Thursday, October 30, 2008  
Life gets in the way sometimes...
Days 'til Arkansas State: 2

Yeah, it does. Sucks, I know. But, you know how it goes.

Anyway, if you don't know who Arkansas St QB Corey Leonard is, I would suggest you read here. The kid is a helluva athlete, and can beat you if you don't pay attention to what he's doing.

Arkansas State presents a good challenge for this Alabama team to finally get over the November hump. While Arkansas State is weaker than a lot of the teams on Bama's schedule, they're still tough enough to keep the team focused on doing things the right way. Read more on Ark St here.

Yup...just like a normal week against a mid-major opponent. Some guys are putting in more effort than others, and Coach Saban doesn't like it. Read more here.

I think this will be a breakout win. I'm fairly confident that we will be able to just pound the football to win this game. Should be over with early, and McElroy will get a lot of snaps to get him in position to take over the team next year.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008  
Hump day.
Days 'til Arkansas State: 3

Never overlook teams, my friend. This Arkansas State team hung 83 on Texas State earlier this year. was against a crap team...but they're still capable of putting up numbers. They opened up the year by winning at Texas A&M, which is not an easy place to win, so they've got a good football team.

However, I would suggest that we run it every down until we're up by about 21, then start throwing the ball all over the field. Break trends, my friends.

I don't have much on the docket today. Been busy, as usual. I'm still working on the new website for I haven't had much time, but hopefully that will all change once I take my MCTS test next Friday (Nov. 7th). Everybody wish me luck because that one certification will almost double my pay. And what I make right now ain't bad. Haha.

If anyone's going to the Hank Jr show for Homecoming, please please please take some pics because I know he's gonna be in his Alabama gear and I'd love to have some good shots of that.

LSU fans have already posted one billboard. Let's see how many go up before the game next weekend.

Monday, October 27, 2008  
Days 'til Arkansas St: 5

I gladly smoked a Swisher Sweet cigar after the game Saturday night. Haha. It was fabulous. This was the best game of the year so far. I loved it. Just a methodical beating. :-) Game coulda been a lot worse than it was...but it is what it is.

I'll tell you what - it's the first time that I've seen Coach Saban really excited after a win. He was jumpin up and high-fiving players and doin belly bumps with Deaderick and running all over the field to thank the Alabama fans that came out. It was awesome. And you better believe we're not going to overlook Arkansas State.

Mark McCarter has a pretty good article about how well Nick Saban fits at Alabama.

Saban even said in the press conference that this was our most complete game and that he's "never been prouder" of this football team. Read more here.

Coach Saban said that Alabama finally has an identity - "we're a blue-collar team." Hell yeah we are.

I'll have some more put up tonight. Til then... ROLL TIDE!

Friday, October 24, 2008  
One more day til...
...the Orange Massacre.

Days 'til Tennessee: 1

Let's take a look at some of the stats here. We'll just go with the basics:

Tennessee's rushing defense: 96.3 ypg
Alabama's rushing offense: 209.3 ypg

Median: Alabama rushes for 153 yards.

Tennessee's passing defense: 171.3
Alabama's passing offense: 161.9

Median: Alabama passes for 167 yards.

Alabama's total yardage will be 320 yards.

Tennessee's rushing offense: 124.6 ypg
Alabama's rushing defense: 66.1 ypg

Median: Tennessee rushes for 95 yards.

Tennessee's passing offense: 171.4 ypg
Alabama's passing defense: 209.9

Median: Tennessee passes for 191 yards.

Tennessee's total yardage will be 286 yards.

Alabama's offensive ppg: 32.3 ppg
Tennessee's defensive ppg: 16.0 ppg

Alabama's score will be: 24

Tennessee's offensive ppg: 19.7 ppg
Alabama's defensive ppg: 14.4 ppg

Tennessee's score will be: 17

That's my guess. Bama 24-17. Of gut is telling me it will be closer to last year's score...but I figured I'd go with the stats in this one. Haha.

TIME FOR THE PICKS!!! It's money, baby. :-) I'm 23-15 on the year after going 3-2 again last week. I'm lookin at a 5-0 this week though. You better believe it.

