Kevin’s Keen Observations from College Football Week 1

Kevin’s Keen Observations from College Football Week 1

 1.  To get things started, how about the pathetic showing from the ACC, Big Ten, and Big East conferences. Clemson was considered the best team in the ACC until they forgot about the game on Saturday night. We all figured it was a matter of time until Tommy Bowden screwed it up, but the first game? They just looked horrible. Virginia Tech went down against East Carolina, South Carolina made N.C. St. look like a little league team, USC thought they were playing Mater Dei High School when in fact it was Virginia, and Maryland and North Carolina barely escaped versus Delaware and McNeese St. respectively. Wake Forest is the only hope for the ACC to recover.

The Big Ten was just as bad, as the only 3 teams who played anyone, Michigan, Michigan St., and Illinois, all lost. All of the other teams played complete cupcakes, and some of them even struggled against the likes of Akron and Western Kentucky. I said before the Big Ten is awful this year, and it is going to take Purdue to beat Oregon and Ohio St. to take down USC if they are going to get any of my respect.

The Big East did not fair any better. Pitt lost to Bowling Green, Rutgers lost to Fresno St., and Louisville lost to Kentucky, and they were all in their home stadium. In fact, if you take out the first quarter of the Pitt, Bowling Green game the combined score was 78-12. Yikes!! Only Syracuse played another FCS team, and got blown out against Northwestern. These conferences have some work to do to get some mojo back.

2.   Speaking of bad debuts, how about Mike Sherman’s debut for Texas A&M. I know you want to make your mark and put your systems in, but a loss to the Red Wolves of Arkansas St. in College Station is not the start you want. It looks like it’s going to be a long year for “The 12th Man”.

3.  And speaking of long years, how many wins will Michigan wind up with. The loss to Utah was not an upset, the Utes are the better team, but their offense was painful to watch. After seeing Terrelle Pryor play for the Buckeyes, how many fans wish he came to Ann Arbor to run Rich Rodriguez’ spread offense. I think Michigan will still get to a bowl, but only because of how bad the rest of the conference is.

4.  How about the new looks of old doormats Stanford and Temple? Both teams played with a new attitude and fire this weekend. Jim Harbaugh and Al Golden certainly have their programs heading in the right direction, and you can see the players have bought into it. There’s a new confidence for the Owls and the Cardinal.

5.  Just a thought for Penn St. Forget Greg Schiano and go after Al Golden in the off-season. If JoePa doesn’t want to step down, hire him as the defensive coordinator, pay him head coach salary (because they pay Paterno nothing), and name him the successor. This guy can coach and he is already laying a recruiting foundation in the same area he would have in Happy Valley. This is a no brainer to me.

6.   Just a quick blurb about those Missouri Tigers. They have an incredible offense but their Achilles heel will be their pass defense. You can’t give up almost 500 yards to Juice Williams and the Illini through the air. Oklahoma, Kansas, Texas Tech, and Texas are licking their chops.

7.  How about a nice welcome back for Sammie Stroughter. After missing most of 2007 with personal issues and a lacerated kidney, Stroughter came back with a vengeance catching 12 passes for 157 yards and 2 scores in Oregon St.’s loss at Stanford. Nice to see you back Sammie, and it looks like you’re picking up where you left off.

8.  If Tennessee has any chance in surprising some people and fighting for the SEC title, they will need better quarterback play than they received Monday night from Jonathan Crompton. Everything was sailing on him and he just did not look confident in the pocket. He will have to get better for the Vols chances to improve.

9.  I know I already mentioned Clemson, but I can’t let Tommy Bowden off the hook that easy. The writing was on the wall when he was even scared about this first game saying he wished they opened up against a cupcake. What a leader he is huh?  How can these players really want to play for him when he doesn’t show confidence in them. I don’t want to hear that attitude from the 9 and 10 year olds I coach in little league football. Long story short, he is a loser and I see no way he should be back, unless Clemson wins out and makes a BCS bowl. If he is back in ’09, I think we all should expect Furman or maybe The Citadel at the top of their schedule next year.

10. Finally, did anyone notice that BCS schools were only a combined 11-6 against non-BCS schools? Utah, Louisiana Tech, Bowling Green, Fresno St., East Carolina, and Arkansas St. all took down teams from the allegedly superior conferences. In fact each non-BCS conference earned a win against a BCS team. This trend started a few years ago and is continuing. If this does not show the ridiculous NCAA that these teams deserve a shot, and a playoff system is needed, then I don’t know what will. Why do you think so many BCS teams are now scheduling FCS teams? They’re flat out scared to schedule one of these teams.


Three guys who opened my eyes

1. Obi Ezeh MLB (Michigan)- Ezeh was one of the lone bright spots for the Wolverines against Utah. The sophomore was all over the field recording 15 tackles and an interception. Keep an eye on this talented youngster.

2. Diyral Briggs DE (Bowling Green)- Briggs was in the Panthers backfield moreLeSean McCoy. Briggs had 6 tackles, 2 sacks, and 3 other hurries in the Falcons win over Pitt. The senior had a total of 5 sacks all of last season, so let’s seehow he builds on it.

3. Stryker Sulak DE (Missouri)- What exactly didn’t Sulak do against Illinois. The senior had 8 tackles, 5 for loss, and a nation best 3 sacks on Saturday night. He also forced a fumble and blocked a kick in the Tigers win. It what could be anational championship year for Missouri, Sulak will need to have more than just this one big game.



Kevin Hornung is the College Football Editor for Taking It to the House and a lead scout for Great Blue North Draft Report


Author: lloydvance

Lloyd Vance is a NFL Writer, Analyst, Draft Expert, Researcher, and Historian. He serves as a Editor for "Taking It to the House and he covers the NFL on a daily basis. He is an Accredited Member of NFL Media and Philadelphia Eagles Media. Member of the Pro Football Writers of America (PFWA), Pro Football Researchers Association (PFRA), and The Maxwell Football Club

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