Chat with Ivan Maisel
Welcome to SportsNation! On Wednesday, ESPN.com college football writer Ivan Maisel stops by for a chat on the 2009 season.
Maisel is a senior writer for ESPN.com. In addition to covering college football for the site, he contributes to ESPN's SportsCenter, ESPNEWS, ESPN Radio and ESPN The Magazine. He also contributes to ESPN.com's golf coverage.
Send your questions now and join Maisel Wednesday at 2 p.m. ET!
Ivan Maisel (2:01 PM)
Hi, everyone. Missed you last week. I was swamped by stories. Blame my editor. Here we go...
Cory Walthall (Fort Worth)
John Junker said they wanted the 2 highest ranked teams but did not choose TCU-Cincy so why are you so sure of no conspiracy. I know of the business angle but does not pass the smell test
Ivan Maisel (2:03 PM)
Think about it, Cory. Junker's in the business of selling tickets, and filling hotel rooms and restaurants. Boise State is a proven commodity from three years ago. Cincinnati is not and is two time zones away.
Mike (Beckley, WV)
Have you heard any information regarding WVU assistant Doc Holliday being offered or accepting the Marshall HC position?
Ivan Maisel (2:03 PM)
I've heard the rumor. It makes sense. But if we could confirm it, we would have confirmed it.
Ivan, Who is the all time best hesiman winner?
Ivan Maisel (2:04 PM)
I'd say Barry Sanders had the best single season in 1988. His numbers are incredible.
Hi Ivan. How are you? Has there every been a NC declared to a team that lost to the number 2 team and both teams had one loss(besides ND and FSU)? Thanks
Ivan Maisel (2:05 PM)
Nothing comes to mind. I'd have to look it up.
Tom (South Bend)
Whats up with saying ND is better off in the Big Ten in the three point stance? We have a national student body, a national alumni distribution, and a national TV contract--and right now are playing a national schedule. Why would we ever join a midwest football conference?
Ivan Maisel (2:07 PM)
Half your schedule is made up of the midwest football conference. It would provide stability, cut costs in the non-football sports and be smart for the same reasons that Notre Dame has looked into it for 100 years.
Steven Hill (Atlanta)
Ivan -- Tommy Tuberville + coaching vacancies = ....What's wrong with the equation? It should be a winner for some lucky program! WDE!
Ivan Maisel (2:08 PM)
Things go in cycles. This year, recycling coaches is out, and hiring younger coaches is in. Go figure. I think Tuberville will surface soon.
am i wrong to believe texas can win the title
Ivan Maisel (2:09 PM)
Not wrong at all. Texas plays good defense, knows its way around a big game, and is going to hear for a month how it's the underdog and has no chance after that Big 12 Championship Game. The 'Horns will be ready to play.
Mark (New York City)
Ivan, what do you think about the way Kelly left Cincinnati?
Ivan Maisel (2:11 PM)
I'm sure everyone wishes the circumstances were different. But it's not as if he snuck out the back door. He grabbed an opportunity to better himself and he climbed a rung on a career ladder. It would be very difficult for anyone to resist that temptation.
Cincinnati WAS not a proven commodity. They've already sold out their 17,500 allotment to the Sugar, requested an unconfirmed number of additional tickets, some even coming from Florida, and should sell those out as well. How's that for a fan base proving itself?
Ivan Maisel (2:13 PM)
That's great. But geography plays a role in these decisions. It makes more sense for Cincinnati to go to New Orleans and Boise State to go to Tempe. And I think it's good for the sport that Cincinnati is seen as the BCS heavyweight that TCU should have played.
Jerry (St. Louis)
Ivan, someone like Missouri, not looking academically, but athletically isn't it a lateral move from the Big 12 to the Big Ten for the team? Also, with Rutgers and Pitt, it's not really helping hte conference adding mediocre Big East teams, is it?