Kentucky (+25.5) at Florida
Saturday - 11:30am Raycom
--- I think Florida could kill them, but we've seen what happens when Florida goes into a game as a huge favorite. Not to mention, they could be looking ahead at some revenge for next week against Georgia. Go along with another interesting stat - 18 of 25 SEC games have been decided by single digits. And the underdog has covered the spread about 80% of the time in the SEC. I'm gonna go with Kentucky to cover that many points.

Wyoming at TCU (-31)
Saturday - 5pm The Mtn.
--- Wyoming is just awful and TCU can put the beatdown on anybody. And y'know what's scary? They've got a loss to Oklahoma and are still close enough to be in on the BCS busting. Could be the first time we'll have a BCS buster with a loss. You better believe they'll thrash Wyoming, especially at home, for some style points.

Ole Miss (-6) at Arkansas
Saturday - 6pm
--- Arkansas has looked better...against Auburn and Kentucky. Not great teams. Ole Miss isn't great by any means, but I think Houston Nutt will have these guys absolutely fired up to CRUSH the Razorbacks. 2 touchdowns at least here, if not more.

UGA (+2) at LSU
Saturday - 2:30pm CBS
--- Mark Richt, in true road games, is something ridiculous like 26-4 straight up on the road since he took over. I still don't believe that LSU's line play is very good, which should just about equal out against Georgia. I think Charles Scott and Knowshon Moreno equal each other out. So then it comes down to quarterbacks and special teams. I'll give the edge to Georgia in that one. UGA pulls out a close one in the 4th quarter.

New Mexico St (-14) at Idaho
--- It's pretty much a given that I'm going to bet against Wyoming and Idaho every week. Idaho got thrashed by Louisiana Tech last week, and New Mexico State has a pretty prolific offense. I don't think the Vandals will be able to keep them off the scoreboard. The Aggies aren't that great on defense either, but Idaho is MUCH worse.

Thursday, October 23, 2008  
Somethin about Thursdays...
Days 'til Tennessee: 2

2 days til the beatdown in Knoxville. It's lookin like it might rain, which could mean even less people in the stands than there have been lately. It's starting to hit the university in the pocketbook too. Mike Hamilton said that the amount of people that left during the Florida game cost the University over $90,000 in concessions alone. That's big, man.

With the chance of rain, that could lead to a slugfest football game, which would be to our advantage, it would seem. I don't think "the Clawfense" will work very well in the rain, and I don't think Adrian Foster can hold on to the football when it's dry...much less if it's wet.

Kenny Stabler was found not guilty in his DUI case. That's definitely good news. He'll be back in the booth next year. I gotta admit...I miss him on the radio broadcasts.

One guy on the defensive line that we'll need to have step up this weekend would be Luther Davis. You can read more about how he's worked his way back up the depth chart here.

Glen Coffee is still taking the blame for the fumble in the Ole Miss game. That's cool with me. Read more about his fumbleitis here.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008  
Midweek blues.
Days 'til Ole Miss: 3

Man, it's only Wednesday? Yiiikes.

I'm about dead, man. I went to see GWAR last night at the New Daisy. This makes 6 times that I've seen them. That show is always the absolute most ridiculous thing I've ever seen. Nuts man.'s fun. Haha. If it's coming near any of you, I would recommend going out to see the "Electile Dysfunction Tour." Hahahaah.

Ohhhh yeah.

Scarbinsky writes about how, on Saturday, Coach Saban can finish what he started some 7 years ago when he beat #2 Tennessee in the SEC championship game: Phillip Fulmer's demise. The UT program hasn't been the same since they lost that game and a shot at a 2nd BCS title.

The New York Times has an article about the University of Alabama's investment in Coach Saban - and how it's paying off.

Tony Barnhart has a pretty good blog about possible BCS Doomsday scenarios. Read up here.

John Adams, from the Knoxville News-Sentinel, talks about how Alabama's success so far this year is "fuzzy." Good read, really.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008  
I'll tell ya what.
Days 'til Tennessee: 4

I sure am glad that WJOX out of Birmingham has a live stream. I've been listening to these guys for quite some time now. Haha. Ain't nothin like it in Memphis.

Arizona is back in a love affair with the Crimson Tide. Reminds you of 1992, right? Read up here.

