Blog Entry 120 -- Free Fallin'

Posted on: October 13, 2008 11:43 am
Edited on: October 13, 2008 12:52 pm

How low can you go?

For a handful of teams ranked in the preseason Top 25 we are about to find out.

Preseason favorites Auburn, Wisconsin, Arizona State and Clemson all find themselves falling down the rankings in the 120 with a possibility that it could get worse before the season is over.

Auburn, which we all had in our preseason Top 25, fell to No. 42 this week after losing its third game in the past four.

The Tigers started the season at 3-0 before losing a close game with LSU. They then squeaked out a 14-12 victory against Tennessee before losing 14-13 to Vanderbilt and 25-22 to Arkansas.

Auburn was expected to be alot better offensively with Kodi Burns seeing time at quarterback and a strong rushing attack with the combination of Ben Tate and Brad Lester.

But Burns and Chris Todd have combined for only 1,101 passing yards, five touchdowns and nine interceptions. Tate has had some good games, but had only 32 yards rushing against Arkansas and 45 yards against LSU.

"Offensively, we just don't have an identity and that's what we have to do this week," coach Tommy Tuberville said as Auburn prepares to face West Virginia on Oct. 23.

Now Auburn is looking at other options at quarterback, including freshman Barrett Trotter and scout-team quarterback Neil Caudle, who has three attempts in his career.

"To burn a redshirt this late, we wouldn't play [Trotter] four or five plays. We'd get him ready to go," Tuberville told the Birmingham News. "If we're going to play him, we're going to play him."

If things don't get better in a hurry, Auburn will continue to fall down the rankings. After facing the Mountaineers in two weeks, Auburn still has to play Mississippi, Georgia and Alabama on the schedule.

Another team that finds itself in the same boat as Auburn is Wisconsin. Many expected the Badgers to compete for the Big Ten title and a possible BCS Bowl, but the Badgers have lost three in a row and dropped down to No. 44.

Things have fallen apart since the Michigan loss, where the Badgers had a 19-0 lead at halftime. They followed that up with a close loss to Ohio State and then getting blown out by Penn State.

P.J. Hill is averaging just 3.6 yards per carry (191 yards on 53 carries) in the losses with just one touchdown, while quarterback Allan Evridge has four interceptions and only two touchdowns over that stretch.

Wisconsin's schedule isn't as tough as Auburn's, but the Badgers still have to face Illinois, Michigan State and Minnesota.

Arizona State dropped the lowest of all the preseason favorites, falling to No. 64 this week after losing its fourth in a row. Nobody expected them to beat Georgia or USC at the beginning of the season, but they got manhandled in both.

Add in the losses to California and UNLV and the Sun Devils are now fighting just to be bowl-eligible. They still have to face Oregon and Oregon State and then UCLA and Arizona to close the season.

ACC favorite Clemson has lost two in a row, but holds steady at No. 47 after putting together a four-game winning streak earlier. Just as it looked like the Tigers were turing things around, they lost to Maryland 20-17 and Wake Forest 12-7. And now they go and fire Tommy Bowden!

Poll Notes

-- The lowest-ranked BCS team is Syracuse at No. 109. It is 1-5 with its only victory coming against Northeastern. The 'Cuse play at South Florida this week.

-- Mississippi State is the highest-ranked team with a losing record, checking in at No. 57 at 2-4. The Bulldogs moved up this week after beating Vanderbilt.

-- The lowest-ranked team with at least four wins is Arkansas State at No. 83. Their strength of schedule is 119th out of 120 schools, beating Texas A&M (No. 89), Middle Tennessee State (No. 102), Louisiana-Monroe (No. 114) and Texas Southern (FCS).


Since: Sep 11, 2006
Posted on: October 14, 2008 5:56 am 120 -- Free Fallin'

I see why your level your still an amateur you don't have your facts. AUBURN has two wins in the SEC. Auburn is having a down year do to trying to change the style of play. Auburn got screwed in 2004. Every since then all SEC schools are getting their respect,and now it's 2008 and we have won 2 of the last 4? Auburn is the 2nd most winning program in the SEC(behind Lsu) in the last 10 years. If you don't think AUBURN put players in the NFL do some research. (most in the sec).I think AU will get back to the same old football. I read in an earlier post Tate had only 32 yds rushing, failed to mention he had only 8 carries(4 yds a carry)

Since: Sep 9, 2008
Posted on: October 14, 2008 2:29 am 120 -- Free Fallin'


Thanks for doing the work and looking up the Pac10 schedule.  I would have found all that stuff, I just had a hunch that you would do it for me.

If anyone can find fault in the Pac10's nonconference schedule, I would like to see it.  The SEC "toughest conference" argument is full of wholes, and your nonconference schedules aren't helping.  Hopefully the media stops drinking KooAid soon and ranks teams according to their nonconference wins, not just based on "facts" like "Auburn played LSU close".

Since: Sep 14, 2008
Posted on: October 14, 2008 12:53 am 120 -- Free Fallin'


I didn't know we were naming the entire conference's OOC games.  But ask and you shall receive.

I will first start with the Pac 10:

  • Arizona State played preseason #1 Georgia
  • Washington played #8 BYU, preseason #3 Oklahoma, and Notre Dame
  • Washington State played #9 Oklahoma State
  • UCLA played preseason #18 Tennessee, #8 BYU, and preseason #23 Fresno State
  • Oregon played undefeated #15 Boise State and Purdue(which I wouldn't even have counted if you didn't count Arizona State)
  • Oregon State played undefeated #3 Penn State, and undefeated #14 Utah
  • California played #22 Michigan State, and Maryland (the terps are having an impressive season)
  • Stanford played at TCU and Notre Dame
  • USC played #5 Ohio State and plays Notre Dame

Now Let's look at the Big 12:

  • Colorado played Florida State and West Virginia (You named them so I will)
  • Kansas played #19 South Florida
  • Nebraska played Virginia Tech
  • Oklahoma played (5-1) Cincinatti and TCU
  • Missouri played Illinois
  • Texas A&M played Miami
  • Baylor played Wake Forest and UCONN

I feel that the Big 12 OOC schedule matches up with the SEC, but the Pac 10 stands significantly above both of them.  Just let the schedules tell the story. 


