Cavalcade Of Whimsy: Defending Missouri

Cavalcade Of Whimsy: Defending Missouri. The impossible task in the playoff picture - trying to excuse a loss to Indiana.

Cavalcade of Whimsy

Dec. 2
 

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- 2013 Cavalcades 
- Aug 26 Josh Shaw, playoff talk, and there's a new network?  
- Sept 2 College Football's big new problem  
- Sept 9 The impossible: defending the Big Ten 
- Sept. 16 More Big Ten issues, UCLA Jerry & More 
- Sept. 23 Read it right in the ...  
- Sept. 30 No, Florida State isn't No. 1 
- Oct. 7 Trevor, Katy & Ole Miss
- Oct. 14 Gurley, Jameis & Autographs 
- Oct. 21 The Play, and is Florida State that good?
- Oct. 28 What matters in the rankings
- Nov. 4 The Playoff Doomsday Scenario 
- Nov. 11 Return Of The Big Guys 
- Nov. 18 The Gurley Situation 
- Nov. 25 Barry Sanders vs. Melvin Gordon

- Part 2 Ten biggest playoff questions before the HUGE weekend

Sorry if this column sucks, it’s not my fault … it sucks, and Dan Mullen is not going to be able to freaking sleep for 365 days until it shows up to their place next year.

”Not with that shirt. … I said, not with that shirt. … Welcome to the party, handsome.” … Simply for the material, I always root for chaos. I like crazy upsets, and I love shocking victories from out of leftfield that shake up the status quo. However, if you’re telling me that my inaugural 2015 College Football Playoff will start out on January 1st with a Pac-12 champion Oregon team that was considered by just about everyone to be a preseason top five squad taking on the undefeated defending national champion Florida State Seminoles in the Rose Bowl, and is followed up by the SEC champion Alabama Crimson Tide facing Big Ten champion Ohio State in the Sugar Bowl, no offense TCU and Baylor, but I’m good.

Head … exploding … Can you even imagine the bickering that would be going on right now if this season happened last year in the BCS era? We’d be all talking about an Alabama vs. Florida State national championship possibility and the potential of an utter disaster if one of those two were to lose this weekend. The Oregon/Baylor/TCU/Ohio State fight would’ve been phenomenal.

”We stop at Pancakes Hause.” … In the end, there was a basic problem when the face of the program looked like it might stuff you in a wood chipper.

There’s no need to treat them like an Alabama assistant coach … What does the committee think? What is its opinion on TCU? How will they deal with Ohio State? What are they thinking when the members see Florida State struggle? Here’s a thought for next year and down the road – we should be able to actually ask them. Look, these are alpha dog personalities on this 12-person committee – they can talk. They can think and speak and handle things themselves, and in some cases, for their head coach during a game when a referee is being a meanie. Just because they each might have differing opinions on a topic, that doesn’t mean they can’t come to a consensus in the room.

Okay, my man. You “came here to play FOOTBALL,” so now it’s time to do it … When are people going to learn. If you’re playing quarterback at The Ohio State University, you’re probably okay. It’s not like they’re dragging some guy out of psych class – especially not Cardale Jones – and asking him to give it the old college try. Jones wasn’t a superstar of superstar recruits, but he was Scout.com’s No. 24-ranked quarterback prospect in 2011, coming in at the same time as Braxton Miller, a five-star, No. 2 overall-caliber talent. Ohio State is going to be okay.

The University of Pacific is doing just fine … The University of Alabama-Birmingham will continue to exist if it doesn’t have a football program. So will you. But here’s the question – how much does UAB football have to carry the sports that truly don’t generate any revenue? If UAB ditches men’s golf, soccer and tennis, and enough women’s sports to still keep the Title IX side of things happy, does football work? In most cases, football and basketball can pay for themselves, but as soon as they have to start funding the useless other sports – and, yes, non-revenue sports are totally unnecessary – there’s a problem.

Kinda, sorta making the indefensible argument, but not really … Yes, the SEC East champion lost at home to Indiana. It’s every non-SEC fan’s first comment every and any time anything positive is brought up about how good the SEC is and how much the Big Ten sucks, but the problem is that about ten people who use this as a reason for anything actually watched the game.

There’s no excuse – you don’t lose at home to Indiana – however, that was a weird game with an out-of-butt performance from a Hoosier team that let it all hang out and took several big chances a week after losing to Bowling Green.

First of all, IU still had a quarterback. Nate Sudfeld threw for 2,523 yards and 21 touchdowns in 2013 – averaging 210 yards per game – playing so well that the dynamic Tre Roberson ended up leaving the team. Solid to start out this season, he threw for 252 yards and a touchdown against the Tigers, but went down for the year with a shoulder injury against Iowa.

Secondly, Missouri was banged up, missing star defensive end Markus Golden and a few other key parts. Even so, the defense allowed IU to convert just 1-of-14 third down chances, while the Tiger offense cranked up 503 yards.

