courts be like "why is it a problem if people get money"
In my 30+ years as a UM fan, I've had my share of disappointments: The Miracle at Michigan, The loss at Oregon, the UT and USC Rose Bowls, A Thomas fumble against NW, etc, etc.. I always thought it was some higher power's hate for any team I support. Yesterday, before the half, I was sure that was the case.
I remember last year I would titter like a schoolgirl watching Notre Dame highlights and think to myself "How could any team be THAT bad?". Before the half, and the whole Notre Dame game, UM was THAT bad. I realized that this year was going to be tough, but this is a bit much. My support for the team never faltered, but doubt started to creep into my mind. When Matthews fumbled, I was pretty sure that I had done something wrong in my life that I was being punished for. The red hot fire poker that always seems to touch the side of my stomach when UM is losing started to hit the Kelvin scale. I was on the liveblog, and the comments were starting to turn from WTF to outrage(note: kudos to moderators for keeping out the very negative ones).
During halftime, the realist in me knew this game was over: 19 points down, -7 passing yards, and an offense that was a impotent as Hugh Hefner. The other half of me(read: drunk) was saying"it's only 19 points, and the D is playing pretty damn good. Cue Lloyd Christmas: "So YOU'RE SAYING THERE'S A CHANCE!!!"
I can't remember the last time I actually jumped as high or ran a complete lap around my house like I did when Thompson ran that pick back. My neighbor actually came by tio see it everything was OK, because she heard "someone screaming like a maniac" It's 20 some odd hours later, and I still have the "I just got laid. Twice." smile on my face.
I watched the Minny and MSU comeback games, and they were great, but those UM teams were expected to win. This one was different. This team was abominamal vs ND, and looked hapless in the first half. This win is more special to me, because these guys were dead, and didn't give up(hats off to the D and Shaffer).
All is quiet on the gastrointestinal front today.
There were no expectations. We came into this game expecting a loss, hoping to be competitive. Michigan came out flat. The fumbles were over and over and over again. Why the hell can't somebody hold onto the ball!!!!????? By halftime it was apparent that this was not to be. Threet was in a daze. WTF was he doing in the first half? He was rocking Tacopants all over the field.
Halftime was great. The MMB had this bad ass Ferris Bueller performance wherein the band leader, Cody, was playing the part of Ferris. He was sick and couldn't go to the game. After that they went into this elaborate rendition of the movie:
- They faked the "sausage king of Chicago" part of Ferris Bueller by having Cody say his name was Jim Tressel..complete with a fake Jim Tressel guy in the background (sweatervest and all).
- They had Lloyd hold and "Save Cody" sign and they showed an old man wearing a"Joe Pa" shirt.
- They had the whole segment wherein Cody (or Ferris) runs home to beat his parents, complete with jumps and the crazy music and Cody shaking hands with some chicks.
- Cody runs onto the field and leads the band in The Victors (complete with Cody touching his head to the turf minus the hat!!)
At this point I said jokingly to my wife "That was so great, I almost forgot how bad this game is. You know what??? I bet you Cody is the catalyst to a come back!!" Just after that I talked to my buddy in Florida. He's a big Michigan fan. I told him, "you wait, Rich Rod will change things up, Michigan is going to tear it up in the second half."
BOOM....4 wide, the rest of the way. Threet was a changed man. They started to move the chains. 1st down, 1st down, 1st down.................TD to Koger!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The energy in Michigan Stadium was building.
The D played as hard as I've ever seen. They would not give an inch. They just beat the ever-loving hell out of Wisky's QB, RB's and their OL. Holy shit that D was dominate!!! Wisky couldn't do shit but punt.
