Tag:LaMichael James
Posted on: November 5, 2010 1:30 pm
 

Kenjon Barner to play vs. Washington

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

The "as if Oregon needed another weapon" lead-in is so obvious in a story like this it ought to be avoided, but Oregon has so many weapons it's worrying to think what they might do with them if we go with a different one, so: As if Oregon needed another weapon, Kenjon Barner is back to full strength :
Nearly a month [after his injury vs. Washington State ], after Barner took and passed the required post-concussion tests, he is expected to play again for the first time since the injury when No. 1-ranked Oregon meets Washington in a 12:30 p.m. game, Saturday in Autzen Stadium ...

Barner said when he steps between the lines, he will play hard, fast and not spend a nano-second worried about the possibility of injury.

“You can’t think about that come gametime,” he said. “If you’re thinking about that, that’s all you’re going to be focused on. And that would affect the way I would play.”
Not that the Huskies -- blitzed 41-0 by Stanford in Seattle just last week -- had much hope of escaping Autzen with a victory in the first place, but having a healthy Barner at Chip Kelly 's disposal clearly won't help matters. All Barner has done this season in his limited time behind LaMichael James is rush for 147 yards on just 14 carries against New Mexico , return a punt for a touchdown against Tennessee , average better than 108 all-purpose yards in his six games and 11.4 yards per touch.

But none of that honestly matters much for Washington, who was always going to be Duck roadkill. The bigger story of Barner's return -- and his shaking off the rust he may claim not to have, but likely does, given that he admits to being "nervous" about playing again -- is what it means down the road for the Ducks' tests against Arizona and at Cal and Oregon State .

And what it means is that the chances of Oregon being thrown off stride, say, by a James' injury or an off-night for a slot receiver or Kelly not being able to use that one play where he really needs Barner -- and losing some place between here and Glendale -- are worse than ever.


Posted on: October 31, 2010 2:28 am
 

What I Learned from the Pac-10 (Oct. 30)

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

1. Oregon is much more likely to make it to Glendale than not. The Ducks aren't home free just yet; that season-ending trip to Corvallis to face Mike Riley 's Oregon State team won't be easy, and God only knows what kind of Cal squad Oregon will face when they travel to Berkeley Nov. 13. But after the Ducks dismantled USC 53-32 in Los Angeles Saturday night, neither of those hypothetical stumbling blocks (to say nothing of, say, Arizona 's chances to win at Autzen Stadium) look nearly imposing enough to expect Oregon's season to end anywhere but the BCS national championship game.

The Trojans had a ton of factors working in their favor: a bye week to prepare, a red-hot quarterback, an unusually-lively Coliseum, and most of all the desperation that comes with knowing that this was their best shot at being a team that mattered this season. They called it their bowl game for a reason. And it was enough to propel them to a 32-29 lead after two shirt-field touchdowns early in the third quarter, just as Stanford had used an early burst to lead in Autzen. But just as Ducks had done against the Cardinal, the array of weapons at Chip Kelly 's disposal -- LaMichael James in the running game, Jeff Maehl and Lavasier Tuinei in the passing game, Darron Thomas in both -- simply overwhelmed their ever-weakening opposition as the second half progressed. Oregon scored the final 24 points of the game and finished with 597 total yards.

They are relentless, they are operating on all their proverbial cylinders, and even their allegedly soft defense -- always worse for the statistical wear thanks to the offense's hyperdrive tempo -- held the previously scorching Matt Barkley to a mediocre 5 yards per pass attempt and USC under 400 total yards for the game. Unless they badly underperform the same night the Golden Bears or Beavers stupendously overperform, they will become the first Pac-10 team other than their Saturday victims to play for a crystal football.

2. USC isn't going to be anything more than a middle-of-the-pack Pac-10 team until they learn how to stop the run. The charge frequently leveled at Monte Kiffin as his defenses first at Tennessee and now Southern Cal have struggled is that the 70-year-old defensive coordinator isn't sharp enough any more to adjust to the modern spread offense.

