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Tiger fans,

There is no opponent to prepare for this week . . . because LSU has a bye this weekend.

But have no fear. This week to make up for the lag-time, I will give my 4-game progress reports of each position thus far this season, beginning today with QB’s and RB’s.

Quarterbacks:

This was a C or a C- until the second half of the Auburn game. For the first 2 and a half games of the season, LSU was wasting its weapons and wasting their ability to move down the field vertically. But since Jarrett Lee’s monster second half against Auburn, LSU has utilized its weapons better and have thus become a more effective offense.

Grade: B-

What to look for the rest of the year: Jarrett Lee – It’s becoming obvious LSU will go as far as Lee leads them. If he plays with poise and avoids the critical mistake in a game, LSU can be great. If he plays like the Auburn first half ever again, LSU can lose to anyone on their schedule the rest of the year. And yes, I mean anyone, because Tulane is much improved this year and Troy is no slouch either.

Runningbacks:

The strength of the team (other than defensive line). Charles Scott has emerged from the pack as an absolute maniac, rushing for 100 yards in four straight games. And Richard Murphy and Keiland Williams haven’t been slouches either. They just have not earned the ability to take carries from LSU’s Heisman candidate.

Grade: A

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NFL Power Rankings:

1. New York Giants – The NFC East is like the SEC in football. And the Giants are the last unbeaten left.

2. Tennessee Titans – I refuse to downplay the Titans anymore. Beating the Vikings is a hard thing to do. The Saints will find this out next weekend.

3. Dallas Cowboys – The Cowboys played poorly in every aspect of the game and only lost to a good team by a few points. They’ll be back.

4. Buffalo Bills – The Bills have a 1 1/2 game lead in the division and are still unbeaten. Have they beaten anyone legit yet? I don’t think so. But they are still unbeaten.

5. Tampa Bay Bucs – The Bucs have switched from Garcia to Griese and it’s worked so far. I just like the makeup of their team, for some reason.

6. Carolina Panthers – I think the Panthers are extremely overrated. But they are 3-1. So you can not ignore that until they prove to me that I am right.

7. Washington Redskins – The Skins are quiet and are boring to watch. But so far, they are winning. And that’s all that matters.

8. Denver Broncos – They will fall more than this before year’s end. Loss to the Chiefs? Get real.

9. Jacksonville Jaguars – After an 0-2 start, the Jags are back with 2-straight wins. Expect the usual 11-5, 10-6 season from those guys.

10. New Orleans Saints – I liked what the Saints did Sunday. I really did. They ran it, threw it. Played a little defense. They don’t have to be a great defensive team. They just have to not be terrible. They do that, they’ll win their share.

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Headlines:

Sox beat Tigers, force playoff with Twins – I like the Sox. But the Twins have history on their side. And are more rested.

Ginoboli to miss 2 months – This is not a year to miss 2 months in the West. Could the Spurs maybe miss the playoffs? Or be a very low seed once they get into the playoffs?

McGrady says left shoulder is arthritic and knee is not healed – Do not read into this, because in the fine print he says that he will be ready before the season starts. That’s all that matters. T-Mac is notorious for trying to make people feel sorry for him during training camp so that he can cop out on preseason.

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YouTube Video of the Day:

Have a good day, folks!

Tiger fans,

The Saints were playing with, in my opinion, their seasons on the line Sunday and they responded big-time, pounding the 49ers 31-17 in a game that was closer than the scoreboard indicated because of two redzone turnovers by San Fran quarterback JT O’Sullivan.

With the win, the Black and Gold is now 2-2 and already back in the hunt in the NFC South because no one has really taken the ball and run with it yet.

Here are my observations from yesterday’s win.

1. Deuce’s Wild – The Saints are 2-2. And should be 4-0 if not for Sean Payton’s “plan” to ease Deuce back into action. That really made me laugh when the announcers mentioned it during the telecast, because it’s such horse crap. Is Deuce any more or less healthy today than he was on Wednesday of last week? Is he more healthy today than he was 10 days ago? Long story short, he’s been ready to rock and roll since preseason (that’s why he was medically cleared to play by doctors, who know more about ACL’s than Sean Payton does).

2. Gimme, Gimme Moore- This Lance Moore kid can really play. I said before the season the Saints needed a legit receiver to run alongside Meachem. I think Lance Moore is that. With Shockey, Meachem and Bush all running routes around him, he doesn’t have to be Jerry Rice — he just needs to catch the ball. And he did that Sunday and has done that all season.

3. Pressure packed D-Line – Give props to Ed Orgeron. I do not know what he told his defensive line, or what he saw on film. But the Saints punched O’Sullivan in the mouth all afternoon and forced wild throws, which a couple of times ended up in the hands of Saints defenders.

