendar had suddenly turned back a decade from 2007 to 1997. (Except that Chestnut Hill was not one of the 'Noles' regular road destinations back then).
But back then, the 'Noles were in the midst of a staggering run of 14 straight national top-four finishes. Even after Saturday night’s win, this FSU team is not even ranked in the AP poll. And while BC remains the front-runner in the ACC’s Atlantic Division, the ‘Noles sit mired at fourth, having lost conference games to Clemson, Wake Forest and arch-rival Miami (which itself is a mere 2-3 in the conference following Saturday’s loss to 4-5 N.C. State). It’d be one thing if FSU was just plain crappy, and Saturday night’s result was a fluke. On the contrary, what must frustrate ‘Noles fans to no end is that their team has proven capable of beating teams like BC and Alabama but has lost three league games by a touchdown or less. (Last year’s 7-6 team had five such close losses.)
No one would suggest that these ‘Noles are as loaded with talent as some of their predecessors, but you don’t need to be to contend in the current, mediocre ACC. Think Coastal Division leader Virginia has as many future pros on its roster as FSU? Not likely. The reality is, the ‘Noles would be BCS contenders right now if they could simply achieve consistency -- something they’ve lacked for several years now. Take a wild guess whose shoulders that falls on.
5) That Eugene, Oregon, is my kind of town. The idea behind this weekend’s "Oregon Trail" blog series was to share with you, the readers, the sights and sounds of a weekend on campus for a big game at the same time I was experiencing them for the first time myself. I only hope you had half as much fun reading about it as I did being here. (If you missed them, you can catch up starting with this entry and working your way back up to this one chronologically).
By no means was this my typical work weekend, and I harbor no delusions of being able to do it again anytime soon. But for one weekend, at least, it was incredibly fun to re-live college life, from standing in the student section at a basketball game to dropping in on a fraternity’s pregame tailgate to joining my weekend buddies Goss and A.J. on a "tour" of Eugene’s bars (Saturday night entailed my third visit in two days to campus staple Rennie's) to watching them flirt with the freshmen and sophomores. (I did draw the line at returning to their apartment for beer pong late Friday night. The goal of the weekend: Have fun, but don’t do anything I wouldn’t want to have caught on a cell-phone camera and splashed on the Internet. ... So far, so good.). Even now, as I write this, I’m sitting at a Starbucks surrounded by college kids with highlighters and text books -– one last dose before heading to the airport and returning to reality.
Just like I said in the Mailbag last week, I leave Eugene with yet another reminder how the college-football experience is different -- not better, not worse -- everywhere you go. As A.J. told me, Oregon is "a great football school ... during certain hours," and indeed, after listening to 60,000 fans at Autzen Stadium create nearly as much noise as 90,000 in Gainesville or Baton Rouge, after watching them pour on to the field in celebration in one of the sport’s truly universal scenes, within hours of the game’s end, life here basically returned to normal. Though Rennie’s was packed to the gills with both guys and girls in Dennis Dixon or "old school" Joey Harrington jerseys, neither SportsCenter highlights from the game, nor "No. 3 Oregon" appearing on the screen next to Kirk Herbstreit's face, elicited much of a reaction from the crowd.
But don’t take that as a sign of apathy. There’s no question they love their Ducks here just as Oklahoma fans love their Sooners or Ohio State fans love their Buckeyes -- they’re just a little bit mellower about it. Being a mellow guy myself, perhaps that’s why I enjoyed it here so much.
So if you believe Kansas should be ranked higher than Oklahoma, you must believe that if Kansas plays Oklahoma in the Big XII championship, the Jayhawks will win? Because I sure don't. I am from Kansas and go to school at OU, so I respect both schools, but the thing the Sooners have going for them is they have experience in the championship game, and I don't believe KU has the offensive power to overcome a defense like OU's. We shut down Texas A&M last night and scored 42 on them, while Kanas could only score 19 on A&M's pathetic defense. Even if our game had been in College Station, I think the result would have been the same. OU may not have played spectacularly on the two Big XII road games we've played in so far, but when it came to a neutral field, high pressure situation in Dallas against Texas, the Sooners responded just fine.
Stewart, you are abslutely right. While I have never been to Eugene, it isn't much different than other laid back West Coast cities, Seattle, Santa Barbara, Anaheim or San Diego. It is what makes the West Coast special and served as my inspiration to write The West Coast Bias Blog.
The people are also more liberal and open-minded which is nice. When I've been to Notre Dame or Tennessee all of the fans believe that their respective teams own College Football.
It is nice to the West Coast fans, who have lives outside of sports, get some respect from Stewart.
Why do I think you'd prefer to rank Ohio State number 8 or 9, but can't justify it?
Don't fall too much in love with Les Miles, Stewart. He strikes me as the kind of guy that is sitting on 19 and shouts "Hit me!" His riverboat gambling ways are gonna cost him eventually and break your heart.
Prediction: Ohio State vs. Oklahoma in the National Championship Game.
I agree with Nicole. People who think Kansas should be ranked higher than OK should have to put big money on Kansas, should they play. Stew was late getting this out. Perhaps it is harder to travel to the west coast as Hawaii says, than to travel to Hawaii.
That is typical Eugene for you. We enjoy our football, but we have so many other things to do in our lives. Hiking, camping, fishing, biking and also white water rafting. If we win, that is awesome, if we lose, we still have to other options to do.
Who are the idiots in the polls that have LSU ranked #1. They needed a miraculous 4th quarter of screwing up by a very average Alabama team to pull out that game. I am not a fan of Ohio State, but I do think Kansas is impressive.
Hey porks....Texas will not win out either. Hating OU will keep you awake at night.
No way is Kansas better than Oklahoma. They are the last of the pretender unbeatens. (And no, I don't even count Hawaii in the conversation...) I seriously doubt that they beat Missouri, let alone Oklahoma. They beat a Nebraska Team that had no heart for the game or its coach.
My top 5.... (1) Ohio State - the most balanced team in college football. (2) LSU - Outstanding defense, jekyl & hyde offense. (3) West Virginia - the most dangerous team in college football. (4) Oklahoma - Very balanced team, powerfull defense. (5) Oregon - Explosive offense.
The question isn't so much who is the best team in the regular season, but who is built for a one game season (BCS Bowls). Oregon, who has a spread offense that relies on timing, will be less of a threat after a month off. (See Ohio State last year...) Oklahoma has a red-shirt freshman quarterback, and when he plays a great defense in the BCS will have some troubles. West Virginia may be the most dangerous team in college football when Slaton & White are healthy, but will suffer because of the perceptions of the Big East. That leaves Ohio State and LSU. I actually give the edge to LSU in the one game season scenario because of their defensive line. The Buckeyes are certainly built better to play in January though. It will be a great game. Tressel will want to beat him since Les Miles is going to be coaching Michigan next year anyway.
NO, it DOESN'T mean that you think OU would lose to Kansas. It's simply saying that considering the games that have been played, a 9-0 team deserves to be ranked higher than an 8-1 team whose loss came against a mediocre team.
Who's to say that Florida couldn't or wouldn't beat Kansas also? But a team with 3 losses can't be ranked ahead of a team that's undefeated.
Maybe like Isaac suggests, all teams with no losses should be ranked higher than any 1-loss team. Hey we can eliminate all thinking by putting the names of the no loss teams in a hat and drawing number 1. No more bias, no more need for brains.
If you question the strength of LSU, why do you still have them number one? And if you give props to Kansas as impressive, why do you have Ohio State ranked so much higher when they have played the weaker schedule?
You, like most other voters in the polls, place far too much emphasis on the elite powers in college football when the 85 scholarship level has evened the playing field.
The playing field is level, the voting process in the polls still upholds the elite traditions and until we get to the point where we settle this on the field, your poll is no more valid than any of the others.
Like the mindset of West Coast bias, this is why I have created my website - BCSBusters and which is why I have written a book manuscript on the subject. Calling out others, when you practice the same bias is not giving the readers the full story!
I grew up in Michigan but have lived in California for a number years now. It kills me that "sports fans" out here act like those of us from the Midwest or the South or any pother part of the country spend out entire lives around the tv watching our favorite teams. Yes we love our teams, and we are very passionate about it, but we do lots of other things as well. I skiied, played pond hockey, went sledding and did a number of other things in the winter. In the summer there is just as much to do in the mid west as there is in the west. Before you go an aaccuse people from other parts of the country from having closed minds or not doing anything else besides watching sports, visit the rest of the country and educate yourself first. And while we're on the topic of passionate fans, having livede here in La I have seen the same kind of attitude about owning the sport from USC people and have seen UCLA fans act completely destroyed after losses.