There might be something to that, given the 588 yards given up to Hawaii in USC's season opener and the 597 yielded to the Ducks. But the Trojans' biggest problem is a lot simpler: they're getting crushed up front. LaMichael James went for 239 rushing yards and the Ducks for 311 as a team. Stanford ? 193 yards, 5.4 a carry. Washington ? 225 yards, 6.6 a carry. That's not a matter of Kiffin's schemes or a misunderstanding of the spread; that's a matter of the Trojan defensive front just getting shoved around. Until they mature and start clogging up lanes in the middle of the field, USC's defense is going to continue to flail no matter what Kiffin does.

3. Cal isn't the only Jekyll-and-Hyde outfit in this conference. Speaking of Washington, the last time we saw them at home they were edging a good Oregon State team in overtime. While not many people were expecting them to upset Stanford, to get throttled 41-0 in Husky Stadium is an embarrassment ... and baffling considering how well they played just two weeks ago. With road trips to Oregon and Cal still to come and the Huskies wallowing at 3-5 overall, it doesn't look like this is the year just yet for Steve Sarkisian to break his team's eight-year bowl drought.

Arizona State , meanwhile, rebounded from losing to 33 points at Cal to shut out previously-improving Washington State 42-0 .

4. But Cal is still the original and most committed Jekyll-and-Hyde outfit. The Golden Bears trailed by 28 at halftime and lost 35-7 at Oregon State, as Kevin Riley had to be helped off the field in the first quarter. One of Cal's eight games have been decided by fewer than 21 points.

5. UCLA is as much a mess as ever. The Bruins looked to have their ship righted when they went on the road to upset Texas , but it turns out going on the road to upset Texas isn't that big a deal. And in the meantime, they've been humilated by Cal and Oregon and could have been by Matt Scott (319 yards, 71 rushing) and Arizona. A series of Wildcat failures in the red zone kept UCLA close, but getting outgained by 284 total yards and rushing for just 2.5 yards a carry at home is a sign that goes well beyond worrying. Another home loss this coming weekend, to Oregon State, and Rick Neuheisel will be staring a four- or even three-win season in the face.



Posted on: October 24, 2010 2:44 am
 

What I Learned from the Pac-10 (Oct. 23)

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

All the real fireworks in the current Pac-10 and future Pac-12 came midweek with the announcement of the conference's divisional split midweek. Two teams -- USC and Oregon State -- enjoyed a bye week, and none of the four conference games were closer than 16 points at halftime. But there were still some important lessons to learn, starting with ...

1. Cal is the most Jekyll-and-Hyde team in the country. The last time we checked in with the Bears, they were getting annihilated by USC in the L.A. Coliseum, giving up six first-half touchdowns and trailing 42-0 at the break. That was a week after they'd throttled UCLA and the Bruins's pistol attack 35-7 . That result came two dates on the schedule after they'd been shredded by Nevada 's pistol attack 52-31 .

So even though Arizona State had been an excellent road team entering their visit to Berkeley, losing to Wisconsin by a point and downing Washington in Seattle, you could see this coming: 40 straight Cal points after a game-opening Sun Devil field goal, zero offensive touchdowns allowed, a 137-yard advantage in total offense, and a 50-17 rout to move the Bears to 4-3 overall and 2-2 in the Pac-10. Beleaguered quarterback Kevin Riley -- whose ups and downs mirror the team's closely enough that he ought to be named the team mascot -- went 19-of-29 for 240 yards and no interceptions.

Cal has played one close game, their 10-9 loss at Arizona . The average margin of victory in the other six, for either Cal or their opponent? 32 points.

