Chat with Pat Forde
Welcome to SportsNation! On Tuesday, ESPN.com columnist Pat Forde stops by to chat some college football.
Among other things, Forde covers college football and basketball for ESPN and ESPN.com.
Send your questions now and join Forde Tuesday at 2 p.m. ET!
Pat Forde (2:00 PM)
Hello, and welcome to GAME WEEK! At last. If you're half as happy as I am, you're pretty happy. Let's get to the questions.
Yahtzee (Kansas City)
How do you see Brian Kelly's first year at Notre Dame playing out? I think they have the talent to be explosive on offense immediately. But do you think they will have enough size on the defensive line to be successful in the 3-4? If nothing else Kelly will save us from having to listen to egotistical "offensive mastermind" speeches.
Pat Forde (2:02 PM)
Yahtzee: I think Notre Dame can have a Top 25 season. Plenty of talent at the skill positions offensively, and I believe Crist will have a very good year. Questions are on the lines, offensive and defensive. I think ND will score a lot and give up pretty much, too. My guess at the record: 9-3 or 8-4. Michigan game looms large, as usual.
Eric (Princeton, NJ)
My buckeyes are a popular pick this year, and much of the speculation on their chances revolve on Pryor's consistency. I hope he can be the Rose Bowl version of himself, but it's hard to say I am confident in that happening. Do you think he will play like he did in the Rose Bowl this year?
Pat Forde (2:03 PM)
Eric: That is THE question with Pryor -- was that a light bulb coming on and staying on, or just a flash of light? Because for most of the season the debate was whether he made a mistake going to OSU, whether he was working hard enough to develop, and whether the offense suited his ability. I'm going to predict a pretty solid step forward for Pryor this year and a very good year for the Buckeyes.
Dave Yurick (West Palm, FL)
Pat, do you think that Ingram being hurt actually hurts Alabama or do you think that Nick Saban will successfully pay, I mean play, another RB in his place (Richardson)? Also, what year do you think Saban will leave for Michigan?
Pat Forde (2:05 PM)
Dave: Ingram has the best backup in America in Trent Richardson. So it's bad for Ingram's Heisman defense but not a disaster for the Tide. Think they'll be fine for the first couple of games.
Rough week for the ol' alma mater Pat. What are you expecting from the Pinkel Panthers this year?
Pat Forde (2:06 PM)
Matt: Terrible week for the old alma mater (Missouri, if you're wondering). If Derrick Washington is guilty of what he's charged with, he shouldn't suit up again for Mizzou. And if that happens, this team goes from having a legit shot at Nebraska in the Big 12 North to being in a fight for distant second.
Larry (Las Vegas)
Hey Pat, BYU's deadline to declare independence is tommorrow or else they'll be "stuck" for another year in the MWC. What do you think BYU will do or should do?
Pat Forde (2:07 PM)
Larry: Don't know what BYU WILL do, but it SHOULD resist this delusional jump to independence. I don't see it working out well for the long haul -- especially since the WAC is all but crumbling as a possible spot for both the non-revenue sports and also as a scheduling vehicle for football. Stay with the Mountain West.
Pat Forde (2:09 PM)
Dave: Given the grease fire in Chapel Hill, I agree with putting North Carolina at the top of the overrated list. Not sure about Penn State as overrated. And Pitt has to prove it can handle expectations. As for underrated: Wisconsin looks dangerous to me. So does Oregon if the young QB comes through. And Georgia.
Sean (Pascagoula, MS)
4D, What odds do you give my Gators of walking into BDS and winning? Thanks
Pat Forde (2:10 PM)
Sean: That game is Oct. 2. Can't we enjoy September first?
How much longer can teams like Alabama, North Carolina, and Ole Miss expect to wait to see if their star players are going to be cleared by the NCAA? We are only days away!
Pat Forde (2:12 PM)
Dan: I'm sure the NCAA is working as diligently as possible to have rulings in time for the season openers -- but the NCAA isn't beholden to meet a team's schedule deadline. If it takes longer, it takes longer. And those schools will have to decide whether to withhold players or play them and risk having to vacate games involving ineligible players. My guess is that the schools will withhold players if they don't have a ruling before kickoff. But it could be a newsy week in that regard.
