Monday, February 16, 2009

BCS Might Be In Trouble…Kind of…Sort Of

There are more reports of lawmakers pushing to get a playoff system in the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS). The latest stab at the BCS is from three Congressmen, Gary Miller (R-California), Joe Barton (R-Texas) and Neil Abercrombie (D-Hawaii). The three Congressmen have called for a set of hearings in an effort to enact a playoff in the FBS division.

Also, Utah state legislature is calling for a playoff system in college football. The state senate sent a resolution to President Barack Obama’s desk urging the NCAA to abandon the Bowl Championship Series in favor of a playoff.

The bad news is, the likelihood of a playoff system any time soon is dismal. The BCS recently signed a four-year, $125 million deal with ESPN to televise the National Championship Game, the Orange, the Fiesta and Sugar bowls starting in 2011 and running through 2014.

So, like we have said before, it all comes down to money. And the BCS holds it all.

For more information on The Miller Plan (H.R. 599), you can click here.

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Monday, February 9, 2009

Underclassmen Leaving For The 2009 NFL Draft

Sometimes it gets quite confusing on trying to figure out who is staying for another college season and who is leaving for the Pros this time of year. By now, the underclassmen that are exiting college for the big moolah have already announced their intentions. But I figured it would be nice to have a list of those heading to the NFL.

Moreno Georgia Running Back Knowshon Moreno Will Be NFL Bound In 2009

So here’s a list of prominent underclassmen leaving college for the NFL.

Player                     Position         Year          School

Donald Brown                RB                 Jr          Connecticut

Everette Brown             DE                 Jr           Florida State

Michael Crabtree          WR               So          Texas Tech

Nate Davis                   QB                 Jr           Ball State

Vontae Davis                DB                 Jr           Illinois

Josh Freeman              QB                Jr            Kansas State

Shonn Greene              RB                Jr            Iowa

Percy Harvin               WR               Jr            Florida

P.J. Hill                       RB                Jr            Wisconsin

Paul Kruger                  DE                So             Utah

Sen’Derrick Marks       DT               Jr             Auburn

Jeremy Macklin           WR               So           Missouri

Aaron Maybin              DE                So           Penn State

LeSean McCoy             RB                So          Pittsburgh

Knowshon Moreno       RB                 So           Georgia

Hakeem Nicks            WR                Jr           North Carolina

Mark Sanchez             QB                Jr          Southern California

Andre Smith               OL                Jr            Alabama

Matt Stafford             QB                Jr             Georgia

Chris Wells                RB                 Jr             Ohio State

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Sunday, February 8, 2009

Recruiting Scorecards By Conference

Here’s a recruiting scorecard for each conference. These scorecards give a quick breakdown of how each team did in the conference for the 2009 recruiting class. The teams are in order from the highest number of signed recruits to the fewest signed recruits.

ACC  

acc

School Signed ESPNU150 JC Off Def ST ATH
1. UNC 29 4 3 12 12 1 4
2. NC State 28 0 3 9 15 1 3
3. Duke 27 0 0 10 13 0 4
4. Maryland 26 1 2 10 14 1 1
5. Virginia 25 1 0 13 10 0 2
6. Virginia Tech 21 2 1 6 10 1 4
7. Georgia Tech 21 0 0 9 11 0 1
8. Wake Forest 21 0 0 7 10 1 3
9. Florida State 19 5 0 9 8 1 1
10. Miami 19 6 2 9 8 0 2
11. Boston College 17 0 0 8 8 1 0
12. Clemson 12 4 1 7 5 0 0

 

Big 12

big_12

School Signed ESPNU150 JC Off Def ST ATH
1. Kansas State 30 0 5 12 13 1 4
2. Baylor 29 1 5 17 9 0 3
3. Texas A&M 28 1 1 8 15 1 4
4. Texas Tech 25 0 1 11 12 0 2
5. Missouri 25 1 3 11 13 0 1
6. Kansas 24 0 3 9 13 0 2
7. Oklahoma 23 6 3 9 14 0 0
8. Oklahoma State 23 1 4 8 13 0 2
9. Iowa State 23 0 5 9 10 0 4
10. Nebraska 21 0 2 9 9 0 3
11.Texas 20 9 0 9 11 0 0
12. Colorado 19 0 1 10 8 1 0