2. No one's touching Oregon at Autzen Stadium. What this observer took away first and foremost from the Ducks' 60-13 evisceration of UCLA on Thursday night was just how comfortable Chip Kelly 's team appeared. Even playing at the fastest tempo seen in college football today (and maybe ever?), the Oregon offense never seemed confused, never seemed out-of-control, never even seemed to break a sweat. They churned up and down the field with the ease of a swimmer doing laps at the Y. The Bruins never stood a chance.

So does anyone remaining on Oregon's schedule? Most certainly, but only the teams that get the advantage of hosting the Ducks, where the travel and unfamiliar stadium and hostile crowd can at least start to bump the Ducks out of the lethal comfort zone we saw Thursday. Remember: Oregon's only played one team that is not Washington State on the road thus far, Arizona State, and that team held the Ducks to 405 yards and outgained them by nearly 200.

3. If anything happens to that Cam Newton guy, LaMichael James will make for a highly worthy Heisman Trophy winner. James's stats against UCLA don't jump off the page by Heisman standards -- 20 carries, 123 yards, 2 touchdowns -- but those watching the game saw James show off his usual breathtaking combination of speed, power, agility, and mad receiving skills. No tailback in the country is playing better.

4. Nick Foles doesn't have to rush back. The Arizona starting quarterback missed the Wildcats' 44-14 beatdown of Washington with a dislocated kneecap and his return date is still TBA. But the performance of Matt Scott -- the same returning starter who Foles usurped for the job in 2009 -- suggests that there's no need for Foles to rush his timetable. Scott hit 18 of his 22 passes for 233 yards, collecting two touchdowns and going without an interception. He even showed off the legs that made him a starter in the first place, running for 64 yards on 8 carries.

Given that the schedule offers Arizona a date at reeling UCLA this week, if Foles can just get healthy by the Nov. 6 trip to Stanford , that ought to be good enough.

5. Washington State is making progress, however incremental. No, the Cougars' 38-28 loss to Stanford wasn't as close as the final score indicated; Wazzu trailed 38-14 in the final quarter and scored two late touchdowns to make things a bit more cosmetic. But facts are facts: the 10-point final margin is the closest Paul Wulff has come to a Pac-10 opponent in his three seasons, and that he managed it on the road against the No. 12 team in the country is all the more encouraging.


Posted on: October 20, 2010 6:15 pm
 

Heisman race about forgiving, forgetting

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

Check out any of this week's multitude of Internet Heisman polls you like, CBS Sports's included , and you'll notice they'll have two things in common: 1. Cameron Newton 2. LaMichael James . Sure, James occasionally comes in a narrow third to Boise State quarterback Kellen Moore, and there's even a few random holdouts declaring someone other than Newton to be the leader, but the consensus is universal that both Newton and James are in the very thick of the Heisman race.

This is significant because both Newton and James, like the polls, have something unfortunate in common: high-profile arrests.

By now, virtually every college football fan knows that while at Florida in 2008, Newton purchased a stolen laptop and tossed it out a window when a police investigation located it in his dorm room. (Those fans and even occasional writers, anyway, who aren't under the frequent misapprehension that Newton stole the computer himself.) Fans outside the west coast may have forgotten in James's blistering start, however, that James was suspended for Oregon 's season-opener after being arrested on three charges stemming from a domestic violence incident.

At the time, many pundits opined that Heisman voters would pass on supporting the candidacy of a player associated in any way with a domestic violence arrest. (James eventually pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor harassment charge and was sentenced to 24 months probation.) Similarly, some writers and even a minority of Auburn fans wondered whether even Newton's tremendous physical talent was worth the risk of recruiting and signing a player tarred as a thief and character risk.

But at midseason, with both players in the midst of brilliant, Heisman-worthy seasons, those concerns appear to be the very furthest thing from the trophy-tracking media's -- and potentially Heisman voters' -- minds. When Newton's past is referenced at all, it seems to be placed within the context of his redemption as charismatic team leader and even selfless community volunteer . (If you watched CBS' broadcast of the Auburn-Arkansas game, you know that Newton aspires to one day open his own day care center .) James's arrest and suspension seems to have become an afterthought as soon as he exploded for his eye-popping 72-yard touchdown run against Tennessee .