Nicole - where was all that OU championship game experience when they choked on the road at Colorado? (the same team KU beat in Colorado) Thats the problem with polls - everyone relies on "previous experience" or the "traditional powers" theories, and doesn't pay attention to anything on the field. You state that OU may not have played spectacularly on the road, but isn't that the true test of a team - winning on the road?
Joshua - You talk about OK choking at Colorado. Last year you could have talked about Fla choking at Auburn. Kansas has played no one since it is obvious that K-St and Nebr (assuming they still intend to field a team) are not much competition. OK has played a much tougher schedule.
I though the rankings were supposed to be about what a team has done and what they are currently doing, not what people think they could do if things go right. I understand talking about what a team may be able to do during the early weeks of the polls, but after 10 weeks it should be about what the team has done and how they are playing now, not about how you think they should be playing. If you think that LSU has been the best team so far this season and is currently playng as the best team then vote keep voting for them as #1. If not, vote for whoever you believe has been playing the best and is currently playing well. Give up the SEC hype and vote for who you think is most deserving right now, not who you think should be most deserving.
"teams like Oklahoma or West Virginia which have no more distinguished resumes than the Jayhawks -- not to mention they, unlike Oklahoma, have lost a game."
Stewart, you're good at your job, but please buy a new pair of proof-reading glasses, my friend. Oklahoma has a loss, not Kansas, which you're obviously aware of. Too many little errors for a professional column and website, and your editor isn't catching them. Not to be naggy, I really enjoy your writing. Those things are annoying though.
If Kansas is going to get to the BS championship game, they have to beat Mizzou (#6)and Oklahoma (#5) in two neutral site games. This willbe extremely tough. If this happens and LSU still gets into the championship game, it will be an unmitigated travesty. The highest ranked team that LSU has beaten is VA Tech at #11. The SEC is full of mediocre teams, not the conference it used to be.
If KU goes undefeated ang gets beaten out by a once beaten team, the Big 12 should pull out of the BCS.
you're right, that would be ridiculous. but KU has a lot to do before they can worry about stuff like that, they still have OK St on the road as well, i believe. seems like every year there's a team that looks like they could end up being in position to have a major gripe, but never end up getting to that point. and KU isn't anywhere near closing it out yet.
i think a one loss LSU getting in over a one loss Oregon would be a shame as well. but again, a long way to go. it's never quite this convoluted by the end. crazy year though, who knows.
Thanks for coming out and checking out Oregon. I hope you'll come check out the student body section for the Oregon / UCLA game. I am sure the students wouldn't mind and neither would the AD. It should give you an advantage should you get the cover the Olympic Trials.
Since Mac Court will be replaced in a couple of years a story done by you would make for a great chapter in Mac Court History book.
Charles, but the fact of the matter is OU has 1 loss. Kansas has NO losses. The loss for OU was a win for KU. All forecasting aside, you cannot predict what will happen to KU, they need to be highly ranked until they fall. Kind of like why Stewart keeps LSU at #1 over a team with a much better defense, OSU.
Howie == Did you blow off the rest of the day's action after your Duck lovefest?
Let me tell you what you missed: Mizzou 55 CU 10 (CU's worst home loss in 25 yrs., MU gets 598 yards, hold Buffs to less than 200)
A month ago: KU 19 CU 14 (eh)
KU gives up nearly 40 pts and 500 yds to woeful Nebraska's 2nd string QB. ANYONE who watched that game saw a pathetic NU defense that gave up again and again. The KU and Reesling hype is a waste of our time.
Mizzou will beat KU by 4 TDS
AND OF ALL THE ONE LOSS TEAMS, MU has the "best LOSS" (at Okla. where no one wins vs. Oregon's HOME loss)
Granted, Mcfadden had an extrodinary night, in what otherwise has been a lackluster season for him. On the otherhand Tebow has TWICE as many touchdowns has his nearest competition,has a quarterback rating in the stratosphere and has unique focus and drive to win. Comparisions and suggestions that other players are on the same plane as Tebow do not do the game or his talents and performance justice.
Stewart, you really shouldn't make any comments about Big 12 football, since you obviously don't have a clue what's happening in the conference.
Just too many of your, "I confess, I didn't watch [Big 12] game because I was tied up watching the exciting ending of [Big 10] game." Remember?
So now just leave it alone, since there aren't enought hours in the day for you to focus on SEC, Big East, ACC and Big 10 and have time for anything else - Oh - did I leave out USC? I guess that problem is what opened up time for BC for you, wasn't it?
I'm amazed that you now have your new love-child, Matt Ryan, calling it a "coming out party" for his media annointed Heisman run, instead of even commenting/noticing that he couldn't score a single point for 58 minutes in that game.
But I guess if you're invested in BC, then you just have to ignore some things, right?
Hey, everetttm, I'll take that bet. I bet you were saying that about Florida last year, too, weren't you? About how Florida couldn't possibly stay on the field with mighty Ohio State. Face the facts guy, the SEC is the best conference in the land and we kill each other. Top to bottom, there is no better conference. You think Oklahoma will beat LSU? Oklahoma who lost to Colorado? Talk about an overrated team, Oklahoma IS the very definition of overrated, just like they were in 2003 and 2004.
Hey Oklahoma, Auburn wants their shot at USC back you overrated, live off of biased writer's votes program.
So hate on the SEC. But when LSU rips Ohio State this year and Georgia beats whomever in the sUGAr Bowl, y'all won't be saying much of anything.
The arrogance of the Big Ten is breathtaking...I am sorry, but cable customers should not be forced to pay for the Big Ten network as part of their "expanded" basic cable package. Customers who want the Big Ten network should have the option of paying for it as a premium service.
Let's be clear -- this is about the Big Ten greedily trying to extort money from every basic cable subscriber in its 15-state footprint. Don't the residents of these states do enough to support Big Ten universities -- especially huge programs like Ohio State with lavish athletic budgets -- without the conference trying to squeeze out even more money?
It's astonishing to me that the chancellor of the University of Wisconsin would lower himself to the point of shamelessly peddling a TV network and suggesting that customers switch their cable companies. Do you people have no shame?
Also, to be clear, I have no affiliation whatsoever with any of the cable companies. I am simply an outraged consumer.
Hey everettm1, remember a few years back when Auburn went undefeated and didn't make it to the BCS championship game, it happened before and it could happen again. I doubt VERY SERIOUSLY that the Big 12 would pull out of the BCS if an undefeated KU does not make the championship game. They should play a thougher schedule if the want some respect!
Without reading all the comments I am still amazed at your continual love affair with LSU and you're willingness to rank them number one. It seems that you have in your own words stated that "they could be a pretty darned good team" which brings to mind the sportswriters' mentality of looking at the talent on a team and ranking them based "potential" and not performance, which is what you are ethically bound to do. LSU lost to a now 6 -3 team, was behind much of their last game but yet, everyone, including you continue to give them credit based on "potential" and not performance.
In the matter of a couple weeks, your darling USF who you vaulted into number one has fallen and I guess in less then a week Matt Ryan has reverted to joining the "boys" again.
Although I respect you for putting it out there and for your humility, you shouldn't be so fickle in your analysis and quick to jump on the latest bandwagon. More is expected from a national sports writer and I'm waiting for the day when you become the man among boys.
The buckeyes welcome any challenge from any SEC team. Ohio State learned a lesson last year and has moved on. LSU, Florida, Bama. It doesnt matter bring it on!!!!!!!! Forever Loyal Forever Royal The Ohio State Buckeyes
Hey BCSbusters. What is your solution? How many teams would be in your playoffs and who would they be if the season ended today? Let's see the names. It's easy to attack others but what do you have to offer other than a $20 T-shirt?
