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October 20, 2:00 PM ET
Chat with Pat Forde

Pat Forde
  (2:00 PM)

Yo, chatters. I'm here, you're here, let's start. One unsolicited comment first: it's another great day to be a Denver Broncos fan. To the questions!

John (Harrisburg (PA))

Penn State's OOC schedule is not any worse than Florida's. Is the Big 10 really that bad? PSU has had great success against SEC and Big 12 teams in Bowl Games. Why such little respect for the Lions?

Pat Forde
  (2:02 PM)

John: Penn State's OOC IS worse than Florida's. At least the Gators play Florida State -- and even a bad Florida State team is better than anything Penn State will play. Unless you're really bullish on Akron, Syracuse, Temple or Eastern Illinois. That's pathetic.

Andrew (Miami)

Is it just me or does USC have the worst loss of the 1-loss teams in the top 15 (possibly in the top 25). How are they still ranked so high?

Pat Forde
  (2:05 PM)

Andrew: That's the difficult (OK, impossible) balancing act of the polls. The loss is not as good as, say, losing in Blacksburg, Boise or Coral Gables -- but winning at Ohio State, at Notre Dame and at California are three quality road victories. And the injuries must be taken into account -- USC was without Barkley and Mays for that game, best player and starting QB.

Jason (Boise)

I have been a Boise State fan since I was a kid going to games when they were a junior college. Do you think that everyone expects too much from them since they have such a winning tradition? Aren't they like the youngest team in college football this year?

Pat Forde
  (2:06 PM)

Jason: Expectations are high because of Boise's start against Oregon and subsequent dominant victories. But yes, this is a really young team -- I've said it before and I'll say it again, Boise could win the national title next year. And they're still awfully good this year.

Dahz (Michigan)

Pat, love your work. Intersting question here. My friends and I argue about this all the time. Who is "America's Team" of College Football?

Pat Forde
  (2:08 PM)

Dahz: It's still Notre Dame, no matter how much some people hate to hear it. I'd say USC has become a competitive second in that arena, especially since the Trojans schedule nationally -- and ambitiously. But nobody else generates the national interest and emotion (positive and negative) that Notre Dame does.

Trent (Bristol, CT)

Thoughts on Jasper Howard's untimely death?

Pat Forde
  (2:08 PM)

Trent: A horrible, horrible thing. I feel very badly for his family, friends and teammates.

Louis (Montreal )

Did you just vote a .500 team 17 in the power rankings?

Pat Forde
  (2:09 PM)

Louis: Yes I did. Three losses to three ranked teams by a total of five points.

Chris (League City, TX)

Let's talk football. If the Houston Cougars finish the season undefeated, are they top 5? Does Keenum win the Heisman?

Pat Forde
  (2:10 PM)

Chris: Cannot finish undefeated after losing to UTEP -- and giving up 58 points in that game. And that also hurts Keenum's Heisman campaign.

Greg (Champaign, IL)

Did you get to see any school's Midnight Madness this past weekend?

Pat Forde
  (2:10 PM)

Greg: No. I was in Dallas for the Red River Rivalry game Friday night and nobody was talking basketball -- even though both Texas and Oklahoma should be good.

Munkus (Alabama)

What are Mark Ingram's chances of winning the Heisman this year?

Pat Forde
  (2:12 PM)

Munkus: I think very good at this point. He's running great, behind an offensive line that has really stepped up with three news starters. He runs hard and runs smart (no fumbles) and can break big plays. Right now I'd say he and Tebow are the front-runners -- but it's only October.

AJ (Houston)

Pat, your thoughts on the Michigan offense against PSU's defense this weekend? Michigan seems to play pretty well at the Big House.

Pat Forde
  (2:13 PM)

AJ: Very good matchup of strength on strength. I like Michigan in that game, actually. Homefield advantage, plus Forcier should be recovered after largely sitting out the Del State game. Penn State has played just one road game, at horrific Illinois, so it's decidedly less seasoned than the Wolverines.

