Tuesday, August 19, 2014
Pac-12 morning links
By Kevin Gemmell
I ain't got a dime but what I got is mine. I ain't rich, but Lord I'm free.
For most of the offseason (pretty much since Utah’s Travis Wilson was cleared for action), we’ve been working under the assumption that the Pac-12 would have 10 returning starting quarterbacks. Those assumptions were confirmed Monday when Utah coach Kyle Whittingham announced that Wilson held off a late charge from Oklahoma transfer Kendal Thompson.
At the very least, this means Utah has some depth at the quarterback spot – something that has haunted the Utes since joining the conference. And Whittingham told reporters after practice that Thompson has “earned the right to play,” meaning we’ll probably see him at some point and in assorted situations. Interpret that how you will.
Here are a few links on Wilson:
We’ll also be taking a closer look at Wilson later today in our returning starting quarterback series (and I would have gone into scramble mode had Thompson been named the starter).
Surely it’s too soon for a 2015 mock draft, right? After all, the college football season hasn’t started. But if CBS’s Dane Brugler is anywhere near accurate (he himself admits a lot of these are shots in the dark), then the Pac-12 is in for a big season.
His projection has 10 Pac-12 players going in the first round, including five in the top 11. Here’s his list:
That would be outstanding for the conference. Here’s a chart I’ve maintained for a few years (just for you, because you’re special), and as you can see, 10 players would be a considerable upgrade from what the league has seen over the last 14 years (though 2003 was a pretty good year).
Out of the playoff?
- 2014 (3): Anthony Barr (UCLA, No. 9 overall); Brandin Cooks (Oregon State, No. 20); Deone Bucannon (Washington State, No. 27);
- 2013 (5): Dion Jordan (Oregon, No. 3 overall); Star Lotulelei (Utah, No. 14); Kyle Long(Oregon, No. 20); Desmond Trufant (Washington, No. 22), Datone Jones (UCLA, No. 26).
- 2012 (4): Andrew Luck (Stanford, No. 1); Matt Kalil (USC, No. 4); David DeCastro (Stanford, No. 24 overall); Nick Perry (USC, No. 28).
- 2011 (3): Jake Locker (Washington, No. 8); Tyron Smith (USC, No. 9); Cameron Jordan (Cal, No. 24)
- 2010 (2): Tyson Alualu (Cal, No. 10); Jahvid Best (Cal, No. 30)
- 2009 (4): Mark Sanchez (USC, No. 5); Brian Cushing (USC, No. 15); Alex Mack (Cal, No. 21); Clay Matthews (USC, No. 26)
- 2008 (6): Sedrick Ellis (USC, No. 7); Keith Rivers (USC, No. 9); Jonathan Stewart(Oregon, No. 13); Sam Baker (USC, No. 21); Antoine Cason (Arizona, No. 27); Lawrence Jackson (USC, No. 28)
- 2007 (1): Marshawn Lynch (Cal, No. 12)
- 2006 (4): Reggie Bush (USC, No. 2); Matt Leinart (USC, No. 10); Haloti Ngata (Oregon, No. 12); Marcedes Lewis (UCLA, No. 28)
- 2005 (3): Mike Williams (USC, No. 10); Aaron Rodgers (Cal, No. 24); Mike Patterson (USC, No. 31)
- 2004 (3): Reggie Williams (Washington, No. 9); Kenechi Udeze (USC, No. 20); Steven Jackson (Oregon State, No. 24)
- 2003 (8): Carson Palmer (USC, No. 1); Terrell Suggs (Arizona State, No. 10); Marcus Trufant (Washington State, No. 11); Troy Polamalu (USC, No. 16); Kyle Boller (Cal, No. 19); Kwame Harris (Stanford, No. 26); Nick Barnett (Oregon State, No. 29); Nnamdi Asomugha (Cal, No. 31)
- 2002 (4, also the first year with 32 picks): Joey Harrington (Oregon, No. 3); Levi Jones (Arizona State, No. 10); Jerramy Stevens (Washington, No. 28); Robert Thomas (UCLA, No. 31)
- 2001 (4): Andre Carter (Cal, No. 7); Adam Archuleta (Arizona State, No. 20); Freddie Mitchell (UCLA, No. 25); Todd Heap (Arizona State, No. 31)
- 2000 (4): Deltha O'Neal (Cal, No. 15); Erik Flowers (Arizona State, No. 26); R.Jay Soward (USC, No. 29); Trung Canidate (Arizona, No. 31).
Speaking of early projections, it doesn’t look good for the Pac-12 as far as reaching the college football playoff this year, according to CBS Bracketologist Jerry Palm, who writes:
In this projection, the Pac-12, which is arguably the second best conference, is excluded. That is based on the thought that the league will beat each other up enough that its champion may be too damaged to get a spot. Obviously, that remains to be seen.
Of course, this story was posted prior to the news that Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller might miss the season. This certainly isn’t a time for to celebrate injuries -- even if you are a Michigan fan -- because injuries stink. But we can’t ignore the fact either that the Pac-12 benefits from a weakened Ohio State team. It’s an unfortunate fact. But a fact nonetheless.
Team notes/practice reports
Getting social with media
As far as alternate uniforms go, we’ve seen worse. And the more I look at ASU’s, the more I like them.
The San Francisco Chronicle’s new Cal beat writer, Mike Vernon, takes us inside the life of a running back for six seconds.