For people not knowledgeable with the BIG 10 philosophies let me explain something. Don't take this as an excuse but rather something BIG 10 fans understand, accept and are willing to live with. BIG 10 teams are historically lethargic in the bowl games because the BIG 10 recognizes their athletes are student with families and end the football season before Thanksgiving so the student athletes and families can share important time together. Like it or not, it has a great affect on the performance of a BIG 10 football team and probably contributed to OSU's poor showing in the NC game last year. I'm not in any way taking anything away from Florida and the job their coaching staff did in spanking OSU last year. 50-some days off from competition is much different than 30-something. BIG 10 fans will live with it because we understand it and have priorities other than always coming out on top. With that being said, Florida spanked OSU last year and they deserve all the credit for doing so. Hopefully BIG 10 teams will learn from that and perform better this year. It is worthy to note that the Big 10 was still 2-1 in bowls last year against the SEC and there's nothing you can say about that if you're argument is that the top BIG 10 team would struggle to be 500 in the SEC...it just isn't so and reality, not speculation supports it isn't so.
First off I am a current KU student and while what I write on here may sound bias I apologize in advance if anything comes off that way.
Everyone who sits on here and talks about how we have not played anyone is correct. I have been to every single game this (including the away games)and your right our schedule is not that tough. That is not our fault though. Aside from the non-conference games were in a two year system. Meaning that every two years we switch the big 12 south opponents that we play. I am not saying that we would be able to hang with Oklahoma (at least not yet) but Tech and Texas have done nothing to make me fear them. Tech got rolled at MU and then lost at home to the same CU team that KU beat and OU lost to. Texas lost to KSU at UT and then we beat KSU in Bill Snyder stadium. Props have to be given there even if KSU is mediocre. Texas has dominated OSU in the second half for a while now so I was not surprised at all to see them pull that one out.
Yes I watched first hand Ganz rip our passing defense but even I knew that we were not that improved. We have just played poor passing offenses. Two of his passing tds were on Talib who is a supposed all-american. Why? Because for as good as he is he tries to guess way to much. However, we only gave up a few yards on the ground, around 23 with are first stringers in, more with the back ups. 4 Ints help us out though so feel free to test us, you may win and you may not.
I am not going to say that I am not worried about any game ahead of us. OSU is capable to doing things. Bowman racked up 300 yds on last year. Could happen again. ISU is not a worry since it is at home but yes MU is a great squad. One thing Mizzou fans better hope happens is that KU does go undefeated. Otherwise a victory over both us and OU will not jump you ahead LSU or Oregon (assuming they win out)
I am not saying that people need to jump on the wagon and say were good but you do not need to thrash us. We are not retarded, we know that we haven't played anyone but its whatever to us, were still undefeated and aside from Hawaii and Ohio State fans we have a better record then everyone else.
This has been a hell of a season for us. Do I think we will make it to the national championship game. Of course I do because I am a fan and a student at the school. I am just like you all. However, until someone beats us we are allowed to feel and think were better then you, even Hawaii and Ohio State.
Just as in everything else in life, it's all about the money. The SEC teams won't schedule any good teams on the road because they make so much money at their sold out mega-stadiums, even for POWERS such as Tennessee Tech and the directional Lousiana schools. Especially now, after USC has destroyed so many SEC powers recently. Wasn't Auburn ranked #1 when USC demolished them a few years ago? If the SEC is so great top-to-bottom why won't they schedule any PAC-10 or Big-10 teams away from their cozy home confines? Is Arkansas the only team with the courage to do so? Thought so.
Thank you, thank you, thank you. It's nice to have someone recognize the value of consistency in college football. My hometown Jayhawks have been one of the only teams in the country to bring it each and every week, and yet they're ranked below They may not have the best athletes like USC and LSU, but what they have done on the field speaks for itself. It amazes me that a team like Oklahoma, who I respect a great deal, can be ranked higher than KU, when the Jayhawks have the advantage in the best comparison you can make. They lost in Boulder, we didn't. Seems simple enough to me. Rock Chalk!
tenn did it this year and got beat that is how it goes but tell me who would like to play florida at home with national championship on the line maybe u win maybe not but the bottom line is the championship game should be LSU vs. OREGON
It is rediculous for AP and Coaches poll to move 2-loss Michigan ahead of UConn, which has 1-point loss against a ranked ACC Virginia team. They beat 3 good teams including the highly touted #10 (at the time)So Fla. What about Michigan? Barely won their games .. again this week. Then thy are moved into #12!! R.S.
Ok, the reason(s) LSU is the best(and for the record, i'm a bama fan): 1. They DO have an offense (23rd in the nation, 14th in points scored) 2. Defense wins championships (2nd in the nation in yards 10th in points allowed) 3. They play in the SEC (the reason you say that LSU beats 'mediocre' teams is 'cuz you only look at the records of the teams they beat. No conference game in this league is a sure win[aka: parody]) 4. Even if they don't play their best football, they find a way to win! (see #3) 5. What team in the nation has better depth at every position than LSU?
Josh - Give me a break. Hawaii has also done it each and every week so I guess Kansas is on the same level as Hawaii, for the same reason. Cheer them if you want, and they have done well, but no way have they established themselves as anything but a Top 25 team now, not Top Ten.
The SEC won't schedule any good teams on the road?
What a crock of B.S.
It's the other teams that don't want to play home and home against the SEC.
Georgia has pleaded with Michigan for YEARS to play home and home. But they refuse. The last time we talked, arrogant Michigan wanted two home games. That's not how it's played.
Look at Georgia's nonconf sched from last year on. We played or will play Colorado, Okie State, Arizona State, Oregon, etc. Now, don't blame us if when we play Oregon they're a 7 win team. When we scheduled Colorado, they had just won the Big XII North and won 9 games.
Don't come on here spreading the same old tired B.S. lies about the SEC not scheduling anyone. We try. LSU played VaTech this year. Auburn played USC. Notice USC didn't schedule Florida, Georgia, or LSU. They scheduled Arkansas and Auburn. Also, Georgia also plays Georgia Tech every year. Okay, bad example. The Bugs suck. Florida plays FSU and sometimes Miami. SoCarolina plays Clemson. We play our ACC neighbors.
The SEC plays teams. In the Big-ZERO, they play direction teams from Michigan every year. How is that different than SEC teams playing directional school from Louisianna?
I have to agree with Douglass. That was completely classless plugging the Big Ten Network on this discussion of football rankings. As if cable rates are not already high enough with annual (and sometimes biannual) 6% rate hikes, here comes the Big Ten Network to extort a few more bucks from us poor sportsfan saps.
You use the Texas A&M common opponent point for Kansas and Oklahoma, what if I choose Colorado?
You take him out of context and you know it. Isaac was making a point and it was a good one.
@ the big ten network
I watched OSU-Wisconsin over the weekend. Repeatedly they would cut back from commercials and I would find I missed a play or two. They cut to commercial at the end of the 3rd quarter, came back to the game at the 14:00 minute mark, missed a touchdown. Announcers were amazingly decent, much better than Musberger, but the director/producer needs a talking to.
quote "whoever wants some come get it" or there about, don't care enough to exact it, but that was the jist. What is the SEC's ooc schedule against the major six conferences? 5-5. Such godly numbers...
OSU fan and big 10 supporter as well. There is a reason you picked the stat you did, 2-1 vs the sec. They didn't beat anyone else. 2-5 overall or some crap like that. Says more about the sec now that I think about it...
Lets not forget that a couple weeks ago stew said that if OSU wins out, he jumps them to #1. Regardless of what LSU does. Gave LSU a b+ for the season and OSU an incomplete I believe was his logic. Maybe he has the balls to do the same for Kansas. Because if they win out, they deserve the nc game.
SEC people mock who OSU and Kansas has played, particularly ooc. Who has Florida, Kentucky, South Carolina, Alabama, Auburn, and Georgia beaten out of conference? Believe the best would be Louisville, oh boy.
The conference lives off of hype. They say they are the best, so when they defeat each other it appears to be great teams pounding away. All the while they play no one out of conference so we can actually gauge them against the rest of the country. Like I said earlier 5-5 agaisnt the major 6 confereces this year.
And I am sure those astute readers out there noticed I said I am Buckeye fan and a big ten supporter. So before you counter with the obvious, let me do it for you. The big 10 is horribly down this year. And Oregon and probably LSU would beat OSU. So make a real point about your conference instead of knocking mine.
Expert40........... I have nothing against the SEC. Two of my three favorites teams are Georgia and Tennessee. My bias right now is not against the SEC s awhole, it is against the press lovefest with LSU.