Then you have Steven "Pat White" Threet busting a run by the Defensive End for like 70 yards!!! The boy has wheels! I've never felt such electricity in Michigan Stadium!!!! The crowd was unreal!!! We were lucky, all the lame ass nancy bitch ass fans had left!!! F THEM!!!! We love Michigan Football and we were staying to the end!!!!!!!!! OH GOOD LORD THANK YOU FOR GETTING THOSE LAME ASS BITCHES OUT OF THERE!!!!! WHAT A CROWD!!! Once those A-holes that hate Michigan left, we were subject to one of the best crowds in the history of Michigan Stadium. In the 500th game!! On top of all the excitement Johnny F'n Thompson gets a pick six!!!! I was jumping all over the stands, I think I hurt my hip.
The crowd was great! The team was unstoppable. If you booed those kids today, shame on you. You suck balls, and you're a total ass. There was no quit today in those kids, despite you dickheads and your booing. I wasn't about to quit on my team, and I cheered them the entire game. If you booed Steven Threet, then f you. You're an ass, and don't bother coming to any other games because you suck and we don't want you. Michigan Football will survive without your negativity.
Alright, sorry. I'm just so pumped about that game.
At the end of the game, I'm thinking, holy crap, Michigan just beat a team coached by Lloyd Carr! Didn't they? I love Lloyd, he's a great guy, a great coach. But, I couldn't help but feel like if Lloyd had a 19 point lead, he would play the game EXACTLY like Wisconsin did, wouldn't he?? It felt GREAT to be on the other side of that coin. I kept thinking that Wisconsin was playing scared. They had no pulse out there, Michigan sucked the life out of them and it couldn't have been sweeter. I just couldn't help but think that Wisconsin's performance reminded me of the Michigan of old.
BUT.....The Michigan of new is still the Michigan of old. Somehow, someway, I knew they were going to be competitive. The tradition of this program, built off the yells and screams and leadership of guys like Yost and Crisler and Bo, somehow permeates everything that happens. And therein lies the beauty of Rodriguez. He has maintained this tradition, this undying believe in victory and honor and the Michigan way. It was shown today. It was proven today. Michigan Football is more than just one play, one fumble, one coach. It's everybody, from you, to me, to Coach Rodriguez, to Bo. It's real. It's tangible. It's inspiring, and above all it will not quit, it will not die, it will not bow down to you boo bird bitches. I love Michigan Football, and today's game is every reason why and more.
The offense started to move the ball when it passed to set up the run. Traditionally offenses rush to loosen the defense for the pass. In passing to set up the run, RR sort of abandoned his spread-option/zone read, for a more traditional offense that worked on this particular day. That worries me. He knows the personnel he has and seems a little stubborn. He transitioned to a more traditional scheme at halftime. Admittedly halftime is the time to make adjustments, but IMO it was obvious well before the half that an adjustment was needed and his failure to adjust is attributable to wanting to win his way. He faces a tough decision - if he continues to use a more pro-style offense we'll probably see more success and slow the transition to a fulltime spread-option/zone read team. If Threet succeeds fans will insist on keeping him as the starter even if RR wants to use a more mobile qb next year (Beaver or Forcier), who is more suited to RR's scheme. I think using a greater mix of pro-style formations gives us a better chance to win this year, but I'm not sure RR wants to do it that way.
Many who've conersed with me in the UM blogosphere know that I have a bit of a gambling problem that peaks during the college football and basketball seasons. Some of those folks have encouraged me to post picks and more pointspread information. I am not that comfy with posting picks as I dont want to be perceived as a tout and I am uneasy about people just following along. Its an adrenaline rush when its my money, but its stressful when I know it involves others. But, I've long held that gambling is a hobby of mine. So is writing. Combining them on this blog with pointspread thoughts on our Big 10 games once league play begins seems like a good compromise. I hope to have fun with this. However, let me offer a couple caveats:
1.) I am putting dough on these games, but in most cases it will be less than my usual bets as some of these games I wouldn't be interested in if not for this column. I'm nothing more than a $50 or $100 per play kind of guy, so make your guesses as to how much less I am going on these, unless stated otherwise.