Travis (N.Idaho)

What do you think of the turn around Rob Akey has done at Idaho?

Pat Forde
  (2:14 PM)

Travis: Coach of the Year -- not just in the WAC. In the whole United States of Football America. At least for now.

Ron (Cleveland)

4D I know ND lost but does that 2nd half showing of JC against USC show how good of a player he really is and increase his Heisman chances.

Pat Forde
  (2:16 PM)

Ron: Clausen is having a great season, but the Irish lost and he couldn't make the game-winning throw when he had, what, about eight opportunities to do so in the final minute. He's still in the mix but I don't think that game helped him. Didn't kill him, but didn't help as much as it could have.

David (Athens, GA)

Pat, I know Georgia is a big disappointment, but what about AJ Green in the Heisman talk... we would easily be 1-6 without this guy. If not Heisman, what about the biletnikoff?

Pat Forde
  (2:16 PM)

David: Biletnikoff, yes. Heisman, no.

Darla (Oxford, MS)

Apparently you don't subscribe to the "a win is a win" philosophy. Justify "style points" for me.

Pat Forde
  (2:18 PM)

Darla: I don't know about justification, but how about explanation? Texas beat an OU team that lost its starting QB (the returning Heisman winner) in-game by three points. And anyone who wants to say that game was nothing but a defensive classic must have missed the eight fumbles (in perfect playing conditions) and tidal wave of penalties. It was an ugly game won in an ugly fashion. Winning is great, but I wasn't dazzled.

Kris (NY, NY)

Pat, how is USC the top ranked one loss team? They beat ND who has no defense and OSU who has no offense. And they lost to Washington! I repeat, Washington! Meanwhile Miami lost to VT in Blacksburg in a MONSOON. Again, USC lost to Washington! There are no excuses for losing to a team that is just flat out bad.

Pat Forde
  (2:19 PM)

What was the score of that Miami-VT game? And did it rain on both sidelines, or just on Miami?

Pat Forde
  (2:19 PM)

What was the score of that Miami-VT game? And did it rain on both sidelines, or just on Miami?

TRIDDLE (Cambridge, OH)

Does Tressel have any way out of the "Pryor Perdicament" ?

Pat Forde
  (2:21 PM)

Triddle: I'm not on the inside there, but it seems to me the Ohio State staff needs to be more flexible with its offense to maximize Pryor's strengths. More running. More scramble opportunities. I know USC was scared to death of Pryor on the move with the football, but Ohio State rarely put it in his hands. Seems to there has been a lack of creativity within the offense to get him doing his best.

Dutch (Charleston,wv)

Are there meeting at the beginning of the season to see which team to hype the most? Or, is more of a week by week thing , depending on whose winning?

Pat Forde
  (2:21 PM)

Dutch: Our next super-secret meeting is at 3, right after this chat. Who do you want us to hype?

Mike ((San Antonio))

You ripped UT for a sloppy win and no "style" pionts. Please tell us what "style" point Gators got on Saturday? With out a few bad calls Ark. wins that game. Write an article on that!

Pat Forde
  (2:22 PM)

Mike: I didn't cover that game. Mark Schlabach did. And he wrote an article on that. It's on our site, certainly you can find it.

Jason (leeds,Al)

Will Tebow make it through the season as Florida's only running threat and does that mean doom for the Gators if they face Alabama in the SEC championship?

Pat Forde
  (2:23 PM)

Jason: I have to say, Tebow is not Florida's only running threat. He isn't even the Gators' leading rusher (Jeff Demps is). Florida has three backs who can tote the rock, so it's not all on Tebow's shoulders to run the ball.

Jack (East Lansing)

Msu have a shot to beat iowa this weekend???

Pat Forde
  (2:24 PM)

Jack: Yes, I think so. Sparty seems to have turned it around -- and although I'm really impressed with what Iowa has done, I still don't see the Hawkeyes going 12-0. So, yeah, I think this is a prime upset opportunity for Michigan State at home.

Josh (Knoxville, TN)

For the record, Schlabach called Florida to task for playing so poorly and said they didn't deserve to be #1.