I attended the Georgia/Oklahoma State game earier this year in the Georgia season ticket section. 92000 screaming Georgia fans were extremely impressive. I have also seen games in Knoxville, Tuscaloosa, Baton Rouge, and Columbia. All impressive venues.
I just think that Stewart voting LSU #1 is idiotic and terrible at this point in the season. Votes should be on performance, not n potential.
KU and OSU are undefeated and Oregon has played a much tougher schedule. Say what you want, but 39-7 in the Big House is impressive.
Losing to Kentucky is no better thn losing to Cal or Colorodo.
Mizzou has lost only to Oklahoma on the road....where is their respect?
everrettm1, no member of the Bulldog Nation would ever claim Tennessee as one of their three favorite team. There's only one favorite team. And the Bulldog Nation abhors that ugliest of colors, orange. To be fair, the inbred hillbilly rednecks of Rocky Flop would also never claim to root for Georgia.
Dude, you need to get up on Bill Simmon's rules for being a sports fan. One of his cardinal rules is against sports bigamy. There are no favorite "teams." Just favorite team.
And once again, LSU IS that good. They're playing great SEC opponents. The SEC is overwhelmingly tough this year, from 1 to 11 (12 is Ole Miss and we pretend they don't exist this year). Florida whips Tennessee. Tennessee whips us. We whip Florida. We and LSU play Bammy close. Auburn plays everyone close. Kentucky can be run on, but they can score with everyone. SoCarolina is succumbing to injuries and Spurrier's refusal to settle on a QB.
LSU should be No. 1 based upon their schedule and who they've beaten. Who has Ohio State or Oklahoma beaten this year? Nobody.
And once again, EVERYONE schedules Div-IAA schools and directional schools. In the SEC, AwfulCC, and Big East we / they schedule a directional Carolina or Louisiana school. In the Big-ZERO, they schedule directional schools from Michigan. In the Big-II, they schedule directional schools from Texas. In the Pac-2, they schedule directional schools from New Mexico or Nevada or Idaho, Wyoming, etc.
Stop spreading B.S. that it's just the SEC. The SEC is strong based on conference play being far superior to anyone elses. Florida more than proved that last year.
If Kansas and Missouri go against each other with only one loss between them and then meet an Oklahoma team with only one loss, the winner should jump in the polls to the #2 spot. #1 if it is Kansas that wins out.
Missouri and KU seem to be picking up steam and playing comparably. I'd give MU the edge with the wins over better competition and beating the same opponents more convincingly.
I'd say it'll be a toss-up between OU and whoever they face in the championship game. MU beat themselves more than OU did in Norman and OU hasn't done nearly as well as MU and KU have against similar competition. Still, OU is OU and will play tough when it counts.
So when your conference beats each other up, and loses lots of games in conference it is parody and depth? What about all the other conferences? ACC beats each other up. Should we excuse the BC score to parody? I think LSU is the most talented team in the country, on paper. But they haven't been playing that way all season.
So you excuse Georgia because when they scheduled them they were good. Washington was good when OSU scheduled them. Doesn't seem to matter this year though does it? Have Georgia call OSU, they seem willing to home and home anyone, see Texas the past two years, USC the next two years, Miami the years after that, va tech the following. Michigan is a bunch of pansies though, on that we agree. I don't know their schedule, but is LSU going to Blacksburg next year?
Also, Michigan played Oregon this year, OSU Washington (and as you say, not their fault they suck now), Northwestern played Duke, Minnesota played NDSU, umm, Iowa played Iowa State. Dangit, rest of the Big 10 needs to at least try, hard to make them look good. Didn't Florida play a directional Michigan school this year? Or was that last year?
Darren McFadden isn't the Heisman. He might be the #1 overall pick, but not the Heisman. One game a season does not make.
LSU stinks. The entire SEC stinks. The fact that they all beat up each other simply demonstrates the inbred nature of these rednecks.
As for that joker asking "anyone who wants some" to try the SEC- the University of California called. They're also-rans in the PAC 10, but they're still hungry. Tennessee was merely a snack for them; you may need to send 4-5 weak-assed SEC teams out West to make a full meal.
Sorry- you guys simply suck at football. LSU at anything above 10 is a joke. Sorta like the Confederate Army.
Well well well I see it is raining morons again. Everybody that believes Ohios St, Kansas, and Hawaii have played anything like a serious schedule please raise your hand. Thought so. Now sit down and take out your notepads cause I want you to write this down and don't worry I will write it real slow for you Big Ten/ Big 12/ Pac 10 fans.
2-0-0-6 B-o-w-l G-a-m-e-s: S-E-C 9 t-e-a-m-s (which the top tier teams all won their games) and routed OSU's butt for the NC. 6-3 record in the OUT OF CONFERENCE BOWL GAMES
7 teams currently ranked in the top 25 in all the polls including BCS.
Now tell me again who plays weak schedules? Guess who this one belongs to? Akron, Kent St, Youngstown St, Northwestern, Purdue (who hasn't beaten a major school with a winning record), Minnesota, and Wisconsin (who also beat no major schools with winning records.
They played Penn St who was ranked 25th when they played them. So let's see you all think Ohio State should be number one because they have played one game against a team that might be better than Vanderbilt? Get real please.
You folks bring ya'll bad selves back to the bowl games again this year and we will show you how the SEC plays football AGAIN.
Don't even get me started about Kansas and Oregon. Anybody can be 8-0 or close when they don't play in the SEC.
buckor you must be a ohio st fan that is the only thing that makes scense after u maybe beat michigan you know the team that lost to appl st come on down to new orleans and maybe you will get another sec team LSU
Yeah Michigan sucks, whats your point? Regardless, they are ranked 12th now I think. Sad but true. Heck according to the AP, they are better than Florida. Just shows you how screwed up the system is. And don't forget the loss to Duke and North Dakota State. Duke is as good as 1-AA, and NDSU is. Big 10 is down this year.
How this makes OSU worse I don't understand.
If everything holds serve, it should be OSU vs Kansas national championship game. Best two teams in the country? No. But the best teams rarely are in the nc game. System we have is terrible.
Twist my arm I would probably say that Kansas should be in it before OSU. Only reason OSU is 1 and not Kansas is simple. They are Kansas. People wouldn't be that tentative to rush up a USC, LSU, OSU, or Fla. Tradition shouldn't keep a team out.
buckyor - The people whose business it is to judge talent have mistakenly ranked six or seven SEC teams in the Top 25 all year. You should write them and share your wisdom instead of keeping it to yourself. I must admit I have rarely seen as convincing an argument as you presented.
That was a very well thought out, coherent point. Inbreeding...rednecks...confederatearmy....You are right, LSU should be #12. Thanks for clearing things up for us. I am confused on one thing though. How should the initial acceptance by some colonists of the Stamp Act affect Boston College's ranking?
OK let the numbers talk, missouri, who have thay beat out of conf, the worst SEC team who hasn't won a conf game (oh by the way only by 13) western michigan, illinois st: next, Oregon, Houston, michigan(who lost to app state) where are they from, Fresno St: next Arizona San Jose St (ha ha), Next: Kansas, Central Michigan,Southeastern Louisiana, Toledo,
The reason Kansas is not and will not be number is the schedule they play.
They have 0 wins over a ranked opponent and only 3 of their impressive 9 wins were against teams with winning recordsCentral Mich High School 5-4, Kansas State 5-4 and Texas AM 6-4. The last two are probably about Vanderbilt or Miss St quality teams.
With a schedule like that Kansas is lucky to be in the top ten period.
this post is so well educated if the top 5 teams win out should not oklahoma and kansas play a conf. champ. game should that be the championship game? i think not if every team wins out it should be oregon vs. lsu
Ohio St. should be #1. Teams other than Kansas (Oregon, LSU) have played tougher schedules to date and have earned their ranking. If Kansas wins out, they will be up there. But until they do, I don't have a problem with their ranking. BC got the benefit of the doubt, but I'm not sure why. Did anyone really think they were #2 or that they would go undefeated? I feel the same way about Kansas.
By the way, McFadden is a top Heisman candidate and he has had more than one good game (1300+ rushing yds, 12 TD's, 2 passing TD's). The guy is unbelievable. He is stuck on a mediocre team. He is the best I've seen in college since Barry Sanders. He's big and fast.