As far as this blogger is concerned, this is as it should be. Media members (or Heisman voters) trying to parse what off-field missteps would be worth altering coverage or opinions and which ones wouldn't opens up all kinds of messy ethical dilemmas and value judgments that aren't worth bothering with; if a player is on the field, what happens on the field is (almost always) the only fair criterion for which they should be judged.

But whether you agree with that position or not, the larger, more important lesson to learn from Newton's and James' unambiguous success (and resulting Heisman standing) is that once the on-field exploits are spectacular enough, the off-field mistakes simply aren't going to matter.

In mid-season, with Newton and James providing us fresh highlights and mind-blowing stats on a weekly basis, this seems blatantly obvious -- "analysis" on par with "that Les Miles sure makes some unorthodox decisions" or "maybe Virginia Tech shouldn't have tried playing James Madison five days after Boise." But we'll all do well to remember it come the offseason, when the next Newton or James gets in legal hot water and we're assured this is a major setback for the player's reputation and profile.

The 2010 Heisman race suggests that unless the offense committed is one serious enough to keep him away from his entirely, it simply won't be.

Posted on: October 18, 2010 10:40 pm
Edited on: October 19, 2010 4:37 am
 

Midseason Report: Pac-10

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

The Midseason Report separates the contenders from the pretenders in each conference race, and in the Pac-10, that means cleanly separating its top half from its bottom half ... and wondering if anyone can catch Oregon. Here's what's happened so far and what might happen down the stretch.

1. Oregon (6-0, 3-0) - Jeremiwho Masoli? The Ducks missed the memo that the offseason dismissal of their starting quarterback spelled the end of any national title hopes, blazing to six straight wins by an average margin of 38 points. That’s been good enough to make them the consensus No. 1 team in the polls entering the second half of the season, and for Chip Kelly to confirm (again) that no one has a better offensive mind or more talent for coaching dual-threat quarterbacks. First-year starter Darron Thomas has racked up more than 1,400 total yards in leading the Ducks to the current No. 1 ranking in total offense. But even Thomas can go overlooked next to tailback and Heisman candidate LaMichael James , the nation’s No. 1 rusher at 170 yards per-game. The Duck onslaught has overwhelmed every team unlucky enough to face it so far, including previously undefeated Stanford , who gave up 49 points in the final three quarters and lost by three full scores at Autzen. Don’t pencil the Ducks in for a national title bout just yet, though; they were outgained by 226 yards in their only serious road test to date, at Arizona State , and still have to visit three dangerous teams in USC , Cal , and Oregon State . Where the Pac-10 title is concerned, however, it’ll be a shocker if it winds up anywhere but Eugene.

2. Stanford (5-1, 2-1) - Not many coaches can claim to have done a better job over the past few seasons than Kelly, but Jim Harbaugh might be one of them. His stunning reclamation project in Palo Alto has only picked up speed in 2010 as behind potential No. 1 draft pick Andrew Luck (1,538 passing yards, 16 touchdowns, 65.7 completion percentage), the Cardinal haven’t missed a beat without departed Heisman runner-up Toby Gerhart. UCLA was embarrassed 35-0, Notre Dame bludgeoned 37-14. and USC out-shot 37-35. The 73rd-ranked rush defense could stand to find more consistency, but with Arizona and Oregon State both coming to Stanford Stadium, the Cardinal could nonetheless be favored in their final six games. 10 or even 11 wins are within reach ... though with Oregon holding the head-to-head tiebreaker, it'll take some major help to reach Pasadena.