2.) I am sticking to the Big 10. I dont think readers, nor the proprietor of this blog, would like me promoting my "50/50 chance lock of the year in the sun belt conference." The Big 10 gives this some relevancy for the blog
3.) Blindly following plays may be hazardouse to your wallet. Please dont forget that. With that out of the way, here we go:
Minnesota at Ohio State. Line OSU -18.5, O/U 47: I am a believer in the improved Gophers. They're running Brewster's spread offense with efficieny with just two turnovers on the year and TO ratio of +11. Last year, they were among the country's worst in that department. They went a dominant 4-0 in OOC play after going 1-3 against the same level of compeition last season. The key is are the better off to give the Bucks a game in Columbus today? I think they are, to an extent. Ohio State is still making themselves over in Tyrelle Pryor's image. They are a work in progress, but I think we can see some offensive explosion from them today as Pryor gets more comfortable and Beanie Wells returns. They're avergaged 19 ppg in their last three games and they could double that against the shaky Gopher D. But, I think Minnesota is going to some damage today. There's something not right about this OSU D so far this season. They seem vulnerable and have had a hard time getting opponents off the field this year. Minny comes with more weapons and a better QB than, say OU or Troy did. I think Weber can make plays downfield and get this team into the endzone more often than those clubs did. If the Gohpers can break even in the turnovers, I think they make this a fourth quarter game. However, OSU remains a big play D and I can see a Marcus Coleman acrobatic pick here and a Lauranitis touchdown there turning this into a rout. I feel strongly the winner of this game will score into the 30s and the loser has an excellent shot of sneaking into the 20s. The winner is OSU home games has averaged 35.5 ppg in the last 17 games at the Horseshoe.
Pick: Over 47
NW at Iowa. Line: Iowa -8, O/U 42.5. There was a time where I would not think twice about putting big money on the Hawkeyes at home. They had been on a 24-8-2 ATS streak at Kinnick Stadium, but are just 5-9 there since the start of the 2006 season. The bloom is off this money making rose. The Cats are actually 6-5 straight up versus Iowa in their last 11 matchups, which is indicative of the fact that Wildcat coaching staffs over the years have always keyed on Iowa as a rivalry game. They won 21-7 on this field two years ago. Northwestern is better than they were two years, while Iowa is worse. Bacher has struggled so far for the Cats and what was expected to be a pretty good offense has been clunky. I dont really expect it to start humming on the road against a gutty Iowa defense, but I think it will still outplay the Iowa offense thats in worse shape and has identitiy issues at QB. In addition to taking the points, I have the total as well. How in the world are six touchdowns going to be scored in this game?
Pick: Northwestern +8, Under 42.5
Michigan State at Indiana. MSU -8 O/U 51. I hate taking road chalk. Its a recipe for disaster. However, I dont see any way that IU stops the Ringer train this afternoon. Ball State dominated them on the ground last week, so you gotta think MSU can just gash the Hoosiers all day with the power run. IU was scared of Nate Davis at QB last week, so they overcompensated their gameplan. At least thats the meme coming out of Bloomington. I dont even think if they focus wholly on Ringer that that would work or slow Sparty's roll in this one. Despite some interesting individual talent on the D, IU is nothing more than an average MAC team on that side of the ball, especially in its front seven. MSU will push them around all day and a conservative gameplan from D'Antonio keeps this from getting out of hand. Still, I see MSU winning with a score similar to last week's effort. They win by double digits.
Pick: MSU -8
Purdue at ND. Line: ND-1, O/U 42.5. I know, its out of conference, but I will include those frm here on out because there's not that many of them. Besides, this is a nifty little NW Indiana rivalry. I've attended several of these games and one thing I've learned is that Purdue has a close resume to Michigan's as far as Murphy's Law striking them down when they square off with the Leprechauns. Not a huge fan of Purdue's program as they really haven't done anything in several years. Heading into the year, they were only 3-16 straight up against teams that eventually went to a bowl game. Two of those wins came last year against Central Michigan, with the second being the actual bowl game. This year, they've lost to likely bowl team Oregon, but beat likely bowl team CMU again. I just cant take this team to win against a team I believe is bowl caliber, even if it is just Armed Forces Bowl caliber. Throw in the fact this game is on the road in a place where they've only won once in their last 15 tries and I am reluctantly on the Irish this afternoon.
