Tag:TCU
Posted on: February 10, 2010 12:26 pm
Edited on: February 10, 2010 12:53 pm
 

Feel the earth move, college football

Expansion: It's coming and it's coming soon.

The latest round of rearranging the deck chairs on college football's luxury liner. You saw it in December when the Big Ten went out of its way to announce it was looking into expansion. The conservative, staid, reclusive (Walnut Park, Calif.?) Pac-10 then shook things up Tuesday by saying it is ready to "seriously" look at expansion.

I talked to a few people on Wednesday and an analysis piece is forthcoming later today, but suffice to say this comes down to three key elements at the moment:

Missouri to the Big Ten.

Colorado to the Pac-10 (as one of two expansion teams).

The Big 12 to the Rolodex to see who is interested in joining its fractured conference.

If the Large Dozen loses two teams, that damages its chances to negotiate for lucrative contracts when its TV deals come due in the next three years. Then as the Big 12 scrambles to stay together, it robs from the poor (TCU? Houston?) TV consultant Neal Pilson told me this latest round of upheaval means that the core of college football may be limited to 40 schools.

"The colleges better be careful  that they don't get what they're asking for," Pilson said, "that is complete freedom to make TV deals because TV is basically interested in the big schools. I'm talking about the bigger schools within the big conferences. I think the magic number is probably 30 to 40."

That's essentially what Comrade Ratto wrote today, cutting to the chase with machete as usual.

Posted on: January 15, 2010 6:53 pm
Edited on: January 17, 2010 12:33 pm
 

Breaking down the Tennessee search

Tennessee fancies itself a top 10 program in the best of times. In the worst of times, it just landed the coach of the team that tied for fifth in the WAC.

That’s one way to look at the hiring of Derek Dooley on Friday at Tennessee.

Rocky Flop? 

Here’s another, a formal list of names that I’m told were on the Tennessee list:

Will Muschamp, Texas defensive coordinator – Apparently turned down a $3 million-a-year offer.

Jon Gruden, Monday Night Football – What job doesn’t he apply for?

Troy Calhoun, Air Force – Happy at Air Force. Can do better if he aspires to return to the NFL.

Randy Edsall, UConn – A great coach who would be out of his element in Knoxville.

Lovie Smith, Chicago Bears – May be fired by the Bears. Apparently was a Tennessee assistant way back.

Kyle Whittingham, Utah – Turned down an offer Thursday night.

Doug Marrone, Syracuse – One year for the still-rebuilding Orange.

Gary Patterson, TCU – No way.

Kippy Brown, Tennessee assistant -- Interviewed on Friday. Apparently didn't do well.

Al Temple, Temple – A late well-respected addition.

Phil Fulmer, former Tennessee coach – Might have been AD and coach by Monday if the search dragged on.


A list of names that should have been considered

Mike Stoops, Arizona – Tennessee is into famous surnames lately. There is no more respected name in the sport right now than Stoops. Arizona is beginning to turn around.

Bobby Petrino, Arkansas – Hey, he lasted as many games with the Falcons as Kiffin did with the Vols, 13.

Tommy Bowden, former Clemson coach – Duh. Why wouldn’t you call this guy?

Rich Rodriguez, Michigan – Please tell me he wouldn’t take Mike Hamilton’s call. Then please tell me he wouldn’t take the job, if offered.

Chip Kelly, Oregon  – If you’re a top 10 program don’t you have to at least see if he’s interested?

Posted on: December 9, 2009 5:39 pm
 

Scripps-Howard Heisman poll

Another major Heisman indicator. Mark Ingram is the winner of the final Scripps-Howard News Service Heisman poll, by a point over Ndamukong Suh. Yours truly voted in this poll all season.

This is shaping up to be the closest Heisman vote in history. Scripps-Howard is a further indicator with Ingram getting 33 points to Suh's 32. Third-place Toby Gerhart actually had the most first-place votes, four. There were 10 voters nationwide. Here is the breakdown:

1. Mark Ingram, RB, Alabama, 33 points (two first-place votes).

2. Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska, 32 (2).

3. Toby Gerhart, RB, Stanford, 29 (4).

4. Colt McCoy, QB, Texas, 16 (1).

5 (tie). Tim Tebow, QB, Florida, 7 (1); C.J. Spiller, RB, Clemson, 7.


Others receiving votes: Houston QB Case Keenum 5, TCU DE Jerry Hughes, 1.