 

Big East

big_east

School Signed ESPN150 JC Off Def ST ATH
1. South Florida 29 1 7 10 15 0 4
2. Cincinnati 26 0 3 10 11 1 4
3. West Virginia 25 1 2 13 11 0 1
4. Rutgers 23 2 0 8 11 0 4
5. Louisville 23 0 6 9 13 0 1
6. Connecticut 21 0 3 9 9 1 2
7. Pittsburgh 20 0 1 12 6 0 2
8. Syracuse 14 0 2 6 8 0 0

 

Big Ten

big_ten

School

Signed ESPNU150 JC Off Def ST ATH

1. Penn State

27 2 0 11 11 1 4

2. Ohio State

26 7 0 14 10 0 0

3. Michigan State

23 2 0 12 10 1 2

4. Michigan

22 7 0 9 7 1 5

5. Wisconsin

21 1 0 11 8 0 2

6. Minnesota

20 1 2 11 6 1 2

7. Illinois

20 1 1 10 8 0 2

8. Purdue

20 0 0 7 10 0 3

9. Iowa

19 1 1 15 4 0 0

10. Northwestern

18 0 0 8 9 1 0

11. Indiana

18 0 0 10 5 1 2

 

PAC 10

pac_10

School Signed ESPN150 JC Off Def ST ATH
1. Arizona 25 0 6 14 10 0 1
2. UCLA 24 4 2 12 10 0 2
3. Oregon 24 1 4 8 13 2 1
4. Oregon State 24 0 1 12 7 0 5
5. Stanford 22 2 0 14 8 0 0
6. Washington State 22 0 1 7 13 0 2
7. Arizona State 21 2 2 10 7 0 4
8. USC 18 9 2 8 9 1 3
9. California 18 1 4 5 9 1 0
10. Washington 18 0 6 3 11 1 3

 

SEC

sec

Schools Signed ESPNU150 JC Off Def ST ATH
1. Mississippi 38 3 4 16 17 2 3
2. Arkansas 31 1 6 15 13 0 3
3. Alabama 29 9 2 14 15 0 0
4. South Carolina 29 6 7 12 15 0 2
5. Auburn 28 0 5 12 11 0 5
6. Kentucky 28 1 4 13 14 0 1
7. Mississippi State 27 2 6 12 8 2 5
8. LSU 25 10 2 6 13 1 3
9. Tennessee 20 4 2 8 12 0 2
10. Georgia 18 8 0 6 8 0 2
11. Vanderbilt 17 0 0 11 6 0 0
12. Florida 16 8 2 9 6 0 1

 

Conference USA

conference_usa

Schools Signed ESPNU150 JC Off Def ST ATH
1. Southern Methodist 28 0 3 12 13 1 2
2. Tulane 26 0 1 12 12 1 1
3. Tulsa 25 0 3 12 11 0 2
4. Houston 25 0 5 11 11 0 3
5. Marshall 24 0 4 11 11 0 2
6. Memphis 24 0 10 15 8 1 0
7. Rice 24 0 0 10 11 1 2
8. UAB 23 0 9 9 14 0 0
9. UCF 23 0 2 8 13 0 2
10. Southern Miss. 22 0 5 13 8 0 1
11. UTEP 21 0 5 10 9 0 2
12. East Carolina 19 0 2 8 10 0 1

 

