Tag:Mark Ingram
Posted on: November 9, 2010 2:25 pm
 

Maxwell semifinalists released; where are RBs?

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

There has been one good piece of news to come out over the past 24 hours for Cam Newton : the Maxwell Football Club named him one of 16 semifinalists for the Maxwell Award , the organization's honor for the best player in college football. And though Newton has accumulated the stats and highlight reels of an All-American running back this season, it's perhaps for the best for him he doesn't actually play the position. That's the way it looks from the complete list of semifinalists:

WR Justin Blackmon , Oklahoma State, So.
WR Ryan Broyles, Oklahoma, Jr.
QB Andy Dalton , TCU, Sr.
QB Robert Griffin III , Baylor, So.
RB Kendall Hunter , Oklahoma State, Sr.
RB LaMichael James , Oregon, So.
QB Colin Kaepernick , Nevada, Sr.
QB Andrew Luck , Stanford, So.
QB Ryan Mallett , Arkansas, Jr.
QB Taylor Martinez , Nebraska, Fr.
QB Kellen Moore , Boise State, Jr.
QB Cam Newton , Auburn, Jr.
QB Terrelle Pryor , Ohio State, Jr.
QB Denard Robinson , Michigan, So.
QB Ricky Stanzi , Iowa, Sr.
QB Tyrod Taylor , Virginia Tech, Sr.

All right, so it's also a little odd that none of the top 16 players in the nation by the Maxwell's estimation happen to play defense. But it's nothing unusual for defenders to get snubbed in the national Player of the Year talk, and since the Maxwell Club also hands out the Bednarik Award to the nation's best defensive player, the Maxwell itself appears to be a de facto offensive players-only honor; even the great Ndamokung Suh didn't crack the semifinalists list last season .

So the much bigger surprise is that among a list of the nation's top 16 offensive players, only two running backs, Hunter and James, make the cut next to two wide receivers and a whopping 12 quarterbacks. Since when has the the second-most high-profile position on the football field been this devoid of stars?

Since 2010, apparently. Last year's Maxwell semifinalist list included seven tailbacks, including a pair of Heisman finalists in Toby Gerhart and Mark Ingram and several who returned to college football for this 2010 season: Ingram, Noel Devine , Jacquizz Rodgers , Dion Lewis . Unfortunately for those four players, the season hasn't played out as expected for any of them; not one currently ranks among even the top 30 rushers in the nation at present, with Rodgers' 803 yards (good for 33rd) the best year to-date of the bunch.

Why the sudden downturn in the fortunes of the nation's top tailbacks? Some of it is probably a simple fluke. But some of it is the continuing rise of the spread offense, which revolves around the all-purpose quarterback at the expense of pounding along with the traditional bruising tailback. Auburn , Nevada , Michigan , TCU , Baylor -- these are all some of the most explosive offenses in the country, and all five begin with a mobile QB. It's no wonder all five placed their quarterbacks on the list above despite the presence of top rushers like Nevada's Vai Taua , Baylor's Jay Finley , and TCU's Ed Wesley . This year's top pro-style attacks, meanwhile, are all quarterback-dominated as well: Stanford and Luck, Arkansas and Mallett, Boise and Moore. Offenses like the 2009 Cardinal and Tide attacks that turned Gerhart and Ingram into superstars just aren't out there this year.

They'll probably be back next year. But that doesn't mean they'll be back in the same numbers we've seen in the past; as long as the spread remains as in vogue as it is today, the kind of bludgeoning workhorse tailback that makes award lists is going to stay an increasingly endangered species.
Posted on: October 27, 2010 2:39 pm
 

Ingram would vote for Cam Newton..or would he?

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Auburn quarterback Cam Newton is far and away the leader in the Heisman race so far this season.  He has singlehandedly put the entire Auburn offense on his back this season and carried it to an 8-0 start and the top spot in the BCS polls.  Honestly, if you have a Heisman vote right now and you don't plan on giving it to Newton, you aren't doing it because you don't think he deserves it, you're only voting for somebody else to be different.

