College football's national holiday is just around the corner.
Considering florida's touted recruiting class, does alabama still have the sec wrapped up? Which recruits might see some early playing time and how do you see them performing? Also, what do you think of florida's john brantley?
I wouldn't say Alabama has anything wrapped up. The Tide will be my pick to win the league next year. But as we saw this year with Florida, repeating in this league is so difficult. Maybe that's why it hasn't been done in 11 years.
Do you have an up and coming player that could have a breakout year in the SEC that might not be on the fans radar?
I'll give you a couple: Andre DeBose at Florida, Dre Kirkpatrick at Alabama, Marcell Dareus at Alabama, Tauren Poole at Tennessee, Craig Loston at LSU and Orson Charles at Georgia.
How soon and how much of an Inpact will the new Florida recruits have?
I think next season in spots. Anybody who catch a pass and make a play will get a chance and maybe some help at safety.
Chris - Arkansas fan up here in chilly SD. How is their offseason and recruiting looking? I am looking forward to a good offensive year from the offense. I think Mallett is the real deal. Your thoughts?
I would rate the Hogs' recruiting as good, but not great. But the good news is that the Hogs have the nucleus on offense, particularly with Mallett returning, to make a run in the West. Now, notice I didn't say anything about defense. The Hogs have to improve dramatically on defense to make some noise.
Who do you think will win the race for Marcus Lattimore? Going by the stats last year with Auburn having a top 20 overall offense and top 15 rushing offense I would think Auburn would have a huge edge but due to Michael Dyer coming to the plains I can also see him trying to go to USC and making himself a star. Of course I would love to see him on the Plains making him a part of a stout stable of RBs. Your thoughts?
Auburn has done a great job with this class, but getting Lattimore out of South Carolina may prove too difficult. I think the Gamecocks get him.
Will Tennessee land Ambles & Rogers on Wednesday?
I would say no to both. But I like their chances to landing at least one, and Tennessee needs a playmaker at receiver in the worst way.
Why does everyone seem to love Julio Jones more than AJ Green? Green has better numbers, better hands, and "the film don't lie."
I was one of those guys who liked Jones better after their sophomore seasons. But having had two seasons to watch them both, I'd take Green right now. They're both exceptional talents and should be outstanding at the next level.
what do u think golden days of LSU has gone?
I've been asked that a lot lately, and I understand that's what happens when you lose nine games in two years after having the run Miles did from 2005-07, capped with the national title. There's still talent in that program. But I do believe this is a key year for Miles. Another four-loss season would put him on really shaky ground.
How do you think the UGA defensive personnel will fit into Granthams scheme?
No matter what scheme Georgia runs, I still think the Bulldogs needs more pass-rushers, whether they're outside linebackers or defensive ends. What Houston did last year was impressive, but they need a couple more of those.
What do you think about UGA hiring Grantham and converting to a 3-4?
I like the Grantham hire a lot. He has extensive experience in the NFL. He's coordinated a defense in the NFL and he learned under two of the best college coaches out there -- Frank Beamer and Nick Saban.
I like their chances with Kouandjio. I also think Coleman likes Alabama a lot, although the Tide is looking more for an inside guy, which is why they like Stone so much. Pendry really likes Stone, although Tennessee is fighting hard to keep him in state. Clemson will be hard to beat for Allen if the Tigers take his brother.
Do you think we will finally get the real story behind the Urban Meyer craziness after signing day?
Honestly, I don't think we'll ever know how all that went down and all the variables involved.
It is amazing how well Derek Dooley has done on the recruiting trail to this point. The guy doesn't have a big-name but he still seems to be on track to finish with near or in the top 10 and has only had 3 weeks to work. What do you think about his recruiting to this point?
If he closes with Ambles and Rogers, then it has to be considered an amazing job. Even so, I think he's done a very good job of holding this class together. We'll see how it unfolds these next two days. I still think the key guy is Stone, the offensive lineman from Nashville.
Will the Gators switch their name to the Tebows?
No, the Brantleys
Love the chats Chris, O/U - 8.5 wins for Auburn in 2010? Your buddy Bruce Feldman replied to the same question with 9 wins last week.
