Ivan is running a few minutes late, but he'll be here shortly!
Hi, everyone. I'm here. But I'm warning you. I may text you in midchat that I'm taking a job on another website.
Hi Ivan, do you think Penn State will ever be relevant again? Would any high profile coach even want to coach there again and can things be turned around?
"Again" covers a lot of ground, Eddie. Penn State will be back. How quickly will depend on how well they manage this transition. If done well, they won't dip at all. If done poorly, it could be a decade. That's what happened at Alabama after Bryant died.
Do you remember a time with so many bizarre coaching moves, like Weis, Graham, RRod, Malzahn (at Ark St?) and throw in Edsall for good measure? I may wish Schiano won a little more, but at least he's got character, integrity and loyalty.
You're covering a lot of ground, too, Dave. Edsall and Graham are one thing. Weis and Malzahn going "down market" is a different subject. In one sense, I don't blame coaches. ADs are so quick to pull the trigger these days that loyalty is lacking on both sides. But you can't leave your team by sending a text. You just can't.
Ivan, Tom Bradley must really be kicking himself now for not acing that Pitt interview last year, huh?
If Pitt is smart, they'll snatch up Bradley now.
Ivan, liked your piece on the bowls. Do you think the bowl system could work by possibly moving them to the beggining of the season rather than the end? The neautral site kickoff games have been extremely successful. It's not like the bowls are looking a team's resume anymore so let them choose who they want to play in the games.
Clay, I like the idea but you're forgetting a key part of the bowls' appeal. It's a virtual or real escape from the miserable weather up north, even if it's only for three hours. That's why the Rose Bowl started in the first place.
Ivan = another website? You'll be joining former colleagues Forde and Feldman in leaving ESPN? What's going on? I could care less about Forde but you & Feldman are serious losses.
No, Paul. In fact, I just signed a new contract here. I was riffing on Todd Graham's departure from Pitt to Arizona State.
Ivan, a friend of mine is making a point that Jim McElwain may be very distracted prior to the NCG. He does have to get his staff in place at Colorado State, Recruit, Etc... How will he stay focused and give his Alabama offensive play calling duties their due diligence?
It's hard to do. Mark Richt tried and failed when he left Florida State for Georgia in 2000. Bo Pelini had better luck when he left LSU for Nebraska in 2007.
Who won the coaching search battle?
In your state? I'd say UA. RichRod has won more than Graham, and he won't carry the baggage of his departure with him to the desert.
Ivan, I have read more columnists that question why Oklahoma State was not chosen for the National Title game - please explain if Alabama would have even been given consideration if the tables had been reversed and it was Alabama that had lost to a 6-6 team (Vanderbilt, for example). That loss would have knocked Alabama completely out of contention, don't you agree?
Yes, given the rest of Bama's schedule. Oklahoma State played a much tougher schedule, which is why they hung in there despite the loss.
Hey Ivan why is it such a difficult thing for you to say "Oregon?"
I have corrected myself over the last month of podcasts. But you're not the first person to tell me that I talk funny. I'm from Alabama.
Dear IvanCould you see Mike Shula coaching anywhere?
I have heard through the grapevine that Shula is interested in returning to the college game as a head coach. He's going to have to find the right AD and make a connection with him. He has maintained a low profile since returning to the NFL -- by choice -- but that may have hindered him in regards to becoming a head coach again. ADs like high profiles. High profiles sell tickets.
You're take on why Barkley wasn't invited to the Heisman...NCAA hangover? Your thoughts on whether he comes back for senior season?
The Heisman people invite the top votegetters. They don't know who has received how many votes. The accounting firm gives them the names to invite. That's why Barkley didn't get an invitation. Selfishly, I hope he comes back for his senior year. He'd have the shortest path to the Heisman and USC would benefit, too. The Trojans are bowl-eligible next year.
I agree with pitt grabbing Bradley. they already interviewed him twice. pick up the phone make an offer, shortest search in history but penn state would have to be very upfront with him on his chances for that job
Bradley has been told he will get a fair shake. And Dave Joyner, the interim AD, has a son who played for Bradley. Joyner knows him well and I have to think he wouldn't stand in Bradley's way if PSU is going to move outside the staff.