No doubt there are good teams that deserve a national title shot, but for you to say that LSU should be ranked lower is crazy, who else deserves to play for the title more than LSU, notice I said More, several teams deserves a shot just not more than LSU
What is most amazing about all of this is that someone is actually paying you to write on their website.
“But I could see no remaining reason why I should continue to rank Kansas lower than teams like Oklahoma or West Virginia which have no more distinguished resumes than the Jayhawks -- not to mention they, unlike Oklahoma, haven't lost a game.”
OU clearly deserves to be ranked ahead of Kansas - despite a loss to Colorado. They've beaten Texas and Missouri - two top 15 teams. They've also destroyed a "traditional power" in Miami. They beat Texas A&M by 28 - a team KU struggled with.
Missouri has beat Illinois, a Nebraska team that still had something to play for by 35, a Colorado team by 45 that KU struggled to beat, and beat Texas Tech (ranked at the time) by 31. They were beating OU in the 4th quarter and failed to finish them (miscommunication on a play call and a dropped pick cost them that game).
To say KU deserves to be ranked ahead of either of them because they've beat Central Michigan, Southeast Louisiana, Toledo, Florida International, and 5 Big 12 teams with a combined 10/20 conference record - it is a JOKE!! How many other teams would be undefeated playing that schedule – 15, 20?
I am a huge LSU fan but i must admit that I am a bit skeptical about their chances of making it to the NC game. I think they are the most talented team in the country but they have shot themselves in the foot numerous times in each of the past 5 games and somehow managed to go 4-1 in those games. They are the most penalized team in the SEC. They had 8 penalties in the 2nd QUARTER against BAMA. They should have beaten them by three TDs. Matt Flynn has been very inconsistent. Luckily they play Louisiana Tech and Ole Miss the next two weeks. But Arkansas and the East winner could beat them if they don't straighten out some things. They haven't played a complete game and shown who they really are since the VA Tech game.
I will give Oregon some respect. They deserve to be high in the rankings. There only loss was to Cal (who also beat a middle of the pack SEC team this year) and they whooped other Pac 10 powerhouses Standford (who whooped USC), USC, Washington, Washington St. They also beat Mich (who was whooped by powerhouse Appalachian St), Houston, and Fresno St.
Their claim to fame is certainly beating Arizona St. who also had wins over most of the opponents above as well as San Diego and San Jose states, and Oregon St.
Another tough schedule.
Sure makes LSU look pretty good to me when they play Alabama, South Carolina, Kentucky, Florida, Georgia, Va Tech, and Auburn and lose only 1 to all of those teams who all have winning records are bowl eligible! What a conference!
First off, your name strikes me as one not to be biased. Secondly, 2006=worthless this year. You show me 2006 records, I show you this year. 5-5 against the major conferences.
LSU is good, whoever said no higher than 10 was a moron. They are the 2nd best team this year.
Why do people forget that Michigan is almost top 10 now? And probably will be when OSU comes to town.
Shouldn't knock other teams ooc schedule when most of the sec doesn't play much harder of one. LSU is the exception, not the rule, this year with that. Tired of people bringing them up really. No team schedules more than 1 hard ooc game, or at least more than 1 they think will be hard. It just isn't done.
Always fun when idiots play the "you people are morons" stereotype card.
Heres a joke for you. How do you get an Ohio State grad off your porch? You pay for the pizza.
Not making excuses for Michigan losing its first two games this season, but to point ot the Michigan-Michigna State game as evidence that Michigan is weak shows that as a Connecticut fan you are new to college football. If Alabama was 0-8 and playing Auburn I guarantee you they would still give Auburn the game of their lives and maybe even pull off the win. Two teams that are in-state rivals in the same conference tend toplay each other tooth and nail regardless of records, injuries, poor coaching.
Any Alabama fans reading this, I was just using you guys as an example because that is probably the biggest in-state rivalry in the country besides USC-UCLA and I wasn't trying to say you suck or anything like that.
And for the record I think a football team can improve by leaps and bounds over the course of a season. Florida was ten times in January of 07 than in August of 06. And I bet Urban Meyer would agree with me.
I think it actually hurts the perception of the Big 10 that Michigan is moving up in the rankings. To many college football fans, it appears that they are waltzing through the Big 10 after having it handed to them by App St and Oregon. Is it because they are getting better or the competition is below average? If they played Oregon again, would the result be better for Michigan?
We live in an exciting time. Shortly we will see two of the most highly ranked schools with the most lowly ranked schedules slug it out for a BCS bid. Am I the only one having trouble sleeping at night in anticipation of the Boise St/Hawaii clash? If this game doesn't set some sort of record I will be amazed.
Bowl eligibility means nothing. Indiana is now bowl eligible. Shows how much that is worth.
Sec rules, you seem to discredit USC for losing to Stanford. Shouldn't Auburn be shunned for losing to Miss St, same for Kentucky. And South Carolina for a loss to Vandy. Those teams doing the upsetting might have winning records but if you break down who they beat as critically as you broke down ASU and Oregon, you might find them lacking.
You say waltzing through the big 10, others say greatly improved and deserving. If they played Oregon again, they would still lose. Just they wouldn't get run out of their own stadium. And Michigan has had issues with spread style offenses/mobile qbs for years. Carr is the worst coach at the helm of a traditional power in the country.
Mandel actually used that Michigan thing in his article last week. Michigan just much better or big 10 just that bad. Depends on how you want to skew it. Its a bit of both really. Wont know until Jan 1st though sadly.
A playoff would be so nice. But then we wouldn't have anything to argue over, though I bet we would find things.
Further proof flaunting bowl eligible teams means nothing to how good your conference is, big 10 could have 7, possibly 8 this year. 8 bowl teams from a conference that everyone bashes as crappy, rightfully so I might add. Too many bowl games. Should be an honor.
Joe- I totally agree with what you say regarding rivalry games. I just don't think that people out there understand how much these rivalries mean and how inter-regional bowl games pale in comparison. Michigan, after losing everything against hated rival Ohio State last year, probably saw their trip to the Rose Bowl as a shoddy consolation/vacation where a football game just happened to break out. No excuses. Just the way it is. I'm absolutely positive they wanted to win the game, of course they did, but motivation does not come easy when you've already lost what you really wanted. It probably didn't come any easier for a USC team in the same boat, but hey, at least it was practically a home game for them.
I also think it's important to note that Michigan State is a good, hard-nosed football team that hasn't tanked against anyone. They're the kind of team that I hope, if they qualify, gets a chance against an SEC team in a bowl game. Some folks are going to be very surprised at what comes from the middle to lower-middle end of the Big Ten.
I don't give a Stanford team as much weight as I do Vanderbilt or Mississippi St because Stanford is 3-6. The two SEC teams are both over .500 and probably on their way to bowl games. Big difference in those stats from where I sit.
Let me remind everyone who thinks Ohio State is weak: against their weaker opponents this year (Youngstown, Kent State, ect.), half the game was played by third string players. SEC fans, do what your supposed to do every week- take care of the business at hand. Don't disrespect a school because they take care of their business and you can't take care of yours. Schedules are set years in advance- I seem to remember Ohio State scheduling a great Texas team the past 2 years. Washington didn't pan out like we thought it would (sorry they stink). But from the looks of it, is scheduling USC the next 2 years going to pan out- who knows, but you would have thought Ohio State was insane for doing that earlier this year. The only thing you can fault a team for is not taking care of business. SEC- TAKE CARE OF YOUR BUSINESS and then come talk to us.
Nicole: It doesn't matter if KU is ranked higher than OU. As a Sooner fan, I hope both OU and KU run the table so they can meet in the Big XII championship game. You also can't compare teams by how they've played the same opponent. It just doesn't work. OU lost to Colorado, OU beat Mizzou, Mizzou drilled Colorado. Make any sense? I've said this for years, but the OU D has been suspect, mainly the secondary, since Mike Stoops left. Their secondary is need of some serious help. Kansas deserves to be ranked higher than OU right now. The only ranking I care about is the final one of the season. If OU takes care of business, everything will work out.
Marc is right. While other elite teams have been challenged every other week Ohio St starters have been sitting on the bench not wishing to run up the score on weak opponents. Sort of reminds me of last year.
It's a shame that most SEC fans aren't really fans of a team. They just rave about their conference.
So a bunch of average teams make the best conference in the country?