Mr. Cody appears to be doing ok. I like the way Coach Saban put it yesterday - "He'll probably be out 2 weeks." Here's what's gonna happen: Monday of LSU week, Terrence Cody will be listed as doubtful. He won't be allowed to practice while the media is there. Everyone will talk about how it doesn't look like he's going to play. Then, on Saturday night in Tiger Stadium, he'll be the starter and it'll look like he never got injured. Haha.

Read up on Cody's injury, and how he's rehabbing here.

Here's a scary proposition for opposing offensive lines - Josh Chapman is even stronger than Terrence Cody. No, he doesn't weigh as much, but he's stronger. As a matter of fact, he's the strongest guy on the team.

Once again, I've got a good feeling about the game this weekend in Knoxville. I think that, if we got to 4 down, we'll have more speed on the line than usual on defense, and it'll help us with quarterback pressure, I think. Cody wasn't a pass rusher - but we'll definitely pin the ears back and go after Nick Stephens on Saturday night. I'd look for a pick 6, and at least 2 more turnovers besides that one.

Monday, October 20, 2008  
Days 'til Tennessee: 5

Man. I hate sweating out ballgames. But, that's exactly what happened on Saturday.

I just get this feeling that they're holding something back for LSU. It may creep up and bite us in the ass this weekend at UT, but it just feels like, in the 2nd half, they're getting conservative and trying to bust trends more than kick ass. That's fine with me, as long as we keep winning...but it's just getting a lil bit too close, y'know?

But, alas, a win is a win, and that's fine with me.

Things don't look too good for Mount Cody. It appears he will be out 3-4 weeks, which is NOT cool, because that includes the LSU game. I think we might can get through UT and Arkansas State without him. Maybe not the LSU game. But, I could be wrong about that. I think the guys we have are capable...but there's such a drop off from Cody to Nick Gentry it's ridiculous.

Here's hoping everything goes ok over the next 2 weeks and maybe he's back in time for the LSU game. Cause we'll need him in that one.

Tennessee has some injury issues as well. Gerald Jones is out for the game with a high-ankle sprain, as is senior offensive lineman Anthony Parker. Both of these guys were starters and big-time contributors. I guess that MAYBE that equals out to Terrence Cody. Maybe.

Regardless, we're gonna have to play one hell of a game Saturday night to be able to escape Knoxville with a win. Game time is 6:45pm CST on ESPN. Which might be better for us. Haha.

Friday, October 17, 2008  
It's about that time...
Days 'til Ole Miss: 1

I'm not gonna have much of an update today. Been hectic at work.

But I will say this. I feel really comfortable about this game Saturday with the Rebels. Like, Georgia game comfortable. I've just got a really good feeling about it.

I'm not gonna go into a big statistics thing about why we should win. Instead, I'll just say that I feel good about it.

Roll Tide guys! Have an awesome weekend, and I'll talk to you again on Sunday!

Thursday, October 16, 2008  
Woooohoooo. Thursdey.
Days 'til Ole Miss: 2

Yipee Kiyae. Is that how you spell that? Hmm.

Anyway, we're getting closer to gametime. As a matter of fact, we're only 2 days away...and that's exciting, considering it's been 12 days since the Tide last played football where we could see it.

Here's a few quick hitters that could be good for Saturday's game:

  • Ole Miss ranks last in the SEC in passing defense.

  • Ole Miss has given up the most first downs in the SEC.

  • Ole MIss ranks 9th (of 12) in the SEC in rushing defense.

  • Ole Miss WR Mike Wallace's kickoff-return yardage totals for the past three games rank among the 11 top single-game performances in school history.

  • Ole Miss ranks 107th in the country in turnover margin (-6).

  • These things come back to haunt people. I placed one in there because I'm still not convinced that our special teams is THAT much better. I just don't think Kentucky was that good at exploiting it.

    Coach Saban gave Ian quite a history lesson, after Ian compared the Wildcat formation to the Single Wing from WAAAY back. Read more here.

    Kirk McNair gives us a rundown of Coach Saban's presser - here. It's long, but informative.

    Another note - Ole Miss has lost each of their last 4 games that were broadcast on CBS. Now I don't feel so bad about our record on there lately.

    Time for PICKS!!! I'm now 20-13 on the year, which is a 61% winning percentage. Not too shabby. I think we'll do better this week.