You picked Boise over Bama in the BCS Championship game. Could you explain how Boise will over come the size disadvantage on the Offensive (15lbs) and Defensive (30lbs) lines? Also, How are Boise's undersized Corners (5-11 190, 5-10 177) going to cover Julio Jones (6-4 220)?
Pat Forde (2:13 PM)
Rett: Welllll, right now that matchup is on paper. If they get around to playing it in January, we'll address those specifics. But I will say this, for everyone worried about the size of Boise's lines: they were outsized against Oregon and TCU last year, too. How did those turn out?
How do you see the Boise State vs Virgina Tech game?
Pat Forde (2:15 PM)
Doug: I'm on the Boise bandwagon for as long as it rolls, so I'm picking the Broncos there. Chief concerns to me are how Boise does with new DC, and containing a fantastic trio of VT running backs: Ryan Williams, Darren Evans and the revelation of August, third-stringer David Wilson. I believe Boise will move the ball against an inexperienced VT defense. Also, BSU must avoid giving up anything to the VT special-teams juggernaut.
Adam R (Connecticut)
Pat, what odds do you give my Huskies o0f winning the Big East and getting to their 1st-ever BCS bowl? And if they don't win it this year, are they improving enough under Edsall to contend over the next several years?
Pat Forde (2:17 PM)
Adam: Should be a very good year for UConn in what I think will be a very balanced Big East. I think four teams could win it: Cincy (my pick), Pitt, WVU and UConn. Huskies need a playmaker at WR and some seasoning in the secondary, but the potential is there. Michigan game is a fascinating opener. I'll take the Huskies in an upset there.
Slick Phil (Alabama)
What is you favorite aspect of college football?
Pat Forde (2:18 PM)
Phil: Just one favorite aspect? Wow. I will say, I love walking to the stadium on game day, through all the tailgaters, hearing the band, etc. Love the color and the excitement of all the fans. And of course, the games aren't bad, either.
Haven't hard a lot of talk about one of the better games of the opening weekend - Pitt @ Utah. What do you think of this game? A very good Pitt team vs. a Utah team that is always good at home.
Pat Forde (2:19 PM)
Matt: Agree -- maybe the sleeper game of the week. I think Utah will be tough at home. If the Utes can keep Dion Lewis from going wild, they can win.
Andrew (Montgomery, AL)
Give me one team that should on upset alert this weekend. (Excluding the higher ranked teams in the Top 25 matchups)
Pat Forde (2:22 PM)
Andrew: Pitt, for one. And although I don't see USC losing at Hawaii, that's a funky enough opener that it could be closer than some folks think.
Mitchell (Ballground, GA)
Will Georgia Tech have a down year after the graduation of so many good playmakers? Or does Paul Johnson prove he's a mastermind again and win games we don't expect?
Pat Forde (2:23 PM)
Mitchell: Replacing DeMairyus(sp?) Thomas will be tough, but I think Anthony Allen has a big season in Dwyer's spot. I like Tech to be right in the mix in a very tough division once again.
Top 3 conferences in the nation this year?
Pat Forde (2:24 PM)
Brian: Ahhh, the old conference ranking question. I will say 1) SEC, more for strength at the top than anything else; 2) Big Ten, with three big-time teams in Ohio State, Wisconsin and Iowa; 3) Big 12, also with three heavyweights -- if Nebraska's offense improves.
Who are the best coaches in the country? Not the best recruiters, but the ones who get the most out of their players and plan the best game? In the NE, Schiano and Edsall seem excellent but who are some of the others?
Pat Forde (2:26 PM)
Ivan: Tough question, but good question. Chris Petersen is an extraordinary tactician and maximizer of talent. Nick Saban is obviously tremendous. Urban Meyer as well. I'd take those three right now ... but things can change.
What game are you looking forward to most this year?
Pat Forde (2:28 PM)
David: If I had to pick JUST ONE ... I'll probably take Monday night (Boise State-Va Tech). So much riding on that game, including the potential for a historic shot to the established BCS power structure that favors teams from the big-six conferences. Second choice: Florida-Alabama. Third choice: Texas-Nebraska, though it might not be as big as Red River.