Pick: ND -1
Wisconsin at Michigan. Line: Wisco -6, O/U 42. One of my personal rules is to always take Michigan when they're an underdog. In the last 10 years, UM is 13-7 ATS as an underdog. Hey. 65 percent is something to look for when wagering. But, these numbers get better. Since this is not the WLA and the maestros of propaganda can not censor these numbers, I'll say, UM is 1-4 ATS as a dog against OSU in that stretch. So, they are 12-3 ATS against all other comers as a dog this decade. Those are numbers I will gamble on. As far as breaking this game down, ask this: Is Michigan better off heading into this game than they were last year going into Madison? Heart and Soul Hart was in street clothes, Henne could not move his arm, giving way on the third possession to Mallet, who strung together one of the five worst QB performances in the history of the school. The D and coaches yawned their way through the game like an NFL Week 17 game when you have the playoffs clinched and a postseason game the following week. I think mentally and physically this team is much better prepped to play the Badgers and I dont think Wisconsin is really any better than they were last year. Threet may make some mistakes and bad throws, but Everidge can match those numbers. As long as UM doesn't crap down its pant leg in the opening sequences (man, I wish I could gamble on how many times I will utter that phrase this season), I dont doubt they'll be there with a chance to win in the fourth quarter. Hey, I'll be at the game, betting on the home team, what can go wrong?!?!?
Pick: UM +6
Illinois at Penn State. Line: PSU -15, O/U 55. When this line came out over the summer, Penn State was an 8-point favorite. This line has ballooned because of the dominating efforts of PSU. I think that line is inflated purely on public perception alone and not on what really will transpire on the field. I still feel like the Illini have playmakers all over the place on defense and their front will be by far the most physical team PSU will have played. I think the young QB Clark can be coaxed into making mistakes and the power running game that has walked all over the likes of Temple and Coastal Carolina will find the slogging much tougher today. Juice led his team to a win in the Horseshoe last year, so I think he can make more than enough plays today to keep this one close. The Illini are 7-1 ATS as a dog in Big 10 play in Juice's starts. I'll ride that today.
Pick: Illinois +15
Thats my Big 10 card for the day. A couple of totals, two road dogs, a road favorite, a home dog and a home favorite. There's a little bit of everything in the grocery bag, lets hope it holds a winning record. The OSU over and UM pick will be regular plays on my regular card. Illinois might be as well, depending on how the day goes. The rest are just small, for fun plays. Flaming is allowed if these picks go down in flames, by the way.
Bumped from the diaries for extreme usefulness. -ed
I've watched the first three quarters of the Wisco Fresno game, and the first half of the Marshall game. Here are my thoughts.Wisconsin's Defense:
- They base out of a 4-3. As long as a tight end is in the game, they will stay in this front. Against Fresno, they brought a safety down and played cover 1 behind it. I think they were in cover 1. Its hard to read coverages watching TV footage. They did not blitz fresno very often, only on 2nd and long or 3rd and long. They would usually put #2 over the tight end if the tight end was in the slot. Against Marshall, they kept both safeties back and played out of a 2 shell. They appeared to be running a soft two, where the corners get depth with the #1 receiver until their flat is threatened. I think they were also running this when Fresno would go 5 wide.
- On third and long they will run a 3 man front and blitz. Only once during the 5 quarters I watched did they not blitz out of this front. They like to bring #11 on the outside. If they other linebackers blitz out of this front, they generally go through B gap. They blitzed Marshall more than Fresno. Marshall was more of a passing offense so this makes sense.