MAC

mac

Schools Signed ESPNU150 JC Off Def ST ATH
1. Central Michigan 30 0 0 14 14 0 2
2. Temple 28 0 8 11 15 1 1
3. Miami (OH) 25 0 0 11 14 0 0
4. Western Michigan 24 0 4 16 8 0 0
5. Akron 24 0 4 12 10 1 1
6. Northern Illinois 24 0 4 8 13 2 1
7. Buffalo 23 0 2 12 11 0 0
8. Ball State 22 0 0 12 8 0 2
9. Bowling Green 22 0 0 10 10 0 2
10. Ohio 22 0 3 14 7 0 1
11. Eastern Michigan 22 0 5 7 14 0 1
12. Kent State 22 0 7 9 11 1 1
13. Toledo 21 0 2 8 11 1 1

 

Mountain West

mountain_west

Schools Signed ESPNU150 JC Off Def ST ATH
1. Wyoming 24 0 1 11 13 0 0
2. Utah 23 0 7 11 12 0 0
3. Colorado State 23 0 3 11 11 1 0
4. UNLV 22 0 5 10 11 0 1
5. Brigham Young 21 0 3 14 6 0 1
6. TCU 20 0 1 8 10 0 2
7. San Diego State 20 0 0 11 7 0 2
8. New Mexico 19 0 1 11 5 1 2

 

Sun Belt

sun_belt

Schools Signed ESPNU150 JC Off Def ST ATH
1. Troy 39 0 14 19 19 0 1
2. Louisiana-Monroe 27 0 3 15 10 0 2
3. Florida Atlantic 26 0 0 11 13 1 1
4. Florida Intl. 23 0 3 10 11 1 1
5. Middle Tennessee St. 23 0 0 7 12 0 4
6. Arkansas St. 21 0 2 10 9 0 2
7. North Texas 21 0 7 9 11 1 0
8. Louisiana-Lafayette 18 0 4 9 7 0 2

 

WAC

wac

Schools Signed ESPNU150 JC Off Def ST ATH
1. Hawaii 29 0 9 13 14 0 2
2. Louisiana Tech 26 0 3 14 11 1 0
3. New Mexico State 22 0 12 11 9 0 2
4. Boise State 21 0 1 10 10 0 1
5. Idaho 20 0 3 10 9 0 1
6. Utah State 20 0 8 10 10 0 0
7. Fresno State 17 0 1 3 13 0 1
8. Nevada 17 0 5 9 7 1 0
9. San Jose State 17 0 3 9 7 1 0

 

Independents

Western Kentucky Notre Dame

 

Schools Signed ESPNU150 JC Off Def ST ATH
1. Western Kentucky 26 0 1 11 11 1 3
2. Notre Dame 18 7 0 7 5 2 4

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Friday, February 6, 2009

Blabber News

Tennessee

It appears that new Volunteers’ head coach Lane Kiffin has opened mouth, inserted foot. Kiffin was reprimanded by the Southeastern Conference and issued an apology Thursday after he falsely accused Florida coach Urban Meyer of a recruiting violation.

Earlier in the day, Kiffin told fans at a breakfast celebrating the Volunteers' recruiting class that Meyer violated rules by phoning Nu'Keese Richardson while the wide receiver prospect was on an official visit at Tennessee.

"I love the fact that Urban had to cheat and still didn't get him," Kiffin said, according to a WVLT-TV report.

NCAA and Southeastern Conference officials said it is not against recruiting rules to contact a recruit while they are on an official visit to another school.

Florida athletic director Jeremy Foley delivered a quick and harsh response to Kiffin's statement and called for him to apologize.

Urban Meyer stinkeye Florida’s Urban Meyer could be giving Volunteers’ coach Lane Kiffin the stink eye

"It is obvious that coach Kiffin doesn't know that there is not a rule precluding phone contact with a prospect during an official visit on another campus during a contact period," Foley said in a statement. "His allegations are inappropriate, out of line and, most importantly, totally false. It is completely unfair to Urban Meyer, our coaching staff, our football program and our institution," he said.

SEC commissioner Mike Slive then reprimanded Kiffin for publicly criticizing Meyer, which is against the league's code of ethics. That led to Kiffin apologizing.

Looks like Lane Kiffin is already making new friends in the SEC.

Texas-San Antonio

Former Miami coach Larry Coker has applied to lead the new Texas-San Antonio football program in what would be his first head coaching job since the Hurricanes fired him in 2006.

