no, YOU'RE off topic
It's on again, this time over at EDSBS.
1. What's THE critical game of the season on the national scene?
Chalk: Ohio State-Texas. If Ohio State wins, there will be a Big Ten team in the national championship game assuming that Michigan, Purdue, and Iowa follow through on their nonconference schedules--a significant assumption given that therein lie two games against Notre Dame and one against a pretty good Iowa State team, but not an outlandish one. The polls are ready to hype up the Big Ten, and if those for teams make it through the nonconference schedule without a loss, all four will be in the top ten or close to it. It would take a lot of round-robin losing for all four teams to fall out of the national championship picture.
And because I feel so bad for A) talking constantly about Ohio State in this answer and B) going chalk-city in answers one and two, a bonus pick: Iowa-Purdue. Every Midwesterner outside of West Lafayette will be pulling for the Hawkeyes, as an OSU-Michigan-free Boilermakers team capable of beating Iowa will be hopping, skipping, and jumping its way to the BCS and very possibly the Rose Bowl. Howls of protestation will erupt (again), but what are you going to do?
2.What's the most critical matchup for your team?
OHIO STATE AAAAAH! AAAAH!
Look, I don't want to answer Ohio State. It's boring and predictable. But I have absolutely no choice. Cheatypants Sweatervest is now 3-1 against Michigan. Up until last year the OSU losses were unfortunate but not worrying: the first was John Navarre and the Worst Game By A UM Quarterback Since That Time Demetrius Brown Threw Seven Interceptions. The second was a tight game in Columbus against the eventual national champions. You can look at both of those and sort of shrug and say "yeah, okay, that's mostly beyond your control." Not so last year's debacle, during which Michigan turned Troy Smith from a black version of Steve Bellisari into a black version of Michael Vick. That Ohio State team was horrific through the meat of the season but soundly beat a Michigan team that should have gutted the Buckeyes.
Houston, problem. John Cooper specialized in inexplicable losses like that and ushered in the 2-10-1 pax Michigana. If Cheatypants Sweatervest runs his record to 4-1 this year in Ann Arbor against what promises to be a Wolverine offense discussed in wine and song many moons from now, the shoe will be firmly ensconsed on the other foot. Michigan fans will start buying torches, assembling pitchforks, and getting boiled-by-oil riders on their life insurance policies. I don't want to see the other side of the John Cooper coin.
3. What's your wingnut upset prediction of year?
Georgia over Boise State. I keed, I keed.
Penn State over Ohio State: The college football equivalent of that horrific Indiana-Detroit Eastern Conference Finals last year, this series has degenerated into an uglyfest unparalleled nationwide. Every year someone wins without deserving it in any way whatsoever, usually off a freakish play by a tall fast Buckeye. This year Penn State will have a fighting chance because they have some guys--Derrick Williams, Dan Connor, Alan Zemitas, Justin King--who can make the big play that leads to the game's only touchdown.
Penn State will have a bear of a defense this year and the only issue they appear to have is a team that can successfully apply a power running attack. Ohio State will be singularly incapable of doing this. No one is going to turn off Ted Ginn but the Penn State secondary is going to be four seniors with proven ability--he won't go Oklahoma State on the Nittany Lions. Ohio State will struggle to score mightily.
How will Penn State score? Hell if I know. But it'll only take one huge play.
Michigan WR/OLB Quintin Patilla has committed after getting a camp offer. Patilla will come in as a linebacker. mgoblog generally likes anyone who gets offered at camp and a Rivals guru or two really liked Patilla as long as a year ago. Some concerns about his speed--which either is poor or does not translate to 40 times--seemed to be the only thing people worried about. Patilla's flexibility probably helped him get the offer. Michigan could accept a commitment from another linebacker past Graham, Patilla, and (presumably) Mixon and let everyone battle it out. Graham could end up at DE or Patilla at WR. As the #8 prospect in Michigan in what's regarded as a weak year in-state, he'll definitely be a three-star.
Also, Scout.com has released its initial Top 100 list with the ever-popular Myron Rolle at the top. Recruiting board will be updated within a day or two with the information. Initial impression is that there are a freaking ton of Ohio guys on the list, probably far too many. Current commitments Brandon Graham and Justin Boren are #12 and #29, respectively, and almost-commitment Cobrani Mixon is #79. Haven't had time to look at the list extensively yet but at first glance there is a lot of disagreement between Rivals and Scout, seemingly more so than usual.
I just need a name for it. Suggestions are being taken.