4. Same ole story with DBs – Yes, they did have 2 INTs in big spots. But to be able to get a turnover in the redzone, it means you allowed your opponent to get in the red zone in the first place. The Saints played well (probably the best they’ve played all season) on Sunday. But the defense still got bullied quite a bit, to the tune of 257 yards passing for O’Sullivan.

But all things considered, it’s a great win and like I said before, probably the best the team has played all season.

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In LSU news, the polls are out and the voices of reason have spoken and LSU is No. 2 in the Coaches Poll and the Harris poll, while being jumped by Bama in the AP Poll where LSU is #3.

I know I will hear all week “Blah, blah, blah, LSU should be above Bama.” But you know what? It’s really irrelevant. It really is. Because the Tigers get their chance to let this issue be decided on the field, so whether LSU is #2 now or #4 now, or #5 now, it doesn’t matter. They have the brunt of their schedule left on the table and names like Florida (maybe twice), Georgia (maybe twice) and Alabama yet to go. So just win and everything else will take care of itself.

With all that being said, here is my new SEC power rankings.

1. Alabama – It’s hard to hide leading Georgia in their building 31-3 in the first half.

2. LSU – Probably played their second-to-worst game of the entire season Saturday. But a win is a win. (just ask Florida).

3. Vanderbilt – Do I think Vanderbilt is the third best team in the SEC? No. I don’t. Not even close. But they are 2-0 in the league and are still unbeaten. The next challenge for this team will being able to win games with the bulls-eye on their chests, because they are ranked in the Top 20 nationally now. It’s hard to hide being Cinderella when you have that little number next to your school’s name now.

4. Georgia – Georgia and Florida are a virtual tie to me at this point. But I go with UGA here, because I don’t know about you, but I’d rather lose to Bama than to Ole Miss.

5. Florida – I looked on the schedule and tried to rationalize this loss. I looked at the schedule and tried to see if they were looking ahead to an opponent next week. But then I saw they were playing Arkansas and decided #5 was the spot for the Gators.

6. Auburn – Auburn didn’t look good — again running their spread offense, but won 14-12 against Tennessee. But be forewarned, Auburn is not done losing games this season. Their offense is a mess.

7. Ole Miss – I thought the near miss against Wake Forest was just attributed to Wake being overrated (see Saturday’s loss to Navy). But I guess I was wrong. Houston Nutt is good for one upset a year.

8. Kentucky – Quick: Name me the four unbeaten teams in the SEC. Kentucky is one of them.

9. South Carolina – They won against UAB, although they really didn’t look so hot doing it. But a win is a win.

10. Tennessee – 1-3 start for the Vols. Wow. Who woulda thunk it? Umm…? ME! I predicted this 1-3 start in my preseason game in August.

11. Mississippi State – State played reasonably well against LSU. They just have no resemblance of an offense. For every play they gain 4-5 yards, they have another where they lose 4-5.

12. Arkansas – Terrible in every sense of the word. Period.

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OK, guys.

This will be a little bit of a changeup. But the Sunday Night Football game is boring me and I am curious.

You all know about the Madden Curse, where the player on the cover of Madden has a bad year, or whatever?

If you do not know what I am talking about, here is a picture:

You see Eddie George (quickly extinct), Daunte Culpepper (injured then extinct), etc… All of the above players had significant falls off the faces of the earth or injuries in the season they were on the cover of the game.

But the point of the story is the evolution of the jinx. It appears to me that it has a new strain this year.

Here is the coverboy this year.

At least so far Favre hasn’t been jinxed. He leads the world in touchdown passes and has been great for the 2-2 Jets.

But this is where the new strain of virus comes into play.

Alas, it’s Ed Hochuli. The NFL’s “strong” referee.

Now, correct me if I am wrong on this one, as I am in noway an investigative reporter. But I know Hochuli is on Madden this year. I see him every day when I play it on my PS3 consul.

So if this is his first year on the game, then is he the guy who got the ‘jinx-bug’ this year?

We all know the story with the Chargers/Broncos fumble. But he made an equally bad call yesterday, calling a roughing the passer penalty (helmet-to-helmet) hit in the Bucs/Packers game yesterday that replay showed was clearly NOT a helmet-to-helmet hit.

So just some food for thought and something to pay attention to as they year goes on. 🙂

And if any of you do not play Madden or video games, then I apologize for wasting the last 3 minutes of your life.

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Headlines:

Brew-Crew seal NL Wild Card – My Cowboys lost. But it is still a good day in Appt 207 today, because the Brewers won and the Mets lost, thus knocking the Mets out of playoff contention.

Favre’s six TDs lead Jets to win – I just knew Favre would have a big game today. (see yesterday’s post) Dude just shows up when it seems like the odds are out of his favor.