So what was the problem? Tevin Coleman ran for 132 yards and a score, and D’Angelo Roberts had a strong day on the ground as the Hoosiers came up with a balanced attack with 241 rushing yards and three touchdowns, but the biggest issue turned out to be penalties, committing ten on the day including a pass interference on a play that seemed to seal the win for Mizzou.

Again, no excuses – Missouri has a hard time explaining to the world why it might deserve to be in the playoff with this loss anchored around its neck – but it was an aberration. The shutout blowout loss to Georgia at home is actually more damning to the overall cause.

”Lose it? Coleman, in a couple of hours, you're going to be the richest butler that ever lived.” … In the history of recorded mankind, has there ever been a quieter amazing season than Tevin Coleman’s 2,036-yard campaign, the sixth-best rushing season in Big Ten history (and without a bowl game)? All he did was average 7.5 yards per carry and hit the 100-yard mark in every game buy the 20-carry, 71-yard day against Penn State, finishing with 15 touchdowns – including three against Ohio State – despite having no passing game to take the heat off over the second half of the year and being keyed on by every defensive coordinator on every play.

Gentlemen, my Heisman vote comes down to one game. Who loves me more?… Minnesota’s David Cobb ran for 145 yards against Ohio State, and Indiana’s Tevin Coleman ran for 228 yards and three scores. Let’s say Melvin Gordon roughly splits the difference against the Buckeyes and comes in with around 175 yards, and then goes off in the bowl game for around 200. There’s a chance that Gordon could finish the year with around 2,600 rushing yards and more than 30 touchdowns and not win the Heisman trophy. Marcus Mariota is fantastic, but is he really an immortal? Is he really a legendary college football figure? If he rocks against Arizona in the Pac-12 championship, then yeah. Maybe. Meanwhile, Gordon is blowing past Ron Dayne, Larry Johnson, Archie Griffin, Lorenzo White, Eddie Georgia, Montee Ball, Keith Byars, and all the great running backs in Big Ten history and obliterating the single-season record.

”She's not my mother, Todd!” … Give Florida credit for playing really, really hard in the loss to Florida State, but also give credit for not lashing out when getting yelled at on the sidelines by lame-duck head coach Will Muschamp. It’s nice that Muschamp is still coaching his team up, but I really wanted to see one of the players go, “ooooooh, what are you going to do, not play me next year? Ooooooh, I’m real scared.”

”That motion is denied, Mr. Hill. Ricky Suggs is an inspiration to us all. Now on to more important matters: My motion to add ‘fatty fatty boom-balatty’ to the list of unacceptable hate speech.” … Every few years or so it’s my civic duty to blow apart the erroneous and moronic argument that a top college football team could beat the NFL’s worst squad – like Alabama could beat the Oakland Raiders. Of course, Alabama is made up of 18-to-22-year-old kids on a team with a slew of good pro prospects, while Oakland is a team of grown-ass men who are all actually pro players. Throw in the film study, preparation, coaching, trainers, experience, and all the other factors, and the college team would lose by 40, at least.

All the Sports Jock and Chad types now are trying to make the “no way Kentucky could beat the Philadelphia 76ers” argument, saying the same types of things I do when it comes to the football debate, like the idea of the 76ers being made up of grown men, while this potential juggernaut of a Wildcat team is full of star freshmen.

Different game, different debate.

Could the 2014-2015 Kentucky Wildcats win on a regular basis in the NBA? Not a chance, but could they beat Philadelphia? Maybe not in a seven-game series, but absolutely.

Very famously, Chris Webber, Bobby Hurley, and a team full of college all-stars beat the 1992 Dream Team in a scrimmage. Okay, so Michael Jordan was held out for stretches, and the Dream Teamers annihilated the college guys the next time out when they went full throttle, but it would be possible for UK to win on the right day.

Duh, basketball isn’t football, but get hot from three, hit your shots, make a couple of key defensive stops, and yes, a great college basketball team could absolutely beat an NBA team on the right day, while a college football team would never, ever, ever beat the worst of NFL teams, mainly because of the physical nature.

”There's no point in asking, you'll get no reply/ Oh just remember I don't decide/ I got no reason it's all too much/ You'll always find us out to lunch” … From the press release from Illinois Athletic Director Mike Thomas announcing that Tim Beckman would remain as the head coach for another year. “Our student-athletes have played their best football of the season down the stretch of a tough schedule that included nine bowl-eligible opponents. It’s my expectation that with the upcoming bowl and another off-season of development, that Tim’s continued leadership will keep Fighting Illini football moving forward and even more competitive in the conference and nationally.”

Translation No. 1: The football program doesn’t want to pay the guy close to $4 million dollars to go fishing for the next two years and deal with a coaching vacancy.

Translation No. 2: Meow Meow Meow Meow, Meow Meow Meow Meow, Meow Meow Meow Meow, Meow Meow Meow Meow.

Part One would’ve been better … but Baylor hired a PR firm to lobby to get in it. It didn’t work.

- Part 2 Ten biggest playoff questions before the HUGE weekend


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