Pat Forde
  (2:25 PM)

Josh: Thank you.

Darryl (Oakland, CA)

Here on the west coast we are wondering how the Pac 10 isn't considered by most espn er's to be the top overall conference. The Pac 10 usually does great in OOC (they actually play better than JC competition) and they end up beating the snot out of each other during the regular season. Where do you rank the conferences?

Pat Forde
  (2:26 PM)

Darryl: I'd rank the Pac-10 no worse than No. 2 right now. USC and Oregon both very good. Arizona explosive. Cal presumably is bouncing back. Stanford and Washington improved. Oregon State and Arizona State dangerous. Very good league this year. Even with Washington State again looking like a 10-car pileup.

Ryan (SLC, UT)

Given the bad loss this week what do you think the chances are that Nebraska still wins the Big 12 North?

Pat Forde
  (2:28 PM)

Ryan: Big 12 North is, once again, a tub of live (and mediocre) bait. Nebraska could win it. Heck, any of them could win it. And then lose by five touchdowns to Texas in the Big 12 title game.

Mike C. (Portland, Or.)

Ok, be completely honest about this. Do you think that Oregon, at 5-1 with their only loss being on the road against a Top-5 ranked team, be ranked as low as they are now if it wasn't for the Blount situation? Is that incident hurting them in the polls?

Pat Forde
  (2:30 PM)

Mike: I think the Blount situation had less to do with it than the fact that Oregon was absolutely hideous in that game, and a lot of voters probably haven't had the chance to give the Ducks the eyeball test since then. If Oregon wins at Washington, it sets up the Halloween game against USC as absolutely huge. Win that one and there will be a corresponding poll jump I am sure.

Greg (Champaign, IL)

Who do you believe is the best team in the MWC? It's a pretty overlooked conference right now...

Pat Forde
  (2:31 PM)

Greg: I think TCU is the team. Huge game in Provo Saturday, but the Frogs have done some good work on the road (dominated a suddenly resuscitated Virginia, beat Clemson, beat Air Force). I think TCU runs the table and jumps Boise for the BCS at-large spot.

Jason (State College)

Do math homework in 8th period study hall or talk to Forde? Ah, the decisions we have to make in life.

Pat Forde
  (2:32 PM)

Jason: You've made the right one, my man. Homework can wait. (Don't tell your parents I said that.)

Greg P (Staten Island,NY)

Pat, any chance the Big East adds a team or two in the next few years?...Tough to be a BCS conf. when you have only have 8 teams and play only 7 conf games?

Pat Forde
  (2:34 PM)

Greg: I think the Big East would very much like to add a football-playing member to get to 8 league games for a variety of reasons: 1) even road-home scheduling every year; 2) one fewer game against the Norfolk States of the world. I really think the league would love to see Central Florida improve enough to merit inclusion -- but that also brings about the massive problem of 17 basketball schools. And nobody wants that.

Bob (Mi)

Any chance Central Michigan gets ranked if they win out??

Pat Forde
  (2:34 PM)

Bob: Absolutely. I put the Chippewas in my top 25 this week, so if they keep winning they'll be there.

Sarah (Dallas)

Was it a mistake for Bradford to come back so soon from injury? What is your opinion of his future? Come back or go pro?

Pat Forde
  (2:36 PM)

Sarah: I asked Bob Stoops Saturday if he came back too soon. He said Drs cleared him, Sam understood the situation, and that he was throwing the ball great -- threw it 60 yards in pregame warmups. But the fact that he got hurt again makes it clear to me that he tried to come back too soon. I felt very badly for him watching that happen.

Jason (Florida)

I understand that everyone sees Bama as the #1 team as of right now, but isnt the discussion between them and Florida a moot point??? As long as they continue winning this will get settled on the field so everyone needs to stop with the why one is better than the other. Also because Bama seems to be playing better than UF now people assume they will bet UF in the SEC title game, but if I were heading into that game there is no way I would pick Bama....both have great defenses but it comes down to QB....McElroy or Tebow??? Who ya got?

