Greetings. It's 80 degrees in Scottsdale. Fire away.
With 5 player suspended, and if Jim Tressel cana??t coach the game vs. Colorado, what chance do the Buffs have of winning in the horseshoe? If that is not enough for Colorado to have a chance, what would need to happen for them to have a chance? Be honest, we CAN handle the truth.
Colorado would have a chance under any circumstances; it's a college football game. The Buckeyes issues could have one of two results: 1. Ohio State circles the wagons and plays with fire in an us-against-the-world way; 2. Ohio State plays flat and rudderless. No matter what, the Buffs are an underdog. But their chances are better today than they were in Dec. of 2010.
What happened with Jerrard Randall? Heard he's not going to Oregon after all?
It looks like Oregon and randall went their separate ways for whatever reason. Word was he made his ACT score. Perhaps there were other issues.
You're video updates are far better than any of the other ESPN Bloggers. Any chance you move to the big screen?
Ha! No, but George Clooney is playing me in "Pac-12 blog: The Dark Knight."
Do you have to tease us with the 80 degrees in Scottsdale?
yes. I used to live in Seattle, so I like to gloat about non-summer weather now.
I heard rumors about the ASU Mizzou game being move to friday September 9th, nationally televised on espn but have not seen anything about it here. What's the word on that?
You may be on to something.
Hey Ted, what do you think about the Tressel/OSU situation in comparison to USC? Several players and a coach who was obviously in the loop vs. ONE player and a coach who has never been shown to have committed any wrong doing?
It's apples and oranges in some ways, but any fair-minded person is starting to realize just hope ridiculously harsh the penalties were against the Trojans.
What do you see as the worst case scenario for Oregon as a result to the Willy Lyle's situation
I don't know and I don't want to wander too far into speculation. The fundamental issues are: 1. Can Oregon/Lyles prove his recruiting service was legit (what did the Ducks get for their money)? 2. Did Lyles hold sway over players who went to Oregon? It's simple and complicated.
What are your thoughts on ASU's late signings? Erickson made it sound like they were awfully good. Can they be as good as advertised?
Erickson and ASU folks have taken that position. We'll see. Maybe. But my experience is late signees who we've never heard of aren't typically A-list players.
Seriously--still only ONE Stanford player on your top-25 list? What does a team have to do beyond winning the Orange Bowl to win some love?
Stanford vexed me very much while doing the rankings. I will write specifically about that when we finish the top-25. But my basic response is: Who would you kick out?
Will I get off the wait list at UPenn and get into my PhD program? I need a sign from Ted Miller, aka god.
Not the one to ask on this one: I became a sports writer after I was turned down for PhD programs in English, including by a number of Pac-10 schools. Good luck, though. And don't call me "god." Zeus will do.
Does anybody (besides you, Ted) proof read before submitting? You should mock some of these typos.
What are pro scouts saying about Matt Barkley at the next level? Or is it too early to tell? Furthermore, with all the stuff going on with Auburn, Oregon, and OSU, it seems to me that the NCAA HAS to be looking at those scenarios and USC's. Any chance the NCAA might give the Men of Troy a break?
Barkley is a first-round talent, but he has to play that way this year. As for USC, not sure all of the stuff going on will have a significant effect on the Trojans' appeal. But it is out there and the appeals committee has to be aware of the present climate.
So you ranked Talmadge Jackson III ahead of me in your Pac-10 top 25 because of what Coach Kelly said. I take it you never took Read Between the Lines 101 in college.
Harris is a more talented cornerback than Jackson. Harris made a lot of big plays. If he works hard, he will end up a better player than Jackson. His game, however, has shortcomings and he wasn't always consistent. Jackson was rated a better player by 1. Chip Kelly; 2. Nick Aliotti; 3. Pac-10 coaches voting Jackson first-team All-Pac-10. The only dissenters are a handful of Ducks fans who don't evaluate game film.
Do you think the Pac 12 will go the way of the Big 12 with one division being significantly stronger than the other? If so...is that such a bad thing?
No... there's good competitive balance in the divisions. There will always be ebbs (USC up; Oregon up, etc) and flows, but I don't see a long period of one division dominating. I hope not at least.
How good is Cal's defense going to be next year?