White Sox win, now have to win 2 more to get to October – The Sox have to beat the Tigers today to complete their regular season tied with the Twins. Once they do that, then they have to play the Twins in a playoff game on Tuesday to see who goes to the playoffs. Do I think they can do it? I don’t know. But I hope so, because they have a chance to make noise, unlike the Twins who are an annual easy out for someone in the AL.

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Alas, it’s playoff baseball time — one of my favorite times of the year!

That’s all for me, people.

Happy Monday!

Tiger fans,

LSU rolled to 4-0 on Saturday with a 34-24 win against Mississippi State on Saturday.

Jarrett Lee started the first game of his collegiate career and looked very sharp, completing 18-of-27 passes for 261 yards and a touchdown to lead LSU to the win.

You know my style, folks. If you guys want a play-by-play analysis, go to lsusports.net or to espn.com. I assume the majority of my readers watched the game from home or attended in person, so you know how it went down.

Now let me give to you my 2-cents.

1. Jarrett Lee can potentially be ‘something else’- Sure, he makes the occasional “what are you thinking?” play. But he is a freshman (and will be one all season). He is far ahead of JaMarcus Russell in his freshman season and that kid turned out to be quite a player for LSU, right? Lee is a special, special player and will be a very good one for LSU.

2. Walking wounded – The bye week comes at the right time for LSU as Charles Alexander, Ricky Jean-Francois and Darry Beckwith are all beat up on the LSU defense. 13 days to lick wounds before Florida will be good for those guys heading into that Florida game.

3. Hatch MIA – Hatch did not practice all week as a precaution from last weekend’s concussion against Auburn. With Lee separating himself more and more with each moment, it’s unclear what the plan is at quarterback, but Hatch did not play because he was injured. Not because he was benched. He was an emergency quarterback only.

4. Holliday at WR, WRs as a whole – Trindon Holliday made the first catch of his CAREER tonight, catching a little hook from Lee. Kinda hard to believe with the Tigers heavy utilization of the bubble screen that tonight would be his first, but it was. Terrance Toliver also got his first catch of the year tonight, catching a bomb from Lee. If LSU can get that steady play from the Chris Mitchell’s and Terrance Toliver’s of the world, that makes life easier for Brandon LaFell who is clearly Lee’s favorite target.

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Folks may be saying that LSU ‘won ugly’. But I’ll tell you what, I’d sure rather win ugly than . . . LOSE like many of the other teams in the Top 10 did in this college football week.

No. 1 USC, gone

No. 3 Georgia, gone

No. 4 Florida, gone

No. 9 Wisconsin, c’ya later

That’s right. Four in the Top 10 bite the bullet this week, with three of the four losing to unranked teams.

What a weekend like this one does is opens the flood gates. Now back in the mix are teams like Ohio State and even all of the teams who lost today, because it is more and more likely by the minute that a one-loss team will make the title game again this year.

Of all the ‘one-loss’ teams, I like USC the best. I know, it’s the easy pick. But they will not play a ranked opponent again this season and they should (if they play well) cake-walk to 11-1.

I normally give you my SEC top 12 on Monday, so I will throw a curveball tonight and give you my national Top 5.

1. Oklahoma – They have stomped on the throats of everyone they have played this year.

2. Alabama – I go with Bama number 2, because I think they have a similar resume to LSU. Both have 2 quality wins. Bama beat Clemson and Georgia. LSU beat MSU and Auburn. But I think Beating Georgia in their place outweighs beating Auburn in theirs, so I go with the Tide #2.

3. LSU – Where LSU and Bama are in relation to one another is fairly irrelevant as they will settle this argument on the field in November.

4. Texas – The quiet team on the block right now is Texas who just silently keeps plotting along unbeaten.

5. Missou – Missou did not look very sharp in their last game out, so they drop back. But again, where there are in relation to OU and Texas is irrelevant also as they will likely play the winner of OU and Texas’s game in the Big 12 Title Game.

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Headlines:

Santana pulls Mets into stalemate with Brewers – I’ve said a lot of rotten things about Santana, just because I am not a fan of the Mets. But man, we he ever nails yesterday, pitching a complete game, shutout on short rest when his team’s season was on the line.

Favre questionable, expected to play – The streak alas will live on. Favre usually plays his best when he is hurt or when all of his team’s chips are on the table. Lucky for Jets’ fans both cases apply tomorrow as 1-3 spells doom for the Jets.

Phils take home NL East – It seems the Phillies always get lost in the mess that is the Mets. But they are 2-time NL East Champions now, so much love to those guys.

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YouTube Video of the Day:

Wow, Wow, Wow.

Happy Sunday, Tigers!

GAMEDAY:

VS.

It’s gameday, game four of a 12-day murderer’s row that college football calls the Southeastern Conference.