Matt (Washington, DC)
What is the top place to eat ever listed in one of your articles?
Pat Forde (2:29 PM)
Matt: Impossible question to answer. But as an avowed rib eater, I do have soft spots for Dreamland and Rendezvous.
shawn (new orleans)
lsu has a chip on its shoulder
Pat Forde (2:30 PM)
LSU should. Nobody thinks the Tigers are going to be very good this year. Myself included.
Pat, do you have an opinion on the issue of over signing recruits and then cutting the roster to get to the required 85?
Pat Forde (2:31 PM)
Stephanie: Yes. Hate the practice. Want to see it abolished. It's a terrible thing to do to young men, trifling with their futures.
Mike (NE Ohio)
What do you think about a Big 10 title game revolving between Soldier Field, Cleveland Browns Stadium, and Lucas Oil Stadium? If you push for the idea, I can take you out for some great BBQ ribs in Cleveland.
Pat Forde (2:32 PM)
Mike: Thanks for the offer, but gotta have Lambeau in the mix as well. I like the idea of an outdoor game, given the Big Ten's cold-weather heritage.
Forde, how can you say that a team is overrated or underrated before a game has been played? Doesn't that lend itself to the fact that rankings shouldn't occur until games are played?
Pat Forde (2:33 PM)
Marc: Rankings should ideally not occur until after a month of games. But here in the real world, they do, so we have teams that are at least in theory overrated and underrated. Then they play, and we find out.
Pat.. Will USC be back to being a monster by 2017? I want to see a mean match up with my Longhorns! Hook em!
Pat Forde (2:35 PM)
Adam: Put it this way -- the kids who will be playing in that game are in 6th and 7th grade right now. So I'm going to say I have no idea how USC will look in 2017.
Jay (Bloomington, IN)
Give me your top three preseason for the Heisman + a sleeper.
Pat Forde (2:36 PM)
Jay: Operating on my preseason premise that Boise is going to win it all, I have Kellen Moore on top of my Heisman list. Followed by DeMarco Murray and Case Keenum. I would have had Ingram on there until today. And let me state: there is nothing quite so useless as a late-August Heisman list.
Tate ((Sunnyvale, CA))
How do you see Cal's new defense fairing in the very offensive minded Pac-10?
Pat Forde (2:38 PM)
Tate: If they can find a pass rusher to replace Alualu, I think the defense will be pretty good. I was disappointed in the Cal secondary last year, expected better. Probably a good time to change coordinators and get a fresh perspective.
Cosmo (Anytown, USA)
Best case scenario for Penn State this season?
Pat Forde (2:40 PM)
Cosmo: Best case is win 'em all. But I don't see that happening with trips to Bama and Ohio State and Iowa. I'd say realistic best case is 10-2, with reality more likely to be 9-3 or 8-4.
Are you the guy in those commercials (for a bank) that's always ripping off those kids?
Pat Forde (2:40 PM)
Dave: No. But you win the prize as the 1 millionth person to ask. I really need a cut of that guy's royalties.
Chris (Columbus, OH)
Name your top 5 stadiums to visit on game days?
Pat Forde (2:42 PM)
Chris: 1. Sanford Stadium, Georgia; 2. Notre Dame Stadium; 3. Tiger Stadium, Baton Rouge; 4. Ohio Stadium; 5. Nippert Stadium (underrated little on-campus jewel).
Forde, what do you think about the Sooners this year? Do they have a shot at a major BCS Bowl/Conference Championship?
Pat Forde (2:43 PM)
Peter: I've gone back and forth on whether the Sooners or Horns are the team to beat in the Big 12, but I'll say OU right now. More skill-position firepower than Texas. If they fill some holes, they'll win the league and have a shot to play for it all.
Nippert Stadium and no Memorial Stadium in Lincoln????Are you insane???
Pat Forde (2:44 PM)
Alex: That's for my shrink to decide. You been to Nippert recently?
Soon to be Uga VIII (Athens)
Who is the fairest mascot of all?
Pat Forde (2:45 PM)
Sorry, UGA. It's Ralphie.
Your top 3 Passing QBs in 2010?Best Dual-Threat QB?