They lose some good guys but the Bears have some nice young talent. Still, I'd guess it takes a step back, sans Mohamed, Jordan and four other starters.
Will USC every be as good as they were with Reggie Bush?
Yes. USC is one of those programs that will never stop being relevant.
Does installing Chow's offense put the Utes a little behind going into the first couple games??? they really can't afford to start behind!
Perhaps. It hurts that Chow won't get quality time with Jordan Wynn this spring. But my guess is Chow is plenty motivated to sink his teeth into the Utes and get the bad UCLA taste out of his mouth. He has something to prove.
You just said apples to oranges in Comparison to USC and the OSU/Oregon/AUburn. Is that to suggest there are no parameters set in place for penalties. And how so Apples to Oranges?
Violations are different. And it's hard to know how the NCAA will react or how the schools reaction will be measured. Remember: USC hurt itself by being combative instead of obsequious with the NCAA. There are always variables in play.
UW starting QB at Nebraska will be...
If I were betting, I'd say Price. But we've got a lot of practices for Montana to change my mind.
Will Alabama play USC in the National Championship next year
I noticed ASU didn't blitz as much in the last couple games to let their talent use their speed to make plays. Will we see more blitzing this year or will it be alot of read and react?
Erickson talked specifically about blitzing more this week. So I'd say yes to more blitzes.
Who's the best LB in the Pac 12 this year? My votes go to Shane Skov with Vontez Burfict a close second. I really like Stanford's Chase Thomas as well. Your thoughts?
1. Burfict; 2. Skov. Of course, that could change. A mature Burfict who puts all his game together this fall is a first-team All-American. Thomas is more of a hybrid end-OLB. Love his game.
I used to live in the PNW as well....don't you just love rubbing it in how good the weather is here to your buddies back there...
Assuming the USC postseason ban gets upheld for 2011 which team do you think is most likely to challange ASU for the Pac-12 South title?
My first response would be Arizona, even though the Wildcats have questions on both lines.
I'm a running back who can catch, block, and I have breakaway speed. How come ASU doesn't use me as a 25-touch-a-game feature back?
best-case for you and the offense is to share the ball with Deantre Lewis... seems like the best teams always give plenty of touches to the backup RB.
What is your take on the new commissioner's job so far?
Good. Aggressive.Innovative. But it all comes down to the TV deal that he puts together this summer. That's what everything else -- read: expansion -- was about.
Ted, suppose the NCAA lifts SC's bowl ban; Do you see them duking it out for a PAC-12 Championship, or at least a bowl berth this year?
Without a bowl ban, USC would be a factor in the Pac-12 south: There would no longer be any question of their motivation over a 12-game season. And I certainly think the Trojans will win enough at least to become bowl eligible, if they are eligible to play in the postseason.
How did Tedford get Shaq to commit so early?
Family ties? Tedford has really been kicking it in recruiting of late.
With the St. Patrick's Day parade only 4 days after Mardi Gras, is New Orleans trying to finally finish off my liver?
Don't drink too many grenades. Oh, I how I would love a lunch at the Palace Cafe right now.
Which players can teams not afford to lose to injury?
My take on that is to look at teams with a veteran, star QB but no experience behind him. Oregon folks really like Bryan Bennett. ORegon State's Cody Vaz looked good when I saw him. So I say: Andrew Luck and Matt Barkley would be the two biggest injury hits.
Do you feel Vontaze Burfict has matured enough to show that he can play at the next level without all of the drama? As much as it pains me to say this as a Wildcats fan, I sure love watching him play.
We should get an answer to that this year, which is almost certain his final year at ASU.
What are the chances that I lead Stanford to another BCS-berth? What about its first Heisman trophy since Plunkett?
You begin the season as the Heisman frontrunner. If you go to another BCS bowl, you'll likely win it. A lot seems to hang on your date with Oregon on the Farm this year.
Does Coach Whit and Chow coexist w/o any drama?
We shall see. The good news is Utah starts with stability at QB. Chow and Neuheisel never had that.
To what degree will CAL's new facilities help the program?
Seem to be helping already, if recruiting rankings are to be believed. Facilities are just one more thing that sells a program. Seemed to have helped the Ducks.
Does Steve Sarkisian and the Huskies have enough tigersblood to go bowling in 2011?