Let's take a look at the BCS Top 10 by conference:
Big 12: 3 SEC: 2 Pac 10: 2 Big East: 1 Big 10(11): 1
If LSU's defense was so good, they wouldn't have given up 24 to the Gators, 43 to UK, 24 to Auburn and 34 to Bama.
SEC plays a weak nonconference schedule overall. Arkansas has the balls to play a good team now and then. Georgia played Okie State this year. UT got obliterated by Cal.
Teams like Florida, LSU, Bama, and Auburn never play big non-conference games at home. LSU has played Middle Tennessee State, Tulane, and will play Louisiana Tech.
If the SEC was so great, Mississippi State wouldn't have gotten BLOWN OUT by West Virginia, a Big East team. Auburn wouldn't have lost to South Florida who now is a bust.
These are the major non-conference opponents for Big East teams this year:
Syracuse - Washington, Iowa, Illinois, WVA - Miss. State & Maryland (beat a then-hot Rutgers team) South Florida - Auburn Louisville - Kentucky & Utah Cincinnati - Oregon State Pitt - Virginia & Michigan State
SEC fans can ignorantly gloat when 75% of their conference plays quality non-conference schedules. The "we beat each other up" excuse is garbage too. A bunch of 6-3, 6-4, 5-4 teams doesn't scream excellence to me. It screams mediocrity.
Why can't it be that we're all thankful for being able to watch solid and interesting football every Saturday (or Thursday/Friday/Sunday) and leave it at that? Sure, it's awful for a couple of hours after a tough loss, but I'd much rather see a well-played, close game, than a blow out that lets me thump my chest and say, "Hey, look at what the kids that I root for did on the field to the kids that you root for!"
I mean, isn't that what this should be all about (at least, if we're not all pathetic wannabes who sit on our hind-ends yelling at the TV)?
You know, I thank GOD that BC finally lost, so that maybe there could actually be a NC worth watching. I'll be the first to say that the SEC is probably the toughest conference in football. But just because you may have the toughest schedule you are not anointed as having the best team. I do remember you losing at home to a slightly above average Kentucky team AT HOME.
"If and when we ever see the complete Tigers, there’s little doubt in my mind we’ll be seeing the nation’s scariest team (hence why I've kept them atop my ballot). Keep shooting themselves in the foot, however, and their luck will almost certainly run out."
Isn't the AP ballot supposed to be filled out based on performance?
I;ve read a lot of people criticizing LSU's non-conference schedule. I don't deny that it is weak (minus Va. Tech). However, look at who else we're playing non-conference. For the most part they will be Louisiana schools. Louisiana is a poor state, and most of it's money goes to LSU. We play La. Tech and Tulane because it spreads the wealth, and also because these are in-state games. There just aren't other big programs in the state, so these have traditionally been "rivalry" games for the school, Tulane espescially. We aren't fortunate enough to have a UT/A&M, Auburn/Alabama, OSU/OU, UCLA/USC/Cal game, so we play our old rivals.
See, you rank those teams higher for what reason? I think they are a step up from Stanford, but far from a big one. Check out a bulk of the wins by Miss St and Vandy. Low quality of opponents in victory, usually. All three have that fluke win. Eh, useless/pointless argument.
If all holds serve, it should an OSU vs Kansas nc game. If the regular season is the playoffs, which is the bs story we are fed, that makes winning the sole purpose. Winning, more so not losing, becomes the key criteria for picking the teams. That is what OSU and Kansas have done. This doesn't mean you should schedule crap. The big 10 isn't normally as bad as it is this year, and the rotation of the big 12 isn't always as favorable. And as people in the SEC claim and I agree with, it is good to be tested. Most coaches agree with that. So teams probably wouldn't schedule all gimme games.
Its a crap system though. Playoffs would solve a great deal of it. But maybe, if health care improves, I might live long enough to see one.
Having teams ranked, while a good indicator, doesn't mean anything. No one shows respect to Michigan, but they are 12. Unless application of this rule isn't universal ie if they lose to a 1-AA team. Most people who rank are idiots who get most of their info on teams from Lee and Kirk.
Chris- Big Ten fan as well. Your answer is simple. The big 10 sucks this year.
Stephanie, same reason you always see Ohio State playing Kent, Bowling Green and such. Keeps the money in state. But they try to schedule one quality game to off set that. OSU picked the wrong team this year. Though Locker, probably spelled wrong, did look impressive. Interested to see how much he improves.
I am rolling on the floor laughing my a_s off at that post. The SEC teams are soooo good w ehave to schedule a soft team every now and then so we can catch our breath. What can we say about the Big 12 and 10, Pac 10, ACC and Big Least?
I don't know what conference(s) you think has a less creampuff schedule than the SEC, but you should really take a good look at them. Some of the conferences have in conference games with more creampuffs than the SEC do! For proof see my ealrier posts about OS, Oregon and Kansas schedules! Only two winning teams on Kansas schedule!
It sounds like SEC_RULES is a stat machine. He probably keeps tabs on all the W-L percentages, strength of schedule and every other stat. He has to search far and wide for some reason to rank LSU above OSU. But he fails to realize the only imporatent stat is having a 0 in the loss column.
As we all sit here and pointless argue over things that can't even be decided correctly for weeks when the season is over, I have a question.
If you were put in charge of college football and could do whatever you wanted to the post season to make it, in your eyes, legitimate, what would you do? I don't know many people who enjoy how 1-AA decides its champion.
Personally, would make the big 10 finally add that 12th team, probably Cincinatti, or WVU and the big east can add Notre Dame to its football conference, as it is in the conference for most other sports. The pac-10 adds two teams. Probably Boise State, Utah, Fresno State, or Hawaii. This way all conferences have 12 teams and a conference championship game. The six teams who win the conference, plus 2 at large teams all enter a tourny, seeded by the overall bcs ranking of its conference and the two at large teams going at 7 and 8. Then they play it out. We would still argue over the two at large teams. Eh, never going to happen, but tis my dream.
Get down to the fact that the SEC is no better than the PAC 10 or the Big 12. Oklahoma has lost to Colorodo and beaten 2 top 15 teams already and will have to beat one more and win their in state rivalry game to get to the NC game. LSU has beaten a whole lot of mediocre SEC teams, and lost to one of them. They are either going to play GA or Tenn for the SEC title, and neither of those teams are all that impressive.
Gimme a break....the SEC is not as dominant as you think they are.
I suppose some of you would consider Va Tech, Cal, Florida State, Oklahoma Tech, Houston, Georgia Tech, Kansas St, South Florida are all creampuff out of conference games?? Those are some of the teams the SEC played this year in addition to their conference games against mostly top 25 opponents.
Why do I bother to put the stats on here anyway?
A team like Kansas who plays Central michigan, SE Louisiana, Toledo, Florida International Univ (0-9), K State, Baylor, Colorado, Texas AM and Nebraska and wins them all is probably good enough to be the National Champion.
socnicklin - Perhaps with your arrangement we would still argue about 7 and 8. But the important thing is that the best team not get squeezed out. Your plan would likely keep that from happening. But the small schools and Notre Dame would want special rules, as they do now. Remember according to most of them BCS schools won't play anyone but Utah( which has a good non-conf schedule this year). Utah brought some glory on itself, but whoever at Utah decided to play their BCS team schedule was a champion before the UCLA was even played.
Yes, I would agree with that. Have seen that proposal before, and argued for it. Conference championships could be out of the way before the holidays. Have the major bowls do the playoffs with rotating "best seeds" in them. Add one week to the schedule. If there are still complaints, then minimize OOC play to make it happen. Pretty rational, and seems to answer most of the gripes from fans (of any team), College Presidents (since they allow such at 1-AA and in 1-A basketball), Bowl Committees (since they still make $) and sportswriters (since they could base their rankings on empirical evidence in W/L).
I would only add the idea to forgo preseason rankings if seeds are to depend on BCS like rankings which give human "experts" 2/3 of the weight over computer algorithms which take much more than tradition into account (SOS for example).
We'd still gripe about seedings . . but that would be a lot more fun than attempting to defend whole conferences or respond to bad historians!
Good Post there . . . won't happen but we can dream!
