Friday, January 18, 2013
Pac-12 chat wrap
By Ted Miller
If you missed the Pac-12 chat on Thursday, you can read the entire thing here.
Here are some highlights.
1-800-BeADuck (the office): Any chance a surprise candidate comes out of the woodwork and steals the Oregon job from Helfrich?
Ted Miller (3:00 PM): Always a chance for anything, but my feeling is Helfrich will get tapped ASAP.
Brian (San Diego) Hi Ted. In your predictions you mention USC will have 9/10 wins, but ASU will win the South. How many wins do you predict for ASU?
Ted Miller (3:04 PM) Keep in mind USC plays 13 games and should be at least 3-1 nonconference, possibly 4-0 if Trojans get a win vs. rebuilding Notre Dame. I think ASU is a candidate for nine or 10 wins, depending on how it weathers a tough nonconference slate. I think ASU beats USC at home on 9/28, and that likely will be enough padding to put the Sun Devils ahead of the Trojans in the pecking order... the UCLA game on 11/23 at the Rose Bowl should be huge.
55USC (chongo's basement) After the pounding vaz took against texas, does he really have a shot at starting for the beavers next season?
Ted Miller (3:07 PM) yes... Riley keeps picking him over Mannion, so he might be the frontrunner. Uncertainty at QB will hold the Beavers back in the preseason rankings.
Tower of Babel (Mesopotamia) Does your prediction about the Oregon Stanford game, and therefore the National Title race change due to Kelly's hiring?
Ted Miller (3:08 PM) Well, I gave Oregon a slight edge in the North with Kelly. I now give that edge to Stanford. But let's see how things feel after spring practices.
Paul (Albany, OR) Have you noticed Oregon State has 3 defensive tackles and 2 defensive ends with I think 4 coming from the Junior College rankings? "If" they all follow through on their verbals then OSU might not be as weak up front as they look at season's end.
Ted Miller (3:10 PM) Is Simi Kuli one of those guys? You're projecting hopefully.. I don't do that with guys I've never seen play. To me, the Beavers have a major void at DT. If everything works out well there, will that put Oregon State in the North picture? Sure. But you can't just say, "We've got guys coming in..." and answer a concern.
UAmatt89 (Tucson) Ted, is there any drop off or improvement between Robert Anae and Jim Michalczik as o line coach for my cats?
Ted Miller (3:13 PM) Both are highly respected coaches. The one concern is the spread-option blocking schemes are different than what Cal had been doing. But Steve Greatwood seemed to adjust to that fairly well at Oregon. I think Rich Rod made a great hire to fill a worrisome void.
Josh (LA) UCLA has the toughest schedule in the Pac-12 next year. Agree or disagree?
Ted Miller (3:16 PM) Cal... Northwestern & Ohio State along with UCLA, USC and North schedule.... But UCLA's schedule is tough.
UAmatt89 (Tucson) Ted, your opinion here so no wrong answer: Was Manti Te'o in on it?
Ted Miller (3:19 PM) I don't know and I'm going to be careful on passing judgment one way or the other. From Duke lacrosse to this, the lesson we have to learn over and over is wait for a thorough presentation of details and facts. Do I have concerns on Te'o's position? Yes. But I also believe rushing to judgment would be a mistake.
cougarbrian (55usc's basement) Hi Ted. Any chance Leach has a change of attitude (for the better) toward his players next season?
Ted Miller (3:21 PM) You guys need to find a commenter with an attic... As for Leach, he's stubborn old coot. He will never admit he wished he did things differently. But I do think he might be slightly more careful next fall. Of course, it would be easier for him if he gets his team to play the way he wants them to. That would kill any reason to talk about walking corpses, unless he sees me walk into the room.
WDWHA (Middle of the Pack) If Triple 7 Steve runs us to another 7-6 record, does UW go coach shopping next December?
Ted Miller (3:23 PM) That's hard to say because 7-6 comes in many flavors. What if the Huskies lose a bunch of close games and have a bunch of injuries? A "bad" 7-6 that includes blowout losses and defeats to Oregon and Washington State would make Sark's situation precarious. But I think this will be a moot point when the Huskies take a step forward.
TimmyUte71 (Salt Lake City) In looking at their schedule, it looks like Utah might go 5-7 again even with improved play. Any chance they get back to a bowl game?
Ted Miller (3:27 PM) Always a chance... but I do think next year will be a challenge due to questions on both lines and a much tougher conference schedule. But what if Travis Wilson plays like Brett Hundley next fall? Then maybe you get the 6 wins
WazzuKO (Spokane, WA) Thoughts on the Dave Yost hire?
Ted Miller (3:28 PM) Proven guy who can coach offense. Seems like he's a rare guy who wanted to take a step back in coaching for a higher quality of life. He also seems like a great fit for Leach -- offensive mad scientists who are a bit quirky.
Troy (Burlington, WA) How big on impact will it be on the QB's for Washington having Tuiasosopo coaching them along with Sarkisian. With Sark probably doing throwing mechanics and Tui teaching running skills and hopefully teaching them how to bring out their leadership capabilities. They arguably have the deepest pool of QB's in the PAc-12 with Price, Miles, Lindquist, and Williams and all being in the Dual Threat Tui Mold
Ted Miller (3:32 PM) Tui was a great addition. He's a former Husky QB who led the program to its last Rose Bowl and he played in the NFL for a long time. He and Sark also seem like a good pair in terms of personality. Further, when Tui recruits to Washington, people will know it's from his heart. I suspect that he will one day become a head coach, if that's what he wants.
Trojan1981 (Office) What does USC and Kiffin need to make a complete 180 from this horrible season?
Ted Miller (3:41 PM) 1. Good defensive coordinator (Clancy is good, if that deal gets closed). 2. Kiffin should hire a play-caller so he can focus on the team like a CEO. 3. Trojans need to stay healthy. 4. And it would help if the guys play angry after all the grief they took -- fairly -- this fall.
James Jefferspin (Tulsa, OK) Ted,What does Chip Kelly's departure leave Oregon more vulnerable to in 2013- a surprise upset (something the Ducks have been very good at avoiding under Kelly) or a loss to Stanford on Nov. 7?
Ted Miller (3:48 PM) the Stanford game seems like a toss-up. You'd think that a coaching chance would make the Ducks more vulnerable to an upset. Helfrich will be a first-time head coach, so there may be some bumps along the way. You might recall Chip's first game, though that was a very good Boise State team.
chris (New Jersey) The new coach Mac at CU just got a coach of the year award. Obviously bodes well for the Buffs. How far can he take them.
Ted Miller (3:53 PM) Well, MacIntyre showed at San Jose State he can turn around a program that was in the dumps. That's certainly why he seems like a good fit in Boulder. But it's not as easy to make a big step forward in the Pac-12...
Jeff (Kansas) Is USC's post game brawl that allegedly occurred after the Sun Bowl really that big of news or is indicative of other problems? I would think that players getting down on other players happens more often than reported? No excuses. Just asking.
Ted Miller (3:57 PM) I didn't think it was a big deal, particularly with it appearing no one emerged the worse for wear. If there were "haymakers" as someone reported, there should have been some hay -- i.e., a broken nose or two. This isn't paddy-cake. Tempers rise in a locker room. Heck, how many groups of male friends never have a fight?