Author Archives: tardawg1014
If you notice a recurring theme to my posts, you know that I love everything SBNation does. The following link is no exception.
Ohio State shut down the vaunted Oregon spread option attack with a base 4-3. Daniel could speak more to what (if any) adjustments the Oregon offensive line could have made to mitigate tOSU’s attack, but this is just brilliant. I’ve spent the past hour and a half reading and re-reading this article.
(Author’s note: This is NOT a man crush post on
the Ohio State University, because I loathe Urban Meyer, the state of Ohio, and Big Ten everything. This is a warning that the squad hoisting the trophy on Monday night should be even better next year.)
Dear God, what did we just witness in the first College Football Playoff?
Urban Meyer is BACK, y’all. And he has somehow taken a 6-6 team under a fairly silly bowl ban to a national championship with a third-string quarterback. In just under three years. He combined #SECspeed with #B1Gcornfed with terrifying results against physical teams in Michigan State, Wisconsin, and Alabama, and with great prejudice against spread team Oregon in the championship. Both lines of scrimmage were painted scarlet and gray very early on, and the explosiveness of the skill guys and back seven looked like the most dominant of recent SEC teams.
Oh, and the Buckeyes stand to bring back 16 starters from this tour de force.
It’s absolutely egregious that a team can take their third-team quarterback and win neutral site games against the 13th, 1st and 2nd ranked teams in the land, and do it scoring a MINIMUM of 42 points. But that’s what the Buckeyes did with Cardale Jones, who I seriously believe should take his talents to the NFL. They don’t teach that kind of arm strength, but BOY do they pay for it. His replacement? 3rd-place Heisman finisher J.T. Barrett. Or former Heisman candidate Braxton Miller, who is rumored to be likely to transfer, but still. No issues there.
The running game is strong behind preseason-hype-generator Ezekiel Elliott, but this is the scary part: that O-line that thoroughly manhandled Oregon brings back 4 starters and 4 second-teamers. Yikes.
Despite the loss of leading receiver Devin Smith (28 ypc? WHAT?), the receiving game promises to improve as well, with the return of Dontre Wilson from injury and literally everyone else due to being ineligible for the NFL. Jalin Marshall in the Percy Harvin spot, as we saw on Monday, is going to be a problem.
More bad news here: 8 of the top 10 tacklers are slated to return, and logical replacements for both Curtis and Doran Grant are already established players! To a defense that finished 19th in yards per game THIS year!
Yeah, holy s**t.
One of the most impressive players I saw when rewatching the game last night was one with whom Georgia fans should be somewhat familiar: Raekwon (love the Wu-Tang penetration into sports culture) McMillan. The Georgia native only registered 54 tackles and 2.5 sacks this year, but he was a true freshman playing a backup role to the departing Curtis Grant.
Another true freshman LB, Darron Lee, had 5.5 sacks. Joey Bosa, a rising junior DE, had 13.5.
There are more names on both sides of the ball attached to a veritable ton of recruiting stars, but they don’t even merit mentioning yet until we see them on the field. Given the fact that the last three classes for the Buckeyes have all ranked in the top 3 nationally, expect more superstar names to emerge and be added to the list above.
We’ll finish the rant with Ohio State’s schedule. No, they were not promoted to the SEC or any other real league due to their dominance in the CFP. They still play in the B1G, which means losses are harder to come by.
They open with a Labor Day revenge trip to Virginia Tech, which may or may not be the last game of Frank Beamer’s career. A nonconference slate of no-names visiting the Horseshoe follows.
October road trips: Indiana and Rutgers. Home? Penn State and Maryland, which…still…eh. Add a home game vs. Minnesota and a trip to Illinois Nov. 14, and 10-0 is a mortal lock.
So, yeah. With all of this, Ohio State is two wins over the Michigans away from an undefeated (and unchallenged) regular season. They get Sparty at home, and travel to play
Brady Hoke hangover Jim Harbaugh’s Michigan team Thanksgiving weekend.
It bears repeating: This is NOT a man crush post on
the Ohio State University, because I loathe Urban Meyer, the state of Ohio, and Big Ten everything. This is a warning that the squad hoisting the trophy on Monday night should be even better next year.
I know this isn’t Georgia football per se, BUT: looking for more Georgia football? Download The UGA Vault for exclusive access to the greatest plays in Bulldog history, special features, interviews and more. It’s now available for free on Android and iOS. Download today!
I’ve been to the Belk (erstwhile Meineke Car Care) Bowl four times in my life, and that’s just sad. However, the 2014 Georgia Bulldogs managed to a) avoid a meaningless New Years Day bowl, saving you from starting 2015 in the state of Florida; b) avoid Nebraska, which seems impossible; and c) still manage to stay relatively close to home (Google maps says 3 hours 57 minutes, I say much less as an I-85 veteran).