Coker, who led Miami to the BCS championship in 2001 and is currently an ESPN college football analyst, told the San Antonio Express-News he spoke to UTSA over the phone about the job last month.

Coker said athletic director Lynn Hickey did not indicate if or when he might be interviewed. School officials have said they hope to have a head coach in place by March 1, and UTSA hopes to make its college football debut in 2011.

I guess Coker is looking for a fresh start somewhere.

Maryland

Maryland football coach Ralph Friedgen eventually will be replaced by assistant head coach/offensive coordinator James Franklin.

No timeline for the succession was announced by the university Friday. The school scheduled a news conference later Friday with Franklin, Friedgen and Athletic Director Deborah Yow.

FriedgenTerps’ Head Coach Ralph Friedgen

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Thursday, February 5, 2009

Recruiting Roundup: Ohio State #1 In Recruiting For 2009 Class

Ohio State topped the leader board in recruiting for 2009. Here is the schools with the top 25 recruiting classes of 2009, according to Scout.com

1. Ohio State

The Buckeyes went wire-to-wire as Scout's No. 1 class. Ohio State got off to a fast start with 22 commitments pledging to the Buckeyes by the Fourth of July. It had been a quiet autumn for the Buckeyes with only one commitment since Sept. 1. Then they locked up the No. 1 spot by signing offensive tackle Marcus Hall. The Buckeyes are looking to inject a heavy dose of speed with five defensive backs signed, headlined by two-way athlete Corey Brown and offensive imports from the Sunshine State in running back Jamaal Berry and wide receiver Duron Carter.

2. Alabama

Alabama made another mad dash for the No. 1 spot, only to come up just short. With a solid contingent already committed before Signing Day, Alabama had a huge Signing Day haul, including linebacker Tana Patrick, running back Eddie Lacy and offensive tackle Brandon Moore. Alabama has an impressive class across the board, headlined by five-star-rated running back Trent Richardson, linebacker Nico Johnson and cornerback Dre Kirkpatrick. Michael Bowman and Kevin Norwood are big, talented receivers who should complement Julio Jones well. Alabama recruited depth and talent at every position including a deep pool of offensive linemen spearheaded by massive tackle D.J. Fluker.

3. LSU

Ruben Randle's signing was a big reason LSU was ranked so highly.

The Bayou Bengals of LSU enjoy one of the best location-based recruiting advantages in the entire country as the only BCS school in a talent-rich area. Les Miles and his Tigers have stretched beyond the state of Louisiana though, securing a commitment from one of the most dangerous players in the country in quarterback Russell Shepard of Houston. LSU also has a commitment from the nation's No. 1-ranked safety prospect in Craig Loston, another Texas product. All of the big names aren't from out of state though, as five-star defensive tackle Chris Davenport hopes to maintain the recent tradition of dominating interior linemen for the Tigers. Michael Ford, Scout's No. 3 running back, also hails from Louisiana. Signing Day decisions by defensive end Sam Montgomery, linebacker Barkevious Mingo, and No. 1 wide receiver Ruben Randle lifted the class.

4. UCLA

One of the big movers on Signing Day, UCLA had a terrrific finish with signatures from big offensive linemen Xavier Su'a-Filo and Stan Hasiak, as well as a cross-country pull in four-star running back Damien Thigpen. UCLA also signed a top-10 class in 2008. Four-star quarterback Richard Brehaut could be thrust into action early next year, and a new favorite target should be the nation's No. 1 tight end, Morrell Presley. Presley wasn't the only former Trojan commit that inked with UCLA. Randall Carroll made the switch as well, vaulting the Bruins past the Trojans in the rankings and into the top 5.

5. North Carolina

North Carolina did a terrific job of securing the state's top talent. With four ACC teams within the state borders, the Tar Heels secured signatures from five of the top seven prospects from North Carolina. UNC is doing more than just securing its own borders though with high-profile commitments from out-of-staters, including quarterback Bryn Renner (Virginia) and offensive linemen Brennan Williams (Massachusetts) and Johnnie Farms (Georgia). The headliner in this Tar Heel class, though, is a homegrown product: Scout.com's No. 1 defensive end Donte Moss from Jacksonville, N.C.

