Chat with Ted Miller
Welcome to SportsNation! On Thursday, ESPN.com's Pac-12 blogger Ted Miller will stop by to talk some college football.
Miller has been covering college football since 1997, starting with Auburn and then heading West to Washington and the (then) Pac-10. His columns for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer won first place in 2007 APSE Best Writing contest. The Atlanta native and University of Richmond graduate presently lives with his wife in Scottsdale, Ariz.
Send your questions now and join Miller Thursday at 3 p.m. ET!
Ted Miller (3:00 PM)
Howdy.... What's on your mind as you start to go all March mad?
Ed (San Diego)
Hi Ted! The conventional wisdom among many is that USC has depth issues on the D-Line, O-Line and tailback. I concede there are depth issues at tailback but I don't see a lack of depth on O-Line with the return of Markowitz, DiPoalo and Hobbie in the mix, or on the D-Line with Townsend and Temple moving to DT/NG. I also see dead people (Trojan opponents).
Ted Miller (3:02 PM)
Do this: Give the offensive and defensive lines two injuries apiece. How you feel about the lines now? Depth won't be a problem if everyone stays healthy, but that rarely happens. I think the D-line depth is most questionable.
Jon (San Tan Valley, AZ)
Ted, why are you such a tool?
Ted Miller (3:02 PM)
James (Kaysville, UT)
Ted, with the PAC-12 establishing a scheduling relationship with the B1G Ten in the near future, do you see any exciting new rivalries in the mix?
Ted Miller (3:03 PM)
Not sure if specific teams will play enough to build a healthy dislike but I'd guess anytime you'd pair Urban Meyer with Lane Kiffin, you'd have a fun game. Or Meyer and his buddy Chip Kelly. To me, seeing a Michigan uniform in any West Coast stadium would always be great fun.
Reis (Los Angeles)
Has kiffin cut the guys he needs to cut in order to match the scholly sanction yet?
Ted Miller (3:04 PM)
ESPN LA noted he's at 76 right now, including the incoming class.... so he shouldn't have any problem, er, misplacing one guy.
Tony (Richmond, CA)
Ted, will USC and Notre Dame both live up to the hype this year, resulting in the late November matchup having serious BCS implications and being the most meaningful game in the series for the rivals in quite some time?
Ted Miller (3:06 PM)
My first response would be no because USC handled the Irish fairly well on the road in 2011 and welcomes back just about everyone... but it's hard to imagine that game won't be meaningful nationally. The Irish just need to learn to get out of their own way. Season was ruined by a handful of numb skull miscues. I don't blame Kelly for blowing a gasket.
DeAnthony Thomas (Eugene)
Im going for over 3,000 all purpose yards this season, with at least 25 TD's! Do you think that will be good enough for me to win the Heisman? Or should I actually try and go for over 3,500 all purpose yards?
Ted Miller (3:08 PM)
I think the 1,000 run-receive would be the deal-maker. And I think it's doable. And I'm sure there will be plenty of "Oh no he didn't" highlights.
Daniel (Salt Lake)
what should we expect from Utah's O and OC this year
Ted Miller (3:10 PM)
I think things will be closer to pro style than the ole spread-option, particularly with the critical need to protect Jordan Wynn. It was an interesting hire, giving a youngster like Brian Johnson the keys to the offense after Norm Chow left, but my feeling is you have to trust Kyle Whittingham's decision-making.
Jehoshaphat (Eugene, OR)
John Boyett not in your op 25. Please explain.
Ted Miller (3:11 PM)
who would you take out in order to put him in?
Dan (Tucson, AZ)
Hey Ted, what do you think is a reasonable expectation for U of A this year? Do you think there are enough pieces that, if most stay healthy, can make it to a bowl game in Rodriguez's first year?
Ted Miller (3:13 PM)
Hard to get a handle on them right now. I'd like to see them scrimmage a bit with Matt Scott running rich-rod's offense. I think 6-6 is reasonable optimism.
will keith price get over 4000 yards passing next year? or maybe he becomes more of a runner?
Ted Miller (3:15 PM)
I don't foresee 4,000, but I think he can be close to 3,500. He doesn't strike me as a runner, and I don't suspect Sark wants him taking off unless it's necessary. No spread-option ahead.
Matt Barkeley (LALA LAND)
Ted, will my big boys on defense breakout this year so I can leave SC in style and with some BLING BLING?
Ted Miller (3:16 PM)
The back-7 is strong, particularly if those young LBs take another step forward. Who provides the pass rush? And what about depth at DT?
Can Chip Kelly convince Arik Armstead to play O Line? Or can you see him being a 2 way starter at some point?
Ted Miller (3:17 PM)
Kelly won't force a move, and he's said Armstead is a D-lineman. I think he can be a good DE, too. It's just he could be a top-10 NFL draft pick as a LT.
if the Ducks lose to USC in the Colosseum, can they come back in December and win?