Ivan Maisel (2:15 PM)
I'd have to see balance sheets to see if it made sense for Mizzou. It's hard to see them leaving Kansas behind, much less the rest of the old Big Eight. As for Rutgers or Pitt, it's not the mediocre programs that the Big Ten wants, it's the bigger communities that would come with them. I'm not sure what Pitt would add. Penn State probably brings as much of Pittsburgh (the city) to the Big Ten as can be brought. My question is whether Rutgers brings New York.
Kevin (San Diego)
Ivan, considering that... a) the Pac-10 only placed ONE player on the AP All-American team, even though it was clearly the deepest conference this year, and b) Gerhart got snubbed for the Heisman - I mean, look at his and Ingrams stats side-by-side and consider than Toby did it against tough competition all year, while Ingram had some patsies (Chatanooga, FIU, North Texas) - do you think the anti-west coast bias is still alive and well?
Ivan Maisel (2:18 PM)
I think the Pac-10 is the best conference in the nation this year. I think Gerhart got hurt by not playing on Dec. 5, and by playing for an 8-4 team. That's not fair but that's not unusual, if you look at the history of Heisman winners. The ESPN.com All-America team, which will be out soon, has four Pac-10 players on it.
Ivan Maisel (2:19 PM)
Hey, guys, fyi, it may be funny to write the name and hometown of a celebrity when you submit a question, but it also guarantees that I won't answer it. I can't speak for others who host a chat. But it's the surest way to get me to read the next question.
Bryan (Auburn, Ala.)
Ivan, I haven't seen this mentioned much, but I think it warrents discussion. If the Big 10 expand, would the Pac-10 look to expand as well, or else risk being left behind by the Big 10, SEC, Big 12 and ACC? They seem to have more logical additions than the Big 10 anyway. Boise, Hawaii, Utah have all made BCS bowls, and BYU has been close.
Ivan Maisel (2:21 PM)
Bryan, your analysis is based on football. University presidents and athletic directors base their decisions on academics, money, size of program, and a bunch of other things. As long as I can remember, the Pac-10 presidents have been reluctant to look at expansion. When they did, in the mid-1990s, they looked at Texas and Texas A&M.
Hammer (South Carolina)
The "Orange Pride Scandal" at Tennessee. Serious violations and big trouble ahead for Vols, or much ado about nothing?
Ivan Maisel (2:24 PM)
It's not about nothing, that's for sure. If the NCAA links those hostesses to the coaches, then Tennessee will probably take a significant hit.
Saam (Los Angeles, CA)
Are Chip Kelly and Brian Kelly related?
Ivan Maisel (2:24 PM)
I don't think so. I did see them in quiet conversation at the Hall of Fame dinner last week, though.
Terry (the 'Burgh)
Ivan, polite correction: I don't think PSU brings all of Pittsburgh (that can be..) to the Big-10(11). As a Pitt alum and homer, I despise everything blue & white, even the sky (haha) ... thus the league they play in. And we are legion. That would change if Pitt joined.
Ivan Maisel (2:26 PM)
OK, I stand corrected. Maybe not all of Pittsburgh is already there. The question is, is that a big enough market to warrant making that move?
What do you think about Butch Jones being the new Coach for Cincy? . . and do you think he should coach in the Sugar Bowl?
Ivan Maisel (2:28 PM)
That worked for Brian Kelly three years ago. He said afterward that to a degree he felt like a substitute teacher with the Bearcats in the International Bowl. But it did help him.
Do you agree or disagree that Notre Dame betrayed their loyalty to integrity when they lured Brian Kelly away from his players before their biggest bowl game of their career?
Ivan Maisel (2:29 PM)
I disagree. Notre Dame, looking out for its own best interests, made an offer to Brian Kelly, who, looking out for his own best interests, accepted the offer.
Nate (Glendale, AZ)
As of 2007 Fiesta Bowl is played in Glendale....C'mon man
Ivan Maisel (2:30 PM)
Showed my age there. And I covered the Florida-Ohio State game in Glendale. You'd think I would remember that.