Pat Forde
  (2:37 PM)

Jason: Yes, it's a moot point. If they both win out, winner goes to the national title game. It will be settled on the field in a de facto national semifinal -- like basketball, which has a sensible postseason. But that's another matter. As for McElroy-Tebow? Ummmmm, I think I'll take the one from Gainesville.

Steve (Utah)

What are your criteria for dashette of the week?

Pat Forde
  (2:39 PM)

Steve: Only one thing -- the first name must end in "a." That's an obscure homage to the original Dashette, Adriana Lima, and all her gorgeous vowels. Oh, and she has to be hot, too.

BUTTERS (COLUMBUS, OH)

Did John Gruden laugh at being offered the head job at Louisville?

Pat Forde
  (2:39 PM)

Butters: Jon Gruden wasn't offered the job. And won't be offered the job. And wouldn't take it if offered.

Mike (Birmingham)

Which QB will have a better showing this week: Crompton or McElroy?

Pat Forde
  (2:41 PM)

Mike: Gotta take McElroy, as much for his surrounding cast as anything else. I know Crompton was tremendous against Georgia, but Alabama's defense is an entirely different animal.

caleb (kentucky)

is kragthorpe on a very hot seat?

Pat Forde
  (2:42 PM)

Caleb: Put it this way, he recently moved his office to the interior of an active volcano because it was cooler.

Hillary (Lake Tahoe, NV)

Is it too early to call for Stoops' resignation?

Pat Forde
  (2:42 PM)

Hillary: Um, yes. And for the person who asked the same question about Jim Tressel? Same answer.

Tim (Boise, ID)

Do you really see GAMEDAY in Boise on the 11/14? I would love it, but I can't see that happening even if the 2 teams combined have 1 loss.

Pat Forde
  (2:44 PM)

Tim: I honestly haven't checked the schedule to see what the competition would be. But I don't know that ESPN has made a point of trying some new/non-traditional venues from time to time. I'd love to see it happen ... if both teams keep winning. Consider this my personal grass-roots campaign for it.

Ken (Savannah)

What are the chances of the Hoos beating the Jackets this weekend? Does Grohtober continue?

Pat Forde
  (2:45 PM)

Ken: Grohtober -- I like that. Wish I'd thought of it. At this point, I am done predicting what Virginia is going to do. Insane program.

J.B. (Dunmore, PA)

No one asked about Charlie Weis' resignation yet they asked about Stoops and Tressel? Tough crowd.

Pat Forde
  (2:45 PM)

J.B.: Well said. And let me say this, if ND loses to BC this week, Charlie is in major trouble.

Jonathan (Westerville, OH)

If you've seen Terrelle Pryor play, does it look like to you that he's afraid of contact in the way he runs or has happy feet in the pocket?

Pat Forde
  (2:47 PM)

Jonathan: That's a good point. I've always thought Pryor runs without anywhere near the physical power you'd expect of a guy 6-6 and 235 pounds. He runs out of bounds a LOT and tends to rely on using his hands to ward off low tacklers, almost never lowering a shoulder. Maybe that's why they don't run him more -- because he doesn't like to do it. I don't know.

Chris Choi (Amarillo, TX)

Why is Texas such a second half team?

Pat Forde
  (2:48 PM)

Chris: I don't know. Colt McCoy said as much Saturday and seemed to be OK with it -- because the wins keep coming. And the wins probably will keep coming through December. But if I were a Texas fan I'd feel a lot better with a fast start in Columbia this week, and Stillwater in a couple weeks.

Trevor (Lakeland, FL)

Does USC deserve to be ranked #4 in the BCS with a loss at Washington?

Pat Forde
  (2:49 PM)

Trevor: USC is No. 7 in the BCS, not No. 4.

Vinnie (ATL)

Should Florida be on upset alert against MSU? Dan Mullen knows Florida's offense which is not hard to figure out. If MSU shows the type of defensive effort against Florida as they did against LSU, this could be closer than the experts think.