6. Texas

No stranger to the top 10, Texas selects players as much as it recruits them. The Longhorns have taken early recruiting to a new level, as they've typically filled their class by the spring evaluation period. Of Texas' 20 signees, only one of them occurred after June 1, and only one of them has come from outside the state borders. Quarterback Garrett Gilbert and wide receiver Greg Timmons provide the sizzle in this Longhorn class, while big linemen Alex Okafor (defensive end) and Mason Walters (offensive tackle) provide the steak.

7. USC

The Trojans are headlined by Scout's No. 1-ranked quarterback Matt Barkley of Santa Ana, Calif. The Trojans are bringing in a bevy of speedy, versatile defenders who Scout currently has ranked as safeties, including No. 2 T.J. McDonald, No. 4 Patrick Hall, No. 5 Jawanza Starling and No. 6 Byron Moore. The Trojans felt an unusual amount of competition from crosstown rival UCLA and seemed to recruit against their own depth chart for much of January with an inordinate amount of losses on their commitment list, including wide receiver Ashlon Jeffrey to South Carolina. Starling and Georgia linebacker Jarvis Jones helped ease any Signing Day pain the Trojans may have been feeling.

8. Georgia

The Bulldogs have a pair of highly regarded quarterbacks signed in No. 3 Aaron Murray and No. 14 Zach Mettenberger. Wide receiver Marlon Brown is a five-star target who should complement A.J. Greene well, but it's on the defensive side of the ball where Georgia has made a mark. No. 2-ranked cornerback Brandon Smith is one of the fastest players in the country and is a weapon on either side of the ball. The linebacking corps is scheduled for a heavy dose of speed as Mike Gilliard, Chase Vasser and Dexter Moody are all long, rangy athletes. Defensive end Montez Robinson may have the most upside of any of the commitments; he's a 4.5-40 defensive end who is new to the game.

9. Oklahoma

It appears at least one team in the Big 12 is getting serious about defense. After watching teams light up the scoreboard like a pinball machine in the Big 12, the Sooners are bringing in several players capable of making early contributions including Scout's No. 1 cornerback Gabe Lynn. Lynn is one of five defensive backs in this Sooner class. Defensive tackle Jamarkus McFarland may be the top prospect regardless of position in this class, and Oklahoma also received signatures from five linebackers. Linebacker Ronnell Lewis was the Sooners' first commitment for the Class of 2009. He saw his ranking skyrocket at the end of his senior season.

10. Penn State

While the big question in Happy Valley for the last several years has surrounded Joe Paterno and his future, the present for Penn State has never looked better. A Rose Bowl appearance on the field and a top-10 class off of it have given Paterno more ammo to fight off his doubters. While skill-position players get more ink, it's the offensive linemen who can make or break a team, and Penn State is bringing in one of the top linemen in the country in Eric Shrive. Scout's No. 2 offensive tackle in the country should protect the blind side and open up holes for dynamic dual threat quarterback Kevin Newsome. "Linebacker U" isn't ready to forfeit its title as Glenn Carson and Gerald Hodges are big-time talents. Wide receiver Justin Brown is an exciting offensive prospect who should work well with Newsome.

11. Michigan

Michigan is bringing in a nice blend of "system" players, as well as players that fit any system. There are smaller, faster players who will specifically fit Rich Rodriguez's style of offense, like receiver Jeremy Gallon and quarterback Tate Forcier. And there are big linemen who fit any scheme, including five-star defensive tackle William Campbell and bookend offensive tackles Michael Schofield and Taylor Lewan.