We have broken down this game all week (although not as thoroughly as I would have liked due to other obligations), but I think it is pretty clear that LSU is a heavy favorite in this game.

I think this game will be won and loss on third downs.

Mississippi State is 107th out of 119 DI teams in third down offense. If LSU can hold down Anthony Dixon on first and second downs and force 3rd and 7’s or 3rd and 8’s and force the inconsistent Bulldog quarterbacks to throw the ball, I think LSU will be able to shut down Mississippi State’s offense cold.

On the LSU side of the football, I think LSU will look to run the football in an attempt to open up the passing game later. If LSU can gash Mississippi State early and force that 8th or 9th man into the box, then you will see quarterbacks Jarrett Lee and Andrew Hatch (whom I expect to both play) go to the playaction and then hit guys like Brandon LaFell and Demetrius Byrd down the field for long gains.

It’s really that simple in my opinion. I know it sounds basic. I know it sounds simple. But Mississippi State has a solid defense. But when their offense goes three-and-out three and four times in a row like they sometimes do, then it wears out that defense and causes major problems, especially in the second halves of games.

So with all of that being said, I think State will come out motivated, not wanting to be embarrassed again like they were last weekend against Georgia Tech. But I also think they just do not have enough depth and do not have enough offense to keep their defense fresh.

I’ll go with LSU big.

My Pick:

LSU 27

MSU 3

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There is also plenty of other good action on the slate this weekend in the conference.

Here is the SEC schedule and my picks.

Ole Miss at Florida 11:30 a.m.

My pick: Florida 41-10

Arkansas at Texas

My pick: Texas 48-13

Tennessee at Auburn

My pick: Tennessee 21-14

W. Kentucky at Kentucky

My pick: Kentucky 34-17

UAB at South Carolina

My pick: South Carolina 24-10

Bama at Georgia

My pick: Georgia 28-17

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With all of that being said, here is the list of games we will be picking from this week.

1. North Carolina +7.5 at Miami

2. Ole Miss +22 at Florida

3. Va Tech +7 at Nebraska

4. Bama +6.5 at Georgia

5. Tennessee +6.5 at Auburn

6. MSU +24.5 at LSU

7. Arkansas +27 at Texas

8. Illinois +16 at Penn State

Pro:

1. 49ers +5.5 at Saints

2. Green Bay +1 at Tampa Bay

3. Vikings +3 at Titans

4. Redskins +11 at Cowboys
Over/Under:

LSU/MSU: 39

Bama/Georgia: 45

Saints/9ers: 48.5

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The Saints return to the field on Sunday and return to the Dome to take on the upstart 49ers.

The 49ers are a young and talented team led by journeyman and former NFL Europe ringer JT O’Sullivan.

The Saints, on the other hand, are a black and blue, battered team who has fought injuries, poor defense and an even worse running game through three games this year and as a result have stumbled to a 1-2 mark.

Here are my keys and also the prediction for this game — which should be a good one.

Keys for the Saints:

1. Pass rush – JT O’Sullivan has played well. But let’s be real. Peyton Manning is not walking out of that locker room for the 49ers, so if the Saints can hassle O’Sullivan, he will make some mistakes and get the Saints some extra possessions.

2. Bush-league – Reggie Bush has done everything on offense that the Saints could have asked for. With Jeremy Shockey and Marquis Colston both out, Bush needs to have another 80+ yard receiving game for the Saints.

3. Inside running – It has failed the Saints each of the last two weeks. But Sean Payton could not and should not abandon running the ball between the guards. Because let’s face it, if the Saints can not figure out how to play ‘ground and pound’, then they will have a very long season, because dink and dunk football does not work in January cold and wind.

Keys for the 49ers:

1. Gore- The Saints have a bad pass defense. You know that, I know that. The 49ers know that. It’s no secret. But the key to this game is Gore and the 49ers rushing game. If Gore gets loose a few times, it could spell danger, because the Saints are in no position in the secondary to commit an extra player into the box to control the running game.

2. What you talkin’ bout, Willis? – Patrick Willis is probably the best linebacker in the NFL. And it might not really be all that close, either. With that being said, I expect to see Willis spying out on Reggie Bush when he is lined up at tailback. If he wins that matchup and controls Bush, the Saints offense may crumble.

3. Issac Bruce – Issac Bruce is the typical receiver that give the Saints fits. He’s technically sound, he’s deceptively quick and he runs good routes. O’Sullivan will be looking for Bruce early and often and if he can hit him down the field a couple of times, it could be a bad day for the secondary.

My Pick: Too much Brees. Too much Bush. Too much Saints.

Saints 31

49ers 21

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I do not focus on some of the smaller sports of LSU — to a fault of mine, because there are many small sports at LSU who have tremendous success, too.