- #91 and #92 are their best players on defense. They are extremely quick off the ball and were very good at disrupting Fresno's zone running play. 91 is DT and just blew by people several times. He was also offsides two or three times, so I think we will get some easy 5 yard gains here and there. But Molk has got to be quick end get off the ball with power this week. This guy cannot spend the afternoon in Michigan's backfield or we will not be able to run the ball. #92 is the same way. They get up field in a hurry, and one way to negate this are screen passes. Both Marshall and Fresno got a couple big gains on well executed screens. I don’t know if Michigan has run it very much this year, but running the inside trap should put #91 on his back and hopefully result in some good runs.
- I think they will play us more like they played Fresno, so Carson Butler on #2 should be a huge mismatch. He is not that good in man to man coverage. Fresno’s tight end is not the athlete Carson Butler is, but consistently got open against that guy. If Butler is going to break out in a game this year, it has got to be against #2 in man to man coverage.
- Their corners seem to be ok in man coverage, but not great. Again, its hard to tell on TV film. I think we will see a lot of man coverage, because we have not consistently beat man coverage. If we see this, we need to make them pay for it. We have to throw the fade accurately and run better routes. They are physical corners, and Michigan’s receivers must be physical as well. I don’t think our receivers have been good enough in this area. They have been redirected on some of their vertical routes, and they have to be better. If we start hitting on the fades and comebacks, our other routes will open. The safeties are also ok players. #12 gets to the ball quickly. When they bring a safety down, I think it was #21 who they brought most of the time. They also like to blitz him in their three man front when he is playing man over #2.
- Bubble screens could be difficult to run this week. They mostly play with a man over every receiver, so by alignment we will be at a disadvantage for this play. However, if we are successful running the zone/counter/trap, they may have to bring the man over #2 or #3 to the inside, opening up the bubble screens. The three step passing game should be there this week too, especially if they are in man. The three step slant is one of the hardest throws to defend man to man, especially if the corners think the #1 receiver is a vertical threat.
- The linebackers are good players. They are not incredibly athletic, but they play disciplined and are good tacklers. However, if Michigan can take care of #91 and #92 and get to the second level, we can run on these guys. They are susceptible to misdirection. They bit on a reverse in the Fresno game, and usually bit pretty hard on the bootlegs.
- There isn’t as much to say here. This is an I-formation offense that is looking to drive you off the ball. They like to keep two tight ends in the game most of the time. With the athletic tight ends they have, they can run or throw out of these formations. Beckum especially is a threat lining up in the slot or outside. They are also decent blockers, but we have to get by these guys when they are blocking on run plays.
- Their favorite formation is a tight end other either side with twins to the wide side of the field. They can run the belly to either side or throw out of this formation. They also like to put both tight ends on the same side with a fullback in the backfield. They will pull the center and play side tackle out between the tight ends and run the fullback through the hole as a lead blocker. They run this a lot and have success with it. They also motion the wing tight end to the other side. They run to the motion and run the counter away from it. Sometimes, they pull the motioned tight end back to the play side and run a trap. Any pulling lineman will take you to the play side. When lineman work off double teams and get to the second level, they go after the outside linebackers, and leave the Mike for the lead blocking full back. When they pull, it looks like they are looking for the first man to show.
- Their passing game is based around their tight ends. They will run them on deep outs, down the seam, and down the sideline. They also like to run crossing routes with these guys. They look for these guys first. Their wideouts do not seem like much of a threat. #7 is a big tall guy but can get pushed around. #3 and #85 are smaller quicker guys, but did not get much separation against Fresno db’s. They will run some bubble screens out of twins and trips if the defense is way off the line of scrimmage. Everidge is a typical Wisconsin qb. His arm strength and accuracy or just ok, and he can make a few plays with his legs. We need to hit him early and often. I think this is possible. Marshall got some pressure on him early, and Fresno was able to get some as well. We need a big day from Jamison and Graham on passing downs, and I think we will blitz a lot on these downs as well.