For Chris - Tenn may control its own destiny but the schedule greatly favors the Bulldogs. To set the record straight Fla plays away every other year against FSU. UCLA & BC know FSU can be tough. The SEC does play a terribly weak non-conf schedule, as do most other conferences and teams, except generally USC. That's the reason we have so little evidence to argue who is better. Has the SEC been overrated? Perhaps if their bowl results are less than stellar it might be so. But with so few bowl games and #2 from here playing #4 from there it still leaves much to be desired.
LSU will play the mighty Louisiana Tech this week followed by the rough and tumble Rebels of Old Miss. next week (combined 7-12). Stop telling everyone how great your schedule is when you play this crap at the end. I really do want LSU to make it to the NC. Payback's a bitch.
Chris - The people who are supposed to know something in all major polls place six or seven SEC teams in the Top 25. That has to be one supporting argument for the SEC. That most all those voters are biased is not reasonable. That leaves people to argue that they are incompetent. These are the same people who uniformly felt that Fla would be clobbered by OSU, 51 day lay off or no. Virtually no one outside the SEC was saying that the SEC was the best so Fla would prevail.
Payback? I'm sorry . . I lost you on that one. You want to "pay back" LSU for some historical transgression?
What, exactly, was it, may I ask?
As far as LSU's remaining games, LA Tech is mandated (for reasons indicated above by Stephanie and by law requiring in state play if memory serves), Ole Miss is better than their record, and then Arkansas who has a pretty decent running back. I'm hoping that the Tigers win at least one, to get into yet another game (the SEC Championship against someone you might think more worthy).
Sorry for the perception of Tiger schedules you have, but as Stew points out few teams have played as strong a schedule that LSU has.
Perhaps we should have moved LA Tech to the beginning of the year . . you know, like they do "up north."
Chris - The people who are supposed to know something in all major polls place six or seven SEC teams in the Top 25. That has to be one supporting argument for the SEC. That most all those voters are biased is not reasonable. That leaves people to argue that they are incompetent. These are the same people who uniformly felt that Fla would be clobbered by OSU, 51 day lay off or no. Virtually no one outside the SEC was saying that the SEC was the best so Fla would prevail."
Of course they are incompetent. This is the same system that ranked an undefeated Kentucky team behind a Louisville team that it beat. The voters are STUPID.
I guess you want to flaunt your 2006 bowl wins against the SEC last year uh Chris??
Well let's look at em in full light. First off lets really look at SEC and Big Ten performance in 2006 bowl games and then we will discuss who is overated.
Our #1 FL vs your #1 OSU - well we all know what happened there don't we? 41-14, some game OSU played.
Our 2 next best teams LSU and Auburn, (overall records) smoked Notre Dame and beat Nebraska in major bowls.
Your #2 Wisconsin beat our #4 overall record team Arkansas by 3 points and your 4th best Penn State beat our 5th best Tenn by 10 points. So your win margin in two games was 13 points and our NC game win margin was 27 points. I like it better cause it was for all the marbles!!
Lets look at the 2006 bowl games where we didn't play each other, but did play teams much better than Akron, Youngstown St, and Kent St.
SEC FL destroyed Big Ten OSU 41-14 in NC game SEC LSU destroyed ND 41-14 in Sugar PAC 10 USC thumped Big Ten Mich by 14 points in Rose Big Ten Wisconsin eeked out 3 point win over SEC Arkansas SEC Auburn took down Big Twelve North champ Nebraska in Cotton Big Ten Penn State beat SEC Tenn in Outback SEC Georgia beat ACC VA Tech in Chick Fil A Big 12 Texas beat Big Ten Iowa in Alamo ACC Maryland walloped Big Ten Purdue in Champ Sports Texas Tech beat Big Ten Minnesota in Insight SEC S Carolina beat Houston in Liberty SEC Kentucky beat ACC Clemson in Music City Big 12 OK St beat SEC Alabama in Independence
Handled the Notre Dame thing by putting them in the Big East. They are going there eventually. When their NBC deal runs out, I doubt NBC will be giddy to resign unless some major changes occur. Without its exclusive tv deal, they will have to move to a conference for survival reasons. Big East makes the most sense to me as that is where they are for every other sport.
As for the non major conference teams. Their are 2 at large bids. Schedule top teams, win. Its what they have to do now anyways. Hawaii didn't schedule anyone and are now crossing their fingers, not much would change.
Always found the excuse of "kids would miss too much school" to be a load of crock. Every other level does it, and they don't care about their education. Fans wouldn't be able to travel to all those games. Eh, I doubt they would have issues selling out the games. If they are that worried, make some of them home games for the higher ranked teams instead of neutral site. But this is all fantasy. And my fantasies never come true. Still waiting on that Swedish bikini team bus to break down.
More tired of debating who is the best when we really can't tell. All we can do is compare who they beat, while beating good opponents might make you good, playing bad opponents doesn't make you bad. That and most people on here have a blind devotion so debating them is pointless.
The point was thrown out there for sec_rules, and the supposed dominance of the SEC over the big ten. There is something interesting going on this year though. At this time last year, everyone was raving about how dominant the big 10 was, only to disappoint in the bowls. Dare I say something similar to the SEC this year?
For Chris - You simply can't look at wins and losses without context. Auburn was struggling when it played USF. Michigan was struggling when it played Oregon. I don't give Mich a victory now, but nor do I view that game as such a tremendous win for Oreg. At their best I think FSU would defeat USF, yet some were claiming that USF was the best in the state. LSU came out of the Fla game beaten to a pulp. Kentucky's victory is more understandable in that context and it should have surprised no one that Florida was not really challenged by them the following week. Context is all we have to sort through the mess. You also ignore the two fairly close SEC losses to Big Ten teams in the bowls whereas Fla/OSU was decidedly not close. Do those three games establish superiority for either side? I don't think so. But the voters seem to give the SEC the edge.
Boston College and Oregon must both be horrible if I use your logic Chris. Because the same FSU team that beat Alabama knocked off the number 2 team BC last night.
Oregon's only loss is to Cal so I guess they are bad to. Tennessee lost to Cal after starting a game at what amounted to 11pm eastern standard time. They are not going to win the SEC East. They are a middle of the conference team that has gotten a break by beating Georgia and having other teams knock each other off. Tenn won't get through its remaining SEC schedule undefeated.
"Our 2 next best teams LSU and Auburn, (overall records) smoked Notre Dame and beat Nebraska in major bowls."
LOL Your #2 and #3 teams beat two of the worst programs in college football (9-5 and Charlie Weis) and you brag about it? Congrats.
"Your #2 Wisconsin beat our #4 overall record team Arkansas by 3 points and your 4th best Penn State beat our 5th best Tenn by 10 points. So your win margin in two games was 13 points and our NC game win margin was 27 points. I like it better cause it was for all the marbles!!"
Wisconsin was the 3rd best Big Ten team, chief. If you can't figure out why, you're an idiot.
"SEC S Carolina beat Houston in Liberty"
A BCS game against a non-major conference. You put up a team (South Carolina) that came within seconds of beating the national champion against a team that lost to Louisiana-Lafayette. Congrats!
Moral of the story - SEC has 3 worthless wins and you completely misrepresented the rankings of our teams because you know nothing about the conference and just looked at the conference standings. Maybe you should understand the concept that not every team plays each other and Michigan was ranked #3.
Nebraska (BIG 12 NORTH WAS AWFUL), Notre Dame and Houston were gifts.
"Boston College and Oregon must both be horrible if I use your logic Chris. Because the same FSU team that beat Alabama knocked off the number 2 team BC last night.
Oregon's only loss is to Cal so I guess they are bad to. Tennessee lost to Cal after starting a game at what amounted to 11pm eastern standard time. They are not going to win the SEC East. They are a middle of the conference team that has gotten a break by beating Georgia and having other teams knock each other off. Tenn won't get through its remaining SEC schedule undefeated."
So naive. BC is not that good. And Oregon would have won that game if not for a fumble on the goal line. TENNESSEE WAS NEVER IN THE GAME
"They are a middle of the conference team that has gotten a break by beating Georgia and having other teams knock each other off. "
NEWSFLASH: We're 10 weeks in to the season. Where a team stands in the conference says VOLUMES about where they belong.
Actually i do applaud sec_rules for bringing up that stupid start time for the Tenn- Cal game. When are the powers that be going to realize that what is good for the fan is good for college football? Now we have the Big Ten Network- crock of crap if you ask me. These big wigs are are so short sided they must be politicians.