Today, I’d like to give some love to the 7-0 and 1-0 in the SEC LSU soccer team, who defeated Mississippi State 4-1 in their first league game tonight.

These ladies are fresh off a 2007 season where they made it to the Round of 32 in the NCAA Tournament and returned the majority of that team this year.

But also adding to the mix this season is freshman keeper Mo Isom, who has been brilliant so far this season for LSU.

Here are three players to look out for as LSU makes a march through the SEC soccer season.

1. Rachel Yepez

Yepez comes into her junior season, fresh off a 2007 season when she led the SEC in goals. Look for Rachel to have another fabulous season down the stretch in 2008 with pin-point precision on her shooting and a natural knack for making the ball find the net.

2. Michelle Makasini

Makasini is one of the best midfielders in the SEC and like Yepez, is just a junior. She scored 9 goals last season and was one of a handful of Tigers to start every game for the team. She brings a ton of leadership to the table on a young roster.

3. Casey Crawford

LSU lost one of the best defenders in school history, Caroline Vanderpool to graduation following last season’s completion. But Crawford is more than capable of filling the void on an LSU defense that is currently first in the SEC and one of the best in the nation.

So good luck to those ladies as the season comes to the stretch run!

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Headlines:

USC drops a game to Oregon State – I did not get a chance to shoot on this yesterday, so I’ll take it tonight. The Trojans were outplayed, outcoached and out-everything’ed last night against a far outnumbered Oregon State team. I know ole Petey gets all the love out there in California. But to me, great coaches are not coaches who get their teams up to win big games. That’s easy to do. To me, great coaches are the ones who get their kids up to play teams you’re supposed to beat. I’m not so sure USC always does that.

Santana to go on short rest for Mets – I admire the move and this is why they got Santana in the first place. But I really do not think it matters. The Mets are a mess and are the weakest-minded professional sports team ever.

Kim up two, Garcia awaits at Tour Championship – Remember the beating Kim gave Sergio last weekend at the Ryder Cup? I am sure Sergio does, too. Should be an interesting pairing tomorrow.

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YouTube Video of the Day:

Gotta love these guys.

Tigers,

I apologize for yesterday. Technical delays altered my original plans to post the update.

Anywho, just more than 24 hours remain before LSU kicks off with Mississippi State.

The Bulldogs are a tough team to figure out. Are they as good on defense as they showed against Auburn? Or are they the team who gave up 430+ rushing yards to Georgia Tech on Saturday?

Either way, I think you will see LSU take this game very seriously as on paper and in Sunday’s newspaper, this game counts as much for an SEC Championship as the Auburn game did.

With that being said, here are my keys to victory for both teams.

Keys for LSU:

1. Front-7 – If the LSU front-7 does . . . what they always do, LSU should win this game by a comfortable margin. Mississippi State’s playbook has 5 plays. Run to the left, run to the right, run up the middle, play action fake and Hail Mary. I know obviously that sounds bad. But the general point is that they run a very basic offense.

2. Hatch/Lee limbo – LSU needs to do the best they can to keep both players’ confidence high. Because yes, Lee played great against Auburn, LSU needs to have someone to put in the fire when he has another first half like he did, because those will come. He is a freshman and will be one all year. I remind you all of the highs and lows of JaMarcus Russell his freshman year.

3. DB danger – The LSU DBs have been flawless this year. But when they’ve made mistakes, it’s been in coverage mistakes and missed assignments. For an offense who has problems scoring anyway, LSU can not give MSU a ‘cheap one’.

Keys for MSU:

1. Dixon – Anthony Dixon is the MSU offense. He is the best that they’ve got. And they will want to pound it to him early and often. If he gets in the 125, 150, 175-yard range, it’s danger for LSU.

2. Tackling – Basic, I know. But in every long run Charles Scott has had this year, it seems as though he breaks 4-5 tackles, most of them close to the line of scrimmage. If they bring Scott and the other LSU weapons to the ground when they get their hands on them, they can make things tough for the Tigers.

3. Time of possession – MSU can not beat LSU in a shootout. They just can’t. But if they slow down the game and control the clock to their favor, they can maybe win a 14-10 or a 13-6 game.

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With all of that being said, I will give some final touches on this tomorrow.

But for now, here are the games we will be picking this weekend.

NOTE: We will do 8 college this week, because with so many NFL teams having byes, there is limited selection.