    Florida St at NC State (+11)
    TONIGHT - 7:30pm ESPN
    --- Again, I don't really like the matchup...but it's a home dog on a weeknight on ESPN. How many times can I say it?

    Ga Tech (-2.5) at Clemson
    --- Georgia Tech is really hitting on all cylinders (even though they looked crappy against Gardner Webb) and Clemson just fired their coach. This one's tough to gauge because you would think that maybe, since the team didn't really like Bowden, Clemson will start to click this week, but I have a feeling that they'll be in disarray just like Auburn was last week. Too many distractions to play against Paul Johnson's offensive attack. The Yellow Jackets may have 300+ yards rushing in this game. I expect a 2 TD victory.

    Miss St (+8) at Tennessee
    --- You've gotta wonder...why would Tennessee be favored over ANY SEC team this year? And yet, they're more than a touchdown favorite over Mississippi State, who just upset undefeated Vanderbilt, and has finally found a QB that can throw the football. This one could be all she wrote for Fat Phil - Bullies straight up over UT.

    Missouri (+6.5) at Texas
    --- Yup. The #1 team in the country at home against a team that's pissed off. I don't think that Missouri is that good, but I don't see how Texas can avoid a letdown. If the Longhorns do win, it'll be by a field goal. Honestly, I expect Chase Daniel to have a field day on the Texas secondary, which I still don't think is very good. Daniel is better than Bradford (from OU) so a little pressure is not going to throw him off as much. CD just had a bad game against OSU. I think Missou could win this one straight up.

    Idaho at Louisiana Tech (-20.5)
    --- Fresno State sucked last week...but Coach Dooley won't let us down. Less than a 3 touchdown favorite at home against the worst team in the country? After they've had to travel from Cali to Louisiana? Yeah...beatdown of epic proportions here. La Tech by 35.

    Wednesday, October 15, 2008  
    It's hump day.
    Days 'til Ole Miss: 3

    Totally off-topic, but we'll start out with LSU's drop in confidence going to Columbia, SC this week. Funny, to say the least. Read more here.

    Greg Hardy absolutely destroyed us last year in Oxford. He victimized Mike Johnson at Right Tackle like he was a freshman in high school. It was ridiculous. But...we won the game. Read more about Hardy's performance, and what Bama players thought of it here.

    JPW is a finalist for the Unitas award. How, I don't know. I guess not losing, and not throwing many picks, can make you look really good. They haven't had to throw it hides some of the flaws. But it's still awesome for John Parker to be recognized. Congrats, yo.

    The line has moved from opening at 14.5 down to 13 in the Ole Miss / Bama game. I'm still confident. Much more so than before, because of how much the public is moving the game, and it's only Wednesday. If it drops to 12, I'm loading up on Bama.

    I'm doin my best to not pay attention to the crap that's happening over at Auburn...but it's kinda tough. Read Finebaum's latest article.

    Tuesday, October 14, 2008  
    Tuesday's almost gone...with the wind.
    Days 'til Ole Miss: 4

    Good article about the other offensive lineman - Tight End Travis McCall. Read up on it here. It talks about how effective the run is when he goes in motion and sets up behind Mike Johnson and Andre Smith. Aww yeah.

    You want a recession-proof industry? Selling Crimson Tide gear. Haha. Read more about how the fans are warmed up this season.

    Coach Saban's press conference helped point out that they're focusing on how to play the game of football correctly, not necessarily winning the game. It's what he's been preaching forever, and what the team is buying into. It's not winning - it's doing the things needed to win. How you tackle, where you lineup, how you block, etc. Read more here.

    I'm getting confident about Saturday's game against Ole Miss. The guys all seem to be in the right mindset. They're going about it as business as usual. Nobody's overly happy - they're focused.

    I said this once before this year - I think their QB is going to have trouble distinguishing the colors of the jerseys on Saturday. Snead is still young, and anytime he gets pressured, he turns into a gunslinger and tries to put the ball in places he can't. Florida didn't get very much pressure on him, but I think with the defensive schemes that Coach Saban will be bringing, he'll have to get rid of the ball quicker than he wants, which sets our defense up for a very big day. The rebels have had a ton of trouble holding onto the I'd look for that to be a big part of the game on Saturday.