But what if you're the latest Heisman winner, and you happen to play for Auburn's biggest rival?  Is that reason enough not to vote for Newton to win the Heisman?  Possibly, but Mark Ingram went on The Dan Patrick Show on Wednesday and said he'd throw a vote Newton's way if he feels he deserves it.

"We'll see what happens," Ingram said. "We'll see how the rest of the season plays out and who keeps playing the best football. They're definitely playing the best football out of everybody right now.

"If he's the best and has been the best so far, I wouldn't have no problem. I'm a real person and I can't hate on the man."

That's right, Ingram "wouldn't have no problem" voting for Newton.  Could it be that Ingram is intentionally using the double-negative to throw off the scent, and that he has no intention of voting for Newton?  Now, as we've seen in the past, the proper usage of grammar and syntax can be a problem for members of the Alabama football team .  It's very possible that Nick Saban 's misuse of the english language has transferred to the rest of the team like some unstoppable virus, hell bent on creating run-on sentences and leaving participles dangling.

But, no, I believe Ingram is too smart for that.  He's obviously just trying to fool us all into thinking he supports Newton's campaign.  Well he hasn't fooled this blogger!

I'm on to you, Ingram.

Hat tip: CFT
Posted on: October 22, 2010 4:15 pm
 

Fornelli's Insane Predictions: Week 8

Posted by Tom Fornelli

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  South Carolina would fail to score a point in the second half against Kentucky a week after knocking off the Tide? 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

The Tennessee Volunteers shock the world when they pull off an upset of the Alabama Crimson Tide in Knoxville on Saturday night.  In his first start, Tyler Bray has far from an outstanding day, throwing for only 78 yards and a touchdown, but the Alabama offense can't stop tripping over its own feet.  Greg McElroy fumbles three times, and throws four interceptions.  To make matters worse, McElroy, Mark Ingram, Trent Richardson and Julio Jones all have to leave the game with devastating knee injuries.  After the game a shocked Nick Saban points out that "they just don't make ligaments like they used to."

Severly Unlikely

It's halftime in Miami, and the North Carolina Tar Heels look to be en route to a huge win against the Hurricanes.  They have a 24-0 lead thanks to four first half interceptions by Jacory Harris, and spirits in the locker room are high.  Then a phone rings.  Butch Davis answers it to be told that the NCAA has just suspended everybody on his team, and that he'll have to forfeit the game.  Instead Davis recruits the North Carolina band to fill in for his team, and amazingly, they hold on to win the game 27-23.  Three weeks later the loss is vacated when it's discovered that the tuba player accepted money from the New York Philharmonic.

Completely Ludicrous

Following Iowa 's narrow 27-24 victory over Wisconsin on Saturday, the two teams meet on the field to shake hands.  Bret Bielema goes out of his way to find Ricky Stanzi and congratulate him on his three-touchdown game.  Upon finding Stanzi, the quarterback tells Bielema, "Thanks.  That's how real Americans play the game."  This infuriates Bielema, who views his brand of pounding large young men into the trenches until they drop dead to be the real American football.  The two begin fighting, and have to be separated.  Though after the dustup, still feeling patriotic, Stanzi pulls the American flag out from under his jersey -- next to his heart, of course -- and puts it on a sharpened flag pole he keeps in his sock.  He then hurls the flag forty yards through the air like a javelin where it goes through Bielema's chest and plants into the ground.  Stanzi is carried off the field to chants of "USA!  USA!  USA!"
Posted on: October 13, 2010 12:52 pm
 

Jerrell Powe knows how to stop Alabama

Posted by Tom Fornelli

Man, you lose one game in two years and suddenly everybody thinks they know how to beat you.

Alabama is hoping to rebound from its loss against South Carolina last weekend when they host Ole Miss this weekend, but according to the Rebels' defensive tackle Jerrell Powe, it isn't going to happen.  You see, Mr. Powe watched the game against South Carolina and now he knows the secret formula for beating the Crimson Tide.

