Tag:Wake Forest
Posted on: August 9, 2008 6:08 pm
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These teams had the five best offseasons

A minimum of off-field knuckleheadedness and nothing but positive vibes for these five programs ...

Florida Atlantic: The head coach is coming off a conference title, bowl win and contract extension at age 74. If the Good Lord is willing, Howard Schnellenberger will go until he is 84 and somehow get the Owls into a better league by the time he's done. Eighteen starters return from an 8-5 team. The first four weeks include trips to Texas, Michigan State and Minnesota. Am I crazy for thinking the Owls will beat (at least) one of those teams?

North Carolina: Butch Davis should have the Heels in a bowl in his second season. The top eight rushers and top nine receivers return along with quarterback T.J. Yates who is recovering from shoulder surgery. Assistant John Blake already is showing his worth in recruiting.  The Heels lost six games by seven points or less last season. There's no Clemson, Florida State or Wake Forest on the schedule. A second-place finish in the Coastal Division isn't out of the question.

Ohio State: Duh, right? The thing that gets me is that 13 juniors explored their draft worth in the offseason. Only one, Vernon Gholston, left. That means there are at least 12 other players on the roster who would at least be in an NFL camp at this point. Then The Vest landed the nation's best recruit (Terrelle Pryor). You know I love the Bucks on paper (No. 1 in CBSSports.com preseason top 25). A third BCS title game berth looks likely, even if they lose to USC.

Ole Miss: Ed Orgeron recruited like a mother. Unfortunately, the talent didn't translate to wins in time. Houston Nutt inherits a team that could be the surprise of the SEC West. The defense gets back its top 14 tacklers. Texas transfer Jevan Snead is ready to go at quarterback. One-time five-star recruit Jerrell Powe got eligible a couple of weeks ago. Coming off its first winless SEC season since 1982 don't be surprised to see the Rebels in a bowl game. 


Thanks, Ed.

Texas Tech: Yeah, I know. The Red Raiders are everybody's darling. Mike Leach's spread option might be the most productive in the nation. Graham Harrell and Michael Crabtree are a year older and wiser. But the defense has been upgraded too (you only need a little in the Big 12) and Texas has to come to Lubbock. Anything less than 10 victories should be considered a disappointment.


Posted on: July 14, 2008 2:36 pm
 

Some thoughts on the best coach series...

I purposefully waited until the coaching series was over to go back and dissect the numbers. When picking the 

coaches in each category, I didn't want to be influenced.

Anyway, here is how it breaks down ...

 The big winners were the SEC and Big 10. Surprise! Eighteen of the 66 coaches chosen came from the SEC (27.2 percent). The Big Ten had 13 picks (19.7 percent). Only three of the coaches came from non-BCS leagues (two from Conference USA and one from the WAC).

 Another surprise (not). Nine of the 66 coaches came from schools in Florida.

 

 The Big 12 and Pac-10 each led with three coaches on the dream staff. Norm Chow (UCLA, offensive coordinator), Pat Ruel (offensive line, USC) and Pete Carroll (head coach, USC) came from the Pac-10. In the Big 12, there were Cale Gundy (running backs, Oklahoma), Bruce Walker (tight ends, Missouri) and Brian Cabral (linebackers, Colorado). The Big Ten and SEC each had two "bests".

 USC and Florida tied for the most coaches on the list, each with five. That means that more than half the staffs at those schools are among the best in the country. That would make sense since the schools have combined to finish No. 1 in the AP poll three of the last five years.

 Thirty-five total schools were represented, including at least two programs from all six BCS conferences. Notre Dame did not have a coach on the list. However, East Carolina, Hawaii, UNLV and Tulsa did.

 The only SEC schools not represented were Vanderbilt, South Carolina, Kentucky and Mississippi State.

 

 The only conferences not to have at least one coach on a list were the Sun Belt and MAC.

 

 Nine of the dream staffers have won a national championship. The only ringless member is Missouri tight ends coach Bruce Walker.

Coaches I wished could have made the list but didn't:

 South Florida defensive backs coach Troy Douglas (coached first-rounder Mike Jenkins and fifth-round Trae Williams in 2007).

 There were too many good offensive coordinators. Among those that deserve mention: Bryan Harsin, Boise State; Mike Locksley, Illinois; Joker Phillips, Kentucky; Jim Bollman, Ohio State; Steed Lobotzke, Wake Forest.

 How do you leave off defensive coordinators DeWayne Walker of UCLA and Wally Burnham of South Florida?

 

 This has nothing to do with the coaching series but I found it interesting that Texas A&M's new president Elsa Murano isn't expecting much out of Mike Sherman in his first season.

"I have great expectations for coach (Mike) Sherman. Poor guy," Murano told the San Antonio Express-News. "We all think he needs to win the championship the first year, which of course cannot possibly happen. We need to give him a chance to rebuild.”

Cannot possibly happen? You've got to love Murano's candor.

Posted on: April 25, 2008 3:37 pm
Edited on: April 26, 2008 11:39 pm
 

(Rumor) Millin' Around

Lloyd Carr might end up being despised by both Ohio State and Michigan. Seems that Ol' Lloyd facilitated the transfer of offensive lineman Justin Boren to Ohio State.

 Texas Tech's Mike Leach on continuing to call his own plays unlike many of his more high-profile peers (Mark Richt, Charlie Weis, etc.):

"Otherwise, I'm just a hand shaker," Leach said.

 Wake Forest's Jim Grobe has written a letter of support on behalf of Cincinnati quarterback Ben Mauk. Mauk is seeking a sixth-year of eligibility. He was denied by the NCAA in February. Mauk has been injured in two of his five seasons but according to the NCAA his eligibility, his clock has run out.

Mauk transferred from Wake to Cincinnati in 2006. Last season, he led the Bearcats to a 10-3 season. In 2003, Mauk was injured and sat out the season. The NCAA has ruled that was his decision.

"He should be given another year," Grobe said. "It's really a slam dunk from my perspective. Most (college) presidents would like to see kids redshirted their first year ... When you redshirt a kid he should be given the chance to play four years of college football."

 You've seen the quickie books. You've sat through the I'm-going-to-the-NBA press conferences. But did Randy Bird get enough credit for Kansas' recent success in football and basketball?

Randy Who?

Exactly.

Bird is the 30-year-old nutritionist for KU's sports teams. One of only 17 full-time such persons in the country, he claims.

"I control the menus...," Bird said. "If you look at a team like Memphis, they ran out of gas. Our guys had quite a bit of energy in those last few minutes and overtime. The funny thing to me, before the game they were talking about Derrick Rose eating Twizzlers and a bunch of candy."

 My post-spring top 25 will hit cyberspace in the next few days. I'm seriously considering replacing No. 1 Georgia. As always, your input is always dreaded, er, welcome.

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