Blog Entry

Deep thoughts on a football Saturday

Posted on: September 7, 2008 4:31 pm
Edited on: September 7, 2008 4:44 pm

Six shopping days left until Ohio State-USC. A quick breakdown ...

USC offense: Mark Sanchez looks comfortable and with that rocket arm should have a big day in the Coliseum. The 
Trojans receivers won't have it as easy as they did against Virginia. The multi-headed running back combo might be 
the toughest group Ohio State will see all season.

USC defense:  This might be the unit that wins it for USC. This game is what Pete Carroll has been scheming for all offseason. Ohio State must win the line of scrimmage. It won't.

Ohio State defense: It played when it had to against Ohio. Disinterested most of the game, this group will be at its peak against USC. It must get a rush on Sanchez going against a still-suspect USC line. The veteran defensive 
backfield must create cover sacks.

Ohio State offense: I'm convinced Jim Tressel used about three plays against Ohio, trying to save everything for the Trojans. It's clear that Terrelle Pryor is going to have to have an impact. Todd Boeckman is a sitting duck for 
USC's ferocious front seven. Pryor is the X factor who creates space especially if Wells isn't 100 percent.

Call it 20-17 USC but that is subject to change.

 Two people have stopped West Virginia's Patrick White lately -- Pittsburgh's Dave Wannstedt and Mountaineers'  coach Bill Stewart. Wannstedt did it last December by stacking the box and daring White to throw. Stewart did it 
Saturday against East Carolina by continuing to try to make White a pocket passer. That played into the Pirates' 
hands. Instead of stacking the box, they were dropped seven and eight players into coverage.

 There is no such official designation but we'll do it here. East Carolina's Skip Holtz is officially the hottest  coach in the country after his team's 24-3 victory. No team has accomplished more than the Pirates who have beaten 
two ranked BCS conference opponents.

Holtz doesn't have an agent but he might have to hire one. Based on his 2-0 start, he will be able to have his pick 
of any open job in the country after this season. The early line: Washington is too far West. Holtz would like to 
stay in the South or the East Coach. The Syracuse opening would get him into a BCS conference but does he really 
want to go to Syracuse? The job is a coach killer.

 Syracuse opening? Come on, get real. Greg Robinson is now 7-30 at the Cuse after losing to Akron.

 Paul Johnson might have found a quarterback and the ACC might have found a favorite. Georgia Tech's 19-16 victory  at Boston College was one of the more impressive of the day. Yellow Jackets Josh Nesbitt, while not the perfect 
option quarterback (123 yards total offense), looks like he is going to be at least serviceable. Nesbitt was clutch 
in the fourth quarter rallying Tech from a 16-10 deficit. 

 Feel good for Vanderbilt's Bobby Johnson. The Commodores are 2-0 after beating South Carolina on Thursday night. 
More importantly, Vandy won its SEC opener and looks like it, maybe -- maybe -- has turned the corner.

Johnson has had bigger victories -- beating then-No. 6 South Carolina last season comes to mind -- but this was 
supposed to be a rebuilding year. Then again every year at Vanderbilt is a rebuilding year. Johnson lost 
All-American receiver Earl Bennett. His quarterback, Chris Nixson, is not Jay Cutler.

 Junior college transfer Chris Todd might have won the quarterback job at Auburn. Todd threw for 248 yards (21 of  31) against Southern Miss in his first start.


 The schedule lines up nicely for LSU now that Gustav has intervened.

Playing Troy on Nov. 15 instead of on Saturday now means that LSU plays five home games in five weeks from Oct. 25 
through Nov. 22. The most significant thing for the Tigers is the loss of a bye week between Alabama on Nov. 8 and 
Ole Miss on Nov. 22. LSU still has eight home games this season, only three of them before Oct. 25.

 Some talking head suggested Saturday that the recent problems at Penn State (2-0 after beating beating Oregon  State 45-14) should be blamed on the players. Huh? Dude, this is why these coaches are paid millions of dollars, to  make sure the players don't rob banks or blow hippie lettuce. It's ultimately up to the coach to recruit kids of 

Boys will be boys, sure, but what's happening at Penn State would be a national scandal if it was anyone else but 
Joe Paterno as coach. It's funny that other programs have leadership from its veteran players. Paterno had to 
suspend three of his senior guys last week a couple of weeks after ESPN portrayed the dearth of the off-field 
problems. Is it possible that in his zeal to win, JoePa took some chances on kids of questionable character?

 One reason why the ACC is struggling. Prior to Florida State opening the season Saturday against Western Carolina, the 11 other ACC teams had averaged 14.6 players seeing action in their first college game. Thirteen FSU players  were expected to make their first career start against the Catamounts. Twenty-eight freshman played mostly because 
more than a dozen Seminoles were sitting out due to academic or disciplinary reasons.

 Southeast Missouri State coach Tony Samuel on playing body bag games (The school got $250,000 to play at  Missouri): "Anytime you put 85 scholarships against 63, or the No. 6 team in the nation against us, it's a tough 
call. But it is what it is, and for us if this was the NFL this would be a preseason game."

 Georgia coach Mark Richt on deciding to redshirt his stud running back Knowshon Moreno in 2006: "That wasn't real  smart on my part. I knew he was good, but I didn't know he was that good."

 Ohio State receiver Brain Hartline on the effort against Ohio: "That was pathetic. It was a pathetic performance. 
OU should've won the game. I don't know how we came out with it."