J.B. (Dunmore, PA)
Missouri to the Big Ten (or whatever it would be called) and TCU to the Big XII. The second part might be a hard sell to the Big XII but wouldn't both moves be good ones?
Ivan Maisel (2:31 PM)
I don't think TCU would help the Big 12 a great deal. What happens after Gary Patterson retires? What about the rest of the sports? You can't look at expansion strictly through the football lens.
What's the story with the TCU-Cincy conspiracy question? Are they implying that it could be more of a validation for TCU to play Cincy? I don't understand what difference it would make since neither Boise/Cincy are big-time powers.
Ivan Maisel (2:34 PM)
There is a thought that TCU and Boise State got thrown together to keep one of them from playing and beating an AQ team, which might confer greater legitimacy on the non AQs. I don't buy that argument.
J.B. (Dunmore, PA)
Fair point on expansion viewed through other venues but wasn't PSU to the Big Ten made almost entirely for football reasons?
Ivan Maisel (2:35 PM)
And women's volleyball.
David (Athens, GA)
So Ivan, would the Big Ten change their name to the Big Twelve... or will the Big Ten and Big XII combine to form a 24-team conference - Teams Choking Against the SEC -- TCAS?
Ivan Maisel (2:36 PM)
I want to see the Big Ten hide a "2" in the logo the way they hide the "1"s in there now.
Pac10 the best conference? Their best team got beat by a Boise State team that will get throttled by TCU.
Ivan Maisel (2:37 PM)
I wouldn't hang the entire reputation of the Pac-10 on a game played Labor Day weekend.
Ivan, what can you say about BC Frosh LB Luke "Boy Wonder" Kuechly?
Ivan Maisel (2:38 PM)
Everything I hear about Kuechly is good. Wait until he gets a couple of years in the weight room. Now he's working mostly on instinct.
CBT (Provo, Utah)
Rate your top 5 bowls this upcoming year.
Ivan Maisel (2:39 PM)
BCS Championship Game, Rose Bowl, Fiesta Bowl, Orange and either the Holiday or the Meineke.
Bobby (Boston, Mass)
Maisel, you think BC's got a chance against USC in San Fran?
Ivan Maisel (2:40 PM)
Very good chance. I don't see the Trojans very motivated to play in that game.
TCUFan (Houston, TX)
What happens after Gary Patterson retires? Ivan, the guy is not even 50 yet! I don't think there was any conspiracy about the Fiesta Bowl. No one wanted Cincy. They took no fans to the Orange Bowl last year, the coach was primed to leave and they play no defense in a game that will be Tebow's swan song. Disarray.
Ivan Maisel (2:43 PM)
I agree with your analysis. My point is, you want a program to be stronger than any one coach. If I'm a conference looking at TCU, that's the first question I would ask? What is this program without Patterson?
Why can't the Big 10 and ND work out a deal where ND still has home games on NBC and their away games on ABC/ESPN? isn't that a win/win? NBC keeps the games they have, ND keeps their money and the Big 10 gets another huge team and the ability to have a championship game?
Ivan Maisel (2:43 PM)
If I'm a Big Ten member, one for all and all for one, I don't want to make special arrangements for another member.
What are the odds of the WAC champion playing the MWC champion on a neutral field every year for a guaranteed spot in the BCS?
Ivan Maisel (2:44 PM)
What do you do when East Carolina or Houston goes 13-0 one season?
Erik (Palo Alto, CA)
Ivan, are you going to be at the Sun Bowl New Years Eve to support your alma mater in their first bowl game in 8 years?
Ivan Maisel (2:45 PM)
No, I'll be covering the Rose Bowl. I'm sure I'll watch the game. I watch every bowl I can.
Ivan Maisel (2:46 PM)
Thanks everyone. Talk to you again soon.