    Monday, October 13, 2008  
    New week.
    Days 'til Ole Miss: 5

    Yessir, it's gameweek.

    Couldn't get any better than that, my friend. Auburn, Tennessee, and LSU all losing on the same weekend, along with every team that was ranked ahead of the Tide in the polls.

    Made for a fun weekend.

    I noticed we're 13.5 point favorites over Ole Miss this weekend. I don't think I really like that we're favored by that much, but I guess it doesn't really matter.

    Tommy Bowden was fired at Clemson. I guess the boosters decided they didn't want to wait until Tommy found a way to save his job late in the year again. Raise your hands if you didn't see that one coming. ...I don't see any.

    I'll have more tomorrow - there's not much going on today. :-)

    Oh, and on a week when all the major handicappers did awful, I went 3-3 (including Thursday night). Not too shabby. That moves my record to 20-13 on the year.

    Friday, October 10, 2008  
    Easy money, baby.
    Days 'til Ole Miss: 8

    Really? Are there still people out there that are going against this trend? I mean, I post on last night, letting everyone in there know that Wake Forest was going to win the game, and I still see people picking Clemson.

    C'mon guys. Easy money.

    Anyway, the new is up and running, so that's cool. Other than that, it just another boring Friday. I'm sure I'll post more tomorrow. Til then, you guys have a great weekend!

    Thursday, October 09, 2008  
    Well, I went 3-2 last week, which makes me 17-10 on the year, which ain't half bad. I'll pick 6 today, and you'll have to get your money in quick on the Clemson - Wake game tonight.

    Clemson at Wake Forest (+1.5)
    TONIGHT - 7:30pm ESPN
    --- What can I say? Home underdog on a Thursday night on ESPN. Gotta take the deacons in this one.

    Utah (-23) at Wyoming
    Saturday - 1:00pm
    --- We won playing against Wyoming again last week. No reason to play any differently with a pretty good Utah team this week.

    New Mexico at BYU (-23.5)
    Saturday - 5:00pm
    --- BYU didn't cover for us last week, but they were playing on a Friday night on the road. Remember about home dogs on weeknights? Yeah. I didn't follow my own advice. I think it was just a fluke. They should crush New Mexico this week.

    Ball St (-16.5) at Western Kentucky
    Saturday - 6:00pm
    --- Ball State is in the top 25, and their offense is just ridiculously good. Western Kentucky put up a helluva fight against a shitty VaTech team. I think Ball State should destroy this team by 30.

    Tulsa (-24) at SMU
    Saturday - 7:00pm
    --- Ahh...this is the game where June Jones finally picks off one of the higher ups, right? Wrong. Tulsa is clicking on cylinders right now, and SMU couldn't stop me and two other fat guys from my office. Tulsa may hang 70 this week.

    Idaho at Fresno St (-34.5)
    Saturday - 9:00pm
    --- Dude. Idaho is just bad. I mean really really really bad. Ain't no two ways to spin that. Not to mention that Fresno State is pissed off after losing in OT to Hawaii. Go Bulldogs, son.

    Snap, son.

    Yup. The new Daniel Moore print - or at least the initial sketch. If you'd like to pre-order the sketch or the full-color edition, please go here.

    Days 'til Ole Miss: 9

    Bye bye, Spread Eagle.

    Tony Franklin's Spread Eagle offense didn't exactly work out very well. Apparently, he was told to get lost by Auburn officials. There are rumors of a gash on his head, and there's a lot of smoke coming from Auburn. And you know what we say here at Memphis Tider -- where there's smoke, there's usually fire. Something's going to come out of this...and I'm lovin it.

    The Daily Journal from Tupelo, MS talks about the one thing standing between Ole Miss and a 6-0 record: turnovers. In their 3 losses, they have given away the football 12 times, and only taken it 4. That's -8 in turnover margin, which is HORRIBLE. Hell, they had 6 against Vanderbilt, including a fumble by McCluster inside the 10 heading into the endzone for the game winning touchdown. Read more here.