For those of you making the trip, I salute your dedication. As such, a few things you should know about the prestigious bowl and Charlotte in general:
1) BBQ, Bojangles, and Cheerwine
There is no better locale in America for cheap, delicious food than the state of North Carolina.
While the cue in Charlotte is generally not authentic Eastern-style (vinegar based) or Western (ketchup-based), there are still a couple of decent spots to get a taste of that good NC pork. Your best bet is Bubba’s off Sunset Road near I-77, but…go while the sun’s out. If you’re not feeling adventure, Mac’s on South Boulevard is close to the stadium, and is thus a good gameday option.
Fast food- you have two stops. On the way in or out, you need to check out Cook-Out, a burger/hotdog/shake joint. Order a tray (sandwich, two sides, and a drink for around $5) and tweet me pictures. One just opened on Moreland Ave for you Dawgs not making the pilgrimage. The second stop is Bojangles’ on gameday. You can’t go wrong.
Cheerwine is indigenous to the Carolinas as well, and is the only soft drink I consume. One would describe it as cherry Dr. Pepper, but more delicious. A two-liter Cheerwine and a green-label Evan Williams will take you a LOOOOONNNNG way on the path to Belk Bowl bliss.
2) The Belk Bowl Has the Most Self-Aware Twitter Profile in Sports
They’re just…quirky. And when @FauxPelini gets involved, downright hilarious.
A few players asked us for advice on the ride. The only thing we could tell them is “If you ain’t first your last.”
— Belk Bowl (@belkbowl) December 27, 2014
— Belk Bowl (@belkbowl) December 7, 2014
3) Actually-Somewhat-Useful Gameday Knowledge
The area surrounding Bank of America Stadium is urban, but not menacing, and parking should cost you around $20 (after your trip to Bojangles). If you park more than about four tenths of a mile away from the stadium, you’re doing it wrong. Most of the parking is independent, private parking. If there’s a deck (you don’t need to go looking for one), I don’t know where it is.
This is my pal from the 2007 UNC/West Virginia game. West Virginia shares a border with Kentucky, so you may see esteemed folks such as this gentleman. This was taken moments before he lobbed the pictured Bud Light into the middle of our 20-person tailgate. West Virginia folks are the worst.
If you’re of the boozing persuasion, I’d suggest getting highly intoxicated before the game. Security was pretty tight inside the stadium last year, and aluminum pints of Bud Light cost me my January rent.
If at all possible, sit somewhere in the lower bowl. The upper deck is way, WAY up there (think Tech Deck) and allows pretty annoying winter breezes.
4) Our Esteemed EIC Worked at Belk
And he spent his formative years shattering glass ceilings with the department store behemoth.
Seriously though, if you have questions, I have answers. Tweet them to @Chad_Floyd and enjoy my home state!
Our crew at DudeYouCrazy (sans Jason Smith) has spent much of the past three weeks vehemently defending Mark Richt and his program at the University of Georgia. When you’re consistently an upper-echelon contender in the best conference in America in said conference’s golden era, you don’t look for the ‘grass is greener’ alternative. Any objective observer knows Georgia has been a couple of breaks in a couple of years away from the promised land.
The same theory applies, and holds even more water, with oft-unfairly-maligned offensive coordinator Mike Bobo.
If Bobo is offered the Colorado State head coaching job, he would be a fool not to accept. Andrew and Daniel both covered this very well. New Florida coach Jim McElwain left a stable of versatile offensive talent in Fort Collins, allowing a new coach to step in and replicate McElwain’s juggernaut, balanced, multiple, get-your-hands-to-the-playmakers offense. A couple years of sustained success, and Bobo is a top head coaching candidate in his early 40’s. Perhaps even a sure-fire winner as a Mark Richt replacement.
For the #FireBobo crew, here is what you stand to lose:
– An offense that has spent just two years out of the top four among SEC teams in scoring over the past eight years: Those two years were the 2009 Joe Cox abomination, where output slipped to a still-respectable 28.9 points a game (7th in the conference), and 2013, where all SEC offenses scored at record clips and Georgia finished 5th. You may recall injuries to Todd Gurley, Aaron Murray, Malcolm Mitchell, Michael Bennett, Justin Scott-Wesley, and Chris Conley in 2013, and that may have had a downwards effect on pulling the Dawgs all the way down to a paltry 36.7 points a game.
– Continuity with an underclassman quarterback taking over next year: Brice Ramsey has looked great in spot duty this year. With the losses of Gurley, Conley, and Bennett, do you want a young QB to lose two years’ education in a system tailored to allow him to make easy throws to open targets? Especially when those targets lack the experience of the past two years’ receiving corps?
