spoiler alert: i linked this
It is happening, folks.
At 8PM on ESPN2, this season's ultimate MACtion will occur right here in the Detroit area - at Ford Field, as a matter of fact.
Bowling Green takes on Northern Illinois for all of the MAC marbles in just a few moments. Per TeamRankings, NIU is the favorite - 3 points, about a 60% projected chance.
If you had plans to watch football, this would perhaps be the football you meant to watch.
The man who has given us the new "MARCUS HALL EPIC DOUBLE BIRD OF THE WEEK" section of the game columns will, in fact, suffer some repercussions for his actions in the Michigan game:
Ohio State coach Urban Meyer announced on Friday that guard Marcus Hall will not start against Michigan State in the Big Ten championship game. Meyer declined to elaborate when he’d insert Hall in the game, only saying that he’s “very, very disappointed in his actions.”
"Will not start" punishements are the best. They let you do just enough so your critics can't say you did nothing, but the actual impact on the team is minimal.
...with that said, if memory serves we've done the same thing plenty of times, so glass houses and all that.
Auburn destroys Missouri.Ohio gets a lucky win in a close,dull,controversial game (MSU gets called for a shady pass interference penalty late in 4th Qrt.) BCS voters put Auburn ahead of Ohio.A bitter Ohio goes to Rose. Urban cries to the media about Auburn being chosen ahead of Ohio and is roundly critisized for being a hypocritical crybaby.Ohio gets beaten badly by Stanford/ASU.Sparty goes to Cap1or Outback Bowl and loses big.
I had problems with Bill Martin as well, but this quote by him really says it all: ''Just because you can charge them more, doesn't mean you should.''
Staff salaries, for example, have grown from $34 million to $49 million under Brandon, including a 62-percent increase in administrator compensation. The athletic department’s spending on “Marketing, promotions and ticketing,” and “Professional travel and conference dues,” have tripled to almost three million. But perhaps most surprising is the $2.6 million the department now spends on “Hosting, Food and Special Events,” an increase of almost 500-percent
In other words, the additional millions the fans are now being forced to pay are not going to the students on the field, but the suits in the building – including almost a million dollars a year for the Athletic Director himself, three times the salary of his predecessor.
Hey Brandon, why don't you take some of your salary and put it back into the football budget where it belongs. Last time I checked the amount we spend on the football program compared to osu, texas, and others was significantly less.
Over on the Chris Petersen forum thread, Space Coyote commented that Petersen will get at Washington a program he can build as he wants "and isn't required to get 9-10 wins every year."
This is something I've been thinking about lately ... that is, the disparity in expectations among major college football programs, and whether the 4-team playoff coming next year increases the pressure for coaches at high-expectation schools.
It's simply a fact some programs have much higher football success expectations than other programs. Persistent losing is rarely tolerated, but there are plenty of programs where 9-win seasons keep everyone happy. Washington is probably one of those programs. But for places like Ohio State, Alabama, Florida, Texas, USC, Oklahoma ... the expectation is much higher.
So my question is this: Does the new 4-team playoff structure create more pressure on those high-expectation programs? Or less?
I'd argue more. My reasoning is this: today there's an escape hatch for high-performing programs that don't get into the BCS title game. It usually takes a perfect season and some luck to get into the BCS title game. A 10-2 or even 11-1 season won't always get you there, but it's still a great season and coaches can make that argument and generally it'll be accepted.
But with the new playoff system the expectation will be to get into that playoff. Winning it all will be great, of course ... but failing to get into the playoff will be a greater magnified shortfall.
Now there'll be four slots, so the competition is going to be fierce to be in the top 4. Four slots is twice as many as two, and the "perfect season and some luck" argument is diminished. "We finished 10-2!" the coach will argue. "Yeah, but you didn't get into the playoff so you fell short!" will be the counter-argument.
Some programs won't play that game ... preferring instead to play their game and if the record is 8-4 or 9-3 with no playoff, then okay. But the high-expectation schools are going to go all out to make the available playoff slots. Thus my argument that things get more intense, not less.
I created post that listed all the links I've done for OSU and MSU this year with regards to their 2013 football teams. For those interested in a bit of a primer before the B1G Championship game so that you know what to look for, you can follow the link (where there are 18 total posts about these two teams).
If you don't want to go through all of them, I'll pull out some of my favorites:
Here's a general look at OSU's Flood play, which is probably their favorite way to attack defenses deep, something like this will be a play OSU will likely pull out on any down/distance, because it isolates defenders (including safeties and LBs) on WR in the cover 4, and it requires great communication and great eye-technique in cover 3 on the third and long plays:
Here's a counter look that I hadn't seen before (didn't see it against Michigan, FWIW) that OSU runs out of the inverted veer. I wouldn't be surprised if they pulled it out against MSU if the backside LB chases and the backside safety focuses on coverage instead of LB level fill.
How MSU will use their base offense to attack OSU's defensive weaknesses.