Bruce is a lot smarter than me. But getting Cam Newton and getting him in school for the spring was big. I'll go with nine wins, including the bowl game. Defense has to be more consistent.
do you think florida still wins the east next year without tebow, or is the division wide open? who is your sleeper in the EAST
I believe the division will be as open as it's been since 2005, Meyer's first year, when everybody in the East had at least two losses. I see that kind of year again, but I still think the Gators are the most talented team and that Brantley's the real thing and they will be back in Atlanta.
Best recruiter in the SEC?
Nick Saban 1st, Urban Meyer 2nd. I would have Rodney Garner as the top recruiting assistant.
UGA, Auburn, Miami, who's your guess for Mr. Whitaker's verbal today?
I'll go with the Bulldogs
This business of faking kids facebook pictures, has there been anything worse?
No, the whole Facebook thing is a powder keg and the NCAA's worst nightmare. It's lifted the wall between the fan and the recruit, which opens up all sorts of possibilities. I'm not sure what the answers is, either.
Are you sad Tebow is gone? Less to write about next year? or happy?
Tim was a classy guy and one heck of a college football player. But in this league, they come and they go (to quote the sports writer in "The Natural")
Considering Alabama and Ole Miss will probably slightly worse than last year and the other four SEC West teams will all likely be slightly better... exactly how crazy/lucky do you have to be to pick 1-6 in the west next year?
Well, I was crazy enough to pick Ole Miss over Alabama last year, so ...But, yes, the West will be a bloodbath next year. Mississippi State will be improved. Arkansas should be in a position to contend, and you never count out LSU with the Tigers' talent. I also think Auburn will be better equipped to hang in there down the stretch with some improved depth. The 11 straight weeks killed the Tigers this past season.
What chance do you give the Bulldawgs with the stud Arron Murray to take the trip to Atlanta in the SEC championship
I mean this honestly: I think Georgia and South Carolina both have as good a chance to make it to Atlanta next year as they've had since Urban Meyer arrived in 2005. If I were picking right now, though, I'd still go 1. Florida 2. Georgia and 3. South Carolina
6th in West is easy. Miss St. Other than that good luck? I say Bama, Ark, LSU, Auburn, Ole Miss, Miss St is the order of finish. I am an LSU fan saying that.
I wouldn't sleep on Mississippi State. The Bulldogs played a lot of freshmen and seemed to get better as the year wore on. They will miss Dixon, but go back and look at the way they handled Ole Miss. They were also a tipped pass away from beating LSU and played Florida into the fourth quarter. I like what Dan Mullen has done there and think the Bulldogs will be in a bowl next season.
Besides Mark Ingram, who makes their name next season as one of the SEC's premier running backs? Will Washaun Ealey be one to consider after next season?
Absolutely, I'd have Ealey right up there near the top. Ingram would certainly be No. 1, and I'd have his backup, Trent Richardson, close behind. After those three, I'd watch Stevan Ridley at LSU, and I think Derrick Locke at Kentucky is one of the most underrated backs in the SEC.
Is UT going to be back as a 10 win team under Dooley? If so is it by year 3?
I would say Year No. 3 at the earliest. Dooley has taken on a pretty major rebuilding project. We'll see how patient they are on Rocky Top.
How do you think Russell Shepard will do this coming season?
First of all, I would hope the Tigers use him a little more and find some different ways to get him the ball. Given their struggles on offense last season, he's a guy you've got to get more involved in the offense.
Arkansas has yet play a game and everyone is jumping on the bandwagon. Are they the 2010 Ole Miss?
If they don't improve on defense, they sure could be. That said, as disappointing as Ole Miss was in September, the Rebels did rebound to win nine games in back-to-back seasons for the first time in nearly 50 years.
How long does the ole ball coach stay at South Carolina, especially if they can't ever win an SEC championship?
I know they've heard this in South Carolina before, but if the Gamecocks are ever going to do it, it's gotta be next season. They have a lot of key players returning and the playing field has been leveled in the East. One way or the other, I think the Head Ball Coach might walk after next season. Either, the Gamecocks have that breakthrough season and he hands it over to someone else, or they lose five-plus games again and he finally throws up his hands.
That's a wrap for me. Happy signing day to everybody. I hope your teams get everybody you want these last couple of days and that everybody plays nice. Take care.