3. Arizona (5-1, 2-1)
- The Pac-10 has the Wildcats to thank for the conference’s most impressive non-league win to-date, the wire-to-wire 34-27 win over otherwise-undefeated No. 13 Iowa . But Arizona hasn’t been nearly as impressive in conference play, escaping Cal 10-9 on a last-minute touchdown, losing at home to Oregon State 29-27, and sleepwalking past hapless Washington State 24-7. Quarterback Nick Foles has been outstanding, completing better than 75 percent of his passes and averaging 267 yards a game. But now Foles is due to miss three weeks with a knee injury, and the ‘Cats haven’t been able to get key senior running back Nic Grigsby (340 yards this season) on track. With road trips to Stanford and Oregon still to come, Mike Stoops will have to recapture the magic of the Iowa game in a hurry to keep the Wildcats a factor in the Pac-10 race.

4. Oregon State (3-3, 2-1) - Give the Beavers this: no one in the country has played a more difficult schedule. There’s no shame in losing competitive games on the road at top-5 outfits like TCU and Boise State, and not a whole lot in being a two-point conversion away from a thrilling win at Washington . But there’s not that much respect in being only .500, either, even with a big road win at Arizona. And with James Rodgers out for the season, it’s worth asking if the Beavers have enough offensive firepower to hang with anyone in their brutal USC-Stanford-Oregon closing stretch. Still, Mike Riley 's teams usually improve as the season progresses, and quarterback Ryan Katz has shown flashes of brilliance (most notably in the 390 yard upset in Tucson). The Beavers will still have their say in how the Pac-10 ultimately plays out. They always do.

5. USC (5-2, 2-2) - Maybe we should include Washington in this space. After all, the Huskies both beat the Trojans at the Coliseum and stand a half-game ahead of USC in the Pac-10 standings. But it’s hard to take a team that’s lost to a flatly terrible BYU squad and Arizona State (at home!) all that seriously. The Trojans, on the other hand, are two field goals -- one Washington’s, one Stanford’s, both on the final play of the game -- away from being undefeated. And the way Matt Barkley is throwing the ball these days (742 yards, 8 touchdowns, no interceptions the last two weeks) and freshman Robert Woods is catching it (19 receptions, 340 yards, 5 touchdowns those same two weeks), it’s safe to call Lane Kiffin ’s team the one in the Pac-10 that no one would want to play. Just ask Cal. Then again: how dangerous can the Trojans really be if Monte Kiffin ’s 90th-ranked defense doesn’t stop allowing the occasional 500-yard game? USC could upset Oregon in L.A. and enter the final week of the season in contention for a championship, or they could be mathematically eliminated in another two weeks. Anything is possible here.

Prediction: Sorry, Ducks fans: the guess here is that Oregon won't become the first Pac-10 team other than USC to advance to the BCS championship game. Even the best offenses can have off-games on the road, and that defense -- which was gouged for 600 yards in Tempe and another 518 against Stanford -- isn't going to be able to take up the slack. Whether at Los Angeles, Berkeley, or Corvallis, Oregon is due to trip up somewhere.

But they won't trip up twice, which means that they'll still be able to settle for a second straight Pac-10 championship and Rose Bowl berth. Stanford will crack double-digit wins, but it won't be enough, and perhaps maybe not even enough to push the race into the season's final week.

Everyone else? Three conference losses at the minimum, though USC will end the season with a ton of momentum and the consensus honor of being the league's third-best team.



Posted on: October 8, 2010 4:40 pm
 

Insane Predictions: Week 6

Posted by the College Football Blog Staff

Every season, every month, every week, there are several outcomes and achievements that, frankly, nobody operating within reason would ever predict. Who could have predicted Nebraska would beat Florida for the 1995 title by 38 points, or that Boise State would pull off three late trick plays to knock off Oklahoma in the 2007 Fiesta Bowl, or that Les Miles wouldn't be the coach that screwed up the endgame the worst during Tennessee-LSU? Nobody... until now. We're going to try capture that lightning in a bottle by making similarly absurd predictions every week. Are they at all likely to come true? No. Do we even believe the words we're writing? No. But if we make even one correct call on these, we will never stop gloating. Ever.