"I think they got exposed, you know what I mean? Showed that they're a one-dimensional team, that they run the ball really well, and I think South Carolina did a good job of stuffing the run and they really couldn't get nothing going after they got stopped," Powe said. "I think they tried to come out and do the same thing they did against Arkansas - tried to wear South Carolina down with the run - but I think South Carolina did a great job of persevering through the whole game."

Wow, Powe cracked the secret code.  Who knew Alabama was a running team?  I always thought that Mark Ingram won the Heisman last season for his tremendous pass-blocking skills.

Listen, figuring out that stuffing Alabama's ground game is the key to beating them isn't a revelation.  It's actually doing it that matters, which is something that nobody had done until the Gamecocks did it last week.  So you'll have to excuse me if I don't have much faith in Powe and the Rebels this weekend, as last I checked the Rebel defense was 103rd in the nation allowing 32.6 points per game. 

And those games include losses to Jacksonville State and Vanderbilt.   Something tells me that if you can't stop Jacksonville State at home, you aren't going to be able to beat Alabama in Tuscaloosa.
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 8, 2010 3:19 pm
Edited on: October 8, 2010 5:15 pm
 

The Saturday Meal Plan: Week 6

Posted by Tom Fornelli

The Saturday Meal Plan is a helpful guide put together for you to maximize the results of your college football diet.  Just enough to leave you feeling full, but not so much you spend your entire Sunday in the bathroom.

Breakfast

Main Course - #2 Ohio State vs. Indiana - Noon - ESPN

You know what the real problem is with the ACC and Big East being so awful/mediocre this year?  It really leaves the early menu of games leaving a lot to be desired.  I mean, I have Ohio State and Indiana as the morning's best option.

Think about that for a second.  Ohio State and Indiana.  A game which hasn't seen the Hoosiers get within more than 19 points of the Buckeyes in every meeting since 2002 -- though the teams didn't meet in 2007 or 2008.  The good news for Indiana is that the 19-point loss came last season, with Ben Chappell at quarterback.

The Hoosiers offense has been very impressive this season, but the Buckeyes will be by far their biggest test six weeks into the year.  Considering that we can't be sure just how healthy Terrelle Pryor is, and the struggles the Buckeyes had in Champaign last week, this game could prove to be more interesting than you'd think.

Side Orders: Should that game go the blowout route, your other options Saturday morning would be the ACC fare of North Carolina State and Boston College.   One is a team looking to rebound from its first loss, the other is a team that is having its three quarterbacks pick a number between 1-10 to see who gets to start.  If you prefer something else, you can watch Georgia and Tennessee fight to see which school's season is more far gone than the other.  It's a must win for Mark Richt, because a loss to Tennessee at home would only send him to the hospital with third-degree burns on his backside.

Lunch

Main Course - #19 South Carolina vs #1 Alabama - 3:30pm - CBS

If there's one thing I think we can all be certain at this point of the college football season it's that Alabama is the best team in the country.  There's a bit of a gap between them and Ohio State and Oregon, but after the Ducks, things drop off quite a bit.  That being said, going in to Columbia to take on the Gamecocks shouldn't be a cakewalk for the Tide.

What I think will be the key to this one is if Marcus Lattimore can do anything against the Alabama defense.  While the Alabama defense is barely giving up nine points a game, they are allowing an average of 101 yards per game on the ground. 

Though even if the Gamecocks do get a ground game going, they still have to stop Mark Ingram and Trent Richardson, which no one has done to this point ('Bama is averaging 230 yards a game rushing).  Considering the Gamecocks allow 128.3 yards a contest on the ground, I'm not sure they're up for the challenge either.