#Yes. #WINNING! The Huskies look like a 7-8-win team. And if things go well at QB, perhaps better.
what do you think of utah's chance of winning the pac-12 south division?
The Utes won't be my pick and I'd be mildly surprised if they did: A rebuilding secondary is not a good thing in the Pac-12, considering the quality of QBs. But Utah will be immediately competitive. I'd be more surprised if they finished last than if they won it.
Are you going toi take any questions about the cougs or continue to hate them?
tends to help if you ask a question... i just hit refresh and answer the first question that makes sense. not really picking them based on teams.
Tressel should be suspended for at least 1 season, right? Dez Bryant lied to the NCAA about a non-violation and got that much punishment. Is it disheartening to you to see Tressel's blatant violation go unpunished?
Not going to go that far but the Bryant vs. Tressel comparison is a head-scratcher.
Is there going to be a running game this season?I kinda need it
Yes you do. Or failing that some better pass blocking. Your line should be better this fall, and Rickey Galvin might give you playmaking at RB that you haven't had.
It's time to get it out in the open: please list all teams that you hate.
I hate the Anchorage Geezers.
Do you think Sark will focus more on giving Polk the ball and starting a run game? It may help me out a bit.
Polk and Callier (in fact,the Huskies have good depth at RB). With a new QB and a good RBs, you'd think the Huskies become run-first. Sort of worked late last year.
Ted, in your opinion what is more a "lack of insitutional control": A) failing to know about the family of one player on your team receiving extra benefits 120 miles away or B) failing to report the truth that 5 of your players were profiting off their status on your team?? - You know, just a hypothetical question...
hmmm... to this hypothetical I'd say "B." Bit of an oversimplification, but I understand your point.
The LSU faithful are looking forward to the season opening game against Oregon at Jerry's place. From what little that I know, it seems that most of the Duck's offensive firepower is returning. What replacements do they need to fill on the defensive side of the ball?
Ducks lose three O-linemen and three D-lineman. That's the chief concern. The backups saw significant action last year, so it's hardly a complete rebuilding. But the A-list match will be how well the Ducks O-line handles another elite front-seven that has had an extended time to prepare for Chip Kelly's up-tempo offense. I am really, really excited about that game.
How many one word responses do you think I can come up with this season?
Yeah - I wasn't a MAN; Jim Tressel is/was supposed to be in addition to the fact that I was just a "playa"; not the university's chief compliance officer for the football program. Why are we just just talking about punishing/suspending Tressel. Where's the talk about penalizing tOSU for LOIC. Hell the Gee Wiz - tOSU's president said he never considered firing Tressel."No, are you kidding me?" Gee said. "Let me be very clear. I'm just hoping the coach doesn't dismiss me." The AD was equally as supportive. "Wherever we end up at the end of the day, Jim Tressel is our football coach," Smith said. "All the speculation about him being terminated is pure speculation. This case, in my view, does not warrant it."HEY YOU NCAA - how's 'bout you asking tOSU to "show me the MONEY" and forfeit their bowl revenue for the Sugar Bowl in addition to a one yr bowl ban!
Wow... Dez... a little emotional. Do this: Go stick your ATM card in a machine. Look at your balance. Smile.
Do you see the Cal O-line making significant strides under Michalezik?
Well, he worked magic during his first run in Berkeley. Helps to have talent, though. It doesn't appear the Bears O-line is as talented today.
You think Stanford might actually sell out their game with Oregon?
Do you know much about the BYU/UTAH rivalry... do you think it is in UTAH's best interest to keep that game on schedule?
yes (to previous question)
As for BYU-Utah... they should play every year, just like GA Tech-UGA. It's a great, heated rivalry. Ending it would be stupid.
Will you ever admit you like UW more than any other Pac-10 team?
No.... I favor no team. Other than the Richmond Spiders.
It would make us feel better if you stoked our righteous indignation instead of poking holes in it.
And I'm starting to like the Anchorage Geezers more.
Why Arizona to compete for South Title? Are Colorado, Utah, and UCLA really going to be that bad that they can't beat an Arizona team that will have a new OL and new DL?
Call it my respect for Foles to Criner.
Ok gang... time for me to say goodbye. Thanks for stopping by. See you next week. Have a great weekend.