Silver Bullet Points To The Rafters

Written January 18th, 2012 by MaliBuckeye

It’s hump day, which means the mid-week linkage and notes from around the world of college sports.

Flying High, As Always

Buckeye 411

  • Dennis Hopson’s number hasn’t been retired by Ohio State. As someone who grew up in Ohio during his reign, I find that unbelievable… almost unforgivable. So, like a lot of other folks, I’m 100% behind the #Hop2theRafters movement to let OSU know it’s time for jersey number 32 to be honored… you can get involved, too: http://www.change.org/petitions/retire-32
  • Mark your calendars- Right now, Ohio State’s spring practice is set to begin March 28. The spring game will be played April 21 at 1:30 p.m. at Ohio Stadium. While Urban is out recruiting the next wave of Buckeye legends, the fact of the matter is that the team might look very very different come March 28- particularly if February goes as has been prophesied.
  • Not Just Recruiting Players- Coach Meyer has an open coaching position as well, and the OZone’s Brandon Castel has a look at the candidates. My three “favorites”:
    • Chuck Heater, Temple Defensive Coordinator
    • Troy Douglas, former UNC DB Coach
    • Travaris Robinson, current Florida DB Coach
  • Vested Interest- Speaking of open coaching positions, the Colts has one.  And, you know our opinion is that they should look no further than the man upstairs. (No, Tim… not that one)

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National Championship Preview: Alabama -vs- LSU

Written January 8th, 2012 by Eric

It’s the eve of the most mythical of mythical national championship matchups. The game that no-one outside of the bible belt actually wanted to see again after the ugly 9-6 OT finish in the middle of the season. The matchup that brought to light questions as to why, exactly, Michigan was not allowed a rematch in the 2007 mythical national championship game.

Amusingly, while everyone was busy clamoring that they would refuse to watch the championship game this year, a number of major College Football analysts and writers claimed that fans would watch anyway. “It’s college football at it’s best,” they breathlessly exclaimed, “You can’t help but watch it in the end.”

Well, I have repeatedly argued that I would not, could not, watch that travesty of a championship. To that end, I will not preview the game either. Instead, I provide you with a channel-by-channel listing of everything else you could be watching instead of torturing your ocular nerves with that field full of pathetic SEC suck. Enjoy!

I’m choosing the 8pm showtime start, so that you’re not even tempted to finish the ridiculous preview show.  Also, I’m not endorsing any of the shows or channels on the list (especially none of the political/news programs), merely providing you a public service so you know what’s available rather than having to scramble at the last minute.

  • ABC: The Bachelor, Castle
  • CBS: How I Met Your Mother, 2 Broke Girls, Two and a Half Men, Mike and Molly
  • NBC: Who’s Still Standing?, Fear Factor
  • Fox: House
  • PBS: Antiques Roadshow (x2), Martin Luther, Charlie Rose
  • A&E: Hoarders (x2)
  • ABC Family: Pretty Little Liars, The Lying Game
  • AMC: Blazing Saddles (if I turn the TV on at all, I’ll probably be here)
  • BBC: Top Gear (x2)
  • Cinemax: League of Extraordinary Gentlemen
  • CNN: Anderson Cooper 360, Piers Morgan Tonight
  • ESPN2: College Basketball (West Virginia at Connecticut)
  • ESPNU: College Basketball (Oklahoma at Oklahoma State), College Basketball (Cincinnati at Georgetown)
  • FNC: The O’Reilly Factor, Hannity
  • FX: X-Men Origins: Wolverine
  • G4: Groundhog Day
  • History: Pawn Stars (x2), American Pickers
  • MSNBC: The Ed Show, The Rachel Maddow Show
  • TBS: Family Guy (x6), Conan
  • TCM: The Andromeda Strain
  • TLC: The Cake Boss: Next Great Baker
  • TNT: The Mentalist (x2)
  • USA: NCIS, WWE Monday Night Raw
  • WE: The Golden Girls (x8)

Heck, better yet, go watch something on Netflix, or on your DVR, or go read a book.  You could even go get a tooth canal if you can find a dentist willing to do it that late.  Whatever floats your boat.

Just don’t give the Championship even a minute of your time.  It’s really, honestly, not worth it.

2012 BCS National Championship: The Castaways

Written January 6th, 2012 by MaliBuckeye

Updating an earlier post…

Well, here we are, on the cusp of the “Hyperbole Bowl!!!1!1!!”. Alabama -vs- LSU; the game so great it had to be played twice.