Since: Sep 9, 2008
Posted on: October 13, 2008 11:02 pm 120 -- Free Fallin'

I am not "hating first, researching later", I am looking at the SEC's nonconference schedules, and outside of Tennessee, you really have nothing.  Bowl games or not, lots of conferences have good records.  And if I remember, Florida lost to a very very overrated Michigan team that loses to Toledo, among other teams.

The Pac10 has the most difficult nonconference schedule.  If you are going to make me look it up, I will.  Just ask and you'll get the hard truth.

And I like how the Georgia fan talks about "overrated USC" and "overrated SEC" in the same post?

Since: Dec 3, 2006
Posted on: October 13, 2008 10:08 pm 120 -- Free Fallin'

Who cares if they were ranked when they were played - were they ranked when it was scheduled. 

Auburn signed up to play a top 10 ranked West Virginia
Alabama played a top 10 ranked Clemson
Florida signed up to play  supposedly young but  vastly improved Miami and FSU teams
Mississippi State played G.T.  - an ACC favorite
Ole Miss played Wake - the ACC favorite that was ranked and is still ranked.
Tenn played a UCLA team that was supposed to be decent
S.C. played NC State who happened to suck, and play Clemson (preseason top 10)
Arkansas plays Texas (No 1)
Georgia played a ranked and last year's Pac 10 co-champ ASU squad
Kentucky played Louisville
Vandy plays a ranked Wake team

Don't talk unless you know the facts. Those are all decent OOC teams.  I'm not sure what conference you're hyping, but I don't know any that plays an appreciably more difficult out of conference schedule.  Quit hating on the SEC and follow your own damn conference.  We're having a down year and still have the # 2 team and 3 in the top ten.  Gosh, it sure is terrible to be so OVERRATED.  Get a freaking clue.

Since: Oct 6, 2008
Posted on: October 13, 2008 9:54 pm 120 -- Free Fallin'

The barn scored 3 points in it's only SEC victory. They did not score against Vandy after their first two possessions.(and lost the game) They lost to LSU who was anialiated by UF. Lost to Arkansas , who should have lost to L Monroe. The barn will, most likely lose to Bama, UGA, WV and probably UM. I would not be suprised if they lose to Tenn. Martin. Not only will they NOT win 4 of the last 5, but will be fortunate to win 1 of the last 5. If you haven't doen it yet, get ready for a rude awakening. 

Since: Feb 18, 2008
Posted on: October 13, 2008 9:51 pm 120 -- Free Fallin'

You are right. USC lost to a 41 point underdog at home last year and to a two loss unranked Oregon State that had a true freshmen run for 186 yards against a very overrated USC. The same team that jumped to number one playing Virginia!!! Now bias is as I stated before the Media Bowl is USC and OHIO STATE. We have seen how bad Ohio State has played and they still climb. USC played a sloppy game against a beat up Arizona State. LSU and Georgia played ranked teams and lost but USC lost to a unranked team that dominated them on both sides of the ball as is number six. They are breathing too much smoke in California. Thanks for the lack of confernces and no championship game. Come play in the overrated SEC and see what happens to Sanchez. He is getting hurt playing nobody now.

Since: Sep 14, 2008
Posted on: October 13, 2008 9:50 pm 120 -- Free Fallin'

Just read what my man Fresh LA Style said.....

That's exactly my point.

You just called Troy a touch out of conference game.  Also let me correct you:  Vanderbilt did not play Wake Forest. 

The big argument though is about Auburn.  The big problem I have is that Auburn was ranked #20 when they had a 4-2 record and really in my opinion ZERO "Top 25 Worthy Wins." 

Since: Sep 18, 2006
Posted on: October 13, 2008 9:12 pm 120 -- Free Fallin'

If you want to smear the SEC start by refuting the strongest argument *for* SEC superiority, their 2007 bowl record: 7-2! For those of you who hate first research later, a bowl game is where two evenly matched teams from differing conferences play each other after a successful year against whatever opponents they had, crappy or not. IMO, the SEC is generally rebuilding but there is plenty of ball yet to play and I think we are in a new age of parity for college football. Perhaps a few seasons of 2 loss National Champions will usher in a playoff. I can only hope!

Since: Sep 9, 2008
Posted on: October 13, 2008 7:15 pm 120 -- Free Fallin'

jdwatkins, try to find something good about Auburn's 2004 schedule out of the conference. can't.  All SEC teams schedule horrible teams and as a result, they have to promote themselves as being "tough" and "the best conference" to make up for their weaknesses outside of the conference.

Clemson? LOL  Wake Forest?  LOL...the ACC teams are weak nonconference

WVU is a game that Auburn likely will lose...they dominated a Georgia team and Oklahoma in BCS bowls recently

UCLA?  Are you kidding me?  They just lost 59-0 to BYU.

Arizona State is terrible.  Believe me, I know.  Mark Sanchez has 4 straight turnovers and and AZ State can't even score a field goal?

Troy?  Ok, give me a break here.  When scheduling midmajors, at least go for someone who has a chance against you, such as Utah or Fresno State, the Sunbelt hasn't won anything.

The whole SEC nonconference schedule is a joke.  That's why they talk up the SEC as being so high and mighty or else they would just be the Big East.

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or