Ivan - I've read lots of reports about Bo Pelini hiring Mike Stoops. Opinions about the wisdom of that are all over the map. What's your take? Would it help? Would it free Pelinio to be a better CEO and head coach? Would it help recruiting? I'd like to hear your analysis of this situation. Thanks.
Given the relationship between the Pelini family and the Stoops family, I can't help but think this would be a good thing. They have known each other all their lives. What you don't know is if Pelini decides he will become a CEO. It's not automatic that hiring Stoops will mean Pelini will do that.
Your take on ASU's hire? Honest first impression, was it a good move or not?
Todd Graham is a good football coach. But this will be his fourth school in what? Six seasons? It's difficult not to see that elephant in the room, especially with the way he handled his departure from Pitt.
What insight's can you quickly provide on the new OC and DC at Ohio State?
Fickell will provide continuity and a lot of defensive smarts, as will Everett Winters. I don't know a whole lot about Tom Herman on the offensive side of the ball. I know that Paul Rhoads at Iowa State is an underrated coach, and Herman has been one reason the Cyclones have been a dangerous team.
So, the Touchdown Club of Columbus gives Kellen Moore the Quarterback of the Year award for the second season...then names it after him. Yet nobody in the national media has said anything. I know that the Heisman, O'Brien, and Maxwell awards may be bigger deals to some, but when was the last time a QB award was named after an active player? BTW; others who have won are Colt McCoy, Matt Leinart, Tim Tebow, Jason White, and more.
I did not see that story. Thanks for letting me know. I am looking forward to celebrating Moore's last game next week. He has been a joy to watch for four seasons.
Do you see the Washington Huskies getting to a Rose bowl in the next 4 years?
I think Steve Sarkisian is a very good coach. I think it's possible, yes. The question will be catching up to Oregon and Stanford. I think getting into the redone Husky Stadium in 2013 only will help Sarkisian.
Are you shocked by the hiring of Gus Malzahn at Arkansas State and Jim McElwain at Colorado State? It seems they took a significant step down to become head coaches.
Both guys are going home or pretty close to it. Malzahn coached across state in northwest Arkansas. McElwain is from Montana, so Fort Collins is almost home. That explains why both guys made the move.
Ivan How good can Georgia be next year since we are returning 17of 22 starters?
Aaron Murray improved tremendously over the course of the season. So did the entire defense. He could use a receiver who can stretch the field and give Crowell room to run. But to answer your question, I like Georgia a lot for next season.
How does your colleague Craig James have a AP vote? This guy has two loss teams in front of one loss teams that beat the two loss teams. And you don't want a playoff? A memo to all voters and ESPN employees: Whoever beats a team and have the same amount of losses, the team that won is the better team.
The AP doles out votes based on how many FBS schools there are in each state, as well as saving a couple of national votes for the networks, magazines, websites, etc. I voted from 1987-2002.
Oklahoma State played a much tougher schedule than Alabama??? Are you serious? Both Texas and OU are down this season...not really sure where the Big 12 is hanging their hat. And when Arkansas blows out 10 win Big 12er Kansas St in the Cotton Bowl, comments like that will look even more foolish. Looking at very early Top 10 pre-season lists, Bama could be facing 4 teams in the pre-season Top 10 next year...and Boise will still probably have a tougher SOS in the computers. Crazy.
Chad, read the rankings and the BCS ratings.
Do you see Cal improving in 2012, or will Tedford be on the hot seat after a another mediocre season?
I think the price of poker in the Pac-12 North has gotten a lot more expensive. Oregon and Stanford are in the top five. Washington is on the way back. Washington State just hired Mike Leach, and Mike Riley has been winning at Oregon State. Tedford will have a brand new stadium and brand new facilities next season. Let's see how well he and the Bears take advantage of them.
What will Fickell's title be under Urban?
Hasn't been announced yet. No one really likes, "Former interim head coach."
Oh, the BCS ratings are infallible. I see.
Joe, snark does not become you.
OK, guys. Thanks. Be sure to come back next Wednesday for our pre-Xmas, first-day-of-Hanukkah chat. It's an annual must read. Talk to you next week.