Same Game, Different Shirt

Granted, both LSU and Alabama are amazing teams, and deserve their top rankings. Each program is led by a coach that has won a national championship; with Coach Saban doing it at both schools. Both come from the tradition and experience laden SEC, winners of the last five national titles.

So, in many ways the extreme coverage is warranted. Given that both teams have had a significant time to prepare, and that their conference has exclusive coverage from the network that creates news stories, I’m actually surprised at how understated the buildup to this game has been. But no, I won’t be watching.

It’s not simply because I’ve already seen this game and believe that another team should have been given a chance… others have covered that already.  It’s also not due to the fact that this proves nothing new- an Alabama win only evens the series… when’s the rubber match?

No, the main reason I’m not interested in tuning in to the four letter network is that their coverage of this game has been woefully incomplete (go figure). In addition to the fact that both teams are on NCAA probation (who knew?), there’s another shadow over this “epic clash”. For all the talk about strategies and “SEC Speed” and Heisman Finalists, one key reason that these two teams are so successful is being completely overlooked and under-reported in the build up; again, surprising given all the time dedicated to previewing this match.

Look, I’m on record as being very “anti-human interest angle” pre Super Bowl, and my perspective here is why I refuse to watch the Olympics. However, there are student athletes who have been forgotten and cast aside here, not just by the media coverage, but by the programs themselves.

I’m referring, of course, to those players who have ‘left’ the active rosters of each team for what might be considered questionable reasons.

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Urban Meyer, the SEC, and Oversigning

Written December 22nd, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

‘Tis the season for bowls and so forth- our friend Dave has another look at the some of the inconsistencies between conferences. Be sure to tweet your thoughts to him @DaveRini

That’s supposed to read like Clint Eastwood’s The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. Hopefully you like bad jokes because I’ve got plenty more and I harbor no shame.

Who'll Think Of The Young People?

At this point, you’ve undoubtedly heard the term “oversigning” along with its technical definition, and more importantly what it means to your team/conference. If you haven’t, I highly recommend reading this outstanding article written right here at tBBC about 6 weeks ago. It covers the rising issue very well and the team at Oversigning.com has also done a fantastic job of not only putting all of this in context, but being extremely vocal of just how detrimental this has become to not only a team and its conference, but the kids involved. Now, I’m not going to get on my soapbox to claim that this is all about the kids and how unfair it is to them because we all know that ultimately this is still a business with an educational false-front. But for some schools, this has been taken too far, for too long.

On the flip side, the other hot topic this fall/winter is unquestionably the hiring of Urban Meyer. All of the cynics have definitely come out in full force since Urban accepted tOSU head coaching job and are doing everything in the their power to paint an evil picture of him. I think it’s safe to say that all of us had some sort of reservation be it big or small, given how things ended at Florida.

Well, they can question his motives for his oddly timed departure and return. They can question the number of players that were in some sort of trouble under his watch, and they can even question the fact that the talent he won with may not have been all of his own recruits. That’s fine; there are arguments on all sides of each of these points, but there are no questions swirling around his oversigning habits…because there are none. You see, even though the SEC created their very own rules on this oversigning debacle, Urban was still not a major offender, so he’ll have no problem adhering to the rules set in place by the B1G in 1956 which ban oversigning in the entire conference. Read More

Justice, Alabama, and the BCS: Part 2

Written December 6th, 2011 by Eric

This is the continuation of the article posted this morning looking at a solution to the current problems.

To the victors, the spoils.

Many people have spilled an incredible amount of ink over the years trying to determine a just system for selecting a national champion.  Our own Malibuckeye came up with his own system a while back and expounded upon it in length.  I honestly believe there is only one possible method of satisfactorily deciding a champion with all of the proper criteria. That answer is to allow the teams to decide it on the field in a playoff format. But, unlike with many other views, the playoff isn’t the critical factor. The biggest issue is to start to make the regular season important again.

The best way to determine who gets to play in the Division 1A Playoff, while simultaneously allowing fair access to all of the conferences, is to restrict access only to conference champions. Yes, you heard that right – conference champions only.

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Justice, Alabama, and the BCS: Part 1

Written December 6th, 2011 by Eric

Objectivity, Balance, and Power. Two of these are not possessed by the BCS.

This is the first of a two part article on this year’s BCS problems.