- As a defense, we have to stop the run game. This is not going to be easy to do all day. However, I think we can do it. Our DT, have to stand up the double teams, and not allow the Oline to release to the lb’s. When our lb’s take on a lineman or a lead blocker, they cannot let them get into their bodies. They either have to take them head on, extend their arms, and shed the block, or take them on with their correct shoulder and make the play with their free shoulder. Even if this is just forcing the play back to the middle, it has to be done. Our lb’s have got to deliver hits this week. Putting their heads down and lunging will result in big gains for P.J. Hill. He will run through arm tackles, and if we try to hit him high, he will get 5 yards after contact. He is a big guy, but he runs pretty upright. We have to hit him low, wrap up, and drive him back. I think we have the athletes at lb to make these plays, but until now they have been lunging. Hopefully, they have been working on this for two weeks and execute better on Saturday.
- We have to hit the tight ends as they come off the line of scrimmage. We do not have a linebacker that matches up well with Beckum. Maybe Mouton can stay with him, but if he catches a ball, does Mouton bring him down immediately? The other TE, Graham, is not as physical as Beckum. We can knock this guy down right off the line of scrimmage and take him out of the game completely. We need to hit Beckum too on every single play. When these tight ends try to release off the line, we need to put them on their backs. You can hit a guy in college until the ball is in the air, and we have to beat these guys up. Warren and Trent should have no problem locking up their wideouts.
- I expect to see Michigan run some cover 4 in this game where the safeties are buzzing their feet at the snap and reading the play. The corners are man outside, and if the safeties read run they come up in run support. If they read pass, they have deep half. From what gsimmons has posted about the defense, this coverage is now in Michigan’s arsenal. Whatever coverages they run, I expect to see safeties coming down in run support.
- One last thing, they run a play action where they fake a zone stretch play and bootleg, dragging the tight end from the original play side. They hit it for big chunks of yards against Fresno. However, they ran the play action 3 or 4 times in the games I watched, but only handed off once. If you see the zone stretch, it is most likely a play action. Again, we have to hit both tight ends on this play and cannot let them release cleanly.
Well that’s what I have for this week. I definitely think we can move the ball against their D, but we have to execute the fade route better. We also have to be able to run the bread n’ butter zone read play with 3 or 4 wide receiver sets. Defensively, our lb’s have to improve significantly at taking on lead blocks and delivering a hit on tackles. We need to hit Everidge early and often, and we have to keep the TE’s from getting a clean release off the LOS. I really believe this is a winnable game. We definitely have the weapons on offense to hurt them in secondary. Our Oline needs to execute, and we absolutely cannot turn the ball over.
Its safe to say nobody saw last night's upset coming. Oregon State, despite being a program that gets much better as the year progresses, had not shown much this year. Not only were they blown out by Penn State, but they let Stanford march up and down the field on them en route to losing the season opener. I know I did not expect it. OSU has been a solid bowl team under Mike Riley, but I felt they were rebuilding and a good bet to finish well in the bottom half of the league standings. Still, I DVRed the game to watch the Trojans. I was unable to start watching until past 11 o'clock because of prior commitments, but I still figured I'd get to bed early with the Trojans tucking it away by half or something. It turned out to be an amazing game, proving once again just how great and unique college football is compared to the other sports we follow. Last night was a seismic event in the CFB world, and you just dont get those at random in the other sports. So, I am a little bleary-eyed at work this morning, but still pretty ramped up about the game to offer a few thoughts on the outcome.
- The loss for USC is too early in the season to totally eliminate the Trojans from BCS Title game contenion. However, make no mistake, this is a major blow and the human voters will make them pay for this one throughout the season. Conventional wisdom says the Big 12 and SEC are far and away the best leagues right now. I can't see USC (or the Bucks, for that matter) ever being ranked ahead of legit 1-loss teams from those leagues. However, when the Trojans were undefeated, they looked to have a hammer lock on one of the title game invites. We had a race for one spot, opposite USC. Thats no longer the case as we have a whole new ball game in the BCS chase. On the broadcast last night, Chris Fowler said the chase is "energized" in the wake of USC's loss. Thats a perfect word. Logically, we're headed for a Big 12 vs SEC game for all the marbles with each league strong enough to allow for a 1-loss team into the title game. USC (and Ohios State) really need teams from at least one of those leagues to all have 2 losses in order to get back into the mix. And, that's if the Trojans and Bucks win the rest of their games. Thats a big If.