Side Orders:
Listen, if people are taking this Michigan/Michigan State game so seriously that they're willing to die in order to see it, maybe you can take a few hours of your Saturday and do the same.  There is never a bad time to watch Denard Robinson play football, as he is without question the most dangerous one-man show in the sport right now.  If that's not good enough for you, check out Arkansas and Texas A&M.   One team has a quarterback who lives up to the hype, and the other has a quarterback who lives up to the hype on one series and then proceeds to get that hype lodged in his throat, suffocating himself and his team.  See if you can tell which one is which.

Dinner

Main Course - #14 Florida vs. #12 LSU - 7:30pm - ESPN

This game will be interesting for plenty of reasons, but perhaps none more so than the battles between the fans in the seats.  Watch as LSU and Florida fans argue about which team's offensive coordinator is going to drive some student to the top of the nearest bell tower with a sniper rifle sooner.  Then watch the other fan base tell them that if their offensive coordinator climbed up that same tower he'd only manage to fall out before getting a single shot off.

Then watch both fan bases fall into each other's arms in tears, unified in despair.  Then they'd smile when both agreeing that if it were Les Miles atop that tower, he'd kill 40 people before going to trial and being found not guilty on some technicality.

Side Orders: Though the rivalry between Florida State and Miami has lost some of its luster the last few years, the fact is both teams come into this game ranked and looking to stay on top of their respective divisions in the ACC.  Or you can watch Stanford try to run its win streak over USC to three games in Palo Alto as Ed Orgeron yells incoherently from home thanks to that staph infection in his leg.

Late Night Snack

The Washington Huskies look to build on any momentum they picked up by beating USC on the road last week against an Arizona State team that couldn't headbutt its way to a victory against Oregon State.
Posted on: October 2, 2010 8:37 pm
Edited on: October 2, 2010 11:10 pm
 

Updates from Florabama

Posted by Tom Fornelli

FIRST QUARTER

8:35 - Trey Burton is not Tim Tebow.   Florida had a 4th and goal from the one yard line and went for it.  Burton tried to pull off the jump pass but was picked off in the end zone.  Tide gets the ball back up 3-0 with 2:15 left in the first.

8:39 - It's pretty scary to consider that Trent Richardson is the second running back for Alabama.   He just tore off a 30-yard run to get the Tide into Florida territory.

8:43 - The first quarter comes to an end with Greg McElroy hitting Darius Hanks for an 11-yard gain to the Florida 14-yard line.  So the second quarter will start with the Tide threatening to add to their lead.  Well, unless they call a jump pass.

SECOND QUARTER

8:48 - Mark Ingram does what Mark Ingram's done plenty of times, scoring a touchdown to give Alabama a 10-0 lead with 14:21 left until halftime.  Though Trent Richardson would have gotten there quicker.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8:54 - This is an important drive for the Gators.  While they don't have to get points, they need to move down the field and get some momentum behind them.  If they go three and out and punt, it could be 17-0 really quick.

8:55 And they go three and out, punt , and Julio Jones has a huge punt return to give Alabama the ball at the Florida 40.  This one's threatening to get out of hand for the Gators.

9:00 - Bit of an odd play.  Trent Richardson takes a direct snap, picks up a couple of yards and has the ball ripped out by Ahmad Black.   Julio Jones picks it up and gets a few more yards.  Replays showed that Richardson was down before fumbling, but the officials let it stand.  We'll see if that changes now that Alabama's taken a timeout.

9:03 - The call stands, so Bama's first fumble of the season is a fumble that wasn't actually a fumble.  Got it?

9:05 - Trent Richardson is an absolute beast.  He just ran over Will Hill and the Florida defense to set up a first and goal for the Tide.  Nine minutes left until halftime, and Dennis Dodd doesn't see this ending well for Florida.

9:07 - Mark Ingram finishes what Richardson started and gets his second touchdown of the night.  It's 17-0 Alabama, 7:50 left in the half.

9:10 - While they didn't have to score on their last drive, this one is a must-score for Florida.  If the Gators don't get into the end zone here then this one is already over and it's not even halftime.

9:12 - Good night, Gators.  John Brantley is picked off by Greg Kirkpatrick and Alabama has the ball at the Florida 18-yard line.