– Recruits. I try not to buy into recruiting too much, but you have the next ‘can’t miss blue chipper’ in Washington QB Jacob Eason set to arrive on campus in the spring of 2016. Do you want him to reevaluate if he wants to move 3,000 miles to play ball when Pac-12 offenses are putting more QB’s in the league than anyone right now?
I’ll stick with the guy whose offense has finished in the top four in SEC total offense every year since 2011, even through the proliferation of the no huddle hurry up in the league, thank you very much.
Jeepers, there are too many bowls.
I really have no good way to present this to you in a manner that will excite you, and my only hope of Bowl Viewing Guide Vol. 1 not falling on blind eyes is that you share our obsession with amateur football’s highest level (and/or the betting thereof).
Week 1 is intended only to give you a solid excuse to sit in a recliner, drink bourbon, and ignore your siblings’ children. With one ranked team (Utah, at 22) and one Power 5 team (again Utah, of the Pac-12), these games are good for absolutely nothing else.
Saturday, Dec 20
Nevada (7-5) vs. Louisiana-Lafayette (8-4), New Orleans Bowl, 11AM, ESPN: Wait. The bowl game located in NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA starts at 10am local time? Even seasoned revelers such as all Louisianans and people from Reno won’t make kickoff for that.
Utah State (9-4) vs. UTEP (7-5), New Mexico Bowl, 2:20, ESPN: Ranked the bowl season’s least watchable bowl by SBNation’s Bill Connelly. Utah State was shut out by Tennessee before Chuckie Keeton went down with injury, so I can’t figure their third stringer is much count. I got nothing.
#22 Utah (8-4) vs. Colorado State (10-2), Las Vegas Bowl, 3:30, ABC: Luckily, the New Mexico Bowl is paired on TV with the best matchup of the day. Utah’s defensive line is a havoc-creating problem, and Colorado State is explosive even without new Florida coach Jim McIlwain. Rams WR Rashard Higgins, he of 1640 receiving yards this year, is the best player you’ve never heard of.
Western Michigan (8-4) vs. Air Force (9-3), Idaho Potato Bowl, 5:45, ESPN: According to the same article linked above, this is the third-most even bowl matchup. I feel like Boise is just the place for a five-overtime meaningless bowl game.
South Alabama (6-6) vs. Bowling Green (9-4), Camellia Bowl, 9:15, ESPN: So, a team that goes 5-3 in the Sun Belt gets in over an 8-0 Georgia Southern? Go away, NCAA. Well, Southern doesn’t have to travel to Montgomery, AL for the inaugural Camellia Bowl (spoken in ‘Gone With The Wind’ accent).
Monday, Dec 22
BYU (8-4) vs. Memphis (9-3), Miami Beach Bowl, 2:00, ESPN: The ‘Monday while people are still working during the week of Christmas game’, this game is played on the gravesite of the Orange Bowl, at… MARLINS PARK!
This game becomes must-see TV if this abomination goes off for touchdowns. Oh, and Memphis is pretty good.
Marshall (12-1) vs. Northern Illinois (11-2), Boca Raton Bowl, 6:00, ESPN: Boca Raton, FL, population 84,392, has a bowl game between two conference champions in its first year.
The first annual DudeYouCrazy.net bowl is accepting sponsorship bids now. We can seat about 9,000 at Grady High School. The game will be played in the coveted 2:15am timeslot, and ESPN WILL CARRY IT!
(This is actually the most compelling game on this list, I think.)
Navy (7-5) vs. San Diego State (7-5), San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl, 9:30, ESPN: You may notice that I typed the sponsor’s whole title for the first time here. That’s because the San Diego County Credit Union feels its clients need a bowl game in their honor. San Diego is absolutely one of two cities (Miami being the other) in the U.S. where this is deemed acceptable.
Wednesday, Dec 24
Central Michigan (7-5) vs. Western Kentucky (7-5), Bahamas (!!!) Bowl, noon, ESPN: Two directional midwestern state schools get to travel to the Bahamas. Customs agents in the Central time one, that white powder is NOT tarmac snow.
Fresno State (6-7) vs. Rice (7-5), Hawai’i Bowl, 8:00, ESPN: Christmas Eve is definitely the destination bowl game day of the year. Perfect background fodder to which one blacks out on eggnog. No, Fresno’s record is not a typo. They now join Georgia Tech as the only teams with losing records to participate in bowl games, a distinction I hate seeing the Jackets lose.
All told, these games rank 38, 36, 32, 30, 29, 27, 16, and 13 on Connelly’s rankings. DRAMA!
We’ll be back for the post-Christmas/still-not-great games next week.