12. Texas A&M

The Aggies of Texas A&M are going for a heavy dose of talent infusion in the Class of 2009 with 27 commitments and a top-15 ranking that has held steady all recruiting season. While the Aggies had most of their recruiting done by the time the 2008 season kicked off, the headliner in this class came just after Christmas in the form of Scout's No. 4-ranked running back, Christine Michael. Michael should get plenty of help as two of the Aggies' most highly regarded prospects are offensive tackles Rhontae Scales and Clinton Narron.

13. South Carolina

Never known as a recruiter at Florida to the same extent that he was thought of as a great football coach, the "Evil Genius" has made some people have to rethink their definition of Steve Spurrier. The Gamecocks have gone head to head with in-state rival Clemson and held their own, getting a big commitment from five-star safety Stephon Gilmore. The Gamecocks have added some explosion in the offensive backfield in running back Jarvis Giles, a former Tennessee commitment. Jumbo safety Devonte Holloman has as much potential as anyone in the country, and if the light comes on for him, he's an NFL player. South Carolina also had a big Signing Day switch in the form of wide receiver Ashlon Jeffrey, who had previously been committed to USC.

14. Stanford

One of the surprises of the recruiting season was Stanford. The Cardinal staff has recruited well across the board but was particularly successful at tight end. Zach Ertz and Levine Toilolo are ranked the No. 4 and No. 6 tight ends in the country respectively, and Ryan Hewitt is No. 30 nationally. Shayne Skov was Stanford's first commitment, and the No. 3 middle linebacker is also the highest-rated on the board at five stars. The one concern in this class may be on the offensive line, but with three tight ends and four defensive linemen committed, Stanford has ample athletic big men in this class.

15. Auburn

Bolstered by re-signees like five-star linebacker Eltoro Freeman, four-star running back Onterrio McCalebb and four-star defensive lineman Nick Fairley, Auburn's new staff hit the recruiting trails hard and secured previously committed players like tight end Philip Lutzenkirchen and defensive end Dee Ford. The hiring of Gene Chizik from Iowa State raised a lot of eyebrows among Auburn followers, but staff additions such as Trooper Taylor, Tracy Rocker, Ted Roof and Gus Malzahn should pay future dividends on the recruiting trail.

16. Ole Miss

No one made a stronger Signing Day dash than the Ole Miss Rebels. Ole Miss had seven commitments when the season kicked off, and at last count on Signing Day, the Rebels were at a whopping 37 signatures, including huge recruiting wins like five-star wide receiver Pat Patterson, the nation's No. 1 postgraduate player offensive tackle Bobby Massie, four-star quarterback Raymond Cotton, and linebacker Willie Ferrell among others. Houston Nutt didn't arrive in Oxford with the reputation as a great recruiter, but he served notice to the rest of the south on Signing Day.

17. Florida State

There was a time in the not-so-distant past that the Florida State Seminoles were the strongest closers in recruiting. While Florida State has changed its philosophy to a certain extent with big early commitments, including the nation's No. 1 defensive tackle Jaccobi McDaniel and athlete Willie Downs, the Seminoles haven't completely given up on the last-minute drama. Cornerback Greg Reid, a former Florida commitment, was a bit of a Signing Day surprise.

18. Mississippi State

While Mississippi State struggled on the football field in 2008, head coach Sylvester Croom had done an outstanding job of hitting the recruiting trails heavily, taking advantage of a coaching-transition year at rival Ole Miss. Croom didn't survive the 2008 season, but much of his work in recruiting did. Import former Florida offensive coordinator Dan Mullen to run the show, and Mississippi State has been able not only to solidify prior commitments, but bring some high-profile targets on board, including four-star wide receiver Chad Bumphis. Quarterback Tyler Russell has the physical ability the Bulldogs have been missing at the position for years.

19. Miami

Miami was serious about restocking its talent level last year when it signed a whopping 33 prospects for the Class of 2008. Many of those players made an immediate impact, including quarterback Jacory Harris and linebacker Sean Spence. While the numbers aren't going to be the same for the Class of 2009, the quality will still be there. With 18 commitments, Miami is going long on quality with a commitment from Scout's No. 1 prospect regardless of position, running back Bryce Brown. Brown didn't sign his scholarship papers on Signing Day, but he still considers himself a Miami commmitment. Miami's running back haul for the Class of 2009 should help the Hurricanes remember the days of dominant running backs, as Brown is joined by four-star runners Lamar Miller and Mike James. On defense, Ray Ray Armstrong and Brandon McGee are difference-makers at safety and cornerback respectively.