9:14 - And just like that it's 24-0 Alabama.  Marquis Maze comes in to run the Wildcat but instead of running, he throws an 18-yard touchdown pass to Michael Williams.

9:20 - On Florida's first drive of the night, they moved the ball down the entire field and the offensive line was pushing Alabama off the ball.  Then Burton threw that jump pass interception.  Since then, Alabama's defense is completely dominating Florida.  Gators just had to punt again.

9:24 - Alabama has a punter?  I did not know that.  He just made his first appearance of the night and unleashed a 26-yard punt, so Florida has a chance to get on the board before halftime.  Though something tells me they won't.

9:27 - The Gators have life!  Brantley hits Carl Moore for 11 yards on a 4th and ten for a first down.  On the next play Jeff Demps picks up nine yards and Florida has the ball at the Alabama 16 with just over a minute left.

9:32 - Chas Henry, filling in for the injured Caleb Sturgis, comes on and kicks a 39-yard field goal for the Gators.  Small moral victories!  The shutout is gone!  It's 24-3 Alabama with 36 seconds left in the first half.

9:35 - Alabama's content to just run out the clock and go to the locker room.  It's 24-3 Alabama and I'm not exactly confident that Florida is going to be able to make a game of this in the second half.

THIRD QUARTER

9:59 - Not a bad start for Florida in the second half, as Brantley hits Burton for a big gain and the Gator offense is already at midfield.  If they can get a touchdown here we might almost have a game.

10:02 - Brantley hits Moore on third down to set up a first and goal from the 5.

10:05 - The Gators have to settle for another field goal.  FIELD GOALS AREN'T GOING TO WIN THIS GAME, URBAN.  It's 24-6 Alabama and no sign of this game getting good anytime soon.

10:11 - Florida forces Alabama to punt, and it's a beauty.  Downed at the one-yard line.  If Florida can stop the Tide seven more times and kick seven more field goals, well,talk about excitement.

10:17 - Well that's a questionable strategy to get back in the game.  Brantley is intercepted by C.J. Mosely and the freshman takes it to the house.  It's 31-6 Alabama.

10:19 - Games like this really make you appreciate the idiocy of Les Miles. 

10:21 - College football needs to institute some kind of mercy rule.  Not to protect the feelings of the young men playing in the games, I don't care about them.  I'm talking about taking mercy on my eyes.

10:24 - Aww, the stinking sideline is ruining John Brantley's interception party.  He was just picked again, this time by Barron, but Barron comes down out of bounds so it doesn't count.

10:26 - On the very next play Brantley decides to just throw a pitch to Jeff Demps away, yelling "Stop this sideline!  Turnover party!"  Unforunately Demps never got the invitation and recovered the fumble.  Let's see what Brantley tries next.

10:28 - The refs take mercy on Florida, and call a holding on Milliner to give the Gators a first down at the Alabama 15.  Then on the next play Brantley throws to Moore in the end zone, and another flag is thrown. Pass interference on Milliner again.  Florida is officially a charity case.  Congratulations.

10:33 - Could it have gone any other way?  Brantley and Moody fumble the exchange, Alabama recovers.  The Brantley Turnover Extravaganza rages on.

FOURTH QUARTER

10:36 - We start the fourth quarter with Alabama up 31-6, and ready to heap more punishment upon the Gators.  Nick Saban is so happy that after the game tonight he's going to drink the blood of not one, but two babies.

10:39 - Alabama has to punt again, so it's Florida's ball once more.  How will they mess it up this time?  The only thing they haven't done tonight is give up a safety, so we should probably expect a Mike Pouncey snap to sail over Brantley's head and 50 yards through the back of the end zone.

10:44 - Wow, they just showed a stat that said the Tide only have 18 yards since halftime.  And they're still up 25.

10:46 - I know Gillilee is out of the game with an injury, but seriously, what's the point of having Jeff Demps in the game at this point?  He's already hurt, so why risk losing him next week in a game that's already decided?