Click-equivalent-run, don't click-equivalent-walk over to Straight Bangin' for a dystopian vision of internet obsession that even mgoblog hasn't reached yet:
I woke up at least four times last night because I was having a nightmare in which Michigan lost its season-opening game against (the) Ohio State (joke of a) University.
Dude. Vijay at IBFC also has a schedule proposal that will never ever happen even though it should.
GBW has an article on incoming CB recruit Chris Richards. Richards has joined the Brandon Harrison "I was short but now I tower over you peons" campaign by growing from 5'11" to 6'1". Richards will redshirt. Scout also has more Myron Rolle. Same carefully neutral tone but if you'd like to overanalyze what he said I would say that the article is a negative one for Michigan. I am moving my tiny Myron Rolle figurine farther away. (Also, more mention of Meyer and his goddamn text messaging. OMG LOL U R A LOOSER!!!)
Other people are still talking about this whole Braveheart thing though I have personally sworn off it. CFR weighs in (negative) with a philosophical take that accuses mgoblog of "living what amounts to a fairly numb existence," which means that he definitely hasn't read any of my liveblogs. A brief clarification: when I ask "How would I know?" The question is more "how would I be able to tell if your hypothesis is correct, given that you have given essentially no reasoning to support it?" New blogpoll voter Braves & Birds (<--blogroll and link away, EDSBS) then does a demolition job on CFR's Boise-Georgia post. Never attack Georgia in winter. Or something.
Also, Blogpoll Roundtable #2 should be coming up soon, whenever EDSBS stops looking for naked pictures of Rosario Dawson.
Finally: A blog from the cradle of Joe Tiller! And a blogpoll voter, completing our collection of conferences. In other blogpoll voter news, Football Outsiders has provided a severe injection of credibility by deigning to participate. Excited am I.
shalÂ·low adj. shalÂ·lowÂ·er, shalÂ·lowÂ·est
- Measuring little from bottom to top or surface; lacking physical depth.
- Lacking depth of intellect, emotion, or knowledge: "Â“This is a shallow parody of America."Â” (Lloyd Rose).
- Marked by insufficient inhalation of air; weak: shallow respirations.
- In the part of a playing area that is closer to home plate: shallow left field.
- Done or achieved with little effort or difficulty; easy. See Synonyms at easy.
- Working, acting, or speaking with effortless ease and fluency.
- Arrived at without due care, effort, or examination; superficial: proposed a facile solution to a complex problem.
- Readily manifested, together with an aura of insincerity and lack of depth: a facile slogan devised by politicians.
- Archaic. Pleasingly mild, as in disposition or manner.
This is what we are talking about, is it not? The mindless pregame blather about wanting it more? How sports commentators are, more often than not, just saying something to say it?
If you want to read HP's response, it's here. But I'll save you the time. HP's response to my duel-inducing slap consists of: cheap shots at Lloyd Carr and Dr. Z, links to his posts which I declared to be characterized by the above nasty words with a reasoning-free declaration that they are not those things, and mischaracterization of my post via omission, and... Christ... a lot of words full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.
Yes, mainstream dumb drives me crazy. Yes, I'd like it if that was no longer the case. But HP is no Kwisatz Haderach. Look. I don't want his to get "fisky," as EDSBS has accurately accused me of being in the past. I don't want to pull something out of context and hold it up and beat it to shreds. So what I'm going to do is pull something that I believe sums up the whole thing. HP says:
...I did explain what the offenses had in common (comparing their balance and yardage and scoring output) and why they are so hard to defend and how it affected the teams (I noted they went 55-2 against the rest of college football last season)....
He references this post, which is all the explanation we get. Read it. If it's something you find convincing and thorough, well, I guess I've lost. To me it consists of "these six teams have good records and rack up a lot of yards and are balanced so they're real good but Oklahoma doesn't count because Oklahoma isn't sophisticated." This is nothing you wouldn't read from, say, Matt Hayes. Same with useless top ten lists of fastest players or best Heisman winners. Superficial, all of it, and when the Superficial One calls out everyone else for being superficial, well, them's sissy-boy slapfight words.
Respect from the MSM (and anybody, really) will come from actually doing good work with research behind it--and I don't mean checking the top ten offenses last year to see which of them had really good seasons. Others are capable of doing this and have done so. I think it's under a year before BGS starts getting a lot of mainstream attention, not because they're calling people out for accountability, but because they're covering Notre Dame better than anyone else. So. I suggest everyone put up or shut up.
I promise that I'm shutting up on this now. And then I will put up sweet things later that will make Trev Alberts collapse to the ground, repentant, crying, begging for penance.
(And why do I blog? For the hot blog groupies.)