 Heisman Watch: 1, Sam Bradford, Oklahoma (five touchdowns and a career-best 395 yards vs. Cincinnati); 2, Knowshon  Moreno, Georgia (168 yards and career-best tying three touchdowns vs. Central Michigan); 3. Juice Williams, Illinois  (quarterback school-record 174 rushing yards vs. Eastern Illinois).

 Top five non-BCS schools: 1, East Carolina; 2, BYU; 3, Utah; 4, Fresno State; 5, Tulsa.

 Think it isn't a rivalry now? After having 62 hung on it by South Florida last season, Central Florida lost to the Bulls 31-24 in overtime. The game marked the end of the current series for the schools approximately 100 miles apart. There are those already clamoring for a new series.


 A former high-ranking White House official in the Florida press box on Saturday had this advice for the Democratic party: Ignore Sarah Palin's rising superstar status with the Republicans and concentrate on your own superstar,  Obama.

 Radio recommendation: Indie 103.1 this weekend in L.A. if you're going to the Ohio State game ... Restaurant  recommendation: Ballyhoo Grill in Gainesville. Try the grouper fish tacos.

Category: NCAAF

Since: Sep 11, 2008
Posted on: September 11, 2008 6:11 pm

Deep thoughts on a football Saturday

Just because Greg Robinson was a terrible and head-scratching hire doesn't mean Syracuse is at all a "coach killer". They are still in a high profile conference with competitive facilities and a solid (though eroding under GRob) recruiting base. This is a program that before the Robinson era had ONE LOSING SEASON IN 20 YEARS. Syracuse isn't a coach killer, Robinson was a Syracuse killer.

Since: Aug 23, 2008
Posted on: September 9, 2008 5:21 pm

Deep thoughts on a football Saturday

SU is a coach killer?  That makes no sense.  SU had 15 straight winning seasons from Between 1987 and 2004, SU only had 1 losing season.  One bad coaching hire and a few disastrous years, and now SU is a coach killer?  NOPE.  It's been proven that you can win at SU.  It's been done many times before, as SU is a tradition rich school with a winning history.  You media clowns are so quick to hype up a school like Rutgers who sucked for like 500 years, as some sleeping giant.  Then when they finally have 1 good year, you all wet your pants.  But everyone seems so quick to dump on SU these days.

Don't worry.  Soon the Dome will once again be the loudest college football stadium, 'Cuse will be battling for Big East titles and BCS berths, and you media clowns can say you missed the boat again.  Kiss my orange butt!

Since: Sep 9, 2008
Posted on: September 9, 2008 11:00 am

Deep thoughts on a football Saturday


I'm amazed at the incredible lack of knowledge, research, and responsibility you've taken with your comment about Syracuse being a "coach killer".  3 coaches in the last 27 years would suggest the diametric opposite of your assertion.  I look forward to seeing what type of man you are and if you will apologize for your irresponsible "journalism".

Since: Sep 9, 2008
Posted on: September 9, 2008 9:34 am

Deep thoughts on a football Saturday

Syracuse a coach killer? Are you kidding me? Geez make one bad coaching hire and eveyone forgets 100 years of football tradition. If anything, the fact that the administration has stuck with the coach for so long means the next guy is going to get a fair chance to succeed.


Since: Sep 8, 2008
Posted on: September 8, 2008 10:48 pm

Deep thoughts on a football Saturday

how is the syracuse job a coach killer ?  

since the year 2000 nebraska has had 4 head coaches -  notre  dame 3   really 5 counting george oleary and an interm coach - miami 3 stanford 4 coaches - 

 syracuse has had 2 in that time span and has had 3 since the early 1980's , only 1 of those coaches have been fired and is now doing well in the nfl , and the other resigned to go to the nfl , doesnt sound like a program that is killing coaches


get your facts checked before making dumb remarks like that


Since: Sep 8, 2008
Posted on: September 8, 2008 9:47 pm

Deep thoughts on a football Saturday

"Coach Killer?" You're a bag of douche.

Since: Sep 29, 2007
Posted on: September 8, 2008 8:39 pm

Deep thoughts on a football Saturday

I was going to say what everyone else said, so I'll just say this:  Dodd, you are complete and utter assclown.  There is absolutely no reason whatsoever to think that a different coach won't be successful at SU.

Since: Sep 8, 2008
Posted on: September 8, 2008 8:22 pm

Deep thoughts on a football Saturday

Do your homework Dennis.  Since when does five coaches in 60 years qualify a place as a coaching graveyard?  Paul Pasqualoni - 14 years.  Dick Mac Pherson - 10 years before leaving for the NFL.  Ben Schwartzwalder - 25 years.  Syracuse may be down now but some young, energetic coach - Turner Gill, Dave Clawson, Doug Marrone - will return the Big East school with the most football tradition back to a consistent Top 25 program.

Since: Sep 8, 2008
Posted on: September 8, 2008 6:09 pm

Deep thoughts on a football Saturday

Syracuse has had 3 coaches in 27 years - hardly a "coach killer."  The fans, players and most of the University are just begging for someone like Holtz to come in and revitalize a once proud traditional power.  Do some research before you just throw out some inane comment. 

Since: Sep 8, 2008
Posted on: September 8, 2008 12:54 pm

Deep thoughts on a football Saturday

Please explain the stupid comment that Syracuse is a coach killer. Admittedly Greg Robinson was a catastrophic choice and the debacle that the program has become can be laid squarely at the feet of Daryl Gross. The season GROB's arrival Syracuse had tied for the conference title. So if you're going to pin the totality of the program on the last four seasons you are a moron.

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