1. North Carolina +7.5 at Miami

2. Ole Miss +22 at Florida

3. Va Tech +7 at Nebraska

4. Bama +6.5 at Georgia

5. Tennessee +6.5 at Auburn

6. MSU +24.5 at LSU

7. Arkansas +27 at Texas

8. Illinois +16 at Penn State

Pro:

1. 49ers +5.5 at Saints

2. Green Bay +1 at Tampa Bay

3. Vikings +3 at Titans

4. Redskins +11 at Cowboys
Over/Under:

LSU/MSU: 39

Bama/Georgia: 45

Saints/9ers: 48.5

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Headlines:

Burress to appeal suspension – You know, people have issues. As the Forrest Gump shirt says: S*it happens. But when you just don’t tell the team you’re not showing up, that’s the problem.

Troy Brown retires – Alas, one of the most underrated players in my generation. Wide out, punt returner, defensive back. You name it, Brown played it. And he has a handful of rings because of it.


Rockets match offer sheet for Landry
– Great move for my Rockets. Landry is a very key piece in the equation and losing him to the Bobcats would have been a crushing blow.

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YouTube Video of the Day:

This kid can play.

That’s it for me. Have a good one, folks.

Something amazing is happening this season in the NFL. Despite an early trade deadline this season (October 14), there are a good handful of teams who can honestly say, “this isn’t our year, we should try to stock up on draft picks for next year.” Usually by the trade deadline, teams still have a shadow of hope or a reason to believe they can turn things around. This year, the terrible are terrible and that’s that. Sure there are some exceptions. None of us know how Brady Quinn will do once the Browns realize that they gave a fat extension to a one year wonder. But that may be the only case. The Chiefs, Lions, Rams, and Bengals all are terrible in one sense or the other and should probably start thinking about making changes. Some of these teams have already done so (bye bye Matt Millen). There are others who may emerge in the next few weeks, but for now, these are the consensus bottom 4 in the NFL this season. Here are the players that should be moved from these four teams, before they waste the few years they have left, or their entire prime years, buried in the rut of mediocrity.

Kansas City Chiefs

  1. Tony Gonzalez-The guy may not want to leave, but he isn’t getting any younger, and I don’t think he’d regret if the Chiefs would do him the favor. I mean, the guy has never won a playoff game. Possible Destinations: Eagles, Bucs, Panthers, Jags, and the Bills could all go use Gonzalez as an upgrade at the position over L.J. Smith, Jerramy “run your mouth” Stevens, Dante Rosario, Mercedes Lewis, and whoever the hell Buffalo’s throwing to now days. 
  2. Larry Johnson-This back may very well be in the prime of his career, and with his bruising running style, who knows for how long. His best years shouldn’t be wasted on a team this terrible, a la Barry Sanders. Unlike Tony Gonzalez, I’m sure this guy wouldn’t oppose to being shipped out to a winner. Possible Destinations: Bucs, Packers, Texans, and even the Saints if Deuce truly is dressing out for nothing. Earnest Graham and Ryan Grant are both underachieving after big step-in roles due to injuries last year. I really can’t see Steve Slaton withstanding the beating of a whole NFL season as a feature back. 
St. Louis Rams
  1. Torry Holt-After being able to be a part of “The Greatest Show On Turf”, Holt has to be feeling like this is the greatest joke on turf (only because the Cheifs play outdoors). Holt can still contribute for a few years. I’m sure there are plenty of teams who would like a sure handed veteran like Torry on their rosters. Possible Destinations: I could roll off half the league here, but seeing as he’d only want to play for a true contender, I’d say Cowboys, Vikings, Titans, Giants, Eagles, and Chargers.
  2. Stephen Jackson-See Larry Johnson. The Rams are a good half a decade away from getting anywhere the way it looks, and those are years that Jackson doesn’t have to sit around and waste his abilities on. Possible Destinations: Same as Johnson. 
Detroit Lions
  1. Roy Williams-This guy could really help a contender with receiver problems. I’m sure he’d love it. As I’m sure everyone would love to get out of this organization. Matt Millen really knew what he was doing!! Possible Destinations: Cowboys, Vikings, Bucs, Ravens, Giants, Bears, and Titans
  2. Ernie Sims-A team with serious help needed at the defensive end could certainly use Sims at linebacker. Possible Destinations: Saints, Broncos, Browns, Cardinals, and Panthers
Cincinatti Bengals
  1. Chad Ocho Cinco-I had to laugh as I was typing that. Everyone knows that he and his counterpart T.J. need to get outta here. Carson Palmer as well but as you’ve noticed I’ve excluded QB’s from this column because of the unlikeliness of it happening. Ocho Cinco would enjoy playing for a winner again. Possible Destinations: NFC East, Bucs, Vikings, Bills, 49ers, Jags, or Titans would all welcome the often imitated but never duplicated athlete who is sometimes referred to as a cancer.
  2. T.J. Houshmanzadeh-I hope I spelled that right. T.J. should be moved for all the same reasons as Chad because he is just as good, if not better lately, than Johnson. With T.J. you get all the skills, minus the show, so leave your popcorn in the pantry for this guy folks, that may not be a bad thing. Possible Destinations: Same as Johnson. 
Well that’s all for me. Have a great day folks!
Geaux Tigers, Geaux Saints!!!!