    If you haven't already, go check out People upload football games pretty regularly, so if you're wanting to watch some game film of somebody that we're playing soon, then I'd recommend it. Just by watching a lil bit of game film, I'd be willing to wager that we'll see some crazy stuff from Houston Nutt and his staff. He really loves that whole "Wild Rebel" thing. I can't wait to see it.

    Wednesday, October 08, 2008  
    Only 2 more days til the weekend.
    Days 'til Ole Miss: 10

    CBS picked up the Alabama vs Ole Miss game. Count me as surprised. I figured LSU and South Carolina would be the pick...but I think the shine is fading off both the Tigers and the Cocks. I guess they didn't wanna go to Georgia two weeks in a row either, cause I thought a 6-0 Vandy would be an attractive game.

    Do you realize that, if Vandy were to handle Mississippi State, and then beat Georgia, they'd have, essentially, a 3 game lead on Georgia in the SEC race? Holy crap. Same thing with Florida - cause if Florida loses to LSU on Saturday, they'll have 2 losses in the conference.

    If you'd like to read something fun, check out this post "Auburn Woes are Saban's Fault" over at Interesting message.

    Bye weeks tend to get rather boring. I'm sure we'll have something more interesting tomorrow. :-) Cheers!

    Tuesday, October 07, 2008  
    Days 'til Ole Miss: 11

    When it comes down to it - we did, at least, win the game. But, when you look back on it, we completely gave them the football game. Fumbles, interceptions, penalties and just poor gameplay in general. But, after playing football for 6 straight weeks, you almost had to expect it.

    Kentucky is a good football team. Their defensive line is a beast, and, even though we won the line of scrimmage, they kept us on our toes the whole ballgame. Kinda weird that I'm talking good about their defensive line when Glen Coffee had 218 yards rushing against them. Haha.

    Speaking of Glen, he's now carried the football 96 times for 710 yards. That's an INCREDIBLE 7.4 ypc, and 118 yards per game. And that's splitting carries with Ingram and Upchurch. Yeah. Damn.

    Coach didn't seem quite so upset this week as he did after last week. I think he realizes that this team is tired. As he said, this bye week comes at a good time. Josh Cooper chimes in on how the weary Tide needs a break.

    Darrington Sentimore, a DE from Louisiana, committed to Alabama after the weekend. He was waiting on an offer from LSU, but accepted our offer and has said his recruiting is finished. Read more on him here.

    ESPN has released the Mock-BCS poll, and Alabama is #2. I guess the most surprising, to me, is Vandy and Utah being in the top 10. Now that's interesting.

    Also, I didn't realize that Gene Stallings and Nick Saban had the exact same record through their first 19 games. 13-6. Read more here.

    Glen Coffee gets to carry a football around campus with him all the time. He has to keep holding onto the football. Now that's awesome. I don't even wanna know the punishment if he drops it in front of the coaches.

    Cecil brought up something that I have been thinking a lot about - this team reminds me of a Gene Stallings football team. Read more here.

    I'm hearing that the Ole Miss game will be an ESPN game, which would mean 5:45 or 6:45 kickoff, most likely. I'm thinking LSU / South Carolina would be the CBS game.

    Thursday, October 02, 2008  
    Days 'til Kentucky: 1

    Almost there. Been working all week for this one. Gotta take care of business.

    I hate sarcastic assholes. Here's one more reason to get fired up for Saturday.

    Didn't get to post Faimon's Bonehead Call of the Week yesterday, but it's here for today. Check out Pelican State Sports for my call.

    The Vols implosion continued this week with another bonehead play. The struggles of the Clawfense are well known, but there is no excuse for giving the ball to Arian Foster in a situation where a turnover could hurt. He has shown little more than the ability to fumble at inopportune times, which of course he did here, providing the Tigers/War Eagles/Plainsmen with the points they needed for the victory. It might seem that a straight lead handoff might be the safest play when one is backed up to one's own goalline, and that is true. However, any fan who was watching the game knew that something terrible was about to happen for the Vols, and it did. The only ones less surprised to see the ball on the ground were the Auburn defenders, who promptly jumped on it and celebrated. Tennessee had better improve and it better be dramatic, because right now Fulmer looks like Steinbeck's Lennie having the theory of relativity explained to him, and the rest of the team just looks inept and disinterested.

    Eli Gold says that Nick Saban is the most focused man he has ever seen in his entire life. Read more here.