Pat Forde (2:47 PM)
Alex: Good question. Passing: Kellen Moore of Boise State, Case Keenum of Houston, Andrew Luck of Stanford. With Ryan Mallett very much in the mix. Dual threat: Pryor, Tyrod Taylor of Va Tech, and Colin Kaepernick of Nevada. No disrespect to Joshua Nesbit, but he needs to throw it better.
Who do you have winning in the UK vs UL game on Saturday?
Pat Forde (2:47 PM)
Mike: Kentucky, in a pretty close one. I'd say the line (three points) sounds about right.
If Ricky Stanzi's stats are 27 Tds 5 Ints and around 3100 yards at the end of the year, where do you see the Hawks finishing?
Pat Forde (2:48 PM)
Josh: About 11-1. But that would be a massive upgrade over last season. I don't think Stanzi has those numbers in him.
Landon (Ft. Hood, TX)
Pat I know that Cam has not played a down yet for Auburn, but how can you leave him off the list as Best Dual-Thrat QB?
Pat Forde (2:49 PM)
Landon: Because he has not played a down yet at Auburn.
It seems no commentators ever really like visiting Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor. Could you honestly let me know what you think it is missing and what can be done for it to show up on those favorite stadium lists?
Pat Forde (2:51 PM)
Jeff: That's a very fair question. Last time I was there was pre-upgrade, and the place -- while impressive in its size -- is pretty bland. I want to go back now that it's been modernized a bit and check it out -- which means I need Michigan to be good enough to schedule a trip.
You haven't discussed offensive linemen yet. Who is the best offensive lineman and what team has the best OL as a whole?
Pat Forde (2:52 PM)
Todd: Some love for the big uglies. Tough to identify the single best lineman, but I think Wisconsin might have the best O-line in the country. That's the biggest reason why I have the Badgers as a sleeper national contender. Gabe Carimi (LT) is probably the best of that unit.
MG (Cedar Falls, IA)
Who is the best "players coach" in the country?
Pat Forde (2:53 PM)
MG: That's always loosely defined, but I'm going with Mack Brown. His guys seem to love playing for him and he has a great knack with people of all ages and demographics.
pimp c (tx)
what is your favorite college football rivalry? and, do you like the neutral site for top rivalries or home and home each year?
Pat Forde (2:55 PM)
Pimp: Fave is probably Alabama-Auburn, because it just consumes the state all year long. Michigan-Ohio State is more grand, but there are other things to do in those states. In Alabama, the Iron Bowl is pretty much it. Love OU-Texas, and love it in neutral site. Same with Cocktail Party. If Notre Dame and USC ever both achieve power status simultaneously again, as they did in the 70s, I'd take it over anything and everything else.
No love for Locker??? but as i digress how do my Huskies fare against BYU???
Pat Forde (2:56 PM)
Tyler: Not a love for Locker, no. He's got to prove it to me this year. His career numbers are unimpressive and his record is 9-20. As for BYU-Washington: definitely one of the most interesting games of the week. Slight edge to Cougs at home.
Baron (Large, PA)
Favorite All-Time College Football Player? Thanks
Pat Forde (2:58 PM)
Baron: I grew up in the 70s, which colors my perception. But I'll go with Joe Montana. He led so many insane comebacks at Notre Dame. He was the master of playing like junk for 3 1/2 quarters, then making every play to pull out a game. He was magic. Best player I have covered since I came to ESPN is probably Adrian Peterson.
Aaron (Rhode Island)
Top Defense? Defensive player? Go Hawks!
Pat Forde (3:00 PM)
Aaron: Top defense SHOULD have been North Carolina ... but we'll see how many of those guys are suited up. I predict they're missing a bunch. Given that, I'd say Iowa and Ohio State will both be really good again on that side, as will Nebraska (even without Suh).
Greg Reid said he is going to get "crunk" this weekend against Samford. What does get "crunk" mean to 4D?
Pat Forde (3:01 PM)
Jim: It means he's going to run back at least one kick for a TD. Loved watching that little guy last year. I think he might be the most exciting returner in college football this year.
Pat Forde (3:02 PM)
And that's the end of my very exciting return to Dash writing and chatting. Hope you all enjoyed it, thanks for stopping in with questions. We'll do it all year.