20. Arkansas

When he was at Louisville, Bobby Petrino was my choice as the coach who got the most out of his talent. Now that he's at Arkansas, he's attracting an even higher level of player. That's good news in Fayetteville as Arkansas is securing the state's top talent, including five-star athlete Darius Winston and offensive guard Colby Berna. The recruit likely to make the biggest impact for the Razorbacks is former No. 2 quarterback Ryan Mallett, who started at Michigan and sat out his transfer year last season.

21. Florida

Florida found itself in a similar situation to USC this year, an annual recruiting power having more trouble recruiting against its own depth than against other teams. Florida uncharacteristically lost a couple of commitments the last few days before Signing Day, but all is not lost in Gainesville. Wide receiver Andre Dubose, defensive tackle Gary Brown, linebacker Jelani Jenkins, and offensive tackle Xavier Nixon are rated at five stars by Scout. While Signing Day may have been a bit disappointing for Florida fans, the Gators have to be considered the odds-on favorite to repeat as BCS champion. When a team has trouble recruiting because it's too good, that's a nice problem to have.

22. Tennessee

The Tennessee Vols stood up and issued a challenge to the Mighty Gators. Two of Tennessee's Signing Day switches came right off the Florida commitment list in Marsalis Teague and Nu'Keese Richardson. Teague and Richardson have similar stories in that both of them are quarterbacks who will play another position in college. Teague is the thicker of the two and will find himself on defense; Richardson is an open space nightmare at wide receiver and one of the most explosive prospects in the country. This could be as low as we see Tennessee for several years.

23. West Virginia

Pat White, Noel Devine and the exciting Mountaineers offense have gotten the attention of recruits around the country, as West Virginia's five highest-rated commitments are on the offensive side of the ball. Quarterback Eugene Smith of Miramar, Fla., will add a more vertical threat to West Virginia's offense as he is a terrific passer with good mobility. Smith is bringing a pair of highly regarded receivers to West Virginia with him in No. 8 Logan Heastie and No. 15 Deon Long. It's not all about offense for West Virginia though as defensive tackle Dominik Davenport and safety Jonathan Scott can play for anyone.

24. Notre Dame

Notre Dame's No. 2 recruiting class last year on the heels of the worst season in Irish history is arguably the most impressive job of recruiting I've ever seen. The Irish have come back to earth a little this year, but that's understandable with back-to-back disappointing years and questions about Charlie Weis' future much of the summer and fall. Hawaiian hit man Manti T'eo, Scout's No. 1 linebacker, was a Signing Day surprise for the Irish, but the class is headlined by big men in the trenches. Chris Watt is Scout's No. 1 offensive guard, and he'll have company with No. 6-ranked guard Alex Bullard. The main benefactor of these two people movers is No. 6-ranked running back Cierre Wood. Shaq Evans is a two-way standout from California who could make an impact at wide receiver or safety.

25. USF

The USF Bulls have gotten a taste of the big time, and they're not anxious to give it up any time soon going after getting players they expect to make an impact right away. USF is bringing in eight junior college or postgrad players including five-star defensive end Jason Pierre Paul and four star defensive tackle Leslie Stirrups. It's not all about the older players though, as Tampa native Ryne Giddens is the No. 12 defensive end in the country by Scout, and is a landmark recruit of sorts for the Bulls. He's the first high school player that was heavily pursued by "the big three" of Florida, Florida State, and Miami, and chose USF. The Bulls have had more success on the field than two of the big three the last couple of years, and recruits are taking notice.

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Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Blabber News

Florida State

Wide receiver Preston Parker was dismissed from the Florida State football team following a DUI arrest. This was Parker’s second arrest in less than a year, and third arrest since 2006.