    The Bleacher Report has a fun article about that 2nd year magic, and goes on to detail coaches who have won National Championships in their 2nd year recently.

    Coach Saban will be on SportsCenter on Sunday. Not sure what time. Ask Ian. He seems to know. Haha.

    Gas prices ain't keepin us down, yo. :-) Just ask Georgia. Haha. Read more here.

    More on the game tomorrow, hopefully.

    Thursday = Picks!
    Days 'til Kentucky: 2

    We'll start off today with USAToday's story about Dreamland's 50th anniversary. I had no idea that they started around the same time as Coach Bryant. Interesting, to say the least.

    Anyway, on with what you're REALLY here for.

    Badabing badaboom. I smell money, son. Picks time. This is my official "pick against bad teams" week. It's ridiculous how this works. Should be simple.

    Wyoming at New Mexico (-12)
    Saturday - 8:30pm The Mtn.
    --- Yup. Wyoming is AWFUL. I don't believe they've covered a spread in any single game this year. Their coach, Joe Glenn, is actually on the hot seat because they're so bad. Playing at New Mexico, a team that beat Arizona earlier this season, they should get their teeth kicked in soundly. New Mexico has a lot of weapons, so I expect this to be a mauling. How it's only 12, I'll never know.

    Maryland (-13.5) at Virginia
    Saturday - 6:00 ESPNU
    --- Ok, let me get this straight. Maryland just beat Clemson, at Clemson, to go to 4-1 on the season. Their only loss being at the hands of Middle Tennessee State before the Terps finally found how to win. That's two wins over California and Clemson in the past 3 weeks. Virginia, in the meantime, was beaten at home by USC 52-7, at UConn 45-10, and at Duke 31-3. Their only win was against Division 1-AA Richmond, and they only won that one 16-0. This team is really bad, and Maryland looks to be getting better. Should be an easy win for the Terps.

    Penn St (-13.5) at Purdue
    Saturday - 11:05pm ESPN
    --- Penn State's defense is FAST. And Purdue showed their real colors last week against Notre Dame, losing 38-21, and were blasted in the process. Penn State is the real deal, and it doesn't matter that the game is being played at Purdue. Penn State should roll by 3 touchdowns in this game. Easy.

    BYU (-28.5) at Utah St
    Friday - 7:00pm No TV
    --- Utah State are 2-7 against the spread in their last 9 home games, and they were 1-7 before they played the worst team in the country last week (Idaho). BYU hasn't allowed a point in the past two ballgames, winning by a combined score of 103-0. I don't look for it to get much better for Utah State, who lost to Utah 58-10, and Oregon 66-24. They've been SMOKED, and BYU is clicking on all cylinders. I'd expect a bigtime blowout here.

    Florida (-25) at Arkansas
    Saturday - 11:30am Raycom
    --- Yikes. Florida is pissed off, and Arkansas sucks. How is this line not 50? I would expect Urban Meyer, who knows all about needing style points, etc, to run this score up as much as he wants to. Petrino's team is just awful, and Florida has more athletes than Texas and Alabama (at least you would assume). Speed, speed, speed, my friends, and Arkansas has NOTHING like what Florida has. If the Arkansas defense thought Glen Coffee was fast, just wait til they see Percy Harvin. Florida could score 70 in this game. It'll be UGLY.

    Now, enough about that. Back to the game that matters. What have we learned about Kentucky? Let's go down the list.

  • Their turnover margin is awesome.
  • Their defensive line is one of the best in the conference.
  • Their quarterback is a good game manager (but not a good thrower).
  • Their special teams are scary good.
  • They have good team speed.

    Now, let's focus on Kentucky's weaknesses. Their qb, Mike Hartline, isn't setting the world on fire. 3 Touchdown passes in 4 games against Louisville, Norfolk St, Middle Tennessee, and Western Kentucky isn't exactly impressive. However, he has managed the games well, and has only thrown one interception this year.

    From everything that I've gathered, their receivers, shy of Lyons, have been pathetic all season. Running the wrong routes, dropping passes, etc. I haven't seen much of them this season, but they haven't been very impressive. I guess there's a reason why Hartline's only averaging 5.15 yards per reception.