Guys,

I come to you from the LSU library.

I have no cable at my place, which also means no internet.

But I have been told the problem will be fixed tomorrow and I will have a huge post/update then.

I apologize for the inconvenience.

I will fully preview the MSU game as well as the rest of the SEC games tomorrow. 🙂

Have a good one!

Guys and gals,

Short update today.

School is rocking my world.

But LSU had a pretty good practice day yesterday as the team moved closer to its game with Mississippi State.

I think people on the surface realize how much LSU’s dominated Mississippi State in the past, but did you guys know that the last time LSU did not beat these guys by 30+ was the 2002 season? In the SEC, that’s a very, very long time for one team to get taken the to woodshed.

With that being said, will the streak continue this weekend?

I don’t know.

But I can tell you that LSU fans can expect to see a very hefty dose of Charles Scott yet again Saturday. The Bulldogs gave up 430, count ’em, 430 rushing yards to Georgia Tech last Saturday, so I expect the good ole fashioned ground and pound to be back in effect Saturday.

What hurts the Bulldogs so much in this game in my opinion is just that their style is a style impossible to have if you hope to succeed against LSU.

I said this yesterday, but I’ll say it again. Who in this country can line up with a base power-eye formation and run it down LSU’s gut? No one. But that is what MSU will try to do Saturday.

I got a couple of emails in the past few days, so I will answer them here and leave things at that for today.

Q.  What do you see as the ratio for the quarterbacks this weekend?

A. I see Hatch starting. I see Lee coming in around the end of the 1st quarter/beginning of the 2nd quarter during LSU’s 3rd or so possession. A couple of things about this situation. First off, I hear people saying they want to dump Hatch out of the rotation entirely. That right now, I’d think would be the worst possible thing to do. Yeah, he might not have played as well as Lee in that one half against Auburn. But let us not forget that a lot of you same folks were saying Hatch was the better QB through two games. My basic point is this: They are both inexperienced. They will both have their good and their bad days. Keep both of their confidences as high as possible so that if it’s Lee’s turn to get nicked up or to have a bad game, then Hatch will be ready to rock ‘n’ roll and vice versa, so to answer the question, I see both being in the cards again Saturday and also for the rest of the season.

For those who follow me the various places I visit, you know I am probably the biggest Lee supporter out there. But with that being said, he is not nowhere near as good as he played in the 2nd half of that game. He is a blend of the 1st half and the 2nd half or AKA above average.

And another reason why we will see Hatch a lot Saturday is the schedule. Look at the offensive playbook in the North Texas and Appalachian State games and then look at it against Auburn. Against Auburn there were wrinkles, trick plays, etc… AKA it was the whole playbook.

With Florida up next on the schedule, I don’t think Miles will want to overtip his hand to the Gators on Saturday if Lee is indeed the guy they are trying to turn it over to.

Q. Will Charles Scott get invited to the Heisman ceremony this year?

A. You know, he probably should, but the odds are not in his favor. You know Tebow is a lock. You know Knowshon Moreno is a lock. Scott would be the 3rd SEC player to get invited and three from one league is very, very rare. I will say this, though: If he opts to come back for a senior season, I think he will be one of a select 3-4 guys who will be a favorite to win it. What hurts him right now, though is that in the preseason if you would have asked sportswriters to make a Top 100 list, he probably wouldn’t have even been on it. That’s just too much ground to make up.

Q. Best team in the country right now?

A. Florida. They’ve always one of the best and most feared offenses. Now they’re playing a little defense, too.

Best coach in the country right now?

A. Miles. I really believe that, too. I grade coaching on winnning, recruiting and ability to control a locker room (grades, chemistry, etc…).

Part I: Miles wins at an amazing clip (38-6 at LSU)

Part II: Just look at the talent on the field when LSU plays. Someone is getting those players.

Part III: Those kids would die for this guy on Saturday if him told them to. And I guess it makes sense when you think about it from a college kid’s perspective.

1. NFL – He has sent countless tons to the NFL (where all these guys want to end up)

2. Method to Madness – Has there been a gamble that this guy has made in his career at LSU that hasn’t worked? From Day 1 with the fake punt against Zona State, he has been rolling the dice and hitting snake eyes. After 4 years of doing that, you have to realize it’s not luck anymore.

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Anyway, today was a little different. I hope you enjoyed the change up. And also your Wednesday!

With Auburn now behind them, the LSU football team has turned its attention to its next opponent, Mississippi State.

The big questions that I’ve been getting after the Auburn game are mostly revolved around the quarterback situation.