Ted Miller (3:19 PM)
Sure... the Ducks and Trojans will be closely matched wherever they play. To me Autzen is a bigger advantage than the Coliseum, but the Trojans won there last year. I certainly don't see any certainty that the winner in Nov. will will again in Dec.
Will (Northridge, CA)
Washington will beat Oregon this year.
Ted Miller (3:20 PM)
Really? At some point, it's going to happen again, but not sure 2012 is the year.
jeff (ann arbor)
Rumor has it that the Baylor WR who transfered to Utah is no longer with the program.Ugly rumor or sad fact?
Ted Miller (3:21 PM)
no longer there... that was a link to someone else's story... I double-checked the Utes roster and he was still on it, but was later informed he was not...
Do you think Washington has a shot against LSU??
Ted Miller (3:21 PM)
Dan (Flagstaff AZ)
Ted, Regardless of the warmth of the surface beneath Mike Rileys derriere in September, do you think a 4-8 season with a win against the Ducks enough to save him? Or is it go bowling or update your resume in Corvalis?
Ted Miller (3:22 PM)
The Beavers will be better this year. I think they've got a good shot to get to a bowl game.
Jose (Palo Alto)
Ted, with the BIG 10 scheduling partnership, are they still planning on moving to a 9 conference game schedule or did that get scrapped? Any idea if Larry Scott is die-hard committed to the 9 game conference schedule if conferences like the SEC refuse to come along?
Ted Miller (3:24 PM)
Scott recognizes the flaws of the 9-game schedule. And, no, the Big Ten and SEC don't look like they will go to a 9-game. But it's the ADs that are resisting change. The 9-game schedule is stupid. Of course, if you go to 8 games there are consequences, such as fewer trips to southern California for NW schools.
From the North, the overall quality of the Pac-12 appears to be getting better. Do you share the same view in the South?
Ted Miller (3:25 PM)
USC is top-five. Utah top 25. I like the 3 coach hires in the south. And Colorado will get better, though it might be 2013 before anyone notices.
Now that Tra Carson is transferring, Oregon only has 2 RBs on the roster until the 1 RB recruit from this last class arrives on campus. And De'Anthony isn't going to hold up to more than 10 carries a game. Doesn't Oregon have to move someone over to RB? I think the most logical choice would be Josh Huff but he is one of only 2 receivers with legitimate experience! and the other is De'Anthony! I think Oregon could be in serious trouble if Kenjon gets injured.
Ted Miller (3:28 PM)
Kelly loads up on speed, so he'd be able to figure things out. But, yes, losing Carson hurts, particularly if Barner gets hurt. Most teams would be in a pickle if they lost their top-2 runners, though. I think De'Anthony can handle more than 10 carries a game. He's not slightly built or anything. Not much different than LaMike.
Ipm (Park city, UT)
How will Utah's defense fair for next season? Will they be a top tier defense in the pac 12?
Ted Miller (3:29 PM)
Couple of hits at LB, but the Utes should have one of the top defenses in the conference. Would be interesting to see them against Oregon, but they miss Oregon and Stanford again in 2012.
Brash words from David Shaw about Wayne Lyons becoming one of the best DB's in the country. Didn't see enough of him this year b/c of injury to know if this is far-fetched. What do you think?
Ted Miller (3:31 PM)
My impression is Shaw has a nice eye for talent. I know I heard plenty of good things about Lyons before he got hurt. Considering the secondary has been a bit of a question, even during the Cardinal's rise, having an A-list CB would be meaningful.
Frank Tucker (Florida)
whats the deal with USC's former 13 year old recruit QB? Is he still on his way there?
Ted Miller (3:34 PM)
That was a silly publicity thing from a guy with an self-promoting dad.. I don't expect him to be good enough when it matters to get a USC scholarship.
Rich Rod vs Kelly first one to ____ wins?
Ted Miller (3:34 PM)
Well give Rich Rod a few years. At this point, he doesn't have any De'Anthony's.
Do you see Jordan Winn automatically becoming the starter at Utah or can one of the new guys steal his spot?
Ted Miller (3:35 PM)
If healthy, Wynn will start.
Any scuttlebutt on possible sanctions against the Ducks?
Ted Miller (3:35 PM)
nope... and if anyone says they have an idea,they are lying.
If Lamike ran a 4.45 at the combine what do would you predict dat runs right now?
Ted Miller (3:36 PM)
sub-4.4.... LaMike is fast but De'Anthony has world class speed.
Ted, Wazzu is suddenly very thin at linebacker; what's the solution? Hope and pray the young guys can step up? Switch schemes?
Ted Miller (3:38 PM)
You probably will see some guys change positions. Maybe move a safety up. Hope some young guys step up. Bottom line is that will be, at best, an extremely green position for the Cougs.