Highly Unlikely

Utah punishes every single "win-go-up, lose-go-down" poll voter by dropping their night game at Iowa State, 31-20. The previously comatose Cyclone defense comes to life against the Utes, sacking Jordan Wynn four times and picking him off twice. The exasperated Utah coach, Kyle Whittingham, will blame the pollsters for Utah's upset loss, saying "I wasn't the one telling my guys they were the tenth best team in the [censored] nation." -- Adam Jacobi

Washington State slows down and upsets Oregon in Martin Stadium, claiming their first conference win with a 24-0 victory over the Ducks. The shutout will be thanks to the defense who, despite starting the day ranked 118th in the nation in yards allowed per game (509.8), shut down the best offense in nation by simply putting 11 linebackers on the field at all times. -- Chip Patterson

Michigan's defense actually shows up to play on Saturday, allowing Denard Robinson to see even more snaps behind center.  The end result is a 600-yard performance from Robinson as the Wolverines coast to a surprisingly easy 42-17 victory over Michigan State, giving Denard an even firmer grasp on the Heisman Trophy. -- Tom Fornelli

Severely Unlikely

Michigan and Michigan State's defenses completely shut each other down in a 3-2 Spartan victory in the Big House.  Denard Robinson attempts to run 18 times, but is only held to 14 yards.  Braylon Edwards gets behind the wheel and drives the Spartans back to East Lansing, hitting every bar on the way. At 73 mph. -- Chip Patterson

A week after having a huge day in a losing effort against Michigan, Indiana's Ben Chappell does even more damage in the Horseshoe.  Chappell picks the Ohio State secondary apart for 520 yards and 5 touchdowns. Terrelle Pryor's leg injury reappears and the Buckeyes offense has absolutely no answer. The Hoosiers shock the world, picking up what would be considered the biggest win in the program's history.  Final score: Indiana 45, Ohio State 31. -- Tom Fornelli

Oregon pours it on hapless Washington State for the full 60 minutes and becomes the first I-A team to hit the century mark since Houston beat Tulsa 100-6 in 1968. LaMichael James reclaims the top spot in Heisman consideration with 532 yards rushing and 10 touchdowns. Oregon cruises, 113-0. -- Adam Jacobi

Utterly Preposterous

The game between LSU and Florida is an all-time epic performance that will be talked about 50 years from now.  The game goes back and forth as the offenses take turns destroying the defenses, and the defenses respond in kind.  Finally, in the fourth quarter Jordan Jefferson takes the field with LSU down 24-20 and two minutes left on the clock.  He has yet to throw an interception as the Tigers begin their drive.  They enter get inside the Florida 20-yard line as the clock goes under the minute mark.  Les Miles stands on the sidelines with no worries in the world.  Amazingly, he still has all three of his timeouts left.  He uses them well, and Gary Crowton calls the perfect plays as Jefferson hits Terrence Toliver for the game winning touchdown with 12 seconds left.  LSU wins 27-24. -- Tom Fornelli

In a scene reminiscent of the realistic football documentary Varsity Blues, the Texas Tech players rise up in mutiny against head coach Tommy Tuberville at halftime as they trail Baylor 21-3. Red Raiders QB Taylor Potts makes one call on his cell phone, and five minutes into the third quarter, Mike Leach parachutes onto the field, delighting the Cotton Bowl crowd. Leach, seeing no sheds present at the game, has WR Adam James locked in a bathroom stall for the rest of the game. Leach re-installs the spread, Baylor's defense is overmatched, and the Red Raiders prevail 34-31. -- Adam Jacobi

South Carolina upsets Alabama 28-24 after Mark Ingram has his 5th fumble of the game on the goal line in the final seconds. Trent Richardson, who had 250 yards rushing in the game, erupts with rage that he did not get a chance to win the game himself.  In the locker room, things get heated. Our own Tom Fornelli emerges from Richardson's locker and pins Ingram's arms behind his back, allowing Richardson to head-butt Ingram and knock the Heisman Trophy winner to the ground. Alabama coach Nick Saban suspends Ingram for the confrontation, claiming "the kid showed no fight." -- Chip Patterson

Posted on: October 6, 2010 2:26 pm
 

Pac-10 starting games earlier? Yes, please

Posted by Tom Fornelli

I watch a lot of college football every year.  Some people have always liked to use their Saturdays to go outside or spend time with their families, but I've always preferred watching college kids beat each other up on the gridiron.  I live in Chicago, after all, and it gets cold outside in the fall, I don't want to go out there.