According to Seminole Head Coach Bobby Bowden, Parker will remain in school on scholarship.

Ohio State

Buckeyes offensive lineman Alex Boone was arrested after being smacked with a Taser for a drunken tirade in Orange County, California.

Police reports said Boone was jumping on car hoods and trying to break a window, or just plain ole going ape sh*t. Boone fled police, but was found hiding under a patio. Boone was very combative and yelling obscenities at officers. His blood-alcohol level was three-times the legal limit.

Boone has not been booked as of yet, but police are investigating resisting arrest.

In other Ohio State news, Athletic Director Gene Smith announced that for the first time in his four-year tenure the Buckeye’s athletic department will be in debt. Smith projected that revenues are down between $300,000 to $500,000 for the year.

To cope with the shortage, the athletic department will raise ticket prices for football and men’s basketball $1.

What happened to the BCS Bowl money Ohio State just got?? Hmmm.

Georgia

Tailback Richard Samuel, the leading candidate to replace Knowshon Moreno, will miss spring ball because of surgery on his left wrist.

Samuel injured the wrist during the Bulldog’s victory over Michigan State in the Capital One Bowl .

He is expected to be fully recovered for the 2009 season.

Check back periodically for more Blabber News!

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Monday, February 2, 2009

Weekly Blabber 2/2/2009

Welcome to the first Weekly Blabber of February. As I have mentioned before, Weekly Blabber is an opinion post for each week. Weekly Blabber will usually be about the latest or hottest topic circling college football.


The Weekly Blabber for February 2, 2009, will be on the Mountain West Conference's recent push to get a BCS automatic bid. For those that are unfamiliar, the BCS (Bowl Championship Series) is made up of the six major football conferences: the ACC, the Big East, the Big Ten, the Big Twelve, the PAC Ten, and the SEC. Each conference has an automatic tie-in for each BCS Bowl: Rose Bowl, Orange Bowl, Fiesta Bowl and the Sugar Bowl. For example, usually the ACC Champion will play the Big East Champion in the Orange Bowl, the PAC Ten Champion usually plays the Big Ten Champion in the Rose Bowl, and so on. With the BCS Bowls comes a hefty paycheck for the participating conferences.


This is the reason the Mountain West is lobbying for an automatic BCS Bowl tie-in... the big money. The Mountain West is a "mid-major" conference, which means it is considered to be a notch below the BCS conferences as far as national contention goes. The Mountain West Conference consists of Air Force, BYU, Colorado State, UNLV, New Mexico, San Diego State, TCU, Utah, and Wyoming.
The Mountain West Conference brought up the argument of an automatic BCS Bowl tie-in mainly because of the strength of its team's recent BCS Bowl record and final poll records. In the 2005 Fiesta Bowl, Utah defeated Pitt, and then defeated Alabama in the 2009 Sugar Bowl. Both seasons the Utes were unbeaten at 13-0, finishing fourth in 2005 and second in 2009 for the final poll. The Mountain West Conference teams finished the 2008 season ranked second (Utah), seventh (TCU), and 25th (BYU).


So, the question is..... Does the Mountain West Conference deserve an automatic BCS Bowl tie-in? My answer to that is...... not yet. The reason for my answer is that although the Mountain West teams have performed very well as of late, the conference is not strong enough from top to bottom. Utah, BYU, and TCU had great seasons in 2008, but UNLV, San Diego State, Wyoming, and New Mexico only had 15 wins combined. Another reason the conference will get friction for bowl tie-in consideration is the legal matters involved. There is a swarm of contracts that spans eleven conferences, two TV networks, and four bowls.


I think the best recipe for the Mountain West Conference is to keep doing what they are doing. The conference must do three things: continue getting impressive bowls wins, continue having three or more teams in final poll results, and improve the programs of Colorado State, UNLV, New Mexico, San Diego State, and Wyoming. The Mountain West is surely taking the correct strides towards becoming a BCS conference. But I believe it will be a few years down the road before they see the fruits of their labors.

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