 

Posted on: December 7, 2009 3:07 pm
Edited on: December 7, 2009 4:43 pm
 

The Fiesta Bowl situation

I want to believe the Fiesta Bowl is breaking new ground with matching TCU and Boise against each other. It has more than a 35-year history of thinking out of the box.

Remember Miami-Penn State in 1987? That was a Fiesta-arranged meeting between No. 1 and No. 2. Right or wrong, Louisville filled a void in 1991 when the Martin Luther King holiday controversy raged.

So what are we supposed to make of TCU-Boise State? The bowl says the game is a ratings winner for TV. The stats say that last year’s Poinsettia Bowl between the same two teams was the 15th highest rated bowl.

The bowl says it’s a chance to match up a couple of unbeaten non-BCS teams. In that sense, Orrin Hatch, the schools, the Mountain West and Congress can’t complain. The alternative was playing a two-loss team from a major conference.

That’s what TCU and Boise probably wanted but neither school can complain either. They are playing the highest ranked team available -- except that they aren’t. The ideal matchup would be TCU vs. Cincinnati. But as executive director John Junker explained Cincinnati is like a long-distance girlfriend, not very geographically desirable.

OK, so this isn’t the best matchup. It isn’t particularly a TV ratings winner either, although TCU-Cincinnati would be worse.

Here’s a working theory based on nothing but conjecture …

 There was some low-level pressure from spin doctor Ari Fleischer, the BCS’ p.r. king, to keep the kids away from the adult table. That’s assuming that Fleischer knew enough about the system to suggest a Boise-TCU game. (Nothing personal, Ari. Ninety-nine percent of the country doesn’t get the BCS.)

The point being, that such a game would reduce the yelp from critics to almost zero.

 The four BCS bowl directors “colluded” to dump TCU and Boise in the desert. That keeps the embarrassment factor for all the BCS bowls to a minimum.

 With Cincinnati, Boise and TCU in separate bowls, the possibility exists of three unsettling upsets by non-traditional programs. Now the number is down to one, if Cincy beats Florida in the Sugar Bowl.

I don’t give the BCS bowl honchos that much credit. They’re in this for the individual gain of their bowls. If they’re in the business of helping other bowls, this instance would be the first time ever.

On the other hand, the Fiesta wasn’t exactly crowing (privately, that is) about having to take Utah in 2004 and Boise in 2006. Suddenly, a school with 40,000 living alumni (TCU) and one from the Idaho hinterlands (Boise) are appointment television?

Something doesn’t fit here.

Final verdict: We’ll have to take the Fiesta at its word. At the end of the day, it’s trying to get as many people in the Valley of the Sun for as long as possible to spend a lot of money.

As a fan, the alternatives – Iowa-Boise, Iowa-TCU – don’t do much for me. We already know that Boise and TCU are probably better than Iowa.

Now if one of those schools were matched up against Florida in the Sugar Bowl?

Category: NCAAF
Posted on: December 6, 2009 9:04 pm
Edited on: December 6, 2009 9:04 pm
 

Fiesta goes off the board

If the hijacking of the BCS conference call Sunday night is any indicator, the BCS' unpopularity is reaching a critical mass. Four prank calls got through.

One media member had the line of the night saying, "Sounds like White House security."

Now onto the serious stuff. The most curious aspect of the BCS matchups is the Fiesta selecting both Boise and TCU.
Reported here on Friday, that's the first time in the history of the BCS that two undefeated non-BCS teams have met.

"It certainly shows there's more access than ever before," said BCS administrator John Swofford.

Perhaps. It also keeps a BCS power in another bowl from being embarrassed by a non-traditional power if they schools were split up. If the Fiesta wanted to match two undefeated teams, why didn't it pick higher ranked Cincinnati to play against TCU? Turns out that Cincinnati is closer to New Orleans for the Sugar Bowl and TCU and Boise are more regional. So it wasn't all about matchup.

These two teams played last year in the Pointsettia Bowl. I'm still having a hard time believing this is a ratings winner for TV. Still, we've come a long way from Utah, Hawaii and Boise being poison pills for the big bowl guys. The Fiesta picked the Frogs and Broncos, it says, based in consulation with TV experts. Those consultants believe that the game will be a ratings winner. We'll see.

Here's the good ...

Two of the five remaining undefeated teams meet with TCU having an outside shot at sharing a national championship in the AP poll.

The bad ...

The BCS looks like it is ducking an embarrassment similar to last year when Alabama lost to Utah.