Of course it's sweet. If big teams only scheduled quality non-conference opponents, then the little guys would be broke. It's a mutually beneficial system. Hence my not calling out OSU for their non-conference schedule. Why is it that everyone on here reads a post defending a team and assumes that THAT is an attack on everyone else? I went out of my way not to mention any other teams because I wasn't trying to pick on anyone.
Not going to join in the "Which conference is best" argument, but I will address the scheduling issue. I live in the state of Georgia and in my lifetime, with exception to bowl games, UGA has never traveled out of the Southeast. That is an incredible advantage in my opinion. Now, to be fair, I will mention that UGA has an away game scheduled at Arizona State next year. If you do not believe me, feel free to look it up. I have won many a bet with the above fact. Before the accusations, the answer is "No", I am not a Yellow Jacket fan.
Eh, Washington is still a bcs conference school. That 5-5 mark by the SEC isn't all against ranked teams. Just bcs conference schools.
Most teams approach ooc the same way. 3 scrubs, 1 good team. Or at least 1 team they hope will be good when they play the games. As said, Ohio State scheduled Va Tech for 2012. Va Tech is a good ooc game right now, but '12 though? Who knows.
So what the start time was bad for the Cal-Tenn game. LSU will be playing the NC at home give or take. Going to take that as an excuse from the losing team?
How are Ohio State's games against Youngstown State, Kent State, and Akron remarkably different than LSU's games against Middle Tennessee, Tulane, and Lousiana Tech?
The primary difference is LSU's HOME game against Virginia Tech, and OSU's AWAY game against Washington. Granted, the Huskies weren't the big game it was thought to be when scheduled, but them's the breaks.
SO FAR, OSU's opponents have a combined win percentage of .509 and LSU's of .618, HOWEVER, OSU's remaining opponents have a combined win percentage of .778 and LSU's of .400.
At season's end, according to the NCAA, OSU will have played the 32nd toughest schedule, and LSU the 33rd.
So, where's all this presumed LSU schedule superiority?
It's a myth based on completely biased media and coaches polls. Somehow Florida, Alabama, Tennessee and Kentucky all deserved to be ranked with 6-3 records; but Illinois, Penn State, Purdue and Wisconsin don't deserve to be ranked despite their 7-3 records. How can any objective reader not see a bias in that?
"Eh, Washington is still a bcs conference school. That 5-5 mark by the SEC isn't all against ranked teams. Just bcs conference schools." My point was that some of the BCS games were against ranked opponets and not cellar dwellers.
"So what the start time was bad for the Cal-Tenn game. LSU will be playing the NC at home give or take. Going to take that as an excuse from the losing team?"
Certainly if they are from a time zone where they are usually getting ready for bed or are still asleep when the game is played.
Netizen said... "How are Ohio State's games against Youngstown State, Kent State, and Akron remarkably different than LSU's games against Middle Tennessee, Tulane, and Lousiana Tech?"
I don't know maybe it has something to do with LSU playing Florida, Alabama, Auburn, Kentucky, while OS has played more weak schools like Northwestern, Purdue (who hasn't beaten a major school with a winning record), Minnesota, and Wisconsin (who also hasn't beat any major schools with winning records.
OS played Penn St who was ranked 25th when they played them. That is there only challenge to date.
They will get into the tough part of their schedule and will have healthy players because their third string and the watergirls have been playing their weak opponents.
Good points, mostly. If the world stopped right at this moment, LSU has the greater SOS. If we "freeze frame" SOS for the remaining games (OSU has what . . two against Illinois and Michigan and LSU three and hopefully one more) then ok.
Unfortunately it does not work that way mathematically. If either team wins, and their opponents lose that game and then continues to win, the data you cite changes. Big time.
Post again on strength of schedule once the games are played . . ok?
Big difference in timing Chris - LSU's tough bone crunching games came at the beginning and middle of schedule. Ohio state at the end. Big differenece on records, moral, injuries, confidence, etc. Need I go on?
I agree with some of the recent posts - it's a little much to ASSUME that Ohio St is going to win at Michigan.
Also, the difference between the SEC's out of conference record and everyone else's is that there aren't any bad losses. The worst OOC team that an SEC team has lost to this year is Florida St (who just beat BC on the road).
The Big 11 has losses to App St, ND St, and Duke just to name a few.
"Big difference in timing Chris - LSU's tough bone crunching games came at the beginning and middle of schedule. Ohio state at the end. Big differenece on records, moral, injuries, confidence, etc. Need I go on?"
So your conference schedules games like inbreds? How is that anyone else's fault but your own? You're an idiot, as has been shown by everyone else.
"Also, the difference between the SEC's out of conference record and everyone else's is that there aren't any bad losses. The worst OOC team that an SEC team has lost to this year is Florida St (who just beat BC on the road)."
"The Big 11 has losses to App St, ND St, and Duke just to name a few."
"The Pac 10 has Utah, Notre Dame, and New Mexico."
"Also, the difference between the SEC's out of conference record and everyone else's is that there aren't any bad losses. The worst OOC team that an SEC team has lost to this year is Florida St (who just beat BC on the road)."
ARE YOU KIDDING ME? The second-best team in the SEC West lost to the last-place team in the FREAKING BIG EAST.
Joshua, I was merely pointing out that on in a neutral field, high pressure game, OU showed they could pull it off. The Sooners didn't show up to play in Boulder (against a team everybody remembered as going 2-10 the year before), but they won't make that same mistake if we make it to San Antonio for the Big XII title game. And as for KU being 9-0? The only ranked team they've played was #24 Kansas State, who hasn't been ranked since. The fact that they held on to win at Colorado really doesn't mean much. They haven't had to face us, Texas, Texas Tech, or Mizzou (yet). So they've avoided all of the ranked teams in the Big XII so far. How does that make their 9-0 more impressive than our 8-1 record, with two victories over ranked teams?
Words like "idiot" shouldn't be thrown around so frequesntly by anyone who supports the Big 11 as the best conference! It is going to come back and bite you when LSU does something worse than what Florida did to your precious Buckeyes.
You saw what happened to BC and Arizona St when they ran up against some competition. They folded like the house of cards their ranking was built on.
Chris - You're right, Auburn's loss to South Florida doesn't have the luster that it once had. That's still not as bad as losing to App State (UM is tied for the Big 10 lead) or Wyoming (UVA is leading the ACC's coastal division).
"Words like "idiot" shouldn't be thrown around so frequesntly by anyone who supports the Big 11 as the best conference! It is going to come back and bite you when LSU does something worse than what Florida did to your precious Buckeyes.
You saw what happened to BC and Arizona St when they ran up against some competition. They folded like the house of cards their ranking was built on."
Where did I say the Big 10 was best? Oh right, I never said it. Do you ever stop manipulating, or can you not argue straight up?
BC and Arizona State lost to teams in their own conference. If this is supposed to support the SEC, you're an IDIOT. What you wrote was 100% retarded.
Chris - You're right, Auburn's loss to South Florida doesn't have the luster that it once had. That's still not as bad as losing to App State (UM is tied for the Big 10 lead) or Wyoming (UVA is leading the ACC's coastal division)."
That data is only good thru Nov. 3rd. As always in college ball, things may change. Stats are nice and make for nice pretty spreadsheets, but they still don't solve the issues.
At everyone else:
WE NEED A PLAYOFF!
All this bantering about who is the better team or who has the best non-con wins doesn't mean diddley. Right now what we have is a system that chooses the BCS contenders via computer projections and other various rankings. That is how we get a national championship game. Most of these "stats" that are getting thrown around go into the computer projections and help determine the outcomes. So arguing stats is just arguing FOR the BCS! Come on, people, do you really want to do that? I don't think I am the only SEC fan that would love a playoff system. At least then we could bang this out on the turf and have a REAL championship. But then we have certain conferences that don't want their poor "student" athletes (football) playing "too many" games. What about baseball and basketball? They have playoffs, why can't we? And for what it's worth, I am (almost) always going to consider my conference and my team (LSU) the best out there. Just like all you other conference/team fans. Sometimes I will have the rankings, wins, and media hype to back that up. Sometimes I won't (not often, I hope). But that's half the damn fun!
Robert, Are you sure you're a college football fan? Your posting sounded way to logical and made way too much sense, especially compared to most of the garbage written on this page right now. Amen Brother.