- Next week's poll ought to be interesting. Who in the world will be #1? The Trojans were the near unanimous #1 this week. But, with no obvious next choice, expect those votes to be tallied all over the place. We might see every team in the top-10 get at least one first place vote. Alabama, unranked at the start of the year, could very well be #1 this week if they can go into Athens and beat the Bulldogs. Meanwhile, even a team ranked in the second 10, like Penn State, might find themselves hauling in a series of first place votes. This will be one of the crazier votes of the regular season in recent memory, and you know we're destimed for another bizarre outcome over the weekend to further muddy the waters. As far as USC, I expect them to fall hard and out of the top 10. How can any pollster, with a straight face, put USC ahead of any of the other teams currently in the top-10?
- Since the start of last season, this makes nine times an unranked team has beaten either the #1 or # 2 ranked in the country. The Beavers are the first team with a losing record to beat a top ranked since Michigan State pulled the trick against Michigan in 1990. That was the famous Desmond Howard Interference No Call game. Brutal. Now I need a drink.
- Already this season, we've seen four legit BCS Title Game contenders go down in flames: Clemson, West Virginia, Ohio State and USC. You could even throw in trendy darkhorse ECU after the Pirates were upset last week as another fallen contender. Thats a lot of heady carnage. And, we're not even in October yet.
- The early meme in the wake of this game has been 'oh my, just how good is Penn State?' Thats a viable thought considering how the Nittany Lions thouroughly dismantled the Beavers a couple of weeks ago. But, I want to play this forward and look at it the from a different angle. Consider that in six days these same Beavers travel to Salt Lake City to take on the Utah Utes. I had discared the Beavers chances in that game, but its obviously time to reconsider. OSU getting off the mat and becoming everyone's darling can only benefit Utah. Originally, who thought the Utes would get any points from the voters based on a possible win there? Now, it could end up being a bigger feather in their cap than winning at the Big House. I think there's a more than decent chance that if Utah and BYU run their repsective tables, that a spot in the BCS Title Game will be on the line when those rivals square off in late November. Suddenly, OSU gets a tangible SOS boost in the eyes of the voters because of next week's game. Its another Thursday Night ESPN special, but for the Utes to take advantage of it, they must take care of business. Suddenly, that business looks a whole heckuva lot tougher.
- How about the game for Jacqueez Rogers. Its not as much the 187 yards rushing or over 200 total yards, but he carried the rock 37 times! Who knew this little dude could be a workhorse like that. When the Beavers lost to Stanford in the opener, this kid was the only thing that impressed me about OSU. He does remind me of Mike Hart in the fact that he is always getting positive yards, although he seems faster and more of a threat in the passing game than Hart. Whats really worth mentioning is that this kid, from SW Texas, was "just" a 3-star recruit (per rivals) and ranked as the #26 all purpose back in the country--16 spots behind our own Texas freshman Sam McGuffie. Yes, thats right, an electron sized, three-star recruit dominated the top ranked team in the country. Perhaps we can stop hand wringing over the "stars" assigned to our recruits and stop going all Chicken Little everytime Michigan signs a 3-star. I'll take a roster chalk full of Jacqueez Rogers, thank you very much. Of course, he limped off the field last night. Hopefully, it isn't serious because the dude is going to be a very big weapon for the Beavers.
- Interesting note on the Vegas Line from last night's game. Obviously, USC did not cover the -23. However, the second half line was -14.5 for the Trojans. USC covered that, thanks to that shank extra point by the Beavers in the closing minutes of the game. Crazy stuff and I am sure there was a lot of hotting and hollering going on in sports books up and down the strip as that was unfolding.