10:48 - When it rains, it pours.  John Brantley just got sandwiched between two Alabama players while scrambling and he's down on the ground being attended to.  He looks to be in a considerable amount of pain too.

10:51 - See, this just makes no sense to me.  Both coaches just saw Brantley leave the game with an injury, yet Alabama still has all their starters in.  You're up 25.  You're not going to lose this game.  Get your reserves some play.

10:57 - Brantley is back in the game for Florida with a couple of sore ribs.  Why, I don't know.

11:00 - Only 4:22 left in the game.  Mercy will be taken upon us all soon enough.  It's still 31-6 Alabama.

11:05 - Saban has Mark Ingram running the wildcat just to pad his stats.  Well, that's awful nice, but he's going to need about 300 more yards to catch up to Denard Robinson.

11:07 - Verne points out that every one of Alabama's remaining opponents have a bye week before facing the Tide.  Which doesn't seem fair, but let's be real, Alabama had a bye this week as well.

11:09 - All right, it's a final.  Alabama wins 31-6.  The Tide get South Carolina next week, and if they get past them the only thing I see standing in their way to the SEC championship is Cam Newton and Auburn.

Posted on: September 28, 2010 4:55 pm
 

Mark Ingram loses cool, Alabama fans lose minds

Posted by Adam Jacobi

The Birmingham News' Kevin Scarbinsky reported earlier today about the circumstances surrounding the two brief instances where Alabama tailback (and reigning Heisman Trophy winner) Mark Ingram has lost his cool recently. Both were reactions to pretty low behavior from his opponents, and that's made perfectly clear in Scarbinsky's writeup:

On the fourth-down quarterback sneak that iced the game, Ingram rushed into the pile and gave Greg McElroy a gentle shove. When he bounced out of the pile, Ingram was close to fighting mad.

"They were being a little dirty, you know," Ingram said. "Pushing, grabbing, things like that. Competitive spirit comes out. [...] Sportsmanship was great throughout the whole game," he said. "I think they were just a little angry at the end or whatever because I saw a few guys punching the quarterback when he was under the pile. I was trying to get him up, and the dude snatched me up, also. You know? It is what it is."

And as for the other instance, Ingram head-butted a Duke player who had yanked Ingram's leg after Ingram scored a touchdown. Footage of Ingram's headbutt is here*.

At any rate, they're both unfortunate incidents, but ones without lasting repercussions or anything. So Ingram's had his say, coach Nick Saban's not publicly disciplining Ingram, case closed, right?

Well, no: this is the state of Alabama we're talking about, where football fans are whipped into such a lather about the sport that literally any mention of a player that isn't accompanied by effusive praise is regarded as some mix of bias, treason, and communism. Again, consider: Scarbinsky's column functioned primarily to provide context for something that, to Ingram, is aberrant behavior. Alabamans' response: YOU'RE KILLING EVERYTHING AND YOU'RE HORRIBLE:

So....what's the point of this article, Scarbuttski? Shouldn't you be talking about the rest of the SEC that is playing dirty or, are you trying to say that Ingram is a hothead?
I have heard that Scarb was diss'd by the Alabama staff and he took it personal now has a vendetta...regardless though he writing [sic] is pretty bad. I guess the best thing we can do is stop reading and commenting.
Kevin , that was uncalled for. People who follow your columns (both of the people who currently read you) know what you just did. You took a shot at someone while pretending objectivity. Sad. When the "Birmingham News" goes under - and it is, as we all know - you were a major cause.

That's right: reporting about things that actually happened will bankrupt the newspaper. Well, then.

This is all ludicrous, of course. There's a difference between reporting and cheerleading, and these readers appear to be angry at Scarbinsky for knowing that difference. And besides, if he really wanted to impugn Ingram's integrity with a cheap shot, he could have done it by saying "If Mark Ingram got into a fight he'd need Trent Richardson to finish it for him."

 

*Note: this may not be an accurate portrayal of the event.

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