I know that Jarrett Lee is the hero of today and is the toast of the town. But I do not think he is as dominant as he played in the second half. With that being said, he is nowhere near as bad as he played in the first half either. So what I think you will see is that he will reside somewhere in the middle for the rest of the season.

With that being said, I think Andrew Hatch will continue to start — at least for the time being. Hatch seemed OK today and I think he will be more than ready to go by Saturday.

In Mississippi State, LSU is facing a tricky team. By that, I mean that they have I think very good talent and can play with the best in the league, much like they did against Auburn.

But I just think this is a great matchup for LSU in that the LSU front 7 is so talented and so deep that traditional power-eye offenses will always have a tough time moving it on the Tigers, no matter how good their system is.

I think that is why in recent years we’ve seen LSU totally dominate this series, winning the last 3 games by a combined 130-24.

What will be LSU’s biggest challenge Saturday will be going out and playing with the level of intensity they had against Auburn. There is a bye week next week before Florida 2 weeks from now. So let’s see if the Tigers will be going all-out, or if some guys will be racing to the finish line to get the break.

Much more on this game later in the week.
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Another NFL week is in the books. Here is my Week 4 power rankings. With 3 games in the books for most, there is no Indy, no Jacksonville, no New England and no San Diego in my list. Wow. Just another year in the parity-driven NFL.

Here’s the list.

1. Dallas Cowboys- 3-0 with three wins against fairly quality opponents. It’s becoming them 1 and everyone else a distant 2.

2. New York Giants – It’s hard to put them 2, because they did struggle to beat the Bengals at home. But they are easily the second best of the unbeaten.

3. Tennessee Titans – I am really beginning to think this team is for real. They have all the elements to win in January: steady quarterback, defense and a pound ‘em running game.

4. Buffalo Bills – The Bills continue their solid start with a win against the Raiders, albeit not a very impressive one.

5. Denver Broncos – I will put Denver at 5. And I know you all probably think they should be higher. But they just don’t play enough defense to compete late in the season. They could just as easily be 1-2 right now. No one gets the breaks to go their way all season and their poor break may come in a more valuable game later in the season.

6. Philadelphia Eagles – Near miss against Dallas, then a win against Pittsburgh shows me the Eagles are back and ready to rock ‘n’ roll.

7. Tampa Bay Bucs – To have a great season you have to: 1. Dominate at home 2. Play good defense 3. Win when you don’t play your best. Tampa has done all three, stealing one from Chicago yesterday.

8. Baltimore Ravens – The Ravens are 2-0 and are up to their usual tricks of scoring on defense and creating havoc on opposing quarterbacks. Do they have enough offense to keep it up? We’ll see.

9. Green Bay Packers – Aaron Rodgers is no Brett Favre. But Green Bay really could have played better Sunday night and still only lost by 11 to the NFL’s best.

10. Pittsburgh Steelers – It’s always tough to win in Philly, so there is no shame in that loss. There is shame, however in Mike Tomlin not kicking a 40-yard field goal with his team down 9 points and rather going for it on 4th and 10 and not getting any points with just a minute to play.
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Headlines:

Shockey to miss 3-6 weeks – This is a big, big blow to the Saints who just can not catch a break this season. No Shockey, no Colston, no defense. No playoffs? We’ll have to wait and see. But it doesn’t look good.

Kiffin remains Raiders coach . . . For now – I think he would probably be better off n the long run if they did fire him. The Raiders are a mess. And I hate to say this so bluntly, but they will be that way until Al Davis gives up the team, whether by death or illness or whatever it will take for him to act in the best interests of the organization and move on.

Cubs clinch home-field advantage, beat the Mets – Both the Mets and Brewers are doing their best to fold like tents to miss out on the playoffs. It will be run to see which team bus has better acceleration speed in reverse, because that is what it will take as these teams back into the playoffs.

YouTube Video of the Day:

Will we maybe see this kid on the field this weekend? Is he even alive after this hit?

That’s all for me.

Have a good one!

It was a close week with everyone separated by just 2 games.

Here is the breakdown.

Richard:

4-2 college
2-4 pro
2-1 over/under

Total: 8-7

Cody:

3-3 college
3-3 pro
1-2 over/under

Total: 7-8

Casey:

College: 5-1
Pro: 2-4
Over/Under: 1-2

Total: 8-7

Boura:

College: 3-3
Pro: 4-2
Over/Under: 2-1

Total: 9-6

Here are our standings through week 3.

Casey: 26-19 (57.7%)

Richard: 25-20 (55.5%)

Cody: 24-21 (53.3%)

Boura:15-15 (50.0%)

Remember, we are deciding the winner by WINNING PERCENTAGE, so all four of us have a real chance to pull this thing out as we head toward the mid season point.

Flickr Photos

September 2008
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