"The answer is clear, the bowl has its prerogative to choose its matchup," said Bill Hancock, the BCS executive director.
Category: NCAAF
Tags: Boise State, TCU
 
Posted on: December 6, 2009 8:35 am
 

BCS bowl lineup and my top five

If form holds – and that means Texas finishing No. 2 in the BCS – this is how the BCS bowls will shake out tonight …

BCS title game – Texas vs. Alabama
Comment:  Got to think Bama will be almost a prohibitive favorite but Texas wasn’t supposed to beat USC in the 2006 Rose Bowl either.

Fiesta Bowl – TCU vs. Boise State
Comment: Fiesta is always thinking out of the box. It becomes the first BCS bowl to match two undefeated non-BCS schools. Should be a ratings winner.

Orange Bowl – Iowa vs. Georgia Tech
Comment:  Pasty Iowans will overrun South Florida and come away schooled in the ways of the option offense.

Sugar – Florida vs. Cincinnati
Comment: Alabama didn’t want to be here last year. Will Florida coming off an SEC title game loss? Also, who coaches the Bearcats with Brian Kelly headed to Notre Dame?

Rose – Oregon vs. Ohio State*
Comment:  Might be the best game of the bunch. Chip Kelly’s wide open Quack Attack against Ohio State’s old-style defense.

*--locked in

Here is my final regular-season top five. You can see the entire top 25 later Sunday:
1.Alabama
2. TCU
3. Texas
4. Cincinnati 
5. Florida

Posted on: December 6, 2009 8:35 am
 

BCS bowl lineup and my top five

If form holds – and that means Texas finishing No. 2 in the BCS – this is how the BCS bowls will shake out tonight …

BCS title game – Texas vs. Alabama
Comment:  Got to think Bama will be almost a prohibitive favorite but Texas wasn’t supposed to beat USC in the 2006 Rose Bowl either.

Fiesta Bowl – TCU vs. Boise State
Comment: Fiesta is always thinking out of the box. It becomes the first BCS bowl to match two undefeated non-BCS schools. Should be a ratings winner.

Orange Bowl – Iowa vs. Georgia Tech
Comment:  Pasty Iowans will overrun South Florida and come away schooled in the ways of the option offense.

Sugar – Florida vs. Cincinnati
Comment: Alabama didn’t want to be here last year. Will Florida coming off an SEC title game loss? Also, who coaches the Bearcats with Brian Kelly headed to Notre Dame?

Rose – Oregon vs. Ohio State*
Comment:  Might be the best game of the bunch. Chip Kelly’s wide open Quack Attack against Ohio State’s old-style defense.

*--locked in

Here is my final regular-season top five. You can see the entire top 25 later Sunday:
1.Alabama
2. TCU
3. Texas
4. Cincinnati 
5. Florida

Posted on: November 28, 2009 6:38 pm
 

Boise State going to the Fiesta (tentatively)

It was like old times heading into Saturday: Oklahoma and Nebraska holding the key to the college football season.

For Boise State.

The Sooners came through for God, for country, for the Broncos who were down to their last BCS chance. Either Oklahoma beat Oklahoma State on Saturday or the Broncos might have been relegated to bowl purgatory.

For the love of all that is decent, Detroit? Really?

The BCS critics’ flamethrowers were at the ready before Oklahoma slogged through a somewhat boring 27-0 decision over Oklahoma State.

The result, though, meant a whole lot more in Idaho and in the Prairie Village, Kan. office of BCS executive director Bill Hancock than it did anywhere in Norman.
The Broncos are going BCS bowling for the second time in four years. Tentatively. The OU win knocked out Oklahoma State (9-3) and probably locked up a spot for Boise in the Fiesta Bowl against what looks like either TCU or Iowa.

Tentatively, because there is one more hurdle to clear. If Nebraska upsets Texas next week in the Big 12 title game then Boise’s spot in the BCS will be taken Texas. The Horns would most likely go as an attractive 12-1 at-large team.

For Boise, Oklahoma and Nebraska have become teams of the century. If form holds – Texas will be a prohibitive favorite next week – then all five current undefeated I-A programs would be in BCS bowls. (TCU, Cincinnati, Boise, Texas and the Florida/Alabama winner)

Relieved: BCS bosses were ready to take more hits if Boise had been shut out despite a second consecutive undefeated regular season by the Broncos.

Comatose: Oklahoma State which shouldn’t have bothered to get off the bus. With a Fiesta Bowl berth staring them in the face, the Pokes choked.

What else do you call it? Sure, quarterback Zac Robinson was banged up, but didn’t we see a former minor league pitcher Brandon Weeden rally Okie State against Colorado?

As we’ve learned, the BCS has different affects on different people.

 
 
 
 
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