With Stanford's depth of LB's (Thomas, Lancaster, Skov, Tarpley), do you see any position-changing possibilities for one of the recent stud recruits (Vaughters or Noor Davis). Maybe to an end-rusher?
Ted Miller (3:40 PM)
I know Shaw told me last year that he wanted to get his best guys on the field, and that was in reference to his depth at LB... My guess is a lot of guys will run in and out, and some will become situational players... it helps the Cardinal runs a 3-4, so you can regularly play 7-8 LBs.
Oscar Batista (Irwindale CA)
Hey Ted! Does USC have any nonconferene game with an SEC school in the near future??
Ted Miller (3:42 PM)
Texas A&M 2015-16.
Ted, I am having a difficult time imagining that UW will be as offensively dominant without Polk in the lineup. Unless one of the backup running backs steps up, I don't see the Huskies taking a step forward, even if the defense steps up. Any words of encouragement to the Husky fan base?
Ted Miller (3:43 PM)
Price, Kasen Williams and ASF in their second years... 4 starters back on the O-line... I think the offense has a chance to be better in 2012, even if it has to be running back by committee.
will the ducks ever get a SEC team to come to autzen? or are they scared of us poor 55,000?
Ted Miller (3:45 PM)
Tennessee, as far as I know, is still scheduled to come in 2013. And Texas A&M in 2018-19.
2004, 2008 and now it's 2012. Can Utah suprise everyone with a Rose bowl trip this year? They are due.
Ted Miller (3:45 PM)
Utah has a bit of a USC problem.... but if the Trojans aren't going to win the South, my No. 2 team is Utah.
Bi Al T (Burbank)
Who do you see as the fav to get the UCLA QB job? Also, the schedule set up nicely for them this year. Any shot at a 9+ win season?
Ted Miller (3:46 PM)
I like Hundley. 9 wins sounds pretty darn optimistic. I'd rate the over-under at six or seven. I do think the Bruins should be highly competitive in Mora's first year. Enough coming back to get back to a bowl game.
Who are your top three teams for the title?
Ted Miller (3:47 PM)
National? LSU, USC, Alabama, Oklahoma. That's four. Maybe FSU.
wetterhorn (New York)
Connor Wood, the Texas transfer, got the shaft at UT due to politics and will definitely be the starter next year. I predict he will shock the nation when he throws for 4000 yards. Paul Richardson will dominate and be a first rounder in the 2013 draft. Buffs will have 25 interceptions with our new DBs. Buffs win 8. Could it happen?
Ted Miller (3:49 PM)
no, but I love the optimism. What the Buffs want from Wood is 230 or so yards of efficient passing per game. The secondary should be better in 2012. I think 6-7 is the high end for the Buffs... Got to start 3-0 then win two of three against WSU, UCLA and ASU.
keither (ducktown USA)
Ted, assuming the Ducks get hit relatively hard by the NCAA, does the Oregon "quasi-dynasty" go away forever? Or is it cemented enough to weather some storms?
Ted Miller (3:51 PM)
I don't think Oregon gets hit hard, but if it does I think the key is keeping Chip Kelly. I think Oregon stays at or near the top as long as he's in Eugene.
Who do you like in the Pac-12 basketball tournament?
Ted Miller (3:52 PM)
The Pac-12 plays basketball?
What type of season does ASU need to have for it to be considered a success?
Ted Miller (3:53 PM)
I think a bowl berth would be a success. I also think that Sun Devils fans would be happy to see a team that gets better as the season goes on, one that shows some heart in the fourth quarter and one that gets a lot fewer penalties.
Mike Leach (Pullman)
Have the arrests in Tucson distracted people away from my dismissal of Kaufusi?
Ted Miller (3:54 PM)
yes... but distraction won't change that losing a starting LB is a HUGE blow to a defense that isn't deep at the position.
Nothing prettier than watching the sun setting behind the Flatirons from Folsom field. Got something better?
Ted Miller (3:55 PM)
Hanging 60 on Nebraska while watching the sun setting behind the Flatirons from Folsom field?
I was lied to, there were no refreshments provided...
Ted Miller (3:56 PM)
We ate them all. Sorry. Ribs!
Upgrading our passing attack to unleash offensive havoc with Leach, do you see us finally ending the huskies apple cup winning streak?
Ted Miller (3:58 PM)
I think this could be the best shot in years... in Pullman. It will be interesting to see where things stand at that point. My guess is bowl positioning will be at stake for both teams.
Oregon isn't down to 2 RB. There is still Forde, Baker and Blake. Also Hawkins who has lined up at QB and RB even though listed as WR.
Ted Miller (4:00 PM)
Well... we're talking about known quantities... I think the incoming frosh Marshall will be the backup behind Barner -- with De'Anthony being De'Anthony.
Ted Miller (4:01 PM)
OK gang... back to my day job... Thanks for stopping by. Not sure if I'll be back next week because I'll be in Portland for the NCAA regional.