Pat Forde
  (2:52 PM)

Vinnie: Florida should be wary of Miss State for the same reason USC should have been wary of Washington -- coach who knows the scheme and personnel inside-out, and has probably been pointing toward this game against the old team since the moment he took the new job. That said, I don't see Florida turning it over four times again this week, and I don't think Miss State has much chance of scoring. I don't think it will be a wipeout, but not a white knuckler either.

Falcon (Ft. Collins, CO)

Any chance you could make it out for a CSU game? You and I could make a dramatic entrance.

Pat Forde
  (2:52 PM)

Hahaha.

Larry (Arvada CO)

Why with pedestrian stats is Tebow still in the mix... when ESPN has quickly excused others with such pathetic performances against UNRANKED opponents at home... is there a decree at ESPN that Tebow needs to be excused for his performance, but everyone else is held accountable.

Pat Forde
  (2:54 PM)

Larry: Perhaps you've missed Florida's record this year. And last year. And what Tebow means to his team's success. And it's not exactly like his numbers are terrible. He's third nationally in pass efficiency and second on his team in rushing.

Paul (Tuscaloosa, AL)

Which are better: Big 10 student sections or SEC student sections?

Pat Forde
  (2:55 PM)

Paul: Good question. Both are great. SEC schools make it more of a social occasion -- the kids dress up and there are a lot more girls who like to go to the games, it seems. Big Ten kids probably a bit hardier, since they have to deal with colder weather. But I wouldn't knock either genre.

Dylan (Bryan, TX)

What the hell is going on in Aggieland?

Pat Forde
  (2:56 PM)

Dylan: Damn good question! Most stunning score of the year was Kansas State 38, Aggies zip at halftime. Simply could not believe that. Mike Sherman: duck!

Randall (Austin, TX)

How correct am I in my theory that if Florida has just ONE WR that can stretch the field deep that many of the offensive woes can be healed?

Pat Forde
  (2:57 PM)

Randall: I think you're pretty correct. Actually, just one WR who can take a 10-yard curl and turn it into a 70-yard touchdown, too. Missing a gamebreaker on the outside.

Paul (Tuscaloosa, AL)

If Iowa and USC run the table and Texas loses, who is in the NC game?

Pat Forde
  (2:59 PM)

Paul: I don't know, but it sounds like a fun argument to have, doesn't it? My gut says USC, but we'll see.

David (Athens, GA)

Pat, what does Georgia need to accomplish during the bye week to turn the season around?

Pat Forde
  (3:00 PM)

David: A bunch, most of it on defense. Secondary has just been bad, and pass rush not great. That might not be fixable by scheme in a bye week, but the Dogs can at least try.

Robert (Oklahoma)

What do I do the rest of the year? My teams 3-3!

Pat Forde
  (3:00 PM)

Robert: Become a fan of someone else for six weeks.

Drew ((Gainesville, FL))

Straight forward Pat true or false: The Gators miss Dan Mullen more than Percy Harvin?(your cheat sheet says answer True)

Pat Forde
  (3:01 PM)

Drew: No, I tend to think false. Talent over scheme.

Trevor (Lakeland, FL)

Who do you see coming out on top in the crazy ACC?

Pat Forde
  (3:01 PM)

Trevor: No clue. Cannot even try to understand that league at this point.

Rafael (Louisville)

What is causing all the ridiculous rumors about Coach Kragthorope (getting fired, AD looking for new coach) , and do you believe they are warranted?

Pat Forde
  (3:03 PM)

Rafael: The rumors are persistent. And persistently annoying. Do I believe Kragthorpe will be gone? Yes. Do I believe he's already been informed? Or already told the team? Or Jon Gruden is house hunting? Or Tommy Tuberville/Phil Fulmer/Jeff Jagodzinski was seen playing golf iwth Tom Jurich? NO. Everybody settle down, shut up and let this thing play out.

Pat Forde
  (3:03 PM)

And on that ranting note, it's time for me to go. Have a good week, everyone. Thanks for the questions.