I prefer the comforts of my recliner and the television.  It's because of all this college football that I watch that I'm comfortable saying that I know quite a bit about teams from all over the country, but I'll openly admit that I know less about the teams on the west coast of the country than I do teams in the east, midwest and south.  Some would tell you that this is because of the east-coast bias that exists in the media that largely ignores the other side of the country.

I've no doubt that this plays a part of it, but there's always been a bigger reason for me.  On any given Saturday I'll watch 12 hours of college football, starting at 11am local time through the end of the primetime games at 11pm.  Unfortunately for me, though I would be interested in watching more Pac-10 games, by the time those games kick off I'm a bit worn down.

LaMichael James is hard enough to keep your eyes on while he's flying down the field, when you're eyes are half-closed and glazed over, it's nearly impossible.

Which is why I'm so happy to hear that the Pac-10 is considering earlier start times for their games, which will allow the rest of the country to tune in a bit more.  Last weekend's game between Oregon and Stanford was originally scheduled to start at 8pm PST but was moved up three hours so ABC could feature it as it's primetime game of the week.

Because of the decision, a lot of people who ordinarily wouldn't have had a chance to see either team were able to tune in and see an Oregon offense that is, as Will Brinson put it, like crack on meth.  You'll notice that on Sunday Oregon had leapt Boise State in both the AP and Coaches poll to move in to the top three.

Don't think for a second that having this game seen by the entire country didn't play a role in that.  Before Saturday's game, most people on the east coast had seen Boise State play more often than they had Oregon.

Moving game times to earlier in the day would help the Pac-10 in a lot of areas.  It would give the conference greater exposure throughout the country, which would not only help in possible revenue once the conference launches its own network, but it'll also help the programs expand their recruiting bases to states they don't normally have any access to.

Not to mention that having more games seen nationally would also help get more BCS bowl bids, which in turn lead to more cash money.

Also, there's really no disadvantage to the Pac-10 to do this.  It's not like moving games to noon local time would affect attendance at the home stadiums.  Noon start times work just fine on the east coast, as do 11 am starts throughout the central time zone.

There is a lot of good football being played in the Pac-10 right now, something folks on the west coast already know, but it's about time the rest of the country was given a chance to figure this out as well.
Posted on: October 2, 2010 11:43 pm
Edited on: October 2, 2010 11:44 pm
 

Oregon overcomes deficit to top Stanford 52-31

Posted by Chip Patterson

For a quarter, the Oregon offense was caught with no answers for an inspired Stanford defensive unit.  The Ducks trailed 21-3 at the end of the first 15 minutes of play before things got clicking for the Ducks.  The Cardinal turned turnovers into point, capitalizing on an early interception and fumble recovery to jump out to the early lead.  But once Darron Thomas and LaMichael James got comfortable, the tables turned for Stanford.

Thomas was 20 for 29 for 238 yards and three touchdowns to lead the Ducks, with James adding 257 yards on the ground and three touchdowns himself.  Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck looked sharp when he had a lead to work with, but once they fell behind began to make some mental mistakes and force throws.  Luck remains one of the best quarterbacks in college football, the Oregon defense deserves a lot of credit for their halftime adjustments.  

The Ducks have made a statement to the nation and to themselves, with Stanford behind them it is not unreasonable to start considering the possibilities of Oregon becoming a player in the national title discussion.

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