    Their run blocking has been abysmal, so that should be good for our defensive line. They've got some quick running backs, but they don't look like they'll be powering the ball down our throats.

    Just like us, while Kentucky is awesome at returning kicks (both punts and kickoffs), they are equally as bad on kick coverage. Javier should have a good day.

    As good as I've been making them look, they do have flaws that we can exploit. The key to any good gameplan is taking control of the other team's weaknesses. That's how you win football games. That's what happened against Georgia, against Clemson, and pretty much every other team we've played. If they're weak on the line of scrimmage, hit them in the mouth. It's smooth sailing from there.

    I look for Alabama to us Terry Grant a little more in this game. He's still our fastest tailback, but he's not a power runner. Kentucky's weakness isn't their defensive line (although I may be wrong about this), so I'd look for more screen passes and maybe more sweeps to get Grant, Scott, and Maze into space.

    On a sidenote, on the USAToday matchups page, I noticed that Josh Chapman is listed as Questionable for Saturday with an ankle injury. Of course, it has Kentucky listed with no injuries at all, so I don't know exactly how accurate this thing is.

    Wednesday, October 01, 2008  
    Pops Tider's first post
    For several years now we have seen the dumbing down of our fan base. From missed holding calls to excuses for lack of on field discipline, some of us have complained and cried and become no better than some of our conference brethren.

    We have all made it convenient to believe that SEC officials are not very good.

    This first post is to attempt to turn that thought process around. Not that it mattered, but I was left with my mouth hanging open at the missed call in the La. Tech – Boise game Wednesday night. It mirrored the call in the Bama – Ole Miss game last year and the replay official in Boise simply blew it. Not because he made a poor judgment but because he (like many Alabama and Mississippi sports writers and Ole Miss fans) doesn’t know the rule. The SEC officials know the rule, what they can review and what they can’t and why. The on field officials in Boise didn’t know and they got no help from the replay booth---even though they had plenty of time to go look up the rule if they wanted.

    Be prepared to hear the Rebels whine even more now that they think they have a call that matches and was made for a team in their same position. Be prepared, as we get better and begin to show that the process is working, to listen to the taunts of the corndogs, bulldogs, tigers, and gators that some of us older fans endured while Coach Bryant was walking the sidelines-----“Ya’ll bought the refs!”

    To review the play, a Boise receiver went out of bounds (with some minor contact) and came back in to make a catch. It was called a catch on the field and the replay showed he had gone out of bounds. At the point he left the field of play he is ineligible to be the first to touch the ball and he plainly came back in bounds and was the first to touch the ball. But the on-field official did not rule him out of bounds. When the replay showed he was out of bounds, he is not eligible. Because he was not “ruled” on the field to have been forced out, the only thing the replay official can rule on is whether he went out of bounds. Whether he was “forced” out is not something that can be reviewed. That is like pass interference and cannot be ruled on from the booth. The only review is if the receiver was out of bounds.

    They blew it.

    We’ll not notice it (until we hear the howls of the conquered). Us older guys expect it. It’s coming. On field discipline will yield respect. A knowledgeable staff, a disciplined team and respect will get you the benefit of the doubt. Lack of penalties leads to even less penalties and more frustration from the opponent---which leads to more mistakes for them. I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait to hear Tennessee complain about the conference office and the officials.

    - Pops Tider

    Mid-week hump.
    Days 'til Kentucky: 3

    The Alexander City Outlook has a good article about how Auburn needs to change something, and quickly, before all hope for the season is lost. Read more here. I find it funny that, even though they're 4-1, they're still so worried about the season going in the tank. That's what the Process will do to ya.

    Ahhh yes. Haters. Gotta love em. Read Charles Prince's commentary on Alabama and their national title hopes here.

    The LSU Beat, from the New Orleans Times-Picayune, thinks Bama has an easier road to 12-0 than LSU does. Y'know, instead of reading this crap, I should be focusing on Kentucky.

    Kentucky's got one hell of a defensive line. The SEC coaches seemed to think that their line is the best in the conference. Which should make running between the tackles difficult. Unless, of course, you hit them in the mouth first and take control of the line of scrimmage early.

    We'll have picks tomorrow! I'm feeling pretty good about this card. So get ready to make some cash. Haha.


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