When you think of justice it obviously brings to mind the concepts of the court of law, lady justice, and a jury of your peers. Rarely do people consider justice in college football. They may use words like “fair” and “just” or their antonyms freely, but never in any rigorous context.

What the last 48 hours should have demonstrated to college football fans is that the current bowl system is inherently unjust – meant in the strictest philosophical sense.

What is the definition of justice? Dictionary.com suggests (irritatingly as the fifth definition) “the administering of deserved punishment and reward”. This gets at the very heart of the matter.

The BCS as a system was designed to solve the age old problem of determining who is the college football national champion in any given year. Where in previous years the AP and Coaches polls – and a laundry list of other polls before that – occasionally chose different teams, the BCS was supposed to be the unifying consensus. That, of course, went out the window in early 2004 when the AP poll decided to vote USC #1 over LSU, the team that won the national championship game that year.

But the ludicrousness of the BCS doesn’t even begin there. It begins with the very concept of using a poll to determine anything of importance at all.

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LSU/Alabama- The Forgotten

Written November 2nd, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

This week, the hyperbole has kicked into full gear as the top two teams in the nation play each other in what must certainly be the “Game Of The Millennium!!1!11!!”.

There's A Shirt... It Must Be Serious

Granted, both LSU and Alabama are amazing teams, and deserve their top rankings. Each program is led by a coach that has won a national championship; with Coach Saban doing it at both schools. Both come from the tradition and experience laden SEC, winners of the last five national titles. Heck, there’s even speculation that this may only be a precursor to the National Title game; that the tubes and wheels inside of computers might match them again in the Sugar Bowl for another go at it.

So, in many ways the extreme coverage is warranted. Given that both teams have had a week off to prepare, and that their conference has exclusive coverage from the network that creates news stories, I’m actually surprised at how understated the buildup to this game has been. And yes, I will be watching.

That being said, though, there’s one set of stories that won’t be covered in all of the leadup to this spectacular matchup. I’m on record as being very “anti-human interest angle” pre Super Bowl, and my perspective here is why I refuse to watch the Olympics. However, there are student athletes who have been forgotten and cast aside here, not just by the media coverage, but by the programs themselves.

I’m referring, of course, to those players who have ‘left’ the active rosters of each team for what might be considered questionable reasons.

Read More

Silver Bullet… um… BB Points

Written June 4th, 2011 by MaliBuckeye

Remember, it's not the size...

Quick hits from Friday/Saturday AM

Buckeye News

“There is no scintilla of evidence related to 90 percent of those kids listed in the Sports Illustrated article that they did anything wrong,” James said. “That’s the way it’s going to turn out, I believe. It’s just irresponsible reporting.”

NCAA News

  • The University of North Carolina expects to get their Notice of Allegations from the NCAA in June, stemming from the issues that surfaced last summer.  This says two things to me; either UNC’s situation is really significant and it’s taken a long time to root it out, or Ohio State has done a great job at working with the NCAA to address the issue (discovered in January/NOA a few months later).
  • The big news yesterday was the SEC’s decision to change their recruiting guidelines. First, the good- Medical exemptions will be reviewed at the conference level (say goodbye to Dr. Saban’s practice). Also, transfers of graduate students will not be allowed if they only have one year of elligibility remaining (No more Jeremiah Masoli to Mississippi situations). Finally, they’ve opened the door for a “national conversation” rather than just a “conference by conference”.  More on this in a bit.
  • And now, the bad- The conference voted to reduce the “signing cap” from 28 to 25. While this was hailed as big news, the fact of the matter is that a team with only 10 available scholarships shouldn’t be able to sign 25 student athletes- as our friends at Oversigning.com point out. Huge kudos to their work- it’s only because of media pressure that this is even being discussed.
  • Jeff Shultz from the Atlanta Journal Constitution agrees that the SEC’s “decision” is mostly just PR:

Let me translate: Coaches now have a lower limit as to how unethical and morally reprehensible they can be. Feel better? This was sort of like the real SEC passing a rule: “We recognize that insider trading is a problem. So we’re going to cap profits from said illegal transactions at $2.7 million.”

  • And for your daily dose of arrogance:

“So I’m very pleased that the league is where it is today, and I’m proud of the step we’ve taken really in a leadership role nationally to deal with this bigger concept of roster management.”

Actually, the leadership role in this was taken in 1956, when the Big Ten banned signing more recruits than a team had openings for. Fifty five years ago.